An-Nisa · Juz 5 · Qur'an Tafseer

Tafseer Surah an-Nisa Ayah 56

The Punishment of Those who Disbelieve in Allah’s Books and His Messengers

Particular believers and disbelievers were mentioned in the previous ayah. Stated now is the reward and punishment of a believer and a disbeliever as a universal rule.

In Ayah 56, Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala describes the torment in the Fire of Jahannam for those who disbelieve in His Ayaat and hinder from the path of His Messengers. Allah said,

إِنَّ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُواْ بِـَايَـتِنَا

 “Surely, those who disbelieved in Our Ayaat…”

meaning His Books, His Messengers and His Divine Signs. Talking about the torment that they will face in the Hereafter, Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala says,

كُلَّمَا نَضِجَتْ جُلُودُهُمْ بَدَّلْنَـهُمْ جُلُوداً غَيْرَهَا لِيَذُوقُواْ الْعَذَابَ

“We shall burn them in Fire. As often as their skins are roasted through, We shall change them for other skins that they may taste the punishment.”

Al-Amash said that Ibn Umar said, “When their skin are burned, they will be given another skin in replacement, and this skin will be as white as paper.” This was collected by Ibn Abi Hatim.

Explaining the highly apocalyptic statement in ayah 56, Mu’adh radhiAllahu anhu says that as soon as their skin is burnt out it will be replaced – and this will be with such speed that the skin will be replaced a hundred times in one moment.

Hasan al-Basri says, “The Fire will eat them everyday seventy thousand times. When it would have eaten them up, they will be commanded: ‘Return’. So, they shall return to be as they were.” [al-Baihaqi, as quoted by Mazhari]

According to a narration in al-Bukhari and Muslim, the Prophet sallAllahu aalyhi wa sallam said,

“Lightest in punishment among the people of Fire will be the man in the sole of whose feet there will be two smouldering embers the heat from which will keep his brain boiling like a cauldron boiling to the brim.” [Almundhiri, al-Targheeb v.4, p.239]

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