It was said “believer” (al-mu’min) is an agentive derived from the verb ‘to become safe’, (amina, ya’manu, amnan, and amaanan). The verb “to become safe” has two meanings; the first one is believing.
When the imam reads Surat Al-Fatihah and when he finishes, all the people in the mosque say ‘Amen’ (ameen), which means God, we believe what this imam said and we are with him, so the verb ‘to become safe’ (amina) means to believe on the one hand, and there is a verse which emphasizes this, Allah said:
They said: “O our father! We went racing with one another, and left Yusuf (Joseph) by our belongings and a wolf devoured him, but you will never believe us even when we speak the truth. (Yusuf 12:17)
On the other hand, it means ‘being safe’, Allah the Great and Almighty said:
(He) Who has fed them against hunger, and has made them safe from fear. (Quraish 106:4)
Allah’s name “the Believer” (Al-Mu’min), is it taken from believing or being safe? How do you understand this name with the first meaning?
The Believer …The Knowledgeable
The truth is that man may or may not understand his self. If he didn’t know his self and got involved in something beyond his level, he would have a great loss. We would say: ”If you had known what you have had, you wouldn’t have got involved”. He who does something beyond his level doesn’t know the essence of what he has or what his capabilities are. That person doesn’t know his self.
On the other side, there is someone who knows his self quite well, all his deeds are compatible with what he has. That example clarified some facts to you, the first meaning of “the believer” that Allah, to Whom be ascribed all perfection and majesty, knows his self, his name and everything he has got, that is the first meaning.
The second meaning: Allah, the Great and Almighty, believes His messengers. He sent Muhammad (peace be upon him) as a messenger, He believed him; that is He made people believe him through a miracle. He sent Moses as a prophet and believed him; that is He made people believe him through a miracle. He sent Jesus as a messenger and gave him a miracle to make people believe him, so the second meaning is “believing”.
This means that Allah keeps His promises by His deeds, keeping Allah’s promises is a confirmation of His promises. He promised you the good life. If you have the good life, it means that He kept His promise. Keeping the promise is an evidence to the truthfulness of His prophets. That is He gives them the proofs that make people believe them. He gives the believers proofs.
Dear brother, you read the Qur’an, what makes you cling to it and be attached to it? Because all the events you are living are confirmation of this Qur’an. If you buy and sell honestly, you will have great comfort and Allah will provide you with good income and draw people to you. If you are honest, Allah will lift your name among people.
So if you apply what you are asked to do, all the events come to confirm this promise or show you that this promise is true.
It is one of the meanings of “the believer” that is; making His prophets as believers supported by miracles makes His Qur’an believable, that is if you believe in it and make good deeds, you will be granted a good life. What made you believe His words? This good life or the wretched life?
If you are rightly guided by Allah (the Great and Almighty) in all your aspects of life, you will see that all the events confirm what came in the Qur’an. Therefore, Allah is a “believer”, that is He made his servants as believers, since all Allah’s deeds are confirmation of His promises and threats, Allah, to whom all be ascribed all perfection and majesty, said:
Truly, Allah defends those who believe. Verily, Allah likes not any treacherous ingrate to Allah; those who disobey Allah but obey Satan. (Al-Hajj 22:38)
You must have felt in many incidents where Allah inspires someone you don’t know to defend you, when Allah the Great and Almighty says:
He (Allah) said: “Get you down (from Paradise to the earth, both of you, together, some of you are enemies to some others. Then if there comes to you guidance from Me then whoever follows My guidance he shall neither go astray, nor shall be distressed”. (Ta-Ha 20:123)
The third meaning is that he provides security. Simply, we mention the eye. If you drive your vehicle at daytime, you will feel safe because the vision is distant, but at night you are dazzled with lights and you feel worried.
Driving at night is associated with worry and surprises since the light in the vehicle does not reveal everything and it is limited. The longer the sight, the more security there is. Then He gave you the eye in order to see your way, gave you the ear in order to discover movements during the night.
Therefore, sensitive hearing is one way of security; the eye is a mean of security, smell is another mean of security, if the food smells bad, it means that it is rotten. He made the nose above the mouth to give you nutritional security.
He gave you a hand to draw back damage, a foot to move from one way to another, all these to provide you with security, and this is another meaning of “the believer”.
Dr. Al-Nabulsi is an outstanding Syrian Islamic scholar. He has written a number of Islamic books, most remarkable of which are: “Encyclopedia of the Beautiful Names of Allah”, “Encyclopedia of Scientific Miracles of the Holy Quran and Prophetic Sunna”, “Outlooks on Islam”, besides articles for some Syrian, Arab, Islamic, and Western magazines and newspapers. He also delivers a number of lessons, symposiums and interviews on Arab, Islamic radios and TVs.