The late Maulana Wahiduddin Khan has left a veritable treasure trove of writings, which we will continue to publish in his memory. The following is a column we have already published. We should start the new columns from next week.
God’s power is absolute; in front of God, man’s power is nothing. It is not true to say that the difference between God and man is one of having more power or less power; rather the difference is one of power and powerlessness. God is omnipotent, while man has not an iota of power.
What if one questions the very propriety of God having created man as a powerless creature? What if one claims that it was not fair of God to have put man in a world in which he has no power over himself, or over the world around him? This question can only be answered if a way is found in which man can completely make up for his helplessness. Nothing less than complete compensation will provide a satisfactory answer. Added to this, the compensation for man’s helplessness must come from his helplessness itself. It must be the very fact that man has no power that makes up for his powerlessness, for otherwise the answer will not fit the question. The answer to this question is given clearly in the teachings of the Quran and the Prophet of Islam. God has shown us special mercy: He has made asking sufficient to ensure that we receive. If a person makes a real, earnest supplication to God, then he will find what he seeks. Since man has no power of his own, he has to be given something in order to possess it. God has promised that one who prays for something, will receive it. One who presents his helplessness before God in the form of humble supplication will receive compensation for his helplessness.
The Prophet of Islam put it this way: “No prayer is ever rejected.” (Musnad Ahmad, Hadith No. 13357) These words of the Prophet Jesus express the same truth: “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.” (Matthew 7:7-8)