Tafsir of Surah al-Baqarah 130-141: al-Tafsir al-Muyassar

This is the fourteenth installment of our translation of al-Tafsir al-Muyassar‘s explanation of surah al-Baqarah, covering ayaat 130-141. This passage calls mankind to follow the religion of Ibrahim and to turn away from other paths. See the series guide here for more information about this series and other installments.

وَمَن يَرْغَبُ عَن مِّلَّةِ إِبْرَاهِيمَ إِلَّا مَن سَفِهَ نَفْسَهُ ۚ وَلَقَدِ اصْطَفَيْنَاهُ فِي الدُّنْيَا ۖ وَإِنَّهُ فِي الْآخِرَةِ لَمِنَ الصَّالِحِينَ

And who would be averse to the religion of Ibrahim except one who makes a fool of himself? We have chosen him in the world, and in the hereafter he is one of the upright ones. [2:130]

ولا أحد يُعرض عن دين إبراهيم- وهو الإسلام- إلا سفيه جاهل، ولقد اخترنا إبراهيم في الدنيا نبيًّا ورسولا وإنه في الآخرة لمن الصالحين الذين لهم أعلى الدرجات.ـ

130. There is no one who turns away from the religion of Ibrahim, which is Islam, except for an ignorant fool. We have chosen Ibrahim as a prophet and messenger in this life, and in the hereafter he will be one of the upright ones who will be at the highest level.

إِذْ قَالَ لَهُ رَبُّهُ أَسْلِمْ ۖ قَالَ أَسْلَمْتُ لِرَبِّ الْعَالَمِينَ

And when his Lord told him, “Submit,” he said, “I have submitted to the Lord of all creation.” [2:131]

وسبب هذا الاختيار مسارعته للإسلام دون تردد، حين قال له ربه: أخلص نفسك لله منقادًا له. فاستجاب إبراهيم وقال: أسلمت لرب العالمين إخلاصًا وتوحيدًا ومحبة وإنابة.ـ

131. The reason that Allah chose him is because of his eagerness to submit without any hesitation when Allah told him, “Make yourself purely for Allah, completely obedient to Him.” So Ibrahim responded by saying, “I have submitted myself entirely to the Lord of all creation, singling Him out for worship, love, and always turning back to Him.

وَوَصَّىٰ بِهَا إِبْرَاهِيمُ بَنِيهِ وَيَعْقُوبُ يَا بَنِيَّ إِنَّ اللَّـهَ اصْطَفَىٰ لَكُمُ الدِّينَ فَلَا تَمُوتُنَّ إِلَّا وَأَنتُم مُّسْلِمُونَ

And Ibrahim advised his sons, as did Ya’qub, “O my son, Allah has chosen this religion for you, so do not die unless you are a Muslim.” [2:132]

وحثَّ إبراهيمُ ويعقوبُ أبناءهما على الثبات على الإسلام قائلَيْن: يا أبناءنا إن الله اختار لكم هذا الدين- وهو دين الإسلام الذي جاء به محمد صلى الله عليه وسلم- فلا تفارقوه أيام حياتكم، ولا يأتكم الموت إلا وأنتم عليه.ـ

132. Ibrahim and Ya’qub urged their children to be steadfast on Islam by saying, “O children, Allah has chosen this religion for you – which is the religion of Islam that Muhammad came with – so do not part from it for even one day of your lives and do not let death come to you except while you are practicing it.

أَمْ كُنتُمْ شُهَدَاءَ إِذْ حَضَرَ يَعْقُوبَ الْمَوْتُ إِذْ قَالَ لِبَنِيهِ مَا تَعْبُدُونَ مِن بَعْدِي قَالُوا نَعْبُدُ إِلَـٰهَكَ وَإِلَـٰهَ آبَائِكَ إِبْرَاهِيمَ وَإِسْمَاعِيلَ وَإِسْحَاقَ إِلَـٰهًا وَاحِدًا وَنَحْنُ لَهُ مُسْلِمُونَ

Or did you witness when death came to Ya’qub and he said to his children, “What will you worship after me?” They said, “We will worship your God and the God of our forefathers Ibrahim, Ismaa’eel and Ishaaq – one God, and we are those who submit to Him. [2:133]

أكنتم أيها اليهود حاضرين حين جاء الموتُ يعقوبَ، إذ جمع أبناءه وسألهم ما تعبدون من بعد موتي؟ قالوا: نعبد إلهك وإله آبائك إبراهيم وإسماعيل وإسحاق إلهًا واحدًا، ونحن له منقادون خاضعون.ـ

133. O Jews, were you present when death came to Ya’qub and he brought his sons together and asked them, “What will you worship after my death?” They said, “We will worship your God and the God of our forefathers Ibrahim, Ismaa’eel and Ishaaq – one God. And we are obedient and submissive to Him.”

