Surah Al-A’raf In Arabic
المص ﴿1﴾ كِتَابٌ أُنْزِلَ إِلَيْكَ فَلَا يَكُنْ فِي صَدْرِكَ حَرَجٌ مِنْهُ لِتُنْذِرَ بِهِ وَذِكْرَىٰ لِلْمُؤْمِنِينَ ﴿2﴾ اتَّبِعُوا مَا أُنْزِلَ إِلَيْكُمْ مِنْ رَبِّكُمْ وَلَا تَتَّبِعُوا مِنْ دُونِهِ أَوْلِيَاءَ ۗ قَلِيلًا مَا تَذَكَّرُونَ ﴿3﴾ وَكَمْ مِنْ قَرْيَةٍ أَهْلَكْنَاهَا فَجَاءَهَا بَأْسُنَا بَيَاتًا أَوْ هُمْ قَائِلُونَ ﴿4﴾ فَمَا كَانَ دَعْوَاهُمْ إِذْ جَاءَهُمْ بَأْسُنَا إِلَّا أَنْ قَالُوا إِنَّا كُنَّا ظَالِمِينَ ﴿5﴾ فَلَنَسْأَلَنَّ الَّذِينَ أُرْسِلَ إِلَيْهِمْ وَلَنَسْأَلَنَّ الْمُرْسَلِينَ ﴿6﴾ فَلَنَقُصَّنَّ عَلَيْهِمْ بِعِلْمٍ ۖ وَمَا كُنَّا غَائِبِينَ ﴿7﴾ وَالْوَزْنُ يَوْمَئِذٍ الْحَقُّ ۚ فَمَنْ ثَقُلَتْ مَوَازِينُهُ فَأُولَٰئِكَ هُمُ الْمُفْلِحُونَ ﴿8﴾ وَمَنْ خَفَّتْ مَوَازِينُهُ فَأُولَٰئِكَ الَّذِينَ خَسِرُوا أَنْفُسَهُمْ بِمَا كَانُوا بِآيَاتِنَا يَظْلِمُونَ ﴿9﴾ وَلَقَدْ مَكَّنَّاكُمْ فِي الْأَرْضِ وَجَعَلْنَا لَكُمْ فِيهَا مَعَايِشَ ۗ قَلِيلًا مَا تَشْكُرُونَ ﴿10﴾ وَلَقَدْ خَلَقْنَاكُمْ ثُمَّ صَوَّرْنَاكُمْ ثُمَّ قُلْنَا لِلْمَلَائِكَةِ اسْجُدُوا لِآدَمَ فَسَجَدُوا إِلَّا إِبْلِيسَ لَمْ يَكُنْ مِنَ السَّاجِدِينَ ﴿11﴾ قَالَ مَا مَنَعَكَ أَلَّا تَسْجُدَ إِذْ أَمَرْتُكَ ۖ قَالَ أَنَا خَيْرٌ مِنْهُ خَلَقْتَنِي مِنْ نَارٍ وَخَلَقْتَهُ مِنْ طِينٍ ﴿12﴾ قَالَ فَاهْبِطْ مِنْهَا فَمَا يَكُونُ لَكَ أَنْ تَتَكَبَّرَ فِيهَا فَاخْرُجْ إِنَّكَ مِنَ الصَّاغِرِينَ ﴿13﴾ قَالَ أَنْظِرْنِي إِلَىٰ يَوْمِ يُبْعَثُونَ ﴿14﴾ قَالَ إِنَّكَ مِنَ الْمُنْظَرِينَ ﴿15﴾ قَالَ فَبِمَا أَغْوَيْتَنِي لَأَقْعُدَنَّ لَهُمْ صِرَاطَكَ الْمُسْتَقِيمَ ﴿16﴾ ثُمَّ لَآتِيَنَّهُمْ مِنْ بَيْنِ أَيْدِيهِمْ وَمِنْ خَلْفِهِمْ وَعَنْ أَيْمَانِهِمْ وَعَنْ شَمَائِلِهِمْ ۖ وَلَا تَجِدُ أَكْثَرَهُمْ شَاكِرِينَ ﴿17﴾ قَالَ اخْرُجْ مِنْهَا مَذْءُومًا مَدْحُورًا ۖ لَمَنْ تَبِعَكَ مِنْهُمْ لَأَمْلَأَنَّ جَهَنَّمَ مِنْكُمْ أَجْمَعِينَ ﴿18﴾ وَيَا آدَمُ اسْكُنْ أَنْتَ وَزَوْجُكَ الْجَنَّةَ فَكُلَا مِنْ حَيْثُ شِئْتُمَا وَلَا تَقْرَبَا هَٰذِهِ الشَّجَرَةَ فَتَكُونَا مِنَ الظَّالِمِينَ ﴿19﴾ فَوَسْوَسَ لَهُمَا الشَّيْطَانُ لِيُبْدِيَ لَهُمَا مَا وُورِيَ عَنْهُمَا مِنْ سَوْآتِهِمَا وَقَالَ مَا نَهَاكُمَا رَبُّكُمَا عَنْ هَٰذِهِ الشَّجَرَةِ إِلَّا أَنْ تَكُونَا مَلَكَيْنِ أَوْ تَكُونَا مِنَ الْخَالِدِينَ ﴿20﴾ وَقَاسَمَهُمَا إِنِّي لَكُمَا لَمِنَ النَّاصِحِينَ ﴿21﴾ فَدَلَّاهُمَا بِغُرُورٍ ۚ فَلَمَّا ذَاقَا الشَّجَرَةَ بَدَتْ لَهُمَا سَوْآتُهُمَا وَطَفِقَا يَخْصِفَانِ عَلَيْهِمَا مِنْ وَرَقِ الْجَنَّةِ ۖ وَنَادَاهُمَا رَبُّهُمَا أَلَمْ أَنْهَكُمَا عَنْ تِلْكُمَا الشَّجَرَةِ وَأَقُلْ لَكُمَا إِنَّ الشَّيْطَانَ لَكُمَا عَدُوٌّ مُبِينٌ ﴿22﴾ قَالَا رَبَّنَا ظَلَمْنَا أَنْفُسَنَا وَإِنْ لَمْ تَغْفِرْ لَنَا وَتَرْحَمْنَا لَنَكُونَنَّ مِنَ الْخَاسِرِينَ ﴿23﴾ قَالَ اهْبِطُوا بَعْضُكُمْ لِبَعْضٍ عَدُوٌّ ۖ وَلَكُمْ فِي الْأَرْضِ مُسْتَقَرٌّ وَمَتَاعٌ إِلَىٰ حِينٍ ﴿24﴾ قَالَ فِيهَا تَحْيَوْنَ وَفِيهَا تَمُوتُونَ وَمِنْهَا تُخْرَجُونَ ﴿25﴾ يَا بَنِي آدَمَ قَدْ أَنْزَلْنَا عَلَيْكُمْ لِبَاسًا يُوَارِي سَوْآتِكُمْ وَرِيشًا ۖ وَلِبَاسُ التَّقْوَىٰ ذَٰلِكَ خَيْرٌ ۚ ذَٰلِكَ مِنْ آيَاتِ اللَّهِ لَعَلَّهُمْ يَذَّكَّرُونَ ﴿26﴾ يَا بَنِي آدَمَ لَا يَفْتِنَنَّكُمُ الشَّيْطَانُ كَمَا أَخْرَجَ أَبَوَيْكُمْ مِنَ الْجَنَّةِ يَنْزِعُ عَنْهُمَا لِبَاسَهُمَا لِيُرِيَهُمَا سَوْآتِهِمَا ۗ إِنَّهُ يَرَاكُمْ هُوَ وَقَبِيلُهُ مِنْ حَيْثُ لَا تَرَوْنَهُمْ ۗ إِنَّا جَعَلْنَا الشَّيَاطِينَ أَوْلِيَاءَ لِلَّذِينَ لَا يُؤْمِنُونَ ﴿27﴾ وَإِذَا فَعَلُوا فَاحِشَةً قَالُوا وَجَدْنَا عَلَيْهَا آبَاءَنَا وَاللَّهُ أَمَرَنَا بِهَا ۗ قُلْ إِنَّ اللَّهَ لَا يَأْمُرُ بِالْفَحْشَاءِ ۖ أَتَقُولُونَ عَلَى اللَّهِ مَا لَا تَعْلَمُونَ ﴿28﴾ قُلْ أَمَرَ رَبِّي بِالْقِسْطِ ۖ وَأَقِيمُوا وُجُوهَكُمْ عِنْدَ كُلِّ مَسْجِدٍ وَادْعُوهُ مُخْلِصِينَ لَهُ الدِّينَ ۚ كَمَا بَدَأَكُمْ تَعُودُونَ ﴿29﴾ فَرِيقًا هَدَىٰ وَفَرِيقًا حَقَّ عَلَيْهِمُ الضَّلَالَةُ ۗ إِنَّهُمُ اتَّخَذُوا الشَّيَاطِينَ أَوْلِيَاءَ مِنْ دُونِ اللَّهِ وَيَحْسَبُونَ أَنَّهُمْ مُهْتَدُونَ ﴿30﴾ يَا بَنِي آدَمَ خُذُوا زِينَتَكُمْ عِنْدَ كُلِّ مَسْجِدٍ وَكُلُوا وَاشْرَبُوا وَلَا تُسْرِفُوا ۚ إِنَّهُ لَا يُحِبُّ الْمُسْرِفِينَ ﴿31﴾ قُلْ مَنْ حَرَّمَ زِينَةَ اللَّهِ الَّتِي أَخْرَجَ لِعِبَادِهِ وَالطَّيِّبَاتِ مِنَ الرِّزْقِ ۚ قُلْ هِيَ لِلَّذِينَ آمَنُوا فِي الْحَيَاةِ الدُّنْيَا خَالِصَةً يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ ۗ كَذَٰلِكَ نُفَصِّلُ الْآيَاتِ لِقَوْمٍ يَعْلَمُونَ ﴿32﴾ قُلْ إِنَّمَا حَرَّمَ رَبِّيَ الْفَوَاحِشَ مَا ظَهَرَ مِنْهَا وَمَا بَطَنَ وَالْإِثْمَ وَالْبَغْيَ بِغَيْرِ الْحَقِّ وَأَنْ تُشْرِكُوا بِاللَّهِ مَا لَمْ يُنَزِّلْ بِهِ سُلْطَانًا وَأَنْ تَقُولُوا عَلَى اللَّهِ مَا لَا تَعْلَمُونَ ﴿33﴾ وَلِكُلِّ أُمَّةٍ أَجَلٌ ۖ فَإِذَا جَاءَ أَجَلُهُمْ لَا يَسْتَأْخِرُونَ سَاعَةً ۖ وَلَا يَسْتَقْدِمُونَ ﴿34﴾ يَا بَنِي آدَمَ إِمَّا يَأْتِيَنَّكُمْ رُسُلٌ مِنْكُمْ يَقُصُّونَ عَلَيْكُمْ آيَاتِي ۙ فَمَنِ اتَّقَىٰ وَأَصْلَحَ فَلَا خَوْفٌ عَلَيْهِمْ وَلَا هُمْ يَحْزَنُونَ ﴿35﴾ وَالَّذِينَ كَذَّبُوا بِآيَاتِنَا وَاسْتَكْبَرُوا عَنْهَا أُولَٰئِكَ أَصْحَابُ النَّارِ ۖ هُمْ فِيهَا خَالِدُونَ ﴿36﴾ فَمَنْ أَظْلَمُ مِمَّنِ افْتَرَىٰ عَلَى اللَّهِ كَذِبًا أَوْ كَذَّبَ بِآيَاتِهِ ۚ أُولَٰئِكَ يَنَالُهُمْ نَصِيبُهُمْ مِنَ الْكِتَابِ ۖ حَتَّىٰ إِذَا جَاءَتْهُمْ رُسُلُنَا يَتَوَفَّوْنَهُمْ قَالُوا أَيْنَ مَا كُنْتُمْ تَدْعُونَ مِنْ دُونِ اللَّهِ ۖ قَالُوا ضَلُّوا عَنَّا وَشَهِدُوا عَلَىٰ أَنْفُسِهِمْ أَنَّهُمْ كَانُوا كَافِرِينَ ﴿37﴾ قَالَ ادْخُلُوا فِي أُمَمٍ قَدْ خَلَتْ مِنْ قَبْلِكُمْ مِنَ الْجِنِّ وَالْإِنْسِ فِي النَّارِ ۖ كُلَّمَا دَخَلَتْ أُمَّةٌ لَعَنَتْ أُخْتَهَا ۖ حَتَّىٰ إِذَا ادَّارَكُوا فِيهَا جَمِيعًا قَالَتْ أُخْرَاهُمْ لِأُولَاهُمْ رَبَّنَا هَٰؤُلَاءِ أَضَلُّونَا فَآتِهِمْ عَذَابًا ضِعْفًا مِنَ النَّارِ ۖ قَالَ لِكُلٍّ ضِعْفٌ وَلَٰكِنْ لَا تَعْلَمُونَ ﴿38﴾ وَقَالَتْ أُولَاهُمْ لِأُخْرَاهُمْ فَمَا كَانَ لَكُمْ عَلَيْنَا مِنْ فَضْلٍ فَذُوقُوا الْعَذَابَ بِمَا كُنْتُمْ تَكْسِبُونَ ﴿39﴾ إِنَّ الَّذِينَ كَذَّبُوا بِآيَاتِنَا وَاسْتَكْبَرُوا عَنْهَا لَا تُفَتَّحُ لَهُمْ أَبْوَابُ السَّمَاءِ وَلَا يَدْخُلُونَ الْجَنَّةَ حَتَّىٰ يَلِجَ الْجَمَلُ فِي سَمِّ الْخِيَاطِ ۚ وَكَذَٰلِكَ نَجْزِي الْمُجْرِمِينَ ﴿40﴾ لَهُمْ مِنْ جَهَنَّمَ مِهَادٌ وَمِنْ فَوْقِهِمْ غَوَاشٍ ۚ وَكَذَٰلِكَ نَجْزِي الظَّالِمِينَ ﴿41﴾ وَالَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ لَا نُكَلِّفُ نَفْسًا إِلَّا وُسْعَهَا أُولَٰئِكَ أَصْحَابُ الْجَنَّةِ ۖ هُمْ فِيهَا خَالِدُونَ ﴿42﴾ وَنَزَعْنَا مَا فِي صُدُورِهِمْ مِنْ غِلٍّ تَجْرِي مِنْ تَحْتِهِمُ الْأَنْهَارُ ۖ وَقَالُوا الْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ الَّذِي هَدَانَا لِهَٰذَا وَمَا كُنَّا لِنَهْتَدِيَ لَوْلَا أَنْ هَدَانَا اللَّهُ ۖ لَقَدْ جَاءَتْ رُسُلُ رَبِّنَا بِالْحَقِّ ۖ وَنُودُوا أَنْ تِلْكُمُ الْجَنَّةُ أُورِثْتُمُوهَا بِمَا كُنْتُمْ تَعْمَلُونَ ﴿43﴾ وَنَادَىٰ أَصْحَابُ الْجَنَّةِ أَصْحَابَ النَّارِ أَنْ قَدْ وَجَدْنَا مَا وَعَدَنَا رَبُّنَا حَقًّا فَهَلْ وَجَدْتُمْ مَا وَعَدَ رَبُّكُمْ حَقًّا ۖ قَالُوا نَعَمْ ۚ فَأَذَّنَ مُؤَذِّنٌ بَيْنَهُمْ أَنْ لَعْنَةُ اللَّهِ عَلَى الظَّالِمِينَ ﴿44﴾ الَّذِينَ يَصُدُّونَ عَنْ سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ وَيَبْغُونَهَا عِوَجًا وَهُمْ بِالْآخِرَةِ كَافِرُونَ ﴿45﴾ وَبَيْنَهُمَا حِجَابٌ ۚ وَعَلَى الْأَعْرَافِ رِجَالٌ يَعْرِفُونَ كُلًّا بِسِيمَاهُمْ ۚ وَنَادَوْا أَصْحَابَ الْجَنَّةِ أَنْ سَلَامٌ عَلَيْكُمْ ۚ لَمْ يَدْخُلُوهَا وَهُمْ يَطْمَعُونَ ﴿46﴾ وَإِذَا صُرِفَتْ أَبْصَارُهُمْ تِلْقَاءَ أَصْحَابِ النَّارِ قَالُوا رَبَّنَا لَا تَجْعَلْنَا مَعَ الْقَوْمِ الظَّالِمِينَ ﴿47﴾ وَنَادَىٰ أَصْحَابُ الْأَعْرَافِ رِجَالًا يَعْرِفُونَهُمْ بِسِيمَاهُمْ قَالُوا مَا أَغْنَىٰ عَنْكُمْ جَمْعُكُمْ وَمَا كُنْتُمْ تَسْتَكْبِرُونَ ﴿48﴾ أَهَٰؤُلَاءِ الَّذِينَ أَقْسَمْتُمْ لَا يَنَالُهُمُ اللَّهُ بِرَحْمَةٍ ۚ ادْخُلُوا الْجَنَّةَ لَا خَوْفٌ عَلَيْكُمْ وَلَا أَنْتُمْ تَحْزَنُونَ ﴿49﴾ وَنَادَىٰ أَصْحَابُ النَّارِ أَصْحَابَ الْجَنَّةِ أَنْ أَفِيضُوا عَلَيْنَا مِنَ الْمَاءِ أَوْ مِمَّا رَزَقَكُمُ اللَّهُ ۚ قَالُوا إِنَّ اللَّهَ حَرَّمَهُمَا عَلَى الْكَافِرِينَ ﴿50﴾ الَّذِينَ اتَّخَذُوا دِينَهُمْ لَهْوًا وَلَعِبًا وَغَرَّتْهُمُ الْحَيَاةُ الدُّنْيَا ۚ فَالْيَوْمَ نَنْسَاهُمْ كَمَا نَسُوا لِقَاءَ يَوْمِهِمْ هَٰذَا وَمَا كَانُوا بِآيَاتِنَا يَجْحَدُونَ ﴿51﴾ وَلَقَدْ جِئْنَاهُمْ بِكِتَابٍ فَصَّلْنَاهُ عَلَىٰ عِلْمٍ هُدًى وَرَحْمَةً لِقَوْمٍ يُؤْمِنُونَ ﴿52﴾ هَلْ يَنْظُرُونَ إِلَّا تَأْوِيلَهُ ۚ يَوْمَ يَأْتِي تَأْوِيلُهُ يَقُولُ الَّذِينَ نَسُوهُ مِنْ قَبْلُ قَدْ جَاءَتْ رُسُلُ رَبِّنَا بِالْحَقِّ فَهَلْ لَنَا مِنْ شُفَعَاءَ فَيَشْفَعُوا لَنَا أَوْ نُرَدُّ فَنَعْمَلَ غَيْرَ الَّذِي كُنَّا نَعْمَلُ ۚ قَدْ خَسِرُوا أَنْفُسَهُمْ وَضَلَّ عَنْهُمْ مَا كَانُوا يَفْتَرُونَ ﴿53﴾ إِنَّ رَبَّكُمُ اللَّهُ الَّذِي خَلَقَ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضَ فِي سِتَّةِ أَيَّامٍ ثُمَّ اسْتَوَىٰ عَلَى الْعَرْشِ يُغْشِي اللَّيْلَ النَّهَارَ يَطْلُبُهُ حَثِيثًا وَالشَّمْسَ وَالْقَمَرَ وَالنُّجُومَ مُسَخَّرَاتٍ بِأَمْرِهِ ۗ أَلَا لَهُ الْخَلْقُ وَالْأَمْرُ ۗ تَبَارَكَ اللَّهُ رَبُّ الْعَالَمِينَ ﴿54﴾ ادْعُوا رَبَّكُمْ تَضَرُّعًا وَخُفْيَةً ۚ إِنَّهُ لَا يُحِبُّ الْمُعْتَدِينَ ﴿55﴾ وَلَا تُفْسِدُوا فِي الْأَرْضِ بَعْدَ إِصْلَاحِهَا وَادْعُوهُ خَوْفًا وَطَمَعًا ۚ إِنَّ رَحْمَتَ اللَّهِ قَرِيبٌ مِنَ الْمُحْسِنِينَ ﴿56﴾ وَهُوَ الَّذِي يُرْسِلُ الرِّيَاحَ بُشْرًا بَيْنَ يَدَيْ رَحْمَتِهِ ۖ حَتَّىٰ إِذَا أَقَلَّتْ سَحَابًا ثِقَالًا سُقْنَاهُ لِبَلَدٍ مَيِّتٍ فَأَنْزَلْنَا بِهِ الْمَاءَ فَأَخْرَجْنَا بِهِ مِنْ كُلِّ الثَّمَرَاتِ ۚ كَذَٰلِكَ نُخْرِجُ الْمَوْتَىٰ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَذَكَّرُونَ ﴿57﴾ وَالْبَلَدُ الطَّيِّبُ يَخْرُجُ نَبَاتُهُ بِإِذْنِ رَبِّهِ ۖ وَالَّذِي خَبُثَ لَا يَخْرُجُ إِلَّا نَكِدًا ۚ كَذَٰلِكَ نُصَرِّفُ الْآيَاتِ لِقَوْمٍ يَشْكُرُونَ ﴿58﴾ لَقَدْ أَرْسَلْنَا نُوحًا إِلَىٰ قَوْمِهِ فَقَالَ يَا قَوْمِ اعْبُدُوا اللَّهَ مَا لَكُمْ مِنْ إِلَٰهٍ غَيْرُهُ إِنِّي أَخَافُ عَلَيْكُمْ عَذَابَ يَوْمٍ عَظِيمٍ ﴿59﴾ قَالَ الْمَلَأُ مِنْ قَوْمِهِ إِنَّا لَنَرَاكَ فِي ضَلَالٍ مُبِينٍ ﴿60﴾ قَالَ يَا قَوْمِ لَيْسَ بِي ضَلَالَةٌ وَلَٰكِنِّي رَسُولٌ مِنْ رَبِّ الْعَالَمِينَ ﴿61﴾ أُبَلِّغُكُمْ رِسَالَاتِ رَبِّي وَأَنْصَحُ لَكُمْ وَأَعْلَمُ مِنَ اللَّهِ مَا لَا تَعْلَمُونَ ﴿62﴾ أَوَعَجِبْتُمْ أَنْ جَاءَكُمْ ذِكْرٌ مِنْ رَبِّكُمْ عَلَىٰ رَجُلٍ مِنْكُمْ لِيُنْذِرَكُمْ وَلِتَتَّقُوا وَلَعَلَّكُمْ تُرْحَمُونَ ﴿63﴾ فَكَذَّبُوهُ فَأَنْجَيْنَاهُ وَالَّذِينَ مَعَهُ فِي الْفُلْكِ وَأَغْرَقْنَا الَّذِينَ كَذَّبُوا بِآيَاتِنَا ۚ إِنَّهُمْ كَانُوا قَوْمًا عَمِينَ ﴿64﴾ وَإِلَىٰ عَادٍ أَخَاهُمْ هُودًا ۗ قَالَ يَا قَوْمِ اعْبُدُوا اللَّهَ مَا لَكُمْ مِنْ إِلَٰهٍ غَيْرُهُ ۚ أَفَلَا تَتَّقُونَ ﴿65﴾ قَالَ الْمَلَأُ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا مِنْ قَوْمِهِ إِنَّا لَنَرَاكَ فِي سَفَاهَةٍ وَإِنَّا لَنَظُنُّكَ مِنَ الْكَاذِبِينَ ﴿66﴾ قَالَ يَا قَوْمِ لَيْسَ بِي سَفَاهَةٌ وَلَٰكِنِّي رَسُولٌ مِنْ رَبِّ الْعَالَمِينَ ﴿67﴾ أُبَلِّغُكُمْ رِسَالَاتِ رَبِّي وَأَنَا لَكُمْ نَاصِحٌ أَمِينٌ ﴿68﴾ أَوَعَجِبْتُمْ أَنْ جَاءَكُمْ ذِكْرٌ مِنْ رَبِّكُمْ عَلَىٰ رَجُلٍ مِنْكُمْ لِيُنْذِرَكُمْ ۚ وَاذْكُرُوا إِذْ جَعَلَكُمْ خُلَفَاءَ مِنْ بَعْدِ قَوْمِ نُوحٍ وَزَادَكُمْ فِي الْخَلْقِ بَسْطَةً ۖ فَاذْكُرُوا آلَاءَ اللَّهِ لَعَلَّكُمْ تُفْلِحُونَ ﴿69﴾ قَالُوا أَجِئْتَنَا لِنَعْبُدَ اللَّهَ وَحْدَهُ وَنَذَرَ مَا كَانَ يَعْبُدُ آبَاؤُنَا ۖ فَأْتِنَا بِمَا تَعِدُنَا إِنْ كُنْتَ مِنَ الصَّادِقِينَ ﴿70﴾ قَالَ قَدْ وَقَعَ عَلَيْكُمْ مِنْ رَبِّكُمْ رِجْسٌ وَغَضَبٌ ۖ أَتُجَادِلُونَنِي فِي أَسْمَاءٍ سَمَّيْتُمُوهَا أَنْتُمْ وَآبَاؤُكُمْ مَا نَزَّلَ اللَّهُ بِهَا مِنْ سُلْطَانٍ ۚ فَانْتَظِرُوا إِنِّي مَعَكُمْ مِنَ الْمُنْتَظِرِينَ ﴿71﴾ فَأَنْجَيْنَاهُ وَالَّذِينَ مَعَهُ بِرَحْمَةٍ مِنَّا وَقَطَعْنَا دَابِرَ الَّذِينَ كَذَّبُوا بِآيَاتِنَا ۖ وَمَا كَانُوا مُؤْمِنِينَ ﴿72﴾ وَإِلَىٰ ثَمُودَ أَخَاهُمْ صَالِحًا ۗ قَالَ يَا قَوْمِ اعْبُدُوا اللَّهَ مَا لَكُمْ مِنْ إِلَٰهٍ غَيْرُهُ ۖ قَدْ جَاءَتْكُمْ بَيِّنَةٌ مِنْ رَبِّكُمْ ۖ هَٰذِهِ نَاقَةُ اللَّهِ لَكُمْ آيَةً ۖ فَذَرُوهَا تَأْكُلْ فِي أَرْضِ اللَّهِ ۖ وَلَا تَمَسُّوهَا بِسُوءٍ فَيَأْخُذَكُمْ عَذَابٌ أَلِيمٌ ﴿73﴾ وَاذْكُرُوا إِذْ جَعَلَكُمْ خُلَفَاءَ مِنْ بَعْدِ عَادٍ وَبَوَّأَكُمْ فِي الْأَرْضِ تَتَّخِذُونَ مِنْ سُهُولِهَا قُصُورًا وَتَنْحِتُونَ الْجِبَالَ بُيُوتًا ۖ فَاذْكُرُوا آلَاءَ اللَّهِ وَلَا تَعْثَوْا فِي الْأَرْضِ مُفْسِدِينَ ﴿74﴾ قَالَ الْمَلَأُ الَّذِينَ اسْتَكْبَرُوا مِنْ قَوْمِهِ لِلَّذِينَ اسْتُضْعِفُوا لِمَنْ آمَنَ مِنْهُمْ أَتَعْلَمُونَ أَنَّ صَالِحًا مُرْسَلٌ مِنْ رَبِّهِ ۚ قَالُوا إِنَّا بِمَا أُرْسِلَ بِهِ مُؤْمِنُونَ ﴿75﴾ قَالَ الَّذِينَ اسْتَكْبَرُوا إِنَّا بِالَّذِي آمَنْتُمْ بِهِ كَافِرُونَ ﴿76﴾ فَعَقَرُوا النَّاقَةَ وَعَتَوْا عَنْ أَمْرِ رَبِّهِمْ وَقَالُوا يَا صَالِحُ ائْتِنَا بِمَا تَعِدُنَا إِنْ كُنْتَ مِنَ الْمُرْسَلِينَ ﴿77﴾ فَأَخَذَتْهُمُ الرَّجْفَةُ فَأَصْبَحُوا فِي دَارِهِمْ جَاثِمِينَ ﴿78﴾ فَتَوَلَّىٰ عَنْهُمْ وَقَالَ يَا قَوْمِ لَقَدْ أَبْلَغْتُكُمْ رِسَالَةَ رَبِّي وَنَصَحْتُ لَكُمْ وَلَٰكِنْ لَا تُحِبُّونَ النَّاصِحِينَ ﴿79﴾ وَلُوطًا إِذْ قَالَ لِقَوْمِهِ أَتَأْتُونَ الْفَاحِشَةَ مَا سَبَقَكُمْ بِهَا مِنْ أَحَدٍ مِنَ الْعَالَمِينَ ﴿80﴾ إِنَّكُمْ لَتَأْتُونَ الرِّجَالَ شَهْوَةً مِنْ دُونِ النِّسَاءِ ۚ بَلْ أَنْتُمْ قَوْمٌ مُسْرِفُونَ ﴿81﴾ وَمَا كَانَ جَوَابَ قَوْمِهِ إِلَّا أَنْ قَالُوا أَخْرِجُوهُمْ مِنْ قَرْيَتِكُمْ ۖ إِنَّهُمْ أُنَاسٌ يَتَطَهَّرُونَ ﴿82﴾ فَأَنْجَيْنَاهُ وَأَهْلَهُ إِلَّا امْرَأَتَهُ كَانَتْ مِنَ الْغَابِرِينَ ﴿83﴾ وَأَمْطَرْنَا عَلَيْهِمْ مَطَرًا ۖ فَانْظُرْ كَيْفَ كَانَ عَاقِبَةُ الْمُجْرِمِينَ ﴿84﴾ وَإِلَىٰ مَدْيَنَ أَخَاهُمْ شُعَيْبًا ۗ قَالَ يَا قَوْمِ اعْبُدُوا اللَّهَ مَا لَكُمْ مِنْ إِلَٰهٍ غَيْرُهُ ۖ قَدْ جَاءَتْكُمْ بَيِّنَةٌ مِنْ رَبِّكُمْ ۖ فَأَوْفُوا الْكَيْلَ وَالْمِيزَانَ وَلَا تَبْخَسُوا النَّاسَ أَشْيَاءَهُمْ وَلَا تُفْسِدُوا فِي الْأَرْضِ بَعْدَ إِصْلَاحِهَا ۚ ذَٰلِكُمْ خَيْرٌ لَكُمْ إِنْ كُنْتُمْ مُؤْمِنِينَ ﴿85﴾ وَلَا تَقْعُدُوا بِكُلِّ صِرَاطٍ تُوعِدُونَ وَتَصُدُّونَ عَنْ سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ مَنْ آمَنَ بِهِ وَتَبْغُونَهَا عِوَجًا ۚ وَاذْكُرُوا إِذْ كُنْتُمْ قَلِيلًا فَكَثَّرَكُمْ ۖ وَانْظُرُوا كَيْفَ كَانَ عَاقِبَةُ الْمُفْسِدِينَ ﴿86﴾ وَإِنْ كَانَ طَائِفَةٌ مِنْكُمْ آمَنُوا بِالَّذِي أُرْسِلْتُ بِهِ وَطَائِفَةٌ لَمْ يُؤْمِنُوا فَاصْبِرُوا حَتَّىٰ يَحْكُمَ اللَّهُ بَيْنَنَا ۚ وَهُوَ خَيْرُ الْحَاكِمِينَ ﴿87﴾
الجزء ﴿ 9 ﴾
قَالَ الْمَلَأُ الَّذِينَ اسْتَكْبَرُوا مِنْ قَوْمِهِ لَنُخْرِجَنَّكَ يَا شُعَيْبُ وَالَّذِينَ آمَنُوا مَعَكَ مِنْ قَرْيَتِنَا أَوْ لَتَعُودُنَّ فِي مِلَّتِنَا ۚ قَالَ أَوَلَوْ كُنَّا كَارِهِينَ ﴿88﴾ قَدِ افْتَرَيْنَا عَلَى اللَّهِ كَذِبًا إِنْ عُدْنَا فِي مِلَّتِكُمْ بَعْدَ إِذْ نَجَّانَا اللَّهُ مِنْهَا ۚ وَمَا يَكُونُ لَنَا أَنْ نَعُودَ فِيهَا إِلَّا أَنْ يَشَاءَ اللَّهُ رَبُّنَا ۚ وَسِعَ رَبُّنَا كُلَّ شَيْءٍ عِلْمًا ۚ عَلَى اللَّهِ تَوَكَّلْنَا ۚ رَبَّنَا افْتَحْ بَيْنَنَا وَبَيْنَ قَوْمِنَا بِالْحَقِّ وَأَنْتَ خَيْرُ الْفَاتِحِينَ ﴿89﴾ وَقَالَ الْمَلَأُ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا مِنْ قَوْمِهِ لَئِنِ اتَّبَعْتُمْ شُعَيْبًا إِنَّكُمْ إِذًا لَخَاسِرُونَ ﴿90﴾ فَأَخَذَتْهُمُ الرَّجْفَةُ فَأَصْبَحُوا فِي دَارِهِمْ جَاثِمِينَ ﴿91﴾ الَّذِينَ كَذَّبُوا شُعَيْبًا كَأَنْ لَمْ يَغْنَوْا فِيهَا ۚ الَّذِينَ كَذَّبُوا شُعَيْبًا كَانُوا هُمُ الْخَاسِرِينَ ﴿92﴾ فَتَوَلَّىٰ عَنْهُمْ وَقَالَ يَا قَوْمِ لَقَدْ أَبْلَغْتُكُمْ رِسَالَاتِ رَبِّي وَنَصَحْتُ لَكُمْ ۖ فَكَيْفَ آسَىٰ عَلَىٰ قَوْمٍ كَافِرِينَ ﴿93﴾ وَمَا أَرْسَلْنَا فِي قَرْيَةٍ مِنْ نَبِيٍّ إِلَّا أَخَذْنَا أَهْلَهَا بِالْبَأْسَاءِ وَالضَّرَّاءِ لَعَلَّهُمْ يَضَّرَّعُونَ ﴿94﴾ ثُمَّ بَدَّلْنَا مَكَانَ السَّيِّئَةِ الْحَسَنَةَ حَتَّىٰ عَفَوْا وَقَالُوا قَدْ مَسَّ آبَاءَنَا الضَّرَّاءُ وَالسَّرَّاءُ فَأَخَذْنَاهُمْ بَغْتَةً وَهُمْ لَا يَشْعُرُونَ ﴿95﴾ وَلَوْ أَنَّ أَهْلَ الْقُرَىٰ آمَنُوا وَاتَّقَوْا لَفَتَحْنَا عَلَيْهِمْ بَرَكَاتٍ مِنَ السَّمَاءِ وَالْأَرْضِ وَلَٰكِنْ كَذَّبُوا فَأَخَذْنَاهُمْ بِمَا كَانُوا يَكْسِبُونَ ﴿96﴾ أَفَأَمِنَ أَهْلُ الْقُرَىٰ أَنْ يَأْتِيَهُمْ بَأْسُنَا بَيَاتًا وَهُمْ نَائِمُونَ ﴿97﴾ أَوَأَمِنَ أَهْلُ الْقُرَىٰ أَنْ يَأْتِيَهُمْ بَأْسُنَا ضُحًى وَهُمْ يَلْعَبُونَ ﴿98﴾ أَفَأَمِنُوا مَكْرَ اللَّهِ ۚ فَلَا يَأْمَنُ مَكْرَ اللَّهِ إِلَّا الْقَوْمُ الْخَاسِرُونَ ﴿99﴾ أَوَلَمْ يَهْدِ لِلَّذِينَ يَرِثُونَ الْأَرْضَ مِنْ بَعْدِ أَهْلِهَا أَنْ لَوْ نَشَاءُ أَصَبْنَاهُمْ بِذُنُوبِهِمْ ۚ وَنَطْبَعُ عَلَىٰ قُلُوبِهِمْ فَهُمْ لَا يَسْمَعُونَ ﴿100﴾ تِلْكَ الْقُرَىٰ نَقُصُّ عَلَيْكَ مِنْ أَنْبَائِهَا ۚ وَلَقَدْ جَاءَتْهُمْ رُسُلُهُمْ بِالْبَيِّنَاتِ فَمَا كَانُوا لِيُؤْمِنُوا بِمَا كَذَّبُوا مِنْ قَبْلُ ۚ كَذَٰلِكَ يَطْبَعُ اللَّهُ عَلَىٰ قُلُوبِ الْكَافِرِينَ ﴿101﴾ وَمَا وَجَدْنَا لِأَكْثَرِهِمْ مِنْ عَهْدٍ ۖ وَإِنْ وَجَدْنَا أَكْثَرَهُمْ لَفَاسِقِينَ ﴿102﴾ ثُمَّ بَعَثْنَا مِنْ بَعْدِهِمْ مُوسَىٰ بِآيَاتِنَا إِلَىٰ فِرْعَوْنَ وَمَلَئِهِ فَظَلَمُوا بِهَا ۖ فَانْظُرْ كَيْفَ كَانَ عَاقِبَةُ الْمُفْسِدِينَ ﴿103﴾ وَقَالَ مُوسَىٰ يَا فِرْعَوْنُ إِنِّي رَسُولٌ مِنْ رَبِّ الْعَالَمِينَ ﴿104﴾ حَقِيقٌ عَلَىٰ أَنْ لَا أَقُولَ عَلَى اللَّهِ إِلَّا الْحَقَّ ۚ قَدْ جِئْتُكُمْ بِبَيِّنَةٍ مِنْ رَبِّكُمْ فَأَرْسِلْ مَعِيَ بَنِي إِسْرَائِيلَ ﴿105﴾ قَالَ إِنْ كُنْتَ جِئْتَ بِآيَةٍ فَأْتِ بِهَا إِنْ كُنْتَ مِنَ الصَّادِقِينَ ﴿106﴾ فَأَلْقَىٰ عَصَاهُ فَإِذَا هِيَ ثُعْبَانٌ مُبِينٌ ﴿107﴾ وَنَزَعَ يَدَهُ فَإِذَا هِيَ بَيْضَاءُ لِلنَّاظِرِينَ ﴿108﴾ قَالَ الْمَلَأُ مِنْ قَوْمِ فِرْعَوْنَ إِنَّ هَٰذَا لَسَاحِرٌ عَلِيمٌ ﴿109﴾ يُرِيدُ أَنْ يُخْرِجَكُمْ مِنْ أَرْضِكُمْ ۖ فَمَاذَا تَأْمُرُونَ ﴿110﴾ قَالُوا أَرْجِهْ وَأَخَاهُ وَأَرْسِلْ فِي الْمَدَائِنِ حَاشِرِينَ ﴿111﴾ يَأْتُوكَ بِكُلِّ سَاحِرٍ عَلِيمٍ ﴿112﴾ وَجَاءَ السَّحَرَةُ فِرْعَوْنَ قَالُوا إِنَّ لَنَا لَأَجْرًا إِنْ كُنَّا نَحْنُ الْغَالِبِينَ ﴿113﴾ قَالَ نَعَمْ وَإِنَّكُمْ لَمِنَ الْمُقَرَّبِينَ ﴿114﴾ قَالُوا يَا مُوسَىٰ إِمَّا أَنْ تُلْقِيَ وَإِمَّا أَنْ نَكُونَ نَحْنُ الْمُلْقِينَ ﴿115﴾ قَالَ أَلْقُوا ۖ فَلَمَّا أَلْقَوْا سَحَرُوا أَعْيُنَ النَّاسِ وَاسْتَرْهَبُوهُمْ وَجَاءُوا بِسِحْرٍ عَظِيمٍ ﴿116﴾ وَأَوْحَيْنَا إِلَىٰ مُوسَىٰ أَنْ أَلْقِ عَصَاكَ ۖ فَإِذَا هِيَ تَلْقَفُ مَا يَأْفِكُونَ ﴿117﴾ فَوَقَعَ الْحَقُّ وَبَطَلَ مَا كَانُوا يَعْمَلُونَ ﴿118﴾ فَغُلِبُوا هُنَالِكَ وَانْقَلَبُوا صَاغِرِينَ ﴿119﴾ وَأُلْقِيَ السَّحَرَةُ سَاجِدِينَ ﴿120﴾ قَالُوا آمَنَّا بِرَبِّ الْعَالَمِينَ ﴿121﴾ رَبِّ مُوسَىٰ وَهَارُونَ ﴿122﴾ قَالَ فِرْعَوْنُ آمَنْتُمْ بِهِ قَبْلَ أَنْ آذَنَ لَكُمْ ۖ إِنَّ هَٰذَا لَمَكْرٌ مَكَرْتُمُوهُ فِي الْمَدِينَةِ لِتُخْرِجُوا مِنْهَا أَهْلَهَا ۖ فَسَوْفَ تَعْلَمُونَ ﴿123﴾ لَأُقَطِّعَنَّ أَيْدِيَكُمْ وَأَرْجُلَكُمْ مِنْ خِلَافٍ ثُمَّ لَأُصَلِّبَنَّكُمْ أَجْمَعِينَ ﴿124﴾ قَالُوا إِنَّا إِلَىٰ رَبِّنَا مُنْقَلِبُونَ ﴿125﴾ وَمَا تَنْقِمُ مِنَّا إِلَّا أَنْ آمَنَّا بِآيَاتِ رَبِّنَا لَمَّا جَاءَتْنَا ۚ رَبَّنَا أَفْرِغْ عَلَيْنَا صَبْرًا وَتَوَفَّنَا مُسْلِمِينَ ﴿126﴾ وَقَالَ الْمَلَأُ مِنْ قَوْمِ فِرْعَوْنَ أَتَذَرُ مُوسَىٰ وَقَوْمَهُ لِيُفْسِدُوا فِي الْأَرْضِ وَيَذَرَكَ وَآلِهَتَكَ ۚ قَالَ سَنُقَتِّلُ أَبْنَاءَهُمْ وَنَسْتَحْيِي نِسَاءَهُمْ وَإِنَّا فَوْقَهُمْ قَاهِرُونَ ﴿127﴾ قَالَ مُوسَىٰ لِقَوْمِهِ اسْتَعِينُوا بِاللَّهِ وَاصْبِرُوا ۖ إِنَّ الْأَرْضَ لِلَّهِ يُورِثُهَا مَنْ يَشَاءُ مِنْ عِبَادِهِ ۖ وَالْعَاقِبَةُ لِلْمُتَّقِينَ ﴿128﴾ قَالُوا أُوذِينَا مِنْ قَبْلِ أَنْ تَأْتِيَنَا وَمِنْ بَعْدِ مَا جِئْتَنَا ۚ قَالَ عَسَىٰ رَبُّكُمْ أَنْ يُهْلِكَ عَدُوَّكُمْ وَيَسْتَخْلِفَكُمْ فِي الْأَرْضِ فَيَنْظُرَ كَيْفَ تَعْمَلُونَ ﴿129﴾ وَلَقَدْ أَخَذْنَا آلَ فِرْعَوْنَ بِالسِّنِينَ وَنَقْصٍ مِنَ الثَّمَرَاتِ لَعَلَّهُمْ يَذَّكَّرُونَ ﴿130﴾ فَإِذَا جَاءَتْهُمُ الْحَسَنَةُ قَالُوا لَنَا هَٰذِهِ ۖ وَإِنْ تُصِبْهُمْ سَيِّئَةٌ يَطَّيَّرُوا بِمُوسَىٰ وَمَنْ مَعَهُ ۗ أَلَا إِنَّمَا طَائِرُهُمْ عِنْدَ اللَّهِ وَلَٰكِنَّ أَكْثَرَهُمْ لَا يَعْلَمُونَ ﴿131﴾ وَقَالُوا مَهْمَا تَأْتِنَا بِهِ مِنْ آيَةٍ لِتَسْحَرَنَا بِهَا فَمَا نَحْنُ لَكَ بِمُؤْمِنِينَ ﴿132﴾ فَأَرْسَلْنَا عَلَيْهِمُ الطُّوفَانَ وَالْجَرَادَ وَالْقُمَّلَ وَالضَّفَادِعَ وَالدَّمَ آيَاتٍ مُفَصَّلَاتٍ فَاسْتَكْبَرُوا وَكَانُوا قَوْمًا مُجْرِمِينَ ﴿133﴾ وَلَمَّا وَقَعَ عَلَيْهِمُ الرِّجْزُ قَالُوا يَا مُوسَى ادْعُ لَنَا رَبَّكَ بِمَا عَهِدَ عِنْدَكَ ۖ لَئِنْ كَشَفْتَ عَنَّا الرِّجْزَ لَنُؤْمِنَنَّ لَكَ وَلَنُرْسِلَنَّ مَعَكَ بَنِي إِسْرَائِيلَ ﴿134﴾ فَلَمَّا كَشَفْنَا عَنْهُمُ الرِّجْزَ إِلَىٰ أَجَلٍ هُمْ بَالِغُوهُ إِذَا هُمْ يَنْكُثُونَ ﴿135﴾ فَانْتَقَمْنَا مِنْهُمْ فَأَغْرَقْنَاهُمْ فِي الْيَمِّ بِأَنَّهُمْ كَذَّبُوا بِآيَاتِنَا وَكَانُوا عَنْهَا غَافِلِينَ ﴿136﴾ وَأَوْرَثْنَا الْقَوْمَ الَّذِينَ كَانُوا يُسْتَضْعَفُونَ مَشَارِقَ الْأَرْضِ وَمَغَارِبَهَا الَّتِي بَارَكْنَا فِيهَا ۖ وَتَمَّتْ كَلِمَتُ رَبِّكَ الْحُسْنَىٰ عَلَىٰ بَنِي إِسْرَائِيلَ بِمَا صَبَرُوا ۖ وَدَمَّرْنَا مَا كَانَ يَصْنَعُ فِرْعَوْنُ وَقَوْمُهُ وَمَا كَانُوا يَعْرِشُونَ ﴿137﴾ وَجَاوَزْنَا بِبَنِي إِسْرَائِيلَ الْبَحْرَ فَأَتَوْا عَلَىٰ قَوْمٍ يَعْكُفُونَ عَلَىٰ أَصْنَامٍ لَهُمْ ۚ قَالُوا يَا مُوسَى اجْعَلْ لَنَا إِلَٰهًا كَمَا لَهُمْ آلِهَةٌ ۚ قَالَ إِنَّكُمْ قَوْمٌ تَجْهَلُونَ ﴿138﴾ إِنَّ هَٰؤُلَاءِ مُتَبَّرٌ مَا هُمْ فِيهِ وَبَاطِلٌ مَا كَانُوا يَعْمَلُونَ ﴿139﴾ قَالَ أَغَيْرَ اللَّهِ أَبْغِيكُمْ إِلَٰهًا وَهُوَ فَضَّلَكُمْ عَلَى الْعَالَمِينَ ﴿140﴾ وَإِذْ أَنْجَيْنَاكُمْ مِنْ آلِ فِرْعَوْنَ يَسُومُونَكُمْ سُوءَ الْعَذَابِ ۖ يُقَتِّلُونَ أَبْنَاءَكُمْ وَيَسْتَحْيُونَ نِسَاءَكُمْ ۚ وَفِي ذَٰلِكُمْ بَلَاءٌ مِنْ رَبِّكُمْ عَظِيمٌ ﴿141﴾ وَوَاعَدْنَا مُوسَىٰ ثَلَاثِينَ لَيْلَةً وَأَتْمَمْنَاهَا بِعَشْرٍ فَتَمَّ مِيقَاتُ رَبِّهِ أَرْبَعِينَ لَيْلَةً ۚ وَقَالَ مُوسَىٰ لِأَخِيهِ هَارُونَ اخْلُفْنِي فِي قَوْمِي وَأَصْلِحْ وَلَا تَتَّبِعْ سَبِيلَ الْمُفْسِدِينَ ﴿142﴾ وَلَمَّا جَاءَ مُوسَىٰ لِمِيقَاتِنَا وَكَلَّمَهُ رَبُّهُ قَالَ رَبِّ أَرِنِي أَنْظُرْ إِلَيْكَ ۚ قَالَ لَنْ تَرَانِي وَلَٰكِنِ انْظُرْ إِلَى الْجَبَلِ فَإِنِ اسْتَقَرَّ مَكَانَهُ فَسَوْفَ تَرَانِي ۚ فَلَمَّا تَجَلَّىٰ رَبُّهُ لِلْجَبَلِ جَعَلَهُ دَكًّا وَخَرَّ مُوسَىٰ صَعِقًا ۚ فَلَمَّا أَفَاقَ قَالَ سُبْحَانَكَ تُبْتُ إِلَيْكَ وَأَنَا أَوَّلُ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ ﴿143﴾ قَالَ يَا مُوسَىٰ إِنِّي اصْطَفَيْتُكَ عَلَى النَّاسِ بِرِسَالَاتِي وَبِكَلَامِي فَخُذْ مَا آتَيْتُكَ وَكُنْ مِنَ الشَّاكِرِينَ ﴿144﴾ وَكَتَبْنَا لَهُ فِي الْأَلْوَاحِ مِنْ كُلِّ شَيْءٍ مَوْعِظَةً وَتَفْصِيلًا لِكُلِّ شَيْءٍ فَخُذْهَا بِقُوَّةٍ وَأْمُرْ قَوْمَكَ يَأْخُذُوا بِأَحْسَنِهَا ۚ سَأُرِيكُمْ دَارَ الْفَاسِقِينَ ﴿145﴾ سَأَصْرِفُ عَنْ آيَاتِيَ الَّذِينَ يَتَكَبَّرُونَ فِي الْأَرْضِ بِغَيْرِ الْحَقِّ وَإِنْ يَرَوْا كُلَّ آيَةٍ لَا يُؤْمِنُوا بِهَا وَإِنْ يَرَوْا سَبِيلَ الرُّشْدِ لَا يَتَّخِذُوهُ سَبِيلًا وَإِنْ يَرَوْا سَبِيلَ الْغَيِّ يَتَّخِذُوهُ سَبِيلًا ۚ ذَٰلِكَ بِأَنَّهُمْ كَذَّبُوا بِآيَاتِنَا وَكَانُوا عَنْهَا غَافِلِينَ ﴿146﴾ وَالَّذِينَ كَذَّبُوا بِآيَاتِنَا وَلِقَاءِ الْآخِرَةِ حَبِطَتْ أَعْمَالُهُمْ ۚ هَلْ يُجْزَوْنَ إِلَّا مَا كَانُوا يَعْمَلُونَ ﴿147﴾ وَاتَّخَذَ قَوْمُ مُوسَىٰ مِنْ بَعْدِهِ مِنْ حُلِيِّهِمْ عِجْلًا جَسَدًا لَهُ خُوَارٌ ۚ أَلَمْ يَرَوْا أَنَّهُ لَا يُكَلِّمُهُمْ وَلَا يَهْدِيهِمْ سَبِيلًا ۘ اتَّخَذُوهُ وَكَانُوا ظَالِمِينَ ﴿148﴾ وَلَمَّا سُقِطَ فِي أَيْدِيهِمْ وَرَأَوْا أَنَّهُمْ قَدْ ضَلُّوا قَالُوا لَئِنْ لَمْ يَرْحَمْنَا رَبُّنَا وَيَغْفِرْ لَنَا لَنَكُونَنَّ مِنَ الْخَاسِرِينَ ﴿149﴾ وَلَمَّا رَجَعَ مُوسَىٰ إِلَىٰ قَوْمِهِ غَضْبَانَ أَسِفًا قَالَ بِئْسَمَا خَلَفْتُمُونِي مِنْ بَعْدِي ۖ أَعَجِلْتُمْ أَمْرَ رَبِّكُمْ ۖ وَأَلْقَى الْأَلْوَاحَ وَأَخَذَ بِرَأْسِ أَخِيهِ يَجُرُّهُ إِلَيْهِ ۚ قَالَ ابْنَ أُمَّ إِنَّ الْقَوْمَ اسْتَضْعَفُونِي وَكَادُوا يَقْتُلُونَنِي فَلَا تُشْمِتْ بِيَ الْأَعْدَاءَ وَلَا تَجْعَلْنِي مَعَ الْقَوْمِ الظَّالِمِينَ ﴿150﴾ قَالَ رَبِّ اغْفِرْ لِي وَلِأَخِي وَأَدْخِلْنَا فِي رَحْمَتِكَ ۖ وَأَنْتَ أَرْحَمُ الرَّاحِمِينَ ﴿151﴾ إِنَّ الَّذِينَ اتَّخَذُوا الْعِجْلَ سَيَنَالُهُمْ غَضَبٌ مِنْ رَبِّهِمْ وَذِلَّةٌ فِي الْحَيَاةِ الدُّنْيَا ۚ وَكَذَٰلِكَ نَجْزِي الْمُفْتَرِينَ ﴿152﴾ وَالَّذِينَ عَمِلُوا السَّيِّئَاتِ ثُمَّ تَابُوا مِنْ بَعْدِهَا وَآمَنُوا إِنَّ رَبَّكَ مِنْ بَعْدِهَا لَغَفُورٌ رَحِيمٌ ﴿153﴾ وَلَمَّا سَكَتَ عَنْ مُوسَى الْغَضَبُ أَخَذَ الْأَلْوَاحَ ۖ وَفِي نُسْخَتِهَا هُدًى وَرَحْمَةٌ لِلَّذِينَ هُمْ لِرَبِّهِمْ يَرْهَبُونَ ﴿154﴾ وَاخْتَارَ مُوسَىٰ قَوْمَهُ سَبْعِينَ رَجُلًا لِمِيقَاتِنَا ۖ فَلَمَّا أَخَذَتْهُمُ الرَّجْفَةُ قَالَ رَبِّ لَوْ شِئْتَ أَهْلَكْتَهُمْ مِنْ قَبْلُ وَإِيَّايَ ۖ أَتُهْلِكُنَا بِمَا فَعَلَ السُّفَهَاءُ مِنَّا ۖ إِنْ هِيَ إِلَّا فِتْنَتُكَ تُضِلُّ بِهَا مَنْ تَشَاءُ وَتَهْدِي مَنْ تَشَاءُ ۖ أَنْتَ وَلِيُّنَا فَاغْفِرْ لَنَا وَارْحَمْنَا ۖ وَأَنْتَ خَيْرُ الْغَافِرِينَ ﴿155﴾ وَاكْتُبْ لَنَا فِي هَٰذِهِ الدُّنْيَا حَسَنَةً وَفِي الْآخِرَةِ إِنَّا هُدْنَا إِلَيْكَ ۚ قَالَ عَذَابِي أُصِيبُ بِهِ مَنْ أَشَاءُ ۖ وَرَحْمَتِي وَسِعَتْ كُلَّ شَيْءٍ ۚ فَسَأَكْتُبُهَا لِلَّذِينَ يَتَّقُونَ وَيُؤْتُونَ الزَّكَاةَ وَالَّذِينَ هُمْ بِآيَاتِنَا يُؤْمِنُونَ ﴿156﴾ الَّذِينَ يَتَّبِعُونَ الرَّسُولَ النَّبِيَّ الْأُمِّيَّ الَّذِي يَجِدُونَهُ مَكْتُوبًا عِنْدَهُمْ فِي التَّوْرَاةِ وَالْإِنْجِيلِ يَأْمُرُهُمْ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ وَيَنْهَاهُمْ عَنِ الْمُنْكَرِ وَيُحِلُّ لَهُمُ الطَّيِّبَاتِ وَيُحَرِّمُ عَلَيْهِمُ الْخَبَائِثَ وَيَضَعُ عَنْهُمْ إِصْرَهُمْ وَالْأَغْلَالَ الَّتِي كَانَتْ عَلَيْهِمْ ۚ فَالَّذِينَ آمَنُوا بِهِ وَعَزَّرُوهُ وَنَصَرُوهُ وَاتَّبَعُوا النُّورَ الَّذِي أُنْزِلَ مَعَهُ ۙ أُولَٰئِكَ هُمُ الْمُفْلِحُونَ ﴿157﴾ قُلْ يَا أَيُّهَا النَّاسُ إِنِّي رَسُولُ اللَّهِ إِلَيْكُمْ جَمِيعًا الَّذِي لَهُ مُلْكُ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضِ ۖ لَا إِلَٰهَ إِلَّا هُوَ يُحْيِي وَيُمِيتُ ۖ فَآمِنُوا بِاللَّهِ وَرَسُولِهِ النَّبِيِّ الْأُمِّيِّ الَّذِي يُؤْمِنُ بِاللَّهِ وَكَلِمَاتِهِ وَاتَّبِعُوهُ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَهْتَدُونَ ﴿158﴾ وَمِنْ قَوْمِ مُوسَىٰ أُمَّةٌ يَهْدُونَ بِالْحَقِّ وَبِهِ يَعْدِلُونَ ﴿159﴾ وَقَطَّعْنَاهُمُ اثْنَتَيْ عَشْرَةَ أَسْبَاطًا أُمَمًا ۚ وَأَوْحَيْنَا إِلَىٰ مُوسَىٰ إِذِ اسْتَسْقَاهُ قَوْمُهُ أَنِ اضْرِبْ بِعَصَاكَ الْحَجَرَ ۖ فَانْبَجَسَتْ مِنْهُ اثْنَتَا عَشْرَةَ عَيْنًا ۖ قَدْ عَلِمَ كُلُّ أُنَاسٍ مَشْرَبَهُمْ ۚ وَظَلَّلْنَا عَلَيْهِمُ الْغَمَامَ وَأَنْزَلْنَا عَلَيْهِمُ الْمَنَّ وَالسَّلْوَىٰ ۖ كُلُوا مِنْ طَيِّبَاتِ مَا رَزَقْنَاكُمْ ۚ وَمَا ظَلَمُونَا وَلَٰكِنْ كَانُوا أَنْفُسَهُمْ يَظْلِمُونَ ﴿160﴾ وَإِذْ قِيلَ لَهُمُ اسْكُنُوا هَٰذِهِ الْقَرْيَةَ وَكُلُوا مِنْهَا حَيْثُ شِئْتُمْ وَقُولُوا حِطَّةٌ وَادْخُلُوا الْبَابَ سُجَّدًا نَغْفِرْ لَكُمْ خَطِيئَاتِكُمْ ۚ سَنَزِيدُ الْمُحْسِنِينَ ﴿161﴾ فَبَدَّلَ الَّذِينَ ظَلَمُوا مِنْهُمْ قَوْلًا غَيْرَ الَّذِي قِيلَ لَهُمْ فَأَرْسَلْنَا عَلَيْهِمْ رِجْزًا مِنَ السَّمَاءِ بِمَا كَانُوا يَظْلِمُونَ ﴿162﴾ وَاسْأَلْهُمْ عَنِ الْقَرْيَةِ الَّتِي كَانَتْ حَاضِرَةَ الْبَحْرِ إِذْ يَعْدُونَ فِي السَّبْتِ إِذْ تَأْتِيهِمْ حِيتَانُهُمْ يَوْمَ سَبْتِهِمْ شُرَّعًا وَيَوْمَ لَا يَسْبِتُونَ ۙ لَا تَأْتِيهِمْ ۚ كَذَٰلِكَ نَبْلُوهُمْ بِمَا كَانُوا يَفْسُقُونَ ﴿163﴾ وَإِذْ قَالَتْ أُمَّةٌ مِنْهُمْ لِمَ تَعِظُونَ قَوْمًا ۙ اللَّهُ مُهْلِكُهُمْ أَوْ مُعَذِّبُهُمْ عَذَابًا شَدِيدًا ۖ قَالُوا مَعْذِرَةً إِلَىٰ رَبِّكُمْ وَلَعَلَّهُمْ يَتَّقُونَ ﴿164﴾ فَلَمَّا نَسُوا مَا ذُكِّرُوا بِهِ أَنْجَيْنَا الَّذِينَ يَنْهَوْنَ عَنِ السُّوءِ وَأَخَذْنَا الَّذِينَ ظَلَمُوا بِعَذَابٍ بَئِيسٍ بِمَا كَانُوا يَفْسُقُونَ ﴿165﴾ فَلَمَّا عَتَوْا عَنْ مَا نُهُوا عَنْهُ قُلْنَا لَهُمْ كُونُوا قِرَدَةً خَاسِئِينَ ﴿166﴾ وَإِذْ تَأَذَّنَ رَبُّكَ لَيَبْعَثَنَّ عَلَيْهِمْ إِلَىٰ يَوْمِ الْقِيَامَةِ مَنْ يَسُومُهُمْ سُوءَ الْعَذَابِ ۗ إِنَّ رَبَّكَ لَسَرِيعُ الْعِقَابِ ۖ وَإِنَّهُ لَغَفُورٌ رَحِيمٌ ﴿167﴾ وَقَطَّعْنَاهُمْ فِي الْأَرْضِ أُمَمًا ۖ مِنْهُمُ الصَّالِحُونَ وَمِنْهُمْ دُونَ ذَٰلِكَ ۖ وَبَلَوْنَاهُمْ بِالْحَسَنَاتِ وَالسَّيِّئَاتِ لَعَلَّهُمْ يَرْجِعُونَ ﴿168﴾ فَخَلَفَ مِنْ بَعْدِهِمْ خَلْفٌ وَرِثُوا الْكِتَابَ يَأْخُذُونَ عَرَضَ هَٰذَا الْأَدْنَىٰ وَيَقُولُونَ سَيُغْفَرُ لَنَا وَإِنْ يَأْتِهِمْ عَرَضٌ مِثْلُهُ يَأْخُذُوهُ ۚ أَلَمْ يُؤْخَذْ عَلَيْهِمْ مِيثَاقُ الْكِتَابِ أَنْ لَا يَقُولُوا عَلَى اللَّهِ إِلَّا الْحَقَّ وَدَرَسُوا مَا فِيهِ ۗ وَالدَّارُ الْآخِرَةُ خَيْرٌ لِلَّذِينَ يَتَّقُونَ ۗ أَفَلَا تَعْقِلُونَ ﴿169﴾ وَالَّذِينَ يُمَسِّكُونَ بِالْكِتَابِ وَأَقَامُوا الصَّلَاةَ إِنَّا لَا نُضِيعُ أَجْرَ الْمُصْلِحِينَ ﴿170﴾ وَإِذْ نَتَقْنَا الْجَبَلَ فَوْقَهُمْ كَأَنَّهُ ظُلَّةٌ وَظَنُّوا أَنَّهُ وَاقِعٌ بِهِمْ خُذُوا مَا آتَيْنَاكُمْ بِقُوَّةٍ وَاذْكُرُوا مَا فِيهِ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَتَّقُونَ ﴿171﴾ وَإِذْ أَخَذَ رَبُّكَ مِنْ بَنِي آدَمَ مِنْ ظُهُورِهِمْ ذُرِّيَّتَهُمْ وَأَشْهَدَهُمْ عَلَىٰ أَنْفُسِهِمْ أَلَسْتُ بِرَبِّكُمْ ۖ قَالُوا بَلَىٰ ۛ شَهِدْنَا ۛ أَنْ تَقُولُوا يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ إِنَّا كُنَّا عَنْ هَٰذَا غَافِلِينَ ﴿172﴾ أَوْ تَقُولُوا إِنَّمَا أَشْرَكَ آبَاؤُنَا مِنْ قَبْلُ وَكُنَّا ذُرِّيَّةً مِنْ بَعْدِهِمْ ۖ أَفَتُهْلِكُنَا بِمَا فَعَلَ الْمُبْطِلُونَ ﴿173﴾ وَكَذَٰلِكَ نُفَصِّلُ الْآيَاتِ وَلَعَلَّهُمْ يَرْجِعُونَ ﴿174﴾ وَاتْلُ عَلَيْهِمْ نَبَأَ الَّذِي آتَيْنَاهُ آيَاتِنَا فَانْسَلَخَ مِنْهَا فَأَتْبَعَهُ الشَّيْطَانُ فَكَانَ مِنَ الْغَاوِينَ ﴿175﴾ وَلَوْ شِئْنَا لَرَفَعْنَاهُ بِهَا وَلَٰكِنَّهُ أَخْلَدَ إِلَى الْأَرْضِ وَاتَّبَعَ هَوَاهُ ۚ فَمَثَلُهُ كَمَثَلِ الْكَلْبِ إِنْ تَحْمِلْ عَلَيْهِ يَلْهَثْ أَوْ تَتْرُكْهُ يَلْهَثْ ۚ ذَٰلِكَ مَثَلُ الْقَوْمِ الَّذِينَ كَذَّبُوا بِآيَاتِنَا ۚ فَاقْصُصِ الْقَصَصَ لَعَلَّهُمْ يَتَفَكَّرُونَ ﴿176﴾ سَاءَ مَثَلًا الْقَوْمُ الَّذِينَ كَذَّبُوا بِآيَاتِنَا وَأَنْفُسَهُمْ كَانُوا يَظْلِمُونَ ﴿177﴾ مَنْ يَهْدِ اللَّهُ فَهُوَ الْمُهْتَدِي ۖ وَمَنْ يُضْلِلْ فَأُولَٰئِكَ هُمُ الْخَاسِرُونَ ﴿178﴾ وَلَقَدْ ذَرَأْنَا لِجَهَنَّمَ كَثِيرًا مِنَ الْجِنِّ وَالْإِنْسِ ۖ لَهُمْ قُلُوبٌ لَا يَفْقَهُونَ بِهَا وَلَهُمْ أَعْيُنٌ لَا يُبْصِرُونَ بِهَا وَلَهُمْ آذَانٌ لَا يَسْمَعُونَ بِهَا ۚ أُولَٰئِكَ كَالْأَنْعَامِ بَلْ هُمْ أَضَلُّ ۚ أُولَٰئِكَ هُمُ الْغَافِلُونَ ﴿179﴾ وَلِلَّهِ الْأَسْمَاءُ الْحُسْنَىٰ فَادْعُوهُ بِهَا ۖ وَذَرُوا الَّذِينَ يُلْحِدُونَ فِي أَسْمَائِهِ ۚ سَيُجْزَوْنَ مَا كَانُوا يَعْمَلُونَ ﴿180﴾ وَمِمَّنْ خَلَقْنَا أُمَّةٌ يَهْدُونَ بِالْحَقِّ وَبِهِ يَعْدِلُونَ ﴿181﴾ وَالَّذِينَ كَذَّبُوا بِآيَاتِنَا سَنَسْتَدْرِجُهُمْ مِنْ حَيْثُ لَا يَعْلَمُونَ ﴿182﴾ وَأُمْلِي لَهُمْ ۚ إِنَّ كَيْدِي مَتِينٌ ﴿183﴾ أَوَلَمْ يَتَفَكَّرُوا ۗ مَا بِصَاحِبِهِمْ مِنْ جِنَّةٍ ۚ إِنْ هُوَ إِلَّا نَذِيرٌ مُبِينٌ ﴿184﴾ أَوَلَمْ يَنْظُرُوا فِي مَلَكُوتِ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضِ وَمَا خَلَقَ اللَّهُ مِنْ شَيْءٍ وَأَنْ عَسَىٰ أَنْ يَكُونَ قَدِ اقْتَرَبَ أَجَلُهُمْ ۖ فَبِأَيِّ حَدِيثٍ بَعْدَهُ يُؤْمِنُونَ ﴿185﴾ مَنْ يُضْلِلِ اللَّهُ فَلَا هَادِيَ لَهُ ۚ وَيَذَرُهُمْ فِي طُغْيَانِهِمْ يَعْمَهُونَ ﴿186﴾ يَسْأَلُونَكَ عَنِ السَّاعَةِ أَيَّانَ مُرْسَاهَا ۖ قُلْ إِنَّمَا عِلْمُهَا عِنْدَ رَبِّي ۖ لَا يُجَلِّيهَا لِوَقْتِهَا إِلَّا هُوَ ۚ ثَقُلَتْ فِي السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضِ ۚ لَا تَأْتِيكُمْ إِلَّا بَغْتَةً ۗ يَسْأَلُونَكَ كَأَنَّكَ حَفِيٌّ عَنْهَا ۖ قُلْ إِنَّمَا عِلْمُهَا عِنْدَ اللَّهِ وَلَٰكِنَّ أَكْثَرَ النَّاسِ لَا يَعْلَمُونَ ﴿187﴾ قُلْ لَا أَمْلِكُ لِنَفْسِي نَفْعًا وَلَا ضَرًّا إِلَّا مَا شَاءَ اللَّهُ ۚ وَلَوْ كُنْتُ أَعْلَمُ الْغَيْبَ لَاسْتَكْثَرْتُ مِنَ الْخَيْرِ وَمَا مَسَّنِيَ السُّوءُ ۚ إِنْ أَنَا إِلَّا نَذِيرٌ وَبَشِيرٌ لِقَوْمٍ يُؤْمِنُونَ ﴿188﴾ هُوَ الَّذِي خَلَقَكُمْ مِنْ نَفْسٍ وَاحِدَةٍ وَجَعَلَ مِنْهَا زَوْجَهَا لِيَسْكُنَ إِلَيْهَا ۖ فَلَمَّا تَغَشَّاهَا حَمَلَتْ حَمْلًا خَفِيفًا فَمَرَّتْ بِهِ ۖ فَلَمَّا أَثْقَلَتْ دَعَوَا اللَّهَ رَبَّهُمَا لَئِنْ آتَيْتَنَا صَالِحًا لَنَكُونَنَّ مِنَ الشَّاكِرِينَ ﴿189﴾ فَلَمَّا آتَاهُمَا صَالِحًا جَعَلَا لَهُ شُرَكَاءَ فِيمَا آتَاهُمَا ۚ فَتَعَالَى اللَّهُ عَمَّا يُشْرِكُونَ ﴿190﴾ أَيُشْرِكُونَ مَا لَا يَخْلُقُ شَيْئًا وَهُمْ يُخْلَقُونَ ﴿191﴾ وَلَا يَسْتَطِيعُونَ لَهُمْ نَصْرًا وَلَا أَنْفُسَهُمْ يَنْصُرُونَ ﴿192﴾ وَإِنْ تَدْعُوهُمْ إِلَى الْهُدَىٰ لَا يَتَّبِعُوكُمْ ۚ سَوَاءٌ عَلَيْكُمْ أَدَعَوْتُمُوهُمْ أَمْ أَنْتُمْ صَامِتُونَ ﴿193﴾ إِنَّ الَّذِينَ تَدْعُونَ مِنْ دُونِ اللَّهِ عِبَادٌ أَمْثَالُكُمْ ۖ فَادْعُوهُمْ فَلْيَسْتَجِيبُوا لَكُمْ إِنْ كُنْتُمْ صَادِقِينَ ﴿194﴾ أَلَهُمْ أَرْجُلٌ يَمْشُونَ بِهَا ۖ أَمْ لَهُمْ أَيْدٍ يَبْطِشُونَ بِهَا ۖ أَمْ لَهُمْ أَعْيُنٌ يُبْصِرُونَ بِهَا ۖ أَمْ لَهُمْ آذَانٌ يَسْمَعُونَ بِهَا ۗ قُلِ ادْعُوا شُرَكَاءَكُمْ ثُمَّ كِيدُونِ فَلَا تُنْظِرُونِ ﴿195﴾ إِنَّ وَلِيِّيَ اللَّهُ الَّذِي نَزَّلَ الْكِتَابَ ۖ وَهُوَ يَتَوَلَّى الصَّالِحِينَ ﴿196﴾ وَالَّذِينَ تَدْعُونَ مِنْ دُونِهِ لَا يَسْتَطِيعُونَ نَصْرَكُمْ وَلَا أَنْفُسَهُمْ يَنْصُرُونَ ﴿197﴾ وَإِنْ تَدْعُوهُمْ إِلَى الْهُدَىٰ لَا يَسْمَعُوا ۖ وَتَرَاهُمْ يَنْظُرُونَ إِلَيْكَ وَهُمْ لَا يُبْصِرُونَ ﴿198﴾ خُذِ الْعَفْوَ وَأْمُرْ بِالْعُرْفِ وَأَعْرِضْ عَنِ الْجَاهِلِينَ ﴿199﴾ وَإِمَّا يَنْزَغَنَّكَ مِنَ الشَّيْطَانِ نَزْغٌ فَاسْتَعِذْ بِاللَّهِ ۚ إِنَّهُ سَمِيعٌ عَلِيمٌ ﴿200﴾ إِنَّ الَّذِينَ اتَّقَوْا إِذَا مَسَّهُمْ طَائِفٌ مِنَ الشَّيْطَانِ تَذَكَّرُوا فَإِذَا هُمْ مُبْصِرُونَ ﴿201﴾ وَإِخْوَانُهُمْ يَمُدُّونَهُمْ فِي الْغَيِّ ثُمَّ لَا يُقْصِرُونَ ﴿202﴾ وَإِذَا لَمْ تَأْتِهِمْ بِآيَةٍ قَالُوا لَوْلَا اجْتَبَيْتَهَا ۚ قُلْ إِنَّمَا أَتَّبِعُ مَا يُوحَىٰ إِلَيَّ مِنْ رَبِّي ۚ هَٰذَا بَصَائِرُ مِنْ رَبِّكُمْ وَهُدًى وَرَحْمَةٌ لِقَوْمٍ يُؤْمِنُونَ ﴿203﴾ وَإِذَا قُرِئَ الْقُرْآنُ فَاسْتَمِعُوا لَهُ وَأَنْصِتُوا لَعَلَّكُمْ تُرْحَمُونَ ﴿204﴾ وَاذْكُرْ رَبَّكَ فِي نَفْسِكَ تَضَرُّعًا وَخِيفَةً وَدُونَ الْجَهْرِ مِنَ الْقَوْلِ بِالْغُدُوِّ وَالْآصَالِ وَلَا تَكُنْ مِنَ الْغَافِلِينَ ﴿205﴾ إِنَّ الَّذِينَ عِنْدَ رَبِّكَ لَا يَسْتَكْبِرُونَ عَنْ عِبَادَتِهِ وَيُسَبِّحُونَهُ وَلَهُ يَسْجُدُونَ ۩ ﴿206﴾
Transliteration in English
Bismillaahir Rahmaanir Raheem
- Kitaabun unzila ilaika falaa yakun fee sadrika harajum minhu litunzira bihee wa zikraa lilmu’mineen
- Ittabi’oo maaa unzila ‘ilaikum mir Rabbikum wa laa tattabi’oo min dooniheee awliyaaa’a; qaleelam maa tazakkaroon
- Wa kam min qaryatin ahlaknaahaa fajaaa’ahaa ba’sunaa bayaatan aw hum qaaa’iloon
- Famaa kaana da’waahum iz jaaa’ahum ba’sunaa illaaa an qaalooo innaa kunnaa zaalimeen
- Falanas ‘alannal lazeena ursila ilaihim wa lanas ‘alannal mursaleen
- Falanaqussanna ‘alaihim bi’ilminw wa maa kunnaa ghaaa’ibeen
- Walwaznu Yawma’izinil haqq; faman saqulat mawaa zeenuhoo fa-ulaaa’ika humul muflihoon
- Wa man khaffat mawaazeenuhoo fa ulaaa’ikal lazeena khasirooo anfusahum bimaa kaanoo bi Aayaatinaa yazlimoon
- Wa laqad makkannaakum fil ardi wa ja’alnaa lakum feehaa ma’aayish; qaleelam maa tashkuroon (section 1)
- Wa laqad khalaqnaakum summa sawwarnaakum summa qulnaa lilmalaaa’ikatis judoo li Aadama fa-sajadooo illaaa Ibleesa lam yakum minas saajideen
- Qaala maa mana’aka allaa tasjuda iz amartuka qaala ana khairum minhu khalaqtanee min naarinw wa khalaqtahoo min teen
- Qaala fahbit minhaa famaa yakoonu laka an tatakabbara feehaa fakhruj innaka minas saaghireen
- Qaala anzirneee ilaa Yawmi yub’asoon
- Qaala innaka minal munzareen
- Qaala fabimaaa aghway tanee la aq’udanna lahum Siraatakal Mustaqeem
- Summa la aatiyannahum mim baini aideehim wa min khalfihim wa ‘an aimaanihim wa ‘an shamaaa’ilihim wa laa tajidu aksarahum shaakireen
- Qaalakhruj minhaa maz’oomam madhooraa; laman tabi’aka minhum la amla’anna Jahannama minkum ajma’een
- Wa yaaa Aadamus kun anta wa zawjukal Jannata fakulaa min haisu shi’tumaa wa laa taqrabaa haazihish shajarata fatakoonaa minaz zaalimeen
- Fawaswasa lahumash Shaitaanu liyubdiya lahumaa maa wooriya ‘anhumaa min saw aatihimaa wa qaala maa nahaakumaa Rabbukumaa ‘an haazihish shajarati illaaa an takoonaa malakaini aw takoonaa minal khaalideen
- Wa qaasamahumaaa innee lakumaa laminan naasiheen
- Fadallaahumaa bighuroor; falammaa zaaqash shajarata badat lahumaa saw aatuhumaa wa tafiqaa yakhsifaani ‘alaihimaa minw waraqil jannati wa naadaahumaa Rabbuhumaaa alam anhakumaa ‘an tilkumash shajarati wa aqul lakumaaa innash Shaitaana lakumaa ‘aduwwum mubeen
- Qaalaa Rabbanaa zalamnaaa anfusanaa wa illam taghfir lanaa wa tarhamnaa lanakoonanna minal khaasireen
- Qaalah bitoo ba’dukum liba’din aduwwunw wa lakum fil ardi mustaqarrunw wa mataa’un ilaaheen
- Qaala feehaa tahyawna wa feehaa tamootoona wa minhaa tukhrajoon (section 2)
- Yaa Baneee Aadama qad anzalnaa ‘alaikum libaasany yuwaaree saw aatikum wa reeshanw wa libaasut taqwaa zaalika khair; zaalika min Aayaatil laahi la’allahum yaz zakkaroon
- Yaa Banee Aadama laa yaftinannnakumush Shaitaanu kamaaa akhraja abawaikum minal Jannati yanzi’u ‘anhumaa libaasahumaa liyuriyahumaa saw aatihimaaa; innahoo yaraakum huwa wa qabeeluhoo min haisu laa tarawnahum; innaa ja’alnash Shayaateena awliyaaa’a lillazeena laa yu’minoon
- Wa izaa fa’aloo faahishatan qaaloo wajadnaa ‘alaihaaa aabaaa’ana wallaahu amaranaa bihaa; qul innal laaha laa ya’muru bilfahshaaa’i a-taqooloona ‘alal laahi maa laa ta’lamoon
- Qul amara Rabbee bilqisti wa aqeemoo wujoohakum ‘inda kulli masjidin wad’oohu mukhliseena lahud deen; kamaa bada akum ta’oodoon
- Fareeqan hadaa wa fareeqan haqqa ‘alaihimud dalaalah; innahumut takhazush Shayaateena awliyaaa’a min doonil laahi wa yahsaboona annahum muhtadoon
- Yaa Banneee Adama khuzoo zeenatakum ‘inda kulli masjidinw wa kuloo washraboo wa laa tusrifoo; innahoo laa yuhibbul musrifeen (section 3)
- Qul man harrama zeenat Allahil lateee akhraja li’ibaadihee wattaiyibaati minar rizq; qul hiya lillazeena aamanoo fil hayaatid dunyaa khaalisatany Yawmal Qiyaamah; kazaalika nufassilul Aayaati li qawminy ya’lamoon
- Qul innamaa harrama Rabbiyal fawaahisha maa zahara minhaa wa maa batana wal isma walbaghya bighairil haqqi wa an tushrikoo billaahi maa lam yunazzil bihee sultaananw wa an taqooloo ‘alal laahi maa laa ta’lamoon
- Wa likulli ummatin ajalun fa izaa jaaa’a ajaluhum laa yasta’ khiroona saa’atanw wa laa yastaqdimoon
- Yaa Banee Aadama immaa ya’tiyannakum Rusulum minkum yaqussoona ‘alaikum Aayaatee famanit taqaa wa aslaha falaa khawfun ‘alaihim wa laa hum yahzanoon
- Wallazeena kazzaboo bi Aayaatinaa wastakbaroo ‘an haaa ulaaa’ika Ashaabun naari hum feehaa khaalidoon
- Faman azlamu mimmanif taraa ‘alal laahi kaziban aw kazzaba bi Aayaatih; ulaaa’ika yanaaluhum naseebuhum minal Kitaab; hatta izaa jaaa’at hum rusulunaa yatawaf fawnahum qaalooo aina maa kuntum tad’oonaa min doonil laahi qaaloo dalloo ‘annaa wa shahidoo ‘alaaa anfusihim annahum kaanoo kaafireen
- Qaalad khuloo feee umamin qad khalat min qablikum minal jinni wal insi fin naari kullamaa dakhalat ummatul la’anat ukhtahaa hattaaa izad daarakoo feehaa jamee’an qaalat ukhraahum li oolaahum Rabbannaa haaa u’laaa’i adalloonaa fa aatihim ‘azaaban di’fam minan naari qaala likullin di’funw wa laakil laa ta’lamoon
- Wa qaalat oolaahum li ukhraahum famaa kaana lakum ‘alainaa min fadlin fazooqul azaaba bimaa kuntum taksiboon (section 4)
- Innal lazeena kazzaboo bi Aayaatinaa wastakbaroo ‘anhaa laa tufattahu lahum abwaabus samaaa’i wa laa yadkhuloonal jannata hattaa yalijal jamalu fee sammil khiyaat; wa kazaalika najzil mujrimeen
- Lahum min jahannama mihaadunw wa min fawqihim ghawaash; wa kazaalika najziz zaalimeen
- Wallazeena aamanoo wa ‘amilus saalihaati laa nukallifu nafsan illaa wus’ahaaa ulaaa’ika Ashaabul jannati hum feehaa khaalidoon
- Wa naza’naa maa fee sudoorihim min ghillin tajree min tahtihimul anhaaru wa qaalul hamdu lillaahil lazee hadaanaa lihaaza wa maa kunna linahtadiya law laaa ann hadaanal laahu laqad jaaa’at Rusulu Rabbinaa bilhaqq; wa noodoo an tilkumul jannnatu ooristumoohaa bimaa kuntum ta’maloon
- Wa naadaa Ashaabul jannati ashaaban Naari an qad wajadnaa maa wa’adannaa Rabbunaa haqqan fahal wajattum maa wa’ada Rabbukum haqqan qaaloo na’am; fa azzana mu’azzinum bainahum al la’natul laahi ‘alaz zaalimeen
- Allazeena yasuddoona ‘an sabeelil laahi wa yabghoo nahaa ‘iwajanw wa hum bil Aakhirati kaafiroon
- Wa bainahumaa hijaab; wa ‘alal A’raafi rijaaluny ya’rifoona kullam biseemaahum; wa naadaw Ashaabal jannati an salaamun ‘alaikum; lam yadkhuloohaa wa hum yatma’oon
- Wa izaa surifat absaaruhum tilqaaa’a Ashaabin Naari qaaloo Rabbanaa laa taj’alnaa ma’al qawmiz zaalimeen (section 5)
- Wa naadaaa Ashaabul a’raafi rijaalany ya’rifoonahum biseemaahum qaaloo maaa aghnaa ‘ankum jam’ukum wa maa kuntum tastakbiroon
- A haaa’ulaaa’il lazeena aqsamtum laa yanaaluhumul laahu bi rahmah; udkhulul Jannata laa khawfun ‘alaikum wa laaa antum tahzanoon
- Wa naadaaa Ashaabun Naari Ashaabal jannati an afeedoo ‘alainaa minal maaa’i aw mimma razaqakumul laah; qaaloo innal laaha harrama humaa ‘alal kaafireen
- Allazeenat takhazoo deenahum lahwanw wa la’i-banw wa gharrat humul hayaatud dunyaa; fal Yawma nannsaahum kamaa nasoo liqaaa’a Yawmihim haazaa wa maa kaanoo bi aayaatinaa yajhadoon
- Wa laqad ji’naahum bi Kitaabin fassalnaahu ‘alaa ‘ilmin hudanw wa rahmatal liqawminy-yu’minoon
- Hal yanzuroona illaa ta’weelah; yawma ya’tee ta’weeluhoo yaqoolul lazeena nasoohu min qablu qad jaaa’at Rusulu Rabbinaa bilhaqq; fahal lanaa min shufa’aaa’a fa yashfa’oo lanaaa aw nuraddu fana’mala ghairal lazee kunnaa na’mal; qad khasirooo anfusahum wa dalla ‘anhum maa kaanoo yaftaroon (section 6)
- Inna Rabbakumul laahul lazee khalaqas samaawaati wal arda fee sittati ayyaamin summas tawaa ‘alal ‘arshi yughshil lailan nahaara yatlu buhoo haseesanw washshamsa walqamara wannujooma musakharaatim bi amrih; alaa lahul khalqu wal-amr; tabaarakal laahu Rabbul ‘aalameen
- Ud’oo Rabbakum tadarru’anw wa khufyah; innahoo laa yuhibbul mu’tadeen
- Wa laa tufsidoo fil ardi ba’da islaahihaa wad’oohu khawfanw wa tama’aa; inna rahmatal laahi qareebum minal muhsineen
- Wa Huwal lazee yursilur riyaaha bushram baina yadai rahmatihee hattaaa izaaa aqallat sahaaban siqaalan suqnaahu libaladim maiyitin fa annzalnaa bihil maaa’a fa akhrajnaa bihee minn kullis samaraat; kazaalika nukhrijul mawtaa la’allakum tazakkaroon
- Walbaladut taiyibu yakhruju nabaatuhoo bi-izni Rabbihee wallazee khabusa laa yakhruju illaa nakidaa; kazaalika nusarriful Aayaati liqawminy yashkuroon (section 7)
- Laqad arsalnaa noohan ilaa qawmihee faqaala yaa qawmi’ budul laaha maa lakum min ilaahin ghairuhoo inneee akhaafu ‘alaikum ‘azaaba Yawmin ‘Azeem
- Qaalal mala-u min qaw miheee innaa lanaraaka fee dalaalim mubeen
- Qaala yaa qawmi laisa bee dalaalatunw wa laakinnee Rasoolum mir Rabbil ‘aalameen
- Uballighukum Risaalaati Rabbee wa ansahu lakum wa a’lamu minal laahi maa laa ta’lamoon
- Awa ‘ajibtum an jaaa’akum zikrum mir Rabbikum ‘alaa rajulim minkum liyunzirakum wa litattaqoo wa la’allakum turhamoon
- Fakazzaboohu fa anjai naahu wallazeena ma’ahoo fil fulki wa aghraqnal lazeena kazzaboo bi Aayaatinaa; innahum kaanoo qawman ‘ameen (section 8)
- Wa ilaa ‘aadin akhaahum Hoodaa; qaala yaa qawmi’ budul laaha maa lakum min ilaahin ghairuh; afalaa tattaqoon
- Qaalal mala ul lazeena kafaroo min qawmiheee innaa lanaraaka fee safaahatinw wa innaa la nazunnuka minal kaazibeen
- Qaala yaa qawmi laisa bee safaahatunw wa laakinnee Rasoolum mir Rabbil ‘aalameen
- Uballighukum Risaalaati Rabbee wa ana lakum naasihun ameen
- Awa ‘ajibtum an jaaa’akum zikrum mir Rabbikum ‘alaa rajulim minkum liyunzirakum; wazkurooo iz ja’alakum khulafaaa’a mim ba’di qawmi noohinw wa zaadakum filkhalqi bastatan fazkurooo aalaaa’al laahi la’allakum tuflihoon
- Qaalooo aji’tanaa lina’budal laaha wahdahoo wa nazara maa kaana ya’budu aabaaa’unaa fa’tinaa bimaa ta’idunaaa in kunta minas saadiqeen
- Qaala qad waqa’a alaikum mir Rabbikum rijsunw wa ghadab, atujaadiloonanee feee asmaaa’in sammaitumoohaaa antum wa aabaaa’ukum maa nazzalal laahu bihaa min sultaan; fantazirooo innee ma’akum minal muntazireen
