All Praise is due to Allaah. We praise Him, seek his help, and ask His forgiveness. We seek refuge in Allaah from the evil of our souls, and the adverse consequences of our deeds. Whoever Allaah guides, there is none that can misguide, and whoever He allows to be misguided, then none can guide him.
I bear witness and testify that there is no deity worthy of worship except for Allaah; He is alone, having no partners. I bear witness and testify that Muhammad, may the peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him, is His slave and worshipper.
On the Day of Judgement, Allaah will make His slaves stand before Him, and He will remind them of the deeds they did, the words they uttered, that which they revealed and that which they concealed, the faith or kufr that they followed in this world, whether they followed the Straight Path or deviated from it, whether they were obedient or disobedient. He will tell them the rewards or punishments they deserve, and the slaves will be given their books (records of their deeds) in their rights hands if they were righteous and in their left hands if they were evil. The reckoning will be easy for some and difficult for others. Some will be raised and honoured others will be debased and humiliated.
Each person will be given his book containing a complete record of the deeds which he did in this life. The ways in which the people will be given their books will vary. The believer will be given his book in his right hand, from the front, and his reckoning will be easy, them he will return to his family in Paradise in joy:
Then as for him who will be given his Record in his right hand, He surely, will receive an easy reckoning, And will return to his family in joy!
[Al-Inshiqaq 84: 7-8]
When the believer will look at what his record contains, of Tawheed and righteous deeds, he will be happy and will rejoice, and he will raise his voice to announce this joy.
Then as for him who will be given his Record in his right hand will say: “Here! read my Record! Surely, I did believe that I shall meet my Account!” So he shall be in a life, well-pleasing. In a lofty Paradise, the fruits in bunches whereof will be low and near at hand. Eat and drink at ease for that which you have sent on before you in days past!
[Al-Haqqah 69: 19-24]
As for the kaafir, munafiq and the people of misguidance, they will be given their books in their left hands from behind their backs. At that point the kaafir, will raise his voice with cries of woe, praying against himself.
But whosoever is given his Record behind his back, he will invoke (for his) destruction, and he shall enter a blazing Fire, and be made to taste its burning.
[Al-Inshiqaq 84: 10-12]
But as for him who will be given his Record in his left hand, will say: “I wish that I had not been given my Record! “And that I had never known, how my Account is! “Would that it had been my end (death)! “My wealth has not availed me; “My power (and arguments to defend myself) have gone from me!” (It will be said): “Seize him and fetter him; Then throw him in the blazing Fire.
[Al-Haqqah 69: 25-31]
When the people are given their books, it will be said to them:
This, Our Record, speaks about you with truth. Verily, We were recording what you used to do (i.e. Our angels used to record your deeds).
[Al-Jathiya 45: 29]
Imam Abu Abdullah Al–Qurtubi, may Allaah have mercy on him, in his tafseer depicts the event:
When the people are resurrected from their greaves to the place of judgement, they will stand therein for as long as Allaah wills, barefoot and naked. Then the time of reckoning will come when Allaah wills to bring them to account. He will command that the books in which the honourable scribes (angels) recorded the deeds of mankind brought forth. Among them will be some who will be given their books in their right hands. These are the blessed (those who enter Paradise). Others will be given their books in their left hands or from behind their backs. They are the doomed (those who are to enter Hell). At that point each person will read his book.
Imagine yourself when the books fly forth and the Balance is set up, and you are called by name before all of creation: where is So and so the son of So and so? Come to have your record examined before Allaah. Angels will be dispatched to fetch you, and they will bring you closer to Allaah. There will be no problem posed by the similarity of names to your name and your father’s name. You will know that you are the one who is being called. Your heart will be filled with fear and your limbs will start to tremble. You will start to panic, your colour will change and your heart will sink. You will be taken through the ranks to your Lord, to be examined by Him and to stand before Him. The eyes of all creatures will be upon you, you will be standing before them all. Your heart will sink and you will be filled with intense terror, because you will know what is going to happen.
