Assorted Qur’an Benefits #22

What follows is a collection of benefits originally posted on our Facebook page and Telegram Channel in the latter part of December 2017:

♦ Allah does not Charge a Soul Beyond its Ability

Imam ibn Jarir al-Tabari mentioned the following narration in part of his famous tafsir:

 6502 – حَدَّثَنِي الْمُثَنَّى قَالَ : حَدَّثَنَا عَبْدُ اللَّهِ قَالَ حَدَّثَنِي مُعَاوِيَةُ عَنْ عَلِيٍّ عَنِ ابْنِ عَبَّاسٍ قَوْلَهُ : ” لَا يُكَلِّفُ اللَّهُ نَفْسًا إِلَّا وُسْعَهَا ” قَالَ : هُمُ الْمُؤْمِنُونَ ، وَسَّعَ اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِمْ أَمْرَ دِينِهِمْ ، فَقَالَ اللَّهُ – جَلَّ ثَنَاؤُهُ – : ( وَمَا جَعَلَ عَلَيْكُمْ فِي الدِّينِ مِنْ حَرَجٍ ) [ سُورَةُ الْحَجِّ : 78 ] ، وَقَالَ : ( يُرِيدُ اللَّهُ بِكُمُ الْيُسْرَ وَلَا يُرِيدُ بِكُمُ الْعُسْرَ ) [ سُورَةُ الْبَقَرَةِ : 185 ] ، وَقَالَ : ( فَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ مَا اسْتَطَعْتُمْ ) [ سُورَةُ التَّغَابُنِ : 16 ] .ـ

… Regarding the ayah:

لَا يُكَلِّفُ اللَّهُ نَفْسًا إِلَّا وُسْعَهَا

Allah does not charge a soul beyond its ability [2:286]

ibn ‘Abbaas said: This is referring to the believers – Allah has made the matter of their religion easy for them. For Allah said:

وَمَا جَعَلَ عَلَيْكُمْ فِي الدِّينِ مِنْ حَرَجٍ

and He has not placed any difficulty upon you in the religion [22:78]

and He said:

يُرِيدُ اللَّهُ بِكُمُ الْيُسْرَ وَلَا يُرِيدُ بِكُمُ الْعُسْرَ

Allah wants ease for you and He does not want hardship for you [2:185]

and He said:

فَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ مَا اسْتَطَعْتُمْ

Have taqwa of Allah as much as you are able [64:16]

[Tafsir al-Tabari 6/131]


A Description of the Munafiqoon Continue reading

Assorted Qur’an Benefits #21

What follows is a collection of benefits originally posted on our Facebook page and Telegram Channel in the first part of December 2017:

♦ Ibn Kathir’s Approach to the Qiraa’aat in his Tafsir

The great mufassir al-haafidh Ismaa’eel ibn Kathir explained the approach he took in his tafsir towards linguistic discussion and the qiraa’aat by writing:

 وفي جبريل وميكائيل لغات وقراءات ، تذكر في كتب اللغة والقراءات ، ولم نطول كتابنا هذا بسرد ذلك إلا أن يدور فهم المعنى عليه ، أو يرجع الحكم في ذلك إليه ، وبالله الثقة ، وهو المستعان . ـ

Regarding the words “Jibreel” and “Meekaa’eel” [c.f. 2:98], there are a number of linguistic issues and different recitations which are mentioned in the books of language and qiraa’aat. But we will not elongate this book of ours by going through these topics unless the meaning of an ayah centers around that or unless a legal ruling related to an ayah hinges on one of those things. In Allah do we place our trust, and it is from Him that we seek aid.”

