THE WORD OF GOD
From The Scriptures
The Quran is the book of God. It has been preserved in its entirety since its revelation to the Prophet of Islam between 610 and 632 AD. It is a book that brings glad tidings to humankind, along with divine admonition, and stresses the importance of man’s discovery of the Truth on a spiritual and intellectual level.
Translated from Arabic and commentary by
Maulana Wahiduddin Khan
In the name of God, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful. By the Mount Sinai, and by the Scripture penned on unrolled parchment, by the much-visited House, and by the lofty vault of the sky, and by the swelling sea, the punishment of your Lord shall certainly come to pass—there is no one who could avert it—on the Day when the skies are convulsed, and the mountains shudder and shake. (52: 1-10)
Mount Tur is that mountain in the desert of Sinai where Moses was awarded prophethood. The Scripture penned on unrolled parchment or the written Book (kitabun mastur) here means the Torah. The frequented house (al-bayt al-ma‘mur) means the Kabah. The lofty vaults of the sky or high roof (as-saqf al-marfu) means the sky. The swelling sea (al-bahr al-masjur) means a sea with waves. All these things bear testimony that the Day of seizure by God is certain to come. Almighty God has repeatedly given these very tidings through the prophets. This has also been mentioned in ancient Holy Scriptures. Heaven and earth announce this in their silent language. The waves of the sea relate this story to every listener.
Woe on that Day to those who deny the truth, who divert themselves with idle chatter: on that Day they shall be ruthlessly thrust into the Fire of Hell. This is the fire which you used to deny. Is this magic or do you not see? Now enter it. Whether you behave patiently or impatiently will make no difference: you are only being repaid for what you have done. (52: 11-16)
Man will have to face the result of his actions. He is being forewarned of the consequences. Those who show negligence and arrogance towards the forewarning will ultimately suffer grievous punishment. When they try to run away from this, they will find no refuge anywhere.
Truly, the God-fearing will dwell [on that Day] in gardens and in bliss, rejoicing in whatever their Lord has given them. Their Lord has saved them from the torment of the Fire, ‘Eat and drink with good cheer as a reward for your good deeds,’ reclining on couches arranged in rows. And We shall wed them to fair maidens with large beautiful eyes. (52: 17-20)
The worst crime on the part of man is denial of Truth. And this is a crime which gives birth to other crimes. Similarly, the greatest virtue of man is his acceptance of Truth. All other virtues come into existence as a result of this.
By accepting the truth, man’s sense of his own greatness or prestige is impaired. So such acceptance is the most difficult task for a man. Only those who have become truly serious out of extreme fear of God can undertake it. Those who prove to have this very great virtue deserve to have the doors to the eternal blessings of Paradise thrown open to them.
To those who have attained to faith We shall unite their offspring who have also followed them in faith, and We shall not let any of their good deeds go unrewarded; every human being is in pledge for whatever he has earned. We shall provide them in abundance with such fruit and meat as they desire.
There, they shall pass from hand to hand a cup which does not lead to any idle talk or sin. They will be waited upon by immortal youths, like pearls hidden in their shells. They will converse with one another, putting questions to each other, ‘Before this, when we were among our families, we were full of fear of God’s displeasure—God has been gracious to us and has saved us from the torment of Hell’s intense heat—before this, we used to pray to Him. Surely, He is the Beneficent, the Merciful.’ (52: 21-28)
In the Hereafter, it will not happen that one man’s sins are attributed to another, and nobody will be able to enter Paradise except on the basis of his faith and his own righteous deeds. But, the occupants of Paradise will be given one special privilege: if parents are in a high stratum of Paradise and their children in some other stratum, the children will be united with their parents so that their happiness should increase. Only one who, in spite of being among his wife and children, has always been moved by the fear of God and who linked his hopes and fears with the one and only God, will be entitled to enter the sublime world of Paradise.