The True; The Keeper of His Word
That is Allah's promise. Allah does not break His promise. But most people do not know it. ( Surat ar-Rum, 30:6)
Allah created humanity and sent Messengers to enjoin good and forbid evil. He also sent Books to guide humanity to the straight path. The Qur'an, the last of these just Books, guides us from the darkness to the light, to the right path.
In the Qur'an, Allah makes promises to both believers and unbelievers. Unless He wills otherwise, unbelievers are promised a stressful life in this world and an eternal punishment in Hell. But because they have no faith in this promise, they assume that they will never be punished. Allah addresses these deluded people in the following terms:
They ask you to hasten the punishment. Allah will not break His promise… ( Surat al-Hajj, 22:47)
Meanwhile, Allah promises believers a blissful life both in this world and in the next, as the following verses state:
Allah has promised those of you who believe and do right actions that He will make them successors in the land, just as He made those before them successors; will firmly establish for them their religion, with which He is pleased; and give them, in place of their fear, security. “They worship Me, not associating anything with Me.” Any who do not believe after that, such people are deviators. ( Surat an-Nur, 24:55)
But as for those who believe and do right actions, We will admit them into gardens with rivers flowing under them, remaining in them timelessly, for ever and ever. Allah's promise is true. Whose speech could be truer than Allah's? ( Surat an-Nisa', 4:122)
The Words of your Lord are perfect in truthfulness and justice. No one can change His Words. He is the All-Hearing, the All-Knowing. ( Surat al-An‘am, 6:115)
Say: “Allah speaks the truth, so follow the religion of Ibrahim, a man of pure natural belief. He was not one of the idolaters.” (Surah Al ‘Imran, 3:95)
The Driver; He Who Drives to Hell
But We will drive the evildoers to Hell , like cattle to a watering hole. (Surah Maryam, 19:86)
Humanity was created to serve Allah and has been placed here to be tested. Allah meets all of our needs and has granted us various blessings. Despite this, however, some people forget the purpose of their existence, become ungrateful, and rebel against Allah. Such rebellion has to be punished, for Allah is infinitely just. In the Qur'an, He reveals the end of those who grow arrogant, as follows:
As was the case with the people of Pharaoh and those before them. They denied Our Signs, so Allah seized them for their wrong actions. Allah is fierce in retribution. Say to those who are unbelievers: “You will be overwhelmed and crowded into Hell. What an evil resting-place!” (Surah Al ‘Imran, 3:11-12)
Although granted countless opportunities and given many warnings to turn to the straight path, they insisted upon turning away and becoming arrogant. Thus, on the Day of Judgment,
...You will see the wrongdoers saying, when they see the punishment: “Is there no way back?” You will see them as they are exposed to it, abject in their abasement, glancing around them furtively. Those who believe will say: “Truly the losers are those who lose themselves and their families on the Day of Rising.” The wrongdoers are in an everlasting punishment. (Surah ash-Shura, 42:44-45)
This situation manifests Allah's infinite justice. In one verse, Allah relates that every person will receive whatever he or she deserves, as follows:
Allah does not wrong anyone by so much as the smallest speck. And if there is a good deed, Allah will multiply it and pay out an immense reward direct from Him. ( Surat an-Nisa', 4:40)
As a requisite of this superior justice, Allah will host believers in infinite gardens abounding in unprecedented blessings. Allah gives this good news to believers who devote their lives to our Lord:
Give the good news to those who believe and do right actions that they will have gardens with rivers flowing under them. When they are given fruit as provision, they will say: “This is what we were given before.” But they were only given a simulation of it. They will have spouses of perfect purity and will remain there timelessly, forever. ( Surat al-Baqara, 2:25)
The Artificer; The Maker
You will see the mountains you reckoned to be solid going past like clouds— the handiwork of Allah Who gives to everything its solidity. He is aware of what you do. ( Surat an-Naml, 27:88)
Every being, whether living or non-living, teems with signs of a superior wisdom and an infinite knowledge. No doubt, these manifest Allah's attribute of al-‘Aleem . They also have another very important feature: a very delicate artistry. This attribute manifests itself in the form of an extraordinary appearance, flawlessness, a delicate and unique artistry, harmony, and design.
