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  • Belief In The Hereafter: (1) Testimonies (Arguments)

    Posted by Umer on August 11, 2020 at 8:26 pm

    Testimonies (Arguments):

    The first thing is man’s awareness of good and evil. It is because of this awareness that his chiding conscience rebukes him on every evil. It is a small court of justice which is found within every person which delivers its unbiased verdict at all times. Whether he accepts it or not, a person is able to clearly listen to this verdict after every blemish that emanates in his thoughts and deeds; this continues until he becomes so deeply involved in evil that this evil completely surrounds his faculties thereby lulling the calls of his conscience to sleep. This internal system of rebuke is a testimony of his own inner-self and is called the testimony of the rebuking-self. The Quran presents it and tells man that he will not be left unaccountable for whatever he does. He should know that just as there exists a lesser abode of judgement within man, similarly a greater abode of judgement will one day be set up for the whole world; when it takes place, he will be held accountable before his Lord and rewarded and punished accordingly on the basis of his deeds. If a person denies such a day of accountability, then it is like denying himself and playing mischief before one’s conscience:

    لاَأُقْسِمُ بِيَوْمِ الْقِيَامَةِوَلَا أُقْسِمُ بِالنَّفْسِ اللَّوَّامَةِأَيَحْسَبُ الْإِنسَانُ أَلَّنْ نَجْمَعَ عِظَامَهُبَلَى قَادِرِينَ عَلَى أَنْ نُسَوِّيَ بَنَانَهُبَلْ يُرِيدُ الْإِنسَانُ لِيَفْجُرَ أَمَامَهُيَسْأَلُ أَيَّانَ يَوْمُ الْقِيَامَةِفَإِذَا بَرِقَ الْبَصَرُوَخَسَفَ الْقَمَرُوَجُمِعَ الشَّمْسُ وَالْقَمَرُيَقُولُ الْإِنسَانُ يَوْمَئِذٍ أَيْنَ الْمَفَرُّكَلَّا لَا وَزَرَإِلَى رَبِّكَ يَوْمَئِذٍ الْمُسْتَقَرُّيُنَبَّأُ الْإِنسَانُ يَوْمَئِذٍ بِمَا قَدَّمَ وَأَخَّرَبَلْ الْإِنسَانُ عَلَى نَفْسِهِ بَصِيرَةٌوَلَوْ أَلْقَى مَعَاذِيرَهُ(75: 1-15)

    By no means! I present as evidence the Day of Judgement itself. And [they think that the Day of Judgement is a far-fetched reality]. By no means! I present as evidence [this] reproaching soul within you. Does man think that We will not be able to bring together his bones? Why not? We can put together his very finger tips. [No this is not so]; in fact [the truth is that] man wants to be mischievous before his [conscience]. He asks: “When will the Day of Judgement be?” But on the day when the sight is dazed and the moon eclipsed and the sun and the moon brought together, this very man will say: “Whither to flee?” – No! there is no refuge now! Towards your Lord that Day is the resting place. On that Day, man will be informed what he sent forth and what he left behind. [No he cannot deny it]; in fact, he himself is a witness upon his own self however much he may put up excuses. (75:1-15)

    Imam Amin Ahsan Islahi, while explaining this argument of the Quran, writes:

    Now the question is that if a person has a guardian within his conscience which chides him on every evil that emanates from him, then how can it be imagined that man will be not be held accountable for his deeds. Why would he go scot-free if he spends a life in whatever manner he wants to while negating the calls of his conscience? If a person will not be held accountable for his deeds, then where has this chiding conscience come into him from? If his Creator is unconcerned about the good and evil which emanates from him, then why and from where has He given him the feeling of being elated at a good deed and being pricked by his conscience at a bad one? Then from here another question arises: If God has set up a miniature court of justice in every person, then why will He not set up a greater court of justice which will hold the whole world accountable for good and evil which emanate from it and not reward and punish people accordingly? Any person who deliberates on these questions while disregarding his desires will reach the conclusion that the very being of a person bears witness that he has innate knowledge of good and evil; he will not be left unaccountable; there definitely shall come one day when he will be punished for any misdeeds he may have done and be rewarded for his good deeds. To remind a person of this very Day, the Almighty has placed a miniature court of justice within a person’s soul so that man does not remain indifferent to it, and if ever he becomes indifferent he can catch a glimpse of it by merely reflecting on his inner-self. It is this very reality which sages have taught us by saying that man is a miniature world and within this miniature world there is a reflection of the greater world. If a person has a true comprehension of his own self, he is able to comprehend both God and the Hereafter.[1]

    The second thing is the nature of man by virtue of which he likes justice and dislikes injustice. No doubt, in spite of this dislike he still perpetrates injustice but this is not because he is not able to distinguish justice from injustice or that he likes the latter – it is because he loses his balance and poise by being overcome with desires and emotions. All of us know that a person may want to steal from another person’s house but he would never like someone to steal from his own house; he may kill someone but would never like that anyone take his life or that of his relatives. Similarly, a person may be dishonest in weighing his merchandise for others but would never be happy if others are dishonest with him in this regard. If one asks these thieves, killers and swindlers about their actions they would confess that each of these is a crime and should be eliminated. Thus no one in his senses can regard good and evil to be equal or that both be dealt with in the same manner. The Quran presents these facts and asks the rejecters of the Day of Judgement:

    أَفَنَجْعَلُ الْمُسْلِمِينَ كَالْمُجْرِمِينَمَا لَكُمْ كَيْفَ تَحْكُمُوْنَ(68: 35-36)

    Are We to deal with those who submit to Us as We deal with those who transgress? What is the matter with you? What is this judgement you give? (68:35-36)

    The third thing is the incompleteness found both in man and in this world. From whatever aspect these two are seen, it is clearly evident that in every single part of theirs the great power and wisdom of their maker is apparent. In everything great meaningfulness, matchless order and sequence, unrivalled mathematical perfection and symmetry, extra-ordinary thoroughness and immense beauty of creativity astounds one’s intellect. On the other hand, if one tries to understand both of them in their totality, one sees great incompleteness and lack of purpose in them.

