Monday 3 February 2020

Surah Al i Imran - The Family of Imran: 3rd Chapter of the Quran (Part IV)

Sürah Al i Imran ( ʾĀl ʿImrān  "آل عِمْرَان " The Family of Imran) is the 3rd sürah with 200 ayahs with twenty rukus, part of the 3rd and 4th Juzʼ  of the Holy Qur'an. The Sürah takes its name from 33rd verse.

This Sürah is cognate to Sürah II Al Baqarah. but the matter is here treated from a different point of view, The references to Badr (Ramadân. H. 2) and Uhud Shawwal. H. 3.) give a clue to the dates of those passages.

Like Sürah II. it takes a general view of the religious history of mankind, special reference to the People of the Book, proceeds to explain the birth 4 he new People of Islam and their ordinances, insists on the need of struggle and fighting in the cause of Truth, and exhorts those who have been blessed with Islam to remain constant in Faith, pray for guidance, and maintain their with hope for the Future.

The new points of view developed are: (1) The emphasis is here laid on the duty of the Christians to accept the new light: the Christians are here specially appealed to, as the Jews were specially appealed to in the last Sürah(2) the lessons of the battles of Badr and Uhud are set out for the Muslim community; and (3) the responsibilities of that community are insisted on both internally and in their relations to those outside.

As already explained in the Overview, the exegesis of the Sürah has been divided into parts owing to the length of the Sürah, which is 200 verses long. The exegesis will be presented in following parts according to the subject matter:
  • Part I: Verses 1 - 32.  
  • Part II: Verses 33 - 63. 
  • Part III: Verses 64 - 101.  
  • Part IV: Verses 102 - 120. 
  • Part V: Verses 121 - 175. 
  • Part VI: Verses 175 - 189. This part also includes the concluding verses of the Sürah  (190-200), which are not directly connected with the verses immediately preceding it but with the theme of the Surah as a whole. 
Let us now read the translation and exegesis / tafseer of Part IV of the Sürah. This part covers Verses 102 - 120. The Muslims have been instructed to learn lessons from the history of the people of the Book and also to guard themselves against their machinations, and to prepare and train themselves to establish virtue and eradicate evil.  

For Arabic Text and recitation in Arabic with English subtitles, please scroll down for the video at the end of the exegesis of this part:

بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمٰنِ الرَّحِيْمِ 
"In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful"

Ruku / Section 11 [Verses 102-109]

Verses 102-103 Live Islam, die as a Muslim, and be not divided among yourselves:

يٰۤـاَيُّهَا الَّذِيۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡا اتَّقُوا اللّٰهَ حَقَّ تُقٰتِهٖ وَلَا تَمُوۡتُنَّ اِلَّا وَاَنۡـتُمۡ مُّسۡلِمُوۡنَ‏
( 102 )   O you who have believed, fear Allah as He should be feared and do not die except as Muslims [in submission to Him].
They should remain steadfast in their obedience and loyalty to God.

Yusuf Ali Explanation:
Fear is of many kinds: (1) the abject fear of the coward; (2) the fear of a child or an inexperienced person in the face of an unknown danger; (3) the fear of a reasonable man who wishes to avoid harm to himself or to people whom he wishes to protect; (4) the reverence which is akin to love, for it fears to do anything which is not pleasing to the object of love. The first is unworthy of man; the second is necessary for one immature; the third is a manly precaution against evil as long as it is unconquered; and the fourth is the seed-bed of righteousness. Those mature in faith cultivate the fourth: at earlier stages, the third or the second may be necessary; they are fear, but not the fear of Allah. The first is a feeling of which anyone should be ashamed.

