Tafsir Ibn Kathir (English)

Alama Imad ud Din Ibn Kathir

Surah Al Baqarah Pt II

Ayah 186-286

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious,Most Merciful

186

وَإِذَا سَأَلَكَ عِبَادِي عَنِّي فَإِنِّي قَرِيبٌ

And when My servants ask you (O Muhammad concerning Me, then answer them), I am indeed near (to them by My knowledge).

أُجِيبُ دَعْوَةَ الدَّاعِ إِذَا دَعَانِ فَلْيَسْتَجِيبُواْ لِى وَلْيُؤْمِنُواْ بِى لَعَلَّهُمْ يَرْشُدُونَ

I respond to the invocations of the supplicant when he calls on Me (without any mediator or intercessor). So let them obey Me and believe in Me, so that they may be led aright.

Allah hears the Servant's Supplication

Allah says;

وَإِذَا سَأَلَكَ عِبَادِي عَنِّي فَإِنِّي قَرِيبٌ أُجِيبُ دَعْوَةَ الدَّاعِ إِذَا دَعَانِ فَلْيَسْتَجِيبُواْ لِي وَلْيُؤْمِنُواْ بِي لَعَلَّهُمْ يَرْشُدُونَ ﴿١٨٦﴾  

And when My servants ask you (O Muhammad concerning Me, then answer them), I am indeed near (to them by My knowledge). I respond to the invocations of the supplicant when he calls on Me (without any mediator or intercessor). So let them obey Me and believe in Me, so that they may be led aright.

Imam Ahmad reported that Abu Musa Al-Ashari said,

"We were in the company of Allah's Messenger during a battle. Whenever we climbed a high place, went up a hill or went down a valley, we used to say, `Allah is the Most Great,' raising our voices.

The Prophet came by us and said:

يَا أَيُّهَا النَّاسُ، ارْبَعُوا عَلى أَنْفُسِكُمْ، فَإِنَّكُمْ لَا تَدْعُونَ أَصَمَّ ولَا غَائِبًا، إنَّمَا تَدْعُونَ سَمِيعًا بَصِيرًا، إنَّ الَّذي تَدْعُونَ أَقْربُ إِلَى أَحَدِكُمْ مِنْ عُنُقِ رَاحِلَتِهِ،

يا عَبْدَاللهِ بْنَ قَيْسٍ، أَلَا أُعَلِّمُكَ كَلِمَةً مِنْ كُنُوزِ الْجَنَّةِ؟ لَا حَوْلَ وَلَا قُوَّةَ إِلَّا بِالله

O people! Be merciful to yourselves (i.e., don't raise your voices), for you are not calling a deaf or an absent one, but One Who is All-Hearer, All-Seer. The One Whom you call is closer to one of you than the neck of his animal.

O Abdullah bin Qais (Abu Musa's name) should I teach you a statement that is a treasure of Paradise: `La hawla wa la quwwata illa billah (there is no power or strength except from Allah).'

This Hadith was also recorded in the Two Sahihs, and Abu Dawud, An-Nasa'i, At-Tirmidhi and Ibn Majah recorded similar wordings.

Furthermore, Imam Ahmad recorded that Anas said that the Prophet said:

يَقُولُ اللهُ تَعَالى أَنَا عِنْدَ ظَنِّ عَبْدِي بِي وَأَنَا مَعَهُ إِذَا دَعَانِي

"Allah the Exalted said, `I am as My servant thinks of Me, and I am with him whenever he invokes Me.'

Allah accepts the Invocation

Imam Ahmad also recorded Abu Sa`id saying that the Prophet said:

مَا مِنْ مُسْلِمٍ يَدْعُو اللهَ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ بِدَعْوَةٍ لَيْسَ فِيها إِثْمٌ ولَا قَطِيعَةُ رَحِمٍ، إلَّا أَعْطَاهُ اللهُ بِهَا إِحْدَى ثَلَاثِ خِصَالٍ: إِمَّا أَنْ يُعَجِّل لَهُ دَعْوَتَهُ، وَإِمَّا أَنْ يَدَّخِرَهَا لَهُ فِي الأُخْرَى، وَإِمَّا أَنْ يَصْرِفَ عَنْهُ مِنَ السُّوءِ مِثْلَهَا

No Muslim supplicates to Allah with a Du`a that does not involve sin or cutting the relations of the womb, but Allah will grant him one of the three things.

o He will either hasten the response to his supplication,

o He will either hasten the response to his supplication,

o would turn an equivalent amount of evil away from him.''

They said, "What if we were to recite more (Du`a).''

He said, اللهُ أَكْثَر   There is more with Allah.

Abdullah the son of Imam Ahmad recorded Ubaydah bin As-Samit saying that the Prophet said:

مَا عَلى ظَهْرِ الأَرْضِ مِنْ رَجُلٍ مُسْلِمٍ يَدْعُو اللهَ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ بَدَعْوَةٍ إِلَّا آتَاهُ اللهُ إيَّاهَا، أَوْ كَفَّ عَنْهُ مِنَ السُّوءِ مِثْلَهَا مَا لَمْ يَدْعُ بِإِثْمٍ أَوْ قَطِيعَةِ رَحِم

There is no Muslim man on the face of the earth who supplicates to Allah but Allah would either grant it to him, or avert harm from him of equal proportions, as long as his supplication does not involve sin or cutting the relations of the womb.

At-Tirmidhi recorded this Hadith.

Imam Malik recorded that Abu Hurayrah narrated that Allah's Messenger said:

يُسْتَجَابُ لأَحَدِكُمْ مَالَمْ يَعْجَلْ، يَقُولُ: دَعَوْتُ فَلَمْ يُسْتَجَبْ لِي

One's supplication will be accepted as long as he does not get hasty and say, `I have supplicated but it has not been accepted from me.''

This Hadith is recorded in the Two Sahihs from Malik, and this is the wording of Al-Bukhari.

Muslim recorded that the Prophet said:

لا يَزَالُ يُسْتَجابُ لِلْعَبْدِ مَا لَمْ يَدْعُ بِإِثْم أَوْ قَطِيعَةِ رَحِمٍ مَا لَمْ يَسْتَعْجِل

The supplication of the servant will be accepted as long as he does not supplicate for what includes sin, or cutting the relations of the womb, and as long as he does not become hasty.

He was asked, "O Messenger of Allah! How does one become hasty?''

He said,

قَدْ دَعَوْتُ وقَدْ دَعَوْتُ، فَلَمْ أَرَ يُسْتَجَابُ لِي، فَيَسْتَحْسِرُ عِنْدَ ذلِكَ وَيَدَعُ الدُّعَاء

He says, `I supplicated and supplicated, but I do not see that my supplication is being accepted from me.' He thus looses interest and abandons supplicating (to Allah).

Three Persons Whose Supplication will not be rejected

In the Musnad of Imam Ahmad and the Sunans of At-Tirmidhi, An-Nasa'i and Ibn Majah it is recorded that;

Abu Hurayrah narrated that Allah's Messenger said:

ثَلاَثةٌ لَا تُرَدُّ دَعْوَتُهُمْ: الْإمَامُ الْعَادِلُ، وَالصَّائِمُ حَتَّى يُفْطِرَ، وَدَعْوَةُ الْمَظْلُومِ، يَرْفَعُهَا اللهُ دُونَ الْغَمَامِ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ، وَتُفْتَحُ لَهَا أَبْوَابُ السَّمَاءِ، يَقُولُ: بِعِزَّتِي لَأَنْصُرَنَّكَ وَلَوْ بَعْدَ حِين

Three persons will not have their supplication rejected:

ˇ the just ruler,

ˇ the fasting person until breaking the fast, and

ˇ the supplication of the oppressed person,

for Allah raises it above the clouds on the Day of Resurrection, and the doors of heaven will be opened for it, and Allah says, `By My grace! I will certainly grant it for you, even if after a while.'

187

أُحِلَّ لَكُمْ لَيْلَةَ الصِّيَامِ الرَّفَثُ إِلَى نِسَآئِكُمْ

It is made lawful for you to have sexual relations with your wives on the night of As-Siyam (fasting).

هُنَّ لِبَاسٌ لَّكُمْ وَأَنتُمْ لِبَاسٌ لَّهُنَّ عَلِمَ اللَّهُ أَنَّكُمْ كُنتُمْ تَخْتانُونَ أَنفُسَكُمْ فَتَابَ عَلَيْكُمْ وَعَفَا عَنكُمْ

They are Libas (i.e., body-cover, or screen) for you and you are Libas for them. Allah knows that you used to deceive yourselves, so He turned to you (accepted your repentance) and forgave you.

فَالـنَ بَـشِرُوهُنَّ وَابْتَغُواْ مَا كَتَبَ اللَّهُ لَكُمْ وَكُلُواْ وَاشْرَبُواْ حَتَّى يَتَبَيَّنَ لَكُمُ الْخَيْطُ الأَبْيَضُ مِنَ الْخَيْطِ الأَسْوَدِ مِنَ الْفَجْرِ ثُمَّ أَتِمُّواْ الصِّيَامَ إِلَى الَّيْلِ

So now have sexual relations with them and seek that which Allah has ordained for you (offspring), and eat and drink until the white thread (light) of dawn appears to you distinct from the black thread (darkness of night), then complete your fast till the nightfall.

وَلاَ تُبَـشِرُوهُنَّ وَأَنتُمْ عَـكِفُونَ فِي الْمَسَـجِدِ تِلْكَ حُدُودُ اللَّهِ فَلاَ تَقْرَبُوهَا

And do not have sexual relations with them (your wives) while you are in Itikaf in the Masjids. These are the limits (set) by Allah, so approach them not.

كَذلِكَ يُبَيِّنُ اللَّهُ آيَاتِهِ لِلنَّاسِ لَعَلَّهُمْ يَتَّقُونَ

Thus does Allah make clear His Ayat to mankind that they may acquire Taqwa.

Eating, Drinking and Sexual Intercourse are allowed during the Nights of Ramadan

Allah says;

أُحِلَّ لَكُمْ لَيْلَةَ الصِّيَامِ الرَّفَثُ إِلَى نِسَآئِكُمْ ...  

It is made lawful for you to have sexual relations with your wives on the night of As-Siyam (fasting).

These Ayat contain a relief from Allah for the Muslims by ending the practice that was observed in the early years of Islam. At that time, Muslims were allowed to eat, drink and have sexual intercourse only until the `Isha' (Night) prayer, unless one sleeps before the `Isha' prayer. Those who slept before `Isha' or offered the `Isha' prayer, were not allowed to drink, eat or sexual intercourse sex until the next night. The Muslims found that to be difficult for them.

According to Ibn Abbas, Ata and Mujahid, the Ayat used the word `Rafath' to indicate sexual intercourse,

Similar Tafsir was offered by Sa`id bin Jubayr, Tawus, Salim bin Abdullah, Amr bin Dinar, Al-Hasan, Qatadah, Az-Zuhri, Ad-Dahhak, Ibrahim An-Nakhai, As-Suddi, Ata Al-Khurasani and Muqatil bin Hayyan.

Allah said:

... هُنَّ لِبَاسٌ لَّكُمْ وَأَنتُمْ لِبَاسٌ لَّهُنَّ ...

They are Libas (i.e., body-cover, or screen) for you and you are Libas for them.

Ibn Abbas, Mujahid, Sa`id bin Jubayr, Al-Hasan, Qatadah, As-Suddi and Muqatil bin Hayyan said that this Ayah means,

"Your wives are a resort for you and you for them.''

Ar-Rabi bin Anas said, "They are your cover and you are their cover.''

In short, the wife and the husband are intimate and have sexual intercourse with each other, and this is why they were permitted to have sexual activity during the nights of Ramadan, so that matters are made easier for them. Abu Ishaq reported that Al-Bara bin Azib said,

"When the Companions of Allah's Messenger observed fast but would sleep before breaking their fast, they would continue fasting until the following night.

Qays bin Sirmah Al-Ansari was fasting one day and was working in his land. When the time to break the fast came, he went to his wife and said, `Do you have food?'

She said, `No. But I could try to get you some.'

His eyes then were overcome by sleep and when his wife came back, she found him asleep. She said, `Woe unto you! Did you sleep?'

In the middle of the next day, he lost consciousness and mentioned what had happened to the Prophet.

Then, this Ayah was revealed: أُحِلَّ لَكُمْ لَيْلَةَ الصِّيَامِ الرَّفَثُ إِلَى نِسَآئِكُمْ  (It is made lawful for you to have sexual relations with your wives on the night of As-Siyam (fasting)) until... وَكُلُواْ وَاشْرَبُواْ حَتَّى يَتَبَيَّنَ لَكُمُ الْخَيْطُ الأَبْيَضُ مِنَ الْخَيْطِ الأَسْوَدِ مِنَ الْفَجْرِ  (and eat and drink until the white thread (light) of dawn appears to you distinct from the black thread (darkness of night), then complete your fast till the nightfall).

Consequently, they were very delighted.''

Al-Bukhari reported this Hadith by Abu Ishaq who related that he heard Al-Bara say,

"When fasting Ramadan was ordained, Muslims used to refrain from sleeping with their wives the entire month, but some men used to deceive themselves.

Allah revealed: عَلِمَ اللّهُ أَنَّكُمْ كُنتُمْ تَخْتانُونَ أَنفُسَكُمْ فَتَابَ عَلَيْكُمْ وَعَفَا عَنكُمْ  (Allah knows that you used to deceive yourselves, so He turned to you (accepted your repentance) and forgave you)."

Ali bin Abu Talhah narrated that Ibn Abbas said,

"During the month of Ramadan, after Muslims would pray `Isha', they would not touch their women and food until the next night. Then some Muslims, including Umar bin Al-Khattab, touched (had sex with) their wives and had some food during Ramadan after `Isha'. They complained to Allah's Messenger. Then Allah sent down: عَلِمَ اللّهُ أَنَّكُمْ كُنتُمْ تَخْتانُونَ أَنفُسَكُمْ فَتَابَ عَلَيْكُمْ وَعَفَا عَنكُمْ فَالآنَ بَاشِرُوهُنَّ  (Allah knows that you used to deceive yourselves, so He turned to you (accepted your repentance) and forgave you. So now have sexual relations with them).''

This is the same narration that Al-Awfi related from Ibn Abbas.

Allah said:

... وَابْتَغُواْ مَا كَتَبَ اللّهُ لَكُمْ ...

...and seek that which Allah has ordained for you (offspring),

Abu Hurayrah, Ibn Abbas, Anas, Shurayh Al-Qadi, Mujahid, Ikrimah, Sa`id bin Jubayr, Ata, Ar-Rabi bin Anas, As-Suddi, Zayd bin Aslam, Hakam bin Utbah, Muqatil bin Hayyan, Al-Hasan Al-Basri, Ad-Dahhak, Qatadah, and others said that; this Ayah refers to having offspring.

Qatadah said that the Ayah means, "Seek the permission that Allah has allowed for you.''

Sa`id narrated that Qatadah said, وَابْتَغُواْ مَا كَتَبَ اللّهُ لَكُمْ  (and seek that which Allah has ordained for you).

Time for Suhur

Allah said:

... وَكُلُواْ وَاشْرَبُواْ حَتَّى يَتَبَيَّنَ لَكُمُ الْخَيْطُ الأَبْيَضُ مِنَ الْخَيْطِ الأَسْوَدِ مِنَ الْفَجْرِ ثُمَّ أَتِمُّواْ الصِّيَامَ إِلَى الَّليْلِ ...

...and eat and drink until the white thread (light) of dawn appears to you distinct from the black thread (darkness of night), then complete your fast till the nightfall.

Allah has allowed eating and drinking, along with having sexual intercourse, as we have stated, during any part of the night until the light of dawn is distinguished from the darkness of the night.

Allah has described that time as `distinguishing the white thread from the black thread.' He then made it clearer when He said: مِنَ الْفَجْرِ  (of dawn).

As stated in a Hadith that Imam Abu Abdullah Al-Bukhari recorded, Sahl bin Sa`d said, "When the following verse was revealed:

وَكُلُواْ وَاشْرَبُواْ حَتَّى يَتَبَيَّنَ لَكُمُ الْخَيْطُ الأَبْيَضُ مِنَ الْخَيْطِ الأَسْوَدِ  (Eat and drink until the white thread appears to you, distinct from the black thread), and (of dawn) was not revealed, some people who intended to fast, tied black and white threads to their legs and went on eating till they differentiated between the two.

Allah then revealed the words, (of dawn), and it became clear to them that it meant (the darkness of) night and (the light of) day.''

Al-Bukhari recorded that Ash-Sha`bi said that Adi said,

"I took two strings, one black and the other white and kept them under my pillow and went on looking at them throughout the night, but could not make any distinction between the two.

So, the next morning I went to Allah's Messenger and told him the whole story. He said:

إِنَّ وِسَادَكَ إِذًا لَعَرِيضٌ، أَنْ كَانَ الْخَيْطُ الْأَبْيَضُ وَالْأَسْوَدُ تَحْتَ وِسَادَتِك

Your pillow is very wide if the white and black threads are under it!

Some wordings for this Hadith read,

إِنَّكَ لَعَرِيضُ الْقَفَا

Your Qafa (back side of your neck) is wide!

Some people said that these words meant that Adi was not smart. This is a weak opinion.

The narration that Al-Bukhari collected explains this part of the Hadith.

Al-Bukhari recorded that Adi bin Hatim narrated:

I said, "O Messenger of Allah! What is the white thread from the black thread? Are they actual threads?''

He said:

إنَّكَ لَعَرِيضُ الْقَفَا أَنْ أَبْصَرْتَ الْخَيْطَيْنِ، ثُمَّ قَالَ: لَا بَلْ هُوَ سَوَادُ اللَّيْلِ وَبَيَاضُ النَّهَار

Your Qafa is wide if you see the two threads. Rather, they are the blackness of the night and the whiteness of the daylight.

Suhur is Recommended

Allah allowed eating and drinking until dawn, it represents proof that Suhur is encouraged, since it is a Rukhsah (concession or allowance) and Allah likes that the Rukhsah is accepted and implemented.

The authentic Sunnah indicates that eating the Suhur is encouraged.

It is reported in the Two Sahihs that Anas narrated that Allah's Messenger said:

تَسَحَّرُوا فَإِنَّ فِي السَّحُورِ بَرَكَة

Eat the Suhur, for there is a blessing in Suhur.

Muslim reported that Amr bin Al-As narrated that Allah's Messenger said:

إِنَّ فَصْلَ مَا بَيْنَ صِيَامِنَا وصِيَامِ أَهْلِ الْكِتَابِ أَكْلَةُ السَّحَر

The distinction between our fast and the fast of the People of the Book is the meal of Suhur.

Imam Ahmad reported that Abu Sa`id narrated that Allah's Messenger said:

السَّحُورُ أَكْلُهُ بَرَكَةٌ فَلَا تَدَعُوهُ، وَلَوْ أَنَّ أَحَدَكُمْ تَجْرَعُ جُرْعَةَ مَاءٍ، فَإِنَّ اللهَ وَمَلَائِكَتَهُ يُصَلُّون عَلَى الْمُتَسَحِّرِين

Suhur is a blessed meal. Hence, do not abandon it, even if one just takes a sip of water. Indeed, Allah and His angels send Salah (blessings) upon those who eat Suhur.

There are several other Hadiths that encourage taking the Suhur, even if it only consists of a sip of water.

It is preferred that Suhur be delayed until the time of dawn.

It is recorded in the Two Sahihs that Anas bin Malik narrated that Zayd bin Thabit said, "We had Suhur with Allah's Messenger and then went on to pray.''

Anas asked, "How much time was there between the Adhan (call to prayer) and the Suhur?''

He said, "The time that fifty Ayat take (to recite).''

Imam Ahmad recorded Abu Dharr saying that Allah's Messenger said:

لَا تَزَالُ أُمَّتِي بِخَيْرٍ مَا عَجَّلُوا الْإِفْطَارَ وَأَخَّرُوا السُّحُور

My Ummah will always retain goodness as long as they hasten in breaking the fast and delay the Suhur.

There are several Hadiths that narrate that,

the Prophet called Suhur "the blessed meal.''

There are narrations from several of the Salaf that;

they allowed the Suhur to be eaten later until close to Fajr.

This is reported from Abu Bakr, Umar, Ali, Ibn Mas`ud, Hudhayfah, Abu Hurayrah, Ibn Umar, Ibn Abbas and Zayd bin Thabit.

It is also reported from many of the Tabi`in, such as Muhammad bin Ali bin Husayn, Abu Mijlaz, Ibrahim An-Nakhai, Abu Ad-Duha, Abu Wa'il and other companions of Ibn Mas`ud.

This is also the opinion of Ata, Al-Hasan, Hakam bin Uyainah, Mujahid, Urwah bin Az-Zubayr, Abu Shatha Jabir bin Zayd, Al- Amash and Ma`mar bin Rashid.

We have mentioned the chains of narrations for their statements in our (Ibn Kathir's) book about Siyam (Fasting), and all praise is due to Allah.

It is also recorded in the Two Sahihs that Al-Qasim said that Aishah narrated that Allah's Messenger said:

لَا يَمْنَعُكُمْ أَذَانُ بِلَالٍ عَنْ سَحُورِكُمْ، فَإِنَّهُ يُنَادِي بِلَيْلٍ، فَكُلُوا وَاشْرَبُوا حَتَّى تَسْمَعُوا أَذَانَ ابْنِ أُمِّ مَكْتُومٍ، فَإِنَّهُ لاَ يُؤَذِّنُ حَتَّى يَطْلُعَ الْفَجْر

The Adhan pronounced by Bilal should not stop you from taking Suhur, for he pronounces the Adhan at night. Hence, eat and drink until you hear the Adhan by Ibn Umm Maktum, for he does not call the Adhan until dawn.

This is the wording collected by Al-Bukhari.

Imam Ahmad reported that Qays bin Talq quoted from his father that Allah's Messenger said:

لَيْسَ الْفَجْرُ الْمُسْتَطِيلَ فِي الْأُفُقِ وَلَكِنِ الْمُعْتَرِضُ الْأَحْمَر

Dawn is not the (ascending) glow of white light of the horizon. Rather, it is the red (radiating) light.

Abu Dawud and At-Tirmidhi also recorded this Hadith, but their wording is:

كُلُوا واشْرَبُوا، وَلَا يَهِيدَنَّكُمُ السَّاطِعُ الْمُصْعِدُ، فَكُلُوا واشْرَبُوا حَتَّى يَعْتَرِضَ لَكُمُ الْأَحْمَر

Eat and drink and do not be rushed by the ascending (white) light. Eat and drink until the redness (of the dawn) appears.

Ibn Jarir (At-Tabari) recorded that Samurah bin Jundub narrated that Allah's Messenger said:

لَا يَغُرَّنَّكُمْ أَذَانُ بِلَالٍ وَلَا هَذَا الْبَيَاضُ لِعَمُودِ الصُّبْحِ حَتَّى يَسْتَطِير

Do not be stopped by Bilal's Adhan or the (ascending) whiteness, until it spreads.

Muslim also recorded this Hadith.

There is no Harm in beginning the Fast while Junub (a state of major ritual impurity)

Issue:

Among the benefits of allowing sexual activity, eating and drinking until dawn for those who are fasting, is that it is allowed to start the fast while Junub (in the state of impurity after sexual discharge), and there is no harm in this case if one takes a bath any time in the morning after waking up, and completes the fast.

This is the opinion of the Four Imams and the majority of the scholars.

Al-Bukhari and Muslim recorded that Aishah and Umm Salamah said that;

Allah's Messenger used to wake up while Junub from sexual intercourse, not wet dreams, and he would take a bath and fast.

Umm Salamah added that he would not break his fast or make up for that day.

Muslim recorded that Aishah said that a man asked:

"O Messenger of Allah! The (Dawn) prayer time starts while I am Junub, should I fast?''

Allah's Messenger replied,

وَأَنَا تُدْرِكُنِي الصَّلاةُ وَأَنَا جُنُبٌ فَأَصُوم

And I, the prayer time starts while I am Junub and I fast.

He said, "You are not like us, O Messenger of Allah! Allah has forgiven your previous and latter sins.''

Allah's Messenger said:

وَاللهِ إِنَّي لَأَرْجُو أَنْ أَكُونَ أَخْشَاكُمْ للهِ وَأَعْلَمَكُمْ بِمَا أَتَّقِي

By Allah! I hope that I have the most fear from Allah among you and the best knowledge of what Taqwa is.

Fasting ends at Sunset

Allah said:

... ثُمَّ أَتِمُّواْ الصِّيَامَ إِلَى الَّليْلِ ...

...then complete your fast till the nightfall.

This Ayah orders breaking the fast at sunset.

It is recorded in the Two Sahihs that Umar bin Al-Khattab said that Allah's Messenger said:

إِذَا أَقْبَلَ اللَّيْلُ مِنْ ههُنَا، وَأَدْبَرَ النَّهَارُ مِنْ ههُنَا فَقَدْ أَفْطَرَ الصَّائِم

If the night comes from this direction (the east), and the day departs from that direction (the west), then the fasting person breaks his fast.

It is reported that Sahl bin Sa`d As-Sa`idi narrated that Allah's Messenger said:

لَا يَزَالُ النَّاسُ بِخَيْرٍ مَا عَجَّلُوا الْفِطْر

The people will retain goodness as long as they hasten in breaking the fast.

Imam Ahmad recorded that Abu Hurayrah narrated that the Prophet said:

يَقُولُ اللهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ: إِنَّ أَحَبَّ عِبَادِي إِلَيَّ أَعْجَلُهُمْ فِطْرًا

Allah the Exalted said, `the dearest among My servants to Me are those who hasten in breaking the fast the most.'

At-Tirmidhi recorded this Hadith and said that this Hadith is Hasan Gharib.

Prohibition of Uninterrupted Fasting (Wisal)

There are several authentic Hadiths that prohibit Al-Wisal, which means continuing the fast through the night to the next night, without eating.

Imam Ahmad recorded Abu Hurayrah saying that Allah's Messenger said:

لَا تُوَاصِلُوا

Do not practice Al-Wisal in fasting.

So, they said to him, "But you practice Al-Wisal, O Allah's Messenger!''

The Prophet replied,

فَإِنِّي لَسْتُ مِثْلَكُمْ إِنِّي أَبِيتُ يُطْعِمُنِي رَبِّي وَيَسْقِينِي

"I am not like you, I am given food and drink during my sleep by my Lord."

So, when the people refused to stop Al-Wisal, the Prophet fasted two days and two nights (along with those who practiced Wisal) and then they saw the crescent moon (of the month of Shawwal). The Prophet said to them (angrily):

لَوْ تَأَخَّرَ الْهِلَالُ لَزِدْتُكُم

If the crescent had not appeared, I would have made you fast for a longer period.

That was as a punishment for them (when they refused to stop practicing Al-Wisal).

This Hadith is also recorded in the Sahihayn.

The prohibition of Al-Wisal was also mentioned in a number of other narrations. It is a fact that practicing Al-Wisal was one of the special qualities of the Prophet, for he was capable and assisted in his practice of it. It is obvious that the food and drink that the Prophet used to get while practicing Al-Wisal was spiritual and not material, otherwise he would not be practicing Al-Wisal.

We should mention that it is allowed to refrain from breaking the fast from sunset until before dawn (Suhur).

A Hadith narrated by Abu Sa`id Khudri states that Allah's Messenger said:

لَا تُوَاصِلُوا فَأَيُّكُمْ أَرَادَ أَنْ يُوَاصِلَ فَلْيُوَاصِلْ إِلَى السَّحَر

Do not practice Al-Wisal, but whoever wishes is allowed to practice it until the Suhur.

They said, "You practice Al-Wisal, O Messenger of Allah!''

He said:

إِنِّي لَسْتُ كَهَيْئَتِكُمْ، إِنِّي أَبِيتُ لِي مُطْعِمٌ يُطْعِمُنِي وَسَاقٍ يَسْقِينِي

I am not similar to you, for I have One Who makes me eat and drink during the night.

This Hadith is also collected in the Two Sahihs.

The Rulings of Itikaf

Allah said:

... وَلاَ تُبَاشِرُوهُنَّ وَأَنتُمْ عَاكِفُونَ فِي الْمَسَاجِدِ ...

And do not have sexual relations with them (your wives) while you are in Itikaf in the Masjids.

Ali bin Abu Talhah reported that Ibn Abbas said,

"This Ayah is about the man who stays in Itikaf at the mosque during Ramadan or other months, Allah prohibited him from touching (having sexual intercourse with) women, during the night or day, until he finishes his Itikaf.''

Ad-Dahhak said,

"Formerly, the man who practiced Itikaf would go out of the mosque and, if he wished, would have sexual intercourse (with his wife). Allah then said: وَلاَ تُبَاشِرُوهُنَّ وَأَنتُمْ عَاكِفُونَ فِي الْمَسَاجِدِ  (And do not have sexual relations with them (your wives) while you are in Itikaf in the Masjids.

meaning, `Do not touch your wives as long as you are in Itikaf, whether you were in the mosque or outside of it'.''

It is also the opinion of Mujahid, Qatadah and several other scholars, that; the Muslims used to have sexual intercourse with the wife while in Itikaf if they departed the mosque until the Ayah was revealed.

Ibn Abu Hatim commented, "It was reported that Ibn Mas`ud, Muhammad bin Ka`b, Mujahid, Ata Al-Hasan, Qatadah, Ad-Dahhak, As-Suddi, Ar-Rabi bin Anas and Muqatil said that the Ayah means,

`Do not touch the wife while in Itikaf.'''

What Ibn Abu Hatim reported from these people is the agreed upon practice among the scholars.

Those who are in Itikaf are not allowed to have sexual intercourse as long as they are still in Itikaf in the mosque. If one has to leave the mosque to attend to a need, such as to relieve the call of nature or to eat, he is not allowed to kiss or embrace his wife or to busy himself with other than his Itikaf. He is not even allowed to visit ailing persons, but he can merely ask about their condition while passing by.

Itikaf has several other rulings that are explained in the books (of Fiqh), and we have mentioned several of these rulings at the end of our book on Siyam (Fasting), all praise is due to Allah.

Furthermore, the scholars of Fiqh used to follow their explanation of the rules for fasting with the explanation of the rules for Itikaf, as this is the way these acts of worship were mentioned in the Qur'an.

By mentioning Itikaf after fasting, Allah draws attention to practicing Itikaf during the month of the fast, especially the last part of the month. The Sunnah of Allah's Messenger is that he used to perform Itikaf during the last ten nights of the month of Ramadan until he died.

Afterwards, the Prophet's wives used to perform Itikaf as the Two Sahihs recorded from Aishah the Mother of the believers.

It is reported in the Two Sahihs that;

Safiyyah, the daughter of Huyai, went to Allah's Messenger to visit him in the mosque while he was in Itikaf.

She had a talk with him for a while, then she got up in order to return home. The Prophet accompanied her back home, as it was night. Her house was at Usamah bin Zayd's house on the edge of Al-Madinah.

While they were walking, two Ansari men met them and passed by them in a hurry, for they were shy to bother the Prophet while he was walking with his wife. He told them:

عَلى رِسْلِكُمَا، إِنَّهَا صَفِيَّةُ بِنْتُ حُيَي

Do not run away! She is (my wife) Safiyyah bint Huyai.

Both of them said, "All praise is due to Allah, How dare we think of any evil? O Allah's Messenger!''

The Prophet said (to them):

إِنَّ الشَّيْطَانَ يَجْرِي مِنِ ابْنِ آدَمَ مَجْرَى الدَّمِ، وَإِنِّي خَشِيتُ أَنْ يَقْذِفَ فِي قُلُوبِكُمَا شَيْئًا، أَوْ قَالَ: شَرًّا

Shaytan reaches everywhere in the human body, that the blood reaches. I was afraid lest Shaytan might suggest an evil thought in your minds.

Imam Ash-Shafii commented,

"Allah's Messenger sought to teach his Ummah to instantly eliminate any evil thought, so that they do not fall into the prohibited. They (the two Ansari men) had more fear of Allah than to think evil of the Prophet. Allah knows best.''

The Ayah (2:187) prohibits sexual intercourse and anything like kissing or embracing that might lead to it during Itikaf. As for having the wife helping the husband, it is allowed.

It is reported in the Two Sahihs that Aishah said, "Allah's Messenger would bring his head near me (in her room) and I would comb his hair, while I was on my menses. He would enter the room only to attend to what a man needs.''

Allah's statement:

... تِلْكَ حُدُودُ اللّهِ ...

These are the limits (set) by Allah,

means, `This is what We have explained, ordained, specified, allowed and prohibited for fasting. We also mentioned the fast's objectives, what is permitted during it, and what is required of it. These are the set limits that Allah has legislated and explained, so do not come near them or transgress them.'

... َلاَ تَقْرَبُوهَا ...

so approach them not.

Abdur-Rahman bin Zayd bin Aslam said,

"Allah's set limits mentioned in the Ayah mean these four limits (and he then recited): أُحِلَّ لَكُمْ لَيْلَةَ الصِّيَامِ الرَّفَثُ إِلَى نِسَآئِكُمْ  (It is made lawful for you to have sexual relations with your wives on the night of As-Siyam (fasting).) and he recited up to:  ثُمَّ أَتِمُّواْ الصِّيَامَ إِلَى الَّليْلِ  (then complete your Sawm (fast) till the nightfall).

My father and other's used to say similarly and recite the same Ayah to us.''

Allah said:

... كَذَلِكَ يُبَيِّنُ اللّهُ آيَاتِهِ لِلنَّاسِ ...

Thus does Allah make clear His Ayat to mankind,

meaning, `Just as He explains the fast and its rulings, He also explains the other rulings by the words of His servant and Messenger, Muhammad.'

Allah continues:

... لِلنَّاسِ لَعَلَّهُمْ يَتَّقُونَ ﴿١٨٧﴾

to mankind that they may attain Taqwa.

meaning, `So that they know how to acquire the true guidance and how to worship (Allah).'

Similarly, Allah said:

هُوَ الَّذِى يُنَزِّلُ عَلَى عَبْدِهِ ءَايَـتٍ بَيِّنَـتٍ لِّيُخْرِجَكُمْ مِّنَ الظُّلُمَـتِ إِلَى النُّورِ وَإِنَّ اللَّهَ بِكُمْ لَرَءُوفٌ رَّحِيمٌ

It is He Who sends down manifest Ayat to His servant (Muhammad) that He may bring you out from (types of) darkness into the light. And verily, Allah is to you full of kindness, Most Merciful. (57:9)

188

وَلاَ تَأْكُلُواْ أَمْوَلَكُمْ بَيْنَكُم بِالْبَاطِلِ وَتُدْلُواْ بِهَآ إِلَى الْحُكَّامِ لِتَأْكُلُواْ فَرِيقًا مِّنْ أَمْوَالِ النَّاسِ بِالإِثْمِ وَأَنتُمْ تَعْلَمُونَ 8888

And eat up not one another's property unjustly (in any illegal way, e.g., stealing, robbing, deceiving), nor give bribery to the rulers (judges before presenting your cases) that you may knowingly eat up a part of the property of others sinfully.

Bribery is prohibited and is a Sin

Allah says;

وَلاَ تَأْكُلُواْ أَمْوَالَكُم بَيْنَكُم بِالْبَاطِلِ وَتُدْلُواْ بِهَا إِلَى الْحُكَّامِ لِتَأْكُلُواْ فَرِيقًا مِّنْ أَمْوَالِ النَّاسِ بِالإِثْمِ وَأَنتُمْ تَعْلَمُونَ ﴿١٨٨﴾  

And eat up not one another's property unjustly (in any illegal way, e.g., stealing, robbing, deceiving), nor give bribery to the rulers (judges before presenting your cases) that you may knowingly eat up a part of the property of others sinfully.

Ali bin Abu Talhah reported that Ibn Abbas said,

"This Ayah is about the indebted person when there is no evidence of the loan. So he denies taking the loan and the case goes to the authorities, even though he knows that it is not his money and that he is a sinner, consuming what is not allowed for him.''

This opinion was also reported from Mujahid, Sa`id bin Jubayr, Ikrimah, Al-Hasan, Qatadah, As-Suddi, Muqatil bin Hayyan and Abdur-Rahman bin Zayd bin Aslam. They all stated,

"Do not dispute when you know that you are being unjust.''

The Judge's Ruling does not allow the Prohibited or prohibit the Lawful

It is reported in the Two Sahihs that Umm Salamah narrated that Allah's Messenger said:

أَلَا إِنَّمَا أَنَا بَشَرٌ، وَإِنَّمَا يَأْتِينِي الْخَصْمُ، فَلَعَلَّ بَعْضَكُمْ أَنْ يَكُونَ أَلْحَنَ بِحُجَّتِهِ مِنْ بَعْضٍ فَأَقْضِيَ لَهُ، فَمَنْ قَضَيْتُ لَهُ بِحَقِّ مُسْلِمٍ فَإِنَّمَا هِيَ قِطْعَةٌ مِنْ نَارٍ، فَلْيَحْمِلْهَا أَوْ لِيَذَرْهَا

I am only human! You people present your cases to me, and as some of you may be more eloquent and persuasive in presenting his argument, I might issue a judgment in his benefit. So, if I give a Muslim's right to another, I am really giving him a piece of fire; so he should not take it.

The Ayah and the Hadith prove that the judgment of the authorities in any case does not change the reality of the truth. Hence, the ruling does not allow what is in fact prohibited or prohibit what is in fact allowed. It is only applicable in that case. So if the ruling agrees with the truth, then there is no harm in this case. Otherwise, the judge will acquire his reward, while the cheater will acquire the evil burden. This is why Allah said:

وَلاَ تَأْكُلُواْ أَمْوَالَكُم بَيْنَكُم بِالْبَاطِلِ وَتُدْلُواْ بِهَا إِلَى الْحُكَّامِ لِتَأْكُلُواْ فَرِيقًا مِّنْ أَمْوَالِ النَّاسِ بِالإِثْمِ وَأَنتُمْ تَعْلَمُونَ

And eat up not one another's property unjustly, nor give bribery to the rulers (judges before presenting your cases) that you may knowingly eat up a part of the property of others sinfully.

meaning, `While you know the falsehood of what you claim.'

Qatadah said,

"O son of Adam! Know that the judge's ruling does not allow you what is prohibited or prohibit you from what is allowed. The judge only rules according to his best judgment and according to the testimony of the witnesses. The judge is only human and is bound to make mistakes.

Know that if the judge erroneously rules in some one's favor, then that person will still encounter the dispute when the disputing parties meet Allah on the Day of Resurrection. Then, the unjust person will be judged swiftly and precisely with that which will surpass whatever he acquired by the erroneous judgment he received in the life of this world.'' 

189

يَسْـَلُونَكَ عَنِ الأَهِلَّةِ

They ask you (O Muhammad) about the crescents.

قُلْ هِىَ مَوَاقِيتُ لِلنَّاسِ وَالْحَجِّ

Say: "These are signs to mark fixed periods of time for mankind and for the pilgrimage.''

وَلَيْسَ الْبِرُّ بِأَن تَأْتُواْ الْبُيُوتَ مِن ظُهُورِهَا وَلَـكِنَّ الْبِرَّ مَنِ اتَّقَى وَأْتُواْ الْبُيُوتَ مِنْ أَبْوَبِهَا وَاتَّقُواْ اللَّهَ لَعَلَّكُمْ تُفْلِحُونَ

It is not Al-Birr (piety, righteousness, etc.) that you enter the houses from the back, but Al-Birr is from Taqwa. So enter houses through their proper doors, and have Taqwa of Allah that you may be successful.

The Crescent Moons

Allah says;

يَسْأَلُونَكَ عَنِ الأهِلَّةِ قُلْ هِيَ مَوَاقِيتُ لِلنَّاسِ وَالْحَجِّ ...  

They ask you (O Muhammad) about the crescents. Say: "These are signs to mark fixed periods of time for mankind and for the pilgrimage.''

Al-Awfi related that Ibn Abbas said,

"The people asked Allah's Messenger about the crescent moons. Thereafter, this Ayah was revealed, so that they mark their acts of worship, the Iddah (the period of time a divorced woman or a widow is required to wait before remarrying) of their women and the time of their Hajj (pilgrimage to Makkah).''

Abdur-Razzaq reported that Ibn Umar narrated that Allah's Messenger said:

جَعَلَ اللهُ الْأَهِلَّةَ مَوَاقِيتَ لِلنَّاسِ، فَصُومُوا لِرُؤْيَتِهِ، وَأَفْطِرُوا لِرُؤْيَتِهِ، فَإِنْ غُمَّ عَلَيْكُمْ فَعُدُّوا ثَلَاثِينَ يَوْمًا

Allah has made the crescents signs to mark fixed periods of time for mankind. Hence, fast on seeing it (the crescent for Ramadan) and break the fast on seeing it (the crescent for Shawwal). If it (the crescent) was obscure to you then count thirty days (mark that month as thirty days).

This Hadith was also collected by Al-Hakim in his Mustadrak, and he said, "The chain is Sahih, and they (Al-Bukhari and Muslim) did not recorded it."

Righteousness comes from Taqwa

Allah said:

... وَلَيْسَ الْبِرُّ بِأَنْ تَأْتُوْاْ الْبُيُوتَ مِن ظُهُورِهَا وَلَـكِنَّ الْبِرَّ مَنِ اتَّقَى وَأْتُواْ الْبُيُوتَ مِنْ أَبْوَابِهَا ...

It is not Al-Birr (piety, righteousness, etc.) that you enter the houses from the back, but Al-Birr is from Taqwa. So enter houses through their proper doors.

Al-Bukhari recorded that Al-Bara said,

"During the time of Jahiliyyah, they used to enter the house from the back upon assuming the Ihram. Thereafter, Allah revealed (the following Ayah: وَلَيْسَ الْبِرُّ بِأَنْ تَأْتُوْاْ الْبُيُوتَ مِن ظُهُورِهَا وَلَـكِنَّ الْبِرَّ مَنِ اتَّقَى وَأْتُواْ الْبُيُوتَ مِنْ أَبْوَابِهَا (It is not Al-Birr (piety, righteousness, etc.) that you enter the houses from the back but Al-Birr is from Taqwa. So enter houses through their proper doors)."

Abu Dawud At-Tayalisi recorded the same Hadith from Al-Bara but with the wording;

"The Ansar used to enter their houses from the back when returning from a journey. Thereafter, this Ayah (2:189 above) was revealed...''

Al-Hasan said,

"When some people during the time of Jahiliyyah would leave home to travel, and then decide not to travel, they would not enter the house from its door. Rather, they would climb over the back wall. Allah the Exalted said: وَلَيْسَ الْبِرُّ بِأَنْ تَأْتُوْاْ الْبُيُوتَ مِن ظُهُورِهَا  (It is not Al-Birr (piety, righteousness) that you enter the houses from the back).''

Allah's statement:

... وَاتَّقُواْ اللّهَ لَعَلَّكُمْ تُفْلِحُونَ ﴿١٨٩﴾

...and have Taqwa of Allah that you may be successful.

Have Taqwa of Allah, means to do what He has commanded you and refrain from what He has forbidden for you,  لَعَلَّكُمْ تُفْلِحُونَ  (that you may be successful), tomorrow when you stand before Him and He thus rewards you perfectly. 

190

وَقَـتِلُواْ فِي سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ الَّذِينَ يُقَـتِلُونَكُمْ وَلاَ تَعْتَدُواْ إِنَّ اللَّهَ لاَ يُحِبُّ الْمُعْتَدِينَ

And fight in the way of Allah those who fight you, but transgress not the limits. Truly, Allah likes not the transgressors.

191

وَاقْتُلُوهُمْ حَيْثُ ثَقِفْتُمُوهُمْ وَأَخْرِجُوهُمْ مِّنْ حَيْثُ أَخْرَجُوكُمْ وَالْفِتْنَةُ أَشَدُّ مِنَ الْقَتْلِ

And kill them wherever you find them, and turn them out from where they have turned you out. And Al-Fitnah is worse than killing.

وَلاَ تُقَـتِلُوهُمْ عِندَ الْمَسْجِدِ الْحَرَامِ حَتَّى يُقَـتِلُوكُمْ فِيهِ

And fight not with them at Al-Masjid Al-Haram (the sanctuary at Makkah), unless they (first) fight you there.

فَإِن قَـتَلُوكُمْ فَاقْتُلُوهُمْ كَذَلِكَ جَزَآءُ الْكَـفِرِينَ

But if they attack you, then kill them. Such is the recompense of the disbelievers.

192

فَإِنِ انتَهَوْاْ فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ غَفُورٌ رَّحِيمٌ

But if they cease, then Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.

193

وَقَـتِلُوهُمْ حَتَّى لاَ تَكُونَ فِتْنَةٌ وَيَكُونَ الدِّينُ للَّهِ فَإِنِ انتَهَواْ فَلاَ عُدْوَنَ إِلاَّ عَلَى الظَّـلِمِينَ

And fight them until there is no more Fitnah (disbelief and worshipping of others along with Allah) and the religion (all and every kind of worship) is for Allah (Alone). But if they cease, let there be no transgression except against Az-Zalimin (the polytheists and wrongdoers).

The Command to fight Those Who fight Muslims and killing Them wherever They are found

Allah command's;

وَقَاتِلُواْ فِي سَبِيلِ اللّهِ الَّذِينَ يُقَاتِلُونَكُمْ وَلاَ تَعْتَدُواْ إِنَّ اللّهَ لاَ يُحِبِّ الْمُعْتَدِينَ ﴿١٩٠﴾  

And fight in the way of Allah those who fight you, but transgress not the limits. Truly, Allah likes not the transgressors.

Abu Jafar Ar-Razi said that Ar-Rabi bin Anas said that Abu Al-Aliyah commented on what Allah said: وَقَاتِلُواْ فِي سَبِيلِ اللّهِ الَّذِينَ يُقَاتِلُونَكُمْ  (And fight in the way of Allah those who fight you),

"This was the first Ayah about fighting that was revealed in Al-Madinah. Ever since it was revealed, Allah's Messenger used to fight only those who fought him and avoid non-combatants. Later, Surah Bara'h was revealed.''

Abdur-Rahman bin Zayd bin Aslam said similarly, then he said that; this was later abrogated by the Ayah:  فَاقْتُلُواْ الْمُشْرِكِينَ حَيْثُ وَجَدتُّمُوهُمْ  (then kill them wherever you find them), (9:5).

However, this statement is not plausible, because Allah's statement: الَّذِينَ يُقَاتِلُونَكُمْ (...those who fight you) applies only to fighting the enemies who are engaged in fighting Islam and its people. So the Ayah means,

`Fight those who fight you', just as Allah said in another Ayah: وَقَاتِلُواْ الْمُشْرِكِينَ كَآفَّةً كَمَا يُقَاتِلُونَكُمْ كَآفَّةً  (...and fight against the Mushrikin collectively as they fight against you collectively), (9:36).

This is why Allah said later in the Ayah: وَاقْتُلُوهُمْ حَيْثُ ثَقِفْتُمُوهُمْ وَأَخْرِجُوهُم مِّنْ حَيْثُ أَخْرَجُوكُمْ  (And kill them wherever you find them, and turn them out from where they have turned you out),

meaning, `Your energy should be spent on fighting them, just as their energy is spent on fighting you, and on expelling them from the areas from which they have expelled you, as a law of equality in punishment.'

The Prohibition of mutilating the Dead and stealing from the captured Goods

Allah said:

... وَلاَ تَعْتَدُواْ إِنَّ اللّهَ لاَ يُحِبِّ الْمُعْتَدِينَ

but transgress not the limits. Truly, Allah likes not the transgressors.

This Ayah means, `Fight for the sake of Allah and do not be transgressors,' such as, by committing prohibitions.

Al-Hasan Al-Basri stated that transgression (indicated by the Ayah),

"includes mutilating the dead, theft (from the captured goods), killing women, children and old people who do not participate in warfare, killing priests and residents of houses of worship, burning down trees and killing animals without real benefit.''

This is also the opinion of Ibn Abbas, Umar bin Abdul-Aziz, Muqatil bin Hayyan and others.

Muslim recorded in his Sahih that Buraydah narrated that Allah's Messenger said:

اغْزُوا فِي سَبِيلِ اللهِ، قَاتِلُوا مَنْ كَفَرَ بِاللهِ، اغْزُوا وَلَا تَغُلُّوا وَلَا تَغْدِرُوا وَلَا تَمْثُلُوا وَلَا تَقْتُلُوا وَلِيدًا وَلَا أَصْحَابَ الصَّوَامِع

Fight for the sake of Allah and fight those who disbelieve in Allah. Fight, but do not steal (from the captured goods), commit treachery, mutilate (the dead), or kill a child, or those who reside in houses of worship.

It is reported in the Two Sahihs that Ibn Umar said, "A woman was found dead during one of the Prophet's battles and the Prophet then forbade killing women and children.''

There are many other Hadiths on this subject.

Shirk is worse than Killing

Allah says;

وَاقْتُلُوهُمْ حَيْثُ ثَقِفْتُمُوهُمْ وَأَخْرِجُوهُم مِّنْ حَيْثُ أَخْرَجُوكُمْ وَالْفِتْنَةُ أَشَدُّ مِنَ الْقَتْلِ ...  

And kill them wherever you find them, and turn them out from where they have turned you out. And Al-Fitnah is worse than killing.

Since Jihad involves killing and shedding the blood of men, Allah indicated that these men are committing disbelief in Allah, associating with Him (in the worship) and hindering from His path, and this is a much greater evil and more disastrous than killing.

Abu Malik commented about what Allah said: وَالْفِتْنَةُ أَشَدُّ مِنَ الْقَتْلِ (And Al-Fitnah is worse than killing), "meaning what you (disbelievers) are committing is much worse than killing.''

Abu Al-Aliyah, Mujahid, Sa`id bin Jubayr, Ikrimah, Al-Hasan, Qatadah, Ad-Dahhak and Ar-Rabi bin Anas said that what Allah said: وَالْفِتْنَةُ أَشَدُّ مِنَ الْقَتْلِ (And Al-Fitnah is worse than killing),

"Shirk (polytheism) is worse than killing.''

Fighting in the Sacred Area is prohibited, except in Self-Defense

Allah said:

... وَلاَ تُقَاتِلُوهُمْ عِندَ الْمَسْجِدِ الْحَرَامِ ...

And fight not with them at Al-Masjid Al-Haram (the sanctuary at Makkah).

It is reported in the Two Sahihs that the Prophet said:

إنَّ هَذَا الْبَلَدَ حَرَّمَهُ اللهُ يَوْمَ خَلَقَ السَّموَاتِ وَالْأَرْضَ، فَهُوَ حَرَامٌ بِحُرْمَةِ اللهِ إِلى يَوْمِ الْقِيَامَةِ،

Allah has made this city a sanctuary since the day He created the heavens and the earth. So, it is a sanctuary by Allah's decree till the Day of Resurrection.

وَلَمْ يَحِلَّ لِي إِلَّا سَاعَةً مِنْ نَهَارٍ، وَإِنَّهَا سَاعَتِي هذِهِ حَرامٌ بحُرْمَةِ اللهِ إِلى يَوْمِ الْقِيامَةِ،

Fighting in it was made legal for me only for an hour in the daytime. So, it (i.e., Makkah) is a sanctuary, by Allah's decree, from now on until the Day of Resurrection.

لا يُعْضَدُ شَجَرُهُ، وَلَا يُخْتَلىَ خَلَاهُ،

Its trees should not be cut, and its grass should not be uprooted.

فَإِنْ أَحَدٌ تَرَخَّصَ بِقِتَالِ رَسُولِ اللهِصلى الله عليه وسلّم، فَقُولُوا: إنَّ اللهَ أَذِنَ لِرَسُولِهِ وَلَمْ يَأْذَنْ لَكُم

If anyone mentions the fighting in it that occurred by Allah's Messenger, then say that Allah allowed His Messenger, but did not allow you.

In this Hadith, Allah's Messenger mentions fighting the people of Makkah when he conquered it by force, leading to some deaths among the polytheists in the area of the Khandamah. This occurred after the Prophet proclaimed:

مَنْ أَغْلَقَ بَابَهُ فهُوَ آمِنٌ،وَمَنْ دَخَلَ الْمَسْجِدَ فَهُو آمِنٌ، ومَنْ دَخَلَ دَارَ أَبِي سُفْيَانَ فَهُوَ آمِن

Whoever closed his door is safe. Whoever entered the (Sacred) Mosque is safe. Whoever entered the house of Abu Sufyan is also safe.

Allah said:

... حَتَّى يُقَاتِلُوكُمْ فِيهِ فَإِن قَاتَلُوكُمْ فَاقْتُلُوهُمْ كَذَلِكَ جَزَاء الْكَافِرِينَ ﴿١٩١﴾

...unless they (first) fight you there. But if they attack you, then kill them. Such is the recompense of the disbelievers.

Allah states: `Do not fight them in the area of the Sacred Mosque unless they start fighting you in it. In this case, you are allowed to fight them and kill them to stop their aggression.'

Hence, Allah's Messenger took the pledge from his Companions under the tree (in the area of Al-Hudaybiyyah) to fight (the polytheists), after the tribes of Quraysh and their allies, Thaqif and other groups, collaborated against the Muslims (to stop them from entering Makkah to visit the Sacred House). Then, Allah stopped the fighting before it started between them and said:

وَهُوَ الَّذِى كَفَّ أَيْدِيَهُمْ عَنكُمْ وَأَيْدِيَكُمْ عَنْهُم بِبَطْنِ مَكَّةَ مِن بَعْدِ أَنْ أَظْفَرَكُمْ عَلَيْهِمْ

And He it is Who has withheld their hands from you and your hands from them in the midst of Makkah, after He had made you victors over them. (48:24)

and,

وَلَوْلاَ رِجَالٌ مُّؤْمِنُونَ وَنِسَآءٌ مُّؤْمِنَـتٌ لَّمْ تَعْلَمُوهُمْ أَن تَطَئُوهُمْ فَتُصِيبَكمْ مِّنْهُمْ مَّعَرَّةٌ بِغَيْرِ عِلْمٍ لِّيُدْخِلَ اللَّهُ فِى رَحْمَتِهِ مَن يَشَآءُ لَوْ تَزَيَّلُواْ لَعَذَّبْنَا الَّذِينَ كَفَرُواْ مِنْهُمْ عَذَاباً أَلِيماً

Had there not been believing men and believing women whom you did not know, that you may kill them and on whose account a sin would have been committed by you without (your) knowledge, that Allah might bring into His mercy whom He wills ـ if they (the believers and the disbelievers) had been apart, We verily, would have punished those of them who disbelieved with painful torment. (48:25)

Allah's statement:

فَإِنِ انتَهَوْاْ فَإِنَّ اللّهَ غَفُورٌ رَّحِيمٌ ﴿١٩٢﴾  

But if they cease, then Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.

which means, `If they (polytheists) cease fighting you in the Sacred Area, and come to Islam and repent, then Allah will forgive them their sins, even if they had before killed Muslims in Allah's Sacred Area.'

Indeed, Allah's forgiveness encompasses every sin, whatever its enormity, when the sinner repents it.

The Order to fight until there is no more Fitnah

Allah then commanded fighting the disbelievers when He said:

وَقَاتِلُوهُمْ حَتَّى لاَ تَكُونَ فِتْنَةٌ ...  

And fight them until there is no more Fitnah,

meaning, Shirk.

This is the opinion of Ibn Abbas, Abu Al-Aliyah, Mujahid, Al-Hasan, Qatadah, Ar-Rabi, Muqatil bin Hayyan, As-Suddi and Zayd bin Aslam.

Allah's statement:

... وَيَكُونَ الدِّينُ لِلّهِ ...

...and the religion (all and every kind of worship) is for Allah (Alone).

means, `So that the religion of Allah becomes dominant above all other religions.'

It is reported in the Two Sahihs that Abu Musa Al-Ashari said: "The Prophet was asked, `O Allah's Messenger! A man fights out of bravery, and another fights to show off, which of them fights in the cause of Allah?'

The Prophet said:

مَنْ قَاتَلَ لِتَكُونَ كَلِمَةُ اللهِ هِيَ الْعُلْيا فَهُوَ فِي سَبِيلِ الله

He who fights so that Allah's Word is superior, then he fights in Allah's cause.

In addition, it is reported in the Two Sahihs:

أُمِرْتُ أَنْ أُقَاتِلَ النَّاسَ حَتَّى يَقُولُوا لَا إِلهَ إلَّا اللهُ، فَإِذَا قَالُوهَا عَصَمُوا مِنِّي دِمَاءَهُم وَأَمْوَالَهُمْ إلَّا بِحَقِّهَا وَحِسَابُهُمْ عَلَى الله

I have been ordered (by Allah) to fight the people until they proclaim, `None has the right to be worshipped but Allah'. Whoever said it, then he will save his life and property from me, except for cases of the law, and their account will be with Allah.

Allah's statement:

... فَإِنِ انتَهَواْ فَلاَ عُدْوَانَ إِلاَّ عَلَى الظَّالِمِينَ ﴿١٩٣﴾

But if they cease, let there be no transgression except against the wrongdoers.

indicates that, `If they stop their Shirk and fighting the believers, then cease warfare against them. Whoever fights them afterwards will be committing an injustice. Verily aggression can only be started against the unjust.'

This is the meaning of Mujahid's statement that only combatants should be fought.

Or, the meaning of the Ayah indicates that, `If they abandon their injustice, which is Shirk in this case, then do not start aggression against them afterwards.'

The aggression here means retaliating and fighting them, just as Allah said:

فَمَنِ اعْتَدَى عَلَيْكُمْ فَاعْتَدُواْ عَلَيْهِ بِمِثْلِ مَا اعْتَدَى عَلَيْكُمْ

Then whoever transgresses against you, you transgress likewise against him. (2:194)

Similarly, Allah said:

وَجَزَآءُ سَيِّئَةٍ سَيِّئَةٌ مِّثْلُهَا

The recompense for an evil is an evil like thereof. (42:40)

and,

وَإِنْ عَاقَبْتُمْ فَعَاقِبُواْ بِمِثْلِ مَا عُوقِبْتُمْ بِهِ

And if you punish them, then punish them with the like of that with which you were afflicted. (16:126)

Ikrimah and Qatadah stated, "The unjust person is he who refuses to proclaim, `There is no God worthy of worship except Allah'.''

Under Allah's statement: وَقَاتِلُوهُمْ حَتَّى لاَ تَكُونَ فِتْنَةٌ  (And fight them until there is no more Fitnah, Al-Bukhari recorded that Nafi said that;

two men came to Ibn Umar during the conflict of Ibn Az-Zubayr and said to him, "The people have fallen into shortcomings and you are the son of Umar and the Prophet's Companion. Hence, what prevents you from going out?''

He said, "What prevents me is that Allah has for bidden shedding the blood of my (Muslim) brother.''

They said, "Did not Allah say: وَقَاتِلُوهُمْ حَتَّى لاَ تَكُونَ فِتْنَةٌ  (And fight them until there is no more Fitnah (disbelief and worshipping of others along with Allah)!''

He said, "We did fight until there was no more Fitnah and the religion became for Allah Alone. You want to fight until there is Fitnah and the religion becomes for other than Allah!''

Uthman bin Salih added that;

a man came to Ibn Umar and asked him, "O Abu Abdur-Rahman! What made you perform Hajj one year and Umrah another year and abandon Jihad in the cause of Allah, although you know how much He has encouraged performing it!''

He said, "O my nephew! Islam is built on five (pillars):

o believing in Allah and His Messenger,

o the five daily prayers,

o fasting Ramadan,

o paying the Zakah and

o performing Hajj (pilgrimage) to the House.''

They said, "O Abu Abdur-Rahman! Did you not hear what Allah said in His Book:

وَإِن طَآئِفَتَانِ مِنَ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ اقْتَتَلُواْ فَأَصْلِحُواْ بَيْنَهُمَا فَإِن بَغَتْ إِحْدَاهُمَا عَلَى الأُخْرَى فَقَـتِلُواْ الَّتِى تَبْغِى حَتَّى تَفِىءَ إِلَى أَمْرِ اللَّهِ

And if two parties (or groups) among the believers fall to fighting, then make peace between them both. But if one of them outrages against the other, then fight you (all) against the one that which outrages till it complies with the command of Allah. (49:9)

and, وَقَاتِلُوهُمْ حَتَّى لاَ تَكُونَ فِتْنَةٌ  (And fight them until there is no more Fitnah (disbelief).

He said, "That we did during the time of Allah's Messenger when Islam was still weak and (the Muslim) man used to face trials in his religion, such as killing or torture. When Islam became stronger (and apparent), there was no more Fitnah.''

He asked, "What do you say about Ali and Uthman?''

He said, "As for Uthman, Allah has forgiven him. However, you hated the fact that Allah had forgiven him!

As for Ali, he is the cousin of Allah's Messenger and his son-in-law.''

He then pointed with his hand, saying, "This is where his house is located (meaning, `so close to the Prophet's house just as Ali was so close to the Prophet himself'.'' 

194

الشَّهْرُ الْحَرَامُ بِالشَّهْرِ الْحَرَامِ وَالْحُرُمَـتُ قِصَاصٌ

The sacred month is for the sacred month, and for the prohibited things, there is the Law of equality (Qisas).

فَمَنِ اعْتَدَى عَلَيْكُمْ فَاعْتَدُواْ عَلَيْهِ بِمِثْلِ مَا اعْتَدَى عَلَيْكُمْ

Then whoever transgresses against you, you transgress likewise against him.

وَاتَّقُواْ اللَّهَ وَاعْلَمُواْ أَنَّ اللَّهَ مَعَ الْمُتَّقِينَ

And fear Allah, and know that Allah is with Al-Muttaqin.

Fighting during the Sacred Months is prohibited, except in Self-Defense

Allah says,

الشَّهْرُ الْحَرَامُ بِالشَّهْرِ الْحَرَامِ وَالْحُرُمَاتُ قِصَاصٌ ...  

The sacred month is for the sacred month, and for the prohibited things, there is the Law of equality (Qisas).

Ibn Abbas, Ad-Dahhak, As-Suddi, Qatadah, Miqsam, Ar-Rabi bin Anas and Ata said,

"Allah's Messenger went for Umrah on the sixth year of Hijrah. Then, the idolators prevented him from entering the Sacred House (the Ka`bah in Makkah) along with the Muslims who came with him. This incident occurred during the sacred month of Dhul-Qadah. The idolators agreed to allow them to enter the House the next year. Hence, the Prophet entered the House the following year, along with the Muslims who accompanied him, and Allah permitted him to avenge the idolators' treatment of him, when He said: الشَّهْرُ الْحَرَامُ بِالشَّهْرِ الْحَرَامِ وَالْحُرُمَاتُ قِصَاصٌ  (The sacred month is for the sacred month, and for the prohibited things, there is the Law of equality (Qisas).

Imam Ahmad recorded that Jabir bin Abdullah said, "Allah's Messenger would not engage in warfare during the Sacred Month unless he was first attacked, then he would march forth. He would otherwise remain idle until the end of the Sacred Months.''

This Hadith has an authentic chain of narrators.

Hence, when the Prophet was told that Uthman was killed (in Makkah) when he was camped at the area of Al-Hudaybiyyah, after he had sent Uthman as his emissary to the polytheists, he accepted the pledge from his Companions under the tree to fight the polytheists. They were one thousand and four hundred then. When the Prophet was informed that Uthman was not killed, he abandoned the fight and reverted to peace.

When the Prophet finished fighting with (the tribes of) Hawazin during the battle of Hunayn and Hawazin took refuge in (the city of) At-Ta'if, he laid siege to that city. Then, the (sacred) month of Dhul-Qadah started, while At-Ta'if was still under siege. The siege went on for the rest of the forty days (rather, from the day the battle of Hunayn started until the Prophet went back to Al-Madinah from Al-Jiranah, were forty days), as reported in the Two Sahihs and narrated by Anas.

