The Day Of Judgment

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CHAPTERS OF THE BOOK

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5 / total: 7

After the Universe Dies

On the Day of Judgment, everyone will see reality clearly. The unbelievers will be face to face with the reality of the Hereafter in which they never believed, refrained from pondering, and rejected. They will see the consequences of their error and will desperately seek a way out; however, they will not find one. They will have met a disastrous end and will be full of remorse. The Qur'an relates their psychology in great detail.

Confronted by the Day of Judgment, whether they like it or not, they will witness the unique events after the trumpet is sounded: the devastation of Earth and the heavens, and the destruction of the universe and all of its contents. After this is accomplished, Allah will recreate the heavens, the world, and humanity anew. Allah, Who created the heavens, Earth, and all the worlds, certainly has the power to create the likes of them, for:

Do they not see that Allah, Who created the heavens and Earth, has the power to create the like of them, and has appointed fixed terms for them of which there is no doubt? But the wrongdoers still spurn anything but unbelief. (Surat al-Isra', 99)

Do they not see that Allah—Who created the heavens and Earth and was not wearied by creating them—has the power to bring the dead to life? Yes indeed! He has power over all things. (Surat al-Ahqaf, 33)

The events of the Day of Judgment will bring new heavens and a new world, for such is His will. People will be brought to His presence to account for all that they have done, for:

On the Day Earth is changed to other than Earth, and the heavens likewise, and they parade before Allah, the One, the All-Conquering. (Surah Ibrahim, 48)

This Day is termed as "Day of Recompense," "Doomsday," or "Last Day" in the Qur'an. The newly created Earth and heavens will be eternal, and humanity will be resurrected. Believers and unbelievers will be separated and sent to their respective places in the eternal life. No one, including the unbelievers, will be a stranger to this day.

The believers, who prepared for their life in the Hereafter, will find this Day's events exactly as the Qur'an foretold them, and will have the comfort of receiving what Allah promised them. On the other hand, the unbelievers will experience inexplicable fear, remorse, and apprehension, for they spent their lives mindlessly opposing the morality Allah commands. But at this moment they will be painfully aware of their mistake. They will be face to face with the truth that they once pondered in terms of "what if it is true" in uncertainty and apprehension. They will begin the first few moments of their eternal condemnation, which cannot be prevented or deflected, and are doomed to experience this condition forever, for:

How can you reject Allah, when you were dead and then He gave you life, then He will make you die and then give you life again, then you will be returned to Him? (Surat al-Baqara, 28)

The Second Trumpet Blast and The Day of Resurrection

Those who have been given knowledge and faith will say: "You tarried in accordance with Allah's Decree until the Day of Resurrection. And this is the Day of Resurrection, but you did not know it." On that Day the excuses of those who did wrong will not help them, nor will they be able to appease Allah. (Surat ar-Rum, 56-57)

Allah sent His Messengers to all people throughout history to inform them of His existence and that of the Day of Judgment, and to invite them to belief. But as the Qur'an reveals, except for a small minority, most people chose not to believe, resisted Allah and His Messengers, and denied the resurrection, as the following verses reveal:

They swear by Allah with their most earnest oaths that He will not raise up those who die, when, on the contrary, it is a binding promise on Him; but most people do not know it. So that He can make clear to them the things they differed about, and so that those who did not believe will know that they were liars. (Surat an-Nahl, 38-39)

[The ruling circle of Noah's people said:] "If you were to obey a human being like yourselves, you would, in that case, definitely be the losers. Does he promise you that when you have died and become dust and bones that you will be brought forth again? What you have been promised is sheer nonsense! What is there but our life in this world? We die and we live, and we will not be raised again." (Surat al-Mu'minun, 34-37)

One of the main reasons behind their denial is that in their own minds they consider this life to be the only life there is. This false reasoning leads them to think that there is only nothingness after death, which encourages them to mindlessly reject the resurrection, the events revealed in the Qur'an, and the Day of Judgment, even though all living things and the world will die. And after their deaths, they will be created again just like they were created in the first place. Some of the examples Allah gives in the Qur'an to His servants while they are still in this world are as follows:

He makes likenesses of Us and forgets his own creation, saying: "Who will give life to bones when they are decayed?" Say: "He Who made them in the first place will bring them back to life. He has total knowledge of each created thing; He Who produces fire for you from green trees so that you use them to light your fires." Does He Who created the heavens and Earth not have the power to create the same again? Yes indeed! He is the Creator, the All-Knowing. His command when He desires a thing is just to say to it: "Be!" and it is. Glory be to Him Who has the Dominion of all things in His Hand. To Him you will be returned. (Surah Ya Sin, 78-83)

Among His Signs is that you see the earth laid bare, and then when We send down water on it, it quivers and swells. He Who gives it life is He Who gives life to the dead. Certainly He has power over all things. (Surah Fussilat, 39)

