The weighing of deeds and the distribution of the books of deeds on the Day of Resurrection
The distribution of the books of deeds:
When people have been brought to account for their deeds, each person will be given the book that contains the record of all his deeds. The believer will be given his book in his right hand, as a sign of honour. He will be the one who is saved and happy on the Day of Resurrection. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
“Then as for him who will be given his Record in his right hand,
He surely, will receive an easy reckoning,
And will return to his family in joy!”
“Then as for him who will be given his Record in his right hand will say: ‘Here! read my Record!
Surely, I did believe that I shall meet my Account!’
So he shall be in a life, well-pleasing.
In a lofty Paradise,
The fruits in bunches whereof will be low and near at hand.
Eat and drink at ease for that which you have sent on before you in days past!”
But the kaafirs, hypocrites and followers of misguidance will be given their books in their left hands, from behind their backs. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
“But whosoever is given his Record behind his back,
He will invoke (for his) destruction,
And he shall enter a blazing Fire”
“But as for him who will be given his Record in his left hand, will say: ‘I wish that I had not been given my Record!
And that I had never known how my Account is!
Would that it had been my end (death)!
My wealth has not availed me;
My power (and arguments to defend myself) have gone from me!’
(It will be said): ‘Seize him and fetter him;
Then throw him in the blazing Fire.
Then fasten him with a chain whereof the length is seventy cubits!’”
When the people have been given their books, it will be said to them:
“This Our Record speaks about you with truth. Verily, We were recording what you used to do (i.e. Our angels used to record your deeds)”
“Read your book. You yourself are sufficient as a reckoner against you this Day”
With regard to the Balance:
The Balance will be set up to weigh people’s deeds. Al-Qurtubi said: “When the Reckoning is completed, then people’s deeds will be weighed, because the weighing has to do with reward and punishment. So it is apt that it should come after the Reckoning. The Reckoning is to evaluate the deeds, and the weighing is to determine the amount of reward or punishment.”
The texts indicate that the Balance is a real Balance, with two pans, in which people’s deeds will be weighed. It is a huge Balance, the size of which is known only to Allaah. The scholars differed as to whether it is one Balance in which people’s deeds will be weighed, or whether there are numerous Balances, so that each person will have his own Balance. Those who said that there will be numerous balances quote as evidence the fact that the word appears in plural form in some verses, for example (interpretation of the meaning):
“And We shall set up Balances of justice on the Day of Resurrection, then none will be dealt with unjustly in anything. And if there be the weight of a mustard seed, We will bring it. And Sufficient are We to take account”
Those who say that it will be one Balance quote as evidence the words of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him): “The Balance will be set up on the Day of Resurrection, and if the heavens and the earth were to be weighed in it, it would be sufficient to carry them. And the angels will say, ‘O Lord, who is this for?’ Allaah will say, ‘For whomsoever I will from among My slaves.’” (al-Silsilat al-Saheehah, 941). They interpret the verse in which the plural form is mentioned as referring to the large number of things to be weighed, namely words, deeds, records and people.
One of the things that indicate that words will also be weighed is the hadeeth narrated by Abu Hurayrah, according to which the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Two words which are light on the tongue but will weigh heavily in the Balance and are beloved to the Most Merciful: Subhaan Allaah il-‘Azeem, Subhaan Allaahi wa bi Hamdihi (Glory be to Allaah the Almighty, Glory and praise be to Allaah).” (Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 6406).
The fact that deeds will be weighed is indicated by the saheeh hadeeth narrated from Abu’l-Darda’ who said: “I heard the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) say, ‘There is nothing that will be placed in the Balance that will weigh more heavily than a good attitude. The one who has a good attitude will attain thereby the status of one who fasts and prays (a great deal).’” (Saheeh Sunan al-Tirmidhi, 1629)
Another thing that indicates that the books of deeds will be weighed is the hadeeth of al-Bitaaqah from ‘Abd-Allaah ibn ‘Amr ibn al-‘Aas who said, the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Allaah will separate a man belonging to my ummah in the presence of all creatures and will spread ninety-nine scrolls for him, each scroll extending as far as the eye can see. Then He will say, ‘Do you object to anything in this? Have my scribes who keep note wronged you?’ He will say, ‘No, my Lord.’ He will ask him, ‘Do you have any excuse?’ He will say, ‘No my Lord.’ Allaah will say, ‘On the contrary, you have with Us a good deed, and you will not be wronged this Day.’ A slip of paper will then be brought out, on which are the words ‘Ashhadu an laa ilaaha ill-Allaah wa ashhadu anna Muhammadan ‘abduhu wa rasooluhu (I bear witness that there is no god but Allah, and I bear witness that Muhammad is His slave and His Messenger).’ Allaah will say, ‘Bring your weight (i.e., the scrolls).’ The man will say, ‘O Lord, what is this slip of paper in comparison to these scrolls?’ And He will reply, ‘You will not be wronged.’ The scrolls will then be put in one side of the Balance and the slip of paper in the other, and the scrolls will become light and the slip of paper heavy, for nothing could compare in weight to the name of Allaah.” (Saheeh Sunan al-Tirmidhi, 2127)
One of the things that indicate that people will be weighed is the hadeeth narrated from Abu Hurayrah (may Allaah be pleased with him), according to which the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “A huge fat man will be brought on the Day of Resurrection, and he will not weigh more before Allaah than the wing of a gnat. Recite: ‘and on the Day of Resurrection, We shall assign no weight for them’ [al-Kahf 18:105 – interpretation of the meaning].” (Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 4729). It is also indicated by the fact that Ibn Mas’ood was trying to break a siwaak branch from an araak tree and he had thin legs and the wind started to buffet him, so the people laughed at him. The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said, “What are you laughing at?” They said, “O Prophet of Allaah, because his legs are so thin.” He said, “By the One in Whose hand is my soul, they will weigh more heavily in the Balance than Mount Uhud.” Its isnaad was classed as hasan by al-Albaani in Sharh al-Tahhaawiyyah, no. 571, p. 418
We ask Allaah to make us weigh heavily in the Balance.
And Allaah knows best.