For instance, we can see the human body's flawless design. All organs are placed in the most appropriate place. For instance, the places of the eyes and the heart, the latter of which is protected by the sternum, are entrusted with many divine purposes. The body's symmetry, which is designed according to the “golden ratio” used by painters, is also strikingly beautiful. Indeed, each person's eyes, nose, and mouth are put into their individual places with great delicacy.
In many living beings, Allah created certain details to manifest His attribute of as-Sani‘ . As a result, every living being is unique. A tropical bird's wings or a flower's petals are dominated by phosphorous colors, whereas a butterfly's wings contain several colors. Similarly, a reptile, a bird, and a marine animal are totally different from each other.
This infinite artistry is also visible in the plant world. As “And also the things of varying colors He has created for you in the land. There is certainly a Sign in that for people who pay heed” ( Surat an-Nahl, 16:13) tells us, Allah created millions of different plants and flowers with various odors, smell, colors, and symmetry. For example, an orchid has hundreds of different appearances and colors. Similarly, a rose has many colors of varying tones. Such uniqueness is a clear sign of His artistry.
Allah manifests this attribute by presenting all of these aesthetic living beings to humanity. He could have created just one type of every living being. But by creating many species, He has displayed an amazing artistry that mere words cannot describe with full justice. Moreover, the examples of His artistry are wherever we look and are perfect.
He is Allah—there is no deity but Him. He is the King, the Most Pure, the Perfect Peace , the Trustworthy, the Safeguarder, the Almighty, the Compeller, the Supremely Great. Glory be to Allah above all they associate with Him. ( Surat al-Hashr, 59:23)
Allah gave the good news of an eternal Paradise to His believing servants. Yet one point is often missed here: These servants are rewarded with a beautiful life not only in the Hereafter but in this world as well, as the following verse reveals:
What is with you runs out, but what is with Allah goes on forever. Those who were steadfast will be recompensed according to the best of what they did. Anyone who acts rightly, male or female, being a believer, We will give them a good life and will recompense them according to the best of what they did. ( Surat an-Nahl, 16:96-97)
No doubt, the blissful life in both worlds manifests Allah's attribute of as-Salam upon His faithful servants. A believer who is devoted to Allah and does good deeds to attain His good pleasure will return to His Lord “...well pleasing and well pleased” ( Surat al-Fajr, 89:28). Allah describes what such servants will find in the Hereafter, as follows:
And the garden will be brought close to the pious not far away: “This is what you were promised. It is for every careful penitent: those who fear the All-Merciful in the Unseen and come with a contrite heart. Enter it in peace. This is the Day of Timeless Eternity.” They will have there everything they want, and with Us there is still more. (Surah Qaf, 50:31-35)
Allah's attribute of as-Salam is also His greeting to those who enter Paradise . In Surah Ya Sin 36:58 Allah states: “‘Peace!' A word from a Merciful Lord.” This greeting is the greatest reward that believers will ever receive, for:
Such people will be repaid for their steadfastness with the Highest Paradise , where they will meet with welcome and with “Peace.” ( Surat al-Furqan, 25:75)
Certainly those who argue about the Signs of Allah without any authority having come to them have nothing in their hearts except pride, which they will never be able to vindicate. Therefore seek refuge with Allah. He is the All-Hearing , the All-Seeing. (Surah Ghafir, 40:56)
As well as seeing everything, Allah, Who is closer to us than our jugular veins, hears every noise in the universe. For example, He hears each noise made by all of the galaxies, planets, and celestial bodies; those made by the billions of invisible living beings living in the micro-universe, for He created them; and the noise made by a splitting seed, a flash of lightening, or a flying bird's wings. This fact is related in the following verse:
Say: “My Lord knows what is said in heaven and Earth. He is the All-Hearing, the All-Knowing.” ( Surat al-Anbiya', 21:4)
One sign of Allah's greatness and power is His hearing every noise made by all living and non-living beings. He hears—and answers—the prayers of all people who secretly turn to Him and call upon Him. Indeed, in another verse Allah states: “If My servants ask you about Me, I am near. I answer the call of the caller when he calls upon Me...” ( Surat al-Baqara, 2:186). This is quite easy for Allah, for He is everywhere at the same moment.