Even humanity's creation is in itself an important proof of the resurrection. Each person was made into a complete being from a single sperm cell and an egg. The fact that, over time, a single cell becomes a thinking, seeing, and reasoning being without any human interference is a clear indication of creation. Allah created humanity from nothing and so, of course, can easily reassemble each person's withered bones to re-create him or her. People who disregard this creation are ignoring their own existence and reason, and reject their resurrection with a devilish boldness. This is an act of atrocious impudence, for such people are taking a stance against Allah and will be confronted by this reality in the Hereafter. Following the Day of Judgment, of which people will be made aware of by the trumpet's first sounding, the second sounding will inform them that the resurrection has arrived. Emerging from their graves, they will stand waiting at the beginning of their everlasting lives, as Allah reveals:

The Trumpet will be blown, and those in the heavens and those in the earth will all lose consciousness, except those Allah wills. Then it will be blown a second time, and at once they will be standing upright, looking on. (Surat az-Zumar, 68)

The Day of Judgment's Features

Allah will bring about the Day of Judgment with the same ease as He created Earth, the heavens, and humanity. Such an event is affirmed with such words as "beyond doubt" and "certain." These terms, which express an absolute certainty, increase the believers' awe of Allah and their efforts on Earth, and answer the unbelievers' doubts and rejection of that Day most clearly.

Just as in the past, people who reject the morality of the religion, who leave the true religion and live by a false religion merged with superstition constitute the majority of people in many societies of our day. However, there is no rationale for people who can think and reason normally to disregard the possibility of the Day of Judgment. Scientific data also suggests that Earth's end is nigh. Some people continue to mindlessly disregard this fact because they do not know and appreciate Allah as required, and so deviate from the true guidance of the Qur'an and the Sunnah and do not contemplate how they will be held accountable for their deeds on that Day. The believers, who act in awe of Allah, are aware of the approaching end, whereas those who follow the guidance of their selfish selves disregard this great truth. Allah reveals this reality, as follows:

Say: "Allah gives you life, then causes you to die, and then will gather you together for the Day of Resurrection, about which there is no doubt. But most people do not know it." (Surat al-Jathiyya, 26)

Those who disregard the truth, despite being repeatedly invited to live by the morality of the religion, can only fully comprehend the shocking end awaiting them on the Day of Judgment. Only when they are confronted by all that they denied will they clearly see the emptiness of their efforts:

[On the Day of Threat, they will be told:] "You were heedless of this, so We have stripped you of your covering and today your sight is sharp." (Surah Qaf, 22)

The reason why some people cannot understand this great Day is that they trust too much in the guidance of their lower selves and thoughts, are committed only to their own desires and interests, and turn away from the truth, thereby blinding their consciences, which could lift the veils of their ignorance. Allah reveals that people who seek the world follow their selfish egos and disregard their consciences. As a result, they have no understanding. This is the meaning behind the Qur'anic phrase that such people will have their hearts sealed, which makes it impossible for them to see and distinguish the truth. But on the Day of Judgment, they will witness Allah's existence and greatness, as well as the truth of His promise.

If a person believed in the Day of Judgment and its events even for a moment, or considered the possibility of its truth only for a second, he or she would feel an indescribable fear. Rejecting the possibility of the Hereafter's existence from the outset or never thinking about it causes some people to be misled and to think that they will enter a state of nothingness after death. As they do not reflect on the fear of becoming nothingness, they find it easier to believe this than to believe in the Day of Judgment and the Hereafter. Such is satan's strategy, for he seeks to prevent people from contemplating such things and urges them to waste their worldly lives with desires for unattainable superiority and cravings for increased wealth. This is one of the main reasons why people ignore the Hereafter. However, its reality will evoke remorse and hair-raising fear, for they will be unable to escape this hard Day, since:

Necks outstretched, eyes transfixed, rushing headlong to the Summoner. The unbelievers will say: "This is a pitiless day!" (Surat al-Qamar, 8)

The Resurrection of The Dead

The Trumpet will be blown, and those in the heavens and those in the earth will all lose consciousness, except those Allah wills. Then it will be blown a second time, and at once they will be standing upright, looking on. (Surat az-Zumar, 68)

As this verse states, when the trumpet is sounded for a second time, the graves will be emptied out. Since no one or force can withstand or delay our Lord's command, all people in the ground will be resurrected, despite their denial that such a thing would ever happen. In the Qur'an Allah says:

Among His Signs is that heaven and Earth hold firm by His command. Then, when He calls you forth from the earth, you will emerge at once. (Surat ar-Rum, 25)

They will say, "Are we to be restored to how we were when we have become perished, worm-eaten bones?" They say: "That will clearly be a losing restoration!" There will be but one Great Blast, and at once they will be on the surface, wide awake! (Surat an-Nazi'at, 10-14)

People act as if this world will exist forever. This is one of the greatest mistakes of their lives, for it causes them to think that the world's perfect order, created by Allah, is self-sufficient and eternal. But after they die, they will see that death does not finish everything; rather, it is the beginning of their eternal lives. Having believed that they would enter a realm of nothingness, they are suddenly gripped by terror when they hear the trumpet's second sounding. The scrolls of their deeds are not yet unfolded, nor have they had a taste of what is in store for them. Nevertheless, they say "Woe to us!" and rise from their graves. In reality, they knew that this day would come. In the Qur'an Allah describes their fear on that Day, as follows:

They will say: "Woe to us! Who has raised us from our resting place? This is what the All-Merciful promised us. The Messengers were telling the truth." (Surah Ya Sin, 52)

Now it is too late, for their lives on Earth yielded neither true pleasure nor true comfort, and everything they had done until then only prepared for them this hardest of all days.