تِلْكَ أُمَّةٌ قَدْ خَلَتْ ۖ لَهَا مَا كَسَبَتْ وَلَكُم مَّا كَسَبْتُمْ ۖ وَلَا تُسْأَلُونَ عَمَّا كَانُوا يَعْمَلُونَ

That was a nation that has passed away. They will have what they earned, and you will have what you earned. And you will not be asked about what they used to do. [2:134]

تلك أُمَّة من أسلافكم قد مضَتْ، لهم أعمالهم، ولكم أعمَالكم، ولا تُسْألون عن أعمالهم، وهم لا يُسْألون عن أعمالكم، وكلٌّ سيجازى بما فعله، لا يؤاخذ أحد بذنب أحد، ولا ينفعُ أحدًا إلا إيمانُه وتقواه.ـ

134. That was a nation of your predecessors which has passed away. They have their actions and you have your actions. You will not be asked about their actions, nor will they be asked about your actions. Everyone will be repaid for what they did. No one will be punished for another’s sins, and nothing will be of benefit to a person except for his faith and his taqwa.

وَقَالُوا كُونُوا هُودًا أَوْ نَصَارَىٰ تَهْتَدُوا ۗ قُلْ بَلْ مِلَّةَ إِبْرَاهِيمَ حَنِيفًا ۖ وَمَا كَانَ مِنَ الْمُشْرِكِينَ

They said, “Be Jews or Christians, you will be guided.” Say, “Instead, the monotheistic religion of Ibrahim. And he was not one of the mushrikoon.” [2:135]

وقالت اليهود لأمَّة محمد صلى الله عليه وسلم: ادخلوا في دين اليهودية تجدوا الهداية، وقالت النصارى لهم مثل ذلك. قل لهم- أيها الرسول-: بل الهداية أن نتبع- جميعًا- ملة إبراهيم، الذي مال عن كل دين باطل إلى دين الحق، وما كان من المشركين بالله تعالى.ـ

135. The Jews told Muhammad’s nation, “Enter into the Jewish religion and you will find the right guidance,” and the Christians said something similar as well. Tell them – O Messenger -, “Rather, the right guidance is that we all follow the religion of Ibrahim who turned away from every false religion instead to the true religion. And he was not one of those who associated partners with Allah.”

قُولُوا آمَنَّا بِاللَّـهِ وَمَا أُنزِلَ إِلَيْنَا وَمَا أُنزِلَ إِلَىٰ إِبْرَاهِيمَ وَإِسْمَاعِيلَ وَإِسْحَاقَ وَيَعْقُوبَ وَالْأَسْبَاطِ وَمَا أُوتِيَ مُوسَىٰ وَعِيسَىٰ وَمَا أُوتِيَ النَّبِيُّونَ مِن رَّبِّهِمْ لَا نُفَرِّقُ بَيْنَ أَحَدٍ مِّنْهُمْ وَنَحْنُ لَهُ مُسْلِمُونَ

Say, “We believe in Allah and what has been sent down to us and what has been sent down to Ibrahim, Ismaa’eel, Ishaaq, Ya’qub, and the Asbaat, and what was given Moosaa and ‘Eesaa, and what was given to the the prophets from their Lord. We make no distinction between any of them, and we are those who submit to Him. [2:136]

قولوا- أيها المؤمنون- لهؤلاء اليهود والنَّصارى: صدَّقنا بالله الواحد المعبود بحق، وبما أنزل إلينا من القرآن الذي أوحاه الله إلى نبيه ورسوله محمد صلى الله عليه وسلم، وما أنزل من الصحف إلى إبراهيم وابنيه إسماعيل وإسحاق، وإلى يعقوب والأسباط- وهم الأنبياء مِن ولد يعقوب الذين كانوا في قبائل بني إسرائيل الاثنتي عشرة- وما أُعطي موسى من التوراة، وعيسى من الإنجيل، وما أُعطي الأنبياء جميعًا من وحي ربهم، لا نفرق بين أحد منهم في الإيمان، ونحن خاضعون لله بالطاعة والعبادة.ـ

