Quran Tafsir Ibn Kathir (English)

Alama Imad ud Din Ibn Kathir

Tafsir ibn Kathir, is a classic Sunni Islam Tafsir (commentary of the Qur'an) by Imad ud Din Ibn Kathir. It is considered to be a summary of the earlier Tafsir al-Tabari. It is popular because it uses Hadith to explain each verse and chapter of the Qur'an…'Imad Ad-Din, Isma'il bin 'Umar bin Kathir, was born in 1301 in Busra, Syria  and was taught by Ibn Taymiyya, Al-Mizzi, Ibn Al Firkah, ‘Isa bin Al-Mutim, Ahmed bin Abi-Talib, Ibn Al-Hajjar, Baha Ad-Din Al-Qasim bin Muzaffar bin ‘Asakir, Ibn Ash-Shirazi, Ishaq bin Yahya Al-Ammuddi, Zahriyyah Shaykh, and Muhammad bin Zarrad.

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Revelation of Mystery

(Kashf Al Mahjub)

Ali Hujwiri

Translated by

Lt Col (R) Muhammad Ashraf Javed

 


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Surah Al Anbiyah

Recitation: Sa'ad Al Ghamdi

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Surah Al-Anbiya

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 Tafsir Of Ayah

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The Virtues of Surat Al-Anbiya'

Al-Bukhari recorded that Abdur-Rahman bin Yazid said that Abdullah said,

"Banu Isra'il, Al-Kahf, Maryam, Ta Ha and Al-Anbiya' - they are among the earliest and most beautiful Surahs and they are my treasure.''

 

بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَـٰنِ الرَّحِيمِ

In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.

1.

 اقْتَرَبَ لِلنَّاسِ حِسَـبُهُمْ وَهُمْ فِى غَفْلَةٍ مُّعْرِضُونَ

Draws near for mankind their reckoning, while they turn away in heedlessness.

2.

 مَا يَأْتِيهِمْ مِّن ذِكْرٍ مِّن رَّبِّهِمْ مُّحْدَثٍ إِلاَّ اسْتَمَعُوهُ وَهُمْ يَلْعَبُونَ

Comes not unto them an admonition from their Lord as a recent revelation but they listen to it while they play.

3.

 لاَهِيَةً قُلُوبُهُمْ

With their hearts occupied.

وَأَسَرُّواْ النَّجْوَى الَّذِينَ ظَلَمُواْ هَلْ هَـذَآ إِلاَّ بَشَرٌ مِّثْلُكُمْ أَفَتَأْتُونَ السِّحْرَ وَأَنتُمْ تُبْصِرُونَ

Those who do wrong, conceal their private counsels, (saying): "Is this more than a human being like you! Will you submit to magic while you see it!''

4.

قَالَ رَبِّى يَعْلَمُ الْقَوْلَ فِى السَّمَآءِ وَالاٌّرْضِ وَهُوَ السَّمِيعُ الْعَلِيمُ

He said: "My Lord knows what is said in the heavens and on earth. And He is the All-Hearer, the All-Knower.''

5.

بَلْ قَالُواْ أَضْغَـثُ أَحْلاَمٍ

Nay, they say: "These are mixed up false dreams!

بَلِ افْتَرَاهُ بَلْ هُوَ شَاعِرٌ فَلْيَأْتِنَا بِـَايَةٍ كَمَآ أُرْسِلَ الاٌّوَّلُونَ

Nay, he has invented it! -- Nay, he is a poet! Let him then bring us an Ayah like the ones that were sent before!''

6.

مَآ ءَامَنَتْ قَبْلَهُمْ مِّن قَرْيَةٍ أَهْلَكْنَـهَآ أَفَهُمْ يُؤْمِنُونَ 

Not one of the towns of those which We destroyed, believed before them; will they then believe.  

Next 7-9   

The Hour is at hand but People are heedless

Allah says:

اقْتَرَبَ لِلنَّاسِ حِسَابُهُمْ وَهُمْ فِي غَفْلَةٍ مَّعْرِضُونَ ﴿١

Draws near for mankind their reckoning, while they turn away in heedlessness.

This is a warning from Allah of the approach of the Hour, and that people are heedless of it, i.e., they are not working for it or preparing for it.

An-Nasa'i recorded that Abu Sa`id reported from the Prophet:

 فِي غَفْلَةٍ مَّعْرِضُونَ   (while they turn away in heedlessness), he said, فِي الدُّنْيَا (in this world).Allah says:

أَتَى أَمْرُ اللَّهِ فَلاَ تَسْتَعْجِلُوهُ

The Event ordained by Allah will come to pass, so seek not to hasten it. (16:1)

اقْتَرَبَتِ السَّاعَةُ وَانشَقَّ الْقَمَرُ  - وَإِن يَرَوْاْ ءَايَةً يُعْرِضُواْ

The Hour has drawn near, and the moon has been cleft asunder. And if they see a sign, they turn away. (54:1-2)

Then Allah states that they do not listen to the revelation (Wahy) that He sends down to His Messenger, which is addressed to the Quraysh and all disbelievers like them.

مَا يَأْتِيهِم مِّن ذِكْرٍ مَّن رَّبِّهِم مُّحْدَثٍ ...

Comes not unto them an admonition from their Lord as a recent revelation,

meaning, newly-revealed,

... إِلَّا اسْتَمَعُوهُ وَهُمْ يَلْعَبُونَ ﴿٢﴾

but they listen to it while they play.

لَاهِيَةً قُلُوبُهُمْ ...

With their hearts occupied.

This is like what Ibn Abbas said,

"Why do you ask the People of the Book about what they have, which has been altered and distorted, and they have added things and taken things away, when your Book is the most recently revealed from Allah, and you read it pure and unadulterated''

Al-Bukhari recorded something similar to this.

... وَأَسَرُّواْ النَّجْوَى الَّذِينَ ظَلَمُواْ ...

Those who do wrong, conceal their private counsels,

meaning, what they say to one another in secret.

... هَلْ هَذَا إِلَّا بَشَرٌ مِّثْلُكُمْ ...

Is this more than a human being like you!

meaning, the Messenger of Allah. They did not believe that he could be a Prophet because he was a human being like them, so how could he have been singled out to receive revelation, and not them! They said:

... أَفَتَأْتُونَ السِّحْرَ وَأَنتُمْ تُبْصِرُونَ ﴿٣﴾

Will you submit to magic while you see it!

meaning, will you follow him and be like one who submits to magic when he knows that it is magic!

Allah said in response to their fabrications and lies:

قَالَ رَبِّي يَعْلَمُ الْقَوْلَ فِي السَّمَاء وَالأَرْضِ ...

He said: "My Lord knows what is said in the heavens and on earth...''

Nothing at all is hidden from the One Who knows that, and He is the One Who reveals this Qur'an which contains news of the earliest and last generations. No one can produce the like of this except the One Who knows all the secrets of the heavens and the earth.

... وَهُوَ السَّمِيعُ الْعَلِيمُ ﴿٤﴾

And He is the All-Hearer, the All-Knower.

means, He hears all that they say and He knows all their circumstances. This is a warning and a threat to them.

The Disbelievers' Ideas about the Qur'an and the Messenger; their demand for a Sign and the Refutation of that:

Allah says:

بَلْ قَالُواْ أَضْغَاثُ أَحْلاَمٍ بَلِ افْتَرَاهُ بَلْ هُوَ شَاعِرٌ...

Nay, they say: "These are mixed up false dreams!Nay, he has invented it! -- Nay, he is a poet!

Here Allah tells us of the stubbornness and heresy of the disbelievers, and the various things they said about the Qur'an, and how they were confused and misguided about it. Sometimes they described it as magic, and sometimes they described it as poetry, or mixed up false dreams, or a fabrication.

As Allah says:

انْظُرْ كَيْفَ ضَرَبُواْ لَكَ الاٌّمْثَالَ فَضَلُّواْ فَلاَ يَسْتَطِيعْونَ سَبِيلاً

See what examples they have put forward for you. So they have gone astray, and never can they find a way. (17:48)

... فَلْيَأْتِنَا بِآيَةٍ كَمَا أُرْسِلَ الأَوَّلُونَ ﴿٥﴾

Let him then bring us an Ayah like the ones that were sent before!

They were referring to the she-camel of Salih, and the signs of Musa and `Isa.

And Allah says,

وَمَا مَنَعَنَآ أَن نُّرْسِلَ بِالاٌّيَـتِ إِلاَّ أَن كَذَّبَ بِهَا الاٌّوَّلُونَ

And nothing stops Us from sending the Ayat but that the people of old denied them. (17:59)

So Allah said here:

مَا آمَنَتْ قَبْلَهُم مِّن قَرْيَةٍ أَهْلَكْنَاهَا أَفَهُمْ يُؤْمِنُونَ ﴿٦

Not one of the towns of those which We destroyed, believed before them; will they then believe!

None of the peoples to whom Messengers were sent were given a sign at the hands of their Prophet and believed. On the contrary, they disbelieved and We destroyed them as a result. Would these people believe in a sign if they saw it! Not at all!

In fact,

إِنَّ الَّذِينَ حَقَّتْ عَلَيْهِمْ كَلِمَةُ رَبِّكَ لاَ يُؤْمِنُونَ  - وَلَوْ جَآءَتْهُمْ كُلُّ ءايَةٍ حَتَّى يَرَوُاْ الْعَذَابَ الاٌّلِيمَ

Truly, those, against whom the Word of your Lord has been justified, will not believe. Even if every sign should come to them, until they see the painful torment. (10:96-97)

Indeed, they witnessed clear signs and definitive proof at the hands of the Messenger of Allah, signs which were far clearer and more overwhelming than any that had been witnessed in the case of any other Prophet, may the blessings and peace of Allah be upon them all.

7.

Previous 1-6

وَمَآ أَرْسَلْنَا قَبْلَكَ إِلاَّ رِجَالاً نُّوحِى إِلَيْهِمْ فَاسْئَلُواْ أَهْلَ الذِّكْرِ إِن كُنتُمْ لاَ تَعْلَمُونَ

And We sent not before you but men to whom We revealed. So ask the people of the Reminder if you do not know.

8.

 وَمَا جَعَلْنَـهُمْ جَسَداً لاَّ يَأْكُلُونَ الطَّعَامَ وَمَا كَانُواْ خَـلِدِينَ

And We did not place them in bodies that did not eat food, nor were they immortals.

9.

 ثُمَّ صَدَقْنَـهُمُ الْوَعْدَ فَأَنجَيْنَـهُمْ وَمَن نَّشَآءُ وَأَهْلَكْنَا الْمُسْرفِينَ

Then We fulfilled to them the promise. So We saved them and those whom We willed, but We destroyed Al-Musrifin.    

Next 10-15   

The Messengers are no more than Human Beings

Here Allah refutes those who denied that human Messengers could be sent:

وَمَا أَرْسَلْنَا قَبْلَكَ إِلاَّ رِجَالاً نُّوحِي إِلَيْهِمْ ...

And We sent not before you but men to whom We revealed.

meaning, all the Messengers who came before you were men, human beings. There were no angels among them.

This is like the Ayat:

وَمَآ أَرْسَلْنَا مِن قَبْلِكَ إِلاَّ رِجَالاً نُّوحِى إِلَيْهِمْ مِّنْ أَهْلِ الْقُرَى

And We sent not before you any but men unto whom We revealed, from among the people of townships. (12:109)

قُلْ مَا كُنتُ بِدْعاً مِّنَ الرُّسُلِ

Say: "I am not a new thing among the Messengers... (46:9)

Allah tells us that the previous nations denied that and said:

أَبَشَرٌ يَهْدُونَنَا

"Shall mere men guide us!'' (64:6)

So Allah says here:

... فَاسْأَلُواْ أَهْلَ الذِّكْرِ إِن كُنتُمْ لاَ تَعْلَمُونَ ﴿٧﴾

So ask the people of the Reminder if you do not know.

meaning, ask the people of knowledge among the nations such as the Jews and Christians and other groups: `were the Messengers who came to you human beings or angels!' Indeed they were human beings.

This is a part of the perfect blessing of Allah towards His creation: He sent to them Messengers from among themselves so that they could receive the Message from them and learn from them.

وَمَا  جَعَلْنَاهُمْ جَسَدًا لَّا يَأْكُلُونَ الطَّعَامَ ...

And We did not place them in bodies that did not eat food...

meaning, rather they had bodies that ate food, as Allah says:

وَمَآ أَرْسَلْنَا قَبْلَكَ مِنَ الْمُرْسَلِينَ إِلاَّ إِنَّهُمْ لَيَأْكُلُونَ الطَّعَامَ وَيَمْشُونَ فِى الاٌّسْوَاقِ

And We never sent before you any of the Messengers but verily, they ate food and walked in the markets. (25:20)

meaning, they were human beings who ate and drank like all other people, and they went to the marketplaces to earn a living and engage in business; that did not affect them adversely or reduce their status in any way, as the idolators imagined.

مَا لِهَـذَا الرَّسُولِ يَأْكُلُ الطَّعَامَ وَيَمْشِى فِى الاٌّسْوَاقِ لَوْلا أُنزِلَ إِلَيْهِ مَلَكٌ فَيَكُونَ مَعَهُ نَذِير

اًأَوْ يُلْقَى إِلَيْهِ كَنْزٌ أَوْ تَكُونُ لَهُ جَنَّةٌ يَأْكُلُ مِنْهَا

And they say: "Why does this Messenger eat food, and walk about in the markets. Why is not an angel sent down to him to be a warner with him

Or (why) has not a treasure been granted to him, or why has he not a garden whereof he may eat!'' (25:7-8)

... وَمَا كَانُوا خَالِدِينَ ﴿٨﴾

nor were they immortals.

meaning, in this world; on the contrary, they lived, then they died.

وَمَا جَعَلْنَا لِبَشَرٍ مِّن قَبْلِكَ الْخُلْدَ

And We granted not to any human being immortality before you. (21:34)

But what distinguished them from others was that they received revelation from Allah, and the angels brought down to them from Allah His rulings concerning His creation, what He commanded and what He prohibited.

ثُمَّ صَدَقْنَاهُمُ الْوَعْدَ ...

Then We fulfilled to them the promise.

the promise that their Lord made to destroy the evildoers. Allah fulfilled His promise and did that.

He says:

... فَأَنجَيْنَاهُمْ وَمَن نَّشَاء ...

So We saved them and those whom We willed,

meaning, their followers among the believers,

... وَأَهْلَكْنَا الْمُسْرِفِينَ ﴿٩﴾

but We destroyed Al-Musrifin.

meaning, those who disbelieved the Message brought by the Messengers.

10.

Previous 7-9

لَقَدْ أَنزَلْنَآ إِلَيْكُمْ كِتَـباً فِيهِ ذِكْرُكُمْ أَفَلاَ تَعْقِلُونَ

Indeed, We have sent down for you a Book in which there is Dhikrukum. Will you not then understand!

11.

 وَكَمْ قَصَمْنَا مِن قَرْيَةٍ كَانَتْ ظَـلِمَةً وَأَنشَأْنَا بَعْدَهَا قَوْماً ءَاخَرِينَ

How many a town given to wrongdoing, have We destroyed, and raised up after them another people!

12.

 فَلَمَّآ أَحَسُّواْ بَأْسَنَآ إِذَا هُمْ مِّنْهَا يَرْكُضُونَ

Then, when they sensed Our torment, behold, they (tried to) flee from it.

13.

لاَ تَرْكُضُواْ وَارْجِعُواْ إِلَى مَآ أُتْرِفْتُمْ فِيهِ وَمَسَـكِنِكُمْ لَعَلَّكُمْ تُسْأَلُونَ

Flee not, but return to that wherein you lived a luxurious life, and to your homes, in order that you may be questioned.

14.

 قَالُواْ يوَيْلَنَآ إِنَّا كُنَّا ظَـلِمِينَ

They cried: "Woe to us! Certainly we have been wrongdoers.''

15.

فَمَا زَالَت تِلْكَ دَعْوَاهُمْ حَتَّى جَعَلْنَـهُمْ حَصِيداً خَـمِدِينَ

And that cry of theirs ceased not, till We made them as a field that is reaped, extinct.  

Next 16-20   

The Virtue of the Qur'an Here

Allah points out the noble status of the Qur'an and urges them to recognize its worth:

لَقَدْ أَنزَلْنَا إِلَيْكُمْ كِتَابًا فِيهِ ذِكْرُكُمْ ...

Indeed, We have sent down for you a Book in which there is Dhikrukum.

Ibn Abbas said:

"Honor for you.''

... أَفَلَا تَعْقِلُونَ ﴿١٠﴾

Will you not then understand!

means, will you not understand this blessing, and accept it!

This is like the Ayah:

وَإِنَّهُ لَذِكْرٌ لَّكَ وَلِقَوْمِكَ وَسَوْفَ تُسْـَلُونَ

And verily, this is indeed a Reminder for you and your people, and you will be questioned. (43:44)

How the Evildoers were destroyed

Allah tells:

وَكَمْ قَصَمْنَا مِن قَرْيَةٍ كَانَتْ ظَالِمَةً ...

How many a town given to wrongdoing, have We destroyed,

meaning, they were very many. This is like the Ayah:

وَكَمْ أَهْلَكْنَا مِنَ الْقُرُونِ مِن بَعْدِ نُوحٍ

And how many generations have We destroyed after Nuh! (17:17)

فَكَأَيِّن مِّن قَرْيَةٍ أَهْلَكْنَـهَا وَهِىَ ظَالِمَةٌ فَهِىَ خَاوِيَةٌ عَلَى عُرُوشِهَا

And many a township did We destroy while they were given to wrongdoing, so that it lie in ruins. (22:45)

... وَأَنشَأْنَا بَعْدَهَا قَوْمًا آخَرِينَ ﴿١١﴾

and raised up after them another people!

means, another nation which came after them.

فَلَمَّا أَحَسُّوا بَأْسَنَا ...

Then, when they sensed Our torment,

when they realized that the torment would undoubtedly come upon them, just as their Prophet had warned them,

... إِذَا هُم مِّنْهَا يَرْكُضُونَ ﴿١٢﴾

behold, they (tried to) flee from it.

they tried to run away.

لَا تَرْكُضُوا وَارْجِعُوا إِلَى مَا أُتْرِفْتُمْ فِيهِ وَمَسَاكِنِكُمْ ...

Flee not, but return to that wherein you lived a luxurious life, and to your homes,

This is a way of ridiculing them. It will be said to them by way of ridicule:

"Do not run away from the coming torment; go back to the delights and luxuries and fine homes in which you were living.''

Qatadah said, "Mocking them.''

... لَعَلَّكُمْ تُسْأَلُونَ ﴿١٣﴾

in order that you may be questioned.

about whether you gave thanks for what you had.

قَالُوا يَا وَيْلَنَا إِنَّا كُنَّا ظَالِمِينَ ﴿١٤

They cried: "Woe to us! Certainly we have been wrong- doers.''

They will confess their sins when it will be of no benefit to them.

فَمَا زَالَت تِّلْكَ دَعْوَاهُمْ حَتَّى جَعَلْنَاهُمْ حَصِيدًا خَامِدِينَ ﴿١٥

And that cry of theirs ceased not, till We made them as a field that is reaped, extinct.

meaning, "they will keep on saying that, admitting their wrong-doing, until We harvest them as it were, and their movements and voices come to a stop.''

16.

Previous 10-15

وَمَا خَلَقْنَا السَّمَآءَ وَالاٌّرْضَ وَمَا بَيْنَهُمَا لاَعِبِينَ

We created not the heavens and the earth and all that is between them for play.

17.

 لَوْ أَرَدْنَآ أَن نَّتَّخِذَ لَهْواً لاَّتَّخَذْنَـهُ مِن لَّدُنَّآ إِن كُنَّا فَـعِلِينَ

Had We intended to take a pastime, We could surely have taken it from Us, if We were going to do (that).

18.

  بَلْ نَقْذِفُ بِالْحَقِّ عَلَى الْبَـطِلِ فَيَدْمَغُهُ فَإِذَا هُوَ زَاهِقٌ

Nay, We fling the truth against the falsehood, so it destroys it, and behold, it disappears.

وَلَكُمُ الْوَيْلُ مِمَّا تَصِفُونَ

And woe to you for that which you ascribe.

19.

وَلَهُ مَن فِى السَّمَـوَتِ وَالاٌّرْضِ

To Him belongs whosoever is in the heavens and on earth.

وَمَنْ عِنْدَهُ لاَ يَسْتَكْبِرُونَ عَنْ عِبَادَتِهِ وَلاَ يَسْتَحْسِرُونَ

And those who are near Him are not too proud to worship Him, nor are they weary.

20.

يُسَبِّحُونَ الْلَّيْلَ وَالنَّهَارَ لاَ يَفْتُرُونَ

They glorify His praises night and day, they never slacken.   

Next 21-23   

  Creation was made with Justice and Wisdom

Allah tells:

وَمَا خَلَقْنَا السَّمَاء وَالْأَرْضَ وَمَا بَيْنَهُمَا لَاعِبِينَ ﴿١٦

We created not the heavens and the earth and all that is between them for play.

Allah tells us that He created the heavens and the earth in truth, i.e. with justice.

لِيَجْزِىَ الَّذِينَ أَسَاءُواْ بِمَا عَمِلُواْ وَيِجْزِى الَّذِينَ أَحْسَنُواْ بِالْحُسْنَى

that He may requite those who do evil with that which they have done, and reward those who do good, with what is best. (53:31)

He did not create all that in vain or for (mere) play:

وَمَا خَلَقْنَا السَّمَآءَ وَالاٌّرْضَ وَمَا بَيْنَهُمَا بَـطِلاً ذَلِكَ ظَنُّ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُواْ فَوَيْلٌ لِّلَّذِينَ كَفَرُواْ مِنَ النَّارِ

And We created not the heaven and the earth and all that is between them without purpose! That is the consideration of those who disbelieve! Then woe to those who disbelieve from the Fire! (38:27)

لَوْ أَرَدْنَا أَن نَّتَّخِذَ لَهْوًا لَّاتَّخَذْنَاهُ مِن لَّدُنَّا إِن كُنَّا فَاعِلِينَ ﴿١٧

Had We intended to take a pastime, We could surely have taken it from Us, if We were going to do (that).

Ibn Abi Najih said, narrating from Mujahid: لَوْ أَرَدْنَا أَن نَّتَّخِذَ لَهْوًا لَّاتَّخَذْنَاهُ مِن لَّدُنَّا (Had We intended to take a pastime, We could surely have taken it from Us),

"Meaning, `From Ourself,' He is saying, `We would not have created Paradise or Hell or death or the resurrection or the Reckoning.'''

... إِن كُنَّا فَاعِلِينَ

if We were going to do (that).

Qatadah, As-Suddi, Ibrahim An-Nakha`i and Mughirah bin Miqsam said:

"This means, `We will not do that.'''

Mujahid said, every time the word أَن  (if) is used in the Qur'an, it is a negation.

بَلْ نَقْذِفُ بِالْحَقِّ عَلَى الْبَاطِلِ ...

Nay, We fling the truth against the falsehood,

means, `We explain the truth and thus defeat falsehood.'

Allah says:

... فَيَدْمَغُهُ فَإِذَا هُوَ زَاهِقٌ ...

so it destroys it, and behold, it disappears.

it is fading and vanishing.

... وَلَكُمُ الْوَيْلُ ...

And woe to you!

O you who say that Allah has offspring.

... مِمَّا تَصِفُونَ ﴿١٨﴾

for that which you ascribe.

that which you say and fabricate.

Then Allah informs of the servitude of the angels, and how they persevere in worship night and day:

Everything belongs to Allah and serves Him

Allah tells:

وَلَهُ مَن فِي السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضِ وَمَنْ عِندَهُ ...

To Him belongs whosoever is in the heavens and on earth. And those who are near Him

i.e., the angels,

.... لَا يَسْتَكْبِرُونَ عَنْ عِبَادَتِهِ ...

are not too proud to worship Him,

they do not feel proud and do not refuse to worship Him.

