Book of deeds as mentioned in Quran
Do you know that there are the two angels, Raqib and Atid, assigned to record each person’s deeds. Raqib records the good deeds, while Atid records the bad deeds. These angels accompany every individual throughout their life, noting their actions, intentions, and even thoughts. It is believed that they remain vigilant and unbiased, ensuring a comprehensive record of one’s life.
So, it is very important for us to do the good and refrain from evil. Even when we use Social media or our phones for internet browsing, we should be very careful about what we type, what we watch and what we listen. May Allah save us from modern day fitna and help us increase our good deeds.
Allah swt says, in Quran- 18:49
فَمَن يَعْمَلْ مِثْقَالَ ذَرَّةٍ خَيْرًۭا يَرَهُۥ ٧
وَمَن يَعْمَلْ مِثْقَالَ ذَرَّةٍۢ شَرًّۭا يَرَهُۥ ٨
So whoever does an atom’s weight of good will see it. And whoever does an atom’s weight of evil will see it.
The Day of Judgment
(69:12) so that We might make it an instructive event for you, and retentive ears might preserve its memory. (69:13) So when the Trumpet is blown with a single blast (69:14) and the earth and the mountains are carried aloft and are crushed to bits at one stroke, (69:15) on that Day shall that indubitable event come to pass; (69:16) when the sky will be rent asunder, the grip holding it together having loosened on that Day, (69:17) and the angels will stand on the sides, with eight of them bearing aloft the Throne of your Lord on that Day. (69:18) That will be the Day when you shall be brought forth (before Allah) and no secret of yours shall remain hidden.
(69:19) On that Day, he whose Record is given to him in his right hand will say: “Lo! Read my Record! (69:20) Verily I was sure that I would be handed over my account.” (69:21) Then he shall find himself in a life of bliss; (69:22) in a lofty Garden (69:23) the clusters of whose fruit will be hanging low to be within reach (of the inmates of Paradise). (69:24) (They will be told): “Eat and drink with good cheer as a reward for the good deeds you did in the days that have passed by.”
(69:25) As for him whose Record will be given to him in his left hand, he will exclaim: “Would that I had never been given my Record, (69:26) and had not known my account. (69:27) Oh! Would that the death that came to me in the world had made an end of me! (69:28) My riches have not availed me, (69:29) and my authority has vanished.” (69:30) (A command will be issued): “Seize him and shackle him, (69:31) then cast him in the Fire, (69:32) then fasten him with a chain, seventy cubits long. (69:33) He would not believe in Allah, the Most Great; (69:34) nor would he urge the feeding of the poor. (69:35) Today he has been left here friendless; (69:36) and has no food except the filth from the washing of wounds, (69:37) which only the sinners will eat.”
On the Day of Judgment, the Book of Deeds will be presented before each individual. This record will be a detailed account of one’s actions, both good and bad. It will serve as undeniable evidence of a person’s life and will be the basis for their judgment. On this day everyone will be held accountable for their deeds, and their ultimate fate will be determined based on the balance of good and bad actions.
وَوُضِعَ ٱلْكِتَـٰبُ فَتَرَى ٱلْمُجْرِمِينَ مُشْفِقِينَ مِمَّا فِيهِ وَيَقُولُونَ يَـٰوَيْلَتَنَا مَالِ هَـٰذَا ٱلْكِتَـٰبِ لَا يُغَادِرُ صَغِيرَةًۭ وَلَا كَبِيرَةً إِلَّآ أَحْصَىٰهَا ۚ وَوَجَدُوا۟ مَا عَمِلُوا۟ حَاضِرًۭا ۗ وَلَا يَظْلِمُ رَبُّكَ أَحَدًۭا ٤٩
And the record ˹of deeds˺ will be laid ˹open˺, and you will see the wicked in fear of what is ˹written˺ in it. They will cry, “Woe to us! What kind of record is this that does not leave any sin, small or large, unlisted?” They will find whatever they did present ˹before them˺. And your Lord will never wrong anyone.
