Does missing prayers on purpose(out of laziness, etc) make one become an unbeliever? Or, are they a fasiq who could insha allah eventually reach jannah even though they missed prayers.
Islaam has laid great emphasizes on performing Salaah at their prescribed times and warned against delaying them from the times or not performing at all. It is narrated on the authority of Jabir (رضي الله عنه) that the Nabee of Allaah ﷺhad said, “Between a man and disbelief and paganism is the abandonment of Salaah.” (Saheeh Muslim, Kitaabul-Imaan) The Nabee of ﷺ is also reported to have said, “That which differentiates us from the disbelievers and hypocrites is our performance of Salaah. He who abandons it, becomes a disbeliever.” (Tirmizee)
Ulamaa are of the opinion that the injunction of Kufr mentioned in these Ahadith is for the one who believes leaving Salaah is permissible whereas the one who leaves Salaah because of laziness is not a Kafir. But there are Ulamaa who view that if such a person does not repent then he should be subjected to Hadd-death punishment. Other Ulamaa opine that such a person should be subjected to corporal punishment till he begins performing Salaah. However, these Ahadith make it clear that leaving Salaah without any valid reason is an act of Kufr and there is no difference between a person who leaves Salaah and the one who disbelieves. How severe is not to perform Salaah!
However, Ahlussunnah Wal-Jamaa’h are of the option that Ahluttauheed-true believers) will eventually reach Jannah after getting purified from the major sins they committed. Jannah is their eternal destination as mentioned in different Saheeh Ahadith. On the other hand, Mu’tazilah and their likes are opinioned that those who commit major sins will be sent to Jahannam forever because of the Hadith of Saheeh Muslim where the word “Forever” is added. The answer to this addition from Ahussunnah is that the addition is from the narrator. Since this addition is not mentioned in the Riwaah of Bukhari and Imam Tirmizi also did not mention it. After reporting the same, Imam Tirmizi said, “وهو الاصح”. (Umdatul-Qaree, Babu Maa Ja-aa Fee Qatlinnaf 4:192)
Therefore, a Muslim though he has committed grave sins will eventually reach Jannah. This the Maslak of Ahussunnah Wal-Jamaa’h.
والله اعلم بالصواب