- Fa anjainaahu wallazeena ma’ahoo birahmatim minnaa wa qata’naa daabiral lazeena kazzaboo bi Aayaatinaa wa maa kaanoo mu’mineen (section 9)
- Wa ilaa Samooda akhaahum Saalihaa; qaala yaa qawmi’ budul laaha maa lakum min ilaahin ghairuhoo qad jaaa’atkum baiyinatum mir Rabbikum haazihee naaqatul laahi lakum Aayatan fazaroohaa ta’kul feee ardil laahi wa laa tamassoohaa bisooo’in fa ya’khuzakum ‘azaabun aleem
- Wazkuroo iz ja’alakum khulafaaa’a mim ba’di ‘Aadinw wa bawwa akum fil ardi tattakhizoona min suhoolihaa qusooranw wa tanhitoonal jibaala buyootan fazkurooo aalaaa’al laahi wa laa ta’saw fil ardi mufsideen
- Qaalal mala ul lazeenas takbaroo min qawmihee lillazeenas tud’ifoo liman aamana minhum ata’lamoona anna Saaliham mursalum mir Rabbih; qaalooo innaa bimaaa ursila bihee mu’minoon
- Qaalal lazeenas takbarooo innaa billazeee aamanntum bihee kaafiroon
- Fa’aqarun naaqata wa’ataw ‘an amri Rabbihim wa qaaloo yaa Saalihu’ tinaa bimaa ta’idunaaa in kunta minal mursaleen
- Fa akhazat humur rajfatu fa asbahoo fee daarihim jaasimeen
- Fa tawalla ‘anhum wa qaala yaa qawmi laqad ablaghtukum Risaalata Rabbee wa nasahtu lakum wa laakil laa tuhibboonan naasiheen
- Wa Lootan iz qaala liqawmiheee ata’toonal faahishata maa sabaqakum bihaa min ahadim minal ‘aalameen
- Innakum lata’toonar rijaala shahwatam min doonin nisaaa’; bal antumqawmum musrifoon
- Wa maa kaana jawaaba qawmihee illaa an qaalooo akhrijoohum min qaryatikum innahum unaasuny yatatahharoon
- Fa anjainaahu wa ahlahooo illam ra atahoo kaanat minal ghaabireen
- Wa ‘amtarnaa ‘alaihim mataran fanzur kaifa kaana aaqibatul mujrimeen (section 10)
- Wa ilaa Madyana akhaahum Shu’aybaa; qaala yaa qawmi’ budul laaha maa lakum min ilaahin ghairuhoo qad jaaa’atkum baiyinatum mir Rabbikum fa awful kaila walmeezaana wa laa tabkhasun naasa ashyaa’ahum wa laa tufsidoo fil ardi ba’da islaahihaa; zaalikum khairul lakum in kuntum mu’mineen
- Wa laa taq’udoo bikulli siraatin too’idoona wa tasuddoona ‘an sabeelil laahi man aamana bihee wa tabghoonahaa ‘iwajaa; waz kurooo iz kuntum qaleelan fakassarakum wanzuroo kaifa kaana ‘aaqibatul mufsideen
- Wa In kaana taaa’ifatum minkum aamanoo billazeee ursiltu bihee wa taaa’ifatul lam yu’minoo fasbiroo hattaa yahkumal laahu bainanaa; wa Huwa khairul haakimeen (End Juz 8)
- Qaalal mala ul lazeenas takbaroo min qawmihee lanukhrijannaka yaa Shu’aibu wallazeena aamanoo ma’aka min qaryatinaaa aw lata’oo dunna fee millatinaa; qaala awa law kunnaa kaariheen
- Qadif tarainaa ‘alal laahi kaziban in ‘udnaa fee millatikum ba’da iz najjaanal laahu minhaa; wa maa yakoonu lanaaa an na’ooda feehaaa illaaa ai yashaaa’al laahu Rabbunaa; wasi’a Rabbunaa kulla shai’in ‘ilmaa; ‘alal laahi tawakkalnaa; Rabbanaf tah bainanaa wa baina qawminaa bilhaqqi wa Anta khairul faatiheen
- Wa qaalal mala ul lazeena kafaroo min qawmihee la’init taba’tum Shu’aiban innakum izal lakhaasiroon
- Fa akhazat humur rajfatu fa asbahoo fee daarihim jaasimeen
- Allazeena kazzaboo Shu’aiban ka al lam yaghnaw feehaa; allazeena kazzaboo Shu’aiban kaanoo humul khaasireen
- Fatawalla ‘anhum wa qaala yaa qawmi laqad ablaghtukum Risaalaati Rabbee wa nasahtu lakum fakaifa aasaa’alaa qawmin kaafireen (section 11)
- Wa maaa arsalnaa fee qaryatim min Nabiyyin illaaa akhaznaaa ahlahaa bil ba’saaa’i waddarraaa’i la’allahum yaddarra’oon
- Summa baddalnaa makaa nas saiyi’atil hasanata hattaa ‘afaw wa qaaloo qad massa aabaa’anad darraaa’u wassarraaa’u fa akhaznaahum baghtatanw wa hum laa yash’uroon
- Wa law anna ahlal quraaa aamanoo wattaqaw lafatahnaa ‘alaihim barakaatim minas samaaa’i wal ardi wa laakin kazzaboo fa akhaznaahum bimaa kaanoo yaksiboon
- Afa amina ahlul quraaa ai ya’tiyahum ba’sunaa bayaatanw wa hum naaa’imoon
- Awa amina ahlul quraaa ai ya’tiyahum ba’sunaa duhanw wa hum yal’aboon
- Afa aminoo makral laah; falaa ya’manu makral laahi illal qawmul khaasiroon (section 12)
- Awa lam yahdi lillazeena yarisoonal arda mim ba’di ahlihaaa al law nashaaa’u asabnaahum bizunoobihim; wa natba’u ‘alaa quloobihim fahum laa yasma’oon
- Tilkal quraa naqussu ‘alaika min ambaaa’ihaa; wa laqad jaaa’at hum Rusuluhum bilbaiyinaati famaa kaanoo liyu’minoo bimaa kazzaboo min qabl; kazaalika yatba’ul laahu ‘alaa quloobil kaafireen
- Wa maa wajadnaa li aksarihim min ‘ahd; wa inw wajadnaaa aksarahum lafaasiqeen
- Summa ba’asnaa mim ba’dihim Moosaa bi Aayaatinaaa ilaa Fir’awana wa mala’ihee fazalamoo bihaa fanzur kaifa kaana ‘aaqibatul mufsideen
- Wa qaala Moosaa yaa Fir’awnu inneee Rasoolum mir Rabbil ‘aalameen
- Haqeequn ‘alaaa al laaa aqoola ‘alal laahi illal haqq; qad ji’tukum bibaiyinatim mir Rabbikum fa arsil ma’iya Baneee Israaa’eel
- Qaala in kunnta ji’ta bi Aayatin fa’tibihaa in kunnta minas saadiqeen
- Fa alqaa ‘asaahu fa izaa hiya su’baanum mubeen
- Wa naza’a yadahoo fa izaa hiya baidaaa’u linnaazireen (section 13)
- Qaalal mala-u min qawmi Fir’awna inna haazaa lasaahirun ‘aleem
- Yureedu ai yukhrijakum min ardikum famaazaa ta’muroon
- Qaalooo arjih wa akhaahu wa arsil filmadaaa’ini haashireen
- Ya’tooka bikulli saahirin ‘aleem
- Wa jaaa’as saharatu Fir’awna qaaloo inna lanaa la ajjran in kunnaa nahnul ghaalibeen
- Qaala na’am wa innakum laminal muqarrabeen
- Qaaloo yaa Moosaaa immaaa an tulqiya wa immaaa an nakoona nahnul mulqeen
- Qaala alqoo falam maaa alqaw saharooo a’yunannaasi wastarhaboohum wa jaaa’oo bisihrin ‘azeem
- Wa awhainaaa ilaa Moosaaa an alqi ‘asaaka fa izaa hiya talqafu maa ya’fikoon
- Fawaqa’al haqqu wa batala maa kaanoo ya’maloon
- Faghuliboo hunaalika wanqalaboo saaghireen
- Wa ulqiyas saharatu saajideen
- Qaaloo aamannaa bi Rabbil ‘aalameen
- Rabbi Moosaa wa Haaroon
- Qaala Fir’awnu aamantum bihee qabla an aazana lakum; inna haaza lamakrum makartumoohu filmadeenati litukhrijoo minhaaa ahlahaa fasawfa ta’lamoon
- La uqatti’anna aidiyakum wa arjulakum min khilaafin summa la usallibannakum ajma’een
- Qaaloo innaaa ilaa Rabbinaa munqaliboon
- Wa maa tanqimu minnaaa illaaa an aamannaa bi Aayaati Rabbinaa lammaa jaaa’atnaa; Rabbanaaa afrigh ‘alainaa sabranw wa tawaffanaa muslimeen (section 14)
- Wa qaalal mala-u min qawmi Fir’awna atazaru Moosaa wa qawmahoo liyufsidoo fil ardi wa yazaraka wa aalihatak; qaala sanuqattilu abnaaa ‘ahum wa nastahyee nisaaa’ahum wa innaa fawqahum qaahiroon
- Qaala Moosaa liqawmihis ta’eenoo billaahi wasbiroo innal arda lillaahi yoorisuhaa mai yashaaa’u min ‘ibaadihee wal ‘aaqibatu lilmuttaqeen
- Qaaloo oozeenaa min qabli an ta’tiyanaa wa mim ba’di maa ji’tanaa; qaala ‘asaa Rabbukum ai yuhlika ‘aduwwakum wa yastakhli fakum fil ardi fayanzura kaifa ta’maloon (section 15)
- Wa laqad akhaznaaa Aala Fir’awna bis sineena wa naqsim minas samaraati la’allahum yazzakkaroon
- Fa izaa jaaa’at humul hasanatu qaaloo lanaa haazihee wa in tusibhum saiyi’atuny yattaiyaroo bi Moosaa wa mam ma’ah; alaaa innamaa taaa’iruhum ‘indal laahi wa laakinna aksarahum laa ya’lamoon
- Wa qaaloo mahmaa taatinaa bihee min Aayatil litas’haranaa bihaa famaa nahnu laka bimu’mineen
- Fa arsalnaa ‘alaihimut toofaana waljaraada walqum mala waddafaadi’a waddama Aayaatim mufassalaatin fastakbaroo wa kaanoo qawmam mujrimeen
- Wa lammaa waqa’a ‘alaihimur rijzu qaaloo ya Moosad-u lanaa rabbaka bimaa ‘ahida ‘indaka la’in kashafta ‘annar rijza lanu ‘minanna laka wa lanursilanna ma’aka Banee Israaa’eel
- Falammaa kashafnaa ‘anhumur rijza ilaaa ajalin hum baalighoohu izaa hum yankusoon
- Fantaqamnaa minhum fa’aghraqnaahum Fil’yammi Bi Annahum kazzaboo bi Aayaatinaa wa kaanoo ‘anhaa ghaafileen
- Wa awrasnal qawmal lazeena kaanoo yustad’afoona mashaariqal ardi wa maghaari bahal latee baaraknaa feehaa wa tammat kalimatu Rabbikal husnaa ‘alaa Baneee Israaa’eela bimaa sabaroo wa dammarnaa maa kaana yasna’u Fir’awnu wa qawmuhoo wa maa kaanoo ya’rishoon
- Wa jaawaznaa bi Banneee Israaa’eelal bahra fa ataw ‘alaa qawminy ya’kufoona ‘alaaa asnaamil lahum; qaaloo yaa Moosaj’al lanaa ilaahan kamaa lahum aalihah; qaala innakum qawmun tajhaloon
- Innaa haaa’ulaaa’i mutabbarum maa hum feehi wa baatilum maa kaanoo ya’maloon
- Qaala a-ghairal laahi abgheekum ilaahanw wa Huwa faddalakum ‘alal ‘aalameen
- Wa iz anjainaakum min Aali Fir’awna yasoomoo nakum sooo’al ‘azaab, yuqattiloona abnaaa’akum wa yastahyoona nisaaa’akum; wa fee zaalikum balaaa’um mir Rabbikum ‘azeem (section 16)
- Wa waa’adnaa Moosaa salaaseena lailatanw wa at mamnaahaa bi’ashrim fatamma meeqaatu Rabbihee arba’eena lailah; wa qaala Moosaa liakheehi Haaroonakh lufnee fee qawmee wa aslih wa laa tattabi’ sabeelal mufsideen
- Wa lammaa jaaa’a Moosa limeeqaatinaa wa kallamahoo Rabbuhoo qaala Rabbi arineee anzur ilaik; qaala lan taraanee wa laakininzur ilal jabali fa inistaqarra makaanahoo fasawfa taraanee; falammaa tajallaa Rabbuhoo liljabali ja’alahoo dakkanw wa kharra Moosaa sa’iqaa; falammaaa afaaqa qaala Subhaanaka tubtu ilaika wa ana awwalul mu’mineen
- Qaala yaa Moosaaa innis tafaituka ‘alan naasi bi Risaalaatee wa bi kalaamee fakhuz maaa aataituka wa kum minash shaakireen
- Wa katabnaa lahoo fil alwaahi minkulli shai’im maw’izaanw wa tafseelal likulli shai’in fakhuzhaa biquwwatinw wa’mur qawmaka ya’khuzoo bi ahsanihaa; sa’ooreekum daaral faasiqeen
- Sa asrifu ‘an Aayaatiyal lazeena yatakabbaroona fil ardi bighairil haqq; wa iny-yaraw kulla Aayatil laa yu’minoo bihaa wa iny-yaraw sabeelar rushdi laa yattakhizoohu sabeelanw wa iny-yaraw sabeelal ghaiyi yattakhizoohu sabeelaa; zaalika bi annahum kazzaboo bi Aayaatinaa wa kaanoo ‘anhaa ghaafileen
- Wallazeena kazzaboo bi Aayaatinaa wa liqaaa’il Aakhirati habitat ‘amaaluhum; hal yujzawna illaa maa kaanoo ya’maloon (section 17)
- Wattakhaza qawmu Moosaa mim ba’dihee min huliyyihim ‘ijlan jasadal lahoo khuwaar; alam yaraw annahoo laa yukallimuhum wa laa yahdeehim sabeelaa; ittakhazoohu wa kaanoo zaalimeen
- Wa lammaa suqita feee aideehim wa ra aw annahum qad dalloo qaaloo la’il lam yarhamnaa Rabbunaa wa yaghfir lanaa lanakoonanna minal khaasireen
- Wa lammaa raja’a Moosaaa ilaa qawmihee ghadbaana asifan qaala bi’samaa khalaftumoonee min ba’dee ‘a-‘ajiltum amra Rabbikum wa alqal alwaaha wa akhaza bira’si akheehi yajurruhoo ilaiyh; qaalab na umma innal qawmas tad’afoonee wa kadoo yaqtu loonanee; falaa tushmit biyal a’daaa’a wa laa taj’alnee ma’al qawmiz zaalimeen
- Qaala Rabbighfirlee wa li akhee wa adkhilnaa fee rahmatika wa Anta arhamur raahimeen (section 18)
- Innal lazeenat takhazul ‘ijla-sa yanaaluhum ghadabum mir Rabbihim wa zillatun fil hayaatid dunyaa; wa kazaalika najzil muftareen
- Wallazeena ‘amilus saiyiaati summa taaboo min ba’dihaa wa aamanooo inna Rabbaka min ba’dihaa la Ghafoorur Raheem
- Wa lammaa sakata ‘an Moosal ghadabu akhazal alwaaha wa fee nuskhatihaa hudanw wa rahmatul lil lazeena hum li Rabbihim yarhaboon
- Wakhtaara Moosaa qawmahoo sab’eena rajulal li meeqaatinaa falammaa akhazat humur rajfatu qaala Rabbi law shi’ta ahlaktahum min qablu wa iyyaay; ‘a tuhlikuna bimaa fa’alas sufahaaa’u minaa in hiya illaa fitnatuka tudillu bihaa man tashaaa’u wa tahdee man tashaaa; Anta waliyyunaa faghfir lanaa warhamnaa wa Anta khairul ghaafireen
- Waktub lanaa fee haazi hid dunyaa hasanatanw wa fil Aakhirati innaa hudnaaa ilaik; qaala ‘azaabee useebu bihee man ashaaa’u wa rahmatee wasi’at kulla shai’; fasa aktubuhaa lil lazeena yattaqoona wa yu’toonaz Zakaata wal lazeena hum bi Aayaatinaa yu’minoon
- Allazeena yattabi’oonar Rasoolan Nabiyyal ummiyyal lazee yajidoonahoo maktooban ‘indahum fit Tawraati wal Injeeli ya’ muruhum bilma’roofi wa yanhaahum ‘anil munkari wa yuhillu lahumul taiyibaati wa yuharrimu ‘alaihimul khabaaa’isa wa yada’u ‘anhum israhum wal aghlaalal latee kaanat ‘alaihim; fallazeena aamanoo bihee wa ‘azzaroohu wa nasaroohu wattaba’un nooral lazeee unzila ma’ahooo ulaaa’ika humul muflihoon (section 19)
- Qul yaaa aiyuhan naasu innee Rasoolul laahi ilaikum jamee’anil lazee lahoo mulkus samaawaati wal ardi laaa ilaaha illaa Huwa yuhyee wa yumeetu fa aaminoo billaahi wa Rasoolihin Nabiyyil ummiy yil lazee yu’minu billaahi wa Kalimaatihee wattabi’oohu la’allakum tahtadoon
- Wa min qawmi Moosaaa ummatuny yahdoona bilhaqqi wa bihee ya’diloon
- Wa qatta’ naahumus natai ‘ashrata asbaatan umamaa; wa awhainaa ilaa Moosaaa izis tasqaahu qawmuhooo anid rib bi’asaakal hajara fambajasat minhus nata ‘ashrata ‘ainan qad ‘alima kullu unaasim mashrabahum; wa zallalnaa ‘alaihimul ghamaama wa anzalnaa ‘alaihimul manna was Salwaa kuloo min taiyibaati maa razaqnaakum; wa maa zalamoonaa wa laakin kaanooo anfusahum yazlimoon
- Wa iz qeela lahumuskunoo haazihil qaryata wa kuloo minhaa haisu shi’tum wa qooloo hittatunw wadkhulul baaba sujjadan naghfir lakum khateee’aatikum; sanazeedul muhsineen
- Fabaddalal lazeena zalamoo minhum qawlan ghairal lazee qeela lahum fa arsalnaa ‘alaihim rijzan minas samaaa’i bimaa kaanoo yazlimoon (section 20)
- Was’alhum ‘anil qaryatil latee kaanat haadiratal bahri iz ya’doona fis Sabti iz ta’teehim heetaanuhum yawma Sabtihim shurra’anw wa yawma laa yasbitoona laa ta’teehim; kazaalika nabloohum bimaa kaanoo yafsuqoon
- Wa iz qaalat ummatum minhum lima ta’izoona qaw manil laahu muhlikuhum aw mu’azzibuhum ‘azaaban shadeedan qaaloo ma’ziratan ilaa Rabbikum wa la’allahum yattaqoon
- Falammaa nasoo maa zukkiroo bihee anjainal lazeena yanhawna ‘anis sooo’i wa akhaznal lazeena zalamoo bi’azaabim ba’eesim bimaa kaanoo yafsuqoon
- Falammaa ‘ataw ‘ammaa nuhoo ‘anhu qulna lahum koonoo qiradatan khaasi’een
- Wa iz ta azzana Rabbuka la yab’asannna ‘alaihim ilaa Yawmil Qiyaamati mai yasoomuhum sooo’al ‘azaab; inna Rabbaka lasaree’ul ‘iqaabi wa innahoo la Ghafoorur Raheem
- Wa qatta’naahum fil ardi umaman min humus saalihoona wa min hum doona zaalika wa balawnaahum bil hasanaati was saiyi’aati la’allahum yarji’oon
- Fakhalafa min ba’dihim khalfunw warisul Kitaaba ya’khuzoona ‘arada haazal adnaa wa yaqooloona sayughfaru lanaa wa iny ya’tihim ‘aradun misluhoo ya’khuzooh; alam yu’khaz ‘alaihim meesaaqul Kitaabi an laa yaqooloo ‘alal laahi illal haqqa wa darasoo maa feeh; wad Daarul Aakhirtu khairul lil lazeena yattaqoon; afalaa ta’qiloon
- Wallazeena yumas sikoona bil Kitaabi wa aqaamus Salaata innaa laa nudeeu’ajral musliheen
- Wa iz nataqnal jabala fawqahum ka annahoo zullatunw wa zannooo annahoo waaqi’un bihim khuzoo maaa aatainaakum biquwwatinw wazkuroo maa feehi la’allakum tattaqoon (section 21)
- Wa iz akhaza Rabbuka min Baneee Aadama min zuhoorihim zurriyyatahum wa ashhadahum ‘alaa anfusihim alastu bi Rabbikum qaaloo balaa shahidnaaa; an taqooloo Yawmal Qiyaamati innaa kunnaa ‘an haazaa ghaafileen
- Aw taqoolooo innamaaa ashraka aabaaa ‘unaa min qablu wa kunnaa zurriyyatan min ba’dihim ‘a fa tuhlikunaa bi maa fa’alal mubtiloon
- Wa kazaalika nufassilul Aayaati wa la’allahum yarji’oon
- Watlu ‘alaihim naba allazeee aatainaahu Aayaatinaa fansalakha minhaa fa atba’a hush Shaytaanoo fakaana minal ghaaween
- Wa law shi’naa larafa’naahu bihaa wa laakin nahooo akhlada ilal ardi wattaba’a hawaah; famasaluhoo kamasalil kalbi in tahmil ‘alaihi yalhas aw tatruk hu yalhas; zaalika masalul qawmil lazeena kazzaboo bi Aayaatinaa; faqsusil qasasa la’allahum yatafakkaroon
- Saaa’a masalanil qawmul lazeena kazzaboo bi Aayaatinaa wa anfusahum kaanoo yazlimoon
- Mai yahdil laahu fa huwal muhtadee wa mai yudlil fa ulaaa’ika humul khaasiroon
- Wa laqad zara’naa li jahannama kaseeran minal jinni wal insi lahum quloobul laa yafqahoona bihaa wa lahum a’yunul laa yubisiroona bihaa wa lahum aazaanul laa yasma’oona bihaa; ulaaa’ika kal an’aami bal hum adall; ulaaa’ika humul ghaafiloon
- Wa lillaahil Asmaaa ‘ul Husnaa fad’oohu bihaa wa zarul lazeena yulhidoona feee Asmaaa’ih; sa yujzawna maa kaanoo ya’maloon
- Wa mimman khalaqnaaa ummatuny yahdoona bilhaqqi wa bihee ya’diloon (section 22)
- Wallazeena kazzaboo bi Aayaatinaa sanastadrijuhum min haisu laa ya’lamoon
- Wa umlee lahum; inna kaidee mateen
- Awalam yatafakkaroo maa bisaahibihim min jinnah; in huwa illaa nazeerun mubeen
- Awalam yanzuroo fee malakootis samaawaati wal ardi wa maa khalaqal laahu min shai’inw wa an ‘asaaa ai yakoona qadiqtaraba ajaluhum fa bi ayyi hadeesin ba’dahoo yu’minoon
- Mai yudlil lillaahi falaa haadiya lah; wa yazaruhum fee tughyaanihim ya’mahoon
- Yas’aloonaka ‘anis Saa’ati aiyaana mursaahaa qul innamaa ‘ilmuhaa ‘inda Rabbee laa yujalleehaa liwaqtihaaa illaa Hoo; saqulat fis samaawaati wal ard; laa ta’teekum illaa baghtah; yas’aloonaka ka annaka hafiyyun ‘anhaa qul innamaa ‘ilmuhaa ‘indal laahi wa laakinna aksaran naasi laa ya’lamoon
- Qul laaa amliku linafsee naf’anw wa laa darran illaa maa shaaa’al laah; wa law kuntu a’lamul ghaiba lastaksartu minal khairi wa maa massaniyas soo’; in ana illaa nazeerunw wa basheerul liqawminy yu’minoon (section 23)
- Huwal lazee khalaqakum min nafsinw waahidatinw wa ja’ala minhaa zawjahaa liyas kuna ilaihaa falammaa taghash shaahaa hamalat hamlan khafeefan famarrat bihee falammaaa asqalad da’a wallaaha Rabbahumaa la’in aataitana saalihal lanakoonanna minash shaakireen
- Falammaaa aataahumaa saalihan ja’alaa lahoo shurakaaa’a feemaaa aataahumaa; fata’aalal laahu ‘ammaa yushrikoon
- A yushrikoona maa laa yakhluqu shai’anw wa hum yukhlaqoon
- Wa laa yastatee’oona lahum nasranw wa laaa anfusahum yansuroon
- Wa in tad’oohum ilalhudaa laa yattabi’ookum; sawaaa’un ‘alaikum a-da’awtumoohum ‘am antum saamitoon
- Innal lazeena tad’oona min doonil laahi ‘ibaadun amsaalukum fad’oohum fal yastajeeboo lakum in kuntum saadiqeen
- ‘A lahum arjuluny yamshoona bihaa ‘am lahum ‘aidiny yabtishoona bihaaa ‘am lahum a’yunuy yubsiroona bihaaa ‘am lahum aazaanuny yasma’oona bihaa; qulid’oo shurakaaa’akum thumma keedooni falaa tunziroon
- Inna waliyyial laahul lazee nazzalal Kitaaba wa Huwa yatawallas saaliheen
- Wallazeena tad’oona min doonihee laa yastatee’oona nasrakum wa laaa anfusahum yansuroon
- Wa in tad’oohum ilal hudaa laa yasma’oo wa taraahum yanzuroona ilaika wa hum laa yubsiroon
- Khuzil ‘afwa wa mur bil’urfi wa A’rid ‘anil jaahileen
- Wa immaa yanzaghannaka minash Shaitaani nazghun fasta’iz billaah; innahoo Samee’un Aleem
- Innal lazeenat taqaw izaa massahum taaa’ifun minash Shaitaani tazakkaroo fa izaa hum mubsiroon
- Wa ikhwaanuhum yamuddoonahum fil ghayyi thumma laa yuqsiroon
- Wa izaa lam ta’tihim bi aayatin qaaloo law lajtabai tahaa; qul innamaaa attabi’u maa yoohaaa ilaiya mir Rabbee; haazaa basaaa’iru mir Rabbikum wa hudanw wa rahmatul liqawminy yu’minoon
- Wa izaa quri’al Quraanu fastami’oo lahoo wa ansitoo la ‘allakum turhamoon
- Wazkur Rabbaka fee nafsika tadarru’anw wa kheefatanw wa doonal jahri minal qawli bilghuduwwi wal aasali wa laa takum minal ghaafileen
- Innal lazeena ‘inda Rabbika laa yastakbiroona ‘an ‘ibaadatihee wa yusabbihoonahoo wa lahoo yasjudoon (section 24) (make sajda)
In the name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful.
- Lam. Mim. Sad.
- (It is) a Scripture that is revealed unto thee (Muhammad) – so let there be no heaviness in thy heart therefrom – that thou mayst warn thereby, and (it is) a Reminder unto believers.
- (Saying): Follow that which is sent down unto you from your Lord, and follow no protecting friends beside Him. Little do ye recollect!
- How many a township have We destroyed! As a raid by night, or while they slept at noon, Our terror came unto them.
- No plea had they, when Our terror came unto them, save that they said: Lo! We were wrong-doers.
- Then verily We shall question those unto whom (Our message) hath been sent, and verily We shall question the messengers.
- Then verily We shall narrate unto them (the event) with knowledge, for We were not absent (when it came to pass).
- The weighing on that day is the true (weighing). As for those whose scale is heavy, they are the successful.
- And as for those whose scale is light: those are they who lose their souls because they used to wrong Our revelations.
- And We have given you (mankind) power in the earth, and appointed for you therein livelihoods. Little give ye thanks!
- And We created you, then fashioned you, then told the angels: Fall ye prostrate before Adam! And they fell prostrate, all save Iblis, who was not of those who make prostration.
- He said: What hindered thee that thou didst not fall prostrate when I bade thee? (Iblis) said: I am better than him. Thou createdst me of fire while him Thou didst create of mud.
- He said: Then go down hence! It is not for thee to show pride here, so go forth! Lo! thou art of those degraded.
- He said: Reprieve me till the day when they are raised (from the dead).
- He said: Lo! thou art of those reprieved.
- He said: Now, because Thou hast sent me astray, verily I shall lurk in ambush for them on Thy Right Path.
- Then I shall come upon them from before them and from behind them and from their right hands and from their left hands, and Thou wilt not find most of them beholden (unto Thee).
- He said: Go forth from hence, degraded, banished. As for such of them as follow thee, surely I will fill hell with all of you.
- And (unto man): O Adam! Dwell thou and thy wife in the Garden and eat from whence ye will, but come not nigh this tree lest ye become wrong-doers.
- Then Satan whispered to them that he might manifest unto them that which was hidden from them of their shame, and he said: Your Lord forbade you from this tree only lest ye should become angels or become of the immortals.
- And he swore unto them (saying): Lo! I am a sincere adviser unto you.
- Thus did he lead them on with guile. And when they tasted of the tree their shame was manifest to them and they began to hide (by heaping) on themselves some of the leaves of the Garden. And their Lord called them, (saying): Did I not forbid you from that tree and tell you: Lo! Satan is an open enemy to you?
- They said: Our Lord! We have wronged ourselves. If thou forgive us not and have not mercy on us, surely we are of the lost!
- He said: Go down (from hence), one of you a foe unto the other. There will be for you on earth a habitation and provision for a while.
- He said: There shall ye live, and there shall ye die, and thence shall ye be brought forth.
- O Children of Adam! We have revealed unto you raiment to conceal your shame, and splendid vesture, but the raiment of restraint from evil, that is best. This is of the revelations of Allah, that they may remember.
- O Children of Adam! Let not Satan seduce you as he caused your (first) parents to go forth from the Garden and tore off from them their robe (of innocence) that he might manifest their shame to them. Lo! he seeth you, he and his tribe, from whence ye see him not. Lo! We have made the devils protecting friends for those who believe not.
- And when they do some lewdness they say: We found our fathers doing it and Allah hath enjoined it on us. Say: Allah, verily, enjoineth not lewdness. Tell ye concerning Allah that which ye know not?
- Say: My Lord enjoineth justice. And set your faces upright (toward Him) at every place of worship and call upon Him, making religion pure for Him (only). As He brought you into being, so return ye (unto Him).
- A party hath He led aright, while error hath just hold over (another) party, for lo! they choose the devils for protecting supporters instead of Allah and deem that they are rightly guided.
- O Children of Adam! Look to your adornment at every place of worship, and eat and drink, but be not prodigal. Lo! He loveth not the prodigals.
- Say: Who hath forbidden the adornment of Allah which He hath brought forth for His bondmen, and the good things of His providing? Say: Such, on the Day of Resurrection, will be only for those who believed during the life of the world. Thus do we detail Our revelations for people who have knowledge.
- Say: My Lord forbiddeth only indecencies, such of them as are apparent and such as are within, and sin and wrongful oppression, and that ye associate with Allah that for which no warrant hath been revealed, and that ye tell concerning Allah that which ye know not.
- And every nation hath its term, and when its term cometh, they cannot put it off an hour nor yet advance (it).
- O Children of Adam! When messengers of your own come unto you who narrate unto you My revelations, then whosoever refraineth from evil and amendeth – there shall no fear come upon them neither shall they grieve.
- But they who deny Our revelations and scorn them – each are rightful owners of the Fire; they will abide therein.
- Who doeth greater wrong than he who inventeth a lie concerning Allah or denieth Our tokens. (For such) their appointed portion of the Book (of destiny) reacheth them till, when Our messengers come to gather them, they say: Where (now) is that to which ye cried beside Allah? They say: They have departed from us. And they testify against themselves that they were disbelievers.
- He saith: Enter into the Fire among nations of the jinn and humankind who passed away before you. Every time a nation entereth, it curseth its sister (nation) till, when they have all been made to follow one another thither, the last of them saith unto the first of them: Our Lord! These led us astray, so give them double torment of the Fire. He saith: For each one there is double (torment), but ye know not.
- And the first of them saith unto the last of them: Ye were no whit better than us, so taste the doom for what ye used to earn.
- Lo! they who deny Our revelations and scorn them, for them the gates of heaven will nor be opened not will they enter the Garden until the camel goeth through the needle’s eye. Thus do We requite the guilty.
- Theirs will be a bed of hell, and over them coverings (of hell). Thus do We requite wrong-doers.
- But (as for) those who believe and do good works – We tax not any soul beyond its scope – Such are rightful owners of the Garden. They abide therein.
- And We remove whatever rancour may be in their hearts. Rivers flow beneath them. And they say: The praise to Allah, Who hath guided us to this. We could not truly have been led aright if Allah had not guided us. Verily the messengers of our Lord did bring the Truth. And it is cried unto them: This is the Garden. Ye inherit it for what ye used to do.
- And the dwellers of the Garden cry unto the dwellers of the Fire: We have found that which our Lord promised us (to be) the Truth. Have ye (too) found that which your Lord promised the Truth? They say: Yea, verily. And a crier in between them crieth: The curse of Allah is on evil-doers,
- Who debar (men) from the path of Allah and would have it crooked, and who are disbelievers in the Last Day.
- Between them is a veil. And on the Heights are men who know them all by their marks. And they call unto the dwellers of the Garden: Peace be unto you! They enter it not although they hope (to enter).
- And when their eyes are turned toward the dwellers of the Fire, they say: Our Lord! Place us not with the wrong-doing folk.
- And the dwellers on the Heights call unto men whom they know by their marks, (saying): What did your multitude and that in which ye took your pride avail you?
- Are these they of whom ye swore that Allah would not show them mercy? (Unto them it hath been said): Enter the Garden. No fear shall come upon you nor is it ye who will grieve.
- And the dwellers of the Fire cry out unto the dwellers of the Garden: Pour on us some water or some wherewith Allah hath provided you. They say: Lo! Allah hath forbidden both to disbelievers (in His guidance),
- Who took their religion for a sport and pastime, and whom the life of the world beguiled. So this day We have forgotten them even as they forgot the meeting of this their Day and as they used to deny Our tokens.
- Verily We have brought them a Scripture which We expounded with knowledge, a guidance and a mercy for a people who believe.
- Await they aught save the fulfilment thereof? On the day when the fulfilment thereof cometh, those who were before forgetful thereof will say: The messengers of our Lord did bring the Truth! Have we any intercessors, that they may intercede for us? Or can we be returned (to life on earth), that we may act otherwise than we used to act? They have lost their souls, and that which they devised hath failed them.
- Lo! your Lord is Allah Who created the heavens and the earth in six Days, then mounted He the Throne. He covereth the night with the day, which is in haste to follow it, and hath made the sun and the moon and the stars subservient by His command. His verily is all creation and commandment. Blessed be Allah, the Lord of the Worlds!
- ( O mankind! ) Call upon your Lord humbly and in secret. Lo! He loveth not aggressors.
- Work not confusion in the earth after the fair ordering (thereof). and call on Him in fear and hope. Lo! the mercy of Allah is nigh unto the good.
- And He it is Who sendeth the winds as tidings heralding His mercy, till, when they bear a cloud heavy (with rain), We lead it to a dead land, and then cause water to descend thereon and thereby bring forth fruits of every kind. Thus bring We forth the dead. Haply ye may remember.
- As for the good land, its vegetation cometh forth by permission of its Lord; while as for that which is bad, only the useless cometh forth (from it). Thus do We recount the tokens for people who give thanks.
- We sent Noah (of old) unto his people, and he said: O my people! Serve Allah. Ye have no other Allah save Him. Lo! I fear for you the retribution of an Awful Day.
- The chieftains of his people said: Lo! we see thee surely in plain error.
- He said: O my people! There is no error in me, but I am a messenger from the Lord of the Worlds.
- I convey unto you the messages of my Lord and give good counsel unto you, and know from Allah that which ye know not.
- Marvel ye that there should come unto you a Reminder from your Lord by means of a man among you, that he may warn you, and that ye may keep from evil, and that haply ye may find mercy.
- But they denied him, so We saved him and those with him in the ship, and We drowned those who denied Our tokens. Lo! they were blind folk.
- And unto (the tribe of) A’ad (We sent) their brother, Hud. He said: O my people! Serve Allah. Ye have no other Allah save Him. Will ye not ward off (evil)?
- The chieftains of his people, who were disbelieving, said: Lo! we surely see thee in foolishness, and lo! we deem thee of the liars.
- He said: O my people! There is no foolishness in me, but I am a messenger from the Lord of the Worlds.
- I convey unto you the messages of my Lord and am for you a true adviser.
- Marvel ye that there should come unto you a Reminder from your Lord by means of a man among you, that he may warn you? Remember how He made you viceroys after Noah’s folk, and gave you growth of stature. Remember (all) the bounties of your Lord, that haply ye may be successful.
- They said: Hast come unto us that we should serve Allah alone, and forsake what our fathers worshipped? Then bring upon us that wherewith thou threatenest us if thou art of the truthful!
- He said: Terror and wrath from your Lord have already fallen on you. Would ye wrangle with me over names which ye have named, ye and your fathers, for which no warrant from Allah hath been revealed? Then await (the consequence), lo! I (also) am of those awaiting (it).
- And We saved him and those with him by a mercy from Us, and We cut the root of those who denied Our revelations and were not believers.
- And to (the tribe of) Thamud (We sent) their brother Salih. He said: O my people! Serve Allah. Ye have no other Allah save Him. A wonder from your Lord hath come unto you. Lo! this is the camel of Allah, a token unto you; so let her feed in Allah’s earth, and touch her not with hurt lest painful torment seize you.
- And remember how He made you viceroys after A’ad and gave you station in the earth. Ye choose castles in the plains and hew the mountains into dwellings. So remember (all) the bounties of Allah and do not evil, making mischief in the earth.
- The chieftains of his people, who were scornful, said unto those whom they despised, unto such of them as believed: Know ye that Salih is one sent from his Lord? They said: Lo! In that wherewith he hath been sent we are believers.
- Those who were scornful said: Lo! in that which ye believe we are disbelievers.
- So they hamstrung the she-camel, and they flouted the commandment of their Lord, and they said: O Salih! Bring upon us that thou threatenest if thou art indeed of those sent (from Allah).
- So the earthquake seized them, and morning found them prostrate in their dwelling-place.
- And (Salih) turned from them and said: O my people! I delivered my Lord’s message unto you and gave you good advice, but ye love not good advisers.
- And Lot! (Remember) when he said unto his folk: Will ye commit abomination such as no creature ever did before you?
- Lo! ye come with lust unto men instead of women. Nay, but ye are wanton folk.
- And the answer of his people was only that they said (one to another): Turn them out of your township. They are folk, forsooth, who keep pure.
- And We rescued him and his household, save his wife, who was of those who stayed behind.
- And We rained a rain upon them. See now the nature of the consequence of evil-doers!
- And unto Midian (We sent) their brother, Shu’eyb. He said: O my people! Serve Allah. Ye have no other Allah save Him. Lo! a clear proof hath come unto you from your Lord; so give full measure and full weight and wrong not mankind in their goods, and work not confusion in the earth after the fair ordering thereof. That will be better for you, if ye are believers.
- Lurk not on every road to threaten (wayfarers), and to turn away from Allah’s path him who believeth in Him, and to seek to make it crooked. And remember, when ye were but few, how He did multiply you. And see the nature of the consequence for the corrupters!
- And if there is a party of you which believeth in that wherewith I have been sent, and there is a party which believeth not, then have patience until Allah judge between us. He is the Best of all who deal in judgment.
- The chieftains of his people, who were scornful, said: Surely we will drive thee out, O Shu’eyb, and those who believe with thee, from our township, unless ye return to our religion. He said: Even though we hate it?
- We should have invented a lie against Allah if we returned to your religion after Allah hath rescued us from it. It is not for us to return to it unless Allah our Lord should (so) will. Our Lord comprehendeth all things in knowledge. In Allah do we put our trust. Our Lord! Decide with truth between us and our folk, for Thou art the best of those who make decision.
- But the chieftains of his people, who were disbelieving, said: If ye follow Shu’eyb, then truly ye shall be the losers.
- So the earthquake seized them and morning found them prostrate in their dwelling-place.
- Those who denied Shu’eyb became as though they had not dwelt there. Those who denied Shu’eyb, they were the losers.
- So he turned from them and said: O my people! I delivered my Lord’s messages unto you and gave you good advice; then how can I sorrow for a people that rejected (truth)?
- And We sent no prophet unto any township but We did afflict its folk with tribulation and adversity that haply they might grow humble.
- Then changed We the evil plight for good till they grew affluent and said: Tribulation and distress did touch our fathers. Then We seized them unawares, when they perceived not.
- And if the people of the townships had believed and kept from evil, surely We should have opened for them blessings from the sky and from the earth. But (unto every messenger) they gave the lie, and so We seized them on account of what they used to earn.
- Are the people of the townships then secure from the coming of Our wrath upon them as a night-raid while they sleep?
- Or are the people of the townships then secure from the coming of Our wrath upon them in the daytime while they play?
- Are they then secure from Allah’s scheme? None deemeth himself secure from Allah’s scheme save folk that perish.
- Is it not an indication to those who inherit the land after its people (who thus reaped the consequence of evil-doing) that, if We will, We can smite them for their sins and print upon their hearts so that they hear not?
- Such were the townships. We relate some tidings of them unto thee (Muhammad). Their messengers verily came unto them with clear proofs (of Allah’s Sovereignty), but they could not believe because they had before denied. Thus doth Allah print upon the hearts of disbelievers (that they hear not).
- We found no (loyalty to any) covenant in most of them. Nay, most of them We found wrong-doers.
- Then, after them, We sent Moses with our tokens unto Pharaoh and his chiefs, but they repelled them. Now, see the nature of the consequence for the corrupters!
- Moses said: O Pharaoh! Lo! I am a messenger from the Lord of the Worlds,
- Approved upon condition that I speak concerning Allah nothing but the truth. I come unto you (lords of Egypt) with a clear proof from your Lord. So let the Children of Israel go with me.
- (Pharaoh) said: If thou comest with a token, then produce it, if thou art of those who speak the truth.
- Then he flung down his staff and lo! it was a serpent manifest;
- And he drew forth his hand (from his bosom), and lo! it was white for the beholders.
- The chiefs of Pharaoh’s people said: Lo! this is some knowing wizard,
- Who would expel you from your land. Now what do ye advise?
- They said (unto Pharaoh): Put him off (a while) – him and his brother – and send into the cities summoners,
- To bring each knowing wizard unto thee.
- And the wizards came to Pharaoh, saying: Surely there will be a reward for us if we are victors.
- He answered: Yes, and surely ye shall be of those brought near (to me).
- They said: O Moses! Either throw (first) or let us be the first throwers?
- He said: Throw! And when they threw they cast a spell upon the people’s eyes, and overawed them, and produced a mighty spell.
- And We inspired Moses (saying): Throw thy staff! And lo! it swallowed up their lying show.
- Thus was the Truth vindicated and that which they were doing was made vain.
- Thus were they there defeated and brought low.
- And the wizards fell down prostrate,
- Crying: We believe in the Lord of the Worlds,
- The Lord of Moses and Aaron.
- Pharaoh said: Ye believe in Him before I give you leave! Lo! this is the plot that ye have plotted in the city that ye may drive its people hence. But ye shall come to know!
- Surely I shall have your hands and feet cut off upon alternate sides. Then I shall crucify you every one.
- They said: Lo! We are about to return unto our Lord!
- Thou takest vengeance on us only forasmuch as we believed the tokens of our Lord when they came unto us. Our Lord! Vouchsafe unto us steadfastness and make us die as men who have surrendered (unto Thee).
- The chiefs of Pharaoh’s people said: ( O King), wilt thou suffer Moses and his people to make mischief in the land, and flout thee and thy gods? He said: We will slay their sons and spare their women, for lo! we are in power over them.
- And Moses said unto his people: Seek help in Allah and endure. Lo! the earth is Allah’s. He giveth it for an inheritance to whom He will. And lo! the sequel is for those who keep their duty (unto Him).
- They said: We suffered hurt before thou camest unto us, and since thou hast come unto us. He said: It may be that your Lord is going to destroy your adversary and make you viceroys in the earth, that He may see how ye behave.
- And we straitened Pharaoh’s folk with famine and dearth of fruits, that peradventure they might heed.
- But whenever good befell them, they said: This is ours; and whenever evil smote them they ascribed it to the evil auspices of Moses and those with him. Surely their evil auspice was only with Allah. But most of them knew not.
- And they said: Whatever portent thou bringest wherewith to bewitch us, we shall not put faith in thee.
- So We sent against them the flood and the locusts and the vermin and the frogs and the blood – a succession of clear signs. But they were arrogant and became a guilty folk.
- And when the terror fell on them they cried: O Moses! Pray for us unto thy Lord, because He hath a covenant with thee. If thou removest the terror from us we verily will trust thee and will let the Children of Israel go with thee.
- But when We did remove from them the terror for a term which they must reach, behold! they broke their covenant.
- Therefore We took retribution from them; therefore We drowned them in the sea: because they denied Our revelations and were heedless of them.
- And We caused the folk who were despised to inherit the eastern parts of the land and the western parts thereof which We had blessed. And the fair word of thy Lord was fulfilled for the Children of Israel because of their endurance; and We annihilated (all) that Pharaoh and his folk had done and that they had contrived.
- And We brought the Children of Israel across the sea, and they came unto a people who were given up to idols which they had. They said: O Moses! Make for us a god even as they have gods. He said: Lo! ye are a folk who know not.
- Lo! as for these, their way will be destroyed and all that they are doing is in vain.
- He said: Shall I seek for you a god other than Allah when He hath favoured you above (all) creatures?
- And (remember) when We did deliver you from Pharaoh’s folk who were afflicting you with dreadful torment, slaughtering your sons and sparing your women. That was a tremendous trial from your Lord.
- And when We did appoint for Moses thirty nights (of solitude), and added to them ten, and he completed the whole time appointed by his Lord of forty nights; and Moses said unto his brother, Aaron: Take my place among the people. Do right, and follow not the way of mischief-makers.
