فَلَمَّا جَاءَهُمْ الْحَقُّ مِنْ عِنْدِنَا قَالُوا إِنَّ هَذَا لَسِحْرٌ مُبِينٌ (يونس: 76).
قَالَ مُوسَى أَتَقُولُونَ لِلْحَقِّ لَمَّا جَاءَكُمْ أَسِحْرٌ هَذَا وَلاَ يُفْلِحُ السَّاحِرُونَ (يونس: 77).
قَالُوا أَجِئْتَنَا لِتَلْفِتَنَا عَمَّا وَجَدْنَا عَلَيْهِ آبَاءَنَا وَتَكُونَ لَكُمَا الْكِبْرِيَاءُ فِي الأَرْضِ وَمَا نَحْنُ لَكُمَا بِمُؤْمِنِينَ (يونس: 78).
وَقَالَ فِرْعَوْنُ ائْتُونِي بِكُلِّ سَاحِرٍ عَلِيمٍ (يونس: 79).
فَلَمَّا جَاءَ السَّحَرَةُ قَالَ لَهُمْ مُوسَى أَلْقُوا مَا أَنْتُمْ مُلْقُونَ (يونس: 80).
فَلَمَّا أَلْقَوْا قَالَ مُوسَى مَا جِئْتُمْ بِهِ السِّحْرُ إِنَّ اللَّهَ سَيُبْطِلُهُ إِنَّ اللَّهَ لاَ يُصْلِحُ عَمَلَ الْمُفْسِدِينَ (يونس: 81).
وَيُحِقُّ اللَّهُ الْحَقَّ بِكَلِمَاتِهِ وَلَوْ كَرِهَ الْمُجْرِمُونَ (يونس: 82).
فَمَا آمَنَ لِمُوسَى إِلاَّ ذُرِّيَّةٌ مِنْ قَوْمِهِ عَلَى خَوْفٍ مِنْ فِرْعَوْنَ وَمَلَئِهِمْ أَنْ يَفْتِنَهُمْ وَإِنَّ فِرْعَوْنَ لَعَالٍ فِي الأَرْضِ وَإِنَّهُ لَمِنْ الْمُسْرِفِينَ (يونس: 83).
وَقَالَ مُوسَى يَاقَوْمِ إِنْ كُنْتُمْ آمَنْتُمْ بِاللَّهِ فَعَلَيْهِ تَوَكَّلُوا إِنْ كُنْتُمْ مُسْلِمِينَ (يونس: 84).
فَقَالُوا عَلَى اللَّهِ تَوَكَّلْنَا رَبَّنَا لاَ تَجْعَلْنَا فِتْنَةً لِلْقَوْمِ الظَّالِمِينَ (يونس: 85).
وَنَجِّنَا بِرَحْمَتِكَ مِنْ الْقَوْمِ الْكَافِرِينَ (يونس: 86).
وَأَوْحَيْنَا إِلَى مُوسَى وَأَخِيهِ أَنْ تَبَوَّأَا لِقَوْمِكُمَا بِمِصْرَ بُيُوتًا وَاجْعَلُوا بُيُوتَكُمْ قِبْلَةً وَأَقِيمُوا الصَّلاَةَ وَبَشِّرْ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ (يونس: 87).
وَقَالَ مُوسَى رَبَّنَا إِنَّكَ آتَيْتَ فِرْعَوْنَ وَمَلَأَهُ زِينَةً وَأَمْوَالاً فِي الْحَيَاةِ الدُّنْيَا رَبَّنَا لِيُضِلُّوا عَنْ سَبِيلِكَ رَبَّنَا اطْمِسْ عَلَى أَمْوَالِهِمْ وَاشْدُدْ عَلَى قُلُوبِهِمْ فَلاَ يُؤْمِنُوا حَتَّى يَرَوْا الْعَذَابَ الأَلِيمَ (يونس: 88).
قَالَ قَدْ أُجِيبَتْ دَعْوَتُكُمَا فَاسْتَقِيمَا وَلاَ تَتَّبِعَانِ سَبِيلَ الَّذِينَ لاَ يَعْلَمُونَ (يونس: 89).
وَجَاوَزْنَا بِبَنِي إِسْرَائِيلَ الْبَحْرَ فَأَتْبَعَهُمْ فِرْعَوْنُ وَجُنُودُهُ بَغْيًا وَعَدْوًا حَتَّى إِذَا أَدْرَكَهُ الْغَرَقُ قَالَ آمَنْتُ أَنَّهُ لاَ إِلَهَ إِلاَّ الَّذِي آمَنَتْ بِهِ بَنُو إِسْرَائِيلَ وَأَنَا مِنْ الْمُسْلِمِينَ (يونس: 90).
أَالآنَ وَقَدْ عَصَيْتَ قَبْلُ وَكُنْتَ مِنْ الْمُفْسِدِينَ (يونس: 91).
فَالْيَوْمَ نُنَجِّيكَ بِبَدَنِكَ لِتَكُونَ لِمَنْ خَلْفَكَ آيَةً وَإِنَّ كَثِيرًا مِنْ النَّاسِ عَنْ آيَاتِنَا لَغَافِلُونَ (يونس: 92).
