By Dr. Nabil A Haroon
Source : Qu’ran , The Miracle of Islam Chapter 12.
The inimitability of the Holy Qur’an and guarding it from corruption:
A- Allah swore and promised to guard the noble Qur’an from corruption and keep it until the end of time, and is what is happening.
The noble Qur’an is the only Divine book that contains no changes or contradictions:
]إِنَّا نَحْنُ نَزَّلْنَا الذِّكْرَ وَإِنَّا لَهُ لَحَافِظُونَ[
Meaning: Verily We: It is We Who have sent down the Dhikr (i.e. the Qur’an) and surely, We will guard it (from corruption). (Surah al-Hijr – Verse No. 9)
Allah chose only the Holy Qur’an from amongst the Divine Books to guard from corruption. This is clarified in the comparison
of the verse above to the following one:
]إِنَّا أَنْزَلْنَا التَّوْرَاةَ فِيهَا هُدًى وَنُورٌ يَحْكُمُ بِهَا النَّبِيُّونَ الَّذِينَ أَسْلَمُوا لِلَّذِينَ هَادُوا وَالرَّبَّانِيُّونَ وَاالأَحْبَارُ
بِمَا اسْتُحْفِظُوا مِنْ كِتَابِ اللَّهِ وَكَانُوا عَلَيْهِ شُهَدَاءَ فَلاَ تَخْشَوُا النَّاسَ وَاخْشَوْنِ وَلاَ تَشْتَرُوا بِآيَاتِي ثَمَنًا قَلِيلاً وَمَنْ لَمْ يَحْكُمْ بِمَا أَنْزَلَ اللَّهُ فَأُولَئِكَ هُمُ الْكَافِرُونَ[
Meaning: Surely We sent down the Tawrah (Torah), wherein there is guidance and a light, thereby the Prophets, who had become Muslims gave judgments to the ones who Judaized, and (so) did the rabbis and doctors (of the Law), according to whatever they were asked to preserve the Book of Allah, and were witnesses to. So do not be apprehensive of mankind, and be apprehensive of Me, and do not trade My signs for a little price. And whoever does not judge according to what Allah has sent down, then those are they (who are) the disbelievers. (Surah al-Ma’idah – Verse No. 44)
The People of the Book were responsible for protecting the Holy Scriptures, but they did not observe this perfectly, as mentioned above (see: 11/4).
B- The Qur’an prophesied that science would progress and that people would discover more signs of the inimitability of the Islamic message.
This has actually come true. This very prophecy is a scientific historical fact verified, day by day, by the progressive march of science:
]سَنُرِيهِمْ ءَايَاتِنَا فِي الآفَاقِ وَفِي أَنْفُسِهِمْ حَتَّى يَتَبَيَّنَ لَهُمْ أَنَّهُ الْحَقُّ أَوَلَمْ يَكْفِ بِرَبِّكَ أَنَّهُ عَلَى كُلِّ شَيْءٍ شَهِيدٌ[
Meaning: We will show them Our Signs in the universe, and in their ownselves, until it becomes manifest to them that this (the Qur’an) is the truth. Is it not sufficient in regard to your Lord that He is a Witness over all things? (Surah Fussilat – Verse No. 53)
]وَقُلِ الْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ سَيُرِيكُمْ ءَايَاتِهِ فَتَعْرِفُونَهَا وَمَا رَبُّكَ بِغَافِلٍ عَمَّا تَعْمَلُونَ[
Meaning: And say: “Praise be to Allah! He will soon show you His signs (and) then you will recognize them; and in no way is your Lord ever heedless of whatever you do.” (Surah an-Naml – Verse No. 93)
]إِنْ هُوَ إِلاَّ ذِكْرٌ لِلْعَالَمِينَ * وَلَتَعْلَمُنَّ نَبَأَهُ بَعْدَ حِينٍ[
Meaning: Decidedly it (is nothing) except a Remembrance to the worlds. And indeed you will definitely know its tiding after a while. (Surah Sad – Verses Nos. 87-88)
]وَلَقَدْ جِئْنَاهُمْ بِكِتَابٍ فَصَّلْنَاهُ عَلَى عِلْمٍ هُدًى وَرَحْمَةً لِقَوْمٍ يُؤْمِنُونَ * هَلْ يَنْظُرُونَ إِلاَّ تَأْوِيلَهُ يَوْمَ يَأْتِي تَأْوِيلُهُ يَقُولُ الَّذِينَ نَسُوهُ مِنْ قَبْلُ قَدْ جَاءَتْ رُسُلُ رَبِّنَا بِالْحَقِّ فَهَلْ لَنَا مِنْ شُفَعَاءَ فَيَشْفَعُوا لَنَا أَوْ نُرَدُّ فَنَعْمَلَ غَيْرَ الَّذِي كُنَّا نَعْمَلُ قَدْ خَسِرُوا أَنْفُسَهُمْ وَضَلَّ عَنْهُمْ مَا كَانُوا يَفْتَرُونَ[
Meaning: And indeed We have already come to them with a Book that We have expounded with Knowledge, a guidance and a mercy to a people who believe. Do they look for (anything) except its interpretation? The day its interpretation comes up, the ones who forgot it earlier will say, “ The Messengers of Our Lord already came with the Truth; so, have we any intercessors, (for) then they would intercede for us, or will we be turned back to do other than what we were doing?” They have already lost their (own) selves, and what they were fabricating has erred away from them. (Surah al-A`raf – Verses Nos. 52-53)
]أَمْ يَقُولُونَ افْتَرَاهُ قُلْ فَأْتُوا بِسُورَةٍ مِثْلِهِ وَادْعُوا مَنِ اسْتَطَعْتُمْ مِنْ دُونِ اللَّهِ إِنْ كُنْتُمْ صَادِقِينَ * بَلْ كَذَّبُوا بِمَا لَمْ يُحِيطُوا بِعِلْمِهِ وَلَمَّا يَأْتِهِمْ تَأْوِيلُهُ كَذَلِكَ كَذَّبَ الَّذِينَ مِنْ قَبْلِهِمْ فَانْظُرْ كَيْفَ كَانَ عَاقِبَةُ الظَّالِمِينَ[
