The Name of Allah Al-‘Aleem العليم (Part 15)
This post is a continuation of the Name of Allah Al-‘Aleem العليم (Part 14) in which we mentioned the three ranks of Qadar – Decree in detail. This post takes off from where we stopped in the Part 14, explaining the fourth rank of Al-Qadar – Decree.
Al-Qadar (Decree) has two meanings:
1) التقدير – at-Taqdeer Allah’s action of decreeing
2) المقدر – al-Muqaddar What Allah has decreed before the creation of the heavens and earth by 50,000 years.
When you believe in the Qadar, you believe in the Ruboobiyyah of Allah (Allah’s action of decreeing).
The fourth rank of Al-Qadar is the Creation.
4) Creation (الخلق)
We believe that Allah is the Creator of everything خالق كل. There is nothing in the heavens or on the earth but Allah has created it. He is its Owner, He disposes its affairs, and He has full authority and power over it. Allah has created everything, including our actions.
Our actions comprise two things:
a) Firm Will إرادة جازمة
Whenever we take any action, we have the will and strength to do it, and both this will and ability are created by Allah. Therefore, our actions are created by Allah.
Evidence: Allah said on the tongue of Ibrahim عليه السلام in Surat as-Saaffat [37:96]:
“While Allah has created you and what you make!”
We should understand the matter of Al-Qadar very well, because many people have deviated from the right path with regards to their belief in it. There are three categories of people with regards to the Qadar:
When you believe in the Qadar, you believe in the Ruboobiyyah of Allah (Allah’s action of decreeing).
This group of people affirms the pre-ordainments of Allah, but go to extremes in affirming it; so much so, that they deny that the servants have choice and ability. They claim that we eat, drink, and sleep all by compulsion. They say that the servants of Allah are forced and have no choice.
Their claim is refuted by the Qur’an and the Sunnah, where Allah has affirmed will for the humans. We have the ability and the choice.
- In Surat Aal-‘Imran [3:152]:
“And Allah had certainly fulfilled His promise to you when you were killing the enemy by His permission until [the time] when you lost courage and fell to disputing about the order [given by the Prophet] and disobeyed after He had shown you that which you love. Among you are some who desire this world, and among you are some who desire the Hereafter. Then he turned you back from them [defeated] that He might test you. And He has already forgiven you, and Allah is the possessor of bounty for the believers.”
Among those who participated in the Battle of Uhud were those who wanted the Dunya, and others who wanted the Hereafter.
- In Surat at-Takwir [81:28]:
“To whomsoever among you who wills to walk straight,”
Man has the choice whether or not to choose the right path. He has a will.
Allah also affirms strength and ability for humans.
- In Surat at-Taghabun [64:16]:
“So keep your duty to Allah and fear Him as much as you can.”
Allah also affirms that we perform actions.
In many verses in the Qur’an, Allah says “بما تفعلون” – “Of what you do” and “بما تعلمون” – “Of what you know”
Creation (خلق) is attributed to Allah.
The ‘taking of action’ (مباشرة) is attributed to the human. Therefore, Allah says in Surat an-Nahl [16:32]:
“Those whose lives the angels take while they are in a pious state (i.e. pure from all evil, and worshipping none but Allah Alone) saying (to them): Salamun ‘Alaikum (peace be on you) enter Paradise, because of (the good) which you used to do (in the world).”
One takes the action and Allah accordingly rewards him.
The Jabriyyah group says that since Allah created the ‘taking of action’, man is compelled and does not have any choice. This sort of thought is an evil thought because they are accusing Allah of having created us and then putting people into Hell while they are compelled to sin. Man is the one taking action and he is responsible for his actions. He has the will and the strength, as well as the ability.
We are the ones who talk whenever we want and keep silent whenever we want. No one compels us to do so. So how can anyone say that Allah compels us and we have no choice?
The Prophet (ﷺ) said:
إِنَّمَا الأَعْمَالُ بِالنِّيَّةِ وَإِنَّمَا لاِمْرِئٍ مَا نَوَى
“Actions are but by intentions, and each person will have that which he intended.” [Muslim]
And he (ﷺ) said:
فَإِذَا أَمَرْتُكُمْ بِشَىْءٍ فَخُذُوا مِنْهُ مَا اسْتَطَعْتُمْ وَإِذَا نَهَيْتُكُمْ عَنْ شَىْءٍ فَانْتَهُوا
“……If I command you to do something, then do as much of it as you can, and if I forbid you from doing something, then refrain from it.” [Ibn Majah]
It was reported that a man who was caught stealing was brought to ‘Umar ibn Al-Khattaab رضي الله عنه who ordered that the man’s hand be cut off. The man said: “Wait, O leader of the believers! I only stole because this was in the Qadr of Allaah.” ‘Umar replied “And we are amputating your hand because it is in the Qadr of Allah.”
