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IN T H E N A M E O F

ALLAH
T H E M O S T G R A C IO U S , T H E M O S T M E R C IFU L

VOLUME 9

T a f s e e r a s - S a 'd i
Juz’ 25-27

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T itle: Tafseer as-S a 'd i V o l . 9 (J u z ' 2 5 -2 7 )

A u th o r: A b d u r-R a h m a n N a s ir a s - S a ‘di

E n g lish E d itio n 1 (2 0 1 8 )

T ra n sla to r: N a siru d d in a l-K h a tta b

E d ite d by: H u d a K h a ttab

L a y o u t D esig n : IIP H

C o v e r D esig n : S am o P ress G ro u p , B eiru t

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VOLUME 9

Ta f se e r a s - S a 'd i
Juz’ 25-27

t /I U d llll I l il l 4*1
••
(J ja J I j i 9 £ o * |J I ijin u i)
•• ** ** "
rv-ro rfi.

Abdur-Rahman Nasir as-Sa‘di


T ra n s la te d by
N asiruddin al-Khattab
E d ite d by
Huda Khattab

M F |T T | d x o J lA J ! j I a JI
_ ■ ■ ■ International Islamic P ublishing H ouse

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Copyright © 2018 International Islamic Publishing House
King Fahd National Library Cataloging-in-Publication Data

as-Sa'di, Abdur-Rahman Nasir


Tafseer as-Sa'di Vol. 9 (Juz' 25-27) / Abdur-Rahman Nasir as-Sa'di;
Nasiruddin al-Khattab — Riyadh, 2018
10 volumes

496 pp ; 21 cm

1- Qur'an - Interpretations I- Nasiruddin al-Khattab (translator)


II- Title

227.6 dc

Legal Deposit no. 1439/3410


ISBN Hardcover: 978-603-501-359-8 (set)
978-603-501-368-0 (Vol. 9)

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Contents

Pronunciation and Transliteration C h a r t..................... 15


Arabic honorific sy m b o ls................................................ 19
Hadith grade te r m s .......................................................... 20

41.
Soorat Fussilat
(continued)
Soorat Fussilat 47-48 ......................................................................... 21
Soorat Fussilat 49-51 ......................................................................... 23
Soorat Fussilat 52-54 ......................................................................... 25

42.
Soorat ash-Shoora
(\ Ia k k i)
Soorat ash-Shoora 1-9......................................................................... 28
Soorat ash-Shoora 10-12.................................................................... 32
Soorat ash-Shoora 1 3 ......................................................................... 36
Soorat ash-Shoora 14-15.................................................................... 38
Soorat ash-Shoora 1 6 ......................................................................... 42
Soorat ash-Shoora 17-18.................................................................... 43
Soorat ash-Shoora 19-20.................................................................... 44

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6 I Tafseeras-Sa‘di

Soorat ash-Shoora 21 -2 3 .................................................................... 46


Soorat ash-Shoora 2 4 ......................................................................... 50
Soorat ash-Shoora 2 5 -2 8 .................................................................... 52
Soorat ash-Shoora 2 9 ......................................................................... 55
Soorat ash-Shoora 3 0 -3 1 .................................................................... 56
Soorat ash-Shoora 3 2 -3 5.................................................................... 57
Soorat ash-Shoora 3 6-39.................................................................... 59
Soorat ash-Shoora 4 0 -4 3 .................................................................... 62
Soorat ash-Shoora 4 4 -4 6 .................................................................... 65
Soorat ash-Shoora 4 7 -4 8 .................................................................... 67
Soorat ash-Shoora 4 9 -5 0 .................................................................... 68
Soorat ash-Shoora 5 1-53 .................................................................... 69

43.
Soorat az-Zukhruf
(M a k k i)
Soorat az-Z ukhruf 1-5......................................................................... 73
Soorat az-Z ukhruf 6 -8 ......................................................................... 75
Soorat az-Z ukhruf 9 -1 4 ...................................................................... 75
Soorat az-Z ukhruf 15-25.................................................................... 78
Soorat az-Z ukhruf 2 6 -3 2.................................................................... 83
Soorat az-Z ukhruf 3 3-35.................................................................... 88
Soorat az-Z ukhruf 3 6 -3 9 .................................................................... 89
Soorat az-Z ukhruf 4 0 -4 5 .................................................................... 91
Soorat az-Z ukhruf 4 6 -5 6 .................................................................... 94
Soorat az-Z ukhruf 57-65.................................................................... 98
Soorat az-Z ukhruf 66-73.................................................................... 104
Soorat az-Z ukhruf 7 4-78.................................................................... 107

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Contents I 7

Soorat az-Z ukhruf 7 9-80 .................................................................... 108


Soorat az-Z ukhruf 81-83 ....................................................................... 109
Soorat az-Z ukhruf 84-89 ....................................................................... I l l

44.
S o o rat a d -D u k h a n
(M akki)
Soorat ad-D ukhan 1-1 6 ..........................................................................116
Soorat ad-D ukhan 17-21....................................................................... 122
Soorat ad-D ukhan 2 2 -2 9 .................................................................... 123
Soorat ad-D ukhan 3 0 -3 3 .................................................................... 125
Soorat ad-D ukhan 3 4 -3 7 .................................................................... 127
Soorat ad-D ukhan 3 8 -4 2 .................................................................... 128
Soorat ad-D ukhan 4 3 -5 0 .................................................................... 129
Soorat ad-D ukhan 5 1 -5 9 ....................................................................... 130

45.
S o o r a t a l- J a th iy a h
(M akki)
Soorat al-Jathiyah 1 -1 1 ....................................................................... 134
Soorat al-Jathiyah 1 2 -1 3 ....................................................................... 137
Soorat al-Jathiyah 1 4 -1 5 ....................................................................... 139
Soorat al-Jathiyah 1 6 -1 7....................................................................... 140
Soorat al-Jathiyah 18-19 ....................................................................... 141
Soorat al-Jathiyah 2 0 .............................................................................. 142
Soorat al-Jathiyah 2 1 .............................................................................. 143
Soorat al-Jathiyah 2 2 .............................................................................. 144
Soorat al-Jathiyah 2 3 -2 6 .................................................................... 144
Soorat al-Jathiyah 2 7 -3 7 .................................................................... 147

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8 I Tafseer as-Sa'di

46.
S o o r a t a l- A h q a f
(M akki)
Soorat al-A hqaf 1-3................................................................................ 153
Soorat al-A h q af 4 -6................................................................................ 155
Soorat al-A h q af 7-10.............................................................................. 157
Soorat al-A h q af 11-12............................................................................160
Soorat al-A h q af 13-14............................................................................162
Soorat al-A h q af 15-16............................................................................162
Soorat al-A h q af 17-19............................................................................165
Soorat al-A h q af 2 0 ................................................................................ 167
Soorat al-A hqaf 21 -26............................................................................168
Soorat al-A hqaf 27-28......................................................................... 172
Soorat al-A hqaf 29-32......................................................................... 173
Soorat al-A hqaf 3 3 ................................................................................ 176
Soorat al-A h qaf 34-35......................................................................... 176

47.
S o o rat M u h a m m a d
(M adani)
Soorat M uham m ad 1 - 3 ......................................................................... 179
Soorat M uham m ad 4 - 6 ......................................................................... 181
Soorat M uham m ad 7 - 9 ......................................................................... 183
Soorat M uham m ad 1 0 -1 1 .....................................................................185
Soorat M uham m ad 12............................................................................186
Soorat M uham m ad 13............................................................................186
Soorat M uham m ad 14............................................................................187
Soorat M uham m ad 15............................................................................188

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Contents I 9

Soorat M uham m ad 1 6 -1 7 .....................................................................189


Soorat M uham m ad 18......................................................................... 190
Soorat M uham m ad 19............................................................................191
Soorat M uham m ad 20-23 .................................................................. 194
Soorat M uham m ad 2 4 ............................................................................197
Soorat M uham m ad 25-28 .................................................................. 198
Soorat M uham m ad 2 9 -3 1 .....................................................................199
Soorat M uham m ad 3 2 ......................................................................... 201
Soorat M uham m ad 3 3 ......................................................................... 202
Soorat M uham m ad 34-35 .................................................................. 203
Soorat M uham m ad 36-38 .................................................................. 205

48.
S o o r a t a l- F a th
(M adani)
Soorat al-Fath 1 -3 ...................................................................................209
Soorat al-Fath 4 - 6 ...................................................................................211
Soorat al-Fath 7 ........................................................................................213
Soorat al-Fath 8 - 9 ...................................................................................214
Soorat al-Fath 10..................................................................................... 215
Soorat al-Fath 1 1 -1 3 .............................................................................. 216
Soorat al-Fath 14..................................................................................... 218
Soorat al-Fath 15..................................................................................... 219
Soorat al-Fath 1 6 -1 7 .............................................................................. 220
Soorat al-Fath 1 8 -2 1 .............................................................................. 222
Soorat al-Fath 22-23 ........................................................................... 225
Soorat al-Fath 2 4 -2 5 ........................................................................... 226
Soorat al-Fath 2 6 ................................................................................... 228

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10 | Tafseer as-Sa‘di

Soorat al-Fath 2 7 -2 8 ........................................................................... 229


Soorat al-Fath 2 9 .................................................................................. 231

49.
S o o r a t a l- H u ju r a t
(M adani)
Soorat al-H ujurat 1 - 3 ............................................................................246
Soorat al-H ujurat 4 - 5 ............................................................................249
Soorat al-H ujurat 6 ................................................................................ 250
Soorat al-H ujurat 7 - 8 ............................................................................251
Soorat al-H ujurat 9 - 1 0 ......................................................................... 253
Soorat al-H ujurat 1 1 .............................................................................. 256
Soorat al-H ujurat 1 2 .............................................................................. 257
Soorat al-H ujurat 1 3 .............................................................................. 259
Soorat al-H ujurat 1 4 - 1 8 ....................................................................... 260

50.
S o o rat Q af
(M akki)
Soorat Q a f 1-4..........................................................................................265
Soorat Q a f 5 ............................................................................................ 267
Soorat Q a f 6 -1 1 ....................................................................................... 268
Soorat Q a f 12-15.....................................................................................271
Soorat Q a f 16-18..................................................................................... 273
Soorat Q a f 19-22.................................................................................. 274
Soorat Q a f 2 3 -2 9 .................................................................................. 275
Soorat Q a f 30-3 5 .................................................................................. 278
Soorat Q a f 3 6 -3 7 .................................................................................. 280
Soorat Q a f 3 8 -4 0 .................................................................................. 282

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Contents | 11

Soorat Q a f 41 -4 5 .................................................................................. 282

51.
S o o ra t a d h -D h a riy a t
(M akki)
Soorat adh-D hariyat 1 - 6 ....................................................................... 285
Soorat adh-D hariyat 7 - 9 ....................................................................... 286
Soorat adh-D hariyat 1 0 -1 4 ............................................................... 287
Soorat adh-D hariyat 1 5 -1 9 .................................................................. 288
Soorat adh-D hariyat 20-23 ................................................................ 291
Soorat adh-D hariyat 24-30 ................................................................ 292
Soorat adh-D hariyat 31-37 ................................................................ 294
Soorat adh-D hariyat 38-40 ................................................................ 297
Soorat adh-D hariyat 41-42 ................................................................ 298
Soorat adh-D hariyat 43-45 ................................................................ 299
Soorat adh-D hariyat 4 6 ....................................................................... 300
Soorat adh-D hariyat 4 7 - 5 1 ................................................................ 300
Soorat adh-D hariyat 52-53 ................................................................ 303
Soorat adh-D hariyat 54-55 ................................................................ 304
Soorat adh-D hariyat 56-58 ................................................................ 305
Soorat adh-D hariyat 59-60 ................................................................ 307

52.
S o o r a t a t-T o o r
(M akki)
Soorat at-Toor 1-16................................................................................ 308
Soorat at-Toor 17-20.............................................................................. 313
Soorat at-T oor 2 1-28.............................................................................. 315
Soorat at-Toor 2 9 -4 3 ........................................................................... 318

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12 I Tafseer as-Sa'di

Soorat at-Toor 4 4 -4 6 ........................................................................... 324


Soorat at-Toor 4 7 -4 9 ........................................................................... 326

53.
S o o r a t a n - N a jm
(M akki)
Soorat an-N ajm 1-18.............................................................................. 328
Soorat an-N ajm 19-25......................................................................... 333
Soorat an-N ajm 26 .............................................................................. 336
Soorat an-N ajm 2 7 -3 0 ......................................................................... 337
Soorat an-N ajm 3 1-32 ......................................................................... 339
Soorat an-N ajm 33-62 ......................................................................... 341

54.
S o o r a t a l- Q a m a r
(M akki)
Soorat al-Q am ar 1 - 5 .............................................................................. 350
Soorat al-Q am ar 6 - 8 .............................................................................. 353
Soorat al-Q am ar 9 - 1 7 ............................................................................354
Soorat al-Q am ar 18-22 ...................................................................... 358
Soorat al-Q am ar 23-32 ...................................................................... 359
Soorat al-Q am ar 33-40 ...................................................................... 363
Soorat al-Q am ar 41-55 ...................................................................... 364

55.
S o o rat a r-R a h m a n
(M akki)
Soorat ar-Rahm an 1-13......................................................................... 370
Soorat ar-Rahm an 14-16.......................................................................374
Soorat ar-Rahm an 17-18 .......................................................................375

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Contents 9 13

Soorat ar-Rahm an 19-23.................................................................... 375


Soorat ar-Rahm an 2 4 -2 5 .................................................................... 376
Soorat ar-Rahm an 2 6 -2 8 .................................................................... 376
Soorat ar-Rahm an 2 9 -3 0 .................................................................... 377
Soorat ar-Rahm an 3 1 -3 2 .................................................................... 379
Soorat ar-Rahm an 3 3 -3 4 .................................................................... 379
Soorat ar-Rahm an 3 5 -3 6 .................................................................... 380
Soorat ar-Rahm an 3 7 -4 0 .................................................................... 381
Soorat ar-Rahm an 41 - 4 2 .................................................................... 382
Soorat ar-Rahm an 4 3 -4 5 .................................................................... 382
Soorat ar-Rahm an 4 6 -4 9 .................................................................... 383
Soorat ar-Rahm an 5 0 -5 3 .................................................................... 384
Soorat ar-Rahm an 5 4 -5 5 .................................................................... 384
Soorat ar-Rahm an 5 6 -5 9 .................................................................... 385
Soorat ar-Rahm an 6 0 -6 1 .................................................................... 386
Soorat ar-Rahm an 6 2 -6 5 .................................................................... 386
Soorat ar-Rahm an 6 6 -6 9 .................................................................... 387
Soorat ar-Rahm an 7 0 -7 5 .................................................................... 387
Soorat ar-Rahm an 7 6 -7 8 .................................................................... 388

56.
S o o r a t a l- W a q i'a h
(Makki)
Soorat al-W aqi‘ah 1-14......................................................................... 391
Soorat al-W aqi‘ah 15-16....................................................................... 393
Soorat al-W aqi‘ah 17-21....................................................................... 394
Soorat al-W aqi‘ah 2 2 -2 4 .................................................................... 395
Soorat al-W aqi‘ah 2 5 -2 6 .................................................................... 396

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14 I Tafseer as-Sa'di

Soorat al-W aqi‘ah 2 7 -3 4 .................................................................... 397


Soorat al-W aqi‘ah 35-40.................................................................... 398
Soorat al-W aqi ‘ah 41 -4 8 .................................................................... 399
Soorat al-W aqi‘ah 4 9 -5 0 .................................................................... 401
Soorat al-W aqi‘ah 51-56 .................................................................... 401
Soorat al-W aqi‘ah 57 ......................................................................... 403
Soorat al-W aqi‘ah 5 8 -6 2 .................................................................... 403
Soorat al-W aqi‘ah 63-67.................................................................... 404
Soorat al-W aqi‘ah 6 8 -7 0 .................................................................... 406
Soorat al-W aqi‘ah 7 1-74 .................................................................... 407
Soorat al-W aqi‘ah 7 5 -8 2 .................................................................... 408
Soorat al-W aqi‘ah 8 3-87.................................................................... 411
Soorat al-W aqi‘ah 8 8-96.................................................................... 411

57.
S o o r a t a l- H a d e e d
(M adam )
Soorat al-H adeed 1 - 6 ........................................................................... 415
Soorat al-H adeed 7-11 ......................................................................... 418
Soorat al-H adeed 1 2 - 1 5 .......................................................................423
Soorat al-H adeed 1 6 - 1 7 .......................................................................426
Soorat al-H adeed 1 8 - 1 9 .......................................................................428
Soorat al-H adeed 20-21 .................................................................... 430
Soorat al-H adeed 22-24 .................................................................... 433
Soorat al-H adeed 25-27 .................................................................... 435
Soorat al-H adeed 28-29 .................................................................... 439

G lo s s a r y o f Is la m ic T e r m s ........................................................... 442

I n d e x ........................................................................................................448

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Pronunciation and
Transliteration Chart

Trans-
Arabic
Pronunciation literated
script
form
1 short ‘a ’, as in cat a
—I longer ‘a ’, as in cab (not as in cake) a
Ibl as in bell, rubber and tab b
O l\J as in tap, m ustard and sit t
h or t
takes the sound o f the preceding
(when
diacritical m ark som etim es ending in h
followed
0 (when in pausal form): ah, ih or ooh; or
by another
atu(n), ati(n) or ata(n)
Arabic
w hen uninterrupted
word)
& /th/ as in thing, m aths and w ealth th
c 1)1 as in ja m , ajar and age j
a ‘harsher’ sound than the English
c initial /h/, and m ay occur m edially and h
in w ord-final position as well
as in Bach (in G erm an); m ay occur
kh
t initially and m edially as well
/d/ as in do, m uddy and red d
as in this, fa th e r and sm ooth dh

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16 I Tafseeras-Sa'di

Trans-
Arabic
Pronunciation literated
script
form
/r/ as in raw, a rid and war, may
j also be a rolled ‘r \ as pronounced r
in Spanish
j /z/ as in zoo, easy and gaze z
a- /s/ as in so, m essy and grass s
*>
a" as in ship, ashes and rush sh
no close equivalent in English,
but m ay be approxim ated by
s
pronouncing it as /sw / or /s/ farther
back in the m outh
no close equivalent in English, but m ay
be approxim ated by pronouncing it as d
/d/ farther back in the m outh
no close equivalent in English, but may
J* be approxim ated by pronouncing it as t
/{/ farther back in the mouth
no close equivalent in English, but may
Ji be approxim ated by pronouncing ‘th e’ dh
farther back in the mouth
no close equivalent in English: a guttur-

L al sound in the back o f the throat
no close equivalent in English,
but m ay be closely approxim ated
i gh
by pronouncing it like the French III in
‘rouge’
/f/ as in fill, effort and m u ff f

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Pronunciation and transliteration chart 1 17

Trans-
Arabic
Pronunciation literated
script
form •
no close equivalent in English, but m ay
<3 be approxim ated by pronouncing it as q
Dd farther back in the mouth
i) Ikl as in king, buckle and tack k
/l/ as in lap, halo; in the w ord A llah, it
J l
becom es velarized as in ball
f /m / as in m en, sim ple and ram m
j In/ as in net, ant and can n
/h/ as in hat; unlike /h/ in English, in
A. —0 —A Arabic /h/ is pronounced in m edial and h
w ord-final positions as well
J as in w et and aw ay w
J long ‘u ’, as in boot and too 00
4 as in y a r d and mayo y
4 long ‘e ’, as in eat, b e e f and see ee
glottal stop: m ay be closely
approxim ated by pronouncing it like ‘t ’ (om itted
* in the C ockney English in initial
pronunciation o f butter, bu 'er, position)
or the stop sound in uh-oh!

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18 | Tafseeras-Sa'di

D ip h th on gs

Trans-
Arabic
Pronunciation literated
script
form
long ‘o ’, as in owe, boat and go au, aw

long ‘a ’, as in aid, rain and say ay, ai, ei

Diacritical m arks (tashkeel)

Trans-
Name of
Pronunciation literated
mark
form
very short ‘a ’ or schwa a
(unstressed vowel)
fathah
shorter version o f ee or schwa i
(unstressed vowel)
kasrah
> shorter version o f oo u

dam m ah
a doubled consonant is stressed in the double
w ord, and the length o f the sound is letter
shaddah also doubled
no vowel sound betw een consonants or absence o f
at the end o f a word vowel
sukoon

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Arabic honorific symbols

Subhanahu wa Ta ‘aid The Exalted

salla Allahu ‘alayhi wa sallam Blessings and peace be upon


him

m ) ‘alayhi as-salam M ay peace be upon him

radiya Allahu ‘anhu M ay A llah be pleased w ith


him

(i3§e>) radiya Allahu 'anha M ay A llah be pleased w ith


her

(t$ |l) radiya Allahu ‘anhum a M ay A llah be pleased w ith


both o f them

(Jffe ) radiya Allahu ‘anhum M ay A llah be pleased w ith


all o f them

(^g > ) radiya Allahu ‘anhunna M ay A llah be pleased w ith


all o f them (fem ales only)

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H adith grade terms

Sound: saheeh

Reliable: hasan

Weak: d a 'e e f

Odd: ghareeb

Authentic: includes sound, reliable, or any grade in betw een

Acceptable: sakat ‘anhu; the grader o f the hadith did not com m ent
on it, m eaning that he found nothing unacceptable in it

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Soorat Fussilat
(continued)

O 0

( t A - t V r o iii
41:47. He alone has knowledge o f the Hour. No fruit emerges from
its sheath, nor does any female conceive or give birth, except
with His knowledge. On the day when Allah will call to them,
[saying]: Where are My [so-called] partners? they will say: We
declare to You that none o f us can bear witness to that.1
41:48. Those [false gods] whom they used to call upon before will be
lost from them, and they will realise that they have no escape.

H ere Allah (Subhanahu wa Ta ‘aid - G lorified and Exalted is He)


tells us o f the vastness o f His know ledge and that He alone possesses
exclusive know ledge that no one else could know:
«{He alone has know ledge o f the Hour]* that is, all o f creation
- the M essengers, the angels and others - refer know ledge thereof

1 The meanings of the verses of the Qur’an in this book (with some minor
changes to the punctuation) have been translated by the translator. (Editor)

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22 | Tafseer as-Sa'di J u z’25

to A llah (4c), and they adm it that they have no w ay o f know ing
about it.
«(No fruit em erges from its sheath]? - this includes the fruits o f all
trees, in all lands, o f all kinds. No fruit o f any tree em erges but He
know s about it in detail.
^ n o r does any female]? am ong the children o f A dam ( ‘alayhi
as-salam - peace be upon him ) or any kind o f anim als ^conceive]?
except with His know ledge
*for give birth, except with His knowledge^. So how can the polytheists
regard as equal to Allah B g) that w hich has no knowledge and cannot
hear or see?
«fOn the day when Allah will call to them ^ nam ely the polytheists,
on the Day o f Resurrection, rebuking them and exposing their lies.
He will say to them: ^W here are My [so-called] partners]? who you
claim ed were My partners, and you worshipped them, and you argued
in defence o f your actions and opposed the M essengers for the sake
o f those false gods?
^th ey will say]?, acknow ledging the falseness o f their gods and the
falseness o f their association o f them with Allah: ^ We declare to You
that none o f us can bear w itness to that]? that is, we announce to You,
O our Lord, so bear w itness that none o f us can testify to the validity
o f those gods and so-called partners; now we all adm it the invalidity
o f w orshipping them , and we disavow them. Hence A llah says:
^T hose [false gods] w hom they used to call upon]? besides Allah
^before will be lost from them]? that is, all their beliefs and deeds
that they spent their lives devoting to the w orship o f gods other than
Allah, thinking that it w ould benefit them and w ould w ard o ff the
punishm ent from them , and that those false gods w ould intercede
for them with Allah, will be lost from them. All their efforts will be
in vain, and their thoughts and beliefs will be proven wrong; their
so-called partners will not avail them anything.

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Soorat Fussilat (49-51) | 23

^and they will realise}* and know for certain in that situation
«fthat they have no escape)* that is, they have no one to save them,
no helper and no refuge.
These are the consequences for those who associate others with
Allah, which Allah explains to His slaves so that they m ay bew are
o f ascribing partners to Him.

0 0

41:49. Man never grows weary o f asking for good things, but if
misfortune befalls him, he is filled with despair and becomes
despondent.
41:50. But if We give him a taste o f mercy from Us after adversity had
befallen him, he will surely say: This is my due, and I do not
think that the Hour will ever come; but if I am brought back to
my Lord, I will have with Him the best. We will surely inform
those who disbelieve about all that they did, and We will surely
cause them to taste a harsh punishment.
41:51. W hen We bestow blessings upon man, he turns away and
distances him self [from Us], but if misfortune befalls him, he
resorts to offering a great deal o f supplication.

Here Allah tells us o f the nature o f man and that he has no patience
to deal with either tim es o f ease or tim es o f hardship, except those
whom Allah helps to attain perfection, as He says:

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24 | Tafseeras-Sa'di J u z '25

^M an never grow s w eary o f asking for good things)* that is, he


n ever tires o f callin g upon A llah, asking H im for riches, w ealth,
children and other w orldly desires, and he keeps striving for that,
but he is not content w ith a sm all or great am ount o f that. No m atter
w hat he attains, he alw ays w ants more.
«fbut if m isfortune^ that is, harm such as sickness, poverty or any
kind o f calam ity ^befalls him , he is fdled with despair and becom es
despondent}* that is, he despairs o f the m ercy o f Allah (4s) and thinks
that this calam ity is the one that will destroy him, and he becom es
confused because the m easures he took did not lead to the results he
expected.
This is the case with all people except those who are patient and
do righteous deeds: if good things happen to them and blessings come
to them , they give thanks to A llah, but they fear that the blessings o f
A llah m ay lead to them getting carried aw ay in sin or that they signal
a respite before punishm ent befalls them.
But if a calam ity befalls them , affecting them selves, their wealth
or their children, they show patience and hope for the grace o f their
Lord, and they do not despair.
Then Allah (4?) says: ^B ut if We give him}* that is, man w ho never
grows w eary o f asking for good things, but if m isfortune befalls him,
he is filled with despair and becom es despondent,
^ a taste o f m ercy from Us)* after that m isfortune that befell him, such
as if Allah heals him from his sickness, or m akes him independent o f
m eans after he had been poor, he does not give thanks to A llah (4s);
rather he transgresses and com m its sin, and says: ^T his is m y due)*
that is, it has com e to me because I am qualified for it and I deserve it,
^an d I do not think that the H our will ever com e^. This is denial
o f the resurrection on his part, and ingratitude for the blessings and
m ercy o f v/hich A llah has given him a taste.
^b u t if I am brought back to m y Lord, I will have with Him the
best)* that is, assum ing that the Hour does come and that I am brought

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Soorat Fussilat (52-54) | 25

back to m y Lord, then I w ill have the best w ith Him; ju st as I had
blessings in this world, I will have blessings in the hereafter.
This is the greatest audacity and speaking about A llah w ithout
knowledge. Hence Allah warns him by saying: <|We will surely inform
those who disbelieve about all that they did, and We will surely cause
them to taste a harshp that is, very severe dpunishm entp.
tfW hen We bestow blessings upon m an ^ such as good health,
provision and so on
«fhe turns away)* from his Lord and from giving thanks to Him
<^and distan ces h im se lf [from Us])* ou t o f self-ad m iratio n and
arrogance.
^b u t if m isfortune befalls him)» such as sickness, poverty and so on,
<|he resorts to offering a great deal o f supplication)* because he has
no patience. So he does not show patience at tim es o f hardship and
he does not show gratitude at tim es o f ease, except those w hom Allah
guides and blesses.

41:52. Say: What do you think, if it [the Q ur’an] is really from Allah
but you reject it? Who is further astray than one who goes much
too far in opposition?
41:53. We will show them Our signs in the universe and in their own
selves, until it becomes clear to them that it [the Q ur’an] is the
truth. Is it not sufficient that your Lord is Witness over all things?

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26 I Tafseer as-Sa‘di J u z ’25

4 1:54. Indeed they are in doubt concerning the meeting with their Lord;
verily He encompasses all things.

^Say)* to th ese people w ho reject the Q u r’an and hasten to


disbelieve:
^W h at do you think, if it [the Q u r’an] is really from Allah)*, beyond
any shadow o f a doubt,
d but you reject it? W ho is further astray than one who goes m uch
too far in opposition?^ that is, one w ho is stubborn tow ards A llah
and His M essenger (salla Allahu ‘alayhi wa sallam - blessings and
peace be upon him ), for the truth has becom e clear to you, but you
turned aw ay from it, and you have chosen not truth but falsehood
and ignorance. Hence you are the furthest astray o f people and the
w orst in wrongdoing.
If you doubt the soundness o f the Q u r’an and w hat it really is, then
A llah will establish p ro o f for you and will show you His signs in the
universe, such as the signs in heaven and on earth, and w hat Allah
(3g) will bring about o f m ajor events that point to the truth, for the
one who has deep insight and is able to see the truth
^and in their ow n selves)* such as w hat their own bodies contain o f
the brilliant signs o f Allah and w onders o f His design and am azing
might. A nd there are m ore signs in the punishm ents that overcom e
the disbelievers and the victories that are granted to the believers,
^until it becom es clear to them)* through these signs, beyond a doubt,
^that it [the Q u r’an] is the truth)* and that w hat it contains is true.
A nd Allah indeed did that; He showed His slaves signs through
w hich it becam e clear to them that it was the truth. B ut it is Allah
W ho guides to the path o f faith w hom ever He will, and He causes
w hom ever He will to fail to see the truth.
^ Is it not sufficient that your Lord is W itness over all things?^
that is, is the testim ony o f Allah, that the Q u r’an is true and that the
one w ho b ro ught it is truthful, not sufficient for them ? F or A llah

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Soorat Fuss Hat (52-54) | 27

has testified that the M essenger («i§) w as indeed sincere, and He


is the m ost truthful o f witnesses. He supported him and helped him
in a m anner that confirm ed His verbal testim ony, if anyone has any
doubts about it.
^Indeed they are in doubt concerning the m eeting with their Lord)*
that is, they are in doubt about the resurrection, for they do not believe
in anything but the realm o f this world. Hence they do not believe in
the hereafter and they do not pay attention to it.
^verily He encom passes all things)* by His know ledge, pow er and
might.

T his is the end o f the com m entary on Soorat Fussilat.


A ll praise and thanks are for A llah, and m ay the b lessin g s and
peace o f A llah be upon Prophet M uham m ad ( ^ ) , his fam ily, and
his C om panions abundantly until the D ay o f Judgem ent.

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42.
Soorat ash-Shoora
(M akki)

In the name o f Allah,


the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful

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42:1. Ha’. Meem.
42:2. ‘Ayn. Seen. Qaf.

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Soorat ash-Shoora (1-9) | 29

42:3. Thus does Allah, the Almighty, the Most Wise, send revelation
to you [O Muhammad], as He did to those who came before
you.
42:4. To Him belongs all that is in the heavens and all that is on earth,
and He is the Most High, the Most Great.
42:5. The heavens are almost rent asunder [because o f the might and
majesty o f the One Who is] above them, and the angels glorify
and praise their Lord, and pray for forgiveness for those who
are on earth. Verily it is Allah Who is the Oft-Forgiving, Most
Merciful.
42:6. As for those who take others besides Him as protectors, Allah
is watching them, and you are not their keeper.
42:7. Likewise We have revealed to you an Arabic Q ur’an, so that you
may warn the Mother o f Cities [Makkah] and all those around
it, and warn them o f the Day o f Gathering, concerning which
there is no doubt, when some will be in paradise and some will
be in the raging fire.
42:8. If Allah had so willed, He would have made them a single
community, but Allah admits whomever He wills to His mercy,
and the wrongdoers will have neither protector nor helper.
42:9. How could they take others as protectors besides Him? But
Allah alone is the Protector, for it is He Who brings the dead to
life, and He has power over all things.

Here Allah (t$g) tells us that He has revealed this m ighty Q u r’an
to a noble Prophet ( ^ ) , as He sent revelation to the Prophets and
M essengers who cam e before him. This is highlighting His favour
and blessing by sending down the Books and sending the M essengers
for people o f both the past and the future. M uham m ad ($£§) is not
unprecedented am ong the M essengers, for his path is the path o f
those w ho cam e before him , and his character and attitude are in
harm ony w ith those o f the previous M essengers. The m essage he

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30 | Tafseer as-Sa'di J u z ’25

has brought is sim ilar to that w hich they brought, for they are all
truthful and sincere, and it is all revelation from One W ho is divine,
W hose attributes are divinity, great m ajesty and im m ense wisdom .
Both realm s, upper and lower, are His dom inion, under His control
and subject to His com m ands.
ejand He is the M ost High)? in His essence and status, for everything
is under His control
dthe M ost Great)? and by His greatness,
^T h e heavens are alm ost rent asunder [because o f the m ight and
m ajesty o f the One W ho is] above them)?, despite their great size
«fand the angels)? that is, the noble angels w ho are close to A llah,
w ho subm it to His greatness, are subject to His m ight and are hum ble
before His M ajesty
^g lo rify and praise th eir Lord)?, declarin g H im to be above all
shortcom ings, ascribing all perfection to Him
([and pray for forgiveness for those w ho are on earth)? for w hat they
do that is not befitting to the m ight and m ajesty o f the Lord, even
though He is ?fthe O ft-Forgiving, M ost M erciful^; were it not for His
forgiveness and mercy, He would have hastened to send an eradicating
punishm ent upon the people.
The fact that He describes H im self in these terms, after stating that
He sent revelation to all the M essengers in general, and to M uhammad
( l i t ) in particular, indicates that this Holy Q u r’an contains evidence,
proofs and signs that point to the perfect nature o f the C reator and
attribute to H im these sublim e nam es, w hich fill the heart w ith
know ledge o f H im , love for H im , and veneration and respect for
Him, and lead one to devote all kinds o f w orship, both outw ard and
inward, to Him alone.
One o f the gravest kinds o f w rongdoing and m ost abhorrent kinds
o f speech is ascribing rivals to Allah that have no pow er to benefit or
harm; rather they are created beings that are in need o f Allah in all
their affairs. Hence A llah says in the next verse:

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Soorat ash-Shoora d -9 ) | 31

efAs for those who take others besides Him as protectors^, directing
their w orship to them and obeying them as they should w orship and
obey Allah, they are indeed turning to falsehood, for these are not
protectors in a true sense.
^A llah is w atching th em ^ and recording their deeds, and He will
requite them for all their deeds, both good and evil
fjand you are not their k eeper^ so you will not be asked about their
deeds; rather your role is to convey the m essage and you have done
what is required o f you.
Then A llah m entions His blessings to His M essenger («|§) and
to hum ankind, as He has sent dow n *[an A rabic Q u r’an)* w ith clear
words and m eanings
f{so that you m ay warn the M other o f Cities [M akkah] and all those
around it)* that is, the cities o f the A rabs, then this w arning is to go
further, to all o f hum ankind
^and w a m ^ people ^ o f the Day o f Gathering)* on w hich A llah will
gather together the first and the last; and so that you m ay inform them
that ffthere is no doubt)* concerning it, and that on that day they will
be divided into tw o categories:
^som e will be in paradise)* - they are the ones w ho believed in Allah
and believed the M essengers
*fand som e will be in the raging fire^ - they are the various types o f
disbelievers.
However, if Allah had so w illed, He could have m ade them ^ a
single community)*, all following guidance, because He is Omnipotent
and nothing is beyond Him. But He w anted to include in His m ercy
w hom ever He will o f the elite o f His creation.
As for the w rongdoers who are not fit for anything good, they are
deprived o f divine mercy, and they will have, besides Allah, ^neither
protector)* to protect them and take care o f them so that they can
attain what is good
^nor helper^ to ward o ff from them w hat is bad.

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32 I Tafseer as-Sa'di Juz'25

Those who ^take others as protectors besides Him)? and worship


them have com m itted the m ost grievous error, for it is Allah W ho is
the protector W hose protection a person should seek by w orshipping
Him, obeying Him and seeking to draw near to Him by m eans o f
w hatever acts o f worship o f all kinds he m ay do. Allah protects and
takes care o f His slaves in general term s by m eans o f His control and
by causing to happen w hatever He decrees for them. And He protects
and takes care o f His believing slaves in particular, by bringing them
forth from darkness to light, caring for them , show ing kindness to
them and helping them in all their affairs.
^fo r it is He W ho brings the dead to life, and He has pow er over
all th in g s^ it is He W ho has control over life and death, His will is
alw ays done and He has pow er over all things. So it is He alone, with
no partner or associate, W ho deserves to be worshipped.

( t t —\ • Jl oj j **) ^

42:10. Whatever the subject o f your differences, it is for Allah to judge.


That is Allah my Lord, in Whom 1 put my trust and to Whom I
turn,
42:11. the Originator o f the heavens and the earth. He has given you
spouses o f your own kind, and o f livestock [He has given you]
pairs [of male and female]; by this means He causes you to
multiply. There is nothing like unto Him, and He is the All-
Hearing, All-Seeing.

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Soorat ash-Shoora (10-12) | 33

42:12. To Him belong the keys o f the heavens and the earth; He grants
abundant provision to whomever He wills, or gives it in scant
measure. Verily He has knowledge o f all things.

Whatever the subject o f your differences)* concerning fundamental


or m inor issues o f your religion on w hich you do not agree,
^ it is for A llah to judge)* that is, it is to be referred to His Book and
to the Sunnah o f His M essenger (*|§). W hatever ruling they give is
the truth, and w hatever is different from that is false.
^T hat is Allah my Lord)* that is, ju st as He is the Lord, the Creator, the
Provider, the Controller, so too He is the Judge W ho judges between
His slaves according to His laws in all their affairs.
W hat this verse im plies is that the ag reem ent o f the U m m ah
constitutes definitive proof, because Allah did not instruct us to refer
to Him except concerning that in which we differ. As for that on which
we are agreed, the unanim ous agreem ent o f the Um m ah is sufficient
proof, because the Um m ah as a w hole is infallible and cannot agree
upon error; its consensus m ust be in agreem ent w ith w hat is in the
Book o f Allah and the Sunnah o f His M essenger (*!§).
^in W hom I put m y trust^ that is, in my heart I rely on Him to
bring w hat is beneficial and w ard o ff w hat is harmful, and I trust Him
to help me with that
«fand to W hom I turn)* that is, I turn to Him with my heart and soul,
in obedience to Him and w orshipping Him.
A llah often m entions these tw o principles (trusting A llah and
turning to H im ) in His Book, because w ith both o f them together
one may attain perfection that is not possible w ithout them or without
one o f them , such as in the verses in w hich He says:
^Y ou [A lone] w e w orship, and You [A lone] w e ask for help.)*
(al-Fatihah 1: 5)
- and:
C .. So worship Him [alone] and put your trust in H im ... )* (Hood 11:123)

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34 I Tafseer as-Sa'di J u z ’25

ffthe O riginator o f the heavens and the earths? that is, the One W ho
created them by His m ight, will and wisdom.
^H e has given you spouses o f your own kind)? so that you m ay find
com fort in them and they m ay produce offspring for you, and bring
other benefits to you.
^and o f livestock [He has given you] pairs [o f m ale and female])?
that is, o f all types o f livestock he has given you pairs, m ale and
female, so that they m ay continue and increase in num bers, bringing
you many benefits. Allah has made that for your sake and as a blessing
to you. Hence He says:
^ b y this m eans He causes you to multiply)? that is, He causes you
and your livestock to multiply, by m eans o f giving you spouses from
am ong yourselves and giving you livestock in pairs.
^T here is nothing like unto Him)? that is, nothing o f His creation
resem bles Him and nothing can m atch Him, w hether in His essence,
His nam es, His attributes or His deeds, because all o f His nam es are
beautiful, all His attributes are attributes o f perfection and might, and
by m eans o f His deeds He brought into being m ighty creations, with
no partner. So there is nothing like unto Him, because He is unique
and He alone is perfect in all aspects.
^and He is the All-Hearing)? W ho hears all voices, in all languages,
expressing all kinds o f needs
^All-Seeing)? W ho sees the m ovem ent o f a black ant in a dark night
on a solid rock, and He sees nourishm ent flowing through the veins o f
tiny creatures and he sees the sap flowing in the branches o f the trees.
T his and sim ilar verses o ffer evidence for the view s o f ah l
as-Sunnah wal-jam a 'ah2 who affirm the divine attributes and deny
that His attributes in any w ay resem ble those o f created beings. It

2 W h erever p o ssib le , A rabic term s h ave b een translated into E n glish .


In ca ses w here w e h ave ch o sen to retain the A rabic, the transliterated
word or phrase is sh ow n in italics the first tim e it appears in the text. =

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Soorat ash-Shoora (10-12) | 35

offers a refutation o f those who liken the divine attributes to those


o f created beings, in the w ords ^T here is nothing like unto Him)*;
and it offers a refutation o f those who deny the divine attributes (by
interpreting them in a m anner that differs from the apparent meaning),
in the w ords «fand He is the A ll-H earing, All-Seeing)*.
^To H im belong the keys o f the heavens and the earth)* that
is, to Him belongs the dom inion o f the heavens and the earth, and
in His hand are the keys o f m ercy, p rovisio n and blessing, both
visible and hidden. All creatures are in need o f Allah and need His
help to attain that w hich is in their best interests and w ard o ff that
w hich is harm ful, in all situations. N o one has any control over
anything at all.
It is Allah (3s) W ho gives and w ithholds, causes harm and brings
benefit; there is no blessing that people have but it is from Him, and
no one wards o ff harm except Him.
^W hatever Allah opens up for people o f His mercy, none can withhold
it, and w hatever He w ithholds, none can grant it th ereafter... )* (Fatir
35: 2)
Hence Allah says here: «(He grants abundant provision to whomever
He w ills^ that is, He gives a great deal o f different kinds o f provision,
how ever He wills
^ o r gives it in scant measure)* th at is, He restricts provision to
w hom ever He w ills, so that it is ju s t as m uch as he needs, and no
more. All o f that is in accordance w ith His know ledge and wisdom .
Hence He says:
^Verily He has know ledge o f all things^, so He know s the situation
o f His slaves and gives each one w hat is appropriate for him , in
accordance with His w isdom and as dictated by His will.

= T he term is also defined in the g lo ssa ry found at the end o f this book.
(Editor)

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36 1 Tafseer as-Sa'di J u z ’25

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42:13. He has prescribed for you the same religion as that which He
enjoined upon Nooh - and that which We have revealed to you
[O Muhammad] - and that which We enjoined upon Ibraheem,
Moosa and ‘Eesa: that you should uphold the religion and not
be divided therein. What you are calling the polytheists to is
very hard for them. Allah brings close to Him self whomever
He wills, and He guides to Him self whoever turns to Him.

This is the greatest blessing that A llah has bestow ed upon His
slaves, that He has prescribed for them the best and purest o f religions,
namely the religion o f Islam, which Allah has prescribed for the chosen
ones am ong His slaves. Indeed Allah prescribed it for the best o f the
best, the elite o f the elite, nam ely the M essengers o f strong resolve
who are m entioned in this verse, who are the highest o f hum ankind
in status and the m ost perfect in all aspects. The religion which Allah
has prescribed for them must be appropriate to their circumstances and
com patible with their perfection. Indeed the only reason why Allah
perfected them and selected them is their adherence to it. Were it not
for the Islam ic religion, no one w ould ever be elevated in honour,
for it is the essence o f happiness and the prerequisite for attaining
perfection. Islam is w hat is contained in this noble Book, and it is
w hat the Book calls to o f affirm ing divine oneness, and righteous
deeds, m anners and behaviour.
Hence Allah says: ^th at you should uphold the religion^ that is,
He has instructed you to uphold all the teachings o f the religion, both

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Soorat ash-Shoora (13) | 37

fundamental and minor. You should uphold the religion yourselves and
call others to do so, and you should help one another in righteousness
and piety, but do not help one another in sin and transgression.
^and not be divided therein)* that is, so that you m ay be in agreem ent
with regard to the fundam ental and m inor issues o f religion. And be
careful lest some issues cause division am ong you and cause you to
become sects and groups, opposing one another, at the tim e w hen you
agree on the fundam entals o f your religion.
W hat helps in being united and avoiding division is w hat the
Law giver has prescribed o f general gatherings, such as the gatherings
o f Hajj, Eid, Jum u 'ah, the five daily prayers, assembling for jihad, and
other acts o f worship that cannot be done properly except by com ing
together and not being divided.
*(What you are calling the polytheists to is very hard for them)*
that is, it is extrem ely difficult for them , because you are calling them
to show devotion to Allah alone. This is like w hat Allah tells us about
them elsewhere:
^W hen A llah alone is m entioned, the hearts o f those w ho do not
believe in the hereafter shrink w ith aversion, but when [gods] other
than Him are m entioned, they rejoice.)* (az-Zumar 39. 45)
- and He tells us that they said:
^W hat! Has he m ade all the gods into one G od? This is indeed m ost
strange!)* (Sad38: 5)
^A llah brings close to H im self w hom ever He w ills^ that is, He
chooses from am ong His creation w hoever He know s is fit to be
chosen to convey His m essage or to be His close friend. One aspect
o f this is that He chose this U m m ah and favoured it over all other
nations, and He chose for it the best o f religions.
*(and He guides to H im self w hoever turns to Him)*; this is the
m easure that a person may take so as to attain the guidance o f Allah
(4c), nam ely turning to his Lord, so that his heart becom es attached

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38 | Tafseeras-Sa'di Juz ’25

to Him and He becom es his aim and goal. For a person to strive with
good intentions, seeking guidance, is one o f the things that m ake it
easy for him to attain it, as Allah (4c) says elsewhere:
^W ith w hich Allah guides all who seek His good pleasure to ways
o f peace and sa fe ty ... p (al-Ma 'idah 5:16)
This verse, w hich tells us that Allah ^guides to H im self w hoever
turns to H im ^, along with the verse:
«f.. .and follow the way o f those who turn to M e ...^ (Luqmdn 31. 15)
- and knowing the character o f the Sahabah {radiya Allahu ‘anhum
- m ay A llah be pleased with all o f them ) and how sincere they were
in turning to A llah, indicates that their view s constitute sh a r'i proof,
especially the Rightly-G uided C aliphs (^ |& ).

42:14. They [the People o f the Book] did not differ except after
knowledge had come to them, out o f mutual envy and rivalry.
Were it not for a prior decree from your Lord, [giving them
respite] for an appointed term, a decisive judgem ent would
already have been passed between them. Verily those who
inherited the Book after them3 are in grave doubt concerning it.

3 This refers to the People of the Book at the time when this verse was
revealed.

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Soorat ash-Shoora (14-15) | 39

42:15. Therefore call people [to the religion that Allah prescribed],
and keep to the straight path as you have been commanded, and
do not follow their desires; and say: I believe in all the Books
that Allah has sent down, and 1 have been commanded to deal
justly with you [all]. Allah is our Lord and your Lord. We have
our deeds and you have your deeds. Let there be no [further]
argument between us and you;4 Allah will bring us together,
and unto Him is the return [of all].

Having com m anded the M uslim s to be united in their religion, and


forbidden them to be divided, here Allah tells them that they should
not take it for granted that they will rem ain united ju st because Allah
has sent dow n the Book to them , for the People o f the B ook did
not becom e divided until A llah sent down to them the Book which
required them to be united, but they did the opposite o f w hat their
Book instructed them to do. All o f that stem m ed from transgression
and enm ity on their part, because o f the m utual rivalry and envy
am ong them. G rudges and ill feeling arose am ong them , w hich led
to dissent and differences. So bew are, O M uslim s, lest you becom e
like them.
^W ere it not for a p rio r d ecree from y o u r L o rd ^ to delay the
punishm ent that w ould destroy them
dfor an appointed term, a decisive judgem ent would already have been
passed between them b. But His wisdom and forbearance dictated that
the punishm ent should be delayed in their case.
^Verily those who inherited the Book after them ^ that is, those who
becam e their successors, the people o f know ledge am ong them ,
^are in grave doubt concerning it^ that is, they have many doubts that
cause differences am ong them . Just as their forebears differed out o f
m utual envy and rivalry, their successors differed because o f doubts,
and all o f them are partners in blam ew orthy differences.

4 A fter the truth has been established, there is no room for further argument.

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^ T h e refo re call people)? to the true religion and the straight


path that Allah revealed in His Books and with w hich He sent His
M essengers. Call your nation to it and urge them to follow it, and
strive against those w ho do not accept it.
^ a n d keep to the straig h t path)? y o u rs e lf ^ a s you have been
com m anded)? that is, by com plying w ith the com m ands o f A llah,
w ithout going to extrem es or being negligent, in obedience to the
com m ands o f A llah and heeding His prohibitions, and persist in that.
Thus Allah instructed him to perfect him self by adhering to the straight
path, and to perfect others by calling them to that.
It is w ell know n that a com m and to the M essen g er ( j | | ) is a
com m and to his Um m ah, if there is nothing to indicate that it is only
for him.
«{and do not follow their desires:? that is, the desires o f those who
deviate from the religion, such as the disbelievers and the hypocrites,
w hether that is by follow ing them in som e o f th eir religion or by
refraining from calling people to Allah or not adhering to the straight
path. If you w ere to follow their desires after the know ledge that has
come to you, then you would surely be in the wrong (2:145). He did not
say “do not follow their religion” because their original religion, that
Allah had prescribed for them , was the religion o f all the M essengers,
but they did not follow it; rather they follow ed th eir w him s and
desires and they took their religion as a m ockery and a m ere game
(7: 51).
^and say)» to them , when they argue with you:
*{I believe in all the Books that Allah has sent d ow n^ that is, let your
argum ent with them be based on this great principle that highlights
the noble nature o f Islam, and indicates that it supersedes all other
religions and that the religion that the People o f the Book claim to
follow is in fact part o f Islam. This teaches us that if the People o f
the Book argue on the basis o f b elief in som e o f the Books or some

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Soorat ash-Shoora (14-15) | 41

o f the M essengers, but not others, that is not to be accepted from


them , because according to the B ook to w hich they call people and
the M essenger w hom they claim to follow it is required to believe in
this Q u r’an and the one who brought it. O ur Book and our M essenger
only instruct us to believe in M oosa and ‘Eesa, and in the Torah and
G ospel, that it tells us about and confirm s, and tells us that these
books confirm its soundness.
W ith regard to the Torah and G ospel, and the description they
give o f M oosa and ‘Eesa, w hich is not in accordance w ith w hat is
m entioned in our Book, Allah did not instruct us to believe in that.
^and I have been com m anded to deal justly with you [all])? that is,
when judging concerning that wherein you differ. So your enmity and
resentm ent, O People o f the Book, do not prevent m e from judging
betw een you justly. Part o f being ju st w hen judging betw een people
who hold differing view s, w hether they are People o f the Book or
otherw ise, is to accept w hat they have o f truth and reject w hat they
have o f falsehood.
*(Allah is our Lord and your Lord)? that is, He is the Lord o f all, and
you are not closer to Him than us.
^W e have our deeds and you have your deeds)?, both good and evil
^L e t there be no [further] argum ent betw een us and you)? that is,
after the facts have becom e clear, and truth has becom e distinct
from falsehood, and guidance from m isguidance, there is no longer
any room for argum ent, because the purpose o f arguing is only to
distinguish truth from falsehood, so that the person o f mature thinking
will be guided, and p ro o f will be established against the m isguided.
This does not m ean that the People o f the Book are not to be engaged
in argument. How could that be the case, when Allah says:
^ D o not dispute w ith the P eople o f the B ook except in the m ost
courteous m an n er...)? (al- ‘Ankaboot 29: 46)
R ather w hat is m eant is w hat we have m entioned.

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42 | Tafseeras-Sa'di Juz ’25

^A llah will bring us together, and unto Him is the return [o f all]^
on the Day o f R esurrection, w hen He will requite each person for
his deeds, at w hich tim e it will becom e clear w ho is sincere and who
is lying.

42:16. As for those who argue against [the religion of) Allah after it
has been accepted, their argument carries no weight with their
Lord; they have incurred divine wrath and theirs will be a severe
punishment.

T his is co nnected to the w ords (in the previous verse): ^L e t


there be no [further] arg u m en t b etw een us and you)? (42: 15).
H ere A llah states that ^ th o se w ho argue against [the religion of]
Allah)? on the basis o f false argum ents and contradictory specious
argum ents
Rafter it has been accepted)* that is, after people o f m ature thinking
and reason responded to the call o f A llah because o f w hat becam e
clear to them o f definitive p ro o f and evidence. As for these people
who argue against the truth after it has becom e clear, ^their argument
carries no w eight w ith their L ord^, because it is a rejection o f the
truth, and everything that is contrary to the truth is false.
^th ey have incurred divine wrath)* because o f their sins and their
turning away from and rejecting the evidence and clear signs o f Allah
^an d theirs will be a severe pu n ish m en t^ w hich is the im pact o f
divine wrath upon them . This is the punishm ent o f everyone w ho
argues against the truth on the basis o f falsehood.

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Soorat ash-Shoora (17-18) | 43

o o

(U -W
42:17. It is Allah Who has sent down the Book with the truth and justice.
How could you know? The Hour may well be near at hand.
42:18. Those who do not believe in it seek to hasten it, whereas those
who believe are apprehensive about it and know that it is the
truth. Verily those who dispute concerning the Hour have indeed
gone far astray.

H aving stated that His p ro o f and signs are clear, as anyone in


w hom there is any good responded to them , Allah now m entions the
basis and foundation o f that evidence; in fact all signs that Allah sent
to people are based on that foundation:
^ l t is A llah W ho has sent dow n the Book w ith the truth and
justice)?. The Book is this great Q u r’an, which was sent down with
the truth and which contains truth and certainty. All o f it is clear verses
and clear p ro o f that speaks o f all issues o f divinity and religious
beliefs. So it discusses the best o f issues and presents the clearest o f
proof.
Then Allah (4c) says, in order to alarm those deniers who seek to
hasten the onset o f the Hour: tfHow could you know ? The Hour may
well be near at hand)? that is, no one knows how far o ff it is or when
it will begin, so it m ay be expected at any time.
f(Those who do not believe in it seek to hasten it)? out o f stubborn
disbelief, trying to outw it their Lord

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44 I Tafseeras-Sa‘di J u z ’25

^w hereas those who believe are apprehensive about it}9 that is, they
are afraid because o f their belief in it and their know ledge o f w hat it
will involve o f requital for deeds. Their fear is due to their knowledge
o f their Lord, for they fear that their deeds will not save them or lead
them to a place o f happiness. Hence A llah says:
^andjj they ^know that it is the tru th s concerning which there is no
doubt.
^Verily those who dispute concerning the H our^ that is, after doubting
it they disputed with the M essengers and their followers, dem anding
p ro o f o f it. They have gone far astray in stubbornness and in arguing
in a m anner that is not even close to being right and proper; rather it
is far rem oved from that.
W ho could be further astray than one who disbelieves in the realm
that is real in a true sense, nam ely the realm that w as created to
remain and exist forever? It is the realm o f requital in which Allah
will m ake m anifest His justice and grace. Indeed this present realm,
in com parison to it, is like a rider w ho rests in the shade o f a tree,
then m oves on and leaves it behind. It is a realm to pass through, not
a place in which to settle.
T hey believe in this tran sien t realm because they see it and
experience it, and they disbelieve in the hereafter which is m entioned
in all the divinely-revealed Books, and o f which the noble M essengers
and th eir follow ers spoke, w ho are the m ost m ature o f people in
thinking, the m ost w ell versed in know ledge and the sm artest and
brightest.

0 0

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Soorat ash-Shoora (19-20) | 45

42:19. Allah is kind tow ards His slaves; He grants provision to


whomever He wills, and He is the Strong, the Almighty.
42:20. Whoever seeks the harvest o f the hereafter, We will increase for
him his harvest; and whoever seeks the harvest o f this world,
We will give him thereof [what is already decreed for him], but
he will have no share in the hereafter.

Here Allah (4c) tells us o f His kindness to His slaves, so that they
m ay know Him , love Him , and seek His kindness and generosity.
A nother shade o f m eaning o f the w ord la te e f (translated here as
^kind)*) indicates that He know s w hat is in their hearts and minds,
which leads His slaves - especially the believers - to that which is
good for them in a m anner that they do not know or anticipate.
One aspect o f His kindness to His believing slave is that He guides
him to that which is good in ways that never cross his mind, by m eans
o f w hat He m akes available to him o f causes that lead him to that,
such as creating in him the love o f truth and subm ission to it, and His
inspiring His noble angels to help the believers to be steadfast, and
urge them to do good, and m ake truth fair-seem ing in their hearts in
order to m otivate them to follow it.
A nother aspect o f His kindness is that He enjoins the believers
to do com m unal acts o f w orship w hich strengthen their resolve and
m otivate them , and lead them to com pete in doing good and seeking
it and to follow one ano th er’s example.
A third aspect o f His kindness is that He has m ade available to His
slave every means that m ay form a barrier between him and sin, to the
extent that if Allah B s ) knows that w orldly gain, wealth, leadership
and other things for w hich people com pete in this w orld could cause
His slave to turn aw ay from obedience to Him or m ake him negligent
or lead him into sin, He diverts it from him and restricts his provision.
Hence He says here: ^H e grants provision to w hom ever He wills)*
according to w hat is dictated by His w isdom and subtle know ledge

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46 I Tafseer as-Sa'di J u z ’25

<|and He is the Strong, the Almighty)? to W hom all pow er belongs,


so no created being has any pow er or strength except through Him,
to W hom all things submit.
^W hoever seeks the harvest o f the hereafter)? that is, its rewards
and gains, so he believes in it and strives hard for that,
efWe will increase for him his harvest)? by greatly m ultiplying the
reward for his deeds, as Allah (3s) says elsewhere:
«fBut w hoever seeks the hereafter and strives for it as it should be
striven for, and is a [true] believer - such are the ones whose effort
will be appreciated.)? (al-lsra 17:19)
N evertheless, his share o f worldly provision will inevitably com e
to him.
Sfand whoever seeks the harvest o f this world)? in the sense that this
world is his only aim, and he does not give precedence to the hereafter,
as he has no hope for its rew ard and does not fear its punishm ent,
«(We will give him thereof)? his share that is already decreed for him
«fbut he will have no share in the hereafter^ for he will be deprived o f
paradise and its delights, and he will deserve hell and its blazing fire.
This is like the verse in which Allah (-Js) says:
sfThose who seek the life o f this world and its splendour - We will
repay them in full in this life for their deeds, and they will not be
given less than they deserve. Those are the ones for whom there will
be nothing in the hereafter but the fire. T here all their efforts will
com e to nothing, and all they did will be in vain.)? (Hood 11:15-16)

O ______ 0

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Soorat ash-Shoora (21-23) I 47

42:21. Or do they have partners5 who have prescribed for them a


religion for which Allah has not given any authority? Had it
not been for a prior decree o f respite, a decisive judgem ent
would already have been passed between them. Verily for the
wrongdoers there will be a painful punishment.
42:22. You will see the wrongdoers filled with apprehension about what
they have earned, but [the requital thereof] will inevitably befall
them. But those who believe and do righteous deeds will be in
the meadows o f paradise. They will have all that they wish for
with their Lord; that is the great bounty.
42:23. That is [the bounty] o f which Allah gives glad tidings to His
slaves who believe and do righteous deeds. Say: No recompense
do 1 ask o f you for this, except that you should be kind to me
for my kinship with you. W hoever does a good deed, We
will increase its merit for him. Verily Allah is Oft-Forgiving,
Appreciative.

H ere A llah (-fe) tells us that the polytheists took their partners
as allies, and they had som ething in com m on w ith them , nam ely
disbelief and deeds based on disbelief. These allies w ere the devils
am ong hum ankind, w ho call others to disbelief; they ^prescribed
for them a religion for w hich A llah has not given any authority]?,

5 The partners are the false gods, idols, or devils among jinn and humans
who made fair-seeming to them the ascription of partners to Allah and
the denial of the resurrection, and encouraged them to focus only on this
world.

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involving polytheism and innovation, forbidding that w hich Allah


had perm itted, perm itting that which Allah had forbidden, and other
m atters as dictated by their whim s and desires.
No doubt true religion cannot be anything but w hat A llah (*te)
has prescribed so that people m ay follow it and draw near to Him
thereby. In principle there should be no one who prescribes anything
that w as not prescribed by A llah for His M essenger ( 3 ||) , so how
about these evildoers w ho have in com m on w ith their forefathers
their adherence to disbelief?
{(Had it not been for a prior decree o f respite)* that is, w ere it not
for the appointed term set by Allah, and His decree that He w ould
give them respite until that time, He would have passed judgem ent
am ong them im m ediately by rew arding those who are in the right
and destroying those who are in the wrong, because the justification
for their destruction is present. But ahead o f them lies the painful
punishm ent in the hereafter, for these and for all other wrongdoers.
On that day, ((You will see the wrongdoers)* that is, those who
w ronged them selves by disbelieving and com m itting sins
{(filled with apprehension)* that is, afraid and filled with dread
{(about what they have earned)* lest they be punished for it.
When a person is afraid, that which he fears may or may not happen
to him . T herefore A llah confirm s here that there {(will inevitably
befall them)* the punishm ent that they fear, because they did that
which incurs the punishm ent, w ithout anything to offset it, such as
repentance and so on, and they have reached the point where there is
no longer any respite or postponem ent.
{(But those who believe)* with all their hearts in A llah and in His
Books and His M essengers, and w hat they brought
{(and do righteous deeds)* w hich includes both beliefs and physical
actions, obligatory and recom m ended, they will be ^in the m eadow s
o f paradise)*. So do not ask about the beauty o f those verdant meadows

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Soorat ash-Shoora (21-23) | 49

and what they contain o f flow ing rivers, green grass, beautiful views,
fruitful trees, singing birds, m elodious voices, and m eeting loved ones
and enjoying their com pany to the fullest.
They are gardens that will forever increase in beauty and splendour,
and their people will never tire o f delighting in their pleasures.
^T h ey will have all that they w ish for)? that is, in those gardens;
w hatever they w ant they will get, and w hatever they ask for they will
receive, such as no eye has seen, no ear has heard, nor has it ever
crossed the m ind o f man.
^ th a t is the great bounty)?. C an there be any bounty greater than
attaining the pleasure o f A llah (4s) and the jo y o f being close to
Him in paradise?
^T h at is [the bounty] o f w hich A llah gives glad tidings to His
slaves who believe and do righteous deeds)? that is, these are great
glad tidings, the greatest o f all, given by the M ost M erciful, M ost
Gracious, at the hands o f the best o f His creation, to those who believe
and do righteous deeds. This is the m ost sublim e o f goals and the
m eans that lead to that goal are the best o f means.
«[Say: No recompense do I ask o f you for this)? that is, for conveying
this Q u r’an to you and calling you to follow its rulings. I do not w ant
to take your wealth or becom e your leader, or seek any other aims,
^except that you should be kind to me for my kinship w ith you^.
It m ay be that w hat is m eant is: I am not asking you for any
recom pense for this except one thing, which is in your favour, and
will benefit you, nam ely that you should love me because o f the ties o f
kinship between us, and this is a kind o f love that is extra to the love
(o f the Prophet [}§§]) that is required by faith. Loving the M essenger
( j | t ) on the basis o f faith, and giving precedence to love o f him over
love o f anyone else after Allah, is required o f every M uslim. But he
asked these people for som ething in addition to that, w hich was to
love him on the basis o f kinship, because he began his m ission by
calling the closest o f people to him, to the extent that it w as said that

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there was no one am ong the clans o f Q uraysh that did not have ties
o f kinship to the M essenger o f Allah (3|§).
T his exception indicates that he w as not asking them for any
recom pense at all, except som ething that w ould benefit them , so it
was not a recom pense for him at all; rather he was rew arding them.
^ W h o e v er does a good deed)? such as prayer, fasting, Hajj or
treating people kindly,
«|We will increase its m erit for him]? that is, Allah will give him a
sense o f com fort and m ake things easy for him , and that good deed
will be a cause o f doing another good deed. Thus the good deeds o f
the believer will increase, and he will rise in status with Allah and with
His creation, and will attain rew ard in this w orld and the hereafter.
^Verily Allah is O ft-Forgiving, Appreciative]? - He forgives m ajor
sins, no m atter how great they are, w hen one repents from them ,
and He appreciates a small good deed by giving a great rew ard for
it. By His forgiveness He forgives sins and conceals faults, and by
His appreciation He accepts good deeds and m ultiplies their reward
greatly.

0 0

42:24. O r do they say: He has fabricated lies against Allah? But if


Allah so willed, He could seal up your heart. Allah eliminates
falsehood and establishes the truth by His words. Verily He
knows well what is in [people’s] hearts.

That is, do those w ho reject the M essenger ( ^ ) say, audaciously


and m endaciously: ^ H e has fabricated lies against Allah]?, thus

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Soorat ash-Shoora

m aking the w orst o f accusations against you? They accused you o f


fabricating lies against A llah by claim ing to be a P rophet and by
attributing to Allah that w hich He had nothing to do with, when they
were well aw are o f your truthfulness and honesty; how can they dare
to tell such blatant lies?
In fact by doing this they also tran sgressed against A llah, for
it is an im plicit criticism o f H im for giving you full authority and
control over this great call w hich - according to their claim - is the
greatest m ischief on earth, for Allah allowed him to proclaim this call
and attribute it to Him, then He supported him w ith clear m iracles,
definitive proof, clear victories and dom inance o f those who opposed
him. Allah (4c) could have put an end to this call from the outset and
w iped it out, by sealing up the heart o f the M essenger («|§) so that
he w ould not be able to understand anything and no goodness would
enter his heart. If He had sealed up his heart, the m atter w ould have
com e to a com plete halt.
This definitively points to the soundness o f the m essage brought
by the M essenger ( # | ) , and is the strongest testim ony from A llah in
support o f what he said; there can be no testim ony greater or stronger
than that. Hence by His wisdom and mercy, and in accordance with the
way He always deals with things, Allah erases falsehood and removes
it; even if it has the upper hand som etimes, it will ultim ately diminish.
«fand establishes the truth by His words)? - one w ay that A llah
uses to establish and strengthen the truth is that He allows falsehood
to stand up to it, then when it stands up to the truth, truth attacks it
by presenting its proofs and evidence. Thus truth will m ake m anifest
His light and guidance, because o f which falsehood will dim inish and
be suppressed, and its falseness will becom e apparent to everyone,
whilst the truth is m anifested and is m ade clear for everyone.
^Verily He knows well w hat is in [people’s] hearts)? that is, what
there is in them o f good and evil, and w hat they are concealing and
not disclosing.

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o _____________ o

42:25. It is He Who accepts repentance from His slaves and pardons


bad deeds, and He knows all that you do.
42:26. He responds to [the supplication of] those who believe and do
righteous deeds, and gives them yet more out o f His bounty.
But as for the disbelievers, theirs will be a severe punishment.
42:27. If Allah were to grant abundant provision to [all] His slaves,
they would indeed transgress all bounds [and commit much
injustice] in the land; but He sends it down in due measure as
He wills. Verily He is well aware o f His slaves and sees them
all.
42:28. It is He Who sends down the [much-needed] rain after they have
lost all hope, and spreads His mercy far and wide. And He is
the Protector, Worthy o f all praise.

This highlights the perfect generosity and im m ense kindness o f


Allah (4s), as He accepts the repentance o f His slaves when they give
up their sins, regret them and resolve not to go back to them , if they
seek thereby the pleasure o f their Lord. Allah accepts their repentance
after their doom had becom e due as a result o f their com m itting sin,
and after punishm ents in this world w ere carried out as prescribed
in Sharia.
<|and pardons bad deeds$»; He erases them and erases w hat they
leave o f sham e and w hat they incur o f punishm ent. T he one w ho

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Soorat ash-Shoora (25-28) | 53

repents is restored to honour before H im , as if he never did those


bad deeds, and He loves him and enables him to do that w hich brings
him close to Him.
Because repentance is one o f the great deeds that may be perfected
because o f com plete sincerity and resolve, or it m ay be im perfect if
sincerity is lacking, or it m ay be invalid if the aim is to attain some
worldly goal, and because the place o f repentance is the heart which
no one knows except Allah, He concludes this verse with the words:
«fand He knows all that you do)?.
A llah calls all His slaves to turn to H im and repent from their
shortcom ings, and according to their response, people are divided
into two categories:
The first category is those w ho respond, whom He describes in
the follow ing verse: ^H e responds to [the supplication of] those who
believe and do righteous deeds)? that is, they respond to their Lord and
do w hat He calls them to do; they subm it to Him and answ er His call,
because what they have o f faith and righteous deeds m otivates them
to do that. Once they respond to Him , A llah responds to them and
shows appreciation to them, for He is the Oft-Forgiving, Appreciative.
By His grace, He gives them m ore, by helping them and giving
them energy to do righteous deeds, and He gives them a m ultiple
rew ard, far g reater than w hat they deserve for th eir good deeds,
granting them rew ard and the great trium ph.
A s for those w ho do not respond to A llah, nam ely those w ho
stubbornly disbelieve in Him and in His M essengers, ^theirs will be
a severe punishm ent^ in this w orld and the hereafter.
Then A llah tells us that by His kindness to His slaves, He does
not bestow on them a great deal o f w orldly provision that w ould be
detrim ental to their religious com m itm ent:
^ I f Allah w ere to grant abundant provision to [all] His slaves, they
would indeed transgress all bounds [and com m it m uch injustice] in

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54 I Tafseer as-Sa'di J u z '25

the land)? that is, they would neglect their duties tow ards A llah and
w ould focus on indulging in worldly pleasures, and abundant wealth
would m ake them concentrate on their desires, even if that involved
sin and w rongdoing.
^but He sends it down in due m easure as He w ills^ according to
w hat is dictated by His know ledge and wisdom.
«|Verily He is well aw are o f His slaves and sees them all)? as it says
in som e reports that A llah (4c) says:
«A m ong M y slaves are those w hose faith cannot be sound except
through w ealth, and if I w ere to m ake them poor, their faith would
be corrupted. And am ong My slaves are those whose faith cannot be
sound except through poverty, and if 1 w ere to m ake them rich, their
faith w ould be corrupted. A nd am ong M y slaves are those w hose
faith cannot be sound except through good health, and if I were to
m ake them ill, it w ould corrupt their faith. A nd am ong My slaves
are those w hose faith cannot be sound except through sickness, and
if I w ere to give them good health, their faith would be corrupted. I
control the affairs o f M y slaves according to My know ledge o f w hat
is in their hearts, for verily I am All-Aware, A ll-Seeing.» (Recorded
by at-Tabarani; graded w eak by al-A lbani)6
^ It is H e W ho sends dow n the [m uch-needed] rain)? that is,
abundant rain that is m uch needed by the land and the people
Rafter they have lost all hope)? and rain had ceased for a while, so
they thought that the rain w ould not com e and they despaired and

6 A ll h adiths in th is tex t h av e b een c h ec k e d and v e r ifie d by lI P H ’s


researchers. It is rare, but it d oes happen that a hadith is not verifiable
w ithin the tim efram e o f researching and editing the book. In that case,
a d ecision is m ade by the editorial board as to w hether or not to include
the hadith. It is lIP H ’s p olicy not to include w eak hadiths or fabricated
(fake) hadiths in our publications. If a w eak hadith is included in any text,
it is on ly because the author o f the book d iscu sses it as a w eak hadith.
(Editor)

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Soorat ash-Shoora (29) | 55

did things to try to bring it. So A llah sends dow n the m uch-needed
rain and thereby ^spreads His m ercy far and wide)?, by bringing forth
provision for hum ans and anim als, so that they appreciate it greatly,
and they rejoice in it and feel happy.
^A nd He is the Protector)? W ho protects and takes care o f His slaves
in all ways, looking after their interests both spiritual and worldly
^W orthy o f all praise)? for His p rotection and control, w orthy o f
all praise for His perfect attributes and for w hat He bestow s on His
creation o f all kinds o f favours.

42:29. Among His signs is the creation o f the heavens and the earth, and
what He has scattered throughout them o f all kinds o f creatures.
And He has the power to gather them together whenever He
wills.

