The bounties of Allah
Sheikh Saalih Aal Taalib
October 10, 2008 ~ Shawwaal 10, 1429
All praise be to Allah. All praise be to Allah for what He bestowed on us of the fasting and standing (in prayer) in Ramadhaan. And all praise be to Allah, the One Who blessed us with the noble month and its completion. All praise be to Allah Who rewards good with good, and (rewards) patience with good outcomes and pleasure.
And I bear witness that there is no god but Allah alone. He has no partner. He is our strength when the thoughts become evil and He is our Refuge when the means are cut off.
And I bear witness that Muhammad is the servant of Allah and His messenger, friend and chosen one. May Allah’s salutations, peace and blessings be upon him, and upon his family, companions, those who follow them and on us and on Allah’s righteous servants.
Thereafter: Then verily the best of speech is the Book of Allah and the best guidance is the guidance of Muhammad – peace be upon him – and the worst of matters are the innovated, and every innovation is a misguidance: “O you who believe! Fear Allah as He should be feared. [Obey Him, be thankful to Him, and remember Him always], and die not except in a state of Islam (as Muslims) with complete submission to Allah.” [Aal Imraan; Verse 102]. Fear Allah and reform the actions, for whoever fears and reforms then they will have no fear or grief.
O Muslims: May Allah make your days happy, with pleasure. And may Allah clothe you with the light of piety. Verily the proofs of the Book of Allah are explained. Its jewels are precious. In it are apparent proofs and restrictive admonitions. It encompasses the most wonderful rulings, and the most truthful and sweet narratives, and as the stand is that of gratitude and praise, then let us journey with a chapter of the chapters of the Quraan, we will contemplate and ponder over it. A chapter called the “Bounties Chapter” due to the abundant bounties enumerated by Allah – the Exalted – in it on His servants. The Bee (Nahl) Chapter, in it are many proofs of the Oneness of Allah –the Exalted – and His divinity. It was revealed towards the end of the stay of the prophet – peace be upon him – in Makkah, after the struggle between the believers and the polytheists intensified, and there was no victory for the believers to encourage them, and no event descended on polytheism breaking its back, and it was as if the polytheists were saying: where is the painful consequences you are threatening us with? So the answer came decisively at the beginning of the chapter: “The Event (the Hour or the punishment of disbelievers and polytheists or the Islamic laws or commandments), ordained by Allah will come to pass, so seek not to hasten it.” [Nahl; Verse 1]
O Muslims: Allah – the Exalted – mentioned all sorts of bounties in this great surah, Surah Nahl, mentioning their origins and completions. At the beginning of the chapter, (Allah mentions) the bounty of revelation and the sending of messengers, inviting towards the Oneness of Allah and exalting it as a bounty: “He sends down the angels with inspiration (rooh) of His Command to whom of His slaves He pleases (saying): “Warn mankind that none has the right to be worshiped but I, so fear Me (by abstaining from sins and evil deeds).”” [Nahl; Verse 2]. So He called revelation rooh/spirit, just as Jibraeel is called spirit, because a human without revelation is a body without a soul/spirit, the like of which is like the dead.
Then Allah – the Exalted – mentions His bounty of the creation of the heavens and the earth, and the creation of humans from sperm, and His bounty of the creation of cattle and the bounty of the descent of (rain)water, and the stability of the mountains, the breaking through of the rivers, the lengthening of the pathways and the beautification of the sky with stars and the calming of the creation with them in an amazing order and (in) brilliant verses which Allah – the Exalted – concludes by His saying: “And if you would count the graces of Allah, never could you be able to count them. Truly! Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” [Nahl; Verse 18]
Verily there is no admonition more admonishing than the Quraan and no explanation more eloquent than the verses of Allah. I seek protection in Allah from the accursed satan. In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful.
“The Event (the Hour or the punishment of disbelievers and polytheists or the Islamic laws or commandments), ordained by Allah will come to pass, so seek not to hasten it. Glorified and Exalted be He above all that they associate as partners with Him.
He sends down the angels with inspiration of His Command to whom of His slaves He pleases (saying): “Warn mankind that none has the right to be worshiped but I, so fear Me.”
He has created the heavens and the earth with truth. High be He Exalted above all they associate as partners with Him.
He has created man from Nutfah (mixed drops of male and female sexual discharge), then behold, this same (man) becomes an open opponent.
