The Hadiths: 'Whimsical desire is forgiven for a person' and 'I destroy people by sins, and they destroy me by seeking forgiveness'

Q 5: The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said, “Whimsical desire is forgiven for a person as long as he does not act upon it or speak of it.” (Narrated by Abu Nu‘aym) The Prophet (peace be upon him) also said, “You must keep to ‘La ilaha illa Allah (there is no god but Allah)’ and seeking forgiveness from Allah, for Iblis (Satan) said, ‘I destroy people by sins, and they destroy me by (their saying), ‘La ilaha illa Allah,’ and seeking forgiveness. When I saw this, I destroyed them by (seducing them into following their) inclinations and desires, while they think that they are rightly guided.’” (Narrated by Abu Ya‘la from Abu Bakr). How can these two statements cited in the Hadith be reconciled, “Whimsical desire is forgiven” and “I destroy them by inclinations and desires”?

(Part No. 4; Page No. 450)  A: With regard to the first Hadith, we know nothing about its authenticity. The well-known Hadith in this regard is the one narrated by Al-Bukhari and Muslim (may Allah be merciful to them) in the Two Sahih (authentic) Books of Hadith from Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him) that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “Allah has pardoned my Ummah (nation) for whatever they speak in their minds, as long as they do not act upon it or speak of it.” As for the second Hadith, in his book entitled Al-Jami‘ Al-Saghir, Al-Suyuty attributed it to Abu Ya‘la and declared that it is Da‘if (weak) Hadith. The inclinations and desires in this Hadith refer to Bid‘ahs (innovations in religion).May Allah grant us success. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions.