Banu Israa’eel’s abuse of Moosaa: Tafsir al-Shinqitee

Imam Muhammad al-Ameen al-Shinqitee wrote the following in his tafsir of surah al-Saff:

قوله تعالى : وإذ قال موسى لقومه ياقوم لم تؤذونني وقد تعلمون أني رسول الله إليكم فلما زاغوا أزاغ الله قلوبهم والله لا يهدي القوم الفاسقين . ـ

Allah’s statement [in surah al-Saff]:

وَإِذْ قَالَ مُوسَىٰ لِقَوْمِهِ يَا قَوْمِ لِمَ تُؤْذُونَنِي وَقَد تَّعْلَمُونَ أَنِّي رَ‌سُولُ اللَّـهِ إِلَيْكُمْ ۖ فَلَمَّا زَاغُوا أَزَاغَ اللَّـهُ قُلُوبَهُمْ ۚ وَاللَّـهُ لَا يَهْدِي الْقَوْمَ الْفَاسِقِينَ

And (remember) when Moosaa said to his people, “O my people, why do you abuse me while you certainly know that I am the messenger of Allah to you?” And when they deviated, Allah caused their hearts to deviate. And Allah does not guide the defiantly disobedient people. [61:5]

قول موسى عليه السلام : لم تؤذونني ؟ لم يبين نوع هذا الإيذاء وقد جاء مثل هذا الإجمال في قوله تعالى : ياأيها الذين آمنوا لا تكونوا كالذين آذوا موسى فبرأه الله مما قالوا [ 33 \ 69 ] . ـ

Regarding the statement of Moosaa (‘alaihi al-salaam), “why do you abuse me?” Allah does not explain what type of harm this is, and the likes of this general language have also come in His statement [in surah al-Ahzaab]:

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا لَا تَكُونُوا كَالَّذِينَ آذَوْا مُوسَىٰ فَبَرَّ‌أَهُ اللَّـهُ مِمَّا قَالُوا

O you who have believed, do not be like those who abused Moosaa; then Allah cleared him of what they said [33:69]

وأحال عليه ابن كثير في تفسيره ، وساق حديث البخاري أنه – صلى الله عليه وسلم – قال : ” إن موسى – عليه السلام – كان حييا ستيرا لا يرى من جلده شيئا استحياء منه فآذاه من آذاه من بني إسرائيل ، فقالوا : ما يتستر هذا التستر إلا من عيب في جلده ، إما برص وإما أدرة وإما آفة ، وأن الله – عز وجل – أراد أن يبرئه مما قالوا فخلا يوما وحده فخلع ثيابه على حجر ، ثم اغتسل فلما فرغ أقبل على ثيابه ؛ ليأخذها ، وأن الحجر عدا بثوبه ، فأخذ موسى عصاه وطلب الحجر ، فجعل يقول : ثوبي حجر حتى انتهى إلى ملأ من بني إسرائيل فرأوه عريانا أحسن ما خلق الله – عز وجل – وبرأه مما يقولون ” . . . . إلى آخر القصة . ـ

And regarding this, Ibn Kathir presented the following in his tafsir, transmitting the hadeeth of al-Bukhari that the Prophet (ﷺ) said:

Moosaa was a modest person and he used to cover his body completely because of his extensive modesty. One of the Banu Israa’eel abused him by saying, ‘He covers his body in this way only because of some defect in his skin, either leprosy or scrotal hernia, or he has some other defect.’ Allah wished to clear Moosaa of what they said about him, so one day while Moosaa was in seclusion, he took off his clothes and put them on a stone and started taking a bath. When he had finished the bath, he moved towards his clothes so as to take them, but the stone took his clothes and fled; Moosaa picked up his stick and ran after the stone saying, ‘O stone! Give me my garment!’ until he reached a group of Banu Israa’eel who saw him naked then, and found him the best of what Allah had created, and Allah cleared him of what they had accused him of…

…until the end of the story.