Our whole being should be permeated with Islam: it is not a mere veneer or outward show. ‏

Professor Ghamidi's Explanation:
This is an explanation of what holding fast to God actually means: it means to fear God the way a person rightly should. Imam Amin Ahsan Islahi writes:

… Fearing God is required to the extent that a person is capable of. The Qur’an itself has explained this in verse 16 of Surah al-Taghabun. However, there is a great difference between fearing God and fearing others. For this reason it was said that one should fear God as one rightly should. Firstly, the obligations a person owes to God are ones which he owes to no other person. Secondly, the limits and bounds set by God and the punishments for violating them have been prescribed for the worldly and next-worldly benefit of people; God does not stand to gain from obeying these limits; it is they who stand to gain. Thirdly, God is watching over everything; so much so, He even knows what is in the hearts of people. Fourthly, no one can save a person from God’s punishment and the Almighty can punish a person both in this world and in the Hereafter and this punishment can be eternal. Unless a person keeps an eye on all these aspects of fearing God, he cannot grasp the real meaning of fearing God let alone fearing Him in a befitting manner. The basic fault of people who out of fear of human beings forsake God and His shari‘ah is that they do not realize the difference between the hostility of people and the wrath of God. (Amin Ahsan Islahi, Tadabbur-i Qur’an, vol. 2, 152)

Fearing God and being diligent in His obedience is a lifelong attitude. One cannot afford a break in it. This struggle begins when a person reaches mental maturity and continues till one’s last breath. So people should be aware that if before the completion of this period a person breaks this process, he may end up losing the labours of his hard work. Imam Amin Ahsan Islahi, while highlighting another aspect of this, writes:

… Hidden in the style of the verse is the fact that this terrain is not very smooth; in fact there are many ups and downs on the way; one will have to encounter many trials and tribulations and face many incursions from the devils and come across many hitches and obstacles from enemies. At times, greed will try to lure people and, at others, fear will try to intimidate them. Those who passed through all these phases while protecting their faith and reached their destination and died in this state are the ones who in reality feared God the way He should have been feared and these are the people who were actually able to hold fast to God. (Amin Ahsan Islahi, Tadabbur-i Qur’an, vol. 2, 154)

وَاعۡتَصِمُوۡا بِحَبۡلِ اللّٰهِ جَمِيۡعًا وَّلَا تَفَرَّقُوۡا​ وَاذۡكُرُوۡا نِعۡمَتَ اللّٰهِ عَلَيۡكُمۡ اِذۡ كُنۡتُمۡ اَعۡدَآءً فَاَ لَّفَ بَيۡنَ قُلُوۡبِكُمۡ فَاَصۡبَحۡتُمۡ بِنِعۡمَتِهٖۤ اِخۡوَانًا ۚ وَكُنۡتُمۡ عَلٰى شَفَا حُفۡرَةٍ مِّنَ النَّارِ فَاَنۡقَذَكُمۡ مِّنۡهَا ​ؕ كَذٰلِكَ يُبَيِّنُ اللّٰهُ لَـكُمۡ اٰيٰتِهٖ لَعَلَّكُمۡ تَهۡتَدُوۡنَ‏ 
( 103 )   And hold firmly to the rope of Allah all together and do not become divided. And remember the favor of Allah upon you - when you were enemies and He brought your hearts together and you became, by His favor, brothers. And you were on the edge of a pit of the Fire, and He saved you from it. Thus does Allah make clear to you His verses that you may be guided.
The expression 'cable of Allah', in this verse, refers to the 'religion of God'. The reason for use of the word 'cable' (habl) is that it both establishes a bond between man and God and joins all believers together. To take a firm hold on this cable means that the believers should attach profound importance to their religion: this should always be the centre of their concerns; they should continually strive to establish it; and the common desire to serve it should make them co-operate with each other.

As soon as Muslims turn their attentions away from the fundamental teachings of their religion and lose sight of establishing its hegemony in life they begin to concern themselves with matters of secondary importance. And, just as they rent the communities of the former Prophets, enticing people away from their true objective in life, so schisms and dissensions are bound to plague their lives. If Muslims do this they are bound to suffer indignity and disgrace both in this world and the Next as happened with the followers of the previous Prophets.