[Tafsir ibn Kathir 1/343]


♦ Continuing Rewards

Allah says in surah al-Tin:

لَقَدْ خَلَقْنَا الْإِنسَانَ فِي أَحْسَنِ تَقْوِيمٍ * ثُمَّ رَدَدْنَاهُ أَسْفَلَ سَافِلِينَ * إِلَّا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ فَلَهُمْ أَجْرٌ غَيْرُ مَمْنُونٍ

We have certainly created man in the best form * then we return him to the lowest of the low * Except for those who believe and do righteous good deeds – for them there is a reward without interruption [95:4-6]

Commenting on these latter two ayaat in his book of tafsir, ibn al-Jawzi wrote:

 وقال النخعي: إذا بلغ المؤمن من الكبر ما يعجز عن العمل كتب له ما كان يعمل، وهو قوله تعالى: فلهم أجر غير ممنون وقال ابن قتيبة: المعنى: إلا الذين آمنوا في وقت القوة والقدرة، فإنهم حال الكبر غير منقوصين وإن عجزوا عن الطاعات، لأن الله تعالى علم أنهم لو لم يسلبهم القوة لم ينقطعوا عن أفعال الخير، فهو يجري لهم أجر ذلك . ـ

Ibrahim al-Nakaa’i said: When a believer reaches old age and is no longer able to perform good deeds, what he used to do will continue to be written for him. This is as Allah says, “For them there is a reward without interruption”. Continue reading

Assorted Qur’an Benefits #20

What follows is a collection of various benefits originally posted on our Facebook page during August, September, October and November of 2017:

♦ The Knowledge of ‘Abdullah ibn Mas’ood

Sheikh Muhammad al-Ameen al-Shinqitee mentioned the following narration in part of his tafsir:

وقال ابن مسعود : إذا حدثتكم بحديث أنبأتكم بتصديقه من كتاب الله . أخرجه ابن أبي حاتم . ـ

ibn Mas’ood said, “If any of you were to narrate a hadeeth to me, I can tell you something from Allah’s Book which affirms it.” This was reported by ibn Abi Haatim.

[Adhwaa’ al-Bayaan 2/429]


♦ The Qur’an is the Spring of the Hearts

Imam al-Qurtubi mentioned the following quote in the last part of his tafsir of surah al-Shooraa [42]:

وكان مالك بن دينار يقول : يا أهل القرآن ، ماذا زرع القرآن في قلوبكم ؟ فإن القرآن ربيع القلوب كما أن الغيث ربيع الأرض . ـ

Malik ibn Dinar used to say, “O people of the Qur’an, what has the Qur’an produced in your hearts? For the Qur’an is the spring of the hearts, just as rain is the spring for the earth.”

[Jaami’ li-Ahkam al-Qur’an 16/53]


♦ Be Frequent in Seeking Allah’s Forgiveness

In part of his commentary on surah Aal ‘Imraan [03], Imam al-Qurtubi mentions the following words from the tabi’ee, Makhool: Continue reading

Assorted Qur’an Benefits #19

What follows is a collection of various benefits originally posted on our Facebook page during April, May, June and July of 2017:

♦ O Turner of the Hearts …

In his tafsir of surah Aal ‘Imraan, al-haafidh ibn Kathir mentioned the following narration:

قال ابن أبي حاتم : حدثنا عمرو بن عبد الله الأودي – وقال ابن جرير : حدثنا أبو كريب – قالا جميعا : حدثنا وكيع ، عن عبد الحميد بن بهرام ، عن شهر بن حوشب ، عن أم سلمة ، رضي الله عنها ، أن النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم كان يقول : ” يا مقلب القلوب ثبت قلبي على دينك ” ثم قرأ : ( ربنا لا تزغ قلوبنا بعد إذ هديتنا وهب لنا من لدنك رحمة إنك أنت الوهاب )

Ibn Abi Haatim recorded … that Umm Salamah said that the Prophet said, “O Turner of hearts, make my heart steady upon Your religion” and then he recited:

 رَبَّنَا لَا تُزِغْ قُلُوبَنَا بَعْدَ إِذْ هَدَيْتَنَا وَهَبْ لَنَا مِن لَّدُنكَ رَحْمَةً ۚ إِنَّكَ أَنتَ الْوَهَّابُ