They Will Turn To A Caller

On that day they will follow the Summoner, who has no crookedness in him at all. Voices will be humbled before the All-Merciful, and nothing but a whisper will be heard. (Surah Ta Ha, 108)

When people emerge from their graves and begin to run toward a call, the like of which they have never heard before, they will not stop running until they reach the place from where they were called. The believers will arrive contented and peaceful, whereas the unbelievers will arrive as if they had sensed what is awaiting them, saying over and over again "This is a pitiless day!" (Surat al-Qamar, 8). It is now time to assemble, and nothing can prevent it. Everyone who has ever lived will be gathered and begin to move rapidly, in surprise and submission to Allah, toward their punishment. Escape and returning to Earth are impossible, and all remorse is useless. Fear and terror will grip their whole being, for:

The Day they will emerge swiftly from their graves, as if rushing to rally to the flag, eyes downcast, darkened by debasement, that will be the Day which they were promised. (Surat Ma'arij, 43-44)

[They say:] "When we are dead and turned to dust and bones, will we then be raised up again alive? And our earlier ancestors as well?" Say: "Yes, and you will be in a despicable state." (Surat as-Saffat, 16-18)

Unbelievers, who did not observe Allah's boundaries, were arrogant and disobedient on Earth, will now become very obedient and submissive. They will follow the call unconditionally, for they will not be able to act of their own volition. They will have surrendered to Allah and will bow to His will, whether they like it or not, because the ego-driven life that they led in the world is now over. They will clearly understand their incapacity in front of Allah, the severity of His punishment, and the truth thereof:

Turn away from them then. On the Day the Summoner summons them to something unspeakably terrible. (Surat al-Qamar, 6)

All people finally will realize that they have no option but to obey Allah and bow to His will. They will be unable to do otherwise, even if they wanted to.

This promised Day is an exceedingly tragic one for the unbelievers. The terror of the Day of Meeting and the frightening experience of rising from the graves is undisputable. People will see their predecessors facing the same reality as they are and that Allah has kept His promise.

They Will Be Like Swarming Locusts

Those who do not believe in the Hereafter have an evil likeness. Allah's is the Highest Likeness. He is the Almighty, the All-Wise. (Surat an-Nahl, 60)

As Allah says in the verse, every example given by Allah depicts the situation in the most concise manner and the best possible way. For this reason, Allah states that each of its verses is "consummate wisdom" (Surat al-Qamar, 5). Given this fact, every description given in the Qur'an enables us to visualize the Day of Judgment and the people's situation. No doubt, Allah's promise is true and all examples and depicted scenes will become true. For instance, the Qur'an likens people rising from their graves to swarming locusts, as follows:

They will emerge from their graves with downcast eyes, like swarming locusts. (Surat al-Qamar, 7)

This analogy Allah reveals in the Qur'an enables us to visualize that moment in the best way. The swarming of locusts is unique. Migrating locusts travel in huge swarms and cause damage on a massive scale. Swarms can fly between 1,500 and 1,800 meters (4,900-5,900 feet) above the ground and they descend like a cloud formation. Locust swarms can migrate great distances very rapidly and remain airborne for long periods. Some swarms cover an area as large as 75 x 15 miles (120 x 25 kms), and contain about as much as 150 billion locusts.33 Numbering in the billions, they literally appear out the blue, cover huge areas, and strip away all vegetation wherever they go.

As Allah revealed in the Qur'an billions of people will suddenly appear on the ground after hearing the trumpet and, like locusts, will begin to move together toward the caller. The Qur'an mentions that:

Among His Signs is that heaven and Earth hold firm by His command. Then, when He calls you forth from the earth, you will emerge at once. (Surat ar-Rum, 25)

It is a mind-blowing scene, for all people who have ever lived will emerge from their graves, assemble all at once, and await the judgment foreseen for them.

