Ask Shaykh YQ – Episode 31 – Is Infinite Punishment Fair
Channel: Yasir Qadhi
Series: Yasir Qadhi - Ask Shaykh YQ
File Size: 16.97MB
Our brother Ahmed emails and says,
I'm having trouble understanding the issue of the eternality of jahannam. How do we answer somebody who says that no matter how evil a person is, a finite amount of sins should not be punished for infinity? on
ilaria no fee him.
So the brother is asking, How can we understand that jahannam is never ending, and this dunya is ending. And a person says, How is it fair that somebody is being punished for all of eternity for a finite quantity of sins? And then the brother says, And on that note, is it true that even taymiyah denied the eternality of jahannam? Okay, so he asks a very deep and profound question of theology. And as you know, I always like to start with theology or methodology. And my first question, so, this is a two part question. Number one, the wisdom of jahannam being a bit about the eternality and number two did Yvan Tamia say that jahannam is not eternal, that it will stop and that there will be
no agenda after that. As for the first question,
realize that the scholars of Islam of all of the fit of Islam that are mainstream Fedak all of the classical groups of Islam, they have unanimously agreed that Jana is eternal. No one of significance of any group denied that gender is eternal. And this is the standard position of all the schools of Islam. As for jahannam, then it is also the case that the majority position the mainstream position of all of the groups and even Yes, of course, the one we're most most interested in Sunni Islam is that jahannam as well is eternal. And this is the standard doctrine that we find explicitly affirmed. And many books of al Qaeda have many strands even as soon as I'm not just of any one
particular strand. And there are many evidences for this, for example, in the Quran, in Surah, telegin. Allah says woman jasola, hawara Sula, who for in Allah who narrow Johanna Hadid enough he has a bada. And by the way, FYI, three times in the Quran three times Exactly. Allah azzawajal mentions hardy the NFP about that for jahannam. And for agenda is more than this for Gen num three times. Allah says Holly Dena, Fie ha aboda they shall be residing in it forever, Khalid and hard, Khalid actually does not mean forever hard, it means long life. So that's where the name Khalid is the one who lives long. So Hollywood does not necessarily mean forever, hollywood or Hollywood means
long, but not forever. But the word Abba de, that's where we bring the the twist and we say other than means, and it does mean in Arabic, that means forever and ever and ever and ever. So three times Allah mentions Johanna, and then he says Holly Dena fee ha aboda. And in another verse in that image in the minify, that'd be Johanna Ma, ha the dune the sinners shall be in jahannam sinners here means we should akun because whenever Allah says Colleen, then he's talking about the big sin which shook the sinners will be in jahannam Holly Dune forever any longtime holiday and Islamic forever longtime la you tell one whom it will never subside from them life Toronto won't be here mobility
soon, and they shall remain in it a one mile bottom now when I can come home over the mean, and we did not do just injustice to them. They did injustice to themselves. And there are many, many evidences in the Quran, for example, called Mr. Naughty Judo to home but the now home Judo den hire Alia do colada, every time their skin withers away, we will give them another skin so that they can taste the torment. So there are many, many verses that indicate eternality of jahannam. Therefore, it is pretty much standard doctrine that jahannam will also last forever, for the category of those who commit *. As for sinful Muslims, then by unanimous consensus, they will not be in Jannah
forever. There's no controversy over that. Now. The question was not over the eternality to the question was how do we understand the wisdom? Right? How do we understand the wisdom because no matter how many sins a person has done, one lifetime is how long 60 years, seven years. 100 years.
Let's even say the profit nor time, 900 years, 900 years, compared to infinity of jahannam, a coffee comes a non Muslim comes, or even a Muslim who has doubts and says, How is that fair? This is the question, right? Okay, how do we respond to this question? Firstly, realize that
the problem of trying to explain the wisdom of Allah is an impossible one.
You're asking a human, to try to explain to you the wisdom of the creator of humans.
You are putting a person and it's not possible. And in the end of the day, perhaps our minds cannot understand what are you going to do then? Rather than come with the assumption that I can understand every wisdom of Allah? This is an arrogant assumption. Who are you to understand every wisdom of Allah. Now? Is it wrong to ask for the wisdom? Is it wrong to ask the wisdom of a ruling? Yes or no? No. What's the evidence for this?