Our Lord, do not let our hearts deviate after You have guided us, and grant us mercy from You. Truly, You are the Bestower. [3:8]

[Tafsir ibn Kathir 2/14]


♦ Fasting Combines All Types of Patience

Sheikh Muhammad ibn Saalih al-‘Uthaymeen made the following remarks:

الصيام صبر على طاعة الله، وصبر عن محارم الله، وصبر على أقدار الله المؤلمة من الجوع والعطش وضعف البدن والنفس؛ فقد اجتمعت فيه أنواع الصبر الثلاثة، وتحقق أن يكون الصائم من الصابرين، وقد قال الله تعالى: {إنما يوفى الصابرون أجرهم بغير حساب} [الزمر:10].ـ

Fasting is exercising patience in the obedience of Allah, and it is also exercising patience against the prohibitions of Allah, and it is also exercising patience in the face of those painful things – such as hurt, thirst, weakness of body and soul – which Allah has ordained.

So all three types of sabr – steadfast patience – are combined in fasting, and so the fasting person becomes one of the sabiroon. And Allah has said:

إِنَّمَا يُوَفَّى الصَّابِرُونَ أَجْرَهُم بِغَيْرِ حِسَابٍ

Only those who are patient shall receive their rewards in full, without reckoning. [39:10]

[Majmoo’ Fataawaa wa Rasaa’il al-‘Uthaymeen 20/200]


♦ Allah Responds to the Supplication of the Distressed Continue reading

Assorted Qur’an Benefits #18

We continue our monthly series of “Assorted Qur’an Benefits”. What follows is a collection of various benefits originally posted on our Facebook page during January, February, and March of 2017:

♦ Act According to What You Know

In part of a brief advice directed to the students of the University of Madinah, sheikh ‘Abd al-‘Aziz bin Baaz mentioned:

قد جاء في بعض الآثار( من عمل بما علم أورثه الله علم ما لم يعلم ) وشاهد هذا في كتاب الله سبحانه قوله تعالى : وَالَّذِينَ اهْتَدَوْا زَادَهُمْ هُدًى وَآتَاهُمْ تَقْوَاهُمْ وقوله سبحانه : وَيَزِيدُ اللَّهُ الَّذِينَ اهْتَدَوْا هُدًى

It has come in some statements of the salaf that “whoever acts according to what he knows, Allah will endow him with knowledge which he does not know”. And a supporting evidence for this in Allah’s Book is His statement:

 وَالَّذِينَ اهْتَدَوْا زَادَهُمْ هُدًى وَآتَاهُمْ تَقْوَاهُمْ

And those who are guided – He increases them in guidance and gives them their taqwaa. [47:17]

and His statement:

وَيَزِيدُ اللَّـهُ الَّذِينَ اهْتَدَوْا هُدًى

And Allah increases those who were guided in guidance. [19:76]

[Taken from the sheikh’s website here: https://binbaz.org.sa/article/136]


♦ Allah Gives Them Their Taqwa

Allah says in surah Muhammad:

وَالَّذِينَ اهْتَدَوْا زَادَهُمْ هُدًى وَآتَاهُمْ تَقْوَاهُمْ

And those who are guided – He increases them in guidance and gives them their taqwa [47:17]

Commenting on this in his tafsir, Imam al-Baghawi wrote:

ـ( وآتاهم تقواهم ) وفقهم للعمل بما أمرهم به ، وهو التقوى

And He gives them their taqwa” – meaning: He grants them the accord to act according to what He has commanded them to do, and that is al-taqwa.

