Assorted Qur’an Benefits #55

What follows is a collection of short benefits from the books of tafsir originally posted of the Tulayhah Facebook and Telegram channels during December 2020:

♦ An Ayah is Like a Date

In part of his famous handbook of the Qur’anic sciences, Badr al-Deen al-Zarkashi mentioned the following statement:

 وقال بشر بن السري : إنما الآية مثل التمرة كلما مضغتها استخرجت حلاوتها

Bishr ibn al-Sarri said, “An ayah is like a date; the more you chew it the more its sweetness comes out.”

[al-Burhan fee ‘Uloom al-Qur’an 2/102]

♦ Be Just, O Son of Adam,

Allah says in surah al-Rahman:

وَوَضَعَ الْمِيزَانَ * أَلَّا تَطْغَوْا فِي الْمِيزَانِ

… and He set up the balance * so that you would not transgress the balance. [55:7-8]

Commenting on this in his book of tafsir, Imam Muhammad ibn Jarir al-Tabari mentioned the following narration:

 كما حدثنا بشر قال : ثنا يزيد قال : ثنا سعيد ، عن قتادة قوله : ( ألا تطغوا في الميزان ) : اعدل يا ابن آدم كما تحب أن يعدل عليك ، وأوف كما تحب أن يوفى لك ، فإن بالعدل صلاح الناس . ـ

… Regarding this ayah, Qatadah said, “Be just, O son of Adam, just as you would like for others to be just towards you. And fulfill your promises just as you would like for others to fulfill their promises to you, for the uprightness of mankind comes through being just.”

[Tafsir al-Tabari 23/14]

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Tafsir of Surah al-Bayyinah: al-Tafsir al-Muyassar

The book Al-Tafsir al-Muyassar was written by a group of scholars under the direction of sheikh Saalih Aal al-Sheikh, Minister of Islamic Affairs for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. It was designed to be a simple and easy-to-understand tafsir according to the understanding of the salaf. What follows is its brief tafsir of surah al-Bayyinah (98) and translation:

{لَمْ يَكُنْ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا مِنْ أَهْلِ الْكِتَابِ وَالْمُشْرِكِينَ مُنفَكِّينَ حَتَّى تَأْتِيَهُمْ الْبَيِّنَةُ (1)}ـ
لم يكن الذين كفروا من اليهود والنصارى والمشركين تاركين كفرهم حتى تأتيهم العلامة التي وُعِدوا بها في الكتب السابقة. ـ

لَمْ يَكُنْ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا مِنْ أَهْلِ الْكِتَابِ وَالْمُشْرِكِينَ مُنفَكِّينَ حَتَّى تَأْتِيَهُمْ الْبَيِّنَةُ

Those of the People of the Book and the polytheists who disbelieved were not going to stop until clear evidence came to them – (1)

Those of the Jews, Christians and polytheists who disbelieved were not going to leave their disbelief until a sign which they had been promised in the previous scriptures came to them

ـ {رَسُولٌ مِنْ اللَّهِ يَتْلُوا صُحُفًا مُطَهَّرَةً (2)}
وهي رسول الله محمد صلى الله عليه وسلم، يتلو قرآنًا في صحف مطهرة. ـ

رَسُولٌ مِنْ اللَّهِ يَتْلُوا صُحُفًا مُطَهَّرَةً

A messenger from Allah reciting purified pages (2)

And that was the Messenger of Allah, Muhammad (ﷺ), reciting the Qur’an which was in purified pages.

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The Parable of the Sahabah in the Injeel: Tafsir al-Sa’di

Allah concludes surah al-Fath by saying:

مُّحَمَّدٌ رَّسُولُ اللَّهِ ۚ وَالَّذِينَ مَعَهُ أَشِدَّاءُ عَلَى الْكُفَّارِ رُحَمَاءُ بَيْنَهُمْ ۖ تَرَاهُمْ رُكَّعًا سُجَّدًا يَبْتَغُونَ فَضْلًا مِّنَ اللَّهِ وَرِضْوَانًا ۖ سِيمَاهُمْ فِي وُجُوهِهِم مِّنْ أَثَرِ السُّجُودِ ۚ ذَٰلِكَ مَثَلُهُمْ فِي التَّوْرَاةِ ۚ وَمَثَلُهُمْ فِي الْإِنجِيلِ كَزَرْعٍ أَخْرَجَ شَطْأَهُ فَآزَرَهُ فَاسْتَغْلَظَ فَاسْتَوَىٰ عَلَىٰ سُوقِهِ يُعْجِبُ الزُّرَّاعَ لِيَغِيظَ بِهِمُ الْكُفَّارَ ۗ وَعَدَ اللَّهُ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ مِنْهُم مَّغْفِرَةً وَأَجْرًا عَظِيمًا

Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah. And those with him are stern toward the disbelievers, merciful among themselves. You see them bowing and prostrating, seeking bounty from Allah and His pleasure. Their sign is on their faces from the traces of prostration. That is their description in the Tawrah. And their description in the Injeel is like a plant which produces its offshoots and strengthens them so that they grow firm and stand up on their stalks, delighting the farmers – so that He may enrage the disbelievers with them. Allah has promised those of them who believe and do righteous deeds forgiveness and a great reward. [48:29]

In the midst of this ayah, Allah struck the parable:

وَمَثَلُهُمْ فِي الْإِنجِيلِ كَزَرْعٍ أَخْرَجَ شَطْأَهُ فَآزَرَهُ فَاسْتَغْلَظَ فَاسْتَوَىٰ عَلَىٰ سُوقِهِ يُعْجِبُ الزُّرَّاعَ لِيَغِيظَ بِهِمُ الْكُفَّارَ

And their description in the Injeel is like a plant which produces its offshoots and strengthens them so that they grow firm and stand up on their stalks, delighting the farmers – so that He may enrage the disbelievers with them.

In his book of tafsir, Imam al-Baghawi briefly summarized the meaning of this parable by writing:

هذا مثل ضربه الله – عز وجل – لأصحاب محمد – صلى الله عليه وسلم – في الإنجيل [ أنهم يكونون قليلا ثم يزدادون ويكثرون . قال قتادة : مثل أصحاب رسول الله – صلى الله عليه وسلم – في الإنجيل ] مكتوب أنه سيخرج قوم ينبتون نبات الزرع يأمرون بالمعروف وينهون عن المنكر . ـ

This is a parable that Allah struck regarding the companions of Muhammad in the Injeel. It describes them as being few in number, then growing and increasing.

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Practices to Retain and Strengthen Your Memorization of the Qur’an: Sheikh ‘Abd al-Qadir al-Junayd

Sheikh ‘Abd al-Qadir al-Junayd wrote the following pieces of advice regarding memorizing the Qur’an:

الأمور المعينة على بقاء المحفوظ من القرآن وثباته والتخفيف من نسيانه
Helpful Practices For Retaining and Strengthening What One Has Memorized of the Qur’an While Minimizing Loss

الحمد لله وسلام على عباده الذين اصطفى. وبعد: فدونك يا حافظ القرآن العزيز أو بعضه هذه الأمور المعينة لك على بقاء محفوظك، وثباته، وتخفف عنك من نسيانه: ـ

All praise is due to Allah, and may He send His blessings on His chosen servant.

To proceed: For the person who has memorized the Qur’an or a portion of it, below are some practices which will help you to retain and strengthen what you have memorized and minimize what you forget.

الأمر الأول: تعاهده بالإكثار من تلاوته في الصلاة، في الفرائض، والسنن الرواتب، وفي قيام الليل، وفي وصلاة الضحى، مع التنويع في سوره ومقاطعه. ـ

The First Practice: Maintaining your share of the Qur’an by frequently reciting what you have memorized in your prayers: in the obligatory prayers, the sunan al-rawatib prayers, the night prayers, and the dhuhaa prayer while also cycling through the different surahs and passages that you have memorized.

