Bismillah Hirahaman Niraheem,
1009. Abu Sa`id Ar-Rafi` bin Al-Mu`alla (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “Shall I teach you the greatest Surah in the Qur’an before you leave the mosque?” Then he (PBUH), took me by the hand, and when we were about to step out, I reminded him of his promise to teach me the greatest Surah in the Qur’an. He (PBUH) said, “It is `Alhamdu lillahi Rabbil `Alamin (i.e., Surat Al-Fatihah) which is As-Sab` Al-Mathani (i.e., the seven oft-repeated Ayat) and the Great Qur’an which is given to me.” [Al-Bukhari].
Commentary: Allah the Almighty says: “And indeed, We have bestowed upon you seven of Al-Mathani (the seven repeatedly recited Ayat), (i.e., Surat Al-Fatihah) and the Grand Qur’an.” (15:87). This Hadith is an elaboration of the Quranic Ayah quoted above. The Prophet (PBUH) held that As-Sab` Al-Mathani is Surat Al-Fatihah (the Opening Chapter) because these seven Ayat are recited not only in every Salat but in every Rak`ah of every Salat for the reason that no Salat is valid without the recitation of this Surah, as is evident from the saying of the Prophet (PBUH): “The Salat of that person who has not recited Surat Al-Fatihah is void.” It has also been regarded as the greatest Surah of the Qur’an as it covers all the objects of the Qur’an and is a condensation of all the subjects which have been discussed in detail in its other Surah. It includes the belief in the Tauhid (the belief in the Oneness of Allah)), the worship of Allah, the Day of Resurrection, promise (of Jannah) and warning (against Hell-fire), instances of the pious and impious people of the past communities, and the lessons their conduct has for others. Abu Dawud and At-Tirmidhi have reported a Hadith in which the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said: “Al-hamdu lillahi Rabbil `Alamin (i.e., Surat Al-Fatihah) is Umm-ul-Qur’an that is its origin, basis and essence”.
1010. Abu Sa`id Al-Khudri (May Allah be pleased with him) reported about Surat Al-Ikhlas (Chapter 112): The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said, “By Him in Whose Hand my soul is, it is equivalent to one-third of the Qur’an.” According to another version, he (PBUH) said to his Companions, “Is anyone of you incapable of reciting one-third of the Qur’an in one night?” They considered it burdensome and said: “O Messenger of Allah, which of us can afford to do that?” He (PBUH) said, “Surat Al-Ikhlas [Say: He is Allah (the) One] is equivalent to one-third of the Qur’an.” [Al-Bukhari].
Commentary: One reading of Surat Al-Ikhlas has return and reward equal to the recitation of one-third of the Qur’an. This Surah mentions the Oneness of Allah. This is enough to make one realize how much Allah (SWT) likes the recitation and remembrance of His Oneness. This is the reason, He has declared Shirk (polytheism) an absolutely unpardonable sin.
Surah Al-Falaq and Surah An-Naas
1015. Abu Sa`id Al-Khudri (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) used to seek protection against the evil of jinn and the evil eyes till Surat Al-Falaq and Surat An-Nas were revealed. After they were revealed, he took to them for seeking Allah’s protection and left everything besides them. [At-Tirmidhi].
Commentary: Like men, jinns have also good and bad elements among them. Almighty Allah has endowed them with such power that if they want they can, with the Will of Allah, harm human beings. This is the reason mischievous jinns harm people. Similarly, influence of the evil eye is also true. What it means is that if a person looks at someone with greed and envy, the evil effects of his look will reach the person viewed, and because of that he has to suffer some loss or trouble or accident. For this reason, the Prophet (PBUH) would seek the protection of Allah against the jinns and the evil eye and pray in his own words for it, saying: “I seek Your protection against jinns and evil eyes of the people.” After the revelation of the Surah Al-Falaq and An-Nas (last two Surah of the Quran) he started reciting them because these were revealed for this purpose. These Surah are also called “Al-Mu`awwidhatain” which mean two Surah which provide protection. It is, therefore, very useful to seek the protection of Allah by reciting them.
1016. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: I heard the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) saying, “There is a Surah in the Qur’an which contains thirty Ayat which kept interceding for a man until his sins are forgiven. This Surah is `Blessed is He in Whose Hand is the dominion.’ (Surat Al-Mulk 67).” [At-Tirmidhi and Abu Dawud].