This group affirms the servants’ will and ability in his actions but goes to extremes regarding it. They reject the fact that Allah has the Will. They claim that there is no Qadar, that Allah did not decree anything, and that Allah does not know about things until they have occurred.
They are claiming that Allah orders and prohibits and does not know who will obey Him and who will not, and who will go to Paradise and who will go to Hell. They are claiming that Allah does not know what will happen to His creation.
عَنْ يَحْيَى بْنِ يَعْمُرَ، قَالَ أَوَّلُ مَنْ تَكَلَّمَ فِي الْقَدَرِ مَعْبَدٌ الْجُهَنِيُّ قَالَ فَخَرَجْتُ أَنَا وَحُمَيْدُ بْنُ عَبْدِ الرَّحْمَنِ الْحِمْيَرِيُّ حَتَّى أَتَيْنَا الْمَدِينَةَ فَقُلْنَا لَوْ لَقِينَا رَجُلاً مِنْ أَصْحَابِ النَّبِيِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم فَسَأَلْنَاهُ عَمَّا أَحْدَثَ هَؤُلاَءِ الْقَوْمُ . قَالَ فَلَقِينَاهُ يَعْنِي عَبْدَ اللَّهِ بْنَ عُمَرَ وَهُوَ خَارِجٌ مِنَ الْمَسْجِدِ قَالَ فَاكْتَنَفْتُهُ أَنَا وَصَاحِبِي قَالَ فَظَنَنْتُ أَنَّ صَاحِبِي سَيَكِلُ الْكَلاَمَ إِلَىَّ فَقُلْتُ يَا أَبَا عَبْدِ الرَّحْمَنِ إِنَّ قَوْمًا يَقْرَءُونَ الْقُرْآنَ وَيَتَقَفَّرُونَ الْعِلْمَ وَيَزْعُمُونَ أَنْ لاَ قَدَرَ وَأَنَّ الأَمْرَ أُنُفٌ قَالَ فَإِذَا لَقِيتَ أُولَئِكَ فَأَخْبِرْهُمْ أَنِّي مِنْهُمْ بَرِيءٌ وَأَنَّهُمْ مِنِّي بُرَآءُ وَالَّذِي يَحْلِفُ بِهِ عَبْدُ اللَّهِ لَوْ أَنَّ أَحَدَهُمْ أَنْفَقَ مِثْلَ أُحُدٍ ذَهَبًا مَا قُبِلَ ذَلِكَ مِنْهُ حَتَّى يُؤْمِنَ بِالْقَدَرِ خَيْرِهِ وَشَرِّهِ
From Yahya bin Ya’mur: “The first person to speak about Al-Qadar was Ma’bad al-Juhani.” He said: “Humaid bin ‘Abdur-Rahman al-Himyari and I went out until we reached Al-Madinah, and we said: ‘If we could only meet someone among the companions of the Prophet (ﷺ) so we could ask him about what those people have innovated.” [He said:] “So we met him – meaning ‘Abdullah bin ‘Umar – while he was leaving the Masjid.” [He said:] “My companion and I were on either side of him.” [He said:] “I thought my companion was going to leave the speaking to me so I said: ‘O Abu ‘Abdur-Rahman! There is a group of people who recite the Qur’an and seek knowledge, and they claim there is no decree (Al-Qadar), and that the affair is left to chance.’ He said: ‘Whenever you meet those people, then tell them that I am not of them and they are not of me. By the One Whom ‘Abdullah swears by! If one of them were to spend gold the like of Uhud (mountain) in charity, it would not be accepted from him until he believes in Al-Qadar; the good of it and the bad of it.’” [At-Tirmidhi]
Ibn ‘Uthaimeen (رحمه الله) said that he does not know if this sect still exists or not, or if they are few or have increased, but that it appeared in the last era of the companions.
3) Ahl As-Sunnah wal-Jam’aah
This group follows the middle course and combines the texts and follows the best path. They believe in the four degrees of Qadar and give Allah His due estimate.
If you ask someone why she does not wear Hijab or pray, and she says: “Allah still did not guide me; when Allah guides me I will wear Hijab and pray” – then she is thinking like the Jabriyyah. It is as if they have been accused, in that Allah decreed for them to commit sin, and they have no choice, and when Allah wills for them to do good, they will do good.