الأمر الثاني: تعاهده بترك الذنوب والمعاصي. وقد ثبت عن الضحاك بن مزاحم – رحمه الله – أنه قال: (( ما من أحدٍ تعلَّم القرآن ثم نَسِيَه إلاَّ بذنبٍ يُحدثه؛ لأنَّ الله تعالى يقول: { وَمَا أَصَابَكُمْ مِنْ مُصِيبَةٍ فَبِمَا كَسَبَتْ أَيْدِيكُمْ }، وإن نسيان القرآن من أعظم المصائب ))([1]). ـ

The Second Practice: Maintaining your share of the Qur’an by leaving off sins and acts of disobedience. It has been authentically relayed from al-Dhahhak ibn Muzahim that he said:

Whoever learns the Qur’an and then forgets it, that is only because of a sin that he committed. That is because Allah says:

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Tafsir of Surah al-Qadr: al-Tafsir al-Muyassar

The book Al-Tafsir al-Muyassar was written by a group of scholars under the direction of sheikh Saalih Aal al-Sheikh, Minister of Islamic Affairs for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. It was designed to be a simple and easy-to-understand tafsir according to the understanding of the salaf. What follows is its brief tafsir of surah al-Qadr (97) and translation:

ـ {إِنَّا أَنزَلْنَاهُ فِي لَيْلَةِ الْقَدْرِ (1)}
إنا أنزلنا القرآن في ليلة الشرف والفضل، وهي إحدى ليالي شهر رمضان. ـ

إِنَّا أَنزَلْنَاهُ فِي لَيْلَةِ الْقَدْرِ

We sent it down during the Night of al-Qadr (1)

We sent the Qur’an down during a noble and virtuous night, on one of the nights of the month of Ramadan.

ـ {وَمَا أَدْرَاكَ مَا لَيْلَةُ الْقَدْرِ (2)}
وما أدراك- أيها النبي- ما ليلة القدر والشرف؟ ـ

وَمَا أَدْرَاكَ مَا لَيْلَةُ الْقَدْرِ

And what will make you know what the Night of al-Qadr is? (2)

And what will make you – O Prophet – know what the Night of al-Qadr and its noble status is?

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Fearing Allah: Tafsir al-Qurtubi

Allah says in surah Aal ‘Imran:

إِنَّمَا ذَٰلِكُمُ الشَّيْطَانُ يُخَوِّفُ أَوْلِيَاءَهُ فَلَا تَخَافُوهُمْ وَخَافُونِ إِن كُنتُم مُّؤْمِنِينَ

It is only the shaytaan who instills in you fear of his allies, so do not fear them but fear Me in you are truly believers. [3:175]

In part of his commentary on this ayah, al-Qurtubi wrote:

فالخائف من الله تعالى هو أن يخاف أن يعاقبه إما في الدنيا وإما في الآخرة ; ولهذا قيل : ليس الخائف الذي يبكي ويمسح عينيه ، بل الخائف الذي يترك ما يخاف أن يعذب عليه . ففرض الله تعالى على العباد أن يخافوه فقال : وخافون إن كنتم مؤمنين وقال : وإياي فارهبون . ومدح المؤمنين بالخوف فقال : يخافون ربهم من فوقهم . ـ

The one who fears Allah is one who fears that Allah will punish Him either in this life or the next. That is why some say, “The fearful person isn’t the one who cries and wipes his eyes; the fearful person is the one who stops doing what he fears he would be punished for.”

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Definition of al-Iltifat in the Qur’an: Sheikh Muhammad Bazmool

In part of his doctoral thesis on the qiraa’aat and their impacts on tafsir and legal rulings, sheikh Muhammad Bazmool (current judge of Mecca and professor at Umm al-Qura University) included the following section:

الاتفات : هو التعبير عن معنى بأسلوب التكلم أو الخطاب أو الغيبة ، وذلك بعد التعبير عن المعنى بأسلوب آخر منها . ـ

al-Iltifat refers to: initially expressing a message with a first person, second person or third person point of view, and subsequently expressing the message with a different grammatical point of view.

أو هو الانتقال من التكلم أو الخطاب أو الغيبة إلى صاحبه . ـ

It could also be defined as: a switch between first person, second person, and third person grammatical points of view.