Meaning: “Or do they say: “He (Muhammad SAW) has forged it?” Say: Bring then a Surah (chapter) like unto it, and call upon whomsoever you can, besides Allah, if you are truthful!” Nay, they deny that; the knowledge whereof they could not compass and whereof the interpretation has not yet come unto them. Thus those before them did deny. Then see what was the end of the unjust! (Surah Yunus – Verses Nos. 38-39)
The word ‘interpretation’, mentioned in Surah al-A`raf and Surah Yunus, is a translation of the word ta’wil meaning interpretation or explanation in Arabic. The early interpreters of the Holy Qur’an did not realize the intended meaning of the word ta’wil. They explained it as a promise of punishment, despite the fact that the contexts in the two verses mentioned from Surahs al-A`raf and Yunus are concerned with the knowledge and facts that are mentioned in the Holy Qur’an. The verse of Surah al-A`raf is preceded by:
]وَلَقَدْ جِئْنَاهُمْ بِكِتَابٍ فَصَّلْنَاهُ عَلَى عِلْمٍ هُدًى وَرَحْمَةً لِقَوْمٍ يُؤْمِنُونَ[
Meaning: And indeed We have already come forward to them with a Book that We have expounded with Knowledge, a guidance, and a mercy to a people who believe. (Surah al-A`raf – Verse No. 52)
This applies also to Surah Yunus which is preceded by the following verse:
]أَمْ يَقُولُونَ افْتَرَاهُ قُلْ فَأْتُوا بِسُورَةٍ مِثْلِهِ وَادْعُوا مَنِ اسْتَطَعْتُمْ مِنْ دُونِ اللَّهِ إِنْ كُنْتُمْ صَادِقِينَ[
Meaning: Or do they say: “He (Muhammad SAW) has forged it?” Say: “Bring then a Surah (chapter) like unto it, and call upon whomsoever you can, besides Allah, if you are truthful! (Surah Yunus – Verse No. 38)
This means that the true understanding and sound interpretation of the Holy Qur’an and its inimitable signs will be discovered after a while, when Allah wills it.
C- The Holy Qur’an challenged all people, jointly and individually, to produce a text of equivalent eloquence to the Qur’an, and predicted the inability of the coming generations to do so.
This is verified by (Surah Yunus – Verse No. 38) and the following verses:
]أَمْ يَقُولُونَ افْتَرَاهُ قُلْ فَأْتُوا بِعَشْرِ سُوَرٍ مِثْلِهِ مُفْتَرَيَاتٍ وَادْعُوا مَنِ اسْتَطَعْتُمْ مِنْ دُونِ اللَّهِ
إِنْ كُنْتُمْ صَادِقِينَ[
Meaning: Or they say, “He (Prophet Muhammad SAW) forged it (the Qur’an).” Say: “Bring you then ten forged Surah (chapters) like unto it, and call whomsoever you can, other than Allah (to your help), if you speak the truth! (Surah Hud – Verse No. 13)
]قُلْ لَئِنِ اجْتَمَعَتِ الإِنْسُ وَالْجِنُّ عَلَى أَنْ يَأْتُوا بِمِثْلِ هَذَا الْقُرْءَانِ لاَ يَأْتُونَ بِمِثْلِهِ
وَلَوْ كَانَ بَعْضُهُمْ لِبَعْضٍ ظَهِيرًا[
Meaning: Say: “If the mankind and the jinns were together to produce the like of this Qur’an, they could not produce the like thereof, even if they helped one another. (Surah al-Isra’ – Verse No. 88)
]قُلْ فَأْتُوا بِكِتَابٍ مِنْ عِنْدِ اللَّهِ هُوَ أَهْدَى مِنْهُمَا أَتَّبِعْهُ إِنْ كُنْتُمْ صَادِقِينَ[
Meaning: Say (to them, O Muhammad SAW): “Then bring a Book from Allah, which is a better guide than these two (Torah and the Qur’an), that I may follow it, if you are truthful. (Surah al-Qasas – Verse No. 49)
]أَمْ يَقُولُونَ تَقَوَّلَهُ بَلْ لاَ يُؤْمِنُونَ * فَلْيَأْتُوا بِحَدِيثٍ مِثْلِهِ إِنْ كَانُوا صَادِقِينَ[
Meaning: Or do they say: “He (Muhammad SAW) has forged it (this Qur’an)?” Nay! They believe not! Let them then produce a recital like unto it if they are truthful. (Surah al-Tur – Verses Nos. 33-34)
The Qur’anic prophecy came true. No one has claimed to have written a text with rhetorical equivalency to that of the Holy Qur’an. Arab linguists undertook the responsibility to study and analyze the Qur’anic text, and compare it to the ancient and modern literature in the Arabic language. They proved that the Qur’anic address is distinguished and inimitable. Every surah, sentence, word, and even letter in the Holy Qur’an is framed to give the most precise expression and, simultaneously, to deeply influence the hearing, mind, and heart of a person (see Chapter One). They still discover more mysteries of the Qur’anic rhetoric. The Holy Qur’an will still remain a clearly eloquent miracle until the end of time.