How do we know it's okay to ask for the wisdom?
Many the Sahaba asked us aluna case alone, aka the angels asked, Why are you creating Adam, right? Why would you put Adam although we haven't used a one 100 to subdue him? Because it is not how wrong to try to ask why it is how long to reject if you don't understand why there's a difference between the two. Right? They asked you about this, they asked you about that? And no problem asked. So the brothers question is not a problem. But before I answer I want to say even if you don't understand or I don't understand, or I cannot help you understand, that doesn't change the ruling. So we have to answer the first in this manner. also realize that while we fully believe that Allah does not do
any injustice in the law, Hola, yo limo, Miss Oliveira one hour rabuka Viva La Molina beat, your Lord does not do volume. While we firmly believe this, what is volume, volume is to burden someone with more than he or she can bear or to punish someone for the sins of another person. This is.
As for the severity of punishment, this is not the same
as for punishing this versus that. This is not the law giver in any law in any land and the Constitution, they will give you the punishment, the same crime in this country in 50. States, you might have 50 different punishments. In this one country, you might have 50, I'm being exaggerating, but really, I'm being true in the same way. It is possible the same issue can have multiple punishments, even in this land, depending on what state you live in.
This is the reality of law, punishments are different. And the law has every right to assign any punishment to any crime, because he is the law giver, he is the one who decides. So when he has assigned a punishment for a crime, somewhere in our autonomy, this is not volume, volume would be to punish x for the crime of why that is blue. And Allah will never do that. Right? Luckily for not nothing that was I have what it is, it was it was it. These are two looms, Allah said he will never do. As for the severity of punishment, there is no volume over here, the law is clear. And the law has been told to us. So there cannot be any volume for the quantity of punishment. In the end of the
day, Allah is Malik and he can punish as long as you want for any crime that he has told us as a crime. The second point here
is that to try to understand the wisdom, let us give us some examples in our own human law. Do we judge the length of the sentence by the length of the crime or by the severity of the crime?
Do we judge the length of the sentence by the length of the crime or by the severity of the crime? severity of the crime? A murder in our times, if you use a gun will take one millisecond 0.001 seconds something like this, a murder will take less than one 100th of a second? Correct? If you use a gun?
Should the punishment if somebody were to say why did why why was he given a lifetime for the deed that costs point? 01? Would anybody think this is a logical a logical error rather or excuse? Will anybody say Oh, the crime only took one second? Why is he being punished for 70 years? No, you don't look at how long the crime was you look at how evil the crime was correct. This is the law everybody understands. Now in our religion, and honestly, even without the Quran telling us this common sense tells us the biggest question
crime of any human being is to ignore why he has been created. What bigger crime is there than to ignore, to not even think about to simply turn away from the highest purpose of existence? Which is to really try to find a Why am I here? Who created me? What's the purpose of life, worship of Allah subhanho wa Taala. And therefore, it is completely logical and rational, that the one who refuse to even think about a law the real mushrik and Kaffir. And that's why we say the believers who are sinful this does not apply to them. The believers who believe in Allah who have an ounce of EMA, and as the prophets have said, eventually there'll be more from Johanna no problem there. That is where
the logic applies where, okay, a finite quantity of sins. Yes. Okay. But the one who did not even think about sin and good, he didn't think about heaven and hell, life and death, he never thought about why he is here. Then this person, any sub panel, or what was his life for? What did he do with all of his life, as he said about her great uncle intrude on? You had a solo live injured, and there's so much goodwill ALLAH forgive him? And even the profitsystem said, law you have been to so difficult No, because it began to dawn never once said, Oh, Allah forgive me. He never once even as a mushrik, as a pagan as a golfer. He never said, Oh ALLAH forgive me. Allah was never on his mind,
