Tafsir of Surah al-Baqarah 47-57: al-Tafsir al-Muyassar

This is the fifth installment of our translation of al-Tafsir al-Muyassar‘s explanation of surah al-Baqarah, covering ayaat 47-57, in which Allah reminds the Children of Israel of His blessings upon them and their ingratitude for those blessings. See the series guide here for more information.

يَا بَنِي إِسْرَائِيلَ اذْكُرُوا نِعْمَتِيَ الَّتِي أَنْعَمْتُ عَلَيْكُمْ وَأَنِّي فَضَّلْتُكُمْ عَلَى الْعَالَمِينَ

O Children of Israel, remember My favor which I bestowed upon you and that I favored you over all creation. [2:47]

يا ذرية يعقوب تذكَّروا نعمي الكثيرة عليكم، واشكروا لي عليها، وتذكروا أني فَضَّلْتكم على عالَمي زمانكم بكثرة الأنبياء، والكتب المنزَّلة كالتوراة والإنجيل. ـ

47. O offspring of Ya’qub, remember My many favors upon you and be grateful to Me for them, and remember that I favored you over all the created beings of your time. This favoring was by way of the many prophets and revealed scriptures such as the Tawrah and the Injeel.

وَاتَّقُوا يَوْمًا لَّا تَجْزِي نَفْسٌ عَن نَّفْسٍ شَيْئًا وَلَا يُقْبَلُ مِنْهَا شَفَاعَةٌ وَلَا يُؤْخَذُ مِنْهَا عَدْلٌ وَلَا هُمْ يُنصَرُونَ

And fear a day when no soul can avail another soul in the least and when no intercession will be accepted from him nor will any ransom be accepted from him, nor will they be helped. [2:48]

وخافوا يوم القيامة، يوم لا يغني أحد عن أحد شيئًا، ولا يقبل الله شفاعة في الكافرين، ولا يقبل منهم فدية، ولو كانت أموال الأرض جميعًا، ولا يملك أحد في هذا اليوم أن يتقدم لنصرتهم وإنقاذهم من العذاب. ـ

48. Fear the Day of Resurrection, a day on which no one will be able to benefit any one else at all, nor will Allah accept any intercession for the disbelievers, nor will He accept any ransom from them even if it were to be all the riches of the world, nor will any one be able to come forward to assist them or protect them from the punishment on that day.

وَإِذْ نَجَّيْنَاكُم مِّنْ آلِ فِرْعَوْنَ يَسُومُونَكُمْ سُوءَ الْعَذَابِ يُذَبِّحُونَ أَبْنَاءَكُمْ وَيَسْتَحْيُونَ نِسَاءَكُمْ ۚ وَفِي ذَٰلِكُم بَلَاءٌ مِّن رَّبِّكُمْ عَظِيمٌ

And when We saved you from Fir’awn’s people who were afflicting you with a terrible punishment, slaughtering your sons while keeping your women alive. In that, there was a great test from your Lord. [2:49]

واذكروا نعمتنا عليكم حين أنقذناكم من بطش فرعون وأتباعه، وهم يُذيقونكم أشدَّ العذاب، فيُكثِرون مِن ذَبْح أبنائكم، وترك بناتكم للخدمة والامتهان. وفي ذلك اختبار لكم من ربكم، وفي إنجائكم منه نعمة عظيمة، تستوجب شكر الله تعالى في كل عصوركم وأجيالكم.ـ

49. And remember My blessing on you when I saved you from the oppression of Fir’awn and his followers when they had been subjecting you to the harshest punishment. They would often kill your sons while leaving your daughters and their mothers alive to serve them. In that, you were being tried by your Lord. And when you were saved from that trial, it was a tremendous blessing which requires you to be grateful to Allah in every era and generation.

