Friday 20 May 2022

The Day when Satan will declare his True Colours

Reading various verses of Qur'an, we all know how Satan (Iblees) refused to prostrate in front of Adam due to his pride and superiority complex and how he was shunned out of Heavens. We also know that Satan promised Allah that he will surely mislead Allah's humanly creatures in their worldly life. He was given the time till the Day of Resurrection, though he was cautioned that despite his efforts he would fail in distracting the majority.

Today we share the 22nd verse of Surah 14. Abrahim (Abraham) in which Allah narrates to us what Iblis will say to his followers after Allah finishes with the judgement between His servants, sending the believers to the gardens of Paradise and the disbelievers to the lows (of the Fire). Iblis, may Allah curse him, will stand and address the latter, in order to add depression to their depression, sorrow to their sorrow and grief to their grief.

وَقَالَ الشَّيۡطٰنُ لَـمَّا قُضِىَ الۡاَمۡرُ اِنَّ اللّٰهَ وَعَدَكُمۡ وَعۡدَ الۡحَـقِّ وَوَعَدْتُّكُمۡ فَاَخۡلَفۡتُكُمۡ​ؕ وَمَا كَانَ لِىَ عَلَيۡكُمۡ مِّنۡ سُلۡطٰنٍ اِلَّاۤ اَنۡ دَعَوۡتُكُمۡ فَاسۡتَجَبۡتُمۡ لِىۡ​ ۚ فَلَا تَلُوۡمُوۡنِىۡ وَلُوۡمُوۡۤا اَنۡفُسَكُمۡ​ ؕ مَاۤ اَنَا بِمُصۡرِخِكُمۡ وَمَاۤ اَنۡتُمۡ بِمُصۡرِخِىَّ​ ؕ اِنِّىۡ كَفَرۡتُ بِمَاۤ اَشۡرَكۡتُمُوۡنِ مِنۡ قَبۡلُ​ ؕ اِنَّ الظّٰلِمِيۡنَ لَهُمۡ عَذَابٌ اَ لِيۡمٌ‏ 
(14:22) After the matter has been finally decided Satan will say: "Surely whatever Allah promised you was true; as for me, I went back on the promise I made to you.30 I had no power over you except that I called you to my way and you responded to me.31 So, do not blame me but blame yourselves. Here, neither I can come to your rescue, nor can you come to mine. I disavow your former act of associating me in the past with Allah.32 A grievous chastisement inevitably lies ahead for such wrong-doers." 

When the criminals will charge Satan with leading them astray, he will plead guilty, as if to say, "You yourselves see now that all the promises and warnings made by Allah have come out true and all the promises which I made have proved to be false. I also confess that it was all deception that I gave you false assurances of prosperity, beguiled you by greed and enticed you in the snare of great expectations. I assured you that in the first instance there will be no life in the Hereafter, and that, if there be any you will go scot-free by the intercession of such and such a saint. The only thing you have to do is to make offerings before him: then you may do whatever you please, for he will deliver you from all the consequences. I repeat that I said all these things and asked my agents to say the same. " 

That is, "You cannot say and prove that it was I who forced you to follow the wrong way, whereas you wanted to follow the Right Way. You will yourselves admit that it is not so. I did no more than this that I invited you to falsehood in opposition to the invitation to the Truth and tempted you to vice instead of virtue. But I had no power to force you to the wrong way, if you desired to follow the Right Way. when you had the power and the option to follow either of the ways. Now I am ready to bear the burden of the wicked invitation I extended to you, but you are not justified in any way to throw on me the burden of accepting my invitation for you did it on your own responsibility. You should, therefore, yourselves bear all its consequences."

" So, do not blame me but blame yourselves. Here, neither I can come to your rescue, nor can you come to mine. I disavow your former act of associating me in the past with Allah " This is a clear proof of shirk in practice, as apart from shirk in creed. As Satan will charge his followers with making him a partner with God, it is obvious that as far as creed is concerned there is no one who makes Satan a partner with God in His Godhead or His worship: nay, every one curses him for his evil ways. Nevertheless, people obey and submit to him and follow him blindly, as if he were their "god" and that is what has been termed shirk.

Let us now consider this thesis from the opposite point of view. Some one might say that this does not hold good, for this is based on a mere saying of Satan which has been cited here. First, this objection is not sound because Allah Himself would have refuted it, had it been baseless. Secondly, this is not the only instance of shirk in practice in the Qur'an. Here are a few more instances of this:

  • (a) It charges the Jews and Christians with shirk because they set up their priests and monks as their "Lords" besides Allah. (IX: 31).
  • (b) Those who follow the superstitious customs have been called mushriks. (VI: 136-139).
  • (c) Those who follow their lusts have been charged with making their "selves" their "god". (XXV: 43).
  • (d) Those who are disobedient to Allah have been accused of worshiping "Satan". (XXXVI: 60).
  • (e) Those who follow man-made laws without Allah's sanction have been reproved for setting up the makers of the laws without Allah's sanction as partners with God. (XLI: 21).
All the above instances are clear proofs of the fact that shirk is not confined to this creed alone that one might set up a partner with Allah in His Godhead as an article of faith. But it is also shirk that one should follow and surrender to some one other than Allah without any Divine sanction or in spite of a Divine prohibition. Such a one shall be guilty of shirk even though the follower might be at the same time cursing the one whom he follows and obeys. The only difference between the two kinds of shirk may be the extent of the crime and not its nature. 