When the Companions suffered mounting casualties (during the siege), the Prophet ended the siege before conquering At-Ta'if. He then went back to Makkah, performed Umrah from Al-Jiranah, where he divided the war booty of Hunayn. This Umrah occurred during Dhul-Qadah of the eighth year of Al-Hijrah.

Allah's statement:

... فَمَنِ اعْتَدَى عَلَيْكُمْ فَاعْتَدُواْ عَلَيْهِ بِمِثْلِ مَا اعْتَدَى عَلَيْكُمْ ...

...whoever transgresses against you, you transgress likewise against him.

ordains justice even with the polytheists.

Allah also said in another Ayah:

وَإِنْ عَاقَبْتُمْ فَعَاقِبُواْ بِمِثْلِ مَا عُوقِبْتُمْ بِهِ

And if you punish, then punish them with the like of that with which you were afflicted. (16:126)

Allah's statement:

... وَاتَّقُواْ اللّهَ وَاعْلَمُواْ أَنَّ اللّهَ مَعَ الْمُتَّقِينَ ﴿١٩٤﴾

And fear Allah, and know that Allah is with Al-Muttaqin (the pious).

commands that Allah be obeyed and feared out of Taqwa.

The Ayah informs us that Allah is with those who have Taqwa by His aid and support in this life and the Hereafter.

195

وَأَنفِقُواْ فِى سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ وَلاَ تُلْقُواْ بِأَيْدِيكُمْ إِلَى التَّهْلُكَةِ وَأَحْسِنُواْ إِنَّ اللَّهَ يُحِبُّ الْمُحْسِنِينَ

And spend in the cause of Allah and do not throw yourselves into destruction, and do good. Truly, Allah loves Al-Muhsinin (those who do good).

The Command to spend in the Cause of Allah

Allah says;

وَأَنفِقُواْ فِي سَبِيلِ اللّهِ وَلاَ تُلْقُواْ بِأَيْدِيكُمْ إِلَى التَّهْلُكَةِ ...  

And spend in the cause of Allah and do not throw yourselves into destruction,

Al-Bukhari recorded that Hudhayfah said: "It was revealed about spending.''

Ibn Abu Hatim reported him saying similarly. He then commented, "Similar is reported from Ibn Abbas, Mujahid, Ikrimah, Sa`id bin Jubayr, Ata, Ad-Dahhak, Al-Hasan, Qatadah, As-Suddi and Muqatil bin Hayyan.''

Aslam Abu Imran said, "A man from among the Ansar broke enemy (Byzantine) lines in Constantinople (Istanbul). Abu Ayub Al-Ansari was with us then. So some people said, `He is throwing himself to destruction.'

Abu Ayub said, `We know this Ayah (2:195) better, for it was revealed about us, the Companions of Allah's Messenger who participated in Jihad with him and aided and supported him.

When Islam became strong, we, the Ansar, met and said to each other, `Allah has honored us by being the Companions of His Prophet and in supporting him until Islam became victorious and its following increased.

We had before ignored the needs of our families, estates and children. Warfare has ceased, so let us go back to our families and children and attend to them.' So this Ayah was revealed about us: وَأَنفِقُواْ فِي سَبِيلِ اللّهِ وَلاَ تُلْقُواْ بِأَيْدِيكُمْ إِلَى التَّهْلُكَةِ (And spend in the cause of Allah and do not throw yourselves into destruction),

the destruction refers to staying with our families and estates and abandoning Jihad'.''

This was recorded by Abu Dawud, At-Tirmidhi, An-Nasa'i, Abd bin Humayd in his Tafsir, Ibn Abu Hatim, Ibn Jarir, Ibn Marduwyah, Al-Hafiz Abu Ya`la in his Musnad, Ibn Hibban and Al-Hakim.

At-Tirmidhi said; "Hasan, Sahih, Gharib."

Al-Hakim said, "It meets the criteria of the Two Sheikhs (Al-Bukhari and Muslim) but they did not record it."

Abu Dawud's version mentions that Aslam Abu Imran said,

"We were at (the siege of) Constantinople. Then, Uqbah bin Amr was leading the Egyptian forces, while the Syrian forces were led by Fadalah bin Ubayd. Later on, a huge column of Roman (Byzantine) soldiers departed the city, and we stood in lines against them.

A Muslim man raided the Roman lines until he broke through them and came back to us. The people shouted, `All praise is due to Allah! He is sending himself to certain demise.'

Abu Ayub said, `O people! You explain this Ayah the wrong way. It was revealed about us, the Ansar when Allah gave victory to His religion and its following increased. We said to each other, `It would be better for us now if we return to our estates and attend to them.' Then Allah revealed this Ayah (2:195)'.''

Abu Bakr bin Aiyash reported that Abu Ishaq As-Subai`y related that;

a man said to Al-Bara bin Azib, "If I raided the enemy lines alone and they kill me, would I be throwing myself to certain demise?''

He said, "No. Allah said to His Messenger: فَقَاتِلْ فِي سَبِيلِ اللّهِ لاَ تُكَلَّفُ إِلاَّ نَفْسَكَ (Then fight (O Muhammad) in the cause of Allah, you are not tasked (held responsible) except for yourself. (4:84)

That Ayah (2:195) is about (refraining from) spending.''

Ibn Marduwyah reported this Hadith, as well as Al-Hakim in his Mustadrak who said; "It meets the criteria of the Two Sheikhs (Al-Bukhari and Muslim) but they did not record it."

Ath-Thawri and Qays bin Ar-Rabi related it from Al-Bara. but added:

 لاَ تُكَلَّفُ إِلاَّ نَفْسَكَ  (You are not tasked (held responsible) except for yourself. (4:84)

"Destruction refers to the man who sins and refrains from repenting, thus throwing himself to destruction.''

Ibn Abbas said: وَأَنفِقُواْ فِي سَبِيلِ اللّهِ وَلاَ تُلْقُواْ بِأَيْدِيكُمْ إِلَى التَّهْلُكَةِ  (And spend in the cause of Allah and do not throw yourselves into destruction),

"This is not about fighting. But about refraining from spending for the sake of Allah, in which case, one will be throwing his self into destruction."

The Ayah (2:195) includes the order to spend in Allah's cause, in the various areas and ways that involve obedience and drawing closer to Allah. It especially applies to spending in fighting the enemies and on what strengthens the Muslims against the enemy.

Allah states that those who refrain from spending in this regard will face utter and certain demise and destruction, meaning those who acquire this habit.

Allah commands that one should acquire Ihsan (excellence in the religion), as it is the highest part of the acts of obedience.

Allah said:

... وَأَحْسِنُوَاْ إِنَّ اللّهَ يُحِبُّ الْمُحْسِنِينَ ﴿١٩٥﴾

and do good. Truly, Allah loves Al-Muhsinin (those who do good).

196

وَأَتِمُّواْ الْحَجَّ وَالْعُمْرَةَ لِلَّهِ

And complete Hajj and Umrah for Allah.

فَإِنْ أُحْصِرْتُمْ فَمَا اسْتَيْسَرَ مِنَ الْهَدْىِ وَلاَ تَحْلِقُواْ رُءُوسَكُمْ حَتَّى يَبْلُغَ الْهَدْىُ مَحِلَّهُ

But if you are prevented, then sacrifice a Hady that you can afford, and do not shave your heads until the Hady reaches the place of sacrifice.

فَمَن كَانَ مِنكُم مَّرِيضًا أَوْ بِهِ أَذًى مِّن رَّأْسِهِ فَفِدْيَةٌ مِّن صِيَامٍ أَوْ صَدَقَةٍ أَوْ نُسُكٍ

And whosoever of you is ill or has an ailment on his scalp (necessitating shaving), he must pay a Fidyah (ransom) of either fasting or giving Sadaqah or a sacrifice.

فَإِذَآ أَمِنتُمْ فَمَن تَمَتَّعَ بِالْعُمْرَةِ إِلَى الْحَجِّ فَمَا اسْتَيْسَرَ مِنَ الْهَدْىِ فَمَن لَّمْ يَجِدْ فَصِيَامُ ثَلَـثَةِ أَيَّامٍ فِي الْحَجِّ وَسَبْعَةٍ إِذَا رَجَعْتُمْ تِلْكَ عَشَرَةٌ كَامِلَةٌ

Then if you are in safety and whosoever performs the Umrah (in the months of Hajj), before (performing) the Hajj, he must slaughter a Hady such as he can afford, but if he cannot (afford it), he should fast for three days during Hajj and seven days after his return, making ten days in all.

ذَلِكَ لِمَن لَّمْ يَكُنْ أَهْلُهُ حَاضِرِى الْمَسْجِدِ الْحَرَامِ

This is for him whose family is not present at Al-Masjid Al-Haram (i.e., non-resident of Makkah).

وَاتَّقُواْ اللَّهَ وَاعْلَمُواْ أَنَّ اللَّهَ شَدِيدُ الْعِقَابِ

And fear Allah much and know that Allah is severe in punishment.

The Command to complete Hajj and Umrah

Allah says;

وَأَتِمُّواْ الْحَجَّ وَالْعُمْرَةَ لِلّهِ ...  

And complete Hajj and Umrah for Allah.

After Allah mentioned the rulings for fasting and Jihad, he explained the rituals by commanding the Muslims to complete Hajj and Umrah,

meaning, to finish the rituals of Hajj and Umrah after one starts them.

This is why Allah said afterwards:

... فَإِنْ أُحْصِرْتُمْ ...

But if you are prevented,

meaning, if your way to the House is obstructed, and you are prevented from finishing it.

This is why the scholars agree that starting the acts of Hajj and Umrah requires one to finish them.

As for Makhul, he said, "Complete, means to start them from the Miqat (areas the Prophet designated to assume Ihram from).''

Abdur-Razzaq said that Az-Zuhri said: "We were told that Umar commented on: وَأَتِمُّواْ الْحَجَّ وَالْعُمْرَةَ لِلّهِ  (And complete Hajj and Umrah for Allah),

"Complete Hajj and Umrah means performing each of them separately, and to perform Umrah outside of the months of Hajj, for Allah the Exalted says: الْحَجُّ أَشْهُرٌ مَّعْلُومَاتٌ  (The Hajj (pilgrimage) is (in) the well-known (lunar year) months),'' (2:197).

As-Suddi said, وَأَتِمُّواْ الْحَجَّ وَالْعُمْرَةَ لِلّهِ (And complete Hajj and Umrah for Allah) means, "Maintain the performance of Hajj and Umrah.''

Ibn Abbas was reported to have said, "Hajj is Arafat, while Umrah is Tawaf.''

Al-Amash related that Ibrahim said that Alqamah commented on Allah's statement: وَأَتِمُّواْ الْحَجَّ وَالْعُمْرَةَ لِلّهِ (And complete Hajj and Umrah for Allah),

"Abdullah (Ibn Mas`ud) recited it this way: `Complete Hajj and Umrah to the House, so that one does not exceed the area of the House during the Umrah'.''

Ibrahim then said, "I mentioned this statement to Sa`id bin Jubayr and he said; `Ibn Abbas also said that.'''

Sufyan reported that Ibrahim said that Alqamah said regarding the Ayah, "Perform the Hajj and Umrah to the House.''

Ath-Thawri reported that Ibrahim read (the Ayah), "Perform the Hajj and Umrah to the House.''

If One is prevented while in Route, He slaughters the Sacrifice, shaves his Head and ends Ihram

Allah's statement:

... فَإِنْ أُحْصِرْتُمْ فَمَا اسْتَيْسَرَ مِنَ الْهَدْيِ ...

But if you are prevented, sacrifice a Hady (animals for sacrifice) such as you can afford,

was revealed in the sixth year of Hijrah, the year of the treaty of Al-Hudaybiyyah when the polytheists prevented Allah's Messenger from reaching the House.

Allah revealed Surah Al-Fath then, and allowed the Muslims to slaughter any Hady (animals for sacrifice) they had. They had seventy camels with them for that purpose.

They were also permitted to shave their heads and end their Ihram.

When the Prophet commanded them to shave their heads and end the state of Ihram, they did not obey him, as they were awaiting that order to be abrogated. When they saw that the Prophet went out after shaving his head, they imitated him. Some of them did not shave, but only shortened their hair. This is why the Prophet said:

رَحِمَ اللهُ الْمُحَلِّقِين

May Allah award His mercy to those who shaved.

They said, "What about those who shortened the hair?''

He said in the third time, "And to those who shortened.''

Every seven among them shared one camel for their sacrifice. They were one thousand and four hundred Companions and were camping in the area of Al-Hudaybiyyah, outside the Sacred Area. It was also reported that they were within the boundaries of the Sacred Area. Allah knows best.

Being prevented from the House (Hasr) includes more than just being sick, fearing an enemy or getting lost on the way to Makkah.

Imam Ahmad reported that Al-Hajjaj bin Amr Al-Ansari said that he heard Allah's Messenger saying:

مَنْ كُسِرَ أَوْ عَرِجَ فَقَدْ حَلَّ وَعَلَيْهِ حَجَّةٌ أُخْرَى

Whoever suffered a broken bone or a limb, will have ended his Ihram and has to perform Hajj again.

He said, "I mentioned that to Ibn Abbas and Abu Hurayrah and they both said, `He (Al-Hajjaj) has said the truth'.''

This Hadith is also reported in the Four Collections.

In the version of Abu Dawud and Ibn Majah, the Prophet said, "Whoever limped, had a broken bone or became ill...''

Ibn Abu Hatim also recorded it and said, "It was reported that Ibn Mas`ud, Ibn Az-Zubayr, Alqamah, Sa`id bin Musayyib, Urwah bin Az-Zubayr, Mujahid, An-Nakhai, Ata and Muqatil bin Hayyan said that;

being prevented (Hasr) entails an enemy, an illness or a fracture.''

Ath-Thawri also said, "Being prevented entails everything that harms the person.''

It is reported in the Two Sahihs that Aishah said that; Allah's Messenger went to Dubaah bint Az-Zubayr bin Abdul-Muttalib who said, "O Messenger of Allah! I intend to perform Hajj but I am ill.''

He said, "Perform Hajj and make the condition: `My place is where You prevent (or halt) me.''

Muslim recorded similarly from Ibn Abbas.

So saying such a condition for Hajj is allowed is based on this Hadith.

Allah's statement: فَمَا اسْتَيْسَرَ مِنَ الْهَدْيِ  (...sacrifice a Hady such as you can afford), includes a sheep also, as Imam Malik reported that Ali bin Abu Talib used to say.

Ibn Abbas said,

"The Hady includes eight types of animals:

ˇ camels,

ˇ cows,

ˇ goats and

ˇ sheep.''

Abdur-Razzaq reported that Ibn Abbas said about what Allah said: فَمَا اسْتَيْسَرَ مِنَ الْهَدْيِ  (...sacrifice a Hady such as you can afford), "As much as one could afford.''

Al-Awfi said that Ibn Abbas said, "If one can afford it, then camels, otherwise cows, or sheep.''

Hisham bin Urwah quoted his father: فَمَا اسْتَيْسَرَ مِنَ الْهَدْيِ  (...sacrifice a Hady (animal, i.e., a sheep, a cow, or a camel), such as you can afford, `Depending on the price.'

The proof that sacrificing only a sheep is allowed in the case of being prevented from continuing the rites, is that Allah has required sacrificing whatever is available as a Hady, and the Hady is any type of cattle; be it camels, cows or sheep. This is the opinion of Ibn Abbas the cousin of Allah's Messenger and the scholar of Tafsir.

It is reported in the Two Sahihs that Aishah, the Mother of the believers, said, "The Prophet once offered some sheep as Hady.''

Allah's statement:

... وَلاَ تَحْلِقُواْ رُؤُوسَكُمْ حَتَّى يَبْلُغَ الْهَدْيُ مَحِلَّهُ ...

...and do not shave your heads until the Hady reaches the place of sacrifice,

is a continuation of His statement: وَأَتِمُّواْ الْحَجَّ وَالْعُمْرَةَ لِلّهِ (And complete, the Hajj and Umrah for Allah.) and is not dependent upon: فَإِنْ أُحْصِرْتُمْ فَمَا اسْتَيْسَرَ مِنَ الْهَدْيِ  (But if you are prevented, then sacrifice a Hady) as Ibn Jarir has erroneously claimed.

When the Prophet and his Companions were prevented from entering the Sacred House during the Al-Hudaybiyyah year by the polytheists from Quraysh, they shaved their heads and sacrificed their Hady outside the Haram (Sacred) area.

In normal circumstances, and when one can safely reach the House, he is not allowed to shave his head until: حَتَّى يَبْلُغَ الْهَدْيُ مَحِلَّهُ  (.. .and do not shave your heads until the Hady reaches the place of sacrifice), and then he ends the rituals of Hajj or Umrah, or both if he had assumed Ihram for both.

It is recorded in the Two Sahihs that Hafsah said, "O Allah's Messenger! What is wrong with the people, they have finished their Ihram for Umrah but you have not?'' The Prophet said,

إنِّي لَبَّدْتُ رَأْسِي وَقَلَّدْتُ هَدْيِي، فَلَا أَحِلُّ حَتَّى أَنْحَر

I matted my hair and I have garlanded my Hady (animals for sacrifice), so I will not finish my Ihram till I offer the sacrifice.

Whoever shaved his Head during Ihram, will have to pay the Fidyah

Allah said:

... فَمَن كَانَ مِنكُم مَّرِيضاً أَوْ بِهِ أَذًى مِّن رَّأْسِهِ فَفِدْيَةٌ مِّن صِيَامٍ أَوْ صَدَقَةٍ أَوْ نُسُكٍ ...

And whosoever of you is ill or has an ailment on his scalp (necessitating shaving), he must pay a Fidyah.

Al-Bukhari reported that Abdur-Rahman bin Asbahani said that he heard Abdullah bin Ma`qil saying that;

he sat with Ka`b bin Ujrah in the mosque of Kufah (in Iraq). He then asked him about the Fidyah of the fasting.

Ka`b said, "This was revealed concerning my case especially, but it is also for you in general.

I was carried to Allah's Messenger and the lice were falling in great numbers on my face. The Prophet said:

مَا كُنْتُ أُرَى أَنَّ الْجَهْدَ بلَغَ بكَ هذَا، أمَا تَجِدُ شَاة

I never thought that your ailment (or struggle) had reached to such an extent as I see. Can you afford a sheep (for sacrifice)?'

I replied in the negative. He then said:

صُمْ ثَلَاثَةَ أَيَّامٍ أَوْ أَطْعِمْ سِتَّةَ مَسَاكِينَ، لِكُلِّ مِسْكِينٍ نِصْفُ صَاعٍ مِنْ طَعَامٍ، وَاحْلِقْ رَأْسَك

Fast for three days or feed six poor persons, each with half a Sa` of food (1 Sa` = 3 kilograms approx) and shave your head.

So this is a general judgment derived from a specific case.

Imam Ahmad recorded that Ka`b bin Ujrah said, "Allah's Messenger came by while I was igniting the fire under a pot and while the lice were falling down my head or my eyelids. He said:

يُؤْذِيكَ هَوَامُّ رَأْسِك

Do these lice in your head bother you?

I said, `Yes.'

He said:

فَاحْلِقْهُ، وَصُمْ ثَلَاثَةَ أَيَّامٍ، أَوْ أَطْعِمْ سِتَّةَ مَسَاكِينَ، أَوِ انْسُكْ نَسِيكَة

Shave it, then fast three days, or feed six poor people, or sacrifice an animal.

Ayub (one of the narrators of the Hadith) commented, "I do not know which alternative was stated first.''

The wording of the Qur'an begins with the easiest then the more difficult options: "Pay a Fidyah of fasting (three days), feeding (six poor persons) or sacrificing (an animal).''

Meanwhile, the Prophet advised Ka`b with the more rewarding option first, that is, sacrificing a sheep, then feeding six poor persons, then fasting three days.

Each Text is suitable in its place and context, all the thanks and praises are due to Allah.

 Tamattu During Hajj

Allah said:

... فَإِذَا أَمِنتُمْ فَمَن تَمَتَّعَ بِالْعُمْرَةِ إِلَى الْحَجِّ فَمَا اسْتَيْسَرَ مِنَ الْهَدْيِ ...

Then if you are in safety and whosoever performs the Umrah (in the months of Hajj), before (performing) the Hajj, he must slaughter a Hady such as he can afford,

That is, when you are able to complete the rites, so whoever among you connects his Umrah with Hajj having the same Ihram for both, or,

first assuming Ihram for Umrah, and then assuming Ihram for Hajj when finished the Umrah, this is the more specific type of Tamattu which is well-known among the discussion of the scholars whereas in general there are two types of Tamattu, as the authentic Hadiths prove, since among the narrators are those who said, "Allah's Messenger performed Tamattu, and others who said, "Qarin" but there is no difference between them over the Hady.

So Allah said, فَإِذَا أَمِنتُمْ فَمَن تَمَتَّعَ بِالْعُمْرَةِ إِلَى الْحَجِّ فَمَا اسْتَيْسَرَ مِنَ الْهَدْيِ  (Then if you are in safety and whosoever performs the Umrah (in the months of Hajj), before (performing) the Hajj (i.e., Hajj At-Tamattu and Al-Qiran, he must slaughter a Hady such as he can afford),

means let him sacrifice whatever Hady is available to him, the least of which is a sheep. One is also allowed to sacrifice a cow because the Prophet slaughtered cows on behalf of his wives.

Al-Awzai reported that Abu Hurayrah narrated that Allah's Messenger slaughtered cows on behalf of his wives when they were performing Tamattu.

This was reported by Abu Bakr bin Marduwyah.

This last Hadith proves that Tamattu is legislated.

It is reported in the Two Sahihs that Imran bin Husayn said,

"We performed Hajj At-Tamattu in the lifetime of Allah's Messenger and then the Qur'an was revealed (regarding Hajj At-Tamattu). Nothing was revealed to forbid it, nor did he (the Prophet) forbid it until he died. And somebody said what he wished (regarding Hajj At-Tamattu) according to his own opinion.''

Al-Bukhari said that Imran was talking about Umar.

It is reported in an authentic narration that;

Umar used to discourage the people from performing Tamattu.

He used to say, "If we refer to Allah's Book, we should complete it,''

meaning: فَمَن تَمَتَّعَ بِالْعُمْرَةِ إِلَى الْحَجِّ فَمَا اسْتَيْسَرَ مِنَ الْهَدْيِ (...whosoever performs the Umrah (in the months of Hajj), before (performing) the Hajj, he must slaughter a Hady such as he can afford.

However Umar did not say that Tamattu is unlawful. He only prevented them so that the people would increase their trips to the House for Hajj (during the months of Hajj) and Umrah (throughout the year), as he himself has stated.

Whoever performs Tamattu` should fast Ten Days if He does not have a Hady

Allah said:

... فَمَن لَّمْ يَجِدْ فَصِيَامُ ثَلاثَةِ أَيَّامٍ فِي الْحَجِّ وَسَبْعَةٍ إِذَا رَجَعْتُمْ تِلْكَ عَشَرَةٌ كَامِلَةٌ ...

...but if he cannot (afford it), he should fast three days during the Hajj and seven days after his return (to his home), making ten days in all.

This Ayah means: "Those who do not find a Hady, let them fast three days during the Hajj season.''

Al-Awfi said that Ibn Abbas said, "If one does not have a Hady, he should fast three days during Hajj, before Arafah day. If the day of Arafah was the third day, then his fast is complete. He should also fast seven days when he gets back home.''

Abu Ishaq reported from Wabarah from Ibn Umar who said, "One fasts one day before the day of Tarwiyah, the day of Tarwiyah (eighth day of Dhul-Hijjah) and then Arafah day (the ninth day of the month of Dhul-Hijjah).''

The same statement was reported by Jafar bin Muhammad from his father from Ali.

If one did not fast these three days or at least some of them before `Id day (the tenth day of Dhul-Hijjah), he is allowed to fast during the Tashriq days (11-12-13th day of Dhul-Hijjah). `

Al-Bukhari has reported that Aishah and Ibn Umar said, "Fasting the days of Tashriq was only allowed for those who did not find the Hady,''

Sufyan related that Jafar bin Muhammad narrated that his father said that Ali said, "Whoever did not fast the three days during the Hajj, should fast them during the days of Tashriq.''

This is also the position taken by Ubayd bin Umayr Al-Laythi, Ikrimah, Al-Hasan Al-Basri and Urwah bin Az-Zubayr, referring to the general meaning of Allah's statement: فَصِيَامُ ثَلاثَةِ أَيَّامٍ فِي الْحَجِّ  (...fast three days during the Hajj...).

As for what Muslim reported that Qutaybah Al-Hudhali said that Allah's Messenger said:

أَيَّامُ التَّشْرِيقِ أَيَّامُ أَكْلٍ وَشُرْبٍ، وَذِكْرِ اللهِ عَزَّ وَجَل

The days of Tashriq are days of eating and drinking and remembering Allah the Exalted.

This narration is general in meaning while what Aishah and Ibn Umar narrated is specific.

Allah said:

... وَسَبْعَةٍ إِذَا رَجَعْتُمْ ...

...and seven days after his return.

There are two opinions regarding the meaning of this Ayah.

ˇ First, it means `when you return to the camping areas'.

ˇ The second, upon going back home.

Abdur-Razzaq reported that Salim narrated that he heard Ibn Umar saying:

فَمَن لَّمْ يَجِدْ فَصِيَامُ ثَلاثَةِ أَيَّامٍ فِي الْحَجِّ وَسَبْعَةٍ إِذَا رَجَعْتُمْ  "(...but if he cannot (afford it), he should fast three days during the Hajj and seven days after his return), means when he goes back to his family.''

The same opinion was reported from Sa`id bin Jubayr, Abu Al-Aliyah, Mujahid, Ata, Ikrimah, Al-Hasan, Qatadah, Imam Az-Zuhri and Ar-Rabi bin Anas.

Al-Bukhari reported that Salim bin Abdullah narrated that Ibn Umar said,

"During the Farewell Hajj of Allah's Messenger, he performed Tamattu with Umrah and Hajj. He drove a Hady along with him from Dhul-Hulayfah. Allah's Messenger started by assuming Ihram for Umrah, and then for Hajj. And the people, too, performed the Umrah and Hajj along with the Prophet.

Some of them brought the Hady and drove it along with them, while the others did not. So, when the Prophet arrived at Makkah, he said to the people:

مَنْ كَانَ مِنْكُم أَهْدَى فَإِنَّهُ لَا يَحِلُّ مِنْ شَيْءٍ حَرُمَ مِنْهُ حَتَّى يَقْضِيَ حَجَّهُ،

Whoever among you has driven the Hady, should not finish his Ihram till he completes his Hajj.

وَمَنْ لَمْ يَكُنْ مِنْكُمْ أَهْدَى فَلْيَطُفْ بالْبَيْتِ وبالصَّفَا وَالْمَرْوَةِ وَلْيُقَصِّرْ وَلْيَحْلِلْ، ثُمَّ لْيُهِلَّ بِالْحَجِّ،

And whoever among you has not (driven) the Hady with him, he should perform Tawaf of the Ka`bah and between As-Safa and Al-Marwah. Then, he should shave or cut his hair short and finish his Ihram, and should later assume Ihram for Hajj; (but he must offer a Hady (sacrifice)).

فَمَنْ لَمْ يجَدْ هَدْيًا فَلْيَصُمْ ثَلَاثَةَ أَيَّامٍ فِي الْحَجِّ، وَسَبْعةً إِذَا رَجَعَ إِلى أَهْلِه

And if anyone cannot afford a Hady, he should fast for three days during the Hajj and seven days when he returns home.

He then mentioned the rest of the Hadith, which is reported in the Two Sahihs.

Allah said:

... تِلْكَ عَشَرَةٌ كَامِلَةٌ ...

...making ten days in all.

to emphasize the ruling we mentioned above.

This method is common in the Arabic language, for they would say, `I have seen with my eyes, heard with my ears and written with my hand,' to emphasize such facts.

Similarly, Allah said:

وَلاَ طَائِرٍ يَطِيرُ بِجَنَاحَيْهِ

...nor a bird that flies with its two wings. (6:38)

and,

وَلاَ تَخُطُّهُ بِيَمِينِكَ

...nor did you write any book (whatsoever) with your right hand. (29:48)

and,

وَوَعَدْنَا مُوسَى ثَلَـثِينَ لَيْلَةً وَأَتْمَمْنَاهَا بِعَشْرٍ فَتَمَّ مِيقَـتُ رَبِّهِ أَرْبَعِينَ لَيْلَةً

And We appointed for Musa thirty nights and added (to the period) ten (more), and he completed the term, appointed by his Lord, of forty nights. (7:142)

It was also said that; the meaning of "ten days in all'' emphasizes the order to fast for ten days, not less than that.

The Residents of Makkah do not perform Tamattu"

Allah said:

... ذَلِكَ لِمَن لَّمْ يَكُنْ أَهْلُهُ حَاضِرِي الْمَسْجِدِ الْحَرَامِ ...

This is for him whose family is not present at Al-Masjid Al-Haram (i.e., non-resident of Makkah).

This Ayah concerns the residents of the area of the Haram, for they do not perform Tamattu.

Abdur-Razzaq reported that Tawus said, "Tamattu is for the people, those whose families are not residing in the Haram area (Makkah), not for the residents of Makkah. Hence Allah's Statement:  ذَلِكَ لِمَن لَّمْ يَكُنْ أَهْلُهُ حَاضِرِي الْمَسْجِدِ الْحَرَامِ  (This is for him whose family is not present at Al-Masjid Al-Haram (i.e., non-resident of Makkah).

Abdur-Razzaq then said, "I was also told that Ibn Abbas said similar to Tawus.''

Allah said:

... وَاتَّقُواْ اللّهَ ...

...and fear Allah,

meaning, in what He has commanded you and what He prohibited for you.

He then said:

... وَاعْلَمُواْ أَنَّ اللّهَ شَدِيدُ الْعِقَابِ ﴿١٩٦﴾

...and know that Allah is severe in punishment.

for those who defy His command and commit what He has prohibited.

197

الْحَجُّ أَشْهُرٌ مَّعْلُومَـتٌ فَمَن فَرَضَ فِيهِنَّ الْحَجَّ فَلاَ رَفَثَ وَلاَ فُسُوقَ وَلاَ جِدَالَ فِي الْحَجِّ وَمَا تَفْعَلُواْ مِنْ خَيْرٍ يَعْلَمْهُ اللَّهُ

The Hajj (pilgrimage) is (in) the well-known months. So whosoever intends to perform Hajj therein (by assuming Ihram), then he should not have sexual relations (with his wife), nor commit sin, nor dispute unjustly during the Hajj. And whatever good you do, Allah knows it.

وَتَزَوَّدُواْ فَإِنَّ خَيْرَ الزَّادِ التَّقْوَى وَاتَّقُونِ يأُوْلِي الأَلْبَـبِ

And take provisions for the journey, but the best provision is At-Taqwa (piety, righteousness). So fear Me, O men of understanding!

When does Ihram for Hajj start

Allah said:

الْحَجُّ أَشْهُرٌ مَّعْلُومَاتٌ ...  

The Hajj is (in) the well-known months.

This Ayah indicates that Ihram for Hajj only occurs during the months of Hajj. This was reported from Ibn Abbas, Jabir, Ata, Tawus and Mujahid.

The proof for this is Allah's statement that Hajj occurs during known, specific months, which indicates that Hajj is not allowed before that, just as the prayer has a fixed time (before which one's prayer is not accepted).

Ash-Shafii recorded that Ibn Abbas said, "No person should assume Ihram for Hajj before the months of the Hajj, for Allah said: الْحَجُّ أَشْهُرٌ مَّعْلُومَاتٌ  (The Hajj is (in) the well-known months).

Ibn Khuzaymah reported that Ibn Abbas said, "No Ihram for Hajj should be assumed, except during the months of Hajj, for among the Sunnah of Hajj is that one assume Ihram for it during the Hajj months.''

This is an authentic narration and the Companion's statement that such and such is among the Sunnah is considered as a Hadith of the Prophet, according to the majority of the scholars. This is especially the case when it is Ibn Abbas who issued this statement, as he is the Tarjuman (translator, interpreter, explainer) of the Qur'an.

There is a Hadith about this subject too.

Ibn Marduwyah related that Jabir narrated that the Prophet said:

لَا يَنْبَغِي لِأَحَدٍ أَنْ يُحْرِمَ بِالْحَجِّ إِلَّا فِي أَشْهُرِ الْحَج

No one should assume Ihram for Hajj, but during the months of Hajj.

The chain of narrators for this Hadith is reasonable.

Ash-Shafii and Al-Bayhaqi recorded this Hadith from Ibn Jurayj who related that Abu Az-Zubayr said that he heard Jabir bin Abdullah being asked,

"Does one assume Ihram for Hajj before the months of the Hajj?''

He said, "No.''

This narration is more reliable than the narration that we mentioned from the Prophet.

In short, this statement is the opinion of the Companion, supported by Ibn Abbas statement that it is a part of the Sunnah not to assume Ihram for Hajj before the months of the Hajj.

Allah knows best.

The Months of Hajj

Allah said:

... أَشْهُرٌ مَّعْلُومَاتٌ ...

...the well-known months.

Al-Bukhari said that Ibn Umar said that; these are Shawwal, Dhul-Qadah and the first ten days of Dhul-Hijjah.

This narration for which Al-Bukhari did not mention the chain of narrators, was collected by a continuous chain of narrators that Ibn Jarir rendered authentic, leading to Ibn Umar, who said: الْحَجُّ أَشْهُرٌ مَّعْلُومَاتٌ  (The Hajj (pilgrimage) is (in) the well-known (lunar year) months),

"which are Shawwal, Dhul-Qadah and the (first) ten days of Dhul-Hijjah.''

Its chain is Sahih.

Al-Hakim also recorded it in his Mustadrak, and he said, "It meets the criteria of the Two Sheikhs."

This statement is also reported from Umar, Ali, Ibn Mas`ud, Abdullah bin Az-Zubayr, Ibn Abbas, Ata, Tawus, Mujahid, Ibrahim An-Nakhai, Imam Ash-Sha`bi, Al-Hasan, Ibn Sirin, Makhul, Qatadah, Ad-Dahhak bin Muzahim, Ar-Rabi bin Anas and Muqatil bin Hayyan.

This opinion was preferred by Ibn Jarir who said,

"It is a common practice to call two months and a part of the third month as `months'. This is similar to the Arab's saying, `I visited such and such person this year or this day.' He only visited him during a part of the year and a part of the day. Allah said: فَمَن تَعَجَّلَ فِي يَوْمَيْنِ فَلاَ إِثْمَ عَلَيْهِ  (But whosoever hastens to leave in two days, there is no sin on him), (2:203).In this case, one will only be hastening for one and a half days.''

Allah then said:

... فَمَن فَرَضَ فِيهِنَّ الْحَجَّ ...

So whosoever intends (Farada) to perform Hajj therein (by assuming Ihram),

meaning that one's assuming the Ihram requires a Hajj, for the person is required to complete the rituals of Hajj after assuming Ihram.

Ibn Jarir said that Al-Awfi said, "The scholars agree that (Farada) `intends' mentioned in the Ayah means it is a requirement and an obligation.''

Ali bin Abu Talhah said that Ibn Abbas said:"فَمَن فَرَضَ فِيهِنَّ الْحَجَّ  (So whosoever intends to perform Hajj therein (by assuming Ihram)), refers to those who assume Ihram for Hajj and Umrah.''

Ata said, "'Intends', means, assumes the Ihram.''

Similar statements were attributed to Ibrahim, Ad-Dahhak and others.

Prohibition of Rafath (Sexual Intercourse) during Hajj

Allah said:

... فَلاَ رَفَثَ ...

He should not have Rafath,

This Ayah means that those who assume the Ihram for Hajj or Umrah are required to avoid the Rafath, meaning, sexual intercourse.

Allah's statement here is similar to His statement:

أُحِلَّ لَكُمْ لَيْلَةَ الصِّيَامِ الرَّفَثُ إِلَى نِسَآئِكُمْ

It is made lawful for you to have Rafath (sexual relations) with your wives on the night of the fast. (2:187)

Whatever might lead to sexual intercourse, such as embracing, kissing and talking to women about similar subjects, is not allowed.

Ibn Jarir reported that Nafi narrated that Abdullah bin Umar said, "Rafath means sexual intercourse or mentioning this subject with the tongue, by either men or women.''

Ata bin Abu Rabah said that, Rafath means sexual intercourse and foul speech.

This is also the opinion of Amr bin Dinar.

Ata also said that they used to even prevent talking (or hinting) about this subject.

Tawus said that Rafath includes one's saying, "When I end the Ihram I will have sex with you.''

This is also the same explanation offered by Abu Al-Aliyah regarding Rafath.

Ali bin Abu Talhah said that Ibn Abbas said, "Rafath means having sex with the wife, kissing, fondling and saying foul words to her, and similar acts.''

Ibn Abbas and Ibn Umar said that; Rafath means to have sex with women.

This is also the opinion of Sa`id bin Jubayr, Ikrimah, Mujahid, Ibrahim An-Nakhai, Abu Al-Aliyah who narrated it from Ata and Makhul, Ata Al-Khurasani, Ata' bin Yasar, Atiyah, Ibrahim, Ar-Rabi, Az-Zuhri, As-Suddi, Malik bin Anas, Muqatil bin Hayyan, Abdul-Karim bin Malik, Al-Hasan, Qatadah and Ad-Dahhak, and others.

The Prohibition of Fusuq during Hajj

Allah said:

... وَلاَ فُسُوقَ ...

...nor commit sin,

Miqsam and several other scholars related that Ibn Abbas said, "It is disobedience."

This is also the opinion of Ata, Mujahid, Tawus, Ikrimah, Sa`id bin Jubayr, Muhammad bin Ka`b, Al-Hasan, Qatadah, Ibrahim An-Nakhai, Az-Zuhri, Ar-Rabi bin Anas, Ata bin Yasar, Ata Al-Khurasani and Muqatil bin Hayyan.

Ibn Wahb reported that Nafi` narrated that Abdullah bin Umar said, "Fusuq (or sin mentioned in the Ayah (2:197)) refers to committing what Allah has forbidden in the Sacred Area.''

Several others said that; Fusuq means cursing others, they based this on the authentic Hadith:

سِبَابُ الْمُسْلِمِ فُسُوقٌ وَقِتَالُهُ كُفْر

Cursing the Muslim is Fusuq, while fighting him is Kufr.

Abdur-Rahman bin Zayd bin Aslam said; Fusuq here means slaughtering animals for the idols, as Allah said:

أَوْ فِسْقًا أُهِلَّ لِغَيْرِ اللَّهِ بِهِ

...or impious (Fisq) meat (of an animal) which is slaughtered as a sacrifice for others than Allah. (6:145)

Ad-Dahhak said that; Fusuq is insulting one another with bad nicknames.

Those who said that the Fusuq means all types of disobedience are correct. Allah has also prohibited committing injustice during the months of Hajj in specific, although injustice is prohibited throughout the year. This is why Allah said:

مِنْهَآ أَرْبَعَةٌ حُرُمٌ ذلِكَ الدِّينُ الْقَيِّمُ فَلاَ تَظْلِمُواْ فِيهِنَّ أَنفُسَكُمْ

...of them four are sacred. That is the right religion, so wrong not yourselves therein. (9:36)

Allah said about the Sacred Area:

وَمَن يُرِدْ فِيهِ بِإِلْحَادٍ بِظُلْمٍ نُّذِقْهُ مِنْ عَذَابٍ أَلِيمٍ

...and whoever inclines to evil actions therein or to do wrong, him We shall cause to taste from a painful torment. (22:25)

It is recorded in the Two Sahihs that Abu Hurayrah narrated that Allah's Messenger said:

مَنْ حَجَّ هَذَا الْبَيْتَ، فَلَمْ يَرْفُثْ وَلَمْ يَفْسُقْ خَرَجَ مِنْ ذُنُوبِهِ كَيَوْمَ وَلَدَتْهُ أُمُّه

Whoever performed Hajj to this (Sacred) House and did not commit Rafath or Fusuq, will return sinless, just as the day his mother gave birth to him.

The Prohibition of arguing during Hajj

Allah said:

... وَلاَ جِدَالَ فِي الْحَجِّ ...

nor should there be Jidal during Hajj,

meaning, disputes and arguments.

Ibn Jarir related that Abdullah bin Mas`ud said that;

what Allah said: وَلاَ جِدَالَ فِي الْحَجِّ  (...nor dispute unjustly during the Hajj) means to argue with your companion (or fellow) until you make him angry.

This is similar to the the opinion that Miqsam and Ad-Dahhak related to Ibn Abbas.

This is also the same meaning reported from Abu Al-Aliyah, Ata, Mujahid, Sa`id bin Jubayr, Ikrimah, Jabir bin Zayd, Ata Al-Khurasani, Makhul, As-Suddi, Muqatil bin Hayyan, Amr bin Dinar, Ad-Dahhak, Ar-Rabi bin Anas, Ibrahim An-Nakhai, Ata bin Yasar, Al-Hasan, Qatadah and Az-Zuhri.

The Encouragement for Righteous Deeds and to bring Provisions for Hajj

Allah said:

... وَمَا تَفْعَلُواْ مِنْ خَيْرٍ يَعْلَمْهُ اللّهُ ...

And whatever good you do, Allah knows it.

After Allah prohibited evil in deed and tongue, He encouraged righteous, good deeds, stating that He is knowledgeable of the good that they do, and He will reward them with the best awards on the Day of Resurrection.

Allah said next:

... وَتَزَوَّدُواْ فَإِنَّ خَيْرَ الزَّادِ التَّقْوَى ...

And take provisions (with you) for the journey, but the best provision is At-Taqwa (piety, righteousness).

Al-Bukhari and Abu Dawud reported that Ibn Abbas said, "The people of Yemen used to go to Hajj without taking enough supplies with them. They used to say, `We are those who have Tawakkul (reliance on Allah).'

Allah revealed this Ayah: وَتَزَوَّدُواْ فَإِنَّ خَيْرَ الزَّادِ التَّقْوَى (And take provisions (with you) for the journey, but the best provision is At-Taqwa (piety, righteousness)).

Ibn Jarir and Ibn Marduwyah narrated that Ibn Umar said, "When people assumed Ihram, they would throw away whatever provisions they had and would acquire other types of provisions. Allah revealed: وَتَزَوَّدُواْ فَإِنَّ خَيْرَ الزَّادِ التَّقْوَى (And take a provisions (with you) for the journey, but the best provision is At-Taqwa (piety, righteousness)).

Allah forbade them from this practice and required them to take flour and Sawiq (a type of food usually eaten with dates) with them.''

The Provisions of the Hereafter

Allah said:

... فَإِنَّ خَيْرَ الزَّادِ التَّقْوَى ...

...but the best provision is At-Taqwa (piety, righteousness).

When Allah required mankind to supply themselves with what sustains them for the journeys of this life, He directed them to the necessary provisions for the Hereafter: Taqwa.

Allah said in another Ayah:

وَرِيشًا وَلِبَاسُ التَّقْوَى ذَلِكَ خَيْرٌ

...and as an adornment; and the raiment of Taqwa, that is better. (7:26)

Allah mentioned the material covering and then He mentioned the spiritual covering, which includes humbleness, obedience and Taqwa. He also stated that the latter provision is better and more beneficial than the former.

... وَاتَّقُونِ يَا أُوْلِي الأَلْبَابِ ﴿١٩٧﴾

So fear Me, O men of understanding!

meaning: `Fear My torment, punishment, and affliction for those who defy Me and do not adhere to My commands, O people of reason and understanding.'

198

لَيْسَ عَلَيْكُمْ جُنَاحٌ أَن تَبْتَغُواْ فَضْلاً مِّن رَّبِّكُمْ

There is no sin on you if you seek the bounty of your Lord (during pilgrimage by trading).

فَإِذَآ أَفَضْتُم مِّنْ عَرَفَـتٍ فَاذْكُرُواْ اللَّهَ عِندَ الْمَشْعَرِ الْحَرَامِ وَاذْكُرُوهُ كَمَا هَدَاكُمْ وَإِن كُنتُمْ مِّن قَبْلِهِ لَمِنَ الضَّآلِّينَ

Then when you leave Arafat, remember Allah (by glorifying His praises, i.e., prayers and invocations) at the Mash`ar-il-Haram. And remember Him (by invoking Allah for all good) as He has guided you, and verily you were before, of those who were astray.

Commercial Transactions during Hajj

Allah says;

لَيْسَ عَلَيْكُمْ جُنَاحٌ أَن تَبْتَغُواْ فَضْلاً مِّن رَّبِّكُمْ ...  

There is no sin on you if you seek the bounty of your Lord.

Al-Bukhari reported that Ibn Abbas said,

"Ukaz, Mijannah and Dhul-Majaz were trading posts during the time of Jahiliyyah. During that era, they did not like the idea of conducting business transactions during the Hajj season. Later, this Ayah was revealed: لَيْسَ عَلَيْكُمْ جُنَاحٌ أَن تَبْتَغُواْ فَضْلاً مِّن رَّبِّكُمْ  (There is no sin on you if you seek the bounty of your Lord), during the Hajj season.''

Abu Dawud and others recorded that Ibn Abbas said,

"They used to avoid conducting business transactions during the Hajj season, saying that these are the days of Dhikr. Allah revealed: لَيْسَ عَلَيْكُمْ جُنَاحٌ أَن تَبْتَغُواْ فَضْلاً مِّن رَّبِّكُمْ  (There is no sin on you if you seek the bounty of your Lord (during pilgrimage by trading))."

This is also the explanation of Mujahid, Sa`id bin Jubayr, Ikrimah, Mansur bin Al-Mutamir, Qatadah, Ibrahim An-Nakhai, Ar-Rabi bin Anas and others.

Ibn Jarir reported that Abu Umaymah said that; when Ibn Umar was asked about conducting trade during the Hajj, he recited the Ayah: لَيْسَ عَلَيْكُمْ جُنَاحٌ أَن تَبْتَغُواْ فَضْلاً مِّن رَّبِّكُمْ  (There is no sin on you if you seek the bounty of your Lord (during pilgrimage by trading)).

This Hadith is related to Ibn Umar with a strong chain of narrators.

This Hadith is also related to the Prophet, as Ahmad reported that Abu Umamah At-Taymi said,

"I asked Ibn Umar, `We buy (and sell during the Hajj), so do we still have a valid Hajj?'

He said, `Do you not perform Tawaf around the House, stand at Arafat, throw the pebbles and shave your heads?'

I said, `Yes.'

Ibn Umar said, `A man came to the Prophet and asked him about what you asked me, and the Prophet did not answer him until Jibril came down with this Ayah: لَيْسَ عَلَيْكُمْ جُنَاحٌ أَن تَبْتَغُواْ فَضْلاً مِّن رَّبِّكُمْ  (There is no sin on you if you seek the bounty of your Lord (during pilgrimage by trading)).

The Prophet summoned the man and said: You are pilgrims.''

Ibn Jarir narrated that Abu Salih said to Umar, "`O Leader of the faithful! Did you conduct trade transactions during the Hajj?''

He said, "Was their livelihood except during Hajj!''

Standing at Arafat

Allah said:

... فَإِذَا أَفَضْتُم مِّنْ عَرَفَاتٍ فَاذْكُرُواْ اللّهَ عِندَ الْمَشْعَرِ الْحَرَامِ ...

Then when you leave Arafat, remember Allah (by glorifying His praises, i.e., prayers and invocations) at the Mash`ar-il-Haram.

Arafat is the place where one stands during the Hajj and it is a pillar of the rituals of Hajj.

Imam Ahmad and the Sunan compilers recorded that Abdur-Rahman bin Yamar Ad-Diyli said that he heard Allah's Messenger saying:

الْحَجُّ عَرَفَاتٌ ثَلَاثًا فَمَنْ أَدْرَكَ عَرَفَةَ قَبْلَ أَنْ يَطْلُعَ الْفَجْرُ فَقَدْ أَدْرَكَ، وَأَيَّامُ مِنًى ثَلَاثَــةٌ، فَمَنْ تَعَجَّلَ فِي يَوْمَيْنِ فَلَا إِثْمَ عَلَيْهِ، وَمَنْ تَأَخَّر فَلَا إِثْمَ عَلَيه

Hajj is Arafat, (thrice). Hence, those who have stood at Arafat before dawn will have performed (the rituals of the Hajj). The days of Mina are three, and there is no sin for those who move on after two days, or for those who stay.

The time to stand on Arafat starts from noon on the day of Arafah until dawn the next day, which is the day of the Sacrifice (the tenth day of Dhul-Hijjah).

The Prophet stood at Arafat during the Farewell Hajj, after he had offered the Zuhr (noon) prayer, until sunset. He said, "Learn your rituals from me.''

In this Hadith (i.e., in the previous paragraph) he said, "Whoever stood at Arafat before dawn, will have performed (the rituals of Hajj).''

Urwah bin Mudarris bin Harithah bin Lam At-Ta'i said,

"I came to Allah's Messenger at Al-Muzdalifah when it was time to pray. I said, `O Messenger of Allah! I came from the two mountains of Tayy', and my animal became tired and I became tired. I have not left any mountain, but stood on it. Do I have a valid Hajj?'

Allah's Messenger said:

مَنْ شَهِدَ صَلَاتَنَا هذِهِ، فَوَقَفَ مَعَنَا حَتَّى نَدْفَعَ، وَقَدْ وَقَفَ بِعَرَفَةَ قَبْلَ ذلِكَ لَيْلًا أَوْ نَهارًا فَقَدْ تَمَّ حَجُّهُ وَقَضَى تَفَثَه

Whoever performed this prayer with us, stood with us until we moved forth, and had stood at Arafat before that, day or night, will have performed the Hajj and completed its rituals.''

This Hadith was collected by Imam Ahmad and the compilers of the Sunan, and At-Tirmidhi graded it Sahih.

It was reported that the mount was called Arafat because, as Abdur-Razzaq reported that Ali bin Abu Talib said,

"Allah sent Jibril to Prophet Ibrahim and he performed Hajj for him (to teach him its rituals).

When Ibrahim reached Arafat he said, `I have Araftu (I know this place).' He had come to that area before. Thereafter, it was called Arafat.''

Ibn Al-Mubarak said that Ata said,

"It was called Arafat because Jibril used to teach Ibrahim the rituals of Hajj. Ibrahim would say, `I have Araftu, I have Araftu.' It was thereafter called Arafat.''

Similar statements were attributed to Ibn Abbas, Ibn Umar and Abu Mijlaz.

Allah knows best.

Arafat is also called Al-Mash`ar Al-Haram, Al-Mash`ar Al-Aqsa and Ilal, while the mount that is in the middle of Arafat is called Jabal Ar-Rahmah (Mount of Mercy).

The Time to leave Arafat and Al-Muzdalifah

Ibn Abu Hatim reported that Ibn Abbas said,

"During the time of Jahiliyyah, the people used to stand at Arafat. When the sun would be on top of the mountains, just as the turban is on top of a man's head, they would move on. Allah's Messenger delayed moving from Arafat until sunset.'' "During the time of Jahiliyyah, the people used to stand at Arafat. When the sun would be on top of the mountains, just as the turban is on top of a man's head, they would move on. Allah's Messenger delayed moving from Arafat until sunset.''

Ibn Marduwyah related this Hadith and added,"He then stood at Al-Muzdalifah and offered the Fajr (Dawn) prayer at an early time. When the light of dawn broke, he moved on.''

This Hadith has a Hasan chain of narrators.

The long Hadith that Jabir bin Abdullah narrated, which Muslim collected, stated,

"The Prophet kept standing there (meaning at Arafat) until sunset, when the yellow light had somewhat gone and the disc of the sun had disappeared. Then, the Prophet made Usamah sit behind him, and in order to keep her under control, pulled the nose string of Al-Qaswa' so hard, that its head touched the saddle. He gestured with his right hand and said, "Proceed calmly people, calmly!"

Whenever he happened to pass over an elevated tract of sand, he lightly loosened the nose string of his camel till she climbed up and this is how they reached Al-Muzdalifah.

There, he led the Maghrib (Evening) and Isha (Night) prayers with one Adhan and two Iqamah (which announces the imminent start of the acts of the prayer) and did not glorify Allah in between them (i.e., he did not perform voluntary Rak`ah).

Allah's Messenger then laid down till dawn and offered the Fajr (Dawn) prayer with Adhan and Iqamah, when the morning light was clear.

He again mounted Al-Qaswa', and when he came to Al-Mash`ar Al-Haram, he faced towards Qiblah, supplicated to Allah, glorifying Him and saying, La ilaha illallah, and he continued standing until the daylight was very clear. He then went quickly before the sun rose.''

It is reported in the Two Sahihs that Usamah bin Zayd was asked, "How was the Prophet's pace when he moved?''

He said, "Slow, unless he found space, then he would go a little faster.''

Al-Mash`ar Al-Haram

Abdur-Razzaq reported that Ibn Umar said that all of Al-Muzdalifah is Al-Mash`ar Al-Haram.

It was reported that Ibn Umar was asked about Allah's statement: فَاذْكُرُواْ اللّهَ عِندَ الْمَشْعَرِ الْحَرَامِ  (...remember Allah (by glorifying His praises, i.e., prayers and invocations) at the Mash`ar-il-Haram), he said,

"It is the Mount and the surrounding area.''

It was reported that; Al-Mash`ar Al-Haram is what is between the two Mounts (refer to the following Hadith), as Ibn Abbas, Sa`id bin Jubayr, Ikrimah, Mujahid, As-Suddi, Ar-Rabi bin Anas, Al-Hasan and Qatadah have stated.

Imam Ahmad recorded that Jubayr bin Mut`im narrated that the Prophet said:

o كُلُّ عَرَفَاتٍ مَوْقِفٌ، وَارْفَعُوا عَنْ عُرَنَةَ،

o وَكُلُّ مُزْدَلِفَةَ مَوْقِفٌ، وَارْفَعُوا عَنْ مُحَسِّرٍ،

o وَكُلُّ فِجَاجِ مَكَّةَ مَنْحَرٌ، وَكُلُّ أَيَّامِ التَّشْرِيقِ ذَبْح

o All of Arafat is a place of standing, and keep away from Uranah.

o All of Al-Muzdalifah is a place for standing, and keep away from the bottom of Muhassir.

o All of the areas of Makkah are a place for sacrifice, and all of the days of Tashriq are days of sacrifice.

Allah then said:

... وَاذْكُرُوهُ كَمَا هَدَاكُمْ ...

And remember Him (by invoking Allah for all good) as He has guided you.

This Ayah reminds Muslims of Allah's bounty on them that He has directed and taught them the rituals of Hajj according to the guidance of Prophet Ibrahim Al-Khalil.

This is why Allah said:

... وَإِن كُنتُم مِّن قَبْلِهِ لَمِنَ الضَّآلِّينَ ﴿١٩٨﴾

...and verily, you were, before, of those who were astray.

It was said that this Ayah refers to the condition before the guidance or the Qur'an or the Messenger, all of which are correct meanings.

199

ثُمَّ أَفِيضُواْ مِنْ حَيْثُ أَفَاضَ النَّاسُ وَاسْتَغْفِرُواْ اللَّهَ

Then depart from the place whence all the people depart and ask Allah for His forgiveness.

إِنَّ اللَّهَ غَفُورٌ رَّحِيمٌ

Truly, Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most-Merciful.

The Order to stand on Arafat and to depart from it

Allah says;

ثُمَّ أَفِيضُواْ مِنْ حَيْثُ أَفَاضَ النَّاسُ ...  

Then depart from the place whence all the people depart,

This Ayah contains Allah's order to those who stand at Arafat to also move on to Al-Muzdalifah, so that they remember Allah at Al-Mash`ar Al-Haram.

Allah commands the Muslim to stand with the rest of the pilgrims at Arafat, unlike Quraysh who (before Islam) used to remain in the sanctuary, near Al-Muzdalifah, saying that they are the people of Allah's Town and the servants of His House.

Al-Bukhari reported that Aishah said,

"Quraysh and their allies, who used to be called Al-Hums, used to stay in Al-Muzdalifah while the rest of the Arabs would stand at Arafat. When Islam came, Allah commanded His Prophet to stand at Arafat and then proceed from there. Hence Allah's statement: مِنْ حَيْثُ أَفَاضَ النَّاسُ  (...from the place whence all the people depart)."

This was also said by Ibn Abbas, Mujahid, Ata, Qatadah and As-Suddi and others.

Ibn Jarir chose this opinion and said that there is Ijma (a consensus among the scholars) for it.

Imam Ahmad reported that Jubayr bin Mutim said, "My camel was lost and I went out in search of it on the day of Arafah, and I saw the Prophet standing in Arafat. I said to myself, `By Allah he is from the Hums. What has brought him here!'''

This Hadith is also reported in the Sahihayn.

Al-Bukhari reported that Ibn Abbas said that; `depart' mentioned in the Ayah refers to proceeding from Al-Muzdalifah to Mina to stone the pillars.

Allah knows best.

Asking Allah for His Forgiveness

Allah said:

... وَاسْتَغْفِرُواْ اللّهَ إِنَّ اللّهَ غَفُورٌ رَّحِيمٌ ﴿١٩٩﴾

...and ask Allah for His forgiveness. Truly, Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most-Merciful.

Allah frequently orders remembrance of Him after acts of worship are finished.

Muslim reported that; Allah's Messenger used to ask Allah for His forgiveness thrice after the prayer is finished. It is reported in the Two Sahihs that;

the Prophet encouraged Tasbih (saying Subhan Allah, i.e., Glorified is Allah), Tahmid (saying Al-Hamdu Lillah, i.e., praise be to Allah) and Takbir (saying Allahu Akbar, i.e., Allah is the Most Great) thirty-three times each (after prayer).

Ibn Marduwyah collected the Hadith that Al-Bukhari reported from Shaddad bin Aws, who stated that Allah's Messenger said:

سَيِّدُ الْاِسْتِغْفَارِ أَنْ يَقُولَ الْعَبْدُ:

The master of supplication for forgiveness, is for the servant to say:

اللَّهُمَّ أَنْتَ رَبِّي، لَا إِلهَ إِلَّا أَنْتَ،

`O Allah! You are my Lord, there is no deity worthy of worship except You.

خَلَقْتَنِي وَأَنَا عَبْدُكَ، وَأَنَا عَلى عَهْدِكَ وَوَعْدِكَ مَا اسْتَطَعْتُ،

You have created me and I am Your servant. I am on Your covenant, as much as I can be, and awaiting Your promise.

أَعُوذُ بِكَ مِنْ شَرِّ مَا صَنَعْتُ،

I seek refuge with You from the evil that I have committed.

أَبُوءُ لَكَ بِنِعْمَتِكَ عَلَيَّ، وَأَبُوءُ بِذَنْبِي، فَاغْفِرْ لِي فَإِنَّهُ لَا يَغْفِرُ الذُّنُوبَ إلَّا أَنْتَ،

I admit Your favor on me and admit my faults. So forgive me, for none except You forgives the sins.'

مَنْ قَالَهَا فِي لَيْلَةٍ فَمَاتَ فِي لَيْلَتِهِ دَخَلَ الْجَنَّــةَ، وَمَنْ قَالَهَا فِي يَوْمِهِ فَمَاتَ دَخَلَ الْجَنَّــة

Whoever said these words at night and died that same night will enter Paradise.

Whoever said it during the day and died will enter Paradise.

Furthermore, it is reported in the Two Sahihs that Abdullah bin `Amr said that Abu Bakr said,

"O Messenger of Allah! Teach me an invocation so that I may invoke (Allah) with it in my prayer.

He told me to say:

اللَّهُمَّ إِنِّي ظَلَمْتُ نَفْسِي ظُلْمًا كَثِيرًا وَلَا يَغْفِرُ الذُّنُوبَ إِلَّا أَنْتَ فَاغْفِرْ لِي مَغْفِرَةً مِنْ عِنْدِكَ، وَارْحَمْنِي إِنَّكَ أَنْتَ الْغَفُورُ الرَّحِيم

O Allah! I have done greyseat injustice to mlf and none except You forgives sins, so please forgive me and be merciful to me as You are the Forgiver, the Merciful.

There are many other Hadiths on this subject.

201

فَإِذَا قَضَيْتُم مَّنَـسِكَكُمْ فَاذْكُرُواْ اللَّهَ كَذِكْرِكُمْ ءَابَآءَكُمْ أَوْ أَشَدَّ ذِكْرًا

So when you have accomplished your Manasik, remember Allah as you remember your forefathers or with far more remembrance.

فَمِنَ النَّاسِ مَن يَقُولُ رَبَّنَآ ءَاتِنَا فِى الدُّنْيَا وَمَا لَهُ فِى الاٌّخِرَةِ مِنْ خَلَـقٍ

But of mankind there are some who say: "Our Lord! Give us (Your bounties) in this world!'' and for such there will be no portion in the Hereafter.

202

وِمِنْهُم مَّن يَقُولُ رَبَّنَآ ءَاتِنَا فِى الدُّنْيَا حَسَنَةً وَفِي الاٌّخِرَةِ حَسَنَةً وَقِنَا عَذَابَ النَّارِ

And of them there are some who say: "Our Lord! Give us in this world that which is good and in the Hereafter that which is good, and save us from the torment of the Fire!''

203

أُولَـئِكَ لَهُمْ نَصِيبٌ مِّمَّا كَسَبُواْ وَاللَّهُ سَرِيعُ الْحِسَابِ

For them there will be allotted a share for what they have earned. And Allah is swift at reckoning.

Remembrance of Allah and seeking Good in this Life and the Hereafter upon completing the Rites of Hajj

Allah says;

فَإِذَا قَضَيْتُم مَّنَاسِكَكُمْ فَاذْكُرُواْ اللّهَ كَذِكْرِكُمْ آبَاءكُمْ أَوْ أَشَدَّ ذِكْرًا ...  

So when you have accomplished your Manasik, remember Allah as you remember your forefathers or with far more remembrance.

Allah commands that He be remembered after the rituals are performed.

كَذِكْرِكُمْ آبَاءكُمْ  (...as you remember your forefathers), Sa`id bin Jubayr said that Ibn Abbas said,

"During the time of Jahiliyyah, people used to stand during the (Hajj) season, and one of them would say, `My father used to feed (the poor), help others (end their disputes, with his money), pay the Diyah (i.e., blood money),' and so forth. The only Dhikr that they had was that they would remember the deeds of their fathers. Allah then revealed to Muhammad: فَاذْكُرُواْ اللّهَ كَذِكْرِكُمْ آبَاءكُمْ أَوْ أَشَدَّ ذِكْرًا (Remember Allah as you remember your forefathers or with far more remembrance)."

Therefore, remembering Allah the Exalted and Ever High is always encouraged. We should mention that when Allah used "or'' in the Ayah, He meant to encourage the people to remember Him more than they remember their forefathers, not that the word entails a doubt (as to which is larger or bigger). This statement is similar to the Ayat:

فَهِىَ كَالْحِجَارَةِ أَوْ أَشَدُّ قَسْوَةً

...as stones or even worse in hardness. (2:74)

يَخْشَوْنَ النَّاسَ كَخَشْيَةِ اللَّهِ أَوْ أَشَدَّ خَشْيَةً

...fear men as they fear Allah or even more, (4:77)

وَأَرْسَلْنَـهُ إِلَى مِاْئَةِ أَلْفٍ أَوْ يَزِيدُونَ

And We sent him to a hundred thousand (people) or even more. (37:147)

فَكَانَ قَابَ قَوْسَيْنِ أَوْ أَدْنَى

And was at a distance of two bows' length or (even) nearer. (53:9)

Allah encourages calling Him in supplication after remembering Him, because this will make it more likely that the supplication will be accepted.

Allah also criticizes those who only supplicate to Him about the affairs of this life, while ignoring the affairs of the Hereafter.

