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Why are we tested?

Allah says in the Quran, “Do people think that they will be left alone because they say: ‘We believe,’ and will not be tested? And We indeed tested those who were before them. And Allah will certainly make known (the truth of) those who are true, and will certainly make known (the falsehood of) those who are liars.” [29:2-3]

A friend recently shared how a drunk driver had smashed into his car while it was parked outside his house writing off both his car and his wifes newly purchased car. He lamented the situation and reflected that perhaps this was based on some of his sins. But he also recounted that only a short while before the accident he had been stood in that same spot with his grandchild in his arms.

We don’t understand Allah’s wisdom and sometimes look at tragedies like the earthquake in Turkey or family problems we experience, despite us being good or forbearing, with questions.

So why are we tested? As Muslims, we believe that Allah tests us in various ways throughout our lives, and it is important for us to understand the wisdom behind these tests and how we should respond to them.

From this verse, we can understand that tests are an inevitable part of our lives, and they serve a purpose in our journey of faith. So why does Allah test us? There are several reasons:


Benefits of exams

  1. Self Analysis of One’s Own Abilities: With examinations, a person is able to know his level of Performance and Knowledge.
  2. Tool for Learning and Working: Examination provides encouragement to people for Learning and Working.
  3. Spirit of Competition: Examinations also create a sense of Competition which pushes the limit of a person’s ability to do more and to do best.
  4. Development of Personality and Confidence: Spirit of Competition and Realisation of Self -Analysis leads to the development of one’s Personality and Confidence.
  5. Scholarships and Awards: Good Performance in Examinations brings Scholarships and Awards 
  6. Good Future: Good Grades translate into better Job Placement and remuneration

Know yourself

Get to know the real people in your life, 


  1. To Purify Us

Allah tests us to purify our souls and to help us grow closer to Him. Trials and tribulations help us to reflect on our actions and seek forgiveness for our sins. It is through these difficult times that we can develop patience, perseverance, and reliance on Allah.

Allah says in the Quran, “And We will surely test you with something of fear and hunger and a loss of wealth and lives and fruits, but give good tidings to the patient. Who, when disaster strikes them, say, ‘Indeed we belong to Allah, and indeed to Him we will return.’ Those are the ones upon whom are blessings from their Lord and mercy. And it is those who are the [rightly] guided.” [2:155-157]

“A Muslim is not afflicted by hardship, sickness, sadness, worry, harm, or depression – even if pricked by a thorn, but Allah expiates his sins because of it” [Bukhari]

The hadith of the Prophet in which he said, ‘The believing man and woman will continually be tested in his self, his children, and his wealth until he meets Allah and that which he has of the misfortune.”

And his statement, When Allah desires for His servant some good, He hastens his punishment in this life, and when Allah intends some good for His servant He will postpone His punishment until he will be recompensed on the day of judgment’’.

  1. To Raise Our Status

Allah tests us to raise our status in this life and in the hereafter. Trials and tribulations can be a means of expiation for our sins and a way to increase our rewards in the hereafter. Allah may also test us with wealth, health, and success to see how we use these blessings and whether we are grateful to Him.

Allah says in the Quran, “And We will surely test you until We make evident those who strive among you [for the cause of Allah] and the patient, and We will test your affairs.” [47:31]

“I have no reward except Jannah for a believing slave of Mine who shows patience and anticipates My reward when I take away his favourite one from the inhabitants of the world.”

We also read this in a hadith narrated by Anas who said that he heard the Prophet say that Allah said:

إذا ابليت عبدي بحبيبتيه فصبر عوضه منهما الجنة

“When I affect my slave in his two dear things(i.e., his eyes), and he endures patiently, heshall be compensated with Paradise”. (Bukhari)

  1. To Distinguish the Believers from the Disbelievers

Allah tests us to distinguish the true believers from the disbelievers. Tests can reveal the strength of our faith and our commitment to Allah. Those who remain steadfast in the face of trials and tribulations demonstrate their faith and are rewarded by Allah.