وَلَقَدْ بَوَّأْنَا بَنِي إِسْرَائِيلَ مُبَوَّأَ صِدْقٍ وَرَزَقْنَاهُمْ مِنْ الطَّيِّبَاتِ فَمَا اخْتَلَفُوا حَتَّى جَاءَهُمُ الْعِلْمُ إِنَّ رَبَّكَ يَقْضِي بَيْنَهُمْ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ فِيمَا كَانُوا فِيهِ يَخْتَلِفُونَ (يونس: 93).
فَإِنْ كُنْتَ فِي شَكٍّ مِمَّا أَنْزَلْنَا إِلَيْكَ فَاسْأَلِ الَّذِينَ يَقْرَءُونَ الْكِتَابَ مِنْ قَبْلِكَ لَقَدْ جَاءَكَ الْحَقُّ مِنْ رَبِّكَ فَلاَ تَكُونَنَّ مِنْ المُمْتَرِينَ (يونس: 94).
وَلاَ تَكُونَنَّ مِنْ الَّذِينَ كَذَّبُوا بِآيَاتِ اللَّهِ فَتَكُونَ مِنْ الْخَاسِرِينَ (يونس: 95).
إِنَّ الَّذِينَ حَقَّتْ عَلَيْهِمْ كَلِمَةُ رَبِّكَ لاَ يُؤْمِنُونَ (يونس: 96).
وَلَوْ جَاءَتْهُمْ كُلُّ آيَةٍ حَتَّى يَرَوْا الْعَذَابَ الأَلِيمَ (يونس: 97).
فَلَوْلاَ كَانَتْ قَرْيَةٌ آمَنَتْ فَنَفَعَهَا إِيمَانُهَا إِلاَّ قَوْمَ يُونُسَ لَمَّا آمَنُوا كَشَفْنَا عَنْهُمْ عَذَابَ الْخِزْيِ فِي الْحَيَاةِ الدُّنْيَا وَمَتَّعْنَاهُمْ إِلَى حِينٍ (يونس: 98).
وَلَوْ شَاءَ رَبُّكَ لَآمَنَ مَنْ فِي الأَرْضِ كُلُّهُمْ جَمِيعًا أَفَأَنْتَ تُكْرِهُ النَّاسَ حَتَّى يَكُونُوا مُؤْمِنِينَ (يونس: 99).
وَمَا كَانَ لِنَفْسٍ أَنْ تُؤْمِنَ إِلاَّ بِإِذْنِ اللَّهِ وَيَجْعَلُ الرِّجْسَ عَلَى الَّذِينَ لاَ يَعْقِلُونَ (يونس: 100).
قُلْ انْظُرُوا مَاذَا فِي السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالأَرْضِ وَمَا تُغْنِي الآيَاتُ وَالنُّذُرُ عَنْ قَوْمٍ لاَ يُؤْمِنُونَ (يونس: 101).
فَهَلْ يَنْتَظِرُونَ إِلاَّ مِثْلَ أَيَّامِ الَّذِينَ خَلَوْا مِنْ قَبْلِهِمْ قُلْ فَانْتَظِرُوا إِنِّي مَعَكُمْ مِنْ الْمُنْتَظِرِينَ (يونس: 102).
ثُمَّ نُنَجِّي رُسُلَنَا وَالَّذِينَ آمَنُوا كَذَلِكَ حَقًّا عَلَيْنَا نُنْجِ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ (يونس: 103).
قُلْ يَاأَيُّهَا النَّاسُ إِنْ كُنْتُمْ فِي شَكٍّ مِنْ دِينِي فَلاَ أَعْبُدُ الَّذِينَ تَعْبُدُونَ مِنْ دُونِ اللَّهِ وَلَكِنْ أَعْبُدُ اللَّهَ الَّذِي يَتَوَفَّاكُمْ وَأُمِرْتُ أَنْ أَكُونَ مِنْ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ (يونس: 104).
وَأَنْ أَقِمْ وَجْهَكَ لِلدِّينِ حَنِيفًا وَلاَ تَكُونَنَّ مِنْ الْمُشْرِكِينَ (يونس: 105).
وَلاَ تَدْعُ مِنْ دُونِ اللَّهِ مَا لاَ يَنْفَعُكَ وَلاَ يَضُرُّكَ فَإِنْ فَعَلْتَ فَإِنَّكَ إِذًا مِنْ الظَّالِمِينَ (يونس: 106).
وَإِنْ يَمْسَسْكَ اللَّهُ بِضُرٍّ فَلاَ كَاشِفَ لَهُ إِلاَّ هُوَ وَإِنْ يُرِدْكَ بِخَيْرٍ فَلاَ رَادَّ لِفَضْلِهِ يُصِيبُ بِهِ مَنْ يَشَاءُ مِنْ عِبَادِهِ وَهُوَ الْغَفُورُ الرَّحِيمُ (يونس: 107).
قُلْ يَاأَيُّهَا النَّاسُ قَدْ جَاءَكُمُ الْحَقُّ مِنْ رَبِّكُمْ فَمَنْ اهْتَدَى فَإِنَّمَا يَهْتَدِي لِنَفْسِهِ وَمَنْ ضَلَّ فَإِنَّمَا يَضِلُّ عَلَيْهَا وَمَا أَنَا عَلَيْكُمْ بِوَكِيلٍ (يونس: 108).