Imagine yourself, standing before your Lord, holding in your hands the book that speaks of your deeds. It will not overlook any terrible deed that you did and concealed, or any secret that you kept. You will read the book’s contents nervously, with a broken heart, faced with terrors from in front and behind. How many forgotten terrible actions will you remember now! How many bad deeds which had concealed will be made known now! How many deeds which you took for granted were sincere and acceptable will now be thrown back at you in that place and cancelled out, after you had pinned such great hopes on them! How much regret will fill your heart and how sorry you will feel for your negligence in obeying your Lord!
The one who is given his book in his right hand will know that he is one of the people of Paradise, and will say, “Here, read my Record!” when Allaah gives him permission to read his book. If he was a leader of goodness who called others to the worship of Allaah alone and enjoined it upon them, and persisted in doing it regularly, he will be called by his name and the name of his father. He will come forth and a white book will be brought out for him, in the middle of which are his bad deeds and on the outside of which are his good deeds. He will start by reading the record of his sins and he will be scared; his face will turn yellow and his colour will change. When reaches the end of his book, it will say, “they are your sins and evil deeds, and you are forgiven for them.” He will be filled with great joy, then he will turn the book over and he will read his good deeds, and his joy will only increase further. At the end of the book, he will find the words: these are your good deeds, which are multiplied for you. Then his face will turn white, and a crown will be brought and placed on his head. He will be dressed in two garments and every joint of his body will be adorned. He will grow to a height of sixty cubits, which was the height of Adam, and it will be said to him, “Go to your companions and tell them the glad tidings, tell them that each one among them will have the same.” When he turns away, he will say,
Here! Read my Record! Surely, I did believe that I shall meet my Account!
So he shall be in a life, well-pleasing.
- i.e. a good life, which he will be pleased with.
In a lofty paradise.
- means, in the heavens.
If a man was a leader of evil, who called others to evil and enjoined it upon them, and persisted in doing it regularly, he will be called by his name and the name of his father. He will come forth and a black book will be brought out for him, in the middle of which will be his good deeds and on the outside which are his sins. The reckoning will start with his good , which he will read and will think that he will be saved. When he reaches the end of his book, it will say, these are your good deeds and they are rejected. Then his face will turn black, and he will be overwhelmed with grief and despair. Then he will turn the book over and read his evil deeds. His grief will only increase further, and his face will turn even blacker. When he reaches the end of the book, he will find the words: these are your evil deeds, which are multiplied for you i.e. the punishment will be multiplied for him, it does not mean that things that he did not do will be added to his record. Then he will be taken to the fire: his eyes will turn blue and his face will turn black, and he will be clothed in garments of pitch.
It will be said to him, ‘Go to your companions and tell them that each of them will have the same.’ So he will go off, saying,
I wish that I had not been given my Record! And that I had never known how my Account is! Would that it had been my end (death)!
[Al-Haqqah 69: 25-7]
My Power (and arguments to defend myself) have gone from me!
[Al-Haqqah 69: 29]
Then Allaah will say
Seize him and fetter him; then throw him in the blazing fire.
[Al-Haqqah 69: 30 -31]
As for those who will be given their books from behind their backs, their left shoulders will be dislocated and their arms will be placed behind them, with which they will take their books. Muhjaahid said: ‘their faces will be moved to the backs of their hands, and they will read their books in that state’.
Imagine yourself, if you are one of the blessed, going out before all of creation with a joyful face, having attained perfection and beauty, with your book in your right hand, seized under the arms by an angel who will call out before the people, ‘This is So and so the son of So and so, he has attained happiness and will never feel sorrow again.’ But if you are one of the doomed, your face will turn black and you will pass the people with your book in your left hand, or behind your back. You will utter cries of woe and an angel will seize you under the arms and call out before all the people: ‘So and so is doomed to a state of misery and will never feel happy again!’
[Based on Umar S. Al Ashqar's, Islamic Creed Series, The Day of Resurrection, Series 6]