Showing posts with label 21. Show all posts
Showing posts with label 21. Show all posts

Monday 16 September 2019

Surah Al Anbiya - The Prophets: 21st Chapter of Qur'an - Exegesis Part III

Sürah Al Ambiyāʼ " الْأَنْبِيَاء ", pronounced as Al-Ambiyāʼ is the twenty first surah with 112 ayahs with seven rukus, part of the 17th Juzʼ  of the Holy Qur'an.

The surah draws its title from the stories, and lessons from the lives of many of the more notable prophets, mentioned in verses verses 48 to 91. 

As already mentioned in the Overview that for the ease of understanding, the surah has been divided into three parts as under:
  • Part I  : [Ruku 1-3] - This part mentions the accusations and lies of the pagans of Makkah that a human being could not be a Messenger and therefore they could not accept Muhammad (peace be upon him) as a Prophet. And in response arguments and admonitions have been used to remove another misunderstanding of theirs. 
  • Part II : [Ruku 4-6] - The main part of the surah wherein mention of earlier prophets and messengers has been exclusively made to show that all the Prophets, who were sent by Allah, were human beings and had all the characteristics of a man except those which were exclusive to Prophethood. They had no share in Godhead and they had to implore Allah to fulfill each and every necessity of theirs.
  • Part III: Ruku 7 -  In the last ruku, it has been declared that only those who follow the Right Way, will come out successful in the final judgment of Allah and those who discard it shall meet with the worst consequences. The people have been told that it is a great favor of Allah that He has sent His Messenger to inform them beforehand of this Reality and that those, who consider his coming to be an affliction instead of a blessing, are foolish people.
We have already the Parts I & II. Let us now read the translation and exegesis / tafseer in English of the Part IIIFor Arabic Text, please refer to the references given at the end and may also listen to its recitation in Arabic with English subtitles:

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

Ruku / Section 7 [94-112]

In Part II, Allah calls all the prophets a single community and says worship Me alone.  Now in this last Ruku, it is being stressed that if a believer does righteous deeds the angels will record it.  Believers and disbelievers are both being warned that towards the end of time the people of Gog and Magog will be let loose to swarm across the land.  On the Day of Judgement the eyes of the disbelievers will stare in horror and say, "We were wrong".  But the people destined for Paradise will be kept far away from Hell; they will not even hear a sound of it.  This day of great terror will not grieve them and the angels will greet them.  Surely this is great news for the believers.  My (God’s) righteous servants will inherit the earth.

Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) has been sent as a blessing for all the worlds and was told to warn them (humankind) asking them to affirm their belief that God is one. 

Verses 94-97 Whoever does good deeds, provided he is a believer, his endeavor will not be rejected
( 94 )   So whoever does righteous deeds while he is a believer - no denial will there be for his effort, and indeed We, of it, are recorders.
Allah gives credit for every act of righteousness, however small: when combined with sincere Faith in Allah, it becomes the stepping stone to higher and higher things. It is never lost.
( 95 )   And there is prohibition upon [the people of] a city which We have destroyed that they will [ever] return
The verse may be interpreted in three ways:
  1. The community which is once destroyed by the scourge of Allah can never have a second or new life.
  2. After its destruction, its people are not given a second chance for their test, then they shall be presented in the court of Allah for final judgment.
  3. When a community transgresses the last limits in its wickedness, injustices and disobedience, and Allah ordains to destroy it, no other chance of repentance is given to it because it becomes incapable of turning back to right guidance. 
When wickedness comes to such a pass that the Wrath of Allah descends, as it did on Sodom, the case becomes hopeless. The righteous were warned and delivered before the Wrath descended. But those destroyed will not get another chance, as they flouted all previous chances. They will only be raised at the approach of the Day of Judgment.
( 96 )   Until when [the dam of] Gog and Magog has been opened and they, from every elevation, descend
Gog and Magog: The name stands for wild and lawless tribes who will break their barriers and swarm through the earth. This will be one of the prognostications of the approaching Judgment.

For the details about Gog and Magog, see (see verses 83-94 of Surah 18, Al-Kahf). They will be let loose in the sense that they will swoop down on the regions of the earth like a beast of prey which is set free from its cage suddenly. The time of the fulfillment of the true promise will come on the eve of Resurrection and the appearance of Gog and Magog will be a sign of it.
( 97 )   And [when] the true promise has approached; then suddenly the eyes of those who disbelieved will be staring [in horror, while they say], "O woe to us; we had been unmindful of this; rather, we were wrongdoers."
In a tradition related in Muslim, the Prophet (peace be upon him) said: Resurrection will not take place until ten signs appear:
(1) The smoke. (2) Dajjal. (3) Daabat-ul-Ard. (4) Rising of the sun from the west. (5) Coming down of Jesus, son of Mary. (6) Sudden attack of Gog and Magog. (7-9) Three landslides, one in the east, the second in the west and the third in Arabia. (10) The flare up of a great fire from Yemen which will drive the people to the Plain of Resurrection. 
In another tradition the Prophet (peace be upon him) stated that after the swoop of Gog and Magog, Resurrection will be so near that it may take place at any moment just as a pregnant woman might deliver the child at any moment, in the day or night, after her term has expired. But the reference to the appearance of Gog and Magog in the Quran and Hadith does not indicate that they will swoop on mankind jointly. It may be that they will clash against each other near the time of Resurrection and their mutual conflict might result in a universal catastrophe and destruction.

“We were in heedlessness” contains a kind of excuse in it, as if to say: The Prophets warned us of the Day of Resurrection but we were wrongdoers and paid no heed to their warning.

Read more about Gog and Magog

Verses 98-106 The Day of Judgement and the fate of the disbelievers and the believers
( 98 )   Indeed, you [disbelievers] and what you worship other than Allah are the firewood of Hell. You will be coming to [enter] it.
We learn from traditions that Abdullah bin Azzaara raised an objection in this connection, saying: According to this not only our deities but Prophets Jesus and Uzair (peace be upon them) and the Angels also will become fuel for Hell because they are also worshiped. The Prophet (peace be upon him) replied:
Yes, everyone who would approve of his own worship instead of Allah’s will go to Hell along with those who worshiped him. 
He meant to say: There is no reason why Prophets Jesus and Uzair (peace be upon them) and the Angels should go to Hell because they never approved that they should be worshiped instead of Allah, and were not responsible for this. On the other hand, they taught people to worship Allah alone. Of course, those who tried to become deities and became partners in the shirk of others will certainly go to Hell along with their worshipers. Likewise those, who induced others to take deities other than Allah, will go to Hell. Satan comes under this category for he induces others to make deities. Thus it is Satan who is made the real deity whom they obey and commit shirk. Besides this, idols of stone and wood and other accessories of shirk will also be thrown into Hell along with the mushriks so that the latter should see that their deities were becoming a cause of the intensity of their torture of fire instead of becoming their intercessors.
( 99 )   Had these [false deities] been [actual] gods, they would not have come to it, but all are eternal therein.
The ultimate proof of Truth and Falsehood will be that Truth will endure and come to its own, while Falsehood will be destroyed. And so the men who worshipped Truth will come to their own, while those who worshipped Falsehood will be in a Fire of Punishment they could scarcely have imagined before. In that state there will be nothing but regrets and sighs and groans, and these evil sounds will drown everything else.
لَهُمۡ فِيۡهَا زَفِيۡرٌ وَّهُمۡ فِيۡهَا لَا يَسۡمَعُوۡنَ‏ 
( 100 )   For them therein is heavy sighing, and they therein will not hear.
 The Arabic word zafeer means hard breathing because of excessive heat, hard work and weariness.
( 101 )   Indeed, those for whom the best [reward] has preceded from Us - they are from it far removed.
These will be the people who practiced virtue and righteousness in this world. Allah has already promised that they will be kept safe from the torture and will be granted salvation.

In contrast to the misery of those who rejected Truth and Right, will be the happiness of those who accepted it. The good will not hear the least sound of the groans of evil. Their true soul's desires will be fulfilled-not temporarily as in this world, but in a permanent form.
( 102 )   They will not hear its sound, while they are, in that which their souls desire, abiding eternally.
( 103 )   They will not be grieved by the greatest terror, and the angels will meet them, [saying], "This is your Day which you have been promised"
The Judgment and balancing of accounts will be a mighty Terror to the evil-doers. But it will cause, to the righteous, not grief or anxiety, but hope and happiness, for now they will be in a congenial atmosphere, and will see the fulfilment of their ideals in the meeting and greeting of the angels, preparatory to their enjoyment of the supreme Bliss-seeing the Face of Allah.