12/2 The victory of the call to Islam
A- The Holy Qur’an predicted that the Islamic call would prevail despite the severe and difficult circumstances that would surround it. In addition to this, it predicted that Allah would protect his Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) from assassination by the unbelievers and that the Muslims would conquer Mecca and enter the Ka`bah to clear it from idols:
]يَاأَيُّهَا الرَّسُولُ بَلِّغْ مَا أُنْزِلَ إِلَيْكَ مِنْ رَبِّكَ وَإِنْ لَمْ تَفْعَلْ فَمَا بَلَّغْتَ رِسَالَتَهُ وَاللَّهُ يَعْصِمُكَ مِنَ النَّاسِ
إِنَّ اللَّهَ لاَيَهْدِي الْقَوْمَ الْكَافِرِينَ[
Meaning: O Messenger (Muhammad SAW)! Proclaim (the Message) which has been sent down to you from your Lord. And if you do not, then you have not conveyed His Message. Allah will protect you from mankind. Verily, Allah guides not the people who disbelieve. (Surah al-Ma’idah – Verse No. 67)
]إِنَّ الَّذِي فَرَضَ عَلَيْكَ الْقُرْءَانَ لَرَادُّكَ إِلَى مَعَادٍ قُلْ رَبِّي أَعْلَمُ مَنْ جَاءَ بِالْهُدَى وَمَنْ هُوَ فِي ضَلَالٍ مُبِينٍ [
Meaning: Surely He who ordained the Qur’an upon you will indeed revert you to a place of turning back (i.e to Mecca). Say, “My Lord knows best who comes with guidance and who is in evident error. (Surah al-Qasas – Verses Nos. 85-86)
]إِنَّا فَتَحْنَا لَكَ فَتْحًا مُبِينًا * لِيَغْفِرَ لَكَ اللَّهُ مَا تَقَدَّمَ مِنْ ذَنْبِكَ وَمَا تَأَخَّرَ وَيُتِمَّ نِعْمَتَهُ عَلَيْكَ وَيَهْدِيَكَ صِرَاطًا مُسْتَقِيمًا * وَيَنْصُرَكَ اللَّهُ نَصْرًا عَزِيزًا[
Meaning: Verily, We have given you (O Muhammad SAW) a manifest victory. That Allah may forgive you your sins of the past and the future, and complete His Favour on you, and guide you on the Straight Path; And that Allah may help you with strong help. (Surah al-Fat-h – Verses Nos. 1-3)
] لَقَدْ صَدَقَ اللَّهُ رَسُولَهُ الرُّؤْيَا بِالْحَقِّ لَتَدْخُلُنَّ الْمَسْجِدَ الْحَرَامَ إِنْ شَاءَ اللَّهُ ءَامِنِينَ مُحَلِّقِينَ رُءُوسَكُمْ َمُقَصِّرِينَ لاَ تَخَافُونَ فَعَلِمَ مَا لَمْ تَعْلَمُوا فَجَعَلَ مِنْ دُونِ ذَلِكَ فَتْحًا قَرِيبًا[
Meaning: Indeed Allah shall fulfil the true vision which He showed to His Messenger (SAW) in very truth. Certainly, you shall enter the Inviolable Mosque (in Mecca); if Allah wills, secure, (some) having your heads shaved, and (some) having your head hair cut short, having no fear. He knew what you knew not, and He granted besides that a near victory. (Surah al-Fat-h – Verse No. 27)
This verse was revealed when the Muslims were weak and oppressed, during the `Umrah of Qada’ in which the Muslims were obliged to accept the conditions of the peace treaty of al-Hudaybiyah imposed upon them by the polytheists. The reason behind the revelation of this verse is clarified by the following narration:
” When the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) and his Companions immigrated to Madinah and were supported by Al-Ansar, all the Arabs were against them. The Muslims would sleep, and spend the daytime, holding onto their weapons. They said to each other: “Do you think that we will live until we can sleep safely, fearing no one but Allah?” (Reported by Al-Hakim and At-Tabarany)
]يُرِيدُونَ لِيُطْفِئُوا نُورَ اللَّهِ بِأَفْوَاهِهِمْ وَاللَّهُ مُتِمُّ نُورِهِ وَلَوْ كَرِهَ الْكَافِرُونَ * هُوَ الَّذِي أَرْسَلَ رَسُولَهُ بِالْهُدَى وَدِينِ الْحَقِّ لِيُظْهِرَهُ عَلَى الدِّينِ كُلِّهِ وَلَوْ كَرِهَ الْمُشْرِكُونَ[
Meaning: They intend to put out the Light of Allah with their mouths. But Allah will complete His Light even though the disbelievers hate (it). He it is Who has sent His Messenger with guidance and the religion of Truth to make it victorious over all (other) religions even though the associators hate (it). (Surah as-Saf – Verses Nos. 8-9)
] هُوَ الَّذِي أَرْسَلَ رَسُولَهُ بِالْهُدَى وَدِينِ الْحَقِّ لِيُظْهِرَهُ عَلَى الدِّينِ كُلِّهِ وَلَوْ كَرِهَ الْمُشْرِكُونَ[
Meaning: It is He Who has sent His Messenger with guidance and the religion of Truth, to make it superior over all religions even though the associators. (Surah al-Tawbah – Verse No. 33)
]إِنَّ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا يُنْفِقُونَ أَمْوَالَهُمْ لِيَصُدُّوا عَنْ سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ فَسَيُنْفِقُونَهَا ثُمَّ تَكُونُ عَلَيْهِمْ حَسْرَةً ثُمَّ يُغْلَبُونَ
وَالَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا إِلَى جَهَنَّمَ يُحْشَرُونَ[
Meaning: Verily, those who disbelieve spend their wealth to hinder (men) from the Path of Allah, and so will they continue to spend it; but in the end it will become an anguish for them. Then they will be overcome. And those who disbelieve will be gathered unto Hell. (Surah al-Anfal – Verse No. 36)
]سَيُهْزَمُ الْجَمْعُ وَيُوَلُّونَ الدُّبُرَ[
Meaning: Their multitude will be put to flight, and they will show their backs. (Surah al-Qamar – Verse No. 45)
The last verse was revealed in Mecca, when there was no room for thinking or speaking about fighting the polytheists, and their defeat and escape.
