Tuesday 5 April 2022

The Ultimate Divine Justice (Selected verses from Qur'an)

Allah made man his assistant non earth to uphold justice as directed at many a places in the Qur'an. Yet despite very clear Divine Commandments we see that  human judgment is generally subjective and flawed, and many a influential man evade j by justice due to the sheer weight of their position and authority.  Human justice necessarily falls short of divine justice both in the range of obligations enforced and the accuracy of determinations concerning whether those obligations have been violated.

For such people in particular and the rest in general, Allah cautions them that while they may evade justice and true justice is denied to the meek and poor in this world, there would come a day when worldly positions and authority will mean nothing and every man will be adjudged by his account book and true justice will be enforced. Then those who evaded justice or denied justice to the impeccant.

Today, we have selected the 47th verse of Surah 21. Al-Anbiyaa (The Prophetes), in which Allah promises man that on the Day of Judgement none shall be wronged and every soul will be rewarded or awarded punishment equal to his good or bad deeds in the worldly life.

وَنَضَعُ الۡمَوَازِيۡنَ الۡقِسۡطَ لِيَوۡمِ الۡقِيٰمَةِ فَلَا تُظۡلَمُ نَـفۡسٌ شَيۡـئًـا​ ؕ وَاِنۡ كَانَ مِثۡقَالَ حَبَّةٍ مِّنۡ خَرۡدَلٍ اَتَيۡنَا بِهَا​ ؕ وَكَفٰى بِنَا حٰسِبِيۡنَ‏ 
(21:47) On the Day of Resurrection, We will set up just and accurate balances so that no one will be wronged in the least in anyway; even if it be an act equal in weight to a grain of mustard seed, We will bring it forth (to be weighed) and We suffice for reckoning.
It is difficult for us to understand the exact nature of the "Balance". Anyhow it is clear that the "Balance" will weigh accurately all the human moral deeds instead of material things, and will help judge whether a man is virtuous or wicked and how much. The Qur'an has used this word to make mankind understand that every deed, good or bad, will be weighed and judged according to merit.

The same theme is repeated in verses 8-9 of Surah Al Aaraf which means:
This means that when the Balance is fixed on the Day of Judgement, 'truth' and weight will be identical. The more truth one has to one's credit, the more truth one has to one's credit, the more the weight in one's scale; and vice versa. One will be judged solely on the basis of this weight. In other words, no consideration other than truth will enter into the calculation. A life of falsehood, however long it lasted, and however full of worldly achievements, will carry no weight at all. Weighed in the Balance, the devotees of falsehood will discover that their life-long deeds do not even weigh so much as a birds feather. The same point has been expatiated upon in (al-Kahf 18:103-5) : 'Shall We tell you of those who are greatest losers in respect of their deeds? It is those whose efforts have been wasted in this life while they kept believing that they were acquiring good by their deeds. they are those who deny the Signs of their Lord and the fact of their having to meet Him (in the Hereafter). So their works are in vain and we shall attach no weight to them on the Day of Judgement.'
Tafsir Ibn-Kathir
(And We shall set up Balances of justice on the Day of Resurrection, then none will be dealt with unjustly in anything.) meaning, "We shall set up the Balances of justice on the Day of Resurrection.'' The majority of scholars state that it is one Balance, and the plural form is used here to reflect the large number of deeds which will be weighed therein.

(then none will be dealt with unjustly in anything. And if there be the weight of a mustard seed, We will bring it. And sufficient are We to take account.) This is like the Ayat:
  • (and your Lord treats no one with injustice) [18:49]
  • (Surely, Allah wrongs not even of the weight of speck of dust, but if there is any good, He doubles it, and gives from Him a great reward.) [4:40]
  • ("O my son! If it be equal to the weight of a grain of mustard seed, and though it be in a rock, or in the heavens or in the earth, Allah will bring it forth. Verily, Allah is Subtle, Well-Aware.'') [31:16] 
In the Two Sahihs it was recorded that Abu Hurayrah said that the Messenger of Allah said:
(Two words which are light on the tongue, heavy in the Balance and beloved to Ar-Rahman: "Subhan Allahi wa bi hamdihi, Subhan Allahil `Azim (Glory and praise be to Allah, Glory be to Allah the Almighty).'') 
Imam Ahmad also recorded that `A'ishah said that one of the Companions of the Messenger of Allah sat down before him and said, "O Messenger of Allah, I have two slaves who lie to me, betray me and disobey me, and I hit them and insult them. How do I stand with regard to them'' The Messenger of Allah said:
(The extent to which they betrayed you, disobeyed you and lied to you will be measured against the punishment you meted out to them. If your punishment was commensurate with their misconduct, then you will be equal and you will not have anything counted for you or against you. If your punishment of them was less than that what they deserved for their misconduct, then this will count in your favor. If your punishment of them was more than what they deserved for their misconduct, then Allah will take what is due to them from you.) 
Then the man started to weep before the Messenger of Allah , and the Messenger of Allah asked, (What is the matter with him Has he not read the words of Allah, (And We shall set up Balances of justice on the Day of Resurrection, then none will be dealt with unjustly in anything. And if there be the weight of a mustard seed, We will bring it. And sufficient are We to take account.)) The man said, "O Messenger of Allah, I think there is nothing better than keeping away from these people -- meaning his slaves -- I call upon you to bear witness that they are all free.''