The time of mustering and going before Allah will be very dreadful for the common people but the righteous people will have full peace of mind because everything will be happening according to their expectations. Their faith and the righteous deeds they did in the world, will help console them by the grace of Allah and, instead of grief and sorrow, they will be filled with the hope that they are going to get their promised rewards.
( 104 )   The Day when We will fold the heaven like the folding of a [written] sheet for the records. As We began the first creation, We will repeat it. [That is] a promise binding upon Us. Indeed, We will do it.
The world-the universe-as we know it, will be folded up like a scroll of parchment, for it will have done its work. If Allah created all this world out of nothing, He can create an entirely new heaven and a new earth, on a plane of which we can form no conception in our present life. And He will do so, for that is His promise.
وَلَـقَدۡ كَتَبۡنَا فِى الزَّبُوۡرِ مِنۡۢ بَعۡدِ الذِّكۡرِ اَنَّ الۡاَرۡضَ يَرِثُهَا عِبَادِىَ الصّٰلِحُوۡنَ‏ 
( 105 )   And We have already written in the book [of Psalms] after the [previous] mention that the land [of Paradise] is inherited by My righteous servants.
Zabur "الزَّبُوۡرِ ": the Book of the Psalms of David. The name of David is expressly mentioned in connection with the Zabur in Surah iv An Nisa verse 163 and Surah xvii Al Isr'aa verse 55. Although there the indefinite article is applied to the word as meaning a Book of Scripture. See Psalms xxv. 13, "his seed shall inherit the earth"; xxxvii. 11, "the meek shall inherit the earth" (quoted by Jesus in Matt. v.3); and xxxvii. 29, "the righteous shall inherit the land."

The same promise occurs in the Pentateuch, Exod. xxxii. 13.
( 106 )   Indeed, in this [Qur'an] is notification for a worshipping people.
[ The culmination of Allah's Revelation is in the Qur-an, which confirms previous scriptures, corrects the errors which men introduced into them, and explains many points in detail for all who seek for right worship and service to Allah-whether they inherit the previous Books ("People of the Book") or not. It is a universal Message.]

The interpretation of this verse has given rise to a great misunderstanding. Some people have tried to interpret it in a way, which is entirely opposed to the ideology of the Quran.

They interpret it to mean:
The inheritance of the kingdom and the resources of the earth are given to the righteous people alone in this worldly life, and upon them alone Allah showers His favors and blessings. 
Then they apply this formula conversely and conclude that the gift of this inheritance of the earth is the sole criterion between the righteous and the unrighteous men. The righteous is the one who inherits the sovereignty of the earth and the unrighteous the one who is deprived of this inheritance.

But when they apply their formula in the historical perspective, they find that most of those nations which have inherited the earth in the past and are inheriting it today, have been and are mostly disbelieving, mushriks, atheists and immoral, and that these are not the characteristics of the righteous people when judged by the criterion put forward by the Quran. From Nimrod and Pharaoh to the present day communist despots, who have been inheriting the earth, were and are unbelievers and the enemies of God and therefore could not be considered righteous, according to the Quranic formula. Faced with this situation, they start arguing that there must be some error in the conception of the righteous which should be such as would fit all the inheritors of the earth whether they were Caliphs like Abu Bakr Siddiq and Umar Farooq or Changez and Halaku. This research leads them to the Darwinian theory of the survival of the fittest and they assume fitness to be a synonym of righteousness.

According to this new conception or definition of righteousness, the proposition would plainly mean: Any person, or a group of persons, who is capable of conquering and subduing countries by military force and has the ability to exploit the resources of the earth successfully is a righteous servant of Allah and his achievement is a criterion and message of righteousness and worship for other human beings to follow. Consequently, if they fail to achieve the inheritance of the earth, they will neither be regarded among the righteous nor among the servants of Allah. As a result of this interpretation of the verse, and this conception of righteousness and service, they were confronted with the interpretation of some basic and fundamental articles of the Islamic faith. For instance, according to the Quran, no deed, howsoever good, could be regarded as righteous without belief in Allah, the Hereafter, the Prophets and the Books. Moreover, the invitation of the Prophet to accept the moral and legal systems of Islam would become meaningless. Then these people could not reconcile their interpretation with the teachings of the Quran that obedience to the Prophet (peace be upon him) and the commandments of Allah was absolutely essential for a righteous man and that the lack of this would make a person a disbeliever and a transgressor who deserved the wrath of Allah. If they had faced this problem boldly and honestly, they would have realized that their interpretation was wrong, but instead of this, they very impudently changed the universally accepted conception of faith, Islam, Tauhid, Prophethood and the Hereafter in order to make these basic articles of the faith fit in with their interpretation of this verse. Thus, they turned all the teachings of the Quran upside down and tampered with its meaning without the least hesitation.
Now let us consider their interpretation and point out its errors:
  • Their interpretation contradicts the teachings of the Quran as a whole, for according to these virtue, piety and goodness do not comprise material progress and ability to rule over the land. Moreover, if the Quranic word Salih (virtuous, good) is regarded as synonymous with Sahib Salahiyyat (i.e. possessor of fitness and competence), this one verse will clash with the whole of the Quran.
  • They isolate this verse from its context and ascribe to it whatever meaning they like; otherwise, they would have seen that the inheritance referred to in the context is the promise to the believers which is to be fulfilled in the Hereafter, and thus has nothing to do with inheritance in this world.
If this verse is interpreted in the context in which it occurs, it becomes very plain from the preceding verses that this promise to the righteous people holds good for the life in the Hereafter. This thing has been made more explicit in (Surah Az-Zumur, Ayats 73-74). According to this passage (which is definitely about life in the Hereafter), when the pious people will enter into Paradise, they will say: God be praised, Who has fulfilled His promise and made us heirs to the land.

Now let us consider this matter in the light of the Psalms (whether the Book of Psalms in the Bible is genuine or tampered with, because the real Psalms of Prophet David are nowhere available) to which this verse refers. According to 37:9-29: Evildoers shall be cut off: but those that wait upon the Lord, they shall inherit the earth. For yet a little while, and the wicked shall not be: yea, thou shalt diligently consider his place, and it shall not be. But the meek shall inherit the earth; and shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace....and their inheritance shall be forever....The righteous shall inherit the land, and dwell therein forever. Thus the Psalms also confirm word for word (verse 105). It is obvious that (They shall) dwell therein forever refers to the life in the Hereafter.

As regards to the inheritance of the earth in this worldly life, Allah gives it as a heritage to those of His servants whom He pleases (Surah VIII Al-Anfaal, Ayat 128), irrespective of whether they are believers or disbelievers, righteous or wicked, not as a reward but for their trial. Your Lord will make you rulers on the earth, and then He will see how you conduct yourselves. (Surah VIII Al-Anfaal, Ayat 129). The heritage of the earth in this worldly life is neither permanent nor everlasting. It is merely bestowed as a trial for different communities. On the other hand, the heritage of the land referred to in (verse 105) is permanent and forever and, according to the Quran, it will be bestowed on the basis of this formula: The land belongs to Allah and He will make only His righteous servants heirs to it not for their test but as a permanent reward for the righteous attitude they adopted in this worldly life.

Verses 107-112 Allah has sent Muhammad (pbuh) as a blessing for all the worlds (Humans, Jinns and others)
( 107 )   And We have not sent you, [O Muhammad], except as a mercy to the worlds.
There is no question now of race or nation, of a "chosen people" or the "seed of Abraham"; or the "seed of David"; or of Hindu Arya-varta; of Jew or Gentile, Arab or 'Ajam (non-Arab), Turk or Tajik, European or Asiatic, White or Coloured; Aryan, Semitic, Mongolian, or African; or American, Australian, or Polynesian. To all men and creatures other than men who have any spiritual responsibility, the principles universally apply.

This verse can also be translated as: We have sent you only as a blessing for the people of the world. In both cases it will mean that the appointment of the Prophet (peace be upon him) is indeed a blessing and mercy of Allah to the whole world. This is because he aroused the neglectful world from its heedlessness and gave it the knowledge of the criterion between truth and falsehood, and warned it very clearly of both the ways of salvation and ruin. This fact has been stated here to tell the disbelievers of Makkah that they were quite wrong in their estimate of the Prophet (peace be upon him) that he was an affliction and distress for them because they said: This man has sown seeds of discard among our clans and separated near relatives from each other. They have been told here: O people, you are wrong to presume that he is an affliction for you; but he is in reality a blessing and mercy of Allah for you.
قُلۡ اِنَّمَا يُوۡحٰۤى اِلَىَّ اَنَّمَاۤ اِلٰهُكُمۡ اِلٰـهٌ وَّاحِدٌ​  ۚ فَهَلۡ اَنۡـتُمۡ مُّسۡلِمُوۡنَ‏ 
( 108 )   Say, "It is only revealed to me that your god is but one God; so will you be Muslims [in submission to Him]?"
'Not my God only, but also your God; for there is but One God, the Universal Lord, Who made and loves and cherishes all.'
( 109 )   But if they turn away, then say, "I have announced to [all of] you equally. And I know not whether near or far is that which you are promised.
That is, I do not know the time and the form of the punishment of Allah for your rejection of the message. It may come at any time in any shape.

'If you do not realise the significance of the Message, I at least have done my duty. I have given the Good News for the Righteous and the Warning for the Unjust, without favour or partiality, and without abating one jot of the truth, openly and squarely for all. Do not ask me when the Good News and the Warning will be fulfilled. That is for Allah to decide, not for me or for you to know.'
( 110 )   Indeed, He knows what is declared of speech, and He knows what you conceal.
This refers to their secret plots and their whispering campaign which have been mentioned in (verse 3). There, too, the Prophet (peace be upon him) had said: My Lord has the knowledge of everything that is said in the heavens or the earth for He is All-Hearing, All-Knowing. (verse 4). This was to warn them that they would be taken to task for these things, too.

