Discharging the Trusts

Imam Al-Nawawi’s Riyad-us-Saliheen
Chapter 25
Discharging the Trusts

Allah, the Exalted, says:

Verily! Allah commands that you should render back the trusts to those to whom they are due.” (4:58)

“Truly, We did offer Al-Amanah (the trust or moral responsibility or honesty and all the duties which Allah has ordained) to the heavens and the earth, and the mountains, but they declined to bear it and were afraid of it (i.e., afraid of Allah’s torment). But man bore it. Verily, he was unjust (to himself) and ignorant (of its results)”. (33:72)

199. Abu Hurairah (May Allah bepleased with him) reported: Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) said, “There are three signs of a hypocrite: When he speaks, he lies; when he makes a promise, he breaks it; and when he is trusted, he betrays his trust.”
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

Another narration adds the words: ‘Even if he observes fasts, performs Salat and asserts that he is a Muslim”.

200. Hudhaifah bin Al-Yaman (May Allah bepleased with him) reported: Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) foretold to us two Ahadith. I have seen one (being fulfilled), and I am waiting for the other. He (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) told us, “Amanah (the trust) descended in the innermost (root) of the hearts of men (that is, it was in their heart innately, by Fitrah, or pure human nature). Then the Qur’an was revealed and they learnt from the Quran and they learned from the Sunnah.” Then the (Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam)) told us about the removal of Amanah. He said, “The man would have some sleep, and Amanah would be taken away from his heart leaving the impression of a faint mark. He would again sleep, and Amanah would be taken away from his heart leaving an impression of a blister, as if you rolled down an ember on your foot and it was vesicled. He would see a swelling having nothing in it.” He (the Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam)) then took up a pebble and rolled it over his foot and said, “The people would enter into transactions with one another and hardly a person would be left who would return (things) entrusted to him (and there would look like an honest person) till it would be said: `In such and such tribe there is a trustworthy man.’ And they would also say about a person: `How prudent he is! How handsome he is and how intelligent he is!’ whereas in his heart there would be no grain of Faith.” Hudhaifah bin Al-Yaman (May Allah bepleased with him) added: I had a time when I did not care with whom amongst you I did business, I entered into a transaction, for if he were a Muslim, his Faith would compel him to discharge his obligation to me; and if he were a Christian or a Jew, his guardian (surety) would compel him to discharge his obligation to me. But today I would not enter into a transaction except with so-and-so.
[Al-Bukh ri and Muslim].

201. Hudhaifah and Abu Hurairah (May Allah bepleased with them) reported that they heard Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) saying, “Allah will assemble mankind, and the believers will stand till Jannah will be brought near them. They will then go to Adam (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) and say, `O our father, ask (Allah (SWT), that Jannah may be opened for us, but he will reply: `There was nothing that put you out of Jannah except your father’s sin. I am not the one to do that, go to my son Ibrahim (Abraham), the beloved man of Allah.’ Then Ibrahim (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) when approached, will say: `I am not the one to do that, for I was only a friend; and that is not a lofty status but ask Musa (Moses) to whom Allah spoke.’ They will then go to Musa (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) but he will say: `I am not the one to do that; go to `Isa (Jesus), Allah’s Word and spirit.’ `Isa (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) will say: `I am not the one to do that.’ So they will come to me; and I will stand and be given permission. Amanah and ties of relationship will be sent forth and will stand on the sides of the Sirat (that is, the Bridge set over Hell-fire) right and left, and the first of you will pass like lightning.” I said (that is Abu Hurairah (May Allah bepleased with him)” :I ransom you with my father and mother, what is like the movement of lightning?” The Messenger of Allah replied, “Have you not seen how the lightning goes and returns in the twinkling of an eye? Next (group will pass) like the passing of the breeze, next like the passing of a bird, and the next with the speed of a running man, according to the quality of their deeds. (During all this time) your Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) will remain standing on the Bridge saying: `O my Rubb, keep (them) safe, keep (them) safe,’ till men’s deeds are so weak that a man comes who will be able only to crawl. On both sides of the Bridge pronged flesh hooks, placed under command will be hung and will seize those about whom they receive command, some people being lacerated and escaping and others being thrown violently into Hell.” Abu Hurairah added: By Him in Whose Hand Abu Hurairah’s soul is, the pit of Jahannam (Hell) is seventy years in depth.
[Muslim].

