Answered by Shaykh Irshaad Sedick
First and foremost, I know that Allah is the Most Forgiving and forgives all sins, no matter how grave they may be. However, I find myself grappling with a matter from my past. In my youth, I solemnly swore that if I were ever to commit an act of kufr (disbelief), I would not be granted pardon and would be barred from seeking re-entry. This vow was taken when I was naive and lacked understanding.
To my surprise, many years later, I deliberately committed an act of kufr, which I deeply regret. Subsequently, I repented and renewed my Shahada (declaration of faith). I am overwhelmed with shame and remorse. My question is whether the oath I took in the past, which states that I cannot be pardoned, still holds validity in my current situation. I do not intend to question Allah’s mercy, but I am tormented by anxiety due to my past actions. I seek a direct answer to this predicament as it has dramatically perturbed my peace of mind, and I am in intense fear.
In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate. May Allah alleviate our difficulties and guide us to what pleases Him. Amin.
After sincere repentance and remorse, nothing can keep you from Janna.
The Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) sometimes commanded that people break senseless and harmful oaths.
Abu Hurayra (may Allah be pleased with him) reported that the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and give him peace) said: “Verily, if one of you insists on fulfilling an oath by which he may harm his family that is more sinful in the sight of Allah, the Almighty, than breaking the oath and paying the (oath-breaking) expiation that Allah imposed.” [Agreed Upon]
His Mercy Knows No Bounds
It is crucial to remember that Allah’s Mercy knows no bounds, and He is ever-forgiving to those who sincerely turn to Him in repentance. While oaths are significant and should be honored, Allah’s Compassion and Mercy outweigh any such commitment. The Quran and Hadith guide this matter:
Allah (Most High) says, “Say, ‘O My servants who have transgressed against themselves [by sinning], do not despair of the mercy of Allah. Indeed, Allah forgives all sins. Indeed, it is He who is the Forgiving, the Merciful.” [Quran, 39:53]
The Prophet Muhammad (Allah bless him and give him peace) said, “Allah says: ‘O son of Adam, so long as you call upon Me and ask of Me, I shall forgive you for what you have done, and I shall not mind. O son of Adam, were your sins to reach the clouds of the sky, and were you then to ask forgiveness of Me, I would forgive you. O son of Adam, were you to come to Me with sins nearly as great as the earth, and were you then to face Me, ascribing no partner to Me, I would bring you forgiveness nearly as great as it.” [Tirmidhi]
Based on these teachings, it is clear that Allah’s Mercy surpasses any oath we may have taken in the past. If you have sincerely repented and returned to Allah, your past oath does not prevent you from seeking His Forgiveness.
Allah’s Mercy and Forgiveness are all-encompassing, and He honors those who acknowledge their mistakes, seek forgiveness, and strive to rectify their actions. Therefore, there is no need for excessive anxiety or fear; instead, focus on your repentance and continue seeking Allah’s Guidance and Forgiveness. The last thing you want is to belittle His Majesty by underestimating His Mercy, and Allah knows best.
I pray this is of benefit and that Allah guides us all.
[Shaykh] Irshaad Sedick
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani
Shaykh Irshaad Sedick was raised in South Africa in a traditional Muslim family. He graduated from Dar al-Ulum al-Arabiyyah al-Islamiyyah in Strand, Western Cape, under the guidance of the late world-renowned scholar Shaykh Taha Karaan.
Shaykh Irshaad received Ijaza from many luminaries of the Islamic world, including Shaykh Taha Karaan, Mawlana Yusuf Karaan, and Mawlana Abdul Hafeez Makki, among others.
He is the author of the text “The Musnad of Ahmad ibn Hanbal: A Hujjah or not?” He has served as the Director of the Discover Islam Centre and Al Jeem Foundation. For the last five years till present, he has served as the Khatib of Masjid Ar-Rashideen, Mowbray, Cape Town.
Shaykh Irshaad has thirteen years of teaching experience at some of the leading Islamic institutes in Cape Town). He is currently building an Islamic online learning and media platform called ‘Isnad Academy’ and has completed his Master’s degree in the study of Islam at the University of Johannesburg. He has a keen interest in healthy living and fitness.