Thursday 20 May 2021

Sūrah Al-Ḥashr - The Gathering: Tafsir / Exegesis 59th Chapter of Qur'ān

Sūrah Al-Ḥashr " الحشر "  - The Gathering (also known as Banishment, Exodus, The Mustering) is the fifty ninth sürah with 24 āyāt with three rukus, part of the 28th Juzʼ  of the Qur'ān. The Surah derives its name from the mention of the word al-hashr in verse 2, thereby implying that it is the Surah in which the word al-hashr has occurred.

Sūrah Al-Ḥashr is one of those five undisputed surah which is known as "Al-Musabbihat," that is surahs begin with the glorification of Allah. The other four surahs are (1) Al-Hadid; (2) As-Saff; (3) Al-Jumu’ah; and (4) At-Taghabun. 
Surah al-Hashr 59:11 onward. The Topkapi manuscript, which is generally attributed to Caliph Uthman, is preserved at the Sacred Relics Section at the Topkapi Palace Museum in Istanbul. A folio in the beginning of the manuscript, written in Ottoman Turkish on June 12, 1811, states that this manuscript was copied by Caliph Uthman himself, that it was originally kept in a library in Cairo, and that Mehmet Ali Pasha, governor of Egypt, sent it to Sultan Mahmud II as a gift in 1811, with a request that it should be kept at the Topkapi Palace. Some have opined this manuscript is more probably copied from the original Mushaf produced by Caliph Uthman (ra). The Topkapi Mushaf, written on antelope skin, consists of 408 folios with the dimensions of 41x46cm. The thickness of each folio is 11cm. Each folio on average has 18 lines. [Source Qur'an Wiki]
This Surah is the third of the ten short Surahs (S. lvii. to S. lxvi.), all revealed in Madinah, and each dealing with some special point which needs emphasis in the social life of the Ummat.  The special here is how treachery to the Ummat on the part of its enemies recoils: enemies themselves, while it strengthens the bond between the different segments of the Ummat itself, and this is illustrated by the story of the expulsion of the Jewish tribe of the Banu Nadhir in Rabi I, A.H. 4.
As for the period and place of the revelation of this sūrah, Bukhari and Muslim contain a tradition from Hadrat Sa'id bin Jubair to the effect "When I asked Hadrat Abdullah bin Abbas about Surah Al-Hashr, he replied that it was sent down concerning the battle against the Bani an-Nadir just as Surah Al-Anfal was sent down concerning the Battle of Badr. In another tradition from Hadrat Sa'id bin Jubair, the words cited from Ibn Abbas (may Allah be pleased with him) are: Qul: Surah an-Nadir: Say, it is Surah an-Nadir." The same thing has been related also from Mujahid, Qatadah, Zuhri, Ibn Zaid, Yazid bin Ruman, Muhammad bin Ishaq and others. They are unanimous that the followers of the Book whose banishment has been mentioned in it, imply the Bani an-Nadir. Yazid bin Ruman, Mujahid and Muhammad bin Ishaq have stated that this whole Surah, from beginning to end, came down concerning this very battle.
As for the question as to when this battle took place, Imam Zuhri has stated on the authority of Urwah bin Zubair that it took place six months after the Battle of Badr. However, Ibn Sa'd, Ibn Hisham and Baladhuri regard it as an event of Rabi' al-Awwal, A. H. 4, and the same is correct. For all traditions agree that this battle took place after the incident of Bi'r Ma'unah, and historically also it is well known that the incident of Bir Ma'unah occurred after the Battle of Uhud and not before it.

Ibn `Abbas used to call this chapter, `Surah Bani An-Nadir.' Sa`id bin Mansur recorded that Sa`id bin Jubayr said, "I asked Ibn `Abbas about Surat Al-Hashr and he said, `It was revealed about Bani An-Nadir.''' Al-Bukhari and Muslim recorded it using another chain of narration from Ibn `Abbas. Al-Bukhari also recorded it from Abu `Awanah, from Abu Bishr from Sa`id bin Jubayr, who said, "I asked Ibn `Abbas, `Surat Al-Hashr' He said, `Surah Bani An-Nadir.''' [3]

The sürah has been divided into three Ruku as under:
  • Ruku One:  Verses 1-10: In the first four verses the world has been, admonished to take heed of the fate that had just befallen the Bani an-Nadir. A major tribe which was as strong in numbers as the Muslims, whose people boasted of far more wealth and possession who were by no means ill equipped militarily and whose forts were well fortified could not stand siege even for a few Days, and expressed their readiness to accept banishment from their centuries old, well established settlement even though not a single man from among them was slain. Allah says that this happened not because of any power possessed by the Muslims but because the Jews had tried to resist and fight Allah and His Messenger, and those who dare to resist the power of Allah, always meet with the same fate. In verse 5, the rule of the law of war that has been enunciated is: the destruction caused in the enemy territory for military purposes does not come under "spreading mischief in the earth." In verses 6-10 it has been stated how the lands and properties which come under the control of the Islamic State as a result of war or peace terms, are to be managed. As it was the first ever occasion that the Muslims took control of a conquered territory, the law concerning it was laid down for their guidance.
  • Ruku Two: Verses 11-17: In verses 11-17 the attitude that the hypocrites had adopted on the occasion of the battle against the Bani an-Nadir has been reviewed and the causes underlying it have been pointed out.
  • Ruku Two: Verses 18-24: The whole of the last section (vv. 18-24) is an admonition for all those people who had professed to have affirmed the faith and joined the Muslim community, but were devoid of the true spirit of the faith. In it they have been told what is the real demand of the Faith, what is the real difference between piety and wickedness, what is the place and importance of the Quran which they professed to believe in, and what are the attributes of God in Whom they claimed to have believed.
We have already presented the background / overview / summary of the sürah, which also includes its recitation in Arabic with English subtitles. Let us now read the verse by verse translation and exegesis / tafseer in English. 

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

Ruku One:  Verses 1-10:
سَبَّحَ لِلّٰهِ مَا فِى السَّمٰوٰتِ وَمَا فِى الۡاَرۡضِۚ وَهُوَ الۡعَزِيۡزُ الۡحَكِيۡمُ‏ 
( 1 )   Whatever is in the heavens and whatever is on the earth exalts Allah, and He is the Exalted in Might, the Wise.
For explanation, see explanation of verse 1 of Surah Al-Hadid(reproduced herein under). 
That is, it has always been so that everything in the universe has proclaimed the truth that its Creator and Sustainer is free from every blemish and defect, every weakness, error and evil. He is glorified in His essence, He is glorified in His attributes, He is glorified in His works as well as His commands whether they relate to the creation, or to the religious law for mankind. Here sabbaha سَبَّحَ  has been used in the past tense; at other places yusabbihu has been used which includes both the present and the future tenses. This would signify that every particle in the universe has always been extolling the glory of its Creator and Sustainer in the past, is doing at present and will continue to do the same in the future forever and ever.

That is, not only is He All-Mighty and All-Wise, but the truth is that He alone is All-Mighty and All-Wise. The word Aziz signifies a mighty and powerful Being Whose decrees cannot be prevented by any power in the world from being enforced, Whom no one can oppose and resist, Who has to be obeyed by every one whether one likes it or not, Whose rebel cannot escape His accountability and punishment in any way. The word Hakim signifies that whatever He does, He does it wisely. His creation, His administration and rule, His commands and guidance, all are based on wisdom. None of His works is tarnished by any tract of folly or ignorance. 

There is another fine point here, which one should fully understand. Seldom in the Quran has Allah’s attribute of Aziz (All-Mighty) been accompanied by His attributes of being Qawi (Strong), Muqtadir (Powerful), Jabber (Omnipotent), Dhuntiqam (Avenger) and the like, which only signify His absolute power, and this has been so only in places where the context demanded that the wicked and disobedient be warned of Allah’s relentless punishment. Apart from such few places, wherever the word Aziz has been used for Allah, it has everywhere been accompanied by one Or other of His attributes of being Hakim (Wise), Alim (Knower), Rahim (Merciful), Ghafur (Forgiving), Wahhab (Generous) and Hamid (Praiseworthy). The reason is that if a being who wields un-limited power is at the same time unwise, ignorant, un-forgiving as well as stingy and devoid of character, its power and authority cannot but lead to injustice and wickedness. Thus, wherever injustice and wickedness is being committed in the world, it is only because the one who wields authority over others, is either using his power un-wisely and foolishly, or he is merciless and hardhearted, or evil-minded and wicked. Wherever power is coupled with these evil traits of character, no good can be expected to result. That is why in the Quran Allah’s attribute of Aziz has necessarily been accompanied by His attributes of being All-Wise and Knowing, Compassionate and Forgiving, Praiseworthy and Generous. So that man may know that the God Who is ruling this universe has, on the one hand, such absolute power that no one, from the earth to the heavens, can prevent His decrees from being enforced. But, on the other hand, He is also All-Wise: His each decision is based on perfect wisdom. He is also All- Knowing: whatever decision He makes, it is precisely according to knowledge. He is also Compassionate: He does not use infinite power mercilessly. He is Forgiving as well: He does not punish His creatures for trifling faults, but overlooks their errors. He is also Generous: He does not treat His subjects stingily, but liberally and benevolently. And He is also Praiseworthy: He combines in Himself all praiseworthy virtues and excellences.

The importance of this statement of the Quran can be better understood by those people who are aware of the discussions of the philosophy of politics and law on the question of sovereignty. Sovereignty connotes that the one who possesses it should wield un-limited power: there should be no internal and external power to change or modify his decision or prevent it from being enforced, and none should have any alternative but to obey him. At the mere concept of this infinite and un-limited power, man’s common-sense necessarily demands that whoever attains to such power, should be faultless and perfect in knowledge and wisdom, for if the one holding this power is ignorant, merciless and evil, his sovereignty will inevitably lead to wickedness and corruption. That is why the philosophers, who regarded a single man, or a man-made institution, or an assembly of men as the holder of this power, have had to presume that he or it would be infallible. But obviously, neither can unlimited sovereignty be actually attained by a human power, nor is it possible for a king, or a parliament, or a nation, or a party that it may use the sovereignty attained by it in a limited circle faultlessly and harmlessly. The reason is that the wisdom that is wholly free of every trace of folly, and the knowledge that fully comprehends all the related truths, is not at all possessed even by entire mankind, not to speak of its being attained by an individual, or an institution, or a nation. Likewise, as long as man is man, his being wholly free of and above selfishness, sensuality, fear, greed, desires, prejudice and sentimental love, anger and hate is also not possible. If a person ponders over these truths, he will realize that the Quran is indeed presenting here a correct and perfect view of sovereignty. It says that no one except Allah in this universe is possessor of absolute power, and with this unlimited power He alone is faultless, All-Wise and All- Knowing, Compassionate and Forgiving, and Praiseworthy and Generous in His dealings with Hid subjects. 

The object of this introductory sentence before making an appraisal of the banishment of the Bani an-Nadir is to prepare the mind to understand the truth that the fate this powerful tribe met was not the result of the power of the Muslims but a manifestation of the power of Allah. 

Yusuf Ali  Explanation: This verse, introducing the Sura is identical with lvii. 1. introducing S. lvii. The theme of both is the wonderful working of Allah's Plan and Providence. In the one case it referred to the conquest of Makkah and taught the lesson of humility. In this case it refers to the dislodgment of the treacherous Banu Nadhir from their nest of intrigue in the neighbourhood of Madinah practically without a blow. See next note.

Javed Ahmad Ghamidi Explanation: The implication is that every object of this universe through its very existence has always declared that God is beyond equating the fates of the wrongdoers and the righteous. Hence He shall seize the wrongdoers because He is wise and no wrongdoer would be able to escape from His grasp because He is also mighty.

هُوَ الَّذِىۡۤ اَخۡرَجَ الَّذِيۡنَ كَفَرُوۡا مِنۡ اَهۡلِ الۡكِتٰبِ مِنۡ دِيَارِهِمۡ لِاَوَّلِ الۡحَشۡرِ​ؔؕ مَا ظَنَنۡـتُمۡ اَنۡ يَّخۡرُجُوۡا​ وَظَنُّوۡۤا اَنَّهُمۡ مَّانِعَتُهُمۡ حُصُوۡنُهُمۡ مِّنَ اللّٰهِ فَاَتٰٮهُمُ اللّٰهُ مِنۡ حَيۡثُ لَمۡ يَحۡتَسِبُوۡا وَقَذَفَ فِىۡ قُلُوۡبِهِمُ الرُّعۡبَ يُخۡرِبُوۡنَ بُيُوۡتَهُمۡ بِاَيۡدِيۡهِمۡ وَاَيۡدِى الۡمُؤۡمِنِيۡنَ فَاعۡتَبِـرُوۡا يٰۤاُولِى الۡاَبۡصَارِ​‏ 

( 2 )   It is He who expelled the ones who disbelieved among the People of the Scripture from their homes at the first gathering. You did not think they would leave, and they thought that their fortresses would protect them from Allah; but [the decree of] Allah came upon them from where they had not expected, and He cast terror into their hearts [so] they destroyed their houses by their [own] hands and the hands of the believers. So take warning, O people of vision.

" He it is Who in the first assault drove forth the People of the Book that disbelieved from their homes " Here, the reader should understand one thing at the outset so as to avoid any confusion about the banishment of the Bani an-Nadir. The Holy Prophet (upon whom be Allah's peace) had concluded a formal written treaty with the Bani an-Nadir. They had not broken this agreement as such that it should have become void But the reason why they were attacked was that after making different kinds of minor violations of it, they at last committed such an offense which amounted to the breach of trust. That is, they plotted to kill the leader of the other party to the treaty, i. e. the Islamic State of Madinah. The plot became exposed, and when the were accused of breaking the agreement they could not deny it Thereupon, the Holy Prophet (upon whom be Allah's peace) told them either to leave Madinah or to be ready for a war. This notice was in accordance with this injunction of the Qur'an: "If you ever fear treachery from any people, throw their treaty openly before them. " (AI-Anfal: 58) That is why Allah is describing their exile as His own action, for it was precisely in accordance with Divine Law. In other words, they were not expelled by the Holy Prophet (upon whom be Allah's peace) and the Muslims but by Allah Himself. The other reason why Allah has described their exile as His own action, has been stated in the following verses.

" at the first gathering of forces " The word hashr " الحشر " in the Text means to gather the scattered individuals to gather or to take out scattered individuals after mustering them together. Thus, the words li-awwal-il-hashr " لِاَوَّلِ الۡحَشۡرِ " mean: with the first hashr or on the occasion of the first hashr. As for the question, what is implied by the first hashr here, the commentators have disputed it. According to one group it implies the banishment of the Bani an-Nadir from Madinah, and this has been described as their first hashr in the sense that their second hashr took place in the time of Hadrat `Umar, when the Jews and the Christians were expelled from the Arabian peninsula, and the final hashr will take place on the Day of Resurrection. According to the second group it implies the gathering of the Muslim army together to fight the Bani an-Nadir; and li-awwal-il-hashr means that as soon as the Muslims had gathered together to fight them, and no blood yet had been shed, they, by the manifestation of Allah's power, offered to be banished from Madinah of their own accord. In other words, these words have been used here in the meaning of "at the very first assault". Shah Waliullah has translated it "at the first gathering of the army". Shah 'Abdul Qadir has translated it "at the first mustering." In our opinion this translation very nearly gives the meaning of these words.

" You did not believe that they would leave; while they too thought that their fortresses would defend them against Allah " To understand this one should keep in mind the fact that the Bani an Nadir had been well established here for centuries. They lived in compact populations outside Madinah without any lien element. Their settlement was well fortified, which had fortified houses as are generally built in feud-ridden tribal areas. Then heir numerical strength also equaled that of the Muslims, and inside Madinah itself many of the hypocrites were their supporters. Therefore, the. Muslims could never expect that they would, even without fighting, be so unnerved by the siege as to leave their homes willingly. likewise, the Bani an-Nadir also could not have imagined that some power would compel them to leave their homes within six days, Although the Bani Qainuqa' had been expelled before them, and their false pride of valor had proved to be of no avail, they lived in a locality inside Madinah and did not have any separate fortified settlement; therefore, the Bani an-Nadir thought that their inability to withstand the Muslims was not exceptionable, Contrary to this, in view of their own fortified settlement and strongholds they could not imagine that some power could turn them out so easily. That is why when the Holy Prophet (upon whom be Allah's peace) served a notice on them to leave Madinah within ten days, they boldly retorted, saying: We are not going to quit: you may do whatever you please."
Here, the question arises: On what basis has Allah said: 'They were thinking that their fortresses would save them from Allah'. Did the Bani an-Nadir really know that they were not facing Muhammad bin `Abdullah (upon whom be Allah's peace) but Allah? And did they, in spite of knowing this, think that their fortresses would save them from Allah? .This is a question which would confound every such person who does not know the psychology of the Jewish people and their centuries-old traditions. As regards the common men, no one can imagine that despite their knowing consciously that they were facing Allah, they would Entertain the false hope that their forts and weapons would save them from Allah. Therefore, an ignorant person would interpret the Divine Word, saying that the Bani an-Nadir in view of the strength of their forts were apparently involved in the misunderstanding that they would remain safe from the Holy Prophet's attack, but in reality they were fighting Allah and from Him their forts could not save them. But the fact is that the Jews in this world are a strange people, who have been knowingly fighting Allah: they killed the Prophets of Allah knowing them to be His Prophets, and they declared boastfully and arrogantly that they had killed the Prophets of Allah. Their traditions say that their great Patriarch, the prophet Jacob, wrestled with Allah throughout the night and Allah could not throw him even till daybreak. .Then, when at daybreak Allah asked Jacob to let Him go, Jacob replied that he would not let Him go until He blessed him. Allah asked him his name, and he answer `Jacob Allah said that his name would no longer be Jacob, but Israel, "because you strove with God and with men, and prevailed." (See Gen. 32: 25-29 in the latest Jewish translation; The Scriptures Scriptures, published by the Jewish Publication Society of America 1954). In the Christian translation of the Bible too this subject has been rendered likewise. In the footnote of the Jewish translation, "Israel" has been explained as: He who striveth with God. " In the Cyclopaedia of Biblical Literature the meaning given of Israel" by the Christian scholars is: "Wrestler with God." Then in Hosea (O.T.) the Prophet Jacob has been praised thus: "By his strength he had power with God: yea, he had power over the angel, and prevailed. " (Ch. 12: 3-4). Now, obviously, the people of Israel are the children of the same Prophet Israel who, according to their faith, had striven with God and wrestled with Him. For them it is not at all difficult that they should stand firm and fight even God. On this very basis, they, even according to their own profession, killed the Prophets of God, and under the same false pride they put the Prophet Jesus on the cross and bragged: "We have killed Jesus Christ, son of Mary, Messenger of Allah. " Therefore, it was not against their traditions that they fought Muhammad (upon whom be Allah's peace) despite their knowledge that he was Allah's Messenger. If not their common people, their rabbis and learned men knew full well that he was the Messenger of Allah. The Qur'an itself contains several evidences to this effect. (For instance, see E:N.'s 79, 95 of Al-Baqarah, E.N.'s 190, 191 of An-Nisa, E.N.'s 70, 73 of As-Saaffat).  
" Then Allah came upon them from whence they did not even imagine " Allah's coming down upon them does not mean that Allah was staying in another place whence He attacked them. But this is a metaphoric expression. The object is to give the idea that while facing Allah they were thinking that Allah could chastise them only by bringing an army against them from the front and they were confident that they would resist that force by their fortifications, But Allah attacked them from whence they had not thought it possible; and this was that He made than weak and broke their power of resistance from within after which neither their weapons nor their strongholds could help them.  

"  casting such terror into their hearts that they destroyed their homes by their own hands and their destruction was also caused by the hands of the believers " That is, The destruction occurred in two ways: from outside the Muslims besieged them and started demolishing their fortifications, and from within, first they raised obstacles of stone and wood to stop the Muslims from advancing, and for this purpose broke their own houses for the material; then, when they became certain that they would have to vacate the place, they started pulling down their houses, which they had so fondly built and decorated, with their own hands, so as to render them useless for the Muslims Later, when they settled peace with the Holy Prophet (upon whom be Allah's peace) on the condition that they would be spared their lives but would have the permission to carry away whatever they could, except the weapons and armor, they started removing the frames of the doors and windows, even pegs; so much so that some people removed the beams and wooden ceilings, which they put upon the back of their camels and left."  

" So learn a lesson from this, O you who have perceptive eyes! " There are many lessons which one can learn from this event, which have been alluded to in this brief but eloquent sentence These Jews were none other but the followers of the former Prophets: they believed in God, in the Book, in the former Prophets and the Hereafter. Accordingly, they were the former Muslims. But when they turned their back on religion and morality and adopted open hostility to the truth only for the sake of their selfish desires and worldly motives and interests, and showed scant regard for their treaties and agreements, Allah's grace was turned away from them, otherwise Allah had no personal enmity with than. Therefore, first of all, the Muslims themselves have been admonished to heed their fate and Learn a lesson from it, lest they too should start behaving as if they were the beloved children of God, as the Jews did, and should be involved in the misunderstanding that their being included among the followers of the Last Prophet of God would by itself guarantee for them Allah's bounty and His support, apart from which they were not bound to adhere to any demand of religion and morality. Besides, those people of the world also have been asked to learn a lesson from this event, who oppose the truth consciously, and then place reliance upon their wealth and power, their means and resources, thinking that these would save them from the Divine punishment. The Jews of Madinah were not unaware that the Holy Prophet Muhammad (upon whom be Allah's peace and blessings) had not risen for the supremacy of a people or tribe, but he was presenting an ideological invitation the addressees of which were all men, and every man, no matter what race or country he belonged to, could join his Ummah by accepting the invitation, without discrimination or distinction. They were themselves witnessing that Bilal of Habash, Suhaib of Rome, and Salman of Persia enjoyed the same position and status in the Muslim community as was enjoyed by the people of the Holy Prophet's own house. Therefore, they were not feeling any danger that the Quraish and the Aus and the Khazrij would gain an upper hand over them. Nor were they unaware that the ideological invitation that he was presenting was precisely the same as their own Prophets had been presenting. The Holy Prophet never put forward the claim that he had come with a new religion, unknown to the people, and that the people should give up their former religion and accept his religion ' instead. But what he claimed was that the religion being presented by him was the same that the Prophets of God had been preaching and presenting since the beginning of creation. And from their Torah they could themselves confirm that it was actually the same religion, the principles of which were not any different from the principles of the religion of the Prophets. On the same basis they were told in the Qur'an: Affirm faith in the teaching sent down by Me, which confirms the teaching that you already possess, and you should not be its first deniers." They were also witnessing what character and morals the Holy Prophet (upon whom be Allah's peace) possessed, and what revolution had taken place in the lives of those who had accepted his message. For a long time the Ansar of Madinah had been their closest neighbors. They knew what kind of people they had been before embracing Islam and what they became after their conversion to Islam. Thus, they were well aware of the invitation, of the inviter and of the results of accepting the invitation. But in spite of witnessing and knowing all this, only on account of their racial prejudice and worldly interests, they expended all their energy against the message of truth about which there was no room for doubt at least in their minds. After such an obvious and open hostility to the truth they expected that their strongholds would save them from Allah, whereas the whole human history bears evidence that the one who is resisted by the power of God, cannot save and protect himself by any weapon, means or device.

Yusuf Ali  Explanation: This refers to the Jewish tribe of the Banu Nadhi whose intrigues and treachery nearly undid the Muslim cause during the perilous days of the battle of Uhud in Shawwal, A.H. 3. Four months after, in Rabi, 1. A.H. 4, steps were taken against them. They were asked to leave the strategic position which they occupied, about three miles south of Madinah, endangering the very existence of the Ummat in Madinah. At first they demurred, relying on their fortresses and on their secret alliance with the Pagans of Makkah and the Hypocrites of Madinah. But when the Muslim army was gathered to punish them and actually besieged them for some days, their allies stirred not a finger in their aid, and they were wise enough to leave. Most of them joined their brethren in Syria, which they were permitted to do, after being disarmed. Some of them joined their brethren in Khaibar; see n. 3705 to xxxiii. 27. The Banu Nadhir richly deserved punishment, but their lives were spared, and they were allowed to carry away their goods and chattels.

That is, without actual hostilities, and the shedding of precious Muslim blood.

They had played a double game. Originally they were sworn allies of the Madinah Muslims under the holy Prophet, but they secretly intrigued with the Makkah Pagans under Abu Sufyan and the Madinah Hypocrites. They even tried treacherously to take the life of the Prophet while he was on a visit to them, breaking both the laws of hospitality and their own sworn alliance. They thought the Pagan Quraish of Makkah and the Hypocrites of Madinah would help them, but they did not help them. On the contrary the eleven days siege showed them their own helplessness. Their supplies were cut off; the exigencies of the siege necessitated the destruction of their outlying palm trees; and the unexpected turn in their fortunes disheartened them. Their hearts were stack with terror and they capitulated. But they laid waste their homes before they left: see next note.

Their lives were spared, and they were allowed ten days in which to remove themselves, their families, and such goods as they could carry. In order to leave no habitations for the Muslims they demolished their own houses and laid waste their property, to complete the destruction which the operations of war had already caused at the hands of the besieging force of the Muslims.

Muhammad Asad Explanation:  The tribe of Banu 'n-Nadir - who, as Jews, are naturally termed ahl al-kitab ("followers of earlier revelation") - are characterized as "such as were bent on denying the truth" (alladhina kafaru, (see explanation of 2:6 ) because they treacherously turned against the Prophet despite their earlier admission that he was truly the bearer of God's message announced in their own holy scriptures (Deuteronomy xviii, 15 and 18).

" but God came upon them in a manner which they had not expected " Lit., "from whence they had not thought [it possible]": an allusion to the last-minute, unexpected failure of 'Abd Allah ibn Ubayy to come to their aid.

" they destroyed their homes by their own hands as well as the hands of the believers " Banu 'n-Nadir had originally concluded a treaty of mutual non-interference with the Muslim community, and were to live at Medina as its friendly neighbours; and even later, when their hostility to the Muslims had become apparent and they were ordered to emigrate, they were to be allowed to retain ownership of their plantations. Subsequently, however, they forfeited by their treachery both their citizenship and the rights to their landed property, and thus "destroyed their homes by their own hands".

Javed Ahmad Ghamidi Explanation: Ie., as their first fate. This expression harbours the warning that there are some other fates which they will have to encounter.

This is a mention of the driving out of the Jews of Banu Nadir who lived near Madinah. Imam Amin Ahsan Islahi writes:
… In a nutshell, as per the details recorded by al-Bukhari (no. 3804) although they had made a peace-treaty with the Prophet (sws); however, five months after the battle of Badr they started to connive with the enemies of Islam which was against the terms of the treaty, and were also guilty of unsuccessfully plotting to murder the Prophet (sws). Because of these crimes, the Prophet (sws) asked them to leave Madinah. Initially they agreed but later ‘Abdullah ibn Ubayy, the famous hypocrite, incited them to refuse to go out because two thousand of his men as well as the Quraysh and the Banu Ghatfan were also with them. They were thus lured into this refusal by him. At last, the Prophet laid siege against them. At that time, neither did the Banu Qurayzah came to their rescue nor did the Quraysh and the Banu Ghatfan. They were then compelled to obey the directive of the Prophet (sws). However, they were graciously permitted by him to take along them as much as they could on their camels. Consequently, they went to Khaybar and to Azra‘at with whatever they could take of their belongings. The belongings and assets they left behind were taken into possession by the Prophet (sws). (Amin Ahsan Islahi, Tadabbur-i Qur’an, vol. 8, 283)
This address is to the Hypocrites who are the addressees of this surah.

The actual words are: مِنَ اللّٰہِ. Here, according to linguistic principles, a governing noun (mudaf) is suppressed. The actual expression is to the effect مِنْ بَاْسِ اللّٰہِ or مِنْ عَذَابِ اللّٰہِ.

This is an explanation of from where God came upon them. Imam Amin Ahsan Islahi writes:
… They thought that by building walls of stones and rocks around themselves they would evade God’s grasp; however, God did not even require to dismantle these sturdy structures to come upon them. He attacked them directly by striking terror in their hearts. The result was that in spite of their forts and strongholds they were so terror-struck that they rampaged the houses they constructed with their very hands.(Amin Ahsan Islahi, Tadabbur-i Qur’an, vol. 8, 284)
In other words, some ruin took place because of the attack of the Muslims and some through their own hands because they did not want the Muslims to use their homes in any way when they vacated them.

وَلَوۡلَاۤ اَنۡ كَتَبَ اللّٰهُ عَلَيۡهِمُ الۡجَـلَاۤءَ لَعَذَّبَهُمۡ فِى الدُّنۡيَا​ؕ وَلَهُمۡ فِى الۡاٰخِرَةِ عَذَابُ النَّارِ
( 3 )   And if not that Allah had decreed for them evacuation, He would have punished them in [this] world, and for them in the Hereafter is the punishment of the Fire.
"He would have punished them in [this] world ": world have caused them to be annihilated. That is, had they fought instead of surrendering to save their lives, they would have been completely wiped out. Their men would have perished in the war and their womenfolk and children would have been taken prisoners and there would be no one to have them ransomed. 

Yusuf Ali  Explanation:  Banishment was a comparatively mild punishment for them, but the Providence of Allah had decreed that a chance should be given to them even though they were a treacherous foe. Within two years, their brethren the Banu Quraiza showed that they had not profited by their example, and had to be dealt with in another way: see xxxiii. 26 and notes - reproduced herein under:
(Surah 33 Al Ahzab :26) And those of the people of the Book who aided them Allah did take them down from their strongholds and cast terror into their hearts (so that) some ye slew and some ye made prisoners.
The reference is to the Jewish tribe of the Banu Quraiza. They counted among the citizens of Madinah and were bound by solemn engagements to help in the defence of the City. But on the occasion of the Confederate siege by the Quraish and their allies they intrigued with the enemies and treacherously aided them. Immediately after the siege was raised and the Confederates had fled in hot haste, the Prophet turned his attention to these treacherous "friends" who had betrayed his City in the hour of danger.
The Banu Quraiza (see last note) were filled with terror and dismay when Madinah was free from the Quraish danger. They shut themselves up in their castles about three or four miles to the east (or north east) of Madinah, and sustained a siege of 25 days, after which they surrendered, stipulating that they would abide by the decision of their fate at the hands of Sad ibn Mu'az, chief of the Aus tribe, with which they had been in alliance.
Sad applied to them the Jewish Law of the Old Testament, not as strictly as the case warranted. In Deut. xx. 10-18, the treatment of a city "which is very far off from thee" is prescribed to be comparatively more lenient than the treatment of a city "of those people, which the Lord thy God does give thee for an inheritance," i.e., which is near enough to corrupt the religion of the Jewish people. The punishment for these is total annihilation: "thou shalt save alive nothing that breatheth" (Deut. xx. 16). The more lenient treatment for far-off cities is described in the next note. According to the Jewish standard, then, the Banu Quraiza deserved total extermination-of men, women, and children. They were in the territory of Madinah itself, and further they had broken their engagements and helped the enemy.
Sad adjudged them the milder treatment of the "far-off" cities which is thus described in the Jewish Law: "Thou shalt smite every male thereof with the edge of the sword: but the women and the little ones, and the cattle, and all that is in the city, even all the spoil thereof, shalt thou take unto thyself, and thou shalt eat the spoil of thine enemies, which the Lord thy God hath given thee" (Deut. xx. 13-14). The men of the Quraiza were slain: the women were sold as captives of war; and their lands and properties were divided among the Muhijirs.

Javed Ahmad Ghamidi Explanation: Ie., He would have punished them in the same manner as He punished the ‘Ad, the Thamud and the Pharaoh and they would have been wiped out. However, God wanted to keep them so that they could become an example of His reward and punishment till the Day of Judgement. Thus He has decided that in their national capacity He will keep on punishing them by exiling them every now and then.

ذٰ لِكَ بِاَنَّهُمۡ شَآقُّوا اللّٰهَ وَرَسُوۡلَهٗ​ ۚ وَمَنۡ يُّشَآقِّ اللّٰهَ فَاِنَّ اللّٰهَ شَدِيۡدُ الۡعِقَابِ‏ 
( 4 )   That is because they opposed Allah and His Messenger. And whoever opposes Allah - then indeed, Allah is severe in penalty.

Yusuf Ali  Explanation: The punishment of the Banu Nadhir was because in breaking their plighted word with the Messenger and in actively resisting Allah's Message and supporting the enemies of that Message, they rebelled against him. For such treason and rebellion the punishment is severe, and yet in this case it was seasoned with Mercy.

Javed Ahmad Ghamidi Explanation: The actual words are: وَ مَنۡ یُّشَآقِّ اللّٰہَ. The word وَ رَسُوۡلَہٗ has been suppressed after وَ مَنۡ یُّشَآقِّ اللّٰہَ which indicates that opposing the Prophet (sws) is tantamount to opposing God.

