Dua is the most powerful tool that the believer has, yet it is one of the most misunderstood acts of worship. Sometimes we become desperate for an answer and can’t see how and when the answers will come.

Allah teaches us through the story of the Prophet Muhammad’s (Saw) migration to Madinah and how Banu Israel received him, that Dua has different types of answers. So in this Quranic lesson, we will learn that Dua is Answered by Allah in the following ways:

  1. Allah will give you an immediate answer
  2. Allah will delay the answer
  3. Allah will withhold the answer

When the Prophet Muhammad (Saw) got to Madinah, there was a group of Banu Israel (Children of Israel) who had settled there, waiting for the appearance of the coming Prophet and Messenger. They had migrated to this location, knowing that Allah was going to send revelation to this area as it had been described to them in their scripture. They were expecting that Allah would raise a Prophet and Messenger from amongst the children of Israel. They believed themselves to be the chosen people of God as they had once been.

In Madinah, the people were constantly at war before the coming of the Prophet(Saw). The religion of the two main tribes of Aws and Khazraj was polytheism (multiple gods). Banu Israel lived amongst them and they were constantly making dua for Allah to send them the revelation. They waited for that revelation and the advent of the Prophet.

When the Prophet (Saw) came to Madinah, and he brought with him the revelation, and he fit the descriptions of the Prophet, Banu Israel rejected him because He(saw) was an Arab.

The very people that they were making dua against, accepted the Prophet (saw) and became his followers. The Dua of Banu Israel was answered by Allah but not the way they had expected.

Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala says about this:

“When there came to them, a Book from Allah, confirming, that which was with them already, they disbelieved in it. So, the curse of Allah will be upon them.”

Surah Al-Baqarah, Verse 89:

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So, Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala says that He sent the Quran confirming that which they already had in their scripture. So, what remains of scripture from the Torah confirmed the description of the Prophet Muhammad (saw) and also the Quran confirmed what remained of scripture with them.

Allah says further clarifying, they were making dua, and they were asking Allah for something to come to them so that they would use it against the Mushrikeen (the polytheist) of Madinah. And then when it came to them, what did they do? they rejected it and denied it. So Allah says ‘The curse of Allah is upon them’ as a punishment.

This verse teaches us many lessons which we uncover in the Quranic Journey, but here I want to focus on the main lesson. The main thing here is that the Children of Israel were asking Allah, they were making Dua for something that they wanted.

When that Dua was finally answered, Allah subhanu wa ta’ala answered them in a way that was best for then, yet it was answered in a way they didn’t expect. As it wasn’t the answer they wanted they rejected it, even though they knew that this was the answer to their Dua.

This is what many of us Muslims find ourselves doing today. Often without thinking, we make dua from things and when Allah answers the dua not giving us what we expected, or giving us an alternative, we become ungrateful and complain that others have what they want. In the end, we can even end up disregarding the unwanted blessings. 

We turn our backs on blessings of Allah and we behave as though we have no blessings. I’m not saying people do this intending on rejecting the blessings of Allah. But Allah swt is teaching a lesson by informing us about this story of the Children of Israel and what they did when their Duas were answered.

Allah does not inform us about any story of the past except that He, the Most Compassionate is teaching us a lesson to save us falling into the same situation.

Ask yourself, why isn’t Allah answering my dua? Maybe there is some good in that which you don’t see yet, or maybe there is some good in what Allah has given you. Sometimes we cannot see the good right before our eyes.

How Allah Answers Dua

Before I explain the three types of answers its important to understand the nature Dua.

The first thing you should know is that Allah always wants good for you, and will give you whatever He, the Most Wise (Alhakeem) sees as being in your best interest.

The second thing we must understand is that Allah doesn’t just answer your Dua with what you asked for, Allah answers your dua with what want, but far more importantly what you need.

If you make Dua for something which is bad for you and you don’t know it, then Allah will withhold it from you and Allah will give you that which is good for you.

If you make dua for something and it’s not coming to you immediately then be patient, don’t allow shaitan to make you believe that Allah will not answer your duas. If you begin to have negative thoughts and expectations of Allah, Allah will give you what you expect.

Sometimes we begin to have a negative spiral of thoughts such as ‘maybe you are not good enough’, and so you begin to have bad thoughts about Allah, that ‘Allah isn’t answering your dua, he answers everyone else’s dua, why doesn’t he answer mine’. These thoughts are common with so many of us. If you have this, you’re not alone.

However, it’s important to recognize this problem and stop yourself. You will always get what you expect in life and death. So have good expectations, especially good expectations of Allah.

So, let’s look the 3 ways that Allah answers your Dua

  1. You ask for something and Allah gives it to you immediately. Great, now recognize this and be grateful.
  2. You ask for something and Allah delays giving it to you. Don’t despair, be patient. Allah swt does this as He loves to draw you closer. Sometimes we get desperate for something and become vulnerable. At that point, you begin to turn to Allah in earnest. You become more sincere, you become more focused in your worship and especially in your Dua. You begin to watch the sins you commit because you know sins will stop the blessings from Allah.

Do you see what’s happening here? You are becoming closer to Allah through your desperate need for Him. Only Allah can help you.

I can tell you from my own experience that I hate to depend on others, and don’t like to ask for anything. When I am desperate, I don’t like to show it and it’s normal human behavior. But when it comes to Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala, I feel no hesitation in showing my desperate need for Him, knowing that only Allah can truly give me what I want, it forces me to show my vulnerabilities and acknowledge my flaws.

Allah delays the answer because it is the best thing for you. The best thing in life is to have the greatest connection with your creator. That’s what will give you true happiness, not the things we often think about.

  1. Allah will withhold giving you what you ask for if it is bad for and you just don’t see it, or that He will give you something better on the day of Judgement.

So, you ask for something and Allah withholds it from you. Sometimes from the wisdom of Allah, He won’t give you what you ask for. There is no doubt that there is wisdom behind His decisions. If often takes years to pass before we actually realise that Allah saved us from a terrible fate.

No Dua you make will every go unanswered unless it is something Haram.

Sometimes people make Dua for things that will ultimately hurt them, yet they don’t see it. It seems a common example of this today is Haram relationships. People ask Allah to legitimize a haram relationship by giving them what they ask for.

Just remember the story of the Children of Israel when you make Dua for something. Especially if what you get in life is not what you expected. Don’t reject any blessings, don’t be ungrateful for any answer and always remember that there is some good in this for you otherwise Allah would never answer your dua in this way. Allah wants good for you, Allah created you to be from the best of people.

So, Insha’Allah when we make Dua, have good expectations of what we are going to get from Allah and whenever it comes to us, in whatever form it comes to us, we accept it, understanding that this must be good for us. I know this is repetition, but we Muslims are much like the children of Israel and we need constant reminding of simple fundamentals of faith.

Sometimes that’s difficult to deal with, but remember the believer is someone who has absolute reliance upon Allah and trusts that Allah will look after them, taking care of their every need. We need to be this type of believer.

Allah created you to be of the best of people, don’t let the Shaitan make you think that you are not good enough, don’t listen to the whisper of shaitan, those bad thoughts about Allah. He will attempt to make you think that Allah is not with you, Allah is not protecting you, and that Allah is not giving you.

Just look at what’s passed in your life, look all the goodness in your life and you will know that Allah subhanahu wa-tala is always there for you.

Don’t stop making Dua, be like the child who won’t stop asking. You will get what you want insha’Allah.

May Allah swt give you the greatest connection to Him through his Quran.  

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