Answered by Ustadh Ali Ataie

Question: I know many Muslims who do not pray. They were brought up in Muslim families, but all they do is wear the latest fashions, display outer beauty, and engage in backstabbing and insulting others. Some do well in school and get good jobs making good money. Some girls chase after rich, good looking husbands.  

Meanwhile they are wasting their parent’s money on buying clothes.  They mock simple boys and girls who are good in character. They use people for their benefit. They are two faced. If they don’t ever change, will they still be going to heaven in the end as they are Muslims? And what about the good persons who are still getting beaten up by these people? These bad Muslims get away with their crimes.

Answer: Assalam alaykum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu,

I hope this message finds you well.

Only Allah Knows

Our Master Muhammad (peace and blessings of God be upon him) said: “Whoever says with sincerity, ‘Laa ilaha ill’Lah, Muhammadu’ rasulullah, will enter Paradise.” Therefore those who are truly Muslims, will enter Paradise as this is the promise of Allah and His Messenger. Unfortunately, however, many Muslims today, the youth in particular, have not even studied the very basics of their faith and in many cases, have actually adopted beliefs that are completely foreign to the Islamic tradition.

We ask Allah ta ‘ala to guide them and all of us to the Truth. Ameen. Only Allah knows the states of the hearts and minds. I mean no offense to you, but if Allah does decide to forgive these believers for what you perceive to be “bad” character and actions, can you really say that they “got away” with anything? If so, then you have put yourself into a dangerous position of questioning Allah’s judgment by imputing your conception of right and wrong upon Him.

Allah’s Justice and Mercy Are Beyond Our Comprehension

Remember that Allah is the most just of all who can possibly show justice and He is the wisest of all judges. We must be careful not to impose our limited understandings of mercy and justice upon Allah; In other words, He knows exactly what He is doing and we have to trust Him as our Lord. If Allah judges that a certain individual will be entered into Paradise, we are in no position whatsoever to question His judgement – and why would we?

What appears to be unjust, evil, unnecessary, or strange from the vista of our extremely limited rational faculties may very well be the epitome of justice and/or mercy from Allah’s “vista.” This is not to say that we don’t have the ability to know right and wrong and have a sense of justice; we do, but these capacities are limited to this world and extend from the exercise of our human intellects – which we must utilize. A good policy is to have a good opinion of people and pray for them (or advise them in a gentle way), and know that Allah sees and hears all and that He is exalted in power.

We Want Good for Humanity

It’s also important to remember that the believer may receive trials and tribulations in his life which may actually serve as merciful reminders that he needs to clean up his act and reorient himself towards Allah. If these reminders go unheeded, we believe that there is punishment in the grave, severe reckoning on the Day of Judgment, and even time spent in Jehannam for recalcitrant believers.

May Allah save us all! If we really knew the realities of these torments we would not wish them upon our worst enemies, so let’s not be vindictive towards people, let alone other believers. At times in this life it seems that people may “get away with their crimes”” (as you put it) but you must understand that with Allah, everything is taken into account and Allah’s judgment is absolutely perfect.

We Are All in Need of Saving Mercy

Finally, all of us are at some level “two-faced” and hypocritical; this is our human condition. Just as we want Allah to forgive us and have mercy upon us, let’s also want that for humanity as well.

We must not let our envy for others cause us to revile them; Allah knows what He is doing even if we don’t (know what He’s doing). If people have wealth or status let’s just say Masha’Allah, and ask Allah to give them the providence to use these gifts in a way that is pleasing to Him.

And Allah knows best.

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"Whoever guides someone to goodness will have a similar reward"-- The Prophet (Peace and Blessings Be Upon Him)