Ulba bin Zayd (r.a.)
It was the 9th year of the Migration. Byzantines prepared an army consisting of 40 thousand people in order to eliminate Muslims. When the Prophet was informed about it, he started preparations.
The weather was very hot. It was time of harvest. Besides, there was famine. However, almost all Muslims joined the army. They did their best to support the army financially.
Some people who did not join the army had no excuses. However, some Muslims could not join the army because they were in financial difficulty. One of the Muslims who could not take part in the Expedition of Tabuk was Ulba bin Zayd (r.a.).
Hz. Ulba was poor. He could not even find food to eat on the way. However, he wanted to take part in this expedition very much. He went into the presence of the Messenger of Allah with his friends who were like him. He was very sad and in tears. He asked the Messenger of Allah to find an animal for him to ride. When the Prophet said, "I cannot find any animals for you to ride", he returned in tears. After a while, the following verse, which relieved him and the people like him, was sent down:
"Nor (is there blame) on those who came to thee to be provided with mount, and when thou saidst "I can find no mounts for you," they turned back, their eyes streaming with tears of grief that they had no resources wherewith to provide the expenses."
Hz. Ulba could not sleep that night. He got up and performed prayers. After that, he prayed Allah as follows:
"O Allah! You ordered jihad. You encouraged us to make jihad. However, neither I nor the Messenger of Allah had any money or equipment to make me take part in jihad. O Allah! I forgive all Muslims who violated my property, life, honor and rights as sadaqah."
The next morning, the Messenger of Allah said, "The person who forgave everybody last night! Stand up!" Nobody stood up. The Messenger of Allah (pbuh) repeated his words. This time, Hz. Ulba stood up and said, "O Messenger of Allah! It was me." The Prophet gave him the following glad tiding:
"I give you glad tidings. I swear by Allah that this sadaqah was included among the ones that were accepted."
Hz. Ulba became very glad when he heard this glad tiding. Thus, he received the reward of his good intention.
Isaba, 2: 500; Usdu'l-Ghaba, 4: 10; al-Bidaya, 5: 5.