Fri 25 Jm2 1435 - 25 April 2014
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Does being raised to the status of their parents in Paradise apply to all offspring, young and old?

ar
I read that one of the favours of Allaah is that He will raise the status of children in Paradise to that of their parents who are higher than them, and that on this basis the children of the Companions will be raised to the status of their fathers, and grandchildren will be raised to the status of their forefathers, and so on, every generation will raise the following generation, down to our generation, so we will be raised to the status of the Companions if we are their descendants. This may lead to people being heedless about their actions and relying on this divine honour. What is your opinion?.

Praise be to Allaah.

The question raised here stems from discussion of the verse in which Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

“And those who believe and whose offspring follow them in Faith, —  to them shall We join their offspring, and We shall not decrease the reward of their deeds in anything. Every person is a pledge for that which he has earned”

[al-Toor 52:21] 

The scholars differed concerning the word offspring -- did it refer to young or old? Those who said that it refers to young children did not have any confusion about the meaning of the verse. Rather the confusion arises if the meaning of the word offspring is grown-up children. The more correct view concerning the meaning of it is that it refers to young children. Based on that, it does not refer to that which caused confusion for the questioner. The raise in status is for offspring in the sense of young children, otherwise the implication would be that all the people of Paradise would be of the same status. 

1.

Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyyah (may Allaah have mercy on him) said: the commentators differed concerning the meaning of offspring in this verse. Does it refer to young, old or both? There are three opinions ... Then he said: The specific meaning of offspring here as referring to small children is apparent, otherwise it would imply that those who come later would be equal in status to those who came before, but there is no such implication if what is meant is small children, because the children and offspring of each man will be with him at the same status level. And Allaah knows best. End quote.

Haadi al-Arwaah ila Bilaad al-Afraad, p. 279-281. 

2.

Shaykh Muhammad ibn Saalih al-‘Uthaymeen (may Allaah have mercy on him) said:

If the children are destined for Paradise and the father is destined for Paradise, then Allaah says in His Book (interpretation of the meaning):

“And those who believe and whose offspring follow them in Faith, —  to them shall We join their offspring, and We shall not decrease the reward of their deeds in anything. Every person is a pledge for that which he has earned”

[al-Toor 52:21] 

Meaning that if a person has offspring, and they are people of Paradise, then they will follow their father, even if their status is lower than that of their father. Hence He said: “and We shall not decrease the reward of their deeds in anything” meaning, We will not decrease the reward of the fathers; rather the fathers will retain their abundant reward and the offspring will be raised to the status of their fathers. This refers to the children who are not excluded from the word offspring when they have their own wives and families. These will have a special virtue and will not be joined to their fathers, because if we were to say that each person will join his father even if he has a wife and children or he is on his own, then all the people of Paradise would be of the same level, because everyone is the offspring of the previous generation. Rather what is meant by offspring is those who were with him, and did not leave and have wives and children of their own. These people will be raised to the status of their fathers, and nothing of their fathers’ deeds will be lost. End quote. 

Fataawa Noor ‘ala al-Darb (tape no. 324, side 1). 

3.

And he (may Allaah have mercy on him) also said:

Moreover, Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): “And those who believe and whose offspring follow them in Faith, —  to them shall We join their offspring…”[al-Toor 52:21]. Those who believed and whose offspring followed them in Faith -- the offspring who follow their parents in Faith are small children. Hence Allaah says “to them shall We join their offspring”, i.e., We will cause their offspring to join them in their levels in Paradise. 

With regard to grown-up children who have got married, they will be in their own levels in Paradise, and will not be joined to their fathers, because they have their own offspring, so they will be in their own places. As for offspring in the sense of small children who follow their fathers, they will be joined to their fathers, but this joining does not imply any detraction from the reward or status of the fathers. Hence Allaah says, “and We shall not decrease the reward of their deeds in anything”, meaning that their offspring will be joined to them, and it cannot be said that a deduction will be made from the fathers' degrees commensurate with the rise in status of the offspring, rather Allaah says “and We shall not decrease the reward of their deeds in anything”. End quote. 

Tafseer al-Qur’aan min al-Hujuraat ila al-hadeed, p. 187. 

And Allaah knows best.

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