Every believer’s ultimate dream is to enter Jannah. One of the most beautiful descriptions in the Qur’an is where Allah describes the scene when the believers are just about to enter its gates. Yes, even the process of entering Jannah is amazing! Allah subhanahu wa ta'ala says:

“And those who had taqwa of their Rabb will be led to Jannah in groups, until when they reach it, and its gates will be opened, and its keepers will say: Peace be upon you! You have done well, so enter here to abide therein.” [Surah Az-Zumar 39: 73] 

“And those who had taqwa of their Rabb will be led to Jannah in groups”

Allah ta'ala begins this ayah by describing the characteristic of the people who are about to enter Jannah: they had Taqwa. It cannot be emphasised enough on how crucial our taqwa is in the Sight of Allah ta’ala. Allah says in another ayah: “Verily, the most honourable of you with Allah is that (believer) who has At-Taqwa.” [Surah Al-Hujraat 49: 13]

Taqwa in a nutshell is abandoning disobedience, and practising obedience. So to have taqwa of Allah is to establish His Commandments in our lives, and to keep away as best as we possibly can from His Prohibitions. We’re fallible human beings, so we’re bound to make mistakes, and alhamdulillah, Allah Al-Ghafoor Ar-Raheem is ready to accept our tawbah, as long as we return to Him in sincere repentance.

Allah says that the people of taqwa will be led/driven by the angels towards Jannah — and this part of the ayah itself is beautiful. Because it’s as if to imply that these people worked all their lives in obeying Allah subhanahu wa ta'ala, so now they don’t have to do anything any more. They’re being taken, driven by the angels towards the gates of Jannah. And they will be taken to Jannah in groups, starting with the best of them: those who are closest to Allah, then the most righteous, then the next best, and the next best. No one enters Jannah alone. We ask Allah to make us amongst the firsts to enter Jannah with our loved ones.

“until when they reach it, and its gates will be opened (before their arrival for their reception)”

I want to ask those who have performed ‘Umrah or Hajj: How did your heart react when you walked inside Masjidil-Haram, moving closer and closer towards its centre, until you finally set your eyes on the Ka’bah? Wallahi, it’s an indescribable feeling. The hearts crumble, and the eyes shed tears. 

Now imagine that you’re being taken closer, and closer towards the gates of Jannah and they are already opened for you, to welcome you, to receive you, to celebrate you.

You’re here!

You’ve made it!

You’ve reached your true, eternal and blissful home!

You’ve attained your happily-ever-after!

How would our hearts be! Subhana Allah!

And do you know how massive the gates of Jannah are? Rasulullah salla Allahu ‘alayhi wa sallam (ﷺ) said: “By Him in Whose Hand is the life of Muhammad (ﷺ), verily the distance between two door leaves of Jannah is as great as between Makkah and Hajar, or as between Makkah and Busra.” [Riyadh As-Salihin 1866 (Sahih Al-Bukhari & Sahih Muslim)]

The distance between just the two door leaves of Jannah is as great as between Makkah and Busra in Iraq. So what sort of incredible vastness and unimaginable expanse that are waiting for us *inside* Jannah? It is absolutely mind-boggling! This is from the generosity of Allah subhanahu wa ta'ala.

“and its keepers will say: Salaamun ‘alaykum (peace be upon you)! You have done well, so enter here to abide therein.”

As we stand before the gates and ready to enter, the gatekeepers of Jannah will say to us: “Salaamun ‘alaykum!” 

A beautiful greeting and du’a of peace from the angels. And they will praise us: “You have done well, so enter here to abide therein!”

As a result of having taqwa of Allah, as a result of following His Commandments, as a result of steering away from what He has prohibited, as a result of the sincere, and correct worship of Him subhanahu wa ta'ala, as a result of following and adhering to the sunnah of Rasulullah ﷺ — a believer enters Jannah by the Rahmah of Allah. This ayah circles back and reiterates the importance of having taqwa.

Then in the next ayah, Allah says: “And they will say: Alhamdulillah, Who has fulfilled His Promise to us, and has made us inherit (this) land. We can dwell in Jannah where we will; how excellent a reward for the (pious) workers!” [Surah Az-Zumar 39: 74]

When the believers see the great rewards and splendours, blessings and grand generosity, the first thing that they will say is: “Alhamdulillah.”

And this in and of itself is another beautiful point to reflect on. The people of Jannah don’t attribute their success to themselves, rather they return the praises and shukr to Allah. We need to realise that the reason why we’re able to do good deeds and to stay away from what is prohibited is only because of Allah’s Help and Protection. If Allah removes His Protection, we would fling ourselves into misdeeds and more misdeeds, and other numerous transgressions. Yes, we need to strive and put in the efforts ourselves, but at the same time, we’re constantly and desperately in need of Allah’s Rahmah, Protection, and Guidance in each and every moment of our lives.

“Alhamdulillah, Who has fulfilled His Promise to us, and has made us inherit (this) land. We can dwell in Jannah where we will”

The people of Jannah will say alhamdulillah:

(1) for Allah fulfilling His Promise — that when we remain istiqamah as Muslims, in worshipping Allah sincerely, and in following the sunnah of Rasulullah ﷺ, Allah will grant us His Jannah through His Rahmah, and 

(2) for making us able to inherit Jannah.

Can you imagine that we will one day, in shaa Allah, inherit our very own exclusive spaces in Jannah, wherever we want? And this is such an exciting part of living in Jannah because the believers will actually say word-for-word: “We can dwell in Jannah *wherever* we will!”

Such a stark difference in this worldly life! Many of us want to live near serene rivers, a pristine lake, or maybe in a corner of a cosy, elevated area. But how many of us can afford that? Instead, we have to endure loud, difficult neighbours; or a dirty, noisy industrial area. And we need to live according to our personal budgets and all sorts of other restrictions. Some of us can’t even afford a roof over one’s head.

Yet for those who attain Jannah, Allah says in another surah: “And admit them to Jannah, which He has made known to them (i.e. they will know their places in Jannah better than they used to know their homes in the world).” [Surah Muhammad 47: 6]

Your homes, your gardens, your rivers, your properties — all of them are ready and have been prepared for you in Jannah. And you will recognize your dwellings in Jannah as if you’ve dwelt there from the time they were first created!

Finally, Allah concludes the ayah, saying: “how excellent a reward for the (pious) workers!”

When we strive hard in worshipping Allah, there is nothing that is going to be more rewarding, more appreciated, more blessed than Allah’s Jannah. The only One Who can absolutely reward us is not our parents, not our teachers, not our bosses, not the society, but only Allah subhanahu wa ta'ala. So do not expect any reward from anyone that could truly do justice for that which you did good in this dunya.

And the ayah stops here.

But wait!

What happens afterwards?

What’s going to happen when we enter Jannah?

Imam Ibn Kathir rahimahullah wrote this beautiful statement in his tafseer:

“What happens after this is not mentioned; it is left for the imagination to think of its dearest wishes and be filled with hope.”

And so I advise myself and then to others: be a person of taqwa in this dunya, and Allah will reward His Jannah in the hereafter. We ask Allah ta’ala to make us people of taqwa, and to be amongst those who attain the highest level of Jannah without reckoning.




Your sister in Deen,

Aida Msr 🌸



  • Tafsir Ibn Kathir