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Every believer must know that there is Akhirah. They have to live wisely and do what is good for others. If they attach value to the teachings of Islam then they stand to benefit by entering God’s Paradise. By reading the Quran Rahman finds the answers to questions about life on the earth and the hereafter.
The Quran is the holy book of Islam. Many scholars have written their understanding of the book. They quote from the chapters in the Quran to edify their teachings. However, it is important to note that misinterpretation of the Quran is not acceptable.
Fazlur Rahman wrote many scholarly topics about the Quran. In his books, he got inspiration from the Quran and wrote with confidence quoting the specific areas he addressed. He was a Muslim modernist, who believed that Islam could be compatible with modern culture and institutions.
The actions of man
People need to follow God’s teachings of respect, honesty, and kindness to others. They must adhere to the instructions wholly because they will receive punishment as a result of their actions. Rahman says there is nothing to hide from God.
In this life, people die and live behind possessions for their relatives to inherit. According to the Quran, God inherits the moral deeds and sayings of a person until judgment day. Rahman supports this idea too.
It is important for people to live for the higher values in life. Most of the men run after lower life because of the immediate benefits. Rahman reminds people of judgment day. People must be wary of their actions.
God also reminds people of what He did to the population of Iram. He condemns those who love wealth and those who do not give to the poor and the orphans. God tells them to remember how he dealt with Thamud, the Egyptians, and others for sinning against him. He says that He is watching their actions (The Qur’an, Al-Fajr 89.6-14). Rahman says God is present everywhere.
God sent prophets to give His word to people. People work together to achieve community goals. During the day of reckoning, each one will stand alone. Judgment will not just come to particular communities and their Prophets.
Yaum al Qiyamah is the Islamic Day of judgment. Al-Akhirah, which means the end, is the moment of truth. Every Muslim life knowing that there will come a time when he will need to account for his life on earth.
Judgment day is important because it will ensure fairness. Men will see and receive what they had been striving to achieve. God will weigh people’s deeds. According to Rahman, it will be a moment of truth. Everything that people did in secret will be opened for all to see.
Some people will go with earthly gold to try to give to God so that He can save them. God will reject their bribe and instead send them to their sorrowful ending.
The Quran, according to Rahman, gives a standard picture of the end times in terms of the joys of the Garden and the punishments of hell. When people live righteously, they accrue goodness for the future. Evil begets people in their later life because they did something bad in their past lives.
Good people shall receive their deed sheets in their right hand while the evil will receive theirs in their left hand. There will be questions when people get to heaven. The guards of fire will ask the potential inmates why they were there. They will also have to answer whether they saw the messengers of God warning them.
When one knows that God is ever watching, one knows that his account of life will bring him close to hell or the Paradise of God. People who did not stop sinning on earth will not believe the things they will see happening during the end times.
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Al-Akhirah in Surah al-Fajr
The sinners will come face to face with Hell on that day. The earth and everything it will crush down by the power of God. The offenders will start regretting why they never followed thoroughly the teachings (The Qur’an, Al-Fajr 89.21-26).
The righteous will receive a warm reception on Doomsday. A direct invitation from Allah awaits them. He will comfort them for pleasing Him with their good deeds on earth. Allah will show his satisfaction for their good deeds and welcome them into the Garden (The Qur’an, Al-Fajr 89.27-30).
Rahman points out that the righteous will gain a happier and better life. The evildoers will call out for help, but it will be too late. The time for repentance will be over. The mercy of God will no longer be able to save them. The questions and answers will only seek to prove what God had promised.
Al-Akhirah may just be another word for anybody else, but not to the believers. Every Muslim life knowing that after living on earth, there is coming life after death. God will produce everybody’s actions. Every person will be accountable for his actions.
After receiving God’s messengers, one must follow their teachings and the warnings from God to qualify to enter The Garden of Paradise. It will be very painful for the wicked because they will receive severe punishment in the everlasting fire.
Fazlur Rahman expounds on Islamic teaching on life after death according to the Quran. He is correct in his teachings. He opens up meanings from chapters and verses in the Quran with great clarity. He brings out his arguments openly by citing from the Quran.
The Qur’an. Trans. by Tarif Khalidi. New York: Viking, 2008. Print.