والعرب تنتقل في كلامها من أسلوب إلى أسلوب ، وذلك على عادة افتنانهم في الكلام وتصرفهم فيه ، ولأن الكلام إذا نقل من أسلوب ألى أسلوب كان ذلك أحسن ، تطرية لنشاط السامع ، وإيقاظ للاصغاء إليه من إجرائة على أسلوب واحد ، وهذه فائدة الاتفات العامة ، وقد تختص مواقعه بفوائد . ـ

In their discourse, Arabs switch from one grammatical point of view to another; that is a standard part of their eloquent speech and how they speak in a skillful manner. That is because when someone’s speech shifts from one grammatical point of view to another it becomes more enjoyable, more conducive to retaining the listener’s focus, and more likely to catch the person’s attention than if one were to simply maintain a single grammatical point of view throughout.

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Tafsir of Surah al-‘Alaq: al-Tafsir al-Muyassar

The book Al-Tafsir al-Muyassar was written by a group of scholars under the direction of sheikh Saalih Aal al-Sheikh, Minister of Islamic Affairs for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. It was designed to be a simple and easy-to-understand tafsir according to the understanding of the salaf. What follows is its brief tafsir of surah al-‘Alaq (96) and translation:

ـ {اقْرَأْ بِاسْمِ رَبِّكَ الَّذِي خَلَقَ (1) خَلَقَ الإِنسَانَ مِنْ عَلَقٍ (2) اقْرَأْ وَرَبُّكَ الأَكْرَمُ (3) الَّذِي عَلَّمَ بِالْقَلَمِ (4) عَلَّمَ الإِنسَانَ مَا لَمْ يَعْلَمْ (5)}
اقرأ- أيها النبي- ما أُنزل إليك من القرآن مُفْتَتِحًا باسم ربك المتفرد بالخلق، الذي خلق كل إنسان من قطعة دم غليظ أحمر. اقرأ- أيها النبي- ما أُنزل إليك، وإن ربك لكثير الإحسان واسع الجود، الذي علَّم خلقه الكتابة بالقلم، علَّم الإنسان ما لم يكن يعلم، ونقله من ظلمة الجهل إلى نور العلم. ـ

اقْرَأْ بِاسْمِ رَبِّكَ الَّذِي خَلَقَ * خَلَقَ الإِنسَانَ مِنْ عَلَقٍ * اقْرَأْ وَرَبُّكَ الأَكْرَمُ * الَّذِي عَلَّمَ بِالْقَلَمِ * عَلَّمَ الإِنسَانَ مَا لَمْ يَعْلَمْ

Recite in the name of your Lord who created – (1) Created man from a clinging substance. (2) Recite, and your Lord is the most Generous – (3) Who taught by the pen – (4) Taught man what he knew not. (5)

Recite – O Prophet – the Qur’an that has been revealed to you, beginning with the name of your Lord, the sole Creator. He is the One who created every human being from bits of thick red blood. Recite – O Prophet – what has been revealed to you, and your Lord is certainly full of good and exceptionally generous. He is the One who taught His creation how to write with the pen. He taught mankind what they did not know before and took them out of the darkness of ignorance into the light of knowledge.

ـ {كَلاَّ إِنَّ الإِنسَانَ لَيَطْغَى (6) أَنْ رَآهُ اسْتَغْنَى (7) إِنَّ إِلَى رَبِّكَ الرُّجْعَى (8)}
حقًا إن الإنسان ليتجاوز حدود الله إذا أبطره الغنى، فليعلم كل طاغية أن المصير إلى الله، فيجازي كلَّ إنسان بعمله. ـ

كَلاَّ إِنَّ الإِنسَانَ لَيَطْغَى * أَنْ رَآهُ اسْتَغْنَى * إِنَّ إِلَى رَبِّكَ الرُّجْعَى

But man certainly transgresses (6) because he sees himself as self-sufficient. (7) The return is certainly to your Lord. (8)

The reality is that man crosses the limits set by Allah when his wealth makes him ungrateful. So let every transgressor know that the ultimate destination is to return to Allah, at which point He will repay every person for their deeds.