[Tafsir al-Baghawi 7/284] Continue reading

Assorted Qur’an Benefits #17

What follows is a collection of various benefits originally posted on our Facebook page during November and December of 2016:

♦ The People of the Hellfire Will Wish for Death

In surah al-Haqqah, Allah describes the situation of the disbelievers on the Day of Judgement, including that they would say:

 وَأَمَّا مَنْ أُوتِيَ كِتَابَهُ بِشِمَالِهِ فَيَقُولُ يَا لَيْتَنِي لَمْ أُوتَ كِتَابِيَهْ * وَلَمْ أَدْرِ مَا حِسَابِيَهْ * يَا لَيْتَهَا كَانَتِ الْقَاضِيَةَ

But as for the one who is given his record in his left hand, he will say, “Oh I wish I had not been given my record * And had not known what my account is * Oh, I wish that my death had been the end of it all.” (69:25-27)

The famous taabi’ee Qatadah explained this last ayah by saying:

 وقال قتادة : تمنى الموت ، ولم يكن شيء في الدنيا أكره إليه منه . ـ

He will wish for death, while in this worldly life there is nothing which he dislikes more than death.

[Tafsir ibn Kathir 8/216. Also found in Tafsir al-Tabari 28/588 and Tafsir al-Baghawi 8/213]


♦ The Importance of Safety and Security

Towards the end of surah Ibrahim, Allah informs us of a long supplication that Ibrahim made concerning his family members whom he had left in Mecca. Ibrahim began his supplication by saying:

رَبِّ اجْعَلْ هَـٰذَا الْبَلَدَ آمِنًا وَاجْنُبْنِي وَبَنِيَّ أَن نَّعْبُدَ الْأَصْنَامَ

My Lord, make this city secure and keep me and my sons away from worshipping idols (14:35)

Sheikh Muhammad al-Shawkaani commented on this by writing:

وقدم طلب الأمن على سائر المطالب المذكورة بعده ، لأنه إذا انتفى الأمن لم يفرغ الإنسان لشيء آخر من أمور الدين والدنيا

Ibrahim placed requesting safety and security before all the other requests that followed it because if safety and security are lost then people won’t be able to do anything else, neither religious matters nor worldly affairs.

[Fath al-Qadeer pg. 751] Continue reading

Assorted Qur’an Benefits #16

What follows is a collection of various benefits originally posted on our Facebook page during the months of September and October of 2016:

♦ Sharing in Punishment

Allah informs us about the punishment of the disbelievers in surah al-Zukhruf when He says:

 وَلَن يَنفَعَكُمُ الْيَوْمَ إِذ ظَّلَمْتُمْ أَنَّكُمْ فِي الْعَذَابِ مُشْتَرِكُونَ

And it will not benefit you on that day when you have done wrong that you are sharing in the punishment [43:39]

Sheikh Muhammad ibn Saalih al-‘Uthaymeen commented on this by writing:

وهذا يدل على أن اشتراك الناس في العذاب يخفف عليهم ، لكن في يوم القيامة لا ينفع هؤلاء اشتراكهم في العذاب

This indicates that sharing in punishment usually makes the punishment seem lighter for the people experiencing it, however on the Day of Resurrection this shared experience of punishment of theirs will not benefit them.

[Sharh Usool fee al-Tafsir pg. 343]


♦ Those Whom Allah Will Allow to Speak

In surah al-Naba’a, Allah describes the Day of Judgement by saying:

 يَوْمَ يَقُومُ الرُّوحُ وَالْمَلَائِكَةُ صَفًّا ۖ لَّا يَتَكَلَّمُونَ إِلَّا مَنْ أَذِنَ لَهُ الرَّحْمَـٰنُ وَقَالَ صَوَابًا

The Day that Ar-Ruh and the angels will stand forth in rows, none shall speak except him whom the al-Rahman has allowed, and who spoke what is right. [78:38]

Sheikh Muhammad al-Shawkaani commented on this ayah in his tafsir by writing: Continue reading

Assorted Qur’an Benefits #15

What follows is a collection of benefits originally posted on our Facebook page during August and September of 2016, a period which coincided with the first ten days of Dhu’l-Hijjah and the Hajj:

♦ Restraining Oneself from Base Desires

Allah says in surah al-Naazi’aat:

 وَأَمَّا مَنْ خَافَ مَقَامَ رَبِّهِ وَنَهَى النَّفْسَ عَنِ الْهَوَىٰ * فَإِنَّ الْجَنَّةَ هِيَ الْمَأْوَىٰ

But as for him who feared standing before his Lord, and restrained himself from desires. * Verily, Paradise will be his abode. [79:40-41]

Commenting on this in his tafsir, Imam al-Baghawi wrote:

عن المحارم التي تشتهيها ، قال مقاتل : هو الرجل يهم بالمعصية فيذكر مقامه للحساب فيتركها

He restrained himself from the forbidden matters which he desired.

