By: Ibn Kathir


Introduction
Ayat and Ahadith about the Hour
Greater signs of the Hour
Trials and tribulations
Signs and portents
Appearance of Dajjal
Ahadith about the Dajjal
Warnings against the Dajjal
A test for people at the end of time
The descent of Jesus at the end of time
The emergence of the beast
The Hour will not come until...

Islambasics Library: The Signs Before The Day Of Judgment

A test for people at the end of time

 

THE HADITH OF AL-MUGHIRAH IBN SHU'BAH

Al-Mughirah ibn Shubah said, "No-one asked the Prophet (sallallahu alayhe

wa sallam) more questions about the Dajjal than I did. He said, 'You

should not worry about him, because he will not be able to harm you. I

said, 'But they say that he will have much food and water! He said, 'He is

too insignificant in the sight of Allah to have all that." (Muslim.)

Al-Mughirah ibn Shu'bah said, "No-one asked the Prophet (sallallahu alayhe

wa sallam) more questions about the Dajjal than I did." One of the

narrators said, "What did you ask him?" Al-Mughirah said, "I said, 'They

say that the Dajjal will have a mountain of bread and meat, and a river of

water. The Prophet (sallallahu alayhe wa sallam) said, 'He is too

insignificant in the sight of Allah to have all that." (Muslim.)

>From these Ahadith, we can see that Allah will test His servants with the

Dajjal and by the miracles which he will be permitted to perform: as we

have already mentioned, the Dajjal will order the sky to rain for those

who accept him, and will order the earth to bring forth its fruits so that

they and their livestock will eat of it, and their flocks will return fat

and with their udders full of milk. Those who reject the Dajjal and refuse

to believe in him will suffer drought and famine; people and livestock

will die, and wealth and supplies of food will be depleted. People will

follow the Dajjal like swarms of bees, and he will kill a young man and

bring him back to life.

This is not a kind of magic; it will be something real with which Allah

will test His servants at the end of time. Many will be led astray, and

many will be guided by it. Those who doubt will disbelieve, but those who

believe will be strengthened in their faith.

Al-Qadi 'Iyad and others interpreted the phrase "He is too insignificant

in the sight of Allah to have all that" as meaning that the Dajjal is too

insignificant to have anything that could lead the true believers astray,

because he is obviously evil and corrupt. Even if he brings great terror,

the word Kafir will be clearly written between his eyes; one report

explains that it will be written "Kaf, Fa, Ra," from which we can

understand that it will be written perceptibly, not abstractly, as some

people say.

One of his eyes will be blind, protruding and repulsive; this is the

meaning of the Hadith: "...as if it were a grape floating on the surface

of the water." Other reports say that it is "dull, with no light in it,"

or "like white spittle on a wall," i e, it will look ugly.

Some reports say that it is his right eye which will be blind; others say

that it is his left eye.

He could be partly blind in both eyes, or there could be a fault in both

eyes. This interpretation could be supported by the Hadith narrated by

al-Tabarani, in which he reports that Ibn 'Abbas said, "The Prophet

(sallallahu alayhe wa sallam) said, "The Dajjal is curly-haired and

white-skinned. His head is like the branch of a tree; his left eye is

blind, and the other eye looks like a floating grape. "

One may ask: if the Dajjal is going to cause such widespread evil and his

claim to be a"lord" will be so widely believed - even though he is

obviously a liar, and all the Prophets have warned against him - why does

the Quran not mention him by name and warn us against his lies and

stubbornness?

The answer is:-

1. The Dajjal was referred to in the Ayah:

"... The day that certain of the signs of thy Lord do come, no good will

it do to a soul to believe in them then, if it believed not before nor

earned righteousness through its Faith..." (al-Anam 6:158)

Abu Hurairah said, "The Prophet (sallallahu alayhe wa sallam) said, 'There

are three things which, when they appear, no good will it do a soul to

believe in them then, if it believed not before nor earned righteousness

through its Faith. They are: The Dajjal, the Beast, and the rising of the

sun from the west."

