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Quranic contradiction on whether all people will receive their accounts on judgement day?


Missionary Sam Shamoun from the anti-Islamic website Ansswering-Islam believes he has come up with a contradiction between the Quran, and the sayings of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) in the hadiths, or as Shamoun calls it, “How Muhammad’s Sunna Trumps the Quran Once Again”.

Shamoun writes:

According to the Quran, every person must face the judgment of Allah in order to give an account and be recompensed for everything s/he has done and earned.

How (will it be) when We gather them together on the Day about which there is no doubt (i.e. the Day of Resurrection). And each person will be paid in full what he has earned? And they will not be dealt with unjustly. S. 3:25 Hilali-Khan 

On the Day when every person will be confronted with all the good he has done, and all the evil he has done, he will wish that there were a great distance between him and his evil. And Allah warns you against Himself (His Punishment) and Allah is full of Kindness to the (His) slaves. S. 3:30 Hilali-Khan

that God may recompense every soul for its earnings; surely God is swift at the reckoning.” S. 14:51 Arberry

And when the written pages of deeds (good and bad) of every person shall be laid open; And when the heaven shall be stripped off and taken away from its place; And when Hell-fire shall be kindled to fierce ablaze. And when Paradise shall be brought near, (Then) every person will know what he has brought (of good and evil). S. 81:10-14 Hilali-Khan – cf. Q. 2:281; 3:161; 6:70; 10:30, 54; 20:15; 39:70; 40:17; 45:22

Indeed as Shamoun rightfully points out, according to the Quran everybody will eventually be presented with their deeds, both their good and bad, after which they shall be judged for all they have done while they were alive.

Shamoun though thinks he has found a contradiction, and he writes:

Muhammad, on the other hand, contradicted these crystal texts from his own scripture sine he told his followers that there will be 70,000 of his followers who will enter paradise without having to face judgment in order to give an account for their actions:

Narrated Ibn 'Abbas: Allah's Apostle said, “Nations were displayed before me; one or two prophets would pass by along with a few followers. A prophet would pass by accompanied by nobody. Then a big crowd of people passed in front of me and I asked, ‘Who are they Are they my followers?’ It was said, 'No. It is Moses and his followers.’ It was said to me, 'Look at the horizon.' Behold! There was a multitude of people filling the horizon. Then it was said to me, 'Look there and there about the stretching sky! Behold! There was a multitude filling the horizon,' It was said to me, 'This is your nation out of whom seventy thousand shall enter Paradise without reckoning.'” Then the Prophet entered his house without telling his companions who they (the 70,000) were. So the people started talking about the issue and said, "It is we who have believed in Allah and followed His Apostle; therefore those people are either ourselves or our children who are born m the Islamic era, for we were born in the Pre-lslamic Period of Ignorance.'' When the Prophet heard of that, he came out and said. "Those people are those who do not treat themselves with Ruqya, nor do they believe in bad or good omen (from birds etc.) nor do they get themselves branded (Cauterized). But they put their trust (only) in their Lord " On that 'Ukasha bin Muhsin said, "Am I one of them, O Allah's Apostle?” The Prophet said, "Yes." Then another person got up and said, "Am I one of them?" The Prophet said, “'Ukasha has anticipated you." (Sahih al-Bukhari, Volume 7, Book 71, Number 606)

Narrated Ibn Abbas: Allah's Apostle said, "Seventy thousand people of my followers will enter Paradise without accounts, and they are those who do not practice Ar-Ruqya and do not see an evil omen in things, and put their trust in their Lord.  (Sahih al-Bukhari, Volume 8, Book 76, Number 479)

Now this places Muslims in a dilemma since this means that the Quran is either right, and therefore Muhammad’s sunna is wrong, or the Quran is grossly mistaken.

Shamoun presents two hadiths that quote the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) as saying that 70,000 of his followers will enter paradise without accounts, and without a reckoning. According to Shamoun in his own words, this puts Muslims in a ‘dilemma’ and either the Quran is right, or the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) is wrong.

In actuality there is no ‘dilemma’ for the Muslims, the only problem here unfortunately is with Mr. Shamoun’s limited thinking, or his use of critical thinking, though in this case you don’t really need to utilize critical thinking.

So how does one address this supposed contradiction? There is no contradiction, that’s the first point that needs to be established. As anyone knows, there is something called the exception to the rule, which is defined as:

Anything excluded from or not in conformance with a general rule, principle, class, etc. (

The 70,000 Muslims who will have no reckoning are therefore the exception to the general rule that all people will be provided with an account of their deeds. All people will indeed be provided with their reckoning, however from all these people 70,000 will be excluded, as they are the exception to the general ruling, very simple and straightforward.

So much for Shamoun’s ‘dilemma’.  


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