    Consequently, man observes that everything through its very existence proclaims that it has been created for him, but nothing in this world tells him his own purpose of creation.

    Also, one is not able to see any system which judges if human beings have or have not fulfilled the purpose, if ever there is one, for which they have been created.

    Man is innately aware of the fact that he should be held accountable for each favour he has been blessed with; however, he has been left in this world without any such accountability. Thus when he dies, he calmly leaves this world without giving any account of these favours.

    To make people adhere to truth and justice is the need of mankind, but man is not able to see any real motive for this in himself or in the world around him. Then the circumstances of this world negate what his conscience desires. It is his natural instinct that justice and oppression and good and evil must be discriminated; however, in this world, this natural instinct of his is flouted in the worst possible way. Thus, there are many people who have left this world without being rewarded for their good deeds and there are many who have left this world without being punished for their evil deeds.

    Contrary to all other creations like plants, animals and inorganic objects, man possesses an awareness of the future; however, this future always eludes him.

    Hidden within him are great desires, but seldom are they fulfilled and often his wishes do not materialize. So much so, the intense desire of observing God running the affairs of this universe once he professes faith in Him is never fulfilled in this world.

    Man is not able to go to the extent his imagination can take him. He wants to pierce the skies, penetrate the earth and infiltrate into his own soul as far as he can. To satisfy his ambitions, he has tried to explore the skies and split the atom; however, all this effort has only proven to him that he cannot realize all the potentials of his imagination.

    He is always searching for a world in which he can liberate himself from the sorrows and hardships of this world and from its limitations and live a life of happiness and contentment. This desire is found in him since time immemorial. However, he is never able to obtain this sought after world of his; on the contrary, he takes to his grave these cherished desires.

    Every single word which a person speaks and every single deed that emanates from him are being safely recorded so that they can be recalled whenever required. All his good and evil thoughts are also permanently noted. The passage of time and change in circumstances do not affect these records. However, what is the purpose of this arrangement? Nothing in this world answers this question.

    The personality of a human being has an existence of its own which is independent of his corporal being. The innumerable cells from which his body is made keep dying and are replaced every now and then; however, his real personality always remains intact. His knowledge, memory, ambitions, habits and thoughts all remain the same, and are in no way altered by this cycle. Then where does this personality come from and where does it go? We are unable to answer this question too.

    Millions of planets, much larger than the planet man inhabits, exist in the universe but there appears no trace of any life in them. Then why have they been created? Man does not know.

    These facts are irrefutable. After this, there can only be two possibilities: first, to regard this world as a meaningless place and come to the conclusion that it is the workmanship of a merry-maker and nothing more; second, to understand it in combination with a Day of Judgement and that eternal kingdom of God which has been so vehemently affirmed and declared by His prophets. What is the verdict of intellect? Every person can comprehend:

    أَفَحَسِبْتُمْ أَنَّمَا خَلَقْنَاكُمْ عَبَثًا وَأَنَّكُمْ إِلَيْنَا لَا تُرْجَعُونَ فَتَعَالَى اللَّهُ الْمَلِكُ الْحَقُّ لَا إِلَهَ إِلَّا هُوَ رَبُّ الْعَرْشِ الْكَرِيمِ (23: 115-116)

    So do you think that We have created you in vain and that to Us you would never be returned? So very lofty is the status of God, the true king. There is no god but Him, the Lord of the glorious throne. (23:115-116)

    وَمَا خَلَقْنَا السَّمَاء وَالْأَرْضَ وَمَا بَيْنَهُمَا لَاعِبِينَ لَوْ أَرَدْنَا أَن نَّتَّخِذَ لَهْوًا لَّاتَّخَذْنَاهُ مِن لَّدُنَّا إِن كُنَّا فَاعِلِينَ (21: 16-17)

    And it was not for gaming and sport that We created the heavens and the earth and all that lies between them. Had it been Our will to create a game, We could have found one near at hand if We wanted to do this. (21:16-17)

    Imam Amin Ahsan Islahi, while interpreting these verses, writes:

    … mentioned here is the reason that if after this world there is no Day of Judgement, it has always remained in existence and will continue like this forever, whether anyone does virtuous deeds or bad ones or does oppression or justice and its Creator is unconcerned about the good and evil found in it, then this only means that He has created an amusement to entertain Himself: He will amuse Himself with it till whenever He likes, and when He gets bored, He will just end it and create some new amusement for Him for His enjoyment and pastime. The verse therefore stresses that the heavens and the earth and what is between them have not been created for amusement. From the very way it is, this world bears testimony to the fact that it has been created by a just, wise and merciful being. It is not an object of amusement for a merry-maker or a warring place of supernatural beings or a theater of a deity; in fact, every single object of this wisely created world bears witness that its creator has created it with a great purpose and it is an obvious requirement of His justice and wisdom that a day come when this purpose is fulfilled.[2]

    This is the judgement passed by sense and reason. However, as soon as one gets to know that the Hereafter exists all these questions get an answer and all voids are filled and all known phenomena are explained and everything becomes set in its place; the world now seems to be complete, which in the absence of the Hereafter it did not; the real grandeur of this universe is thus revealed; man can now die with the certainty that whatever he was not able to obtain before his death, he will definitely obtain it after his death; he too will be blessed with the certitude and the calm which is found in the universe; he will be given an eternal world in which he can realize his innumerable and unending desires and where, on the one hand, there will be the eternal Paradise of pleasure, finesse and meaningfulness, and, on the other, the Fire of Hell where the evil will endure their punishments.