2. Jesus son of Mary will descend from Heaven and kill the Dajjal, as we

have already mentioned. The descent of Jesus is mentioned in the Ayat:

"That they said (in boast), 'We killed Christ Jesus the son of Mary, the

Apostle of Allah; - but they killed him not nor crucified him, but so it

was made to appear to them, and those who differ therein are full of

doubts, with no (certain) knowledge, but only conjecture to follow, for of

a surety they killed him not:-

Nay, Allah raised him up unto Himself; and Allah is exalted in Power,

Wise;-

And there is none of the People of the Book but must believe in him before

his death; and on the Day of Judgment, he will be a witness against them."

(al-Nisa 4:157-9)

We think that the Tafsir (interpretation) of this Ayah is that the pronoun

in "before his death" (qabla mawtihi) refers to Jesus; i e, he will

descend and the People of the Book who differed concerning him will

believe in him. The Christians claimed that he was divine, while the Jews

made a slanderous accusation, i e that he was born from adultery. When

Jesus descends before the Day of Judgment, he will correct all these

differences and lies.

On this basis, the reference to the descent of the Messiah Jesus son of

Mary also includes a reference to the Dajjal (false Mesor Antichrist), who

is the opposite of the true Messiah, because sometimes the Arabs refer to

one of two opposites and not the other, but mean both.

3. The Dajjal is not mentioned by name in the Quran because he is so

insignificant: he claims to be divine, but he is merely a human being. His

affairs are too contemptible to be mentioned in the Quran. But the

Prophets, out of loyalty to Allah, warned their people about the Dajjal

and the tribulations and misguiding miracles he would bring. It is enough

for us to know the reports of the Prophets and the many reports from the

Prophet Mohammad (sallallahu alayhe wa sallam).

One could argue that Allah has mentioned Pharaoh and his false claims,

such as "I am your Lord, Most High" (al-Naziat 79:24) and "O Chiefs! No

god do I know for you but myself ..." (al-Qasas 28:38), in the Quran. This

can be explained by the fact that Pharaoh and his deeds are in the past,

and his lies are clear to every believer. But the Dajjal is yet to come,

in the future; it will be a Fitnah and a test for all people. So the

Dajjal is not mentioned in the Qur'an because he is contemptible; and the

fact that he is not mentioned means that it will be a great test.

The facts about the Dajjal and his lies are obvious and do not need

further emphasis. This is often the case when something is very clear. For

example, when the Prophet (sallallahu alayhe wa sallam) was terminally

ill, he wanted to write a document confirming that Abu Bakr would be the

Khalifah after him. Then he abandoned this idea, and said, "Allah and the

believers will not accept anyone other than Abu Bakr." He decided not to

write the document because he knew of Abu Bakr's high standing among the

Sahabah (Companions) and was sure that they would not choose anyone else.

Similarly, the facts about the Dajjal are so clear that they did not need

to be mentioned in the Qur'an.

Allah did not mention the Dajjal in the Quran because He (subhanahu wa

ta'ala) knew that the Dajjal would not be able to lead His true servants

astray; he would only increase their faith, their submission to Allah and

His Messenger, their belief in the Truth, and their rejection of

falsehood. For this reason the believer whom the Dajjal overpowers will

say, when he revives him, "By Allah, it has only increased my

understanding that you are the one-eyed liar about whom the Prophet

(sallallahu alayhe wa sallam) spoke."

 

More Ahadith about the Dajjal

 

The Prophet (sallallahu alayhe wa sallam) said, "The Dajjal will emerge in

a land in the east called Khurasan. His followers will be people with

faces like hammered shields."