202. Abu Khubaib `Abdullah bin Az-Zubair (May Allah bepleased with them) reported: When Az-Zubair, got ready to fight in the battle of Al-Jamal, he called me and said: “My son, whoever is killed today will be either a wrongdoer or a wronged one. I expect that I shall be the the wronged one today. I am much worried about my debt. Do you think that anything will be left over from our property after the payment of my debt? My son, sell our property and pay off my debt.” Az-Zubair then willed one-third of that portion to his sons; namely `Abdullah’s sons. He said, “One-third of the one-third. If any property is left after the payment of debts, one-third (of the one-third of what is left is to be given to your sons.” (Hisham, a subnarrator added: “Some of the sons of `Abdullah were equal in age to the sons of Az-Zubair, e.g., Khubaib and Abbad. `Abdullah had nine sons and nine daughters at that time)”. (The narrator `Abdullah added:) He kept on instructing me about his debts and then said: “My son, should you find yourself unable to pay any portion of my debt then beseech my Master for His help.” By Allah, I did not understand what he meant and asked: “Father, who is your Master?” He said: “Allah.” By Allah! Whenever I faced a difficulty in discharging any portion of his debt; I would pray: “O Master of Zubair, discharge his debt,” and He discharged it. Zubair was martyred. He left no money, but he left certain lands, one of them in Al-Ghabah, eleven houses in Al-Madinah, two in Basrah, one in Kufah and one in Egypt. The cause of his indebtedness was that a person would come to him asking him to keep some money of his in trust for him. Zubair would refuse to accept it as a trust, fearing it might be lost, but would take it as a loan. He never accepted a governorship, or revenue office, or any public office. He fought along with Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) and Abu Bakr, `Umar and `Uthman (May Allah be pleased with them).

`Abdullah added: I prepared a statement of his debts and they amounted to two million and two hundred thousand! Hakim bin Hizam met me and asked me: “Nephew, how much is due from my brother as debt?” I kept it as secret and said: “A hundred thousand.” Hakim said: “By Allah! I do not think your assets are sufficient for the payment of these debts.” I said: “What would you think if the amount were two million and two hundred thousand?” He said: “I do not think that you would be able to clear off the debts. If you find it difficult let me know.”

Az-Zubair (May Allah bepleased with him) had purchased the land in Al-Ghabah for a hundred and seventy thousand. `Abdullah sold it for a million and six hundred thousand, and declared that whosoever had a claim against Az-Zubair (May Allah bepleased with him) should see him in Al-Ghabah. `Abdullah bin Ja`far (May Allah bepleased with him) came to him and said: “Az-Zubair (May Allah bepleased with him) owed me four hundred thousand, but I would remit the debt if you wish.” `Abdullah (May Allah bepleased with him) said: “No.” Ibn Ja`far said: “If you would desire for postponement I would postpone the recovery of it.” `Abdullah said: “No.” Ibn Ja`far then said: “In that case, measure out a plot for me.” `Abdullah marked out a plot. Thus he sold the land and discharged his father’s debt. There remained out of the land four and a half shares. He then visited Mu`awiyah who had with him at the time `Amr bin `Uthman, Al-Mundhir bin Az-Zubair and Ibn Zam`ah (May Allah bepleased with them). Mu`awiyah (May Allah bepleased with him) said: “What price did you put on the land in Al-Ghabah?” He said: “One hundred thousand for a each share. Mu`awiyah inquired: “How much of it is left?” `Abdullah said: “Four and a half shares.” Al-Mundhir bin Az-Zubair said: “I will buy one share for a hundred thousand”. `Amr bin `Uthman said: “I will buy one share for a hundred thousand”. Ibn Zam`ah said: “I will buy one share for a hundred thousand.” Then Mu`awiyah asked: “How much of it is now left?” `Abdullah said: “One and a half share. Mu`awiyah said: “I will take it for one hundred and fifty thousand.” Later `Abdullah bin Ja`far sold his share to Mu`awiyah for six hundred thousand.

When `Abdullah bin Az-Zubair (May Allah bepleased with him) finished the debts, the heirs of Az-Zubair (May Allah bepleased with him) asked him to distribute the inheritance among them. He said: “I will not do that until I announce during four successive Hajj seasons: `Let he who has a claim against Az-Zubair come forward and we shall discharge it.”’ He made this declaration on four Hajj seasons and then distributed the inheritance among the heirs of Az-Zubair (May Allah bepleased with him) according to his will. Az-Zubair (May Allah bepleased with him) had four wives. Each of them received a million and two hundred thousand. Thus Az-Zubair’s total property was amounted to fifty million and two hundred thousand.
[Al-Bukhari]

The Fruits of Putting one’s Trust in Allaah : Shaykh Saalih Al-Fawzaan

Haqeeqat-ut-Tawakkul (pg. 35-42) – Al-Ibaanah.com

As for the fruits of putting one’s trust in Allaah (i.e. tawakkul), then they are many. The greatest of them is that Allaah will suffice him in whatever he seeks after. “And whoever puts his trust in Allaah, He will suffice him.” [Surah At-Talaaq: 3]

So whoever relegates his affairs to Allaah, relies on Him alone, and believes that no one can give him good or repel harm from him except Allaah, “He will suffice him.”

