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By Amr Khaled
Start thinking about Judgment Day! But I don't want to be just telling stories, I want you to start imagining, with all your senses that you are there now. I'll try as hard as I can to draw a picture just as if you were really standing there. But please, forget that I am giving a lecture now, I'm not. We are just sitting together, imagining together what will happen on Resurrection Day (Judgment Day). My aim today is not to scare you. My aim is to tell you the facts about that day.
How will it begin?
"The Trumpet will just be sounded, when all that are in the heavens and on earth will swoon, except such as it will please Allah (to exempt). Then a second one will be sounded, when, behold, you will be standing and looking on!"
"The trumpet shall be sounded, when behold! From the sepulchers (men) will rush forth to their Lord!"
Today we will only speak about one topic– the standing on resurrection day waiting for judgment. After the trumpet is blown, your body parts start to join together, and your bones start to merge once more. Your brain starts thinking, your eyes open and you start to have life back again.
Imagine what this great blow will do? It will bring back all the sand of earth that you were made from thousands of years ago. Imagine the greatness and power of this blow? The trumpet width is like the width of earth and skies together. Your grave cracks and opens from the mightiness of the blow. Are you visualizing this great day with me? So now you are back to life, coming out from your grave, naked and covered in sand, with no water available to wash yourself. Your situation is very hard.
What will you say? All the people on that day will cry out saying the same word: "myself, myself". "I don't care today about anyone except myself." Imagine the sound of billions of people around you all saying the same word "myself, myself". Who came out with you from the same grave? Now regarding your father and your mother– do you remember that day when your father died how much you cried? Do you remember how much you hugged and kissed him and said, "If I could only see him again for one second?" And now, on the resurrection day, after thousands of years, imagine how much you really missed him. Of course you will hug him and kiss him... or at least that is what you imagine. But no, this will not happen.
Allah says: "That Day shall a man flee from his own brother, and from his mother and his father, and from his wife and his children."
Imagine yourself running away from your own father! From your own Mother, from your spouse, from your children! It has been a thousand years since the last time you saw them and you are running! Can you imagine yourself running from your mother, your children and your spouse? Everyone is running, but where to? No one knows where to. We are just running and saying the same word "myself, myself" again and again. "Myself–Myself". Imagine yourself running without an aim. You don't know where you are going, you are so afraid, and you're just running and running. You don't want to be tied down by anyone and you don't want anyone to stop you from running.
Maybe this picture scared you, but I told you that resurrection day it not all fearful. Now imagine the bright and beautiful side: A family coming out from their graves holding hands. Imagine with me– the father, the mother, and the children– all holding hands together. Why is that? Examine the verse which says: "Friends on that day will be foes, one to another, - except the Righteous." So if a family was righteous in their life will they run away from each other? Of course not. So the verse: "That Day shall a man flee from his own brother, and from his mother and his father, and from his wife and his children." Who does it apply to? It applies to the disbeliever of God and the people who forgot about God in their lives. For example, if two friends loved each other, and helped each other in obeying God in their life...on the resurrection day they are standing hand in hand. If two friends travel long distances every day in order to listen to Islamic lectures, then the same thing is true for them.
It's up to you. Which picture do you prefer? We are now all gathered on the same land. Imagine nowadays how life is becoming crowded with so many people. That is nothing compared to all the millions and billions standing together on Judgment Day. There are no trees for shade, no water to drink, and no rock to hide behind. "They will all be marshaled before Allah together".
This verse doesn't mean they are marshaled physically...no, it means that everything in their soul and heart is apparent...everything is obvious. Your cruel side appears, anything sinful you did in your life appears, if you had betrayed your spouse, your friends, your employer... it will all be clear. Yet, look at the good side. Not only will bad things appear, good things will too. If you prayed, if you fasted, if you did anything good in your life, it will also appear. Take a moment now to think about it! What would you like to show on that day? Really, it's not all fearful, it isn't all horror. If you can imagine that day clearly, you will give up a lot of bad habits that will make you regret later. So, as you can see, it all depends on what you choose to do in your life.
Now, let's go back to Judgment Day. How long do you think you will keep standing? Guess again! The answer is 50,000 years of standing! Your throat gets dry from thirst, but you still don't die. Your stomach will nearly burst from hunger, but you still don't die. Your legs can barely carry you, 50,000 years! Imagine! Who can take all that? Are you scared? Well, don't be. As a hadith tells us, time passes quickly for a believer, as long as it takes to pray two quick Rak'as. Which one are you? Imagine yourself standing there full of regret and saying, "If only I obeyed Allah". How long will you stand, 60 years? 60 years is the average life of a human. 20 years? 600 years? 20,000 years? 50,000 years? Or just a small prayer's length of time because you obeyed Allah's commandments. And as for the times that you disobeyed Allah, you quickly repented and asked Allah for forgiveness?
And not only are you standing; you are without clothes, crowded in a small and confined space. Imagine all the congestion and all the people–squished together. Imagine the pain and fatigue, the heat and the thirst. Who can take all that?
Now, let's start looking at the people around you–one is blind, though he wasn't in life, another one has vision although he was blind in life. You are confused, which one of them are you? Look at the verses: "But whosoever turns away from My Message, verily for him is a life narrowed down, and We shall raise him up blind on the Day of Judgment." He will say: "O my Lord! Why hast Thou raised me up blind, while I had sight (before)?" (Allah) will say: "Thus didst Thou, when Our Signs came unto thee, disregard them: so wilt thou, this day, be disregarded."
Let's look at another example– the criminals. These are the people who used to spread bad things all over the earth–your so-called Muslim friends who taught you how to use drugs, whispered to you that it was o.k. to date and disobey your parents, made you forget prayer times by partying. Look at the Quranic verses: "And thou wilt see the sinners that day bound together in fetters; their garments of liquid pitch, and their faces covered with Fire". These criminals will be cuffed with chains, and with liquid pitch in their face, and then fire nears to their face, which will make them start burning and burning.
Now, let's look at a nice example– he is a person with light emitting from all over his body. He is like the moon in a dark land– when he moves his hand right the light moves right and when he moves it left, the light moves left. Allah says: "One Day shalt thou see the believing men and the believing women– how their Light runs forward before them and by their right hands: (their greeting will be): "Good News for you this Day! Gardens beneath which flow rivers to dwell therein for aye! This is indeed the highest Achievement!"
See the different cases of the people? Some will be standing for 50,000 years; some will be standing for a small prayer, some with their faces burning, some in complete darkness, some with light leading their paths. Which of these people are we?
Wait, another thing starts to happen. The sun starts to get closer and closer until it becomes one mile away from the heads of the people. Today, the sun is millions of light years away from us and we can barely stand it in the summer. Imagine when it is one mile away? Imagine how hot it will be. We all start to sweat. Imagine sweat combined with sand on your lips. You can't even open your mouth or the sand will enter. In fact, you can't even say ouch! Imagine 50,000 years, one sinks (drowns) in his sweat and doesn't die. But don't be afraid for Allah's shade will shade those who did not disobey Him. Imagine that–it is not any ordinary shade, but the shade of Allah's throne. Unlike the shade of a tree, this shade will cover so that no sun can shine through and you will sweat no more.
There are seven types of people who will be shaded on the day when there will be no shade but Allah's shade. Imagine Allah is calling for them now and you are waiting to be called:
1) A just leader
2) A young man, or woman, raised to obey Allah. Are you one of them? Come on, you must be one of them before it's too late. Don't wait and regret it until later in life. These people kept saying I will go to Allah when I am older. But how can you be so sure that you will even live until you are older? So, none of the last two are you? Let's go on to the third.
3) A man whose heart is joined with the mosques. What does that mean? It means that he loves the mosque so much that he prays all of the five prayers in the mosque. Remember when you said, "I'll not pray in the mosque. It is enough to pray at home." Now, keep standing then. Imagine now people are getting shaded under the Throne of Allah and you're still not? Let's go on to the fourth type of person. Now, maybe that's you!
4) Two people who loved each other for the sake of Allah. Do you have someone you love for the sake of Allah? No?
Now on to the fifth:
5) A man who was tempted by a beautiful woman and he refused this temptation and sin and said, "I'm afraid of God". This situation might happen to you some day; you have to resist and say no, to guarantee the shade of Allah's throne.
6) A man or woman who mentioned God alone and tears burst out from his/her eyes. Alone doesn't necessarily mean alone. You could be with a hundred people, but only God is on your mind. You cry from the love of God, not caring about people seeing you or not. Are you still standing? Is your heart that cold? Didn't you ever tear from the fear of God? One last chance is the seventh one. If you miss it, you will stay standing in the sun. This next one is very easy and we can all do it!
7) A person who paid charity such that his left hand doesn't know what his right hand spent. Go out now to a poor man, make sure no one is watching you, give him charity, and then go away quickly. This guarantees you that you will be shaded, Insha'Allah, under the throne of Allah.
Now, the standing people who are shaded by Allah and who stand for a small prayer are finished. The others are still left, just standing there. And the humanity starts to cry out, "Where is God to judge us, where are the Angels to judge us". They are just left there standing, nobody caring about them. So they start calling out again, "Who will help us? Who will get God to forgive us? Who will ask God for the start of judgment?" So they go to Adam (AS) and beg, "Please Adam, you are the first human, you are the one who the Angels prostrated to, please ask God to start judgment". Adam (AS) replies, "Myself, myself. Today my God is angry like never before, go and ask Ibrahim".
So they go to Ibrahim (AS) and beg, "Ibrahim, you are the friend of God, please ask God to start judgment". Ibrahim (AS) replies, "myself, myself. My God today is angry like never before, go to Musa". Then they go to Musa (AS). Imagine all of humanity moving at the same time as a huge bulk and you are inside it? So they beg Musa (AS) saying, "Musa, please ask God to start judgment". Musa (AS) replies, "Myself, myself. My God today is angry like never before, go to Jesus".
So they go to Jesus (AS) and say, "Jesus you are God's servant, please ask God to start judgment". Jesus (AS) replies, "Myself, myself. My God today is angry like never before, go to Muhammad the final of the prophets". So they finally go to Muhammad(S) saying "Muhammad, you are the last of the prophets. Please ask God to start judgment". So he replies, "I'll go, I'll go". So Muhammad(S) prostrates under Allah's throne. Imagine that's the first time you see him and in this situation. Allah says to him: "Muhammad, raise your head, ask and you'll be given what you want". Just imagine how precious Muhammad(S) must be to God?
So Mohammed(S) says, "I ask that the Judgment starts". So the judgment starts as requested. But two things must happen first before judgment starts. The first thing is very nice– we start getting clothed. So the first ones who get clothed are the Prophets (peace be upon them all). After that all humanity starts to get clothed according to their faith. Imagine seeing your family members clothed and you're still naked. Imagine the woman who delayed the decision of Hijab for 20 years, how much will the decision of her getting clothed be delayed?
Another thing must happen before Judgment starts. Hell must be brought. Allah says: "And Hell, that Day, is brought (face to face), - on that Day will man remember, but how will that remembrance profit him?"
Angels bring hell with 70,000 ropes. Each rope is held by 70,000 angels. This means that it takes 4,900,000,000 angels to bring hell. So how will hell be placed? Humanity will stand in a circle and it will be placed in the middle of all humanity. "So, by thy Lord, without doubt, we shall gather them together, and (also) the Evil Ones (with them); then shall we bring them forth on their knees round about Hell".
Upon seeing hell, people start to fall on their knees from horror. Where are the prophets? All the prophets are saying one phrase, "Please God, make it easy. Please God, make it easy". That is, except Muhammad(S), who pleads, "Please God, my nation. Please God, my nation". Imagine how much he loves us? The love of our Prophet(S) is so great that he begs Allah for Mercy for his Ummah.
So, where are you now? Have you obeyed Allah's Commandments? Have you prayed today? It's Ramadan now! Are you fasting? Are you praying the taraweeh prayers? Are you refraining from backbiting, gossiping, foul language? Are you kind to your parents, neighbors, fellow Muslims? Then don't be afraid! Look at the beautiful verses: "Those for whom the good (record) from Us has gone before, will be removed far therefrom. Not the slightest sound will they hear of Hell: what their souls desired, in that will they dwell. The Great Terror will bring them no grief: but the angels will meet them (with mutual greetings): "This is your Day, - (the Day) that ye were promised." The Day that We roll up the heavens like a scroll rolled up for books (completed)."
That means you will not see it, you will not even hear it, you will be standing far from hell with the Angels. So which one do you prefer? It's all in your hands; you can choose your situation by what you do now.
So the judgment starts, but the judgment has six rules:
1) No injustice today. Allah says: "Then shall anyone who has done an atom's weight of good, see it! And anyone who has done an atom's weight of evil, shall see it."
2) No one is going to be judged for other people's sins. "Nor can a bearer of burdens bear another's burdens". No son is going to be judged for his father's sins nor vice versa. But this rule has one exception– if anyone misguides someone, he will also carry this person's sins. For example: A guy who teaches his friends how to smoke cigarettes and other stuff, he will carry all their sins.
3) The judgment is written and not by mouth. Allah says: "And the Book (of Deeds) will be placed (before you); and thou wilt see the sinful in great terror because of what is (recorded) therein" They will say, "Ah! woe to us! What a Book is this! It leaves out nothing small or great, but takes account thereof!" They will find all that they did placed before them: And not one will thy Lord treat with injustice." Picture that! What is in your book? Try to remember!
