Making up for Abandoning Prayer
Fatwa No: 84403

  • Fatwa Date:2-7-2002 - Rabee' Al-Aakhir 22, 1423
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Question

My sister is 33 years old and wants to pray to seek forgiveness for not praying during that time. She wants to know what to do for Allah to forgive her.

Answer

All perfect praise be to Allah, The Lord of the Worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allah, and that Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) is His slave and Messenger.

Your sister should hasten to sincerely repent. She should praise Allah that He bestowed His Blessings upon her by guiding her to come back towards Him before her death.

Allah Says (what means):

• {And turn to Allah in repentance, all of you, O believers, that you might succeed.} [Quran 24:31]

• {O you who have believed, repent to Allah with sincere repentance. Perhaps your Lord will remove from you your misdeeds and admit you into gardens beneath which rivers flow.} [Quran 66: 8]

• {And whoever does not repent - then it is those who are the wrongdoers.} [Quran 49: 11]

Besides, Anas  may  Allaah  be  pleased  with  him narrated that the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) said: “Allah is more pleased with the repentance of His Slave than anyone of you is pleased with finding his camel which he had lost in the desert.” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]

Moreover,Abu Moosa  may  Allaah  be  pleased  with  him narrated that the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) said: “Allah, the Exalted, stretches His Hand during the night so that those who commit sins by day may repent, and He stretches His Hand in the day so that those who commit sins by night may repent. He keeps doing so until the sun rises from the West.

The integral parts of a valid repentance is feeling deep sorrow for what has happened, being determined not to neglect the prayers again, and hastening to offer the prayer at its prescribed fixed time.

Know that neglecting the prayer is among the grave sins.

Allah made it among the characteristics of non-Muslims.

Allah Says (what means): {And when it is said to them, "Bow [in prayer]," they do not bow.} [Quran 77: 48].

Allah stated the situation of the inhabitants of Hellfire in the following verses: {[And asking them], “What put you into Saqar?” They will say, "We were not of those who prayed. Nor did we used to feed the poor. And we used to enter into vain discourse with those who engaged [in it]. And we used to deny the Day of Recompense.} [Quran 74:42-46]

Thus, the significant character of the people of Hell is abandoning the prayer.

Jabir  may  Allaah  be  pleased  with  him narrated that the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) said: “Between a person and disbelief and polytheism is abandoning the prayer.” [Muslim]

Also, Buraydah  may  Allaah  be  pleased  with  him narrated that the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) said: “The pact between us and them (the hypocrites) is the prayer. Whoever gives it up becomes an unbeliever.” [Ahmad, Abu Daawood, at-Tirmithi, an-Nasaa’i and Ibn Maajah]

Therefore, your sister should be thankful to Allah that He guided her to repent before her life comes to an end. She should purify her intention and continue to perform the prayer after repenting; surely, Allah will accept her repentance.

Allah Says (what means): {… indeed, We will not allow to be lost the reward of any who did well in deeds.} [Quran 18: 30]

The majority of Muslim scholars are of the opinion that she should make up all the missed prayers. So, she should make them up without causing any hardship for herself. The easy way to do so is offering with every obligatory prayer the possible previous missed prayers.

In addition, she should perform good deeds as much as possible and ask the Forgiveness of Allah. Indeed Allah forgives all sins.

Allah knows best.

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