Quran's Tafhim ( explanation)

*19) Literally, "taubat an-nasuh-an "may either mean that one should offer such true repentance as may have no tinge of pretence and hypocrisy in it, or that one should wish one's own self well and repenting of sin should save oneself from the evil end, or that one should so adorn and improve one's life after repentance as to become a cause of admonition for others, and seeing his example others also may reform themselves accordingly. These are the meanings of taubat an-nasuh which- are indicated by its literal sense. As for its religious meaning, its explanation is found in the Hadith which Ibn Abi, Hatim has related on the authority of Zirr bin Hubaish. He says: "When I asked Hadrat Ubayy bin Ka'b the meaning of taubat an-nasuh, he said that he had asked the Holy Prophet (upon whom be peace) the same question, and he had replied: 'It implies that when you happen to commit an error, you should feel penitent for it, then should implore Allah for forgiveness remorsefully, and then should refrain from committing the same error again." This same meaning has been reported from hadrat 'Umar. Hadrat 'Abdullah bin Mas'ud and Hadrat 'Abdullah bin `Abbas also, and in a tradition Hadrat 'Umar has defined taubat an-nasuh, thus: 'After offering repentance one should not even think of committing the sin, not to speak of repeating it." (Ibn Jarir) Hadrat 'Ali once heard a desert Arab chanting the words of repentance and forgiveness quickly and mechanically and remarked: `This is the repentance of the liars." The man asked: 'What is true repentance? Hadrat 'AIi replied: It should be accompanied by six things:
(1) You should feel penitent for the wrong you have done: (2) you should carry out the duties that you havc ignored; t3) restore the rights that you have usurped; (4) ask forgiveness of him whom you have wronged; (S) make a resolve not to repeat the sin again; and (6) consume yourself in obedience to AIlah as you have so far been consuming it in wrongdoing, and cause it to taste the bitterness of obedience as you havc so far been causing it to enjoy the sweet taste of disobedience and sin. " (Al-Kashshaf)
In connection with repentance there are some other points also which should be well understood: (I) That repentance, in fact, is to show remorse for an act of disobedience only because it is a disobedience of Allah; otherwise to make a resolve to refrain from a sin because it is harmful for health, for instance, or it is likely to cause defamation or financial loss, is no repentance; (2) that man should offer repentance as soon as he realizes that he has committed disobedience of Allah and should compensate for it without delay in whatever form possible and should not defer it in any way; (3) that violating one's repentance again and making a jest of repentance and repeating the sin again and again of which one has repented, is a proof of the falsity of one's repentance, for the essence of repentance, is penitence, and breaking one's repentance repeatedly is a sign that it has not been motivated by penitence; (4) that if the person who has repented sincerely and resolved not to repeat the sin again, happens to repeat it once again because of human weakness, it will not revive his past sin: however, he should offer a fresh repentance for the latter sin sod should resolve more firmly that he would not commit the sin in future; (5) that it is not necessary to renew one's repentance again everytime one remembers the disobedience committed in the past, but if one's self derives pleasure from the remembrance of the past, sinful life, one should offer repentance again and again until the remembrance of the sins causes remorse instead of pleasure and enjoyment. For the person who has actually repented of disobedience because of fear of God cannot derive pleasure from the thought chat he has been disobeying God. His deriving pleasure from it is a sign that fear of God has not taken root in his heart.
*20) The words of the verse deserve deep consideration. It has not been said chat if you repeat, you will surely be forgiven and will certainly be admitted to Paradise, but that: "If you offer true repentance, it may well be that AIIah will treat you kindly." It means that it is not incumbent upon AIIah to accept the repentance of the sinner and to grant him Paradise instead of subjecting him to punishment but it will be His kindness and compassion that He may forgive well as reward His servant. One should have hope of Hit forgiveness, but one should not commit a sin with the confidence that one will achieve forgiveness by repentance.
*21) That is, `He will not allow the reward of their good deeds to go to waste. He will not let the disbelievers and the hypocrites taunt the believers that they had gained nothing n spite of their worship. Humilitation will be the fate of the rebels and the disobedient and not of the faithful and obedient."
*22) When this verse is read along with w. 12-13 of Surah AI-Hadid, it becomes clear that the running on of the light before the believers will take place when they will be proceeding towards Paradise from the Plain of Resurrection. There it will be pitch dark alI around and those who will have been condenmed to Hell, will be groping; about in it; the light will only be with the believers by which they will be travelling on their way. On this critical occasion, hearing the wailings and groanings of those groping in the dark the believers will be feeling terrorstricken- In view of their past errors and short-comings they will be afraid lest they too should be deprived of their light and made to grope about like those-wretched people. Therefore, they will pray: "O our Lord, forgive us our sins and Iet our light remain with us until we reach Paradise." Ibn Jarir has cited Hadrat Abdullah bin 'Abbas as explaining the meaning of Rabbana-atimim lava nurana thus They will implore AIIah AI-mighty that their light be allowed to remain with thetas and kept from going out until they have crossed the bridge across Hell." The commentary given by Hadrat Hasan Basri, Mujahid and Dahhak also is almost the same. Ibn Kathir has cited their this saying: 'When the believers see that the hypocrites have been deprived of the light, they will pray to Allah for the perfection of their light." (For further explanation, see E.N. 17 of Surah Al Hadid).
Back to top button