This refers to the state of the Arabs on the eve of the advent of Islam. There were animosities among the tribes which regularly broke out into fighting; every now and then there was much bloodshed. Things had reached a point that the entire Arabian nation seemed to be on the verge of destroying itself. It was due to the blessings of Islam alone that it was saved from being consumed by the fire to which this verse alludes. The people of Madina had embraced Islam some three or four years before these verses were revealed. They had witnessed the blessing of Islam as it unified into one brotherhood the Aws and Khazraj, two tribes which had long been sworn enemies. Moreover, both tribes treated the migrants from Makkah in a spirit of sacrifice and love seldom seen even among members of the same family.

If they had eyes to see they could conclude for themselves whether their salvation lay in adhering firmly to this religion or in abandoning it and reverting to their former state; i.e. decide whether their true well-wishers were God and His Messenger or those Jews, polytheists and hypocrites who strove to plunge them back into their former state.

Professor Ghamidi's Explanation:
This refers to the Qur’an because this is the rope which is stretched from the heavens to the earth between God and His servants. It is this rope which is the means to reach God and it is also our covenant with Him. Consequently, holding firmly the rope of God means nothing but to firmly grasp the Book of God and in no situation leave it. Holding steadfast is qualified by the word جَمِیۡعًا and the prohibition وَلَا تَفَرَّقُوۡا. This means that this requirement is from Muslims in their collective capacity. The Almighty wants that all these people should firmly grasp this rope and not become divided by forsaking it. While being united they should adhere to the Qur’an, read it and reflect on its verses. They should gather counsel from it, turn to it in all their affairs considering it to be a barometer of justice and before its verdicts give no importance to any other thing whatsoever.

This is a reminder of the great favour reaped by the Arabs only because of the Qur’an. Before the revelation of this Book, every tribe was an enemy of the other and they would be engaged in fighting and warfare. There was no unifying thread between them on the basis of religion also. Each tribe had its own deities. Their interests clashed with one another in the fields of politics and economics as well. However, when in the form of the Qur’an, this rope was handed to them, then in the words of Imam Amin Ahsan Islahi it knitted them together and weaved them into a locket of pearls and foes became friends and well-wishers.

The implication is that with this explanation this reminder has been sounded because a slight mistake in this matter can result in grave trials. Thus people should be well aware that if they want to sustain love and unity among them they must hold fast to this Book otherwise they will revert to the age of jahiliyyah they used to be in. It was undeniable that they were standing at the brink of an abyss of fire when the Almighty caught them by their hands and saved them from it. So, now if they forsake this Book, there is a strong chance that they will fall in this abyss and then will not be able to save themselves from its flames.

Verses 104-109 Punishment for those who divide Muslims into sects:

وَلۡتَكُنۡ مِّنۡكُمۡ اُمَّةٌ يَّدۡعُوۡنَ اِلَى الۡخَيۡرِ وَيَاۡمُرُوۡنَ بِالۡمَعۡرُوۡفِ وَيَنۡهَوۡنَ عَنِ الۡمُنۡكَرِ​ؕ وَاُولٰٓـئِكَ هُمُ الۡمُفۡلِحُوۡنَ‏ 
( 104 )   And let there be [arising] from you a nation inviting to [all that is] good, enjoining what is right and forbidding what is wrong, and those will be the successful. 
Professor Ghamidi's Explanation:
This directive is given to the Muslims in their collective capacity: in order to hold steadfast to this directive of the Qur’an, they must depute some people from among themselves to enjoin good and forbid evil. It is in this capacity that glad tidings of success are given. It is evident from this that this directive relates to those in authority. Consequently, in an Islamic state, the pulpit of the Friday prayer and the department of police serve this very purpose. Through the Friday sermon, those in authority call them towards righteousness and urge them to refrain from wrongdoings while the police holds people accountable who perpetrate acts which are considered as crimes as per law.
وَلَا تَكُوۡنُوۡا كَالَّذِيۡنَ تَفَرَّقُوۡا وَاخۡتَلَفُوۡا مِنۡۢ بَعۡدِ مَا جَآءَهُمُ الۡبَيِّنٰتُ​ؕ وَاُولٰٓـئِكَ لَهُمۡ عَذَابٌ عَظِيۡمٌۙ‏ 
( 105 )   And do not be like the ones who became divided and differed after the clear proofs had come to them. And those will have a great punishment.
The reference is to those communities which received clear and straightforward teachings of the true religion but who had abandoned the fundamentals, forming separate sects around trivial and subsidiary questions; they became so engrossed in quarreling over superfluous and insignificant questions that they lost sight of the mission God had entrusted to them, and even lost interest in those fundamentals of belief and righteous conduct which are essential for man's salvation and felicity. 

