Name of Allah: Ash-Shakir – Ash-Shakur

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الشاكر الشكور

Ash-Shakir – Ash-Shakur

Ash-Shakir, The Recogniser and Rewarder of Good, and Ash-Shakur, The Appreciative. He is The One Who recognises and rewards the small good that we do, and Who forgives our large quantity of sins. He is The One Who multiplies the rewards of His sincere servants. He is The One Who recognises and rewards those who give thanks to Him and Who remembers the one who remembers Him. Allah tells us that whosoever seeks to draw closer to Him by doing righteous actions, will find that Allah draws closer to them by a greater degree. (1)

Allah says:

قال الله تعالى: ليوفيهم أجورهم ويزيدهم من فضله إنه غفور شكور 

That He may pay them their wages in full, and give them even more out of His grace. Verily, He is the Oft-Forgiving (Al-Ghafur), Most ready to appreciate good deeds and to recompense (Ash-Shakur). 

Surah Faatir [35:30]

In this verse, why does Allah describes the reward as a wage? Imagine you have a worker who will carry out a job for you for a particular wage. There is a contractual commitment from both the worker (to do the job) and the employer (to pay on completion). Thus Allah has obligated upon Himself to give us our reward (after we have earned it by completing our work in this life) and so He called the reward a wage. Not only will He give us our wages in full but rather He will give us even more out of His Grace.

If we know that Allah is Ash-Shakur (that He accepts even the smallest of good acts from the believers and rewards it immensely without any limits), then we should not belittle any good act we do. We should never say, “this is too little to be accepted”.

The Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him said:

فاتقوا النار ولو بشق تمرة

Save yourself from the Hellfire by giving charity, even if it is as small as half a date. (2)

Imam Ibn Al-Qayyim said:

As for the attribute of appreciation and thankfulness of Allah, it has a lofty position. He is more worthy of the attribute of thankfulness than any thankful person, as He truly is The All-Thankful. He is The One who gives His slave the ability to do a good deed and still He thanks him for it! For example, when you give money to charity think, ‘who gave me the money in the first place?’. It was Allah. Who made you resist the temptation to keep it? It was Allah. He gave you the money, guided you to the good act and He accepted it from you and rewarded you for it!

He is thankful for the tiniest of acts of goodness and nothing is too little for Him to appreciate. He multiplies the reward of good actions. He thanks those who remember Him (by doing dhikr) by praising them amongst His Angels in the highest heavens and by making the people mention them with praise and good words. He appreciates each and every act of His slave, so if His slave was to leave anything for His sake, then Allah will reward him with that which is much better than what he left.

When the Companions, may Allah be pleased with them, left their homes to fight for the sake of Allah, He compensated them by enabling gain victory over the major emperors and powers. When the martyrs selflessly gave their own bodies for His sake and their flesh was torn apart by His enemies, He compensated them by making their souls nestle inside beautiful green birds going about freely in Paradise. These birds eat from its fruits and go to its rivers until the Day of Resurrection and then He will bring them back to their bodies in their best physical form.

We have this beautiful authentic hadith:

عن طلحة بن فراش قال: سمعت جابر بن عبدالله يقول: لما قتل عبد الله بن عمر بن حرام يوم أحد فقال رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم: {يا جابر ألا أخبرك ما قال عز وجل لأبيك؟} فقلت : بلى، فقال صلى الله عليه وسلم: {ما كلم الله أحداً إلا من وراء حجاب، وكلم أباك كفاحاً، فقال: {يا عبدي تمنى علي أعطك} قال: يا رب تحييني فأقتل فيك ثانية، قال الله عز وجل: {إنه سبق مني أنهم لا يرجعون}، قال: يا رب فأبلغ من ورائي، فأنزل الله عز وجل

{ولا تحسبن الذين قتلوا في سبيل الله أمواتاً}

From Talha bin Farish who said, I heard Jabir bin Abdullah say: When Abdullah Ibn Omar Ibn Haram, may Allah be pleased with him, was killed in battle of Uhud, the Prophet, peace be upon him, told his son Jabir,

“Jabir, would you like me tell you what Allah told your father?”. Jabir replied,

“Yes”. So he, peace be upon him, said,

“Allah never talked to anyone except with a screen [between them], but He talked to your father directly. So He (Allah) said to him, “My slave, wish anything from Me and I will give it to you.” Your father replied: “My Lord, I wish that You make me alive again so that I can fight for Your sake and be killed for Your sake again.” Allah said, “No, I decreed that death to be only once”. So Abdullah said, “My Lord I ask you to convey this to my people”. So Allah revealed the verse,

“do not think that those who are killed for the sake of Allah are dead…”

This is how Allah thanks His slaves who were killed fighting for His sake.

Out of His thankfulness Allah rewards even the disbelievers for the good acts they do. He gives them a worldly reward so none of their good deeds are wasted. He will reward them although they are the most hateful thing to Him from His creation.

