What is the ruling on claiming that Hellfire will eventually cease to exist and that the blessings of Jannah (Paradise) are nothing but metaphors?
What is the ruling on claiming that Kafirs (disbelievers) will not abide in Hellfire eternally?
There are many proofs from the Qur'an and the Sunnah indicating that Hellfire will never cease to exist and that the Kafirs will abide in Hellfire eternally. Allah says,
This, because you took the revelations of Allâh (this Qur’ân) in mockery, and the life of the world deceived you. So this Day, they shall not be taken out from there (Hell), nor shall they be returned to the worldly life, (so that they repent to Allâh, and beg His Pardon for their sins).
Surely! Those who disbelieved in Our Ayât (proofs, evidence, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.), We shall burn them in Fire. As often as their skins are roasted through, We shall change them for other skins that they may taste the punishment.
And he whom Allâh guides, he is led aright; but he whom He sends astray, for such you will find no Auliyâ’ (helpers and protectors), besides Him, and We shall gather them together on the Day of Resurrection on their faces, blind, dumb and deaf; their abode will be Hell; whenever it abates, We shall increase for them the fierceness of the Fire.
That is their recompense, because they denied Our Ayât (proofs, evidence, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) and said: "When we are bones and fragments, shall we really be raised up as a new creation?"
But those who disbelieved (in the Oneness of Allâh - Islâmic Monotheism) and denied Our Ayât (proofs, evidence, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.), they will be the dwellers of the Fire, to dwell therein forever. And worst indeed is that destination.
(Part No. 3; Page No. 487)
...and whosoever disobeys Allâh and His Messenger, then verily, for him is the Fire of Hell, he shall dwell therein forever.
Verily, the Mujrimûn (criminals, sinners, disbelievers) will be in the torment of Hell to abide therein forever.
(The torment) will not be lightened for them, and they will be plunged into destruction with deep regrets, sorrows and in despair therein.
We wronged them not, but they were the Zâlimûn (polytheists, wrong-doers).
And they will cry: "O Malik (Keeper of Hell)! Let your Lord make an end of us." He will say: "Verily, you shall abide forever."
Indeed We have brought the truth (Muhammad صلى الله عليه و سلم with the Qur’ân) to you, but most of you have a hatred for the truth.
And of mankind are some who take (for worship) others besides Allâh as rivals (to Allâh). They love them as they love Allâh. But those who believe, love Allâh more (than anything else). If only, those who do wrong could see, when they will see the torment, that all power belongs to Allâh and that Allâh is Severe in punishment.
To His saying
Thus Allâh will show them their deeds as regrets for them. And they will never get out of the Fire.
Verily, those who belie Our Ayât (proofs, evidence, verses, lessons, signs, revelations) and treat them with arrogance, for them the gates of heaven will not be opened, and they will not enter Paradise until the camel goes through the eye of the needle (which is impossible). Thus do We recompense the Mujrimûn (criminals, polytheists and sinners).
Theirs will be a bed of Hell (Fire), and over them coverings (of Hell-fire). Thus do We recompense the Zâlimûn (polytheists and wrong-doers).
But those who disbelieve (in the Oneness of Allâh - Islâmic Monotheism), for them will be the Fire of Hell. Neither will it have a complete killing effect on them so that they die, nor shall its torment be lightened for them. Thus do We requite every disbeliever!
Therein they will cry: "Our Lord! Bring us out, we shall do righteous good deeds, not (the evil deeds) that we used to do." (Allâh will reply): "Did We not give you lives long enough, so that whosoever would receive admonition could receive it? And the warner came to you. So taste you (the evil of your deeds). For the Zâlimûn (polytheists and wrong-doers) there is no helper."
(Part No. 3; Page No. 488)
Truly, Hell is a place of ambush -
A dwelling place for the Tâghûn (those who transgress the boundary limits set by Allâh like polytheists, disbelievers in the Oneness of Allâh, hyprocrites, sinners, criminals),
to His saying
So taste you (the results of your evil actions). No increase shall We give you, except in torment.
