[91-93] There is no harm if the weak, the sick and those that have no means of providing for Jihad stay behind, provided they are sincerely faithful to Allah and His Messenger.92 There is no cause of blame against such righteous people: and Allah is Forgiving and Compassionate. Likewise there can be no ground for criticizing those people who came to you in person and requested you to provide them with mounts. For when you said to them, "I am unable to provide you with mounts, they returned with heavy hearts, their eyes overflowing with tears: they were filled with sorrow that they had no means of going forth for Jihad at their own expense.93 However, the conduct of those who are well-to-do and still ask for exemption from Jihad, is indeed very objectionable. As such people chose to stay behind with women, Allah set a seal upon their hearts: therefore now they do not know anything (about the consequences they shall incur in Allah's court).
92This implies that even those people who are otherwise excusable because of disability, sickness or indigence will be pardoned only if they are sincerely and truly faithful to Allah and His Messenger. Without this fidelity, no one shall be pardoned merely because he was sick or indigent at the time when he was called upon to go forth for Jihad. For Allah does not judge merely by appearances and treat alike and forgive all those who present "medical certificates" of their disability because of sickness, old age or some other physical defect. On the Day of Judgment, He will examine minutely the heart of each and everyone, and take into account his whole conduct, open and hidden, and will consider whether his excuse was of a faithful servant or of a traitor and rebel. It is obvious that each and every case, in spite of apparent similarity, requires a separate and different judgment. For instance, let us take the case of two men who suddenly fell ill on the eve of Jihad. One of them thanked his lucky stars for the timely disease, as if to say, "How lucky it is that I have fallen ill on the opportune moment! Otherwise, this calamity of Jihad could not have been avoided and I would have had to suffer it anyhow." On the contrary, the other man was filled with sorrow at his illness, and he cried in anguish, "Ah! what a bad luck! I have been attacked by this sudden disease at the time when I ought to have been in the battle-field instead of lying down here in bed!" One of them made his illness not only an excuse for exemption from Jihad but also tried to dissuade others from it. On the contrary, the other one, though lying in the sick-bed, went on urging his own dear relatives, friends and others to go forth to Jihad; nay, he entreated even those who were attending him, saying, "Leave me in the care of the Real Master, and go forth to Jihad. I am sure that the arrangements for my nursing will be made somehow or other: therefore you should not waste your precious chance for my sake but go forth and serve the Right Way." But the other, who stayed at home, spent all this time in spreading discontent and bad news and in damaging war efforts and in disrupting the affairs of the families of the fighters. The other man in similar circumstances did his very best to make the home front as strong as he could. Though these two men had similar excuses for exemption, they cannot be considered as equal in the sight of Allah: the second one only may expect Allah's pardon, and not the first man who was a traitor and rebel against Allah, though he might have had a genuine excuse for exemption.
93Such people as felt a strong urge for Jihad but could not join it because of some really genuine excuse, will be counted by Allah among those who actually took part in it, even though they could not join it in person and do anything practically for it. This is because they were sincerely grieved at their absence from Jihad for no fault of theirs, just as a man of the world would be grieved if he were deprived of some lucrative business or of some high profit. Allah considers such a one as on duty, because his heart was serving in the Way of Allah, though he had been deprived of active service on account of some genuine excuse. The Holy Prophet, while returning from Tabuk, stated the same thing like this: "There are some people at Al-Madinah (at this time) who have been traveling and marching all along with you through every valley. Naturally the Companions to whom he was speaking were wonder struck at this. So they asked, "While staying at Al-Madinah?" He replied, "Yes, while staying at AI-Madinah! This is because they were compelled by the circumstances to stay behind at AI-Madinah: otherwise they would certainly have accompanied you. "