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Lesson Belief in the Last Day

The Last Day is the day in which Allah will resurrect human beings from their graves and take them into account and recompense them for their deeds accordingly. Belief in this day is a pillar among the Pillars of Faith. In this lesson, you will learn about a number of important matters pertaining to this Day.

  • Learning the meaning of the Last Day and the wisdom behind its existence
  • Learning about some of the signs of the Last Day
  • Learning about some issues related to the belief in the Last Day

The meaning of belief in the Last Day

It is the firm belief that Allah the Exalted will resurrect humanity from their graves. Then He will hold them accountable and recompense them for their deeds, such that the people of Jannah settle in their abode and the people of Hell in their abode. Belief in the Last Day is one of the pillars of faith, and faith is not valid without it. The Almighty said: “Rather, righteousness is for the one who believes in Allah and the Last Day” (Al-Baqarah:177).

What is the Last Day?

The Last Day: It is the day in which people will be resurrected for accountability and recompense. People will either settle into Paradise or Hell. It is called the Last Day because there is no day after it. This day is referred to by many names in the Quran and Sunnah. It is called the Day of Resurrection for the great affairs that will take place that day and also refers to standing of people for the Lord of the Worlds. It is also called The Hour, the Day of Decision, and the Day of Recompense, as well as other names.

Why did the Quran emphasize belief in the Last Day?

The Noble Quran confirmed belief in the Last Day and warned about it in every occasion. It emphasized its occurrence through various phrasing in Arabic, and linked belief in it with the belief in Allah the Exalted in more than one place. This was done to signify its importance and to prevent people from losing sight of it, and so they can prepare for it through faith and good deeds.

Belief in the Last Day is a necessary result of belief in Allah and His Justice, Glory be to Him. And to clarify further:

Allah does not acknowledge injustice and does not leave the oppressor without punishment, nor the oppressed without justice. Allah does not leave the benefactor without reward and recompense. He gives every one their due right. We see in this worldly life oppressors who live and die upon their oppression without being punished, and the oppressed who die as under injustice without taking their right. So what does it mean when we say that Allah does not accept injustice? It means that there must be another life other than this life we live, and there must be another time when the good will be rewarded, the oppressor will be punished, and everyone who is owed his rights will take his or her due.

Signs of the Hour

From the belief in the Last Day is the belief in the signs of the Hour and its portents. These are events that will occur before the Day of Resurrection, serving as a sign of its closeness. The signs and portents of the Hour are classified are of two types:

1- Minor Signs

These are the signs that will come before the Hour at various points in time. From these signs is the competition between barefoot, naked, shepherds to build tall buildings as indicated in the Hadith of Jibreel (peace be upon him): "He [Gabriel] said, 'Tell me about the Hour. He [The Prophet] responded, 'The one being asked has no more knowledge than the one asking.' 'He [Gabriel] said, 'Then tell me about its signs.' He [The Prophet] responded: 'They are - that a slave woman will give birth to her own master, and that you will find the barefooted, naked, poor shepherds competing with one another in the construction of taller buildings'" (Muslim 8).

2- The Major Signs

These are the great matters that appear near the establishment of the Hour. They are ten signs, as mentioned in the hadith narrated by Hudhayfah bin Usayd, who said: “The Prophet ﷺ looked at us while we were discussing, and he ﷺ said: What are you discussing? They said: We are remembering the Hour. He ﷺ said: It will not occur until you see ten signs occur before it: He mentioned the Smoke, the Antichrist, the Beast, the rising of the sun from the west, the descent of Jesus the son of Mary (peace be upon him) Gog and Magog, and three eclipses: an eclipse in the east, an eclipse in the west, an eclipse in the Arabian Peninsula. The last of the signs is a fire that will come out from Yemen expels people to their gathering place” (Muslim 2901).

What does belief in the Last Day include?

