Fourth Step: Battles between angels and devils.

FOURTH STEP: The All-Glorious One, Who is the Sustainer, Controller, and Creator of all the worlds, has numerous principles and rules, and very many appellations, titles, and most Beautiful Names, which are all different. Whichever Name and title necessitated sending angels to the ranks of the Prophet (PBUH)’s Companions in order to do battle against unbelievers also required that there should be battle between angels and devils, and contest between the good inhabitants of the heavens and the evil inhabitants of the earth. The All-Powerful One of Glory, Who holds within the grasp of His power the breathing-in and breathing-out of the unbelievers, does not wipe them out with a single command, a single trumpet-blast. With His title of universal Sustainer and Names of All-Wise and Controller, He inaugurates a field of examination and contest.

If the comparison is not mistaken, we see that a king has numerous different titles and names in respect of the different areas of his rule. For example, in the judicature he is known by the name of Wise Judge, in the army as Commander-in-Chief, in the office of the Shaykh al-Islam as Khalifa, and in the civil service as Sultan. His obedient subjects call him Gracious Sovereign, while the rebellious call him All-Compelling Ruler. You may think of further examples.

Thus, it sometimes happens that such an exalted king, whose subjects are all within his power, does not issue the command to execute an impotent and contemptible rebel; he sends him to court under his name of Wise Judge. Also, he knows a both capable and honest official who is worthy of being favoured, but he does not favour him with his particular knowledge by private telephone. Instead, under his titles relating to the majesty of sovereignty and expedients of government, he opens a field of competition in order to make public how deserving the official is of reward, and he gives the command to his minister and invites the people to watch. He has organized a welcoming ceremony, and, as a result of a grand, elevated trial and examination, favours him in a distinguished assembly; he proclaims his worthiness. You can think of further examples in the same way.

Thus, And Allah’s is the highest similitude, the Monarch of Pre-Eternity and Post-Eternity has numerous Most Beautiful Names. Through the manifestations of His glory and appearances of His beauty, He has many attributes and titles. The Name, title, and attribute which necessitate the existence of light and darkness, summer and winter, and Paradise and Hell, require also numerous general laws like the law of generation, those of competition and mutual assistance, and the making general to a degree also of the law of contest. From the contest of inspirations and satanic whisperings around the heart to the contest between angels and devils on the bounds of the heavens, they require that law to be all-embracing.

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Fifth Step: The stoning of evils by angels.

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