يَّوۡمَ تَبۡيَضُّ وُجُوۡهٌ وَّتَسۡوَدُّ وُجُوۡهٌ  ؕ فَاَمَّا الَّذِيۡنَ اسۡوَدَّتۡ وُجُوۡهُهُمۡ اَكَفَرۡتُمۡ بَعۡدَ اِيۡمَانِكُمۡ فَذُوۡقُوا الۡعَذَابَ بِمَا كُنۡتُمۡ تَكۡفُرُوۡنَ‏ 
( 106 )   On the Day [some] faces will turn white and [some] faces will turn black. As for those whose faces turn black, [to them it will be said], "Did you disbelieve after your belief? Then taste the punishment for what you used to reject."
Yusuf Ali Explanation:
The "face" (wajh) expresses our Personality, our inmost being. White is the colour of Light; to become white is to be illumined with Light, which stands for felicity, the rays of the glorious light of Allah. Black is the colour of darkness, sin, rebellion, misery; removal from the grace and light of Allah. These are the Signs of heaven and hell. The standard of decision in all questions is the justice of Allah.
 وَاَمَّا الَّذِيۡنَ ابۡيَـضَّتۡ وُجُوۡهُهُمۡ فَفِىۡ رَحۡمَةِ اللّٰهِ ؕ هُمۡ فِيۡهَا خٰلِدُوۡنَ‏ 
( 107 )   But as for those whose faces will turn white, [they will be] within the mercy of Allah. They will abide therein eternally.
تِلۡكَ اٰيٰتُ اللّٰهِ نَـتۡلُوۡهَا عَلَيۡكَ بِالۡحَـقِّ​ؕ وَمَا اللّٰهُ يُرِيۡدُ ظُلۡمًا لِّلۡعٰلَمِيۡنَ‏  
( 108 )   These are the verses of Allah. We recite them to you, [O Muhammad], in truth; and Allah wants no injustice to the worlds.
Since God does not want to subject people to any wrong He illuminates the straight path of their salvation, and forewarns them of the matters for which they will be asked to render an account in the Hereafter. It is clear that if people abandon the path of rectitude they wrong no one but themselves.

وَلِلّٰهِ مَا فِى السَّمٰوٰتِ وَمَا فِى الۡاَرۡضِ​ؕ وَاِلَى اللّٰهِ تُرۡجَعُ الۡاُمُوۡرُ‏ 
( 109 )   To Allah belongs whatever is in the heavens and whatever is on the earth. And to Allah will [all] matters be returned.
Ruku / Section 12 [Verses 110-120]
Verses 110-115 Muslims are the best nation ever evolved to enjoin good and forbid evil and Some righteous People of the Book:

