Thursday 21 November 2019

Scholars' Viewpoint: Why can't all good people go to Heaven?

If you ask me which is one question that is asked by most of the non-Muslims around the world, I would say: Why can't all good people go to heaven?

Yes, after reading accounts of non-Muslims' perception about Islam, they are generally seem found clueless about the fate of pious and good doers non-Muslims, for God is the Ultimate Mercy and Oft Forgiving. So, If Allah is epitome of Mercy, how is it that He would allow only pious Muslims to enter Jannah / Paradise and filter out pious non-Muslims out of it.

As far my scant knowledge about Islam is concerned, I know that on the Day of Judgment, each and every individual be presented personally in front of Allah and his/her dossier read out to him and it will be none other than Allah alone who would decide the fate of that person, whether Muslim or Non-Muslim. So, the final judgment rests with Allah and no one else, unless He on that day allows someone to intercede and plead for him.

Thus, it is not for us to pass any fatwa or proclamation as to who would enter Jannah and would not. Even the Prophet of Allah would spend almost the entire nights seeking forgiveness for himself and his ummat for even he, the most blessed and revered of all prophets ever, did not know of his forgiveness.

We cannot unanimously declare that all non-Muslims or followers of other faiths will necessarily go to Hell, as some Muslim scholars do claim so. Professor Javed Ahmad Ghamidi, a Pakistani Muslim theologian, Quran scholar, Islamic modernist, exegete and educationist is of the opinion that "We only say that Islam is the last and the true religion of God. It is incumbent upon the people to ponder over its teachings and decide to accept or reject it on the basis of arguments. Still, however, there could be people who are not convinced of its veracity for many reasons. God will accept their excuse if found valid. Nothing is hidden from God. Nobody can deceive him."

However, Professor Ghamidi adds, we should be mindful of one important aspect related to our beliefs about existence of One True God. The basis thing is the belief in one God. Other beliefs come under it and are secondary in nature. God has clearly stated that those who followed other religions including Judaism, Christianity and others truly and did good deeds will be rewarded. He has also made it clear that He would not forgive polytheism. Any other sin He may forgive.

إِنَّ اللّهَ لاَ يَغْفِرُ أَن يُشْرَكَ بِهِ وَيَغْفِرُ مَا دُونَ ذَلِكَ لِمَن يَشَاء وَمَن يُشْرِكْ بِاللّهِ فَقَدِ افْتَرَى إِثْمًا عَظِيمًا

Allah is not going to forgive that partners should be set up with Him; but He forgives anything else, to whom He pleases; to set up partners with Allah is to devise a sin most heinous indeed. (4:48)

The above said verse, which is one of the many such like verses in the Qur'an, clearly states that Allah may forgive anyone no matter how heavy the load of one's sins may be, but He would not forgive the one who had denied His existence or held other (s) as His associates or revered a human at par with One True God.

In order to know what scholars' view point is on the subject, I came across a very rationale and convincing reply by Nouman Ali Khan, who, born to a Pakistani family, is an American Muslim speaker and Arabic instructor who founded the Bayyinah Institute for Arabic and Qur’anic Studies, after serving as an instructor of Arabic at Nassau Community College. He has been named one of the 500 most influential Muslims in the world by the Royal Islamic Strategic Studies Centre of Jordan.

Watch Nouman Ali Khan's viewpoint on the issue:

وَمَا عَلَيۡنَاۤ اِلَّا الۡبَلٰغُ الۡمُبِيۡنُ‏ 
(36:17) and our duty is no more than to clearly convey the Message.”
That is our duty to convey only to you the message that Allah has entrusted us with. Then it is for you to accept it or reject it. We have not been made responsible for making you accept it forcibly, and if you do not accept it, we shall not be seized in consequence of your disbelief, you will yourselves be answerable for your actions on Day of Resurrection.

May Allāh (سبحانه و تعالى‎) help us understand Qur'ān and help us to act upon the commandments of Allah contained therein. May Allah help us to be like the ones He loves and let our lives be lived helping others and not making others' lives miserable or unlivable. May all our wrong doings, whether intentional or unintentional, be forgiven before the angel of death knocks on our door. 

May Allah forgive me if my posts ever imply a piety far greater than I possess. I am most in need of guidance.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the video above are those of the scholar concerned. We have shared this view as added information in better understanding of Islam. The reader may or may not agree with the view owing to their own perception. If anyone differs with the material contained in this post, one may consult the references and their authors.  If someone has more material about the subject, he/she is most welcome to share in the comments box to make the post all encompassing.

Photo | References: | 1 | 

For more Scholarly views and videos, please read our reference page: Scholars' Viewpoint on Important Issues Related to Islam.

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