Asma' bint Yazid al-Ansariyyah said, "The Prophet (sallallahu alayhe wa

sallam) said, 'During the three years just before the Dajjal comes, there

will be one year when the sky will withhold one third of its rain and the

earth one-third of its fruits. In the second year the sky will withhold

two-thirds of its rain, and the earth two-thirds of its fruits. In the

third year the sky will withhold all of its rain, and the earth all of its

fruits, and all the animals will die. It will be the greatest tribulation:

the Dajjal will bring a Bedouin and say to him, "What if I bring your

camels to life for you? Will you agree that I am your lord?" The Bedouin

will say "Yes." So devils will assume the forms of his camels, with the

fullest udders and the highest humps. Then he will bring a man whose

father and brother have died, and will ask him, "What do you think if I

bring your father and brother back to life? Will you agree that I am your

lord?" The man will say "Yes," so the devils will assume the forms of his

father and brother. Then the Prophet (sallallahu alayhe wa sallam) went

out for something, and then returned. The people were very concerned about

what he had told them. He stood in the doorway and asked, 'What is wrong,

Asma'? I said, 'O Messenger of Allah, you have terrified us with what you

said about the Dajjal. He said, 'He will certainly appear. If I am still

alive, I will contend with him on your behalf; otherwise Allah will take

care of every Muslim on my behalf. I said, 'O Messenger of Allah, we do

not bake our dough until we are hungry, so how will it be for the

believers at that time? The Prophet (sallallahu alayhe wa sallam) said,

'The glorification of Allah which suffices the people of Heaven will be

sufficient for them."

Abu Hurairah (radiallahu anhu) said, "The Prophet (sallallahu alayhe wa

sallam) said, 'The Hour will not come until the Muslims fight the Jews and

kill them. When a Jew hides behind a rock or a tree, it will say, "O

Muslim, O servant of Allah! There is a Jew behind me, come and kill him!"

All the trees will do this except the box-thorn (al-Gharqad), because it

is the tree of the Jews." (Ahmad.)

 

Protection against the Dajjal

 

1. Seeking refuge with Allah from his tribulation.

It is proven in the Sahih (authentic) Ahadith that the Prophet (sallallahu

alayhe wa sallam) used to seek refuge with Allah from the tribulation of

the Dajjal in his prayers, and that he commanded his Ummah to do likewise:

Allahumma inna naudhu bika min 'adhabi jahannam, wa min 'adhabi 'l-qabr,

wa min fitnati 'l-mahya'i wa'l-mamat, wa min fitnati' l-masihi 'd-dajjal."

"O Allah! We seek refuge with You from the punishment of Hell, from the

punishment of the grave, from the tribulations of life and death, and from

the tribulation of the False Messiah (Dajjal)." This Hadith was narrated

by many Sahabah, including Anas. Abu Hurairah, 'A'ishah, Ibn 'Abbas, and

Sa'd.

2. Memorising certain Ayat from Surat al-Kahf.

Al-Hafiz al-Dhahabi said, "Seeking refuge with Allah from the Dajjal is

mentioned in many Mutawatir Ahadith (those with numerous lines of

narrators). One way of doing this is to memorise ten Ayat from Surat

al-Kahf."

Abul-Dira reported that the Prophet (sallallahu alayhe wa sallam) said,

"Whoever memorises the first ten Ayat of Surat al-Kahf will be protected

from the Dajjal." (Abu Dawud.)

3. Keeping away from the Dajjal

One way to be protected from the tribulation of the Dajjal is to live in

Madinah or Makkah.

Abu Hurairah reported that the Prophet (sallallahu alayhe wa sallam) said,

"There are angels standing at the gates of Madinah; neither plague nor the

Dajjal can enter it." (Bukhari, Muslim.)

Abu Bakr reported that the Prophet (sallallahu alayhe wa sallam) said,

"The terror caused by the Dajjal will not enter Madinah. At that time it

will have seven gates; there will be two angels guarding every gate."

(Bukhari.)

Anas said, "The Prophet (sallallahu alayhe wa sallam) said, 'The Dajjal

will come to Madinah, and he will find angles guarding it. Neither plague

nor the Dajjal will enter it, in sha Allah." (Tirmidhi, Bukhari.)

It has been proven in the Sahih Ahadith that the Dajjal will not enter

Makkah or Madinah, because the angels will prevent him from entering these

two places which are sanctuaries and are safe from him. When he camps at

the salt-marsh (Sabkhah) of Madinah, it will be shaken by three tremors -

either physically or metaphorically - and every hypocrite will go out to

join the Dajjal. On that day, Madinah will be cleansed of its dross and

will be refined and purified; and Allah knows best.

