Lessons in victory from Surat Al Ahzab

Lessons in victory from Surat Al Ahzab

And Allah drove back the disbelievers in their rage, totally empty-handed. And Allah spared the believers from fighting. For Allah is All-Powerful, Almighty. (33:25)

This ayah talks about the Battle of Al Ahzab, which is also known as the Battle of the Ditch and the Battle of Khandaq.

Under attack by a powerful enemy

The Quraysh mobilised different tribes, including the huge tribe of Ghatafan and the Jewish tribes. They intended to fight the Prophet (peace be on him) and wipe out every trace of Islam.

The Prophet (peace be on him) consulted with the Ansar and Muhajireen, whether they should defend themselves in Madinah or fight outside the city. They had already suffered the trauma of the Battle of Uhud, where they had disobeyed the Prophet (peace be on him) and insisted on leaving their city to defend themselves, then suffered defeat.


Allah facilitated the means for them to defend themselves through the suggestion of Salman Farsi to protect the city by digging a trench around it. This strategy was used in Persia, but unknown in Arabia.

The companions of the Prophet (peace be on him) tirelessly dug a trench that was 5544m long, 4.62m wide and 3.2m deep depending on the composition of the land, for around 10 days.


When the enemy arrived they were shocked that they could not enter the city. They could have easily uprooted the Muslims with their numbers, weapons and resources. However Allah protected them because of their trust in Him. They used all the means at their disposable and relied on Allah.


When they came upon you from above and below you, when the eyes were stupefied with horror, and hearts jumped to the throats, and you entertained misgivings about Allah. (33:10)

The believers were terrified, and the enemies besieged them for 20 nights, yet Allah did not let them penetrate their defences, with the exception of a few people who were killed.

The lesson

No matter how strong your enemy is, they will not defeat you if you have Allah’s support. As we see in Palestine. Though Israel has one of the most technologically advanced armed forces, nuclear weapons and the best armed drones, F15As, F16s, tanks and missiles, they are still terrified of the Palestinians who are fighting with their bare hands and stones.

It is not about what you have, but your reliance on Allah.

Try your best, mobilise everything you have, your friends, neighbours and allies. It is not just about your brains and muscles but your trust in Allah.

It is a tense time.

These verses show us how much Allah is testing the believers and how much the believers should trust Allah while doing their best to defend themselves.

Allah is with them without doubt.

With our duas Allah will defeat their enemies despite the disparity in their might. The truth will prevail.

May Allah protect our brothers and sisters in Palestine and give them victory against their oppressors.

Shaykh Haytham Tamim

Do support us with your duas and donations and enable us to continue spreading free content through our regular blogs, live sessions and videos.

utrujj appeal

Shaykh Haytham Tamim is the founder and main teacher of the Utrujj Foundation. He has provided a leading vision for Islamic learning in the UK, which has influenced the way Islamic knowledge is disseminated. He has orchestrated the design and delivery of over 200 unique courses since Utrujj started in 2001. His extensive expertise spans over 30 years across the main Islamic jurisprudence schools of thought. He has studied with some of the foremost scholars in their expertise; he holds some of the highest Ijazahs (certificates) in Quran, Hadith (the Prophetic traditions) and Fiqh (Islamic rulings). His own gift for teaching was evident when he gave his first sermon to a large audience at the age of 17 and went on to serve as a senior lecturer of Islamic transactions and comparative jurisprudence at the Islamic University of Beirut (Shariah College). He has continued to teach; travelling around the UK, Europe and wider afield, and won the 2015 BISCA award (British Imams & Scholars Contributions & Achievements Awards) for Outstanding Contribution to Education and Teaching.