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Does doing major sins prevent repentance and good deeds from being accepted?

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  • Does doing major sins prevent repentance and good deeds from being accepted?

    I am a Muslim woman, but the Shaytaan has been controlling me for a while. I committed major sins, but now I regret it. I have turned to Allaah and repented to Him, but I heard that no fasting or prayer will be of any benefit to me because I have committed the worst of major sins. Is that true? Will Allaah really never accept my repentance?.

    Praise be to Allaah.

    We praise Allaah for having guided you to repent, and we ask Him to make you steadfast in adhering to His religion, and to grant you a good end. You should note that you have been greatly blessed and must give thanks to Allaah. How many sinners die without having repented? How many of those who are astray die before turning back to their Lord? Undoubtedly the fact that Allaah has enabled you repent is a great event in your life, and this should be a time when you start to obey Him and strive harder in worshipping Him.

    You should realize that what you have heard about repentance, prayer and fasting not being accepted from one who has committed major sins is false, and it is speaking about Allaah without knowledge. There is a great deal of evidence in the Book of Allaah and the Sunnah of His Messenger (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) to indicate that Allaah accepts His slave’s repentance from all sins, no matter how great they are, and it is not permissible for anyone to try to stop a person repenting, no matter how great and how heinous his sins.

    Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

    “Say: O ‘Ibaadi (My slaves) who have transgressed against themselves (by committing evil deeds and sins)! Despair not of the Mercy of Allaah, verily, Allaah forgives all sins. Truly, He is Oft‑Forgiving, Most Merciful”
    [al-Zumar 39:53]

    Allaah says, stating that He forgives the greatest of sins (interpretation of the meaning):

    “And those who invoke not any other ilaah (god) along with Allaah, nor kill such person as Allaah has forbidden, except for just cause, nor commit illegal sexual intercourse and whoever does this shall receive the punishment.

    69. The torment will be doubled to him on the Day of Resurrection, and he will abide therein in disgrace;

    70. Except those who repent and believe (in Islamic Monotheism), and do righteous deeds; for those, Allaah will change their sins into good deeds, and Allaah is Oft‑Forgiving, Most Merciful”

    [al-Furqaan 25:68-70]

    This clearly indicates that Allaah forgives all sins – even shirk – and it tells us of an immense bounty, which is that bad deeds are turned to good deeds.

    Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah (may Allaah have mercy on him) said:

    No sin is too great for Allaah to forgive for the one who repents, rather He forgives shirk and other sins for those who repent, as Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

    “Say: O ‘Ibaadi (My slaves) who have transgressed against themselves (by committing evil deeds and sins)! Despair not of the Mercy of Allaah, verily, Allaah forgives all sins. Truly, He is Oft‑Forgiving, Most Merciful”
    [al-Zumar 39:53]

    This verse is general in meaning because it is addressed to all those who repent. End quote.

    Majmoo’ al-Fataawa, 2/358

    Al-Bukhaari and Muslim (6766) narrated from Abu Sa’eed al-Khudri (may Allaah be pleased with him) that the Prophet of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “There was among the people who came before you a man who killed ninety-nine people. Then he asked about the most knowledgeable person on earth, and was directed to a hermit, so he went to him, told him that he had killed ninety-nine people, and asked if he could be forgiven. The hermit said, ‘No,’ so he killed him, thus completing one hundred. Then he asked about the most knowledgeable person on earth and was directed to a scholar. He told him that he had killed one hundred people, and asked whether he could be forgiven. The scholar said, ‘Yes, what could possibly come between you and repentance? Go to such-and-such a town, for in it there are people who worship Allaah. Go and worship with them, and do not go back to your own town, for it is a bad place.” So the man set off, but when he was halfway there, the angel of death came to him, and the angels of mercy and the angels of wrath began to argue over him. The angels of mercy said: ‘He had repented and was seeking Allaah.’ The angels of wrath said: ‘He never did any good thing.’ An angel in human form came to them, and they asked him to decide the matter. He said: ‘Measure the distance between the two lands (his home town and the town he was headed for), and whichever of the two he is closest to is the one to which he belongs.’ So they measured the distance, and found that he was closer to the town for which he had been headed, so the angels of mercy took him.”

    Al-Tirmidhi (3540) narrated that Anas ibn Maalik (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: I heard the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) say: “Allaah, may He be blessed and exalted, said: ‘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 and I would not mind.’” Classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh al-Tirmidhi.

    Ibn Maajah narrated that ‘Abd-Allaah ibn Mas’ood (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “The one who repents from sin is like one who did not sin.” Classed as hasan by al-Albaani in Saheeh Ibn Maajah.

    These verses and ahaadeeth indicate that Allaah forgives all sins, no matter how great or how many, for the one who repents to Him.

    So strive in worship and obedience, regret the negligence and sins of the past, and note that Allaah has no need of His slaves yet despite that He rejoices in their repentance, and even turns their bad deeds into good deeds.

    We ask Allaah to help you to remember Him, give thanks to Him and worship Him properly.

    And Allaah knows best.
    Islam Q&A

    http://islam-qa.com/en/ref/65621
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