Is Faith Alone Enough Against Satan?
Together with pointing out to mankind in the revealed scriptures great rewards like Paradise and terrible punishments like Hell, Almighty God gives guidance, and many admonishments and reminders, and threats and encouragement. Despite there being so many means guiding them to the straight path, the people of belief are defeated in the face of the feeble, repellent stratagems of Satan’s party, which are without merit. At one time this caused me much thought. How is it, I wondered, that while they believe, they pay no attention to Almighty God’s severe threats? Why is belief not sufficient?
According to the verse,
“Feeble indeed is the cunning of Satan (4:76)“;
they are carried away by Satan’s baseless wiles, and rebel against God. Some of my own friends, even, although they sincerely affirmed the teachings about reality they had received from me a hundred times and had an excessively good opinion of me and relations with me, they were carried away by the unimportant and hypocritical compliments of a corrupt person, and assumed a position in favour of him and against me. “Glory be to God!” I exclaimed, “can man fall so low? What a false man he was.” I slandered the man and committed a sin.
Later, the reality explained in the previous Indications became clear and illuminated many obscure points. Thanks be to God, through its light I understood both that the All-Wise Book’s powerful encouragement and assurances are completely in place, and that the people of belief being deceived by Satanic machinations is not due to lack of belief or weakness of belief. I understood too that one who commits grievous sins does not become an unbeliever, and that the Mu’tazilites and some Kharijite sects are in error by stating that “Someone who commits a grievous sin either becomes an unbeliever or is in a state between belief and unbelief,” and that that unfortunate friend of mine sacrificing a hundred lessons in reality to win the attentions of such a scoundrel was not despicable abasement and degeneration; I thanked the Almighty God and was saved from the abyss. Because as I said before, through some insignificant matter pertaining to non-existence, Satan throws man into serious peril. Moreover, man’s soul always listens to Satan. And his powers of anger and animal appetites are like both receivers and transmitters of Satan’s whisperings.
It is because of this that the Almighty God’s Names like the Oft-Forgiving and the All Compassionate are turned to the people of belief with a maximum manifestation. And He shows in the All Wise Book that His greatest bounty to the prophets is forgiveness and calls on them to seek forgiveness. Through repeating the blessed words, In the Name of God, the Merciful, and the Compassionate at the start of every Chapter and ordering it to be recited at the commencement of all good works, He shows that His all-encompassing mercy embraces the universe and is a stronghold and place of refuge. And through the command, seek refuge with God, He makes a shield of the phrase, I seek refuge with God from Satan the Accursed.
By M. Fethullah Gulen