The Last Hour and its Portents

I take refuge with Allaah, the Exalted, from the accursed devil.

بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَـنِ الرَّحِيمِ

Bismillah-ir-Rahman-ir-Raheem: In the name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful.

Welcome to my blog and praise the Magnificent Lord as you enter: Allahu Akbar: Allah is the Greatest .

May the Peace and Blessings of Allah Azza wa Jal, our Lord Glorified and Praised be He, be upon our beloved  Prophet, his Family, and Companions.

The Last Hour and its Portents.

يَسْـَلُونَكَ عَنِ السَّاعَةِ أَيَّانَ مُرْسَـهَا قُلْ إِنَّمَا عِلْمُهَا عِنْدَ رَبِّي لاَ يُجَلِّيهَا لِوَقْتِهَآ إِلاَّ هُوَ ثَقُلَتْ فِى السَّمَـوَتِ وَالاٌّرْضِ لاَ تَأْتِيكُمْ إِلاَّ بَغْتَةً يَسْـَلُونَكَ كَأَنَّكَ حَفِىٌّ عَنْهَا قُلْ إِنَّمَا عِلْمُهَا عِندَ اللَّهِ وَلَـكِنَّ أَكْثَرَ النَّاسِ لاَ يَعْلَمُونَ

(187. They ask you about the Hour (Day of Resurrection): “When will be its appointed time” Say: “The knowledge thereof is with my Lord (Alone). None can reveal its time but He. Heavy is its burden through the heavens and the earth. It shall not come upon you except all of a sudden.” They ask you as if you have a good knowledge of it. Say: “The knowledge thereof is with Allah (Alone), but most of mankind know not.”)

Surah 7 Al Araf Verse 187

Tafsir Ibn Kathir

Allah said here,

(They ask you about the Hour), just as He said in another Ayah,

(People ask you concerning the Hour) (33:63). It was said that this Ayah was revealed about the Quraysh or the Jews, although it appears that it was about the Quraysh, because this Ayah was revealed in Makkah. The Quraysh used to ask about the Last Hour, because they used to deny it and discount its coming. For instance, Allah said in another Ayah,

(And they say: “When will be this promise (the torment or the Day of Resurrection), if you speak the truth”) (10:48), and,

(Those who believe not therein seek to hasten it, while those who believe are fearful of it, and know that it is the very truth. Verily, those who dispute concerning the Hour are certainly in error far away) (42:18). Allah said here (that the Quraysh asked),

(“When will be its appointed time”) in reference to its commencement, according to `Ali bin Abi Talhah who reported this from Ibn `Abbas. They asked about the Hour’s appointed term and when the end of this world will begin;

(Say: “The knowledge thereof is with my Lord (Alone). None can reveal its time but He.”) Allah commanded His Messenger that when asked about the appointed term of the Last Hour, he referred its knowledge to Allah, the Exalted. Only Allah knows the Last Hour’s appointed term and when it will certainly occur, and none besides Him has this knowledge,

(Heavy is its burden through the heavens and the earth) `Abdur-Razzaq narrated that Ma`mar said that Qatadah commented on this Ayah,

(Heavy is its burden through the heavens and the earth) “Its knowledge is heavy on the residents of the heavens and earth, they do not have knowledge in it.” Also, Ma`mar said that Al-Hasan commented on this Ayah, “When the Last Hour comes, it will be heavy on the residents of the heavens and earth.” Ad-Dahhak said that Ibn `Abbas explained this Ayah,

(Heavy is its burden through the heavens and the earth, ) saying, “All creatures will suffer its heaviness on the Day of Resurrection.” Ibn Jurayj also said about this Ayah,

(Heavy is its burden through the heavens and the earth.) “When it commences, the heavens will be torn, the stars will scatter all over, the sun will be wound round (thus losing its light), the mountains will be made to pass away and all of which Allah spoke of will occur. This is the meaning of its burden being heavy.” As-Suddi said that,

(Heavy is its burden through the heavens and the earth) means, its knowledge is hidden in the heavens and earth, and none, not even a close angel or a sent Messenger has knowledge of its appointed time.

