Tafsir of Surah al-Baqarah 87-96: al-Tafsir al-Muyassar

This is the ninth installment of our translation of al-Tafsir al-Muyassar‘s explanation of surah al-Baqarah, covering ayaat 87-96. This passage focuses on Banu Israa’eel‘s refusal to believe in what Allah has sent to them. See the series guide here for more information about this series and other installments.

وَلَقَدْ آتَيْنَا مُوسَى الْكِتَابَ وَقَفَّيْنَا مِن بَعْدِهِ بِالرُّسُلِ ۖ وَآتَيْنَا عِيسَى ابْنَ مَرْيَمَ الْبَيِّنَاتِ وَأَيَّدْنَاهُ بِرُوحِ الْقُدُسِ ۗ أَفَكُلَّمَا جَاءَكُمْ رَسُولٌ بِمَا لَا تَهْوَىٰ أَنفُسُكُمُ اسْتَكْبَرْتُمْ فَفَرِيقًا كَذَّبْتُمْ وَفَرِيقًا تَقْتُلُونَ

And We gave the Scripture to Moosaa and followed him up with other messengers. And We gave ‘Eesaa the son of Maryam clear signs and supported him with the Ruh al-Qudus. Isn’t it that whenever a messenger came to you with something your souls did not like you became arrogant, so you denied some and killed others. [2:87]

ولقد أعطينا موسى التوراة، وأتبعناه برسل من بني إسرائيل، وأعطينا عيسى ابن مريم المعجزات الواضحات، وقوَّيناه بجبريل عليه السلام. أفكلما جاءكم رسول بوحي من عند الله لا يوافق أهواءكم، استعليتم عليه، فكذَّبتم فريقًا وتقتلون فريقًا؟ـ

87. And We granted Moosaa the Tawrah and followed him up with other messengers from Banu Israa’eel. And We granted ‘Eesaa the son of Maryam clear miracles and strengthened him with Jibreel (peace by upon him). Isn’t it the case that every time a messenger came to you with revelation from Allah that didn’t match with your desires, you rose up against him, and so you denied some and killed others.

وَقَالُوا قُلُوبُنَا غُلْفٌ ۚ بَل لَّعَنَهُمُ اللَّـهُ بِكُفْرِهِمْ فَقَلِيلًا مَّا يُؤْمِنُونَ

And they said, “Our hearts are wrapped.” No, rather Allah has cursed them for their disbelief, for how little do they believe! [2:88]

وقال بنو إسرائيل لنبي الله ورسوله محمد صلى الله عليه وسلم: قلوبنا مغطاة، لا يَنْفُذ إليها قولك. وليس الأمر كما ادَّعَوْا، بل قلوبهم ملعونة، مطبوع عليها، وهم مطرودون من رحمة الله بسبب جحودهم، فلا يؤمنون إلا إيمانًا قليلا لا ينفعهم.ـ

88. Banu Israa’eel told Allah’s prophet and messenger Muhammad (peace and blessing be upon him) that, “Our hearts are covered; your speech cannot reach them.” But things are not as they claim. Rather, their hearts are cursed and sealed over and they have been thrown out of Allah’s mercy due to their rejection of faith. So they will not believe, except for a small amount of faith which will not benefit them.

وَلَمَّا جَاءَهُمْ كِتَابٌ مِّنْ عِندِ اللَّـهِ مُصَدِّقٌ لِّمَا مَعَهُمْ وَكَانُوا مِن قَبْلُ يَسْتَفْتِحُونَ عَلَى الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا فَلَمَّا جَاءَهُم مَّا عَرَفُوا كَفَرُوا بِهِ ۚ فَلَعْنَةُ اللَّـهِ عَلَى الْكَافِرِينَ

And when a scripture from Allah came to them, affirming what they had with them and they had previously been asking for victory over those who disbelieved – when something they recognized came to them they disbelieved in it. So Allah’s curse is on the disbelievers [2:89]

وحين جاءهم القرأن من عند الله مصدقا لما معهم من التوراة جحدوه، وأنكروا نبوة محمد صلى الله عليه وسلم، وكانوا قبل بعثته يستنصرون به على مشركي العرب، ويقولون: قَرُبَ مبعث نبيِّ آخرِ الزمان، وسنتبعه ونقاتلكم معه. فلمَّا جاءهم الرسول الذي عرفوا صفاتِه وصِدْقَه كفروا به وكذبوه. فلعنةُ الله على كل مَن كفر بنبي الله ورسوله محمد صلى الله عليه وسلم، وكتابه الذي أوحاه الله إليه.ـ

89. And when the Qur’an from Allah came to them, affirming the Tawrah that they already had, they refused to believe in it and they rejected the prophethood of Muhammad (peace and blessing be upon him). But before he had been sent, they used to ask Allah to aid them with such a prophet against the polytheist Arabs and they would say, “The arrival of the prophet of the end of times is near! We will follow him and fight alongside him against you!” But then when the Prophet, whose description and truthfulness they recognized, came to them, they disbelieved in him and called him a liar. So Allah’s curse is on every one who disbelieves in Allah’s prophet and messenger Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) and the scripture which Allah revealed to him.

