What the Qur'an teaches: The division of mankind
28 Oct 2010 09:31 GMT
 
Published: Oct 28, 2010 23:26 Updated: Oct 28, 2010 23:26 In the name of God, the Lord of Grace, the Ever Merciful SO We have revealed to you a discourse in the Arabic tongue in order that you may warn the Mother City and all who dwell around it; that you may forewarn them of the Day of the Gathering, of which there is no doubt, when some shall be in paradise and some in the blazing fire. Had God so willed, He could have made them all one single community, but He admits to His grace whoever He will, whereas the wrongdoers will have no one to protect them and no one to support them. Have they chosen protectors other than Him? God alone is the Protector of all; He is the One who gives life to the dead; and He has power over all things. (Consultation, Al-Shoora: 42: 7-9)

THE Qur’an was revealed in Arabic to warn the Mother City, i.e. Makkah, and its surrounding area. When the Arabian Peninsula moved out of ignorance into Islam and became totally Muslim, it carried the banner of Islam, moving with it to the East and to the West. These Muslims presented Islam and the human system based on it to the world, since, by nature, this message is addressed to all humanity. They were the best and most suitable people to advocate it, stemming as it did from the most suitable place for its birth and growth.

It was by God’s design that the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) lived until Arabia, with all its population, embraced Islam. The land chosen to be the cradle of Islam now permanently adopted the full colors of the new faith. Likewise, the language to express it and deliver it to the world was clearly chosen. Arabic had by that time achieved full maturity so as to be most suitable for delivering God’s message to all corners of the world. Had Arabic been a deficient or immature language, it would not have been able to embody the message in the first place, or to deliver it to people outside Arabia. In short, the language, the people and the environment were all the best suited for this great universal event. Thus, wherever we look in our attempt to understand God’s purpose, wisdom and choice, we find a long list of positive factors converging together to provide the new message with the conditions most suited for its welcome. This confirms God’s statement: “God knows best whom to entrust with His message.” (6: 124)

“So We have revealed to you a discourse in the Arabic tongue in order that you may warn the Mother City and all who dwell around it; that you may forewarn them of the Day of the Gathering, of which there is no doubt, when some shall be in paradise and some in the blazing fire.” The hardest, most fundamental and often repeated warning in the Qur’an is that concerning the Day of Gathering, when God will gather together all creatures from all generations and places, prior to dividing them into two groups according to what they did during their life on earth, the place where people choose what to do: “some shall be in paradise and some in the blazing fire.”

“Had God so willed, He could have made them all one single community, but He admits to His grace whoever He will, whereas the wrongdoers will have no one to protect them and no one to support them.” God could, if He wished, create people in a different form so as to make their behavior and actions uniform. Had He done so, their end would have been the same and they would all go either to heaven or to hell. However, in His limitless glory, God created man for a purpose, assigning to him the task of building human life on earth. In order for this task to be accomplished He made it necessary for man to have special qualities distinguishing him from both angels and devils, as also from all types of creation with a nature of singular direction. In this respect, then, He gave man qualities and abilities which make some people lean toward guidance, light and good action, while others lean toward error, darkness and evil action. Each group follows one of these two susceptibilities inherent in human nature, leading them to the end determined for the type of action they choose: “some shall be in paradise and some in the blazing fire.” Thus God will “admit to His grace whoever He will, whereas the wrongdoers will have no one to protect them and no one to support them.” His decisions are based on His knowledge of the conditions of both parties and whether they follow guidance and thus deserve His grace or go astray and thus deserve His punishment.

It has already been mentioned that some people take protectors for themselves other than God. Now, the surah makes it clear that “the wrongdoers will have no one to protect them and no one to support them.” The fact is that their alleged protectors do not exist.

Again, the surah disapprovingly asks: “Have they chosen protectors other than Him?” It follows this rhetorical question with a statement making it clear that God is the only protector who is able to do everything. His power is clearly seen in the fact that He brings the dead back to life. This is indeed the action which shows His unique power at its most splendid: “God alone is the Protector of all; He is the One who gives life to the dead.” His power is then stated to be total and to extend over all beings, with no limits whatsoever: “He has power over all things.” ¬



-- Arab News


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