If you are interested in the audio version of the text, follow this link Al Qadaa wal Qadar Introduction [pdf] (Understand-Islam.net).
is evil attributable to Allah?
Question: Since Allah created everything, is evil, then, attributable to Allah?
[Meaning of attributable: to regard as belonging (to), produced (by), or resulting (from); ascribe (to)]
Allah, the exalted is High above evil and evil should not be attributed to Him because He is perfectly Wise, Just, and Merciful in all of His Actions.
The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) made it clear that evil is not attributable to Allah by saying:
‘I respond to your call (O Allah!), and I am obedient to your orders, all Good is in your Hands, and the evil is not attributable to You, I am by You, and to You, Blessed are Thee and Exalted’ … —(Collected by Muslim)
Evil is not attributable to Allah but is in what is decreed in His creation (Maqdoor). Evil, is in Allah’s creation, not in Himself, Attributes, Names, or Actions. Al-Maqdoor (what is decreed to occur) is either good or apparently evil. Evil is not absolute in itself, and Allah created it for a wisdom which we do not often realize.
For example Allah said:
‘Evil (sins and disobedience to Allah, etc.) has appeared on land and sea because of what the hands of men have earned (by oppression and evil deeds, etc.), that Allah may make them taste a part of that which they have done, in order that they may return (by repenting to Allah, and begging His Pardon’— (Qur’an 30:41)
The appearance of evil on land and sea is evil in itself, but there is also great wisdom and good behind it: in order that people may return to Allah.
Cutting off the thief’s hand or stoning the adulterer is an evil thing for the thief and the adulterer, but it is good for them in one respect because it is purification for them so that the punishment of this life and the Hereafter are not combined for them. It also protects the society from such evil deeds.
We ask Allah to benefit all Muslims from this article and make our efforts sincere towards Him.
Dr. Saleh As-Saleh
Based on the book “The Salaf’s Understanding of Al-Qadaa’ wal Qadar“
(Allah’s General Pre-Decrees and Their Particular Executions)
Understand-Islam.net Published: 2006
Write one benefit you gained from this week’s reading. And here are several questions to further explore in your journal.
- Is evil attributable to Allah?
- What is the proof for that?
- Why has evil appeared?
- What is the benefit behind punishment for evil deeds?