    As a result, the relationship between this world and the next is that of what each member of a pair has with the other. Consequently, if causes have been joined with effects, potentials with their devices, natures with their intentions and souls with bodies and as a result are presenting a meaningful whole, then the Hereafter too is one member of the pair of which the other member is the Herein and both complement one another and become meaningful:

    وَمِن كُلِّ شَيْءٍ خَلَقْنَا زَوْجَيْنِ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَذَكَّرُونَ (49:51)

    And We have made pairs of everything so that you may take heed. (51:49)

    After this, the heart of every sensitive person shudders at the concept of accountability and it is as if he sees the Day of Judgement before his very eyes. He sees that the earth and the heavens are burdened with it in the very manner a pregnant lady carries the burden of her child about which it cannot be said when it shall be delivered:

    يَسْأَلُونَكَ عَنِ السَّاعَةِ أَيَّانَ مُرْسَاهَا قُلْ إِنَّمَا عِلْمُهَا عِندَ رَبِّي لاَ يُجَلِّيهَا لِوَقْتِهَا إِلاَّ هُوَ ثَقُلَتْ فِي السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالأَرْضِ لاَ تَأْتِيكُمْ إِلاَّ بَغْتَةً (187:7)

    They ask you about the Hour of Doom: When will it come? Tell [them]: “Only my Lord has knowledge of it. None but He shall reveal it when its appointed time comes. Both the heavens and the earth are under its burden. It will suddenly overtake you.” (7:187)

    Consequently, a person proclaims to God: “You have not made this world without a purpose; it is against Your grand wisdom and knowledge to do something without a purpose; I know that this world is going to end on a Day of Judgement where people who thought that this world is a place of amusement for its Creator will be punished. I seek refuge with You from such a fate”:

    إِنَّ فِي خَلْقِ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالأَرْضِ وَاخْتِلاَفِ اللَّيْلِ وَالنَّهَارِ لآيَاتٍ لِّأُوْلِي الألْبَابِالَّذِينَ يَذْكُرُونَ اللّهَ قِيَامًا وَقُعُودًا وَعَلَىَ جُنُوبِهِمْ وَيَتَفَكَّرُونَ فِي خَلْقِ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالأَرْضِ رَبَّنَا مَا خَلَقْتَ هَذا بَاطِلاً سُبْحَانَكَ فَقِنَا عَذَابَ النَّارِ(3: 190-191)

    In the creation of the heavens and the earth, and in the alternation of night and day, there are many signs for men of understanding; those who remember God while standing, sitting, and lying down, and reflect on the creation of the heavens and the earth. [Their prayer is:] “Lord! You have not created this without a purpose. Glory be to You for You do not do anything in vain! Save us from the punishment of the Fire.” (3:190-191)

    The fourth thing is the attributes of God the effects of which are evident in every speck of this universe. The attributes of providence and mercy in particular need one’s attention. After witnessing the extra-ordinary arrangement made by the Lord of this world to nurture and nourish man, how can a person of intellect think that his Lord will leave him unaccountable and how can it be expected from the merciful and gracious God to not punish people who have made this world a place of oppression and injustice. For this very reason, the Quran has pointed out at a number of places that the Day of Judgement is the consequence of God’s providence and mercy, power and wisdom. After professing belief in God, no one can deny it.

    In Surah An‘am, it is said:

    كَتَبَ عَلَى نَفْسِهِ الرَّحْمَةَ لَيَجْمَعَنَّكُمْ إِلَى يَوْمِ الْقِيَامَةِ لاَ رَيْبَ فِيهِ (12:6)

    He has made mercy mandatory on Himself. He will definitely gather you to take you to the Day of Judgement about which there is no doubt. (6:12)

    In Surah Naba, it is said:

    أَلَمْ نَجْعَلْ الْأَرْضَ مِهَادًاوَالْجِبَالَ أَوْتَادًاوَخَلَقْنَاكُمْ أَزْوَاجًاوَجَعَلْنَا نَوْمَكُمْ سُبَاتًاوَجَعَلْنَا اللَّيْلَ لِبَاسًاوَجَعَلْنَا النَّهَارَ مَعَاشًاوَبَنَيْنَا فَوْقَكُمْ سَبْعًا شِدَادًا وَجَعَلْنَا سِرَاجًا وَهَّاجًاوَأَنزَلْنَا مِنْ الْمُعْصِرَاتِ مَاءً ثَجَّاجًالِنُخْرِجَ بِهِ حَبًّا وَنَبَاتًاوَجَنَّاتٍ أَلْفَافًاإِنَّ يَوْمَ الْفَصْلِ كَانَ مِيقَاتًا(78: 6-17)

    [They should behold:] Have We not made the earth a cradle and made the mountains [its] pegs? And not created you in pairs? And not made your sleep a means of comfort [for you]? And not made the night a clothing [for you] and the day a time to earn [your] livelihood? And not built above you seven sturdy [skies]? And not placed [in them] a glowing lamp [this sun]? And not sent down abundant water from dripping clouds that We may bring forth grain and vegetation and gardens of luxurious growth? [All this clearly testifies that] indeed the Day of Judgement has an appointed time. (78:6-17)

    Similarly, in Surah Qaf, it is said:

    أَفَلَمْ يَنظُرُوا إِلَى السَّمَاء فَوْقَهُمْ كَيْفَ بَنَيْنَاهَا وَزَيَّنَّاهَا وَمَا لَهَا مِن فُرُوجٍ وَالْأَرْضَ مَدَدْنَاهَا وَأَلْقَيْنَا فِيهَا رَوَاسِيَ وَأَنبَتْنَا فِيهَا مِن كُلِّ زَوْجٍ بَهِيجٍ تَبْصِرَةً وَذِكْرَى لِكُلِّ عَبْدٍ مُّنِيبٍ وَنَزَّلْنَا مِنَ السَّمَاء مَاء مُّبَارَكًا فَأَنبَتْنَا بِهِ جَنَّاتٍ وَحَبَّ الْحَصِيدِ وَالنَّخْلَ بَاسِقَاتٍ لَّهَا طَلْعٌ نَّضِيدٌ رِزْقًا لِّلْعِبَادِ وَأَحْيَيْنَا بِهِ بَلْدَةً مَّيْتًا كَذَلِكَ الْخُرُوجُ (50: 6-11)