وَاتَّبِعْ مَا يُوحَى إِلَيْكَ وَاصْبِرْ حَتَّى يَحْكُمَ اللَّهُ وَهُوَ خَيْرُ الْحَاكِمِينَ (يونس: 109)
SURAH YOUNAS AYAH No 75 To 109
(10:76) And when truth came to them from Us, they said: ‘Indeed this is plain sorcery.4
74. The story of Prophet Moses (peace be upon him) and Pharaoh is also being related to serve as an object lesson for the Quraish, who were behaving towards Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) in the same way as Pharaoh and his people had behaved towards Prophet Moses (peace be upon him); for the response to the Message by the Quraish was similar to that of Pharaoh’s people. Refer to (Ayat 2 of this Surah).
In this connection, it will also be worthwhile to note that the mission of Prophets Moses and Aaron (peace be upon them) was not merely to liberate the Israelites from the slavery of Pharaoh, as some people have opined. If we keep in view the context in which the story occurs here, it will be quite clear that they, too, were appointed to pursue the same mission that was entrusted to all the Prophets from Noah to Muhammad (peace be upon them all).
The theme of this Surah from its very beginning has been this: Acknowledge Allah alone as your Lord and Deity for He is the Lord of the whole universe. Believe in the life after death in which you shall have to present yourselves before Allah and render the account of all you did in this world. Then the Surah makes it clear to those who rejected the message that history bears witness to this that the true success of humanity has always followed the acceptance of this message. Therefore it admonished them: You should also accept the
message which has always been put forward by all the Messengers, and establish your life in its entirety on these articles of faith. For, those who rejected the message were destroyed in the end.
Thus it has become quite clear from the context in which their story occurs, that the main object of the mission of Prophets Moses and Aaron (peace be upon them) was the same as that of all the other Prophets. It is true that one of their objects was also to liberate the
Israelites, a Muslim community, from the domination of a kafir community if it persisted in its unbelief. But this had a secondary place in their mission, and was not its main object. The real object has been stated explicitly in (Surah An-Naziat, Ayats 17-19), wherein his Lord
said to Moses: Go to Pharaoh for he has transgressed the bounds of subjection and say to him, “Are you prepared to reform yourselves and fear your Lord, if I guide you towards Him”.
The part played by the two Prophets in liberating the Israelites from Pharaoh’s slavery became prominent in history because he and his nobles rejected the message and the Prophets had to rescue their people from their slavery. Accordingly, the Quran gave it the same prominence as in history. But if one does not commit the error of isolating the details of the Quran from its fundamental principles but studies them in the light of these principles, one cannot fall a prey to the misunderstanding that the mere liberation of a community could be the main object of the mission of a Prophet and the propagation of the message its secondary object only. See (Surah Taha, Ayats 44-52), (Surah Az- Zukhruf, Ayats 46-56), (Surah Al-Muzammil, Ayats 15-16).
(10:77) Moses said: ‘Do you say this about the truth after it has come to you? Is this sorcery? You call this sorcery although sorcerers never come to a happy end.75
75. “And the sorcerers will not succeed” is meaningful for this is the answer to their charge:
“Is this a sorcery.” It means this: You have called the signs presented by Moses (peace be upon him) a sorcery on account of its apparent likeness to it. You have not considered the clear and marked distinctions between the characteristics of the Prophets and sorcerers.
Otherwise you would never have dared to make such an absurd charge. Have you ever seen a sorcerer go before a tyrant and talk boldly and fearlessly to him as Moses (peace be upon him) did, and admonish him God-worship? You know that a sorcerer behaves quite differently. He starts with the flattery of the courtiers so that they may obtain for him the permission to show his tricks. After this he goes to the presence of His Majesty and makes obsequious bows and very humbly requests him to see his tricks. Then he prays for his long life and prosperity and begs for his reward. Now, you can judge for yourselves whether the Prophet is a sorcerer or a far greater and far higher personality than even kings and the like.
(10:78) They replied: ‘Have you come to turn us away from the way of our forefathers that the two of you might become supreme in the land? We shall never accept what the two of you say.76
76. It is obvious that if this demand had been merely for the liberation of the Israelites, there could have been no question of any threat to Pharaoh’s kingdom. The threat was because of the message which demanded subordination to the truth, for it threatened the system which was based on shirk and on which depended the domination of Pharaoh and his chiefs and priests. See (E.N. 66 of Surah Al-Aaraf) and (E.N. 43 of Surah Al-Momin).
(10:80) And when the sorcerers came Moses said to them: ‘Cast whatever you wish to cast.’
(10:81) Then when they had cast (their staffs), Moses said: ‘What you have produced is sheer sorcery. 77 Allah will certainly reduce it to naught. Surely Allah does not set right the work of the mischief makers.
77. That is, what I showed was not sorcery but sorcery is that which you are showing.
(10:82) Allah vindicates the truth by His commands, howsoever much the guilty might detest that.’