The Messenger of Allah freely and impartially teaches all how to carry out Allah's Will and live a good life. If some of them are hypocrites and come into the Ummat (Brotherhood) from baser motives and not the pure motives of the love of Allah, their motives and conduct will be judged by Allah and not by men.
( 111 )   And I know not; perhaps it is a trial for you and enjoyment for a time."
This was a trial because the delay in the punishment was deluding them into believing: All the things put forward by the Prophet are false. Had he been a true Prophet of Allah, we would have been punished long before this for our disbelief. They did not realize that the reason for the delay was that Allah willed to give them respite for mending their ways.

In the same way if men who come into the Brotherhood from pure motives and yet feel aggrieved that those outside are better off from a worldly point of view, they are wrong. It may be that the fleeting enjoyment of this world's goods is but a trial, and they should be grateful for being saved from temptation.
قٰلَ رَبِّ احۡكُمۡ بِالۡحَـقِّ​ؕ وَرَبُّنَا الرَّحۡمٰنُ الۡمُسۡتَعَانُ عَلٰى مَا تَصِفُوۡنَ
( 112 )   [The Prophet] has said, "My Lord, judge [between us] in truth. And our Lord is the Most Merciful, the one whose help is sought against that which you describe."
See above, explanation of verse 4. The better reading is "Say" in the imperative, rather than "He (the Prophet) said (or says)" in the indicative mood. Note that, on that construction, there are three distinct things which the Prophet is asked to say: viz.: (1) the statement in verses 109-11, addressed to those who turn away from the Message; (2) the prayer addressed to Allah in the first part of verse 112; and (3) the advice given indirectly to the Believers, in the second part of verse 112. I have marked these divisions by means of inverted commas.

That is, Allah's judgment as between the Teacher and those who refuse his Message, or between the righteous and those who taunt them for their poverty, will be the true one, and both the Teacher and the Ummat must leave the judgment to Allah.

Blasphemy is a dreadful sin. We must guard ourselves from it. But as regards others, if we cannot prevent it, we must pray to Allah for assistance and not rely upon carnal weapons.

Thank you for reading Part III of the Surah Al Ambiyāʼ. Here we come to the end of the Last Ruku of the surah. Please link it with the Overview and the earlier two parts for complete understanding of the entire Surah Al Ambiyāʼ

You may now like to listen to Arabic recitation of Al-Ambiyāʼ with English subtitles:

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

Photo | References: | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 |
Reading the Holy Quran should be a daily obligation of a Muslim - Reading it with translation will make it meaningful. But reading its Exegesis / Tafsir will make you understand it fully.

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

If you like Islam: My Ultimate Decision, and to keep yourself updated on all our latest posts to know more about Islam, follow us on Facebook

Please share this page to your friends and family members through Facebook, WhatsApp or any means on Social Media so that they can also be benefited by it and better understand Islam and the Holy Qur'an - Insha Allah (Allah Willing) you shall be blessed with the best of both worlds.

Sunday 15 September 2019

Surah Al Anbiya - The Prophets: 21st Chapter of Quran - Exegesis Part II

Sürah Al Ambiyāʼ " الْأَنْبِيَاء ", pronounced as Al-Ambiyāʼ is the twenty first surah with 112 ayahs with seven rukus, part of the 17th Juzʼ  of the Holy Qur'an.

The surah draws its title from the stories, and lessons from the lives of many of the more notable prophets, mentioned in verses verses 48 to 91. 

As already mentioned in the Overview that for the ease of understanding, the surah has been divided into three parts as under:
  • Part I  : [Ruku 1-3] - This part mentions the accusations and lies of the pagans of Makkah that a human being could not be a Messenger and therefore they could not accept Muhammad (peace be upon him) as a Prophet. And in response arguments and admonitions have been used to remove another misunderstanding of theirs. 
  • Part II : [Ruku 4-6] - The main part of the surah wherein mention of earlier prophets and messengers has been exclusively made to show that all the Prophets, who were sent by Allah, were human beings and had all the characteristics of a man except those which were exclusive to Prophethood. They had no share in Godhead and they had to implore Allah to fulfill each and every necessity of theirs.
  • Part III: Ruku 7 -  In the last ruku, it has been declared that only those who follow the Right Way, will come out successful in the final judgment of Allah and those who discard it shall meet with the worst consequences. The people have been told that it is a great favor of Allah that He has sent His Messenger to inform them beforehand of this Reality and that those, who consider his coming to be an affliction instead of a blessing, are foolish people.
Let us now read the translation and exegesis / tafseer in English of the Part IIFor Arabic Text, please refer to the references given at the end and may also listen to its recitation in Arabic with English subtitles:

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

We will begin Ruku 4 from verse 48 onwards as verses 42-47 have already been covered in Part I to maintain continuity of the subject matter discussed in Part I.

From here on begin the stories of the Prophets. If we consider these stories in the context in which these occur, it becomes clear that these have been related to impress the following themes.
  • All the former Prophets were human beings. Therefore there is nothing strange or unusual that a human being like Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) has been sent as a Messenger.
  • The mission and teachings of this Prophet are the same as of those who were sent before him.
  • All the Prophets had been granted a privileged position by Allah, Who blessed them with special favors. For instance, though they were made to suffer from hardships and persecutions for years, ultimately Allah heard their prayers and helped them in miraculous ways against their enemies and persecutors.
  • Despite Allah’s special favors on them they were no more than His humble servants and human beings and had no share whatever in Godhead. So much so that sometimes they committed errors of judgment, fell ill, were put to trials and even committed faults, for which they were called to account by Allah.
Ruku / Section 4 [42-50]
Verses 48-50 Musa was given Al-Furqan (the criterion of right and wrong), so is this Al Qur'an:

وَلَـقَدۡ اٰتَيۡنَا مُوۡسٰى وَهٰرُوۡنَ الۡفُرۡقَانَ وَضِيَآءً وَّذِكۡرًا لِّـلۡمُتَّقِيۡنَۙ‏ 
( 48 )   And We had already given Moses and Aaron the criterion and a light and a reminder for the righteous
Here three things are mentioned as given to Moses and Aaron: (1) Al furqan " الۡفُرۡقَانَ ": The Criterion for judgment: this might well be the wonderful Proofs they saw of Allah's goodness and glory from which they could have no doubt as to Allah's will and command. (2) Dhiaun " ضِيَآءً ": A light which showed the right way of life. Also this was the inner enlightenment of their soul, such as comes from inspiration (3) Zikrun " ذِكۡرً ": An admonition, which reminded the erring descendants of Adam to remember the lesson they had forgotten.

Though it was sent for the good of all human beings, only the pious people, having these characteristics, could benefit from it.

This verse is similar to the verse 53 of Chapter 2, Surah Al Baqarah where the mention of Al Furqan is also made: : "And recall (that while you were committing this wrong) We gave Moses the Scripture and the Criterion that you are guided to the Right Way."
( 49 )   Who fear their Lord unseen, while they are of the Hour apprehensive.
Note the three kinds of fear mentioned in verses 48-49: (1) Taqwa is the fear of running counter to the will of Allah; it is akin to the love of Him; for we fear to offend those we love; it results in right conduct, and those who entertain it are "those who would do right". (2) Then there is Khayat, the fear of Allah, lest the person who entertains it may be found, in his inmost thoughts, to be short of the standard which Allah wishes for him; this is also righteous but in a less high degree than Taqwa which is akin to love. (3) And thirdly, there is the fear of consequences on the Day of Judgment (ishfaq); this also may lead to righteousness, but is on a still lower plane. Perhaps the three correspond to the Criterion, the Light, and the Message (or Warning) of the last verse.
( 50 )   And this [Qur'an] is a blessed message which We have sent down. Then are you with it unacquainted?
Here is a Prophet and a Book, greater than Moses and his Book. Are you going to reject him and it?

Ruku / Section 5 [51-75]
Verses 51-71 Prophet Ibrahim questioned the idol worshiping of his father and his people and Ibrahim broke all their idols to show, that the gods who can not even defend themselves, how they can be of any benefit to them and They decided to burn him alive but Allah commanded the fire to be cool and comfortable for Ibrahim:

وَلَـقَدۡ اٰتَيۡنَاۤ اِبۡرٰهِيۡمَ رُشۡدَهٗ مِنۡ قَبۡلُ وَ كُنَّا بِهٖ عٰلِمِيۡنَ​ۚ‏
( 51 )   And We had certainly given Abraham his sound judgement before, and We were of him well-Knowing
The Arabic word rushd is very comprehensive and means righteousness as well.

We had blessed Abraham with discretion: The discretion he showed in discriminating between the right and the wrong etc. was not of his own acquirement but had been bestowed on him by Us.

We knew him well: We knew that he was worthy of Prophethood, therefore We appointed him as such. According to (Surah Al-Anaam, Ayat 124): Allah knows best whom to entrust with His Mission. It contains a subtle answer to the objection raised by the chiefs of the Quraish: Why has Allah appointed this man, the Prophet (peace be upon him) to the office of Prophethood, when he is in no way superior to us. This objection has been answered, as if to say: The same objection might even have been raised against Prophet Abraham (peace be upon him) by his people, but We knew his capabilities. Therefore We selected him for Prophethood.