    Then have they never observed the sky above them how We have fashioned and adorned it and [not observed that] it is flawless. And We have spread the earth and set upon it mountains and brought forth in it all kinds of beautiful plants as an insight and reminder for every person who turns [towards the truth]. And We sent down blessed water from the skies with which We thence brought forth gardens and the harvest grain, and tall palm-trees stacked with clusters of dates as a means of sustenance for men and from it We enlivened a dead piece of land. Such shall you rise [from the earth]. (50:6-11)

    Imam Amin Ahsan Islahi, while explaining these verses, writes:

    Here the Almighty has directed the attention of the rejecters of the Day of Judgement towards the obvious signs of His power, providence and wisdom which can be observed all around man. These signs are enough to create insight and strike a reminder in a person who has a heart which has the ability to turn towards the truth.

    First, the Almighty has directed man’s attention to His great power and wisdom: have they not seen the sky above them how it has been raised high and decked with stars? It is a miracle of God’s power and wisdom that the immeasurable sky is free from the slightest of flaws. The implication is that how is it impossible for someone whose immense power and wisdom they see above them to create them again?

    After this, besides His power and wisdom, the Almighty has directed man’s attention to the tremendous system of providence and sustenance found around him. He is asked to observe how the Almighty has spread out the earth beneath their feet and to maintain its balance how He has nailed mountains into its expanse and how great a variety of fodder has He caused to grow from the earth. These plants which provide man with sustenance are also a means of satisfying his aesthetic taste. The implication is that can it be difficult for someone to re-create mankind from dust whose great signs of power, wisdom and providence they are witnessing all around them? Will the Almighty who has made elaborate arrangements for their sustenance leave them to eat, drink and be merry and never ask them of these blessings?[3]

    The fifth thing is the manifestation of God’s judgement in this very world. It took place through prophets who were elevated to the status of messengers. The Almighty blessed them with extra-ordinary miracles, helped them through Gabriel and before the actual Day of Judgement set up through these messengers miniature Days of Judgement on this earth. The objective was to prove the existence of God and the Hereafter before the people in the very manner scientific facts are proven through empirical evidence in a laboratory. After this, obviously no one is left with an excuse before the Almighty to not accept the truth.

    The methodology adopted for presenting this empirical evidence was that these messengers communicated the truth to their people and then declared that they will set up a court of justice for their people on behalf of the Almighty. The foretold reward and punishment on the basis of one’s faith and deeds will take place for their people in this very world. Just as physical laws are unalterable and manifest come what may, in the same manner this moral law of God shall manifest itself before them once they are left with no excuse to deny the truth. Thus those among the people of these messengers who accept their calls shall attain salvation both in this world and in the next and shall be dominant on their adversaries. And those who reject these calls shall be humiliated and will receive divine punishment.

    Whenever this prediction was made and about whichever people it was made, it was made in the most impossible and unbelievable of circumstances; however, it is an amazing historical reality that it came true whenever it was made and came true in such a manner that people in fact witnessed God administering justice and the heavens and the earth were filled with His majesty and grandeur. The Quranic words used are: (4:165) لِأَلَّا يَكُونَ لِلنَّاسِ عَلَى اللَّهِ حُجَّةٌ بَعْدَ الرُّسُلِ<i style=”font-weight: bold;”>(so that mankind after the coming of these messengers is left with no excuse against the Almighty, (4:165)). Then, as a general principle, it was stated:

    وَلِكُلِّ أُمَّةٍ رَّسُولٌ فَإِذَا جَاء رَسُولُهُمْ قُضِيَ بَيْنَهُم بِالْقِسْطِ وَهُمْ لاَ يُظْلَمُونَ (47:10)

    And for each community, there is a messenger. Then when their messenger comes, their fate is decided with justice and they are not wronged. (10:47)

    It is evident from the Quran that the first instance of this worldly judgement took place with the people of Noah (sws). Noah (sws) had warned them that if they do not give up polytheism and worship God only, they will soon be confronted with a punishment which would wipe them out from the face of the earth. His people responded by saying that it is because of this very stance of his that they think that he has gone far astray. They said that Noah (sws) had insulted their forefathers and now he even has the audacity to warn them of divine punishment. They expressed that his followers were from the lower cadres of the society who were blindly following him. Noah’s rejoinder was that it was their misfortune if they were considering him to have gone astray; he continued that he had come to them as a messenger of God and whatever he is informing them of, he is informing them on the authority of God without any slightest of alteration; it is the message of God that he is delivering to them and he is doing so as a great well-wisher of them. If he is proclaiming to them this message in spite of their stubbornness, indifference, derision and animosity then it is only because he is fearful and sad that the Almighty might seize them for their misconduct.