(10:83) None but a few youths of Moses’ people accepted him, fearing that Pharaoh and their own chiefs would persecute them. Indeed Pharaoh was mighty in the land, he was among those who exceed all limits.78
78. Though literally zurriyyah means offspring, it has been translated into youths because the Quran has used this word here to point out a specific aspect of the matter. It is this:
During that fearful period of persecution only a few young men and women showed the moral courage of acknowledging the Messenger of the truth as their leader and becoming his standard bearers. On the contrary, their fathers, mothers and elders had not the courage to follow him and endanger their worldly interests and even their lives. They not only followed the way of ease and expediency, but also discouraged their youth, saying, “Don’t go near Moses: for you will thus invite trouble both for yourselves and your elders.”
The Quran has mentioned this particular aspect of the matter because the same was the case of the response to the mission of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). In its initial stage, those who came forward were not the elders and the old people but some courageous
youth. These first Muslims who were boldly facing persecution and enduring hardships for the sake of Islam were the young people. For instance, Ali-ibn-Abi Talib, Jaafar Tayyar, Zubair, Talhah, Saad bin Abi Waqqas, Musab bin Umair, Abdullah bin Masud, etc. were under twenty years when they embraced Islam. Abdur-Rahman bin Auf, Bilal, Suhail were under thirty years, and Abu Ubaidah-bin-al-Jarrah, Zaid bin Harithah, Uthman bin Affan and Umar Faruq were under thirty-five years. Abu Bakr was no more than 38 when he embraced Islam. Among the early Muslims, there is only one instance of a companion, Ammar bin Yasir, who was of the same age as the Prophet (peace be upon him) and another of Ubaidah bin Harith Muttalabi, who was older than the Prophet (peace be upon him).
79. Some people have misinterpreted the Arabic words say that all the people of Israel were unbelievers and at first only a few of them believed in the message. But when amama is followed by the letter lam, it generally means obeying and following. Thus the original words of the text will mean “a few youth from his own people obeyed and followed Moses,” that is, only a few young people from the whole tribe of the Israelites had the courage to accept and acknowledge Prophet Moses (peace be upon him) as their leader and guide and stand by him in his struggle with Pharaoh and his chiefs. The words that follow make it quite clear that the Israelites refrained from this not because they did not believe in Prophet Moses (peace be upon him) or his message but because they (specially their elders) were afraid of exposing themselves to the persecution of Pharaoh. This state of fear was the result of their moral degeneration. Though all of them racially and religiously belonged to the community of Prophets Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and Joseph (peace be upon them all) and, therefore, were Muslims, yet slavery of centuries had so much degraded them that they had lost that spirit of Islam which impels one to become the standard bearer of Islam against the domination of unbelief and deviation, or imbues one with the courage to stand by the one who had raised that banner.
The Bible has described their degraded condition at the time of the conflict with Pharaoh in Exodus 5: 20-21: And they met Moses and Aaron, who stood in the way, as they came forth from Pharaoh: And they said unto them, the Lord look upon you, and judge; because ye
have made our savior to be abhorred n the eyes of Pharaoh, and in the eyes of his servants, to put a sword in their hand to slay us. The Talmud (Selections by H. Polano, page 152) confirms the same:
Yea, said the overburdened children of Israel to Moses and Aaron: We are like a lamb which the wolf has carried from its flock, the shepherd strives to take it from him, but between the two the lamb is pulled to pieces; between ye and Pharaoh will we all be killed.
The Quran also refers to this in (Surah Al-Aaraf, Ayat 129):
His people answered, we were oppressed before you came and now again we are being oppressed after you have come.
80. The Arabic word musrifin literally means transgressors, or those who are not bound by any limits. They are the people who do not hesitate to employ even the most wicked methods to achieve their object: who practice without any pangs of conscience, cruelty,
immorality, barbarism etc. if these serve their purpose, and who cross all limits in pursuit of their desires. In short, they are such people as know no limits to stop at.
(10:84) Moses said: ‘My people! If you believe in Allah and are truly Muslims 81 then place your reliance on Him alone.’
81. The fact that Prophet Moses (peace be upon him) in his address called his people “Muslims” shows that all the people of the community of Israel were Muslims; otherwise he could not say to them, “if you are Muslims”. He meant to urge them to be brave, saying: If
you are true Muslims, as you profess to be, do not fear the might of Pharaoh but put your trust in the might of Allah.
(10:85) They replied: ‘We place our reliance on Allah. Our Lord! Do not make us a trial for the oppressors,83
82. Those, who responded to the appeal of Prophet Moses (peace be upon him) were those youth who obeyed and followed him, and not the Israelites, as a community, as is obvious from the context.
83. The prayer, “Our Lord, do not make us a trial for the wrongdoing people” is very comprehensive in meaning. Whenever the standard bearers of the truth rise up to establish virtue and eradicate the prevalent evil, they come into conflict with unjust people, who, for
one reason or the other, are always on the lookout to find fault with them. First, there are the champions of falsehood, who try their level best to crush down with full force the champions of the truth. Then there are the so called champions of the truth who profess to believe in it but are not prepared to enter into conflict with the powerful government of the time. Therefore they declare it to be a useless and foolish effort, and begin to invent excuses to justify the wrong stand they take in regard to the struggle with falsehood in order to silence the prick of conscience they feel for their criminal attitude of cowardice. Accordingly, they try to prove that it is these standard bearers of the truth who are in the wrong and not them. Lastly, there are the common people, who watch the conflict as bystanders and join
forces with those who prove to be more powerful of the two, whether they are the supporters of the truth or of falsehood.
