What Does It Mean to Believe in the Last Day?
Belief in the Last Day means to believe that the life of this world will come to an end. Allah says what means:
Whatsoever is on the earth will perish. (Ar-Rahman 55:26)
Belief in the Last Day entails the following:
1- To believe in the life of the Barzakh:
This life is the time after one’s death until the Last Day. In it, the believer will live a life of pleasure, while the disbeliever will be punished. Allah says what means:
The Fire; they are exposed to it, morning and afternoon, And the Day the Hour appears [it will be said], ‘Make the people of Pharaoh enter the severest punishment. (Ghafir 40:46)
2- To believe in the Resurrection: Allah will resurrect mankind, naked, barefooted, and uncircumcised. Allah says what means:
The disbelievers claim that they will never be resurrected. Say, ‘Yes, by my Lord, you will surely be resurrected; then you will surely be informed of what you did. And that, for Allah, is easy.’ (At-Taghabun 64:7)
3- To believe in the Gathering: Allah will gather all creation together and call them to account. Allah says what means:
And [warn of] the Day when We will remove the mountains and you will see the earth prominent, and We will gather them and not leave behind from them anyone. (Al-Kahf 18:47)
4- To believe that people will be brought before Allah in rows: Allah says what means:
And they shall be brought before your Lord, standing in rows: ‘You have certainly come to Us just as We created you the first time. But you claimed that We would never make for you an appointment.’ (Al-Kahf 18:48)
5- To believe that one’s limbs will bear witness. Allah says what means:
Till, when they reach it, their hearing and their eyes, and their skins will testify against them as to what they used to do. And they will say to their skins, ‘Why do you testify against us?’ They will say: ‘Allah has caused us to speak, He causes all things to speak: and He created you the first time, and to Him you are made to return.’ And you have not been hiding yourselves, lest your ears, and your eyes, and your skins testify against you; but you thought that Allah knew not much of what you were doing. (Fussilat 41:20-22)
6- To believe in the Questioning. Allah says what means:
But stop them; verily they are to be questioned. [They will be asked], ‘What is [wrong] with you? Why do you not help each other?’ But they, that Day, are in surrender. (As-Saffat 37:24-26)
7- To believe in the Sirat (Bridge over the Hellfire) and that everyone must pass over it. Allah says what means:
There is not one of you but will pass over [Hell]; this is upon your Lord an inevitability decreed. (Maryam 19:71)
8- To believe in the weighing of deeds. Allah will call people to account and reward those who did well with what they deserve, due to their righteous deeds, their faith, and adherence to their Messengers, and He will punish those who did evil. Allah says what means:
And We place the scales of justice for the Day of Resurrection, so no soul will be treated unjustly at all. And if there is [even] the weight of a mustard seed, We will bring it forth. And sufficient are We as accountant. (Al-Anbiyaa’ 21:47)
9- To believe in the handing out of Scrolls and Books. Allah says what means:
Then, as for him who will be given his Record in his right hand, He surely will receive an easy reckoning. And he will return to his family in joy! But whosoever is given his Record behind his back. He will cry out for destruction. And [enter to] burn in a Blaze. (Al-Inshiqaq 84:7-12)
10- To believe that people will be rewarded with Jannah or Hellfire in an everlasting and eternal life that will never end. Allah says what means:
Verily, they who disbelieved among the People of the Scripture and the polytheists will be in the fire of Hell, abiding eternally therein. Those are the worst of creatures. Verily, those who believe and do righteous deeds, they are the best of creatures. Their reward with Allah will be gardens of perpetual residence beneath which rivers flow, wherein they will abide forever, Allah being pleased with them and they with Him. That is for whoever has feared his Lord. (Al-Bayyinah 98:6-8)
11- To believe in the Hawd (the pool which Allah granted the Prophet; whoever drinks from it once, will never feel thirsty thereafter), intercession, and all other things which the Messenger informed us.
What Are the Merits of Belief in the Last Day?
1- Belief in the Last Day would make one prepare himself for that Day, by performing good deeds, and competing therein, and abstaining from sinful acts and fearing His punishment.
2- Belief in the Last Day would comfort the believers; since they know what they missed in this world, Allah would reward them with better in the Hereafter.
3- Belief in the Last Day distinguishes the believers who are truthful in their faith from those who are not.
Source: This article is based on Abdur-Rahman Al-Sheha’ My First Step in Islam published by Osoul International Center.