B- The Holy Qur’an predicted the death of a specific group of people as disbelievers, despite the fact that there was no obstacle in their way to embrace Islam, or pretend to do in order to disprove and discredit the Qur’an. In fact, the most prominent disbelievers – who were most hostile to Muslims – embraced Islam, such as `Umar Ibn ul-Khattab and Khalid Ibn ul-Walid (may Allah be pleased with them).
The following Qur’anic verses are concerned with al-Walid Ibn ul-Mughirah, one of the major disbelievers:
]ذَرْنِي وَمَنْ خَلَقْتُ وَحِيدًا * وَجَعَلْتُ لَهُ مَالاً مَمْدُودًا * وَبَنِينَ شُهُودًا * وَمَهَّدْتُ لَهُ تَمْهِيدًا * ثُمَّ يَطْمَعُ أَنْ أَزِيدَ * كَلاَّ إِنَّهُ كَانَ لآيَاتِنَا عَنِيدًا * سَأُرْهِقُهُ صَعُودًا * إِنَّهُ فَكَّرَ وَقَدَّرَ * فَقُتِلَ كَيْفَ قَدَّرَ * ثُمَّ قُتِلَ كَيْفَ قَدَّرَ * ثُمَّ نَظَرَ * ثُمَّ عَبَسَ وَبَسَرَ * ثُمَّ أَدْبَرَ وَاسْتَكْبَرَ * فَقَالَ إِنْ هَذَا إِلاَّ سِحْرٌ يُؤْثَرُ * إِنْ هَذَا إِلاَّ قَوْلُ الْبَشَرِ * سَأُصْلِيهِ سَقَرَ[
Meaning: Leave Me Alone (to deal) with whom I created Alone. And then granted him resources in abundance. And children to be by his side! And made life smooth and comfortable for him! After all that he desires that I should give more; Nay! Verily, he has been stubborn and opposing Our signs. I shall oblige him to face a severe torment! Verily, he thought and plotted; So let him be cursed! How he plotted! And once more let him be cursed, how he plotted! Then he thought; Then he frowned and he looked in a bad tempered way; Then he turned back and was proud; Then he said: “This is nothing but magic from that of old; “This is nothing but the word of a human being!” I will cast him into Hell-fire. (Surah al-Muddathir – Verses Nos. 11-26)
The following Qur’anic verses are concerned with Abu Lahab (one of the notorious disbelievers who was also an uncle of the Prophet) and his wife:
]تَبَّتْ يَدَا أَبِي لَهَبٍ وَتَبَّ * مَا أَغْنَى عَنْهُ مَالُهُ وَمَا كَسَبَ * سَيَصْلَى نَارًا ذَاتَ لَهَبٍ *؟
وَامْرَأَتُهُ حَمَّالَةَ الْحَطَبِ * فِي جِيدِهَا حَبْلٌ مِنْ مَسَدٍ[
Meaning: Perish the two hands of Abu Lahab (an uncle of the Prophet), and perish he! His wealth will not benefit him! He will be burnt in a Fire of blazing flames! And his wife too, who carries wood (thorns of Sadan which she used to put on the way of the Prophet SAW and used to slander him). In her neck is a twisted rope of Masad (palm fibre). (Surah al-Masad – Verses Nos. 1-5).
