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Interpretation of Sura Maryam (Mary) - Verses 71-72

71. " And (there is) not one of you but shall come to it (Hell). This is, with your Lord, a fixed decree."

72. " Then We shall rescue those who kept from evil, and leave the unjust therein on their knees."


The couple of verses mentioned in the above, also continue the discussion about the specialties of Resurrection and the people's rewards and retributions.

At first, it has pointed to a matter about which most people may surprise to hear. It says:

" And (there is) not one of you but shall come to it (Hell). …"

This is a certain matter and a decisive command with your Lord Who has decreed it. The verse says:

"…This is, with your Lord, a fixed decree."

" Then We shall rescue those who kept from evil, and leave the unjust therein on their knees."

Commenting on these two verses, it must be remarked that all human beings, with no exception, will enter Hell, whether they are good doers or evildoers, but Hell will be cold and safe for the good-doers, in the same manner that the fire of Numrud was for Abraham. The reason of it is that Fire of Hell does not have any general resemblance to them. It seems the Fire gets away from them and runs away, and wherever they are, it dies out. But, the people of Hell, who correlate to Hell-fire, like an inflammable material when reaches a fire, will immediately inflame.

In fact, seeing Hell and its chastisements will be a preparation for believers that they enjoy the utmost pleasure from the bounties of Heaven, and on the contrary, the people of Hell, by seeing the safety of the people of Heaven, feel their punishment more painful.

Some Islamic Traditions

1. It has been narrated that some one asked Jabir-ibn-'Abdillah 'Ansari about the meaning of this verse. He pointed with his two fingers to his two ears and said: "I heard a matter from the Prophet (p.b.u.h.) by these ears of mine both of which may become deaf if I tell a lie. He (p.b.u.h.) said: '/wariduha/ (come to it (Hell)) means 'enter into it'. There will be no good doer and no evildoer but he will enter into it (Hell). Then it (Fire) will be cold and safe for the believers, the same as it was for Abraham; so that 'Fire' or 'Hell' (Jabir was doubtful) will cry because of its coldness. Then Allah will rescue those who kept from evil, and leave the unjust therein on their knees'." 75

But, the compiler of the commentary of Atyab-ul-Bayan, upon the commentary of this verse, says:

It seems, and there are many Islamic tradition on it, and is among the self-evident knowledge of the religion that the question of 'Sirat?' (path, way) is the 'bridge' of Hell, through which the people of Heaven must pass. Coming to this path is the same as entering into Hell and passing from it is a rescue.

Thus, the meaning of "And (there is) not one of you but shall come to it (Hell)" is 'entering on the Path'.

There is an expressive saying upon the bridge of the Path (S?irat) in Islamic traditions which denotes there is a bridge over Hell leading to Paradise which is thinner than a hair, sharper than the blade of a sword. This meaning is another evidence for this commentary, and it has been verified and supported by a lot of the commentators of two great sects of Islam.

2. Another tradition narrated from the Prophet (p.b.u.h.) indicates that he said: "On the Day of Judgment, Hell-Fire will tell the believer 'Pass quickly, O' believer! Verily your light has extinguished my flame'."

3. It has been cited in Tafsir-i-Tabari: "One day, when 'Abdullah-ibn-Rawah?ah was sick, he was crying and his wife, seeing him, began weeping. 'Abdullah asked her why she was weeping. She answered it was because of his weeping. 'Abdullah said that he was crying for this word of Allah Who said: 'And (there is) not one of you but shall come to it (Hell)'. Our arrival is certain, but 'Abdullah does not know whether he will rescue or not."

4. The Messenger of Allah (p.b.u.h.) said: "On the Day of Hereafter, all human being (good and evil) will enter Hell, but Fire will not harm the believers, like Abraham for whom the fire became cold."

1- At-Tafsir-ul-MuNur, p. 145; Zad-ul-Masir, Commentary, vol. 5, p. 256; Rauh-ul-Ma'ani by 'Alusi, vol. 16, p. 133; Tafsir-i-Safi, p. 290, Tafsir-i-Jami'-ul-Bayan, p. 110, Tafsir-i-Mazhari, vol. 6, p. 112; Tafsir-i-Jawami'-ul-Jami', narrated by Ibn-Mas'ud, Hassan Basri, and Ibn-Abbas, Tafsir-i-Th?'alibi, vol. 3, p. 17;

2- Nur-uth-Thaqalayn, vol. 3, p. 353 and vol. 5, p.572

3- Recorded in the most commentary books of the Sunnite

Therefore, the verse under discussion, which announces that the arrival of all into Hell is certain, does not contrast the verses which indicate believers are far from Hell, because, on one side they enter Hell, and, on another side, by the grace of Allah, no harm reaches them.

Moreover, Allamah Tabatabaie cites in Al-Mizan: there will be none of the righteous and the unjust but soon will be on the edge and precipice of Fire, then Allah will rescue the pious ones and will let the unjust remain in it.

O' Allah! By Your Grace and Mercy, and by the grandeur of the rank of the Prophet (p.b.u.h.) and Ahl-ul-Bayt (a.s.) with You, count us not among the people of Hell, and assign no Fire upon us, but by Your beneficence and Your forgiveness count us among the people of Paradise!


75. Nur-uth-Thaqalayn, vol. 3, p. 353

Adopted from the book : "The Light of the Holy Qur'an; Interpretation of Surah Maryam" by : "Sayyid Kamal Faghih Imani and a Group of Muslim Scholars"

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