Now let us consider how the champions of the truth are liable to become a cause of trial for these unjust people. If they are crushed down or defeated, the first group declares, we were in the right and not these foolish people: otherwise they could not have been defeated. The second group says, their defeat has proved that they did not make the correct estimate of the circumstances and caused the destruction of valuable lives by coming in conflict with the
mighty powers. Moreover, the Shariah has not made it obligatory on us to expose ourselves to risk, when we are fulfilling the most essential religious duties without any restrictions from the tyrants of the day. As regards to the common people, their criterion of judging the truth is this: Whatever triumphs is truth. Therefore their defeat has proved that the champions of the truth must be in the wrong. Likewise, every mistake and error the champions of the truth commit, every weakness they show in the face of overwhelming odds against them, every moral fault to which anyone of them succumbs, becomes a good excuse for those who intend to stick to falsehood. Consequently, the invitation to the truth becomes dormant for years after their defeat.
Thus it has become quite clear that this prayer of the companions of Prophet Moses (peace be upon him) was well timed and meaningful: Our Lord, have mercy upon us so that we might not become a cause of trial for the unjust people: protect us from errors, defects and, weaknesses and make our efforts successful in this world so that we may become a source of goodness to Thy creatures and not a source of evil for the unjust people.
(10:86) and deliver us, through Your mercy, from the unbelievers.’
(10:87) And We directed Moses and his brother: ‘Prepare a few houses for your people in Egypt, and make your houses a direction for men to pray, and establish Prayer, and give glad tidings to the men of faith.84
84. There is a difference of opinion among the commentators in regard to the meaning of this verse. As for me, I have considered deeply its wording and the circumstances under which this was sent down, and have come to the conclusion that Prophet Moses (peace be upon him) was commanded to build or acquire some houses for the establishment of Salah in congregation This was necessitated because the system of Salat in congregation had been abandoned by the Israelites and the Egyptian Muslims as a result of their persecution by the government, and owing to the weakness of their faith. As this had brought about their disintegration and killed their religious spirit, it was essential to re-establish the system of Salah in congregation, which is indeed the first and foremost thing for the revival of that
spirit and the integration of a scattered Muslim community and its powers.
As regards to appointing your houses as qiblah, I am of the opinion that it means: Set apart these houses as common places of worship for offering Salah in congregation and the central places for holding their meetings. That is why it is followed by establishing Salat, which means that they should offer their Salat collectively in congregation instead of individually.
85. The Arabic word Bashir means: Fill them with hope and courage by giving them the good news of success by the grace of Allah. And they needed that very badly at that time, for they were full of despair, fear and depression.
(10:88) Moses prayed:86 ‘Our Lord! You bestowed upon Pharaoh and his nobles splendor and riches’ in the world. Our Lord! Have You done this that they may lead people astray from Your path? Our Lord! Obliterate their riches and harden their hearts that they may not believe until they observe the painful chastisement.87
86. This prayer was offered by Prophet Moses (peace be upon him) during the last period of his stay in Egypt. There was a long interval between this and the events mentioned in the preceding verse which happened during the early days of his mission. The details of this
intervening period are available at other places in the Quran.
87. The Arabic word zeenat includes the magnificence, grandeur, glory and the apparent brilliance of their culture and civilization which attracted other people towards them with the desire of imitating them.
88. “Wealth”, possessions, resources and means which help the people like Pharaoh to put into practice all their devices and plans, and the lack of which prevents the standard bearers of the truth from carrying out their plans.
89. As it has already been stated, Prophet Moses (peace be upon him) made this prayer during the last period of his stay in Egypt. When he had shown many signs, one after the other, to Pharaoh and his chiefs and pointed out the way clearly to them, but they had persisted obdurately in their antagonism to the truth. The Prophet begged his Lord to destroy their possessions and harden their hearts. And this was in accordance with the decree of Allah. As they had merited this punishment according to the divine law of retribution, Allah decreed that they should not get the light of faith, which they themselves
had extinguished with their persistent disbelief.
(10:89) Allah responded: ‘The prayer of the two of you is accepted. So keep steadfast, and do not follow the path of the ignorant.”
90. In this verse, Allah has urged Prophet Moses (peace be upon him) and his followers to guard against a common misunderstanding that is likely to arise in such cases. It so happens that those people who have no knowledge of the reality and who do not understand the wisdom of Allah’s ways are liable to believe from the apparent success of His rebels that perhaps it is His will that they should dominate in the world. When they witness the failures of the upholders of the truth in their conflict with falsehood in contrast to the splendor and vast possessions of the champions of falsehood, they begin to think that Allah does not will to help the truth in its conflict with falsehood. Therefore some foolish people further conclude from these wrong suppositions that it is useless to exert for the establishment of the truth. Then they consider it to be the best and most proper thing to rest content with the little religiosity that the sovereignty of falsehood and unbelief allows them.
That is why Allah has urged Prophet Moses (peace be upon him) and his followers to guard against such a misunderstanding and to carry on the mission entrusted to them with patience under the adverse circumstances.