مَا قَطَعۡتُمۡ مِّنۡ لِّيۡنَةٍ اَوۡ تَرَكۡتُمُوۡهَا قَآئِمَةً عَلٰٓى اُصُوۡلِهَا فَبِاِذۡنِ اللّٰهِ وَلِيُخۡزِىَ الۡفٰسِقِيۡنَ‏ 
( 5 )   Whatever you have cut down of [their] palm trees or left standing on their trunks - it was by permission of Allah and so He would disgrace the defiantly disobedient.
The reference is to the fact that the Muslims cut down or burnt many of the palm-trees that stood in the oases around the settlement of the Bani an Nadir in order to facilitate the siege, However, they left those trees standing which did not obstruct the military operations. At this the hypocrites of Madinah and the Bani Quraizah, and the Bani an-Nadir themselves, raised a clamor, saying that, on the one hand, Muhammad (upon whom be Allah's peace and blessings) prohibited spreading disorder in the world, but, on the other, fruit trees were being cut down by his command, which amounted to spreading disorder in the world. At this Allah sent down the Command: 'Whatever trees you cut down, or whatever you left standing, your neither act was unlawful, but it had Allah's permission." The legal injunction that is derived from this verse is that the destruction caused for the sake of military operations does not come under "spreading disorder in the world. " But spreading disorder in the world is that an army under the fit of war hysteria should intrude into the enemy territory and start destroying the crops, cattle. gardens, houses and everything in its way without any reason. In this matter. the general instruction is the same which Hadrat Abu Bakr Siddiq gave while dispatching the Muslim army to Syria: "Do not cut down fruit trees; do not destroy crops; do not ravage the settlements." This was precisely in accordance with the Qur'anic teaching, which condemns those who spread chaos; 'When they get power they direct all their efforts towards spreading corruption in the land, destroying harvests and killing people." (AI-Baqarah: 205). But the specific command in respect of the war exigencies is that if destruction is necessary for military operations against the enemy, it is lawful. Thus, Hadrat 'Abdullah bin Mas'ud has given this explanation in the commentary of this verse: 'The Muslims had cut down only those trees of the Bani an-Nadir that stood on the battlefield. " (Tafsir Nisaburi). Some of the Muslim jurists have overlooked this aspect of the matter and expressed the opinion that the permissibility of cutting the trees of the Bani an-Nadir was confined only to that particular event. It does not make it generally permissible that whenever war necessitates trees of the enemy be cut down and burnt. Imam Auza'i, Laith and Abu Thaur hold this same opinion. But the majority of the jurists hold the view that for the sake of important military operations it is permissible. However, this is not permissible for the purpose of mere destruction and pillage.
One may ask: This verse of the Qur'an could satisfy the Muslims, but how could those who did not accept the Qur'an as Divine Word be satisfied at this reply to their objection that both acts were permissible as they had Allah's permission for it? The answer is: This verse of the Qur'an was sent down to satisfy only the Muslims; it was not sent down to satisfy the disbelievers. Since due to the objection of the Jews and the hypocrites, or due to their own thinking, they had been involved in the misgiving whether they were guilty of spreading disorder in the earth, Allah gave them the satisfaction that both the acts, cutting down some trees to facilitate the siege and leaving some other trees standing which did not obstruct the siege, were in accordance with Divine Law.
The traditionists in their traditions have disputed the point whether the order to cut and burn the trees had been given by the Holy Prophet (upon whom be Allah's peace himself, or whether the Muslims had done it of their own accord, and then later asked the Holy Prophet about its legal aspect. Hadrat Abdullah bin 'Umar has reported that the Holy Prophet himself had ordered it. (Bukhari, Muslim , Musnad Ahmad, Ibn Jarir). The same also has been reported by Yazid bin. Ruman (Ibn Jarir). On the contrary, Mujahid and Qatadah say that the Muslims had on their own cut down the trees; then a dispute arose among them whether what they had done was permissible or not. Some said it was permissible and some said it was not. At last Allah sent down this verse and approved the act of both. (Ibn Jarir). The same thing is supported by a tradition of Hadrat 'Abdullah bin 'Abbas: 'The Muslims were confused because Some of them had cut the trees and others had not; therefore, they wanted to ask the Holy Prophet (upon whom be Allah's peace) as to who would be rewarded for the act and who would be punished.' (Nasa i). Those of the jurists who have preferred the first tradition give the argument that this was the Holy Prophet's personal judgment, which was later ratified by revelation from Allah, and this a proof of the fact that in matters where no Divine Command existed, the Holy Prophet used to follow his personal judgment. On the other hand, those jurists who have preferred the second tradition, argue that the two groups of the Muslims had adopted two different views on the basis of their own personal judgments and Allah ratified both. Therefore, if the learned men arrive at different conclusions by judicious exercise of their personal judgment, then although their opinions might differ, they would all be correct in the Divine Shari ah.  

" (Allah granted you this leave) in order that He might humiliate the evil-doers. " That is, "Allah willed that they should be disgraced if you cut down the trees and also if you left them standing." In the first case, they were disgraced when they saw that the trees of the gardens which they had planted with their own hands and which they had owned since ages, were being cut down before their very eyes and they were watching it helplessly. Even an ordinary peasant and gardener cannot tolerate another's misappropriation or intrusion into his field or garden. He would protect his field or garden at the risk of his life if somebody tried to destroy it in his presence. For if he cannot prevent destruction of his property, it would be a sign of his extreme humiliation and weakness. But here a whole tribe, which had been living at this place fearlessly and boldly for centuries, was watching helplessly that its neighbors had invaded its gardens and were destroying the trees while it could do nothing. After this even if they stayed on in Madinah they would have lived in disgrace and humility. In the second case, they were disgraced when on leaving Madinah they saw that the lush green gardens which had been in their possession till the previous day were now passing into the possession of the Muslims. Had they the power they would have laid waste the entire gardens by their own hands SO that not a single whole tree passed into the hands of the Muslims. But in their helplessness they left the city, despaired and grief-stricken, leaving everything intact behind.

Yusuf Ali  Explanation: The unnecessary cutting down of fruit trees or destruction of crops, or any wanton destruction whatever in war, is forbidden by the law and practice of Islam. But some destruction may be necessary for putting pressure on the enemy, and to that extent it is allowed. But as far as possible, consistently with that objective of military operations, such trees should not be cut down. Both these principles are in accordance with the Divine Will, and were followed by the Muslims in their expedition.

The arrogance of the Banu Nadhir had to be humbled, and their power for mischief destroyed.

Muhammad Asad Explanation: To facilitate the military operations against the strongholds of the Banu 'n-Nadir ('Abd Allah ibn Mas'ud, as quoted by Zamakhshari et al.). It should, however, be noted that apart from such stringent military exigencies, all destruction of enemy property - and, in particular, of trees and crops - had been and continued to be prohibited by the Prophet (Tabari, Baghawi, Zamakhshari, Razi, Ibn Kathir), and has thus become an integral part of Islamic Law.

Javed Ahmad Ghamidi Explanation: This objection was raised by the Jews. When Muslims attacked them they chopped off some trees from their orchards. These trees were not cut because of intention of some foul play or to seek revenge; they were cut keeping in view the needs and requirements of the battle and to make these wrongdoers reach their fate. Similarly, the trees which were left intact was not because Muslims needed them but because they were not at the site of the battle and the Muslims did not need to cut them. However, the Jews used this incident to launch a propaganda against Islam. They declared that Muslims who claim to be reformers in the land have ruined their orchards by chopping off good quality fruit-laden palm trees and in this way were guilty of spreading disorder in the land which was what most victors do. The Qur’an has answered this objection; however, since those who had raised this objection were not worthy of being addressed, hence it has addressed the Muslims while giving this answer. Muslims are told that they should not care about what these people are saying; whatever they did was in the presence of the messenger of God and at his behest. In other words, they had God’s permission in this regard and God gave them this permission so that they could see from their very eyes the destruction of their luxuriant orchards and also witness them going into the hands of the Muslims and were thus humiliated before the Day of Judgement in this very world so that the promise of God was fulfilled. The promise referred to is the one that those who try to oppose Him even after the truth is conclusively conveyed to them by God will ultimately reach this fate.

وَمَاۤ اَفَآءَ اللّٰهُ عَلٰى رَسُوۡلِهٖ مِنۡهُمۡ فَمَاۤ اَوۡجَفۡتُمۡ عَلَيۡهِ مِنۡ خَيۡلٍ وَّلَا رِكَابٍ وَّلٰڪِنَّ اللّٰهَ يُسَلِّطُ رُسُلَهٗ عَلٰى مَنۡ يَّشَآءُ ​ؕ وَاللّٰهُ عَلٰى كُلِّ شَىۡءٍ قَدِيۡرٌ‏ 
( 6 )   And what Allah restored [of property] to His Messenger from them - you did not spur for it [in an expedition] any horses or camels, but Allah gives His messengers power over whom He wills, and Allah is over all things competent.
From here to the end of verse 10, Allah explains how the lands and properties that were restored to the Islamic State after the exile of the Ban; an- Nadir, are to be managed and administered. As it was the first occasion that a land was conquered and included in the Islamic territory, and many more lands were destined to be conquered in the future, the law governing the conquered lands was enunciated at the outset. Here, a note-worthy point is that Allah at this place has used the words: Ma af'-Allahu ala Rasuli-hi min-hum "whatever Allah restored to His Messenger from them." These words clearly imply that the rebels of Allah Almighty are not entitled to own the earth and things existing on it. If they have become their owners and are appropriating them, their ownership and appropriation of these things is, in fact, in the nature of usurpation of a master's property by a dishonest servant. The real right of these properties is that these should be spent and used in the service and obedience of their real Master, Allah, Lord of the worlds, according to His will, and their this use is possible only through the agency of the righteous believers. Therefore, the true position of the properties which pass from the ownership of the disbelievers into the hands of the Muslims as the result of a lawful war, is that their real Owner has withdrawn them from His disobedient and disloyal servants, and restored them to His obedient and loyal servants. That is why, in the terminology of the Islamic Law such properties have been described as Fai (restored properties).  

" for which you spurred neither horses nor camels; but Allah grants authority to His Messengers over whomsoever He pleases. Allah has power over everything " That is, "The restoration of these properties to the Muslims is not the result of the effort of the actual fighting army so that the army on that basis may have the right that the properties may be distributed among the soldiers, but its real nature is that Allah by His bounty has given dominance to His Messengers and the system that they represent over them. In other words, the passing of these properties into the Muslims' hands is not the direct result of the effort and struggle of the fighting army, but the result of the total strength that Allah has bestowed on His Messenger and his community and the system established by him Therefore, these properties are quite different in nature from the spoils of war and so cannot be distributed among the soldiers as such.

Thus, the Shariah has made a distinction between ghanimah (spoils of war) and fai (restored properties).
 The injunction in respect of the ghanimah has been given in surah AI-Anfal: 41, and it is this "It should be divided in five parts, four parts of which be distributed among the fighting army and the fifth deposited in the Public Treasury (Bait al-Mal), and expended on the items mentioned in the verse."
As for the fai, the injunction is that it should not be distributed among the army, but it should be reserved for the items of expenditure being stated in the following verse. The distinction between the two has been made plain by the words: "You have not rushed your horses and camels on them," which imply the military operations. Thus, the properties which are taken as a direct result of such operations are the ghnimah and those which arc not the result of these operations are the fai. The distinction between ghanimah and tai that has been mentioned in this verse, has been explained in greater detail by the jurists of Islam. 
Ghanimah are only those transferable properties which are taken from the enemy during military action; other things than these, e.g. lands, houses and other transferable and nontransferable properties of the enemy, are excluded from the definition of ghanimah and are fai. The source of this explanation is the letter that Hadrat 'Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) had written to Hadrat Sa'd bin Abi Waqqas after the conquest of 'Iraq. In that letter he wrote: "Distribute the properties and goods which the soldiers of the army collected and brought to your camp among the Muslims who participated in the war, and leave the lands and the canals with those who work on them so that the proceeds thereof are used for the salaries of the Muslims." (Abu Yusuf. Kitab al-Kharaj, p. 24; Abu 'Ubaid, Kitab al-Amwal, p. 59; Yahya bin Adam, Kitab al-Kharaj, pp. 27-28, 48). On this very basis, Hadrat Hasan Basri says: "Whatever is taken from the enemy camp, is the right of those who won victory over it? and the lands are for the Muslims." Yahya bin Adam, p. 27). And Imam Abu Yusuf says: “Whatever the Muslims take from the enemy troops, and whatever goods and arms and cattle they collect and bring to their camp, is ghanimah; from this one-fifth will be deducted and the rest distributed among the soldiers." (Kitab al-Kharaj, p. 18). The same is the opinion of Yahya bin Adam, which he has expressed in his Kitab al-Kharaj (p. 27). Even more than this, what makes the distinction between ghanimah and fai clearer is that after the Battle of Nahawand when the ghanimah had been distributed and the conquered lands had been included in the Islamic State. a man named Sa'ib bin Aqra' found two bags of jewels outside the fort. He was confused whether it was the ghanimah which should be distributed in the army, or the fai which should be deposited in the Bait al-Mal Consequently, he came to Madinah and put the matter before Hadrat 'Umar, who decided that it should be sold and the price deposited in the Bait-al-Mal. From this it becomes clear that ghanimah are only those transferable properties which are taken by the soldiers during the war. After the war is over, the transferable properties also, like the nontransferable properties, become fai. Imam Abu 'Ubaid relates this event and says: "The properties that arc seized from the enemy by the use of force, when the war is still in progress, are ghanimah and what is taken after the war is over, when the territory has become Dar al-Islam (abode of Islam), is fai, which should be reserved for the common people of the dar al-Islam; the law of the one-fifth (khums) will not be applicable to it. " (Kitab al-Amwal p. 254).
After defining ghanimah thus, the rest of the properties, wealth and lands, which pass from the disbelievers' ownership to the Muslims may be divided into two main kinds first those which are taken as a result of actual fighting fanwatan in Fiqh terminology); second, those which are taken by the Muslims as a result of the peace terms whether peace is concluded because of the pressure of the military power of the Muslims, or their dread and awe, and in this are also included all those properties which pass into the Muslims' ownership in every other way than as a result of actual fighting The differences that have arisen among the jurists of Islam have been only concerning the first kind of the properties in order to determine their correct legal position, for they do not come under 'those upon which you have not rushed your horses and camels." As regards the second kind of the properties, all agree that they are fai, for the Qur'an has explicitly laid down the injunction about them. Below we shall discuss in detail the legal position of the first kind of the properties.  

Yusuf Ali  Explanation: Neither cavalry nor troops mounted on camels were employed in the siege. In fact the enemy surrendered at the first onset. See lix. 2.

Allah accomplishes His purpose in various ways, according to Ms wise Will and Plan. In some cases a fight is necessary. In some cases the godly attain their objective and overawe the forces of evil without actual fighting. 

Muhammad Asad Explanation: I.e., "you did not have to fight for it, since the enemy surrendered without giving battle". The term fay' (a noun derived from the verb fa'a, "he returned [something]" or "turned [it] over") is applied in the Qur'an and the Traditions exclusively to war-gains - whether consisting of lands, or tribute, or indemnities - which are obtained, as a condition of peace, from an enemy who has laid down arms before actual fighting has taken place (Taj al-'Arus).

Javed Ahmad Ghamidi Explanation:  Read this in conjucntion with verse 7 below.

Use of the word “returned” is very meaningful here. What is meant is that it was God’s wealth which these wrongdoers had usurped. By taking it back, He actually returned it to its real owners.

This is a mention of dominance which as per the established practice of God is necessarily given to each of His messengers. Most of the wars fought in the times of the Prophet (sws) were a manifestation of this established practice of God and the status of those who fought them was merely tools and means of God. It was at the behest of God that these people waged these wars and with the direct help of His angels ended up victorious. It was for this very reason that Muslims did not have any share in the booty obtained from these wars. However, before this attack on the Banu Nadir, when Muslims met the armies of their opponents at Badr, they had to wage a proper war against them. They arranged for the provisions of the journey and also arranged for other war requirements like armour, camels and horses. So after keeping a fifth of the war booty for collective needs, the rest was distributed among the soldiers. In the attack against the Banu Nadir, no such thing happened, and the Jews vacated their area after being struck by the awe of God and His Messenger. So there was no need that the fighters be given a share. However, the Hypocrites because of their greed were not willing to accept this decision and objected to it. The verse under discussion answers this objection.

After explaining the true status of this wealth, the Qur’an has specified that it has been reserved for the collective purposes of the state and religion and for the poor and needy: none of it would be given to the soldiers. After this, these heads are explained.

First and foremost, the share of the Almighty is stated. God Almighty is above all needs and does not need anything. His share is actually reserved for the requirements of His religion. Consequently, under this head, wealth will be expended on fulfilling such needs as helping the cause of Islam at the state level as an obligation. This includes measures that protect and promote it.

The second share stated is that of the Prophet (sws). Besides carrying out his duties as a Messenger, he was also the head of the Islamic state and as such spent every moment of his life in discharging them. To earn a livelihood while discharging these duties was not possible for him. In these circumstances, it was necessary that he be granted a share in the spoils of war. Of course, the nature of this share was such that it was not given to him in his personal capacity so that it may be distributed among his heirs after him. Consequently, after his death, this share was expended by the state on his behalf and in his prophetic capacity to fulfill the collective needs of the Muslims.

The third share stated is that of the near relatives. Obviously, by these are meant those relatives who were dependent on the Prophet (sws) for their livelihood and about the fulfilment of whose needs the Prophet (sws) considered himself to be morally responsible. He was a father to all Muslims. Consequently, this responsibility too, in accordance with the dictates of both the shari‘ahand social conventions, was transferred to the state after the Prophet (sws) and his kin remained the recipients of this share as long as they lived.

The fourth share is that of the poor, the orphans and the wayfarers. While stating this share, the particle ل (lam) is not repeated in this verse. This particle is appended to all the three shares stated before. This fourth category of shares is actually mentioned under the third stated share of the near relatives. The reason is to honour the recipients of this category as if they are also the near relatives of the Prophet (sws). This head needs no explanation. A society which is not sensitive to the requirements of these sections, and a society in which the orphans are subjected to misery and in which there is no one to take care of the wayfarers cannot in any way be given the noble name of an Islamic society.

This is a statement of the reason why instead of distributing this wealth among warriors and in this way consigning it to private ownership it has been reserved for the collective needs of the state and religion and for looking after the poor and needy of the nation: it is stated that this was necessary so that wealth should not get concentrated among the rich. From this statement, the Qur’an has guided every Muslim state that if wealth is given in the private ownership of the poor or the rich, it will end up circulating among the rich. Hence, it is necessary that wealth and assets which are not in the ownership of an individual or cannot be in his ownership should remain in the ownership of the state so that besides fulfilling some other needs of the state through them they are directed to those sectors of the society who, because of their natural disabilities and lack of resources, are dependent on the help of others.