why should then Allah turn to him and forgive him? So the one who never thinks of Allah turns away from a law has no purpose other than to live like an animal, when a law made you a human and better than an animal and you live your life like an animal, then this, the severity of the punishment is based upon the severity of the crime, and what greater crime is there than to turn away from a law. And this is indicated in a hadith in Sahih, Muslim authentic hadith, the prophet system says that Allah will say, to the one who is being punished the least in jahannam, the least, and in which he has been punished forever, Allah will say, Oh, so and so? Would you give up all that you possessed
in your life, your wealth, your family, everything? Would you give it up right now to be saved from Johanna? And the man will say, Yes, I will, and 10 times more, Allah will say, listen to this, but I didn't ask you for all of this in this worth Earth. I only asked that you worship Me, and don't do * with me. And you refused for a beta. You refused, and you insisted on worshipping other than me. So here we have one of the wisdoms of the eternality of the punishment. What did Allah ask of us? All of our time, all of our wealth know, Allah said, understand who created you and believe in that entity and worship Him and if you're sinful turned him for forgiveness? alesco photo Rahim. But
the one who didn't even care to think. And that's why again, we go back to another question I gave many, many months ago, about how about non Muslims who never heard of Islam and I mentioned look, we say Islam is the only way to Allah Subhana. Without it, there's one path, but there might be people on other paths, the path does not lead to gender. But Allah knows the person was sincere, not the path. And Allah might forgive the person, not the path. So we firmly believe somebody who tried to be religious in an environment where there was no Islam, who try to be sincere, righteous, pious in his own way, without knowing Islam and whatnot, inshallah, this person, we hope, the best for him.
We don't pronounce a verdict in this dunya. But the accurate we hope, the best for him, no problem with that person. But how about the one who just did not care, woman and Vickery, the one who turned away from Ola sticker. So the severity of the punishment is due to the severity of the crime. The third thing we can say here, is that another thing that some of our scholars have mentioned, the eternality of the punishment, is due to the fact that the crime would have been eternal if they lived eternally. In other words, Allah says in the Quran, they want to come back to this earth, right? And Allah says, What do I do? Right, if they were to come back? Right, well, Roger, what is
No, well, I will do the I'll do the man wonder if they were to be returned, they would go back to what they were doing. This is a very key phrase in the Quran. What do they do? If Allah Allah says, If I were to bring them back, they would go back to doing what they had been doing, which means if they live forever, there should be forever. And so their punishment is for ever as well. So these are three answers that can be given to respond to the wisdom as for the issue of Ibn taymiyyah, denying the eternality of jahannam This is a very, very interesting and a very detailed and a very question.
controversial topic. And I would love to give a much longer lecture, which was a very advanced lecture for were to be given. And in fact, in my master's dissertation 20 years ago or something, there's an entire section about this issue. Because it dealt with whatever topics I was doing in a nutshell, did event me hold this view,
it is quite clear that he defended the existence of two views in Sunni Islam, one that says jahannam is eternal, and one that says janome is not eternal. In fact, the last book that he ever wrote, and I have it in my library, the last book that he ever wrote, before he passed away is the refutation of the written eternality of jahannam. Or in the title itself has has there are different versions of the title. The title is the the issue about the eternality of gender is gender eternal, are not ignore. Aiya mentions this that I asked him when Tamia came as his main student, I asked him in Tamia about this question, that is it true that some of the set of denied that jahannam is going to
be forever had been Tamia said, Yes, it is true. And then he wrote his famous treaties. And it is a treatise that has been discovered, and it has been published recently. And he defends the two opinions, but he doesn't actually say what his own opinion is.
