As humans we commit mistakes all the time, therefore we should ask Allah for forgiveness and the person we did wrong to.
Our Prophet (Peace and blessing be upon him) said:
“Whoever suffers an injury and forgives (the person responsible), Allah will raise his status to a higher degree and remove one of his sins.”
Why is asking for forgiveness in Islam important?
Asking for forgiveness is really important, as the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessing be upon him) said: “O people! Ask for the forgiveness of Allah and repent to Him as I ask for the forgiveness of Allah and repent to Him one hundred times a day.”
When we ask Allah for forgiveness, we should have the intention of not going back to committing that sin ever again.
There are many benefits that show the importance of asking Allah for forgiveness, and here are some of them:
Forgiveness makes us feel inner peace.
Allah will forgive our sins.
Allah says in the Holy Quran: “Seek forgiveness of your Lord and repent to Him, (and) He will let you enjoy a good provision.” (11: 3)
1- We Forgive one another and ask Allah to forgive us:
وَلَا يَأْتَلِ أُو۟لُوا۟ ٱلْفَضْلِ مِنكُمْ وَٱلسَّعَةِ أَن يُؤْتُوٓا۟ أُو۟لِى ٱلْقُرْبَىٰ وَٱلْمَسَٰكِينَ وَٱلْمُهَٰجِرِينَ فِى سَبِيلِ ٱللَّهِ ۖ وَلْيَعْفُوا۟ وَلْيَصْفَحُوٓا۟ ۗ أَلَا تُحِبُّونَ أَن يَغْفِرَ ٱللَّهُ لَكُمْ ۗ وَٱللَّهُ غَفُورٌ رَّحِيمٌ
“And let not those of virtue among you and wealth swear not to give [aid] to their relatives and the needy and the emigrants for the cause of Allah, and let them pardon and overlook. Would you not like that Allah should forgive you? And Allah is Forgiving and Merciful.” (Qur’an: Chapter 24, Verse 22)
This verse shows us that if we want Allah to forgive us then we should forgive one another even if it’s not easy to forgive what they did to us.
2- We Forgive others to be rewarded:
وَجَزَٰٓؤُا۟ سَيِّئَةٍ سَيِّئَةٌ مِّثْلُهَا ۖ فَمَنْ عَفَا وَأَصْلَحَ فَأَجْرُهُۥ عَلَى ٱللَّهِ ۚ إِنَّهُۥ لَا يُحِبُّ ٱلظَّٰلِمِينَ
But [remember that an attempt at] requiting evil may, too, become an evil: hence, whoever pardons [his foe] and makes peace, his reward rests with God – for, verily, He does not love evildoers (Qur’an 42:40)
From this verse, Allah tells us that when we forgive the ones who harm us or treat us badly, he will reward us in return.
3- Get rid of the anger and overthinking:
When someone does something bad to us, we can’t stop ourselves from thinking about it and what we should have done or why did they that to us, even though we did them no harm. This leads to stress, so if we forgive them and leave their punishment to Allah, we will feel relieved, and all the overthinking and noise that keeps us awake at night will stop.
4- We Forgive so that Allah will have mercy on us:
The Prophet (peace and blessing be upon him) said
“Have mercy on those on the earth, and the One in heaven will have mercy on you”
If we want Allah to show us mercy, we should start by doing the same thing, and show mercy to others, even the ones who offended us. Don’t think of the things they did to you, think of Allah, how merciful he is, and how he will reward you, and then you won’t think of the bad things people did to you.
5- Let Go of Grudges:
Carrying grudges will only hurt us and make us miserable, don’t let your past hold you down, and keep you in the same darkroom for the rest of your life. Let it go and live your life. Allah sees how hard you try and that’s more than we ever dream of.
Forgiveness is one of the good acts that we could do, and that Allah loves.
“Then, for having broken their solemn pledge, We rejected them and caused their hearts to harden – [so that now] they distort the meaning of the [revealed] words, taking them out of their context; and they have forgotten much of what they had been told to bear in mind, and from all but a few of them, thou wilt always experience treachery. But pardon them, and forbear: verily, God loves the doers of good.” (Qur’an 5:13)
6- Forgiveness strengthens our belief in Allah:
“The believers are those who spend in charity during ease and hardship and who restrain their anger and pardon the people, for Allah loves the doers of good.” Qur’an (3:134)
What truly shows our belief in Allah is forgiveness, forgiving those who offend us or harm us, letting go of the anger that we feel, and that’s what we all should do our best to achieve.
7- Our forgiveness and Patience are two faces to the same coin:
“Whoever is patient and forgives, verily, that is among the matters of steadfast determination.” (Qur’an, 42:43)
Forgiving reflects our patience, and being patient is a good thing that we all should opt to accomplish.
What are the benefits of forgiveness in Islam?
In Islam forgiveness is really important, and we have discussed many of its benefits, additionally, forgiving one another brings us closer to Allah. So forgiveness is highly valued in Islam, and there are many Quranic verses and hadiths about it.
- We forgive as the prophet taught us to do.
We all know how the Prophet (peace and blessing be upon him) suffered and what his people did to him. He went through a lot but even though he didn’t carry grudges toward them, actually he forgave them for everything they did. And we should learn from the prophet and look up to him.