This is like the Ayah:

لَّن يَسْتَنكِفَ الْمَسِيحُ أَن يَكُونَ عَبْداً للَّهِ وَلاَ الْمَلَـئِكَةُ الْمُقَرَّبُونَ وَمَن يَسْتَنْكِفْ عَنْ عِبَادَتِهِ وَيَسْتَكْبِرْ فَسَيَحْشُرُهُمْ إِلَيهِ جَمِيعاً

Al-Masih will never be proud to reject being a servant of Allah, nor the angels who are the near. And whosoever rejects His worship and is proud, then He will gather them all together unto Himself. (4:172)

... وَلَا يَسْتَحْسِرُونَ ﴿١٩﴾

nor are they weary.

means, they do not get tired or feel bored.

يُسَبِّحُونَ اللَّيْلَ وَالنَّهَارَ لَا يَفْتُرُونَ ﴿٢٠

They glorify His praises night and day, they never slacken.

They persist in their worship night and day, obeying Allah to the utmost, and they are able to do this, as Allah says:

لاَّ يَعْصُونَ اللَّهَ مَآ أَمَرَهُمْ وَيَفْعَلُونَ مَا يُؤْمَرُونَ

who do not disobey Allah in what He commands them, but do what they are commanded. (66:6)

21.

Previous 16-20

أَمِ اتَّخَذُواْ آلِهَةً مِّنَ الاٌّرْضِ هُمْ يُنشِرُونَ

Or have they taken (for worship) gods from the earth who raise the dead!

22.

 لَوْ كَانَ فِيهِمَآ آلِهَةٌ إِلاَّ اللَّهُ لَفَسَدَتَا

Had there been therein (in the heavens and the earth) gods besides Allah, then verily, both would have been ruined.

فَسُبْحَـنَ اللَّهِ رَبِّ الْعَرْشِ عَمَّا يَصِفُونَ

Glorified be Allah, the Lord of the Throne, (High is He) above all that (evil) they associate with Him!

23.

 لاَ يُسْأَلُ عَمَّا يَفْعَلُ وَهُمْ يُسْـَلُونَ

He cannot be questioned as to what He does, while they will be questioned.

Next 24-25   

Refutation of false gods

Allah denounces those who take other gods instead of Him:

أَمِ اتَّخَذُوا آلِهَةً مِّنَ الْأَرْضِ هُمْ يُنشِرُونَ ﴿٢١

Or have they taken gods from the earth who raise the dead!

meaning, can they bring the dead back to life and bring them forth from the earth? They cannot do any of that, so how can they make them rivals to Allah and worship them alongside Him!

Then Allah tells us that if there were another god besides Him, the heavens and the earth would be ruined:

لَوْ كَانَ فِيهِمَا آلِهَةٌ إِلَّا اللَّهُ...

Had there been therein gods, besides Allah,

means, in the heavens and the earth,

... لَفَسَدَتَا ...

then verily, both would have been ruined.

This is like the Ayah:

مَا اتَّخَذَ اللَّهُ مِن وَلَدٍ وَمَا كَانَ مَعَهُ مِنْ إِلَـهٍ إِذاً لَّذَهَبَ كُلُّ إِلَـهٍ بِمَا خَلَقَ وَلَعَلاَ بَعْضُهُمْ عَلَى بَعْضٍ سُبْحَـنَ اللَّهِ عَمَّا يَصِفُونَ

No son did Allah beget, nor is there any god along with Him. Then each god would have taken away what he had created, and some would have tried to overcome others!

Glorified be Allah above all that they attribute to Him! (23:91)

And Allah says here:

... فَسُبْحَانَ اللَّهِ رَبِّ الْعَرْشِ عَمَّا يَصِفُونَ ﴿٢٢﴾

Glorified be Allah, the Lord of the Throne, above all that they associate with Him!

meaning, glorified be He above what they say about Him having offspring or partners;

glorified and exalted and sanctified be He far above all the lies that they fabricate.

لَا يُسْأَلُ عَمَّا يَفْعَلُ وَهُمْ يُسْأَلُونَ ﴿٢٣

He cannot be questioned about what He does, while they will be questioned.

He is the Ruler Whose rule cannot be overturned and none can object to it, because of His might, majesty, pride, knowledge, wisdom, justice and subtlety.

...

وَهُمْ يُسْأَلُونَ (while they will be questioned). means, He is the One Who will ask His creation about what they did. This is like the Ayah:

فَوَرَبِّكَ لَنَسْـَلَنَّهُمْ أَجْمَعِينَ  - عَمَّا كَانُواْ يَعْمَلُونَ

So, by your Lord, We shall certainly call all of them to account. For all that they used to do. (15:92-93)

وَهُوَ يُجْيِرُ وَلاَ يُجَارُ عَلَيْهِ

And He protects (all), while against Whom there is no protector. (23:88)

24.

Previous 21-23

أَمِ اتَّخَذُواْ مِن دُونِهِ ءَالِهَةً

Or have they taken for worship gods besides Him!

قُلْ هَاتُواْ بُرْهَـنَكُمْ هَـذَا ذِكْرُ مَن مَّعِىَ وَذِكْرُ مَن قَبْلِى

Say: "Bring your proof. This is the Reminder for those with me and the Reminder for those before me.''

بَلْ أَكْثَرُهُمْ لاَ يَعْلَمُونَ الْحَقَّ فَهُمْ مُّعْرِضُونَ

But most of them know not the Truth, so they are averse.

25.

 وَمَآ أَرْسَلْنَا مِن قَبْلِكَ مِن رَّسُولٍ إِلاَّ نُوحِى إِلَيْهِ

And We did not send any Messenger before you but We revealed to him (saying):

أَنَّهُ لا إِلَـهَ إِلاَّ أَنَاْ فَاعْبُدُونِ

"There is no God but I, so worship Me.''  

Next 26-29   

Allah says:

أَمِ اتَّخَذُوا مِن دُونِهِ آلِهَةً قُلْ هَاتُوا بُرْهَانَكُمْ...

Or have they taken for worship gods besides Him Say: (-- O Muhammad --) Bring your proof.

your evidence for what you are saying.

... هَذَا ذِكْرُ مَن مَّعِيَ ...

This is the Reminder for those with me,

means, the Qur'an.

... وَذِكْرُ مَن قَبْلِي ...

and the Reminder for those before me.

means, the previous Books, unlike what you claim.

... بَلْ أَكْثَرُهُمْ لَا يَعْلَمُونَ الْحَقَّ فَهُم مُّعْرِضُونَ ﴿٢٤﴾

But most of them know not the Truth, so they are averse.

Each Book was revealed to each Prophet who was sent with the message that there is no god except Allah, but you idolators do not recognize the truth, so you turn away from it.

Allah says:

وَمَا أَرْسَلْنَا مِن قَبْلِكَ مِن رَّسُولٍ إِلَّا نُوحِي إِلَيْهِ أَنَّهُ لَا إِلَهَ إِلَّا أَنَا فَاعْبُدُونِ ﴿٢٥

And We did not send any Messenger before you but We revealed to him (saying): "There is no God but I, so worship Me.''

This is like the Ayat:

وَاسْئلْ مَنْ أَرْسَلْنَا مِن قَبْلِكَ مِن رُّسُلِنَآ أَجَعَلْنَا مِن دُونِ الرَّحْمَـنِ ءَالِهَةً يُعْبَدُونَ

And ask those of Our Messengers whom We sent before you: "Did We ever appoint gods to be worshipped besides the Most Gracious!'' (43:45)

وَلَقَدْ بَعَثْنَا فِى كُلِّ أُمَّةٍ رَّسُولاً أَنِ اعْبُدُواْ اللَّهَ وَاجْتَنِبُواْ الْطَّـغُوتَ

And verily, We have sent among every Ummah a Messenger (proclaiming): "Worship Allah, and avoid Taghut (all false deities).'' (16:36)

Every Prophet who was sent by Allah called people to worship Allah Alone, with no partner or associate. The natural inclination of man (Al-Fitrah) also bears witness to that. The idolators have no proof and their dispute is of no use before their Lord; on them is wrath, and for them will be a severe torment.

26.

Previous 24-25

وَقَالُواْ اتَّخَذَ الرَّحْمَـنُ وَلَداً

And they say: "The Most Gracious has begotten children.''

سُبْحَانَهُ بَلْ عِبَادٌ مُّكْرَمُونَ

Glory to Him! They are but honored servants.

27.

 لاَ يَسْبِقُونَهُ بِالْقَوْلِ وَهُمْ بِأَمْرِهِ يَعْمَلُونَ

They speak not until He has spoken, and they act on His command.

28.

 يَعْلَمُ مَا بَيْنَ أَيْدِيهِمْ وَمَا خَلْفَهُمْ وَلاَ يَشْفَعُونَ إِلاَّ لِمَنِ ارْتَضَى

He knows what is before them, and what is behind them, and they cannot intercede except for him with whom He is pleased.

وَهُمْ مِّنْ خَشْيَتِهِ مُشْفِقُونَ

And they stand in awe for fear of Him.

29.

وَمَن يَقُلْ مِنْهُمْ إِنِّى إِلَـهٌ مِّن دُونِهِ فَذلِكَ نَجْزِيهِ جَهَنَّمَ

And if any of them should say: "Verily, I am a god besides Him,'' such We should recompense with Hell.

كَذَلِكَ نَجْزِى الظَّـلِمِينَ

Thus We recompense the wrongdoers.  

Next 30-33   

The Refutation of Those Who claim that the Angels are the Daughters of Allah; description of their Deeds and Status

Allah says:

وَقَالُوا اتَّخَذَ الرَّحْمَنُ وَلَدًا ...

And they say: "The Most Gracious has begotten children.''

Here Allah refutes those who claim that He has offspring among the angels -- exalted and sanctified be He. Some of the Arabs believed that the angels were the daughters of Allah, but Allah says:

... سُبْحَانَهُ بَلْ عِبَادٌ مُّكْرَمُونَ ﴿٢٦﴾

Glory to Him! They are but honored servants.

meaning, the angels are servants of Allah who are honored by Him and who hold high positions of noble status. They obey Him to the utmost in all their words and deeds.

لَا يَسْبِقُونَهُ بِالْقَوْلِ وَهُم بِأَمْرِهِ يَعْمَلُونَ ﴿٢٧

They speak not until He has spoken, and they act on His command.

meaning, they do not initiate any matter before Him or go against His commands; on the contrary, they hasten to do as He commands, and He encompasses them with His knowledge so that nothing whatsoever is hidden from Him.

يَعْلَمُ مَا بَيْنَ أَيْدِيهِمْ وَمَا خَلْفَهُمْ ...

He knows what is before them, and what is behind them,

... وَلَا يَشْفَعُونَ إِلَّا لِمَنِ ارْتَضَى ...

and they cannot intercede except for him with whom He is pleased.

This is like the Ayat:

مَن ذَا الَّذِى يَشْفَعُ عِندَهُ إِلاَّ بِإِذْنِهِ

Who is he that can intercede with Him except with His permission. (2:255)

وَلاَ تَنفَعُ الشَّفَـعَةُ عِندَهُ إِلاَّ لِمَنْ أَذِنَ لَهُ

Intercession with Him profits not except for him whom He permits. (34:23).

There are many Ayat which say similar things.

... وَهُم مِّنْ خَشْيَتِهِ ...

And they for fear of Him,

means, because they fear Him.

... مُشْفِقُونَ ﴿٢٨﴾

And they stand in awe.

وَمَن يَقُلْ مِنْهُمْ إِنِّي إِلَهٌ مِّن دُونِهِ ...

And if any of them should say: "Verily, I am a god besides Him,''

meaning, whoever claims to be a god instead of Allah, i.e., alongside Allah,

... فَذَلِكَ نَجْزِيهِ جَهَنَّمَ كَذَلِكَ نَجْزِي الظَّالِمِينَ ﴿٢٩

such We should recompense with Hell. Thus We recompense the wrongdoers.

meaning, everyone who says this. This is a conditional sentence, and the condition stated does not necessarily have to take place.

This is like the Ayat:

قُلْ إِن كَانَ لِلرَّحْمَـنِ وَلَدٌ فَأَنَاْ أَوَّلُ الْعَـبِدِينَ

Say: "If the Most Gracious had a son, then I am the first of worshippers.'' (43:81)

لَئِنْ أَشْرَكْتَ لَيَحْبَطَنَّ عَمَلُكَ وَلَتَكُونَنَّ مِنَ الْخَـسِرِينَ

If you join others in worship with Allah, (then) surely, (all) your deeds will be in vain, and you will certainly be among the losers. (39:65)

30.

Previous 26-29

أَوَلَمْ يَرَ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُواْ أَنَّ السَّمَـوَتِ وَالاٌّرْضَ كَانَتَا رَتْقاً فَفَتَقْنَـهُمَا

Have not those who disbelieve known that the heavens and the earth were joined together as one united piece, then We parted them!

وَجَعَلْنَا مِنَ الْمَآءِ كُلَّ شَىْءٍ حَىٍّ أَفَلاَ يُؤْمِنُونَ

And We have made from water every living thing. Will they not then believe

31.

 وَجَعَلْنَا فِى الاٌّرْضِ رَوَاسِىَ أَن تَمِيدَ بِهِمْ وَجَعَلْنَا فِيهَا فِجَاجاً سُبُلاً لَّعَلَّهُمْ يَهْتَدُونَ

And We have placed on the earth firm mountains, lest it should shake with them, and We placed therein broad highways for them to pass through, that they may be guided.

32.

 وَجَعَلْنَا السَّمَآءَ سَقْفاً مَّحْفُوظاً وَهُمْ عَنْ ءَايَـتِهَا مُعْرِضُونَ

And We have made the heaven a roof, safe and well-guarded. Yet they turn away from its signs.

33.

وَهُوَ الَّذِى خَلَقَ الَّيْلَ وَالنَّهَـرَ وَالشَّمْسَ وَالْقَمَرَ كُلٌّ فِى فَلَكٍ يَسْبَحُونَ

And He it is Who has created the night and the day, and the sun and the moon, each in an orbit floating.

Next 34-35   

The Signs of Allah in the Heavens and the Earth and in the Night and the Day

Here Allah tells of His perfect might and power in His creation and subjugation of all things.

أَوَلَمْ يَرَ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا ...

Have not those who disbelieve known,

means, those who deny His Divine nature and worship others instead of Him, do they not realize that Allah is the One Who is Independent in His powers of creation and is running the affairs of all things with absolute power. So how can it be appropriate to worship anything else beside Him or to associate others in worship with Him!

... أَنَّ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضَ كَانَتَا رَتْقًا فَفَتَقْنَاهُمَا ...

known that the heavens and the earth were joined together as one united piece, then We parted them!

Do they not see that the heavens and the earth were joined together, i.e. in the beginning they were all one piece, attached to one another and piled up on top of one another, then He separated them from one another, and made the heavens seven and the earth seven, placing the air between the earth and the lowest heaven. Then He caused rain to fall from the sky and vegetation to grow from the earth.

He says:

... وَجَعَلْنَا مِنَ الْمَاء كُلَّ شَيْءٍ حَيٍّ أَفَلَا يُؤْمِنُونَ ﴿٣٠﴾

And We have made from water every living thing. Will they not then believe!

meaning, they see with their own eyes how creation develops step by step. All of that is proof of the existence of the Creator Who is in control of all things and is able to do whatever He wills.

In everything there is a Sign of Him, showing that He is One

Sufyan Ath-Thawri narrated from his father from Ikrimah that Ibn Abbas was asked;"Did the night come first or the day?''

He said, "Do you think that when the heavens and the earth were joined together, there was anything between them except darkness! Thus you may know that the night came before the day.

Ibn Abi Hatim recorded that Ibn Umar said that; a man came to him and questioned him about when the heavens and earth were joined together then they were parted.

He said, "Go to that old man (Sheikh) and ask him, then come and tell me what he says to you.''

So he went to Ibn Abbas and asked him. Ibn Abbas said:

"Yes, the heavens were joined together and it did not rain, and the earth was joined together and nothing grew. When living beings were created to populate the earth, rain came forth from the heavens and vegetation came forth from the earth.''

The man went back to Ibn Umar and told him what had been said.

Ibn Umar said, "Now I know that Ibn Abbas has been given knowledge of the Qur'an. He has spoken the truth, and this is how it was.''

Ibn Umar said: "I did not like the daring attitude of Ibn Abbas in his Tafsir of the Qur'an, but now I know that he has been given knowledge of the Qur'an.''

Sa`id bin Jubayr said:

"The heavens and the earth were attached to one another, then when the heavens were raised up, the earth became separate from them, and this is their parting which was mentioned by Allah in His Book.''

Al-Hasan and Qatadah said,

"They were joined together, then they were separated by this air.''

... وَجَعَلْنَا مِنَ الْمَاء كُلَّ شَيْءٍ حَيٍّ ..

And We have made from water every living thing.

meaning, the origin of every living thing is in water.

Imam Ahmad recorded that Abu Hurayrah said,

"I said: O Messenger of Allah, when I see you I feel happy and content, tell me about everything.''

He said,

كُلُّ شَيْءٍ خُلِقَ مِنْ مَاء

"Everything was created from water."

I said, tell me about something which, if I do it, I will enter Paradise.''

He said:

-       أَفْشِ السَّلَامَ،

-       وَأَطْعِمِ الطَّعَامَ،

-       وَصِلِ الْأَرْحَامَ،

-       وَقُمْ بِاللَّيْلِ وَالنَّاسُ نِيَامٌ،

-       ثُمَّ ادْخُلِ الْجَنَّةَ بِسَلَام

-                      Spread (the greeting of) Salam,

-                      feed others,

-                      uphold the ties of kinship, and

-                      stand in prayer at night when people are sleeping.

-                      Then you will enter Paradise in peace.

This chain of narration fulfills the conditions of the Two Sahihs, apart from Abu Maymunah, who is one of the men of the Sunans, his first name was Salim; and At-Tirmidhi classed him as Sahih.

وَجَعَلْنَا  فِي الْأَرْضِ رَوَاسِيَ ...

And We have placed on the earth firm mountains,

means, mountains which stabilize the earth and keep it steady and lend it weight, lest it should shake with the people, i.e., move and tremble so that they would not be able to stand firm on it -- because it is covered with water, apart from one-quarter of its surface. So the land is exposed to the air and sun, so that its people may see the sky with its dazzling signs and evidence.

So Allah says,

... أَن تَمِيدَ بِهِمْ ...

lest it should shake with them,

meaning, so that it will not shake with them.

... وَجَعَلْنَا فِيهَا فِجَاجًا سُبُلًا ...

and We placed therein broad highways for them to pass through,

means, mountain passes through which they may travel from region to region, country to country. As we can see, the mountains form barriers between one land and another, so Allah created gaps -- passes -- in the mountains so that people may travel from here to there.

So He says:

... لَعَلَّهُمْ يَهْتَدُونَ ﴿٣١﴾

that they may be guided.

وَجَعَلْنَا السَّمَاء سَقْفًا مَّحْفُوظًا ...

And We have made the heaven a roof, safe and well-guarded.

means, covering the earth like a dome above it.

This is like the Ayah,

وَالسَّمَآءَ بَنَيْنَـهَا بِأَيْدٍ وَإِنَّا لَمُوسِعُونَ

With Hands We constructed the heaven. Verily, We are able to extend the vastness of space thereof. (51:47)

وَالسَّمَآءِ وَمَا بَنَـهَا

By the heaven and Him Who built it. (91:5)

أَفَلَمْ يَنظُرُواْ إِلَى السَّمَآءِ فَوْقَهُمْ كَيْفَ بَنَيْنَـهَا وَزَيَّنَّـهَا وَمَا لَهَا مِن فُرُوجٍ

Have they not looked at the heaven above them, how We have made it and adorned it, and there are no rifts in it. (50:6)

The building and making described here refers to the raising of the dome, as when the Messenger of Allah said,

بُنِيَ الْإِسْلَامُ عَلَى خَمْس

Islam is built on five.

i.e., five pillars, which can only refer to a tent as familiar among the Arabs.

...مَّحْفُوظًا ...

safe and well-guarded.

means, high and protected from anything reaching it.

Mujahid said, "Raised up.''

... وَهُمْ عَنْ آيَاتِهَا مُعْرِضُونَ ﴿٣٢﴾

Yet they turn away from its signs.

This is like the Ayah:

وَكَأَيِّن مِّن ءَايَةٍ فِى السَّمَـوَتِ وَالاٌّرْضِ يَمُرُّونَ عَلَيْهَا وَهُمْ عَنْهَا مُعْرِضُونَ

And how many a sign in the heavens and the earth they pass by, while they are averse therefrom. (12:105)

They do not think about how Allah has created it, so vast and high, and adorned it with heavenly bodies both stationary and moving by night and day, such as the sun which completes its circuit in one day and night, until it completes its allotted time, which no one knows except Allah, Who created it and subjugated it and directed its course.

Then Allah says, drawing attention to some of His signs,

وَهُوَ الَّذِي خَلَقَ اللَّيْلَ وَالنَّهَارَ ...

And He it is Who has created the night and the day,

meaning, the one with its darkness and stillness, and the other with its light and human interaction; sometimes the one is longer while the other is shorter, then they switch.

... وَالشَّمْسَ وَالْقَمَرَ ...

and the sun and the moon,

the sun with its own light and its own path and orbit and allotted time, and the moon which shines with a different light and travels on a different path and has its own allotted time.

... كُلٌّ فِي فَلَكٍ يَسْبَحُونَ ﴿٣٣﴾

each in an orbit floating.

means, revolving.

Ibn Abbas said, "They revolve like a spinning wheel, in a circle.''

This is like the Ayah:

فَالِقُ الإِصْبَاحِ وَجَعَلَ الَّيْلَ سَكَناً وَالشَّمْسَ وَالْقَمَرَ حُسْبَاناً ذَلِكَ تَقْدِيرُ الْعَزِيزِ الْعَلِيمِ

(He is the) Cleaver of the daybreak. He has appointed the night for resting, and the sun and the moon for reckoning. Such is the measuring of the All-Mighty, the All-Knowing. (6:96)

34.

Previous 30-33

وَمَا جَعَلْنَا لِبَشَرٍ مِّن قَبْلِكَ الْخُلْدَ أَفَإِيْن مِّتَّ فَهُمُ الْخَـلِدُونَ

And We granted not to any human being immortality before you; then if you die, would they live forever!

35.

 كُلُّ نَفْسٍ ذَآئِقَةُ الْمَوْتِ وَنَبْلُوكُم بِالشَّرِّ وَالْخَيْرِ فِتْنَةً وَإِلَيْنَا تُرْجَعُونَ

Everyone is going to taste death, and We shall test you with evil and with good by way of trial. And to Us you will be returned.   

Next 36-37   

No One has been granted Immortality in this World

Allah tells:

وَمَا جَعَلْنَا لِبَشَرٍ مِّن قَبْلِكَ ...

And We granted not to any human being immortality before you;

means, O Muhammad.

... الْخُلْدَ ...

immortality,

means, in this world. On the contrary,

كُلُّ مَنْ عَلَيْهَا فَانٍ  - وَيَبْقَى وَجْهُ رَبِّكَ ذُو الْجَلْـلِ وَالإِكْرَامِ

Whatsoever is on it (the earth) will perish. And the Face of your Lord full of majesty and honor will remain forever. (55:26-27)

... أَفَإِن مِّتَّ ...

then if you die,

means, O Muhammad,

... فَهُمُ الْخَالِدُونَ ﴿٣٤﴾

would they live forever!

means, they hope that they will live forever after you, but that will not happen; everything will pass away.

So Allah says:

كُلُّ نَفْسٍ ذَائِقَةُ الْمَوْتِ ...

Everyone is going to taste death,

... وَنَبْلُوكُم بِالشَّرِّ وَالْخَيْرِ فِتْنَةً ...

and We shall test you with evil and with good by way of trial.

Meaning, "We shall test you, sometimes with difficulties and sometimes with ease, to see who will give thanks and who will be ungrateful, who will have patience and who will despair.''

Ali bin Abi Talhah reported from Ibn Abbas:

وَنَبْلُوكُم (and We shall test you) means, We will test you,

 بِالشَّرِّ وَالْخَيْرِ فِتْنَةً (with evil and with good by way of trial) means, with difficulties and with times of prosperity, with health and sickness, with richness and poverty, with lawful and unlawful, obedience and sin, with guidance and misguidance.

... وَإِلَيْنَا تُرْجَعُونَ ﴿٣٥﴾

And to Us you will be returned.

means, and We will requite you according to your deeds.

36.

