Chapter: The Statement of Allah Taa’la: “And Ayyub, when he cried to his Lord…”
Volume 4, Book 55, Number 604 :
Narrated by Abu Huraira (radiallaahu `anhu)
The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) said, “While Job was naked, taking a bath, a swarm of gold locusts fell on him and he started collecting them in his garment. His Lord called him, ‘O Job! Have I not made you rich enough to need what you see? He said, ‘Yes, O Lord! But I cannot dispense with your Blessing.”‘
The Story of Prophet Ayyub [Job]
Ibn Ishaaq stated that he was a man of Rum. His names was Job Ibn Mose Ibn Razeh Ibn Esau Ibn Isaac Ibn Abraham. Someone else said he was Job Ibn Mose, Ibn Rimil Ibn Esau Ibn Isaac Ibn Jacob. There have also been other statements in his lineage. Ibn Asaker narrated that his mother was a daughter of Prophet Lot.It was said, also, that his father was one who believed in Abraham when he was cast into the fire.
The first opinion is the most plausible as he was a descendant of Abraham’s offspring as Allah Almighty declared:
“That was the reasoning about Us which We gave to Abraham (to use) against his people: We raise whom We will degree after degree: for thy Lord is full of wisdom and knowledge. We gave him Isaac and Jacob: all (three) We guided: and before him We guided Noah and before him We guided Noah and among his progeny David Solomon Job Joseph Moses and Aaron: thus do We reward those who do good” Quran 6:83-84
Allah the Almighty praised His worshipper Job in His Glorious Quran:
“Truly! We found him patient. How excellent a slave! Verily, he was ever oft-returning in repentance to Us” Quran 38:44
Job was repentant, remembering Allah with thankfulness, patience and steadfastness. This was the cause of his rescue and the secret of Allah’s praising him.
A group of angels were discussing Allah’s other human creatures, how those who were humble earned Allah’s displease, while those who were arrogant incurred His displeasure. One of the angels remarked:
“The best creature on earth today is Job, a man of noble character who displays excellent patience and always remembers his Generous Lord. He is an excellent model for the worshippers of Allah. In return, his Lord has blessed him with a long life and plenty of riches, yet he is never haughty or selfish. His family, his servants, as well as the needy and the poor share in his good fortune; he feeds and clothes the poor and buys slaves to set them free. He makes those who receive his charity feel as if they are favoring him, so kind and gentle is he.”
Iblis, overhearing all this, became annoyed. He planned to tempt Job to corruption and disbelief, so he hastened to him. He tried to distract Job from his prayers by whispering to him about the good things in life, but Job was a true believer and would not let evil thoughts tempt him. This disturbed Iblis more; thus he began to hate Job even more.
Iblis complained to Allah about Job. He said that although he was continuously glorifying Allah, he was not doing so out of his sincerity but to satisfy Allah so that his wealth should not be taken away. It was all a show, all out of greed. “If You remove his wealth then You will find that his tongue will no longer mention Your name and his praying will stop.”
Allah told Iblis that Job was one of His most sincere devotees. He did not worship Him because of the favors; his worship stemmed from his heart and had nothing to do with material things. But to prove Iblis the depth of Job’ s sincerity and patience, Allah allowed him to do whatever he and his helpers wished with Job’s wealth.
Iblis was very happy. He gathered his helpers and set about destroying Job’s cattle, servants, and farms until he was left with no possessions. Rubbing his hands in glee, Iblis appeared before Job in the guise of a wise old man and said to him:
“All your wealth is lost. Some people say that it is because you gave too much charity and that you are wasting your time with your continuous prayers to Allah. Others say that Allah has bought this upon you in order to please your enemies. If Allah had the capacity to prevent harm, then He would have protected your wealth”
True to his belief, Job replied:
“What Allah has taken away from me belongs to Him. I was only its trustee for a while. He gives to whom He wills and withholds from whom He wills”
With these words, Job again prostrated to his Lord.
When Iblis saw this, he felt frustrated, so he again addressed Allah:
“I have stripped Job of all his possessions, but he still remains grateful to You. However, he is only hiding his disapointment, for he places great store by his many children. The real test of a parent is through him children. You will then see how Job will reject You”
Allah granted Iblis authority, but warned him that it would not reduce Job’s faith in his Lord nor his patience.