This warning and admonition shows that the explanation offered earlier was in response to the objections raised by the Hypocrites. This is because if the question was merely to seek information about the issue at hand and had been posed by sincere people, then there was no need for this warning and admonition.

This is a delineation of a specific expenditure head for this wealth. This head was created because of the circumstances of the time and needed equal attention of all the Muslims: the immigrants which were coming to Madinah needed to be helped and had left their assets and possessions merely trusting God disregarding from where they will eat and have shelter.

مَاۤ اَفَآءَ اللّٰهُ عَلٰى رَسُوۡلِهٖ مِنۡ اَهۡلِ الۡقُرٰى فَلِلّٰهِ وَلِلرَّسُوۡلِ وَلِذِى الۡقُرۡبٰى وَالۡيَتٰمٰى وَالۡمَسٰكِيۡنِ وَابۡنِ السَّبِيۡلِۙ كَىۡ لَا يَكُوۡنَ دُوۡلَةًۢ بَيۡنَ الۡاَغۡنِيَآءِ مِنۡكُمۡ​ ؕ وَمَاۤ اٰتٰٮكُمُ الرَّسُوۡلُ فَخُذُوْهُ وَ مَا َنَهٰٮكُمۡ عَنۡهُ فَانْتَهُوۡا​ ۚ وَاتَّقُوا اللّٰهَ ​ؕ اِنَّ اللّٰهَ شَدِيۡدُ الۡعِقَابِ​ۘ‏ 
( 7 )   And what Allah restored to His Messenger from the people of the towns - it is for Allah and for the Messenger and for [his] near relatives and orphans and the [stranded] traveler - so that it will not be a perpetual distribution among the rich from among you. And whatever the Messenger has given you - take; and what he has forbidden you - refrain from. And fear Allah; indeed, Allah is severe in penalty.
In the preceding verse what was pointed out was why these properties should not be distributed among the fighting army like the spoils, and why the legal injunction concerning them is different from that concerning the spoils Now in this verse it is being stated as to who are entitled to have a share in these properties.
The first share in these is of Allah and His Messenger. The detail of how the Holy Prophet (upon whom be Allah's peace) acted on this injunction has been related by Malik bin Aus bin al-Hadathan on the authority of Hadrat 'Umar (may Allah be pleased with him), thus: The Holy Prophet used to take from it necessary expenses for himself and his family and the rest he used to spend on arranging arms and conveyances for Jihad. (Bukhari Muslim, Musnad Ahmad, Da 'ud, Tirmadhi Nasa i and others). After the passing away of the Holy Prophet this share was transferred to the Public Treasury of the Muslims so that it is spent in the service of the mission which Allah had entrusted to His Messenger. Imam Shafa' i is reported to have expressed the opinion that the share which was specifically meant for the Holy Prophet's person (upon whom be Allah's peace), is for his caliph after him, for the Holy Prophet was entitled to it on the basis of his office of leadership and not on the basis of the office of Apostleship. But the view of the. majority of the Shafe'i jurists in this matter is the same as of the other jurists, viz. that this share now is reserved for the religious and collective welfare of the Muslims, and not for any particular. person.
The second share is of the kinsfolk, and this implies the kinsfolk of the Holy Prophet (upon whom be Allah's peace), i.e. the Bani Hashim and the Bani al-Muttalib. This share was set aside so that, besides meeting his own and his family's requirements, the Holy Prophet could also fulfill his obligations towards those of his relatives who stood in need of his help, or whom he felt like helping. ,After the death of the Holy Prophet (upon whom be Allah's peace) this ceased to be a separate and independent source, because like the right; of the orphans and the wayfarers and the indigent among the Muslims, looking after the rights of the needy among the Bani Hashim and the Bani al-Muttalib also became the responsibility of the Public Treasury. However, they were treated as superior to others in so far as they had no share in the zakat. Hadrat 'Abdullah bin 'Abbas has related that in the time of Hadrat Abu Bakr and 'Umar and 'Uthman (may Allah be pleased with them), the first two shares were dropped and only the remaining three shares (i.e. those for the orphans and the indigent and the wayfarers) were kept as of those entitled to fai Then Hadrat `Ali (may Allah be pleased with him) also acted on the same in his time, Muhammad bin Ishaq has related on the authority of Imam Muhammad Baqir that although Hadrat 'Ali's personal opinion was the same as of the people of his house (that this share should be given to the relatives of the Holy Prophet), he did not think that he should act against the practice of Abu Bakr and `Umar. Hasan bin Muhammad bin Hanafiyah says that after the Holy Prophet a difference of opinion arose about these two shares (i.e. the share of the Holy Prophet and the share of his relatives). Some people said that the first share should go to the Holy Prophet's caliph, some said that the second share should go to the relatives of the Holy Prophet, and still others said that the second share should be given to the relatives of the caliph. At last, a consensus was reached that both the shares be spent on the requirements of Jihad 'Ata' bin Sa'ib says that Hadrat 'Umar bin 'Abdul `Aziz in his time had started sending the share of the Holy Prophet and the share of the relatives to the Bani Hashim. The opinion of Imam Abu Hanifah and of most of the Hanafi jurists is that in this matter the same practice is cornet as was., being followed in the time of the righteous Caliphs. (Abu Yusuf, Kitab al-Kharaj pp. 19-21). Imam Share'i's opinion is that both the rich and the needy from among the people whose being descended from the Bani Hashim and the Bani al-Muttalib is confirmed, or is well known, can be given shares from fai. (Mughni al-Muhtaj). The Hanafis say that only their needy people can be helped from this; however, their right to this is greater than that of others. (Ruh al-Ma'ani). According to Imam Malik, there is no restriction on the government in this matter. It can spend on any head that it deems fit and proper, but the better course is that it should give preference to the people of the Holy Prophet's house. (Hashiyah ad-Dusuqi ala-sh-Sharh-al-Kabir).
About the remaining three shares there is no dispute among the jurists. However, the difference between Imam Shafe'i and the other Imams is that according to Imam Shafe'i the total properties of fai are to be divided into five equal parts one part of which is to be spent on the above-mentioned heads in such a way that one-fifth of it is spent on the common benefits of the Muslims, one-fifth on the Bani Hashim and the Bani al-Muttalib, one-fifth on the orphans, one-fifth on the indigent and one-fifth on the wayfarers. However, Imam Malik, Imam Abu Hanifah and Imam Ahmad do not concur with this division. Their opinion is that the whole of fai is for the welfare and common benefit of the Muslims. (Mughni al-Muhtaj).
" so that it may not merely circulate between the rich among you " This is one of the most important verses of the Qur'an, which lays down the basic principle of the economic policy of the Islamic community and government. Wealth should circulate among the whole community and not only among the rich lest the rich should go on becoming richer day by day and the poor poorer. This policy has not merely been enunciated in the Qur'an, but for the same objective the Qur'an has forbidden interest, made the zakat obligatory, enjoined that khums (one-fifth) be deducted from the booty, exhorted the Muslims to practice voluntary charity, has proposed such forms of different kinds of atonements that the flow of wealth is turned towards the poor classes of society, and has made such a law of inheritance that the wealth left by every deceased person spreads among the largest circle of the people. Apart from this, stinginess has been condemned and generosity commended as a noble moral quality, the well-to-do people have been told that in their wealth there is a definite share of the beggar and the indigent, which they must discharge not as charity but as the right of the concerned people, and the law enjoined in respect of a major source of revenue of the Islamic government (i.e. far) is that its one portion must necessarily be spent on supporting the poor classes of society. In this connection, it should also be borne in mind that there are two main sources of the revenue of the Islamic government: zakat and fai. The zakat is charged from the Muslims on their total extra capital, cattle, wealth, trade goods and agricultural produce, which is over and above the minimum exemption limit (nisab), and most of it is reserved for the poor. And fai comprises all the revenues including jizyah and taxes which are received from the non-Muslims; a major part of these also is set aside for the poor, This gives a clear hint to the effect that an Islamic government should manage its revenues and expenditure and the financial and economic affairs of the country on the whole in such a manner that the wealthy and influential people are not allowed to have their monopoly over the means and resources of wealth, and the flow of wealth is neither turned from the poor to the rich nor it should remain circulating only among the rich.  

" So accept whatever the Messenger gives you, and refrain from whatever he forbids you. And fear Allah: verily Allah is Most Stern in retribution " In view of the context the verse means: "Accept without question whatever decision the Holy Prophet (upon whom be Allah's peace) gives about the management of the properties of the Bani an-Nadir, and likewise about the distribution of fai properties and goods afterwards. One should take whatever the Prophet gives him, and the one whom he does not give anything, should neither protest nor demand it But since the words of the Command arc general, its application is not restricted to the distribution of the Jai properties and goods only, but its intention is that in all matters the Muslims should obey the Holy Prophet (upon whom be Allah's peace). This intention of the Command becomes all the more clear when we consider that as against "whatever the Messenger gives you" the words used are "whatever he forbids you" and not "what. ever he does not give you. " If the object of the Command were restricted to call obedience to the distribution offal properties and goods .only, then as against "whatever he gives you" the words should have been "whatever he does not give you. " The use of the forbidding or restraining words in this context by itself shows that the object of the Command is to enjoin obedience to the Holy Prophet in whatever he commands and forbids. The same thing has been stated by the Holy Prophet (upon whom be Allah's peace) himself. According to Hadrat Abu Hurairah he said: "When I command you to do a thing, do it as far as you can; and when I forbid you to do a thing, restrain from it." (Bukhari, Muslim). About Hadrat `Abdullah bin Mas'ud it has been related that once during a speech he said: "Allah has cursed the woman who practices such and such a fashion." Thereupon a woman approached him and asked, "Where from have you derived this thing? For I have not seen such a thing anywhere in the Book of Allah." Hadrat `Abdullah replied, "Had you studied the Book of Allah, you would certainly have found it therein. Have you not read the verse: Ma ata-kum ar-Rasulu fa-khudu hu wa ma naha-kum `anhu fantahu: "Take whatever the Messenger gives you, and refrain from whatever he forbids you. " When she said that she had read this verse, Hadrat `Abdullah said: "So the Holy Prophet (upon whom be Allah's peace) has forbidden this act, and has given the news that Allah has cursed the women who practice it. " The woman agreed that she had understood the Command. (Bukhari Muslim, Musnad Ahmad, Musnad Ibn abi Hatim,). 

Yusuf Ali  Explanation: The Jews had originally come from outside Arabia, and seized on the land near Madinah. They refused to adapt themselves to the people of Arabia, and were in fact a thorn in the side of the genuine Arabs of Madinah. Their dispossession is therefore a restoration of the land to its original people. But the word "Fai" is here understood in a technical sense, as meaning property abandoned by the enemy or taken from him without a formal war. In that sense it is distinguished from "Anfal," or spoils, taken after actual fighting, about which see viii. 1 and 41.

"The people of the townships": the townships were the Jewish settlements round Madinah, of the Banu Nadhir, and possibly of other tribes. Cf. the "townships" mentioned in lix. 14 below. The reference cannot be to the Wadi-ul-Qura (Valley of Towns), now Madain Salih, which was subjugated after Khaibar and Fadak in A.H. 7, unless this verse is later than the rest of the Sara.

"Belongs to Allah": ie., to Allah's Cause; and the beneficiaries are further detailed. No shares are fixed; they depend upon circumstances, and are left to the judgement of the Leader. Compare a similar list of those entitized to Charity, in ii. 177, but the two fists refer to different circumstances and have different beneficiaries in addition to the portion common to both.

Muhammad Asad Explanation: " Whatever [spoils taken] from the people of those villages God has turned over to His Apostle [all of it] belongs to God and the Apostle " Sc., and not to individual Muslim warriors. As so often in the Qur'an, the expression "God and the Apostle" is here a metonym for the Islamic cause, resp. for a government that rules in accordance with the laws of the Qur'an and the teachings of the Prophet.

" and the near of kin [of deceased believers], and the orphans, and the needy, and the wayfarer " Cf. 8:41 , which relates to booty acquired in actual warfare, out of which only one-fifth is to be reserved for the above five categories (see note [41] on 8:41 ). In distinction from all such booty, the gains obtained through fay' are to be utilized in their entirety under these five headings. As regards the term ibn as-sabil ("wayfarer"). [The expression ibn as-sabil (lit., "son of the road") denotes any person who is far from his home, and especially one who, because of this circumstance, does not have sufficient means of livelihood at his disposal (cf. Lane IV, 1302). In its wider sense it describes a person who, for any reason whatsoever, is unable to return home either temporarily or permanently: for instance, a political exile or refugee.]

" Hence, accept [willingly] whatever the Apostle " Respectively, in later times, the head of an Islamic state, who has to decide - in the light of the exigencies - how the share of "God and His Apostle" is to be utilized for the common weal.

لِلۡفُقَرَآءِ الۡمُهٰجِرِيۡنَ الَّذِيۡنَ اُخۡرِجُوۡا مِنۡ دِيَارِهِمۡ وَاَمۡوَالِهِمۡ يَبۡتَغُوۡنَ فَضۡلًا مِّنَ اللّٰهِ وَرِضۡوَانًا وَّيَنۡصُرُوۡنَ اللّٰهَ وَرَسُوۡلَهٗ​ؕ اُولٰٓـئِكَ هُمُ الصّٰدِقُوۡنَ​ۚ‏ 
( 8 )   For the poor emigrants who were expelled from their homes and their properties, seeking bounty from Allah and [His] approval and supporting Allah and His Messenger, [there is also a share]. Those are the truthful.
" It also belongs to the poor Emigrants who have been driven out of their homes and their possessions " This implies those people who at `that time had been expelled from Makkah and other parts of Arabia only because they had embraced Islam. Before the conquest of the territory of the Ban; an-Nadir these emigrants had no permanent means of sustenance. Therefore. it was commanded that in the properties which were then taken, and in the fai properties which are taken in future there is also a share of these people along with the common poor people and the orphans and the wayfarers. With these properties all such people should be helped, who are forced to emigrate for the cause of Allah and His Messenger to the abode of Islam. Accordingly, the Holy Prophet (upon whom be Allah's peace) distributed a part of the properties taken from the Bani an-Nadir among the Emigrants and the oases which the Ansar had set aside for the support and maintenance of their emigrant brothers were returned to them. But it is not correct to think that the Emigrants had this share in the fai only at that time. In fact, the intention of the verse is to point out that till Resurrection it is the duty of the Islamic government of the country to settle the people who are exiled and compelled to take refuge in it because of being Muslims and to enable them to stand on their feet economically; and it should spend on this head also from the fai properties besides the zakat funds.  

Yusuf Ali  Explanation: The Muhajir are those who forsook their homes and property in Makkah in order to assist the holy Prophet in his migration to Madinah (Hijrah). Their devotion and sincerity were proved beyond doubt by their self-denial, and they were now to be rewarded.

وَالَّذِيۡنَ تَبَوَّؤُ الدَّارَ وَالۡاِيۡمَانَ مِنۡ قَبۡلِهِمۡ يُحِبُّوۡنَ مَنۡ هَاجَرَ اِلَيۡهِمۡ وَلَا يَجِدُوۡنَ فِىۡ صُدُوۡرِهِمۡ حَاجَةً مِّمَّاۤ اُوۡتُوۡا وَيُـؤۡثِرُوۡنَ عَلٰٓى اَنۡفُسِهِمۡ وَلَوۡ كَانَ بِهِمۡ خَصَاصَةٌ ؕ وَمَنۡ يُّوۡقَ شُحَّ نَـفۡسِهٖ فَاُولٰٓـئِكَ هُمُ الۡمُفۡلِحُوۡنَ​ۚ‏ 
( 9 )   And [also for] those who were settled in al-Madinah and [adopted] the faith before them. They love those who emigrated to them and find not any want in their breasts of what the emigrants were given but give [them] preference over themselves, even though they are in privation. And whoever is protected from the stinginess of his soul - it is those who will be the successful.
" It also belongs to those who were already settled in this abode (of Hijrah) " This implies the Ansar. In other words, not only arc the Emigrants entitled to fai but those Muslims also are entitled to receive their share from it, who were already living in the abode of Islam (Madinah). 

