Another question is regarding the punishment of criminals in the Hereafter. The Islamic belief is that on the Day of Judgment people receive the rewards or the punishment of their worldly deeds accordingly. Although not all the people of Hell will suffer eternally, there are some groups who will inevitably be punished forever.

The question, now, is why should a person who has committed sins in a limited time of his/her worldly life be punished eternally? A permanent punishment for an impermanent sin seems incompatible with the justice of God.

The answer is that, man’s punishment in the Hereafter is, in fact, the natural reaction of his/her own deeds. In other words, divine punishments, as well as rewards in the Hereafter, are the inevitable consequences of our actions in this world, on the basis of the law of cause and effect. They are not conventional events to be agreed upon. As an example, a person speeding and driving negligently may suffer disability for the rest of his life. While it seems unfair that he or she suffers for 50 years due to a few minutes of negligence, this is the natural order of the world. 

Furthermore, God is aware of our future choices, and those who suffer eternally in Hell are those that, if left on Earth to live forever, would have sinned and caused corruption forever. They were given chances to remedy themselves in this life, but they only became more arrogant and sin and corruption became an essential part of their nature.