(1. Nay! I swear by the Day of Resurrection.) (2. And nay! I swear by An-Nafs Al-Lawwamah.) (3. Does man think that We shall not assemble his bones) (4. Yes, We are able to put together in perfect order the tips of his fingers.) (5. Nay! Man desires to break out ahead of himself.) (6. He asks: “When will be this Day of Resurrection”) (7. So, when Bariqa the sight.) (8. And the moon will be eclipsed.) (9. And the sun and moon will be joined together.) (10. On that Day man will say: “Where (is the refuge) to flee”) (11. No! There is no refuge!) (12. Unto your Lord will be the place of rest that Day.) (13. On that Day man will be informed of what he sent forward, and what he left behind.) (14. Nay! Man will be well informed about himself,) (15. Though he may put forth his excuses.)
In this Surah, Allah swears upon something that is being negated by those Kuffar people (disbelievers). For that reason, Allah uses the word “laa” before the oath to emphasize the negation (that the disbelievers negate the existence of Hereafter and the Day of Resurrection).
As Imam Ibn Kathir said that the Surah is actually about tackling the disbelievers’ denial about the Day of Resurrection. The disbelievers believe that if one dies, than he/she will not be able to be assembled (live again) to be judged in the Hereafter.
And nay! I swear by An-Nafs Al-Lawwamah
In this Surah, Allah swears upon two things; that are the Day of Resurrection and An-Nafs Lawwamah. We might have been clear about what is the Day of Resurrection, but An-Nafs Lawwamah needs to be elaborated, indeed.
Imam Hasan Al-Bashri – a prominent Tabi’in – interpreted An-Nafs Lawwamah as, “Every Mukmin (believer) blames himself. A believer (in the Day of Resurrection) will questions himself with questions like ‘What did I intend by my statement What did I intend by my eating What did I intend in what I said to myself.’ However, the sinner proceeds ahead and he does not blame himself.”
Imam Mujahid also interpreted the second Ayah (verse) of this Surah as saying that the Mukmin (believers) are sorry for what he missed (of good deeds) and they blame themselves for it. Once again, this habit is totally different from those Kuffar people who continue to do bad deeds.
Does man think that We shall not assemble his bones
Yes, We are able to put together in perfect order the tips of his fingers.
Nay! Man desires to break out ahead of himself
He asks: “When will be this Day of Resurrection”
Well, surely the disbelievers will ask, “When will be this Day of Resurrection?” This question does also refer to the ‘logic-minded’ people’s statement asking “Then proves it now!” Allah knows well that such a question is not aimed at looking for the truth, but another denial to the Day of Resurrection. This is inline with Imam Ibn Kathir’s statement that this “question is only a question of denying its occurrence, and rejecting its existence.” See also Surah Saba’ Ayah 29-30.
Based on this question of the disbelievers, Allah says in the next Ayah:
7. So, when Bariqa the sight.) (8. And the moon will be eclipsed.) (9. And the sun and moon will be joined together .
On that Day man will say: “Where (is the refuge) to flee”
No! There is no refuge! Unto your Lord will be the place of rest that Day
In reference to this, Ibn Mas’ud, Ibn Abbas, Said Ibn Jubair and other prominent companions of the Prophet Muhammad said, “There will be no salvation.” In another Surah (An-Najm: 42) Allah says, “And that to your Lord is the End.” In another Surah (Ash-Shura: 47) Allah says, “Answer the Call of your Lord before there comes from Allah a Day which cannot be averted. You will have no refuge on that Day nor there will be for you any denying.”
Not only will the disbelievers be panic in that day, but the Mukmin (believers) too. All people, no matter Mukmin or Kuffar, they will all get panic in that day. However, the Mukmin people will soon remember that this is the Day of Resurrection. And soon after they remember this, they will find tranquility because the Mukmin people finally find that Allah’s promise is true.
On that Day man will be informed of what he sent forward, and what he left behind
Well, in Islam, there is a belief that all one did in the world are recorded. For that reason, a true Mukmin (believer) would behave carefully, full of consideration whether or not something is good or bad in Islam. They eat halal foods, and prevent from eating haram food, etc.
In the Day of Resurrection, the record will be revealed. Nothing left behind because it is a very very comprehensive book. In this Ayah, Allah says, “On that Day man will be informed of what he sent forward, and what he left behind.”
In another Ayah (Al-Kahfi: 49), Allah says, “And they will find all that they did, placed before them, and your Lord treats no one with injustice.”
Nay! Man will be well informed about himself
In this Day of Judgment, people’s mouths are not able to speak. All parts of people’s bodies will speak – by the Power of Allah – about what they did in the world. Ibn Abbas interpreted this as, “His hearing, his sight, his two hands, his two legs and his limbs.” All these parts of the body – according to Imam Qatadah – will be “a witness against himself (people).”
Finally, human has no capability of arguing about the motives of their bad deeds they committed in the world. This can be seen in the next Ayah where Allah says:
Though he may put forth his excuses
About this Ayah, Imam Ibn Kathir said, “This means, even though he argues in defense of it, he is a witness against it.”
About this Ayah, Imam Qatadah said, “his excuses.) “Even though he will try to make false excuses on that Day, they will not be accepted from him
About this Ayah, Imam As-Suddi said, “This means his argument.”
Finally, to end the discussion about this, I will quote Allah’s statement in Surah Al-Mujadilah Ayah 18 where Allah says,
(18. On the Day when Allah will resurrect them all together; then they will swear to Him as they swear to you. And they think that they have something. Verily, they are liars!) (19. The Shaytan has overpowered them. So he has made them forget the remembrance of Allah. They are the party of Shaytan. Verily, it is the party of Shaytan that will be the losers!) (20. Those who oppose Allah and His Messenger, they will be among those most humiliated.)