"We were of him well-Knowing ": Hence Abraham's title "Friend of Allah" (Khalil-ullah):

وَمَنۡ اَحۡسَنُ دِيۡنًا مِّمَّنۡ اَسۡلَمَ وَجۡهَهٗ لِلّٰهِ وَهُوَ مُحۡسِنٌ وَّاتَّبَعَ مِلَّةَ اِبۡرٰهِيۡمَ حَنِيۡفًا​ ؕ وَاتَّخَذَ اللّٰهُ اِبۡرٰهِيۡمَ خَلِيۡلًا‏  

"And whose way of life could be better than that of he who submits his whole being to Allah, does good, and follows exclusively the way of Abraham whom Allah took for a friend?" (Surah An Nisa, Chapter 4:125)

In this connection, please also see (Surah Al-Baqarah, Ayats 124-141, 258-260): (Surah Al-Anaam, Ayats 74-84): (Surah At- Tauba, Ayat 114): (Surah Houd, Ayats 69-76): (Surah Ibrahim, Ayats 35-41): (Surah Al-Hijr, Ayats 51-58 )and (Surah An-Nahal, Ayats 120-122).
( 52 )   When he said to his father and his people, "What are these statues to which you are devoted?"
Before proceeding further, it should be kept in mind that the incident from the history of Prophet Abraham (peace be upon him) has been cited here to refute the erroneous creeds of the Quraish. This was meant to hit them hard for they were the descendants of Prophet Abraham (peace be upon him) and were proud of their relationship with him. It was he who had built the Kabah which had become the center of the entire Arabia and they, being its keepers, were its most important clan. Therefore, they could not remain indifferent to this answer.

Reference is made to Abraham in many places. It was with reference to his relations to his father: the problem was how a righteous man should deal with his father, when his duty to his father conflicts with his duty to Allah. Here the problem is: how a righteous man should deal with evil and overcome it; how he should fight against evil, and if he is subjected to the fire of persecution, how his firmness draws Allah's Mercy, and the very troubles he is placed in become his comfort and joy.
( 53 )   They said, "We found our fathers worshippers of them."( 54 )   He said, "You were certainly, you and your fathers, in manifest error."
( 55 )   They said, "Have you come to us with truth, or are you of those who jest?"
Verse 55: The literal translation will be: Are you presenting the truth before us, or just playing with us? They were so sure of the truth of their creed that they could never imagine that anyone could be serious in declaring it to be false.
( 56 )   He said, "[No], rather, your Lord is the Lord of the heavens and the earth who created them, and I, to that, am of those who testify.
( 57 )   And [I swear] by Allah, I will surely plan against your idols after you have turned and gone away."
That is, if you do not understand this by argument, I will present a practical proof that these idols are helpless and have no powers. Therefore, it is wrong to make them your deities. See next verse:
( 58 )   So he made them into fragments, except a large one among them, that they might return to it [and question].
This was that practical proof. In the absence of the priests and attendants, Prophet Abraham (peace be upon him) entered their central Temple and broke all the idols to pieces.

He was enacting a scene, to make the people ashamed of worshipping senseless stocks and stones. He left the biggest idol untouched and broke the others to pieces, as if a fight had taken place between the idols, and the biggest had smashed the others. Would they turn to the surviving idol and ask him how it all happened?

"That they might return to it [and question]": The pronoun in the original text may be translated into it or him. In the former case, it will refer to the chief idol and in the latter to Prophet Abraham (peace be upon him). In the first case, it will imply a subtle sarcasm in order to make them realize that their creed of idol worship was foolish, for obviously the chief idol could not break the minor idols. In the second case, it will refer to Prophet Abraham (peace be upon him), who thought that they might turn to him about the incident and he might get an opportunity to have a frank talk with them about their absurd creed.
( 59 )   They said, "Who has done this to our gods? Indeed, he is of the wrongdoers."( 60 )   They said, "We heard a young man mention them who is called Abraham."
Different groups of people are speaking. Those who were not present at Abraham's speech in verse 57 ask, "who has done this?" Those who were, at once name him, whereupon a formal council of the people was held, and Abraham was arraigned.
( 61 )   They said, "Then bring him before the eyes of the people that they may testify."
This was exactly what Prophet Abraham (peace be upon him) expected to happen. He wished that the matter should not remain confined to the priests and the attendants but the common people also should be present there to witness that their deities were helpless and their priests were deluding them about their powers. The priests committed the same folly as was later committed by Pharaoh when he arranged an encounter between Prophet Moses (peace be upon him) and the magicians in the open in front of the multitudes of the common people, and the former got an opportunity to show publicly the miracle of the staff which shattered the illusory, magical tricks of the magicians.
( 62 )   They said, "Have you done this to our gods, O Abraham?"
( 63 )   He said, "Rather, this - the largest of them - did it, so ask them, if they should [be able to] speak."
The very sentence, “So ask them, if they can speak”, is a clear proof that it was not a lie when Prophet Abraham (peace be upon him) said: “But this has done it, biggest of them, this one”. What he intended by this was to make them realize and confess that their idols were helpless because they could do nothing to protect themselves and could not even speak. It is clear that when a person poses an unreal question for the sake of argument in order to bring home the fact that the position taken by the other party is untenable, it cannot be considered as a lie; firstly, because the speaker himself never intended it to be a lie, and secondly, because the addressees also knew that it was not a lie.

The foregoing remarks have been necessitated because of a tradition that Prophet Abraham (peace be upon him) told three lies in his life, of which one is the above mentioned event. The second lie is contained in Surah As-Saffaat, Ayat 89: I am indisposed, and the third lie is not contained in the Quran but in the Bible that he declared his wife to be his sister. (Gen. 12:12,13, 18;19). It is a pity that this tradition has given rise to two divergent opinions. The orthodox traditionalists actually believe that Prophet Abraham told these lies just because an authentic tradition says so. They do not consider that it is far better to discard the tradition according to which a Prophet is accused of being a liar. On the other hand, those who are against the traditions, discard all of them just because this solitary tradition, which has been reported as authentic by Bukhari and Muslim, is unreliable on the very face of it. Obviously it needs no elaborate arguments to prove that all the traditions cannot be discarded just because one or a few of them are unreliable. As regards the upholders of the first opinion, they have gone to the other extreme and think that a tradition can be discarded in spite of the authenticity of its reporters for cogent reasons. They do this without reference to the contents of the tradition itself. But if the text of the tradition itself clearly shows that such a thing could not have been said by the Prophet (peace be upon him), there is no reason to insist that it should be accepted as authentic merely because its reporters are authentic.

This, tradition is unreliable for other reasons also. As has already been shown, the first lie is no lie at all. As regards the second lie, “I am indisposed”; it cannot be considered as a lie unless it is proved beyond doubt that Prophet Abraham (peace be upon him) was perfectly healthy at that time, and the text does not testify this. As regards the third lie, the event stated in the Bible in chapter 12 of Genesis is absurd on the face of it. When Prophet Abraham (peace be upon him) went to Egypt with his wife Sarah, he was, according to the Bible itself, 75 years old and his wife was 65. Therefore the very age of Sarah is a clear proof that she could not be a fair woman to look upon to force Prophet Abraham (peace be upon him) to pose that she was his sister in order to save his life. The tradition under discussion, which accuses Prophet Abraham to be guilty of telling a lie, has accordingly no basis at all and cannot be taken as reliable in spite of its authentic reporters.
( 64 )   So they returned to [blaming] themselves and said [to each other], "Indeed, you are the wrongdoers."
( 65 )   Then they reversed themselves, [saying], "You have already known that these do not speak!"
Literally the original text means: They were turned down upon their heads. Some commentators have interpreted it to mean: They hung down their heads with shame. But this does not fit in the context and the wording of the text. The right interpretation would be: When they considered the answer of Prophet Abraham (peace be upon him), they realized that they themselves were in the wrong, because they had set up helpless idols as deities, which could not even speak a word as to who had broken them. But soon after this, they were overpowered by obduracy and ignorance which perverted their minds and they again relapsed into crookedness.
( 66 )   He said, "Then do you worship instead of Allah that which does not benefit you at all or harm you?
( 67 )   Fie upon you and upon all that you worship beside Allah. Do you have no sense?"
As soon as they admitted in so many words that the idols could not speak, Abraham delivered his final attack: 'Then why do you worship useless impotent creatures?' After that, there remains nothing but the argument of violence, which they proceed to exercise, being the party in power. 'Burn him at the stake' is an easy cry! But it was not Abraham that suffered: it was his persecutors (xxi. 70).
( 68 )   They said, "Burn him and support your gods - if you are to act."
( 69 )   Allah said, "O fire, be coolness and safety upon Abraham."
Though this is one of those miracles which have been clearly stated in the Quran, there are people who try to prove that there was no such miracle at all. According to this passage (Ayats 68-70), Prophet Abraham (peace be upon him) was actually threatened to be burnt alive and he was accordingly thrown into the burning fire, but Allah ordered the fire to become cool and harmless for him. In the face of the clear words of the Quran, these people deny this miracle because according to them it is impossible even for Allah to go beyond the routine of the physical laws. They say that miracles cannot appeal to the rationalists of the modern age, and therefore these should be interpreted in accordance with physical laws. They forget that according to the Quran, Allah is able to do everything, and He does extraordinary and unusual things which cannot be explained by science. Therefore they should accept the Quran as it is or discard it, but they should not twist it to suit their so called rationalism.