(It shall not come upon you except all of a sudden) indicating that the Hour will start all of a sudden, while they are unaware. Qatadah said, “Allah has decided that,

(It shall not come upon you except all of a sudden.) He then said, “We were informed that Allah’s Prophet said,

The Hour will start (suddenly) for the people while one is mending his watering hole, giving water to his cattle, setting his goods in the market or lowering his scale and raising it (selling and buying).”’ Al-Bukhari recorded that Abu Hurayrah said that the Messenger of Allah said,

(The Hour will not commence until the sun rises from the west. When it rises (from the west) and the people see it, then, all people will believe. However, this is when faith does not benefit a soul that did not believe beforehand nor earned good in faith. The Hour will (all of a sudden) commence while two men have spread a garment between them, and they will neither have time to conclude the transaction nor to fold the garment. The Hour will commence after a man milked his animal, but he will not have time to drink it. The Hour will start when a man is making his watering hole (for his animals), but will not have time to make use of the pool. And the Hour will commence while a man has raised his hand with a bite to his mouth, but will not eat it.) Al-`Awfi said that Ibn `Abbas commented on the Ayah,

(They ask you as if you have good knowledge of it.) “As if you have good relations and friendship with them!” Ibn `Abbas said, “When the people (pagans of Quraysh) asked the Prophet about the Last Hour, they did so in a way as if Muhammad was their friend! Allah revealed to him that its knowledge is with Him Alone and He did not inform a close angel or Messenger of it.” The correct explanation for this Ayah is, as narrated from Mujahid, through Ibn Abi Najih,

(They ask you as if you have Hafi of it.) means, `as if you had asked about its time and so its knowledge is with you.’ Allah said,

(Say: “The knowledge thereof is with Allah (Alone), but most of mankind know not.”) When Jibril came in the shape of a bedouin man to teach the people matters of their religion, he sat next to the Messenger of Allah asking him as if to learn. Jibril asked the Messenger about Islam, then about Iman (faith) then about Ihsan (Excellence in the religion). He asked next, “When will the Hour start” Allah’s Messenger said,

(He who is asked about it has no more knowledge of it than the questioner.) Therefore, the Prophet was saying, `I have no more knowledge in it than you (O Jibril), nor does anyone have more knowledge in it than anyone else.’ The Prophet then recited the Ayah,

(Verily, Allah, with Him (Alone) is the knowledge of the Hour.) (31:34) In another narration, Jibril asked the Prophet about the portents of the Hour, and the Prophet mentioned them. The Prophet also said in this narration,

(Five, their knowledge is only with Allah) then recited this Ayah (31:34). In response to the Prophet’s answers after each question, Jibril would say, “You have said the truth.” This made the Companions wonder about this questioner who would ask a question and attest to every answer he was given. When Jibril went away, the Messenger of Allah said to the Companions,

(This is Jibril, he came to teach you matters of your religion.) In yet another narration, the Prophet commented,

(I recognized him (Jibril) in every shape he came to me in, except this one.) Muslim recorded that `Aishah, may Allah be pleased with her, said; “When the bedouins used to come to the Prophet , they used to ask him about the Hour. The Prophet would answer them, while pointing at the youngest person among them,

(If this (young man) lives, he will not become old before your Hour starts.) The Prophet meant the end of their life that introduces them to the life in Barzakh, which is between this life and the Hereafter. Muslim recorded that Anas said that a man asked Allah’s Messenger about the Hour, and the Messenger answered,

(If this young boy lives, it might be that he will not become old before the Hour starts.) Only Muslim collected this Hadith. Jabir bin `Abdullah said, “I heard the Messenger of Allah saying, one month before he died,