136. Say – O believers – to these Jews and Christians, “We believe in Allah, who is One and who is the only one worthy of worship, and we believe in the Qur’an which was sent down to us which Allah revealed to His Prophet and Messenger Muhammad, and we believe in the scriptures sent down to Ibrahim and his sons Ismaa’eel and Ishaaq and to Ya’qub and the Asbaat, who are those prophets from the descendants of Ya’qub who were members of the twelve tribes of Banu Israa’eel. And we believe in the Tawrah that was given to Moosaa and the Injeel that was given to ‘Eesaa and in what all the prophets were given of revelation from their Lord. We do not make distinctions between any of them in terms of belief. We are submissive to Allah in obedience and worship.

فَإِنْ آمَنُوا بِمِثْلِ مَا آمَنتُم بِهِ فَقَدِ اهْتَدَوا ۖ وَّإِن تَوَلَّوْا فَإِنَّمَا هُمْ فِي شِقَاقٍ ۖ فَسَيَكْفِيكَهُمُ اللَّـهُ ۚ وَهُوَ السَّمِيعُ الْعَلِيمُ

So if they believe in the same things as what you believe in, they have been rightly guided. But if they turn away, then they are certainly at odds. Then Allah will be sufficient for you against them. And He is the Hearing, the All-Knowing. [2:137]

فإنْ آمن الكفار من اليهود والنصارى وغيرهم بمثل الذي آمنتم به، مما جاء به الرسول، فقد اهتدوا إلى الحق، وإن أعرضوا فإنما هم في خلاف شديد، فسيكفيك الله- أيها الرسول- شرَّهم وينصرك عليهم، وهو السميع لأقوالكم، العليم بأحوالكم.ـ

137. So if the disbelieving Jews, Christians or any other disbelievers believe in the same things which you believe – those things which the Prophet brought – then they have been guided to the truth. But if they turn away, then they are certainly at a place of strong opposition. So then Allah will be sufficient for you – O Messenger – against their harm and protect you from them. And He Hears their statements, is All-Knowing of their conditions.

صِبْغَةَ اللَّـهِ ۖ وَمَنْ أَحْسَنُ مِنَ اللَّـهِ صِبْغَةً ۖ وَنَحْنُ لَهُ عَابِدُونَ

The coloring of Allah. And who is better than Allah at coloring? And we are servants to Him. [2:138]

الزموا دين الله الذي فطركم عليه، فليس هناك أحسنُ مِن فطرة الله التي فطر الناس عليها، فالزموها وقولوا نحن خاضعون مطيعون لربنا في اتباعنا ملَّة إبراهيم.ـ

138. Stick to the religion of Allah which He has fashioned you to accept, for there is nothing better than the natural inclination that Allah fashioned mankind to accept. So cling to it and say, “We are submissive and obedient to our Lord in our following Ibrahim’s religion.”

قُلْ أَتُحَاجُّونَنَا فِي اللَّـهِ وَهُوَ رَبُّنَا وَرَبُّكُمْ وَلَنَا أَعْمَالُنَا وَلَكُمْ أَعْمَالُكُمْ وَنَحْنُ لَهُ مُخْلِصُونَ

Say, “Do you argue about Allah when He is our Lord and your Lord, and we have our deeds and you have your deeds, and we are sincere to Him?” [2:139]

قل- أيها الرسول لأهل الكتاب-: أتجادلوننا في توحيد الله والإخلاص له، وهو رب العالمين جميعًا، لا يختص بقوم دون قوم، ولنا أعمالنا ولكم أعمالكم، ونحن لله مخلصو العبادة والطَّاعة لا نشرك به شيئًا، ولا نعبد أحدًا غيره.ـ

139. Say – O Messenger – to the People of the Book, “Do you argue with us about Allah’s sole right to be worshiped and worshiping Him exclusively when He is the Lord of all creation, not just of these people or those people. We have our deeds and you have your deeds, and we make our worship and obedience purely for Allah without making anything a partner with Him and without worshiping anything besides Him.

