By Sheikh Sayyed Sabiq
Jabir ibn `Abd Allah (may Allah be pleased with him) reported that the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “The ten days of the month of Dhul-Hijjah are the best days in the sight of Allah.” A man asked, “Are these days better than an equivalent number of days that are spent fighting for the cause of Allah?” The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) answered, “They are better than an equivalent number of days spent fighting in the cause of Allah. And there is no day better in the sight of Allah than the Day of Arafah. On this day Allah, the Almighty and the Exalted One, descends to the nearest heaven, and He is proud of His slaves on the earth and says to those in heaven, ‘Look at My servants. They have come from far and near, with hair disheveled and faces covered with dust, to seek My mercy, even though they have not seen My chastisement. Far more people are freed from the Hellfire on the Day of Arafah than on any other day. ’” (Ibn Hibban)
Ibn Al-Mubarak reported from Sufyan Ath-Thawri, from Az-Zubayr ibn `Ali, from Anas ibn Malik that he said: The Prophet spent the day at Arafah until almost sunset. Then he said, “O Bilal, ask the people to be quiet and listen to me.” Bilal stood up and asked the people to be quiet and listen to the Prophet. When the people were quiet, the Prophet said, “O people, a little while ago Gabriel (peace be upon him) came to me. Gave me salutations from Allah and informed me that Allah has forgiven those who spend the Day at Arafah and those who stop at Al-Mash`ar Al-Haram, and that He has guaranteed their debts.”
At this `Umar ibn Al-Khattab stood up and asked, “O Allah’s Messenger, is this for us only?” The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “This is for you and for all those who will come after you until the Day of Judgment.” `Umar exclaimed, “How plentiful and blissful Allah’s bounties are!”
Muslim and others have reported from `A’ishah that the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “Allah frees far more people from Hellfire on the Day of `Arafah than on any other day, and Allah comes closer this day and proudly says to the angels, ‘What do these people want and seek?’”Abu Ad-Darda reported that the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “On no other day does the Satan feel so belittled, humiliated, and angry as he does on the Day of `Arafah.” The reason for this is the mercy of Allah that descends (this day) and the forgiveness that He grants to people for major sins, except the day of the Battle of Badr, which witnessed a far greater mercy of Allah descending upon people, which caused great sadness to Satan.
The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) was asked, “O Prophet of Allah, what did Satan see on the day of the Battle of Badr?” “He saw Gabriel leading the troops of angels,” he replied. (Malik and Al-Hakim)
Source: Extracted from the author’s book: Fiqh al-Sunnah.