This means that Allaah will protect him from all harms since the recompense is based on the action a person does. So when someone puts his trust in Allaah in the correct manner, He rewards him by sufficing him and taking charge of his affairs. Allaah Himself takes charge of this individual’s affairs and does not relegate it to anyone else. This is the greatest fruit of tawakkul (reliance upon Allaah).

Allaah says: “O Prophet, Allaah is sufficient for you.” [Surah Al-Anfaal: 64]

And He says: “And if they intend to deceive you, then verily Allaah is sufficient for you. It is He who supported you with His help and with the believers.” [Surah Al-Anfaal: 62]

So in summary: The greatest fruit of putting one’s trust in Allaah is that Allaah will suffice and take care of whoever relies in Him. This is why Allaah informs us of His Prophet Nooh when he told his people: “If my staying with you and my reminding you of the verses of Allaah are hard on you, then I put my trust in Allaah. So devise your plot – you and your partners – and let not your plot be in doubt for you. Then pass your sentence on me and give me no respite.” [Surah Yoonus: 71]

And He quotes His Prophet Hood as saying: “I am free from that which you ascribe as partners in worship apart from Him. So plot against me – all of you – and give me no respite. I put my trust in Allaah, my Lord and your Lord. There is not a creature that moves (i.e. lives) except that He has a grasp of its forelock. Verily, my Lord is on a Straight Path.” [Surah Hood: 54-56]

He quotes His Prophet Shu’aib as saying: “And my guidance is only due to Allaah. In Him I trust and to Him I repent.” [Surah Hood: 88]

And He said to His Prophet Muhammad: “Call your associates and then plot against me and give me no respite. Verily, my Protector is Allaah who has revealed the Book. He is the One who protects the righteous. And those whom you call upon besides Him cannot help you nor can they help themselves.” [Surah Al-A’raaf: 195-197]

Allaah informs us through the statements of these noble messengers that they challenged their people and their false deities to bring harm to them in some way. They did this because they had complete reliance on Allaah. And whoever puts his trust in Allaah, He will be sufficient for him.

Another fruit of relying upon Allaah is that it brings about loves from Allaah, as He says: “Verily, Allaah loves those who put their trust in Him.” [Surah Aali ‘Imraan: 159]

So if someone truthfully puts his trust in Allaah, Allaah will love him. And if Allaah loves this person, he will find success and happiness in this life and the next since he will be from among Allaah’s friends and allies.

Also from the fruits of putting one’s trust in Allaah is that a person will proceed in doing beneficial things and not fear or dread anyone except Allaah. So for example, those who are engaged in Jihaad by way of fighting battles against disbelievers – they only do so because they put their trust in Allaah. So in turn, this reliance on Allaah instills courage and strength into them and as a result, all of the hardships and difficulties that face them become lessened. And they take delight in dying in the Way of Allaah and attaining martyrdom in His Cause. All of this is due to their reliance and trust in Allaah.

Another fruit of putting one’s trust in Allaah is that it encourages one to go out and seek sustenance or to acquire knowledge or to do any of the other beneficial things. The one who puts his trust in Allaah perseveres and puts his heart into seeking after the useful and necessary means of life because he knows that Allaah is with those who rely on Him and that He will aid them. So he perseveres in seeking after all of the beneficial things of this life and the Hereafter and he is not from those who are lazy and weak.

It is for this reason that the Companions were the bravest of people. They genuinely put their trust and reliance in Allaah to the point that they were able to conquer lands in the east and the west. They conquered lands through victory in battle and conquered hearts through calling them to Allaah. All of this was because they put their trust in Allaah and because they relied on Him. Allaah says: “O you who believe, whoever amongst you apostates from his religion, Allaah will bring a people whom He will love and they will love Him, humble towards the believers and stern towards the disbelievers, fighting in the Cause of Allaah and never fearing the blame of the blamers. That is the Grace of Allaah which He bestows upon whom He wills. And Allaah is All-Sufficient for His creatures’ needs, All-Knowing.” [Surah Al-Maa’idah: 54]

So they didn’t fear for the sake of Allaah the blame of the blamers since they relied on Him to the utmost degree and entrusted their affairs in Him absolutely. They did not turn to anyone else regardless if the people were content or discontent with it, so long as they continued to do what was pleasing to Allaah. It is stated in the hadeeth: “Whoever seeks to please Allaah by (doing something that is) displeasing (to) the people, Allaah becomes pleased with him and makes the people pleased with him. And whoever seeks to please the people by (doing something that is) displeasing (to) Allaah, Allaah becomes displeased with him and makes the people displeased with him.” [1]

So relying upon Allaah, putting one’s trust in Him, and entrusting one’s affairs to Him is the foundation of Tawheed. It is the foundation of actions. And it is the foundation of goodness. This is why Allaah made it a condition of Faith, where He says: “So in Allaah put your trust if you are truly believers.” [Surah Al-Maa’idah: 23]

There still remains one issue related to this topic, which we would like to discuss, and it is the issue of tawkeel, or delegating authority to someone else. If you entrust someone to obtain something for you, such as buying a product for you or renting something for you or litigating on your behalf, does this mean that you have put your trust in someone other than Allaah? No, this does not mean that. Choosing someone to represent you and act on your behalf is not tawakkul.