Allah will reward us and punish the ones who hurt us:
- We should forgive the ones who hurt us and leave it all to Allah.
Allah says in the Holy Quran: “Say to those who believe that they should forgive those who expect not the days of Allah, as it is for Him to recompense people for what they have earned.” (Qur’an, 45:14)
How many times should you ask for forgiveness?
Ahmad that Abu Bakr narrated that Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessing be upon him) said: “No Muslim commits a sin and then performs ablution, prays two rak’ahs and begs Allah for forgiveness for that sin, but He forgives him.”
Here’s what you should do to ask Allah for forgiveness:
- After every salah ask Allah to forgive you.
- Say the 99 names of Allah and ask for forgiveness.
- Don’t repeat your sins stay away from committing any, and try your best to do only good deeds.
- When you get angry try to calm yourself down, don’t surrender to the feeling of anger. The prophet (peace and blessing be upon him) said: “Whoever suffers an injury and forgives (the person responsible), God will raise his status to a higher degree and remove one of his sins.”
- Recite Duas from the Quran and hadiths to ask Allah for forgiveness.
Here are some of the things you could say:
استغفر الله meaning, “I ask forgiveness from Allah.”
سبحانك اللهم وبحمدك و أشهد أن لا إله إلا أنت أستغفرك وأتوب أليك meaning “Glory be to You, Allah, and with You Praise (thanks) and I bear witness that there is no deity but You, I ask Your forgiveness and I return to You (in obedience).”
The Prophet (peace and blessing be upon him) said, “The best supplication for seeking forgiveness (Sayyidul istighfar) is to say:
اللهم أنت ربي، لا إله إلا أنت ، خلقتني وأنا عبدك، وأنا على عهدك ووعدك ما استطعت أعوذ بك من شر ما صنعت أبوء لك بنعمتك علي، وأبوء بذنبي، فاغفر لي فإنه لا يغفر الذنوب إلا أنت.
What did Prophet Muhammad say about forgiveness?
The Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessing be upon him) said: “O people! Ask for the forgiveness of Allah and repent to Him as I ask for the forgiveness of Allah and repent to Him one hundred times a day.”
The Prophet (peace and blessing be upon him) said: “Have mercy on those on the earth, and the One in heaven will have mercy on you”
Anas said, I heard the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessing be upon him) saying:
”قال الله تعالى: يا ابن آدم إنك ما دعوتني ورجوتني غفرت لك ما كان منك ولا أبالي، يا ابن آدم لو بلغت ذنوبك عنان السماء، ثم استغفرتني ، غفرت لك ولا أبالي، يا ابن آدم إنك لو أتيتني بقراب الأرض خطايا، ثم لقيتني لا تشرك بي شيئاً، لأتيتك بقرابها مغفرة”.
“Allah has said: ‘O son of Adam! I shall go on forgiving you so long as you pray to Me and aspire for My forgiveness whatever may be your sins. O son of Adam! I do not care even if your sins should pile up to the sky and should you beg pardon of Me, I would forgive you. O son of Adam! If you come to Me with an earth full of sins and meet Me, not associating anything with Me in worship, I will certainly grant you as much pardon as will fill the earth.”
Oqbah Ibn Amir narrated that the Prophet (peace and blessing be upon him) said: “You shall pardon on who oppressed you.“
Abu Hurairah said: I heard the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) saying, “I swear by Allah that I seek Allah’s Pardon and turn to Him in repentance more than seventy times a day.”
God loves those who ask Him for forgiveness
Here are some verses showing what Allah says about forgiveness.
“We have not created the heavens and the earth and everything in between except for a purpose. And the Hour is certain to come, so forgive graciously.” (Quran 15:85)
Allah tells us in this verse that we will not live forever we have a limited time on earth and we should take advantage of this time and forgive others. How can we ask Allah for forgiveness if we don’t even forgive others for the slightest of things?
“And the retribution for an evil act is an evil one like it, but whoever pardons and makes reconciliation – his reward is [due] from Allah. Indeed, He does not like wrongdoers.” (Quran 42:40)
In this verse Allah shows us the reward of forgiveness, sometimes forgiving others is really hard but when you are able to forgive them Allah will reward you more than you can even imagine.
“And whoever is patient and forgives – indeed, that is of the matters [worthy] of resolve.” (Quran 42:43)
“It is by Allah’s mercy that you are gentle to them; and had you been harsh and hardhearted, surely, they would have scattered from around you. So, excuse them, plead for forgiveness for them, and consult them in the affairs, and once you are resolved, put your trust in Allah. Indeed, Allah loves those who trust in Him.” (Quran 3:159)
As Allah says in this verse forgiving others is like putting your trust in Allah. So, whenever you think it is too hard to forgive someone, remember Allah sees everything and he will reward you.
“Do not let the people of virtue and affluence among you swear to suspend donations to their relatives, the needy, and the emigrants in the cause of Allah. Let them pardon and forgive. Do you not love to be forgiven by Allah? And Allah is All-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” (Quran 24:22)
We always ask Allah for forgiveness and we should try our best to forgive others too.