4) A good deed can be counted as ten times or more, while the bad deed is counted as only one bad deed. Imagine the mercy of God! Not just ten times, it sometimes reaches 700 times. And only Allah knows the reward for fasting.
5) The sins convert to good deeds for those who asked Allah for forgiveness and started obeying him again. If you disobeyed Allah for 20 years and then started obeying him and didn't return back to the sins you were doing...the whole 20 years sins will convert to good deeds.
6) This next rule is quite difficult: the witnesses. The 1st witnesses are the angels. They wrote everything you did. They leave out nothing. Even if you made fun of someone with a smile. The 2nd witness is Mohammed (S). Imagine the prophet is testifying against you. He told you about the fajr prayer, he told you to lower your gaze, he told you to treat your parents with kindness. Didn't he teach you all of this? So imagine your situation...how you might feel when the prophet testifies against you. The 3rd witness is the land (the earth). If you traveled to make umrah, all of these miles, every sand particle, every tree, every rock, every blow of the wind will testify about you. The companions always prayed in lots of places so every piece of land will testify for them in front of Allah. Please make the lands that will testify on your side be more than those which will testify against you. Don't ever travel to commit sins. Do you know what that means...it means that all of these thousands of miles will testify against you on judgment day.
The last witness is so unusual you would never think of it ... some disbelievers think that there is no way they won't go to hell so they will tell Allah, "I'm not satisfied with these witnesses. No one testifies against me except myself." So Allah agrees and says, "Yes, we accept your testimony". So his mouth gets shut. Look at the verses: "That Day shall we set a seal on their mouths. But their hands will speak to us, and their feet bear witness, to all that they did." "On the Day that the enemies of Allah will be gathered together to the Fire, they will be marched in ranks. At length, when they reach the (Fire), their hearing, their sight, and their skins will bear witness against them, as to (all) their deeds. They will say to their skins: "Why bear ye witness against us?" They will say: "(Allah) hath given us speech, - (He) who giveth speech to everything: He created you for the first time, and unto Him were ye to return."
And his body starts to testify against him and the man becomes confused...Why did you do this my hand? Why did you do this my hand? I did what I did just for your pleasure. So it says: "Allah has given me speech, who giveth speech to everything". Can you imagine you are fighting with your own body? Your organs are fighting with each other! Can you imagine how humiliating?!?
The judgment starts right now. The verse says: "And thy Lord cometh, and His angels, rank upon rank".
Then, one by one will be presented in front of Allah all by himself. YOU, come to the Almighty! The angels come and take YOU!
Can you imagine this? You and Allah and your book in your hands?
So some people will run going to Allah as soon as he was called– he wants to stand and talk to Allah. Others will shiver from fright. So the angels will drag them and they will beg the angels to take them to hell without standing before Allah.
You are now standing before Allah and He starts asking you, "Did you take my meeting for granted? Was I so unimportant? Did you dare to do what you did in front of me and were ashamed from people? Why did you do this sin? Didn't I get you married? Didn't I give you strength? Didn't I give you money?"
"What made you think I'll forgive you for all your sins? Did you forget you're going to meet Me? Why did you seem so polite in front of people and you come to me with all the ugly things you do? Why did you hide from people and not be ashamed in front of me although you know I can see you? Why did you shiver if anyone saw you committing the sin and don't shiver when I look at you? Wasn't I watching your eyes and your legs when you were going to disobey me?"
If you were a disobedient slave and you are reading your book, the skin of your face falls and you burst in blood. Allah is so angry from you and tells you, "I'll never forgive you for your sins. Angels, take him to hell– I'm angry with him".
But if you were an obedient slave to Allah, Allah would tell you "come closer". So you approach Allah and you find yourself overwhelmed with His light. Then He covers you with a sheet so no one can hear you. So He tells you, "Can you remember that sin and that sin and that sin". At this moment you think you are a goner. But Allah tells you, "I concealed them to you in life and I am concealing them to you now. I forgive you and I'm pleased with you...go to My heaven".
I hope you have imagined it well. Today you have a chance to save yourself. I hope you don't wait until it is too late.
Editor's note: This speech by Amr Khaled has been translated from Arabic and has been edited for length and clarity.
The Islamic Bulletin
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|Note from the Editor|
|Letters to the Editor|
|Islamic World News|
|How I Embraced Islam|
|Let's Make A Change|
|A Sad Passing|
|Day Of Judgment|
|How Not To Miss Fajr|
|You Can Do It|
|A Love Story|
|Women in Islam|
|The Qur'an & Science|
|Beauty Tips for Sisters|
|Who Is Your Best Friend?|
|How to Concentrate|
In Your Prayers