In addition, Allah also hears the rebels' most delicate plots, for He encompasses all things in His knowledge. No person has ever uttered a single word without Him knowing it. They will be confronted by all of their words in the Hereafter, as the Qur'an reveals:
Say: “Do you worship, besides Allah, something that has no power to harm or help you when Allah is the All-Hearing, the All-Knowing?” ( Surat al-Ma'ida, 5:76)
His Lord replied to him and turned away from him their female guile and deviousness. He is the One Who Hears, the One Who Knows. (Surah Yusuf, 12:34)
The Affectionate; The Healer
And when I am ill, it is He Who heals me . ( Surat ash-Shu‘ara', 26:80)
Allah uses illness to force people to realize just how feeble they are and how much help they really need. Thus, the hundreds of diseases in our world are created for both bodily and spiritual purposes. For example, they are signs of a purposeful and superior creation and of His power, for how else can one explain the existence of microscopic viruses?
Only Allah can remove an illness, for He is the One Who created it. As a manifestation of ash-Shafee , Allah removes a disease whenever He wills. If He does not will this, no doctor, advanced technology, or innovative medication can help or cure the patient, for all medicine is only means of recovery. Each illness is sent so that we may ponder upon it, eventually see our Lord's infinite power next to our own feebleness, and seek His help whenever we are in distress. Believers have to be aware that Allah is their only guardian and helper.
The Qur'an praises Prophet Ayyub (as) for his submission to Allah. The moral excellence, patience, and trust he displayed in the face of devastating distress has become an example for all believers. The related verse is as follows:
And Ayyub, when he called out to his Lord: “Great harm has afflicted me, and You are the Most Merciful of the merciful.” ( Surat al-Anbiya', 21:83)
Allah answered his call and removed his distress, and Prophet Ayyub (as) earned the rewards of being patient and turning solely to Allah.
Or have they adopted intercessors besides Allah? Say: “Even though they do not control a thing and have no awareness?” Say: “ Intercession is entirely Allah's affair . The kingdom of the heavens and Earth is His. Then you will be returned to Him.” ( Surat az-Zumar, 39:43-44)
Those who have faith in Allah and yet associate partners with Him assume that these partners will intercede for them on the Day of Judgment. According to their belief, such “guardians” will take responsibility for their followers or purify them. And so they undertake strenuous efforts to earn their approval and constantly think of them. But this is no more than a huge delusion, for Allah states that He will be the only Protector on the Day of Judgment, as follows:
Abandon those who have turned their religion into a game and a diversion, who have been deluded by the life of the world. Remind [them] by it [the Qur'an], lest a person is delivered up to destruction for what he has earned with no protector or intercessor besides Allah. Were he to offer every kind of compensation, it would not be accepted from him... ( Surat al-An‘am, 6:70)
On that Day, no one will befriend another or bear someone's sins. As Allah informs us, only those who please Him will be allowed to intercede, and this person will surely say the truth. Unbelievers will find no guardian or intercessor on that Day, and no support, protection, or intercession, for Allah is the only Guardian and Intercessor:
Allah created the heavens and Earth and everything between them in six days, and then established Himself firmly upon the Throne. You have no protector or intercessor apart from Him. So will you not pay heed? ( Surat as-Sajda, 32:4)
Is he whose breast is opened to Islam , and who is therefore illuminated by his Lord…? Woe to those whose hearts are hardened against the remembrance of Allah! Such people are clearly misguided. ( Surat az-Zumar, 39:22)
The existence of Allah and the Hereafter is obvious. Despite this, however, the majority of people have no faith. A person attains true faith only when Allah “opens one's breast to Islam.” This acquisition of faith is the greatest blessing from Allah, for if Allah had no mercy and favor upon His sincere servants, none of them would attain salvation. While creating humanity, Allah gave every soul a lower self that would tempt each man and woman toward evil. However, He also ensured that His sincere servants could attain the straight path by both overcoming and avoiding such temptations.