" having come to faith before the (arrival of the) Muhajirun (Emigrants).They love those who have migrated to them and do not covet what has been given them; they even prefer them above themselves though poverty be their own lot " This is in praise of the Ansar, the Muslims of Madinah. When the Emigrants came from Makkah and other places to their city, they offered their gardens and oases to the Holy Prophet (upon whom be Allah's peace) with the request that he distribute them among their emigrant brethren-in-faith. The Holy Prophet said: "These people do not know gardening: they have come from a region where there are no gardens. Could it not be that you (the Ansar) continue to work in the gardens and oases and make the Emigrants partners in the produce? The Ansar submitted: `We have heard and obeyed'." (Bukhari, Ibn Jarir). Thereupon the Emigrants said: "We have never seen any people so self-sacrificing as the Ansar, for they would work and labour and make us partners in the produce. We think they would thus be entitled to all spiritual rewards. The Holy Prophet (upon whom be Allah's peace) said: "Nay, as long as you would praise them and pray for their well-being, you also would get your rewards. " (Musnad Ahmad). Then, when the territory of the Bani an-Nadir was taken, the Holy Prophet made this proposal to the Ansar: "Now one way of managing it is that your properties and the gardens and the oases left by the Jews be combined together and then the whole distributed among you and the Emigrants." the second way is that you take back your properties, and the lands vacated by the Jews be distributed among the Emigrants. " The Ansar said: "Sir, you may please distribute these evacuee properties among the Emigrants and may give them of our properties also as you please. " At this Hadrat Abu Bakr cried out: "May Allah reward you, O assembly of the Ansar, with the best of everything!" (Yahya bin Adam. Baladhuri). Thus, with the willing consent of the Ansar the properties left by the Jews were distributed only among the Emigrants, and from among the Ansar only Hadrat Abu Dujanah, Hadrat Sahl bin Hunaif and (according to some) Hadrat Harith bin as-Simmah were given shares, for they were poor people. (Baladhuri. Ibn Hisham Ruh al-Ma ani. The same self-sacrificing spirit was shown by the Ansar when the territory of Bahrain was annexed to the Islamic State. The Holy Prophet (upon whom be Allah's peace) wished that the conquered lands of that territory be given to the Ansar, but they submitted: "We would not take any share from it unless a similar share was given to ow emigrant brothers." (Yahya bin Adam). Allah has praised the Ansar for this-very spirit of self-sacrifice.

" And whosoever are preserved from their own greed, such are the ones that will prosper " The word used here means "are saved" and not "were safe", for without Allah's help and succor no one can attain to the wealth of the heart (liberal-mindedness) by his own power and effort. This is a blessing of God, which one can attain only by God's bounty and grace The word shuhh is used for stinginess and miserliness in Arabic. But when this word is attributed to the self of matt it becomes synonymous with narrow-mindedness, niggardliness, meanspiritedness and small-heartedness, and not mete stinginess: it is rather the root cause of stinginess itself. Because of this very quality man avoids acknowledging even the good qualities of another, not to speak of recognizing his rights and discharging them. He wants that he alone should gather up everything in the world, and no one else should have anything of it. He never feels content with his own right. but usurps the rights of others, or at least wants to have for himself all that is good in the world and should not leave anything for others. On this very basis one's being saved from this evil has been described in the Qur'an as a guarantee for success. The Holy Prophet (upon whom be Allah's peace) has counted it among the most evil qualities of man which are the root cause of corruption and mischief. Hadrat Jabir bin `Abdullah has reported that the Holy Prophet said: "Avoid shuhh for it was shuhh which ruined the people before you. It incited them to shed each other's blood and make the sacred and forbidden things of others lawful for themselves. " (Muslim, Musnad Ahmad, Baihaqi, Bukhari in Al-Adab). The tradition of Hadrat 'Abdullah bin 'Umar contains the following words: "It led them to commit wickedness and they committed it; it commanded them to commit sins and they committed sin; it urged them to break off all connections with the kindred and they broke off all connections with them. " (Musnad Ahmad, Abu De ud Nasa i). Hadrat Abu Hurairah has reported that the Holy Prophet said. "Faith and shuhh of the self cannot combine in one and the same heart. " (Ibn Abi Shaibah, Nasa '% Baihaqi in Shu ab al-Iman, Hakim). Hadrat Abu Sa'id Khudri has stated that the Holy Prophet said: "Two of the qualities are such that they cannot combine in a Muslim: stinginess and misbehaviour." (Abu Da'ud. Tirmidhi Bukhari in AI-Adab)- It is as a result of t us very teaching of Islam that, apart from individuals, the Muslim people as a nation are still the most generous and liberal. minded people in the world. There are millions and millions of Muslims living side by side with those non-Muslim people from among whom they sprung who have become proverbial for their narrow-mindedness and miserliness. The clear distinction existing between the two peoples in respect of liberal-mindedness and miserliness cannot be explained in any other way than that it is the moral teaching of Islam that has made the Muslims so large-hearted and liberal-minded.  

Yusuf Ali  Explanation: This refers to the Ansar (the Helpers), the people of Madinah who accepted Islam when it was persecuted in Makkah, and who invited the holy Prophet to join them and become their Leader in Madinah. The Hijrat was possible because of their goodwill and their generous hospitality. They entertained the Prophet and all the refugees (Muhajirs) who came with him. The most remarkable ties of full brotherhood were established between individual members of the one group and the other. Until the Ummat got its own resources, the Helpers regularly gave and the Refugees regularly received. The Helpers counted it a privilege to entertain the Refugees, and even the poor vied with the rich in their spirit of self-sacrifice. When the confiscated land and property of the Banu Nadhir was divided, and the major portion was assigned to the refugees, there was not the least jealousy on the part of the Helpers. They rejoiced in the good fortune of their brethren. And incidentally they were themselves relieved of anxiety and responsibility on their behalf.

Muhammad Asad Explanation: " .. but rather give them preference over themselves, even though poverty be their own lot" This relates, in the first instance, to the historical ansar ("helpers") of Medina, who had embraced Islam before the Prophet's and his Meccan followers' coming to them, and who received the refugees with utmost generosity, sharing with them like brethren their own dwellings and all their possessions. In a wider sense, the above refers also to all true believers, at all times, who live in freedom and security within the realm of Islam, and are prepared to receive with open arms anyone who is compelled to leave his homeland in order to be able to live in accordance with the dictates of his faith.

" for, such as from their own covetousness are saved - it is they, they that shall attain to a happy state! " Thus, greed, niggardliness and covetousness are pointed out here as the main obstacles to man's attaining to a happy state in this world and in the hereafter (cf. surah {102}).

Javed Ahmad Ghamidi Explanation: This refers to the Ansar and Muhajirun (immigrants) who had come to Madinah in the very beginning, The actual words used for them are: وَ الَّذِیۡنَ تَبَوَّؤُ الدَّارَ وَ الۡاِیۡمَانَ. What sort of an expression is this? 

Imam Amin Ahsan Islahi has explained it. He writes: … [This] expression is similar to عَلّفته تبناء و ماء or زججن الحواجب والعيونا or to قلّدني سيفًا و رمحًا. In such expressions, a verb which is appropriate for the second object is suppressed and this suppression can be understood from intrinsic indications. Consequently, in each of the above mentioned expressions, a verb is suppressed. Similarly, in the Qur’anic expression under discussion a verb which is appropriate for the word الۡاِیۡمَان is suppressed. If a verb such as اَحْكَمُوْا is considered to be suppressed, then the whole expression would be:وَ الَّذِیۡنَ تَبَوَّؤُ الدَّارَ وَ اَحْكَمُوا الۡاِیۡمَانَ (those who already have a place of residence and have also firmly rooted their faith). (Amin Ahsan Islahi, Tadabbur-i Qur’an, vol. 8, 294)

This verse puts to shame the Hypocrites whose objection was responded to earlier: true believers are sympathetic, content, generous and altruistic. The purpose is to make the Hypocrites realize their shameful selfishness.

وَالَّذِيۡنَ جَآءُوۡ مِنۡۢ بَعۡدِهِمۡ يَقُوۡلُوۡنَ رَبَّنَا اغۡفِرۡ لَـنَا وَلِاِخۡوَانِنَا الَّذِيۡنَ سَبَقُوۡنَا بِالۡاِيۡمَانِ وَلَا تَجۡعَلۡ فِىۡ قُلُوۡبِنَا غِلًّا لِّلَّذِيۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡا رَبَّنَاۤ اِنَّكَ رَءُوۡفٌ رَّحِيۡمٌ‏ 
( 10 )   And [there is a share for] those who came after them, saying, "Our Lord, forgive us and our brothers who preceded us in faith and put not in our hearts [any] resentment toward those who have believed. Our Lord, indeed You are Kind and Merciful."
" (And it also belongs to) those who came after them " In the injunctions laid down up to here, it has been ruled that; in the fai properties there are the rights of Allah and His Messenger and the Messenger's relatives an the orphans and the indigent and the wayfarers and the Emigrants and the Ansar and of the Muslim generations which will be born till the Day of Resurrection. It is this important legal ruling of the Qur'an in the light of which Hadrat 'Umar(may Allah be pleased with him) introduced the new system in respect of the lands and properties of the conquered territories of 'Iraq, Syria and Egypt and of the possessions of the previous governments and rulers of those countries. When these countries were conquered; some of the distinguished Companions among whom were included prominent men like Hadrat Zubair, Hadrat Bilal, Hadrat 'Abdur Rahman bin 'Auf and Hadrat Salman Farsi, insisted that these should be distributed among the armies who had fought and conquered them. They thought that those properties did not come under "those upon which you have not rushed your horses and camels," but the Muslims had conquered them by rushing their horses and camels on them. Therefore, except for those cities and territories which surnndcred without the war, all the rest of the conquered (ands came under ghanimah for which the legal command is that one fifth of the lands and the people be given to the Public Treasury and the remaining four parts be distributed among the soldiers. But this opinion was not correct on the ground that the Holy Prophet (upon whom be Allah's peace) had not distributed the lands and the people of any territory conquered by fighting in his time after the deduction of one-fifth, like the booty. Two of the most conspicuous precedents of his time were the conquest of Makkah and the conquest of Khaiber. Of these he handed over Makkah intact to its inhabitants. As for Khaiber, according to Hadrat Bushair bin Yasar, he divided it into 36 parts, of which he set aside 18 parts for collective benefits and requirements of the Muslims and distributed the remaining 18 among the army. (Abu Da'ud, Baihaqi, Abi 'Ubaid: Kitab al-Amwal; Yahya bin Adam: Kitab al-Kharj Baladhuri: Futuh al-Buldan; Ibn Human: Fath al-Qadir). This action of the Holy Prophet made it clear that the command in respect of the conquered lands, even if they might have been taken by fighting, is not the same as of the ghanimah otherwise he would never have given the whole of Makkah intact to the people of Makkah, and would have set aside exactly one-half of the properties of Khaiber for the common benefits of the Muslims instead of deducting its one-fifth for the Public Treasury. Thus, what was established on the basis of the Sunnah was: In respect of the territories conquered by fighting the ruler of the Muslims has the authority that he may take any decision that he dreams fit keeping in view the conditions of the time. He can distribute them if he so likes but if a territory has an unusual nature and importance, as Makkah had, he can also treat its inhabitants with favour, as the Holy Prophet treated the people of Makkah.

But as the conquests had not yet become common in the Holy Prophet's time and separate injunctions in respect of the different kinds of conquered territories had not yet become clearly known to the people, so when big countries were annexed to Islam in the tune of Hadrat 'Umar, the Companions were faced with the problem whether the territories conquered by force were in the nature of ghanimah or fat. After the conquest of Egypt Hadrat Zubair demanded: "Distribute this, whole land just as the Holy Prophet had distributed Khaiber. " (Abu 'Ubaid). About the conquered territories of Syria and 'Iraq, Hadrat Bilal insisted: "Distribute aII the lands among the fighting forces just as the spoils are distributed. '(Abu Yusuf, Kitab al-Kharaj On the other hand, Hadrat 'AIi gave this opinion: "Leave these lands in possession of the peasants so that they continue to remain a source of income for the Muslims." (Abu Yusuf, Abu 'Ubaid,). Likewise, the opinion of Hadrat Mu'adh bin Jabal was; "If you distributed these lands, evil consequences would occur. Because of this distribution large properties will pass into the hands of those few people, who have conquered them. Then, when these people pass away and their properties pass on to their heirs and there is left only one woman or only one man from among them, nothing might remain for the future generations to meet their needs and even to meet the expenses of safeguarding the frontiers of the Islamic State. Therefore, you should so settle things that the interests both of the present and of the future generations are equally safeguarded." (Abu `Ubaid, p. 59; Fath al-Bari, vol. vi, p. 138). Hadrat `Umar calculated and found that if the territories of `Iraq were distributed, each individual would receive two or three peasants on the average as his share, (Abu Yusuf. Abu 'Ubaid). Thereupon he arrived at the judicious conclusion that those territories should not be distributed. Thus, the replies that he gave to those who demanded their distribution, were as follows:

“Do you want that for the people who come afterwards there should remain nothing?" (Abu 'Ubaid).

"What will happen of the Muslims who cane afterwards when they find that the land along with its peasants has been distributed and the people have inherited their forefathers? This is not at all just. " (Abu Yusuf)

"What will be left for the Muslims who cant after you? I am afraid if I distribute it, you would fight among yourselves over water. " (Abu Yusuf)

“Had I no thought for those who would come afterwards, I would distribute every territory that I conquered just as the Messenger of AIIah had distributed Khaiber." (Bukhari Muwatta, Abu 'Ubaid),

"Nay: this is the real estate. I will withhold it so that the needs and requirements of the conquering forces and of the common Muslims continue to be met by it." (Abu 'Ubaid).

But the people were not satisfied with these replies, and they started saying that he was being unjust. At last, Hadrat 'Umar convened a meeting of the consultative body of the Companions and put the matter before it. Here are some of the sentences of the speech that he made on this occasion: "I have given you this trouble so that you may join me in shouldering the trust that has been put in me for governing your affairs. I am one of you, and you are the people who affirm the truth today. Everyone of you has the option to agree to or differ from what I say. I do not wish that you should follow my desire. You have the Book of Allah, which states the whole truth. By God, if I have said something which I want to enforce, I have no object in view except the truth. You have heard those who think that I am being unjust to them and want to deprive them of their rights, whereas I seek Allah's refuge that I should commit an injustice. It would be vicious on my part if I withheld from them something which actually belonged to them and gave it to another. But I can see that no other land after the land of the Chosroe is going to fall. Allah has given the properties of the Persians and their lands and their peasants in our possession. I have distributed the booty taken by our armies among them after the deduction of the khums (one fifth), and am thinking of distributing the rest which yet remains. But as for the lands my opinion is that I should not distribute them and their peasants, but should levy revenue on the lands and jizyah on the peasants, which they should always pay, and this should be the fai for the common Muslims and their children and the armies of today and for the generations yet to come. Don't you see that we need the troops who should be appointed to protect these our frontiers? Don't you see that in territories like Syria, AI-Jazirah, Kufah, Basra, Egypt we should station our troops, and they should be regularly for their services? So, if I distribute these lands along with their peasants, how shall we meet these expenses?"

The debate went on for two or three days. Hadrat `Uthman Hadrat 'Ali, Hadrat Talhah, Hadrat `Abdullah bin `Umar and others concurred with Hadrat 'Umar, but nothing could be decided. At last, Hadrat `Umar rose and said: "I have found an argument in the Book of Allah, which is decisive in this matter. Then, he recited these very verses of Surah AI-Hashr from Ma afaa'Allahu to Rabbana innaka Ra uf. ur-Rahim, and argued: "The people of this day only are not entitled to receive a share in these properties bestowed by Allah, but AIlah has joined with them also those people who will come after them. Then, how can it be that we should distribute the fai properties which are meant for all, only among the conquerors and leave nothing for the later generations? Moreover, Allah says: '...so that this wealth does not remain circulating among your rich people only.' But if distribute it among the conquerors, it will remain circulating only among your rich and nothing would be left for others. " This argument satisfied everybody and consensus was reached that all the conquered territories should be declared fai for the common benefits of the Muslims, which should be left with those who work on those lands and they should be put under revenue and jizyah. (Abu Yusuf Kitab al-Kharaj, pp. 23-27, 35; AI-Jassas, Ahkam al-Qur'an).

Accordingly, the real position of the conquered lands that came to be established was that the Muslim people in their collective capacity are their owners; the people who were already working on them would be recognized as cultivators on behalf of the Muslim people; they would continue to pay the prescribed revenue to the Islamic government on those lands, their rights as cultivators would pass from generation to generation as heritage, and they would even be allowed to sill those rights, but they will not be the real owners of the land, but its real owners will be the Muslim community. Imam Abu `Ubaid in his Kitab al-Amwal has stated this legal position, thus:

"Hadrat `Umar left the lands of the territory of `Iraq in the hands of its people; he levied tax on their lands and jizyah per head on the people." (p. 57).

When the head of the Islamic government leaves the lands in the hands of the people of the conquered territories, they would be allowed to pass the lands on as heritage and would also be allowed to sell them. " (P. 84).

In the time of `Umar bin `Abdul `Aziz, Sha'bi was asked: "Is there a treaty with the people of the territory of `Iraq." He replied: "There is no treaty, but when the revenue was accepted from them, it amounted to a treaty with them. " (Abu `Ubaid, p. 49; Abu Yusuf, p. 28).

In the time of Hadrat `Umar, `Utbah bin Furqad purchased a piece of land by the Euphrates. Hadrat `Umar asked him from whom he had purchased the land. He replied that he had purchased it from its owners. Hadrat `Umar said: "Its owners are these people, i. e. the Emigrants and the Ansar. " Thus, `Umar held the opinion that the real owners of those lands were the Muslims. (Abu `Ubaid, p. 74).