Allah says in the Quran, “Or do you think that you will enter Paradise while Allah has not yet made evident those of you who fight in His cause and made evident those who are steadfast?” [3:142]

My dear brothers and sisters, it is important for us to understand that tests are a natural part of life, and they serve a purpose in our journey of faith. We should not despair or lose hope in the face of difficulties, but rather we should turn to Allah for guidance and seek His mercy and forgiveness.

When faced with a trial, we should remember the example of the prophets and the righteous who came before us. They endured great hardships and challenges, but they remained steadfast in their faith and relied on Allah for guidance and support.

Anas bin Malik said, “We were with the Prophet and he smiled so broadly that his molar could be seen, then he said: “Do you know why I am smiling?

We said, `Allah and His Messenger know best.’

He said: “Because of the way a servant will argue with his Lord on the Day of Resurrection. He will say, “O Lord, will You not protect me from injustice” [Allah] will say, “Of course.” The servant will say, “I will not accept any witness against me except from myself.” [Allah] will say, “Today you will be a sufficient witness against yourself, and the honorable scribes will serve as witnesses against you.” Then his mouth will be sealed, and it will be said to his faculties, “Speak!” So they will speak of what he did. Then he will be permitted to speak, and he will say, “May you be doomed! It was for you that I was fighting.”” [Reported by Muslim and An-Nasa’i]

4-Strengthening the personality of the believer (Saql Shakhsiya al-Mu’min):

In conclusion, my dear brothers and sisters, tests and trials are a means of purifying our souls, raising our status, and distinguishing the true believers from the disbelievers. We should embrace these tests with patience and gratitude,

  1. Lessen people’s attachment to the Dunya:

If the dunya was free of any hardship and misfortune then people would have even been more attached to it and neglect the next life.

  1. A reminder of Allah’s favors upon mankind:

That is because man, who has been created with the faculty of sight, often forgets the blessing of being able to see. He does not fully give its due right.

If Allah was to temporarily take away his sight then return it to him he would realise the value of this great bounty.

Constant bounties and good-fortune often makes people forget the value of these bounties good-fortune for which they forget to show gratitude. Allah takes it away from people and then returns it to them in order for them to be reminded about these bounties and that they show gratitude to Allah for them.

Suffering makes us human.

I am always asking: Why was I tested?

Quran answers: “Do men think that they will be left alone saying, ’We believe’, and that they will not be tested? We did test those before them, and Allaah will certainly know those who are true from those who are false.” [29:2-3]

I am always asking: Why could I never get what I want?

Quran answers: ”It is possible that you dislike a thing which is good for you, and that you love a thing, which is bad for you. But Allaah knows, while you know not.” Surah Al-Baqarah [2:216]

I am always asking: Why was I burdened this way?

Quran answers: “Allaah does not place a burden to a soul greater than it can bear. It gets every good that it earns, and it suffers every ill that it earns.” Surah Al-Baqarah [2:286] & “So verily, with every difficulty there is relief: (repeated) Verily, with every difficulty there is relief.” Surah Al-Insyirah [94:5-6]

I am always asking: Why do I lose hope?

Quran answers: “So lose not heart, nor fall into despair…” Surah Al-Imran [3:139]

I am always asking: How can I face it?

Quran answers: ” O you who believe! Persevere in patience and constancy; compete in such perseverance; strengthen each other; and fear Allaah that you may prosper.” Surah Al-Imran [3:200] & “And seek (Allaah’s) help with patience, perseverance and prayer: It is indeed hard, except to those who bring a humbly submissive (to Allaah).” Surah Al-Baqarah [2:45]

I am always asking: What do I get for all these?

Quran answers: “Indeed, Allaah has purchased from the believers their lives and properties (in exchange) for that they will have the garden (of Paradise)…” Surah At-Taubah [9:111]

I always say: But I can’t take it anymore!

Quran answers: “…and never give up hope of Allaah’s Soothing Mercy; truly No one despairs of Allaah’s Soothing Mercy. except Those who have no faith.” Surah Yusuf [9:87] & “Despairs not of the Mercy of Allaah: for Allaah forgives All sins for He is Often- Forgiving, Most Merciful.” Surah Az-Zumar [39:53]


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