Cont’d from page 1
The second verse of Sura 1 (The Key) should inspire our thinking.
[1:2] Praise be to GOD, Lord of the universe.
The Arabic word “Rabb” (translated as Lord) is very comprehensive. It means the Cherisher, Sustainer, Maintainer and includes the role of creation, security and the complete procedure of evolution from conception to birth and from the cradle to the grave.
This awareness should principally instill a feeling of reassurance in us that it is God alone who feeds us, cares for us, protects us from dangers and heals us from illness. It should promote love and kindness for all His creatures.
One and the same God,
the same message
God sent Prophets and Messengers to every community from time to time to support our natural belief and our inborn inclination to worship Him alone. It also reinforces the Divine Truth in the daily signs God reveals. The basic laws remain the same as in the Torah and the Gospel – the laws against murder, stealing and adultery are the same in most societies. The Quran unites all Submitters:
[2:62] Surely, those who believe, those who are Jewish, the Christians, and the converts; anyone who (1) believes in GOD, and (2) believes in the Last Day, and (3) leads a righteous life, will receive their recompense from their Lord. They have nothing to fear, nor will they grieve.
[5:66] If only they would uphold the Torah and the Gospel, and what is sent down to them herein from their Lord, they would be showered with blessings from above them and from beneath their feet. Some of them are righteous, but many of them are evildoers.
Throughout our lives from childhood till we die, God shows us signs no matter whom or where we may be till it becomes clear that there is only one True God. If we are honest with ourselves, reject all false gods and seek to please God alone, the route will be made easy for us. However, if we continuously reject God’s signs and idolize or worship our egos or anything else, it will be more difficult to return.
The Quran, God’s Final Revelation, teaches us that all of humankind has the recognition of God imprinted on our souls which is part of the nature with which we are created. Basically, weare born with instinctive knowledge about God:
[7:172-3] Recall that your Lord summoned all the descendants of Adam, and had them bear witness for themselves: “Am I not your Lord?” They all said, “Yes. We bear witness.” Thus, you cannot say on the Day of Resurrection, “We were not aware of this.” Nor can you say, “It was our parents who practiced idolatry, and we simply followed in their footsteps. Will You punish us because of what others have innovated?”
There are so many sects, cults, religions, philosophies and movements in the world – all claim to be the right path to God. All false religions have one basic concept with regards to God that some specific human is God, that Nature is God, that God is a fabrication of one’s imagination or that God is a bed-time story.
God says in the Quran [12:40] You do not worship beside Him except innovations that you have made up, you and your parents. GOD has never authorized such idols. All ruling belongs to GOD, and He has ruled that you shall not worship except Him. This is the perfect religion, but most people do not know.
People will argue that all religions teach good things (they are all paths to God)
so then why should it matter which one we follow. The answer is that all false religions teach the greatest evil – the abomination of idol worship, the gravest sin we can ever commit.
The purpose of our existence and the reasons for our birth is explained in the Quran:
[51:56] I did not create the jinns and the humans except to worship Me alone.
[67:2] The One who created death and life for the purpose of distinguishing those among you who would do better. He is the Almighty, the Forgiving.
Consequently, the worship of anything other than God is the root of idol worship and this is the only unforgivable sin if maintained until death. This is not a simple outlook but a revealed fact.
[4:48] GOD does not forgive idolatry, but He forgives lesser offenses for whomever He wills. Anyone who sets up idols beside GOD, has forged a horrendous offense.
[4:116] GOD does not forgive idol worship (if maintained until death), and He forgives lesser offenses for whomever He wills. Anyone who idolizes any idol beside GOD has strayed far astray.
Since the outcome of any false religion is grave, the true religion of God must be collectively understandable and attainable and not restricted to any people, place and time. There cannot be conditions like baptism, acceptance of any person as Savior etc. for a believer to enter Paradise. Within the fundamental code of Islam and its description (complete surrender and submission to the Will of God) lies the source of Islam’s universality.