These are some insights gained from the story of Yūsuf, may Allāh raise his repute and the repute of all the prophets and messengers. Indeed, Allah related the story unto us in detail, and said at the end of it: “Indeed in their stories, there is a lesson for men of understanding.” [Sūrah Yūsuf 12:111]. A “lesson” is something by which one learns. It steers a person towards a number of ideas and useful principles. It directs a person towards things that are virtuous, and alerts one to the causes of destruction. While all stories of the prophets are like that, Allāh singled this story out with His words: “Truly, there are signs and lessons in [the story] of Yūsuf and his brothers for those asking [about the story of Yūsuf or for signs of the prophethood of Muḥammad].” [Sūrah Yūsuf 12:7]. As such, it contains various signs and lessons for anyone who asks for them and seeks guidance and integrity. This is due to what it contains of one evolving circumstance to another; from one ordeal to another; from facing challenges to being blessed; from humiliation and slavery to honour and authority; from division to unity and fulfilled aspirations; from grief to joy; from abundance to scarcity, from scarcity to abundance, from famine to plenitude and from hardship to ease, amongst the other things this great story embodies. So blessed be the one who narrated it, clarified it and explained it.
About the Author: He is the Shaykh, Abū ‘Abdillāh ‘Abd ur-Rahmān Ibn Nāsir Ibn ’Abdillāh Ibn Nāsir as-Sa‘dī from the tribe of Banī Tamīm. Born in the city of ‘Unayzah, in the region of Qasīm, Saudi Arabia in the year 1307 A.H. [1886 C.E]. His father and mother both passed away before he reached the age of ten. He memorised the Qur‘ān and mastered the rules recitation before he reached puberty. The Shaykh was humble, shy and modest. He paid no attention to the glitters of this world or it’s temptations. He cared not for position, status or fame. The Shaykh authored many books, and taught many students. It is sufficient for the unaquinted to be informed of his Tafsīr as-Sa’dī and his student, Shaykh Muḥammad ibn Sāliḥ al-Uthaymīn to recognise his excellency. He lived in the service of his religion until he passed onto Allāh in the year 1376 A.H. [1955 C.E].