The Conditions of Repentance By the Noble Shaykh Salih bin Fawzaan Al-Fawzaan
Translated by Abbas Abu Yahya
Could you talk to us about Tawbah (repentance), what are its conditions, and what does Tawbah an-Nasooha (sincere repentance) mean?
Tawbah is returning from sinning back to obedience and it is obligatory.
وَتُوبُوا إِلَى اللَّهِ جَمِيعاً أَيُّهَا الْمُؤْمِنُونَ لَعَلَّكُمْ تُفْلِحُونَ
《 And all of you beg Allah to forgive you all, O believers, that you may be successful. 》[noor:31]
So it is obligatory upon a Muslim if he commits a sin to hasten to repent to Allaah Azza wa Jal. Allaah responds to the one who repents.
وَإِنِّي لَغَفَّارٌ لِمَنْ تَابَ وَآمَنَ وَعَمِلَ صَالِحًا ثُمَّ اهْتَدَىٰ
《And verily, I am indeed Forgiving to him who repents, believes (in My Oneness, and associates none in worship with Me) and does righteous good deeds, and then remains constant in doing them, (till his death). 》
This is from the excellence of Allaah – Azza wa Jal. Allaah ordered with repentance and promised that He responds to the one who repents. He forgives a person his sins. However, repentance is not just on the tongue, repentance has conditions, which are necessary to be implemented. The conditions are as follows:
The first condition: leaving off the sin and keeping away from it. It cannot be said repent to Allaah while he does not keep awayfrom the sin and leave it.
The Second condition: to have firm determination of not to return to that sin again. If a person repents to Allaah but he has in his intention to return to the sin at a later date, then his repentance is only temporary, which Allaah Ta’ala does not accept.
The Third condition: that he regrets of what preceded, visualises this sin and fears it, he does not say I have repented and that is it. So he should be fearful of that sin, should have regret of what occurred from him.
These are the conditions for repentance, if they are present then Allaah – Subhanahu wa Ta’ala – accepts repentance as He promised.’