As for the following verses, they are concerned with an-Nadr Ibn ul-Harith, another of the eminent disbelievers:
]وَمِنَ النَّاسِ مَنْ يَشْتَرِي لَهْوَ الْحَدِيثِ لِيُضِلَّ عَنْ سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ بِغَيْرِ عِلْمٍ وَيَتَّخِذَهَا هُزُوًا أُولَئِكَ لَهُمْ عَذَابٌ مُهِينٌ * وَإِذَا تُتْلَى عَلَيْهِ ءَايَاتُنَا وَلَّى مُسْتَكْبِرًا كَأَنْ لَمْ يَسْمَعْهَا كَأَنَّ فِي أُذُنَيْهِ وَقْرًا فَبَشِّرْهُ بِعَذَابٍ أَلِيمٍ[
Meaning: And of mankind is he who purchases idle talks (i.e. music, singing, etc.) to mislead (men) from the Path of Allah without knowledge, and by way of mockery. For such there will be a humiliating torment (in the Hell-fire). (Surah Luqman – Verses Nos. 6-7)
12/3 The defeat of the Persians
The historical prophecies mentioned in the Holy Qur’an refer to some events of the unseen, known only to the Creator of the universe, the One Who sustains and protects all that exists, and the Exalted. These prophecies came true one after the other. One of the most famous prophecies was the defeat of the Persians by the Romans, within three to nine years thence:
]غُلِبَتِ الرُّومُ * فِي أَدْنَى الأَرْضِ وَهُمْ مِنْ بَعْدِ غَلَبِهِمْ سَيَغْلِبُونَ * فِي بِضْعِ سِنِينَ لِلَّهِ الأَمْرُ مِنْ قَبْلُ وَمِنْ بَعْدُ وَيَوْمَئِذٍ يَفْرَحُ الْمُؤْمِنُونَ * بِنَصْرِ اللَّهِ يَنْصُرُ مَنْ يَشَاءُ وَهُوَ الْعَزِيزُ الرَّحِيمُ * وَعْدَ اللَّهِ لاَ يُخْلِفُ اللَّهُ وَعْدَهُ وَلَكِنَّ أَكْثَرَ النَّاسِ لاَ يَعْلَمُونَ[
Meaning: The Romans have been defeated. In the nearer land (the Levant), and they, after their defeat, will be victorious. Within Bid` (Arabic; three to nine) years. The decision of the matter, before and after (these events) is only with Allah. And on that Day, the believers (i.e. Muslims) will rejoice. With the help of Allah, He helps whom He wills, and He is the All-Mighty, the Most Merciful. It is a Promise of Allah, and Allah fails not in His Promise, but most of men know not. (Surah al-Rum – Verses Nos.1-6)
The Holy Qur’an stated that the victory of the Romans would be within three to nine years, despite the fact that all the signs indicated that the Persians would gain the final victory. This was accompanied also by the prophesy of the victory of the Muslims in the great Battle of Badr.
12/4 Environmental degradation
The Holy Qur’an predicted the deterioration and corruption that would afflict the earth due to mankind’s acts, covetous desires, and misuse of the natural resources. It predicted man’s inattention to assume his responsibility for populating and developing the earth, and cooperating for the public good, the very responsibility with which Allah, the Glorified and Exalted, had entrusted man:
]ظَهَرَ الْفَسَادُ فِي الْبَرِّ وَالْبَحْرِ بِمَا كَسَبَتْ أَيْدِي النَّاسِ لِيُذِيقَهُمْ بَعْضَ الَّذِي عَمِلُوا لَعَلَّهُمْ يَرْجِعُونَ[
Meaning: Corruption has appeared in the land and the sea for what mankind’s hands have earned, that He may make them taste some (part) of that which they have done, that possibly they would return. (Surah al-Rum – Verse No. 41)
]وَلاَ تُفْسِدُوا فِي الأَرْضِ بَعْدَ إِصْلاَحِهَا وَادْعُوهُ خَوْفًا وَطَمَعًا إِنَّ رَحْمَةَ اللَّهِ قَرِيبٌ مِنَ الْمُحْسِنِينَ[
Meaning: And do not corrupt in the earth after being tilled, and invoke Him in fear and longing. Surely the mercy of Allah is near to the fair-doers. (Surah al-A`raf – Verse No. 56)
Combining the land and the sea together, in the verse of Surah Ar-Rum, affirms that it is the corruption of the environment that is indicated in the first verse. Some of the early interpreters of the Holy Qur’an believed that the Arabic word fasad (corruption) referred to moral corruption; but, what kind of moral corruption that can afflict the seas due to the struggles of human beings?
The Qur’an predicted that man could not be relied upon, to shoulder the responsibility of sustaining Allah’s graces on the earth, whatever level of knowledge and science he may achieve, without Allah’s guidance:
]إِنَّا عَرَضْنَا الأَمَانَةَ عَلَى السَّمَوَاتِ وَالأَرْضِ وَالْجِبَالِ فَأَبَيْنَ أَنْ يَحْمِلْنَهَا وَأَشْفَقْنَ مِنْهَا
وَحَمَلَهَا الإِنْسَانُ إِنَّهُ كَانَ ظَلُومًا جَهُولاً[
Meaning: Surely We presented the Trust to the heavens and the earth and mountains. Yet they refused to carry it and felt timorous about it, and man carried it. Surely he has been constantly unjust, constantly ignorant. (Surah al-Ahzab – Verse No. 72)
12/5 Omens of the Hour (the Day of Resurrection)
The Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) conveyed to the people what the trustworthy spirit (Gabriel) revealed to him concerning the omens of the Day of Resurrection. Some of these omens are minor and will gradually occur throughout time until the Day of Judgment, while others are major and will occur right before the Day of Judgment, when repentance will be useless and it will do no good for a person to believe then, if he did not believe beforehand.
