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The Virtues of spending and fighting before the Conquest of Makkah Print E-mail

Allah's statement,

﴿لاَ يَسْتَوِى مِنكُم مَّنْ أَنفَقَ مِن قَبْلِ الْفَتْحِ وَقَـتَلَ﴾

(Not equal among you are those who spent before the conquering and fought.) meaning those who did not fight and spend before the Conquest are not equal to those who spent and fought. Before Makkah was conquered, things were difficult for Muslims and only the righteous ones embraced Islam. After Makkah was conquered, Islam spread tremendously throughout the known world and people embraced the religion of Allah en masse. Similarly He said:

﴿أُوْلَـئِكَ أَعْظَمُ دَرَجَةً مِّنَ الَّذِينَ أَنفَقُواْ مِن بَعْدُ وَقَـتَلُواْ وَكُلاًّ وَعَدَ اللَّهُ الْحُسْنَى﴾

(Such are higher in degree than those who spent and fought afterwards. But to all Allah has promised the best (reward).) The majority considers the Conquest here to be the conquest of Makkah. Ash-Sha`bi and several others said that the Ayah refers to the treaty at Al-Hudaybiyyah. There is proof for this opinion found in a Hadith from Anas, collected by Imam Ahmad. Anas said, "Khalid bin Al-Walid and `Abdur-Rahman bin `Awf had a dispute. Khalid said to `Abdur-Rahman, `You boast about days (battles) that you participated in before us.' When the news of this statement reached the Prophet he said,

«دَعُوا لِي أَصْحَابِي، فَوَالَّذِي نَفْسِي بِيَدِهِ لَوْ أَنْفَقْتُمْ مِثْلَ أُحُدٍ أَوْ مِثْلَ الْجِبَالِ ذَهَبًا، مَا بَلَغْتُمْ أَعْمَالَهُم»

(Do not bother my Companions, for by He in Whose Hand is my soul! If you spend an amount of gold equal to (Mount) Uhud, (or equal to the mountains), you will not reach the level of their actions.)'' It is a known fact that Khalid bin Al-Walid, whom the Prophet addressed this statement to, embraced Islam during the period between the treaty of Al-Hudaybiyyah and the conquering of Makkah. The dispute between Khalid and `Abdur-Rahman occurred because of the battle of Bani Jadhimah. The Prophet sent Khalid bin Al-Walid to them after the conquest of Makkah, and they said, "Saba'na,'' instead of saying, "Aslamna'' (we embraced Islam). So Khalid ordered their execution and the execution of their prisoners (of war); `Abdur-Rahman bin `Awf and `Abdullah bin `Umar opposed him. This is the reason behind the dispute that occurred between Khalid and `Abdur-Rahman. But in the Sahih, the Messenger of Allah said,

«لَا تَسُبُّوا أَصْحَابِي، فَوَالَّذِي نَفْسِي بِيَدِهِ لَوْ أَنْفَقَ أَحَدُكُمْ مِثْلَ أُحُدٍ ذَهَبًا، مَا بَلَغَ مُدَّ أَحَدِهِمْ وَلَا نَصِيفَه»

(None should revile my Companions, for by He in Whose Hand is my soul! If one of you were to spend as much gold as Uhud, it would not reach the level of them equal to an amount as much as one Mudd of one of them or half of it.) Allah said,

﴿وَكُلاًّ وَعَدَ اللَّهُ الْحُسْنَى﴾

(But to all Allah has promised the best (reward).) meaning, those who spent before and after the conquest of Makkah; they all will gain a reward for their good deeds, even though some of them vary in rank and earn a better reward than others as Allah said,

﴿لاَّ يَسْتَوِى الْقَـعِدُونَ مِنَ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ غَيْرُ أُوْلِى الضَّرَرِ وَالْمُجَـهِدُونَ فِى سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ بِأَمْوَلِهِمْ وَأَنفُسِهِمْ فَضَّلَ اللَّهُ الْمُجَـهِدِينَ بِأَمْوَلِهِمْ وَأَنفُسِهِمْ عَلَى الْقَـعِدِينَ دَرَجَةً وَكُـلاًّ وَعَدَ اللَّهُ الْحُسْنَى وَفَضَّلَ اللَّهُ الْمُجَـهِدِينَ عَلَى الْقَـعِدِينَ أَجْراً عَظِيماً ﴾

(Not equal are those of the believers who sit (at home), except those who are disabled, and those who strive hard and fight in the cause of Allah with their wealth and their lives. Allah has preferred in grades those who strive hard and fight with their wealth and their lives above those who sit (at home). Unto each, Allah has promised good, but Allah has preferred by a great reward those who strive hard and fight, above those who sit (at home).)(4:95) There is a Hadith in the Sahih that states,

«الْمُؤْمِنُ الْقَوِيُّ خَيْرٌ وَأَحَبُّ إِلَى اللهِ مِنَ الْمُؤْمِنِ الضَّعِيفِ، وَفِي كُلَ خَيْر»

(The strong believer is better and more beloved to Allah than the weak believer; both have goodness in them.) The Prophet ended his statement this way to draw attention to the second type of believer, so that their own qualities are not forgotten in the midst of preferring the former type. In this way, the latter is not dismissed as being degraded in the Hadith. Therefore, the Prophet ended his statement by praising the second type -- the weak believers -- after giving preference to the first type. Allah said:

﴿وَاللَّهُ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ خَبِيرٌ﴾

(And Allah is All-Aware of what you do.) meaning, since Allah is perfectly aware of all things, He made distinctions between the rewards of the believers who spent and fought before the Conquest and those who spent and fought afterwards. Surely, Allah does this by His knowledge of the intention of the former type and their perfect sincerity to Him, all the while spending in times of hardship, poverty and dire straits. This is found in the Hadith,

«سَبَقَ دِرْهَمٌ مِائَةَ أَلْف»

(Spending one Dirham is preceded over a hundred thousand.) There is no doubt that the people of faith consider Abu Bakr As-Siddiq to be the person who has the best share according to the meaning of this Ayah. He was the chief of those who implemented it, among all followers of all Prophets. He spent all of his wealth seeking the Face of Allah, the Exalted and Most Honored. He did it voluntarily too, not to repay a debt or a favor that anyone from mankind had on him. May Allah be pleased with him.

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