A Clarification regarding the Questioning on the Day of Judgement: Imam al-Shinqitee

In his book dedicated to clarifying difficult passages of the Qur’an and removing doubts concerning them, Imam Muhammad al-Ameen al-Shinqitee wrote the following in his section on surah al-A’araaf:

قال تعالى : < فَلَنَسْأَلَنَّ الَّذِينَ أُرْ‌سِلَ إِلَيْهِمْ وَلَنَسْأَلَنَّ الْمُرْ‌سَلِينَ > الاية . ـ

Allah said:

فَلَنَسْأَلَنَّ الَّذِينَ أُرْ‌سِلَ إِلَيْهِمْ وَلَنَسْأَلَنَّ الْمُرْ‌سَلِينَ

Then We will surely question those to whom [a message] was sent, and We will surely question the messengers. [7:6]

هذه الآية الكريمة تدل على أن الله يسأل جميع الناس يوم القيامة . ونظيرها قولة تعالى : < وَرَ‌بِّكَ لَنَسْأَلَنَّهُمْ أَجْمَعِينَ * عَمَّا كَانُوا يَعْمَلُونَ > ، وقوله : < وَقِفُوهُمْ ۖ إِنَّهُم مَّسْئُولُونَ > ، وقوله : < وَيَوْمَ يُنَادِيهِمْ فَيَقُولُ مَاذَا أَجَبْتُمُ الْمُرْ‌سَلِينَ > . ـ

This noble ayah indicates that Allah will question all of mankind on Yawm al-Qiyaamah. And its parallel is Allah’s statement:

فَوَرَ‌بِّكَ لَنَسْأَلَنَّهُمْ أَجْمَعِينَ * عَمَّا كَانُوا يَعْمَلُونَ

So by your Lord, We will surely question them all * About what they used to do. [15:92-93]

And His statement:

وَقِفُوهُمْ ۖ إِنَّهُم مَّسْئُولُونَ

And stop them; indeed, they are to be questioned. [37:24]

And His statement:

وَيَوْمَ يُنَادِيهِمْ فَيَقُولُ مَاذَا أَجَبْتُمُ الْمُرْ‌سَلِينَ

And [mention] the Day He will call them and say, “What did you answer the messengers?” [28:65]

وقد جاءت في آيات أخر تدل على خلاف ذلك  ، كقوله : <  فَيَوْمَئِذٍ لَّا يُسْأَلُ عَن ذَنبِهِ إِنسٌ وَلَا جَانٌّ > ، وكقوله : < وَلَا يُسْأَلُ عَن ذُنُوبِهِمُ الْمُجْرِ‌مُونَ > . ـ

And it has come in other ayaat that which indicates the contrary to that, such as His statement:

فَيَوْمَئِذٍ لَّا يُسْأَلُ عَن ذَنبِهِ إِنسٌ وَلَا جَانٌّ

Then on that Day none will be asked about his sin among men or jinn. [55:39]

And such as His statement:

وَلَا يُسْأَلُ عَن ذُنُوبِهِمُ الْمُجْرِ‌مُونَ

But the criminals, about their sins, will not be asked. [28:78]

والجواب عن هذا من ثلاثة أوجة : ـ

The answer to this comes from three angles:

الأول ـ وهو أوجهها ؛ لدلالة القرآن عليه ـ : هو أن السؤال قسمان : سؤال توبيخ وتقريع ، وأداته غالبا < لِمَا > . وسؤال استخبار واستعلام ، وأداته غالبا < هل > . فالمثبت هو السؤال التوبيخ والتقريع ، والمنفي هو السؤال الاستخبار والاستعلام . ـ

The first – and it is the most prominent of them, due to the Qur’anic evidences supporting it – is that  questioning is of two types: 1) questioning of rebuke and censure, and its particle is predominantly limaa [“why”]. And 2) questioning to inquire and seeking information, and its particle is predominantly hal [a yes/no question indicator]. So what is affirmed is that this [i.e. the ayah 7:6] is a questioning of rebuke and censure, and what is negated is that it is a question of inquiry and seeking information.