Muqatil said: This is a man who was intending to perform an act of disobedience but then he remembered his appointment for the recompense of his deeds and so abandoned doing that act.”

[Tafsir al-Baghawi 8/331]


And If They Turn Away …

In surah al-Maa’idah, Allah instructs His Messenger: Continue reading

The Makki and Madani Surahs in Chronological Order: al-Suyooti

In part of his celebrated manual of the Qur’anic sciences, Imam Jalal al-Deen al-Suyooti dedicated one part of his chapter on the Makki and Madani revelation to presenting several narrations from the salaf listing which surahs are Makki or Madani and the chronological order of their revelation. As you will see, we have organized some of these narrations into charts in an effort to better present this information:

وقد ورد عن ابن عباس وغيره عد المكي والمدني . وأنا أسوق ما وقع لي من ذلك ، ثم أعقبه بتحرير ما اختلف فيه . ـ

Some material has been transmitted from ibn ‘Abbaas and others listing the Makki and Madani surahs. I will start with what I have come across on this topic and then follow that up with some comments where differences occurred[1].

قال ابن سعد في الطبقات : أنبأنا الواقدي ، حدثني قدامة بن موسى ، عن أبي سلمة الحضرمي ، سمعت ابن عباس قال : سألت أبي بن كعب عما نزل من القرآن بالمدينة ؟ فقال : نزل بها سبع وعشرون سورة ، وسائرها بمكة . ـ

Ibn Sa’d mentioned in his al-Tabaqaat: … that Abu Salamah al-Hadhrami said: I heard ibn ‘Abbaas say: I asked Ubay ibn Ka’b about which surahs of the Qur’an were sent down in al-Madinah. He said, “Twenty-nine surahs were revealed there, and the rest were revealed in Mecca.”

وقال أبو جعفر النحاس في كتابه ” الناسخ والمنسوخ ” : حدثني يموت بن المزرع ، حدثنا أبو حاتم سهل بن محمد السجستاني ، أنبأنا أبو عبيدة معمر بن المثنى ، حدثنا يونس بن حبيب : سمعت أبا عمرو بن العلاء يقول : سألت مجاهدا عن تلخيص آي القرآن ، المدني من المكي ، فقال : سألت ابن عباس ، عن ذلك فقال : ـ [ ص: 57 ] سورة الأنعام : نزلت بمكة جملة واحدة ، فهي مكية إلا ثلاث آيات منها نزلن بالمدينة : قل تعالوا أتل [ 151 – 153 ] إلى تمام الآيات الثلاث ، وما تقدم من السور مدنيات . ـ ونزلت بمكة سورة الأعراف ويونس وهود ويوسف والرعد وإبراهيم والحجر والنحل . سوى ثلاث آيات من آخرها فإنهن نزلن بين مكة والمدينة ، في منصرفه من أحد . وسورة بني إسرائيل والكهف ومريم وطه والأنبياء والحج ، سوى ثلاث آيات هذان خصمان [ 19 – 21 ] إلى تمام الآيات الثلاث ، فإنهن نزلن بالمدينة . ـ وسورة المؤمنون والفرقان وسورة الشعراء ، سوى خمس آيات من آخرها نزلن بالمدينة : والشعراء يتبعهم الغاوون [ 224 ] إلى آخرها . ـ وسورة النمل والقصص والعنكبوت والروم ولقمان ، سوى ثلاث آيات منها نزلن بالمدينة : ولو أنما في الأرض من شجرة أقلام [ 27 – 29 ] إلى تمام الآيات . ـ وسورة السجدة ، سوى ثلاث آيات أفمن كان مؤمنا كمن كان فاسقا [ 18 – 20 ] إلى تمام الآيات الثلاث . ـ وسورة سبأ وفاطر ويس والصافات وص والزمر ، سوى ثلاث آيات نزلن بالمدينة في وحشي قاتل حمزة ياعبادي الذين أسرفوا [ 53 ] إلى تمام الثلاث آيات . ـ والحواميم السبع وق والذاريات والطور والنجم والقمر والرحمن والواقعة والصف والتغابن إلا آيات من آخرها نزلن بالمدينة . ـ والملك ون والحاقة وسأل وسورة نوح والجن والمزمل إلا آيتين إن ربك يعلم أنك تقوم [ 20 ] . ـ والمدثر إلى آخر القرآن إلا إذا زلزلت و إذا جاء نصر الله و قل هو الله أحد و قل أعوذ برب الفلق و قل أعوذ برب الناس فإنهن مدنيات . ـ ونزل بالمدينة سورة الأنفال وبراءة والنور والأحزاب وسورة محمد والفتح والحجرات والحديد وما بعدها إلى التحريم . ـ