Previous 34-35

وَإِذَا رَآكَ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُواْ إِن يَتَّخِذُونَكَ إِلاَّ هُزُواً أَهَـذَا الَّذِى يَذْكُرُ آلِهَتَكُمْ

21:36 And when those who disbelieved see you, they take you not except for mockery (saying): "Is this the one who talks about your gods!''

وَهُمْ بِذِكْرِ الرَّحْمَـنِ هُمْ كَـفِرُونَ

While they disbelieve at the mention of the Most Gracious.

37.

 خُلِقَ الإنْسَانُ مِنْ عَجَلٍ سَأُوْرِيكُمْ ءَايَـتِى فَلاَ تَسْتَعْجِلُونِ

Man is created of haste. I will show you My Ayat. So ask Me not to hasten (them).  

Next 38-40   

How the Idolators mocked the Prophet, Allah tells His Prophet

Allah says:

وَإِذَا رَآكَ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا ...

And when those who disbelieved see you,

meaning, the disbelievers of the Quraysh, such as Abu Jahl and his like.

... إِن يَتَّخِذُونَكَ إِلَّا هُزُوًا ...

they take you not except for mockery,

means, they make fun of you and insult you, saying,

... أَهَذَا الَّذِي يَذْكُرُ آلِهَتَكُمْ ...

"Is this the one who talks about your gods!''

meaning, is this the one who insults your gods and ridicules your intelligence!

Allah says:

... وَهُم بِذِكْرِ الرَّحْمَنِ هُمْ كَافِرُونَ ﴿٣٦﴾

While they disbelieve at the mention of the Most Gracious.

meaning, they disbelieve in Allah and yet they mock the Messenger of Allah.

As Allah says:

وَإِذَا رَأَوْكَ إِن يَتَّخِذُونَكَ إِلاَّ هُزُواً أَهَـذَا الَّذِى بَعَثَ اللَّهُ رَسُولاً

إِن كَادَ لَيُضِلُّنَا عَنْ ءَالِهَتِنَا لَوْلاَ أَن صَبْرَنَا عَلَيْهَا وَسَوْفَ يَعْلَمُونَ حِينَ يَرَوْنَ الْعَذَابَ مَنْ أَضَلُّ سَبِيلاً

And when they see you, they treat you only in mockery (saying): "Is this the one whom Allah has sent as a Messenger He would have nearly misled us from our gods, had it not been that we were patient and constant in their worship!''

And they will know, when they see the torment, who it is that is most astray from the path! (25:41-42)

خُلِقَ الْإِنسَانُ مِنْ عَجَلٍ سَأُرِيكُمْ آيَاتِي فَلَا تَسْتَعْجِلُونِ ﴿٣٧

Man is created of haste. I will show you My Ayat. So ask Me not to hasten (them).

38.

Previous 36-37

وَيَقُولُونَ مَتَى هَـذَا الْوَعْدُ إِن كُنتُمْ صَـدِقِينَ

And they say: "When will this promise (come to pass), if you are truthful.''

39.

 لَوْ يَعْلَمُ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُواْ حِينَ لاَ يَكُفُّونَ عَن وُجُوهِهِمُ النَّارَ وَلاَ عَن ظُهُورِهِمْ وَلاَ هُمْ يُنصَرُونَ

If only those who disbelieved knew (the time) when they will not be able to ward off the Fire from their faces, nor from their backs, and they will not be helped.

40.

 بَلْ تَأْتِيهِم بَغْتَةً فَتَبْهَتُهُمْ فَلاَ يَسْتَطِيعُونَ رَدَّهَا وَلاَ هُمْ يُنظَرُونَ

Nay, it will come upon them all of a sudden and will perplex them, and they will have no power to avert it nor will they get respite.  

Next 41-43   

The Idolators seek to hasten on the Punishment

Allah also tells us how the idolators seek to hasten punishment upon themselves, out of denial, rejection, disbelief, stubbornness and a belief that it will never happen.

He says:

وَيَقُولُونَ مَتَى هَذَا الْوَعْدُ إِن كُنتُمْ صَادِقِينَ ﴿٣٨

And they say: "When will this promise (come to pass), if you are truthful''.

And Allah says:

لَوْ يَعْلَمُ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا حِينَ لَا يَكُفُّونَ عَن وُجُوهِهِمُ النَّارَ وَلَا عَن ظُهُورِهِمْ ...

If only those who disbelieved knew (the time) when they will not be able to ward off the Fire from their faces, nor from their backs,

meaning, if only they knew for certain that it will inevitably come to pass, they would not seek to hasten it. If only they knew how the torment will overwhelm them from above them and from beneath their feet.

لَهُمْ مِّن فَوْقِهِمْ ظُلَلٌ مِّنَ النَّارِ وَمِن تَحْتِهِمْ ظُلَلٌ

They shall have coverings of Fire, above them and coverings (of Fire) beneath them. (39:16)

لَهُم مِّن جَهَنَّمَ مِهَادٌ وَمِن فَوْقِهِمْ غَوَاشٍ

Theirs will be a bed of Hell (Fire), and over them coverings (of Hellfire). (7:41)

And in this Ayah Allah says:

... حِينَ لَا يَكُفُّونَ عَن وُجُوهِهِمُ النَّارَ وَلَا عَن ظُهُورِهِمْ ...

when they will not be able to ward off the Fire from their faces, nor from their backs,

And Allah says:

سَرَابِيلُهُم مِّن قَطِرَانٍ وَتَغْشَى وُجُوهَهُمْ النَّارُ

Their garments will be of tar, and fire will cover their faces. (14:50)

The torment will surround them on all sides,

... وَلَا هُمْ يُنصَرُونَ ﴿٣٩﴾

and they will not be helped.

means, and they will have no helper. This is like the Ayah:

وَمَا لَهُم مِّنَ اللَّهِ مِن وَاقٍ

And they have no guardian against Allah. (13:34)

بَلْ تَأْتِيهِم بَغْتَةً ...

Nay, it will come upon them all of a sudden,

means, the Fire will come upon them suddenly, i.e., it will take them by surprise.

... فَتَبْهَتُهُمْ ...

and will perplex them,

means, it will scare them, and they will succumb to it in confusion, not knowing what they are doing.

... فَلَا يَسْتَطِيعُونَ رَدَّهَا ...

and they will have no power to avert it,

means, they will have no means of doing so.

... وَلَا هُمْ يُنظَرُونَ ﴿٤٠﴾

nor will they get respite.

means, it will not be delayed for them even for an instant.

41.

Previous 38-40

وَلَقَدِ اسْتُهْزِىءَ بِرُسُلٍ مِّن قَبْلِكَ فَحَاقَ بِالَّذِينَ سَخِرُواْ مِنْهُمْ مَّا كَانُواْ بِهِ يَسْتَهْزِءُونَ

Indeed (many) Messengers were mocked before you, but the scoffers were surrounded by what they used to mock.

42.

 قُلْ مَن يَكْلَؤُكُم بِالَّيْلِ وَالنَّهَارِ مِنَ الرَّحْمَـنِ بَلْ هُمْ عَن ذِكْرِ رَبِّهِمْ مُّعْرِضُونَ

Say: "Who can guard and protect you in the night or in the day from the Most Gracious!'' Nay, but they turn away from the remembrance of their Lord.

43.

 أَمْ لَهُمْ آلِهَةٌ تَمْنَعُهُمْ مِّن دُونِنَا لاَ يَسْتَطِيعُونَ نَصْرَ أَنْفُسِهِمْ وَلاَ هُمْ مِّنَّا يُصْحَبُونَ

Or have they gods who can guard them from Us! They have no power to help themselves, nor can they be protected from Us.  

Next 44-47   

The Lessons to be learned from Those Who mocked the Messengers in the Past

Allah says consoling His Messenger for the pain and insult caused by the mockery and disbelief of the idolators,

وَلَقَدِ اسْتُهْزِئَ بِرُسُلٍ مِّن قَبْلِكَ فَحَاقَ بِالَّذِينَ سَخِرُوا مِنْهُم مَّا كَانُوا بِهِ يَسْتَهْزِؤُون ﴿٤١

Indeed (many) Messengers were mocked before you, but the scoffers were surrounded by what they used to mock.

meaning, the punishment which they thought would never come to pass. This is like the Ayah:

وَلَقَدْ كُذِّبَتْ رُسُلٌ مِّن قَبْلِكَ فَصَبَرُواْ عَلَى مَا كُذِّبُواْ وَأُوذُواْ حَتَّى أَتَـهُمْ نَصْرُنَا وَلاَ مُبَدِّلَ لِكَلِمَـتِ اللَّهِ وَلَقدْ جَآءَكَ مِن نَّبَإِ الْمُرْسَلِينَ

Verily, Messengers were denied before you, but with patience they bore the denial, and they were hurt; till Our help reached them, and none can alter the Words of Allah. Surely, there has reached you the information (news) about the Messengers (before you). (6:34)

Then Allah mentions His favor for His creatures; He protects them by night and by day, taking care of them and watching over them with His Eye that never sleeps.

قُلْ مَن يَكْلَؤُكُم بِاللَّيْلِ وَالنَّهَارِ مِنَ الرَّحْمَنِ ...

Say: "Who can guard and protect you in the night or in the day from the Most Gracious!''

means, other than the Most Gracious Himself.

... بَلْ هُمْ عَن ذِكْرِ رَبِّهِم مُّعْرِضُونَ ﴿٤٢﴾

Nay, but they turn away from the remembrance of their Lord.

means, they do not recognize the blessings and favor of Allah towards them; they turn away from His signs and blessings.

أَمْ لَهُمْ آلِهَةٌ تَمْنَعُهُم مِّن دُونِنَا ...

Or have they gods who can guard them from Us!

This is a rhetorical question aimed at denouncing and rebuking.

The meaning is, do they have any gods who can protect them and take care of them other than Us. It is not as they imagine or as they claim.

Allah says:

... لَا يَسْتَطِيعُونَ نَصْرَ أَنفُسِهِمْ ...

They have no power to help themselves,

these gods on whom they rely instead of Allah cannot even help themselves.

... وَلَا هُم مِّنَّا يُصْحَبُونَ ﴿٤٣﴾

nor can they be protected from Us.

Al-`Awfi reported from Ibn Abbas,"Nor can they be guarded from Us.''

44.

Previous 41-43

 بَلْ مَتَّعْنَا هَـؤُلاءِ وَءَابَآءَهُمْ حَتَّى طَالَ عَلَيْهِمُ الْعُمُرُ

 Nay, We gave the luxuries of this life to these men and their fathers until the period grew long for them.

أَفَلاَ يَرَوْنَ أَنَّا نَأْتِى الاٌّرْضَ نَنقُصُهَا مِنْ أَطْرَافِهَآ

See they not that We gradually reduce the land from its outlying borders!

أَفَهُمُ الْغَـلِبُونَ

Is it then they who will overcome!

45.

 قُلْ إِنَّمَآ أُنذِرُكُم بِالْوَحْىِ وَلاَ يَسْمَعُ الصُّمُّ الدُّعَآءَ إِذَا مَا يُنذَرُونَ

Say: "I warn you only by the revelation. "But the deaf will not hear the call, (even) when they are warned.

46.

 وَلَئِن مَّسَّتْهُمْ نَفْحَةٌ مِّنْ عَذَابِ رَبِّكَ لَيَقُولُنَّ يويْلَنَآ إِنَّا كُنَّا ظَـلِمِينَ

And if a breath of the torment of your Lord touches them, they will surely cry: "Woe unto us! Indeed we have been wrongdoers.''

47.

 وَنَضَعُ الْمَوَزِينَ الْقِسْطَ لِيَوْمِ الْقِيَـمَةِ فَلاَ تُظْلَمُ نَفْسٌ شَيْئاً

And We shall set up Balances of justice on the Day of Resurrection, then none will be dealt with unjustly in anything.

وَإِن كَانَ مِثْقَالَ حَبَّةٍ مِّنْ خَرْدَلٍ أَتَيْنَا بِهَا

And if there be the weight of a mustard seed, We will bring it.

 وَكَفَى بِنَا حَـسِبِينَ

And sufficient are We to take account.  

Next 48-50   

How the Idolators are deceived by their long and luxurious Lives in this World, and the Explanation of the Truth

Allah tells:

بَلْ مَتَّعْنَا هَؤُلَاء وَآبَاءهُمْ حَتَّى طَالَ عَلَيْهِمُ الْعُمُرُ ...

Nay, We gave the luxuries of this life to these men and their fathers until the period grew long for them.

Allah explains that they have been deceived and misled by the luxuries that they enjoy in this world and the long life that they have been given, so they believe that they are following something good.

Then Allah warns them:

... أَفَلَا يَرَوْنَ أَنَّا نَأْتِي الْأَرْضَ نَنقُصُهَا مِنْ أَطْرَافِهَا ...

See they not that We gradually reduce the land (in their control) from its outlying borders!

This is like the Ayah:

وَلَقَدْ أَهْلَكْنَا مَا حَوْلَكُمْ مِّنَ الْقُرَى وَصَرَّفْنَا الاٌّيَـتِ لَعَلَّهُمْ يَرْجِعُونَ

And indeed We have destroyed towns round about you, and We have shown the Ayat in various ways that they might return. (46:27)

Al-Hasan Al-Basri said: "This means the victory of Islam over disbelief.''

The meaning is: Do they not learn a lesson from the fact that Allah supported those (believers) against their enemies, He destroyed the disbelieving nations and the evil-doing townships, and He saved His believing servants.

So Allah says:

... أَفَهُمُ الْغَالِبُونَ ﴿٤٤﴾

Is it then they who will overcome!

meaning, on the contrary, they are the ones who will be overcome, who will be defeated, humiliated and brought low.

قُلْ إِنَّمَا أُنذِرُكُم بِالْوَحْيِ ...

Say: "I warn you only by the revelation.''

meaning, `I only convey to you the warning of Allah's punishment and vengeance, and this is no more than that which Allah reveals to me.' But this is of no benefit to the one whom Allah has made blind and has put a seal over his hearing and his heart. He says:

... وَلَا يَسْمَعُ الصُّمُّ الدُّعَاء إِذَا مَا يُنذَرُونَ ﴿٤٥﴾

But the deaf will not hear the call, (even) when they are warned.

Allah says:

وَلَئِن مَّسَّتْهُمْ نَفْحَةٌ مِّنْ عَذَابِ رَبِّكَ لَيَقُولُنَّ يَا وَيْلَنَا إِنَّا كُنَّا ظَالِمِينَ ﴿٤٦

And if a breath of the torment of your Lord touches them, they will surely, cry: "Woe unto us! Indeed we have been wrongdoers!''

If these disbelievers were affected by the slightest touch of Allah's punishment, they would confess their sins and admit that they had wronged themselves in this world.

وَنَضَعُ الْمَوَازِينَ الْقِسْطَ لِيَوْمِ الْقِيَامَةِ فَلَا تُظْلَمُ نَفْسٌ شَيْئًا ...

And We shall set up Balances of justice on the Day of Resurrection, then none will be dealt with unjustly in anything.

meaning, "We shall set up the Balances of justice on the Day of Resurrection.''

The majority of scholars state that it is one Balance, and the plural form is used here to reflect the large number of deeds which will be weighed therein.

... فَلَا تُظْلَمُ نَفْسٌ شَيْئًا  وَإِن كَانَ مِثْقَالَ حَبَّةٍ مِّنْ خَرْدَلٍ أَتَيْنَا بِهَا وَكَفَى بِنَا حَاسِبِينَ ﴿٤٧﴾

then none will be dealt with unjustly in anything. And if there be the weight of a mustard seed, We will bring it. And sufficient are We to take account.

This is like the Ayat:

وَلاَ يَظْلِمُ رَبُّكَ أَحَدًا

and your Lord treats no one with injustice. (18:49)

إِنَّ اللَّهَ لاَ يَظْلِمُ مِثْقَالَ ذَرَّةٍ وَإِن تَكُ حَسَنَةً يُضَـعِفْهَا وَيُؤْتِ مِن لَّدُنْهُ أَجْراً عَظِيماً

Surely, Allah wrongs not even of the weight of speck of dust, but if there is any good, He doubles it, and gives from Him a great reward. (4:40)

يبُنَىَّ إِنَّهَآ إِن تَكُ مِثْقَالَ حَبَّةٍ مِّنْ خَرْدَلٍ فَتَكُنْ فِى صَخْرَةٍ أَوْ فِى السَّمَـوَتِ أَوْ فِى الاٌّرْضِ يَأْتِ بِهَا اللَّهُ إِنَّ اللَّهَ لَطِيفٌ خَبِيرٌ

"O my son! If it be equal to the weight of a grain of mustard seed, and though it be in a rock, or in the heavens or in the earth, Allah will bring it forth. Verily, Allah is Subtle, Well-Aware.'' (31:16)

In the Two Sahihs it was recorded that Abu Hurayrah said that the Messenger of Allah said:

كَلِمَتَانِ خَفِيفَتَانِ عَلَى اللِّسَانِ، ثَقِيلَتَانِ فِي الْمِيزَانِ، حَبِيبَتَانِ إِلَى الرَّحْمَنِ:

سُبْحَانَ اللهِ وَبِحَمْدِهِ، سُبْحَانَ اللهِ الْعَظِيم

Two words which are light on the tongue, heavy in the Balance and beloved to Ar-Rahman:

"Subhan Allahi wa bi hamdihi, Subhan Allahil `Azim (Glory and praise be to Allah, Glory be to Allah the Almighty).''

Imam Ahmad also recorded that A'ishah said that;

one of the Companions of the Messenger of Allah sat down before him and said, "O Messenger of Allah, I have two slaves who lie to me, betray me and disobey me, and I hit them and insult them. How do I stand with regard to them?''

The Messenger of Allah said:

يُحْسَبُ مَا خَانُوكَ وَعَصَوْكَ وَكَذَّبُوكَ وَعِقَابُكَ إِيَّاهُمْ، فَإِنْ كَانَ عِقَابُكَ إِيَّاهُمْ بِقَدْرِ ذُنُوبِهِمْ، كَانَ كَفَافًا لَا لَكَ وَلَا عَلَيْكَ، وَإِنْ كَانَ عِقَابُكَ إِيَّاهُمْ دُونَ ذُنُوبِهِمْ، كَانَ فَضْلًا لَكَ، وَإِنْ كَانَ عِقَابُكَ إِيَّاهُمْ فَوْقَ ذُنُوبِهِمْ، اقْتُصَّ لَهُمْ مِنْكَ الْفَضْلُ الَّذِي بَقِيَ قَبْلَك

The extent to which they betrayed you, disobeyed you and lied to you will be measured against the punishment you meted out to them. If your punishment was commensurate with their misconduct, then you will be equal and you will not have anything counted for you or against you.

If your punishment of them was less than that what they deserved for their misconduct, then this will count in your favor. If your punishment of them was more than what they deserved for their misconduct, then Allah will take what is due to them from you.

Then the man started to weep before the Messenger of Allah, and the Messenger of Allah asked,

مَالَهُ لَا يَقْرَأُ كِتَابَ الله

وَنَضَعُ الْمَوَازِينَ الْقِسْطَ لِيَوْمِ الْقِيَامَةِ فَلَا تُظْلَمُ نَفْسٌ شَيْئًا وَإِن كَانَ مِثْقَالَ حَبَّةٍ مِّنْ خَرْدَلٍ أَتَيْنَا بِهَا وَكَفَى بِنَا حَاسِبِينَ

What is the matter with him Has he not read the words of Allah,

And We shall set up Balances of justice on the Day of Resurrection, then none will be dealt with unjustly in anything. And if there be the weight of a mustard seed, We will bring it. And sufficient are We to take account.

The man said, "O Messenger of Allah, I think there is nothing better than keeping away from these people -- meaning his slaves -- I call upon you to bear witness that they are all free.''

48.

Previous 44-47

 وَلَقَدْ ءَاتَيْنَا مُوسَى وَهَـرُونَ الْفُرْقَانَ وَضِيَآءً وَذِكْراً لِّلْمُتَّقِينَ

And indeed We granted to Musa and Harun the criterion, and a shining light and a Reminder for those who have Taqwa.

49.

 الَّذِينَ يَخْشَوْنَ رَبَّهُمْ بِالْغَيْبِ وَهُمْ مِّنَ السَّاعَةِ مُشْفِقُونَ

Those who fear their Lord in the unseen, and they are afraid of the Hour.

50.

 وَهَـذَا ذِكْرٌ مُّبَارَكٌ أَنزَلْنَـهُ أَفَأَنْتُمْ لَهُ مُنكِرُونَ

And this is a blessed Reminder which We have sent down; will you then deny it!

Next 51-56   

 The Revelation of the Tawrah and the Qur'an

We have already noted that Allah often mentions Musa and Muhammad together -- may the peace and blessings of Allah be upon them both -- and He often mentions their Books together as well.

He says:

وَلَقَدْ آتَيْنَا مُوسَى وَهَارُونَ الْفُرْقَانَ ...

And indeed We granted to Musa and Harun the criterion.

Mujahid said, "This means the Scripture.''

Abu Salih said: "The Tawrah.''

Qatadah said: "The Tawrah, what it permits and it forbids, and how Allah differentiated between truth and falsehood.''

In conclusion, we may say that the heavenly Books included the distinction between truth and falsehood, guidance and misguidance, transgression and the right way, lawful and unlawful, and that which will fill the heart with light, guidance, fear of Allah and repentance.

So Allah says:

...الْفُرْقَانَ  وَضِيَاء وَذِكْرًا لِّلْمُتَّقِينَ ﴿٤٨

the criterion, and a shining light and a Reminder for those who have Taqwa.

meaning, a reminder and exhortation for them.

Then He describes them as:

الَّذِينَ يَخْشَوْنَ رَبَّهُم بِالْغَيْبِ ...

Those who fear their Lord in the unseen.

This is like the Ayah:

مَّنْ خَشِىَ الرَّحْمَـنَ بِالْغَيْبِ وَجَآءَ بِقَلْبٍ مُّنِيبٍ

Who feared the Most Gracious in the unseen and came with a repenting heart. (50:33)

إِنَّ الَّذِينَ يَخْشَوْنَ رَبَّهُم بِالْغَيْبِ لَهُم مَّغْفِرَةٌ وَأَجْرٌ كَبِيرٌ

Verily, those who fear their Lord unseen, theirs will be forgiveness and a great reward. (67:12)

... وَهُم مِّنَ السَّاعَةِ مُشْفِقُونَ ﴿٤٩﴾

and they are afraid of the Hour.

means, they fear it.

Then Allah says:

وَهَذَا ذِكْرٌ مُّبَارَكٌ أَنزَلْنَاهُ ...

And this is a blessed Reminder which We have sent down;

means, the Magnificent Qur'an, which falsehood cannot approach, from before it or behind it, revealed by the All-Wise, Worthy of all praise.

... أَفَأَنتُمْ لَهُ مُنكِرُونَ ﴿٥٠﴾

will you then deny it!

means, will you deny it when it is the utmost in clarity and truth!

51.

Previous 48-50

 وَلَقَدْ ءَاتَيْنَآ إِبْرَهِيمَ رُشْدَهُ مِن قَبْلُ وَكُنَّا بِهِ عَـلِمِينَ

And indeed We bestowed aforetime on Ibrahim his guidance, and We were Well-Acquainted with him.

52.

 إِذْ قَالَ لاًّبِيهِ وَقَوْمِهِ مَا هَـذِهِ التَّمَـثِيلُ الَّتِى أَنتُمْ لَهَا عَـكِفُونَ

When he said to his father and his people: "What are these images to which you are devoted!''

53.

 قَالُواْ وَجَدْنَآ ءَابَآءَنَا لَهَا عَـبِدِينَ

They said: "We found our fathers worshipping them.''

54.

قَالَ لَقَدْ كُنتُمْ أَنتُمْ وَءَابَآؤُكُمْ فِى ضَلَـلٍ مُّبِينٍ

He said: "Indeed you and your fathers have been in manifest error.''

55.

قَالُواْ أَجِئْتَنَا بِالْحَقِّ أَمْ أَنتَ مِنَ اللَّـعِبِينَ

They said: "Have you brought us the Truth, or are you one of those who play about?''

56.

قَالَ بَل رَّبُّكُمْ رَبُّ السَّمَـوَتِ وَالاٌّرْضِ الَّذِى فطَرَهُنَّ وَأَنَاْ عَلَى ذلِكُمْ مِّنَ الشَّـهِدِينَ

He said: "Nay, your Lord is the Lord of the heavens and the earth, Who created them and to that I am one of the witnesses.''  