كُنۡتُمۡ خَيۡرَ اُمَّةٍ اُخۡرِجَتۡ لِلنَّاسِ تَاۡمُرُوۡنَ بِالۡمَعۡرُوۡفِ وَتَنۡهَوۡنَ عَنِ الۡمُنۡكَرِ وَتُؤۡمِنُوۡنَ بِاللّٰهِ​ؕ وَلَوۡ اٰمَنَ اَهۡلُ الۡكِتٰبِ لَڪَانَ خَيۡرًا لَّهُمۡ​ؕ مِنۡهُمُ الۡمُؤۡمِنُوۡنَ وَاَكۡثَرُهُمُ الۡفٰسِقُوۡنَ‏  
( 110 )   You are the best nation produced [as an example] for mankind. You enjoin what is right and forbid what is wrong and believe in Allah. If only the People of the Scripture had believed, it would have been better for them. Among them are believers, but most of them are defiantly disobedient.
This is the same declaration that was made earlier (see Surah 2 Al Baqarah: 143). The Arabian Prophet (peace be on him) and his followers are informed that they are being assigned the guidance and leadership of the world, a position the Israelites had been relieved of because they had shown themselves unsuitable. The Muslims were charged with this responsibility because of their competence. They were the best people in terms of character and morals and had developed in theory and in practice the qualities essential for truly righteous leadership, namely the spirit and practical commitment to promoting good and suppressing evil and the acknowledgement of the One True God as their Lord and Master. In view of the task entrusted to them, they had to become conscious of their responsibilities and avoid the mistakes committed by their predecessors.

'People of the Book' refers here to the Children of Israel.

Yusuf Ali Explanation:
The logical conclusion to a Universal Religion is a non-sectarian, non-racial, non-doctrinal, religion, which Islam claims to be. For Islam is just submission to the Will of Allah. This implies (1) Faith, (2) doing right, being an example to others to do right, and having the power to see that the right prevails, (3) eschewing wrong, being an example to others to eschew wrong, and having the power to see that wrong and injustice are defeated. Islam therefore lives, not for itself, but for mankind. The People of the Book, if only they had faith, would be Muslims, for they have been prepared for Islam. Unfortunately there is Unfaith, but it can never harm those who carry the banner of Faith and Right, which must always be victorious.

لَنۡ يَّضُرُّوۡكُمۡ اِلَّاۤ اَذًى​ؕ وَاِنۡ يُّقَاتِلُوۡكُمۡ يُوَلُّوۡكُمُ الۡاَدۡبَارَ ثُمَّ لَا يُنۡصَرُوۡنَ‏ 
( 111 )   They will not harm you except for [some] annoyance. And if they fight you, they will show you their backs; then they will not be aided.
ضُرِبَتۡ عَلَيۡهِمُ الذِّلَّةُ اَيۡنَ مَا ثُقِفُوۡۤا اِلَّا بِحَبۡلٍ مِّنَ اللّٰهِ وَحَبۡلٍ مِّنَ النَّاسِ وَبَآءُوۡ بِغَضَبٍ مِّنَ اللّٰهِ وَضُرِبَتۡ عَلَيۡهِمُ الۡمَسۡكَنَةُ  ؕ ذٰ لِكَ بِاَنَّهُمۡ كَانُوۡا يَكۡفُرُوۡنَ بِاٰيٰتِ اللّٰهِ وَيَقۡتُلُوۡنَ الۡاَنۡۢبِيَآءَ بِغَيۡرِ حَقٍّ​ؕ ذٰ لِكَ بِمَا عَصَوۡا وَّكَانُوۡا يَعۡتَدُوۡنَ 
( 112 )   They have been put under humiliation [by Allah] wherever they are overtaken, except for a covenant from Allah and a rope from the Muslims. And they have drawn upon themselves anger from Allah and have been put under destitution. That is because they disbelieved in the verses of Allah and killed the prophets without right. That is because they disobeyed and [habitually] transgressed.
 If the Jews have ever enjoyed any measure of peace and security anywhere in the world they owe it to the goodwill and benevolence of others rather than to their own power and strength. At times Muslim governments granted them refuge while at others non-Muslim powers extended protection. Similarly, if the Jews ever emerged as a power it was due not to their intrinsic strength but to the strength of others.