T hat is, am ong the signs o f H is great m ight, and that He will
bring the dead back to life tfis the creation o f the heavens and the
earth)? despite their greatness and vastness. This is indicative o f His
m ight and vast power. W hat is seen in both o f them o f precision and
perfection is indicative o f H is w isdom , and w hat they contain o f
benefits that serve p eople’s interests is indicative o f His mercy. This
dem onstrates that He alone is deserving o f all kinds o f w orship, and
that the so-called divinity o f all others is false.
^an d w hat He has scattered throughout them)? that is, w hat He
has distributed throughout the heavens and the earth o f all kinds o f
creatures w hich Allah has m ade to be o f service and benefit to His
slaves.

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56 I Tafseer as-Sa'di Juz '25

(■{And He has the pow er to gather them together)* that is, to bring all
creatures back together after their death, for the standing on the Day
o f Resurrection
({whenever He wills)?. His pow er and w ill are fit for that purpose,
but to believe that this will happen is subject to w hether there is a
truthful divine text to this effect. It is know n that the reports from
the M essengers and the texts o f the divine books that were revealed
to them all point to the fact that this will happen.

(n-r-
42:30. Whatever calamity befalls you is because o f the deeds that your
own hands have wrought, but He overlooks much.
42:31. You can never escape [Allah’s punishment] on earth, and besides
Allah you have neither protector nor helper.

Here A llah (^s) tells us that no calam ity befalls people, affecting
their health, property, children and what they love and is dear to them,
but it is because o f what their own hands have sent forth o f evil deeds,
but what Allah pardons is much m ore than that. Allah does not wrong
people; rather they w rong them selves.
({If Allah were to take humankind to task for what they have earned, He
w ould not leave on the face o f [the earth] a single living c re a tu re ...^
(Fatir 35: 45)
The delay in the punishm ent is not due to neglect or incapability
on His part.

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Soorat ash-Shoora (32-35) | 57

^You can never escape [A llah ’s punishm ent] on earth)? that is,
you cannot escape the pow er that A llah has over you; rather you are
helpless on earth, for you cannot resist w hat A llah w ills concerning
you
*(and besides Allah you have neither protector)? to protect you and
bring you benefits
^n o r helper)? to w ard o ff harm from you.

42:32. Among His signs are the ships, sailing on the sea like mountains.
42:33. If He so willed, He could still the wind, so that they would
remain motionless on its surface. Surely in that there are signs
for every steadfastly patient and deeply thankful person.
42:34. Or He could cause them to sink on account o f their [passengers’]
misdeeds, but He overlooks much.
42:35. Then those who argue against Our signs will know that they
have no escape.7

That is, am ong the signs o f His m ercy and care for His slaves ^are
the ships, sailing on the sea)? this includes all kinds o f ships, driven by
engines or under sail, that are so big that they are ^like mountains)?.

7 That is, when they are in the middle of the sea and strong winds begin to
blow from all directions - or, conversely, their ship remains motionless
for lack of wind - at that point they will realise that they have no one to
turn to except Allah, and no one can save them except Him, so they will
turn to Him with utter sincerity. (al-Qurtubi)

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58 | Tafseer as-Sa'di J u z’25

A llah has m ade the deep sea to be o f service to the ships, and He
protects them from the tossing o f the high waves. He causes the ships
to carry you and your m any belongings to distant lands and rem ote
regions, and He has m ade available for the ships all the m eans that
help them to be o f service to you.
Then He highlights these means further: ^ If He so willed, He could
still the w ind^ that Allah has m ade the m eans o f m oving the ships
«fso that theyl» nam ely the ships ^w ould rem ain m otionless^ on the
surface o f the sea, not m oving forw ards or backw ards. This also
applies to ships that are driven by engines, because they are also
affected by the wind.
If Allah so w illed, He could cause the ships to sink, because o f
the deeds o f their passengers; He could drow n them in the sea and
destroy them , but He is forbearing and overlooks much.
^S urely in that there are signs for every steadfastly patient and
deeply thankful person^ that is, for the one who has great patience
in putting up with w hat he finds burdensom e or difficult, so he forces
h im self to b ear it w ith patience, w hether it is hardship in doing
acts o f obedience or in restraining h im self from sin, or restraining
him self from becom ing discontent in the face o f calam ities. A nd he
is thankful at times o f ease and when blessings com e, acknowledging
the blessings o f his Lord, hum bling h im self before Him and striving
to please Him. Such is the one w ho benefits from the signs o f Allah.
As for the one w ho does not have patience and is not grateful for
the blessings o f Allah, this is the one who is negligent or heedless,
and he does not benefit from the signs o f Allah.
Then Allah says: ^T hen those who argue against O ur signs^
and try to invalidate them by their falsehood
^w ill know that they have no escaped that is, no one will save them
from w hat will befall them o f punishm ent.

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Soorat ash-Shoora (36-39) | 59

o 0

42:36. W hatever you have been given is but the enjoym ent o f the
life o f this world; but that which is with Allah is better and
more lasting, for those who believe and put their trust in their
Lord;
42:37. and who avoid m ajor sins and shameful deeds, and, when
angered, are willing to forgive;
42:38. and who respond to their Lord and establish prayer, and conduct
their affairs by mutual consultation, and spend out o f what We
have provided for them;
42:39. and, when they are wronged, stand up for them selves [and
respond in kind].

This is aim ed at m aking people lose interest in this w orld and have
a greater interest in the hereafter, by m entioning deeds that may help
one to attain that.
^W hatever you have been given)? o f power, leadership, wealth,
sons, good health and physical well-being
«fis but the enjoym ent o f the life o f this w o rld^ and its im perfect and
transient pleasures
^b u t that which is with Allah)? o f great rew ard and eternal bliss
f[is better)? than the pleasures o f this world, and there is no comparison
betw een them.
«(and m ore lasting)? because it is bliss that is not im perfect or tainted
with distress, and it will never depart.

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60 I Tafseer as-Sa'di J u z ‘25

Then Allah tells us for w hom this rew ard is: it is ^fo r those who
believe and put their trust in their L ord^ that is, they com bine sound
faith w hich is based on righteous deeds, both outw ard and inward,
with trust in Allah, which is the m eans o f achieving all good deeds.
A ny deed that is not accom panied by trust in A llah is im perfect.
This trust m eans relying with all o n e’s heart on Allah to bring what
one loves and ward o ff what one dislikes, whilst having confidence
in Him.
({and who avoid m ajor sins and sham eful deeds)?; the difference
betw een m ajor sins and sham eful deeds - although both are m ajor
sins - is that sham eful deeds are m ajor sins to which there is a natural
inclination, such as fornication and the like, whereas major sins are not
like that. This applies when they are m entioned together; when either
o f them is m entioned on its own, then the other is included with it.
«{and, w hen angered, are w illing to forgive)? that is, they have
attained such good manners and attitudes that forbearance has become
second nature to them , to the extent that if som eone angers them with
his w ords or deeds, they suppress their anger and do not act on it;
rather they forgive him and do not respond to bad treatm ent except
with kindness, forgiveness and tolerance.
This forgiveness and tolerance leads to beneficial consequences
and wards o ff m any bad things regarding them selves and others. This
is like the verses in which Allah (4?) says:
({Good deeds and evil deeds are not equal. Repel evil with that which
is good, w hereupon he betw een w hom and you there was ill feeling
will becom e like a close friend. But none can attain that except those
who are patient, and none can attain it except one who is blessed with
a great share o f good and righteousness. )* (Fussilat 41: 34-35)
({and who respond to their Lord)? that is, they subm it and obey
Him, and answ er His call, and it becom es their aim to please Him
and attain nearness to Him.

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Soorat ash-Shoora (36-39) | 61

Part o f responding to A llah is establishing prayer and giving


zakah, therefore they are m entioned after that, by way o f following
the m ention o f som ething in general term s with som ething specific,
which is indicative o f its im portance and virtue. Hence Allah says:
«[and establish prayer^ that is, both outw ardly and inwardly, both
obligatory and voluntary prayers
^and spend out o f what We have provided for them ^ o f obligatory
spending such as zakah and spending on relatives and the like, and
encouraged kinds o f spending such as charity to people in general.
^and conduct their affairs^ both religious and worldly
^by mutual consultation^ that is, no one forces his ow n view with
regard to any m atter o f their com m on affairs. This can only be a sign
o f their unity, harm ony, m utual love and perfect m ature thinking,
because if they w ant to do som ething that requires discussion and
exchange o f view s, they get together and discuss and exam ine the
issue. Then once it becom es clear to them w hat is the best option
that will serve the interests o f the com m unity, they hasten to take a
decision concerning that option. This has to do with m atters such as
decisions concerning war and jihad, and appointing people to positions
as governors, judges and so on, or discussing som e religious issues
in general. That is because such issues are o f com m on concern, and
discussing them and exchanging views in order to reach the correct
conclusion is som ething that is loved by Allah and is included in this
verse.
^and, when they are w rongedjj that is, by their enem ies
^stan d up for them selves [and respond in k ind]^ because o f their
strength and pride; they do not react like people who have no pride
and are helpless.
Here Allah describes them as having faith, putting their trust in
Him, avoiding m ajor sins and sham eful deeds, by m eans o f w hich
m inor sins are absolved, subm itting perfectly to H im , responding

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62 I Tafseer as-Sa‘di Juz '25

to the call o f their Lord, establishing prayer, spending on charitable


causes, consulting one another regarding their affairs and standing
up to th eir en em ies. T h ese are all attrib u tes o f perfectio n and
the fact that they have acquired them all m eans that they w ill do
o th er good deeds o f lesser im portance, and w ill refrain from the
opposite.

0 0

42:40. Harm [or offence] may be requited by the like thereof,8 but
whoever forgives and reconciles, his reward is with Allah; verily
He does not love the wrongdoers.
42:41. But whoever settles the score after having been wronged, there
is no reason to reproach them.
42:42. But there is reason to reproach [and punish] those who wrong
people and spread m ischief throughout the land w ithout
justification. For such there will be a painful punishment.
42:43. But w hoever shows patience and forgives, that is indeed
something that is recommended by Allah.

8 The requital may be equal to the harm done by the one who committed the
original offence against the one who is wronged, but must go no further
than that. For example, in the case of a verbal wrong, such as saying “May
Allah humiliate you”, the wronged party may respond in the same terms,
but is not allowed to add anything else to it.

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Soorat ash-Shoora (40-43) | 63

Here Allah m entions the various levels o f settling scores, o f which


there are three: justice, charitable forgiveness, and injustice.
Justice m eans requiting an offence w ith a sim ilar action, no m ore
and no less. So it is a life for a life, and any injury m ay be requited
with a sim ilar injury, and dam age to property is to be com pensated
by replacing it with som ething similar.
C haritable forgiveness m eans pardoning and reconciling with the
person w ho did wrong. Hence Allah says: ((but w hoever forgives and
reconciles, his rew ard is w ith Allah)? - A llah will rew ard him greatly
and abundantly. But i f the offender does not deserve to be forgiven
and there is a shar‘i interest to be served by punishing him , then in
that case he is not enjoined to forgive him. Stating that the rew ard
o f the one who forgives is with Allah m otivates him to forgive and
to treat others as he wants Allah to treat him. Just as he wants Allah
to forgive him , let him forgive others, and ju st as he w ants A llah to
pardon him, let him pardon others, for the requital m atches the deed.
A s for injustice, it is m entioned in the w ords ({verily H e does
not love the w ro n g d o ers^ w ho initiate offence against others, or
retaliate w ith a greater offence; the additional elem ent is wrongdoing
or injustice.
((But w hoever settles the score after having been wronged)? that
is, he settles the score with the one who w ronged him after he was
w ronged
^there is no reason to reproach them)? that is, there is no blam e on
them for that.
The words ({and, w hen they are wronged, stand up for them selves
[and respond in kind])? (42: 39) and ^B ut w hoever settles the score
after having been wronged)? indicate that it is inevitable that one will
be faced with aggression and m istreatm ent.
A s for the one w ho w ants to w rong others and m istreat them ,
w ithout having been subjected to any offence by them , such a person

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64 I Tafseer as-Sa'di J u z ’25

should not be requited only with a punishm ent that is com m ensurate
w ith his offence; rather he should be disciplined w ith a punishm ent
that will deter him from aggressive w ords or deeds.
^ B u t there is reason to reproach [and p u n ish ]^ that is, there is
justification for carrying out Islam ically prescribed punishm ents in
the case o f *fthose w ho wrong people and spread m ischief throughout
the land w ith o u t justification)?. T his inclu d es w ro n g d o in g and
transgression against people with regard to their blood, w ealth and
honour.
«(For such there will be a painful punishment)? that is, one that will
cause both psychological and physical pain, com m ensurate w ith their
w rongdoing and aggression.
^B ut w hoever shows patience)? in bearing w hat he is faced with
o f offence
*(and forgives^ the offenders by pardoning them for what they have
done,
^that is indeed som ething that is recom m ended by Allah)? that is, it
is one o f the things that A llah encourages and em phasises, and states
that no one will be able to do it except those w ho are patient and
are blessed w ith a great share o f good and righteousness. It is one
o f the things that no one is helped to do except people with strong
resolve and m otivation, and people o f m ature thinking and deep
insight.
N ot settling the score or standing up for o neself in word or deed is
something very difficult, and bearing offence with patience, pardoning
it and forgiving it, and responding to it with kindness, are actions that
are even m ore difficult, but that is easy for those for w hom A llah
m akes it easy and who strive to attain such characteristics, seeking
the help o f A llah to achieve that. Then after that, if a person tastes the
sweetness thereof and sees its positive consequences, then he will do
it willingly, feel com fortable with it and delight in it.

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Soorat ash-Shoora (44-46) | 65

o ________________ o

a i-tt

42:44. Whomever Allah causes to go astray, he will have no protector


thereafter. And you will see the wrongdoers, when they behold
the punishment, saying: Is there any way to go back [and make
amends]?
42:45. You will see them brought before it [the fire] in a state o f abject
humiliation, stealing furtive glances at it. Those who believed
will say: Indeed the real losers are those who lose their own
souls and their families on the Day o f Resurrection. Verily the
wrongdoers will suffer everlasting punishment.
42:46. They will have no protectors to save them from A llah ’s
punishment. For those whom Allah has caused to go astray,
there is no way [to guidance and salvation].

Here A llah tells us that He alone guides people or causes them


to go astray, and ^W hom ever Allah causes to go astray]* because o f
his w rongdoing
«fhe will have no protector thereafter^ to take care o f his affairs and
guide him.
^ A n d you w ill see the w ro n g d o ers, w hen they beh o ld the
punishment]* they will see som ething very terrifying, difficult and

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66 I Tafseer as-Sa'di J u z’25

horrific, and they w ill express great regret and sorrow for their
previous deeds.
((saying: Is there any w ay to go back [and m ake am ends]?)? That
is, is there any w ay w e could go back to the previous w orld and
do som ething other than w hat we did before? This is a request for
som ething im possible that can never happen.
({You will see them brought before it [the fire] in a state o f abject
hum iliation^ that is, you will see reflected in their physical posture
what is in their hearts
((stealing furtive glances at it)? that is, they will look stealthily at the
fire, because o f its fearsom e appearance.
((Those w ho believed will say)? when the fate o f people is decided
and the sincere and faithful people becom e distinct from others:
((Indeed the real losers are those who lose their ow n souls and their
fam ilies on the Day o f R esurrection^ when they cause them selves to
miss out on the rew ard and incur a painful punishm ent, and they are
separated from their fam ilies and are not reunited with them.
({Verily the wrongdoers)? who w ronged them selves by disbelieving
and com m itting sins
({will suffer everlasting punishment)? that is, they will be im mersed in
the midst o f it and will never emerge from it; it will never be alleviated
and they will lose all hope.
({They w ill h av e no p ro tec to rs to save them from A lla h ’s
punishm ent)? as they used to hope for th em selv es. O n the Day
o f R esurrection, it w ill becom e clear to them and others that the
connections on w hich they pinned their hopes will be severed, and
when the punishm ent o f Allah comes to them it will not be warded off.
^F or those whom Allah has caused to go astray, there is no way [to
guidance and salvation])?. They w ent astray when they claim ed that
their so-called partners could bring them benefits or ward o ff harm,
then it becam e clear to them that they w ere astray.

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Soorat ash-Shoora 147-48) | 67

42:47. Respond to your Lord, before there comes from Allah a day
which no one can avert. On that day you will have no refuge
and no means o f denying [your sins].
42:48. But if they turn away, We have not sent you to be their keeper;
your duty is only to convey the message. If We bestow upon a
man mercy [prosperity], he rejoices in it; but when misfortune
befalls them because o f the deeds which their own hands have
wrought, then verily man becomes ungrateful.

Here Allah (■Jg) instructs His slaves to respond to Him by complying


with His com m ands and heeding His prohibitions, and by hastening to
do so and not procrastinating, before the Day o f R esurrection com es
w hich, w hen it com es, cannot be put back and it will not be possible
to make up for what was missed. On that day, the individual will have
no refuge to turn to, and no way to escape or flee from his Lord; rather
the angels will surround all creatures from the rear and will call out:
jin n and hum ans, if you are able to pass beyond the confines o f
the heavens and the earth, then do so. But you cannot pass beyond
them unless you have power.]? (ar-Rahman 55: 33)
On that day, no one will be able to deny w hat he com m itted o f
sins; in fact even if he does deny it, his own physical faculties will
testify against him.
In this and sim ilar verses, there is a condem nation o f those who
hope to live long, and a command to make the most o f any opportunity

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68 I Tafseer as-Sa'di Juz ’25

that com es along to do a good deed, because procrastinating leads to


a great deal o f trouble.
^B u t if they turn aw ay ^ from w hat you have brought to them ,
after you have conveyed the m essage clearly,
efWe have not sent you to be their keeper)?, recording their deeds and
finding out about them.
f|your duty is only to convey the message)?, and if you have done what
is required o f you, then your reward is due from A llah, w hether they
respond or turn away, and their reckoning will be with Allah, Who
is recording all their deeds, great and small, visible and invisible.
Then Allah B e) mentions the condition o f man, stating that if Allah
gives him a taste o f mercy, such as good physical health, abundant
provision, high status and the like, s(he rejoices in it)? that is, his joy
is based solely on that, and he does not look beyond it, which implies
that he is quite content with it whilst turning aw ay from the Bestow er
o f those blessings.
fjbut when misfortune)? such as sickness, poverty and the like ^befalls
them because o f the deeds which their own hands have wrought, then
verily man becom es ungrateful)? that is, by nature he is ungrateful
for previous blessings and discontent with w hatever befalls him o f
misfortune.

42:49. To Allah belongs the dominion o f the heavens and the earth.
He creates whatever He wills; He bestows female [offspring]

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Soorat ash-Shoora (51-53) | 69

upon whomever He wills, and bestows male [offspring] upon


whomever He wills,
42:50. or He bestows both males and females; and He leaves barren
whomever He wills. Verily He is All-Knowing, Omnipotent.

This verse tells us o f the vastness o f A llah ’s dom inion, which is


com plete, for He controls His creation how ever He wills; His control
ov er all things is so com prehensive that it includes the outcom es
o f all m easures that people take. M arriage is one o f the m eans o f
having children, but it is A llah (4s) W ho bestow s w hatever He wills
o f offspring.
There are some people to w hom He gives fem ale offspring, some
to w hom He gives m ales, and som e to w hom He gives both m ales
and females. A nd some o f them he m akes barren, so that they have
no offspring at all.
^Verily He is All-Knowing)* and know s all things
^O m nipotent)* that is, He has the pow er to do all things, and He
controls all things on the basis o f His know ledge and precision in
creation, and by His pow er over His creation.

42:51. It is not fitting for any man that Allah should speak to him except
by inspiration or from behind a veil, or by sending a Messenger

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70 | Tafseer as-Sa'di J u z ’25

to reveal, by Allah’s leave, whatever Allah wills. Verily He is


Most High, Most Wise.
42:52. Likewise We have revealed to you [O Muhammad] a life-giving
message by Our command. You knew nothing o f the scripture
or matters o f faith, but We have made it [the Q ur’an] a light
whereby We guide whomever We will o f Our slaves. Verily you
are indeed calling people to a straight path,
42:53. the path o f Allah, to Whom belongs all that is in the heavens
and all that is on earth. Verily the affairs o f all will ultimately
come back to Allah [for judgement].

W hen those who rejected the M essengers o f Allah and disbelieved


in Him said in their arrogance,
^ . . . I f only A llah w ould speak to us or som e sign w ould com e to
U S ... ]) (al-Baqarah 2: 118)
- A llah responded to them w ith this verse, stating th at His
speaking is only for the elite o f His creation, nam ely the Prophets
and M essengers, and the chosen ones o f hum ankind, and that it can
only occur in one o f the follow ing ways:
Either Allah (4s) speaks through inspiration, which is sent directly
to the heart o f the M essenger, w ithout sending an angel and w ithout
speaking directly to him;
or He speaks directly, but it is ^from behind a veil]) as happened to
M oosa ibn ‘Imran, Kaleem ar-Rahm an (the one to w hom the M ost
G racious spoke directly);
or A llah sp eaks through an angelic m essenger, ^ b y sending a
messenger]-) such as Jibreel or another angel, ^to reveal, by A llah’s
leave]) that is, by the perm ission o f his Lord, not on the basis o f mere
whim s and desires.
^Verily He is M ost High]), sublim e in His essence, sublim e and
great in His attributes, sublim e in His actions. He has subjugated all
things, and all creatures have subm itted to Him.

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^M ost W ise^ for He does everything that is appropriate, and is wise


in all that He creates and prescribes.
^Likew ise)? ju s t as We revealed to the M essengers w ho cam e
before you,
«(We have revealed to you [O M uham m ad] a life-giving m essage by
Our command)? nam ely this noble Q u r’an, which He calls life-giving.
The Q u r’an gives life to hearts and souls, through w hich both w orldly
and spiritual interests are revived, because o f what it contains o f much
good and abundant knowledge.
It is a pure blessing from Allah to His M essenger ( i|§ ) and His
believing slaves, without any effort on their part. Hence He says: «(You
knew nothing)? before it came down to you d o f the scripture or matters
o f faith)? that is, you had no know ledge o f the texts o f the previous
scriptures or o f faith, and you had no experience in im plem enting
divine instructions; rather you w ere unlettered, unable to read or
write, then this Book cam e to you, which ^W e have m ad e... a light
whereby We guide w hom ever We will o f O ur slaves^, by m eans o f
w hich they find illum ination in the darkness o f disbelief, innovation
and whim s and desires that lead to doom ; by m eans o f it they com e
to know reality and are guided by it to the straight path.
^Verily you are indeed calling people to a straight path)? that is,
you are show ing it to them and explaining it, encouraging them to
follow it, forbidding them to do the opposite and w arning against
that. Then Allah describes the straight path:
^th e path o f Allah, to W hom belongs all that is in the heavens
and all that is on earth^ that is, the path w hich A llah has prescribed
for H is slaves and has told them that it leads to H im and to His
paradise.
^V erily the affairs o f all will ultim ately com e back to A llah [for
judgem ent])? that is, all affairs, good and bad, will return to Him and
He w ill requite everyone according to his deeds; if they are good

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72 I Tafseer as-Sa'di J u z '25

then the outcom e will be good, and if they are evil then the outcom e
will be bad.

This is the end of the commentary on Soorat ash-Shoora.


All praise and thanks are for Allah, and may the blessings and
peace of Allah be upon Prophet Muhammad ( ^ ) , his family, and
his Companions abundantly until the Day of Judgement.

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43.
Soorat az-Zukhruf
( \ 1akki)

In the name o f Allah,


the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful

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43:1. H a’. Meem.


43:2. By the clear Book,
43:3. verily, We have made it an Arabic Q u r’an so that you may
understand,
43:4. and verily it is in the Mother of the Book [al-Lawh al-Mahfoodh]9
with Us, sublime and full o f wisdom.

9 Al-Lawh al-Mahfoodh: the Preserved Tablet, the place where the


decrees of Allah are kept. All the divinely-revealed Books originated
from there, hence it is called the Mother (that is, source or origin) of the
Book.

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74 I Tafseer as-Sa'di J u z ’25

43:5. Should We, then, withdraw this reminder from you altogether,
because you are a people transgressing beyond all bounds?

^B y the clear Book)? - this is an oath by the Q u r’an about the


Q u r’an. A llah sw ears by the clear Book to indicate that it clarifies
everything that people need to know about m atters pertaining to this
world, religion and the hereafter.
^verily, We have m ade it an A rabic Q u r’an)? this is the subject
o f the oath: Allah has m ade it in the m ost eloquent and clearest o f
languages. Then He m entions the w isdom behind that, w hich is ^so
that you m ay understand)? its words and m eanings, because it is easy
to understand.
«jand verily it)? nam ely this Book ^is in the M other o f the Book
[al-Lawh al-M ahfoodh] with U s^, among those on high, in the highest
and best rank,
^ su b lim e and full o f wisdom )? that is, it is sublim e and held in
the highest esteem , and it is full o f w isdom in w hat it contains o f
com m ands and prohibitions, and stories. There is no ruling in it that
is contrary to wisdom , justice and equity.
T hen A llah tells us that His w isdom and grace dictate that He
should not leave His slaves neglected without sending a M essenger to
them or sending dow n a Book to them , even if they are wrongdoers.
Hence He says:
^(Should We, then, withdraw this rem inder from you altogether,
because you are a people transgressing beyond all bounds?)? That
is, should We turn aw ay from you and not send down the rem inder
to you, and w ithdraw it from you because you turned aw ay and did
not subm it to it? R ather We send down the Book to you and explain
to you everything in it. Then if you believe and are guided, it is to
your own benefit, otherw ise p ro o f is established against you and you
know where you stand.

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Soorat az-Zukhruf (6-8) | 75

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43:6. How many a Prophet did We send to the earlier nations!


43:7. No Prophet came to them but they ridiculed him.
43:8. So We destroyed them, although they were stronger in power
than them [Quraysh], And the stories o f the earlier nations have
already been mentioned [in the Q ur’an, as a lesson].

Here A llah says: this is O ur w ay with people: We do not leave


them neglected. «{How m any a Prophet did We send to the earlier
nations]?, enjoining them to w orship A llah alone, with no partner or
associate, but they persisted in their disbelief.
«fNo Prophet cam e to them but they ridiculed him)? rejecting the
m essage he brought and arrogantly turning aw ay from the truth.
«|So We destroyed them, although they were stronger in power than
them [Q uraysh])j that is, they were stronger in term s o f their deeds
and they m ade a m ore im pressive m ark on the land.
And the stories o f the earlier nations have already been m entioned [in
the Q u r’an, as a lesson]^; We have already explained to you lessons
that m ay be taken from that and how that m ay serve as a deterrent
against disbelief and denial.

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76 | Tafseer as-Sa ‘di j uz •25

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43:9. If you ask them who created the heavens and the earth, they
will surely say: The Almighty, All-Knowing created them.
43:10. It is He Who has spread out the earth for you and has traced out
paths for you therein, so that you may find your way.
43:11. And it is He Who sends down water from the sky in due measure,
and We give life thereby to a dead land. In like manner you will
be brought forth [from your graves],
43:12. And it is He Who created all types o f things, and made for you
ships and animals on which you ride,
43:13. so that you may settle yourselves on their backs and, when you
have settled thereon, you may remember the blessings o f your
Lord and say: Glory be to Him W ho has made this to be o f
service to us, for we could not have gained control over it by
ourselves.
43:14. It is to our Lord that we will surely return.

H ere A llah (4g) tells us about the polytheists and that ^ I f you
ask them w ho created the heavens and the earth, they will surely
say)? that A llah alone created them , with no partner or associate, the
Alm ighty to W hose might all creatures submit, the All-Knowing Who
know s the outw ard and inward aspects o f all things, and knows their
beginning and end. If they affirm that, then how can they ascribe to
Him a son, spouse or partner? How can they ascribe as partners to
Him any that does not create or grant provision, that has no pow er to
cause death or give life?

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Soorat az-Zukhruf (9-14) | 77

Then Allah m entions evidence which is indicative o f the perfect


nature o f His blessings and might, by pointing out what He has created
for His slaves o f this earth w hich He spread out and m ade stable for
them , so that they can do w hatever they w ant on it.
^and has traced out paths for you therein )j that is, He has created
routes for you through the m ountain chains, so that you m ay reach
the regions beyond the m ountains
dso that you m ay find your way)? by travelling through those routes,
and not get lost, and so that you m ay be guided to the right path when
you contem plate that and reflect upon it.
cjAnd it is He Who sends down water from the sky in due measure)?,
not too m uch and not too little. It is sent dow n as needed, not so little
that there will be no benefit in it and not so m uch that it will cause
harm to people and the land; rather He sends people w hat they need
o f it and saves the land from hardship thereby. H ence He says:
dand We give life thereby to a dead land)? that is, We revive it after
its death.
if)In like m anner you w ill be brought forth [from your graves])? that
is, ju st as He gives life to the dead, lifeless land by m eans o f water,
He w ill give you life after you have com pleted y o u r set tim e in
al-barzakh, so that He m ay requite you for your deeds.
And it is He W ho created all types o f things)? that is, all types o f
things that the earth produces, and o f them selves (different types), and
o f (other) things o f w hich they have no know ledge (cf 36: 36), such
as night and day, heat and cold, m ale and fem ale, and other things.
*(and m ade for you ships)? both sailing ships and those that are driven
by m echanical m eans, in w hich you travel
^and anim als on which you ride, so that you m ay settle yourselves
on their backs)? - thus you settle on board ships and on the backs o f
riding anim als
dand, when you have settled thereon, you may remem ber the blessings
o f your Lord)? by acknow ledging the blessings o f the O ne W ho has

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78 I Tafseer as-Sa'di J u z ’25

m ade them to be o f service to you, and praising Him for that. Hence
A llah says: «(and say: G lory be to H im W ho has m ade this to be
o f service to us, for w e could not have gained control over it by
ourselves)* that is, w ere it not for His m aking them to be o f service
to us, we w ould not have been able to gain control over it. But by
His kindness and generosity, He has m ade it to be o f service and has
m ade its m eans available.
W hat is m eant here is to highlight the fact that the Lord, W ho is as
described here as being the B estow er o f all these favours, is the only
One W ho is deserving o f w orship, prayers and prostration.

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43:15. Yet they ascribe to Him from among His slaves offspring! Verily
man is indeed clearly ungrateful.

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Soorat az-Zukhruf (15-25) | 79

43:16. Has He taken for H im self daughters from what He has created,
and favoured you with sons?
43:17. When news is brought to one o f them o f [the birth o f a daughter],
such as he ascribes to the Most Gracious, his face darkens and
he is filled with inward rage.
43:18. Or [do they ascribe to Allah] those who are brought up to be
adorned [and look pretty] and are not able to present a clear
[and strong] argument in the event o f disputation?10
43:19. They regard the angels, who are slaves o f the Most Gracious,
as female. Did they witness their creation? Their testimony will
be recorded and they will be questioned [concerning it].
43:20. They say: If the Most Gracious had so willed, we would not
have worshipped them. They have no knowledge [or proof] o f
that; they do nothing but conjecture.
43:21. Or have We given them a book before this to which they are
holding fast?
43:22. In fact they say: We found our forefathers following a certain
path, and we are following in their footsteps.
43:23. Likewise, We never sent any wam er before you to a city but its
affluent ones said: We found our forefathers following a certain
path, and we are following in their footsteps.
43:24. [The wamer] said: Even if I bring you better guidance than that
which you found your forefathers following? They said: Verily
we disbelieve in that with which you have been sent.
43:25. So We exacted retribution upon them; so see what was the fate
o f those who disbelieved.

H ere A llah tells us o f the abhorrent nature o f the view o f the


polytheists who ascribed offspring to Allah (*?s), when He is the One,

10 The issue here is not only that they attributed offspring to Allah, but they
ascribed to Him what they regarded as inferior (daughters) whilst desiring
for themselves what they regarded as superior (sons).

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80 | Tafseeras-Sa'di J u z '25

the Unique, the Eternal, W ho has not taken any spouse or child, and
nothing is like unto Him. Such ideas are false for a num ber o f reasons,
including the following:
• All creatures are His slaves, and a slave cannot be an offspring.
• The child is part o f his father, but A llah (4s) is distinct from
His creation; He is distinct from them in His attributes and
majesty, w hereas the child is a part o f the father. Therefore it is
im possible for Allah (4c) to have offspring.
• They claim ed that the angels were the daughters o f Allah, but it
is well known that daughters are the lesser o f the two categories.
So how could Allah have daughters and choose for them sons
and give them precedence in that regard? In that case they
w ould be better than Allah - exalted be Allah far above such
a thing.
• The category that they attributed to Allah, nam ely daughters, is
the lesser o f the two categories and the m ore hateful to them,
to the extent that because o f their hatred th ereo f «[When news
is brought to one o f them o f [the birth o f a daughter], such as
he ascribes to the M ost Gracious, his face darkens^ because o f
his intense hatred and anger, so how could they ascribe to Allah
that w hich they them selves hate?
• The fem ale is lacking in her attributes and in her speech and
eloquence. Hence Allah says: ^ O r [do they ascribe to Allah]
those w ho are brought up to be adorned [and look pretty]
that is, to beautify them selves w ith adornm ent because their
beauty is lacking, so they are beautified with external elements,
^and are not able to present a clear [and strong] argum ent in
the event o f disputation^ in which a person should show his
ability to present his case; in such situations the female is unable
to express the idea she has in m ind, so how can they attribute
daughters to Allah (4c)?

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• They regarded the angels, who are slaves o f the M ost G racious,
as female, thus showing disrespect to the angels who are close to
Allah, and they raised them from the status o f hum ble slaves to
the status o f partners to A llah in some o f His unique attributes,
then they brought them down from the status o f m ale to female.
G lory be to the One W ho highlights the contradictions o f those
who tell lies against Him and oppose His M essengers.
• Allah refuted their argum ent by stating that they did not witness
His creation o f the angels, so how can they speak o f a m atter
o f w hich everyone know s they have no know ledge? But they
will inevitably be questioned about w hat they said and w hat
was recorded against them , and they will be punished for it.
^T h ey say: I f the M ost G racious had so w illed, w e w ould not
have w orshipped them p they argued for their w orship o f the angels
by saying that it was because o f the divine will; this is an argum ent
that the polytheists alw ays com e up with, but it is a false argum ent
in and o f itself, both on a rational basis and according to the divine
texts. No wise man w ould accept the use o f the divine decree as an
excuse for his actions. Even if a person uses this argum ent once, he
will not be able to use it every time.
W ith regard to Islam ic teachings, A llah (4c) has show n that it
is invalid to use the divine decree as justification, and He has not
m entioned anyone using this argum ent except the polytheists who
disbelieved in His M essengers. For A llah (4?) has established p roof
against people, so there is no argument that anyone can use on the basis
o f this idea. Hence Allah (4s) says here: ^T hey have no know ledge
[or proof] o f that; they do nothing but conjecture^ that is, they are
basing their argument on speculation for which they have no evidence,
and they are confused.
Then He says: «(Or have We given them a book before this to which
they are holding fastjj and that tells them that their deeds and words
are valid? That is not the case, for A llah sent M uham m ad («i§) to

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them as a w araer, and no other w am er cam e to them. In other words,


there is no rationale and no textual evidence for their argum ent. If
both are ruled out, then it can be nothing but false.
Yes, they have a very flim sy specious argument, which is that they
are follow ing their m isguided forefathers, on the basis o f w hich the
disbelievers always justify their rejection o f the call o f the Messengers.
Hence A llah says here:
din fact they say: We found our forefathers follow ing a certain pathp
that is, religion
^and we are follow ing in their footsteps^ that is, therefore w e will
not follow what M uham m ad ( i|§ ) brought.
^L ikew ise, We never sent any w am er before you to a city but its
affluent onesjj that is, those w ho w ere well off, the elite w ho were
deceived by their w orldly status and wealth, and w ere too arrogant
to follow the truth
«fsaid: We found our forefathers follow ing a certain path, and we are
follow ing in their footsteps^ that is, these people are not com ing up
w ith anything new or unprecedented, and they are not the first ones
to say such things. This argum ent from these m isguided polytheists,
that they w ere follow ing their m isguided forefathers, is not aim ed at
seeking the truth and right guidance; rather it is pure stubbornness,
the aim o f which is to support what they have o f falsehood.
Hence every M essenger said to those w ho opposed him on the
basis o f this false specious argum ent: ^E ven if I bring you better
guidance than that w hich you found your forefathers follow ing?^
That is, will you follow me for the sake o f guidance?
^T hey said: Verily we disbelieve in that w ith w hich you have been
sent)? thus it is know n that they did not w ant to follow truth and right
guidance; rather all they w anted was to follow falsehood and whim s
and desires.

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Soorat az-Zukhruf (26-32) | 83

^ S o We exacted retribution upon them jj for their rejection o f


the truth and their denial th ereo f on the basis o f this false specious
argument.
«fso see w hat was the fate o f those who disbelieved^ and let these
people bew are o f persisting in their rejection, lest they m eet the sam e
fate.

O 0

43:26. And [remember] when Ibraheem said to his father and his
people: I disavow all that you worship,
43:27. except Him Who created me; He will surely guide me.
43:28. And he left it as a word to endure among his progeny, so that
they might come back [to it].11
43:29. But 1 allowed these people [Quraysh] and their forefathers to
enjoy the good things o f life, until there came to them the truth
and a Messenger making things clear.
43:30. But when the truth came to them, they said: This is magic, and
we definitely reject it.

11 Every time some of his progeny drifted away from it and disbelieved or
ascribed partners to Allah, they were to come back to this word.

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43:31. And they said: Why was this Q u r’an not sent down to some
prominent man from [either of] the two cities [Makkah orTaif]?
43:32. Is it they who distribute the blessings o f your Lord? It is We
Who distribute their livelihood among them in the life o f this
world, and We raise some o f them above others in ranks, so that
they may serve one another.12 And the blessings o f your Lord
are better than what they accumulate [of wealth].13

Here Allah B s ) tells us o f the religion o f Ibraheem His close


friend, which the People o f the Book and the polytheists all claim to
belong to and follow. Allah tells us about his religion, which he left
as a legacy am ong his offspring:
^A n d [rem em ber] w hen Ibraheem said to his father and his
people)? who had taken gods besides A llah that they w orshipped and
sought to draw near to.
«fl disavow all that you worship)? that is, I hate it and I avoid and
oppose those who do that
^except Him Who created m ep for I take Him as my ally and protector,
and I hope that He will guide me to knowledge o f the truth and enable
m e to act upon it, for ju s t as He created m e and cared for m e by
m aking available to me all that is good for my physical and worldly
well-being, so too ^H e will surely guide me)? to that which is good
for my religious w ell-being and m y w ell-being in the hereafter.
^A nd he left it)? that is, this praisew orthy attitude, which is the
m ost im portant o f all and the basis o f all those characteristics, nam ely

12 People vary with regard to the means that have to do with earning a living:
some may be smarter than others, or have different skills and aptitudes.
This variation makes it essential for people to serve one another in order
to meet the needs of all, thus bringing them together and creating harmony
among them. (al-Baydawi)
13 They had no say in the allocation of the blessings of prophethood and
revelation, just as they have no say in the allocation of provision and
means of livelihood.

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sincerity in w orship o f A llah alone and disavow ing the w orship o f


everything besides Him
ijas a word to endure am ong his progeny)* that is, his offspring
^ so that they m ight com e back [to it])* because he was well known
for it, and he gave instructions to his offspring, Is-haq and Ya‘qoob.
A nd they them selves rem inded one another o f it.
Because this word rem ained am ong his descendants (nam ely the
A rabs) until they began to live a life o f affluence and transgression,
A llah (tfe) says: ^ B u t I allow ed these people [Q uraysh] and their
forefathers to enjoy the good things o f life)* by letting them enjoy
all kinds o f desires, until that becam e their ultim ate goal and aim,
and love th ere o f kept grow ing stronger in their hearts, until that
becam e second nature to them and becam e w ell-entrenched beliefs
o f theirs
^until there cam e to them the truth)* concerning w hich there is no
doubt or confusion w hatsoever
^and a M essenger m aking things clear)* that is, with a clear m essage
for w hich he had clear evidence, by m eans o f his ch aracter and
m iracles, and w hat he brought, by m eans o f w hich he confirm ed the
m essage o f the previous M essengers, and by m eans o f the m essage
itself that he brought.
«|But w hen the truth came to them)* that w ould dictate that the one
w ho has the least fear o f Allah and the least religion should accept
it and follow it,
«fthey said: This is magic, and we definitely reject it)*. This is because
o f their great stubbornness and opposition, for they could not stop
at m erely turning aw ay from it or m erely rejecting it. They w ere not
content until they im pugned and criticised it in the w orst m anner,
regarding it as equivalent to m agic, w hich no one brings but the m ost
evil o f people and the w orst liars and fabricators. W hat m ade them
do that w as their transgression, w hich resulted from what A llah had
caused them and their forefathers to enjoy o f w orldly pleasures.

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^A nd they saidjj, m aking a suggestion to A llah on the basis o f


their corrupt reasoning:
«(Why w as this Q u r’an not sent down to som e prom inent m an from
[either of] the two cities [M akkah or Taif]?^ That is, som eone who
was prom inent and respected in their view, from am ong the people
o f M akkah or o f Taif, such as al-W aleed ibn al-M ugheerah and his
ilk, w ho w ere held in high esteem by them.
A llah said, rejecting their suggestion: «fls it they w ho distribute
the blessings o f your L ord?^ That is, are they the storekeepers o f the
m ercy o f Allah, and do they have control o f it, so that they m ay give
prophethood and the m essage to w hom ever they wish, and withhold
it from w hoever they wish?
«flt is We W ho distribute their livelihood am ong them in the life o f
this world, and We raise some o f them above others in ranks, so that
they m ay serve one another^ that is, in the life o f this world
«|And^ in fact cjthe blessings o f your Lord are better than w hat they
accum ulate [o f w ealth]^ in this world.
As w orldly livelihood and provision are in the Hand o f Allah (ie ),
it is He W ho distributes it am ong His slaves, so He gives abundant
provision to w hom ever He will and restricts it for w hom ever He
will, according to His wisdom. Therefore it is m ore appropriate that
His religious blessings, the highest o f w hich is the status o f being
a Prophet or M essenger, should be in the Hand o f Allah, for Allah
knows best w here to place His m essage.
Thus it is known that their suggestions w ere flawed and invalid,
and that the control o f all things, both religious and worldly, is in the
Hand o f Allah alone. This proved to them that they were wrong in their
suggestion regarding the m atter (o f the appointm ent o f a M essenger),
for they have no control o v er it at all. R ather their suggestion is
w rongdoing on their part and is a rejection o f the truth.

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With regard to their words dW hy was this Q u r’an not sent down to
some prominent man from [either of] the two cities [Makkah orTaif]?^,
if they understood the true quality o f m en and the characteristics
by m eans o f w hich a m an m ay be deem ed as being o f high quality
and having high status before Allah and before people, they w ould
realise that M uham m ad ibn ‘Abdullah ibn ‘A bdul-M uttalib (<|§) is
the greatest o f all men in status, the m ost honourable, the m ost perfect
in reasoning, the m ost abundant in know ledge, the m ost perfect in
w isdom , aim and resolve, the m ost p erfect in character, the m ost
m erciful and com passionate, the m ost guided and the m ost righteous.
He is the pinnacle o f perfection, for he acquired the best qualities o f
men. He was the man o f the world for all ages. This was acknowledged
by his friends and enem ies alike, so how could the polytheists give
precedence to others over him, who could not acquire even an atom ’s
w eight o f his perfection or o f his resolve and w isdom ? For som eone
to take as his god, that he w orships and calls upon, and seeks to draw
close to, an idol or a tree or a rock, that could not cause harm or
bring benefit, and could not give or w ithhold, and is a burden on its
worshipper, needing som eone to take care o f it - can this be anything
but the action o f fools and crazy people?
How can such a person be regarded as great or prom inent? How
can he be given precedence over the final M essenger and the leader o f
the sons o f Adam («!§)? But those w ho disbelieve do not understand.
This verse highlights A llah’s wisdom in giving precedence to some
people over others in this world, ^and We raise some o f them above
others in ranks, so that they m ay serve one another)* w ith different
skills and abilities.
If all people were equal in term s o f w ealth and did not need one
another, they would not be able to m eet m any o f their needs.
T his indicates that His spiritual blessings are better than w orldly
blessings, as Allah O s) says elsewhere:

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«{Say: In the grace o f Allah and in His m ercy - in that let them rejoice.
That is far better than all they could accum ulate, j? (Yoonus 10: 58)

43:33. Were it not that all humankind would follow one path [namely
disbelief], We would have granted to those who disbelieve in
the Most Gracious roofs o f silver for their houses, and staircases
[of silver] on which to climb,
43:34. and doors [of silver] for their houses, and couches [of silver]
on which to recline,
43:35. and [all these things made] o f gold too. But all o f that is but
enjoyments o f the life o f this world, and the hereafter with your
Lord is [only] for those who fear Him.

Here Allah tells us that this world is w orthless before Him, and
that w ere it not for His kindness and m ercy towards His slaves, over
which nothing takes precedence, He would have granted a life o f ease
and luxury in this w orld to those who disbelieve, and He w ould have
granted them proofs o f silver for their houses, and staircases [of silver]
on which to clim b^ up to their roofs, ^and doors [o f silver] for their
houses, and couches [o f silver] on which to recline^.
And He w ould have given them ^[all these things m ade] o f gold
too]?.
But w hat prevented Him from doing that was His m ercy towards
His slaves, lest they hasten to disbelieve and com m it m any sins
because o f their love o f w orldly gain.

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This indicates that He m ay w ithhold some worldly gains from His


slaves, from com m unities or from individuals, in their best interests.
This w orld is not w orth a g n at’s w ing before Allah, and all the things
mentioned are but enjoym ents o f the life o f this world; they are tainted
with stress, g rief and sorrow and are transient. The hereafter is better
before Allah for those who fear their Lord by obeying His com m ands
and heeding His prohibitions, because its blessings are perfect and
complete in all aspects, in paradise there is everything that souls could
desire and could delight the eyes, and they will abide therein forever.
How great is the difference betw een the two realms!

o o

43:36. Whoever turns away from the reminder o f the Most Gracious
[the Q ur’an], We will assign to him a devil to be his constant
companion.
43:37. Verily they [the devils] bar them from the [right] path, but they
think that they are rightly guided.
43:38. Then when [such a one] comes to Us, he will say [to his devil
companion]: Would that there was between me and you the
distance between east and west. What a wretched companion!
43:39. [It will be said to them:] As you have done wrong, it will not
benefit you today that you are to share the punishment.

Here Allah tells us o f the severe punishm ent for those who turn
aw ay from His reminder:

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^W h o ev er turns aw ay from the rem in d er o f the M ost Gracious)?


nam ely the Holy Q u r’an w hich is the greatest m ercy that the M ost
G racious has bestow ed upon H is slaves; w hoever accepts it has
accepted the best o f gifts and has attained the m ost sublim e aim s
and goals, but w hoever turns aw ay from it and rejects it has failed
and is exposed to loss in such a w ay that he will never be blessed
after that, and the M ost G racious will assign to him a rebellious devil
to accom pany him, m ake false prom ises to him , raise his hopes and
incite him to com m it sins.
^Verily they [the devils] bar them from the [right] path^ that is,
the straight path and the true religion
«[but they think that they are rightly guided)? because the devil makes
falsehood fair-seem ing to them and m akes them turn aw ay from the
truth, thus com bining the two m atters.
If it is asked: does this person have any excuse because he thinks
that he is rightly guided, although he is not? The response is: no, he
and his ilk have no excuse, because the cause o f their ignorance is
turning away from the rem inder o f Allah, even though they are able to
choose guidance. They show ed no interest in guidance, even though
they w ere able to do so, and they chose falsehood. So the fault is
theirs and the error is theirs.
This is the condition o f the one who turns aw ay from the rem inder
o f Allah in this world, with his devil com panion; he is in a state o f
m isguidance and error, as for him. the facts are turned upside down.
As for his situation when he com es to his Lord in the hereafter,
it will be the w orst o f situations, and he will express regret, sorrow
and g rief that will not help him at all, and he will disavow his devil
companion. Hence Allah (4c) says: ^Then when [such a one] comes to
Us, he will say [to his devil companion]: Would that there was between
m e and you the distance betw een east and west. W hat a w retched
companion!)?. This is like the passage in w hich A llah (4c) says:

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«[0n that day, the w rongdoer will bite on his hands and say: Would
that I had taken a path w ith the M essenger. Alas for me! Would that
I had not taken S o-and-so as a friend! He led m e astray from the
R em inder [the Q u r’an] after it had com e to me. And Shaytan is ever
treacherous to man.'p (al-Furqan 25: 27-29)
4 [It will be said to them :] As you have done w rong, it will not
benefit you today that you are to share the punishm ent^ that is, on
the Day o f R esurrection, it will not benefit you that you are to share
the punishm ent, you and your devil com panions and close friends.
T hat is because you shared in w rongdoing, so you w ill share the
consequences and punishm ent thereof.
But you will not find any consolation in the fact that others are also
suffering, for when calam ity strikes in this w orld and m any suffer as
a result, they find a little consolation in one another, but the calam ity
o f the hereafter consists o f all types o f punishm ent, and there will
be no relief, not even this kind o f relief (nam ely the consolation o f
it being shared with others). We ask You, O our Lord, for well-being
and relief, by Your mercy.

0 0

43:40. Can you [O Muhammad] make the deaf to hear, or guide the
blind or those who are clearly misguided?
43:41. If We take you away [in death], We will surely exact retribution
upon them.

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43:42. but if We show you that [punishment] o f which We warned them,


then [you will see a retribution that they could not escape]; verily
We have power over them.
43:43. So hold fast to that which has been revealed to you. Verily you
are on a straight path.
43:44. Verily it [the Q ur’an] is an honour for you and your people, and
surely you will all be questioned [concerning it].
43:45. Ask those o f Our Messengers whom We sent before you [O
Muhammad]: Did We ever appoint any gods to be worshipped
besides the Most Gracious?

H ere A llah says to His M essenger («|§), consoling him for the
refusal o f the disbelievers to respond to him , and telling him that
there is no goodness or purity in them that w ould cause them to
follow guidance:
^C an you [O M uhammad] make the d eaf to hear, or guide the blind or
those who are clearly m isguided?^ They are aware o f being misguided
and are content with it.
Just as the d eaf person cannot hear sounds and the blind person
cannot see, the one w ho is clearly m isguided cannot be guided. Their
natural inclinations and way o f thinking becam e corrupted when they
turned aw ay from the rem inder and acquired corrupt beliefs and evil
characteristics which prevented them from being guided, and dictated
that they should go further on the path o f doom.
T here is nothing left for such people except punishm ent and
chastisem ent, either in this w orld or in the hereafter. Hence Allah
(4«) says: ^ I f We take you aw ay [in death]. We will surely exact
retribution upon them ^ that is, if We take you aw ay in death before
We show you w hat We have prom ised them o f punishm ent, then you
may be certain on the basis o f Our truthful promise that We will wreak
vengeance upon them.

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^but if We show you that [punishment] o f which We warned them,


then [you will see a retribution that they could not escape]; verily We
have pow er over them ^, but that depends on w hat divine w isdom
dictates o f hastening or delaying the punishment. This is your situation
and the situation o f these disbelievers.
^So hold fast to that which has been revealed to you)* in your deeds
and by adopting the attitude that is enjoined upon you, calling others
to it and striving to im plem ent it in yourself and in others.
^V erily you are on a straight path)* that leads to A llah and to His
paradise. This is som ething w hich dictates that you should adhere
strongly to it and be guided by it. If you know that it is true, ju st and
right, then you will be basing your affairs on a strong foundation at a
time when others are basing their affairs on doubts, illusions, injustice
and wrongdoing.
^V erily it [the Q u r’an] is an honour for you and your p eo p le^
that is, it is a source o f pride for you, a great virtue and an im m ense
blessing, the value o f which no one could estim ate or describe. It also
points out to you w hat is good for you in this w orld and the hereafter,
and urges you to adhere to it, and it points out to you what is evil and
warns you against it.
^an d surely you will all be questioned [concerning it])* - did you
adhere to it, attain honour thereby and benefit from it, or did you fail
to adhere to it, so that it becam e p ro o f against you as a result o f your
rejecting this blessing?
A sk those o f O ur M essengers w hom We sent before you [O
M uhammad]: Did We ever appoint any gods to be w orshipped besides
the M ost Gracious)*, such th at the p o ly th eists have any kind o f
argum ent by claim ing that they are follow ing one o f the M essengers?
If you were to ask them and find out about their lives, you w ould
not find anyone am ong them who called for taking any other gods
besides Allah. M oreover, all o f the M essengers, from the first o f them

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to the last, called people to the worship o f A llah alone, with no partner
or associate. A llah (4c) says:
Indeed, We sent to every nation a M essenger [saying]: W orship
Allah [alone] and shun false g o d s...]? (an-Nahl 16: 36)
Every M essenger whom Allah sent said to his people:
«f...w orship Allah; you have no god but H e...]J (al-Mu’minoon23:23)
This indicates that the polytheists have no foundation for their
ascription o f partners to Allah, whether on the basis o f sound reasoning
or any report from the M essengers.

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43:46. Indeed We sent Moosa with O ur signs to Pharaoh and his


chiefs, and he said: Verily I am the Messenger o f the Lord o f the
worlds.
43:47. But when he came to them with Our signs, they ridiculed them.

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43:48. Every sign We showed them was greater than the one that came
before it, and We afflicted them with punishm ent14 so that they
might turn in repentance.
43:49. They said: O m agician, call upon your Lord for us, on the
strength o f the promise He has made to you;15 we will surely
accept guidance.
43:50. But when We rem oved the punishm ent from them , they
immediately broke their promise.
43:51. Pharaoh proclaimed to his people: O my people, does not the
dominion o f Egypt belong to me, and these rivers flowing at
my feet? Do you not see?
43:52. Am I not better than this contemptible wretch who cannot even
express him self clearly?16
43:53. Why have no armlets o f gold been bestowed upon him, and why
have no angels come with him to support him?
43:54. Thus he made fools o f his people and they obeyed him. They
were indeed a rebellious and wicked people.
43:55. When they provoked Our wrath, We exacted retribution upon
them and We drowned them all.
43:56. Thus We made them a precedent and an example for those who
would come after them.

Having said ^A sk those o f O ur M essengers whom We sent before


you [O M uhammad]: Did We ever appoint any gods to be worshipped
besides the M ost Gracious?)* (43: 45), Allah B e ) then describes the
situation o f M oosa and his call, which is the m ost w ell-know n o f the

14 Some of the signs came in the form of punishments (floods, locusts, lice,
frogs and blood), as mentioned in al-A‘raf (7:133).
15 The promise was that if they believed in Moosa, Allah would relieve them
of the punishment.
16 Pharaoh referred to Moosa in these terms because he had a speech
impediment.

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calls o f the M essengers, because A llah (M ) m entions it a great deal


in His Book, and tells us his story with Pharaoh.
^ In d e ed We sent M oosa w ith O ur signs)* w hich d efinitively
confirm ed the truth o f w hat he brought, such as the staff, the snake,
the locusts, the lice and so on
^to Pharaoh and his chiefs, and he said: Verily I am the M essenger o f
the Lord o f the worlds)*. Thus he called them to acknow ledge their
Lord, and told them not to w orship anything other than Him.
^B u t w hen he cam e to them w ith O ur signs, they ridiculed them)*
that is, they rejected them, denied them and m ocked them, wrongfully
and arrogantly. That w as not because o f any shortcom ing in the signs
or any lack o f clarity in them. Hence Allah says:
^E very sign We showed them was greater than the one that came
before it)* that is, the later sign was greater than the earlier sign
^and We afflicted them with punishment)* such as the locusts, lice,
frogs, and blood, distinct signs,
^so that they m ight turn in repentance)*, subm it to Allah, and give up
their polytheism and evil.
^T hey said^, w hen the punishm ent befell them:
^ O magician)* m eaning M oosa (§1^). This w as either by w ay o f
ridiculing him, or because for them addressing someone in this manner
was a kind o f praise, so they beseeched him by addressing him as they
addressed their so-called scholars, nam ely the m agicians. Therefore
they said: m agician, call upon your Lord for us, on the strength o f
the prom ise He has m ade to y o u ^ that is, by virtue o f w hat Allah has
bestowed specifically upon you and has favoured you with o f favours
and virtues, asking H im to relieve us o f the punishm ent;
^w e will surely accept guidance)* if A llah relieves us o f it.
dB ut when We rem oved the punishm ent from them, they im mediately
broke their promise)* that is, they did not keep their word; rather they
broke their prom ise and persisted in their disbelief. This is like the
verse in which Allah B g) says:

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^ S o We sent against them floods, locusts, lice, frogs and blood,


distinct signs, but they show ed arrogance and w ere w icked people.
W hen the punishm ent befell them, they said: O Moosa, call upon your
Lord for us, on the strength o f the prom ise He has m ade to you; if you
remove the punishm ent from us, we will surely believe in you and we
will let the C hildren o f Israel go with you. But w hen We rem oved the
punishment from them until an appointed term which they w ere bound
to reach, they im m ediately broke their promise.)* (al-A 'raf7: 133-135)
^Pharaoh proclaim ed to his people)*, show ing arrogant pride in
his falsehood, having been deceived by w hat he had o f pow er and
dom inion, and behaving in a tyrannical m anner because o f the wealth
and troops that he had:
my people, does not the dom inion o f Egypt belong to me)? that
is, am I not the one who owns and controls all o f that?
dand these rivers flow ing at my feet)* that is, the stream s that were
diverted from the N ile to flow am ong the palaces and gardens
^D o you not see^ my vast dom inion?
T his stem m ed from his great ignorance, for he took pride in
som ething that was not connected to his attitude and character, and
he did not take pride in p raisew orthy ch aracteristics or righteous
deeds.
^A m I not better than this contem ptible wretch)? the person he
referred to - m ay A llah curse him - as a contem ptible w retch was
Moosa ibn ‘Imran, the one to whom the M ost Gracious spoke directly,
who was o f high status before Allah. In other w ords he was saying:
I am honourable and m ighty, and he is lowly, contem ptible and
despised, so which o f us is better?
^who)?, furtherm ore, ^cannot even express him self clearly)? because
he is not eloquent in speech. This is not som ething sham eful at all,
because he was still able to express what was in his heart, even though
speaking was difficult for him.

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Then Pharaoh said: ^W hy have no armlets o f gold been bestowed


upon him)? that is, w hy can M oosa not be like that, adorned w ith
jew ellery and arm lets?
^and w hy have no angels com e with him to support him)? and help
him with his call?
^T hus he m ade fools o f his people and they obeyed him)? that is,
he insulted their intelligence by giving them these flim sy argum ents
that could not prove anything and w ere not based on facts; they could
not prove anything, true or false, and could not be accepted by any
except those w ho w ere w eak-m inded.
W hat p roof was there to indicate that Pharaoh was in the right, just
because the dom inion o f Egypt belonged to him and its rivers flowed
at his feet? W hat p roof was there to indicate that w hat M oosa brought
was false? Was it the fact that he had few followers, had difficulty in
speaking and Allah did not bestow arm lets upon him ? But Pharaoh
was addressing a people w ho did not think rationally, so w hatever
he said they w ould accept, regardless o f w hether it was true or false,
for ^T hey w ere indeed a rebellious and wicked people)?. Because o f
their wickedness, Allah gave Pharaoh control over them and he made
polytheism and evil fair-seem ing to them.
^W hen they provoked O ur wrath)? that is, incurred O ur anger by
their deeds,
«|We exacted retribution upon them and We drow ned them all. Thus
We m ade them a precedent and an exam ple for those w ho w ould
com e after them)? so that they m ight learn lessons from them and
pay heed to their story.

0 0

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( i o - o v

43:57. When the son o f Maryam was mentioned as an example, your


people [O Muhammad] laughed and jeered,17
43:58. and said: Are our gods better, or he? They only mentioned him to
you for the sake o f argument. Indeed they are an argumentative
people.
43:59. He was but a slave whom We blessed, and We made him a sign
for the Children o f Israel.

17 A polytheist called ‘Abdullah ibn az-Zab‘ari asked the Prophet (*§§)


about the verse:
t(Verily, you [O disbelievers] and that which you worship besides Allah
are fuel for hell...)* (al-Anbiya’21: 98)
- and whether it applied only to Quraysh and their gods, or to other nations
too. When the Prophet ($)&) replied that it applied to all nations, the
polytheist said: Do you not say that ‘Eesa is a Prophet of Allah and you
venerate him and his mother, when you know that the Christians worship
them both, and the angels are also worshipped? If all of these will be in
the fire, we are happy to be with them, along with our gods! The Prophet
( t i | ) remained silent and Quraysh jeered and gloated, as they thought
that he had been defeated in argument. Then Allah revealed the words:
*(But those for whom We have decreed good will surely be kept far away
from it [the fire].)* (al-Anbiya'2l: 101)
- and these verses (43: 57-58), confirming that those who rejected the
worship directed to them would never enter the fire.

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43:60. If We so willed, We could [destroy you all] and make angels to


replace you on earth.
43:61. Verily he [‘Eesa] will be a sign o f the Hour, so have no doubt
about it, and follow me; this is a straight path.
43:62. Do not let the Shaytan turn you away [from the straight path];
verily he is to you an avowed enemy.
43:63. When ‘Eesa came with clear signs, he said: I have come to you
with wisdom, and to clarify to you some o f that concerning
which you differ. So fear Allah, and obey me.
43:64. Verily Allah is my Lord and your Lord, so worship Him. This
is a straight path.
43:65. But the sects differed among themselves [concerning ‘Eesa]. So
woe to the wrongdoers from the punishment o f a painful day!

^W hen the son o f M aryam was m entioned as an example]? that


is, when it was said that it is forbidden to worship him , and worship
o f him was deem ed equivalent to w orshipping the idols and rivals,
(•[your people [O Muhammad]]? who disbelieved in you
(•[laughed and jeered]? as they persisted in their opposition to you,
and they gloated and claim ed that they had defeated you in argument.
^an d said: A re our gods better, or he?]? - referring to ‘Eesa, as
worship o f all o f them was forbidden and the worship o f all o f them
was included in the warning. M oreover, the words:
([Verily, you [O disbelievers] and that w hich you w orship besides
A llah are fuel for hell; to it you will [surely] come.]? (al-Anbiya'21: 98)
- w ere also revealed.
T heir argum ent was as follows: it is well established and known
to us and to you, O M uham m ad ( ^ ) , that ‘Eesa is one o f the slaves
o f Allah who is close to Him and will have a good end, so why did
you prohibit equally the worship o f all o f them (that is, o f ‘Eesa and
o f the idols)? Were it not for the fact that your argum ent is false, you

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w ould not have fallen into this contradiction! So why did you say,
^V erily you [O disbelievers] and that w hich you w orship besides
Allah are fuel for hell; to it you will [surely] come)?? (21: 98) For this
wording - according to their claim - included both the idols and ‘Eesa;
is this not a contradiction, and is not a contradiction in argum ent an
indication that it is false?
This was the best argument they could come up with, which caused
them to gloat and rejoice, so they started jeering and laughing.
But in fact - praise be to A llah - it is one o f the w eakest and
falsest o f specious arguments. The fact that Allah forbade equally the
worship o f the M essiah and the w orship o f idols is because He alone
is deserving o f w orship, and no one else deserves to be worshipped,
no created being, no angel w ho is close to A llah, no Prophet who
was sent, or any other created entity. So w hat is so confusing about
forbidding the worship o f ‘Eesa and anyone else equally? The fact that
Jesus ( H O is favoured by Allah and is close to his Lord highlights
the difference betw een him and the idols. In fact he is as Allah ( 4 0
says: ^ H e was but a slave w hom We blessed)? w ith prophethood,
wisdom , know ledge and righteous deeds, «(and We m ade him a sign
for the C hildren o f Israel)? by w hich they would know the m ight o f
Allah ( 4 0 W ho brought him into being w ithout a father.
As for the verse:
«(Verily, you [O disbelievers] and that w hich you w orship besides
Allah are fuel for hell; to it you will [surely] come.)? (al-Anbiya ’21: 98)
- the response to it is as follows:
1- In the phrase *(Verily you [O disbelievers] and that which you
w orship besides Allah)?, the word ma (translated here as ^that
which)?) refers to that w hich is inanim ate and has no pow er
o f rational thinking, w hich does not include the M essiah and
others like him.

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2- It is addressed to the polytheists w ho lived in M akkah and its


environs, who only w orshipped idols and im ages; they did not
w orship the M essiah.
3- A fter this verse, Allah (4g) says:
^B ut those for whom We have decreed good will surely be kept
far aw ay from it.)» (al-Anbiya 21: 101)
U ndoubtedly ‘E esa and other P rophets and close friends o f
Allah are included in this verse.
Then Allah says: *flf We so w illed, We could [destroy you all] and
m ake angels to replace you on earthy that is, We could cause angels
to take your place on earth, and they w ould rem ain on earth until We
sent to them angels like them. As for you, O hum ans, you cannot bear
it if angels are sent to you, so by His m ercy tow ards you, A llah has
sent to you M essengers o f your own kind, so that you will be able to
learn from them.
^Verily he [‘Eesa] will be a sign o f the Hour]? that is, verily ‘Eesa
( 0 I ) will be an indication o f the approach o f the Hour, and that the
O ne W ho brought him into being from a m other w ithout a father
is able to resurrect the dead from their graves; or ‘Eesa ( 0 k ) will
descend at the end o f tim e and will be one o f the portents o f the Hour.
(fso have no doubt about it)£ that is, do not doubt the com ing o f
the Hour, for doubt thereof constitutes disbelief
({and follow m e^ by com plying with w hat I enjoin upon you, and
avoiding what I forbid to you
([this is a straight path)j that leads to Allah O s).
({Do not let the Shaytan turn you away [from the straight path]^
and from w hat Allah enjoins upon you, for verily the Shaytan ^ is to
you an avow ed enem y^ who is keen to m islead you and is doing his
utm ost to achieve that.
(•[When ‘Eesa came with clear signs]5 confirm ing his prophethood
and the soundness o f that which he brought to them , such as raising
the dead, healing those bom blind and lepers, and other signs,

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^h e said)? to the C hildren o f Israel:


^1 have com e to you w ith w isdom )? n am ely p ro p h eth o o d and
know ledge o f what to do and how it should be done
^and to clarify to you som e o f that concerning w hich you differ)? that
is, to explain to you what is correct and to give you answ ers, so as to
dispel confusion from you.
He cam e to com plete the law o f M oosa ( H O and the rulings o f
the Torah, and to give som e concessions to m ake things easier, which
dictated that they should follow him and accept w hat he brought to
them.
^S o fear A llah, and obey me)? that is, w orship Allah alone, with
no partner or associate, obey His com m ands, heed His prohibitions,
and believe in me and what I say, «fand obey me)?.
^Verily Allah is my Lord and your Lord, so w orship Him. This is
a straight path)? which involves affirm ation o f the oneness o f divine
L ordship, for A llah is the Lord W ho takes care o f H is creation by
bestow ing all kinds o f blessings, both visible and hidden. It also
affirm s that worship should be devoted to Allah alone, as it enjoins
w orship o f Him alone, w ith no partner or associate. Here ‘Eesa ( H O
stated that he w as one o f the slaves o f A llah, and w as not as the
C hristians describe him , the “ son o f G od” or the “third o f th ree”
(trinity), and he stated that the things m entioned com prise the straight
path that leads to Allah and to His paradise.
W hen ‘Eesa ( H O cam e to them w ith this m essage, ^ th e sects
differed am ong them selves^, each saying som ething false concerning
him and rejecting the message he brought, except those o f the believers
whom A llah guided, who testified that he was a M essenger o f Allah
and w ho believed in everything that he brought, and said that he was
the slave and M essenger o f Allah.
^ S o w oe to the w rongdoers from the punishm ent o f a painful
day!)? that is, how great the sorrow o f the w rongdoers will be, and
how great their loss, on that day!

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104 | Tafseeras-Sa‘di
Juz'25

O ________________ 0

(v r--u ijj-)
43:66. What are they waiting for, but for the Hour to come upon them
suddenly when they least expect it?
43:67. Close friends, on that day, will be enemies to one another, except
the righteous.
43:68. [It will be said to them:] O My slaves, you will have no fear
this day, nor will you grieve,
43:69. [you] who believed in Our revelations and submitted [to Us, in
Islam],
43:70. Enter the garden, you and your spouses, rejoicing.
43:71. Platters o f gold and cups will be passed around among them;
[there will be] therein all that souls may desire and all that eyes
may delight in, and you will abide therein forever.
43:72. This is paradise, which you are made to inherit as a reward for
your deeds.
43:73. In it there is abundant fruit for you to eat.

Here Allah says: w hat are the disbelievers w aiting for? Are they
expecting anything <fbut for the H our to com e upon them suddenly
when they least expect it?]j That is, w hen it com es, do not ask about

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Soorat az-Zukhruf (66-73) | 105

the situation o f those who disbelieved in it and ridiculed the one who
brought the m essage about it.
^C lose friends, on that d ay ^ that is, the Day o f Resurrection, who
had bonded on the basis o f disbelief and disobedience tow ards Allah
([will be enem ies to one another)? because their close friendship and
love in this w orld w ere not for the sake o f Allah, therefore on the Day
o f R esurrection their friendship will turn into enm ity
^ ex c ep t the righteous)? w ho avoided polytheism and sins; their
friendship will persist and continue, as the one for W hose sake they
loved one another is eternal.
Then Allah mentions the reward o f the righteous; He will call them
on the Day o f R esurrection w ith that w hich will bring jo y to their
hearts and take away all ills and evils. He will say:
«(0 M y slaves, you will have no fear this day, nor will you grieve)?
that is, you w ill have no fear w ith regard to w hat you expect to
happen in the future, and you will feel no g rief for w hat happened in
the past. Once it is established that there is no fear or distress with
regard to the future or the past, then w hat one loves and seeks is
confirmed.
^[you] who believed in O ur revelations and subm itted [to Us, in
Islam ])? that is, they are described as believing in the revelations o f
Allah, which includes affirm ing them by m eans o f that w ithout which
they cannot be affirm ed, nam ely know ledge o f their m eanings and
acting upon w hat they say.
^and subm itted [to Us, in Islam ])? that is, they subm itted to A llah in
all their affairs, thus they com bined righteous deeds both outw ard
and inward.
^E nter the garden)? which is the eternal abode
^you and your spouses)? who did the same as you. The word translated
here as ([spouses)? includes all com panions, nam ely spouses, children,
friends and so on.

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^rejoicing]* that is, blessed and honoured, for favours will com e to
you from your Lord, good things, happiness, jo y and delights such
as cannot be described.
^P latters o f gold and cups will be passed around am ong them)?
that is, im m ortal youths will go around am ong them , serving them
food and drink in the finest vessels, nam ely platters o f gold and cups
o f silver, sm oother than glass.
«f[there will be] therein]* that is, in paradise
^all that souls m ay desire and all that eyes m ay delight in]*. This is
a com prehensive phrase w hich includes all kinds o f delights, joys,
com fort and happiness; everything that souls m ay desire o f food,
drink, clothing and spouses; and all that eyes m ay delight in o f
beautiful scenes, abundant trees, a life o f ease and luxury, and adorned
buildings. All o f that is available there, prepared for its people, in the
m ost perfect manner, as Allah 0 g ) says elsewhere:
^T here they will have fruit and all that they ask for.]* (Yd Seen 36. 57)
^and you will abide therein forever^ this is the perfection o f the
bliss o f the people o f paradise, which is eternal life therein, including
the continuity and increase o f its blessings, which will never cease.
^T his is paradise]* that is described in the m ost perfect terms;
«fwhich you are m ade to inherit as a rew ard for your deeds]* that
is, Allah will cause you to inherit it because o f your deeds. By His
grace, He has m ade it a recom pense for those deeds and has filled it
with abundant mercy.
^In it there is abundant fruit]* - this is like the verse in w hich
Allah (4s) says:
d in them are two kinds o f every fruit.]* (ar-Rahman 55. 52)
^for you to eat]* that is, you m ay eat w hatever you choose o f those
delicious fruits.
Having m entioned the delights o f paradise, Allah follows that with
m ention o f the punishm ent o f hell, as He says:

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Soorat az-Zukhruf 0 4 - 78) | 107

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43:74. Verily the evildoers will abide forever in the torment o f hell.
43:75. It will not be lightened for them, and they will be plunged into
utter despair therein.
43:76. We will not have wronged them; rather they will have wronged
themselves.
43:77. They will call out [to the keeper o f hell]: O Malik, let your Lord
put an end to us! He will say: Verily you will remain [in the
same plight forever],
43:78. Verily We brought you the truth, but most o f you were averse
to the truth.