- And when Moses came to Our appointed tryst and his Lord had spoken unto him, he said: My Lord! Show me (Thy Self), that I may gaze upon Thee. He said: Thou wilt not see Me, but gaze upon the mountain! If it stand still in its place, then thou wilt see Me. And when his Lord revealed (His) glory to the mountain He sent it crashing down. And Moses fell down senseless. And when he woke he said: Glory unto Thee! I turn unto Thee repentant, and I am the first of (true) believers.
- He said: O Moses! I have preferred thee above mankind by My messages and by My speaking (unto thee). So hold that which I have given thee, and be among the thankful.
- And We wrote for him, upon the tablets, the lesson to be drawn from all things and the explanation of all things, then (bade him): Hold it fast; and command thy people (saying): Take the better (course made clear) therein. I shall show thee the abode of evil-livers.
- I shall turn away from My revelations those who magnify themselves wrongfully in the earth, and if they see each token believe it not, and if they see the way of righteousness choose it nor for (their) way, and if they see the way of error choose if for (their) way. That is because they deny Our revelations and are used to disregard them.
- Those who deny Our revelations and the meeting of the Hereafter, their works are fruitless. Are they requited aught save what they used to do?
- And the folk of Moses, after (he left them), chose a calf (for worship), (made) out of their ornaments, of saffron hue, which gave a lowing sound. Saw they not that it spake not unto them nor guided them to any way? They chose it, and became wrong-doers.
- And when they feared the consequences thereof and saw that they had gone astray, they said: Unless our Lord have mercy on us and forgive us, we verily are of the lost.
- And when Moses returned unto his people, angry and grieved, he said: Evil is that (course) which ye took after I had left you. Would ye hasten on the judgment of your Lord? And he cast down the tablets, and he seized his brother by the head, dragging him toward him. He said: Son of my mother! Lo! the folk did judge me weak and almost killed me. Oh, make not mine enemies to triumph over me and place me not among the evil-doers.
- He said: My Lord! Have mercy on me and on my brother; bring us into Thy mercy, Thou the Most Merciful of all who show mercy.
- Lo! Those who chose the calf (for worship), terror from their Lord and humiliation will come upon them in the life of the world. Thus do We requite those who invent a lie.
- But those who do ill-deeds and afterward repent and believe – lo! for them, afterward, Allah is Forgiving, Merciful.
- Then, when the anger of Moses abated, he took up the tablets, and in their inscription there was guidance and mercy for all those who fear their Lord.
- And Moses chose of his people seventy men for Our appointed tryst and, when the trembling came on them, he said: My Lord! If Thou hadst willed Thou hadst destroyed them long before, and me with them. Wilt thou destroy us for that which the ignorant among us did? It is but Thy trial (of us). Thou sendest whom Thou wilt astray and guidest whom Thou wilt: Thou art our Protecting Friend, therefore forgive us and have mercy on us, Thou, the Best of all who show forgiveness.
- And ordain for us in this world that which is good, and in the Hereafter (that which is good), Lo! We have turned unto Thee. He said: I smite with My punishment whom I will, and My mercy embraceth all things, therefore I shall ordain it for those who ward off (evil) and pay the poor-due, and those who believe Our revelations;
- Those who follow the messenger, the Prophet who can neither read nor write, whom they will find described in the Torah and the Gospel (which are) with them. He will enjoin on them that which is right and forbid them that which is wrong. He will make lawful for them all good things and prohibit for them only the foul; and he will relieve them of their burden and the fetters that they used to wear. Then those who believe in him, and honour him, and help him, and follow the light which is sent down with him: they are the successful.
- Say ( O Muhammad): O mankind! Lo! I am the messenger of Allah to you all – (the messenger of) Him unto Whom belongeth the Sovereignty of the heavens and the earth. There is no Allah save Him. He quickeneth and He giveth death. So believe in Allah and His messenger, the Prophet who can neither read nor write, who believeth in Allah and in His Words, and follow him that haply ye may be led aright.
- And of Moses’ folk there is a community who lead with truth and establish justice therewith.
- We divided them into twelve tribes, nations; and We inspired Moses, when his people asked him for water, saying: Smite with thy staff the rock! And there gushed forth therefrom twelve springs, so that each tribe knew their drinking-place. And we caused the white cloud to overshadow them and sent down for them the manna and the quails (saying): Eat of the good things wherewith we have provided you. They wronged Us not, but they were wont to wrong themselves.
- And when it was said unto them: Dwell in this township and eat therefrom whence ye will, and say “Repentance,” and enter the gate prostrate; We shall forgive you your sins; We shall increase (reward) for the right-doers.
- But those of them who did wrong changed the word which had been told them for another saying, and We sent down upon them wrath from heaven for their wrongdoing.
- Ask them ( O Muhammad) of the township that was by the sea, how they did break the Sabbath, how their big fish came unto them visibly upon their Sabbath day and on a day when they did not keep Sabbath came they not unto them. Thus did We try them for that they were evil-livers.
- And when a community among them said: Why preach ye to a folk whom Allah is about to destroy or punish with an awful doom, they said: In order to be free from guilt before your Lord, and that haply they may ward off (evil).
- And when they forgot that whereof they had been reminded, We rescued those who forbade wrong, and visited those who did wrong with dreadful punishment because they were evil-livers.
- So when they took pride in that which they had been forbidden, We said unto them: Be ye apes despised and loathed!
- And (remember) when thy Lord proclaimed that He would raise against them till the Day of Resurrection those who would lay on them a cruel torment. Lo! verily thy Lord is swift in prosecution and lo! verily He is Forgiving, Merciful.
- And We have sundered them in the earth as (separate) nations. Some of them are righteous, and some far from that. And We have tried them with good things and evil things that haply they might return.
- And a generation hath succeeded them who inherited the scriptures. They grasp the goods of this low life (as the price of evil-doing) and say: It will be forgiven us. And if there came to them (again) the offer of the like, they would accept it (and would sin again). Hath not the covenant of the Scripture been taken on their behalf that they should not speak aught concerning Allah save the truth? And they have studied that which is therein. And the abode of the Hereafter is better, for those who ward off (evil). Have ye then no sense?
- And as for those who make (men) keep the Scripture, and establish worship – lo! We squander not the wages of reformers.
- And when We shook the Mount above them as it were a covering, and they supposed that it was going to fall upon them (and We said): Hold fast that which We have given you, and remember that which is therein, that ye may ward off (evil).
- And (remember) when thy Lord brought forth from the Children of Adam, from their reins, their seed, and made them testify of themselves, (saying): Am I not your Lord? They said: Yea, verily. We testify. (That was) lest ye should say at the Day of Resurrection: Lo! of this we were unaware;
- Or lest ye should say: (It is) only (that) our fathers ascribed partners to Allah of old and we were (their) seed after them. Wilt Thou destroy us on account of that which those who follow falsehood did?
- Thus we detail the revelations, that haply they may return.
- Recite unto them the tale of him to whom We gave Our revelations, but he sloughed them off, so Satan overtook him and he became of those who lead astray.
- And had We willed We could have raised him by their means, but he clung to the earth and followed his own lust. Therefor his likeness is as the likeness of a dog: if thou attackest him he panteth with his tongue out, and if thou leavest him he panteth with his tongue out. Such is the likeness of the people who deny Our revelations. Narrate unto them the history (of the men of old), that haply they may take thought.
- Evil as an example are the folk who denied Our revelations, and were wont to wrong themselves.
- He whom Allah leadeth, he indeed is led aright, while he whom Allah sendeth astray – they indeed are losers.
- Already have We urged unto hell many of the jinn and humankind, having hearts wherewith they understand not, and having eyes wherewith they see not, and having ears wherewith they hear not. These are as the cattle – nay, but they are worse! These are the neglectful.
- Allah’s are the fairest names. Invoke Him by them. And leave the company of those who blaspheme His names. They will be requited what they do.
- And of those whom We created there is a nation who guide with the Truth and establish justice therewith.
- And those who deny Our revelations – step by step We lead them on from whence they know not.
- I give them rein (for) lo! My scheme is strong.
- Have they not bethought them (that) there is no madness in their comrade? He is but a plain warner
- Have they not considered the dominion of the heavens and the earth, and what things Allah hath created, and that it may be that their own term draweth nigh? In what fact after this will they believe?
- Those whom Allah sendeth astray, there is no guide for them. He leaveth them to wander blindly on in their contumacy.
- They ask thee of the (destined) Hour, when will it come to port. Say: Knowledge thereof is with my Lord only. He alone will manifest it at its proper time. It is heavy in the heavens and the earth. It cometh not to you save unawares. They question thee as if thou couldst be well informed thereof. Say: Knowledge thereof is with Allah only, but most of mankind know not.
- Say: For myself I have no power to benefit, nor power to hurt, save that which Allah willeth. Had I knowledge of the Unseen, I should have abundance of wealth, and adversity would not touch me. I am but a warner, and a bearer of good tidings unto folk who believe.
- He it is Who did create you from a single soul, and therefrom did make his mate that he might take rest in her. And when he covered her she bore a light burden, and she passed (unnoticed) with it, but when it became heavy they cried unto Allah, their Lord, saying: If thou givest unto us aright we shall be of the thankful.
- But when He gave unto them aright, they ascribed unto Him partners in respect of that which He had given them. High is He Exalted above all that they associate (with Him).
- Attribute they as partners to Allah those who created naught, but are themselves created,
- And cannot give them help, nor can they help themselves?
- And if ye call them to the Guidance, they follow you not. Whether ye call them or are silent is all one for you.
- Lo! those on whom ye call beside Allah are slaves like unto you. Call on them now, and let them answer you, if ye are truthful!
- Have they feet wherewith they walk, or have they hands wherewith they hold, or have they eyes wherewith they see, or have they ears wherewith they hear? Say: Call upon your (so-called) partners (of Allah), and then contrive against me, spare me not!
- Lo! my Protecting Friend is Allah Who revealeth the Scripture. He befriendeth the righteous.
- They on whom ye call beside Him have no power to help you, nor can they help you, nor can they help themselves.
- And if ye (Muslims) call them to the guidance they hear not; and thou (Muhammad) seest them looking toward thee, but they see not.
- Keep to forgiveness ( O Muhammad), and enjoin kindness, and turn away from the ignorant.
- And if a slander from the devil wound thee, then seek refuge in Allah. Lo! He is Hearer, Knower.
- Lo! those who ward off (evil), when a glamour from the devil troubleth them, they do but remember (Allah’s Guidance) and behold them seers!
- Their brethren plunge them further into error and cease not.
- And when thou bringest not a verse for them they say: Why hast thou not chosen it? Say: I follow only that which is inspired in me from my Lord. This (Qur’an) is insight from your Lord, and a guidance and a mercy for a people that believe.
- And when the Qur’an is recited, give ear to it and pay heed, that ye may obtain mercy.
- And do thou ( O Muhammad) remember thy Lord within thyself humbly and with awe, below thy breath, at morn and evening. And be not thou of the neglectful.
- Lo! those who are with thy Lord are not too proud to do Him service, but they praise Him and prostrate before Him.
[From Holy Quran Translation by Muhammad Marmaduke Pickthall]
كِتٰبٌ اُنْزِلَ اِلَيْكَ فَلَا يَكُنْ فِيْ صَدْرِكَ حَرَجٌ مِّنْهُ لِتُنْذِرَ بِهٖ وَذِكْرٰي لِلْمُؤْمِنِيْنَ
In the statement فَلَا يَكُن فِي صَدْرِكَ حَرَجٌ appearing in the first verse, the address is to the Holy Prophet . (رض) and he has been told: This Qur’an is the Book of Allah sent down to you. This should not cause any constraint on your heart. The word: حَرَج (haraj) translated here as ` constraint’ means that ` you should have no anguish or apprehension in conveying the Qur’an and its injunctions lest people belie it and hurt you.’ (As reported from Abu Al-` Aliyah – Mazhari)
The hint given here is that Allah who has sent down this Book on you has also made arrangements that you shall remain protected and that takes care of any anguish on your part. Some commentators have said that ` haraj’ or ` constraint on the heart’ refers to the constraint ex¬perienced by the Holy Prophet (رض) who, because of his affec¬tionate concern for people, felt pain when they would not believe despite having heard the Qur’an and its injunctions. To offset this constraint, the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) has been told that the duty with which he has been obligated is simply to make the call and con¬vey the message. Once this is done, it is not his responsibility to see who becomes a Muslim and who does not. Therefore, there was no rea¬son for him to be anxious.
فَلَنَسْــــَٔـلَنَّ الَّذِيْنَ اُرْسِلَ اِلَيْهِمْ وَلَنَسْــــَٔـلَنَّ الْمُرْسَلِيْنَ
The statement: فَلَنَسْأَلَنَّ الَّذِينَ أُرْسِلَ إِلَيْهِمْ وَلَنَسْأَلَنَّ الْمُرْسَلِينَ ﴿٦﴾ in verse 6 refers to the day of Qiyamah when people will be asked by Allah how did they re¬ceive the messengers and Books sent to them by Him – and the mes¬sengers will be asked if they did convey to their communities the mes¬sage and injunctions Allah had sent them with. (Narrated by Baihaqi from Sayyidna Ibn ` Abbas (رض) – Mazhari)
It appears in Sahib Muslim on the authority of a narration from Sayyidna Jabir (رض) that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) asked peo¬ple during the address of his Last Hajj: When, on the day of Qiyamah, you will be asked about me – whether or not I have conveyed the mes¬sage of Allah to you – what will you, then, say in reply? (فَمَا انتم قَائِلُونَ ). All Sahabah present there said: We will say that you have conveyed the message of Allah to us and you have fulfilled the trust of Allah at its best and you have wished and done what was most beneficial for the community. Hearing this, the Holy Prophet صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم said: اَشھَدُاَللَّھُمَّ Allah, You be witness).
According to a narration in the Musnad of Ahmad, the Holy Proph¬et (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) is reported to have said: On the day of Qiyamah, Allah Ta’ala will ask me if I have conveyed His message to His servants and I shall say in response: Yes, I have. Therefore, all of you should make sure that those who are present do convey my message to those ab¬sent. (Mazhari)
` Those absent’ refers to people who were present during that time but were not present at that particular occasion – as well as genera¬tions which would come later on. To convey to them the message of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) means that people of every time should con¬tinue the chain of conveying this message to the generations coming next, so that all children of Adam to be born right through the day of Qiyamah will have received this message.
وَالْوَزْنُ يَوْمَىِٕذِۨ الْحَقُّ ۚ فَمَنْ ثَقُلَتْ مَوَازِيْنُهٗ فَاُولٰۗىِٕكَ هُمُ الْمُفْلِحُوْنَ
In the first verse, it was said: وَالْوَزْنُ يَوْمَئِذٍ الْحَقُّ ` (And the Weighing on that day is definite). It means that the weighing of good and bad deeds on the day of Judgment is due and true. There is no room for doubt in it. Here, the hint given is that let no one be deceived by the idea that things which usually get to be weighed or measured are things having some weight or heaviness. Human deeds, good or bad, have no body or mass which could be weighed. How, then, would deeds be weighed? First of all, the reason is that the authority of Allah is absolute. He is powerful over everything. Why then, would it be necessary that something we cannot weigh could not be weighed by Allah Almighty as well? Then, other than that, we have before us, in our time, countless new instruments which claim to weigh or measure anything in the world. They no more need the traditional balance or scales or rod or tip. Modern instruments can weigh what nobody ever thought could be weighed, air, electric current, heat, cold, and so many other things.
A meter is all you need. Now, if Allah Almighty, the Maker of makers, in His perfect power, could weigh or measure human deeds – with or without a device – what is there in it which would make it to be something far out to believe? Leaving this aside for a moment, the Creator of the Universe does have the power to transform our deeds at some time into a material presence, even give it some shape or form (interesting that people would believe something like this happening in a Speilberg movie, yet squirm at the religious view of things as would come to pass). There are many Ahadith from the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) ` which confirm that human deeds will appear in particular shapes and forms during Barzakh (the post-death – pre-resurrection state) and Mahshar (Resurrection). Good deeds of a person will, in forms beautified, become the companions of the grave – and evil deeds would crawl all over in the form of snakes and scorpions. A Hadith says that a person who has not paid the Zakah due against his wealth, that wealth will reach his grave in the shape of a poisonous snake to bite him and say: I am your wealth, I am your treasure.
It is said in a Sahih Hadith that Al-Baqarah and ‘Al-` Imran, the two Surahs of the Holy Qur’an will come on the plains of Resurrection in the form of two dense clouds and cast their shade over those who used to recite these Surahs.
Similarly, there are countless narrations from Hadith, all authentic and reported reliably, which indicate that once these good and bad deeds of ours pass away from this mortal world, they will transform into particular shapes and forms and be there on the plains of Resur¬rection in a material presence.
There are even verses of the Qur’an which confirm it. It is said: وَوَجَدُوا مَا عَمِلُوا حَاضِرًا ، that is, ` what people had done in the world, they would find that present there – 18:49.’ In a verse of Surah Az-Zalzalah, it is said: مَن يَعْمَلْ مِثْقَالَ ذَرَّةٍ خَيْرًا يَرَهُ ﴿٧﴾ وَمَن يَعْمَلْ مِثْقَالَ ذَرَّةٍ شَرًّا يَرَهُ that is, ` whoever does good even the weight of a particle shall see it on the day of Qiyamah, and whoever does evil even the weight of a particle shall see that too in Qiyamah.’ Things as described here obviously lend to the possibility that human deeds will come in some nuclear form of existence. This is something which needs no further interpretations as what is crucial is the compensation of deeds which will exist and be perceptible.
Under these circumstances, weighing deeds does not remain something difficult or far out. But, human beings are what they are. Given their limited framework of reasoning, they take everything on the analogy of their own present state of being and this is the criterion they have to judge things around them. So used to it they are that they just cannot act otherwise. It is this state of being of theirs which the Qur’an has put in words which appear in Surah Ar-Rum: يَعْلَمُونَ ظَاهِرًا مِّنَ الْحَيَاةِ الدُّنْيَا وَهُمْ عَنِ الْآخِرَةِ هُمْ غَافِلُونَ ﴿٧﴾. It means that ` these people know an obvious aspect of mortal life (and that too, not the whole of it) and about the Hereafter they are totally heedless – 30:7.’ In their onslaught on the ob¬vious and the perceptible, they will shake the earth and the space to find out the unfound, but the great field of the reality of things the unfolding of which has to take place in the ‘Akhirah is something they are totally unaware of
Therefore, in this verse, special care has been taken while saying: وَالْوَزْنُ يَوْمَئِذٍ الْحَقُّ (And the Weighing on that day is definite) so that man, all infatuated with the obvious, may not be able to deny the weighing of deeds in the Hereafter – which stands proved from the Holy Qur’an and is the collective belief of the Muslim Ummah.
That there will be the weighing of deeds on the day of Qiyamah is a subject dealt with in many verses of the Holy Qur’an from various an¬gles, and in Hadith, its details abound.
The Weighing of Deeds: A Doubt and its Answer
Out of the details on the weighing of deeds appearing in the Aha¬dith of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) the first to ponder about is the oft-narrated statement that, on the day of Resurrection, the heaviest in weight shall be the Kalimah: لا إلہ إلا اللہ محمد الرسول اللہ (There is no god but Allah, Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah). The scale-pan which holds this Kalimah shall outweigh the rest.
Tirmidhi, Ibn Majah, Ibn Hibban, Baihaqi and Hakim have reported from Sayyidna ` Abdullah ibn ` Umar (رض) that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said: A man of my Ummah will be brought before the entire creation on the plain of Resurrection. Then, ninety nine of his Books of Deeds will be brought in. Each scroll of his Book of Deeds will be as long as far he could see – and all these Books of Deeds shall be full of sins and evils. This person will be asked if everything written in these Books of Deeds was correct, or had the angels done any injustice to him, or had they written anything there which was not as it hap-pened.
He will admit: 0 my Lord, whatever is written there is correct. But, in his heart, he will be nervous while worrying about how would he find his deliverance from this situation. That will be the time Allah Ta` ala will say: Today, there is no injustice for anyone. Against all your sins, We have a testimonial of your being good, with Us, written where, is your Kalimah: لا إلہ إلا اللہ محمد الرسول اللہ (I testify that there is no god but Allah and I testify that Muhammad is His ser¬vant and His Messenger). That person will say: 0 my Lord, what weight this little note will carry against such a big black Book of Deeds? Then, it would be said: No injustice will be done to you. Then, all those Books of Deeds full of sins will be placed in one scale-pan and in the other, this note with the Kalimah of ‘Iman on it. The scale-pan with the Kalimah on it shall weigh heavier and the scale-pan with all those sins on it shall turn to be lighter. After having related this event, the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said: Nothing can weigh more than the name of Allah. (Mazhari)
According to a narration from Sayyidna Ibn ` Umar (رض) in Musnad al-Bazzar and Mustadrak Hakim, the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said: At the time of his death, Nuh (عليه السلام) (La¬ ila-ha illallah) لا إلہ إلا اللہ because, should the heavens and the earth be placed in one pan of the scale and the Kalimah: لا إلہ إلا اللہ La Ilaha Illallah in the other, the pan containing the Kalimah shall invariably remain heavier. Oth¬er narrations on the same subject have been reported from Sayyidna Abu Said al-Khudri, Sayyidna Ibn ` Abbas and Sayyidna Abu-ad-Darda’ (رض) supported by reliable transmitting authorities and are spread over in various Hadith collections. (Mazhari)
According to these narrations, a believing Muslim who recites the Kalimah shall always find the scale heavier in his favour, no matter how many sins he carries on him. But, many other verses of the Qur’an and narrations of Ahadith prove that the good and bad deeds of a Muslim shall be weighed. For some, the scale-pan with good deeds will be heavier, for some others, that of sins. The one whose scale-pan with good deeds is heavier will have his salvation while the one whose scale-pan with sins and evils is heavier will have his punishment. For example, in Surah Al-Anbiya’ it is said:
وَنَضَعُ الْمَوَازِينَ الْقِسْطَ لِيَوْمِ الْقِيَامَةِ فَلَا تُظْلَمُ نَفْسٌ شَيْئًا ۖ وَإِن كَانَ مِثْقَالَ حَبَّةٍ مِّنْ خَرْدَلٍ أَتَيْنَا بِهَا ۗ وَكَفَىٰ بِنَا حَاسِبِينَ ﴿47﴾
And We shall set up Scales of Justice on the day of Judgment. Then, not the least injustice will be done to anyone. And if there be (good or bad) the weight of a mustard seed, We shall bring it (to account on the scale for deeds) and We are sufficient to take account – 21:47.
And in Surah Al-Qari` ah, it is said:
فَأَمَّا مَن ثَقُلَتْ مَوَازِينُهُ ﴿6﴾ فَهُوَ فِي عِيشَةٍ رَّاضِيَةٍ ﴿7﴾ وَأَمَّا مَنْ خَفَّتْ مَوَازِينُهُ ﴿8﴾ فَأُمُّهُ هَاوِيَةٌ
Whoever has his scale of good deeds heavy will be in life bliss¬ful and whoever has his scale of good deeds lighter, his place will be Hell -101:6-9.
Explaining these verses, Sayyidna ` Abdullah ibn ` Abbas (رض) ، said: The believer whose good deeds on the scale are heavier will go to Jannah with his deeds – and the one whose evil deeds on the scale are heavier will be sent to Jahannam with his deeds. (Reported by Al-Baihaqi in Shu’ab al-‘Iman – Mahari)
Based on a narration from Sayyidna Abu Hurairah (رض) it has been reported in Abu Dawud: If a shortage is found in the Fara’id of a servant, Allah Ta` ala will ask if that servant has some Nawafil to his credit. If they are there, the shortage of the obligatory will be compensated by the voluntary. (Mazhari)
The outcome of all these verses and Hadith narrations is that the scale will sometimes be heavier in favour of a believer and lighter at some others. Therefore, scholars of Tafsir say that this shows that weighing in Mahshar (Resurrection) will be twice. First to be weighed will be belief and disbelief through which distinction will be made be¬tween a believer and a disbeliever. In this weighing whoever has even just the declaration of faith (Kalimah) in the Book of Deeds, his or her scale will become heavier and he or she will be separated from the group of disbelievers. Then, there will be a second weighing of good and bad deeds. In this, the good deeds of one believer will be heavy on the scale while the other will find the scale heavy with evil deeds – and everyone will have his or her punishment or reward in accordance with that. Thus, the subject as dealt with in all these verses and nar¬rations of Hadith becomes synchronized. (Bayan a1-Qur’an)
How Would Deeds Be Weighed?
According to a Hadith narrated by Sayyidna Abu Hurairah رضی اللہ تعالیٰ عنہ which appears in Al-Bukhari and Muslim, the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said: On the day of Qiyamah, there will come some heavy people whose weight, in the sight of Allah, will not be worth the weight of even a mosquito – and, in support, he recited the verse of the Qur’an:
نُقِيمُ لَهُمْ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ وَزْنًا
that is, on the day of Qiyamah, We will not give them any weight – 18:105 (Mazhari).
And featuring the virtues (manaqib) of Sayyidna ` Abdullah ibn Masud (رض) there is a Hadith in which the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) is reported to have said: His legs look so thin but, by Him in whose hands lies my life, on the balance of justice for the day of Qiyamah, their weight shall be more than the weight of the mountain of Uhud.
Then, there is the Hadith of Sayyidna Abu Hurairah (رض) with which Imam al-Bukhari has concluded his book, the Sahih. In it, it is said that there are two words very light when said but very heavy when weighed on the Scale of Deeds, and with Allah, they are dear, and they are: سُبحَانَ اللہِ وَبِحَمدِہِ (Subbanallahi wa bi-hamdihi : Pure is Allah and Praised is He سُبحَانَ اللہِ اَلعَطِیم Subhanallahil-Azim : Pure is Allah the Great).
As narrated by Sayyidna ` Abdullah ibn ` Umar (رض) عنہما the Holy Prophet صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم used to say that saying: سُبحَانَ اللہِ (Subhan Allah) fills half of the pan on the scale of deeds while saying: اَلحَمدُ للہ ، (Alhamdulillah) fills the other half.
Abu Dawud, Tirmidhi and Ibn Hibban report with sound authority from Sayyidna Abu۔ ا d Darda’ (رض) that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said: No deed will be heavier than good morals on the scale of deeds.
And to Sayyidna Abu Dharr al-Ghifari (رض) the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said: I tell you about two things doing which is not hard for anyone – but, on the scale of deeds, they shall be the heaviest -(1) good morals, and (2) usually observing silence, that is, not talking un¬less necessary.
In his Kitab al-Zuhd, Imam Ahmad (رح) has reported from Sayyidna Hazim (رض) ، that angel, Jibra’il al-Amin (عليه السلام) came to the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) while someone there was weeping in fear of Allah. Angel Jibra’il (عليه السلام) said: All human deeds will be weighed, but human tears flow¬ing from the fear of Allah and ‘Akhirah is a deed which would not be weighed. Rather, one such tear would put off the wildest fire of Jahan¬nam. (Mazhari)
A Hadith says about a person present on the plain of Resurrection. When he will look at his Book of Deeds, he will notice very few good deeds there. He will be nervous. All of a sudden, something will rise like a cloud and fall right into the scale-pan of his good deeds. He will be told that this was in return for his teaching of the faith which multiplied onwards when people acted in accordance with it, and there was a share kept aside for him with each single follower of his teaching. (Mazhari, from Sayyidna Ibn al-Mubarak)
Tabarani reports from Sayyidna Ibn ` Abbas (رض) that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said: A person who goes to the graveyard with the Janazah, two karats will be placed on his scale of deeds. Other narrations say that the weight of this karat will be equal to the mountain of Uhud.
He has also reported from Sayyidna Jabir (رض) that the Holy Prophet صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم said: One’s first deed to be placed on the scale of deeds will be the good deed of spending on one’s family and taking care of their needs.
Imam al-Dhahabi has reported from Sayyidna ` Imran ibn Husayn (رح) ، that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said: On the day of Qiya¬mah, when the ink used by the ` Ulama to write about the religion and its rules will be weighed against the blood of shuhada’ (martyrs), the weight of the ink used by ` Ulama will turn out to be more than the weight of the blood of martyrs.
There are many more Ahadith relating to the weighing of deeds as in Qiya.mah. Some of them have been mentioned here as they shed light on the merit and worth of particular deeds.
The mode of weighing deeds as mentioned in these narrations of Hadith seems to be different. Some indicate that the doers of deeds will be the ones weighed and it will be they who would be heavy or light according to their deeds. Some others show that their Books of Deeds will be weighed. Still others prove that deeds themselves would become personified and they will be measured. Tafsir authority, Ibn Kathir, after having reported all these narrations, has said that it is possible that the weighing is repeated several times in different ways and, it is obvious, the full reality of these matters is known to Allah Ta` ala alone – and for doing what one does in real life, it is, for all prac¬tical purposes, not necessary to know this reality. Quite sufficient for us is to know that our deeds shall be weighed. If our deeds turn out to be lighter on the scale of deeds, we shall deserve punishment. Then, it is an entirely different matter that Allah Ta` ala, in His grace, by Him-self, or by the intercession of a Nabiyy or Waliyy, forgives us our sins and we stand delivered from punishment. As for the likelihood that some people will have their salvation on the sole virtue of their having said and believed in the Kalimah of ‘Iman (La Ilaha Illallah) and all sins accruing to them will be forgiven because of that – as narrated in some of these narrations – that belongs to the exception mentioned above and which is beyond the general reg¬ulation and is a special manifestation of the grace and mercy of Allah Ta` ala.
In the two verses the Tafsir of which you have just read through, sinners were warned against the disgrace on the plain of Resurrection and the Divine punishment that would come in its wake. Then comes the third verse which mentions the blessings of Allah Ta` ala and persuades people to accept truth and act accordingly by suggesting that Allah has bestowed on them full ownership and control on the earth and has opened thousands of avenues of comfort for them. It is as if the Master of the Universe has made this whole earth and what it con¬tains a giant warehouse of human needs and comforts, a most compre-hensive inventory of that inside it. Now, what is left for human beings to do is to learn to go in there, take out what they need and use it how they will. Science and technology are essentially no more than a trained method of taking out things created by the Master of the Uni¬verse and stored in this warehouse, properly and nicely, and use it soundly and beneficially. One who is short on sense and manners and does not know how to take things out from this warehouse, or does not understand how to use what he has taken out, he remains deprived of their benefits. An intelligent person benefits from both.
In short, Allah Ta` ala has placed all that human beings need on and in this earth which demands that they should be grateful to Him all the time under all conditions. But, human beings are prone to heedlessness. They would not take much time to forget the favours of their Creator and Master – only to return to the same world of things. So, at the end of the verse, it is in a mode of complaint that it was said: قَلِيلًا مَّا تَشْكُرُونَ (Little you are receptive to advice).
قَالَ مَا مَنَعَكَ اَلَّا تَسْجُدَ اِذْ اَمَرْتُكَ ۭ قَالَ اَنَا خَيْرٌ مِّنْهُ ۚ خَلَقْتَنِيْ مِنْ نَّارٍ وَّخَلَقْتَهٗ مِنْ طِيْنٍ
The event relating to Sayyidna ‘Adam (عليه السلام) and the Shaytan has appeared earlier in Section four of Surah Al-Baqarah (Ma` ariful-Qur’an, English Translation, under verse 34). Some aspects of the subject have been covered in comments given there. Answers to some others are being given here.
How Long was the Respite given to Iblis?
It was exactly at the time Iblis was under the wrath of Allah, he made a prayer, a strange prayer indeed. He asked for a lease of life un¬til the day of Resurrection. The words in which Allah Ta` ala answered the prayer, as they appear in this verse, are no more than: إِنَّكَ مِنَ الْمُنظَرِينَ (Respite is given to you). From these words, given the nature of the question and the answer, it can be understood that this respite was given until the Resurrection as asked by him. But, what is not stated in this verse clearly is whether the giving of respite mentioned here is until the Resurrection as asked by Iblis, or is for some other duration. But, in another verse, the words: إِلَىٰ يَوْمِ الْوَقْتِ الْمَعْلُومِ ﴿٣٨﴾ (Till the day of the ap¬pointed time – 15:38) appear at this place which, on the surface, seem to suggest that the respite till the day of Qiyamah as asked by Iblis was not given. Instead, given to him was a respite till a particular time which is preserved in Divine knowledge. The outcome is that the prayer of Iblis was answered – though not completely. He was given respite till a particular time and not till the day of Resurrection or Qiyamah.
Reported in Tafsir Ibn Jarir is a narration from Suddiy which supports this view. The exact words of the report are:
فلم ينظره إلى يوم البعث، ولكن أنظره إلى يوم الوقت المعلوم، وهو يوم ينفخ في الصور النفخة الأولى، فصعق مَنْ في السموات ومَنْ في الأرض، فمات. تفسير الطبري = جامع البيان ت شاكر (12/ 332)
Allah Ta` ala did not give respite to Iblis till the day of Resur¬rection, instead, He has given him respite till a day the time of which is appointed and that is the day when the Horn will be blown the first time and whoever there is in the heavens or the earth shall be stunned, and dead.
In summation, we can say that the Shaytan had actually asked for a respite in his prayer till the time when the second Horn will be blown and all the dead will be resurrected. This is what is called: یوم البعث (Yowm al-Ba’ th). If this prayer was answered as asked, it would have meant that Iblis was to be alive as based on his prayer while the facts on the ground would have been different: That would be a time when nothing will be alive except the One Being of the Eternally-Alive and the Self-Sustaining Hayy and Qaiyyum and that would be the time when the great promise of: كُلُّ مَنْ عَلَيْهَا فَانٍ ﴿٢٦﴾ وَيَبْقَىٰ وَجْهُ رَبِّكَ ذُو الْجَلَالِ وَالْإِكْرَامِ ﴿٢٧﴾ (All that is on it will perish and to remain there shall be the Face of your Lord, full of majesty, bounty and honour – 55:26-27) will stand im¬mensely manifested. On that basis, Iblis was not to live to see that time. Therefore, his one prayer for respite till the Yowm al-Ba’ th was not granted, instead of which, the time of the respite was changed to Yowma yunfakhu fi as-sur, till the day blown is the Horn, and granted at that. The effect would be that death shall be the order of the day for the whole creation. Iblis will have his death as well. When all others are resurrected, he too shall stand resurrected.
These details remove the possible doubt that could arise from the verse: كُلُّ مَنْ عَلَيْهَا فَانٍ ﴿٢٦﴾ (All that is on it will perish -55:26) referred immedi¬ately above specially in relation with this prayer. The apparent contra-diction between the two thus stands resolved.
The substance of this investigation is that Yowm al-Ba’th and Yowm al-Waqt al-Ma’lum are two separate days. Iblis had asked for respite till the Yowm al-Ba’ th. This was not granted wholly. Instead of that, a change was made and respite was given till the Yowm al-Waqt al-Ma’lum. Hadrat Maulana Ashraf ` Ali Thanavi (رح) ، in Bayan al-Qur’an, has preferred the view that these two are really two separate days. In fact, from the time of the blowing of the first Horn upto the entry into Paradise or Hell, it will be a long day with different things happening at different times in it. Based on these different happenings, that day could be attributed to every event which takes place therein. For instance, it could be called the day of the blowing of the Horn (صُور) and the day of perishing (فَنَا), as well as, the day of Resurrection (بعث) and the day of .Recompense (جزَا). This helps resolves all doubts and difficul¬ties فَللہِ الحَمد .
Can the Prayer of a Disbeliever be Acceptable?
The question comes from the verse: وَمَا دُعَاءُ الْكَافِرِينَ إِلَّا فِي ضَلَالٍ (And the prayer of disbelievers is but in vain – 13:14), it is usually taken that the prayer made by a disbeliever is not answered. But, from this event concerning Iblis and the statement in the verse, this difficulty becomes obvious. The answer is that, in this mortal world, even the prayer of a disbeliever can be answered – so much so, that even the prayer of the foremost disbeliever, Iblis, was answered. But, in the Hereafter, the prayer of a disbeliever will not be answered. The verse quoted above relates to the Hereafter (‘Akhirah). It has nothing to do with this mor¬tal world.
The Event of ‘Adam and Iblis: The Rationale of Different Words
This story appears in the Holy Qur’an at several places. The words used in relevant questions and answers differ everywhere, though the event is the same. The reason is that the subject remains the same when the main event is described. That the words remain exactly the same everywhere is not necessary. A narration could be based on meaning too. If the unity of subject and sense exists, variations in words do not deserve consideration.
What made Iblis speak the way he did before Allah?
The place where Iblis dared to speak was in the Most August con¬ceivable Presence of the Master of all Honour where the awe and ma¬jesty of the occasion would not allow even angels and prophets and messengers to breathe. How did he do that? ` Ulama say that this was a somber and highly cutting manifestation of the Divine wrath that, because of the rejection of Iblis, his view was so obstructed (hijab) that he became blind to the grandeur and awe of Allah Ta` ala and irreverence came down to settle on him all over. (Abridged from Bayern al-Qur’an)
The Assault of Shaytan is Multi-Dimensional, not simply Four-Sided
In the present verse (17), Iblis is said to have identified four sides from which he planned to mislead the children of ‘Adam, that is, the front, the rear and the right and the left. But, the purpose here is not to set up any limits. Instead, the sense is that this will be from all sides and directions. Therefore, the probability of his leading people astray from above and beneath the feet does not contradict it. Similar¬ly, the saying of the Hadith that – Shaytan can enter the human body and move through the arteries and veins of blood and take command of the whole body – is also not contradictory to this.
In the cited verses (13 & 18), the Shaytan has been commanded to leave the heavens twice. First, when it was said: فَاخْرُجْ إِنَّكَ مِنَ الصَّاغِرِينَ (So, go. You are of the low.) and then, when it was said: فَاخْرُجْ إِنَّكَ مِنَ الصَّاغِرِينَ (Get out of here, condemned …). Here, the first saying is perhaps a proposal while the other is its implementation. (Abridged from Bayan a1-Qur’an)
يٰبَنِيْٓ اٰدَمَ قَدْ اَنْزَلْنَا عَلَيْكُمْ لِبَاسًا يُّوَارِيْ سَوْاٰتِكُمْ وَرِيْشًا ۭوَلِبَاسُ التَّقْوٰى ۙ ذٰلِكَ خَيْرٌ ۭذٰلِكَ مِنْ اٰيٰتِ اللّٰهِ لَعَلَّهُمْ يَذَّكَّرُوْنَ
Mentioned in almost a section preceding the verses cited above was the event relating to Sayyidna ‘Adam and Satan, the accursed. The first outcome of the satanic instigation was that the heavenly apparel of ‘Adam and Hawwa came off leaving them coverless as a re-suit of which they began hiding their coverable body with leaves.
In the first of the present verses (26), Allah Ta` ala has addressed all children of ‘Adam and told them that the dress they wear is a great blessing the worth and value of which must be recognized by them. The address here is not to Muslims alone. It is to all children of Adam. This is a sharp pointer to the fact that the act of covering the coverable parts of the body and the wearing of dress is both a human need and a natural desire. Everyone abides by it without any distinction of relig¬ion or community. Then, giving its details, three kinds of clothings were mentioned.
First of all, it was said: لِبَاسًا يُوَارِي سَوْآتِكُمْ (clothing that covers your shame). Here, the word: يُوَارِي (yuwari) is a derivation from: مُوَارَات (muwarat) which means to cover, hide or conceal. And the word: سَواٰۃ (sau’at) is the plural form of: سَوۃُ (sau’ah). This is applied to body parts the uncovering of which is taken, by nature, as bad and shameful by all human beings. The sense of the statement is that Allah has sent down for people dress with which they could cover their body parts the exposing of which is a matter of shame.
After that, it was said: رِيشًا (wa risha). The dress one uses for adornment and decency is called: رَیُش (Rish). The meaning is that just to cover up the cover-worthy body parts, even a simple set of clothing is enough. But, Allah has provided for you much more than simply cloth¬ing, He blessed you with dresses which make you look handsome, or decent, neat and civilized.
At this place, the word used by the Holy Qur’an is: اَنزَلنَا (anzalna: We have sent down). It means to bestow or bless with. It is not necessary that it be sent down from the heavens ready to wear. This is like an-other expression: اَنزَلنَا حدِید (57:25). It means: ` We sent down the iron,’ which is dug out of the earth as everyone can see. However, at both these places, by saying: اَنزَلنَا (anzalna : We have sent down), it was indi¬cated that the way no human planning or artifice operates as active agent in what ` descends from the heavens,’ so it is with the essential mother element of dress, cotton or wool etc., where human ingenuity has no role to play. That is simply a gift from the great creative power of Allah Ta` ala. But, human artifice does work in efforts to make out of these materials dresses to individual taste, temperament, and the need to stay safe against heat or chill. Even the way to that artifice is shown by Allah Ta` ala. Therefore, eyes that see reality see all this as nothing but Divine gift sent from the heavens.
Two Uses of Dress
Identified here are two uses of dress: (1) To cover the cover-worthy parts of the body سَتَر (satr), and (2) protection from hot and cold weather, and decor of the body. The first use has been placed first which indi¬cates that the real purpose of human dress is to be able to cover the cover-worthy parts of the body سَتَر اَلعَورَہ (satr al-‘awrah). This also happens to be its line of demarcation from animals. The dress given to animals has been naturally made a part of their body. The purpose it serves is ei¬ther to protect from hot and cold weather, or beautify them. No elabo¬rate arrangements have been made to cover up their سَتَر satr. Neverthe¬less, formations of particular body parts in their bodies have been so placed that they do not remain totally exposed. Some would have a screen of a tail and many others would have other obstructers of view.
After having related the event concerning ‘Adam and Hawwa’ (‘Adam and Eve) and how the Satan had instigated them, this mention of dress indicates that for human beings to be naked, or the exposure of their shame before others is a sign of abject disgrace and indecency at its worst. Moreover, it is an antecedent to all sorts of evils and dis¬orders.
The Modern Obsession for Nudity: The Tempter of ‘Adam and Eve still Stalks
So, the first attack of Satan came from this opening against human beings when their dress dropped off from where it belonged. Even today, when Satan wishes to confuse and waylay human beings through his accomplices, it always picks up a chic front like being trendy, hip, hot or cool and ends up pulling people out from homes into streets and alleys naked or just about. It would seem that what Satan has classi¬fied as modern advancement does not happen unless women are de¬prived of their sense of shame and modesty and made to parade around in the near-nude.
After ‘Iman, the First Duty is to Cover your Body Properly
When Shaytan, sensing this weakness in human beings, made the first assault on their body cover, the Shari’ah of Islam acted smartly as it is responsible for the inculcation, protection and flowering of eve¬ry good in its people that it took the issue so seriously that it enjoined the covering of human body as the first duty after ‘Iman or faith. The Salah, the Sawm, and duties like those come after that.
Sayyidna Faruq al-A` zam (رض) says that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said: When someone wears a new dress, he should recite the following Du` a while wearing it:
اَلحَمدُ للہِ الَّذِی کَسَانِي مَا اُوَارِي بِه عَورَتِي وَأَتَجَمَّلُ بِهِ في حَیَاتِي
Praise be to Allah who gave me clothes with which I am to cover the cover-worthy parts of my body and look handsome with it in my life.
The Great Reward of Giving the Old Dress as Sadaqah after Wearing the New One
He also said: If a person who wears a new dress and gives away the old one as Sadaqah (charity) to anyone poor and needy, he comes un¬der the protection and patronage of Allah Ta` ala in all states of his life and death. (Ibn Kathir from the Musnad of Ahmad)
In this Hadith too, one is reminded of the two considerations in wearing a dress which is why Allah Ta` ala has created the human dress.
Covering of Body is Natural and the Theory of Evolution is False
The event of Sayyidna ‘Adam (عليه السلام) and the statement of the Qur’an make it clear that covering the body and using a dress is a natural desire and an inborn necessity of human beings which has been with them since the very beginning. Those who profess that the first man went around naked and it was only after having passed through stages of evolution that he invented the dress, they are patently false.
The Ultimate Dress
After having identified the dress of two kinds, that which covers the body properly and that which gives comfort and beauty, a third kind of dress was mentioned by saying: وَلِبَاسُ التَّقْوَىٰ ذَٰلِكَ خَيْرٌ (And the dress of Taqwa [ fear of Allah ]! that is the best). In some readings (Qira’at) of the Qur’an, the word: لِبَاس (libas: dress) has been rendered with a fathah on the letter: سِین (sin) as: وَلِبَاسُ التَّقْوَىٰ. Thus, read with: اَنزَلنَا (anzalna), it will mean: We have sent down a third dress of Taqwa. But, in accordance with the well-known reading of it, it means that everyone knows the two dresses mentioned, however, there is a third kind of dress, that of Taqwa – and that is the best of all dresses. The dress of Taqwa, as ex plained by Sayyidna Ibn ` Abbas and ` Urwah ibn Zubayr (رض) means right conduct, good deed and fear of Allah. (Ruh a1-Ma’ani)
The sense is that the way the visible physical dress of human be¬ings serves the purpose of covering the cover-worthy parts of the body, protecting from hot and cold weather and giving beauty and embellish¬ment – very similarly, there is a spiritual dress, that of right and be-coming conduct, good deed and fear of Allah. This libas or dress of Taq¬wa conceals human weaknesses and moral shortcomings. It delivers one from immediate hardships and ultimate losses. Therefore, it is the best of dresses one can wear.
Present here is the hint that an evil-doing person who has no fear of Allah and does not care for acting right, must be disgraced ultimate¬ly, no matter how he covers up – as reported by Ibn Jarir from Sayyidna ` Uthman al-Ghani (رض) that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said: By Allah in whose hands rests the life of Muhammad, whatever a person does in secret, Allah Ta` ala wraps his deed like a sheet around him and announces it – the good of it, if the deed is good, and the evil of it, if the deed is evil. Wrapping like a sheet on the body means that it is visible to everyone. No matter how secretly one may do something, Allah Ta` ala makes its effects become evident on the face and the body. Then, to authenticate his statement, the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) recited this verse: وَرِيشًا ۖ وَلِبَاسُ التَّقْوَىٰ ذَٰلِكَ خَيْرٌ ۚ ذَٰلِكَ مِنْ آيَاتِ اللَّـهِ (… and dress that adorns. And the dress of Taqwa , that is the best. That is one of the signs of Allah).
The Real Purpose of Physical Dress Too is to Achieve Taqwa
The expression, ` Dress of Taqwa,’ indicates that the purpose of physical dress which fulfills the function of covering the body properly, and helps beautify it as well, is really a way of achieving the ability to fear Allah, or Taqwa as in the Qur’an. This ability should manifest it-self in the way one dresses. The parts of the body which must be cov¬ered should be fully covered. It should be ensured that one’s modesty stays concealed. Neither should it be allowed to remain naked, nor should the dress on the body be so tight-fitting through which body parts look like being naked. Then, this dress should not have the flair of pride and arrogance, instead, it should reflect modesty and humili¬ty. Then, it should not be extravagant either. The cloth material used should be tailored to need. And neither should the dress for women be masculine, nor the dress for men be feminine, which is odious and re¬pugnant in the sight of Allah. Also, there should be no imitation in wearing a dress like others which is a sign of deviation from the estab¬lished norms of one’s community.
Along with it, there is the crucial need to correct one’s morals and deeds which is the real purpose of dress. At the end of the verse comes the invitation to understand: ذَٰلِكَ مِنْ آيَاتِ اللَّـهِ لَعَلَّهُمْ يَذَّكَّرُونَ (That is one of the signs of Allah, so that they may be receptive to advice).
يٰبَنِيْٓ اٰدَمَ لَا يَفْتِنَنَّكُمُ الشَّيْطٰنُ كَمَآ اَخْرَجَ اَبَوَيْكُمْ مِّنَ الْجَنَّةِ
In the second verse (27), the address reverts to all children of Adam (عليه السلام) and the admonition given is that they should keep guarding against the deception of Shaytan in everything they do under whatever cir¬cumstance they are – lest, Shaytan puts them on another trial as he did with their parents, ‘Adam and Eve. He made them leave Paradise, caused them to shed their dress and render their essential cover to be uncovered. He was their eternal enemy. His enmity was something, they were never to lose sight of.
At the end of the verse, it was said:
إِنَّهُ يَرَاكُمْ هُوَ وَقَبِيلُهُ مِنْ حَيْثُ لَا تَرَوْنَهُمْ ۗ إِنَّا جَعَلْنَا الشَّيَاطِينَ أَوْلِيَاءَ لِلَّذِينَ لَا يُؤْمِنُونَ
Indeed, he sees you – he and his company – from where you do not see them. Surely, We have made the satans friends forthose who do not believe – (27).
Here, the word: قَبِیل (qabil) means company or group. A joined family group is called: Qabilah or tribe. Common groups are known as qabil. The sense of the verse is: For you the Satan is a kind of enemy that he and his accomplices do see you but you do not see them. Therefore, the chances that you would fall a victim to their deception are fairly strong.
But, in other verses, it has also been clarified that people who keep turning to Allah Ta` ala and maintain their guard against the deception of Shaytan, for them, the wily web of Shaytan is much too weak.
Then, what has been said at the end of this verse – that ` We have made the satans friends and guardians of those who do not believe’ – also indicates that those who believe should not find staying away from their web of deception at all difficult.
Some righteous elders have said that the defence against the ene¬my who sees us but we cannot see him is simple. Let us come under the protection of Allah Ta` ala. He sees these satans, watches how they move and act – but they cannot see Him.
And the statement, that human beings cannot see Shaytan, is in terms of general conditions and habit. If a human being were to see them contra-habitually, that would not be considered contrary to it – as is the case of Jinns coming to the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) who asked questions and embraced Islam, which appears in authentic nar¬rations of Hadith. (Ruh al-Ma’ani)
وَاِذَا فَعَلُوْا فَاحِشَةً قَالُوْا وَجَدْنَا عَلَيْهَآ اٰبَاۗءَنَا وَاللّٰهُ اَمَرَنَا بِهَا
Before Islam, one of the many shameful and absurd customs Shaytan had made the people of ` Arab Jahiliyyah follow was that no one, other than the Quraysh, could make the Tawaf of Ka’bah in one’s own clothes. Instead of that, the requirement was to borrow a dress from a Qurayshi, otherwise, make the Tawaf naked.
As obvious, the Quraysh could not provide clothes to the whole people of Arabia, therefore, the consequence was that these people would make Tawaf mostly naked, men and women, both, with women usually doing their Tawaf in the darkness of the night. Then, they would explain the satanic expediency of this act by saying: The clothes wearing which we have committed sins are clothes in which making the Tawaf of the Ka’bah is contrary to etiquette (so devoid of commonsense they were that it did not occur to them that making their Tawaf naked was far more contrary to etiquette, and still more so, contrary to human dignity itself) and the only exception to this rule was the tribe of Qu¬raysh which, because they were the servants of the sacred Haram, was not bound to follow this law of nudity.’
The first verse among those cited above has been revealed to iden¬tify and eliminate this absurd custom. It was said in the verse that on occasions when they did something shameful and people told them not to do so, their answer to them would be that their forefathers and eld¬ers have been doing so all along, and now for them, to forsake their practice was a matter of shame. Then, they also said that this was what Allah had told them to do. (Ibn Kathir)
In this verse, ‘al-faihsha,’ according to most commentators means this very naked Tawaf. In fact, fuhsh, fahsha and fahishah refer to eve¬ry evil act the evil of which reaches the farthest limits and is all too loud and clear in terms of commonsense and sound taste (Mazhari). Then, that its good and bad becomes quite rational too, is something which stands established universally. (Rub al-Ma’ani)
Then, come the two arguments they advanced in support of the continuance of this absurd custom. One of these was the need to follow ancestral customs, that is, maintaining these was good in itself. The answer to this proposition was fairly clear as the blind following of ancestral customs was not something reasonable. Even a person of average commonsense can understand that a method cannot be justified on the basis that one’s forefathers used to do so. If the methods used by forefathers were to be taken to be sufficient to justify the legitimacy of an action, then, the fact is that forefathers of different peoples of the world used to act differently, even contradictorily. This argument will, then, render all erroneous methods of the whole world to be correct and permissible. In short, this argument advanced by these ignorant people did not deserve attention. Therefore, the Qur’an has not consid¬ered it necessary to answer this question here. Though, in some Ha¬dith narrations, it has been answered by saying that an act of ignor¬ance which may have been committed by one’s forefathers could hardly be worth following by any stretch of imagination.
The second argument in favour of their naked Tawaf advanced by these people was that Allah had ordered them to do so. This was a fla¬grant lie. They were attributing to Allah what He had never commanded. Addressing the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) the answer given was: قُلْ إِنَّ اللَّـهَ لَا يَأْمُرُ بِالْفَحْشَاءِ (Allah never bids anything shameful) – because commanding people to do something like that is against His wisdom and counter to His state of being the Purest of the pure. Then, taken to task was their false and untrue, attribution to Allah. They were warned with the words: أَتَقُولُونَ عَلَى اللَّـهِ مَا لَا تَعْلَمُونَ (Do you say about Allah what you do not know?). It means that they were attributing a falsity to Allah without having an evidence in support; and it is obvious that attributing something to someone without proper investigation and authority is an act of rank effrontery and patent injustice. Then if done in the case of Allah Jalla Sha’nuhu, reporting anything so falsely will be a crime and injustice the magnitude of which cannot be ima¬gined. At this point, let it be understood clearly that the respected Mujtahid Imams, when they deduce, formulate and describe injunc¬tions which appear in the verses of the Qur’an through Ijtihad, that ef¬fort does not fall under the purview of this verse. The reason is that their deduction is a process which operates under the justification of the very words and meanings of the Qur’an.
قُلْ اَمَرَ رَبِّيْ بِالْقِسْطِ ۣوَاَقِيْمُوْا وُجُوْهَكُمْ عِنْدَ كُلِّ مَسْجِدٍ وَّادْعُوْهُ مُخْلِصِيْنَ لَهُ الدِّيْنَ
Said in the second verse was: قُلْ أَمَرَ رَبِّي بِالْقِسْطِ (Say, “My Lord has bid-den me to do justice). Here, the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) has been asked to tell those ignorant people, who were falsely attributing the justification of their naked Tawaf towards Allah, that Allah always commands justice. The word used here is: اَقِسط (al-qist) which essen¬tially means justice, balance and moderation. At this place, ` al-qist’ re¬fers to a conduct which is free of excess or deficiency, that is, which neither falls short, nor exceeds the appointed limits – as is the case with all injunctions of the Shari’ah. Therefore, under this sense of qist’ included there are all acts of worship and obedience as well as all general injunctions of the Shari’ah. (Ruh al-Ma’ani)
After having stated the command of justice and moderation, two injunctions of the Shari’ah relevant to their erroneous conduct have been particularly mentioned. These are: وَأَقِيمُوا وُجُوهَكُمْ عِندَ كُلِّ مَسْجِدٍ (and yourself be aright at each occasion of prostration) and: وَادْعُوهُ مُخْلِصِينَ لَهُ الدِّينَ (and pray to Him with pure faith in Him). The first command relates to what one does physically and outwardly. The other belongs to the heart, the spiritual dimension. In the first injunction, the word: مسجِد (Masjid), according to most commentators, appears in the sense of prostration (sajdah, sujud or ‘Ibadah) and it means that one should be aright at the time of every Salah or any other act of worship. It could also mean that one should make an effort and be particular to keep one’s orientation straight towards the Qiblah. And being aright or keeping the orientation straight could also mean that one should sub-ordinate everything one says or does to what Allah has commanded, maintaining an orientation and stance that never varies, never dwin¬dles and moves elsewhere. Given this meaning, this injunction will not remain particular for Salah only – instead, it would comprehend all acts of worship, dealings and transactions.
The second injunction means that one should worship Allah, pure¬ly and exclusively, without associating in that act anyone else in any capacity, even to the limit that such worship should also be free from, and untainted with, what is known as al-Shirk al-Khafiyy (concealed Shirk of associating others with the Divinity of Allah), that is, hypocri¬sy and riya’ (show off).
By mentioning both injunctions together, the indication being giv¬en could be that one must correct, align and synchronize both dimen¬sions of one’s person, the outward and the inward, the physical and the spiritual, with the injunctions of the Shari’ah. Not enough is obvi¬ous obedience (Ita` ah) without sincerity (Ikhlas), nor can simple sincer¬ity of the heart become sufficient without following the Shari` ah as vis¬ible outwardly too. Instead of that, it is binding on everyone that one should correct and align one’s outward bearings in accordance with the Shari` ah and never forget to keep his or her inward state of being too reserved for Allah Ta` ala alone. This helps us see the error (dichotomy) of those who take Shari` ah (the outward or physical adherence to faith) and Tariqah (the inward or spiritual adherence to faith) as two differ¬ent ways to approach religion. Some of them would even presume that it was sufficient to correct one’s inward dimension as shown by Tari¬qah – even if they go about doing what is contrary to the Shari` ah! This is a gaping error.
At the end of the verse (29), it was said: كَمَا بَدَأَكُمْ تَعُودُونَ (As He originat¬ed you, so you will return). It means that it was He who created you first and it will be He who will make you rise again on the day of Qiya¬mah. For His perfect power, this was not difficult at all. Perhaps to indicate this element of convenience what was said here is: تَعُودُونَ (ta` udun: you will return) and not: یُعِیدُکُم ‘ (We shall make you rise) since making to rise again requires not much action. (Ruh al-Ma’ani)
There is an additional benefit of introducing this sentence here. It helps one in abiding by the injunctions of the Shari’ ah – because it is the realization that there is a life-to-come, and a Last Day, the Day of Qiyamah, and reward or punishment for deeds, good or bad, which makes what is difficult easy, and what is painful bearable. Experience bears out that man is a tough customer. Unless one is under such grip-ping apprehension, no word of advice can make him do what is right, nor can the restriction of any law stop him from going into crimes.
فَرِيْقًا هَدٰي وَفَرِيْقًا حَقَّ عَلَيْهِمُ الضَّلٰلَةُ ۭاِنَّهُمُ اتَّخَذُوا الشَّيٰطِيْنَ اَوْلِيَاۗءَ مِنْ دُوْنِ اللّٰهِ
In the third verse (30), it was said that there are people Allah has guided right while there are others who have provided the proof of their erroneous conduct, because they have, bypassing Allah, made sa¬tans their comrades, and they presume that they are on the right path.
The sense is that the guidance of Allah Subhanahu wa Ta` ala was open to all, but they turned away from it and started following satans, then, on top of it, they were led to think that their sickness was health, and their error, guidance.
This verse tells us that not knowing the injunctions of the Shari` ah is no valid excuse. If someone takes to a way of error thinking it to be correct with full sincerity, he will not be considered excusable in the sight of Allah. – because Allah has given everyone reason and common-sense to use it and distinguish the true from the false. Then, man was not left to rely on his reason alone. He sent prophets and books. They made the right and wrong and the true and false all too clear.
Now someone may doubt that a person who is acting in good faith, though in error, should not have any blame coming to him. He should be excused because he is not aware of his error. The answer is that Al¬lah Ta` ala has blessed human beings with reason and sense with the added benefit of the teachings of the noble prophets, may peace be upon them all. At least, through these, he should be able to compare his method and way with that suggested by them. There has to be some doubt or pinch or question in his mind. Now, his fault is that he did not pay any attention to what they taught and kept sticking to the way of error he had taken to.
However, a person who has striven his best in the quest of truth, yet failed to find the right path and true teaching, may be found excus¬able in the sight of Allah – as Imam al-Ghazali has said in his book, Al-Tafriqah Bayn al-Islam wa Al-zandaqah واللہ اَعلَم .
يٰبَنِيْٓ اٰدَمَ خُذُوْا زِيْنَتَكُمْ عِنْدَ كُلِّ مَسْجِدٍ وَّكُلُوْا وَاشْرَبُوْا وَلَا تُسْرِفُوْا
In the fourth verse (31), it was said: ` 0 children of ‘Adam, take along what looks good on you to every mosque. And eat and drink and do not be extravagant. Surely, He does not like the extravagant’. In the way the ` Arabs of Jahiliyyah used to take the making of the Tawaf of the Ka’bah naked as the correct method of worship and an act of reverence for the House of Allah, they also had a custom that they would skip eating and drinking during the days of Hajj. They would eat no more than what would keep them alive. They particularly abstained from butter oil, milk and other pure eatables. (Ibn Jarir)
The present verse was revealed against this absurd practice. It enjoined that they should abstain from it because making Tawaf naked was an act of immodesty and bad manners. Similarly, doing the re-verse of it, that is, abstaining from good food given by Allah Ta` ala without any valid excuse had hardly anything to do with religion. In fact, forbidding on themselves what Allah had made lawful for them was effrontery and excess in an act of worship, something disliked by Allah. Therefore, eat and drink as you wish during the days of Hajj, but do not be extravagant. Totally abstaining from Halal foods is also included under extravagance. Then, becoming heedless to the real ob¬jectives of Hajj and the Dhikr of Allah and remaining busy with noth¬ing but eating and drinking is also included under extravagance.
Though this verse has been revealed to eradicate a particular cus¬tom of nudity in the ` Arab Jahiliyyah which they demonstrated at the time of Tawaf in the name of reverence for the Ka’bah, but the Imams of Tafsir and the Jurists of Muslim Ummah unanimously agree that the revelation of an injunction in relation to a particular event does not mean that that injunction is restricted to the same event. Instead, what is considered here is the generality of words. The injunction, then, applies on everything that falls under the generality of these words.
Covering the Body Properly is Obligatory : There is No Salah Without it
Therefore, the majority of Sahabah and Tabi’in, and the Mujtahid, Imams, have deduced many injunctions from this verse. The most im¬portant of them is about Salah. As making Tawaf naked has been pro¬hibited in this verse, the ruling applies identically to Salah as well which becomes Haram (forbidden) and false and futile – because the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) has said in a Hadith: اَلطَوَافُ بِالب (رض) َیتِ صَلوٰۃُ (The Taw¬af of the House [ of Allah ] is Salah). In addition to that, since the major¬ity of commentators agree that the word, ` masjid’ in this verse itself means Sajdah (sujud, prostration), the prohibition of nudity in the state of Sajdah becomes explicitly inclusive in this verse. Now, if this is prohibited in Sajdah, then, it will obviously stand prohibited in all other movements of Salah such as Ruku`, Qiyam and Qu` ud. Then, the statement of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) itself has made it more evident.
It also appears in Hadith that the Salah of any adult woman is not permissible without proper head and body cover (khimar, rida, chadar, dupatta or large scarf) (Tirmidhi).
That covering the body properly is obligatory in conditions other than Salah as well stands proved from other verses of the Qur’an and the narrations of Hadith – one such verse has already appeared a little earlier: يَا بَنِي آدَمَ قَدْ أَنزَلْنَا عَلَيْكُمْ لِبَاسًا يُوَارِي سَوْآتِكُمْ We have sent down to you clothing that covers your shame – 26.’
To sum up, it can be said that covering the body properly is the first human and Islamic obligation on everyone which is mandatory under all conditions – and, in Salah and Tawaf, it is obligatory in the first degree.
A Good Dress For Salah
The verse brings out another rule of conduct. By calling dress: ` Zinah,’ (adornment), the hint given is that the preferred practice in Sa¬lah is that one should not limit himself to only covering his body func¬tionally, but choose to wear what adorns, looks becoming – of course, within one’s means. It was the habit of Sayyidna Hasan (رض) ، that he would wear his best dress at the time of Salah saying: Allah Ta` ala loves beauty, therefore, I dress myself beautifully to please my Lord for He has said: خُذُوا زِينَتَكُمْ عِندَ كُلِّ مَسْجِدٍ (take along what looks good on you to every mosque).
So, we can see that this verse proves two things, that covering the body properly is obligatory in Salah and that it is recommended and merit-worthy to wear a neat, clean and good dress, within means.
Salah and Dress : Some Rulings
The third problem at this place is about سَتر Satr, that is, the parts of the body to be concealed, concealing which is, under all conditions, and specially in Salah and Tawaf, an obligation (Fard) – so, what are its lim¬its? The Qur’an has given a command briefly – its details have been entrusted with the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) . He explained it in details. He told us that the Satr of men is from the navel to the knees, and the Satr of women is the whole body except the face and both palms and feet, which are exempt.
All these details appear in Hadith narrations. For men, if the body below the navel, or if the knees are open, then, such a dress is a sin in itself, and Salah too does not get to be performed in it as due and prop¬er. Similarly, if the head, neck or arms or shin or calf of a woman are open, then, her being dressed like that is impermissible in itself, and Salah too does not get to performed as due and proper. Says the Ha¬dith: ` A home in which there is a woman with her head uncovered, angels of good would not come there.
That the face of a woman, her palms and feet which have been ex¬empted from Satr (the parts of body covering and concealing which is obligatory) means that, should these be open during the Salah it will cause no defect in Salah It never means that a woman would be mov¬ing freely even before non-Mahram man (marriage with whom is per¬missible) with her face open without a valid excuse as admitted by the Shari’ ah of Islam.
As for this injunction, it is related to the obligation of covering the body properly (Satr) which is sine qua non for Salah – that is, it stands as if not performed at all. And since what is required in Salah is not the functional covering of the body alone, instead, the advice given is to wear a dress which looks good on one (Zinah), therefore, for men to make Salah bare-headed, or doing it with shoulders or elbows open, is Makruh (reprehensible or disliked) – whether the shirt itself be half-sleeved, or has been rolled up, the Salah remains Makruh after all. Similarly, Salah remains Makruh in a dress one would not prefer to wear before friends, or in public, as something unbecoming – for exam¬ple, wearing an undershirt alone – without a shirt, even if it has full sleeves; or, skipping the wearing of a cap and making do with some cloth piece or a tiny handkerchief knotted or tucked round the head. When no regular person would like to appear before friends or others in that head-bare state, how would that become desirable as a mode of appearance before Allah, the Master of all the worlds? That Salah is Makruh when offered with bare head, shoulders and elbows has been inferred from the word: زِینَۃ (zinah: what looks good) of this Qur’anic verse, and also from the clarifications of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) .
To recapitulate, it can be said that the injunction in this verse was primarily revealed to eradicate the custom of nudity in pagan Arabia (the age of Jahiliyyah), but the generality of its words yielded other in-junctions and rulings as well. Similar is the case with the second sen¬tence in the verse: كُلُوا وَاشْرَبُوا وَلَا تُسْرِفُوا ، (Eat and drink and do not be extrav¬agant). Though, this too was revealed to erase the custom of Arab Jahiliyyah that they would take eating good food during the days of Hajj as sin, but, here too, the generality of words helps prove many injunctions and rulings.
Eating and Drinking as Needed is Obligatory
To begin with, eating and drinking is obligatory on everyone from the point of view of the Shari’ah as well. If anyone abandons eating and drinking despite having the ability to do so, to the limit that he dies, or becomes too weak even to fulfill what is obligatory on him, then, this person shall be sinning and committing a crime in the sight of Allah.