Holding Their Heads Up, They Will Run To One Point

On that Day, the unbelievers' heads will be up in the air, their eyes fixed on one point only, and they will run as if hypnotized. They are only moving in the way prescribed by Allah and facing the call's direction. According to Allah's will, everybody except the believers, who are safe, will be gripped by a great fear:

Each of them will come to Him on the Day of Resurrection all alone. As for those who believe and do right actions, the All-Merciful will bestow His love on them. (Surah Maryam, 95-96)

The unbelievers will run in fear and astonishment, unable to look at others or themselves. It does not even occur to them to do so. On the Day of Judgment, wealth, children, or worldly ambitions will lose their value. Everybody will be in a state of unconditional obedience, and the only thing of value is faith. Allah describes the unbelievers' state at that moment in the following way:

Do not consider Allah to be unaware of what the wrongdoers perpetrate. He is merely deferring them to a Day on which their sight will be transfixed, rushing headlong—heads back, eyes vacant, hearts hollow. (Surah Ibrahim, 42-43)

What is the matter with those who do not believe? They run about in front of you, with outstretched necks and staring eyes, on the right and on the left in scattered groups! Does each one of them aspire to be admitted into a Garden of Delight? (Surat al-Ma'arij, 36-38)

The unbelievers will not be able to attempt their own rescue or to even consider it. Their hearts will be void, and they will be aware of the end awaiting them. People's rising from their graves to be judged and their running will end with them congregating in the Lord's Presence, as follows:

They will be paraded before your Lord in ranks: "You have come to Us just as We created you at first. Yes indeed! Even though you claimed that We would not fix a time with you." (Surat al-Kahf, 48)

A great majority of people did not believe that this meeting would ever take place. But on that great Day, they will be captured and realize its truth and that they cannot escape it.

Gathering For The Judgment

Allah has created this moment of truth, as befits His power and glory, which the unbelievers disregarded and evaded all their lives, whereas the believers were preparing themselves for it. Jibril and all the angels will assemble in rows for the judgment, all people will be judged fairly, and those who speak will only be able to speak the truth:

On the Day when the Spirit and the angels stand in ranks, no one will speak, except for him who is authorized by the All-Merciful and says what is right. (Surat an-Naba', 38)

As Allah reveals, in the Hereafter Allah will show His Glory to His servants at the highest level. That Day eight angels will bear His Throne:

The angels will be gathered round its edge. On that Day, eight will bear the Throne of their Lord above their heads. On that Day you will be exposed—no concealed act you did will stay concealed. (Surat al-Haqqa, 17-18)

In the Qur'an Allah reveals that the believers' faces will be radiant and they will be gazing at their Lord, whereas the unbelievers will not even raise their heads because of their shame. Their behavior at that moment will be as follows:

The Day of Decision is a fixed appointment: the Day the Trumpet is blown, and you come in droves. (Surat an-Naba', 17-18)

The Qur'an reveals that the believers' faces will be radiant and they will be gazing at their Lord, whereas the unbelievers will not even raise their heads because of their shame. Their behavior at that moment will be as follows:

Faces will be humbled to the Living, the All-Sustaining, and anyone weighed down with wrongdoing will have failed. (Surah Ta Ha, 111)

When we add the billions of people who are living now to all of the people who lived in the past and will live in the future, we can get an impression of the astonishing scenes of the huge mass of people rising from their graves. People will gather, see, and comprehend clearly one another, what they have done, and what is going on, because their sight will be sharp:

[On the Day of Threat, they will be told:] "You were heedless of this, so We have stripped you of your covering and today your sight is sharp." (Surah Qaf, 22)

All the people one has ever known will be there. Famous or ordinary, rich or poor, all of humanity will assemble in Allah's presence, without any sign of their worldly fame or their status. Only the believers will not feel remorse. Every person, even if they marked an era or wrote history, will be sorry and will experience the same fear due to the severity of their punishment in His presence. They may have been presidents, musicians, artists, or rich. But such "superiority" no longer matters, and money, office, and other marks of worldly distinction will lose their value. In other words, both the admired as well as the admirer will be in the same situation, for:

On the Day We gather them all together... (Surah Yunus, 28)

Say: "Allah gives you life, then causes you to die, and then will gather you together for the Day of Resurrection, about which there is no doubt. But most people do not know it." (Surat al-Jathiya, 26)

On that Day, worldly status and wealth will have no value, no one will follow in the footsteps of another, and no one will try to impress anyone else. Aristocrats, the rich, the rulers, and the bosses will be held accountable for their sins in the same way as all the ordinary people, and the only superiority will be one's closeness to Allah. All people will understand clearly that nothing but trying to win Allah's approval and good pleasure has any value, and they will know with certainty that Allah is the sole possessor of everything. And, Allah relates in the Qur'an, the unbelievers who encounter this reality will be unable to return to their former lives to make amends or to help one another:

Then when the Trumpet is blown, that Day there will be no family ties between them; nor will they ask about one another. (Surat al-Mu'minun, 101)

The Moment of Judgment

In the Qur'an Allah reveals the true purpose of human life in the following manner:

O Man! You are toiling laboriously toward your Lord, but you will meet Him! (Surat al-Inshiqaq, 6)

Such events like going to university, graduating, marrying, or having children are considered turning points of life by some people. People with worldly ambitions count the days, make plans, and prepare for the day when they will achieve their ambitions. They admit that their lives are geared toward these ends and that they live for such goals. It is perfectly natural for people to have such goals but it would be a grave mistake to ignore the real aim of their existence on earth and run after only these goals. Because in reality, humanity was created to serve Allah. Even if they do not acknowledge it, deep down they know it. However, people consider this life to be eternal and spend it trying either to forget or completely ignore the reason for their creation. Regardless of what they do while alive, their final destination is Allah's presence: the moment of justice on the Day of Judgment.