In his book al-Naasikh wa’l-Mansookh, Abu Ja’far al-Nahhaas said: … that Abu ‘Amr ibn al-‘Alaa’[2] said: I asked Mujahid to give me a general outline of the Qur’an – which parts were Madani and which parts were Makki, so he replied: I asked ibn ‘Abbaas about that and he said:

○ Surah al-An’aam (06) was revealed all at once. It is Makki except for three ayaat which were revealed in al-Madinah:

قُلْ تَعَالَوْا أَتْلُ

Say: Come, I will recite … [6:151-153]

until the end of those three ayaat.

○ And the surahs which came before al-An’aam were madani surahs[3].

○ Surah al-A’raaf (07), Yunus (10), Hud (11), Yusuf (12), al-Ra’d (13), Ibrahim (14), al-Hijr (15), and al-Nahl (16) were all revealed in Mecca, except for the last three ayaat of surah al-Nahl [16:126-128] which were revealed between Mecca and al-Madinah as the Prophet was departing from the Battle of al-Uhud. Continue reading

Assorted Qur’an Benefits #14

What follows is a collection of benefits originally posted on our Facebook page during July 2016:

The Reminder Benefits the Believers

In part of his tafsir of surah al-Ghaashiyah, sheikh Muhammad ibn Saalih al-‘Uthaymeen mentioned the following admonition:

ونقول إذا رأيت قلبك لا يتذكر بذكرى فاتهمه ؛ لأن الله يقول : {فَإِنَّ الذِّكْرَىٰ تَنفَعُ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ} [الذاريات ٥٥] ، فإذا ذُكرت ولم تجد من قلبك تأثرا وانتفاعا فاتمم نفسك ، واعلم أن فيك نقص إيمان ؛ لأن لو كان إيمانك كاملا لانتفعت بالذكرى ؛ لأن الذكرى لابد أن تنفع المؤمنين . ـ

And we say: if you observe that your heart is not reminded by a reminder then be concerned, for Allah says,

فَإِنَّ الذِّكْرَىٰ تَنفَعُ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ

indeed, the reminder benefits the believers [51:55]

So if it is reminded and you do not find your heart being affected or benefiting, then be concerned for yourself and know that you have some deficiency of eemaan. For if your eemaan were complete then you would have benefited from the reminder, because a reminder will certainly benefit the believers.”

[al-Tafseer al-Thameen l’il-‘Alaamah al-‘Uthaymeen 14/470]


Your Lord is Almighty, Merciful

Sheikh ‘Abd al-Rahman al-Sa’di made the following incisive point in his work on the principles of Tafsir: Continue reading