أَمْ تَقُولُونَ إِنَّ إِبْرَاهِيمَ وَإِسْمَاعِيلَ وَإِسْحَاقَ وَيَعْقُوبَ وَالْأَسْبَاطَ كَانُوا هُودًا أَوْ نَصَارَىٰ ۗ قُلْ أَأَنتُمْ أَعْلَمُ أَمِ اللَّـهُ ۗ وَمَنْ أَظْلَمُ مِمَّن كَتَمَ شَهَادَةً عِندَهُ مِنَ اللَّـهِ ۗ وَمَا اللَّـهُ بِغَافِلٍ عَمَّا تَعْمَلُونَ

Or do you say that Ibrahim, Ismaa’eel, Ishaaq, Ya’qub and the Asbaat were Jews or Christians? Say, “Are you more knowledgeable, or is Allah?” And who is worse than one who conceals a testimony he has from Allah? And Allah is not unaware of what you do. [2:140]

بل أتقولون مجادلين في الله: إن إبراهيم وإسماعيل وإسحاق ويعقوب والأسباط- وهم الأنبياء الذين كانوا في قبائل بني إسرائيل الاثنتي عشرة من ولد يعقوب- كانوا على دين اليهود أو النصارى؟ وهذا كذب؛ فقد بُعِثوا وماتوا قبل نزول التوراة والإنجيل. قل لهم- أيها الرسول-: أأنتم أعلم بدينهم أم الله تعالى؟ وقد أخبر في القرآن بأنهم كانوا حنفاء مسلمين، ولا أحد أظلم منكم حين تخفون شهادة ثابتة عندكم من الله تعالى، وتدَّعون خلافها افتراء على الله. وما الله بغافل عن شيء من أعمالكم، بل هو مُحْصٍ لها ومجازيكم عليها.ـ

140. Do they instead argue about Allah by saying, “Ibrahim, Ismaa’eel, Ishaaq, Ya’qub, and the Asbaat – who are the Prophets of the twelve tribes of Banu Israa’eel who descended from Ya’qub – were following the religion of the Jews or the Christians? That is false, for they were sent and passed away all before the revelation of the Tawrah and the Injeel. Tell them – O Messenger -, “Are you more knowledgeable about their religion, or is Allah?” for He has told us in the Qur’an that they were monotheist Muslims. And there is no one more unjust than you when you conceal the solid evidence that you have from Allah and instead claim the opposite of that, making up things about Allah! And Allah is not unaware of anything that you do. On the contrary, He is keeping track of that and will repay them for it.

تِلْكَ أُمَّةٌ قَدْ خَلَتْ ۖ لَهَا مَا كَسَبَتْ وَلَكُم مَّا كَسَبْتُمْ ۖ وَلَا تُسْأَلُونَ عَمَّا كَانُوا يَعْمَلُونَ

That was a nation that has passed away. They have what they earned and you have you what earned. And you will not be asked about what they used to do. [2:141]

تلك أُمَّة من أسلافكم قد مضَتْ، لهم أعمالهم ولكم أعمالكم، ولا تُسْألون عن أعمالهم، وهم لا يُسْألون عن أعمالكم. وفي الآية قطع للتعلق بالمخلوقين، وعدم الاغترار بالانتساب إليهم، وأن العبرة بالإيمان بالله وعبادته وحده، واتباع رسله، وأن من كفر برسول منهم فقد كفر بسائر الرسل.ـ

141. That was a nation of your predecessors which has passed away. They have their actions and you have your actions. You will not be asked about their actions, nor will they be asked about your actions. This ayah serves to dispel the idea of attachment to other created beings and being fooled by connections of lineage to them, for the crucial factor is believing in Allah, worshiping Him alone, and following His messengers. And whoever disbelieves in one of those messengers has disbelieved in all the rest of them as well.

[al-Tafsir al-Muyassar pg 20-21]

Explore more of this series with our al-Tafsir al-Muyassar Translation Index

See also: Allah Addressing the Prophet vs Allah Addressing the Believers

See also: http://Whoever Denies One Messenger has Denied Them All: Tafsir al-Shinqitee

See also: The Sibghah of Allah: Tafsir al-Sa’di

See also: “Do you argue with us about Allah while He is our Lord and your Lord?”: Tafsir al-Sa’di

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