ونقله غيره من المفسرين عندها ، وعلى هذا يكون إيذاؤهم إياه إيذاء شخصيا بادعاء العيب فيه خلقة ، وهذا وإن صح في آية الأحزاب لقوله تعالى : فبرأه الله مما قالوا [ 33 \ 69 ] ، فإنه لا يصح في آية ” الصف ” هذه لأن قوله لهم : وقد تعلمون أني رسول الله إليكم [ 61 \ 5 ] مما يثير إلى أن الإيذاء في جانب الرسالة لا في جانبه الشخصي ، ويرشح له قوله تعالى بعده مباشرة : فلما زاغوا أزاغ الله قلوبهم [ 61 \ 5 ] . ـ

And others from amongst the mufassiroon also narrated that in their books, and according to this, their abusing him was personal insults by way of alleging deficiencies in his physical form. And if this is true in regards to the ayah of surah al-Ahzaab due to Allah’s statement, “then Allah cleared him of what they said” [33:69], then it is not correct in regards to this ayah of surah al-Saff due to his statement to them:

وَقَد تَّعْلَمُونَ أَنِّي رَ‌سُولُ اللَّـهِ إِلَيْكُمْ

and you certainly know that I am the messenger of Allah to you [61:5]

which indicates that the abuse was in relation to the messengership, not a personal attach. And His following statement makes this absolutely crystal clear:

فَلَمَّا زَاغُوا أَزَاغَ اللَّـهُ قُلُوبَهُمْ

And when they deviated, Allah caused their hearts to deviate [61:5]

أي : فلما زاغوا بما آذوا به موسى ، فيكون إيذاء قومه له هنا إيذاء زيغ وضلال ، وقد آذوه كثيرا في ذلك كما بينه تعالى في قوله عنهم : وإذ قلتم ياموسى لن نؤمن لك حتى نرى الله جهرة [ 2 \ 55 ] . ـ

Meaning – so they deviated by way of that with which they abused Moosaa, so the abuse of his people towards him was an abuse of deviation and misguidance. And they had abused him often in that manner, just as Allah clarified in His statement regarding them:

وَإِذْ قُلْتُمْ يَا مُوسَىٰ لَن نُّؤْمِنَ لَكَ حَتَّىٰ نَرَ‌ى اللَّـهَ جَهْرَ‌ةً

And [recall] when you said, “O Moosaa, we will never believe you until we see Allah plainly” [2:55]

وكذلك قوله تعالى : وإذ أخذنا ميثاقكم ورفعنا فوقكم الطور خذوا ما آتيناكم بقوة واسمعوا قالوا سمعنا وعصينا وأشربوا في قلوبهم العجل بكفرهم قل بئسما يأمركم به إيمانكم إن كنتم مؤمنين [ 2 \ 93 ] . ـ

And similarly His statement:

وَإِذْ أَخَذْنَا مِيثَاقَكُمْ وَرَ‌فَعْنَا فَوْقَكُمُ الطُّورَ‌ خُذُوا مَا آتَيْنَاكُم بِقُوَّةٍ وَاسْمَعُوا ۖ قَالُوا سَمِعْنَا وَعَصَيْنَا وَأُشْرِ‌بُوا فِي قُلُوبِهِمُ الْعِجْلَ بِكُفْرِ‌هِمْ ۚ قُلْ بِئْسَمَا يَأْمُرُ‌كُم بِهِ إِيمَانُكُمْ إِن كُنتُم مُّؤْمِنِينَ

And [recall] when We took your covenant and raised over you the mount, [saying], “Take what We have given you with determination and listen.” They said [instead], “We hear and disobey.” And their hearts absorbed [the worship of] the calf because of their disbelief. Say, “How wretched is that which your faith enjoins upon you, if you are in fact believers.” [2:93]

