Jihad: The forgotten obligation
9: The Blessed Dust of Jihaad
Abu Abbas Abdur Rahman (r) narrates that the Prophet (saw) said, "Whosoever's feet were covered with the dust in the path of Jihaad, the fire of Hell will not touch him". (Sahih Bukhari, p.394, vol.1)
The following story illustrates the Sahaba's eagerness to follow the above hadith
Abul Misbah Makrai (r) says that we were in a group travelling in Rome. The leader of this group was Malik bin Katham. Malik ibn Abdullah passed Jabir ibn Abdullah who was walking holding the rope of his donkey. Malik said, "O Abu Abdullah! Please take a seat on the donkey as Allah has gifted you with it".
Jabir (r) understood what Malik was trying to do so he answered by saying, "I am letting my donkey rest and I am self sufficient from the deeds of the people and I have heard the Prophet (saw) saying that a person whose feet have become dusty in the path of Allah, his body is made haram upon Hell (he will never enter Hell). Upon hearing this the people jumped down from the rides. The narrator states that I had never seen so many people walking as much as this day.
Ibn Hajar (r) states that if the virtue of the dust of the path of Jihaad is so great, then what would be the rank of one who spends his utmost effort in this cause - it is difficult even to imagine this status.
Abu Darda (r) narrates that the Prophet (saw) said, "Whosoever's feet were covered with the dust in the path of Jihaad, Allah moves Hell one thousand years away from this person." (at-Tabarani, Fath ul Bari, p.111)