Allah said:

... فَمِنَ النَّاسِ مَن يَقُولُ رَبَّنَا آتِنَا فِي الدُّنْيَا وَمَا لَهُ فِي الآخِرَةِ مِنْ خَلاَقٍ ﴿٢٠٠﴾

But of mankind there are some who say: "Our Lord! Give us (Your bounties) in this world!'' and for such there will be no portion in the Hereafter.

meaning, they have no share in the Hereafter. This criticism serves to discourage other people from imitating those mentioned.

Sa`id bin Jubayr said that Ibn Abbas said,

"Some Bedouins used to come to the standing area (Arafat) and supplicate saying, `O Allah! Make it a rainy year, a fertile year and a year of good child bearing.' They would not mention any of the affairs of the Hereafter. Thus, Allah revealed about them:

... فَمِنَ النَّاسِ مَن يَقُولُ رَبَّنَا آتِنَا فِي الدُّنْيَا وَمَا لَهُ فِي الآخِرَةِ مِنْ خَلاَقٍ

But of mankind there are some who say: "Our Lord! Give us (Your bounties) in this world!'' and for such there will be no portion in the Hereafter."

Next, Allah tells:

وِمِنْهُم مَّن يَقُولُ ...

And of them there are some who say:

 رَبَّنَا آتِنَا فِي الدُّنْيَا حَسَنَةً وَفِي الآخِرَةِ حَسَنَةً وَقِنَا عَذَابَ النَّارِ

Our Lord! Give us in this world that which is good and in the Hereafter that which is good, and save us from the torment of the Fire!''

Next, Allah revealed:

أُولَـئِكَ لَهُمْ نَصِيبٌ مِّمَّا كَسَبُواْ وَاللّهُ سَرِيعُ الْحِسَابِ ﴿٢٠٢﴾  

For them there will be allotted a share for what they have earned. And Allah is swift at reckoning.

Hence, Allah praised those who ask for the affairs of both this life and the Hereafter. He said:

وِمِنْهُم مَّن يَقُولُ رَبَّنَا آتِنَا فِي الدُّنْيَا حَسَنَةً وَفِي الآخِرَةِ حَسَنَةً وَقِنَا عَذَابَ النَّارِ

And of them there are some who say: "Our Lord! Give us in this world that which is good and in the Hereafter that which is good, and save us from the torment of the Fire!''

The supplication mentioned and praised in the Ayah includes all good aspects of this life and seeks refuge from all types of evil. The good of this life concerns every material request of well-being, spacious dwelling, pleasing mates, sufficient provision, beneficial knowledge, good profession or deeds, comfortable means of transportation and good praise, all of which the scholars of Tafsir have mentioned regarding this subject. All of these are but a part of the good that is sought in this life. As for the good of the Hereafter, the best of this includes acquiring Paradise, which also means acquiring safety from the greatest horror at the gathering place. It also refers to being questioned lightly and the other favors in the Hereafter.

As for acquiring safety from the Fire, it includes being directed to what leads to this good end in this world, such as avoiding the prohibitions, sins of all kinds and doubtful matters.

Al-Qasim bin Abdur-Rahman said,

"Whoever is gifted with a grateful heart, a remembering tongue and a patient body, will have been endowed with a good deed in this life, a good deed in the Hereafter and saved from the torment of the Fire.''

This is why the Sunnah encourages reciting this Du`a (i.e., in the Ayah about gaining a good deed in this life and the Hereafter).

Al-Bukhari reported that Anas bin Malik narrated that the Prophet used to say:

اللَّهُمَّ رَبَّنَا آتِنَا فِي الدُّنْيَا حَسَنَةً، وَفِي الآخِرَةِ حَسَنَــةً، وَقِنَا عَذَابَ النَّار

O Allah, our Lord! Give us that which is good in this life, that which is good in the Hereafter and save us from the torment of the Fire.

Imam Ahmad reported that Anas said,

"Allah's Messenger visited a Muslim man who had become as weak as a sick small bird. Allah's Messenger said to him, `Were you asking or supplicating to Allah about something?'

He said, `Yes. I used to say: O Allah! Whatever punishment you saved for me in the Hereafter, give it to me in this life.'

Allah's Messenger said:

سُبْحَانَ اللهِ لَا تُطِيقُهُ أَوْ لَا تَسْتَطِيعُهُ، فَهَلَّا قُلْتَ:

All praise is due to Allah! You cannot bear it -or stand it-. You should have said:

رَبَّنَا آتِنَا فِي الدُّنْيَا حَسَنَةً وَفِي الآخِرَةِ حَسَنَةً وَقِنَا عَذَابَ النَّارِ

Our Lord! Give us in this world that which is good and in the Hereafter that which is good, and save us from the torment of the Fire!

The man began reciting this Du`a and he was cured.''

Muslim also recorded it.

Al-Hakim reported that Sa`id bin Jubayr said,

"A man came to Ibn Abbas and said, `I worked for some people and settled for a part of my compensation in return for their taking me to perform Hajj with them. Is this acceptable?'

Ibn Abbas said, `You are among those whom Allah described:

أُولَـئِكَ لَهُمْ نَصِيبٌ مِّمَّا كَسَبُواْ وَاللّهُ سَرِيعُ الْحِسَابِ

For them there will be allotted a share for what they have earned. And Allah is swift at reckoning.

Al-Hakim then commented; "This Hadith is authentic according to the criteria of the Two Sheikhs (Al-Bukhari and Muslim) although they did not record it."

203

وَاذْكُرُواْ اللَّهَ فِى أَيَّامٍ مَّعْدُودَتٍ

And remember Allah during the Appointed Days.

فَمَن تَعَجَّلَ فِى يَوْمَيْنِ فَلاَ إِثْمَ عَلَيْهِ وَمَن تَأَخَّرَ فَلا إِثْمَ عَلَيْهِ لِمَنِ اتَّقَى وَاتَّقُواْ اللَّهَ وَاعْلَمُوا أَنَّكُمْ إِلَيْهِ تُحْشَرُونَ

But whosoever hastens to leave in two days, there is no sin on him and whosoever stays on, there is no sin on him, if his aim is to do good and obey Allah (fear Him), and know that you will surely be gathered unto Him.

Remembering Allah during the Days of Tashriq - Days of Eating and Drinking

Allah says;

وَاذْكُرُواْ اللّهَ فِي أَيَّامٍ مَّعْدُودَاتٍ ...  

And remember Allah during the Appointed Days.

Ibn Abbas said, `The Appointed Days are the Days of Tashriq (11-12-13th of Dhul-Hijjah) while the Known Days are the (first) ten (days of Dhul-Hijjah).''

Ikrimah said that: وَاذْكُرُواْ اللّهَ فِي أَيَّامٍ مَّعْدُودَاتٍ  (And remember Allah during the Appointed Days), means reciting the Takbir -- Allahu Akbar, Allahu Akbar, during the days of Tashriq after the compulsory prayers.

Imam Ahmad reported that Uqbah bin Amr said that Allah's Messenger said:

يَوْمُ عَرَفَةَ، وَيَوْمُ النَّحْرِ، وَأَيَّامُ التَّشْرِيقِ، عِيدُنَا أَهْلَ الْإسْلَامِ، وَهِيَ أَيَّامُ أَكْلٍ وَشُرْب

The day of Arafah (9th of Dhul-Hijjah), the day of the Sacrifice (10th) and the days of the Tashriq (11-12-13th) are our `Id (festival) for we people of Islam. These are days of eating and drinking.

Imam Ahmad reported that Nubayshah Al-Hudhali said that Allah's Messenger said:

أَيَّامُ التَّشْرِيقِ أَيَّامُ أَكْلٍ وشُرْبٍ وَذِكْرِ الله

The days of Tashriq are days of eating, drinking and Dhikr (remembering) of Allah.)

Muslim also recorded this Hadith.

We also mentioned the Hadith of Jubayr bin Mut`im:

عَرَفَةُ كُلُّهَا مَوْقِفٌ، وَأيَّامُ التَّشْرِيقِ كُلُّهَا ذَبْح

All of Arafat is a standing place and all of the days of Tashriq are days of Sacrifice.

We also mentioned the Hadith by Abdur-Rahman bin Ya`mar Ad-Diyli:

وَأَيَّامُ مِنىً ثَلَاثَةٌ فَمَنْ تَعَجَّلَ فِي يَوْمَيْنِ فَلَا إثْمَ عَلَيْهِ وَمَنْ تَأَخَّرَ فَلَا إِثْمَ عَلَيْه

The days of Mina (Tashriq) are three. Those who hasten in two days then there is no sin in it, and those who delay (i.e., remain in Mina for a third day) then there is no sin in it.)

Ibn Jarir reported that Abu Hurayrah narrated that Allah's Messenger said:

أَيَّامُ التَّشْرِيقِ أيَّامُ طُعْمٍ وَذِكْرِ الله

The days of Tashriq are days of eating and remembering Allah.

Ibn Jarir reported that Abu Hurayrah narrated that;

Allah's Messenger sent Abdullah bin Hudhayfah to Mina proclaiming:

لَا تَصُومُوا هذِه الْأَيَّامَ، فَإنَّهَا أَيَّامُ أَكْلٍ وَشُرْبٍ وَذِكْرِ اللهِ عَزَّ وَجَل

Do not fast these days (i.e., Tashriq days), for they are days of eating, drinking and remembering Allah the Exalted and Most Honored.

The Appointed Days

Miqsam said that Ibn Abbas said that; the Appointed Days are the days of Tashriq, four days: the day of the Sacrifice (10th of Dhul-Hijjah) and three days after that.

This opinion was also reported of Ibn Umar, Ibn Az-Zubayr, Abu Musa, Ata, Mujahid, Ikrimah, Sa`id bin Jubayr, Abu Malik, Ibrahim An-Nakhai, Yahya bin Abu Kathir, Al-Hasan, Qatadah, As-Suddi, Az-Zuhri, Ar-Rabi bin Anas, Ad-Dahhak, Muqatil bin Hayyan, Ata Al-Khurasani, Malik bin Anas, and others.

In addition, the apparent meaning of the following Ayah supports this opinion: فَمَن تَعَجَّلَ فِي يَوْمَيْنِ فَلاَ إِثْمَ عَلَيْهِ وَمَن تَأَخَّرَ فَلا إِثْمَ عَلَيْهِ  (But whosoever hastens to leave in two days, there is no sin on him and whosoever stays on, there is no sin on him).

So the Ayah hints to the three days after the day of Sacrifice.

Allah's statement:

وَاذْكُرُواْ اللّهَ فِي أَيَّامٍ مَّعْدُودَاتٍ

And remember Allah during the Appointed Days,

directs remembering Allah upon slaughtering the animals, after the prayers, and by Dhikr (supplication) in general.

It also includes Takbir and remembering Allah while throwing the pebbles every day during the Tashriq days.

A Hadith that Abu Dawud and several others collected states:

Tawaf around the House, Sa`i between As-Safa and Al-Marwah and throwing the pebbles were legislated so that Allah is remembered in Dhikr.

...فَمَن تَعَجَّلَ فِي يَوْمَيْنِ فَلاَ إِثْمَ عَلَيْهِ وَمَن تَأَخَّرَ فَلا إِثْمَ عَلَيْهِ لِمَنِ اتَّقَى ...

But whosoever hastens to leave in two days, there is no sin on him and whosoever stays on, there is no sin on him, if his aim is to do good

When mentioning the first procession (refer to 2:199) and the second procession of the people upon the end of the Hajj season, when they start to return to their areas, after they had gathered during the rituals and at the standing places, Allah said,

... وَاتَّقُواْ اللّهَ وَاعْلَمُوا أَنَّكُمْ إِلَيْهِ تُحْشَرُونَ ﴿٢٠٣﴾

and obey Allah (fear Him), and know that you will surely be gathered unto Him.

Similarly, Allah said:

وَهُوَ الَّذِى ذَرَأَكُمْ فِى الاٌّرْضِ وَإِلَيْهِ تُحْشَرُونَ

And it is He Who has created you on the earth, and to Him you shall be gathered back. (23:79)

204

وَمِنَ النَّاسِ مَن يُعْجِبُكَ قَوْلُهُ فِى الْحَيَوةِ الدُّنْيَا وَيُشْهِدُ اللَّهَ عَلَى مَا فِى قَلْبِهِ وَهُوَ أَلَدُّ الْخِصَامِ

And of mankind there is he whose speech may please you (O Muhammad), in this worldly life, and he calls Allah to witness as to that which is in his heart, yet he is the most quarrelsome of the opponents.

205

وَإِذَا تَوَلَّى سَعَى فِى الاٌّرْضِ لِيُفْسِدَ فِيهَا وَيُهْلِكَ الْحَرْثَ وَالنَّسْلَ وَاللَّهُ لاَ يُحِبُّ الْفَسَادَ

And when he turns away (from you O Muhammad), his effort in the land is to make mischief therein and to destroy the crops and the cattle, and Allah likes not mischief.

206

وَإِذَا قِيلَ لَهُ اتَّقِ اللَّهَ أَخَذَتْهُ الْعِزَّةُ بِالإِثْمِ فَحَسْبُهُ جَهَنَّمُ وَلَبِئْسَ الْمِهَادُ

And when it is said to him, "Fear Allah'', he is led by arrogance to (more) crime. So enough for him is Hell, and worst indeed is that place to rest!

207

وَمِنَ النَّاسِ مَن يَشْرِى نَفْسَهُ ابْتِغَآءَ مَرْضَاتِ اللَّهِ وَاللَّهُ رَءُوفٌ بِالْعِبَادِ

And of mankind is he who would sell himself, seeking the pleasure of Allah. And Allah is full of kindness to (His) servants.

The Characteristics of the Hypocrites

Allah says;

وَمِنَ النَّاسِ مَن يُعْجِبُكَ قَوْلُهُ فِي الْحَيَاةِ الدُّنْيَا وَيُشْهِدُ اللّهَ عَلَى مَا فِي قَلْبِهِ ...  

And of mankind there is he whose speech may please you (O Muhammad), in this worldly life, and he calls Allah to witness as to that which is in his heart,

As-Suddi said that;

these Ayat were revealed about Al-Akhnas bin Shariq Ath-Thaqafi who came to Allah's Messenger and announced his Islam although his heart concealed otherwise.

Ibn Abbas narrated that;

these Ayat were revealed about some of the hypocrites who criticized Khubayb and his companions who were killed during the Raji` incident. Thereafter, Allah sent down His condemnation of the hypocrites and His praise for Khubayb and his companions:

النَّاسِ مَن يَشْرِي نَفْسَهُ ابْتِغَاء مَرْضَاتِ اللّهِ  

And of mankind is he who would sell himself, seeking the pleasure of Allah. (2:207)

It was also said that; they refer to the hypocrites and the believers in general.

This is the opinion of Qatadah, Mujahid, Ar-Rabi bin Anas and several others, and it is correct.

Ibn Jarir related that Al-Qurazi said that;

Nawf Al-Bikali, who used to read (previous Divine) Books said, "I find the description of some members of this Ummah in the previously revealed Books of Allah:

they (hypocrites) are people who use the religion to gain material benefit. Their tongues are sweeter than honey, but their hearts are more bitter than Sabir (a bitter plant, aloe). They show the people the appearance of sheep while their hearts hide the viciousness of wolves. Allah said, `They dare challenge Me, but they are deceived by Me. I swear by Myself that I will send a Fitnah (trial, calamity) on them that will make the wise man bewildered.'

I contemplated about these statements and found them in the Qur'an describing the hypocrites:

وَمِنَ النَّاسِ مَن يُعْجِبُكَ قَوْلُهُ فِي الْحَيَاةِ الدُّنْيَا وَيُشْهِدُ اللّهَ عَلَى مَا فِي قَلْبِهِ

And of mankind there is he whose speech may please you (O Muhammad), in this worldly life, and he calls Allah to witness as to that which is in his heart.

This statement by Al-Qurazi is Hasan Sahih.

Allah said:

... وَيُشْهِدُ اللّهَ عَلَى مَا فِي قَلْبِهِ ...

...and he calls Allah to witness as to that which is in his heart,

This Ayah indicates that such people pretend to be Muslims, but defy Allah by the disbelief and hypocrisy that their hearts conceal.

Similarly Allah said:

يَسْتَخْفُونَ مِنَ النَّاسِ وَلاَ يَسْتَخْفُونَ مِنَ اللَّهِ

They may hide (their crimes) from men, but they cannot hide (them) from Allah. (4:108)

This Tafsir was reported from Ibn Abbas by Ibn Ishaq.

It was also said that; the Ayah means that when such people announce their Islam, they swear by Allah that what is in their hearts is the same of what their tongues are pronouncing.

This is also a correct meaning for the Ayah that was chosen by Abdur-Rahman bin Zayd bin Aslam.

It is also the choice of Ibn Jarir who related it to Ibn Abbas and Mujahid.

Allah knows best.

Allah said:

... وَهُوَ أَلَدُّ الْخِصَامِ ﴿٢٠٤﴾

Yet he is the most Aladd of the opponents.

The Ayah used the word Aladd here, which literally means `wicked' (here it means `quarrelsome').

A variation of the word Ludda was also used in another Ayah:

وَتُنْذِرَ بِهِ قَوْماً لُّدّاً

So that you (Muhammad) warn with it (the Qur'an) a Ludda people. (19:97)

Hence, a hypocrite lies, alters the truth when he quarrels and does not care for the truth. Rather, he deviates from the truth, deceives and becomes most quarrelsome.

It is reported in Sahih that Allah's Messenger said:

آيَةُ الْمُنَافِقِ ثَلاثٌ:

ˇ إِذَا حَدَّثَ كَذَبَ،

ˇ وَإذَا عَاهَدَ غَدَرَ،

ˇ وَإِذَا خَاصَمَ فَجَر

The signs of a hypocrite are three:

ˇ Whenever he speaks, he tells a lie.

ˇ Whenever he promises, he always breaks it (his promise).

ˇ If you have a dispute with him, he is most quarrelsome.

Imam Bukhari reported that Aishah narrated that the Prophet said:

إِنَّ أَبْغَضَ الرِّجَالِ إلَى اللهِ الْألَدُّ الْخَصِم

The most hated person to Allah is he who is Aladd and Khasim (meaning most quarrelsome).

Allah then said:

وَإِذَا تَوَلَّى سَعَى فِي الأَرْضِ لِيُفْسِدَ فِيِهَا وَيُهْلِكَ الْحَرْثَ وَالنَّسْلَ ...   

And when he turns away (from you O Muhammad), he struggles in the land to make mischief therein and to destroy the crops and the cattle,

This Ayah indicates that such persons are deviant in the tongue, evil in the deeds, their words are fabricated, their belief is wicked and their works are immoral.

The Ayah used the (Arabic word) Sa`a (literally, `tries' or `intends').

This word was also used to describe Pharaoh:

ثُمَّ أَدْبَرَ يَسْعَى

فَحَشَرَ فَنَادَى

فَقَالَ أَنَاْ رَبُّكُمُ الاٌّعْلَى

فَأَخَذَهُ اللَّهُ نَكَالَ الاٌّخِرَةِ وَالاٍّوْلَى

إِنَّ فِى ذَلِكَ لَعِبْرَةً لِّمَن يَخْشَى

Then he turned his back, Yas`a (striving hard against Allah). Then he gathered (his people) and cried aloud saying, `I am your lord, most high.' So Allah, seized him with a punishing example for his last and first transgression. Verily, in this is an instructive admonition for whosoever fears Allah. (79:22-26)

Sa`a was also used in the Ayah):

يأَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ إِذَا نُودِىَ لِلصَّلَوةِ مِن يَوْمِ الْجُمُعَةِ فَاسْعَوْاْ إِلَى ذِكْرِ اللَّهِ

O you who believe (Muslims)! When the call is proclaimed for the Salah (prayer) on the day of Friday (Jumuah prayer), As`aw come to the remembrance of Allah. (62:9)

This Ayah means, `(when the call to the Friday prayer is announced) intend and then proceed to attend the Friday prayer.'

We should mention that hastening to the mosque is condemned by the Sunnah (as this is another meaning for the word Sa`a):

إذَا أَتَيْتُمُ الصَّلَاةَ فَلَا تَأْتُوهَا وَأَنْتُمْ تَسْعَوْنَ، وَأْتُوهَا وَعَلَيْكُمُ السَّكِينَةُ والْوَقَار

When you come to attend the prayer, do not come in a Sa`i (haste). Rather, come to it while walking at ease and in peace (or grace).

The hypocrite has no motive in this life but to cause mischief and to destroy the crops and the offspring, including what the animals produce and what the people depend on for their livelihood.

Mujahid said, "If the hypocrite strives for mischief in the land, Allah prevents the rain from falling and thus the crops and the offspring perish.''

The Ayah continues:

...وَاللّهُ لاَ يُحِبُّ الفَسَادَ ﴿٢٠٥﴾

...and Allah likes not mischief.

that is, Allah does not like those who possess these characteristics, or those who act like this.

Rejecting Advice is Characteristic of the Hypocrites

Allah said:

وَإِذَا قِيلَ لَهُ اتَّقِ اللّهَ أَخَذَتْهُ الْعِزَّةُ بِالإِثْمِ ...  

And when it is said to him, "Fear Allah'', he is led by arrogance to (more) crime.

This Ayah indicates that when the hypocrite, who deviates in his speech and deeds, is advised and commanded to fear Allah, refrain from his evil deeds and adhere to the truth, he refuses and becomes angry and outraged, as he is used to doing evil.

This Ayah is similar to what Allah said:

وَإِذَا تُتْلَى عَلَيْهِمْ ءَايَـتُنَا بَيِّنَـتٍ تَعْرِفُ فِى وُجُوهِ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُواْ الْمُنْكَرَ يَكَـدُونَ يَسْطُونَ بِالَّذِينَ يَتْلُونَ عَلَيْهِمْ ءَايَـتُنَا قُلْ أَفَأُنَبِّئُكُم بِشَرٍّ مِّن ذلِكُمُ النَّارُ وَعَدَهَا اللَّهُ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُواْ وَبِئْسَ الْمَصِيرُ

And when Our clear verses are recited to them, you will notice a denial on the faces of the disbelievers! They are nearly ready to attack with violence those who recite Our verses to them. Say: "Shall I tell you of something worse than that The Fire (of Hell) which Allah has promised to those who disbelieved, and worst indeed is that destination! (22:72)

This is why in this Ayah, Allah said:

... فَحَسْبُهُ جَهَنَّمُ وَلَبِئْسَ الْمِهَادُ ﴿٢٠٦﴾

So enough for him is Hell, and worst indeed is that place to rest.

meaning, the Fire is enough punishment for the hypocrite.

The Sincere Believer prefers pleasing Allah

After Allah described the evil characteristics of the hypocrites, He mentioned the good qualities of the believers. Allah said:

وَمِنَ النَّاسِ مَن يَشْرِي نَفْسَهُ ابْتِغَاء مَرْضَاتِ اللّهِ ...  

And of mankind is he who would sell himself, seeking the pleasure of Allah.

Ibn Abbas, Anas, Sa`id bin Musayyib, Abu Uthman An-Nahdi, Ikrimah and several other scholars said that;

this Ayah was revealed about Suhayb bin Sinan Ar-Rumi. When Suhayb became a Muslim in Makkah and intended to migrate (to Al-Madinah), the people (Quraysh) prevented him from migrating with his money.

They said that if he forfeits his property, he is free to migrate. He abandoned his money and preferred to migrate, and Allah revealed this Ayah about him.

Umar bin Khattab and several other Companions met Suhayb close to the outskirts of Al-Madinah at Al-Harrah (flat lands with black stones). They said to him, "The trade has indeed been successful.''

He answered them, "You too, may Allah never allow your trade to fail. What is the matter?''

Umar told him that Allah has revealed this Ayah (2:207) about him.

It was also reported that Allah's Messenger said, "The trade has been successful, O Suhayb!''

The meaning of the Ayah (2:207) includes every Mujahid in the way of Allah.

Allah said in another Ayah:

إِنَّ اللَّهَ اشْتَرَى مِنَ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ أَنفُسَهُمْ وَأَمْوَلَهُمْ بِأَنَّ لَهُمُ الّجَنَّةَ يُقَـتِلُونَ فِى سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ فَيَقْتُلُونَ وَيُقْتَلُونَ وَعْدًا عَلَيْهِ حَقًّا فِي التَّوْرَاةِ وَالإِنجِيلِ وَالْقُرْءانِ وَمَنْ أَوْفَى بِعَهْدِهِ مِنَ اللَّهِ فَاسْتَبْشِرُواْ بِبَيْعِكُمُ الَّذِى بَايَعْتُمْ بِهِ وَذَلِكَ هُوَ الْفَوْزُ الْعَظِيمُ

Verily, Allah has purchased of the believers their lives and their properties for (the price) that theirs shall be the Paradise. They fight in Allah's cause, so they kill (others) and are killed. It is a promise in truth which is binding on Him in the Tawrah and the Injil and the Qur'an. And who is truer to his covenant than Allah Then rejoice in the bargain which you have concluded. That is the supreme success. (9:111)

When Hisham bin Amr penetrated the lines of the enemy, some people criticized him. Umar bin Al-Khattab and Abu Hurayrah refuted them and recited this Ayah:

وَمِنَ النَّاسِ مَن يَشْرِي نَفْسَهُ ابْتِغَاء مَرْضَاتِ اللّهِ وَاللّهُ رَؤُوفٌ بِالْعِبَادِ ﴿٢٠٧﴾

And of mankind is he who would sell himself, seeking the pleasure of Allah. And Allah is full of kindness to (His) servants.

208

يَـأَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ ادْخُلُواْ فِي السِّلْمِ كَآفَّةً وَلاَ تَتَّبِعُواْ خُطُوَتِ الشَّيْطَـنِ إِنَّهُ لَكُمْ عَدُوٌّ مُّبِينٌ

O you who believe! Enter Silm perfectly, and follow not the footsteps of Shaytan (Satan). Verily, he is to you a plain enemy.

209

فَإِن زَلَلْتُمْ مِّن بَعْدِ مَا جَآءَتْكُمُ الْبَيِّنَـتُ فَاعْلَمُواْ أَنَّ اللَّهَ عَزِيزٌ حَكِيمٌ

Then if you slide back after the clear signs (Prophet Muhammad, and this Qur'an and Islam) have come to you, then know that Allah is All-Mighty, All-Wise.

Entering Islam in its Entirety is obligated

Allah says;

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ ادْخُلُواْ فِي السِّلْمِ كَآفَّةً ...  

O you who believe! Enter Silm perfectly,

Allah commands His servants who believe in Him and have faith in His Messenger to implement all of Islam's legislation and law, to adhere to all of its commandments, as much as they can, and to refrain from all of its prohibitions.

Al-Awfi said that Ibn Abbas said, and also Mujahid, Tawus, Ad-Dahhak, Ikrimah, Qatadah, As-Suddi and Ibn Zayd said that Allah's statement: ادْخُلُواْ فِي السِّلْمِ  (Enter Silm), means Islam.

Allah's statement: كَآفَّةً  (...perfectly) means, in its entirety.

This is the Tafsir of Ibn Abbas, Mujahid, Abu Al-Aliyah, Ikrimah, Ar-Rabi bin Anas, As-Suddi, Muqatil bin Hayyan, Qatadah and Ad-Dahhak.

Mujahid said that the Ayah means, `Perform all the good works and the various pious deeds, this is especially addressed to those from among the People of the Scripture who embraced the faith.'

Ibn Abu Hatim reported that Ibn Abbas said that: يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ ادْخُلُواْ فِي السِّلْمِ كَآفَّةً  (O you who believe! Enter Silm perfectly),

refers to the believers among the People of the Scripture. This is because they believed in Allah; some of them still followed some parts of the Tawrah and the previous revelations. So Allah said:  ادْخُلُواْ فِي السِّلْمِ كَآفَّةً  (Enter Islam perfectly). Allah thus commanded them to embrace the legislation of the religion of Muhammad in its entirety and to avoid abandoning any part of it. They should no longer adhere to the Tawrah.

Allah then said:

... وَلاَ تَتَّبِعُواْ خُطُوَاتِ الشَّيْطَانِ ...

...and follow not the footsteps of Shaytan,

meaning, perform the acts of worship and avoid what Satan commands you to do. This is because:

إِنَّمَا يَأْمُرُكُم بِالسُّوءِ وَالْفَحْشَآءِ وَأَن تَقُولُواْ عَلَى اللَّهِ مَا لاَ تَعْلَمُونَ

He (Shaytan) commands you only what is evil and Fahishah (sinful), and that you should say about Allah what you know not. (2:169)

إِنَّمَا يَدْعُو حِزْبَهُ لِيَكُونُواْ مِنْ أَصْحَـبِ السَّعِيرِ

He only invites his Hizb (followers) that they may become the dwellers of the blazing Fire. (35:6)

Hence, Allah said:

... إِنَّهُ لَكُمْ عَدُوٌّ مُّبِينٌ ﴿٢٠٨﴾  

Verily, he is to you an open enemy.

Allah said:

فَإِن زَلَلْتُمْ مِّن بَعْدِ مَا جَاءتْكُمُ الْبَيِّنَاتُ ...  

Then if you slide back after the clear signs have come to you,

meaning, if you deviate from the Truth after clear proofs have been established against you.

... فَاعْلَمُواْ أَنَّ اللّهَ عَزِيزٌ ...

...then know that Allah is All-Mighty,

in His punishment, and no one can escape His vengeance or defeat Him.

... حَكِيمٌ ﴿٢٠٩﴾

All-Wise.

in His decisions, actions and rulings.

Hence Abu Al-Aliyah, Qatadah and Ar-Rabi bin Anas said, "He is Mighty in His vengeance, Wise in His decision.''

210

هَلْ يَنظُرُونَ إِلاَّ أَن يَأْتِيَهُمُ اللَّهُ فِي ظُلَلٍ مِّنَ الْغَمَامِ وَالْمَلَـئِكَةُ وَقُضِىَ الأَمْرُ وَإِلَى اللَّهِ تُرْجَعُ الأُمُورُ

Do they then wait for anything other than that Allah should come to them over the shadows of the clouds and the angels (Then) the case would be already judged. And to Allah return all matters (for decision).

Do not delay embracing the Faith

Allah says;

هَلْ يَنظُرُونَ إِلاَّ أَن يَأْتِيَهُمُ اللّهُ فِي ظُلَلٍ مِّنَ الْغَمَامِ وَالْمَلآئِكَةُ ...  

Do they then wait for anything other than that Allah should come to them over the shadows of the clouds and the angels,

on the Day of Resurrection to judge the early and the latter creations.

Allah shall then reward each according to his or her deeds; and whoever does good shall see it, and whoever does evil shall see it.

This is why Allah said:

... وَقُضِيَ الأَمْرُ وَإِلَى اللّهِ تُرْجَعُ الأمُورُ ﴿٢١٠﴾

(Then) the case would be already judged. And to Allah return all matters (for decision).

Similarly, Allah said:

كَلاَّ إِذَا دُكَّتِ الاٌّرْضُ دَكّاً دَكّاً

وَجَآءَ رَبُّكَ وَالْمَلَكُ صَفّاً صَفّاً

وَجِىءَ يَوْمَئِذٍ بِجَهَنَّمَ يَوْمَئِذٍ يَتَذَكَّرُ الإِنسَـنُ وَأَنَّى لَهُ الذِّكْرَى

Nay! When the earth is ground to powder. And your Lord comes with the angels in rows. And Hell will be brought near that Day. On that Day will man remember, but how will that remembrance (then) avail him! (89:21-23)

and,

هَلْ يَنظُرُونَ إِلاَ أَن تَأْتِيهُمُ الْمَلَـئِكَةُ أَوْ يَأْتِىَ رَبُّكَ أَوْ يَأْتِىَ بَعْضُ ءَايَـتِ رَبِّكَ

Do they then wait for anything other than that the angels should come to them, or that your Lord (Allah) should come, or that some of the signs of your Lord should come (i. e., portents of the Hour, e.g., rising of the sun from the west)! (6:158)

Abu Jafar Razi reported that Abu Al-Aliyah narrated that: هَلْ يَنظُرُونَ إِلاَّ أَن يَأْتِيَهُمُ اللّهُ فِي ظُلَلٍ مِّنَ الْغَمَامِ وَالْمَلآئِكَةُ  (Do they then wait for anything other than that Allah should come to them over the shadows of the clouds and the angels) means,

the angels will descend on the shadows of clouds, while Allah comes as He wills.

Some of the reciters read it,

هَلْ يَنظُرُونَ إِلاَّ أَن يَأْتِيَهُمُ اللّهُوَ الْمَلآئِكَةُ فِي ظُلَلٍ مِّنَ الْغَمَامِ

Do they then wait for anything other than that Allah should come to them and also the angels over the shadows of the clouds.

This is similar to Allah's other statement:

وَيَوْمَ تَشَقَّقُ السَّمَآءُ بِالْغَمَـمِ وَنُزِّلَ الْمَلَـئِكَةُ تَنزِيلاً

And (remember) the Day when the heaven shall be rent asunder with clouds, and the angels will be sent down, with a grand descending. (25:25)

211

سَلْ بَنِى إِسْرَءِيلَ كَمْ آتَيْنَـهُم مِّنْ آيَةٍ بَيِّنَةٍ

Ask the Children of Israel how many clear Ayat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) We gave them.

وَمَن يُبَدِّلْ نِعْمَةَ اللَّهِ مِن بَعْدِ مَا جَآءَتْهُ فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ شَدِيدُ الْعِقَابِ

And whoever changes Allah's favor after it has come to him, (e.g., renounces the religion of Allah (Islam) and accepts Kufr (disbelief)) then surely, Allah is severe in punishment.

212

زُيِّنَ لِلَّذِينَ كَفَرُواْ الْحَيَوةُ الدُّنْيَا وَيَسْخَرُونَ مِنَ الَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ

Beautified is the life of this world for those who disbelieve, and they mock at those who believe.

وَالَّذِينَ اتَّقَواْ فَوْقَهُمْ يَوْمَ الْقِيَـمَةِ وَاللَّهُ يَرْزُقُ مَن يَشَآءُ بِغَيْرِ حِسَابٍ

But those who have Taqwa, will be above them on the Day of Resurrection. And Allah gives (of His bounty, blessings, favors, and honors on the Day of Resurrection) to whom He wills without limit.

The Punishment for changing Allah's Favor and mocking the Believers

Allah says;

سَلْ بَنِي إِسْرَائِيلَ كَمْ آتَيْنَاهُم مِّنْ آيَةٍ بَيِّنَةٍ ...  

Ask the Children of Israel how many clear Ayat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) We gave them.

Allah mentioned that the Children of Israel, were witnesses to many clear signs that attest to the truth of Moses regarding what he was sent with for them. They witnessed;

ˇ his hand (when it became lit with light),

ˇ his parting the sea,

ˇ his striking the rock (and water flowed from the rock),

ˇ the clouds that shaded them during the intense heat,

ˇ the manna and the quails, and so forth.

These signs attested to the existence of the Creator and the truth of Moses by whose hand these signs appeared. Yet, so many among them changed Allah's favor, by preferring disbelief to faith and by ignoring Allah's favors,

... وَمَن يُبَدِّلْ نِعْمَةَ اللّهِ مِن بَعْدِ مَا جَاءتْهُ فَإِنَّ اللّهَ شَدِيدُ الْعِقَابِ ﴿٢١١﴾

And whoever changes Allah's favor after it had come to him, then surely, Allah is severe in punishment.

Similarly, Allah said about the disbelievers of Quraysh:

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, ـ and what an evil place to settle in! (14:28-29)

Then Allah said;

زُيِّنَ لِلَّذِينَ كَفَرُواْ الْحَيَاةُ الدُّنْيَا وَيَسْخَرُونَ مِنَ الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ وَالَّذِينَ اتَّقَواْ فَوْقَهُمْ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ ...

Beautified is the life of this world for those who disbelieve, and they mock at those who believe. But those who have Taqwa, will be above them on the Day of Resurrection.

And Allah gives (of His bounty, blessings, favors, and honors on the Day of Resurrection) to whom He wills without limit.

Allah states that He has made the life of this world beautiful for the disbelievers who are satisfied with it, who collect wealth, but refrain from spending it on what they have been commanded, which could earn them Allah's pleasure.

Instead, they ridicule the believers who ignore this life and who spend whatever they earn on what pleases their Lord. The believers spend seeking Allah's Face, and this is why they have gained the ultimate happiness and the best share on the Day of the Return. Therefore, they will be exalted above the disbelievers at the Gathering Place, when they are gathered, during the resurrection and in their final destination. The believers will reside in the highest grades in the utmost highs, while the disbelievers will reside in the lowest of lows (in the Fire).

This is why Allah said:

...  وَاللّهُ يَرْزُقُ مَن يَشَاء بِغَيْرِ حِسَابٍ ﴿٢١٢﴾

And Allah gives to whom He wills without limit.

This Ayah indicates that Allah gives sustenance to whomever He wills of His servants without count or limit in this and the Hereafter.

A Hadith has stated (that Allah said):

ابْنَ آدَمَ أَنْفِقْ أُنْفِقْ عَلَيْك

O son of Adam! Spend (in Allah's cause) and I (Allah) will spend on you.

The Prophet said:

أَنْفِقْ بِلَالُ وَلَا تَخْشَ مِنْ ذِي الْعَرْشِ إِقْلَالًا

O Bilal! Spend and do not fear deprivation from the Owner of the Throne.

Allah said:

وَمَآ أَنفَقْتُمْ مِّن شَىْءٍ فَهُوَ يُخْلِفُهُ

...and whatsoever you spend of anything (in Allah's cause), He will replace it. (34:39)

In addition, it is reported in the Sahih that the Prophet said:

أَنَّ مَلَكَيْنِ يَنْزِلَانِ مِنَ السَّمَاءِ صَبِيحَةَ كُلِّ يَوْمٍ فَيَقُولُ أحَدُهُمَا:اللَّهُمَّ أَعْطِ مُنْفِقًا خَلَفًا، وَيَقُولُ الآخَرُ: اللَّهُمَّ أعْطِ مُمْسِكًا تَلَفًا

Every day two angels come down from heavens and one of them says, `O Allah! Compensate every person who spends in Your cause,' and the other (angel) says, `O Allah! Destroy every miser.'

Also in the Sahih:

يَقُولُ ابْنُ آدَمَ: مَالِي مَالِي.

وَهَلْ لَكَ مِنْ مَالِكَ إِلَّا مَا أَكَلْتَ فَأَفْنَيْتَ، وَمَا لَبِسْتَ فَأَبْلَيْتَ، وَمَا تَصَدَّقْتَ فَأَمْضَيْتَ، وَمَا سِوَى ذلِكَ فَذَاهِبٌ وَتَارِكُهُ لِلنَّاس

The son of Adam says, `My money, my money!'

Yet, what is your money except that which you eat and use up, wear and tear, and spend in charity and thus keep (in your record). Other than that, it will go away and will be left for the people (the inheritors).

In addition, Imam Ahmad reported that the Prophet said:

الدُّنْيَا دَارُ مَنْ لَا دَارَ لَهُ، وَمَالُ مَنْ لَا مَالَ لَهُ، وَلَهَا يَجْمَعُ مَنْ لَا عَقْلَ لَه

The Dunya (life of this world) is the residence of those who have no residence, the wealth of those who have no wealth, and it is harvested by those who have no sense of reason.

213

كَانَ النَّاسُ أُمَّةً وَحِدَةً فَبَعَثَ اللَّهُ النَّبِيِّينَ مُبَشِّرِينَ وَمُنذِرِينَ وَأَنزَلَ مَعَهُمُ الْكِتَـبَ بِالْحَقِّ لِيَحْكُمَ بَيْنَ النَّاسِ فِيمَا اخْتَلَفُواْ فِيهِ

Mankind was one community and Allah sent Prophets with glad tidings and warnings, and with them He sent down the Scripture in truth to judge between people in matters wherein they differed.

وَمَا اخْتَلَفَ فِيهِ إِلاَّ الَّذِينَ أُوتُوهُ مِن بَعْدِ مَا جَآءَتْهُمُ الْبَيِّنَـتُ بَغْيًا بَيْنَهُمْ

And only those to whom (the Scripture) was given differed concerning it, after clear proofs had come unto them, through hatred, one to another.

فَهَدَى اللَّهُ الَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ لِمَا اخْتَلَفُواْ فِيهِ مِنَ الْحَقِّ بِإِذْنِهِ وَاللَّهُ يَهْدِى مَن يَشَآءُ إِلَى صِرَاطٍ مُّسْتَقِيمٍ

Then Allah by His leave guided those who believed to the truth of that wherein they differed. And Allah guides whom He wills to the straight path.

 Disputing, after the Clear Signs have come, indicates Deviation

Allah says;

كَانَ النَّاسُ أُمَّةً وَاحِدَةً فَبَعَثَ اللّهُ النَّبِيِّينَ مُبَشِّرِينَ وَمُنذِرِينَ وَأَنزَلَ مَعَهُمُ الْكِتَابَ بِالْحَقِّ لِيَحْكُمَ بَيْنَ النَّاسِ فِيمَا اخْتَلَفُواْ فِيهِ وَمَا اخْتَلَفَ فِيهِ إِلاَّ الَّذِينَ أُوتُوهُ مِن بَعْدِ مَا جَاءتْهُمُ الْبَيِّنَاتُ بَغْيًا بَيْنَهُمْ ...

Mankind was one community and Allah sent Prophets with glad tidings and warnings, and with them He sent down the Scripture in truth to judge between people in matters wherein they differed. And only those to whom (the Scripture) was given differed concerning it, after clear proofs had come unto them, through hatred, one to another.

Ibn Jarir reported that Ibn Abbas said,

"There were ten generations between Adam and Nuh, all of them on the religion of Truth. They later disputed so Allah sent the Prophets as warners and bringers of glad tidings.'' He then said that this is how Abdullah read the Ayah:

كَانَ النَّاسُ أُمَّةً وَاحِدَةً فَاخْ تَلَفُوا

The people were one Ummah and they then disputed.

Al-Hakim recorded this in his Mustadrak and said, "Its chain of narrators is Sahih, but they (Al-Bukhari and Muslim) did not record it.''

Abu Jafar Razi reported that Abu Al-Aliyah said that Ubayy bin Ka`b read the Ayah as:

كَانَ النَّاسُ أُمَّةً وَاحِدَةً فَاخْتَلَفُوا فَبَعَثَ اللّهُ النَّبِيِّينَ مُبَشِّرِينَ وَمُنذِرِينَ

The people were one Ummah and they then disputed and Allah sent the Prophets as warners and bringers of glad tidings.

Abdur-Razzaq said that Ma`mar said that Qatadah said that;

Allah's statement: كَانَ النَّاسُ أُمَّةً وَاحِدَةً  (Mankind was one community) means; "They all had the guidance. Then: فَاخْتَلَفُوا فَبَعَثَ اللّهُ النَّبِيِّينَ  (They disputed and Allah sent Prophets). The first to be sent was Nuh."

Abdur-Razzaq reported that Abu Hurayrah commented on: فَهَدَى اللّهُ الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ لِمَا اخْتَلَفُواْ فِيهِ مِنَ الْحَقِّ بِإِذْنِهِ  (Then Allah by His leave guided those who believed to the truth of that wherein they differed), saying that the Prophet said:

نَحْنُ الآخِرُونَ الْأَوَّلُونَ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ، نَحْنُ أَوَّلُ النَّاسِ دُخُولًا الْجَنَّــةَ، بَيْدَ أَنَّهُم أُوتُوا الْكِتَابَ مِنْ قَبْلِنا وأُوتِينَاهُ مِن بَعْدِهِمْ، فَهَداَنا اللهُ لِمَا اخْتَلَفُوا فِيهِ مِنَ الْحَقَّ بِإِذْنِهِ،

فَهَذَا الْيَوْمُ الَّذِي اخْتَلَفُوا فِيهِ فَهَدَانَا اللهُ لَهُ، فَالنَّاسُ لَنَا فِيهِ تَبَعٌ، فَغدًا لِلْيَهُودِ، وَبَعْدَ غَدٍ لِلنَّصَارَى

We are the last (nation), but the first (foremost) on the Day of Resurrection. We are the first people to enter Paradise, although they (Jews and Christians) have been given the Book before us and we after them. Allah has guided us to the truth wherever they disputed over it. T

his is the day (Friday) that they disputed about, Allah guided us to it. So, the people follow us, as tomorrow is for the Jews and the day after is for the Christians.

Ibn Wahb related that Abdur-Rahman bin Zayd bin Aslam said that his father said about the Ayah: فَهَدَى اللّهُ الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ لِمَا اخْتَلَفُواْ فِيهِ مِنَ الْحَقِّ بِإِذْنِهِ  (Then Allah by His leave guided those who believed to the truth of that wherein they differed),

o "They disputed about the day of Congregation (Friday). The Jews made it Saturday while the Christians chose Sunday. Allah guided the Ummah of Muhammad to Friday.

o They also disputed about the true Qiblah. The Christians faced the east while the Jews faced Bayt Al-Maqdis. Allah guided the Ummah of Muhammad to the true Qiblah (Ka`bah in Makkah).

o They also disputed about the prayer, as some of them bow down, but do not prostrate, while others prostrate, but do not bow down. Some of them pray while talking and some while walking. Allah guided the Ummah of Muhammad to the truth.

o They also disputed about the fast; some of them fast during a part of the day, while others fast from certain types of foods. Allah guided the Ummah of Muhammad to the truth.

o They also disputed about Ibrahim. The Jews said, `He was a Jew,' while the Christians considered him Christian. Allah has made him a Haniyfan Musliman. Allah has guided the Ummah of Muhammad to the truth.

o They also disputed about `Isa. The Jews rejected him and accused his mother of a grave sin, while the Christians made him a god and the son of God. Allah made him by His Word and a spirit from (those He created) Him. Allah guided the Ummah of Muhammad to the truth.''

Allah then said:

... بِإِذْنِهِ ...

...by His leave,

According to Ibn Jarir meaning, `By His knowledge of them and by what He has directed and guided them to.'

Also:

... وَاللّهُ يَهْدِي مَن يَشَاء ...

And Allah guides whom He wills,

means from among His creation.

Allah said,

... إِلَى صِرَاطٍ مُّسْتَقِيمٍ ﴿٢١٣﴾

...to the straight way.

meaning, He commands the decision and the clear proof.

Al-Bukhari and Muslim reported that Aishah narrated that; when Allah's Messenger used to wake up at night to pray, he would say:

اللَّهُمَّ ربَّ جِبْرَائِيلَ وَمِيكَائِيلَ وَإِسْرَافِيلَ، فَاطِرَ السَّموَاتِ وَالْأَرْضِ، عَالِمَ الْغَيْبِ وَالشَّهَادَةِ، أَنْتَ تَحْكُمُ بيْنَ عِبَادِكَ فِيمَا كَانُوا فِيهِ يَخْتَلِفُونَ، اهْدِنِي لِمَا اخْتُلِفَ فِيهِ مِنَ الْحَقِّ بِإِذْنِكَ، إِنَّكَ تَهْدِي مَنْ تَشَاءُ إِلى صِرَاطٍ مُسْتَقِيم

O Allah, the Lord of (angels) Jibril, Mikhail and Israfil, Creator of the heavens and earth and Knower of the seen and the unseen. You judge between Your servants regarding what they have disputed in, so guide me to what have been the subject of dispute of the truth by Your leave. Indeed, You guide whom You will to the straight path.

A Du`a (supplication) reads:

اللَّهُمَّ أَرِنَا الْحَقَّ حَقًّا، وَارْزُقْنَا اتِّبَاعَهُ، وَأَرِنَا الْبَاطِلَ بَاطِلًا، وَارْزُقْنَا اجْتنِاَبَهُ، وَلَا تَجْعَلْهُ مُلْتَبِسًا عَلَيْنَا فَنَضِلَّ، وَاجْعَلْنَا لِلْمُتَّقِينَ إِمَامًا

O Allah! Show us the truth as truth, and bestow adherence to it on us. Show us the evil as evil, and make us stay away from it, and do not confuse us regarding the reality of evil so that we will not be led astray by it, and make us leaders for the believers.

214

أَمْ حَسِبْتُمْ أَن تَدْخُلُواْ الْجَنَّةَ وَلَمَّا يَأْتِكُم مَّثَلُ الَّذِينَ خَلَوْاْ مِن قَبْلِكُم

Or think you that you will enter Paradise without such (trials) as came to those who passed away before you!

مَّسَّتْهُمُ الْبَأْسَآءُ وَالضَّرَّآءُ وَزُلْزِلُواْ حَتَّى يَقُولَ الرَّسُولُ وَالَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ مَعَهُ مَتَى نَصْرُ اللَّهِ

They were afflicted with severe poverty and ailments and were so shaken that even the Messenger and those who believed along with him said, "When (will come) the help of Allah?''

أَلاَ إِنَّ نَصْرَ اللَّهِ قَرِيبٌ

Yes! Certainly, the help of Allah is near!)

Victory only comes after succeeding in the Trials

Allah said:

أَمْ حَسِبْتُمْ أَن تَدْخُلُواْ الْجَنَّةَ ...  

Or think you that you will enter Paradise,

before you are tested and tried just like the nations that came before you!

This is why Allah said:

... وَلَمَّا يَأْتِكُم مَّثَلُ الَّذِينَ خَلَوْاْ مِن قَبْلِكُم مَّسَّتْهُمُ الْبَأْسَاء وَالضَّرَّاء ...

...without such (trials) as came to those who passed away before you They were afflicted with severe poverty and ailments,

meaning, illnesses, pain, disasters and hardships.

Ibn Mas`ud, Ibn Abbas, Abu Al-Aliyah, Mujahid, Sa`id bin Jubayr, Murrah Al-Hamdani, Al-Hasan, Qatadah, Ad-Dahhak, Ar-Rabi, As-Suddi and Muqatil bin Hayyan said that;

الْبَأْسَاء  (Al-Ba'sa') means poverty.

Ibn Abbas said that وَالضَّرَّاء  (...and Ad-Darra') means ailments.

... وَزُلْزِلُواْ ...

and were so shaken,

for fear of the enemy, and were tested, and put to a tremendous trial.

An authentic Hadith narrated that Khabbab bin Al-Aratt said,

"We said, `O Messenger of Allah! Why do you not invoke Allah to support us Why do you not supplicate to Allah for us' He said:

إِنَّ مَنْ كَانَ قَبْلَكُمْ كَانَ أَحَدُهُمْ يُوضَعُ الْمِنْشَارُ عَلى مَفْرَقِ رَأْسِهِ فَيَخْلُصُ إِلى قَدَمَيْهِ لَا يَصْرِفُهُ ذَلِكَ عَنْ دِينِهِ، وَيُمْشَطُ بِأَمْشَاطِ الْحَدِيدِ مَا بَيْنَ لَحْمِهِ وَعَظْمِهِ، لَا يَصْرِفُهُ ذلِكَ عَنْ دِينِه

The saw would be placed on the middle of the head of one of those who were before you (believers) and he would be sawn until his feet, and he would be combed with iron combs between his skin and bones, yet that would not make him change his religion.

He then said:

وَاللهِ لَيُتِمَّنَّ اللهُ هَذَا الْأَمْرَ حَتَّى يَسِيرَ الرَّاكِبُ مِنْ صَنْعَاءَ إلى حَضْرَمَوْتَ، لَا يَخَافُ إِلَّا اللهَ وَالذِّئْبَ عَلى غَنَمِهِ، وَلَكِنَّــكُمْ قَوْمٌ تَسْتَعْجِلُون

By Allah! This matter (religion) will spread (or expand) by Allah until the traveler leaves San`a' to Hadramawt (both in Yemen, but at a great distance from each other) fearing only Allah and then the wolf for the sake of his sheep. You are just a hasty people.

And Allah said:

الم

أَحَسِبَ النَّاسُ أَن يُتْرَكُوا أَن يَقُولُوا آمَنَّا وَهُمْ لَا يُفْتَنُونَ

وَلَقَدْ فَتَنَّا الَّذِينَ مِن قَبْلِهِمْ فَلَيَعْلَمَنَّ اللَّهُ الَّذِينَ صَدَقُوا وَلَيَعْلَمَنَّ الْكَاذِبِينَ

Alif-Lam-Mim. Do people think that they will be left alone because they say: "We believe,'' and will not be tested And We indeed tested those who were before them. And Allah will certainly make (it) known (the truth of) those who are true, and will certainly make (it) known (the falsehood of) those who are liars. (29:1-3)

The Companions experienced tremendous trials during the battle of Al-Ahzab (the Confederates).

Allah said:

إِذْ جَآءُوكُمْ مِّن فَوْقِكُمْ وَمِنْ أَسْفَلَ مِنكُمْ وَإِذْ زَاغَتِ الاٌّبْصَـرُ وَبَلَغَتِ الْقُلُوبُ الْحَنَاجِرَ وَتَظُنُّونَ بِاللَّهِ الظُّنُونَاْ

هُنَالِكَ ابْتُلِىَ الْمُؤْمِنُونَ وَزُلْزِلُواْ زِلْزَالاً شَدِيداً

وَإِذْ يَقُولُ الْمُنَـفِقُونَ وَالَّذِينَ فِى قُلُوبِهِم مَّرَضٌ مَّا وَعَدَنَا اللَّهُ وَرَسُولُهُ إِلاَّ غُرُوراً

When they came upon you from above you and from below you, and when the eyes grew wild and the hearts reached to the throats, and you were harboring doubts about Allah. There, the believers were tried and shaken with a mighty shaking. And when the hypocrites and those in whose hearts is a disease (of doubts) said: "Allah and His Messenger promised us nothing but delusion!'' (33:10-12)

When Heraclius asked Abu Sufyan, "Did you fight him (Prophet Muhammad)?'' He said, "Yes.''

Heraclius said, "What was the outcome of warfare between you?''

Abu Sufyan said, "Sometimes we lose and sometimes he loses.''

He said, "Such is the case with Prophets, they are tested, but the final victory is theirs.''

Allah's statement:

... مَّثَلُ الَّذِينَ خَلَوْاْ مِن قَبْلِكُم ...

...without (such) (trials) as came to those who passed away before you,

meaning, their way of life.

Similarly, Allah said:

فَأَهْلَكْنَآ أَشَدَّ مِنْهُم بَطْشاً وَمَضَى مَثَلُ الاٌّوَّلِينَ

Then We destroyed men stronger (in power) than these ـ and the example of the ancients has passed away (before them)) (43: 8)

and,

... وَزُلْزِلُواْ حَتَّى يَقُولَ الرَّسُولُ وَالَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ مَعَهُ مَتَى نَصْرُ اللّهِ ...

...were so shaken that even the Messenger and those who believed along with him said, "When (will come) the help of Allah.''

They pleaded (to Allah) for victory against their enemies and invoked Him for aid and deliverance from their hardships and trials. Allah said:

... أَلا إِنَّ نَصْرَ اللّهِ قَرِيبٌ ﴿٢١٤﴾

Yes! Certainly, the help of Allah is near!

Allah said:

فَإِنَّ مَعَ الْعُسْرِ يُسْراً

إِنَّ مَعَ الْعُسْرِ يُسْراً

Verily, along with every hardship is relief. Verily, along with every hardship is relief. (94:5-6)

So just as there is hardship, its equal of relief will soon arrive. This is why Allah said: أَلا إِنَّ نَصْرَ اللّهِ قَرِيبٌ  (Yes! Certainly, the help of Allah is near)!

215

يَسْـَلُونَكَ مَاذَا يُنفِقُونَ

They ask you (O Muhammad) what they should spend.

قُلْ مَآ أَنفَقْتُم مِّنْ خَيْرٍ فَلِلْوَلِدَيْنِ وَالاٌّقْرَبِينَ وَالْيَتَـمَى وَالْمَسَـكِينَ وَابْنِ السَّبِيلِ وَمَا تَفْعَلُواْ مِنْ خَيْرٍ فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ بِهِ عَلِيمٌ

Say: "Whatever you spend of good must be for parents and kindred and orphans and Al-Masakin (the poor) and the wayfarer, and whatever you do of good deeds, truly, Allah knows it well.''

Who deserves the Nafaqah (Spending or Charity)

Allah says;

يَسْأَلُونَكَ مَاذَا يُنفِقُونَ ...  

They ask you (O Muhammad) what they should spend.

Muqatil bin Hayyan said that; this Ayah was revealed about the voluntary charity.

Ibn Abbas and Mujahid have stated that the Ayah means, `They ask you (O Muhammad) how they should spend.'

So, Allah explained it for them, saying:

... قُلْ مَا أَنفَقْتُم مِّنْ خَيْرٍ فَلِلْوَالِدَيْنِ وَالأَقْرَبِينَ وَالْيَتَامَى وَالْمَسَاكِينِ وَابْنِ السَّبِيلِ ...

Say: "Whatever you spend of good must be for parents and kindred and orphans and Al-Masakin and the wayfarer,''

meaning, spend it on these categories or areas.

Similarly, a Hadith states that; those who deserve one's generosity the most, are:

أُمَّكَ وَأَبَاكَ وَأُخْتَكَ وَأَخَاكَ ثُمَّ أَدْنَاكَ أَدْنَاك

Your mother, father, sister, brother, the closest and then the farthest (relatives).

Maymun bin Mihran once recited this Ayah and commented,

"These are the areas of spending. Allah did not mention among them the drums, pipe, wooden pictures, or the curtains that cover the walls.''

Next, Allah said:

... وَمَا تَفْعَلُواْ مِنْ خَيْرٍ فَإِنَّ اللّهَ بِهِ عَلِيمٌ ﴿٢١٥﴾

...and whatever you do of good deeds, truly, Allah knows it well.

meaning, whatever you perform of good works, Allah knows them and He will reward you for them in the best manner, no one will be dealt with unjustly, even the weight of an atom.

216

كُتِبَ عَلَيْكُمُ الْقِتَالُ وَهُوَ كُرْهٌ لَّكُمْ وَعَسَى أَن تَكْرَهُواْ شَيْئًا وَهُوَ خَيْرٌ لَّكُمْ وَعَسَى أَن تُحِبُّواْ شَيْئًا وَهُوَ شَرٌّ لَّكُمْ وَاللَّهُ يَعْلَمُ وَأَنتُمْ لاَ تَعْلَمُونَ

Fighting is ordained for you (Muslims) though you dislike it, and it may be that you dislike a thing which is good for you and that you like a thing which is bad for you. Allah knows but you do not know.

Jihad is made Obligatory

Allah says;

كُتِبَ عَلَيْكُمُ الْقِتَالُ ...  

Fighting is ordained for you (Muslims),

In this Ayah, Allah made it obligatory for the Muslims to fight in Jihad against the evil of the enemy who transgress against Islam.

Az-Zuhri said,

"Jihad is required from every person, whether he actually joins the fighting or remains behind. Whoever remains behind is required to give support, if support is warranted; to provide aid, if aid is needed; and to march forth, if he is commanded to do so. If he is not needed, then he remains behind.''

It is reported in the Sahih:

مَنْ مَاتَ وَلَمْ يَغْزُ وَلَمْ يُحَدِّثْ نَفْسَهُ بِالْغَزْوِ، مَاتَ مِيتَةً جَاهِلِيَّــة

Whoever dies but neither fought (i.e., in Allah's cause), nor sincerely considered fighting, will die a death of Jahiliyyah (pre-Islamic era of ignorance).

On the day of Al-Fath (when he conquered Makkah), the Prophet said:

لَا هِجْرَةَ بَعْدَ الْفَتْحِ وَلكِنْ جِهَادٌ وَنِيَّةٌ، وَإِذَا اسْتُنْفِرْتُمْ فَانْفِرُوا

There is no Hijrah (migration from Makkah to Al-Madinah) after the victory, but only Jihad and good intention. If you were required to march forth, then march forth.

Allah's statement:

... وَهُوَ كُرْهٌ لَّكُمْ ...

...though you dislike it,

means, `Fighting is difficult and heavy on your hearts.'

Indeed, fighting is as the Ayah describes it, as it includes being killed, wounded, striving against the enemies and enduring the hardship of travel.

Allah then said:

... وَعَسَى أَن تَكْرَهُواْ شَيْئًا وَهُوَ خَيْرٌ لَّكُمْ ...

...and it may be that you dislike a thing which is good for you,

meaning, fighting is followed by victory, dominance over the enemy, taking over their lands, money and offspring.

Allah continues:

... وَعَسَى أَن تُحِبُّواْ شَيْئًا وَهُوَ شَرٌّ لَّكُمْ ...

...and that you like a thing which is bad for you.

This Ayah is general in meaning.

Hence, one might covet something, yet in reality it is not good or beneficial for him, such as refraining from joining the Jihad, for it might lead to the enemy taking over the land and the government.

Then, Allah said:

... وَاللّهُ يَعْلَمُ وَأَنتُمْ لاَ تَعْلَمُونَ ﴿٢١٦﴾

Allah knows, but you do not know.

meaning, He has better knowledge than you of how things will turn out to be in the end, and of what benefits you in this earthly life and the Hereafter. Hence, obey Him and adhere to His commands, so that you may acquire the true guidance.

217

يَسْـَلُونَكَ عَنِ الشَّهْرِ الْحَرَامِ قِتَالٍ فِيهِ

They ask you concerning fighting in the Sacred Months.

قُلْ قِتَالٌ فِيهِ كَبِيرٌ وَصَدٌّ عَن سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ وَكُفْرٌ بِهِ وَالْمَسْجِدِ الْحَرَامِ وَإِخْرَاجُ أَهْلِهِ مِنْهُ أَكْبَرُ عِندَ اللَّهِ وَالْفِتْنَةُ أَكْبَرُ مِنَ الْقَتْلِ

Say, "Fighting therein is a great (transgression) but a greater (transgression) with Allah is to prevent mankind from following the way of Allah, to disbelieve in Him, to prevent access to Al-Masjid Al-Haram (at Makkah), and to drive out its inhabitants, and Al-Fitnah is worse than killing.''

وَلاَ يَزَالُونَ يُقَـتِلُونَكُمْ حَتَّى يَرُدُّوكُمْ عَن دِينِكُمْ إِنِ اسْتَطَاعُواْ

And they will never cease fighting you until they turn you back from your religion (Islamic Monotheism) if they can.

وَمَن يَرْتَدِدْ مِنكُمْ عَن دِينِهِ فَيَمُتْ وَهُوَ كَافِرٌ فَأُوْلـئِكَ حَبِطَتْ أَعْمَـلُهُمْ فِي الدُّنْيَا وَالاٌّخِرَةِ وَأُوْلـئِكَ أَصْحَـبُ النَّارِ هُمْ فِيهَا خَـلِدُونَ

And whosoever of you turns back from his religion and dies as a disbeliever, then his deeds will be lost in this life and in the Hereafter, and they will be the dwellers of the Fire. They will abide therein forever.

218

إِنَّ الَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ وَالَّذِينَ هَاجَرُواْ وَجَـهَدُواْ فِي سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ أُوْلـئِكَ يَرْجُونَ رَحْمَةَ اللَّهِ وَاللَّهُ غَفُورٌ رَّحِيمٌ

Verily, those who have believed, and those who have emigrated (for Allah's religion) and have striven hard in the way of Allah, all these hope for Allah's mercy. And Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most-Merciful.

The Nakhlah Military Maneuvers, and the Ruling on Fighting during the Sacred Months

Ibn Abu Hatim reported that Jundub bin Abdullah said:

Allah's Messenger assembled a group of men under the command of Abu Ubaydah bin Jarrah. When he was about to march, he started crying for the thought of missing Allah's Messenger. Consequently, the Messenger relieved Abu Ubaydah from command, appointed Abdullah bin Jahsh instead, gave him some written instructions and commanded him not to read the instructions until he reached such and such area. He also said to Abdullah:

لَا تُكْرِهَنَّ أَحَدًا عَلَى السَّيْرِ مَعَكَ مِنْ أَصْحَابِك

Do not compel any of your men to continue marching with you thereafter.