Can we form any idea of the place where he passed through the furnace, and the stage in his career at which this happened? He was born in Ur of the Chaldees, a place on the lower reaches of the Euphrates, not a hundred miles from the Persian Gulf. This was the cradle, or one of the cradles, of human civilisation. Astronomy was studied here in very ancient times, and the worship of the sun, moon, and stars was the prevailing form of religion. Abraham revolted against this quite early in life, and his argument is referred to in Surah Al-An'am Chapter 6 verses 74-82. They also had idols in their temples, probably idols representing heavenly bodies and celestial winged creatures. He was still a youth (xxi. 60) when he broke the idols. This was stage No. 2. After this he was marked down as a rebel and persecuted. Perhaps some years passed before the incident of his being thrown into the Fire (xxi. 68-69) took place. Traditionally the Fire incident is referred to a king called Nimrud, about whom see n. 1565 to xi. 69. If Nimrud's capital was in Assyria, near Nineveh (site near modern Mosul), we may suppose either that the king's rule extended over the whole of Mesopotamia, or that Abraham wandered north through Babylonia to Assyria. Various stratagems were devised to get rid of him (xxi. 70), but he was saved by the mercy of Allah. The final break came when he was probably a man of mature age and could speak to his father with some authority. This incident is referred to in xix. 41-48. He now left his ancestral lands, and avoiding the Syrian desert, came to the fertile lands of Aram or Syria, and so south to Canaan, when the incident of Surah At-Tauba 9: 69-76 took place. It is some years after this that we may suppose he built the Ka'ba with Isma'il (Surah Al Baqarah Chapter 2, verses 124-29), and his prayer in Surah Al-Hijr 15: 35-41 may be referred to the same time. His visit to Egypt (Gen. xii. 10) is not referred to in the Qur-an.
( 70 )   And they intended for him harm, but We made them the greatest losers.
As they could not get rid of him by open punishment, they tried secret plans, but were foiled throughout. It was not he that lost, but they. On the contrary he left them and prospered and became the progenitor of great peoples.
( 71 )   And We delivered him and Lot to the land which We had blessed for the worlds.
According to the Bible, Prophet Abraham (peace be upon him) had two brothers, Nahor and Haran; Prophet Lot was the son of Haran (Gen. 11:26), and he was the only person to believe in Prophet Abraham (peace be upon him). (Surah Al-Ankaboot, Ayat 26).

The blessed land refers to Syria and Palestine, which contains both material and spiritual blessings. It is one of the most fertile regions in the world. Moreover, it was blessed for two thousand years with more Prophets than any other region of the world.

The land of Aram or Syria, which in its widest connotation includes Canaan or Palestine. Syria is a well-watered fertile land, with a Mediterranean sea-coast, on which the famous commercial cities of Tyre and Sidon were situated. Its population is very mixed, as it has been a bone of contention between all the great kingdoms and empires of Western Asia and Egypt, and European interest in it dates from the most ancient times.

Verses 72-75 Allah blessed Ibrahim with son (Ishaq) and then a grandson (Ya'qoob) and made each of them Prophets:

وَوَهَبۡنَا لَهٗۤ اِسۡحٰقَ ؕ وَيَعۡقُوۡبَ نَافِلَةً​  ؕ وَكُلًّا جَعَلۡنَا صٰلِحِيۡنَ‏ 
( 72 )   And We gave him Isaac and Jacob in addition, and all [of them] We made righteous.
Nafilat has many meanings: (1) booty; (2) extra work or prayer; (3) extra or additional gift; (4) grandson. The two last significations are implied here. Not only was Abraham given a son in his old age; he was given not only Isaac, but several sons, the chief being Isma'il and Isaac, who both joined in burying him (Gen. xxv. 9); and he also saw grandsons. Isma'il is specially mentioned later (xxi. 85) apart from Isaac's line, on account of his special importance for Islam.
( 73 )   And We made them leaders guiding by Our command. And We inspired to them the doing of good deeds, establishment of prayer, and giving of zakah; and they were worshippers of Us.
This important event of the life of Prophet Abraham (peace be upon him) has found no mention whatever in the Bible. In fact nothing about his life in Iraq, his conflict with Nimrod, his father and the community at large, his efforts to eradicate idolatry, the incident of his being cast into the fire, which ultimately led to his forced exile from the country, is mentioned anywhere in the Bible. The Bible merely mentions his migration, and that too, in a manner as if a family was migrating from one country to another in search of livelihood. There is another interesting difference between the Quran and the Bible. According to the Quran, the father of Abraham, who was a mushrik, was foremost in tyrannizing over his son, but the Bible gives a different account, which is as follows.
Now these are the generations of Terah: Terah begat Abram, Nahor, and Haran; and Haran begat Lot. And Haran died before his father Terah in the land of his nativity, in Ur of the Chaldees. And Abram and Nahor took them wives: the name of Abram’s wife was Sarai; and the name of Nahor’s wife, Milcah the daughter of Haran, the father of Milcah, and the father of Iscah. But Sarai was barren; she had no child. And Terah took Abram his son, and Lot the son of Haran his son’s son, and Sarai his daughter in law, his son Abram’s wife; and they went forth with them from Ur of the Chaldees, to go into the land of Canaan; and they came unto Haran, and settled there. And the days of Terah were two hundred and five years: and Terah died in Haran. (Gen. 11:27-32).
Now the Lord had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house, unto a land that I will shew thee. And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing. And 1 will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed. (Gen. 12: 1-3).
The Talmud, however, gives quite a few details about the life of Prophet Abraham (peace be upon him) about the period of his stay in Iraq, which are generally the same as given in the Quran, but there is a glaring discrepancy in some of the important events. In fact, one can clearly feel that the account given in the Talmud is full of heterogeneous and hypothetical things while the one given in the Quran is most clear and contains nothing unworthy of Prophet Abraham (peace be upon him). We reproduce below the account as given in the Talmud so that the reader may know the difference between the Quranic and Jewish versions. This will also remove the misunderstanding of those who think that the Quran has borrowed stories from the Bible or Jewish literature.
According to the Talmud: The wise men saw a large star in the sky on the night Abram was born and they advised Nimrod to kill the child born in the house of Terah. The King decided to kill the child but Terah hid his child and had a servant’s son killed in exchange. Terah thereupon hid his wife and child in a cave where they lived for ten years. In the 11th year Abram was taken by Terah to Noah, where he lived under the guidance of Noah and his son Shem for 39 years. During the same period Abram married his niece Sarai, who was 42 years his junior. (The Bible does not mention that Sarai was the niece of Abram; moreover, the difference in their ages is mentioned as ten years). (Gen. 11: 29, 17: 17).
The Talmud then says:
Abram left Noah at the age of 50 and came back to his father. Here he found that his father was an idolatry and had twelve idols in the house according to the twelve months of the year. He tried to preach to his father against idolatry but when the latter did not listen to him, Abram one day broke all the idols in the house. Seeing this Terah went straight to Nimrod and complained that the son who was born in his house 50 years ago had misbehaved and broken the idols. He wanted the King’s verdict on this. Nimrod summoned Abram for interrogation, but the replies given by Abram were straight, terse and clear. Nimrod sent him to jail and then referred the matter to the council for a decision. The council decided that Abram should be burnt to death. A fire was accordingly prepared and Abram was cast into it. His brother and father-in-law Haran was also similarly cast into the fire. Haran was punished because Nimrod enquired of Terah as to why he had another child killed in place of Abram when he wanted to kill Abram on the day of his birth. Terah replied that this was done at the instigation of Haran. Nimrod accordingly let off Terah but threw Haran into the fire along with Abram. Haran was burnt to death instantly but people saw that Abram was walking unhurt through the flames. When Nimrod was informed of it, he witnessed it with his own eyes and cried out: O man of the God of Heaven, come out of the fire and stand before me. Thereupon, Abram came out and Nimrod became one of his believers and gave him many costly presents. 
After this, according to the Talmud, Abram stayed in Iraq for two more years when Nimrod saw a dreadful dream and the astrologers told him that the destruction of his empire would come through Abram and that he should, therefore, put him to death. Nimrod sent people to kill Abram but Abram came to know of the plot before hand through Eleazar, a slave presented to him by Nimrod himself. Abram accordingly fled and took refuge with Noah where Terah also met him off and on secretly. The father and the son at last decided to leave the country and Noah and his son Shem also approved of their plan. Accordingly, Terah along with his son Abram and his grandson Lot and his granddaughter and son’s wife Sarai, left Ur and went to Haran. (H. Polano: The Talmud Selections, London, pp. 30-42).