(You keep asking me about the Hour, when its knowledge is with Allah. I swear by Allah that there is no living soul on the face of the earth now will be alive a hundred years from now.) Muslim collected this Hadith. A similar Hadith is recorded in Two Sahihs from Ibn `Umar, but he commented, “The Messenger of Allah meant that his generation will be finished by that time reach its appointed term.” Imam Ahmad recorded that Ibn Mas`ud said that the Prophet said,

(During the night of Isra’, I met Ibrahim, Musa and `Isa. They mentioned the matter of the Last Hour, and they asked Ibrahim about it, who said, `I do not have knowledge of it.’ They asked Musa about it and he said, `I have no knowledge of it.’ They then asked `Isa about it, and he said, `As for when it will occur, only Allah, the Exalted and Most Honored, knows that. My Lord has conveyed to me that the Dajjal (False Messiah) will appear, and I will have two staffs (spears) with me. When he sees me, he will dissolve just as lead is dissolved. Allah will destroy him when he sees me, and the tree and the stone will say, `O Muslim! There is a disbeliever under (behind) me, so come and kill him.’ Allah will destroy them (the Dajjal and his army), and the people will safely go back to their lands and areas. Thereafter, Gog and Magog will appear, and they will be swarming from every mound, sweeping over the earth and destroying everything they pass by. They will drink every water source they pass. The people will come to me complaining about Gog and Magog and will invoke Allah, the Exalted and Most Honored, against them, and Allah will bring death to all of them until the earth rots with their stinking odor. Allah will send down rain on them and the rain will carry their corpses, until it throws them in the sea… My Lord, the Exalted and Most Honored has conveyed to me that when this occurs, the Hour will be just like the pregnant women when the term of pregnancy is full, her family does not know when she will surprise them and give birth, whether by night or by day.) Ibn Majah also collected a similar Hadith Therefore these are the greatest of the Messengers but they did not have knowledge of the appointed term of the Hour. They asked `Isa about it and he spoke about its Signs, since he will descend in the last generations of this Ummah, implementing the Law of Allah’s Messenger , killing the Dajjal and destroying Gog and Magog people by the blessing of his supplication. `Isa merely informed them of the knowledge Allah gave him on this subject. Imam Ahmad recorded that Hudhayfah said, “The Messenger of Allah was asked about the Hour and he said,

(Its knowledge is with my Lord, the Exalted and Most Honored, none can reveal its time except Him. However, I will tell you about its portents and the signs that precede it. Before it commences, there will be Fitnah (trials) and Harj.) They asked, `O Allah’s Messenger! We know the meaning of the Fitnah, so what is the Harj’ He said,

(It means killing, in the Language of the Ethiopians. ) He then said,

(Isolation and loneliness will be common between people, and therefore, almost no one will be able to recognize any other.)” None among the collectors of the six Sunan collected this Hadith using this chain of narration. Tariq bin Shihab said that the Messenger of Allah kept mentioning the Last Hour (for people kept asking about it), until this Ayah was revealed,

(They ask you about the Hour (Day of Resurrection): “When will be its appointed time”). An-Nasa’i collected this Hadith, which has a strong chain. Therefore, this unlettered Prophet , the chief of the Messengers and their Seal, Muhammad, may Allah’s peace and blessings be on him, Muhammad, the Prophet of mercy, repentance, Al-Malhmah (great demise of the disbelievers), Al-`Aqib (who came after many Prophets), Al-Muqaffi (the last of a succession) and Al-Hashir (below whom will all people be gathered (on the Day of Gathering)) Muhammad who said, as collected in the Sahih from Anas and Sahl bin Sa`d,

(My sending and the Hour are like this,) and he joined his index and middle fingers. Yet, he was commanded to defer knowledge of the Last Hour to Allah if he was asked about it,

(Say: “The knowledge thereof is with Allah (alone), but most of mankind know not.”)

www.tafsir.com