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Fear Allāh and Seek Nearness to Him: Explanation of al-Māʾidah, 5:35

Imām Muḥammad Nāṣir al-Dīn al-Albānī

Commentary on Sūrah al-Māʾidah explaining the importance of maintaining a close relationship with Allāh. By pleasing Him, a Muslim ensures their own success.

Allāh, the Perfect and Most High states:

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا اتَّقُوا اللَّـهَ وَابْتَغُوا إِلَيْهِ الْوَسِيلَةَ وَجَاهِدُوا فِي سَبِيلِهِ لَعَلَّكُمْ تُفْلِحُونَ
“O you who believe! Do your duty to Allāh and fear Him. Seek the means of approach to Him, and strive hard in His Cause as much as you can. So that you may be successful.”1
[Al-Māʾidah, 5:35]

Shaykh al-Albānī comments:2

“…The Imām of the scholars of Tafsīr, al-Ḥāfiẓ ibn Jarīr (raḥimahullāh) in explaining this verse, commented: “O you who affirm all that Allāh and His Messenger have informed you of, the reward He promised and the punishment He threatened!”

اتَّقُوا اللَّـهَ
“Fear Allāh”

He commented: “Respond to Allāh by obeying Him in all that He has commanded you with and forbade you from.”

وَابْتَغُوا إِلَيْهِ الْوَسِيلَة
“Seek the means of approach to Him”

He commented: “Seek nearness to Him by performing deeds pleasing to Him.”

al-Ḥāfiẓ ibn Kathīr relates from Ibn ʿAbbās (raḍī Allāhu ʿanhumā) that the meaning of wasīlahh is “to draw near.” He related the likes of that from Mujāhid, Abū Wāʾil, al-Ḥasan, `ʿAbdullāh ibn Kathīr, as-Suddī, Ibn Zayd and others. He further related from Qatādah that he said regarding it: ‘Meaning: You draw near to Him by obeying Him and performing deeds pleasing to Him.’

Imām Ibn Kathīr then stated: “This is what these Imām’s have said regarding this, and there is no disagreement between the scholars of tafsīr about it. And al-Wasīlah is that which delivers one to the attainment of what he intends.”3

Sources:
1. Sūrah al-Maʾidah (5):35.
2. Shaykh al-Albānī, al-Tawassul, Anwaa’uhu wa Aḥkāmuhu, p13.
3. Ibn Kathīr, Tafsīr ibn Kathīr, 2/52-53).

Translated by Umm Sufyān Fāṭimah

Published: November 10, 2012
Edited: April 14, 2023

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