Every passing day brings us a little closer to that Day. Every hour, minute, and second is a new step toward resurrection and judgment. This progress, which cannot be reversed or stopped, is followed by everyone, for:

Certainly it is to Us they will return. Then their reckoning is Our concern. (Surat al-Ghashiya, 25-26)

When that time comes, everything will reach its conclusion and there will be no way to go back and make amends. All of those who disregarded the truth, shown to them by their conscience, will experience a previously unknown degree of astonishment and panic. All of those who rejected Allah's existence and unity will undergo an unequaled punishment, for His Messengers warned and informed them how to live and invited them to the true religion. Moreover, Allah gave them enough time and opportunity to reflect and reason upon the truth they were told, for:

... Did We not let you live long enough for anyone who was going to pay heed to pay heed?... (Surat al-Fatir, 37)

Now the time is up and the moment of truth has arrived. Allah, Who knows everything that each person has done during his or her life, is closer to each person than their jugular vein. And now everybody has become sure about Who created them, why He created them, what was required of them, and that they will be returned to Allah. They chose to fool themselves with a devilish boldness, even though they knew about it, and so will be punished accordingly. On that Day, everybody will be told what they did and what they postponed:

On the Day Allah resurrect all of them together, He will inform them of what they did. Allah has recorded it while they have forgotten it. Allah is a Witness of all things. (Surat al-Mujadala, 6)

That Day people will emerge segregated to see the results of their actions. Whoever does an atom's weight of good will see it. Whoever does an atom's weight of evil will see it. (Surat az-Zilzal, 6-8)

Allah calls all people to prepare for the moment of truth: "… Whatever good you do, Allah knows it. Take provision; but the best provision is doing your duty (taqwa)..." (Surat al-Baqara, 197). Those who listened to their consciences and followed Allah's call will not know fear or sorrow on that Day, whereas the unbelievers will experience a remorse for which they cannot atone. As Allah states in the Qur'an:

And that Day Hell is produced, that Day man will remember; but how will the remembrance help him? He will say: "Oh! If only I had prepared in advance for this life of mine!" That Day no one will punish as He punishes. (Surat al-Fajr, 23-25)

No One Will Be Wronged

And Earth will shine with the Pure Light of its Lord, the Book will be put in place, the Prophets and witnesses will be brought, it will be decided between them with the truth, and they will not be wronged. (Surat az-Zumar, 69)

The immensity of this Day will reflect Allah's greatness, infallible justice, and His attributes of al-Jabbar (The Compeller), al-Qahhar (The Subduer), and al-Muntaqim (The Avenger). As on Earth, His justice will govern the questioning of deeds and their final reward or punishment. Everyone will receive justice based upon the placement of "just scales":

We will set up the Just Balance on the Day of Resurrection, and no self will be wronged in any way. Even if it is no more than the weight of a grain of mustard-seed, We will produce it. We are sufficient as a Reckoner. (Surat al-Anbiya', 47)

Every deed will be put on these scales, which will decide one's eternal suffering or eternal salvation or happiness. People whose good deeds weigh heavier will go to Paradise, but those whose good deeds weigh less will receive a fearsome punishment: being cast into Hell. As Allah states in the Qur'an:

As for him whose balance is heavy, he will have a most pleasant life. But as for him whose balance is light, his motherland is Hawiya. And what will convey to you what that is? A raging Fire! (Surat al-Qari'a, 6-11)

The Driver and The Witness

Two angels will come with every person for their trial on the Day of Judgment, for:

[On that Day] every self will come together with a driver and a witness. (Surah Qaf, 21)

Every place will be bright with Allah's light on the Day of Reckoning. The witnesses and Messengers who will testify will be ready. Prophets who advised and reminded people of their duty to serve Allah and the other witnesses will be with those who will be questioned on that Day. These witnesses will do no wrong.

