man is not called to account and judged in fitting fashion while in this world, it follows that he must proceed to a Supreme Tribunal and a final felicity.
The Gate of Promise and Threat,
the Manifestation of the Names of Beautiful and Glorious.
Is it at all possible that the Maker of this world, the Possessor of Absolute Knowledge and Absolute Power, should not fulfil the oft-repeated promise and threat that has been proclaimed unanimously by all the prophets and been witnessed in unison by all the veracious and the saints, and thus display weakness and ignorance? God forbid! All that is implied by His promise and threat is not at all difficult for His power to fulfil; it is extremely simple and easy. It is as easy for Him as bringing back next spring the countless beings of last spring, in part identically,1 in part in simile.2 It is our need, the need of everything, His own need and the need of His dominical sovereignty, that He should fulfil His promise. For Him to break His promise would be contrary to the dignity of His power, and it would contradict the comprehensiveness of His knowledge. For the breaking of a promise can arise only from ignorance or impotence.
O denier! Do you know how foolish a crime you are committing with your unbelief and denial? Paying heed to your own lying fancy, your delirious intellect, your deceptive soul, you reject as a liar One Who in no way can be compelled to the breaking of His promise, Whose glory and stature can in no way admit the breaking of His word, and Whose truthfulness and veracity are attested by all visible matters and objects! Despite your infinite pettiness, you are committing a crime of infinitely great proportions. Without doubt you deserve great and eternal punishment. According to certain narrations, the fact that the teeth of some of the people of Hell will be as big as a mountain3 will serve as an indication of the magnitude of their crime. O denier, you are like a traveller who closes his eyes to the sunlight and looks instead at the fantasy in his own mind. His imagination wishes to illumine the awesome path in front of him with the light proceeding from his mind’s lamp that in reality is no stronger than a glow-worm. Whatever has been promised by God Almighty, Whose veracious words are these beings we see and Whose truthful, eloquent signs are the processes of nature, He will of a surety fulfil. He will establish a Supreme Tribunal, and bestow an ultimate bliss.
Like trees and the roots of grasses.
Like leaves and fruits.
Muslim, Janna, 44; Tirmidhi, Jahannam, 3; Ibn Maja, Zuhd, 38; Musnad, ii, 26, 328, 334.