Some of the minor omens of the Hour that occurred throughout the eventful history of the world were foretold to us by the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). This is a decisive proof of the truthfulness of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) and his message. Let us consider the following Hadiths:
– “If you find barefooted, destitute sheep-herds vying with one another in the construction of magnificent buildings, then, wait for the Day of Resurrection.” (Reported by al-Bukhari and Muslim)
– “A time is certainly coming to mankind when only the receiver of usury (interest) will remain, and if he does not receive it, some of its dust will reach him.” (Reported by Abu Dawud and Ibn Majah)
– “The Hour (Last Day) will not be established until (religious) knowledge will be taken away (by the death of religious scholars), earthquakes will be very frequent, time will pass quickly, afflictions will appear, murders will increase, and money will overflow amongst you, and people will take pride in tall buildings.” (Reported by al-Bukhari)
– “It is from the conditions of the Last Hour that knowledge would be taken away and ignorance would prevail (upon the world), adultery would become rampant, and liquor would be drunk.” (Reported by al-Bukhari and Muslim).
– “There are two types amongst the denizens of Hell, the one possessing whips like the tail of an ox and they flog people with their help. (The second one) the women who would be naked in spite of their being dressed, who are seduced (to wrong paths) and seduce others, with their hair high like humps. These women will not get into Paradise and they will not smell the scent of Paradise.” (Reported by Muslim and Ahmad)
– “A sign of the imminence of the Last Hour is that males will emulate females and males will emulate males.” (Reported by Abu Na`im)
– “Immediately before the Last Hour, people will greet a particular person from amongst a group (instead of spreading greetings), trade will spread to the extent that a woman will help her husband in trade, people will sever the ties of kinship, knowledge will rage, false testimony will appear, and concealment of the evidence will rise.” (Reported by Ahmad)
– “A group of people from the Muslims will remain on the Right Path and continue until the Day of Judgment to triumph over those who oppose them. No hurt can come to them from those who forsake them until Allah brings about His decision.” (Reported by Muslim, at-Tirmidhi, and Abu Dawud).
Let us compare these Hadiths to actual historical events:
– The whole world has come to depend on interest, whether we accept this or not. The International Monetary system with which all countries are connected, is directed by large financial institutions (controlled by the Jews) which depend upon interest. The currency, on which all financial dealings depend, has an unstable gold standard. This means that the actual value of money may increase or decrease day by day.
– Adultery, intoxicants, and drug addiction: They have spread quickly in all communities. The world’s mass media and arts propagate these evils. In fact, they have become the major directive of many people’s minds in all communities.
– The death of the scholars: Prominent religious scholars, in this new time of ignorance, are rare. Our age has invented means of publication and mass communication controlled mainly by the atheists and the vicious.
– Severing the ties of kinship: Families are overwhelmed by dissention and close families have come to an end, except in some communities that still maintain true faith.
– The spread of trade: The world has become a single global market whose financial markets are connected through computers and satellites. It is controlled by mega multinationals that direct not only trade, prices, and business, but also governments, wars and politics.
– Taking pride in tall buildings: Skyscrapers have reached a height that the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) would not have been able imagine. The inhabitants of the American continent, whose ancestors were European immigrants belonging to low positions in life, have led the way in building skyscrapers. They used to be famous for being shepherds.
– Males emulate females and vice versa: This has become an evident characteristic of the dominant nations. In fact, homosexuality has become an acknowledged way of life, and a homosexual partnership equivalent to a normal marriage.
– A group of Muslims will remain on the Right Path: Islam and Islamic call has not declined despite the passage of time and having been recurrently attacked by its enemies. Rather, Allah chooses from amongst every generation those who will revive the dead hearts of the Muslims and support the expansion of Islam.
12/6 Scenes of the Day of Resurrection
Only Allah knows the realities of the events of the Day of Resurrection, and no one can reveal such events but Him. Qur’anic verses caution the people against the horrors of the Day of Resurrection, describing them in a way that is easy to be perceived and that is in accordance with the knowledge and understanding revealed to mankind by Allah. Thus, the Holy Qur’an remains truthful and inimitable for all generations.
