Among the Qualities of Our Prophet Muhammad are Mercy and Kindness
Allah addresses His Messenger and reminds him and the believers of the favor that He has made his heart and words soft for his Ummah, those who follow his command and refrain from what he prohibits.
(And by the mercy of Allah, you dealt with them gently) 3:159. meaning, who would have made you this kind, if it was not Allah’s mercy for you and them. Qatadah said that,
(And by the mercy of Allah, you dealt with them gently) means, “With Allah’s mercy you became this kind.” Al-Hasan Al-Basri said that this, indeed, is the description of the behavior that Allah sent Muhammad with. This Ayah is similar to Allah’s statement,
(Verily, there has come unto you a Messenger from among yourselves. It grieves him that you should receive any injury or difficulty. He is anxious over you (to be rightly guided, to repent to Allah); for the believers (he is) full of pity, kind, and merciful) 9:128. Allah said next,
(And had you been severe and harsh-hearted, they would have broken away from about you;)
The severe person is he who utters harsh words, and,
(harsh-hearted) is the person whose heart is hard. Had this been the Prophet’s behavior, “They would have scattered from around you. However, Allah gathered them and made you kind and soft with them, so that their hearts congregate around you.” `Abdullah bin `Amr said that he read the description of the Messenger of Allah in previous Books, “He is not severe, harsh, obscene in the marketplace or dealing evil for evil. Rather, he forgives and pardons.”
The Order for Consultation and to Abide by it
(So pardon them, and ask (Allah’s) forgiveness for them; and consult them in the affairs.)
The Messenger of Allah used to ask his Companions for advice about various matters, to comfort their hearts, and so they actively implement the decision they reach. For instance, before the battle of Badr, the Prophet asked his Companions for if Muslims should intercept the caravan (led by Abu Sufyan). They said, “O Messenger of Allah! If you wish to cross the sea, we would follow you in it, and if you march forth to Barkul-Ghimad we would march with you. We would never say what the Children of Israel said to Musa, `So go, you and your Lord, and fight you two, we are sitting right here.’ Rather, we say march forth and we shall march forth with you; and before you, and to your right and left shall we fight.” The Prophet also asked them for their opinion about where they should set up camp at Badr. Al-Mundhir bin `Amr suggested to camp close to the enemy, for he wished to acquire martyrdom.
Concerning the battle of Uhud, the Messenger asked the Companions if they should fortify themselves in Al-Madinah or go out to meet the enemy, and the majority of them requested that they go out to meet the enemy, and he did. He also took their advice on the day of Khandaq (the Trench) about conducting a peace treaty with some of the tribes of Al-Ahzab (the Confederates), in return for giving them one-third of the fruits of Al-Madinah. However, Sa`d bin `Ubadah and Sa`d bin Mu`adh rejected this offer and the Prophet went ahead with their advice. The Prophet also asked them if they should attack the idolators on the Day of Hudaybiyyah, and Abu Bakr disagreed, saying, “We did not come here to fight anyone. Rather, we came to perform `Umrah.” The Prophet agreed.
On the day of Ifk, (i.e. the false accusation), the Messenger of Allah said to them, “O Muslims! Give me your advice about some men who falsely accused my wife (`A’ishah). By Allah! I never knew of any evil to come from my wife. And they accused whom They accused he from whom I only knew righteous conduct, by Allah!” The Prophet asked `Ali and Usamah about divorcing `A’ishah. In summary, the Prophet used to take his Companions’ advice for battles and other important events.
Ibn Majah recorded that Abu Hurayrah said that the Prophet said;
(The one whom advice is sought from is to be entrusted) tThis was recorded by Abu Dawud, At-Tirmidhi, and An-Nasa’i who graded it Hasan.
Trust in Allah After Taking the Decision
(Then when you have taken a decision, put your trust in Allah,) means, if you conduct the required consultation and you then make a decision, trust in Allah over your decision,
(certainly, Allah loves those who put their trust (in Him)).
(If Allah helps you, none can overcome you; and if He forsakes you, who is there after Him that can help you And in Allah (Alone) let believers put their trust), is similar to His statement that we mentioned earlier,
(And there is no victory except from Allah the Almighty, the All-Wise) 3:126.