([Verily the evildoers]? who did evil by disbelieving and rejecting


the truth
^ w ill abide forev er in the to rm en t o f h e ll^ that is, they w ill be
im m ersed in it, encom passed by the torm ent on all sides, and they
will never em erge from it.
([It w ill not be lightened for them)? even for a b rie f m om ent,
w hether by stopping it altogether or alleviating the punishm ent
([and they will be plunged into utter despair therein)? that is, they will
give up all hope o f anything good and will have no hope o f relief.
They will call out to their Lord, saying:
^O u r Lord, deliver us from this. Then if we return [to evil], we will
indeed be wrongdoers. A llah will say: Away w ith you! Be hum iliated
therein and do not speak to Me.)? (al-Mu’minoon 23:107-108)

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J u z '25

This severe punishm ent will be because o f w hat their hands sent
forth and because they w ronged them selves; A llah will not w rong
them and will not punish them for no sin or m isdem eanour on their
part.
^T hey will call o u t^ w hen they are in hell, hoping to get some
relief: M alik, let your Lord put an end to us!^ That is, let Him
cause us to die so that we m ay find som e relief, for we are in a state
o f extrem e distress and severe punishm ent that we have no patience
to bear. But M alik, the keeper o f hell, will say to them , w hen they ask
him to pray to Allah to put an end to them: ^Verily you will rem ain
[in the same plight forever] |j that is, you will abide therein forever
and never em erge from it. So they will not get w hat they seek; rather
the response will be a denial o f their request w hich will add to their
distress. Then Allah will rebuke them for w hat they did, saying:
^Verily We brought you the truth)? w hich required you to follow
it, and if you had follow ed it, you w ould have trium phed and been
blessed,
eibut m ost o f you w ere averse to the truth)} hence you w ere doom ed
in such a way that you will never attain any bliss thereafter.

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43:79. Or have they [the disbelievers] devised a plan? Verily We too


have devised a plan.
43:80. Or do they think that We do not hear what they conceal [of
thoughts] and what they talk about in secret? Indeed [We do], and
Our messengers [angels] are with them, recording everything.

Here Allah says: or have the disbelievers who stubbornly reject


the truth devised a plan? In other words have they com e up with this

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Soorat az-Zukhruf (81-83) | 109

schem e and plotted against the truth and the one w ho brought the
truth, so as to refute it on the basis o f w hat they present o f false and
m isleading argum ents?
^V erily We too have devised a plan}? that is, We too are planning
som ething and taking m easures that are superior to their plan and will
underm ine their schem es and render them ineffective. This refers to
w hat A llah has m ade available o f m easures and evidence to support
the truth and defeat falsehood, as He says elsew here:
^Nay, rather We hurl the truth against falsehood, and it crushes it... ]»
(al-Anbiya 21: 18)
^ O r do they think^ in their ignorance and w rongdoing
^that We do not hear what they conceal [o f thoughts] that they do
not speak about; rather they conceal them in their hearts
*fand w hat they talk about in secret]* that is, their private discussions
w hen they talk to one another in low voices, and that is w hy they
dare to com m it sins, thinking that there will be no consequences and
no requital for w hat they concealed o f it?
But Allah responded to them by saying: ^Indeed [We do])» that is,
We know their concealed thoughts and w hat they talk about in secret
<$and O ur messengers!* nam ely the noble angels
«fare with them, recording everything]* that they do, and the record
is kept to be used ag ainst them w hen they com e on the D ay o f
Resurrection; they will find the record o f what they did present, and
your Lord will not w rong anyone.

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43:81. Say: If the Most Gracious had a son, 1 would have been the first
one to worship [him].
43:82. Glory be to the Lord o f the heavens and the earth, Lord o f the
Throne, [and exalted be He] far above what they ascribe [to
Him],
43:83. So leave them to indulge in their falsehood and idle worldly
pursuits until they encounter that day o f theirs which they are
promised.

That is, say, O noble M essenger, to those w ho ascribe a son to


A llah, w hen He is the O ne, the U nique, the Eternal, W ho has not
taken a spouse or a son, and there is none like unto Him:
«[Say: If the M ost G racious had a son, I w ould have been the first one
to w orship [him ]^ nam ely that son, because he w ould be a part o f
his father, and I am the first o f hum ankind to subm it to that which is
beloved to A llah. But I am the first to reject this notion and the most
em phatic in denying it. Thus it is known that it is false.
This is a strong argument, for those who know how the Messengers
really are. W hen it is know n that they are the m ost perfect o f
hum ankind, and that they are the first to accept and adhere to and
perfect ev erything that is good, and they are the first to reject,
denounce and keep aw ay from everything that is evil, therefore if
the M ost G racious had a son, and it was true, then M uham m ad ibn
‘A bdullah ( « ||) , the best o f the M essengers, w ould have been the
first one to w orship him and the polytheists w ould not have done
that before him.
It m ay be that w hat the verse m eans is: if the M ost G racious had
a son, I would be the first to worship A llah, and part o f worshipping
Allah is to affirm that w hich He affirm ed, and to deny that which He
denied. This is a verbal act o f w orship in term s o f beliefs, that w ould
mean, if it were really true, that I w ould be the first one to confirm it.

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Thus it is know n that the claim o f the polytheists is false and corrupt,
both in term s o f rational thinking and in term s o f religious texts.
^G lory be to the Lord o f the heavens and the earth, Lord o f the
Throne, [and exalted be He] far above w hat they ascribe [to Him])?
o f having a partner, supporter, helper, child or other things that the
polytheists ascribe to Him.
^ S o leave them to indulge in their falsehood and idle w orldly
pursuits)? that is, let them indulge in falsehood and play w ith that
w hich leads to no results, for the know ledge they acquire is harmful
and not beneficial, for they are seeking kinds o f know ledge that
w ould help them to refute the truth and that w hich w as brought by
the M essengers, and their deeds are foolish play that do not lead to
purification o f souls or yield know ledge. H ence He w arned them
o f som e o f w hat lies ahead o f them on the Day o f R esurrection,
as He says: «[until they encounter that day o f theirs which they are
prom ised^, for they will com e to know w hat they have gained from
their efforts o f eternal doom and everlasting punishm ent.

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43:84. It is He [Allah] Who is God in heaven and God on earth, and


He is the Most Wise, All-Knowing.
43:85. Blessed be He to Whom belongs the dominion o f the heavens and
the earth, and all that is between them. He alone has knowledge
o f the Hour, and to Him you will be brought back.

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43:86. Those on whom they call besides Allah have no power o f


intercession, except those who bear witness to the truth on the
basis o f knowledge.
43:87. If you ask them who created them, they will surely say: Allah.
Then how could they have gone so far astray?
43:88. [The Prophet] said: O my Lord, verily these are people who do
not believe.
43:89. But bear with them and say: Peace. They will come to know
[the consequences o f their actions].

Here Allah Be) tells us that He alone is deserving o f worship in


the heavens and on earth. Therefore all the inhabitants o f the heavens,
and the believers am ong the inhabitants o f the earth, worship Him,
venerate Him, subm it to His m ajesty and are in need o f Him, because
o f His perfect attributes.
«[The seven heavens and the earth, and all those w ho are therein,
glorify Him. T here is not a thing that does not glorify Him w ith
p ra ise ... P (al-Isra' 17: 44)
^To Allah prostrate all those w ho are in the heavens and on earth,
willingly or unw illingly...]* (ar-Ra'd 13: 15)
A llah (4c) is the only O ne W ho is deserving o f devotion and
w orship, to W hom all creatures turn, willingly or unwillingly. This
is like w hat Allah Be) says here:
«{It is He [Allah] W ho is G od in heaven and God on earthy that is,
He is w orshipped and loved in both realm s; but His essence is above
His Throne, distinct from His creation. He is O ne in His majesty,
glorious in His perfection.
(•[and He is the M ost W ise^ W ho created everything on the basis o f
w isdom , and based His laws on wisdom. He has not created anything
but for a wise reason, and He has not prescribed any law but for a wise
reason. His divine will and sh ar‘i rulings are all based on w isdom

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Soorat az-Zukhruf (84-89) | 113

^ A ll-K n o w in g ^ - H e know s all things; He know s w hat is said


privately and that w hich is yet m ore hidden (o f unspoken thoughts)
(20: 7)\ not an atom ’s w eight escapes Him in either the upper or low er
realm , and nothing sm aller or greater than that.
^Blessed be He to W hom belongs the dom inion o f the heavens and
the earth, and all that is betw een them ^ that is, exalted and glorified
be He, for His blessings are abundant, His attributes are sublim e, and
His dom inion is great. His dom inion is so great that it encom passes
the heavens and the earth, and all that is betw een them ; and His
know ledge is so vast that He know s all things; He even knows m any
unseen m atters o f which no one in creation is aw are, no Prophet w ho
w as sent and no angel who is close to Him. Hence He says:
^H e alone has know ledge o f the Hour)? - no one know s when the
Hour will com e except He.
Part o f His perfect and all-inclusive dom inion is th at He is in
control o f the affairs o f this w orld and the hereafter, hence He says:
^and to Him you will be brought back)? that is, in the hereafter, then
He will ju dge betw een you according to His ju st rulings.
A nother aspect o f His perfect dom inion is that no one o f His
creation has any control over anything at all, and no one will com e
forth to intercede with Him except by His leave.
^ T h o se on w hom they call besid es A llah have no p o w e r o f
intercession)? that is, everyone w ho is called upon besides A llah,
w hether they are Prophets or angels or anyone else, has no pow er to
intercede, and they will not intercede except by A llah ’s leave, and
they will not intercede except for those w ith w hom He is pleased.
Hence He says:
^except those who bear witness to the truth on the basis o f knowledge)}
that is, they bear w itness verbally and in their hearts, know ingly.
It is stipulated that the testim ony should be in favour o f the truth,
w hich is testifying to the oneness o f A llah and to the prophethood

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114 I Tafseer as-Sa 'di J u z ’25

and m essage o f His M essengers, and the truth o f w hat they brought
o f m ajor and m inor m atters o f religion, basic beliefs, and laws and
regulations. These are the ones w ho will benefit from the intercession
o f the intercessors, and these are the ones who will be saved from the
punishm ent o f A llah and will attain His reward.
Then Allah says: ^ I f you ask them who created them , they will
surely say: Allah}* that is, if you ask the polytheists about the oneness
o f divine Lordship, and w ho is the Creator, they will affirm that it is
Allah alone, with no partner or associate.
^Then how could they have gone so far astray?)* That is, how could
they have been diverted from w orship o f A llah alone and focusing
their devotion on H im alone? T heir affirm ation o f the oneness o f
divine Lordship requires them to affirm the oneness o f divinity. This
is one o f the greatest indications o f the falseness o f polytheism.
^[T h e Prophet] said: O m y Lord, verily these are people who
do not believe}* that is, the M essenger («|§) said this, com plaining
to his Lord about the rejection o f his people, expressing his sorrow
thereat, and feeling sad because o f their lack o f faith. But A llah 0 g )
is well aw are o f this situation and will deal w ith them by sending the
punishm ent upon them.
But Allah (-5s) is forbearing and gives respite to people, delaying
the punishm ent so that they m ay repent and turn back to Him. Hence
He says: ^B ut bear with them and say: Peace^ that is, put up with
their offence in w ord and deed, and forgive them ; you should not
show them anything but the attitude o f peace, which is the attitude
o f people o f intelligence and understanding towards the ignorant, as
Allah (4g) says o f His righteous slaves:
ff...when the ignorant address them...}* (al-Furqan 25: 63)
in accordance with their ignorance:
({...they say w ords o f peace. }* (al-Furqan 25: 63)

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Soorat az-Zukhraf (84-89) | 115

The Prophet (5|§) obeyed the com m and o f his Lord and reacted
with forgiveness and patience to what his people said and did to offend
him; he did not respond to it except by show ing them kindness and
speaking nicely to them. Blessings and peace o f Allah be upon the one
upon whom Allah bestow ed this noble attitude, m ade him superior to
the inhabitants o f earth and heaven, and raised him to a status higher
than that o f the stars.
^T hey will com e to know [the consequences o f their actions]^ that
is, the consequences o f their sins and evil deeds.

This is the end of the commentary on Soorat az-Zukhruf.


All praise and thanks are for Allah, and may the blessings and
peace of Allah be upon Prophet Muhammad ( ^ ) , his family, and
his Companions abundantly until the Day o f Judgement.

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44.
Soorat ad-Dukhan
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In the name o f Allah,


the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful

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( ' 1- \ :OUjJl;j ^ ) <^
44:1. Ha’. Meem.
44:2. By the clear Book,

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Soorat ad-Dukhan (1-16) | 117

44:3. verily We sent it down during a blessed night, for We were to


give warning.
44:4. On that night, all matters are decided18 on the basis o f wisdom,
44:5. by Our command. Verily, We were to send Messengers
44:6. as a mercy from your Lord. Verily He is the All-Hearing, All-
Knowing,
44:7. Lord o f the heavens and the earth and all that is between them,
if you would but be convinced!
44:8. There is no god but He - He gives life and causes death - your
Lord, and the Lord o f your forefathers.
44:9. Rather they are steeped in doubt and mockery.
44:10. So watch [O Muhammad] for the day when the sky will bring
forth obvious smoke
44:11. that will envelop the people. [They will say:] This is a painful
punishment!
44:12. Our Lord, remove the punishm ent from us; we will surely
believe!
44:13. How is it that now they pay heed, when a M essenger who
explained things clearly came to them before,
44:14. then they turned away from him and said: [He is] a madman,
taught by others?
44:15. We will indeed remove the punishment for a little while, but
you will surely go back [to disbelief].
44:16. On the day when We seize [them] with a mighty onslaught, We
will surely exact retribution.

^B y the clear Book)) this is an oath sworn by the Q ur’an concerning


the Q u r’an. Allah swears by the clear Book that explains everything
that needs to be explained, stating that He sent it down

18 This refers to Laylat al-Qadr, when Allah decrees matters for His slaves
regarding their provision, lifespan and so on, for the coming year.

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118 | Tafseer as-Sa ‘di J u z '25

^during a blessed night}* that is, one in w hich there was much good
and barakah (blessing), nam ely Laylat al-Qadr, which is better than
a thousand m onths. Thus He sent down the best o f words on the best
o f nights and days, to the best o f people, in the language o f the noble
Arabs, to warn thereby people who w ere enveloped in ignorance and
overcom e w ith w retchedness, so that they m ight find enlightenm ent
and be guided by it, and follow it, thus attaining a great deal o f good
in this world and in the hereafter. Hence Allah says: ^fo r We were
to give warning}*.
«(On that night}* nam ely the blessed night on which the Q u r’an
was revealed
^all m atters are decided on the basis o f w isdom ^ that is, all m atters
are distinguished and clarified, and every issue o f the divine decree
and religious decree is recorded as Allah decides.
This recording and clarification that take place on Laylat al-Q adr
is one exam ple o f the w riting that will take place and be clarified,
and it will be identical to w hat is w ritten in al-Law h al-M ahfoodh, in
which Allah has decreed the affairs o f all creatures and their lifespan,
provision, deeds and circum stances.
M oreover, A llah has appointed angels to w rite dow n w hat will
happen to a person when he is in his m o ther’s wom b, then, after he
com es to this w orld, He appoints noble scribes to w rite dow n and
record his deeds, then on Laylat al-Q adr He decrees what is to happen
for the com ing year.
All this is part o f A llah ’s perfect know ledge, w isdom and care
for His creation.
^by O ur com m and^ that is, this wise com m and is som ething that
com es from Us
^Verily, We w ere to send M essengers^ and send dow n the Books,
and the M essengers were to convey the com m ands o f the Sender and
tell o f His decrees

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Soorat ad-Dukhan (1-16) | 119

^as a m ercy from your L ord^ that is, the sending o f the M essengers
and the revelation o f the Books, the best o f w hich is the Q u r’an, is
a m ercy from the Lord o f hum ankind to hum ankind. A llah has not
bestow ed any greater m ercy upon His slaves than guiding them by
m eans o f the Books and M essengers. All good that they attain in this
w orld and the hereafter is as a result o f that and because o f it.
^V erily He is the A ll-H earing, A ll-K now ing)) that is, He hears
all voices and knows all m atters, visible and hidden. He knew that
people needed His M essengers and Books, so He had m ercy on them
and bestow ed that and blessed them with it. To Him be all praise.
(•(Lord o f the heavens and the earth and all that is betw een them))
that is, the C reator and C ontroller o f all o f that; He controls it as He
wills.
3fif you w ould but be convinced)) that is, and know that for certain.
You should know that the L ord o f all creatures is their true G od,
hence He says:
^T here is no god but He)* that is, there is none w orthy o f w orship
except Him.
^H e gives life and causes death)) that is, He alone has control over
life and death, and He will gather you after your death and requite
you for your deeds; if they are good then the outcom e w ill be good,
and if they are bad then the outcom e will be bad.
^your Lord, and the Lord o f your forefathers)) that is, Lord o f the first
and the last, W ho cares for them and bestow s blessings upon them,
and protects them from harm.
H aving affirm ed His Lordship and divinity in such a w ay as to
establish com plete certainty and w ard o ff doubt, A llah now tells us
that those who disbelieve despite all this clear evidence ^are steeped
in doubt and m o ck ery ^ that is, they are im m ersed in doubt and
confusion, heedless about the purpose for w hich they w ere created.
They have been distracted by focusing on falsehood that will only
bring them harm.

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^ S o w atch [O M uhammad])* that is, expect the punishm ent to


befall them , for it is at hand and its tim e has come.
«(for the day when the sky will bring forth obvious sm oke that will
envelop the people)* that is, that sm oke will surround them.
^[T hey will say:] This is a painful punishment!)*
The com m entators differed as to w hat is m eant by this sm oke.
It w as suggested that it is the sm oke that will envelop the people
when the fire com es near the evildoers on the Day o f Resurrection,
and that here Allah is w arning them o f the punishm ent o f the Day o f
Resurrection, and instructing His Prophet (*|§) to w atch and w ait for
that day to com e upon them.
T his interpretation is supported by the fact that this is the way
o f the Q u r’an in w arning the disbelievers and giving them respite,
alerting them to that day and its punishm ents, and consoling the
M essenger ($& ) and the believers by telling them to w ait and see
w hat will happen to those who harm them. It is also supported by
the fact that Allah says in this passage (44: 13): «(How is it that now
they pay heed, when a M essenger who explained things clearly came
to them before)*. This will be said on the Day o f Resurrection to the
disbelievers, when they ask to go back to this w orld and they will be
told that the time for going back is now over.
It was also suggested that w hat is m eant by the sm oke is w hat
happened to the disbelievers o f Q uraysh w hen they refused to believe
and were too arrogant to accept the proof. So the Prophet (s|§ ) prayed
against them , saying:
« 0 Allah! Help me against them by afflicting them with seven years
o f fam ine sim ilar to the seven years o f Yoosuf.» (Bukhari)
Therefore Allah sent against them a great famine, until they began
to eat dead anim als and bones, and they began to see the area between
heaven and earth as if it w ere sm oke, but it was not sm oke; that was
the effect o f intense starvation.

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Soorat ad-Dukhan (1-16) | 121

B ased on this interpretation, the w ords ^ th e day w hen the sky


will bring forth obvious sm oke^ refer to what they thought they were
seeing, and it was not real smoke.
This situation continued until they asked the M essenger o f Allah
( 3 ||) for mercy, and requested him to call upon A llah for them and
ask Him to grant them relief. So he called upon his Lord, and Allah
granted them relief. A ccording to this interpretation, in verse 15 t(We
will indeed rem ove the punishm ent for a little w hile, but you will
surely go back [to disbelief]^, Allah is stating that He will divert it
from them , and w arning them that they will go back to arrogance and
disbelief. He foretold that this w ould happen, and it indeed happened;
and He foretold that He would punish them with a m ighty onslaught.
The com m entators said that that was the Battle o f Badr. This view
carries weight.
It is also possible that what is m entioned in the passage, ^So watch
[O M uham m ad] for the day w hen the sky will bring forth obvious
sm oke that will envelop the people. [They will say:] This is a painful
punishm ent! O ur Lord, rem ove the punishm en t from us; w e will
surely believe! H ow is it that now they pay heed, w hen a M essenger
w ho explained things clearly cam e to them before, then they turned
aw ay from him and said: [He is] a m adm an, taught by others?)* (44:
10-14), will all happen on the Day o f Resurrection, and that the words,
*(We will indeed rem ove the punishm ent for a little while, but you
will surely go back [to disbelief]. On the day when We seize [them]
with a m ighty onslaught, We will surely exact retribution.)) (44:15-16)
refer to what happened to Quraysh (on the day o f Badr), as m entioned
above.
T hese verses m ay also include both m eanings, because there
is nothing in the w ording to rule that out; rather they are perfectly
applicable to both, and this is w hat appears m ost likely to be correct
in m y view. And A llah knows best.

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44:17. Indeed We tested the people o f Pharaoh before them, when a


noble Messenger came to them, [saying]:
44:18. Hand over to me the slaves o f Allah. Verily I am a trustworthy
Messenger to you.
44:19. Do not be arrogant towards Allah, for 1 come to you with clear
authority.
44:20. Verily 1 seek refuge with my Lord and your Lord lest you kill me.
44:21. If you do not believe me, then let me be.

H aving m entioned the rejection o f those w ho disb elieved in


the M essenger M uham m ad ( 3 l|) , A llah (-fe) states that they had a
precedent am ong the earlier disbelievers, and He m entions their story
with M oosa and how A llah punished them , in order to deter these
disbelievers (Q uraysh) from w hat they w ere doing:
^Indeed We tested the people o f Pharaoh before them ^ that is, We
tested them by sending to them O ur M essenger M oosa ibn ‘Imran,
the noble M essenger who had a sublim e character and attitude that
did not exist in others.
He said to them: ^H and over to me the slaves o f Allah]? that is, he
said to Pharaoh and his chiefs: hand over to me the slaves o f Allah,
m eaning the Israelites. In other words: let them go and release them
from torm ent and stop m istreating them , for they are my people and
the best o f nations o f their tim e. B ut you have w ronged them and
enslaved them unjustifiably. So let them be free to worship their Lord.

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Soorat ad-Dukhan (22-29) | 123

Verily I am a trustw orthy M essenger to you)) that is, a M essenger


from the Lord o f the w orlds, faithful to the purpose for w hich He has
sent me; I do not w ithhold anything o f the m essage from you, and
I do not add anything to it or take anything aw ay from it, and this
requires you to subm it com pletely to Him.
^D o not be arrogant tow ards Allah)) by refusing to w orship Him
or being high-handed towards the slaves o f Allah
«ffor I com e to you with clear authority)) that is, with clear evidence.
This refers to what he brought o f dazzling miracles and overwhelm ing
signs. But they rejected him and w ere about to kill him , so he sought
refuge with Allah from their evil, saying: ^Verily I seek refuge with
my Lord and your Lord lest you kill me)) in the w orst manner, which
is by stoning to death.
^ I f you do not believe me, then let m e be)) that is, you have three
choices: either believe in me, w hich is w hat I w ant for you; or if that
does not happen, then let me be and do not be against me or for me,
ju st do not harm me.
But they did not choose either o f these tw o options; rather they
continued to stubbornly oppose Allah and fight His Prophet M oosa
and did not release his people, the Israelites, for him.

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44.22. Then he called upon his Lord, [saying]: Verily these are wicked
people.

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124 I Tafseer as-Sa ‘di Juz ‘25

44:23. [Allah said:] Travel by night with My slaves; you will surely
be pursued.
44:24. And leave the sea parted [behind you];19 for they are an army
destined to be drowned.
44:25. How many gardens and springs did they leave behind,
44:26. and cornfields and splendid mansions,
44:27. and a life o f ease in which they had taken such delight.
44:28. And so it was; and We caused other people to inherit such things.
44:29. Neither heaven nor earth wept for them, nor were they given
respite.

(•[Then he called upon his Lord, [saying]: Verily these are wicked
people]? that is, they have com m itted evil deeds, w hich requires
hastening the punishm ent.
Thus M oosa described their condition; this was an im plicit
supplication against them , by describing them as wicked, w hich is
m ore eloquent than praying against them explicitly. This is like the
verse which tells us that M oosa said o f himself:
([.. . 0 my Lord, I am in need o f w hatever good You m ay bestow upon
me.]? (al-Qasas 28: 24)
So Allah instructed him to leave at night with His slaves, and told
him that Pharaoh and his people w ould pursue him.
([And leave the sea parted [behind you]]? that is, leave it as it is.
This refers to the time when M oosa took the C hildren o f Israel away
by night, as Allah instructed him, then they w ere pursued by Pharaoh.
Allah instructed M oosa to strike the sea, so he struck it, and it turned

19 After crossing the path through the parted sea, Moosa wanted to strike it
again with his staff so that the waters would close. But Allah instructed
him to leave it alone so that Pharaoh and his troops would enter it, then
He would cause it to close on them and drown them. (an-Nasafi)

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Soorat ad-Dukhan (30-33) | 125

into twelve pathw ays, in betw een which the w ater becam e like huge
m ountains, and M oosa and his people follow ed those pathways.
W hen they emerged from the sea, Allah instructed him to leave the
sea parted - that is, to leave it as it was, so that Pharaoh and his troops
could pursue them , ^fo r they are an arm y destined to be drowned)?.
W hen all the people o f M oosa had com e out o f the sea, and the
people o f Pharaoh had entered it, A llah (tft) com m anded the sea to
close over them , so every single one o f them was drowned. They left
behind all that they had enjoyed o f this worldly life, and Allah caused
the C hildren o f Israel, who had been enslaved by them , to inherit it.
Hence He says (44: 25-28):
^H ow many gardens and springs did they leave behind, and cornfields
and splendid m ansions, and a life o f ease in w hich they had taken
such delight. A nd so it was; and We caused other people to inherit
such things)? nam ely the blessings mentioned. Elsewhere, Allah says:
^A nd so it was; and We caused the C hildren o f Israel to inherit such
things.)? (ash-Shu'ard’26: 59)
^ N eith er heaven nor earth w ept for them)? that is, w hen A llah
destroyed them and eradicated them, neither the heavens nor the earth
w ept for them. In other words, nobody grieved for them or felt sorry
for their loss. R ather everyone rejoiced at their destruction, even the
heavens and the earth, because they had not left behind any legacy
except som ething sham eful, w hich brought upon them the curse and
the hatred o f all the worlds.
«(nor w ere they given respite^ that is, there was no deferral o f their
punishm ent; rather it struck them instantly.

0 0

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44:30. Thus We delivered the Children o f Israel from the humiliating


punishment,
44:31. from Pharaoh. Indeed he was high-handed in the land and was
one who transgressed all bounds.
44:32. We chose them, knowingly, above all other nations [of that time],
44:33. and We showed them signs in which there was a clear test.

Then A llah 0 g ) rem inds the C hildren o f Israel o f His blessings,


as He says:
^T h u s We d elivered the C hildren o f Israel from the hum iliating
punishm ent)? th at they w ere suffering ^ fro m Pharaoh)? w hen he
slaughtered their sons and let their w om enfolk live.
^Indeed he w as high-handed in the land)? that is, he was arrogant
in the land, w ithout justification
^and was one who transgressed all bounds^, audaciously overstepping
and violating the limits set by Allah.
<fWe chose them)? that is, We selected them
^knowingly)? that is, We knew that they deserved that virtue
^above all other nations)? that is, over all other nations o f their own
tim e and those w ho cam e before them and after them , until Allah
brought the Um m ah o f M uham m ad ( j|§ ) , w ho surpassed all other
nations, and A llah m ade them the best nation that He had brought
forth for hum ankind, and He blessed them with virtues with which
He did not bless others.
«fand We show ed them)? nam ely the C hildren o f Israel
Sfsigns)? that is, dazzling signs and clear m iracles
«(in which there was a clear test)s that is, We tested them by bestowing
m uch good upon them and clear favours from Us to them , and proof
for them o f the soundness o f what their Prophet M oosa ( ^ ) brought
to them.

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44:34. Verily these people [Quraysh] say:


44:35. There is nothing but our first death, and we will not be
resurrected.
44:36. Then bring back our forefathers, if you are telling the truth!
44:37. Are they better [in power and strength], or the people o f Tubba‘20
and those who came before them? We destroyed them, for verily
they were evildoers.

Verily these people [Q uraysh]^ that is, these disbelievers who


think the resurrection is unlikely
^say : T here is nothing but o u r first death, and w e w ill not be
resurrected)? that is, there is only the life o f this world; there is no
resurrection, no paradise and no hell.
Then they said, showing audacity towards their Lord and trying to
outw it Him: ^T hen bring back our forefathers, if you are telling the
truth! ^ This was one o f the dem ands m ade by the extrem ely stubborn
ignorant people. W hat connection is there between the truthfulness o f
the M essenger (j | | ) and bringing their forefathers back to life? The
signs had already established the truthfulness o f w hat he had brought
to them , and these signs were m any and varied.
^A re they)? nam ely the people referred to here (Q uraysh) ^better
[in pow er and strength], or the people o f T ubba‘ and those w ho came
before them ? We destroyed them , for verily they w ere evildoers)?.
They are no better than them , for they have com m itted the sam e evil

20 Tubba1: a hereditary title of the kings of Yemen.

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128 | Tafseer as-Sa'di J u z ’25

deeds, so they should expect the same destruction as that which befell
their fellow evildoers.

44:38. We have not created the heavens and the earth, and all that is
between them, in vain.
44:39. We have not created them both except for a true purpose, but
most o f them do not know.
44:40. Verily the Day o f Judgem ent is the time appointed for all o f
them,
44:41. a day on which no friend [or relative] will avail another at all,
nor will they be helped,
44:42. except those to whom Allah shows mercy. Verily He is the
Almighty, the Most Merciful.

Here A llah tells us about the perfect nature o f H is m ight and


wisdom , and that He has not created the heavens and earth in vain or
for no purpose; He has only created them for a true purpose. In other
w ords, their very creation is based on truth and contains truth, for He
has created them to worship Him alone with no partner or associate,
and so that He m ight issue com m ands and prohibitions to them , and
rew ard them or punish them.
^but most o f them do not know}» therefore they do not reflect upon
the creation o f the heavens and the earth.

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Soorat ad-Dukhan (43-50) | 129

Verily the Day o f Judgement)? which is the Day o f Resurrection,


on w hich Allah w ill judge betw een the first and the last, and between
all those who differ
^is the time appointed for all o f them ^ that is, for all o f creation.
Allah will gather all o f them on that day, and He will bring them
and their deeds and requite them for those deeds. No friend or relative
will benefit from another, ^n o r will they be helped)? that is, nor will
they be protected from the punishm ent o f Allah (■’&), because no one
am ong creation has any control over anything whatsoever.
^ ex c ep t those to w hom A llah show s m ercy. Verily He is the
A lm ighty, the M ost M erciful)? for they are the ones w ho w ill be
helped, by the m ercy o f Allah, which they strove to attain and worked
hard in this w orld for that purpose.

44:43. Verily the tree o f Zaqqoom


44:44. will be the food o f the wicked.
44:45. Like dregs o f oil, it will boil in their bellies,
44:46. like the boiling o f scalding water.
44:47. [It will be said:] Seize him and drag him into the middle o f the
blazing fire,
44:48. then pour over his head the punishment o f scalding water.
44:49. Taste it, O you who were mighty and honourable!
44:50. This is what you used to doubt.

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H aving m en tio n ed the D ay o f R esurrectio n , and stated that


He will ju d g e betw een His slaves on that day, A llah now tells us
that they will be divided into tw o groups: one group in paradise
and the o ther in hell. The latter are the sinners w ho did deeds o f
disbelief and disobedience. *(Verily)? their food will be fjthe tree o f
Zaqqoom jj which is the w orst and m ost terrible o f trees; its food is
^L ike dregs o f oil)? or like stinking pus, with a foul stench and taste,
exceedingly hot. It will boil in their bellies ?flike the boiling o f scalding
water)?.
And it will be said to the one who is being punished: ^Taste it)?
that is, taste the painful punishm ent, ijO you who were m ighty and
honourable!)»as you thought you were mighty and would be protected
from the punishm ent o f Allah, and you thought you were dear to Allah
and no punishm ent w ould befall you. But today it will becom e clear
to you that you are hum iliated, insignificant and worthless.
«(This)? nam ely the great punishm ent ^is what you used to doubt)?,
but now it has becom e clear to you that it is certain and true.

44.51. Verily the righteous will be in a secure place,


44:52. amidst gardens and springs,

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Soorat ad-Dukhan (51-59) | 131

44:53. wearing green garments o f fine silk and heavy brocade, facing
one another.
44:54. So it will be, and We will marry them to fair companions with
big beautiful eyes.
44:55. There they will call for every kind o f fruit, secure from all ills.
44:56. They will not taste death therein, except the first death, and He
will protect them from the punishment o f the blazing fire,
44:57. by the grace o f your Lord. That is the supreme triumph.
44:58. We have made this [Qur’an] easy, in your own language, so that
they may pay heed.
44:59. So wait; verily they too are waiting.

This is the reward o f the righteous, who feared Allah and feared His
wrath and punishm ent by refraining from sin and by doing deeds o f
obedience. As they are not subject to divine wrath and punishment, it is
confirm ed that they will attain the pleasure o f Allah and the im m ense
reward, in shady places with m any trees and fruits, flow ing springs,
and rivers flowing at their feet in the gardens o f bliss.
T he gardens are described as containing all kinds o f delights,
perfect in all aspects and not tainted with any unpleasantness in any
way whatsoever.
Their garm ents will be o f green silk, fine silk and heavy brocade,
such as they desire.
^facing one another)? in their hearts and physically, in perfect comfort,
reassurance, love, good com panionship and the best etiquette.
^S o it will be)? that is, there will be perfect bliss and happiness,
^and We will marry them to fair com panions with big beautiful eyes)?
that is, beautiful wom en, w hose beauty is astounding and dazzling;
they will have huge and beautiful eyes.
f[There)? that is, in paradise

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132 | Tafseer as-Sa'di J u z ’25

^they will call for every kind o f fruity both that w hich has a nam e in
this world and that which has no equivalent in this world. They will
call for every kind and type o f fruit, which will be brought to them
immediately, with no effort
^secure from all ills|j that is, they will be safe from that com ing to
an end, and safe from harm, safe from anything that could spoil their
bliss, safe from being expelled from paradise, and safe from death.
Hence A llah says:
*[They will not taste death therein, except the first death^; there will
be no death there at all.
Thus they will attain everything they loved and wanted.
^and He will protect them from the punishm ent o f the blazing fire,
by the grace o f your Lord|J that is, attaining bliss and being protected
from the punishm ent will happen by the grace and kindness o f Allah
tow ards them , for it is He W ho enables them to do the righteous
deeds by m eans o f which they will attain goodness in the hereafter,
and He will also give them m ore than they could deserve by virtue
o f their deeds.
^T hat is the suprem e trium php and w hat trium ph could be greater
than attaining the pleasure o f Allah and His paradise, and being safe
from His punishm ent and wrath?
«(We have m ade this [Q ur’an] easy, in your own language^ that is,
We have m ade it easy in your language, which is the m ost eloquent
and m ost sublim e o f all languages, so its w ords and m eanings have
been m ade easy
^so that they may pay heed^ to that which will benefit them , and do
it, and to that w hich will harm them , and refrain from it.
*[So w ait^ that is, w ait for w hat your Lord has prom ised you o f
goodness and victory
^verily they too are w aiting^ for what will befall them o f punishment.
W hat a great difference there is betw een the two kinds o f waiting: the
M essenger o f Allah ( * ||) and his follow ers are waiting for goodness

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Soorat ad-Dukhan (51-59) | 133

in this w orld and the hereafter, w hilst their opposite num bers are
waiting for evil in this w orld and the hereafter.

This is the end of the commentary on Soorat ad-Dukhan.


All praise and thanks are for Allah, and may the blessings and
peace of Allah be upon Prophet Muhammad (J^g), his family, and
his Companions abundantly until the Day of Judgement.

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Soorat al-Jathiyah
( \l a k k i)

In the name o f Allah,


the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful

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45:1. Ha’. Meem.


45:2. The revelation o f the Book is from Allah, the Almighty, the
Most Wise.
45:3. Verily in the heavens and the earth there are indeed signs for
the believers;

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Soorat al-Jathiyah (1-U) | 135

45:4. and in your own creation, and [in that of) the creatures He
scatters [throughout the earth], there are signs for people who
are certain in faith.
45:5. And the alternation o f night and day, the provision [rain] which
Allah sends down from the skies and gives life thereby to the
earth after its death, and the changing o f the winds, are signs
for people o f understanding.
45:6. These are the signs o f Allah, which We recount to you in truth.
Then in what message, after Allah’s signs, will they believe?
45:7. Woe to every evil liar,
45:8. who hears the signs [and revelations] o f Allah being recounted
to him, yet he persists in his arrogance, as if he did not hear
them. So give him the tidings o f a painful punishment.
45:9. When he comes to know anything o f Our signs [and revelations],
he makes a mockery o f them. For such there will be a humiliating
punishment.
45:10. Ahead o f them is hell; neither their gains nor those whom they
take as protectors other than Allah will avail them anything, and
theirs will be a grievous punishment.
45:11. This [Qur’an] is true guidance, and for those who deny the signs
o f their Lord, there will be a punishment o f painful suffering.

Here A llah issues an im plicit com m and to venerate the Q u r’an


and pay attention to it, for it is revelation from A llah, W ho is the
only O ne W ho is deserving o f devotion and w orship, because o f
w hat He possesses o f perfect attributes, for He is the only B estow er
o f blessings, the only One W ho possesses perfect pow er and wisdom.
Then He supports that by m ention o f signs in the universe and in their
own selves, such as the creation o f the heavens and the earth, w hat
He has scattered in them o f creatures, w hat He has placed in them o f
benefits, and w hat Allah sends dow n o f w ater by m eans o f w hich He
gives life to the land and the people.

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136 I Tafseer as-Sa'di Juz '25

All o f these are clear signs and proofs o f the truthfulness o f this
m ighty Q u r’an and the soundness o f w hat it contains o f w isdom
and rulings. They are also indicative o f w hat A llah (3s) possesses
o f perfection, and o f the resurrection. T hen A llah divides people
into tw o categories, according to w hether or not they benefit from
His signs:
The first category learns from them, reflects upon them and benefits
from them , thus rising in status. They are the ones w ho believe in
Allah, His angels, His Books, His M essengers and the Last Day, with
perfect faith that reaches the level o f certainty. Thus they increase in
m ature thinking and knowledge.
The other category hears the signs and revelations o f Allah being
recounted in such a way that proof is established against them, but then
they turn aw ay from them in arrogance, as if they did not hear them,
because they did not cleanse and purify their hearts; moreover, because
o f their arrogance towards them , they increased in transgression.
Such people, if they do com e to know anything o f the signs and
revelations o f Allah, m ake a m ockery o f them . A llah (3s) w arns such
people o f doom and says: «(Woe to every evil liar)? that is, everyone
who is untruthful in his speech and sinful in his deeds.
A llah tells us that such people w ill have a painful punishm ent,
and that A head o f them is hell]>, w hich is sufficient as a severe
punishm ent, and that ^neither their gains]? in term s o f w ealth ^nor
those w hom they take as protectors other than Allah)?, seeking their
help, ^w ill avail them anything]?, for they will abandon them at the
time when they will need them most.
Having highlighted His Q ur’anic revelations and visible signs, and
stated that people fall into two categories in term s o f their response
to them , Allah now tells us that the Q u r’an, w hich invites people to
these sublime aims and goals, is guidance, as He says: ^T his [Q ur’an]
is true guidance^. This is a general description o f the entire Q u r’an,

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for it guides people to know ledge o f A llah by describing His sacred


attributes and praisew orthy deeds; it guides them to know ledge
o f His M essengers, close friends and enem ies, by describing their
characteristics; it guides people to righteous deeds and promotes them;
it describes evil deeds and forbids them ; it explains the requital for
deeds, describing requital both in this w orld and the hereafter. Those
who are guided follow its guidance, and thus they will trium ph and
attain bliss.
<Sfand for those w ho deny the signs o f their Lord]*, w hich are
definitive and clear, and no one rejects them except one w ho has
gone too far in w rongdoing and transgressed far beyond all bounds
^there will be a punishm ent o f painful suffering^.

45:12. It is Allah Who has made the sea to be o f service to you, so that
the ships may sail on it by His command, and so that you may
seek His bounty and so that you may give thanks.
45:13. He has made to be o f service to you all that is in the heavens
and all that is on earth; all is from Him. Verily in that there are
signs for people who reflect.

Here Allah (3s) tells us o f His favours and kindness towards His
slaves, by m aking the sea to be o f service to them so that ships and
boats m ay sail on it by His com m and
^and so that you m ay seek His bounty]* by pursuing all kinds o f trade
and livelihood

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^ an d so that you m ay give th an k s^ to A llah (3s), for if you give


thanks to Him, He will increase His blessings and will reward you
im m ensely for your gratitude.
^H e has m ade to be o f service to you all that is in the heavens and
all that is on earth; all is from Him)? that is, by His grace and kindness.
This includes the heavenly bodies and the earth, and all that Allah
has placed in them , such as the sun, m oon, stars and other heavenly
bodies; all kinds o f anim als, trees and fruits; all types o f m etals and
m inerals; and other things that are prepared to serve the interests o f
the sons o f A dam and m eet their needs.
T his requires them to do their utm ost to give thanks for His
blessings, and to think deeply and reflect upon His signs and wisdom.
H ence A llah says: ^V erily in that there are signs for people who
reflect)?.
To sum up: the creation and control o f these things, and the fact
that they are m ade to be o f service to hum anity, dem onstrate that
A llah’s will is alw ays done and are indicative o f His perfect might.
W hat is seen in them o f the precision and beauty with which they
are created and the amazing way in which they are crafted is indicative
o f the perfect w isdom and know ledge o f Allah.
W hat is seen in them o f th eir vast size and great num bers is
indicative o f the vastness o f A llah’s dom inion and authority.
W hat is seen in them o f specific functions and opposites indicates
that A llah does w hatever He wills.
W hat is seen in them o f benefits that serve hum an interests in both
spiritual and w orldly term s is indicative o f the vastness o f A llah ’s
mercy, and dem onstrates that His grace, kindness and care are all-
encom passing.
All o f that points to the fact that He alone is deserving o f devotion
and w orship, and it is not appropriate to w orship, show hum ility

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tow ards or love anyone but Him; and that His M essengers spoke the
truth in the m essage that they brought. This is clear rational evidence
that cannot be subject to doubt.

O 0

O o -U

45:14. Tell those who believe to forgive [for their offences] those who
do not fear the vengeance o f Allah, for He will requite such
people [in the hereafter] for their deeds.
45:15. W hoever does righteous deeds, it is to his own benefit and
whoever does evil deeds, it is to his own detriment. Then to
your Lord you will be brought back.

H ere A llah (3s) instructs His believing slaves to adopt a good


attitude and bear w ith patience the offence caused by the polytheists
w ho do not fear the vengeance o f A llah and do not hope for His
reward. For He will requite every people for what they have earned,
but He will rew ard you, O believers, abundantly for your faith,
tolerance and patience.
But if they persist in their disbelief, you will not suffer what they
will suffer o f severe punishm ent and disgrace. H ence A llah says:
W hoever does righteous deeds, it is to his own benefit and w hoever
does evil deeds, it is to his own detrim ent. Then to your Lord you will
be brought back)*. Then He says:

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<1 *

45:16. We gave the Children o f Israel the scripture, wisdom and


prophethood; provided them with good things; and favoured
them above all other nations [of that time],
45:17. We gave them clear directions in matters pertaining to religion,
and they did not differ except after knowledge had come to
them, out o f mutual envy and rivalry. Verily your Lord will
judge between them on the Day o f Resurrection concerning
that wherein they differ.

That is, We bestow ed upon the C hildren o f Israel blessings that


were not granted to any other people. We gave them ^the scripture)?,
nam ely the Torah and Gospel,
^w isd o m )? to judge between people
fjand prophethood^ by which they were distinguished, for prophethood
was bestow ed upon the descendants o f Ibraheem , and m ost o f them
(the Prophets) w ere from am ong the C hildren o f Israel.
^provided them with good things)? o f food, drink and clothing,
and sending dow n to them the m anna and quails.
*fand favoured them above all other nations [o f that time]}? that is,
We favoured them over all other nations with these blessings. Our
(M uslim ) U m m ah m ay be excluded from this general m eaning,
because they are the best com m unity ever brought forth for (the
benefit of) hum ankind (3: 110).
From the context we may understand that they are favoured over all
other nations apart from the (M uslim ) Um m ah, because Allah tells us

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about the blessings that He bestow ed upon the C hildren o f Israel, by


m eans o f which He made them distinct from others. But all the virtues
and blessings by m eans o f w hich the C hildren o f Israel surpassed
other nations - nam ely the scripture, wisdom , prophethood and other
qualities - w ere bestow ed upon this Um m ah, and m any m ore virtues
were granted to them. This law, the law o f the C hildren o f Israel, is
part o f these virtues, but this Book (the Q u r’an) confirms the scripture
that cam e before it and supersedes it (cf 5 :48)\ and M uham m ad (*|§|)
confirm s all the M essengers.
«(We gave them)? that is, but we gave to the C hildren o f Israel
^clear directions^ that is, signs to distinguish truth from falsehood
«fin m atters pertaining to religion)?.
These blessings that A llah bestow ed upon the C hildren o f Israel
required them to fulfil their religious duties in the most perfect m anner
and to unite upon the truth that A llah had m ade m anifest to them.
But they did the opposite o f that; they did the opposite o f w hat was
required and becam e divided at the tim e when they w ere enjoined to
unite. Hence Allah says:
^and they did not differ except after know ledge had com e to them)?
that required them not to differ. W hat made them differ was resentment
and w rongdoing tow ards one another.
^V erily y o u r Lord w ill ju d g e betw een them on the D ay o f
R esurrection concerning th at w h erein they differ)?. So He w ill
distinguish between the follower o f truth and the follower o f falsehood.
W hat m ade them differ was whim s and desires, and the like.

(lij Of*? pT*3*? cA*L]a)l lili, ^ ly ju

O S -u

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45:18. Now We have set you [O Muhammad] on a clear path o f religion;


so follow it and do not follow the desires o f those who have no
knowledge.
45:19. They cannot avail you at all against Allah. Verily the wrongdoers
are allies and protectors o f one another, but Allah is the Protector
o f the righteous.

That is, We have set out for you a clear path and sent down perfect
teachings that call to all that is good and forbid all that is evil
«fso follow it]i, for following it leads to eternal happiness, w ell-
being and prosperity
^an d do not follow the desires o f those w ho have no know ledge^
that is, those whose desires differ from what is dictated by knowledge
and are not in accordance with it. Everyone who w ants and desires
som ething that is contrary to the teachings o f the M essenger ( j|§ )
com es under the heading o f those who have no knowledge.
^T hey cannot avail you at all against A l l a h t h a t is, they cannot
benefit you at all before A llah, so they cannot bring you anything
good or ward o ff any harm from you, if you follow their desires. It is
not right to go along with them and take them as allies, for you and
they are not the same; rather they are allies o f one another.
«fbut Allah is the Protector o f the righteous^ - He brings them forth
from the depths o f darkness to the light because o f their piety and
acts o f obedience.

45:20. This [Q ur’an] contains clear proofs, and is a guidance and a


mercy for people who are certain in faith.

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^T his [Q u r’an]]?, the wise reminder, ^contains clear proofs)? that


is, by means o f it m atters will becom e clear to people, so the believers
will benefit from it, be guided and attain m ercy
«ffor people who are certain in faith]?, so they are guided by it to the
straight path with regard to fundamental and m inor issues o f religion,
and by m eans o f it they attain goodness, happiness and bliss in this
world and the hereafter, which is mercy. Thus their souls are purified,
they increase in w isdom , faith and certainty thereby, and p ro o f is
established thereby against those w ho persist in stubbornness.

45:21. Do those who commit evil deeds think that We will deal with
them as We deal with those who believe and do righteous deeds,
and that they will be alike in their living and their dying?21 How
ill they judge.

That is, do the evildoers, who com m it many sins and fall short in
their duties tow ards their Lord, think
^th at We w ill deal w ith them as We deal w ith those w ho believe
and do righteous deeds)? by keeping their duty tow ards their Lord
and avoiding that w hich incurs His w rath, so they constantly give
precedence to pleasing Him over their ow n w him s and desires. In

21 Believers and disbelievers are not alike during life, when dying or after
death. As Allah has made them different in this life, He will treat them
differently after they die. The disbeliever dies despairing of divine mercy
and not believing in the resurrection, and he will be punished as Allah
promised. In contrast, the believer dies hoping for divine mercy and
believing in the resurrection, and he will be rewarded as Allah promised.
(Ibn ‘Ashoor)

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other words, do they think that they w ill be ^alik e^ in this w orld and
the hereafter? How w rong is their way o f thinking and how ill they
judge, for their view is contrary to the ruling o f the w ise judgem ent
o f the M ost W ise, the M ost Just, and it is contrary to sound reasoning
and sound hum an nature; it is the opposite o f w hat was sent down
in the Books and w hat the M essengers taught. R ather the definite
ruling is that the believers who do righteous deeds will attain victory,
prosperity, happiness and reward, in this world and the hereafter, each
com m ensurate with his good deeds, but for the evildoers there will
be wrath, hum iliation, punishm ent and w retchedness, in this world
and in the hereafter.

0 0

45:22. Allah created the heavens and the earth for a true purpose, and
so that every soul may be requited according to what it earned,
and they will not be wronged.

T hat is, Allah created the heavens and the earth on the basis o f
w isdom , so that He alone m ay be w orshipped, w ith no partner or
associate. Then after that He will requite those whom He com m anded
to worship Him and upon whom He bestow ed blessings both visible
and hidden: did they give thanks to Allah 0 g ) and do w hat they w ere
enjoined to do? O r w ere they ungrateful and thus deserve the requital
o f ingratitude?

0 0

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(T1-YT liJU -l

45:23. Have you seen the one who takes his own whims and desires
as his god, whom Allah allows to go astray knowingly, and has
sealed up his hearing and his heart, and put a cover on his sight?
Who can guide him after Allah [has abandoned him]? Will you
not then pay heed?
45:24. And they say: There is nothing beyond our life in this world; we
die and we live,22 and nothing but the passage o f time causes
us to die. They have no knowledge o f that; they are merely
speculating.
45:25. W hen Our clear revelations are recited to them, their only
argument is to say: Then bring back our forefathers, if you are
telling the truth!
45:26. Say: It is Allah Who gives you life, then causes you to die;
then He will gather you together on the Day o f Resurrection,
concerning which there is no doubt. But most people do not
realise.

^H ave you seen)? the m isguided m an ^w ho takes his ow n whim s


and desires as his god)?, so w hatever he desires he pursues it, w hether
it is pleasing to A llah or incurs His anger
^w hom Allah allow s to go astray know ingly^ for A llah (^c) know s
that guidance is not appropriate for him and will not benefit him.
^ and has sealed up his hearing)? so that he cannot hear that which
w ould benefit him
^and his heart^ so that he does not understand w hat is good

22 That is, one generation dies and is succeeded by another. (al-Kash-shaJ)

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qand put a cover on his sight)? that prevents him from seeing the truth.
^W h o can guide him after A llah [has abandoned him]?)? In other
w ords, no one can guide him , for A llah has closed the gates o f
guidance for him and has opened the gates o f m isguidance for him.
A nd A llah has not w ronged him ; rather it is he w ho has w ronged
him self and is the cause o f divine m ercy being w ithheld from him
«|Will you not then pay heed^ to w hat will benefit you, so that you
can seek it, and w hat will harm you, so that you can avoid it?
^A nd they)? nam ely those who deny the resurrection
^say: There is nothing beyond our life in this world; we die and we
live, and nothing but the passage o f tim e causes us to d ie^ this is
nothing but the routine passage o f night and day, som e people die
and some people live, and those w ho die do not return to Allah and
will not be requited for their deeds.
These w ords o f theirs stem from lack o f know ledge; «fthey are
m erely speculating)? w hen they deny the resurrection and reject
the M essengers who speak the truth, w ithout any evidence or p roof
to support them in that. R ather it is m ere speculation and unlikely
ideas, devoid o f any reality. H ence A llah (M ) says: ^W h en O ur
clear revelations are recited to them , their only argum ent is to say:
Then bring back our forefathers, if you are telling the truth!)? This is
audacity tow ards Allah on their part, as they m ade this dem and and
claim ed that the truthfulness o f the M essengers o f Allah depended on
them bringing back their forefathers. But even if they brought them
every sign, they w ould not believe, unless the M essengers com plied
with w hat they said. But they w ere lying in w hat they said; their only
aim was to ju stify their rejection o f the M essengers’ call, not to seek
evidence for the truth. Allah (■Jg) says: ^Say: It is Allah W ho gives
you life, then causes you to die; then He w ill gather you together
on the D ay o f R esurrection, concerning w hich there is no doubt.
But m ost people do not realise)? otherw ise, if know ledge o f the Last

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Day had really reached their hearts, they w ould strive hard for it and
prepare for it.

O 0

45:27. To Allah belongs the dominion o f the heavens and the earth.
On the day when the Hour begins, on that day the followers o f
falsehood will be the losers.
45:28. You will see every community on its knees. Every community
will be called to its Book, [and it will be said:] Today you will
be requited for what you used to do.
45:29. This Book o f Ours will testify against you truthfully, for We
used to put on record all that you did.
45:30. As for those who believed and did righteous deeds, their Lord
will admit them to His mercy. That is the clearest triumph.

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45:31. And as for those who disbelieved, [it will be said to them:] Were
not My revelations recited to you? But you showed arrogance
and were wicked people.
45:32. When it was said [to you]: Verily the promise o f Allah is true
and there is no doubt about the Hour, you said: We do not know
what the Hour is; we think it is just a matter o f conjecture, but
we are not entirely certain.
45:33. The evil consequences o f what they have done will become
apparent to them, and the very thing [punishment] they used to
ridicule will overwhelm them.
45:34. It will be said to them: Today We will forget you as you forgot
that you would ever meet this day o f yours. Your abode will be
the fire, and you will have no helpers.
45:35. That is because you made a mockery o f A llah’s revelations,
and you were deceived by the life o f this world. So on that day
they will not be brought forth from it [the fire], nor will they
be allowed to make amends.
45:36. So praise be to Allah, Lord o f the heavens and Lord o f the earth,
Lord o f the worlds.
45:37. To Him belongs all supremacy in the heavens and on earth, and
He is the Almighty, Most Wise.

Here A llah (4c) tells us o f the vastness o f His dom inion, and that
He alone controls it at all times, and that «[On the day w hen the Hour
begins]? and all creatures are gathered on the Day o f Resurrection,
the follow ers o f falsehood will be the losers - those w ho cam e up
with false argum ents in an attem pt to refute the truth thereby. Their
deeds are invalid, because they are based on falsehood; thus they
will becom e invalid on the Day o f Resurrection, the day on which
all facts will becom e clear and all false argum ents will avail them
nothing, and they will miss out on the reward and will receive a painful
punishm ent.

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Then Allah (4s) describes the intensity o f the Day o f Resurrection,


and how terrifying it will be, so as to w arn people o f it and so that
they m ay prepare for it:
^You will see)? on that day fjevery com m unity on its knees)? in fear
and panic, aw aiting the judgem ent o f the M ost G racious Sovereign.
^E very com m unity will be called to its Book)? that is, to the law
o f its Prophet who came to them from Allah: did they com ply with
it and thus attain rew ard and salvation? O r did they neglect it, and
thus incur loss?
The nation o f M oosa will be called to the law o f M oosa, the nation
o f ‘Eesa will be called likewise, and the U m m ah o f M uham m ad ( ^ )
will be called likewise; each nation will be called to the law that it
was enjoined to follow.
T his is one o f the p o ssib le m eanings o f this verse, and it is
undoubtedly sound and valid in and o f itself. O r it m ay be that what
is m eant by the w ords ^E very com m unity will be called to its B ook^
is that every com m unity will be called to the record o f its deeds and
w hat was w ritten down o f its actions, both good and evil, and each
person will be requited for w hat he h im self has done, as A llah (4s)
says: ^W hoever does righteous deeds, it is to his ow n benefit and
w hoever does evil deeds, it is to his own detriment)? (45:15).
O r it m ay be that both m eanings are intended. This is indicated by
the w ords ^This Book o f Ours will testify against you truthfully)? that
is, this Book o f Ours that We sent dow n to you w ill ju dge betw een
you on the basis o f truth, which is justice
^fo r We used to put on record all that you did)? - this refers to the
book o f deeds.
Hence Allah explains how He will deal with the tw o parties, as
He says:
^A s for those who believed and did righteous d eeds^ that is, they
held sound beliefs and confirm ed their faith w ith righteous deeds,
both obligatory and recom m ended

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^th eir Lord will adm it them to His mercy)? the location o f which is
paradise, with all that it contains o f eternal delights and a life o f ease.
^T hat is the clearest triumph)? that is, clear trium ph, salvation, gain
and success which, if a person attains it, he has attained all that is
good and w arded o ff all that is bad.
(•(And as for those w ho disbelieved)? in A llah, it will be said to
them , by way o f rebuke and chastisem ent:
((Were not M y revelations recited to you)? w hich show ed you that
which was in your best interests, and forbade to you that w hich was
harmful to you? This was a great blessing that reached you, if you
had w anted to attain it, but you w ere too arrogant to accept it and
you turned aw ay from it and disbelieved in it. Thus you com m itted
the greatest offence and w orst crim e, so today you will be requited
for what you used to do.
They will also be rebuked by the words: ((When it was said [to
you]: Verily the prom ise o f Allah is true and there is no doubt about
the Hour, you said)? denying it: ((We do not know w hat the H our
is; we think it is ju st a m atter o f conjecture, but we are not entirely
certain)?. This is how they were in this world and will be at the time
o f the resurrection: they will continue to deny it and reject the words
o f those w ho told them about it.
((The evil consequences o f w hat they have done will becom e
apparent to them)? that is, on the Day o f Resurrection, the punishments
for their deeds will becom e clear to them
((and the very thing [punishment] they used to ridicule will overwhelm
them)? that is, befall them. In other words, the punishm ent that they
used to ridicule and mock in this world will befall them.
((It will be said to them: Today We will forget yo u ^ that is, We
will leave you in the punishm ent
((as you forgot that you would ever m eet this day o f yours)?, for the
requital fits the nature o f the deeds.

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^Y our abode will be the fire)? that is, it is your destination and your
fate
«fand you will have no helpers^ to protect you from the punishm ent
o f A llah and ward o ff His wrath from you.
^That)} w hich w ill befall you o f punishm ent is because ^y o u
m ade a m ockery o f A llah ’s revelations)? even though they should
have m otivated you to strive hard and try your best, and you should
have received them with joy.
«fand you w ere deceived by the life o f this w o rld ^ w ith all its
adornm ents, pleasures and desires. So you w ere at ease with it and
strove for it, and you failed to strive for the eternal realm.
^S o on that day they will not be brought forth from it [the fire],
nor will they be allow ed to m ake amends)?. They will not be given
any respite and they will not be sent back to this w orld so that they
can do righteous deeds.
«[So praise be to Allah)? as befits His m ajesty and im m ense pow er
^L ord o f the heavens and Lord o f the earth, Lord o f the worlds)? that
is, to Him be praise for His Lordship and care for all creatures, as He
created them and cares for them , and bestow s blessings upon them ,
both visible and hidden.
^To Him belongs all suprem acy in the heavens and on earth)? that
is, to Him belong majesty, greatness and glory.
T his is praising A llah for His p erfect attributes, His love and
honour, and suprem acy that reflects greatness and majesty. W orship
is based on two foundations: love o f Allah and hum ility towards Him,
both o f which stem from know ledge o f the praisew orthy attributes,
m ajesty and suprem acy o f Allah.
^and He is the Almighty)? W ho subdues all things
^ M o st Wise)? W ho does all that is appropriate, so w hatever He
prescribes is for a w ise reason and in o rd er to achieve beneficial
interests, and w hatever He creates is for a purpose.

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This is the end of the commentary on Soorat al-Jathiyah.


All praise and thanks are for Allah, and may the blessings and
peace of Allah be upon Prophet Muhammad ( ^ ) , his family, and
his Companions abundantly until the Day of Judgement.

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46.
Soorat al-Ahqaf
(Makki)

In the name o f Allah,


the Most Gracious, the M ost Merciful

(V- A:

46:1. Ha’. Meem.


46:2. The revelation o f the Book is from Allah, the Almighty, the
Most Wise.
46:3. We have not created the heavens and the earth, and all that is
between them, except for a true purpose and for an appointed
term. But those who disbelieve pay no heed to the warning that
is given to them.

This is praise and veneration from A llah (4s) for His holy Book,
highlighting its dignity and im plicitly telling people to seek guidance
by its light, focus on pondering its verses and extract its treasure.

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Having referred to the revelation o f His Book that contains com m ands
and prohibitions, Allah now m entions His creation o f the heavens and
the earth, thus com bining the creation and the com m and.
^...V erily, His is the creation and the c o m m a n d ...^ (al-A‘raf7: 54)
This is like the verses in w hich Allah (4c) says:
^ It is A llah W ho created seven heavens and o f the earth the like
thereof. His decree descends throughout them ...]* (at-Talaq 65:12)
- and:
^H e sends down the angels with His revelation by His com m and to
w hom ever am ong His slaves He w ills, saying: Proclaim that there is
no god but I, so fear Me. He created the heavens and the earth for a
true p u rp o se ... }j> (an-Nahl 16: 2-3)
It is Allah (4c) W ho created those who are accountable, and He
created their dw ellings and m ade to be o f service to them all that is in
the heavens and on earth, then He sent His M essengers to them , and
sent down to them His Books. He sent His com m ands and prohibitions
to them and told them that this realm is the realm o f striving and
a place for those w ho strive to pass through; it is not a place o f
settlem ent that people will never leave. R ather they will m ove on
from it to the place o f settlem ent and the eternal abode, and they will
find the rew ard for their deeds that they did in this realm w aiting for
them in full in that realm.
Thus Allah establishes proof that points to that realm and gives
people a taste o f rew ard and punishm ent in this w orld, so as to
m otivate them to seek what they love and flee from w hat they fear.
Therefore He says here: <-(We have not created the heavens and the
earth, and all that is between them , except for a true purpose]* that is,
We have not created them w ithout purpose or in vain; rather it is so
that people will come to know the greatness o f the C reator thereof and
find evidence o f His perfect attributes, and so that they m ay com e to
know that the One W ho created both realm s, despite their vastness,

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is able to recreate people after their death in order to requite them ,


and that their creation and life is lim ited ^ fo r an appointed term}?.
Having told us o f that - and He is the m ost truthful o f speakers -
and thus established p ro o f and lighted the way, Allah now tells us that
despite that, some people insist on turning aw ay from the truth and
turning aw ay from the call o f the M essengers, as He says: ^B ut those
who disbelieve pay no heed to the w arning that is given to them)?.
As for those who believe, when they cam e to know the truth, they
responded to the com m ands o f their Lord, accepted the truth and
subm itted with hum ility and veneration. Thus they attained all that
is good and all that is evil was w arded o ff from them.

O <1

d -t
46:4. Say: Tell me about those on whom you call besides Allah. Show
me what they have created on the earth. Or do they have any
share in the heavens? Bring me [proof from] a Book revealed
before this, or some remnant o f knowledge, if you are telling
the truth.
46:5. Who is more astray than one who calls upon, besides Allah,
those who will not answer him until the Day o f Resurrection,
and are oblivious to his call?
46:6. When humankind are gathered [on the Day o f Resurrection],
they will become their enemies and will reject their worship o f
them.

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^Say)* to these people w ho associate idols and rivals in worship


with Allah, w hich have no pow er to bring benefit or cause harm , or
to cause death, give life or resurrect - say to them , highlighting the
helplessness o f their idols and pointing out that they do not deserve
anything o f worship: ([Tell me about those on w hom you call besides
Allah. Show me w hat they have created on the earth. O r do they have
any share in the heavens?)*.
H ave they created any o f the heavenly bodies or any o f the
creatures on earth? Have they created m ountains? Have they caused
rivers to flow ? H ave they scattered anim als throughout the earth?
Have they caused trees to grow ? Did they help in the creation o f any
o f these things?
They have done none o f these things, by their ow n adm ission, let
alone the adm ission o f anyone else. This offers definitive rational
evidence that the worship o f anyone or anything other than Allah is
invalid.
M oreover, there is no textual evidence: ([Bring me [proof from]
a B ook revealed before this]*, nam ely a book th at p rom otes the
association o f others with Allah,
(-for som e rem nant o f knowledge)* inherited from the M essengers,
that enjoins that.
It is well known that they are incapable o f bringing any evidence
to that effect from any o f the M essengers; in fact we are confident and
certain that all the M essengers promoted the affirmation o f the oneness
o f their Lord, and they forbade associating others with Him. This is
the greatest know ledge that is narrated from them. Allah (4c) says:
(fIndeed, We sent to every nation a M essenger [saying]: W orship
Allah [alone] and shun false g o d s ...^ (an-Nahl 16: 36)
And every M essenger said to his people:
([...w orship Allah; you have no god but He...)* (al-A'ra/7: 65)

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Thus it is known that the argument that the polytheists give for their
association o f others with Allah is not based on p ro o f or evidence;
rather they rely on false notions, ill-founded opinions and corrupt
reasoning.
W hat indicates that their argum ent is invalid is studying their
stories, finding out about their know ledge and deeds, and exam ining
the situation o f those who spent their lifetimes worshipping false gods:
did it benefit them at all in this w orld or in the hereafter?
Hence Allah (4%) says: ffWho is m ore astray than one who calls
upon, besides A llah, those who will not answ er him until the Day o f
R esurrection^ that is, for the duration o f his stay on earth, and they
do not benefit him even an atom ’s weight
^and are oblivious to his call^ for they do not hear or respond to any
call. This is how they are in this world, and on the Day o f Resurrection
they will reject their association o f them with Allah.
^W hen humankind are gathered [on the Day o f Resurrection], they
will become their enemies j* - they will curse one another and disavow
one another, and they (the false gods) ^w ill reject their w orship o f
them]*.

J* ( J ) ^ jtil "C.j I

jc . jjk ih i>*

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46:7. W hen O ur clear revelations are recited to them, those who


disbelieve say o f the truth when it com es to them: This is
obviously magic!
46:8. Or do they say: He has fabricated it himself? Say [O Muhammad]:
If 1did fabricate it, then there is nothing you can do to shield me
from the punishment o f Allah. He knows best what you utter
against it. Sufficient is He as a witness between me and you,
and He is the Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.
46:9. Say [O Muhammad]: I am not the first o f the Messengers, and
I do not know what will happen to me or to you. 1 only follow
what is revealed to me, and I am but a clear wamer.
46:10. Say: What do you think, if it [the Q ur’an] is really from Allah
but you reject it? What if a witness from among the Children
o f Israel has testified in its favour and has believed, whilst you
remain arrogant? Verily Allah does not guide people who are
given to wrongdoing.

That is, when «|Our clear revelations)? are recited to the disbelievers,
in such a way that they cannot doubt them, that does not benefit them;
rather p ro o f is established against them thereby, and they say by way
o f fabrication, f[of the truth when it com es to them: This is obviously
m agic!)? That is, it is clearly and undoubtedly magic. This is a kind
o f turning the facts upside down, but no one can be fooled by that
except those who are weak in reasoning. O therw ise the difference
between the truth that was brought by the M essenger ($&) and magic
is greater than the distance betw een heaven and earth.
How can the truth - which is as sublim e as the stars and w hose light
surpasses that o f the sun, and is supported by evidence in the universe
and in their own selves, and is affirm ed and accepted by people o f
insight and m ature thinking - be com pared with falsehood such as
magic, which only com es from m isguided wrongdoers who are evil
at heart and evil in their deeds, so it is appropriate for them and suits
their condition?

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^O r do they say: He has fabricated it himself)* that is, M uham m ad


(«i!t) has fabricated this Q u r’an him self, and it is not from A llah?
^S ay [O Muhammad])* to them: ^ I f I did fabricate it)* then Allah
has pow er over m e and He has know ledge o f your plan and w hat
you say about it, so why has He not punished me for fabricating it,
as you claim ?
Is there anything ^you can do to shield me from the punishm ent
o f Allah)* if it be His will to harm me or to have m ercy on me?
^Sufficient is He as a w itness betw een m e and you)*. If I was m aking
it up, He w ould have seized me by my right hand and punished me
with a punishm ent that w ould be seen by all, because this is the worst
type o f fabrication, if I w ere really attributing it falsely to Him.
Then Allah calls them to repent, despite w hat they have done o f
stubbornly rejecting the truth and disputing it: dand He is the Off-
Forgiving, M ost Merciful)* that is, so repent to Him and give up what
you are doing; He will forgive you your sins, have m ercy on you,
guide you to all that is good and rew ard you immensely.
dSay [O Muhammad]: I am not the first o f the Messengers)* that is,
I am not the first M essenger to com e to you, such that you should find
my m ission strange and find my call odd. There have been previous
M essengers and Prophets w hose call was like m ine, so w hy do you
object to my m essage?
^and I do not know w hat will happen to m e or to you)* that is, I am
only hum an; I have no control over anything, for it is A llah (4c) W ho
is in control o f me and you, and He will decide betw een me and you.
I am not bringing anything o f m y own accord,
(fand I am but a clear wamer)* if you accept m y m essage and respond
to my call, that is your good fortune in this w orld and the hereafter,
but if you reject my m essage, then your reckoning will be w ith Allah.
I have w arned you and w hoever is given a prior w arning is left with
no excuse.

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^Say: W hat do you think, if it [the Q u r’an] is really from Allah


but you reject it? W hat if a w itness from am ong the C hildren o f
Israel has testified in its favour and has believed, whilst you remain
arrogant?^ That is, tell me, if this Q u r’an is from Allah and those
who are guided am ong the People o f the Book testify to its truth, for
they have know ledge o f the truth by w hich they know that it is true,
so they believe in it and are guided, and thus it is proven that w hat the
Prophets brought was all in harm ony and their follow ers are people
o f dignity, w hilst you, O ignorant ones, are too arrogant to follow it.
Can this be anything but the greatest w rongdoing and worst disbelief?
^Verily Allah does not guide people who are given to w rongdoing^
- part o f w rongdoing is being too arrogant to follow the truth after
it com es within reach.

OY-l \

46:11. Those who disbelieve say o f those who believe: If it [the Q ur’an]
were a good thing, they would not have believed in it before us.
Since they have not let themselves be guided by it, they will
continue to say: This is an ancient fabrication.
46:12. But before it came the Book o f Moosa [which was revealed as] a
guide and a mercy. This Book, which is in the Arabic language,
confirms it, warning those who do wrong and bringing glad
tidings to those who do good.