When Abdullah read the instructions, he recited Istirja` (saying, `Truly! to Allah we belong and truly, to Him we shall return'; (2:156)) and said, "I hear and obey Allah and His Messenger.'' He then told his companions the story and read the instructions to them, and two men went back while the rest remained. Soon after, they found Ibn Hadrami (one of the disbelievers of Quraysh) and killed him not knowing that that day was in Rajab or Jumadi (where Rajab is the Sacred Month).

The polytheists said to the Muslims, "You have committed murder in the Sacred Month.''

Allah then revealed: يَسْأَلُونَكَ عَنِ الشَّهْرِ الْحَرَامِ قِتَالٍ فِيهِ قُلْ قِتَالٌ فِيهِ كَبِيرٌ  (They ask you concerning fighting in the Sacred Months. Say, "Fighting therein is a great (transgression)...'').

Abdul-Malik bin Hisham, who compiled the Sirah (life story of the Prophet), related that Ziyad bin Abdullah Bakka'i said that Muhammad bin Ishaq bin Yasar Al-Madani wrote in his book on the Sirah,

"Allah's Messenger sent Abdullah bin Jahsh bin Riyab Al-Asadi in Rajab, after he (the Prophet) came back from the first battle of Badr. The Prophet sent eight people with him, all from among the Muhajirun and none from the Ansar.

He also gave him some written instructions and ordered him not to read them until he marched for two days. Abdullah should then read the instructions and march to implement them, but should not force any of those who were with him to accompany him.

The companions of Abdullah bin Jahsh were all from the Muhajirun,

o from the tribe of Banu Abd Shams bin Abd Manaf, there was Abu Hudhayfah bin Utbah bin Rabiah bin Abd Shams bin Abd Manaf.

o From their allies, there was Abdullah bin Jahsh, who was the commander of the army unit,

o and Ukkashah bin Mihsan from the tribe of Banu Asad bin Khuzaymah.

o From the tribe of Banu Nawfal bin Abd Manaf, there was Utbah bin Ghazwan bin Jabir, one of their allies.

o From the tribe of Banu Zuhrah bin Kilab, there was Sa`d bin Abu Waqqas.

o From Banu Ka`b, there were their allies: Adi bin Amr bin Ar-Rabiah not from the tribe of Ibn Wa'il;

o Waqid bin Abdullah bin Abd Manaf bin Arin bin Thalabah bin Yarbu from Banu Tamim;

o and Khalid bin Bukair from the tribe of Banu Sa`d bin Layth,

o Suhayl bin Bayda' from Banu Al-Harith bin Fihr was also among them.

When Abdullah bin Jahsh marched for two days, he opened and read the (Prophet's) instructions, "When you read these instructions, march until you set camp at Nakhlah between Makkah and At-Ta'if. There, watch the movements of the caravan of Quraysh and collect news about them for us.''

When Abdullah bin Jahsh read the document, he said, "I hear and obey.''

He then said to his companions, "Allah's Messenger has commanded me to march forth to Nakhlah to watch the movements of the caravan of Quraysh and to inform him about their news. He has prohibited me from forcing any of you (to go with me). So, those who seek martyrdom, they should march with me. Those who dislike the idea of martyrdom, let them turn back. Surely, I will implement the command of Allah's Messenger.''

He and his companions continued without any of them turning back.

Abdullah entered the Hijaz area (western Arabia) until he reached an area called Buhran, close to Furu. There, Sa`d bin Abu Waqqas and Utbah bin Ghazwan lost the camel that they were riding in turns, and they went back to search for it while Abdullah bin Jahsh and the rest of his companions continued until they reached Nakhlah.

Then, a caravan belonging to the Quraysh passed by carrying raisins, food stuff and some trade items for the Quraysh.

Amr bin Hadrami, whose name was Abdullah bin Abbad, was in the caravan, as well as Uthman bin Abdullah bin Al-Mughirah and his brother Nawfal bin Abdullah from the tribe of Makhzum, and Al-Hakam bin Kaysan, a freed slave of Hisham bin Al-Mughirah. When they saw the Companions they were frightened, but when they saw Ukkashah bin Mihsan their fears subsided, since his head was shaved. They said, "These people seek the Umrah, so there is no need to fear them.''

The Companions conferred among themselves. That day was the last day in the (sacred) month of Rajab. They said to each other, "By Allah! If you let them pass, they will soon enter the Sacred Area and take refuge in it from you. If you kill them, you will kill them during the Sacred Month.''

They at first hesitated and did not like to attack them. They then began encouraging themselves and decided to kill whomever they could among the disbelievers and to confiscate whatever they had.

Hence, Waqid bin Abdullah At-Tamimi shot an arrow at Amr bin Al-Hadrami and killed him. Uthman bin Abdullah and Al-Hakam bin Kaysan gave themselves up, while Nawfal bin Abdullah was able to outrun them in flight.

Later on, Abdullah bin Jahsh and his companions went back to Allah's Messenger in Al-Madinah with the caravan and the two prisoners.

Ibn Ishaq went on:

I was told that some members of the family of Abdullah bin Jahsh said that Abdullah said to his companions: "Allah's Messenger will have one-fifth of what we have confiscated.''

This occurred before Allah required one-fifth for His Messenger from the war booty. So, Abdullah designated one-fifth of the caravan for Allah's Messenger and divided the rest among his companions.

Ibn Ishaq also stated that at first, when the Sariyah came back to Allah's Messenger, he said to them:

مَا أَمَرْتُكُمْ بِقِتَالٍ فِي الشَّهْرِ الْحَرَام

I have not commanded you to conduct warfare during the Sacred Month.

He left the caravan and the two prisoners alone and did not take any share of the war booty.

When Allah's Messenger did that, the soldiers from the attack were concerned and felt that they were destroyed, and their Muslim brethren criticized them for what they did.

The Quraysh said that Muhammad and his Companions violated the sanctity of the Sacred Month and shed blood, confiscated property and took prisoners during it. Those who refuted them among the Muslims who remained in Makkah replied that the Muslims had done that during the month of Shaban (which is not a sacred month).

Meanwhile, the Jews were pleased about what happened to Allah's Messenger. They said, `Amr bin Hadrami was killed by Waqid bin Abdullah:

`Amr, means the war has started, Hadrami means the war has come, as for Waqid (bin Abdullah): the war has raged (using some of the literal meanings of these names to support their fortune-telling!).''

But, Allah made all that turn against them.

The people continued talking about this matter, then Allah revealed to His Messenger:

يَسْأَلُونَكَ عَنِ الشَّهْرِ الْحَرَامِ قِتَالٍ فِيهِ قُلْ قِتَالٌ فِيهِ كَبِيرٌ وَصَدٌّ عَن سَبِيلِ اللّهِ وَكُفْرٌ بِهِ وَالْمَسْجِدِ الْحَرَامِ وَإِخْرَاجُ أَهْلِهِ مِنْهُ أَكْبَرُ عِندَ اللّهِ وَالْفِتْنَةُ أَكْبَرُ مِنَ الْقَتْل...

They ask you concerning fighting in the Sacred Months.

Say, "Fighting therein is a great (transgression) but a greater (transgression) with Allah is to prevent mankind from following the way of Allah, to disbelieve in Him, to prevent access to Al-Masjid Al-Haram (at Makkah), and to drive out its inhabitants, and Al-Fitnah is worse than killing.

This Ayah means,

`If you had killed during the Sacred Month, they (disbelievers of Quraysh) have hindered you from the path of Allah and disbelieved in it. They also prevented you from entering the Sacred Mosque, and expelled you from it, while you are its people, أَكْبَرُ عِندَ اللّهِ  (...a greater (transgression) with Allah) than killing whom you killed among them. Also: وَالْفِتْنَةُ أَكْبَرُ مِنَ الْقَتْل...  (...and Al-Fitnah is worse than killing) means, trying to force the Muslims to revert from their religion and re-embrace Kufr after they had believed, is worse with Allah than killing.'

Allah said:

...ِ وَلاَ يَزَالُونَ يُقَاتِلُونَكُمْ حَتَّىَ يَرُدُّوكُمْ عَن دِينِكُمْ إِنِ اسْتَطَاعُواْ ...

And they will never cease fighting you until they turn you back from your religion (Islamic Monotheism) if they can.

So, they will go on fighting you with unrelenting viciousness.

وَمَن يَرْتَدِدْ مِنكُمْ عَن دِينِهِ فَيَمُتْ وَهُوَ كَافِرٌ فَأُوْلـئِكَ حَبِطَتْ أَعْمَـلُهُمْ فِي الدُّنْيَا وَالاٌّخِرَةِ وَأُوْلـئِكَ أَصْحَـبُ النَّارِ هُمْ فِيهَا خَـلِدُونَ

And whosoever of you turns back from his religion and dies as a disbeliever, then his deeds will be lost in this life and in the Hereafter, and they will be the dwellers of the Fire. They will abide therein forever.

Ibn Ishaq went on:

When the Qur'an touched this subject and Allah brought relief to the Muslims instead of the sadness that had befallen them, Allah's Messenger took possession of the caravan and the two prisoners.

The Quraysh offered to ransom the two prisoners, Uthman bin Abdullah and Hakam bin Kaysan.

Allah's Messenger said:

لَا نَفْدِيكُمُوهُمَا حَتَّى يَقْدَمَ صَاحِبَانَا

We will not accept your ransom until our two companions return safely.

meaning Sa`d bin Abu Waqqas and Utbah bin Ghazwan, "For we fear for their safety with you. If you kill them, we will kill your people.''

Later on, Sa`d and Utbah returned safely and Allah's Messenger accepted the Quraysh's ransom for their prisoners.

As for Al-Hakam bin Kaysan, he became Muslim and his Islam strengthened. He remained with Allah's Messenger until he was martyred during the incident at Bir Ma`unah (when the Prophet sent seventy Companions to Najd to teach them Islam, but Banu Sulaim killed them all except two).

As for Uthman bin Abdullah, he went back to Makkah and died there as a disbeliever.

Ibn Ishaq went on:

When Abdullah bin Jahsh and his companions were relieved from their depressing thoughts after the Qur'an was revealed about this subject, they sought the reward of the fighters (in Allah's way). They said, "O Messenger of Allah! We wish that this incident be considered a battle for us, so that we gain the rewards of the Mujahidin.''

Then, Allah revealed:

إِنَّ الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ وَالَّذِينَ هَاجَرُواْ وَجَاهَدُواْ فِي سَبِيلِ اللّهِ أُوْلَـئِكَ يَرْجُونَ رَحْمَتَ اللّهِ وَاللّهُ غَفُورٌ رَّحِيمٌ ﴿٢١٨﴾  

Verily, those who have believed, and those who have emigrated (for Allah's religion) and have striven hard in the way of Allah, all these hope for Allah's mercy. And Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.

Hence, Allah has greatly elevated their hopes of gaining what they had wished for.

219

يَسْـئَلُونَكَ عَنِ الْخَمْرِ وَالْمَيْسِرِ

They ask you (O Muhammad) concerning alcoholic drink and gambling.

قُلْ فِيهِمَآ إِثْمٌ كَبِيرٌ وَمَنَـفِعُ لِلنَّاسِ وَإِثْمُهُمَآ أَكْبَرُ مِن نَّفْعِهِمَا

Say: "In them is a great sin, and (some) benefits for men, but the sin of them is greater than their benefit.''

وَيَسْـئَلُونَكَ مَاذَا يُنفِقُونَ

And they ask you what they ought to spend.

قُلِ الْعَفْوَ

Say: "That which is (spare) beyond your needs.''

كَذلِكَ يُبيّنُ اللَّهُ لَكُمُ الآيَـتِ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَتَفَكَّرُونَ

Thus Allah makes clear to you His Laws in order that you may give thought.

220

فِى الدُّنْيَا وَالاْخِرَةِ

In (to) this worldly life and in the Hereafter.

وَيَسْـئَلُونَكَ عَنِ الْيَتَـمَى

And they ask you concerning orphans.

قُلْ إِصْلاَحٌ لَّهُمْ خَيْرٌ وَإِن تُخَالِطُوهُمْ فَإِخْونُكُمْ

Say: "The best thing is to work honestly in their property, and if you mix your affairs with theirs, then they are your brothers.

وَاللَّهُ يَعْلَمُ الْمُفْسِدَ مِنَ الْمُصْلِحِ وَلَوْ شَآء اللَّهُ لاعْنَتَكُمْ إِنَّ اللَّهَ عَزِيزٌ حَكِيمٌ

And Allah knows (the one) who means mischief (e.g., to swallow their property) from (the one) who means good (e.g., to save their property). And if Allah had wished, He could have put you into difficulties. Truly, Allah is All-Mighty, All-Wise.''

The Gradual Prohibition of Khamr (Alcoholic Drink)

Allah says;

يَسْأَلُونَكَ عَنِ الْخَمْرِ وَالْمَيْسِرِ قُلْ فِيهِمَا إِثْمٌ كَبِيرٌ وَمَنَافِعُ لِلنَّاسِ وَإِثْمُهُمَآ أَكْبَرُ مِن نَّفْعِهِمَا ...

They ask you (O Muhammad) concerning alcoholic drink and gambling.

Say: "In them is a great sin, and (some) benefits for men, but the sin of them is greater than their benefit.''

Imam Ahmad recorded that Abu Maysarah said that;

Umar once said, "O Allah! Give us a clear ruling regarding Al-Khamr!'' Allah sent down the Ayah of Surah Al-Baqarah: يَسْأَلُونَكَ عَنِ الْخَمْرِ وَالْمَيْسِرِ قُلْ فِيهِمَا إِثْمٌ كَبِيرٌ  (They ask you (O Muhammad) concerning alcoholic drink and gambling. Say: "In them is a great sin...). Umar was then summoned and the Ayah was recited to him.

Yet, he still said, "O Allah! Give us a clear ruling regarding Al-Khamr.''

Then, this Ayah that is in Surah An-Nisa' was revealed: يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ لاَ تَقْرَبُواْ الصَّلاَةَ وَأَنتُمْ سُكَارَى (O you who believe! Approach not As-Salah (the prayer) when you are in a drunken state), (4:43).

Then, when the prayer was called for, a person used to herald on behalf of Allah's Messenger, "No drunk person should attend the prayer.''

Umar was summoned again and the Ayah was recited to him. Yet, he still said, "O Allah! Give us a clear ruling regarding Al-Khamr.''

Then, the Ayah (5:91) that is in Surah Al-Ma'idah was revealed, Umar was again summoned and the Ayah was recited to him. When he reached: فَهَلْ أَنتُم مُّنتَهُونَ  (So, will you not then abstain) (5:91) he said, "We did abstain, we did abstain.''

This is also the narration that Abu Dawud, At-Tirmidhi and An-Nasa'i collected in their books.

Ali bin Al-Madini and At-Tirmidhi said that the chain of narrators for this Hadith is sound and authentic. We will mention this Hadith again along with what Imam Ahmad collected by Abu Hurayrah Allah's saying in Surah Al-Ma'idah:

إِنَّمَا الْخَمْرُ وَالْمَيْسِرُ وَالأَنصَابُ وَالأَزْلاَمُ رِجْسٌ مِّنْ عَمَلِ الشَّيْطَانِ فَاجْتَنِبُوهُ لَعَلَّكُمْ تُفْلِحُونَ

Intoxicants and gambling, and Al-Ansab, and Al-Azlam are an abomination of Satan's handiwork. So avoid (strictly all) that (abomination) in order that you may be successful. (5:90)

Allah said:

يَسْأَلُونَكَ عَنِ الْخَمْرِ وَالْمَيْسِرِ ...

They ask you (O Muhammad) concerning alcoholic drinks and gambling.

As for Al-Khamr, Umar bin Khattab, the Leader of the faithful, used to say, "It includes all what intoxicates the mind.''

We will also mention this statement in the explanation of Surah Al-Ma'idah, along with the topic of gambling.

Allah said:

... قُلْ فِيهِمَا إِثْمٌ كَبِيرٌ وَمَنَافِعُ لِلنَّاسِ ...

Say: In them is a great sin, and (some) benefits for men.

As for the harm that the Khamr and gambling cause, it effects the religion.

As for their benefit, it is material, including benefit for the body, digesting the food, getting rid of the excrements, sharpening the mind, bringing about a joyous sensation and financially benefiting from their sale.

Also, (their benefit includes) earnings through gambling that one uses to spend on his family and on himself. Yet, these benefits are outweighed by the clear harm that they cause which affects the mind and the religion.

This is why Allah said:

... وَإِثْمُهُمَآ أَكْبَرُ مِن نَّفْعِهِمَا ...

...but the sin of them is greater than their benefit.

This Ayah was the beginning of the process of prohibiting Khamr, not explicitly, but it only implied this meaning. So when this Ayah was recited to Umar, he still said, "O Allah! Give us a clear ruling regarding Al-Khamr.''

Soon after, Allah sent down a clear prohibition of Khamr in Surah Al-Ma'idah:

يَـأَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ إِنَّمَا الْخَمْرُ وَالْمَيْسِرُ وَالاٌّنصَابُ وَالاٌّزْلاَمُ رِجْسٌ مِّنْ عَمَلِ الشَّيْطَـنِ فَاجْتَنِبُوهُ لَعَلَّكُمْ تُفْلِحُونَ

إِنَّمَا يُرِيدُ الشَّيْطَـنُ أَن يُوقِعَ بَيْنَكُمُ الْعَدَاوَةَ وَالْبَغْضَآءَ فِى الْخَمْرِ وَالْمَيْسِرِ وَيَصُدَّكُمْ عَن ذِكْرِ اللَّهِ وَعَنِ الصَّلَوةِ فَهَلْ أَنْتُمْ مُّنتَهُونَ

O you who believe! Intoxicants (all kinds of alcoholic drinks), and gambling, and Al-Ansab, and Al-Azlam are an abomination of Shaytan's handiwork. So avoid (strictly all) that (abomination) in order that you may be successful.

Shaytan wants only to excite enmity and hatred between you with intoxicants (alcoholic drinks) and gambling, and hinder you from the remembrance of Allah and from As-Salah (the prayer). So, will you not then abstain! (5:90-91)

We will mention this subject, by the will of Allah, when we explain Surah Al-Ma'idah.

Ibn Umar, Ash-Sha`bi, Mujahid, Qatadah, Ar-Rabi bin Anas and Abdur-Rahman bin Aslam stated that the first Ayah revealed about Khamr was:

يَسْأَلُونَكَ عَنِ الْخَمْرِ وَالْمَيْسِرِ قُلْ فِيهِمَا إِثْمٌ كَبِيرٌ

They ask you about Khamr and gambling. Say: "In them there is great sin.''

Then, the Ayah in Surah An-Nisa was revealed (on this subject) and then the Ayah in Surah Al-Ma'idah which prohibited Khamr.

Spending whatever One could spare of his Money on Charity

Allah said:

... وَيَسْأَلُونَكَ مَاذَا يُنفِقُونَ قُلِ الْعَفْوَ ...

And they ask you what they ought to spend.

Say: "That which is (spare) beyond your needs.''

Al-Hakam said that Miqsam said that Ibn Abbas said that this Ayah means, whatever you can spare above the needs of your family.

This is also the opinion of Ibn Umar, Mujahid, Ata, Ikrimah, Sa`id bin Jubayr, Muhammad bin Ka`b, Al-Hasan, Qatadah, Al-Qasim, Salim, Ata Al-Khurasani and Ar-Rabi bin Anas.

Ibn Jarir related that Abu Hurayrah said that a man said, "O Messenger of Allah! I have a Dinar (a currency).''

The Prophet said:

أَنْفِقْهُ عَلى نَفْسِك

Spend it you on yourself.

He said, "I have another Dinar.''

He said:

أَنْفِقْهُ عَلى أَهْلِك

Spend it on your wife.

He said, "I have another Dinar.''

He said:

أَنْفِقْهُ عَلى وَلَدِك

Spend it on your offspring.

He said, "I have another Dinar.''

He said:

فَأَنْتَ أَبْصَر

You have better knowledge (meaning how and where to spend it in charity).

Muslim also recorded this Hadith in his Sahih.

Muslim recorded that Jabir said that Allah's Messenger said to a man:

ابْدَأْ بِنَفْسِكَ فَتَصَدَّقْ عَلَيْهَا، فَإِنْ فَضَلَ شَيْءٌ فَلِأَهْلِكَ، فَإِنْ فَضَلَ شَيْءٌ عَنْ أَهْلِكَ فَلِذِي قَرَابَتِكَ، فَإِنْ فَضَلَ عَنْ ذِي قَرَابَتِكَ شَيْءٌ فَهكَذَا وَهكَذَا

Start with yourself and grant it some charity. If anything remains, then spend it on your family. If anything remains, then spend it on your relatives. If anything remains, then spend it like this and like that (i.e., on various charitable purposes).

A Hadith states:

ابْنَ آدَمَ إِنَّكَ أَنْ تَبْذُلَ الْفَضْلَ خَيْرٌ لَكَ، وَأَنْ تُمْسِكَهُ شَرٌّ لَكَ، وَلَا تُلَامُ عَلى كَفَاف

O son of Adam! If you spend whatever you can spare, it would be better for you; but if you keep it, it would be worse for you. You shall not be blamed for whatever is barely sufficient.

Allah said:

... كَذَلِكَ يُبيِّنُ اللّهُ لَكُمُ الآيَاتِ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَتَفَكَّرُونَ ﴿٢١٩﴾

Thus Allah makes clear to you His Ayat in order that you may give thought. In (to) this worldly life and in the Hereafter.

meaning, just as He stated and explained these commandments for you, He also explains the rest of His Ayat regarding the commandments and His promises and warnings, so that you might give thought in this life and the Hereafter.

Ali bin Abu Talhah said that Ibn Abbas commented,

"Meaning about the imminent demise and the brevity of this life, and the imminent commencement of the Hereafter and its continuity.''

Maintaining the Orphan's Property

Allah said:

... وَيَسْأَلُونَكَ عَنِ الْيَتَامَى قُلْ إِصْلاَحٌ لَّهُمْ خَيْرٌ وَإِنْ تُخَالِطُوهُمْ فَإِخْوَانُكُمْ وَاللّهُ يَعْلَمُ الْمُفْسِدَ مِنَ الْمُصْلِحِ وَلَوْ شَاء اللّهُ لأعْنَتَكُمْ ...

And they ask you concerning orphans.

Say: "The best thing is to work honestly in their property, and if you mix your affairs with theirs, then they are your brothers. And Allah knows him who means mischief (e.g., to swallow their property) from him who means good (e.g., to save their property). And if Allah had wished, He could have put you into difficulties.

Ibn Jarir reported that Ibn Abbas said,

"When the Ayat: وَلاَ تَقْرَبُواْ مَالَ الْيَتِيمِ إِلاَّ بِالَّتِي هِيَ أَحْسَنُ (And come not near to the orphan's property, except to improve it), (6:152) and إِنَّ الَّذِينَ يَأْكُلُونَ أَمْوَالَ الْيَتَامَى ظُلْمًا إِنَّمَا يَأْكُلُونَ فِي بُطُونِهِمْ نَارًا وَسَيَصْلَوْنَ سَعِيرًا (Verily, those who unjustly eat up the property of orphans, they eat up only fire into their bellies, and they will be burnt in the blazing Fire!) (4:10) were revealed, those who took care of some orphans, separated their food and drink from the orphans' food and drink. When some of the orphans' food and drink remained, they would keep it for them until they eat it or otherwise get spoiled.

This situation was difficult for them and they mentioned this subject to Allah's Messenger.

... وَيَسْأَلُونَكَ عَنِ الْيَتَامَى قُلْ إِصْلاَحٌ لَّهُمْ خَيْرٌ وَإِنْ تُخَالِطُوهُمْ فَإِخْوَانُكُمْ ...

And they ask you concerning orphans. Say: "The best thing is to work honestly in their property, and if you mix your affairs with theirs, then they are your brothers.

Hence, they joined their food and drink with the food and drink of the orphans.''

This Hadith was also collected by Abu Dawud, An-Nasa'i and Al-Hakim in his Mustadrak.

Several others said similarly about the circumstances surrounding the revelation of the Ayah (2:220), including Mujahid, Ata, Ash-Sha`bi, Ibn Abu Layla, Qatadah and others among the Salaf and those after them.

Ibn Jarir reported that Aishah said, "I dislike that an orphan's money be under my care, unless I mix my food with his food and my drink with his drink.''

Allah said:

... قُلْ إِصْلاَحٌ لَّهُمْ خَيْرٌ ...

Say: The best thing is to work honestly in their property.

meaning, on the one hand (i.e., this is required in any case).

Allah then said:

... وَإِنْ تُخَالِطُوهُمْ فَإِخْوَانُكُمْ ...

...and if you mix your affairs with theirs, then they are your brothers.

meaning, there is no harm if you mix your food and drink with their food and drink, since they are your brothers in the religion.

This is why Allah said afterwards:

... وَاللّهُ يَعْلَمُ الْمُفْسِدَ مِنَ الْمُصْلِحِ ...

And Allah knows (the one) who means mischief (e.g., to swallow their property) from (the one) who means good (e.g., to save their property).

meaning, He knows those whose intent is to cause mischief or righteousness.

He also said:

... وَلَوْ شَاء اللّهُ لأعْنَتَكُمْ إِنَّ اللّهَ عَزِيزٌ حَكِيمٌ ﴿٢٢٠﴾

And if Allah had wished, He could have put you into difficulties. Truly, Allah is All-Mighty, All-Wise.

meaning, if Allah wills, He will make this matter difficult for you. But, He made it easy for you, and allowed you to mix your affairs with the orphans' affairs in a way that is better.

Similarly, Allah said:

وَلاَ تَقْرَبُواْ مَالَ الْيَتِيمِ إِلاَّ بِالَّتِى هِىَ أَحْسَنُ

And come not near to the orphan's property, except to improve it. (6:152)

Allah has thus allowed spending from the orphan's estate by its executor, in reasonable proportions, on the condition that he has the intention to compensate the orphan later on, when he can afford it. We will mention about it in detail in Surah An-Nisa by Allah's will.

221

وَلاَ تَنْكِحُواْ الْمُشْرِكَـتِ حَتَّى يُؤْمِنَّ

And do not marry Al-Mushrikat (idolatresses) till they believe (worship Allah Alone).

وَلأَمَةٌ مُّؤْمِنَةٌ خَيْرٌ مِّن مُّشْرِكَةٍ وَلَوْ أَعْجَبَتْكُمْ

And indeed a slave woman who believes is better than a (free) Mushrikah (idolatress), even though she pleases you.

وَلاَ تُنكِحُواْ الْمُشِرِكِينَ حَتَّى يُؤْمِنُواْ وَلَعَبْدٌ مُّؤْمِنٌ خَيْرٌ مِّن مُّشْرِكٍ وَلَوْ أَعْجَبَكُمْ

And give not (your daughters) in marriage to Al-Mushrikin till they believe (in Allah Alone) and verily, a believing servant is better than a (free) Mushrik (idolator), even though he pleases you.

أُوْلَـئِكَ يَدْعُونَ إِلَى النَّارِ وَاللَّهُ يَدْعُواْ إِلَى الْجَنَّةِ وَالْمَغْفِرَةِ بِإِذْنِهِ وَيُبَيِّنُ آيَـتِهِ لِلنَّاسِ لَعَلَّهُمْ يَتَذَكَّرُونَ

Those (Mushrikin) invite you to the Fire, but Allah invites (you) to Paradise and forgiveness by His leave, and makes His Ayat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) clear to mankind that they may remember.

The Prohibition of marrying Mushrik Men and Women

Allah says;

وَلاَ تَنكِحُواْ الْمُشْرِكَاتِ حَتَّى يُؤْمِنَّ ...  

And do not marry Al-Mushrikat (idolatresses) till they believe (worship Allah Alone).

Allah prohibited the believers from marrying Mushrik women who worship idols.

Although the meaning is general and includes every Mushrik woman from among the idol worshippers and the People of the Scripture, Allah excluded the People of the Scripture from this ruling.

Allah stated:

مِنَ الَّذِينَ أُوتُواْ الْكِتَـبَ مِن قَبْلِكُمْ إِذَآ ءَاتَيْتُمُوهُنَّ أُجُورَهُنَّ مُحْصِنِينَ غَيْرَ مُسَافِحِينَ

(Lawful to you in marriage) are chaste women from those who were given the Scripture (Jews and Christians) before your time when you have given their due dowry, desiring chastity (i.e., taking them in legal wedlock) not committing illegal sexual intercourse. (5:5)

Ali bin Abu Talhah said that Ibn Abbas said about what Allah said: وَلاَ تَنكِحُواْ الْمُشْرِكَاتِ حَتَّى يُؤْمِنَّ  (And do not marry Al-Mushrikat (female idolators) till they believe (worship Allah Alone).

"Allah has excluded the women of the People of the Scripture.'' This is also the explanation of Mujahid, `Ikrimah, Sa`id bin Jubayr, Makhul, Al-Hasan, Ad-Dahhak, Zayd bin Aslam and Ar-Rabi` bin Anas and others.

Some scholars said that; the Ayah is exclusively talking about idol worshippers and not the People of the Scripture, and this meaning is similar to the first meaning we mentioned.

Allah knows best.

Abu Jafar bin Jarir (At-Tabari) said, after mentioning that there is Ijma that marrying women from the People of the Scripture is allowed, "Umar disliked this practice so that the Muslims do not refrain from marrying Muslim women, or for similar reasons.''

An authentic chain of narrators stated that Shaqiq said:

Once Hudhayfah married a Jewish woman and Umar wrote to him, "Divorce her.''

He wrote back, "Do you claim that she is not allowed for me so that I divorce her?''

He said, "No. But, I fear that you might marry the whores from among them.''

Ibn Jarir related that Zayd bin Wahb said that;

Umar bin Khattab said, "The Muslim man marries the Christian woman, but the Christian man does not marry the Muslim woman.''

This Hadith has a stronger, authentic chain of narrators than the previous Hadith.

Ibn Abu Hatim said that;

Ibn Umar disliked marrying the women from the People of the Scripture. He relied on his own explanation for the Ayah: وَلاَ تَنكِحُواْ الْمُشْرِكَاتِ حَتَّى يُؤْمِنَّ  (And do not marry Al-Mushrikat (female idolators) till they believe (worship Allah Alone).

Al-Bukhari also reported that Ibn Umar said, "I do not know of a bigger Shirk than her saying that Jesus is her Lord!''

Allah said:

... وَلأَمَةٌ مُّؤْمِنَةٌ خَيْرٌ مِّن مُّشْرِكَةٍ وَلَوْ أَعْجَبَتْكُمْ ...

And indeed a slave woman who believes is better than a (free) Mushrikah (female idolators), even though she pleases you.

It is recorded in the Two Sahihs that Abu Hurayrah narrated that the Prophet said:

تُنْـكَحُ الْمَرْأَةُ لِأَرْبَعٍ:

ˇ لِمَالِهَا

ˇ وَلِحَسَبِهَا

ˇ وَلِجَمَالِهَا

ˇ وَلِدِينِهَا،

فَاظْفَرْ بِذَاتِ الدِّينِ، تَرِبَتْ يَدَاك

A woman is chosen for marriage for four reasons:

ˇ her wealth,

ˇ social status,

ˇ beauty, and

ˇ religion.

So, marry the religious woman, may your hands be filled with sand (a statement of encouragement).

Muslim reported this Hadith from Jabir.

Muslim also reported that Ibn Amr said that Allah's Messenger said:

الدُّنْيَا مَتَاعٌ، وَخَيْرُ مَتَاعِ الدُّنْيَا الْمَرْأَةُ الصَّالِحَة

The life of this world is but a delight, and the best of the delights of this earthly life is the righteous wife.

Allah then said:

... وَلاَ تُنكِحُواْ الْمُشِرِكِينَ حَتَّى يُؤْمِنُواْ ...

And give not (your daughters) in marriage to Al-Mushrikin till they believe (in Allah Alone).

meaning, do not marry Mushrik men to believing women.

This statement is similar to Allah's statement:

لاَ هُنَّ حِلٌّ لَّهُمْ وَلاَ هُمْ يَحِلُّونَ لَهُنَّ

They are not lawful (wives) for them, nor are they lawful (husbands) for them. (60:10)

Next, Allah said:

... وَلَعَبْدٌ مُّؤْمِنٌ خَيْرٌ مِّن مُّشْرِكٍ وَلَوْ أَعْجَبَكُمْ ...

...and verily, a believing servant is better than a (free) Mushrik (idolator), even though he pleases you.

This Ayah indicates that a believing man, even an Abyssinian servant, is better than a Mushrik man, even if he was a rich master.

... أُوْلَـئِكَ يَدْعُونَ إِلَى النَّارِ ...

Those (Al-Mushrikun) invite you to the Fire,

meaning, associating and mingling with the disbelievers makes one love this life and prefer it over the Hereafter, leading to the severest repercussions.

Allah said:

... وَاللّهُ يَدْعُوَ إِلَى الْجَنَّةِ وَالْمَغْفِرَةِ بِإِذْنِهِ ...

...but Allah invites (you) to Paradise and forgiveness by His leave,

meaning, by His Law, commandments and prohibitions.

Allah said:

...وَيُبَيِّنُ آيَـتِهِ لِلنَّاسِ لَعَلَّهُمْ يَتَذَكَّرُونَ

and makes His Ayat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) clear to mankind that they may remember.

222

وَيَسْـَلُونَكَ عَنِ الْمَحِيضِ

They ask you concerning menstruation.

قُلْ هُوَ أَذًى فَاعْتَزِلُواْ النِّسَآءَ فِي الْمَحِيضِ وَلاَ تَقْرَبُوهُنَّ حَتَّى يَطْهُرْنَ

Say: "That is an Adha, therefore, keep away from women during menses and go not in unto them till they are purified.''

فَإِذَا تَطَهَّرْنَ فَأْتُوهُنَّ مِنْ حَيْثُ أَمَرَكُمُ اللَّهُ

And when they have purified themselves, then go in unto them as Allah has ordained for you.

إِنَّ اللَّهَ يُحِبُّ التَّوَبِينَ وَيُحِبُّ الْمُتَطَهِّرِينَ

Truly, Allah loves those who turn unto Him in repentance and loves those who purify themselves.

223

نِسَآؤُكُمْ حَرْثٌ لَّكُمْ فَأْتُواْ حَرْثَكُمْ أَنَّى شِئْتُمْ وَقَدِّمُواْ لاًّنفُسِكُمْ

Your wives are a tilth for you, so go to your tilth, when or how you will, and send (good deeds, or ask Allah to bestow upon you pious offspring) for your own selves beforehand.

وَاتَّقُواْ اللَّهَ وَاعْلَمُواْ أَنَّكُم مُّلَـقُوهُ وَبَشِّرِ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ

And fear Allah, and know that you are to meet Him (in the Hereafter), and give good tidings to the believers (O Muhammad).

Sexual Intercourse with Menstruating Women is prohibited

Allah says;

وَيَسْأَلُونَكَ عَنِ الْمَحِيضِ قُلْ هُوَ أَذًى فَاعْتَزِلُواْ النِّسَاء فِي الْمَحِيضِ وَلاَ تَقْرَبُوهُنَّ حَتَّىَ يَطْهُرْنَ ...

They ask you concerning menstruation.

Say: "That is an Adha, therefore, keep away from women during menses and go not in unto them till they are purified.''

Imam Ahmad recorded that Anas said that; the Jews used to avoid their menstruating women, they would not eat, or even mingle with them in the house. The Companions of the Prophet asked about this matter and Allah revealed: وَيَسْأَلُونَكَ عَنِ الْمَحِيضِ قُلْ هُوَ أَذًى فَاعْتَزِلُواْ النِّسَاء فِي الْمَحِيضِ وَلاَ تَقْرَبُوهُنَّ حَتَّىَ يَطْهُرْنَ  (They ask you concerning menstruation. Say: "That is an Adha, therefore, keep away from women during menses and go not in unto them till they are purified).

Allah's Messenger said:

اصْنَعُوا كُلَّ شَيْءٍ إِلَّا النِّكَاح

`Do everything you wish, except having sexual intercourse.

When the Jews were told about the Prophet's statement, they said, "What is the matter with this man He would not hear of any of our practices, but would defy it.''

Then, Usayd bin Hudayr and Abbad bin Bishr came and said, "O Messenger of Allah! The Jews said this and that, should we have sex with our women (meaning, during the menstruation period)''

The face of Allah's Messenger changed color, until the Companions thought that he was angry with them. They left.

Soon after, some milk was brought to Allah's Messenger as a gift, and he sent some of it for them to drink. They knew then that Allah's Messenger was not angry with them.

Muslim also reported this Hadith.

Allah said:

... فَاعْتَزِلُواْ النِّسَاء فِي الْمَحِيضِ ...

...therefore, keep away from women during menses,

meaning, avoid the sexual organ.

The Prophet said:

اصْنَعُوا كُلَّ شَيْءٍ إِلَّا النِّكَاح

Do anything you wish except having sexual intercourse.)

This is why most of the scholars said that it is allowed to fondle the wife, except for having sexual intercourse (when she is having her menses).

Abu Dawud reported that Ikrimah related to one of the Prophet's wives that she said that;

whenever the Prophet wanted to fondle (one of his wives) during her menses, he would cover her sexual organ with something.

Abu Jafar bin Jarir related that;

Masruq went to Aishah and greeted her, and Aishah greeted him in return. Masruq said, "I wish to ask you about a matter, but I am shy.''

She replied, "I am your mother and you are my son.''

He said, "What can the man enjoy of his wife when she is having her menses?''

She said, "Everything except her sexual organ.''

This is also the opinion of Ibn Abbas, Mujahid, Al-Hasan and Ikrimah.

One is Allowed to Sleep next to his Wife and to Eat with Her (when she is having her menses)

Aishah said, "Allah's Messenger used to ask me to wash his hair while I was having the menses. He would lay on my lap and read the Qur'an while I was having the period.''

It is also reported in the Sahih that Aishah said, "While having the menses, I used to eat from a piece of meat and give it to the Prophet who would eat from the same place I ate from. I used to have sips of a drink and would then give the cup to the Prophet who would place his mouth where I placed my mouth.''

It is also reported in the Two Sahihs that Maymunah bint Al-Harith Al-Hilaliyah said, "Whenever the Prophet wanted to fondle any of his wives during the periods (menses), he used to ask her to wear an Izar (a sheet covering the lower-half of the body).''

These are the wordings collected by Al-Bukhari.

Similar was reported from Aishah.

In addition, Imam Ahmad, Abu Dawud, At-Tirmidhi and Ibn Majah reported that;

Abdullah bin Sa`d Al-Ansari asked Allah's Messenger, "What am I allowed of my wife while she is having her menses?''

He said, "What is above the Izar (a sheet covering the lower-half of the body).''

Hence, Allah's statement: وَلاَ تَقْرَبُوهُنَّ حَتَّىَ يَطْهُرْنَ (...and go not in unto them till they are purified) explains His statement: فَاعْتَزِلُواْ النِّسَاء فِي الْمَحِيضِ  (...therefore, keep away from women during menses).

Allah prohibited having sexual intercourse with the wife during menstruation, indicating that sexual intercourse is allowed otherwise.

Allah's statement:

... فَإِذَا تَطَهَّرْنَ فَأْتُوهُنَّ مِنْ حَيْثُ أَمَرَكُمُ اللّهُ ...

And when they have purified themselves, then go in unto them as Allah has ordained for you.

indicates that men should have sexual intercourse with their wives after they take a bath.

The scholars agree that the woman is obliged to take a bath, or to perform Tayammum with sand, if she is unable to use water, before she is allowed to have sexual intercourse with her husband, after the monthly period ends.

Ibn Abbas said:

حَتَّىَ يَطْهُرْنَ "(till they are purified) means from blood, and,

فَإِذَا تَطَهَّرْنَ (And when they have purified themselves) means with water.''

This is also the Tafsir of Mujahid, Ikrimah, Al-Hasan, Muqatil bin Hayyan and Al-Layth bin Sa`d and others.

Anal Sex is prohibited

Allah said:

... مِنْ حَيْثُ أَمَرَكُمُ اللّهُ ...

...as Allah has ordained for you.

Ibn Abbas, Mujahid and other scholars have stated that; this refers to Al-Farj (the vagina)

Therefore, anal sex is prohibited, as we will further emphasize afterwards, Allah willing.

Abu Razin, Ikrimah and Ad-Dahhak and others said that: فَأْتُوهُنَّ مِنْ حَيْثُ أَمَرَكُمُ اللّهُ  (...then go in unto them as Allah has ordained for you) means, when they are pure, and not during the menses.

Allah said afterwards:

... إِنَّ اللّهَ يُحِبُّ التَّوَّابِينَ ...

Truly, Allah loves those who turn unto Him in repentance,

from the sin even if it was repeated.

... وَيُحِبُّ الْمُتَطَهِّرِينَ ﴿٢٢٢﴾

and loves those who purify themselves.

meaning, those who purify themselves from the impurity and the filth that include having sexual intercourse with the wife during the menses and anal sex.

The Reason behind revealing Allah's Statement: "Your Wives are a Tilth for You.

Allah said:

نِسَآؤُكُمْ حَرْثٌ لَّكُمْ ...  

Your wives are a tilth for you,

Ibn Abbas commented, "Meaning the place of pregnancy.''

Allah then said:

... فَأْتُواْ حَرْثَكُمْ أَنَّى شِئْتُمْ ...

...so go to your tilth, when or how you will,

meaning, wherever you wish from the front or from behind, as long as sex takes place in one valve (the female sexual organ), as the authentic Hadiths have indicated.

For instance, Al-Bukhari recorded that;

Ibn Al-Munkadir said that he heard Jabir say that the Jews used to claim that if one has sex with his wife from behind (in the vagina) the offspring would become cross-eyed.

Then, this Ayah was revealed: نِسَآؤُكُمْ حَرْثٌ لَّكُمْ فَأْتُواْ حَرْثَكُمْ أَنَّى شِئْتُمْ  (Your wives are a tilth for you, so go to your tilth, when or how you will).

Muslim and Abu Dawud also reported this Hadith.

Ibn Abu Hatim said that Muhammad bin Al-Munkadir narrated that Jabir bin Abdullah told him that;

the Jews claimed to the Muslims that if one has sex with their wife from behind (in the vagina) their offspring will become cross-eyed.

Allah revealed afterwards: نِسَآؤُكُمْ حَرْثٌ لَّكُمْ فَأْتُواْ حَرْثَكُمْ أَنَّى شِئْتُمْ  (Your wives are a tilth for you, so go to your tilth, when or how you will).

Ibn Jurayj (one of the reporters of the Hadith) said that Allah's Messenger said:

مُقْبِلَةً ومُدْبِرَةً إِذَا كَان ذلِكَ فِي الْفَرْج

From the front or from behind, as long as that occurs in the Farj (vagina).

Imam Ahmad recorded that Ibn Abbas said,

"The Ayah, نِسَآؤُكُمْ حَرْثٌ لَّكُمْ  (Your wives are a tilth for you) was revealed about some people from the Ansar who came to the Prophet and asked him (about having sex with the wife from behind).

He said to them:

ائْتِهَا عَلى كُلِّ حَالٍ إِذَا كَانَ فِي الْفَرْج

Have sex with her as you like as long as that occurs in the vagina.

Imam Ahmad recorded that Abdullah bin Sabit said:

I went to Hafsah bint Abdur-Rahman bin Abu Bakr and said, "I wish to ask you about something, but I am shy.''

She said, "Do not be shy, O my nephew.''

He said, "About having sex from behind with women.''

She said, "Umm Salamah told me that the Ansar used to refrain from having sex from behind (in the vagina). The Jews claimed that those who have sex with their women from behind would have offspring with crossed-eyes. When the Muhajirun came to Al-Madinah, they married Ansar women and had sex with them from behind. One of these women would not obey her husband and said, `You will not do that until I go to Allah's Messenger (and ask him about this matter).'

She went to Umm Salamah and told her the story.

Umm Salamah said, `Wait until Allah's Messenger comes.' When Allah's Messenger came, the Ansari woman was shy to ask him about this matter, so she left.

Umm Salamah told Allah's Messenger the story and he said: Summon the Ansari woman.

She was summoned and he recited this Ayah to her:

نِسَآؤُكُمْ حَرْثٌ لَّكُمْ فَأْتُواْ حَرْثَكُمْ أَنَّى شِئْتُمْ

Your wives are a tilth for you, so go to your tilth, when or how you will.

He added:

صِمَامًا وَاحِدًا

Only in one valve (the vagina).''

This Hadith was also collected by At-Tirmidhi who said, "Hasan.''

An-Nasa'i reported that Ka`b bin Alqamah said that Abu An-Nadr said that; he asked Nafi, "The people are repeating the statement that you relate from Ibn Umar that he allowed sex with women in their rear (anus).''

He said, "They have said a lie about me. But let me tell you what really happened.

Ibn Umar was once reciting the Qur'an while I was with him and he reached the Ayah: نِسَآؤُكُمْ حَرْثٌ لَّكُمْ فَأْتُواْ حَرْثَكُمْ أَنَّى شِئْتُمْ  (Your wives are a tilth for you, so go to your tilth, when or how you will), he then said, `O Nafi`! Do you know the story behind this Ayah?'

I said, `No.'

He said, `We, the people of Quraysh, used to have sexual intercourse with our wives from the back (in the vagina). When we migrated to Al-Madinah and married some Ansari women, we wanted to do the same with them. They disliked it and made a big issue out of it. The Ansari women had followed the practice of the Jews who have sex with their women while they lay on their sides. Then, Allah revealed: نِسَآؤُكُمْ حَرْثٌ لَّكُمْ فَأْتُواْ حَرْثَكُمْ أَنَّى شِئْتُمْ  (Your wives are a tilth for you, so go to your tilth, when or how you will).''

This has an authentic chain of narrators.

Imam Ahmad reported that Khuzaymah bin Thabit Al-Khatami narrated that Allah's Messenger said:

لَا يَسْتَحْيِي اللهُ مِنَ الْحَقِّ ثَلَاثًا لَا تَأْتُوا النِّسَاءَ فِي أَعْجَازِهِن

Allah does not shy from the truth - he said it thrice-, do not have anal sex with women.

This Hadith was collected by An-Nasa'i and Ibn Majah.

Abu Isa At-Tirmidhi and An-Nasa'i reported that Ibn Abbas narrated that Allah's Messenger said:

لَا يَنْظُرُ اللهُ إِلى رَجُلٍ أَتَى رَجُلًا أَوِ امْرَأَةً فِي الدُّبُر

Allah does not look at a man who had anal sex with another man or a woman.

At-Tirmidhi said, "Hasan Gharib.''

This is also the narration that Ibn Hibban collected in his Sahih, while Ibn Hazm stated that this is an authentic Hadith.

In addition, Imam Ahmad reported that Ali bin Talaq said, "Allah's Messenger forbade anal sex with women, for Allah does not shy away from truth.''

Abu Isa At-Tirmidhi also reported this Hadith and said, "Hasan''.

Abu Muhammad Abdullah bin Abdur-Rahman Darimi reported in his Musnad that;

Sa`id bin Yasar Abu Hubab said: I said to Ibn Umar, "What do you say about having sex with women in the rear?''

He said, "What does it mean?''

I said, "Anal sex.''

He said, "Does a Muslim do that?''

This Hadith has an authentic chain of narrators and is an explicit rejection of anal sex from Ibn Umar.

Abu Bakr bin Ziyad Naysaburi reported that Ismail bin Ruh said that; he asked Malik bin Anas, "What do you say about having sex with women in the anus?''

He said, "You are not an Arab. Does sex occur but in the place of pregnancy? Do it only in the Farj (vagina).''

I said, "O Abu Abdullah! They say that you allow that practice.''

He said, "They utter a lie about me, they lie about me.''

This is Malik's firm stance on this subject.

It is also the view of Sa`id bin Musayyib, Abu Salamah, Ikrimah, Tawus, Ata, Sa`id bin Jubayr, Urwah bin Az-Zubayr, Mujahid bin Jabr, Al-Hasan and other scholars of the Salaf (the Companions and the following two generations after them).

They all, along with the majority of the scholars, harshly rebuked the practice of anal sex and many of them called this practice a Kufr.

Allah said:

... وَقَدِّمُواْ لأَنفُسِكُمْ ...

...and send for your own selves beforehand.

meaning, by performing the acts of worship while refraining from whatever Allah has prohibited for you.

This is why Allah said afterwards:

... وَاتَّقُواْ اللّهَ وَاعْلَمُواْ أَنَّكُم مُّلاَقُوهُ ...

And fear Allah, and know that you are to meet Him (in the Hereafter),

meaning, He will hold you accountable for all of your deeds.

... وَبَشِّرِ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ ﴿٢٢٣﴾

...and give good tidings to the believers (O Muhammad).

meaning, those who obey what Allah has commanded and refrain from what He has prohibited.

Ibn Jarir reported that Ata said, or related it to Ibn Abbas, وَقَدِّمُواْ لأَنفُسِكُمْ  (...and send for your own selves beforehand) means, mention Allah's Name, by saying, `Bismillah', before having sexual intercourse.''

Al-Bukhari also reported that Ibn Abbas narrated that Allah's Messenger said:

لَوْ أَنَّ أَحَدَكُمْ إِذَا أَرَادَ أَنْ يَأْتِيَ أَهْلَهُ قَالَ: بِاسْمِ اللهِ، اللَّهُمَّ جَنِّبْنَا الشَّيْطَانَ وَجَنِّبِ الشَّيْطَانَ مَا رَزَقْتَنَا، فَإنَّهُ إِنْ يُقَدَّرْ بَيْنَهُمَا وَلَدٌ فِي ذلِكَ، لَمْ يَضُرَّهُ الشَّيْطَانُ أَبَدًا

If anyone of you on having sexual relations with his wife said: `In the Name of Allah. O Allah! Protect us from Satan and also protect what you bestow upon us (i.e., the coming offspring) from Satan,' and if it is destined that they should have a child then, Satan will never be able to harm him.

224

وَلاَ تَجْعَلُواْ اللَّهَ عُرْضَةً لاًّيْمَـنِكُمْ أَن تَبَرُّواْ وَتَتَّقُواْ وَتُصْلِحُواْ بَيْنَ النَّاسِ وَاللَّهُ سَمِيعٌ عَلِيمٌ

And make not Allah's (Name) an excuse in your oaths against doing good and acting piously, and making peace among mankind. And Allah is All-Hearer, All-Knower (i.e., do not swear much and if you have sworn against doing something good then give an expiation for the oath and do good).

225

لاَّ يُؤَاخِذُكُمُ اللَّهُ بِالَّلغْوِ فِى أَيْمَـنِكُمْ وَلَـكِن يُؤَاخِذُكُم بِمَا كَسَبَتْ قُلُوبُكُمْ وَاللَّهُ غَفُورٌ حَلِيمٌ

Allah will not call you to account for that which is unintentional in your oaths, but He will call you to account for that which your hearts have earned. And Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most-Forbearing.

The Prohibition of swearing to abandon a Good Deed

Allah commands,

وَلاَ تَجْعَلُواْ اللّهَ عُرْضَةً لِّأَيْمَانِكُمْ أَن تَبَرُّواْ وَتَتَّقُواْ وَتُصْلِحُواْ بَيْنَ النَّاسِ وَاللّهُ سَمِيعٌ عَلِيمٌ ﴿٢٢٤﴾  

And make not Allah's (Name) an excuse in your oaths against doing good and acting piously, and making peace among mankind. And Allah is All-Hearer, All-Knower (i.e., do not swear much and if you have sworn against doing something good then give an expiation for the oath and do good).

Allah commands, `You should not implement your vows in Allah's Name to refrain from pious acts and severing the relations with the relatives, if you swear to abandon such causes.'

Allah said in another Ayah:

وَلاَ يَأْتَلِ أُوْلُواْ الْفَضْلِ مِنكُمْ وَالسَّعَةِ أَن يُؤْتُواْ أُوْلِى الْقُرْبَى وَالْمَسَـكِينَ وَالْمُهَـجِرِينَ فِى سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ وَلْيَعْفُواْ وَلْيَصْفَحُواْ أَلاَ تُحِبُّونَ أَن يَغْفِرَ اللَّهُ لَكُمْ

(And let not those among you who are blessed with graces and wealth swear not to give (any sort of help) to their kinsmen, Al-Masakin (the poor), and those who left their homes for Allah's cause. Let them pardon and forgive. Do you not love that Allah should forgive you! (24:22)

Continuity in a sinful vow is more sinful than breaking it by expiation.

Allah's Messenger said:

وَاللهِ لَأَنْ يَلَجَّ أَحَدُكُمْ بِيَمِينِهِ فِي أَهْلِهِ آثَمُ لَهُ عِنْد اللهِ مِنْ أَنْ يُعْطِيَ كَفَّارَتَهُ الَّتِي افْتَرَضَ اللهُ عَلَيْه

By Allah! It is more sinful to Allah that one of you implements his vow regarding (severing the relations with) his relatives than (breaking his promise and) paying the Kaffarah that Allah has required in such cases.

This is how Muslim reported this Hadith and also Imam Ahmad.

Ali bin Abu Talhah reported that Ibn Abbas said that what Allah said: وَلاَ تَجْعَلُواْ اللّهَ عُرْضَةً لِّأَيْمَانِكُمْ  (And make not Allah's (Name) an excuse in your oaths) means, "Do not vow to refrain from doing good works. (If you make such vow then) break it, pay the Kaffarah and do the good work.''

This was also said by Masruq, Ash-Sha`bi, Ibrahim An-Nakhai, Mujahid, Tawus, Sa`id bin Jubayr, Ata, Ikrimah, Makhul, Az-Zuhri, Al-Hasan, Qatadah, Muqatil bin Hayyan, Ar-Rabi bin Anas, Ad-Dahhak, Ata Al-Khurasani and As-Suddi.

Supporting this view, which is the majority view, is what is reported in the Two Sahihs that Abu Musa Al-Ashari narrated that Allah's Messenger said:

إِنِّي وَاللهِ إِنْ شَاءَ اللهُ، لَا أَحْلِفُ عَلى يَمِينٍ فَأَرَى غَيْرَهَا خَيْرًا مِنْهَا إِلَّا أَتَيْتُ الَّذِي هُوَ خَيْرٌ وَتَحَلَّلْتُهَا

By Allah! Allah willing, I will not vow to do a thing and then see a better act, but I would do what is better and break my vow.

Muslim reported that Abu Hurayrah said that Allah's Messenger said:

مَنْ حَلَفَ عَلى يَمِينٍ فَرَأَى غَيْرَهَا خَيْرًا مِنْهَا فَلْيُكَفِّرْ عَنْ يَمِينِهِ، وَلْيَفْعَلِ الَّذِي هُوَ خَيْر

Whoever makes a vow and then finds what is better than his vow (should break his vow) pay the Kaffarah and perform the better deed.

The Laghw (Unintentional) Vows

Allah said:

لاَّ يُؤَاخِذُكُمُ اللّهُ بِاللَّغْوِ فِيَ أَيْمَانِكُمْ ...  

Allah will not call you to account for that which is unintentional in your oaths,

This Ayah means, `Allah does not punish or hold you accountable for the Laghw (unintentional) vows that you make.'

The Laghw vows are unintentional and are just like the habitual statements that the tongue repeats, without really intending them. For instance, it is reported in the Two Sahihs that Abu Hurayrah narrated that Allah's Messenger said:

مَنْ حَلَفَ فَقَالَ فِي حَلِفِهِ بِاللَّاتِ وَالْعُزَّى، فَلْيَقُلْ لَا إِلَهَ إِلَّا الله

Whoever swore and (unintentionally) mentioned Al-Lat and Al-Uzza (two idols) in his vow, should then say, `There is no deity worthy of worship except Allah'.

The Messenger said this statement to some new Muslims whose tongues were, before Islam, used to vowing by their idol Al-Lat. Therefore, the Prophet ordered them to intentionally recite the slogan of Ikhlas, just as they mentioned these words by mistake, so that it (the word of Ikhlas) may eradicate the word (of Shirk). This is why Allah said:

... وَلَكِن يُؤَاخِذُكُم بِمَا كَسَبَتْ قُلُوبُكُمْ ...

...but He will call you to account for that which your hearts have earned.

and in another Ayah,

بِمَا عَقَّدتُّمُ الاٌّيْمَـنَ

...for your deliberate oaths. (5:89)

Abu Dawud reported under Chapter: `The Laghw Vows' that Ata said that Aishah said that Allah's Messenger said:

اللَّغْوُ فِي الْيَمِينِ هُوَ كَلَامُ الرَّجُلِ فِي بَيْتِهِ: كَلَّا وَاللهِ، وَبَلَى وَالله

The Laghw in the vows includes what the man says in his house, such as, `No, by Allah,' and, `Yes, by Allah'.

Ibn Abu Hatim reported that Ibn Abbas said, "The Laghw vow includes vowing while angry.''

He also reported that Ibn Abbas said, "The Laghw vow includes vowing to prohibit what Allah has allowed, and this type does not require a Kaffarah (expiation).''

Similar was said by Sa`id bin Jubayr.

In addition, Abu Dawud related under Chapter: `Vowing while Angry' that;

Sa`id bin Musayyib said that two Ansari brothers both received inheritance and one of them asked that the inheritance be divided. His brother said, "If you ask me about dividing the inheritance again, then all of what I have will be spent on the Ka`bah's door.''

Umar said to him, "The Ka`bah does not need your money. So break your vow, pay the Kaffarah and come to terms with your brother. I heard Allah's Messenger saying:

لَا يَمِينَ عَلَيْكَ وَلَا نَذْرَ فِي مَعْصِيَةِ الرَّبِّ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ، وَفِي قَطِيعَةِ الرَّحِمِ، وَفِيمَا لَا تَمْلِك

Do not make a vow against yourself, nor to disobey the Lord, cut the relations of the womb or dispose of what you do not own.''

Allah said:

... وَلَكِن يُؤَاخِذُكُم بِمَا كَسَبَتْ قُلُوبُكُمْ ...

...but He will call you to account for that which your hearts have earned,

Ibn Abbas, Mujahid and several others said that; this Ayah means swearing about a matter while knowing that he is lying.

Mujahid and others said this Ayah is similar to what Allah said:

وَلَـكِن يُؤَاخِذُكُم بِمَا عَقَّدتُّمُ الاٌّيْمَـنَ

...but He will punish you for your deliberate oaths. (5:89)

Allah said,

... وَاللّهُ غَفُورٌ حَلِيمٌ ﴿٢٢٥﴾

And Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most-Forbearing.

meaning, He is Oft-Forgiving to His servants and Most Forbearing with them.

226

لِّلَّذِينَ يُؤْلُونَ مِن نِّسَآئِهِمْ تَرَبُّصُ أَرْبَعَةِ أَشْهُرٍ فَإِن فَآءُوا فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ غَفُورٌ رَّحِيمٌ

Those who take an oath not to have sexual relation with their wives must wait for four months, then if they return, verily, Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.

227

وَإِنْ عَزَمُواْ الطَّلَـقَ فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ سَمِيعٌ عَلِيمٌ

And if they decide upon divorce, then Allah is All-Hearer, All-Knower.

The Ila' and its Rulings

Allah says;

لِّلَّذِينَ يُؤْلُونَ مِن نِّسَآئِهِمْ تَرَبُّصُ أَرْبَعَةِ أَشْهُرٍ فَإِنْ فَآؤُوا فَإِنَّ اللّهَ غَفُورٌ رَّحِيمٌ ﴿٢٢٦﴾  

Those who take an oath not to have sexual relation with their wives must wait for four months, then if they return, verily, Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.

Ila' is a type of vow where a man swears not to sleep with his wife for a certain period, whether less or more than four months. If the vow of Ila' was for less than four months, the man has to wait for the vow's period to end and then is allowed to have sexual intercourse with his wife. She has to be patient and she cannot ask her husband, in this case, to end his vow before the end of its term.

It is reported in the Two Sahihs that Aishah said that;

Allah's Messenger swore he would stay away from with his wives for a month. He then came down after twenty-nine days saying:

الشَّهْرُ تِسْعٌ وَعِشْرُون

The (lunar) month is twenty-nine days.

Similar was narrated by Umar bin Al-Khattab and reported in the Two Sahihs.

If the period of Ila' is for more than four months, the wife is allowed in this case to ask her husband, upon the end of the four months, to end the Ila' and have sexual relations with her. Otherwise, he should divorce her, by being forced to do so by the authorities if necessary, so that the wife is not harmed.

Allah said:

لِّلَّذِينَ يُؤْلُونَ مِن نِّسَآئِهِمْ ...

Those who take an oath not to have sexual relations with their wives,

meaning, swear not to have sexual relations with the wife.

This Ayah indicates that the Ila' involves the wife and not a slave-women, as the majority of the scholars have agreed,

... تَرَبُّصُ أَرْبَعَةِ أَشْهُرٍ ...

...must wait for four months,

meaning, the husband waits for four months from the time of the vow and then ends the Ila' (if the vow was for four or more months) and is required to either return to his wife or divorce her.

This is why Allah said next:

... فَإِنْ فَآؤُوا ...

...then if they return,

meaning, to a normal relationship, having sexual intercourse with the wife.

This is the Tafsir of Ibn Abbas, Masruq, Ash-Sha`bi, Sa`id bin Jubayr and Ibn Jarir.

... فَإِنَّ اللّهَ غَفُورٌ رَّحِيمٌ ﴿٢٢٦﴾

...verily, Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.

with any shortcomings that occurred in the rights of the wife because of the vow of Ila'.

Allah said:

وَإِنْ عَزَمُواْ الطَّلاَقَ فَإِنَّ اللّهَ سَمِيعٌ عَلِيمٌ ﴿٢٢٧﴾  

And if they decide upon divorce, then Allah is All-Hearer, All-Knower.

وَإِنْ عَزَمُواْ الطَّلاَقَ  (And if they decide upon divorce), indicating that divorce does not occur by merely passing the four month mark (during the Ila').

Malik reported from Nafi` that Abdullah bin Umar said, "If the man swears to Ila' from his wife, then divorce does not occur automatically even after the four months have passed. When he stops at the four months mark, he should either divorce or return.''

Al-Bukhari also reported this Hadith.

Ibn Jarir reported that Suhayl bin Abu Salih said that his father said, "I asked twelve Companions about the man who does Ila' with his wife. They all stated that he does not have to do anything until the four months have passed and then has to either retain or divorce her.''

Ad-Daraqutni also reported this from Suhayl.

It is also reported from Umar, Uthman, Ali, Abu Ad-Darda, Aishah, Ibn Umar and Ibn Abbas.

This is also the opinion of Sa`id bin Musayyib, Umar bin Abdul-Aziz, Mujahid, Tawus, Muhammad bin Ka`b and Al-Qasim.

228

وَالْمُطَلَّقَـتُ يَتَرَبَّصْنَ بِأَنْفُسِهِنَّ ثَلَـثَةَ قُرُوءٍ وَلاَ يَحِلُّ لَهُنَّ أَن يَكْتُمْنَ مَا خَلَقَ اللَّهُ فِى أَرْحَامِهِنَّ إِن كُنَّ يُؤْمِنَّ بِاللَّهِ وَالْيَوْمِ الاٌّخِرِ

And divorced women shall wait (as regards their marriage) for three menstrual periods, and it is not lawful for them to conceal what Allah has created in their wombs, if they believe in Allah and the Last Day.

وَبُعُولَتُهُنَّ أَحَقُّ بِرَدِّهِنَّ فِي ذَلِكَ إِنْ أَرَادُواْ إِصْلَـحاً

And their husbands have the better right to take them back in that period, if they wish for reconciliation.