Tafsir Ibn-Kathir
Continuing from the para 2 of the premise, the Satan will declare: `(Verily, Allah promised you a promise of truth.) by the words of His Messengers that if you follow them, you will gain safety and deliverance. Truly, Allah's promise was true and correct news, while I promised you then betrayed you.'
Allah said in another Ayah, (He (Shaytan) makes promises to them, and arouses in them false desires; and Shaytan's promises are nothing but deceptions.) [4:120]
(I had no authority over you) Shaytan will say, `I had no proof for what I called you to, nor evidence for what I promised you, (except that I called you, and you responded to me.) even though the Messengers establish the proof and unequivocal evidences against you and affirmed the truth of what they were sent to you with. But you disobeyed the Messengers and ended up earning this fate, (So blame me not,) today,

(but blame yourselves.), because it is your fault for defying the proofs and following me in the falsehood that I called you to.' Shaytan will say next, (I cannot help you), I cannot benefit, save, or deliver you from what you are suffering, (nor can you help me.), nor can you save me and deliver me from the torment and punishment I am suffering,

(I deny your former act of associating me (Shaytan) as a partner with Allah.) or because you associated me with Allah before,' according to Qatadah. Ibn Jarir commented; "I deny being a partner with Allah, the Exalted and Most Honored.'' 

This opinion is the most plausible, for Allah said in other Ayat,
(And who is more astray than one who calls on others besides Allah, such as will not answer him till the Day of Resurrection, and who are (even) unaware of their calls to them And when mankind are gathered, they will become their enemies and will deny their worshipping.)[46:5-6] and,
(Nay, but they (the so-called gods) will deny their worship of them, and become opponents to them.)[19:82]
Allah said next, (Verily, the wrongdoers), who deviate from truth and follow falsehood, will earn a painful torment. It appears that this part of the Ayah narrates the speech that Shaytan will deliver to the people of the Fire after they enter it, as we stated. 
`Amir Ash-Sha`bi said, "On the Day of Resurrection, two speakers will address the people. Allah the Exalted will say to `Isa, son of Maryam, (Did you say unto men: "Worship me and my mother as two gods besides Allah'') ﴿5:116﴾ 
until, (Allah will say: "This is a Day on which the truthful will profit from their truth.'')﴿5:119﴾
Shaytan, may Allah curse him, will stand and address the people, (I had no authority over you except that I called you, and you responded to me.) Allah next mentioned the final destination of the miserable ones, who earned the disgrace and torment and having to listen to Shaytan address them, 

then He mentioned the final destination of the happy ones,(next verse 23): (14:23) As for those who had believed and did good in the world, they shall be admitted to the Gardens beneath which rivers flow. There, with the leave of Allah, they shall abide forever, and will be greeted with: "Peace".

Yusuf Ali  Explanation:
After the Judgment, Evil declares itself in its true colours. Frankly it says: 'I deceived you. The promise of Allah was true, but you believed me rather than Allah. I had no power to force you. I had but to call you, and you came running after me. You must blame yourselves. Did you think I was equal with Allah? I know too well that I was not and never could be. If you did wrong, you must suffer the Penalty.'

See the last note. An alternative interpretation of this sentence may be: "I had already beforehand rebelled against Allah with Whom ye associated me."

Muhammad Asad Explanation:
(And when everything will have been decided, Satan will say: "Behold, God promised you something that was bound to come true!) Lit., "God promised you a promise of truth" - i.e., the promise of resurrection and last judgment. 

(I, too, held out [all manner of] promises to you - but I deceived you. Yet I had no power at all over you: I but called you - and you responded unto me. Hence, blame not me, but blame yourselves.) In his commentary on this passage, Razi remarks: "This verse shows that the real Satan (ash-shaytan al-asli) is [man's own] complex of desires (an-pals): for, Satan makes it clear [in the above] that it was only by means of insinuations (waswasah) that he was able to reach [the sinner's soul]; and had it not been for an already-existing [evil] disposition due to lusts, anger, superstition or fanciful ideas, these [satanic] insinuations would have had no effect whatsoever." 

(It is not for me to respond to your cries, nor for you to respond to mine:) I.e., "I cannot respond to your call for help, just as you should not have, in your lifetime, responded to my call." The above sentence is often interpreted in another sense, namely, "I cannot succour you, just as you cannot succour me". However, in view of Satan's allegorical reference - in the preceding passages as well as in the next sentence - to the sinners' earthly past, the rendering adopted by me seems to be more suitable; moreover, it is closer to the primary meaning of the verb sarakha ("he cried out"), from which the form musrikh ("one who responds to a cry") is derived (Jawhari).

(for, behold, I have [always] refused to admit that there was any truth in your erstwhile belief that I had a share in God's divinity.") This is, to my mind, the meaning of the highly elliptical phrase kafartu bi-ma ashraktumuni min qabl, which could be literally - but most inadequately - translated thus: "I have refused to admit the truth of that whereby you associated me aforetime [with God]." The implication is that Satan, while endeavouring to lead men astray, never claims to be God's "equal" (cf. 7:20 , where he speaks of God, to Adam and Eve, as "your Sustainer", or 15:36 and {39}, where he addresses Him as "my Sustainer", or 8:48 and 59:16 , where he says, "behold, I fear God") but, rather, tries to make men's sinful doings "seem goodly to them" (cf. 6:43 , 8:48 , 16:63 , 27:24 , 29:38 ), i.e., persuades them that it is morally justifiable to follow one's fancies and selfish desires without any restraint. But while Satan himself does not make any claim to equality with God, the sinner who submits to Satan's blandishments attributes to him thereby, as it were, "a share in God's divinity". - It must be stressed, in this connection, that the Qur'anic expression shaytan is often used as a metaphor for every human impulse that is intrinsically immoral and, therefore, contrary to man's best - i.e., spiritual - interests. 

(Verily, for all evildoers there is grievous suffering in store.) I.e., all those who had consciously - either from intellectual arrogance or from moral weakness - responded to "Satan's call".

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. 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.
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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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