Iblis again gathered his helpers and set about his evil deeds. He shook the foundation of the house in which Job’s children were living and sent the building crashing, killing all of them. Then he went to Job disguised as a man who had come to sympathize with him. In a comforting tone he said to Job:
“The circumstances under which your children died were sad. Surely, your Lord is not rewarding you properly for all your prayers?”
Having said this Iblis waited anxiously, hoping Job was now ready to reject Allah. But again Job disapointed him by replying:
“Allah sometimes gives and sometimes takes. He is sometimes pleased and sometimes displeased with our deeds. Whether a thing is beneficial or harmful to me, I will remain firm in my belief and remain thankful to my Creator”
Then Job prostrated to his Lord. At this Iblis was extremely vexed. Iblis again called on Allah:
“O my Lord, Job’s wealth is gone, his children are dead, but he is still healthy in body, and as long as he enjoys good health he will continue to worship You in the hope of regaining his wealth and producing more children. Grant me authority over his body so that I may weaken it. He will surely neglect worshipping You and with thus becomes disobedient”
Allah wanted to teach Iblis a lesson that Job was a devoted servant of his Lord, so He granted Iblis his third request but placed a condition:
“I give you authority over his body but not over his soul, intellect, or heart, for in these places reside the knowledge of Me and My religion”
Armed with this new authority, Iblis began to take revenge on Job’s body and filled it with disease until it was reduced to mere skin and bone and he suffered severe pain. But through all the suffering Job remained string in his faith, patiently bearing all the hardships without complaining. Allah’s righteous servant did not despair or turn to others for help but remained hopeful of Allah’s Mercy. Even close relatives and friends deserted him. Only his kind loving wife stayed with him. In his hour of need, she showered her kindness on him and cared for him. She remained his sole companion and comforter through many years of his suffering.
Ibn Asaker narrated:
“Job was a man having much wealth of all kinds: beasts, slaves, sheep, vast lands of Haran and many children. All those favors were taken from him and he was physically afflicted as well. Never a single organ was sound except his heart and tongue, with both of which he glorified Allah, the Almighty all the time day and night. His disease lasted for a long time until his visitors felt disgusted with him. His friend kept away from him, and people abstained from visiting him. No one felt sympathy for him except his wife. She took good care of him, knowing his former charity and pity for her”
Therefore, Iblis became desperate. He consulted his helpers but they could not advise him. They asked:
“How is it that your cleverness cannot work against Job, yet you succeeded in misleading Adam, the father of man, out of paradise?”
Iblis went to Job’s wife in the form of a man. “Where is your husband?” he asked her.
She pointed to an almost lifeless form crumpled on the bed and said: “There he is, suspended between life and death.”
Iblis reminded her of the days when Job had good health, wealth and children. Suddenly, the painful memory of yeas of hardship overcame her, and she burst into tears. She said to Job:
“How long are you going to bear this torture from our Lord? Are we to remain without wealth, children or friends forever? Why don’t you call upon Allah to remove this suffering?”
Job sighed, and in a soft voice replied:
“Iblis must have whispered to you and made you dissatisfied. Tell me, how long did I enjoy good health and riches?”
She replied, “For eighty years”
Then Job asked, “How long am I suffering like this?”
She said, “for seven years”
Then Job told her:
“In that case I am ashamed to call on my Lord to remove the hardship, for I have not suffered longer than the years of good health and plenty. It seems your faith has weakened and you are dissatisfied with the fate of Allah. If I ever regain health, I swear I will punish you with a hundred strokes! From this day onward, I forbid myself to eat or drink anything from your hand. Leave me alone and let my Lord do with me as He pleases.”
Crying bitterly and with a heavy heart, she had no choice but to leave him and seek shelter elsewhere. In his helpless state, Job turned to Allah, not to complain but to seek His mercy:
“Verily, distress has seized me, and You and the Most Merciful of all those who show Mercy. So We answered his call, and We removed the distress that was on him, and We restored his family to him (that he had lost) and the like thereof along with them – as a mercy from Ourselves and a Reminder for all who worship Us”
Almighty Allah also instructed:
“Commemorate Our servant Job behold he cried to his Lord: “The Evil One has afflicted me with distress and suffering”! (The command was given:) “Strike with thy foot: here is (water) wherein to wash cool and refreshing and (water) to drink.” And We gave him (back) his people and doubled their number as a Grace from Ourselves and a thing for commemoration for all who have Understanding.” Quran 38:41-43
Job obeyed, and almost immediately his good health was restored. Meanwhile, his faithful wife could no longer bear to be parted from her husband and returned to beg his forgiveness, desiring to serve him. On entering he house, she was amazed at the sudden change: Job was again healthy! She embraced him and thanked Allah for His mercy.