Legality Operates until Proved Otherwise
One ruling deduced from this verse, as specified by Al-Jassas in his Ahkam al-Qur’an, is: Basically, all edibles are permissible and Halal (lawful) unless the unlawfulness or prohibition of something particular stands proved through an evidence of the Shari’ah. In its absence, everything will be considered permissible and lawful. This was suggested by the fact that the object of: كُلُوا وَاشْرَبُوا (Eat and drink) was not mentioned in the verse, that is, it did not specify what to eat or drink. The masters of Arabic diction have clearly established that not mentioning the object on such occasions is an indicator towards its generality, that is, one can eat and drink everything, except things which have been declared to be Haram (unlawful, impermissible, prohibited, forbidden). (Ahkam AI-Qur’an by Al-Jassas)
Extravagance in Eating and Drinking is Not Permissible
The last sentence of the verse: وَلَا تُسْرِفُوا (do not be extravagant) proves that eating and drinking is, no doubt, permissible – in fact, it is an order – but, along with it, being extravagant while doing so is pro¬hibited. ` Israf means to cross the limit. Then, the crossing of limits takes many forms. One of them is to cross the limits of Halal and land into the area of Haram, that is, one starts eating and drinking things which are prohibited. That this is Haram is all too obvious.
Another aspect is that one starts taking what Allah has made Ha¬lal and abstains from it as being Haram without any valid legal excuse as admitted by the Shari` ah of Islam. It should be understood that the way it is a crime and sin to use what is Haram, similarly, taking the Halal as Haram is also a rebellion against Divine Law and a very grave sin. (Ibn Kathir, Mazhari & Ruh al-Ma` ni)
On the same analogy, eating and drinking beyond the limits of hunger and need is also what Israf or extravagance is. It is for this reason that Muslim Jurists (fuqaha’ ) have written that eating more than needed to remove hunger is not permissible (Ahkam al-Qur’an and others). Then, it also falls under the ruling governing Israf or extrava¬gance that one eats much less than needed, despite having the ability and choice, which makes him weak and unable to fulfill what is enjoined upon him. It was to forbid both these kinds of extravagance that the Qur’an has said:
إِنَّ الْمُبَذِّرِينَ كَانُوا إِخْوَانَ الشَّيَاطِين
The extravagant are brothers of the satans – 17:27.
Then, in Surah Al-Furqan, it was said:
وَالَّذِينَ إِذَا أَنفَقُوا لَمْ يُسْرِفُوا وَلَمْ يَقْتُرُوا وَكَانَ بَيْنَ ذَٰلِكَ قَوَامًا ﴿67﴾
(True servants of Allah are) those who, when they spend, would not over-spend and under-spend and the moderate be¬havior is between that. – 25:67.
Moderation in Eating and Drinking is Always Beneficial
Sayyidna Faruq al-A` zam (رض) said: ` Avoid eating and drinking too much because it spoils the body, generates diseases and slackens activity. Instead, take to moderation in eating and drinking for it is good for the health of the body, and is far removed from extravagance (Israf) in it.’ He also said: ` Allah Ta` ala does not like an obese ` Alim’ (that is, a scholar of religion who has become fat and heavy as a result of eating excessively by choice). Then, he further said: ` A person does not get destroyed until he starts preferring his personal desires over his Faith.’ (Ruh A-Ma` ani from Abu Nu` aym)
Righteous elders of the early period have said that to keep busy with the business of eating and drinking all the time, or to prefer it over other matters of importance giving the impression that one has no other worthy purpose left in life but eating and drinking, is includ¬ed under Israf (extravagance). Also well-known is their saying that one should eat to live, not live to eat.
In a Hadith, the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) has included the atti¬tude of compulsively satiating every desire as and when it emerges as included under Israf (extravagance). The words of the Hadith are: اِنَّ مِنَ الاِسرَافِ اَن تاکُلَ کُلَّ مَا اشتَھَتَ (It is also an Israf that one eats everything one desires). (Ibn Majah from Sayyidna Anas)
As reported by AI-Baihaqi, The Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) once saw Sayyidah ` A’ishahi, eating twice on a day and he said: ` Ya ` A’ishah, would you like that eating becomes your only pastime?’
And this command for moderation in eating and drinking men¬tioned in this verse is not restricted to eating and drinking alone. The truth of the matter is that the course of moderation is very desirable in wearing what one wears and living where one lives, in almost everything. Sayyidna ` Abdullah ibn ` Abbas (رض) said: Eat and drink what you wish and wear what you like. But, take care of two things: One, that there be no Israf (excess from the measure of need) in it. Two, that there be no pride and arrogance about it.
Eight Rulings from One Ayah
In short, eight rulings of the Shari’ ah come out from the statement: كُلُوا وَاشْرَبُوا وَلَا تُسْرِفُوا (Eat and drink and do not be extravagant): (1) Eating and drinking is obligatory as needed, (2) unless the unlawfulness of something stands proved as based on an evidence admitted by the Shari` ah, everything is Halal, (3) the use of things prohibited by Allah and His Messenger is Israf and is impermissible, (4) tak¬ing as Haram what Allah has made Halal is also Israf, and a grave sin, (5) once one has eaten his fill, eating anymore is impermissible, (6) eating so little that one becomes weak and is rendered unable to fulfill his obligations is also Israf, (7) to keep thinking of eating and drinking all the time is also Israf and (8) It is not necessary that one must have what one wishes for at a given time.
The rules recounted above which emerge from this verse have their religious benefits. If one looks at it medically, a better prescription for health and well-being will be difficult to find. The key is: Moderation in eating and drinking. That is your sanctuary from all diseases.
According to Tafsir Ruh al-Ma’ani and Mazhari, Khalifah Harun Al-Rashid had a personal physician who was a Christian. He said to ` Ali ibn Husayn ibn al-Waqidi: ` Your Book (the Qur’an) has nothing about medicine in it, although there are only two fields of knowledge in our time, the knowledge of religion and the knowledge of bodies called Medicine.”Ali ibn Husayn said: Allah Ta` ala has put the whole science of medicine in half a verse of the Qur’an. He says: كُلُوا وَاشْرَبُوا وَلَا تُسْرِفُوا (Eat and drink and do not be extravagant) (Tafsir Ibn Kathir reports this saying also with reference to some other righteous elders of the earlier times). Then, the Court physician asked: All right, is there something in the sayings of your prophet about Medicine?’ ` Ali ibn Husayn replied: ` The Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) has reduced the whole science of medicine in a few sayings of his when he said that ` the stomach is the nursery of diseases’ and ` abstinence from harmful things is the root of all medicine’ and ` give everybody what it can take (as a matter of hab¬it) ‘ (Kashshaf & Rub a1-Ma` ani). After hearing this, the Christian physician said: ` Your Book and your Prophet have left no Medicine for Galen (Jalinus).’
Based on a narration from Sayyidna Abi Hurairah (رض) in Shu’ab al-‘Iman, Al-Baihaqi has reported that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said: ` The stomatch is the reservoir of the body. All arteries and nerves of the body get satiated from this reservoir. If the stomach is in proper order, all veins will return with healthy food from here. And if it is not in proper order, all veins will spread out in the body as car¬riers of diseases.’
Muhaddithin (experts in the discipline of Hadith) have expressed doubts about the use of some words in these narrations of Hadith. But, all of them agree to the emphasis laid on eating moderately and ob¬serving precaution present in countless Ahadith. (Ruh al-Ma’ani)
قُلْ مَنْ حَرَّمَ زِيْنَةَ اللّٰهِ الَّتِيْٓ اَخْرَجَ لِعِبَادِهٖ وَالطَّيِّبٰتِ مِنَ الرِّزْقِ
Warned in the first verse are those who practice excess in acts of worship and introduce self-invented restrictions into it. They would abstain from things made Halal by Allah Ta` ala and go on to make them Haram on them and call it an act of obedience to and worship of Allah – as was the case of the disbelievers of Makkah who just did not consider wearing clothes in Tawaf during the days of Hajj as permissi¬ble and who used to think of abstinence from good food made lawful by Allah Ta` ala to be an act of worship.
Such people have been sternly reprimanded in a chastising mode by inquiring as to who has made good and becoming dress created by Allah for his servants and the good and pure foods bestowed by Him Haram for people?
Abstinence from Good Dress and Tasty Food is No Teaching of Islam
It means that to determine and declare something to be Halal or Haram is the sole right of the Most Sacred Being that has created it. No one is permitted to interfere in this matter. Therefore, those who consider good dress and good food made lawful by Allah as something Haram for themselves deserve the wrath and punishment from Allah. Living in tattered rags despite having the means is no teaching of Islam, nor is it something considered worth emulation in Islam as some ignorant people think.
Many among the early righteous elders and juristic Imams of Islam whom Allah had been blessed with good means would often times wear elegant, even expensive dresses. Our own master, may the blessing of Allah and peace be upon him, when his means allowed it, has adorned his body with the best of dresses. According to one narration, once when he came out, there was on his blessed body a Rida’ the price of which was one thousand dirhams. As reported by Imam Abu Hani¬fah (رح) ، he had used a Rida’ worth four hundred guineas. Similarly, Imam Malik (رح) always used decent and elegant dress. For him, someone had taken it on himself that he would provide three hundred and sixty pairs of dresses annually for his use. And a pair which adorned his body for a day would not be used again because after having been worn for one day, he would give this dress to some poor student.
The reason is that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) has said: When Allah Ta` ala blesses a servant of His with extended means, He likes to see the effect of His blessing on things around him, his dress being one them. Therefore, to let such blessing become visible is also a form of owing gratitude. In contrast, there is the attitude of wearing worn-out or untidy clothes, despite having the means, which is ingratitude.
However, it is necessary to guard against two things, that is, from hypocrisy and exhibitionism, and from pride and arrogance. It means that one should not dress well simply to show off before others or to establish that they were superior or special as compared to them. And it is obvious that the righteous elders of the early period were free from such attitudes.
As for the reported use of ordinary or patched dress by the Holy Prophet صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم Sayyidna Faruq al-A` zam (رض) and some other Sahabah among the righteous elders is concerned, it had two rea¬sons. First of all, whatever came in their hands as their income, they would spend it out over the poor and the needy, and in the pursuit of their religious objectives. For their own person, they would be left with too little to afford a nice dress. Then, they were leaders of people. They let themselves be in that simple and inexpensive bearing as it was so what others with extended means would get the message, and that common people and the poor and needy are not overwhelmed by their financial status.
The same thing holds valid in the case of the noble Sufis (the group of rightly guided mystics in Islam who lay primary stress on spiritual purification). When they make new aspirants abstain from fine dresses and tasty foods, they really do not intend to say that leaving these things off for good is an act of thawab or merit. Far from it. Instead of that, it is only to put the brakes on the wanton desires of the human self during the initial stage of the quest for truth that they would pre-scribe such regimen of striving, as treatment and medicine. When the aspirant reaches a stage where he has learnt to control the desires of his self and it can no more be attracted to and snared by what is Har¬am and impermissible, then, at that time, all masters of the spiritual orders would use and recommend good dress and tasty foods like the general body of early righteous elders. When done at that time, these fine blessings of human sustenance become for them the source of knowing their Creator and achieving nearness to Him – rather becom¬ing impediments (through any lack of gratitude or triumph of desires as it is likely in the early stage).
The Sunnah of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) in Food and Dress
About food and dress, the essential way of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) the Sahabah and the Tabi` in is that one should not be unnatu¬rally concerned about these. Dress and food within easy access are good enough and should be used gratefully. If the dress is coarse and the food dry, there is no need to go to the trouble of finding something better one way or the other – even if one has to borrow, or that one starts worrying about what one misses so much that one lands himself into some other trouble.
Similarly, when good dress and food are naturally available, one should not go to the extreme trouble of spoiling them or avoiding their use. Thus, the way the seeking of good dress and good food is a self-imposed constraint, very similarly, doing the opposite of it, that is, to spoil what is good and to leave it aside in favour of what is bad, is also a self-imposed constraint – and a blameworthy one.
Why should this be done? The next sentence of the verse explains the wisdom behind it. It says that all blessings, which include fine dresses and nice foods, have really been created for obedient believers. Others are enjoying these because of them – because this world is the venue of deeds not the venue of rewards. You cannot draw a line of dis¬tinction between the genuine and the counterfeit, the good and the bad in the matter of blessings available in this mortal world. Here, the feast is open to all. The blessings are there from the All-Merciful. He is Al-Rahman for this whole world. But, the arrangements in this world obey the will of Allah – and the customary practice of Allah in this world is: When the obedient believers in Allah fall short in their duties to Him, other people overcome them, grab the treasures of worldly blessings and, as a result, the believing servants of Allah become sub¬jected to hunger and poverty.
But, this law operates within this mortal world of deeds only. Once in the Hereafter, all blessings and comforts shall be reserved for the obedient servants of Allah. This is what the sentence: قُلْ هِيَ لِلَّذِينَ آمَنُوا فِي الْحَيَاةِ الدُّنْيَا خَالِصَةً يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ in this verse means, that is, `( O prophet) you tell them that all blessings in the worldly life itself are really the right of the believers – and, on the day of Qiyamah, they shall be theirs exclu¬sively.’
Sayyidna ` Abdullah ibn ` Abbas (رض) has explained this verse by saying that all blessings and comforts of the world are – subject to the safeguard that they do not become a source of trouble for them in the Hereafter – are the rightful share of obedient believers only. Contrary is the case of disbelievers and sinners who, though they too receive these blessing in their mortal life, rather receive more of it, but these blessings of theirs are going to become their nemesis in the Hereafter bringing punishment which will last forever. Therefore, as the outcome shows, this is not the kind of comfort and honour one would wel-come.
Some other commentators have determined its meaning by saying that all blessings and comforts of the world are laced with ceaseless striving, the apprehension of decline and never-ending anxiety. Pure blessing and pure comfort simply do not exist here. However, whoever gets these blessings on the day of Judgment, they will have them in the state of absolute purity. There will be no striving for it, no appre¬hension of decline or loss in it, nor any worries after it. The three ex¬planations of the sense of this sentence in this verse as given above could be accommodated therein and that is why commentators among the Sahabah and Tabi` in have gone by them.
At the end of the verse, it was said: كَذَٰلِكَ نُفَصِّلُ الْآيَاتِ لِقَوْمٍ يَعْلَمُونَ (This is how We elaborate the verses for people who understand). This verse carries a refutation of the excessive deeds and ignorant views of people who suggested that Allah Ta` ala is pleased with the practice of abandoning good dress and good food.
قُلْ اِنَّمَا حَرَّمَ رَبِّيَ الْفَوَاحِشَ مَا ظَهَرَ مِنْهَا وَمَا بَطَنَ وَالْاِثْمَ وَالْبَغْيَ بِغَيْرِ الْحَقِّ
After that, the second verse takes up the description of some of the things declared unlawful by Allah Ta` ala forsaking which really brings His pleasure. The hint given here is that these people were suffering from a twofold ignorance. On the one hand, they deprived themselves of the good things of life Allah had made lawful for them by denying to use them as if they were unlawful – and did so for no reason. Then, on the other hand, there were things genuinely and really unlawful, things the use of which was to result in the wrath of Allah and the punishment of the Hereafter, these they embraced with both arms only to discover that they had embraced what was to be their undoing in the life-to-come. Thus, they were doubly deprived, deprived of the blessings they had in the mortal world and deprived of the blessings they had the chance of having in the Hereafter. After that, says the Qur’an:
إِنَّمَا حَرَّمَ رَبِّيَ الْفَوَاحِشَ مَا ظَهَرَ مِنْهَا وَمَا بَطَنَ وَالْإِثْمَ وَالْبَغْيَ بِغَيْرِ الْحَقِّ وَأَن تُشْرِكُوا بِاللَّـهِ مَا لَمْ يُنَزِّلْ بِهِ سُلْطَانًا وَأَن تَقُولُوا عَلَى اللَّـهِ مَا لَا تَعْلَمُونَ
Say, “My Lord has prohibited only the shameful things, what is apparent from them and what is hidden, and sin and unjust aggression, and that you associate with Allah something for which He has not sent any authority, and that you say about Allah what you do not know – 33.
In the detail given above, the word: اِثم (ithm : sin) covers all sins which fall on one personally – and in: بَغیَ ; (baghy : injustice) included there are sins which relate to rights and dealings as concerning others. Then come Shirk, the associating of partners with Allah, and the forg¬ing of lies against Him. That they are grave sins is quite evident.
This particular detail was mentioned here also because it covers almost all kinds of prohibitions and sins – whether they pertained to belief or conduct, or were done personally, or related to rights of others which were usurped. This was done also because these people of the Jahiliyyah were involved with all these crimes and prohibitions. Thus, exposed here was another demonstration of their ignorance which was that they would abstain from what was made lawful for them and would not even hesitate to use what was declared to be unlawful.
Unfortunately, it is a necessary outcome of excess (ghuluww) in re¬ligion and introduction of self-invented practices (bid` at) in it that peo¬ple who get involved with this type of activity become habitually heedless to the root of religion and its essential requirements. Therefore, the Haram caused by excess in religion and innovation in established faith is twofold. First of all getting involved with such Ghuluww and Bid’ah is a sin in itself. Then, seen in contrast, far too grave is the very deprivation from the true religion of Allah and the genuine way of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) .Refuge with Allah (from such a fate) !
اِنَّ الَّذِيْنَ كَذَّبُوْا بِاٰيٰتِنَا وَاسْتَكْبَرُوْا عَنْهَا لَا تُفَتَّحُ لَهُمْ اَبْوَابُ السَّمَاۗءِ
Mentioned first in the set of verses cited above (35-37) is a pledge taken from every human being in the world of spirits, before being born into the material world. The pledge envisaged that they would, when the prophets of Allah come to them with Divine guidance and injunctions, listen to them in earnest and act accordingly. They were also told that those who abide by the pledge and fulfill what it entails, will have their salvation from sorrows and deserve eternal peace and comfort. And conversely, those who belie prophets or rebel against injunctions they bring shall have the eternal punishment of Jahannam waiting for them. The later set of verses presents what actually hap¬pened when different groups of human beings came into the world and started acting differently. Some of them threw the pledge behind their backs and settled to oppose it. Others held to it and acted righteously. The ultimate end of the two groups and the reward and punishment for them has been described in the later four verses (40-43).
Mentioned in verses 40 and 41 are deniers and criminals, and in verses 42 and 43, the believers and God-fearing who fulfilled the pledge.
In the first verse (40), it was said that those who belied the proph¬ets of Allah and acted arrogantly against Divine guidance and ‘Ayat, for them, the gates of heaven will not be opened.
Reported in Al-Bahr Al-Muhit is a Tafsir of this verse from Sayyid¬na ` Abdullah ibn ` Abbas (رض) عنہما which says that the gates of heaven will be opened neither for them, nor for their prayers. It means that their prayer will not be answered and their deeds will be stopped from reaching the place where the deeds of the righteous servants of Allah are kept preserved, the name of which, according to the Qur’an, is: عِلِّيِّينَ (` Illiyyin) (Surah Al-Mutaffifin – 83:18-21). This subject has been referred to in yet another verse of the Qur’an where it is said: إِلَيْهِ يَصْعَدُ الْكَلِمُ الطَّيِّبُ وَالْعَمَلُ الصَّالِحُ يَرْفَعُهُ , that is, ` one’s good words are taken to Allah Ta` ala and one’s good deed carries them’ meaning that man’s good deeds become the cause of Tayyib Kalimat (good words) reaching Allah Ta` ala.
In a narration from Sayyidna ` Abdullah ibn ` Abbas and other Saha¬bah (رض) ، the Tafsir of the verse also says that the gates of heaven will not be opened for the spirits of deniers and disbelievers – and these spirits will be thrown down. This subject is supported by a Hadith of Sayyidna Bara’ ibn ` Azib (رض) which has been reported in detail by Abu Dawud, Nasa’i, Ibn Majah and Imam Ahmad, a summary of which is given below.
The Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) went to a Janazah of some Ansari Companion. The grave was not ready yet, so he sat down on an open spot. The Companions (رض) sat around him, silent. He raised his head and said: When the time of death comes for a believing servant of Allah, angels with white, radiant faces come from the heaven with the shroud and fragrance of the heaven and sit down in front of the person to die. Then, comes the angel of death, ‘Izra’ il (عليه السلام) and he addresses his Ruh (spirit, soul): 0 soul at peace, come out to receive the forgive¬ness and pleasure of your Rabb. Then, his Ruh comes out of the body, nice and easy, just like water coming out of a leather water-bag when opened. The angel of death receives his Ruh in his hands and entrusts it with the angels sitting there.
These angels start moving out with the Ruh of the deceased. Wherever they meet a group of angels on their way, they are asked: Whose sacred Ruh is it? These angels introduce the Ruh of the deceased by his name and title with which he was known as a mark of respect in his life of the world. They tell him who he is, so and so, son of so and so. Then, comes the time when these angels reach the first heaven with the Ruh. They ask for the gate to be opened. The gate is opened. More angels join them from here until they reach as far as the seventh heaven. At that time, Allah Ta` ala says: Write down the record of the deeds of this servant of Mine in the ` Illiyyin and then send him back.
The Ruh returns to the grave again. In the grave come angels who keep the account of deeds. They make him sit up, and ask him: ` Who is your Rabb?’ and ` what is your religion?’ He says: Allah Ta` ala is my Rabb and Islam is my religion. Then, comes the question: This pious person who has been sent for you – who is he? He says: He is the Rasul of Allah Ta` ala. Then comes a heavenly call: My servant is true. Roll out for him the carpet of Jannah. Dress him up in the apparel of Paradise. Open for him the door towards the Jannah. Through the door come the fragrance and breeze of Jannah and his good deed transformed into a handsome presence comes near him to help him become familiar and rested in company.
In contrast, when the time of death comes for disbelievers and de¬niers, angels with dark and terrifying profile come from the heaven carrying a coarse piece of ragged rug and sit down in front of him. Then, the angel of death draws his Ruh out as if it were a thorny branch with wet wool wrapped round it and through it the thorny branch was to be pulled out. When this Ruh comes out, its stench is deadlier than the stench of a spoiled dead animal. The angels start moving out with the Ruh of the deceased. When other angels meet en-route, they ask: Whose evil Ruh is this? The angels tell them the worst of his name and title with which he was known in the world. They tell them that he is so and so, the son of so and so. Until they reach the first heaven and ask for the gate to be opened. The gate is not opened for him. The command comes to keep his record of deeds in Sijjin where the record of the disobedient ones is maintained. His Ruh is thrown away. The Ruh returns to the grave. The angels responsible for account-taking make him sit up. They ask him the same questions they had asked the believer. His answer to every question is nothing but: ھَاہُ ھَاہُ لَا اَدرِی ، I do not know). He is given the bed of Jahannam and the dress of Jahannam. In his grave, a door is opened toward the Jahannam through which he keeps receiving the heat and flames of Jahannam. His grave is made to become straightened on him. We seek the refuge of Allah from it.
To sum up, it can be said that the spirits of deniers and disbeliev¬ers are taken upto the gate of the heaven. When the door does not open, they are thrown back from there. The verse: لَا تُفَتَّحُ لَهُمْ أَبْوَابُ السَّمَاءِ (the gates of the heavens will not be opened for them -40) may also mean that it is at the time of death that the gates of the heavens are not opened for them.
Towards the end of the verse, it was said: وَلَا يَدْخُلُونَ الْجَنَّةَ حَتَّىٰ يَلِجَ الْجَمَلُ فِي سَمِّ الْخِيَاطِ (and they shall not enter the Paradise unless a camel enters into the eye of a needle). Here, the word: ‘ يَلِجَ (yalij) is from: وَلوُج (wuluj) which means to enter a narrow opening. Jamal is camel and Samm, the eye of a needle. The translation covers the meaning literally. The sense of the verse is that the camel is a big animal and its entry into the eye of a needle is functionally impossible. So, equally impossible is their entry into Paradise. The purpose is to state that the punishment of Hell for them is everlasting. Then, follow the words which describe the added severity of the punishment in Hell: لَهُم مِّن جَهَنَّمَ مِهَادٌ وَمِن فَوْقِهِمْ (For them there is a bed from the Jahannam, and over them there are cov¬erings). The word: مِهَادٌ (mihad) means a place of rest, bed or floor and: غَوَاشٍ (ghawash) is the plural form of: (ghashiyah) which means something which covers. The sense is that for these people to rest, the bed and the top sheet will all come from Hell (an eloquent manner of putting the extreme severity of the punishment in everyday idiom). It will be noticed that at the end of the first verse, which mentions the deprivation from Paradise, it was said: وَكَذَٰلِكَ نَجْزِي الظَّالِمِينَ (And this is how We recompense the sinners). Then, in the second verse, which describes the punishment of Hell, it was said: وَكَذَٰلِكَ نَجْزِي الظَّالِمِينَ (And this is how We recompense the transgressors) because it is more severe than the former.
وَالَّذِيْنَ اٰمَنُوْا وَعَمِلُوا الصّٰلِحٰتِ لَا نُكَلِّفُ نَفْسًا اِلَّا وُسْعَهَآ
The third verse (42) mentions those who dutifully follow Divine injunctions as they are the people of Paradise and there they shall live forever.
Injunctions of the Shari’ah : Consideration of Convenience
But, along with the condition set forth for such people; that they believe and do good deeds – said there, in all mercy, was: لَا نُكَلِّفُ نَفْسًا إِلَّا وُسْعَهَا (Allah does not obligate anyone beyond his capacity). The purpose is to emphasize that good deeds – which is a condition for entry into Paradise – is really not something so difficult as would be beyond the ability of a man or woman. In fact, Allah Ta` ala has made the injunc¬tions of the Shari’ah flexible and easy in every department of life. Leaves and concessions have been granted in every injunction keeping sickness, weakness, travel and other human needs under consideration.
According to Tafsir Al-Bahr Al-Muhit, when human beings were commanded to do good deeds, the likelihood existed that they might find this a little heavy on them since doing what is good and required, everywhere and under all conditions, was beyond one’s capacity. Therefore, this doubt of theirs was removed through these words which ensure that the injunctions of Allah are given keeping in view the various stages of human lives and that they are appropriate to pre¬vailing conditions in all circumstances, for all time and all places. With such comprehensive consideration working behind these injunc¬tions acting according to them should not be difficult at all.
For its People, a Paradise minus Malice
In the fourth verse (43), two particular states of the people of Jan¬nah have been identified. The first one finds mention in: وَنَزَعْنَا مَا فِي صُدُورِهِم مِّنْ غِلٍّ تَجْرِي مِن تَحْتِهِمُ الْأَنْهَارُ; (And We remove whatever of malice they had in their hearts. Rivers will flow beneath them).
According to Sahih al-Bukhari, when believers would have crossed the Bridge of Sirat صِرَاط and their deliverance from Jahannam would have become certain, they would be stopped over a bridge between Jannah and Jahannam – to remove their malice first. If someone had some grudge against someone, or ill-will or a heart-burn on the loss of a right, all that will be mutually settled and washed off for good right there. So, when they go to Jannah, they will be free of malice, hatred, animosity and other personality disorders of the kind.
It appears in Tafsir Mazhari that this bridge will obviously be the last part of the Bridge of Sirat صِرَاط which is close to Jannah. ` Allama Al-Suyuti has also opted for this approach.
Then comes the issue of settling rights. It goes without saying that any loss of rights cannot be compensated by money for nobody would have it there. Instead of that, in accordance with a Hadith in al-Bukhari and Muslim, this payment will be made in the currency of deeds. Lost rights will be compensated by giving the deeds of the usurper to the owner of the right. And should it be that no more deeds are left with this person and there remain other rights which still have to be settled, then, the sins of the owner of the unsettled right will be transferred to the account of the usurper of the right.
In a Hadith, the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) has called the person, who did good deeds in his worldly life but remained negligent of the rights of people, the greatest pauper – for as a result of this neglect he lost all good deeds and stood there empty-handed.
In this Hadith narration, what has been described is but a general rule governing the fulfillment of rights and avenging an injustice in flitted. But, it is not necessary that everyone has to face this situation. In fact, according to the report of Ibn Kathir and Tafsir Mazhari, possi¬ble there would be the situation that no one settles scores and takes revenge, yet mutual malices get to be removed without anything like that.
This is what appears in some narrations. When people would have crossed the Bridge of Sirat, they would reach a stream of water and drink from it. The property of this water will be such as would remove all mutual malice from the hearts of all of them. While commenting on the noble verse: وَسَقَاهُمْ رَبُّهُمْ شَرَابًا طَهُورًا (And their Lord will give to them to drink a pure drink – 76:21 – AYA), the Tafsir of this verse given by Imam al-Qurtubi is not any different when he says that washed away from this water of Jannah shall be all grudges in hearts.
After reciting this verse, Sayyidna Ali al-Murtada (رض) ، once said: I hope that we – ` Uthman and Talhah and Zubayr and me – shall be among those whose hearts will be cleansed of malice before the entry into Paradise. (Ibn Kathir) These noble souls named here had their mutual disagreements during their life time in the world which had reached the limits of war.
The second state of the people of Jannah described in this verse is that on their arrival in Jannah, they will express their gratitude to Al¬lah Ta` ala that He guided them towards Jannah and made it easy for them to reach there. They will say that, had the grace of Allah not been with them, they would have never dared reach there.
This tells us that no one can go to Jannah by personal effort alone – unless the grace of Allah Ta` ala makes it possible for the aspirant. The reason is that even this ` effort’ itself is not within one’s control. That too comes through the grace and mercy of Allah Ta` ala alone.
Guidance has Degrees, the Last being the Entry into Paradise
Imam Raghib al-Isfahani (رح) ، who has explained Hidayah or guidance in a comprehensive manner as it appears in the Holy Qur’an, has said that guidance is a popular term but it has different degrees. The truth of the matter is that guidance is another name of finding the way to reach Allah Ta` ala. Therefore, the degrees of achieving nearness to Al¬lah are many and different and unending. Similarly, the degrees of guidance too are extremely varied and different from each other. The lowest degree of guidance is deliverance from Kufr and Shirk, and having ‘Iman. One on this degree of guidance has his or her orientation changed, away from the path of error – towards Allah.
Then, there is the distance between Allah Ta` ala and His servants. This distance takes a journey to cover – and every stage so covered has degrees, which is called Hidayah or guidance. Therefore, guidance is a need. At no time, can anyone claim not to need it, not even prophets and messengers of Allah. For this reason, the Holy Prophet صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم ، not only taught his people the lesson of: اهْدِنَا الصِّرَاطَ الْمُسْتَقِيمَ ﴿٦﴾ (Guide us in the straight path), but he himself kept making this prayer – because there is no end to the stages and ranks of nearness to Allah, so much so, that entry into the Paradise mentioned in this verse has been identified as Hidayah or guidance, for this is the last station of Hidayah.
وَبَيْنَهُمَا حِجَابٌ ۚ وَعَلَي الْاَعْرَافِ رِجَالٌ يَّعْرِفُوْنَ كُلًّاۢ بِسِيْمٰىهُمْ ۚ
When the people of Paradise will reach Paradise, where they belong, and the people of Hell, will reach Hell, where they belong, it is evident that the two places will be far apart from each other in all re¬spects. But, despite this being so, many verses of the Holy Qur’an con-firm that in between the two places, there will be points from where one could see the other, and engage in an exchange of conversation.
In Surah Al-Saffat, mentioned there are two persons who had known each other in their mortal life. But, one of them was a believer while the other, a disbeliever. In the Hereafter, when the believer will go to Paradise and the disbeliever, to Hell – they will notice each other and talk. Says the verse: فَاطَّلَعَ فَرَآهُ فِي سَوَاءِ الْجَحِيمِ ﴿٥٥﴾ (37:55): In brief, it means when the friend in Paradise will look for the friend in Hell, he will find him lying in the middle of it. He will curse him commenting that he wanted him to be ruined like him and had it not been for the grace of Allah, he too would have been found lying in Hell like him. Then he would remind him of his saying to him in the mortal world that there was to be no life, no accounting, no reward, and no punishment after death. He could now see for himself what was happening in reality.
Such dialogues, questions and answers exchanged between the people of Paradise and the people of Hell appear not only in the verses cited above, but continue after that as well, through almost one sec¬tion.
As for these access points in between Paradise and Hell from where inmates could be seen and addressed, these would really be a different kind of punishment for the people of Hell who would find themselves being reproached from all sides. Then, as they see the blessings being enjoyed by the people of Paradise, they will find them-selves burning in rage for having missed those – and burning in Hell they already will be. As for the people of Paradise, they will have another kind of comfort when, after seeing the plight of those in Hell, they will be more grateful for the blessings they had the good fortune of having. Then, they would remember people who mocked at them for believing and they could nothing against them, and when they see them disgraced and punished ultimately, they would have the last laugh at their undoing. The same thing has been said in Surah Al-Mutaffifin:
فَالْيَوْمَ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا مِنَ الْكُفَّارِ يَضْحَكُونَ ﴿34﴾ عَلَى الْأَرَائِكِ يَنظُرُونَ ﴿35﴾ هَلْ ثُوِّبَ الْكُفَّارُ مَا كَانُوا يَفْعَلُونَ ﴿36﴾
But, on this Day, those who believed will be laughing at the disbelievers. They will be on raised couches watching (the de¬nouement). Would have the disbelievers not been repaid for what they used to do? – 83:34-36.
Against the erring record of the people of Hell, admonition will also come from the angels. Addressing them, they will say:
هَـٰذِهِ النَّارُ الَّتِي كُنتُم بِهَا تُكَذِّبُونَ ﴿14﴾ أَفَسِحْرٌ هَـٰذَا أَمْ أَنتُمْ لَا تُبْصِرُونَ ﴿15﴾
This is the Fire that you used to belie. Then (look), is this a magic, or is it that you do not see? – 52:14-15
Similarly, it is in the first of the cited verses that the people of Par¬adise will tell the people of Hell that they found the promise of bless¬ings and comforts made by their Lord absolutely true and then they will ask them if the punishment against which they were warned actu¬ally came to them, or not. They will admit that they did see it.
In support of this question and answer between them, some angel shall, with the will of Allah, proclaim that cursed be the unjust who used to prevent people from the path of Allah and wished that their way too became crooked like their own and denied the Hereafter.
Who are the People of A` raf اَعرَاف ?
As a corollary of the dialogue between those in Paradise and Hell, there is something else pointed to in this verse – that there will be some people who had their deliverance from Hell but had not yet found entry into Paradise, though they did hope that they would. These peo-ple are called the people of A` raf.
What is A` raf? This is explained by the verses of Surah Al-Hadid (58). They tell us that there will be three groups of people on the day of Resurrection. (1) Declared disbelievers and polytheists who will never make it to the Bridge of Sirat, to begin with, because they will be thrown into the Hell through its doors before that stage comes; (2) be¬lievers who will have the light of Faith with them; and (3) hypocrites – since they have been tailing Muslims in the physical world, they will start behind them on the same trail. When they begin walking on the Bridge of Sirat, a dense darkness will overtake all of them.
The believ¬ers will still keep moving ahead with the help of their light of Faith while the hypocrites will call and ask them to stop and wait for them so that they could make use of the light they have. Thereupon, a caller for the sake of Allah will call: Turn back. Find your light there. The message given would be that the light they were seeking was the light of Faith and Righteous Deeds which could only be acquired at a place which they have left behind. Those who failed to acquire this light there through Faith and Deed shall not enjoy the benefit of that light here. In this state, a wall would be made to stand in between the hypo¬crites and the believers. The wall would have a gate. Beyond this gate, there will be nothing but punishment all over. Inside the gate there will be believers and the atmosphere will be filled with the mercy of Allah and the view of Paradise. This is the subject of the following
يَوْمَ يَقُولُ الْمُنَافِقُونَ وَالْمُنَافِقَاتُ لِلَّذِينَ آمَنُوا انظُرُونَا نَقْتَبِسْ مِن نُّورِكُمْ قِيلَ ارْجِعُوا وَرَاءَكُمْ فَالْتَمِسُوا نُورًا فَضُرِبَ بَيْنَهُم بِسُورٍ لَّهُ بَابٌ بَاطِنُهُ فِيهِ الرَّحْمَةُ وَظَاهِرُهُ مِن قِبَلِهِ الْعَذَابُ ﴿13﴾
The Day the hypocrites, the men and the women, will say to those who had believed: “Wait for us. Let us have a share from your light,” it will be said, “Return behind you, then seek light.” So, put between them will be a wall with a gate in it. Inside it, there will be mercy all over; and outside it, the Pun¬ishment face to face – 57:13.
In the verse quoted above, the wall which will be placed to separ¬ate the people of Paradise from the people of Hell has been called: سُور (sur). This word is primarily used for a security wall built around a ma¬jor city, usually made wide and fortified and posted where are army guards who stay in bunkers and remain vigilant against any enemies.
Verse 46 of Surah Al-A` raf says: وَبَيْنَهُمَا حِجَابٌ ۚ وَعَلَى الْأَعْرَافِ رِجَالٌ يَعْرِفُونَ كُلًّا بِسِيمَاهُمْ (And between the two groups there will be a partition). According to Ibn Jarir and other Tafsir authorities, in this verse, the word: حِجَاب (hijab) means the same wall which has been called: سُور (sur) in Salah Al-Hadid. The top portion of the wall is known as Al-A` raf because it is the plural form of ` Urf and ` Urf refers to the top portion of everything as it is distinct and recognizable from a distance. From this explana¬tion we know that the top portion of the partition wall between Para¬dise and Hell is the A` raf. Then, the verse of the Surah tells us that on the day of Resurrection there will be some people at this place who would be seeing the happenings in Paradise and Hell both and will be talking to people on both sides.
As for who these people shall be and why would they be made to stop here, it is something in which commentators differ and the narra¬tions of Hadith vary. But, what is sound, weighty and acceptable with the majority of commentators is that these people will be the ones whose good and bad deeds will come out equal in weight on the Scale of Deeds. So, because of their good deeds, they will have their deliver¬ance from Hell, but – because of their sins – they would have not been admitted into the Paradise yet. Finally, they too will find entry into Paradise because of the grace and mercy of Allah Ta` ala.
This is what Sayyidna Hudhayfah Ibn Masud and Ibn ` Abbas (رض) ، from among the Sahabah, as well as other Sahabah and Tabi’in say. Then, in it converge narrations of Hadith reported variously. Ibn Jarir reports from Sayyidna Hudhayfah (رض) that the Holy Proph¬et (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) was asked about the people of A` raf. He said: These are people whose good and bad deeds will be equal. Therefore, from Jahan¬nam they stand delivered. But, in Jannah they have not entered yet. They were stopped at this place of the A’raf until the process of accounting of deeds and the judgment is over. Their fate would be de¬cided after that and ultimately they will be forgiven and admitted into Jannah. (Ibn Kathir)
There is a narration from Sayyidna Jabir ibn Abdullah (رض) reported by Ibn Marduwayh in which it is said that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) was asked as to who were the people of A` raf? He said: They are people who took part in Jihad without the pleasure and permission of their parents and laid down their lives in the way of Allah. So, the disobedi¬ence to parents stopped them from entering into the Paradise and their shahadah in the way of Allah stopped them from entering into the Hell.
The two Ahadith quoted above have no element of contradiction. Instead of that, this Hadith is an example of those whose virtues and vices are equal in the same degree as here – martyrdom in the way of Allah on one side and disobedience to parents on the other. The scale is equal. (Ibn Kathir)
Salam Greetings: Blessed Legacy of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم)
After having gone through the description and definition of the people of A` raf, we can now take up the subject of the verse itself which says that the people of A` raf will call out the people of Paradise and say: ” سَلَامُ علیکم ” (Salamun Alaiykum). This word of greeting is also used in our present world when we meet each other. This is offered as a gift, a mark of respect and grace felt for the person so greeted. This is Mas¬nun, a way of Sunnah as practiced and recommended to his community by the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) . This is also said to the dead while visiting their graves. Then, it will also be the form of greeting on the plain of Resurrection, and in Paradise as well. But, a closer look at the verses of the Qur’an and the narrations of Hadith tells us that saying: اَلسلامُ عَلَیکُم (As-Salamu ` Alaiykum) is Masnun as long as we live in this world. Then, after having passed away from this mortal world, what is Masnun is saying: ” سَلَامٌ عَلَيْكُمْ ” (Salamun ` Alaiykum) – without the letters Alif and Lam at the beginning of Sal-am. The words to be said at the time of visiting graves as mentioned in the Qur’an also appear in this form, that is: سَلَامٌ عَلَيْكُم بِمَا صَبَرْتُمْ ۚ فَنِعْمَ عُقْبَى الدَّارِ ﴿٢٤﴾: Peace on you [ Salamun Alaiykum ] for that you observed patience. Then, fair is the ultimate abode – 13:24). And when the angels will receive the people of Paradise, this word appears in the same form there too: سَلَامٌ عَلَيْكُمْ طِبْتُمْ فَادْخُلُوهَا خَالِدِينَ (Salamun Alaiykum [ Peace on you ], you have done well. So, enter in it to live forever – 39:73). And here too, the people of A` raf will greet the people of Paradise with the same words: سَلَامٌ عَلَيْكُم (Salamun Alaiykum).
اِنَّ رَبَّكُمُ اللّٰهُ الَّذِيْ خَلَقَ السَّمٰوٰتِ وَالْاَرْضَ فِيْ سِتَّةِ اَيَّامٍ ثُمَّ اسْتَوٰى عَلَي الْعَرْشِ
Verse 54 begins with the statement that Allah has created the heavens and the earth and the planets and the stars and that they perform their functions under a firmly established system. The state¬ment releases an inevitable suggestion that the maker of this system has the most perfect power conceivable. This, in turn, invites every reasonable human being to think. Here is the most sacred Being who is capable of bringing this great universe from non-being to the state of being and who can keep it functioning through the wisest of systems. Why would it be difficult for him to undo everything and recreate it once again on the day of Qiyamah? For human beings, the best course is to stop denying the Qiyamah and turn to the same Being as their Rabb who is their Master and Nurturer. From Him they should seek what they need and Him alone they should worship. Let them come out of the quagmire of worshiping their own kind and recognize the truth. Said herein was: ` Surely, your Lord is Allah – Who created the heavens and the earth in six days.’
The Creation of the Heavens and the Earth: Why in Six Days?
A question arises here. We know that Allah Ta` ala has great power. He is capable of creating the whole universe in a single moment. The Holy Qur’an itself says so time and again. For instance, in Surah Al-Qamar, it is said: وَمَا أَمْرُنَا إِلَّا وَاحِدَةٌ كَلَمْحٍ بِالْبَصَرِ ﴿٥٠﴾ (And Our Command is but a sin¬gle Word, – like the twinkling of an eye – 54:50). Again, in Surah Ya Sin, إِذَا أَرَادَ شَيْئًا أَن يَقُولَ لَهُ كُن فَيَكُونُ (when [ Allah ] intends [ to create ] a thing it is said: “ Be” and it comes to be – 36:82). Why, then, would six days be spent in creating the universe?
Commentator of the Qur’an, Sayyidna Said ibn Jubayr رضی اللہ تعالیٰ عنہ has given an answer by saying that Allah is certainly capable of creat¬ing everything there is in a single moment, but Divine wisdom so de¬manded that the creation of our universe take six days so that human beings could be taught the lesson of graduation and perfection in run-ning the universal system. This is supported by a Hadith in which the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said: Working with deliberation, dignity and graduation is from Allah Ta` ala and hastening, from Shaytan. (Mazhari, with reference to Shu’ab al-‘iman by Al-Baihaqi)
The implication is that the attitude of rushing into doing things is not good for human beings. One cannot give due thought to and take into consideration all aspects of an issue at hand if driven by haste. An action taken in haste spoils what is done and brings remorse in the end. So, whatever is done with proper advance thinking and functional ease brings Barakah (blessing from Allah which enhances the efficiency and outcome of the Endeavour).
How were Days and Nights identified before the Creation of Earth, Heavens and Planets?
The second question is: The presence of the day and night is recog¬nized through the movement of the sun. But, before the birth of the earth and the heavens, when there was no sun and moon, on what basis comes the count of six days?
For this reason, some commentators have said that six days means a time duration equal to six days and nights as in the existing world. But, a much clearer approach is that the terminology of day and night, that is, what occurs from sunrise to sunset is day and what appears from sunset to the next sunrise is night, is a terminology used in this world. May be, before the birth of the universe, Allah Ta` ala had other signs determined for the day and night – as it would be in Paradise where the day and night will not depend on the movement of the sun.
This also tells us that it is not necessary that the six days during which the earth and the heavens were created, be equal to our six days. Instead, it is possible that they may be longer than these – as the Qur’an says about the day of ‘Akhirah which will be equal to one thousand years.
Abu ` Abdullah Razi has said that the movement of the far firma¬ment is so fast as compared to the movements of our earth that the raised step of a man running here has still to come down to touch the ground when the far firmament moves a distance of three thousand miles. (Al-Bahr Al-Muhit)
Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal and Mujahid say that six days here mean the six days of ‘Akhirah. The same view appears in a narration of Sayyidna ` Abdullah ibn ` Abbas (رض) reported by Dahhak.
And these six days during which the creation of the universe took place began, according to authentic narrations, from Friday and ended on Friday. On Yowm al-Sabt (the day of Sabbath), that is, Saturday, there was no work done on the creation of the universe. Some ` Ulama say that ` sabt’ means to discontinue. The day was named as Yowm al-Sabt because the work of creation was over by that day. (Tafsir Ibn Kathir)
Mentioned in this verse is the creation of the universe in six days. Its details appear in verses 9 and 10 of Surah Ha Mim As-Sajdah (Fussilat – 41:9, 10) saying that the earth was created in two days, then, created on the earth were, mountains, rivers, tributaries, trees, vege¬tation and things, human beings and animals could eat, in another two days. This comes to a total of four days. So, it was first said: خَلَق الاَرضَ فِی یَومین (created the earth in two days) and then it was said: قَدَّرَ فِيهَا أَقْوَاتَهَا فِي أَرْبَعَةِ أَيَّامٍ (and determined in it the measure of its sustenance in four days).
The first two days during which the earth was created are Sunday and Monday; and the other two days during which the mountains, riv¬ers and the life support systems of the earth were created are Tuesday and Wednesday. Thereafter, it was said: فَقَضَاهُنَّ سَبْعَ سَمَاوَاتٍ فِي يَوْمَيْ (that is, then We completed the seven heavens in two days – 41:12 ). As obvious, these two days will be Thursday and Friday. Thus, by Friday, this becomes a total of six days.
In the present verse (54), after mentioning the creation of the heavens and the earth, it was said: ثُمَّ اسْتَوَىٰ عَلَى الْعَرْشِ (then He positioned Himself on the Throne). The word: اِسْتَوَىٰ (Istawa), as followed by ‘ala (on) here, literally means to take position on, or to settle, or be established. The word: عَرْشِ (‘Arsh) means throne. Now, the question is what is this throne, the throne of the great Rahman, and how is it shaped or constituted, or is as it is – and what would the phenomena of positioning’ on it mean?
Regarding this, the safest creed to hold, that which is clear and correct, and fairly doubt-free too, is no other but that of the most right¬eous elders, the Sahabah and the Tabi` in – and later, that of many Sufi thinkers as well. The creed is that human reason is incapable of com¬prehending the reality of the Being and Attributes of Allah Jalla Sha’nuhu. Pursuing the knowledge of its exact reality is an exercise in futility, even harmful. One should believe, as a matter of general prin¬ciple, that the meaning intended by Allah Ta` ala – whatever it may be – is the one correct and true. And, in this process, one should not try to determine or worry about fixing a meaning on one’s own.
Someone asked the famous Imam Malik (رح) exactly the same question:
at is the meaning of: اسْتَوَىٰ عَلَى الْعَرْشِ (Istawa ` ala al-‘arsh : positioned Himself on the throne)? He paused for a while, then said: ` Everyone knows the meaning of ` Istawa and its particular nature and reality is such that human reason cannot comprehend it, and having faith in it is obligatory (Wajib), and asking a question about its nature and reality is Bid’ah (innovation in established religion) – because, the noble Sa¬habah, may Allah be pleased with them all, never asked such ques¬tions of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) . Great elders (Salaf), Sufyan Al-Thawriy, Imam Awza’i, Layth ibn Sa’d, Sufyan ibn ` Uyaiynah and ` Abdullah ibn Mubarak, may the mercy of Allah be upon them all, have said that the verses which have appeared in the Qur’an as related to the Being and Attributes of Allah Ta` ala should be believed in as they have come and exactly as they are, without any explanation, explication and interpretation. (Mazhari)
Said after that in the verse was: يُغْشِي اللَّيْلَ النَّهَارَ يَطْلُبُهُ حَثِيثًا (He covers the day with night which pursues it swiftly). The sense is that this alterna¬tion of the night and day is a phenomenon of revolutionary proportions in that it brings the whole world from light into the darkness, and from darkness into the light. Then, this very phenomena lends itself so swiftly and smoothly and obediently to the magnificent subduing pow¬er of Allah Ta` ala that the least delay is not caused (in this transfor¬mation on such an unimaginable scale).
After that, it was said: وَالشَّمْسَ وَالْقَمَرَ وَالنُّجُومَ مُسَخَّرَاتٍ بِأَمْرِهِ that is, Allah creat¬ed the sun and the moon and the stars in a state that all of them are moving in obedience to His will and command.
For a reasonable person, this is an invitation to think, to think about things made by the made he observes around him all the time. Experts make machines of all sorts. Some of them would have engi¬neering problems right from the start. Others may not have such prob¬lems, but machines are machines, no matter how strong the base ma¬terial and how impeccable the design. Parts have their normal wear and tear, or need for adjustment, repairs, servicing. Machines become idle until fixed. It might take weeks, or months, to put them back to work. But, look at these God-made machines. The efficiency and the perfection with which they started working from day one is still there. They are working wonderfully non-stop. Their movement is as precise as ever, not a second fast or slow. There is no wear and tear of parts and no need to go to a workshop. The reason is that they are function¬ing ` subject to His command’ (مُسَخَّرَاتٍ بِأَمْرِهِ ). In other words, they need no source of energy to move them, no engine to make them function. They are working only under Divine Command. They are subjected to that alone. Therefore, the emergence of the slightest malfunction in them is impossible. But, of course, when the Absolute Master Himself decides to eliminate them at a time appointed by Him, this entire system would disintegrate. That day will be the day of Qiyamah.
After having pointed out some examples, the description of the Ab¬solute Subduing Power of Allah Ta` ala was put in the form of a general rule by saying: أَلَا لَهُ الْخَلْقُ وَالْأَمْرُ (Beware, for Him alone is the creation and the command). The word: خَلق (khalq) means to create and: اَمر (amr), to command. The sense is that being the Creator and the Master is exclu¬sive to Him. Other than Him, no one else can create the most insignifi¬cant of things, nor does anyone have the right to subject anyone to his command (except that Allah Ta` ala Himself delegates a particular area of activity to someone, in which case that too would be, in reality, nothing but the command of Allah). So, the verse means that creating all these things was the work of none but Him, and putting them into service was also not something anyone else could handle, for that too is an spectacle of the perfect power of Allah Ta` ala.
In Sufi thought, ` Khalq’ and ` Amr’ are two domains. ` Khalq’ relates to matter and ` Amr’ to the refined abstract. The Qur’anic verse: قُلِ الرُّوحُ مِنْ أَمْرِ رَبِّي (Say, “The soul is a command from my Lord.” – 17: 85) points out in this direction as “Ruh” (soul, spirit) has been identified as a com¬mand from the Lord. The sense of the creation and the command being exclusive to Allah Ta` ala would, in this light, mean that everything be¬tween the heavens and the earth is from matter and its creation has been called “Khalq.” And what is beyond these, free from matter, its creation has been called “Amr.” (Mazhari)
At the end of the verse, it was said: تَبَارَكَ اللَّـهُ رَبُّ الْعَالَمِينَ (Glorious is Allah, the Lord of the worlds). The word: تَبَارَک (tabarak) appearing here is a derivation from barakah which means to increase, grow, become more, remain, sustain, besides being employed in many other shades of meaning. At this place, ` tabaraka’ means to be high and supreme. It can be taken in the sense of high and sustaining, for Allah Ta` ala is both. The sense of high finds confirmation in a sentence of the Hadith which says: تَبَرَکتَ وَ تَعَلَیتَ یَا ذَا الجلالِ وَ الاِکرَامِ (You are blessed and high, 0 Mas¬ter of Glory and Honour). Here, the word: ` tabarkta’ has been ex¬plained by the word: ta` aiaita which follows.
اُدْعُوْا رَبَّكُمْ تَضَرُّعًا وَّخُفْيَةً ۭاِنَّهٗ لَا يُحِبُّ الْمُعْتَدِيْنَ
Mentioned in previous verses were particular manifestations of the perfect power of Allah Ta` ala, and His major blessings. The present verses lead us to consider: When He is the Master of perfect power, the sender of all blessings, and the Lord of all the worlds, it naturally fol¬lows that He should be the One to be called upon and prayed to under all circumstances, whether in distress or in need. The attitude of by-passing Him and turning towards some other direction is ignorance and failure.
Along with it, identified in these verses are some rules of etiquette to be followed when making Du’a’ (prayer, supplication). If due consid¬eration is given to these rules, the hope that a prayer will be answered increases.
The Meaning and Etiquette of Du` a and Dhikr
The word: دُعَاء (Du’a’ ), in the Arabic language, means to call upon someone to remove one’s need. It is also used to remember in the absolute sense. Both meanings can be taken here. The verse says: اُدعُوا رَبَّکُم (Supplicate to your Lord) that is, call your Rabb for your needs, or remember your Rabb and worship Him.
In the first case, it would mean: Ask Allah alone for what you need. In the second case, the sense would be: Do your Dhikr and ` Ibadah for Him alone. Both these explanations have been reported from Tafsir authorities among the early righteous elders.
After that, it was said: تَضَرُّعًا وَخُفْيَةً (humbly and secretly). The word: تَضَرُّعً (tadarru`) means realization of inability, humility, and submission in a refined spirit of self-abasement (not found in the English language and its modern, secular, cultural context). And the word: خُفْيَةً (khufyah) means secret, secluded, or private (as opposed to open and public – as used in English too, but with no relevance to the dominant sense of se¬cret in English bearing on the mysterious, the occult, and the whole field of espionage).
In the frame of these two words, described there are two important rules of etiquette which govern Du` a’ and Dhikr. First of all, in order that Du’a’ be answered, it is necessary that one appears before Allah Ta` ala as weak, helpless and simply unable to hold on his own, modest and humble, and submits to Him with a total negation of what is supposed to be pride, dignity, honour, ego, or self-view – and then makes Du’a’. Du’a’ is a thing of the soul which requires that its words match the feebleness and humbleness of the maker of Du` a’, that the manner of saying it remains a mirror of modesty, and that this overall humili¬ty should ooze forth from the very physical approach to this making of Du’a’. Given this anatomy and profile of Du’a’, the common practice of making Du` a’ these days cannot really be called the making of Du’a’. It would, rather, be the reading of it.
What happens most of the time is that we do not know what we are saying and it has become a routine as we notice in common Masajid. Imams would usually say, rather read, some words of Du` a’ in the Arabic language which they have memorized and do this at the end of Salah. Most of the time, in some areas, the Imams themselves do not know the meaning and sense of what they say – and even if they do know it, at least the less-knowing participants of the congregation are virtually unaware of what is being said. They would almost mechanically go on saying ‘Amin, ‘Amin’ after the words read by the Imam without having any clue as to what was being said there. The outcome of all this stage demonstration is the vocalization of some words. Du` a’ has a reality of its own which is just not there. Then, this is an entirely different matter that Allah Ta` ala, in His infinite mercy, may accept these very lifeless words and give them the effect of answered prayers. But, it is necessary that everyone un-derstands that Du` a’ is not ` read.’ It is ` asked.’ Therefore, it is crucial that one asks as one should, properly, as due.
Then, there is another aspect of Du’a-‘. If a person does know the meanings of the words of his Du` a’ – and even understands what he is saying – still, if it is not accompanied by proper approach, manner and physical bearing, the Du` a’ stands reduced to a bland claim to which no created servant of Allah is entitled.
So, given in the first word was the spirit of Du’a’ which requires that one shows his humility and prays to Allah for what he needs. Then, in the second word, the instruction given is that the asking in Du` a’ for what one needs should be done secretly and in a lowered voice which is superior in merit and more likely to be answered. The reason is that making Du` a’ in a raised voice is not free of three possible drawbacks. Firstly, it is difficult to maintain modesty and humility in doing so. Secondly, there is the danger of hypocrisy and desire for recogni¬tion creeping in through this mode. Thirdly, the manner in which this Du’a is made only goes to show that the person making it almost does not know that Allah Ta` ala is All-Hearing, All-Knowing. He knows what we show on the outside and also that which we conceal inside. He hears everything said quietly or loudly. Therefore, when the voice of the Companions reached a loud pitch during Du’a’ made on the occa¬sion of the Battle of Khaybar, the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said: ` You are not calling someone deaf or absent that you say it in such a loud voice. Instead, your addressee is someone Hearing, Near, that is, Allah Ta` ala (so, to raise your voice is redundant). Allah Jalla Sha’nuhu has Himself mentioned the Du` a’ of a righteous person in these words: إِذْ نَادَىٰ رَبَّهُ نِدَاءً خَفِيًّا ﴿٣﴾ (When he called his Rabb calling in a lowered voice – 19:3).’ This tells us that the state of Du` a’ liked by Allah Ta` a1a is that it be asked of Him in a lowered and subdued voice.
Sayyidna Hasan al-Basri (رح) says: There is a difference of seventy de¬grees in making Du` a’ openly and loudly when matched by the one made in a lowered voice. It was the habit of early righteous elders that they would exert to their maximum in Dhikr and Du’a which kept them busy most of the time, but their voice was not heard by anyone. In fact, their supplications would remain between them and their Rabb. Many of them would memorize the whole Qur’an and keep engaged in reciting it, but others would not know about it. Then, there would be others engaged in their pursuit of advanced religious knowl-edge, but they would never go about telling others that they were do¬ing so. There would be many others who would return from their homes after having long sessions of Salah but no one would come to know anything about that. He also said that he had seen such blessed people who would never perform ` Ibadat, which they could do in pri¬vate, out in the open where people could see them – and their voices during Du’a’ would be very low. (Ibn Kathir, Mazhari)
Ibn Jurayj has said that raising voices in Du` a’ and making it noisy is Makruh (reprehensible). In his Ahkam al-Qur’an, Imam Abu Bakr al-Jassas (رح) has said: This verse tells us that making Du’a’ in a lowered voice is more merit-worthy than making it in a raised voice. It has been reported likewise from Hadrat Hasan Basri (رح) and Sayyidna Ibn ` Abbas (رض) . This verse also tells us that the ‘Amin’ said at the end of Surah al-Fatihah should also be said in a lowered voice, which is more merit-worthy, because ‘Amin’ ( Amen : so be it) is also a Du’a-‘.
May Allah Ta` ala guide Imams of Masajid in our time who seem to have forgotten this teaching of the Qur’an and Sunnah and the in¬structions of early righteous elders in this matter. After every Salah, what follows as Du` a’ has become an artificial procedure. Some words are read out loudly which, besides being contrary to the etiquette and rules of Du` a’, become the source of disturbing the Salah of those who joined the congregation after it had started and were busy completing the missed part after the Imam had finished. The overwhelming influ¬ence of custom has made them incapable of noticing its drawbacks. On a particular occasion where the purpose is to have a whole group make a particular Du’a’, one person may say the words of Du` a’ in a reasonably audible voice and others say ‘Amin’ after it, then, it does not matter. However, the condition is that this activity does not become the source of disturbance in the Salah and ` Ibadah of others – and that this does not become a matter of habit and custom whereby common people start believing in it as the standard method of making Du` a’, as hap¬pening so commonly these days.
What has been said above concerned the making of Du` a’ for one’s needs. If Du’a-‘ is taken in the sense of Dhikr (remembrance) and ` Ibadah (worship) at his place, then, according to the established posi¬tion of early ` Ulama, low-voiced Dhikr is more merit-worthy than loud Dhikr. As for the practice of Shaykhs in the Chistiah Order who recommend loud Dhikr for beginners, they do so in view of the spiritual condition of the seeker, as a measure of treatment, so that by voicing it any lack of alertness would go away and the heart would learn to become attuned to the Dhikr of Allah – otherwise, raising the voice in Dhikr, as such, is not desirable even with them, though it is permissi¬ble, and its justification stands proved from Hadith as well, of course, subject to the condition that, in it, there be no hypocrisy or the desire to show off (riya’ ).
Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal, Ibn Hibban, Al-Baihaqi and others have reported from a narration by Sayyidna Sa’d ibn Abi Waqqas (رض) that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said:
خَیرُ الذِّکرِ الخَفِیُّ وخَیرُ الرِّزقِ مَا یَکفِی
‘The best Dhikr is hidden and the best sustenance is what be-comes ‘ sufficient.’
However, under particular conditions and timings, a voiced Dhikr is actually more desirable and merit-worthy. Details of these timings and conditions have been explained by the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) through his word and deed, for example, calling Adhan and Iqamah with a raised voice, reciting the Qur’an during the voiced prayers with a raised voice, saying the Takbirs of Salah the Takbirs of Tashriq, the Talbiyah in Hajj etc., with a raised voice. Therefore, Muslim jurists, may Allah have mercy on them all, have reached the decision that in particular conditions and places where the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) has, by word or deed, taught us to raise the voice, voices must be raised. Under conditions and situations other than these, voiceless Dhikr is most preferable and beneficial.
At the end of the verse, it was said: إِنَّهُ لَا يُحِبُّ الْمُعْتَدِينَ (Surely, He does not like those who cross the limits). The word: الْمُعْتَدِينَ (al-mu` tadin) is a derivation from I` tida’ which means to cross the limits. The sense is that Allah Ta` ala does not like those who cross the limits, exactly as given in the translation. This crossing of limits, whether in Du` a’ or some other activity, has the same outcome – that Allah Ta` ala does not like that. In fact, if looked at closely, the religion of Islam is the very name of observing limits and restrictions and electing to submit and obey. Take the example of Salah، Sawm, Hajj, Zakah and all dealings and transactions, when limits set by the Shari` ah of Islam are crossed in them, they do not remain acts of worship anymore – instead, they become sin.
Crossing the limits in Du` a’ may take several forms. Firstly, that literal formalities, such as rhyming and other stylistic devices, are em¬ployed in Du` a’ which may spoil its essential ingredients of humility and submission. Secondly, that unnecessary restrictions are intro-duced in Du` a – as it appears in Hadith that Sayyidna ` Abdullah ibn Mughaffal (رض) saw that his son was making Du` a’ in the following words: ` 0 Allah, I seek from You the palace in Paradise which is white in colour and located on the right hand side.’ He stopped him and said: ` Making such restrictions in Du` a is crossing the limit, which has been prohibited in the Qur’an and Hadith.’ (Mazhari from a narration of Ibn Majah and others)
The third form of crossing the limits is that someone makes a Du` a’ wishing ill of Muslims in general, or asks from Allah something which is harmful for them. Similarly, it is also a form of crossing the limits – as mentioned here – that Du` a’ be made in a raised voice without the need to do so. (Tafsir Mazhari, Ahkam al-Qur’an)
وَلَا تُفْسِدُوْا فِي الْاَرْضِ بَعْدَ اِصْلَاحِهَا وَادْعُوْهُ خَوْفًا وَّطَمَعًا
In the second verse (56), it was said: وَلَا تُفْسِدُوا فِي الْأَرْضِ بَعْدَ إِصْلَاحِهَا (And do no mischief on the earth after it has been set in order). Two antonyms have appeared here: صَلَاح (salah) and: فَسَاد (fasad). ‘Salah’ means the state of being good, correct, right, proper or set in order as in the translation. Then, Fasad refers to the state of evil, corruption, mis¬chief, disorder. Imam Raghib al-Isfahan has said in his Mufradat al-Qur’an that Fasad refers to something going beyond the limits of mod¬eration, whether this crossing over is insignificant or enormous, and the measure of an increase or decrease in every Fasad depends on this crossing of the limits of moderation. The farther the limits are crossed, Fasad will increase. Fasad means to make things bad and Islah means to correct, reform or put into order. Therefore, the verse: وَلَا تُفْسِدُوا فِي الْأَرْضِ بَعْدَ إِصْلَاحِهَا means: ` do not make things bad on the earth after that Allah has made it good and proper.’
Imam Raghib has also said: There are several forms in which Allah Ta` ala makes something right, correct and proper. Firstly, He began by creating them right, correct and proper, as in: وَ اَصلَحَ بَالَھُم ‘ (He will improve their condition – 47:2). Secondly, removed was the corruption that had entered into something, as in: یُصلِح لَکُم اَعمَالَکُمُ (That He may make your deeds good and right – 33:71). Thirdly, that a command is given to put things in order. This verse carries a command of abstention from mis¬chief on the earth after it has been set in order. Here, the ordering of the earth may be taken in two senses. Firstly, the outward propriety that it was made arable and capable of growing trees with rains made to come from clouds resulting in flowers and fruits as gifts from plants and trees – and that the earth was made the source of life support for human beings and animals.
The second sense is that Allah Ta’ala set things right on the earth inwardly and spiritually – by sending His messengers and Books and instructions and purifying it from Kufr and Shirk and error. It is quite possible that the verse means both inward and outward order in a to¬tal way. Thus, the verse would now mean that Allah Ta’-al-a has put the earth in proper order both physically and spiritually and now you should not create disorder or engineer evil in there through your acts of sin and disobedience.
What is Order or Disorder on the Earth and at have Sins of People to do with it?
The way there are two aspects of order (Islah), the outward and the inward, or the physical and the spiritual, in the same way, there are two aspects of disorder (Fasad) also. As for the outward or physical order of the earth is concerned, that it be right and proper, it will be re¬alized that Allah Ta’ala has made it to be a mass or body which is neither liquid as water making it difficult to settle down upon it, nor is it hard as rock or iron which could not be dug up. It has been created to be in a middle state so that human beings could make it soft and smooth lending itself to being farmed and become capable of growing plants and trees and flowers and fruits. Then, they could also dig it up to sink wells and make moats and canals, lay strong foundations for houses to live; and then, right in and out of the earth, He created things and circumstances which would help habitat the earth, make vegetation, trees, flowers and fruits grow in it; and then, from the outside, He created wind, light, heat and chill, and made water rain through clouds over it so that trees could grow. And brought in service were stars and planets from where warm and cold rays were cast on them which filled flowers and fruits with colour and juice. Human be¬ings were endowed with intelligence through which they dug up raw materials from the earth, like iron, copper, wood and so many other metals and rocks which they harnessed into a new world full of indus¬tries and artifices. This is the outward ordering of the earth which was brought into effect by the perfect power of Allah Ta` ala.