Accordingly, the properties of the conquered countries which were declared as the collective property of the Muslims were the following:
  • (1) Those lands and territories which come under the control of the Islamic government in consequence of a peace treaty.
  • (2) The ransom or revenue or jizyah which the people of a territory may have agreed to pay, without fighting, in order to seek refuge from the Muslims,
  • (3) Those lands and properties which the owners might have abandoned and fled.
  • (4) The properties the owners of which were slain and no survivor was left to own them.
  • (5) The lands which were not under any ownership previously.
  • (6) The lands which wen already in the ownership of the people, but were left with their previous owners and they were put under jizyah and revenue,
  • (7) Estates of the previous ruling dynasties.
  • (8) Properties of the previous governments.
(For details, see Bada-i as-Sanai, vol. vii, pp. 116-118; Yahya bin Adam Kitab aI-Kharaj. pp. 22, 64; Mughni al-Muhtaj, vol. iii, p. 93; Hashiyah ad-Dusuqi ala-sh-Sharah al-Kabir, vol. ii, p. 190; Ghayat al-Muntaha, vol. i, pp. 467-471).

Since these properties were declared as fai with the consensus of the Canpanions, the jurists of Islam also have agreed in principle on their being regarded as fai. However, they have differed in certain matters, the details of which arc briefly as follows:
The Hanafis say that as regards the lands of the conquered territories the Islamic government (Imam in juristic terminology has the option that it may distribute them among the forces of conquest after deduction of the khums (onefifth), or may leave them with the former owners and put the owners under jizyah and the lands under revenue. In this case the land will be regarded as a 'legacy for the Muslims. (Badai' as-Sanai AI-Jassas, Ahkam al- Qur'an; Sharah al-Anayah al al-Hedayah; Fath al-Qadir). The same view has `Abdullah bin Mubarak cited for Imam Sufyan Thauri. (Yahya bin Adam; Abu 'Ubaid, Kitab a!-Amwal).
The Malikis say that as soon as the lands have been conquered they automatically become a legacy for- the Muslims. It does not need the Imam's ruling or the willingness of the Muslim soldiers to declare them a legacy. Besides, the well known view among the Malikis is that not only the lands but the houses and buildings of the conquered territories also are, as a matter of fact, a legacy for the Muslims. However, the Islamic government will not charge the rent for them. (Hashiyah ad-Dusuqi)
The Hanbalis agree with the Hanafis that the Imam has the option to distribute the lands among the soldiers or to declare them as a legacy for the Muslims, and with the Malikis that although the houses of the conquered territories are included the legacy, no rent will be levied on them. (GhayatalMuntaha which is a collection of the legal rulings of the Hanbali School of juristic thought and a source book for legal rulings since the 10th century).
The Shafe'i viewpoint is that all the transferable properties of the conquered territory are ghanimah, and all the non-transferable properties (lands, houses, etc.) fai. (Mughni al-Muhtaj).
Some jurists have expressed the opinion the if the Imam wants to declare the lands of the territory taken by fighting as a legacy for the Muslims, he must first obtain the willingness of the conquering forces. For this they cite this argument: Hadrat 'Umar, before the conquest of Iraq, had promised Jarir bin 'Abdullah al-Banali, the people of whose tribe constituted one-fourth of the army, which fought the Battle of Qadisiyah, that they would be given one-fourth of the conquered territory. Thus, they retained this territory for two or three years. Then Hadrat 'Umar said to them: "Had I not been responsible and answerable in the matter of division, I would have left with you whatever has been given to you. But now I see that the people have grown in numbers; therefore, my opinion is that you return it to the common people." Hadrat Jarir acceded to this, and Hadrat 'Umar gave him SO dinars as a prize. (Abu Yusuf, Kitab al-Kharaj; Abu 'Ubaid, Kitab al-Amwal From this they argue that Hadrat 'Umar had decided to declare the conquered territories as a legacy for the Muslims only after obtaining the willingness of the conquerors. But the majority of the jurists do not admit this argument, For in respect of all the conquered territories no such willingness of the conquerors ever was taken. Only in the case of Hadrat Jarir bin 'Abdullah this was done because Hadrat `Umar had made a promise with him prior to any collective decision about the conquered lands. Therefore, he had to obtain his willingness only in order to be free from the obligation of the promise. This cannot be cited as a general law.

Another section of the jurists says that even after declaring the lands as a legacy the government retains the option that it may redistribute the lands among the conquerors. For this they argue from this tradition: Once Hadrat 'AII said to the people in an address: "Had not there been the apprehension that you would fight among yourselves, I would have distributed the suburban lands among you." ( Abu Yusuf, Kitab al-Kharaj; Abu `Ubaid, Kitab al-Amwal). But the majority of jurists do not admit this argument either. They are unanimous that when the people of the conquered territory have once been allowed to retain their lands and put under jizyah and revenue, the decision can never be changed later. As for the tradition attributed to Hadrat 'Ali Abu Bakr al-Jassas has discussed it at length in his Ahkam al-Qur an and proved it to be not authentic. 

" and who pray: “Lord, forgive us and our brethren who have preceded us in faith, and do not put in our hearts any rancour towards those who believe. Lord, You are the Most Tender, the Most Compassionate.” In this verse although the real object is only to pouts out that in fai not only the people of the present generation but .he Muslims of the later periods and their future generations also have a share, yet, besides, the Muslims have also been taught an important moral lesson that they should never have any malice against other Muslims in their hearts, and they should continue to pray for the forgiveness of the Muslims who have gone before them instead of cursing and abusing them. The bond that binds the Muslims together is that of a common Faith. If a person values his Faith as the most important thing in his heart, inevitably he would be a well-wisher of all those people who are his brethren-in faith. He can have ill-will and malice and hatred towards them in his heart only when the value of the Faith decreases in his sight and he starts valuing other things more. Therefore, it is the requirement of Faith that a believer's heart should be free from every trace of malice and hatred against the other believers. In this matter the best lesson is given by a Hadith which Nasa'i has related from Hadrat Anas. According to him, once it so happened that for three days continuously the Holy Prophet (upon whom be Allah's peace) declared in his assembly that a person was going to appear before them who belonged to the dwellers of Paradise, and every time it would be a certain person from among the Ansar. At this Hadrat 'Abdullah bin `Amr bin `As became curious as to what deeds the person concerned performed on the basis of which the Holy Prophet had repeatedly given the good news of his admission to Paradise. Thus, he made an excuse and spent three consecutive nights in his house to see how he performed his worship, but during the night he did not sec any thing unusual. At last, he asked him directly as to what special acts and devotions he performed on the basis of which the Holy Prophet had given the great good news about him. He replied: °You have seen how I perform my worship, but there is one thing which might have carved me this reward: I do not harbor any malice or evil design against any Muslim, nor fuel jealous of him on account of any good that Allah might have bestowed on him."
This does not mean that if a Muslim finds an error in another Muslim's word or deed, he should avoid calling it an error. Faith does not demand this. Rut to describe an error as a mistake on the basis of an argument and to state it to be so in a polite and decent manner is one thing and harbor malice and hatred and resort to invective and abuse quite another. It is wrong if one resorts to this in respect of one's contemporaries, but worse if one resorted to this in respect of the dead people of the past. For the person indulging in such a thing would be a most filthy person for he is not even inclined to forgive the dead. And the worst would be that a person should resort to invective and abuse in respect of those illustrious people who had done full justice to the Holy Prophet's companionship in a period full of extreme tribulations and hardships and had struggled with their lives to spread the light of Islam in the world and enabled us today to be blessed with the Faith. One can hold and opinion if one thinks that such and such party of them was in the right and such and such in the wrong in its viewpoint in the differences that arose between them, and can even express his opinion in a reasonable and decent way, but to resort to exaggeration in support of one party so that the heart is filled with spite and hatred against the other is an evil which no God-fearing person would commit. Those who indulge in such a thing against the clear teaching of the Qur'an, generally present the excuse that the Qur'an forbids to bear malice towards the believers and the ones towards whom they bear the malice were not believers but hypocrites. But this allegation is even worse than the sin in defense of which the excuse is presented. For these very verses of the Qur'an in the context of which Allah has taught the Muslims of the later generations not to bear malice towards the Muslims who have gone before them and to pray for their forgiveness, arc sufficient to refute this allegation. In these verses three groups have been mentioned, one after the other, who are entitled to receive a share in far. the Emigrants, the Ansar and the Muslims coming after them; and the Muslims of the later periods have been enjoined that they should pray for the forgiveness of the Muslims who had embraced the Faith before them. Obviously, in this context those who had embraced the Faith before them could not be any other than the Emigrants and the Ansar. Then Allah in vv. 11-17 of this Surah Al Hashr itself has. also told us who were the hypocrites. This makes it absolutely clear that the hypocrites were the people who had encouraged the Jews on the occasion of the battle of the Bani an-Nadir; as against them, the believers were those who were on the side of the Holy Prophet (upon whom be Allah's peace) in this battle. After this, can a Muslim who has any fear of God in his heart, have the boldness to deny the Faith of the people to whose Faith Allah Himself has borne the testimony
Imam Malik and Imam Ahmed arguing from this verse, have expressed ' the opinion that there is no share in fai for the people who malign the Companions of the Holy Prophet. (Ibn al-Arabi, Ahkam al-Quran; Ghayat al-Muntaha). But the Hanafis and the Shafe'is have not concurred with this, the reason being that Allah while declaring the three groups to be entitled to fai, has praised a conspicuous quality of each group but none of these qualities is a condition which may determine whether a group should or should not be given a share in fai. About the Emigrants it has been said: "They seek Allah's bounty and His goodwill, and are ever ready to succor Allah and His Messenger." This does not mean that an Emigrant who lacks this quality, is not entitled to have a share in fai. About the Ansar it has been said: "They love those who have migrated to them and entertain no desire in their hearts for what is given to them and prefer others about themselves even though they be needy themselves. " This also does not mean that a member of the Amar who has no love for the Emigrants and who is desirous of getting for himself what is being given to them, has no share in fai. Therefore, the quality of the third group that "they pray for the forgiveness of those who embraced the Faith before them and they pray that they should not have any malice in their hearts towards any other believer", is also no condition to make one entitled to fai, but this is in praise of a good quality and an instruction as to what should be the attitude of the believers towards the other believers and especially in respect of those believers who have gone before them.

Yusuf Ali  Explanation: Those that came after them: the immediate meaning would refer to later arrivals in Madinah or later accessions to Islam, compared with the early Muhajirs. But the general meaning would include all future comers into the House of Islam. They pray, not only for themselves, but for all their brethren, and above all, they pray that their hearts may be purified of any desire or tendency to disparage the work or virtues of other Muslims or to feel any jealousy on account of their successes or good fortune.

Javed Ahmad Ghamidi Explanation: The implication is that if the Ansar and the Muhajirun are an embodiment of sacrifice, those who have migrated later give due importance to this sincerity and really love them for this. They are not jealous of the fact that these people have seized the resources of Madinah before them. Hence they pray that their hearts are filled with the love and affection of their brothers and that may Satan not create any malice or envy in them for any of their Muslim brothers.

اَلَمۡ تَرَ اِلَى الَّذِيۡنَ نَافَقُوۡا يَقُوۡلُوۡنَ لِاِخۡوَانِهِمُ الَّذِيۡنَ كَفَرُوۡا مِنۡ اَهۡلِ الۡكِتٰبِ لَـئِنۡ اُخۡرِجۡتُمۡ لَنَخۡرُجَنَّ مَعَكُمۡ وَلَا نُطِيۡعُ فِيۡكُمۡ اَحَدًا اَبَدًاۙ وَّاِنۡ قُوۡتِلۡتُمۡ لَـنَـنۡصُرَنَّكُمۡ ؕ وَاللّٰهُ يَشۡهَدُ اِنَّهُمۡ لَـكٰذِبُوۡنَ‏ 
( 11 )   Have you not considered those who practice hypocrisy, saying to their brothers who have disbelieved among the People of the Scripture, "If you are expelled, we will surely leave with you, and we will not obey, in regard to you, anyone - ever; and if you are fought, we will surely aid you." But Allah testifies that they are liars.
From the style of this whole section (vv. 11-17) it appears that it was revealed at the time when the Holy Prophet (upon who n be Allah's peace) had served a notice on the Bani an-Nadir to leave Madinah within ten days, but had not yet laid siege to their quarters. As has been mentioned about, when the Holy Prophet save the notice to the Bani an-Nadir, 'Abdullah bin Ubayy and other leaders of the hypocrites of Madinah sent them a message to the effect that they would come to their aid with two thousand men, and that the Bani Quraizah and the Bani Ghatafan also would rise in their support; therefore, they should stand firm and should never surrender to the Muslims. For if the Muslims waged a war against hem, they would fight them from their side; and if they expelled hem, they also would go out with them. Thereupon Allah sent own these verses, Thus, chronologically this section is an earlier revelation and the first section a later revelation, when the Bani an-Nadir had actually been driven out of Madinah. But in the Qur'an the order of the two passages has been reversed for the reason that the subject matter of the first section is of greater importance  

Yusuf Ali  Explanation: The Jews of the Banu Nadhir had been assured by the Hypocrites of Madinah of their support to their cause. They had thought that their defection from the Prophet's Cause would so weaken that cause that they would save their friends. But they never intended to undertake any act involving self-sacrifice on their part; if they had helped their Jewish friends, it was not likely that they would have succeeded; and if they had actually gone to the fight; they had neither valour nor fervour to support them, and they would have fled ignominiously before the discipline, earnestness, and Faith of the men of Islam.

For this actually happened. They never stirred a finger for the Jews, and they never intended to do so. And Allah knows all their motives and secrets: cf. xlvii. 26 / notes (reproduced below)
(xlvii. 26) This because they said to those who hate what Allah has revealed "We will obey you in part of (this) matter"; but Allah knows their (inner) secrets. 

They have become so impervious to facts and truths, because, without the courage to oppose Allah's Cause openly, they secretly intrigue with Allah's enemies, and say that they will follow them part of the way, and by remaining partly in the other camp, they will be far more useful as spies and half-hearted doubters than by going over altogether. If they think that this game will be successful, they are mistaken. All the inner secrets and motives of their hearts are known to Allah. 

Muhammad Asad Explanation: " speak to their truth-denying brethren from among the followers of earlier revelation " The Banu 'n-Nadir. From the construction of the next verse it appears that the whole of this passage (verses {11-14}) was revealed before the actual advance of the Muslims against the Nadir strongholds: verses {12-14} might be of a prophetic nature, predicting what was yet to happen (Zamakhshari). Alternatively, the passage may be understood in a wider, timeless sense, applying to the falsity and futility inherent in all "alliances" between, on the one hand, people who openly deny the truth and, on the other, half-hearted waverers who have neither the will to commit themselves to a spiritual proposition nor the moral courage to declare openly their lack of belief. 

Javed Ahmad Ghamidi Explanation: This address is meant to express wonder. 

Imam Amin Ahsan Islahi writes: … The implication is: Look at these people who claim to be believers; on the one hand, they claim to profess faith and on the other hand, are extending ties of friendship with the People of the Book who have rejected the prophethood and message of Muhammad (sws). (Amin Ahsan Islahi, Tadabbur-i Qur’an, vol. 8, 300)

 قُوۡتِلُوۡا لَا يَنۡصُرُوۡنَهُمۡ​ۚ وَلَـئِنۡ نَّصَرُوۡهُمۡ لَيُوَلُّنَّ الۡاَدۡبَارَ ثُمَّ لَا يُنۡصَرُوۡنَ‏ 

( 12 )   If they are expelled, they will not leave with them, and if they are fought, they will not aid them. And [even] if they should aid them, they will surely turn their backs; then [thereafter] they will not be aided. 

Yusuf Ali  Explanation: All hopes founded on iniquity and treachery are vain and illusory. There may be honour among thieves. But there is no honour as between dishonest intriguers, and they are not likely to get any real help from any quarter.

Javed Ahmad Ghamidi Explanation: This refers to the Banu Qurayzah. There were three Jewish tribes who resided in the whereabouts of Madinah: Banu Qaynaqa‘, Banu Nadir and Banu Qurayzah. The Banu Qaynaqa‘ had already been driven out. The fate of the Banu Nadir has been mentioned earlier. After this, only the Banu Qurayzah remained. Thus since these Hypocrites originally belonged to the Jews, they were trying to connive with these brothers of theirs. In the succeeding verses, the Qur’an has exposed them.

The implication of these words uttered by the Hypocrites while addressing the Banu Qurayzah is that whatever Muhammad (sws) or the Muslims say about the Banu Qurayzah, they will not listen to them. The reason why the Hypocrites offered to help the Banu Qurayzah in such an emphatic manner in all probability was that they had made a similar promise to the Banu Nadir earlier as well; however, when the time came, they did not honour it.

This prediction of the Qur’an came true word for word. When after the Battle of the Ditch, the Prophet (sws) laid siege against them, no one came to help them and they were forced to consign their fate to the decision of Sa‘d ibn Mu‘adh (rta). Their woeful fate is mentioned in Surah al-Ahzab.