That is, those w ho stubbornly disbelieved in the truth and rejected


its call said: «flf it [the Q ur’an] were a good thing, they would not have

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believed in it before us)* that is, the believers w ould not have beaten
us to it; rather we w ould have been the first to em brace it. This is pure
nonsense. W hat evidence is there that the sign o f som ething being
the truth is that the rejecters should attain it before the believers? Are
they m ore pure at heart or m ore perfect in reasoning? O r is guidance
under their control?
R ather with these words they w ere trying to console them selves,
like one w ho fails to attain som ething so he begins to criticise it.
Hence A llah says:
Since they have not let them selves be guided by it, they will continue
to say: This is an ancient fabrication^ that is, this is the reason why
they said that about it: because they w ere not guided by this Q u r’an
and they missed out on the greatest blessing, they criticised it by saying
that it w as a lie, when it is undoubtedly true and is in accordance with
the previous Books, especially the m ost perfect and best o f them after
the Q u r’an, nam ely the Torah, w hich A llah sent dow n to M oosa as
^ a guide and a mercy)* that is, the C hildren o f Israel follow ed it and
were guided by it, and thus it brought them good in this w orld and
the hereafter.
([This Book)* nam ely the Q u r’an
([which is in the Arabic language)* so that it is easy to approach and
understand
^confirm s it)* that is, it confirm s the previous Books and testifies in
their favour by being in harm ony with them.
([warning those who do wrong)* that is, w ho w rong them selves by
indulging in disbelief, im m orality and sin; if they persist in their
w rongdoing, it w arns them o f a grave punishm ent.
But it gives glad tidings to those w ho do good by w orshipping
the C reator and being kind to others, o f a great rew ard in this world
and the hereafter. It m entions the deeds that it w arns against and the
deeds for which it gives glad tidings.

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162 |

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46:13. Verily those who say: Our Lord is Allah, then rem ain steadfast,
will have no fear, nor will they grieve.
46:14. They will be the inhabitants o f paradise; they will abide therein
forever, as a reward for what they used to do.

That is, those who acknow ledge th eir Lord, testify to H is o n en e ss


and are constant in their obedience to H im ,
({then remain steadfast}* all their lives
({will have no fear}* o f any turm oil that lies ahead o f them
({nor will they grieve^ over w hatever they leave behind them .
({They will be the inhabitants o f paradise}* that is, they w ill be its
people who abide therein, w ho w ill n ever w ant to leave it o r d esire
anything else.
({they will abide therein forever, as a rew ard for w h at they used
to do}* o f believing in A llah, w hich required them to do the rig h teo u s
deeds in w hich they rem ained steadfast.

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Soorat al-Ahqaf (15-16) | 163

46:15. We have enjoined upon man kindness to his parents. With


hardship his mother bears him and with hardship she brings
him forth, and his bearing and weaning take thirty months. Then
when he reaches his prime and reaches the age o f forty years, he
says: O my Lord, inspire me to be constantly grateful for Your
blessings that You have bestowed upon me and my parents,
and to do righteous deeds with which You will be pleased; and
establish righteousness among my offspring for me. Verily I
repent to You and verily I am one o f those who submit to Allah
[in Islam].
46:16. Such are the ones from whom We will accept their righteous
deeds and overlook their bad deeds. They will be among the
inhabitants o f paradise - a true promise that has been given to
them.

Because o f His kindness tow ards His slaves and His appreciation
towards parents, Allah ( 4?) enjoins and instructs children to treat their
parents kindly, by speaking to them gently and nicely, spending on
them , and other ways o f show ing kindness.
T hen He points out the reason for that, by m entioning w hat the
m other has to go through o f hardship because o f her child, such as
hardship during pregnancy, then the hardship o f birth, which is very
painful, then the hardship o f breastfeeding and looking after the child
at that time. The things m entioned do not last for a short time, one
or tw o hours; rather they go on for a long tim e, ^ th irty months]*.
Pregnancy lasts nine m onths or so, and the rem ainder o f that tim e is
for breastfeeding. This refers to w hat is usually the case.
This verse, along with the verse:
([M others m ay breastfeed their children for tw o w hole years...]*
(al-Baqarah 2: 233)
- is quoted as evidence that the m inim um length o f pregnancy
is six m onths, because if the period o f breastfeeding - w hich is two

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164 I Tafseer as-Sa 'di Juz’26

years - is subtracted from thirty m onths, what is left is six m onths


for pregnancy.
((Then w hen he reaches his prime]* that is, the pinnacle o f his
youth and intellect,
((and reaches the age o f forty years, he says: O my Lord, inspire m e^
that is, guide me and help me
^to be constantly grateful for Your blessings that You have bestow ed
upon m e and m y parents]* that is, spiritual blessings and w orldly
blessings. G ratitude m eans using those blessings in obedience to the
O ne W ho bestow ed them and granted them , and responding to His
b lessings by acknow ledging and adm itting o n e ’s inability to give
proper thanks, and striving to praise Allah for them. A blessing to the
parents is a blessing to their children and descendants, because they
will inevitably get som e o f them and some o f their effects, especially
the blessing o f religious com m itm ent, because the righteousness o f
the parents, that is based on know ledge and deeds, is one o f the main
reasons for the righteousness o f their children.
^and to do righteous deeds with which You will be pleased^ by
helping me to do the type o f deed that m eets all the prerequisites o f
being sound and right, and is free o f anything that m ay spoil it. Such
is the deed that Allah is pleased with and accepts, and for w hich He
gives reward.
^and establish righteousness am ong m y offspring for m e | - as he
prayed for him self to be righteous, he also prayed for his offspring
to be righteous, asking A llah to rectify their condition. He stated
that the benefit o f the children’s righteousness com es back to their
parents, because he said, ((and establish righteousness am ong my
offspring for me]*.
^Verily I repent to You]* from sins and acts o f disobedience, and
I com e back to obedience to You, ^and verily I am one o f those who
subm it to A llah [in Islam ]^.

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([Suchj* that is, those who are described here


(fare the ones from w hom We will accept their righteous deeds)* which
are acts o f obedience, because they also do other kinds o f deeds,
(fand overlook their bad deeds)* in general terms.
^T hey will be am ong the inhabitants o f paradise)* so they will attain
goodness and w hat they seek, and evil and what they dislike will be
rem oved from them.
<[a true prom ise that has been given to them)* that is, this prom ise that
We have m ade to them is a true prom ise from the One W ho is truest
in speech, W ho does not break His prom ise.

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46:17. But some say to their parents: Fie on you both! Are you telling
me that I will be brought forth [from the grave] even though
many generations have passed away before me? They seek
Allah’s help [and say]: Woe to you! Have faith, for the promise
o f Allah is true. But he says: This is nothing but tales o f the
ancients.
46:18. Such are the ones for whom the punishment becomes inevitable,
as happened to nations o fjinn and men who came before them,
for indeed they are [all] losers.
46:19. For all there will be ranks according to their deeds, so that
[Allah] may pay them in full for their deeds, and no one will
be wronged.

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Having m entioned the situation o f the righteous one who honours


his parents, Allah (4s) now tells us o f the situation o f the one who is
disobedient to his parents, and that it is the w orst o f situations:
f(But som e say to their parents)? when they call them to believe in
A llah and the Last Day, and warn them o f the requital.
This is a great act o f kindness and the best thing that the parents
can do for their child, to call him to that w hich leads to eternal
happiness and bliss, but he responds in the w orst m anner and says:
c(Fie on you both!)? That is, m ay you perish, you and what you have
brought.
Then he explains why he thinks that unlikely, rejecting this idea:
^A re you telling me that I will be brought forth [from the grave])? on
the Day o f Resurrection
«(even though m any generations have passed aw ay before me?)?
That is, m any generations have passed aw ay who w ere disbelievers,
follow ing the path o f disbelief, and they w ere the leaders for every
stubborn, ignorant disbeliever?
efThey)? nam ely his parents ^seek A llah’s help)? in dealing with
him, and they say to him: ^W oe to you! Have faith)? that is, they do
their utm ost in trying hard to guide him, to the extent that - in their
keenness for him to be guided - they seek the help o f A llah, like
one who is drow ning, asking Him in desperation, trying to convince
their son and feeling sad for him, trying to explain the truth to him.
Hence they say: f(for the prom ise o f Allah is true)?. Then they present
w hatever evidence they can to him.
But their son only increases in stubbornness, aversion, arrogance
towards the truth, and speaking ill o f it.
cjBut he says: This is nothing but tales o f the ancients)? that is, it is
only som ething that was transm itted from the books o f the earlier
generations; it is not from Allah, and Allah did not reveal it to His
M essenger ($ ip .

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Everyone knows that M uham m ad ( i|§ ) was unlettered and could


neither read nor write, and did not leam from anyone. So where did he
learn it from? How could people produce som ething like this Q u r’an,
even if they cam e together to do so?
^S uch are the ones)? that is, the ones who are in this blam ew orthy
state
^for whom the punishm ent becomes inevitable)? that is, they deserved
the punishm ent
^as happened to nations o f jin n and m en who cam e before them)?,
who followed the path o f disbelief and rejection. So these people will
be included with them and will disappear in their midst.
^fo r indeed they are [all] losers)? - loss m eans losing one’s capital,
for if a m an loses his capital, it is m ore apt that he should lose the
profits thereon. They have lost faith, and did not attain any bliss, nor
w ere they safe from the punishm ent o f hell.
^F o r all)? that is, for both good people and evil people
^there will be ranks according to their deeds)? that is, for each one
according to his level o f good or evil. T heir ranks in the hereafter
will be according to their deeds. Hence Allah says: ffso that [Allah]
m ay pay them in full for their deeds, and no one will be wronged)?
by having anything added to their bad deeds or anything subtracted
from their good deeds.

(T-

46:20. On the day when those who disbelieved are brought before
the fire, [it will be said to them]: You had your share o f good

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things in the life o f the [previous] world, and you had your fill
o f pleasure. Today you will be recompensed with a humiliating
punishment, because you behaved arrogantly on earth without
justification and because you acted rebelliously.

Here Allah (te ) m entions the state o f the disbelievers when they
are brought before the fire and rebuked and chastised. It will be said to
them: ((You had your share o f good things in the life o f the [previous]
world)?, when you felt content with the world, w ere deceived by its
pleasures and were pleased w ith its desires. Its good things distracted
you from striving for your hereafter, and you enjoyed it in the m anner
o f grazing anim als. That was your share, and you have no share o f
the hereafter.
^Today you will be recom pensed with a hum iliating punishment)?
that is, a severe punishm ent that will hum iliate you and expose you to
sham e, because you used to say o f Allah that w hich was not true, for
you used to attribute to Allah and to His decree the path o f misguidance
that you w ere following, but you were lying w hen you said that,
(•(and because you acted rebelliously^ and w ere too arrogant to obey
Allah.
Thus they com bined speaking w ords o f falsehood, acting upon
falsehood, telling lies against A llah by attributing their falsehood
to Him, casting aspersions upon the truth and being too arrogant to
follow it. So they will be given the m ost severe o f punishm ents.

0 0

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46:21. Remember the brother o f ‘Ad [namely Hood], when he warned


his people in [the land of] al-A hqaf - and indeed there came
wamers before him and after him - [saying]: Do not worship any
but Allah. Verily I fear for you the punishment o f a momentous
day.
46:22. They said: Have you come to lure us away from our gods? Bring
us that with which you are threatening us, if you are telling the
truth.
46:23. He said: Knowledge [of when it will come] is only with Allah.
I only convey to you the message with which I have been sent.
But I see that you are ignorant people.
46:24. When they saw it [the punishment] as a cloud approaching their
valleys, they said: This is a cloud bringing us rain. [Hood said:]
Nay; rather it is that which you sought to hasten - a wind bearing
a painful punishment.
46:25. It will destroy everything by the command o f its Lord. And they
became such that there was nothing left to be seen except their
[empty] dwellings. Thus We requite the evildoers.
46:26. We gave them power [and prosperity] to an extent to which We
did not give it to you [O Quraysh], and We gave them hearing,
sight and intellect. But neither their hearing nor their sight nor
their intellect was o f any avail to them, for they used to reject
the signs o f Allah. And the very thing [punishment] they used
to ridicule overwhelmed them.

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4 Remember)? that is, by way o f praise


^the brother o f ‘Ad [namely Hood])? ( ^ ) , who was one o f the noble
M essengers w hom A llah (■$£) blessed by m aking them callers to His
religion who guided people tow ards Him.
^w h en he w arned his people)? nam ely ‘A d ^ in [the land of]
al-Ahqaf)? that is, in their dw ellings that w ere known as al-ahqaf, a
word w hich refers to an area w here there is a great deal o f sand, in
the land o f Yemen.
«[and indeed there cam e w am ers before him and after him)? so he
w as not the first am ong them and w as no different from them . He
said to them: f[Do not w orship any but Allah. Verily I fear for you
the punishm ent o f a m om entous day^.
Thus he instructed them to w orship A llah, w hich includes all
good words and praisew orthy deeds. A nd he forbade them to ascribe
partners to A llah or m ake others equal to Him. And he w arned them,
if they did not obey him, o f the severe punishm ent. But this call was
to no avail in their case.
([They said: H ave you com e to lure us aw ay from our gods?)?
That is, you have no other aim , and there is no truth in w hat you say.
You are envying us for what we have o f gods and you w ant to turn
us aw ay from them.
^B ring us that with which you are threatening us, if you are telling
the truth)? - this is the utm ost ignorance and stubbornness.
^H e said: Know ledge [o f when it will come] is only with Allah)?
for it is He in W hose Hand is control o f all things, and it is He W ho
will bring you the punishm ent if He so wills.
^1 only convey to you the m essage with w hich I have been sent)?
that is, m y only responsibility is to convey the m essage clearly.
^B u t I see that you are ignorant people)?, therefore you did w hat you
did o f show ing extrem e audacity.

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So A llah sent against them the severe punishm ent, nam ely the
w ind that destroyed them utterly.
H ence He says: ffWhen they saw it [the punishm ent] as a cloud
approaching their valleys)? that is, it appeared like a cloud that cam e
towards their valleys, that would provide water with which they would
irrigate their land and drink from their wells and stream s
^they said)? optim istically: ^T his is a cloud bringing us rain)» that is,
this cloud will give us rain.
^[H ood said:] Nay; rather it is that w hich you sought to hasten)j
that is, this is what you have brought upon yourselves w hen you said:
^B ring us that with w hich you are threatening us, if you are telling
the truth)? (46: 22).
^ a wind bearing a painful punishm ent. It will destroy everything^
that it passes over, because o f its intensity and destructive power.
A llah sent it against them:
.. .for seven nights and eight days in succession, so that you w ould
have seen the people lying lifeless as if they w ere the trunks o f fallen
palm trees.)? (al-Haqqah 69: 7)
- ^by the com m and o f its Lord)? that is, by His leave and His will.
^ A n d they becam e such that there w as nothing left to be seen
except their [empty] dwellings)? that is, their flocks, their w ealth and
they them selves w ere destroyed.
^Thus We requite the evildoers)? because o f their sin and wrongdoing.
A lthough A llah (4g) had bestow ed great blessings upon them ,
they did not give thanks to Him or rem em ber Him. Hence He says:
«[We gave them pow er [and prosperity] to an extent to w hich We did
not give it to you [O Quraysh])? that is, We gave them pow er (and
prosperity) in the land, so they w ere helping them selves to its good
things and enjoying its pleasures. We m ade their lives long enough
for anyone w ho m ight reflect and pay heed to do so (cf. 35: 37), and
for anyone who m ight be guided to follow guidance. In other words,

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We gave ‘Ad pow er and prosperity m ore than We have given to you
(O Q uraysh), so do not think that w hat We have bestow ed upon you
has never been given to anyone else, or that it will protect you from
the punishm ent o f Allah at all. R ather others w ere given m ore pow er
and prosperity than you, but their w ealth, sons and troops did not
avail them before Allah in the slightest.
^and We gave them hearing, sight and intellect^ that is, there was
no shortcom ing in their hearing, sight or intellect, such that it could
be said that they neglected the truth out o f ignorance and were unable
to learn about it. There was nothing w rong with their reasoning, but
guidance is in the Hand o f Allah.
^B ut neither their hearing nor their sight nor their intellect w as o f
any avail to them ^ at all.
That is because they dused to reject the signs o f Allah p that pointed
to His oneness and indicated that He alone is to be w orshipped.
^ A n d th e v ery th in g [p u n ish m en t] they u sed to rid icu le
overw helm ed them]? that is, there befell them the punishm ent that
they denied w ould happen, and they ridiculed the M essengers who
w arned them o f it.

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46:27. Indeed We destroyed the cities that w ere around you [O


Quraysh], having given them a variety o f signs, so that they
might turn back [from their evil ways].
46:28. Why then was no help forthcoming to them from those whom
they took as gods besides Allah so that they might bring them

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closer to Him? Nay, they were lost from them; such was the
outcome o f their lie and the fabrication they used to invent.

H ere A llah (4 s) w arns the p o ly th eist A rabs and o th ers by


m entioning the destruction o f the disbelieving nations who had lived
around th eir land; in fact m any o f them had lived in the A rabian
Peninsula itself, such as ‘Ad, T ham ood and others. A llah (4s) sent
various signs to them , o f different types, ^so that they m ight turn
back [from their evil waysj'p that is, so that they m ight give up their
w ays o f disbelief and rejection.
B ut because they did not believe, A llah seized them w ith the
vehem ent grip o f One W ho is A lm ighty, O m nipotent (cf. 54: 42), and
their gods upon w hom they called besides Allah did not help them
in the slightest. H ence A llah says here: ^ W h y then w as no help
forthcom ing to them from those w hom they took as gods besides
A llah so that they m ight bring them closer to H im ^ and because they
hoped that they w ould benefit them ?
^Nay, they w ere lost from them)*, so they did not respond to them
or protect them.
^such was the outcom e o f their lie and the fabrication they used
to invent^ by way o f wishful thinking, as they claim ed that they w ere
follow ing the truth and that their deeds w ould benefit them , but they
cam e to nought.

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46:29. And [remember] when We sent a group o f jinn to you, to listen


to the Q ur’an. When they were close enough to hear it, they said
[to one another]: Listen attentively. And when [the recitation]
was over, they went back to their people to warn them.
46:30. They said: O our people, verily we have heard [recitation from] a
Book that has been revealed after Moosa, confirming that which
came before it, guiding to the truth and to a straight path.
46:31. O our people, respond to the one who is calling to Allah, and
believe in him, so that Allah may forgive you some o f your sins
and protect you from a painful punishment.
46:32. And whoever does not respond to the one who is calling to Allah
can never escape [Allah’s punishment] on earth, and besides
Him he has no protectors. Such people are clearly misguided.

Allah (4c) sent His M essenger M uham m ad ( « ||) to all o f creation,


both hum ans and jinn, and he had to convey to all the m essage o f
his prophethood.
As for hum ans, he w as able to call them and warn them. As for the
jinn, Allah sent them to him by His might; He sent to him «(a group o f
jin n ... to listen to the Q u r’an. When they w ere close enough to hear
it, they said [to one another]: Listen attentively]* that is, they urged
one another to listen attentively.
^A nd when [the recitation] was overjj and they had understood it
and it had had an im pact on them ,
^they went back to their people to warn them ^ out o f sincerity towards
them and so as to establish the p ro o f o f A llah against them . Allah
m ade them a help to His M essenger (s|§ ) in spreading His call among
the jinn.

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^T hey said: O our people, verily w e have heard [recitation from]


a Book that has been revealed after M oosa^ because the B ook o f
M oosa was the basis for the G ospel, and it w as the main reference
for the Children o f Israel with regard to religious rulings; as for the
G ospel, it com plem ented and com pleted the Book o f M oosa, and
changed a few rulings.
^confirm ing that w hich cam e before it^ nam ely the Book that we
have m entioned confirm s that w hich cam e before it
^guiding to the truth^ that is, leading to w hat is sound and correct in
term s o f teachings and stories
^and to a straight path^ that is, it leads to Allah and to His paradise,
based on know ledge o f Allah and o f His religious rulings and rulings
that have to do with requital in the hereafter.
Having praised the Q u r’an and highlighted its sublim e status, they
then called their fellow jin n to believe in it, saying: *[0 our people,
respond to the one w ho is calling to Allah]? that is, the one w ho is not
calling to any but his Lord. He is not calling you for som e ulterior
m otive, or on the basis o f his ow n w him s and desires; rather he is
calling you to your Lord, so that He m ay reward you and remove from
you all evils and harms. Hence they said: *fso that Allah m ay forgive
you som e o f your sins and protect you from a painful punishment]?.
For if He protects you from the painful punishm ent, there can be
nothing after that but bliss. This is the rew ard o f those w ho respond
to the one w ho is calling to Allah.
^A nd w hoever does not respond to the one who is calling to Allah
can never escape [A llah’s punishm ent] on earthy for Allah has power
over all things, so no one can escape Him or overcom e Him.
^ an d besides Him he has no protectors. Such people are clearly
misguided]? and w hat m isguidance can be greater than that o f one
w hom the M essengers call, and the w arning reaches him on the
basis o f clear signs and abundant proof, but he turns aw ay and is too
arrogant to pay heed?

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0 0
46:33. Do they not see that Allah, Who created the heavens and the
earth, and was not wearied by their creation, is able to bring the
dead to life? Verily He has power over all things.

This offers evidence that A llah (^c) is able to bring them back to
life after death, by referring to som ething that is greater than that,
nam ely the fact that it is He W ho created the heavens and the earth,
despite their greatness and vastness, and the precision o f their creation,
w ithout that leading to Him feeling tired as a result o f creating them.
So how could He be incapable o f bringing you back to life after your
death, w hen He has pow er over all things?

0 0

46:34. On the day when those who disbelieved are brought before the
fire, [it will be said to them ]: Is this not the truth? They will say:
Yes indeed, by our Lord. He will say: Taste then the punishment
for having disbelieved.
46:35. So be patient, as the Messengers o f strong resolve were patient,
and do not seek to hasten [the punishment] for them. On the
day when they see the punishment o f which they were warned,
it will be as if they had not remained [in this world] for longer

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than an hour o f a day. This [Qur’an] is sufficient reminder. Will


any, then, be doomed but the rebellious and wicked people?

Here A llah (4c) tells us o f the terrible situation o f the disbelievers


w hen they will be brought to the fire that they disbelieved in; they
will be rebuked and it will be said to them: *fls this not the truth?]*
Here it is before you; you can see it with your ow n eyes.
^T hey will say: Yes indeed, by our Lord]) - they will acknow ledge
their sin and their lies (nam ely their denial o f the punishm ent) will
becom e apparent.
^H e w ill say: Taste then the punishm ent for having disbelieved]) that
is, an eternal, everlasting punishm ent, as your disbelief was a constant
and w ell-entrenched characteristic o f yours.
Then A llah (4c) instructs His M essenger ( ^ § ) to be patient in
putting up w ith the harm o f the disbelievers who opposed him, and to
keep calling them to Allah, em ulating the patience o f the M essengers
o f firm resolve and leaders o f humankind, men o f high ambition whose
patience w as im m ense and w hose faith was perfect, for they are most
deserving o f being taken as exam ples, to follow in their footsteps and
be guided by their beacon.
The P rophet ( i |§ ) obeyed the com m and o f his L ord, and w as
patient as no Prophet before him had ever been. His opponents united
against him and all strove hard to divert him from calling people to
Allah, doing their utmost to oppose him and fight him. But he persisted
in obeying the com m and o f A llah, and n ever w earied o f striving
against the enem ies o f Allah, bearing with patience w hatever harm
he faced, until A llah granted him victory in the land and caused His
religion to prevail over all others, and his Um m ah to prevail over all
other nations. M ay the blessings and peace o f A llah be upon him.
«fand do not seek to hasten [the punishm ent] for them ]) that is,
these disbelievers who seek to hasten the punishm ent for them selves,
for that stems from ignorance and foolishness on their part. Do not let

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their ignorance discourage you, and do not let what you see o f them
seeking to hasten the punishm ent lead you to pray to Allah against
them to hasten it for them , for everything that is com ing is im minent,
and when it com es ^ it will be as if they had not rem ained [in this
world] for longer than an hour o f a day^. So do not be upset by the
little enjoym ent that they have in this world, when they will end up
facing a terrible punishm ent.
This m ighty Q u r’an, in w hich We have explained the m essage
perfectly, is enough for you, and it is sufficient provision for you
during y o ur jo u rn ey to the hereafter. W hat a good provision it is,
that will help you to reach the realm o f jo y and protect you from the
painful punishm ent. It is the best provision that A llah has granted to
people, and the greatest blessing that He has bestow ed upon them.
^W ill any, then, be doomed)? to punishm ent ^but the rebellious
and wicked people?)? That is, those in w hom there is nothing good,
for they refused to obey their Lord, and they did not accept the truth
that the M essengers brought to them. Allah warned them and left them
with no excuse, but they persisted in their rejection and disbelief. We
ask Allah to protect us.

T his is the end o f the com m entary on Soorat al-A hqaf.


A ll praise and thanks are for A llah, and m ay the b lessin g s and
peace o f A llah be upon Prophet M uham m ad (*^g), his fam ily, and
his C om panions abundantly until the D ay o f Judgem ent.

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47.
Soorat M uham m ad
(Madam)

In the name o f Allah,


the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful

0 0

47:1. Those who disbelieve and bar others from the path o f Allah, He
will cause their deeds to come to naught.
47:2. Those who believe and do righteous deeds, and believe in that
which was sent down to Muhammad - for it is the truth from
their Lord - He will absolve them o f their bad deeds and rectify
their condition.
47:3. That is because those who disbelieve follow falsehood and those
who believe follow the truth from their Lord. Thus does Allah
set forth for humankind their comparisons.

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These verses include m ention o f the rew ard o f the believers and
the punishm ent o f the sinners, the reason for that, and the call to
hum ankind to learn lessons from that. Allah says:
^ T h o se w ho d isbelieve and bar others from the path o f Allah)? -
this refers to the leaders o f d isbelief and m isguidance, who com bine
d isb elief in Allah and His signs with barring them selves and others
from the path o f Allah, w hich m eans believing in and follow ing that
to which the M essengers called.
^He)? nam ely A llah «fwill cause their deeds to com e to naught)?
that is, He w ill render them invalid and cause their doom because
o f them. This includes their efforts to oppose the truth and the close
friends o f Allah. Allah will cause their schem es to backfire, so they
w ill not attain any o f their goals. As for the deeds for w hich they
hoped to be rew arded, A llah will cause them to com e to naught. The
reason for that is that they follow ed falsehood. That includes every
effort that is not m ade for the sake o f A llah, such as w orshipping
idols and im ages, and efforts that are put into supporting falsehood,
because such aim s are invalid, and any deeds done for their sake are
also invalid.
As for ^ T h o se w ho b eliev e ^ in w hat A llah sent dow n to His
M essengers in general, and to M uham m ad ( j | | ) in particular,
fjand do righteous deeds)? by doing what is required o f duties towards
A llah and tow ards people, both obligatory and recom m ended,
«{He)? that is, Allah ^w ill absolve them o f their bad deeds^ both m inor
and major, and if their bad deeds are absolved, they will be safe from
punishm ent in this w orld and the hereafter
^and rectify their condition^ that is, He will rectify their religious
and w orldly affairs, rectify their hearts and deeds, and rectify all
their affairs. The reason for that is that they ^follow the truth from
their Lord)? w hich is contained in this m ighty Q u r’an, that com es
^from their Lord)? W ho has been caring for them by m eans o f what
He bestow s o f blessings, and m anaging their affairs by m eans o f His

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kindness, so He cares for them by guiding them to the path o f truth,


which they follow, and thus their affairs are rectified.
As their goal is connected to the truth, that is attributed to Allah
the Eternal, the M anifest Truth, their m eans o f achieving that is sound
and eternal, and the reward for that will be stored up for them.
*[Thus does A llah set forth for hum ankind their com parisons^ as
He explains to them w ho the good people and evil people are, and
gives for each a description by w hich they m ay be recognised and
distinguished from others,
^ ...s o that those who chose to perish [by choosing disbelief] m ight
do so after seeing clear evidence, and those who chose to live [by
choosing faith] m ight do so after seeing clear e v id e n c e ...^ (al-Anfal
8: 42)

47:4. When you meet the disbelievers [in battle], strike their necks
until, when you have thoroughly subdued them, then bind the
captives firmly - then after that [you may release them], either
as an act o f grace or in return for a ransom - until the war ends.
Thus [are you commanded]. If Allah had so willed, He could
have exacted retribution upon them [without you fighting], but
He [commands you to fight] in order to test some o f you by
means o f others. For those who are slain in Allah’s cause, He
will never allow their deeds to come to naught.
47:5. He will guide them and rectify their condition,

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47:6. and will admit them to paradise, which He has already made
known to them.

Here Allah (4g) says, guiding His slaves to that w hich is in their
best interests and supporting them against their enemies:
^W hen you m eet the disbelievers [in battle])? then be steadfast in
fighting them , and strike th eir necks, until you have thoroughly
subdued them , w eakened their resolve and broken their spirit. Then
w hen you have done that and you think it is m ore appropriate to
take prisoners than to kill, ^then bind the captives firmly)?. This is a
precaution lest the captives run away; if they are bound firmly, then
the M uslim s will be reassured that they will not flee, and will not
harm them.
Once they are your prisoners, then you have the choice between
doing an act o f grace towards them by letting them go without payment
o f a ransom , or ransom ing them by not releasing them until they have
bought their freedom , or their com panions have done so, or they are
exchanged for M uslim prisoners held by the enemy.
This should continue ^until the w ar ends)? that is, until there is
no m ore fighting, and you reach a peace deal or truce. F or every
situation there is a different attitude and different rulings. The rulings
m entioned in this verse have to do with situations o f war.
But som etim es there is no war, and if there is no w ar for som e
reason, then there is no fighting and no taking o f prisoners.
^Thus [are you com m anded])? that is, the ruling m entioned above
is for the purpose o f testing the believers by means o f the disbelievers,
and to m ake fortunes and victories alternate between them.
^ I f Allah had so willed, He could have exacted retribution upon them
[w ithout you fighting]^, for He has pow er over all things and is able
to never let the disbelievers be victorious over the M uslim s in any
place, until the M uslim s com pletely defeat them.

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t(but He [com m ands you to fight] in order to test som e o f you by


m eans o f others]? so that jihad will flourish and it will becom e clear
who is sincere and who is lying, and so that som e people will believe
sincerely on the basis o f understanding, not on the basis o f follow ing
the group that has the upper hand, for such faith is very weak and can
hardly survive trials and tests.
«(For those w ho are slain in A llah’s caused there is a great reward,
for they are the ones w ho fought those who they w ere com m anded
to fight, so that the word o f Allah m ay be supreme. Allah will never
let the deeds o f such people go to waste. In other words, He will not
let them com e to naught and be invalid; rather He will accept them,
cause their reward to grow, and show the outcom e o f their deeds in
this w orld and the hereafter.
«[He will guide them]? to follow the path that leads to paradise
^and rectify their condition]? that is, their condition, their affairs and
their reward will all be complete and sound, with no stress and nothing
to spoil it in any way whatsoever.
^and will adm it them to paradise, w hich He has already m ade
known to them]? that is, He m ade it know n first o f all to m ake them
long for it; He described it to them and told them the deeds that lead
to it, one o f which is fighting in His cause, and He enabled them to
do w hat He com m anded and urged them to do. Then w hen they enter
paradise, He will show them their dw ellings and what they contain
o f eternal bliss and sound living.

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47:7. O you who believe, if you help Allah’s cause, He will help you
and steady your footsteps.
47:8. As for those who disbelieve, how wretched they are. Allah will
cause their deeds to come to naught.
47:9. That is because they resent that which Allah has sent down, so
He will cause their deeds to come to nothing.

This is a com m and from Allah G$g) to the believers, instructing


them to support His cause by adhering to His religion, calling others
to Him, striving against His enem ies, seeking thereby the pleasure o f
Allah. If they do that, Allah will help them and steady their footsteps.
In other words, He will instil in their hearts patience, reassurance and
steadfastness, He will give them physical endurance and help them
against their enemies.
T his is a prom ise from O ne W ho is generous and true in His
prom ise, th at w hoever supports His cause in w ord and deed, his
Lord will support him and grant him the m eans o f victory, such as
steadfastness and the like.
As for those who disbelieve in their Lord and support falsehood,
they are in a w retched state; that is, their affairs are in decline and
doom ed to failure.
^A llah will cause their deeds to com e to naught^ that is, He will
render invalid their efforts to plot against the truth, so their schem es
will backfire on them , and the deeds which they claim to do for the
sake o f Allah will com e to naught.
That m isguidance and w retchedness is for those w ho disbelieve,
because «[they resent that w hich Allah has sent d ow n^ o f the Q u r’an,
which A llah sent down to show people the path o f righteousness and
prosperity. But they did not accept it; rather they hated it and resented
it, ^so He will cause their deeds to com e to nothing^.

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Soorat M uhammad (10-U) | 185

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47:10. Have they not travelled in the land and seen what was the fate
o f those who came before them? Allah destroyed them utterly,
and a similar fate awaits those who disbelieve.
47:11. That is because Allah is the Protector o f those who believe,
whereas the disbelievers have no protector.

T hat is, have these people w ho reject the M essenger («i§) not
travelled <fand seen w hat w as the fate o f those w ho cam e before
them?)* For they w ill not find that anything befell them but the worst
o f fates. W herever they turn, right or left, they will find around them
people who perished and were doom ed and eradicated because o f their
rejection o f the truth and their disbelief. So they becam e lifeless, and
Allah destroyed their property and hom es around them ; in fact He
destroyed their efforts and plots. The disbelievers in every tim e and
place will have sim ilar bad consequences and terrible punishm ents.
As for the believers, Allah (4c) will save them from punishm ent
and bestow upon them a great reward.
^T hat is because A llah is the Protector o f those who believe)*, so
He cares for them and show s them mercy, bringing them forth from
the depths o f darkness to light, rew arding them and supporting them
H im self
^w hereas the disbelievers)* w ho disbelieve in Allah (■$£) and deprive
them selves o f divine protection and m ercy
^have no protector)* to guide them to the paths o f peace or save them
from the w rath and punishm ent o f Allah. In fact their protectors are
the false gods; from light they will lead them forth into the depths o f

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darkness. They will be inhabitants o f the fire; they will abide therein
forever (cf 2: 257).

c.t
47:12. Verily Allah will admit those who believe and do righteous
deeds to gardens through which rivers flow. As for those who
disbelieve, they are taking their pleasure [in this world] and they
eat as cattle eat; the fire will be their abode.

Having stated that He is the protector o f the believers, Allah (4c)


now tells us w hat will happen to them in the hereafter, o f adm ittance
to gardens through w hich rivers flow, w hich irrigate those verdant
gardens and beautiful trees that bear all kinds o f delicious fruit.
Having stated that the disbelievers have no protector, Allah now
tells us that they are left to their own devices, so they do not have any
qualities o f dignity or hum anity; rather they have sunk to the level
o f cattle that possess no reason or virtue, and all they care about and
seek is enjoym ent o f worldly pleasures and desires. So you see that
all their thoughts and activities are focused on such m atters, and do
not go beyond them to that in which there could be some goodness
and happiness. Hence the fire will be their abode; that is, it is prepared
for them and they will never leave it, and their punishm ent will never
be alleviated.

(\r :.u>t;j y * )

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47:13. How many cities there were, that were more powerful than your
city which has expelled you. Yet We destroyed them and there
was none to help them.

That is, how m any cities o f the disbelievers there w ere that w ere
m ore pow erful than your city in term s o f w ealth, sons, helpers,
buildings and technology.
^Yet We destroyed them)? w hen they rejected O ur M essengers, and
w hen exhortation proved to be o f no avail in their case. And there
w as none to help them ; their strength did not avail them at all against
the punishm ent o f Allah.
So how about these weak people, the people o f your city, when
they expelled you from your hom eland, rejected you and opposed
you at the time when you are the best o f the M essengers, the best o f
the first and the last?
Are they not more deserving than others o f doom and punishm ent,
were it not for the fact that Allah sent His M essenger (-^§) to show
m ercy towards every disbeliever and not be hasty (in seeking their
punishm ent)?

0 0

47:14. Is one who possesses clear proof from his Lord like one whose
evil deeds are made fair-seeming to him or those who follow
their own whims and desires?

That is, they are not equal. O ne w ho clearly understands his


religion and acts upon it by learning about the truth and following it,
hoping for what Allah has prom ised to those who follow the truth, is

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not like one w ho is spiritually blind and has rejected the truth, gone
astray and follow ed his whim s and desires, w ith no guidance from
Allah, yet he thinks that w hat he is follow ing is true. How great is
the difference betw een the two groups, the follow ers o f truth and the
follow ers o f m isguidance!

47:15. The likeness o f paradise, which the righteous are promised, [is
that o f a garden] in which there are rivers o f water forever fresh;
rivers o f milk o f which the taste never changes; rivers o f wine,
delightful to those who drink it; and rivers o f honey, pure and
clear. There they will have all kinds o f fruit and forgiveness
from their Lord. Can they be like those who will abide forever
in the fire and be given scalding water to drink that will tear
their intestines?

T hat is, the likeness o f paradise, w hich Allah has prepared for His
slaves who feared His w rath and sought His pleasure, is a beautiful
likeness.
«fin which there are rivers o f w ater forever fresh^ that is, it never
changes, becom es stagnant, develops a foul sm ell, or becom es bitter
or murky. R ather it is the freshest and purest o f water, with the best
fragrance and m ost delicious taste.
^rivers o f m ilk o f which the taste never changes^ by turning sour
or otherw ise

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^rivers o f wine, delightful to those w ho drink it)* that is, the one who
drinks it enjoys it very much. It is not like the wine o f this w orld that
tastes bad, causes headache and m akes people lose their minds,
^and rivers o f honey, pure and clear)*, free o f wax and other dirt.
^T here they will have all kinds o f fruit)* such as dates, grapes,
apples, pom egranates, citrons, figs and other fruits that have no equal
in this world. They will have attained all that they w anted and that
was dear to them.
^an d forgiveness from their Lord)* by m eans o f w hich all that
they fear w ill be kept aw ay from them . A re they better, o r those
who will abide forever in the fire, with its intense heat and m ultiple
punishm ents, w here they will ^b e given scalding^ that is, intensely
hot ^w ater to drink that will tear their intestines^?
G lory be to the O ne W ho has d ifferen tiated betw een the tw o
abodes, the tw o recom penses, the tw o types o f people and the two
types o f deeds.

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47:16. Among them are some who listen to you [O Muhammad], but
when they leave your presence, they say to those who have
been given knowledge: What did he say just now? These are
the ones whose hearts Allah has sealed up and they follow their
own whims and desires.
47:17. But as for those who follow guidance, Allah increases them in
guidance and instils in them righteousness.

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H ere A llah tells us that am ong the hypocrites ((are som e w ho


listen to you [O M uham m ad] that is, they listen to what you say,
but it is not by way o f accepting and following; rather they are not
really paying attention. Hence Allah says: ((but w hen they leave your
presence, they say to those who have been given know ledge^, asking
about what you said and what they heard, that they had no real interest
in: (-(What did he say ju st now?jj
This is a criticism o f them, for if they had really been eager to attain
good, they w ould have listened attentively and with understanding,
and they would have complied with it. But their attitude is the opposite
o f that, hence Allah says: ((These are the ones w hose hearts A llah has
sealed upp that is, He has barred to them the goodness that could have
reached their hearts, because they followed their whim s and desires
and had no inclination except tow ards falsehood.
Then He describes those who follow guidance: ((But as for those
w ho follow guidance]* by believing, subm itting and seeking that
which is pleasing to Allah
((Allah increases them in guidance)*, in appreciation o f their doing that
((and instils in them righteousness!* that is, He enables them to do
good and protects them from evil. Therefore He mentions two rewards
for those who are guided: beneficial know ledge and righteous deeds.

47:18. What are they waiting for, but for the Hour to come upon them
suddenly? Its portents have already appeared, so what good will
it do them to pay heed when it has actually come upon them?

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That is, are these disbelievers w aiting for anything ^but for the
Hour to com e upon them suddenly^, w ithout them realising?
^Its portents^ that is, its signs which indicate that it is at hand «(have
already appeared^.
^ so w hat good will it do them to pay h e e d ^ that is, w hen the
Hour com es and their lifespan is over, how can they pay heed to it
and m end their w ays? It will be too late for that; the tim e for paying
heed will be over, and their lives w ill have been long enough for
anyone who m ight reflect and pay heed to do so, as the w am er did
indeed com e to them.
T his verse urges people to be prepared before death com es
suddenly, for a person’s death is the beginning o f the H our for him.

0 0

47:19. Know, then, that there is no god but Allah, and ask forgiveness
for your sins and for [the sins of] believing men and women, for
Allah knows your movements [during the day] and your places
o f rest [at night].

With regard to knowledge, it is essential to affirm it in the heart and


understand properly what is required o f knowledge, and the perfection
th ereo f is to act in accordance with it.
This know ledge that A llah enjoins - nam ely know ledge o f the
oneness o f Allah - is an individual obligation upon every hum an, and
is not w aived for anyone, no m atter who he is. R ather each individual
is obliged to know that, and the way to know that there is no god but
He is by doing the following:

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1- The first and greatest w ay is reflecting upon His nam es and


attrib u tes, and H is actions th at h ig h lig h t His perfectio n ,
greatness and majesty. That com pels one to strive o n e’s utm ost
in devotion to Him and in w orshipping the Lord W ho possesses
perfect nam es and attributes and to W hom belong all praise,
glory, m ajesty and beauty.
2- K now ing that He is the only C reator and controller. Thus one
may know that He is the only One W ho is deserving o f devotion.
3- K now ing that H e alone bestow s blessings both v isible and
hidden, spiritual and worldly. That makes one’s heart be attached
to Him, love Him and be devoted to Him alone, with no partner
or associate.
4- W hat w e see and hear o f the great rew ard for His close friends
who affirm His oneness, o f divine support and blessings in this
world; and the punishment for His enemies who associate others
w ith Him. This m akes one realise that He alone is deserving
o f all worship.
5- U n d erstan d in g the n atu re o f the idols and rivals that are
w orshipped alongside Allah and taken as gods, for they are
helpless in all aspects, inherently needy and have no pow er to
benefit or harm them selves or their w orshippers, or to cause
death, give life or resurrect. They do not support those who
w orship them , and they do not benefit them in the slightest
by bringing good or w arding o ff evil. K now ing that leads to
knowing that there is no god but Allah, and that all gods besides
Him are false.
6- The Books o f Allah are all agreed on that and they all stated it.
7- T he elite o f creation, w ho are the m ost perfect o f people in
attitude, m ature thin kin g , w isdom , sound ju d g e m e n t and
know ledge - nam ely the M essengers, P rophets and devout
scholars - have testified that Allah is one.

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8- A llah has established proofs in the universe and in people


them selves that offer the greatest p ro o f o f H is oneness and
point towards that fact, because o f w hat He has instilled in them
o f precise creation and w hat they reflect o f brilliant w isdom
and am azing design.
T hese are the w ays th rough w hich A llah calls p eople to the
m essage o f la ilaha ilia A llah, w hich H e highlights repeatedly in
His Book. W hen a person ponders som e o f them , he w ill inevitably
develop certain faith and know ledge o f that. So how about if he
studies all o f them , and they all point to His oneness and agree on
that? The proofs o f divine oneness com e from all directions, then
faith and know ledge o f that becom e deeply rooted in the heart, so
that they are like firm m ountains that cannot be shaken by doubts or
illusions, and they only increase and grow the m ore one com es across
false ideas and specious argum ents. M oreover, there is the greatest
evidence and the m ost im portant m atter - w hich is pondering this
m ighty Q u r’an and reflecting on its verses - because it is the main
gatew ay to learning about divine oneness, and through it one m ay
learn w hat it says in detail and in general term s, that one cannot learn
from any other source.
tfand ask forgiveness for your sins j» that is, ask Allah for forgiveness
for your sins, by taking m easures that lead to forgiveness, such as
repentance, praying for forgiveness, doing good deeds that erase sin,
refraining from sin and forgiving others for any w rongs they have
done to you.
<|andj» seek forgiveness also ^ fo r [the sins of] believing m en and
w om en^ for they - because o f their faith - have rights over every
M uslim m an and woman.
O ne o f those rights is that they should pray for them and seek
forgiveness for their sins. I f it is the case that the Prophet ( j | | ) is
instructed to pray for them , w hich m eans asking for their sin to be

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rem oved and for them to be protected from the punishm ent thereof,
it is im plied that he is to show sincerity tow ards them , love good for
them as he loves it for him self, hate evil for them as he hates it for
himself, enjoin them to do that which is good for them and forbid them
to do that w hich is harm ful to them , overlook their shortcom ings and
faults, and be keen that they should be united and in harmony, and
that all grudges betw een them should be rem oved that could lead to
enm ity and division that would increase them in sin.
«ffor Allah know s your m ovem ents [during the d ay ]|j and your
com ings and goings
«[and your places o f rest [at night] j? w here you settle, for He knows
all about you and your m ovem ents, and He will requite you for that
in full.

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47:20. Those who believe say: If only a soorah were to be sent down
[instructing us to fight]! But when an unambiguous soorah is
sent down, in which fighting is mentioned, you see those in
whose hearts is a disease staring fixedly at you like one who is
about to die. So woe to them!
47:21. It is more appropriate for them to show obedience and speak
honourable words. Once the m atter is resolved upon [and
fighting becomes obligatory], then if they are true to Allah,
that will be better for them.

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47:22. Then is it to be expected o f you, if you turn away, that you will
spread m ischief in the land and sever your ties o f kinship?
47:23. These are the ones whom Allah has cursed, and has made them
deaf and has blinded their eyes.

^T hose who believe say)* in haste, show ing eagerness to com ply
with tough and difficult com m ands: ^ I f only a soorah w ere to be sent
down [instructing us to fight]!)*
^B u t when an unam biguous soorah is sent down)*, com pliance
with w hich is binding,
«(in which fighting is m entioned^, which is the m ost difficult thing for
people, those who are weak in faith cannot comply with the command.
Hence Allah says: ^you see those in w hose hearts is a disease staring
fixedly at you like one who is about to die)* because they hate it and
it is so difficult for them.
This is like the verse in which A llah (4s) says:
^H ave you not seen those to whom it was said: Restrain your hands
[from fighting], establish prayer and give zakah? B ut then w hen
fighting was ordained for them , som e o f them feared m en as m uch
as they feared A llah or even m o re ...)* (an-Nisa’4: 77)
Then Allah (4c) urges them to do that w hich is m ore appropriate
to their situation, as He says:
^ It is m ore ap p ropriate for them to show obedience and speak
honourable words)* that is, it is m ore appropriate for them to com ply
with the com m and and focus on what they are required to do now,
and not to dem and that there be prescribed for them that which is too
difficult for them. They should rejoice in the fact that Allah (4g) is
letting them be and show ing kindness to them.
^ O n c e the m atter is reso lv ed upon [and fig h tin g becom es
obligatory])* that is, once the issue becom es serious and the com m and

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becom es binding, then in that situation, if they are true to Allah by


seeking His help and doing their utmost to comply with His commands,
«fthat w ill be better for them)* than dem anding a verse w ith the
com m and to fight. That is for several reasons:
• The individual is helpless in all w ays and has no power, unless
Allah helps him. So he should not ask for more than he is obliged
to do at present.
• If he starts thinking too m uch o f deeds to do in the future,
that w ill lead to his resolve becom ing w eakened with regard to
w hat he has to do now and in the future. As for the present, his
resolve will be w eakened because his focus has been m oved
to som ething else, and resolve is connected to focus. As for
w hat he w ants to do in the future, the tim e for that deed will
not com e before he loses resolve and m otivation, and he will
not be able to do it.
• The one who thinks o f what he w ants to do in the future at the
tim e w hen he is too lazy to do w hat he m ust do at present is
like som eone who is helpless yet still thinks that he will be able
to do w hatever tasks he will face in the future. Therefore he is
m ore likely to fail and not do w hat he w anted to do and thought
o f doing. W hat he should do is focus his thoughts and energy
on w hat is to be done now, and do it to the best o f his ability.
Then after that, when he is faced w ith a new task, he will be
able to do it with energy and m otivation, and with proper focus,
seeking the help o f his Lord. Such a person is m ore deserving
o f divine help and support in all his affairs.
Then Allah (*}c) mentions the situation o f one who turns away from
obeying his Lord, stating that he is not turning to anything good; rather
he is turning to som ething bad, as He says: «|Then is it to be expected
o f you, if you turn away, that you will spread m ischief in the land and
sever your ties o f kinship?)* T hat is, there are two scenarios: either to
adhere to obedience to Allah and com ply w ith His com m ands, w hich

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will lead to goodness, righteousness and success; or to turn away from


that and fail to obey Allah, after w hich there is nothing but spreading
m ischief in the land by com m itting sins and severing ties o f kinship.
^ T h e se ^ nam ely the ones w ho spread m ischief in the land and
sever ties o f kinship
^are the ones whom Allah has cursed^ by casting them far aw ay from
His mercy, and they are subjected to the wrath o f Allah.
^an d has m ade them d e a f and has blinded their ey e s^ that is, He
has caused them not to hear or see that w hich will benefit them. So
they have ears, but they do not hear in the sense o f obedience and
acceptance; rather they hear in the sense that the p ro o f o f A llah is
established against them. A nd they have eyes, but they do not see the
lessons and signs, and they do not pay attention to p ro o f and clear
evidence.

(Y&. o

47:24. Will they not then ponder on the Q ur’an, or are there locks on
their hearts?

That is, why do these people w ho turn aw ay not ponder the Book
o f Allah and reflect upon it properly, for if they did that, it would guide
them to all that is good and warn them against all that is evil, and it
w ould fill their hearts w ith faith and certainty, enable them to attain
sublime goals and great reward, and explain to them the path that leads
to A llah and to His paradise. It w ould show them w hat w ould help
them to attain that and w hat would hinder them from it, and it w ould
highlight the path that leads to punishm ent and w hat to bew are of. It
w ould tell them about their Lord, His nam es and attributes, and His
kindness; it w ould m ake them long for the great rew ard, and w ould
alert them to the dire punishm ent.

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^ o r are there locks on their hearts?]* That is, are their hearts closed
on all the evil that they contain, so that nothing good can enter them ?
This is how they really are.

47:25. Verily those who turn back to disbelief after guidance has
become clear to them, Shaytan has made [their evil deeds] fair-
seeming to them and has deceived them with false hopes o f a
long life.
47:26. That is because they [the hypocrites] said to those who hate
what Allah has revealed: We will cooperate with you in some
matters. But Allah knows their secret dealings.
47:27. How then will they fare when the angels take their souls in
death, striking their faces and backs?
47:28. That is because they pursue that which angers Allah, and they
hate that which pleases Him; so He will cause their deeds to
come to nothing.

Here Allah tells us about the situation o f those who apostatise from
right guidance and faith, and turn back to m isguidance and disbelief.
They do not do that on the basis o f evidence or proof that led them to
that conclusion; rather it is m isguidance from their enemy the Shaytan,
who m ade that fair-seem ing to them and prom pted them to do it.

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^[Shaytan] m akes prom ises to them and fills them with false hopes;
but Shaytan m akes prom ises to them only in order to deceive them .^
(an-Nisa 4: 120)
That is because guidance becam e clear to them , but they show ed
no interest in it and rejected it, *(That is because they [the hypocrites]
said to those who hate w hat A llah has revealed^ and showed open
enm ity towards Allah and His M essenger ($&): *[We will cooperate
with you in some matters)* that is, in those m atters that suited their
whim s and desires. Therefore A llah punished them by causing them
to go astray and m aking them persist in that w hich w ould lead to their
eternal doom and everlasting punishm ent.
^ B u t A llah know s their secret dealings)* therefore He exposed
them and disclosed their secrets to His believing slaves, lest they be
deceived by them.
^H ow then)* do you think their terrifying situation will be ^w hen
the angels^ w hose task is to take people’s souls ^take their souls in
death, striking their faces and backs)* with rods o f iron?
^That)* p u n ish m en t w hich they deserv e and w ill be given
is ^ b ecau se they pursue that w hich angers Allah)* o f all kinds o f
disbelief, evildoing and sin.
^and they hate that w hich pleases Him)* so they have no desire for
that which w ould bring them closer to Him.
^so He will cause their deeds to com e to nothing)* that is, He will
render them invalid and cause them to be lost. This is in contrast to
those who pursue that which pleases Allah and hate that w hich angers
Him; He will absolve their bad deeds and m ultiply their reward.

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(r\-Y <t

47:29. Do those in whose hearts is a disease think that Allah will never
bring their malice to light?
47:30. If We so willed, We could show them to you, so that you would
recognise them by their marks. But you will surely recognise
them by the tone o f their speech. And Allah knows all that you
do.
47:31. We will certainly test you so that We may make known those
among you who strive [in Allah’s cause] and are steadfast, and
We will expose your deeds.

^D o those in whose hearts is a disease)* caused by doubt or desires,


to the extent that the heart becom es unhealthy and unbalanced, think
that A llah will not bring to light w hat their hearts contain o f grudges
and enm ity tow ards Islam and its people? T his is the notion that
is incom patible w ith the w isdom o f A llah, for He will inevitably
distinguish betw een those w ho are sincere and those w ho are lying,
by m eans o f tests and trials; w hoever rem ains steadfast and persists
in his faith when faced with such trials is truly a believer.
But w h oever turns on his heels and show s no patience in the
face o f trials, or w hen subjected to a test, will panic, his faith will
grow w eak and he will show w hat his heart contains o f grudges and
hypocrisy. This is w hat is dictated by divine w isdom , even though
Allah 0 s ) says: «flf We so w illed, We could show them to you, so
that you w ould recognise them by their marks)* that is, their signs
which are like m arks on their faces.
^B ut you will surely recognise them by the tone o f their speech)*
that is, w hat is in their hearts will inevitably appear through slips
o f the tongue, for w hat people say reflects what is in their hearts o f
good and evil.

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^A nd A llah know s all that you d o ^ and will requite you for your
deeds.
Then A llah m entions the great test with w hich He tests his slaves,
nam ely jih ad in the cause o f Allah, as He says:
<|We w ill certainly test you)? that is, We w ill test your faith and
patience
«fso that We may make known those am ong you who strive [in A llah’s
cause] and are steadfast, and We will expose your deeds)?. W hoever
com plies w ith the com m and o f A llah and strives in H is cause to
support His religion and m ake His w ord suprem e is a true believer;
w hoever is reluctant to do that, it is due to a shortcom ing in his faith.

47:32. Verily those who disbelieve and bar others from the path o f
Allah, and oppose the Messenger after guidance has become
clear to them, not the least harm will they do to Allah, and He
will cause their deeds to come to nothing.

T his is a stem w arning to those w ho com bine all kinds o f evil,


nam ely d isb elief in A llah and barring people from the path o f Allah
w hich He has set out for people to reach Him.
^and oppose the M essenger after guidance has becom e clear to them ^
that is, they stubbornly and deliberately go against him, not on the
basis o f ignorance and m isguidance.
«[not the least harm will they do to Allah)* and they will not detract
from His sovereignty.
^ an d He w ill cause th eir deeds to com e to nothing)? that is, the
efforts they m ade to support falsehood w ill not lead to anything

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but failure and loss, and their deeds for which they hoped to attain
reward will not be accepted, because they failed to fulfil the necessary
conditions.

O *

(rr :ju *
47:33. O you who believe, obey Allah and obey the Messenger, and
do not let your deeds go in vain.

Here A llah instructs the believers to do som ething that is essential


to their w ell-being, w hereby they m ay attain happiness in this world
and the hereafter, w hich is to obey Him and obey His M essenger ( ^ )
with regard to fundam ental and m inor m atters o f religion. O bedience
m eans com plying with com m ands and heeding the prohibitions, in
the m anner enjoined, with sincerity, and follow ing in a perfect and
precise manner.
^and do not let your deeds go in vain^. This includes a prohibition
on rendering deeds invalid after doing them, by doing things that spoil
them, such as rem inding people o f favours, self-adm iration, pride and
seeking a good reputation, and com m itting sins that spoil good deeds
and cancel out the reward thereof. It also includes a prohibition on
spoiling good deeds w hilst doing them , by giving them up or doing
som ething that renders them invalid.
T hings that render prayer, fasting, Hajj and so on invalid are
included in that and are forbidden. The f u q a h a ' quote this verse as
evidence for it being forbidden to interrupt an obligatory prayer, and
for it being disliked to interrupt a supererogatory prayer, for no good
reason.

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B ecause A llah has forbidden rendering good deeds invalid, He


enjoins doing them properly, in a com plete and perfect manner, by
having know ledge and acting upon it.

“jy-

(ro-n
47:34. Verily those who disbelieve and bar others from the path o f
Allah, and die as disbelievers, Allah will never forgive them.
47:35. Do not falter and call for peace, for you will overcome. Allah is
with you and will never detract from the reward o f your good
deeds.

These verses and the verse in al-Baqarah:


^ . . .And if any o f you turn back from their faith and die as disbelievers,
their deeds will com e to nothing in this world and in the hereafter... ^
(al-Baqarah 2: 217)
- m ake specific every text that speaks in general term s o f deeds
being nullified by disbelief, and limit it to the case o f those w ho die
in a state o f disbelief. Allah says here:
^Verily those w ho disbelieve^ in Allah, His angels, His Books,
His M essengers and the Last Day
^and bar others from the path o f A llah ^ by m aking them disinclined
towards the truth and calling them to falsehood, m aking it fair-seeming
to them,
«fand die as disbelievers^ w ithout repenting therefrom
^ Allah will never forgive themj^ by means o f intercession or otherwise,
because the punishm ent will have becom e inevitable for them , they

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will have m issed out on rew ard, they will deserve to abide forever
in hell, and the m ercy o f the M ost M erciful, O ft-Forgiving will be
denied to them.
W hat the verse m eans is that if they repent from that before they
die, then Allah will forgive them, have mercy on them and adm it them
to paradise, even if they spent their entire lives disbelieving in Him,
barring others from His path and com m itting sins.
G lory be to the One W ho has opened the gates o f m ercy to His
slaves, and has not barred them to anyone, so long as he is still alive
and able to repent.
Glory be to the M ost Forbearing W ho does not hasten to punish
those w ho disobey H im ; rather He grants them w ell-being and
provision, as if they had not disobeyed Him , despite the fact that He
has pow er over them.
Then Allah says: ^D o not falter^ that is, do not grow weak and
lose your energy to fight or let fear overtake you. R ather be patient
and steadfast, m ake firm your resolve to fight and stand firm, seeking
the pleasure o f your Lord, in sincerity tow ards Islam , and so as to
annoy the Shaytan.
Do not call for peace and give up the fight betw een you and your
enem ies in pursuit o f com fort, «(for you will overcom e. A llah is with
you and will never detract from the rew ard o f your good deeds)*.
The follow ing three things should m otivate one to rem ain patient
and not feel w eak, for they will overcome:
1- All m eans o f victory are available and they have a true prom ise
from Allah. Usually people do not falter unless they feel inferior
to others, and are w eaker in term s o f num bers, equipm ent and
psychological and physical strength.
2- Allah is with them , for they are believers, and Allah is with the
believers, giving them His help and support. That should give
them strength o f heart and courage against their enemies.

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3- Allah will not detract from the rew ard o f their good deeds in
the slightest; rather He will rew ard them in full and give them
more by His grace, especially for the act o f worship o f jihad, for
the rew ard o f spending in jih ad will be m ultiplied up to seven
hundredfold, up to m any tim es m ore than that. A llah (■}£) says:
^ . . .That is because w henever they suffer any thirst, w eariness
or hunger in A llah ’s cause, or they take any step that angers
the disbelievers, or inflict any loss on an enemy, a righteous
deed is recorded to th eir cred it thereby. F or A llah w ill not
cause the rew ard o f those who do good to be lost. N or do they
spend anything [for A llah’s cause], small or great, or cross any
valley, but it is recorded to their credit, so that Allah may reward
them in accordance w ith the best o f their deeds. ^ (at-Tawbah 9:
120 - 121)

I f a person know s that A llah ($s) will not cause his deeds and
efforts to be lost, that w ill m otivate him and m ake him strive his
utm ost to do that which will lead to reward. So how about if all these
three factors are put together? That w ill m otivate him com pletely.
This is an exam ple o f A llah encouraging and m otivating His slaves,
and strengthening their resolve to persist on the path that will lead to
their righteousness and success.

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47:36. The life o f this world is nothing but play and a distraction. But
if you believe and guard against evil, He will grant you your
rewards. He does not ask you for all your wealth.
47:37. If He were to ask you for it and insist that you give it all, you
would covetously withhold, and that could lead to ill will.
47:38. O you who are being called to spend in Allah’s cause, among you
are some who are miserly, but the one who is miserly is miserly
only towards his own self. Allah is Self-Sufficient, whereas it is
you who are in need o f Him. If you turn away, He will replace
you with another people, who will not be like you.

This passage is aim ed at m aking His slaves lose interest in the


life o f this world, by telling them o f its reality, for it is no m ore than
play and distraction. It is play in a physical sense and a distraction
to their hearts and m inds, for a person keeps being distracted by his
wealth, children and w ell-being, and by pleasures such as physical
pleasure, food, drink, houses, gatherings, showing o ff and leadership,
playing and doing all kinds o f deeds that are o f no benefit; rather
he is w asting his tim e in idleness, negligence and heedlessness,
until his tim e in this w orld com es to an end and he is faced w ith
his death.
Then suddenly all these things disappear and leave him, w ithout
him having g ain ed anything from them . R ather he w ill realise
his loss and deprivation, and his punishm ent w ill be presented to
him . T his dictates that the w ise m an should show no interest in
worldly gain, have no desire for it, and pay no attention to worldly
matters.
R ather w hat he should do is pay attention to w hat is m entioned
here: ^ B u t if you believe and guard against evil)* by believing in
Allah, His angels, His Books, His M essengers and the Last Day, and
you fear Him, which is one o f the requirem ents o f faith, and you strive
consistently to please Him and avoid disobeying Him. This is what

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will benefit a person and this is w hat he should com pete in and focus
all his am bition and efforts on seeking. This is w hat Allah wants from
His slaves, out o f com passion and kindness tow ards them , so that He
m ay rew ard them abundantly. H ence H e says: ^ B u t if you believe
and guard against evil, He will grant you your rewards. He does not
ask you for all your wealth)* that is, He does not w ant to im pose on
you that which is too difficult for you and will cause you hardship,
by taking all o f your w ealth and leaving you w ith nothing, or taking
so m uch o f it that it will cause you harm. Hence He says:
^ I f He w ere to ask you for it and insist that you give it all, you
w ould covetously w ithhold, and that could lead to ill will)* that is,
developing resentm ent, if He w ere to ask you to give w hat you do
not w ant to give.
The evidence for the fact that if Allah were to ask you to give your
wealth and insist that you give it all, you w ould withhold it, is the fact
that you «fare being called to spend in A llah ’s cause)* in this manner,
w hich is in your religious and w orldly interests, but «famong you are
some who are miserly)*, so how about if He w ere to ask you for all
o f your wealth, for a purpose o f w hich you cannot see the im mediate
benefits? Is it not m ore likely that you w ould refuse to give?
Then He says: «fbut the one w ho is m iserly is m iserly only towards
his own self)* because he is depriving him self o f the reward o f Allah
(4c) and m issing out on much goodness, and he will never harm Allah
in the slightest by his refusal to spend.
For Allah is ^Self-Sufficient, w hereas it is you who are in need o f
H im ^ - you need Him at all tim es, in all your affairs.
^ I f you turn away)* from believing in A llah and doing w hat He
com m ands you to do, if He will replace you with another people, who
w ill not be like y o u ^ in turning aw ay; rather they will obey A llah
and His M essenger (}|§), and they will love Allah and His M essenger
( ^ ) , as A llah (4s) says elsew here:

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$ 0 you who believe, w hoever am ong you renounces his faith, A llah
will bring forth [in their stead] people whom He loves and who love
H im (al-Maidah 5: 54)

T his is the end o f the com m entary on Soorat M uhamm ad.


A ll praise and thanks are for A llah , and m ay the b lessin g s and
peace o f A llah be upon Prophet M uham m ad his fam ily, and
his C om panions abundantly until the D ay o f Judgem ent.

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48.
Soorat al-Fath
(Madani)

In the name o f Allah,


the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful

(T-t : ^ i J l - 4/ **^ U p U - il—• U»>^ eib.Xf._} <4He

48:1. Verily We have granted you [O Muhammad, in the Treaty o f


al-Hudaybiyah] a manifest victory ,23
48:2. so that Allah may forgive you your past and future sins, complete
His blessings upon you, and guide you on a straight path;

23 This refers to the Treaty of al-Hudaybiyah. In 6 AH, the Prophet (3l§) and
his Companions set out to perform ‘umrah, but were prevented by Quraysh
from reaching Makkah. The ensuing negotiations led to the Treaty of
al-Hudaybiyah, in which the Muslims agreed to return to Madinah without
performing ‘umrah, but would be allowed to come back and do so the
following year, and hostilities between the two sides would cease. The
Muslims initially objected to this treaty, as they felt that its terms were
unfair, but its ultimate consequences were good. The cessation of fighting
allowed people from both sides to talk and get to know one another, which
led to more people becoming Muslim.

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48:3. and so that Allah may bestow upon you mighty support.

The victory m entioned is the Treaty o f al-H udaybiyah, w hen the


polytheists barred the w ay to the M essenger o f A llah (J§ |) w hen he
cam e to do ‘umrah. It is a long story, w hich ended with their m aking
a treaty w ith the M essenger o f Allah ( * ||) , agreeing to a cessation o f
w ar between him and them for ten years; that he would do ‘um rah the
follow ing year; that w hoever w anted to join the treaty on the side o f
Q uraysh and jo in their alliance m ight do so, and w hoever w anted to
join the treaty on the side o f the M essenger o f Allah ( ^ ) m ight do so.
As a result o f that, once the people w ere safe from one another,
the opportunities for calling people to the religion o f Allah expanded,
and any believer in any place in those regions w as able to call people
to Islam.
A nyone who w anted to find out about w hat Islam really is, was
able to do so, and during that period the people entered the religion o f
A llah in crowds. Therefore Allah called it a victory and described it
as a m anifest - that is, clear and obvious - victory. That is because the
purpose o f conquering the lands o f the polytheists was to m ake the
religion o f Allah suprem e and cause the M uslim s to have the upper
hand. This happened as a result o f this victory, and Allah caused this
victory to lead to m any positive consequences.
^so that A llah m ay forgive you your past and future sins)? that
- and A llah know s best - is because o f w hat happened as a result
o f m any acts o f w orship and m any people becom ing M uslim , and
because o f w hat the Prophet ( j|§ ) had to put up with o f conditions
that no one could bear except the M essengers o f strong will. This is
one o f his greatest attributes and virtues, and that is why Allah forgave
him his past and future sins.
^ co m plete His blessings upon y o u ^ by m aking your religious
com m itm ent strong, causing you to prevail over your enem ies and
m aking your call go further afield

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^and guide you on a straight path)? by w hich you will attain eternal
happiness and success.
^ an d so that Allah m ay bestow upon you m ighty support)? that
is, strong support, because o f w hich Islam can n ever be shaken;
rather it will attain com plete victory and will suppress, hum iliate and
weaken the disbelievers, w hilst sparing the strength o f the M uslim s
and causing them to increase in num bers and their w ealth to grow.
T hen A llah m entions the consequences o f this victory for the
believers:

48:4. It is He Who sent down reassurance to the hearts o f the believers


so that they might increase in faith. To Allah belong the hosts
o f the heavens and the earth. And Allah is All-Knowing, Most
Wise.
48:5. So that He may admit the believing men and women to gardens
through which rivers flow, to abide therein forever, and absolve
them o f their bad deeds, and that, before Allah, is a great
triumph.
48:6. And so that He may punish the hypocrites, men and women,
and the polytheists, men and women, who harbour evil thoughts

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about Allah .24 An evil turn o f fortune will befall them; Allah is
angry with them and has cursed them; He has prepared hell for
them - an evil journey’s end.

Here A llah (*}£) tells us o f the blessing that He bestow ed upon


the believers w hen he sent down reassurance to their hearts, w hich
is peace o f m ind, tranquillity and steadfastness w hen faced w ith
d isco n certin g trials and difficult circum stances that m ake people
w orried, distract their thoughts and w eaken their resolve.
By His blessings to His slave in such circum stances He m akes him
steadfast, strengthens his resolve and gives him a sense o f peace, so
that he m ay m eet those difficulties with steadfastness and focus o f
m ind, and thus he will be prepared to com ply with the com m ands o f
Allah in such circumstances and thereby increase in faith and certainty.
W hen the M essenger o f Allah (jjj§) agreed on the deal between
him and the polytheists, on the basis o f those conditions w hich
appeared to be unfair to them , it seem ed to underm ine the status o f
the C om panions and appeared to be an insult such that people
can hardly tolerate. But when they bore it with patience and decided
to accept it, that increased them in faith.
tjTo Allah belong the hosts o f the heavens and the earth p that is, all
o f them are under His dom inion and control, so the polytheists should
not think that A llah will not support His religion and His Prophet
( } ||) . R ather Allah (4«) is All-K now ing, M ost W ise, and His wisdom
dictates that p eople’s fortunes should alternate and that the victory o f
the believers should som etim es be delayed until another time.
tjSo that He m ay adm it the believing m en and w om en to gardens
through which rivers flow, to abide therein forever, and absolve them

24 The hypocrites thought that w hen the Prophet ( 5 |§ ) and his C om panions
set out to perform ‘umrah, they w ould never return to M adinah, as the
p olyth eists w o u ld eradicate them and d isb e lie f w ou ld prevail over Islam.

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o f their bad deeds)?. F or this is the greatest thing that they could
achieve, to attain w hat they hope for by entering those gardens and
be protected from w hat they fear, by m eans o f the absolution o f their
bad deeds.
fjand thatp nam ely the rew ard o f the believers m entioned here
^before A llah, is a great triumph)?. This is w hat the believers gained
through that m anifest victory.
As for the hypocrites, m en and w om en, and the polytheists, men
and w om en, A llah punished them by m eans o f that and show ed
them that w hich caused them distress. F or th eir aim had been to
hum iliate the believers, and they thought ill o f Allah, supposing that
He w ould not support His religion or m ake His w ord suprem e, and
that the follow ers o f falsehood w ould gain the upper hand against
the followers o f truth. But Allah m ade their evil thoughts backfire on
them , and the evil turn o f fortune befell them in this world.
^A llah is angry with them)? because o f their opposition to Him
and His M essenger ( i|§ )
tfand has cursed them}» that is, He has cast them far aw ay from His
mercy, and «|He has prepared hell for them - an evil jo u rn e y ’s end)?.

o o

48:7. To Allah belong the hosts o f the heavens and the earth. And
Allah is Almighty, Most Wise.

Allah repeats the statem ent that to Him belongs the dom inion o f
the heavens and the earth, and all that they contain o f hosts, so that
people will know that it is He W ho honours and hum iliates, and it
is He W ho grants victory to His hosts who are attributed to Him, as
He says elsewhere:

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^A nd it is surely Our troops who will be the victors.]» (as-Saffat 37:173)


^A nd Allah is Alm ighty that is, strong, prevalent, subduer o f all
things. In addition to being Alm ighty and strong, He is also ^M ost
W isejj in His creation and control, and He controls things in a m anner
dictated by His perfect wisdom.

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48:8. Verily We have sent you [O Muhammad] as a witness, a bringer


o f glad tidings, and a wamer,
48:9. so that you [O people] may believe in Allah and His Messenger,
and support and honour him, and glorify Allah morning and
afternoon.

^Verily We have sent you [O M uham m ad] as a witness]} to your


Um m ah o f all that they do, both good and evil, and as a witness o f
w hat is said and various issues, true and false, to testify to A llah’s
oneness and perfection in all ways.
«|a bringer o f glad tidings]} to those who obey you and obey Allah,
o f reward both worldly and spiritual, and in the hereafter, and as a
w am er to those who disobey Allah o f punishm ent in this world and
the hereafter.
Part o f bringing glad tidings and w arning is explaining the deeds
and behaviour that are subject to the glad tidings and warnings. The
Prophet (-U p is the one who explains w hat is good and w hat is evil,
w hat leads to happiness and w hat leads to doom , w hat is true and
w hat is false.
H ence A llah follow ed that by saying: «jso that you [O people]
m ay believe in A llah and His M essenger]} that is, because o f the

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M essenger’s call to you, and his teaching o f that w hich will benefit
you. We sent him so that you m ay believe in Allah and His M essenger
( 2H X w hich requires you to obey them in all your affairs.
«fand support and honour him)* that is, support the M essenger ( ^ )
*(and honour him)* that is, venerate him , respect him and fulfil his
rights, because you owe him a great deal.
*fand glorify A llah m orning and afternoon)*, at the beginning and
end o f the day. In this verse, A llah m entions the right that is shared
betw een A llah and His M essenger (* |t), w hich is to believe in them
both; the right w hich is exclusive to the M essenger ( i | | ) , w hich is
veneration and honour; and the right w hich is exclusive to A llah,
w hich is to glorify and w orship Him , by prayer and otherw ise.

