Rafed English

The Impermanence of Worldly Life

The worldviews of unbelievers and believers are mutually exclusive. For example, unbelievers consider living life to the full as their primary purpose, for they will not be able to enjoy anything after they die. On the other hand, believers make good use of things in their everyday lives without considering these to be an end in themselves. Rather, they regard such things as a means to be grateful to God and to win His good pleasure.

Believers are very well aware of the impermanence of posh cars, grand houses, impressive gardens, valuable jewelry, beautiful people, and of everything else, for they know that the true originals are to be found in the eternal Paradise. God commands people not to be fooled by the temporary beauty of worldly things and not to become enslaved by them: To humanity the love of worldly appetites is painted in glowing colors: women and children, heaped-up mounds of gold and silver, horses with fine markings, and livestock and fertile farmland. All that is merely the enjoyment of the life of this world. The best homecoming is in the presence of God. (Qur'an, 3:14)

Know that the life of this world is merely a game and a diversion, ostentation, and a cause of boasting among yourselves and trying to outdo one another in wealth and children: like the plant-growth after rain that delights the cultivators but then withers. You see it turning yellow, and then it becomes broken stubble. In the Hereafter, there is terrible punishment, but also forgiveness, from God and His good pleasure. The life of this world is nothing but the enjoyment of delusion. (Qur'an, 57:20)

The Bible's Gospel of Mark explains that worldly worries and cravings, as well as material wealth, lead people away from God's path: Still others, like seed sown among thorns, hear the word. But the worries of this life, the deceitfulness of wealth, and the desires for other things come in and choke the word, making it unfruitful. Others, like seed sown on good soil, hear the word, accept it, and produce a crop - thirty, sixty, or even a hundred times what was sown. (Mark, 4:18-20) The Bible warns people not to dive into this world's temporary pleasures and that the love of this world causes hearts to harden. Various passages refer to these facts, as follows:

Be careful, or your hearts will be weighed down with dissipation, drunkenness, and the anxieties of life, and that day will close on you unexpectedly like a trap. For it will come upon all those who live on Earth. Be always on the watch. Pray... (Luke, 21:34-36) The world and its desires pass away, but the one who does the will of God lives forever. (1 John, 2:17) … For this world in its present form is passing away. (1 Corinthians, 7:31)

The Torah reveals that life on Earth is temporary, that the love of material wealth and devotion to the world is a grave mistake, and that believers should not let themselves be led astray:

Whoever loves money never has enough money, and whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with his income. This too is meaningless. As goods increase, so do those who consume them. And what benefit are they to the owner, except to feast his eyes on them? (Ecclesiastes, 5:10-11) We are aliens and strangers in your sight, as were all of our forefathers. Our days on Earth are like a shadow, without hope. (1 Chronicles, 29:15) Neither their silver nor their gold will be able to save them on the day of the LORD's wrath. (Zephaniah, 1:18)

Adapted from: "A Call for Unity" by: "Harun Yahya"

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