وَلَهُنَّ مِثْلُ الَّذِى عَلَيْهِنَّ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ وَلِلرِّجَالِ عَلَيْهِنَّ دَرَجَةٌ وَاللَّهُ عَزِيزٌ حَكُيمٌ

And they (women) have rights (over their husbands as regards living expenses) similar (to those of their husbands) over them (as regards obedience and respect) to what is reasonable, but men have a degree (of responsibility) over them. And Allah is All-Mighty, All-Wise.

The Iddah (Waiting Period) of the Divorced Woman

Allah says;

وَالْمُطَلَّقَاتُ يَتَرَبَّصْنَ بِأَنفُسِهِنَّ ثَلاَثَةَ قُرُوَءٍ ...  

And divorced women shall wait (as regards their marriage) for three menstrual periods,

This Ayah contains a command from Allah that the divorced woman, whose marriage was consummated and who still has menstruation periods, should wait for three (menstrual) periods (Quru) after the divorce and then remarry if she wishes.

The Meaning of Al-Quru

Ibn Jarir related that Alqamah said:

We were with Umar bin Al-Khattab when a woman came and said, "My husband divorced me one or two periods ago. He then came back to me while I had prepared my water (for taking a bath), took off my clothes and closed my door.''

Umar asked Abdullah bin Mas`ud, "What do you think?''

He said, "I think that she is still his wife, as long as she is not allowed to resume praying (i.e., until the third period ends before he takes her back).''

Umar said, "This is my opinion too.''

This is also the opinion of Abu Bakr As-Siddiq, Umar, Uthman, Ali, Abu Ad-Darda, Ubadah bin As-Samit, Anas bin Malik, Ibn Mas`ud, Mu`adh, Ubayy bin Ka`b, Abu Musa Al-Ash`ari and Ibn Abbas.

Furthermore, this is the opinion of Sa`id bin Musayyib, Alqamah, Aswad, Ibrahim, Mujahid, Ata, Tawus, Sa`id bin Jubayr, Ikrimah, Muhammad bin Sirin, Al-Hasan, Qatadah, Ash-Sha`bi, Ar-Rabi, Muqatil bin Hayyan, As-Suddi, Makhul, Ad-Dahhak and Ata Al-Khurasani.

They all stated that the Quru is the menstruation period.

What testifies to this is the Hadith that Abu Dawud and An-Nasa'i reported that Fatimah bint Abu Hubaiysh said that Allah's Messenger said to her:

دَعِي الصَّلاَةَ أَيَّامَ أَقْرَائِك

Do not pray during your Aqra (pl. for Quru, the menstruation period).

If this Hadith was authentic, it would have been a clear proof that the Quru is the menstruation period. However, one of the narrators of this Hadith, Al-Mundhir, is an unknown person (in Hadith terminology), as Abu Hatim has stated, although Ibn Hibban has mentioned Al-Mundhir in his book Ath-Thiqat.

A Woman's Statement about Menses and Purity is to be accepted

Allah said:

... وَلاَ يَحِلُّ لَهُنَّ أَن يَكْتُمْنَ مَا خَلَقَ اللّهُ فِي أَرْحَامِهِنَّ ...

...and it is not lawful for them to conceal what Allah has created in their wombs,

meaning, of pregnancy or menstruation periods.

This is the Tafsir of Ibn Abbas, Ibn Umar, Mujahid, Ash-Sha`bi, Al-Hakam bin Utaybah, Ar-Rabi bin Anas, Ad-Dahhak and others.

Allah then said:

... إِن كُنَّ يُؤْمِنَّ بِاللّهِ وَالْيَوْمِ الآخِرِ ...

...if they believe in Allah and the Last Day.

This Ayah warns women against hiding the truth (if they were pregnant or on their menses), indicating that they are the authority in such matters as they alone know such facts about themselves. Since verifying such matters is difficult, Allah left this decision with them. Yet, women were warned not to hide the truth in case they wish to end the Iddah sooner, or later, according to their desires. Women were thus commanded to say the truth (if they were pregnant or on their menses), no more and no less.

The Husband has the Right to take back his Divorced Wife during the Iddah (Waiting Period)

Allah said:

... وَبُعُولَتُهُنَّ أَحَقُّ بِرَدِّهِنَّ فِي ذَلِكَ إِنْ أَرَادُواْ إِصْلاَحًا ...

And their husbands have the better right to take them back in that period, if they wish for reconciliation.

Hence, the husband who divorces his wife can take her back, providing she is still in her Iddah (time spent before a divorced woman or a widow can remarry) and that his aim, by taking her back, is righteous and for the purpose of bringing things back to normal. However, this ruling applies where the husband is eligible to take his divorced wife back.

We should mention that (when this Ayah 2:228 was revealed), the ruling that made the divorce thrice and specified when the husband is ineligible to take his divorced wife back, had not been revealed yet. Previously, the man used to divorce his wife and then take her back even if he had divorced her a hundred separate times. Thereafter, Allah revealed the following Ayah (2:229) that made the divorce only thrice. So there was now a reversible divorce and an irreversible final divorce.

The Rights the Spouses have over Each Other

Allah said:

... وَلَهُنَّ مِثْلُ الَّذِي عَلَيْهِنَّ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ ...

And they (women) have rights (over their husbands as regards living expenses) similar (to those of their husbands) over them (as regards obedience and respect) to what is reasonable,

This Ayah indicates that the wife has certain rights on her husband, just as he has certain rights on her, and each is obliged to give the other spouse his due rights.

Muslim reported that Jabir said that Allah's Messenger said:

فَاتَّقُوا اللهَ فِي النِّسَاءِ، فَإِنَّكُمْ أَخَذْتُمُوهُنَّ بِأَمَانَةِ اللهِ، وَاسْتَحْلَلْتُمْ فُرُوجَهُنَّ بِكَلِمَةِ اللهِ،

Fear Allah regarding your women, for you have taken them by Allah's covenant and were allowed to enjoy with them sexually by Allah's Words.

وَلَكُمْ عَلَيْهِنَّ أَنْ لَا يُوطِئْنَ فُرُشَكُمْ أَحَدًا تَكْرَهُونَهُ، فَإِنْ فَعَلْنَ ذَلِكَ فَاضْرِبُوهُنَّ ضَرْبًا غَيْرَ مُبَرِّحٍ،

You have the right on them that they do not allow anyone you dislike to sit on your mat. If they do that, then discipline them leniently.

وَلَهُنَّ رِزْقُهُنَّ وَكِسْوَتُهُنَّ بِالْمَعْرُوف

They have the right to be spent on and to be bought clothes in what is reasonable.

Bahz bin Hakim said that Muawiyah bin Haydah Al-Qushayri related that his grandfather said,

"O Messenger of Allah! What is the right the wife of one of us has?''

The Prophet said:

أَنْ تُطْعِمَهَا إِذَا طَعِمْتَ، وتَكْسُوَهَا إِذَا اكْتَسَيْتَ، وَلَا تَضْرِبِ الْوَجْهَ، وَلَا تُقَبِّحْ، وَلَا تَهْجُرْ إِلَّا فِي الْبَيْت

To feed her when you eat, buy her clothes when you buy for yourself and to refrain from striking her on the face, cursing her or staying away from her except in the house.

Waki related that Ibn Abbas said,

"I like to take care of my appearance for my wife just as I like for her to take care of her appearance for me. This is because Allah says: وَلَهُنَّ مِثْلُ الَّذِي عَلَيْهِنَّ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ  (And they (women) have rights similar (to those of their husbands) over them to what is reasonable).''

This statement is reported by Ibn Jarir and Ibn Abu Hatim.

The Virtue Men have over Women

Allah said:

... وَلِلرِّجَالِ عَلَيْهِنَّ دَرَجَةٌ ...

but men have a degree (of responsibility) over them.

This Ayah indicates that men are in a more advantageous position than women physically as well as in their mannerism, status, obedience (of women to them), spending, taking care of the affairs and in general, in this life and in the Hereafter.

Allah said (in another Ayah),

الرِّجَالُ قَوَّامُونَ عَلَى النِّسَآءِ بِمَا فَضَّلَ اللَّهُ بَعْضَهُمْ عَلَى بَعْضٍ وَبِمَآ أَنفَقُواْ مِنْ أَمْوَلِهِمْ

Men are the protectors and maintainers of women, because Allah has made one of them to excel the other, and because they spend (to support them) from their means. (4:34)

Allah's statement:

... وَاللّهُ عَزِيزٌ حَكُيمٌ ﴿٢٢٨﴾

And Allah is All-Mighty, All-Wise.

means, He is Mighty in His punishment of those who disobey and defy His commands. He is Wise in what He commands, destines and legislates.

229

الطَّلَـقُ مَرَّتَانِ فَإِمْسَاكٌ بِمَعْرُوفٍ أَوْ تَسْرِيحٌ بِإِحْسَـنٍ

The divorce is twice, after that either you retain her on reasonable terms or release her with kindness.

وَلاَ يَحِلُّ لَكُمْ أَن تَأْخُذُواْ مِمَّآ ءَاتَيْتُمُوهُنَّ شَيْئًا إِلاَّ أَن يَخَافَآ أَلاَّ يُقِيمَا حُدُودَ اللَّهِ

And it is not lawful for you (men) to take back (from your wives) any of what you gave them (the Mahr, bridal-money given by the husband to his wife at the time of marriage), except when both parties fear that they would be unable to keep the limits ordained by Allah (e.g., to deal with each other on a fair basis).

فَإِنْ خِفْتُمْ أَلاَّ يُقِيمَا حُدُودَ اللَّهِ فَلاَ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْهِمَا فِيمَا افْتَدَتْ بِهِ

Then if you fear that they would not be able to keep the limits ordained by Allah, then there is no sin on either of them if she gives back (the Mahr or a part of it).

تِلْكَ حُدُودُ اللَّهِ فَلاَ تَعْتَدُوهَا وَمَن يَتَعَدَّ حُدُودَ اللَّهِ فَأُوْلَـئِكَ هُمُ الظَّـلِمُونَ

These are the limits ordained by Allah, so do not transgress them. And whoever transgresses the limits ordained by Allah, then such are the wrongdoers.

230

فَإِن طَلَّقَهَا فَلاَ تَحِلُّ لَهُ مِن بَعْدُ حَتَّى تَنْكِحَ زَوْجًا غَيْرَهُ

And if he has divorced her (the third time), then she is not lawful unto him thereafter until she has married another husband.

فَإِن طَلَّقَهَا فَلاَ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْهِمَآ أَن يَتَرَاجَعَآ إِن ظَنَّآ أَن يُقِيمَا حُدُودَ اللَّهِ

Then, if the other husband divorces her, it is no sin on both of them that they reunite, provided they feel that they can keep the limits ordained by Allah.

وَتِلْكَ حُدُودُ اللَّهِ يُبَيِّنُهَا لِقَوْمٍ يَعْلَمُونَ

These are the limits of Allah, which He makes plain for the people who have knowledge.

Divorce is Thrice

Allah says;

الطَّلاَقُ مَرَّتَانِ فَإِمْسَاكٌ بِمَعْرُوفٍ أَوْ تَسْرِيحٌ بِإِحْسَانٍ ...

The divorce is twice, after that, either you retain her on reasonable terms or release her with kindness.

This honorable Ayah abrogated the previous practice in the beginning of Islam, when the man had the right to take back his divorced wife even if he had divorced her a hundred times, as long as she was still in her Iddah (waiting period). This situation was harmful for the wife, and this is why Allah made the divorce thrice, where the husband is allowed to take back his wife after the first and the second divorce (as long as she is still in her Iddah).

The divorce becomes irrevocable after the third divorce, as Allah said: الطَّلاَقُ مَرَّتَانِ فَإِمْسَاكٌ بِمَعْرُوفٍ أَوْ تَسْرِيحٌ بِإِحْسَانٍ (The divorce is twice, after that, either you retain her on reasonable terms or release her with kindness).

In his Sunan, Abu Dawud reported in Chapter:

"Taking the Wife back after the third (Divorce) is an abrogated practice," that Ibn Abbas commented on the Ayah: وَالْمُطَلَّقَاتُ يَتَرَبَّصْنَ بِأَنفُسِهِنَّ ثَلاَثَةَ قُرُوَءٍ وَلاَ يَحِلُّ لَهُنَّ أَن يَكْتُمْنَ مَا خَلَقَ اللّهُ فِي أَرْحَامِهِنَّ  (And divorced women shall wait (as regards their marriage) for three menstrual periods, and it is not lawful for them to conceal what Allah has created in their wombs,) (2:228). The man used to have the right to take back his wife even if he had divorced her thrice. Allah abrogated this and said: الطَّلاَقُ مَرَّتَانِ (The divorce is twice).

This Tafsir was also collected by An-Nasa'i.

Ibn Abu Hatim reported that Urwah said that a man said to his wife,

"I will neither divorce you nor take you back.''

She said, "How?''

He said, "I will divorce you and when your term of Iddah nears its end, I will take you back.''

She went to Allah's Messenger and told him what happened, and Allah revealed: الطَّلاَقُ مَرَّتَانِ (The divorce is twice).

Ibn Jarir (At-Tabari) also reported this Hadith in his Tafsir.

Allah said:

... فَإِمْسَاكٌ بِمَعْرُوفٍ أَوْ تَسْرِيحٌ بِإِحْسَانٍ ...  

...after that, either you retain her on reasonable terms or release her with kindness,

meaning, `If you divorce her once or twice, you have the choice to take her back, as long as she is still in her Iddah, intending to be kind to her and to mend differences. Otherwise, await the end of her term of Iddah, when the divorce becomes final, and let her go her own way in peace, without committing any harm or injustice against her.'

Ali bin Abu Talhah reported that Ibn Abbas said,

"When the man divorces his wife twice, let him fear Allah, regarding the third time. He should either keep her with him and treat her with kindness, or let her go her own way with kindness, without infringing upon any of her rights.''

Taking back the Mahr (Dowry)

Allah said:

... وَلاَ يَحِلُّ لَكُمْ أَن تَأْخُذُواْ مِمَّا آتَيْتُمُوهُنَّ شَيْئًا ...

And it is not lawful for you (men) to take back (from your wives) any of (the dowry) what you gave them,

meaning, you are not allowed to bother or pressure your wives to end this situation by giving you back the Mahr and any gifts that you have given them (in return for divorce).

Similarly, Allah said:

وَلاَ تَعْضُلُوهُنَّ لِتَذْهَبُواْ بِبَعْضِ مَآ ءَاتَيْتُمُوهُنَّ إِلاَّ أَن يَأْتِينَ بِفَاحِشَةٍ مُّبَيِّنَةٍ

...and you should not treat them with harshness, that you may take away part of what you have given them, unless they commit open illegal sexual intercourse. (4:19)

However, if the wife willingly gives back anything with a good heart, then Allah said regarding this situation:

فَإِن طِبْنَ لَكُمْ عَن شَىْءٍ مِّنْهُ نَفْساً فَكُلُوهُ هَنِيئاً مَّرِيئاً

...but if they, of their own good pleasure, remit any part of it to you, take it, and enjoy it without fear of any harm. (4:4)

Allowing Khul` and the Return of the Mahr in that Case

When the spouses have irreconcilable differences wherein the wife ignores the rights of the husband, dislikes him and becomes unable to live with him any longer, she is allowed to free herself (from married life) by giving him back what he had given her (in gifts and Mahr). There is no sin on her in this case nor on him if he accepts such offer.

This is why Allah said:

... وَلاَ يَحِلُّ لَكُمْ أَن تَأْخُذُواْ مِمَّا آتَيْتُمُوهُنَّ شَيْئًا إِلاَّ أَن يَخَافَا أَلاَّ يُقِيمَا حُدُودَ اللّهِ فَإِنْ خِفْتُمْ أَلاَّ يُقِيمَا حُدُودَ اللّهِ فَلاَ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْهِمَا فِيمَا افْتَدَتْ بِهِ ...

And it is not lawful for you (men) to take back (from your wives) any of what you gave them, except when both parties fear that they would be unable to keep the limits ordained by Allah (e.g., to deal with each other on a fair basis). Then if you fear that they would not be able to keep the limits ordained by Allah, then there is no sin on either of them if she gives back.

Sometimes, the woman has no valid reason and she still asks for her marriage to be ended. In this case, Ibn Jarir reported that Thawban said that Allah's Messenger said:

أَيُّمَا امْرَأَةٍ سَأَلَتْ زَوْجَهَا طَلَاقًا فِي غَيْرِ مَا بَأْسٍ، فَحَرَامٌ عَلَيْهَا رَائِحَةُ الْجَنَّـة

Any woman who asks her husband for divorce without justification, then the scent of Paradise will be forbidden for her.

At-Tirmidhi recorded this Hadith and stated that it is Hasan.

Ibn Jarir said that; the Ayah (2:229) was revealed about Thabit bin Qays bin Shammas and his wife Habibah bint Abdullah bin Ubayy bin Salul.

In his Muwatta, Imam Malik reported that;

Habibah bint Sahl Al-Ansariyah was married to Thabit bin Qays bin Shammas and that Allah's Messenger once went to the Fajr (Dawn) prayer and found Habibah bint Sahl by his door in the dark. Allah's Messenger said, "Who is this?''

She said, "I am Habibah bint Sahl, O Messenger of Allah!''

He said, "What is the matter?''

She said, "I and Thabit bin Qays'', meaning, (she can no longer be with) her husband.

When her husband Thabit bin Qays came, Allah's Messenger said to him:

هذِهِ حَبِيبَةُ بِنْتُ سَهْلٍ قَدْ ذَكَرَتْ مَا شَاءَ اللهُ أَنْ تَذْكُر

This is Habibah bint Sahl, she said what Allah has permitted her to say.

Habibah also said, "O Messenger of Allah! I still have everything he gave me.''

Allah's Messenger said:

خُذْ مِنْهَا

Take it from her.

So, he took it from her and she remained in her family's house.''

This was reported by Ahmad, Abu Dawud and An-Nasa'i.

Al-Bukhari reported that;

Ibn Abbas said that the wife of Thabit bin Qays bin Shammas came to the Prophet and said, "O Messenger of Allah! I do not criticize his religion or mannerism. But I hate committing Kufr in Islam (by ignoring his rights on her).''

Allah's Messenger said:

أَتَرُدِّينَ عَلَيهِ حَدِيقَتَه

Will you give him back his garden?

She said, "Yes.''

Allah's Messenger said:

اقْبَلِ الْحَدِيقَةَ وَطَلِّقْهَا تَطْلِيقَة

Take back the garden and divorce her once.

An-Nasa'i also recorded it.

The `Iddah (Waiting Period) for the Khul"

At-Tirmidhi reported that;

Rubayi bint Mu`awwidh bin Afra got a Khul during the time of Allah's Messenger and the Prophet ordered her to wait for one menstruation period for Iddah.

Transgressing the set limits of Allah is an Injustice

Allah said:

... تِلْكَ حُدُودُ اللّهِ فَلاَ تَعْتَدُوهَا وَمَن يَتَعَدَّ حُدُودَ اللّهِ فَأُوْلَـئِكَ هُمُ الظَّالِمُونَ ﴿٢٢٩﴾  

These are the limits ordained by Allah, so do not transgress them. And whoever transgresses the limits ordained by Allah, then such are the wrongdoers.

This means that the laws that Allah has legislated are His set limits, so do not transgress them.

An authentic Hadith states:

إِنَّ اللهَ حَدَّ حُدُودًا فَلَا تَعْتَدُوهَا، وفَرَضَ فَرَائِضَ فَلَا تُضَيِّعُوهَا، وحَرَّمَ مَحَارِمَ فَلَا تَنْتَهِكُوهَا، وَسَكَتَ عَنْ أَشْيَاءَ رَحْمَةً لَكُمْ مِنْ غَيْرِ نِسْيَانٍ فَلَا تَسْأَلُوا عَنْهَا

Allah has set some limits, so do not transgress them; and commanded some commands, so do not ignore them; and made some things unlawful, so do not commit them. He has also left some matters (without rulings) as a mercy with you, not because He has forgotten them, so do not ask about them.

Pronouncing Three Divorces at the same Time is Unlawful

The last Ayah we mentioned was used as evidence to prove that it is not allowed to pronounce three divorces at one time. What further proves this ruling is that Mahmud bin Labid has stated - as An-Nasa'i recorded - that Allah's Messenger was told about a man who pronounced three divorces on his wife at one time, so the Prophet stood up while angry and said:

أَيُلْعَبُ بِكِتَابِ اللهِ وَأَنَا بَيْنَ أَظْهُرِكُم

The Book of Allah is being made the subject of jest while I am still amongst you.

A man then stood up and said, "Should I kill that man, O Messenger of Allah.''

The Wife cannot be taken back after the Third Divorce

Allah said:

فَإِن طَلَّقَهَا فَلاَ تَحِلُّ لَهُ مِن بَعْدُ حَتَّىَ تَنكِحَ زَوْجًا غَيْرَهُ ...

And if he has divorced her (the third time), then she is not lawful for him thereafter until she has married another husband.

This Ayah indicates that if the man divorces his wife for the third time after he divorced her twice, then she will no longer be allowed for marriage to him.

Allah said:

... حَتَّىَ تَنكِحَ زَوْجًا غَيْرَهُ ...

...until she has married another husband.

meaning, until she legally marries another man.

For instance, if she has sexual intercourse with any man, even her master (if she was a servant), she would still be ineligible for marriage for her ex-husband (who divorced her thrice), because whomever she had sexual relations with was not her legal husband.

If she marries a man without consummating the marriage, she will not be eligible for her ex-husband.

Muslim reported that Aishah said that;

Allah's Messenger was asked about a woman who marries a man who thereafter divorces her (thrice). She then marries another man and he divorces her before he has sexual relations with her, would she be allowed for her first husband?

Allah's Messenger said:

لَا، حَتَّى يَذُوقَ عُسَيْلَتَهَا

No, until he enjoys her Usaylah (sexual relation).

Al-Bukhari also reported this Hadith.

Imam Ahmad recorded that Aishah said,

"The wife of Rifa`ah Al-Qurazi came while I and Abu Bakr were with the Prophet and she said, `I was Rifa`ah's wife, but he divorced me and it was an irrevocable divorce. Then I married Abdur-Rahman bin Az-Zubayr, but his sexual organ is minute like a string.' She then took a small string of her garment (to resemble how small his sexual organ was).

Khalid bin Sa`id bin Al-`As, who was next to the door and was not yet allowed in, said, `O Abu Bakr! Why do you not forbid this (woman) from what she is revealing frankly before the Prophet?'

The Prophet merely smiled. Then, Allah's Messenger asked her:

كَأَنَّكِ تُرِيدِينَ أَنْ تَرْجِعِي إِلى رِفَاعَةَ، لَا، حَتَّى تَذُوقِي عُسَيْلَتَهُ، وَيَذُوقَ عُسَيْلَتَك

Do you want to remarry Rifa`ah? You cannot unless you experience his Usaylah and he experiences your Usaylah (i.e., had a complete sexual relation with your present husband).''

Al-Bukhari, Muslim, and An-Nasa'i also recorded this Hadith.

Muslim's wording is "Rifa`ah divorced his wife for the third and final time."

The word Usaylah mentioned in the Hadith, means sexual intercourse.

Imam Ahmad and An-Nasa'i reported that Aishah said that Allah's Messenger said:

أَلَا إِنَّ الْعُسَيْلَةَ الْجِمَاع

Usaylah is sexual intercourse.

The Curse on the Participants of Tahlil/Halalah

The reason for the woman (who was divorced thrice) to marry another man must be that the man desires her and has the intention of having an extended married life with her. These are the legal goals and aims behind marriage. If the reason behind the second marriage was to make the woman eligible for her ex-husband again, then this is the Tahlil that the Hadiths have cursed and criticized.

In addition, when the reason behind this marriage (if it was Tahlil) is announced in the contract, it would make the contract invalid according to the majority of the scholars.

Imam Ahmad reported that Abdullah bin Mas`ud said, "Allah's Messenger cursed the one who does Tahlil, the one in whose favor it is done, those who eat Riba (usury) and those who feed it (pay the usury).''

At-Tirmidhi and An-Nasa'i reported this Hadith and At-Tirmidhi said, "This Hadith is Hasan.''

He said, "This is what is acted upon according to people of knowledge among the Companions, among whom are Umar, Uthman and Ibn Umar.

It was also the saying of the scholars of Fiqh among the Tabi`in (second generation of Islam). And it has been reported from Ali, Ibn Mas`ud and Ibn Abbas.''

In his Mustadrak, Al-Hakim reported that Nafi said:

"A man came to Ibn Umar and asked him about a man who divorced his wife three times. Then, his brother married her to make Tahlil for his brother, without the brother knowing this fact. He then asked, "Is she allowed for the first (husband)?''

He said, "No, unless it is a marriage that involves desire. We used to consider this an act of adultery during the time of Allah's Messenger.''

Al-Hakim said, "This Hadith has a Sahih chain although they (Al-Bukhari and Muslim) did not record it.''

The wording of this Hadith indicates that the ruling came from the Prophet.

Abu Bakr bin Abu Shaybah, Al-Jawzjani, Harb Al-Kirmani and Abu Bakr Al-Athram said that Qabisah bin Jabir said that Umar said, "If the participants to Tahlil are brought to me, I will have them stoned.''

When does a Woman who was divorced Three Times become Eligible for Her First Husband

Allah said:

... فَإِن طَلَّقَهَا ...

And if he has divorced her,

meaning, the second husband after he had complete sexual relations with her.

... فَلاَ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْهِمَا أَن يَتَرَاجَعَا ...

it is no sin on both of them that they reunite,

meaning, the wife and her first husband.

... إِن ظَنَّا أَن يُقِيمَا حُدُودَ اللّهِ ...

provided they feel that they can keep the limits ordained by Allah.

meaning, they live together honorably.

Mujahid said, "If they are convinced that the aim behind their marriage is honorable.''

Next, Allah said:

... وَتِلْكَ حُدُودُ اللّهِ ...

These are the limits of Allah,

His commandments and legislation.

... يُبَيِّنُهَا ...

He makes plain,

... لِقَوْمٍ يَعْلَمُونَ ﴿٢٣٠﴾

for the people who have knowledge.

231

وَإِذَا طَلَّقْتُمُ النِّسَآءَ فَبَلَغْنَ أَجَلَهُنَّ فَأَمْسِكُوهُنَّ بِمَعْرُوفٍ أَوْ سَرِّحُوهُنَّ بِمَعْرُوفٍ

And when you have divorced women and they have fulfilled the term of their prescribed period, either take them back on a reasonable basis or set them free on a reasonable basis.

وَلاَ تُمْسِكُوهُنَّ ضِرَارًا لِّتَعْتَدُواْ وَمَن يَفْعَلْ ذَلِكَ فَقَدْ ظَلَمَ نَفْسَهُ

But do not take them back to hurt them, and whoever does that, then he has wronged himself.

وَلاَ تَتَّخِذُواْ آيَـتِ اللَّهِ هُزُوًا وَاذْكُرُواْ نِعْمَتَ اللَّهِ عَلَيْكُمْ وَمَآ أَنزَلَ عَلَيْكُم مِّنَ الْكِتَـبِ وَالْحِكْمَةِ يَعِظُكُم بِهِ

And treat not the verses (Laws) of Allah in jest, but remember Allah's favors on you (i.e., Islam), and that which He has sent down to you of the Book (i.e., the Qur'an) and Al-Hikmah (the Prophet's Sunnah ـ legal ways ـ Islamic jurisprudence) whereby He instructs you.

وَاتَّقُواْ اللَّهَ وَاعْلَمُواْ أَنَّ اللَّهَ بِكُلِّ شَىْءٍ عَلِيمٌ

And fear Allah, and know that Allah is All-Aware of everything

Being Kind to the Divorced Wife

Allah Says;

وَإِذَا طَلَّقْتُمُ النَّسَاء فَبَلَغْنَ أَجَلَهُنَّ فَأَمْسِكُوهُنَّ بِمَعْرُوفٍ أَوْ سَرِّحُوهُنَّ بِمَعْرُوفٍ ... 

And when you have divorced women and they have fulfilled the term of their prescribed period, either take them back on a reasonable basis or set them free on a reasonable basis.

This is a command from Allah to men that when one of them divorces his wife with a reversible divorce, he should treat her kindly. So when her term of Iddah (waiting period) nears its end, he either takes her back in a way that is better, including having witnesses that he has taken her back, and he lives with her with kindness. Or, he should release her after her Iddah finishes and then kindly asks her to depart from his house, without disputing, fighting with her or using foul words.

Allah then said:

... وَلاَ تُمْسِكُوهُنَّ ضِرَارًا لَّتَعْتَدُواْ ...

But do not take them back to hurt them,

Ibn Abbas, Mujahid, Masruq, Al-Hasan, Qatadah, Ad-Dahhak, Ar-Rabi and Muqatil bin Hayyan said that;

a man used to divorce his wife, and when her Iddah came near its end, he would take her back to harm her and to stop her from marrying someone else. He then divorced her and she would begin her Iddah and when her Iddah term neared its end, he would take her back again, so that the term of Iddah would be prolonged for her. After that, Allah prohibited this practice.

Allah has also threatened those who indulge in such practices, when He said;

... وَمَن يَفْعَلْ ذَلِكَ فَقَدْ ظَلَمَ نَفْسَهُ ...

...and whoever does that, then he has wronged himself.

meaning, by defying Allah's commandments.

Allah then said:

... وَلاَ تَتَّخِذُوَاْ آيَاتِ اللّهِ هُزُوًا ...

And treat not the verses (Laws) of Allah in a jest,

Ibn Jarir said that Abu Musa (Al-Ashari) narrated that;

Allah's Messenger once became angry at the Ashari tribe. Abu Musa went to him and said, "O Messenger of Allah! Are you angry with the Ash`ariyyin'' The Prophet said:

يَقُولُ أَحَدُكُمْ: قَدْ طَلَّقْتُ، قَدْ رَاجَعْتُ، لَيْسَ هَذَا طَلَاقُ الْمُسْلِمِينَ، طَلِّقُوا الْمَرْأَةَ فِي قُبُلِ عِدَّتِهَا

One of you says, `I divorced her' -then says- `I took her back!' This is not the appropriate way Muslims conduct divorce. Divorce the woman when she has fulfilled the term of the prescribed period.

Masruq said that; the Ayah refers to the man who harms his wife by divorcing her and then taking her back, so that the Iddah term is prolonged for her.

Al-Hasan, Qatadah, Ata Al-Khurasani, Ar-Rabi and Muqatil bin Hayyan said,

"He is the man who divorces his wife and says, `I was joking.' Or he frees a servant or gets married and says, `I was only joking.' Allah revealed: وَلاَ تَتَّخِذُوَاْ آيَاتِ اللّهِ هُزُوًا  (And treat not the verses (Laws) of Allah in a jest). Then such men were made to bear the consequences of their actions.

Allah then said:

... وَاذْكُرُواْ نِعْمَتَ اللّهِ عَلَيْكُمْ ...

...but remember Allah's favors on you,

meaning, by His sending His Messenger with the right guidance and clear signs to you.

... وَمَا أَنزَلَ عَلَيْكُمْ مِّنَ الْكِتَابِ وَالْحِكْمَةِ ...

...and that which He has sent down to you of the Book (i.e., the Qur'an) and Al-Hikmah) (meaning the Sunnah),

... يَعِظُكُم بِهِ ...

...whereby He instructs you.

meaning, commands you, forbids you and threatens you for transgressing His prohibitions.

Allah said:

... وَاتَّقُواْ اللّهَ ...

And fear Allah,

meaning, concerning what you perform and what you avoid.

... وَاعْلَمُواْ أَنَّ اللّهَ بِكُلِّ شَيْءٍ عَلِيمٌ ﴿٢٣١﴾

and know that Allah is All-Aware of everything.

none of your secret or public affairs ever escapes His knowledge, and He will treat you accordingly.

232

وَإِذَا طَلَّقْتُمُ النِّسَآءَ فَبَلَغْنَ أَجَلَهُنَّ فَلاَ تَعْضُلُوهُنَّ أَن يَنكِحْنَ أَزْوَجَهُنَّ إِذَا تَرَضَوْاْ بَيْنَهُم بِالْمَعْرُوفِ

And when you have divorced women and they have fulfilled the term of their prescribed period, do not prevent them from marrying their (former) husbands, if they mutually agree on reasonable basis.

ذلِكَ يُوعَظُ بِهِ مَن كَانَ مِنكُمْ يُؤْمِنُ بِاللَّهِ وَالْيَوْمِ الاٌّخِرِ

This (instruction) is an admonition for him among you who believes in Allah and the Last Day.

ذلِكُمْ أَزْكَى لَكُمْ وَأَطْهَرُ وَاللَّهُ يَعْلَمُ وَأَنتُمْ لاَ تَعْلَمُونَ

That is more virtuous and purer for you. Allah knows and you know not.

The Wali (Guardian) of the Divorced Woman should not prevent Her from going back to Her Husband

Allah says;

وَإِذَا طَلَّقْتُمُ النِّسَاء فَبَلَغْنَ أَجَلَهُنَّ فَلاَ تَعْضُلُوهُنَّ أَن يَنكِحْنَ أَزْوَاجَهُنَّ إِذَا تَرَاضَوْاْ بَيْنَهُم بِالْمَعْرُوفِ ...

And when you have divorced women and they have fulfilled the term of their prescribed period, do not prevent them from marrying their (former) husbands, if they mutually agree on reasonable basis.

Ali bin Abu Talhah reported that Ibn Abbas said,

"This Ayah was revealed about the man who divorces his wife once or twice and her Iddah finishes. He later thinks about taking her back in marriage and the woman also wishes that, yet, her family prevents her from remarrying him. Hence, Allah prohibited her family from preventing her.''

Masruq, Ibrahim An-Nakhai, Az-Zuhri and Ad-Dahhak stated that this is the reason behind revealing the Ayah.

These statements clearly conform to the apparent meaning of the Ayah.

There is no Marriage without a Wali (for the Woman)

The Ayah (2:232) also indicates that the woman is not permitted to give herself in marriage. Rather, she requires a Wali (guardian such as her father, brother, adult son, and so forth) to give her away in marriage, as Ibn Jarir and At-Tirmidhi have stated when they mentioned this Ayah.

Also, a Hadith states that:

لَا تُزَوِّجُ الْمَرْأةُ الْمَرْأَةَ، ولَا تُزَوِّج الْمَرأةُ نَفْسَهَا، فَإِنَّ الزَّانِيَةَ هِيَ الَّتِي تُزَوِّجُ نَفْسَهَا

The woman does not give another woman away for marriage and the woman does not give herself away in marriage, for only the adulteress gives herself away for marriage.

Another Hadith states:

لَا نِكَاحَ إلَّا بِوَلِيَ مُرْشِدٍ وَشَاهِدَيْ عَدْل

No marriage is valid except with the participation of a mature Wali and two trustworthy witnesses.

The Reason behind revealing the Ayah (2:232)

It was reported that; this Ayah was revealed about Ma`qil bin Yasar Al-Muzani and his sister.

Al-Bukhari reported in his Sahih, when he mentioned the Tafsir of this Ayah (2:232), that the husband of the sister of Ma`qil bin Yasar divorced her. He waited until her Iddah finished and then asked to remarry her, but Ma`qil refused. Then, this Ayah was sent down:  فَلاَ تَعْضُلُوهُنَّ أَن يَنكِحْنَ أَزْوَاجَهُنَّ  (...do not prevent them from marrying their (former) husbands).

Abu Dawud, At-Tirmidhi, Ibn Abu Hatim, Ibn Jarir and Ibn Marduwyah and Al-Bayhaqi reported this Hadith from Al-Hasan from Ma`qil bin Yasar.

At-Tirmidhi rendered this Hadith authentic and in his narration, Ma`qil bin Yasar gave his sister in marriage for a Muslim man during the time of Allah's Messenger. She remained with him for a while and he divorced her once and did not take her back until her Iddah finished. They then wanted to get back with each other and he came to ask her for marriage.

Ma`qil said to him, "O ungrateful one! I honored you and married her to you but you divorced her. By Allah! She will never be returned to you.''

But Allah knew his need for his wife and her need for her husband and He revealed: وَإِذَا طَلَّقْتُمُ النِّسَاء فَبَلَغْنَ أَجَلَهُنَّ  (And when you have divorced women and they have fulfilled the term of their prescribed period) until He said: وَأَنتُمْ لاَ تَعْلَمُونَ  (...and you know not).

When Ma`qil heard the Ayah, he said, "I hear and obey my Lord.''

He then summoned the man and said, "I will honor you and let you remarry (my sister).''

Ibn Marduwyah added (that Ma`qil said), "And will pay (the expiation) for breaking my vow.''

... ذَلِكَ يُوعَظُ بِهِ مَن كَانَ مِنكُمْ يُؤْمِنُ بِاللّهِ وَالْيَوْمِ الآخِرِ ...

This (instruction) is an admonition for him among you who believes in Allah and the Last Day.

meaning, prohibiting you from preventing the women from marrying their ex-husbands, if they both agree to it.

مَن كَانَ مِنكُمْ  (among you), O people, يُؤْمِنُ بِاللّهِ وَالْيَوْمِ الآخِرِ  (who believes in Allah and the Last Day) meaning, believes in Allah's commandments and fears His warnings and the torment in the Hereafter.

Allah said:

... ذَلِكُمْ أَزْكَى لَكُمْ وَأَطْهَرُ ...

That is more virtuous and purer for you.

meaning, obeying Allah's Law by returning the women to their ex-husbands, and abandoning your displeasure, is purer and cleaner for your hearts.

... وَاللّهُ يَعْلَمُ ...

Allah knows,

the benefits you gain from what He commands and what He forbids.

... وَأَنتُمْ لاَ تَعْلَمُونَ ﴿٢٣٢﴾

and you know not.

the benefits in what you do or what you refrain from doing.

233

وَالْوَلِدَتُ يُرْضِعْنَ أَوْلَـدَهُنَّ حَوْلَيْنِ كَامِلَيْنِ لِمَنْ أَرَادَ أَن يُتِمَّ الرَّضَاعَةَ وَعلَى الْمَوْلُودِ لَهُ رِزْقُهُنَّ وَكِسْوَتُهُنَّ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ

The mothers should suckle their children for two whole years, (that is) for those (parents) who desire to complete the term of suckling, but the father of the child shall bear the cost of the mother's food and clothing on a reasonable basis.

لاَ تُكَلَّفُ نَفْسٌ إِلاَّ وُسْعَهَا

No person shall have a burden laid on him greater than he can bear.

لاَ تُضَآرَّ وَلِدَةٌ بِوَلَدِهَا وَلاَ مَوْلُودٌ لَّهُ بِوَلَدِهِ

No mother shall be treated unfairly on account of her child, nor father on account of his child.

وَعَلَى الْوَارِثِ مِثْلُ ذلِكَ

And on the (father's) heir is incumbent the like of that (which was incumbent on the father).

فَإِنْ أَرَادَا فِصَالاً عَن تَرَاضٍ مِّنْهُمَا وَتَشَاوُرٍ فَلاَ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْهِمَا

If they both decide on weaning, by mutual consent, and after due consultation, there is no sin on them.

وَإِنْ أَرَدتُّمْ أَن تَسْتَرْضِعُواْ أَوْلَـدَكُمْ فَلاَ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْكُمْ إِذَا سَلَّمْتُم مَّآ ءَاتَيْتُم بِالْمَعْرُوفِ

And if you decide on a foster suckling-mother for your children, there is no sin on you, provided you pay (the mother) what you agreed (to give her) on a reasonable basis.

وَاتَّقُواْ اللَّهَ وَاعْلَمُواْ أَنَّ اللَّهَ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ بَصِيرٌ

And fear Allah and know that Allah is All-Seer of what you do.  

The Suckling Period is only Two Years

Allah says;

وَالْوَالِدَاتُ يُرْضِعْنَ أَوْلاَدَهُنَّ حَوْلَيْنِ كَامِلَيْنِ لِمَنْ أَرَادَ أَن يُتِمَّ الرَّضَاعَةَ ...

The mothers should suckle their children for two whole years, (that is) for those (parents) who desire to complete the term of suckling,

This is a direction from Allah to the mothers to suckle their infants through the complete term of suckling, which is two years. Hence, suckling after two years is not included in this address.

Allah said: لِمَنْ أَرَادَ أَن يُتِمَّ الرَّضَاعَةَ  (...who desire to complete the term of suckling),

Therefore, the suckling that establishes Tahrim (prohibition, i.e., one cannot marry his mother or sister from suckling) is what occurs before the two years end. If the infant is suckled only after two years of age, then no Tahrim will be established.

At-Tirmidhi under Chapter: `Suckling establishes Tahrim within the first two years,' reported that Umm Salamah narrated that Allah's Messenger said:

لَا يَحْرُمُ مِنَ الرَّضَاعِ إِلَّا مَا فَتَقَ الْأَمْعَاءَ فِي الثَّدْيِ وَكَانَ قَبْلَ الْفِطَام

Suckling establishes Tahrim if it is on the breast and before Fitam (before weaning, i.e., before the end of the first two years).

At-Tirmidhi said, "This Hadith is Hasan Sahih.

The majority of the people of knowledge among the Companions of Allah's Messenger and others acted upon this, that is that suckling establishes Tahrim (prohibition in marriage) before the end of the two years and that whatever occurs after that does not establish Tahrim.

At-Tirmidhi is alone in recording this Hadith and the narrators in its chain meet the criteria of the Sahihayn.

The Prophet's statement: إِلَّا مَا كَانَ فِي الثَّدْي (On the breast), refers to the organ of suckling before the two years.

Imam Ahmad reported a Hadith in which Al-Bara bin Azib narrated,

"When Ibrahim, the Prophet's son, died, the Prophet said:

إِنَّ ابْنِي مَاتَ فِي الثَّدْيِ، إِنَّ لَهُ مُرْضِعًا فِي الْجَنَّـة

My son has died on the breast and he has someone to suckle him in Paradise.

Furthermore, Ad-Daraqutni related that Ibn Abbas said that Allah's Messenger said:

لَا يَحْرُمُ مِنَ الرَّضَاعِ إِلَّا مَا كَانَ فِي الْحَوْلَيْن

Suckling establishes Tahrim only within the (first) two years.

Imam Malik reported this Hadith from Thawr bin Zayd who narrated that Ibn Abbas related it to the Prophet.

Ad-Darawardi reported this Hadith from Thawr who narrated it from Ikrimah who narrated it from Ibn Abbas. In this narration, which is more authentic, he added:

وَمَا كَانَ بَعْدَ الْحَوْلَيْنِ فَليْسَ بِشَيْء

Whatever occurs after the two years is not considered.

Suckling beyond the Two Years

It is reported in the Sahih that;

Aishah thought that if a woman gives her milk to an older person (meaning beyond the age of two years) then this will establish Tahrim.

This is also the opinion of Ata bin Abu Rabah and Layth bin Sa`d.

Hence, Aishah thought that it is permissible to suckle the man whom the woman needs to be allowed in her house. She used as evidence the Hadith of Salim, the freed slave of Abu Hudhayfah, where the Prophet ordered Abu Hudhayfah's wife to give some of her milk to Salim, although he was a man, and ever since then, he used to enter her house freely.

However, the rest of the Prophet's wives did not agree with this opinion and thought that this was only a special case.

This is also the opinion of the majority of the scholars.

Suckling for Monetary Compensation

Allah said:

... وَعلَى الْمَوْلُودِ لَهُ رِزْقُهُنَّ وَكِسْوَتُهُنَّ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ ...

...but the father of the child shall bear the cost of the mother's food and clothing on a reasonable basis.

meaning, the father of the baby is obliged to provide for the expenses of the mother and to buy her clothes, in reasonable amounts usually used by similar women in that area, without extravagance or stinginess. The father spends within his means in this case.

Allah said in another Ayah:

لِيُنفِقْ ذُو سَعَةٍ مِّن سَعَتِهِ وَمَن قُدِرَ عَلَيْهِ رِزْقُهُ فَلْيُنفِقْ مِمَّآ ءَاتَاهُ اللَّهُ لاَ يُكَلِّفُ اللَّهُ نَفْساً إِلاَّ مَآ ءَاتَاهَا سَيَجْعَلُ اللَّهُ بَعْدَ عُسْرٍ يُسْراً

Let the rich man spend according to his means; 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)

Ad-Dahhak commented,

"If the husband divorces his wife, with whom he had a child, and she suckles that child, he is required to provide for the mother's expenses and clothes within reason.''

... لاَ تُكَلَّفُ نَفْسٌ إِلاَّ وُسْعَهَا ...

No person shall have a burden laid on him greater than he can bear.

No Darar (Harm) or Dirar (Revenge)

Allah said:

... لاَ تُضَآرَّ وَالِدَةٌ بِوَلَدِهَا ...

No mother shall be treated unfairly on account of her child,

meaning, the mother should not decline to rear her child to harm its father. The mother does not have the right to refrain from suckling the child after giving birth, unless she suckles him/her the milk that is necessary for his/her survival. Later on, she is allowed to give up custody of the child as long as she does not do that intending to harm the father.

In addition, the father is not allowed to take the child from his mother to harm the mother.

This is why Allah said:

... وَلاَ مَوْلُودٌ لَّهُ بِوَلَدِهِ ...

...nor father on account of his child.

meaning, by taking the child from its mother intending to harm the mother.

This is the Tafsir of Mujahid, Qatadah, Ad-Dahhak, Az-Zuhri, As-Suddi, Ath-Thawri and Ibn Zayd, and others on this Ayah.

Allah then said:

... وَعَلَى الْوَارِثِ مِثْلُ ذَلِكَ ...

And on the (father's) heir is incumbent the like of that (which was incumbent on the father).

Mujahid, Ash-Sha`bi and Ad-Dahhak stated,meaning, by refraining from harming the relative (of the father, i.e., his infant).

It was also reported that; (the Ayah requires) the inheritor (of the father) to spend on the mother of the child, just as the father was spending, and to preserve her rights and refrain from harming her, according to the Tafsir of the majority of the scholars.

We should state that;

Ibn Jarir has explained this subject in detail in his Tafsir and that he also stated that suckling the child after the second year might harm the child's body and mind.

Sufyan Ath-Thawri narrated that,

Alqamah asked a woman who was suckling her child after the second year ended, not to do that.

Fitam (weaning) occurs by Mutual Consent

Allah said:

... فَإِنْ أَرَادَا فِصَالاً عَن تَرَاضٍ مِّنْهُمَا وَتَشَاوُرٍ فَلاَ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْهِمَا ...

If they both decide on weaning, by mutual consent, and after due consultation, there is no sin on them.

This Ayah indicates that if the father and the mother decide on the Fitam (weaning) before the two years (of suckling) end, and for a benefit that they duly discuss and agree upon, then there is no sin in this case.

So, the Ayah indicates that one parent is not allowed to make this kind of decision without duly consulting the other parent, as stated by Ath-Thawri.

The method of mutual consultation protects the child's interests. It is also a mercy from Allah to His servants, for He has legislated the best method for parents to rear their children, and His legislation guides and directs the parents and the children to success.

Similarly, Allah said in Surah At-Talaq,

فَإِنْ أَرْضَعْنَ لَكُمْ فَـَاتُوهُنَّ أُجُورَهُنَّ وَأْتَمِرُواْ بَيْنَكُمْ بِمَعْرُوفٍ وَإِن تَعَاسَرْتُمْ فَسَتُرْضِعُ لَهُ أُخْرَى

Then if they give suck to the children for you, give them their due payment, and let each of you accept the advice of the other in a just way. But if you make difficulties for one another, then some other woman may give suck for him (the father of the child). (65:6)

Allah then said:

... وَإِنْ أَرَدتُّمْ أَن تَسْتَرْضِعُواْ أَوْلاَدَكُمْ فَلاَ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْكُمْ إِذَا سَلَّمْتُم مَّآ آتَيْتُم بِالْمَعْرُوفِ ...

And if you decide on a foster suckling-mother for your children, there is no sin on you, provided you pay (the mother) what you agreed (to give her) on a reasonable basis.

meaning, if the mother and the father both agree that the father assumes custody of the child due to a circumstance that compels her or allows him to do so, then there is no sin in this case.

Hence, the mother is allowed to give up the child and the father is allowed to assume custody of the child.

The father should kindly give the mother her expenses for the previous period (during which she reared and suckled the child), and he should seek other women to suckle his child for monetary compensation.

Thereafter, Allah said:

... وَاتَّقُواْ اللّهَ ...

And fear Allah,

meaning, in all of your affairs.

... وَاعْلَمُواْ أَنَّ اللّهَ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ بَصِيرٌ ﴿٢٣٣﴾

And know that Allah is All-Seer of what you do.

meaning, none of your affairs or speech escapes His perfect Watch.

234

وَالَّذِينَ يُتَوَفَّوْنَ مِنكُمْ وَيَذَرُونَ أَزْوَجًا يَتَرَبَّصْنَ بِأَنفُسِهِنَّ أَرْبَعَةَ أَشْهُرٍ وَعَشْرًا فَإِذَا بَلَغْنَ أَجَلَهُنَّ فَلاَ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْكُمْ فِيمَا فَعَلْنَ فِى أَنفُسِهِنَّ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ

And those of you who die and leave wives behind them, they (the wives) shall wait (as regards their marriage) for four months and ten days, then when they have fulfilled their term, there is no sin on you if they (the wives) dispose of themselves in a (just and) honorable manner (i.e., they can marry).

وَاللَّهُ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ خَبِيرٌ

And Allah is well-acquainted with what you do.

 The Iddah (Waiting Period) of the Widow

Allah says;

وَالَّذِينَ يُتَوَفَّوْنَ مِنكُمْ وَيَذَرُونَ أَزْوَاجًا يَتَرَبَّصْنَ بِأَنفُسِهِنَّ أَرْبَعَةَ أَشْهُرٍ وَعَشْرًا ...

And those of you who die and leave wives behind them, they (the wives) shall wait (as regards their marriage) for four months and ten days,

This Ayah contains a command from Allah to the wives whose husbands die, that they should observe a period of Iddah of four months and ten nights, including the cases where the marriage was consummated or otherwise, according to the consensus (of the scholars).

The proof that this ruling includes the case where the marriage was not consummated is included in the general meaning of the Ayah.

In a narration recorded by Imam Ahmad and the compilers of the Sunan, which At-Tirmidhi graded Sahih,

Ibn Mas`ud was asked about a man who married a woman, but he died before consummating the marriage. He also did not appoint a Mahr (dowry) for her. They kept asking Ibn Mas`ud about this subject until he said,

"I shall give you my own opinion, and if it is correct then it is from Allah, while if it is wrong it is because of my error and because of (the evil efforts of) Satan. In this case, Allah and His Messenger are innocent of my opinion. She has her full Mahr.''

In another narration, Ibn Mas`ud said,

"She has a similar Mahr to that of the women of her status, without stinginess or extravagance.''

He then continued, "She has to spend the Iddah and has a right to the inheritance.''

Ma`qil bin Yasar Ashja`i then stood up and said, "I heard Allah's Messenger issue a similar judgment for the benefit of Barwa` bint Washiq.''

Abdullah bin Mas`ud became very delighted upon hearing this statement.

In another narration, several men from Ashja (tribe) stood up and said, "We testify that Allah's Messenger issued a similar ruling for the benefit of Barwa bint Washiq.''

As for the case of the widow whose husband dies while she is pregnant, her term of Iddah ends when she gives birth, even if it occurs an instant (after her husband dies). This ruling is taken from Allah's statement:

وَأُوْلَـتُ الاٌّحْمَالِ أَجَلُهُنَّ أَن يَضَعْنَ حَمْلَهُنَّ

And for those who are pregnant, their Iddah is until they lay down their burden. (65:4)

There is also a Hadith from Subay`ah Al-Aslamiyah in the Two Sahihs, through various chains of narration.

Her husband, Sa`d bin Khawlah, died while she was pregnant and she gave birth only a few nights after his death. When she finished her Nifas (postnatal period), she beautified herself for those who might seek to engage her (for marriage).

Then, Abu Sanabil bin Ba`kak came to her and said, "Why do I see you beautified yourself, do you wish to marry? By Allah! You will not marry until the four months and ten nights have passed.''

Subay`ah said, "When he said that to me, I collected my garments when night fell and went to Allah's Messenger and asked him about this matter.

He said that my Iddah had finished when I gave birth and allowed me to get married if I wished.''

The Wisdom behind legislating the Iddah

Sa`id bin Musayyib and Abu Al-Aliyah stated that; the wisdom behind making the Iddah of the widow four months and ten nights is that the womb might contain a fetus. When the woman waits for this period, it will become evident if she is pregnant.

Similarly, there is a Hadith in the Two Sahihs narrated by Ibn Mas`ud stating:

إنَّ خَلْقَ أَحَدِكُمْ يُجْمَعُ فِي بَطْنِ أُمِّهِ أَرْبَعِينَ يَوْمًا نُطْفَةً، ثُمَّ يَكُونُ عَلَقَةً مِثْلَ ذلِكَ، ثُمَّ يَكُونُ مُضْغَةً مِثْلَ ذلِكَ، ثُمَّ يُبْعَثُ إِلَيْهِ الْمَلَكُ فَيَنْفُخُ فِيهِ الرُّوح

(The creation of) a human being is put together in the womb of his mother in forty days in the form of a seed, and next he becomes a clot of thick blood for a similar period, and next a morsel of flesh for a similar period. Then, Allah sends an angel who is ordered to breathe life unto the fetus.

So, these are four months and ten more days to be sure, as some months are less (than thirty days), and the fetus will then start to show signs of life after the soul has been breathed into it.

Allah knows best.

The Iddah of the Slave Mother whose Master dies

We should state here that; the Iddah of the slave mother is the same in the case of death, as the Iddah of the free woman.

Imam Ahmad reported that `Amr bin Al-`As said, "Do not confuse the Sunnah of our Prophet for us. The Iddah of the mother, who is also a servant, when her master dies, is four months and ten nights.''

Mourning is required during the Iddah of Death

Allah said:

... فَإِذَا بَلَغْنَ أَجَلَهُنَّ فَلاَ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْكُمْ فِيمَا فَعَلْنَ فِي أَنفُسِهِنَّ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ وَاللّهُ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ خَبِيرٌ ﴿٢٣٤﴾

...then when they have fulfilled their term, there is no sin on you if they (the wives) dispose of themselves in a (just and) honorable manner (i.e., they can marry). And Allah is well-acquainted with what you do.

This Ayah indicates that mourning for the dead husband is required until the Iddah is finished.

It is also reported in the Two Sahihs that Umm Habibah and Zaynab bint Jahsh narrated that Allah's Messenger said:

لَا يَحِلُّ لِامْرَأَةٍ تُؤْمِنُ بِاللهِ وَالْيَوْم الآخِر أن تُحِدَّ عَلى مَيِتٍ فَوْقَ ثَلَاثٍ، إِلَّا عَلى زَوْجٍ أَرْبَعَةَ أَشْهُرٍ وَعَشْرًا

It is not lawful for a woman who believes in Allah and the Last Day to mourn for more than three days for any dead person except her husband, for whom she mourns for four months and ten days.

It is reported in the Two Sahihs that Umm Salamah said that;

a woman said, "O Messenger of Allah! My daughter's husband died and she is complaining about her eye, should we administer kohl in her eye?''

He said, "No,'' several times upon repeating this question.

He then said:

إنَّمَا هِيَ أَرْبَعَةُ أَشْهُرٍ وَعَشْرٌ، وَقَدْ كَانَتْ إِحْدَاكُنَّ فِي الْجَاهِلِيَّةِ تَمْكُثُ سَنَة

It is four months and ten (nights)! During the Jahiliyyah, one of you would mourn for an entire year.

Zaiynab the daughter of Umm Salamah said (about the pre-Islamic era of ignorance),

"When the woman's husband died, she would go into seclusion and would wear the worst clothes she has. She would refrain from wearing perfume or any adornments until a year passed. She would then come out of seclusion and would be given dung that she would throw. Then an animal would be brought out, a donkey, a sheep, or a bird. Then some blood would be drained from it, usually resulting in its death.''

In short, the mourning required from a wife whose husband dies, includes not using beautification aids, such as wearing perfume and the clothes and jewelry that encourage the men to seek marriage from the woman. All widows must observe this period of mourning whether they are young, old, free, servant, Muslim or disbeliever, as the general meaning of the Ayah indicates.

Allah also said:

... فَإِذَا بَلَغْنَ أَجَلَهُنَّ ...

...then when they have fulfilled their term,

According to Ad-Dahhak and Ar-Rabi bin Anas,meaning, when the Iddah finishes.

... فَلاَ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْكُمْ ...

there is no sin on you,

Az-Zuhri said, "Meaning her Wali (guardian).''

... فِيمَا فَعَلْنَ ...

if they (the wives) dispose,

meaning, the women whose Iddah has finished.

Al-Awfi said that Ibn Abbas said,

"If the woman is divorced or if her husband dies and then her Iddah term ends, there is no sin that she beautifies herself, so that she becomes ready for marriage proposals. This is the way `that is just and honorable'.''

It was reported that Muqatil bin Hayyan gave the same explanation.

Ibn Jurayj related that Mujahid said: فَلاَ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْكُمْ فِيمَا فَعَلْنَ فِي أَنفُسِهِنَّ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ  (...there is no sin on you if they (the wives) dispose of themselves in a just and honorable manner), "refers to allowed and pure (honorable) marriage.''

It was also reported that Al-Hasan, Az-Zuhri and As-Suddi said the same.

235

وَلاَ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْكُمْ فِيمَا عَرَّضْتُم بِهِ مِنْ خِطْبَةِ النِّسَآءِ أَوْ أَكْنَنتُمْ فِى أَنفُسِكُمْ عَلِمَ اللَّهُ أَنَّكُمْ سَتَذْكُرُونَهُنَّ وَلَـكِن لاَّ تُوَاعِدُوهُنَّ سِرًّا إِلاَّ أَن تَقُولُواْ قَوْلاً مَّعْرُوفًا

And there is no sin on you if you make a hint of betrothal or conceal it in yourself, Allah knows that you will remember them, but do not make a promise (of contract) with them in secret except that you speak an honorable saying.

وَلاَ تَعْزِمُواْ عُقْدَةَ النِّكَاحِ حَتَّى يَبْلُغَ الْكِتَـبُ أَجَلَهُ

And do not be determined on the marriage bond until the term prescribed is fulfilled.

وَاعْلَمُواْ أَنَّ اللَّهَ يَعْلَمُ مَا فِى أَنفُسِكُمْ فَاحْذَرُوهُ وَاعْلَمُواْ أَنَّ اللَّهَ غَفُورٌ حَلِيمٌ

And know that Allah knows what is in your minds, so fear Him. And know that Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Forbearing.  

Mentioning Marriage indirectly during the Iddah

Allah said:

وَلاَ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْكُمْ فِيمَا عَرَّضْتُم بِهِ مِنْ خِطْبَةِ النِّسَاء ...

And there is no sin on you if you make a hint of betrothal,

وَلاَ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْكُمْ (And there is no sin on you) meaning, to indirectly mention marriage to the widow during the term of Iddah for her deceased husband.

Ath-Thawri, Shu`bah and Jarir stated that Ibn Abbas said: وَلاَ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْكُمْ فِيمَا عَرَّضْتُم بِهِ مِنْ خِطْبَةِ النِّسَاء (And there is no sin on you if you make a hint of betrothal), "means saying, `I want to marry and I am looking for a woman whose qualities are such and such,' thus talking to her in general terms in a way that is better.''

In another narration (by Ibn Abbas), "Saying, `I wish that Allah endows me with a wife,' but he should not make a direct marriage proposal.''

Al-Bukhari reported that Ibn Abbas said that the Ayah: وَلاَ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْكُمْ فِيمَا عَرَّضْتُم بِهِ مِنْ خِطْبَةِ النِّسَاء (And there is no sin on you if you make a hint of betrothal) means,

"The man could say, `I wish to marry,' `I desire a wife,' or, `I wish I could find a good wife'.''

Mujahid, Tawus, Ikrimah, Sa`id bin Jubayr, Ibrahim An-Nakhai, Ash-Sha`bi, Al-Hasan, Qatadah, Az-Zuhri, Yazid bin Qusayt, Muqatil bin Hayyan and Al-Qasim bin Muhammad and several others among the Salaf and the Imams said that; one is allowed to mention marriage indirectly to the woman whose husband died.

It is also allowed to indirectly mention marriage to a woman who had gone through final, irrevocable divorce. The Prophet ordered Fatimah bint Qays to remain in the house of Ibn Umm Maktum for Iddah when her husband Abu `Amr bin Hafs divorced her for the third time. He said to her:

فَإِذَا حَلَلْتِ فَآذِنِينِي

Inform me when your Iddah term ends.

When she finished the Iddah, Usamah bin Zayd, the Prophet's freed slave asked to marry her, and the Prophet married her to him.

As for the divorced wife (not irrevocably divorced), there is no disagreement that it is not allowed for other than her husband to mention marriage proposals to her directly or indirectly (before the Iddah finishes).

Allah knows best.

Allah said:

... أَوْ أَكْنَنتُمْ فِي أَنفُسِكُمْ ...

...or conceal it in yourself,

meaning, if you hide the intention of seeking marriage with them.

Similarly, Allah said:

وَرَبُّكَ يَعْلَمُ مَا تُكِنُّ صُدُورُهُمْ وَمَا يُعْلِنُونَ

And your Lord knows what their breasts conceal, and what they reveal. (28:69)

and,

وَأَنَاْ أَعْلَمُ بِمَآ أَخْفَيْتُمْ وَمَآ أَعْلَنتُمْ

...while I am All-Aware of what you conceal and what you reveal. (60:1)

So, Allah said here:

... عَلِمَ اللّهُ أَنَّكُمْ سَتَذْكُرُونَهُنَّ ...

Allah knows that you will remember them,

meaning, in your hearts, so He made it easy for you.

Allah then said:

... وَلَـكِن لاَّ تُوَاعِدُوهُنَّ سِرًّا ...

...but do not make a promise (of contract) with them in secret.

Ali bin Abu Talhah reported that Ibn Abbas said that the Ayah means, do not say to her, "I am in love (with you),'' or,

"Promise me you will not marry someone else (after the Iddah finishes),'' and so forth.

Sa`id bin Jubayr, Ash-Sha`bi, Ikrimah, Abu Ad-Duha, Ad-Dahhak, Az-Zuhri, Mujahid and Ath-Thawri said that, it (meaning of the Ayah) means taking the woman's promise not to marry someone else.

Afterwards, Allah said:

... إِلاَّ أَن تَقُولُواْ قَوْلاً مَّعْرُوفًا ...

...except that you speak an honorable saying.

Ibn Abbas, Mujahid, Sa`id bin Jubayr, As-Suddi, Ath-Thawri and Ibn Zayd said that; the Ayah means to indirectly refer to marriage, such as saying, "I desire someone like you.''

Muhammad bin Sirin said:

I asked Ubaydah about the meaning of Allah's statement:  إِلاَّ أَن تَقُولُواْ قَوْلاً مَّعْرُوفًا (...except that you speak an honorable saying),

He said, "He says to her Wali, `Do not give her away (in marriage) until you inform me first'.''

This statement was narrated by Ibn Abu Hatim.

Allah then said:

... وَلاَ تَعْزِمُواْ عُقْدَةَ النِّكَاحِ حَتَّىَ يَبْلُغَ الْكِتَابُ أَجَلَهُ ...

And do not be determined on the marriage bond until the term prescribed is fulfilled.

meaning, do not make marriage contracts before the Iddah finishes.

Ibn Abbas, Mujahid, Ash-Sha`bi, Qatadah, Ar-Rabi bin Anas, Abu Malik, Zayd bin Aslam, Muqatil bin Hayyan, Az-Zuhri, Ata Al-Khurasani, As-Suddi, Ath-Thawri and Ad-Dahhak said that: حَتَّىَ يَبْلُغَ الْكِتَابُ أَجَلَهُ  (until the term prescribed is fulfilled) means,

`Do not consummate the marriage before the Iddah term finishes.'