    The Quran says that Noah (sws) continued to urge and exhort them to the truth for almost nine hundred and fifty years; however, in spite of this prolonged effort when his people rejected him and were not ready to reform themselves, the Almighty directed him to make a boat. This was in fact an ultimatum to the people that as soon as the boat is built, the respite they have been given would end. Consequently, when the boat had been made and all the believers embarked on it, a tumultuous storm ensued. The earth was directed to expel all its water on the surface and the sky was directed to rain down all its water. The water rose and stopped at the appointed mark and all of his people were drowned in it. Even Noah’s son, Canaan, drowned because of his arrogance. The whole sight was serving a great warning to onlookers. Winds were blowing all around. Rain was thumping down. Waves as towering as the mountains were rising up. Noah’s boat was battling with these gigantic waves when suddenly Noah (sws) saw his son standing in front of him overwhelmed with awe and wonder. Paternal love stirred at this sight and he called out to him that there is still a chance to board the boat and leave the rejecters. However, even this dreadful scenario was not enough for him to give up his stubbornness. He replied that he would seek refuge in some mountain. Noah (sws) warned that this is not mere water that he is facing: it is the wrath of God and no one except God can save him from it. While this conversation was going on, a huge wave suddenly came and swept his son away. All other rejecters of Noah (sws) also met the same fate. This was the equitable judgement of the court of God. Only the believers were shielded from its punishment. [4]

    This was the first miniature day of judgement that took place to leave people with no excuse to deny the Hereafter. After this, every nation of the world encountered these miniature days of judgement. The accounts of ‘Ad, the Thamud, the people of Shuayb (sws), the people of Jonah (sws) besides some other nations which have been mentioned in the Qur’an depict this very judgement. The Qur’an says:

    أَلَمْ يَأْتِكُمْ نَبَأُ الَّذِينَ مِن قَبْلِكُمْ قَوْمِ نُوحٍ وَعَادٍ وَثَمُودَ وَالَّذِينَ مِن بَعْدِهِمْ لاَ يَعْلَمُهُمْ إِلاَّ اللّهُ جَاءتْهُمْ رُسُلُهُم بِالْبَيِّنَاتِ فَرَدُّواْ أَيْدِيَهُمْ فِي أَفْوَاهِهِمْ وَقَالُواْ إِنَّا كَفَرْنَا بِمَا أُرْسِلْتُم بِهِ وَإِنَّا لَفِي شَكٍّ مِّمَّا تَدْعُونَنَا إِلَيْهِ مُرِيبٍ قَالَتْ رُسُلُهُمْ أَفِي اللّهِ شَكٌّ فَاطِرِ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالأَرْضِ يَدْعُوكُمْ لِيَغْفِرَ لَكُم مِّن ذُنُوبِكُمْ وَيُؤَخِّرَكُمْ إِلَى أَجَلٍ مُّسَـمًّى قَالُواْ إِنْ أَنتُمْ إِلاَّ بَشَرٌ مِّثْلُنَا تُرِيدُونَ أَن تَصُدُّونَا عَمَّا كَانَ يَعْبُدُ آبَآؤُنَا فَأْتُونَا بِسُلْطَانٍ مُّبِينٍ قَالَتْ لَهُمْ رُسُلُهُمْ إِن نَّحْنُ إِلاّ بَشَرٌ مِّثْلُكُمْ وَلَـكِنَّ اللّهَ يَمُنُّ عَلَى مَن يَشَاء مِنْ عِبَادِهِ وَمَا كَانَ لَنَا أَن نَّأْتِيَكُم بِسُلْطَانٍ إِلاَّ بِإِذْنِ اللّهِ…وَقَالَ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُواْ لِرُسُلِهِمْ لَنُخْرِجَنَّـكُم مِّنْ أَرْضِنَآ أَوْ لَتَعُودُنَّ فِي مِلَّتِنَا فَأَوْحَى إِلَيْهِمْ رَبُّهُمْ لَنُهْلِكَنَّ الظَّالِمِينَ وَلَنُسْكِنَنَّـكُمُ الأَرْضَ مِن بَعْدِهِمْ ذَلِكَ لِمَنْ خَافَ مَقَامِي وَخَافَ وَعِيدِ (14: 9-14)

    Have you not heard what befell those that have gone before you? The accounts of the people of Noah, ‘Ad, and Thamud, and those who came after them whom only God knows? Their messengers came to them with clear signs, but they placed their hands on their mouths [–the mouths of messengers–] and said: “We will not accept the message with which you have been sent and have baffling doubts about that which you call us to.” Their messengers said: “Do you have doubts about God, the Creator of the heavens and the earth? He calls you to Him that He may forgive you your sins and give you respite till an appointed time.” They said: “You are but a human being like ourselves. You wish to stop us from worshipping the deities our fathers worshipped then bring us a clear miracle.” Their messengers replied: “We are indeed but mortals like yourselves. Yet God bestows His grace on such of His servants as He chooses and we do not have any authority of our own to present a miracle except by God’s permission …” At last these rejecters told their messengers: “Return to our ways or we will banish you from our land.” Then their Lord revealed to them, saying: “We shall destroy these wrongdoers and then give you this land to dwell after them. [These are glad tidings for] those who are fearful of standing before me [one day] and those who fear My threat.” (14:9-14)

    The account of Moses (sws) related in the Quran is also a depiction of this worldly judgement. When he presented the message of God before the Pharaoh and his supporters and they rejected this message, he demanded from them to let him and his people migrate from the land. The Pharaoh, however, did not accept this demand just as he did not accept his message. At this, the Almighty sent portent signs one after the other to admonish him after which he, with great hesitation, allowed them to go for a few days. However, when Moses (sws) set off with his people, he changed his opinion and embarked upon their pursuit with his armies. He thought that he would be able to compel them to return. However, the time had come for the decree of God to arrive. Hence, the judgement was delivered and was delivered with such majesty that it seemed as if the Almighty took them in His custody and made them cross the river while this potent ruler of his times and his armies were drowned in it. [5] Then within this great sign of God appeared another great sign: the corpse of the Pharaoh was not accepted by the river and was thrown out so that this could become a means of admonition and a lesson for tyrannical rulers of all times:

    وَجَاوَزْنَا بِبَنِي إِسْرَائِيلَ الْبَحْرَ فَأَتْبَعَهُمْ فِرْعَوْنُ وَجُنُودُهُ بَغْيًا وَعَدْوًا حَتَّى إِذَا أَدْرَكَهُ الْغَرَقُ قَالَ آمَنتُ أَنَّهُ لا إِلِـهَ إِلاَّ الَّذِي آمَنَتْ بِهِ بَنُو إِسْرَائِيلَ وَأَنَاْ مِنَ الْمُسْلِمِينَ آلآنَ وَقَدْ عَصَيْتَ قَبْلُ وَكُنتَ مِنَ الْمُفْسِدِينَ فَالْيَوْمَ نُنَجِّيكَ بِبَدَنِكَ لِتَكُونَ لِمَنْ خَلْفَكَ آيَةً وَإِنَّ كَثِيرًا مِّنَ النَّاسِ عَنْ آيَاتِنَا لَغَافِلُونَ (10: 90-92)

    And We led the Israelites across the sea, and the Pharaoh and his legions pursued them with wickedness and spite. Until when the Pharaoh started to drown, he cried: “I profess faith in the God in whom the Israelites have professed faith and I also am among His obedient people.” It is now that you have professed belief and before this you were a rebel and a mischief doer. We shall now save your body only so that you may become an exemplary sign for all posterity and in reality many remain indifferent to Our signs. (10:90-92)

    A further step was taken in this regard by the Almighty that after Abraham (sws), He made his progeny a symbol of this worldly judgement. It was thus declared that if the progeny of Abraham (sws) stand by the truth and present with full certainty and with full clarity the truth the way it is before other people of the world, then they will be made dominant over these people in case they do not accept the truth, and if the progeny of Abraham (sws) deviates from the truth they shall suffer the humiliation of subservience through these very people of the world. The mountain of Olive and the village of Fig located on it and the mount Tur at Sina and the city of Makkah are places where this worldly judgement took place for various nations and peoples. It is the mountain of Olives on which the punishment of the rejecters of Jesus (sws) was declared after his departure. The Almighty (Quran, 3:55) declared that those who have professed faith in Jesus (sws) will always remain dominant on the Israelites, and at various periods of history there will be people who will dominate them and give them humiliating punishments (Quran, 7:167). Fig is a village situated on this mountain. It is mentioned in the Gospel of Luke (19:29) that when Jesus (sws) came to Jerusalem, he stayed at this place before entering the city. It is known that it was on the mount of Sinai that the Israelites were constituted as an ummah. Makkah was the place where the Ishmaelites began their life as a collectivity and it was here that they were given the custodianship of the Baytullah, the first centre of worshipping God made on this earth. The Qur’an has presented them as witnesses to this Judgement with the declaration that what is it that can negate the Day of Judgement after witnessing this worldly Judgement of the progeny of Abraham (sws):

    وَالتِّينِ وَالزَّيْتُونِ وَطُورِ سِينِينَ وَهَذَا الْبَلَدِ الْأَمِينِ لَقَدْ خَلَقْنَا الْإِنسَانَ فِي أَحْسَنِ تَقْوِيمٍ ثُمَّ رَدَدْنَاهُ أَسْفَلَ سَافِلِينَ إِلَّا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ فَلَهُمْ أَجْرٌ غَيْرُ مَمْنُونٍ فَمَا يُكَذِّبُكَ بَعْدُ بِالدِّينِ أَلَيْسَ اللَّهُ بِأَحْكَمِ الْحَاكِمِينَ (95 :1 – 8)

    The fig and olive bear witness and [so does] the mount of Sinai and this secure city of [yours] that We have created man [at these places] in the best of moulds. Then We reverted him to the lowest [position] when he himself wanted to become low. Save those who accepted faith and did righteous deeds. For them shall be a reward unending. Now [O Prophet!] What is it that denies you about the Day of Judgement? [Ask them:] is not Allah the best of Judges? (95:1-8)

    The last time this miniature Day of Judgement took place was in seventh century AD. This amazing event of human history occupies extra-ordinary significance because it took place in the light of known history. Thus the minutest of details about it are preserved and all its phases are before us and anyone can witness them by turning the pages of history.

    The prophet who was selected for this was Muhammad (sws). As regards character and morality, he is unrivalled in the annals of mankind being the best of men epitomizing an ideal human being. He was designated as a Prophet at the age of forty. Prior to this, his life was so morally outstanding that he was called sadiq (the truthful) and amin (the trustworthy) by his people. Each and every person of his nation was ready to bear witness that he was unflinching and incontestable in his honesty and trustworthiness and that he could never lie. Even after being designated as a prophet, his people at all instances always bore witness to these aspects of his character even though they had become his dreadful enemies.

    When for the first time he received divine revelation and he expressed his worry to his wife on this experience, she while comforting him said: “By God! Allah will never humiliate you because you are always kind to your kin and are always truthful and you bear the burden of others; you earn for the poor and are generous to guests and help those in distress.”[6]

    He never sought revenge from anyone for his own self. So much so, even after subduing his greatest foes, he told them: “You are free, and I will not take any action against you.” [7]

    His life was an unrivalled example of selflessness. The Quraysh offered him wealth, leadership and even their kingdom but he totally declined them and said: “If people place the sun on one hand of mine and the moon on the other, I will not give up my stance.” [8]

    As the head of the Islamic state in Madinah, he led the simplest of lives. In spite of this great change in his circumstances, he did not change his standard of living by the slightest.

    In short, he was an outstanding person in every sphere and period of his life. Not a single example can be quoted in known history, in which a person in his practical life so perfectly adhered to the ideologies and objectives he set for himself. Wahid al-Din Khan, a celebrated scholar of contemporary times, says: “So lofty was he as a human being that if he had not been born, historians would have written that a person who has such a personality as described above can only exist in fantasy and not in reality.” [9]

    With this character and disposition, he called upon his people to profess true faith in God and in the Hereafter; however, they refused to accept it. He warned them that he is not merely a Prophet (nabi), he is a Messenger (rasul) also and has been sent by God to set up a miniature Day of Judgement in this world for his people if they deny him even after being convinced of his veracity. This miniature judgement will be in line with and of the same sort which was delivered to the people of Noah (sws), Lot (sws), Shu‘ayb (sws), Salih (sws) and Hud (sws) by their respective messengers.