As for the inward and spiritual ordering of life is concerned, it de¬pends on the remembrance of Allah (Dhikr), relationship with Allah تَعَّلُق مَع اَللہ (Ta’alluq ma’ Allah) and on obedience to Him اِطَاعَت (Ita` ah). For this, to begin with, Allah Ta` ala has already placed in the heart of every human being a basic substance and urge to remember and to obey Him: أَلْهَمَهَا فُجُورَهَا وَتَقْوَاهَا (Then, He inspired it [ that is, inspired the soul or heart in¬stinctively ] as to its wrong and as to its right -91:8). So, all around hu¬man beings not a particle remains in which Allah Ta` ala has not placed wonders of His perfect power and His astounding creativity, seeing which, even a person of average understanding would be moved to say: فَتَبَارَكَ اللَّـهُ أَحْسَنُ الْخَالِقِينَ (So blessed be Allah, the Best to create! – 23:14). Other than these manifestations, He sent His messengers, revealed His Books through which the essential linkage between the Creator and the created was fully established.
Thus, the command given is that now that the earth has been placed in proper order, outwardly and inwardly, let it not go bad through human misdeeds.
As pointed out earlier, like Islah or order having two aspects, Fasad or disorder also has two aspects, the outward and the inward. This saying of Allah Ta` ala forbids both.
Though the recurring insistence of the Qur’an and the Holy Proph¬et (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) is on spiritual order as a cardinal duty which, in effect, aims to stop any emergence of spiritual disorder as a counter possibili¬ty. But, in the world we live in, the linkage between the order and dis¬order of the physical and spiritual is such that any disorder in one becomes the source of disorder in the other. Therefore, when the Shari’ ah of the Qur’an has blocked the doors of spiritual disorder, it has also prohibited physical disorder. Theft, robbery, murder and all ways of immodesty and indecency create all sorts of physical and spiritual dis¬order in the world. So, stern restrictions were placed and punishments proposed particularly against such evil acts while common sins and crimes were also prohibited – because, every sin becomes the source of physical disorder at some time, and that of spiritual disorder at some other. And, if looked at closely, every outward disorder becomes the cause of inward disorder, and conversely, every inward disorder be-comes the source of outward disorder.
That outward or physical disorder becomes the inevitable source of inward or spiritual disorder is obvious, for it is the contravention of the command to obey Divine injunctions – in fact, disobedience to Allah Ta` ala is another name for spiritual disorder. As for the chemistry of spiritual disorder and how it transforms itself as the cause of physical disorder, this can be discerned only through a little serious reflection. The reason is that this whole world and everything big and small in it was created by the Master of the domain of creation to wherever it ex-tends, and it is but subservient to His command. So far as human be¬ings remain obedient to Allah, everything stands harnessed into their service as due and proper. But, when human beings start disobeying Allah Ta` ala, everything in the world starts disobeying human beings from behind a curtain through which they cannot see with their mor¬tal eyes. But, it is by deliberation into the effects, properties, results and outcomes of these things that one does find the relevant proof of their becoming hostile very conclusively.
If taken with a surface view, human beings keep using all these things normally. When water goes down the throat, it does not refuse to quench thirst; food does not stop removing hunger and dress and home do not disappoint them by refusing to provide defence against heat and chill.
But, when looked at in terms of the ultimate outcome, it would ap¬pear that none of these things is fulfilling its assigned job – because, the real function and use of all these things is that they should provide peace and comfort, that anxieties are removed and sicknesses are cured.
Now if you look at conditions prevailing in our world, you will real¬ize that, despite the proliferation of things of comfort and the means and materials of curing diseases much beyond any expectations, the majority of human beings is victimized by extreme distresses and dis¬eases. Never-known diseases and ever-new calamities seem to be the order of the day. No one, not even the highest among human beings, is contended and in peace in his or her station of life. In fact, the more these functional facilities and fruits of skill keep increasing in their output, the more increasing becomes the parallel manifestation of dis-eases, anxieties, disasters and hardships – very much like the saying in Urdu which means: ` The more they treat you, the more sick they make you.’
If modern man bewitched by the magic of energy and its material gains were to rise a little above his infatuation with things and tech¬nology, he will realize that all our efforts to invent and construct things and to lay the foundations of a society on top of them have flatly failed to give us peace and comfort which was our real purpose. There is no reason for this but that inward disorder we have been talking about which means that we have started disobeying our Rabb, our Creator and Master, so His creation has started disobeying us on the inward front – that it refuses to provide real peace and comfort for us, despite all our efforts at break-neck speed. To this the famous Maula¬na Rum’ pointed out by saying that the elements of dust, air, water and fire, though they appear inert and sans sense yet, in reality, they too do possess a degree of intelligence which makes them work under the command of their Master.
To sum up, it can be said that sin, heedlessness towards Allah Ta` ala, and disobedience to Him do not only create spiritual disorder, but they also lead to the inevitable physical disorder. When the same Maulana Rumi’ says that the cloud does not come to rain when you stop paying Zakah while from Zina (adultery) results an epidemic affecting all directions. This is no poetic imagination. This is a reality authenti¬cally supported by the Qur’an and Hadith. But, what becomes visible in this world is just a light sample of the ultimate punishment in the form of diseases, epidemics, storms, hurricanes and floods.
Therefore, included in the sense of the verse: لَا تُفْسِدُوا فِي الْأَرْضِ بَعْدَ إِصْلَاحِهَا (And do no mischief on the earth after it has been set in order) are crimes and sins which cause disorder in the world physically and out¬wardly – and also included there are sin, disobedience, and heedless¬ness towards Allah Ta` ala. Therefore, immediately after in this verse, it was said: وَادْعُوهُ خَوْفًا وَطَمَعًا (And supplicate to Him in fear and hope). It means that it should be done in a way that, on the one hand, one has the fear of the Du` a.’ remaining unanswered, while on the other hand, one has full hope tied to His mercy. These very twin attitudes of fear and hope are the two wings of the human soul on its journey with truth and fortitude. On these it flies high and through these it reaches superior ranks destined for it.
Then, as the text obviously shows, the degree of fear and hope should be equal. Some ` Ulama have said that it is appropriate to keep fear dominate during life with health, so that there be no shortcoming in being obedient. And when comes the time to die, it is better to let hope dominate, because the strength to do what should have been done is not there anymore and there is nothing left to do except hope for the mercy of Allah Ta’ ala. (Al-Bahr Al-Muhit)
And some researchers among scholars have said that the purpose is to hold on to the straight path of religion and be constant in obedi¬ence to Allah Ta` ala. Then, the temperaments and tastes of human be¬ings differ. Some achieve this station of fortitude and constancy in obe¬dience by keeping fear as the dominant factor. Others achieve these by keeping love and hope as dominating factors. So, whoever finds help’ to achieve this purpose through either of these two options, should try to achieve it through that option.
To summarize the comments made about Du` a’, it can be said that the first verse tells us about two rules of etiquette relating to Du’a’: (1) That it be with humility and submission, and (2) that it be secret and low-voiced. These two qualities belong to the outward human physique – because “tadarru”‘ suggests that one should, while making Du` a’, as¬sume the looks and manners of someone weak, helpless and needy and should never allow it to be proud, arrogant or seemingly need-free. Then, that it be secret also relates to one’s speech through the mouth and tongue.
As for the spiritual etiquette of Du’a’ as given in this verse, there are two rules to be followed. These relate to the human heart. They require that the person making the Du` a’ should feel the danger in his heart that his Du’a’ may, perhaps, remain unanswered while, at the same time, he should also hope that his Du’a’ may be answered – because becoming careless about one’s errors and sins is contrary to ‘Iman (faith) and losing hope in the infinite mercy of Allah Ta` ala is Kufr (disbelief). Both are impermissible extremes. The hope that a prayer will be answered can be entertained only when one keeps in be¬tween the two states of fear and hope.
Then, at the end of the verse, it was said: إِنَّ رَحْمَتَ اللَّـهِ قَرِيبٌ مِّنَ الْمُحْسِنِينَ (Surely, the mercy of Allah is close to the good in deeds). The hint giv¬en here is that, though there should be the two states of fear and hope present while making a Du` a’, but, out of the two states, the option of hope is the weightier option – because the prayer is being made to the Lord of all the worlds the extent of Whose mercy cannot be conceived, and in whose generosity and favour there is no shortage or reluctance. He can answer the Du` a’ of the worst of offenders, even the Du’a’ of the Satan himself. Of course, should there be a danger of Du` a’ remaining unanswered, that could only be possible on account of one’s own mis¬deeds or due to the hanging curse of sins – because being good in deeds is necessary to become close to the mercy of Allah Ta` ala.
Therefore, the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) has said that some people travel long distances, look like faqirs and raise their hands for Du` a’ before Allah Ta` ala, but حَرَام haram is their food and حَرَام haram is their drink and حَرَام haram is their dress. So, how can a Du` a’ made by such a person be answered? (Muslim, Tirmidhi from Sayyidna Abi Hurairah)
According to another Hadith, the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said: The prayer of a servant of Allah keeps finding acceptance until such time that he does not pray for some sin or for the severance of some re¬lationship – and that he does not make haste. The noble Companion asked about the meaning of ` making haste.’ He said: It means that one may think – here I am making a Du` a’ for all this time and it has not been answered yet – until he becomes disappointed and stops making Du` a’. (Muslim, Tirmidhi)
According to yet another Hadith, the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said: Whenever you make Du` a’ before Allah Ta` ala, do it in a state when you have no doubt about its being answered.
It means that one should keep his or her sight on the most exten¬sive mercy of Allah Ta’ ala and let the heart believe that the prayer be¬ing made shall be answered. This is not contrary to the danger one may feel that his or her sins may become an impediment in the accep¬tance of one’s Du` a’. صلی اللہ تعَالیٰ علی نَبِیِّنَا وسلم
وَهُوَ الَّذِيْ يُرْسِلُ الرِّيٰحَ بُشْرًۢا بَيْنَ يَدَيْ رَحْمَتِهٖ ۭ
In previous verses, Allah Ta` ala has mentioned some of His major and particular blessings. By pointing out to the creation of the heavens and the earth, the day and night, and the sun, moon and stars and how they serve human beings, the lesson driven home is that there is no power other than the sacred Being of Allah Ta` ala to take care of our needs and comforts, then, it becomes necessary that we should pray to none but Him for everything we need and take this turning to Him as the key of our success.
Also mentioned in the first of the present verses are some other im¬portant blessings of this nature on which depends the existence and survival of human beings and the entire creation of the earth, for example, the rains and the trees, and farmlands and its produce. The dif¬ference is that the previous verses mentioned blessings relating to the upper domain while the present ones belong to the lower. (A1-Bahr Al-Muhit)
Something special has been identified in the second verse where it is said that these great Divine blessings are, though common to all parts of the earth – as rains, when they come, fall on rivers and moun¬tains and on good and bad lands alike – but, what grows from the earth grows only from the land which has the quality to make it grow. Rocky and sandy lands do not derive benefit from these rains.
The conclusion drawn from the first verse is that the sacred Being which enables dead land to live again should have no problems in making human beings who once lived, then died, come to life once again. The conclusion so drawn is very clear. Then, there is another conclusion drawn from the second verse. It tells us that the guidance coming from Allah Ta` ala, the revealed Books, the blessed prophets, and the teachings and training undertaken by their deputies, the ` Ulama’ and Mashaikh are like the rains, common to every human be¬ing. But, the way every land does not derive benefit from the mercy of rains, very similarly, the benefit of this spiritual rain is derived by those who have the ability to absorb it. As for those whose hearts are like rocky and sandy land not having the ability to absorb it and make growth possible, they would keep sticking to their ways of error despite clear guidance and signs and scriptures.
The conclusion thus drawn comes from the last sentence of the second verse which says: كَذَٰلِكَ نُصَرِّفُ الْآيَاتِ لِقَوْمٍ يَشْكُرُونَ (Thus We alternate the verses for a people who pay gratitude). The sense is that the statement made was, though for everyone, yet, in the ultimate consequence, it proved beneficial only for those who had the capacity for it and real¬ized its worth and value. Thus, the two verses quoted here cover the subject of human origin and return. Now, we can go to a fuller explanation of these two verses. The first verse begins by saying: وَهُوَ الَّذِي يُرْسِلُ الرِّيَاحَ بُشْرًا بَيْنَ يَدَيْ رَحْمَتِهِ (And He is the One who sends the winds carrying good news before His blessings). Here, the word: رِیح (ar-riyah) is the plural form of rih which means the wind, and ` bushran’ means good news or glad tidings, and ` rahmat’ refers to the rain of mercy, that is, it is Allah Ta` ala Himself who sends the winds to announce the good news of the coming rain of mercy.
The sense of the verse is that it is the customary ‘practice of Allah Ta` ala that He sends cool winds before the actual coming of rains which not only please people, but also, in a way, foretell that rains are coming much before they actually do. Therefore, these winds are a combination of two blessings. They themselves are beneficial for human beings and bracing for the creation in general. Then, they an¬nounce the rains before its coming. Human beings are a highly sensi¬tive model of creation. Rains may stop them from doing what they need to do. If they could naturally find out about the coming rains ahead of time, they would be able to manage things for themselves. In addition to that, one’s own person and belongings are not, at all times, defended against rains. By having early indications of rains, most would be able to take protective cover for themselves and their belong¬ings.
Then, it was said: حَتَّىٰ إِذَا أَقَلَّتْ سَحَابًا ثِقَالًا (until when they lift up the heavy clouds). The word: سَحَّاب (sahib) means the cloud and: ثِقَال (thiqal) is the plural of thaqil which means heavy, that is, when the winds lift up the heavy clouds. Heavy clouds refer to clouds laden with water. They would, as if, travel riding on the shoulders of the wind, and thus, this water weighing thousands of tons comfortably rides high on the wings of the wind. How wonderful is the Divine design which uses no machines nor lets human beings slave for it. It is as simple as it can be – when Allah Ta` ala wills, vapours from the waters start rising upwards, turn into clouds and what you have is a sky-filling plane carry¬ing a cargo of hundreds and thousands of gallons of water in its holds flying on the cushion of winds towards higher altitudes!
After that, it was said: سُقْنَاهُ لِبَلَدٍ مَّيِّتٍ : (We drive them to a dead land). The word: سُوق (sauq) means to drive, herd or urge on towards a desired destination, and ` balad’ means a town or habitation, and ` mayyit’ means dead.
The verse, thus, means: ` When the winds lifted the heavy clouds up, We drove the clouds to a dead town.’ Dead town refers to the habi¬tation rendered desolate because of an scarcity of water. That a town or habitation has been named here in place of a common open land is appropriate in view of the real purpose of sending the rain because it is designed to feed the thirsty land and enable it to produce what hu¬man beings need. The place to do so would be a habituated area, not an inhabituated forest primarily where the growth of vegetation is less likely to serve the initial purpose.
Upto this point, the description in the quoted verses proves the fol¬lowing: (1) That rains come through clouds, as commonly observed. This tells us that verses in which raining from the sky has been men¬tioned, there too, the word: سَمَاء (sama’ ) refers to clouds. Then, not im-probable is the likelihood that clouds originate directly from the skies – as opposed to monsoons originating from the waters – and bring rains. (2) That clouds go in a particular direction and over a particular land area is something related directly to Divine command. It is He who gives the command for rains to fall when He wills, where He wills and as much as He wills. The clouds implement the Divine command.
It is something observed everywhere. There are occasions when a town or habitation would have heavy over-head clouds, and they would very much be in need of rains, but the clouds would not let them have even a drop of water. Instead, it would go to a town or habitation for which there is a quota of water as Divinely determined, and it would be only there that it would rain. No one has the ability or the daring to acquire water from these clouds at any other place, other than the town or habitation earmarked to have it.
Weather scientists have determined rules about the movement of monsoons based on which they can tell the course of a monsoon rising from the waters of the sea and identify where and how much it would rain. There are meteorological bureaus set up for this purpose in many countries. But, experience shows that news released by these depart-ments frequently turn out to be contrary to fact. When what is con¬trary is the Divine command itself, their rules become ineffective. Winds and rain-laden clouds turn towards somewhere else, contrary to foretold news, and weather experts cannot do much about it.
In addition to that, any other rules and regulations proposed by meteorologists, they too are not contrary to the proposition that the movement of clouds obeys the Divine command – because it is the cus¬tomary practice of Allah Ta` ala that, in all affairs of this world, the Divine command manifests itself from behind the curtains of physical causes. Human beings pick up these very causes and formulate some rule or regulation based on them. Otherwise, reality lies elsewhere.
After that, it was said: فَأَنزَلْنَا بِهِ الْمَاءَ فَأَخْرَجْنَا بِهِ مِن كُلِّ الثَّمَرَاتِ (We pour down water, then, with it We bring forth of all the fruits).
And then, at the end of the verse, it was said: كَذَٰلِكَ نُخْرِجُ الْمَوْتَىٰ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَذَكَّرُونَ (This is how We bring forth all the dead [ on the day of Qiyamah ], so that you may observe advice). Thus, the sense of the verse is: ` The way We have given new life to the dead land and have brought out from it trees, flowers and fruits, similarly, on the day of Qiyamah, We shall have the dead rise once again after their having been dead. And these examples have been set forth so that you would have the opportunity to reflect and deliberate.
According to a narration of Sayyidna Abu Hurairah (رض) the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said: صُور (Sur : Horn) will be blown twice on the day of Qiyamah. On the first صُور Sur, the whole world will perish. Nothing will remain alive. On the second صُور Sur, a new world will come into being. The dead will become alive.’ The Hadith also mentions ` an interval of forty years between the two blowings of the صُور Sur and rains would continue to fall throughout these forty years. During this peri¬od, the body parts of every dead human being and animal will become assembled into them giving everyone a complete skeleton. Then, at the time of the blowing of the second صُور Sur, رُوح Ruh (soul) will enter these corpses. They will rise alive.’ A major portion of this narration can be seen in Al-Bukhari and Muslim. Some portions have been taken from Kitab al-Ba’ th of Ibn Abi Dawud.
وَالْبَلَدُ الطَّيِّبُ يَخْرُجُ نَبَاتُهٗ بِاِذْنِ رَبِّهٖ ۚ وَالَّذِيْ خَبُثَ لَا يَخْرُجُ اِلَّا نَكِدًا ۭ
Stated in the second verse (58) is: وَالْبَلَدُ الطَّيِّبُ يَخْرُجُ نَبَاتُهُ بِإِذْنِ رَبِّهِ ۖ وَالَّذِي خَبُثَ لَا يَخْرُجُ إِلَّا نَكِدًا (As for the good land, its vegetation comes out with the permis¬sion of its Lord. And that which is bad does not grow except what is bad). The word: نَكِد (nakid) refers to something useless and scanty both. The sense of the verse is that the mercy of rain, when it comes, is com¬mon to every town and land, but lands are of two kinds in terms of their yield and outcome. First, there is good land which helps growth. From it come flowers and fruits and many other benefits. Then, there is the hard, barren or saline land which lacks the ability to grow plants. First of all, not much grows on such a land, and if something does grow there, its quantity remains insignificant, and even this quantity is useless and bad.
At the end of the verse, it was said: كَذَٰلِكَ نُخْرِجُ الْمَوْتَىٰ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَذَكَّرُونَ (Thus We alternate the verses for a people who pay gratitude).
The hint given here is: Though the open blessing of Allah’s guid¬ance and His clear ‘Ayat is open and common to all human beings very much like the general mercy of rain, but every land does not derive benefit from the rain and, similarly, every human being does not de-rive benefit from Divine guidance. Rather, the benefit is derived by only those who are grateful for what they receive and recognize its real worth and value.
لَقَدْ اَرْسَلْنَا نُوْحًا اِلٰي قَوْمِهٖ فَقَالَ يٰقَوْمِ اعْبُدُوا اللّٰهَ مَا لَكُمْ مِّنْ اِلٰهٍ غَيْرُهٗ ۭ
Described from the beginning of Surah al-A` raf upto this point were the subjects of Tauhid, Risalah and ‘Akhirah, the basic principles of Islam. These were proved and affirmed in different ways, people were persuaded to follow them and warned against taking opposing stands. Then, as a corollary, the guiles of Satan which make people go astray were mentioned. Now, from the eighth Ruku` (section) to almost the end of the Surah, there is a description of some prophets, may peace be upon them, and of their communities. The subject dealt with here con¬sists of the commonly pursued principles of Tauhid, Risalah and ‘Akhirah. They all invited their respective communities towards these universal principles, gave them the good news of rewards for those who believed in them, and warned them of punishments for refusing to believe and the sad end they would have for doing so. This description takes about fourteen sections, where hundreds of basic and subsidiary rulings appear as a corollary. Thus, the present communities were given an opportunity to learn a lesson from the sad end of past communi¬ties – and, for the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) this became a source of comfort that this was how things have been with all other prophets.
The verses appearing above take a whole Ruku` of Surah al-A` raf. It describes the mission of Sayyidna Nuh (عليه السلام) and the state of the community to which he was sent.
Though, in the chain of prophets, the first prophet is Sayyidna Adam (عليه السلام) ، but his was not the time for confrontation against disbe¬lief and error. In the religious code given to him, most of the injunc¬tions were related to habitation of the land and management of human needs. Disbelief and disbelievers just did not exist. The confrontation against Kufr (disbelief) and Shirk (associating partners in the Divinity of Allah) began with Sayyidna Nuh (عليه السلام) . He is, in terms of the mis¬sion of prophethood and a code of religious laws, the first rasul of Al¬lah. In addition to that, people who survived after the drowning of the whole world during the great flood or deluge, were Sayyidna Nuh (عليه السلام) and those with him in the Ark. It was through him that the new world was populated. Therefore, he is also referred to as the junior Adam. This is the reason why he appears first in this story of prophets which has a description of his nine hundred and fifty year long pro¬phetic struggle in contrast to the crooked ways of the majority in his community, as a result of which, all except a few believers were drowned. Details follow.
The first verse begins with the words: لَقَدْ أَرْسَلْنَا نُوحًا إِلَىٰ قَوْمِهِ (Surely We sent Nuh to his people).
Sayyidna Nuh (عليه السلام) is in the eighth generation of Sayyidna Adam (عليه السلام) . According to a narration of Sayyidna Ibn ` Abbas (رض) appearing in Mustadrak of Hakim, there is an interval of ten Qarn between Sayyidna Adam (عليه السلام) and Sayyidna Nuh (عليه السلام) . The same has been reported by Tabarani as based on a Hadith of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) narrated by Sayyidna Abu Dharr (رض) (Tafsir Mazhari). A Qarn generally means one hundred years. Therefore, the interval of time between these two comes to be one thousand years according to this narration. Ibn Jarir has reported that Sayyidna Nuh (عليه السلام) was born eight hundred and twenty six years after the death of Sayyidna Adam (عليه السلام) ، and according to a clear statement of the Qur’an, he reached an age of nine hundred and fifty years – and according to a Hadith, the age of Sayyidna Adam عليه السلام is nine hundred and sixty years. Thus, the time from the birth of Sayyidna Adam (عليه السلام) to the death of Sayyidna N-uh (عليه السلام) comes to be a total of two thousand eight hundred and fifty six years. (Mazharl) In some narrations, the real name of Sayyidna Nuh (عليه السلام) appears as Shakir while in some others it has been given as Sakan, and ` Abd al-Ghaffar, in still others.
Whether his time is before or after Sayyidna Idris (عليه السلام) – Enoch – has been debated. The majority of the Sahabah have said that Sayyidna Nuh عليه السلام has appeared before Sayyidna Idris (عليه السلام) (A1-Bahr Al Muhit)
Based on a narration of Sayyidna Ibn ` Abbas (رض) عنہما reports Mustadrak of Hakim that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said: Nuh (عليه السلام) was invested with prophethood at the age of forty years and, after the Flood, he lived for sixty years.
The verse of the Qur’an: لَقَدْ أَرْسَلْنَا نُوحًا إِلَىٰ قَوْمِهِ (Surely, We sent Nuh to his people) proves that Sayyidna Nuh (عليه السلام) was sent as a prophet only to his people. It was not common to the whole world. His people lived in Iraq. They were outwardly civilized but were involved in Shirk. The call given by Sayyidna Nuh (عليه السلام) to his people was: اعْبُدُوا اللَّـهَ مَا لَكُم مِّنْ إِلَـٰهٍ غَيْرُهُ إِنِّي أَخَافُ عَلَيْكُمْ عَذَابَ يَوْمٍ عَظِيمٍ (0 my people, worship Allah. For you there is no god other than Him. I fear for you the punishment of a great Day). In the first sentence, the invitation given is to worship Allah Ta` ula, which is the essence of the principle. In the second sen¬tence, people have been persuaded to shun Shirk and Kufr, something which had spread out like some epidemic among these people. In the third sentence, the purpose is to warn people against the danger of that great punishment which they would have to face in the event they were to do otherwise. This ` great punishment’ could mean the punish¬ment of the Hereafter, and the punishment of the Flood in the present world too. (Tafsir Kabir)
اَوَعَجِبْتُمْ اَنْ جَاۗءَكُمْ ذِكْرٌ مِّنْ رَّبِّكُمْ عَلٰي رَجُلٍ مِّنْكُمْ لِيُنْذِرَكُمْ وَلِتَتَّقُوْا وَلَعَلَّكُمْ تُرْحَمُوْنَ
Here, the answer given was: أَوَعَجِبْتُمْ أَن جَاءَكُمْ ذِكْرٌ مِّن رَّبِّكُمْ عَلَىٰ رَجُلٍ مِّنكُمْ لِيُنذِرَكُمْ وَلِتَتَّقُوا وَلَعَلَّكُمْ تُرْحَمُونَ ﴿٦٣﴾ (Do you wonder that an advice from your Lord has come to you through a man from among you, so that he may warn you and that you may fear Allah, and that you may be blessed with mercy?) [ that is, his warning may lead you to stop opposing him as a result of which you may be blessed with mercy ]
The substance of the argument is that the making of a human be¬ing a messenger of Allah is not a matter of surprise. First of all, Allah Ta` ala is the Absolute Master. Bestowing on someone the status of a prophet or messenger is His exclusive domain. It is He who does it at His will. No one is in a position to dare have it otherwise. In addition to that, a little deliberation will make it clear that the purpose of send¬ing a prophet or messenger to guide human beings can only be achieved through a human being. This is a mission angels cannot perform.
The reason is that the purpose of prophethood is to bring people round to believe in and obey Allah Ta` ala and save them from harsh consequences of their opposition to His injunctions – and this can only be possible when a person from their own kind presents before them a model of the desired conduct and shows before them that it is quite possible to worship Allah and obey His injunctions even with the ful¬fillment of inherent human needs and desires. If this call was brought forth by angels and they were to put their model before people, it is ob¬vious that people would have found it fairly convenient to say that an-gels are free of human desires, they are never hungry or thirsty, they never sleep, or get tired. How could they ever become like them? But, when one of their own kind, despite having common human character¬istics and desires, walks amongst them as a perfect model of obedience to Divine injunctions, they would be left with no excuse.
It was to point out in this direction that it was said: لِيُنذِرَكُمْ وَلِتَتَّقُوا (so that he may warn you and that you may fear Allah). In other words, it means that a person whose warning can make people have fear could only be the one who is of their kind and is an epitome of human traits like them. This is not an unusual doubt for the disbelievers of many communities who have questioned the propriety of having a human be¬ing as prophet or messenger. This is the answer given by the Qur’an to all such doubts. It is certainly regrettable that, despite so many clarifi¬cations of the Qur’an, there are people who would dare going to the limit of denying the ` humanness’ of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) . But, the problem with the ignorant among human beings is that they would not understand this reality and would simply refuse to accept the superiority of anyone from their own kind. This is why they would nurse hatred for their contemporary Awliya’ (men of Allah) and ` Ulama’ (highly trained and trustworthy religious scholars who prac¬tice what they teach) and look down upon them because of their contemporaneousness. This has always been the trademark of the ignor¬ant.
When this paternal and well-wishing approach of Sayyidna Nuh (عليه السلام) in reply to the heart-rending words said by his addressees made no effect on these unfeeling people who turned blind to truth and kept belying it, then, Allah Ta` ala sent down upon them the punishment of Flood
It was said: فَكَذَّبُوهُ فَأَنجَيْنَاهُ وَالَّذِينَ مَعَهُ فِي الْفُلْكِ وَأَغْرَقْنَا الَّذِينَ كَذَّبُوا بِآيَاتِنَا ۚ إِنَّهُمْ كَانُوا قَوْمًا عَمِينَ ﴿٦٤﴾ (Then, they belied him [ ignoring his good counsel totally ], so [ as a consequence ], we saved him, and those with him in the Ark, and drowned those who had belied Our signs. Certainly, they were a blind people).
The story of Sayyidna Nuh (عليه السلام) and the full account of the drowning of his people and the deliverance of the people in the Ark ap¬pears in Surah Hud and Surah Nuh. Given at this place is its gist as appropriate to the occasion. Sayyidna Zayd ibn Aslam رحمۃ اللہ علیہ says: When the punishment of Flood overtook the people of Sayyidna Nuh (عليه السلام) they were at the prime of their population and power. The lands and mountains of Iraq were becoming insufficient for their rising numbers. It should be kept in mind that it is a customary practice of Allah Ta` ala since ever that He would keep granting respite to the dis-obedient. He would send His punishment over them at a time when they have reached the highest peak of their numbers, power and wealth, and become, so to say, drunk with this state of their life. (Ibn Kathir)
As for the number of people in the Ark of Sayyidna Nuh (عليه السلام) ، reports differ. Ibn Kathir, through a narration of Ibn Abi Hatim, reports from Sayyidna ` Abdullah ibn ` Abbas (رض) that there were eighty people. One of them was called Jurhum. He spoke Arabic. (Ibn Kathir)
Some narrations have given the detail that there were forty men and forty women in the Ark. After the Flood, the place in Mosul, Iraq where they came to stay became known as Thamanun (eighty).
To sum up, the introduction of a brief account of Sayyidna Nuh (عليه السلام) at this place aims to tell us three things: (1) That the da’wah of all past prophets and their basic articles of faith were one. (2) That Allah Ta` ala supports his appointed messengers in strikingly wondrous ways when they would not have the least danger to their security even after having been surrounded by a Flood rising as high as the peaks of mountains. (3) Then, it was made absolutely clear that belying the no¬ble prophets of Allah, may peace be upon them, amounted to inviting Divine punishment. The warning is still valid. So, let it not be forgotten that the way past communities were overtaken by punishment because of their belying of the prophets, a similar fate could overtake their modern counterparts – on this count, they could do better by not becoming heedless and fear-free.
وَاِلٰي عَادٍ اَخَاهُمْ هُوْدًا ۭقَالَ يٰقَوْمِ اعْبُدُوا اللّٰهَ مَا لَكُمْ مِّنْ اِلٰهٍ غَيْرُهٗ ۭ اَفَلَا تَتَّقُوْنَ
A Brief History of ` Ad and Thamud
` Ad is the name of a person who is in the fifth generation after Sayyidna Nuh (عليه السلام) and is among the progeny of his son Sam. Then, his progeny, and his people, came to be known by the name of ` Ad. In the Holy Qur’an, ` Ad also appears with the words: عَادَ اُولٰی (‘Ad al-‘ula: ` Ad, the First) and also: إِرَمَ ذَاتِ الْعِمَادِ that is, of the city of Iram with lofty pillars; or tall like lofty pillars – 89:7) which tells us that the people of ` Ad are also known in association with the name of Iram, and that with ` Ad I, there is some ` Ad II as well. In this investigation, commentators and historians differ. The better known proposition is that Iram is the name of the grandfather of ` Ad. This ` Ad is among the children of ‘Aus who was his son, and is known as ` Ad I. His second son, جَثو (Jathw) had a son. His name was Thamud. He is called ` Ad II. The outcome is that ` Ad and Thamud are both two branches of Iram. One of them is called ` Ad I and the other is known as Thamud or ` Ad II, and the word: اِرَم (Iram) is common to both ` Ad and Thamud.
Some commentators have said that at the time when the punish¬ment overtook the people of ` Ad, a deputation of theirs was on a visit to Makkah al-Mu` zzamah, which remained safe from this punishment. It is known as the other ` Ad. (Bayan al-Qur’an)
Hud (عليه السلام) is the name of a prophet. He is also in the fifth genera¬tion of Sayyidna Nuh (عليه السلام) and is among the progeny of Sam. The genealogical tree of the people of ` Ad and Sayyidna Hud (عليه السلام) converges on Sam in the fifth generation. Therefore, Sayyidna Hud (عليه السلام) is a lineal brother to ` Ad. That is why it was said: اَخَاھُم ھُوداً (their brother Hid – 65)
The people of ` Ad had thirteen families. Their habitations were spread out from Oman to Hadramaut and Yaman. Their lands were fertile. Gardens were abundant. To live they constructed mansions and palaces. They were tall and heavily built. This is what the expres¬sion زَادَكُمْ فِي الْخَلْقِ بَسْطَةً (gave you increased strength in physique – 69) means. Allah Ta` ala had opened the doors of His blessing upon them. But, their crooked thinking made these very blessings a curse for them. They became so intoxicated with their power and grandeur that they started boasting: مَنْ أَشَدُّ مِنَّا قُوَّةً (Who is superior to us in strength?-41:15). How strange of them that they took no notice of their Lord and the Lord of the worlds bathed in whose blessings they all were and went on to sink themselves into the worship of idols carved out of rocks!
The Lineage of Sayyidna Hud (عليه السلام) and Some Glimpses of the Background
These were the people for whose guidance Allah Ta` ala sent Sayy¬idna Nuh (عليه السلام) as a prophet who was from their family. The famous authority on Arab genealogy, Abu al-Barak-at al-Jauni has written that the name of the son of Sayyidna Hud rx..ll., 1c is Ya’ rub ibn Qahtan who went to live in Yaman. Yamani people are his progeny. The Arabic lan¬guage originated from him and it was this correspondence with ‘Ya’rub’ that the language was called Arabic and its speakers, the Ar¬abs. (al-Bahr Al-Muhit)
But, the truth of the matter is that the Arabic language was there since the time of Sayyidna Nuh (عليه السلام) . In his Ark, he had a compan¬ion called Jurhum. He spoke Arabic (A1-Bahr A1-Mubit). The populating of Makkah al-Mu` azzamah started from this very Jurhum. However, it is possible that the origination of the Arabic language took place in Ya¬man through Ya’rub ibn Qahtan and this may be what Abu al-Barakat has meant.
Sayyidna Hud induced the people of ` Ad to forsake idol-worship and take to pure monotheism and shun injustice and oppres¬sion and practice moderation and justice. But, these people were drunk with power and wealth. They did not listen to him. Consequent¬ly, the first punishment that visited them was that rains stopped com¬ing for a full three years in succession. Lands became deserts. Gardens turned into dead wood. But, these people still kept sticking to Shirk and idol-worship. Then, came another punishment. A severe wind storm overtook them. It continued for eight days and seven nights. What remained of their gardens and mansions and palaces was levelled to the ground. Their men and animals went up into the air and zoomed back hitting the floor on their heads. Thus, the people of ` Ad were eliminated to the last man. The sense of the expression: وَقَطَعْنَا دَابِرَ الَّذِينَ كَذَّبُوا (and we eradicated those who belied Our signs) in this verse, as determined by some commentators, is that all those people present at that time were totally destroyed. Some other commentators have said that it means that Allah Ta` ala cut off the lineal root of the people of ` Ad for the future as well.
When the punishment for not listening to Sayyidna Hud (عليه السلام) and insisting on Kufr and Shirk came down upon his people, he and his companions took refuge in an open area enclosed with stakes. It was strange that the stormy winds which were making palaces collapse on their columns would suddenly change pace and enter this enclosure gently. Sayyidna Hud (عليه السلام) and his companions kept sitting peacefully where they were even during the descension of the punish¬ment without having to face any inconvenience. It was after the de¬struction of the people of ` Ad that they moved to Makkah al-Mu` azzamah where they lived until death. (A1-Bahr Al-Muhit)
That the punishment for the people of ` Ad came in the form of a wind storm has been explicitly and categorically mentioned in the Qur’an. Then, there is the statement in Surah Al-Mu’minun which fol¬lows the narration of the story of Sayyidna Nuh (عليه السلام) ثُمَّ أَنشَأْنَا مِن بَعْدِهِمْ قَرْنًا آخَرِينَ ﴿٣١﴾ that is, then, after them, We brought forth another generation – 23:31. It seems obvious that another generation here means the people of ` Ad. Then, after having given a view of their word and deed, it was said: فَأَخَذَتْهُمُ الصَّيْحَةُ بِالْحَقِّ (an extremely harsh and horrifying sound [ As-Saihah ] took them – 23:41). Based on this statement of the Qur’an, some commentators have said that the punishment which was set upon the people of ` Ad was that of As-Saihah (extremely harsh and screaming sound). But, there is no contradiction here. It is possible that they both came to pass.
This was a brief account relating to the people of ` Ad and Sayyidna Hud (عليه السلام) . Its details as given in the words of the Qur’an follow.
(1)-Said in the first verse (65) was: وَإِلَىٰ عَادٍ أَخَاهُمْ هُودًا ۗ قَالَ يَا قَوْمِ اعْبُدُوا اللَّـهَ مَا لَكُم مِّنْ إِلَـٰهٍ غَيْرُهُ ۚ أَفَلَا تَتَّقُونَ , (And to ` Ad [ We sent ] their brother, Hud (عليه السلام) . He said, “0 my people, worship Allah; you have no god other than Him. So, do you not fear Allah?” ).
The grave punishment sent upon the people of Sayyidna Nuh (عليه السلام) much before the people of ` Ad was still alive in the minds of the people of his time. Therefore, Sayyidna Nuh (عليه السلام) had no need to describe the severity and gravity of punishment sent upon disobedient people. He considered it quite sufficient to say: Do you not fear Allah?
وَاِلٰي ثَمُوْدَ اَخَاهُمْ صٰلِحًا ۘ قَالَ يٰقَوْمِ اعْبُدُوا اللّٰهَ مَا لَكُمْ مِّنْ اِلٰهٍ غَيْرُهٗ
These verses tell us about Sayyidna Salih and his people, the Thamud. The account of the people of Sayyidna Nuh (عليه السلام) and Sayyidna Hud (عليه السلام) has appeared earlier. Similar introductions of past prophets and their peoples, highlighting the call of truth given by prophets and the disbelief and denial of their peoples, and the terrible consequences that overtook them continue to be the main subject as far as the end of Surah al-A` raf.
In the first of the four verses cited above (73), it was said: وَإِلَىٰ ثَمُودَ أَخَاهُمْ صَالِحًا (And to Thamud, [ We sent ] their brother, Salih). Earlier, in the account given about the people of ` Ad, it was stated that ` Ad and Thamud is the name of two persons who are among the progeny of the same grandfather. The children of these two also came to be known by their name and their two groups became two separate peoples. One of them was called the people of ` Ad and the other, the people of Thamud. They lived in the north-western part of Arabia. Their main city was called Hijr which is now known as Madain Salih. Like the people of ` Ad, the people of Thamud were also wealthy, powerful, brave and artistically inclined. They were skilled in sculpture and architecture. Besides making palaces on open grounds, they were known to hew out moun¬tains and create living spaces and structures on and inside them. In his book, ` Ard al-Qur’an, Maulana Sayyid Sulaiman Nadvi has said that their architectural momentous still exist. They have Iramic and Thamudic inscriptions carved on them.
It generally happens that worldly wealth and high living would es¬trange people away from the remembrance of their Creator and the ul¬timate encounter with Him in the Hereafter and push them on to the ways of error – as was the case with the people of Thamud.
Not forgotten by the world of the time, though, was the punish¬ment of Flood that came upon the people of Sayyidna Nuh (عليه السلام) . Then, for them, the destruction of their brethren, the people of ` Ad was current history. But, wealth and power have a pull of their own. No sooner does one affluent structure collapse on its foundation, there comes another person, another group who would raise a higher struc¬ture on the same foundation totally ignoring what had happened before. When the people of ` Ad were destroyed, the people of Thamud inherited their mansions and lands and it was at the same places they erected their venues of luxury, places where their own brethren had faced destruction. And as if this was not enough, they started indulg¬ing in the same deeds as were done by the people of ` Ad. They too became heedless of their Creator and unmindful of the Hereafter only to stoop to the level of worshiping idols and associating others in the Di¬vinity of Allah. Then, Allah Ta` ala – in accordance with His constant practice – sent Sayyidna Salih (عليه السلام) as His messenger so that he would guide them on to the straight path. Sayyidna Salih (عليه السلام) in terms of his lineage and country, was one of the people of Thamud as he too came from the progeny of Sam. Therefore, the Qur’an has called him a brother of the people of Thamud – as in: اَخَاھُم صٰلِحاً (their brother,
Salih – 73). The call given by Sayyidna Salih (عليه السلام) to his people is no different from the call messengers from Sayyidna Adam (عليه السلام) to the last of them have been giving all along – as mentioned in the Qur’an: وَلَقَدْ بَعَثْنَا فِي كُلِّ أُمَّةٍ رَّسُولًا أَنِ اعْبُدُوا اللَّـهَ وَاجْتَنِبُوا الطَّاغُوتَ (We have sent to every community a messenger so that he tells them to worship Allah and shun idols – 16:36). This is what Sayyidna Salih (عليه السلام) said to his people, just as it was done by past prophets: يَا قَوْمِ اعْبُدُوا اللَّـهَ مَا لَكُم مِّنْ إِلَـٰهٍ غَيْرُهُ (0 my people, worship Allah. You have no god other than Him).
Then, along with it, he also said قَدْ جَاءَتْكُم بَيِّنَةٌ مِّن رَّبِّكُمْ that is, now there has come to you from your Lord a very clear sign. This ` sign’ refers to the unusual she-camel which finds a brief mention in the present verse while details appear in different Surahs of the Qur’an. The background of this event concerning the she-camel goes back to the time when Sayyidna Salih (عليه السلام) started preaching as a young man. He kept doing his duty until marks of old age started showing on him. He still did not seem to give up. His people became impatient with his re¬peated efforts to make them believe in one God. So they decided to come up with a demand which it would be impossible for him to fulfill and, as a result, they would prevail as winners of the confrontation. The demand that they made was: If you are really a messenger of Al¬lah, make a she-camel come out from Katibah, this hill of ours, and it has to be in its tenth month of pregnancy while being strong and healthy.
The first thing Sayyidna Salih (عليه السلام) did was to take a pledge from them. He asked them if he fulfilled this demand of theirs, would they all believe in him and in his Da’wah. When all of them made a compact, Sayyidna Salih (عليه السلام) made two raka’at of Salah and made a Du` a’ before Allah Ta` ala: For You nothing is difficult. Let their demand be fulfilled. Soon after the Du` a’, there was a rumble in the hill, a big rock blasted out, and out came a she-camel as demanded.
Seeing this mind-boggling miracle of Sayyidna Salih (عليه السلام) ، some from among those people became believers instantly. As for the rest of them, they too decided to enter the fold of faith they have been reject¬ing upto that time. But, some of their chiefs who were the real promot¬ers of idol-worship, talked them out of it. When Sayyidna Salih (عليه السلام) saw that his people had broken the pledge, he was concerned for them. The danger was that they might be subjected to punishment for hav¬ing done that. Thus, feeling for them, he advised them not to harm the she-camel in any way, and keep protecting it, in which case, they may stay safe against the danger of punishment, otherwise, they might be seized in punishment immediately. This is the subject matter of what has been said in the following sentences of verse 73: هَـٰذِهِ نَاقَةُ اللَّـهِ لَكُمْ آيَةً ۖ فَذَرُوهَا تَأْكُلْ فِي أَرْضِ اللَّـهِ ۖ وَلَا تَمَسُّوهَا بِسُوءٍ فَيَأْخُذَكُمْ عَذَابٌ أَلِيمٌ ۔ (This is the she-camel of Allah, a sign for you. So, leave her to eat on the earth of Allah and do not touch her with mischief, lest a painful punishment should seize you). This she-camel has been called ` the she-camel of Allah’ because it was a proof of the perfect power of Allah and had appeared in an extra-ordinary manner as a miracle of Sayyidna Salih (عليه السلام) . The expres¬sion: تَأْكُلْ فِي أَرْضِ اللَّـهِ (to eat on the earth of Allah) indicates that the she-camel should be left free to eat and drink because what she would eat and drink was not owned by them. The earth belonged to Allah and He was the creator of the produce it yielded. So, she was to be left free to eat from the natural grazing grounds of the earth of Allah.
The well from which the people of Thamud got their water was the one from which this she-camel got her share of water to drink. But, when this she-camel, an extra ordinary creation of Allah, drank her share of water, she would drink up all the water in the well. Sayyidna Salih (عليه السلام) had, following the Divine will, given the verdict that the she-camel would drink water from the well one day and the next day the rest of Thamud people will have water from the well for themselves. It so happened that the day the she-camel drank water from the well, others would get milk from the she-camel, in lieu of water, in such quantity that they would fill out their water containers with it. This distribution of water has been referred to elsewhere in the Qur’an in the following words addressed to Sayyidria Salih (عليه السلام) وَنَبِّئْهُمْ أَنَّ الْمَاءَ قِسْمَةٌ بَيْنَهُمْ ۖ كُلُّ شِرْبٍ مُّحْتَضَرٌ ﴿٢٨﴾ (54:28) that is, the water of the well is to be divided between them, one day for the she-camel and the other for his people, and this distribution will be watched by angels lest anyone does against it.’ In another verse (26:155), it was said: قَالَ هَـٰذِهِ نَاقَةٌ لَّهَا شِرْبٌ وَلَكُمْ شِرْبُ يَوْمٍ مَّعْلُومٍ ﴿١٥٥﴾ that is, ` this is a she-camel of Allah; water for one day is her right and water for the other day is fixed for you’.
وَاذْكُرُوْٓا اِذْ جَعَلَكُمْ خُلَفَاۗءَ مِنْۢ بَعْدِ عَادٍ وَّبَوَّاَكُمْ فِي الْاَرْضِ
In the second verse (74), concern has been shown for these pledge-breaking and contumacious people lest they find themselves subjected to Divine punishment. For this purpose they have been reminded of the favours and blessings of Allah Ta` ala upon them in the hope that they would alter their uncompromising stance and abandon their dog¬gedness and rebellion. It was said: وَاذْكُرُوا إِذْ جَعَلَكُمْ خُلَفَاءَ مِن بَعْدِ عَادٍ وَبَوَّأَكُمْ فِي الْأَرْضِ تَتَّخِذُونَ مِن سُهُولِهَا قُصُورًا وَتَنْحِتُونَ الْجِبَالَ بُيُوتًا (And remember when He made you successors after ` Ad and lodged you on earth [ whereby ] you make castles in its plains and hew out the mountains into houses). Here, the word: خُلَفَاءَ (khulafa’ ) is the plural of khalifah which means deputy or vice-regent and: قُصُور (qusur) is the plural of قَصر qasr which means a palace or palatial building. The word: تَتَّخِذُونَ (tanhituna) is a derivation from naht which means sculpture or stone-carving. جِبَال ` Jibal’ is the plural of jabal meaning a mountain. ` Buyut’ is the plural of bayt which denotes a house or rooms in it. The sense of the verse is that they should remem¬ber the blessing of Allah Ta` ala that He, after the destruction of the people of ` Ad, brought them to settle in their place, gave their lands and homes to them as the new owners, and bestowed on them the skill with which they could raise big palaces on open surfaces and hew out mountains to make rooms and apartments inside them. Then, at the end of the verse, it was said فَاذْكُرُوا آلَاءَ اللَّـهِ وَلَا تَعْثَوْا فِي الْأَرْضِ مُفْسِدِينَ (So be mindful of the bounties of Allah, and do not go about the earth spreading disorder).
Injunctions and Rulings
Some fundamental and subsidiary rulings emerge from the cited verse. These are as follows:
(1) There is a unanimous agreement of all prophets, may peace be upon them all, on fundamental articles of faith and, similarly, united stand their religious codes or Shari’ahs. All of them invite towards Tauhid or absolutely pure monotheism as the basis of worshiping Al¬lah, and they all warn against contravention of this concept which brings punishment in this world and in the Hereafter.
(2) It has happened in past communities too that the wealthy and the traditional holders of social prestige have not said yes to the call of prophets as a result of which they were disgraced and destroyed in this world and became deserving of punishment in the Hereafter as well.
(3) According to Tafsir al-Qurtubi, this verse tells us that the bless¬ings of Allah in this world are directed to and shared by disbelievers as well – as was the case with the people of ` Ad and Thamud to whom Al¬lah Ta` ala had given great wealth and power.
(4) According to Tafsir al-Qurtubi, once again, this verse tells us that palaces and mansions are blessings of Allah Ta` ala and their making is permissible.
However, this is an entirely different matter that the noble proph¬ets and the men of Allah have not favoured them as they make people heedless. The sayings of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) about high rising buildings are of this nature.
قَالَ الْمَلَاُ الَّذِيْنَ اسْتَكْبَرُوْا مِنْ قَوْمِهٖ لِلَّذِيْنَ اسْتُضْعِفُوْا لِمَنْ اٰمَنَ مِنْهُمْ اَتَعْلَمُوْنَ اَنَّ صٰلِحًا مُّرْسَلٌ مِّنْ رَّبِّهٖ
The Confrontation Between the Arrogant and the Weakened
The third (75) and the fourth (76) verses carry a dialogue between two groups of the people of Thamud. One of these was of those who had come to believe that Sayyidna Salih (عليه السلام) was a prophet while the other was that of deniers and disbelievers. Says the verse: قَالَ الْمَلَأُ الَّذِينَ اسْتَكْبَرُوا مِن قَوْمِهِ لِلَّذِينَ اسْتُضْعِفُوا لِمَنْ آمَنَ مِنْهُمْ (The chiefs of his people, who were arrogant said to the weakened, to those of them who believed).
In Tafsir Kabir, Imam Razi has said: At this place, the Holy Qur’an identifies two qualities of these two groups, but the quality or trait of the disbelievers was mentioned in the active voice (اسْتَكْبَرُوا who were arrogant) while the quality or state of the believers was identified through the passive (اسْتُضْعِفُوا the weakened). It indicates that the con¬dition of the disbelievers – that they were arrogant – was what they chose to do at their own discretion which was questionable and blame-worthy, and which finally became the cause of their punishment. As for the quality or state of believers which these people put as weak and low, it was something said by disbelievers. Their description had nothing to do with the actual state and quality of believers, something which could be considered blameworthy in any manner whatsoever. In fact, blameworthy are those who call them weak and low, and take them to be so, without any reason. After that comes the dialogue which has occured between these two groups where the disbelievers said to the believers: ` Are you sure that Salih is a messenger from his Lord?’
The reply given by the believers was: ` Surely, we believe in what he has been sent with.’
The famous Tafsir Kashshaf says: What an eloquent answer was given by the believers from the people of Thamud when they said: ` All this debate of yours – is he a messenger of Allah or is he not? – is just not worth debating. In fact, this is obvious, foregone and certain. And equally certain is that what he says is a message brought from Allah Ta` ala. If there is anything worth talking about here, it is: Who be¬lieves in him and who does not? So, as for us, praise be to Allah, we do believe in every word of guidance brought by him.’
But, even this eloquent answer could not soften the disbelieving people of Thamud. They countered back coldly and arrogantly saying that they rejected what they had accepted. The lust of worldly life is merciless. So is the toxic elation of having wealth and power. May Al¬lah Ta` ala keep all of us protected for they become invisible curtains before human eyes which would not let those seeing eyes see the obvi¬ous.
فَعَقَرُوا النَّاقَةَ وَعَتَوْا عَنْ اَمْرِ رَبِّهِمْ وَقَالُوْا يٰصٰلِحُ ائْتِنَا بِمَا تَعِدُنَآ اِنْ كُنْتَ مِنَ الْمُرْسَلِيْنَ
It has appeared in previous verses that the Du` a’ of Sayyidna Salih (عليه السلام) had made a big rock open up in the nearby mountain through which an extraordinary she-camel had come out. Then, Allah Ta` ala had made this she-camel the last trial for these people as she drank up all water from the well which was used by the people and animals of the locality for their needs. Therefore, Sayyidna Salih (عليه السلام) had fixed turns, a day for the she-camel and another for the people of the area.
The people of Thamud were in trouble because of this she-camel. They wished she would somehow die. But, they did not dare do it themselves lest they are hit by some Divine punishment.
But, Satan has an unlimited array of weapons. One of his deadliest strategies of deception which makes human beings surrender whatev¬er sense and sensibility they have is the trial through women. So, two beautiful damsels from the people of Thamud threw a wager: Whoever kills this she-camel could take us, or anyone from among our girls to become his own.
Two young men from Thamud, called Misda` and Qadhar, all drunk with the rosy prospect, went out to kill the she-camel. They hid themselves behind a big rock and waited for the she-camel to pass by them on its usual route. When the she-camel appeared before them, Misda` hit her with an arrow and Qadhar hamstrung her by cutting her legs with his sword. Thus, they killed the she-camel.
The Holy Qur’an calls this person the most cruel and wretched from among the people of Thamud: إِذِ انبَعَثَ أَشْقَاهَا ﴿١٢﴾ when the one, most wicked of them, was sent [ incited to kill her ] – 91:12) because that was what brought mass punishment on the people of Thamud.
Sayyidna Salih (عليه السلام) ، after having found that the she-camel has been killed, told his people – as Divinely commanded – that they have only three days to live: تَمَتَّعُوا فِي دَارِكُمْ ثَلَاثَةَ أَيَّامٍ ۖ ذَٰلِكَ وَعْدٌ غَيْرُ مَكْذُوبٍ that is, ` enjoy yourselves in your homes for three days (only) [ after that the punish¬ment is coming ]. That is a promise, not going to be false – 11:65.’ But, when the undoing of a people becomes due, no advice or warning works. This is what happened with these wretched people. Even the very honest counsel of Sayyidna Salih (عليه السلام) did not produce the desired effect. In turn, they started making fun of him by challenging him as to how and from where would this punishment come and what would be the signs of its coming.
Sayyidna Salih (عليه السلام) said: ` You want signs, so hear this. Tomor¬row, on Thursday, your faces will turn dark yellow. Men, women, the young and the old, no one will remain exempted. Then, day after tomorrow, on Friday, all faces will turn dark red; and on Saturday, the third day to come, all faces will turn jet black. And this day will be the last day of your life.’ Despite having heard what was said, these wretched people, rather than repent and seek forgiveness, decided that they better kill Sayyidna Salih (عليه السلام) himself. Their ` logic’ was: If he is true and the punishment has to come upon them, why should they not finish him first before the punishment comes to finish them – and if he is a liar, then, let him have his punishment for lying. This inten¬tion of the people of Thamud finds mention in details at other places in the Qur’an. Under this unanimous verdict of the Thamudites, some of them went to the house of Sayyidna Salih (عليه السلام) with the intention of killing him. But, as Allah Ta` ala would have it, they were killed by a hail of rocks while still on their way. Says the Qur’an: وَمَكَرُوا مَكْرًا وَمَكَرْنَا مَكْرًا وَهُمْ لَا يَشْعُرُونَ ﴿٥٠﴾that is, ‘and they made a plan and We made a plan and they were not aware’ – 27:50.
When came the morning of Thursday, then, as stated by Sayyidna Salih (عليه السلام) ، the faces of all of them turned as yellow as if painted with a deep yellow colour. The first sign of the coming of punishment stood proved true. Yet, those tyrants were not to be mellowed enough to believe in Allah Ta` ala and desist from their wrongdoings. In fact, their wrath on Sayyidna Salih (عليه السلام) increased all the more and everyone started running around to find and kill him. May Allah Ta` ala protect everyone from His wrath, for that too has its signs which turn hearts and minds upside down, when people start taking their gain as their loss, and their loss as their gain, and their good as bad, and their bad as good.
At last came the second day and, true to the prophecy, everyone’s face turned red; and then, came the third day when they turned jet black. Now there was nowhere to go. All disappointed, they stood wait¬ing to see which way the punishment comes.
In this state of theirs, a severe earthquake struck from down below the earth, and. from above tore in a horrendously shrill cry, an awe¬somely severe sound. This cry or sound caused everyone to die, in¬stantly and simultaneously, fallen upside down, (like some dead bird landing on the ground on its breast – see ` Jathimin’ in Mufradat al-Qur’an). As for the coming of the earthquake, it does find mention in verse 78 which appears above, that is: فَأَخَذَتْهُمُ الرَّجْفَةُ (So, the earthquake seized them). The word:’ الرَّجْفَةُ (ar-rajfah) means earthquake.
فَاَخَذَتْهُمُ الرَّجْفَةُ فَاَصْبَحُوْا فِيْ دَارِهِمْ جٰثِمِيْنَ
Other verses of the Qur’an have also mentioned: فَأَخَذَتْهُمُ الصَّيْحَةُ (that is, a Cry or Sound seized them – 15:83). The word: الصَّيْحَةُ (As-Saihah) means a shrill cry or severe sound. From these two verses, we find out that two kinds of punishment had simultaneously converged on the people of Thamud, the earthquake from below and the ` Saihah’ from above. The result was: أَصْبَحُوا فِي دَارِهِمْ (and they were [ found dead ] in their homes, fallen on their knees – 77). The word: جَاثِمِين (jathimin) is a deriva¬tion from the verbal noun: Juthum, which means to be rendered senseless and motionless at one spot, or remain sitting (Al-Qamus). The sense is that everyone lay dead as and where one was. نَعُوذُ بِاللہِ مِن قَھرِہِ وَ عَذَابِہِ (We seek refuge with Allah from His Wrath and His Punishment).
Important parts of this story of the people of Thamud (عليه السلام) have been mentioned in the different Surahs of the Qur’an itself. Some parts ap¬pear in Hadith narrations. There are some others which commentators have taken from Israelite narratives, but the proof of an event or its reality does not depend on them.
It appears in a Hadith of the Sahih of Al-Bukhari that, during a journey related to the Battle of Tabuk, the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) and his Sa¬habah passed by Hijr, the place where the people of Thamud had faced their punishment. At that spot, he gave instructions to the Sahabah that no one should go into the land area of that punishment-stricken habitation, nor should anyone use water from its wells. (Mazhari)
According to some narrations, the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said: When the punishment overtook the people of Thamud, no one survived except one person, Abu Righal. He was in the Haram of Makkah at that time. Allah Ta` ala spared him of the punishment at that time because of the sanctity of the Haram of Makkah. Finally, when he came out of the Haram, the same punishment which had seized his people visited him as well, and right there he met his death. The Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) also showed people the marks of the grave of Abu Righal on the outskirts of Makkah; and he also said that a walking stick made of gold was also buried with him. When the Sahabah opened the grave, they found the gold stick there which was taken out. Mentioned in the same narration is that Banu Thaqif, the inhabitants of Ta’if are the progeny of this very Abu Righal. (Mazhari)
Allah Ta` ala, in His infinite wisdom, has allowed these habitations of punished peoples to stay as signposts of lesson for coming genera¬tions. The Holy Qur’an has repeatedly warned the people of Arabia that these places which come on their travel route to Syria should bring home to them their essential lesson in the rise and fall of peo¬ples: that is, (these are the dwellings of ungrateful people We لَمْ تُسْكَن مِّن بَعْدِهِمْ إِلَّا قَلِيلًا which) have not been lived in after them, ex¬cept a little – 28:58).
After the mention of the event of punishment which overtook the people of Sayyidna Salih (عليه السلام) it was finally said: فَتَوَلَّىٰ عَنْهُمْ وَقَالَ يَا قَوْمِ لَقَدْ أَبْلَغْتُكُمْ رِسَالَةَ رَبِّي وَنَصَحْتُ لَكُمْ وَلَـٰكِن لَّا تُحِبُّونَ النَّاصِحِينَ ﴿٧٩﴾ (So, he turned away from them and said, “0 my people, I have certainly delivered to you the message of my Lord, and wished your betterment, but you people do not like the sincere advisers – 79), that is, after the visit of punishment on his people, Sayyidna S-alih (عليه السلام) and those who had believed in him left that place and went somewhere else. In some narrations, it appears that there were four thousand believers with Sayyidna Salih (عليه السلام) . He went along with them to Hadramaut in Yaman. It was there that Sayyidna Salih (عليه السلام) passed away from this mortal world. However, some narrations report his going to Makkah al-Mu` azzamah and where it was that he passed away.
From the outward arrangement of the text, it appears that Sayyid¬na Salih (عليه السلام) addressed his people while departing – 0 my people, I have certainly delivered to you the message of my Lord and have wished the best for you, but you do not seem to like honest advisers.
The question is when his people have been destroyed by the pun¬ishment, what is the use of addressing them now. The answer is that one good that may come out of it is that people in general would learn their lesson. This form of address resembles the address of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) when he had said a few words addressing dead disbelievers from the tribe of Quraysh in the Battle of Badr. And then, it is also possible that this saying of Sayyidna Salih (عليه السلام) came to pass before the coming of the punishment and the destruction of his people – though, in the textual arrangement, it has been mentioned later.
وَلُوْطًا اِذْ قَالَ لِقَوْمِهٖٓ اَتَاْتُوْنَ الْفَاحِشَةَ مَا سَبَقَكُمْ بِهَا مِنْ اَحَدٍ مِّنَ الْعٰلَمِيْنَ
Out of the continuing series of stories relating to prophets (علیہم السلام) and their communities, the fourth story is that of Sayyidna Lut (Lot) tX..JI …lc.
Sayyidna Lut (عليه السلام) is a nephew of Sayyidna Ibrahim Khalilullah (عليه السلام) the patriarch of prophets. The original homeland of both was known as Babel near Basrah in western Iraq. Idol-worship was com¬mon. Even the family of Sayyidna Ibrahim (عليه السلام) was involved in it. Allah Ta` ala sent Sayyidna Ibrahim (عليه السلام) as a prophet for their guid¬ance. His people opposed him which culminated in the well known Fire of Nimrud. Even his father threatened to turn him out of his home.
Out of his entire family, only his wife, Sayyidah Sarah and neph¬ew, Sayyidna Lut (عليه السلام) embraced Islam: فَآمَنَ لَهُ لُوطٌ (Then, Lut believed in him – 29:26). Finally, it was with these two that he immigrated to Syr¬ia leaving his home country behind. After reaching Jordon river, he settled in Can’-an near Bayt al-Maqdis under a Divine command.
Then, Allah Ta` ala made Sayyidna Lut (عليه السلام) too a prophet and sent him to Sadum (Sodom) near Bayt al-Maqdis for the guidance of people there. This area comprised of five major cities. They were called Sadum, ` Amurah, Admah, Sububim and Bali` or Sawghar. The Qur’an has referred to their nucleus as ` Mu’tafikah’ and ` Mu’tafikat’ at several places. Sadum was considered as the center and capital of these cities. It was here that Sayyidna Lut (عليه السلام) stayed. The land was fertile and verdant abounding in all kinds of grains and fruits. (These details appear in Al-Bahr Al-Muhit, Mazhari, Ibn Kathir, AI-Manar etc.)
Man’s habit, as Allah Ta` ala says in the Qur’an, is: كَلَّا إِنَّ الْإِنسَانَ لَيَطْغَىٰ ﴿٦﴾ أَن رَّآهُ اسْتَغْنَىٰ ﴿٧﴾ that is, when he acquires freedom from need, he starts transgressing the limits – 96:6-7. On these people too, Allah Ta` ala had opened the doors of His blessings. Goaded by this common behaviour pattern, all soaked in wealth and possessions, they reached the farthest ends of luxury and lust when they stood deprived of the most essential human sense of honour, dignity and modesty, and lost in that process, the very ability to distinguish between the good and the bad. In conse¬quence, they got themselves involved in acts of unnatural indecencies. These are abominal acts, apart from being Haram and sinful, acts which cause hatred and distaste in the heart and mind of everyone born with sound and decent taste, so much so, that even animals would not go near it.
Allah Ta` ala appointed Sayyidna Lit (عليه السلام) for their guidance. He addressed his people and said: أَتَأْتُونَ الْفَاحِشَةَ مَا سَبَقَكُم بِهَا مِنْ أَحَدٍ مِّنَ الْعَالَمِينَ (Do you commit the shameful act in which nobody has ever preceded you from all the worlds?).
When referring to Zina (adultery), the Qur’an has said: إِنَّهُ كَانَ فَاحِشَةً (Surely, it is a shameful act – 17:32). Here, the word: فَاحِشَةً (fahishah: shameful act) has been mentioned without ‘Alif Lam while in the present verse, by saying: اَلفَاحِشَةً (al-fahishah: the shameful act), it has been made definite by the addition of ‘Alif Lam. Thus, the hint given is that this unnatural evil act is, as if, the combination of all indecencies, and far grave a crime as compared to Zina.
Then, it was said that this shameful act has never been committed by anyone in all the worlds before they did it. ` Amru ibn Dinar has said: The act was unknown in the world before these people. (Mazhari) Neither had the worst of human being had ever thought on those lines before the people of Sadum. The Umayyad Khalifah, ` Abd al-Malik said: Had this event relating to the people of Lut (عليه السلام) not been mentioned in the Qur’an, I would have never suspected that a human being could do something like that. (Ibn Kathir)
Here, their immodesty has been censured on two grounds: (1)-It so happens that men would get involved in many sins because of their so¬cial conditions, or because of a blind following of their ancestors – though, that too, is not a valid legal excuse in the Shar’iah of Islam. But, as a matter of customary practice, such a person could be taken as excusable in some or the other degree. But, when it comes to a sin which has never been committed by anyone before, nor does it have any particular compulsions of its own, it becomes a curse of the high¬est degree. (2)-The other ground is that this act becomes a channel of making others equally accursed. Think of a person who invents some evil act or custom. As obvious, the sin and punishment of his evil act falls on that person anyway, but, along with him, affected are all who sink in sin led by the act of the originator right through the Last Day, for the curse and punishment of all those so affected also sits on the shoulders of the originator of the evil.
اِنَّكُمْ لَتَاْتُوْنَ الرِّجَالَ شَهْوَةً مِّنْ دُوْنِ النِّسَاۗءِ ۭ بَلْ اَنْتُمْ قَوْمٌ مُّسْرِفُوْنَ
In the second verse (81), this immodesty has been stated more expli¬citly – ` Surely, you come to men lustfully instead of women.’ Here, the hint given is that, for the natural satisfaction of human desire, Allah ‘Ta` ala has appointed marrying women as a lawful method. Now, to by-pass it and opt for an unnatural method is bland ugliness of the hu¬man self and certainly the proof of a dirty mind.
Therefore, the Sahabah, the Tabi` in and Mujtahid Imams have de¬clared this crime and sin to be far more grave than other acts of shame. Imam Abu Hanifah (رح) has said: The punishment given to the person who commits this act should match the punishment which came upon the people of Lut (عليه السلام) by the command of Allah Ta` ala – that rocks rained from the skies and the floor of the earth flipped upside down. Therefore, this person should be pushed down from a high mountain and rocks should be thrown from above on top of him. According to a narration of Sayyidna Ibn ` Abbas (رض) in the Musnad of Ahmad, Abu Dawud, Tirmidhi, and Ibn Majah, the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said about the people who commit this evil act: فاقتلوا الفاعل والمفعول بہ that is, the doer of this evil deed and his passive partner (al-mafulu bihi: with whom it was done) should both be killed. (Ibn Kathir)
At the end of the verse (81), it was said: بَلْ أَنتُمْ قَوْمٌ مُّسْرِفُونَ (No, you are a people who cross the limits). In other words, their real disease was that they would go beyond the limits set by Allah for everything – in their case, it would be the very limit of humanity they would be hopping over. The same thing happened about sexual desire when they crossed the limits appointed by Allah only to reach for a taste of the counter-natural.