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48:10. Verily those who swear allegiance to you are in fact swearing
allegiance to Allah; the Hand o f Allah is over their hands.
W hoever breaks his oath does so only to his own detriment,
but whoever fulfils the covenant he has made with Allah, He
will grant him an immense reward.

The allegiance to w hich A llah refers here is B ay ‘at ar-R idw an, in
which the C om panions swore allegiance to the M essenger o f
Allah (J§ |), pledging not to desert him on the battlefield. This was a
specific covenant, one o f the conditions o f which was that they w ould
not flee from battle, even if only a few o f them were left, and even if
things reached the point at w hich it is ordinarily perm issible to flee.

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Allah ( te ) says here: those who swore allegiance to you were in


fact ^sw earing allegiance to Allah}* and m aking their covenant with
Him. So as to em phasise this idea, Allah says: <fthe H and o f A llah is
over their hands}* that is, it is as if they w ere sw earing allegiance to
A llah and putting their hands in His Hand in this instance. All o f this
serves to em phasise the im portance o f that oath and m otivate them
to fulfil it. Hence He says: ^W hoever breaks his oath^ and does not
fulfil the pledge he m ade to Allah
^does so only to his ow n detriment}* that is, the consequences o f that
w ill affect him and the punishm ent thereo f will befall him.
^ b u t w hoever fulfils the covenant he has m ade w ith A llah^ that
is, fulfils it com pletely
^H e will grant him an im m ense reward}* - no one know s how great
it is except the One W ho will bestow it upon him.

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O r - U :£u)l;J r -)

48:11. Those o f the Bedouin who lagged behind 25 will say to you: We
were preoccupied with [looking after] our wealth and families,
so pray for forgiveness for us. They say with their tongues what
is not in their hearts. Say: Who has any power at all [to intervene]

25 These Bedouin stayed behind when the Prophet (j^S) set out for Makkah
to perform ‘umrah.

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on your behalf with Allah if it be His will to do you harm or


benefit you? Verily Allah is well aware o f all that you do.
48:12. Rather you thought that the Messenger and the believers would
never return to their families, and that was made fair-seeming
in your hearts. You harboured evil thoughts, for you are people
devoid o f good and doomed.
48:13. Whoever does not believe in Allah and His Messenger, verily
We have prepared for the disbelievers a raging fire.

H ere A llah (4c) criticises those w ho lagged behind and did not
join His M essenger ( i|§ ) in striving in His cause, such as the Bedouin
w hose faith was w eak and in w hose hearts w as a disease and w ho
thought ill o f A llah (d£>. They w ould m ake excuses and say that they
w ere distracted by their property and their fam ilies from going out
for jihad.
They asked the M essenger o f A llah ( i|§ ) to pray for forgiveness
for them. But Allah (3£) said: ^T hey say w ith their tongues w hat is
not in their hearts]). The request for prayers for forgiveness from the
M essenger o f A llah ($ |§ ) m ay have been indicative o f regret and
m ay have been an adm ission o f their sin, for their lagging behind
required repentance and prayers for forgiveness. If this is w hat was
in their hearts, then the M essenger’s prayers for forgiveness w ould
benefit them , because they had repented and regretted it. But w hat
was really in their hearts was that they only lagged behind because
they thought ill o f Allah.
They thought <jthat the M essenger and the believers w ould never
return to their families]) that is, they thought that they w ould be killed
or eradicated, and this notion becam e fair-seem ing in their hearts and
they w ere content with it, until it becam e deeply rooted in their hearts.
There w ere tw o reasons for that:
1- They w ere people w ho w ere ^d ev o id o f good and doom ed^
that is, there was nothing good in them , for if there had been

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anything good in them , this notion w ould not have taken root
in their hearts.
2- They w ere lacking in faith and certainty o f the prom ise o f Allah
that His religion w ould eventually be victorious and His word
w ould becom e suprem e. H ence A llah says: ^W h o ev er does
not believe in A llah and His Messenger)*, and therefore is a
disbeliever w ho is deserving o f punishm ent, ^verily We have
prepared for the disbelievers a raging fire p.

0 0

48:14. To Allah belongs the dominion o f the heavens and the earth. He
forgives whomever He wills and punishes whomever He wills,
and Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.

T hat is, He is the only O ne W ho possesses sovereignty in the


heavens and on earth; He controls them as He w ills, in accordance
with the divine decree, religious decree and rulings o f requital. Hence
He m entions the requital that has to do with sh ar‘i obligations:
^H e forgives w hom ever He wills)* - this refers to those w ho carry
out w hat A llah com m ands
^ a n d pun ish es w h o m ev er He wills)* o f those w ho n eg lect the
com m ands o f Allah.
^an d A llah is O ft-Forgiving, M ost M erciful^ that is, His constant
attributes that are never separated from Him are forgiveness and
mercy.
At all tim es He forgives the sinners and pardons those w ho err;
He accepts the repentance o f the penitent and sends dow n abundant
goodness by night and day.

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48:15. Those who lagged behind will say, when you set out to collect
the spoils: Allow us to follow you. They want to change the
word [promise] o f Allah. Say: You shall not follow us; Allah has
already decreed that. They will say: You begrudge us [a share o f
the spoils] out o f jealousy. Rather they understand only a little .26

Having m entioned and criticised those w ho lagged behind, A llah


Cfe) now m entions their w orldly punishm ent: w hen the M essenger
o f A llah ( ^ ) and his C om panions set out to collect the spoils,
fo r w hich there w as no fighting involved in seizing them , these
people asked to be allow ed to jo in them and have a share, saying:
^A llow us to follow you. They want)* thereby ^to change the word
[promise] o f A llah^, as He decreed punishm ent for them , and that
only the believing C om panions should get a share o f those spoils, as
Allah decreed that in term s o f both religious rulings and the divine
decree.
^S ay ^ to them: ^You shall not follow us; Allah has already decreed
that)* - you are to be deprived o f it because you w ronged yourselves
and because you failed to fight the first time.
^T h ey will say)* in response to these w ords by w hich they are
prevented from going out: ^You begrudge us [a share o f the spoils] out

26 A llah (-Jc) prom ised the sp oils o f Khaybar e x c lu siv e ly to the M uslim s
w ho w ere present at al-H udaybiyah, but th ose w h o had lagged behind
w anted to jo in the Khaybar cam paign in hope o f acquiring a share o f the
sp oils. H ence in this verse H e states that this w ill not be allow ed .

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o f jealo u sy ^. This is the best that they can com e up with concerning
this matter. If they w ere m ature enough, they w ould have realised that
their being deprived o f a share was because o f their sin, and that sins
have consequences in both worldly and spiritual terms. Hence Allah
says: «fRather they understand only a little^.

■f > * fi' A ^ X- Zy . £ ^ t ^ *\
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(W ~ U IjCiil fljyj)

48:16. Say to the Bedouin who lagged behind: You will be called upon
to fight a people formidable in warfare, and you will fight them
unless they submit. Then if you obey, Allah will grant you a
goodly reward; but if you turn away as you did before, He will
afflict you with a painful punishment.
48:17. There is no blame on the blind nor any blame on the lame nor
any blame on the sick [if they do not go forth to fight]. Whoever
obeys Allah and His Messenger, He will admit him to gardens
through which rivers flow; but whoever turns away, He will
afflict him with a painful punishment.

Having m entioned those Bedouin who lagged behind from jihad


in His cause, and w ho gave invalid excuses, and asked to go out
with the M uslim s when there was no fighting involved, ju st for the
purpose o f getting a share o f the spoils, Allah said to them, by way
o f testing them:

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^Say to the Bedouin w ho lagged behind: You will be called upon to


fight a people form idable in warfare)* that is, the M essenger (J ^ |)
and those who take his place am ong the R ightly-G uided C aliphs and
rulers will call you to fight.
Those people who they w ere to be called upon to fight w ere the
Persians, Rom ans and others o f their ilk.
*fand you will fight them unless they submit)* that is, either one or
the other will happen. This describes the real situation, for when they
engaged them and fought them , as these people were still form idable
in warfare, in that situation they did not accept to pay the jizyah\ rather
they w ould either enter Islam or fight in defence o f their religion to
which they chose to adhere.
B ut w hen the M uslim s defeated them and they grew w eak and
subm itted, they lost their strength. Therefore their options were either
to becom e M uslim or pay the jizyah.
^T hen if you obey)* the one who calls you to fight these people
^A llah will grant you a goodly reward)* w hich is the rew ard that
A llah and His M essenger ( ^ ) have connected to jih ad in A llah ’s
cause.
fjbut if you turn aw ay as you did before)* when you turned away
from fighting those w hom the M essenger ( i | | ) called you to fight
^ H e w ill afflict you w ith a painful p u n ish m en t^ . T his verse is
indicative o f the virtue o f the R ightly-G uided C aliphs w ho called
for jih ad against people who w ere form idable in w arfare, and that it
was obligatory to obey them in that regard.
T hen A llah m entions valid reasons that excuse a person from
going out for jih ad , as He says: ^T h e re is no blam e on the blind
n or any blam e on the lam e nor any blam e on the sick [if they do
not go forth to fight] ^ that is, there is no blam e on them for staying
behind from jihad, because they have excuses that prevent them from
doing so.

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^W hoever obeys Allah and His Messenger)? by com plying with


their com m ands and heeding their prohibitions,
^H e will adm it him to gardens through which rivers flow]?, in which
there is all that their souls may desire and that m ay delight their eyes.
«[but whoever turns away)? from obedience to Allah and His M essenger
(2§),
«(He will afflict him with a painful punishm ent^. All happiness is in
obeying Allah and all m isery is in disobeying Him and going against
His com m ands.

(T t-\ A : ^ l ; jy*)

48:18. Allah was well pleased with the believers when they swore
allegiance to you [O Muhammad] under the tree .27 He knew
what was in their hearts, so He sent down reassurance to them,
and He rewarded them with [the glad tidings of] a victory soon
to come

27 The Prophet ( ^ ) had sent ‘Uthman to Makkah to speak with


Quraysh and tell them that the Muslims had come in peace for the sole
purpose of performing ‘umrah, but they detained him for so long that
the Muslims thought that they might have murdered him, which would
constitute an act of war. Hence the Prophet (3S|), standing under a tree,
accepted their oaths of allegiance and pledge to fight, if need be, and
never flee.

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48:19. and abundant spoils that they would seize. And Allah is Almighty,
Most Wise.
48:20. Allah has promised you abundant spoils that you will seize and
has hastened this 28 for you, and He has restrained people’s hands
from [harming] you, so that it may be a sign for the believers
and so that He may guide you to a straight path.
48:21. And there are other spoils that you have not yet been able to
seize; Allah has earmarked them for you, for Allah has power
over all things.

H ere A llah (-ic) tells us o f His grace and mercy, and that He was
pleased with the believers w hen they swore that oath o f allegiance to
the M essenger («|§) that led to their trium ph, and by m eans o f which
they attained happiness in this w orld and the hereafter.
The reason for that oath o f allegiance - which was called B ay‘at
ar-Ridw an (the oath o f divine pleasure) because Allah was pleased
with the believers because o f it; it is also know n as the oath o f the
people o f the tree - was that when negotiations took place betw een
the M essen g er o f A llah (* |§ ) and the p olytheists on the D ay o f
al-H udaybiyah concerning the reasons for his com ing, and he stated
that he had not com e to fight anyone and that he had only com e to
visit and venerate the sacred House, the M essenger o f Allah ( ^ ) sent
‘U thm an ibn ‘Affan (radiya A llahu ‘anhu - m ay A llah be pleased
w ith him ) to M akkah with that m essage. Then there cam e false news
that the polytheists had killed ‘U thm an, so the M essenger o f Allah
(iH ) gathered together the believers w ho w ere w ith him , o f whom
there w ere approxim ately fifteen hundred, and they sw ore allegiance
to him beneath a tree, pledging to fight the polytheists and sw earing
that they w ould not flee until they died.

28 This refers to the spoils o f Khaybar; immediately after their return to


Madinah from al-Hudaybiyah, the Muslims set out on the campaign to
Khaybar.

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So A llah stated that H e w as pleased w ith the believers in that


situation, w hich was one o f the greatest acts o f obedience and m eans
o f draw ing close to Him.
^H e knew w hat was in their hearts)* o f faith
^so He sent down reassurance to th em ^ in appreciation o f w hat was
in their hearts and so as to increase them in guidance.
He also knew what w as in their hearts o f distress at the conditions
im posed by the polytheists on His M essenger ( j|§ ) , so he sent down
reassurance to them in order to m ake them steadfast and give them
peace o f mind.
^and He rew arded them with [the glad tidings of] a victory soon to
come)* w hich w as the conquest o f K haybar, at w hich no one was
present but those who had been at al-H udaybiyah.
They alone w ere present at Khaybar, the booty o f w hich was for
them alone, as appreciation for w hat they had done o f obeying Allah
(4g) and seeking His pleasure.
^and abundant spoils that they would seize. And Allah is Almighty,
M ost Wise)* that is, He possesses m ight and pow er by w hich He
subjugates all things. If He so w illed, He w ould have defeated the
disbelievers in every battle that took place betw een them and the
believers. But He is also M ost Wise; He tests some by means o f others,
and He tests the believers by m eans o f the disbelievers.
^A llah has prom ised you abundant spoils that you will seized -
this includes all the booty that the M uslim s will seize until the Day
o f Resurrection
«fand has hastened th is^ nam ely the spoils o f K haybar ^ fo r you)*,
so do not think that this is all there is; rather it will be followed by
m uch more.
^an d ^ give thanks to Allah, for ^H e has restrained people’s hands
from [harm ing] you)* w hen they cam e to fight you and w ere eager
to do so. This is a blessing by m eans o f w hich He m ade things easier
for you.

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^so that it^ nam ely this blessing ^m ay be a sign for the believers^
by m eans o f w hich they see p ro o f o f the prom ise o f Allah and know
that His prom ise is true, and so that they m ay be certain o f His reward
for the believers, and that the O ne W ho decreed that this should
happen m ay decree other booty for them.
^and so that He m ay guide you)* by m eans o f w hat He m akes
available to you
*fto a straight path)* o f know ledge, faith and good deeds.
tfAnd there are other spoils)* that is, He has prom ised you other
spoils
dthat you have not yet been able to seize)* at the tim e w hen these
w ords w ere first spoken.
tfAllah has earm arked them for you)* that is, as He has control over
them and they are subject to His sovereignty, and He has prom ised
them to you. W hat H e has prom ised w ill inevitably com e to pass,
because o f the perfect m ight o f Allah B s ). Hence He says: ^ fo r Allah
has pow er over all things)*.

0 0

48:22. If those who disbelieve had fought you [at al-Hudaybiyah], they
would have turned and fled, and they would not have found any
protector or helper.
48:23. Such was the way o f Allah in the past. And you will find no
change in the way o f Allah.

These are glad tidings from A llah to His believing slaves o f their
victory over the disbelieving enem ies, and that if they had confronted

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them in battle and fought them , ^they w ould have turned and fled,
and they would not have found any protector]? to take care o f them
^ o r helper]? to help them and support them in fighting you; rather
they w ould have failed and been defeated. This is the way o f Allah
in dealing w ith the previous nations, that it is the troops o f A llah
w ho will be the victors. ^A nd you will find no change in the way
o f A llah]*.

0 0

48:24. It is He Who restrained their hands from [harming] you and


your hands from [harming] them inside Makkah, after giving
you the upper hand over them. And Allah sees well all that you
do.
48:25. It is they who disbelieved and barred you from the Sacred
Mosque, and prevented the offerings from reaching their place
o f sacrifice. Were it not for believing men and believing women
[in Makkah] o f whom you were unaware, whom you might have
trampled underfoot and thus unwittingly incurred a burden o f
sin [Allah would have commanded you to fight the disbelievers.
But He ordained it thus] so that He might admit whomever He
will to His mercy. If they [believers and disbelievers] had been
distinct from one another, We would surely have afflicted those
among them who disbelieved with a painful punishment.

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Here Allah (*Jg) rem inds His slaves o f how He blessed them by
saving them from the evil o f the disbelievers and from having to fight
them , as He says:
^It is He W ho restrained their hands)* that is, the hands o f the people
o f M akkah ^from [harm ing] you and your hands from [harm ing]
them inside M akkah, after giving you the upper hand over them)*
that is, after you gained the upper hand over them and they cam e
under your control, w ithout any peace deal or covenant. They were
approxim ately eighty m en who charged at the M uslim s, hoping to
catch them unaw ares, but they found the M uslim s alert and ready, so
they seized them, then they let them go and did not kill them , out o f
m ercy from Allah tow ards the believers, because it w as not in their
interests to kill them.
^A nd Allah sees well all that you do)* and He will requite each
person for his deeds, and He takes care o f you as He is the best to
do that.
Then Allah B s ) m entions the reasons that encourage the M uslim s
to fight the polytheists, w hich is th eir d isb e lie f in A llah and His
M essenger ( ^ ) , and their barring the M essenger o f A llah ( « ||) and
the believers with him from going to the Sacred House to visit it and
venerate it by perform ing Hajj and ‘umrah.
It is also they who ^prevented the offerings from reaching their
place o f sacrifice)*, which is the place where they are to be slaughtered,
nam ely M akkah. They prevented them from reaching it w rongfully
and out o f enmity. All o f these m atters are reasons to fight them.
But then there w as a reason not to fight them , w hich w as the
presence o f believing m en and w om en am ong the polytheists; they
w ere not living apart from them in a separate place, such that harm
w ould not reach them . W ere it not for these believing m en and
w om en, w hom the M uslim s did not know, and w hom they m ight
have ^tram pled underfoot)* - in other w ords, w ere it not for fear that
they m ight be tram pled underfoot, «fand thus unw ittingly incurred

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a burden o f sin ^ that w ould result from fighting them and causing
them harm and injury, A llah w ould have com m anded you to fight
the disbelievers.
There is also another benefit from not fighting, which is so that
Allah might adm it to His m ercy w hom ever He w illed, and bless them
with faith after disbelief, and guidance after m isguidance. Therefore
He prevented them from fighting them for this reason.
«flf they [believers and d isb eliev ers] had been distinct from
one anotherjj that is, if the believers had been separate from the
disbelievers,
c(We w ould surely have afflicted those am ong them who disbelieved
with a painful punishm ent^ by m aking it perm issible for you to fight
them , giving you perm ission to do that, and granting you victory
over them.

$ 0

48:26. [Remember] when those who disbelieved harboured bigotry


in their hearts - the bigotry o f ignorance 29 - then Allah sent
down His reassurance to His Messenger and to the believers,
and caused them to adhere to the word o f piety ,30 for they were
more deserving and worthy o f it. And Allah has knowledge o f
all things.

29 When drawing up the treaty document at al-Hudaybiyah, the disbelievers


refused to include the phrases “in the name of Allah, the Most Gracious,
the Most Merciful” and “the Messenger of Allah ( ^ ) ”.
30 The word o f piety is “la ilaha ilia Allah (there is no god but Allah)”,
which forms the basis of piety and righteousness.

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48:27. Indeed Allah will fulfil the dream o f His Messenger in truth: you
will surely enter the Sacred Mosque, if Allah wills, in peace and
safety, and you will shave your heads or cut your hair, without
any fear. He knew what you did not know and He granted, before
that ,31 a victory soon to come.
48:28. It is He Who has sent His M essenger with guidance and the
religion o f truth, so that He may cause it to prevail over all other
religions; and sufficient is Allah as a witness.

Indeed A llah will fulfil the dream o f His M essenger in truth)? -


the M essenger o f Allah (*|§) had seen a dream in M adinah and had
told his C om panions about it; the dream said that they w ould enter
M akkah and circum am bulate the Kaaba. But when, as a result o f the
Treaty o f al-H udaybiyah, they w ent back w ithout having entered
M akkah, they had a great deal to say about that, to the extent that
they said to the M essenger o f Allah ( ^ ) : Did you not tell us that we
w ould com e to the Kaaba and circum am bulate it? He said:
«Did I tell you that it w ould be this year?» (Bukhari)
They said: No. He said:
«You will surely com e to it and circum am bulate it.» (Bukhari)
- and Allah says here: ^Indeed Allah will fulfil the dream o f His
M essenger in truth)? that is, it will inevitably com e to pass and be
fulfilled, and whether it comes sooner or later, that does not undermine
the prom ise.
«fyou will surely enter the Sacred M osque, if Allah wills, in peace
and safety, and you will shave your heads or cut your hair)? that is,
you will enter it for the purpose o f venerating this sacred House, and
you will perform and com plete your rituals by shaving your heads or
cutting your hair, w ithout any fear.

31 That is, before they were to enter Makkah to perform ‘umrah the following
year. The victory referred to here is the conquest of Khaybar.

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^H e knew ^, o f w hat w as in your best interests,


<fwhat you did not know and He granted, before that)* that is, before
entering M akkah in the m anner described,
^ a victory soon to com e^.
Because this incident caused some distress to some o f the believers,
as they did not understand the w isdom behind it, A llah explained the
w isdom behind it and the benefits thereof. The sam e applies to all o f
His sh ar‘i rulings; they are all guidance and mercy. A llah explained
the m atter in general term s that apply to all rulings, as He said: ^ It is
He W ho has sent His M essenger w ith guidance^ w hich is beneficial
knowledge that guides people aw ay from m isguidance and shows the
paths o f good and evil.
^and the religion o f truth)* that is, the religion that is based on
truth, and is justice, kindness and mercy.
This refers to every righteous deed that purifies the heart, cleanses
the soul, guides to good characteristics and raises one in status.
^so that He may cause it to prevail over all other religions)* on the
basis o f p ro o f and evidence, and subdue the disbelievers.

48:29. M uhammad is the M essenger o f Allah, and those who are


with him are firm and unyielding towards the disbelievers,
compassionate towards one another. You see them bowing and

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prostrating [in prayer], seeking the grace and pleasure o f Allah.


Their mark is on their faces from the effects o f prostration. Such
is their description in the Torah, and their likeness in the Gospel
is that o f a seed which sends forth its shoot, then makes it strong;
then it grows thick and stands straight on its stem, delighting
the sowers - so that He may infuriate the disbelievers through
them .32 Allah has promised those among them who believe and
do righteous deeds forgiveness and an immense reward.

H ere A llah tells us about His M essenger and his C om panions,


both M uhajireen and Ansar, describing them with the m ost perfect
attributes and in the m ost sublim e situation (nam ely bow ing and
prostrating).
A nd He tells us that they are «|firm and unyielding tow ards the
disbelievers]* that is, they are serious and strive hard in opposing them,
putting their utm ost effort into achieving that. Hence the disbelievers
saw nothing o f them except harshness and toughness, therefore their
enem ies subm itted and yielded to them , and the M uslim s subdued
them.
^com passionate towards one another)* that is, loving one another,
show ing m ercy and kindness to one another, like a single body; each
o f them loves for his brother w hat he loves for him self. This is how
they treat one another.
As for their interactions with their Creator, ^You see them bowing
and prostrating [in prayer]^ that is, their main characteristic is that
they pray a great deal, and the m ost im portant part o f the prayer is
bow ing and prostration,
seeking}* by m eans o f this act o f worship

32 The likeness of the seed describes the Sahabah, who were few in number
and weak in the beginning, but gradually increased in numbers and strength
until they reached a level of strength that infuriated the disbelievers.

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^the grace and pleasure o f Allah)? that is, this is their aim , to attain
the pleasure o f their Lord and His reward.
^T h eir m ark is on their faces from the effects o f prostration)? that
is, the act o f worship - as a result o f their doing it a great deal and
doing it well - has left its m ark on their faces, w hich shine brightly.
Just as the prayer illum inated th eir hearts, it has also illum inated
their faces.
^ S u c h ^ that is, w hat is described here «fis their description in the
Torah ^ that is, this description o f them that is given by A llah is also
m entioned in the Torah.
As for their likeness in the Gospel, they are described in a different
way: in their perfection and cooperation, they are like «fa seed which
sends forth its shoot, then m akes it strong; then it grow s thick and
stands straight on its stem, delighting the sowers)? with its perfection,
upright grow th, beauty and reaching maturity.
The C om panions are like such plants in that they benefit
people and people need them. Strength o f faith and righteous deeds
are like the strong roots and stem o f the plant.
The fact that the m inor C om panions and those w ho cam e to Islam
later joined the senior Com panions and helped and supported them
in their endeavours to establish the religion o f A llah and call people
to it is like the seed which sends forth its shoot, then m akes it strong;
then it grows thick and stands straight on its stem.
H ence A llah says: «(so that He m ay infuriate the disbelievers
through them)? when they see the believers’ unity and firm adherence
to their religion, and when they confront one another in the battlefield.
^ A lla h has p ro m ised th o se am o n g them w ho b eliev e and
do righteous deeds forgiveness and an im m ense reward)?. The
C om panions com bined faith and righteous deeds, so A llah
com bined for them forgiveness that results in protection from the
evils o f this w orld and the hereafter with great rew ard in this world
and the hereafter.

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Here w e w ill tell the story o f al-H udaybiyah at length, as narrated


by Imam Sham s ad-D een Ibn al-Q ayyim in al-H adi an-N abaw i, as
this will help us to understand this soorah which speaks o f this event.
He (m ay Allah have m ercy on him) said:

T h e s to r y o f a l-H u d a y b iy a h
N afi‘ said that it occurred in D hul-Q a‘dah 6 AH, w hich is the correct
view. This is the view o f az-Z uhri, Q atadah, M oosa ibn ‘U qbah,
M uham m ad ibn Is-haq, and others.
H isham ibn ‘U rw ah said, n arratin g from his fath er (ra d iya
Allahu 'anhuma - m ay A llah be pleased with both o f them ), that the
M essenger o f Allah ( « ||) set out for al-H udaybiyah in Ram adan, but
in fact it w as in Shawwal. This is a m istake on his part; it was the
conquest o f M akkah that occurred in Ramadan.
Abul-Asw ad said, narrating from ‘Urwah, that it occurred in Dhul-
Q a‘dah, according to the correct view.
In as-Saheehayn it is narrated from Anas that the Prophet ( ^ )
perform ed ‘um rah four tim es, all o f them in D hul-Q a‘dah, and he
m entioned the ‘um rah o f al-H udaybiyah as one o f them, when he was
accom panied by fifteen hundred believers. This w as also narrated
in as-Saheehayn from Jabir; in the same books it was narrated from
‘A bdullah ibn Abi Awfa that they w ere thirteen hundred.
Q atadah said: I said to S a‘eed ibn al-M usayyab: How m any were
the people w ho w ere present at B ay‘at ar-R idw an? He said: Fifteen
hundred. I said: Jab ir ibn ‘A bdullah said that they w ere fourteen
hundred. He said: May Allah have mercy on him; he must be mistaken,
for it w as he who told me that they were fifteen hundred. I said: Both
view s are narrated soundly from Jabir, and it was narrated soundly
from him that in the year o f al-H udaybiyah they slaughtered seventy
cam els, and one camel m ay be sacrificed on b eh alf o f seven people.
It w as said to him: How m any w ere you? He said: Fourteen hundred,
on horseback and on foot.

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O ne feels m ore at ease w ith this view (nam ely that they w ere
fourteen hundred), and this is the view o f al-B ara’ ibn ‘Azib, M a‘qil
ibn Yasar, S alam ah ibn al-A k w a‘ according to the m ore
sound o f the two reports, and al-M usayyab ibn Hazan. S hu‘bah said,
narrating from Q atadah, from S a ‘eed ibn al-M usayyab, from his
father: We w ere with the M essenger o f Allah ( ^ § ) beneath the tree,
fourteen hundred men. Those w ho say that they w ere seven hundred
are clearly m istaken. The reason for their m istake is that on that day
they slaughtered seventy cam els, and it w as stated that a cam el is
sufficient for seven or ten men, but this is not in harm ony with what
he stated concerning their number, because he stated that a camel was
slaughtered during this cam paign on b eh alf o f seven, so if the seventy
cam els w ere for all o f them , they w ould have been four hundred and
ninety men. But at the end o f the sam e hadith, he said that they were
fourteen hundred.
W hen they were in D hul-H ulayfah the M essenger o f A llah (*!§)
garlanded and m arked his sacrificial cam el, and entered ihram for
‘um rah. He sent a spy from K huza‘ah ahead o f him , to find out about
Q uraysh for him , and w hen they w ere near ‘U sfan, the spy cam e
and said: I have ju st left K a‘b ibn L u ’ayy; they have gathered the
A habeesh (som e A rab tribes) and m any others against you, and they
w ant to fight you and bar you from reaching the Kaaba. The Prophet
( ^ § ) consulted his C om panions, and asked them:
«D o you think w e should attack the land o f these people w ho are
supporting Q uraysh, or should w e head tow ards the H ouse, and
w hoever tries to bar us from it, we should fight them ?»
A bu B akr said: Allah and His M essenger know best. R ather we
have com e to perform ‘um rah and w e have not com e to fight anyone,
but w hoever prevents us from reaching the House, we should fight
them. So the Prophet ( ^ ) said:
«Then let us m ove on.»

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So they moved on, until when they were partway there, the Prophet
( S ip said:
«Khalid ibn al-W aleed is in al-Ghumaym with the cavalry o f Quraysh;
go to the right.»
(The narrators said:) By Allah, K halid did not realise that they
w ere there until he saw the dust o f the oncom ing army. So he rushed
to warn Quraysh.
The Prophet («§§) continued on until, when he was in the m ountain
pass from which he would come down upon them, his mount sat down.
The people said: M ove, move! But it would not move. Then they said:
A l-Q asw a’ is being obstinate. The Prophet ( i|§ ) said:
«A1-Qaswa’ is not being obstinate, for that is not her nature. W hat is
restraining her is the sam e thing that restrained the elephant.»
Then he said:
«By the One in W hose Hand is m y soul, they will not ask me for any
deal that is based on venerating w hat Allah has m ade sacred, but I
will agree to it.»
He prodded his camel and she jum ped up, and he turned back and
cam ped in the furthest part o f al-H udaybiyah, beside a well that had
a little water. The people took the w ater a little at a tim e, but they
soon used it up, and they com plained o f thirst to the M essenger o f
Aiiah m x
He took an arrow from his quiver, and instructed them to put it in
the well. By Allah, it kept flow ing with w hat they needed o f w ater
until they m oved on.
Quraysh got worried because o f his coming down towards them, so
the M essenger o f Allah ( ^ ) w anted to send one o f his Com panions
to them. He sum m oned ‘U m ar ibn al-K hattab in order to send him,
but ‘U m ar said: O M essenger o f Allah, there is no one o f Banu K a‘b
in M akkah w ho could defend m e if they w ant to harm m e; send
‘Uthm an ibn ‘Affan instead, for his clan is there and he will be able
to tell them w hatever you want.

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So the M essenger o f Allah ( i | | ) sum m oned ‘Uthm an ibn ‘Affan


and sent him to Quraysh, saying:
«Tell them that we have not com e to fight; w e have only com e to
perform ‘um rah. And call them to Islam .»
He instructed him to go to som e believing m en and w om en in
M akkah, and give them the glad tidings o f victory and tell them that
Allah (4c) w ould cause His religion to prevail in M akkah, so that no
one w ould have to conceal his faith in the city. ‘Uthm an set out, and
passed by Q uraysh in Baldah. They said: W here are you going? He
said: The M essenger o f Allah ( ^ ) has sent me to call you to Allah
and to Islam , and to tell you that w e have not com e to fight; rather
w e have com e to perform ‘um rah. They said: We have heard w hat
you say; you m ay carry on.
A ban ibn S a‘eed ibn al-‘As stood up to w elcom e him. He put a
saddle on his horse and seated ‘Uthm an on the horse, declaring that
he was under his protection, then A ban rode behind ‘Uthm an, until
they cam e to M akkah. Before ‘Uthm an cam e back, the M uslim s said:
‘Uthm an is the first one o f us to reach the K aaba and circum am bulate
it. But the M essenger o f Allah (s |||) said:
«I do not think he w ill circum am bulate the K aaba w hen w e are
detained (and prevented from doing so).»
T hey said: W hat is there to prev en t him from do in g that, O
M essenger o f Allah, w hen he has reached it? He said:
«That is w hat I think: he will not circum am bulate the Kaaba unless
we circum am bulate it with him .»
And the M uslim s approached the polytheists to discuss a peace
deal.
A man from one o f the two groups threw som ething at a m an from
the other side, and a skirm ish took place in w hich they shot arrow s
and threw stones at one another, and the tw o groups shouted at one
another and detained w hom ever they found o f the other party. The

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M essenger o f Allah ( j | | ) heard that ‘Uthm an had been killed, so he


called the M uslim s to sw ear allegiance to him.
The M uslim s rushed to the M essenger o f A llah ( * ||) , who was
beneath a tree, and swore allegiance to him, pledging not to flee. Then
the M essenger o f Allah ( j | | ) took hold o f his own hand and said:
«This is on b eh alf o f ‘U thm an.»
When the oath o f allegiance was complete, ‘Uthman came back and
the M uslim s said to him: Have you had your fill, O Abu ‘Abdullah, o f
circum am bulating the Kaaba? He said: H ow ill you think o f me! By
the O ne in W hose Hand is my soul, even if I stayed there for a year,
and the M essenger o f Allah («H) stayed in al-Hudaybiyah, I would not
circum am bulate it until the M essenger o f Allah ( j | | ) did so. Quraysh
invited me to circum am bulate the Kaaba, but I refused. The M uslim s
said: The M essenger o f Allah is the m ost know ledgeable o f us about
Allah and the m ost positive in thinking.
‘Um ar had taken the hand o f the M essenger o f Allah ( ^ | ) to swear
allegiance to him under the tree, and all the M uslims swore allegiance
except al-Jadd ibn Qays. M a‘qil ibn Yasar held a branch up away from
the M essenger o f Allah (< lt). The first one to sw ear allegiance to him
was Abu Sinan al-A sadi. Salam ah ibn al-A kw a‘ swore allegiance to
him three times, am ong the first group o f people, the m iddle group
and the last group.
W hilst they were like that, Budayl ibn W arqa’ al-K huza‘i came
with a group o f Khuza‘ah, who were sincere advisers to the M essenger
o f Allah ( ^ ) , from am ong the people o f Tiham ah, and said: 1 have
ju s t seen K a ‘b ibn L u ’ayy and ‘A m ir ibn L u ’ayy, cam ped by the
profuse w ater o f al-H udaybiyah. They have m ilch-cam els with them,
and they intend to fight you and bar you from reaching the Kaaba.
The M essenger o f Allah ( « ||) said:
« We have not com e to fight anyone; rather w e have com e to perform
‘um rah. W ar has w eakened Q uraysh and they have suffered great

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losses. If they wish I will conclude a truce with them and they m ust
refrain from interfering betw een m e and the people (and if I prevail),
then they m ay decide w hether they w ant to enter Islam as the people
have done. If not, they w ill have rested and regained their strength,
and will be able to resum e fighting me. Then, by the One in W hose
Hand is my soul, I will surely fight them in defence o f this cause o f
m ine, until I am killed or Allah causes His religion to prevail.»
Budayl said: I will convey your w ords to them . He set out until he
came to Q uraysh and said to them: I have com e to you from this man,
and I heard him say som ething. If you wish, I will tell you about it.
The foolish ones am ong them said: We have no need for you to tell
us anything about him. But the w ise ones am ong them said: Tell us
w hat you heard. He said: I heard him say such and such. ‘Urw ah ibn
M as‘ood ath-Thaqafi said: This m an has offered you a reasonable
proposal, so accept it and let m e go and talk to him. They said: Go
to him.
So he cam e to him and began talking to him , and the P rophet
( i§ |) said to him som ething sim ilar to w hat he had said to Budayl,
whereupon ‘Urwah said: O M uhammad, do you want to eradicate your
own people? Have you ever heard o f anyone am ong the A rabs who
destroyed his own people? I f you insist on fighting, then by A llah, I
am looking at the people’s faces and I see a collection o f riffraff, the
type w ho would flee and abandon you. Abu B akr said: Suck the teat
o f al-Lat! Do you think we would flee and abandon him ? He said:
W ho is this? He said: Abu Bakr. He said: By the One in W hose Hand
is my soul, were it not for a favour that I still owe you and have not
yet returned, I w ould have answ ered you.
Every tim e the Prophet ( i |§ ) started speaking, ‘U rw ah reached
out for his beard. A l-M ugheerah ibn S hu‘bah was beside the Prophet
(iH X and had a sword w ith him and was w earing a helm et. Every
tim e ‘Urwah reached out to grab the P rophet’s beard, al-M ugheerah
struck his hand with the handle o f his sword and said: Keep your hand

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aw ay from the beard o f the M essenger o f Allah ( s ||) ! ‘Urwah raised


his head and said: W ho is this? He said: A l-M ugheerah ibn S hu‘bah.
He said: O betrayer! Am I not still striving to protect you from the
consequences o f your treachery?
Al-M ugheerah had accompanied some people during the jahiliyah,
then he had killed them and taken their property, then he cam e and
entered Islam. The Prophet («§§) said:
«A s for your Islam , I accept it; as for the property, I do not w ant
anything o f it.»
Then ‘U rw ah started w atching the C om panions o f the M essenger
o f A llah ( ^ ||) , and by A llah, the P rophet ( i |§ ) did not spit but it
fell into the hand o f one o f them , and he rubbed it on his skin and
face.
If he instructed them to do som ething, they hastened to obey his
com m and. W hen he did wudoo ’, they alm ost fought over his leftover
water. W hen he spoke, they lowered their voices in his presence, and
they refrained from looking at him, out o f respect.
‘Urwah went back to his com panions and said: O people, by Allah,
I have visited kings, C hosroes and C aesar and the N egus, but, by
Allah, I have never seen any king w hose com panions venerated him
as the C om panions o f M uham m ad venerate M uham m ad. By Allah,
he does not spit but it falls in the hand o f one o f them , and he rubs
his face and skin with it. If he instructs them to do som ething, they
hasten to obey his command. W hen he does w udoo’, they almost fight
over his leftover water. W hen he speaks, they low er their voices in
his presence, and they refrain from looking at him, out o f respect. He
has offered you a reasonable proposal, so accept it.
A m an from Banu Kinanah said: Let me go to him. So they said:
Go to him.
W hen he approached the Prophet ( ^ ) , the M essenger o f Allah
( i l l ) said:

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«This is So-and-so; he is from a people w ho venerate the sacrificial


cam els, so send them in his direction.»
So they sent them , and the people m et him reciting the talbiyah.
W hen he saw that, he said: G lory be to Allah! These people should
not be prevented from reaching the Kaaba.
He went back to his com panions and said: I saw that the sacrificial
cam els have been garlanded and m arked, and I do not think that they
should be barred from reaching the Kaaba.
M ikraz ibn Hafs stood up and said: Let m e go to him . So they
said: Go to him.
W hen he approached them , the Prophet ( ^ § ) said:
«This is M ikraz ibn Hafs; he is a vicious man.»
He started speaking to the M essenger o f A llah (3|§), and whilst
he w as speaking to him , Suhayl ibn ‘A m r cam e and the P rophet
( iH ) said:
«Now the m atter has becom e easy .»33
He said: Com e, let us have a deal written down betw een us and
you. He called for the scribe and said:
«Write: In the name o f Allah, the M ost Gracious, the M ost M erciful.»
Suhayl said: As for the M ost G racious, by A llah we do not know
w hat this is. R ather write: “In Your nam e, O A llah” , as you used to
write.
The M uslim s said: By Allah, w e will not w rite anything except:
“ In the nam e o f Allah, the M ost Gracious, the M ost M erciful” .
The Prophet (^|§) said:
«Write: In Your nam e, O A llah.»
Then he said:

33 This was an optimistic remark based on the man’s name, because the
name Suhayl is derived from the same root as the word sahl (easy).

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«Write: This is w hat has been agreed to by M uham m ad the M essenger


o f Allah.»
Suhayl said: By Allah, if we knew that you w ere the M essenger
o f A llah, w e w ould not have barred you from reaching the K aaba
and we w ould not have fought you. R ather write: “M uham m ad ibn
‘A bdullah” . The Prophet ( j|§ ) said:
«I am indeed the M essenger o f Allah, even if you deny me. Write:
M uham m ad ibn ‘A bdullah.»
Then the Prophet ( j|§ ) said:
«That you will allow us to go to the Kaaba and circum am bulate it.»
Suhayl said: By Allah, we do not w ant the Arabs to say that we
yielded to pressure, but you can have that next year. So he w rote it
down.
Suhayl said: N o m an o f ours will com e to you, even if he follows
your religion, but you will return him to us.
The M uslim s said: Subhan Alldhl How can he be returned to the
polytheists, w hen he has com e as a M uslim ?
W hilst they w ere like that, Abu Jandal ibn Suhayl came, dragging
his chains, having escaped from the other side o f M akkah, and went
to the M uslim s, seeking their protection. Suhayl said: This is the first
one I ask you to return on the basis o f our deal. The Prophet ( j | | ) said:
«We have not concluded the deal yet.»
Suhayl said: Then in that case 1 will not m ake any deal with you.
The Prophet ( ^ ) said:
«Let him o ff for m y sake.»
He said: I will not let him off. He said:
«Do it!»
He said: I will not do it.
Abu Jandal said: O M uslim s, am I be returned to the polytheists
w hen I have com e as a M uslim ? Do you not see w hat I have

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been suffering? For he had been tortured severely for the sake o f
Allah.
‘U m ar ibn al-K hattab said: 1 never had any doubts since I becam e
M uslim , except on that day. I cam e to the Prophet ( i|§ ) and said: O
M essenger o f Allah, are you not the Prophet o f A llah? He said:
«Indeed I am.»
I said: Are w e not follow ing the truth and our enem ies following
falsehood? He said:
«Indeed.»
I said: How can we accept a deal that is humiliating for our religion,
and go back before A llah decides betw een us and our enem y? He
said:
«Verily I am the M essenger o f Allah, and He will cause me to prevail,
and I will not disobey Him.»
I said: Did you not tell us that we w ould com e to the Kaaba and
circum am bulate it? He said:
«Indeed I did, but did I tell you that you w ould com e to it this year?»
I said: No. He said:
«You will surely com e to it and circum am bulate it.»
T hen I w ent to A bu B akr and said to him w hat I had said to
the M essenger o f Allah ( ^ ) , and Abu B akr replied exactly as the
M essenger o f A llah ( ^ ) had replied, and he added: So stay close to
him until you die, for by Allah he is on the path o f truth. ‘U m ar said:
I did m any good deeds in hope o f expiating that.
W hen he had finished w riting the treaty, the M essenger o f Allah
( 0 j ) said:
«Get up and offer your sacrifices, then shave your heads.»
By A llah, not one m an am ong them got up even after he had said
that three times.

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W hen none o f them got up, he got up and w ent to U mm Salam ah


(,radiya Allahu 'anha - m ay A llah be pleased with her), and told her
how the people had responded. She said: O M essenger o f Allah, do
you want that to be done? Go out and do not say a w ord to anyone
until you slaughter your camel and call your barber to shave your head.
So he got up and w ent out, and he did not speak to anyone am ong
them until he had done that: he slaughtered his camel and called his
barber to shave his head.
W hen the people saw that, they got up and slaughtered their
cam els, and they started shaving one an o th er’s heads, to the point
that som e o f them alm ost killed one another out o f distress.
Then som e believing w om en cam e, and A llah (*}g) revealed the
words:
*(0 you who believe, when believing wom en come to you as migrants,
test their sincerity, although A llah knows best as to [the sincerity of]
their faith. Then if you determ ine that they are sincere believers, do
not send them back to the disbelievers; they are not lawful [wives]
for the disbelievers nor are the disbelievers law ful [husbands] for
th e m ... .Do not hold on to m arriage ties with disbelieving w o m en ...)*
(al-Mumtahanah 60: 10)
On that day ‘Umar divorced two wives o f his who were polytheists;
M u‘aw iyah m arried one o f them and Safwan ibn Um ayyah m arried
the other.
Then the Prophet ( « ||) returned to M adinah.
On the w ay back, A llah revealed to him the words: ^Verily We
have granted you [O M uham m ad, in the Treaty o f al-H udaybiyah]
a m anifest victory)* (48:1). ‘U m ar said: Is it a victory, O M essenger
o f Allah? He said:
«Yes.»
The C om panions said: C ongratulations to you, O M essenger o f
A llah, but w hat about us?

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Then A llah (^g) revealed the w ords: *flt is He W ho sent dow n


reassurance to the hearts o f the believers so that they m ight increase
in fa ith ...^ (48: 4)M

This is the end of the commentary on Soorat al-Fath.


All praise and thanks are for Allah, and may the blessings and
peace of Allah be upon Prophet Muhammad (3=§i), his family, and
his Companions abundantly until the Day of Judgement.

34 T he incident o f H udaybiyah is m entioned in detail in Ibn a l-Q a y y im ’s


Zadal-M a ‘ad. S om e portions o f it have been recorded by Imam Bukhari.
(Editor)

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49.

Soorat al-Hujurat
(Maddni)

In the name o f Allah,


the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful

rn 4Jl1i ul ^ u Jj )y * S so a i^l«- (jOu i l^ lS f

ii J jif t ; 3 o p 6> fJSJ I£»* Sii ijfe


yi4 ^ i t ;sks i s 0i j ^ ip ^
>.1j i-1 i l i t o -^ c d c i l o l d j ' Aii\ J jcx-

( r - t :o!^i3-i sj^-) 4 d b

49:1. O you who believe, do not decide any matter [of a religious or
communal nature] before Allah and His Messenger have decided
concerning it; and fear Allah, for verily Allah is All-Hearing,
All-Knowing.
49:2. O you who believe, do not raise your voices above the voice
o f the Prophet, and do not speak loudly to him as you speak
loudly to one another, lest your deeds come to nothing without
your realising it.

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49:3. Verily those who lower their voices in the presence o f Allah’s
Messenger are those whose hearts Allah has tested [and purified]
for piety; for them is forgiveness and an immense reward.

This refers to the proper etiquette to be observed with A llah (■&)


and with the M essenger o f A llah and the proper veneration,
respect and honour to be shown to him.
Allah instructs His believing slaves to do w hat is required o f them
as believers in Allah and His M essenger (j|§ ), w hich is to obey the
com m ands o f Allah and heed His prohibitions, and to com ply with
the com m ands o f Allah and follow the Sunnah o f the M essenger o f
A llah («|§) in all their affairs, and not to decide any m atter before
A llah and His M essenger ( i|§ ) have decided concerning it, and not
to speak before the Prophet ( ^ ) speaks or to issue any instructions
before he does so.
T his is the real etiquette that is required w ith A llah and His
M essenger («i§), and it is a sign o f a person being blessed and
successful. By m issing out on this, he will miss out on eternal bliss
and everlasting joy.
This is an em phatic prohibition on giving precedence to any view
over that o f the M essenger ( « ||) , for once the Sunnah o f the M essenger
o f A llah («|§) is clear, it becom es obligatory to follow it and give
precedence to it over everything else, no m atter w hat it is.
Then Allah enjoins us to fear him and be pious in general term s,
w hich m eans, as T alq ibn H abeeb said, to do acts o f obedience to
Allah in the light o f clear guidance from Allah, hoping for the reward
o f Allah, and to refrain from disobeying A llah in the light o f clear
guidance from Allah, fearing the punishm ent o f Allah.
«ffor verily Allah is A ll-H earing^ that is, He hears all voices at all
tim es, even in hidden places and locations.

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A ll-K now ing^ that is, He knows w hat is visible and w hat is hidden,
w hat com es first and w hat com es later, w hat is inevitable, w hat is
im possible and w hat is possible.
By m entioning these tw o divine nam es - after forbidding the
believers to decide any m atter before Allah and His M essenger ( ^ )
have decided concerning it and com m anding them to fear Him - Allah
is urging them to com ply with those good com m ands and observe
that etiquette, and w arning against not com plying.
Then Allah (4s) says: «fO you who believe, do not raise your voices
above the voice o f the Prophet, and do not speak loudly to him|9. This
is the etiquette to be observed w hen addressing the M essenger o f
Allah ( j H ) : the one who is addressing him should not raise his voice
above his or speak loudly to him: rather he should low er his voice
and address him politely and gently, with all veneration and respect.
The M essenger ( * ||) is not like one o f them, so they should address
him in a different m anner w hen they speak to him, for he is different
to others w ith regard to his due rights over the U m m ah, and the
obligation to believe in him and love him, w ithout w hich faith cannot
be com plete. By failing to com ply with these instructions, a person
m ay be com m itting a sin and there is the fear that his good deeds
could be nullified without him realising. By the same token, observing
proper etiquette with him is one o f the m eans o f attaining reward and
o f having o n e’s good deeds accepted.
Then Allah praises those who low er their voices in the presence
o f the M essenger o f Allah (*§§), for Allah has tested their hearts and
purified them for piety; in other w ords He has tried and tested them,
and the outcom e o f that is that their hearts becam e fit for piety.
Then Allah promises them forgiveness for their sins, which implies
that they will be protected from evil and harm and will attain the great
reward, the description o f which no one knows except Allah (4s). The
great rew ard includes attaining all that is good. This indicates that
Allah tests people’s hearts with com m ands, prohibitions and trials.

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W hoever adheres to the com m and o f Allah and seeks His pleasure,
hastening to do so and giving it precedence o v er his w him s and
desires, w ill be purified and be fit to have piety in his heart, and his
heart will be fit to accom m odate piety. W hoever is not like that, it is
know n that he is not fit for piety.

0 0

49:4. As for those who called out to you [0 Muhammad] from outside
the apartments, most o f them lack understanding.
49:5. If they had been patient until you came out to them, that would
have been better for them. But Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most
Merciful.

These verses were revealed concerning some Bedouin whom Allah


described as rough, for they w ere m ore likely to be unaw are o f the
limits prescribed by A llah in w hat He has revealed to His M essenger
( i l l ) (9: 97). They cam e in a delegation to the M essenger o f A llah
( j|§ ) , and they found him in his house and the apartm ents o f his
wives, but they w ere im patient and did not have the m anners to wait
until he cam e out. R ather they called out to him: O M uham m ad, O
M uham m ad! (That is, com e out to us).
Allah criticised them for their lack o f reason, because they did not
understand His com m and to observe etiquette with His M essenger
(«!§) and show him respect, for it is a sign o f reason to be polite and
observe etiquette.
A p erson’s m anners are a sign o f reason, and indicate that Allah
intends good for him. H ence A llah says: ^ I f they had been patient
until you cam e out to them , that w ould have been better for them.

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But Allah is O ft-Forgiving, M ost M erciful^ that is, He is forgiving o f


w hat His slaves have com m itted o f sins and lapses o f etiquette; and
He is m ost m erciful tow ards them , as He does not hasten to punish
them for their sins.

0 0

49:6. O you who believe, if a wrongdoer comes to you with any news,
investigate [and verify the facts], lest you harm people out o f
ignorance, then come to regret your actions .35

This also com es under the heading o f the etiquette that people o f
understanding should follow. If an evildoer tells them some news, they
should verify it and not accept it before that, because that involves a
grave risk and falling into sin. If his report is given the sam e status
as one who is truthful and o f good character, you m ay take action or
pass judgem ent on that basis, w hich m ay then result in the killing o f
people or destruction o f property w ithout justification, because o f
that new s, and that w ould becom e a cause for regret. R ather what
m ust be done in the event o f news from a w rongdoer is to check and
verify it.

35 T he Prophet ($%%) had sent al-W aleed ibn ‘Uqbah ( < ^ ) to co llect zakah
from Banu al-M u?taliq , w ith w h o m al-W aleed had so m e ill fe e lin g
stem m in g from even ts that had occurred before Islam. W hen they rode
out to w elc o m e him , he thought that they w ere g o in g to attack him , so he
returned to M adinah and told the Prophet ( ^ ) that they had apostatised.
The Prophet (*§§) sent Khalid ibn al-W aleed (<|§&) to them , and instructed
him to verify the facts and not hasten to attack them . H e found that they
w ere indeed still M uslim s. (al-Qurtubi)

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If other indicators and circum stantial evidence point to it being


true, then it m ay be believed and acted upon but if they indicate that
it is false, then it is to be rejected and not acted upon. This indicates
that new s brought by one who is truthful m ay be accepted, w hereas
news brought by a liar is to be rejected. With regard to new s brought
by a w rongdoer, it depends, as we have m entioned above. Hence the
early generations w ould accept the reports o f m any o f the Kharijites,
who w ere known to be honest, even if they w ere wrongdoers.

0 0

(A-V

49:7. Know that the M essenger o f Allah is among you; if he were


to listen to you in many cases, you would surely suffer for it.
But Allah has made faith dear to you and has made it beautiful
in your hearts, and He has made hateful to you disbelief,
wickedness and sin. Such are the rightly guided,
49:8. by the grace and favour o f Allah. And Allah is All-Knowing,
Most Wise.

That is, let it be known to you all that the M essenger o f Allah («|§)
is am ong you, and he is the wise, kind and generous M essenger w ho
wants w hat is good for you and is sincere tow ards you, but you want
for yourselves evil and harm to which the M essenger (*|§) w ould not
agree. If he w ere to listen to you in m any cases, that w ould put you
through hardship and difficulty, but the M essenger ( i | | ) guides you
to that which is best for you.

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Allah endears faith to you and m akes it fair-seem ing to you, by


m eans o f w hat He has instilled in your hearts o f loving the truth and
preferring it; and by m eans o f w hat he sets out for the truth o f proof
and evidence to testify to its soundness and m ake it appealing to
people’s hearts and minds; and by means o f w hat he does o f enabling
you to turn to Him.
A nd He m akes hateful to you d isb elief and evildoing, nam ely
m ajor sins and lesser sins, by m eans o f w hat He has instilled in your
hearts o f hatred for evil and a lack o f desire to do it; and by m eans
o f what He has set out o f proof and evidence to testify to its corrupt
nature, and the fact that people o f sound nature have no inclination
towards it; and by m eans o f what Allah has instilled in people’s hearts
o f hatred tow ards it.
«(Such)* that is, those to w hom A llah m akes faith fair-seem ing
and endears it to them , and He m akes disbelief, evildoing and sin
hateful to them,
«fare the rightly guided^ that is, they are the ones w ho have sound
know ledge, do righteous deeds and adhere to the true religion and
straight path.
T heir opposites are the m isguided to w hom disbelief, evildoing
and sin are endeared, and faith is m ade hateful to them . It is their
fault, because w hen they did evil, A llah put a seal on their hearts,
and w hen they:
«f...chose to deviate [from the truth], A llah caused their hearts to
deviate [from right guidance]...$> (as-Saff 61. 5)
- because they did not believe in the truth when it cam e to them
the first time, so Allah turned their hearts away.
^by the grace and favour o f Allah]* that is, this good that they have
attained is by the grace and kindness o f Allah tow ards them , not by
their own pow er and strength.

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^A n d A llah is A ll-K now ing, M ost Wise]* that is, He know s who
will be grateful for the blessing and He guides him to attain it, and
He know s w ho will not be grateful for it and for w hom it is not
appropriate, therefore He bestows His grace according to His wisdom.

49:9. If two groups among the believers fight one another, then make
peace between them. If one o f them transgresses against the
other [and rejects all efforts to make peace], then fight [all o f
you] against the one that transgresses, until it complies with the
command o f Allah. Then if it complies, make peace between
them on the basis o f equity and be just, for verily Allah loves
those who are just.
49:10. The believers are but brothers, so make peace between your
[contending] brothers. And fear Allah, so that you may be shown
mercy.

This is an implicit prohibition on the believers transgressing against


one another and fighting one another. If two groups o f believers fight,
then other believers are obliged to try to contain this great evil by
m aking peace betw een them and intervening in the best m anner
w hereby they may achieve peace, and they should take all m easures
that m ay lead to achieving that. If they m ake peace, all w ell and
good, but if ^one o f them transgresses against the other [and rejects
all efforts to m ake peace], then fight [all o f you] against the one

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that transgresses, until it com plies with the com m and o f Allah)? that
is, until it com es back to w hat Allah and His M essenger («|§) have
prescribed o f doing good and refra ining from evil, one o f the gravest
kinds o f w hich is fighting.
^T hen if it com plies, m ake peace betw een them on the basis o f
equity and be ju s t^ - this is a com m and to reconcile and be ju st in
bringing about reconciliation, because reconciliation m ay take place,
but it m ay not be just; rather it m ay be unjust and unfair to one o f
the two disputing parties. This is not the kind o f reconciliation that
is enjoined. There should be no bias tow ards one o f the two groups
because o f kinship, a com m on hom eland, or any other reason that
may cause people to drift aw ay from justice.
^fo r verily Allah loves those who are just)? that is, those who are fair
w hen ju d g in g betw een people and in all that they do, to the extent
that this includes a m an being fair tow ards his wife and children, by
fulfilling their rights.
In the saheeh hadith it says:
«Those who are fair and ju st will be with Allah on thrones o f light,
those w ho are ju st in their judgem ent, and tow ards their families, and
in w hatever they have authority over.» (M uslim )
^T h e believers are but brothers)? this is a bond that A llah has
established between the believers. If anyone in the furthest east or west
is found to believe in Allah, His angels, His Books, His M essengers
and the Last Day, then he is a brother to the believers, with a bond
o f brotherhood that dictates that the believers should love for him
w hat they love for them selves, and hate for him w hat they hate for
them selves. H ence the Prophet ( » ||) said, enjoining the fulfilm ent
o f the rights o f brothers in faith:
«Do not envy one another, do not artificially inflate prices, do not hate
one another, do not undersell one another, and be - O slaves o f Allah
- brothers. The believer is the brother o f his fellow believer; he does
not w rong him, let him down or despise him .» (Bukhari and M uslim)

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A nd he said:
«The believers are like a structure, parts o f which support other parts.»
(Bukhari)
And he interlaced his fingers.
Allah and His M essenger ( j|§ ) have enjoined the believers to fulfil
one another’s rights, and to do that w hich will lead to harmony, love
and understanding am ong them . All o f that confirm s the rights that
they have over one another. Therefore, if fighting occurs am ong them
that would lead to division, hatred and shunning o f one another, let
the believers bring about reconciliation betw een their brothers and
strive to do that w hich will rem ove grudges and ill feeling.
Then A llah com m ands them to fear Him in general term s, and
m akes fu lfilling the rights o f fellow believers and fearing A llah
conditions o f His m ercy, as He says: ^ so that you m ay be show n
m ercy^. If m ercy is attained, then all that is good in this w orld and
the hereafter is also attained. This indicates that not fulfilling the
rights o f fellow believers is one o f the greatest barriers to divine
mercy.
In addition to the above, we also learn that fighting am ong the
believers is contrary to the brotherhood o f faith; hence it is one o f
the w orst o f m ajor sins. Faith and the brotherhood that is based on
it are not dim inished w hen there is fighting, as is the case with other
m ajor sins that are less than the ascription o f partners to Allah. This
is the view o f ahl as-Sunnah w al-jam a‘ah.
We also leam that it is obligatory to reconcile between the believers
on the basis o f justice, and to fight the transgressors until they com e
back to com pliance w ith the com m and o f Allah, and that their wealth
is protected, because A llah has specifically m ade it perm issible to
fight them if they persist in their m isguidance, but He has not m ade
it perm issible to seize their wealth.

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o o

49:11. O you who believe, let not some men ridicule others, for it
may be that they are better than them; and let not some women
ridicule others, for it may be that they are better than them.
Do not speak ill o f one another, and do not call each other by
[offensive] nicknames. What a bad thing it is to be called an
evildoer after having believed. And whoever does not repent,
it is they who are the wrongdoers.

This is an o th er o f the rights that the believers have o v er one


another, that some should not ^ridicule others)? in words or deeds that
are indicative o f looking down on o n e’s M uslim brother, because that
is prohibited and is not permitted, as it is indicative o f self-adm iration
on the part o f the one who is m ocking the other.
It m ay be that the one w ho is ridiculed is b etter than the one
w ho is ridiculing him , as is usually the case, because m ockery is
only a reflection o f a bad attitude and bad m anners, and all bad
characteristics. Hence the Prophet ( « ||) said:
«It is sufficient evil for a m an to look down on his M uslim brother.»
(M uslim )
Then A llah says: ^D o not speak ill o f one another)? that is, do
not criticise one another. That criticism m ay be verbal or by m eans
o f gestures; both are prohibited and carry a w arning o f hell, as Allah
( 4g) says elsewhere:
f|W oe to every backbiter, fault-finder.)» (al-Humazah 104: 1)

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The literal meaning o f this verse is “Do not speak ill o f yourselves”,
because the believers should be like one body, and because if you
criticise som eone else, he will inevitably criticise you, and thus you
will have brought it upon yourself.
^and do not call each other by [offensive] nicknames)? that is, no
one o f you should em barrass his brother by giving him an insulting
nicknam e that he w ould not like to be called by. As for nicknam es
that are not offensive, they are not included in this.
*(What a bad thing it is to be called an evildoer after having
believed)? that is, what a bad thing it is to change after having believed
and carried out the duties o f faith, by turning away from the commands
and prohibitions o f faith and becom ing rebellious evildoers, calling
people by offensive nicknam es.
f[And w hoever does not repent, it is they who are the wrongdoers)?.
This is w hat is required o f the individual: to repent to A llah (4g) and
try to settle m atters w ith his M uslim brother by asking him to pardon
and forgive him , and to praise him in order to m ake up for having
criticised or insulted him.
<|And whoever does not repent, it is they who are the wrongdoers)?.
Thus people are o f two types: those who w rong themselves and do not
repent, and those who repent and succeed. There is no third category.

49:12. O you who believe, avoid suspicion in most cases, because in


some cases suspicion is a sin. Do not spy on one another, and
do not backbite one another. Would any o f you like to eat the

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flesh o f his dead brother? You would surely abhor it. So fear
Allah; verily Allah is Accepting o f repentance, Most Merciful.

A llah forbids suspicion in m ost cases, and thinking ill o f the


believers, ^ b ecau se in som e cases suspicion is a sin ^. E xam ples
include suspicion that is not based on facts and evidence, and thinking
ill o f a person, w hich usually leads to saying and doing m any things
that are prohibited. That is because harbouring bad thoughts does not
usually stop there; rather the bad thoughts persist until one says or
does som ething that is not appropriate.
That also includes thinking ill o f a Muslim, hating him and showing
enm ity towards him. W hat is enjoined is the opposite o f that.
^D o not spy on one another}? that is, do not seek out the faults
o f the M uslim s. Leave the M uslim alone and pay no attention to his
private affairs w hich, if they w ere to be investigated, there w ould
appear o f them that which is not appropriate.
^an d do not backbite one another}?. Backbiting, as the Prophet
( 5|§ ) said, means:
«...saying about your brother som ething that he dislikes, even if it is
true.» (M uslim )
Then Allah gives an off-putting likeness o f backbiting, as He says:
dWould any o f you like to eat the flesh o f his dead brother? You would
surely abhor it^. Backbiting him is likened to eating his flesh when he
is dead, which is extrem ely abhorrent and repugnant. So ju st as you
would hate to eat his flesh, especially w hen he is dead and lifeless, so
too you should hate to backbite him and eat his flesh when he is alive.
^S o fear A llah; verily A llah is A ccepting o f repentance, M ost
M erciful^. Accepting o f repentance means that He guides and enables
His slave to repent, then He accepts his repentance. H e is M ost
M erciful to His slaves, as He calls them to that w hich will benefit
them and accepts their repentance. This verse is indicative o f the stem

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w arning against backbiting and highlights the fact that backbiting is a


m ajor sin, because Allah likens it to eating the flesh o f a dead person,
w hich is a m ajor sin.

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49:13. O humankind, verily We created you from one man and one
woman, and made you into nations and tribes so that you may
recognise one another .36 Verily the noblest o f you before Allah
is the most righteous among you. Verily Allah is All-Knowing,
All-Aware.

Here Allah (-ig) tells us that He created the sons o f A dam from
a single origin and they are all o f one race. They all com e from one
male and one female; they are all descended from Adam and H aw w a’,
from w hom A llah spread countless m en and w om en far and wide (4:
I). He divided them and m ade them into nations and tribes, sm all
and great, so that they may recognise one another. That is because, if
each one o f them was only known by h im self (w ithout his roots and
origin), that recognising o f one another - w hich leads to supporting
one another, cooperating with one another, inheriting from one another
and fulfilling the rights o f relatives - w ould not take place. But Allah
made them into nations and tribes so that these things and others, that
are based on recognising one another and know ing people’s lineage,

36 The purpose behind m aking hum ankind into nations and tribes is so that
th ey m ay k n ow o n e a n o th er’s o rig in s and lin e a g e for the p u rp ose o f
identification and for the fu lfilm en t o f rights and duties that are based
on blood ties, but they should not boast about their lin eage or use it as a
m eans o f claim in g superiority over others.

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may be fulfilled. But nobility and dignity are connected to piety and
righteousness. The noblest o f them before Allah are those who are the
m ost righteous, which m eans those who are the m ost obedient and
who m ost keep aw ay from sin, not those who have the m ost relatives
or are the noblest in lineage.
But Allah (te ) is A ll-K now ing, All-Aware. He know s who truly
fears Allah, both outw ardly and inwardly, as opposed to those who
do that outw ardly only, and He will requite each as he deserves.
This verse indicates that know ing people’s lineage is som ething
that is required according to Sharia, because Allah has m ade them
nations and tribes for that purpose.

49:14. The Bedouin say: We believe. Say: You have not [yet] believed.
Rather you should say: We have submitted [in Islam], for faith
has not yet entered your hearts. But if you obey Allah and His
Messenger, He will not detract from the reward o f any o f your
deeds. Verily Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.

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49:15. The believers are only those who believe in Allah and His
Messenger, then do not doubt, and strive and fight in the cause
o f Allah, offering their wealth and their lives. It is they whose
faith is true.
49:16. Say: Will you inform Allah about your faith, when Allah knows
all that is in the heavens and all that is on earth, for Allah has
knowledge o f all things?
49:17. They think that they have done you a favour by embracing Islam.
Say: Do not regard your embracing Islam as a favour to me.
Rather it is Allah Who has done you a favour by guiding you to
faith, if you are telling the truth [in your claim to be believers],
49:18. Verily Allah knows all that is unseen in the heavens and on earth,
and Allah sees well all that you do.

H ere A llah (4g) tells us o f w hat w as said by the B edouin w ho


entered Islam at the tim e o f the M essenger o f A llah (^)§) w ithout
u n d erstan d in g p roperly and w ith o u t doing w hat is d ictated and
required by faith, yet despite that they said ^W e believe)?, claim ing
to believe in a perfect sense, fulfilling all the requirem ents o f faith,
w hich is w hat is im plied by their statem ent. A llah instructed His
M essenger ( ^ ) to refute them , as He said: ^Say: You have not [yet]
believed}? that is, do not claim to have attained perfect faith, both
inw ardly and outwardly.
^R ather you should say: We have subm itted [in Islam ])? that is, we
have entered Islam; and you should lim it it to that.
The reason for that is that ^faith has not yet entered your hearts)?;
rather you have believed out o f fear or hope (in w orldly term s) and
the like. This is the reason for your belief, and therefore you have not
yet tasted the sweetness o f faith in your hearts.
^fo r faith has not yet entered your hearts)? that is, at the tim e when
you said those words. It is as if it w ere an indication o f w hat w ould

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happen to them later on, for A llah blessed m any o f them with real
faith and jihad in His cause.
f)But if you obey A llah and His M essenger)? by doing good or
refraining from evil
^H e will not detract from the reward o f any o f your deeds^ that is, He
will not detract even an atom ’s w eight from it; rather He will reward
you in full, in the m ost perfect manner, and you will not m iss out on
any part o f it, small or great.
^ Verily Allah is Oft-Forgiving, M ost Merciful)? that is, He is forgiving
to the one who repents and turns to Him, and m ost m erciful to him,
as He accepts his repentance.
^T he believers^ that is, the true believers
^are only those w ho believe in A llah and His M essenger, then do
not doubt, and strive and fight in the cause o f Allah, offering their
wealth and their lives)? that is, those who com bine faith and jihad in
His cause, because if a person strives against the disbelievers, that is
indicative o f com plete faith in his heart, for w hoever strives against
others in support o f Islam and striving to establish its laws, it is more
likely that he will strive against him self to establish Islam and its laws
in his own life, because if a person has no m otivation for jihad, that
is indicative o f the w eakness o f his faith.
Allah (4g) has stipulated that there should be no doubts in faith,
because beneficial faith is certain and firm b elief in that which Allah
has enjoined us to believe in, and is not influenced by doubt in any
way.
^It is they w hose faith is true)? that is, it is they who confirm their
faith with their good deeds. C laim ing to be sincere in any m atter is a
very serious claim that requires one to produce p ro o f and evidence,
and the m ost serious m atter is claim ing to have faith, w hich is the
basis o f bliss and eternal triumph. W hoever claim s to have faith and
carry out the duties required thereby is the true believer; if a person

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is not like that, it will be know n that he is not sincere in his claim,
and he will never benefit from his claim.
Faith in the heart cannot be seen by anyone except A llah (^g), so
confirm ing its existence or otherw ise is akin to inform ing A llah o f
w hat is in the heart. This is poor etiquette and thinking ill o f Him.
Hence He says: *[Say: Will you inform A llah about your faith, w hen
Allah knows all that is in the heavens and all that is on earth, for Allah
has knowledge o f all things?^ This encom passes all things, including
w hat is in the heart o f faith or disbelief, righteousness or wickedness.
A llah (^g) knows all o f that, and will requite people accordingly; if
it is good, then the outcom e will be good, and if it is bad, then the
outcom e will be bad.
This is talking about those w ho claim to have faith w hen they
do not. Either they are presum ing to inform Allah, w hen it is known
that He has know ledge o f all things, or th eir aim in saying these
w ords is to give a rem inder o f favours done to His M essenger (ji§ ),
as if they had given him things that w ere not in their ow n interests;
rather they served his w orldly interests! This is a kind o f pride and
boasting about things that it is inappropriate for them to boast about
to the M essenger ( # | ) , because it is A llah (4g) W ho had bestowed
those favours upon them.
Just as Allah (-}g) bestowed favours upon them in term s o f creating
them , granting them provision and bestow ing blessings upon them
both visible and hidden, the divine favour o f guidance to Islam and
the bestow al o f faith are greater than everything else. Hence Allah
(3s) says: ^They think that they have done you a favour by em bracing
Islam. Say: Do not regard your em bracing Islam as a favour to me.
R ather it is A llah W ho has done you a favour by guiding you to faith,
if you are telling the truth [in your claim to be believers]^.
^Verily Allah knows all that is unseen in the heavens and on earth]*
that is, He knows the hidden m atters in both realm s that are concealed
from people, such as w hat is in the depths o f the sea or in the m iddle

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o f the w ilderness, and w hat is covered by the night or hidden by the


day. He knows the drops o f rain and the grains o f sand, what is hidden
in people’s hearts and all subtle issues.
^ ...N o t a leaf falls but He knows it; there is no grain in the darkest
bow els o f the earth, nor anything fresh or dry, but it is [inscribed] in
a clear record.^ (al-An ‘dm 6: 59)
^and Allah sees well all that you do)?; He is recording your deeds
and will requite you for them in full, as dictated by His encom passing
m ercy and utm ost wisdom .

T his is the end o f the com m entary on Soorat al-Hujurat.


All praise and thanks are for A llah, and may the b lessin gs and
peace o f A llah be upon Prophet M uham m ad ( 3 i§ ) , his fam ily, and
his C om panions abundantly until the D ay o f Judgem ent.

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50.

Soorat Qaf
(M akki)

In the name o f Allah,


the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful

& J t £ e j? @

3 “J > —) X k |g 5

50:1. Qaf. By the Glorious Q ur’an [you, O Muhammad, are indeed


the Messenger o f Allah],
50:2. But they deem it strange that a wam er has come to them from
among themselves, and the disbelievers say: This is a strange
thing indeed!
50:3. What! When we have died and have turned into dust [will we
be brought back to life]? That is farfetched indeed!
50:4. Indeed We know what the earth consumes o f them; with Us is
a record that preserves everything.