Yusuf Ali  Explanation
Not the smallest action, word, thought, motive, or predilection but must come into the account of Allah. Cf. Browning (in Rabbi Ben Ezra): "But all, the world's coarse thumb And finger failed to plumb, So passed in making up the main account; All instincts immature. All purposes unsure. That weighed not as his work, yet swelled the man's account; Thoughts hardly to be packed Into a narrow act. Fancies that broke through language and escaped; All I could never be, All, men ignored in me, This, I was worth to God, Whose wheel the pitcher shaped."

The literalism of Sale has here excelled itself: he translates, "and there will be sufficient accountants with us"! What is meant is that when Allah takes account, His accounting will be perfect: there will be no flaw in it, as there may be in earthly accountants, who require other people's help in some matters of account which they do not understand for want of knowledge of that particular department they are dealing with. Allah's knowledge is perfect, and therefore His justice will be perfect also; for He will not fail to take into account all the most intangible things that determine conduct and character. See last note. There is no contradiction between this and xviii. 104-105, where it is said that men of vain works, i.e., shallow hypocritical deeds, will have no weight attached to their deeds, In fact the two correspond.

Qur'an Wiki:
The present passage concludes with a final scene from the Day of Reckoning. The mustard seed here represents the smallest and lightest thing our eyes can see. Yet not even a mustard seed is overlooked or ignored. The scales that are used are so accurate that a single mustard seed makes a difference.

Let people, then, reflect on what they put forward for that day. Let hearts be attentive to the warnings, and let those who turn their backs or indulge in ridicule be warned. They may be able to evade punishment in this life, but on Judgement Day the reckoning takes every little thing into account. The scales then are so accurate that even a tiny seed can make all the difference.

Thus the accurate scales of the hereafter, the unfailing laws of the universe, the rules applicable to advocates of the faith and the laws of human nature converge in perfect harmony, operated by the hand of the Almighty. This testifies to the truth of God’s oneness, the theme that pervades this whole sūrah.

Read more about Justice as mentioned at various places in Qur'an in our Reference Page: Selected Verses from the Qur'an - under the heading Justice.

Please listen to explanation of the ayat by eminent Muslim scholar Nouman Ali Khan:
May Allah help us understand Qur'ān and help us to act upon the commandments of Allah contained therein. May Allah help us to walk the righteous path and never ever take shelter of our position of authority to evade justice or deny justice to the impeccant, for we will have to be answerable to every action of ours on the Day of Judgement when none shall be wronged.  Aameen.

For more Selected Verses, please refer to our reference page: Selected Verses from the Qur'anYou may also refer to our Reference Pages for knowing more about Islam and Qur'ān.
Photo | Reference: | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 |
Reading the Qur'ān should be a daily obligation of a Muslim - Reading it with translation will make it meaningful. But reading its Exegesis / Tafsir will make you understand it fully.

An effort has been made to gather explanation / exegesis of the surahs of the Qur'ān from authentic sources and then present a least possible condensed explanation of the surah. In that the exegesis of the chapters of the Quran is mainly based on the "Tafhim al-Qur'an - The Meaning of the Qur'an" by one of the most enlightened scholars of the Muslim World Sayyid Abul Ala Maududi.  
In order to augment and add more explanation as already provided, additional input has been interjected from following sources: 
  • Towards Understanding the Quran
  • Tafsir Ibn Khatir
  • Muhammad Asad Translation
  • Javed Ahmad Ghamidi / Al Mawrid
  • Al-Quran, Yusuf Ali Translation
  • Verse by Verse Qur'an Study Circle
In addition the references of other sources which have been explored have also been given above. Those desirous of detailed explanations and tafsir (exegesis), may refer to these sites.

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