Job was now worried, for he had taken an oath to punish her with a hundred strokes if he regained health, but he had no desire to hurt her. He knew if he did not fulfill the oath, he would be guilty of breaking a promise to Allah. Therefore, in His wisdom and mercy, Allah came to the assistance of His faithful servant, and advised him:
“And take in your hand a bundle of thin grass and strike therewith (your wife), and break not your oath. Truly we found him patient. How excellent a slave! Verily, he was ever oft-returning in repentance to Us” Quran 38:44
Abu Huraira (ra) narrated that the Prophet Muhammed (pbuh) said: “While Job was naked, taking a bath, a swarm of locusts fell on him, and he started collecting them in his garment. His Lord called him: ‘O Job! Have I not made you too rich to need what you see?’ He said: ‘Yes, O Lord! But I cannot shun Your Blessings” (Bukhari).
Narrated Abu Wail from Hudhaifa (radiallaahu `anhu):
Umar (radiallaahu `anhu) asked the people, “Who remembers the narration of the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) about the affliction?” Hudhaifa (radiallaahu `anhu) said, “I heard the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) saying, ‘The affliction of a person in his property, family and neighbors is expiated by his prayers, fasting, and giving in charity.” ‘Umar (radiallaahu `anhu) said, “I do not ask about that, but I ask about those afflictions which will spread like the waves of the sea.” Hudhaifa (radiallaahu `anhu) replied, “There is a closed gate in front of those afflictions.” ‘Umar (radiallaahu `anhu) asked, “Will that gate be opened or broken?” He replied, “It will be broken.” ‘Umar (radiallaahu `anhu) said, “Then the gate will not be closed again till the Day of Resurrection.” We said to Masruq, “Would you ask Hudhaifa (radiallaahu `anhu) whether ‘Umar (radiallaahu `anhu) knew what that gate symbolized?” He asked him and he replied “He (‘Umar (radiallaahu `anhu)) knew it as one knows that there will be night before tomorrow morning.
Talking about the first part of the Hadith, we know that one’s wealth and family is a trial as Allah says:
إِنَّمَا أَمْوَالُكُمْ وَأَوْلَادُكُمْ فِتْنَةٌ
“Your wealth and your children are only a trial..” [At-Taghabun: 15]
We’re tested by our wealth in the ways we earn it and spend it, and family tests us for the amount of time we spend with them and the way we spend it. Also, we’re tested in our priorities – whether we put Allah before our loved ones or not..
Being human, we always falter. There are shortcomings no matter how hard we try. To make up for those, we can pray extra nawafil (voluntary prayers), keep nafil fasts and give more in charity as suggested by the Hadith above. In doing so, we’ll be offering expiation for our sins and faults committed when it came to wealth and family. InshaAllah.
Narrated Abu Said Al-Khudri (radiallaahu `anhu):
Once the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) sat on a pulpit and we sat around him. Then he said, “The things I am afraid of most for your sake (concerning what will befall you after me) is the pleasures and splendors of the world and its beauties which will be disclosed to you.” Somebody said, “O Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam)! Can the good bring forth evil?” The Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) remained silent for a while. It was said to that person, “What is wrong with you? You are talking to the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) while he is not talking to you.” Then we noticed that he was being inspired divinely. Then the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) wiped off his sweat and said, “Where is the questioner?” It seemed as if the Prophet liked his question. Then he said, “Good never brings forth evil. Indeed it is like what grows on the banks of a water-stream which either kill or make the animals sick, except if an animal eats its fill the Khadira (a kind of vegetable) and then faces the sun, and then defecates and urinates and grazes again. No doubt this wealth is sweet and green. Blessed is the wealth of a Muslim from which he gives to the poor, the orphans and to needy travelers. (Or the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) said something similar to it) No doubt, whoever takes it illegally will be like the one who eats but is never satisfied, and his wealth will be a witness against him on the Day of Resurrection.”
Why was the Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) afraid about pleasures, splendors and beauties of this world being disclosed to us believers? Simple. These things are trials. Temptations, very hard to resist. One goes through a major test of Imaan while dealing with them. You falter, you lose. So Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam), being our well-wisher, was worried about us being afflicted with trials. One more reason to love him (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam)!
Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) gives an example of an animal who eats a lot, and from everywhere. It eats so much that it either dies because of overeating or becomes really sick – harms itself.
Then there’s another animal who eats according to need, utilizes it, digests and gets rid of it. Remains healthy and fit.
Contentedness is the word. We need to learn to lead a balanced lifestyle. To not go blindly after wealth – the beauties and temptations of this world. To not forget the difference between haraam and halaal – harmful and beneficial – while fulfilling the desire to acquire and accumulate wealth. Because the person who acquires it from everywhere and anywhere harms himself. Whereas the person who takes from this world as per need, utilizes it, and then takes again according to need, is the one who actually benefits. He does not harm himself by taking the haraam route. He gives of his wealth in charity that purifies it. He’s contented with what he has. So he does not take others’ share by force, lest that wealth becomes witness against him on the Day of Judgement. He’s fit and healthy. He’s the one we should strive to become like. He’s the one Prophet (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) praised.
Today’s Hadith is a real eye-opener. Read very carefully and learn your lesson!
Narrated Jabir bin Samura:
The People of Kufa complained against Sa’d to ‘Umar and the latter dismissed him and appointed ‘Ammar as their chief . They lodged many complaints against Sa’d and even they alleged that he did not pray properly. ‘Umar sent for him and said, “O Aba Ishaq! These people claim that you do not pray properly.” Abu Ishaq said, “By Allah, I used to pray with them a prayer similar to that of Allah’s Apostle and I never reduced anything of it. I used to prolong the first two Rakat of ‘Isha prayer and shorten the last two Rakat.” ‘Umar said, “O Aba Ishaq, this was what I thought about you.” And then he sent one or more persons with him to Kufa so as to ask the people about him. So they went there and did not leave any mosque without asking about him. All the people praised him till they came to the mosque of the tribe of Bani ‘Abs; one of the men called Usama bin Qatada with a surname of Aba Sa’da stood up and said, “As you have put us under an oath; I am bound to tell you that Sa’d never went himself with the army and never distributed (the war booty) equally and never did justice in legal verdicts.” (On hearing it) Sa’d said, “I pray to Allah for three things: O Allah! If this slave of yours is a liar and got up for showing off, give him a long life, increase his poverty and put him to trials.” (And so it happened). Later on when that person was asked how he was, he used to reply that he was an old man in trial as the result of Sa’d’s curse. ‘Abdul Malik, the sub narrator, said that he had seen him afterwards and his eyebrows were over-hanging his eyes owing to old age and he used to tease and assault the small girls in the way.
Looking at the whole narration, I don’t understand why anyone wanted to get Sa`d/Abu Ishaq dismissed from chieftain. It’s one thing to have personal grudges against a person, but to humiliate them publicly and spreading false rumors about them is just WRONG!
But Allah helps His slaves. Sa`d prayed to Allah to bring out the truth (because Abu Sa`da had taken an oath while saying what he said about Sa`d). And Allah accepted his prayer. Abu Sa`da was cursed. And reading about his last days is giving me the chills! He couldn’t help himself. Being old, poor and still teasing/assaulting ‘small girls’ he saw on the way. May Allah not make us from among those who have long lives and are put to trials. :(
Don’t let people curse you. As in, don’t give them the reason to do so. And avoid cursing others! If they don’t deserve it, it’ll come back to you. True story.
Narrated ‘Abdullah bin ‘Abi Qatada:
My father said, “The Prophet said, ‘When I stand for prayer, I intend to prolong it but on hearing the cries of a child, I cut it short, as I dislike to trouble the child’s mother.’ “
Narrated Anas bin Malik:
I never prayed behind any Imam a prayer lighter and more perfect than that behind the Prophet and he used to cut short the prayer whenever he heard the cries of a child lest he should put the child’s mother to trial.
Narrated Anas bin Malik:
The Prophet said, “When I start the prayer I intend to prolong it, but on hearing the cries of a child, I cut short the prayer because I know that the cries of the child will incite its mother’s passions.”
Hadith no. 678 as above.
When a child cries, what happens to a mother? I can hardly imagine, but observation is my teacher. Mothers can’t bear their child crying. They’ll do everything to stop their pain.
When the mother is praying and the child starts crying, the mother will be distracted from prayer. To make it easy for her, Prophet (SAW) used to shorten the prayer. The whole congregation got affected, only to facilitate a mother. And you say women don’t have rights in Islam? Pshh!