Next 57-63   

The Story of Ibrahim and his People

Allah tells:

وَلَقَدْ آتَيْنَا إِبْرَاهِيمَ رُشْدَهُ مِن قَبْلُ وَكُنَّا بِه عَالِمِينَ ﴿٥١

And indeed We bestowed aforetime on Ibrahim his guidance,

Allah tells us about His close Friend Ibrahim, peace be upon him, and how He bestowed upon him guidance aforetime, i.e., from an early age He inspired him with truth and evidence against his people, as Allah says elsewhere:

وَتِلْكَ حُجَّتُنَآ ءَاتَيْنَـهَآ إِبْرَهِيمَ عَلَى قَوْمِهِ

And that was Our proof which We gave Ibrahim against his people. (6:83)

The point here is that Allah is telling us that He gave guidance to Ibrahim aforetime, i.e., He had already guided him at an early age.

... وَكُنَّا بِه عَالِمِينَ

and We were Well-Acquainted with him.

means, and he was worthy of that.

Then Allah says:

إِذْ قَالَ لِأَبِيهِ وَقَوْمِهِ مَا هَذِهِ التَّمَاثِيلُ الَّتِي أَنتُمْ لَهَا عَاكِفُونَ ﴿٥٢

When he said to his father and his people: "What are these images, to which you are devoted!''

This is the guidance which he had been given during his youth: his denunciation of his people's worship of idols instead of Allah.

Ibrahim said:

.. مَا هَذِهِ التَّمَاثِيلُ الَّتِي أَنتُمْ لَهَا عَاكِفُونَ

"What are these images, to which you are devoted!''

meaning, which you worship with such devotion.

قَالُوا وَجَدْنَا آبَاءنَا لَهَا عَابِدِينَ ﴿٥٣

They said: "We found our fathers worshipping them.''

means, they had no other evidence apart from the misguided actions of their forefathers.

قَالَ لَقَدْ كُنتُمْ أَنتُمْ وَآبَاؤُكُمْ فِي ضَلَالٍ مُّبِينٍ ﴿٥٤

He (Ibrahim) said: Indeed you and your fathers have been in manifest error.

meaning, Speaking to your fathers whose actions you cite as evidence would be the same as speaking to you. Both you and they are misguided and are not following any straight path.' When he called their intelligence into question, and said that their fathers were misguided and belittled their gods,

قَالُوا أَجِئْتَنَا بِالْحَقِّ أَمْ أَنتَ مِنَ اللَّاعِبِينَ ﴿٥٥

They said: "Have you brought us the Truth, or are you one of those who play about?''

They said: `These words that you are saying, are you speaking in jest or are you telling the truth! For we have never heard such a thing before.'

قَالَ بَل رَّبُّكُمْ رَبُّ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضِ الَّذِي فَطَرَهُنَّ ...

He said: "Nay, your Lord is the Lord of the heavens and the earth, Who created them...''

meaning, your Lord, beside Whom there is no other god, is the One Who created the heavens and the earth and all that they contain; He is the One Who initiated their creation; He is the Creator of all things.

... وَأَنَا عَلَى ذَلِكُم مِّنَ الشَّاهِدِينَ ﴿٥٦﴾

and to that I am one of the witnesses.

means, and I bear witness that there is no God other than Him and no Lord except Him.

57.

Previous 51-56

 وَتَاللَّهِ لأَكِيدَنَّ أَصْنَـمَكُمْ بَعْدَ أَن تُوَلُّواْ مُدْبِرِينَ

"And by Allah, I shall plot a plan for your idols after you have gone away and turned your backs.''

58.

 فَجَعَلَهُمْ جُذَاذاً إِلاَّ كَبِيراً لَّهُمْ لَعَلَّهُمْ إِلَيْهِ يَرْجِعُونَ

So he broke them to pieces, except the biggest of them, that they might turn to it.

59.

 قَالُواْ مَن فَعَلَ هَـذَا بِـَالِهَتِنَآ إِنَّهُ لَمِنَ الظَّـلِمِينَ

They said: "Who has done this to our gods! He must indeed be one of the wrongdoers.''

60.

قَالُواْ سَمِعْنَا فَتًى يَذْكُرُهُمْ يُقَالُ لَهُ إِبْرَهِيمُ

They said: "We heard a young man talking against them, who is called Ibrahim.''

61.

قَالُواْ فَأْتُواْ بِهِ عَلَى أَعْيُنِ النَّاسِ لَعَلَّهُمْ يَشْهَدُونَ

They said: "Then bring him before the eyes of the people, that they may testify.''

62.

قَالُواْ ءَأَنْتَ فَعَلْتَ هَـذَا بِـَالِهَتِنَا يإِبْرَهِيمُ

They said: "Are you the one who has done this to our gods, O Ibrahim.''

63.

قَالَ بَلْ فَعَلَهُ كَبِيرُهُمْ هَـذَا فَاسْـَلُوهُمْ إِن كَانُواْ يِنْطِقُونَ 

He said: "Nay, this one, the biggest of them did it. Ask them, if they can speak!''  

Next 64-67   

How Ibrahim broke the Idols

Then Ibrahim swore an oath, which some of his people heard, to plot against their idols, i.e., to break them and destroy them after they had gone away and turned their backs, when they went out to their festival. They had a festival which they would go out to celebrate.

Abu Ishaq reported from Abu Al-Ahwas from Abdullah (Ibn Mas`ud),

"When the people of Ibrahim went out to celebrate their festival, they passed by him and said, `O Ibrahim, are you not coming out with us?'

He said, `I am sick.' ''

It was only the day before that he had said,

وَتَاللَّهِ لَأَكِيدَنَّ أَصْنَامَكُم بَعْدَ أَن تُوَلُّوا مُدْبِرِينَ ﴿٥٧

And by Allah, I shall plot a plan for your idols after you have gone away and turned your backs.

and some of the people had heard him.

فَجَعَلَهُمْ جُذَاذًا إِلَّا كَبِيرًا لَّهُمْ ...

So he broke them to pieces, except the biggest of them,

means, he smashed them all, except for the biggest idol.

This is like the Ayah,

فَرَاغَ عَلَيْهِمْ ضَرْباً بِالْيَمِينِ

Then he turned upon them, striking (them) with (his) right hand. (37:93)

... لَعَلَّهُمْ إِلَيْهِ يَرْجِعُونَ ﴿٥٨﴾

that they might turn to it.

It was said that he put a hammer in the hands of the biggest idol so that the people would think that it had become jealous on its own account and objected to these smaller idols being worshipped alongside it, so it had broken them.

قَالُوا مَن فَعَلَ هَذَا بِآلِهَتِنَا إِنَّهُ لَمِنَ الظَّالِمِينَ ﴿٥٩

They said: "Who has done this to our gods He must indeed be one of the wrongdoers.''

When they came back and saw what Ibrahim had done to their idols, humiliating them and lowering their status, proving that they were not divine and that those who worshipped them were fools, قَالُوا مَن فَعَلَ هَذَا بِآلِهَتِنَا إِنَّهُ لَمِنَ الظَّالِمِينَ (They said: "Who has done this to our gods He must indeed be one of the wrongdoers),'' because of this action of his.

قَالُوا سَمِعْنَا فَتًى يَذْكُرُهُمْ يُقَالُ لَهُ إِبْرَاهِيمُ ﴿٦٠

They said: "We heard a young man talking against them, who is called Ibrahim.''

Those who had heard him swearing to plot against them said, we heard a young man talking about them, and they said that he was called Ibrahim.

قَالُوا فَأْتُوا بِهِ عَلَى أَعْيُنِ النَّاسِ لَعَلَّهُمْ يَشْهَدُونَ ﴿٦١

They said: "Then bring him before the eyes of the people that they may testify.''

meaning, in front of a large audience so that all the people could be present. This was Ibrahim's ultimate purpose, so that he could tell this great gathering about the extent of their ignorance and how foolish they were to worship idols which could not defend themselves from harm or help themselves, so how could they ask them for help!

قَالُوا أَأَنتَ فَعَلْتَ هَذَا بِآلِهَتِنَا يَا إِبْرَاهِيمُ ﴿٦٢

They said: "Are you the one who has done this to our gods, O Ibrahim!''

قَالَ بَلْ فَعَلَهُ كَبِيرُهُمْ هَذَا ...

He said: "Nay, this one, the biggest of them did it...''

referring to the one he had left alone and had not broken.

... فَاسْأَلُوهُمْ إِن كَانُوا يَنطِقُونَ ﴿٦٣﴾

Ask them, if they can speak!

He was hoping that they would admit of their own volition that these idols could not speak and that this idol would not say anything because it was inanimate.

In the Two Sahihs it was recorded from Abu Hurayrah that the Messenger of Allah said:

إِنَّ إِبْرَاهِيمَ عَلَيْهِ السَّلَامُ لَمْ يَكْذِبْ غَيْرَ ثَلَاثٍ: ثِنْتَيْنِ فِي ذَاتِ اللهِ قَوْلُهُ:

Ibrahim, upon him be peace, did not tell lies except on three occasions, two for the sake of Allah -- when he said: بَلْ فَعَلَهُ كَبِيرُهُمْ هَذَا Nay, this one, the biggest of them did it.and when he said: إِنِّى سَقِيمٌ Verily, I am sick. (37:89)

قَالَ: وَبَيْنَا هُوَ يَسِيرُ فِي أَرْضِ جَبَّارٍ مِنَ الْجَبَابِرَةِ وَمَعَهُ سَارَّةُ، إِذْ نَزَلَ مَنْزِلًا فَأَتَى الْجَبَّارَ رَجُلٌ فَقَالَ: إِنَّهُ قَدْ نَزَل هَهُنَا رَجُلٌ بِأَرْضِكَ مَعَهُ امْرَأَةٌ أَحْسَنُ النَّاسِ،

فَأَرْسَلَ إِلَيْهِ فَجَاءَ، فَقَالَ: مَا هَذِهِ الْمَرْأَةُ مِنْكَ؟

قَالَ: هِيَ أُخْتِي.

قَالَ: فَاذْهَبْ فَأَرْسِلْ بِهَا إِلَيَّ،

فَانْطَلَقَ إِلَى سَارَّةَ فَقَالَ: إِنَّ هَذَا الْجَبَّارَ قَدْ سَأَلَنِي عَنْكِ، فَأَخْبَرْتُهُ أَنَّكِ أُخْتِي، فَلَا تُكَذِّبِينِي عِنْدَهُ، فَإِنَّكِ أُخْتِي فِي كِتَابِ اللهِ، وَإِنَّهُ لَيْسَ فِي الْأَرْضِ مُسْلِمٌ غَيْرِي وَغَيْرُكِ،

فَانْطَلَقَ بِهَا إِبْرَاهِيمُ ثُمَّ قَامَ يُصَلِّي،

فَلَمَّا أَنْ دَخَلَتْ عَلَيْهِ فَرَآهَا أَهْوَى إِلَيْهَا فَتَنَاوَلَهَا فَأُخِذَ أَخْذًا شَدِيدًا، فَقَالَ: ادْعِي اللهَ لِي وَلَا أَضُرُّكِ، فَدَعَتْ لَهُ،

فَأُرْسِلَ فَأَهْوَى إِلَيْهَا، فَتَنَاوَلَهَا فَأُخِذَ بِمِثْلِهَا أَوْ أَشَدَّ، فَفَعَلَ ذَلِكَ الثَّالِثَةَ، فَأُخِذَ فَذَكَرَ مِثْلَ الْمَرَّتَيْنِ الْأُولَيَيْنِ،

فَقَالَ: ادْعِي اللهَ فَلَا أُضُرَّكِ، فَدَعَتْ لَهُ فَأُرْسِلَ، ثُمَّ دَعَا أَدْنَى حُجَّابِهِ فَقَالَ: إِنَّكَ لَمْ تَأْتِنِي بِإِنْسَانٍ، وَلَكِنَّكَ أَتَيْتَنِي بِشَيْطَانٍ، أَخْرِجْهَا وَأَعْطِهَا هَاجَرَ. فَأُخْرِجَتْ وَأُعْطِيَتْ هَاجَرَ، فَأَقْبَلَتْ،

فَلَمَّا أَحَسَّ إِبْرَاهِيمُ بِمَجِيئِهَا، انْفَتَلَ مِنْ صَلَاتِهِ، وَقَالَ: مَهْيَمْ.

قَالَتْ: كَفَى اللهُ كَيْدَ الْكَافِرِ الْفَاجِرِ، وَأَخْدَمَنِي هَاجَر

and when he was traveling in the land of one of the tyrants, and Sarah was with him; when he made camp, a man came to the tyrant and said, "A man has made camp in your land and with him is a woman who is the most beautiful of people.''

The tyrant sent for Ibrahim, and asked him, "What is the relationship of this woman to you?''

He said, "She is my sister.''

The tyrant said, "Go and send her to me.''

So Ibrahim went to Sarah and said, "This tyrant asked me about you, and I told him that you are my sister, so do not let him think that I am lying. For you are indeed my sister according to the Book of Allah, and there are no Muslims on the earth apart from you and I.''

So Ibrahim brought her to him, then he stood and prayed.

When she entered upon the tyrant, he reached for her desirously once he saw her. But he suffered a severe seizure. So he said, "Pray to Allah for me and I will not harm you.'' So she prayed for him and it released him.

Then he reached for her desirously, but he was stricken similarly before or worse. This continued three times, and each time he said the same as he had said the first time.

Then he called the closest of his guards and said, "You have not brought me a human being, you have brought me a devil! Take her out and give her Hajar. So she was taken out and given Hajar, and she went back.

When Ibrahim realized that she had come back, he finished his prayer and turned around. He said, "What happened?''

She said, "Allah took care of the evil disbeliever's plot, and he gave me Hajar as a servant.''

Muhammad bin Sirin said,

"When Abu Hurayrah narrated this Hadith, he said, `This is your mother, O sons of the water of the heaven.' ''

64.

Previous 57-63

فَرَجَعُواْ إِلَى أَنفُسِهِمْ فَقَالُواْ إِنَّكُمْ أَنتُمُ الظَّـلِمُونَ

So they turned to themselves and said: "Verily, you are the wrongdoers.''

65.

 ثُمَّ نُكِسُواْ عَلَى رُءُوسِهِمْ لَقَدْ عَلِمْتَ مَا هَـؤُلاءِ يَنطِقُونَ

Then they turned to themselves: "Indeed you know well that these speak not!''

66.

 قَالَ أَفَتَعْبُدُونَ مِن دُونِ اللَّهِ مَا لاَ يَنفَعُكُمْ شَيْئاً وَلاَ يَضُرُّكُمْ

He said: "Do you then worship besides Allah, things that can neither profit you nor harm you!''

67.

أُفٍّ لَّكُمْ وَلِمَا تَعْبُدُونَ مِن دُونِ اللَّهِ أَفَلاَ تَعْقِلُونَ 

"Fie upon you, and upon that which you worship besides Allah! Have you then no sense!''  

Next 68-70   

The People's admission of their gods' incapability, and Ibrahim's preaching

Allah tells us that when Ibrahim said what he said, his people,

فَرَجَعُوا إِلَى أَنفُسِهِمْ ...

turned to themselves,

meaning, they blamed themselves for not taking precautions and protecting their gods. 

... فَقَالُوا إِنَّكُمْ أَنتُمُ الظَّالِمُونَ ﴿٦٤﴾

They said: Verily, you are the wrongdoers.

i.e., because you neglected them and did not guard them.

ثُمَّ نُكِسُوا عَلَى رُؤُوسِهِمْ ...

Then they turned to themselves,

means, they looked at the ground, and said:

... لَقَدْ عَلِمْتَ مَا هَؤُلَاء يَنطِقُونَ ﴿٦٥﴾

Indeed you (Ibrahim) know well that these speak not!

Qatadah said:

"The people admitted their guilt and confusion, and said, لَقَدْ عَلِمْتَ مَا هَؤُلَاء يَنطِقُونَ ("Indeed you know well that these speak not!'') `So how can you tell us to ask them, if they cannot speak and you know that they cannot speak.'

At this point, when they admitted that, Ibrahim said to them:

قَالَ أَفَتَعْبُدُونَ مِن دُونِ اللَّهِ مَا لَا يَنفَعُكُمْ شَيْئًا وَلَا يَضُرُّكُمْ ﴿٦٦

Do you then worship besides Allah, things that can neither profit you nor harm you!

meaning, if they cannot speak and they can neither benefit you nor harm you, then why do you worship them instead of Allah

أُفٍّ لَّكُمْ وَلِمَا تَعْبُدُونَ مِن دُونِ اللَّهِ أَفَلَا تَعْقِلُونَ ﴿٦٧

Fie upon you, and upon that which you worship besides Allah! Have you then no sense!

`Do you not realize the extent of the misguidance and extreme disbelief which you are following, which no one could accept but one who is an ignorant and evil wrongdoer.' He defeated them in argument and left them with no way out.

Allah said:

وَتِلْكَ حُجَّتُنَآ ءَاتَيْنَـهَآ إِبْرَهِيمَ عَلَى قَوْمِهِ

And that was Our proof which We gave Ibrahim against his people. (6:83)

68.

Previous 64-67

 قَالُواْ حَرِّقُوهُ وَانصُرُواْ ءَالِهَتَكُمْ إِن كُنتُمْ فَـعِلِينَ

They said: "Burn him and help your gods, if you will be doing.''

69.

 قُلْنَا ينَارُ كُونِى بَرْداً وَسَلَـمَا عَلَى إِبْرَهِيمَ

We said: "O fire! Be you cool and safety for Ibrahim!''

70.

 وَأَرَادُواْ بِهِ كَيْداً فَجَعَلْنَـهُمُ الاٌّخْسَرِينَ

And they wanted to harm him, but We made them the worst losers.    

Next 71-75   

How Ibrahim was thrown into the Fire and how Allah controlled it

When their arguments were refuted and their incapability became clear, when truth was made manifest and falsehood was defeated, they resorted to using their power and strength, and;

قَالُوا حَرِّقُوهُ وَانصُرُوا آلِهَتَكُمْ إِن كُنتُمْ فَاعِلِينَ ﴿٦٨

They said: "Burn him and help your gods, if you will be doing.''

So they gathered together a huge amount of wood.

As-Suddi said,

"I if a woman was sick, she would make a vow that if she recovered she would bring wood to burn Ibrahim. Then they made a hole in the ground and set it aflame, and it burned with huge sparks and immense flames. There had never been a fire like it. They put Ibrahim, peace be upon him, into a catapult, at the suggestion of a nomadic Kurdish man from Persia.''

Shu`ayb Al-Jaba'i said,

"His name was Hayzan, and Allah caused the earth to swallow him up, and he will remain sinking into it until the Day of Resurrection.

When they threw him he said, `Sufficient for me is Allah, and He is the best disposer of affairs.'''

This is similar to what Al-Bukhari recorded from Ibn Abbas that Ibrahim said,

"`Sufficient for me is Allah, and He is the best disposer of affairs,''

when he was thrown into the fire, and Muhammad said it when they said:

إِنَّ النَّاسَ قَدْ جَمَعُواْ لَكُمْ فَاخْشَوْهُمْ فَزَادَهُمْ إِيمَـناً وَقَالُواْ حَسْبُنَا اللَّهُ وَنِعْمَ الْوَكِيلُ

Verily, the people have gathered against you, therefore, fear them. But it increased them in faith, and they said: "Allah is sufficient for us, and He is the best disposer of affairs.'' (3:173)

Sa`id bin Jubayr reported that Ibn Abbas said:

"When Ibrahim was thrown into the fire, the keeper (angel) of the rain said: `When will I be commanded to send rain.' But the command of Allah was more swift.

قُلْنَا يَا نَارُ كُونِي بَرْدًا وَسَلَامًا عَلَى إِبْرَاهِيمَ ﴿٦٩

Allah said: O fire! Be you cool and safety for Ibrahim!

and there was no fire left on earth that was not extinguished.''

Ibn Abbas and Abu Al-Aliyah said:

"Were it not for the fact that Allah said, وَسَلَامًا   (and safety), Ibrahim would have been harmed by its coldness.''

Qatadah said:

"On that day there was no creature that did not try to extinguish the fire for Ibrahim, except for the gecko.''

Az-Zuhri said:

"The Prophet commanded that it should be killed, and called it a harmful vermin.''

وَأَرَادُوا بِهِ كَيْدًا فَجَعَلْنَاهُمُ الْأَخْسَرِينَ ﴿٧٠

And they wanted to harm him, but We made them the worst losers.

they were defeated and humiliated, because they wanted to plot against the Prophet of Allah, but Allah planned against them and saved him from the fire, and thus they were defeated.

 

71.

Previous 68-70

وَنَجَّيْنَـهُ وَلُوطاً إِلَى الاٌّرْضِ الَّتِى بَارَكْنَا فِيهَا لِلْعَـلَمِينَ

And We rescued him and Lut to the land which We have blessed for the nations.

72.

 وَوَهَبْنَا لَهُ إِسْحَـقَ وَيَعْقُوبَ نَافِلَةً وَكُلاًّ جَعَلْنَا صَـلِحِينَ

And We bestowed upon him Ishaq, and Ya`qub Nafilatan. Each one We made righteous.

73.

 وَجَعَلْنَاهُمْ أَئِمَّةً يَهْدُونَ بِأَمْرِنَا وَأَوْحَيْنَآ إِلَيْهِمْ فِعْلَ الْخَيْرَتِ وَإِقَامَ الصَّلوة وَإِيتَآءَ الزَّكَـوةِ وَكَانُواْ لَنَا عَـبِدِينَ

And We made them leaders, guiding by Our command, and We revealed to them the doing of good deeds, performing Salah, and the giving of Zakah, and of Us (Alone) they were the worshippers.

74.

وَلُوطاً آتَيْنَـهُ حُكْماً وَعِلْماً وَنَجَّيْنَـهُ مِنَ الْقَرْيَةِ الَّتِى كَانَت تَّعْمَلُ الْخَبَـئِثَ

And (remember) Lut, We gave him wisdom and knowledge, and We saved him from the town who practiced Al-Khaba'ith.

إِنَّهُمْ كَانُواْ قَوْمَ سَوْءٍ فَـسِقِينَ

Verily, they were a people given to evil, and were rebellious.

75.

وَأَدْخَلْنَـهُ فِى رَحْمَتِنَآ إِنَّهُ مِنَ الصَّـلِحِينَ

And We admitted him to Our mercy; truly, he was of the righteous.

Next 76-77   

The Migration of Ibrahim to Ash-Sham (Greater Syria), accompanied by Lut

Allah tells:

وَنَجَّيْنَاهُ وَلُوطًا إِلَى الْأَرْضِ الَّتِي بَارَكْنَا فِيهَا لِلْعَالَمِينَ ﴿٧١

And We rescued him and Lut to the land which We have blessed for the nations.

Allah tells us that He saved Ibrahim from the fire lit by his people, and brought him out from among them, migrating to the land of Ash-Sham, to the sacred regions thereof.

وَوَهَبْنَا لَهُ إِسْحَقَ وَيَعْقُوبَ نَافِلَةً ...

And We bestowed upon him Ishaq, and Ya`qub Nafilatan.

Ata' and Mujahid said, "Nafilatan means as a gift.''

Ibn Abbas, Qatadah and Al-Hakam bin `Uyaynah said, "The gift of a son who has a son,''

meaning that Yaqub was the son of Ishaq, as Allah says:

فَبَشَّرْنَـهَا بِإِسْحَـقَ وَمِن وَرَآءِ إِسْحَـقَ يَعْقُوبَ

But We gave her glad tidings of Ishaq, and after Ishaq, of Yaqub. (11:71)

Abdur-Rahman bin Zayd bin Aslam said,

"He asked for one (son), and said, رَبِّ هَبْ لِى مِنَ الصَّـلِحِينِ "My Lord! Grant me from the righteous.'' (37:100)So Allah gave him Ishaq, and gave him Yaqub in addition.

... وَكُلًّا جَعَلْنَا صَالِحِينَ ﴿٧٢﴾

Each one We made righteous.

means, both of them were good and righteous people.

وَجَعَلْنَاهُمْ أَئِمَّةً ...

And We made them leaders,

means, examples to be followed.

... يَهْدُونَ بِأَمْرِنَا ...

guiding by Our command,

inviting to Him by His leave.

