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['Aalim Network QR] Forgiveness


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|       In the Name of Allah, the Compassionate, the All-Merciful       |\
|  Greeting of Allah be upon Muhammad and the pure members of his House |\
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Assalamu 'alaykum
The following question was answered by Shaykh Mustafa Jaffer

Salaams & Duas
Ummulbanin Merali - Moderator - 'Aalim Network
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QUESTION:

I have a question concerning Allah (s.w.t)'s all - encompassing mercy 
and forgiveness.  In the qur'an aswell as in hadith, there are numerous 
example of Allah(s.w.t)'s mercy.  We are told that when we committ sins 
and turn to Allah(s.w.t) in true repentance we are forgiven.  What I 
often wonder is does this mean we will now no longer have to be 
punished for these sins?  We are also repeated told that everyone 
will receive due recompense for every atom of good and every atom of 
bad that they have done.  If we are to be forgiven, then this would 
imply no punishment, but, on the other hand how can any sin go 
unpunished?  
Additionally, often in maj'lis there are examples of groups of people 
who are forgiven due to the goodness of one person, ie. azhaab that 
was coming down in a khabrastan was stopped because a lady who was 
buried there was so true in her faith that all others were forgiven 
as well, what are we to make of these examples...?
I also feel that it may be a sin in itself to doubt Allah(s.w.t)'s mercy,
if we question his all encompassing mercy and forgiveness.



ANSWER:

Sins are of three kinds - Those between the perpetrator and himself or
herself like overeating, oversleeping, etc.
There are those that are between the perpetrator and other human beings
like backbiting, cheating, etc. and then there those that are between the
perpetraot and Allah. 

Forgiveness is an opportunity through which we cancancel the effects of our
past actions. Thus, if we seek forgiveness and Allah accepts it, then there
will be no punishment for that sin. However, there is the condition of
acceptance which will always remain a mystery to us (well, at least until
we die).

There are many Ahadith that say that our attempts to seek forgiveness stand
a better chance of being accepted by the Almighty if we further resolve
never to repeat and we practically never repeat the sins.

These are for sins between the perpetrator and Allah. As for those
perpetrated against human beings, then, as in the case of backbiting,
forgiveness from the victim must be sought and thereafter forgiveness from
Allah be sought.

Wa Minallaahit Tawfiq

Mustaf Jaffer





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