Nobody will be able to claim that they did not know that their duty was to serve Allah, for every member of humanity has been informed of this fact by Allah's Messengers. Nor will they be able to deny, in His presence, what they have done. All of their good as well as evil deeds will be exposed. Even if they deny the truth, the witnesses will be just and expose their lies. Every nation will be present with its own book and leader (imam) in this great order in our Lord's presence. On this Day, where all nations since the Prophet Adam(peace be upon him), will be gathered, Allah's great wisdom and infinite justice will be manifest in the way the trial is conducted, as follows:

You will see every nation on its knees, every nation summoned to its Book: "Today you will be repaid for what you did." (Surat al-Jathiya, 28)

Surprise Witnesses

On that Day, the witnesses to the evil committed by the guilty sinners will be present. Besides the believers, the angels who recorded all of one's deeds, and the other witnesses brought there by Allah, surprise witnesses also will testify against the unbelievers. These are astonishing signs of Allah's total rule, even when people thought that they were alone. Among those who will testify will be one's own senses of sight and hearing, as well as one's own skin. Each of these will speak, by His will, and state the truth. The fact that even their own senses and skin, which they considered their own, will betray them will only increase the unbelievers' psychological breakdown. Some of the verses in this regard are the following:

On the Day We crowd the enemies of Allah into the Fire and they are driven in close-packed ranks, when they reach it [the Fire], their hearing, sight, and skin will testify against them concerning what they did. They will ask their skins: "Why did you testify against us?" and they will reply: "Allah gave us speech, as He has given speech to everything. He created you in the first place, and you will be returned to Him. You did not think to shield yourselves from your hearing, sight, and skin testifying against you, and you thought that Allah would never know much of what you did. It is that thought you had about your Lord that has destroyed you, so now you find yourselves among the lost." If they are steadfast, the Fire will still be their residence! If they ask for favor, no favor will be given. (Surah Fussilat, 19-24)

People can find a plausible (as well as an implausible) explanation for whatever they do, and can even make themselves believe in it. The only thing wanted at such a moment is convincing oneself or the other party. In other words, they believe in what they want, devise a logic in support thereof, and provide explanations based on that. For this reason, maybe the evidence they use even to deny Allah's existence has become valid for them and caused them to put up a determined fight against the believers.

But none of these explanations or proofs will have any validity on the Day of Judgment. They will see just how invalid these arrogant explanations are, and will realize in the face of their own senses and skins' testimony that they can conceal nothing. The things they thought nobody had seen, the things done in utmost secrecy, will be revealed one by one and will be acknowledged by their own bodies.

They will Be Called To Account Alone

In addition, those who expected to receive their friends' help will find themselves giving account for their deeds "alone." This will cause the unbelievers to see the pointlessness of expecting anyone or anything other than Allah to help them. They will receive the due returns of such an error. In the Qur'an Allah reveals the reality of giving such an account alone, as follows:

Each of them will come to Him on the Day of Resurrection alone. (Surah Maryam, 95)

To be alone is one of the scariest thoughts for people, especially in times of hardship. It is painful to be lonely, even under the conditions of life on Earth. In the Hereafter, loneliness will not be the only problem. The worst will be the unbelievers' strong fear of the moment of justice, because they will be painfully aware of the evil they committed. Nobody in whom they can trust or from whom they can seek help and support will be nearby, and not even their most trusted and close family members will care about them. Everything will have turned upside down, and even their bodies will begin to testify against them. Such loneliness is hard to describe.

Hoping that their false deities and friends would help them was one mistake; another one was their belief that their secret sins and evil deeds would not be exposed on the Day of Judgment. In reality, Allah witnesses all that they did while alive, for:

On that Day you will be exposed—no concealed act you did will stay concealed. (Surat al-Haqqa, 18)

Every self will be repaid in full for what it did. He knows best what they are doing. (Surat az-Zumar, 70)

All of the unbelievers' sins will be fully exposed. People who lied throughout their lives even to their families and closest friends, committed fraud and took every conceivable risk to satisfy their self-interest, who denied Allah's Messengers and rejected their words, thinking that such things would never be exposed, will be called to account alone, for:

On the Day when the secrets are sought out and man will have no strength or helper. (Surat at-Tariq, 9-10)

No Friendship, Family, or Closeness

On that Day, people will not have the strength or the opportunity to deal with anyone but themselves. People will not even think about their families, which they so cherished and trusted. Due to their terror, they are totally preoccupied with themselves. The bonds between them and their ancestors, of whom they were so proud, for whom they prepared family trees and learned their history, will be severed, for:

Then when the Trumpet is blown, that Day there will be no family ties between them; they will not be able to question one another. (Surat al-Mu'minun, 101)

The strong forts in which they trusted and sought refuge, such as family wealth and their offices, all will be destroyed. Those who sought superiority and power from their ancestors' titles or inherited wealth, who thought that they would profit from a life removed from the morality of religion and even considered this a sign of superiority, will now realize their mistake. On this Day, only faith has value.

In societies divorced from the values of religion, the most important factor for friendship to develop and continue is self-interest. Self-interest seeks to invest in and guarantee one's future, obtain money, status, and connections. But on the Day of Judgment, no one will be in a state to seek pleasure, ambition, and lust, and so all friendships will be forgotten at once. In the Qur'an Allah says:

[On that Day] no good friend will ask about his friend. (Surat al-Ma'arij, 10)

The fear will be so great that everybody would forsake all they have if only they could escape the fearsome punishment. Moreover, the wealth that they did everything to acquire will have lost its appeal. They would give all of Earth's wealth, if it belonged to them, as a ransom, along with their own wealth. All of the property that they possessed and guarded so closely will have lost its meaning. They would spend all of their wealth in the cause of Allah without a second thought, but now it is too late.