Allah says:

... وَأَوْحَيْنَا إِلَيْهِمْ فِعْلَ الْخَيْرَاتِ وَإِقَامَ الصَّلَاةِ وَإِيتَاء الزَّكَاةِ ...

and We revealed to them the doing of good deeds, performing Salah, and the giving of Zakah,

Here the general is followed by the specific.

... وَكَانُوا لَنَا عَابِدِينَ ﴿٧٣﴾

and of Us (Alone) they were the worshippers.

means, they did what they enjoined others to do.

The Prophet Lut

Then Allah mentions Lut, whose full name was Lut bin Haran bin Azar. He believed in Ibrahim and followed him, and migrated with him, as Allah says:

فَـَامَنَ لَهُ لُوطٌ وَقَالَ إِنِّى مُهَاجِرٌ إِلَى رَبِّى

So Lut believed in him. He (Ibrahim) said: "I will emigrate for the sake of my Lord.'' (29:26)

Allah gave him wisdom and knowledge; He sent Revelation to him, made him a Prophet and appointed him to Sadum (Sodom) and its vicinity, but they rejected him and resisted him, so Allah utterly destroyed them, as He tells us in several places in His Book.

Allah says;

وَلُوطًا آتَيْنَاهُ حُكْمًا وَعِلْمًا وَنَجَّيْنَاهُ مِنَ الْقَرْيَةِ الَّتِي كَانَت تَّعْمَلُ الْخَبَائِثَ إِنَّهُمْ كَانُوا قَوْمَ سَوْءٍ فَاسِقِينَ ﴿٧٤

and We saved him from the town who practiced Al-Khaba'ith. Verily, they were a people given to evil, and were rebellious.

وَأَدْخَلْنَاهُ فِي رَحْمَتِنَا إِنَّهُ مِنَ الصَّالِحِينَ ﴿٧٥

And We admitted him to Our mercy; truly, he was of the righteous.

76.

Previous 71-75

 وَنُوحاً إِذْ نَادَى مِن قَبْلُ فَاسْتَجَبْنَا لَهُ فَنَجَّيْنَـهُ وَأَهْلَهُ مِنَ الْكَرْبِ الْعَظِيمِ

And (remember) Nuh, when he cried (to Us) aforetime. We answered to his invocation and saved him and his family from the great distress.

77.

 وَنَصَرْنَـهُ مِنَ الْقَوْمِ الَّذِينَ كَذَّبُواْ بِـَايَـتِنَا إِنَّهُمْ كَانُواْ قَوْمَ سَوْءٍ فَأَغْرَقْنَـهُمْ أَجْمَعِينَ

We helped him against the people who denied Our Ayat. Verily, they were a people given to evil. So We drowned them all.    

Next 78-82   

Nuh and His People

Allah tells us how He responded to His servant and Messenger Nuh, peace be upon him, when he prayed to Him against his people for their disbelief in him:

فَدَعَا رَبَّهُ أَنُّى مَغْلُوبٌ فَانتَصِرْ

Then he invoked his Lord (saying): "I have been overcome, so help (me)!'' (54:10)

وَقَالَ نُوحٌ رَّبِّ لاَ تَذَرْ عَلَى الاٌّرْضِ مِنَ الْكَـفِرِينَ دَيَّاراً  - إِنَّكَ إِن تَذَرْهُمْ يُضِلُّواْ عِبَادَكَ وَلاَ يَلِدُواْ إِلاَّ فَاجِراً كَفَّاراً

And Nuh said: "My Lord! Leave not any inhabitant of the disbelievers on the earth! If You leave them, they will mislead Your servants, and they will beget none but wicked disbelievers. (71:26-27)

So Allah says here,

وَنُوحًا إِذْ نَادَى مِن قَبْلُ فَاسْتَجَبْنَا لَهُ فَنَجَّيْنَاهُ وَأَهْلَهُ ...

And (remember) Nuh, when he cried (to Us) aforetime. We answered to his invocation and saved him and his family,

meaning, those who believed with him, as Allah says elsewhere:

وَأَهْلَكَ إِلاَّ مَن سَبَقَ عَلَيْهِ الْقَوْلُ وَمَنْ ءَامَنَ وَمَآ ءَامَنَ مَعَهُ إِلاَّ قَلِيلٌ

...and your family -- except him against whom the Word has already gone forth -- and those who believe. And none believed with him, except a few. (11: 40)

... مِنَ الْكَرْبِ الْعَظِيمِ ﴿٧٦﴾

from the great distress.

meaning, from difficulty, rejection and harm.

For he remained among them for one thousand years less fifty, calling them to Allah, and no one had believed in him except for a few. His people were plotting against him and advising one another century after century, generation after generation, to oppose him.

وَنَصَرْنَاهُ مِنَ الْقَوْمِ ...

We helped him against the people,

means, `We saved him and helped him against the people,'

... الَّذِينَ كَذَّبُوا بِآيَاتِنَا إِنَّهُمْ كَانُوا قَوْمَ سَوْءٍ فَأَغْرَقْنَاهُمْ أَجْمَعِينَ ﴿٧٧﴾

who denied Our Ayat. Verily, they were a people given to evil. So We drowned them all.

meaning, Allah drowned them all, and not one of them was left on the face of the earth, as their Prophet had prayed would happen to them.

78.

Previous 76-77

وَدَاوُودَ وَسُلَيْمَـنَ إِذْ يَحْكُمَانِ فِى الْحَرْثِ إِذْ نَفَشَتْ فِيهِ غَنَمُ الْقَوْمِ وَكُنَّا لِحُكْمِهِمْ شَـهِدِينَ 

And (remember) Dawud and Suleiman, when they gave judgement in the case of the field in which the sheep of certain people had Nafashat; and We were witness to their judgement.

79.

 فَفَهَّمْنَـهَا سُلَيْمَـنَ وَكُلاًّ ءَاتَيْنَا حُكْماً وَعِلْماً

And We made Suleiman to understand (the case); and to each of them We gave wisdom (Hukm) and knowledge.

وَسَخَّرْنَا مَعَ دَاوُودَ الْجِبَالَ يُسَبِّحْنَ وَالطَّيْرَ

And We subjected the mountains and the birds to glorify Our praises along with Dawud.

وَكُنَّا فَـعِلِينَ

And it was We Who were the doer (of all these things).

80.

 وَعَلَّمْنَاهُ صَنْعَةَ لَبُوسٍ لَّكُمْ لِتُحْصِنَكُمْ مِّن بَأْسِكُمْ فَهَلْ أَنتُمْ شَـكِرُونَ

And We taught him the making of metal coats of mail (for battles), to protect you in your fighting. Are you then grateful!

81.

وَلِسُلَيْمَـنَ الرِّيحَ عَاصِفَةً تَجْرِى بِأَمْرِهِ إِلَى الاٌّرْضِ الَّتِى بَارَكْنَا فِيهَا

And to Suleiman (We subjected) the wind strongly raging, running by his command towards the land which We had blessed.

وَكُنَّا بِكُلِّ شَىْءٍ عَـلِمِينَ

And of everything We are the All-Knower.

82.

وَمِنَ الشَّيَـطِينِ مَن يَغُوصُونَ لَهُ وَيَعْمَلُونَ عَمَلاً دُونَ ذلِكَ

And of the Shayatin were some who dived for him, and did other work besides that;

وَكُنَّا لَهُمْ حَـفِظِينَ 

and it was We Who guarded them.  

Next 83-84   

Dawud and Suleiman and the Signs which They were given; the Story of the People whose Sheep pastured at Night in the Field

 (Abu) Ishaq narrated from Murrah from Ibn Mas`ud: "That crop was grapes, bunches of which were dangling.''

This was also the view of Shurayh.

Ibn Abbas said: "Nafash means grazing.''

Shurayh, Az-Zuhri and Qatadah said: "Nafash only happens at night.''

Qatadah added, "(and) Al-Haml is grazing during the day.''

Allah tells:

وَدَاوُودَ وَسُلَيْمَانَ إِذْ يَحْكُمَانِ فِي الْحَرْثِ إِذْ نَفَشَتْ فِيهِ غَنَمُ الْقَوْمِ ...

And (remember) Dawud and Suleiman, when they gave judgement in the case of the field in which the sheep of certain people had pastured at night;

Ibn Jarir recorded that Ibn Mas`ud said:

"Grapes which had grown and their bunches were spoiled by the sheep. Dawud (David) ruled that the owner of the grapes should keep the sheep.

Suleiman (Solomon) said, `Not like this, O Prophet of Allah!'

(Dawud) said, `How then'

(Suleiman) said: `Give the grapes to the owner of the sheep and let him tend them until they grow back as they were, and give the sheep to the owner of the grapes and let him benefit from them until the grapes have grown back as they were. Then the grapes should be given back to their owner, and the sheep should be given back to their owner.'

This is what Allah said: فَفَهَّمْنَاهَا سُلَيْمَانَ (And We made Suleiman to understand (the case).''

This was also reported by Al-`Awfi from Ibn Abbas.

... وَكُنَّا لِحُكْمِهِمْ شَاهِدِينَ ﴿٧٨﴾

and We were witness to their judgement.

فَفَهَّمْنَـهَا  سُلَيْمَانَ وَكُلًّا آتَيْنَا حُكْمًا وَعِلْمًا ...

And We made Suleiman to understand (the case); and to each of them We gave wisdom and knowledge.

Ibn Abi Hatim recorded that;

when Iyas bin Mu`awiyah was appointed as a judge, Al-Hasan came to him and found Iyas weeping. (Al-Hasan) said, "Why are you weeping?''

(Iyas) said, "O Abu Sa`id, What I heard about judges among them a judge is he, who studies a case and his judgment is wrong, so he will go to Hell; another judge is he who is biased because of his own whims and desires, so he will go to Hell; and the other judge he who studies a case and gives the right judgement, so he will go to Paradise.''

Al-Hasan Al-Basari said: "But what Allah tells us about Dawud and Suleiman (peace be upon them both) and the Prophets and whatever judgments they made proves that what these people said is wrong.

Allah says: وَدَاوُودَ وَسُلَيْمَانَ إِذْ يَحْكُمَانِ فِي الْحَرْثِ إِذْ نَفَشَتْ فِيهِ غَنَمُ الْقَوْمِ وَكُنَّا لِحُكْمِهِمْ شَاهِدِينَ  And (remember) Dawud and Suleiman, when they gave judgement in the case of the field in which the sheep of certain people had pastured at night; and We were witness to their judgement.

Allah praised Suleiman but He did not condemn Dawud.''

Then he -- Al-Hasan -- said, "Allah enjoins three things upon the judges:

-                      not to sell thereby for some miserable price;

-                      not to follow their own whims and desires; and

-                      not to fear anyone concerning their judgments.''

Then he recited:

يدَاوُودُ إِنَّا جَعَلْنَـكَ خَلِيفَةً فِى الاٌّرْضِ فَاحْكُمْ بَيْنَ النَّاسِ بِالْحَقِّ وَلاَ تَتَّبِعِ الْهَوَى فَيُضِلَّكَ عَن سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ

O Dawud! Verily, We have placed you as a successor on the earth; so judge you between men in truth and follow not your desire -- for it will mislead you from the path of Allah. (38:26)

فَلاَ تَخْشَوُاْ النَّاسَ وَاخْشَوْنِ

Therefore fear not men but fear Me. (5:44)

وَلاَ تَشْتَرُواْ بِـَايَـتِى ثَمَناً قَلِيلاً

and sell not My Ayat for a miserable price. (5:44)

I say: with regard to the Prophets (peace be upon them all), all of them were infallible and supported by Allah. With regard to others, it is recorded in Sahih Al-Bukhari from `Amir bin Al-`As that the Messenger of Allah said:

إِذَا اجْتَهَدَ الْحَاكِمُ فَأَصَابَ، فَلَهُ أَجْرَانِ،

وَإِذَا اجْتَهَدَ فَأَخْطَأَ، فَلَهُ أَجْر

If the judge does his best, studies the case and reaches the right conclusion, he will have two rewards.

If he does his best, studies the case and reaches the wrong conclusion, he will have one reward.

This Hadith refutes the idea of Iyas, who thought that if he did his best, studied the case and reached the wrong conclusion, he would go to Hell.

And Allah knows best.

Similar to story in the Qur'an is the report recorded by Imam Ahmad in his Musnad from Abu Hurayrah, who said that the Messenger of Allah said:

بَيْنَمَا امْرَأَتَانِ مَعَهُمَا ابْنَانِ لَهُمَا، إِذْ جَاءَ الذِّئْبُ فَأَخَذَ أَحَدَ الْابْنَيْنِ فَتَحَاكَمَتَا إِلَىىَداوُدَ، فَقَضَى بِهِ لِلْكُبْرَى، فَخَرَجَتَا فَدَعَاهُمَا سُلَيْمَانُ فَقَالَ: هَاتُوا السِّكِّينَ أَشُقُّهُ بَيْنَكُمَا: فَقَالَتِ الصُّغْرَى: يَرْحَمُكَ اللهُ هُوَ ابْنُهَا لَا تَشُقَّهُ، فَقَضَى بِهِ لِلصُّغْرَى

There were two women who each had a son. The wolf came and took one of the children, and they referred their dispute to Dawud. He ruled that the (remaining) child belonged to the older woman. They left, then Suleiman called them and said, "Give me a sword and I will divide him between the two of you.''

The younger woman said, "May Allah have mercy on you! He is her child, do not cut him up!''

So he ruled that the child belonged to the younger woman.

This was also recorded by Al-Bukhari and Muslim in their Sahihs.

An-Nasa'i also devoted a chapter to this in the Book of Judgments.

... وَسَخَّرْنَا مَعَ دَاوُودَ الْجِبَالَ يُسَبِّحْنَ وَالطَّيْرَ ...

And We subjected the mountains and the birds to glorify Our praises along with Dawud.

This refers to the beauty of his voice when he recited his Book, Az-Zabur. When he recited it in a beautiful manner, the birds would stop and hover in the air, and would repeat after him, and the mountains would respond and echo his words.

... وَكُنَّا فَاعِلِينَ ﴿٧٩﴾

And it was We Who were the doer (of all these things).

The Prophet passed by Abu Musa Al-Ash`ari while he was reciting Qur'an at night, and he had a very beautiful voice, he stopped and listened to his recitation, and said:

لَقَدْ أُوتِيَ هَذَا مِزْمَارًا مِنْ مَزَامِيرِ آلِ دَاوُد

This man has been given one of the wind instruments (nice voices) of the family of Dawud.

He said: "O Messenger of Allah, if I had known that you were listening, I would have done my best for you.''

وَعَلَّمْنَاهُ صَنْعَةَ لَبُوسٍ لَّكُمْ لِتُحْصِنَكُم مِّن بَأْسِكُمْ ...

And We taught him the making of metal coats of mail, to protect you in your fighting.

meaning, the manufacture of chain-armor.

Qatadah said that before that, they used to wear plated armor; he was the first one to make rings of chain-armor. This is like the Ayah:

وَأَلَنَّا لَهُ الْحَدِيدَأَنِ اعْمَلْ سَـبِغَـتٍ وَقَدِّرْ فِى السَّرْدِ

And We made the iron soft for him. Saying: "Make you perfect coats of mail, and balance well the rings of chain armor.'' (34:10-11),

meaning, do not make the pegs so loose that the rings (of chain mail) will shake, or make it so tight that they will not be able to move at all.

Allah says:

... لِتُحْصِنَكُم مِّن بَأْسِكُمْ ...

to protect you in your fighting.

meaning, in your battles.

... فَهَلْ أَنتُمْ شَاكِرُونَ ﴿٨٠﴾

Are you then grateful. means,

`Allah blessed you when He inspired His servant Dawud and taught him that for your sake.'

The Power of Suleiman is unparalleled

And Allah tells: 

وَلِسُلَيْمَانَ الرِّيحَ عَاصِفَةً ...

And to Suleiman (We subjected) the wind strongly raging,

means, `We subjugated the strong wind to Suleiman.'

... تَجْرِي بِأَمْرِهِ إِلَى الْأَرْضِ الَّتِي بَارَكْنَا فِيهَا ...

running by his command towards the land which We had blessed.

meaning, the land of Ash-Sham (Greater Syria).

... وَكُنَّا بِكُلِّ شَيْءٍ عَالِمِينَ ﴿٨١﴾

And of everything We are the All-Knower.

He had a mat made of wood on which he would place all the equipment of his kingship; horses, camels, tents and troops, then he would command the wind to carry it, and he would go underneath it and it would carry him aloft, shading him and protecting him from the heat, until it reached wherever he wanted to go in the land. Then it would come down and deposit his equipment and entourage.

Allah says:

فَسَخَّرْنَا لَهُ الرِّيحَ تَجْرِى بِأَمْرِهِ رُخَآءً حَيْثُ أَصَابَ

So, We subjected to him the wind; it blew gently by his order whithersoever he willed. (38:36)

غُدُوُّهَا شَهْرٌ وَرَوَاحُهَا شَهْرٌ

its morning was a month's (journey), and its afternoon was a month's. (34:12)

وَمِنَ الشَّيَاطِينِ مَن يَغُوصُونَ لَهُ ...

And of the Shayatin were some who dived for him,

means, they dived into the water to retrieve pearls, jewels, etc., for him.

... وَيَعْمَلُونَ عَمَلًا دُونَ ذَلِكَ ...

and did other work besides that;

This is like the Ayah:

وَالشَّيَـطِينَ كُلَّ بَنَّآءٍ وَغَوَّاصٍ  - وَءَاخَرِينَ مُقَرَّنِينَ فِى الاٌّصْفَادِ

And also the Shayatin, every kind of builder and diver. And also others bound in fetters. (38:37-38)

... وَكُنَّا لَهُمْ حَافِظِينَ ﴿٨٢﴾

and it was We Who guarded them.

means, Allah protected him lest any of these Shayatin did him any harm. All of them were subject to his control and domination, and none of them would have dared to approach him. He was in charge of them and if he wanted, he could set free or detain whomever among them he wished.

Allah says:

وَءَاخَرِينَ مُقَرَّنِينَ فِى الاٌّصْفَادِ

And also others bound in fetters. (38:38)

83.

Previous 78-82

وَأَيُّوبَ إِذْ نَادَى رَبَّهُ

And (remember) Ayub, when he cried to his Lord:

أَنِّى مَسَّنِىَ الضُّرُّ وَأَنتَ أَرْحَمُ الرَّاحِمِينَ

"Verily, distress has seized me, and You are the Most Merciful of all those who show mercy.''

84.

 فَاسْتَجَبْنَا لَهُ فَكَشَفْنَا مَا بِهِ مِن ضُرٍّ وَءَاتَيْنَـهُ أَهْلَهُ وَمِثْلَهُمْ مَّعَهُمْ رَحْمَةً مِّنْ عِندِنَا وَذِكْرَى لِلْعَـبِدِينَ

So We answered his call, and We removed the distress that was on him, and We restored his family to him, and the like thereof along with them as a mercy from Ourselves and a Reminder for all those who worship Us.  

Next 85-86   

The Prophet Ayub

Allah tells:

وَأَيُّوبَ إِذْ نَادَى رَبَّهُ أَنِّي مَسَّنِيَ الضُّرُّ وَأَنتَ أَرْحَمُ الرَّاحِمِينَ ﴿٨٣

And (remember) Ayub, when he cried to his Lord: "Verily, distress has seized me, and You are the Most Merciful of all those who show mercy.''

فَاسْتَجَبْنَا لَهُ فَكَشَفْنَا مَا بِهِ مِن ضُرٍّ ...

So We answered his call, and We removed the distress that was on him,

Allah tells us about Ayub (Job), and the trials that struck him, affecting his wealth, children and physical health.

He had plenty of livestock, cattle and crops, many children and beautiful houses, and he was tested in these things, losing every thing he had. Then he was tested with regard to his body, and he was left alone on the edge of the city and there was no one who treated him with compassion apart from his wife, who took care of him. It was said that it reached the stage where she was in need, so she started to serve people (to earn money) for his sake. The Prophet said:

أَشَدُّ النَّاسِ بَلَاءً الْأَنْبِيَاءُ، ثُمَّ الصَّالِحُونَ، ثُمَّ الْأَمْثَلُ فَالْأَمْثَل

The people who are tested the most severely are the Prophets, then the righteous, then the next best and the next best.

According to another Hadith:

يُبْتَلَى الرَّجُلُ عَلَى قَدْرِ دِينِهِ، فَإِنْ كَانَ فِي دِينِهِ صَلَابَةٌ زِيدَ فِي بَلَائِه

A man will be tested according to his level of religious commitment; the stronger his religious commitment, the more severe will be his test.

The Prophet of Allah, Ayub, upon him be peace, had the utmost patience, and he is the best example of that.

Yazid bin Maysarah said:

"When Allah tested Ayub, upon him be peace, with the loss of his family, wealth and children, and he had nothing left, he started to focus upon the remembrance of Allah, and he said:

`I praise You, the Lord of lords, Who bestowed His kindness upon me and gave me wealth and children, and there was no corner of my heart that was not filled with attachment to these worldly things, then You took all of that away from me and You emptied my heart, and there is nothing to stand between me and You. If my enemy Iblis knew of this, he would be jealous of me.'

When Iblis heard of this, he became upset. And Ayub, upon him be peace, said:

`O Lord, You gave me wealth and children, and there was no one standing at my door complaining of some wrong I had done to him. You know that. I used to have a bed prepared for me, but I forsook it and said to myself: You were not created to lie on a comfortable bed. I only forsook that for Your sake.'''

This was recorded by Ibn Abi Hatim.

Ibn Abi Hatim recorded from Abu Hurayrah that the Prophet said:

لَمَّا عَافَى اللهُ أَيُّوبَ أَمْطَرَ عَلَيْهِ جَرَادًا مِنْ ذَهَبٍ، فَجَعَلَ يَأْخُذُ مِنْهُ بِيَدِهِ وَيَجْعَلُهُ فِي ثَوْبِهِ، قَالَ: فَقِيلَ لَهُ: يَا أَيُّوبُ أَمَا تَشْبَعُ؟ قَالَ: يَا رَبِّ وَمَنْنَيشْبَعُ مِنْ رَحْمَتِك

When Allah healed Ayub, He sent upon him a shower of golden locusts, and he started to pick them up and gather them in his garment. It was said to him, "O Ayub, have you not had enough!''

He said, "O Lord, who can ever have enough of Your mercy!

The basis of this Hadith is recorded in the Two Sahihs, as we shall see below.

... وَآتَيْنَاهُ أَهْلَهُ وَمِثْلَهُم مَّعَهُمْ ...

and We restored his family to him (that he had lost) and the like thereof along with them.

It was reported that Ibn Abbas said: "They themselves were restored to him.''

This was also narrated by Al-`Awfi from Ibn Abbas.

Something similar was also narrated from Ibn Mas`ud and Mujahid, and this was the view of Al-Hasan and Qatadah.

Mujahid said:

"It was said to him, `O Ayub, your family will be with you in Paradise; if you want, We will bring them back to you, or if you want, We will leave them for you in Paradise and will compensate you with others like them.'

He said, `No, leave them for me in Paradise.' So they were left for him in Paradise, and he was compensated with others like them in this world.''

... رَحْمَةً مِّنْ عِندِنَا ...

as a mercy from Ourselves,

means, `We did that to him as a mercy from Allah towards him.'

... وَذِكْرَى لِلْعَابِدِينَ ﴿٨٤﴾

and a Reminder for all those who worship Us.

means, `We made him an example lest those who are beset by trials think that We do that to them because We do not care for them, so that they may take him as an example of patience in accepting the decrees of Allah and bearing the trials with which He tests His servants as He wills.'

And Allah has the utmost wisdom with regard to that.

85.

Previous 83-84

 وَإِسْمَـعِيلَ وَإِدْرِيسَ وَذَا الْكِفْلِ كُلٌّ مِّنَ الصَّـبِرِينَ

And (remember) Isma`il, Idris and Dhul-Kifl: All were from among the patient.

86.

 وَأَدْخَلْنَـهُمْ فِى رَحْمَتِنَا إِنَّهُمْ مِّنَ الصَّـلِحِينَ

21:86 And We admitted them to Our mercy. Verily, they were of the righteous.  