وَإِذْ فَرَقْنَا بِكُمُ الْبَحْرَ فَأَنجَيْنَاكُمْ وَأَغْرَقْنَا آلَ فِرْعَوْنَ وَأَنتُمْ تَنظُرُونَ

And when We split the sea for you, thus saving you, and We drowned Fir’awn’s people while you were watching. [2:50]

واذكروا نعمتنا عليكم، حين فَصَلْنا بسببكم البحر، وجعلنا فيه طرقًا يابسةً، فعبرتم، وأنقذناكم من فرعون وجنوده، ومن الهلاك في الماء. فلما دخل فرعون وجنوده طرقكم أهلكناهم في الماء أمام أعينكم.ـ

50. And remember Our blessing on you when We divided the sea for your sakes and made dry pathways through it which you then took. So We saved you from Fir’awn and his soldiers, as well as saving you from perishing in the water. Then when Fir’awn and his soldiers entered your pathways We destroyed them in the water before your very eyes.

وَإِذْ وَاعَدْنَا مُوسَىٰ أَرْبَعِينَ لَيْلَةً ثُمَّ اتَّخَذْتُمُ الْعِجْلَ مِن بَعْدِهِ وَأَنتُمْ ظَالِمُونَ

And when We appointed forty nights for Moosaa but then you adopted the calf after he left, and you were wrong-doers. [2:51]

واذكروا نعمتنا عليكم: حين واعدنا موسى أربعين ليلة لإنزال التوراة هدايةً ونورًا لكم، فإذا بكم تنتهزون فرصة غيابه هذه المدة القليلة، وتجعلون العجل الذي صنعتموه بأيديكم معبودًا لكم من دون الله- وهذا أشنع الكفر بالله- وأنتم ظالمون باتخاذكم العجل إلهًا.ـ

51. And remember Our blessing on you when We appointed forty days for Moosaa for the Tawrah to be sent down as a guidance and a light for you. Then you seized the opportunity of his being gone for a short time to take an calf which you had fashioned with your own hands as an object of worship other than Allah – and this is the vilest form of disbelief in Allah – and you were wrong-doers for taking this calf as a god.

ثُمَّ عَفَوْنَا عَنكُم مِّن بَعْدِ ذَٰلِكَ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَشْكُرُونَ

Then We pardoned you after that so that you might be grateful. [2:52]

ثمَّ تجاوزنا عن هذه الفعلة المنكرة، وقَبِلْنَا توبتكم بعد عودة موسى؛ رجاءَ أن تشكروا الله على نعمه وأفضاله، ولا تتمادوا في الكفر والطغيان.ـ

52. Then We overlooked this evil action and accepted your repentance after Moosaa returned in hopes that you would be grateful to Allah for His blessings and for how He has favored you instead of persisting in disbelief and transgression.

وَإِذْ آتَيْنَا مُوسَى الْكِتَابَ وَالْفُرْقَانَ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَهْتَدُونَ

And when We gave Moosaa the scripture and the criterion so that you might be guided. [2:53]

واذكروا نعمتنا عليكم حين أعطينا موسى الكتاب الفارق بين الحق والباطل- وهو التوراة-؛ لكي تهتدوا من الضلالة.ـ

53. And remember Our blessing on you when We gave Moosaa the scripture that distinguishes the truth from falsehood – i.e. the Tawrah – so that you might be guided away from misguidance.

وَإِذْ قَالَ مُوسَىٰ لِقَوْمِهِ يَا قَوْمِ إِنَّكُمْ ظَلَمْتُمْ أَنفُسَكُم بِاتِّخَاذِكُمُ الْعِجْلَ فَتُوبُوا إِلَىٰ بَارِئِكُمْ فَاقْتُلُوا أَنفُسَكُمْ ذَٰلِكُمْ خَيْرٌ لَّكُمْ عِندَ بَارِئِكُمْ فَتَابَ عَلَيْكُمْ ۚ إِنَّهُ هُوَ التَّوَّابُ الرَّحِيمُ

And when Moosaa told his people, “O people, you have wrong yourselves by adopting the calf, so repent to your Creator and kill yourselves. That is better for you with your Creator.” Then He accepted your repentance. He is certainly the Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful. [2:54]

واذكروا نعمتنا عليكم حين قال موسى لقومه: إنكم ظلمتم أنفسكم باتخاذكم العجل إلهًا، فتوبوا إلى خالقكم: بأن يَقْتل بعضكم بعضًا، وهذا خير لكم عند خالقكم من الخلود الأبدي في النار، فامتثلتم ذلك، فمنَّ الله عليكم بقَبول توبتكم. إنه تعالى هو التواب لمن تاب مِن عباده، الرحيم بهم.ـ

54. And remember Our blessing to you when Moosaa told his people, “You have wronged yourselves by taking the calf as a god, so repent to your Creator by killing one another. That is better for you in the sight of your Creator than eternity in the Hellfire.” So they did as they were told, and then Allah blessed them by accepting their repentance. He is certainly the Oft-Forgiving and Merciful One to any slave of His that repents.