    This was an extra-ordinary declaration. It meant that those who reject him would be punished by God and those who profess faith in him would necessarily prevail in the land of Arabia. When this declaration was sounded, except for a few close companions, he had no other supporters. Later also, he faced perilous times during the course of his struggle. His companions had to migrate to Abyssinia to seek refuge from the hostility of their enemies; they had to vacate Makkah forever and when they reached Madinah, the whole of Arabia united to eliminate him and his message. Means such as power, money, propaganda and internal conspiracies were adopted to sabotage his mission. Every instant it seemed that enemies would be able to overpower and seize him. In these circumstances, it was very improbable that he would be able to prevail over his enemies; however, the Quran in every situation assured him that he is the Messenger of God and, in spite of all this antagonism, God will have him prevail over his enemies: [10]

    بُرِيدُونَ لِيُطْفِؤُوا نُورَ اللَّهِ بِأَفْوَاهِهِمْ وَاللَّهُ مُتِمُّ نُورِهِ وَلَوْ كَرِهَ الْكَافِرُونَ هُوَ الَّذِي أَرْسَلَ رَسُولَهُ بِالْهُدَى وَدِينِ الْحَقِّ لِيُظْهِرَهُ عَلَى الدِّينِ كُلِّهِ وَلَوْ كَرِهَ الْمُشْرِكُونَ (61: 8-9)

    They seek to extinguish the light of God with their mouths and God has decided that He will perfect His light, much as the disbelievers may dislike it. It is He who has sent forth His messenger with guidance which is the religion of truth so that he may have it prevail over all religions [of Arabia], much as the idolaters may dislike it. (61:8-9)

    إِنَّ الَّذِينَ يُحَادُّونَ اللَّهَ وَرَسُولَهُ أُوْلَئِكَ فِي الأَذَلِّينَ كَتَبَ اللَّهُ لَأَغْلِبَنَّ أَنَا وَرُسُلِي إِنَّ اللَّهَ قَوِيٌّ عَزِيزٌ (58: 20-21)

    Indeed those who are opposing Allah and His Messenger are bound to be humiliated. The Almighty has ordained: “I and My messengers shall always prevail.” Indeed Allah is Mighty and Powerful. (58:20-21)

    The Baytullah was a sign of leadership for the people to whom the Prophet (sws) was sent. They were its custodians. No one could even imagine that one day he would remove them from its custodianship and the leadership of the Quraysh would one day be humbled before him. This was because of the extent of influence they commanded in Makkah and in its whereabouts. However, right at the instance they were planning to turn him out of Makkah, the Quran declared:

    إِنَّا أَعْطَيْنَاكَ الْكَوْثَرَ فَصَلِّ لِرَبِّكَ وَانْحَرْ إِنَّ شَانِئَكَ هُوَ الْأَبْتَرُ (108: 1-3)

    [O Prophet!] Upon you have We bestowed this abundance of good [this House of Ours]. So pray only for your Almighty and offer sacrifice only for Him. Indeed, it is this enemy of yours who is rootless: none of his followers will remain. (108:1-3)

    Then these concise words were explained and after naming Abu Lahab, the biggest foe of his call, the Quran asserted:

    تَبَّتْ يَدَا أَبِي لَهَبٍ وَتَبَّمَا أَغْنَى عَنْهُ مَالُهُ وَمَا كَسَبَسَيَصْلَى نَارًا ذَاتَ لَهَبٍوَامْرَأَتُهُ حَمَّالَةَ الْحَطَبِفِي جِيدِهَا حَبْلٌ مِنْ مَسَدٍ (111: 1-5)

    The hands of Abu Lahab have been broken and he himself has perished. Neither did his wealth benefit him nor the [good] he earned. Soon shall this man [of glowing countenance] be put in a glowing Fire and [with him] his wife also such that [in Hell] she will be carrying firewood on her back [for her own self]; [like a slave woman], there will be a twisted rope round her neck. (111:1-5)

    What would happen after this? The Quran mentioned each and every phase with great clarity: The help of God would come and Makkah would be conquered and the Prophet (sws) would see from his very eyes his people entering the folds of Islam in multitudes:

    إِذَا جَاءَ نَصْرُ اللَّهِ وَالْفَتْحُ وَرَأَيْتَ النَّاسَ يَدْخُلُونَ فِي دِينِ اللَّهِ أَفْوَاجًا فَسَبِّحْ بِحَمْدِ رَبِّكَ وَاسْتَغْفِرْهُ إِنَّهُ كَانَ تَوَّابًا(110: 1-3)

    When comes the help of God and that victory [which We have promised you O Prophet!] and you see men embrace the religion of God in multitudes, extol His glory while being thankful to Him and seek His forgiveness. For, indeed, He is ever disposed to mercy. (110:1-3)

    At another instance, the words are even more clear:

    وَعَدَ اللَّهُ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا مِنكُمْ وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ لَيَسْتَخْلِفَنَّهُم فِي الْأَرْضِ كَمَا اسْتَخْلَفَ الَّذِينَ مِن قَبْلِهِمْ وَلَيُمَكِّنَنَّ لَهُمْ دِينَهُمُ الَّذِي ارْتَضَى لَهُمْ وَلَيُبَدِّلَنَّهُم مِّن بَعْدِ خَوْفِهِمْ أَمْنًا يَعْبُدُونَنِي لَا يُشْرِكُونَ بِي شَيْئًا وَمَن كَفَرَ بَعْدَ ذَلِكَ فَأُوْلَئِكَ هُمُ الْفَاسِقُونَ (55:24)