Many of the omens of the Last Hour are in accordance with what we already know about the universe and its nature, such as in the splitting of the atmosphere:
]إِذَا السَّمَاءُ انْشَقَّتْ[
Meaning: When the heaven is split asunder … (Surah al-Inshiqaq – Verse No. 1)
]إِذَا السَّمَاءُ انْفَطَرَتْ[
Meaning: When the heaven is cleft asunder … (Surah al-Infitar – Verse No. 1)
Another example is the gaseous stars (like the sun) that evolve into red giants with age, and subsequently they cool, shrink, and transform into what are known as white dwarves. This has been practically observed during astronomical studies and is also described in two Qur’anic verses concerning the sun:
]إِذَا الشَّمْسُ كُوِّرَتْ * وَإِذَا النُّجُومُ انْكَدَرَتْ[
Meaning: When the sun Kuwwirat (wound round and lost its light ). And when the stars will be turbid. (Surah at-Takwir – Verses Nos. 1-2)
Solid stars fragment and scatter when the cosmic system becomes disordered. Allah says in the Holy Qur’an:
]وَإِذَا الْكَوَاكِبُ انْتَثَرَتْ[
Meaning: And when the planets will be strewn. (Surah al-Infitar – Verse No. 2)
Other examples are the bursting or “gushing forth” of the seas and the scraping of the atmosphere:
]وَإِذَا الْبِحَارُ فُجِّرَتْ[
Meaning: And when the seas shall be made to gush forth. (Surah al-Infitar – Verse No. 3)
]وَإِذَا السَّمَاءُ كُشِطَتْ[
Meaning: And when the heaven will be scraped off. (Surah at-Takwir – Verse No. 11)
Another example is the reference to the extremely small volume of solid mass of the heavenly bodies relative to the cosmic space. These will gather once more on the Day of Resurrection, by Allah’s leave. This is in accordance with the so-called “Big-Crunch”, the opposite of the “Big-Bang” at the start of creation. Allah knows Best:
]يَوْمَ نَطْوِي السَّمَاءَ كَطَيِّ السِّجِلِّ لِلْكُتُبِ كَمَا بَدَأْنَا أَوَّلَ خَلْقٍ نُعِيدُهُ وَعْدًا عَلَيْنَا إِنَّا كُنَّا فَاعِلِينَ[
Meaning: And (remember) the Day when We shall roll up (fold)the heavens like a scroll rolled up for books, as We began the first creation, We shall repeat it, (it is) a promise binding upon Us. Truly, We shall do it. (Surah al-Anbiya’ – Verse No. 104)
Allah, the Glorified and the Exalted, affirmed the impossibility of knowing or being able to predict the timing of the Last Hour. This possibility is also affirmed by modern science, for an obvious reason referred to above when discussing the dimensions of the universe. The universe includes billions of galaxies. The nearest one is 700,000 light years away from the Milky Way, and light has to travel for 50,000 light years in our galaxy to reach its edge from the center. Simply, this means that the most powerful method of observation on earth cannot witness or discover a great cosmic event inside our galaxy except after a few, tens, hundreds, thousands, or hundreds of thousands of years after its occurrence. So what about an event in a far galaxy? If the first cosmic event of the Day of Resurrection will begin with the explosion of a star or a group of stars, or with the collision of one heavenly body with another from inside or outside of our galaxy (that could lead to disorder in the Milky Way, and will also include our solar system), we will only realize it a long time later, when its horrible consequences would have already befallen our own earth. How can we know if the beginnings of the Hour may have already occurred somewhere in the wide universe? Who can scientifically, in the light of this analysis, deny the fact that it is possible for the outcome of this event to suddenly reach our earth at any time? Is not this a great sign of the inimitability of the Noble Qur’an that recurrently affirms the impossibility of predicting the Last Hour and states that only Allah knows its appointed time?
Allah has truly spoken the truth in the following verses:
]إِنَّ السَّاعَةَ ءَاتِيَةٌ أَكَادُ أُخْفِيهَا لِتُجْزَى كُلُّ نَفْسٍ بِمَا تَسْعَى[
Meaning: Verily, the Hour is coming and My Will is to keep it hidden that every person may be rewarded for that which he strives.” (Surah Taha – Verse No. 15)
]فَهَلْ يَنْظُرُونَ إِلاَّ السَّاعَةَ أَنْ تَأْتِيَهُمْ بَغْتَةً فَقَدْ جَاءَ أَشْرَاطُهَا فَأَنَّى لَهُمْ إِذَا جَاءَتْهُمْ ذِكْرَاهُمْ[
Meaning: Do they then await (anything) other than the Hour, that it should come upon them suddenly? But some of its portents (indications and signs) have already come, and when it (actually) is on them, how can they benefit then by their reminder? (Surah Muhammad – Verse No. 18)
]قَدْ خَسِرَ الَّذِينَ كَذَّبُوا بِلِقَاءِ اللَّهِ حَتَّى إِذَا جَاءَتْهُمُ السَّاعَةُ بَغْتَةً قَالُوا يَاحَسْرَتَنَا عَلَى مَا فَرَّطْنَا فِيهَا
وَهُمْ يَحْمِلُونَ أَوْزَارَهُمْ عَلَى ظُهُورِهِمْ أَلاَ سَاءَ مَا يَزِرُونَ[