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Were There Jinn Prophets?: Tafsir al-Baghawi

Allah mentions in surah al-An’aam:

يَا مَعْشَرَ الْجِنِّ وَالْإِنسِ أَلَمْ يَأْتِكُمْ رُسُلٌ مِّنكُمْ يَقُصُّونَ عَلَيْكُمْ آيَاتِي وَيُنذِرُونَكُمْ لِقَاءَ يَوْمِكُمْ هَٰذَا ۚ قَالُوا شَهِدْنَا عَلَىٰ أَنفُسِنَا ۖ وَغَرَّتْهُمُ الْحَيَاةُ الدُّنْيَا وَشَهِدُوا عَلَىٰ أَنفُسِهِمْ أَنَّهُمْ كَانُوا كَافِرِينَ

“O group of jinn and people, didn’t messengers from your own kind come to you relating My verses to you and warning you of the meeting of this Day of yours?” They will say, “We bear witness against ourselves”; and the worldly life had deluded them, and they will bear witness against themselves that they were disbelievers. [6:130]

Commenting on this, the famous scholar of tafsir Abu Muhammad al-Husayn al-Baghawi wrote:

قوله – عز وجل – : ( يا معشر الجن والإنس ألم يأتكم رسل منكم ) اختلفوا في أن الجن هل أرسل إليهم منهم رسول ؟ فسئل الضحاك عنه ، فقال : بلى ألم تسمع الله يقول ( ألم يأتكم رسل منكم ) يعني بذلك رسلا من الإنس ورسلا من الجن . قال الكلبي : كانت الرسل من قبل أن يبعث محمد – صلى الله عليه وسلم – يبعثون إلى الجن وإلى الإنس جميعا . ـ

Regarding Allah’s statement:

يَا مَعْشَرَ الْجِنِّ وَالْإِنسِ أَلَمْ يَأْتِكُمْ رُسُلٌ مِّنكُمْ

O group of jinn and people, didn’t messengers from your own kind come to you?

The scholars have differed as to whether or not the jinn had any messengers of their own kind sent to them.

[Those who held that there were jinn messengers and their evidence]

al-Dhahhaak was asked about this and he said:

Of course, haven’t you heard Allah saying

أَلَمْ يَأْتِكُمْ رُسُلٌ مِّنكُمْ

… didn’t messengers from your own kind come to you?

which he understood to mean human messengers and jinn messengers.

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On Numerology and Numeric Miracles in the Qur’an: al-Suyooti

In part of his famous handbook to the Qur’anic sciences, Jalal al-Deen al-Suyooti wrote:

قال الخويي : وقد استخرج بعض الأئمة من قوله تعالى : الم غلبت الروم [ الروم : 1 – 2 ] أن البيت المقدس تفتحه المسلمون في سنة ثلاثة وثمانين وخمسمائة ، ووقع كما قاله . وقال السهيلي : لعل عدد الحروف التي في أوائل السور – مع حذف المكرر – للإشارة إلى مدة بقاء هذه الأمة . ـ

al-Khuwayyi said: Regarding Allah’s statement:

ألم * غُلِبَتِ الرُّومُ

Alif Laam Meem * The Romans have been defeated [30:1-2]

Some scholars extracted from this that Jerusalem would be conquered by the Muslims in the year 583, and that is indeed what happened.[1]

And al-Suhayli said: Perhaps the number of the letters found at the beginnings of the surahs – minus those that are repeated – indicates the length of time that this Ummah will endure.

قال ابن حجر : وهذا باطل لا يعتمد عليه ، فقد ثبت عن ابن عباس – رضي الله عنه – الزجر عن عد أبي جاد . والإشارة إلى أن ذلك من جملة السحر ، وليس ذلك ببعيد ، فإنه لا أصل له في الشريعة ، وقد قال القاضي أبو بكر بن العربي في فوائد رحلته : ومن الباطل علم الحروف المقطعة في أوائل السور . وقد تحصل لي فيها عشرون قولا وأزيد ، ولا أعرف أحدا يحكم عليها بعلم ولا يصل منها إلى فهم . ـ

Ibn Hajr said:

This is false and should not be taken seriously, for it has been authentically transmitted from ibn ‘Abbaas that he warned against numerology and implied that it is a form of magic. And that is not far-fetched as numerology has no basis in the sharee’ah. When discussing some of the benefits of his travels, al-Qadhi Abu Bakr ibn al-‘Arabi said, “The numerological study of the disconnected letters at the beginnings of the surahs falls under the category of falsehood.”

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