وَإِذْ قُلْتُمْ يَا مُوسَىٰ لَن نُّؤْمِنَ لَكَ حَتَّىٰ نَرَى اللَّـهَ جَهْرَةً فَأَخَذَتْكُمُ الصَّاعِقَةُ وَأَنتُمْ تَنظُرُونَ

And when they said, “O Moosaa, we will never believe in you until we see Allah plainly.” Then you were stricken by lightening while you were looking. [2:55]

واذكروا إذ قلتم: يا موسى لن نصدقك في أن الكلام الذي نسمعه منك هو كلام الله، حتى نرى الله عِيَانًا، فنزلت نار من السماء رأيتموها بأعينكم، فقَتَلَتْكم بسبب ذنوبكم، وجُرْأتكم على الله تعالى.ـ

55. And remember when you said, “O Moosaa, we will never believe you that the speech we are hearing from you is Allah’s speech until we see Allah with our own eyes.” Then fire was sent down fire from the sky which they saw with their own eyes. Then it killed them due to their sins and their audacity towards Allah.

ثُمَّ بَعَثْنَاكُم مِّن بَعْدِ مَوْتِكُمْ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَشْكُرُونَ

Then We raised you after you had been dead so that you might be grateful. [2:56]

ثم أحييناكم مِن بعد موتكم بالصاعقة؛ لتشكروا نعمة الله عليكم، فهذا الموت عقوبة لهم، ثم بعثهم الله لاستيفاء آجالهم.ـ

56. Then We gave you life after you had been killed by this strike so that you would be grateful for Allah blessing upon you. For this death was a punishment for you, and then Allah raised you back to life so that you could complete the rest of your terms.

وَظَلَّلْنَا عَلَيْكُمُ الْغَمَامَ وَأَنزَلْنَا عَلَيْكُمُ الْمَنَّ وَالسَّلْوَىٰ ۖ كُلُوا مِن طَيِّبَاتِ مَا رَزَقْنَاكُمْ ۖ وَمَا ظَلَمُونَا وَلَـٰكِن كَانُوا أَنفُسَهُمْ يَظْلِمُونَ

And We shaded you with clouds and We sent down manna and salwa to you. Eat of the good food that We have provided for you. And they did not wrong Us, but it was themselves that they were wronging. [2:57]

واذكروا نعمتنا عليكم حين كنتم تتيهون في الأرض؛ إذ جعلنا السحاب مظللا عليكم من حَرِّ الشمس، وأنزلنا عليكم المنَّ، وهو شيء يشبه الصَّمغ طعمه كالعسل، وأنزلنا عليكم السَّلوى وهو طير يشبه السُّمانَى، وقلنا لكم: كلوا من طيِّبات ما رزقناكم، ولا تخالفوا دينكم، فلم تمتثلوا. وما ظلمونا بكفران النعم، ولكن كانوا أنفسهم يظلمون؛ لأن عاقبة الظلم عائدة عليهم.ـ

57. And remember our blessing on you when you were lost and wandering through the earth; We made clouds to shade you from the heat of the sun and sent down manna – which is somewhat similar to gum with a honey-like taste – and We sent down salwa – which is a bird resembling a quail. Then we said, “Eat of the good food that We have provided for you, and do not go against your religion,” but they did not comply. They did not wrong Us by being ungrateful for these blessing, rather it was their own selves that they were wronging because the end result of that wrongdoing would come back upon them.

[al-Tafsir al-Muyassar pages 7-8]

See also: al-Tafsir al-Muyassar Translation Index

See also: Central Themes of Surah al-Baqarah: Sheikh Muhammad Bazmool

See also: The Virtue of this Ummah over the Previous Nations: Imam al-Shinqitee

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