The Islam of Firoun
Q: In the story of Musa (Alayhis Salaam), just before Pharoahe dies, he repents and declares himself a Muslim, but his Islam is not accepted. Is the situation the same for us today: if a non-Muslim doesn’t accept Islam until a catastrophy happens and he knows he will die, will his Islam not be accepted?
A: The hadith explains that the imaan of a person will be accepted till the gurgling sound is not heard from him. When the gurgling sound at the time of death is heard, then Imaan will no longer be accepted. It is at that time when the scenes of the hereafter become visible to the dying person. Hence the Imaan that he will bring at that time will be after seeing the signs of Allah Ta’ala and the signs of the hereafter. Since imaan is believing in the unseen after the scenes of the hereafter become visible to the dying person and then he believes, this will no longer be called imaan. However the Imaan that a person brings before this time will be accepted. Firoun proclaimed Imaan at the time the scenes of the hereafter became visible and manifest before him. Thus his imaan was rejected.
And Allah Ta’ala (الله تعالى) knows best.
عن ابن عمر، عن النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم قال إن الله يقبل توبة العبد ما لم يغرغر (ترمذي #3537)
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