This right path, which is attained by following one's conscience, is a blessing granted to sincere believers. As Allah informs us:
... However, Allah has given you love of faith and made it pleasing to your hearts, and has made disbelief, deviance, and disobedience hateful to you. People such as these are rightly guided. It is a great favor from Allah and a blessing. ( Surat al-Hujurat, 49:7-8)
Those who forget how they were created and insist on unbelief, despite all of the signs surrounding them, who follow the dictates of their lower selves and do not exercise their conscience, will experience the following:
As for those who are unbelievers, it makes no difference to them whether you warn them or do not warn them; they will not believe. Allah has sealed up their hearts and hearing, and over their eyes is a blindfold. They will have a terrible punishment. ( Surat al-Baqara, 2:6-7)
Have you seen him who takes his whims and desires to be his deity—whom Allah has misguided knowingly, sealing up his hearing and his heart and placing a blindfold over his eyes? Who, then, will guide him after Allah? So will you not pay heed? ( Surat al-Jathiya, 45:23)
Say: “ Allah is a sufficient witness between me and you. He is certainly aware of and sees His servants.” ( Surat al-Isra', 17:96)
Allah has no beginning and no end, is the sole absolute Being, and is not bound by such human concepts as time or space. Therefore, everything that ever happens, regardless of whether it happened in the past, the present, or the future, are the same in—and are fully known to—His Sight.
He knows everything, whether it is done in secret or in public, in darkness or in light, while alone or while in a crowd. Being ignorant, people assume that what they do at night might conceal their sins and hide them as well. But such hopes are futile, for the Qur'an states:
Do you not see that Allah knows what is in the heavens and on Earth? Three men cannot confer together secretly without Him being the fourth, or five without Him being the sixth, or fewer than that or more without Him being with them wherever they are. Then He will inform them on the Day of Rising of what they did. Allah has knowledge of all things. ( Surat al-Mujadala, 58:7)
Allah is fully knowledgeable of everyone's intentions, thoughts, and deeds at every one moment. Each of us will be called to account for all of these on the Day of Judgment. People who deny these truths will understand their mistake on the Day of Judgment. As “On the Day Allah raises up all of them together, He will inform them of what they did. Allah has recorded it while they have forgotten it. Allah is a Witness of all things” ( Surat al-Mujadala, 58:6) maintains, in the Hereafter we will be repaid for each one of our deeds:
You do not engage in any matter, recite any of the Qur'an, or do any action without Our witnessing you while you are occupied with it. Not even the smallest speck eludes your Lord, either on Earth or in heaven. Nor is there anything smaller than that, or larger, which is not in a Clear Book. (Surah Yunus, 10:61)
But Allah bears witness to what He has sent down to you. He has sent it down with His knowledge. The angels bear witness as well. And Allah suffices as a Witness. ( Surat an-Nisa', 4:166)
Whether We show you something of what We have promised them or take you back to Us, they will still return to Us. Then Allah will be witness against what they are doing. (Surah Yunus, 10:46)
We will show them Our Signs on the horizon and within themselves until it is clear to them that it is the truth. Is it not enough for your Lord that He is a witness of everything? (Surah Fussilat, 41:53)
The Appreciative; He Who Is Responsive to Gratitude
If you make a generous loan to Allah He will multiply it for you and forgive you. Allah is most Ready to appreciate [service], Most Clement. ( Surat at-Taghabun, 64:17)
Allah gives countless blessings to us and only asks each of us to be a grateful servant. Allah draws our attention to the importance of being grateful in Surah Ibrahim 14:7: " ...And when your Lord announced: 'If you are grateful, I will certainly give you increase; but if you are ungrateful, My punishment is severe.'”
One who does not give thanks for all of these blessings will be repaid in the Hereafter, for Allah's infinite justice requires this. However, Allah is very compassionate toward His servants, as the Qur'an states:
Allah does not wrong anyone by so much as the smallest speck. And if there is a good deed, Allah will multiply it and pay out an immense reward direct from Him. ( Surat an-Nisa,' 4:40)
Whoever does a good deed for Allah's cause will be rewarded with what is better on the Day of Judgment.
