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Of The Fruits Of Fasting

EsinIslam Ramadan Explorer

Sheikh Mahmoud Gharib Al Shirbiny

All praise be to Allah and peace be upon His Messenger, his family, his Companions, and those who follow their guidance.

Fasting, which the Lord (Glory be to Him) ordained in the month of Ramadan, has many fruits. Allah (Glorified and Exalted be He) ordained on the tongue of His Prophet the fasting of some other days after or before Ramadan so that man would obtain these fruits in Ramadan and thereafter.

Of these fruits of fasting is: Fasting strengthens the will, reforms oneself, erases sins, increases good deeds, raises degrees, the fasting person shall enter from Ar-Rayyan gate, and fasting shall intercede for him. Fasting cures the body and draws a servant nearer to his Lord until he ascertains the fear of Allah.

The Lord (Glory be to Him) commanded us to worship Him alone to reach the highest goal which is to fear Allah: "O mankind! Worship your Lord (Allâh), Who created you and those who were before you so that you may become Al Muttaqűn (the pious)." [Surat Al Baqarah: 21].

Allah (Glory be to Him) singled out a believer with that noble and high degree [i.e., piety] when he observes fasting, so piety or fearing Allah is one of the greatest fruits of fasting.

Let's speak about fasting in details:

1- Fasting grows piety in the hearts: Allah (Glory be to Him) says: "O you who believe! Observing As-Saum (the fast) is prescribed for you as it was prescribed for those before you, that you may become Al Muttaqűn (the pious)." [Surat Al Baqarah: 183].

Piety is: Fearing the Ever-Majestic, acting according to the Book of Allah, satisfying with the little, and preparing oneself to the Day of leave [i.e., death].) Or piety is: To act in accordance with the obedience of Allah by the light of Allah for the sake of His Reward, and to keep away from disobeying Allah for fear of His Punishment.

The way of piety is Ihsan and the meaning of Ihsan is to worship Allah as if you are seeing Him, but if you cannot see Him, be sure He sees you.

Fasting is leaving out lawful matters in a fixed time in response to the commands of Allah and hastening to seek His Pleasure. There is no one can see the truthfulness of a person except Allah, so it is an act of worship to Allah: "As if you are seeing Him" which delivers to Ihsan which is the way of ascertaining piety.

2- A fasting person shall take his reward without rendering an account: Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated that the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: Allah (may He be Glorified and Exalted) said: "Every act of the son of Adam is for him: One good deed equals ten good deeds to seven hundredfold. Allah said: Except for fasting which is its reward is left for me and it is I am who rewards with it. A person leaves food for My Sake, leaves drink for My Sake, leaves his desires for My Sake, leaves his wife for My Sake, Indeed, the bad odor of the mouth of a fasting person is sweeter in the sight of Allah than the odor of musk. A fasting person has two joys: A joy when he breaks his fast and a joy when he meets his Lord." [Reported by Al Bukhari, Muslim, and Ibn Khuzaymah with his own wordings].

3- Fasting a day for the sake of Allah keeps you seventy years apart from Hell-Fire: Abu Sa'id Al Khudry (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated that the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said:

"Every servant of Allah who observes Sawm (fasting) for one day for the sake of Allah, Allah will draw his face farther from Hell-fire to the extent of a distance to be covered in seventy years." [Reported by Al Bukhari, Muslim, At-Tirmidhy, An-Nasa'y, and Ibn Majah].

4- Fasting Ramadan and the next Ramadan erases the sins in between: Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: "The five (daily) Salah (prayers), and from one Friday Salah to the (next) Friday Salah, and from Ramadan to Ramadan are expiations for the (sins) committed in between (their intervals); provided the major sins are not committed." [Reported by Muslim].

5- Fasting has no equivalent: Abu Umamah said: "I came to the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) and said: Command me of an action that admits me to Paradise. He said: Keep to Fasting for it has no equivalent. Then I came to him again, and he said: Keep to fasting." [Reported by An-Nasa'y, Ahmad, and Al Hakim].

6- Fasting intercedes for the fasting person on the Day of Recompense: 'Abdullah ibn 'Amr narrated that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: "Fasting and Qur'an intercede (i.e. for the Muslim) before Allah on the Judgment Day. Fasting says: O Lord, I prevented him from his food and physical desires during the day, so, make me intercede for him. And the Qur'an says: I prevented him from sleeping at night, so, make me intercede for him. He said: So, Allah accepts their intercession." [Reported by Ahmad].

7- Fasting Ramadan in sincere faith and hoping for Allah's Reward atones the past sins of a fasting person: Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: "Whoever fasts in the month of Ramadan out of sincere faith, and hoping for a reward from Allah, then all his previous sins will be forgiven." [Reported by Al Bukhari and Muslim].

We have to know that the fasting person during Ramadan does not deserve this reward [i.e., forgiving the past sins] but after a person fasts the month out of sincere faith and hoping for Allah's Reward.

As for those who fast it out of hypocrisy or without seeking the reward of Allah, their fasting shall not avail them and Allah is in no need to their fasting. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: "Whoever does not give up forged speech and evil actions, Allah is not in need of his (fasting) leaving his food and drink." [Reported by Al Bukhari, At-Tirmidhy, and An-Nasa'y].

