Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam
Do sins become good deeds after repenting from them?
Answer: Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,
I pray that you are in the best of health and faith, insha’Allah.
Yes, repented sins can become good deeds.
Allah Most High says, “except those who repent, believe, and do good deeds: God will change the evil deeds of such people into good ones. He is most forgiving, most merciful.” [25.70]
The exegetes explain that evil deeds are actually turned into good deeds, and this is what is meant by this verse. Shaykh `Ali Hani confirmed this adding that this interpretation would appear to be the best considering the basis of understanding speech is doing so literally, unless there is a reason not to.
Repentance (tawba) means returning, in the Arabic language. Islamically, it is to return to Allah: through leaving sin by embracing obedience; and through leaving heedlessness and falling short in one’s submission through completely turning to Allah Most High. [see: Ten Duties of Those Truly Repentant – Abu Talib al-Makki in Qut al-Qulub – and Two Related Qur’anic Verses on Repentance]
The Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and give him peace), relating from his Lord, said, “Allah Most High has decreed good deeds and bad deeds, then He explained that whoever is on the verge of doing a good deed but does not do it, Allah will inscribe it for him as one complete good deed. And if he goes ahead and does it, He will inscribe it for him as ten good deeds up to seven hundred times or many more times. And if he is on the verge of committing a bad deed but does not do it, Allah will inscribe it for him as one complete good deed. But if he goes ahead and commits it, Allah will inscribe it as one bad deed.” [Bukhari & Muslim]
See also: A Reader on Tawba (Repentance)
And Allah alone gives success.
Checked & Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani.