Every soul will taste death, and you will only be given your [full] compensation on the Day of Resurrection. So he who is drawn away from the Fire and admitted to Paradise has attained [his desire]. And what is the life of this world except the enjoyment of delusion.
You will surely be tested in your possessions and in yourselves. And you will surely hear from those who were given the Scripture before you and from those who associate others with Allah much abuse. But if you are patient and fear Allah – indeed, that is of the matters [worthy] of determination.
Chapter 3 ‘Āli ̀Imrān : Verses 185-186
Every Soul Shall Taste Death
Allah issues a general and encompassing statement that every living soul shall taste death. In another statement, Allah said,
(Whatsoever is on it (the earth) will perish. And the Face of your Lord full of majesty and honor will remain forever) (55:26,27).
Therefore, Allah Alone is the Ever-Living Who never dies, while the Jinn, mankind and angels, including those who carry Allah’s Throne, shall die. The Irresistible One and Only, will alone remain for ever and ever, remaining Last, as He was the First. This Ayah comforts all creation, since every soul that exists on the earth shall die. When the term of this life comes to an end and the sons of Adam no longer have any new generations, and thus this world ends, Allah will command that the Day of Resurrection commence. Allah will then recompense the creation for their deeds, whether minor or major, many or few, big or small. Surely, Allah will not deal unjustly with anyone, even the weight of an atom, and this is why He said,
And only on the Day of Resurrection shall you be paid your wages in full).
Who Shall Gain Ultimate Victory
(And whoever is moved away from the Fire and admitted to Paradise, he indeed is successful.) meaning, whoever is kept away from the Fire, saved from it and entered into Paradise, will have achieved the ultimate success.
Ibn Abi Hatim recorded that Abu Hurayrah said that the Messenger of Allah said,
(A place in Paradise as small as that which is occupied by a whip is better than the world and whatever is on its surface. Read if you will),
(And whoever is removed away from the Fire and admitted to Paradise, he indeed is successful). This was collected in the Two Sahihs, but using another chain of narration and without the addition (the Ayah.) Abu Hatim Ibn Hibban recorded it in his Sahih without the addition as did Al-Hakim in his Mustadrak.
(The life of this world is only the enjoyment of deception. ) belittling the value of this life and degrading its importance. This life is short, little and finite, just as Allah said,
(Nay, you prefer the life of this world. Although the Hereafter is better and more lasting.) (87:16,17), and,(And whatever you have been given is an enjoyment of the life of (this) world and its adornment, and that (Hereafter) which is with Allah is better and will remain forever) (28:60). A Hadith states,
(By Allah! This life, compared to the Hereafter, is just as insignificant as when one of you dips his finger in the sea; let him contemplate what his finger will come back with.)
Qatadah commented on Allah’s statement,
(The life of this world is only the enjoyment of deception.) “Life is a delight. By Allah, other than Whom there is no deity, it will soon fade away from its people. Therefore, take obedience to Allah from this delight, if you can. Verily, there is no power except from Allah.”
The Believer is Tested and Hears Grieving Statements from the Enemy
(You shall certainly be tried and tested in your wealth and properties and in yourselves), just as He said in another Ayah,
(And certainly, We shall test you with something of fear, hunger, loss of wealth, lives and fruits) ﴿2:155﴾.
Therefore, the believer shall be tested, in his wealth, himself, his offspring and family. The believer shall be tested according to the degree of his faith, and when his faith is stronger, the test is larger.
Allah said to the believers upon their arrival at Al-Madinah, before Badr, while comforting them against the harm they suffered from the People of the Scriptures and the polytheists;
(but if you persevere patiently, and have Taqwa, then verily, that will be a determining factor in all affairs.)
Therefore, Allah commanded the believers to be forgiving, patient and forbearing until He brought His awaited aid.
Al-Bukhari recorded that Usamah bin Zayd said that Allah’s Messenger rode a donkey with a saddle covered by a velvet sheet and let Usamah ride behind him (on the donkey). The Prophet wanted to visit Sa`d bin `Ubadah in Bani Al-Harith bin Al-Khazraj, and this occurred before the battle of Badr. The Prophet passed by a gathering in which `Abdullah bin Ubayy bin Salul was sitting, before `Abdullah bin Ubayy became Muslim. That gathering was made up of various Muslims as well as Mushriks, who worshipped the idols, and some Jews. `Abdullah bin Rawahah was sitting in that gathering. When the Prophet reached `Abdullah bin Ubayy, the donkey caused some sand to fall on the group. Then, `Abdullah bin Ubayy covered his nose with his robe and said, `Do not fill us with sand.’ The Messenger of Allah greeted the gathering with Salam, called them to Allah and recited some of the Qur’an to them. `Abdullah bin Ubayy said, `O fellow! No other speech is better than what you said, if it was true! However, do not bother us in our gatherings. Go back to your place and whoever came to you, narrate your stories to him.’ `Abdullah bin Rawahah said, `Rather, O Messenger of Allah! Attend our gatherings for we like that.’ The Muslims, Mushriks and Jews then cursed each other, and they almost fought with each other. The Prophet tried to calm them down, until they finally settled. The Prophet rode his donkey and went to Sa`d bin `Ubadah, saying, `O Sa`d! Have you heard what Abu Hubbab said (meaning `Abdullah bin Ubayy) He said such and such things. ‘ Sa`d said, `O Messenger of Allah! Forgive and pardon him. By Allah, Who sent down the Book to you, Allah brought us the truth that you came with at a time when the people of this city almost appointed him king. When Allah changed all that with the truth that He gave you, he choked on it, and this is the reason behind the behavior you saw from him.’ The Messenger of Allah forgave him. Indeed, the Messenger of Allah and his Companions used to forgive the Mushriks and the People of the Scriptures, just as Allah commanded them, and they used to tolerate the harm that they suffered. Allah said,
(and you shall certainly hear much that will grieve you from those who received the Scripture before you (Jews and Christians) and from those who ascribe partners to Allah;) ﴿3:186﴾, and,
(Many of the People of the Scripture (Jews and Christians) wish that they could turn you away as disbelievers after you have believed, out of envy from their own selves, even after the truth has become manifest unto them. But forgive and overlook, till Allah brings His command) ﴿2:109﴾.
The Prophet used to implement the pardon that Allah commanded him until He gave His command (to fight the disbelievers). When the Messenger fought at Badr, and Allah killed, by his hand, the leaders of the disbelievers from Quraysh, `Abdullah bin Ubayy bin Salul and the Mushriks and idol worshippers who were with him said, `This matter has prevailed,’ and they gave their pledge to the Prophet and became Muslims.”
Therefore, every person who stands for truth, enjoins righteousness and forbids evil, will be harmed in some manner. In such cases, there is no cure better than being patient in Allah’s cause, trusting in Him and returning to Him.