Can a reasonable person after reading this account of the Talmud ever imagine that this could be a source book for the story as given in the Quran?

The spiritual lesson from this passage may be recapitulated. The righteous man makes no compromise with evil. If the votaries of evil laugh at him he pays them in their own coin, but he stands firmly by his principles. His firmness causes some confusion among the followers of evil, and he openly declares the faith that is in him. They try, openly and secretly, to injure or kill him, but Allah protects him, while evil perishes from its own excesses.
( 74 )   And to Lot We gave judgement and knowledge, and We saved him from the city that was committing wicked deeds. Indeed, they were a people of evil, defiantly disobedient.
The original Arabic word hukm used in this verse is very comprehensive. It means judgment, wisdom and discretion, and authority from Allah. Ilm stands for the revealed knowledge of the truth. Thus, We bestowed hukm and ilm on Lot. We appointed Lot as a Prophet. (For the story of Lot, see (Surah Al-Aaraf, 8: Ayats 80-84); (Surah Yunus, 10: Ayats 70-83); (Surah Al-Hijr, 15 : Ayats 57-74 ).

Lot's people were given to unspeakable abominations. His mission was to preach to them. He withstood Evil, but they rejected him. They were punished, but he and his followers were saved. See Surah Al Hijr 15 : 61-74; Surah 11. Hud 77-82; and Surah 7. Al-A'raf 80-84. A) The date of Noah was many centuries before that of Abraham.
( 75 )   And We admitted him into Our mercy. Indeed, he was of the righteous.
Ruku / Section 6 [76-93]
Verses 76-77 Allah accepted the prayer of Nuh against the unbelievers
( 76 )   And [mention] Noah, when he called [to Allah] before [that time], so We responded to him and saved him and his family from the great flood.
This refers to Prophet Noah’s (peace be upon him) prayer which he at last made after having tried his utmost to reform his people: Lord, help me for I have been overpowered. (Surah Al-Qamar, 54: Ayat 10), and Lord, do not leave even a single disbeliever on the earth. (Surah Nooh, 71: Ayat 26).

The contemporaries of Noah were given to Unbelief, oppression of the poor, and vain disputations. He carried Allah's Message to them, and standing fast in faith, built the Ark, in which he was saved with his followers from the Flood, while the wicked were drowned. See Surah Hud xi. 25-48.

“Great affliction” may either refer to living a miserable life among the wicked people, or to the flood. (For the story of Prophet Noah, see (Surah Al-Aaraf, Ayats: 59-64); (Surah Younus, 10: Ayats 72-74); (Surah Houd, 11: Ayats 25-48), and( Surah Al-Isra, 17 : Ayat 3).
( 77 )   And We saved him from the people who denied Our signs. Indeed, they were a people of evil, so We drowned them, all together.
Verses 78-82 Allah blessed Prophets Dawood and Sulaiman with wisdom, knowledge and kingdoms
( 78 )   And [mention] David and Solomon, when they judged concerning the field - when the sheep of a people overran it [at night], and We were witness to their judgement.
( 79 )   And We gave understanding of the case to Solomon, and to each [of them] We gave judgement and knowledge. And We subjected the mountains to exalt [Us], along with David and [also] the birds. And We were doing [that].
There is no mention of this event in the Bible, nor in the Jewish literature. According to the Muslim commentators, it happened like this: The goats of one person entered into the field of another person at night. The latter brought his complaint to Prophet Daud (David, peace be upon him)  who decided that the strayed goats should be given to the owner of the field. Prophet Sulaiman (Solomon,  peace be upon him) however, differed with this and opined that the goats should remain with the owner of the field up to the time that the former tilled and prepared the field as before. In regard to this Allah says: We led Solomon to the right decision. As regards the legal aspect of the matter, we cannot say with certainty what is the Islamic law in such a case nor is there any tradition of the Prophet (peace be upon him) to explain or support it. That is why the jurists have differed about it.

It should, however, be noted that in this context, the incident has been cited to show that the Prophets were after all human beings in spite of their God given powers and abilities. In this case, Prophet David committed an error of judgment because he was not guided by Allah as was Prophet Solomon, though both of them were Prophets. In the succeeding passage the wonderful powers of both have been mentioned to show that they were God given and did not make anyone a god.

Incidentally, we learn from this verse that if two judges give different decisions about one and the same case, both of them will be regarded as righteous, though the decision of only one of them will be correct, provided that both are duly qualified for sitting in judgment on the case. The Prophet (peace be upon him) has stated the same principle more elaborately. In a tradition of Bukhari, he is reported by Amar bin Aas to have said: If a judge does his very best to arrive at the right decision, he will get a double reward in case of a right judgment and a single reward if his judgment is wrong. According to another tradition, cited by Abu Daud and Ibn Majah, on the authority of Buraidah, he is reported to have said: Judges are of three kinds and only one of them will go to Paradise: the one who recognizes the truth and decides according to it. On the other hand, the one who recognizes the truth but gives his decision against it, will go to Hell, and he too, who sits in judgment on a case without the necessary knowledge (and competence).

"We made the mountains and the birds celebrate the praise of Allah": From the wording of the text, it is clear that the mountains and the birds were subjected to join Prophet David (peace be upon him) with him in glorifying Allah. This is also supported by Surah Saad, 38: Ayat 19: We had subdued the mountains by Our command so that they praised Us with him (David) in the morning and evening, and the birds too, which gathered together and repeated Our praise with him. And, according to Surah Saba, 34 ; Ayat 10: We commanded the mountains to repeat Our praise with him and also the birds to do the same. We are of the opinion that it means this: When Prophet David (peace be upon him) sang hymns of Allah’s praise and glory, in his rich and sweet voice, the mountains echoed back his melodies and the birds gathered round him and the whole scene became charming. Our interpretation is supported by this tradition.
Whatever is in the heavens and the earth celebrates the praises of Allah: Surah 17. Al-Isr'aa 44; Surah 16. An-Nahl 48-50. Even the "thunder repeateth His praises": Surah 13. Ar-Ra'd 13. All nature ever sings the praises of Allah. David sang in his Psalms, cxlviii. 7-10: "Praise the Lord from the earth, ye ... mountains and all hills; ... creeping things and flying fowl!" All nature sings to Allah's glory, in unison with David, and angels, and men of God. [Surah 34. Saba. 10 and Surah 38. Sad 18-19].
Once when Abu Musa Ashari, who had an extremely sweet voice, was reciting the Quran, the Prophet (peace be upon him) who was passing by, stood and listened to him for a long time. When he finished the recital, the Prophet (peace be upon him) remarked: This man has been granted a portion of the melody of David.
( 80 )   And We taught him the fashioning of coats of armor to protect you from your [enemy in] battle. So will you then be grateful?
According to (Surah Saba, 34 : Ayats 10-11), it was like this:
"And We made the iron soft for him (and commanded him): Make coats of mail complete in every way, and arrange the plates properly." 
This shows that Allah had made Prophet David an expert in the use of iron, and had especially taught him the art of an armorer for defense purposes. This fact is confirmed by archaeological and historical researches, for according to these the iron age in the world started between 1200 and 1000 BC and this was precisely the period of Prophet David.

At first the Hittites in Syria and Asia Minor, who flourished between 2000 and 1200 BC, discovered a method of melting and molding iron, but they guarded it as a close secret from the world, and it could not be put to common use. Later on, the Philistines came to know of it, but they too guarded it as a secret. The incessant defeats suffered by the Israelites at the hands of the Hittites and the Philistines before King Saul, were due mainly to the use of chariots of iron in their wars by the latter. (Joshua, 17:16; Judges, 1: 19, 4: 2-3).

In 1020 BC when Saul became ruler over the Israelites by Allah’s command, he subdued the Canaanites and recaptured most of Palestine. After him Prophet David (1004-965 BC) not only annexed the whole of Palestine and Jordan to the Israeli kingdom but a major portion of Syria as well. This was the time when the secret of armor making closely guarded by the Hittites and the Philistines, became well known and cheaper articles of daily use began to be made. The recent archaeological excavations conducted in Edom, to the south of Palestine, which is rich in iron ore, have brought to light furnaces for melting and molding iron. The furnace excavated near Ezion-geber, a port on the Gulf of Aqabah, in the time of Prophet Solomon, seems to have been built on the principles which are used in the modern blast furnaces. It is therefore natural that Prophet David must have first of all utilized this discovery for war purposes, because a little earlier the hostile Canaanites around his kingdom had made life really difficult for his people. The Bible also says that Prophet David was an expert in the art of melting and using iron for war purposes. (See Joshua, 17: 16; Judges, 1:19 and 4: 2-3).

For further details about Prophet David, please see (Surah Al-Baqarah, 2: yat 251) and (Sura Al-Isra, 44 : Ayat 55 ).
( 81 )   And to Solomon [We subjected] the wind, blowing forcefully, proceeding by his command toward the land which We had blessed. And We are ever, of all things, Knowing.
This is also explained in (Surah Saba, 34: Ayat 12): And for Solomon We had subjected the wind which covered a month’s journey in the morning and a month’s journey in the evening, and in (Surah Saad, 38: Ayat 36): So We subjected the wind to him. It blew softly at his bidding wherever he wanted it to blow. Thus it is clear that the wind was so subjected to Prophet Solomon that the voyages to places at one month’s sea journey could be performed conveniently, because a favorable wind was always blowing for his ships to and from those places.