The scholars agree that marriage contracts during the Iddah are invalid.

Allah then said:

... وَاعْلَمُواْ أَنَّ اللّهَ يَعْلَمُ مَا فِي أَنفُسِكُمْ فَاحْذَرُوهُ ...

And know that Allah knows what is in your minds, so fear Him.

warning the men against the ideas they conceal in their hearts about women, directing them to think good about them rather than the evil, and Allah would not let them despair of His mercy, as He said:

... وَاعْلَمُواْ أَنَّ اللّهَ غَفُورٌ حَلِيمٌ ﴿٢٣٥﴾

And know that Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Forbearing.

236

لاَّ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْكُمْ إِن طَلَّقْتُمُ النِّسَآءَ مَا لَمْ تَمَسُّوهُنَّ أَوْ تَفْرِضُواْ لَهُنَّ فَرِيضَةً وَمَتِّعُوهُنَّ عَلَى الْمُوسِعِ قَدَرُهُ وَعَلَى الْمُقْتِرِ قَدْرُهُ مَتَـعاً بِالْمَعْرُوفِ حَقًّا عَلَى الْمُحْسِنِينَ

There is no sin on you, if you divorce women while yet you have not touched them, nor appointed for them their due (dowry). But give them a Mut`ah (a suitable gift), the rich according to his means, and the poor according to his means, a gift of reasonable amount is a duty on the doers of good.

Allah says;

لاَّ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْكُمْ إِن طَلَّقْتُمُ النِّسَاء مَا لَمْ تَمَسُّوهُنُّ أَوْ تَفْرِضُواْ لَهُنَّ فَرِيضَةً وَمَتِّعُوهُنَّ  عَلَى الْمُوسِعِ قَدَرُهُ وَعَلَى الْمُقْتِرِ قَدْرُهُ مَتَاعًا بِالْمَعْرُوفِ حَقًّا عَلَى الْمُحْسِنِينَ ﴿٢٣٦﴾

There is no sin on you, if you divorce women while yet you have not touched them, nor appointed for them their due (dowry). But give them a Mut`ah (a suitable gift), the rich according to his means, and the poor according to his means, a gift of reasonable amount is a duty on the doers of good.

Allah allowed divorce after the marriage contract and before consummating the marriage.

Ibn Abbas, Tawus, Ibrahim and Al-Hasan Al-Basri said that; `touched' (mentioned in the Ayah) means sexual intercourse.

The husband is allowed to divorce his wife before consummating the marriage or giving the dowry if it was deferred.

The Mut`ah (Gift) at the time of Divorce

Allah commands the husband to give the wife (whom he divorces before consummating the marriage) a gift of a reasonable amount, the rich according to his means and the poor according to his means, to compensate her for her loss.

Al-Bukhari reported in his Sahih that Sahl bin Sa`d and Abu Usayd said that;

Allah's Messenger married Umaymah bint Sharahil. When she was brought to the Prophet he extended his hand to her, but she did not like that. The Prophet then ordered Abu Usayd to provide provisions for her along with a gift of two garments.

237

وَإِن طَلَّقْتُمُوهُنَّ مِن قَبْلِ أَن تَمَسُّوهُنَّ وَقَدْ فَرَضْتُمْ لَهُنَّ فَرِيضَةً فَنِصْفُ مَا فَرَضْتُمْ إَلاَّ أَن يَعْفُونَ أَوْ يَعْفُوَ الَّذِي بِيَدِهِ عُقْدَةُ النِّكَاحِ

And if you divorce them before you have touched (had a sexual relation with) them, and you have appointed for them their due (dowry), then pay half of that, unless they (the women) agree to remit it, or he (the husband), in whose hands is the marriage tie, agrees to remit it.

وَأَن تَعْفُواْ أَقْرَبُ لِلتَّقْوَى وَلاَ تَنسَوُاْ الْفَضْلَ بَيْنَكُمْ إِنَّ اللّهَ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ بَصِيرٌ

And to remit is nearer to At-Taqwa (piety, righteousness). And do not forget liberality between yourselves. Truly, Allah is All-Seer of what you do.

The Wife gets half of Her Mahr if She is divorced before the Marriage is consummated

Allah says;

وَإِن طَلَّقْتُمُوهُنَّ مِن قَبْلِ أَن تَمَسُّوهُنَّ وَقَدْ فَرَضْتُمْ لَهُنَّ فَرِيضَةً فَنِصْفُ مَا فَرَضْتُمْ ...

And if you divorce them before you have touched (had a sexual relation with) them, and you have appointed for them their due (dowry), then pay half of that,

This honorable Ayah is not a continuation of the Mut`ah (gift) that was mentioned in the previous Ayah (i.e., divorce before the marriage is consummated).

This Ayah requires the husband to relinquish half of the appointed Mahr if he divorces his wife before the marriage is consummated. If it was discussing any other type of gift, then it would have been mentioned that way, especially when this Ayah follows the previous Ayah related to this subject. Allah knows best.

Giving away half of the bridal-money in this case is the agreed practice according to the scholars. So, the husband pays half of the appointed Mahr if he divorces his wife before consummating the marriage.

Allah then said:

... إَلاَّ أَن يَعْفُونَ ...

unless they (the women) agree to remit it,

meaning, the wife forfeits the dowry and relieves the husband from further financial responsibility.

As-Suddi said that Abu Salih mentioned that Ibn Abbas commented on Allah's statement: "Unless the wife forfeits her right.''

Furthermore, Imam Abu Muhammad bin Abu Hatim said that it was reported that Shurayh, Sa`id bin Musayyib, Ikrimah, Mujahid, Ash-Sha`bi, Al-Hasan, Nafi, Qatadah, Jabir bin Zayd, Ata' Al-Khurasani, Ad-Dahhak, Az-Zuhri, Muqatil bin Hayyan, Ibn Sirin, Ar-Rabi bin Anas and As-Suddi said similarly.

Allah then said:

... أَوْ يَعْفُوَ الَّذِي بِيَدِهِ عُقْدَةُ النِّكَاحِ ...

...or he (the husband), in whose hands is the marriage tie, agrees to remit it.

Ibn Abu Hatim reported that Amr bin Shu`ayb said that his grandfather narrated that the Prophet said:

وَلِيُّ عُقْدَةِ النِّكَاحِ الزَّوْج

The husband is he who has the marriage tie.

Ibn Marduwyah also reported this Hadith, and it is the view chosen by Ibn Jarir.

The Hadith states that the husband is the person who really holds the marriage tie in his hand, as it is up to him to go on with the marriage or end it. On the other hand, the Wali of the wife is not allowed to give away any of her rightful dues without her permission, especially the dowry.

Allah then stated:

... وَأَن تَعْفُواْ أَقْرَبُ لِلتَّقْوَى ...

And to remit it is nearer to At-Taqwa (piety, righteousness).

Ibn Jarir said, "Some scholars said that this statement is directed at both men and women.''

Ibn Abbas said: وَأَن تَعْفُواْ أَقْرَبُ لِلتَّقْوَى  "(And to remit it is nearer to At-Taqwa (piety, righteousness)), indicates that the one who forgives, is nearer to At-Taqwa (piety).''

A similar statement was made by Ash-Sha`bi and several other scholars.

Mujahid, An-Nakhai, Ad-Dahhak, Muqatil bin Hayyan, Ar-Rabi bin Anas and Thawri stated that;

`liberality' mentioned in the Ayah refers to the woman giving away her half Mahr, or the man giving away the full Mahr. This is why Allah said here:

... وَلاَ تَنسَوُاْ الْفَضْلَ بَيْنَكُمْ ...

And do not forget liberality between yourselves.

meaning, kindness (or generosity), as Sa`id has stated.

Allah said:

... إِنَّ اللّهَ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ بَصِيرٌ ﴿٢٣٧﴾

Truly, Allah is All-Seer of what you do.

meaning, none of your affairs ever escapes His perfect Watch, and He will reward each according to his deeds.

238

حَـفِظُواْ عَلَى الصَّلَوَتِ والصَّلَوةِ الْوُسْطَى وَقُومُواْ لِلَّهِ قَـنِتِينَ

Guard strictly (five obligatory) As-Salawat (the prayers) especially the Middle Salah. And stand before Allah with obedience.

239

فَإنْ خِفْتُمْ فَرِجَالاً أَوْ رُكْبَانًا

And if you fear (an enemy), (perform Salah) on foot or riding.

فَإِذَآ أَمِنتُمْ فَاذْكُرُواْ اللَّهَ كَمَا عَلَّمَكُم مَّا لَمْ تَكُونُواْ تَعْلَمُونَ

And when you are in safety, then remember Allah (pray) in the manner He has taught you, which you knew not (before).

Allah says;

حَافِظُواْ عَلَى الصَّلَوَاتِ والصَّلاَةِ الْوُسْطَى ...  

Guard strictly (five obligatory) As-Salawat (the prayers) especially the Middle Salah. And stand before Allah with obedience.

Allah commands that the prayer should be performed properly and on time.

It is reported in the Two Sahihs that Ibn Mas`ud said, "I asked the Prophet, `Which deed is the dearest (to Allah)?'

He replied:

الصَّلَاةُ عَلى وَقْتِها

To offer the prayers at their fixed times.

I asked, `What is the next (in goodness)?'

He replied:

الصَّلَاةُ عَلى وَقْتِها

To offer the prayers at their fixed times.

I asked, `What is the next (in goodness)?'

He replied:

الْجِهَادُ فِي سَبِيلِ الله

To participate in Jihad (religious fighting) in Allah's cause.''

I again asked, `What is the next (in goodness)?'

He replied:

بِرُّ الْوَالِدَيْن

To be good and dutiful to your parents.

Abdullah then added, "The Prophet told me these words, and had I asked more, the Prophet would have told me more.''

The Middle Prayer

Furthermore, Allah has specifically mentioned the Middle prayer, which is the Asr prayer according to the majority of the scholars among the Companions, as At-Tirmidhi and Al-Baghawi have stated.

Al-Qadi Al-Mawardi added that the majority of the scholars of the Tabi`in also held this view.

Al-Hafiz Abu Umar bin Abdul-Barr said that this is also the opinion of the majority of the scholars of the Athar (i.e., the Hadith and the statements of the Salaf).

In addition, Abu Muhammad bin Atiyah said that this is the Tafsir (of the Middle prayer) of the majority of scholars.

Al-Hafiz Abu Muhammad Abdul-Mu'min bin Khalaf Ad-Dumyati stated in his book on the Middle prayer that;

it is the Asr prayer and mentioned that this is the Tafsir of Umar, Ali, Ibn Mas`ud, Abu Ayyub, Abdullah bin Amr, Samurah bin Jundub, Abu Hurayrah, Abu Sa`id, Hafsah, Umm Habibah, Umm Salamah, Ibn Abbas and Aishah.

This is also the Tafsir of Ubaydah, Ibrahim An-Nakhai, Razin, Zirr bin Hubaysh, Sa`id bin Jubayr, Ibn Sirin, Al-Hasan, Qatadah, Ad-Dahhak, Al-Kalbi, Muqatil, Ubayd bin Abu Maryam, and others.

The Proof that the `Asr Prayer is the Middle Prayer

Imam Ahmad reported that Ali narrated that Allah's Messenger said during the battle of Al-Ahzab (the Confederates):

شَغَلُونَا عَنِ الصَّلَاةِ الْوُسْطَى، صَلَاةِ الْعَصْرِ، مَلَأَ اللهُ قُلُوبَهُم وَبُيُوتَهم نَارًا

They (the disbelievers) busied us from performing the Middle prayer, the Asr prayer, may Allah fill their hearts and houses with fire.)

He performed the Asr prayer between Maghrib and Isha.

Muslim and An-Nasa'i recorded this Hadith.

In addition, the Two Sheikhs, Abu Dawud, At-Tirmidhi An-Nasa'i and several other collectors of the Sunan recorded this Hadith using different chains of narrators to Ali.

The Hadith about the battle of Al-Ahzab, when the Mushriks prevented Allah's Messenger and his Companions from performing the Asr prayer, has been narrated by several other Companions. We only mentioned the narrations that stated that the Middle prayer is the Asr prayer.

Furthermore, Muslim reported similar wordings for this Hadith from Ibn Mas`ud and Al-Bara bin Azib.

In addition, Imam Ahmad reported that Samurah bin Jundub said that Allah's Messenger said:

صَلَاةُ الْوسْطَى صَلَاةُ الْعَصْر

The Middle prayer is the Asr prayer.

In another narration, Allah's Messenger mentioned: حَافِظُواْ عَلَى الصَّلَوَاتِ والصَّلاَةِ الْوُسْطَى  (Guard strictly (five obligatory) As-Salawat (the prayers) especially the Middle Salah) and stated that it is the `Asr prayer.

In another narration, Allah's Messenger said:

هِيَ الْعَصْر

It is the Asr prayer.

and Ibn Jafar mentioned that the Prophet was then being asked about the Middle prayer.

At-Tirmidhi reported this Hadith and said, "Hasan, Sahih."

In addition, Abu Hatim bin Hibban reported in his Sahih that; Abdullah said that Allah's Messenger said:

صَلَاةُ الْوسْطَى صَلَاةُ الْعَصْر

The Middle prayer is the Asr prayer.

At-Tirmidhi reported that Ibn Mas`ud narrated that Allah's Messenger said:

صَلَاةُ الْوسْطَى صَلَاةُ الْعَصْر

The Asr prayer is the Middle prayer.

At-Tirmidhi then stated that this Hadith is of a Hasan Sahih type.

Muslim reported the Hadith in his Sahih and his wordings are:

شَغَلُونَا عَنِ الصَّلَاةِ الْوسْطَى صَلَاةِ الْعَصْر

They (disbelievers) busied us from performing the Middle prayer, the Asr prayer.

These texts emphasize the fact (that the Asr prayer is the Middle prayer).

What further proves this fact is that, in an authentic Hadith, Allah's Messenger emphasized the necessity of preserving the Asr prayer, when he said, as Ibn Umar narrated:

مَنْ فَاتَتْهُ صَلَاةُ الْعَصْرِ فَكَأَنَّمَا وُتِرَ أَهْلَهُ وَمَالَه

Whoever misses the Asr prayer will be like who has lost his family and money.

It is reported in the Sahih that Buraydah bin Al-Husayb said that the Prophet said:

بَكِّرُوا بِالصَّلَاةِ فِي يَوْمِ الْغَيْمِ، فَإِنَّهُ مَنْ تَرَكَ صَلَاةَ الْعَصْرِ، فَقَدْ حَبِطَ عَمَلُه

On a cloudy day, perform the (Asr) prayer early, for whoever misses the Asr prayer, will have his (good) deeds annulled.

The Prohibition of speaking during the Prayer

Allah said:

... وَقُومُواْ لِلّهِ قَانِتِينَ ﴿٢٣٨﴾

And stand before Allah with obedience.

meaning, with humbleness and humility before Him (i.e., during the prayer).

This command indicates that it is not allowed to speak during the prayer, as speaking contradicts the nature of the prayer. This is why the Prophet refused to answer Ibn Mas`ud when he greeted him while he was praying and said afterwards:

إِنَّ فِي الصَّلَاةِ لَشُغْلًا

The prayer makes one sufficiently busy.

i.e., by the various actions of the body, tongue and heart involved during the prayer.

Muslim reported that the Prophet said to Muawiyah bin Hakam As-Sulami when he spoke during the prayer:

إِنَّ هذِهِ الصَّلَاةَ لَا يَصْلُحُ فِيهَا شَيْءٌ مِنْ كَلَامِ النَّاسِ، إنَّمَا هِي التَّسْبِيحُ وَالتَّكْبِيرُ وَذِكْرُ الله

The ordinary speech people indulge in is not appropriate during the prayer. The prayer involves only Tasbih (praising Allah), Takbir (saying Allahu Akbar, i.e., Allah is the Most Great) and remembering Allah.

Imam Ahmad reported that Zayd bin Arqam said,

"One used to address his friend about various affairs during the prayer. Then when this Ayah was revealed:  وَقُومُواْ لِلّهِ قَانِتِينَ  (And stand before Allah with obedience), we were ordered to refrain from speaking.''

The Group (i.e., the Hadith collections), except Ibn Majah, reported this Hadith.

The Fear Prayer

Allah said:

فَإنْ خِفْتُمْ فَرِجَالاً أَوْ رُكْبَانًا فَإِذَا أَمِنتُمْ فَاذْكُرُواْ اللّهَ كَمَا عَلَّمَكُم مَّا لَمْ تَكُونُواْ تَعْلَمُونَ ﴿٢٣٩﴾  

And if you fear (an enemy), (perform Salah) on foot or riding. And when you are in safety, then remember Allah (pray) in the manner He has taught you, which you knew not (before).

After Allah commanded His servants to perform the prayer perfectly and emphasized this commandment, He mentioned the situation where the person might not be able to perform the prayer perfectly, during battle and combat.

Allah said: فَإنْ خِفْتُمْ فَرِجَالاً أَوْ رُكْبَانًا  (And if you fear (an enemy), perform Salah on foot or riding), meaning, pray in the appropriate manner under these circumstances, whether on foot or riding and whether facing the Qiblah or otherwise.

Imam Malik reported that Nafi related that Ibn Umar used to describe the Fear prayer when he was asked about it and would then add,

"If there is intense fear, pray on foot, riding, facing the Qiblah and otherwise.''

Nafi commented, "I think that he related that to the Prophet.''

Al-Bukhari and Muslim reported the Hadith.

Muslim, Abu Dawud, An-Nasa'i, Ibn Majah and Ibn Jarir reported that Ibn Abbas said,

"Allah has ordained the prayer by the words of your Prophet: four (Rak`ah) while residing, two Rak`ah while traveling and one Rak`ah during times of fear.''

This is also the view of Al-Hasan Al-Basri, Qatadah, Ad-Dahhak, and others.

In addition, Al-Bukhari has entitled a Chapter: `Prayer while confronting the Forts and facing the Enemy'.

Al-Awza`i said,

"If the victory seems near and the Muslims are unable to perform the prayer (in the normal manner), they should pray by nodding each by himself. If they are unable to nod, they should delay the prayer until fighting is finished.

When they feel safe, they should pray two Rak`ah. If they are unable, they should then pray one Rak`ah that includes two prostrations.

If they are unable, then Takbir alone does not suffice, so they should delay the prayer until they are safe.''

This is the same view that Makhul held.

Anas bin Malik said,

"I participated in the attack on the fort of Tastar, when the light of dawn started to become clear. Suddenly, the fighting raged and the Muslims were unable to pray until the light of day spread. We then prayed (the Dawn prayer) with Abu Musa and we became victorious.

I would not have been pleased if I were to gain in the life of this world and whatever is in it instead of that prayer.''

This is the wording of Al-Bukhari.

Prayer during the Times of Peace is performed normally

Allah said:

... فَإِذَا أَمِنتُمْ فَاذْكُرُواْ اللّهَ ...

And when you are in safety, then remember Allah (pray),

meaning, `Perform the prayer as I have commanded you by completing its bowing, prostration, standing, sitting, and with the required attention (in the heart) and supplication.'

Allah said:

... كَمَا عَلَّمَكُم مَّا لَمْ تَكُونُواْ تَعْلَمُونَ

in the manner He has taught you, which you knew not (before).

meaning, just as He has endowed you, guided you and taught you about what benefits you in this life and the Hereafter, so thank and remember Him.

Similarly, Allah said after He mentioned the prayer of Fear,

فَإِذَا اطْمَأْنَنتُمْ فَأَقِيمُواْ الصَّلَوةَ إِنَّ الصَّلَوةَ كَانَتْ عَلَى الْمُؤْمِنِينَ كِتَـباً مَّوْقُوتاً

...but when you are free from danger, perform As-Salah. Verily, As-Salah (the prayer) is enjoined on the believers at fixed hours. (4:103)

We will mention the Hadiths about the prayer of Fear and its description in Surah An-Nisa while mentioning Allah's statement:

وَإِذَا كُنتَ فِيهِمْ فَأَقَمْتَ لَهُمُ الصَّلَوةَ

When you (O Messenger Muhammad) are among them, and lead them in As-Salah (the prayer). (4:102)

240

وَالَّذِينَ يُتَوَفَّوْنَ مِنكُمْ وَيَذَرُونَ أَزْوَجًا وَصِيَّةً لازْوَاجِهِم مَّتَـعًا إِلَى الْحَوْلِ غَيْرَ إِخْرَاجٍ فَإِنْ خَرَجْنَ فَلاَ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْكُمْ فِى مَا فَعَلْنَ فِي أَنفُسِهِنَّ مِن مَّعْرُوفٍ

And those of you who die and leave behind wives should bequeath for their wives a year's maintenance (and residence) without turning them out, but if they (wives) leave, there is no sin on you for that which they do of themselves, provided it is honorable (e.g., lawful marriage).

وَاللَّهُ عَزِيزٌ حَكِيمٌ

And Allah is All-Mighty, All-Wise.

241

وَلِلْمُطَلَّقَـتِ مَتَـعٌ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ حَقًّا عَلَى الْمُتَّقِينَ

And for divorced women, maintenance (should be provided) on reasonable (scale). This is a duty on Al-Muttaqin (the pious).

242

كَذَلِكَ يُبَيِّنُ اللَّهُ لَكُمْ آيَـتِهِ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَعْقِلُونَ

Thus Allah makes clear His Ayat (Laws) to you, in order that you may understand.

Ayah (2:240) was abrogated

Allah said;

وَالَّذِينَ يُتَوَفَّوْنَ مِنكُمْ وَيَذَرُونَ أَزْوَاجًا وَصِيَّةً لِّأَزْوَاجِهِم مَّتَاعًا إِلَى الْحَوْلِ غَيْرَ إِخْرَاجٍ فَإِنْ خَرَجْنَ فَلاَ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْكُمْ فِي مَا فَعَلْنَ فِيَ أَنفُسِهِنَّ مِن مَّعْرُوفٍ وَاللّهُ عَزِيزٌ حَكِيمٌ ﴿٢٤٠﴾  

And those of you who die and leave behind wives should bequeath for their wives a year's maintenance (and residence) without turning them out, but if they (wives) leave, there is no sin on you for that which they do of themselves, provided it is honorable (e.g., lawful marriage). And Allah is All-Mighty, All-Wise.

The majority of the scholars said that; this Ayah (2:240) was abrogated by the Ayah (2:234), what Allah said: يَتَرَبَّصْنَ بِأَنفُسِهِنَّ أَرْبَعَةَ أَشْهُرٍ وَعَشْرًا  (...they (the wives) shall wait (as regards their marriage) for four months and ten days), (2:234).

For instance, Al-Bukhari reported that;

Ibn Az-Zubayr said: I said to Uthman bin Affan: وَالَّذِينَ يُتَوَفَّوْنَ مِنكُمْ وَيَذَرُونَ أَزْوَاجًا  (And those of you who die and leave wives behind them) was abrogated by the other Ayah (2:234). Therefore, why did you collect it (meaning, in the Qur'an)?''

He said, "O my nephew! I shall not change any part of the Qur'an from its place.''

The question that Ibn Az-Zubayr asked Uthman means:

`If the ruling of the Ayah (2:240) was abrogated to four months (the Iddah of the widow, and refer to 2:234), then what is the wisdom behind including it in the Qur'an, although its ruling has been abrogated?

If the Ayah (2:240) remains (in the Qur'an) after the Ayah that abrogated it (2:234), this might imply that its ruling is still valid.'

Uthman, the Leader of the faithful, answered him by stating that this is a matter of the revelation, which mentioned these Ayat in this order. `Therefore, I shall leave the Ayah where I found it in the Qur'an.'

Ibn Abu Hatim reported that Ibn Abbas said about what Allah said: وَالَّذِينَ يُتَوَفَّوْنَ مِنكُمْ وَيَذَرُونَ أَزْوَاجًا وَصِيَّةً لِّأَزْوَاجِهِم مَّتَاعًا إِلَى الْحَوْلِ غَيْرَ إِخْرَاجٍ  (And those of you who die and leave behind wives should bequeath for their wives a year's maintenance (and residence) without turning them out),

"The widow used to reside, and have her provisions provided for her for a year, in her deceased husband's house.

Later, the Ayah that specified the inheritance (4:12) abrogated this Ayah (2:240), and thus the widow inherits one-fourth or one-eighth of what her (deceased) husband leaves behind.''

Ibn Abu Hatim also related that Ali bin Abu Talhah stated that Ibn Abbas said,

"When a man died and left behind a widow, she used to remain in his house for a year for her Iddah, all the while receiving her provisions during this time.

Thereafter, Allah revealed this Ayah: وَالَّذِينَ يُتَوَفَّوْنَ مِنكُمْ وَيَذَرُونَ أَزْوَاجًا يَتَرَبَّصْنَ بِأَنفُسِهِنَّ أَرْبَعَةَ أَشْهُرٍ وَعَشْرًا (And those of you who die and leave wives behind them, they (the wives) shall wait (as regards their marriage) for four months and ten days), (2:234).

So, this is the Iddah of the widow, unless she was pregnant, for her Iddah then ends when she gives birth.

Allah also said:

وَلَهُنَّ الرُّبُعُ مِمَّا تَرَكْتُمْ إِن لَّمْ يَكُنْ لَّكُمْ وَلَدٌ فَإِن كَانَ لَكُمْ وَلَدٌ فَلَهُنَّ الثُّمُنُ مِمَّا تَرَكْتُم

In that which you leave, their (your wives') share is a fourth if you leave no child; but if you leave a child, they get an eighth of that which you leave. (4:12)

So Allah specified the share of the widow in the inheritance and there was no need for the will or the Nafaqah (maintenance) which were mentioned in (2:240).''

Ibn Abu Hatim stated that Mujahid, Al-Hasan, Ikrimah, Qatadah, Ad-Dahhak, Ar-Rabi and Muqatil bin Hayyan said that; the Ayah (2:240) was abrogated by: أَرْبَعَةَ أَشْهُرٍ وَعَشْرًا (four months and ten days. (2:234)

Al-Bukhari reported that;

Mujahid said that: وَالَّذِينَ يُتَوَفَّوْنَ مِنكُمْ وَيَذَرُونَ أَزْوَاجًا  (And those of you who die and leave wives behind them) (2:234) used to be the Iddah, and the widow had to remain with her (deceased) husband's family (during that period, i.e., four months and ten days). Then, Allah revealed:

وَالَّذِينَ يُتَوَفَّوْنَ مِنكُمْ وَيَذَرُونَ أَزْوَاجًا وَصِيَّةً لِّأَزْوَاجِهِم مَّتَاعًا إِلَى الْحَوْلِ غَيْرَ إِخْرَاجٍ فَإِنْ خَرَجْنَ فَلاَ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْكُمْ فِي مَا فَعَلْنَ فِيَ أَنفُسِهِنَّ مِن مَّعْرُوفٍ

(And those of you who die and leave behind wives should bequeath for their wives a year's maintenance (and residence) without turning them out, but if they (wives) leave, there is no sin on you for that which they do of themselves, provided it is honorable (e.g., lawful marriage).

So, Allah made the rest of the year, which is seven months and twenty days, as a will and testament for her. Consequently, if she wants, she could use her right in this will and remain in the residence (for the rest of the year). Or, if she wants, she could leave the (deceased husband's) house after the four months and ten days have passed. This is the meaning of what Allah said: غَيْرَ إِخْرَاجٍ فَإِنْ خَرَجْنَ فَلاَ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْكُمْ  (...without turning them out, but if they (wives) leave, there is no sin on you).

Therefore, the required term of Iddah is still unchanged (refer to 2:234).

Ata quoted Ibn Abbas,

"This Ayah (2:240) has abrogated (the requirement that) the widow spends the Iddah with his (i.e., her deceased husband's) family. So, she spends her Iddah wherever she wants. This is the meaning of what Allah said: غَيْرَ إِخْرَاجٍ  (without turning them out).''

Ata also said:

"If she wants, she spends the Iddah with his family and resides there according to the will (meaning the rest of the year). If she wants, she is allowed to leave, for Allah said: فَلاَ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْكُمْ فِي مَا فَعَلْنَ  (there is no sin on you for that which they do of themselves).''

Ata then said:

"Then (the Ayah on) the inheritance (refer to 4:12) came and abrogated the residence. Hence, the widow spends her Iddah wherever she wants and does not have the right to residence any more.''

The statement of Ata and those who held the view that the Ayah (2:240) was abrogated by the Ayah on the inheritance (4:12), is only valid for more than the four months and ten days (required in 2:234). However, if they mean that the four months and ten days are not required from the deceased husband's estate, then this opinion is the subject of disagreement among the scholars.

As proof, they said that the widow is required to remain in her (deceased) husband's house (for four months and ten days) according to what Malik reported from Zaynab bint Ka`b bin Ujrah.

She said that Fari`ah bint Malik bin Sinan, the sister of Abu Sa`id Al-Khudri, told her that she came to Allah's Messenger asking him to return to her family's residence with Banu Khudrah. Her husband had pursued some of his servants who ran away, but when he reached the area of Al-Qadum, they killed him.

She said, "So I asked Allah's Messenger if I should stay with my family in Banu Khudrah, for my (deceased) husband did not leave me a residence that he owns or Nafaqah (maintenance).

Allah's Messenger answered in the positive. While I was in the room, Allah's Messenger summoned me or had someone summon me and said:

كَيْفَ قُلْت

What did you say?

I repeated the story to him about my (deceased) husband.

He said:

امْكُثي فِي بَيْتِكِ حَتَّى يَبْلُغَ الكِتَابُ أَجَلَه

Stay at your home until the term reaches its end.

So I remained through the Iddah term for four months and ten days in my (deceased husband's) house.

Thereafter, Uthman bin Affan sent for me during his reign and asked me about this matter and I told him what happened. He made a judgment to the same effect.''

This Hadith was also collected by Abu Dawud, At-Tirmidhi, An-Nasa'i and Ibn Majah.

At-Tirmidhi said, "Hasan Sahih".

The Necessity of the Mut`ah (Gift) at the Time of Divorce

Allah said:

وَلِلْمُطَلَّقَاتِ مَتَاعٌ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ حَقًّا عَلَى الْمُتَّقِينَ ﴿٢٤١﴾

And for divorced women, maintenance (should be provided) on reasonable (scale). This is a duty on Al-Muttaqin (the pious).

Abdur-Rahman bin Zayd bin Aslam said that;

when Allah's statement: مَتَاعًا بِالْمَعْرُوفِ حَقًّا عَلَى الْمُحْسِنِينَ  (...a gift of reasonable amount is a duty on the doers of good) (2:236) was revealed, a man said, "If I want, I will be excellent and if I do not, I will not.''

Thereafter, Allah revealed this Ayah: وَلِلْمُطَلَّقَاتِ مَتَاعٌ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ حَقًّا عَلَى الْمُتَّقِينَ  (And for divorced women, maintenance (should be provided) on reasonable (scale). This is a duty on Al-Muttaqin (the pious).

The scholars who ruled that; the Mut`ah (reasonable gift) at the time of divorce is required for every divorced woman, whether she had a bridal-money appointed for her or not, and whether the marriage was consummated or not, relied on this Ayah (2:241) when they issued their ruling. This is the view taken on this subject by Sa`id bin Jubayr and several others among the Salaf and also Ibn Jarir.

Hence, Allah's statement:

لاَّ جُنَاحَ عَلَيْكُمْ إِن طَلَّقْتُمُ النِّسَاء مَا لَمْ تَمَسُّوهُنُّ أَوْ تَفْرِضُواْ لَهُنَّ فَرِيضَةً وَمَتِّعُوهُنَّ  عَلَى الْمُوسِعِ قَدَرُهُ وَعَلَى الْمُقْتِرِ قَدْرُهُ مَتَاعًا بِالْمَعْرُوفِ حَقًّا عَلَى الْمُحْسِنِينَ

There is no sin on you, if you divorce women while yet you have not touched (had sexual relation with) them, nor appointed for them their due (dowry). But bestow on them (a suitable gift), the rich according to his means, and the poor according to his means, a gift of reasonable amount is a duty on the doers of good. (2:236)

only mentions some specifics of this general ruling.

Allah then said:

كَذَلِكَ يُبَيِّنُ اللّهُ لَكُمْ آيَاتِهِ ...

Thus Allah makes clear His Ayat (Laws) to you,

meaning, what He allows, forbids, requires, His set limits, His commandments and His prohibitions are all explained and made plain and clear for you. He did not leave any matter in general terms if you needed the specifics.

... لَعَلَّكُمْ تَعْقِلُونَ ﴿٢٤٢﴾

in order that you may understand.

meaning, understand and comprehend.

243

أَلَمْ تَرَ إِلَى الَّذِينَ خَرَجُواْ مِن دِيَـرِهِمْ وَهُمْ أُلُوفٌ حَذَرَ الْمَوْتِ فَقَالَ لَهُمُ اللَّهُ مُوتُواْ ثُمَّ أَحْيَـهُمْ

Did you (O Muhammad) not think of those who went forth from their homes in the thousands, fearing death Allah said to them, "Die''. And then He restored them to life.

إِنَّ اللَّهَ لَذُو فَضْلٍ عَلَى النَّاسِ وَلَـكِنَّ أَكْثَرَ النَّاسِ لاَ يَشْكُرُونَ

Truly, Allah is full of bounty to mankind, but most men thank not

244

وَقَـتِلُواْ فِي سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ وَاعْلَمُواْ أَنَّ اللَّهَ سَمِيعٌ عَلِيمٌ

And fight in the way of Allah and know that Allah is All-Hearer, All-Knower.

245

مَّن ذَا الَّذِى يُقْرِضُ اللَّهَ قَرْضًا حَسَنًا فَيُضَاعِفَهُ لَهُ أَضْعَافًا كَثِيرَةً وَاللَّهُ يَقْبِضُ وَيَبْسُطُ وَإِلَيْهِ تُرْجَعُونَ

Who is he that will lend to Allah a goodly loan so that He may multiply it to him many times And it is Allah that decreases or increases (your provisions), and unto Him you shall return.

The Story of the Dead People

Allah says;

أَلَمْ تَرَ إِلَى الَّذِينَ خَرَجُواْ مِن دِيَارِهِمْ وَهُمْ أُلُوفٌ حَذَرَ الْمَوْتِ فَقَالَ لَهُمُ اللّهُ مُوتُواْ ثُمَّ أَحْيَاهُمْ ...

Did you (O Muhammad) not think of those who went forth from their homes in the thousands, fearing death Allah said to them, "Die''. And then He restored them to life.

Ibn Abu Hatim related that Ibn Abbas said that; these people mentioned herein, were the residents of a village called Dawardan.

Ali bin Asim said that; they were from Dawardan, a village several miles away from Wasit (in Iraq).

In his Tafsir, Waki bin Jarrah said that Ibn Abbas commented, أَلَمْ تَرَ إِلَى الَّذِينَ خَرَجُواْ مِن دِيَارِهِمْ وَهُمْ أُلُوفٌ حَذَرَ الْمَوْتِ  (Did you (O Muhammad) not think of those who went forth from their homes in thousands, fearing death), that they were four thousand persons who escaped the plague (that broke out in their land).

They said, "We should go to a land that is free of death!''

When they reached a certain area, Allah said to them: مُوتُواْ  ("Die'') and they all died.

Afterwards, one of the Prophets passed by them and supplicated to Allah to resurrect them and Allah brought them back to life. So, Allah stated: أَلَمْ تَرَ إِلَى الَّذِينَ خَرَجُواْ مِن دِيَارِهِمْ وَهُمْ أُلُوفٌ حَذَرَ الْمَوْتِ  (Did you (O Muhammad) not think of those who went forth from their homes in the thousands, fearing death).

Furthermore, several scholars among the Salaf said that; these people were the residents of a city during the time of the Children of Israel. The weather in their land did not suit them and an epidemic broke out. They fled their land fearing death and took refuge in the wilderness.

They later arrived at a fertile valley and they filled what is between its two sides. Then Allah sent two angels to them, one from the lower side and the other from the upper side of the valley. The angels screamed once and all the people died instantly, just as the death of one man.

They were later moved to a different place, where walls and graves were built around them. They all perished, and their bodies rotted and disintegrated. Long afterwards, one of the Prophets of the Children of Israel, whose name was Hizqil (Ezekiel), passed by them and asked Allah to bring them back to life by his hand.

Allah accepted his supplication and commanded him to say, "O rotted bones, Allah commands you to come together.'' The bones of every body were brought together. Allah then commanded him to say, "O bones, Allah commands you to be covered with flesh, nerves and skin.'' That also happened while Hizqil was watching. Allah then commanded him to say, "O souls, Allah commands you to return, each to the body that it used to inhabit.''

They all came back to life, looked around and proclaimed, "All praise is due to You (O Allah!) and there is no deity worthy of worship except You.''

Allah brought them back to life after they had perished long ago.

We should state that bringing these people back to life is a clear proof that physical resurrection shall occur on the Day of Resurrection. This is why Allah said:

... إِنَّ اللّهَ لَذُو فَضْلٍ عَلَى النَّاسِ ...

Truly, Allah is full of bounty to mankind,

meaning, in that He shows them His great signs, sound proofs and clear evidences.

Yet,

... وَلَـكِنَّ أَكْثَرَ النَّاسِ لاَ يَشْكُرُونَ ﴿٢٤٣﴾

but most men thank not.

as they do not thank Allah for what He has given them with in their worldly life and religious affairs.

The story of the dead people (above) also indicates that no caution can ever avert destiny and that there is no refuge from Allah, but to Allah Himself. These people departed from their land fleeing the epidemic and seeking to enjoy a long life. What they earned was the opposite of what they sought, as death came quickly and instantaneously and seized them all.

There is an authentic Hadith that Imam Ahmad reported that Abdullah bin Abbas said that;

Umar bin Al-Khattab once went to Ash-Sham (Syria). When he reached the area of Sargh, he was met by the commanders of the army: Abu Ubaydah bin Jarrah and his companions. They told him that the plague had broken out in Ash-Sham.

The Hadith then mentioned that Abdur-Rahman bin Awf, who was away attending to some of his affairs, came and said, "I have knowledge regarding this matter. I heard Allah's Messenger say:

إِذَا كَانَ بِأَرْضٍ وَأَنْتُمْ بِهَا فَلَا تَخْرُجُوا فِرَارًا مِنْه، وإِذَا سَمِعتُمْ به بأَرْضٍ فَلا تَقْدمُوا عَلَيْه

If it (the plague) breaks out in a land that you are in, do not leave that land to escape from it. If you hear about it in a land, do not enter it.

Umar then thanked Allah and went back.

This Hadith is also reported in the Sahihayn.

Abandoning Jihad does not alter Destiny

Allah said:

وَقَاتِلُواْ فِي سَبِيلِ اللّهِ وَاعْلَمُواْ أَنَّ اللّهَ سَمِيعٌ عَلِيمٌ ﴿٢٤٤﴾   

And fight in the way of Allah and know that Allah is All-Hearer, All-Knower.

This Ayah indicates that just as caution does not alter destiny, abandoning Jihad will neither bring the appointed term closer nor delay it. Rather, destiny and the appointed provisions are fixed and shall never be changed or altered, neither by addition nor deletion.

Similarly, Allah said:

الَّذِينَ قَالُواْ لإِخْوَنِهِمْ وَقَعَدُواْ لَوْ أَطَاعُونَا مَا قُتِلُوا قُلْ فَادْرَءُوا عَنْ أَنفُسِكُمُ الْمَوْتَ إِن كُنتُمْ صَـدِقِينَ

(They are) the ones who said about their killed brethren while they themselves sat (at home): "If only they had listened to us, they would not have been killed.''

Say: "Avert death from your own selves, if you speak the truth.'' (3:168)

Allah said:

وَقَالُواْ رَبَّنَا لِمَ كَتَبْتَ عَلَيْنَا الْقِتَالَ لَوْلا أَخَّرْتَنَا إِلَى أَجَلٍ قَرِيبٍ قُلْ مَتَـعُ الدُّنْيَا قَلِيلٌ وَالاٌّخِرَةُ خَيْرٌ لِّمَنِ اتَّقَى وَلاَ تُظْلَمُونَ فَتِيلاًأَيْنَمَا تَكُونُواْ يُدْرِككُّمُ الْمَوْتُ وَلَوْ كُنتُمْ فِى بُرُوجٍ مُّشَيَّدَةٍ

They say: "Our Lord! Why have you ordained for us fighting Would that you had granted us respite for a short period!''

Say: "Short is the enjoyment of this world. The Hereafter is (far) better for him who fears Allah, and you shall not be dealt with unjustly even equal to the Fatila (a scalish thread in the long slit of a date stone). Wheresoever you may be, death will overtake you even if you are in fortresses built up strong and high!'' (4:77-78)

Abu Sulayman, Khalid bin Al-Walid, the commander of the Muslim armies, the veteran among Muslim soldiers, the protector of Islam and the Sword of Allah that was raised above His enemies, said while dying,

"I have participated in so-and-so number of battles. There is not a part of my body, but suffered a shot (of an arrow), a stab (of a spear) or a strike (of a sword). Yet, here I am, I die on my bed just as the camel dies! May the eyes of the cowards never taste sleep.''

He, may Allah be pleased with him, was sorry and in pain because he did not die as martyr in battle. He was sad that he had to die on his bed!

The Good Loan and its Reward

Allah said:

مَّن ذَا الَّذِي يُقْرِضُ اللّهَ قَرْضًا حَسَنًا فَيُضَاعِفَهُ لَهُ أَضْعَافًا كَثِيرَةً ...  

Who is he that will lend to Allah a goodly loan so that He may multiply it to him many times,

In this Ayah, Allah encourages His servants to spend in His cause. Allah mentioned this same Ayah in several other parts of His Glorious Qur'an.

The Hadith that mentions that Allah descends (every night down on the nearest heaven to us when the last third of the night remains) states that Allah says:

مَنْ يُقْرِضُ غَيْرَ عَدِيمٍ وَلَا ظَلُوم

Who would give a loan to He Who is neither poor nor unjust.

Allah's statement: فَيُضَاعِفَهُ لَهُ أَضْعَافًا كَثِيرَةً  (He may multiply it to him many times), is similar to His statement:

مَّثَلُ الَّذِينَ يُنفِقُونَ أَمْوَالَهُمْ فِي سَبِيلِ اللّهِ كَمَثَلِ حَبَّةٍ أَنبَتَتْ سَبْعَ سَنَابِلَ فِي كُلِّ سُنبُلَةٍ مِّئَةُ حَبَّةٍ وَاللّهُ يُضَاعِفُ لِمَن يَشَاء

The likeness of those who spend their wealth in the way of Allah, is as the likeness of a grain (of corn); it grows seven ears, and each ear has a hundred grains. Allah gives manifold increase to whom He wills. (2:261)

We will mention this Ayah later on.

Allah then said:

... وَاللّهُ يَقْبِضُ وَيَبْسُطُ ...

And it is Allah that decreases or increases (your provisions),

meaning, `Spend (in Allah's cause) and do not be anxious.'

Certainly, Allah is the Sustainer Who increases or decreases the provisions to whomever He wills among His servants. Allah's wisdom is perfect, and,

... وَإِلَيْهِ تُرْجَعُونَ ﴿٢٤٥﴾

and unto Him you shall return, (on the Day of Resurrection).

246

أَلَمْ تَرَ إِلَى الْمَلإِ مِن بَنِى إِسْرءِيلَ مِن بَعْدِ مُوسَى إِذْ قَالُواْ لِنَبِىٍّ لَّهُمُ ابْعَثْ لَنَا مَلِكًا نُّقَـتِلْ فِى سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ

Have you not thought about the group of the Children of Israel after (the time of) Musa! When they said to a Prophet of theirs, "Appoint for us a king and we will fight in Allah's way.''

قَالَ هَلْ عَسَيْتُمْ إِن كُتِبَ عَلَيْكُمُ الْقِتَالُ أَلاَّ تُقَـتِلُواْ

He said, "Would you then refrain from fighting, if fighting was prescribed for you!''

قَالُواْ وَمَا لَنَآ أَلاَّ نُقَـتِلَ فِى سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ وَقَدْ أُخْرِجْنَا مِن دِيَـرِنَا وَأَبْنَآئِنَا

They said, "Why should we not fight in Allah's way while we have been driven out of our homes and our children (families have been taken as captives)!''

فَلَمَّا كُتِبَ عَلَيْهِمُ الْقِتَالُ تَوَلَّوْاْ إِلاَّ قَلِيلاً مِّنْهُمْ وَاللَّهُ عَلِيمٌ بِالظَّـلِمِينَ

But when fighting was ordered for them, they turned away, all except a few of them. And Allah is All-Aware of the wrongdoers.

The Story of the Jews Who sought a King to be appointed over Them

Allah tells;

أَلَمْ تَرَ إِلَى الْمَلإِ مِن بَنِي إِسْرَائِيلَ مِن بَعْدِ مُوسَى إِذْ قَالُواْ لِنَبِيٍّ لَّهُمُ ابْعَثْ لَنَا مَلِكًا نُّقَاتِلْ فِي سَبِيلِ اللّهِ قَالَ هَلْ عَسَيْتُمْ إِن كُتِبَ عَلَيْكُمُ الْقِتَالُ أَلاَّ تُقَاتِلُواْ  ...

Have you not thought about the group of the Children of Israel after (the time of) Musa! When they said to a Prophet of theirs, "Appoint for us a king and we will fight in Allah's way.''

He said, "Would you then refrain from fighting, if fighting was prescribed for you!''

Mujahid said that; the Prophet (mentioned in the Ayah) is Shamwil (Samuel).

Wahb bin Munabbih said:

The Children of Israel remained on the straight path for a period of time after Moses. They then innovated in the religion and some of them even worshipped the idols. Yet, there were always Prophets sent among them who would command them to work righteous deeds, refrain from doing evil and who would rule them according to the commands of the Torah.

When they (Israelites) committed the evil that they committed, Allah caused their enemies to overwhelm them, and many fatalities fell among them as a consequence. Their enemies also captured a great number of them, and took over large areas of their land.

Earlier, anyone who would fight the Israelites would lose, because they had the Torah and the Tabut, which they inherited generation after generation ever since the time of Moses, who spoke to Allah directly. Yet, the Israelites kept indulging in misguidance until some king took the Tabut from them during a battle. That king also took possession of the Torah, and only a few of the Israelites who memorized it remained.

The Prophethood halted among their various tribes and only a pregnant woman remained of the offspring of Lavi (Levi), in whom the Prophethood still appeared. Her husband had been killed, so the Israelites kept her in a house so that Allah may give her a boy, who would be their Prophet. The woman also kept invoking Allah to grant her a boy. Allah heard her pleas and gave her a boy whom she called `Shamwil' meaning `Allah has heard my pleas.'

Some people said that the boy's name was Shamun (Simeon), which also has a similar meaning.

As that boy grew, Allah raised him to be a righteous person. When he reached the age of Prophethood, Allah revealed to him and commanded him to call (his people) to Him and to His Tawhid (Oneness). Shamwil called the Children of Israel (to Allah) and they asked him to appoint a king over them so that they could fight their enemies under his command. The kingship had also ended among them.

Their Prophet said to them, "What if Allah appoints a king over you, would you fulfill your vow to fight under his command!''

... قَالُواْ وَمَا لَنَا أَلاَّ نُقَاتِلَ فِي سَبِيلِ اللّهِ وَقَدْ أُخْرِجْنَا مِن دِيَارِنَا وَأَبْنَآئِنَا ...

They said, "Why should we not fight in Allah's way while we have been driven out of our homes and our children!''

meaning, `After our land had been confiscated and our children had been taken from us.'

Allah said:

... فَلَمَّا كُتِبَ عَلَيْهِمُ الْقِتَالُ تَوَلَّوْاْ إِلاَّ قَلِيلاً مِّنْهُمْ وَاللّهُ عَلِيمٌ بِالظَّالِمِينَ ﴿٢٤٦﴾

But when fighting was ordered for them, they turned away, all except a few of them. And Allah is All-Aware of the wrongdoers.

meaning, only a few of them kept their promise, but the majority abandoned Jihad and Allah has full knowledge of them.

247

وَقَالَ لَهُمْ نَبِيُّهُمْ إِنَّ اللَّهَ قَدْ بَعَثَ لَكُمْ طَالُوتَ مَلِكًا

And their Prophet said to them, "Indeed Allah has appointed Talut (Saul) as a king over you.''

قَالُواْ أَنَّى يَكُونُ لَهُ الْمُلْكُ عَلَيْنَا وَنَحْنُ أَحَقُّ بِالْمُلْكِ مِنْهُ وَلَمْ يُؤْتَ سَعَةً مِّنَ الْمَالِ

They said, "How can he be a king over us when we are fitter than him for the kingdom, and he has not been given enough wealth.''

قَالَ إِنَّ اللَّهَ اصْطَفَـهُ عَلَيْكُمْ وَزَادَهُ بَسْطَةً فِي الْعِلْمِ وَالْجِسْمِ وَاللَّهُ يُؤْتِى مُلْكَهُ مَن يَشَآءُ وَاللَّهُ وَسِعٌ عَلِيمٌ

He said: "Verily, Allah has chosen him above you and has increased him abundantly in knowledge and stature. And Allah grants His kingdom to whom He wills. And Allah is All-Sufficient for His creatures' needs, All-Knower.''

Allah tells;

وَقَالَ لَهُمْ نَبِيُّهُمْ إِنَّ اللّهَ قَدْ بَعَثَ لَكُمْ طَالُوتَ مَلِكًا ...  

And their Prophet said to them, "Indeed Allah has appointed Talut (Saul) as a king over you.''

When the Israelites asked their Prophet to appoint a king over them, he appointed Talut (Saul), who was then a soldier. But, Talut was not a descendant of the house of kings among them, which was exclusively in the offspring of Yahudha (Judah). This is why;

... قَالُوَاْ أَنَّى يَكُونُ لَهُ الْمُلْكُ عَلَيْنَا ...

They said, "How can he be a king over us,

meaning, how can he be the king for us!

... وَنَحْنُ أَحَقُّ بِالْمُلْكِ مِنْهُ وَلَمْ يُؤْتَ سَعَةً مِّنَ الْمَالِ ...

when we are fitter than him for the kingdom, and he has not been given enough wealth,

They said that Talut was also poor and did not have the wealth that justifies him being king.

Some people stated that Talut used to bring water to the people, while others stated that his profession was dyeing skins.

The Jews, thus, disputed with their Prophet while they were supposed to obey him and to say good words to him.

... قَالَ إِنَّ اللّهَ اصْطَفَاهُ عَلَيْكُمْ ...

He (their Prophet) said: "Verily, Allah has chosen him above you.

meaning, `Allah chose Talut from amongst you while having better knowledge about him.'

Their Prophet stated, "I did not choose Talut to be your king on my own. Rather, Allah has commanded that upon your request.''

Further:

... وَزَادَهُ بَسْطَةً فِي الْعِلْمِ وَالْجِسْمِ ...

...and has increased him abundantly in knowledge and stature.

meaning, `Talut is more knowledgeable and honorable than you, and stronger and more patient during combat, and has more knowledge of warfare.

In short, he has more knowledge and is stronger than you are.

The king should have sufficient knowledge, be fair looking and should have a strong soul and body.'

He then said:

... وَاللّهُ يُؤْتِي مُلْكَهُ مَن يَشَاء ...

And Allah grants His kingdom to whom He wills.

meaning, Allah Alone is the Supreme Authority Who does what He wills and no one can ask Him about His actions, while they will be asked (about their actions by Him).

This is because Allah has perfect knowledge, wisdom and kindness with His creation.

Allah said:

... وَاللّهُ وَاسِعٌ عَلِيمٌ ﴿٢٤٧﴾

And Allah is All-Sufficient for His creatures' needs, All-Knower.

meaning, His favor is encompassing and He grants His mercy to whom He wills.

He also knows those who deserve to be kings and those who do not deserve it.

248

وَقَالَ لَهُمْ نِبِيُّهُمْ إِنَّ ءَايَةَ مُلْكِهِ أَن يَأْتِيَكُمُ التَّابُوتُ فِيهِ سَكِينَةٌ مِّن رَّبِّكُمْ وَبَقِيَّةٌ مِّمَّا تَرَكَ ءَالُ مُوسَى وَءَالُ هَـرُونَ تَحْمِلُهُ الْمَلَـئِكَةُ

And their Prophet said to them: "Verily! The sign of His kingdom is that there shall come to you At-Tabut, wherein is Sakinah (peace and reassurance) from your Lord and a remnant of that which Musa (Moses) and Harun (Aaron) left behind, carried by the angels.

إِنَّ فِي ذَلِكَ لأَيَةً لَّكُمْ إِن كُنتُم مُّؤْمِنِينَ

Verily, in this is a sign for you if you are indeed believers.

Allah tells that;

وَقَالَ لَهُمْ نِبِيُّهُمْ إِنَّ آيَةَ مُلْكِهِ أَن يَأْتِيَكُمُ التَّابُوتُ ...  

And their Prophet said to them: "Verily! The sign of His kingdom is that there shall come to you At-Tabut,

Their Prophet then proclaimed, "The sign of the blessings of Talut's kingship over you is that Allah will give you back the Tabut (wooden box) that has been taken from you.''

Allah said: فِيهِ سَكِينَةٌ مِّن رَّبِّكُمْ  (wherein is Sakinah from your Lord) meaning, peace (or grace) and reassurance.

Abdur-Razzaq stated that Qatadah said: فِيهِ سَكِينَةٌ  (wherein is Sakinah), means grace.

In addition, Ar-Rabi said that; Sakinah means mercy.

This is also the meaning given by Ibn Abbas, as Al-Awfi narrated.

Allah then said:

... وَبَقِيَّةٌ مِّمَّا تَرَكَ آلُ مُوسَى وَآلُ هَارُونَ ...

...and a remnant of that which Musa (Moses) and Harun (Aaron) left behind,

Ibn Jarir related that Ibn Abbas said about this Ayah:Meaning, Moses' staff and the remnants of the Tablets.

This is the same Tafsir of Qatadah, As-Suddi, Ar-Rabi bin Anas and Ikrimah, who added, "And also the Torah.''

Abdur-Razzaq said that he asked Ath-Thawri about the meaning of, وَبَقِيَّةٌ مِّمَّا تَرَكَ آلُ مُوسَى وَآلُ هَارُونَ  (...and a remnant of that which Musa (Moses) and Harun (Aaron) left behind),

Ath-Thawri said, "Some said that it contained a pot of manna and the remnants of the Tablets, while some others said that it contained (Moses') staff and two shoes (and refer to 20:12).''

Allah then said:

... تَحْمِلُهُ الْمَلآئِكَةُ ...

...carried by the angels.

Ibn Jurayj stated that Ibn Abbas said, "The angels came down while carrying the Tabut between the sky and the earth, until they placed it before Talut while the people were watching.''

As-Suddi said, "The Tabut was brought to Talut's house, so the people believed in the Prophethood of Shamun (Simeon) and obeyed Talut.''

The Prophet then said:

... إِنَّ فِي ذَلِكَ لآيَةً لَّكُمْ ...

Verily, in this is a sign for you,

testifying to my truth in what I was sent with, my Prophethood, and my command to you to obey Talut.

... إِن كُنتُم مُّؤْمِنِينَ ﴿٢٤٨﴾

if you are indeed believers.

in Allah and the Hereafter.

248

فَلَمَّا فَصَلَ طَالُوتُ بِالْجُنُودِ قَالَ إِنَّ اللّهَ مُبْتَلِيكُم بِنَهَرٍ فَمَن شَرِبَ مِنْهُ فَلَيْسَ مِنِّي وَمَن لَّمْ يَطْعَمْهُ فَإِنَّهُ مِنِّي إِلاَّ مَنِ اغْتَرَفَ غُرْفَةً بِيَدِهِ

Then when Talut set out with the army, he said: "Verily, Allah will try you by a river. So whoever drinks thereof, he is not of me; and whoever tastes it not, he is of me, except him who takes (thereof) in the hollow of his hand.''

فَشَرِبُواْ مِنْهُ إِلاَّ قَلِيلاً مِّنْهُمْ

Yet, they drank thereof, all, except a few of them.

فَلَمَّا جَاوَزَهُ هُوَ وَالَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ مَعَهُ قَالُواْ لاَ طَاقَةَ لَنَا الْيَوْمَ بِجَالُوتَ وَجُنودِهِ

So when he had crossed it (the river), he and those who believed with him, they said: "We have no power this day against Jalut (Goliath) and his hosts.''

قَالَ الَّذِينَ يَظُنُّونَ أَنَّهُم مُّلاَقُو اللّهِ كَم مِّن فِئَةٍ قَلِيلَةٍ غَلَبَتْ فِئَةً كَثِيرَةً بِإِذْنِ اللّهِ

But those who knew with certainty that they were going to meet Allah, said: "How often has a small group overcome a mighty host by Allah's leave.''

وَاللّهُ مَعَ الصَّابِرِينَ

And Allah is with As-Sabirin (the patient).

Allah tells;

فَلَمَّا فَصَلَ طَالُوتُ بِالْجُنُودِ ...  

Then when Talut set out with the army,

Allah states that Talut, the king of the Children of Israel, marched forth with his soldiers and the Israelites who obeyed him. His army was of eighty thousand then, according to As-Suddi, but Allah knows best.

Talut said:

... قَالَ إِنَّ اللّهَ مُبْتَلِيكُم بِنَهَرٍ ...

he said: "Verily, Allah will try you by a river.

meaning, He will test you with a river, which flowed between Jordan and Palestine, i.e., the Shariah river, according to Ibn Abbas and others.

He continued,

...فَمَن شَرِبَ مِنْهُ فَلَيْسَ مِنِّي ...

So whoever drinks thereof, he is not of me;

meaning, shall not accompany me today.

... وَمَن لَّمْ يَطْعَمْهُ فَإِنَّهُ مِنِّي إِلاَّ مَنِ اغْتَرَفَ غُرْفَةً بِيَدِهِ ...

and whoever tastes it not, he is of me, except him who takes (thereof) in the hollow of his hand.

meaning, there is no harm in this case.

Allah then said:

... فَشَرِبُواْ مِنْهُ إِلاَّ قَلِيلاً مِّنْهُمْ ...

Yet, they drank thereof, all, except a few of them.

Ibn Jurayj stated that Ibn Abbas commented,

"Whoever took some of it (the river's water) in the hollow of his hand, quenched his thirst; as for those who drank freely from it, their thirst was not quenched.''

Ibn Jarir reported that Al-Bara bin Azib said,

"We used to say that the Companions of Muhammad who accompanied him on the battle of Badr were more than three hundred and ten, just as many as the soldiers who crossed the river with Talut. Only those who believed crossed the river with him.''

Al-Bukhari also reported this.

This is why Allah said:

... فَلَمَّا جَاوَزَهُ هُوَ وَالَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ مَعَهُ قَالُواْ لاَ طَاقَةَ لَنَا الْيَوْمَ بِجَالُوتَ وَجُنودِهِ ...

So when he had crossed it (the river), he and those who believed with him, they said: "We have no power this day against Jalut (Goliath) and his hosts.''

This Ayah indicates that the Israelites (who remained with Saul) thought that they were few in the face of their enemy who were many then. So, their knowledgeable scholars strengthened their resolve by stating that Allah's promise is true and that triumph comes from Allah Alone, not from the large numbers or the adequacy of the supplies.

... قَالَ الَّذِينَ يَظُنُّونَ أَنَّهُم مُّلاَقُو اللّهِ ...

But those who knew with certainty that they were going to meet Allah, said:

... كَم مِّن فِئَةٍ قَلِيلَةٍ غَلَبَتْ فِئَةً كَثِيرَةً بِإِذْنِ اللّهِ وَاللّهُ مَعَ الصَّابِرِينَ ﴿٢٤٩﴾

"How often has a small group overcome a mighty host by Allah's leave'' And Allah is with As-Sabirin (the patient).

250

وَلَمَّا بَرَزُواْ لِجَالُوتَ وَجُنُودِهِ قَالُواْ رَبَّنَآ أَفْرِغْ عَلَيْنَا صَبْرًا وَثَبّتْ أَقْدَامَنَا وَانصُرْنَا عَلَى الْقَوْمِ الْكَـفِرِينَ

And when they advanced to meet Jalut (Goliath) and his forces, they invoked: "Our Lord! Pour forth on us patience, and set firm our feet and make us victorious over the disbelieving people.''

251

فَهَزَمُوهُم بِإِذْنِ اللَّهِ وَقَتَلَ دَاوُودُ جَالُوتَ وَآتَـهُ اللَّهُ الْمُلْكَ وَالْحِكْمَةَ وَعَلَّمَهُ مِمَّا يَشَآء

So they routed them by Allah's leave and Dawud (David) killed Jalut (Goliath), and Allah gave him (Dawud) the kingdom (after the death of Talut and Samuel) and Al-Hikmah (Prophethood), and taught him of that which He willed.

وَلَوْلاَ دَفْعُ اللَّهِ النَّاسَ بَعْضَهُم بِبَعْضٍ لَفَسَدَتِ الارْضُ وَلَـكِنَّ اللَّهَ ذُو فَضْلٍ عَلَى الْعَـلَمِينَ

And if Allah did not check one set of people by means of another, the earth would indeed be full of mischief. But Allah is full of bounty to the Alamin (mankind, Jinn and all that exists).

252

تِلْكَ آيَـتُ اللَّهِ نَتْلُوهَا عَلَيْكَ بِالْحَقّ وَإِنَّكَ لَمِنَ الْمُرْسَلِينَ

These are the verses of Allah, We recite them to you (O Muhammad) in truth, and surely, you are one of the Messengers (of Allah).

Allah further tells;

وَلَمَّا بَرَزُواْ لِجَالُوتَ وَجُنُودِهِ ...  

And when they advanced to meet Jalut (Goliath) and his forces,

When the faithful party, who were few under the command of Talut, faced their enemy, who were many under the command of Jalut,

... قَالُواْ رَبَّنَا أَفْرِغْ عَلَيْنَا صَبْرًا ...

they invoked: "Our Lord! Pour forth on us patience...,''

meaning, send down patience on us from You.

... وَثَبِّتْ أَقْدَامَنَا ...

and set firm our feet,

meaning, against the enemy and save us from running away and from feebleness,

... وَانصُرْنَا عَلَى الْقَوْمِ الْكَافِرِينَ ﴿٢٥٠﴾

and make us victorious over the disbelieving people.)

Allah said:

فَهَزَمُوهُم بِإِذْنِ اللّهِ ...

So they routed them by Allah's leave,

meaning, they defeated and overwhelmed them by Allah's aid and support.

Then,

... وَقَتَلَ دَاوُدُ جَالُوتَ ...

and Dawud killed Jalut.

Israelite accounts claimed that (Prophet) David killed Goliath with a slingshot that he had, which he launched at Goliath causing his death.

Talut promised that whoever killed Jalut, would marry his daughter and would share his kingship and authority. He kept his promise. Later, the kingship was transferred to Prophet Dawud in addition to being granted Prophethood by Allah.

So, Allah said:

... وَآتَاهُ اللّهُ الْمُلْكَ ...

...and Allah gave him (Dawud) the kingdom,

that Talut had and,

... وَالْحِكْمَةَ ...

and Al-Hikmah,

that comes with the Prophethood, meaning, after Shamwil.

that comes with the Prophethood, meaning, after Shamwil.

Allah then said,

... وَعَلَّمَهُ مِمَّا يَشَاء ...

and taught him of that which He willed.

meaning, what He willed of the knowledge that He bestowed on (Prophet) Dawud.