And the cattle, He has created them for you; in them there is warmth (warm clothing), and numerous benefits, and of them you eat.
And wherein is beauty for you, when you bring them home in the evening, and as you lead them forth to pasture in the morning.
And they carry your loads to a land that you could not reach except with great trouble to yourselves. Truly, your Lord is full of Kindness, Most Merciful.
And (He has created) horses, mules and donkeys, for you to ride and as an adornment. And He creates (other) things of which you have no knowledge.
And upon Allah is the responsibility to explain the Straight Path, but there are ways that turn aside (such as Paganism, Judaism, Christianity, etc.).
And had He willed, He would have guided you all (mankind). He it is Who sends down water (rain) from the sky; from it you drink and from it (grows) the vegetation on which you send your cattle to pasture;
With it He causes to grow for you the crops, the olives, the date-palms, the grapes, and every kind of fruit.Verily! In this is indeed an evident proof and a manifest sign for people who give thought.
And He has subjected to you the night and the day, the sun and the moon; and the stars are subjected by His Command. Surely, in this are proofs for people who understand.
And whatsoever He has created for you on this earth of varying colours. Verily! In this is a sign for people who remember.
And He it is Who has subjected the sea (to you), that you eat thereof fresh tender meat (i.e. fish), and that you bring forth out of it ornaments to wear. And you see the ships ploughing through it, that you may seek (thus) of His Bounty (by transporting the goods from place to place) and that you may be grateful.
And He has affixed into the earth mountains standing firm, lest it should shake with you, and rivers and roads, that you may guide yourselves. And landmarks (signposts, etc. during the day) and by the stars (during the night), they (mankind) guide themselves. Is then He, Who creates as one who creates not? Will you not then remember?
And if you would count the graces of Allah, never could you be able to count them. Truly! Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” [Nahl; Verse 1-18].
Then Allah – the Exalted – mentions the proofs of His Oneness and He commands with it, and He explains that it is the call of the messengers from Nooh – peace be upon him – until Muhammad – peace be upon him. And He mentions the condition of the happy and the miserable. Then He returns and says: “And whatever of blessings and good things you have, it is from Allah.” [Nahl; Verse 53], so do not waste the worship except to Allah – Glorified is He – for He is the True Granter.
O Muslims: And the chapter continues enumerating other types of bounties, and colours of boons, so He mentions from drinks, milk: “And verily! In the cattle, there is a lesson for you. We give you to drink of that which is in their bellies, from between excretions and blood, pure milk; palatable to the drinkers.” [Nahl; Verse 66], just as He mentions honey in the miracle of the bee: “There comes forth from their bellies, a drink of varying colour wherein is healing for men.” [Nahl; Verse 69], then Allah – the Exalted – mentions His bounty of Him creating for you wives from among yourselves, that you may find repose in them and He granted you children and grandchildren.
And the enumeration of the bounties continues, so He mentions the bounty of knowledge and teaching and the preparation responsible for that: “And Allah has brought you out from the wombs of your mothers while you know nothing. And He gave you hearing, sight, and hearts that you might give thanks (to Allah).” [Nahl; Verse 78]
O Muslims: Verily the bounties of Allah are beyond counting, and between every breath and the next, bounties descend and virtues succeed (each other), and Allah – the Exalted – mentions the bounty of homes and houses: “And Allah has made for you in your homes an abode, and made for you out of the hides of the cattle (tents for) dwelling, which you find so light (and handy) when you travel and when you stay (in your travels), and of their wool, fur, and hair (sheep wool, camel fur, and goat hair), a furnishing and articles of convenience (e.g. carpets, blankets, etc.), a comfort for a while. And Allah has made for you out of that which He has created shades, and has made for you places of refuge in the mountains, and has made for you garments to protect you from the heat (and cold), and coats of mail to protect you from your (mutual) violence. Thus does He perfect His Grace unto you, that you may submit yourselves to His Will (in Islam).” [Nahl; Verse 80-81]
Behold; so give thanks for the bounties of Allah, for verily gratitude is always with increase. “If you give thanks, I will give you more (of My Blessings)” [Ibraheem; Verse 7]. And whoever does not give thanks for the bounties, then verily he is exposed to their passing away, and whoever gives thanks for them, then verily he ties them by their reigns. Our Lord! Inspire and bestow upon us the power and ability that we may be grateful for Your favours which You have bestowed on us and on our parents, and that we may do righteous good deeds that will please You, and admit us by Your Mercy among Your righteous slaves.