It is confirmed by the Bible that Prophet Solomon had developed sea trade on a large scale. (I Kings, 10: 22). On the one side, his trade ships sailed from Ezion-geber, through the Red Sea, towards Yemen and other southern and eastern lands, and on the other, his naval fleet called Thar-shish, sailed on the Mediterranean to the western countries. The great furnace which he had built at Eziongeber for melting and molding ores extracted from the copper and iron mines in the Arabah in Edom, has been confirmed by modem archaeological researches as well. This molten iron and copper was used in building ships besides being put to other uses. The Quran refers to this when it says: And We made a fountain of molten copper to flow for him (Solomon). (Surah Saba, 34 : Ayat 12).

As regards to the subjection of the wind, it may mean that Allah, by His special favor, had so arranged that the wind, and sea voyages in those days depended entirely on wind, was always favorable for Prophet Solomon’s fleet. But if we take the literal meaning of verse 81: It blew at his command, there will be no harm, for Allah is able to give such powers to any of His servants He pleases.
( 82 )   And of the devils were those who dived for him and did work other than that. And We were of them a guardian.
It was Allah's power ultimately, Who granted him wisdom. Solomon tamed the jinns with Wisdom.

The subjection of satans has been explained in (Surah Saba, 34: Ayats 12-13). Incidentally, these verses of the Quran clearly show that the satans and jinns who worked for Prophet Solomon belonged to quite a different genus from human beings. Therefore, it is wrong to pervert the Quran to prove that they were human beings as some modernist commentators have tried to do. It is obvious from the wording of the Quran and the context in which the story of the jinns has been related, that they were not human beings. Had they been so this would have been no special favor to Solomon, because human beings had already built the gigantic monuments like the pyramids of Egypt.

Verses 83-84 Allah accepted Prophet Ayub's prayer and removed his affliction
( 83 )   And [mention] Job, when he called to his Lord, "Indeed, adversity has touched me, and you are the Most Merciful of the merciful."
There is a wide divergence of opinion concerning the personality, period and nationality of Prophet Ayub (Job, peace be upon him). Some commentators opine that he was an Israelite, while others think that he was an Egyptian or an Arab who lived before Prophet Moses, or during the time of Prophets David and Solomon (peace be upon them all). As all these conjectures are based on the Book of Job, which is self-contradictory and against the Quran. Nothing can be said about him with certainty, but in the light of the Book of Isaiah (8th century BC) and the Book of Ezekiel (6th century BC), which are more trustworthy works, he lived in the 9th century BC or even earlier. As regards to his nationality, the context in which his name occurs in (Surah An-Nisa, 4: Ayat 163) and (Surah Al-Anaam, 6: Ayat 84), it may be assumed that he was an Israelite. According to a saying of Wahb bin Munabbih, he might have been from the offspring of Esau, a son of Prophet Isaac.

The words of the prayer are noteworthy. Prophet Job mentions his distress but does not say anything more to his Lord except: You are the most Merciful. This is a great proof of his fortitude, noble and contented nature.
( 84 )   So We responded to him and removed what afflicted him of adversity. And We gave him [back] his family and the like thereof with them as mercy from Us and a reminder for the worshippers [of Allah].
How his disease was cured has been explained in (Surah Saad, 38 :Ayat 42): Stamp the ground with your foot: here is cool water for you to wash with and to drink. From this it appears that no sooner did he stamp the ground than a spring gushed forth. He took bath and drank the water and was cured of his disease. The nature of the treatment hints that he was suffering from a skin disease. This is confirmed by the Bible as well. Satan smote Job with sore boils from the sole of his foot unto his crown. (Job, 2:7).

It will be worthwhile to compare the high character of Prophet Job as given in the Quran with that in the Book of Job in the Bible. The Qur'an presents him as a veritable picture of patience and fortitude and an excellent model for the worshippers of Allah, but his general picture presented in the Book of Job is that of a man who is full of grievance against God:
Let the day perish wherein I was born, and the night in which it was said, There is a man child conceived. Let them curse (the night) that curse the day. Because it shut not the doors of my mother’s womb, nor did sorrow from mine eyes. Why died I not from the womb? (Chapter 3). Oh that my grief were thoroughly weighed, and my calamity laid in the balance together, the arrows of the Almighty are within me, the poison whereof drinketh up my spirit: the terrors of God do set themselves in array against me. (Chapter 6) I have sinned; what shall I do unto thee, O thou preserver of men? Why hast thou set me as a mark against thee, so that I am a burden to myself? And why dost thou not pardon my transgressions, and take away my iniquity? (Chapter 7: 20-21).
His three friends try to console him and counsel patience, but in vain. He says: My soul is weary of my life. I will speak in the bitterness of my soul (10:1). I have heard many such things: miserable comforters are ye all. (16:2). So these three men ceased to answer Job. Then was kindled the wrath of Elihu against Job, because he justified himself rather than God." (32:1-3), but he also failed to console him. Then the Lord himself came down and condemned the three friends and Elihu and rebuked Job and then forgave him, accepted him and blessed him. (Chapters 41, 42).

It should be noted that in the first two chapters of this Book, Prophet Job is presented as a perfect and upright man who feared God, but in the following chapters he becomes an embodiment of grievance against God, as though the estimate of Satan about him was correct and that of God incorrect. Thus this Book itself is a clear evidence that it is neither the word of God nor of Prophet Job but had been written afterwards by some literary man and incorporated in the Bible as a scripture.

In fact, Job is the pattern of humility, patience, and faith in Allah. It was with these weapons that he fought and conquered evil.

Verses 85-91 Allah accepted the prayers and blessed Prophets Isma`il, Zulkifl, Yunus, Zakariya and also blessed Maryem
( 85 )   And [mention] Ishmael and Idrees and Dhul-Kifl; all were of the patient.
Isma'il is mentioned specially, apart from the line which descended through Isaac (xxi. 72), as he was the founder of a separate and greater Ummat. His sufferings began in infancy; but his steady constancy and submission to the will of Allah were specially shown when he earned the title of "Sacrifice to Allah". That was the particular quality of his constancy and patience.
Isma'il was Az-zabih i.e., the chosen sacrifice for Allah in Muslim tradition. When Abraham told him of the sacrifice, he voluntarily offered himself for it, and never flinched from his promise, until the sacrifice was redeemed by the substitution of a ram under Allah's commands. He was the fountain-head of the Arabian Ummat, and in his posterity came the Prophet of Allah. The Ummat and the Book of Islam reflect back the prophethood on Isma'il.
There is a difference of opinion as to who Prophet Idris (peace be upon him) was. Some commentators opine that he was a Prophet from among the Israelites, but the majority of them are inclined to the view that he was a Prophet before Noah (peace be upon him). There is no authentic tradition which may help determine his identity. verse 58 of Surah Maryam, however, supports the view that he appeared before Prophet Noah (peace be upon him). For of all the Prophets mentioned, he alone was the one who may be said to be from the descendants of Adam.

The commentators are of the opinion that Idris was Enoch of the Old Testament, about whom it is said:
And Enoch lived sixty and five years, and begat Methuselah: And Enoch walked with God after he begat Methuselah three hundred years.... and he was not; for God took him. (Gen. 5: 21-24).
In Talmud, there are greater details about Enoch, which are briefly as follows: Before Noah when the descendants of Adam began to degenerate, the angel of God called to Enoch, who led a pious life away from the people, and said: O Enoch, arise, come out from seclusion, and go about among the people of the earth, guiding them to the path which they should follow and the ways which they should adopt.

Receiving this Divine Command, Enoch left his seclusion and gathered the people together and preached to them what he had been commanded, with the result that they listened to him and adopted the worship of God. Enoch ruled over mankind for 353 years: his rule was based on justice and truth, and consequently God favored mankind with all kinds of blessings." (H. Polano: The Talmud Selections, pp. 18-21)

Zul-Kifl is not the name but the title of a righteous man, which literally means a man of luck. Here it does not refer to worldly prosperity but to his high character and ranks in the Hereafter. He has also been mentioned by this title in( Surah Saad, 38: Ayat 48). There are different opinions about his identity and nationality. Some have regarded him as Zacharias (but this is not correct because Zacharias has been mentioned separately in ( verse 89). Others say that he was Elias, or Joshua, son of Nun, or Elisha, but this again is incorrect, because in (Surah Saad, 38 : Ayat 49) Elisha and Zul- Kifl have been mentioned as separate personalities. Some others say that he was Prophet Job’s son, named Bishr, who succeeded him as Prophet.

Allamah Alusi says: The Jews claim that he was Ezekiel who was appointed to Prophethood during the captivity (597 BC) of the Israelites and he performed his mission in a habitation by the side of the Chebar canal.