وَاَمْطَرْنَا عَلَيْهِمْ مَّطَرًا ۭفَانْظُرْ كَيْفَ كَانَ عَاقِبَةُ الْمُجْرِمِيْنَ
In the fifth verse (84), the punishment which came on these people has been described in a few words – that an unusual rain was sent upon them. The details of this punishment appear in Surah Had where it is said:
فَلَمَّا جَاءَ أَمْرُنَا جَعَلْنَا عَالِيَهَا سَافِلَهَا وَأَمْطَرْنَا عَلَيْهَا حِجَارَةً مِّن سِجِّيلٍ مَّنضُودٍ ﴿82﴾ مُّسَوَّمَةً عِندَ رَبِّكَ ۖ وَمَا هِيَ مِنَ الظَّالِمِينَ بِبَعِيدٍ ﴿83﴾
(So, when Our command-came, We turned its highest into its lowest, and We rained on it stones of hard clay, one over an-other marked, with your Lord. And they are not far from the transgressors – 11:82-83).
This tells us that the rain of stones came from above and from down below, angel Jibra’il (عليه السلام) lifted up the whole crust of the earth and threw it back upside down. Then, the stones which rained down were one over the other, that is, the stone rained so ceaselessly that they kept collecting one on top the next. These stones were marked. Some commentators say that every such stone was marked with the name of the person who was destined to be destroyed with it. And in the verses of Surah Al-Hijr, also mentioned before the account of the punishment is: فَأَخَذَتْهُمُ الصَّيْحَةُ مُشْرِقِينَ ﴿٧٣﴾ that is, a Sound seized them at sunrise – 15:73).
This indicates that first to come was some harsh Sound from the skies, then came other punishments. The outward arrangement of the words shows that it was after this Sound that the earth crust was turned upside down and then, stones were rained on them to put a stamp on their disgrace. And it is also possible that the rain of stones came first and the turning over of the earth crust came later. The rea¬son is that, given the style of the Qur’an, it is not necessary that some-thing mentioned earlier should have also occurred earlier.
Out of the horrendous punishments sent on the people of Sayyidna Lut (عليه السلام) ، the punishment of turning the floor of the earth upside down has a particular correspondence with their act of shame and im¬modesty because they were guilty of perversion.
Towards the end of the verses of Surah Hud cited a little earlier, the Qur’an has warned the people of Arabia when it says: وَمَا هِيَ مِنَ الظَّالِمِينَ بِبَعِيدٍ ﴿٨٣﴾ that is, these upturned habitations were not far from the trans¬gressors. They pass by them while traveling to Syria but it is surpris¬ing that they would learn no lesson from them.
And these sights are not restricted with the time the Holy Qur’an was being revealed. They are still there between Bayt al-Maqdis and Jordon river, particularly the area known as the Sea of Lut or the Dead Sea. It lies way deep below the sea level. On a particular section, there is water which is unusual. No sea life survives there. Hence, the name: Dead Sea. This is said to be the legendary Sodom. May Allah keep us safe from His Punishment and Wrath.
وَاِلٰي مَدْيَنَ اَخَاهُمْ شُعَيْبًا ۭقَالَ يٰقَوْمِ اعْبُدُوا اللّٰهَ مَا لَكُمْ مِّنْ اِلٰهٍ غَيْرُهٗ
The series of stories relating to prophets (علیہم السلام) continues. The fifth story appears in the verses quoted above. This is the story of Sayyidna Shu’aib (عليه السلام) and his eople.
Sayyidna Shu’aibعليه السلام according to Muhammad ibn Ishaq, is among the progeny of Madyan, the son of Sayyidna Ibrahim (عليه السلام) and he is also related to Sayyidna Lut (عليه السلام) . The lineal descendants of Madyan, the son of Sayyidna Ibrahim (عليه السلام) also came to be known by the name, Madyan – and the locality where they lived is also called Madyan. Thus, Madyan is the name of a people and the name of a city as well. This city still survives near the port of Ma` an in Eastern Jordan. When relating the story of Sayyidna Musa (عليه السلام) elsewhere, the Qur’an says: وَلَمَّا وَرَدَ مَاءَ مَدْيَنَ (And when he arrived at the watering [ place ] in Madyan – 28:23), it is referring to this very habitation. (Ibn Kathir) Sayyidna Shu’aib (عليه السلام) was known for his impressive oratory because of which he was called the Orator among Prophets (علیہم السلام) . (Ibn Kathir, Al Bahr Al-Muhit)
The people to whom Sayyidna Shu’aib (عليه السلام) was sent have been identified by the Holy Qur’an as the residents or people of Madyan, and also as the people of Aikah. The word: ایکہ (Aikah) means a forest.
Some commentators say that these were two different people and lived in separate settlements. Sayyidna Shu’aib (عليه السلام) was sent to one of them first. When they were destroyed, he was sent to the other. The punishment which came upon these two has also been stated in different words. The punishment of the Rajfah on the people of Madyan is mentioned as Saihah (Sound) at some places, while as Rajfah (earthquake) at others. The punishment of the people of Aikah has been stated as being that of Zullah (shade, canopy). The form in which this punishment came was that the people of Aikah were first subjected to intense heat in their locality which almost roasted them. Then, in the forest close by there came a dense cloud which cast its shade over the entire forest. Attracted by the shade and cool breeze there, all inhabitants of the locality assembled under the shade of that cloud. As Divine arrangement would have it, here were its criminals walking on their two feet and reaching the exact spot where they were to be de¬stroyed, without a warrant of arrest and without a police gun pointed at them. Once they were all there, the clouds rained fire and the earthquake shook the earth. That killed them all.
Then, there are other commentators who say that the people of Madyan and the people of Aikah are the same people and the three kinds of punishment mentioned here converged on these people. First came the Fire from the clouds, then, with it, rose the piercing Sound, and then, the earthquake shook the earth. Ibn Kathir has favoured this view.
However, whether these two people are separate or are two names of the same people, what matters is the message of truth delivered to them by Sayyidna Shu’aib (عليه السلام) – and that has been mentioned in the first (85) and second (86) verses. Before we move on to the explana¬tion of this message, let us first understand that the essence of Islam, which is the combined call of all blessed prophets, is the fulfillment of mutual rights. Then rights are of two kinds. First come rights which are related directly to Allah Ta` ala. No visible human gain or loss seems to depend on their fulfillment or abandonment, for example, praying and fasting (Salah and Sawm). Secondly, there are the rights of the servants of Allah (Huquq al-Ibad: human rights – in secular terminology) which are related to human beings. These people were heedless to and unaware of both these rights, in fact, were acting counter to both.
By not believing in Allah Ta` ala and His messengers, they were vio¬lating the rights of Allah, and on top of it, by decreasing weights and measures, they were slicing through and wasting away the rights of human beings. Then, such people would go on to sit on entry points of roads and streets and would terrorize all comers, rob them of their belongings, and warned them of worse consequences if they believed in Sayyidna Shu’aib (عليه السلام) . And thus, on God’s good earth, they had made disorder the order of the day. It was to correct these misdeeds that Sayyidna Shu’aib (عليه السلام) was sent to them.
In the first and second verses quoted above, Sayyidna Shu’aib (عليه السلام) said three things to correct the course of his people: (1)-First he said: يَا قَوْمِ اعْبُدُوا اللَّـهَ مَا لَكُم مِّنْ إِلَـٰهٍ غَيْرُهُ ` ( O my people, worship Allah. You have no god other than Him). This is the same Da’wah, the call to Tauhid, the Oneness of Allah, which all blessed prophets have been giving all along the lanes of time, a call which is the spirit of all true beliefs and deeds. Since these people too were all sold to the worship of the creat¬ed, and consequently, heedless to the sacred Being and Attributes of Allah Ta` ala, and thus, neglectful of the fulfillment of His rights. Therefore, this was the first message given to them. (2)-Then, it was said: قَدْ جَاءَتْكُم بَيِّنَةٌ مِّن رَّبِّكُمْ (There has come to you a clear sign from your Lord). Here, ` clear signs’ or proofs refers to the miracles which were manifested at the hands of Sayyidna Shu’aib (عليه السلام) . The different forms in which these miracles had appeared find mention in Tafsir Al-Bahr Al-Muhit. (3)-The statement which follows lays down a major rule of just conduct. It was said: فَأَوْفُوا الْكَيْلَ وَالْمِيزَانَ وَلَا تَبْخَسُوا النَّاسَ أَشْيَاءَهُمْ (And fill the measure and weight in full, and do not make people short of their things). The word: کَیل (kail) means measure, and: مِیزَان (mizan) is used in the sense of weighing, and: بِخس (bakhs) means to bring loss on someone by giving one less than what is due. Thus, the instruction given in the verse is to give full measure and weight and to abstain from causing loss to them by holding back what is their due.
In the first part of the verse, the particular crime of under-measuring or under-weighing in buying and selling was prohibited. Later, by saying: وَلَا تَبْخَسُوا النَّاسَ أَشْيَاءَهُمْ (and do not make people short of their things), the prohibition was generalized. Now the prohibition ap¬plies to all kinds of decreasing, slicing, under-cutting or short-changing of rights – whether related to property, or honour, or something else. (Al-Bahr Al-Muhit)
From here we know that the way it is forbidden to give less than due while weighing and measuring, similarly, forbidden is any cutting back on the human rights of other people. Acts like attacking someone’s honour, not giving due respect to someone according to his legitimate station, showing shortcoming in obeying those the showing of obedience to whom is necessary and failing to respect those who must compulsorily and duly be respected are included under the purview of the crime which used to be committed by the people of Sayyidna Shu’aib (عليه السلام) . During his famous Khutbah of the Last Hajj, when the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) declared that the honour of people is as worthy of being respected and defended as their blood is, stands as a broader confirmation of this view.
All these things are included under the words: مُطَفِّفِينَ (mutaffifin)and: تَطفِیف (tatfif) wherever mentioned in the Qur’an. Sayyidna Faruq al A` zam (رض) saw a person making his Ruku` and Sajdah in a hurry.
He said: (that is, you are guilty of measuring and weighing short -Mu’atta Imam Malik). By saying so, he meant that the person had not ful¬filled the right of Sarah as it was due. Thus, in this report, the short-coming of not fulfilling the right of Sarah as due has been referred to by the word: تَطفِیف (tatfif : measuring and weighing short).
At the end of the verse, it was said: وَلَا تُفْسِدُوا فِي الْأَرْضِ بَعْدَ إِصْلَاحِهَا (and do not make mischief on the earth after it has been set in order). This sentence has also appeared earlier in this Surah Al-A` raf (for details, please see comments under verse 56) where it was said that the physi¬cal betterment of conditions on the earth depends on utilizing things properly – as and where due, respecting limits and maintaining moder¬ation, equity and justice; and spiritual betterment depends on rela¬tionship with Allah and obedience to His commands. As for the oppo¬site of it, that is, physical and spiritual disorder on earth, it shows up when these principles are compromised or abandoned. The people of Sayyidna Shu’aib (عليه السلام) had done exactly this. They had totally abandoned these principles because of which earth had become a hotbed of physical and spiritual disorder. That is why they were advised to ab-stain from such deeds which would serve as corrupting influence for the whole earth.
Then, it was said: ذَٰلِكُمْ خَيْرٌ لَّكُمْ إِن كُنتُم مُّؤْمِنِين (This is good for you, if you are believers). The sense is that should they repent and retract from their evil doings, it has nothing but good waiting for them in their present life as well as in the life to come. As for the prosperity and suc¬cess in the life to come is concerned, it is obvious that it depends on one’s obedience to what Allah has commanded us to do. Then, as for success in the present world, we can say once people find out that there is someone who is honest in weights and measures and is partic-ular about all other rights of his clients, his credit and goodwill will become established in the market and his business will increase in vol¬ume and reliability.
Determining the meaning of the statement – ` Do not sit in every path threatening and preventing people from the path of Allah’ – in verse 86, some commentators have said that both sentences carry the same sense since these people stopped and threatened those who came to Sayyidna Shu’aib (عليه السلام) . This they were ordered not to do.
Others have said that these crimes committed by them were two separate’ crimes. They sat on thoroughfares, looted and snatched things, and also prevented people from believing in Sayyidna Shu’aib (عليه السلام) . Thus, the first sentence describes the first crime while the sec¬ond sentence describes the other. The later view has been relied upon in Tafsir Al-Bahr Al-Muhit and elsewhere too. Also included under the purview of this command against looting and snatching are check posts set up on thoroughfares to realize impermissible taxes against the provisions of the Shari` ah.
` Allamah Al-Qurtubi has said that those who sit on thoroughfares and make people pay undue taxes against the provisions of the Sha¬ri` ah, they too are criminals like the people of Sayyidna Shu’aib – rather, more oppressive and tyrannical than they were.
After that it was said: وَتَبْغُونَهَا عِوَجًا (and seeking a twist in it), that is, these people are always on the lookout for the opportunity to find something in the way of Allah which they could twist, turn and mis¬represent and come up with their roster of doubts and objections through which they could try to wean people away from the true relig¬ion.
قَدِ افْتَرَيْنَا عَلَي اللّٰهِ كَذِبًا اِنْ عُدْنَا فِيْ مِلَّتِكُمْ بَعْدَ اِذْ نَجّٰىنَا اللّٰهُ مِنْهَا
In the second verse (89), Sayyidna Shu’aib (عليه السلام) said to his people:
Allah Ta` ala saved us from your false faith. Now if we were to return to your faith, this would amount to a false and grim accusation by us against Allah Ta` ala.
First of all giving Kufr and Shirk the status of faith by itself means that they have been commanded by Allah Ta` ala – which is forging a lie against Him. In addition to that, after having believed in the revealed Truth (‘Iman) and after having its knowledge and insight, a return to Kufr (disbelief) would amount to saying that the first way was false and erroneous while the true and correct way was that which has been adopted later. As obvious, this is a compounded lie and accusation – that the true (Haqq) was taken to be false (Bath) and vice versa, the Bath to be Haqq.
There was a certain flavour of claim or assertion in this saying of Sayyidna Shu’aib (عليه السلام) – that we can never return to your religion again. Making such a claim is, at least outwardly, contrary to the spir¬it of selfless submission a true servant of Allah is supposed to have (‘abdiyyah). It does not behove those who are close to the presence of Allah and those who have come to know Him. Therefore, he said: مَا يَكُونُ لَنَا أَن نَّعُودَ فِيهَا إِلَّا أَن يَشَاءَ اللَّـهُ رَبُّنَا ۚ وَسِعَ رَبُّنَا كُلَّ شَيْءٍ عِلْمًا ۚ عَلَى اللَّـهِ تَوَكَّلْنَا (And it is not for us that we turn to it unless Allah, our Lord, so wills. Our Lord encom¬passes everything with His knowledge. In Allah we place our trust).
This statement is a mirror of his humility عِجز (‘Ijz), an assertion of trust in Allah تَوَکُّل (Tawakkul) and a confident attitude of resigning mat¬ters to Him تفویض (Tafwid). These are master virtues of prophets. They amount to saying: at are we and how can we claim to do something or stay away from it? To be able to do something good and to succeed in staying away from evil is nothing but the grace of Allah Ta’ala – as said by the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) :
لَو لَا اللہُ مَا اھتَدَینا وَ لَا تَصَدَّقنَا وَ لَا صَلَّینَا
Had there not been the grace of Allah Ta’ala, we would have not been guided right, nor been able to give in charity, nor to make Sarah.
It was due to this quality of trusting in Allah alone that when, af¬ter having talked to the arrogant chiefs of the people, Sayyidna Shu’aib (عليه السلام) realized that nothing seems to move these people in any manner whatsoever, he stopped addressing them and made the following Du’a’ (prayer) to Allah Ta’ala: رَبَّنَا افْتَحْ بَيْنَنَا وَبَيْنَ قَوْمِنَا بِالْحَقِّ وَأَنتَ خَيْرُ الْفَاتِحِين (Our Lord, decide between us and our people, with truth, and You are the best of all judges). Sayyidna ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Abbas (رض) has hat the word: فَتح (fath) means ‘decide’ at this place. That is how the word: فَاتِح (fatih) takes the sense of Qadi or judge.
And in reality, through these words, Sayyidna Shu’aib (عليه السلام) had prayed for the destruction of the disbelievers from among his people – which was answered by Allah Ta’ala when they were destroyed by an earthquake.
وَلَوْ اَنَّ اَهْلَ الْقُرٰٓي اٰمَنُوْا وَاتَّقَوْا لَفَتَحْنَا عَلَيْهِمْ بَرَكٰتٍ مِّنَ السَّمَاۗءِ وَالْاَرْضِ وَلٰكِنْ كَذَّبُوْا
The Arabic word بَرَکَہ :’barakah’ used in this verse and translated as blessing signifies increase or growth. The expression ‘blessing of the heaven and the earth’ refers to all means of prosperity, like proper and timely rain from heavens (clouds), abundant and healthy produce of the earth and, above all, carefree enjoyment from their possessions with no anxiety to spoil the pleasure of things. That is, everything would have been blessed with ‘barakah’.
The barakah manifests itself in two different ways. Sometimes, the thing itself increases in quantity, as is reported happening with the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) that a large number of people drank from a small pot of water and were satiated or the whole army was fed to their satisfaction from a small quantity of food. Sometimes, the quantity of thing does not increase but its usefulness or efficacy is increased manifold. It is usually observed that a certain thing in our household lasts as long or benefits as many people as would have done three or four things of the same kind. That is to say, certain things yield lasting benefit to people while certain other things do not, or hardly serve people either due to being damaged by accident or not being accessible in times of need.
For example, sometime a single morsel of food becomes a source of great strength and health, while in some other times a large amount of food produces no results. Sometimes, we are able to do a considerable amount of work in one hour’s short time, while on other occasions this amount of work can hardly be done in four or five hour’s time. In these instances the thing itself did not increase. That is, the morsel of food and period of time remained as they were, their effect and benefit was, however, enhanced many times.
This verse has implicitly expressed that ‘Barakah’ in all the heavenly and earthly things can be achieved through the faith in Allah and by acquiring: تَقویٰ ‘taqwa’ (abstinence) while, in the absence of these two, one is deprived of the: بَرَکَہ barakah’. When we take in view the circumstances prevailing in today’s world we notice the fact that the net produce of the earth is comparably far more than ever before. The recent inventions are at our service to ease our life in a way that could not be imagined of by past generations. But in spite of this abundance of means and resources today’s man is proportionally worried, depressed, dissatisfied and as much deprived of peace and comfort as was never before.
What has deprived today’s man of peace and comfort? No explana¬tion can be given to this question except that the: بَرَکَہ barakah is missing from these things. Another point which demands our atten¬tion here is that prosperity, good health and worldly possessions are not necessarily a sign of favour and blessing from Allah. Sometimes, these things are given to man out of anger as has been made clear in verse 44 of Surah Al-An` am ‘which has said:
فَلَمَّا نَسُوا مَا ذُكِّرُوا بِهِ فَتَحْنَا عَلَيْهِمْ أَبْوَابَ كُلِّ شَيْءٍ
Then they forgot the advice they had received, we opened to them the doors of all good things. (6:44)
Thereafter, they were suddenly caught by the punishment of Allah. This makes us understand that prosperity and affluence of wealth are not sure signs of Allah’s favour. They can sometimes, be a sign of Allah’s wrath and punishment. On the contrary, the present verse leads us to conclude that: بَرَکَہ barakah in earthly and heavenly things is a sign of Allah’s favour. In order to differentiate between the two situ¬ations one must understand that prosperity and good health are sometimes, given to people against their sins and transgression. They are usually short-lived and are a sign of Allah’s displeasure while on other occasions people are favoured with them with lasting benefits as a reward of ‘Iman’ and ‘taqwa’. To determine as to which is a sign of favour and which a sign of displeasure is difficult as both are alike.
The men of Allah, however, have suggested some distinct signs to differentiate between the two. When prosperity and good health make man more grateful to Allah and he tends to worship His Lord more than before, it is an indication of Allah’s favour. On the contrary, when one tends to be more involved in sinful deeds, it must be a sign of Allah’s wrath. We seek shelter against such state of affairs.
The verses 97 to 99 have warned the people of the world saying: “So, do the people of the towns feel secure from Our punishment coming upon them at night while they are asleep?” The verse implies that the residents of these towns (the people living in the time of the holy Prophet seem to be unmindful of the fact that they can be caught by the punishment of Allah any time when sleeping at night. They should not feel themselves secure from the punishment of Allah which may come to them suddenly any day when they are busy in their worldly pursuits. What has made them so fearless of Allah’s plan? The fate of the early people referred to in the foregoing verses should be a lesson for these people. Man should be wise enough to take lesson from the events of other people and avoid things to do which had led them to death and disaster.
اَوَلَمْ يَهْدِ لِلَّذِيْنَ يَرِثُوْنَ الْاَرْضَ مِنْۢ بَعْدِ اَهْلِهَآ اَنْ لَّوْ نَشَاۗءُ اَصَبْنٰهُمْ بِذُنُوْبِهِمْ ۚ
After relating events of the early people, the above verses invite the people of Arabia and the people of the world to take lesson from these events by abstaining from deeds that incurred Allah’s wrath, and by following the practices that led the prophets and their believers to eternal success. The verse 100 speaks ” Is it not a guidance to those who inherit the land after it’s (former) inhabitants that, if We so will, We would afflict them for their sins?” The word ھَدٰی۔ یَھدِی signifies to guide or to inform. The events narrated above have been made the subject of the verb (guide) یَھدِ. The verse implies that these events should serve as a lesson and a means of guidance for later generations who have inherited the land from their earlier owners. They too, can incur the punishment of Allah for their disbelief just as their ances¬tors met the fate of ruin and disaster for their disobedience.
Thereafter, the verse says:
وَنَطْبَعُ عَلَىٰ قُلُوبِهِمْ فَهُمْ لَا يَسْمَعُونَ
“And We seal their hearts so that they do not listen”
The word: طبع is used for printing or stamping. It implies that these people have taken no lesson from the past events with the result that they incurred the wrath of Allah making their hearts sealed. They are, therefore, unable to listen to the truth. The Holy Prophet g said in a Tradition: When one commits sin for the first time a black dot is placed on his heart, if he keeps committing sins for the second and third times the second and third dots are placed. If one increases in his sins without repenting to Allah, these black spots keep increasing until the whole heart is painted black.” This ultimately deprives man of his natural faculty of distinguishing right from wrong. This, conse¬quently, leads one to receive evil as good and good as evil, harmful as useful and useful as harmful.
This perversion of human understanding has been termed in the Holy Qur’an as ‘ ra’n’ signifying the rust of the heart. In this verse, as in many other verses of the Holy Qur’an, this stage has been named as ‘taba”. The result of their hearts being sealed has been mentioned at the end of the verse by saying (لَا يَسْمَعُونَ ) “so that they do not listen”. One may think that more appropriate expression in this context was (S’ ) they do not understand” as the adverse effect of sealing, of فَهُمْ لَا يَفقھُونَ the heart is obviously related to the faculty of understanding and not to the listening. The Holy Qur’an has used the word ‘listen’ to indicate that understanding is usually the result of listening to the truth. Now, since their hearts have been sealed they are rendered unable to listening the truth. Another explanation to this may be that all human faculties and limbs are controlled by human heart, that is, the function of all human parts is adversely affected by malfunctioning of the heart. When one loves anyone or anything he likes everything – good or bad – in that person or object.
تِلْكَ الْقُرٰي نَقُصُّ عَلَيْكَ مِنْ اَنْۢبَاۗىِٕهَا ۚ وَلَقَدْ جَاۗءَتْهُمْ رُسُلُهُمْ بِالْبَيِّنٰتِ ۚ
The verse 101 has contained the phrase تِلْكَ الْقُرَىٰ نَقُصُّ عَلَيْكَ مِنْ أَنبَائِهَا “these are stories of the towns that We narrate to you.” The word: نَبَا ‘naba’ in Arabic is used to denote some great news. With the word: مِن ‘min’ the verse has indicated that the events described in these verses are only some of a large number of events bearing the same lesson. The verse has further said, “And surely, their messengers came to them with clear signs, but they were not to believe in what they had belied earlier.” It brings out their obstinate attitude towards the prophets who came to them with clear signs or miracles which are a definite means to decide between right and wrong but they obstinately rejected the truth, only because they had once belied them.
We know from this verse that miracles were given to all the prophets. The miracles of some prophets have been mentioned while the miracles of most of the prophets have not been referred to in the Holy Qur’an. This does not allow one to infer that the prophets not mentioned in the Qur’an were not given any miracles. As for the statement of the people of the prophet Hud (عليه السلام) ، appearing in Surah Hud مَا جِئْتَنَا بِبَيِّنَةٍ “you did not bring any clear sign”, this verse has clearly indicated that their statement was simply out of their obstinacy or, maybe they thought his miracles were of less significance.
Another point to be noted is that the present verse is speaking of the peculiarity of the disbelieving people who rigidly and obstinately followed the path of ignorance, only to prove that what they had once said was true, with no regard to all the clear signs and proofs of the truth. Most of the Muslims, even some ‘Ulama’ (the religious scholars) are seen to have the same habit of supporting their wrong statements in the face of clear proofs of the truth. This condition is a usual cause of incurring Allah’s wrath. (‘Masail al Suluk’ )
Thereafter, the verse said كَذَٰلِكَ يَطْبَعُ اللَّـهُ عَلَىٰ قُلُوبِ الْكَافِرِينَ “This is how Allah stamps upon the hearts of the disbelievers” that is, Allah seals the hearts of those who disbelieve and reject the truth, making them unable to accept good as good.
وَمَا وَجَدْنَا لِاَكْثَرِهِمْ مِّنْ عَهْدٍ ۚ وَاِنْ وَّجَدْنَآ اَكْثَرَهُمْ لَفٰسِقِيْنَ
The verse 102 has said, “And We did not find with most of them any covenant (unbroken).” The Companion ` Abdullah ibn Abbas (رض) has said that the covenant referred to in this verse is the Covenant called . That is, the covenant that Allah made with the spirits of all the creatures before creating them, when Allah said to them: أَلَسْتُ بِرَبِّكُمْ ”Am I not your Lord?” All the human spirits entered into a covenant by answering” Yes” to the question. Most of the people forgot this covenant after they came to earth, and got involved in worshipping false gods instead of worshipping Allah. The verse, therefore, has said that Allah did not find most of the people true to this covenant. (Tafsir Kabir)
The respected companion ` Abdullah ibn Masud (رض) عنہما has said that the covenant referred to in this verse is the covenant of ‘Iman’ the Faith as has been indicated in the Holy Qur’an in these words إِلَّا مَنِ اتَّخَذَ عِندَ الرَّحْمَـٰنِ عَهْدًا “Except the one who entered into a covenant with Rahman (Allah), the covenant in this verse signifies the covenant of Faith. The verse, therefore, implies that most of the people deviated from their covenant with Allah. We usually note that nearly every individual when he finds himself trapped in some distress, no matter how sinful he is, turns to Allah and often makes a promise in words or in his heart that he will be faithful to Allah and obey Him and avoid disobe¬dience if he is relieved from this calamity. But when they are out of the mess, they indulge in their mundane desires having no regard for their covenant with Allah.
The Holy Qur’an has made mention of many of such people. It may be noted that the verse has made exception by saying ‘most of them’ and not ‘all of them’. It is because there are people who are so perverted that even in their distress they do not turn to Allah, and they do not think of making any promise with Allah, while there are others who fulfill their promise and stay obedient to Him. At the end, the verse has the phrase “We found most of them sinners.” That is, most of the people deviate from their covenant of staying obedient to Allah.
The above verses have described five events of earlier people so that present people may learn lesson from them and avoid following the course of their forefathers that led them to disaster.
Of all the events of early people described in this chapter the next event is of prophet Musa (عليه السلام) which has been described in some detail in the following verses because his miracles are larger in number and more prominent in their nature. Similarly, his people, the Israelite, were more obstinate and ignorant than other people of the world. In addition, these verses, 103-110 carry some injunctions and points of discussion.
وَجَاۗءَ السَّحَرَةُ فِرْعَوْنَ قَالُوْٓا اِنَّ لَنَا لَاَجْرًا اِنْ كُنَّا نَحْنُ الْغٰلِبِيْنَ
Its diction and style so bewildered the Arabs that they instantly acknowledged a super human element in it. The sorcerers came to Pharaoh and said:
إِنَّ لَنَا لَأَجْرًا إِن كُنَّا نَحْنُ الْغَالِبِينَ
“There must be a reward for us, if we are the victors.” (113)
نَعَمْ وَإِنَّكُمْ لَمِنَ الْمُقَرَّبِينَ
“Yes, and of course, you will be among the closer ones.” (114)
The sorcerers were invited from all over the country. When they all came to Pharaoh they asked him of some reward if they gain victory over Musa (عليه السلام) . He promised that in addition to their reward they shall be included among those close to him. The historical reports about the number of these sorcerers give us different information. These give us a number from nine hundred to three hundred thousand. The quantity of the staves and strings used in this contest is reported to be as great as was loaded on three hundred camels. (Qurtubi)
It may be noted that the first thing the sorcerers did, was to have an assurance about the reward they will get in return of their perfor¬mance. It is because worldly people are always after worldly gains. They do nothing unless they are sure of their gains, while on the contrary, the prophets and their disciples always declare:
وَمَا أَسْأَلُكُمْ عَلَيْهِ مِنْ أَجْرٍ ۖ إِنْ أَجْرِيَ إِلَّا عَلَىٰ رَبِّ الْعَالَمِينَ ﴿109﴾
I do not ask you for a reward, as my reward is with the Lord of all the worlds.’ (26:109)
That is, the prophets of Allah preach and convey the message of Allah only for the good and guidance of people and they seek no finan¬cial gain against it. They seek their reward from Allah alone. After this discourse with Pharaoh the sorcerers got the place and date fixed for the great encounter. An open land was chosen for the purpose and the time was fixed after the sunrise on their festival Day. It is also mentioned in a verse of the Holy Qur’an: Musa (عليه السلام) said: قَالَ مَوْعِدُكُمْ يَوْمُ الزِّينَةِ وَأَن يُحْشَرَ النَّاسُ ضُحًى ﴿٥٩﴾ ,, your appointed day is the day of ‘zinah’ so that people may be gathered after sunrise.” (20:59)
Some reports say that the prophet Musa (عليه السلام) had a short conversation with the chief of the sorcerers and asked him if they would accept the faith in case he defeated them? He said that there was no question of their being defeated as they possessed such great magical powers that could not be overcome by any one. And in case ‘you bring defeat to us we shall declare our faith openly in the pres¬ence of the Pharaoh’. (Mazhari and Qurtubi)
قَالَ مُوْسٰي لِقَوْمِهِ اسْتَعِيْنُوْا بِاللّٰهِ وَاصْبِرُوْا ۚ اِنَّ الْاَرْضَ لِلّٰهِ
After being defeated by the prophet Musa (عليه السلام) ، Pharaoh enforced the law of killing the male children of the Israelites. They were greatly alarmed of the punishment they had experienced before the coming of the prophet Musa (عليه السلام) . The prophet Musa (عليه السلام) was also mindful of this fact. Out of his kindness, he offered two wise solutions to the Israelites. He said to them that only way of getting out of this trial was, firstly, to seek help from Allah and, secondly, to remain patient until the things change into their favour. He also promised them that they shall inherit the whole land if they faithfully observed the two instructions. This is what the verse said فَإِذَا جَاءَتْهُمُ الْحَسَنَةُ قَالُوا لَنَا هَـٰذِهِ ۖ وَإِن تُصِبْهُمْ سَيِّئَةٌ يَطَّيَّرُوا بِمُوسَىٰ وَمَن مَّعَهُ ۗ أَلَا إِنَّمَا طَائِرُهُمْ عِندَ اللَّـهِ وَلَـٰكِنَّ أَكْثَرَهُمْ لَا يَعْلَمُونَ ﴿١٣١﴾ وَقَالُوا مَهْمَا تَأْتِنَا بِهِ مِنْ آيَةٍ لِّتَسْحَرَنَا بِهَا فَمَا نَحْنُ لَكَ بِمُؤْمِنِينَ ﴿١٣٢﴾ “Seek help from Allah and be patient; surely, the land belongs to Allah, He lets whomsoever He wills inherit it, from among his servants.” This implies that all the lands belong to Allah, and He lets whomsoever He wills inherit the land. And decidedly the end result is for the God-fearing. So, if they observe ‘Taqwa’ (keep away from disobedience) by acting upon the two instructions offered above they shall ultimately rule the whole country.
The Only Way To Success
A little reflection over the above two teachings of the prophet Musa (عليه السلام) will show that it is the sovereign remedy which never fails against any difficulty. The first ingredient of this recipe is seeking help from Allah which is the essence of the remedy. It is for the obvious reason that if the Creator of the universe comes to one’s help who is there to stop Him? Maulana Rumi said in a couplet:
خاک و باد و آب و آتش بندہ اند
بامن وتو مردہ باحق زندہ اند
“The earth, the air, the water and the fire, all are servants of Allah. To me and to you they are dead, but to Allah they are full of life.”
It is reported in a Hadith: When Allah wills to do something everything turns in favour of that purpose. Therefore, nothing is more powerful against an enemy than seeking Allah’s help with all the sincerity of one’s heart. Simply uttering out some formula words for seeking help are not enough.
The second important ingredient of the recipe is being patient. The Arabic word ‘Sabr’ rendered as patience literally signifies to keep oneself under one’s control against unfavourable happenings. It is common knowledge that nothing significant can be achieved without undergoing difficulties and hardships. One who readily prepares himself to face hardships is generally successful in most of his objec¬tives. The Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said in a Tradition, “No greater blessing has been given to anyone other than patience.” (Abu Dawud)
قَالُوْٓا اُوْذِيْنَا مِنْ قَبْلِ اَنْ تَاْتِيَنَا وَمِنْۢ بَعْدِ مَا جِئْتَنَا ۭ قَالَ عَسٰي رَبُّكُمْ اَنْ يُّهْلِكَ عَدُوَّكُمْ
The Israelites who seemed to have no conception of such matters could not understand how patience alone could free them from Pharaoh’s punishment and bring them success against him. They blamed the prophet Musa (عليه السلام) saying:
قَالُوا أُوذِينَا مِن قَبْلِ أَن تَأْتِيَنَا وَمِن بَعْدِ مَا جِئْتَنَا
We have been persecuted before you came to us as well as after you came to us.”
What they meant, perhaps, was that they were looking for a prophet to deliver them from the oppression of the Pharaoh, but their fate remained unchanged even after he came to them. The prophet Musa answered to them:
عَسَىٰ رَبُّكُمْ أَن يُهْلِكَ عَدُوَّكُمْ وَيَسْتَخْلِفَكُمْ فِي الْأَرْضِ فَيَنظُرَ كَيْفَ تَعْمَلُونَ
‘It is likely that your Lord will destroy your enemy and make you successors in the earth that He may see how then, you act.’
Sovereignty is a test
The last phrase of the verse has provided with a wise observation that sovereignty or dominion is not in itself an aim or objective but a means to achieve the objective of making peace and justice prevail in the land. Sovereignty or dominion is a sacred trust bestowed upon by Allah for making good prevail over evil. The verse has warned them that, in case they are bestowed this trust, they should not forget the ill fate of those who were before them.
Though the direct addressee of the verse are the Israelites, but indirectly the verse has thrown a warning to all those trusted with rule or dominion. Sovereignty or power, in fact, belongs to Allah alone. Allah has made man his deputy on the earth. He is the One who designates man with power and takes it away when He so wills. This is what the following verse means:
تُؤْتِي الْمُلْكَ مَن تَشَاءُ وَتَنزِعُ الْمُلْكَ مِمَّن تَشَاءُ
You give power to whom You please, and You strip off power from whom You please.” (3:26)
The power and rule, therefore, is a test for the rulers to see how far they have fulfilled their duty of establishing peace and justice and making good prevail over evil.
Abu Hayyan in his Tafsir Al-Bahr-al Muhit has included the following event under the comments on this verse: ` Amr ibn ` Ubaid once visited Mansur, the second caliph of the Abbaside dynasty, prior to his designation to caliphate and recited this verse: ‘It is likely that Allah will destroy your enemy and make you successor in the earth.’ This was a sort of prediction by ` Amr ibn ` Ubaid of his succession to the throne. Soon after Mansur succeeded to the throne and became the Caliph. ` Amr ibn ` Ubaid came to the Caliph again. Mansur reminded him of the prediction made by him. Amr ibn ` Ubaid instantly answered, “Well, the first part of the prediction has come true and you have become the Caliph, but the second part of it still remains unful¬filled. The verse also contains this phrase, فَیَنظُرَ کَیفَ تَعمَلُون “Then, He will see how you act.” Amr ibn ` Ubaid suggested that gaining power is not a matter of pride because thereafter, Allah judges the acts of those in authority and sees how they make use of this trust.
فَاَرْسَلْنَا عَلَيْهِمُ الطُّوْفَانَ وَالْجَرَادَ وَالْقُمَّلَ وَالضَّفَادِعَ وَالدَّمَ اٰيٰتٍ مُّفَصَّلٰتٍ فَاسْتَكْبَرُوْا وَكَانُوْاقَوْمًا مُّجْرِمِيْنَ
The above verses relate the next part of the story of the prophet Musa (عليه السلام) and the people of Pharaoh. According to historical reports, the prophet Musa (عليه السلام) stayed in Egypt for 20 years. He kept preaching consistently and conveyed the message of Allah to them. He was given nine miracles during his stay in Egypt which served as warnings to the people of Pharaoh. The Holy Qur’an has referred to the nine miracles in these words وَلَقَدْ آتَيْنَا مُوسَىٰ تِسْعَ آيَاتٍ. “Surely, We gave him nine miracles.”
Out of the nine miracles, two were performed before Pharaoh and his people. The third miracle was of famine reported in verse 130. The above verses speak of the remaining six miracles. The verse 133 has mentioned five punishments coming to the people of Pharaoh. All these punishments have been termed as ‘signs distinct from each other.’ According to the comments of the respected Companion ‘Abdullah ibn ` Abbas (رض) each of these punishments lasted for a fixed period of time followed by a period of relief followed, by the next punishment.
Ibn-al-Mundhir has cited from the Companion ` Abdullah ibn ` Abbas (رض) that each punishment lasted for seven days starting from Saturday, then they were given three weeks of relief. Imam al-Baghawi, citing the Companion ‘Abdullah ibn ` Abbas (رض) said that the first time when they were relieved of famine by asking the prophet Musa (عليه السلام) to pray Allah for their relief, they did not keep the promise of believing in Allah. The prophet Musa (عليه السلام) prayed Allah that they may be inflicted with some painful punishment so that it serves as a lesson to his people and to their descendants. Allah first sent a storm upon them. According to great commentators, this was a flood. All the lands and houses of the people of Pharaoh were filled and surrounded by the water leaving for them no place for farming and living in their homes. The strange thing about it was that the lands and houses of the Israe¬lites were not affected by the water of the flood.
In a state of great distress they came to the prophet Musa (عليه السلام) and requested him to pray Allah for their relief from this calamity. They promised that if they are relieved from the flood they would embrace faith in Allah and let the Israelites go with him from Egypt. The prayer of the prophet was acceded to and the storm subsided. It is reported that their fields were more fertile and productive than before. Again they did not keep their promise and said that the storm was not a punishment from Allah. Rather it came to their benefit and the increase in the produce was the result of the flood and that Musa (عليه السلام) had nothing to do with it.
A period of respite was given to them to reflect and realize their error. After a period of one month another punishment was sent to them in the form of locusts which ate up all the crops and fruits. Some reports say that the locusts devoured even their doors and roofs made of wood and other things of their houses. Again they were surprised to notice that the locusts did not do any harm to the houses and fields of the Israelites which were quite close to them. Once again they cried for help and implored to the prophet Musa (عليه السلام) to pray his Lord for taking away this punishment from them and that they make firm promise to believe in him and free the Israelites after their relief. The prophet Musa (عليه السلام) prayed Allah for their relief again and they got rid of this chastisement.
Seeing that they were left with enough grain to suffice them for one year, they turned against their promise and showed arrogance as before. Once again, a period of peace and relief followed. The third punishment came to them of ‘Qummal’ rendered here as pest. Qummal in Arabic is used for ‘louse’ as well as for an insect which eats up grain. It is possible that both kinds of insects were sent to them, that is, small pests started to eat up their grain while equally large number of lice ate up even their hair and eyelashes. Exasperated as they were, they came again to prophet Musa (عليه السلام) and asked him to pray Allah for their riddance, promising again their acceptance of the true faith and release of the Israelites. He prayed Allah for their relief and Allah relieved them of this punishment too.
The fourth punishment was of the frogs. The frogs were created in such a large number in their houses that they covered them up to their necks. The frogs covered them in their beds when they came to sleep. All of their cooking pans and utensils and their household were full of frogs. Being highly disgusted with this situation they came again to prophet Musa (عليه السلام) with all their old promises, and asked him to pray for their deliverance. This time also they were relieved of this punishment. They were given enough time to correct themselves but those who incur Allah’s wrath are deprived of positive thinking. This time when they were in peace they said that they were sure that Musa (عليه السلام) was a sorcerer and not a messenger of Allah. Those mishaps to them were the effect of his sorcery.
After a month of relief the next punishment visiting them was that of blood. Everything of their use turned into blood. Their drinks, their food and their water became all blood before they could use them. As they took out water from the wells or tanks it turned into blood. History has reported it was strange that whenever the Egyptians and the Israelites sat together for meal the morsel of food taken by the Egyptian became all blood, while the one taken by an Israelite did not change. This punishment too lasted for seven days. They were relieved of this punishment through the prayer of the Prophet Musa (عليه السلام) after their usual false promises.
The people of Pharaoh were subjected to the above five punish¬ments one after another but they persisted in their arrogance and showed no sign of taking lesson from these warnings.
وَاَوْرَثْنَا الْقَوْمَ الَّذِيْنَ كَانُوْا يُسْتَضْعَفُوْنَ مَشَارِقَ الْاَرْضِ وَمَغَارِبَهَا الَّتِيْ بٰرَكْنَا فِيْهَا
The previous verses contained an account of the warnings from Allah to the people of Pharaoh. The present verses speak of their ignominious end, and of the success of the Israelites. The verse 137 said, “And We made the people, who were taken to be weak, the inheritors of the land, of easts and wests which We had blessed.” The verse did not say, the people who were weak, rather it said, those who were taken as weak. It implies that those having Allah as their support can never be weak in the real sense of the word, though they may seem so from their apparent condition. People finally come to realise that they are not weak. It is because dignity and honour all belong to Allah. The verse has used the term inheritance for their domination in the land to indicate that like a son who deserves to be a real inheritor of his father’s land and possessions, the Israelites were the real inheritors of the land and wealth of Pharaoh’s people.
The words ‘east’ and ‘west’ have been used in plural perhaps to denote the different points of sunset and sunrise in winter and summer time. The word ‘land’, according to all experts in exegesis, refers to the land of Egypt and Syria which was brought under the domination of the Israelites after the people of Pharaoh and the Amaleks were destroyed. The phrase ‘Which We had blessed’ refers to the lands of Syria and Egypt. The Holy Qur’an has referred to Syria as the land of Barakah (blessing). Similarly the land of Egypt has been referred to as the land of blessing in a number of Traditions. The Caliph ‘Umar ibn al-Khattab (رض) has referred to river Nile as the prince of all rivers. The Companion ` Abdullah Ibn ` Umar (رض) said that Egypt has nine parts of blessing out of ten. The tenth part has been divided throughout the earth. (Al-Bahr-a-Muhit)
In short, the verse has to say that the people who were considered weak and abject were made the rulers of the land possessed by those who showed arrogance. It shows how the promise made by Allah and His Messenger came out true as it always does. The verse said, ‘The sublime word of your Lord was fulfilled.’ The promise in this verse either refers to the promise made by the prophet Musa (عليه السلام) with his people mentioned in verse 129 which said, ‘It is very likely that our Lord will destroy your enemy and make you successor in the earth.’ Or it refers to the promise made by Allah to the Israelites in a verse of Surah Al-Qasas (the Stories) It said, “
وَنُرِيدُ أَن نَّمُنَّ عَلَى الَّذِينَ اسْتُضْعِفُوا فِي الْأَرْضِ وَنَجْعَلَهُمْ أَئِمَّةً وَنَجْعَلَهُمُ الْوَارِثِينَ ﴿5﴾ وَنُمَكِّنَ لَهُمْ فِي الْأَرْضِ وَنُرِيَ فِرْعَوْنَ وَهَامَانَ وَجُنُودَهُمَا مِنْهُم مَّا كَانُوا يَحْذَرُونَ ﴿6﴾
“And it was Our will that We favour those considered weak in the earth and make them leaders, and make them the inheri¬tors, and give them power in the land, and show Pharaoh, Haman and their armies, the very thing they dreaded.” (28:5-6)
In fact, both the above promises are one and the same. The promise made by the prophet Musa (عليه السلام) .1t obviously was derived by the promise of Allah. This favour of Allah upon the people of Israel was the reward of their patience, as the verse has specified saying ‘Because they stood patient.’ That is, they were favoured by Allah for their being patient in their distress. This has an understated indica¬tion that any people or individual following the same example, at any time and in any place, shall get the same reward. The prophet Musa (عليه السلام) when making the promise of gaining the rule over the land had emphatically said that perseverance, patience and seeking help from Allah was the only key to success.
Sheikh Hasan al-Basri (رح) said that the verse suggested that in case one is not as powerful as to defend himself against an enemy, the best way to success is to remain patient. He said when a person who has been wronged, tries to take revenge on his own by doing wrong to his opponent Allah leaves him alone and lets him manage his own affairs, ending in success or facing a failure. On the contrary, when one seeks help from Allah against the affliction from others and remains patient, Allah opens the door of success upon him. As the above promise for the rule over the land was fulfilled by Allah, the same kind of promise Allah made with the people of the prophet Muhammad (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) in a verse of Surah Al-Nur:
” وَعَدَ اللَّـهُ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا مِنكُمْ وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ لَيَسْتَخْلِفَنَّهُمْ فِي الْأَرْضِ كَمَا اسْتَخْلَفَ الَّذِينَ مِن قَبْلِهِمْ
“Allah has promised those of you who believe and do good deeds that he will make them inherit the land, as He had inherited those who were before them.” (24:55)
As the Israelites witnessed the fulfillment of Allah’s promise by having their rule over the land, similarly the Muslim Ummah witnessed the fulfillment of Allah’s promise in the form of their sove¬reignty over the major part of the earth (Ruh al-Bayan). It is not justified to say that the Israelites did not observe patience, because when Prophet Musa (عليه السلام) asked them to be patient they said that they were persecuted before and after he came to them. Firstly, because their patience against the constant persecution at the hands of Pharaoh and his people is a proven fact. Secondly, the above state¬ment might not be a complaint but a simple expression of their grief. Thereafter, the verse said, وَدَمَّرْنَا مَا كَانَ يَصْنَعُ فِرْعَوْنُ وَقَوْمُهُ وَمَا كَانُوا يَعْرِشُونَ “And We destroyed whatever Pharaoh and his people used to build and what they used to raise high.” This refers to the buildings they raised high and their trees etc. ‘What they used to build’ may also refer to their ill designs against the prophet Musa عليه السلام ‘What they used to raise high’ is a reference to their mansions and to their trees.
The events discussed up to this point were related to the destruc¬tion of Pharaoh and his people. The next verses describe the victory and success of the Israelites followed by their insolence in spite of all the blessings they received from Allah. These verses provide a kind of solace to the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) against his grief at the obstinacy of the unbelievers, by showing the annoyance of the early prophets at the hands of their people.
وَوٰعَدْنَا مُوْسٰي ثَلٰثِيْنَ لَيْلَةً وَّاَتْمَمْنٰهَا بِعَشْرٍ فَتَمَّ مِيْقَاتُ رَبِّهٖٓ اَرْبَعِيْنَ لَيْلَةً
This verse speaks of the period followed by the destruction of the Pharaoh and his people. Having a peaceful time after their deliverance from the Pharaoh and his people the Israelites requested the Prophet Musa (عليه السلام) to have some religious system of law so that they may act upon it. The Prophet Musa (عليه السلام) prayed Allah for a code of guidance for them. The Arabic word: واعدنا “wa` adana’ is a derivative of وعدہ ; wa` dah’ which signifies a worded expression of offering something good to someone – a promise.
Allah made a promise to Musa (عليه السلام) to send His word to him. It was stipulated that Musa (عليه السلام) should go to the mount of Sinai and pass thirty nights there sitting in devotion for Allah. These thirty nights were later supplemented with ten more nights to make them forty.
There are some points in this verse which demand our attention: Firstly, the number of nights to be passed by the Prophet Musa (عليه السلام) was fixed to be forty nights in the will of Allah. Why was he first asked to pass thirty nights, and then add ten more nights? No one, in fact, can have access to all the wisdom and insight contained in divine acts. The scholars, however, have provided with some explanations: The famous commentary ‘Ruh al-Bayan’ states that one of the wisdom behind the above commandment is of enjoining the laws gradually or by degrees to make it easier for people to practice. The commentary ‘Tafsir al-Qurtubi’ has said that this was for educating those in authority to give respite to their subordinates if they fail to complete their assignments in the prescribed time. This is what happened with Prophet Musa (عليه السلام) . When the spiritual excellence that was required could not be achieved by him in thirty nights, ten more nights were added to give him more time to acquire required perfection.
The commentators have reported that the Prophet Musa (عليه السلام) kept fasting constantly for thirty days and nights without breaking his fast in between. After completing thirty days he took the breakfast and presented himself at the fixed point on the Mount Sinai, Allah said to him that the peculiar odor generated by fasting in one’s mouth is liked by Allah. Musa had lost the odor by brushing his teeth, he was therefore, required to observe fasting for ten more days in order to create the odor again.
The above reports of the loss of odor, however, cannot be taken to mean that brushing the teeth after fasting is prohibited or is something disliked, firstly, because the above report has been cited without the chain of narrators and secondly because it could be a command¬ment meant specifically for the Prophet Musa (عليه السلام) and not for other people, or peculiar to the followers of the Torah. The permissibility of brushing one’s teeth during fasting is a practice proved by the Holy Tradition. Al-Baihaqi has reported the following Tradition on the authority of Sayyidah A’ishah that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said: خَیرُ خَصَایٔلِ الصَّایٔم اَلسِّوَاکُ . The best act of the one who is fasting is brushing one’s teeth (with miswak). Al-Jami’ al-Saghir has said that the status of this Hadith is that of Hasan (a kind of authentic Tradition).
One may wonder here how the Prophet Musa (عليه السلام) could be fasting continuously for thirty days without making a breakfast even at nights, while during his travel for visiting Sayyidna Khizr (Al Khadir عليه السلام) he could not wait for even half of the day and said آتِنَا غَدَاءَنَا لَقَدْ لَقِينَا مِن سَفَرِنَا هَـٰذَا نَصَبًا “Give us our food, because this journey has made us tired.” Tafsir Ruh al-Bayan has explained that this difference was due to the different nature of journeys. This journey was of a created being for another created being while the journey on the mount of Sinai was for the Creator of a devoted created being who had separated himself from the Creation in quest of his Lord. This spiri¬tual journey weakened the vigour of physical demands of hunger and thirst, making him capable of observing fast for continuous thirty days and nights.
Lunar or Solar Calendars
Another point inferred from this verse is that the laws’ of the Prophets (علیہم السلام) counted the change of their dates at night. The above verse also has made a mention of thirty nights instead of thirty days. It is because the lunar calendar was the standard calendar in the laws of the Prophets (علیہم السلام) . The beginning of the lunar month is based on sighting of the moon which is possible only at night. It is why the dates in lunar calendar are changed at sunset. Al-Qurtubi has reported this statement on the authority of Ibn al-Arabi حِسابُ الشَّمسِ لِلمَنافِعِ و حِسَابُ اَلقَمَرِ لِلمَنَاسِکِ “The solar Calendar is for the benefits in worldly matters while the lunar Calendar is for religious observances.”
According to the commentary of the Companion Abdullah Ibn ` Abbas (رض) the thirty nights were the nights of Zul Qa’dah, the eleventh month of the lunar Calendar. The ten nights added to them were the first ten nights of Zul-Hijjah. This makes us understand that the Torah was given to the Prophet Musa (عليه السلام) on the day of Eid-al Adha. (Qurtubi)
The significance of number forty
This verse also implies that the number forty has some special effect in spiritual rectification of one’s heart. It is reported in a Tradi¬tion of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) that anyone who worships Allah for forty days with sincerity of his heart, his heart is made a source of wisdom. (Ruh al-Bayan)
This verse also educates people to fix a period of time for the fulfillment of their objective and to approach their aims gradually, as it is the practice of Allah to do things gradually. Haste and hurry in doing things is not approved by Allah. By creating the universe in six days while Allah had all the powers to create it instantly without requiring a single moment, He has provided people with a wise principle that they should approach their ends by stages in a period of time so that they may give due attention to their objectives. The Torah was also not given to the Prophet Musa (عليه السلام) in a moment but a period was fixed for it to emphasize the same practice. (Qurtubi)
It was by ignoring this principle that the Israelites had lost their faith in Allah. The Prophet Musa (عليه السلام) while leaving for the mount of Sinai had said that he would be away for thirty days. When he did not return in this period due to being retained for the next ten days, the Israelites, being unduly hasty people said that the Prophet Musa (عليه السلام) was lost somewhere, so they should choose another leader for their guidance. Consequently, they fell prey to the sorcerer Samiri and started worshipping the golden calf. Had they been a people of patience and practised gradualism, they would have not committed the fatal error of infidelity. The next sentence of the verse said, وَقَالَ مُوسَىٰ لِأَخِيهِ هَارُونَ اخْلُفْنِي فِي قَوْمِي وَأَصْلِحْ وَلَا تَتَّبِعْ سَبِيلَ الْمُفْسِدِينَ “Musa (عليه السلام) said to his brother Harun, “ Take my place among my people and keep things right, and do not follow the way of mischief makers.” This sentence also contains some observations of religious importance.
Making one’s deputy when needed
The Prophet Musa (عليه السلام) made it a point to appoint Sayyidna Harun as his deputy when he intended to leave for the mount of Sinai and said that he should take the responsibility of his people in his absence. This makes it imperative for those who hold some responsible office that they appoint someone to look after the work in their absence.
The Holy Prophet used to appoint someone as his deputy whenever he used to leave Madinah. The Companions ` Ali and ` Abdullah ibn Umm Maktum (رض) were appointed as his deputies on different occasions. (Qurtubi)
The Prophet Musa (عليه السلام) gave certain instructions to the Prophet Harun (عليه السلام) before his departure to the mount of Sinai, indicating that leaving instructions or guidelines for the deputy is also a religious requirement. The first instruction given by the Prophet Musa (عليه السلام) was just a word اَصلِح “ that is, ‘set right’. The object of this imperative has not been mentioned. Possibly, he made it a general command to be observed by the Israelites and the Prophet Harun (عليه السلام) as well.
The second instruction was in these words: وَلَا تَتَّبِعْ سَبِيلَ الْمُفْسِدِينَ “And do not follow the way of mischief-makers.” It is obvious that Prophet Harun (عليه السلام) being a Prophet of Allah could not be supposed to indulge in mischief. This instruction, therefore, meant that he should not do any such thing as could help or encourage the mischief makers. This is exactly what the Prophet Harun (عليه السلام) did when he saw his people following the magician Samiri, so much so that they started worship-ping the golden calf. The Prophet Harun (عليه السلام) prevented them from this act as well as admonished Samiri against his mischief. Later, the Prophet Musa (عليه السلام) ، called him to account for this act of theirs, thinking that it was the result of inefficiency on the part of the Prophet Harun (عليه السلام) . This also serves as a lesson for those who do not care for orderly disposition of matters and take it as a sign of piousness.
وَاكْتُبْ لَنَا فِيْ هٰذِهِ الدُّنْيَا حَسَـنَةً وَّفِي الْاٰخِرَةِ اِنَّا هُدْنَآ اِلَيْكَ
The verse 156 contains the last portion of the prayer. It said: وَاكْتُبْ لَنَا فِي هَـٰذِهِ الدُّنْيَا حَسَنَةً وَفِي الْآخِرَةِ إِنَّا هُدْنَا إِلَيْكَ “ And write for us good in this world and in this world and in the Hereafter. We turn to you in repentance.” Allah Almighty answered in response to this request: عَذَابِي أُصِيبُ بِهِ مَنْ أَشَاءُ ۖ وَرَحْمَتِي وَسِعَتْ كُلَّ شَيْءٍ ۚ فَسَأَكْتُبُهَا لِلَّذِينَ يَتَّقُونَ وَيُؤْتُونَ الزَّكَاةَ وَالَّذِينَ هُم بِآيَاتِنَا يُؤْمِنُونَ
“As for My punishment, I afflict with it whom I will. And My Mercy extends to everything. So I shall write it for those who fear, and pay Zakah and those who do believe in Our verses”.
That is, though all the disobedient deserve the punishment of Allah but out of His mercy, which encircles everything, even the wrath of Allah, He afflicts with His punishment only a few whom He wills. His mercy is as great as includes everything, even those who rebel Allah and deny Him are shown some of His mercy, though it is limited to this world alone. When His mercy is so covering that it includes even the disobedient, He will surely write it for those who deserve it by fearing Allah, paying Zakah and by believing in His verses. Then the Prophet Musa (عليه السلام) was given the good news of its acceptance.
The Commentators have varied opinion about the above interpretation of this prayer. This verse has no indication of the acceptance of his prayer in clear words as in other cases the approval of his prayers has been clearly mentioned. For example, the approval of his prayer has been mentioned in these words at another occasion (20:36): قَدْ أُوتِيتَ سُؤْلَكَ يَا مُوسَىٰ “ O Musa you are given what you asked for_” It is mentioned in another verse (10:89) أُجِيبَت دَّعْوَتُكُمَا (0! Musa and Harun) your prayer has been accepted.” At this occasion (7:156), no mention of such approval has been made. Some commentators have, therefore, suggested that this prayer of the Prophet Musa (عليه السلام) was not accepted in favour (عليه السلام) of the Israelites, rather, it was accepted in favour of the Muslim Ummah. The author of Ruh al-Ma’ani has, however, said it to be a remote possibility.
The correct interpretation, therefore, is that the Prayer of the Prophet Musa (عليه السلام) was comprised of two requests. The first was of mercy and forgiveness for those who were punished, and second for writing the good for him and his people both in this world and in the Hereafter. The acceptance of the first request is mentioned in this verse while the answer to the second request has been mentioned in the next verse (157). In response to his first request he was told that Allah does not punish everyone who acts sinfully. He punishes only a few whom He will for their transgression. Therefore these people also shall not be punished. His Mercy is as great as covers every creation of Allah. Even those who are punished are not completely deprived of His mercy, since they could get harder punishment than they got. Allah has all the powers to do everything He wills.
The Satan claimed that according to this verse he was also the subject of His mercy because His mercy is said to be extending to everything and he was one of ‘everything.’
My teacher, the Sheikh Anwar Kashmiri has said that this verse has indicated that His mercy can encircle everything. It did not say that His mercy shall encircle everything. In another verse of the Holy Qur’an it has been said in more clear words:
فَإِن كَذَّبُوكَ فَقُل رَّبُّكُمْ ذُو رَحْمَةٍ وَاسِعَةٍ وَلَا يُرَدُّ بَأْسُهُ عَنِ الْقَوْمِ الْمُجْرِمِينَ ﴿147﴾
“If they disbelieve in you say: ‘Your Lord has all encompassing mercy; but His punishment cannot be warded off from the evil-doers-6:147.”
This has made it clear that vastness of His mercy does not preclude the sinners from being punished by Him.
In short, the first part of the invocation of the Prophet Musa (عليه السلام) in favour of these people for mercy and forgiveness was instantly granted, but the second part asking for writing the perfect favour of Allah both in this world and in the Hereafter was stipulated with certain conditions. That is, as far as this world is concerned Allah can
make His mercy common to all without regard to their belief or disbelief, but the Hereafter is a distinct world where His Mercy shall be limited only to those who fulfill certain conditions. Firstly, those who fear Allah and take to piety that is, they fulfill all their religious obliga-tions and avoid things forbidden by Allah, and pay Zakah regularly out of their earnings, and thirdly, those who, firmly believe in His verses without offering any pretences or false interpretations to them. If these people too, fulfill the above conditions, the perfect favour shall be written for them both in this world and in the Hereafter.
The next verse, however, has indicated that people who shall perfectly fit the above description will be those coming after them in the last age, and follow the last Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) ، consequently deserving perfect Mercy or favour of Allah. According to the report of Qatadah cited above, the Satan claimed that he also deserves the Mercy of Allah, for His Mercy extends to everything but the condition of ‘Iman (belief) etc. specified in the verse excluded him. Similarly, the Jews and the Christians claimed that they too believed in Allah and paid Zakah, therefore, they shall also get the perfect Mercy of in the worlds. The next verse, however, included the condition of belief in the last Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) and in the verses of the Qur’an. This has excluded the Jews and the Christians who did not believe in the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) .
اَلَّذِيْنَ يَتَّبِعُوْنَ الرَّسُوْلَ النَّبِيَّ الْاُمِّيَّ الَّذِيْ يَجِدُوْنَهٗ مَكْتُوْبًا عِنْدَهُمْ فِي التَّوْرٰىةِ وَالْاِنْجِيْلِ
The Distinct virtues of the Muslim Ummah
This verse speaks of the people who, in actual sense, deserve the perfect Mercy and complete favour of Allah asked by the Prophet Musa (عليه السلام) for his people. It said that the people fulfilling the conditions, referred to in the previous verse, in real sense are those who follow the unlettered Messenger of Allah. The verse, while speaking of these people, described certain distinctive qualities of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) . Then the verse enjoined not only belief in him but also following the commands and practice of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) . This makes us understand that in conjunction with belief in Allah, practicing the Sunnah (the practices) and the Sharl’ah (The Law) of the Holy Prophet صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم is imperative for eternal success in the Hereafter.
The phrase الرَّسُولَ النَّبِيَّ الْأُمِّيَّ “The Messenger, the unlettered prophet”, has mentioned three qualities of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) . The Arabic word: أُمِّيَّ ‘Ummi rendered as unlettered signifies a person who does not know the art of reading and writing. The Holy Qur’an has referred to the Arabs as: اُمِّیین ‘Ummiyyin’ because the Arabs generally had very little to do with reading and writing. Being incapable of reading and writing is, obviously not a quality, rather it is an indication of imper¬fection. No matter how unusual it may seem, the same sign of imperfection has come to serve the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) as a sign of his perfec¬tion of the highest degree, taking in view the unparallel erudition and exemplary wisdom and learning preached and demonstrated by him.
A demonstration of perfect wisdom, showing wise practices and behaviour by a man of letters is considered to be a fruit of his educa¬tion, but when these and many other attributes of perfections of the highest humanly imaginable degree come out of a personality, who did not even know how to read and write, makes it as bright a miracle as daylight. It is more surprising when we see him living in Makkah el-Mukarramah for forty years without ever having any opportunity to learn. Exactly when he is forty years of age, suddenly he starts speaking things of such great wisdom and, in such a linguistic style and diction that none in the world could produce a match of even the smallest part of this word – the Qur’an1. This is, indeed, a self-evident witness affirming that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) was the true Messenger of Allah and Qur’an, the true word of Allah. The quality of being unlettered, therefore, may be a defect for others but for the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) it is a commendable attribute.2
1.-The author here, refers to a verse of the Holy Qur’an (2:23) throwing a challenge to the whole world to produce a surah (chapter) comparable to any of the Qur’anic Surahs. Inability in meeting this challenge by the Arabs who were as boastful of their oratory as to call the whole mankind excepting themselves, the Ajam signifying a dumb person is certainly a clear evidence of the miraculous character of the Holy Qur’an. (Translator)
2.-The verse under discussion has mentioned this attributes as Messenger and Prophet. This Qur’anic witness is enough to show that his being unlettered was equally a great attribute of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) . (Translator)] claim, which is a witness of the truth that the Torah and the Injil current in that period contained transparent references to the Holy Prophet . Otherwise, the Jews and the Christians would have used it as against this Qur’anic claim.
The fourth quality of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) mentioned in this verse is that they shall find him written in the Torah and the Injil (Evangel). It may be noted that the verse did not say that they will find his attributes or indications written in the Books. It said that they will find him written in their revelations. It is an implicit indication that the attributes and qualities of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) mentioned in the Torah or the Injil shall be so expressive and with as clear details as seeing them will be similar to seeing the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) himself. The mention of the Torah and the Injil, without a reference to the Zabur (The Book revealed to the Prophet Dawud (عليه السلام) [ David ]) is because the Christians and the Jews believed in them, otherwise Zabur also contained the description of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) .
The Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) in the early Books
The Present versions of the Torah and the Injil, having undergone great changes and distortions have lost their essential quality of being original and trustworthy. Despite this fact, they still contain expres¬sions bearing reference to the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) . Besides, it is obvious that the Holy Qur’an had declared, in definite terms, that the Torah and Injil contained the descriptions of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) . The Jews and the Christians living in the period of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) would have used this Qur’anic claim against the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) and the Muslims, in case this claim could be proved as not corresponding to reality. We find that neither did the Jews nor the Christians ever try to refute this claim, which is a witness of the truth that the Torah and the Injil current in that period contained transparent references to the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) . Otherwise, the Jews and the Christians would have used it as against this Qur’ anic claim.
It may be noted that some of the attributes and qualities of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) mentioned in these books have been reported in the Holy Qur’an with reference to the Torah and the Injil, while some other attributes have been reported in the Holy Traditions (Hadith) by those new Muslims who read them in these book themselves, and later they had converted to Islam after reading such descriptions.
Al-Baihaqi has reported the following event in Dala’il-al Nubuwwah. The Companion Anas (رض) has reported that a boy from the Jews was in the service of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) . Once he was sick, the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) went to his house where he saw the father of the lad reciting some parts of the Torah beside his bed. The Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said to the father, “I bid you to tell me by the pledge of Allah if you find descriptions in the Torah indicating my coming as a prophet and referring to my attributes?” He negated it. The son instantly said “O Prophet of Allah, my father is wrong. We find you and your attributes mentioned in the Torah. I bear witness that there is no god but Allah and that you are the Messenger of Allah.” The Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) bade his Companions that they should perform his funeral ceremonies, after his death, according to Islam because he was a Muslim, after this witness. (Mazhari)
Sayyidna ` Ali (رض) has reported that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) owed some money to a Jew. He demanded the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) to pay him the money back and said to him in a harsh tone that he will not let him go until he gets his money back. The Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said to him that the Jew had a right on him, and sat down by him saying that he will not go until he lets him go willingly. The Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) remained there for the whole day and night. He offered the Zuhr, ` Asr, Maghrib and ` Isha’, and Fajr of the next day (from mid day to the next morning). The Companions (رض) were greatly annoyed at this behaviour from the Jew. They were secretly admonishing the Jew so that he may let the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) go. The Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) having some idea asked them of what they were doing. They said that it was unbearable for them to see the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) in the custody of a Jew. The Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said to them, “My Lord has prohibited me from doing wrong to anyone under the covenant.”
