Article appeared Friday, June 14th, 2013 in The News Today, Bangladesh

The Revelation (282)

yousuf mahbubul Islam, PhD

Do we enjoy existence and the good things of life? As a part of existence we have feelings and intelligence. Feelings and intelligence together allow us to enjoy the things and blessings of life. Can we make a list of things that we enjoy? For example, do we enjoy having abilities and skills? What about having a refreshing shower, delicious food, energizing sleep, fine clothes, a sound health, a status in the society, etc.? Being on the receiving end of all such blessings what should the reaction or response of a grateful human being be? If we believe that the Creator has bestowed on us all these blessings to enjoy, a logical question would be why. Why has the Creator gone to all the trouble of providing human beings with the blessings of life? Turning to the most recent Revelation, the Qur’an, we find, “We have honored the sons of Adam; provided them with transport on land and sea; given them for sustenance things good and pure; and conferred on them special favors above a great part of Our Creation.” [17.70] The Creator has honored human beings with the enjoyment of life. An example of a special favor would be the creation of intelligence to collect data, analyze facts and understand the consequences of our own behavior and actions. So why has the Creator given this particular favor? It is the Creator’s personal choice to make each human being unique and beautiful. Each human being is like the masterpiece of an artist. Do we enjoy being unique and beautiful? Could it simply be that the Creator wants to be acknowledged and honored in return for the unique existence and blessings? Would this be an appropriate response of a grateful human being? “Say: "It is He Who has created you (and made you grow) and made for you the faculties of hearing, seeing, feeling and understanding: little thanks it is you give."” [67.23] What kind of gratitude does the Creator want? In previous Revelations, for example, in a number of places in the Bible we find: “"Well said, teacher", the man replied; "You are right in saying that God is ONE and there is no other but Him. To love Him with all your heart, with all your understanding and with all your strength, and to love your neighbor as yourself is more important than all burnt offerings and sacrifices. "” [Mark 12:32-33, NIV] {1} Loving the Creator with all our intelligence is more important than all burnt offerings and sacrifices! Similarly in the Qur’an we find: “O people! Adore your Guardian-Lord who created you and those who came before you that you may have the chance to learn righteousness.” [2.21] It is the Creator’s right to be loved in return for the meaningful existence that He has given us. If we do not love our Creator in return what might He do? On top, if we structure our communities to misuse the power and status given by Him, ill-treat our neighbors and subordinates, behave arrogantly in the earth and create diversions that invite sin can we further annoy Him? “When We finally decide to destroy a town or population We (first) send a definite order or commandment to those among them who are given the good things of this life and yet they continue to transgress; so that the Word (Judgment) is proved true against them: then (it is) We finally destroy them with utter destruction.” [17.16] History has repeatedly witnessed many such nations being destroyed by the Creator. As an example, to Pharaoh and his people, the Creator sent Moses (pbuh) with a definite order so that they believe and mend their arrogant ways. The following Verses from the Qur’an detail how the Creator repeatedly punished them before destroying them completely. Upon the arrival and

demonstration done by Moses, some people and magicians declared their firm belief in the Creator. Pharaoh, on the other hand, responded arrogantly with insolence and rebuked them,

7.123 “Said Pharaoh, "Believe in him before I give you permission? Surely this is a trick which you have planned in the city to drive out its people: but soon shall you know (the consequences).” 7.124 “Be sure I will cut off your hands and your feet on opposite sides and I will cause you all to die on the cross.” 7.125 “They replied: "For us we are but sent back to our Lord (if we die).” 7.126 “But you (Pharaoh) wreak your vengeance on us simply because we believed in the Signs of our Lord when they reached us! Our Lord! Pour out on us patience and constancy and take our souls to You as Muslims (ones who bow to Your Will)!” 7.127 “Said the chiefs of Pharaoh's people (to Pharaoh): "Will you leave Moses and his people to spread mischief in the land and to abandon you and your gods?" Pharaoh replied: "Their male children will we slay; (only) their females will we save alive; and (then) we (will) have over them (power) irresistible."” 7.128 “Said Moses to his people: "Pray for help from Allah and (wait) in patience and constancy: for the earth is Allah's to give as a heritage to such of his servants as He Pleases; and the end is (best) for the righteous.” 7.129 “They replied, "We have had (nothing but) trouble (from Pharaoh) both before and after you came to us." Moses said, "It may be that your Lord will destroy your enemy and make you inheritors in the earth; that so that He may try you by your deeds."” 7.130 “We punished the people of Pharaoh with years (of drought) and shortness of crops; that they might receive admonition.” 7.131 “But when good (times) came they (followers of Pharaoh) said, "this is due to us"; when gripped by calamity they ascribed it to evil omens connected with Moses and those with him! Behold! In truth the omens of evil are theirs in Allah's sight but most of them do not understand!” 7.132 “They said (to Moses), "Whatever be the Signs you bring to work with sorcery on us we shall never believe in you."” 7.133 “So We sent (plagues) on them and wholesale death: locusts, lice, frogs and blood: Signs openly self-explained; but they were steeped in arrogance, a people given to sin.”
After repeated warnings and chances, “So We exacted retribution from them: We drowned them in the sea because they rejected Our Signs and failed to take warning from them.” [7.136] --------{Notes}: {1} http://biblehub.com/mark/12-32.htm