In The Name of Allaah, The Most Merciful, The Bestower of Mercy.
Kab Bin Malik [may Allaah be pleased with him] added, “When I heard that he (i.e. the Prophet (ﷺ) was on his way back to Medina. I got dipped in my concern, and began to think of false excuses, saying to myself, ‘How can I avoid his anger tomorrow?’ And I took the advice of wise member of my family in this matter. When it was said that Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ), had come near all the evil false excuses abandoned from my mind and I knew well that I could never come out of this problem by forging a false statement. Then I decided firmly to speak the truth. So Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) arrived in the morning, and whenever he returned from a journey, he used to visit the Mosque first of all and offer a two-rak`at prayer therein and then sit for the people. So when he had done all that (this time), those who had failed to join the battle (of Tabuk) came and started offering (false) excuses and taking oaths before him. They were something over eighty men; Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) accepted the excuses they had expressed, took their pledge of allegiance asked for Allah’s Forgiveness for them, and left the secrets of their hearts for Allah to judge. Then I came to him, and when I greeted him, he smiled a smile of an angry person and then said, ‘Come on.’ So I came walking till I sat before him. He said to me, ‘What stopped you from joining us. Had you not purchased an animal For carrying you?’ I answered, “Yes, O Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ)! But by Allah, if I were sitting before any person from among the people of the world other than you, I would have avoided his anger with an excuse. By Allah, I have been bestowed with the power of speaking fluently and eloquently, but by Allah, I knew well that if today I tell you a lie to seek your favor, Allah would surely make you angry with me in the near future, but if I tell you the truth, though you will get angry because of it, I hope for Allah’s Forgiveness. Really, by Allah, there was no excuse for me. By Allah, I had never been stronger or wealthier than I was when I remained behind you.’ Then Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) said, ‘As regards this man, he has surely told the truth. So get up till Allah decides your case.’ So I got up… [Saheeh Al-Bukhaari. 4418]
In this section, he mentioned to us his new situation, when Allaah’s Messenger returned and they were given success with honour, assistance and reward; so what was the benefit of staying behind, even if one of its reasons was the good shades and fruits, and who are the ones similar to him, except those who are immersed in hypocrisy, the weak and the excused? And at the same time, shaytaan reminded him and sought to instruct him with various types of lies, but the darkness of lies and falsehood has been removed from him by the grace of Allaah and taking good care of him because of truthfulness in his faith and sincerity to Allaah- Lord of the entire existence; so Allaah gave him success through the greatest means of salvation after faith, which is truthfulness, especially when facing dangers and devastating events.
He said, “When it was said that Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) had come, all the evil false excuses abandoned my mind and I knew well that I could never come out of this problem by forging a false statement. Then I decided firmly to speak the truth. So Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) arrived in the morning, and whenever he returned from a journey, he used to visit the Mosque first of all and offer a two-rak`at prayer therein and then sit for the people”.
He (Kab) mentioned that great Sunnah that is almost forgotten or forgotten by many Muslims, which is that a Muslim performs two rak’ahs in the Masjid after returning from a journey. And he mentioned the attitude of the hypocrites, that is lying and false concealment, and confirming their lies by making an oath; so Allaah’s Messenger could only accept what was apparent and entrusted their secrets to Allaah -The Knower of the unseen, who knows the treachery of the eyes and what the hearts conceal. As for Kab, due to his Fiqh (sound precise understanding) and (sound) intellect, he knew that lying to Allaah’s Messenger, even if he affirmed with firm oaths, would not save him from the wrath of Allaah, and then the wrath of His Messenger. He knew that with his bright insight and sharp intellect after Allaah had granted him Tawfeeq (i.e. blessed him with understanding and the ability to act upon what is right), so he did not accept anything else, except to utter the pure truth.
[Source: https://www.mimham.net/tan-1308-82 paraphrased]
To be continued…InShaaAllaah