That is the good news that Allah gives to His servants who believe and do right actions. Say: “I do not ask you for any wage for this—except for you to love your near of kin. If anyone does a good action, We will increase the good of it for him. Allah is Ever-Forgiving, Ever-Thankful.” ( Surat ash-Shura, 42:23)
That He will pay them their wages in full and give them more from His unbounded favor. He is Ever-Forgiving, Ever-Thankful. (Surah Fatir, 35:30)
They will say: “Praise be to Allah, Who has removed all sadness from us. Truly our Lord is Ever-Forgiving, Ever-Thankful.” (Surah Fatir, 35:34)
The Acceptor of Repentance
Except for those who repent, put things right, and make things clear. I turn toward them. I am the Ever-Returning , the Most Merciful. ( Surat al-Baqara, 2:160)
As stated earlier, humanity was created ignorant and ungrateful, and therefore is vulnerable to sins, mistakes, and weaknesses. This aside, Satan constantly tempts people and strives to plant vain desires and deviance in them. Yet, no matter how great one's mistakes and sins are, there is always a way out: sincere repentance and His ensuing forgiveness. For this reason, we should never lose hope, regardless of what we have done. In the Qur'an, Allah states:
Say: “My servants, you who have transgressed against yourselves, do not despair of the mercy of Allah. Truly Allah forgives all wrong actions. He is the Ever-Forgiving, the Most Merciful.” ( Surat az-Zumar, 39:53)
Meanwhile, there is a very important point we need to keep in mind:
Allah only accepts the repentance of those who do evil in ignorance and then quickly repent after doing it. Allah turns toward such people. Allah is All-Knowing, All-Wise. There is no repentance for people who persist in doing evil until death comes to them and who then say: “Now I repent,” nor for people who die as unbelievers. We have prepared for them a painful punishment. ( Surat an-Nisa', 4:17-18)
Clearly, Allah accepts the repentance of His sincere servants, for their regret and commitment to abandon their sinful behavior is real. Even clearer is the fact that the death-bed repentance of an unbeliever is meaningless. The Qur'an gives the example of the Pharaoh's insincere repentance:
We brought the tribe of Israel across the sea, and Pharaoh and his troops pursued them out of tyranny and enmity. Then, when he was on the point of drowning, he said: “I believe that there is no deity but Him in whom the tribe of Israel believe. I am one of the Muslims.” What, now! When previously you rebelled and were one of the corrupters? (Surah Yunus, 10:90-91)
And also toward the three who were left behind, so that when the land became narrow for them, for all its great breadth, and their own selves became constricted for them and they realized that there was no refuge from Allah except in Him, He turned to them so that they might turn to Him. Allah is the Ever-Returning, the Most Merciful. ( Surat at-Tawba, 9:118)
Were it not for Allah's favor to you and His mercy … and that Allah is Ever-Returning, All-Wise. ( Surat an-Nur, 24:10)
Your God is One God. There is no god but Him, the All-Merciful, the Most Merciful. ( Surat al-Baqara, 2:163)
For centuries, people who have failed to grasp Allah's greatness have worshipped what they considered to be “superior” and “powerful” beings, such as the Sun or stars. Furthermore, despite all their feebleness, some people even dared to declare themselves as deities. In the Qur'an, Allah gives the example of a man who argued with Prophet Ibrahim (as) about Allah's unity and power. Prophet Ibrahim (as) responded in the following terms:
What about the one who argued with Ibrahim about his Lord, on the basis that Allah had given him sovereignty? Ibrahim said: “My Lord gives life and causes to die.” He said: “I too give life and cause to die.” Ibrahim said; “Allah makes the Sun come from the East. Make it come from the West.” And the one who was an unbeliever was dumbfounded. Allah does not guide wrongdoing people. ( Surat al-Baqara, 2:258)
Setting up any other deity with Allah is not unique to previous peoples, for we see it even in our own time. While modern people do not worship the Sun, particular stars, or similar items, they worship people who are just as helpless as themselves or such concepts as beauty, wealth, and power. They devote their lives to acquiring wealth and never once wonder if Allah is pleased with them. They consider people, other beings, or particular objects as equal to Allah and so clearly associate partners with Him.