Instead of using their wealth in the path of Allah, they used it during their short lives for temporary worldly gains and passions in a futile attempt to ensure that their names, deeds, and status would be remembered and preserved after they died. And so they disregarded this difficult day. In the Qur'an Allah reveals this dead-end situation, as follows:

If those who did wrong owned everything on Earth, and the same again with it, they would offer it as a ransom to save themselves from the evil of the punishment on the Day of Resurrection. What confronts them from Allah will be something with which they did not reckon. (Surat az-Zumar, 47)

He [Ibrahim] said: "You have adopted idols apart from Allah as tokens of mutual affection in this world. But then on the Day of Resurrection, you will reject one another and curse one another. The Fire will be your shelter. You will have no helpers." (Surat al-'Ankabut, 25)

Despite being party to many hypocrisies, no unbelievers will acknowledge that their friendships were false. For many, the friendships and love they experienced were "different from all others." In reality, they all made the same mistakes and did not experience true loyalty, not even on Earth. Furthermore, the offers that they will make on that Day to prevent their deserved punishment reveals their attitude toward friendship. Their families and friends, about whom they felt so strong while alive, will be considered a potential ransom. This fact is revealed in the Qur'an, as follows:

[On that Day] no good friend will ask about his friend, even though they can see each other. An evildoer will wish that he could ransom himself from the punishment of that Day by means of his sons, his wife, his brother, or his family who sheltered him or everyone else on Earth, if that only meant that he could save himself. But no! It is a Raging Blaze. (Surat al-Ma'arij, 10-15)

By making this ransom, the unbelievers will finally expose their true character. All people will realize that even the closest relationships on Earth were based on self-interest. And, due to the clear conflict of interest exposed by that Day, these friendships will have lost all their value. Allah gave them all of the blessings they had to try them for a predetermined time. The fact that they offer them as a ransom after the time is up reveals the unbelievers' inability to comprehend reality yet again.

Handing Out The Books of Deeds

All deeds are recorded by two angels: one on the right and one on the left. Each person receives his or her record on the Day of Judgment. Not a single deed can be denied, for nothing has been left out of this record. And, it is this record that will inform people of what they have prepared for themselves in the Hereafter. The believers will receive it in their right hands, and the unbelievers will receive it in their left hands. No one will be wronged, for each deed, no matter how small, will be accounted for. The believers receive their books in great joy and pass them to those who are nearby for them to read. Allah says in the Qur'an:

On that Day you will be exposed—no concealed act you did will stay concealed. As for him who is given his Book in his right hand, he will say: "Here, come and read my Book! I counted on meeting my Reckoning." He will have a very pleasant life in an elevated Garden, its ripe fruit hanging close to hand. "Eat and drink with relish for what you did before in days gone by!" (Surat al-Haqqa, 18-24)

The Prophet says the following about the believers' reward: " Verily, Allah does not treat a believer unjustly in regard to his virtues. He would confer upon him (His blessing) in this world and would give him reward in the Hereafter." (Sahih Muslim).

On the other hand, the unbelievers will be ashamed and in great fear. Their books, which they will receive with their left hands, will contain everything they did throughout their lives, and so will be full of deeds of which Allah does not approve. The verse below reveals their fear and astonishment when confronted with this reality, as follows:

The Book will be set in place, and you will see the evildoers fearful of what is in it. They will say: "Woe to us! What is this Book that does not pass over any action, small or great, without recording it?" They will find there everything they did, and your Lord will not wrong anyone at all. (Surat al-Kahf, 49)

Not fearing Allah, associating partners with Him, putting other people's approval above His, lying, gambling, fornicating, and all other sins will be recorded in their books. As they have not assessed Allah with the assessment due to Him, they believe that they can live as they wish with their hypocrisy and that they can put forward some ostentatious good deeds they did as factors for forgiveness. Thus, fear and astonishment awaits those who did not worship Allah or who just appeared to worship Him, for their intentions also are recorded. The unbelievers' hopeless remorse is clearly understandable from what they say, as Allah reveals:

But as for him who is given his Book in his left hand, he will say: "If only I had not been given my Book and had not known about my Reckoning! If only death had really been the end! My wealth has been of no use to me. My power has vanished." (Surat al-Haqqa, 25-29)

Another verse describes the difference between the believers, who believed in Allah and the Hereafter with certainty and prepared all through their lives for the moment of truth, and the unbelievers, who forgot about the Hereafter and turned away from Allah and the believers, as follows:

As for him who is given his Book in his right hand, he will be given an easy reckoning and return to his people joyfully. But as for him who is given his Book behind his back, he will cry out for destruction but will be roasted in a Searing Blaze. He used to be joyful among his people. He thought that he was never going to return. But, in fact, his Lord was always watching him! (Surat al-Inshiqaq, 7-15)