Next morning, the Jew who was highly impressed by this remarkable experience, came to the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) and declared:
اَشھَدُ اَنَّ لا إله إلا اللہ و اَشھَدُ اَنَّ مُحَمَّدَ رَّسُولُ اَلله
“I bear witness that there is no god but Allah, and I bear witness that you are the Messenger of Allah.”
Subsequent to this declaration of his faith in Allah he said that by detaining the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) he meant nothing but to test the truth of his attributes mentioned in the Torah. He said that he had read the following description concerning him in the Torah. He also declared to give away half of his wealth in the way of Allah. The description given by him is this:
“Muhammad, the son of ` Abdullah. He shall be born in Makkah. The place of his migration shall be Madinah. His country will be Syria. He shall neither be a man of harsh temperament, nor shall he speak roughly. He shall not make noise in bazars. He shall be away from the acts of immodesty.”
He said that he found out the truth of this description in him. He was a wealthy person, and half of his wealth was a considerable amount for the Muslims. (The above incident has been reported by Mazhari with reference to Da1a’il al-Nubuwwah by Baihaqi)
Imam al-Baghawi has reported on the authority of Ka’ab Ahbar that the Torah contained the following description with regard to the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) .
“Muhammad is the Messenger and chosen servant of Allah. He is neither a man of harsh temperament nor is he a man of disagreeable speech. He does not cry in bazars, nor does he return ill when ill is done to him. He forgives or ignores the wrong-doers.”
“His birth place is Makkah and his migration shall be to Taybah (Madinah). His country is Syria and his people shall be hammadin. That is they shall praise Allah when in comfort and when in trouble. They shall say Takbir when ascending in their travel.They shall watch the shadows in order to ascer¬tain proper time of their prayers.”
“He shall wear a sheet of cloth round his waist and keep his hands and feet clean with ablution وُضُو (Wudu). His man calling for prayer shall raise his voice in the air. In battle fields they shall line up as closely as in prayers. At nights their recita¬tions shall be heard like humming of the bees.”
Ibn ` Asakir and Ibn Sa’d have cited full chain of narrators saying that Sahl Maula Khuthaimah has informed that he had read the following description concerning the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) in the Injil (Evangel):
“He shall neither be short nor shall he be tall. Colour shall be fair, hair in two locks. He shall bear a seal of prophethood on his body between shoulders. He shall not accept alms, shall ride on camel and by himself shall he milk the goat, and wear the patched clothes.” He shall be in the line of Isma’il. His name shall be Ahmad:
Ibn Sa’d in his book ‘Tabaqat’, Darimi in his Musnad and Baihaqi in his book Dala’il al-Nubuwwah have reported on the authority of Sayyidna ` Abdullah ibn Salam, who was a great scholar of the Jews. He said that Torah had contained the following description with regard to the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) .
“0 Prophet, We have sent you as a witness over all the nations of the world, as the bearer of good tidings to the right¬eous, as a warner to the wrong doers and as Protector of the Ummiyyin’ the unlettered Arabs. You are My Messenger and servant. I have named you, ‘Mutawakkil’ (One who trusts Allah). You are neither a man of harsh temperament, nor quarrelling, nor crying in the markets. You do not return evil in response to evil, rather forgive or ignore the wrong-doers. Allah shall not let him die until he sets the crooked right and make them believe in Allah exclusively, until he makes the blind eyes see, dumb ears hear and sealed hearts open.”
Sahih al-Bukhari also contains a similar description on the authority of Sayyidna ` Amr ibn al-` As (رض) . Besdes, al-Baihaqi has reported the following statement in Dala’il-al-Nubuwwah, on the authority of Wahb ibn Munabbih, the great scholar and expert in the early books.
“Allah revealed to the Prophet Dawud (عليه السلام) (David) in the Zabur as follows: ‘0, Dawud, there shall come a Prophet after you. His name shall be Ahmad. I shall never be displeased with him, nor he shall ever be disobedient to me. I have forgiven all of his errors and omissions. I have enjoined upon his people, the optional as well as the obligatory prayers that I had enjoined upon the early Prophets. On the day of judgment they shall come before me having the light similar to the light of the early prophets. 0 Dawud, I have blessed Muhammad and his people with excellence over the people of other prophets. I have favoured them with six special concessions which I did not concede to the early people. They shall not be punished for their inadvertent omissions. I shall forgive their unintentional sins if they seek My forgiveness. The money they shall spend willingly in My way, I shall give them manifold in return in this world also.”
Those who shall say إِنَّا لِلَّـهِ وَإِنَّا إِلَيْهِ رَاجِعُونَ “We belong to Allah, and to Him we are to return,” whenever they are faced with some distress, I shall turn their distress into blessing and mercy and a means of his guidance to paradise. I shall accede to their invocations, sometimes, by giving them what they asked for, and sometimes, by storing their prayers to be granted on the Day of Judgment.” (Ruh-al-Ma` ani)
The above are only a few out of hundreds of such Traditions which have been collected by the religious scholars in separate volumes, among them is Sheikh Rahmat Allah Kairanvi of India who has dealt with this subject thoroughly in his book ‘Izhar al-Haqq’. He has given specific examples of such descriptions found in the current versions of the Bible, despite the fact that they have been robbed originality through innumerable changes and distortions by the Judo-Christian theologians. The Urdu version of this remarkable work has been published in Pakistan1.
- By the grace of Allah, I have the honour of rendering this work into English. Three volumes of the English version have been published in London. (Translator)
Some additional attributes of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) have also been included in the descriptions found in the Torah and the Injil, among them is his attribute of bidding good to people and preventing them from evil. اَلامربالمعروف وَ نَہِی عنِ المُنکَر . The Arabic term Ma` ruf literally signifies something recognized, acknowledged or known, while the term: مُنکَر ‘munkar’ signifies strange, or unrecognized. That is, Ma` ruf refers to the acts which are known and recognized in Islam while Munkar refers to the acts which are not recognized or known. This has indi¬cated that the act which was recognized by, or known to, the people of the first century of Islam shall only be considered as good-deed otherwise it shall be termed as ‘munkar’ or rejected. This, in turn, makes us understand that any act, not approved by the Companions and their disciples (صَحابہ وتابعین) cannot be considered as good-deed with no regard to how positive or agreeable it looks. The authentic Traditions have, therefore, termed the acts not acknowledged or approved by the Companions and their disciples as innovated acts (مُحَدِثَاتُ الاُمُور) or ‘bid` ah’ (innovation). In the next phrase of the verse the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) has been described as having the attribute of inviting people to good and preventing them from evil. The verse (7:157) said: يَأْمُرُهُم بِالْمَعْرُوفِ وَيَنْهَاهُمْ عَنِ الْمُنكَرِ “Who bids them the Fair and forbids the Unfair.”
This attribute has been, a common attribute of all the Prophets (علیہم السلام) ، as it had to be, because the very purpose of their being ordained by Allah is to guide people to good and prevent them from evil. There must be some reason in describing this attribute as a distinct feature of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) . A little reflection on his effective way of preaching and speaking to people according to their state of mind is enough to show the distinction. The Arab bedouins who knew nothing except grazing the camels and goats were spoken to in such a simple and candid terms that made them understand effortlessly even complex and speculative ideas. He used to receive delegates from the world-powers of the time like Rome and Persia and from other tribes. They were greatly impressed by his ingenuous approach in making his point easily intelligible to them. His god-gifted capability of making impact on others by his speech was miraculously unusual and has been acknowledged even by his enemies. Another attribute described in the Torah was that through the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) ، Allah shall make the blind eyes see and dumb ears hear, and the sealed hearts open. This may also have a reference to his effective method of preaching and making things understood easily.
The verse under discussion has described second attribute that he shall permit his people to eat pure things and shall prohibit impure things. This implies that many things which, in fact were pure and good, and had been forbidden for the Israelites as a punishment shall be permitted by the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) for his people. For example, the fat of permissible animals was forbidden for the Israelites as a punishment against their sinful deeds.
For example, the fat of the properly slaughtered animal which was forbidden for them was made permissible by the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) for the Muslims. The example of impure things includes blood, dead animals, liquor and all the prohibited animals. This also includes impermissible means of income like gambling, interest and bribes etc. (A1-Sirai al-Munir) Some scholars have included immorality and ill manners also in impure things.
Next the verse speaks of the third attribute of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) saying وَ یَضَعُ عَنھُم اِصرَھُم وَ الاَغلَال الَّتِی عَلَیھِم “ And relieves them of their burden and of the shackles that were upon them.
The Arabic word ‘Isr’ اِصرَ signifies heavy burden enough to stop movement, and the word ‘Aghlal’ is a plural of ‘ghull’ (غل) signifying inal handcuffs or shackle which binds the hands of a criminal with his neck. Both the words refer to punishment and were not, in themselves, a religious requirement. For example, the Israelites were essentially required to cut away the piece of cloth having impurity on it. They were not allowed simply to wash it away. Similarly the spoils of war acquired during jihad with infidels was not permissible for them. Reportedly, a heavenly fire used to come and burn it up. They were not allowed hunting on Sabbath (Saturday). The human organs involved in committing sin were required to be cut off. The murderer had to be essentially killed in retaliation with no regard to the nature of murder: deliberate or homicide by mistake. They had no legal concession of paying ransom.
The arduous injunctions described above have been regarded to in this verse by the words burden and shackles. It is said that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) shall abrogate such injunctions and replace them with easily practicable commandments. The Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) has referred to this aspect of Islamic Shari’ah in a Hadith saying ‘that he is leaving among them an easy and practicable law which is neither cumbersome nor susceptible to going astray’. In another tradition he said: اَلدِّینُ یُسرُ (Islam) is easy”.
Subsequent to the description of some attributes of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) the verse has said:
فَالَّذِينَ آمَنُوا بِهِ وَعَزَّرُوهُ وَنَصَرُوهُ وَاتَّبَعُوا النُّورَ الَّذِي أُنزِلَ مَعَهُ ۙ أُولَـٰئِكَ هُمُ الْمُفْلِحُونَ
“So, those who believe in him, and hold him in reverence, and help him, and follow the light sent down with him, those are the ones who are successful.”
This verse has stipulated the achievement of success with four conditions namely, belief in the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) ، having reverence for him, readily coming to his help and following the commandments of the Holy Qur’an.
The word used for reverence in this verse is عَزَّرُوهُ which is derived from ‘Ta` zir’. Lexically it means ‘to stop someone, with love and affec¬tion, from doing something, and to guard him. Sayyidna ` Abdullah bin ` Abbas (رض) has interpreted it as ‘reverence. Al-mubarrad has commented that it denotes the highest degree of reverence. The impli¬cation of the verse is that the achievement of everlasting success is the destiny of those who, in addition to having love and respect for him, are always ready to help him against his enemies. In the life of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) helping him was directly related to his person; but after his departure helping his message or supporting the Islamic Shari’ah is analogous to helping the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) .
The Holy Qur’an has been referred to with the word ‘light’. Since light does not require an external proof for its existence, similarly the Qur’an, in itself, is a clear proof of its being divine and the word of Allah, since the highest degree of wisdom and eloquence that it contains is as evident as the sunlight which requires no proof for its existence. Specially so when it was spoken by an unlettered man. Similar to light which is not only bright in itself, but has the charac¬teristics of making the darks bright as well, the Holy Qur’an has enlightened the mankind which was lost in darkness.
The significance of the Sunnah:
The verse under discussion started with the wads, “Those who follow the Messenger, the unlettered Prophet,” and has ended on the phrase. “and follow the light sent down with him”. The first phrase enjoins the obedience of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) while the second phrase bids to the obedience to the Qur’anic injunctions. This has indicated that eternal salvation is dependent on the obedience of both, the Qur’an and the Sunnah, and that the obedience of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) can be achieved only by following the way of his life – the Sunnah.
Love and respect of the Prophet is essential
The phrase عَزَّرُوهُ وَنَصَرُوهُ “And hold him in reverence and help him.” has been placed between the above two sentences, implying that the obedience required for the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) is not like the obedience one has to show to the high ranking official out of some necessity. This has to be the obedience in true sense of the word which is a product of love and respect. That is to say, one should bear as much love and reverence for him as to make this obedience dearest to him. People have varied relations with their Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) . He is a Prophet, a master, a commander and an object of great love at the same time. Besides, the Prophet being superior to all his people in respect of knowledge, wisdom, and social and moral behaviour demands, deep respect or veneration on the part of his people.
Our Messenger (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) has perfection in each of the above aspects making it essential for the Muslims to fulfill the demands of all his positions. He should be believed as a prophet, obeyed as a commander, venerated as a man of great knowledge and wisdom and deeply loved and cherished for being very kind to them.
The obedience of the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) has to be a religious requirement for the Muslims because the very purpose of his being sent down remains unfulfilled without it. In the case of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) Allah Almighty has enjoined additional obligations upon the Muslims. In another verse of the Holy Qur’an we find the phrase: عَزَّرُوهُ وَنَصَرُوهُ “So that you assist him and honour him.” (48:9) Yet in another verse people have been warned that they should not raise their voices above the voice of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) . The verse said:
يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا لَا تَرْفَعُوا أَصْوَاتَكُمْ فَوْقَ صَوْتِ النَّبِيِّ
“0 Believers! do not raise your voices above the voice of the Prophet.” (49:2)
In another verse the Muslims have been advised in these words:
يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا لَا تُقَدِّمُوا بَيْنَ يَدَيِ اللَّـهِ وَرَسُولِ
“0 believers, do not go ahead in the presence of Allah and His Messenger. (49:1)
The verse has warned the Muslims that they should not start their speech before the speech of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) in his presence. The Companion Sahl ibn ` Abdullah (رض) ، has taken it to imply that people should not start talking before the Prophet of Allah speaks, and should remain silent when he talks. Another verse of the Holy Qur’an has prohibited the Muslims from calling the Messenger of Allah in a manner they call each other. It said:
لَّا تَجْعَلُوا دُعَاءَ الرَّسُولِ بَيْنَكُمْ كَدُعَاءِ بَعْضِكُم بَعْضًا
“Do not make the calling of the Messenger, among yourself, like the calling of one another.” (24:63)
The Holy Qur’an warned the Muslims that all their good deeds shall go waste if they show lack of respect to him.
The companions, who availed the company of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) most of their time, maintained the respect of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) according to Qur’anic instructions. It has been reported that Sayyidna Abu Bakr (رض) ، after the revelation of the above verse, used to speak with the Messenger of Allah as stealthily as saying some secret to him. Same was the case with Sayyidna ` Umar al-Faruq (رض) .
The companion ` Amr ibn ` As (رض) has said:
“None on earth is as dear to me as was the Messenger of Allah but at the same time I was unable to cast my looks at him. If I am ever asked to describe him, I find it difficult since I have never seen him enough as to give out his description.”
Tirmidhi has reported Sayyidna Anas (رض) saying that whenever the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) came in the assembly of the companions, people kept their eyes down with respect. Only Sayyidna Abu Bakr and Sayyidna ` Umar (رض) raised their eyes and used to smile at them.
` Urwah ibn Masud was once sent to Madinah for spying on the Muslims. On his return to Makkah he reported, “I have seen the courts of great kings like the king of Rome and Persia and I have met King Negus but the respect and veneration I saw in the hearts of the Muslims for their prophet was unique, never seen anywhere in the world. I think you shall never succeed against them.”
The Companion Mughirah ibn Shu’bah (رض) has reported in a Tradition that the companions of the Prophet of Allah deemed it against his respect to call him from outside his house. They knocked at his door with their finger nails to avoid making a loud sound. Even after his departure the companions did not only avoid talking loudly in his mosque, they also avoided raising their voice while giving sermons in the mosque. A number of people could not help themselves from weeping when someone made a mention of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) .
This exemplary love and respect of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) let them share a considerable part of prophetic perfection and enjoy the highest religious status next to the prophets.
قُلْ يٰٓاَيُّھَا النَّاسُ اِنِّىْ رَسُوْلُ اللّٰهِ اِلَيْكُمْ جَمِيْعَۨا الَّذِيْ لَهٗ مُلْكُ السَّمٰوٰتِ وَالْاَرْضِ
This verse speaks of one of the basic aspects of the prophethood which is among the fundamental tenets of Islam. That is, the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) has been sent as His Messenger to the entire mankind and to the jinn (genies) coming into being upto the day of judgment.
This verse has commanded the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) to make general declaration that he has been sent to all the people of the world, and that his prophethood was not limited to a particular people and place as was the case with the early prophets who came to a particular people and place and for a limited period of time.
He is the last of all Prophets (علیہم السلام)
The fact that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) has been sent down at the end of all prophets is an obvious reason behind the Islamic belief of Finality of prophethood. His being the last of all prophets and coming down for the guidance of all people of all future times leaves no room for any other Prophet. The same fact provides with an explanation to a characteristic quality of the Muslim Ummah. According to a Tradition of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) ، there shall always be a group among the Muslims who will keep defying the anti-Islamic forces and putting resistance in the way of sacrilegious thought and practice. It will also correct false interpretations of the Qur’an and the Sunnah. This group shall be favoured by Allah with His special help and thereby will, ulti¬mately, win over the opposite forces. It is because these people are considered to be the real inheritors of the prophetic mission, faithfully discharging their duty after the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) .
Imam al-Razi, under the comments of the Qur’anic commandment كُونُوا مَعَ الصَّادِقِي (Be in the company of the truthful) has remarked that this phrase has provided an assurance that a group of the truthful shall always be available for people, otherwise the command of seeking their company made no sense. Imam Razi has inferred the principle of consensus (اِجمَاع) from this phrase. That is, the presence of the truthful people was enough to preclude the agreement of the Muslim Ummah on error.
Ibn Kathir has inferred from this verse it has provided a proof that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) was the seal of and for prophets (علیہم السلام) because his message was for all the people of the world the ages to come. According to some authentic Traditions, the Prophet ‘Isa (عليه السلام) will also follow the Law of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) after his descent from heavens in the last age. Apart from this verse there are many other verses which speak in unmistakable terms of the Finality of Prophethood. For example the Holy Qur’an said:
وَأُوحِيَ إِلَيَّ هَـٰذَا الْقُرْآنُ لِأُنذِرَكُم بِهِ وَمَن بَلَغَ
“And this Qur’an has been revealed to me that I may warn you thereby, and whomsoever it may reach.” (6:19)
This, evidently, enjoins the following of the Holy Qur’an upon all the people coming after the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) and to acquire knowledge of the Qur’an.
Some distinctions of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم)
Ibn Kathir has cited the Musnad of lmam Ahmad reporting by authentic narrators that at the occasion of the battle of Tabuk, the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) was engaged in the late night prayer (Tahajjud). The companions gathered around him in a circle to save him from any possible attack by the enemy. After completing the prayer the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said, “This night I have been awarded with five distinctions, not awarded to any prophet before. Firstly, my prophethood has been extended to all mankind while the message of the prophets prior to me was limited to their particular.
Secondly, my presence creates a feeling of dread in the hearts of my enemy which overtakes him from a distance of one month’s travel. Thirdly, the spoils taken from the enemy have been made permissible for my people, while it was prohibited for the early people. Fourthly, Allah has made the whole earth a place for our prayers like a mosque, and made it a purifier (in tayammum) for my people, while the prayers of the early people was limited to their churches or synagogues. They were not permitted to pray at home or out in the land. Besides, in the absence of water my people allowed to make use of soil, in place of water for tayammum (a substitute of ablution). The early people were not given this concession.” Then, he said, emphatically that the fifth distinction was, above all, the most promising and helpful. He explained, “Every prophet was asked by Allah to make one particular supplication which was to be essentially acceded to, and every prophet made that invocation for their particular aim. Allah asked me too to make such invocation. I preferred to reserve my invocation until the Day of Judgment which will be of great use to you and to those who follow and bear witness that there is no god but Allah.”
Another Tradition reported by Imam Ahmad on the authority of the Companion Abu Musa al-Ash’ari (رض) has contained that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said, “Any one hearing the news of my appearance, be he a Muslim, Christian or Jew must believe in me, otherwise he will be placed in Hell.”
Sahih al-Bukhari has reported the following incident with regard to this verse: Sayyidna Abu Bakr and Sayyidna ` Umar (رض) once had severe disagreement on a matter. Sayyidna ` Umar (رض) left the place to express his dissent. Sayyidna Abu Bakr (رض) followed him in order to bring him round. Sayyidna ` Umar (رض) being angry with him entered his house and locked the door upon him. Sayyidna Abu Bakr (رض) having no choice went to the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) and related the whole story to him. Later, Sayyidna ` Umar (رض) had a feeling of regret for misbehaving Sayyidna Abu Bakr (رض) ، he too went to the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) and informed him of the incident. The Companion Abu al-Darda’ (رض) عنہ has reported that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) was annoyed at it. Seeing that Sayyidna ` Umar (رض) was going to be admonished for it, Sayyidna Abu Bakr (رض) said to the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) ، “My fault was greater”. At this point the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said, “Can you people not leave one of my companions alone and save him from the annoyance on your part? Do you people not know when I declared by the will of Allah يَا أَيُّهَا النَّاسُ إِنِّي رَسُولُ اللَّـهِ إِلَيْكُمْ جَمِيعًا “0 people, I am a messenger of Allah sent to you all,” you all belied me? It was Abu Bakr alone who testified to my Prophethood.”
In short, this verse is a clear evidence proving that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) has been sent to the whole mankind. His message is for all generations and for all times to come and for all places. No one can achieve salvation without believing in him, even if he is faithfully and devotedly practicing some other faith or book.
The next sentence of the verse reminds people that he has been sent from the One to Whom the Kingdom of the heavens and the earth belongs and Who gives life to every living creature and brings death to it. That is, He alone is the Lord of the Universe. The last sentence of the verse said:
آمِنُوا بِاللَّـهِ وَرَسُولِهِ النَّبِيِّ الْأُمِّيِّ الَّذِي يُؤْمِنُ بِاللَّـهِ وَكَلِمَاتِهِ وَاتَّبِعُوهُ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَهْتَدُونَ
“So, believe in Allah and His Messenger, the Ummi (unlettered) prophet who believes in Allah and in his words, and follow him so that you may get the right path.”
After establishing the fact that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) was sent for all the people of the world and for all times to come, and that there is no other choice for anyone but to follow his law – the Islam, the verse enjoins the belief in Allah and in His Messenger, who is Ummi, the unlettered. He, himself believes in Allah and in His words. The people should, therefore, follow him to keep themselves on the right path.
The ‘words’ کلمات refer to the word of Allah revealed to his prophets like the Torah, Evangel (the book revealed to the Prophet ‘Isa (عليه السلام) (Jesus) ) and the Qur’an. It may be noted that the command of believing in him is followed by another command of following him. This has indicated that sheer belief or making the verbal utterances of belief, is not enough for guidance or salvation. Practicing Islamic Shari’ah is essen¬tially required for one’s salvation in the Hereafter.
The great saint and spiritual leader Sheikh Junaid of Baghdad has remarked that all the paths leading to Allah are closed except the path specifically defined by the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) .
وَمِنْ قَوْمِ مُوْسٰٓي اُمَّةٌ يَّهْدُوْنَ بِالْحَقِّ وَبِهٖ يَعْدِلُوْنَ
The Truthful among the Israelites
The verse 159 said: وَمِن قَوْمِ مُوسَىٰ أُمَّةٌ يَهْدُونَ بِالْحَقِّ وَبِهِ يَعْدِلُونَ ﴿١٥٩﴾ ‘”Among the commu¬nity of Musa there are people who guide to the truth, and do justice thereby.” That is, there is a group among the Israelites who follows the truth and decides their controversies according to the dictates of the Truth – Islam. Which are the people referred to in this verse as following the truth among the Israelites? This refers to the people who faithfully followed the commandments of the Torah and the Injil at the time they were revealed, and those who readily accepted the faith of Islam after the appearance of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) according to the predictions contained in the Torah and the Injil. The Holy Qur’an has referred to this group in a number of verses in commendable terms. There is a verse which said: مِّنْ أَهْلِ الْكِتَابِ أُمَّةٌ قَائِمَةٌ يَتْلُونَ آيَاتِ اللَّـهِ آنَاءَ اللَّيْلِ وَهُمْ يَسْجُدُونَ “Among the people of the Book there are those who are steadfast, they recite the verses of Allah in the night hours, and they prostrate.” (3:113)
الَّذِينَ آتَيْنَاهُمُ الْكِتَابَ مِن قَبْلِهِ هُم بِهِ يُؤْمِنُونَ ﴿52﴾
“Those to whom We gave the book before this, they do believe in this (Qura’n) “. (28:52)
Under the comments on this verse we find a narrative in the commentaries of Ibn Jarir and Ibn Kathir رحمۃ اللہ علیہما . A group of Israelites who greatly despised the corrupt practices of the Israelites had prayed Allah for having a separate land away from the other tribes so that they might practice according to the original faith preached by the Prophet Musa (عليه السلام) ، Allah carried them to a land somewhere in the Far East where they faithfully practiced their faith.
Another favour of Allah bestowed upon them was that in the time of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) they were granted an opportunity to embrace Islam directly on the hands of the Holy Prophet. In the night of Ascension (شَبِ مِعرَاج ) the Archangel Jibra’il (عليه السلام) (Gabriel) took the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) to these people on the way to heavens. They accepted the faith and the Holy Prophet صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم taught them some Surahs (chapters) of the Holy Qur’an.
The Prophet of Allah asked them if they had some means of weighing and measuring and what other means of subsistence did they have? They answered that their usual practice was that they cultivated the land and collected the whole produce together in a heap. The people came and took from it according to their need. They said, “We do not, therefore, need any weights and measures.” The Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) asked them if any one of them ever told lies. They said that no one among them ever told lies because it was a usual practice that any person speaking a lie was burnt up by a heavenly fire. He asked them as to why all their houses were of the same type? They answered, that it was to avoid the possibility of showing off one’s affluence as compared to others. He asked them why they had built up their graves in front of their houses? They said that this made them remember their death all the times. After the Holy Prophet returned from heavens to Makkah, this verse was revealed to him. Al-Qurtubi, under the comments of this verse has narrated this event along with other suggestions and has remarked that this narrative was not authentic. Ibn Kathir, however, has termed it as an unusual event but did not reject it.
In short, this verse makes us understand that there has always been a group among the Israelites who followed the Truth. Be they the people described above or the ones who embraced Islam after the appearance of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) .
وَقَطَّعْنٰهُمْ فِي الْاَرْضِ اُمَمًا ۚمِنْهُمُ الصّٰلِحُوْنَ وَمِنْهُمْ دُوْنَ ذٰلِكَ
The second punishment has been mentioned in verse 168. That is, Jewish populace has been cut into fragments scattered in all the parts of the world they could not integrate themselves into a solid nation. The phrase وَقَطَّعْنَاهُمْ فِي الْأَرْضِ أُمَمًا “And we divided them on the earth as separate communities”. has refered to this fact. The Arabic word قَطَّعْنَا signifies breaking into pieces. While the word اُمَم is plural of Ummah, which means ‘a group’, ‘a party’. The verse means that Allah has divided them into fragments making them scattered on the earth.
This indicates that being integrated in a whole, or having an entity as a nation is a blessing of Allah while getting disorganized into parts separated from each other is a punishment from Him. The Muslims have always enjoyed the blessing of having their own entity, and being recognized as an organized people in the world. Starting right from Madinah in the time of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) up to this day they have their own independent rule in various parts of the earth. The presence of Islamic countries from the Far East to the West is an obvious proof of this fact.
Their present state in Palestine should not cause any doubt as they have to come together in a place in the last age according to the prophecies made by the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) . He informed us in authentic Traditions that Prophet ` Isa (عليه السلام) shall come down to the earth from heavens before the end of the world, and all the Christians shall embrace Islam. He shall fight a war against the Jews and put them to death. The culprits of Allah are not summoned through police, or other agencies; they are driven to their place of death by the causes created by the will of Allah.
The Prophet ` Isa (عليه السلام) (Jesus) is to descend from heavens in the land of Syria. He shall fight war with the Jews. The Prophet Isa (عليه السلام) has been saved the trouble of seeking the Jews in different parts of the world by causing them to gather in Palestine. As to their present political power and sovereignty in the State of Israel, it is a delusion which beguiles only those who are not conversant with the world politics. The so called ‘State of Israel’ is, in fact, a common camp ground of the big powers like America, Russia, and England. It depends upon the aid of its masters for its existence. It has to serve the aims and objectives of its Masters. They are still living in real servitude, and are deprived of their free rule in true sense of the word.
The Holy Qur’an has informed us of their disgrace and distress up to the end of time in these words:
وَإِذْ تَأَذَّنَ رَبُّكَ لَيَبْعَثَنَّ عَلَيْهِمْ إِلَىٰ يَوْمِ الْقِيَامَةِ مَن يَسُومُهُمْ سُوءَ الْعَذَابِ ۗ إِنَّ رَبَّكَ لَسَرِيعُ الْعِقَابِ
“And when your Lord declared that he would surely keep sending till the Day of Doom, those who inflict upon them an evil punishment.”
History has recorded that they have been continually persecuted by one people or another right from the time of the Prophet Sulayman (عليه السلام) to the present age. Their imprisonment by Nebuchadnezzar and persecution at the hands of subsequent kings, then their defeat and ignominious fate at the hands of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) and his Caliph ` Umar al-Faruq (رض) 1, are obvious example of this fact.
- The recent persecution of the Jews at the hands of Hitler in the second world war is a fresh example of this Qur’anic declaration. (Translator)
The second phrase of this verse is this:
مِّنْهُمُ الصَّالِحُونَ وَمِنْهُمْ دُونَ ذَٰلِكَ
“Some of them are righteous, and some of them are other-wise”.
The righteous people among them are those who followed the commandments of the Torah faithfully and did not try to distort them as others did. The people termed as ‘otherwise’ include infidels and those who obstinately disobeyed their prophets and even killed them. The terms ‘righteous’ and ‘otherwise’ may also refer to the people who believed in the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) and followed the Qur’anic guidance after it’s revelation. Opposed to them are those believing in the Torah as the word of Allah, disobeyed it or distorted its command¬ment and thus sold out their eternal salvation for petty gains of this world. The last phrase of this verse has said:
وَبَلَوْنَاهُم بِالْحَسَنَاتِ وَالسَّيِّئَاتِ لَعَلَّهُمْ يَرْجِعُونَ
“And we tested them with good happenings and bad happen¬ings so that they might return.”
The “good happenings” refer to their state of prosperity, comfort and ease while ‘bad happenings’ has reference either to their various persecutions and calamities faced by them throughout their history, or it may have referred to some period of famine coming upon them as punishment. Both the methods of testing their obedience were used in their case. Prosperity and wealth were given to them to see if they show their gratefulness to their Lord. When they were a failure in this test, they were made to undergo many punishments already discussed in the foregoing verses.
Their perversion of thought and practice had gone to such extent that in the time of prosperity they said:
إِنَّ اللَّـهَ فَقِيرٌ وَنَحْنُ أَغْنِيَاءُ
“Allah is poor and we are rich.” (3:181)
while in times of their destitution they said: يَدُ اللَّـهِ مَغْلُولَةٌ “Allah’s hand is shackled.” (5:64) Another implication of the verse is that prosperity or poverty, happiness or suffering are sent as a test to mankind in order to judge the faith and love of the created for the Creator. Both, pros¬perity and suffering should be of no real concern to the men of under-standing, as they are temporary and have to end.
It is, therefore, not wise to show arrogance for one’s prosperity or being dejected for one’s impoverishment. A Persian poet said:
نہ شادی داد سامانے نہ غم آورد نقصانے
بہ پیش ھمت ماھرچہ آمد بود مہمانے
“Neither happiness awarded us with real benefit nor did
sorrow make us weep. Both came as guests to our resolute spirit.”
فَخَلَفَ مِنْۢ بَعْدِهِمْ خَلْفٌ وَّرِثُوا الْكِتٰبَ يَاْخُذُوْنَ عَرَضَ هٰذَا الْاَدْنٰى وَيَقُوْلُوْنَ سَيُغْفَرُ لَنَا ۚ
The verse 169 has said:
فَخَلَفَ مِن بَعْدِهِمْ خَلْفٌ وَرِثُوا الْكِتَابَ يَأْخُذُونَ عَرَضَ هَـٰذَا الْأَدْنَىٰ وَيَقُولُونَ سَيُغْفَرُ لَنَا وَإِن يَأْتِهِمْ عَرَضٌ مِّثْلُهُ يَأْخُذُوهُ
“Then, after them came a generation, who inherited the Book, taking to the mundane stuff of this world and saying: ‘We shall be forgiven.’ And if there comes to them similar stuff, they would take to it (again).
The Arabic word خَلْفٌ is a past tense of خِلَافَہ signifying a deputy or a person trusted with one’s work in one’s absence.
The second word used here is خَلْفُ with the merged sound of the second letter ل Lam, generally denoting a deputy who is marked with wickedness, as opposed to the good practices of his elders. The word وَرِثُوا is a derivative of ورَاثَۃ that is, inheritance. The next word is عَرَض meaning something bought with money. Sometimes, it is used just for something possessed. The use of this word for money indicates that anything owned in this world is temporary, because this word, as an antonym of ‘Jauhar’ (substance), is used for an object which requires something else to show its existence like colour which requires another thing to show itself. The word اَدنی ‘has been derived from دُنوُ which denotes nearness or lack of distance. The word دُنیا is a feminine gender of this word. The word اَدنی may also be taken to be a derivative of دَنَاَءۃ which signifies disgrace. In this case the word shall refer to something disgraced.
The verse implies that there were two groups of people among the early Jews, the righteous and the wrong-doers. The people coming in later generations who inherited the Torah, however, acted opposite to their elders and made the Book an object of trading or a means of their earning. They used to manipulate and distort the text of the Torah for some money offered to them for this purpose. Moreover, “they said: وَيَقُولُونَ سَيُغْفَرُ لَنَا “We shall be forgiven”. In spite of committing as great a sin as distorting the text of the Book of Allah, they claimed their forgive¬ness by Allah. They are warned of this error in the very next sentence. saying: وَإِن يَأْتِهِمْ عَرَضٌ مِّثْلُهُ يَأْخُذُوهُ ‘If there comes to them similar stuff they would take to it (again).” That is to say, they are in such a state of perversion that in case they are offered money for changing another text, they shall readily accept it. The verse has implied that forgive¬ness of Allah is always there to those who are mindful of their error and turn to their Lord in repentance showing their remorse over what they have done, and making firm promise of not repeating the same mistake again. Being persistent in their sinful acts and claiming their forgiveness is sheer self deception. The next part of the verse puts a question to them, whether they were not made to enter a covenant with Allah that they shall never say anything but truth about Allah. Yes, they read this pledge in their Book. This is nothing but their impudence and obstinacy that stops them from realizing the truth of the Hereafter which is exclusively the fate of those who fear Allah.
وَالَّذِيْنَ يُمَسِّكُوْنَ بِالْكِتٰبِ وَاَقَامُوا الصَّلٰوةَ ۭاِنَّا لَا نُضِيْعُ اَجْرَ الْمُصْلِحِيْنَ
The preceding verse (169) contained a mention of a covenant made with the religious leaders of the Israelites in particular, that they shall not make any changes in the Torah and shall not ascribe to Allah anything but the truth. It has already been mentioned that they violated this pledge and distorted the contents of the Torah for petty amounts of money. This verse is an extension of the same theme. It says that there are some among their religious leaders who are truth-fully following the commands of the Torah and are firmly adhering to its guidance. They established the Salah as was required. The verse has provided with an assurance to such people that they shall not be deprived of their reward. That is, those who have been true to their faith and fulfilled its demands are righteous people among them.
There are some points of discussion related to this verse. The term ‘Book’ most probably refers to the Torah. Another possibility is that it refers to all the heavenly books of Allah like Torah, Injil and the Qur’an. Another point to be noted is that merely keeping the book of Allah and showing respect to it without following its’ commandments does not fulfill the very object of its revelation. It is why the verse has used the word يُمَسِّكُونَ “Hold fast”, in place of يَأْخُذُونَ or یَقرَؤنَ “those who take it or read it. Holding fast the Book requires to follow all it’s injunctions and commands.
The next thing we note in this verse is that out of a large number of doctrines of the Torah the verse has made mention of “establishing ‘Salah’ only. This is because the Salah is the most significant and purposeful act among the precepts enjoined by Allah. This is, in fact, the most basic and quintessential way of expressing one’s faith in, and obedience to, Allah. Offering the Salah regularly makes one capable of being regular in other worships more willingly and with more ease. The Holy Prophet صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم has termed the Salah as being the pillar of Islam. The whole edifice of Islam rests on it. Whoever has erected it properly has built the whole structure of his faith on a stronghold. Any one not regular in Salah, is of no worth to Allah, even if he is seen reciting His name all the times and has unusual visions and does extraordinary acts.
وَاِذْ اَخَذَ رَبُّكَ مِنْۢ بَنِيْٓ اٰدَمَ مِنْ ظُهُوْرِهِمْ ذُرِّيَّتَهُمْ وَاَشْهَدَهُمْ عَلٰٓي اَنْفُسِهِمْ
The covenant of Alust: عہد الست
These two verses describe the event of the great heavenly covenant which the Creator, Allah, made with all His created being even before they took the form of their existence. This covenant is known as the covenant of Alust (أَلَسْتُ ).
Allah is the creator of all the worlds, the heavens, the earth and whatever exists between them. His infinite wisdom and all-encompassing knowledge has designed and manufactured this universe with as much perfection as leaves no room for any doubt or question. He has created everything with a wise set of rules and regu¬lations. Following these laws ensures people of eternal success and everlasting peace and comfort while deviation from these principles makes one liable to punishments prescribed by Allah.
We may also note that His all-encompassing knowledge and infi¬nite wisdom was enough to decide the fate of all the created beings without assigning His angels to watch over and keep the record of the deeds of His servants, and without weighing their deeds in the Balance on the Day of Judgment. It is because He is All-Aware of the deeds, even of the hidden thoughts and intentions of His servants without the remotest possibility of making wrong judgment.
His Grace and perfect Justice, however, chose that none should be punished without providing him with documentary evidences of his sinful acts, in a way, that sinner himself finds no choice but to readily acknowledge his sinful deeds.
He appointed some of His angels to record each and every act done by an individual. The Holy Qur’an said:
مَّا يَلْفِظُ مِن قَوْلٍ إِلَّا لَدَيْهِ رَقِيبٌ عَتِيدٌ ﴿18﴾
“He utters not a word but there is by him a vigilant watcher1.” (50:18)
- According to Sayyidna Ibn ` Abbas , LI everything good or bad about a mortal is recorded by his guardian angels” (A study of al-Qur’an al-Karim vol. 4 p. 969, by La’l Muhammad Chawla) )Translator)
In another verse the Holy Qur’an said: وَكُلُّ صَغِيرٍ وَكَبِيرٍ مُّسْتَطَرٌ ﴿٥٣﴾ And everything small and great is written down.” (54:53) Then, on the Day of Judgment the Balance shall be set to weigh the good and bad deeds of all people. Those whose good deeds weigh heavy shall be rewarded with salvation while those whose bad deeds weigh heavier shall be punished.
Moreover, when Allah, the Best of All Judges shall hold His court on the Day of Judgment, He shall call for witnesses on the deeds of every individual. Certain wrongful people shall falsify certain witnesses. Allah shall ask his physical organs to bear witness to his deeds. They shall be given power to speak and bear witness against him. The places where the deeds were done shall also come to witness against him until he shall find no way to belie the witnesses and finally will make confession of his evil deeds. The Holy Qur’an referred to it in these words:
فَاعْتَرَفُوا بِذَنبِهِمْ فَسُحْقًا لِّأَصْحَابِ السَّعِيرِ ﴿11﴾
“So, they will confess their sins, but far removed (from Allah’s Mercy) are the companions of the blazing fire.” (67:11)
We also note that Allah, who is the most kind and loving did not leave His servants at the mercy of law and regulations only. He, out of His kindness, provided His servants with complete guidance through His prophets and the Books, in order to save them from eternal punishment.
Like the kind parents who make it essential for their children to go to school every morning also make sure that their children get all their requirements ready before time to facilitate their following the law of school-going with all possible ease. Allah, who is free from all similarities is more loving and kind to His servants than are the parents to their children. He did not only formulate the laws but made them a source of real guidance. Along with the commandments He also taught how people can carry out His commandments with ease and readiness.
Apart from sending His messengers and divine books to His servants He appointed a large number of His angels to help and guide people to the right path. Besides, He created .clear signs of His Power and wisdom all around so that people may use their own observation and understanding to distinguish right from wrong, and to remember their Creator. He repeatedly invited people to make use of their obser¬vation and understanding when seeing His signs scattered all around them. He said, in the Holy Qur’an :
وَفِي الْأَرْضِ آيَاتٌ لِّلْمُوقِنِينَ ﴿20﴾ وَفِي أَنفُسِكُمْ ۚ أَفَلَا تُبْصِرُونَ ﴿21﴾
“And on the earth are signs for those who have firm faith, and also in your own selves. Do you not see then?” 1 (51:20-21)
- This verse has referred to two kinds of signs; external and internal. The external signs are profusely available all around us; the heavens the earth, the oceans, mountains, plants and trees, fruits of different colour and taste; they provide us with unmistakable guidance to our Lord. The internal signs include the process of our reproduction, our physique, our thoughts, intentions emotions and sentiments of happiness and sorrow. A little reflection on these signs positively leads us to the Creator and makes us to express our gratefulness to Him. (Translator)
Another arrangement made by Allah to make people act right¬eously was to make them enter into covenants with Him through His Prophets (علیہم السلام) . The Holy Qur’an has references to a number of such cove¬nants made with various people in varied circumstances. The Prophets (علیہم السلام) were made to promise that they shall essentially convey Allah’s message to their people without any regard to difficulties and reproach from them. This pious group of prophets (علیہم السلام) did convey Allah’s message as faithfully as was possible and sacrificed all that they had in this way.
Similarly the people of every prophet were made to promise to obey their prophet, and in some special cases, to spend all their energy in carrying out particular commands. Some people fulfilled their promise while some others did not.
Among such covenants the most significant one is the covenant which all the prophets were made to enter regarding the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) that all the prophets shall follow the last of all prophets and assist him when they find some opportunity to do so. The Holy Qur’an has mentioned this covenant in the following verse:
وَإِذْ أَخَذَ اللَّـهُ مِيثَاقَ النَّبِيِّينَ لَمَا آتَيْتُكُم مِّن كِتَابٍ وَحِكْمَةٍ ثُمَّ جَاءَكُمْ رَسُولٌ مُّصَدِّقٌ لِّمَا مَعَكُمْ لَتُؤْمِنُنَّ بِهِ وَلَتَنصُرُنَّهُ
“And when Allah made the prophets take pledge: (saying) If I give you a book and wisdom, then comes to you a messenger verifying what is with you, you shall have to believe in him and you shall have to support him1.” (3:81)
- By implication this pledge taken by all the prophets makes it binding on the followers of all the prophets to believe in the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) and to follow him and support him in achieving his objectives. It makes binding upon them to follow the law given by the last of all Prophets. (Translator)
The Significance of Bay’ah بَیعَت Swearing Allegiance)
The traditional way of taking pledge (bay’ah: discipleship) from the devoted followers, is in fact, in pursuance of this practice of Allah. The Prophets (علیہم السلام) ، their companions and spiritual leaders have been taking the pledge of allegiance from their followers. The incident of اَلرِضوَان بَیعَت ‘Bay’ah al-Rizwan’ has been mentioned in the Holy Qur’an. It said:
لَّقَدْ رَضِيَ اللَّـهُ عَنِ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ إِذْ يُبَايِعُونَكَ تَحْتَ الشَّجَرَةِ
“Allah was certainly well pleased with the believers when they swore fidelity to you (0 Prophet) under the tree.” (48:18)
The Holy Prophet صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم took such pledge of allegiance from his companions on many occasions. ‘Bay’ah al-‘Aqabah’ is a famous pre-migration covenant made with the Ansars of Madinah. The custo¬mary way of Sufis to take pledge from their followers, is a covenant taken for practising the commandments of Allah regularly and strengthening their belief in Allah by frequent remembrance of their Lord. The way of swearing fealty to someone has many advantages and draws ‘Barakah’ from Allah.
After swearing fealty to some Sheikh (Spiritual Master), a follower feels himself more willing and inclined to practise the religious obliga¬tions, and is more conscious in seeking the pleasure of Allah.
The above description of Bay’ah also clears away a misconception common among the men of little knowledge that by putting one’s hand in the hands of some Sheikh or spiritual leader is enough for one’s salvation in the Hereafter. This is absolutely an erroneous notion as swearing allegiance is a pledge taken for following practical guidance according to the instructions given by the Sheikh. Therefore, only placing one’s hands into the hands of a Sheikh is simply of no use. Rather, it is a deviation from the pledge and may incur the wrath of Allah.
The verse (172) speaking of the covenant of Eternity عہداَلَست in the preceding pages has used the word ذُرِّیِّۃ for the children of Adam. According to Imam Raghib al-Isfahani the word ذُرِّیِّۃ has been derived from the Arabic root ذرء which signifies to create. The Holy Qur’an has used this word to signify the same meanings in a number of verses. The word ‘Dhurriyyah’ (. ذُرِّیِّۃ) therefore signifies all those created. This implies that the covenant of Eternity included all the human beings as they are the progeny of Adam (عليه السلام) .
We find some more information about this covenant in the litera¬ture of Hadith. Imam Malik, Abu Dawud, Tirmidhi and Imam Ahmad have reported on the authority of Muslim bin Yasar that some people asked the Caliph ‘Sayyidna ` Umar al-Faruq (رض) of the connotation of this verse. He said that the same question was put to the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) and the answer of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) as he heard it was as follows:
“Allah Almighty first created Adam then He placed His hand upon his back, and drew forth all the righteous descendants of Adam who were to come into being and said, “I have created them for the Paradise, and they shall act righteously as to deserve Paradise. Then He placed His hand on the back of Adam and all the wicked descendants that were to come into being appeared. He said, “I have created them for the Hell, and they shall act wickedly as to lead them to Hell.”
Someone from among the companions of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) asked him, “When Allah has already decided the fate of the mankind why the people are asked to do good deeds, while they are of no effect. The Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said, “Whoever is created for Paradise, he starts doing good deeds making him worthy of paradise and he dies in this state, while the one created for the Hell involves himself in wicked acts making him liable of the fires of Hell until he dies doing such deeds as leads him to the Hell.”
That is to say, when one is not aware of the category he belongs to, he must invest all his effort and energy in doing such deeds as are the characteristics of the people of Paradise and should be hopeful of his being one among them.
The Tradition reported by Imam Ahmad on the authority of the Companion Abu al-Darda’ (رض) has added that the people who appeared the first time were of fair colour while those appearing the second time were black.
The same description reported by Tirmidhi on the authority of the Companion Abu Hurairah (رض) has additionally reported that all the children of Adam (عليه السلام) who were to come in the world upto the end of time had a kind of brilliance on their foreheads.
Here we are faced with two descriptions apparently differing from one another. The descriptions given by the above traditions have described the children of Adam coming out of the back of the Prophet Adam (عليه السلام) while the Qur’anic verse under discussion has related them as coming forth from the backs of the progeny of Adam (عليه السلام) . In fact, there is no conflict between the two descriptions as the direct descendants of Adam are described as coming forth from the back of Adam (عليه السلام) while the people coming after them have been described as coming forth from the backs of his descendants.
The aim of this pledge taken from the whole mankind was to make them acknowledge that Allah Almighty is the Nourisher, The Sustainer or the Lord of all the created beings. This implies that the children of Adam (عليه السلام) coming forth from the back of the Prophet Adam (عليه السلام) were not in the form of spirit alone but also had a certain kind of physique made of some fine elements. It is because the function of nourishing is directly related to body which is made to progress from one state to another. The spirits do not require this kind of nourishment as they remain in one state from the moment of their creation. This is also supported from the above traditions speaking of the fair and black colour or the brilliance on their forehead because both, the colour and brilliance, require some material form to show their existence. The spirits obviously have no colour.
One may wonder how all the human beings to be created up to the Last Day could have gathered in one place. This also has been explained by the Tradition narrated by the Companion Abu al-Darda’ (رض) which said that they did not appear with their usual size rather they appeared in the size of a small ant. In this age of scientific knowledge it should be of no surprise how a man of human size can be reduced to the size of an ant. The science has established the fact that a perfect system similar to our solar system is functioning in and around the nucleus of an atom. The books of hundreds of pages can be reduced to a dot of small size through a process of micro filming. It should not, therefore, be a matter of surprise that Allah, the All-Powerful, might have reduced them to the size of an ant at this occa¬sion.
The above discussion with regard to the covenant of eternity gives rise to a couple of questions:
- Which was the time and place of the covenant?
- This pledge was taken prior to the creation of all human beings, excluding Adam (عليه السلام) . How did the children of Adam have knowledge and reason to acknowledge Allah almighty as being the Nourisher or their Lord which requires the experience of their being nourished which was not possible prior to coming as human being on the earth.
The first question has been answered by the Companion ` Abdullah ibn ` Abbas (رض) as reported through authentic sources by Imam Ahmad and Nasa’i that the covenant was taken at the time when Adam (عليه السلام) was sent down from heavens to the earth. The place was the valley of Nauman known as the plain of ` Arafat (Near Makkah).
As to the second question with regard to inability of their acknowl¬edging Allah as their Lord prior to their creation, the answer is quite simple. Allah Almighty who has all the powers to do anything He wills, and who was able to make all the human beings appear in a size of an ant could more easily imbue knowledge and reason enough to make them capable of recognizing their Lord, the Nourisher. Allah made them appear with body and soul in a small size with all the physical functions needed by a perfect human being. Reason and understanding being the most significant functions must have been included.
Another question which remains unsettled is as to what value can be attached to a covenant occurring prior to the actual creation of human beings, and which is not remembered by them after they take their actual existence on the earth? Before proceeding to answer this question we may add that, in some cases, there have been individuals who remembered the occasion of this covenant. For example, the great spiritual leader Dhul Nun al-Misri has said, “I remember the occur¬rence of this covenant as clearly as I am hearing it this very moment.” Some of the elders have reported to have remembered even the people who were present near them. True, that such cases are rare and do not make an answer to the above question.
The answer to this question, therefore, is that there are many things or acts which are effective in their very nature without any regard to their being remembered or understood by others. They imprint the effect on others quite naturally.
For example, the common practice, among Muslims, of saying Adhan1 in the right ear of a new born and reciting iqamah in his left ear is an obvious example of such acts. The baby neither understands the meaning of this call nor does he remember it after becoming an adult. The wisdom behind this religious practice is nothing but to revive the pledge he has taken with Allah, and sow the seed of Faith in his heart by repeating the message of the covenant in his ears. The influence of this act is so obvious that can be seen in every Muslim individual even if he is not practically a good Muslim. He takes pride in calling himself a Muslim and utterly dislikes being deprived of this categorical entity.
- Adhan is a call for salah the ritual prayer which in fact is a bold declaration that Allah is one, has no partners, and is the greatest of all etc. while iqamah is the same declaration with added enunciation that the salah has been set ready to be joined by people. (Translator)
Similarly the commandment of reciting the Qur’an even to those who do not know Arabic is perhaps for the same reason that their hearts are enlightened with the impact of the Qur’anic words, and their Faith in Allah is renovated therewith.
The wisdom behind this covenant is similarly to sow the seed of Faith in the heart of every human being. This seed is taking its nour¬ishment in the soil of human heart , no matter whether people are conscious of it or not. The fruit of this seed manifests itself in the form of love and respect for god (Allah) which is a part of human nature. The expression of this love and respect, may take unjust forms like worshipping false gods – idols or created beings. The worships, just or unjust, is in itself, an expression of love and respect for the creator. The billions of people have this respect and love for Allah which is expressed by them through their worship according to their ideas of worship guided by their knowledge or ignorance. There is no need to speak of those few who, under the influence of mundane pursuits have deteriorated their natural understanding and forgot the pledge they made with Allah.
The Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) has said: کُلُّ مَولُودِ یُولَدُ عَلَی الفِطرَۃِ every baby is born on Fitrah (nature, that is, Islam) then he is converted by his parents to their religion. The Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) has said in a Tradition that Allah Almighty has said, ‘I have created my servants as Hanif, that is, having faith in Allah, the One, then they were led astray by Satanic influences.”
The next sentence of the verse has said:
أَن تَقُولُوا يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ إِنَّا كُنَّا عَنْ هَـٰذَا غَافِلِينَ
“Lest you should say on the Day of Doom, “We were ignorant of this.”
That is to say, the pledge taken by Allah has lit the candle of Faith in their hearts. Now with little reflection they can easily recognize Him as their Lord. Therefore, their excuse of ignorance shall not be of any avail to them on the Day of Judgment.
وَاتْلُ عَلَيْهِمْ نَبَاَ الَّذِيْٓ اٰتَيْنٰهُ اٰيٰتِنَا فَانْسَلَخَ مِنْهَا فَاَتْبَعَهُ الشَّيْطٰنُ فَكَانَ مِنَ الْغٰوِيْنَ
The above verses have described the story of a religious leader of the Israelites who had a great following for his piety and knowledge but suddenly went astray and became among the rejected. This event contains a number of lessons and points of exhortation, and has a link with the preceding verses. The foregoing verses spoke of the covenant made by Allah with the children of Adam in general, and with certain people in varied circumstances. The above verses also made a mention of those people who did not fulfill their pledge with Allah. For example, the Israelites who were awaiting the arrival of a prophet and used to describe his attributes to others, but after the Holy Prophet made his appearance, they rejected him just for worldly considerations.
The story of Bal’am bin Ba’ura
The present verses have related the story of a saintly person among the Israelites. The Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) has been asked to relate this story to his people to show how a devoted scholar and great spiritual leader was deprived of all the knowledge, wisdom, popularity and fame only by following the mundane desires.
We do not find any personal identification or name of this person mentioned in the Holy Qur’an. There are, however, many Traditions reported by the exegetes of the Holy Qur’an and the Companions and their disciples, giving a variety of information about him. The most authentic and trusted by the majority of scholars is the Tradition reported by Ibn Marduwaih on the authority of the Companion ` Abdullah ibn ` Abbas (رض) which is as follows:
The name of this man was Bal’am bin Ba’ura. He belonged to Syria living in Canaan near Jerusalem. According to a report he was an Israelite by birth. He had knowledge of certain books revealed by Allah. The Qur’anic phrase اَلَذِی آتَینٰہُ آیٰتنا . “The one whom We gave Our verses” refers to the same knowledge.
This event belongs to the period after the death of pharaoh and his people and the victory of the Israelites over Egypt. Allah commanded The Prophet Musa (عليه السلام) and his people to fight war against a people called جَبَّارِین Jabbarin. The Jabbarin who had seen the fate of Pharaoh and his people were greatly frightened when they saw the army of the Prophet Musa عليه السلام approaching them. They came to Bal’am and said that the Prophet Musa (عليه السلام) was a strong man and that he had come with great army in order to expel them from their land. He should therefore pray Allah that He may turn them back without fighting war against them. Bal’am bin Ba` ura was known to be having the knowledge of ” اِسمِ اَعظَم ‘ (the most gracious name of Allah). He used to pray with the help of this name and his prayers were generally granted.
Bal’am said to them that Musa, being the prophet of Allah, had the support of Allah’s angels and he could not pray against him. He said that he knew the rank that Musa (عليه السلام) held with Allah, and that by praying against him he will ruin himself both in this world and in the world to come. Being insisted by the people Bal’am promised that he will first seek the consent of Allah for such a prayer, and in case Allah permitted him to pray against Musa he shall do so accordingly.
He performed some act to seek Allah’s consent and in a dream was prohibited by Allah from making such prayer. He came to the people and informed them of this prohibition. The Jabbarin presented him a gift of considerable value which he accepted. Subsequent to this gift their insistence increased. Some reports said that his wife advised him to accept the gift, and pray for them. Being blinded by the love of wealth and wife, he started praying against the Prophet Musa (عليه السلام) and his people. An unusual thing happened at this occasion. By the will of Allah the words he wanted to utter against the Prophet Musa عليه السلام in his invocation, were uttered against the people of Jabbarin themselves. They cried out and admonished him that he was invoking against themselves. Bal’am said that he was unable to utter a word against Musa (عليه السلام) and that he had no control over his utterances.
Consequently the Jabbarin met the fate of disaster from the heavenly punishment, and the punishment of Bal’am was that his tongue protruded from under his mouth so much so that it dangled on his chest. Bal’am having ruined his life both in this world and in the world to come and being deprived of all spiritual powers he had, made a suggestion to the people of Jabbarin saying, “There is only one way you can overcome the Israelites. Decorate your beautiful girls and send them to the Israelites giving them instructions that they should not put on any resistance against whatever is done by the Israelites. Being away from their homes they are likely to involve themselves in adultery. Being the most detestable act to Allah, adultery has to incur the wrath of Allah. An adulterous people can never win over their enemy.” This satanic suggestion was accepted by the people and they acted accordingly. A prominent person of the Israelites fell prey to this trap. The Prophet Musa (عليه السلام) made all his effort to stop him from this act but he involved himself in this wicked act.
Consequently plague overtook them as a punishment, with a death toll of seventy thousand people in one day. The person who had committed the sin was murdered along with the girl and was hung by the Israelites at a public place. Then they turned to Allah in repen¬tance and asked His forgiveness, which relieved them of this disgraceful punishment.
The Holy Qur’an used the expression of ‘wriggling out’ for Bal’am’s disregard to the knowledge and wisdom Allah had given to him through His verses. The Arabic expression فَانسَلَخَ مِنْهَا “He wriggled out from the verses of Allah” signifies coming out of an animal from its skin like a snake which leaves its old skin behind having no concern with it. This indicates that Bal’am had totally disregarded the knowl¬edge and wisdom he was granted by Allah. The text phrase: فَأَتْبَعَهُ الشَّيْطَانُ “So, Satan overtook him” implies that as long as he possessed the knowledge of the verses of Allah, Satan was unable to possess him. As soon as Bal’am was deprived of this great gift of Allah, he overtook him and led him astray. Consequently he became one of the misguided people فَكَانَ مِنَ الْغَاوِينَ “And he became one of the misled.
وَلَوْ شِئْنَا لَرَفَعْنٰهُ بِهَا وَلٰكِنَّهٗٓ اَخْلَدَ اِلَى الْاَرْضِ وَاتَّبَعَ هَوٰىهُ
The next verse (176) has said:
وَلَوْ شِئْنَا لَرَفَعْنَاهُ بِهَا وَلَـٰكِنَّهُ أَخْلَدَ إِلَى الْأَرْضِ وَاتَّبَعَ هَوَاهُ
“And if We so willed, we would have elevated him thereby, but he clung to the earth, and followed his desire.”
The word’ أَخْلَدَ (Akhlada) is a derivative of اِخلَاد which means to incline or to cling to something. The word أَرْض (ard) meaning the earth includes the globe itself and all the things present. Furniture, machines; clothes and food are in fact, the gift of this earth. By implication all the worldly possessions have been taken to include in a single word – the earth. The quintessence of this verse is that the knowledge of the verses of Allah are the real source of gaining prominence and advancement. For those who show disregard to them and give preference to worldly desires and possessions, this very knowledge becomes a source of disgrace and disaster for them.
The verse under discussion has expressed this fact by way of a similitude. It said.
فَمَثَلُهُ كَمَثَلِ الْكَلْبِ إِن تَحْمِلْ عَلَيْهِ يَلْهَثْ
“So his example is like the example of a dog; if you attack him, he pants, and if you leave him alone he pants.”
The word لْهَثْ (Lahath) signifies to breath hard by ejecting one’s tongue out.
The process of inhaling fresh air and exhaling unclean air is vital for every living being. Allah has made this process as automatic and easy as requires no effort on the part of living creatures – dog is excepted. It is only dog that has to labour hard for the process of breathing, while other animals have to make such effort only when they are attacked or undergo some strenuous task. Bal’am b. Baura has been mentioned in this verse as being similar to dog. He had his tongue protruded and panted like a dog who pants when attacked and pants when let alone.
The next sentence of the verse said: ذَّٰلِكَ مَثَلُ الْقَوْمِ الَّذِينَ كَذَّبُوا بِآيَاتِنَا “That is the example of those who belied our signs.” According to the Companion ` Abdullah ibn ` Abbas (رض) “this has a reference to the Israelites of Makkah who were always longing for someone sent to them as their leader inviting them to Allah and teaching them the ways of following the right path. When this long-awaited prophet came to them with as transparent signs of Truth as left no room -for the resistance in his way, they too, ‘wriggled out’ from the commandments of Torah exactly as Bal’am Ba’ura had done.
The last sentence of this series said: فَاقْصُصِ الْقَصَصَ لَعَلَّهُمْ يَتَفَكَّرُونَ “So relate the chronicles (to them) so that they may ponder.” The Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) has been asked to relate the story of Bal’am Ba’ura to them in order that they may take lesson from it and use their understanding.
سَاۗءَ مَثَلَۨا الْقَوْمُ الَّذِيْنَ كَذَّبُوْا بِاٰيٰتِنَا وَاَنْفُسَهُمْ كَانُوْا يَظْلِمُوْنَ
The last verse in this series 176 said, “So evil is example of those who belied our signs and they have been doing harm to themselves.”
The General Message of the Verses
The above verses contain a number of useful points for the benefit of those who are heedful and make use of their understanding. Firstly, no one should be boastful of his knowledge and be proud for his piety. Things can change without notice just as happened with Bal’am Ba’ura. One has to be grateful to his Lord for all the knowledge and wisdom he has, and should keep praying Allah for being firm in his faith.
Secondly, one should avoid situations which seem to threat his faith and knowledge. Specially so, when money, wife and children are involved because the love, of these things is the most powerful agent of misguidance.
Thirdly, one should avoid the company of the misguided people and be careful in accepting gift or invitation from them. Bal’am met the evil fate through accepting the gift of the Jabbarin.
Fourthly, the acts of immodesty like adultery and fornication are the source of ruin and disaster for all the people living in a society. Those who want to save themselves from distress must prevent their people from committing such crimes, otherwise it will invite Allah’s wrath and punishment upon them.
Fifthly, deviation from the commandments of Allah is, in itself a punishment and it opens the door to satanic influences, which work upon them quite unknowingly and lead them astray. Therefore, any one with knowledge must be conscious of this valuable treasure and seek Allah’s help in protecting it from evil influences. He must care-fully keep correcting himself against error.
مَنْ يَّهْدِ اللّٰهُ فَهُوَ الْمُهْتَدِيْ ۚ وَمَنْ يُّضْلِلْ فَاُولٰۗىِٕكَ هُمُ الْخٰسِرُوْنَ
The main theme of the verse 178 is that guidance and misguidance both are from Allah. He is the creator of good and evil, guidance and misguidance. The guided are those whom Allah has given guidance and losers are those whom Allah lets go astray. This theme has been mentioned repeatedly by the Qur’an in many other verses to make the mankind know that Allah has created good and evil and has provided with clear instructions to distinguish one from the other, and with a kind of free will to choose one of the two paths. Those who willfully choose the right path and do good deeds get their reward from Allah while those who willfully take to the other path and do evil deeds are punished and sent to Hell.
Here we note that the above verse has mentioned the people of guidance in singular person while the people who are wrong and misguided have been mentioned in plural. This indicates that the path of guidance is the one true faith which was followed by all the prophets right from Adam (عليه السلام) to the last of all Prophets (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) . The basic message of all the prophets has been one and the same. That is to say, the fundamentals preached by all the prophets were all same in every age. Therefore, people of any age and denomination who believed in their prophets and followed the teachings preached by them are considered by Allah belonging to one and the same category – that is, the guided. On the contrary, the ways of misguidance have been thousands in number, hence mentioned in plural in this verse.
Another point to be noted in this verse is that the people following the path of misguidance have been mentioned along with their punish¬ment of Hell, while no mention has been made of any reward of the people following the right path. The verse mentioned them saying that they are ‘the guided’. This implies that guidance, in itself, is the greatest blessing of all, which encompasses all the rewards and boun¬ties existing in this world or in the Hereafter. The reward of guidance requires no specific mention of other rewards which are embodied therein.
For example, some great king assures some individual that he is a close friend of the king and he shall be heard and trusted by him. Certainly he enjoys the highest position among the royal officials. He does not require the achievement of a formal rank or position. Simi¬larly, when Allah has given the title of being ‘the guided’ to any one, he has got all the rewards of the world. The elders have therefore said that the remembrance and worship of Allah are themselves the reward of the worship, because they are the great favour of Allah.
Any one engaged in the worship of Allah is receiving the greatest reward of Allah at the same time. Other blessings which wait for him in this world and in Paradise are second to it, as they are the fruit of this guidance.
This also explains the meaning of another Qur’anic verse in which the believers are promised to receive from their Lord their reward. It said جَزَاءً مِّن رَّبِّكَ عَطَاءً “A recompense from your Lord, a gift.” Here the reward of the believers has been expressed by two different words جَزَاءً a recompense and Ata which is gift. The word جَزَاءً signifies something offered in return of some service while the word: عَطَاءً ‘Ata is a gift offered without any service or performance. This leads us to the fact that things which we take to be rewards of our performance or attain¬ments are, in fact, the gift from our Lord. For the performance which has drawn this reward was in itself a gift from Allah Almighty who let us perform that particular service.
وَلَقَدْ ذَرَاْنَا لِجَهَنَّمَ كَثِيْرًا مِّنَ الْجِنِّ وَالْاِنْسِ ڮ لَهُمْ قُلُوْبٌ لَّا يَفْقَهُوْنَ بِهَا
The next verse is an extension of the same theme. It said:
وَلَقَدْ ذَرَأْنَا لِجَهَنَّمَ كَثِيرًا مِّنَ الْجِنِّ وَالْإِنسِ ۖ لَهُمْ قُلُوبٌ لَّا يَفْقَهُونَ بِهَا وَلَهُمْ أَعْيُنٌ لَّا يُبْصِرُونَ بِهَا
“And surely, we have created for Hell a lot of people from among Jinn and mankind. They possess heart wherewith they understand not, have eyes wherewith they see not and they have ears wherewith they hear not.”
That is, many Jinns and human beings have been created for Hell, because in spite of having all the means of guidance, the heart, the eyes and the ears, they do not use them to seek guidance. They could find the right path, had they used these faculties in proper way. They do not use their hearts to understand, their eyes to see things to be seen and their ears to hear things to be heard.