 

The Life and Deeds of the Dajjal

 

The Dajjal will be a man, created by Allah to be a test for people at the

end of time. Many will be led astray through him, and many will be guided

through him; only the sinful will be led astray.

Al-Hafiz Ibn 'Ali al-Abar wrote in his book of history (al-Tarikh) that

the Dajjal's Kunyah (nickname or paternal title) would be Abu Yusuf.

Abu Bakrah said, "The Prophet (sallallahu alayhe wa sallam) said, "The

Dajjal's parents will remain childless for thirty years, then a one-eyed

child will be born to them. He will be very bad and will cause a great

deal of trouble. When he sleeps, his eyes will be closed but his heart (or

mind) will still be active. Then he described his parents: 'His father

will be a tall and bulky man, with a long nose like a beak; his mother

will be a huge, heavy-breasted woman."

Abu Bakrah said, "We heard that a child had been born to some of the Jews

in Madinah. Al-Zubayr ibn al-Awam and I went see his pa, and found that

they matched the description given by the Prophet (sallallahu alayhe wa

sallam). We saw the boy lying in the sun, covered with a blanket,

murmuring to himself. We asked his parents about him, and they said, 'We

remained childless for thirty years, then this one-eyed boy was born to

us. He is very bad and causes a great deal of trouble. When we went out,

we passed the boy. He asked us, 'What were you doing?.We said, 'Did you

hear us?. He said, 'Yes; when I sleep, my eyes are closed but my heart

(mind) is still active. That boy was Ibn Sayyad." (Ahmad, Tirmidhi; this

Hadith is not very strong.)

As we have already seen in the Sahih Ahadith, Malik and others think that

Ibn Sayyad was not the Dajjal; he was one of a number of "lesser dajjals."

Later he repented and embraced Islam; Allah knows best his heart and

deeds.

The "greater" Dajjal is the one mentioned in the Hadith of Fatimah bint

Qays, which she narrated from the Prophet (sallallahu alayhe wa sallam),

from Tamim al-Dari, and which includes the story of the Jassasah. The

Dajjal will be permitted to appear at the end of time, after the Muslims

have conquered a Roman city called Constantinople. He will first appear in

Isfahan, in an area known as the Jewish quarter (al-Yahudiyyah). He will

be followed by seventy thousand Jews from that area, all of them armed.

Seventy thousand Tatars and many people from Khurasan will also follow

him. At first he will appear as a tyrannical king, then he will claim to

be a prophet, then a lord. Only the most ignorant of men will follow him;

the righteous and those guided by Allah will reject him.

He will start to conquer the world country by country, fortress by

fortress, region by region, town by town; no place will remain unscathed

except Makkah and Madinah. The length of his stay on earth will be forty

days: one day like a year, one day like a month, one day like a week, and

the rest of the days like normal days, i e his stay will be approximately

one year and two and a half months. Allah will grant him many miracles,

through which whoever He wills will be astray, and the faith of the

believers will be strengthened. The descent of Jesus son of Mary, the true

Messiah, will happen at the time of the Dajjal, the false messiah. He will

descend to the minaret in the east of Damascus. The believers and true

servants of Allah will gather to support him, and the Messiah Jesus son of

Mary will lead them against the Dajjal, who at that time will be heading

for Bayt al-Maqdis (Jerusalem). He will catch up with him at 'Aqabah

'Afiq. The Dajjal will run away from him, but Jesus will catch up with him

at the gate of Ludd, and will kill him with his spear just as he is

entering it. He will say to him, "I have to deal you a blow; you cannot

escape."

When the Dajjal faces him, he will begin to dissolve like salt in water.

So Jesus will kill him with his spear at the gate of Ludd, and he will die

there, as many Sahih Ahadith indicate.

Majma ibn Jariyah is reported to have said, "I heard the Prophet

(sallallahu alayhe wa sallam) saying, 'The son of Mary will kill the

Dajjal at the gate of Ludd." (Tirmidhi.)

 

FOOTNOTE:

"When he (Dajjal) sleeps, his eyes will be closed but his heart (or mind)

will still be active" - means that his evil ideas will still come to him

even while he is asleep.


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