So this has left people skeptical. Now his students ignore him. His student abdelkarim
has written about this in many, many places. And in fact, in one of his books, he has like 1015 pages about this topic. And in fact, I've written a paper that is published as well about Liam's view on this issue, and you can reference it over there. But in in em, perhaps in all of Sunni history, is the one who defends this issue of jahannam not being permanent, most like the most detailed evidences he brings to claim that jahannam is not eternal, that at some stage jahannam will cease to exist and the people in Jannah will cease they will not. And he interprets Holly Dena, fie halberda, as aboda here means long, long, long, long, long, long, long time, but not eternal and his
evidence is organic, and from the setup as for the Quran, Allah says lab Athena fee haba an odd means long periods of time. So Allah says they will be in it for long periods of time and a lot also says in the Quran that they will remain in it mme it is semi watchword although in the Masha are a book in the Rebecca Farah Ulema unit, they will be punished in jahannam for as long as the heavens and earth remains now this is an expression in Arabic Madame it is semi watered out means for forever right? Then out so it means they will main agenda forever. Then Allah says Illa Masha are a book except if your Lord decreased something else. In Rebecca Lima you read Allah is able to do
whatever he wants. Now why did Allah end the verses of john adams punishment with this very interesting ending? They shall be in there forever. Except for law wills and a lot can will whatever he wants. You see this except it will tell you and bases it on this issue. And he does bring this issue as well, Avalos Rama, etc, etc. Then after 10 pages of defending and evidence and he quotes even Masood Eben Massoud said this formidable cop said this, Abu huraira said this, there are narrations found in the classical books that eventually jahannam will cease to exist from the Sahaba not any Hadith about the prop from the Prophet system. Then it will tell you him says if you were to
ask me what my opinion is, I will say Allah knows best and he and left it there. He did not categorically state right. A lot family Modi recorded the Quran in Arabic founded Lima, UT. So both have been telling me I have no claim they
This is my opinion, seem to be inclined towards the claim that jahannam is not eternal. But to say that they believed this is also not 100% accurate. They defended it. Yes. And they said this is very plausible, especially if not by him. They said this is very plausible. Now. I want to just finish off here by saying that this question there's a second question as well, that the the issue of Ibn taymiyyah and his position has caused much controversy. Has it been Tamia typically always does upon Allah Masha Allah had been Tamia is the person I admired the most in all of Islamic history. And it is also true to say he generated so much controversy while he was alive and even until our times not
all controversy is bad By the way, hint hint.
So, and of course, even it even TV, of course, is very interesting. That's how to look. I just have to say this here that his followers and I have gently criticized many of his followers, his followers, some of his followers today, they did not like the fact that had been Tamia might have denied the eternality of jahannam. Because this is something that you don't find in any person before even taymiyah. So some of the modern people of that movement, who claim to fall live in Tamia deny that Epitome ever said this, and they say this book is a fabrication. And they say he could never have said this. And there are massive debates within that movement, whether he said it or not.
And I find this so interesting, that they have constructed an image of a bit of a meme that even even taymiyah could not live up to, if you understand what I'm talking about. If not, then don't worry about it. But the image that they have of their version of Islam is so unreal, that even their own scholar that they look up to, could not live up to their own interpretation of that image. And also, I would I, of course, I admire me immensely, even though I'm not a blind follower. And I respectfully disagree with some minor things. But one thing I love about Ibn taymiyyah he didn't care what anybody thought. And he spoke what he believed to be the truth, even if and this is a key
point, even if pretty much everybody before him said something else.
And he seems to be one of the first people breaking away from a vast majority of scholarship. But he feels the Quran and Sunnah, says something else, simply because 99.9% of the people before him said something didn't mean anything to him.
And to me, that requires intellectual bravery, whether you agree or disagree, this is independent mind set. And I hope that also contextualize this a little bit of other things without going too detailed. Whether that is true or not. A low bidder just in the African history will be the judge in this world as well. But I agree with this point. 100%. So what if 99.9% of the people before you said it doesn't make a doc with a capital hat?
And if you look at his position on the triple product, for example, we'll talk about the one because that was a question also can one day we'll talk about that. Even Tamia was the first *y the first item to publicly state the triple product cannot be triple. And this is the fifth way that even as hard now is adopting and other institutions are adopting, because they realize the world is a very difficult place. If you follow this position, we'll get to the issue of triple da even taymiyah was the one who said this, that now is becoming standard position, even though none of the mainstream scholars before him said that. So in any case, if you want a further reading, there is actually a
book published by Oxford, a collection of articles you also have my article in there published in it. And the title of the book is Islam and the fate of others by Mohammed Hassan Ali. And there is an entire chapter about even to me his view about jahannam and there's also a chapter about my view about salvation. You will find it in that book. That is our first question. The second
enough in dounia Solomon