In Surah Nisa, verse 64 we read:
ما أَرْسَلْنا مِنْ رَسُولٍ إِلاَّ لِيُطاعَ بِإِذْنِ اللَّهِ وَ لَوْ أَنَّهُمْ إِذْ ظَلَمُوا أَنْفُسَهُمْ جاؤُكَ فَاسْتَغْفَرُوا اللَّهَ وَ اسْتَغْفَرَ لَهُمُ الرَّسُولُ لَوَجَدُوا اللَّهَ تَوَّاباً رَحيماً
We did not send any apostle but to be obeyed by Allah's leave. Had they, when they wronged themselves, come to you and pleaded to Allah for forgiveness, and the Apostle had pleaded for forgiveness for them, they would have surely found Allah all-clement, all-merciful [4:64]
My questions are:
- What is the point in encouraging people to come to the Prophet (pbuh) so that he would beg for forgiveness for them?
- Is there anything wrong with begging Allah for forgiveness without coming to the Prophet (pbuh)?
- If they had pleaded to Allah for forgiveness without coming to the Prophet, would have they still found Allah all-clement, all-merciful?