In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.
They said: “Are you indeed Yûsuf?” He said: “I am Yûsuf (Joseph), and this is my brother. Allâh has indeed been gracious to us… (Koran 12.90)
I want you to pay attention to the following segment of the ayah. If you were to forget everything that we said in the story of Yusuf (peace be upon him) make sure you don’t forget this. Because this is the essence of the story of Yusuf. Keep in mind that this story was revealed to the Messenger of Allah (SAWS) when? In Makkah. When in Makkah? In the year of sorrow, when Abu Talib passed away, Khadija (may Allah have Mercy on her) passed away and the Messenger of Allah (SAWS) found no one to support him with strength, his uncle Abu Talib. No one to support him financially, his wife Khadija. That was the year of sorrow. It was not only sorrow on the Messenger of Allah (SAWS) because he lost his uncle and he lost his beloved wife but because the dawah (of Islam) was already limited and now additional barriers were being erected in the face of the Messenger of Allah (SAWS). Before that the Messenger of Allah had strength since his uncle was providing him with an umbrella and his wife was comforting him at home. Now the Messenger of Allah has lost these two supporters and the heart of the Messenger of Allah (SAWS) was filled with sadness and sorrow. Those moments that the Messenger of Allah (SAWS) was going through are unbearable. In those moments, the Messenger of Allah is receiving sura Yusuf. In this particular situation sura Yusuf is being revealed because that is what Koran is for
…Thus (it is sent down in parts), that We may strengthen your heart thereby… (Koran 25.32)
So Koran was being revealed on the Messenger of Allah (SAWS) in the appropriate times, for the appropriate situations and to serve the appropriate purpose. So in that specific period of this year of sorrow, Allah reveals to the Messenger of Allah the story of Yusuf. It is the story of someone who went through difficulty, trials, misery, sorrow and sadness but then in the end
…Allâh has indeed been gracious to us… (Koran 12.90)
Why? Allah says in this segment of the ayah the essence of sura Yusuf:
…Verily, he who fears Allâh with obedience to Him (Taqwa – by abstaining from sins and evil deeds, and by performing righteous good deeds), and is patient, then surely, Allâh makes not the reward of the Muhsinûn (good-doers – see V.2:112) to be lost.” (Koran 12.90)
If you have Taqwa and patience eventually you will win even after awhile. If you have taqwa and patience no matter what in the end you will be victorious. And you should have no doubt in that. Saidna Yusuf was victorious in the end, in dounia (this life) and in Ehkira (the Hereafter). It is not only in dounia. In dounia and in Ehkira. But it happened after awhile, it took awhile, it wasn’t swiftly on the same day, it took awhile. Therefore it needs patience. If you do not have patience you will not be able to survive the long road. So Allah is telling the Messenger of Allah (SAWS) that there is a lot struggling, there is a lot of striving but if you have patience and you have Taqwa in Allah, the Exalted, Allah will establish you on the land. There is no victory without patience.
SAWS: May Allah exalt his mention and protect him from imperfection
Audio lecture “Lives of the Prophets”.
The full audio series may be downloaded here.