Predestination is not an excuse for sinning
Fatwa No: 192951

Question

Asak Scholars / Sheikhs, In one of your fatwa number 12519, you mention that " When Moosa (Moses) talked to Adam, may Allaah exalt their mention, and blamed him for his and his offspring’s expulsion from Paradise on account of his sin, the latter replied with a definitive answer that deflects all blame, and said, “How can you rebuke me for something that Allaah the Almighty predetermined [to occur] before even creating me?” The Prophet , said that Adam thus [rightly] refuted what Moosa said. [Al-Bukhaari, Muslim, Abu Daawood, An-Nasaa’i, At-Tirmithi and Ibn Maajah] The wording of other narrations say that [Adam mentioned] it was decreed forty years before his creation. [Muslim] An-Nawawi said that predetermination or destiny here means that Allaah the Almighty decreed this and wrote it on the Preserved Tablet. If so, then, Adam cannot be blamed at all" My question is : 1. First of all I will clarify that whatever Allah has done is correct and whatever he is doing is correct and whatever he will be doing is correct inshaallah. This is to clarify my misunderstanding, Ok the question is : Why Satan was given that huge status and brought along with angels when Allah knew that this will be cause for the adam(pbuh) dispel from heaven to earth at that time secondly when everything is predestined as per your fatwa and even a normal human being can use the same statement that what is his fault when it was predestined and thirdly if someone is born lazy (in built characterisitc) and he doesn't do things for himself also, e.g. if lazy person is given an option of eating normal food without walking 1 km to get precious food, he will opt for normal food, though he will be willing to have that precious food to eat. Bcoz of laziness he for himself also will not go for that food. So if some one due to his laziness sometimes prays at home instead of going to mosque, at what extent he is at fault.. Jazzak allah khair Many thanks for clearing all our misconception Brothers.

Answer

All perfect praise be to Allaah, The Lord of the Worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allaah, and that Muhammad, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, is His slave and Messenger.

First of all, before answering your questions, we would like to mention two facts:

The first fact: Submission to Allaah in regard to His Predestination is something Islamically required; if Allaah decrees something, then there is no one who can overturn His Decree, and if He rules, there is no one who can overturn His Rule. Allaah Says (what means): {And Allaah decides; there is no adjuster of His decision. And He is swift in account.}[Quran 13:41]

This submission is even more confirmed in regard to matters of the unseen, among which is Predestination, which is the hidden secret. At-Tahaawi  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him said in his book entitled Al-‘Aqeedah At-Tahaawiyyah: “The essence of Predestination is the Secret of Allaah in His creation which neither a close angel nor a sent Prophet knows.

The second fact: Allaah does not do anything except for wisdom; some people might know it and some others might not know it. However, asking about the wisdom in order to reassure one’s heart is acceptable, but asking a question as a way of objection is not permissible, as this is the approach of the devil; Allaah Said about him (what means): {And [mention] when We said to the angels, ‘Prostrate to Adam,” and they prostrated, except for Iblees. He said, “Should I prostrate to one You created from clay?”}[Quran 17:61]. Of course, you are not included in this kind of people, but we mentioned some facts for the benefit of the reader.

As regards your questions, we will answer them in the following points:

1- When Aadam  may  Allaah  exalt  his  mention gave Predestination as an excuse, it was not for having committed his sin, but it was for the calamity to which this sin led, which is being driven out of Paradise; and Moses  may  Allaah  exalt  his  mention blamed him because of this. It is for this reason that the scholars said: “It is permissible to argue that Predestination is the reason for the calamities that befall a person but not for the sins that he commits"; Shaykh Ibn Taymiyyah  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him said: “One may give Predestination as an excuse for calamities but not for sins.

2- Your question about the position the devil held among the angels: the answer is that he was one of the angels according to the view of some scholars, and according to the view of other scholars he was a pious jinn worshipping Allaah with them (the angels). The fact that Allaah knows in advance about this and He did not prevent the devil from this position, is for a wisdom which only Allaah knows; it might be that Allaah wanted to show the wisdom behind affliction.

3- What we have mentioned in our Fatwa that everything is predestined is something determined in the texts of the Book of Allaah and the Sunnah of the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ). However, it is not acceptable to use Predestination as an excuse for committing sins as we have already clarified in the first point. So, this is our answer to those who say: “What is my fault if this is predestined for me?”

4- Laziness is a kind of affliction and the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) used to seek refuge with Allaah from it. The fact that a person is pleased with the minimum fortune in this life because of laziness does not render him sinful. However, in matters of religion, if one fails to perform an obligation due to laziness, then he is held accountable for that. The congregational prayer is an obligation according to the preponderant view of the scholars and if one fails to perform it without a valid reason, he is sinful. For more benefit, please refer to Fataawa 83297and 82538. No sane person would see the fire coming to consume him and he waits for it and not escape with the pretext of laziness. Of course, a sane person in this case would fight this laziness and struggle to run away.

5- If a person wants to rely on Predestination, the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) advised him to work (and act). ‘Ali  may  Allaah  be  pleased  with  him narrated that the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) said: "There is no one amongst you except that his place in Hellfire is written and his place in Paradise is written." The Companions asked: “Shall we not rely on our book (i.e. Predestination) and not act? He said: "Rather, you should act, as every person is facilitated for what he was created for…..Ibn Hajar  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him said: “It means that you should be preoccupied with acts of worship, and what you were created for and ordered to do; you should let the matter of the unseen which only Allaah knows to its owner (i.e. Allaah), you do not have to do anything about it. This is the summary of the statement of At-Teebi.

6- We have not seen anybody leaving his worldly benefits because of relying on Predestination, while some disbelievers and dissolute people abandon the means of guidance out of relying on this, and this is contradictory. Shaykh Ibn Taymiyyah  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him said in his book entitled Minhaaj As-Sunnah: “Using Predestination as an excuse (for committing sins and leaving religious obligations) is unfounded according to the agreement of the Muslim scholars and sane people. The person who uses it as an excuse when committing evil matters and wrongdoings is someone who contradicts himself and follows his desires, thus conforming to the following statement made by a scholar: “In matters regarding obedience, you say that you have a choice (i.e. you deny Predestination), but regarding acts of disobedience, you say that you are forced (i.e. you deny having a free will), so you only follow that which corresponds to your desires….

Allaah Knows best.

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