Next 87-88   

 Allah tells:

وَإِسْمَاعِيلَ وَإِدْرِيسَ وَذَا الْكِفْلِ كُلٌّ مِّنَ الصَّابِرِينَ ﴿٨٥

And (remember) Ismail, Idris and Dhul-Kifl: All were from among the patient.

وَأَدْخَلْنَاهُمْ فِي رَحْمَتِنَا إِنَّهُم مِّنَ الصَّالِحِينَ ﴿٨٦

And We admitted them to Our mercy. Verily, they were of the righteous.

Ismail was the son of Ibrahim Al-Khalil, peace be upon them both. He has already been mentioned in Surah Maryam, where mention was also made of Idris.

From the context and the fact that Dhul-Kifl is mentioned alongside Prophets, it appears that he was also a Prophet. Others say that he was a righteous man, a just king and a fair judge.

Ibn Jarir refrained from making any decisive comment.

And Allah knows best.

87.

Previous 85-86

وَذَا النُّونِ إِذ ذَّهَبَ مُغَـضِباً فَظَنَّ أَن لَّن نَّقْدِرَ عَلَيْهِ فَنَادَى فِى الظُّلُمَـتِ

21:87 And (remember) Dhun-Nun, when he went off in anger, and imagined that We shall not punish him! But he cried through the darknesses (Zulumat) (saying):

أَن لاَّ إِلَـهَ إِلاَّ أَنتَ سُبْحَـنَكَ إِنِّى كُنتُ مِنَ الظَّـلِمِينَ

"There is no God but You, Glorified be You! Truly, I have been of the Zalimin wrongdoers.''

88.

  فَاسْتَجَبْنَا لَهُ وَنَجَّيْنَـهُ مِنَ الْغَمِّ

So We answered his call, and delivered him from the distress.

وَكَذلِكَ نُنجِـى الْمُؤْمِنِينَ

And thus We do deliver the believers.    

Next 89-90   

Yunus

This story is mentioned here, and in Surah As-Saffat and Surah Nun.

Yunus bin Matta, upon him be peace, was sent by Allah to the people of Nineveh, which was a town in the area of Mawsil (in northern Iraq). He called them to Allah, but they rejected him and persisted in their disbelief. So he left them in anger, threatening them with punishment after three (days).

When they realized that he was telling the truth and that a Prophet never lies, they went out to the desert with their children and cattle and flocks. They separated the mothers from their children, then they beseeched Allah and pleaded to Him, with the camels and their young groaning, the cows and their calves mooing, and the sheep and their lambs bleating, so Allah spared them from the punishment.

Allah says:

فَلَوْلاَ كَانَتْ قَرْيَةٌ ءَامَنَتْ فَنَفَعَهَآ إِيمَانُهَا إِلاَّ قَوْمَ يُونُسَ لَمَّآ ءَامَنُواْ كَشَفْنَا عَنْهُمْ عَذَابَ الخِزْىِ فِى الْحَيَوةَ الدُّنْيَا وَمَتَّعْنَاهُمْ إِلَى حِينٍ

Was there any town that believed (after seeing the punishment), and its faith saved it Except the people of Yunus;

when they believed, We removed from them the torment of disgrace in the life of the world, and permitted them to enjoy for a while. (10:98)

Yunus, meanwhile, went and traveled with some people on a ship, which was tossed about on the sea. The people were afraid that they would drown, so they cast lots to choose a man whom they would throw overboard.

The lot fell to Yunus, but they refused to throw him overboard. This happened a second and a third time.

Allah says:

فَسَـهَمَ فَكَانَ مِنَ الْمُدْحَضِينَ

Then he (agreed to) cast lots, and he was among the losers. (37:141)

meaning, the draw went against him, so Yunus stood up, removed his garment and cast himself into the sea.

Then Allah sent from the Green Sea -- according to what Ibn Mas`ud said -- a large fish which cleaved the oceans until it came and swallowed Yunus when he threw himself into the sea.

Allah inspired that large fish not to devour his flesh or break his bones, (as if He said) Yunus is not food for you, rather your belly is a prison for him.

وَذَا النُّونِ...

And (remember) Dhun-Nun,

Here Nun refers to the fish; it is correct for it to be attributed to him here.

... إِذ ذَّهَبَ مُغَاضِبًا ...

when he went off in anger,

Ad-Dahhak said: "Anger towards his people.''

... فَظَنَّ أَن لَّن نَّقْدِرَ عَلَيْهِ ...

and imagined that We shall not punish him!

meaning, constrict him in the belly of the fish.

Something similar to this was reported from Ibn Abbas, Mujahid, Ad-Dahhak and others.

This was the view favored by Ibn Jarir, and he quoted as evidence for that the Ayah:

وَمَن قُدِرَ عَلَيْهِ رِزْقُهُ فَلْيُنفِقْ مِمَّآ ءَاتَاهُ اللَّهُ لاَ يُكَلِّفُ اللَّهُ نَفْساً إِلاَّ مَآ ءَاتَاهَا سَيَجْعَلُ اللَّهُ بَعْدَ عُسْرٍ يُسْراً

and the man whose resources are restricted, let him spend according to what Allah has given him. Allah puts no burden on any person beyond what He has given him. Allah will grant after hardship, ease. (65:7)

... فَنَادَى فِي الظُّلُمَاتِ أَن لَّا إِلَهَ إِلَّا أَنتَ سُبْحَانَكَ إِنِّي كُنتُ مِنَ الظَّالِمِينَ ﴿٨٧

But he cried through the depths of darkness (saying): "There is no God but You, Glorified be You! Truly, I have been of the wrongdoers.''

Ibn Mas`ud said regarding the `depths of darkness':

"The darkness of the belly of the fish, the darkness of the sea and the darkness of the night.''

This was also narrated from Ibn Abbas, `Amr bin Maymun, Sa`id bin Jubayr, Muhammad bin Ka`b, Ad-Dahhak, Al-Hasan and Qatadah.

Salim bin Abu Al-Ja`d said: "The darkness of the fish in the belly of another fish in the darkness of the sea.''

Ibn Mas`ud, Ibn Abbas and others said:

"This was because the fish took him through the sea, cleaving it until it reached the bottom of the sea. Yunus heard the rocks at the bottom of the sea uttering glorification of Allah, at which point he said:

لاَّ إِلَـهَ إِلاَّ أَنتَ سُبْحَـنَكَ إِنِّى كُنتُ مِنَ الظَّـلِمِينَ

There is no God but You, Glorified be You! Truly, I have been of the wrongdoers.

`Awf Al-A`rabi said:

"When Yunus found himself in the belly of the fish, he thought that he had died. Then he moved his legs. When he moved his legs, he prostrated where he was, then he called out: `O Lord, I have taken a place of worship to You in a place which no other person has reached.'''

فَاسْتَجَبْنَا لَهُ وَنَجَّيْنَاهُ مِنَ الْغَمِّ ...

So `We answered his call, and delivered him from the distress.

means, `We brought him forth from the belly of the fish and from that darkness.'

... وَكَذَلِكَ نُنجِي الْمُؤْمِنِينَ ﴿٨٨﴾

And thus We do deliver the believers.

means, when they are in difficulty and they call upon Us and repent to Us, especially if they call upon Us with these words at the time of distress.

The leader of the Prophets encouraged us to call upon Allah with these words.

Imam Ahmad recorded that Sa`d bin Abi Waqqas, may Allah be pleased with him, said:

"I passed by Uthman bin Affan, may Allah be pleased with him, in the Masjid, and greeted him. He stared at me but did not return my Salam.

I went to Umar bin Al-Khattab and said: `O Commander of the faithful, has something happened in Islam!' I said that twice.

He said, `No, why do you ask?'

I said, `I passed by Uthman a short while ago in the Masjid and greeted him, and he stared at me but he did not return my Salam.'

Umar sent for Uthman and asked him, `Why did you not return your brother's Salam?'

He said, `That is not true.'

Sa`d said, `Yes it is.'

It reached the point where they both swore oaths. Then Uthman remembered and said, `Yes, you are right, I seek the forgiveness of Allah and I repent to Him. You passed by me a short while ago but I was preoccupied with thoughts of something I had heard from the Messenger of Allah, which I never think of but a veil comes down over my eyes and my heart.'

Sa`d said: `And I will tell you what it was. The Messenger of Allah told us the first part of the supplication then a Bedouin came and kept him busy, then the Messenger of Allah got up and I followed him. When I felt worried that he would enter his house, I stamped my feet. I turned to the Messenger of Allah , who said,

مَنْ هَذَا، أَبُو إِسْحَاقَ؟

Who is this Abu Ishaq?

I said, "Yes, O Messenger of Allah.''

He said, فَمَه (What is the matter)?

I said, "Nothing, by Allah, except that you told us the first part of the supplication, then this Bedouin came and kept you busy.''

He said,

نَعَمْ دَعْوَةُ ذِي النُّونِ إِذْ هُوَ فِي بَطْنِ الْحُوتِ

Yes, the supplication of Dhun-Nun when he was in the belly of the fish:

لاَّ إِلَـهَ إِلاَّ أَنتَ سُبْحَـنَكَ إِنِّى كُنتُ مِنَ الظَّـلِمِينَ

There is no God but You, Glorified be You! Truly, I have been of the wrongdoers.

فَإِنَّهُ لَمْ يَدْعُ بِهَا مُسْلِمٌ رَبَّهُ فِي شَيْءٍ قَطُّ إِلَّا اسْتَجَابَ لَه

No Muslim ever prays to his Lord with these words for anything, but He will answer his prayer.''

It was also recorded by At-Tirmidhi, and by An-Nasa'i in Al-Yawm wal-Laylah.

Ibn Abi Hatim recorded that Sa`d said that the Messenger of Allah said:

مَنْ دَعَا بِدُعَاءِ يُونُسَ اسْتُجِيبَ لَه

Whoever offers supplication in the words of the supplication of Yunus, will be answered.

Abu Sa`id said: "He was referring to: وَكَذَلِكَ نُنجِي الْمُؤْمِنِينَ   (And thus We do deliver the believers).''

89.

Previous 87-88

 وَزَكَرِيَّآ إِذْ نَادَى رَبَّهُ رَبِّ لاَ تَذَرْنِى فَرْداً وَأَنتَ خَيْرُ الْوَرِثِينَ

And (remember) Zakariyya, when he cried to his Lord: "O My Lord! Leave me not single (childless), though You are the Best of the inheritors.''

90.

 فَاسْتَجَبْنَا لَهُ وَوَهَبْنَا لَهُ يَحْيَى وَأَصْلَحْنَا لَهُ زَوْجَهُ

So We answered his call, and We bestowed upon him Yahya, and cured his wife for him.

إِنَّهُمْ كَانُواْ يُسَارِعُونَ فِى الْخَيْرَتِ وَيَدْعُونَنَا رَغَباً وَرَهَباً وَكَانُواْ لَنَا خـشِعِينَ

Verily, they used to hasten on to do good deeds, and they used to call on Us with hope and fear, and they were Khashi`in before Us.  

Next 91   

Zakariyya and Yahya

Allah tells:

وَزَكَرِيَّا ...

And (remember) Zakariyya,

Allah tells us of His servant Zakariyya, who asked Allah to grant him a son who would be a Prophet after him. The story has already been given in detail at the beginning of Surah Maryam and also in Surah `Imran. Here an abbreviated version is given.

... إِذْ نَادَى رَبَّهُ ...

when he cried to his Lord,

means, in secret, hiding it from his people.

... رَبِّ لَا تَذَرْنِي فَرْدًا ...

O My Lord! Leave me not single,

means, with no child and no heir to stand among the people after me.

... وَأَنتَ خَيْرُ الْوَارِثِينَ ﴿٨٩﴾

though You are the Best of the inheritors.

This is a supplication and form of praise befitting the topic.

Allah says:

فَاسْتَجَبْنَا لَهُ وَوَهَبْنَا لَهُ يَحْيَى وَأَصْلَحْنَا لَهُ زَوْجَهُ ...

So We answered his call, and We bestowed upon him Yahya, and cured his wife for him.

Ibn Abbas, Mujahid and Sa`id bin Jubayr said: "She was barren and never had a child, then she gave birth.''

... إِنَّهُمْ كَانُوا يُسَارِعُونَ فِي الْخَيْرَاتِ ...

Verily, they used to hasten on to do good deeds,

means, acts of worship and acts of obedience towards Allah.

... وَيَدْعُونَنَا رَغَبًا وَرَهَبًا ...

and they used to call on Us with hope and fear,

Ath-Thawri said,

"Hoping for that (reward) which is with Us and fearing that (punishment) which is with Us.''

... وَكَانُوا لَنَا خَاشِعِينَ ﴿٩٠﴾

and they were Khashi`in before Us.

Ali bin Abi Talhah reported from Ibn Abbas that; this means, sincerely believing in that which was revealed by Allah.

Mujahid said: "Truly believing.''

Abu Al-`Aliyah said: "Fearing.''

Abu Sinan said: "Khushu` means the fear which should never leave our hearts.''

It was also reported from Mujahid that; "the Khashi`in are those who are humble.''

Al-Hasan, Qatadah and Ad-Dahhak said, "The Khashi`in are those who humble themselves before Allah.''

All of these suggestions are close in meaning.

91.

Previous 89-90

 وَالَّتِى أَحْصَنَتْ فَرْجَهَا فَنَفَخْنَا فِيهَا مِن رُّوحِنَا وَجَعَلْنَـهَا وَابْنَهَآ ءَايَةً لِّلْعَـلَمِينَ

And she who guarded her chastity, We breathed into her through Our Ruh, and We made her and her son a sign for nations.    

Next 92-94   

`Isa and Maryam the True Believer

Allah tells:

وَالَّتِي أَحْصَنَتْ فَرْجَهَا فَنَفَخْنَا فِيهَا مِن رُّوحِنَا وَجَعَلْنَاهَا وَابْنَهَا آيَةً لِّلْعَالَمِينَ ﴿٩١

And she who guarded her chastity, We breathed into her through Our Ruh, and We made her and her son a sign for nations.

Here Allah mentions the story of Maryam and her son `Isa, just after mentioning Zakariyya and his son Yahya, may peace be upon them all.

He mentions the story of Zakariyya first, followed by the story of Maryam because the one is connected to the other. The former is the story of a child being born to an old man of advanced years, from an old woman who had been barren and had never given birth when she was younger. Then Allah mentions the story of Maryam which is even more wondrous, for in this case a child was born from a female without (the involvement of) a male.

These stories also appear in Surah Al `Imran and in Surah Maryam. Here Allah mentions the story of Zakariyya and follows it with the story of Maryam, where He says:

وَالَّتِي أَحْصَنَتْ فَرْجَهَا ...

And she who guarded her chastity,

means, Maryam (peace be upon her).

This is like the Ayah in Surah At-Tahrim:

وَمَرْيَمَ ابْنَةَ عِمْرَانَ الَّتِى أَحْصَنَتْ فَرْجَهَا فَنَفَخْنَا فِيهِ مِن رُّوحِنَا

And Maryam, the daughter of `Imran who guarded her chastity. And We breathed into it (her garment) through Our Ruh. (66:12)

... وَجَعَلْنَاهَا وَابْنَهَا آيَةً لِّلْعَالَمِينَ

and We made her and her son a sign for the nations.

means, evidence that Allah is able to do all things and that He creates whatever He wills; verily, His command, when He intends a thing, is only that He says to it, "Be'' -- and it is!

This is like the Ayah:

وَلِنَجْعَلَهُ ءَايَةً لِّلْنَّاسِ

And (We wish) to appoint him as a sign to mankind. (19:21)

92.

Previous 91

 إِنَّ هَـذِهِ أُمَّتُكُمْ أُمَّةً وَاحِدَةً وَأَنَاْ رَبُّكُمْ فَاعْبُدُونِ

Truly, this, your Ummah is one, and I am your Lord, therefore worship Me.

93.

 وَتَقَطَّعُواْ أَمْرَهُمْ بَيْنَهُمْ كُلٌّ إِلَيْنَا رَجِعُونَ

But they have broken up and differed in their religion among themselves. (And) they all shall return to Us.

94.

 فَمَن يَعْمَلْ مِنَ الصَّـلِحَـتِ وَهُوَ مُؤْمِنٌ فَلاَ كُفْرَانَ لِسَعْيِهِ وَإِنَّا لَهُ كَـتِبُونَ

So whoever does righteous good deeds while he is a believer, his efforts will not be rejected. Verily, We record it for him (in his Book of deeds).

Next 95-97   

Mankind is One Ummah

Allah says: 

إِنَّ هَذِهِ أُمَّتُكُمْ أُمَّةً وَاحِدَةً ...

Truly, this, your Ummah is one,

Ibn Abbas, Mujahid, Sa`id bin Jubayr, Qatadah and Abdur-Rahman bin Zayd bin Aslam said,

"Your religion is one religion.''

Al-Hasan Al-Basri said:

"In this Ayah, Allah explains to them what they should avoid and what they should do.''

Then He said, إِنَّ هَذِهِ أُمَّتُكُمْ أُمَّةً وَاحِدَةً Truly, this, your Ummah is one religion,

"Meaning, your path is one path. Certainly this is your Shariah (Divine Law) which I have clearly explained you.''

So Allah says:

... وَأَنَا رَبُّكُمْ فَاعْبُدُونِ ﴿٩٢﴾

and I am your Lord, therefore worship Me.

This is like the Ayah:

يأَيُّهَا الرُّسُلُ كُلُواْ مِنَ الطَّيِّبَـتِ وَاعْمَلُواْ صَـلِحاً

O (you) Messengers! Eat of the Tayyibat (good things) and do righteous deeds.) Until His saying, وَأَنَاْ رَبُّكُمْ فَاتَّقُونِ (And I am your Lord, so have Taqwa of Me). (23:51-52)

The Messenger of Allah said:

نَحْنُ مَعَاشِرَ الْأَنْبِيَاءِ أَوْلَادُ عَلَّاتٍ دِينُنَا وَاحِد

We Prophets are brothers from different mothers and our religion is one.

What is meant here is that they all worshipped Allah Alone with no partner or associate, although the Laws of each Messenger may have differed, as Allah says:

لِكُلٍّ جَعَلْنَا مِنكُمْ شِرْعَةً وَمِنْهَـجاً

To each among you, We have prescribed a Law and a clear way. (5:48)

وَتَقَطَّعُوا أَمْرَهُم بَيْنَهُمْ ...

But they have broken up and differed in their religion among themselves.

meaning, the nations were divided over their Messengers; some of them believed in them and some rejected them.

Allah says:

... كُلٌّ إِلَيْنَا رَاجِعُونَ ﴿٩٣﴾

(And) they all shall return to Us.

meaning, `on the Day of Resurrection, when We will requite each person according to his deeds. If they are good, then he will be rewarded and if they are evil then he will be punished.'

Allah says:

فَمَن  يَعْمَلْ مِنَ الصَّالِحَاتِ وَهُوَ مُؤْمِنٌ ...

So whoever does righteous good deeds while he is a believer,

meaning, his heart believes and his deeds are righteous.

... فَلَا كُفْرَانَ لِسَعْيِهِ ...

his efforts will not be rejected.

This is like the Ayah:

إِنَّا لاَ نُضِيعُ أَجْرَ مَنْ أَحْسَنَ عَمَلاً

certainly We shall not make the reward of anyone who does his deeds in the most perfect manner to be lost. (18:30)

which means, his efforts will not be wasted; they will be appreciated and not even a speck of dust's weight of injustice will be done.

Allah says:

... وَإِنَّا لَهُ كَاتِبُونَ ﴿٩٤﴾

Verily, We record it for him.

means, all his deeds are recorded and nothing of them at all is lost.

95.

Previous 92-94

 وَحَرَامٌ عَلَى قَرْيَةٍ أَهْلَكْنَـهَآ أَنَّهُمْ لاَ يَرْجِعُونَ

And a ban is laid on every town which We have destroyed that they shall not return.

96.

  حَتَّى إِذَا فُتِحَتْ يَأْجُوجُ وَمَأْجُوجُ وَهُمْ مِّن كُلِّ حَدَبٍ يَنسِلُونَ

Until, when Ya'juj and Ma'juj (Gog and Magog people) are let loose, and they swoop down from every Hadab.

97.

 وَاقْتَرَبَ الْوَعْدُ الْحَقُّ

And the true promise shall draw near.

فَإِذَا هِىَ شَـخِصَةٌ أَبْصَـرُ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُواْ يَوَيْلَنَا قَدْ كُنَّا فِى غَفْلَةٍ مِّنْ هَـذَا بَلْ كُنَّا ظَـلِمِينَ

Then, you shall see the eyes of the disbelievers fixedly staring in horror. (They will say:) "Woe to us! We were indeed heedless of this -- nay, but we were wrongdoers.''  

Next 98-103   

Those who have been destroyed, will never return to this World

Allah tells: 

وَحَرَامٌ عَلَى قَرْيَةٍ أَهْلَكْنَاهَا أَنَّهُمْ لَا يَرْجِعُونَ ﴿٩٥

And a ban is laid on every town which We have destroyed that they shall not return.

وَحَرَامٌ عَلَى قَرْيَةٍ ...

And a ban is laid on every town.

Ibn Abbas said, "it is enforced'',

 i.e., it has been decreed that the people of each township that has been destroyed will never return to this world before the Day of Resurrection, as is reported clearly (through other narrations) from Ibn Abbas, Abu Ja`far Al-Baqir, Qatadah and others.

Ya'juj and Ma'juj

Then Allah tells: 

حَتَّى إِذَا فُتِحَتْ يَأْجُوجُ وَمَأْجُوجُ ...

Until, when Ya`juj and Ma`juj are let loose,

We have already mentioned that they are from the progeny of Adam, upon him be peace;

they are also descents of Nuh through his son Yafith (Japheth), who was the father of the Turks, Turk referring to the group of them who were left behind the barrier which was built by Dhul-Qarnayn.

Allah says:

هَـذَا رَحْمَةٌ مِّن رَّبِّى فَإِذَا جَآءَ وَعْدُ رَبِّى جَعَلَهُ دَكَّآءَ وَكَانَ وَعْدُ رَبِّى حَقّاً  - وَتَرَكْنَا بَعْضَهُمْ يَوْمَئِذٍ يَمُوجُ فِى بَعْضٍ

This is a mercy from my Lord, but when the promise of my Lord comes, He shall level it down to the ground. And the promise of my Lord is ever true. And on that Day, We shall leave them to surge like waves on one another...(18:98-99)

And in this Ayah, Allah says:

حَتَّى إِذَا فُتِحَتْ يَأْجُوجُ وَمَأْجُوجُ وَهُم مِّن كُلِّ حَدَبٍ يَنسِلُونَ ﴿٩٦﴾

Until, when Ya`juj and Ma`juj are let loose, and they swoop down from every Hadab.

meaning, they will come forth quickly to spread corruption.

A Hadab is a raised portion of land. This was the view of Ibn Abbas, Ikrimah, Abu Salih, Ath-Thawri and others.

This is how their emergence is described, as if the listener can see it.

وَلاَ يُنَبِّئُكَ مِثْلُ خَبِيرٍ

And none can inform you like Him Who is the All-Knower. (35:14)

This is information given by the One Who knows what has happened and what is yet to come, the One Who knows the unseen in the heavens and on earth. There is no god except Him.

Ibn Jarir narrated that Ubaydullah bin Abi Yazid said,

"Ibn Abbas saw some young boys playing and pouncing on one another, and said, this is how Ya'juj and Ma'juj will emerge.''

