Those Sent to Hell, Stay there Forever
Due to some hadiths, 'Muslims' are taught that if they are sent to Hell, they will serve a certain amount of time there and will then be released and be allowed to enter Paradise. This is not a prophetic concept as it is completely against the true teachings of Allah in the Qur'an - which are also the prophet's true teachings.
"They say, 'The Fire will only touch us for a number of days.' Say, 'Have you made a contract with Allah - then Allah will not break His contract - or are you rather saying about Allah what you do not know?' No indeed! Those who accumulate bad actions and are surrounded by their mistakes, are the Companions of the Fire, remaining in it timelessly, forever." (Qur'an 2:80-81)
"...they say, ‘The Fire will only touch us for a limited number of days.’ The lies they have invented have led them astray in their own religion." (Qur'an 3:24)
"...And those who followed would say: "If only We had one more chance, We would disown them, as they have disowned us." Thus will Allah show their deeds as anguish for them. They will not come out of the Fire." (Qur'an 2:167)
Therefore, the Prophet could never have taught this.
"...If [the Prophet] had said anything against Us, We would certainly have seized his right hand and cut off his artery, and none of you could have defended him." (Qur'an 69:43-47)
Ignoring these verses in preference to alternative 'sayings' is a serious sin:
"These are Allah's verses we are reciting to you to show the truth. In which narration (hadith / حَدِيث) after Allah and His verses do they believe in?" (Qur'an 45:6)
It is worth a mention here that a Muslim does not enter Hell. When one is a 'Muslim', a Believer, he is eligible for Paradise only, he displays all the qualities of faith required by the Qur'an to be a Muslim. Only those who are disbelievers enter the Fire. There is no concept of 'half a Muslim' in the Qur'an. Therefore, it is a paradoxical statement for one to ask "If a Muslim enters Hell...", because a 'Muslim' never enters Hell. Quranically, there is no concept where a "Muslim" does evil deeds to deserve Hell. A person who does evil while claiming to be a "Muslim" cannot be a Muslim. If such a person expecting Paradise enters Hell, he can expect to spend his eternity there. In the Qur'an, he is simply a disbeliever, more specifically a hypocrite.
The wrong actions of those of His sincere and committed servants are converted to good, and they are entered into the Gardens of Paradise.
"Except for the ones who repented, believed and done righteous actions, Allah will change their wrong-doings into good. Allah has been Forgiving, Merciful." (Qur'an 25:70)
"On the day He gathers everyone together [saying], ‘Company of jinn! You have seduced a great many humans,’ their adherents among mankind will say, ‘Lord, we have profited from one another, but now we have reached the appointed time You decreed for us.’ He will say, ‘Your home is the Fire, and there you shall remain eternally’- unless Allah wills otherwise." (Qur'an 6:128)
In this verse, Allah's decree is that these Hell-bound people are sent there forever, "eternally". However, "unless Allah wills otherwise" is not negating that, it is used as an expression to emphasise Allah's capability only to do otherwise, it is not retracting what has just been stated already about their stay in Hell forever.
There are certain Quranic styles and ways of expression unique to the Qur'an. One such style used are phrases like "except if He wills" / "except if He gives permission" / "unless He wills otherwise". In the Qur'an, often these expressions follow on from a definite statement. But they do not necessarily negate the initial statement. These expressions serve purely to emphasise on the fact that Allah has the capability to will it both ways - but His verdict on the matter is what has been mentioned initially. A few examples are as follows.
"[Prophet], We shall teach you [the Quran] and you will not forget — unless Allah wishes; He knows both what is open and what is hidden." (Qur'an 87:6-7)
Allah says to the prophet, "you will not forget" the Qur'an - that is His verdict in the verse. The following portion "unless Allah wishes" is there to show that Allah is capable of making him forget, if He so wills - not that He will make him forget. The prophet will not forget is the verdict - the point made using this Quranic style is that Allah is capable of doing all things.
"The Trumpet is blown and those in the heavens and those in the earth swoon away, except those Allah wills. Then it is blown a second time, at once they stand upright, looking on. And the earth shines with the Pure Light of its Lord; the Book is put in place; the prophets and witnesses are brought; it is decided between them with the truth; and they are not wronged. Every self is repaid in full for what it did. He knows best what they are doing." (Qur'an 39:68-70)
In this verse, everyone on earth is destroyed when the trumpet is first blown. And then on the second time they are raised up. The expression, "except those Allah wills" placed following the first sounding of the trumpet does not mean some people will be able to escape the destruction on that Day! Once again, we can see that it is the same Quranic style used in emphasising Allah's power and capability to choose what He wills to do. These phrases do not retract the statement made by Allah previous to them but rather only a Quranic style of expressing Allah's power.
With this Quranic wisdom, we can thus understand verse 6:128, when Allah will say on the Day of Judgement, "‘Your home is the Fire, and there you shall remain eternally", He is not taking these words back by saying "unless Allah wills otherwise".
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