Given that Allah is the Creator, no one can make the Sun rise from the West, stop the universe from expanding, hold the heavens and Earth, or create a human being from nothing. Allah is the only God, for nothing that exists can be equal to the Creator. The Qur'an describes the weakness of those who associate partners with Allah, as follows:
O mankind! An example has been made, so listen carefully. Those whom you call upon besides Allah cannot create a single fly, even if they were to join together to do it. And if a fly steals something from them, they cannot get it back. How feeble are both the seeker and the sought! ( Surat al-Hajj, 22:73)
... Or have they assigned partners to Allah who create as He creates, so that all creating seems the same to them? Say: “Allah is the Creator of everything. He is the One, the All-Conquering.”( Surat ar-Ra‘d, 13:16)
... The Messiah, ‘Isa son of Maryam, was only the Messenger of Allah and His Word, which He cast into Maryam, and a Spirit from Him. So believe in Allah and His Messengers. Do not say: “Three.” It is better that you stop. Allah is only One God. He is too Glorious to have a son! Everything in the heavens and in Earth belongs to Him. Allah suffices as a Guardian. ( Surat an-Nisa', 4:171)
How many cities We have destroyed that lived in insolent ingratitude! There are their houses, never again inhabited after them, except a little. It was We Who were their Heir. ( Surat al-Qasas, 28:58)
Throughout their lives, such people strive to accumulate more wealth. Some people are so committed to this end that this goal takes over their lives and leaves them no time to wonder why they exist. However, there is one fact these people disregard:
Say: “Shall I inform you of the greatest losers in their actions? People whose efforts in the life of the world are misguided while they suppose that they are doing good.” ( Surat al-Kahf, 18:103-04)
Indeed, until their last breath, they strive for a vain purpose. Yet one day, at a totally unexpected moment, they will face the angels of death. Wrapped in a simple shroud, these people, who were widely admired because of their wealth, will be buried in the ground and thus leave everything behind. All they can take with them into their graves is their naked body, their fear, and their closeness to Allah.
Allah is the sole Inheritor of Earth, and His sincere servants are made wealthy by His favor. As we mentioned above, all wealth, status, and respect enjoyed in this world is temporary. Allah, Who grants all of these blessings, takes each person's soul whenever He wills. The Qur'an reveals how each person will be brought before Allah's presence:
We give life and cause to die, and We are the Inheritor. ( Surat al-Hijr, 15:23)
And Zakariyya, when he called out to his Lord: “My Lord, do not leave me on my own, though You are the Best of Inheritors.” ( Surat al-Anbiya', 21:89)
The All-Embracing; The Boundless
O You who believe! If any of you renounce your religion, Allah will bring forward a people whom He loves and who love Him, humble to the believers, fierce to the unbelievers, who strive in the Way of Allah and do not fear the blame of any censurer. That is the unbounded favor of Allah, which He gives to whoever He wills. Allah is Boundless, All-Knowing. ( Surat al-Ma'ida, 5:54)
Allah encompasses all universes. As the Creator of everything Who is not bound by place, He is above all places. In many societies, people commonly believe that Allah resides in the heavens. Thus, while calling upon him, they turn their faces to the heavens. The fact is, however, that “Both East and West belong to Allah, so wherever you turn, the Face of Allah is there. Allah is All-Encompassing, All-Knowing.” ( Surat al-Baqara, 2:115)
Allah informs us that He is the Lord of the heavens and Earth. Given this, He clearly settled Himself everywhere and owns everything that exists. His blessings never end, His mercy is boundless, His forgiveness is vast, and His mercy and compassion are infinite. Allah's attribute of al-Wasi manifests itself especially on believers. As His mercy and compassion are vast, He encompasses His faithful servants with His mercy and protects them. For instance, some unbelievers seek to harm religion by imposing hardships, such as by saying, “... Do not spend on those who are with the Messenger of Allah, so that they may go away...” ( Surat al-Munafiqun, 63:7). But all of these efforts are futile, for Allah gives His unbounded mercy and wealth to whomever He wills, for He owns the treasures of the heavens and Earth. One verse mentions that He is All-Encompassing:
[A group of the People of the Book say,] “Do not trust anyone, except for those who follow your religion.” Say: “Allah's guidance is true guidance. But you think it is impossible for anyone to be given the same as you were given, or to argue with you before your Lord.” Say: “All favor is in Allah's Hand, and He gives it to whoever He wills. Allah is All-Encompassing, All-Knowing.” (Surah Al ‘Imran, 3:73)
He is the Ever-Forgiving, the All-Loving . ( Surat al-Buruj, 85:14)
Those people who understand that Allah created humanity to serve Him remain sincere to Him until they die, while others deny His existence. Allah is very close to His loyal servants. He hears and answers their prayers, is with them whenever they encounter a difficulty, and supports them at every stage of their lives.
One of the greatest blessings that people may attain in this life is Allah's love and friendship. Allah's beloved servants lead honorable and distinguished lives, and their moral perfection always earns great admiration and appreciation. He admits His beloved servants into His mercy and lets them enter Paradise . Prophets and sincere believers are very valuable people who have earned Allah's love, love Allah, and lead their lives only to earn His good pleasure.