لَاَنۡتُمۡ اَشَدُّ رَهۡبَةً فِىۡ صُدُوۡرِهِمۡ مِّنَ اللّٰهِ​ؕ ذٰلِكَ بِاَنَّهُمۡ قَوۡمٌ لَّا يَفۡقَهُوۡنَ‏ 
( 13 )   You [believers] are more fearful within their breasts than Allah. That is because they are a people who do not understand.
" Surely they have greater dread for you in their hearts than for Allah."  That is, "The reason why they dare not face you openly in the field is not that they are Muslim: and have fear of God in their hearts and are afraid that despite their claim to the Faith when they come out to help the disbelievers as against the believers, they will be held accountable before God. But what actually restrains them froth facing you is that when they see your profound love and spirit of self-sacrifice and devotion for Islam and the Holy Prophet Muhammad (Upon whom be Allah's peace and blessings) and the great unity and concord in your rattles, they become dispirited. They a now full well that although you are few in number the spirit of martyrdom which has turned each single individual among you into a gallant warrior and the organization which has molded you into a solid body, will crush them also along with the Jews when they c]ash with you in the battlefield. Here one should bear in mind the fact that if a person harbors the fear of another than God in his heart, it is in fact a negation of the fear of God. Obviously. the person who considers one of the dangers as lesser and the other greater, pays no heed to the first but does whatever b e can to safeguard himself against the greater danger."  

"That is because they are a people who are devoid of understanding." A great truth has been expressed in this brief sentence. A person who has sense knows that the real power to be feared is the power of Allah and not the power of men. Therefore, he will avoid every such thing as may call for the punishment of Allah, whether there is any human power to call him to account for it or not, and he will come out to accomplish any duty which Allah has enjoined on him, whether he is opposed and hindered by all the powers of the world. But a man, who has no sense, determines his attitude and conduct in view of the human powers, instead of Allah's power, in all matters of lift, because Allah's power for him is imperceptible and human powers arc perceptible. If he avoids something. he will avoid it, not because of the fear of Allah's punishment for it, but because of a human power, which may be there to take him to task. And if he does something he will do is not because Allah has enjoined it, but because some human power has ordered or approved of it, and will reward hi for it. This very distinction between intelligence and folly, in fact, distinguishes the character and conduct of a believer from that of an unbeliever. 

Yusuf Ali  Explanation: Being Unbelievers they fear you more than they fear Allah, because your valour they see, but in Allah they do not believe.

Muhammad Asad Explanation: Inasmuch as they do not - or, at best, only half-heartedly - believe in God, the tangible, material dangers facing them in this world arouse in them a far greater fear than the thought of His ultimate judgment.

لَا يُقَاتِلُوۡنَكُمۡ جَمِيۡعًا اِلَّا فِىۡ قُرًى مُّحَصَّنَةٍ اَوۡ مِنۡ وَّرَآءِ جُدُرٍؕ بَاۡسُهُمۡ بَيۡنَهُمۡ شَدِيۡدٌ ​ؕ تَحۡسَبُهُمۡ جَمِيۡعًا وَّقُلُوۡبُهُمۡ شَتّٰى​ؕ ذٰلِكَ بِاَنَّهُمۡ قَوۡمٌ لَّا يَعۡقِلُوۡنَ​ۚ‏ 
( 14 )   They will not fight you all except within fortified cities or from behind walls. Their violence among themselves is severe. You think they are together, but their hearts are diverse. That is because they are a people who do not reason.
" You reckon them united while their hearts are divided " This refers to the second weakness of the hypocrites. The first weakness was that they were cowardly: they feared the men instead of fearing God and had no higher aim of lift before them like the believers, which might impel them to fight for it even at the cost of life. And their second weakness was that they had no common tic between them except hypocrisy, which might unite them together into a strong band. The only thing that had brought them together was that they were all feeling highly upset at the flourishing leadership and rulership of Muhammad (upon whom be Allah's peace and blessings). who was an outsider in their city, and at the warm reception and help which their own compatriots the Ansar were giving the Emigrants. Because of this jealousy they wanted them to join hands together and in conspiracy with the enemies of Islam of the surrounding areas should somehow put an end to this alien power and authority. But apart from this negative objective there was no positive common aim to unify them. Each of their chiefs had his own separate band: each craved for his own leadership; no one was sincere to the other; but each bore such jealousy and malice for the other that they could neither forget their mutual enmities nor desist from harming the other fatally even while facing those whom they regarded as their common enemy.

Thus, at the outset, even before the battle against the Bani an-Nadir took place, Allah analyzed the internal state of the hypocrites and informed the Muslims that there was no real danger from their side; therefore, they should not feel alarmed- at the rumors that when they lay siege to the Bani an-Nadir, the leaders of the hypocrites would attack them from the rear with two thousand men, and also bring the Bani Quraizah and the Bani Ghatafan along against them. AII this was empty boasting which would be exposed at the very beginning of the trial. 

Yusuf Ali  Explanation:  They have not sufficient self-confidence or clan to sustain them in a fight except under material advantages or defences. Even if they join forces, they have not sufficient trust in each other to expose themselves to open fighting.

'It may be that they have a strong fighting spirit among themselves, but they have no Cause to fight for and no common objective to achieve. The Makkan Pagans want to keep their own unjust autocracy; the Madinah Hypocrites wish for their own domination in Madinah; and the Jews want their racial superiority established over the Arabs, of whose growing union and power they are jealous.' Their pretended alliance could not stand the strain of either a defeat or a victory. If they had been wise, they would have accepted the Cause of Unity, Faith, and Truth.

Javed Ahmad Ghamidi Explanation: The implication is that they apparently seem united; however, in reality neither are they sincere with one another nor does their friendship with the Quraysh and other tribes of the Idolaters emanate from their heart.

This is a mention of the real reason of their malady. Imam Amin Ahsan Islahi writes: … In other words, instead of facing reality, assessing it seriously and facing it with determination and perseverance, they have become a slave to their desires. And when a people regard its desires instead of sense and reason to be its guide, then it is destroyed in this manner because of conflicting thoughts and ideas. (Amin Ahsan Islahi, Tadabbur-i Qur’an, vol. 8, 303)

كَمَثَلِ الَّذِيۡنَ مِنۡ قَبۡلِهِمۡ قَرِيۡبًا​ ذَاقُوۡا وَبَالَ اَمۡرِهِمۡ​ۚ وَلَهُمۡ عَذَابٌ اَلِيۡمٌ​ۚ‏ 
( 15 )   [Theirs is] like the example of those shortly before them: they tasted the bad consequence of their affair, and they will have a painful punishment.
The allusion is to the disbelievers of the Quraish and the Jewish clan of the Bani Qrainuqa who had been defeated by a handful of ill-equipped Muslims in spite of their larger numbers and superior equipment, due mainly to these weaknesses 

Yusuf Ali  Explanation: The immediate reference was probably to the Jewish goldsmith tribe of the Qainuqa, who were also settled in a fortified township near Madinah. They were also punished and banished for their treachery, about a month after the battle of Badr, in which the Makkan Pagans had suffered a signal defeat, in Shawwal, A.H. 2. The Nadhir evidently did not take that lesson to heart. The general meaning is that we must learn to be on our guard against the consequences of treachery and sin. No fortuitous alliances with other men of iniquity will save us.

Muhammad Asad Explanation: " [To both kinds of your enemies " This interpolation - relating as it does to both the outright deniers of the truth and the hypocrites - is justified by the occurrence of the dual form in verse {17}.

" .. had to taste the evil that came from their own doings " In the first instance, this is apparently an allusion to the fate of the pagan Quraysh at the battle of Badr (Zamakhshari) or, according to some authorities (quoted by Tabari), to the treachery and subsequent expulsion from Medina, in the month of Shawwal, 2 H., of the Jewish tribe of Banu Qaynuqa'. But in a wider perspective - strongly suggested by the next two verses - the meaning is general and not restricted to any particular time or historical occurrence.

كَمَثَلِ الشَّيۡطٰنِ اِذۡ قَالَ لِلۡاِنۡسَانِ اكۡفُرۡ​ۚ فَلَمَّا كَفَرَ قَالَ اِنِّىۡ بَرِىۡٓءٌ مِّنۡكَ اِنِّىۡۤ اَخَافُ اللّٰهَ رَبَّ الۡعٰلَمِيۡنَ‏ 
( 16 )   [The hypocrites are] like the example of Satan when he says to man, "Disbelieve." But when he disbelieves, he says, "Indeed, I am disassociated from you. Indeed, I fear Allah, Lord of the worlds."
That is, "These hypocrites are treating the Bani an-Nadir in much the same way as Satan treats men. Today they are urging them to stand firm and go forth and clash with the Muslims making them believe that they would come to their aid, but when they actually clash with the Muslims, they would renounce their pledges and promises and would never even look back to see their fate. The same way does Satan treat every disbeliever, and a similar treatment had he given to the disbelieving Quraish at Badr, as has been mentioned in Surah al-Anfal: 48 above. First. he incited them with false hopes and brought them out to confront the Muslims, saying: `Today no one can overcome you, for I am with you." But when the two forces met in battle, he took to his heels, saying: "I have nothing to do with you. I see that which you cannot see. Indeed, I fear Allah."

Yusuf Ali  Explanation: An apt simile. Evil tempts man in all sort of ways, and presents seductive promises and alliances to delude him into the belief that he will be saved from the consequences. Satan says, "Deny Allah": which means not merely denial in words, but denial in acts, disobedience of Allah's Law, deviation from the path of rectitude. When the sinner gets well into the mire, Satan says cynically: "How can I help you against Allah? Don't you see I am afraid of Him? All our alliances and understandings were moonshine. You must bear the consequences of your own folly."

فَكَانَ عَاقِبَتَهُمَاۤ اَنَّهُمَا فِى النَّارِ خَالِدَيۡنِ فِيۡهَا​ ؕ وَذٰ لِكَ جَزٰٓؤُا الظّٰلِمِيۡن‏ 
( 17 )   So the outcome for both of them is that they will be in the Fire, abiding eternally therein. And that is the recompense of the wrong-doers.

يٰۤاَيُّهَا الَّذِيۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡا اتَّقُوا اللّٰهَ وَلۡتَـنۡظُرۡ نَـفۡسٌ مَّا قَدَّمَتۡ لِغَدٍ​ ۚ وَاتَّقُوا اللّٰهَ​ؕ اِنَّ اللّٰهَ خَبِيۡرٌۢ بِمَا تَعۡمَلُوۡنَ‏  
( 18 )   O you who have believed, fear Allah. And let every soul look to what it has put forth for tomorrow - and fear Allah. Indeed, Allah is Acquainted with what you do.
It is a rule of the Qur'an that whenever the hypocritical Muslims are taken to task for their hypocrisy, they are given admonition also so that whoever of them has some life left in his conscience, may feel remorse for his conduct and attitude and may make an effort, out of the fear of Allah, to come out of the pit into which his worship of the self has thrown him. This whole section (vv, 18-24) consists of such admonition. 

" fear Allah and let every person look to what he sends forward for the morrow " "For the morrow": for the Hereafter. That is, this whole worldly life is "today", whose "tomorrow" is the Day of Resurrection, which is going to follow it. Adopting this style Allah has, in a wise manner, made man understand the truth that just as that person is highly foolish, who gambles away his all for the enjoyment of today and does not realize whether tomorrow he would be left with anything to eat and a place of shelter or not, so is that person also only working for his own doom, who is too absorbed in making; his world to pay heed to the Hereafter, whereas the Hereafter is to follow this world just as today is to be followed by tomorrow, and there he would find nothing if he has sent nothing ahead for the morrow. Besides, the other wise point here is that every person has been appointed his own censor. Unless a person develops in himself the sense of what is good for him and what is evil, he cannot appreciate whether what he is doing will make his future in the Hereafter or mar it. And when this sense becomes active in himself, he will have to calculate and see for himself whether the way in which he is expending his time, his wealth, his energies and capabilities leads to Heaven or Hell. To do so is in his own interest; for if he does not do so he will ruin his own future itself.

Yusuf Ali  Explanation: The "fear of Allah" is akin to love; for it means the fear of offending Him or doing anything wrong that will forfeit His Good Pleasure. This is Taqwa, which implies self restraint, guarding ourselves from all sin, wrong, and injustice, and the positive doing of good. See ii. 2:
(ii:2) This is the Book; in it is guidance sure without doubt to those who fear Allah. 
Taqwa and the verbs and nouns connected with the root, signify: (1) the fear of God which according to the writer of Proverbs (i.7) in the Old Testament is the beginning of Wisdom; (2) restraint, or guarding one's tongue, hand, and heart from evil; (3) hence righteousness, piety good conduct. All these ideas are implied; in the translation, only one or other of these ideas can be indicated according to the context. See also xivii 17; and ixxiv 56.
The positive side of Taqwa, or "fear of Allah" (see last note) is here emphasised. It is not merely a feeling or an emotion: it is an act, a doing of things which become a preparation and provision for the Hereafter,-the next life, which may be described as "the morrow" in relation to the present Life, which is "to-day". A) The repetition emphasises both sides of Taqwa: "let your soul fear to do wrong and let it do every act of righteousness; for Allah observes both your inner motives and your acts, and in His scheme of things everything will have its due consequences."

Javed Ahmad Ghamidi Explanation: This refers to what he has done for the Day of Judgement. It is referred to by the word “tomorrow.” The purpose is to direct attention to its proximity as well as to its certainty.

The words اِتَّقُوا اللّٰہَ (fear God) are repeated so that the importance of the matter is driven in the minds of the addressees.

وَلَا تَكُوۡنُوۡا كَالَّذِيۡنَ نَسُوا اللّٰهَ فَاَنۡسٰٮهُمۡ اَنۡفُسَهُمۡ​ؕ اُولٰٓـئِكَ هُمُ الۡفٰسِقُوۡنَ‏ 
( 19 )   And be not like those who forgot Allah, so He made them forget themselves. Those are the defiantly disobedient.
That is, forgetfulness of God inevitably leads to forgetfulness of one's own self. When man forgets that he is slave to the Almighty, he will inevitably form a wrong view of his position in the world, and his whole life will go wrong because of this basic error. Likewise, when he forgets that he is slave to nobody except Allah, he does not serve the one whose slave actually he is not. This also is a grave and all-pervading misunderstanding, which corrupts his whole life. Man's real position in the world is that of a slave; he is not free and self-sufficient; and he is slave of only One God, and is no one else's slave beside Him. The person who, in not know this truth, does not in fact know himself. And the person who in spite of knowing this, forgets it at any moment, may commit an act at that very moment, which a disbeliever, or a polytheist or a man forgetful of God only would commit. Man's remaining firm and steadfast on the right path entirely depends on his remembering God at all times. For as soon as he, becomes heedless of Him. he becomes heedless of himself and this very heedlessness turns him into sinfulness. 

Javed Ahmad Ghamidi Explanation: This is a reference to the Jews from whom the Hypocrites received guidance and with whom they would connive to oppose Islam and the Muslims. The words فَاَنۡسٰہُمۡ اَنۡفُسَہُمۡ used for them point to a very important reality. 

Imam Amin Ahsan Islahi has explained it thus: … Those who forget God become indifferent to their own good and evil and to their fate. All value, significance and majesty of life depends on understanding the reality that the Almighty has not given it to us to indulge in a few days of luxury; He has given it to us so that we spend it in obedience to Him and earn the eternal kingdom of heaven. This pinnacle can of course be achieved by someone who always keeps in mind that he has not been given life by chance; on the contrary, it is a blessing of a Gracious being and He has given it with a special purpose. If a person leads his life in accordance with this special purpose, it will be a great eternal reward for him, and if he forgets this, it will automatically become an eternal curse for him.(Amin Ahsan Islahi, Tadabbur-i Qur’an, vol. 8, 308)

لَا يَسۡتَوِىۡۤ اَصۡحٰبُ النَّارِ وَاَصۡحٰبُ الۡجَـنَّةِ​ؕ اَصۡحٰبُ الۡجَـنَّةِ هُمُ الۡفَآئِزُوۡنَ‏ 
( 20 )   Not equal are the companions of the Fire and the companions of Paradise. The companions of Paradise - they are the attainers [of success].

لَوۡ اَنۡزَلۡنَا هٰذَا الۡقُرۡاٰنَ عَلٰى جَبَلٍ لَّرَاَيۡتَهٗ خَاشِعًا مُّتَصَدِّعًا مِّنۡ خَشۡيَةِ اللّٰهِ​ؕ وَتِلۡكَ الۡاَمۡثَالُ نَضۡرِبُهَا لِلنَّاسِ لَعَلَّهُمۡ يَتَفَكَّرُوۡنَ‏ 
( 21 )   If We had sent down this Qur'an upon a mountain, you would have seen it humbled and coming apart from fear of Allah. And these examples We present to the people that perhaps they will give thought.
The parable means that if a huge creation like a mountain had the sense and knowledge that it had been made responsible and accountable, like man, before Allah Almighty, for its deeds, it would have trembled from the fear of it. But how heedless, senseless and thoughtless is the man, who understands the Qur'an, and has known the whole truth through it, yet he is neither seized by any fear not feels worried as to what answer he would make to his God about the responsibilities that have been placed on him. On the contrary when be reads the Qur'an, or hears it read, he remains. go un-moved as if he were a lifeless and senseless stone, which is not supposed to hear and see and understand anything. (For further explanation, see tafsir  of verse 72 of  Surah 33. AI-Ahzab)  

Yusuf Ali  Explanation: There are two ideas associated in men's minds with a mountain: one is its height, and the other that it is rocky, stony, hard, Now comes the metaphor. The Revelation of Allah is so sublime that even the highest mountains humble themselves before it. The Revelation is so powerful and convincing that even the hard rock splits asunder under it. Will man then be so arrogant as to consider himself superior to it, or so hard-hearted as not to be affected by its powerful Message? The answer is "No" for unspoilt man; "Yes" for man when degraded by sin to be the vilest of creatures.