فها هم يؤخذ الميثاق عليهم ويرفع فوقهم الطور ، ويقال لهم : خذوا ما آتيناكم بقوة واسمعوا [ ص: 109 ] فكله يساوي قوله : وقد تعلمون أني رسول الله إليكم ، لأن قد هنا للتحقيق ، ومع ذلك يؤذونه بقولهم : سمعنا وعصينا ، ويؤذونه بأن أشربوا في قلوبهم حب العجل وعبادته بكفرهم ، ولذا قال لهم : بئسما يأمركم به إيمانكم إن كنتم مؤمنين . ـ

So here Allah took a covenant from them and raised the mount over them and said, “Take what We have given with with determination and listen!“, and this is like is His statement, “and you certainly know that I am the messenger of Allah to you” because here it is a confirmation of that. However in the face of that they abused him with their statement, “we hear and we disobey” and they abused him in that they drank up him their hearts the love of the calf and its worship due to their kufr, so because of that he said to them, “How wretched is that which your faith enjoins upon you, if you are in fact believers“.

وقد جمع إيذاء الكفار لرسول الله مع إيذاء قوم موسى لموسى في قوله تعالى : يسألك أهل الكتاب أن تنزل عليهم كتابا من السماء فقد سألوا موسى أكبر من ذلك فقالوا أرنا الله جهرة فأخذتهم الصاعقة بظلمهم الآية [ 4 \ 153 ] . ـ

And He combined the Kuffaar‘s abuse of the Messenger of Allah with the people of Moosaa’s abuse of Moosaa in His statement:

يَسْأَلُكَ أَهْلُ الْكِتَابِ أَن تُنَزِّلَ عَلَيْهِمْ كِتَابًا مِّنَ السَّمَاءِ ۚ فَقَدْ سَأَلُوا مُوسَىٰ أَكْبَرَ‌ مِن ذَٰلِكَ فَقَالُوا أَرِ‌نَا اللَّـهَ جَهْرَ‌ةً فَأَخَذَتْهُمُ الصَّاعِقَةُ بِظُلْمِهِمْ

The Ahl al-Kitaab ask you to bring down to them a book from the heaven. But they had asked of Moosaa [even] greater than that and said, “Show us Allah plainly,” so the thunderbolt struck them for their wrongdoing. [4:153]

ومن مجموع هذا يتبين أن الإيذاء المنصوص عليه هنا هو في خصوص الرسالة ، ولا مانع من أنهم آذوه بأنواع من الإيذاء في شخصه ، وفي ما جاء به فبرأه الله مما قالوا في آية ” الأحزاب ” وعاقبهم على إيذائه فيما أرسل به إليهم بزيغ قلوبهم ، والعلم عند الله تعالى . ـ

And in this juxtaposition, He made it clear that the abuses mentioned in the texts here are specifically in reference to messengership, though this does not preclude that they abused him with personal attacks. And regarding what occurred of it, then in surah al-Ahzaab Allah cleared him of what they said and He punished them with a deviation of their hearts for their abuses concerning what had been sent to them. And the knowledge is with Allah.

[Adwaa’ al-Bayaan 8/109-110]

See also: The Sharee’ah of Moosaa and the Sharee’ah of Muhammad

See also: The two blindnesses and deafnesses of Banu Israa’eel: Imam al-Shinqitee

See also: The Qur’an, the Tawrah and the Injeel: Tafsir ibn Kathir

See also: The Preservation of the Qur’an and the Preservation of the Tawrah: Imam al-Shinqitee

See also: The Nine Signs given to Moosaa: Tafsir al-Shinqitee

See also: Benefits from the Story of the Mother of Moosaa: Imam al-Sa’di

See also: Benefits from the story of Moosaa and al-Khadr: Imam al-Sa’di

See also: The Story of Qarun: Tafsir al-Sa’di

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2 thoughts on “Banu Israa’eel’s abuse of Moosaa: Tafsir al-Shinqitee

  1. Pingback: The Nine Signs given to Moosaa: Tafsir al-Shinqitee | Tulayhah

  2. Pingback: The Story of Qarun: Tafsir al-Sa’di | Tulayhah

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