بِئْسَمَا اشْتَرَوْا بِهِ أَنفُسَهُمْ أَن يَكْفُرُوا بِمَا أَنزَلَ اللَّـهُ بَغْيًا أَن يُنَزِّلَ اللَّـهُ مِن فَضْلِهِ عَلَىٰ مَن يَشَاءُ مِنْ عِبَادِهِ ۖ فَبَاءُوا بِغَضَبٍ عَلَىٰ غَضَبٍ ۚ وَلِلْكَافِرِينَ عَذَابٌ مُّهِينٌ

How evil is what they have sold their souls for, that they disbelieve in what Allah sent down, angry that Allah would send some of His bounty down upon any slave of His that He wished. So they have brought wrath upon wrath on themselves. And there is a humiliating punishment for the disbelievers. [2:90]

قَبُحَ ما اختاره بنو إسرائيل لأنفسهم؛ إذ استبدلوا الكفر بالإيمان ظلمًا وحسدًا لإنزال الله من فضله القرآن على نبي الله ورسوله محمد صلى الله عليه وسلم، فرجعوا بغضب من الله عليهم بسبب جحودهم بالنبي محمد صلى الله عليه وسلم، بعد غضبه عليهم بسبب تحريفهم التوراة. وللجاحدين نبوَّة محمد صلى الله عليه وسلم عذابٌ يذلُّهم ويخزيهم.ـ

90. How terrible is what the Banu Israa’eel chose for themselves when they wrongfully replaced faith with disbelief! They did this out of jealousy that Allah, out of His graciousness, revealed the Qur’an to His prophet and messenger Muhammad (peace and blessing be upon him). This brought Allah’s wrath on them due to their refusal to believe in the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessing be upon him), in addition to Allah’s wrath towards them due to their distorting the Tawrah. And there is a punishment for those who reject the prophethood of Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) that will humiliate and disgrace them.

وَإِذَا قِيلَ لَهُمْ آمِنُوا بِمَا أَنزَلَ اللَّـهُ قَالُوا نُؤْمِنُ بِمَا أُنزِلَ عَلَيْنَا وَيَكْفُرُونَ بِمَا وَرَاءَهُ وَهُوَ الْحَقُّ مُصَدِّقًا لِّمَا مَعَهُمْ ۗ قُلْ فَلِمَ تَقْتُلُونَ أَنبِيَاءَ اللَّـهِ مِن قَبْلُ إِن كُنتُم مُّؤْمِنِينَ

And when they were told, “Believe in what Allah has sent down,” they said, “We believe in what was sent down to us,” while they disbelieved in what came after that, even though it is the truth which affirms what they have! Say, “Then whey did you kill Allah’s prophets in the past if you were believers?” [2:91]

وإذا قال بعض المسلمين لليهود: صدِّقوا بما أنزل الله من القرآن، قالوا: نحن نصدِّق بما أنزل الله على أنبيائنا، ويجحدون ما أنزل الله بعد ذلك، وهو الحق مصدقًا لما معهم. فلو كانوا يؤمنون بكتبهم حقًا لآمنوا بالقرآن الذي صدَّقها. قل لهم- يا محمد-: إن كنتم مؤمنين بما أنزل الله عليكم، فلماذا قتلتم أنبياء الله مِن قبل؟ـ

91. And when some of the Muslims told the Jews, “Believe in the Qur’an that Allah has sent down,” they said, “We believe in what Allah revealed to our prophets,” and they refused to believe in what Allah revealed after that despite the fact that it is the truth and affirms what they have. If they really believed in their scriptures they would believe in the Qur’an which affirms those scriptures. Tell them, Muhammad, “If you were believers in what Allah revealed to you, then why did you kill Allah’s prophets before?”

وَلَقَدْ جَاءَكُم مُّوسَىٰ بِالْبَيِّنَاتِ ثُمَّ اتَّخَذْتُمُ الْعِجْلَ مِن بَعْدِهِ وَأَنتُمْ ظَالِمُونَ

And Moosaa came to you with clear signs. Then after him you took the calf and you were wrongdoers. [2:92]

ولقد جاءكم نبي الله موسى بالمعجزات الواضحات الدالة على صدقه، كالطوفان والجراد والقُمَّل والضفادع، وغير ذلك مما ذكره الله في القرآن العظيم، ومع ذلك اتخذتم العجل معبودًا، بعد ذهاب موسى إلى ميقات ربه، وأنتم متجاوزون حدود الله.ـ

92. And Allah’s prophet Moosaa came to you with clear miracles which demonstrated that he truly was a prophet – miracles such as flooding, locusts, lice, frogs, as well as other things which has mentioned in the Qur’an. But despite that, you took the calf as something that you worshiped after Moosaa had gone to meet with his Lord, and you were crossing Allah’s limits!