Out of His thankfulness, He forgave the prostitute who saw a dog eating sand out of thirst in the desert. She felt mercy for that dog, went to a well and brought water for it to drink. Allah thanked her for her mercy to that creature and by His mercy, He forgave her for her sins and guided her to repent. All this mercy, appreciation and thankfulness was due to her kindness towards a dog.

Allah, The All-Thankful, will thank you for performing any act of goodness by rewarding you immensely and much more than what your act is worth. This is even though it is Allah who provided for you and enabled and guided you to perform this act of goodness in the first place.

So who is worthy of the name Ash-Shakur except Him?

Now, let’s ponder on Allah’s saying in Surah An Nisa,

قال الله تعالى: ما يفعل الله بعذابكم إن شكرتم وءامنتم و كان الله شاكرا عليما 

Why should Allah punish you if you have thanked Him and have believed in Him, and Allah is ever All Appreciative of good (Al-Shakir), All Knowing (Al-Aleem).

Surah An-Nisaa [4: 147]

Allah’s thankfulness forbids His slaves from being punished without having committed a crime and it forbids that their good deeds go unrewarded. Why should Allah punish you if you are thankful and if you believe in Him? There is no need for Allah to do this. He will never allow the reward of the good doers to be lost and they can have certainty it will be appreciated by Him.

Out of His Thankfulness, Allah will bring out of the Hellfire anyone who has in his heart an atom’s weight of goodness (so long as this is done with Tawhid- worshipping Allah alone.)

(Author- This tiny amount of goodness will not be in vain with Allah, Ash-Shakur. Now think about how Allah shows appreciation for this tiny amount of goodness in the heart of a slave. He will be saved from the Hellfire and not only this, but he will enjoy an eternal life in Paradise. Imagine that eternal life in Paradise as a reward for goodness amounting to the weight of tiny atom!  Even if he is punished for years, because of this amount of goodness in him, he will be brought out of the Hellfire to enjoy an eternal life in Paradise. This is our Lord. The All-Thankful.)

If there was a situation where His slave stood firm for His sake aiming to please only Him, then out of His thankfulness, Allah will reward him.

(Author- an example of this could be a situation which requires to say a word of truth in any situation in which Allah has a right over you. For example, if you see a powerful man falsely  accusing an innocent person and you know that this person is innocent, then in this situation Allah has a right over you. You should stand up and say, “this is wrong, I testify that this man is innocent.” If you do that and uphold the truth, doing it only to please Allah and not fearing the response of the powerful man or other people, Allah will thank you for this act in a way that is beyond your expectation or imagination. It is true to say each and everyone of us has during our lives situations like this in which we will be able to show Allah our sincerity to Him.)

Since Allah is The All-Thankful, the most beloved to Him are those who are characterised by the attribute of thankfulness, whilst the most hated to Him are those who are not thankful. Allah loves His own names and He loves those who are characterized by what His names necessitate of excellent manners and actions. (4)

No doubt every believer wishes to be from those who are beloved to Allah and are truly thankful believers. So how can we be thankful and grateful slaves to Allah? The best act of thankfulness to Allah is tawhid, to believe in Allah’s oneness (that He is worshipped alone without any partners). This is the best shukr (thankfulness). How is it possible that you know Allah created you and provides for you and yet you do not thank Him for this by worshipping Him alone? We need to establish the first step towards being thankful which is tawhid (monotheistic worship of Allah).

To be a thankful slave you have to relate each and every grace or bounty or whatever good happens to you, to Allah. Allah is The One Who brought this to you. This is true even about your acts of worship, like prayer. When you pray, you should say to yourself with full belief and conviction,  “Alhamdulillah (all praise is to Allah), Allah enabled and guided me to pray”.

When you are truthful in speech, you should say to yourself, “Alhamdulillah (all praise is to Allah), Allah guided me to be truthful.”

When you earn money you should say to yourself, “Allah provided me with this money”.

Never say “I was able to perform prayers due to my strong will”, or “I earned money due to my being skilful and intelligent”. Rather we attribute our success to Allah and we say, “Allah guided me to pray and Allah provided me with money”. This is true thankfulness to Allah.

A thankful slave will never use Allah’s bounties and provision to disobey Him. Do not fight Allah with His own bounty, with His own grace! Your vision is a great bounty, never use it in disobedience to Him; your wealth is a bounty, never spend it on haram (forbidden) things.

We need to know that the most hateful person to Allah is the unappreciative and ungrateful person, who deny the favors of others. Allah hates them. Beware of this and ask yourself,  “am I one of those whom Allah hates? Am I thankful and appreciative to Allah for all His bounties and graces? Am I thankful to my parents, wife or husband and to those who taught me?”. So, we need to try to practice being appreciative and thankful, with our hearts, tongues and limbs. The more you are thankful the more Allah will love you.