(10:90) And We led the Children of Israel across the sea. Then Pharaoh and his hosts pursued them in iniquity and transgression until Pharaoh cried out while he was drowning: ‘I believe that there is no god but Allah in Whom the Children of Israel believe, and I am also one of those who submit to Allah.
91. The Bible does not mention this happening but the Talmud says explicitly that when he was drowning he said: Who is like Thee, O Lord, among the gods?
(10:91) (Thereupon came the response): ‘Now you believe, although you disobeyed earlier and were one of the mischief-makers.
(10:92) We shall now save your corpse that you may serve as a sign of warning for all posterity,2 although many men are heedless of Our signs.
92. Even today the place, where the dead body of Pharaoh was found floating, is pointed out by the inhabitants of that region. It lies on the western coast of the Sinai Peninsula and is now known by the name of Jabl-i-Firaun (Pharaoh’s Mount). There is also near to it a hot spring called Hammam-i-Firaun (Pharaoh’s Bath), which is situated at a distance of a few miles from Abu Zenimah, where, they say, Pharaoh’s dead body was found lying.
If the Pharaoh who was drowned was Mine Ptah, who ruled over Egypt when Prophet Moses (peace be upon him) was sent to him, his embalmed dead body is still lying in the Cairo Museum. When Sir Grafton E. Smith removed the bandages from his mummy, a layer
of salt was found on the body, which was a clear proof that he was drowned in the sea.
93. That is, We show signs to the people over and over again so that these should serve as warnings and be the means of teaching them lessons, but it is a pity that they do not learn lessons even from such signs as the dead body of Pharaoh.
(10:93)We settled the Children of Israel in a blessed land,24 and provided them with all manner of good things. They only disagreed among themselves after knowledge (of the truth had) come to them. Surely your Lord will judge between them on the Day of Resurrection concerning their disagreements.
94. That is, in Palestine after their exodus from Egypt.
95. This refers to the dissensions the Israelites had caused in the divine way and the new religions they had invented. This verse accuses them of falling into variances, even though they possessed the divine knowledge, which had provided them with the criterion of judging between the right way and the wrong ways. They did this because of mischief of their hearts in spite of the fact that the right way had been made clear to them, and its fundamental principles had been imparted to them and instructions had been given about its implications and demands and its boundaries had been distinctly demarcated from those of the ways of unbelief. Besides, they had been admonished to follow the path of obedience and guard against the paths of disobedience, and establish their lives entirely in accordance with the rules and regulations based on that knowledge, for they shall have to render an account of all they did in this life. But in spite of all the instructions that were given to them, they divided one original religion into many divergent sects and built different ways on foundations other than those laid down by Allah.
(10:94) Now, if you are in doubt concerning what We have revealed to you, then ask those who have been reading the Book before you. It is the truth that has come to you from your Lord, so do never become one of those who doubt,
(10:95) or reject the signs of Allah as false, for then you shall be among those who will be in utter loss.96
96. Though these words were addressed to the Prophet (peace be upon him), they were meant for those who expressed doubts about his message. As regards to the reference to the people of the Book, it is because they possessed the knowledge of the scriptures, whereas
the common people of Arabia lacked this, and were, therefore, strangers to the voice of the Quran. It was also expected that their just and pious scholars would testify that its message was the same as that of the scriptures of the former Prophets.
(10:96) Surely those against whom the word of your Lord has been fulfilled” will not believed
97. Allah’s decree that had become applicable to them was this: Allah does not thrust the faith on those who do not seek after the truth: who obstinately and obdurately shut their hearts against it with prejudice: who are so lost in the love of this world that they do not care at all about the Hereafter.
(10:97) even if they witness every single sign that might come to them until they are face to face with the painful chastisement,
(10:98) Did it ever happen that the people of a town believed on seeing God’s chastisement and its believing profited them? (There is no such instance) except of the people of Yunus.28 When they believed We granted them reprieve from humiliating chastisement in this world,” and We let them enjoy themselves for a while.98
98. Though Prophet Jonah (peace be upon him) 860-784 B.C. was an Israelite Prophet, he was sent to Iraq for the guidance of the Assyrians, who have been called the people of Jonah for this reason. At that time, Nineveh, a very ancient and famous city, was their capital. Its vast remains are scattered on the left bank of the Tigris, opposite to the city of Mosul, and one of the mounds bears the name of Prophet Jonah. In order to form an estimate of the glory of these people, suffice it to say that the circumference of their capital Nineveh was 60 miles or so.
99. As regards to the question why the threatened torment was warded off from the people of Jonah as an exception to the divine principle, “Why was there not a (single) township (among those We warned) that believed so its belief benefited it,” the Quran does not give any details of this, but merely refers to the story at three places. See (Surah Al-Anbia, Ayats 87, 88); (Surah As-Sajadah, Ayats 139-148); (Surah Al-Qalam, Ayats 48-50). Though the story contained in the Book of Jonah gives some details, these cannot be depended upon because
it was neither composed by Prophet Jonah nor it is a revealed Book but was written by some unknown person and then inserted in the Bible. Besides this, it contains some apparently absurd things which cannot be accepted as true. Nevertheless if we consider this deeply in
the light of the allusions made in the Quran and details in the Book of Jonah, the explanation given by various commentators of the Quran seems to be correct. Prophet Jonah left the place of his mission without divine permission after warning the people of the torment.
