Part 4 – Ayah Number 3 of Surat Al-Fatihah
After Allah (swt) introduces Himself by His proper name and tells us that He is our Master who loves and cares for us like no one else, he rightfully claims his sovereignty over the Day of Judgement. We come to the next ayah of Surat al-Fatihah:
Maaliki yawmid deen
“Sovereign of the Day of Recompense.”
Malik means “master” or “sovereign.” Allah (swt) is the Master of the Day of Judgment. What does that mean to us?
“The fact that Allah alone will be the Sovereign of the Day of Recompense,” says Dr Islahi, “means that He alone shall possess all power and control that day; all will be subservient to His will; none shall dare to speak without His permission. He shall be the sole judge, deciding affairs, punishing the guilty, and rewarding the good and the righteous.” (72)
This is further elaborated in other ayat of the Quran:
“[All] sovereignty that Day is for Allah ; He will judge between them. So they who believed and did righteous deeds will be in the Gardens of Pleasure.” (22:56)
“The Day they come forth nothing concerning them will be concealed from Allah. To whom belongs [all] sovereignty this Day? To Allah , the One, the Prevailing.” (40:16)
Imagine all human beings being herded together. Angels are standing in a line with Jibreel (as) at the head of them. And everyone is silent. “The Day that the Spirit and the angels will stand in rows, they will not speak except for one whom the Most Merciful permits, and he will say what is correct.” (78:38)
The only people who are allowed to speak are those given permission by Allah.
Din in this context means “recompense”. You get what you deserve. “The term din in the sense of ‘recompense covers both its negative and positive aspects: (i) a reward for good, and (ii) a punishment for evil and wickedness.”
We will be dealt with on the Day of Judgment in two ways – with justice or with mercy. If we are disqualified from receiving mercy from ar-Rahman ar-Rahim, the only thing left for us is justice, to get exactly what we deserve, nothing more, nothing less.
Now, think about it, what do we deserve? We deserve punishment for all the sins we committed and we deserve reward for all the good deeds we did.
Allah’s Messenger (sa) once said to Aisha (ra), “None will be called to account on the Day of Resurrection, but will be ruined.”
Aisha (ra) asked him, “O Allah’s Messenger, hasn’t Allah said:
‘Then as for him who will be given his record in his right hand, he surely will receive an easy reckoning? (84:7-8)
“That (Verse) means only the presentation of the accounts, but anybody whose account (record) is questioned on the Day of Resurrection, will surely be punished.” (Bukhari 6537)
The danger is imminent. If we are dealt in terms of what we deserve, then we’re done with.
“Indeed, We have warned you of a near punishment on the Day when a man will observe what his hands have put forth and the disbeliever will say, ‘Oh, I wish that I were dust!’” (78:40)
But what disqualifies us from receiving Allah’s mercy and leaves us only with His justice?
“If you only have Ar-Rahman ar-Rahim,” explains Ustadh Nouman, “then people will take advantage…. We want Allah’s mercy, we want His love on Judgment Day. But if we take advantage of it, He doesn’t take lightly to that…. ‘Don’t you think, for one second, that you will get to just use Allah’s love and mercy to take advantage of Him and do whatever you want. Don’t start thinking like that because that will disqualify you from Allah’s mercy.”
Now, if you admit that Allah deserves all praise and thanks, that He is our caretaker and master, and that He loves and cares for us, you will automatically form the conclusion that this world can’t be the end. There must be a yawm ad-din. Otherwise, how could all the wrong done in this world be recompensed? How would a Praiseworthy God let people like Hitler get away with murdering millions of people?
“The implication is clear: having seen so many obvious signs of Divine providence, compassion and justice everywhere in this universe, who except an obstinately unjust person can refuse to acknowledge any part of this most obvious truth about the nature of this life?” (Islahi 72)
These first three ayat introduce us to Allah. “What every human being needs to know about God,” claims Ustadh Nouman, “is in these three ayats.” Ponder on this and see if you agree.
Quiz Question: Now that we know so much about Allah (swt), what should our relationship with Him be like?
Answer in the next article, in sha Allah.