What is the meaning of Allaah’s name al-Haseeb (the Reckoner, the Bringer to Account)?
Praise be to Allaah.
Al-Haseeb is the One who is Sufficient. He is Sufficient for those who put their trust in Him, and He is Sufficient and does not need witnesses.
“Certainly, Allaah is Ever a Careful Account Taker of all things”
[al-Nisaa’ 4:86 – interpretation of the meaning]
It may also be interpreted as al-Hafeez (the Preserver), i.e., He keeps records of all actions, then He will requite them. Allaah is the Bringer to Account of His slaves, i.e., He will bring them to account for their deeds and will requite them for them according to His Wisdom and knowledge of the smallest and greatest of their actions. So they will be brought to account for good and evil, down the minutest detail.
He is the One Whose blessings and gifts are known. He knows about fractions and measurements, such as people may come to know through calculations, but He knows them without calculating. For the one who is counting knows things step-by-step, and he knows the total after he has finished calculating, but the knowledge of Allaah is not dependent upon procedures.
He is the Sufficient, in both a general and a specific sense.
In the general sense, He takes care of all His slaves with regard to the things that concern them, both spiritual and worldly, such as attaining benefits and warding off harm.
In the specific sense, He takes care of His pious slaves who put their trust in Him in such a way as to reform their worldly and spiritual affairs. For example, Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
“O Prophet (Muhammad)! Allaah is Sufficient for you and for the believers who follow you” [al-Anfaal 8:64]
i.e., He is Sufficient for you and Sufficient for your followers. As much as a person follows the Messenger (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), both outwardly and inwardly, and as much as he worships Allaah, Allaah will take care of him and give him support and victory. For only Allaah can take care of His slaves, so He is the only One in Whom they should put their trust, Whom they should fear and worship, as Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
“Is not Allaah Sufficient for His slave?” [al-Zumar 39:36]
Allaah is the Swiftest in bringing to account. When His slaves come before Him He will bring them to account and that will not present any difficulty to Him. He knows their numbers, their deeds, their lifespans and all their affairs. He has taken accounted them and He knows their amounts; He does not reckon it by counting on His fingers, but He knows it and nothing is hidden from Him. Not even the weight of an atom or a smaller or greater amount than that is hidden from Him, but it is written in a clear Record.
Ibn al-Qayyim said:
“He is the Sufficient, He fulfils [His slaves’] needs and protects [them], and He takes care of His slaves at every moment.”