As a substance of the verse we are given to understand that ulti¬mate end or destiny is a divine secret, not known to anyone, but there are definite signs which help us to make a surmise. The people of Hell can be identified by their characteristic sign of not making proper use of their faculties of seeing, hearing and understanding. Allah has blessed us with these faculties for acquiring knowledge and recogni¬tion of our Lord. The people of Hell invest these abilities in worthless objectives and are evidently heedless of the real aim of man’s life, that is, to earn with his capabilities eternal comfort and peace in the Hereafter through seeking guidance.
A Question and its answer
A question may be asked about the above Qur’anic verses. Here the Holy Qur’an has negated their qualities of hearing, seeing and understanding. On the other hand, we see that in real life they are not blind, deaf and insane. Like other human beings they do see, hear and understand things around them. How can this negation be reconciled with the actual fact?
The answer requires to refresh our usual knowledge with regard to things and living beings around us. Everything created has an amount of sensibility equal to the need of its purpose of existence. The things we call inanimate are not totally devoid of sensibility or life. The stones and the earth which are not assigned with the duty of growth or movement have so little an amount of sensitivity that can hardly be detected1.
- Human reason essentially requires the presence of some kind of perception or life in things called inanimate. It is because there must be some way of communication between the Creator and the created. The one who cannot communicate with created beings for the absence of sensibility on their part, is not worthy of being called god. Allah does communicate with all His created beings, animate or inanimate, which proves some kind of sensibility in all inanimate things. (Translator)
The vegetable Kingdom comes next in this series. The purpose of their existence requires growth and nourishment. The amount of perception or life given to them is greater in degree and is equal to their requirements. Next we come to animal kingdom where we find more elaborate and complex form of life. In addition to growth and nourishment, the animals have to move on the earth from one place to another. They have to seek their food to maintain their existence. They require protecting themselves from dangers and above all, they are required to reproduce their children. The amount of life given to them is greater and more obvious than the others so far discussed. They are, however, equipped with as much powers only as were needed to assist them in feeding and protecting themselves from dangers and enemies.
The last, but not the least, is human being who, in addition to, and more prominent of all the functions discussed above, has the duty of recognizing his Creator and the Lord of the universe, and seek His pleasure by following His commandments and avoid doing things disliked by Him. He is required to contemplate and give due thought to the creations and use his faculty of reason to distinguish right from wrong, abstain from evil and do good to please his Lord. Another distinction of a human being from other creatures is that he has been provided with vast opportunity to make progress in making his life more purposeful and more elevated in position. When he comes to make progress, he can attain more elevated rank than the angels. He is accountable for his acts and is promised of eternal peace and comfort for his good acts and everlasting punishment and distress for his evil deeds. He has been, therefore, trusted with the highest and the most perfect degree of life, in order that he is engaged in doing things that are proper for the aim of his life. He is not expected to waste his special faculties of understanding, hearing and seeing in the achieve-ment of material things only like animals.
Keeping the above points in view, the human faculties of understanding, hearing and seeing should essentially be distinct from those of the animals. If he did not make special use of these faculties like distinguishing right from wrong, doing good and keeping away from evil, he would be rightly considered among those who have eyes but do not see, have ears but do not listen, have mind and heart but do not understand. The Hoy Qur’an has therefore termed them as صُمٌّ بُكْمٌ “deaf, dumb and blind”.
The verse therefore has not negated their physical ability of seeing, hearing and understanding. Rather, the Holy Qur’an has affirmed their knowledge about worldly things in the following words,
يَعْلَمُونَ ظَاهِرًا مِّنَ الْحَيَاةِ الدُّنْيَا وَهُمْ عَنِ الْآخِرَةِ هُمْ غَافِلُونَ ﴿7﴾
“They know the outward aspect of this worldly life, but of the Hereafter they are heedless.” (30:7)
In another verse the Holy Qur’an, speaking the destruction of the people of ` Ad and Thamud, said: وَكَانُوا مُسْتَبْصِرِينَ “While they could see clearly.” (29:38)
The people of ` Ad and Thamud being allured by satanic influences involved themselves in evil deeds which led them to their destruction. That is to say they kept the use of their capabilities limited to abject worldly gains like serving their physical needs and remained heedless to their spiritual demands. No matter what great advances they make in science and technology, they may conquer space, explore moon and other planets, make the world full of their sophisticated satellites, and tame the natural forces to serve their varied needs, but all such efforts are no more than a means of serving their physical and material life. It does not go beyond, to seek spiritual peace and comfort. This achievement science and technology of man is certainly confined to serving his physical life only, which does not make him distinct from the animal in technicality. It is why the Holy Qur’an calls them deaf, dumb and blind because they heard, saw and understood things that belonged to this world only. They did not make proper use of these functions which could lead them to eternal success and peace. The last phrase of this verse said that they are like cattle investing all their effort in serving their bodily desires. Next the verse added بَلْ هُمْ أَضَلُّ “Rather they are much more misled.” that is, they are far more unwise than are the cattle, because the animals are not bound to follow the laws of the Shari’ah. They have no reward or punishment for their acts. They are required only to serve their physical needs which they are efficiently doing, contrary to human beings who are accountable for everything they do in this world, and they are going to be punished or rewarded according to their performance. If they confine their effort only to seek material gains of this world and do not make proper use of their faculties, they are certainly more imprudent and unwise as compared to animals.
وَلِلّٰهِ الْاَسْمَاۗءُ الْحُسْنٰى فَادْعُوْهُ بِهَا ۠ وَذَرُوا الَّذِيْنَ يُلْحِدُوْنَ فِيْٓ اَسْمَاۗىِٕهٖ ۭ سَيُجْزَوْنَ مَا كَانُوْا يَعْمَلُوْنَ
This verse has a relationship with the preceding verses in the sense that the people of Hell discussed above did not use their abilities in seeking the everlasting comforts of the Hereafter, and made themselves liable to eternal punishment. The present verse has provided with remedy of their disease. That is, seeking help from Allah by calling Him with His good names and often remembering Him through them.
The good names of Allah
The good names are the ones that denote the attributes having the highest degree of perfection. It goes without saying that the perfection of the highest degree is not possessed by anyone but Allah. In case of a ‘perfect’ human being there is always a possibility of someone being higher than him in some qualities. This is what the Qur’anic phrase has said: وَفَوْقَ كُلِّ ذِي عِلْمٍ عَلِيمٌ “And above every man of knowledge there is someone more knowledgeable.” (12:76)
The style of the verse has suggested that these ‘beautiful names’ are peculiarly meant for Allah. فَادْعُوهُ بِهَا “So, call Him by them”, because there is none other than Allah who owns these attributes, therefore the only one worthy of being called in need is none but He. Calling is a rendering of the word which has two characteristics: Praising, purifying and remembering Allah, and calling Him for help in times of need or difficulty. It implies, that Allah alone is worthy of praise and glorification and He alone has to be called for help and relief. The verse has also suggested that the best method of calling Him is to call Him by His Beautiful Names.
Preconditions of Du` a (calling Allah)
The verse has provided us with two valuable information. Firstly, there is none other than Allah worthy of praise and worthy of being called for help. Secondly, Allah has provided us with specific words for calling him, proper to His glorious being, as we are not capable of choosing appropriate words for this purpose. That is, we are required to call Him by His attributes of perfections.
Bukhari and Muslim have reported on the authority of the Companion Abu Hurairah (رض) that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said:
“There are ninety nine names of Allah. Whoever learns them by heart shall enter paradise.”
Tirmidhi and Hakim have enumerated these names in detail. Invo¬cations made by reciting these names are generally granted. Allah has promised in the Holy Qur’an ادْعُونِي أَسْتَجِبْ لَكُمْ “Call me and I will answer you” (40:60). The most definite and certain method of seeking help in one’s need and getting relief from one’s distress is calling Allah and praying Him for His help. This is the only way that is certain to meet success. The immediate benefit of praying to Allah is that it is, in itself, a worship. The reward of this worship is included in the sheet of one’s deeds.
The Holy Prophet وَفَوْقَ كُلِّ ذِي عِلْمٍ عَلِيمٌ said in a Tradition: اَلدُّعَاُء مُخُ العِبَدَہِ “Invoking Allah is the quintessence of worship.” The invocation is granted by Allah in many ways. Sometimes, the very thing for which the invocation has been made is granted by Allah, while some other times, when one asks for something untimely or unsuitable for him in the knowledge of Allah is exchanged with something more proper or beneficial for him.
Remembering Allah by glorifying and praising Him is the food for one’s Faith in Allah (‘Iman) which helps in magnifying the love, respect and awareness of Allah making the hardship of this world worthless in one’s eyes.
Al-Bukhari, Muslim, Tirmidhi and Nasa’i have reported through authentic sources that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said that anyone who finds himself in some difficulty or is distressed with some grief should recite the following words:
لَا إِلَـٰهَ إِلَّا اللہُ الْعَظِيمِ اَلحَلِیمُ ، لَآ إِلَـٰهَ إِلَّا اللہُ رَبُّ الْعَرْشِ الْعَظِيمِ ، لَا إِلَـٰهَ إِلَّا اللہُ رَّبُّ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالاَرضِ وَرَبُّ الْعَرْشِ الْکريم
“There is no god but Allah, the Greatest, the Most forbearing, There is no god but Allah, the Lord of the great Throne. There is no god but Allah, the Lord of the Heavens, and the earth and the Lord of the Glorious Throne.”
Hakim in his Mustadrak has reported on the authority of the Companion Anas (رض) that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said to his daughter Sayyidah Fatimah al-Zahra (رض)
“What is there to prevent you from hearing my advice of reciting the following invocation at morning and evening every day?”
یِا حَیُّ یَا قَیُّومُ بِرَحمَتِکَ اَستَغِیثُ اَصلِح لِی شَأنِی کُلَّہُ وَلَا تَکِلنِی اِلٰی نَفسِی طَرفَۃَ عَین
“0 The Alive, The All-Sustaining, I call for help by Your Mercy. Set right every situation that I am in, and do not leave me at the mercy of my inner-self for even a wink of an eye.”
The above invocation is also an effective remedy of hardships and distress. In short, we have been given two instructions in this verse namely making invocation to Allah alone for seeking help or for pleasing the Creator, secondly, calling Allah by His attributes of perfection without changing them.
The next sentence said:
وَذَرُوا الَّذِينَ يُلْحِدُونَ فِي أَسْمَائِهِ ۚ سَيُجْزَوْنَ مَا كَانُوا يَعْمَلُونَ
“And leave those who deviate in (the matter of) His names. They shall be recompensed for what they had been doing.”
The Arabic word اِلحَاد ‘Ilhad’ signifies to decline from the centre. In Qur’anic terminology the word ‘Ilhad’ is used for deviating from the correct interpretation of the Qur’anic words or distorting the meanings of the Qur’anic message.
The Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) has been asked to keep away from the people who distort or decline from the prescribed names of Allah.
The Deviation from the good names
There are many forms of deviating from the prescribed names of Allah. Firstly, calling Allah by such names as are not specified in the Holy Qur’an or in the Sunnah. The ` Ulama’ (Scholars) of the ummah are unanimous on the point that it is not permissible to call Allah by any names or attributes of one’s own choice or to praise Him by the names which have not been specified by the Qur’an and the Sunnah. For example, Allah may be called by the word: نُور Nur (light) but not by the word ‘white’. Similarly Allah may be called ‘Karim’ (generous) but not by the word ‘Sakhi’: سَخِی having the same meaning. He can be called Shafi شَافِی (The one who provides cure from disease) but not طَبِیب ‘Tabib’ (The doctor). Though the matching words carry the same mean¬ings they are not allowed simply because they have not been reported by the Qur’an and the Sunnah.
The second way of deviating from these names of Allah is to abandon certain name or names only because one thinks them to be inappropriate in certain situations. It, obviously, amounts to lack of respect to the glorious names of Allah.
Calling the people with the names of Allah
The third way of deviation from these names is to use any of the good names of Allah for other people. This however, has some excep¬tions as explained in the following lines:
There are certain names in the list of the glorious names of Allah which have been used by the Qur’an and the Sunnah for human beings. Such names can be used for beings other than Allah. For example, Rahim, Rashid, ` Ali, Karim and ` Aziz etc., while there are other names which denote to exclusive attributes of Allah. Their use for anyone other than Allah is an act of deviation from these names. For example, Rahman, Razzaq, Subhan, Khaliq, Quddus and Ghaffar etc. Using such names for anyone other than Allah is prohibited in the Islamic Shari` ah.
Now, if someone calls anyone other than Allah by these names because of his false belief, that he has the attributes denoted by these names it would be an act of infidelity. However, if someone used any of these names for anyone other than Allah just heedlessly and for the lack of knowledge, it would not be an act of infidelity, but having simi¬larities with it would be called a major sin.
It is a pity that Muslims in general are having a number of wrong practices with regard to naming their children and, calling them by improper names.
There is a group of people who have abandoned the practice of naming their children with Islamic names. Their modern names having, non Islamic character, mark it difficult to identify them as Muslims by their names. Specially so, when their general appearance and manners are already devoid of Islamic character. The Islamic female names like Khadijah, ` A’ishah, and Fatimah have been replaced with Najma, Pervin, Nasim, Shamim and Shahnaz etc.
More doleful practice among Muslims is to heedlessly curtail the Islamic names like ` Abd al-Khaliq, ` Abd al-Rahman ` Abd al-Razzaq or ` Abd al-Quddus etc. to Khaliq, Rahman, Razzaq and Quddus when calling people of these names. The attributes Khaliq خَالِق (The Creator) Rahman رَحمَٰن (The Merciful) Razzaq رَزَّاق (The Sustainer) and Quddus قُدُّوس (The Pure) are all exclusive attributes of Allah and using these attributes for anyone other than Allah is a major sin (گُنَاہِ کَبِیرَہ). The number of times one calls any one by these attributes only commits a major sin every time and becomes liable of great punishment.
This sinful practice has become quite common among Muslims for no gain. They have been committing this sinful act simply for being thoughtless to the gravity of this error. The present verse has warned against it by saying سَيُجْزَوْنَ مَا كَانُوا يَعْمَلُونَ “They shall soon be recompensed for what they have been doing”.
Many evils are committed for certain worldly gains or benefits. Any one committing such evil deed may pretend to offer an excuse that being constrained by some necessity he had committed the sin, while a great number of evil deeds are simply of no avail, and produce no worldly benefit at all. It is a sad situation that people are seen committing such evil deeds just for being careless of the command¬ments of Allah and being indifferent to what is prohibited or permitted by Allah. May Allah save us from such ignorance.
وَمِمَّنْ خَلَقْنَآ اُمَّةٌ يَّهْدُوْنَ بِالْحَقِّ وَبِهٖ يَعْدِلُوْنَ
The previous verses offered a remedy of calling Allah by His good names to those who were neglectfully not making proper use of their faculties. Now the verse 181 speaks of those who followed the right path. The verse said, “ And among those we have created, there are people who guide with truth and do justice thereby”. That is, they are a people who guide others to the straight path and decide all their matters according to the dictates of truth (the divine law).
Ibn Jarir has reported from his own sources that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) recited this verse and said, The people referred to in this verse are my people who shall decide their controversies according to justice and truth and observe justice in all their dealings.”
Abd ibn Humaid has reported that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said addressing his companions, “This verse has been revealed in your favour and prior to you there has been a group of people bearing the same attributes.” Then he recited this verse:
وَمِن قَوْمِ مُوسَىٰ أُمَّةٌ يَهْدُونَ بِالْحَقِّ وَبِهِ يَعْدِلُونَ ﴿159﴾
“And among the community of Musa there are people who guide with truth and do justice thereby.” (7:159)
That is to say, there was a group of people among the Israelites who had the attributes referred to in this verse, of guiding other people to the truth and deciding their matters according to the law of the Torah. Similarly, the Muslim Ummah has the same attributes as their distinct feature.
The essence of the message is firstly, to guide people to the right path in accordance with the dictates of the Shari` ah, and secondly, to decide all their controversies according to the law of Islam. The above two features offer, in fact, the guaranteed way of success, both in this world and in the Hereafter. Any group or individuals who follow the truth and justice in all their modes of life, and do not exhibit their personal prejudices while making judgments even for their enemies, are the people of truth refered to in this verse. The same has been the main characteristic of the Muslim Ummah who strictly observed the demands of truth and justice in all their dealings and overlooked their personal priorities when making judgments between people. The history has recorded unique examples of such truthful practices from the lives of the blessed Companions and their disciples.
From the day the Muslims started to show disregard to these two distinctive features of their character, an evident regression started to show itself in every sphere of their life. Remorsefully though, we have to acknowledge that majority of the Muslim Ummah have fallen prey to their personal desires. All their activities, their political, social and educational set ups are motivated by downtrodden worldly gains. Their guidance to other people is mainly aimed at getting some worldly benefits. Most of their family ceremonies are not only devoid of Islamic character, but demonstrate a behaviour opposed to Shari’ah. There are some family traditions designed in the name of religious ceremonies. Any one going against or showing dislike to these innovations has to face active opposition on their part. People are no more interested in organizing themselves purely for the propagation of truth and justice.
There is none to make them realize that this course of thought and action has to bring disaster to the Muslims at large. The only way to restore the dignity of the Muslim Ummah and to bring them back to the path. of progress and prosperity is to follow the way of truth and justice suggested by this verse. Conscious efforts should be made to create an awareness of these values among the Muslims.
يَسْــــَٔـلُوْنَكَ عَنِ السَّاعَةِ اَيَّانَ مُرْسٰىهَا ۭقُلْ اِنَّمَا عِلْمُهَا عِنْدَ رَبِّيْ ۚ
The verse 187 speaks of the third principle, that is, the life in the Hereafter (آخرَت). The revelation of this verse is related with the following incident reported by Ibn Jarir and ` Abd ibn Humaid on the authority of Qatadah.
The Quraish of Makkah once asked the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) by way of mockery as to when the Hour of doom was to occur of which he used to warn them so often. The verse was revealed in response to this question.
The Arabic word Sa` ah سَاعَۃ signifies a short period without specific number of minutes or hours, while in our calendar it is a single unit out of twenty four units of the day and night. In Qur’anic terminology, however, it is used for the day when all the created beings will cease to exist, as well as for the day when all the creation shall be revived and presented before the Lord of all the creations. مُرسٰی Mursa signifies to stop or to stay, لَا يُجَلِّيهَا ‘ is a derivative of تَجلِیہ which means to disclose or open. Baghtatan بَغتۃ means suddenly while the word ‘Hafiyyun’ حَفِیُّ is used for a scholar or a knowledgeable person according to Sayyidna ` Abdullah Ibn ` Abbas (رض) The word is generally used for a person who invests his effort and employs all his resources to ascertain some-thing.
The quintessence of the verse, therefore, is that the Quraish of Makkah should be answered that the exact time of the Doom is not known, and shall never be made known to anyone. It is a divine secret which shall disclose itself by it’s sudden occurrence, as has been decided by the Qur’anic phrase “It shall not come upon you but suddenly”.
Al-Bukhari and the Muslim have reported on the authority of Sayy¬idna Abu Hurairah (رض) that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said with regard to sudden occurrence of the ‘Qiyamah’ (The Doomsday) that it has been made a close secret. The wisdom behind it is obviously to make people live their lives peacefully which would have not been possible in case the definite time of death was known to them. Besides, those who do not believe in Doomsday would have made mockery of it by knowing the remotely long period of its occurrence. The divine wisdom chose to keep it undefined in order to keep people vaguely in fear of its dreadful events which, in fact, is an effective measure against crime and corrupt practices.
By implication, the above verses make us alive to the fact that once we have come to believe that the day of Qiyamah has inevitably to come and all the created beings shall necessarily be presented before the Lord of all the creation and be called to account for all their minor or major deeds, and shall be rewarded or punished according to their performance in this world, the knowledge of time and period of the death becomes immaterial. It will not be wise to waste precious time of one’s life in futile discussions like the time of occurrence of the Doomsday. On the contrary, human reason and wisdom demands that every moment of uncertain period of life is spent carefully in preparing oneself for the great Day of Judgment. This answer to the Quraish of Makkah made it clear that their question regarding the time of the Doomsday was a product of their ignorance. The next phrase of this verse speaks of another misconception of the disbelievers of Makkah. It said:
يَسْأَلُونَكَ كَأَنَّكَ حَفِيٌّ عَنْهَا
“They ask you as if you were aware of it.”
They thought that the Holy Prophet had, somehow, secured the knowledge of the exact time of the occurrence of the Doomsday and that he was not disclosing it for some purpose. They
insisted him to disclose it to them. The Holy Prophet صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم was asked to answer them in these words:
قُلْ إِنَّمَا عِلْمُهَا عِندَ اللَّـهِ وَلَـٰكِنَّ أَكْثَرَ النَّاسِ لَا يَعْلَمُونَ
“Say, it’s knowledge is only with Allah, but most of the people do not know.”
That is, it is not necessary for a prophet to know the definite time of the Doomsday or certain other matters that are kept secret by Allah. The lack of knowledge in such matters on the part of a prophet cannot, therefore, be taken as a proof against his prophethood. (The knowledge of a prophet can never be equal to the All-encompassing knowledge of Allah.)
The Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) ، however, was given knowledge of certain specific signs indicating that the Doomsday was in proximity. He has informed the Muslim Ummah of all these signs in explicit terms in his Traditions. In one of such Traditions he said that his appearance and the Day of Qiyamah were as close to each other as two fingers of a hand. (Tirmidhi)
As for the reports giving the total age of this world as seven thousand years, they are the reports borrowed from some Israelite litera¬ture in certain Islamic books. They are neither authentic nor do they have any basis in the Qur’an and the Sunnah. Similarly, geo-physical data of modern knowledge giving the age of this world as millions of years do not confront or contradict any of the Qur’anic verse or any authentic Tradition of the Holy Prophet صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم . On the contrary, the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) addressing the Muslim Ummah said in a Tradition:
“When compared to the early people, you are like a white thread of hair on the body of a black ox.”
This gives us an idea of the enormous age of this world as thought by the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) . Hafiz Ibn Hazm of Spain has, therefore, concluded that the exact age of this world cannot be assessed by any one1. (Marghni)
- By inference it seems physically impossible to have an exact assessment of the age of this universe, because it would give the exact time of the end of this universe which has been precluded by the above verse saying that the knowledge of the occurrence of the Doomsday is not known to any one but Allah. (Translator)
قُلْ لَّآ اَمْلِكُ لِنَفْسِيْ نَفْعًا وَّلَا ضَرًّا اِلَّا مَا شَاۗءَ اللّٰهُ
The Verse 188 clears away a common misbelief of the people regarding the prophets of Allah. They thought that the prophets must possess the knowledge of each and everything in the universe, including the knowledge of the unseen future and unknown past. Similarly, they thought that the prophets must possess the power of bringing benefit or harm to any one out of their own will. The verse made it clear that the all-encompassing knowledge is an exclusive attribute of Allah which cannot be ascribed to any created being. Ascribing these exclusive attributes to anyone other than Allah is the greatest transgression and is tantamount to associating partners with Allah. The very purpose of the revelation of the Holy Qur’an and the advent of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) has been to eliminate all the traces of plurality of god and to establish the purest unity of Allah (Tauhid).
The Holy Prophet has been asked to declare that, not to speak of others, even he was unable to harm or benefit himself and that he did not possess the knowledge of the unseen. Had he possessed such knowledge, he would have stored all the good for himself and would have saved himself from every possible harm. There are evident instances in which the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) could not achieve his objectives inspite of all his effort, and in many other instances, he could not save himself from the damages and harm that reached him. The incident of the treaty of Hudaibiyah is an evident example when the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) and his companions travelled all the way to Makkah in order to perform the ` Umrah but were stopped by the unbelievers of Makkah. Despite all their desire and effort, they had to go back to Madinah without performing ` Umrah. similarly, the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) was wounded in the battle of Uhud and the Muslims faced temporary defeat.
Perhaps, such events were allowed to happen, so that it may be demonstrated in practical terms that the Prophets, with due regards to their being closest to Allah and being the best of all the human beings, did not possess divine power and encompassing knowledge.
They were human like other human beings. The Christians fell prey to the same error. They ascribed the divine attributes of Allah to their Prophet and went astray.
The Prophets, however, are invested by Allah with as much knowl¬edge and power as no other human being has ever acquired. They Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) was certainly favoured with the degree of knowl¬edge which surpassed the knowledge of all other prophets. He informed the Muslims of many things which were to happen in future. All his foretellings were seen to happen exactly as he had foretold.
We can say that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) was given the knowledge of a number of unseen things, but in Qur’anic terminology this is not termed as (the knowledge of the unseen). Therefore, on the basis of this we are not allowed to call the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) عَالِمُ الغیب (the knower of the unseen), as knower of the unseen is none other than Allah.
The last sentence of the verse said, إِنْ أَنَا إِلَّا نَذِيرٌ وَبَشِيرٌ لِّقَوْمٍ يُؤْمِنُونَ I am but a warner and a harbinger of good for people who believe.” That is, he has been assigned the duty of warning the evil doers against the punishment of Allah and give the good tidings of great reward by Allah to those who are righteous.
هُوَ الَّذِيْ خَلَقَكُمْ مِّنْ نَّفْسٍ وَّاحِدَةٍ وَّجَعَلَ مِنْهَا زَوْجَهَا لِيَسْكُنَ اِلَيْهَا
The next verse 189 speaks of the most basic belief of Islam that is Tauhid and, at the same time, brings out the falsity of believing in more than one god. In the beginning of the verse Allah سُبحَانہ و تعالیٰ has mentioned the creation of Sayyidna ‘Adam and Sayyidah Hawwa’ (علیہما السلام) which was a manifestation of His perfect power. The verse said:
هُوَ الَّذِي خَلَقَكُم مِّن نَّفْسٍ وَاحِدَةٍ وَجَعَلَ مِنْهَا زَوْجَهَا لِيَسْكُنَ إِلَيْهَا
“He is the One who has created you from a single soul and from him created his wife, so that he may find comfort in her.”
This manifestation of Allah’s great Power should have made mankind more grateful to Allah and they must have abstained from associating partners with Allah, but negligent as they were, they acted differently. Their neglectful attitude has been referred to in this verse and in the next, in these words:
فَلَمَّا تَغَشَّاهَا حَمَلَتْ حَمْلًا خَفِيفًا فَمَرَّتْ بِهِ ۖ فَلَمَّا أَثْقَلَت دَّعَوَا اللَّـهَ رَبَّهُمَا لَئِنْ آتَيْتَنَا صَالِحًا لَّنَكُونَنَّ مِنَ الشَّاكِرِينَ ﴿189﴾ فَلَمَّا آتَاهُمَا صَالِحًا جَعَلَا لَهُ شُرَكَاءَ فِيمَا آتَاهُمَا ۚ فَتَعَالَى اللَّـهُ عَمَّا يُشْرِكُونَ ﴿190﴾
“So when he covered her with himself, she carried a light burden and moved about with it. Thereafter, when she grew heavy, they both prayed to Allah, their Lord, “If you bless us with a perfect child, we shall be among the grateful.” So, when Allah blessed them with a perfect one, they ascribed partners with Him.”
That is to say, at the initial stage of pregnancy the woman feels free to move about, but later when fetus grows heavy in her womb, the parents are anxious about their unborn. They are not sure if they would get a perfect child, because there are occasions when new born is not a normal child or is deaf dumb or blind etc. Having such appre¬hensions, they start praying for a perfect child and make promises with Allah to be grateful to Him if He favours them with a perfect child. Now, when Allah grants their prayers by giving them a normal and healthy baby, they ascribe partners with Allah, and thus their children, themselves, become the source of their misguidance.
It happens in a variety of ways. Sometimes they are misled by their false belief that their new born is a gift of some holy or godly person. Sometimes, they devote it to some living or dead person and start making offerings in their names. Some people take their children to them and bow their forehead before them. Sometimes, they involve themselves in Shirk شِرک by naming their children like ` Abdullat عبدَاللات ` Abd ul ` Uzza عبد العُزٰی ` Abdul Shams عَبد الشمس or Bandah ` Ali بَندہِ علی etc., assigning their children to false gods, indicating that these children have been created or gifted by these gods or personalities.
فَلَمَّآ اٰتٰىهُمَا صَالِحًا جَعَلَا لَهٗ شُرَكَاۗءَ فِيْمَآ اٰتٰىهُمَا ۚ فَتَعٰلَى اللّٰهُ عَمَّا يُشْرِكُوْنَ
In short, all the above acts or beliefs are different forms of ‘Shirk’ ~,. and the worst kind of ungratefulness to Allah, their Lord. The last sentence of this verse confirms misguidance of such people by saying:
فَتَعَالَى اللَّـهُ عَمَّا يُشْرِكُونَ
“So far beyond is Allah than what they associate with Him.”
The above interpretation of this verse has made it clear that by referring to the Prophet ‘Adam and Hawwa’ (Eve) (علیہما السلام) in the first sentence of this verse, the children of ‘Adam have been asked to follow him and show their gratefulness to Allah, while the rest of the verse speaks of the misguidance and perversion of their descendants who, instead of being grateful to their Lord ascribed partners to Him.
This makes it clear that the Prophet ‘Adam and Hawwa’ (علیہما السلام) have nothing to do with those who ascribed partners with Allah. The verse refers to the generations coming after them who were ungrateful to Allah and involved themselves in Shirk. We have adopted this interpretation on the authority of Sayyidna Ibn ` Abbas (رض) reported by Ibn al-Mundhir and Ibn Abi Hatim, in Tafsir al-Durr al-Manthur. The story related by Tirmidhi and Hakim about ‘Adam and Hawwa’ being deceived by Shaitan has been taken by some scholars as an unauthentic Israelite report which is liable to be rejected. Many Mulhaddithin, the scholars in Hadith have, on the other hand, confirmed it. The above interpretation, however, clears away any possible doubt even if the story is taken to be authentic.
The above verse has provided us with the following points of signif¬icant value.
- The men and women have been created in the same species in order that they may have a natural affinity and perfect understanding with each other, and discharge their duties towards the construction of a good society.
Havoc caused by immodesty
- The rights and obligations assigned to the married couple basi¬cally aim at providing a peaceful environment at home. There are many social behaviours of modern age that are directly opposed to the above objective of creating a peaceful atmosphere. For example, the so called freedom of woman has caused havoc to social peace. The alarming number of divorces and serious altercations are mostly the result of free mixing of men and women in society. By experience we know that the growth of immodest practices in society is proportional to the destruction of social values and deprives man of peace at home and in the society.
- The third point refers to the naming of one’s children. It is prohibited to give names to the children like ` Abdul Shams (The slave of the Sun) or ` Abd al ` Uzza (The slave of ` Uzza) which purport to assign them to entities other than Allah. Giving such names is prohib¬ited even if parents do not really mean it. This practice is a great sin in Islam.
- The best way of offering our gratitude to Allah is to name our children after the good names of Allah and His Messenger. The Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) has, therefore, recommended the names like ` Abd ur Raliman, and ` Abdullah etc.
It is a pity that, one by one, we are depriving ourselves of all the Islamic manners and values. Firstly, we give our children non Islamic names simply following the fashion of the non-Islamic cultures. In addition, we find that most of the parents abbreviate the names of their children into English initials which makes it all the more diffi¬cult to distinguish them as Muslims. specially so, when we have worn the appearance of the non-Muslims, altogether. May Allah favour us with the real understanding of Islam and Islamic values.
خُذِ الْعَفْوَ وَاْمُرْ بِالْعُرْفِ وَاَعْرِضْ عَنِ الْجٰهِلِيْنَ
The Ideal Manifesto of Qur’anic Ethics
The above verse provides us with a perfect code and model discipline of moral excellences. It was through this discipline that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) was trained and then was conferred with the title of صاحِب خُلق عظیم (The manifestation of all moral excellences) which is unique to him out of the whole mankind. After giving a description of obstinate ignorance, and immoral behaviour of the adversaries of Islam in the foregoing verses, the Holy Qur’an, in contrast to the above, provides the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) with some moral teachings. The first is خُذِ الْعَفْوَ (Take to forbearance). The Arabic word عَفْوَ has many significations. Each of them can be taken to mean here. This is why the experts in the exegesis of the Qur’an have presented varied comments on this verse. The most agreed interpretation of this word is that it is an act which can be done with ease or without any difficulty. The first sentence therefore, shall mean “Accept what people can do easily,” implying that, in the matter of Islamic obligations, the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) should not demand high standard of deeds from the people. Rather, he should accept the degree of perfection which can be achieved easily by the people.
To make it more clear, let us take the example of Salah (the prayer) which in true sense means to isolate oneself from all the worldly thoughts and actions and stand before his Lord in perfect veneration. He is supposed to present his praise to his Lord directly as though he is addressing his Lord and making his supplications to Him directly with nothing and no one between him and His Lord.
This state of mind shows itself in a worshipper by some expressive signs like خُشُوع و خُضُوع (submission and humbleness), which are achieved only by a few fortunate worshippers. This degree of veneration and love cannot be expected from all the worshippers. This verse has therefore, asked the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) not to demand the high stan¬dard of performance from the people, and to accept what degree of perfection they can achieve easily in their deeds.
The above interpretation has been reported in Sahih al-Bukhari on the authority of Sayyidna ` Abdullah ibn Zubair (رض) . Another report cited by Ibn Kathir, has said that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) ، at the time of the revelation of this verse, said, “I have been commanded (by Allah) to accept common or unexceptional obedience from the people in their worships and behaviour. I have, therefore, decided to do the same as long as I am in their company.” A large number of the exegetes of the Holy Qur’an like Sayyidna ` Abdullah Ibn ` Umar, ` Abdullah ibn Zubair, Sayyidah ` A’ishah رضی اللہ تعالیٰ عنہم and the scholar Mujahid have confirmed the same meaning of this Qur’anic phrase.
Another meaning of the word is to pardon or to forgive. Some of the exegetes have adopted this meaning here. According to them this Qur’anic phrase has asked the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) to pardon the errors and shortcomings of the people.
Imam Ibn Jarir al-Tabari, the great exegete of the Holy Qur’an has reported that at the time of revelation of this verse the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) asked the Archangel Jibra’il (عليه السلام) about the implication of this verse. The Archangel after confirming the meaning from Allah answered that you have been commanded to pardon the one who does you wrong, and to be generous to the one who gives you nothing, and to continue your relation with one who breaks off his connections with you.
Under the comment on this verse Ibn Marduwaih has reported, on the authority of Sayyidna Sa’ad ibn ` Ubadah (رض) ، that this verse was revealed when, in the battle of Uhud, Sayyidna Hamzah (رض) was martyred and parts of his body were savagely cut off. The Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) ، seeing his body in such miserable condition, said, “I shall behave to seventy of their people the way they have behaved with Hamzah.” This verse was revealed to him implying that it does not suit his dignified position. He should pardon and forgive people.
This is supported by another Hadith reported by Imam Ahmad (رح) on the authority of ‘Uqbah ibn ` Amir (رض) saying that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) had instructed him of the same. That is, to pardon the one who does wrong to him, to keep relation with one who cuts off his rela¬tion with him and to give the one who deprives him. Bayhaqi also has reported from Sayyidna ` Ali (رض) that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said to him. ‘I teach you the manners better than the manners of all the early and the later people, that you should give the one who deprives you, pardon the one who does wrong to you and continue your relation with one who breaks off with you.
The above two meanings of the word عفو hough, are different from each other but the purest essence of both is one and the same, that is, he should not demand the high standard of worship and deeds from the people and pardon them for their errors, and should not take revenge of their wrongs, and be generous to them with no regard to receiving any return from them.
The authentic records of the life of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) have shown that he demonstrated the truest picture of the above Qur’anic model of deeds and morals. This model appeared in full bloom when Makkah was conquered and his sworn enemies were at his mercy. At that time, he set all of them free saying that ‘far from any thoughts of seeking any revenge against them for their injustices, he would not even blame them in any way for what had happened between them in the past.’
The second sentence of this manifesto or testament reads: وَأْمُرْ بِالْعُرْفِ (and bid the Fair – 199). The word: 4 (` عُرْفِ ) meaning ‘recognized’ refers to everything done in a way which is good and praiseworthy. The sense is that he should not seek to avenge the oppressive treatment meted out to him by his enemies, rather, he should forgive them but, along with it, he should also continue to ask them to do what was good and beneficial. Thus, he would not only be repaying evil with good and injustice with justice alone, in fact, he would be repaying them for all that by a higher degree of favor and grace – that of Ihsan.
In the third sentence, it was said: وَأَعْرِضْ عَنِ الْجَاهِلِي (and ignore the ignorant). It means that he should, no doubt, forgo revenge against injustice, deal with his enemies having goodwill and concern for them, and softly explain the truth of the matter to them. But, in this process, there will be those ignorant diehards who would not still be impressed or affected by this highly gentle moral response. They would, in spite of that, display more of their ignorance and harshness. If so, he was advised not to be affected by their heart-rending comments and rustic challenges, offer no response in their terms, instead, stay away from and ignore them.
Tafsir Ibn Kathir has said that ‘to ignore’ also means that he should not repay evil with evil. It does not mean that he should stop giving good advice to them, for this would not be befitting in terms of the standing mission a prophet and messenger of Allah is charged with.
At this stage, according to an event reported in the Sahih of al-Bukhari from Sayyidna ` Abdullah ibn ` Abbas (رض) ، it was during the period of the Khilafah of Sayyidna ` Umar (رض) that ` Uyaiynah ibn Hisn came to Madinah and stayed there as a guest of his nephew, Hurr ibn Qays. Sayyidna Hurr (رض) was among the learned men of Madinah who used to attend the advisory council of Sayyidna ` Umar (رض) . ` Uyaiynah said to his nephew, Hurr ibn Qays, you are close to the Amir al-Mu’minin. Take an appointment for me to see him.’ Sayyidna Hurr ibn Qays requested Sayyidna ` Umar (رض) that his uncle, ` Uyaiynah wanted to meet him. He gave the permission.
But, once ` Uyaiynah was in the company of Sayyidna ` Umar al-Faruq (رض) ، he spoke to him in a manner that was uncivilized and contrary to facts while complaining that he neither gave them their full rights nor treated them with justice and equity. Sayyidna ` Umar (رض) was angry. Thereupon, Sayyidna Hurr ibn Qays submitted, ‘ya Amir al-Mu’minin, Allah Ta` ala has said: خُذِ الْعَفْوَ وَأْمُرْ بِالْعُرْفِ وَأَعْرِضْ عَنِ الْجَاهِلِينَ (Take to forbearance, and bid the Fair and ignore the ignorant – 199) and this person too is one of the ignorant ones.’ Hearing this verse, his anger subsided and he said nothing to him. This habit of Sayyidna ` Umar (رض) was well known. About him it was said: کَانَ وَ قَّافاً عندَ کِتابِ اللہِ عَسَّوَجَلَّ (He readily mellowed before the commandments of the Book of Allah, the Mighty, the Exalted).
This verse carries a comprehensive statement of noble traits of character. Some scholars have explained these briefly by saying that there are two kinds of people: (1) Those who are good in deeds and (2) those who are evil and unjust. This verse tells us to treat both kinds nobly. As for those who do good, accept what they offer as such. Do not investigate too much and do not be unnecessarily inquisitive. Do not demand good at its highest from them and accept what they come up with as sufficient. As for the evildoing, the instruction given is: Teach them to do what is good. Show them the way of righteousness. If they do not accept it and choose to stick to their straying and error and talk haughtily and aggressively, the appropriate course is to stay away from them and avoid responding to their ignorant comments. It is hoped that this approach may bring them round at some stage when they may realize their error.
وَاِمَّا يَنْزَغَنَّكَ مِنَ الشَّيْطٰنِ نَزْغٌ فَاسْتَعِذْ بِاللّٰهِ ۭاِنَّهٗ سَمِيْعٌ عَلِيْمٌ
In the second verse, it was said: وَإِمَّا يَنزَغَنَّكَ مِنَ الشَّيْطَانِ نَزْغٌ فَاسْتَعِذْ بِاللَّـهِ ۚ إِنَّهُ سَمِيعٌ عَلِيمٌ (And if you are stricken with a strike from the Shaitan, seek refuge with Allah – 200).
This verse too is really a complement of the subject taken up in the first verse which instructs that the error made by the unjust and the ignorant should be forgiven and the evil done by them should not be answered by counter evil. This is heavy duty. In fact, doing something like this is most irksome and hard on human temperament. Particu¬larly on occasions such as this, the Shaitan is there to coax someone very normal into anger and somehow gets his client all set to fight. Therefore, in the second verse, it has been suggested that in case emotions of anger seem to be flaring up on such an occasion where your patience is under test, one should promptly figure out that this instigation is coming from the Shaitan. It has a standard treatment – seek refuge with Allah.
It appears in Hadith that two men were quarreling before the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) and one of them was getting out of control in his fit of anger. He looked at him and said, ‘I know some words which, if this person were to say, his rage will go away.’ Then, he said, ‘here are the words: اعوذ باللہ من الشیطان الرجیم seek refuge with Allah from the Shaitan, the Accursed). When this person heard the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) reciting it, he immediately said it after him. Suddenly, his anger was all gone.
An Unusual Coincidence
At this stage, the great Tafsir Ibn Kathir has written about an unusual coincidence. He says that there are three verses in the entire Qur’an that appear as an embodiment of high moral teaching – and all three of them conclude with the need to seek refuge from the Shaitan. One of these is this very verse of Surah al-A` raf we are talking about. The second one is the following verse of Surah al-Mu’minun:
ادْفَعْ بِالَّتِي هِيَ أَحْسَنُ السَّيِّئَةَ ۚ نَحْنُ أَعْلَمُ بِمَا يَصِفُونَ ﴿96﴾ وَقُل رَّبِّ أَعُوذُ بِكَ مِنْ هَمَزَاتِ الشَّيَاطِينِ ﴿97﴾ وَأَعُوذُ بِكَ رَبِّ أَن يَحْضُرُونِ ﴿98﴾
“Repel the evil with what is good. We know best what they keep saying and you say: ‘0 my Lord, I seek refuge with You against the urgings of the Shaitans, and 0 my Lord, I seek refuge with You from that they be with me – 23:96:98.”
The third verse appears in Surah Ha Mim as-Sajdah (also referred to as Surah Fussilat):
وَلَا تَسْتَوِي الْحَسَنَةُ وَلَا السَّيِّئَةُ ۚ ادْفَعْ بِالَّتِي هِيَ أَحْسَنُ فَإِذَا الَّذِي بَيْنَكَ وَبَيْنَهُ عَدَاوَةٌ كَأَنَّهُ وَلِيٌّ حَمِيمٌ ﴿34﴾ وَمَا يُلَقَّاهَا إِلَّا الَّذِينَ صَبَرُوا وَمَا يُلَقَّاهَا إِلَّا ذُو حَظٍّ عَظِيمٍ ﴿35﴾ وَإِمَّا يَنزَغَنَّكَ مِنَ الشَّيْطَانِ نَزْغٌ فَاسْتَعِذْ بِاللَّـهِ ۖ إِنَّهُ هُوَ السَّمِيعُ الْعَلِيمُ ﴿36﴾
(And good and bad deeds are not equal. Repel with that which is better, whereupon he – between whom and you there was enmity – will be as if a fast friend. [ 34] And this quality is granted to none but those who observe patience, and this quality is granted to none but he who is endowed with a great fortune. [ 35] And if you are stricken with a strike from the Shaitan, then, seek refuge with Allah. Surely, He is the All-Hearing, the All-Knowing. [ 36] – 41:34-36)
In these three verses, instruction has been given to forgo and forgive people who incite anger, to return evil with good and, along with it, to seek refuge from the Shaitan. This tells us that the Shaitan takes special interest in human quarrels. Give them any opportunity where a quarrel is on, the Shaitans converge on it as their favorite hunting ground. No matter how sedate and forbearing someone happens to be, they would still incite him into anger and try to make them cross the limits.
There is a treatment for it. When a person sees his anger getting out of control, he should know that Shaitan is winning against his better self. He should then turn to Allah Ta` ala and seek refuge with Him. This makes noble traits of character flourish at their best. Therefore, additional stress has been laid on the need to seek the protection of Allah against the Shaitan in the third (201) and fourth (202) verses as well.
وَاِذَا لَمْ تَاْتِهِمْ بِاٰيَةٍ قَالُوْا لَوْلَا اجْتَبَيْتَهَا ۭقُلْ اِنَّمَآ اَتَّبِعُ مَا يُوْحٰٓى اِلَيَّ مِنْ رَّبِّيْ
Mentioned in the verses cited above is the proof that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) the true Messenger of Allah. Also answered there are doubts raised by his antagonists. Then, as a corollary, some religious injunctions have been taken up.
To prove that they are Messengers of Allah, all prophets, may peace be upon them all, are given miracles. It was in consonance with it that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) the foremost among prophets, was blessed with so many miracles which exceed the number of those given to past prophets and which are clear too.
The miracles of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) as proved from the Qur’an, and authentic Hadith reports, are fairly numerous. Muslim religious scholars have written separate books about them. ` Allamah Jalalud-Din as-Suyuti’s book, al-Khasais a1-Kubra, in two volumes, is a well-known work on this subject.
But, despite the manifestation of so many miracles, his opponents stuck to their unreasonable demands asking for ever-new miracles of their choice. This has also been mentioned earlier in this very Surah.
The first of the two verses cited above provides an answer to their demand as a matter of principle. To put it briefly, the miracle of a prophet is a testimony and proof of his mission as a Messenger of Allah. Take the example of the claim of a plaintiff that stands proved by some trustworthy evidence. The other party has not challenged it in any way. If so, no court in the world would give this party the right to demand from the plaintiff that it would accept the claim only when he produces its evidence from a number of particularly specified people. And that the said party would, without challenging the present evidence, not accept it. Therefore, after having seen so many manifest miracles, the antagonists had no right to say that they would take him to be a Messenger of Allah only if he were to show their custom-ordered miracles. This is nothing but a hostile demand that no court of justice would accept as valid.
So, in the first verse (203), it was said when he does not show them the miracle specified by them, they use it as a pretext to deny that he was a Messenger of Allah. Had he been one, he would have shown them the miracle of their choice! The Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) has been asked to tell them that his mission does not call for the showing of miracles on his own. Instead, his basic mission was to follow the injunctions sent to him by his Lord through the medium of Wahy (revelation) and it included the task of their preaching as well. Therefore, he was busy doing what he was assigned to do. As for the verifica¬tion of his status as a Messenger of Allah, the miracles already mani¬fested before them were more than enough for that purpose. Now that they have already seen those, the demand for some particular miracle is nothing but an exercise in hostility that is not worth noticing.
Then, out of the miracles shown, the Qur’an by itself is a great miracle. It has challenged the whole world to come up with a small Surah the like of it and it has failed to do so. This, then, is an open sign that the Qur’an is no human word, instead, is the inimitable Word of Allah, the most exalted.
For this reason, it was said: هَـٰذَا بَصَائِرُ مِن رَّبِّكُمْ (This is (a Book of) insights from your Lord). It means that this Qur’an has come from your Lord as a compendium of many proofs and miracles. Whoever deliberates into it, even summarily, could not part with it without believing that it was nothing but the Word of Allah, the most exalted, and that nothing created has anything to do with it. After that, it was said: وَهُدًى وَرَحْمَةٌ لِّقَوْمٍ يُؤْمِنُونَ (and a guidance and mercy for a people who believe). It means that, no doubt, this Qur’an is a proof of what is true for the whole world, but it is an escort to the purpose of life and a medium of deserving the mercy of Allah Ta` ala only for those who believe in it.
وَاِذَا قُرِئَ الْقُرْاٰنُ فَاسْتَمِعُوْا لَهٗ وَاَنْصِتُوْا لَعَلَّكُمْ تُرْحَمُوْنَ
In the second verse (204), we have been told that the Holy Qur’an has come as mercy for the believers. But, in order to benefit from this mercy, there are some conditions and rules of conduct. These have been delineated in the form of a general address as: وَإِذَا قُرِئَ الْقُرْآنُ فَاسْتَمِعُوا لَهُ وَأَنصِتُوا (And when the Qur’an is recited, listen to it and be silent).
There are different reports about the background of these verses and about whether this injunction has appeared about the recitation of the Qur’an in Salah, or in Khutbah, or relates to the recitation of the Qur’an in an absolute sense, be it in Salah or Khutbah or in some other condition. But, according to the majority of commentators, the correct position is that the way the words of the verse are general, so the rule laid down therein too is generally applicable to all conditions – except some particular occasions.
Therefore, the followers of Hanafi School have taken this verse to prove that the persons offering their prayer behind an Imam (i.e. the muqtadis) should not recite. Even Muslim jurists who have directed the muqtadis to recite Alfatihah behind the Imam, they too, having kept this verse in view have suggested that a muqtadi should recite only in an interval when the Imam is silent. However, this is not the appropriate occasion to take up this debate. Those interested may refer to standard works, brief or detailed, written by scholars on the issue.
The main subject of the verse is not but that the people for whom the Qur’an has been declared to be mercy should realize the condition that they have to recognize the etiquette and respect aligned with the Qur’an and observe it literally in practice. Then, the cardinal etiquette of the Qur’an is that listeners should lend their ears to it when recited and remain silent.
The sense of lending ears to it not only includes listening to it but also obeying it and making the effort of acting in accordance with its injunctions. (Maharl and Qurtubi) Then, by saying: لَعَلَّكُمْ تُرْحَمُونَ (so that you may be blessed) at the end of the verse, a clear hint is given that the mercy of Qur’an depends on the observance of rules of etiquette mentioned above.
Some important rules relating to listening and remaining silent when Qur’an is being recited
In contrast with what has been said above, it is obvious that whoever flouts these rules and shows disrespect to the Qur’an will deserve Divine wrath, not mercy.
As for listening to the recitation of the Qur’an in the Salah and remaining silent therein, Muslims generally know about it – though, they do fall short in practice. Some of them would not even be aware of the Surah recited by the Imam. For such people, it is imperative that they should realize the greatness of the Qur’an, and listen to it atten¬tively. This Islamic legal norm applies to the Khutbah of Jumu’ah etc. In addition to this verse, the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) has particu¬larly said about the Khutbah:
اَذا خرجَ الاِمَام فَلَا صلٰوۃ وَ لَا کَلَام
When the Imam comes out (for Khutbah), then, there is no Surah and no conversation.
And it also appears in a Hadith that no one should say anything to anyone during Khutbah, not even a verbal advice is allowed to be given to another person to keep silence (if it has to be done, making a sign by hand should be enough). The objective is to emphasize that, during the Khutbah, no conversation of any kind, tasbih, durud or Salah or acts of similar nature are permissible.
Muslim jurists have said that the rule which applies to the Khutbah of Jumu’ah applies to the Khutbah of the two ` Eid prayers and that of Nikah (marriage) for, at that time, listening to it and remaining silent is obligatory (wajib).
However, in case someone is reciting on his own under usual condi¬tions other than Salah and Khutbah, the question arises: Will others be required to be silent and listen to it? Whether or not would it be oblig¬atory (wajib) on them? The positions taken by Muslim jurists in this matter differ. Some consider listening and remaining silent in this condition too as wajib and doing against it a sin. It is for this reason that they have ruled that it is not permissible for anyone to recite the Qur’an in a loud voice at places where people are busy doing their chores or are resting. They have also said that anyone who recites the Qur’an in a loud voice in such surroundings shall be a sinner. This is as it appears in Khulasatu 1-Fatawa and other juristic works.
But, some other jurists have distinguished different situations from one another by saying that listening attentively is wajib only on occasions where the Qur’an is being recited for the express purpose of being listened to – such as, in Salah and Khutbah etc. And should it be that someone is reciting on his own, or some people are doing their own recitation at one place, then, it is not wajib to listen and be silent. The reason is that it stands proved on the authority of sound Ahadith that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) used to recite the Qur’an in his nightly prayers in a raised voice. At that time, his blessed wives would be sleeping. At times, his voice could also be heard from outside his roomette.
There is a Hadith in al-Bukhari and Muslim. It says that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) made a stop on his journey and when morning came he said, ‘I recognized my Ash’arite companions by the voices of their recitation of Qur’an during the darkness of the night and was able to pinpoint the direction and location of their tents – though, I had no idea during the day as to where they stay.
This event shows that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) never asked these Asharite companions as to why they were reciting the Qur’an in a loud voice, nor did he tell those sleeping that they all had to get up and listen to the Qur’an when it was being recited.
As based on narratives such as these, jurists have given some leeway in the case of recitation outside Salah. But, they all consider it better and preferable to listen and be silent when the sound of the recitation of the Qur’an comes from somewhere – even if it is outside the Salah. For this reason, in places where people are resting or working, it is not appropriate to recite the Qur’an in a loud voice.
This exposes the error of people who turn their radios to full volume at the time some program of recitation from the Qur’an comes on the air, particularly at places and gatherings where the crowd would not listen to it attentively. Similarly, the practice of relaying the recitation of the Qur’an from the public address systems of mosques late at night, in a manner that the sound goes out and disturbs the sleep of the sleeping or the work of the working, is not correct.
` Allamah ibn al-Humam has written that, at the time the Imam in Salah, or the Khatib in Khutbah, is reciting something about the Jannah or Jahannam, then, at that time, it is not permissible even to pray for Jannah or seek refuge from Jahannam. The reason is that, according to this verse, the promise of mercy from Allah Ta` ala is for the person who remains silent when the Qur’an is being recited – and whoever does not remain silent, to him the promise does not apply.
Yes, if one supplicates voicelessly after the recitation of such verses during his na f Z prayers, it is an act proved by Sunnah, and is worthy of reward as well. (Mazhari)
وَاذْكُرْ رَّبَّكَ فِيْ نَفْسِكَ تَضَرُّعًا وَّخِيْفَةً وَّدُوْنَ الْجَــهْرِ مِنَ الْقَوْلِ بِالْغُدُوِّ وَالْاٰصَالِ
That the Holy Qur’an should be listened to and that due etiquette should be observed when doing so was the subject in previous verses. Described in the present two verses, as held by the majority of commentators, is the injunction to remember Allah, in an absolute sense, as well as its attending etiquette – which includes the recitation of the Qur’an. However, according to Sayyidna ` Abdullah ibn ` Abbas (رض) the word: ذِکر (dhikr: remembrance) as it appears in this verse means the Qur’an, and the rules of etiquette enunciated therein are also related to its recitation. But, this does not make much of a difference because according to the consensus of all, other modes of remem¬brance (adhkar: plural of dhikr), in addition to the Qur’an, are governed by the same injunction and the same rules of etiquette.
In short, in this verse, human beings have been commanded to remember Allah and told when to do it and how to do it.
Rules of Voiced and Voiceless Remembrance [ Dhikr ]
The first rule of etiquette relates to the doing of Dhikr in a lowered or loud voice. The Holy Qur’an has given two choices about that in this verse. It can be made secretly and voicelessly and it can be made openly and loudly. About the voiceless Dhikr, it was said: وَاذْكُر رَّبَّكَ فِي نَفْسِكَ which has been translated here literally as ‘and remember your Lord in yourself (or, in your heart). This too would, take two forms: (1) That one does not move his tongue and simply thinks of Allah and His attributes in his heart that is known as al-dhikr-al-khafiyy (Dhikr of the heart) or tafakkur (pondering). (2) That one brings his tongue in alignment with what is happening in the deep recesses of his heart, lowers his voice and renders the letters carrying Divine names. The most preferred form of doing it is to first understand the sense of what is being said. Then, in synchronization with it, let him do two things simultaneously: Be fully conscious of its presence in his heart with his span of attention riveted to it and then, verbalize it too. The reason is that this is a form in which the tongue also joins in the Dhikr along with the heart. And if someone were to remain devoted to the thought within his heart alone, without uttering any word from his tongue, that too is a reward-worthy act in its own place. However, the lowest degree of it would be uttering the words of Dhikr but the heart stays denuded with it, even heedless towards it. About a Dhikr like that, the great sage, Rumi said:
بر زبان تسبیح و در دل گا ؤخَر ایں چنییں تسبیح کے دارد اثر
On the tongue, glory to God، Cow and donkey in the heart!
What remembrance is it? How effective will it be?
What sage Rumi means is that Dhikr made through a heedless heart brings no vestiges and blessings of the genuine act of Dhikr. It does not rule out the reward and benefit that may issue forth from what may be a bland verbal Dhikr because there are occasions when this very verbal Dhikr becomes the channel, source and cause of the Dhikr of the heart. The constant utterance of the tongue starts affecting the heart as well. In case that does not materialize, no less is the satisfaction that there is at least one part of the body busy with the Dhikr of Allah. If so, that too is not devoid of its benefits and rewards. Therefore, people who fail to experience peace, attention and sense of presence in their Dhikr and Tasbih (act of remembrance and glorification of Allah) should not abandon it as something useless. They should, rather, continue with it and keep trying to attain the required degree of attention.
The second method of Dhikr has been given within this verse by saying: وَدُونَ الْجَهْرِ مِنَ الْقَوْلِ (and without speaking loudly). It means that it has to be in a lowered voice as compared to a raised voice. In other words, the person who is engaged in the Dhikr of Allah does have the option of doing a voiced Dhikr but its etiquette demands that one should not do it too loudly reaching the outer limits of shouting and screaming. Doing it in an average voice with due regard for the rever¬ence-worthy nature of the activity is better. The fact is that doing the Dhikr of Allah and the recitation of the Qur’an very loudly is a sign of disrespect one has in his heart for the addressee. Is it not that one cannot naturally speak up in a loud voice before someone he reveres by heart? Therefore, when the usual Dhikr of Allah or the recitation of the Qur’an is made vocally, one has to be careful not to let the voice be raised any more than necessary.
To sum up, three methods of the Dhikr of Allah and the recitation of the Qur’an come out of this verse. (1) Concentrate on the Dhikr of the heart only, that is, consider it sufficient to imagine and deliberate on the meanings of the Qur’an, and Dhikr, while keeping the tongue totally unmoved. (2) Also move the tongue along with the Dhikr of the heart, without raising the voice to the level of being heard by others. Both these methods are included under the Divine command of: وَاذْكُر رَّبَّكَ فِي نَفْسِكَ (And remember your Lord in yourself). (3) The third method of Dhikr is that, alongwith attention by heart, there is a movement of tongue with voice, but it should not be raised any higher than neces¬sary, in fact, it should be limited to the average level. This method has been proposed in the Qur’anic statement: وَدُونَ الْجَهْرِ مِنَ الْقَوْلِ (and without speaking loudly). Another verse of the Qur’an has explained it further by saying: وَلَا تَجْهَرْ بِصَلَاتِكَ وَلَا تُخَافِتْ بِهَا وَابْتَغِ بَيْنَ ذَٰلِكَ سَبِيلًا . It commands the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) that he should not recite the Qur’an in a voice rising too high nor in a voice lowered too much. Instead, he should maintain a middle level between the two – [ 17:110].
This was the instruction given by the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) to Sayyidna Abu Bakr and Sayyidna ` Umar (رض) about the recitation of the Qur’an in Sa1ah.
According to an authentic Hadith, once the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) came out of the house late at night. When he reached the house of Sayyidna Abu Bakr (رض) he saw him busy with Salah but he was reciting in a lowered voice. Then he reached the house of Sayyidna ` Umar, (رض) عنہ and saw that he was reciting in a raised voice. When these two companions came to the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) in the morning, he said to Sayyidna Abu Bakr ‘when I went to you last night, I noticed that you were reciting in a lowered voice.’ Sayy¬idna Abu Bakr submitted, ‘ya rasiiallah, the One I was reciting for has heard it. That is sufficient.’ Similarly, he said to Sayyidna ` Umar, ‘you were reciting in a raised voice.’ He submitted, ‘By raising my voice in the recitation, I intended to drive away sleep and Shaitan both.’ Giving his verdict, the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) instructed Sayyidna Abu Bakr (رض) عنہ to raise his voice a little bit and asked Sayyidna ` Umar (رض) to somewhat lower it. (Abu Dwud)
According to a report in Tirmidhi, some Companions asked Sayy¬idah ` A’ishah (رض) about the recitation of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) whether he did it in a raised voice or a lowered voice. She said, ‘at times he would do it loudly and at others, in a lowered voice. He recited both ways.’
Some early elders have favored reciting loudly during nafl Salah at night and in recitations outside the Salah, while some others have preferred reciting softly in a lowered voice. Therefore, Imam Abu Hanifah (رح) has said that the person reciting has the choice of reciting either way. However, it is unanimously agreed that reciting loudly has some conditions to it. Firstly, there should be no apprehension of showing off in doing so. Secondly, the voice of the person reciting should not cause any inconvenience or pain to others. For example, it should not interfere in the Salah or recitation being made by others, or in their work, or rest. Under such eventualities, reciting in a low voice is more meritorious as unanimously held by all.
Then, the rule that applies to the recitation of the Qur’an also applies to other Adhkar and Tasbihat in that these could be made in a voice loud or low. It is permissible to do it either way – subject to the condition that the voice should not be so loud as to be against the norms of humbleness of heart and the formal etiquette of spiritual devotion. In addition to that, the voice of the person so engaged in remembering Allah and glorifying Him should cause no disruption in the activities of people working or resting.
As to what is more meritorious – loud or low – it depends on who is doing it and under what conditions. The verdict differs. For some, loud is better, for others, low. Then, there are times when loud is better and there are other times when keeping it low or voiceless is beneficial. (Tafslr Mazhari, Ruh al-Bayan etc.)
The second rule of etiquette mentioned in the verse under discus¬sion requires that Tilawah and Dhikr should be made humbly which is the outcome of one’s realization that Allah Ta` ala is great and most exalted and that one keeps the meaning and sense of what he or she is saying in sight.
The third rule of etiquette comes out from the word: خُفْيَةً (khifah: fear) in this very verse (205). Here, we have been told that one should be in a state of awe and fear while reciting or making Dhikr. As for fear, it means the fear of not being able to do justice to the great task of worshipping Allah and recognizing His greatness – perhaps, we may fall short or do something contrary to His reverence due on us. In addi¬tion to that, we have to be actively conscious of our sins and be fearful of His punishment, fearful of what would happen to us in the end for we do not know what and how it will be. So then, Dhikr and Tilawah have to be done in the manner of a person who has been subdued by an aura of awe and fear.
These rules have also appeared in an earlier verse of this very Surah al-A’raf where they relate to prayer: ادْعُوا رَبَّكُمْ تَضَرُّعًا وَخُفْيَةً (Supplicate to your Lord humbly and secretly – 7:55). Here, instead of خُفْيَةً (kh ‘fah: fear), the word: خُفْيَةً (khufyah: secretly) has been used which means saying it softly in a low voice – as though, it is also a rule of etiquette that Dhikr and Tilawah should be done softly in a lowered voice. But, this verse makes it clear at the same time that doing voiced Dhikr is not prohibited, however, it is subject to the condition that one does not raise his voice more than necessary, definitely not so high as would cause the state of fear and humbleness to disappear.
Given towards the end of the verse are the timings of Dhikr and Tilawah – that it should be done in the mornings and evenings. It could also mean that one should be busy with the remembrance of Allah at least twice a day in the morning and the evening. And it is also possible that by saying mornings and evenings, the reference is to all timings of the day and night on the analogy of saying East and West and thereby meaning the whole world. If so, the verse would mean that one must remain committed to Dhikr and Tilawah always, under all conditions. Sayyidah ` A’ishah (رض) says that the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) was devoted to the remembrance of Allah at all times and under all conditions.
At the end of the verse, it was said: وَلَا تَكُن مِّنَ الْغَافِلِين is (and do not be among the heedless) which means that abandoning the remembrance of Allah and joining the heedless is a great loss.
The last verse (206) depicts the particular state and style of those close to Allah so that others may learn their lesson from it. It is said that those who are close to Allah Ta` ala show no arrogance against worshipping Him. Being ‘with’ Allah Ta` ala means being among those approved of and accepted by Him. This includes all angels and all blessed prophets and the most righteous men and women of the Muslim community. As for the sense of arrogance in this context, it means that they do not assume airs and do not fall short in their acts of worship on the false assumption of being big and special. Instead of doing anything of that sort, they take themselves to be weak and needy before Allah and keep devoting themselves to His remembrance, worship and glorification showing their ultimate humility by pros-trating before their Lord in sajdah.
From here, we also learn that people who are blessed with the ability to engage in perpetual worship and remembrance of Allah are blessed with the sign that they are ` with’ Allah all the time and fortu¬nate to have His company.
اِنَّ الَّذِيْنَ عِنْدَ رَبِّكَ لَا يَسْتَكْبِرُوْنَ عَنْ عِبَادَتِهٖ وَيُسَبِّحُوْنَهٗ وَلَهٗ يَسْجُدُوْنَ
Sajdah: Some merits and rules
Sajdah (prostration) as a unit of the Islamic ` Ibadah of Salahhas been mentioned here exclusively since it occupies a distinct place among the rest of the units of Salah.
It appears in Sahih Muslim that a person asked Sayyidaa Thawban (رض) ‘tell me about something I should do that will take me to Paradise.’ Sayyidna Thawban remained silent. He repeated the question. He still remained silent. When he came up with the question the third time, he said, ‘I had asked the same question from the Holy Prophet (رض) and he had ordered me to make sajdah repeatedly because for every sajdah you do, Allah Ta` ala increases a rank and forgives a sin.’ This person says that following his meeting with Sayyidna Thawban (رض) he met Sayyidna Abu al-Darda’ (رض) . He put the same question to him and he was given the same answer.
Again in Sahih Muslim, but on the authority of Sayyidna Abu Hurairah (رض) ، it has been reported that the Holy Prophet (رض) said, ‘a servant of Allah is closest to his Lord when in sajdah.
Therefore, when you are in a state of sajdah, pray most ardently, for it is strongly hoped that it will be answered. 1′
- It should be borne in mind that supplication in sajdah should be in nafl salah and using the Arabic prayers either mentioned in the Holy Qur’an or in the sunnah of the Holy Prophet . However, in a sajdah meant for supplication only, one can pray in whatever language he wishes (Muhammad Taqi Usmani)
Let us bear in mind that Sajdah, by itself, is not a recognized act of ` Ibadah. Therefore, according to Imam Abu Hanifah, prostrating in Sajdah abundantly means that one should offer nafl Salah abundantly. An increased number of nafl Salah would naturally result in an increased number of Sajdahs.
But, if a person were to go in Sajdah alone and supplicate after that, it really does not matter. As for the instruction to supplicate in Sajdah, it is particular to Nafl Salats. It is not mandatory.
Surah al-A` raf ends here. Its last verse is an Ayah of Sajdah (requiring the person reciting and the person listening to prostrate in Sajdah). According to a report from Sayyidna Abu Hurairah al appearing in Sahih Muslim, the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم) said, ` when a son of Adam recites a verse of Sajdah and then prostrates in Sajdah, the Shaitan runs crying. He says: Alas, man was asked to prostrate in Sajdah and when he obeyed, Paradise became his home, and I was asked to prostrate in Sajdah and when I disobeyed, Hell became my home.’
[From Ma’ariful Quran English by Mufti Taqi Uthmani]
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