Wants explanation of Quran (53:38)
Fatwa No: 90294

  • Fatwa Date:11-7-2005 - Jumaadaa Al-Aakhir 5, 1426
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I have a question about something I read in the Quran verse: 38 part 27, "That no burdened person (with sins) shall bear the burden (sins) of another." So, how is that possible if Aadams some who was the first to kill, he will take sins from everyone who kills after him? And how can someone who wears revealing clothes take sins for someone looking at them with desire? I am confused, this doesn't make sense to me. Please help me to understand.


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.


Allaah Says (what means): {… and no bearer of burdens will bear the burden of another…} [Quran 6:164] This verse means that no person shall be held accountable for the sins of another person that he did not commit. Indeed it is from the Justice of Allaah that a person does not bear the sins of another person which he did not commit himself.

Allaah also Says (what means): {… And every soul earns not [blame] except against itself…} [Quran 6:164]

Allaah further Says (what means): {Every person, for what he earned, is retained.} [Quran 52:21]

None of this contradicts what the questioner said about the son of Aadam (Adam)  may  Allaah  exalt  his  mention who murdered his brother and who will bear the sin of anyone who kills a person with no legal right until the Last Day. In fact, he bears that burden because he was the first person to murder and hence be the first to introduce the obnoxious sin of murder to humanity. This is why the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) , said: "Because he was the first to establish (unlawful) killing." [Al-Bukhari]

Had he not murdered his brother, people would not have known what murder was. He was the first one to show them this way of getting rid of another person. So, he deserves special punishment for the act of teaching others this awful sin.

Also, the woman who displays her charms outside her home is in fact the one who causes non-Mahram (marriageable) men to look at her. So she deserves punishment for that. Had she put on her Hijab and obeyed her Lord's Orders, she would have saved herself from the unwanted glances of men. So she is responsible for letting others look at her. By doing so, she commits a sin, and so do those who look at her.

Since Satan will be punished for making people go astray - although it is the people who commit sins themselves under no compulsion - then people are also punished for causing each other to go astray.

The great justice of Allaah and His great blessings are materialized, among other things, in His awarding the Muslim the reward of any good deed that he initiates and granting that person the same reward granted to anyone who does that deed without any reduction from the reward of the doer himself. The same rule applies to the person who initiates a bad tradition, he also gets its punishment and the same punishment is inflicted upon anyone who commits it.

Muslim  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him reported that the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) said: "Whoever, initiates a good deed in Islam gets its reward as well as the reward granted to anyone who does it after him without reducing the reward of the doer himself. And anyone who establishes a bad deed in Islam bears its burden as well as the burden of anyone who does it after him, without reducing anything from the doer's sin."

Allaah Knows best.

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