Meaning: They indeed are losers who denied their Meeting with Allah, until all of a sudden, the Hour is on them, and they say: “Alas for us that we gave no thought to it,” while they will bear their burdens on their backs; and evil indeed are the burdens that they will bear! (Surah al-An`am – Verse No. 31)
]أَفَأَمِنُوا أَنْ تَأْتِيَهُمْ غَاشِيَةٌ مِنْ عَذَابِ اللَّهِ أَوْ تَأْتِيَهُمُ السَّاعَةُ بَغْتَةً وَهُمْ لاَ يَشْعُرُونَ[
Meaning: Do they then feel secure from the coming against them of the covering veil of the Torment of Allah, or of the coming against them of the (Final) Hour, all of a sudden while they perceive not? (Surah Yusuf – Verse No. 107)
]وَلاَ يَزَالُ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا فِي مِرْيَةٍ مِنْهُ حَتَّى تَأْتِيَهُمُ السَّاعَةُ بَغْتَةً أَوْ يَأْتِيَهُمْ عَذَابُ يَوْمٍ عَقِيمٍ[
Meaning: And those who disbelieve will not cease to be in doubt about it until the Hour comes suddenly upon them, or there comes to them the torment of the Day after which there will be no night (i.e. the Day of Resurrection). (Surah al-Hajj – Verse No. 55)
]هَلْ يَنْظُرُونَ إِلاَّ السَّاعَةَ أَنْ تَأْتِيَهُمْ بَغْتَةً وَهُمْ لاَ يَشْعُرُونَ[
Meaning: Do they only wait for the Hour that it shall come upon them suddenly, while they perceive not? (Surah az-Zukhruf – Verse No. 66)
]بَلْ تَأْتِيهِمْ بَغْتَةً فَتَبْهَتُهُمْ فَلاَ يَسْتَطِيعُونَ رَدَّهَا وَلاَ هُمْ يُنْظَرُونَ[
Meaning: Nay, it (Fire or the Day of Resurrection) will come upon them all of a sudden and will perplex them, and they will have no power to avert it, nor will they get respite. (Surah al-Anbiya’ – Verse No. 40 )
]يَسْأَلُونَكَ عَنِ السَّاعَةِ أَيَّانَ مُرْسَاهَا قُلْ إِنَّمَا عِلْمُهَا عِنْدَ رَبِّي لاَ يُجَلِّيهَا لِوَقْتِهَا إِلاَّ هُوَ ثَقُلَتْ فِي السَّمَوَاتِ وَالأَرْضِ لاَ تَأْتِيكُمْ إِلاَّ بَغْتَةً يَسْأَلُونَكَ كَأَنَّكَ حَفِيٌّ عَنْهَا قُلْ إِنَّمَا عِلْمُهَا عِنْدَ اللَّهِ وَلَكِنَّ أَكْثَرَ النَّاسِ لاَ يَعْلَمُونَ[
Meaning: They ask you about the Hour (Day of Resurrection): “When will be its appointed time?” Say: “The knowledge thereof is with my Lord (Alone). None can reveal its time but He. Heavy is its burden through the heavens and the earth. It shall not come upon you except all of a sudden.” They ask you as if you have a good knowledge of it. Say: “The knowledge thereof is with Allah (Alone) but most of mankind know not. (Surah al-A`raf – Verse No. 187)
]إِنَّ اللَّهَ عِنْدَهُ عِلْمُ السَّاعَةِ وَيُنَزِّلُ الْغَيْثَ وَيَعْلَمُ مَا فِي الأَرْحَامِ وَمَا تَدْرِي نَفْسٌ مَاذَا تَكْسِبُ غَدًا
وَمَا تَدْرِي نَفْسٌ بِأَيِّ أَرْضٍ تَمُوتُ إِنَّ اللَّهَ عَلِيمٌ خَبِيرٌ[
Meaning: Verily, Allah! With Him (Alone) is the knowledge of the Hour, He sends down the rain, and knows that which is in the wombs. No person knows what he will earn tomorrow, and no person knows in what land he will die. Verily, Allah is All-Knower, All-Aware (of things). (Surah Luqman – Verse No. 34)
]يَسْأَلُكَ النَّاسُ عَنِ السَّاعَةِ قُلْ إِنَّمَا عِلْمُهَا عِنْدَ اللَّهِ وَمَا يُدْرِيكَ لَعَلَّ السَّاعَةَ تَكُونُ قَرِيبًا[
Meaning: People ask you concerning the Hour, say: “The knowledge of it is with Allah only. What do you know? It may be that the Hour is near! (Surah al-Ahzab – Verse No. 63)
]إِلَيْهِ يُرَدُّ عِلْمُ السَّاعَةِ وَمَا تَخْرُجُ مِنْ ثَمَرَاتٍ مِنْ أَكْمَامِهَا وَمَا تَحْمِلُ مِنْ أُنْثَى وَلاَ تَضَعُ إِلاَّ بِعِلْمِهِ
وَيَوْمَ يُنَادِيهِمْ أَيْنَ شُرَكَائِي قَالُوا ءَاذَنَّاكَ مَا مِنَّا مِنْ شَهِيدٍ[
Meaning: “(The learned men) refer to Him (Alone) the knowledge of the Hour. No fruit comes out of its sheath, nor does a female conceive (within her womb), nor brings forth (young), except by His Knowledge. And on the Day when He will call unto them (polytheists) (saying): “Where are My (so-called) partners (whom you did invent)?” They will say: “We inform You that none of us bears witness to it (that they are Your partners)!” (Surah Fussilat – Verse No. 47)
]وَتَبَارَكَ الَّذِي لَهُ مُلْكُ السَّمَوَاتِ وَالأَرْضِ وَمَا بَيْنَهُمَا وَعِنْدَهُ عِلْمُ السَّاعَةِ وَإِلَيْهِ تُرْجَعُونَ[
Meaning: And blessed be He to Whom belongs the kingdom of the heavens and the earth, and all that is between them, and with Whom is the knowledge of the Hour, and to Whom you (all) will be returned. (Surah az-Zukhruf – Verse No. 85)
]يَسْأَلُونَكَ عَنِ السَّاعَةِ أَيَّانَ مُرْسَاهَا * فِيمَ أَنْتَ مِنْ ذِكْرَاهَا * إِلَى رَبِّكَ مُنْتَهَاهَا * إِنَّمَا أَنْتَ مُنْذِرُ مَنْ يَخْشَاهَا * كَأَنَّهُمْ يَوْمَ يَرَوْنَهَا لَمْ يَلْبَثُوا إِلاَّ عَشِيَّةً أَوْ ضُحَاهَا[
Meaning: They ask you (O Muhammad SAW) about the Hour, when will be its appointed time? You have no knowledge to say anything about it, To your Lord belongs (the knowledge of) the term thereof? (Surah an-Nazi`at – Verses Nos. 42-44)
Allah has spoken the truth in His Noble Inimitable Book.