In addition, there are many other Ayahs which indicate that the Kafirs will abide in Hell for eternity and will never come out; it will never cease to exist. Taken all together, the implication of these proofs is stronger than the assumption that it is metaphoric.With regard to Jannah (Paradise), it is the abode of reward on the Day of Resurrection for those who believed and did righteous deeds. In it there are whatever delights people may desire and what no eye has ever seen, no ear has ever heard of, and what nobody could ever have imagined. Those who enter Jannah will enjoy real pleasures in both the physical and spiritual sense; they will live in it forever. It will never cease to exist and they will never leave it; their joy will never come to an end, and they will have nothing to disturb their joy. This view is supported by definitive texts as well as the consensus of the scholars and believers. Allah says,
The description of the Paradise which the Muttaqûn (the pious - See V.2:2) have been promised: Underneath it rivers flow, its provision is eternal and so is its shade; this is the end (final destination) of the Muttaqûn (the pious - See V.2:2), and the end (final destination) of the disbelievers is Fire. (See Verse 47:15)
"Truly! The Muttaqûn (the pious - See V.2:2) will be amidst Gardens and water-springs (Paradise).
"(It will be said to them): ‘Enter therein (Paradise), in peace and security.’
"And We shall remove from their breasts any deep feeling of bitterness (that they may have). (So they will be like) brothers facing each other on thrones.
"No sense of fatigue shall touch them, nor shall they (ever) be asked to leave it."
(Part No. 3; Page No. 489) Allah also says,
This is a Reminder. And verily, for the Muttaqûn (the pious - See V.2:2) is a good final return (Paradise),
‘Adn (Eden) Paradise (everlasting Gardens), whose doors will be opened for them.
Therein they will recline; therein they will call for fruits in abundance and drinks;
And beside them will be Qâsirât-at-Tarf [chaste females (wives) restraining their glances (desiring none except their husbands)], (and) of equal ages.
This it is what you (Al-Muttaqûn - the pious - see V.2:2) are promised for the Day of Reckoning!
(It will be said to them)! Verily, this is Our Provision which will never finish.
Friends on that Day will be foes one to another except Al-Muttaqûn (the pious. See V.2:2).
(It will be said to the true believers of Islâmic Monotheism): My worshippers! No fear shall be on you this Day, nor shall you grieve,
(You) who believed in Our Ayât (proofs, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) and were Muslims (i.e. who submit totally to Allâh’s Will, and believe in the Oneness of Allâh - Islâmic Monotheism).
Enter Paradise, you and your wives, in happiness.
Trays of gold and cups will be passed round them; (there will be) therein all that inner-selves could desire, and all that eyes could delight in and you will abide therein forever.
This is the Paradise which you have been made to inherit because of your deeds which you used to do (in the life of the world).
Therein for you will be fruits in plenty, of which you will eat (as you desire).
And those who are blessed, they will be in Paradise, abiding therein for all the time that the heavens and the earth endure, except as your Lord wills: a gift without an end.
i.e. except the period which they will not spend in Jannah before entering it. This is why Allah concludes the Ayah saying,
...a gift without an end.
This is to confirm the eternity of its pleasures which its dwellers will enjoy, unlike those who are mentioned in Surah Al-Dukhan. Allah says,
Verily, the Muttaqûn (the pious. See V.2:2), will be in place of Security (Paradise).
Among Gardens and Springs,
Dressed in fine silk and (also) in thick silk, facing each other,
So (it will be). And We shall marry them to Hûr (fair female) with wide, lovely eyes.
They will call therein for every kind of fruit in peace and security;
They will never taste death therein except the first death (of this world), and He will save them from the torment of the blazing Fire,
As a Bounty from your Lord! That will be the supreme success!
(Part No. 3; Page No. 490) He excepted the first death to show that they will have eternal life and will never die. This exception may be meant to show the generality of Allah's Will and that it comes to pass over everything. Those who will enter Jannah and those who will enter Hellfire will abide there forever by His Will, Choice, Favor, and Justice; there is nothing mandatory for Him, High Exalted is Allah above this.It has been authentically reported that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said,
It will be said to the people of Paradise: You are to live healthfully and never get sick, to live and never die, to enjoy youth and never grow old, and to enjoy bliss and never feel miserable.
It is also reported that he (peace be upon him) said,
Death will be brought on the Day of Resurrection in the form of a good white ram.
then the command will be given for slaughtering it, and it will then be said, 'O people of Jannah, there is an everlasting life for you and no death; O people of Hellfire, there is an everlasting life and there is no death!
Muslim in his Sahih.
In many Ayahs Allah confirms that both Jannah and Hell are eternal and will last forever, and that the believers will abide in Jannah forever and the disbelievers will abide in Hell forever. This is also proven by the Sunnah of the Prophet (peace be upon him) which provides many details that leave no room for any doubt or a possible metaphoric connotation of these clear texts. (Part No. 3; Page No. 491) Whoever doubts this fact or misinterprets the clear texts - is following whims and desires and displace words from their right places; therefore they are considered disbelievers.