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Juz 13

Surah Ibrahim, Verse 7

Surah Ibrahim, Verse 7:

وَإِذْ تَأَذَّنَ رَبُّكُمْ لَءِن شَكَرْتُمْ لَأََزِيدَ نَّكُمْ وَلَءِن كَفَرْتُمْ إِنَّ عَذَابِى لَشَدِيدٌ

Translation: And [remember] when your Lord proclaimed, ‘If you are grateful, I will surely increase you [in favor]; but if you deny, indeed, My punishment is severe.’”

As-Salaamu Alaikum Qur’an Weekly,

I want to share with you the seventh ayah of Surah Ibrahim, this is the thirteenth juz of the Qur’an. I’m just going to get straight into what Allah says Himself. When your Master declared that even if you are the least bit grateful. Allah is saying even if you show a little bit of gratitude, He’s not asking for a lot. He then says, I will increase you, increase you,  increase you, and increase you, I swear to it. The strongest language possible is used. If you could show the least bit of gratitude.

The question is grateful to who? You would think grateful to Allah, but Allah didn’t mention Himself. So it could be grateful to Allah, grateful to your parents, grateful to your teachers, grateful for your health, grateful to friends. Grateful to anyone who’s done anything for you. Grateful to your employer for giving you a job. Appreciative. If you could just become appreciative, if you could just be grateful. Grateful is not just an act of saying Alhamdulilah. Grateful is an attitude, it’s a lifestyle, it’s a way of thinking. You’re constantly grateful. But if you could show that attitude in even the least bit, what does Allah say? لَأزِيدَنَّكُمْ(laazeedannakum), I swear to it, I will increase you. There’s no doubt about it, I swear to it, I will increase you. Allah doesn’t use “I” normally in Qur’an, He usually uses “We.” It is only in the most intense cases in the Qur’an that Allah uses I. He used I here.

The question comes up, increase you in what? Because you can say Allah increase me in knowledge, increase me in wisdom, increase me in patience. We don’t just say “Allah increase me…” In a different ayah, Allah says He’d increase them in faith. He doesn’t just say He’ll increase them. In this ayah He says, you show gratitude even in the least bit, I will increase you. Increase you in what? Allah did not limit what He will increase you in. That’s the beauty of this ayah. The motivation to be grateful in this ayah, is I will keep giving you more, and more, and more of everything. You think of it I will give it to you, if it’s beneficial I will give it to you, I’ll take care of it, I promise. You just show Me gratitude.

You know this ayah was actually part of a speech given by Musa (alayhi salam)? You know he was giving this speech to the Israelites, and he was giving this speech to the Israelites after they had crossed the water.  When they crossed the water, they had memories of their children being slaughtered every other year. These are scarred parents that have traveled, that have seen torture and suffered through so many things. Instead of giving them a khutbah (sermon) about patience, because they’re in the desert, you would think Musa (alayhi salam) would get up and give them a sermon about patience.  He gives them a sermon about gratitude because you will never be able to have patience if you don’t have gratitude. Gratitude comes first. If you could be grateful, Allah will take care of all your needs, and He’ll keep adding more, and more, and more.

And if you are ungrateful, unappreciative, you can’t see the good in life, Allah could have said “And if you are ungrateful, I will take away from you, I will punish you.” He would use I like he did before. He doesn’t mention it. He says إِنَّعَذَابِى لَشَدِيدٌ(inna AAathabeelashadeed), no doubt My punishment is intense. It sounds like a really harsh ayah, right? If you’re grateful I’ll increase you, and if you’re ungrateful, My punishment is intense. But actually, it’s not an “if and then statement.” It’s a nuance of the arabic language that Allah did not use the letter فَ if there was a فَ then it would mean if you are ungrateful, then my punishment is intense, for sure. There is no then, you know what that means? That means it is not an if and then statement. That means Allah did not make it where if you are ungrateful, I will punish you. Allah said if you are ungrateful. . . He’s not even finishing that sentence, He just went to a new sentence, He says, My punishment happens to be really intense. He did not connect the two grammatically. That itself is something we should be grateful for. Just the fact that Allah didn’t put a فَ there, because if He put a فَ there, it would’ve said “if you’re ungrateful, then you better know My punishment is intense.” It’s not like that, “If you’re ungrateful. . . “ nothing, there is nothing. And then He says, My punishment is really intense, and He didn’t put a فَ there, just Him not doing that is actually something we should be eternally grateful for, that itself.

What a beautiful, beautiful ayah. And what a motivation that Musa (alayhi salam) gave. It was such a powerful khutba (sermon) that he declared to the Bani Israel that He made it part of the Qur’an.

May Allah help us learn from the beautiful wisdom of the Qur’an, and make us a grateful people, and see the brighter side in things. Stop being so gloomy and pessimistic all the time. Stop looking at the down side of everything. Stop complaining all the time, stop criticizing everything, stop cynical. Be appreciative of the people around you, of your friends, your parents, your teachers, your school, your health, your physique. Stop complaining that you’re too fat, too short, too skinny. Stop complaining, start being grateful. Stop complaining that you’ve been sick for a week, and start being happy that you are not sicker than so many others. Start being grateful, and Allah will increase, and increase, and increase because that is His promise.

May Allah help us all recognize that promise of Allah and qualify us for it.

BarakAllahu Walikum, Wa-Salaamu Alaikum Qur’an Weekly.

Please note this transcript has been edited for readability purposes.

If any of this information was good and true, know that it comes from Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala. If there are mistakes we ask for Allah’s Forgiveness and Mercy. – Like us on Facebook – Follow us on Twitter – For more lectures by Nouman Ali Khan

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