The tafsir of ibn Kathir has been widely praised for it’s upright methodology and adherence to authentic statements in explaining the Speech of Allah. In the midst of discussing some of the ayaat at the beginning of surah al-Isra, specifically those that mention the Banu Israa’eel‘s defeat in previous times by an unidentified enemy, Ibn Kathir begins by presenting the differing views of the mufassiroon on this enemy’s identity, and then he makes the following point:
وقد وردت في هذا آثار كثيرة إسرائيلية لم أر تطويل الكتاب بذكرها؛ لأن منها ما هو موضوع، من وضع بعض زنادقتهم، ومنها ما قد يحتمل أن يكون صحيحًا، ونحن في غُنْيَة عنها، ولله الحمد. وفيما قص الله تعالى علينا في كتابه غنية عما سواه من بقية الكتب قبله، ولم يحوجنا الله ولا رسوله إليهم. وقد أخبر الله تعالى أنهم لما بغوا وطغوا سلط الله عليهم عدوهم، فاستباح بَيْضَتَهم، وسلك خلال بيوتهم وأذلهم وقهرهم، جزاء وفاقًا، وما ربك بظلام للعبيد؛ فإنهم كانوا قد تمردوا وقتلوا خلقا من الأنبياء والعلماء.
Many reports from Jewish sources were narrated about this, but I did not want to make this book too long by mentioning them, because some of them are fabricated, concocted by their heretics, and it is possible that some of them are accurate, but we have no need of them, alhamdulillaah. What Allah the Exalted has told us in His Book is sufficient and we have no need of what is in the other books that came before. And neither Allah nor His Messenger required us to refer to them. Allah informed us that when they [the Banu Israa’eel] committed transgression and aggression, Allah gave their enemies power over them, to destroy their country and enter the innermost parts of their homes, and to humiliate them and subject; a befitting punishment. And your Lord is never unfair or unjust to His servants, for they had rebelled and killed many of the Prophets and scholars.
[Tafsir ibn Kathir 5/47]