He is extremely afraid of Allaah’s punishments in the Hereafter
Fatwa No: 131890

Question

Feeling Hopeless when hearing of the punishments... Salam, I am a revert muslim and I want to share with you my problem. I am a 20 yr old student studying in university. I converted to Islam not too long ago and I thought that I can agree of all of its percept morals and values. However, when I hear of the horrible punishments of Allah on non-muslims and disbelievers, I get extremely worried and insecure. I get even more insecure when I learnt of all the punishments in the grave for even the lightest sins, on muslims. I don't understand, I am supposed to feel peace and love from Allah, the most beneficent and the most merciful, but I can't feel it that much when hearing of the punishments that cannot be lifted or forgiven (in the hereafter). And I feel that I may be falling behind on the teachings of the prophet (pbuh), because concerning that music and arts are completely forbidden, yet its on almost every consumer product of today. At times I want to die when my Iman peaks, but alas, I still draw breath, and its terrible. keep fearing that I may fall off the path. I miss prayers at times, un-guard my gaze and etc. Why would Allah, the most-merciful one true god punish someone who was victimized by Shaitan? I feel sad knowing that my family may not be forgiven like Noah (pbuh) 's son. Can someone tell me something comforting about the firey punishments of hell? Maybe the last man out of hell will make hell completely devoid of humans right?

Answer

All perfect praise be to Allaah, The Lord of the Worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allaah, and that Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) is His slave and Messenger.

 

First of all, we thank and praise Allaah Who guided you to Islam and we ask Him to make you firm and steadfast on His Religion until the Day you meet Him.

We advise you to seek beneficial knowledge, perform good deeds and befriend righteous people, as these are the best things that help a Muslim remain steadfast on his religion.

You should know that among the requirements of believing in Allaah, is to submit to His Order and believe that He does not do anything except for wisdom and that He does not wrong any person among His Slaves. Therefore, if Allaah punishes, He punishes with His justice and if He bestows His Favour, then this is thanks to His Grace. Allaah Says when speaking on the tongue of ‘Eesa (Jesus)  may  Allaah  exalt  his  mention   (what means): {If You should punish them — indeed they are Your servants; but if You forgive them — indeed it is You Who is the Exalted in Might, the Wise.}[Quran 5:118]

Ibn Al-Qayyim  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him when commenting on this verse, he said: “This is the extreme politeness with Allaah in such a situation. That is to say O Allaah, a master is usually merciful and kind to his slaves, and those people are Your slaves and they are not slaves of any one else, so if You punish them while they are Your slaves that is because they are the most evil slaves and most arrogant against their Master and most disobedient to Him, and that is why You punished them. Being a slave to someone necessitates that the master becomes kind and merciful to his slave. So, how come that the Most Merciful, the Most Generous and the Most Kind ever would punish His Slaves were it not for their extreme arrogance and objection to His Commands and totally deserving His Punishment. Allaah Says [before the verse that is mentioned above] (what means): {Indeed, it is You who is Knower of the unseen.}[Quran 5:116]; meaning that they are Your slaves and You are Most Aware of what they conceal and what they reveal. So, if You punish them, You punish them with Your Knowledge of what you are punishing them for; because they are Your slaves, and You are Most Aware of what they have done.” [End of quote]

In conclusion, Allaah is Most Merciful of His slaves and He does not like to punish them, and if He punishes them, it is evident that they deserved this punishment. Zayd ibn Thaabit  may  Allaah  be  pleased  with  him said: “I heard the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) saying: ''If Allaah was to punish His Creation in the heavens and His Creation on earth, He would not be unjust to them, and if He was to have mercy upon them, His Mercy upon them would have been greater than their deeds.” For more benefit, please refer to Fataawa 11484 and 84190.

Dear brother, you should remember that you are speaking about a matter that is from the acts of Allaah, and He is not asked about what He does, and no one should comment on His Rulings; Allaah Says (what means): {He is not (to be) questioned about what He does, but they will be questioned.}[Quran 21:23] Allaah also Says (what means): {And Allaah decides; there is no adjuster of His decision.}[Quran 13:41]

Therefore it is not appropriate for you to object to Allaah’s acts the way you expressed in your question. Rather, you should not think about this and instead be concerned about the matters that will enable you to be saved from punishment.