Next, Allah said:

... وَلَوْلاَ دَفْعُ اللّهِ النَّاسَ بَعْضَهُمْ بِبَعْضٍ لَّفَسَدَتِ الأَرْضُ ...

And if Allah did not check one set of people by means of another, the earth would indeed be full of mischief.

This Ayah indicates that if it were not for the fact that Allah checks one set of people with another, such as when Talut and the bravery of Dawud helped the Children of Israel (against Goliath), then people would have perished.

Similarly, Allah said:

وَلَوْلاَ دَفْعُ اللَّهِ النَّاسَ بَعْضَهُمْ بِبَعْضٍ لَّهُدِّمَتْ صَوَمِعُ وَبِيَعٌ وَصَلَوَتٌ وَمَسَـجِدُ يُذْكَرُ فِيهَا اسمُ اللَّهِ كَثِيراً

For had it not been that Allah checks one set of people by means of another, monasteries, churches, synagogues, and Masjids, wherein the Name of Allah is mentioned much, would surely, have been pulled down. (22:40)

Allah then said:

... وَلَـكِنَّ اللّهَ ذُو فَضْلٍ عَلَى الْعَالَمِينَ ﴿٢٥١﴾

But Allah is full of bounty to the Alamin (mankind, Jinn and all that exists),

meaning, by His mercy and favor He fixes some of them by some others. Surely, Allah has the wisdom, the supreme authority and the clear proof against His creation in all of His actions and statements.

Allah said:

تِلْكَ آيَاتُ اللّهِ نَتْلُوهَا عَلَيْكَ بِالْحَقِّ وَإِنَّكَ لَمِنَ الْمُرْسَلِينَ ﴿٢٥٢﴾

These are the verses of Allah, We recite them to you (O Muhammad) in truth, and surely, you are one of the Messengers (of Allah).

This Ayah states, `These Ayat (verses) of Allah that We have narrated for you in truth conform to the exact manner that these stories have occurred and to the truth that still remain in the (Divine) Books that the scholars of the Children of Israel have and know.

Allah said: O Muhammad, وَإِنَّكَ  (you are) لَمِنَ الْمُرْسَلِينَ  (one of the Messengers (of Allah)) emphatically stating the truth of his Prophethood

253

تِلْكَ الرُّسُلُ فَضَّلْنَا بَعْضَهُمْ عَلَى بَعْضٍ

Those Messengers! We preferred some of them to others;

مِّنْهُمْ مَّن كَلَّمَ اللَّهُ وَرَفَعَ بَعْضَهُمْ دَرَجَـتٍ وَءَاتَيْنَا عِيسَى ابْنَ مَرْيَمَ الْبَيِّنَـتِ وَأَيَّدْنَـهُ بِرُوحِ الْقُدُسِ

to some of them Allah spoke (directly); others He raised to degrees (of honor); and to `Isa, the son of Maryam, We gave clear proofs and evidences, and supported him with Ruh-il-Qudus (Jibril).

وَلَوْ شَآءَ اللَّهُ مَا اقْتَتَلَ الَّذِينَ مِن بَعْدِهِم مِّن بَعْدِ مَا جَآءَتْهُمُ الْبَيِّنَـتُ وَلَـكِنِ اخْتَلَفُواْ فَمِنْهُمْ مَّنْ ءَامَنَ وَمِنْهُم مَّن كَفَرَ

If Allah had willed, succeeding generations would not have fought against each other, after clear Verses of Allah had come to them, but they differed ـ some of them believed and others disbelieved.

وَلَوْ شَآءَ اللَّهُ مَا اقْتَتَلُواْ وَلَـكِنَّ اللَّهَ يَفْعَلُ مَا يُرِيدُ

If Allah had willed, they would not have fought against one another, but Allah does what He wills.

Allah Honored Some Prophets Above Others

Allah says;

تِلْكَ الرُّسُلُ فَضَّلْنَا بَعْضَهُمْ عَلَى بَعْضٍ ...  

Those Messengers! We preferred some of them to others;

Allah states that He has honored some Prophets to others. For instance, Allah said,

وَلَقَدْ فَضَّلْنَا بَعْضَ النَّبِيِّينَ عَلَى بَعْضٍ وَءَاتَيْنَا دَاوُودَ زَبُورًا

And indeed, We have preferred some of the Prophets above others, and to Dawud We gave the Zabur (Psalms). (17:55)

In the Ayah, Allah said,

تِلْكَ الرُّسُلُ فَضَّلْنَا بَعْضَهُمْ عَلَى بَعْضٍ مِّنْهُم مَّن كَلَّمَ اللّهُ ...

Those Messengers! We preferred some of them to others; to some of them Allah spoke (directly),

meaning, Musa and Muhammad, and also Adam according to a Hadith recorded in Sahih Ibn Hibban from Abu Dharr.

... وَرَفَعَ بَعْضَهُمْ دَرَجَاتٍ ...

Others He raised to degrees (of honor),

as is evident in the Hadith about the Isra' journey, when the Messenger of Allah saw the Prophets in the various heavens according to their rank with Allah.

If somebody asks about the collective meaning of this Ayah and the Hadith that the Two Sahihs collected from Abu Hurayrah which states,

"Once, a Muslim man and a Jew had an argument and the Jew said, `No, by Him Who gave Musa superiority over all human beings!'

Hearing him, the Muslim man raised his hand and slapped the Jew on his face and said, `Over Muhammad too, O evil one!'

The Jew went to the Prophet and complained to him and the Prophet said,

لَا تُفَضِّلُونِي عَلَى الْأَنْبِيَاءِ، فَإِنَّ النَّاسَ يَصْعَقُونَ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ فَأَكُونُ أَوَّلَ مَنْ يُفِيقُ، فَأَجِدُ مُوسَى بَاطِشًا بِقَائِمَةِ الْعَرْشِ، فَلَا أَدْرِي أَفَاقَ قَبْلِي أَمْ جُوزِيَ بِصَعْقَةِ الطُّورِ؟ فَلَا تُفَضِّلُونِي عَلَى الْأَنْبِيَاء

Don't give me superiority above the Prophets, for the people will become unconscious on the Day of Resurrection, and I will be the first to be resurrected to see Musa holding on to the pillar of Allah's Throne. I will not know whether the unconsciousness Musa suffered on the Day of the Trumpet sufficed for him, or if he got up before me. So, do not give me superiority above the Prophets.

In another narration, the Prophet said,

Do not give superiority to some Prophets above others.

The answer to this question is that this Hadith prohibits preferring some Prophets above others in cases of dispute and argument, such as the incident mentioned in the Hadith. The Hadith indicates that it is not up to creation to decide which Prophet is better, for this is Allah's decision. The creation is only required to submit to, obey and believe in Allah's decision.

Allah's statement,

... وَآتَيْنَا عِيسَى ابْنَ مَرْيَمَ الْبَيِّنَاتِ ...

And We gave `Isa, the son of Maryam, clear signs,

refers to the proofs and unequivocal evidences that testify to the truth that `Isa delivered to the Children of Israel, thus testifying that he was Allah's servant and His Messenger to them.

... وَأَيَّدْنَاهُ بِرُوحِ الْقُدُسِ ...

And supported him with Ruh-il-Qudus,

meaning Allah aided `Isa with Jibril, peace be upon him.

Allah then said,

... وَلَوْ شَاء اللّهُ مَا اقْتَتَلَ الَّذِينَ مِن بَعْدِهِم مِّن بَعْدِ مَا جَاءتْهُمُ الْبَيِّنَاتُ وَلَـكِنِ اخْتَلَفُواْ فَمِنْهُم مَّنْ آمَنَ وَمِنْهُم مَّن كَفَرَ وَلَوْ شَاء اللّهُ مَا اقْتَتَلُواْ ...

If Allah had willed, succeeding generations would not have fought against each other, after clear Verses of Allah had come to them, but they differed ـ some of them believed and others disbelieved. If Allah had willed, they would not have fought against one another.

meaning all this happened by Allah's decree, and this is why He said next,

... وَلَـكِنَّ اللّهَ يَفْعَلُ مَا يُرِيدُ ﴿٢٥٣﴾

but Allah does what He wills.

254

يأَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ أَنفِقُواْ مِمَّا رَزَقْنَـكُم مِّن قَبْلِ أَن يَأْتِىَ يَوْمٌ لاَّ بَيْعٌ فِيهِ وَلاَ خُلَّةٌ وَلاَ شَفَـعَةٌ وَالْكَـفِرُونَ هُمُ الظَّـلِمُونَ

O you who believe! Spend of that with which We have provided for you, before a Day comes when there will be no bargaining, nor friendship, nor intercession. And it is the disbelievers who are the wrongdoers.

Allah Says;

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ أَنفِقُواْ مِمَّا رَزَقْنَاكُم ...   

O you who believe! Spend of that with which We have provided for you,

Allah commands His servants to spend for His sake, in the path of righteousness, from what He has granted them, so that they acquire and keep the reward of this righteous deed with their Lord and King. Let them rush to perform this deed in this life,

... مِّن قَبْلِ أَن يَأْتِيَ يَوْمٌ ...

before a Day comes,

meaning, the Day of Resurrection,

... لاَّ بَيْعٌ فِيهِ وَلاَ خُلَّةٌ وَلاَ شَفَاعَةٌ ...

when there will be no bargaining, nor friendship, nor intercession.

This Ayah indicates that on that Day, no one will be able to bargain on behalf of himself or ransom himself with any amount, even if it was the earth's fill of gold; nor will his friendship or relation to anyone benefit him.

Similarly, Allah said,

فَإِذَا نُفِخَ فِى الصُّورِ فَلاَ أَنسَـبَ بَيْنَهُمْ يَوْمَئِذٍ وَلاَ يَتَسَآءَلُونَ

Then, when the Trumpet is blown, there will be no kinship among them that Day, nor will they ask of one another. (23:101)

... وَلاَ شَفَاعَةٌ ...

Nor intercession,

meaning, they will not benefit by the intercession of anyone.

Allah's statement,

... وَالْكَافِرُونَ هُمُ الظَّالِمُونَ ﴿٢٥٤﴾

and it is the disbelievers who are the wrongdoers.

indicates that no injustice is worse than meeting Allah on that Day while a disbeliever.

Ibn Abi Hatim recorded that Ata bin Dinar said, "All thanks are due to Allah Who said, وَالْكَافِرُونَ هُمُ الظَّالِمُونَ  (and it is the disbelievers who are the wrongdoers), but did not say, `And it is the wrongdoers who are the disbelievers.'''

255

اللَّهُ لاَ إِلَـهَ إِلاَّ هُوَ

Allah! None has the right to be worshipped but He,

الْحَىُّ الْقَيُّومُ

the Ever Living, the One Who sustains and protects all that exists.

لاَ تَأْخُذُهُ سِنَةٌ وَلاَ نَوْمٌ

Neither slumber nor sleep overtakes Him.

لَّهُ مَا فِي السَّمَـوَاتِ وَمَا فِي الاٌّرْضِ

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

مَن ذَا الَّذِى يَشْفَعُ عِندَهُ إِلاَّ بِإِذْنِهِ

Who is he that can intercede with Him except with His permission.

يَعْلَمُ مَا بَيْنَ أَيْدِيهِمْ وَمَا خَلْفَهُمْ

He knows what happens to them (His creatures) in this world, and what will happen to them in the Hereafter.

وَلاَ يُحِيطُونَ بِشَيْءٍ مِّنْ عِلْمِهِ إِلاَّ بِمَا شَآءَ

And they will never compass anything of His Knowledge except that which He wills.

وَسِعَ كُرْسِيُّهُ السَّمَـوَاتِ وَالاٌّرْضَ

His Kursi extends over the heavens and the earth,

وَلاَ يَؤُودُهُ حِفْظُهُمَا

and He feels no fatigue in guarding and preserving them.

وَهُوَ الْعَلِىُّ الْعَظِيمُ

And He is the Most High, the Most Great.

The Virtue of Ayat Al-Kursi

This is Ayat Al-Kursi and tremendous virtues have been associated with it, for the authentic Hadith describes it as `the greatest Ayah in the Book of Allah.'

Imam Ahmad recorded that Ubayy bin Ka`b said that;

the Prophet asked him about the greatest Ayah in the Book of Allah, and Ubayy answered, "Allah and His Messenger know better.''

When the Prophet repeated his question several times, Ubayy said, "Ayat Al-Kursi.''

The Prophet commented,

لِيَهْنِكَ الْعِلْمُ أَبَا الْمُنْذِرِ، وَالَّذِي نَفْسِي بِيَدِهِ، إِنَّ لَهَا لِسَانًا وَشَفَتَيْنِ، تُقَدِّسُ الْمَلِكَ عِنْدَ سَاقِ الْعَرْش

Congratulations for having knowledge, O Abu Al-Mundhir! By He in Whose Hand is my soul! This Ayah has a tongue and two lips with which she praises the King (Allah) next to the leg of the Throne.

This Hadith was also collected by Muslim, but he did not include the part that starts with, "By He in Whose Hand...''

Imam Ahmad recorded that;

Abu Ayub said that he had some dates and a Ghoul used to take some, and he complained to the Prophet.

The Prophet said to him, "When you see her, say, `In the Name of Allah, answer to the Messenger of Allah'.''

Abu Ayub said that when she came again, he said these words and he was able to grab her.

She begged, "I will not come again,'' so Abu Ayub released her.

Abu Ayub went to the Prophet and the Prophet asked him, "What did your prisoner do?''

Abu Ayub said, "I grabbed her and she said twice, `I will not come again,' and I released her.''

The Prophet said, "She will come back.''

Abu Ayub said, "So I grabbed her twice or three times, yet each time (I would release her when) she vowed not to come back.

I would go to the Prophet who would ask me, `What is the news of your prisoner?' I would say, `I grabbed her, then released her when she said that she would not return.'

The Prophet would say that she would return.

Once, I grabbed her and she said, `Release me and I will teach you something to recite so that no harm touches you, that is, Ayat Al-Kursi.'

Abu Ayub went to the Prophet and told him, and the Prophet said, "She is liar, but she told the truth.''

At-Tirmidhi recorded this Hadith in the chapter of the virtues of the Qur'an and said, "Hasan Gharib.''

In Arabic, `Ghoul' refers to the Jinn when they appear at night.

Al-Bukhari recorded a similar story in his Sahih from Abu Hurayrah, in the chapters on the virtues of the Qur'an and the description of Shaytan. In this narration, Abu Hurayrah said,

"Allah's Messenger assigned me to keep watch over the Sadaqah (charity) of Ramadan. A person snuck in and started taking handfuls of foodstuff. I caught him and said, `By Allah, I will take you to Allah's Messenger.'

He said, `Release me, for I am meek and have many dependents and am in great need.'

I released him, and in the morning Allah's Messenger asked me, `What did your prisoner do yesterday, O Abu Hurayrah!'

I said, `O Allah's Messenger! He complained of being needy and of having many dependents, so I pitied him and let him go.'

Allah's Messenger said, `Indeed, he told you a lie and will be coming again.'

I believed that he would show up again, for Allah's Messenger had told me that he would return. So, I watched for him. When he (showed up and) started stealing handfuls of foodstuff, I caught hold of him again and said, `I will definitely take you to Allah's Messenger.'

He said, `Leave me, for I am very needy and have many dependents. I promise I will not come back again.'

I pitied him and let him go.

In the morning Allah's Messenger asked me, `What did your prisoner do last night, O Abu Hurayrah!'

I replied, `O Allah's Messenger! He complained of his great need and of too many dependents, so I took pity on him and set him free.'

Allah's Messenger said, `Verily, he told you a lie; he will return.'

I waited for him attentively for the third time, and when he (came and) started stealing handfuls of the foodstuff, I caught hold of him and said, `I will surely take you to Allah's Messenger as it is the third time you promised not to return, yet you returned.'

He said, `Let me teach you some words which Allah will give you benefit from.'

I asked, `What are they?'

He replied, `Whenever you go to bed, recite Ayat Al-Kursi- Allahu la ilaha illa Huwal-Hayyul-Qayyum, till you finish the whole verse. (If you do so), Allah will appoint a guard for you who will stay with you, and no Shaytan will come near you until morning.'

So, I released him.

In the morning, Allah's Messenger asked, `What did your prisoner do yesterday?'

I replied, `O Allah's Messenger! He claimed that he would teach me some words by which Allah will grant me some benefit, so I let him go.'

Allah's Messenger asked, `What are they?'

I replied, `He said to me: Whenever you go to bed, recite Ayat Al-Kursi from the beginning to the end, Allahu la ilaha illa Huwal-Hayyul-Qayyum. He further said to me: (If you do so), Allah will appoint a guard for you who will stay with you, and no Shaytan will come near you until morning.'

(One of the narrators) then commented that they (the Companions) were very keen to do good deeds.

The Prophet said, `He spoke the truth, although he is a liar.

Do you know whom you were talking to, these three nights, O Abu Hurayrah!'

Abu Hurayrah said, `No.'

He said, `It was Shaytan.'''

An-Nasa'i also recorded this Hadith in Al-Yawm wa Al-Laylah.

Allah's Greatest Name is in Ayat Al-Kursi

Imam Ahmad recorded that Asma' bint Yazid bin As-Sakan said,

"I heard the Messenger of Allah say about these two Ayat, اللّهُ لاَ إِلَـهَ إِلاَّ هُوَ الْحَيُّ الْقَيُّومُ  Allah! None has the right to be worshipped but He, the Ever Living, the One Who sustains and protects all that exists) (2:255), and, الم - اللّهُ لا إِلَـهَ إِلاَّ هُوَ الْحَيُّ الْقَيُّومُ  (Alif-Lam-Mim. Allah! None has the right to be worshipped but He, the Ever Living, the One Who sustains and protects all that exists), (3:1-2)

إِنَّ فِيهِمَا اسْمَ اللهِ الْأَعْظَم

They contain Allah's Greatest Name.

This is also the narration collected by Abu Dawud, At-Tirmidhi and Ibn Majah, and At-Tirmidhi said, "Hasan Sahih''.

Further, Ibn Marduwyah recorded that Abu Umamah reported that the Prophet said,

اسْمُ اللهِ الْأَعْظَمُ، الَّذِي إِذَا دُعِيَ بِهِ أَجَابَ، فِي ثَلَاثٍ: سُورَةِ الْبَقَرَةِ وَآلِ عِمْرَانَ وَطه

Allah's Greatest Name, if He was supplicated with it, He answers the supplication, is in three Surahs - Al-Baqarah, Al Imran and Ta-Ha.

Hisham bin Ammar, the Khatib (orator) of Damascus (one of the narrators in the above narration), said,

"As for Al-Baqarah, it is in,

اللّهُ لاَ إِلَـهَ إِلاَّ هُوَ الْحَيُّ الْقَيُّومُ

Allah! None has the right to be worshipped but He, the Ever Living, the One Who sustains and protects all that exists,  

in Al Imran, it is in,

الم  

اللّهُ لا إِلَـهَ إِلاَّ هُوَ الْحَيُّ الْقَيُّومُ  

Alif-Lam-Mim. Allah! None has the right to be worshipped but He, the Ever Living, the One Who sustains and protects all that exists, (3:1-2),

while in Ta-Ha, it is in,

وَعَنَتِ الْوُجُوهُ لِلْحَىِّ الْقَيُّومِ

And (all) faces shall be humbled before (Allah), the Ever Living, the One Who sustains and protects all that exists, (20:111).

Ayat Al-Kursi has Ten Complete Arabic Sentences

1. Allah's statement,

اللّهُ لاَ إِلَـهَ إِلاَّ هُوَ ...  

Allah! None has the right to be worshipped but He,

mentions that Allah is the One and Only Lord of all creation.

2. Allah's statement,

... الْحَيُّ الْقَيُّومُ ...

testifies that Allah is the Ever Living, Who never dies, Who sustains everyone and everything. All creation stands in need of Allah and totally relies on Him, while He is the Most Rich, Who stands in need of nothing created.

Similarly, Allah said,

وَمِنْ ءَايَـتِهِ أَن تَقُومَ السَّمَآءُ وَالاٌّرْضُ بِأَمْرِهِ

And among His signs is that the heaven and the earth stand by His command. (30:25)

3. Allah's statement,

... لاَ تَأْخُذُهُ سِنَةٌ وَلاَ نَوْمٌ ...

Neither slumber nor sleep overtakes Him,

means, no shortcoming, unawareness or ignorance ever touches Allah. Rather, He is aware of, and controls what every soul earns, has perfect watch over everything, nothing escapes His knowledge, and no secret matter is secret to Him.

Among His perfect attributes, is the fact that He is never effected by slumber or sleep. Therefore, Allah's statement, لاَ تَأْخُذُهُ سِنَةٌ  (Neither slumber overtakes Him) indicates that no unawareness due to slumber ever overtakes Allah.

Allah said afterwards, وَلاَ نَوْمٌ  (nor sleep), which is stronger than slumber.

It is recorded in the Sahih that Abu Musa said, "The Messenger of Allah delivered a speech regarding four words:

إِنَّ اللهَللهَلا يَنَامُ، وَلَا يَنْبَغِي لَهُ أَنْ يَنَامَ، يَخْفِضُ الْقِسْطَ وَيَرْفَعُهُ، يُرْفَعُ إِلَيْهِ عَمَلُ النَّهَارِ قَبْلَ عَمَلِ اللَّيْلِ، وَعَمَلُ اللَّيْلِ قَبْلَ عَمَلِ النَّهَارِ، حِجَابُهُ النُّورُ أَوِ النَّارُ لَوْ كَشَفَهُ لَأَحْرَقَتْ سُبُحَاتُ وَجْهِهِ مَا انْتَهَى إِلَيْهِ بَصَرُهُ مِنْ خَلْقِه

Allah does not sleep, and it does not befit His majesty that He sleeps. He lowers the scales and raises them. The deeds of the day are resurrected in front of Him before the deeds of the night, and the deeds of the night before the deeds of the day. His Veil is light, or fire, and if He removes it, the rays from His Face would burn whatever His sight reaches of His creation.

4. Allah's statement,

... لَّهُ مَا فِي السَّمَاوَاتِ وَمَا فِي الأَرْضِ ...

To Him belongs whatever is in the heavens and whatever is on the earth,

indicates that everyone is a servant for Allah, a part of His kingdom and under His power and authority.

Similarly, Allah said,

إِن كُلُّ مَن فِى السَّمَـوَتِ وَالاٌّرْضِ إِلاَّ آتِى الرَّحْمَـنِ عَبْداً

لَّقَدْ أَحْصَـهُمْ وَعَدَّهُمْ عَدّاً

وَكُلُّهُمْ ءَاتِيهِ يَوْمَ الْقِيَـمَةِ فَرْداً

There is none in the heavens and the earth but comes unto the Most Gracious (Allah) as a servant. Verily, He knows each one of them, and has counted them a full counting.

And everyone of them will come to Him alone on the Day of Resurrection (without any helper, or protector or defender). (19:93-95)

5. Allah's statement,

... مَن ذَا الَّذِي يَشْفَعُ عِنْدَهُ إِلاَّ بِإِذْنِهِ ...

Who is he that can intercede with Him except with His permission,

is similar to His statements,

وَكَمْ مِّن مَّلَكٍ فِى السَّمَـوَتِ لاَ تُغْنِى شَفَـعَتُهُمْ شَيْئاً إِلاَّ مِن بَعْدِ أَن يَأْذَنَ اللَّهُ لِمَن يَشَآءُ وَيَرْضَى

And there are many angels in the heavens, whose intercession will avail nothing except after Allah has given leave for whom He wills and is pleased with. (53:26)

and,

وَلاَ يَشْفَعُونَ إِلاَّ لِمَنِ ارْتَضَى

They cannot intercede except for him with whom He is pleased. (21:28)

These Ayat assert Allah's greatness, pride, and grace, and that no one dares to intercede with Him on behalf of anyone else, except by His permission.

Indeed, the Hadith about the intercession, states that the Prophet said,

آتِي تَحْتَ الْعَرْشِ فَأَخِرُّ سَاجِدًا، فَيَدَعُنِي مَا شَاءَ اللهُ أَنْ يَدَعَنِي. ثُمَّ يُقَالُ: ارْفَعْ رَأْسَكَ، وَقُلْ تُسْمَعْ، وَاشْفَعْ تُشَفَّعْ

I will stand under the Throne and fall in prostration, and Allah will allow me to remain in that position as much as He wills. I will thereafter be told, "Raise your head, speak and you will be heard, intercede and your intercession will be accepted''.

قَالَ: فَيَحُدُّ لِي حَدًّا فَأُدْخِلُهُمُ الْجَنَّة

The Prophet then said, "He will allow me a proportion whom I will enter into Paradise.''

6. Allah's statement,

... يَعْلَمُ مَا بَيْنَ أَيْدِيهِمْ وَمَا خَلْفَهُمْ ...

He knows what happens to them (His creatures) in this world, and what will happen to them in the Hereafter,

this refers to His perfect knowledge of all creation; its past, present and future.

Similarly, Allah said that the angels proclaimed;

وَمَا نَتَنَزَّلُ إِلاَّ بِأَمْرِ رَبِّكَ لَهُ مَا بَيْنَ أَيْدِينَا وَمَا خَلْفَنَا وَمَا بَيْنَ ذلِكَ وَمَا كَانَ رَبُّكَ نَسِيّاً

And we (angels) descend not except by the command of your Lord (O Muhammad). To Him belongs what is before us and what is behind us, and what is between those two; and your Lord is never forgetful. (19:64)

7. Allah's statement,

... وَلاَ يُحِيطُونَ بِشَيْءٍ مِّنْ عِلْمِهِ إِلاَّ بِمَا شَاء ...

And they will never compass anything of His Knowledge except that which He wills,

asserts the fact that no one attains any part of Allah's knowledge except what Allah conveys and allows.

This part of the Ayah indicates that no one ever acquires knowledge of Allah and in His Attributes, except what He conveys to them.

For instance, Allah said,

وَلاَ يُحِيطُونَ بِهِ عِلْماً

But they will never compass anything of His knowledge. (20: 110)

8. Allah's statement,

... وَسِعَ كُرْسِيُّهُ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالأَرْضَ ...

His Kursi extends over the heavens and the earth.

Waki narrated in his Tafsir that Ibn Abbas said, "Kursi is the footstool, and no one is able to give due consideration to (Allah's) Throne.''

Al-Hakim recorded this Hadith in his Mustadrak from Ibn Abbas, who did not relate it to the Prophet.

Al-Hakim said, "It is Sahih according to the criteria of the Two Sahihs, and they (Al-Bukhari and Muslim) did not record it.''

In addition, Ad-Dahhak said that Ibn Abbas said,

"If the seven heavens and the seven earths were flattened and laid side by side, they would add up to the size of a ring in a desert, compared to the Kursi.''

9. Allah's statement,

... وَلاَ يَؤُودُهُ حِفْظُهُمَا ...

And He feels no fatigue in guarding and preserving them,

meaning, it does not burden or cause Him fatigue to protect the heavens and earth and all that is in between them. Rather, this is an easy matter for Him.

Further, Allah sustains everything, has perfect watch over everything, nothing ever escapes His knowledge and no matter is ever a secret to Him. All matters are insignificant, modest and humble before Him.

He is the Most Rich, worthy of all praise. He does what He wills, and no one can ask Him about what He does, while they will be asked. He has supreme power over all things and perfect alertness concerning everything.

He is the Most High, the Greatest, there is no deity worthy of worship except Him, and no Lord other than Him.

10. Allah's statement,

وَهُوَ الْعَلِيُّ الْعَظِيمُ ﴿٢٥٥﴾

And He is the Most High, the Most Great,

is similar to His statement,

الْكَبِيرُ الْمُتَعَالِ

the Most Great, the Most High. (13:9)

These and similar Ayat and authentic Hadiths about Allah's Attributes must be treated the way the Salaf (righteous ancestors) treated them by accepting their apparent meanings without equating them (with the attributes of the creation) or altering their apparent meanings.

256

لاَ إِكْرَاهَ فِى الدِّينِ قَد تَّبَيَّنَ الرُّشْدُ مِنَ الْغَيِّ

There is no compulsion in religion. Verily, the right path has become distinct from the wrong path.

فَمَنْ يَكْفُرْ بِالطَّـغُوتِ وَيُؤْمِن بِاللَّهِ فَقَدِ اسْتَمْسَكَ بِالْعُرْوَةِ الْوُثْقَى لاَ انفِصَامَ لَهَا وَاللَّهُ سَمِيعٌ عَلِيمٌ

Whoever disbelieves in Taghut and believes in Allah, then he has grasped the most trustworthy handhold that will never break. And Allah is All-Hearer, All-Knower.

 No Compulsion in Religion

Allah says,

لاَ إِكْرَاهَ فِي الدِّينِ قَد تَّبَيَّنَ الرُّشْدُ مِنَ الْغَيِّ ...  

There is no compulsion in religion. Verily, the right path has become distinct from the wrong path.

لاَ إِكْرَاهَ فِي الدِّينِ  (There is no compulsion in religion), meaning, "Do not force anyone to become Muslim, for Islam is plain and clear, and its proofs and evidence are plain and clear. Therefore, there is no need to force anyone to embrace Islam. Rather, whoever Allah directs to Islam, opens his heart for it and enlightens his mind, will embrace Islam with certainty.

Whoever Allah blinds his heart and seals his hearing and sight, then he will not benefit from being forced to embrace Islam.''

It was reported that; the Ansar were the reason behind revealing this Ayah, although its indication is general in meaning.

Ibn Jarir recorded that Ibn Abbas said (that before Islam),

"When (an Ansar) woman would not bear children who would live, she would vow that if she gives birth to a child who remains alive, she would raise him as a Jew.

When Banu An-Nadir (the Jewish tribe) were evacuated (from Al-Madinah), some of the children of the Ansar were being raised among them, and the Ansar said, `We will not abandon our children.'

Allah revealed, لاَ إِكْرَاهَ فِي الدِّينِ قَد تَّبَيَّنَ الرُّشْدُ مِنَ الْغَيِّ  (There is no compulsion in religion. Verily, the right path has become distinct from the wrong path).'' Abu Dawud and An-Nasa'i also recorded this Hadith.

As for the Hadith that Imam Ahmad recorded, in which Anas said that the Messenger of Allah said to a man, أَسْلِم "Embrace Islam.''

The man said, "I dislike it.'' The Prophet said, وَإِنْ كُنْتَ كَارِهًا "Even if you dislike it.''

First, this is an authentic Hadith, with only three narrators between Imam Ahmad and the Prophet.

However, it is not relevant to the subject under discussion, for the Prophet did not force that man to become Muslim.

The Prophet merely invited this man to become Muslim, and he replied that he does not find himself eager to become Muslim. The Prophet said to the man that even though he dislikes embracing Islam, he should still embrace it, `for Allah will grant you sincerity and true intent.'

Tawhid is the Most Trustworthy Handhold

Allah's statement,

... فَمَنْ يَكْفُرْ بِالطَّاغُوتِ وَيُؤْمِن بِاللّهِ فَقَدِ اسْتَمْسَكَ بِالْعُرْوَةِ الْوُثْقَىَ لاَ انفِصَامَ لَهَا وَاللّهُ سَمِيعٌ عَلِيمٌ ﴿٢٥٦﴾

Whoever disbelieves in Taghut and believes in Allah, then he has grasped the most trustworthy handhold that will never break. And Allah is All-Hearer, All-Knower.

is in reference to, "Whoever shuns the rivals of Allah, the idols, and those that Shaytan calls to be worshipped besides Allah, whoever believes in Allah's Oneness, worships Him alone and testifies that there is no deity worthy of worship except Him, فَقَدِ اسْتَمْسَكَ بِالْعُرْوَةِ الْوُثْقَىَ  (then he has grasped the most trustworthy handhold).

Therefore, this person will have acquired firmness (in the religion) and proceeded on the correct way and the straight path.

Abu Al-Qasim Al-Baghawi recorded that Umar said,

"Jibt means magic, and Taghut means Shaytan. Verily, courage and cowardice are two instincts that appear in men, the courageous fights for those whom he does not know and the coward runs away from defending his own mother. Man's honor resides with his religion and his status is based upon his character, even if he was Persian or Nabatian.''

Umar's statement that Taghut is Shaytan is very sound, for this meaning includes every type of evil that the ignorant people of Jahiliyyah (pre Islamic era of ignorance) fell into, such as worshipping idols, referring to them for judgment, and invoking them for victory.

Allah's statement,

... فَقَدِ اسْتَمْسَكَ بِالْعُرْوَةِ الْوُثْقَىَ لاَ انفِصَامَ لَهَا ...

then he has grasped the most trustworthy handhold that will never break,

means, "He will have hold of the true religion with the strongest grasp.''

Allah equated this adherence to the firm handhold that never breaks because it is built solid and because its handle is firmly connected. This is why Allah said here, فَقَدِ اسْتَمْسَكَ بِالْعُرْوَةِ الْوُثْقَىَ لاَ انفِصَامَ لَهَا  (then he has grasped the most trustworthy handhold that will never break).

Mujahid said, "The most trustworthy handhold is Iman (faith).''

As-Suddi said that; it refers to Islam.

Imam Ahmad recorded that Qays bin Abbad said,

"I was in the Masjid when a man whose face showed signs of humbleness came and prayed two Rak`ahs that were modest in length. The people said, `This is a man from among the people of Paradise.' When he left, I followed him until he entered his house, and I entered it after him and spoke with him. When he felt at ease, I said to him, `When you entered the Masjid, the people said such and such things.'

He said, `All praise is due to Allah! No one should say what he has no knowledge of. I will tell you why they said that.

I saw a vision during the time of the Messenger of Allah, and I narrated it to him. I saw that I was in a green garden, and he described the garden's plants and spaciousness, `and there was an iron pole in the middle of the garden affixed in the earth and its tip reached the sky. On its tip, there was a handle, and I was told to ascend the pole. I said, `I cannot.' Then a helper came and raised my robe from behind and said to me, `Ascend.' I ascended until I grasped the handle and he said to me, `Hold on to the handle.' I awoke from that dream with the handle in my hand.

I went to the Messenger of Allah and told him about the vision and he said,

أَمَّا الرَّوْضَةُ فَرَوْضَةُ الْإِسْلَامِ، وَأَمَّا الْعَمُودُ فَعَمُودُ الْإِسْلَامِ، وَأَمَّا الْعُرْوَةُ فَهِيَ الْعُرْوَةُ الْوُثْقَى، أَنْتَ عَلَى الْإِسْلَامِ حَتَّى تَمُوت

As for the garden, it represents Islam; as for the pole, it represents the pillar of Islam; and the handle represents the most trustworthy handhold. You shall remain Muslim until you die.

This Companion was Abdullah bin Salam.''

This Hadith was also collected in the Two Sahihs; and Al-Bukhari also recorded it with another chain of narration.

257

اللَّهُ وَلِيُّ الَّذِينَ ءامَنُواْ يُخْرِجُهُم مِّنَ الظُّلُمَـتِ إِلَى النُّورِ

Allah is the Wali (Protector or Guardian) of those who believe. He brings them out from darknesses into light.

وَالَّذِينَ كَفَرُواْ أَوْلِيَآؤُهُمُ الطَّـغُوتُ يُخْرِجُونَهُم مِّنَ النُّورِ إِلَى الظُّلُمَـتِ أُوْلَـئِكَ أَصْحَـبُ النَّارِ هُمْ فِيهَا خَـلِدُونَ

But as for those who disbelieve, their Awliya' (supporters and helpers) are Taghut (false deities and false leaders), they bring them out from light into darknesses. Those are the dwellers of the Fire, and they will abide therein forever.

Allah says;

اللّهُ وَلِيُّ الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ يُخْرِجُهُم مِّنَ الظُّلُمَاتِ إِلَى النُّوُرِ وَالَّذِينَ كَفَرُواْ أَوْلِيَآؤُهُمُ الطَّاغُوتُ يُخْرِجُونَهُم مِّنَ النُّورِ إِلَى الظُّلُمَاتِ ...

Allah is the Wali (Protector or Guardian) of those who believe. He brings them out from darknesses into light. But as for those who disbelieve, their Awliya' (supporters and helpers) are Taghut (false deities and false leaders), they bring them out from light into darknesses.

Allah stated that whoever follows what pleases Him, He will guide him to the paths of peace, that is Islam, or Paradise. Verily, Allah delivers His believing servants from the darkness of disbelief, doubt and hesitation, to the light of the plain, clear, explained, easy and unequivocal truth.

He also stated that Shaytan is the supporter of the disbelievers who beautifies the paths of ignorance and misguidance that they follow, thus causing them to deviate from the true path into disbelief and wickedness.

... أُوْلَـئِكَ أَصْحَابُ النَّارِ هُمْ فِيهَا خَالِدُونَ ﴿٢٥٧﴾

Those are the dwellers of the Fire, and they will abide therein forever.

This is why Allah mentioned the light in the singular while mentioned the darkness in the plural, because truth is one, while disbelief comes as several types, all of which are false.

Similarly, Allah said,

وَأَنَّ هَـذَا صِرَطِي مُسْتَقِيمًا فَاتَّبِعُوهُ وَلاَ تَتَّبِعُواْ السُّبُلَ فَتَفَرَّقَ بِكُمْ عَن سَبِيلِهِ ذَلِكُمْ وَصَّـكُمْ بِهِ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَتَّقُونَ

And verily, this is my straight path, so follow it, and follow not (other) paths, for they will separate you away from His path. This He has ordained for you that you may have Taqwa. (6:153)

وَجَعَلَ الظُّلُمَـتِ وَالنُّورَ

And originated the darknesses and the light. (6:1)

and,

ظِلَـلُهُ عَنِ الْيَمِينِ

to the right and to the lefts. (16:48)

There are many other Ayat on the subject that mention the truth in the singular and falsehood in the plural, because of falsehood's many divisions and branches.

258

أَلَمْ تَرَ إِلَى الَّذِى حَآجَّ إِبْرَهِيمَ فِى رِبِّهِ أَنْ آتَـهُ اللَّهُ الْمُلْكَ

Have you not looked at him who disputed with Ibrahim about his Lord (Allah), because Allah had given him the kingdom!

إِذْ قَالَ إِبْرَهِيمُ رَبِّيَ الَّذِى يُحْىِ وَيُمِيتُ

When Ibrahim said (to him): "My Lord is He Who gives life and causes death.''

قَالَ أَنَا أُحْىِ وَأُمِيتُ

He said, "I give life and cause death.''

قَالَ إِبْرَهِيمُ فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ يَأْتِى بِالشَّمْسِ مِنَ الْمَشْرِقِ فَأْتِ بِهَا مِنَ الْمَغْرِبِ

Ibrahim said, "Verily, Allah brings the sun from the east; then bring it you from the west.''

فَبُهِتَ الَّذِى كَفَرَ وَاللَّهُ لاَ يَهْدِى الْقَوْمَ الظَّـلِمِينَ

So the disbeliever was utterly defeated. And Allah guides not the people, who are wrongdoers.

The Debate Between Ibrahim Al-Khalil and King Nimrod

The king who disputed with Ibrahim was King Nimrod, son of Canaan, son of Kush, son of Sam, son of Noah, as Mujahid stated.

It was also said that he was Nimrod, son of Falikh, son of Abir, son of Shalikh, son of Arfakhshand, son of Sam, son of Noah.

Mujahid said,

"The kings who ruled the eastern and western parts of the world are four, two believers and two disbelievers. As for the two believing kings, they were;

ˇ Suleiman bin Dawud and

ˇ Dhul-Qarnayn.

As for the two disbelieving kings, they were;

ˇ Nimrod and

ˇ Nebuchadnezzar.''

Allah knows best.

Allah said,

أَلَمْ تَرَ ...  

Have you not looked,

meaning, "With your heart, O Muhammad!''

... إِلَى الَّذِي حَآجَّ إِبْرَاهِيمَ فِي رِبِّهِ ...

at him who disputed with Ibrahim about his Lord,

meaning, about the existence of Allah.

Nimrod denied the existence of a god other than himself, as he claimed, just as Fir`awn said later to his people,

مَا عَلِمْتُ لَكُمْ مِّنْ إِلَـهٍ غَيْرِى

I know not that you have a god other than me. (28:38)

What made Nimrod commit this transgression, utter disbelief and arrant rebellion was his tyranny and the fact that he ruled for a long time. This is why the Ayah continued,

... أَنْ آتَاهُ اللّهُ الْمُلْكَ ...

Because Allah had given him the kingdom.

It appears that Nimrod asked Ibrahim to produce proof that Allah exists.

... إِذْ قَالَ إِبْرَاهِيمُ رَبِّيَ الَّذِي يُحْيِـي وَيُمِيتُ ...

When Ibrahim said (to him): "My Lord is He Who gives life and causes death",

meaning, "The proof of Allah's existence is the creations that exist after they were nothing and perish after they had existed. This only proves the existence of the Creator, Who does what He wills, for these things could not have occurred on their own without a Creator who created them, and He is the Lord that I call to for worship, Alone without a partner.''

This is when Nimrod said,

... قَالَ أَنَا أُحْيِـي وَأُمِيتُ ...

He said, "I give life and cause death".

Qatadah, Muhammad bin Ishaq and As-Suddi said that he meant,

"Two men who deserved execution were to be brought before me, and I would command that one of them be killed, and he would be killed. I would command that the second man be pardoned, and he would be pardoned. This is how I bring life and death.''

However, it appears that since Nimrod did not deny the existence of a Creator, his statement did not mean what Qatadah said it meant. This explanation does not provide an answer to what Ibrahim said. Nimrod arrogantly and defiantly claimed that he was the creator and pretended that it was he who brings life and death.

Later on, Fir`awn imitated him and announced,

مَا عَلِمْتُ لَكُمْ مِّنْ إِلَـهٍ غَيْرِى

I know not that you have a god other than me. (28: 38)

This is why Ibrahim said to Nimrod,

... قَالَ إِبْرَاهِيمُ فَإِنَّ اللّهَ يَأْتِي بِالشَّمْسِ مِنَ الْمَشْرِقِ فَأْتِ بِهَا مِنَ الْمَغْرِبِ ...

Ibrahim said, "Verily, Allah brings the sun from the east; then bring it you from the west".

This Ayah means,

"You claim that it is you who brings life and death. He who brings life and death controls the existence and creates whatever is in it, including controlling its planets and their movements. For instance, the sun rises everyday from the east. Therefore, if you were god, as you claimed, bringing life and death, then bring the sun from the west.''

Since the king was aware of his weakness, inadequacy and that he was not able to reply to Ibrahim's request, he was idle, silent and unable to comment. Therefore, the proof was established against him.

... فَبُهِتَ الَّذِي كَفَرَ ...

So the disbeliever was utterly defeated.

Allah said,

... وَاللّهُ لاَ يَهْدِي الْقَوْمَ الظَّالِمِينَ ﴿٢٥٨﴾

And Allah guides not the people, who are wrongdoers.

meaning, Allah deprives the unjust people of any valid proof or argument. Furthermore, their false proof and arguments are annulled by their Lord, and they have earned His anger and will suffer severe torment.

The meaning that we provided is better than the meaning that some philosophers offered, claiming that Ibrahim used the second argument because it was clearer than the first one. Rather, our explanation asserts that Ibrahim refuted both claims of Nimrod, all praise is due to Allah.

As-Suddi stated that the debate between Ibrahim and Nimrod occurred after Ibrahim was thrown in the fire, for Ibrahim did not meet the king before that day.

259

أَوْ كَالَّذِى مَرَّ عَلَى قَرْيَةٍ وَهِىَ خَاوِيَةٌ عَلَى عُرُوشِهَا قَالَ أَنَّى يُحْىِ هَـذِهِ اللَّهُ بَعْدَ مَوْتِهَا

Or like the one who passed by a town in ruin up to its roofs. He said: "How will Allah ever bring it to life after its death!''

فَأَمَاتَهُ اللَّهُ مِاْئَةَ عَامٍ ثُمَّ بَعَثَهُ قَالَ كَمْ لَبِثْتَ

So Allah caused him to die for a hundred years, then raised him up (again). He said: "How long did you remain (dead)!''

قَالَ لَبِثْتُ يَوْمًا أَوْ بَعْضَ يَوْمٍ

He (the man) said: "(Perhaps) I remained (dead) a day or part of a day.''

قَالَ بَل لَّبِثْتَ مِاْئَةَ عَامٍ فَانظُرْ إِلَى طَعَامِكَ وَشَرَابِكَ لَمْ يَتَسَنَّهْ وَانظُرْ إِلَى حِمَارِكَ وَلِنَجْعَلَكَ ءَايَةً لِلنَّاسِ وَانظُرْ إِلَى العِظَامِ كَيْفَ نُنشِزُهَا ثُمَّ نَكْسُوهَا لَحْمًا

He said: "Nay, you have remained (dead) for a hundred years, look at your food and your drink, they show no change; and look at your donkey! And thus We have made of you a sign for the people. Look at the bones, how We bring them together and clothe them with flesh.''

 فَلَمَّا تَبَيَّنَ لَهُ قَالَ أَعْلَمُ أَنَّ اللَّهَ عَلَى كُلِّ شَيْءٍ قَدِيرٌ

When this was clearly shown to him, he said, "I know (now) that Allah is able to do all things.''

The Story of Uzayr

Allah's statement, أَلَمْ تَرَ إِلَى الَّذِي حَآجَّ إِبْرَاهِيمَ فِي رِبِّهِ  (Have you not looked at him who disputed with Ibrahim about his Lord) means, "Have you seen anyone like the person who disputed with Ibrahim about his Lord!''

Then, Allah connected the Ayah,

أَوْ كَالَّذِي مَرَّ عَلَى قَرْيَةٍ وَهِيَ خَاوِيَةٌ عَلَى عُرُوشِهَا ...  

Or like the one who passed by a town in ruin up to its roofs,

to the Ayah above by using `or'. Ibn Abi Hatim recorded that Ali bin Abi Talib said that; the Ayah  meant Uzayr.

Ibn Jarir also reported it, and this explanation was also reported by Ibn Jarir and Ibn Abi Hatim from Ibn Abbas, Al-Hasan, Qatadah, As-Suddi and Sulayman bin Buraydah.

Mujahid bin Jabr said that; the Ayah refers to a man from the Children of Israel, and the village was Jerusalem, after Nebuchadnezzar destroyed it and killed its people.

وَهِيَ خَاوِيَةٌ  (in ruin) means, it became empty of people.

Allah's statement, عَلَى عُرُوشِهَا  (up to its roofs) indicates that the roofs and walls (of the village) fell to the ground.

Uzayr stood contemplating about what had happened to that city, after a great civilization used to inhabit it.

... قَالَ أَنَّىَ يُحْيِـي هَـَذِهِ اللّهُ بَعْدَ مَوْتِهَا ...

He said: "Oh! How will Allah ever bring it to life after its death!

because of the utter destruction he saw and the implausibility of its returning to what it used to be.

... فَأَمَاتَهُ اللّهُ مِئَةَ عَامٍ ثُمَّ بَعَثَهُ ...

So Allah caused him to die for a hundred years, then raised him up (again).

The city was rebuilt seventy years after the man (Uzayr) died, and its inhabitants increased and the Children of Israel moved back to it. When Allah resurrected Uzayr after he died, the first organ that He resurrected were his eyes, so that he could witness what Allah does with him, how He brings life back to his body. When his resurrection was complete, Allah said to him, meaning through the angel,

... قَالَ كَمْ لَبِثْتَ قَالَ لَبِثْتُ يَوْمًا أَوْ بَعْضَ يَوْمٍ ...

He said: "How long did you remain (dead)!'' He (the man) said: "(Perhaps) I remained (dead) a day or part of a day.''

The scholars said that since the man died in the early part of the day and Allah resurrected him in the latter part of the day, when he saw that the sun was still apparent, he thought that it was the sun of that very day. He said, أَوْ بَعْضَ يَوْمٍ  ("Or part of a day'').

... قَالَ بَل لَّبِثْتَ مِئَةَ عَامٍ فَانظُرْ إِلَى طَعَامِكَ وَشَرَابِكَ لَمْ يَتَسَنَّهْ ...

He said: "Nay, you have remained (dead) for a hundred years, look at your food and your drink, they show no change.''

He had grapes, figs and juice, and he found them as he left them; neither did the juice spoil nor the figs become bitter nor the grapes rot.

... وَانظُرْ إِلَى حِمَارِكَ ...

And look at your donkey!

"How Allah brings it back to life while you are watching.''

... وَلِنَجْعَلَكَ آيَةً لِّلنَّاسِ ...

And thus We have made of you a sign for the people,

that Resurrection occurs.

... وَانظُرْ إِلَى العِظَامِ كَيْفَ نُنشِزُهَا ...

Look at the bones, how We Nunshizuha,

meaning, collect them and put them back together.

In his Mustadrak, Al-Hakim, recorded that; Kharijah bin Zayd bin Thabit said that his father said that the Messenger of Allah read this Ayah, كَيْفَ نُنشِزُهَا  (how We Nunshizuha).

Al-Hakim said; "Its chain is Sahih and they (Al-Bukhari and Muslim) did not record it.''

The Ayah was also read, نُنشِرُهَا  "Nunshiruha''

meaning, bring them back to life, as Mujahid stated.

... ثُمَّ نَكْسُوهَا لَحْمًا ...

And clothe them with flesh.

As-Suddi said,

"Uzayr observed the bones of his donkey, which were scattered all around him to his right and left, and Allah sent a wind that collected the bones from all over the area. Allah then brought every bone to its place, until they formed a full donkey made of fleshless bones. Allah then covered these bones with flesh, nerves, veins and skin. Allah sent an angel who blew life in the donkeys' nostrils, and the donkey started to bray by Allah's leave.''

... فَلَمَّا تَبَيَّنَ لَهُ ...

When this was clearly shown to him,

All this occurred while Uzayr was watching, and this is when he proclaimed,

... قَالَ أَعْلَمُ أَنَّ اللّهَ عَلَى كُلِّ شَيْءٍ قَدِيرٌ ﴿٢٥٩﴾

He said, "I know (now) that Allah is able to do all things.''

meaning, "I know that, and I did witness it with my own eyes. Therefore, I am the most knowledgeable in this matter among the people of my time.''

260

وَإِذْ قَالَ إِبْرَهِيمُ رَبِّ أَرِنِى كَيْفَ تُحْىِ الْمَوْتَى

And (remember) when Ibrahim said, "My Lord! Show me how You give life to the dead.''

قَالَ أَوَلَمْ تُؤْمِن

He (Allah) said: "Do you not believe!''

قَالَ بَلَى وَلَـكِن لِّيَطْمَئِنَّ قَلْبِى

He (Ibrahim) said: "Yes (I believe), but to be stronger in faith.''

قَالَ فَخُذْ أَرْبَعَةً مِّنَ الطَّيْرِ فَصُرْهُنَّ إِلَيْكَ ثُمَّ اجْعَلْ عَلَى كُلِّ جَبَلٍ مِّنْهُنَّ جُزْءًا ثُمَّ ادْعُهُنَّ يَأْتِينَكَ سَعْيًا

He said: "Take four birds, then cause them to incline towards you (then slaughter them, cut them into pieces), and then put a portion of them on every hill, and call them, they will come to you in haste.

وَاعْلَمْ أَنَّ اللَّهَ عَزِيزٌ حَكِيمٌ

And know that Allah is All-Mighty, All-Wise.''

The Khalil Supplicates to Allah to Show Him How He Resurrects the Dead

Allah tells;

وَإِذْ قَالَ إِبْرَاهِيمُ رَبِّ أَرِنِي كَيْفَ تُحْيِـي الْمَوْتَى قَالَ أَوَلَمْ تُؤْمِن قَالَ بَلَى وَلَـكِن لِّيَطْمَئِنَّ قَلْبِي ...

"My Lord! Show me how You give life to the dead.''

He (Allah) said: "Do you not believe!''

He (Ibrahim) said: "Yes (I believe), but to be stronger in faith.''

The scholars said that;

there are reasons behind this request by Ibrahim. For instance, when Ibrahim said to Nimrod, رَبِّيَ الَّذِي يُحْيِـي وَيُمِيتُ  (My Lord (Allah) is He Who gives life and causes death,) he wanted to solidify his knowledge about resurrection by actually witnessing it with his eyes.

Al-Bukhari recorded that Abu Hurayrah said that the Messenger of Allah said,

نَحْنُ أَحَقُّ بِالشَّكِّ مِنْ إِبْرَاهِيمَ إِذْ قَالَ

رَبِّ أَرِنِي كَيْفَ تُحْيِـي الْمَوْتَى قَالَ أَوَلَمْ تُؤْمِن قَالَ بَلَى وَلَـكِن لِّيَطْمَئِنَّ قَلْبِي  

We are more liable to be in doubt than Ibrahim when he said, "My Lord! Show me how You give life to the dead.'' Allah said, "Don't you believe!'' Ibrahim said, "Yes (I believe), but (I ask) in order to be stronger in faith.''

The Prophet's statement in the Hadith means, "We are more liable to seek certainty.''

The Answer to Al-Khalil's Request

Allah said,

... قَالَ فَخُذْ أَرْبَعَةً مِّنَ الطَّيْرِ فَصُرْهُنَّ إِلَيْكَ ...

He said: "Take four birds, then cause them to incline towards you.''

Scholars of Tafsir disagreed over the type of birds mentioned here, although this matter in not relevant due to the fact that the Qur'an did not mention it.

Allah's statement,

... فَصُرْهُنَّ إِلَيْكَ ...

cause them to incline towards you,

means, cut them to pieces.

This is the explanation of Ibn Abbas, Ikrimah, Sa`id bin Jubayr, Abu Malik, Abu Al-Aswad Ad-Dili, Wahb bin Munabbih, Al-Hasan and As-Suddi.

... ثُمَّ اجْعَلْ عَلَى كُلِّ جَبَلٍ مِّنْهُنَّ جُزْءًا ثُمَّ ادْعُهُنَّ يَأْتِينَكَ سَعْيًا ...

and then put a portion of them on every hill, and call them, they will come to you in haste.

Therefore, Ibrahim caught four birds, slaughtered them, removed the feathers, tore the birds to pieces and mixed the pieces together. He then placed parts of these mixed pieces on four or seven hills.

Ibn Abbas said,

"Ibrahim kept the heads of these birds in his hand. Next, Allah commanded Ibrahim to call the birds to him, and he did as Allah commanded him. Ibrahim witnessed the feathers, blood and flesh of these birds fly to each other, and the parts flew each to their bodies, until every bird came back to life and came walking at a fast pace towards Ibrahim, so that the example that Ibrahim was witnessing would become more impressive.

Each bird came to collect its head from Ibrahim's hand, and if he gave the bird another head the bird refused to accept it. When Ibrahim gave each bird its own head, the head was placed on its body by Allah's leave and power. ''

This is why Allah said,

... وَاعْلَمْ أَنَّ اللّهَ عَزِيزٌ حَكِيمٌ ﴿٢٦٠﴾

And know that Allah is All-Mighty, All-Wise.

and no one can overwhelm or resist Him. Whatever Allah wills, occurs without hindrance, because He is the All-Mighty, Supreme above all things, and He is Wise in His statements, actions, legislation and decrees.

Abdur-Razzaq recorded that Ma`mar said that Ayub said that Ibn Abbas commented on what Ibrahim said, وَلَـكِن لِّيَطْمَئِنَّ قَلْبِي (but to be stronger in Faith),

"To me, there is no Ayah in the Qur'an that brings more hope than this Ayah.''

Ibn Abi Hatim recorded that Muhammad bin Al-Munkadir said that;

Abdullah bin Abbas met Abdullah bin Amr bin Al-`As and said to him, "Which Ayah in the Qur'an carries more hope for you?''

Ibn Amr said,

قُلْ يعِبَادِىَ الَّذِينَ أَسْرَفُواْ عَلَى أَنفُسِهِمْ لاَ تَقْنَطُواْ

Say: "O Ibadi (My servants) who have transgressed against themselves (by committing evil deeds and sins)! Despair not. (39:53)

Ibn Abbas said, "But I say that it is Allah's statement,

وَإِذْ قَالَ إِبْرَاهِيمُ رَبِّ أَرِنِي كَيْفَ تُحْيِـي الْمَوْتَى قَالَ أَوَلَمْ تُؤْمِن قَالَ بَلَى

And (remember) when Ibrahim said, "My Lord! Show me how You give life to the dead.'' He (Allah) said: "Do you not believe!'' He (Ibrahim) said: "Yes (I believe)...

Allah accepted Ibrahim's affirmation when he merely said, `Yes.'

This Ayah refers to the doubts that attack the heart and the thoughts that Shaytan inspires.''

Al-Hakim also recorded this in Al-Mustadrak and said; "Its chain is Sahih but they did not record it.''

261

مَّثَلُ الَّذِينَ يُنفِقُونَ أَمْوَلَهُمْ فِي سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ كَمَثَلِ حَبَّةٍ أَنبَتَتْ سَبْعَ سَنَابِلَ فِي كُلِّ سُنبُلَةٍ مِّاْئَةُ حَبَّةٍ

The parable of those who spend their wealth in the way of Allah, is that of a grain (of corn); it grows seven ears, and each ear has a hundred grains.

وَاللَّهُ يُضَـعِفُ لِمَن يَشَآءُ وَاللَّهُ وَسِعٌ عَلِيمٌ

Allah gives manifold increase to whom He wills. And Allah is All-Sufficient for His creatures' needs, All-Knower.

Rewards of Spending in Allah's Cause

Allah says;

مَّثَلُ الَّذِينَ يُنفِقُونَ أَمْوَالَهُمْ فِي سَبِيلِ اللّهِ كَمَثَلِ حَبَّةٍ أَنبَتَتْ سَبْعَ سَنَابِلَ فِي كُلِّ سُنبُلَةٍ مِّئَةُ حَبَّةٍ ...

The parable of those who spend their wealth in the way of Allah, is that of a grain (of corn); it grows seven ears, and each ear has a hundred grains.

This is a parable that Allah made of the multiplication of rewards for those who spend in His cause, seeking His pleasure. Allah multiplies the good deed ten to seven hundred times.

Allah said, مَّثَلُ الَّذِينَ يُنفِقُونَ أَمْوَالَهُمْ فِي سَبِيلِ اللّهِ  (The parable of those who spend their wealth in the way of Allah...),Sa`id bin Jubayr commented, "Meaning spending in Allah's obedience.''

Makhul said that the Ayah means, "Spending on Jihad, on horse stalls, weapons and so forth.''

The parable in the Ayah is more impressive on the heart than merely mentioning the number seven hundred. This Ayah indicates that Allah `grows' the good deeds for its doers, just as He grows the plant for whoever sows it in fertile land.

The Sunnah also mentions that the deeds are multiplied up to seven hundred folds. For instance, Imam Ahmad recorded that Abu Mas`ud said that a man once gave away a camel, with its bridle on, in the cause of Allah and the Messenger of Allah said,

لَتَأْتِيَنَّ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ بِسَبْعِمِائَةِ نَاقَةٍ مَخْطُومَة

On the Day of Resurrection, you will have seven hundred camels with their bridles.

Muslim and An-Nasa'i also recorded this Hadith, and Muslim's narration reads,

"A man brought a camel with its bridle on and said, `O Messenger of Allah! This is in the sake of Allah.'

The Messenger said,

لَكَ بِهَا يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ سَبْعُمِائَةِ نَاقَة

You will earn seven hundred camels as reward for it on the Day of Resurrection.

Another Hadith:

Ahmad recorded that Abu Hurayrah said that the Messenger of Allah said,

كُلُّ عَمَلِ ابْنِ آدَمَ يُضَاعَفُ، الْحَسَنَةُ بِعَشَرِ أَمْثَالِهَا، إِلَى سَبْعِمِائَةِ ضِعْفٍ، إِلى مَا شَاءَ اللهُ،

Every good deed that the son of Adam performs will be multiplied ten folds, to seven hundred folds, to many other folds, to as much as Allah wills.

يَقُولُ اللهُ: إِلَّا الصَّوْمَ فَإِنَّهُ لِي، وَأَنَا أَجْزِي بِهِ، يَدَعُ طَعَامَهُ وَشَهْوَتَهُ مِنْ أَجْلِي،

Allah said, "Except the fast, for it is for Me and I will reward for it. One abandons his food and desire in My sake.''

وَلِلصَّائِمِ فَرْحَتَانِ: فَرْحَةٌ عِنْدَ فِطْرِهِ وَفَرْحَةٌ عِنْدَ لِقَاءِ رَبِّهِ،

The fasting person has two times of happiness: when he breaks his fast and when he meets his Lord.

وَلَخَلُوفُ فَمِ الصَّائِمِ أَطْيَبُ عِنْدَ اللهِ مِنْ رِيحِ الْمِسْكِ،

Verily, the odor that comes from the mouth of whoever fasts is more pure to Allah than the scent of musk.

الصَّوْمُ جُنَّةٌ، الصَّومُ جُنَّة

Fasting is a shield (against sinning), fasting is a shield.

Muslim recorded this Hadith.

Allah's statement,

...  وَاللّهُ يُضَاعِفُ لِمَن يَشَاء ...

Allah gives manifold increase to whom He wills,

is according to the person's sincerity in his deeds.

... وَاللّهُ وَاسِعٌ عَلِيمٌ ﴿٢٦١﴾

And Allah is All-Sufficient for His creatures' needs, All-Knower.

meaning, His Favor is so wide that it encompasses much more than His creation, and He has full knowledge in whoever deserves it, or does not deserve it.

All the praise and thanks are due to Allah.

262

الَّذِينَ يُنفِقُونَ أَمْولَهُمْ فِى سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ ثُمَّ لاَ يُتْبِعُونَ مَآ أَنْفَقُواْ مَنّا وَلا أَذًى لَّهُمْ أَجْرُهُمْ عِندَ رَبّهِمْ

Those who spend their wealth in the cause of Allah, and do not follow up their gifts with reminders of their generosity or with injury, their reward is with their Lord.

وَلاَ خَوْفٌ عَلَيْهِمْ وَلاَ هُمْ يَحْزَنُونَ

On them shall be no fear, nor shall they grieve.

263

قَوْلٌ مَّعْرُوفٌ وَمَغْفِرَةٌ خَيْرٌ مّن صَدَقَةٍ يَتْبَعُهَآ أَذًى

Kind words and forgiving of faults are better than Sadaqah (charity) followed by injury.

وَاللَّهُ غَنِىٌّ حَلِيمٌ

And Allah is Rich (free of all needs) and He is Most Forbearing.

264

يأَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ ءامَنُواْ لاَ تُبْطِلُواْ صَدَقَـتِكُم بِالْمَنّ وَالاْذَى كَالَّذِى يُنفِقُ مَالَهُ رِئَآء النَّاسِ وَلاَ يُؤْمِنُ بِاللَّهِ وَالْيَوْمِ الاْخِرِ

O you who believe! Do not render in vain your Sadaqah (charity) by reminders of your generosity or by injury, like him who spends his wealth to be seen of men, and he does not believe in Allah, nor in the Last Day.

فَمَثَلُهُ كَمَثَلِ صَفْوَانٍ عَلَيْهِ تُرَابٌ فَأَصَابَهُ وَابِلٌ فَتَرَكَهُ صَلْدًا

His likeness is the likeness of a smooth rock on which is a little dust; on it falls heavy rain which leaves it bare.

لاَّ يَقْدِرُونَ عَلَى شَىْء مّمَّا كَسَبُواْ وَاللَّهُ لاَ يَهْدِي الْقَوْمَ الْكَـفِرِينَ

They are not able to do anything with what they have earned. And Allah does not guide the disbelieving people.

To Remind About Charity Given is Forbidden

Allah says;

الَّذِينَ يُنفِقُونَ أَمْوَالَهُمْ فِي سَبِيلِ اللّهِ ثُمَّ لاَ يُتْبِعُونَ مَا أَنفَقُواُ مَنًّا وَلاَ أَذًى لَّهُمْ أَجْرُهُمْ عِندَ رَبِّهِمْ ...