H ere A llah sw ears by the G lorious Q u r’an that contains deep


m eanings and great concepts, discusses various issues and brings

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m uch blessing (barakah). The w ord translated here as ^Glorious)?


indicates that it has num erous, great attributes.
The best thing to be described in such term s is this Q u r’an, which
contains know ledge o f the earlier and later generations, and speaks
with the highest and m ost perfect eloquence, the m ost beautiful and
concise words, the m ost com prehensive and beautiful meanings. This
m akes it obligatory to follow it in the m ost perfect manner, to hasten
to im plem ent its teachings, and to show gratitude to Allah for blessing
us with it.
But m ost people do not appreciate the blessings o f Allah as they
should, hence Allah (4c) says: «(But they)? that is, those who disbelieve
in the M essenger ( i | | ) ^deem it strange that a w am er has com e to
them from am ong themselves)? that is, to warn them o f that which
will harm them and instruct them to do that w hich will benefit them,
and he is one o f their own kind, so that they will be able to learn from
him, and they know his character and his sincerity.
They deem ed strange som ething that they should not have found
strange at all. Rather one should w onder about the rationality o f those
who deem it strange.
^and the disbelievers)? whose disbelief and rejection m ade them
do that; it was not because o f any lack o f intelligence or w isdom on
their part
^say: This is a strange thing indeed!)? That is, it is m ost odd. This
attitude o f theirs stem m ed from one o f two things:
Either they genuinely found it strange, which w ould be indicative
o f extrem e ignorance and weak reasoning on their part, like the insane
person who finds the w ords o f the sane person strange, or the cow ard
who finds it strange that a courageous horsem an would m eet others
in battle, or the m iser who finds the generosity o f generous people
strange. W hat does it m atter if som eone like that finds it strange?
This attitude is indicative o f nothing but extrem e w rongdoing and
ignorance.

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O r they found it strange yet knew that they w ere wrong. This is
one o f the w orst kinds o f w rongdoing, because it stem s from nothing
but stubbornness.
Then A llah m entions what they found so strange, as He tells us
that they said: ^W hat! W hen we have died and have turned into dust
[will we be brought back to life]? That is farfetched indeed!^ Thus
they com pared the m ight o f the One W ho has pow er over all things
and is perfect in all respects with the pow er o f the hum an being who
is in need and is helpless in all respects. They com pared the ignorant
person w ho has no know ledge w ith the O ne W ho has know ledge
o f all things, W ho know s w hat the earth consum es o f their bodies
during their stay in al-barzakh and has recorded in His B ook which
is w ith Him , protected from any change or alteration, all that will
happen to them in life and in death. This is indicative o f His perfect
and com prehensive know ledge - that no one could have except Him
- and that He has the ability to bring the dead back to life.

0 0
50:5. Rather they denied the truth when it came to them, so they are
in a state o f confusion .37

cjRatherp the words that they utter stem from stubbornness and
rejection o f truth concerning w hich there is no doubt
^w hen it cam e to them , so they are in a state o f confusion]* that is,
they are uncertain and confused, and cannot settle on anything or
agree on som ething to say regarding the Prophet (j|§ ). Som etim es

37 B ecau se they denied that M uham m ad (S H ) w as the M essen ger o f A llah ,


they w ere confused as to what he was; hence they described him variously
as a sorcerer, poet or madm an.

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they say that he is a sorcerer, som etim es they say that he is insane,
and som etim es they say that he is a poet.
Similarly, they had various views concerning the Q u r’an, each one
o f them saying w hat he thought on the basis o f his own corrupt view.
This is applicable to everyone who rejects the truth: he is confused,
does not know what direction to take, and cannot settle on anything.
T herefore you see him contradicting himself.
By the sam e token, the one w ho follow s the truth and believes
in it is steadfast, his path is straightforw ard, and his deeds confirm
his words.

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50:6. Have they not looked at the heaven above them - how We have
constructed it and adorned it, and there are no flaws in it?
50:7. And the earth We have spread out, and set therein mountains
standing firm, and caused to grow therein beautiful plants of
every kind.
50:8. All that is [a source of] insight and a reminder for every slave
who turns to Allah [and reflects upon His signs].
50:9. We send down from the sky blessed rain, with which We cause
to grow gardens and the grain that is harvested,
50:10. and lofty date palms with spathes containing tightly-packed
flower-clusters ,38

38 The flowers of the date palm initially appear along small branches that =

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50:11. as provision for people, and We give life thereby to a dead land.
In like manner will be the resurrection.

H aving described the situation o f the disbelievers and explained


why they are blam eworthy, A llah fig ) now calls them to look at His
signs in the universe, so that they m ay reflect and see the conclusions
to w hich they point, as He says:
ejHave they not looked at the heaven above them)* that is, looking at
it does not require any effort or travel; rather it is very easy.
Let them see ^how We have constructed it)* like a sm ooth dome,
w ell-built and adorned with stars, stretching from one horizon to the
other in the m ost beautiful manner. No defect, gap or flaws can be
seen in it. A llah has m ade it a ro o f for the people o f the earth, and has
placed in it things that serve essential interests for them.
«fand the earth)*, how ^W e have spread)* it ^out)* and m ade it
spacious so that every anim al can settle on it, rest on it and find all
that it needs. Allah has m ade it stable with m ountains, so that it will
not shake or sway.
sfand caused to grow therein beautiful plants o f every kind)* that is,
every kind o f plant that is pleasant to the eye and brings delight and
jo y to the observer, as food for the sons o f A dam and their livestock,
and bringing other benefits.
Am ong those benefits, Allah singles out for m ention the gardens
that contain delicious fruits, such as grapes, pom egranates, citrons,
apples and other kinds o f fruit. And He m entions lofty date palm s,
w hich give lasting benefits, and w hich reach tow ards the sky until
they reach a height that m any other trees do not reach. From the

= are enclosed in a spathe or sheath that protects the delicate flowers from
intense heat in the arid regions where date palms grow. As the flowers
mature, the spathe splits open, exposing the flower clusters for the purpose
of pollination.

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spathes containing tightly-packed flow er-clusters com e provision,


nourishm ent, staple food and fruits for people; they eat som e and
store som e for them selves and their flocks.
Similarly, Allah brings forth by m eans o f the rain and the rivers
that flow on the face o f the earth and beneath it as a result thereof,
«fthe grain that is harvested)? that is, crops that are harvested, such as
wheat, barley, com , rice, m illet and others.
Looking at these things «fis [a source of] insight)? that allows one
to see after having been blind due to ignorance
^and a reminder)? o f that w hich is beneficial in both spiritual and
worldly terms. Thus one is reminded o f what Allah and His Messengers
have told us. But that is not for everyone; rather it is for ^every slave
who turns to Allah)? that is, everyone who turns to Him with love,
fear and hope, and responds to His call.
A s for the one w ho disbelieves or turns aw ay, the signs and
w arnings are o f no avail to people who do not believe.
In conclusion, everything that the heaven contains o f dazzling
creation and w ell-built construction is indicative o f the perfect might
o f Allah (4s).
W hat it contains o f beauty, precision, and brilliant design and
creation indicates that Allah is M ost Wise, and that He has knowledge
o f all things.
W hat it contains o f benefits and things that serve the interests
o f people are indicative o f the m ercy and generosity o f A llah that
encom pass all things.
W hat it contains o f mighty creations and amazing systems indicate
that Allah (4s) is the One, the Unique, the Eternal, Who has no spouse
or offspring and there is none like unto Him. No w orship, hum ility
or love should be directed to any but Him.
W hat it contains o f the m eans o f reviving the earth after its death
indicates that Allah will give life to the dead in order to requite them

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for their deeds. Hence He says: *jand We give life thereby to a dead
land. In like m anner will be the resurrection^.
Having rem inded them o f these heavenly and earthly signs, Allah
now w arns them lest there befall them w hat befell other nations o f
punishm ent, and tells them that they should not persist in their current
disbelief, lest there befall them w hat befell their fellow disbelievers,
as He says:

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50:12. Before them the people o f Nooh, the people o f the well ,39 and
Thamood also disbelieved,
50:13. [as did] ‘Ad, Pharaoh and the brethren o f Loot,
50:14. and the dwellers o f the Wood, and the people o f Tubba '.40 All
o f them rejected the M essengers, and My warning was duly
fu lfilled .

50:15. Did We fail in the first creation [so that they think that We are
unable to recreate them on the Day o f Resurrection]? Rather
they are in doubt about the resurrection.

That is, those nations who cam e before them rejected their noble
M essengers and P rophets, such as N ooh, w hose people rejected

39 T hey w ere idol-w orshippers to w hom A llah sent H is Prophet S h u ‘ayb,


but they rejected his call. W hilst they w ere around the w e ll, it collap sed
and they and their d w ellin g s w ere sw a llo w ed up by the earth. (an-N asafi;
al-B aydaw i)
40 Tubba': a hereditary title o f the kin gs o f Yem en.

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him. T ham ood rejected Salih, ‘Ad rejected Hood, the people o f Loot
rejected Loot, the dw ellers o f the Wood rejected S hu‘ayb, and the
people o f Tubba‘ - T ubba 1 was the title o f every king o f Yemen in
ancient times, before Islam - rejected the M essenger whom Allah sent
to them. A llah does not tell us who that M essenger was, or which o f
the kings who bore the title o f T ubba‘ is referred to here, because that
- and Allah knows best - was well known to the Arabs, for the people
o f Yemen were the original Arabs whose stories w ere not unknown to
the Arabs, especially stories such as this significant event.
All o f these people rejected the M essengers w hom Allah sent to
them , so they deserved the w arning and punishm ent o f Allah.
A nd you w ho disb eliev e in M uham m ad (s |§ ) are not better
than them , and their M essengers are not dearer to A llah than your
M essenger ( « |t) , so bew are o f com m itting their sin, lest the sam e
fate befall you as befell them.
Then A llah (-te) cites the first creation as p ro o f for the second
creation, w hich is the resurrection.
Just as it is He W ho created them from nothing, in like m anner
He will recreate them after they have died and turned into dust and
bones. Therefore He says:
«[Did We fail^ that is, were We incapable or did Our strength falter
«fin the first creation^? That is not the case; it was not beyond Us
and We did not fail in that; they (the d isbelievers) do not doubt
that.
^R ather they are in doubt about the resurrection)?. This is what
they are in doubt and confused about, even though there is no room
for confusion, because recreating is easier than the initial creation,
as A llah (ig ) says elsewhere:
«flt is He W ho originates creation then repeats it, and that is [even]
easier for Him...)? (ar-Room 30: 27)

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(j) S-f~ J*D ^ J»y*j l>jA*jj Ailj^

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50:16. We have created man, and We know what his soul whispers
within him, for We are closer to him than his jugular vein,
50:17. when the two recording angels record [his deeds], constantly
accompanying him, one on his right, the other on his left.
50:18. Not a word does he utter but there is with him a watcher, ready
to record it.

Here Allah 0 c ) tells us that He is the only C reator o f hum ankind,


m ale and fem ale, and that He knows m an’s circum stances, w hat he
keeps in his heart, and his thoughts.
He is ^closer to him than his jugular vein^, w hich is the closest
thing to a person; the ju g u la r veins are the veins on both sides o f
the neck. This is a rem inder to m an to rem em ber that his C reator is
w atching him; He sees w hat is in his heart and m ind and is close to
him in all situations. So he should feel shy, lest Allah see him where He
forbade him to be, or He not see him where He com m anded him to be.
Similarly, he should bear in m ind the angels, the noble scribes;
he should respect them and bew are o f doing or saying anything that
m ay be w ritten down o f things that are displeasing to the Lord o f the
worlds. Hence He says:
^w h e n the tw o reco rd ing angels reco rd [his deeds], co nstantly
accom panying him]? that is, they record all o f a person’s deeds
«fone on his right)* w ho records his good deeds, and the other ^on
his left^ w ho records his bad deeds. Each o f them is ^con stan tly
accom panying him ^, ready to do the w ork that is assigned to him.

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«jNot a w ord does he utter^, good or bad, ^but there is with him a
w atcher, ready to record it)? that is, he is w atching him and is always
present with him. This is like the verses in w hich Allah (tfc) says:
dW hile indeed there are w atchers appointed over you, honourable
scribes, who know all that you d o .’# (al-Infitar 82:10-12)

50:19. The throes o f death will bring the truth [before his eyes]: This
is what you have been trying to avoid.
50:20. And the Trumpet will be blown; that will be the day whereof
warning [had been given].
50:21. Every soul will come, accompanied by [an angel] to drive him
on and another to bear witness.
50:22. [It will be said:] You were heedless o f this; now We have
removed the veil for you and your vision today is keen.

There will com e to this heedless person who rejects the signs o f
Allah ^T he throes o f d ea th s which ^w ill bring the truth [before his
eyes]# that cannot be w arded o ff or avoided.
^T his is w hat you have been trying to avoid)? that is, w hat you have
been trying to delay or run aw ay from.
^A n d the Trum pet will be blow n; that will be the day w h ereo f
w arning [had been g iv en ])? that is, the day w hen there w ill befall
the w ro n g d o ers the p u n ish m en t o f w hich A llah w arned them ,
and there w ill com e to the believers the rew ard that He prom ised
them.

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^E very soul will com e, accom panied by [an angel] to drive him
on)?, driving him to the place o f standing, and he will not be able to
refuse
^and another to bear witness)? and testify to all his deeds, both good
and bad. This is indicative o f A llah ’s care for His slaves, and that
He records their deeds and will requite them justly for them. This is
som ething that one m ust bear in mind.
But m ost people are heedless, therefore A llah says:
^[It will be said:] You w ere heedless o f th is^ that is, this will be said
on the Day o f Resurrection to those who turned away and disbelieved,
by way o f rebuke, criticism and blame. In other words: you disbelieved
in this and did not act upon it, but *(now We have rem oved the veil
for you)? that covered your heart, so that you slept a great deal and
persisted in your heedlessness.
«fand your vision today is keen)?. He will look at that w hich will alarm
and frighten him o f all kinds o f punishm ent and vengeance.
All this m ay be addressed by Allah to the individual, because in
this w orld he is heedless o f the purpose for which he w as created, but
on the Day o f Resurrection he will be alert to that and will aw aken
from his sleep, but that will be at a tim e w hen he will not be able to
m ake am ends or m ake up for lost time. All o f this is an alert from
Allah to His slaves, to warn them by telling them o f what will happen
to the disbelievers on that m om entous day.

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50:23. His companion [the angel who recorded his deeds] will say:
Here is [the record o f his deeds] ready with me.
50:24. [It will be said to the two angels:] Throw into hell every obstinate
disbeliever,
50:25. every withholder o f good, transgressor, doubter,
50:26. who set up another god besides Allah. Throw him into the severe
punishment.
50:27. His [devil] companion will say: Our Lord, it was not I who
misled him; he him self had already gone far astray.
50:28. Allah will say: Do not argue with one another in My presence
when I had already sent you warning.
50:29. My word cannot be changed, and I am never unjust to My slaves.

^H is companion)* that is, the com panion o f this disbeliever who


turned away, from am ong the angels, whom Allah appointed to watch
over him and record his deeds. He w ill bring him on the D ay o f
Resurrection, and he will also bring his deeds, and say:
«(Here is [the record o f his deeds] ready w ith me)* that is, I have
brought that which was entrusted to me, the record o f his deeds for
w hich he will be requited.
It will be said regarding those w ho deserve hell: ^T hrow into hell
every obstinate disbeliever)* that is, everyone w ho disbelieved a great
deal, stubbornly rejected the signs o f Allah, com m itted m any sins,
and had the audacity to transgress the sacred limits o f Allah.
^every w ithholder o f good)* that is, who w ithheld the good that
he had, the greatest o f w hich is b elief in Allah, His angels, His Books
and His M essengers; and he w ithheld the benefit o f his w ealth and
physical effort
^ tra n sg re sso r^ w ho transgressed ag ainst the slaves o f A llah and
transgressed His sacred limits
«(doubter^ that is, he doubted the prom ise and w arning o f Allah, so he
had no faith or good deeds to his credit. R ather A llah describes him

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as a disbeliever, transgressor, doubter and covetous, and as having


taken gods besides the M ost Gracious. Hence Allah says:
<|who set up another god besides A llah ^ that is, he w orshipped
others alongside Him that had no power to benefit or harm themselves,
or to cause death, give life or resurrect.
^T hrow him ^, O you tw o com panion angels
sfinto the severe punishment)? w hich is the greatest, w orst and m ost
terrible o f punishm ents.
^H is [devil] com panion will say)?, disavow ing him and blam ing
him for his sin
*[Our Lord, it was not I w ho m isled him)? because I had no pow er
o v er him , and no p ro o f o r evidence; rather he w ent far astray, so
he w ent astray by his ow n choice. T his is like w h at A llah says
elsew here:
dA nd Shaytan will say, when the m atter is decided: Verily, Allah gave
you a true prom ise; I also gave you prom ises, but I betrayed you. I
had no pow er over you, except that I called you and you responded
to me. So do not blam e me; blam e yo u rselv es...)? (Ibraheem 14:22)
A llah (3e) will say, responding to their dispute: ^D o not argue
with one another in M y presence)? that is, there is no benefit in your
disputing w ith one another in M y presence «[when)? in fact ^1 had
already sent you w arning^ that is, M y M essengers cam e to you with
clear signs and proof, and definitive evidence, and thus M y p ro o f
was established against you and you have no argum ent. N ow you
have com e to Me with the deeds that you did and the tim e has come
for requital.
«fMy w ord cannot be changed)? that is, it is not possible to change
w hat A llah has said, for no one is truer in speech than Allah,
ffand I am never unjust to M y slaves)?; rather I requite them according
to their deeds, good or bad. N othing is added to their bad deeds and
nothing is detracted from their good deeds.

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* o

(ro-r. :j
50:30. [Warn them of] the day when We will say to hell: Are you full?
and it will say: Can there be any more to come?
50:31. Paradise will be brought within sight o f the righteous, not far
off.
50:32. [It will be said:] This is what you were prom ised; it is for
everyone who constantly turned [to Us] and remained dutiful,
50:33. and feared the Most Gracious unseen, and came with a sincere
heart.
50:34. Enter here in peace; this is the day o f eternity.
50:35. There they will have all that they wish for, and with Us there is
yet more.

Here Allah (4&) says, to alarm His slaves: «[[Wam them of] the
day w hen We will say to hell: Are you full?^ That is because o f the
large num ber o f people who will be thrown into it.
^and it will say: Can there be any m ore to com e?^ That is, it will
keep asking for more evildoers and sinners, out o f anger for its Lord’s
sake and in fury against the disbelievers.
Allah (tfe) has prom ised to fill it, as He says elsew here:
«(...I will certainly fill hell w ith jinn and m en, all together.^ (as-Sajdah
32: 13)
T hat will continue until the Lord o f G lory will place His holy
Foot - w hich cannot be com pared to anything in creation - on it,

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w hereupon it will shrink into itself and w ill say: Enough, enough!
M eaning: I have had enough and I am full.
^Paradise will be brought within sight o f the righteous, not far off)*
that is, it will be brought close enough to look and see w hat it contains
o f eternal delights, jo y and happiness. R ather it w ill be brought close
for those who feared their Lord and avoided associating others with
Him in both a m inor and m ajor sense, w ho obeyed the com m ands o f
their Lord and subm itted to Him.
It will be said to them by way o f congratulations: ^This is what you
were prom ised; it is for everyone w ho constantly turned [to Us])* that
is, this paradise and w hat it contains o f all that o n e’s soul m ay desire
and that m ay delight the eyes, is w hat A llah prom ised to everyone
who constantly turned to Him and cam e back to A llah at all tim es, by
rem em bering Him, loving Him, seeking His help, calling upon Him,
fearing Him and putting his hope in Him.
^ and rem ained dutiful)* that is, he adhered to w hat A llah enjoined
upon him, obeyed Him sincerely and carried out his duties towards
Him perfectly, keeping to His limits.
^ an d feared the M ost G racious unseen)* that is, he feared Him
on the basis o f his know ledge o f his Lord, in hope o f His mercy, and
feared Allah unseen in all situations, even w hen people cannot see
Him. This is true fear o f Allah.
As for fearing Him in the presence o f others, when they are looking
at one, this is showing o ff and seeking reputation, and is not indicative
o f fear o f Allah. R ather beneficial fear o f Allah is fear o f Him when
one is alone and when one is w ith others.
Fearing A llah unseen stem s from b elief in the unseen, as opposed
to believing w hen one sees som e m atters o f the unseen, in w hich
case faith and fear o f Allah becom e inevitable and are not voluntary,
because the person will see with his own eyes the punishm ent and
the signs o f Allah.

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^ an d cam e with a sincere heart)? such a person is described as


turning to his Lord and as being m otivated to please Him.
It will be said to these pious and righteous people: «(Enter here
in peace)? that is, enter it in peace, safe from troubles and ills, and
secure from all distressing m atters. There will be no end to their bliss
and there will be nothing to spoil it.
«{this is the day o f eternity)? w hich will never end; there will be no
death and nothing to spoil it.
^T here they will have all that they w ish for)? that is, everything
that they want, they will attain.
A nd in addition to that, they w ill have «fyet more)?, nam ely a
rew ard bestow ed upon them by the M ost Gracious, M ost M erciful,
such as no eye has seen, no ear has heard, nor has it ever crossed the
m ind o f any human.
T he greatest and best o f that w ill be gazing upon the noble
C ountenance o f A llah and the jo y o f hearing His w ords and being
close to Him. We ask A llah (3s) to m ake us am ong them.

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50:36. How many nations We destroyed before them [Quraysh] who


were stronger in power than them! They ventured through many
lands, but did they find any escape?
50:37. Verily in that is a reminder for anyone who understands and
listens attentively with full presence o f mind.

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Here A llah (:3c) says, w arning the polytheists w ho rejected the


M essenger (J§ |): ^H ow m any nations We destroyed)* that is, We
destroyed m any nations
^b efo re them [Q uraysh] w ho w ere stronger in pow er than them)*
that is, they w ere m ore pow erful than them and left a greater m ark
on the land.
Hence He says: «[They ventured through m any lands)* that is, in
various lands they built strong fortresses and tall buildings, planted
trees, dug channels, form ed the land, and constructed and destroyed
much.
But when they rejected the M essengers o f A llah and denied His
signs, A llah afflicted them w ith a painful and severe punishm ent.
«$but did they find any escape?)* T hey had no escape from the
punishm ent o f A llah w hen it befell them , and they had no one to
save them . T heir strength, w ealth and children did not avail them
anything.
^V erily in th at is a rem in d er fo r anyone w ho understands)*
th at is, w ho has a m ind that is active, alert and sm art, and w ho
has pure intentions. Such a person, if he sees any o f A llah ’s signs,
w ill pay heed to them and w ill b enefit from them and be able to
advance.
The sam e applies to one who listens attentively to the revelations
o f Allah, and listens to them by way o f seeking guidance from them,
w ith presence o f mind. For such a person there is also a rem inder,
exhortation, healing and guidance.
But as for the one w ho turns aw ay and does not lend an ear to
the revelations, they w ill not benefit him at all, because he is not
receptive and the w isdom o f Allah did not dictate that such a person
should be guided.

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50:38. Verily We created the heavens and the earth, and all that is
between them, in six days and no toil or weariness touched Us.
50:39. So bear patiently what they say, and glorify and praise your
Lord before the rising o f the sun and before [its] setting,
50:40. and glorify Him in the night and after the prayers.

H ere A llah (4c) tells us o f His great m ight and His w ill that is
always done, by m eans o f w hich He brought into being the m ighty
creations, ^ th e heavens and the earth, and all that is between them,
in six days)?, the first o f which was Sunday and the last o f which was
Friday, w ithout any toil, w eariness, exhaustion or fatigue.
And it is m ore appropriate that the One W ho brought them into
being - despite their great size - should be able to give life to the dead.
^S o bear patiently w hat they say^ o f criticism and rejection o f the
m essage you have brought. D istract yourself from them by focusing
on your Lord and glorifying H im , at the beginning and end o f the
day, and during the night and after the prayers, for remem bering Allah
( 4 l ) consoles and brings com fort to the heart, and helps one to be
patient.

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50:41. Listen! On the day when the Caller will call out from a place
nearby,
50:42. the day when they will hear the [second] Trumpet blast in truth,
that will be the Day o f Resurrection.
50:43. Verily it is We Who give life and cause death, and unto Us is
the return [of all].
50:44. On the day when the earth will be rent asunder for them as they
hasten forth [from their graves], that will be a gathering that is
easy for Us.
50:45. We know best what they say, and you are not sent to compel
them to believe. But admonish with the Q ur’an those who fear
My warning.

^L isten^ with all your heart to the call o f the caller, namely Israfeel
(iS U , w hen he blow s the Trum pet ^from a place nearby)* that is,
near to people.
^the day w hen they will hear the [second] Trum pet blast in truth)*
that is, all creatures will hear that frightening blast
^in truth)i concerning which there is no doubt whatsoever.
^that will be the Day o f Resurrection)* when all people will emerge
from their graves, which A llah alone, W ho has pow er over all things,
will bring about. Hence He says: ^Verily it is We W ho give life and
cause death, and unto Us is the return [o f all]. On the day when the
earth will be rent asunder for them)* that is, for the dead, ^as they
hasten forth [from their g raves]^ that is, as they hasten to respond
to the caller who calls them to the place o f standing on the Day o f
Resurrection.

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«]that will be a gathering that is easy for Us)* that is, it is easy for
Allah, with no toil or effort.
^ We know best what they say)* to you o f offensive talk that grieves
you.
As We know best (about how m uch trouble they cause), you know
how m uch We care for you and the extent to w hich We have m ade
things easy for you and supported you against your enemies. So let
your heart be filled with jo y and reassurance, and know that We are
m ore m erciful and kinder to you than your own self.
Therefore there is nothing left for you to do but to await the promise
o f Allah and follow the exam ple o f the M essengers o f strong will.
^and you are not sent to com pel them to believe)* that is, you do
not have pow er over them ; rather:
^ . .. You are but a w am er, and for every people there is a guide.)* (ar-
Ra'd 13: 7)
Hence Allah says: ^B ut adm onish with the Q u r’an those who fear
M y w arning^. A dm onishing m eans to rem ind o f som ething that is
already instilled in people’s m inds and sound nature o f loving good,
giving it precedence and doing it, and o f hating evil and avoiding
it. T hose w ho benefit from the adm onition are those who fear the
w arning o f Allah.
As for those w ho do not fear the w arning and do not believe in it,
the benefit o f the adm onition in his case is the establishing o f proof
against him (and leaving him with no excuse), lest he say:
«j...N o b earer o f glad tidings and no w am er ever cam e to us...)*
(al-Ma'idah 5: 19)

T h is is the end o f the com m entary on Soorat Qaf.


A ll praise and thanks are for A llah, and m ay the b lessin gs and
peace o f A llah be upon Prophet M uhammad ( ^ g ) . his fam ily, and
his C om panions abundantly until the D ay o f Judgem ent.

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51.

Soorat adh-Dhariyat
(M akki)

In the name o f Allah,


the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful

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51:1. By the winds that scatter [the dust ],41


51:2. and by the winds that carry the heavily-laden clouds,
51:3. and by the stars that move gently,
51:4. and by the angels who distribute [blessings] by Allah’s command,
51:5. verily that which you are promised is true,
51:6. and verily judgem ent will surely come to pass.

This is an oath from A llah, W ho speaks the truth, sw earing by


these m ighty creations which He has m ade to be o f great benefit and

41 That is, before the initiation o f clou d form ation; clou d s are form ed by
condensation o f water vapour in the air, w hich is attracted to condensation
nuclei such as dust particles.

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o f service to people, to confirm that His prom ise is true and that the
Day o f Judgement, which is the day o f requital and reckoning o f deeds,
w ill inevitably com e to pass and no one can w ard it off.
As the truthful Alm ighty has spoken o f it, sworn an oath to confirm
it and established p ro o f and evidence for it, why do the disbelievers
disbelieve in it and turn aw ay from striving for it?
W hat is m eant by the winds that scatter is w inds that scatter the
dust when they blow gently, and w hen they blow strongly and cause
disturbance.
<[and by the w inds that carry the heavily-laden clouds)? that is,
clouds that carry a great deal o f w ater by m eans o f which Allah brings
benefits to the land and the people.
^and by the stars that m ove gently)? that is, the stars that move
easily, with w hich the heavens are adorned, and people navigate by
m eans o f them in darkness on land and sea, and m ay benefit from
them by noticing signs from Allah in them.
^and by the angels who distribute [blessings] by A llah’s command)?
that is, the angels who distribute and control m atters by A llah’s leave.
Allah has appointed each o f them to control some m atter in this world
and the hereafter, and none o f them goes beyond the limits set for
him, or falls short.

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5 1 :7. B y the h ea v e n w ith its tracks,

5 1 :8. v erily y o u are c o n fu s e d in y o u r b e lie fs,


5 1:9. b ec a u se o f w h ic h th o se w h o are d iv erted [a w a y from the truth]
are d iverted .

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^B y the heaven with its tracks^ that is, the sky with tracks that
look like the ripples m ade on sand or w ater by the wind
^verily y o u ^ who reject M uham m ad ( $ ||)
^ a re confused in y o u r beliefs)* for som e o f you say th at he is a
m agician, som e say that he is a soothsayer, som e say that he is a
m adm an, and various other statem ents that are indicative o f their
confusion and doubt, and that w hat they follow is false.
([because o f which those who are diverted [away from the truth] are
diverted)* that is, they are diverted from faith and from the evidence
and p ro o f o f Allah that gives certainty.
The differences in their views indicate that they are flaw ed and
false; by the same token, the fact that the truth brought by M uhammad
( ^ ) is harm onious, in that som e parts o f it confirm others and there
are no differences or flaws in it, indicates that it is sound and that it
is from Allah.
^ I f it had been from anyone other than Allah, they w ould surely
have found therein m any contradictions.)* (an-Nisa’4: 82)

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51:10. May those who base their beliefs on conjecture be doomed,


51:11. those who are steeped in ignorance and are heedless.
51:12. They ask [mockingly]: When will the Day o f Judgement be?
51:13. It will be the day when they will be tormented with the fire.
51:14. [It will be said to them:] Taste your torment! This is what you
were seeking to hasten.

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^M ay those w ho base their beliefs on conjecture be doom ed^ that


is, may Allah destroy those who tell lies against Him, reject His signs
and resort to falsehood in their attem pts to refute truth, who say o f
Allah that w hich they do not know.
^those w ho are steeped in ignorance)? that is, they are im m ersed
in disbelief, ignorance and m isguidance, ^and are heedless^.
^T hey ask [m ockingly]^ that is, by way o f doubt and disbelief,
w hen they w ill be resurrected, thinking it unlikely. So do not ask
about their situation and their bad fate on <|the day w hen they will be
torm ented with the fire)? that is, they will be punished because o f what
they did o f evil, both hidden and v isible. And it will be said to them:
^Taste your torment!)? That is, the punishm ent and the fire that
are the consequences o f your disbelief.
*(This)? punishm ent to w hich you have ultim ately com e ^ is w hat
you were seeking to hasten)?. So now enjoy all kinds o f punishm ent,
vengeance, chains, fetters, wrath and doom.

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51:15. Verily the righteous will be amidst gardens and springs,


51:16. receiving what their Lord will bestow upon them, because before
that they had been doers o f good.
51:17. They used to sleep but little at night,
51:18. and before dawn, they would seek forgiveness,
51:19. and in their wealth, there was a due share for the beggar and the
deprived .42

42 The deprived is the needy person w ho refrains from asking others for help; =

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Here A llah says, m entioning the rew ard o f the righteous and the
deeds that brought them to that reward: ^Verily the righteous^ that
is, those who feared A llah and w ere very pious and obedient
^ w ill be am idst gardens)* co n tain in g all kinds o f trees and fruit
that have equivalents in this w orld, and those that have no earthly
equivalent, such as eyes have never seen the like thereof, ears have
never heard o f them , and they have never crossed people’s minds.
*fand springs)* that is, flow ing springs that irrigate the gardens and
from which people drink, m aking them flow as they please (76: 6).
^receiving w hat their Lord will bestow upon them)* - it m ay be
that w hat is m eant is that the Lord has given the people o f paradise
all that they w ished for, o f all kinds o f delights, w hich they receive
with contentm ent and w hich bring them jo y and delight, and they do
not ask for any alternative or seek any change. All o f them will have
attained bliss to such a degree that they will not ask for more.
O r it m ay be that this is a description o f the righteous in this world;
they accept w hat A llah gives o f com m ands and prohibitions. In other
words, they w elcom e them open-heartedly and subm it to w hat Allah
com m ands, com plying with it in the m ost perfect manner, and they
respond to His prohibitions by refraining for the sake o f Allah, in the
m ost perfect manner. For w hat A llah has given them o f com m ands
and prohibitions is the best gift, w hich deserves to be received with
gratitude and subm ission to Allah.
The form er m eaning is m ore appropriate to the context, because
the following verse gives a description o f them and their deeds in this
world, as Allah says: ^because before that)*, before they attained that
bliss, ^they had been doers o f good)*.
This includes their excellence in w orship o f the Lord, for they
worship Him as if they could see Him, and although they cannot see

= people are therefore unaware of his need, and as a result he is deprived


of charitable help.

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Him, He sees them; and it includes their kindness towards other people
by benefitting them in term s o f w ealth or know ledge, or using their
status to help them , or show ing sincerity tow ards them , or enjoining
what is right, or forbidding w hat is wrong, or other w ays o f showing
kindness and doing good.
T hat also includes speaking kindly and gently, and show ing
kindness to slaves and to anim als, w hether they are ow ned by people
or not.
One o f the best kinds o f doing good is w orshipping the C reator
by praying at night, w hich is indicative o f sincerity and o f harm ony
betw een what is in the heart and the words one utters. Hence Allah
says: sfThey^ nam ely the doers o f good ^used to sleep but little at
nightji that is, their sleep at night was little.
M ost o f the night was spent in devotion to their Lord, by praying,
reading Q u r’an, remembering Allah, calling upon Him and beseeching
Him.
^and before dawnj} that is, the tim e ju st before dawn
^they w ould seek forgiveness^ from Allah (is,).
So they w ould m ake their prayer last until the tim e ju st before
dawn, then at the end o f the night prayers, they w ould ask Allah (4s)
for forgiveness in the m anner o f a sinner seeking forgiveness for his
sin. Praying for forgiveness before dawn is an act that has a special
virtue and character that is not present at other tim es, as Allah (4s)
says, describing the people o f faith and obedience:
d . . .those who pray for forgiveness before dawn, jj (Al ‘Imran 3:17)
^and in their wealth, there was a due shared w hether obligatory
or recom m ended
«jfor the beggar and the deprived^ that is, for the needy who ask o f
people and those w ho do not ask.

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( r r - r • i o Lj IJJi

51:20. In the earth are signs for those whose faith is certain,
51:21. and also in your own selves. Will you not then see?
51:22. And in the heaven is your provision 43 and all that you are
promised.
51:23. By the Lord o f heaven and earth, this is certainly true, as true
as the fact o f your speaking.

Here Allah says, calling His slaves to think and reflect: ^In the
earth are signs for those w hose faith is certain}*. That includes the
earth itself, and all that is on it o f m ountains, seas, rivers, trees and
plants that direct the attention o f the one w ho reflects upon them
and ponders their significance to the greatness o f their Creator, the
vastness o f His power, the com prehensive nature o f His generosity
and how His know ledge encom passes all things, both visible and
invisible. Likew ise, in the individual him self there are lessons and
signs o f divine w isdom and m ercy w hich indicate that Allah alone
is the One, the Unique, the Eternal, and that no one creates but He.
^A nd in the heaven is your provision}* that is, the origin o f your
provision, in the form o f rain and w hatever decrees com e down from
heaven, provision both spiritual and worldly.
«fand all that you are promised}* o f requital in this w orld and the
hereafter; it com es down from Allah, like all other decrees.

43 All earthly provision stems from the rain, which comes from the heaven
or sky.

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H aving pointed out the signs in such a way that the sm art person
would pay heed, Allah (4s) now swears that His prom ise and requital
are true, and He likens that to the m ost obvious thing to us, which
is our speech. Hence Allah says: ^B y the Lord o f heaven and earth,
this is certainly true, as true as the fact o f your speaking}?. So ju st as
you do not doubt your speech, you should not doubt the resurrection
after death.

51:24. Has there come to you the story o f the honoured guests o f
Ibraheem?
51:25. When they came to him and said: Peace. He said: [And upon
you be] peace; you are strangers [to me].
51:26. Then he went quietly to his household, and brought a fatted calf.
51:27. He placed it before them and said: Will you not eat?
51:28. He conceived a fear o f them .44 They said: Fear not, and gave
him the glad tidings o f a son endowed with knowledge.
51:29. His wife cried out loud, struck her face and said: [How can that
be, when 1 am] a barren old woman?

44 When they refrained from eating, he grew suspicious of them, because


according to cultural norms, once a guest had eaten of the host’s food, he
could not harm him. When they did not eat, he feared that they intended
him harm.

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51:30. They said: Thus says your Lord. Verily He is Most Wise, All-
Knowing.

^H as there com e to you)? that is, has there not com e to you ^the
story o f the honoured guests o f Ibraheem?)? For it is a strange and
w ondrous story. They w ere angels w hom A llah sent to destroy the
people o f Loot, and He com m anded them to pass by Ibraheem , so
they came to him in the form o f (hum an) guests.
^fWhen they came to him and said: Peace. He said)? in response to
their greeting: ^[A nd upon you be] peace; you are strangers [to me])?
that is, you are people unknow n, and I w ant you to tell me w ho you
are. He did not know who they w ere until after that.
Hence he went quietly to his fam ily - in other words, he slipped
aw ay discreetly - to bring food for them.
^and brought a fatted calf. He placed it before them ^ that is, he
presented the food to them, «fand said: Will you not eat? He conceived
a fear o f them)? when he saw that their hands did not reach out for
the food.
^T hey said: Fear not)?, and they told him w hat they had com e for,
«fand gave him the glad tidings o f a son endow ed with knowledge)?
nam ely Is-haq ( ^ t ) .
W hen his wife heard the glad tidings, she «(cried out loud^ with joy
^struck her face)? - which is som ething that w om en do w hen they are
happy, and they say and do other things that are contrary to ordinary
behaviour.
«fand said: [How can that be, w hen I am] a barren old woman?)? That
is, how can I have a child, w hen I am an old w om an w ho is past
childbearing age and, moreover, I am barren and my w om b has never
been fit to bear a child, so there are two im pedim ents, each o f which
on its own is sufficient to prevent me having a child.
A third im pedim ent is m entioned in Soorat Hood, w here she said:

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.. .and this husband o f mine is an old m an? That w ould be a strange


thing indeed! (Hood 11: 72)
^T hey said: Thus says your L ord^ that is, it is A llah W ho has
decreed and ordained that, and there is nothing strange about the
m ight and pow er o f Allah (:fe).
^Verily He is M ost Wise, A ll-K now ing^ that is, He does w hat is
appropriate, and encompasses all things by His knowledge. So submit
to His decree and show gratitude to Him for His blessing.

51:31. Ibraheem said: Then what is your business, O messengers?


51:32. They said: We have been sent to a wicked people,
51:33. to unleash upon them [a shower of] stones o f clay,
51:34. specifically marked and kept with your Lord for the transgressors.
51:35. We brought forth the believers who were in [the city],
51:36. but We found in it only one household o f Muslims.
51:37. And We left it as a sign for those who fear the painful punishment.

^ Ib ra h e e m s a id ^ to them : $ T h en w hat is y o u r b u siness, O


m essengers?^ That is, w hat is your purpose and what do you want?
Because he felt that they w ere m essengers whom Allah had sent for
some im portant purpose.
^T hey said: We have been sent to a w icked people^ nam ely the
people o f Loot, who had done evil deeds, associated others with Allah,

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rejected their M essenger and com m itted sham eful deeds that w ere
utterly unprecedented.
^to unleash upon them [a show er of] stones o f clay, specifically
m arked and kept with your Lord for the transgressors)* that is, each
one is m arked for a specific person, because they had transgressed
and overstepped all bounds.
Ibraheem started to argue w ith them for the people o f Loot, in
the hope that Allah m ight w ard o ff the punishm ent from them. But
Allah said:
Ibraheem, cease your pleading, for verily the decree o f your Lord
has gone forth; verily there is coming to them a punishm ent that cannot
be averted.)* (Hood 11: 76)
*f\Ve brought forth the believers w ho w ere in [the city], but We
found in it only one household o f Muslims}* nam ely the household
o f Loot, apart from his wife, for she was one o f the doom ed.
^ And We left it as a sign for those who fear the painful punishment}*
so that they might leam a lesson from it and know that Allah is severe
in punishm ent, and that His M essengers are honest and trustworthy.

W h a t th is s to r y in c lu d e s o f w is d o m a n d r u lin g s
The w isdom and rulings seen in this story include the following:
• It is w ise that A llah tells His slaves the stories o f both good
and evil people, so that they m ay leam from their stories and
the fate o f each group.
• The virtue o f Ibraheem al-K haleel ($%&), because Allah begins
his story with that w hich sheds light on its im portance and how
He paid special attention to it.
• It is prescribed to be hospitable, for this is the way o f Ibraheem
al-K haleel ( ® t ) , w hich A llah enjoined this P rophet and his
Um m ah to follow. Allah m entions it here by way o f praising it.
• The guest is to be honoured in various ways, in w ord and deed,
because A llah describes the guests o f Ibraheem as honoured. In

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other words, Ibraheem honoured them , and A llah describes the


hospitality that he offered them in w ord and deed. They were
also honoured by A llah (4g).
• The house o f Ibraheem ( | | 0 was a place that was frequented
by passers-by and visitors, because they entered upon him
w ithout seeking perm ission; rather they follow ed the etiquette
o f initiating the greeting o f saldm, and Ibraheem responded with
a m ore com plete greeting, because his greeting (as indicated
by the A rabic wording) was indicative o f a wish that peace be
upon them all the time.
• It is prescribed to ask people w ho com e to you or with whom
contact takes place to introduce them selves, because there are
m any benefits in doing so.
• We see Ibraheem ’s politeness and gentleness in speech, as he
said: f(you are strangers [to m e]p (51: 25), rather than saying,
“ I do not know you” . The difference betw een the two phrases
is obvious.
• One should hasten to offer hospitality, because the best good
deed is that w hich is done w ithout delay. H ence Ibraheem
hastened to prepare a meal for his guests.
• If m eat that has already been prepared is offered to a guest,
this is not disrespectful in the slightest; rather it is an honour,
as Ibraheem (§150 did that, and A llah tells us that his guests
w ere honoured.
• A llah tells us o f w hat He blessed His close friend Ibraheem
with o f great generosity, as this food was ready to be served,
and his house was in a state o f constant readiness to w elcom e
guests, so he did not need to go and fetch food from the market
or from his neighbours and the like.
• Ibraheem was the one who served his guests, even though he
was the close friend o f the M ost Gracious. The m an o f dignity
and honour is the one who serves his guests.

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• He brought the food to them , to the place w here they w ere


sitting, and he did not put it som ew here else and tell them to
com e and have some food, because this is easier for them and
is better.
• O ne should speak gently and show politeness to o n e’s guest,
especially when offering him food. Ibraheem offered the food to
them and requested them to eat in a very gentle manner, saying:
^W ill you not eat?^ (51: 27). He did not say “You have to eat”
and other such phrases that are not the m ost preferable; rather
his approach was that o f requesting them to eat.
• The one who wants to follow his example should use nice words,
as appropriate to the situation, such as saying to his guests:
Will you not eat? Or: Please do us the honour o f eating with
us, and the like.
• If a person is afraid o f som eone for any reason, that person
should reassure him, and say things to put his m ind at rest and
calm him down, as the angels said to Ibraheem , w hen he was
afraid o f them: ^ F ear no t^ (51: 28) and they told him o f those
glad tidings after he had been afraid o f them.
• We see the great jo y o f Sarah, the wife o f Ibraheem, to the extent
that she struck her face and cried out loud, w hich was not usual
behaviour on her part.
• A llah honoured Ibraheem and his w ife Sarah w ith the glad
tidings o f a know ledgeable son.

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51:38. And [there is another sign in the story of] Moosa, when We sent
him to Pharaoh with compelling proofs.

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5 1:39. But he and his people turned away, and he said [of Moosa]: A
magician, or a madman.
51:40. So We seized him and his troops and flung them into the sea,
and he was to blame.

^ A n d [there is another sign in the story of] Moosa)* and w hat


A llah sent him w ith to P haraoh and his chiefs o f clear signs and
dazzling m iracles. This is another sign to those who fear the painful
punishm ent. W hen M oosa cam e with that com pelling proof, Pharaoh
and his people ^turned away)* that is, they turned away from the truth
and paid no attention to it, and they criticised it in the w orst manner,
saying o f M oosa that he was ^A m agician, or a madman)*. In other
words, they thought that M oosa was either a m agician, and what he
had brought was charlatanry that had nothing to do with the truth at
all, or he was a m adm an who was not to be blam ed for what he said
or did, because he was not sane.
However they - especially Pharaoh - knew that M oosa was telling
the truth, as A llah (-Js) says elsewhere:
^They rejected the signs, although in their hearts they were certain that
they were true, out o f wickedness and arrogance...)* (an-Naml 27:14)
M oosa said to Pharaoh:
^...You know full well that none but the Lord o f the heavens and the
earth has sent down these [signs] as clear evidence...)* (al-lsra l 7:102)
^So We seized him and his troops and flung them into the sea, and
he was to blame)*, for he was a sinner and transgressor who disobeyed
Allah, so A llah seized him with the vehem ent grip o f One W ho is
Alm ighty, O m nipotent.

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51:41. And [there is another sign in the story of] ‘Ad, when We sent
against them the [devastating] wind that was devoid o f all good ;45
51:42. It spared nothing it came upon, but it reduced it to ruin and
decay.

^A nd [there is another sign in the story of] ‘A d ^ that is, there was
another m ighty sign am ong ‘Ad, a w ell-know n tribe,
^fwhen We sent against them the [devastating] w ind that was devoid
o f all good^ that is, there was nothing good in it. That w as w hen they
rejected their Prophet Hood (S§5l).
«flt spared nothing it cam e upon, but it reduced it to ruin and
decay's. Allah destroyed them despite their strength and power, which
is indicative o f His perfect m ight and om nipotence, for nothing is
beyond Him, W ho w reaks vengeance on those w ho disobey Him.

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51:43. And [there is another sign in the story of] Thamood, when it
was said to them: Enjoy life for a little while.
51:44. But they insolently transgressed the command o f their Lord,
so the devastating punishment overtook them whilst they were
looking on.
51:45. They could not withstand [the punishment] and could not ward
it off.

45 There are usually som e ben efits in the w ind, such as pollination o f trees
or bringing rain, but this w ind brought no benefits at all; rather it brought
utter destruction.

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«fAnd [there is another sign in the story of] Thamood)? w hen Allah
sent Salih ( ^ ) to them , but they stubbornly rejected him. A llah sent
him the she-cam el as a visible sign, but that only increased them in
stubbornness and aversion.
So it w as said to them : ^E n jo y life for a little while. But they
insolently transgressed the com m and o f their Lord, so the devastating
punishm ent]? nam ely the destructive blast ^overtook them w hilst
they w ere looking on]?, and saw the punishm ent w ith their own eyes.
^T hey could not withstand]? that is, they could not be saved from
*([the punishm ent] and could not ward it off)? from them selves.

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51:46. And the people o f Nooh [were destroyed by a devastating
punishment] before them. They were indeed a rebellious and
wicked people.

T hat is, A llah did likew ise to the people o f N ooh w hen they
rejected Nooh ( ^ ) and rebelled against the com m and o f Allah.
A llah sent against them the heaven and the earth, pouring and
gushing forth with water, and He drowned them all, and did not leave
any o f the disbelievers alive. This is the way o f A llah in dealing with
those who disobey Him.

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51:47. We built the heaven with m ight and verily We are [still]
expanding it.
51:48. And We spread out the earth. How gracious is He Who smoothed
it out.
51:49. And o f all things We have created pairs, so that you may pay
heed.
51:50. So flee to Allah. Verily I am a clear wam er to you from Him.
51:51. Do not associate with Allah any other god. Verily I am a clear
wam er to you from Him.

Here Allah (4c) says, highlighting His great might: ^ We built the
heaven)* that is, We created it and built it well, and We m ade it a ro o f
for the earth and all that is on it.
^w ith might)* that is, with im m ense pow er and strength
^and verily We are [still] expanding it)* in all directions.
A nd We also bestow expensive and abundant provision upon O ur
slaves. Allah does not leave any creature in the midst o f the wilderness
or the depths o f the sea, or in the upper or lower realm s, but He causes
provision to reach it as it needs, and He sends it blessings to suffice it.
So G lory be to the O ne W ho bestow s His generosity upon all
creatures, and blessed be the One W hose m ercy encom passes all o f
creation.
f[And We spread out the earth)* that is, We have m ade it spread
out for people, so that they will be able to do w hatever they have to
in order to m eet their needs, such as building dw ellings, planting,
cultivating, tilling the soil, settling, and follow ing routes that lead to
their destinations.
Because the earth has been spread out, one m ay think that it m ay
be beneficial in all respects, or it m ay be beneficial in som e w ays
but not others. Therefore A llah (4c) tells us that He has sm oothed it
out in the best way, and He praises H im self for that, saying: ^H ow

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gracious is He W ho sm oothed it out)* for His slaves, as dictated by


His wisdom , m ercy and generosity.
^A nd o f all things We have created pairs)* that is, tw o genders,
m ale and female, o f all types o f anim als
«fso that you m ay pay heed)* to the blessings o f A llah that He has
bestow ed upon you, as He has decreed that on the basis o f wisdom ,
m aking the pairs (m ale and fem ale) the m eans o f the perpetuation o f
all types o f anim als, so that you will raise them , take care o f them
and look after them , and thus attain m any benefits.
H aving called people to look at His signs, which w ould lead them
to fear Him and turn to Him , A llah now enjoins that w hich is the
purpose o f all these things, w hich is to flee to Him. W hat is meant
is to flee from that which Allah hates, both outw ardly and inwardly,
to that w hich He loves, both outw ardly and inwardly, fleeing from
ignorance to knowledge, from disbelief to faith, from sin to obedience,
and from heedlessness to rem em brance o f Allah.
W hoever does all o f that has done all that religion requires o f him;
he will be spared all that he fears and he will attain all that he seeks.
A llah describes turning to Him as fleeing, because turning to
anyone other than Him will result in all kinds o f fearful outcom es and
troubles, w hereas turning to Him leads to all that one loves, security,
joy, happiness and triumph.
You w ould flee from everyone you fear, except A llah (4s); the
m ore you fear Him, the m ore you flee to Him.
^V erily 1 am a clear w am er to you from Him)* that is, I am a
w am er to you o f the punishm ent o f Allah, bringing a clear m essage
o f warning.
^D o not associate with Allah any other god)*. This is part o f fleeing
to Allah; rather this is the basis o f ileeing to Him, for a person to flee
from taking any other god am ong the idols, rivals, graves and so on,
things that are w orshipped besides Allah, and devoting his worship,
fear, hope, supplication and repentance to his Lord alone.

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51:52. Likewise, no M essenger came to those before them, but they


said: [He is] a magician, or a madman.
51:53. Have they [the earlier and later generations] com e to an
agreement concerning this accusation? Rather they are a people
transgressing beyond bounds .46

H ere A llah consoles His M essen ger ( j | | ) for the rejection o f


the polytheists w ho disbelieved in him and said ab h orrent things
concerning him that w ere blatantly untrue. Such view s reflect the
constant attitude o f the evildoers w ho disbelieved in the M essengers.
A llah n ever sent any M essenger but his people accused him o f
w itchcraft or insanity.
A llah (^g) says: A re these view s w hich w ere ex p ressed by
the disbelievers - both earlier and later generatio n s - som ething
concerning w hich they have com e to an agreem ent and instructed one
another to say, and therefore there is nothing strange in the fact that
they agree on this? ^R ather they are a people transgressing beyond
bounds^ for their m indset and actions were similar, based on disbelief
and overstepping the bounds, therefore the views that stem m ed from
their transgression were similar.
This is the reality concerning them , as A llah (4g) says elsew here:

46 T h is refers to the accusation that the d isb eliev ers m ade again st every
M essen ger throughout the a g es, lab ellin g him a m agician or madm an.
But it is not p ossib le for them to have m ade such an agreem ent, because
they never met. Rather w hat they have in com m on is a m indset based on
transgression, w hich prom pted them to say the sam e thing w h en ever a
M essen ger cam e to them .

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^T hose who have no know ledge say: If only Allah w ould speak to
us or som e sign w ould com e to us. The people w ho cam e before
them said som ething sim ilar; their hearts are all m uch the s a m e ...|j
(al-Baqarah 2: 118)
By the sam e token, the m indset o f the believers is similar, because
they have subm itted to the truth, and they seek it and strive for it;
they hasten to believe in, venerate and respect their M essengers, and
they address them in an appropriate manner.

O O

51:54. So turn away from them; you are not to blame.


51:55. But continue to exhort them, for exhortation benefits the
believers.

Here Allah (-fe) enjoins His M essenger («|§) to turn aw ay from


those who reject his m essage and disbelieve:
^S o turn aw ay from them)? that is, do not pay any attention to them
and do not rebuke them ; rather focus on your own affairs, for you
are not to blam e for their sin. All you are required to do is convey the
m essage, and you have discharged your responsibility and conveyed
the m essage with which you were sent.
^ B u t co n tin u e to ex h o rt them , for e x h o rta tio n b en efits the
believers!*. Exhortation is o f two types, the first o f w hich is telling
that o f w hich the details are not know n, although it is know n in
general term s through com m on sense and reasoning. A llah has
caused everyone, on the basis o f com m on sense, to love good and
give precedence to it, and to hate evil and keep aw ay from it, and

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His laws are in accordance w ith that. T herefore all that He enjoins or
forbids com es under the heading o f exhortation. Proper exhortation
is to m ention the goodness and benefits in w hat is enjoined, and the
harm in what is prohibited.
The second type o f exhortation is to rem ind the believers to do
w hat is known to them , but they have grow n careless and heedless
about it. For that reason they should be rem inded repeatedly, so that
the exhortation will take root in their minds and they will begin to pay
attention to what they are rem inded of. Thus their energy, m otivation
and resolve will be renewed, which will make them try to benefit from
the exhortation and achieve progress.
Allah tells us that exhortation benefits the believers, because what
they have o f faith and fear o f Allah, and their constant turning to Him
and seeking His pleasure, allows them to benefit from the rem inder
and m akes the exhortation m ore effective in this case. This is like the
verses in which Allah (4s) says:
^S o rem ind people, if the rem inder will be o f benefit. The one who
fears Allah will pay heed w hile the w retched one will avoid it. P (al-
A ‘la 87: 9-11)

As for those who do not have faith and are not prepared to pay
heed to the exhortation, they will not benefit from it. This is like the
salty ground that does not benefit at all from the rain; even if every
sign w ere to com e to this type o f people, they w ould not believe until
they see the painful punishm ent w ith their own eyes.

51:56. 1 have not created the jinn and humans except to worship Me.

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51:57. I seek no provision from them, nor do I want them to feed Me.
51:58. Indeed, it is Allah Who is the Provider, Lord o f M ight, the
Powerful.

This is the purpose for which Allah created the jinn and humankind,
and sent all the M essengers to call to it, nam ely to worship Him alone,
which im plies knowing Him, loving Him, turning to Him and turning
aw ay from all others.
That im plies know ing Him, for w orshipping properly depends on
know ing Allah; in fact the m ore a person knows his Lord, the m ore
perfect his worship will be. This is the purpose for which Allah created
those who are accountable; He did not create them out o f any need
for them on His part.
A llah does not w ant any provision from them and He does not
want them to feed Him; exalted be Allah, the Self-Sufficient, W ho
has no need o f anyone in any way. R ather all creatures are in need
o f Him for all their needs and essential necessities. Hence He says:
^Indeed, it is A llah W ho is the Provider^ that is, He gives abundant
provision, and there is no creature that lives on the earth but its
sustenance is guaranteed by Allah. He knows its dw elling place and
its resting place (cf. 11: 6).
^L ord o f M ight, the P ow erful^ that is, the One W ho possesses all
strength and m ight, W ho brought all great entities, in the upper and
low er realm , into being. By that pow er all affairs, both apparent and
hidden, are controlled and His will is done in all realm s. W hatever
Allah w ills happens, and w hatever He does not will does not happen.
No one can flee from Him or escape His authority. By His m ight He
causes His provision to reach all the worlds. By His might and strength,
He will resurrect the dead after their bodies have disintegrated and
their dust has been scattered by the winds, or they have been devoured
by birds and w ild anim als and scattered in the far reaches o f the
w ilderness and in the depths o f the sea. N o one can escape Him ;

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He knows w hat the earth consum es o f them . G lory be to the M ost


Strong, the Powerful.

(*i»—o ^ : o l ]tjjl £)yd) e£311 C)*

51:59. Verily those who do wrong will have a share [of punishment]
like that o f their counterparts [among the earlier nations], so let
them not ask Me to hasten it.
51:60. So woe to the disbelievers from that day o f theirs which they
are promised.

That is, those who do w rong and reject M uham m ad ( ^ ) will have
a share o f punishm ent like that which was sent upon their counterparts
am ong earlier w rongdoers and disbelievers.
^so let them not ask M e to hasten it)* nam ely the punishm ent. For the
way o f Allah in dealing with the nations is always the same. Every
disbeliever who persists in his disbelief w ithout repenting and turning
back to Allah will inevitably be afflicted with the punishm ent, even
if it is delayed for a while. Hence Allah w arned them o f the Day o f
R esurrection, saying:
^S o woe to the disbelievers from that day o f theirs w hich they are
promised)* for that is the Day o f Resurrection, on w hich all kinds o f
punishm ent, vengeance, chains and fetters are prom ised. Then they
will have no helper and no one to save them from the punishm ent o f
A llah (3c). We seek refuge with Allah from it.

This is the end of the commentary on Soorat adh-Dhariyat.


All praise and thanks are for Allah, and may the blessings and
peace of Allah be upon Prophet Muhammad (5sif), his family, and
his Companions abundantly until the Day of Judgement.

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Soorat at-Toor
(M akki)

In the name o f Allah,


the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful

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52:1. By Mount Sinai,


52:2. and by a Book inscribed
52:3. on an unfurled parchment,
52:4. and by the much-frequented House,
52:5. and by the canopy [of heaven] raised high,
52:6. and by the sea kept filled,

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52:7. verily the punishment o f your Lord will surely come to pass;
52:8. there is none who can avert it.
52:9. On the day when the heaven will convulse in a great convulsion,
52:10. and the mountains move and pass away,
52:11. then woe that day to the deniers,
52:12. those who amuse themselves with vain discourse.
52:13. On the day when they are shoved forcibly towards the fire of
hell,
52:14. [It will be said to them:] This is the fire which you used to deny.
52:15. So is this magic? Or can you not see?
52:16. Bum therein, and whether you bear it patiently or not, it will
make no difference to you; you will be requited only for what
you used to do.

Here Allah swears by these great things, that are based on immense
wisdom , to the truth o f the resurrection and the requital o f the pious
and the disbelievers. He swears by M ount Sinai, which is the mountain
on w hich A llah spoke to His Prophet M oosa ibn ‘Im ran ( ^ ) and
revealed w hat He revealed to him o f rulings.
This is pointing out the great blessings that A llah bestow ed upon
him and his nation, as the blessings o f A llah cannot be appreciated
fully or evaluated properly, for they are beyond m easure.
«fand by a Book inscribed^. It m ay be that w hat is m eant is al-
Law h al-M ahfoodh. in w hich A llah has w ritten all things, or it may
be that w hat is m eant is the Holy Q u r’an, w hich is the best Book that
A llah sent down, containing stories and know ledge o f the earlier and
later generations.
*fon an unfurled p arch m en t^ that is, open, unconcealed pages,
the nature o f which is not hidden from anyone w ho is rational and
has insight.

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^and by the m uch-frequented Housejk This refers to the House


that is above the seventh heaven, that is frequented at all times by the
noble angels. Every day seventy thousand angels enter it, worshipping
their Lord therein, then they will never return to it until the Day o f
Resurrection. And it was suggested that the m uch-frequented House
is the sacred H ouse o f A llah (the K aaba), w hich is frequented by
those w ho circum am bulate it, pray and rem em ber A llah at all times,
and by the delegations who com e to it for Hajj and ‘um rah, as Allah
swore by it elsewhere:
f(And by this secure city [M akkah].^ (at-Teen 95: 3)
Such a House - that is the best house on earth, that is the destination
for anyone w ho goes for ‘umrah or Hajj, which is one o f the pillars o f
Islam, w ithout w hich Islam cannot be com plete, and that was built by
Ibraheem and Ism a‘eel, and Allah m ade it a focal point for the people,
and a sanctuary (cf. 2: 125) - deserves that Allah should sw ear by it
and highlight o f its greatness and sanctity w hat is appropriate to it.
«fand by the canopy [of heaven] raised high)? that is, the sky which
Allah has m ade a canopy for all creatures and the ro o f for the earth,
from w hich light is received, by the m arkers and lights o f w hich
people navigate, and from which Allah sends dow n rain, m ercy and
all kinds o f provision.
^and by the sea kept filled^ that is, filled with w ater w hich Allah
has contained and prevented from overflow ing and sw am ping the
land, even though by nature it should cover the entire face o f the
earth. But His w isdom dictated that He should prevent it from flowing
freely and flooding the land, so that all kinds o f creatures can live on
the face o f the earth.
It was also suggested that what is m eant by m asjoor (translated
here as «fkept filled^) is set on fire, w hich will happen on the Day o f
Resurrection, so it will becom e a raging fire that is filled - in all its
greatness and vastness - with all kinds o f torm ent.

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The fact that A llah swears by these things indicates that they are
among the signs o f Allah and offer evidence and p ro o f o f His oneness
and m ight, and that He will resurrect the dead. Hence He says:
^verily the punishm ent o f your Lord will surely com e to pass)*
that is, it will inevitably happen, for Allah does not break His prom ise
or His word.
^th ere is none w ho can avert it^ or w ard it off, and there is no
im pedim ent that can prevent it, because no one can resist or escape
the m ight o f Allah O s).
Then A llah describes that day on w hich the punishm ent will
com e to pass: «[On the day when the heaven will convulse in a great
convulsion^ that is, the heavens will rotate in turm oil, continuously
m oving in a chaotic fashion and not rem aining still.
^and the m ountains m ove and pass aw ay ^ that is, they w ill shift
from their places and m ove like clouds, changing colour, then they
will crum ble and becom e like scattered dust. All o f that will be due
to the im m ense fear and terrible events o f the Day o f R esurrection,
and the turm oil and upheaval that will cause this disturbance to these
great entities. So how about feeble hum an beings?
([then woe that day to the deniersp - the word translated here as
^ w o e ^ is a word that encom passes all punishm ent, grief, torm ent
and fear.
Then Allah describes the deniers who are deserving o f woe: ^those
who am use them selves with vain discourse^ that is, discourse about
falsehood with which they am use them selves. Their know ledge and
learning is aim ed at the pursuit o f harmful types o f knowledge, for the
purpose o f rejecting the truth and confirm ing falsehood. Their deeds
are the deeds o f people o f ignorance, foolishness and idle pursuits,
in contrast to the way o f the people o f faith who pursue beneficial
know ledge and righteous deeds.

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*(0 n the day w hen they are shoved forcibly tow ards the fire o f
hell)* that is, on the day w hen they are pushed harshly and driven
violently tow ards it, dragged on their faces, it w ill be said to them
by way o f rebuke and blame:
^This is the fire which you used to deny)? so today taste the eternal
punishm ent, which no one could estim ate or describe.
^S o is this m agic? Or can you not see?)* - It may be that this refers
to the fire and the punishm ent, as indicated by the context. In other
words: when they see the fire and the punishm ent, it will be said to
them , by w ay o f rebuke: Is this m agic that has no reality? For you
can see it, or did you not see w hen you w ere in the w orld? In other
words: Did you have no insight or knowledge, and w ere you ignorant
o f this m atter for w hich no p roof was established for you?
The response in both cases is in the negative.
As for the idea o f it being magic, it will becom e clear to them that
it is the truest o f truths, w hich is contrary to m agic in all respects.
As for the idea o f them not seeing, that is not the case. R ather
the p ro o f o f A llah was established against them , and the M essengers
called them to believe in that, establishing evidence and p ro o f to
that effect, that m ade it (the hereafter and the punishm ent) one o f the
issues that had the m ost p ro o f and clearest evidence.
O r it m ay be that the question ^S o is this m agic? O r can you not
see?)? refers to what the M essenger ( ^ ) brought o f clear truth and the
straight path. In other words: Was the message brought by Muhammad
(«|§) magic or is it that you could not see, to the extent that you were
confused? In fact his m essage is the clearest and truest o f all things,
and the p ro o f o f Allah has been established against them.
([Bum therein)? that is, enter the fire so that it m ay envelop you
and contain your physical being from all directions.
^and whether you bear it patiently or not, it will make no difference
to you)? that is, patience w ill not benefit you in the fire, and you

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will not be able to console one another; the punishm ent will not be
alleviated for you, for it is not one o f the things o f w hich the intensity
will dim inish if it is bom e w ith patience.
That will happen to them because o f their evil deeds. Hence Allah
says: ^you will be requited only for w hat you used to do^.

( Y• —W :jj]a}\ ijy*) ^ J

52:17. Verily the righteous will be amidst gardens and bliss,


52:18. enjoying what their Lord has bestowed upon them, and their
Lord will have saved them from the punishment o f the blazing
fire.
52:19. [It will be said to them:] Eat and drink with enjoyment, as a
reward for your deeds.
52:20. They will be reclining on couches arranged in rows, and We
will marry them to fair companions with big beautiful eyes.

H aving m entioned the pu n ish m en t o f the deniers, A llah now


mentions the bliss o f the righteous, in order to combine encouragement
and w arning, and so that p eo p le’s hearts m ay be in a state between
fear and hope. Therefore He says:
^V erily the righteous)* w ho feared their L ord and feared His
w rath and p u n ish m en t, by tak in g m easu res th at co u ld pro tect
them against it by com plying with the com m ands and heeding the
prohibitions
^w ill be am idst gard en s^ that are filled with long-branched trees,
flowing rivers, lofty palaces and adorned dwellings

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*fand bliss)? w hich includes all psychological, spiritual and physical


delights.
^ en jo y in g w hat their L ord has bestow ed upon them)? that is,
am azed by it, enjoying with delight and happiness w hat their Lord
has granted them o f indescribable blessings, for no soul know s what
has been kept hidden for them o f delight.
A llah protected them from the punishm ent o f hell, granted them
w hat they love and saved them from what they fear, because they did
that w hich A llah loves and they avoided that w hich incurs His wrath.
^ [It will be said to them:] Eat and drink)? that is, w hatever you
desire o f all types o f delicious food and drink
^ w ith enjoym ent)? that is, enjoying that food and drink w ith joy,
happiness and pleasure,
^as a rew ard for your deeds)? that is, you have attained this because
o f your good deeds and good words.
^ T h e y w ill be reclining on couches arranged in rows)? w hat
is m eant by the w ord translated here as ^reclining)? is sitting and
firm ly resting in a relaxed and settled manner. The word translated
as ^couches)? refers to couches that are adorned w ith all kinds o f
adornm ent, such as fine cloth and beautiful upholstery.
A llah describes the couches as being arranged in row s so as to
indicate that they are num erous and well organised, and the people
sitting on them are together and happy, treating one another kindly
and speaking gentle w ords to one another. W hen they have all that
m ay delight them , heart and soul, along w ith all kinds o f physical
delights such as have never crossed people’s m inds and cannot be
described, o f delicious food and drink and pleasant gatherings in a
beautiful place, there is nothing left except to enjoy physical pleasures
with women, w ithout whom happiness cannot be complete. Therefore
Allah tells us that they will have wives who are the m ost perfect o f
wom en, both physically and in attitude. Hence He says: ^and We will

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m arry them to fair com panions with big beautiful eyes)*. These are
wom en who com bine beauty and glam our o f outw ard form with the
best attitude and character; their beauty w ould dazzle the onlookers
and astound people, and they w ould be im patient to m eet them and
long to talk to them. The w ord translated here as referring to them
having big beautiful eyes refers to the beauty o f eyes o f which the
white and black parts are very clear and pure.

52:21. For those who believe and whose offspring follow them in faith,
We will cause their offspring to join them, and We will not
detract anything from the reward o f their good deeds. Every
person is held in pledge for what he earns.
52:22. And We will provide them with fruit and meat, such as they
desire.
52:23. There they will pass around a cup [of wine] which will not lead
to any idle talk or sin.
52:24. There will circulate among them [servant] boys o f theirs, as if
they are pearls carefully guarded.
52:25. They will turn to one another with questions.
52:26. They will say: When we were living before among our kinsfolk
we were afraid [of Allah’s punishment].

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52:27. Therefore Allah was gracious to us and protected us from the


punishment o f the scorching fire.
52:28. Verily we used to call upon Him before. Verily He is the
Beneficent, the Most Merciful.

This is part o f the perfect bliss o f the people o f paradise: Allah will
cause to jo in them their offspring who follow ed them in faith. Allah
will cause these offspring to reach their parents’ level in paradise, even
though their deeds w ere not sufficient to reach their parents’ level, as
an increased rew ard for their parents. M oreover, that will not detract
from the good deeds o f the parents in the slightest.
B ecause som e m ay im agine that the sam e is applicable to the
people o f hell, and that Allah will cause their offspring or parents to
join them , Allah tells us that the rulings governing the two realm s are
not the same. Hell is the realm o f justice, and part o f A llah’s justice
is that He does not punish anyone except for his own sin. Hence He
says: ^E very person is held in pledge for what he earns)?. So no soul
will bear the burden o f another and the sins o f one person will not
be borne by another. This is adding a further com m ent in order to
rem ove any m isunderstanding.
And We will provide them)? that is, we will provide to the people
o f paradise, from O ur abundant bounty and provision
4(fruit)? such as grapes, pom egranates, apples and m ore types o f
delicious fruits than are essential for nourishm ent
?fand meat, such as they desire^ o f all that they may request and want,
such as the flesh o f fowls and other kinds o f meat.
^T here they will pass around a cup)? that is, cups o f nectar and
w ine w ill circulate am ong them , and they w ill pass them to one
another, and im m ortal (servant) boys will circulate am ong them with
cups and ju gs (cf 56: 17-18).
«jwhich will not lead to any idle talk or sin)? that is, there is no idle
talk in paradise, w hich is talk in w hich there is no benefit; and there

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will be no sin, w hich is that in w hich there is disobedience to Allah.


As these two things are ruled out, a third m atter is proven, which is
that their talk in paradise will all be good and pure, bringing jo y and
happiness to hearts and souls. They will treat one another in the best
manner, exchanging the best conversation, and they will not hear from
their Lord anything but that which will bring them delight and will
indicate that He is pleased with them and loves them.
^T here will circulate am ong them [servant] boys o f theirs, as if
they are pearls carefully guarded)? because o f their beauty. They will
go around to serve them and m eet all their needs. This is indicative
o f m any abundant blessings and perfect comfort.
^T hey will turn to one another with questions)? about the affairs
o f the previous world and what happened.
^T hey will say^, describing w hat brought them to this place o f
jo y and happiness in which they find them selves:
^W hen we w ere living before^ in the previous w orld ^am ong our
kinsfolk we w ere afraid [o f A llah ’s punishm ent]^ that is, w e were
afraid and apprehensive, so we refrained from sin out o f fear o f Him,
and we corrected our faults.
^T herefore A llah was gracious to u s^ and He guided us
^and protected us from the punishm ent o f the scorching fire)? that is,
the punishm ent o f severe heat.
^Verily we used to call upon Him before)? asking Him to protect
us from the punishm ent o f the scorching fire and cause us to attain
bliss. This includes the supplication o f w orship and the supplication
o f asking. In other w ords, we kept trying to draw close to Him by
doing all kinds o f acts o f w orship and calling upon Him at all times.
^V erily He is the B eneficent, the M ost M erciful)? and part o f His
beneficence and m ercy tow ards us is that He caused us to attain His
pleasure and reach paradise, and He protected us from His w rath and
the fire o f hell.