وجه دلالة القرآن على هذا : أن السؤال لهم المنصوص في القرآن كله توبيخ وتقريع : < وَقِفُوهُمْ ۖ إِنَّهُم مَّسْئُولُونَ * مَا لَكُمْ لَا تَنَاصَرُ‌ونَ > ، وقوله : < أَفَسِحْرٌ‌ هَـٰذَا أَمْ أَنتُمْ لَا تُبْصِرُ‌ونَ > ، وكقوله : < أَلَمْ يَأْتِكُمْ رُ‌سُلٌ مِّنكُمْ > ، وكقوله : < أَلَمْ يَأْتِكُمْ نَذِيرٌ‌ > ألى غير ذلك من الآيات . ـ

And from the angle of the Qur’anic evidence for this is that their being questioned as it is laid out in the Qur’an is entirely of rebuke and censure:

وَقِفُوهُمْ ۖ إِنَّهُم مَّسْئُولُونَ * مَا لَكُمْ لَا تَنَاصَرُ‌ونَ

And stop them; indeed, they are to be questioned. * [They will be asked], “What is with you? Why do you not help each other?” [37:24-25]

And His statement:

أَفَسِحْرٌ‌ هَـٰذَا أَمْ أَنتُمْ لَا تُبْصِرُ‌ونَ

Then is this magic, or do you not see? [52:15]

And such as His statement:

أَلَمْ يَأْتِكُمْ رُ‌سُلٌ مِّنكُمْ

Did there not come to you messengers from among you? [6:130]

And such as His statement:

أَلَمْ يَأْتِكُمْ نَذِيرٌ‌

Did there not come to you a warner? [67:8]

As well as other ayaat.

وسؤال الله للرسل : < مَاذَا أُجِبْتُمْ > لتوبيخ الذين كذبوهم ، كسؤال الموءودة : <  بِأَيِّ ذَنبٍ قُتِلَتْ > لتوبيخ قاتلها . ـ

And Allah’s questioning to His messengers:

مَاذَا أُجِبْتُمْ

What was the response you received? [5:109]

– this question functions as a rebuke to those who denied them, like His question about the infant girl buried alive:

بِأَيِّ ذَنبٍ قُتِلَتْ

For what sin she was killed? [81:9]

which functions as a rebuke to her killer.

الوجه الثني : أن في القيامة مواقف متعدد ، ففي بعضها يسألون ـ وفي بعضها لا يسألون . ـ

The second angle is that there are numerous stations during the Yawm al-Qiyaamah, so during some of them they will be questioned, and during some of them they will not be questioned.

الوجه الثالث : هو ما ذكره الحليمي من أن إثبات السؤال محمول على السؤال عن التوحيد وتصديق الرسل ، وعدم السؤال محمول على ما يستلزمه الإقرار بالنبوات من شرائع الدين وفروعه . ويدل لهذا قوله تعالى : < فَيَقُولُ مَاذَا أَجَبْتُمُ الْمُرْ‌سَلِينَ > . والعلم عند الله تعالى . ـ

The third angle is what al-Haleemi (d. 436 H) mentioned that the presence of questioning implies questioning regarding al-Tawheed and affirmation of the messengers, while the absence of questioning carries the meaning of entailing that person’s acknowledgement of the prophetic information regarding the divine legislation of the deen and its supplementary aspects. And this is indicated by His statement:

فَيَقُولُ مَاذَا أَجَبْتُمُ الْمُرْ‌سَلِينَ

“What did you answer the messengers?” [28:65]

And the knowledge is with Allah.

[Dafa’ Eehaam al-Idhtiraab ‘an ayaat al-Kitaab pg. 143-144]

See also: Will the Disbelievers speak on the Day of Judgement?: Imam al-Shinqitee

See also: Does the Qur’an use metaphorical language? – Tafsir al-Shinqitee

See also: Whoever is guided or errs, it is only for or against himself: Tafsir al-Shinqitee

See also: The Reckoning for the Believers will End in the Middle of the Day: Imam al-Shinqitee

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2 thoughts on “A Clarification regarding the Questioning on the Day of Judgement: Imam al-Shinqitee

  1. Pingback: Will the Disbelievers speak on the Day of Judgement?: Imam al-Shinqitee | Tulayhah

  2. Pingback: The Reckoning for the Believers will End in the Middle of the Day: Imam al-Shinqitee | Tulayhah

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