Therefore Allah forgave the Assyrians when they repented after seeing some signs of the coming torment. This was in accordance with the divine principles as stated in the Quran.
For, according to one of these, Allah does not inflict any torment on any people, till He has the message fully demonstrated to them. As the Prophet did not continue his admonition in accordance with the appointed term and left the place of his mission of his own accord,
Allah’s justice did not inflict the chastisement because the legal argument against his people had not been fulfilled. For further explanation see (E.N. 85 of Surah Yaseen).
100. When the Assyrians believed in the message, they were given a new lease of life. But after some time, they adopted the wrong ways of thought and deed. Prophet Nahum (720- 698 B.C.) warned and admonished them but without any effect. Then Prophet Zephaniah
(640-609 B.C.) gave them the last warning that “He …. will destroy Assyria and will make Nineveh a desolation”, but it also proved in vain. At last in about 612 B.C. Allah made the Medes dominant over them.
The Median king, with the help of the Babylonians, invaded Assyria, and their army was defeated and was besieged within the walls of Nineveh. They put up a stiff resistance for some time but then the floods in the Tigris swept away the city wall and the invaders swarmed into the city and burnt it to ashes along with the surrounding countryside. The Assyrian king set fire to his palace and was himself burnt to death. Thus the Assyrian Empire and its culture came to an end forever. The recent archaeological excavations reveal widespread effects of the fire.
(10:99) Had your Lord so willed, all those who are on the earth would have believed.102 Will you, then, force people into believing?102
101. This refers to the freedom that Allah has granted to mankind to believe or not to believe in Him. Otherwise He could have very easily created all the people as born believers and obedient servants and there would have been no disbelief and disobedience at all on the
earth. Or He could have very easily inspired them to turn towards belief and obedience. But these methods would have defeated the wisdom that underlies the creation of mankind.
102. This does not at all mean that the Prophet (peace be upon him) desired to force people to become believers, and that Allah was forbidding him to do this. In fact, the Quran has here adopted the same method of admonishing the people that it has adopted at many other places, that is, though the words have apparently been addressed to the person of the Prophet (peace be upon him), in fact, these have been addressed to the people. The implication is this: “O people! Our Messenger has made the distinction between the guidance and deviation quite clear and plain by argument and pleading. Now, therefore, it is for you to believe or not to believe in the guidance. If you accept that someone should force you to adopt the right way, you should know that this duty has not been assigned to Our Prophet. Had Allah willed this, He could have done it Himself: then there would have been no need of sending any Prophet to you.
(10:100) No one can believe except by Allah’s leave,103 and Allah lays abomination on those who do not use their understanding. and conduct.104
103. This is to emphasize the principle that the bestowal of all these blessings is in the power of Allah alone: therefore none can acquire or bestow on anyone any blessing without the permission of Allah. As faith and guidance are also blessings, they, too, can be acquired only with Allah’s permission; and no one can acquire these without His permission nor bestow these on anyone else even though one should desire to do so. That is why, even if the Prophet had sincerely desired to make people believers forcibly, he could not have done this, for this could be done only with Allah’s permission and help.
104. This points out clearly that the above principle is not applied blindly and irrationally so as to bestow the blessing of faith on or withhold it from anyone without any rhyme or reason, but it works according to a system which is based on wisdom. Allah bestows this on
anyone who uses his common sense properly in search of the truth, for Allah provides for such a one the means of attaining it in proportion to the sincerity of his intention and the extent of his exertion and grants him its correct knowledge required for faith. But He throws the filth of ignorance, deviation, wrong thinking and wrong doing on the one who is not a seeker after the truth and does not use his common sense properly because of his prejudices, or does not use it at all in search of the truth. And this is what such people deserve.
(10:101) Tell them: ‘Observe carefully all that is in the heavens and the earth.’ But no signs and warnings can avail those who are bent on not believing .105
105. This is the answer to the condition that they would believe him to be a true Prophet, if a sign would be shown to them. The Prophet (peace be upon him) has been asked to say to them: There are countless signs in the heaven and the earth, which confirm and testify the message I am giving you. You could have easily recognized them, had you observed and considered them with open eyes and open hearts. But if you lack this urge and desire for the truth, you will not accept and acknowledge it, however wonderful, miraculous and
supernatural the sign may be, for you will declare that it was a piece of sorcery like Pharaoh and his chiefs. The fact is that the people, who suffer from this malady, see the truth only when the torment with all its horrors overtakes them, just as Pharaoh came to believe only when he was drowning. But you should note it well that the repentance at the time of punishment is of no avail.
(10:102) What are they waiting for except to witness the repetition of the days of calamity that their predecessors witnessed? Tell them: ‘Wait; I too am waiting with you.
(10:103) Then, (when Allah’s oe falls upon the wicked) We save our Messengers and also those who believe. It is incumbent on Us to deliver the believers.
(10:104) (O Prophet!) Tell them:1% ‘Men! If you are still in doubt concerning my religion, know that I do not serve those whom you serve beside Allah. I only serve Allah Who will cause (all of) you to die. I have been commanded to be one of those who believe,
106. In this concluding portion, the same thing that was stated at the beginning of the discourse, has been reiterated. Therefore it will be worthwhile to keep in view the introductory passage (Ayats 1-10).