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(tr-YS :j j U \

52:29. So keep reminding [them, O Muhammad], for by the grace o f


your Lord you are neither a soothsayer nor a madman.
52:30. Or do they say: [He is] a poet; we are waiting for some misfortune
to befall him?
52:31. Say: Wait then! 1 am waiting with you.
52:32. Is it their reasoning that prompts them to say this, or are they a
people transgressing beyond bounds?
52:33. Or do they say: He has made it [the Q ur’an] up himself? Rather
they are not willing to believe.
52:34. Then let them produce a discourse like it, if they are telling the
truth.
52:35. Were they created by nothing, or were they them selves the
creators?
52:36. Or did they create the heavens and the earth? Rather they lack
certainty o f faith.
52:37. Or do they possess the treasuries o f your Lord? Or do they rule
supreme?

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52:38. Do they have a means o f ascending [to heaven] in order to listen


[to those on high ]?47 Then let their listener produce clear proof.
52:39. Does He have daughters while you have sons ?48
52:40. Or is it that you are asking them for recompense which they
find too burdensome?
52:41. Or do they have knowledge o f the unseen, which they are writing
down?
52:42. Or do they intend a plot [against you, O Muhammad]? But it is
those who disbelieve who will be outwitted.
52:43. Or do they have a god other than Allah? Glory be to Allah, [far
exalted is He] above having the partners they ascribe to Him.

Here Allah (te ) instructs His M essenger ( ^ ) to remind the people,


both M uslim s and disbelievers, so as to establish the p ro o f o f Allah
against the w rongdoers and so that the fortunate will be guided by
this rem inder; and He tells him that he should not pay any attention
to the words and annoyance o f the disbelieving polytheists and w hat
they say to bar people from follow ing him , even though they know
that he is the furthest rem oved o f all people from what they accuse
him of. H ence Allah declared him to be above any o f the accusations
that they m ade against him, as He said:
^ fo r by the grace o f your Lord)? that is, by His kindness and favour
^ y o u are n eith er a so o th say er^ w ho has a jin n i w ith w hom he
com m unicates and w ho brings him som e news o f the unseen, adding
to it a hundred lies
^ n o r a m ad m an ^ w ho has lost his m ind. R ather you are the m ost
rational o f people and the m ost m ature in thinking, and the furthest

47 That is, to listen to the an g els and thus know that w hat they are fo llo w in g
is the truth.
48 T he pagans o f Quraysh regarded the an g els as daughters o f A llah and
w orshipped them . (at-Tabari)

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rem oved from the devils; you are the m ost truthful o f people and the
m ost perfect in dignity.
A nd so m etim es (they say) o f him that ^ [H e is] a poet)? w ho
com poses poetry, and what he has brought is poetry. But Allah says:
«f'We have not taught him [the Prophet] poetry, nor could he ever have
been a poet...)? (Yd Seen 36: 69)
^w e are w aiting for som e m isfortune to befall him)? that is, we
are waiting for him to die, for then his call will com e to an end and
we will be rid o f him.
^Say)? to them , in response to these foolish words: ^W ait then!)?
that is, w ait for me to die,
am w aitin g w ith you)?, w aitin g for A llah to afflict you w ith
punishm ent, either directly from Him or at our hands.
^Is it their reasoning that prom pts them to say this, or are they
a people transgressing beyond bounds?)? That is, does this rejection
o f you, and w hat they say, stem from their reasoning and rational
thinking? W hat bad reasoning it is that led to such a conclusion and
outcome!
For no doubt reasoning that concluded that the m ost perfect o f
people in reason was insane, and deem ed the m ost truthful o f truth
as a lie and falsehood, is indeed reasoning o f a level to which even
the insane w ould not sink.
O r is it that w hat m ade them reach this conclusion w as their
w ro n g d o in g and tran sg ressio n ? T his is in fact w h at it is, for
tran sg ression know s no lim it. So such w ords and deeds are not
surprising on the part o f the transgressor who goes beyond all bounds.
^ O r do they say: He has m ade it [the Q u r’an] up him self?^ that
is, do they say that M uham m ad ( # | ) has m ade up the Q u r’an o f his
own accord?
f[Rather they are not w illing to believe)? for if they believed, they
would not say such things.

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^T hen let them produce a discourse like it, if they are telling the
truthp when they say that he made it up, for you are eloquent and well-
spoken Arabs, and you have been challenged to produce som ething
like it. Thus you will either prove your point or (if you fail) you will
confirm that it is the truth and that, even if you all cam e together,
hum ans and jin n, you w ould not be able to produce the like o f it.
Therefore, you are left with tw o choices:
Either you m ay believe in it and follow its guidance, or you can
stubbornly persist in follow ing w hat you know o f falsehood.
^W ere they created by n othing, or w ere they them selves the
creators?)* T his is an arg u m ent again st them , by p re sen tin g an
argum ent that leaves them with no choice but to subm it to it, or to
go beyond the fram ew ork o f reason and religious teachings (and
thus dem onstrate how lost they are). To explain further: they deny
the oneness o f Allah and reject His M essenger (3§|), w hich leads to
denying that A llah created them.
But it is well established on the basis o f reason, as well as religious
teaching, with regard to the issue o f creation, that only one o f three
scenarios m ay apply:
Either they were created by nothing. In other words there is no creator
who created them; rather they cam e into existence w ithout anyone to
bring them into existence, w hich is im possible.
O r they created them selves, w hich is also im possible, because it
cannot be im agined that they brought them selves into existence.
H aving ruled out these tw o scenarios, as it is clear that they are
impossible, it becomes clear that the only answer is the third scenario,
w hich is that it is Allah W ho created them.
Once that is established, it is know n that A llah (M ) is the only One
W ho is deserving o f worship, the only one to W hom w orship should
be devoted, and it is not right or proper to worship any except Him.
^O r did they create the heavens and the earth? )* This is a question
which indicates that they did not do that. In other w ords, they did not

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create the heavens and the earth, because in that case they w ould be
partners with A llah. This is very clear.
But the disbelievers *jlack certainty o f faith)? that is, they do not have
proper knowledge or any certainty that would make them benefit from
the textual and rational evidence.
4(Or do they possess the treasuries o f your Lord? O r do they
rule supreme?)? That is, do these disbelievers possess the treasuries
o f your L o rd ’s mercy, so that they m ay give it to w hom ever they
w ish and w ithhold it from w hom ever they w ant, so that is why they
wanted to prevent Allah from bestow ing prophethood upon His slave
and M essenger M uham m ad (s|§ ), as if they w ere in charge o f the
treasuries o f A llah ’s mercy, when they are too insignificant for that,
for they have no pow er to benefit or harm them selves, or to cause
death, give life or resurrect?
^Is it they w ho distribute the blessings o f your Lord? It is We Who
distribute their livelihood am ong them in the life o f this w o rld ...)?
(az-Zukhruf43: 32)
«(Or do they rule supreme?)? T hat is, do they have authority over
the creation and dom inion o f Allah by m eans o f force and strength?
That is not so; rather they are helpless and weak.
c:Do they have a m eans o f ascending [to heaven] in order to listen [to
those on high])? that is, do they have the ability to find out about the
unseen and listen to those on high, so that they are told about m atters
that no one else knows?
cjThen let their listener^ who m akes that claim
^produce clear proof)? - but w here will he get that from?
Allah B s ) is the K now er o f the unseen and the seen, and He does
not allow anyone to learn about the unseen except the M essengers,
with w hom He is pleased, whom He tells w hatever He wills.
B ecause M uham m ad (5|§) is the best and m ost know ledgeable
o f the M essengers, and their leader, and is the one w ho conveyed

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w hatever he was told about the oneness o f A llah, His prom ise and
w arning, and o th er m atters o f truth, w h ereas the deniers are the
people o f ignorance, m isguidance, transgression and stubbornness,
then w hich o f the two parties is m ore deserving o f having their w ord
accepted?
E specially since the M essenger (»|§) has established p ro o f and
evidence for w hat he said, w hich m akes w hat he said som ething
very certain and m ost truthful, w hereas they have not established any
argum ent for their claim s, let alone clear proof.
^D oes He have daughters)?, as you claim, Awhile you have sons?)?
thus you com bine two m istakes, by ascribing offspring to Him and
choosing for Him the lesser o f the tw o categories. Is there any greater
disrespect towards the Lord o f the w orlds than this?
^ O r is it that you)? O M essenger ( j |§ ) «fare asking them for
recom pense)? for conveying the m essage, ^w h ich they find too
burdensome?)? That is not so; rather you are keen to teach them for
nothing in return, and in fact you are spending a great deal o f m oney
on them so that they m ay accept your m essage and respond to your
call, and you give to those w hose hearts are to be won over, so as to
establish know ledge and faith in their hearts.
«fOr do they have knowledge o f the unseen, which they are writing
down)?, so they w rite dow n w hat they know o f the unseen, and thus
gain inform ation and know ledge o f w hich the M essenger o f Allah
( # | ) is not aware, then they oppose him and stubbornly resist him
because o f know ledge o f the unseen that they have? But it is known
that they are an unlettered nation, ignorant and m isguided.
It is the M essenger o f Allah (*|§) who has m ore know ledge than
anyone else, for Allah has granted him know ledge o f the unseen that
He did not disclose to anyone else. All o f this proves to them by means
o f both rational and textual evidence that their view s are corrupt,
and proves, in the clearest and m ost eloquent m anner, to w hich no
objections can be raised, that w hat they say is false.

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«(0 r do they intend)* by criticising you and the m essage you have
brought «fa plot [against you, O M uham m ad])* to invalidate your
religion and cause you trouble?
«(But it is those w ho disbelieve who will be outwitted)* that is, their
plot will backfire and it is they w ho will be harm ed by it. And Allah
indeed brought that about - to Him be praise. The disbelievers did not
spare any effort in their plot, but Allah supported His Prophet ( ^ )
and His religion against them and caused them to fail and be defeated.
^O r do they have a god other than Allah?)* That is, do they have
a god that they call upon and hope will benefit them , and fear his
harm , other than Allah (4c)?
«]Glory be to A llah, [far exalted is He] above having the partners
they ascribe to Him)* for He has no partner in His dom inion, and no
partner in His oneness or worship.
That is the point o f the previous verses, nam ely to highlight the
falseness o f worshipping anything other than Allah, and to explain that
doing so is false and wrong, on the basis o f definitive evidence; that
what the polytheists follow is false; and that the only One Who should
be worshipped, prayed to, prostrated to and to W hom the supplication
o f worship and the supplication o f asking should be offered sincerely
is Allah, the only One W ho is deserving o f devotion and worship, Who
is perfect in His names and attributes, Who possesses many superlative
attributes and beautiful deeds, the Lord o f m ajesty and m unificence,
the A lm ighty W ho cannot be underm ined, the One, the Unique, the
Eternal, the M ost Great, the M ost Praiseworthy, the M ost Glorious.

O 0

(n-t t : j j U \

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52:44. If they were to see pieces o f the sky falling [on them], they
would say: [This is nothing but] a mass o f clouds.
52:45. So let them be until they encounter that day o f theirs on which
they will die,
52:46. the day when their plotting will avail them nothing, and they
will not be helped.

H ere A llah states that the polytheists w ho reject the clear truth
have turned aw ay from the truth and persisted in falsehood, and that
even if all proof and evidence was established to support the truth,
they w ould not follow it, and they w ould stubbornly oppose it and
go against it:
^ I f they were to see pieces o f the sky falling [on them ]^ that is,
if clear evidence w ere to fall upon them from the sky in pieces - in
other words, if large pieces o f punishm ent w ere to fall upon them -
^th ey w ould say: [This is nothing but] a m ass o f clouds)* that is,
this is ju st clouds piled up as usual. In other words, they do not pay
attention to what they see o f signs, and they do not learn anything from
them.
T here is no rem ed y for such p eople excep t p u n ish m en t and
ch a stisem e n t. H ence A llah says: 4(So let th em be u n til th ey
encounter that day o f theirs on w hich they w ill die)?, w hich is the
Day o f R esurrection, w hen they will be afflicted w ith inestim able
and indescribable punishm ent and chastisem ent.
?fthe day when their plotting will avail them nothing)?, sm all or
great, even though in this w orld they m ay be able to survive for a
short tim e by m eans o f their plots. But on the Day o f Resurrection,
their plots will com e to naught, their efforts will prove w orthless and
they will not be aided against the punishm ent o f Allah, as He says:
^and they will not be helped)*.

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52:47. Verily, for those who do wrong, there will be another punishment
before that day comes. But most o f them do not know.
52:48. Be patient with your Lord’s decree [O Muhammad], for verily
you are under Our watchful eyes. And glorify and praise your
Lord when you rise,
52:49. and glorify Him in the night and when the stars have set.

Having m entioned the punishm ent o f the w rongdoers on the Day


o f Resurrection, A llah now tells us that they will be punished before
that day; that includes punishm ent in this w orld by w ay o f killing,
capture, and expulsion from their hom eland, as well as punishm ent
in al-barzakh and in the grave.
«(But m ost o f them do not know]? that is, hence they persist in
doing that which will incur punishm ent and a severe penalty.
H aving highlighted the p ro o f and evidence for the falseness o f
what the disbelievers say, A llah then instructed His M essenger ( ^ )
not to pay attention to them at all, and to show patience in accepting
the universal and religious decrees o f his Lord, by turning to Him
and persisting in doing so. And Allah prom ised to suffice him, as He
said: ^ fo r verily you are under O ur watchful eyes)? that is, We are
w atching over you and taking care o f you.
Allah instructed him to seek help in being patient by remem bering
and w orshipping Him: ^A nd glorify and praise your Lord when you
rise)? that is, at night.

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This is a com m and to pray qiyam (voluntary night prayers) and the
five daily obligatory prayers, based on the fact that A llah then says:
dand glorify Him in the night and when the stars have set)* that is, at
the end o f the night; it also includes fa jr prayer. And Allah knows best.

T his is the end o f the com m entary on Soorat at-Toor.


A ll praise and thanks are for A llah, and m ay the b lessin g s and
peace o f A llah be upon Prophet M uham m ad ( ^ ) , his fam ily, and
his C om panions abundantly until the D ay o f Judgem ent.

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53.
Soorat an-Najm
(Ma kki)

--

In the name o f Allah,


the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful

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53:1. By the star when it sets,


53 :2 . your companion has neither strayed nor erred,
53 :3 . nor does he speak o f his own accord;
53:4. It is but divine inspiration .49
53:5. He was taught by one mighty in power,

49 This includes the Qur’an and everything that the Prophet ( j | | ) uttered
of religious teachings.

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53:6. endow ed w ith im m ense w isdom [nam ely Jibreel], who


manifested him self [in his true form]
53:7. when he was above the horizon.
53:8. Then he approached and came down,
53:9. until he was two bow-lengths away or even nearer.
53:10. Then he revealed to Allah’s slave what he had to reveal.
53:11. His heart did not deny what he saw.
53:12. How can you then dispute with him concerning what he saw?
53:13. Indeed he saw him a second time,
53:14. at the Lote-Tree o f the Utmost Boundary,
53:15. near which is the Garden o f Abode,
53:16. when there covered the Lote-Tree that which covered it.
53:17. His gaze did not wander or look beyond the limit.
53:18. Indeed he saw some o f the greatest signs o f his Lord.

H ere Allah (4?) swears by the stars w hen they set; that is, when
they disappear below the horizon at the end o f the night, when day
com es. T hat is because there are great signs o f A llah in that, that
m ake it appropriate to sw ear thereby. The correct view is that the
w ord translated here as “stars” includes all heavenly bodies. Allah
sw ears by the stars to the soundness o f w hat the M essenger ( ^ )
brought o f divine revelation, because there is som ething am azing in
com m on betw een the two. A llah has m ade the stars an adornm ent
for the heaven, and in like m anner He has m ade the revelation and
its effects an adornm ent for the earth. Were it not for the know ledge
inherited from the Prophets, the people w ould be in darkness greater
than that o f the darkest night.
The point made by this oath is to declare that the M essenger ( ^ ) is
far above being m isguided in his know ledge and aim s, w hich implies
that he is guided in his know ledge and that in guiding others he has
the best o f intentions and is utterly sincere tow ards the Um m ah. This

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is in contrast to the followers o f m isguidance, w hose know ledge is


corrupt and w hose aim s are corrupt.
^y o u r com panion^ he is described as their com panion in order to
alert them to w hat they already know o f his sincerity and guidance,
and the fact that his character is not hidden from them.
^n o r does he speak o f his own accord^ that is, w hat he says does
not stem from his own whim s and desires.
^ It is but divine inspiration^ that is, he is only follow ing w hat
A llah reveals to him o f guidance and righteousness; he is guided in
h im self and is guiding others.
This indicates that the Sunnah is also revelation from Allah to His
M essenger ( 3|§ ) , as He says:
^ ...F o r A llah has sent down to you the B ook and w isdom ...)^ (an-
Nisd’4: 113)
He is protected and infallible w ith regard to w hat he says about
Allah (t5g) and about religious rulings, because these w ords do not
stem from his own whim s and desires; rather they are based on divine
inspiration.
Then A llah m entions the teacher o f the M essenger (•>§§), nam ely
Jibreel ( ® 0 , the best, strongest and m ost perfect o f the angels: ^H e
was taught by one mighty in pow erp that is, the revelation was brought
dow n to the M essenger by Jibreel (®50.
^m ighty in pow er^ that is, mighty in power both visible and invisible;
he has the strength to carry out w hatever Allah com m ands him to, and
has the strength to convey the revelation to the M essenger (<!§), and
to protect it from the eavesdropping o f the devils or their attem pts to
insert into it that w hich is not part o f it.
This is part o f A llah’s guarding His revelation, that He sent it with
this powerful and trustw orthy messenger.
^endow ed w ith im m ense w isdom ^, power, good m anners, and
inner and outer beauty.

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(([namely Jibreel], w ho m anifested h im self [in his true form] when


he was above the horizon)* that is, the horizon o f the heaven, which
is higher than the earth, because he is one o f the beings o f the upper
realm , w hom the devils cannot reach.
^T hen he)* nam ely Jibreel ( # 0
(•(approached)) the Prophet ( i | | ) , to convey the revelation to him.
((and came down!) to him from the upper horizon, until he was as close
to him as ^tw o bow -lengths aw ay or even nearer)* that is, or he was
nearer than the distance o f two bow-lengths. This is indicative o f the
direct nature o f the com m unication o f the m essage to the M essenger
(SltX with no interm ediary betw een him and Jibreel ( i ^ ) .
((Then he revealed)* that is, Jibreel (M k) revealed, by A llah’s leave
((to A llah’s slave)* nam ely M uham m ad ( i|§ )
((what he had to reveal)* o f great religious rulings and the straight path.
((His heart did not deny w hat he saw)* that is, the heart o f the
M essenger ( ^ ) and his sight w ere in agreem ent concerning the
revelation that A llah revealed to him. His hearing, his heart and his
sight w ere all in harmony, w hich is indicative o f the perfect nature o f
the revelation that Allah sent to him , and that he received it in such a
m anner that there can be no doubt about it. So his heart did not deny
or doubt w hat his eyes saw.
It m ay be that w hat is referred to here is w hat the Prophet ( j|§ )
saw on the night w hen he was taken on the N ight Journey (al-Isra ’)
o f m ighty signs o f Allah, and that his certainty was based on what
he realised in his heart and w hat he saw. T his is the correct view
concerning the interpretation o f this verse.
It was also suggested that w hat is m eant is the M essenger ( ^ )
having seen his Lord and spoken with Him on the night o f the Isra’.
This is a view favoured by many o f the scholars (may Allah have mercy
on them), on the basis o f which they affirmed that the M essenger ( j|§ )
had seen his Lord w hilst he was in this world.

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H ow ever the correct view is the first view m entioned above,


w hich is that w hat is m eant is Jibreel ( i l k ) , as is indicated by the
context, and that M uham m ad ( i|§ ) saw Jibreel in his original,
true form twice: once on the upper horizon below the lowest heaven,
as m entioned above, and once above the seventh heaven on the night
when the M essenger o f Allah (*§§) was taken on the N ight Journey.
Hence Allah says:
^Indeed he saw him a second tim e^ that is, M uham m ad (J|§ ) saw
Jibreel a second tim e, com ing down to him.
(I at the Lote-Tree o f the U tm ost Boundary)?, w hich is a very large
tree above the seventh heaven. It is called the ^ L ote-T ree o f the
U tm ost Boundary)? (sidrat al-muntahai) because at it everything stops
(yantahi) that ascends from the earth, and to it descends everything
that com es down from A llah o f revelation and so on.
O r it is because the know ledge o f hum ankind ends there; in other
words, it is above the heavens and the earth, and it is the utm ost in
its height. O r it m ay be for som e other reason. A nd A llah knows best.
M uham m ad ( ^ ) saw Jibreel in that place w hich is the place o f
the m ost sublime, pure and beautiful souls, that cannot be approached
by any devil or any other evil soul.
Beside that tree there is ifthe Garden o f Abode)?, which is a garden
that contains all delights, a place that is the u ltim ate w ish o f all,
the goal for w hich all strive, on w hich all desires are focused. This
indicates that paradise is in the highest location, above the seventh
heaven.
$w hen there covered the Lote-Tree that w hich covered it)? that is,
in accordance with the divine decree, it was covered by som ething
very great, the description o f w hich no one know s but Allah B g).
^H is gaze did not w ander or look beyond the limit)? that is, his
gaze did not w ander right or left, aw ay from w hat he saw

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<$or look beyond the lim it^ that is, he did not look any further than he
was supposed to. This is perfect etiquette on the part o f the Prophet
( i l l ) , as he stood w here Allah w anted him to stand, and he did not
fall short or go beyond it or drift aw ay from it.
T his is the m ost perfect etiquette, in w hich the P rophet ( i|§ )
surpassed the first and the last. W hat is contrary to proper etiquette
is one o f the follow ing scenarios: eith er not carrying out w hat a
person is instructed to do, or carrying it out in a negligent manner,
or going to extrem es in carrying it out, or tw isting it or not doing
it exactly as told. N one o f these w as applicable in the case o f the
Prophet ( ^ ) .
^Indeed he saw some o f the greatest signs o f his L ord^ such as
paradise and hell, and other things that he saw on the night o f the
Isra’ (N ight Journey).

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53:19. Have you thought about al-Lat and al-‘Uzza,


53:20. and Manat, the third and last?
53:21. Do you choose males for yourselves and for Him females ?50
53:22. That is indeed an unfair division.
53:23. They are no more than names you have named, you and your
forefathers, for which Allah has not sent down any authority.

50 Al-Lat, al-‘Uzza and Manat were idols which the pagans of Quraysh
regarded as daughters of Allah. (at-Tabari)

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They follow nothing but conjecture and what their own selves
desire, although guidance has come to them from their Lord.
53:24. Is man to have everything he wishes for?51
53:25. Nay, to Allah belong the hereafter and the present.

H aving com m ended w hat M uham m ad ( i | | ) brought o f guidance,


true religion and the command to worship Allah and affirm His oneness,
Allah (-M) now m entions the falseness o f what the polytheists did o f
w orshipping that w hich did not possess any attributes o f perfection
at all and had no pow er to bring benefit or cause harm ; rather they
w ere m ere nam es, devoid o f m eaning, that the polytheists and their
ignorant, m isguided forefathers had m ade up. T hese w ere unreal
nam es that the idols did not deserve, and by giving them these names,
they deceived them selves and other m isguided people.
Gods such as these are not deserving o f even an atom ’s w eight
o f w orship. They called these idols by these nam es, claim ing that
they w ere derived from characteristics that they possessed. So the
nam e o f al-L at w as derived from the w ord al-ilah, m eaning that
w hich is deserving o f w orship; the nam e o f a l-‘U zza w as derived
from the w ord ‘azeez (m ighty), and the nam e o f M anat was derived
from the w ord al-mannan (bestow er o f blessings). This was a profane
distortion o f the nam es o f Allah, and a way o f associating others with
Him. But these nam es were devoid o f m eaning, because anyone who
possesses the slightest reasoning will realise that these attributes are
not applicable to these idols.
^D o you choose m ales for yourselves and for Him fem ales?^ In
other w ords, do you ascribe daughters to A llah, as you claim , and
want sons for yourselves?

51 W hat is referred to here is the w ish es and h op es o f the pagans for the
intercession o f th ese false gods.

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^T h at is indeed an unfair division)* for w hat unfairness can be


greater than a division that im plicitly gives precedence to the created
slave over his C reator? Exalted be Allah far above w hat they say.
ffThey are no m ore than nam es you have nam ed, you and your
forefathers, for w hich A llah has not sent dow n any authority)* that
is, there is no p ro o f or evidence for the soundness o f y o u r view.
A nything for which Allah did not send dow n any authority is false
and corrupt, and is not to be taken as religion. T hey them selves
were not follow ing any p ro o f to give them certainty about w hat they
believed.
R ather w hat led them to that corrupt b e lie f w as conjecture and
sheer ignorance, and their ow n inclination tow ards polytheism and
innovation that w as in accordance w ith th eir w him s and desires.
In fact there was nothing to m ake them follow conjecture, such as
lacking access to know ledge and guidance. T herefore A llah ( M)
said: ^although guidance has com e to them from their Lord)* that is,
guidance that show s them the w ay to affirm ation o f A llah ’s oneness
and to prophethood, and to all that people need. A llah has explained
all o f that in the m ost perfect and clearest manner, and has established
evidence and proof against them that require them and others to follow
it. So no one has any excuse or argum ent, after there has com e clear
explanation and proof.
As for what they follow, all that they base it on is conjecture, and it
will ultim ately lead to eternal m isery and punishm ent. So continuing
on this path is the utm ost foolishness and w orst w rongdoing. Yet
despite that they still indulged in w ishful th in k in g and deceived
them selves.
Hence A llah (4g) denounces those w ho claim that they will get
what they wish for, for they are lying:
^Is m an to have everything he w ishes for? Nay, to A llah belong
the h ereafter and the present)* so H e gives th e re o f to w hom ever

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He w ills, and w ithholds from w hom ever He w ills. So the m atter


is not in accordance w ith th eir w ishes or w ith th eir w him s and
desires.

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53:26. H ow ever many angels there may be in the heavens, their


intercession will be o f no avail except after Allah has given
leave to whomever He wills and is pleased with.

Here A llah (4c) denounces those w ho w orship others, be they


angels or otherwise, claim ing that they will benefit them and intercede
for them with Allah on the Day o f Resurrection.
^H ow ever many angels there may be in the heavens)?, noble angels
who are close to Allah,
^their intercession will be o f no avail)? that is, they cannot benefit
those who call upon them , attach them selves to them and pin their
hopes on them
^ ex cep t after A llah has given leave to w hom ever H e w ills and is
pleased with)? that is, both conditions must be met: A llah’s permission
for in tercession and H is being pleased w ith the one for w hom
intercession is made.
It is well known that no deed will be accepted except that which
is done sincerely for the sake o f Allah, in accordance with Islamic
teaching.
Therefore the polytheists will have no share o f the intercession o f
the intercessors, for they have barred the way and deprived themselves
o f the m ercy o f the M ost M erciful o f those who show mercy.

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53:27. Verily those who do not believe in the hereafter regard the angels
as female.
53:28. But they have no knowledge o f the matter. They follow nothing
but conjecture, but conjecture is no substitute for certain truth.
53:29. So pay no heed to those who turn away from Our message and
who seek nothing but the life o f this world.
53:30. That is the extent o f their knowledge. Verily your Lord knows
best who has gone astray from His path, and He knows best
who is rightly guided.

T hat is, those who ascribe partners to A llah and disbelieve in His
M essengers are those w ho do not believe in the hereafter, and the
reason w hy they do not believe in the hereafter is that they showed
audacity in their words and deeds, opposing Allah and His M essenger
( i l l ) , such as their saying that the angels w ere the daughters o f Allah.
Thus they did not declare their Lord to be above having offspring,
they did not respect or honour the angels, and they did not refrain
from regarding them as female.
In fact they have no know ledge o f such m atters, based on any text
from Allah or from His M essenger ( j i |) , and there is no evidence to
that effect on the basis o f com m on sense or rational thinking; rather
all know ledge points to the opposite o f their view, and indicates that
A llah is far above having offspring or a spouse, because He is one
and unique, the Eternal W ho begets not and is not begotten, and there

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is none like unto Him. A nd the angels are noble and close to Allah,
carrying out His com m ands; they:
^ . . .do not disobey A llah in w hatever He com m ands them , and they
do w hatever they are com m anded to d o .55 (at-Tahreem 66: 6)
The polytheists are only basing that abhorrent view on conjecture
that is no substitute for the truth, for b elief in the truth m ust be with
certainty that is based on definitive p ro o f and clear evidence.
Because this w as the attitude o f these people, who had no desire
to follow the truth, and their only aim was to follow w hat their own
selves desired, A llah com m anded His M essenger ( ^ ) to turn away
from those who turned aw ay from His m essage, w hich is the wise
rem inder and the m ighty Q u r’an, so they turned away from beneficial
know ledge and did not seek anything but the life o f this world. That
w as all they wanted.
It is well know n that people only strive for the things that they
want, so their efforts are lim ited to this world and its pleasures and
desires, therefore they take w hatever m easures will lead to that and
they hasten to m ake the m ost o f w hatever opportunity they may have.
^T h at is the extent o f their kn o w ledge^ that is, this is all they
know. A s for those w ho believe in the hereafter - the people o f
understanding and m ature thinking, w hose aspirations and goals
are focused on the hereafter - their know ledge is the best and m ost
sublim e o f know ledge, for it is based on the Book o f Allah and the
Sunnah o f His M essenger (»|§).
Allah ( ^ ) knows best who is deserving o f guidance, so He guides
him , and who does not deserve that, so H e leaves him to his own
devices and forsakes him, so he goes astray from the path o f Allah.
Hence A llah (4g) says: ^Verily your Lord know s best who has gone
astray from His path, and He know s best w ho is rightly g uided^
so He bestow s H is grace w here H e know s it is m ost fitting and
appropriate.

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53:31. To Allah belongs all that is in the heavens and all that is on
earth, and so He will requite those who do evil for their deeds,
and He will reward those who do good with the best reward,
53:32. those who avoid major sins and shameful deeds - except for
minor lapses. Verily your Lord is generous in forgiveness. He
knows you best, from when He brought you forth from the earth
and from when you were foetuses in your m others’ wombs, so
do not claim purity for yourselves, for He knows best who is
truly righteous.

H ere A llah (4c) tells us that He alone ow ns everything in this


world and the hereafter, and that everyone in the heavens and on earth
belongs to Allah, and He controls and directs them in the m anner o f a
great king with his slaves; they are subject to His will and decree, and
to His laws and regulations. He issues com m ands and prohibitions to
them and requites them on the basis w hat He com m ands and forbids
them to do; He rew ards those w ho obey and punishes those w ho
disobey.
*fand so He w ill requite those w ho do evil)* deeds, including
disbelief and lesser m isdeeds
«ffor their deeds)* that is, for w hat they do o f evil. He will requite
them with a severe punishm ent.
«fand He will rew ard those who do good)* by w orshipping Allah (•&)
and treating the creation o f Allah kindly

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^w ith the best rew ard^ that is, with the best rew ard in this w orld and
the hereafter, the greatest and m ost sublim e o f w hich is the pleasure
o f their Lord and attaining the bliss o f paradise.
T h en H e d escrib es them : ^ th o se w ho av oid m ajo r sins and
sham eful d eed s^ that is, they do w hat A llah enjoins upon them o f
obligatory deeds, the om ission o f w hich constitutes m ajor sin, and
they refrain from infractions o f m ajor prohibitions such as adultery,
drinking alcohol, consum ing riba, murder, and sim ilar m ajor sins.
^except for m inor lapses^ - this refers to m inor sins in w hich a
person does not persist or that he com m its m ore than once, but only
rarely. Sim ply doing that does not exclude a person from being one o f
those who do good. I f that happens when he is also doing obligatory
duties and refraining from w hat is prohibited, it will com e under the
forgiveness o f A llah which encom passes all things. Hence He says:
^V erily your Lord is generous in forgiveness^. Were it not for
His forgiveness, the land and the people would have been destroyed.
Were it not for His pardon and forbearance, the sky would have fallen
upon the earth, and He w ould have left no living creature on the face
o f the earth. Hence the Prophet (J^ |) said:
«The five daily prayers, one Jum u‘ah to another, and one Ram adan to
another, are expiation for w hatever com es in betw een them, so long
as m ajor sins are avoided.» (M uslim )
*|He know s you best, from when He brought you forth from the
earth and from w hen you w ere foetuses in your m others’ w om bs^
that is, Allah (4%) know s best all your circum stances, and He know s
your inherent nature o f w eakness and inability to do m uch o f what
A llah has enjoined upon you, and your strong inclination tow ards
som e prohibited m atters, for which there is a great deal o f tem ptation
and no strong im pediment.
Your w eakness was quite obvious w hen A llah brought you forth
from the earth, and when you w ere in your m others’ w om bs, and it

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is still present in you. Even though Allah (4s) has given you som e
strength to help you carry out what He enjoins you to do, the weakness
is still present.
B ecause He know s o f your w eak co n d itio n , d ivine w isdom
and generosity dictate that He should show er you w ith His mercy,
forgiveness and pardon, bestow His kindness upon you and rem ove
evil deeds and sins from you, especially if an individual’s aim is to
please his Lord at all tim es and he is striving to do that which will
bring him close to A llah m ost o f the time, and he is fleeing from the
sins that m ay lead to him incurring the w rath o f his Lord, yet he slips
up tim e after time. Allah is m ost generous and m erciful; He is more
m erciful to His slaves than a m other to her child.
Therefore such a person m ust be close to his L ord’s forgiveness,
and A llah will surely respond to him in all circum stances. H ence
Allah says: tfso do not claim purity for yourselves^ that is, do not
tell people that your souls are pure, by way o f self-praise.
^ fo r H e know s best w ho is truly rig h te o u s^ . T he place o f
righteousness is the heart, and it is A llah W ho sees it and will reward
what the heart contains o f righteousness and piety. As for people, they
cannot avail you in the slightest before A llah.

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53:33. Have you seen the one who turns away [from Allah],
53:34. who gives a little, and then stops?
53:35. Does he have knowledge o f the unseen, such that he has insight?52
53:36. Or has he not been informed o f what is in the scriptures o f Moosa
53:37. and o f Ibraheem, who fulfilled his duty:
53:38. that no bearer o f burdens can bear the burden o f another;
53:39. that man will have nothing but what he strives for;
53:40. that his deeds will be examined,
53:41. then he will be requited in full;
53:42. that the final destination is with your Lord;
53:43. that it is He Who makes people laugh and weep;
53:44. that it is He Who causes death and gives life;
53:45. that He created two genders, male and female,
53:46. from an ejected drop o f semen;
53:47. that incumbent upon Him is the second creation;
53:48. that it is He Who enriches and bestows wealth;

52 A l-W aleed ibn al-M ugheerah becam e a M uslim , so one o f the disbelievers
c riticised him and ask ed him w h y he had d on e that, and h e told him
that he feared the punishm ent o f A llah. The d isb eliever prom ised that he
w ou ld take the punishm ent in his stead, i f al-W aleed renounced Islam
and gave him som e o f his w ealth, so he did that. T his verse highlights
the fact that a l-W a leed had no k n o w le d g e o f the u n seen and co u ld
not be certain that that m an w o u ld take h is p u n ish m en t in h is stead.
(an-N asafi)

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53:49. that it is He Who is the Lord o f Sirius;


53:50. that He destroyed the ancient tribe o f ‘Ad
53:51. and Thamood, sparing none;
53:52. and [He destroyed] the people o f Nooh before them, who were
more wicked and more rebellious;
53:53. and He toppled the cities overthrown,
53:54. thus they were utterly enveloped by divine punishment?
53:55. Then which o f the favours o f your Lord do you doubt?
53:56. This [Prophet] is a wamer, like the wamers o f old.
53:57. The imminent [judgement] draws nigh;
53:58. none but Allah can disclose it.
53:59. Do you then wonder at this discourse [the Q ur’an]
53:60. and laugh [at it], and not weep,
53:61. while you remain heedless?
53:62. So prostrate to Allah and worship Him.

^H ave you seen^ the reprehensible condition o f the one w ho is


com m anded to worship his Lord and affirm His oneness, but he turns
aw ay from that?
If he feels like giving a little in charity, he will not persist in doing
so; rather he will becom e stingy, stop giving and w ithhold his charity.
Such a one is not charitable by nature; rather his nature is to turn
aw ay and be disobedient, and not to persist in doing charitable deeds.
Yet despite that, he praises h im self and raises h im self to a status over
his true status before Allah.
^D oes he have knowledge o f the unseen, such that he has insight^
into the unseen, and speaks o f it? O r does he attribute falsely to
Allah things that He never said, audaciously com bining bad deeds
w ith self-praise, as is indeed the case, because he know s that he
has no know ledge o f the unseen, and that if he m akes such a claim ,

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the definitive inform ation about the unseen that was brought by the
infallible Prophet ( i|§ ) is contrary to w hat he says, and that proves
that w hat he says is false?
^O r has h e ! nam ely the one who m akes this claim
«fnot been inform ed o f w hat is in the scriptures o f M oosa and o f
Ibraheem , w ho fulfilled his d u ty !' that is, he did everything w ith
w hich A llah tested him and that He com m anded him to do, o f laws
and the fundam ental and m inor m atters o f religion.
T hose scrip tu re s co n tain ed m any ru lin g s, am o n g the m ost
significant o f w hich are those m entioned here:
^th at no bearer o f burdens can bear the burden o f another; that man
will have nothing but w hat he strives fo r ! that is, each person who
strives will have his own deeds, both good and bad, and no one will
have a share o f the deeds and efforts o f any other person, nor will
anyone carry another person’s burden o f sin.
*fthat his deeds will be ex a m in e d ! in the hereafter, and his good
deeds will be distinguished from his bad deeds.
^then he will be requited in fu ll! that is, purely good deeds will be
requited with that w hich is the best (paradise); purely bad deeds will
be requited w ith that w hich is the w orst (hell); and deeds that are
m ixed will be requited accordingly. All o f creation will acknow ledge
the justice and kindness o f Allah, and will praise Allah for that, to
the extent that even w hen the people o f hell enter hell, their hearts
will be filled with praise o f their Lord and acknow ledgem ent o f His
perfect w isdom and their own loathsom eness; they will acknowledge
that it is they who brought it upon them selves and caused them selves
to m eet this bad fate.
The verse ^th at m an will have nothing but w hat he strives fo r!
is quoted as evidence by those who think that the rew ard for acts o f
worship cannot be given to anyone else, w hether alive or dead. They
say: that is because A llah says ^that m an will have nothing but w hat
he strives fo r ! (63:39), so the idea that the efforts o f others for his sake

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m ay benefit him is contrary to that. But this view is subject to further


discussion. In fact the verse indicates that each person will have only
w hat he strives for him self. This is true, and there is no disagreem ent
concerning that, but there is nothing in this verse to indicate that he
cannot benefit from the effort o f another person, if that person gives
the rew ard to him. By the sam e token, a m an has no w ealth but w hat
he ow ns, but that does not m ean that he cannot take possession o f
w hat another person gives him o f the latter’s own wealth.
^th at the final destination is w ith your L ord^ that is, all things
will ultim ately com e to Him and all creatures will return to H im at
the resurrection. The final destination is w ith Him in all cases, and
He possesses the ultim ate know ledge, wisdom , m ercy and all perfect
attributes.
*jthat it is He W ho m akes people laugh and w eep^ that is, it is He
W ho creates the causes that lead to laughter and w eeping, nam ely
good and bad, jo y and happiness, w orry and sorrow, and there is great
divine w isdom in that.
^ th a t it is H e W ho causes death and gives life ^ that is, H e is
the only One W ho brings into existence or causes the cessation o f
existence, W ho brought people into being, and issued com m ands and
prohibitions to them. He will bring them back after they die, and will
requite them for those deeds that they did in this world.
«fthat H e created tw o g en d e rs^ w hich He explains by saying:
^m ale and fem ale^. This is general in m eaning and includes all living
beings, both those that speak and those that cannot speak. It is He
alone W ho creates them
cjfrom an ejected drop o f sem enp. This is one o f the greatest proofs
o f the perfect nature o f His pow er and that He alone is Alm ighty, as
He brought all these living beings, sm all and great, into being from
an insignificant drop o f sem en, w hich is a w orthless liquid. Then
He causes it to grow and perfects it, until it reaches its potential and
becom es a hum an being, w ho will either rise up to the highest status

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with those on high, or will sink to the w orst status am ong the lowest
o f the low.
Hence Allah refers to the beginning o f creation in order to prove
that recreation is easy for Him, as He says:
«fthat incum bent upon H im is the second creation)* w hen He will
bring people forth from their graves and gather them together on the
appointed day, when He will requite them for their deeds, both good
and bad.
^ th a t it is H e W ho enriches and bestow s w e a lth ^ that is, He
enriches people by m aking it easy for them to earn a livelihood
through trade and different professions or crafts
^an d w e alth ^ that is, H e bestow s all kinds o f w ealth abundantly
upon His slaves, and people becom e ow ners o f m uch o f it and many
item s becom e their property. This is by His kindness tow ards His
slaves, for all blessings com e from Him , w hich requires people to
give thanks to Him and to w orship Him alone, w ith no partner or
associate.
*fthat it is He W ho is the Lord o f Sirius]* - Sirius is a star, also
known as the Dog Star. Allah singles it out for m ention, although He
is the Lord o f all things, because this star w as w orshipped during the
jahiliyah. Thus Allah (M ) highlights the fact that the like o f what the
polytheists w orship is controlled and created, so how can it be taken
as a god alongside Allah?
*fthat He destroyed the ancient tribe o f ‘Adi* - they were the people
o f Hood ( H O , w ho rejected Hood, so Allah destroyed them with a
furious violent wind.
^and T ham ood^, who w ere the people o f Salih (H O . A llah sent him
to Tham ood, but they rejected him. Then A llah sent the she-cam el
to them as a sign, but they ham strung her and rejected him. So Allah
destroyed them , ^sparing none]*; rather He destroyed them to
the last man.

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ffand [He destroyed] the people o f N ooh before them , w ho w ere


m ore w ick ed and m ore rebellious)* than th ese nations, so A llah
destroyed them and drow ned them in the sea.
^an d He toppled the cities overthrown)*, w hich w ere the cities o f
the people o f Loot (H O . Allah afflicted them w ith a punishm ent with
w hich He had never punished any o f the nations before: He turned
their houses upside down and rained down upon them a show er o f
stones o f baked clay. Hence He says:
^th u s they w ere utterly enveloped by divine punishment)* that
is, the terrible, painful punish m ent enveloped them in an utterly
indescribable manner.
^T hen w hich o f the favours o f your Lord do you doubt?)* That is,
which o f the blessings and bounties o f Allah do you doubt, O man? For
the visible blessings o f Allah cannot be doubted; there is no blessing
but it is from Him, and none can w ard o ff punishm ent except Him.
^T his [Prophet] is a w am er, like the w am ers o f old)* that is, this
Q urashi, Hashim i M essenger, M uham m ad ibn ‘A bdullah (j|§ ), is not
w ithout precedent am ong the M essengers; rather there w ere earlier
M essengers who cam e before him , who called to the sam e m essage
as him. So w hy are you so averse to his m essage? On w hat grounds
do you reject his call?
A re not his character and attitude the m ost sublim e character and
attitude o f the noble M essengers?
Does he not call to all that is good and prohibit all that is evil?
H as he not brought the H oly Q u r’an w hich no falsehood can
approach from before it or from behind it; (it is) a revelation from
One W ho is M ost Wise, Praisew orthy (41: 42)1
Did Allah not destroy those who rejected the noble M essengers
who cam e before him?
So what is there to prevent a sim ilar punishm ent befalling those
who disbelieve in M uham m ad (i|§ ), the forem ost o f the M essengers,

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the leader o f the righteous w hose limbs will shine (with the traces o f
w udoo’, in the hereafter)?
^T he im m inent [judgem ent] draw s n ig h ! and the resurrection is
at hand, for it is tim e is near and its signs have appeared.
^n one but A llah can disclose i t ! that is, w hen the R esurrection
will com e and the prom ised punishm ent will befall them.
Then A llah warns those w ho reject the m essage o f the M essenger
M uham m ad ( « ||) and reject what he has brought o f the Holy Q u r’an:
f(Do you then w onder at this discourse [the Q u r’a n ] ! that is, do you
wonder at this discourse, which is the best and noblest o f speech, and
regard it as som ething extraordinary?
This stem s from their ignorance, m isguidance and stubbornness.
O therw ise it is a discourse w hich, w hen it speaks it tells the truth,
and when it says som ething it is a decisive w ord and is no joke (86:
13-14). It is the m ighty Q u r’an, which if it had been sent dow n upon
a m ountain, you w ould have seen it hum bled and rent asunder out o f
fear o f Allah (59: 21). It increases the people o f w isdom in wisdom ,
m ature thinking, steadfastness, faith and assurance. W hat should be
seen as strange is a m an w hose reasoning m akes him find it strange;
it is am azing how foolish and m isguided he is.
^and laugh [at it], and not w e e p ! that is, they resorted to laughter
and ridicule w hen dealing with it, even though w hat should be the
case is that it should have an im pact on their hearts and souls, and
they should shed tears w hen they hear its com m ands and prohibitions,
listen to its prom ises and w arnings, and pay attention to its true glad
tidings.
^w hile you remain h eedless! that is, heedless o f it, distracted from
reflecting upon it. That is because o f your lack o f rational thinking
and religious com m itm ent, for if you w orshipped Allah and sought
His pleasure in all situations, you would not be in this state which
people o f understanding would not like to be in. Hence Allah OSs) says:

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^S o prostrate to Allah and w orship H im ^. The com m and to prostrate


to Allah in particular serves to highlight the virtue o f this action, which
is the core and essence o f w orship, the core and essence o f w hich
is hum ility before A llah and subm ission to Him. Prostration is the
greatest manifestation o f hum ility and submission, in which a person’s
heart and body are in a state o f hum ility, as he places his noblest
faculties on the lowly ground, w hich is the place w here feet tread.
Then Allah enjoins w orship in general term s, w hich includes all
that A llah loves and is pleased with o f w ords and deeds, both visible
and hidden.

T his is the end o f the com m entary on Soorat an-Najm .


A ll praise and thanks are for A llah , and m ay the b lessin gs and
peace o f A llah be upon Prophet M uham m ad ( ? i | ) , his fam ily, and
his C om panions abundantly until the D ay o f Judgem ent.

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Soorat al-Qamar
(M akki)

In the name o f Allah,


the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful

0 _________ __________0

(o-\ :

54:1. The Hour has drawn nigh and the moon has split.
54:2. But whenever they see a sign, they turn away and say: Incessant
magic!
54:3. They deny the truth and follow their own whims and desires,
but every matter will reach its inevitable conclusion.
54:4. Surely there have come to them stories [of earlier nations] that
should serve to deter them,
54:5. in which there is profound wisdom, but the warnings are o f no
avail.

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Here Allah (*Jg) tells us that the Hour, which is the resurrection, has
drawn nigh and its tim e is at hand, yet despite that these disbelievers
still deny it and are m aking no preparations for its arrival, although
A llah is show ing them great signs o f its approach, that should make
people believe.
O ne o f the g reatest signs o f the truth o f the m essage brought
by M uham m ad ibn ‘A bdullah ( i |§ ) is that w hen the disbelievers
dem anded that he show them m iracles to prove the soundness and
truthfulness o f the m essage that he brought, he pointed to the moon
which, by A llah’s leave, split in two, one h a lf over the m ountain o f
A bu Q ubays and the other over the m ountain o f Q u ‘ay q i‘an. The
p oly th eists and others saw this great sign, w hich occurred in the
upper realm , w here no hum an could create illusions by m eans o f
magic.
They saw som ething the like o f which they had never seen or even
heard o f happening to the previous M essengers. They w ere shocked
by it, but faith did not enter their hearts and Allah did not will good
for them , so they resorted to their regular w ay o f false accusations
and transgression, saying: M uham m ad has bew itched us. But the sign
o f that having truly happened w as to ask travellers w ho cam e to you:
if he was able to bew itch you, he w ould not be able to bew itch those
w ho w ere not present like you; so they asked every traveller who
came to the city, and they told them that they had seen that, but they
still said: Incessant magic! - that is, M uham m ad ( 5 l|) has bew itched
us and has bew itched others.
T hese are accusations that nobody could be fooled by except
the m ost foolish o f people, the m ost m isguided and m ost lacking in
reason. They did not only deny this sign; rather they denied every sign
that cam e to them , for they w ere prepared to counter the signs with
falsehood and reject them . H ence A llah says: ^B u t w henever they
see a sign, they turn a w a y !. This does not refer only to the splitting

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o f the m oon; rather they reject every sign and have no intention
o f follow ing truth and guidance. T heir only aim is to follow their
whim s and desires, hence Allah says: tjThey deny the truth and follow
their ow n w him s and desires)*. This is like the verse in w hich Allah
says:
t(But if they do not respond to you, then know that they only follow
their ow n d esire s...)* (al-Qasas 28: 30)
If their aim was to follow true guidance, they would definitely have
believed and followed M uham m ad (;!§ ), because Allah showed them
at his hands clear signs, p ro o f and definitive evidence.
^but every m atter will reach its inevitable conclusion)* that is, until
now this m atter has not reached its conclusion, but it will do so, then
the believer will be enjoying the gardens o f bliss and the forgiveness
and pleasure o f Allah, w hilst the disbeliever will be subjected to the
wrath and punishm ent o f A llah, forever and ever.
Allah (4s) says - explaining that they have no valid aim and are
not follow ing guidance: ^Surely there have com e to them stories [of
earlier nations])* that is, stories o f earlier and later nations, and clear
m iracles
dthat should serve to deter them)* that is, they should deter them from
their error and m isguidance.
^in which there is profound wisdom)* from Allah, that establishes
His proof against the disobedient, arid no one has any argument against
Allah (4s) after the com ing o f the M essengers.
^b u t the w arnings are o f no avail^ - this is like the verse in which
A llah (4s) says:
^Verily, those against w hom the decree o f your Lord is fulfilled will
not believe, even if every sign w ere to com e to them , until they see
[for them selves] the painful punishment.)* (Yoonus 10: 96-97)

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' -J5& $#3t j>; gauiW ©


(A-1 ^

54:6. So turn away from them. On the day when the caller calls them
to something terrible,
54:7. with eyes downcast they will come forth from their graves like
swarming locusts,
54:8. rushing headlong towards the caller. The disbelievers will say:
This will be a hard day!

Here Allah 0 s ) says to His M essenger ( 3| | ) : It has becom e clear


that there is no w ay the disbelievers w ill be guided, so there is no
option left but to turn aw ay from them.
«(So turn aw ay from them)* and w ait for the m om entous day and
terrible horror to befall them.
That will be w hen ^the caller^ nam ely Israfeel (S |5 0 ^calls them
to som ething terrible)* that is, to som ething aw ful that people w ould
be scared of, and nothing m ore terrible and m ore distressing than
it has ever been seen. Israfeel will sound a blast on the Trum pet, at
which the dead will emerge from their graves for the final judgem ent.
^w ith eyes downcast)* because o f fear and dread that has reached
their hearts; their eyes will be dow ncast hum bly for that reason.
«fthey will come forth from their graves like swarming locusts)* that is,
because o f their large numbers and their movement, they will resemble
a swarm o f locusts covering the earth with their huge num bers,
^rushing headlong towards the caller^ that is, hastening to respond to
the call o f the caller. This indicates that the caller will sum m on them

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and com m and them to attend the place o f gathering on the Day o f
Resurrection, and they will answ er his call and hasten to respond to it.
^T he disbelievers)* whose punishm ent has com e
^w ill say: This will be a hard day!)* This is like the verse in which
Allah (4s) says:
*[Not easy for the disbelievers.)* (al-Muddath-thir 74:10)
W hat this im plies is that it will be easy for the believers.

o 0

54:9. Before them the people o f Nooh also disbelieved. They rejected
Our slave and said: He is a madman, and he was rebuked and
threatened.
54:10. So he called upon his Lord, saying: I am overwhelmed, so help
me!
54:11. So We opened the gates o f heaven with water pouring down in
torrents,
54:12. And We caused the earth to burst forth with springs, then the
waters met for a purpose that had already been decreed.
54:13. We carried him on a [vessel] made o f planks and nails,
54:14. sailing under Our watchful eyes; a recompense for one who had
been rejected.
54:15. Verily We have left it as a sign; is there then any who will pay
heed?

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54:16. Then how were My punishment and My warnings?


54:17. We have indeed made the Q u r’an easy to understand and
remember; is there then any who will pay heed?

Having mentioned the situation o f those who rejected His M essenger


( - i |) and that the signs did not benefit them or have any im pact on
them at all, Allah (4s) w arns them and alerts them by m entioning the
punishm ent o f past nations w ho rejected the M essengers, and how
Allah destroyed them and sent His punishm ent upon them.
A llah m entions the people o f N ooh, the first M essenger w hom
A llah sent to people who w orshipped idols, and he called them to
affirm the oneness o f Allah and to w orship Him alone, with no partner
or associate. But they refused to give up polytheism and said (to one
another):
cL.Do not forsake your gods; do not forsake Wadd, Suw a‘, Yaghooth,
Ya‘ooq and N asr.p (Nooh 71: 23)
N ooh kept on calling them to A llah, by night and by day, in
private and in public, but that only increased them in stubbornness,
transgression, opposition and criticism o f their Prophet. Hence Allah
says here:
^T hey rejected O ur slave and said: He is a m adm an^, because they
claim ed that w hat they and their forefathers follow ed o f polytheism
and m isguidance was w hat was supported by reason, and that w hat
N ooh ( H O brought was ignorance and m isguidance, that could only
com e from those w ho w ere insane.
B ut they w ere lying and turn in g upside dow n facts that w ere
proven according to religious teaching and rational thinking. W hat
he brought was the established truth w hich guides enlightened and
sound-thinking m inds to true guidance, light and maturity, whereas
w hat they were following was ignorance and clear m isguidance.

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«fand he w as rebuked and threatened)* that is, his people rebuked him
and told him o ff w hen he called them to A llah (4e).
But they did not stop at not believing in him or at rejecting him ; they
w ent to great lengths in trying to harm him as m uch as they could.
This is how all the enem ies o f the M essengers w ere and how they
treated their Prophets.
A t th at p o in t, N o o h c a lled upon h is L ord, saying: ^1 am
overwhelmed)* and cannot stand up to them, because no one am ong
his people believed except very few, but they had no strength to resist
his people.
«(so help me)*, O Lord, against them . A ccording to another verse,
he said:
^...M y Lord, do not leave on earth a single living soul from am ong
the disbelievers.)* (N ooh 71: 26)
A llah answ ered his request and helped him against his people.
Allah (4s) tells us here: ^So We opened the gates o f heaven with water
pouring down in torrents)* that is, a great deal o f w ater pouring down.
^A n d We caused the earth to burst forth w ith springs)*, so the
heavens began sending down an extraordinary am ount o f water, and
the earth burst forth with springs
4 then the w aters^ nam ely the w aters o f the heaven and the w aters
o f the earth
f|m et for a purpose that had already been decreed)* by A llah. In
other words, A llah had ordained it and decreed it from eternity as a
punishm ent for those transgressors and evildoers.
^W e carried him on a [vessel] m ade o f planks and nails^ that is,
We saved O ur slave N ooh on the ark that was m ade o f planks and
nails; in other words, it was m ade o f planks that w ere held together
with nails.
^sailing under O ur watchful eyes)* that is, it sailed with N ooh and
those who believed with him, and the different kinds o f creatures that

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he took on board w ith him , under the care o f Allah, W ho protected


them from drow ning, for He is the best protector and best disposer
o f affairs.
^ a recom pense for one w ho had been rejected^ that is, We did
w hat We did for Nooh, saving him from the w idespread drowning,
as a reco m p en se for him after his p eo p le had rejected him and
disbelieved in him , but he patiently persisted in calling them and
continued to obey the com m and o f Allah, from w hich no one could
deter him or stop him. This is like the verse in w hich A llah (4fe) says
o f him:
^It was said: O Nooh, disem bark w ith safety granted by Us, and with
blessings upon you and some o f the com m unities [who will spring
from] those who are w ith y o u ... ^ (Hood 11: 48)
It m ay be that w hat is m eant is: We destroyed the people o f Nooh
and did w hat we did to them o f punishing and disgracing them as a
requital for their disbelief and stubbornness.
^Verily We have left it as a sign; is there then any who will pay
heed?^ That is, We have left the story o f N ooh w ith his people as a
sign so that people m ay pay heed and realise that w hoever disobeys
the M essengers and stubbornly rejects them , A llah will destroy them
w ith w idespread severe punishm ent. O r it m ay be that the pronoun
^ it^ refers to the ark and ships in general, and that A llah taught His
slave Nooh ( H O how to m ake them , then Allah (4g) left that craft
am ong the people as an indication and sign o f His m ercy and care
for His creation, and o f His great might.
dis there then any who will pay heed?p That is, is there any who
will pay heed to the signs, pay attention and reflect upon them , for
they are very clear and straightforw ard?
^T hen how w ere M y punishm ent and M y w arn ings?^ T hat is,
how do you see the painful punishm ent o f Allah and His w arnings
w hich left no excuse for anyone?

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^W e have indeed m ade the Q u r’an easy to understand and


rem em ber; is there then any w ho will pay heed?^ that is, We have
m ade the w ords o f this Holy Q u r’an easy to m em orise and recite,
and We have m ade its m eanings easy to understand and know,
because it is the best o f speech in w ording, the truest in m eaning
and the clearest in interpretation. So for everyone who reads it with
focus o f m ind, A llah m akes it easy for him to attain w hat he seeks
o f know ledge. U nderstanding and rem em bering includes everything
that those who seek know ledge w ant to know o f w hat is lawful and
unlawful, com m ands and prohibitions, rulings o f requital, exhortation
and stories from which to learn lessons, w hat one needs to know o f
true beliefs, and true stories (o f the past and future).
Hence know ledge o f the Q u r’an - in term s o f both m em orising
and understanding - is the easiest o f know ledge, and the noblest o f
all branches o f know ledge. It is beneficial know ledge w hich, if a
person seeks it, he will receive divine help to attain it. O ne o f the
early generations said concerning this verse: there is no seeker o f
know ledge but he will be divinely helped to attain it. Therefore Allah
calls His slaves to study the Q u r’an and pay heed (to its contents) by
saying: ^is there then any who will pay heed?^

54:18. ‘Ad disbelieved. Then how were My punishm ent and My


warnings?
54:19. So We sent against them a furious cold wind on an unremittingly
inauspicious day,
54:20. which swept the people away as if they were trunks o f uprooted
palm trees.

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54:21. Then how were My punishment and My warnings?


54:22. We have indeed made the Q u r’an easy to understand and
remember; is there then any who will pay heed?

‘Ad w ere a w ell-know n tribe in Yemen, to w hom A llah sent Hood


(S*5b), to call them to affirm His oneness and w orship Him alone, but
they rejected him. So A llah sent against them «ja furious cold wind)*
that is, a very powerful wind.
^on an unrem ittingly inauspicious day)* that is, a day that brought
severe punishm ent and m isery upon them
^unremittingly)* - the punishm ent lasted for seven consecutive nights
and eight consecutive days.
«fwhich sw ept the people away)* because it w as so strong and
fierce; it lifted them up to the sky, then hurled them dow n to earth
and destroyed them. Thus they becam e ^ as if they w ere trunks o f
uprooted palm trees)* that is, as if their bodies, after their destruction,
were like the hollow trunks o f palm trees that had been struck by the
w ind and fallen to the ground. How w orthless people are to A llah if
they disobey His com m ands.
^T hen how were My punishm ent and My warnings?)* By Allah, it
was a painful punishment, and the warnings left no excuse for anyone.
^W e have indeed m ade the Q u r’an easy to u nderstand and
rem em ber; is there then any who will pay heed?)* A llah repeats this
phrase, out o f m ercy and care for His slaves, as He calls them to that
w hich is in their best interests in this w orld and the hereafter.

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54:23. Thamood rejected the warnings.


54:24. They said: What! Are we to follow a single human from among
ourselves? Then we would surely have fallen into error and
madness!
54:25. Has the message been sent to him alone, out o f all o f us? Nay,
he is an insolent liar.
54:26. Tomorrow they will know who the insolent liar is.
54:27. Verily We are sending the she-camel as a test for them, so watch
them [O Salih] and be patient,
54:28. and tell them that the water is to be shared between them; each
will be allowed to drink in turn.
54:29. But they called their companion, and he seized [the she-camel]
and hamstrung her.
54:30. Then how were My punishment and My warnings?
54:31. Verily We sent against them a single blast, and they became like
dry sticks collected to build a pen for livestock.
54:32. We have indeed made the Q u r’an easy to understand and
remember; is there then any who will pay heed?

^Thamood)? who w ere the w ell-know n tribe in the land o f al-H ijr
^rejected the w arnings^ o f their Prophet Salih ( H O , when he called
them to w orship A llah alone with no partner or associate, and warned
them o f the consequences if they disobeyed him.
But they rejected his m essage and w ere arrogant tow ards him ;
they said, out o f arrogance and insolence: «|What! Are we to follow a

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single hum an from am ong ourselves?^ T hat is, how can we follow a
hum an and not an angel, w ho is from am ong ourselves and not from
am ong others who are greater than us in p eo p le’s view?
Furtherm ore, he is ju st one man. «(Then)*, if we follow him in that
case, ^w e w ould surely have fallen into error and m adness!^ T hat is,
we will be lost and doom ed.
These words stem m ed from their m isguidance and w retchedness,
for they w ere reluctant to follow a hum an M essenger, but they were
not reluctant to w orship trees, rocks and images.
^H as the m essage been sent to him alone, out o f all o f us?^ That is,
how could Allah single him out from am ong us and send the m essage
down to him ? W hat m akes him so special out o f all o f us?
This is an objection on the part o f the disbelievers to Allah, and
they kept on presenting this argum ent, and rejecting the call o f the
M essengers on the basis thereof. A llah responded to this specious
argum ent by m eans o f w hat the M essengers said to their nations:
dT heir M essengers said to them: Indeed, we are but hum an beings
like yourselves, but A llah bestow s His favour upon w hom ever He
wills o f His slaves...)* (Ibraheem 14: 11)
A llah blessed the M essengers by bestow ing upon them sublim e
attributes and characteristics that made them fit to convey the message
o f their Lord and be chosen to receive His revelation.
By His mercy and wisdom, they were human beings, for if they had
been angels, hum ans w ould not have been able to leam from them. If
A llah had caused them to be from am ong the angels, He w ould have
hastened the punishm ent for those who disbelieved in them.
T he intention behind these w ords that T ham ood said to their
Prophet Salih was a rejection o f him; hence they judged him in an
unfair m anner and said: ^N ay, he is an insolent liar)* that is, he tells
m any lies and does a great deal o f evil.

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M ay Allah curse them ; how foolish and evil they were, and how
badly they confronted the sincere people, w ith insulting w ords. It
is no w onder that A llah punished them w hen they w ent too far in
transgression.
Allah sent the she-cam el, w hich was one o f the greatest blessings
that He bestow ed upon them , one o f the signs o f Allah. H er m ilk was
sufficient for all o f them.
das a test for them]? that is, as a trial for them
«fso w atch them [O Salih] and be patient^ that is, be patient in calling
them ; w atch and see w hat happens to them , and see w hether they will
believe or disbelieve.
dand tell them that the w ater is to be shared betw een them]? tell
them that the w ater source from w hich they drink is to be shared
betw een them and the she-cam el; she is to drink one day and they
are to drink another day, according to a set schedule.
^each will be allow ed to drink in turn]? that is, the one w hose
turn it is m ay go there, and the one w hose turn it is not is to be kept
away.
«|But they called their com panion^ w ho was the one who actually
ham strung the she-cam el; he was the m ost w retched m em ber o f the
tribe.
«{and he seized [the she-cam el] and ham strung her^, doing w hat they
instructed him to do.
^T hen how w ere M y punishm ent and M y w arnings?^ They were
severe indeed; A llah sent against them a blast and an earthquake that
destroyed them to the last man, but Allah saved Salih and those who
believed with him.
«[We have indeed m ade the Q u r’an easy to u nderstand and
rem em ber; is there then any who will pay heed?]?

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o o

54:33. The people o f Loot rejected the warnings.


54:34. We sent against them a violent squall o f pebbles, [which
destroyed them all] except the family o f Loot; We delivered
them before dawn
54:35. by Our grace. Thus do We reward those who give thanks.
54:36. He had indeed warned them o f Our punishing onslaught, but
they doubted the warnings.
54:37. They demanded that he let them have their way with his guests.
So We blinded their eyes, [saying]: Taste My punishment and
My warnings.
54:38. Early in the morning a lasting punishment overtook them.
54:39. Taste My punishment and My warnings.
54:40. We have indeed made the Q u r’an easy to understand and
remember; is there then any who will pay heed?

^T h e people o f Loot rejected the warnings)? w hen Loot )


called them to w orship A llah alone, with no partner or associate, and
he forbade them to ascribe partners to Allah or com m it shameful deeds
that were unprecedented am ong other nations.
But they rejected him and persisted in their polytheism and evil
deeds, to the extent that w hen the people o f Loot heard about the
angels who cam e to Loot in the guise o f guests, they cam e rushing,

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wanting to com m it sham eful deeds with them and dem anding that
he let them have their way w ith them.
So A llah com m anded Jibreel OHO to blind their eyes w ith his
wing, and their Prophet w arned them o f the punishm ent o f Allah,
^but they doubted the w arnings^.
^E arly in the m orning a lasting punishm ent overtook them jj -
Allah overturned their houses on top o f them , turning them upside
down, and He follow ed that with a show er o f stones o f baked clay,
one after another, specifically m arked, and kept with your Lord for
the evildoers.
But A llah saved Loot and his fam ily from that great distress, as a
reward to them for their gratitude to their Lord and their worship o f
Him alone, with no partner or associate.

54:41. Indeed warnings came to the people o f Pharaoh.


54:42. They rejected all o f Our signs, so We seized them with the
vehement grip o f One Who is Almighty, Omnipotent.

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54:43. Are your disbelievers [O Quraysh] better than those, or have


you been promised immunity in the [earlier] scriptures?
54:44. Or do they say: We are a united group, bound to prevail?
54:45. This group will be defeated, and they will turn and flee.
54:46. What is more, the Hour is their appointed time, and the Hour
will be more calamitous and more bitter.
54:47. Verily the evildoers are in error and will be in the raging fire.
54:48. On the day when they will be dragged in the fire on their faces,
[it will be said to them]: Taste the agony o f hell!
54:49. Verily We have created all things according to a determined
measure.
54:50. Our command is but a single [word, which is fulfilled] like the
twinkling o f an eye .53
54:51. We have destroyed many a nation like yourselves [O Quraysh];
is there then any who will pay heed?
54:52. Everything they did is recorded in the books [of their deeds],
54:53. and everything, small or great, is written down.
54:54. Verily the righteous will be in the midst o f gardens and rivers,
54:55. seated in honour in the presence o f a Sovereign Omnipotent.

^Indeed w arnings cam e to the people o f Pharaoh)*. A llah sent


M oosa to them , and supported him w ith clear signs and irrefutable
m iracles, and caused them to w itness signs that H e had never caused
anyone else to w itness. B ut they rejected all the signs o f A llah, so
He seized them w ith the vehem ent grip o f O ne W ho is A lm ighty,
O m nipotent, and drow ned them in the sea - him and his troops.
The purpose behind recounting these stories is to w arn the people
and those w ho disbelieved in M uham m ad ( ^ ) . H ence A llah says:

53 T his is like the verse in Soorat Y a Seen in w h ich A llah says:


^H is w ay, w hen H e d ecrees a matter, is m erely to say to it, ‘B e !’ and it
is.)* (Ya Seen 36: 82)

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^A re your disbelievers [O Q uraysh] better than th o se^ that is, are


these people who rejected the best o f the M essengers better than those
disbelievers whose destruction Allah tells us about and describes what
happened to them ? I f they are better than them , then they could be
saved from the punishm ent and there would not befall them that which
befell those evil people. But that is not the case; if they are not w orse
than them , then they are not better than them either.
dor have you been prom ised immunity in the [earlier] scriptures?^
That is, has Allah given you a prom ise and a covenant in the scriptures
that He sent dow n to the Prophets, so you believe that you will be
saved on the basis o f a prom ise from Allah?
T hat is not the case; in fact it is not even possible, according
to reason or according to the texts, for them to have been granted
immunity in the divinely-revealed Books that are based on justice and
w isdom. It is not w ise for people such as these stubborn disbelievers
w ho rejected the best o f the M essengers and the dearest o f them to
A llah to be saved. So there is nothing left for them but to have their
own strength by which to prevail, and indeed A llah (-Sg) tells us that
they said: ^W e are a united group, bound to prevail)?.
Allah (4g) says, highlighting their w eakness and the fact that they
will be defeated: ^T his group will be defeated, and they will turn and
flee^. And that happened as He foretold: Allah defeated their great
gathering on the day o f Badr, and killed m any o f their leaders and
prom inent figures. Thus they w ere hum iliated, and A llah granted
victory to His religion, His Prophet (J§§) and His party, the believers.
M oreover, they will have an appointed tim e w here the first and
the last o f them will be gathered together, as will those am ong them
who suffered in this world, and those who enjoyed the pleasures o f
life. Hence A llah says: ^W hat is m ore, the H our is their appointed
time)? when they will be requited and scores will be settled with them
on the basis o f justice.

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dand the Hour will be m ore calam itous and m ore bitter)* that is, it will
be m ore serious, m ore difficult and m ore distressing than anything
one could im agine or that could possibly cross o n e’s mind.
^Verily the evildoers)* that is, those who com m itted a lot o f evil
deeds and grave sins, such as ascribing partners to A llah and other
acts o f disobedience
t(are in error and will be in the raging fire)* they are m isguided in this
w orld, straying from know ledge and straying from righteous deeds
that could save them from divine punishm ent, and on the D ay o f
Resurrection, they will find them selves suffering a painful punishm ent
in the fire that will rage around them and bum their bodies until it
reaches their hearts.
«fOn the day w hen they w ill be dragged in the fire on their
faces)* - the face is the noblest part o f the body, w here pain is felt
m ore intensely than pain elsew here in the body. Thus they will be
humiliated and disgraced, and it will be said to them: ^Taste the agony
o f hell! )* That is, taste the pain o f the fire, and its anger, rage and
flames.
^V erily We have created all things according to a determ ined
measure)* - this includes all creatures, in the upper and low er realms.
Allah alone created them and they have no creator other than Him;
no one had any share in their creation.
A llah created them according to a decree o f w hich He had prior
know ledge and that had been w ritten by His pen w ith regard to its
tim ing and predeterm ined m easure, and all its characteristics and
qualities. That is easy for Allah, therefore He says:
^ O u r com m and is but a single [w ord, w hich is fulfilled] like the
tw inkling o f an eye)*. W hen He w ills a thing, He m erely says to it,
‘B e!’ and it is as He w ills it, like the tw inkling o f an eye, w ith no
resistance or reluctance (on the part o f the thing in question).