Yusuf Ali Explanation:
Dhuribat. I think there is a simile from the pitching of a tent. Ordinarily a man's tent is a place of tranquility and honour for him. The tent of the wicked wherever they are found is ignominy, shame, and humiliation. It is pity from Allah or from men that gives them protection when their pride has a fall. Using the same simile of tent in another way, their home will be destitution and misery.

لَـيۡسُوۡا سَوَآءً ​ؕ مِنۡ اَهۡلِ الۡكِتٰبِ اُمَّةٌ قَآئِمَةٌ يَّتۡلُوۡنَ اٰيٰتِ اللّٰهِ اٰنَآءَ الَّيۡلِ وَ هُمۡ يَسۡجُدُوۡنَ‏ 
( 113 )   They are not [all] the same; among the People of the Scripture is a community standing [in obedience], reciting the verses of Allah during periods of the night and prostrating [in prayer].
Yusuf Ali Explanation:
In Islam we respect sincere faith and true righteousness in accordance with the Qur'An and Sunnah. This verse, according to Commentators, refers to those People of the Book who eventually embraced Islam.

يُؤۡمِنُوۡنَ بِاللّٰهِ وَالۡيَوۡمِ الۡاٰخِرِ وَ يَاۡمُرُوۡنَ بِالۡمَعۡرُوۡفِ وَيَنۡهَوۡنَ عَنِ الۡمُنۡكَرِ وَيُسَارِعُوۡنَ فِىۡ الۡخَيۡرٰتِ ؕ وَاُولٰٓـئِكَ مِنَ الصّٰلِحِيۡنَ 
( 114 )   They believe in Allah and the Last Day, and they enjoin what is right and forbid what is wrong and hasten to good deeds. And those are among the righteous.
وَمَا يَفۡعَلُوۡا مِنۡ خَيۡرٍ فَلَنۡ يُّكۡفَرُوۡهُ ​ؕ وَاللّٰهُ عَلِيۡمٌۢ بِالۡمُتَّقِيۡنَ‏ 
( 115 )   And whatever good they do - never will it be removed from them. And Allah is Knowing of the righteous.
Verses 116-120 Hypocritical charity and Intimate friendship should be only with the believers:

اِنَّ الَّذِيۡنَ كَفَرُوۡا لَنۡ تُغۡنِىَ عَنۡهُمۡ اَمۡوَالُهُمۡ وَلَاۤ اَوۡلَادُهُمۡ مِّنَ اللّٰهِ شَيۡـئًا  ؕ وَاُولٰٓـئِكَ اَصۡحٰبُ النَّارِ​ۚ هُمۡ فِيۡهَا خٰلِدُوۡنَ‏ 
( 116 )   Indeed, those who disbelieve - never will their wealth or their children avail them against Allah at all, and those are the companions of the Fire; they will abide therein eternally.
مَثَلُ مَا يُنۡفِقُوۡنَ فِىۡ هٰذِهِ الۡحَيٰوةِ الدُّنۡيَا كَمَثَلِ رِيۡحٍ فِيۡهَا صِرٌّ اَصَابَتۡ حَرۡثَ قَوۡمٍ ظَلَمُوۡۤا اَنۡفُسَهُمۡ فَاَهۡلَكَتۡهُ ​ؕ وَمَا ظَلَمَهُمُ اللّٰهُ وَلٰـكِنۡ اَنۡفُسَهُمۡ يَظۡلِمُوۡنَ 
( 117 )   The example of what they spend in this worldly life is like that of a wind containing frost which strikes the harvest of a people who have wronged themselves and destroys it. And Allah has not wronged them, but they wrong themselves.
The term 'harvest' in this parable refers to this life which resembles a field of cultivation the harvest of which one will reap in the World to Come. The 'wind' refers to the superficial appearance of righteousness, for the sake of which unbelievers spend their wealth on philanthropic and charitable causes. The expression 'frost' indicates their lack of true faith and their failure to follow the Divine Laws, as a result of which their entire life has gone astray.