Cf. vii. 143, where, in the story of Moses, the Mount became as dust "when the Lord manifested His Glory". Also cf. xxxiii. 72, where the mountains are mentioned as an emblem of stability, but as refusing to accept the Trust (Amanat) because they felt themselves to be too humble to be equal to such a tremendous Trust.

Javed Ahmad Ghamidi Explanation: This is a very grand and subtle parable through which in the words of Imam Amin Ahsan Islahi an abstract and symbolic thing has been depicted in a tangible and material way.

هُوَ اللّٰهُ الَّذِىۡ لَاۤ اِلٰهَ اِلَّا هُوَ​ ۚ عٰلِمُ الۡغَيۡبِ وَالشَّهَادَةِ​ ۚ هُوَ الرَّحۡمٰنُ الرَّحِيۡمُ‏ 
( 22 )   He is Allah, other than whom there is no deity, Knower of the unseen and the witnessed. He is the Entirely Merciful, the Especially Merciful.
These verses explain what kind of God He is, and what are His attributes, Who has sent this Qur'an to you, Who has placed these responsibilities on you, and before Whom you have to render an account of your deeds in the end. This mention of the Divine attributes immediately after the above theme automatically gives man the feeling that he has not to deal with an ordinary being but with Almighty Allah Who has such and such attributes. Here, one should also understand that although in the Qur'an the attributes of Allah Almighty have been stated in a unique way, which gives a clear concept of the Divine Bing there are two places where the attributes of Allah have been mentioned in a most comprehensive way, in the Verse of the Throne (Al-Baqarah: 255) and in these verses of Surah Al-Hashr. 

" Allah: there is no god but He " That is, He is the One besides Whom none else has the rank, position, attributes and powers of Godhead so that he may be worshiped and served as god.

" the Knower of the unseen and the manifest " That is, He knows whatever is hidden from the creatures as well as whatever is known and visible to them. Nothing of this universe is unknown to Him. He directly knows whatever has happened in the past, whatever exists at present and whatever will happen in the future : He does not stand in need of any means or medium of knowledge. 

" He is the Most Merciful, the Most Compassionate " That is, He alone is the Being Whose mercy is limitless, which covers the whole universe and blesses and benefits everything a it. None else in the world is the bearer of such all-pervading, infinite mercy. The mercy of every other being, characterized by the ability of mercy, is partial and limited, and that quality too is not essentially its own, but bestowed by the Creator for a specific need and purpose. He has created the quality of mercy for some other creature. He has created it in order to make one creature a-means for the development and well-being of the other creature. This by itself is a proof that Allah's Mercy is infinite.

Yusuf Ali  Explanation: Here follows a passage of great sublimity, summing up the attributes of Allah. In this verse, we have the general attributes, which give us the fundamental basis on which we can form some idea of Allah. We start with the proposition that there is nothing else like Him. We think of His Unity; all the varying and conflicting forces in Creation are controlled by Him and look to Him, and we can never get a true idea of Him unless we understand the meaning of Unity. His knowledge extends to everything seen and unseen, present and future, near and far, in being and not in being: in fact these contrasts, which apply to our knowledge, do not apply to Him. His Grace and His Mercy are unbounded: see i. 1, and n. 19; and unless we realise these, we can have no true conception of our position in the working of His Will and Plan.

Javed Ahmad Ghamidi Explanation: The fear of God mentioned earlier is always imbibed in a person after he fully bears in mind His attributes. Thus in these closing verses of the surah, people are reminded of the divine attributes on which all religion and shari‘ah is based. It is only by fully bearing them in mind that a person can save himself from the fate referred to above by the words: when they forgot God, God made them forget themselves.

هُوَ اللّٰهُ الَّذِىۡ لَاۤ اِلٰهَ اِلَّا هُوَ​ۚ اَلۡمَلِكُ الۡقُدُّوۡسُ السَّلٰمُ الۡمُؤۡمِنُ الۡمُهَيۡمِنُ الۡعَزِيۡزُ الۡجَـبَّارُ الۡمُتَكَبِّرُ​ؕ سُبۡحٰنَ اللّٰهِ عَمَّا يُشۡرِكُوۡنَ‏ 
( 23 )   He is Allah, other than whom there is no deity, the Sovereign, the Pure, the Perfection, the Bestower of Faith, the Overseer, the Exalted in Might, the Compeller, the Superior. Exalted is Allah above whatever they associate with Him.
" He is Allah: there is no god but He: the King, "The word used in the original is al-Malik, which means at He alone is the real Sovereign. Moreover, the word al-Malik its general sense also gives the meaning that He is King of the tire universe and not of a particular region or of a specific country. His Sovereignty and rule comprehends the entire universe.

He is Master of everything. Everything submits itself to His command and power and authority, and there is nothing to delimit His Sovereignty. At different places in the Qur'an all aspects of Allah's Sovereignty, have been presented and explained fully.

"Whoever exist in the heavens and the earth are He servants; all arc obedient to Him." (Ar-Burn: 26).

"He administers the affairs of the world from the heavens to the earth. " (As-Sajdah: 5)

"To Him belongs the dominion of the earth and the heavens, and all matters are referred to Him for decision." (AI-Hadid: 5).

"He has no partner in His sovereignty." (Al-Furqan: 2).

"In His hand is the absolute control of everything." (Ya Sin: 83).

"Doer of whatever He wills." (AI-Buruj: 16).

"He is accountable to none for what He does, but all others are accountable (to Him).'" (Al-Anbiyii': 23).

"Allah rules and there is none to reverse His decrees." (Ar-Ra'd: 41).

"The Being Who gives protection while none can give protection against Him." (Al-Mu'min: 88).

"Say: O Allah, Sovereign of the Kingdom, Thou bestows kingdom on whomever Thou wilt, and Thou takes it away from whomever Thou wilt. Thou exalts whomever Thou wilt and Thou abases whomever Thou wilt. AII that is good is in Thy power; indeed Thou hast full power over all things." (Al-i-Imran: 26).

These explanations make it abundantly clear that Allah is not King in some limited or metaphoric sense but He is real King in the most perfect and complete sense of sovereignty. As a matter of fact, if sovereignty in its true sense is at all found somewhere, it is found only in Allah's Kingship. Apart from this, wherever it is claimed to be, whether in the person of a king or dictator, or in a class or group or family, or in sonic nation, he or it possesses no sovereignty at all, for sovereignty is not a gift, which may at one time be granted and at another time withdrawn, which may be in danger of being usurped, the establishment and existence of which may be temporary and temporal, and the sphere of power and authority of which may be circumscribed and restricted by many other conflicting powers.  

" The Holy" Quddus is a superlative. It means that Allah is far exalted that He should have a fault or defect or demerit: He is the purest Being, no evil can be imagined about Him. Here, one should clearly understand that the attribute of holiness is a foremost accompaniment of sovereignty. Man's intellect and nature refuse to believe that a being who is the bearer of sovereignty may be mischievous, ill behaved, ill-natured, who may be characterized with these base qualities from whose power and authority his subjects might be in danger of suffering evil instead of being blessed with good. That is why wherever man thinks sovereignty is centered, he assumes holiness also to be there, even if it is not there, for absolute sovereignty is inconceivable without holiness. But. obviously, there is no real Sovereign except Allah, Who is holy, nor can there be. Whether it is monarchy, or sovereignty of the people, or dictatorship of the socialist system, or some other form of human rule in any case holiness for it is inconceivable. 

" the Giver of peace "The word as-Salam as used in the original means peace and Secure, Allah's being called as-Salam means that He is peace and safety personified. He is far exalted that some calamity or weakness or defect should befall Him, or His Perfection should suffer a decline or blemish.  

" the Giver of security " The word at-Mu min is derived from amn, which means to secure from fear, and Mu'min is one who provides security to others. Allah ha: been called Mn'min in the sense that He provides security to His creatures. His creatures arc secure from the fear that He would ever wrong them, or deprive them of their rights, or allow their rewards to go to waste, or would violate the promises He has made with them. Then, since no object has been mentioned with this subject, but the epithet of al-Mu'min has been used absolutely, it automatically gives the meaning that His security comprehends the entire universe and all that it contains. 

" the Overseer " The word al-Muhaimin has three meanings:
  • (1) The Guardian and Protector;
  • (2) the Observer who sees what everyone does; and
  • (3) the Being Who has taken up the responsibility to fulfill the needs and requirements of the people.
Here also, since the word al-Muhaimin has been used absolutely, and no object has been mentioned of this subject, therefore, it by itself gives the implied meaning that He is guarding and protecting all creatures, is watching the acts and deeds of everyone, and has taken up the responsibility of sustaining and providing for every creature in the universe with its needs and requirements.  

" the Most Mighty " Al-'Aziz: such an Almighty Being against Whom no one may dare raise his head, no one may have the power to resist His decrees, before Whom . everyone may be helpless and powerless.

" the Overpowering " The word al-Jabbar as used in the original is derived from jabr which means setting something right by use of power, reforming something by force. Allah has been called jabbar in the sense that He sets the system of His universe right by the use of power and enforces His will, which is wholly based on wisdom. by force. Moreover, the word jabber also contains the meaning of greatness; and glory. Thus, a palm-tree which is too tall for the people to pluck its fruit is called jabber In Arabic. Likewise, an act which is grand and glorious is called amal jabbar.

" the All-Great " The word al-Mutakabbir has two meanings.
  • (1) The one who is not actually great but poses as great, and
  • (2) the one who is actually great and sets himself up as such.
Whether it is man or Satan, or some other creature, since greatness does not, in actual fact, belong to it, its posing itself as great and claiming superiority over others is, a false claim and a vice. Contrary to this, Allah Almighty is truly Great and greatness actually belongs to Him, and' everything in the universe is low and insignificant as against Him; therefore, His being Great and setting Himself up as Great is no false claim but an actual reality; it is not an evil quality but a virtue and excellence, which no one else has but Allah.

Yusuf Ali  Explanation: This phrase is repeated from the last verse in order to lead us to the contemplation of some other attributes of Allah, after we have realised those which form our fundamental conceptions of Allah. See the preceding and the following note.

How can a translator reproduce the sublimity and the comprehensiveness of the magnificent Arabic words, which mean so much in a single symbol? (1) "The Sovereign" in our human language implies the one undisputed authority which is entitled to give commands and to receive obedience, and which in fact receives obedience; the power which enforces law and justice. (2) Human authority may be misused, but in the title "the Holy One", we postulate a Being free from all stain or evil, and replete with the highest Purity. (3) "Salam" has not only the idea of Peace as opposed to Conflict, but wholeness as opposed to defects: hence our paraphrase "Source of Peace and Perfection". (4) Mu-min, one who entertains Faith, who gives Faith to others, who is never false to the Faith that others place in him: hence our paraphrase "Guardian of Faith". (5) "Preserver of Safety"; guarding all from danger, corruption, loss, etc.; the word is used for the Qur-an in v. 51. These are the attributes of kindness and benevolence: in the next note are described the attributes of power.

See last note. (6) Allah is not only good, but He can carry out His Will. (7) And if anything resists or opposes Him, His Will prevails. (8) For He is Supreme, above all things and creatures. Thus we come back to the Unity with which we began in verse 22.

Such being Allah's attributes of Goodness and Power, how foolish is it of men to worship anything else but Him? Who can approach His glory and goodness?

هُوَ اللّٰهُ الۡخَـالِـقُ الۡبَارِئُ الۡمُصَوِّرُ​ لَـهُ الۡاَسۡمَآءُ الۡحُسۡنٰى​ؕ يُسَبِّحُ لَهٗ مَا فِى السَّمٰوٰتِ وَالۡاَرۡضِ​ۚ وَهُوَ الۡعَزِيۡزُ الۡحَكِيۡمُ‏  
( 24 )   He is Allah, the Creator, the Inventor, the Fashioner; to Him belong the best names. Whatever is in the heavens and earth is exalting Him. And He is the Exalted in Might, the Wise.
" He is Allah, the Planner, "That is, those who regard a creature as an associate in His powers, authority, attributes, or in His Being, in fact, utter a grave falsehood, for Allah is far exalted that anybody or anything should be an associate with Him in any sense.

" Executer and Fashioner of creation. "That is, the whole world and everything in it, from the initial plan of its creation till its coming into existence in its final, finished form, is entirely Allah's work of creation. Nothing has come into existence by itself nor come about accidentally, nor has anyone else the least share in its creation and development. Here, Allah's act of creation has been described in three separate stages, which take place one after the other. First is the stage of khalq, which means to ordain, or to plan. It is like an engineer's conceiving the design of a building, which he intends to build for a specific purpose and draws out its detailed diagram and model The second stage is bar', which actually means to separate, to cut, to split asunder. The Creator has been called bari' in the sense that He enforces the plan He has conceived and brings out the thing from non-existence into existence. It is Analogous to the engineer's putting marks on the ground of the full measurements of the building according to the plan, digging the foundations, raising the walls and completing all the practical preliminaries of the construction work. The third stage is taswir, which means to give shape; here it implies giving something its final complete shape. In all these three stages there is no resemblance whatever between Allah's work and human works. None of human plans is such as may not have been derived from previous models and plans. But each of Allah's plans is, unique and His own original creation. Whatever man makes, he makes it by combining the substances created by Allah. He does not bring anything from nonexistence into existence, but composes and constructs by different methods whatever is present and available. Contrary to this, Allah has brought everything from non-existence into creation, and the substance itself of which He has made the universe is created by Him. Likewise, in the matter of giving shape also man is not the inventor but an imitator, and only a poor imitator. The real Maker of forms and shapes is Allah, Who has given a unique and matchless shape to every species and individual and has never repeated exactly the same shape or from.  

" His are the names most beautiful. " Names imply the adjectives, and "His are the excellent names" means that those adjectives which indicate or express some kind of defect are not appropriate for Him. He should be remembered by those names which express His attributes of Perfection. In the Qur'an these beautiful names of Allah have been mentioned here and there, and in the Hadith 99 names of that Exalted and Pure Being have been enumerated which Timidhi and Ibn Majah have related on the authority pf Hadrat Abu Hurairah. If one studies these names as mentioned in the Qur'an and the Hadith carefully, the can easily understand what words would be appropriate ant suitable if one has to remember Allah in another language.

" Whatever is in the heavens and the earth extols His Glory " That is, "Everything proclaims .with the tongue, or otherwise, that its Creator is free frown every fault and defect, weakness and error."

" He is the Most Mighty, the Most Wise " For explanation, see tafsir of verse 1 of  Surah 57. Al-Hadid.

Yusuf Ali  Explanation: Allah's attributes of Goodness and Power having been referred to, we are now told of His creative energy, of which three aspects are here mentioned, as explained in the following note. The point is emphasised that He does not merely create and leave alone; He goes on fashioning, evolving new forms and colours, and sustaining all the energies and capacities which He has put into His Creation, according to various laws which He has established.

The act or acts of creation have various aspects, and the various words used in this connection are summarised in n. 120 to ii. 117, as supplemented by n. 916 to vi. 94 and n. 923 to vi. 98. Khalaqa is the general term for creation, and the Author of all Creation is Khaliq. Baraa implies a process of evolving from previously created matter or state; the Author of this process is Bari-u, the Originator. Sawwara implies giving definite form or colour, so as to make a thing exactly suited to a given end or object: hence the title Musawwir, Fashioner for this shows the completion of the visible stage of creation.

Thus the argument of the Sura is rounded off on the same note as was struck at the beginning lix. 1. The first verse and the last verse of the Surah are the same, except as regards the tense of the verb sabbaha. In the first verse it is the optative form of the preterite sabbaha: everything declares the Glory of Allah! After the illustrations given, the declaratory form of the aorist is appropriate, yusabbihu: "everything doth declare the Glory of Allah'.

Muhammad Asad Explanation: " He is God, the Creator, the Maker who shapes all forms and appearances! " Thus Baydawi. The two terms al-bari' ("the Maker") and al-musawwir ("the Shaper", i.e., of all forms and appearances) evidently constitute here one single unit.

Note: Since tafsir by Sayyid Abul Ala Maududi is quite elaborate, therefore, Tafsir Ibn Kathir has not been included here. For which please click here, if desired.

You may now like to listen to eminent Muslim scholar Nouman Ali Khan as to what Guidance can we draw from Surah Hashr:

Please refer to our Reference Page "114 Chapters (Sūrahs) of the Holy Qur'an" for translation, explanation and exegesis of all other chapters of the Qur'an. You may also refer to our Reference Pages for knowing more about Islam and Quran.
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 and explanation 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 (links to Reference Pages given below):  
  • Tafsir Ibn Khatir
  • Muhammad Asad Translation
  • Al-Quran, Yusuf Ali Translation
  • Javed Ahmad Ghamidi / Al Mawrid
  • Towards Understanding the Quran
  • Verse by Verse Qur'an Study Circle
  • Tafsir Nouman Ali Khan
  • Qur'an Wiki
In addition the references of  other sources which have been explored have also been given below. Those desirous of detailed explanations and tafsir (exegesis), may refer to these sites:

Photo | References: | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 67 | 8 | 9 | 10 |

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