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^ We have destroyed many a nation like yourselves^ o f the previous


nations w ho did deeds such as you have done and disbelieved as you
have disbelieved.
«[is there then any w ho will pay heed?)? That is, is there anyone who
will pay heed and realise that A llah ’s way o f dealing with the earlier
and later generations is the same, and that ju st as His w isdom decreed
that the earlier evildoers be destroyed, these people are just like them,
and there is no difference betw een the two groups?
^Everything they did is recorded in the books [of their deeds])? that
is, all that they have done, good or bad, is already recorded against
them in the books o f their deeds,
^and everything, sm all or great, is written down)?.
This is the reality o f the divine will and decree, that A llah (4g)
know s all things and has w ritten them dow n w ith Him in al-Lawh
al-M ahfoodh. W hatever Allah wills happens and w hatever He does
not will does not happen.
W hatever befalls a person could not have missed him and whatever
m isses him could not have befallen him.
^Verily the righteous)? who fear Allah by doing what He commands
and refraining from w hat He forbids, who avoid ascription o f partners
to A llah and sins both m ajor and minor,
^w ill be in the m idst o f gardens and riv ers^ that is, they will be in
gardens o f bliss in which there is that which no eye has seen, no ear has
heard, nor has it ever crossed the m ind o f man, such as fruitful trees,
flowing rivers, lofty palaces, elegant houses, delicious food and drink,
beautiful hoor, and splendid gardens in paradise, the good pleasure
o f the Sovereign Judge, and attaining closeness to Him. Hence He
says:
^seated in honour in the presence o f a Sovereign Omnipotent)?.
A fter that, do not ask about w hat their Lord will give them o f honour
and generosity, and w hat He w ill bestow upon them o f im m ense

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blessings. M ay A llah m ake us am ong them and not deprive us o f the


best o f that which is with Him because o f our evil deeds.

This is the end o f the com m entary on Soorat al-Qamar.


A ll praise and thanks are for A llah, and m ay the b lessin g s and
peace o f A llah be upon Prophet M uham m ad (iH §), his fam ily, and
his C om panions abundantly until the D ay o f Judgem ent.

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55.

Soorat ar-Rahman
(M akki)

In the name o f Allah,


the Most Gracious, the M ost Merciful

(J) (J) 'I


( jljk o n lj J -

\pJ\j © <££uK
j\ j 1^4 © o ^ J 'j © y

55:1. The Most Gracious


55:2. has taught the Q ur’an;
55:3. He created man
55:4. and taught him speech.
55:5. The sun and the moon follow their calculated courses,
55:6. and the stars and trees prostrate [to Allah].
55:7. He raised the heaven and enjoined justice

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55:8. so that you should not transgress the limits o f justice.


55:9. Therefore establish weights and measures with justice, and do
not give short measure.
55:10. He has spread out the earth for all creatures,
55:11. in which there are fruits and date palms with spathes ,54
55:12. and grains with leafy stems, and fragrant plants.
55:13. Then which o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny ?55

This great soorah begins with the nam e o f A llah ar-Rahm an fit he
M ost Gracious)?, w hich is indicative o f the vastness o f H is grace
and mercy, the all-encom passing nature o f His generosity, and the
abundance o f His kindness and bounty.
Then Allah m entions that w hich is indicative o f His m ercy and its
im pact that A llah causes to reach His slaves, such as blessings both
spiritual and worldly. A fter m entioning all kinds o f blessings, Allah
rem inds two prom inent groups (nam ely hum ankind and the jinn) to
give thanks to Him, by saying: ^T hen w hich o f the favours o f your
Lord will you deny?)?
A llah tells us that He sfhas taught the Q u r’an)? that is, He has
taught His slaves its w ords and m eanings, and has explained it to
them. This is the greatest blessing and m ercy that He has bestow ed
upon His slaves, as He sent dow n to them an A rabic Q u r’an with the
best w ords and best m eanings, w hich contains all that is good and
deters against all that is evil.
^H e created man)? in the best shape, w ith a perfect, well-designed
body and faculties. The C reator perfected the creation o f m an and

54 T he spathe is a sheath that e n c lo s e s the im m ature flo w ers o f the date


p alm , until th ey have d e v e lo p e d further, w h ereu p on the spathe sp lits
open, ex p o sin g the flow er clusters for the purpose o f p ollination.
55 The verb appears in the dual form in the original Arabic; this question is
addressed to both hum ankind and the jinn.

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m ade him distinct from all other living beings by teaching him
^sp eech ^, w hich is the ability to express w hat is on his mind. This
includes both verbal speech and writing. Speech, by m eans o f which
Allah made humans distinct from other creatures, is one o f the greatest
blessings that He has bestow ed upon humanity.
^T he sun and the m oon follow their calculated courses^ that is,
A llah created the sun and the moon and m ade them to be o f service,
running according to their calculated courses, out o f m ercy and care
for H is slaves, and in order to serve their interests thereby, and so
that people m ay know how to count the years and m easure tim e
(10:5).
tfand the stars and trees prostrate [to Allah] p that is, the stars in
the heaven and the trees on earth acknow ledge their Lord, prostrate
to Him, obey Him, hum ble them selves and subm it them selves so as
to be o f service to A llah ’s slaves and benefit them.
^H e raised the heaven^ and m ade it a firm am ent for the creatures
o f earth
^and enjoined ju stic e^ that is, A llah has enjoined justice in word and
deed am ong people. Hence He says:
^so that you should not transgress the limits o f justice)* that is, Allah
has enjoined justice so that you do not go beyond the limits o f justice,
for if it w ere up to your ow n reason and opinions, there w ould be
troubles such as only A llah knows, and heavens and the earth w ould
be corrupted.
^T herefore establish w eights and m easures with ju stic e^ that is,
m ake them based on justice as m uch as you can
^an d do not give short m easu re^ and do not be unjust, for giving
short m easure is unfair, unjust and a transgression.
^ H e ^ nam ely A llah ^has spread out the earth]J, as it has the
attribute o f being solid and stable, and it has various attributes from
one place to another

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dfor all creatures)?, forem ost am ong w hom are hum ans, so that they
m ay settle on it, as it is sm ooth and plain; hence they w ill be able
to build on it, till the soil, sow seeds and dig in it; travel through its
roadw ays and m ountain passes; and benefit from its m inerals and all
that is in it o f things that they need.
Then Allah m entions w hat it contains o f essential nourishm ent: ^in
w hich there are fruits)? - this refers to all types o f trees that bear
fruits that people enjoy, such as grapes, figs, pom egranates, apples,
and so on.
dand date palm s with spathes)? that is, w ith spathes that split open to
reveal the immature flowers, that em erge gradually until they develop
into fruit that becom es a staple food that is eaten and stored, and used
as provision by people w hen they stay at hom e and w hen they travel,
delicious fruit that is one o f the best o f fruits.
t(and grains w ith leafy stems)?; the hay and straw are used to feed
livestock and for other purposes. That includes grains o f wheat, barley,
com , rice, m illet and so on.
fjand fragrant p lan ts^ it m ay be that w hat is m eant is all kinds o f
leaves (herbs) that are eaten by hum ans, so it is follow ing som ething
specific w ith som ething general, and A llah is rem inding His slaves
o f nutrition and provision in both general and specific terms.
O r it m ay be that w hat is m eant by the w ord translated here as
^fragrant plants)? is basil in particular, and A llah is rem inding His
slaves o f w hat H e has m ade available in the earth o f all kinds o f
w holesom e and fragrant plants that have a pleasant sm ell and bring
jo y and delight to people.
H aving m entioned m any o f His blessings that m ay be seen and
appreciated, and because this soorah is addressed to the two prom inent
groups, nam ely hum ankind and the jinn, asking them to affirm the
blessings o f Allah (de), He says here: ^T hen w hich o f the favours o f
your Lord will you deny?p That is, which o f the spiritual and w orldly
blessings o f Allah will you deny?

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How beautiful was the response o f the jinn when the Prophet (*|§)
recited this soorah: w henever he cam e to these words, ^T hen which
o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?p, they said: We deny none
o f Your blessings, our Lord; to You be praise. This is w hat one should
say w hen the blessings and favours o f A llah are recounted to him;
he should affirm them , and give thanks to Allah and praise Him for
them.

0 0

55:14. He created man from dry clay like pottery


55:15. and He created the jinn from smokeless fire.
55:16. Then which o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?

This is one o f the blessings that Allah bestow ed upon His slaves,
showing them signs o f His might and beautiful creation. ^H e created
the father o f hum anity, nam ely A dam ( ^ ) , «ffrom dry clay like
pottery^ that is, from clay that m ade a sound like that o f pottery that
is fired in the kiln.
^and He created the jin n jj that is, the father o f the jinn, nam ely
the accursed Iblees
((from sm okeless firep that is, from a pure flam e o f fire, or from that
which is m ixed w ith smoke.
This is indicative o f the noble nature o f the essence o f the hum an
being who is created from clay and dust, which has the characteristics
o f dignity, solid character and benefits, in contrast to the essence o f
the jin n , nam ely fire, w hich has the characteristics o f im m aturity,
foolishness, evil and m ischief.

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Having described the creation o f the two prom inent groups and the
substance o f each, w hich is a blessing from H im to His slaves, A llah
then says: tfThen which o f the favours o f your Lord w ill you deny?)?

0 o

55:17. [He is] Lord o f the two places o f sunrise and Lord o f the two
places o f sunset.
55:18. Then which o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?

That is, He is the Lord o f everything on w hich the sun, m oon and
stars rise and set, for they are under His control and care. He m entions
these places in the dual form here so as to reflect the general m eaning,
the two places w here the sun rises in the w inter and the sum m er, and
the tw o places w here it sets at those tw o times.

0 0

(rr-u

55:19. He has let loose the two bodies o f flowing water; they meet
55:20. but between them is a barrier; they do not encroach [upon one
another].
55:21. Then which o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?
55:22. Out o f both o f them come pearls and coral.
55:23. Then which o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?

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W hat is m eant by the tw o bodies o f flow ing w ater is fresh w ater


and salty water. They both m eet, then the fresh w ater flows into the
salty w ater and they m ix, but A llah (fsf) has created a barrier o f earth
betw een them , so that the one will not encroach upon the other, and
so that benefit m ay be derived from each. Fresh w ater is used for
drinking and irrigating trees and crops, and the salty w ater keeps the
air fresh and provides w hales and fish, pearls and corals, and it is
stable and o f service to ships and boats. Hence Allah says:

(To-Tt jjl

55:24. To Him belong the lofty ships, sailing on the sea like mountains.
55:25. Then which o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?

That is, A llah has m ade the ships that sail on the sea and travel
through it by His leave, and that are built by hum ans and m ay be huge
like m ountains, to be o f service to His slaves. Hence people em bark
on them and their luggage and trade goods are carried on them. They
are protected by the Protector o f the heavens and the earth, and this
is one o f the great blessings o f Allah. Hence He says: ^T hen which
o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?^

0 0

55:26. All that is on earth will perish,

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55:27. but the essence o f your Lord will abide forever, in all its majesty
and munificence.
55:28. Then which o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?

That is, all those on the face o f the earth - hum ans, jin n , anim als
and all creatures - will perish, die and disappear, and there will remain
the Ever-Living W ho never dies, «{but the essence o f your Lord will
abide forever, in all its m ajesty and m unificence^ that is, in all its
greatness, m ight and glory, for w hich He is venerated and honoured.
M unificence refers to im m ense bounty and generosity, because o f
w hich He honours His close friends, the elite o f His creation, in all
ways. He is the One W hose close friends honour Him, respect Him,
venerate Him, love Him, turn to Him and w orship Him. ^T hen which
o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?^

O 0

( r .- T t iJr,)

55:29. All those who are in the heavens and on earth ask o f Him; every
day He has matters to bring about .56
55:30. Then which o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?

That is, He is the Self-Sufficient W ho has no need o f any o f His


creation, and He is the M ost G enerous and kind. All creatures are in
need o f Him, asking o f Him all that they need, either im plicitly or

56 That is, every day He enriches some and makes others poor, raises and
lowers people in status, gives life and causes death, forgives some and
punishes others, and so on, and He answers the prayers o f those who ask
of Him.

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explicitly; they cannot do w ithout Him for even the blinking o f an


eye or even less than that.
^every d ay ^ Allah (M ) ^has m atters to bring about^, enriching
poor persons, consoling broken-hearted people, giving to some people
and withholding from others, causing death and giving life, and raising
and low ering people in status. He is not distracted by one thing from
another, and does not m ake m istakes when dealing with m any issues.
He never w earies o f the persistent supplication or ongoing requests
o f those who call upon Him.
G lory be to the M ost G enerous, the B estow er W hose gifts and
blessings reach all the inhabitants o f the earth and the heavens. His
kindness encom passes all o f creation at all times. Exalted be the One
W ho is not prevented from giving by the disobedience o f the sinners,
or the attitude o f those who deny their need for Him and are ignorant
o f Him and His generosity.
T he m atters referred to w hen A llah (4c) says that every day
He has m atters to bring about are His decrees and controls that He
w illed and ordained from eternity. He is still bringing them about
at the ordained tim e as dictated by His w isdom . This includes the
religious decrees o f com m and and prohibition, and the universal
decrees that apply to His slaves for the duration o f their tim e in this
earthly realm , then when this w orld ends and Allah causes them to
die, and it is His will to requite them and show them o f His justice,
grace and abundant kindness, through w hich they will com e to know
H im and realise that He is O ne, and He w ill m ove those w ho are
accountable from the realm o f tests and trials to the realm o f eternal
life.
At that tim e He will attend to the im plem entation o f these rulings
whose tim e has now come. This is w hat is referred to in the following
verses:

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0 0
-n

55:31. We will attend to you, 0 you two prominent groups [humans


and jinn].
55:32. Then which o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?

That is, We shall attend to your reckoning and requite you for the
deeds that you did in the previous world.

0 0

55:33. O jinn and humans, if you are able to pass beyond the confines
o f the heavens and the earth, then do so. But you cannot pass
beyond them unless you have power.
55:34. Then which o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?

That is, when A llah gathers them on the Day o f Resurrection, He


will tell them o f their helplessness and w eakness, and o f the perfect
nature o f His pow er and how His will is alw ays done. Then He will
say, highlighting their helplessness:
«[0 jin n and hum ans, if you are able to pass beyond the confines o f
the heavens and the earthjj that is, if you can find a way by m eans o f
which you can pass beyond the dom inion and pow er o f Allah,
«{then do so. B ut you cannot pass beyond them unless you have
pow erjj. You can never pass beyond them unless you have pow er

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and might, but how could they have that w hen they have no pow er to
benefit or harm them selves, or to cause death, give life or resurrect?
In that place o f standing, no one will speak except by A llah’s leave,
and nothing will be heard except whispers. In that place o f standing,
kings and slaves, leaders and follow ers, rich and poor, w ill all
be equal.

0 0

55:35. There will be sent against you flames o f fire and smoke, and
you will not be able to protect yourselves.
55:36. Then which o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?

Then Allah m entions w hat He has prepared in that great place o f


standing:
ffThere will be sent against you flames o f fire and smoke, and you will
not be able to protect yourselves. Then which o f the favours o f your
Lord will you deny?)9 that is, He will send against you pure flam es o f
fire «fand sm oke^. W hat is m eant is that these two frightening things
will be sent against you, O jinn and humans, and they will encom pass
you, then you will not be able to protect yourselves and no one will
protect you against Allah.
Because His alarming His slaves is a blessing to them and a motive
that should push them towards the most sublim e aim s, Allah rem inds
them o f His blessings, saying: ^T hen w hich o f the favours o f your
Lord will you deny?^

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0 0

55:37. When the heaven is rent asunder and becomes rosy red, [melting]
like grease.
55:38. Then which o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?
55:39. On that day no human or jinn will be questioned about his sin.
55:40. Then which o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?

^ W h e n the heaven is rent asunder]? th at is, on th e D ay o f


R esurrection, because o f severe dread, w idespread confusion and
the succession o f terrifying events. The sun and m oon will be eclipsed
and the stars will be scattered.
B ecause o f the intensity o f fear and distress, the heaven w ill
becom e ^ ro sy red, [m elting] like grease]? or m olten lead and the
like.
^T hen which o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny? On that
day no hum an or jin n will be questioned about his sin^ that is, they
will not be questioned to find out w hat happened, because A llah (^s)
is the K now er o f the unseen and the seen, the past and the future,
and He wants to requite His slaves on the basis o f w hat He knows
o f their deeds.
Both good and evil people w ill be given m arks on the D ay o f
Resurrection by which they will be known, as A llah says elsew here:
«[On the day when som e faces will becom e bright, and some faces
will becom e d ark ... b (Al ‘Imran 3:106)

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55:41. The wicked will be known by their marks, and will be seized
by their forelocks and their feet.
55:42. Then which o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?

^T he w icked w ill be known by their m arks, and w ill be seized by


their forelocks and their feet^ that is, the w icked will be seized by
their forelocks and feet and be throw n into hell and dragged into it.
Allah (-te) will only question them by way o f rebuke and in order to
m ake them confess w hat they did; He knows better than them , but
His aim will be to dem onstrate to all creatures His ultim ate p ro o f
and great wisdom .

55:43. [It will be said to them:] This is hell which the wicked used to
deny.
55:44. They will go to and fro between it and fiercely scalding water.
55:45. Then which o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?

T hat is, it w ill be said to those w ho disbelieved in the divine


prom ise and w arning, w hen the blaze o f hell intensifies: «(This is
hell which the wicked used to denyjs, so congratulations to them for
their rejection o f it, and let them taste its torm ent, suffering, flam es
and fetters, for this is the requital o f their denial.

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^T hey will go to and fro betw een it^ with its various levels and
flam es
^ an d fiercely scalding w ater^ that is, intensely hot water, that has
reached the ultim ate in term s o f heat. ^T hen w hich o f the favours o f
your Lord will you deny?))
H aving m entioned w hat will happen to the w icked, A llah now
m entions the rew ard o f the righteous w ho feared Him:

O 0

55:46. For him who fears standing before his Lord there will be two
gardens -
55:47. Then which o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?
55:48. - shaded by spreading branches.
55:49. Then which o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?

That is, for the one who feared his Lord and the standing before
H im , so he refrained from w hat A llah forbade and did w hat He
enjoined, there will be tw o gardens o f w hich the vessels, jew ellery,
buildings and all that they contain will be m ade o f gold. One o f the
tw o gardens will be a rew ard for refraining from forbidden things,
and the other will be a rew ard for doing acts o f obedience.
One o f the characteristics o f these tw o gardens is that they will be
^shaded by spreading branches^ and will contain various types o f
jo y and blessings, both visible and hidden, such as no eye has seen,
no ear has heard, nor has it ever crossed the m ind o f man. In them
there will be m any beautiful trees, with fine branches on w hich there
will be an abundance o f delicious, ripe fruit, or they will contain all
types and kinds o f pleasures and delights.

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o o

55:50. In them are two flowing springs.


55:51. Then which o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?
55:52. In them are two kinds o f every fruit.
55:53. Then which o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?

In those two gardens there will be ^tw o flow ing springs^ that the
people will be able to cause to flow how ever they wish.
*fln them are two kinds o f ever)' fruity - o f all kinds o f fruit, two
kinds, each with its own taste and colour that the other does not have.

55:54. They will recline on carpets lined with brocade, with the fruits
o f the two gardens within easy reach.
55:55. Then which o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?

^ T h e y w ill reclin e on carp ets lined w ith b ro c a d e ^ this is a


description o f the carpets o f the people o f paradise, and how they
w ill sit on them : they w ill recline on them , m ean in g th at they
w ill sit in a com fortable and relaxed m anner, like kings on their
thrones.
N o one know s the description and beauty o f those carpets except
Allah (4g); even their linings that touch the ground directly will be

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m ade o f brocade, w hich is the m ost beautiful and finest kind o f silk,
so how about the tops o f those carpets that will be in contact with
p eo p le’s skin?
^w ith the fruits o f the two gardens within easy reach p. The word
translated here as fruits}) refers to fruit that is ripe. In other words,
the fruits o f those two gardens will be at hand, easily picked by one
who is standing, sitting or lying down.

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(OS-ST \ j r -jJI

55:56. In [those gardens] will be chaste wom en who restrain their


glances ,57 untouched before by any man or jinn -
55:57. Then which o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?
55:58. - As though they were rubies and pearls -
55:59. Then which o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?

^ In [those gardens] w ill be chaste w om en w ho restrain their


glances}) that is, they w ill look only at their husbands, because o f
their handsom eness and beauty, and because o f their perfect love
for them , and their husbands will look only at them , because o f their
beauty and the jo y o f being with them.
^untouched before by any m an or jinn}) that is, no one, hum an or
jinn, will have touched them before them ; rather they will be virgins,
loving and attentive towards their husbands, and very beautiful. Hence

57 T hey are the hoor a l-‘een , w h o w ill be content w ith their husbands and
w ill not look at other men.

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Allah says: ^A s though they were rubies and pearls)?, because o f their
purity, beauty and glam orous appearance.

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55:60. Is the reward o f goodness anything but goodness?
55:61. Then which o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?

That is, is the rew ard o f the one who does w ell in w orshipping
the C reator and show ing kindness to His slaves anything other than
that he will be treated w ell, rewarded greatly and granted the ultim ate
triumph, eternal blessing and a life o f ease? These two sublime gardens
are for those who are close to Allah.

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55:62. And besides these two there will be two other gardens -
55:63. Then which o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?
55:64. - Both o f deepest green.
55:65. Then which o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?

^A nd besides these two there will be two other gardens)? o f which


the structures, vessels, jew ellery and all that they contain will be made
o f silver. They will be for those on the right.

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Those two gardens will be ^ o f deepest green^, because they will


be well irrigated.

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55:66. In them are two gushing springs.


55:67. Then which o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?
55:68. In them are fruits, date palms, and pomegranates
55:69. Then which o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?

«fln them are tw o gushing sp rin g s... In them are fru its^ o f all
types, the best o f which are dates and pom egranates, in w hich there
are many benefits.

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55:70. In them are good and beautiful women -


55:71. Then which o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?
55:72. - fair ones, secluded in pavilions -
55:73. Then which o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?
55:74. - untouched before by any man or jinn.
55:75. Then which o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?

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^In them)) that is, in all the gardens


^are good and beautiful women}) that is, they are good in attitude and
beautiful in appearance. Thus they com bine inner and outer beauty,
beauty o f physical form and o f character.
affair ones, secluded in pavilions}) that is, they stay in pavilions
o f pearls, where they have prepared them selves for their husbands.
That does not mean that they do not go out and about in the gardens
o f paradise, as is the custom am ong the daughters o f kings and the
like who dwell in seclusion.

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55:76. [The people o f those gardens will be] reclining on green cushions
and exquisite carpets.
55:77. Then which o f the favours o f your Lord will you deny?
55:78. Blessed be the name o f your Lord, the Lord o f majesty and
munificence.

*([The people o f those gardens will be] reclining on green cushions})


that is, the people o f those tw o gardens will be reclining on green
cushions that are placed on lofty seats
*[and exquisite carpets}) - the word translated here as efcarpet^ refers
to a carpet that is w oven in a very elegant, skilful and beautiful
manner. Hence Allah describes it as exquisite, because it is so well
m ade, beautiful and soft to the touch.
These two gardens are o f a lesser quality than the first two gardens
(m entioned in verse 62), as Allah ascribes to the first tw o gardens
a num ber o f characteristics that He does not ascribe to the second

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two. He says concerning the first two: ^ln them are two flow ing
springs)? (55: 50), and He says concerning the second two: ^In them
are two gushing springs)? (55: 66). The difference between flowing
and gushing is obvious.
He says concerning the first tw o gardens: ^shaded by spreading
branches)* (55 : 48), but He does not say that w ith regard to the second
two.
He says concerning the first tw o gardens: ?fln them are tw o kinds
o f every fruit)* (55 : 52), but he says concerning the second two: ?fln
them are fruits, date palm s, and pom egranates)? (55 : 68). It is clear
that there is a difference betw een the two descriptions.
He says concerning the first two gardens: ^T hey will recline on
carpets lined with brocade, with the fruits o f the two gardens within
easy reach)* ( 55: 54), but He does not say that concerning the second
two; rather He says: [The people o f those gardens w ill be] reclining
on green cushions and exquisite carpets)? (55: 76).
He says concerning the first two gardens, describing their wives
and spouses: ^In [those gardens] will be chaste w om en who restrain
their glances, untouched before by any man or jin n ^ (55: 56), and He
says concerning the second two: ^ fair ones, secluded in pavilions)?
(55: 72).
He says concerning the first tw o gardens: ^ Is the rew ard o f
goodness anything but goodness?)? (55: 60), which indicates that the
first two gardens are the rew ard for the forem ost doers o f good, and
He does not say that concerning the second two gardens.
The m ere fact that the first two gardens are m entioned before the
second two indicates that they are superior.
From the points m entioned above we m ay conclude that the first
two gardens are superior to the second two, and that they are prepared
for those who are close to Allah, nam ely the Prophets, the strong and

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true in faith, and the elite am ong the righteous slaves o f Allah, and
that the second tw o are prepared for the ordinary believers.
In all o f the gardens m entioned there is that which no eye has seen,
no ear has heard, nor has it ever crossed the m ind o f man. In them is
all that people could desire and that could delight the eye. The people
w ill enjoy the utm ost com fort, contentm ent and ease, living in the
best o f abodes, to such an extent that no one will think that anyone
else is better o ff than him or is enjoying m ore sublim e bliss than that
w hich he is enjoying.
Having m entioned the vastness o f His grace and kindness, Allah
says: ^B lessed be the nam e o f your Lord, the Lord o f m ajesty and
m unificence^ that is, how great are the blessings and how abundant
the kindness o f the One to W hom belong splendid majesty, perfect
glory and m unificence tow ards His close friends.

T his is the end o f the com m entary on Soorat ar-Rahman.


All praise and thanks are for A llah, and m ay the b lessin gs and
peace o f A llah be upon Prophet M uhamm ad his fam ily, and
his C om panions abundantly until the D ay o f Judgem ent.

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56.

Soorat al-Waqi'ah
(M akki)

In the name o f Allah,


the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful

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56:1. When the inevitable comes to pass,


56:2. no one will deny it;
56:3. it will bring some low and raise others up.
56:4. When the earth is shaken violently,
56:5. and the mountains crumble
56:6. and turn to scattered dust,
56:7. and you are sorted into three kinds,
56:8. then [there will be] those on the right - how blessed will be
those on the right!

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56:9. And [there will be] those on the left - how wretched will be
those on the left!
56:10. And the foremost are the foremost ;58
56:11. It is they who will be brought near to Allah,
56:12. in gardens o f delight,
56:13. a multitude o f those o f old
56:14. and a few from those o f later times.

Here Allah tells us about the inevitable event that will definitely
com e to pass. It is the resurrection, w hich *(no one will deny)* that
is, there is no doubt about it, because there is rational and textual
evidence for it, and divine w isdom dictates it.
^ it will bring som e low and raise others u p ^ that is, it will bring
som e people to the low est o f the low, and raise others to the m ost
sublim e o f degrees.
^W hen the earth is shaken violently]* that is, when it m oves and
is thrown into turmoil.
*]and the m ountains crum ble and turn to scattered dust)*, and the
earth is left with no m ountains or landm arks -
*(And He will leave the earth as a smooth, levelled plain, in which
you will see no depression or elevation.)* (Ta Ha 20: 106-107)
tfand y o u ^ O people ^are sorted into three kinds^ that is, you will
be divided into three categories, according to your deeds, good and
bad. Then A llah explains further about the situation o f those three
categories:

58 The foremost are those who went ahead - in faith and righteous deeds - of
their righteous brethren who are described above as “those on the right”.
The reason why they are described by repetition of the word sabiqoon
(translated here as ^foremost)*) is that they have attained such a high status
that they cannot be described in any other terms. (Tafseer Ibn ‘Ashoor)

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^then [there will be] those on the right - how blessed will be those
on the right^ - this is indicative o f their high status and favourable
situation.
<(And [there will be] those on the left - how wretched will be those
on the left^ - this is indicative o f the terrible state they will be in.
<[And the forem ost are the forem ost; it is they who will be brought
near to Allah]) that is, the forem ost to do good in this w orld will be
the first to enter paradise in the hereafter.
Those who are like this will be close to Allah in gardens o f delight,
in the m ost sublime status, in lofty dwellings with no dwellings above
them.
Those who are m entioned here will be ^ a m ultitude o f those o f
old ^ that is, m any from the earlier generations o f this Um m ah and
other nations
*fand a few from those o f later tim e s^ . T his is indicative o f the
superiority o f the early generations o f this U m m ah over its later
generations, in general term s, because the num bers o f those w ho
w ere close to Allah are greater am ong the earlier generations than
am ong the later generations.

( ^ — \ o ; 4_*_S Ij j l Oj )

56:15. [They will be seated] on well-crafted couches,


56:16. reclining on them, facing one another.

Those who are close to Allah are the elite am ong hum ankind. They
will be seated ^o n w ell-crafted couches]) that is, couches that are
inlaid with gold and silver, pearls and jew els, and other adornm ents
that no one knows except Allah (-Jg).

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^reclining on them)? that is, on those couches, sitting at ease and


com fortably, steady and firm.
^ fa cin g one another)? because o f their purity o f heart and good
m anners, and the harm ony am ong them.

56:17. Immortal [servant] boys will circulate among them


56:18. with cups and jugs, and glasses filled from a flowing spring [of
wine],
56:19. which will not cause any headache or intoxication,
56:20. along with fruits o f their choice
56:21. and meat o f birds that they may desire.

That is, there will circulate am ong the people o f paradise, serving
them and m eeting their needs, young boys w ho are exceedingly
handsom e and elegant.
.. .as if they are pearls carefully guarded.)? (at-Toor 52: 24)
- that is, concealed and not exposed to anything that could change
them.
They are created to live forever, never grow ing older or changing.
They will circulate am ong them with vessels o f drink,
^w ith cups^ - the w ord translated here as ^cups)? refers to a vessel
that has no handle
^and jugs)? - the w ord translated here as 4 iug s ^ refers to a vessel
that does have a handle.

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«fand glasses filled from a flow ing spring [o f w ine]^ that is, o f
delicious w ine that w ill not cause any side effects to the one w ho
drinks it.
^w hich will not cause any headache)* or cause their heads to hurt,
as the w ine o f this w orld does to the one who drinks it
«(or intoxication^ that is, they will not lose their m inds or pow er o f
rational thinking, as happens in the case o f earthly wine.
The point is that everything in paradise o f delights that have earthly
counterparts will have no negative side effects at all, as Allah says
elsewhere:
<f.. .in which there are rivers o f w ater forever fresh; rivers o f milk o f
which the taste never changes; rivers o f w ine, delightful to those w ho
drink it; and rivers o f honey, pure and clea r... )* (Muhammad 47:15)
Here A llah m entions the w ine o f paradise and states that it has
none o f the negative side effects that are found in this world.
«falong with fruits o f their choice)* that is, w hatever they choose
and find appealing, and w hatever their souls desire, o f all kinds o f
delicious fruits, they will acquire it in the m ost perfect manner.
^and m eat o f birds that they m ay desire)* that is, o f every type o f
birds, and any type o f meat they want, grilled or cooked in other ways.

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(Y£- YT

56:22. And [there will be] fair companions with big beautiful eyes,
56:23. as if they are pearls carefully guarded,
56:24. as a reward for what they used to do.

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That is, they will have fair com panions with big beautiful eyes
(h o o ra l- ‘een). The word hoor refers to a beautiful wom an whose eyes
are lined with kohl, and the word ‘een refers to huge and beautiful
eyes. Beautiful eyes in the female is one o f the greatest characteristics
o f beauty.
^ a s if they are pearls carefully guarded)? that is, as if they are
pure, elegant w hite pearls, concealed from people’s gaze and from
the wind and sun, the colour o f which is one o f the m ost beautiful o f
colours, and in which there is no defect at all. This is how the hoor
al-‘een are; they have no defects at all and in fact they are perfect in
their attributes and beautiful in their description.
No m atter how you look at them , you will not find anything but
what is pleasing to the onlooker.
That bliss which is prepared for them is «fa reward for w hat they
used to d o ^. Just as their deeds w ere good, A llah has m ade their
reward good and He will grant them trium ph and bliss.

56:25. They will not hear therein any vain talk or sinful speech,
56:26. but only the salutation: Peace, peace.

That is, in the gardens o f delight, they will not hear any idle talk.
In that place there will be nothing that is o f no benefit and no words
that are sinful.
^but only the salutation: Peace, peace)* that is, they will only hear
good words, for that is the abode o f the good and there will be nothing
in it but everything that is good.
This is indicative o f the good m anners o f the people o f paradise
when they address one another, and that it will be the best and m ost

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pleasing o f speech, that is m ost free o f idle and sinful talk. We ask
A llah for His grace.

56:27. Those on the right - how blessed will be those on the right!
56:28. [They will be] amidst thornless lote-trees,
56:29. and banana trees laden with fruit,
56:30. and shade long-extended,
56:31. and flowing water,
56:32. and fruit in abundance,
56:33. never ceasing and never restricted,
56:34. and raised couches [reclining thereon with their spouses ].59

Then A llah speaks o f the bliss o f those on the right: ^T hose on


the right - how blessed will be those on the right)? that is, how great
their status and how high their standing.
^[T hey will be] am idst thornless lote-trees)? that is, all thorns and
harmful branches will have been rem oved from them , and replaced
w ith good fruits.
One o f the qualities o f the lote-tree is that it gives cool shade and
offers comfort.

59 See (Yd Seen 36: 55-56):


tfVerily, the inhabitants o f paradise will, on that day, be busy in their
rejoicing, they and their spouses reclining on couches in the shade.)?

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«(and banana trees laden w ith fruit)*. T he banana tree is well


known; it is a tree that produces delicious fruits.
^and flowing water)* that is, abundant water, com ing from springs,
m eandering rivers and gushing water.
^and fruit in abundance, never ceasing and never restricted^ that
is, it is not like the fruits o f this w orld, w hich cease from tim e to time
and may be restricted (that is, difficult to acquire) for those w ho want
them. R ather the fruits o f paradise will be constantly available and
close at hand, so that a person m ay easily take them , w hether he is
standing, sitting or lying down.
s[and raised couches)* that is, raised up o ff the ground. These
couches will be m ade o f silk, gold, pearls and such things as no one
knows except Allah.

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56:35. We shall indeed have created them [their spouses] anew and
perfect,
56:36. and shall have made them virgins,
56:37. loving and o f equal age,
56:38. for those on the right,
56:39. a multitude o f those o f old
56:40. and a multitude from those o f later times.

^W e shall indeed have created them [their spouses] anew and


perfect)* that is, We shall have created the w ives o f the people o f
paradise in a form other than their earthly form, perfect and not subject
to death.

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^and shall have m ade them virgins^ that is, both young and old.
This general wording includes both the hoor al-‘een and the women
w ho lived in this world. This description - o f being virgins - will
be constant, and that will be their state at all tim es, ju st as they will
rem ain gloving and o f equal age)* at all times.
The w ord translated here as gloving)* refers to the w om an who
is affectionate and tries to endear h erself to her husband with nice
w ords, beautiful appearance, soft talk, beauty and love. W hen she
speaks, she enchants the listener, w ho w ishes that her w ords w ould
never end, especially w hen she sings pleasant tunes in a delightful
voice. And when her husband looks at her good m anners and gentle
characteristics, his heart is filled w ith jo y and happiness; when she
moves from one place to another, that place is filled with her beautiful
fragrance and light.
That includes coquettish behaviour when engaging in intercourse.
^ o f equal age)* - the age in question is thirty-three w hich is the
prim e age, the end o f youth. Their w ives will be loving and o f equal
age, living in harm ony and getting along with one another, content
and pleasing to others, not grieving nor causing grief; rather they will
bring jo y to the heart and be a delight to the eyes.
*|for those on the right)* that is, they are prepared for them.
*fa m ultitude o f those o f old and a m ultitude from those o f later
times)* that is, this category o f those on the right w ill be a large
num ber from the earlier generations and a large num ber from the
later generations.

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iS & ff
56:41. And those on the left - how wretched will be those on the left!
56:42. [They will be] in the midst o f scorching wind and scalding water,
56:43. in the shade o f black smoke,
56:44. neither cool nor wholesome.
56:45. Verily before that they lived a life o f luxury
56:46. and persisted in the gravest sin.
56:47. They used to say: What! When we have died and have turned
into dust and bones, will we really be raised up
56:48. and our forefathers, too?

W hat is m eant by those on the left are the inhabitants o f the fire,
the people o f bad deeds.
Allah describes their punishm ent they deserve, and tells us that
they will be *(in the midst o f scorching w ind^, which is a hellishly hot
wind that will take their souls and make them extrem ely distressed,
^and scalding w aterjj that is, hot w ater that will cut their bowels.
€{in the shade o f black sm oked that is, flam es m ixed with smoke,
^neither cool nor w holesom e^.
W hat is m eant is that there w ill be distress, anguish, g rie f and
suffering in w hich there is nothing good, because negation o f a thing
is an affirm ation o f its opposite.
Then Allah mentions their deeds that brought them to this requital:
^V erily before that they lived a life o f lu xury^ that is, they w ere
distracted by their w orldly life; they strove for it, enjoyed it and
revelled in it, so their hope for a long life kept them from doing good
deeds. This life o f luxury is what A llah condem ns them for.
([and persisted in the gravest sin^ that is, they used to com m it
m ajor sins and not repent from them or regret them ; rather they

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persisted in that w hich angered their Lord, then they cam e to Him
with m any burdens o f unforgiven sins.
And they used to deny the resurrection, so they would say, thinking
it unlikely: ^W hat! W hen w e have died and have turned into dust
and bones, will we really be raised up and our forefathers, too?)*
That is, how can we be resurrected after we have died and our bodies
have disintegrated, and we have turned into dust and bones? This is
impossible! ^w ill we really be raised up and our forefathers, too?^
A llah said, in response to them and refuting them:

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56:49. Say [O Muhammad]: Verily, those o f old and those o f later times
56:50. will be gathered on a predetermined day.

T hat is, say (O M uham m ad [ # ! ] ) : A llah w ill resu rrect all o f


hum ankind, both the earlier and later generations, and He will gather
them on a predeterm ined day, that Allah has decreed for His slaves,
after all creatures die. It is A llah’s will to requite them for their deeds
that they did in the realm o f accountability.

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(<n-o\

56:51. Then you, O misguided deniers,

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56:52. will surely eat from the tree o f Zaqqoom,


56:53. filling your bellies with it,
56:54. and drinking scalding water on top o f it,
56:55. drinking like thirsty camels.
56:56. This will be their welcome on the Day o f Judgement.

^T h en you, O m isguided deniers)? w ho have gone astray from


the path o f guidance and follow ed the path o f m isguidance, and
have denied the M essenger ( j | | ) and w hat he brought o f truth and
o f prom ises and w arnings,
^w ill surely eat from the tree o f Z aqqoom ^ w hich is the ugliest and
vilest o f trees, with the foulest stench and the most hideous appearance
^filling your bellies with it)?.
W hat will force them to eat from it - despite it being so repugnant
- is extrem e hunger that will bum in their bellies, as a result o f which
they will alm ost die.
This food, which is all that they will have to ward o ff their hunger,
is food that does not provide any nourishm ent or assuage hunger.
As for their drink, it will be the w orst o f drink; on top o f that food,
they will drink scalding w ater that will boil in their bellies. They will
drink it like thirsty cam els that are suffering the m ost intense thirst,
or are sick, afflicted w ith a disease that causes thirst that is never
quenched by drinking water.
dThisi? food and drink
^w ill be their welcom e on the Day o f Judgement)? it is the welcom e
that they have sent ahead for them selves and given it precedence over
that with which Allah will welcom e His close friends.
Then A llah m entions rational p roof for the resurrection:

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(OV :U J

56:57. It is We Who created you; why then do you not believe [that
We can raise you from the dead]?

That is, it is We Who brought you into being after you were nothing
worth m entioning, w ithout becom ing weary or tired in the process. Is
not the One W ho is able to do that also able to give life to the dead?
Indeed He is able to do all things. This is a rebuke to them for not
believing in the resurrection, w hen they are able to see that which is
greater and m ore significant than it.

o 0

56:58. Have you thought about the semen that you emit?
56:59. Is it you who create [a human being from] it, or are We the
Creator?
56:60. It is We who have ordained death among you ,60 and Our decree
cannot be escaped,
56:61. for We replace you with others like you ,61 then [after death,
on the Day o f Resurrection] We will recreate you in a manner
unknown to you.

60 W hat is m eant is that death is decreed for all, at different stages o f life;
som e die you n g and som e die in old age, each according to prior divine
decree.
61 A lthough death is decreed for all, people do not all die at the sam e time; =

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56:62. You are well aware o f the first creation; why then do you not
pay heed?

That is, have you thought about the beginning o f your creation,
from the sem en that you em it? A re you the creators o f that sem en
and w hat grow s from it? O r is A llah (4g) the C reator W ho creates in
you the desire, and the genders, m ale and female, and guides each o f
them to each other, and creates love, com passion and m ercy between
the spouses, w hich are the m eans o f procreation?
Therefore Allah (4g) points out that the first creation is evidence
for the second creation, and says: ^Y ou are well aw are o f the first
creation; why then do you not pay heed^ and realise that the One Who
is able to initiate your creation is also able to recreate you?

U il« > - 4 ! iijc » j j ) R y

Civ-ir :i*ji ny ny
56:63. Have you thought about the seeds you sow?
56:64. Is it you who cause them to grow, or is it We Who make them
grow?
56:65. If We so willed, We could cause them to crumble, then you
would be left wondering and lamenting:
56:66. We are ruined;
56:67. in fact we are destitute!

This is a rem inder o f His blessings to His slaves, calling them


thereby to believe in His oneness, worship Him and turn to Him, as
He has blessed them with that which He has made available to them o f

= rather as so m e die, n ew on es take their place. (ar-Razi)

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the seeds that they sow in order to grow crops and fruits. From those
seeds com e staple foods, provision and fruits, w hich are essential to
their needs and well-being. These are blessings that they cannot count,
let alone give sufficient thanks for them. Therefore He rem inds them
o f His blessings and asks them to affirm them.
^Is it you who cause them to grow, or is it We W ho m ake them
grow?)? That is, is it you w ho bring them forth as plants from the
ground? Is it you who cause them to grow ? Is it you who bring forth
the ears o f com and the fruits, and cause them to grow until they are
ripe and ready for harvest?
O r is it Allah W ho alone does all that and bestow s these blessings
upon you?
The m ost that you do is till and plough the soil and throw the
seed into it.
Then you have no know ledge o f w hat will happen after that, and
you have no ability to do m ore than that. M oreover, A llah points out
to them that the seed is exposed to danger, were it not for His keeping
it safe for them in order to m eet their needs and give them some jo y
for a limited time. Hence He says:
^ I f We so willed, We could cause them)? that is, the crops and fruits
^ to crumble)? that is, to shrivel and die, thus bringing no benefit and
no provision
^then you w ould be left)?, as a result o f its crum bling, after all the
effort you had put into it and all the m oney you had spent on it
^w ondering and lamenting)? that is, feeling regret and sorrow for
w hat had befallen you, w hich took aw ay your jo y and happiness,
and you w ould say:
«(We are ruined)? that is, we have suffered a setback and been
stricken by a calam ity that has destroyed us.
Then you w ould acknow ledge the extent o f the calam ity that had
befallen you, and you w ould say: ^in fact we are destitute^.

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So praise A llah for having preserved your crops for you,


caused them to survive and m ade them reach maturity, and for not
sending upon them a blight that w ould deprive you o f their benefit
and goodness.

56:68. Have you thought about the water that you drink?
56:69. Is it you who bring it down from the clouds, or is it We Who
send it down?
56:70. If We so willed, We could make it salty and bitter. Why then do
you not give thanks?

H aving m entioned the blessing o f food that He bestow s upon


His slaves, Allah (4g) now m entions the blessing o f w ater that He
bestow s upon them , from w hich they drink. W ere it not for A llah
m aking it easily available to them , they w ould have no w ay to
obtain it, for it is He W ho sends it dow n from the clouds. A llah
(4g) sends it dow n, and from it com e rivers that flow on the surface
o f the earth and underground, and produce gushing springs and
streams.
Part o f the blessing is that He m akes it fresh and palatable. If He
so willed, He could m ake it salty and bitter, unpleasant to drink and
o f no benefit.
^W hy then do you not give thanks}* to Allah (4s) for the blessings
that He has bestow ed upon you?

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56:71. Have you thought about the fire that you kindle?
56:72. Do you cause the tree [which provides the firewood] to grow,
or do We?
56:73. We have made it a reminder and a benefit for desert-dwellers
and wayfarers.
56:74. So glorify the name o f your Lord, the Most Great.

This is a blessing that is one o f the essentials that people cannot


do without. People need it for m any things. So Allah (4£) asks them
to affirm the blessing o f fire w hich He created from trees, for people
are not able to m ake the trees grow. R ather it is A llah (-fe) W ho
m akes the green trees grow, then the w ood is used for fire that is lit
according to people’s needs, then w hen they no longer need it, they
extinguish it.
«[We have m ade it a reminder)? to people, o f the blessings o f their
Lord, and a rem inder o f the fire o f hell, w hich Allah has prepared for
those who disobey Him, and He has m ade it a w arning to m otivate
people to aspire to paradise.
«fand a benefit for desert-dw ellers and wayfarers)?. A llah singles
out w ayfarers for m ention because they benefit from it m ore than
others. Perhaps the reason for that is that this w orld is all a place o f
travel; from the tim e a person is bom , he is travelling tow ards his
Lord. So Allah has m ade fire a benefit for w ayfarers and travellers
in this world, and a rem inder to them o f the hereafter.

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Having highlighted blessings that require people to praise Allah


for them , give thanks to Him and w orship Him, He instructs them to
glorify and praise Him:
«fSo glorify the nam e o f your Lord, the M ost Great)* that is, glorify
your Lord, the M ost G reat, W ho has the m ost perfect nam es and
attributes, and is im m ensely kind and generous.
Praise Him in your heart and w ith your w ords and actions, for
He is deserving o f that. He deserves to be thanked and not shown
ingratitude, to be rem em bered and not forgotten, to be obeyed and
not disobeyed.

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56:75. Verily I swear by the positions o f the stars,


56:76. and verily it is indeed a mighty oath, if you only knew,
56:77. that it is indeed a noble and bounteous Q ur’an,
56:78. in a book well-preserved,
56:79. which no one can touch except the purified,
56:80. a revelation from the Lord o f the worlds.
56:81. Do you then take this discourse [the Q ur’an] lightly,
56:82. and instead [of thanking Allah] for the provision He bestows,
you disbelieve and show ingratitude?

Here Allah (-is) swears by the stars and their positions - that is,
where they set - and w hat Allah brings about o f events at those tim es
that are indicative o f His m ight, pride and oneness.

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Then He shows how great is the m atter by w hich He sw ore this


oath, as He says: <|and verily it is indeed a m ighty oath, if you only
knew)?.
This oath is only m ighty because in the stars, and their m ovem ent
across the sky and their setting there are innum erable signs.
The fact that is attested by the oath is the authenticity o f the Q ur’an,
for it is undoubtedly true.
It is also noble - that is, it contains m uch good and abundant
know ledge, for all that is good and all know ledge is only learned and
derived from the B ook o f Allah.
«fin a book w ell-preserved^ that is, concealed from the eyes o f
people. This w ell-preserved book is al-Law h al-M ahfoodh. In other
words, this Q u r’an is w ritten in al-Law h al-M ahfoodh. held in high
esteem by A llah and by the angels am ong those on high.
It m ay be that w hat is m eant by the w ell-preserved book is the
book that is in the hands o f the angels w hom A llah sends dow n with
His revelation, and that w hat is m eant is that H e protected it from
the devils who had no pow er to change it, or to add anything to it or
take anything aw ay from it, or to eavesdrop on it.
«fwhich no one can touch except the purified)? that is, no one
can touch the Q u r’an except the noble angels w hom A llah (iSs) has
purified and m ade free o f faults and sins. I f no one touches it but the
purified, and the evil people and devils cannot touch it, this verse
indicates and implies that it is not perm issible for anyone to touch the
Q u r’an except one who is in a state o f purity, as is m entioned in the
hadith. Hence it was said that this verse is a statem ent that im plies a
prohibition. In other words, no one should touch the Q u r’an except
one w ho is in a state o f purity.
^ a revelation from the Lord o f the worlds)? that is, this Q u r’an
w hich is described in these sublim e term s is a revelation from the

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Lord o f the worlds, W ho takes care o f His slaves by bestow ing His
blessings, both spiritual and worldly.
One o f the m ost im portant aspects o f His caring for His slaves
is His revelation o f this Q u r’an which guides to that which is in the
best interests o f people in both realm s. Thus Allah bestow ed m ercy
thereby upon His slaves for which they cannot give sufficient thanks.
This requires them to adhere to it and proclaim it, and to call people
to it and convey it to them. Hence Allah says:
^D o you then take this discourse [the Q u r’an] lightly)? that is, do
you take this great Book and wise rem inder lightly? In other words,
do you com prom ise and try to m isinterpret it for fear o f people and
their criticism and sharp words?
T his is not b efittin g and is n o t ap p ro p riate; ra th e r w hat is
appropriate is to com prom ise and take lightly the words o f som eone
w hom you do not trust. As for the Holy Q u r’an, it is the truth which
no one opposes but he will be defeated, and no one prom otes it but
he will prevail over others. It is som ething concerning w hich there
should be no com prom ise and w hich should not be hidden; rather it
should be announced and proclaim ed to people.
^and instead [o f thanking Allah] for the provision He bestow s,
you disbelieve and show ingratitude?)? That is, in response to A llah ’s
blessing upon you o f bestow ing provision, do you disbelieve and
show ingratitude for the blessings o f A llah, and say: We got rain
by virtue o f such and such a star, and you attribute the blessing to a
source other than the One W ho bestow ed it and granted it to you?
W hy do you not give thanks to Allah for His blessings, as A llah sent
down the Q u r’an to you to increase you in grace and bounty, whereas
rejection and ingratitude lead to removal o f blessings and the affliction
o f punishm ent?

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56:83. Then why do you not [intervene], when the soul [of the dying
person] reaches the throat,
56:84. whilst you are looking on,
56:85. when We are nearer to him than you, but you do not see?
56:86. So why do you not, if [you think] you will not be requited,
56:87. bring back [that soul], if you are telling the truth?

That is, why do you not intervene, when the departing soul reaches
the throat, and you are looking at the dying person w hen he is in that
state?
In fact We are closer to him by O ur know ledge and O ur angels
are closer to him, but you do not see.
*[So why do you not, if [you think] you will not be requited)? that
is, w hy do you not - if you claim that you w ill not be resurrected
and will not be brought to account or requited - restore that soul to
its body, d if you are telling the truth)?? But you adm it that you are
unable to restore it to its place.
In that case, either you should accept the truth that has been brought
to you by M uham m ad («§§), or you should be stubborn and thus your
fate and bad end will be known.

<1 0

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56:88. Then if he is one o f [the foremost] who are brought near to


Allah,
56:89. [for him there will be] rest, fragrance and a garden o f bliss.
56:90. If he is one o f those on the right,
56:91. [It will be said to him]: Peace be upon you, for you are one o f
those on the right.
56:92. But if he is one o f the misguided deniers
56:93. then he will be welcomed with scalding water
56:94. and he will bum in hell.
56:95. Verily this is absolute truth.
56:96. So glorify the name o f your Lord, the Most Great.

At the beginning o f the soorah, Allah (4g) m entions the situation


o f three groups: the forem ost who are brought near to Allah, those
on the right, and the m isguided disbelievers, and how they w ill be
in the hereafter.
Here at the end o f the soorah, He describes how they will be at
the time o f death:
«(Then if h e^ nam ely the dying person
is one o f [the forem ost] w ho are brought near to A llah^ - these are
the ones who did obligatory and recom m ended actions, and refrained
from p ro h ib ited and d islik ed actions, and av o id ed unnecessary
indulgence in perm issible actions.
c-f[t'or him there will be] restp that is, repose, reassurance, happiness,
joy, and delight o f the heart and soul.
^fragrance]? - the w ord translated here as ^ fra g ra n c e ^ is a w ord
w hich includes physical pleasures such as all kinds o f food, drink
and so on. It was also said that this w ord refers to a particular scent.

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sfand a garden o f blissp that com prises both rest and fragrance, in
which there is that w hich no eye has seen, no ear has heard, nor has
it ever crossed the m ind o f man. So these glad tidings are given to
the forem ost at the tim e o f death, w hich m ake their souls alm ost soar
with happiness and joy.
This is like the passage in w hich A llah says:
^Verily, those who say: O ur Lord is A llah, then rem ain steadfast, to
them the angels will com e down [at the tim e o f death, saying]: Fear
not, nor grieve; but receive the glad tidings o f paradise which you were
prom ised. We have been your close friends in the life o f this w orld
and [will rem ain so] in the hereafter. There you w ill have all that your
souls desire and there you will have all that you ask for, a recom pense
from One W ho is O ft-Forgiving, M ost Merciful.)? (FussHat 41: 30-32)
^ I f he is one o f those on the right)? - They are the ones who did
obligatory duties and refrained from that w hich was prohibited, even
if they fell short in som e duties that did not underm ine their faith and
b elief in A llah’s oneness. It will be said to one o f them:
^ P eac e be upon you, for you are one o f those on the right)* - it
will be said to him: N ow you are safe from troubles, problem s and
punishm ent, because you are one o f those on the right, w ho were kept
safe from sins that incur doom.
^B u t if he is one o f the m isguided d eniers^ that is, those w ho
rejected the truth and w ent astray from right guidance,
^th en he w ill be w elcom ed w ith scalding w ater and he w ill bum
in hell)? that is, their w elcom e, on the day w hen they com e to their
Lord, will be burning in hell w hich will encom pass them and reach
their hearts.
If they seek help due to severe thirst,
*[.. .they will be given w ater like [boiling] dregs o f oil that w ill scald
their faces. W hat a dreadful drink, and w hat a m iserable resting-
place!)* (al-Kahf 18: 29)

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^Verily this)? that A llah (^g) m entions about the requital o f His
slaves for their deeds, both good and bad, and the details thereof, c-[is
absolute truthj? concerning w hich there can be no doubt; rather it is
established truth that will inevitably com e to pass.
A llah has presented His slaves w ith definitive evidence to that
effect, to the extent that for people o f understanding, it is as if they
can taste it and see it; therefore they praised A llah (■$£) for singling
them out for this great blessing.
H ence A llah (>fe) says: ^S o glorify the nam e o f your Lord, the
M ost Great)?. So glory be to Allah, the A lm ighty Lord, and exalted
be He far above w hat the w rongdoers and deniers say.
Praise be to A llah, the Lord o f the w orlds, m uch good and blessed
praise.

This is the end o f the com m entary on Soorat al-W aqi'ah.


A ll praise and thanks are for A llah, and m ay the b lessin gs and
peace o f A llah be upon Prophet M uhamm ad his fam ily, and
his C om panions abundantly until the D ay o f Judgem ent.

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57.
Soorat al-Hadeed
(Madani)

In the name o f Allah,


the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful

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f (J) %Csr*

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57:1. All that is in the heavens and on earth glorifies Allah, for He is
the Almighty, Most Wise.
57:2. To Him belong the dominion o f the heavens and the earth; He
gives life and causes death, and He has power over all things.
57:3. He is the First and the Last, the Manifest and the Hidden, and
He has knowledge o f all things.

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57:4. [It is] He Who created the heavens and the earth in six days, and
then rose over the Throne [in a manner that befits His Majesty],
He knows all that goes into the earth and all that comes out o f
it, and all that descends from heaven and all that ascends to it.
He is with you wherever you may be, and Allah sees well all
that you do.
57:5. To Allah belongs the dominion o f the heavens and the earth,
and it is to Allah that all things will return.
57:6. He causes the night to encroach upon the day, and the day to
encroach upon the night, and He knows well what is in [people’s]
hearts.

H ere A llah tells us o f His greatness and majesty, and the all-
encom passing nature o f His authority. All that is in the heavens and
on earth o f living beings that speak and those that do not speak, and
inanim ate objects, glorify and praise their Lord, and declare H im to
be above all that is not befitting to His majesty.
They are obedient to their Lord and subm it to His m ight, and the
effects o f His w isdom are apparent in them. H ence He says:
^ fo r He is the A lm ighty, M ost Wise)?. This highlights the fact that
all creatures, in both the upper and low er realm s, need their Lord in
all situations; that His m ight subdues all things, and that all o f His
creation is subject to His w isdom and all His com m ands are based
on divine wisdom .
Then He tells us o f the all-encom passing nature o f His dom inion:
f[To Him belong the dom inion o f the heavens and the earth; He
gives life and causes death)* that is, He is the C reator o f all that, W ho
grants it provision and controls it by His m ight, fjand He has pow er
over all things)?.
^H e is the First)? before W hom there is nothing
{jand the Last)? after W hom there is nothing,
tfthe Manifest)? above W hom there is nothing

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cjand the H idden^ and there is nothing m ore hidden than Him.
^and He has knowledge o f all things)? for His knowledge encompasses
all that is apparent and all that is hidden, all that is secret and concealed,
and all m atters, both earlier and later.
^[It is] He W ho created the heavens and the earth in six days)?, the
first o f w hich w as Sunday and the last o f w hich was Friday
efand then rose over the Throne [in a m anner that befits His Majesty])?,
above all o f creation.
^H e know s all that goes into the earthy o f seeds, anim als, rain
and so on
dand all that com es out o f it)? o f plants, trees, anim als and the like
dand all that descends from heaven)? o f angels, divine decrees and
provision
dand all that ascends to it)? o f angels, souls, supplication, deeds and
so on.
^H e is w ith you w herever you m ay be)? - this is like the verse in
which Allah says:
T here is no private co nversation am ong three but H e is their
fourth, or am ong five but He is their sixth, or am ong few er or m ore
than that, but He is with them , w herever they m ay be...)? (al-Mujddilah
58: 7)
This “being w ith” m eans that He is w ith them by m eans o f His
know ledge and His being aw are o f them. H ence He issues a w arning
and a prom ise to them o f requital for deeds by saying: ^and Allah sees
well all that you dob that is, He sees all the deeds that you do, and the
intention and attitude behind these deeds, w hether it is righteous or
evil, and He will requite you for it, for He has recorded it against you.
^To A llah belongs the dom inion o f the heavens and the earth)?
that is, He has dom inion and control over His creation and His slaves,
and He disposes o f their affairs how ever He w ills, on the basis o f His
universal and religious decrees, w hich are based on divine wisdom .

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^and it is to Allah that all things will return)? both deeds and the doers
o f the deeds. All people will be presented before Him, and He will
separate the evil from the good; He will reward the doer o f good for
his good deeds, and He will punish the doer o f evil for his evil deeds.
^H e causes the night to encroach upon the day, and the day to
encroach upon the night)? that is, He causes the night to encroach
upon the day, so the night covers people with its darkness so that they
m ay becom e still and rest.
Then He causes the day to encroach upon the night, so that darkness
is dispersed from the land and everything becomes light, so that people
m ay m ove about and pursue their interests and livelihoods.
Allah continues to w rap the night over the day and wrap the day
over the night, alternating betw een them , m aking one longer and the
other shorter, and then vice versa, so that there will be seasons and
tim e will be regulated, and m any interests will be served thereby.
Blessed be Allah, the Lord o f the w orlds, and exalted be the M ost
Generous, M ost Kind, W ho bestows upon His slaves many blessings,
both visible and hidden.
*fand He knows well w hat is in [people’s] hearts)?, so He guides
those w ho He know s are deserving o f that, and He forsakes those
who He knows are not fit to receive His guidance.

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O t-V :ju_bU

57:7. Believe in Allah and His Messenger, and spend [in Allah’s cause]
from that o f which He has made you trustees, for those among
you who believe and spend will have a great reward.
57:8. W hat reason do you have not to believe in Allah when the
M essenger is calling you to believe in your Lord, and when
Allah has already taken a covenant from you, if you care to
believe?
57:9. It is He Who sends down clear revelations to His slave so that He
may bring you forth from the depths o f darkness into the light.
Verily Allah is to you Most Compassionate, Most Merciful.
57:10. What reason do you have not to spend in Allah’s cause, when
to Allah belongs the inheritance o f the heavens and the earth?
Not equal among you are those who spent and fought before the
victory [and those who did not]. They are o f higher rank than
those who spent afterwards and fought. But to each Allah has
promised the ultimate good, and Allah is well aware o f all that
you do.
57:11. Who is he that will lend to Allah a goodly loan, so He will
multiply it for him, and his will be a generous reward?

A llah (:fe) enjo in s His slav es to believ e in H im and in His


M essenger («|§) and w hat he brought, and to spend in His cause
from the wealth which He has enabled them to attain and has entrusted
to them in order to see what they will do.
Having enjoined that. He then encourages and urges them to do
it by m entioning the rew ard that will result from doing so. Hence
He says:

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(f for those am ong you who believe and spend)*, thus com bining belief
in Allah and His M essenger (s|§ ) with spending in His cause
(•(will have a great rew ard^, the greatest and best o f which is the good
pleasure o f their Lord and attaining His paradise and all that it contains
o f eternal bliss, which Allah has prepared for those w ho believe and
those who strive in jihad.
Then A llah m entions the reason w hy they should believe, as there
is no im pedim ent to doing so:
((What reason do you have not to believe in Allah when the M essenger
is calling you to believe in your Lord, and w hen A llah has already
taken a covenant from you, if you care to believe?)* In other words,
w hat is it that is preventing you from believing, when the M essenger
M uham m ad ( j|§ ), w ho is the best o f the M essengers and the noblest
o f those who call to Allah, is calling you?
This is som ething which requires you to hasten to respond to his
call and to the truth that he has brought, for A llah has taken from you
a covenant and prom ise to believe, if you are truly believers.
M oreover, as part o f His kindness and care, A llah has not only
sent you a M essenger who is the noblest o f hum ankind; rather He
has also supported him with m iracles and the clear signs that he has
brought offer p ro o f o f his truthfulness and sincerity.
H ence A llah says: ((It is He W ho sends dow n clear)* that is,
unam biguous ((revelations to His slave)* w hich highlight to people
o f reason the veracity o f all that he has brought, and signals that it is
indeed certain truth.
((so that He m ay bring you forth)* by sending the M essenger ( j|§ )
to you, and by m eans o f w hat Allah has sent down at his hands o f the
Book and w isdom ,
((from the depths o f darkness into the light)* that is, from the darkness
o f ignorance and d isb elief to the light o f know ledge and faith.

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This stem s from divine m ercy and com passion, for A llah is more
m erciful to His slaves than a m other to her child. ^Verily A llah is to
you M ost C om passionate, M ost Merciful]*.
^W hat reason do you have not to spend in A llah’s cause, when
to A llah belongs the inheritance o f the heavens and the earth?^ That
is, w hat is preventing you from spending in A llah’s cause - which
refers to all w ays o f doing good, and w hat is m aking you so m iserly
cfwhenh in fact you do not own anything; rather dto Allah belongs the
inheritance o f the heavens and the earthy? Hence all wealth will pass
from your hands, or you will die and leave it behind, and ultim ately
dom inion will return to its true Owner, may He be blessed and exalted.
So m ake the m ost o f the opportunity to spend so long as wealth
is in your hands.
T hen A llah (4c) states that deeds vary in virtue, according to
circum stances and divine wisdom : ^N o t equal am ong you are those
who spent and fought before the victory [and those who did not]. They
are o f higher rank than those who spent afterwards and fought^. W hat
is m eant by the victory here is the victory o f al-H udaybiyah when a
peace deal was concluded betw een the M essenger ( i|§ ) and Quraysh
which was one o f the greatest o f victories, by m eans o f which Islam
was spread and the M uslim s w ere able to m ix with the disbelievers
and call them to Islam w ithout any objection. At that tim e the people
entered the religion o f Allah in crowds, and Islam gained a great deal
o f m om entum .
Before this victory, the M uslim s w ere not able to call people to
Islam except in places w here people had already becom e M uslim ,
such as M adinah and its environs.
Those who became Muslim among the people o f M akkah and other
lands where the polytheists prevailed w ere persecuted and lived in a
state o f fear. Hence those who becam e Muslim before that victory, and

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spent and fought in A llah’s cause were o f higher status and attained
a greater rew ard than those who did not becom e M uslim and fight or
spend until after that, as is dictated by wisdom. Therefore the majority
o f the forem ost and m ost prom inent o f the Sahabah becam e M uslim
before that victory.
Because stating that one is m ore virtuous than the other m ay give
an im pression o f criticism or underm ining the one that is regarded
as less virtuous, in order to avoid such m isconceptions Allah says:
«(But to each A llah has prom ised the ultim ate good)* that is, to those
who becam e M uslim and fought and spent both before and after the
victory - to all o f them Allah has prom ised paradise. This is indicative
o f the virtue o f all o f the Sahabah (,^|e.), as Allah has testified to their
faith and prom ised them paradise.
^an d Allah is well aw are o f all that you do)j and He will requite
each o f you according to w hat He knows o f your deeds.
T hen A llah urges them to spend in His cause, because jih ad
depends on such funding and the spending o f w ealth on equipm ent
and preparation o f fighters. Hence Allah says: ^W ho is he that will
lend to A llah a goodly loan)*. T his refers to spending w ith good
intentions, sincerely for the sake o f Allah, in accordance with that
which is pleasing to Allah, from perm issible and w holesom e wealth,
giving it willingly. It is by His generosity that Allah (4s) describes it
as a loan, for in fact the w ealth belongs to Him and the person who
gives it is His slave, and He m ultiplies the rew ard for it m any times,
for He is the M ost Generous, the Bestower.
T his m u ltip licatio n o f the rew ard w ill com e on the D ay o f
Resurrection, the day when the extreme need o f all people will become
obvious and everyone will need even the sm allest am ount o f reward.
Hence Allah says:

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57:15. So this day no ransom will be accepted from you [O hypocrites]


or from those who disbelieved. Your abode will be hell; that is
where you belong - a hapless journey’s end.

Here Allah says, highlighting the virtue o f faith and how happy
the believers will be with their faith on the Day o f Resurrection:
^[R em em ber] the day w hen you w ill see the believing m en and
believing women, with their light streaming ahead o f them and on their
right)? that is, on the Day o f Resurrection, w hen the sun is rolled up
and the m oon is eclipsed, and the people find them selves in darkness,
and the sirat is set up over hell, at that time you will see the believing
men and believing wom en with their light stream ing ahead o f them
and on their right. They will w alk by virtue o f their faith and light in
that difficult and frightening situation, each according to the level o f
his faith, and at that tim e they will receive the greatest glad tidings,
as it will be said to them:
dG lad tidings for you this day: gardens through which rivers flow,
to abide therein forever. That is the suprem e triumph)?.
By Allah, how sweet and delightful these glad tidings will be, when
they attain everything they longed for and are saved from everything
they feared.
W hen the hypocrites see the light o f the believers by w hich they
walk, when their own light has been extinguished and they are left
confused in the darkness, they will say to the believers: ^W ait for us,
so that we m ay have some o f your light)* that is, slow down so that
we m ay catch up with you and get some o f your light by w hich we
m ay walk and be saved from the punishm ent.
But ^It will be said)? to them: ^G o back and seek light elsewhere)*
that is, if doing so is possible. But in fact that will not be possible;
rather it will be quite im possible.

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^T hen a wall will be set up betw een them)? that is, betw een the
believers and the hypocrites; it w ill be a strong and unbreachable
barrier,
^w hich will have a gate, on the inside o f w hich there will be mercy)?
- that will be the side w here the believers will be
^and on the outside there will be punishm ent^ - that will be the side
where the hypocrites will be.
T he hypocrites will call out to the believers, beseeching them
and asking them for mercy: «(Were we not with yo u ^ in the previous
world, saying “/a ildha ilia Allah (there is no god but Allah)”, praying,
fasting, striving in jihad and doing w hat you did?
^T hey will say: Yes)?, you w ere indeed with us in the previous
world, appearing outw ardly to do the sam e as we did, but your deeds
w ere the deeds o f hypocrites, devoid o f faith and sound, sincere
intention.
Rather ^you gave in to confusion and tem ptation, you kept waiting
[for som e m isfortune to befall us], you doubted)* that is, you doubted
what A llah foretold, w hich was not subject to doubt;
^and you were deceived by false hopes)* w hen you hoped to attain
the sam e as the believers although you w ere not certain in your faith
^until the decree o f Allah cam e to pass)? that is, until death cam e to
you when you were still in that blam ew orthy state
^T hus [Shaytan] the deceiver deceived you concerning Allah)?, for it
was the Shaytan who m ade disbelief and doubt fair-seem ing to you,
and you were content with that doubt, you trusted his prom ise and
believed what he said.
€[So this day no ransom will be accepted from you [O hypocrites]
or from those who disbelieved)?; even if you offered in ransom an
earth’s weight o f gold and as m uch again, it w ould not be accepted
from you.
^Your abode will be hell; that is w here you belong^ and it will take
care o f you and w elcom e you

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426 I Tafseer as-Sa'di Juz'27

«fa hapless jo u rn ey ’s en d ^ in the fire.


Allah (4s) says elsewhere:
«|And as for him w hose good deeds weigh lightly in the balance, his
abode will be the abyss. And how could you know w hat it is? It is a
fire, blazing hot.p (al-Qari'ah 101: 8-11)

0 0

(W -n J j~ .)

57:16. Has the time not come for the hearts o f those who believe to be
humbled at the mention o f Allah and o f what has been revealed
o f the truth, and they should not be like those who were given
the Book before, whose hearts grew hard with the passage o f
time? And many o f them were evildoers.
57:17. Know that Allah gives life to the earth after its death. We have
made the signs clear to you so that you may understand.

Having m entioned the situation o f the believing m en and w om en,


and the hypocrite m en and w om en in the hereafter, w hich should
prom pt hearts to hum ble them selves before their Lord and subm it to
His greatness, Allah now gently chides the believers for not doing
that, and says:
^H as the tim e not com e for the hearts o f those who believe to be
hum bled at the mention o f Allah and o f w hat has been revealed o f the
truth)? that is, has the time not com e when their hearts should soften
and be hum bled at m ention o f Allah and the rem inder which is the

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Q u r’an, and to subm it to His com m ands and prohibitions, and w hat
has been revealed o f the truth, which has been brought by M uhammad
( |g ) ?
This is urging the believers to strive hard to m ake their hearts
hum ble before A llah and to accept w hat He has sent dow n o f the
Book and wisdom , and to pay heed to divine exhortation and Islamic
rulings at all times, and to constantly check them selves on the basis
o f those teachings.
^ an d they should not be like those w ho w ere given the B ook
before, whose hearts grew hard with the passage o f tim e^ that is, they
should not be like those to whom Allah sent down scripture that should
have caused them to soften their hearts and subm it fully to A llah’s
will, but they did not persist in follow ing it and w ere not steadfast in
adhering to it. Rather with the passage o f tim e they becam e heedless,
so their faith dim inished and their certainty faded.
^ . . .w hose hearts grew hard with the passage o f tim e? A nd many
o f them were evildoers^. For the heart needs to be rem inded at all
tim es o f that w hich A llah sent dow n and it needs to be refreshed
with words o f wisdom . It is not appropriate to be careless about this
matter, for that is the cause o f hardheartedness and failing to weep
(with fear o f Allah).
^K now that Allah gives life to the earth after its death. We have
m ade the signs clear to you so that you m ay understand^. The signs
inspire minds to attain knowledge o f the divine attributes, for the One
W ho gives life to the earth after its death is able to bring the dead
back to life after their death, and then He will requite them for their
deeds. The One Who gives life to the earth after its death by m eans o f
rainw ater is able to give life to dead hearts by m eans o f w hat He has
sent down o f truth to His M essenger (^ § ) . This verse indicates that
the one who is not guided by the signs o f Allah and does not submit
to the laws o f Allah has no pow er o f reasoning.

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57:18. Verily men and women who give in charity and lend to Allah a
goodly loan, it will be multiplied for them and theirs will be a
generous reward.
57:19. Those who believe in Allah and His Messengers, it is they
who are the strong and true in faith. And the martyrs will have
their reward and their light with their Lord. As for those who
disbelieve and deny Our revelations, they will be inhabitants
o f the blazing fire.

*(Verily men and women who give in charity)* - the structure o f


the words translated here as «fmen and women who give in charity^
refers to those who give a great deal o f charity, as prescribed in Islamic
teaching, and who spend in ways that earn the pleasure o f Allah
^and lend to Allah a goodly loan)? by giving o f their wealth to
charitable causes, the reward o f which will be stored up for them
with their Lord
^it will be multiplied for them)* because a good deed earns a tenfold
reward, up to seven hundredfold, up to many times more.
«fand theirs will be a generous reward^ which is wh