By means of this parable God seeks to bring home to them that while wind is useful for the growth of cultivation if that wind turns into frost it destroys it. So it is with man's acts of charity: they can prove helpful to the growth of the harvest one will reap in the Hereafter but are liable to be destructive if mixed with unbelief. God is the Lord and Master of man as well as of all that man owns, and the world in which he lives. If a man either does not recognize the sovereignty of his Lord and unlawfully serves others or disobeys God's Laws then his actions become crimes for which he deserves to be tried; his acts of 'charity' are but the acts of a servant who unlawfully helps himself to his master's treasure and then spends it as he likes.

Yusuf Ali Explanation:
False "spending" may be either in false "charity" or in having a "good time". For the man who resists Allah's purpose, neither of them is any good. The essence of charity is faith and love. Where these are wanting, charity is no charity. Some baser motive is there: ostentation, or even worse, getting a person into the giver's power by a pretence of charity, something that is connected with the life of this grasping, material world. What happens? You expect a good harvest. But "while you think, good easy man, full surely your greatness is a-ripening," there comes a nipping frost, and destroys all your hopes. The frost is some calamity, or the fact that you are found out! Or perhaps it is "High blown pride," as in Shakespeare's Henry VIII. ii. 3. In your despair you may blame blind Fate or you may blame Allah! Blind Fate does not exist, for there is Allah's Providence, which is just and good. The harm or injustice has come, not from Allah, but from your own soul. You wronged your soul, and it suffered the frost. Your base motive brought you no good: it may have reduced you to poverty, shame, and disgrace. All the brave show of the wicked in this life is but a wind charged with evil to themselves.

يٰۤـاَيُّهَا الَّذِيۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡا لَا تَتَّخِذُوۡا بِطَانَةً مِّنۡ دُوۡنِكُمۡ لَا يَاۡلُوۡنَكُمۡ خَبَالًا ؕ وَدُّوۡا مَا عَنِتُّمۡ​ۚ قَدۡ بَدَتِ الۡبَغۡضَآءُ مِنۡ اَفۡوَاهِهِمۡ  ۖۚ وَمَا تُخۡفِىۡ صُدُوۡرُهُمۡ اَكۡبَرُ​ؕ قَدۡ بَيَّنَّا لَـكُمُ الۡاٰيٰتِ​ اِنۡ كُنۡتُمۡ تَعۡقِلُوۡنَ
( 118 )   O you who have believed, do not take as intimates those other than yourselves, for they will not spare you [any] ruin. They wish you would have hardship. Hatred has already appeared from their mouths, and what their breasts conceal is greater. We have certainly made clear to you the signs, if you will use reason.
The Jews living on the outskirts of Madina had long enjoyed friendly relations with the two tribes of Aws and Khazraj. In the first place this was the result of relations between individuals. Later, they were bound by ties of neighbourliness and allegiance as a result of tribal inter-relationship. Even after the people of Aws and Khazraj embraced Islam, they maintained their old ties with the Jews and continued to treat them with the same warmth and cordiality. However, the hostility of the Jews towards the Arabian Prophet (peace be on him) and towards his mission was far too intense to allow them to maintain a cordial relationship with anyone who had joined the new movement. Outwardly, the Jews maintained the same terms of friendship with the Ansar (Helpers) as before but at heart they had become their sworn enemies. They made the best use of this pretended friendship, and remained constantly on the look-out for opportunities to create schisms and dissensions in the Muslim body-politic, and to draw out the secrets of the Muslims and pass them on to their enemies. Here God warns the Muslims to note this hypocrisy and take the necessary precaution.