People will be Separated

The moment awaited by those who lived according to Allah's boundaries has arrived. The believers will experience the joy of receiving what they were promised, whereas the unbelievers will experience an indescribable and great fear, one that they have never known before. The believers will not experience this fear. The Qur'an reveals that the believers and the unbelievers will be separated on this Day, for:

This is the Day of Distinction [between the true and the false] that you used to deny. (Surat as-Saffat, 21)

The Qur'an reveals that people will be separated into groups: the "Companions of the Right" (the believers) and the "Companions of the Left" (the unbelievers). Among the believers, are those who were at the forefront of the struggle on His path and were close to Him. The Qur'an refers to them as forerunners:

[Some] faces that Day will be radiant, gazing at their Lord. And [some] faces that Day will be glowering, realizing that a back-breaking blow has fallen. (Surat al-Qiyama, 22-25)

The Companions of the Right: What of the Companions of the Right? The Companions of the Left: what of the Companions of the Left? And the Forerunners, the Forerunners. Those are the Ones Brought Near. (Surat al-Waqi'a, 8-11)

Hell Will Be Displayed

On that Day, everybody will give an account of what they have done. Those who realize that they are destined for Hell will be full of regret for preferring a short life to the eternal one. While they led lives of illusory comfort, believing that they would not be punished, that the Day of Judgment would not happen, and that Allah would not punish them, Allah caught them at an unexpected moment. Now it is all over, and everyone's place has been determined. The believers and the unbelievers, before they are separated, will be shown Hell. On that Day, every person will kneel around Hell, hear its fearsome seething and rasping, and witness its hair-raising scenes. Then the believers will be saved, while the unbelievers will be left kneeling. In the Qur'an Allah reveals this truth as follows:

Man asks: "When I am dead, will I then be brought out again alive?" Does not man recall that We created him before, when he was not anything? By your Lord, We will collect them and the devils together. Then We will assemble them around Hell on their knees. Then We will drag out from every sect the one among them who is the most insolent toward the All-Merciful. Then We will know best those most deserving to roast in it. There is not one of you who will not come to it. That is the final decision of your Lord. Then We will rescue those who guarded against evil and will leave the wrongdoers in it on their knees. (Surah Maryam, 66-72)

There is obviously much wisdom in showing Hell to the believers. When they see the state of Hell from close up, they will fully realize the distinction and beauty of the faith given to them by Allah, because Hell is so frightening that their being saved from its suffering evokes a sense of sheer happiness and gratefulness. They are given the possibility to compare Hell and Paradise, and so are far more appreciative of the value of Paradise's eternal and beautiful gifts. Only by comparison can the value of what is given be fully understood. Accordingly, part of the wisdom of creating Earth as a testing place is education. On Earth, people learn right and wrong, beauty and ugliness, and good and bad by seeing it all and making comparisons. They are able to do this because Allah gave them the abilities to reason, to use their conscience, and, most of all, to be in awe of Him.

On the Day of Judgment, all believers, "the best of creatures" (Surat al-Bayyina, 7), will be separated eternally from the unbelievers, "the worst of creatures" (Surat al-Bayyina, 6), as follows:

When the Messengers' time [for testimony] is appointed—until what day is that deferred? Until the Day of Distinction [between the true and the false]. And what will teach you what the Day of Distinction is? On that Day, woe to the unbelievers! Did We not destroy the earlier peoples, then succeed them with later ones? That is how We deal with evildoers. On that Day, woe to the unbelievers! (Surat al-Mursalat, 11-19)

This Day of Distinction begins with death, continues with the resurrection and judgment, and concludes with people being sent to their eternal abode. In the Qur'an Allah describes the journey of the believers and unbelievers to their eternal place of abode in the following terms:

The throes of death come revealing the truth. That is what you were trying to evade! The Trumpet will be blown. That is the Day of the Threat. Every self will come together with a driver and a witness. "You were heedless of this, so We have stripped you of your covering and today your sight is sharp" His inseparable comrade will say: "This is what I have ready for you." "Hurl into Hell every obdurate disbeliever, impeder of good, doubt-causing aggressor, who set up another deity together with Allah. Hurl him into the terrible punishment." His inseparable comrade will say: "Our Lord, I did not make him overstep the limits. He was, in any case, far astray." He will say: "Do not argue in My Presence when I gave you advance warning of the Threat. My Word, once given, is not subject to change, and I do not wrong My servants." On the Day He says to Hell: "Are you full?" it will ask: "Are there no more to come?" And the Garden will be brought up close to the heedful, not far away: "This is what you were promised. It is for every careful penitent, those who stand in awe of the All-Merciful in the Unseen and come with a contrite heart. Enter it in peace. This is the Day of Timeless Eternity." (Surah Qaf, 19-34)

 

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