Allah next commands the believers to trust in Him,
(And in Allah (Alone) let believers put their trust).
Treachery with the Spoils of War was not a Trait of the Prophet
(It is not for any Prophet to illegally take a part of the booty,)
Ibn `Abbas, Mujahid and Al-Hasan said that the Ayah means, “It is not for a Prophet to breach the trust.” Ibn Jarir recorded that, Ibn `Abbas said that, this Ayah,
(It is not for any Prophet to illegally take a part of the booty,) was revealed in connection with a red robe that was missing from the spoils of war of Badr. Some people said that the Messenger of Allah might have taken it. When this rumor circulated, Allah sent down,
(It is not for any Prophet to illegally take a part of the booty, and whosoever is deceitful with the booty, he shall bring forth on the Day of Resurrection that which he took.)
This was also recorded by Abu Dawud and At-Tirmidhi, who said “Hasan Gharib”. This Ayah exonerates the Messenger of Allah of all types of deceit and treachery, be it returning what was entrusted with him, dividing the spoils of war, etc.
Allah then said,
(and whosoever is deceitful with the booty, he shall bring forth on the Day of Resurrection that which he took. Then every person shall be paid in full what he has earned, and they shall not be dealt with unjustly.)
This Ayah contains a stern warning and threat against Ghulul stealing from the booty, and there are also Hadiths, that prohibit such practice. Imam Ahmad recorded that Abu Malik Al-Ashja`i said that the Prophet said,
(The worst Ghulul (i.e. stealing) with Allah is a yard of land, that is, when you find two neighbors in a land or home and one of them illegally acquires a yard of his neighbor’s land. When he does, he will be tied with it from the seven earths until the Day of Resurrection.)
Imam Ahmad recorded that Abu Humayd As-Sa`idi said, “The Prophet appointed a man from the tribe of Al-Azd, called Ibn Al-Lutbiyyah, to collect the Zakah. When he returned he said, `This (portion) is for you and this has been given to me as a gift.’ The Prophet stood on the Minbar and said,
ثم رفع يديه حتى رأينا عفرة إبطيه، ثم قال:
ثلاثًا.(What is the matter with a man whom we appoint to collect Zakah, when he returns he said, `This is for you and this has been given to me as a gift.’ Why hadn’t he stayed in his father’s or mother’s house to see whether he would be given presents or not By Him in Whose Hand my life is, whoever takes anything from the resources of the Zakah (unlawfully), he will carry it on his neck on the Day of Resurrection; if it be a camel, it will be grunting; if a cow, it will be mooing; and if a sheep, it will be bleating. The Prophet then raised his hands till we saw the whiteness of his armpits, and he said thrice, `O Allah! Haven’t I conveyed Your Message.’)”
Hisham bin `Urwah added that Abu Humayd said, “I have seen him with my eyes and heard him with my ears, and ask Zayd bin Thabit.” This is recorded in the Two Sahihs .
In the book of Ahkam of his Sunan, Abu `Isa At-Tirmidhi recorded that Mu`adh bin Jabal said, “The Messenger of Allah sent me to Yemen, but when I started on the journey, he sent for me to come back and said,
(Do you know why I summoned you back Do not take anything without my permission, for if you do, it will be Ghulul.)
(and whosoever deceives his companions over the booty, he shall bring forth on the Day of Resurrection that which he took).
(This is why I summoned you, so now go and fulfill your mission.)” At-Tirmidhi said, “This Hadith is Hasan Gharib.”
In addition, Imam Ahmad recorded that Abu Hurayrah said, “The Prophet got up among us and mentioned Ghulul and emphasized its magnitude. He then said,
(I will not like to see anyone among you on the Day of Resurrection, carrying a grunting camel over his neck. Such a man will say, ‘O Allah’s Messenger! Intercede on my behalf,’ and I will say, ‘I can’t intercede for you with Allah, for I have conveyed (Allah’s Message) to you.’ I will not like to see any of you coming on the Day of Resurrection while carrying a neighing horse over his neck. Such a man will be saying, `O Allah’s Messenger! Intercede on my behalf,’ and I will reply, ‘I can’t intercede for you with Allah, for I have conveyed (Allah’s Message) to you.’ I will not like to see any of you coming on the Day of Resurrection while carrying clothes that will be fluttering, and the man will say, ‘O Allah’s Messenger! Intercede (with Allah) for me, ‘ and I will say, ‘I can’t help you with Allah, for I have conveyed (Allah’s Message) to you.’ I will not like to see any of you coming on the Day of Resurrection while carrying gold and silver on his neck. This person will say, ‘O Allah’s Messenger! Intercede (with Allah) for me.’ And I will say, ‘I can’t help you with Allah, for I have conveyed (Allah’s Message) to you.’)” This Hadith was recorded in the Two Sahihs .