8- In the month of Ramadan, the channels of goodness are opened, whereas the gates of evil are closed: Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated: The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: "When Ramadan begins, the gates of Paradise are opened. the gates of Hell are locked and the devils are chained." [Reported by Al Bukhari and Muslim]. In another narration: "During which the gates of Paradise are opened, the gates of Heaven are opened, the gates of Hell are closed, and devils are chained." In another narration: "The gates of mercy are opened."

9- The fasting people enter from a special gate of Paradise: Sahl ibn Sa'd (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated that that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: "There is a gate in Paradise called Ar-Rayyan, and those who observe fasts will enter through it on the Day of Resurrection and none except them will enter through it. It will be said: Where are those who used to observe fasts? They will get up, and none except them will enter through it. After their entry, the gate will be closed and nobody will enter through it." [Reported by Al Bukhari and Muslim].

10- Fasting protects the fasting person from committing sins because of the Prophet's saying: "O young people! Whoever among you is able to marry, should marry, and whoever is not able to marry, is recommended to fast, as fasting diminishes his sexual power."

As for the Prophet's saying: "Whoever does not give up forged speech and evil actions, Allah is not in need of his leaving his food and drink (i.e. Allah will not accept his fasting.)" [Reported by Al Bukhari, At-Tirmidhy, and An-Nasa'y].

As for the Prophet's saying: "Fasting is a screen (from Hell). If one of you is fasting, he should avoid sexual relation with his wife and quarreling, and if somebody should fight or quarrel with him, he should say: 'I am fasting.'" [Reported by Al Bukhari and Muslim].

As for the Prophet's saying: "Perhaps a person who observes fasting would suffer hunger and thirst of his fasting [without taking a reward]." [Reported by Ahmad].

11- The breath (of a fasting person) is sweeter to Allah than the fragrance of musk: Because of the Messenger's saying: "By the One in Whose hand my self is, the smell of the breath of a man fasting is better with Allah than the scent of musk." [Reported by Al Bukhari].

12- The one who offers food to a fasting person shall take the same reward of the fasting without diminishing anything of his reward because of the Messenger's saying: "He who provides a fasting person something with which to break his fast, will earn the same reward as the one who was observing the fast, without diminishing in any way the reward of the latter." [Reported by An-Nasa'y and Ahmad].

13- Performing 'Umrah (minor hajj) in Ramadan equals the performance of Hajj (in reward) because of the Prophet's saying:
"'Umrah (lesser pilgrimage) in Ramadan equals Hajj (in reward)." [Reported by Al Bukhari and Muslim].
In another narration: (equals performing Hajj with me).

14- Fasting contains the blessing of performing Qiyam and expiating sins and faults because the optional Night Salah was the regular practice of the Prophet and his Companions. 'A'ishah (may Allah be pleased with her) said: "Do not miss out the Late Night Prayer because the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) used not to miss it and whenever he was sick or felt bored, he would offer Salah sitting."

Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated that the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) used to commend prayer at night during Ramadan, but did not command it as duty. He would say: If anyone prays during the night in Ramadan because of faith and seeking his reward from Allah, his previous sins will be forgiven for him. When the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) died, this was the practice. [Reported by Al Bukhari and Muslim].

15- Salat-ul-Qiyam with an imam equals observing Salah all night long: Abu Dhar (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated: "We fasted with the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) during Ramadan, but he did not make us get up at night for Salah at any time during the month till seven nights remained; then he made us get up for Salah till a third of the night had passed. When the sixth remaining night came, he did not make us get up for Salah. When the fifth remaining night came, he made us stand in Salah till a half of the night had gone. So, I said: Messenger of Allah, I wish you had led us in supererogatory Salahs during the whole of tonight. He said: When a man prays with an imam till he goes he is reckoned as having spent a whole night in Salah. On the fourth remaining night he did not make us get up. When the third remaining night came, he gathered his family, his wives, and the people and prayed with us till we were afraid we should miss the falah (success). I said: What is falah? He said: The meal before daybreak. Then he did not make us get up for prayer during the remainder of the month." [Reported by the Compilers of Hadiths and others].

16- Fasting contains Laylat-ul-Qadr (the Night of Decree): Allah (may He be Exalted) says: "Verily, We have sent it (this Qur'ân) down in the night of Al-Qadr (Decree). * And what will make you know what the night of Al-Qadr (Decree) is? * The night of Al-Qadr (Decree) is better than a thousand months (i.e. worshipping Allâh in that night is better than worshipping Him a thousand months, i.e. 83 years and 4 months). Therein descend the angels and the Rűh [Jibrîl (Gabriel)] by Allâh's Permission with all Decrees, *(All that night), there is Peace (and Goodness from Allâh to His believing slaves) until the appearance of dawn." [Surat Al Qadr: 1 - 5].
Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: "Whoever fasts in the month of Ramadan out of sincere faith, and hoping for a reward from Allah, then all his previous sins will be forgiven." [Reported by Al Bukhari and Muslim].

Dear Muslim, it is better for you to pick up these fruits and benefit from.

May Allah accept from you and from us. And peace be upon Prophet Muhammad, his family, and his Companions.
 

EsinIslam Ramadan Team

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