Their emergence has been described in numerous Hadiths of the Prophet. The First Hadith Imam Ahmad recorded that Abu Sa`id Al-Khudri said:

"I heard the Messenger of Allah say:

تُفْتَحُ يَأْجُوجُ وَمَأْجُوجُ، فَيَخْرُجُونَ عَلَى النَّاسِ، كَمَا قَالَ اللهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ:

وَهُم مِّن كُلِّ حَدَبٍ يَنسِلُونَ

فَيَغْشَوْنَ النَّاسَ وَيَنْحَازُ الْمُسْلِمُونَ عَنْهُمْ إِلَى مَدَائِنِهِمْ وَحُصُونِهِمْ، وَيَضُمُّونَ إِلَيْهِمْ مَوَاشِيَهُمْ، وَيَشْرَبُونَ مِيَاهَ الْأَرْضِ، حَتَّى إِنَّ بَعْضَهُمْ لَيَمُرُّ بِالنَّهَرِ فَيَشْرَبُونَ مَا فِيهِ حَتَّى يَتْرُكُوهُ يَابِسًا، حَتَّى إِنَّ مَنْ بَعْدَهُمْ لَيَمُرُّ بِذَلِكَ النَّهَرِ فَيَقُولُ: قَدْ كَانَ هَهُنَا مَاءٌ مَرَّةً، حَتَّى إِذَا لَمْ يَبْقَ مِنَ النَّاسِ أَحَدٌ إِلَّا أَحَدٌ فِي حِصْنٍ أَوْ مَدِينَةٍ، قَالَ قَائِلُهُمْ: هَؤُلَاءِ أَهْلُ الْأَرْضِ قَدْ فَرَغْنَا مِنْهُمْ بَقِيَ أَهْلُ السَّمَاءِ، قَالَ: ثُمَّ يَهُزُّ أَحَدُهُمْ حَرْبَتَهُ، ثُمَّ يَرْمِي بِهَا إِلَى السَّمَاءِ فَتَرْجِعُ إِلَيْهِ مُخضَّبَةً دَمًا لِلْبَلَاءِ وَالْفِتْنَةِ، فَبَيْنَمَا هُمْ عَلَى ذَلِكَ، بَعَثَ اللهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ دُودًا فِي أَعْنَاقِهِمْ كَنَغَفِ الْجَرَادِ الَّذِي يَخْرُجُ فِي أَعْنَاقِهِ، فَيُصْبِحُونَ مَوْتَى لَا يُسْمَعُ لَهُمْ حِسٌّ، فَيَقُولُ الْمُسْلِمُونَ: أَلَا رَجُلٌ يَشْرِي لَنَا نَفْسَهُ فَيَنْظُرَ مَا فَعَلَ هَذَا الْعَدُوُّ؟ قَالَ: فَيَتَجَرَّدُ رَجُلٌ مِنْهُمْ مُحْتَسِبًا نَفْسَهُ، قَدْ أَوْطَنَهَا عَلَى أَنَّهُ مَقْتُولٌ، فَيَنْزِلُ فَيَجِدُهُمْ مَوْتَى، بَعْضُهُمْ عَلَى بَعْضٍ، فَيُنَادِي: يَا مَعْشَرَ الْمُسْلِمِينَ، أَلَا أَبْشِرُوا إِنَّ اللهَ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ قَدْ كَفَاكُمْ عَدُوَّكُمْ، فَيَخْرُجُونَ مِنْ مَدَائِنِهِمْ وَحُصُونِهِمْ، وَيُسَرِّحُونَ مَوَاشِيَهُمْ، فَمَا يَكُونُ لَهُمْ رَعْيٌ إِلَّا لُحُومُهُمْ، فَتَشْكَرُ عَنْهُمْ كَأَحْسَنِ مَا شَكِرَتْ عَنْ شَيْءٍ مِنَ النَّبَاتِ أَصَاَبَتْهُ قَط

Ya'juj and Ma'juj will be let loose and will emerge upon mankind, as Allah says: and they swoop down from every Hadab.

They will overwhelm the people, and the Muslims will retreat to their cities and strongholds, bringing their flocks with them. They (Ya'juj and Ma'juj) will drink all the water of the land until some of them will pass a river and drink it dry, then those who come after them will pass by that place and will say, "There used to be water here once.''

Then there will be no one left except those who are in their strongholds and cities. Then one of them will say, "We have defeated the people of the earth; now the people of heaven are left.''

One of them will shake his spear and hurl it into the sky, and it will come back stained with blood, as a test and a trial for them. While this is happening, Allah will send a worm in their necks, like the worm that is found in date-stones or in the nostrils of sheep, and they will die and their clamor will cease.

Then the Muslims will say, "Who will volunteer to find out what the enemy is doing!''

One of them will step forward and volunteer, knowing that he will likely be killed. He will go down and will find them dead, lying on top of one another. Then he will call out, "O Muslims! Rejoice that Allah has sufficed you against your enemy!''

Then they will come out of their cities and strongholds, and will let their flocks out to graze, but they will have nothing to graze upon except the flesh of these people (Ya'juj and Ma'juj), but it will fill them better than any vegetation they have ever eaten before.

It was also recorded by Ibn Majah.

The Second Hadith Imam Ahmad also recorded from An-Nawwas bin Sam`an Al-Kilabi:

the Messenger of Allah mentioned the Dajjal one morning.

"Sometimes he described him as insignificant and sometimes he described him as so significant that we felt as if he were in the cluster of palm trees. He said:

غَيْرُ الدَّجَّالِ أَخْوَفُنِي عَلَيْكُمْ. فَإِنْ يَخْرُجْ وَأَنَا فِيكُمْ، فَأَنَا حَجِيجُهُ دُونَكُمْ، وَإِنْ يَخْرُجْ وَلَسْتُ فِيكُمْ، فَكُلُّ امْرِىءٍ حَجيجُ نَفْسِهِ، وَاللهُ خَلِيفَتِي عَلَى كُلِّ مُسْلِمٍ، وَإِنَّهُ شَابٌّ جَعْدٌ قَطَطٌ، عَيْنُهُ طَافِيَةٌ، وَإِنَّهُ يَخْرُجُ خَلَّةً بَيْنَ الشَّامِ وَالْعِرَاقِ فَعَاثَ يَمِينًا وَشِمَالًا، يَا عِبَادَ اللهِ اثْبُتُوا

There are other things that I fear for you more than the Dajjal. If he emerges while I am among you, I will deal with him for you. If he emerges when I am not among you, then each man will have to deal with him for himself, and Allah will take care of each Muslim on my behalf. He (the Dajjal) will be a young man with short, curly hair and a floating eye. He will emerge in a place between Syria and Iraq and will spread mischief right and left. O servants of Allah, be steadfast!

We said, `O Messenger of Allah, how long will he remain on earth?'

He said,

أَرْبَعُونَ يَوْمًا، يَوْمٌ كَسَنَةٍ، وَيَوْمٌ كَشَهْرٍ، يَوْمٌ كَجُمُعَةٍ، وَسَائِرُ أَيَّامِهِ كَأَيَّامِكُم

Forty days: one day like a year, one day like a month, one day like a week, and the rest of the days like your days.

We said, `O Messenger of Allah, on that day which will be like a year, will the prayers of one day and one night be sufficient.'

He said,

لَا، اقْدُرُوا لَهُ قَدْرَه

No, but you will have to compute it according to its due proportion (and pray accordingly).

We said, `O Messenger of Allah, how fast will he move across the land?'

He said,

كَالْغَيْثِ اسْتَدْبَرَتْهُ الرِّيح

Like a cloud driven by the wind.

He said,

فَيَمُرُّ بِالْحَيِّ فَيَدْعُوهُمْ فَيَسْتَجِيبُونَ لَهُ، فَيَأْمُرُ السَّمَاءَ فَتُمْطِرُ، وَالْأَرْضَ فَتُنْبِتُ، وَتَرُوحُ عَلَيْهِمْ سَارِحَتُهُمْ، وَهِيَ أَطْوَلُ مَا كَانَتْ ذُرًى، وَأَمَدَّهُ خَوَاصِرَ، وَأَسْبَغَهُ ضُرُوعًا، وَيَمُرُّ بِالْحَيِّ فَيَدْعُوهُمْ فَيَرُدُّونَ عَلَيْهِ قَوْلَهُ، فَتَتْبَعُهُ أَمْوَالُهُمْ فَيُصْبِحُونَ مُمْحِلِينَ، لَيْسَ لَهُمْ مِنْ أَمْوَالِهِمْ شَيْءٌ، وَيَمُرُّ بِالْخَرِبَةِ فَيَقُولُ لَهَا: أَخْرِجِي كُنُوزَكِ، فَتَتْبَعُهُ كُنُوزُهَا كَيَعَاسِيبِ النَّحْلِ قَالَ: وَيَأْمُرُ بِرَجُلٍ فَيُقْتَلُ، فَيَضْرِبُهُ بِالسَّيْفِ فَيَقْطَعُهُ جَزْلَتَيْنِ رَمْيَةَ الْغَرَضِ، ثُمَّ يَدْعُوهُ فَيُقْبِلُ إِلَيْهِ، يَتَهَلَّلُ وَجْهُهُ، فَبَيْنَمَا هُمْ عَلَى ذَلِكَ، إِذْ بَعَثَ اللهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ الْمَسِيحَ عِيسَى ابْنَ مَرْيَمَ، فَيَنْزِلُ عِنْدَ الْمَنَارَةِ الْبَيْضَاءِ شَرْقِيَّ دِمَشْقَ بَيْنَ مَهْرُودَتَيْنِ، وَاضِعًا يَدَيْهِ عَلَى أَجْنِحَةِ مَلَكَيْنِ، فَيَتْبَعُهُ فَيُدْرِكُهُ فَيَقْتُلُهُ عِنْدَ بَابِ لُدَ الشَّرْقِيِّ قَالَ: فَبَيْنَمَا هُمْ كَذَلِكَ، إِذْ أَوْحَى اللهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ إِلَى عِيسَى ابْنِ مَرْيَمَ عَلَيْهِ السَّلَامُ أَنِّي قَدْ أَخْرَجْتُ عِبَادًا مِنْ عِبَادِي، لَا يَدَانِ لَكَ بِقِتَالِهِمْ، فَحَرِّزْ عِبَادِي إِلَى الطُّورِ، فَيَبْعَثُ اللهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ يَأْجُوجَ وَمَأْجُوجَ، كَمَا قَالَ تَعَالَى:

وَهُم مِّن كُلِّ حَدَبٍ يَنسِلُونَ

He will come to a people and call them (to his way) and they will respond to him. He will issue a command to the sky and it will rain, and to the earth and it will bring forth vegetation, then their livestock will come to them in the evening with their humps very high and their udders full of milk and their flanks wide and fat.

Then he will come to another people and call them (to his way) and they will refuse, and their wealth will leave with him, and they will be faced with drought, with none of their wealth left. Then he will walk through the wasteland and will say to it, "Bring forth your treasure,'' and its treasure will come forth like a swarm of bees.

Then he will issue commands that a man be killed, and he will strike him with a sword and cut him into two pieces, and (put these pieces as far apart) as the distance between an archer and his target. Then he will call him, and the man will come to him with his face shining.

At that point Allah will send the Messiah `Isa bin Maryam, who will come down to the white minaret in the eastern side of Damascus, wearing two garments lightly dyed with saffron and with his hands resting on the wings of two angels.

He will search for him (the Dajjal) until he catches up with him at the eastern gate of Ludd, where he will kill him.

Then Allah will reveal to `Isa ibn Maryam the words:

"I have brought forth from amongst My creatures people against whom none will be able to fight. Take My servants safely to the Mount (Tur).''

Then Allah will send Ya'juj and Ma'juj, as Allah says: وَهُم مِّن كُلِّ حَدَبٍ يَنسِلُونَ   (and they swoop down from every Hadab).

فَيَرْغَبُ عِيسَى وَأَصْحَابُهُ إِلَى اللهِ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ، فَيُرْسِلُ اللهُ عَلَيْهِمْ نَغَفًا فِي رِقَابِهِمْ فَيُصْبِحُونَ فَرْسَى كَمَوْتِ نَفْسٍ وَاحِدَةٍ، فَيَهْبِطُ عِيسَى وَأَصْحَابُهُ فَلَا يَجِدُونَ فِي الْأَرْضِ بَيْتًا إِلَّا قَدْ مَلَأَهُ زَهَمُهُمْ وَنَتَنُهُمْ، فَيَرْغَبُ عِيسَى وَأَصْحَابُهُ إِلَى اللهِ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ،فَيُرْسِلُ اللهُ عَلَيْهِمْ طَيْرًا كَأَعْنَاقِ الْبُخْتِ، فَتَحْمِلُهُمْ فَتَطْرَحُهُمْ حَيْثُ شَاءَ الله

`Isa and his companions will beseech Allah, and Allah will send against them insects which will attack their necks, and in the morning they will all perish as one.

Then `Isa and his companions will come down and they will not find a single spot on earth that is free from their putrefaction and stench. Then `Isa and his companions will again beseech Allah, and He will send birds with necks like those of Bactrian camels, and they will carry them and throw them wherever Allah wills.

Ibn Jabir said:

"`Ata' bin Yazid As-Saksaki told me, from Ka`b or someone else: `They will throw them into Al-Mahbal.'

Ibn Jabir said:

"I said, `O Abu Yazid, and where is Al-Mahbal''

He said, "In the east (where the sun rises).''

He said:

وَيُرْسِلُ اللهُ مَطَرًا لَا يَكُنُّ مِنْهُ بَيْتُ مَدَرٍ وَلَا وَبَرٍ أَرْبَعِينَ يَوْمًا، فَيَغْسِلُ الْأَرْضَ حَتَّى يَتْرُكَهَا كَالزَّلَفَةِ، وَيُقَالُ لِلْأَرْضِ: أَنْبِتِي ثَمَرَكِ وَرُدِّي بَرَكَتَكِ، قَالَ: فَيَوْمَئِذٍ يَأْكُلُ النَّفَرُ مِنَ الرُّمَّانَةِ فَيَسْتَظِلُّونَ بِقِحْفِهَا، وَيُبَارَكُ فِي الرِّسْلِ حَتَّى إِنَّ اللِّقْحَةَ مِنَ الْإِبِلِ لَتَكْفِي الْفِئَامَ مِنَ النَّاسِ، وَاللِّقْحَةَ مِنَ الْبَقَرِ تَكْفِي الْفَخِذَ، وَالشَّاةَ مِنَ الْغَنَمِ تَكْفِي أَهْلَ الْبَيْتِ، قَالَ: فَبَيْنَمَا هُمْ عَلَى ذَلِكَ، إِذْ بَعَثَ اللهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ رِيحًا طَيِّبَةً، فَتَأْخُذُهُمْ تَحْتَ آبَاطِهِمْ فَتَقْبِضُ رُوحَ كُلِّ مُسْلِمٍ أَوْ قَالَ: كُلِّ مُؤْمِنٍ وَيَبْقَى شِرَارُ النَّاسِ، يَتَهَارَجُونَ تَهَارُجَ الْحُمُرِ، وَعَلَيْهِمْ تَقُومُ السَّاعَة

Then Allah will send rain which no house of clay or (tent of) camel's hair will be able to keep out, for forty days, and the earth will be washed until it looks like a mirror.

Then it will be said to the earth: bring forth your fruit and restore your blessing. On that day a group of people will be able to eat from one pomegranate and seek shade under its skin, and everything will be blessed.

A milch-camel will give so much milk that it will be sufficient for a whole group of people, and a milch-cow will give so much milk that it will be sufficient for a whole clan, and a sheep will be sufficient for an entire household.

At that time Allah will send a pleasant wind which will reach beneath their armpits and will take the soul of every Muslim -- or every believer -- and there will be left only the most evil of people who will commit fornication like mules, and then the Hour will come upon them.''

This was also recorded by Muslim but not by Al-Bukhari.

It was also recorded by the Sunan compilers, with different chains of narrators. At-Tirmidhi said, "It is Hasan Sahih.''

The Third Hadith Imam Ahmad recorded from Ibn Harmalah, from his maternal aunt who said:

"The Messenger of Allah gave a Khutbah, and he had a bandage on his finger where he had been stung by a scorpion. He said:

إِنَّكُمْ تَقُولُونَ: لَا عَدُوَّ لَكُمْ، وَإِنَّكُمْ لَا تَزَالُونَ تُقَاتِلُونَ عَدُوًّا، حَتَّى يَأْتِيَ يَأْجُوجُ وَمَأْجُوجُ: عِرَاضَ الْوُجُوهِ، صِغَارَ الْعُيُونِ، صُهْبَ الشِّعَافِ، مِنْ كُلِّ حَدَبٍ يَنْسِلُونَ كَأَنَّ وُجُوهَهُمُ الْمَجَانُّ الْمُطْرَقَة

You say that you have no enemy, but you will keep fighting your enemies until Ya'juj and Ma'juj come, with their wide faces, small eyes and reddish hair, pouring down from every mound with their faces looking like burnished shields.''

Ibn Abi Hatim recorded a Hadith of Muhammad bin `Amr from Khalid bin Abdullah bin Harmalah Al-Mudlaji, from his paternal aunt, from the Prophet, and he mentioned something similar.

It was confirmed by Hadiths that `Isa bin Maryam will perform Hajj to the Al-Bayt Al-`Atiq (i.e., the Ka`bah).

Imam Ahmad recorded that Abu Sa`id said: The Messenger of Allah said:

لَيُحَجَّنَّ هَذَا الْبَيْتُ وَلَيُعْتَمَرَنَّ بَعْدَ خُرُوجِ يَأْجُوجَ وَمَأْجُوج

He will certainly come to this House and perform Hajj and `Umrah, after the emergence of Ya'juj and Ma'juj.

This was recorded by Al-Bukhari.

وَاقْتَرَبَ الْوَعْدُ الْحَقُّ ...

And the true promise (Day of Resurrection) shall draw near.

the Day of Resurrection, when these terrors and earthquakes and this chaos will come to pass. The Hour has drawn nigh and when it comes to pass, the disbelievers will say: "This is a difficult Day.''

Allah says:

... فَإِذَا هِيَ شَاخِصَةٌ أَبْصَارُ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا ...

Then, you shall see the eyes of the disbelievers fixedly staring in horror.

because of the horror of the tremendous events that they are witnessing.

... يَا وَيْلَنَا ...

Woe to us!

means, they will say, `Woe to us!'

... قَدْ كُنَّا فِي غَفْلَةٍ مِّنْ هَذَا ...

We were indeed heedless of this,

means, in the world.

... بَلْ كُنَّا ظَالِمِينَ ﴿٩٧﴾

nay, but we were wrongdoers.

they will admit their wrong- doing at the time when that will not help them at all.  

98.

Previous 95-97

إِنَّكُمْ وَمَا تَعْبُدُونَ مِن دُونِ اللَّهِ حَصَبُ جَهَنَّمَ أَنتُمْ لَهَا وَارِدُونَ

Certainly you and that which you are worshipping now besides Allah, are (but) fuel (Hasab) for Hell! (Surely) you will enter it.

99.

 لَوْ كَانَ هَـؤُلاءِ ءَالِهَةً مَّا وَرَدُوهَا وَكُلٌّ فِيهَا خَـلِدُونَ

Had these been gods, they would not have entered there (Hell), and all of them will abide therein forever.

100.

 لَهُمْ فِيهَا زَفِيرٌ وَهُمْ فِيهَا لاَ يَسْمَعُونَ

Therein they will be breathing out with deep sighs and roaring and therein they will hear not.

101.

إِنَّ الَّذِينَ سَبَقَتْ لَهُمْ مِّنَّا الْحُسْنَى أُوْلَـئِكَ عَنْهَا مُبْعَدُونَ

Verily, those for whom the good has preceded from Us, they will be removed far therefrom (Hell).

102.

لاَ يَسْمَعُونَ حَسِيَسَهَا وَهُمْ فِى مَا اشْتَهَتْ أَنفُسُهُمْ خَـلِدُونَ

They shall not hear the slightest sound of it (Hell), while they abide in that which their own selves desire.

103.

لاَ يَحْزُنُهُمُ الْفَزَعُ الاٌّكْبَرُ وَتَتَلَقَّـهُمُ الْمَلَـئِكَةُ هَـذَا يَوْمُكُمُ الَّذِى كُنتُمْ تُوعَدُونَ

The greatest terror will not grieve them, and the angels will meet them, (with the greeting:) "This is your Day which you were promised.''  

Next 104   

The Idolators and their gods are Fuel for Hell

Allah says to the people of Makkah, the idolators of the Quraysh and those who followed their religion of idol worship:

إِنَّكُمْ وَمَا تَعْبُدُونَ مِن دُونِ اللَّهِ حَصَبُ جَهَنَّمَ ...

Certainly you and that which you are worshipping now besides Allah, are (but) Hasab for Hell!

Ibn Abbas said: "Kindling.''

This is like the Ayah:

وَقُودُهَا النَّاسُ وَالْحِجَارَةُ

whose fuel is men and stones. (66:6)

According to another report, Ibn Abbas said: حَصَبُ جَهَنَّمَ  (Hasab for Hell), means firewood in (the dialect of the people of) Zanjiyyah.

Mujahid, Ikrimah and Qatadah said: "Its fuel.''

Ad-Dahhak said: "The fuel of Hell means that which is thrown into it.''

This was also the view of others.

... أَنتُمْ لَهَا وَارِدُونَ ﴿٩٨﴾

(Surely) you will enter it.

means, you will go into it.

لَوْ كَانَ هَؤُلَاء آلِهَةً مَّا وَرَدُوهَا ...

Had these been gods, they would not have entered there,

means, if these idols and false gods which you worshipped instead of Allah, had really been gods, they would not have entered the Hellfire.

... وَكُلٌّ فِيهَا خَالِدُونَ ﴿٩٩﴾

and all of them will abide therein forever.

means, the worshippers and the objects of their worship will all abide therein forever.

لَهُمْ فِيهَا زَفِيرٌ ...

Therein they will be breathing out with deep sighs and roaring,

This is like the Ayah:

لَهُمْ فِيهَا زَفِيرٌ وَشَهِيقٌ

they will have (in the Fire), Zafir and Shahiq. (11:106)

Zafir refers to their exhalation, and Shahiq refers to their inhalation.

... وَهُمْ فِيهَا لَا يَسْمَعُونَ ﴿١٠٠﴾

and therein they will hear not.

The State of the Blessed

Here Allah tells: 

إِنَّ الَّذِينَ سَبَقَتْ لَهُم مِّنَّا الْحُسْنَى ...

Verily, those for whom the good has preceded from Us,

Ikrimah said, "Mercy.''

Others said it means being blessed.

... أُوْلَئِكَ عَنْهَا مُبْعَدُونَ ﴿١٠١﴾

they will be removed far therefrom.

When Allah mentions the people of Hell and their punishment for their associating others in worship with Allah, He follows that with a description of the blessed who believed in Allah and His Messengers. These are the ones for whom the blessing has preceded from Allah, and they did righteous deeds in the world, as Allah says:

لِّلَّذِينَ أَحْسَنُواْ الْحُسْنَى وَزِيَادَةٌ

For those who have done good is the best reward and even more. (10:26)

هَلْ جَزَآءُ الإِحْسَـنِ إِلاَّ الإِحْسَـنُ

Is there any reward for good other than good. (55:60)

Just as they did good in this world, Allah will make their final destiny and their reward good; He will save them from punishment and give them a great reward.

... أُوْلَئِكَ عَنْهَا مُبْعَدُونَ

they will be removed far therefrom.

لَا يَسْمَعُونَ حَسِيسَهَا ...

They shall not hear the slightest sound of it,

means, they will not feel its heat in their bodies.

... وَهُمْ فِي مَا اشْتَهَتْ أَنفُسُهُمْ خَالِدُونَ ﴿١٠٢﴾

while they abide in that which their own selves desire.

means, they will be safe from that which they fear, and they will have all that they love and desire.

It was said that this was revealed to point out an exception in the case of those who are worshipped instead of Allah, and to exclude `Uzayr and the Messiah from their number.

Hajjaj bin Muhammad Al-A`war reported from Ibn Jurayj, and Uthman bin Ata' reported from Ibn Abbas:

إِنَّكُمْ وَمَا تَعْبُدُونَ مِن دُونِ اللَّهِ حَصَبُ جَهَنَّمَ أَنتُمْ لَهَا وَارِدُونَ Certainly you (disbelievers) and that which you are worshipping now besides Allah, are (but) Hasab for Hell! (Surely) you will enter it). (98)

Then He made an exception and said: إِنَّ الَّذِينَ سَبَقَتْ لَهُم مِّنَّا الْحُسْنَى Verily, those for whom the good has preceded from Us. (101)

It was said that this referred to the angels and `Isa, and others who are worshipped instead of Allah. This was the view of Ikrimah, Al-Hasan and Ibn Jurayj.

Muhammad bin Ishaq bin Yasar said in his book of Sirah:

"According to what I have heard, the Messenger of Allah sat down one day with Al-Walid bin Al-Mughirah in the Masjid, and An-Nadr bin Al-Harith came and sat down with them. There were also other men of Quraysh in the Masjid.

The Messenger of Allah spoke, then An-Nadr bin Al-Harith came up to him and the Messenger of Allah spoke to him until he defeated him in argument.

