Umar Ibn Khattab’s (Radiallahu Anhu) brilliant letter to a Sinner

Imam Ibn Katheer reported that a man used to visit Umar Ibn Khattab (ra) from Levant (Syria/Jordan Area). 

Later on Umar (ra) noticed that he wasn’t coming anymore so he made enquiries regarding his whereabouts.

The people said don’t ask about him as you wouldn’t be pleased with his current condition.
Umar (ra) insisted so they informed him that this man has become a well known drunkard now. 
Umar (ra) become worried as it is harmful to his health and Deen hence he devised a plan.

He wrote a letter;
From Umar Ibn Khattab… quoted Quran Ayah from Surah Ghafir

غَافِرِ الذَّنبِ وَقَابِلِ التَّوْبِ شَدِيدِ الْعِقَابِ ذِي الطَّوْلِ ۖ لَا إِلَٰهَ إِلَّا هُوَ ۖ إِلَيْهِ الْمَصِيرُ 

‘The Forgiver of sin, the Acceptor of repentance, the Severe in punishment, the Bestower (of favours), La ilaha illa Huwa (none has the right to be worshipped but He), to Him is the final return’

Umar (ra) ordered his messenger that he must only hand it to him in person whilst he is sober, not drunk.

His messenger delivered the letter as instructed.

When the man opened the letter he was shocked to see what Umar (ra) wrote and the ayah he selected from the Quran.

It made him think and ponder that Allah Almighty is saying ‘he is the forgiver of sins’ – which increased his hopes and but followed it by ‘severe in punishment’ which made him fearful and scared to go back to haram.

After pondering for a while he made tawbah nasoohah – sincere repentance and turned his life around!

Lessons for us;

– Umar (ra) being the Caliph exercised tolerance and preferred ‘purification of the heart and mind’ over issuing penal charges and punishments for drinking

As Muslims we must always be worried about reforming our selves and helping others to improve rather than polluting one self by judging others negatively and doing their gheebah – backbiting

– Allah can turn anyone’s life around at any time

May Allah make us amongst the ones who repent and help others doing it

Ameen

(Scattered Pearls)

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