May Allah bless me and you in the Great Quraan, and benefit me and you in what is in it of verses and noble reminders. I say these words of mine and I ask Allah the Exalted to forgive me and you.
All praise be to Allah. All praise be to Allah, the Praised in every condition, and thanks to Him an increasing thanks in every situation and speech. And I bear witness that there is no god but Allah alone. He has no partner. Glory be to Him. He is the Possessor of virtue and gifts, and to Him is the return and the end.
And I bear witness that Muhammad is the servant of Allah and His messenger. May Allah’s salutations, peace and blessings be upon him, and upon the companions, family and those who follow them and those who follow them in goodness until the day of Judgement.
Thereafter: At the end of this great chapter, Surah Nahl, and after mentioning the bounties, Allah the Exalted mentions two examples: An example of one who gives thanks for the bounties of Allah and he is Ibraheem the friend – peace be upon him – : “Verily, Ibrahim was an Ummah, or a nation, obedient to Allah, Hanifa (i.e. to worship none but Allah), and he was not one of those who were Al-Mushrikun. (He was) thankful for His Graces. He (Allah) chose him (as an intimate friend) and guided him to a Straight Path.” [Nahl; Verse 120-121]
As for the second example, it is that of the one who shows ingratitude for the bounties of Allah: “And Allah puts forward the example of a township (Makkah), that dwelt secure and well content; its provision coming to it in abundance from every place, but it (its people) denied the Favours of Allah (with ungratefulness). So Allah made it taste the extreme of hunger (famine) and fear, because of that (evil, i.e. denying Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him) which they (its people) used to do. And verily, there had come unto them a Messenger (Muhammad –peace be upon him) from among themselves, but they denied him, so the torment overtook them while they were Zalimun.” [Nahl; Verse 112-113]
Verily it is the way of Allah that continues in every time and place. And Allah the Exalted delays and is not negligent, and the way of Allah does not exclude anyone. And Allah the Exalted shades the creation with His bounties and virtues, and delays for them and allows them to enjoy, until they persist in their transgression and are arrogant, and their sight is blinded to the truth, and they say who is more intense than us in strength, Allah overtakes them from where they did not expect. His command overtakes them from the sky or from the earth or from above them or from under their feet or from between them or from within them. The calamities come in floods, earthquakes, wars, diseases, economic collapse and political unrest, and surely Allah – the Exalted – said in this surah, Surah Nahl: “Do then those who devise evil plots feel secure that Allah will not sink them into the earth, or that the torment will not seize them from directions they perceive not? Or that He may catch them in the midst of their going to and fro (in their jobs), so that there be no escape for them (from Allah’s Punishment)? Or that He may catch them with gradual wasting (of their wealth and health). Truly! Your Lord is indeed full of Kindness, Most Merciful?” [Nahl; Verse 45-47]
And surely from among the strange things among humans is that the hand of Allah works around them, and seizes some of them with a seizure of the All-Mighty, All-Capable to carry out what He wills. Their plots and plans do not avail them over Him, and their strength, knowledge and wealth do not defend them against Him.
And the deceptive ones continue peacefully, not expecting that they will be seized as others were seized, and not fearing that the punishment of Allah will be prolonged on them in their waking and their sleeping, in their neglect or in their wakefulness, and this is objectionable security.
Verily what is happening of catastrophes and calamities threatening the world and influencing it, is – by Allah – a sign. How can the financial legend recede and the fortress of interest (usury) be destroyed and the strength be repulsed, and everything end in a few minutes, and people become confused and scared. Where is the strength and power, where is the economic predominance?! In moments and with no warning everything ends. Verily it is – by Allah – a sign, admonition and lesson, and verily it is a warning to return people to their Lord and to return them to their Creator, and so that they mandate the law of Allah and His method, and they are steadfast on His path, and that they know that all power is for Allah.
This; and send salutations and peace on the messenger of Allah, Muhammad, the son of Abdullah.
O Allah send salutations and peace on Muhammad and on the family of Muhammad just as you sent salutations on Ibraheem and the family of Ibraheem. Verily You are the Praiseworthy, the Mighty. And send blessings on Muhammad and on the family of Muhammad just as You sent blessings on Ibraheem and the family of Ibraheem in the worlds. Verily You are the Praiseworthy, the Mighty. And send much peace – O Lord – upon him.
O Allah grant honour to Islam and the Muslims…