Ask your Lord for forgiveness, and then repent to Him. My Lord is Most Merciful, Most Loving. (Surah Hud, 11:90)
Or do they possess the treasuries of your Lord's mercy, the Almighty, the Ever-Giving? (Surah Sad, 38:9)
Allah promised a life of infinite happiness in Paradise , which starts here in this world, for He also promised a beautiful life in this world. This is why sincere believers see no limits when asking their Lord to meet their needs. They can ask their Lord for anything that will draw them nearer to Him. Allah answers these calls as He wills, and His answer is always the best. One example is Prophet Sulayman's (as) prayer: “Truly do I love the love of good, with a view to the glory of my Lord” (Surah Sad, 38:32) and continued:
He said: “My Lord, forgive me and give me a kingdom the like of which will never be granted to anyone after me. Truly You are the Ever-Giving.” (Surah Sad, 38:35)
Prophet Sulayman (as) prayed for such a kingdom because he knew that Allah rewards His sincere servants both in this world and in the Hereafter. One verse reads:
Our Lord, do not make our hearts swerve aside after You have guided us. And give us mercy from You. You are the Ever-Giving. (Surah Al ‘Imran, 3:8)
They have the word “obedience” on their tongues, but when they leave your presence, a group of them spend the night plotting to do other than what you say. Allah is recording their nocturnal plotting. So let them be and put your trust in Allah. Allah suffices as a Guardian. ( Surat an-Nisa', 4:81)
Allah wants His sincere and faithful servants to trust Him in every circumstance. Indeed, all Prophets encountered many difficulties and much enmity while spreading Allah's message within their unbelieving communities. And yet they always maintained their brave and resolute attitude for, seeking only Allah's good pleasure, they took refuge in Allah.
Allah informs us that He helps those who help His religion. There will always be people who fight believers and follow Satan. They may hatch plots to harm believers and strive to break their zeal with offensive words and slanders. Yet they can never attain their goals, for their plans are feeble next to Allah's infinite power and wisdom. Allah, Who knows and sees all the details of every plot, helps the patient and resolute believers who befriend Him and enables them to attain the best. This metaphysical phenomenon is incomprehensible to unbelievers. In this way, believers who trust in Allah attain great spiritual and physical strength. Allah mentions this in the following verses:
Those who submit themselves completely to Allah and do good have grasped the Firmest Handhold. The end result of all affairs is with Allah. (Surah Luqman, 31:22)
Those to whom people said: “The people have gathered against you, so fear them.” But that merely increased their faith, and they said: “Allah is enough for us and the Best of Guardians.” (Surah Al ‘Imran, 3:173)
Taking Allah as their guardian has always resulted in their victory. The related verses read:
So they returned with blessings and bounty from Allah, and no evil touched them. They pursued the pleasure of Allah. Allah's favor is indeed immense. (Surah Al ‘Imran, 3:174)
Lord of the East and West—there is no deity but Him—so take Him as your Guardian. ( Surat al-Muzzammil, 73:9)
Say: “Nothing can happen to us except what Allah has ordained for us. He is Our Master. It is in Allah that the believers should put their trust.” ( Surat at-Tawba, 9:51)
Allah is the Protector of those who believe. He brings them out of the darkness and into the light. But those who do not believe have false deities as protectors. They take them from the light into the darkness. Those are the Companions of the Fire remaining in it timelessly, forever. ( Surat al-Baqara, 2:257)
Both in this world and in the next, people have only one real friend. This friend never abandons them, is next to them, and helps them in the face of every difficulty. From the day they are born until they die, He is always with them and protects them against their enemies. He is more reliable than anyone else, and always rewards them without expecting anything in return. This friend, of course, is our Lord, the believers' most intimate friend, Who purifies all those who place their trust in Him and promise them a distinguished life here and eternal wealth in the Hereafter.
Throughout their lives, people seek someone more powerful or wealthier upon whom they can rely in all circumstances. Yet while seeking such people, they totally forget our All-Mighty Lord, Who created them and meets all of their needs. They take Satan, who only leads them toward sin and hinders them from attaining Paradise , as their friend. This is the beginning of a gloomy world.