One can refute such claims through the verses of the Qur’an:
In Surat al-An’am [6:148]:
“Those who took partners (in worship) with Allah will say: ‘If Allah had willed, we would not have taken partners (in worship) with Him, nor would our fathers, and we would not have forbidden anything (against His Will).’ Likewise belied those who were before them, (they argued falsely with Allah’s Messengers, till they tasted of Our Wrath. Say: ‘Have you any knowledge (proof) that you can produce before us? Verily, you follow nothing but guess and you do nothing but lie.’”
Allah talks about the hypocrites in these verses, whose statements are similar to those claimed above.
“لو شاء الله ما أشركنا و لا آباؤنا و لا حرمنا من شيء” – If Allah had willed, we would not have taken partners (in worship) with Him, nor would have our fathers, and we would not have forbidden anything (against His Will).
Allah answered them by saying:
“كذالك كذب الذين من قبلهم” – Likewise belied those who were before them
“حتى ذاقوا بأسنا” – Till they tasted Our wrath
If committing sins was acceptable to Allah, He would not make them taste the torment. Their excuse is not acceptable to Allah.
“قل هل عندكم من علم فتخرجوه لنا” – Say: Have you any knowledge that you can produce before us?
“إن تتبعون إلا الظن و إن أنتم إلا تخرصون” – Verily, you follow nothing but guess and you do nothing but lie.
Another evidence is in Surat an-Nisa’ [4:165]:
“Messengers as bearers of good news as well as of warning in order that mankind should have no plea against Allah after the Messengers. And Allah is Ever All-Powerful, All-Wise.“
What is the duty of the Messengers?
“مبشرين و منذرين” – Bearers of good news and warning
The purpose behind that is:
“لئلا يكون للناس على الله حجة بعد الرسل” – In order that mankind should have no plea against Allah after the Messengers.
Thus no one can come on the Day of Judgment saying that no warner came to him. We will have no excuse before Allah on the Day of Judgment. Allah will never do something useless or in vain; it does not suit Allah to do an action without a purpose. Allah sent the Messengers to show us the way, it is upon us to accept or reject.
Some logical evidences against this group:
- If there are two ways to travel to a country – one is short and safe and the other is full of dangers – which way will you take? Surely the short and safe way. Similar to that is our travel to Allah. Allah told us there is a way to Paradise and a way to Hell. Why are we keen to take the means of safety in the Dunya yet we do not take the means which will save us in the Hereafter?
- Is it wise to say that if a beast attacks you, do not run away; if Allah wills, He will save you, if He wills, you will die? If you feel hungry or thirsty, do not get up. Stay in your place. If Allah wills, He will satiate you; if He does not will it, you will not get food. People do not accept this with regards to worldly matters. So why do they make this excuse when it comes to religious matters?
Some of the Fruits of Believing in the Qadar
1) Perfection of Tawheed Ar-Ruboobiyyah
Qadar is تقدير الله; which is the Action of Allah.
2) Peace and rest in the heart
This is because you know that you will not miss out on whatever was written for you, and whatever you missed was not written for you. You will be satisfied with what Allah has written, because you know what Allah has written is good for you. Even if it looks evil, the purpose behind it is good.
Imagine a country which has a just, kind king, who sets a penalty upon wrongdoers. The people would be happy and praise that king because they know that what he is doing is out of his justice and kindness. Do we think like this about Allah when He afflicts us or others with calamities?
Allah is the Owner of the whole world. Whenever He sends any of His Qadar in any part of the world, when the rest of the world look at it, how do they think about Allah? Will they question His Actions or say, all praise be to Allah? Do we praise Allah for all His Qadar and Actions? Look into whatever is happening in your life – are you pleased or displeased?
3) It will strengthen your reliance on Allah
If you know that everything is by Allah’s Qadaa and Qadar, you will rely on Him and not on people.
4) It will help you practice sincerity
When you know that everything is in Allah’s Hands and that people cannot decide anything for you, you will be sincere to Allah. Your heart will not be attached to the people, it will be attached to Allah.
5) It will make you think good and expect good from Allah.
Nothing comes from Allah except good.
6) You will not feel self-conceit (العجب) because you know that what you attained is what Allah decreed for you. You will engage yourself in gratitude and not think high of yourself.
7) You will not feel grief or sorrow for what befalls you, because you know that there is a wisdom and good in what Allah has written for you. You will not feel excessively happy for something Allah gave you, nor excessively sad if you lose something. You will be moderate in your feelings. You will be grateful at the time of prosperity and patient at the time of adversity. This is the attitude of the believer.
Source: Useful words in the explanation of Book of Tawheed القول المفيد في شرح كتاب التوحيد by Ibn ‘Uthaimeen رحمه الله
Posted on May 24, 2017, in Allah's Names and Attributes, The Name of Allaah Al-'Aleem and tagged Al-'Aleem [Part 15], knowledge, Knowledge of Allah, Qadar, Qadeer. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.