Those who spend their wealth in the cause of Allah, and do not follow up their gifts with reminders of their generosity or with injury, their reward is with their Lord.

Allah praises those who spend from their money in His cause, and then refrain from reminding those who received the charity of that fact, whether these hints take the form of words or actions.

Allah's statement, وَلاَ أَذًى  (or with injury), indicates that they do not cause harm to those whom they gave the charity to, for this harm will only annul the charity.

Allah next promised them the best rewards for this good deed, لَّهُمْ أَجْرُهُمْ عِندَ رَبِّهِمْ   (their reward is with their Lord), indicating that Allah Himself will reward them for these righteous actions.

Further,

... وَلاَ خَوْفٌ عَلَيْهِمْ ...

On them shall be no fear,

regarding the horrors of the Day of Resurrection,

... وَلاَ هُمْ يَحْزَنُونَ ﴿٢٦٢﴾

nor shall they grieve.

regarding the offspring that they leave behind and the adornment and delights of this world. They will not feel sorry for this, because they will acquire what is far better for them.

Allah then said,

قَوْلٌ مَّعْرُوفٌ ...  

Kind words,

meaning, compassionate words and a supplication for Muslims.

... وَمَغْفِرَةٌ ...

and forgiving,

meaning, forgiving an injustice that took the form of actions or words.

... خَيْرٌ مِّن صَدَقَةٍ يَتْبَعُهَآ أَذًى ...

are better than Sadaqah (charity) followed by injury.

... وَاللّهُ غَنِيٌّ ...

And Allah is Rich,

not needing His creation.

... حَلِيمٌ  ﴿٢٦٣﴾

Most Forbearing.

forgives, releases and pardons them.

There are several Hadiths that prohibit reminding people of acts of charity. For instance, Muslim recorded that Abu Dharr said that the Messenger of Allah said,

ثَلَاثَةٌ لَا يُكَلِّمُهُمُ اللهُ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ، وَلَا يَنْظُرُ إِلَيْهِم، وَلَا يُزَكِّيهِمْ، وَلَهُمْ عَذَابٌ أَلِيمٌ:

ˇ الْمَنَّانُ بِمَا أَعْطَى،

ˇ وَالْمُسْبِلُ إِزَارَهُ،

ˇ وَالْمُنَفِّقُ سِلْعَتَهُ بِالْحَلِفِ الْكَاذِب

Three persons whom Allah shall neither speak to on the Day of Resurrection nor look at nor purify, and they shall receive a painful torment:

ˇ he who reminds (the people) of what he gives away,

ˇ he who lengthens his clothes below the ankles and

ˇ he who swears an oath while lying, to sell his merchandise.

This is why Allah said,

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ لاَ تُبْطِلُواْ صَدَقَاتِكُم بِالْمَنِّ وَالأذَى ...   

O you who believe! Do not render in vain your Sadaqah (charity) by reminders of your generosity or by injury,

stating that the charity will be rendered in vain if it is followed by harm or reminders. In this case, the reward of giving away charity is not sufficient enough to nullify the harm and reminders.

Allah then said,

... كَالَّذِي يُنفِقُ مَالَهُ رِئَاء النَّاسِ ...

like him who spends his wealth to be seen of men,

meaning, "Do not nullify your acts of charity by following them with reminders and harm, just like the charity of those who give it to show off to people.''

The boasting person pretends to give away charity for Allah's sake, but in reality seeks to gain people's praise and the reputation of being kind or generous, or other material gains of this life. All the while, he does not think about Allah or gaining His pleasure and generous rewards, and this is why Allah said,

... وَلاَ يُؤْمِنُ بِاللّهِ وَالْيَوْمِ الآخِرِ ...

and he does not believe in Allah, nor in the Last Day.

Allah next set the example of whoever gives charity to show off.

Ad-Dahhak commented that the example fits one who follows his acts of charity with reminders or harm.

Allah said,

... فَمَثَلُهُ كَمَثَلِ صَفْوَانٍ...

His likeness is the likeness of Safwan,

where Safwan, from is Safwanah, meaning `the smooth rocks,'

... عَلَيْهِ تُرَابٌ فَأَصَابَهُ وَابِلٌ ...

on which is little dust; on it falls a Wabil,

meaning, heavy rain.

... فَتَرَكَهُ صَلْدًا ...

which leaves it bare.

This Ayah means that heavy rain left the Safwan completely barren of dust. Such is the case with Allah's action regarding the work of those who show off, as their deeds are bound to vanish and disappear, even though people think that these deeds are as plentiful as specks of dust.

So Allah said,

... لاَّ يَقْدِرُونَ عَلَى شَيْءٍ مِّمَّا كَسَبُواْ وَاللّهُ لاَ يَهْدِي الْقَوْمَ الْكَافِرِينَ ﴿٢٦٤﴾

They are not able to do anything with what they have earned. And Allah does not guide the disbelieving people.

265

وَمَثَلُ الَّذِينَ يُنفِقُونَ أَمْوَلَهُمُ ابْتِغَآءَ مَرْضَاتِ اللَّهِ وَتَثْبِيتًا مِّنْ أَنفُسِهِمْ كَمَثَلِ جَنَّةٍ بِرَبْوَةٍ أَصَابَهَا وَابِلٌ فَأَتَتْ أُكُلَهَا ضِعْفَيْنِ فَإِن لَّمْ يُصِبْهَا وَابِلٌ فَطَلٌّ

And the parable of those who spend their wealth seeking Allah's pleasure while they in their own selves are sure and certain that Allah will reward them (for their spending in His cause), is that of a garden on a height; heavy rain falls on it and it doubles its yield of harvest. And if it does not receive heavy rain, light rain suffices it.

وَاللَّهُ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ بَصِيرٌ

And Allah is All-Seer (knows well) of what you do.

Allah says;

وَمَثَلُ الَّذِينَ يُنفِقُونَ أَمْوَالَهُمُ ابْتِغَاء مَرْضَاتِ اللّهِ وَتَثْبِيتًا مِّنْ أَنفُسِهِمْ ...  

And the parable of those who spend their wealth seeking Allah's pleasure while they in their own selves are sure and certain that Allah will reward them (for their spending in His cause),

This is the example of the believers who give away charity seeking only Allah's pleasure, وَتَثْبِيتًا مِّنْ أَنفُسِهِمْ  (while they in their own selves are sure and certain) meaning, they are certain that Allah shall reward them for these righteous acts with the best rewards.

Similarly, in a Hadith collected by Al-Bukhari and Muslim, the Messenger of Allah said,

مَنْ صَامَ رَمَضَانَ إِيمَانًا وَاحْتِسَابًا

Whoever fasts Ramadan with faith and expectation...

meaning, believing that Allah commanded the fast, all the while awaiting His reward for fasting it.

Allah's statement,

... كَمَثَلِ جَنَّةٍ بِرَبْوَةٍ ...

is that of a garden on a Rabwah,

means, the example of a garden on `a height above the ground', as the majority of scholars have stated.

Ibn Abbas and Ad-Dahhak added that it also has flowing rivers.

Allah's statement,

... أَصَابَهَا وَابِلٌ ...

Wabil falls on it,

means, heavy rain as we stated, So it produces its,

and it doubles its yield of harvest. And if it does not receive heavy rain, light rain suffices it.

... فَآتَتْ أُكُلَهَا ...

its yield of harvest,

meaning, fruits or produce,

... ضِعْفَيْنِ ...

doubles,

as compared to other gardens.

... فَإِن لَّمْ يُصِبْهَا وَابِلٌ فَطَلٌّ ...

And if it does not receive Wabil, a Tall suffices it.

Ad-Dahhak said that; the `Tall' is light rain.

The Ayah indicates that the garden on the Rabwah is always fertile, for if heavy rain does not fall on it, light rain will suffice for it. Such is the case regarding the believer's good deeds, for they never become barren. Rather, Allah accepts the believer's righteous deeds and increases them, each according to his deeds. This is why Allah said next,

... وَاللّهُ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ بَصِيرٌ ﴿٢٦٥﴾

And Allah is All-Seer of what you do.

meaning, none of His servants' deeds ever escapes His perfect watch.

266

أَيَوَدُّ أَحَدُكُمْ أَن تَكُونَ لَهُ جَنَّةٌ مِّن نَّخِيلٍ وَأَعْنَابٍ تَجْرِى مِن تَحْتِهَا الأَنْهَـرُ لَهُ فِيهَا مِن كُلِّ الثَّمَرَتِ وَأَصَابَهُ الْكِبَرُ وَلَهُ ذُرِّيَّةٌ ضُعَفَآءُ فَأَصَابَهَآ إِعْصَارٌ فِيهِ نَارٌ فَاحْتَرَقَتْ

Would any of you wish to have a garden with date palms and vines, with rivers flowing underneath, and all kinds of fruits for him therein, while he is stricken with old age, and his children are weak (not able to look after themselves), then it is struck with a fiery whirlwind, so that it is burnt!

كَذَلِكَ يُبَيِّنُ اللَّهُ لَكُمُ الآيَـتِ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَتَفَكَّرُونَ

Thus does Allah make clear His Ayat to you that you may give thought.

The Example of Evil Deeds Nullifying Good Deeds

Allah says;

أَيَوَدُّ أَحَدُكُمْ أَن تَكُونَ لَهُ جَنَّةٌ مِّن نَّخِيلٍ وَأَعْنَابٍ تَجْرِي مِن تَحْتِهَا الأَنْهَارُ لَهُ فِيهَا مِن كُلِّ الثَّمَرَاتِ وَأَصَابَهُ الْكِبَرُ وَلَهُ ذُرِّيَّةٌ ضُعَفَاء فَأَصَابَهَا إِعْصَارٌ فِيهِ نَارٌ فَاحْتَرَقَتْ ...

Would any of you wish to have a garden with date palms and vines, with rivers flowing underneath, and all kinds of fruits for him therein, while he is stricken with old age, and his children are weak (not able to look after themselves), then it is struck with a fiery whirlwind, so that it is burnt!

Al-Bukhari recorded that Ibn Abbas and Ubayd bin Umayr said that;

Umar bin Al-Khattab asked the Companions of the Messenger of Allah, "According to your opinion, about whom was this Ayah revealed, أَيَوَدُّ أَحَدُكُمْ أَن تَكُونَ لَهُ جَنَّةٌ مِّن نَّخِيلٍ وَأَعْنَابٍ  (Would any of you wish to have a garden with date palms and vines...).''

They said, "Allah knows best.''

Umar became angry and said, "Say we know or we do not know.''

Ibn Abbas said, "O Leader of the Faithful! I have an opinion about it.''

Umar said, "O my nephew! Say your opinion and do not belittle yourself.''

Ibn Abbas said, "This is an example set for a deed.''

Umar said, "What type of deed?''

Ibn Abbas said, "For a wealthy man who works in Allah's pleasure and then Allah sends Shaytan to him, and he works in disobedience, until he annuls his good works.''

This Hadith suffices as an explanation for the Ayah, for it explains the example it sets by a person who does good first and then follows it with evil, may Allah save us from this end. So, this man annulled his previous good works with his latter evil works. When he desperately needed the deeds of the former type, there were none.

This is why Allah said,

وَأَصَابَهُ الْكِبَرُ وَلَهُ ذُرِّيَّةٌ ضُعَفَاء فَأَصَابَهَا إِعْصَارٌ  (while he is stricken with old age, and his children are weak (not able to look after themselves), then it is struck with a whirlwind) with heavy wind, فِيهِ نَارٌ فَاحْتَرَقَتْ    (that is fiery, so that it is burnt) meaning, its fruits were burnt and its trees were destroyed. Therefore, what will his condition be like!

Ibn Abi Hatim recorded that Al-Awfi said that Ibn Abbas said,

"Allah has set a good parable, and all His parables are good. He said,

أَيَوَدُّ أَحَدُكُمْ أَن تَكُونَ لَهُ جَنَّةٌ مِّن نَّخِيلٍ وَأَعْنَابٍ تَجْرِي مِن تَحْتِهَا الأَنْهَارُ لَهُ فِيهَا مِن كُلِّ الثَّمَرَاتِ

Would any of you wish to have a garden with date palms and vines, with rivers flowing underneath, and all kinds of fruits for him therein. But he lost all this in his old age, وَأَصَابَهُ الْكِبَرُ  (while he is stricken with old age) while his offspring and children are weak just before the end of his life. Then a lightning storm came and destroyed his garden.

Then he did not have the strength to grow another garden, nor did his offspring offer enough help. This is the condition of the disbeliever on the Day of Resurrection when he returns to Allah, for he will not have any good deeds to provide an excuse - or refuge - for him, just as the man in the parable had no strength to replant the garden.

The disbeliever will not find anything to resort to for help, just as the offspring of the man in the parable did not provide him with help. So he will be deprived of his reward when he most needs it, just as the man in the parable was deprived of Allah's garden when he most needed it, when he became old and his offspring weak.''

In his Mustadrak, Al-Hakim recorded that the Messenger of Allah used to say in his supplication,

اللَّهُمَّ اجْعَلْ أَوْسَعَ رِزْقِكَ عَلَيَ عِنْدَ كِبَرِ سِنِّي وَانْقِضَاءِ عُمُرِي

O Allah! Make Your biggest provision for me when I am old in age and at the time my life ends.

This is why Allah said,

... كَذَلِكَ يُبَيِّنُ اللّهُ لَكُمُ الآيَاتِ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَتَفَكَّرُونَ ﴿٢٦٦﴾

Thus Allah makes clear to you His Laws in order that you may give thought.

meaning, comprehend and understand the parables and their intended implications.

Similarly, Allah said,

وَتِلْكَ الاٌّمْثَالُ نَضْرِبُهَا لِلنَّاسِ وَمَا يَعْقِلُهَآ إِلاَّ الْعَـلِمُونَ

And these similitudes We put forward for mankind; but none will understand them except those who have knowledge (of Allah and His signs). (29:43)

267

يأَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ ءامَنُواْ أَنفِقُواْ مِن طَيّبَـتِ مَا كَسَبْتُمْ وَمِمَّآ أَخْرَجْنَا لَكُم مّنَ الاْرْضِ وَلاَ تَيَمَّمُواْ الْخَبِيثَ مِنْهُ تُنفِقُونَ وَلَسْتُم بِأَخِذِيهِ إِلا أَن تُغْمِضُواْ فِيهِ

O you who believe! Spend of the good things which you have (legally) earned, and of that which We have produced from the earth for you, and do not aim at that which is bad to spend from it, (though) you would not accept it save if you close your eyes and tolerate therein.

وَاعْلَمُواْ أَنَّ اللَّهَ غَنِيٌّ حَمِيدٌ

And know that Allah is Rich (free of all needs), and worthy of all praise.

268

الشَّيْطَـنُ يَعِدُكُمُ الْفَقْرَ وَيَأْمُرُكُم بِالْفَحْشَآء وَاللَّهُ يَعِدُكُم مَّغْفِرَةً مّنْهُ وَفَضْلاً وَاللَّهُ وسِعٌ عَلِيمٌ

Shaytan threatens you with poverty and orders you to commit Fahishah' (evil deeds) whereas Allah promises you forgiveness from Himself and bounty, and Allah is All-Sufficient for His creatures' needs, All-Knower.

269

يُؤْتِى الْحِكْمَةَ مَن يَشَآءُ وَمَن يُؤْتَ الْحِكْمَةَ فَقَدْ أُوتِىَ خَيْرًا كَثِيرًا وَمَا يَذَّكَّرُ إِلاَّ أُوْلُواْ الأَلْبَـبِ

He grants Hikmah to whom He wills, and he, to whom Hikmah is granted, is indeed granted abundant good. But none remember (will receive admonition) except men of understanding.

The Encouragement to Spend Honest Money for Allah's Sake

Allah says;

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ أَنفِقُواْ مِن طَيِّبَاتِ مَا كَسَبْتُمْ وَمِمَّا أَخْرَجْنَا لَكُم مِّنَ الأَرْضِ وَلاَ تَيَمَّمُواْ الْخَبِيثَ مِنْهُ تُنفِقُونَ وَلَسْتُم بِآخِذِيهِ إِلاَّ أَن تُغْمِضُواْ فِيهِ ...

O you who believe! Spend of the good things which you have (legally) earned, and of that which We have produced from the earth for you, and do not aim at that which is bad to spend from it, (though) you would not accept it save if you close your eyes and tolerate therein.

Allah commands His believing servants to spend in charity, as Ibn Abbas stated, from the pure, honest money that they earned and from the fruits and vegetables that He has grown for them in the land.

Ibn Abbas said,

"Allah commanded them to spend from the purest, finest and best types of their money and prohibited spending from evil and dishonest money, because Allah is pure and good and only accepts that which is pure and good.''

This is why Allah said, وَلاَ تَيَمَّمُواْ الْخَبِيثَ  (and do not aim at that which is bad) meaning, filthy (impure) money, مِنْهُ تُنفِقُونَ وَلَسْتُم بِآخِذِيهِ  (to spend from it, (though) you would not accept it) meaning,

"If you were given this type, you would not take it, except if you tolerate the deficiency in it. Verily, Allah is far Richer than you, He is in no need of this money, so do not give, for His sake, what you would dislike for yourselves.''

It was reported that, وَلاَ تَيَمَّمُواْ الْخَبِيثَ مِنْهُ تُنفِقُونَ (and do not aim at that which is bad to spend from it) means, "Do not spend from the dishonest, impure money instead of the honest, pure money.''

Ibn Jarir recorded that Al-Bara bin Azib commented on Allah's statement, يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ أَنفِقُواْ مِن طَيِّبَاتِ مَا كَسَبْتُمْ وَمِمَّا أَخْرَجْنَا لَكُم مِّنَ الأَرْضِ وَلاَ تَيَمَّمُواْ الْخَبِيثَ مِنْهُ تُنفِقُونَ  (O you who believe! Spend of the good things which you have (legally) earned, and of that which We have produced from the earth for you, and do not aim at that which is bad to spend from it),

that it was revealed about the Ansar. When the season for harvesting date-trees would start, the Ansar would collect ripe-date branches from their gardens and hang them on a rope erected between two pillars in the Masjid of the Messenger of Allah. The poor emigrant Companions would eat from these dates. However, some of them (Ansar) would also add lesser type of dates in between ripe-date branches, thinking they are allowed to do so. Allah revealed this Ayah about those who did this, وَلاَ تَيَمَّمُواْ الْخَبِيثَ مِنْهُ تُنفِقُونَ  (and do not aim at that which is bad to spend from it).

Ali bin Abi Talhah said that Ibn Abbas commented on the Ayah, وَلَسْتُم بِآخِذِيهِ إِلاَّ أَن تُغْمِضُواْ فِيهِ  (you would not accept it save if you close your eyes and tolerate therein) means,

"If you had a right on someone who would pay you less than what you gave them, you would not agree until you require more from them to make up the difference. This is why Allah said, وَلَسْتُم بِآخِذِيهِ إِلاَّ أَن تُغْمِضُواْ فِيهِ  (save if you close your eyes and tolerate therein) meaning,

`How do you agree for Me what you do not agree for yourselves, while I have a right to the best and most precious of your possessions!'''

Ibn Abi Hatim and Ibn Jarir recorded this Hadith and Ibn Jarir added, "And this is the meaning of Allah's statement,

لَن تَنَالُواْ الْبِرَّ حَتَّى تُنفِقُواْ مِمَّا تُحِبُّونَ

By no means shall you attain Al-Birr, unless you spend of that which you love.'' (4:92)

Allah said next,

... وَاعْلَمُواْ أَنَّ اللّهَ غَنِيٌّ حَمِيدٌ ﴿٢٦٧﴾

And know that Allah is Rich (free of all needs), and worthy of all praise.

meaning, "Although Allah commanded you to give away the purest of your money in charity, He is far Richer from needing your charity, but the purpose is that the distance between the rich and the poor becomes less.''

Similarly, Allah said,

لَن يَنَالَ اللَّهَ لُحُومُهَا وَلاَ دِمَآؤُهَا وَلَـكِن يَنَالُهُ التَّقْوَى مِنكُمْ

It is neither their meat nor their blood that reaches Allah, but it is piety from you that reaches Him. (22:37)

Allah is Rich and free of needing anything from any of His creatures, while all of His creatures stand in need of Him.

Allah's bounty encompassing, and what He has never ends. Therefore, whoever gives away good and pure things in charity, let him know that Allah is the Most Rich, His favor is enormous and He is Most Generous, Most Compassionate; and He shall reward him for his charity and multiply it many times. So who would lend to He Who is neither poor nor unjust, Who is worthy of all praise in all His actions, statements, and decisions, of Whom there is neither a deity worthy of worship except Him, nor a Lord other than Him.

Satanic Doubts Concerning Spending in Charity

Allah said,

الشَّيْطَانُ يَعِدُكُمُ الْفَقْرَ وَيَأْمُرُكُم بِالْفَحْشَاء وَاللّهُ يَعِدُكُم مَّغْفِرَةً مِّنْهُ وَفَضْلاً ...  

Shaytan threatens you with poverty and orders you to commit Fahishah'; whereas Allah promises you forgiveness from Himself and bounty, and Allah is All-Sufficient for His creatures' needs, All-Knower.

Ibn Abi Hatim recorded that Abdullah bin Mas`ud said that the Messenger of Allah said,

إِنَّ لِلشَّيْطَانِ لَمَّةً بِابْنِ آدَمَ، وَلِلْمَلَكِ لَمَّةً، فَأَمَّا لَمَّةُ الشَّيطَانِ فَإِيعَادٌ بِالشَّرِّ، وَتَكْذِيبٌ بِالْحَقِّ، وَ أَمَّا لَمَّةُ الْمَلَكِ فَإِيعَادٌ بِالْخَيْرِ، وَتَصْدِيقٌ بِالْحَقِّ، فَمَنْ وَجَدَ ذَلِكَ فَلْيَعْلَمْ أَنَّهُ مِنَ اللهِ، فَلْيَحْمَدِ اللهَ، وَمَنْ وَجَدَ الْأُخْرَى فَلْيَتَعَوَّذْ مِنَ الشَّيْطَان

Shaytan has an effect on the son of Adam, and the angel also has an effect.

As for the effect of Shaytan, it is by his threatening with evil repercussions and rejecting the truth.

As for the effect of the angel, it is by his promise of a good end and believing in the truth. Whoever finds the latter, let him know that it is coming from Allah and let him thank Allah for it.

Whoever finds the former, let him seek refuge - with Allah - from Shaytan.

The Prophet then recited,

الشَّيْطَانُ يَعِدُكُمُ الْفَقْرَ وَيَأْمُرُكُم بِالْفَحْشَاء وَاللّهُ يَعِدُكُم مَّغْفِرَةً مِّنْهُ وَفَضْلاً

Shaytan threatens you with poverty and orders you to commit Fahishah'; whereas Allah promises you forgiveness from Himself and bounty.

This is the narration that At-Tirmidhi and An-Nasa'i collected in the book of Tafsir in their Sunan collections.

Allah said,

الشَّيْطَانُ يَعِدُكُمُ الْفَقْرَ ...

Shaytan threatens you with poverty,

so that you hold on to whatever you have and refrain from spending it in Allah's pleasure.

... وَيَأْمُرُكُم بِالْفَحْشَاء ...

And orders you to commit Fahishah',

meaning, "Shaytan forbids you from spending in charity because of the false fear of becoming poor, and he encourages evil deeds, sins, indulging in what is prohibited, and immoral conduct.''

Allah said,

... وَاللّهُ يَعِدُكُم مَّغْفِرَةً مِّنْهُ ...

Whereas Allah promises you forgiveness from Himself,

instead of the evil that Shaytan enjoins on you.

... وَفَضْلاً ...

And Bounty,

as opposed to the poverty that Shaytan frightens you with.

... وَاللّهُ وَاسِعٌ عَلِيمٌ  ﴿٢٦٨﴾

And Allah is All-Sufficient for His creatures' needs, All-Knower.

The Meaning of Al-Hikmah

Allah said,

يُؤتِي الْحِكْمَةَ مَن يَشَاء وَمَن يُؤْتَ الْحِكْمَةَ فَقَدْ أُوتِيَ خَيْرًا كَثِيرًا ...  

He grants Hikmah to whom He wills, and he, to whom Hikmah is granted, is indeed granted abundant good.

يُؤتِي الْحِكْمَةَ مَن يَشَاء  (He grants Hikmah to whom He wills),

Ali bin Abi Talhah reported that Ibn Abbas said, "That is knowledge of the Qur'an. For instance, the abrogating and the abrogated, what is plain and clear and what is not as plain and clear, what it allows, and what it does not allow, and its parables.''

Imam Ahmad recorded that Ibn Mas`ud said that he heard the Messenger of Allah saying,

لَا حَسَدَ إِلَّا فِي اثْنَتَيْنِ: رَجُلٌ آتَاهُ اللهُ مَالًا فَسَلَّطَهُ عَلَى هَلَكَتِهِ فِي الْحَقِّ، وَرَجُلٌ آتَاهُ اللهُ حِكْمَةً فَهُوَ يَقْضِي بِهَا وَيُعَلِّمُهَا

There is no envy except in two instances: a person whom Allah has endowed with wealth and he spends it righteously, and a person whom Allah has given Hikmah and he judges by it and teaches it to others.

This was also collected by Al-Bukhari, Muslim, An-Nasa'i, Ibn Majah.

Allah's statement,

... وَمَا يَذَّكَّرُ إِلاَّ أُوْلُواْ الأَلْبَابِ ﴿٢٦٩﴾

But none remember (will receive admonition) except men of understanding.

means, "Those who will benefit from the advice are those who have sound minds and good comprehension with which they understand the words (of advice and reminder) and their implications.''

270

وَمَآ أَنفَقْتُم مِّن نَّفَقَةٍ أَوْ نَذَرْتُم مِّن نَّذْرٍ فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ يَعْلَمُهُ وَمَا لِلظَّـلِمِينَ مِنْ أَنصَارٍ

And whatever you spend for spendings (e.g., in Sadaqah) or whatever vow you make, be sure Allah knows it all. And for the wrongdoers there are no helpers.

271

إِن تُبْدُواْ الصَّدَقَـتِ فَنِعِمَّا هِىَ وَإِن تُخْفُوهَا وَتُؤْتُوهَا الْفُقَرَآءَ فَهُوَ خَيْرٌ لَّكُمْ

If you disclose your Sadaqat (almsgiving), it is well; but if you conceal them and give them to the poor, that is better for you.

وَيُكَفِّرُ عَنكُم مِّن سَيِّئَاتِكُمْ وَاللَّهُ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ خَبِيرٌ

(Allah) will expiate you some of your sins. And Allah is Well-Acquainted with what you do.

Allah says;

وَمَا أَنفَقْتُم مِّن نَّفَقَةٍ أَوْ نَذَرْتُم مِّن نَّذْرٍ فَإِنَّ اللّهَ يَعْلَمُهُ ...  

And whatever you spend for spendings (e.g., in Sadaqah) or whatever vow you make, be sure Allah knows it all.

Allah states that He has perfect knowledge of the good deeds performed by all of His creation, such as charity and various vows, and He rewards tremendously for these deeds, provided they are performed seeking His Face and His promise.

Allah also warns those who do not work in his obedience, but instead disobey His command, reject His revelation and worship others besides Him:

... وَمَا لِلظَّالِمِينَ مِنْ أَنصَارٍ ﴿٢٧٠﴾

And for the wrongdoers there are no helpers.

meaning, who will save them from Allah's anger and torment on the Day of Resurrection.

The Virtue of Disclosing or Concealing Charity

Allah said,

إِن تُبْدُواْ الصَّدَقَاتِ فَنِعِمَّا هِيَ ...

If you disclose your Sadaqat, it is well),

meaning, "It is well if you make known the charity that you give away.'' Allah's statement,

... وَإِن تُخْفُوهَا وَتُؤْتُوهَا الْفُقَرَاء فَهُوَ خَيْرٌ لُّكُمْ ...

But if you conceal them and give them to the poor, that is better for you.

this indicates that concealing charity is better than disclosing it, because it protects one from showing off and boasting. However, if there is an apparent wisdom behind disclosing the charity, such as the people imitating this righteous act, then disclosing it becomes better than concealing it.

The Messenger of Allah said,

الْجَاهِرُ بِالْقُرْآنِ كَالْجَاهِرِ بِالصَّدَقَةِ، وَالْمُسِرُّ بِالْقُرآنِ كَالْمُسِرِّ بِالصَّدَقَة

He who utters aloud Quranic recitation is just like he who discloses charity acts. He who conceals Quranic recitation is just like he who conceals charity acts.

The Ayah indicates that it is better that acts of charity be concealed, as reiterated by the Hadith that the Two Sahihs recorded from Abu Hurayrah that the Messenger of Allah said,

سَبْعَةٌ يُظِلُّهُمُ اللهُ فِي ظِلِّهِ يَوْمَ لَا ظِلَّ إلَّا ظِلُّهُ:

ˇ إِمَامٌ عَادِلٌ،

ˇ وَشَابٌّ نَشَأَ فِي عِبَادَةِ اللهِ،

ˇ وَرَجُلَانِ تَحَابَّا فِي اللهِ،اجْتَمَعَا عَلَيْهِ وَتَفَرَّقَا عَلَيْهِ،

ˇ وَرَجُلٌ قَلْبُهُ مُعَلَّقٌ بِالْمَسْجِدِ، إِذَا خَرَجَ مِنْهُ حَتَّى يَرْجِعَ إِلَيْهِ،

ˇ وَرَجُلٌ ذَكَرَ اللهَ خَالِيًا فَفَاضَتْ عَيْنَاهُ،

ˇ وَرَجُلٌ دَعَتْهُ امْرَأَةٌ ذَاتُ مَنْصِبٍ وَجَمَالٍ، فَقَالَ: إِنِّي أَخَافُ اللهَ رَبَّ الْعَالَمِينَ،

ˇ وَرَجُلٌ تَصَدَّقَ بِصَدَقَةٍ فَأَخْفَاهَا، حَتَّى لَا تَعْلَمَ شِمَالُهُ مَا تُنْفِقُ يَمِينُه

Allah will give shade to seven on the Day when there will be no shade but His. They are:

ˇ a just ruler,

ˇ a youth who has been brought up in the worship of Allah,

ˇ two persons who love each other only for Allah's sake who meet and part in Allah's cause only,

ˇ a man whose heart is attached to the Masjids from the time he departs the Masjid until he returns to it,

ˇ a person who remembers Allah in seclusion and his eyes are then flooded with tears,

ˇ a man who refuses the call of a charming woman of noble birth for illicit intercourse with her and says, `I fear Allah, Lord of the worlds', and

ˇ a man who gives charitable gifts so secretly that his left hand does not know what his right hand has given.

Allah's statement,

... وَيُكَفِّرُ عَنكُم مِّن سَيِّئَاتِكُمْ ...

(Allah) will expiate you some of your sins,

means, in return for giving away charity, especially if it was concealed. Therefore, you will gain goodness by your rank being raised, and your sins being forgiven.

Allah's statement,

... وَاللّهُ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ خَبِيرٌ ﴿٢٧١﴾

And Allah is Well-Acquainted with what you do.

means, "No good deed that you perform escapes His knowledge, and He shall reward for it.''

272

لَّيْسَ عَلَيْكَ هُدَاهُمْ وَلَـكِنَّ اللَّهَ يَهْدِى مَن يَشَآءُ

Not upon you (Muhammad) is their guidance, but Allah guides whom He wills.

وَمَا تُنفِقُواْ مِنْ خَيْرٍ فَلاًّنفُسِكُمْ وَمَا تُنفِقُونَ إِلاَّ ابْتِغَآءَ وَجْهِ اللَّهِ

And whatever you spend in good, it is for yourselves, when you spend not except seeking Allah's Face.

وَمَا تُنفِقُواْ مِنْ خَيْرٍ يُوَفَّ إِلَيْكُمْ وَأَنتُمْ لاَ تُظْلَمُونَ

And whatever you spend in good, it will be repaid to you in full, and you shall not be wronged.

273

لِلْفُقَرَآءِ الَّذِينَ أُحصِرُواْ فِى سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ لاَ يَسْتَطِيعُونَ ضَرْبًا فِى الاٌّرْضِ

(Charity is) for Fuqara' (the poor), who in Allah's cause are restricted (from travel), and cannot move about in the land (for trade or work).

يَحْسَبُهُمُ الْجَاهِلُ أَغْنِيَآءَ مِنَ التَّعَفُّفِ تَعْرِفُهُم بِسِيمَـهُمْ لاَ يَسْـَلُونَ النَّاسَ إِلْحَافًا

The one who knows them not, thinks that they are rich because of their modesty. You may know them by their mark, they do not beg of people at all.

وَمَا تُنفِقُواْ مِنْ خَيْرٍ فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ بِهِ عَلِيمٌ

And whatever you spend in good, surely Allah knows it well.

274

الَّذِينَ يُنفِقُونَ أَمْوَلَهُمْ بِالَّيْلِ وَالنَّهَارِ سِرًّا وَعَلاَنِيَةً فَلَهُمْ أَجْرُهُم عِندَ رَبِّهِمْ وَلاَ خَوْفٌ عَلَيْهِمْ وَلاَ هُمْ يَحْزَنُونَ

Those who spend their wealth (in Allah's cause) by night and day, in secret and in public, they shall have their reward with their Lord. On them shall be no fear, nor shall they grieve.

Giving Charity to Polytheists

Allah says;

لَّيْسَ عَلَيْكَ هُدَاهُمْ وَلَـكِنَّ اللّهَ يَهْدِي مَن يَشَاء وَمَا تُنفِقُواْ مِنْ خَيْرٍ فَلأنفُسِكُمْ وَمَا تُنفِقُونَ إِلاَّ ابْتِغَاء وَجْهِ اللّهِ وَمَا تُنفِقُواْ مِنْ خَيْرٍ يُوَفَّ إِلَيْكُمْ وَأَنتُمْ لاَ تُظْلَمُونَ ﴿٢٧٢﴾

Not upon you (Muhammad) is their guidance, but Allah guides whom He wills. And whatever you spend in good, it is for yourselves, when you spend not except seeking Allah's Face. And whatever you spend in good, it will be repaid to you in full, and you shall not be wronged.

Abu Abdur-Rahman An-Nasa'i recorded that Ibn Abbas said that; they, "Disliked giving charity to their polytheist relatives, but were later on allowed to give it to them when they inquired about this matter, and this Ayah was revealed."

Allah's statement,

... وَمَا تُنفِقُواْ مِنْ خَيْرٍ فَلأنفُسِكُمْ ...

And whatever you spend in good, it is for yourselves,

is similar to His other statement,

مَّنْ عَمِلَ صَـلِحاً فَلِنَفْسِهِ

Whosoever does righteous good deed, it is for (the benefit of) his ownself.

There are many other similar Ayat in the Qur'an.

Allah said next,

وَمَا تُنفِقُونَ إِلاَّ ابْتِغَاء وَجْهِ اللّهِ ...

When you spend not except seeking Allah's Face.

Al-Hasan Al-Basri commented, "Whenever the believer spends, including what he spends on himself, he seeks Allah's Face with it.''

Ata Al-Khurasani said that the Ayah means, "You give away charity for the sake of Allah. Therefore, you will not be asked about the deeds (or wickedness) of those who receive it.''

This is a sound meaning indicating that when one spends in charity for Allah's sake, then his reward will be with Allah. He will not be asked if the charity unintentionally reached righteous, evil, deserving or undeserving persons, for he will be rewarded for his good intention. The proof to this statement is the Ayah,

... وَمَا تُنفِقُواْ مِنْ خَيْرٍ يُوَفَّ إِلَيْكُمْ وَأَنتُمْ لاَ تُظْلَمُونَ

And whatever you spend in good, it will be repaid to you in full, and you shall not be wronged.

The Two Sahihs recorded a Hadith by Abu Hurayrah that the Messenger of Allah said,

قَالَ رَجُلٌ: لَأَتَصَدَّقَنَّ اللَّيْلَةَ بِصَدَقَةٍ، فَخَرجَ بِصَدَقَتِهِ فَوَضَعَهَا فِي يَدِ زَانِيَةٍ، فَأَصْبَحَ النَّاسُ يَتَحَدَّثُونَ: تُصُدِّقَ عَلَى زَانِيَةٍ، فَقَالَ: اللَّهُمَ لَكَ الْحَمْدُ عَلَى زَانِيَةٍ، لَأَتَصَدَّقَنَّ اللَّيْلَةَ بِصَدَقَةٍ،

A man said, "Tonight, I shall give charity.'' He went out with his charity and (unknowingly) gave it to an adulteress. The next morning the people said that alms were given to an adulteress. The man said, "O Allah! All the praises are for You. (I gave my alms) to an adulteress. Tonight, I shall give alms again.''

فَخَرَجَ بِصَدَقَتِهِ فَوَضَعَهَا فِي يَدِ غَنِيَ، فَأَصْبَحُوا يَتَحَدَّثُونَ: تُصُدِّقَ اللَّيْلَةَ عَلَى غَنِيَ، قَالَ: اللَّهُمَّ لَكَ الْحَمْدُ عَلَى غَنِيَ، لَأَتَصَدَّقَنَّ اللَّيْلَةَ بِصَدَقَةٍ،

He went out with his charity and (unknowingly) gave it to a rich person. The next morning (the people) said, "Last night, a wealthy person was given alms.'' He said, "O Allah! All the praises are for You. (I gave alms) to a wealthy man. Tonight, I shall again give charity.''

فَخَرَجَ بِصَدَقَتِهِ فَوَضَعَهَا فِي يَدِ سَارِقٍ، فَأَصْبَحُوا يَتَحَدَّثُونَ: تُصُدِّقَ اللَّيْلَةَ عَلَى سَارِقٍ، فَقَالَ:اللَّهُمَّ لَكَ الْحَمْدُ عَلَى زَانِيَةٍ، وَعَلَى غَنِيَ، وَعَلَى سَارِقٍ.

So he went out with his charity and (unknowingly) gave it to a thief. The next morning (the people) said, "Last night, a thief was given alms.'' He said, "O Allah! All the praises are for You. (I have given alms) to an adulteress, a wealthy man and a thief.''

فَأُتِيَ فَقِيلَ لَهُ: أَمَّا صَدَقَتُكَ فَقَدْ قُبِلَتْ، وَأَمَّا الزَّانِيَةُ فَلَعَلَّهَا أَنْ تَسْتَعِفَّ بِهَا عَنْ زِنَاهَا، وَلَعَلَّ الْغَنِيَّ يَعْتَبِرُ فَيُنْفِقُ مِمَّا أَعْطَاهُ اللهُ، وَلَعَلَّ السَّارِقَ أَنْ يَسْتَعِفَّ بِهَا عَنْ سَرِقَتِه

Then, someone came to him and said, "The alms that you gave away were accepted. As for the adulteress, the alms might make her abstain from adultery. As for the wealthy man, it might make him take a lesson and spend his wealth that Allah has given him. As for the thief, it might make him abstain from stealing.''

Who Deserves Charity

Allah said,

لِلْفُقَرَاء الَّذِينَ أُحصِرُواْ فِي سَبِيلِ اللّهِ ...  

(Charity is) for the poor, who in Allah's cause are restricted (from travel),

meaning, the migrants who migrated to Allah and His Messenger, resided in Al-Madinah and did not have resources that sufficiently provided them with their needs.

... لاَ يَسْتَطِيعُونَ ضَرْبًا فِي الأَرْضِ ...

And cannot Darban (move about) in the land,

meaning, "They cannot travel in the land to seek means of livelihood.''

Allah said in other instances (using a variation of the word Darban),

وَإِذَا ضَرَبْتُمْ فِى الاٌّرْضِ فَلَيْسَ عَلَيْكُمْ جُنَاحٌ أَن تَقْصُرُواْ مِنَ الصَّلوةِ

And when you (Muslims) travel in the land, there is no sin on you if you shorten the Salah (the prayer). (4:101)

and,

أَن سَيَكُونُ مِنكُمْ مَّرْضَى وَءَاخَرُونَ يَضْرِبُونَ فِى الاٌّرْضِ يَبْتَغُونَ مِن فَضْلِ اللَّهِ وَءَاخَرُونَ يُقَـتِلُونَ فِى سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ فَاقْرَءُواْ

He knows that there will be some among you sick, others traveling through the land, seeking of Allah's bounty, yet others fighting in Allah's cause. (73:20)

Allah then said,

... يَحْسَبُهُمُ الْجَاهِلُ أَغْنِيَاء مِنَ التَّعَفُّفِ ...

The one who knows them not, thinks that they are rich because of their modesty,

meaning, those who do not know their situation think that they are well-off, because they are modest in their clothes and speech.

There is a Hadith with this meaning that the Two Sahihs recorded from Abu Hurayrah that the Messenger of Allah said,

لَيْسَ الْمِسْكِينُ بِهذَا الطَّوَّافِ الَّذِي تَرُدُّهُ التَّمْرَةُ وَالتَّمْرَتَانِ، وَاللُّقْمَةُ وَاللُّقْمَتَانِ، وَالْأُكْلَةُ وَالْأُكْلَتَانِ، وَلكِنِ الْمِسْكِينُ الَّذِي لَا يَجِدُ غِنىً يُغْنِيهِ، وَلَا يُفْطَنُ لَهُ فَيُتَصَدَّقَ عَلَيْهِ، وَلَا يَسْأَلُ النَّاسَ شَيْئًا

The Miskin (needy) is not he who wanders about and whose need is sufficed by a date or two, a bite or two or a meal or two. Rather, the Miskin is he who neither has enough resources to sustain him, all the while people are unaware of his need so they do not give to him, nor does he ask people for anything.

Imam Ahmad also recorded this Hadith from Ibn Mas`ud.

Allah's statement,

... تَعْرِفُهُم بِسِيمَاهُمْ ...

You may know them by their mark,

means, "Those who have good minds discover their situation,''

just as Allah said in other instances,

سِيمَـهُمْ فِى وُجُوهِهِمْ

The mark of them (i.e. of their faith) is on their faces. (48:29)

وَلَتَعْرِفَنَّهُمْ فِى لَحْنِ الْقَوْلِ

But surely, you will know them by the tone of their speech! (47:30)

Allah's statement,

... لاَ يَسْأَلُونَ النَّاسَ إِلْحَافًا ...

they do not beg of people at all,

means, they do not beg and, thus, do not require people to provide them with more than what they actually need.

Indeed, those who ask people for help, while having what suffices for their needs, have begged.

Imam Ahmad recorded that Abu Sa`id said,

"My mother sent me to the Messenger of Allah to ask him for help, but when I came by him I sat down. The Prophet faced me and said to me,

ˇ مَنِ اسْتَغْنَى أَغْنَاهُ اللهُ،

ˇ وَمَنِ اسْتَعَفَّ أَعَفَّهُ اللهُ،

ˇ وَمَنِ اسْتَكَفَّ كَفَاهُ اللهُ،

ˇ وَمَنْ سَأَلَ وَلَهُ قِيمَةُ أُوقِيَّةٍ فَقَدْ أَلْحَف

ˇ Whoever felt satisfied, then Allah will enrich him.

ˇ Whoever is modest, Allah will make him decent.

ˇ Whoever is content, then Allah will suffice for him.

ˇ Whoever asks people, while having a small amount, he will have begged the people.

Abu Sa`id said,

"I said to myself, `I have a camel, Al-Yaqutah, and indeed, it is worth more than a small amount.' And I went back without asking the Prophet for anything.''

This is the same wording for this Hadith collected by Abu Dawud and An-Nasa'i.

Allah's statement,

... وَمَا تُنفِقُواْ مِنْ خَيْرٍ فَإِنَّ اللّهَ بِهِ عَلِيمٌ ﴿٢٧٣﴾

And whatever you spend in good, surely Allah knows it well.

indicates that no charity escapes Him, and He will reward it fully and perfectly on the Day of Resurrection, when it is most desperately needed.

Praise for those who Spend in Charity

Allah said,

الَّذِينَ يُنفِقُونَ أَمْوَالَهُم بِاللَّيْلِ وَالنَّهَارِ سِرًّا وَعَلاَنِيَةً فَلَهُمْ أَجْرُهُمْ عِندَ رَبِّهِمْ وَلاَ خَوْفٌ عَلَيْهِمْ وَلاَ هُمْ يَحْزَنُونَ ﴿٢٧٤﴾   

Those who spend their wealth (in Allah's cause) by night and day, in secret and in public, they shall have their reward with their Lord. On them shall be no fear, nor shall they grieve.

This Ayah praises those who spend in charity for Allah's sake, seeking His pleasure, day and night, publicly and in secret, including what one spends on his family.

The Two Sahihs recorded that the Messenger of Allah said to Sa`d bin Abi Waqqas:

وَإِنَّكَ لَنْ تُنْفِقَ نَفَقَةً تَبْتَغِي بِهَا وَجْهَ اللهِ إِلَّا ازْدَدْتَ بِهَا دَرَجَةً وَرِفْعَةً، حَتَّى مَا تَجْعَلُ فِي فِي امْرَأَتِك

You will not spend charity with which you seek Allah's Face, but you will ascend a higher degree and status because of it, including what you put in your wife's mouth.

Imam Ahmad recorded that Abu Mas`ud said that the Prophet said,

إِنَّ الْمُسْلِمَ إِذَا أَنْفَقَ عَلَى أَهْلِهِ نَفَقَةً يَحْتَسِبُهَا، كَانَتْ لَهُ صَدَقَة

When the Muslim spends on his family while awaiting the reward for it from Allah, it will be written as charity for him.

Al-Bukhari and Muslim also recorded this Hadith.

Allah said,

... فَلَهُمْ أَجْرُهُمْ عِندَ رَبِّهِمْ ...

shall have their reward with their Lord,

on the Day of Resurrection, as reward for what they spent in acts of obedience.

We previously explained the Ayah,

... وَلاَ خَوْفٌ عَلَيْهِمْ وَلاَ هُمْ يَحْزَنُونَ

there shall be no fear on them nor shall they grieve.

275

الَّذِينَ يَأْكُلُونَ الرِّبَواْ لاَ يَقُومُونَ إِلاَّ كَمَا يَقُومُ الَّذِى يَتَخَبَّطُهُ الشَّيْطَـنُ مِنَ الْمَسِّ

Those who eat Riba will not stand (on the Day of Resurrection) except like the standing of a person beaten by Shaytan leading him to insanity.

ذَلِكَ بِأَنَّهُمْ قَالُواْ إِنَّمَا الْبَيْعُ مِثْلُ الرِّبَواْ وَأَحَلَّ اللَّهُ الْبَيْعَ وَحَرَّمَ الرِّبَواْ

That is because they say: "Trading is only like Riba,'' whereas Allah has permitted trading and forbidden Riba.

فَمَن جَآءَهُ مَوْعِظَةٌ مِّنْ رَّبِّهِ فَانتَهَى فَلَهُ مَا سَلَفَ وَأَمْرُهُ إِلَى اللَّهِ وَمَنْ عَادَ فَأُوْلَـئِكَ أَصْحَـبُ النَّارِ هُمْ فِيهَا خَـلِدُونَ

So whosoever receives an admonition from his Lord and stops eating Riba, shall not be punished for the past; his case is for Allah (to judge); but whoever returns (to Riba), such are the dwellers of the Fire ـ they will Abide therein.

The Punishment for Dealing with Riba (Interest and Usury)

After Allah mentioned the righteous believers who give charity, pay Zakah and spend on their relatives and families at various times and conditions, He then mentioned those who deal in usury and illegally acquire people's money, using various evil methods and wicked ways.

Allah describes the condition of these people when they are resurrected from their graves and brought back to life on the Day of Resurrection:

الَّذِينَ يَأْكُلُونَ الرِّبَا لاَ يَقُومُونَ إِلاَّ كَمَا يَقُومُ الَّذِي يَتَخَبَّطُهُ الشَّيْطَانُ مِنَ الْمَسِّ ...  

Those who eat Riba will not stand (on the Day of Resurrection) except like the standing of a person beaten by Shaytan leading him to insanity.

This Ayah means, on the Day of Resurrection, these people will get up from their graves just as the person afflicted by insanity or possessed by a demon would.

Ibn Abbas said, "On the Day of Resurrection, those who consume Riba will be resurrected while insane and suffering from seizures.''

Ibn Abi Hatim also recorded this and then commented,

"This Tafsir was reported from Awf bin Malik, Sa`id bin Jubayr, As-Suddi, Ar-Rabi bin Anas, Qatadah and Muqatil bin Hayyan.''

Al-Bukhari recorded that Samurah bin Jundub said in the long Hadith about the dream that the Prophet had,

فَأَتْينَا عَلَى نَهْرٍ حَسِبْتُ أَنَّهُ كَانَ يَقُولُ: أَحْمَرَ مِثْلَ الدَّمِ، وَإِذَا فِي النَّهْرِ رَجُلٌ سَابِحٌ يَسْبَحُ، وَإِذَا عَلَى شَطِّ النَّهْرِ رَجُلٌ قَدْ جَمَعَ عِنْدَهُ حِجَارَةً كَثِيرَةً،وَإِذَا ذَلِكَ السَّابِحُ يَسْبَحُ مَا يَسْبَحُ، ثُمَّ يَأْتِي ذَلِكَ الَّذِي قَدْ جَمَعَ الْحِجَارَةَ عِنْدَهُ، فَيَفْغَرُ لَهُ فَاهُ فَيُلْقِمُهُ حَجَرًا

We reached a river -

the narrator said, "I thought he said that the river was as red as blood''-

and found that a man was swimming in the river, and on its bank there was another man standing with a large collection of stones next to him. The man in the river would swim, then come to the man who had collected the stones and open his mouth, and the other man would throw a stone in his mouth.

The explanation of this dream was that the person in the river was one who consumed Riba.

Allah's statement,

... ذَلِكَ بِأَنَّهُمْ قَالُواْ إِنَّمَا الْبَيْعُ مِثْلُ الرِّبَا وَأَحَلَّ اللّهُ الْبَيْعَ وَحَرَّمَ الرِّبَا ...

That is because they say: "Trading is only like Riba,'' whereas Allah has permitted trading and forbidden Riba,

indicates that the disbelievers claimed that Riba was allowed due to the fact that they rejected Allah's commandments, not that they equated Riba with regular trade.

The disbelievers did not recognize that Allah allowed trade in the Qur'an, for if they did, they would have said, "Riba is trade.'' Rather, they said,  إِنَّمَا الْبَيْعُ مِثْلُ الرِّبَا  (Trading is only like Riba) meaning, they are similar, so why did Allah allow this, but did not allow that, they asked in defiance of Allah's commandments.

Allah's statement,

... وَأَحَلَّ اللّهُ الْبَيْعَ وَحَرَّمَ الرِّبَا ...

Whereas Allah has permitted trading and forbidden Riba,

might be a continuation of the answer to the disbelievers' claim, who uttered it, although they knew that Allah decided that ruling on trade is different from that of Riba.

Indeed, Allah is the Most Knowledgeable, Most Wise, Whose decision is never resisted. Allah is never asked about what He does, while they will be asked. He is knowledgeable of the true reality of all things and the benefits they carry. He knows what benefits His servants, so He allows it for them, and what harms them, so He forbids them from it. He is more merciful with them than the mother with her own infant.

Thereafter, Allah said,

... فَمَن جَاءهُ مَوْعِظَةٌ مِّن رَّبِّهِ فَانتَهَىَ فَلَهُ مَا سَلَفَ وَأَمْرُهُ إِلَى اللّهِ ...

So whosoever receives an admonition from his Lord and stops eating Riba, shall not be punished for the past; his case is for Allah (to judge),

meaning, those who have knowledge that Allah made usury unlawful, and refrain from indulging in it as soon as they acquire this knowledge, then Allah will forgive their previous dealings in Riba, عَفَا اللّهُ عَمَّا سَلَف  (Allah has forgiven what is past). (5:95)

On the day Makkah was conquered the Prophet said,

وَكُلُّ رِبًا فِي الْجَاهِلِيَّةِ مَوْضُوعٌ تَحْتَ قَدَمَيَ هَاتَيْنِ، وَأَوَّلُ رِبًا أَضَعُ، رِبَا الْعَبَّاس

All cases of Riba during the time of Jahiliyyah (pre-Islamic period of ignorance) is annulled and under my feet, and the first Riba I annul is the Riba of Al-Abbas (the Prophet's uncle).

We should mention that;

the Prophet did not require the return of the interest that they gained on their Riba during the time of Jahiliyyah. Rather, he pardoned the cases of Riba that occurred in the past, just as Allah said, فَلَهُ مَا سَلَفَ وَأَمْرُهُ إِلَى اللّهِ  (shall not be punished for the past; his case is for Allah (to judge).

Sa`id bin Jubayr and As-Suddi said that, فَلَهُ مَا سَلَفَ  (shall not be punished for the past), refers to the Riba one consumed before it was prohibited.

Allah then said,

... وَمَنْ عَادَ ...

But whoever returns,

meaning, deals in Riba after gaining knowledge that Allah prohibited it, then that warrants punishment, and in this case, the proof will have been established against such person.

This is why Allah said,

... فَأُوْلَـئِكَ أَصْحَابُ النَّارِ هُمْ فِيهَا خَالِدُونَ ﴿٢٧٥﴾

such are the dwellers of the Fire ـ they will abide therein forever.

Abu Dawud recorded that Jabir said,

"When الَّذِينَ يَأْكُلُونَ الرِّبَا لاَ يَقُومُونَ إِلاَّ كَمَا يَقُومُ الَّذِي يَتَخَبَّطُهُ الشَّيْطَانُ مِنَ الْمَسِّ    (Those who eat Riba will not stand (on the Day of Resurrection) except like a person beaten by Shaytan leading him to insanity) was revealed, the Messenger of Allah said,

مَنْ لَمْ يَذَرِ الْمُخَابَرَةَ فَلْيُؤْذِنْ بِحَرْبٍ مِنَ اللهِ وَرَسُولِه

Whoever does not refrain from Mukhabarah, then let him receive a notice of war from Allah and His Messenger.''

Al-Hakim also recorded this in his Mustadrak, and he said, "It is Sahih according to the criteria of Muslim, and he did not record it.''

Mukhabarah (sharecropping), farming land in return for some of its produce, was prohibited.

Muzabanah, trading fresh dates still on trees with dried dates already on the ground, was prohibited.

Muhaqalah, which refers to trading produce not yet harvested, with crops already harvested, was also prohibited.

These were prohibited to eradicate the possibility that Riba might be involved, for the quality and equity of such items are only known after they become dry.

The subject of Riba is a difficult subject for many scholars. We should mention that the Leader of the Faithful, Umar bin Al-Khattab, said,

"I wished that the Messenger of Allah had made three matters clearer for us, so that we could refer to his decision:

ˇ the grandfather (regarding inheriting from his grandchildren),

ˇ the Kalalah (those who leave neither descendants nor ascendants as heirs) and

ˇ some types of Riba.''

Umar was referring to the types of transactions where it is not clear whether they involve Riba or not.

The Shariah supports the rule that;

ˇ for any matter that is unlawful, then the means to it are also unlawful, because whatever results in the unlawful is unlawful, in the same way that whenever an obligation will not be complete except with something, then that something is itself an obligation.

The Two Sahihs recorded that An-Nu`man bin Bashir said that he heard the Messenger of Allah say,

إِنَّ الْحَلَالَ بَيِّنٌ وَإِنَّ الْحَرَامَ بَيِّنٌ، وَبَيْنَ ذَلِكَ أُمُورٌ مُشْتَبِهَاتٌ، فَمَنِ اتَّقَى الشُّبُهَاتِ اسْتَبْرَأَ لِدِينِهِ وَعِرْضِهِ، وَمَنْ وَقَعَ فِي الشُّبُهَاتِ وَقَعَ فِي الْحَرَامِ، كَالرَّاعِي يَرْعَى حَولَ الْحِمَى يُوشِكُ أَنْ يَرْتَعَ فِيه

Both lawful and unlawful things are evident, but in between them there are matters that are not clear. So whoever saves himself from these unclear matters, he saves his religion and his honor. And whoever indulges in these unclear matters, he will have fallen into the prohibitions, just like a shepherd who grazes (his animals) near a private pasture, at any moment he is liable to enter it.

The Sunan records that Al-Hasan bin Ali said that he heard the Messenger of Allah say,

دَعْ مَا يَرِيبُكَ إِلَى مَا لَا يَرِيبُك

Leave that which makes you doubt for that which does not make you doubt.

Ahmad recorded that Sa`id bin Al-Musayyib said that Umar said,

"The Ayah about Riba was one of the last Ayat to be revealed, and the Messenger of Allah died before he explained it to us. So leave that which makes you doubt for that which does not make you doubt.''

Ibn Majah recorded that Abu Hurayrah said that the Messenger of Allah said,

الرِّبَا سَبْعُونَ حُوبًا، أَيْسَرُهَا أَنْ يَنْكِحَ الرَّجُلُ أُمَّه

Riba is seventy types, the least of which is equal to one having sexual intercourse with his mother.

Continuing on the subject of prohibiting the means that lead to the unlawful, there is a Hadith that Ahmad recorded in which Aishah said,

"When the Ayat in Surah Al-Baqarah about Riba were revealed, the Messenger of Allah went out to the Masjid and recited them and also prohibited trading in alcohol.''

The Six collections recorded this Hadith, with the exception of At-Tirmidhi.

The Two Sahihs recorded that the Messenger of Allah said,

لَعَنَ اللهُ الْيَهُودَ، حُرِّمَتْ عَلَيْهِمُ الشُّحُومُ فَجَمَلُوهَا فَبَاعُوهَا، وَأَكَلُوا أَثْمَانَهَا

May Allah curse the Jews! Allah forbade them to eat animal fat, but they melted it and sold it, eating its price.

Ali and Ibn Mas`ud narrated that the Messenger of Allah said,

لَعَنَ اللهُ آكِلَ الرِّبَا وَمُوكِلَهُ وَشَاهِدَيْهِ وَكَاتِبَه

May Allah curse whoever consumes Riba, whoever pays Riba, the two who are witnesses to it, and the scribe who records it.

They say they only have witnesses and a scribe to write the Riba contract when they want it to appear to be a legitimate agreement, but it is still invalid because the ruling is applied to the agreement itself, not the form that it appears in. Verily, deeds are judged by their intentions.

276

يَمْحَقُ اللَّهُ الْرِّبَواْ وَيُرْبِى الصَّدَقَـتِ

Allah will destroy Riba and will give increase for Sadaqat.

وَاللَّهُ لاَ يُحِبُّ كُلَّ كَفَّارٍ أَثِيمٍ

And Allah likes not the disbelievers, sinners.

277

إِنَّ الَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ وَعَمِلُواْ الصَّـلِحَـتِ وَأَقَامُواْ الصَّلَوةَ وَآتَوُاْ الزَّكَوةَ لَهُمْ أَجْرُهُمْ عِندَ رَبِّهِمْ وَلاَ خَوْفٌ عَلَيْهِمْ وَلاَ هُمْ يَحْزَنُونَ

Truly, those who believe, and do deeds of righteousness, and perform the Salah and give Zakah, they will have their reward with their Lord. On them shall be no fear, nor shall they grieve.

 Allah Does Not Bless Riba

Allah says;

يَمْحَقُ اللّهُ الْرِّبَا وَيُرْبِي الصَّدَقَاتِ ...  

Allah will destroy Riba and will give increase for Sadaqat.

Allah states that He destroys Riba, either by removing this money from those who eat it, or by depriving them of the blessing, and thus the benefit of their money.

Because of their Riba, Allah will torment them in this life and punish them for it on the Day of Resurrection.

Allah said,

قُل لاَّ يَسْتَوِى الْخَبِيثُ وَالطَّيِّبُ وَلَوْ أَعْجَبَكَ كَثْرَةُ الْخَبِيثِ

Say: "Not equal are Al-Khabith (evil things) and At-Tayyib (good things), even though the abundance of Al-Khabith may please you.'' (5:100)

وَيَجْعَلَ الْخَبِيثَ بَعْضَهُ عَلَى بَعْضٍ فَيَرْكُمَهُ جَمِيعاً فَيَجْعَلَهُ فِى جَهَنَّمَ

And put the wicked (disbelievers and doers of evil deeds) one over another, heap them together and cast them into Hell. (8:37)

وَمَآ ءَاتَيْتُمْ مِّن رِّباً لِّيَرْبُوَاْ فِى أَمْوَالِ النَّاسِ فَلاَ يَرْبُواْ عِندَ اللَّهِ

And that which you give in gift (to others), in order that it may increase (your wealth by expecting to get a better one in return) from other people's property, has no increase with Allah. (30:39)

Ibn Jarir said that Allah's statement, يَمْحَقُ اللّهُ الْرِّبَا  (Allah will destroy Riba), is similar to the statement reported of Abdullah bin Mas`ud,

"Riba will end up with less, even if it was substantial.''

Imam Ahmad recorded a similar statement in Al-Musnad.

Allah Increases Charity, Just as One Raises His Animal

Allah's statement,

... وَيُرْبِي الصَّدَقَاتِ ...

And will give increase for Sadaqat,

means, Allah makes charity grow, or He increases it.

Al-Bukhari recorded that Abu Hurayrah said that the Messenger of Allah said,

مَنْ تَصَدَّقَ بِعَدْلِ تَمْرَةٍ مِنْ كَسْبٍ طَيِّبٍ، وَلَا يَقْبَلُ اللهُ إِلَّا الطَّيِّبَ، فَإِنَّ اللهَ يَتَقَبَّلُهَا بِيَمِينِهِ، ثُمَّ يُرَبِّيهَا لِصَاحِبِهِ، كَمَا يُرَبِّي أَحَدُكُمْ فَلُوَّهُ حَتَّى تَكُونَ مِثْلَ الْجَبَل

Whoever gives in charity what equals a date from honest resources, and Allah only accepts that which is good and pure, then Allah accepts it with His right (Hand) and raises it for its giver, just as one of you raises his animal, until it becomes as big as a mountain.

This was recorded in the book of Zakah.

 Allah Does not Like the Disbelieving Sinners

Allah's statement,

... وَاللّهُ لاَ يُحِبُّ كُلَّ كَفَّارٍ أَثِيمٍ ﴿٢٧٦﴾

And Allah likes not the disbelievers, sinners.

indicates that Allah does not like he who has a disbelieving heart, who is a sinner in tongue and action.

There is a connection between the beginning of the Ayah on Riba and what Allah ended it with.

Those who consume Riba are not satisfied with the permissible and pure resources that Allah provided them. Instead, they try to illegally acquire people's money by relying on evil methods. This demonstrates their lack of appreciation for the bounty that Allah provides.

Praising Those Who Thank Allah

Allah praised those who believe in His Lordship, obey His commands, thank Him and appreciate Him. They are those who are kind to His creation, establish prayer and give charity due on their money. Allah informed them of the honor that He has prepared for them and that they will be safe from the repercussions of the Day of Resurrection.

Allah said,

إِنَّ الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ وَعَمِلُواْ الصَّالِحَاتِ وَأَقَامُواْ الصَّلاَةَ وَآتَوُاْ الزَّكَاةَ لَهُمْ أَجْرُهُمْ عِندَ رَبِّهِمْ وَلاَ خَوْفٌ عَلَيْهِمْ وَلاَ هُمْ يَحْزَنُونَ ﴿٢٧٧﴾  

Truly, those who believe, and do deeds of righteousness, and perform the Salah and give Zakah, they will have their reward with their Lord. On them shall be no fear, nor shall they grieve.

278

يأَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ اتَّقُواْ اللَّهَ وَذَرُواْ مَا بَقِىَ مِنَ الرِّبَواْ إِن كُنتُمْ مُّؤْمِنِينَ

O you who believe! Have Taqwa of Allah and give up what remains from Riba, if you are (really) believers.

279

فَإِن لَّمْ تَف