Questions and Answers > Paradise > Salvation in Islam

Why do people die today according to the Qur'an?

Death is a terrible thing, so why people die today? Why there is suffering, frustration, wars and evil in the world today? To answer this important question we have to look at the origin of heaven and earth: the creation:

1. Paradise

God set the first people Adam and his wife in a garden were they were allowed everything except the fruit of one tree (Qur’an 2:35, 7:19). So, they lived in a garden in which they enjoyed hapiness, free from hunger, thirst and pain from the sun’s heat (Qur’an 20:118-119). A big contrast to this present world in which people are subject to pain, and with it, physical and moral weakness [1].


2. The first sin

The Qur´an is telling us that Ibless was disputing with God. Iblees was an angel before he disobeyed the order of Allah:

“And [mention] when We said to the angels, "Prostrate to Adam," and they prostrated, except Iblees; he refused.” (Qur’an 20:116).

Ibless is the Devil, who tempted Adam and Eve to commit sin. While Adam and Eve where in Paradise, God warned them not to eat from the "Tree of knowledge". Otherwise they would surely die. God also warned that the Devil is their enemy:

“So We said, "O Adam, indeed this is an enemy to you and to your wife. Then let him not remove you from Paradise so you would suffer“ (Qur´an 20:117 ).

They ate from the forbidden tree after the advice of the Devil. That was the first sin of mankind (Qur’an 7:20-25, 20:120-121).


3. Consequences of sin

The first sin of mankind was the moment when pain, suffering and death entered mankind. The Qur’an is full of warnings to those who disobey the commandments of God and that the result is punishment. The consequences of sin are very serious. The Qur’an warns that the man who does these things will not live: “So each We seized for his sin” (Qur´an 29:40). According to the Qur’an the future looks hopeless for the disobedient and sinful people.

“And ‘O Adam, dwell, you and your wife, in Paradise and eat from wherever you will but do not approach this tree, lest you be among the wrongdoers’" (Qur’an 7:19).

We cannot refuse to admit that we also commit sin, like Adam and Eve. There was no immediate forgiveness for Adam and Eve because they could not go back to Paradise [2] (Qur’an 20:123).
Therefore the Qur´an is saying that the result of sin is pain, suffering and death.


4. Solution for the sin of mankind

The Qur’an is informing that sin continued to prevail among the children of Adam and Eve [3]:

“And We did certainly give Moses the Torah and followed up after him with messengers. And We gave Jesus, the son of Mary, clear proofs and supported him with the Pure Spirit. But is it [not] that every time a messenger came to you, [O Children of Israel], with what your souls did not desire, you were arrogant? And a party [of messengers] you denied and another party you killed.” (Qur´an 2:87).

Like Abraham´s son ransomed with a mighty sacrifice (Qur´an 37:99-110). The righteous Jesus (Qur´an 19:19) was the messenger of God who was killed (Qur’an 3:55, 5:17 and 117). His death and resurrection is a sign to all mankind and a mercy of God. The “Sign” refers to the mercy of God by the Savior Jesus Christ, the solution for the sin of mankind:

“But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life” (Titus 3:4-7).


Notes:

[1] Anthony Hearle Johns, Fall of man, in: Jane Dammen McAuliffe (ed.), Encyclopedia of the Qur’an, Volume Two, E-I, Brill, Leiden, 2002, 172.
[2] E.M. Hicham, How shall they hear? Sharing your Christian faith with Muslims, Ambassador International, 2009, 96.
[3] Dr. Ibrahimkhan O. Deshmukh, The Gospel and Islam, GLS Publishing, Mumbai, 2011, 291.