Tawakkul means complete reliance and relegation of one’s affairs, which cannot be done except on Allaah.

As for tawkeel, it is when you appoint someone else to obtain something permissible that you are looking for, which he has the ability to obtain. This is one of the allowable means. So hire a representative from the perspective of implementing the means and put your trust in Allaah when obtaining your objective from the perspective of worship. But do not put your trust (tawakkul) in this representative. Instead put your trust in Allaah.

So therefore, commissioning someone else to handle some of your affairs does not violate your creed nor does it mean that you are putting your trust in someone other than Allaah. It is merely working hand in hand with someone towards achieving an objective. Allaah says: “Assist one another in (matters of) piety and righteousness and do not assist one another in sin and transgression.” [Surah Al-Maa’idah: 2]

So a wakeel (representative) is only there to assist an individual by taking his place and serving as a means to get what he wants. In the same way that him doing something on his own constitutes a means, then likewise, his commissioning a representative to handle his affairs is also a means. And it does not fall under the realm of putting one’s trust in other than Allaah.

In conclusion, I ask Allaah to make us and you from those who put their trust in Allaah in truth – those who implement the required means and rely upon their Lord, those who do not rely on anyone else nor entrust their affairs to anyone else. May Allaah send the peace and praises on our Prophet, Muhammad, his family and all of his Companions.

Footnotes:

[1] Reported by Ibn Hibbaan in his Saheeh (1/435) and At-Tirmidhee in his Sunan (7/133) in a similar narration, both on the authority of ‘Aa’ishah; Others reported it as well.

Published on: August 5, 2007

"Whoever takes an oath by al-Amaanah (the trust), then he is not from us"

From Buraydah (radiyAllaahu ‘anhu) who said that the Messenger of Allaah ( peace be upon him) said,

((Whoever takes an oath by al-Amaanah (the trust), then he is not from us)).

Reported by Aboo Daawud, no. 3253 with an authentic chain, authenticated by ash-Shaykh al-Albaanee in as-Saheehah, no. 94, and also authenticated by ash-Shaykh Muqbil in al-Jaami’ as-Saheeh 1/291.

Regarding the third hadeeth of Buraydah, Shaykh Ahmed mentioned that this great test and tribulation has affected the general people in the lands of the Muslims, such that they have become accustomed to this (i.e. swearing by al-Amaanah), and it has become widespread on their tongues to swear by al-Amaanah. And the trust (al-Amaanah) is a great thing to them, and they use as a proof for their action of this the statement of Allaah (subhaana wa ta’aalaa):

Truly, We did offer AlAmaanah (the trust or moral responsibility or honesty and all the duties which Allaah has ordained) to the heavens and the earth, and the mountains, but they declined to bear it and were afraid of it (i.e. afraid of Allaah’s Torment). But man bore it. Verily, he was unjust (to himself) and ignorant (of itsresults). (Al-Ahzaab 33:72)

And Shaykh Ahmed mentioned that in this verse is the affirmation that al-Amaanah, the trust, isa great thing. A great thing which Allaah (subhaana wa ta’aalaa) has sent down upon the creation. A thing which mankind took and bore it. But if the person who swears by al-Amaanah is asked what is greater than al-Amaanah, he would say: ‘Allaah (subhaana wa ta’aalaa).’ So why not swear by Allaah (subhaana wa ta’aalaa), who is greater than all things, and he is the One who is entitled to glorification. And the promise of punishment that the Prophet ( peace be upon him) mentioned for the one who swears by al-Amaanah is that ‘he is not from us,’ which means that he is not from our path, our clear path and Manhaj (way /methodology).

And it is upon the person who due to accustom and habitual habits finds himself swearing by al-Amaanah, it is upon him to take note and to be careful of what comes out of his tongue, and that he must be truthful in his swearing, and that he must swear only by Allaah (subhaana wa ta’aalaa).

And in regards to being truthful when swearing, the shaykh mentioned the hadeeth of Ibn Mas’ood (radiyAllaahu ‘anhu): The Prophet ( peace be upon him ) said, “Whoever swears falsely in order to grab the property of a Muslim (or of his brother), Allaah will be angry with him when he meets Him.” Reported by al-Bukhaaree, no. 6238.

This Post Extracted from:
Lessons on Tawhid – Approximately 50 Classes – from Dar-ul-Hadith, Dammaj, Yemen
Class 31 : January – 21 – 06 – The Prohibition of Swearing by Other Than Allaah