‘Aisha radhiallahu ‘anha narrated that she asked, “O Messenger of Allah, if I realize that it is Laylat al Qadr, what should I supplicate in it?” He said, “You should supplicate,
اللهم إنك عفوتحب العفو فاعف عني
“O Allah, You are the Pardoner, and You love to pardon, so pardon me.”
This is a short prayer which contains treasures that we can only begin to admire.
The word ‘Afuw in the Arabic language means to erase so that no traces are left behind. This attribute of Allah is very close to His forgiveness, but it has a deeper, more intricate meaning. To forgive a sin would be to prevent the punishment, but to pardon would be to completely erase and wipe it out. For example, on the Day of Judgement, a man’s sin will be written in his Book of deeds, but Allah will forgive his sin and grant him respite. That is His forgiveness. On the other hand, he may open his book and find that his sin has been erased as though he had never committed them! This is ‘Afuw.
His Mercy is so encompassing that He will not humiliate His chosen servants on the Day of Judgement.
عن ابْنِ عُمَرَ رَضِيَ اللَّهُ عَنْهُمَا قَالَ: سَمِعْتُ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ يَقُولُ “إِنَّ اللَّهَ يُدْنِي الْمُؤْمِنَ فَيَضَعُ عَلَيْهِ كَنَفَهُ وَيَسْتُرُهُ، فَيَقُولُ: أَتَعْرِفُ ذَنْبَ كَذَا؟ أَتَعْرِفُ ذَنْبَ كَذَا؟، فَيَقُولُ: نَعَمْ، أَيْ رَبِّ .. حَتَّى إِذَا قَرَّرَهُ بِذُنُوبِهِ وَرَأَى فِي نَفْسِهِ أَنَّهُ هَلَكَ، قَالَ: سَتَرْتُهَا عَلَيْكَ فِي الدُّنْيَا وَأَنَا أَغْفِرُهَا لَكَ
On the authority of Ibn Umar, that the Messenger of Allah sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said, “Allah will bring the believer close to Him on the Day of Judgement, and place on him His cover. He will say to His slave, “Do you remember this sin? Do you remember that sin?” The slave will say, “Yes my Lord.”
Until Allah will have him confess all his sins, and he will be certain that he is destroyed, Allah will say, “I covered these sins for you in the Dunya, and I will forgive them for you today.”
اللهم إنك عفو تحب العفو فاعف عنا و استرعوراتنا يوم القيامة
– The Sahara Bloggers (Umm Saifullah)