These conflicting opinions indeed confirm nothing. The modern commentators, however, are inclined to believe that he was Ezekiel, though there is no convincing argument about it. This opinion is sound because his description in this verse that he was a patient and righteous man and was blessed by God is fully confirmed by the Book of Ezekiel. He was one of those people who had been taken prisoner by Nebuchadnezzer at the downfall of Jerusalem, who settled the Israeli exiles at Tel-abib by the river Chebar in Iraq. Here, in 594 BC, Ezekiel was raised to Prophethood when he was hardly 30, and he continued preaching the message of God to the exiled Israelites as well as to the iniquitous people and rulers of Jerusalem for full 22 years. In the 9th year of his mission, his wife whom he called the desire of his eyes died, but when the people came to mourn her death, he warned them of the wrath of God and the impending disaster. (Chapter 24: 15-21). The Book of the Prophet Ezekiel in the Bible is one of those scriptures which appear to be genuine and divinely inspired.
( 86 )   And We admitted them into Our mercy. Indeed, they were of the righteous.
وَ ذَا النُّوۡنِ اِذْ ذَّهَبَ مُغَاضِبًا فَظَنَّ اَنۡ لَّنۡ نَّـقۡدِرَ عَلَيۡهِ فَنَادٰى فِى الظُّلُمٰتِ اَنۡ لَّاۤ اِلٰهَ اِلَّاۤ اَنۡتَ سُبۡحٰنَكَ ​ۖ اِنِّىۡ كُنۡتُ مِنَ الظّٰلِمِيۡنَ​ ۖ ​ۚ‏  
( 87 )   And [mention] the man of the fish, when he went off in anger and thought that We would not decree [anything] upon him. And he called out within the darknesses, "There is no deity except You; exalted are You. Indeed, I have been of the wrongdoers."
That is, Jonah, literally Dhun-Nun means the man of the fish. He was called so because he was devoured by a fish by the command of Allah. (Also See (Surah As-Saffaat, 37: Ayat 142) and (Surah Younus, 10: Ayat 98).

Prophet Jonah left his people before he received Allah’s command for migration. He presumed that he should leave, the place which was going to be visited by the scourge of Allah. This was not by itself an offence but it was an offence for a Prophet to leave the place of his mission without the permission of Allah.

He went away to the sea and took a ship, but apparently the sailors threw him out as a man of bad omen in a storm. He was swallowed by a big Fish (or Whale), but in the depth of the darkness, he cried to Allah and confessed his weakness. The "darkness" may be interpreted both physically and spiritually; physically, as the darkness of the night and the storm and the Fish's body; spiritually as the darkness in his soul, his extreme distress in the situation which he had brought on himself. Allah Most Gracious forgave him. He was cast out ashore; he was given the shelter of a plant in his state of mental and physical lassitude. He was refreshed and strengthened, and the work of his mission prospered. Thus he overcame all his disappointment by repentance and Faith, and Allah accepted him.
( 88 )   So We responded to him and saved him from the distress. And thus do We save the believers.
( 89 )   And [mention] Zechariah, when he called to his Lord, "My Lord, do not leave me alone [with no heir], while you are the best of inheritors."
Zakariya was a priest; both he and his wife were devout and punctilious in their duties. They were old, and they had no son. He was troubled in mind, not so much by the vulgar desire to have a son to carry on his line, but because he felt that his people were not unselfishly devout, and there would be no sincere work for Allah unless he could train up someone himself.
'It is not that I crave a personal heir to myself: all things go back to Thee, and Thou art the best of inheritors: but I see no one around me sincere enough to carry on my work for Thee; wilt Thou give me one whom I can train?' 
He was given a son Yahya (John the Baptist), who added to the devout reputation of the family, for he is called "noble, chaste, and a prophet,"
(Surah 3. Al-i'Imran 39: "As he stood praying in the sanctuary, the angels called out to him: 'Allah gives you good tidings of John (Yahya), who shall confirm a command of Allah , shall be outstanding among men, utterly chaste, and a Prophet from among the righteous.'"). 
( 90 )   So We responded to him, and We gave to him John, and amended for him his wife. Indeed, they used to hasten to good deeds and supplicate Us in hope and fear, and they were to Us humbly submissive.
“Cured his wife”: We cured his wife of sterility. As “You are the best of the Inheritors”, I shall have no grief even if You do not give me any child. (For further details, please see (Surah Aal-Imran, Ayats 37-41) and (Surah Maryam, Ayats 2-14) and the E.Ns thereof).

It will be worthwhile to reiterate the reasons why the stories of the Prophets have been cited in this Surah.

(1) The story of Prophet Zacharias has been cited to impress on the minds that all the Prophets were human beings and servants of Allah and had no tinge of Godhead in them. They had no power to bestow children upon others because they themselves had to pray to Allah for children for themselves.

(2) The story of Prophet Jonah has been cited to show that even a great Prophet like him did not go unnoticed when he committed an error in regard to Allah’s message. But when he repented, Allah, by His grace, delivered him alive from the belly of the fish.

(3) The mention of Prophet Job has been made to show that even Prophets were put to hard trials and afflictions and even they had to beg Allah to restore them to health, not to speak of curing others of diseases.

Along with these, the other important thing which is meant to be impressed is that all the Prophets believed in the doctrine of Tauhid. That is why they begged and prayed to One Allah alone to fulfill their needs and requirements. Though they met with trials, Allah helped them and granted their prayers in supernatural and miraculous ways.
( 91 )   And [mention] the one who guarded her chastity, so We blew into her [garment] through Our angel [Gabriel], and We made her and her son a sign for the worlds.
That is, Maryam (Mary, may Allah be pleased with her). Chastity was her special virtue: with a son of virgin birth, she and Jesus became a miracle to all nations. That was the virtue with which they (both Mary and Jesus) resisted evil.

It should be noted that the incident of the birth of Prophet Jesus (peace be upon him) was not different from that of Prophet Adam, because the wording of the Arabic text in the two cases is almost identical: See (Surah Suad, Ayats 71-72). Besides this in (verse 91), almost similar words have beets used in regard to the birth of Jesus (peace be upon him). See also (Surah An-Nisa, Ayat l71) and( Surah At-Tahrim, Ayat 12). Allah Himself has stated that the birth of Prophet Jesus (peace be upon him) was just like the birth of Prophet Adam: In the sight of Allah, the case of the birth of Jesus is like that of Adam, whom He created out of dust and said, Be, and he was. (Surah Aal-Imran, Ayat 59). In the light of these verses, we may conclude that Allah uses words like: We breathed into him or her of Our spirit for miraculous births. (For details please see (Surah An-Nisa E.Ns 212-213).

That is, The mother and the son were not partners of God nor had any share whatsoever in Godhead, but were a sign from among the signs of God. (See (Surah Maryam, E.N. 21).

Verses 92-93 Mankind is but one brotherhood

اِنَّ هٰذِهٖۤ اُمَّتُكُمۡ اُمَّةً وَّاحِدَةً  ​ۖ وَّاَنَا رَبُّكُمۡ فَاعۡبُدُوۡنِ‏  
( 92 )   Indeed this, your religion, is one religion, and I am your Lord, so worship Me.
Ummat: this is best translated by Brotherhood here. "Community", "race", and "nation," and "people" are words which import other ideas and do not quite correspond to "Ummat". "Religion" and "Way of Life" are derived meanings, which could be used in other passages, but are less appropriate here. Our attention has been drawn to people of very different temperaments and virtues, widely different in time, race, language, surroundings, history, and work to be performed, but forming the closest brotherhood as being men and women united in the highest service of Allah. They prefigure the final and perfected Brotherhood of Islam.
( 93 )   And [yet] they divided their affair among themselves, [but] all to Us will return.
In this verse, the addressees are the entire mankind. It means: O mankind, in reality all of you belonged to one community and had one and the same religion and all the Prophets brought one and the same creed which was this: Allah alone is the Lord of all mankind, therefore they should worship Him alone. But afterwards the people corrupted this creed and invented and adopted the things they liked and mixed their own theories, whims and practices in it. This brought into being countless communities and religions. Thus it is absolutely wrong to say that a particular Prophet was the founder of a particular religion and another of another, and so on. The very fact that different religions came into being at different periods of time, does not prove that the Prophets created these differences. It is obvious that the Prophets of God could not found different religions nor could they teach their followers to worship any beings other than Allah.

Allah's Message was and ever is one; and His Messengers treated it as one. It is people of narrower views who come later and trade on the earlier names, that break up the Message and the Brotherhood into jarring camps and sects.

Here we come to the end of Part II of the exegesis of Surah Al-Ambiyāʼ. For last ruku of the surah, please read Part III.

You may now like to listen to Arabic recitation of Surah Al-Ambiyāʼ with English subtitles:

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

Photo | References: | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 |
Reading the Holy Quran should be a daily obligation of a Muslim - Reading it with translation will make it meaningful. But reading its Exegesis / Tafsir will make you understand it fully.

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

If you like Islam: My Ultimate Decision, and to keep yourself updated on all our latest posts to know more about Islam, follow us on Facebook

Please share this page to your friends and family members through Facebook, WhatsApp or any means on Social Media so that they can also be benefited by it and better understand Islam and the Holy Qur'an - Insha Allah (Allah Willing) you shall be blessed with the best of both worlds.

Twitter Delicious Facebook Digg Stumbleupon Favorites More