A Muslim's belief in the Last Day includes the following:

1. Belief in the Resurrection and Gathering:

Bringing the dead to life from their graves, and the returning of souls to their bodies so that people can stand before the Lord of the worlds. They will be gathered in one place barefoot and naked as they were created the first time. Belief in resurrection is indicated by the Quran, Sunnah, a sound heart and a rational mind. Hence, we believe with certainty that Allah will resurrect those in their graves, return the souls to their respective bodies, and people will stand before the Lord of the worlds.

Allah the Exalted said: {Then indeed, after that you are to die} (Al-Mu'minoon:15-16). All of the divine scriptures agree upon this. Additionally, wisdom necessitates that Allah will set for this creation a time to return to be recompensed for everything that Allah held them responsible for upon the tongues of His messengers. Allah the Exalted says: {Then did you think that We created you uselessly and that to Us you would not be returned?} (Al-Mu'minoon:115)

Belief in the Reckoning and the Scale:

Allah will hold creation accountable for the deeds that they did in worldly life. The one who was from the monotheists and obeyed Allah and His Messenger, then his account will be easy. But those who are from those who commit shirk and disobedience, their account will be difficult.

Deeds will be weight on a great scale, on one hand will be good deeds and evil deeds on the other. Whoever's good deeds outweighed his evil ones then he will be from the people of Paradise. But whoever's sins outweighed his good deeds, then he will be from the people of the Fire, and your Lord is not unjust to anyone. Allah said: {And We place the scales of justice for the Day of Resurrection, so no soul will be treated unjustly at all. And if there is [even] the weight of a mustard seed, We will bring it forth. And We are sufficient as an accountant} (Al-Anbiya:47)

3. Paradise and Hell

Paradise is the abode of eternal bliss; Allah has prepared it for the pious believers who are obedient to Allah and His Messengers. It contains within it all forms of everlasting bounties and beloved things that souls desire and eyes yearn for. Allah encourages His slaves to hasten towards acts of obedience and thereby enter a paradise as wide as the heavens and the earth: {And hasten to forgiveness from your Lord and a garden [i.e., Paradise] as wide as the heavens and earth. It is prepared for the righteous} (Ale-Imran:133).

And as for Hell, it is the abode of eternal torment. Allah has prepared it for the disbelievers who disbelieved in Allah and disobeyed His Messengers. It has forms of torment, pain, and torture that the mind cannot even imagine. Allah the Most Glorified said, warning His slaves from the Fire that He prepared for the disbelievers: {So beware of the Fire whose fuel is men and stones. It is prepared for the disbelievers} (Al-Baqarah:24).

O Allah: We ask you for Paradise and the speech and actions that can draw us closer to it. And we seek refuge in You from the Fire and what the speech and actions that can draw us closer to it.

4. The punishment of the grave and its bounties:

We believe that death is true. Allah the Exalted said: {Say, "The angel of death who has been entrusted with you will take you. Then to your Lord you will be returned} (As-Sajdah:11). It is a witnessed matter in which there is no doubt. And we believe that anything that died or was killed for any reason was at an appointed time; nothing was remaining from it. Allah the Exalted said: {So when their time has come, they will not remain behind an hour, nor will they precede [it]} (Al-A'raf:34). And we believe that whoever dies, his reckoning is established and he moved to the afterlife.

Many noble verses and hadiths came to confirm the punishment of the grave for the disbelievers and sinners and its bounties for the believers and pious. We believe in it, and we don't delve into how this happens, as the mind is incapable of comprehending its manner and reality. It is from the world of the unseen like Paradise and Hell, and not from the world of the seen. The mind's ability is only limited to comprehending that which it can deduce, infer and judge from a worldly counterpart, confined to the laws of the living world.