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 when We took a covenant from you and raised the mountain over you, “Take what We have given firmly and listen!” They said, “We have heard and we have disobeyed,” and they drank the calf into their hearts due to their disbelief. Say, “How evil is what your faith commands you to do, if you are truly believers!” [2:93]

واذكروا حين أَخَذْنا عليكم عهدًا مؤكدًا بقَبول ما جاءكم به موسى من التوراة، فنقضتم العهد، فرفعنا جبل الطور فوق رؤوسكم، وقلنا لكم: خذوا ما آتيناكم بجدٍّ، واسمعوا وأطيعوا، وإلا أسقطنا الجبل عليكم، فقلتم: سمعنا قولك وعصينا أمرك؛ لأن عبادة العجل قد امتزجت بقلوبكم بسبب تماديكم في الكفر. قل لهم- أيها الرسول-: قَبُحَ ما يأمركم به إيمانكم من الكفر والضلال، إن كنتم مصدِّقين بما أنزل الله عليكم.ـ

93. And remember when We took an important covenant from you that you would accept the Tawrah that Moosaa brought to you. But then you broke that covenant, so we raised the Mount Toor over your heads and told you, “Take what we have given you seriously, and listen and obey. Otherwise We will drop this mountain on you!” Then you said, “We have heard and we have disobeyed Your command.” That was because the worship of the calf had become mixed into their hearts as a result of their continuing disbelief. Tell them, O Messenger, “How terrible is the disbelief and misguidance that your faith commands you to do, if you are actually believers in what Allah has sent down to you!”

قُلْ إِن كَانَتْ لَكُمُ الدَّارُ الْآخِرَةُ عِندَ اللَّـهِ خَالِصَةً مِّن دُونِ النَّاسِ فَتَمَنَّوُا الْمَوْتَ إِن كُنتُمْ صَادِقِينَ

Say, “If the home of the hereafter with Allah is exclusively for you and not anyone else, then wish for death if you are telling the truth.” [2:94]

قل- أيها الرسول- لليهود الذين يدَّعون أن الجنة خاصة بهم؛ لزعمهم أنهم أولياء الله من دون الناس، وأنهم أبناؤه وأحباؤه: إن كان الأمر كذلك فادْعُوا على الكاذبين منكم أو من غيركم بالموت، إن كنتم صادقين في دعواكم هذه.ـ

94. O Messenger, tell the Jews who claim that Jannah is only for them, based on their claim that they and no one else are Alla’s chosen ones and that they are His children and beloved ones, “If that is really the case, then pray for the death of any who disbelieve you or anyone besides you if you really believe this claim of yours!”

وَلَن يَتَمَنَّوْهُ أَبَدًا بِمَا قَدَّمَتْ أَيْدِيهِمْ ۗ وَاللَّـهُ عَلِيمٌ بِالظَّالِمِينَ

But they will never wish for that because of what their hands have put forward. And Allah is fully aware of the wrong-doers. [2:95]

ولن يفعلوا ذلك أبدًا؛ لما يعرفونه من صدق النبي محمد صلى الله عليه وسلم ومن كذبهم وافترائهم، وبسبب ما ارتكبوه من الكفر والعصيان، المؤَدِّيَيْن إلى حرمانهم من الجنة ودخول النار. والله تعالى عليم بالظالمين من عباده، وسيجازيهم على ذلك.ـ

95. But they will never do that because of their knowledge that the Prophet Muhammad is a true prophet and that they have lied and invented claims, and because of the disbelief and disobedience that they have done. It is these two things that cause them to be denied Jannah and taken to the Hellfire. And Allah the Almighty is all-knowing of His wrong-doing slaves, and He will repay them for their wrongs.

وَلَتَجِدَنَّهُمْ أَحْرَصَ النَّاسِ عَلَىٰ حَيَاةٍ وَمِنَ الَّذِينَ أَشْرَكُوا ۚ يَوَدُّ أَحَدُهُمْ لَوْ يُعَمَّرُ أَلْفَ سَنَةٍ وَمَا هُوَ بِمُزَحْزِحِهِ مِنَ الْعَذَابِ أَن يُعَمَّرَ ۗ وَاللَّـهُ بَصِيرٌ بِمَا يَعْمَلُونَ

And you will certainly find them to be the people who crave this life the most – them and those who worship others alongside Allah. Any one of them would love to live for a thousand years, but he is not protected from the punishment by remaining alive. And Allah is the Seer of all that they do. [2:96]

ولتعلمَنَّ- أيها الرسول- أن اليهود أشد الناس رغبة في طول الحياة أيًّا كانت هذه الحياة من الذلَّة والمهانة، بل تزيد رغبتهم في طول الحياة على رغبات المشركين. يتمنى اليهودي أن يعيش ألف سنة، ولا يُبْعده هذا العمر الطويل إن حصل من عذاب الله. والله تعالى لا يخفى عليه شيء من أعمالهم وسيجازيهم عليها بما يستحقون من العذاب.ـ

96. And you certainly know, O Messenger, that the Jews have a stronger desire for long life than any other people, no matter the humiliation and disgrace found in this life. In fact, their desire to live long is even greater than that of the those who worship others besides Allah. A Jew would wish to live one thousand years, but this long life would not put him any farther away from Allah’s punishment. And none of their actions are hidden to Allah the Almighty, and He will repay them with the punishment that they deserve.

[al-Tafsir al-Muyassar pg 13-15]

See also: al-Tafsir al-Muyassar Translation Index

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