Commentary: This Hadith means that on the Day of Resurrection this Surah will intercede with Allah for the forgiveness of its reciter. This Hadith has been narrated (in Arabic) in the past tense because, like the past indefinite, its occurrence is definite and not open to inquiry. At some places, however, it has also been narrated in the present tense.
1017. Abu Mas`ud Al-Badri (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: I heard the Prophet (PBUH) saying, “He who recites the two Ayat at the end of Surat Al-Baqarah at night, they will suffice him.” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim].
Commentary: “Suffice him” here means that he will be protected from the evils. Its another meaning is that these two Ayat will take the place of Tahajjud (optional prayer in the late hours of the night). Imam An-Nawawi has cited the latter meaning.
1018. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: I heard the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) saying: “Do not turn your houses into graveyards. Satan runs away from the house in which Surat Al-Baqarah is recited.” [Muslim].
Commentary: This Hadith instructs us not to turn our homes into the like of a graveyard through the negligence of reciting the Qur’an in them. It also points out the excellence of Surat Al-Baqarah, which when recited, will certainly keep the devil away.
1019. Ubayy bin Ka`b (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said: “Abu Mundhir! Do you know which Ayah in Allah’s Book is the greatest?” I replied: “It is `Allah la ilaha illa Huwal-Haiyul-Qayum (Allah! none has the right to be worshipped but He, the Ever Living…)’.” (2:256) Thereupon he (PBUH) patted me in the chest and said, “Rejoice by this knowledge, O Abu Mundhir!” [Muslim].
Commentary: The words cited in the Hadith occur at the beginning of Ayat-ul-Kursi (No. 256 of Surat Al-Baqarah of the Qur’an). The merits mentioned in the Hadith are for the whole Ayah. Ayat-ul-Kursi mentions the Majestic Attributes and Mighty Powers of Allah and is, therefore, very meritorious. “Rejoice by this knowledge” means “May this knowledge be a source of respect, honour and benefit to you.” And knowledge here stands for the knowledge of the Qur’an and Hadith which is certainly a means of success in this world and the Hereafter.
1021. Abud-Darda’ (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said: “Whoever commits to memory the first ten Ayat of the Surat Al-Kahf, will be protected from (the trial of) Ad-Dajjal (Antichrist).” [Muslim].
In another narration, the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said: “(Whoever commits to memory) the last ten Ayat of Surat Al-Kahf, he will be protected from (the trial of) Ad-Dajjal (Antichrist).”
Commentary: Ad-Dajjal will appear sometime before Yaum-ul-Qiyamah. Allah, the Almighty will give him some supernatural powers the manifestation of which will shake the faith of many people. For this reason, this will be a serious trial. All Prophets warned their people against him. Our Prophet (PBUH) also warned us against him and ordered us to guard ourselves from it and strictly advised us to seek Refuge of Allah against it. This Hadith tells us the way to save ourselves from Ad-Dajjal. The recitation of the first or the last ten Ayat of Surat Al-Kahf, in the morning and evening, is very useful for this purpose. Sheikh Al-Albani has, however, regarded the last ten Ayat probably and the first ten Ayat surely effective against this mischief.
Surat Al-Fatihah and Surat Al-Baqarah
1022. Ibn `Abbas (May Allah be pleased with them) reported: While Jibril (Gabriel) was sitting with the Messenger of Allah (PBUH), he heard a sound above him. He lifted his head, and said: “This is a gate which has been opened in heaven today. It was never opened before.” Then an angel descended through it, he said: “This is an angel who has come down to earth. He never came down before.” He sent greetings and said: “Rejoice with two lights given to you. Such lights were not given to any Prophet before you. These (lights) are: Fatihah-til-Kitab (Surat Al-Fatihah), and the concluding Ayat of Surat Al-Baqarah. You will never recite a word from them without being given the blessings it contains.” [Muslim]. Commentary: This Hadith tells the excellence of the last Ayat of Surat Al-Baqarah. (That is from Amanar-Rasul to the end of the Surah). Any one who recites these Ayat with a sincere heart will receive guidance, forgiveness and bliss in this life and in the Hereafter.
Source: Riyad-us-Saliheen,Volume Two,Book of Virtues,Chapter 183