People who have faith and sincere faith in Allah, on the other hand, enjoy a good and honorable life. In this life, there is no room for failure, because Allah grants victory to believers as long as they remain committed to their religion and their words. Meanwhile, the actual reward is waiting for them in the Hereafter. Allah is the sole real protector of believers both in this world and beyond. His attribute of al-Walee is described in the following verses:
Allah knows best who your enemies are. Allah suffices as a Protector; Allah suffices as a Helper. ( Surat an-Nisa', 4:45)
And remember when two of your clans were on the point of losing heart and Allah was their Protector. Let the believers put their trust in Allah. (Surah Al ‘Imran, 3:122)
It is He Who sends down abundant rain, after they have lost all hope, and unfolds His mercy. He is the Protector, the Praiseworthy. ( Surat ash-Shura, 42:28)
DHU AL-JALAL WA AL-IKRAM
Master of Majesty and Generosity
Blessed be the name of your Lord, Master of Majesty and Generosity. ( Surat ar-Rahman, 55:78)
People enjoy countless blessings, for Allah has adorned this world with many details that are pleasing to His servants. However, Allah will show His infinite generosity in Paradise .
One of the most telling attributes of the Paradise is that believers will have all that their hearts desire, without any limit. There will be gardens with rivers flowing underneath and cool, refreshing shade. By the grace of Allah, devout believers will be amid shaded gardens with spreading branched, flowing springs, and whatever kind of fruit and meat they desire. In addition, they will have high-ceilinged halls with rivers flowing underneath, where they will recline on couches ranged in rows and take pleasure from the surrounding beauty. Circulating among them will be youths like hidden pearls, passing among them vessels of silver and goblets of pure crystal. Meanwhile, “... they will be adorned with gold bracelets and pearls, and where their clothing will be of silk.” ( Surat al-Hajj, 22:23)
No doubt, the Qur'an's descriptions of Paradise are far more elaborate than what we could convey above. The verses below give a detailed description of Allah's infinite generosity in Paradise :
… they will have there all that their hearts desire and their eyes find delight in. You will remain in it timelessly, forever. ( Surat az-Zukhruf, 43:71)
Seeing them, you see delight and a great kingdom. ( Surat al-Insan, 76:20)
The Evident; The Outward
He is the First and the Last, the Outward and the Inward. He has knowledge of all things. ( Surat al-Hadid, 57:3)
The signs of Allah's existence, which are spread throughout the universe, are evident for all people of understanding. Grasping Allah's existence demands no more than a careful scrutiny into one's surroundings, for the universe abounds with signs of creation. From the simplest to the most complex ones, all systems reveal a network of miracles that present even more mysteries as one makes an in-depth analysis. In the Qur'an, Allah gives the following examples of these miracles:
Have they not looked at the sky above them: how We structured it and made it beautiful, and how there are no fissures in it? And Earth: how We stretched it out and cast firmly embedded mountains onto it and caused luxuriant plants of every kind to grow in it? (Surah Qaf, 50:6-7)
Have they not looked at the birds above them, with wings outspread and folded back? Nothing holds them up but the All-Merciful. He sees all things. ( Surat al-Mulk, 67:19)
Allah splits the seed and kernel. He brings forth the living from the dead, and produces the dead out of the living. That is Allah, so how are you deluded? He splits the sky at dawn, and appoints the night as a time of stillness and the Sun and the Moon as a means of reckoning. That is what the Almighty, the All-Knowing has ordained. He has appointed the stars for you so you might be guided by them in the darkness of the land and sea. We have made the Signs clear for people who have knowledge. ( Surat al-An‘am, 6:95-97)
No doubt, these are just a few examples. Elsewhere, Allah reminds His servants of His existence through many examples. One of their most telling attributes is that they ponder over everything they see and gradually comprehend Allah's existence and greatness. As we mentioned above, each detail in our universe makes us feel that we were created.
People of intelligence who recognize Allah's greatness and power surely feel an inner awe toward our Creator, Who will call each one of them to account for their deeds in the Hereafter. Therefore, they spend their lives striving to earn His good pleasure. In one verse, Allah says the following:
Those who remember Allah, standing, sitting, and lying on their sides, and reflect on the creation of the heavens and Earth: “Our Lord, You have not created this for nothing. Glory be to You! So safeguard us from the punishment of the Fire.” (Surah Al ‘Imran, 3:191)