Individuals are handed their books, representing their deeds. Picture this: On Judgment Day, the deeds of people are presented to them in the form of a book. Those who did well and succeeded are given their book in their right hand. They are confident and excited, celebrating their accomplishments. On the other hand, those who failed are given their book in their left hand, and it’s behind their back, symbolizing the hidden and negative nature of their deeds.
The moment of receiving the book is crucial. The person holding the book in their right hand is overjoyed, certain that their good deeds will bring them rewards. They cheer themselves on, proud of their achievements. However, for those with the book in their left hand, regret sets in immediately. They wish they never received the book, fearing the consequences of their actions.
The regretful person reflects on their past life, realizing that their wealth and power are of no use now. The authority they once had is gone, and they face the consequences of their neglect for the poor and needy. In their desperation, they wish for death to end their suffering, but there is no escape.
As a severe punishment, they are thrown into the fiery Hell, chained and locked, with a collar around their neck. The chain, coming from above, keeps them hanging in the fire. This punishment is for those who disbelieved in Allah and neglected their responsibilities towards others.
The person of wealth and power, who failed to use their blessings responsibly, finds themselves isolated with no friends or supporters. Their only sustenance is the filthy remnants, symbolizing the consequences of their wrongdoings.
Book of deeds mentioned in Qur’an
The Book of Deeds is frequently mentioned in the Quran.
- “And the record [of deeds] will be placed [open], and you will see the criminals fearful of that within it, and they will say, ‘Oh, woe to us! What is this book that leaves nothing small or great except that it has enumerated it?’ And they will find what they did present [before them]. And your Lord does injustice to no one.” (Quran 18:49)
- “So whoever does an atom’s weight of good will see it, and whoever does an atom’s weight of evil will see it.” (Quran 99:7-8)
- “And every person’s deeds We have fastened to his neck, and on the Day of Resurrection, We shall bring out for him a book which he will find wide open.” (Quran 17:13)
Book of deeds in Hadith
It is narrated by al-Bukhari (2441), Muslim (2768) and Ibn Maajah (183) from Safwaan ibn Muhriz al-Maazini who said: Whilst I was walking with Ibn ‘Umar (may Allah be pleased with him), holding his hand, a man came up to him and said: “What did you hear the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) say about al-najwa (the secret conversation that Allah will have with His slaves on the Day of Resurrection)?”
He said: “I heard the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) say: ‘Allah will draw the believer close to Him and He will screen him, then He will say: “Do you admit such and such a sin? Do you admit such and such a sin?” And he will say: “Yes, O Lord.” Then when he has admitted his sins, and thinks that he is doomed, (Allah) will say: “I concealed them for you in the world, and I forgive you for them today.”
Then he will be given the book of his good deeds [Ibn Maajah adds: In his right hand]. As for the kaafirs and the hypocrites, they will be called before all people. Those are the ones who told lies about Allah.’”
Book of deed in the Right Hand
First, the ledger of deeds must be received in the right or the left hand. Those who receive the ledgers in their right hands will be the inmates of Paradise with its eternal blessings. Those who receive the ledgers in their left hands will be the inmates of Hell. The point for careful consideration is that necessities of life, as well as unnecessary desires are fulfilled by both righteous and wicked people in this world, and thus both spend their lives in some way or the other, but the consequences of the two [for the Hereafter] are diametrically opposite to each other.
One results in eternal and unending comfort, and the other results in eternal perdition, torture and torment. Man still has the chance [while he is living] to redirect his attention to working hard towards switching the situation in a direction that not only fulfils his legitimate needs and desires in this world, but also attains the eternal pleasures of the Hereafter.
This verse describes the condition of the believers. Their books of deeds will be given to them in their right hands. An easy reckoning will be taken from them and the welcome news of Paradise will be given to them. They will return to their families joyfully.
Those who will be given their Record in their left hands from behind their backs, they will desire death and destruction under the impression that this might end their misery. But it will not be possible for them to die. One of the reasons given here for his misery is that he used to live joyfully among his people in the world, and he was completely oblivious of the Hereafter. The believers, on the other hand, never for a moment were oblivious of the Hereafter in the life of this world.
May Allah make us among his righteous slave and save us from the batil. May Allah increase our Imaan and help us to do the good deeds that weigh heavy on our scales.
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