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Question text

Some say that the context of verse 28 of the chapter of The Cow (Al-Baqarah) and verse 11 of the chapter of The Believer (Al-Mu'min) - How can ye disbelieve in God; for ye were lifeless (in your mother's womb) He brought you to life. He causeth you to die and again (He will) restore you to life then unto Him will ye be returned (2:28) and They shall say, `O, our Lord! Twice didst Thou cause us to die, and twice didst Thou give us life, and (now) we do confess our sins: Is there then away to get out (of this)?' (40:11) - are the same; for they both speak about two lifes and two deaths. Therefore, both verses have one meaning - two lifes and two deaths - and neither of the two refers to an interval life (Barzak). And what is intended by death in the first verse is the physical state of man before his earthly life and spirit was breathe into him, while death in the second verse means earthly death (the removal of the soul from the earth). And what is intended by life in the first verse is the worldly life, while life in the second verse means life in the hereafter (on the Day of Judgement).

Visits 290 categorization: Interpreting Qur’anic Verses

This saying in not correct because, the contexts of these two verses are different. In the first verse there is one (absolute) death, one deprivation of life (to cause to die), and two endowments of live, whereas in the second verse there are two deprivations of life and two endowments of life. It is clear that deprivation of life is not possible unless there is life before it, however (absolute) death is not dependent upon a previous life. Thereupon, death in the first verse is verse is different from `the deprivation of life', which comes in the first and second verses. According to this the first `deprivation of life' in the verse - Twice didst Thou cause us to die, and twice didst Thou give us life (40:11) - is after the life of this world and the first endowment of life is also after this worldly life, which is related to the interval life between heaven and hell; and the second death and life is related to the Day of Judgment.

resources and references

Book: Tafsir Al-Mizan Vol. 1 p. 111, Author: Taba'tabai, Muhammad Husayn

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