Additionally, the conditions of the grave are from the matters of the unseen and are thus incapable of being comprehended by the senses. If these realities were perceivable by the senses, the benefit of belief in the unseen would be lost, and the wisdom of responsibility would not exist and people would not be buried. As the Prophet ﷺ said: "If you were not (to abandon) the burying of the dead (in the grave), I would have certainly supplicated to Allah that He should make you listen the torment of the grave" (Muslim 2868, An-Nisa'i 2058). Since this wisdom is absent with regards to animals, they are able to hear and comprehend the punishment. The Prophet ﷺ said: "They are being punished with a torment that animals can hear} (Al-Bukhari 6366, Muslim 585). missed, and the wisdom of commissioning would cease, and people would not be buried, as he, peace and blessings of God be upon him, said: Muslim 2868, An-Nasa’i 2058). And since this wisdom was denied in the case of beasts, I heard it and realized it, he, peace and blessings of God be upon him, said: (They torment a torment that beasts hear) (Bukhari 6366, Muslim 586).

From the proofs of resurrection in the Quran:


That Allah the Exalted created humankind from the beginning. The One who can originate a creation is not incapable of bringing it back. Allah the Exalted said: {He is the One who originates creation. Then He recreates it} (Ar-Rum:27). And Allah said, commanding response to those who deny the revival of bones when they are disintegrated: {Say, "The One who will give them life is the One who produced them the first time; and He is, of all creation, Knowing"} (Yaseen:79).

That the earth becomes dead and lifeless, without a green tree remaining upon it. When rain descends upon the earth it, greenery moves out alive from it, filling with all types of beautiful growth. The One capable of reviving the earth after its death is the One capable of bringing the dead to life. Allah says: {And We have sent down blessed rain from the sky and made grow thereby gardens and grain from the harvest • and lofty palm trees containing fruit arranged in layers • as provision for the servants, and We have given life thereby to a dead land. Similar is the emergence [i.e., resurrection]} (Qaf:9-11).

Every rational person knows that someone capable of something grand and magnificent is more than capable of something less grand. Allah the Glorified and Exalted has created the heavens, the earth, and the celestial bodies with their vastness, grandeur, and wondrous creation. Thus, He is more capable of bringing bones to life after they have decayed. Allah the Exalted says: {Is not He who created the heavens and the earth Able to create the likes of them? Yes, [it is so]; and He is the Knowing Creator} (Yaseen:81).

Fruits of belief in the Last Day:

Belief in the Last Day has the greatest impact on the guidance of a Muslim by instilling discipline, commitment to righteous deeds, remaining conscious of Allah the Exalted, and staying away from developing evil attributes and character. That is why belief in the Last Day is often linked to righteous deeds. For example Allah says: {Allah's Mosques are only filled and maintained by those who believe in Allah and the Last Day} (At-Tawbah:18). And Allah's saying: {Those who believe in the Hereafter believe in it, and they maintain their prayers} (An-An'am:92).

2- Warn those who are heedless and preoccupied with the affairs of worldly life and its enjoyment from competing in acts of worship and seizing the time to draw closer to Allah through acts of obedience towards Him. It warns about the brief reality of life and that the Hereafter is the permanent and lasting abode. When Allah praised the messengers in the Quran and mentioned their deeds, He praised them with the cause that would push them to do those virtuous deeds, saying: {We led them to be devoted to Us through their sincere remembrance of the Final Abode} (Saad:46). That is, the reason for their virtuous deeds is that they would distinguish themselves by remember the hereafter, so this remembrance prompted them to those deeds and situations.

And when some Muslims became too lazy to comply with Allah and His Messenger's commands, Allah reminded them: {Are you satisfied with the life of this world over than the Hereafter? The enjoyment of worldly life over the Hereafter is but [very] little} (At-Tawbah:38). When a person believes in the Last Day, He will become certain that every blessing in this world is incomparable to the bounties of the Hereafter. Therefore, it is not worth even one dip of torment. And every torment in this world - in the way of Allah - is incomparable to the torment of the hereafter, and going through it for His sake is insignificant when compared to one dip in the bounty of the Hereafter.

3- Reassurance that the truth will not be lost. Whoever got unjustly taken from him even an atom’s weight, he will get it on the Day of Resurrection when he will find himself in most urgent need for it. So how can he be in distress when he knows that his right will inevitably come to him in the most critical and crucial moments? And how can he be sad when he knows that the One who judges between him and his opponents is the wisest of rulers, Glory be to Him?

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