هٰۤاَنۡتُمۡ اُولَاۤءِ تُحِبُّوۡنَهُمۡ وَلَا يُحِبُّوۡنَكُمۡ وَتُؤۡمِنُوۡنَ بِالۡكِتٰبِ كُلِّهٖ ​ۚ وَاِذَا لَقُوۡكُمۡ قَالُوۡۤا اٰمَنَّا  ۖۚ وَاِذَا خَلَوۡا عَضُّوۡا عَلَيۡكُمُ الۡاَنَامِلَ مِنَ الۡغَيۡظِ​ؕ قُلۡ مُوۡتُوۡا يۡظِكُمۡؕ​اِنَّ اللّٰهَ عَلِيۡمٌ ۢ بِذَاتِ الصُّدُوۡرِ‏ 
( 119 )   Here you are loving them but they are not loving you, while you believe in the Scripture - all of it. And when they meet you, they say, "We believe." But when they are alone, they bite their fingertips at you in rage. Say, "Die in your rage. Indeed, Allah is Knowing of that within the breasts."
It is strange that although the Muslims had reason to feel aggrieved by the Jews it was the latter who felt aggrieved by the Muslims. Since the Muslims believed in the Torah along with the Qur'an the Jews had no justifiable ground for complaint. If anyone had cause to complain it was the Muslims for the Jews did not believe in the Qur'an.

Yusuf Ali Explanation:
Islam gives you the complete revelation, "the whole of the Book," though partial revelations have come in all ages. (Cf. iii. 23).

اِنۡ تَمۡسَسۡكُمۡ حَسَنَةٌ تَسُؤۡهُمۡ وَاِنۡ تُصِبۡكُمۡ سَيِّئَةٌ يَّفۡرَحُوۡا بِهَا ​ۚ وَاِنۡ تَصۡبِرُوۡا وَتَتَّقُوۡا لَا يَضُرُّكُمۡ كَيۡدُهُمۡ شَيۡـئًا ؕ اِنَّ اللّٰهَ بِمَا يَعۡمَلُوۡنَ مُحِيۡطٌ
( 120 )   If good touches you, it distresses them; but if harm strikes you, they rejoice at it. And if you are patient and fear Allah, their plot will not harm you at all. Indeed, Allah is encompassing of what they do.
This is the end of Part IV. In the next Part V (Verses 121 - 175), a review of the Battle of Uhd has been made to teach and reassure the Muslims that the machinations of their enemies could do them no harm, if they would practice restraint and fortitude and have fear of Allah. It has been pointed out that the set-back they had suffered was due to the lack of some moral qualities and the existence of some evils. Since the main cause of the defeat was the greed of the archers, guarding the pass, the taking of interest has been prohibited to eradicate this evil.

You may now like to listen to Arabic recitation of Sürah Al i Imran with English subtitles:

You may refer to our post "114 Chapters (Sūrahs) of the Holy Qur'an" for translation, meaning and summary / exegesis of other chapters (Though not complete but building up from 30th Juzʼ / Part backwards for chapters in 30th Juzʼ / Part are shorter and easier to understand). 

You may also refer to our Reference Pages for knowing more about Islam and Quran.
Photo | References | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 |
Reading the Holy Quran should be a daily obligation of a Muslim - Reading it with translation will make it meaningful. But reading its Exegesis / Tafsir will make you understand it fully.

An effort has been made to gather explanation / exegesis of the surahs of the Holy Qur'an from authentic sources and then present a least possible condensed explanation of the surah. In that:
  • The plain translation has been taken from the Holy Quran officially published by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. [1]
  • The exegesis of the chapters of the Holy Quran is mainly based on the "Tafhim al-Qur'an - The Meaning of the Qur'an" by one of the most enlightened scholars of the Muslim World Sayyid Abul Ala Maududi. [2]
In order to augment and add more explanation as already provided by [2], additional input has been interjected from following sources: 
In addition the references of  other sources which have been explored have also been given above. Those desirous of detailed explanations and tafsir (exegesis), may refer to these sites.

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