Some Reasons Behind Increase In Reward On Deeds and The Heavy Weight of Ahlus Sunnah’s Deeds
In The Name of Allaah, The Most Merciful, The Bestower of Mercy.
Some Reasons Behind Increase In Reward On Deeds, Why Ahlus Sunnah’s Deeds Become Heavier Even if little and Ahlul Bidah’s Deeds Become Lighter Even If Numerous
Imaam As-Sadi [may Allaah have mercy upon him] was asked: What are the means and deeds by way of which reward is increased?
Answer: As for the increase of reward for a good deed to ten times the like thereof, this occurs in every righteous action, as Allaah [The Most High] said: [مَن جَآءَ بِٱلۡحَسَنَةِ فَلَهُ ۥ عَشۡرُ أَمۡثَالِهَاۖ – Whoever brings a good deed shall have ten times the like thereof to his credit]. [Surah Al-An’aam. Aayah 160]
As for an increase beyond this, it has its ways (and means). It can either be related to the performer of the deed (himself or herself) or the deed itself, or the time and the place [i.e., a specific time and place mentioned in the authentic Sharee’ah texts that reward for good deeds are increased in that time period or place].
One of the most important means of increasing (reward for good deeds) is when a person fulfils sincerity to Allaah and adheres to the path of the Messenger [peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him]. This (increase is received) when a deed is legislated [i.e., in the Sharee’ah and not innovated] and the person intends to please Allaah and hopes for His Reward- when this intention is firmly established as the drive and goal behind the deed – due to the person’s belief in Allaah, belief in the Messenger, (obedience) to the command of Allaah, seeking Allaah’s Countenance and Pleasure, just as it has been mentioned in a number of Aayaat and Ahaadeeth. Allaah [The Most High]: [إِنَّمَا يَتَقَبَّلُ ٱللَّهُ مِنَ ٱلۡمُتَّقِينَ – Verily, Allah accepts only from those who are Al-Muttaqun] [Surah al-Maa’idah. Ayah 27] Meaning: Those who fear Allaah whilst performing deeds with sincerity and adhering to the authentic path of the Messenger.
Also, the Messenger said, “Whoever fasts the month of Ramadhaan, his previous (minor) sins will be forgiven”. “And whoever stands (in the night prayer) during Ramadan out of faith and seeking reward (from Allaah), then all of his previous (minor) sins will be forgiven”. (1) and other texts besides these. And because of this, the apparent actions have more virtue over one another in the sight of Allaah due to the faith and sincerity in the hearts.
Also abandoning the forbidden desires of the soul is included amongst those righteous actions that have virtue over one another due to the different levels of sincerity, if a (person) sincerely abandons them from the bottom of his heart and not out of other than sincerity. The story of the companions of the cave [i.e. in Surah Al-Kahf] is bears witness to this. (2)
Therefore, the means to increasing (reward) is the basis and foundation we have already mentioned, such as sound creed, a strong belief in Allaah and in His Attributes, a strong desire (to worship Allaah) and a fervent desire for goodness. That is because Ahlus Sunnah Wal Jamaa’ah -in truth – and those people of knowledge, who possess knowledge of the perfect and details of the Names and Attributes of Allaah and have a strong desire to meet Allaah (in the Afterlife), the reward for their deeds are greatly increased in a manner in which others who share the same religion can neither reach nor approach in the least. And this is why the pious predecessors used to say, “When Ahlus Sunnah are held back by their deeds [i.e. not having numerous deeds], they are supported by their sound creed”. (3)
Imaam Ibn Rajab [may Allaah have mercy upon him] said: The increase of reward (on a deed) is estimated in accordance with the perfection of a person’s Islaam and strength of sincerity in that action”. 
 Minor sins forgiven when one fasts the month of Ramadhaan, see article on this link: http://salafitalk.net/st/viewmessages.cfm?Forum=11&Topic=6255
 An Excerpt from ‘Al-Fataawaa As-Sadiyyah. Page: 43. Slightly paraphrased]
 An Excerpt from ‘Al-Fatawaa As-Sadiyyah page 44 & Sharh Al-Asbaab Wal-A’maal Allatee Yudaa-afu Bihaa Ath-Thawaab page 59-65]
 Jaami Al-Uloom Wal-Hikam 2/316]
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