    God has promised those of you who professed belief and did good deeds that He would grant them political authority in the land the way He granted political authority to those who were before them and He would strongly establish [here] their religion He chose for them, and replace their fear by peace. They will worship Me and serve none besides Me, and he who rejects even after this, will indeed be among the disobedient. (24:55)

    These were not the words of a human being which have all the chances of not being materialized. They were the words of God which were spoken by His Messenger. Thus they materialized and became part of history – in fact, created history which has no parallel in the annals of this world. Consequently, the help of God arrived, the rule of the Prophet (sws) was established in Madinah, the battle of Badr ensued and all hostile and antagonistic enemies of the Prophet (sws) were killed in it. [11] Abu Lahab did not take part in the battle in an effort to save himself from torment. However, just seven days after the battle of Badr, this prediction of the Quran was fulfilled word for word and this leader of the Banu Hashim was killed by plague. And such was the condition of his dead body that no one came near it till three days after his death. Ultimately, his body got decomposed and a stinking smell started to come out from it. Eventually, his corpse was placed near a wall and covered with stones. [12] Makkah was conquered, the custodianship of the Baytullah was transferred to the Muslims, the rituals of the prayer and animal sacrifice were specifically offered for the Almighty only after the Baytullah was cleansed of the idols, most Arabs became Muslims and every one saw with his very eyes people entering the folds of Islam in multitudes as predicted by the Quran. Consequently, Islam found a hold in the society, the shariah of God was enforced and thenceforth no other religion held dominance in Arabia. After this, people who still insisted on denial were vehemently told in 9th AH at the occasion of the grand hajj that once the sacred months pass, they shall have to face punishment and shall be executed where found. [13] After the death of the Prophet (sws), his successors conquered all the countries to whose heads the Prophet (sws) had written letters calling them to Islam. In these letters, he had told them that if they wanted peace they should accept Islam because after the truth has been conclusively communicated to them by the Messenger of God, they will have to live in subjugation and that their own independent states could no longer persist. Among these countries were Rome and Persia also about whose mutual conflict the Quran, at one instance, had predicted that though the Romans have been subdued by the Persians, soon they will subdue the Persians and this amazing prediction of the Quran was fulfilled word for word as were the other predictions it made. [14]

    (Javed Ahmed Ghamidi)

    (Translated by Dr. Shehzad Saleem)

    ____________________________________

    [1]. Amin Ahsan Islahi, Tadabbur-i Quran, vol. 9, 80.

    [2]. Ibid., vol. 5, 132.

    [3]. Ibid., vol. 7, 538.

    [4]. For details, see the following Quranic verses: 7:59-64; 10:7-73; 11:25-49; 23:23-31; 26:105-120; 29:14-15; 37:75-82; 54:9-16.

    [5].For details, see the following verses of the Quran: 7:103-136; 10:75-89; 17:101-103; 20:40-79; 23:45-48; 26:10-68; 28:36-40; 37: 114-119; 43:46-56; 51: 38-40; 79: 15-26.

    [6].Al-Bukhari, Al-Jami‘ al-sahih, 886-887, (no. 4953); Muslim, Al-Jami‘ al-sahih, 80-81, (no. 403).

    [7]. ‘Abd al-Malik ibn Hisham ibn Ayyub,Al-Sirah al-nabawiyyah, 2nd ed., vol. 4 (Beirut: Dar al-khayr, 1995), 43.

    [8].Muhammad ibn Ishaq al-Yasar, Al-Sirah al-nabawiyyah, 1st ed., vol. 1 (Beirut: Dar al-kutub al-‘ilmiyyah, 2004), 196; Ibn Kathir, Al-Sirah al-nabawiyyah, vol. 1, 474.

    [9].Wahid al-Din Khan, Madhhab awr Jadid Challenge (Lahore: Al-Maktabah al-ashrafiyyah, n.d.), 143.

    [10].See also: 6:4-5, 66-67, 158; 10:13, 102-103; 11:8; 13:40-41; 17:77, 18:57-58; 27:71-72; 37:171-173; 40:51, 77-78; 43:41-42; 46:35; 48:22-25, 28; 54:43-45; 92:21; 93:5; 94:5-6.

    [11]. Ibn Hisham, Al-Sirah al-nabawiyyah, vol. 2, 265-272.

    [12]. Ibn Kathir, Al-Sirah al-nabawiyyah, vol. 2, 479.

    [13]. The Quran, 9:5.

    [14]. The Quran, 30:1-6.

    Umer replied 2 years, 3 months ago 1 Member · 7 Replies
  • 7 Replies
  • Belief In The Hereafter: (1) Testimonies (Arguments)

  • Umer

    Moderator August 11, 2020 at 8:27 pm

    Lectures by Ghamidi Sahab on Belief in the Hereafter: (1) Testimonies (Arguments)

    (Part-1) – from 21:07 to 40:45

    https://youtu.be/iNV91nRK-dw?t=1267

  • Umer

    Moderator August 11, 2020 at 8:27 pm

    (Part-2) – from 00:00 to 41:05

  • Umer

    Moderator August 11, 2020 at 8:28 pm

    (Part-3) – from 00:00 to 41:18

  • Umer

    Moderator August 11, 2020 at 8:28 pm

    (Part-4) – from 00:00 to 42:47

  • Umer

    Moderator August 17, 2020 at 1:45 pm

    (Part-5) – from 00:00 to 41:27

  • Umer

    Moderator August 24, 2020 at 9:13 am

    (Part-6) – from 00:00 to 40:32

  • Umer

    Moderator August 31, 2020 at 4:59 pm

    Parent Thread:

    Discussion 22463

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