107. The Arabic word yatawaffa-kum literally means “gives you death”, but it has been purposely translated into “who causes you to die” in order to convey its real spirit in the content it occurs. It implies this: I worship only that One, who has full power over your life:
He has complete authority and power to let you live as long as He wills and cause you to die at any moment He wills. That is why I am fully convinced that I should submit and surrender, worship, serve and obey Him alone.
Now let us consider why of all His characteristics, this quality of Allah was specifically cited here. This was to bring home to the mushriks of Makkah that the doctrine of shirk was absolutely false. For they also believed (and all the mushriks have always believed) that
death is entirely in the hands of Allah, the Lord of the universe, and none else has any power over it; so much so that they confessed that even those beings, whom they believed to be partners with God in other qualities and powers of, His, could not avert death even from
themselves. Thus the mention of this quality of Allah along with the statement of the doctrine of Tauhid has been made to serve as a proof of that creed. That is, I serve only Him for He alone has the full power over life and death. Why should, then, I serve others who have no power at all over their own lives and deaths, not to mention the lives and deaths of others? The eloquence and force of the statement has been enhanced manifold by saying, “Who gives you death” instead of “Who gives me death”. For this contains the statement of the doctrine, its proof and invitation to it, all the three combined in one concise sentence.
Had it been said, “I serve that one Who gives me death” then it would have implied, “I alone should serve Him.” But by saying, “Who gives you death” the implication is: It is not only I, who should serve Him, but you also should serve Him. For it is absolutely wrong to serve any other than Allah, Who alone has such powers.
(10:105) and to adhere exclusively and sincerely to the true faith,108 and not to be one of those who associate others with Allah in His divinity.109
108. The force of the Arabic words “direct your face toward the religion” of the text means “dedicate yourself sincerely, exclusively and steadfastly to this faith’, is worth deep consideration. The purpose might have been served by the use of such words as “ Adopt this faith” or “Follow this faith’. But Allah considered such expressions as weak and incapable of serving the real purpose, which is implied in the wording of the text. For the literal meaning is “Set your face steadfastly”, which implies: You should steadfastly turn your face
in one direction only, without turning it even slightly to right or left, or backward, and go on marching in the same direction. Though these words were in themselves quite sufficient, the addition of the word made it all the more forceful. For hanif is one who turns away from
all others and exclusively turns to one direction. Thus what Allah demands is this: Adopt this faith, this way of the worship of Allah and this way of life in such a manner that your worship, subjection, submission, servitude and obedience should be dedicated exclusively
to Allah, the Lord of the universe, so that you do not deviate in the least after adopting this way. You should have nothing to do with those ways that you have discarded and that you should not even have a look at the crooked paths that erroneous people follow.
109. This negative way of forbidding from shirk has been purposely adopted. It implies this:
You should not at all be one of those, who set up in any way whatsoever other gods as partners with Allah in His essence, His attributes, His rights and His powers, whether that god be one’s own self or another man or a group of men or some spirit or jinn or angel or some material or imaginary being. The demand of Tauhid has been made both in the positive form, “Dedicate…. faith”, and in the negative form, “and do not be of those who associate partners (to Allah).” Thus it forbids shirk both in deed and in creed, in individual and in collective life, in places of worship and in education, in courts and in legislative
assemblies, in political and in economic activities. Therefore it demands from the worshiper of Tauhid to adopt a different way in every aspect of life from the way of those who adulterate God worship with ungodly worships, for the former can never be a fellow traveler
with those who practice shirk. As such things can never be expected from him, it can never be imagined that he would follow them.
Thus it is clear that it cuts at the very root of shirk, both jali (open) and khafi (hidden). As a matter of fact, shirk in its latter form is even more dangerous and should therefore be avoided most scrupulously. This warning is necessary, as some foolish people consider it to be almost harmless just because it is hidden. The fact is that open shirk is like an avowed enemy who makes an attack in the open and hidden shirk is like an enemy in the guise of a friend. Or the former is like a disease of which the symptoms are quite apparent and the latter like the hidden disease that gradually undermines one’s health. Thus it is obvious that
when the open shirk comes into conflict with the faith of Tauhid, it may be cured. But the one who suffers from the hidden shirk does not realize the threat posed by it and slowly and gradually succumbs to it, while the victim remains quite unaware that his faith is being devoured by the deadly secret enemy.
(10:106) Do not call upon any apart from Allah on those who have no power to benefit or hurt you. For if you call upon others than Allah you will be reckoned among the wrong-doers.
(10:107) If Allah afflicts you with any hardship, none other than He can remove it; and if He wills any good for you, none can avert His bounty. He bestows good upon whomsoever of His servants He wills. is All Forgiving, All-Merciful.’
(10:108) Tell them (O Muhammad): ‘Men! Truth has come to you from your Lord. Whosoever, then, follows the true guidance does so for his own good; and whosoever strays, his straying will be to his own hurt. I am no custodian over you.
(10:109) And follow, (O Prophet!), whatever is revealed to you, and remain patient until Allah brings forth His judgement. He is the best of those who judge.’