Moreover, if you hear the texts announcing Allaah’s punishment and you become afraid, then some of the objectives of the Sharee’ah are achieved by mentioning such texts. Indeed, Allaah praised those who fear Him as He Says when speaking on the tongue of His believing slaves (what means): {Indeed, We fear from our Lord a Day austere and distressful.” So Allaah will protect them from the evil of that Day and give them radiance and happiness.}[Quran 76:11] Since they feared Allaah in this worldly life, Allaah made them feel safe and secure on the Day of Judgment. However, this fear would not be useful for a person unless it urges him to do good deeds and stops him from committing sins and acts of disobedience.

On the other hand, if despair enters your heart, you should ponder on the texts announcing glad tidings (to the believers) which clarify that the Mercy and Forgiveness of Allaah are vast for His slaves, and that Allaah rewards good for good deeds and forgives and overlooks bad deeds. It is for this reason that Allaah links fear with hope in many verses of the Quran. Allaah Says (what means): {[O Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention )], inform My servants that it is I who am the Forgiving, the Merciful. And that it is My punishment which is the painful punishment.}[Quran 15:49-50] For more benefit, please refer to Fataawa 116267 and 91298.

Furthermore, wishing death is forbidden and the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) advised us to do something better than this. Anas ibn Maalik  may  Allaah  be  pleased  with  him narrated that the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) said: "None of you should wish death due to a calamity that has befallen him, and if he feels an urgent need to wish death, then he has to say: "O Allaah! Let me live as long as life is better for me, and take my life if death is better for me." [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]

If a person’s death is delayed, then it might be that this is better for him; it might be that he would increase his good deeds, or that he would be enabled to repent from his sins.

As regards the acts of disobedience of a person, even if the devil is the one who causes them (by inducing man to sin), but they are still his own acts which he did of his own free will, as we clarified in Fatwa 89342.

In addition, thinking about the fate of the members of your family who died is not useful because they have met Allaah with their deeds, and they will be questioned about them while you will not be questioned about their deeds. Allaah Says (what means): {That was a nation which has passed on. It will have [the consequence of] what it earned and you will have what you have earned. And you will not be asked about what they used to do.}[Quran 2:134] No doubt, Allaah is Just in His Judgment and if they have a valid excuse, Allaah will forgive them and will not punish them. Allaah Says (what means): {And We never punish until We have sent a Messenger (to give warning.}[Quran 17:15]

Again, we advise you not to think that you cannot follow the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ); rather, you should be determined to follow him and be truthful to Allaah, and Allaah will facilitate good deeds for you and enable you to abandon acts of disobedience. Allaah Says (what means): {As for he who gives and fears Allaah. And believes in the best [reward], We will ease him toward ease.}[Quran 92:5-7]

Indeed, you have a good example in the Companions of the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) they were addicted to the consumption of alcohol, listening to music and songs. When Islam came and the belief became firm in their hearts, they abandoned all that in order to please Allaah, as they spilled all the intoxicants which they had in the streets of Madeenah.

In fact, music is prohibited, but it is not acceptable to say that all kinds of arts are forbidden; if you refer to songs, then not all kinds of songs are forbidden. Singing with words that do not include any obscenity is permissible as long as this is not accompanied by musicals instruments. For more benefit, please refer to Fataawa 81239 and 84664.

Besides, it is not true to say that music is included in all products. If we presume that what you mentioned is true, it would be permissible for a Muslim to buy the lawful products that he needs and he should fear Allaah according to this ability. The fact that there is music in a product does not mean that it is permissible to listen to it or that it is impossible to avoid it.

Dear brother, you should perform the prayer at its prescribed fixed time because abandoning it or being negligent about it is one of the great major sins. Allaah Says (what means): {So woe to those who pray. Those who are heedless of their prayer.}[Quran 107:4-5]

Indeed, the prayer is a light that enlightens the way of the person and so he walks with insight. Similarly, you should lower your gaze as this is one of the best things that bring peace of mind, but looking at forbidden things is an act of torture of one’s own self. Also, you need a pious company who would help you perform good deeds, so you should look for it.

Finally, it should be noted that if a disobedient Muslim enters Hellfire, he will come out of it one day and he will be admitted to Paradise. However, disbelievers will be eternally in Hellfire and they will never come out of it.

Allaah Knows best.

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