قال رسول الله صلى الله عليه و سلم: «لَا يَشْكُرُ اللَّهَ مَنْ لَا يَشْكُرُ النَّاسَ

Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, said , “A person has not thanked Allah if he has not thanked the people”. (5)

And he also said,

من صنع إليكم معروفاً فكافئوه، فإن لم تجدوا ما تكافئوه فادعوا له حتى تروا أنكم قد كافأتموه

“If someone does you a favour, try to reward him. If you are not able to reward him, then supplicate for him till you find that you have rewarded him.” (Meaning: Ask Allah to reward this person by forgiving him and by bestowing His graces to him). (6)

This is why it is from the Sunnah to say to someone who does you any favor: Jazak Allahu khayr (may Allah reward you with every goodness). This is a great supplication, but remember when you say it, your heart has to mean it! Ask Allah to reward this person out of your true appreciation for them.

Now let’s ponder on this verse:

قال الله تعالى: وَقَالُوا الْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ الَّذِي أَذْهَبَ عَنَّا الْحَزَنَ إِنَّ رَبَّنَا لَغَفُورٌ شَكُورٌ 

The people of Paradise will say while entering it, “All praise and thanks be to Allah Who has removed from us all grief. Verily, our Lord Is indeed All-Forgiving, most ready to appreciate the good deeds and to recompense.”

Surah Faatir [35: 34]

The people of Paradise will praise Allah with two names, The All-Forgiving and the All-Thankful. Due to these two names no one will perish or will be punished except if he really deserves it.

Because Allah has mentioned he rewards a good act ten times over and multiplies the rewards for whom He wills. As for the bad deed, it is written only as one. Allah accepts even the tiniest act of goodness and rewards it immensely. He forgives the most evil actions if we repent. Nothing is greater than Allah’s forgiveness, not even shirk (polytheism). When the polytheists of Mecca (who fought Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, at the beginning of his call) repented to Allah, asked for His forgiveness and embraced Islam, Allah forgave them and they became noble Sahaba (Companions of the Prophet)! Our Lord is indeed The All-Forgiving, The All-Thankful.

As Allah says:

مَن جَاء بِالْحَسَنَةِ فَلَهُ عَشْرُ أَمْثَالِهَا وَمَن جَاء بِالسَّيِّئَةِ فَلاَ يُجْزَى إِلاَّ مِثْلَهَا وَهُمْ لاَ يُظْلَمُونَ 

Whoever brings a good deed (Monotheism and deeds of obedience to Allah and His Messenger) shall have ten times the like thereof to his credit, and whoever brings an evil deed (polytheism, disbelief, hypocrisy, and deeds of disobedience to Allah and His Messenger ) shall have only the recompense of the like thereof, and they will not be wronged.

Surah Al-Anaam [6: 160]

How can anyone perish or be punished despite Allah’s great forgiveness and vast appreciation? How can they fail to benefit from these two great attributes of their Lord?

The only one who will fail is the one who never cared to know about Allah, who never cared to worship Allah sincerely and never cared to seek His forgiveness and repent to Him. No doubt this person deserves to be from amongst the losers on the Day of Judgement.

If you know that Allah is Ash-Shakur, then seek His closeness knowing that He will appreciate this from you and will draw you closer to Him.

Read this wonderful hadith the Prophet recited on behalf of his Lord,

قال صلى الله عليه وسلم فيما يرويه عن الله تعالى أنه قال : من تقرب مني شبرا تقربت منه ذراعا ، ومن تقرب مني ذراعا تقربت منه باعا ، ومن أتاني يمشي أتيته هرولة 

The Prophet, peace be upon him, said, “Allah says: ‘ When a slave of Mine draws near to Me a span, I draw near to him a cubit; And if he draws near to Me a cubit, I draw near to him a fathom. And if he comes to Me walking, I go to him running.’. (7)

This beautiful hadith tells us about Allah and how He will thank you for any step you take to get close to Him, by drawing you closer and closer. Just show Allah that you want to please Him and that you care to be an obedient slave to Him and Allah will show His appreciation to you by granting you a magnificent bounty, His closeness.

We praise Allah for His Beautiful Names and Attributes and we ask Him to grant us thankful hearts to appreciate His continuous grace and bounties.

Above is a transcription of a class given by teacher Zaynab El-Kateb.

1- Explanation of Allah’s Beautiful Names – Imam Nassir As-Saadi

2- Bukhari and Muslim

3- At-Tirmidhi and Ibn Majah

4- Ibn Al-Qayyim – Adat-As-Sabreen

5- Reported by Abu Dawud and corrected by Al-Albani

6- Reported by Abu Dawud and An-Nasaai

7- Reported by Muslim


  • Mai
    December 16, 2017, 2:20 pm  Reply

    Jazaakum Allahu khayran wa Baarak Allahu feekum!
    These explanations make my heart overflow with love for Allah, subhaan wa taala, wal hamdulillahi Rabbil aal ameen!

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