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Article appeared Friday, July 26th, 2019 in The News Today, Bangladesh

The Revelation (580) yousuf mahbubul Islam, PhD

We often approach God when in trouble or for things that we need. In our approach do
we ever think about God Himself? Who is God? Is He important? Why do we approach
Him? Is God just one of the sources from whom we hope for blessings that we need to
live our life effectively?

Before attempting to answer these questions, to build context, the following analogous
questions would be worth considering. Many of us are in employment and some are
perhaps owners of businesses. The following questions may be evaluated from both the
employer as well as the employee point of view. How important is the owner of the
business that we work for? How important are the other employees and resources
provided? Why has the owner set up the business? Is it for a purpose that he/she has in
mind or for the purpose of the employees? What is the role of the employees? When
employees approach the owner for something, is it likely to be granted? Could it be
when and if granting the wish furthers the overall purpose of the company? If employees
do not perform their functions are they given warnings?

Can we apply a similar logic to thinking about God? Who is God? Is He the Owner of
everything in the heavens and the earth? What do the Holy Scriptures say? In the
Deuteronomy chapter of the Bible, the following Verse answers this question:
“To the LORD your God belong the heavens, even the highest heavens,
the earth and everything in it.” [Deuteronomy, 10:14, NIV] {1}

In a number of places of the Holy Qur’an not only is emphasis placed on the concept of
ownership, humans beings are encouraged to study the nature of God’s creation and
logically workout that He alone has power over all things. For example, in Chapter 3,
Verses 189 and 190,
“To God belongs the dominion of the heavens and the earth; and God has power
over all things. Behold! In the creation of the heavens and the earth and the
alternation of night and day there are indeed Signs for men of understanding.”
[3.189 – 3.190]

As the Creator of the heavens and the earth and everything in it, who else could claim
ownership? Being so, in our day-to-day affairs, what is the level of support that we can
expect from God?
“To God belongs all that is in the heavens and on earth; to Him do all questions
go back (for decision).” [3.109]

Just like in a company, matters are referred to the owner; in our day-to-day life matters
are referred to God for decision. Just as an employee approaches the boss, e.g., to
please the boss, how should one then approach God?
“Verily this is My Way leading straight: follow it: follow not (other) paths: they will
scatter you about from His (great) path: thus does He command you that you
may be righteous.” [6.153]

So, what is the straight path? When we approach God for ourselves, the purpose or path
leads back to us individually. When we do something purely with the intent of pleasing
God, i.e., without a selfish motive, could it be the straight path? Working out God’s
blessings, demonstrating gratitude, being in awe of the things that He has created,
researching to discover His Attributes, helping others to find Him can all be classified as
the straight path leading to Him. The path/attitude that does not lead to Him is defined in
the Qur’an.
“Those who rest not their hope on their meeting with Us but are pleased and
satisfied with the life of the present and those who heed not Our Signs. Their
abode is the Fire because of the (evil) they earned.” [10.7 – 10.8]

We are scheduled to meet our Creator on the Day of Judgment. Those on the straight
path will be rewarded, while those who do not look forward to meeting Him will be in
serious trouble. This is the warning and good news that all prophets from God have
brought. The last prophet, i.e., Prophet Muhammad, sent to Makka and Medina, also
brought the same message and in addition was revealed what we now have as the
Qur’an – complete Guidance from God. God has made available the Qur’an throughout
the world and translations are available in all languages that have a written script. As He
has made Guidance available, He Guides and Commands,

25.51 “Had it been Our Will We could have sent a warner to every center of

25.52 “Therefore listen not to the Unbelievers but strive against them with
the utmost strenuousness with it (the Qur’an).”
Just as we look up product manuals, turning to the Qur’an for Guidance is an essential
part of belief.
“Those to whom We have sent the book (the Qur’an) study it as it should be
studied; they are the ones that believe therein; those who reject faith therein the
loss is their own.” [2.121]

In addition to seeking personal guidance, helping others understand the purpose and
Guidance given in the Qur’an is commanded.
“And We have explained to man in this Qur'an every kind of similitude: yet the
greater part of men refuse (to receive it) except with ingratitude!” [17.89]

The Qur’an has been revealed/sent by God as a special Mercy for mankind. It explains
all concepts that are needed by man in addition to the purpose of human life, duties
towards God, the fact that we will face Him on the Day of Judgment, the criterion of
judgment and consequences of our attitude towards Him and treatment towards the rest
of His creation.
“This is the Book (the Qur’an); in it is guidance sure without doubt to those who
fear God. Who believe in the Unseen are steadfast in prayer and spend out of
what We have provided for them. And those who believe in the Revelation sent
to you (O, Muhammad) and sent before your time and (in their hearts) have the
assurance of the Hereafter. They are on (true) guidance from their Lord and it is
these who will prosper.” [2.2 – 2.5]

“And We have not sent you (O, Muhammad), except as a bringer of good tidings
and a warner. Say, "I do not ask of you for it any payment – only that whoever
wills may take a (straight) Path to his Lord."” [25.56–25.57]