Then he recited to him and to them, إِنَّكُمْ وَمَا تَعْبُدُونَ مِن دُونِ اللَّهِ حَصَبُ جَهَنَّمَ أَنتُمْ لَهَا وَارِدُونَ Certainly you (disbelievers) and that which you are worshipping now besides Allah, are (but) Hasab for Hell! (Surely) you will enter it). (98) Until His Statement, وَهُمْ فِيهَا لَا يَسْمَعُونَ   (and therein they will hear not).

Then the Messenger of Allah got up and went to sit with Abdullah bin Al-Zab`ari As-Sahmi.

Al-Walid bin Al-Mughirah said to Abdullah bin Al-Zab`ari, "By Allah, An-Nadr bin Al-Harith could not match the son of Abd Al-Muttalib in argument.

Muhammad claims that we and these gods that we worship are fuel for Hell.''

Abdullah bin Az-Zab`ari said: "By Allah, if I meet with him I will defeat him in argument. Ask Muhammad whether everyone that is worshipped instead of Allah will be in Hell with those who worshipped him, for we worship the angels, and the Jews worship `Uzayr, and the Christians worship Al-Masih, `Isa bin Maryam.''

Al-Walid and those who were sitting with him were amazed at what Abdullah bin Az-Zab`ari said, and they thought that he had come up with a good point.

He said this to the Messenger of Allah, who said:

كُلُّ مَنْ أَحَبَّ أَنْ يُعْبَدَ مِنْ دُونِ اللهِ، فَهُوَ مَعَ مَنْ عَبَدَهُ، إِنَّهُمْ إِنَّمَا يَعْبُدُونَ الشَّيْطَانَ وَمَنْ أَمَرَهُمْ بِعِبَادَتِه

Everyone who likes to be worshipped instead of Allah will be with the ones who worshipped him, for indeed they are worshipping the Shaytan and whoever told them to worship him.

Then Allah revealed the words:

إِنَّ الَّذِينَ سَبَقَتْ لَهُم مِّنَّا الْحُسْنَى أُوْلَئِكَ عَنْهَا مُبْعَدُونَ

Verily, those for whom the good has preceded from Us, they will be removed far therefrom (Hell).

لَا يَسْمَعُونَ حَسِيسَهَا وَهُمْ فِي مَا اشْتَهَتْ أَنفُسُهُمْ خَالِدُونَ

They shall not hear the slightest sound of it (Hell), while they abide in that which their own selves desire.

It was revealed about the mention of `Isa, `Uzayr and rabbis and monks who were also worshipped, who had spent their lives in devotion towards Allah, but the misguided people who came after them took them as lords instead of Allah.

Concerning the notion of worshipping the angels as daughters of Allah, the following words were revealed:

وَقَالُواْ اتَّخَذَ الرَّحْمَـنُ وَلَداً سُبْحَانَهُ بَلْ عِبَادٌ مُّكْرَمُونَ

And they say: "The Most Gracious has begotten children.'' Glory to Him! They are but honored slaves.

Until His saying,

وَمَن يَقُلْ مِنْهُمْ إِنِّى إِلَـهٌ مِّن دُونِهِ فَذلِكَ نَجْزِيهِ جَهَنَّمَ كَذَلِكَ نَجْزِى الظَّـلِمِينَ

And if any of them should say: "Verily, I am a god besides Him,'' such a one We should recompense with Hell. Thus We recompense the wrongdoers. (21:26-29)

Concerning `Isa bin Maryam, the fact that he is worshipped alongside Allah, and the amazement of Al-Walid and the others who were present at the argument (of Abdullah bin Az-Zab'ari), the following words were revealed:

وَلَمَّا ضُرِبَ ابْنُ مَرْيَمَ مَثَلاً إِذَا قَوْمُكَ مِنْهُ يَصِدُّونَ  - وَقَالُواْ ءَأَالِهَتُنَا خَيْرٌ أَمْ هُوَ مَا ضَرَبُوهُ لَكَ إِلاَّ جَدَلاَ بَلْ هُمْ قَوْمٌ خَصِمُونَ

إِنْ هُوَ إِلاَّ عَبْدٌ أَنْعَمْنَا عَلَيْهِ وَجَعَلْنَـهُ مَثَلاً لِّبَنِى إِسْرَءِيلَ  - وَلَوْ نَشَآءُ لَجَعَلْنَا مِنكُمْ مَّلَـئِكَةً فِى الاٌّرْضِ يَخْلُفُونَ  - وَإِنَّهُ لَعِلْمٌ لِّلسَّاعَةِ فَلاَ تَمْتَرُنَّ بِهَا

And when the son of Maryam is quoted as an example, behold, your people cry aloud (laugh out at the example). And say: "Are our gods better or is he!'' They quoted not the above example except for argument. Nay! But they are a quarrelsome people. He was not more than a slave. We granted Our favor to him, and We made him an example for the Children of Israel. And if it were Our will, We would have made angels to replace you on the earth. And he shall be a known sign for the Hour. Therefore have no doubt concerning it. (43:57-61)

meaning, the miracles and signs that happened at his hands, such as raising the dead and healing the sick, are sufficient as signs of the approach of the Hour,

فَلاَ تَمْتَرُنَّ بِهَا وَاتَّبِعُونِ هَـذَا صِرَطٌ مُّسْتَقِيمٌ

Therefore have no doubt concerning it. And follow Me (Allah)! This is the straight path. (43:63)''

What Ibn Az-Zab`ari said was a serious mistake, because the Ayah was addressed to the people of Makkah concerning their worship of idols which were inanimate and could not think. It was a rebuke for their worship of them, so Allah said: إِنَّكُمْ وَمَا تَعْبُدُونَ مِن دُونِ اللَّهِ حَصَبُ جَهَنَّمَ Certainly you (disbelievers) and that which you are worshipping now besides Allah, are (but) Hasab for Hell!

How could this be applied to Al-Masih, `Uzayr and others who did righteous deeds and did not accept the worship of those who worshipped them.

لَا يَحْزُنُهُمُ الْفَزَعُ الْأَكْبَرُ ...

The greatest terror will not grieve them,

It was said that; this means death, as was narrated by Abdur-Razzaq from Yahya bin Rabi`ah from Ata.'

Or it was said that; the greatest terror refers to the blast of the Trumpet, as Al-`Awfi said narrating from Ibn Abbas and Abu Sinan, Sa`id bin Sinan Ash-Shaybani.

This was the view favored by Ibn Jarir in his Tafsir.

... وَتَتَلَقَّاهُمُ الْمَلَائِكَةُ هَذَا يَوْمُكُمُ الَّذِي كُنتُمْ تُوعَدُونَ ﴿١٠٣﴾

and the angels will meet them, (with the greeting:) "This is your Day which you were promised''.

meaning, the angels will greet them on the Day of Resurrection when they emerge from their graves with the words:

هَذَا يَوْمُكُمُ الَّذِي كُنتُمْ تُوعَدُونَ  ("This is your Day which you were promised''),

meaning, hope for the best.

104.

Previous 98-103

 يَوْمَ نَطْوِى السَّمَآءَ كَطَىِّ السِّجِلِّ لِلْكُتُبِ كَمَا بَدَأْنَآ أَوَّلَ خَلْقٍ نُّعِيدُهُ وَعْداً عَلَيْنَآ إِنَّا كُنَّا فَـعِلِينَ

And (remember) the Day when We shall roll up the heaven like a Sijill for books. As We began the first creation, We shall repeat it. (It is) a promise binding upon Us. Truly, We shall do it.  

Next 105-107   

The Heavens will be rolled up on the Day of Resurrection

Allah says: this will happen on the Day of Resurrection:

يَوْمَ نَطْوِي السَّمَاء كَطَيِّ السِّجِلِّ لِلْكُتُبِ ...

And (remember) the Day when We shall roll up the heaven like a Sijill for books.

This is like the Ayah:

وَمَا قَدَرُواْ اللَّهَ حَقَّ قَدْرِهِ وَالاٌّرْضُ جَمِيعـاً قَبْضَـتُهُ يَوْمَ الْقِيَـمَةِ وَالسَّمَـوَتُ مَطْوِيَّـتٌ بِيَمِينِهِ سُبْحَـنَهُ وَتَعَالَى عَمَّا يُشْرِكُونَ

They made not a just estimate of Allah such as is due to Him. And on the Day of Resurrection the whole of the earth will be grasped by His Hand and the heavens will be rolled up in His Right Hand. Glorified be He, and High be He above all that they associate as partners with Him! (39:67)

Al-Bukhari recorded that Nafi` reported from Ibn Umar that the Messenger of Allah said:

إِنَّ اللهَ يَقْبِضُ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ الْأَرَضِينَ وَتَكُونُ السَّمَوَاتُ بِيَمِينِه

On the Day of Resurrection, Allah will seize the earth and the heavens will be in His Right Hand.

This was recorded by Al-Bukhari, may Allah have mercy on him.

... كَطَيِّ السِّجِلِّ لِلْكُتُبِ ...

like a Sijill rolled up for books.

What is meant by Sijill is book. As-Suddi said concerning this Ayah:

"As-Sijill is an angel who is entrusted with the records; when a person dies, his Book (of deeds) is taken up to As-Sijill, and he rolls it up and puts it away until the Day of Resurrection.''

But the correct view as narrated from Ibn Abbas is that; As-Sijill refers to the record (of deeds).

This was also reported from him by Ali bin Abi Talhah and Al-`Awfi. This was also stated by Mujahid, Qatadah and others. This was the view favored by Ibn Jarir, because this usage is well-known in the (Arabic) language.

Based on the above, the meaning is: the Day when the heaven will be rolled up like a scroll. This is like the Ayah:

فَلَمَّا أَسْلَمَا وَتَلَّهُ لِلْجَبِينِ

Then, when they had both submitted themselves (to the will of Allah), and he had laid him prostrate on his forehead. (37:103)

There are many more linguistic examples in this respect. Allah knows best.

... كَمَا بَدَأْنَا أَوَّلَ خَلْقٍ نُّعِيدُهُ وَعْدًا عَلَيْنَا إِنَّا كُنَّا فَاعِلِينَ ﴿١٠٤﴾

As We began the first creation, We shall repeat it. (It is) a promise binding upon Us. Truly, We shall do it.

means, this will inevitably come to pass on the Day when Allah creates His creation anew. As He created them in the first place, He is surely able to re-create them. This must inevitably come to pass because it is one of the things that Allah has promised, and He does not break His promise. He is able to do that. Because He says: إِنَّا كُنَّا فَاعِلِينَ (Truly, We shall do it).

Imam Ahmad recorded that Ibn Abbas said: The Messenger of Allah stood among us exhorting us, and said:

إِنَّكُمْ مَحْشُورُونَ إِلَى اللهِ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ حُفَاةً عُرَاةً غُرْلًا،

 كَمَا بَدَأْنَا أَوَّلَ خَلْقٍ نُّعِيدُهُ وَعْدًا عَلَيْنَا إِنَّا كُنَّا فَاعِلِينَ

You will be gathered before Allah barefoot, naked and uncircumcised.

As We began the first creation, We shall repeat it. (It is) a promise binding upon Us. Truly, We shall do it.

And he mentioned the entire Hadith.

It was also recorded in the Two Sahihs, and Al-Bukhari mentioned it in his Tafsir of this Ayah.

105.

Previous 104

وَلَقَدْ كَتَبْنَا فِى الزَّبُورِ مِن بَعْدِ الذِّكْرِ أَنَّ الاٌّرْضَ يَرِثُهَا عِبَادِىَ الصَّـلِحُونَ

And indeed We have written in Az-Zabur after Adh-Dhikr that My righteous servants shall inherit the land.

106.

 إِنَّ فِى هَـذَا لَبَلَـغاً لِّقَوْمٍ عَـبِدِينَ

Verily, in this there is a plain Message for people who worship Allah

107.

 وَمَآ أَرْسَلْنَـكَ إِلاَّ رَحْمَةً لِّلْعَـلَمِينَ 

And We have sent you (O Muhammad) not but as a mercy for the `Alamin.  

Next 108-112   

The Earth will be inherited by the Righteous

Allah tells us of His decree for His righteous servants who are the blessed in this world and in the Hereafter, those who will inherit the earth in this world and in the Hereafter.

As Allah says:

إِنَّ الأَرْضَ للَّهِ يُورِثُهَا مَن يَشَآءُ مِنْ عِبَادِهِ وَالْعَـقِبَةُ لِلْمُتَّقِينَ

Verily, the earth is Allah's. He gives it as a heritage to whom He wills of His servants; and the (blessed) end is for those who have Taqwa. (7:128)

إِنَّا لَنَنصُرُ رُسُلَنَا وَالَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ فِى الْحَيَوةِ الدُّنْيَا وَيَوْمَ يَقُومُ الاٌّشْهَـدُ

Verily, We will indeed make victorious Our Messengers and those who believe in this world's life and on the Day when the witnesses will stand forth. (40:51)

وَعَدَ اللَّهُ الَّذِينَ ءامَنُواْ مِنْكُمْ وَعَمِلُواْ الصَّـلِحَاتِ لَيَسْتَخْلِفَنَّهُمْ فِى الاْرْضِ كَمَا اسْتَخْلَفَ الَّذِينَ مِن قَبْلِهِمْ وَلَيُمَكّنَنَّ لَهُمْ دِينَهُمُ الَّذِى ارْتَضَى لَهُمْ

Allah has promised those among you who believe and do righteous good deeds, that He will certainly grant them succession in the land, as He granted it to those before them, and that He will grant them the authority to practice their religion which He has chosen for them. (24:55)

Allah tells us that this is recorded in the Books of Divine Laws and Decrees, and that it will inevitably come to pass.

Allah says:

وَلَقَدْ كَتَبْنَا فِي الزَّبُورِ مِن بَعْدِ الذِّكْرِ ...

And indeed We have written in Az-Zabur after Adh-Dhikr,

Al-A`mash said: "I asked Sa`id bin Jubayr about the Ayah:  وَلَقَدْ كَتَبْنَا فِي الزَّبُورِ مِن بَعْدِ الذِّكْرِ   (And indeed We have written in Az-Zabur after Adh-Dhikr, He said:

`Az-Zabur means the Tawrah, the Injil and the Qur'an.'''

Mujahid said, "Az-Zabur means the Book.''

Ibn Abbas, Ash-Sha`bi, Al-Hasan, Qatadah and others said,

"Az-Zabur is that which was revealed to Dawud, and Adh-Dhikr is the Tawrah.''

Mujahid said:

"Az-Zabur means the Books which came after Adh-Dhikr, and Adh-Dhikr is the Mother of the Book (Umm Al-Kitab) which is with Allah.''

This was also the view of Zayd bin Aslam:

"It is the First Book.''

Ath-Thawri said: "It is Al-Lawh Al-Mahfuz.''

... أَنَّ الْأَرْضَ يَرِثُهَا عِبَادِيَ الصَّالِحُونَ ﴿١٠٥﴾

that My righteous servants shall inherit the land.

Mujahid said, narrating from Ibn Abbas, "This means, the land of Paradise.''

This was also the view of Abu Aliyah, Mujahid, Sa`id bin Jubayr, Ash-Sha`bi, Qatadah, As-Suddi, Abu Salih, Ar-Rabi` bin Anas and Ath-Thawri (may Allah have mercy on them).

إِنَّ فِي هَذَا لَبَلَاغًا لِّقَوْمٍ عَابِدِينَ ﴿١٠٦

Verily, in this (the Qur'an) there is a plain Message for people who worship Allah.

means, `in this Qur'an which We have revealed to Our servant Muhammad, there is a plain Message which is beneficial and is sufficient for a people who worship Allah.'

This refers to those who worship Allah in the manner which He has prescribed and which He loves and is pleased with, and they would rather obey Allah than follow the Shaytan or their own desires.

Muhammad is a Mercy to the Worlds

Allah says: 

وَمَا أَرْسَلْنَاكَ إِلَّا رَحْمَةً لِّلْعَالَمِينَ ﴿١٠٧

And We have sent you not but as a mercy for the `Alamin.

Here Allah tells us that He has made Muhammad a mercy to the `Alamin, i.e., He sent him as a mercy for all of them (peoples), so whoever accepts this mercy and gives thanks for this blessing, will be happy in this world and in the Hereafter. But whoever rejects it and denies it, will lose out in this world and in the Hereafter, as Allah says:

أَلَمْ تَرَ إِلَى الَّذِينَ بَدَّلُواْ نِعْمَتَ اللَّهِ كُفْرًا وَأَحَلُّواْ قَوْمَهُمْ دَارَ الْبَوَارِ  - جَهَنَّمَ يَصْلَوْنَهَا وَبِئْسَ الْقَرَارُ

Have you not seen those who have changed the blessings of Allah into disbelief, and caused their people to dwell in the house of destruction Hell, in which they will burn, -- and what an evil place to settle in! (14:28-29)

And Allah says, describing the Qur'an:

قُلْ هُوَ لِلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ هُدًى وَشِفَآءٌ وَالَّذِينَ لاَ يُؤْمِنُونَ فِى ءَاذَانِهِمْ وَقْرٌ وَهُوَ عَلَيْهِمْ عَمًى أُوْلَـئِكَ يُنَادَوْنَ مِن مَّكَانٍ بَعِيدٍ

Say: "It is for those who believe, a guide and a healing. And as for those who disbelieve, there is heaviness in their ears, and it is blindness for them. They are those who are called from a place far away.'' (41:44)

Muslim reports in his Sahih: Ibn Abi `Umar told us, Marwan Al-Fazari told us, from Yazid bin Kisan, from Ibn Abi Hazim that Abu Hurayrah said that; it was said, "O Messenger of Allah, pray against the idolators.'' He said:

إِنِّي لَمْ أُبْعَثْ لَعَّانًا، وَإِنَّمَا بُعِثْتُ رَحْمَة

I was not sent as a curse, rather I was sent as a mercy.

This was recorded by Muslim.

Imam Ahmad recorded that `Amr bin Abi Qurrah Al-Kindi said:

"Hudhayfah was in Al-Mada'in and he was mentioning things that the Messenger of Allah had said. Hudhayfah came to Salman and Salman said: `O Hudhayfah, the Messenger of Allah (would sometimes be angry and would speak accordingly, and would sometimes be pleased and would speak accordingly. I know that the Messenger of Allah) addressed us and said:

أَيُّمَا رَجُلٍ مِنْ أُمَّتِي سَبَبْتُهُ (سَبَّةً) فِي غَضَبِي أَوْ لَعَنْتُهُ لَعْنَةً، فَإِنَّمَا أَنَا رَجُلٌ مِنْ وَلَدِ آدَمَ أَغْضَبُ كَمَا تَغْضَبُونَ، إِنَّمَا بَعَثَنِي اللهُ رَحْمَةً لِلْعَالَمِينَ فَاجْعَلْهَا صَلَاةً عَلَيْهِ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَة

Any man of my Ummah whom I have insulted or cursed when I was angry -- for I am a man from among the sons of Adam, and I get angry just as you do. But Allah has sent me as a Mercy to the Worlds, so I will make that (my anger) into blessings for him on the Day of Resurrection.''

This was also recorded by Abu Dawud from Ahmad bin Yunus from Za'idah.

It may be asked: what kind of mercy do those who disbelieve in him get?

The answer is what Abu Jafar bin Jarir recorded from Ibn Abbas concerning the Ayah: وَمَا أَرْسَلْنَاكَ إِلَّا رَحْمَةً لِّلْعَالَمِينَ   (And We have sent you not but as a mercy for the `Alamin),  He said,

-                      "Whoever believes in Allah and the Last Day, mercy will be decreed for him in this world and in the Hereafter;

-                      whoever does not believe in Allah and His Messenger, will be protected from that which happened to the nations of earthquakes and stoning.''  

108.

Previous 105-107

 قُلْ إِنَّمَآ يُوحَى إِلَىَّ أَنَّمَآ إِلَـهُكُمْ إِلَـهٌ وَحِدٌ فَهَلْ أَنتُمْ مُّسْلِمُونَ

Say: "It is revealed to me that your God is only one God. Will you then be Muslims!''

109.

 فَإِن تَوَلَّوْاْ فَقُلْ ءَاذَنتُكُمْ عَلَى سَوَآءٍ وَإِنْ أَدْرِى أَقَرِيبٌ أَم بَعِيدٌ مَّا تُوعَدُونَ

But if they turn away say: "I give you a notice to be known to us all alike. And I know not whether that which you are promised is near or far.''

110.

 إِنَّهُ يَعْلَمُ الْجَهْرَ مِنَ الْقَوْلِ وَيَعْلَمُ مَا تَكْتُمُونَ

"Verily, He knows that which is spoken aloud and He knows that which you conceal.''

111.

وَإِنْ أَدْرِى لَعَلَّهُ فِتْنَةٌ لَّكُمْ وَمَتَاعٌ إِلَى حِينٍ

"And I know not, perhaps it may be a trial for you, and an enjoyment for a while.''

112.

قَالَ رَبِّ احْكُم بِالْحَقِّ

He said: "My Lord! Judge You in truth!

وَرَبُّنَا الرَّحْمَـنُ الْمُسْتَعَانُ عَلَى مَا تَصِفُونَ

Our Lord is the Most Gracious, Whose help is to be sought against that which you attribute!''

The main Objective of Revelation is that Allah be worshipped

Allah commands His Messenger:

قُلْ ...

Say: i.e. say to the idolators:

... إِنَّمَا يُوحَى إِلَيَّ أَنَّمَا إِلَهُكُمْ إِلَهٌ وَاحِدٌ فَهَلْ أَنتُم مُّسْلِمُونَ ﴿١٠٨﴾

"It is revealed to me that your God is only one God. Will you then be Muslims!''

meaning, will you then follow that and submit to it!

فَإِن تَوَلَّوْا ...

But if they turn away,

means, if they ignore that to which you call them.

... فَقُلْ آذَنتُكُمْ عَلَى سَوَاء ...

say: "I give you a notice to be known to us all alike...''

meaning, `I declare that I am in a state of war with you as you are in a state of war with me. I have nothing to do with you just as you have nothing to do with me.' This is like the Ayah:

وَإِن كَذَّبُوكَ فَقُل لِّى عَمَلِى وَلَكُمْ عَمَلُكُمْ أَنتُمْ بَرِيئُونَ مِمَّآ أَعْمَلُ وَأَنَاْ بَرِىءٌ مِّمَّا تَعْمَلُونَ

And if they belie you, say: "For me are my deeds and for you are your deeds! You are innocent of what I do, and I am innocent of what you do!'' (10:41)

وَإِمَّا تَخَافَنَّ مِن قَوْمٍ خِيَانَةً فَانبِذْ إِلَيْهِمْ عَلَى سَوَآءٍ

If you fear treachery from any people, throw back (their covenant) to them (so as to be) on equal terms (that there will be no more covenant between you and them). (8:58)

which means: so that both you and they will know that the treaty is null and void.

Similarly, Allah says here: فَإِن تَوَلَّوْا فَقُلْ آذَنتُكُمْ عَلَى سَوَاء But if they turn away say: "I give you a notice to be known to us all alike...''

meaning, `I have already informed you that I have nothing to do with you and you have nothing to do with me.'

No one knows when the Hour will come

And He (Muhammad) says:

... وَإِنْ أَدْرِي أَقَرِيبٌ أَم بَعِيدٌ مَّا تُوعَدُونَ ﴿١٠٩﴾

And I know not whether that which you are promised (i.e., the Day of Resurrection) is near or far.

meaning: `it will inevitably come to pass, but I have no knowledge of whether it is near or far.'

إِنَّهُ يَعْلَمُ الْجَهْرَ مِنَ الْقَوْلِ وَيَعْلَمُ مَا تَكْتُمُونَ ﴿١١٠

Verily, He (Allah) knows that which is spoken aloud (openly) and He knows that which you conceal.

Allah knows the Unseen in its entirety; He knows what His creatures do openly and what they do secretly. He knows what is visible and what is concealed; He knows what is secret and hidden. He knows what His creatures do openly and in secret, and He will requite them for that, for both minor and major actions.

وَإِنْ أَدْرِي لَعَلَّهُ فِتْنَةٌ لَّكُمْ وَمَتَاعٌ إِلَى حِينٍ ﴿١١١

And I know not, perhaps it may be a trial for you, and an enjoyment for a while.

meaning, `I do not know, perhaps it is a trial for you, and an enjoyment for a while.'