Imam Ahmad recorded that `Umar bin Al-Khattab said, “During the day (battle) of Khaybar, several Companions of the Messenger of Allah came to him and said, `So-and-so died as a martyr, so-and-so died as a martyr.’ When they mentioned a certain man that died as a martyr, the Messenger of Allah said,
(No. I have seen him in the Fire because of a robe that he stole (from the booty).)
The Messenger of Allah then said,
(O Ibn Al-Khattab! Go and announce to the people that only the faithful shall enter Paradise.)
So I went out and proclaimed that none except the faithful shall enter Paradise.” This was recorded by Muslim and At-Tirmidhi, who said “Hasan Sahih”.
The Honest and Dishonest are Not Similar
(Is then one who follows (seeks) the pleasure of Allah like the one who draws on himself the wrath of Allah His abode is Hell, and worse indeed is that destination!) 3:162,
This refers to those seeking what pleases Allah by obeying His legislation, thus earning His pleasure and tremendous rewards, while being saved from His severe torment. This type of person is not similar to one who earns Allah’s anger, has no means of escaping it and who will reside in Jahannam on the Day of Resurrection, and what an evil destination it is.
There are many similar statements in the Qur’an, such as,
(Shall he then who knows that what has been revealed unto you (O Muhammad ) from your Lord is the truth be like him who is blind) 13:19, and,
(Is he whom We have promised an excellent promise (Paradise) which he will find true, like him whom We have made to enjoy the luxuries of the life of (this) world) 28:61.
Allah then said,
(They are in varying grades with Allah, ) 3:163 meaning, the people of righteousness and the people of evil are in grades, as Al-Hasan Al-Basri and Muhammad bin Ishaq said. Abu `Ubaydah and Al-Kisa’i said that this Ayah refers to degrees, meaning there are various degrees and dwellings in Paradise, as well as, various degrees and dwellings in the Fire. In another Ayah, Allah said,
(For all there will be degrees (or ranks) according to what they did) 6:132. Next, Allah said,
(and Allah is All-Seer of what they do), and He will compensate or punish them, and will never rid them of a good deed, or increase their evil deeds. Rather, each will be treated according to his deeds.
The Magnificent Blessing in the Advent of Our Prophet Muhammad
Allah the Most High said:
(Indeed Allah conferred a great favor on the believers when He sent among them a Messenger from among themselves,)
Meaning, from their own kind, so that it is possible for them to speak with him, ask him questions, associate with him, and benefit from him. Just as Allah said:
(And among His signs is that he created for them mates, that they may find rest in.)
Meaning; of their own kind. And Allah said;
(Say: “I am only a man like you. It has been revealed to me that your God is One God”) 18:110.
(And We never sent before you any of the Messengers but verily, they ate food and walked in the markets) 25:20.
(And We sent not before you any but men unto whom We revealed, from among the people of townships) 12:109, and,
(O you assembly of Jinn and mankind! “Did not there come to you Messengers from among you…”) 6:130.
Allah’s favor is perfected when His Messenger to the people is from their own kind, so that they are able to talk to him and inquire about the meanings of Allah’s Word. This is why Allah said,
(reciting unto them His verses) 3:164, the Qur’an,
(and purifying them), commanding them to do righteous works and forbidding them from committing evil. This is how their hearts will be purified and cleansed of the sin and evil that used to fill them when they were disbelievers and ignorant.
(and instructing them (in) the Book and the Hikmah,) the Qur’an and the Sunnah,
(while before that they had been), before sending this Prophet, Muhammad ,
(in manifest error. ) indulging in plain and unequivocal error and ignorance that are clear to everyone.