وَ اِذۡ قُلۡنَا لَکَ اِنَّ رَبَّکَ اَحَاطَ بِالنَّاسِ ؕ وَ مَا جَعَلۡنَا الرُّءۡیَا الَّتِیۡۤ اَرَیۡنٰکَ اِلَّا فِتۡنَۃً لِّلنَّاسِ وَ الشَّجَرَۃَ الۡمَلۡعُوۡنَۃَ فِی الۡقُرۡاٰنِ ؕ وَ نُخَوِّفُہُمۡ ۙ فَمَا یَزِیۡدُہُمۡ اِلَّا طُغۡیَانًا کَبِیۡرًا ﴿٪۶۱﴾
وَإِذۡ قُلۡنَا لَكَ إِنَّ رَبَّكَ أَحَاطَ بِٱلنَّاسِۚ وَمَا جَعَلۡنَا ٱلرُّءۡيَا ٱلَّتِيٓ أَرَيۡنَٰكَ إِلَّا فِتۡنَةٗ لِّلنَّاسِ وَٱلشَّجَرَةَ ٱلۡمَلۡعُونَةَ فِي ٱلۡقُرۡءَانِۚ وَنُخَوِّفُهُمۡ فَمَا يَزِيدُهُمۡ إِلَّا طُغۡيَٰنٗا كَبِيرٗا
c. 17:2. (close)
1627A. The reference here is to the Vision mentioned in v. 2 of this Surah. In this Vision the Holy Prophet saw himself leading all other Prophets in Prayers in the Temple at Jerusalem which was the Qiblah of the Jews. The Vision implied that in some future time the followers of those Prophets would join the fold of Islam. This is what is meant by the words, thy Lord has decreed the ruin of this people. The general spread of Islam would follow in the wake of the worldwide disasters of which mention has been made in v. 59. (close)
1628. 'The cursed tree' seems to be the Jewish people who have been repeatedly mentioned in the Qur’an as having been cursed by God (5:14, 5:61, 5:65, 5:79). The curse of God has dogged the footsteps of these unfortunate people from the time of the Prophet David right down to our own time. This interpretation of the expression finds additional support from the fact that the present Surah particularly deals with the Israelites as its very name, Bani- Isra’il, suggests. The fact that the verse begins with a mention of the Vision in which the Holy Prophet saw himself leading the Israelite Prophets in Prayers in Jerusalem, the centre of the Jewish Faith, lends further support to the assumption that by 'cursed tree' is meant the Jewish people, the word Shajarah signifying a tribe. The verse speaks both of the Vision and the Jewish people (the accursed tree) to whom this Vision specially refers as 'a trial for men.'
The Jews have, throughout the ages, proved to be a source of much misery and distress for mankind, particularly for Muslims. (close)
a. 17:2. (close)
1990. Important Words:
احاط بالناس (has encompassed the people). احاط is derived from حاط. They say احاط به العدو i.e. the enemy surrounded him. احیط بفلان means, such a one was destroyed or his destruction drew near. احاط به علما means, he had a comprehensive or complete knowledge thereof, or he attained the utmost knowledge thereof. The Quranic expression ان ربک احاط بالناسmeans, verily thy Lord hath men in His grasp or power or hath destroyed them (Lane & Aqrab).
الشجرة الملعونة (the cursed tree). شجرة is the noun infinitive from شجر. They say شجر الامر بینھم i.e. the affair was or became confused or complicated so as to be a subject of disagreement or difference between them. شجرہ means, he tied it. شجرةmeans, a tree; the stock or origin of a man. They say ھو من شجرة طیبة i.e. he is of good stock or origin (Lane & Aqrab).
The reference in the words, When We said to thee, is to the Vision mentioned under v. 2 of this Surah. In that Vision the Holy Prophet saw himself leading all other Prophets in Prayers. The Vision implied that at some future time, the followers of those Prophets would join the fold of Islam. This is what is meant by the words, Thy Lord has encompassed the people. This general spread of Islam would follow in the wake of the worldwide disasters of which mention has been made in v. 59. The object of these disasters was to open the way for the propagation of Islam, to induce all men to rally round its banner and to demonstrate the futility of the present materialistic Western civilization to stand in its way. Some of these disasters have already taken place and others are waiting to shake the present order of things to its foundation.
The signs of these impending disasters are already in evidence everywhere in the world. They will be followed by conditions favourable to the general and widespread acceptance and expansion of Islam.
Commentators of the Quran have greatly differed as to what the expression الشجرة الملعونة (the accursed tree) means. According to some of them it means شجرة خبیثة (evil tree) mentioned in 14:27. The word خبیث (evil) meaning a thing devoid of all good is synonymous with ملعون (accursed) which means, far removed from good. But the word شجرةas shown under Important Words, also means, a family. According to this meaning of the word the expression الشجرة الملعونةappears to apply more appropriately to a people—the Jewish people—who have been repeatedly mentioned in the Quran as having been cursed by God (5:14, 61, 65, 79). The curse of God has dogged the footsteps of these unfortunate people from the time of the Prophet David right down to the present time. This interpretation of the expression finds additional support from the fact that the present Surah particularly deals with the Israelites as its very name, BaniIsra’il, suggests. The fact that the verse begins with a mention of the Vision in which the Holy Prophet saw himself leading the Israelite Prophets in Prayers in Jerusalem, the Centre of the Jewish Faith, lends further support to the assumption that by الشجرة الملعونة (cursed tree) is meant the Jewish people.
The verse speaks both of "the vision" and the Jewish people (the accursed tree) to whom that Vision specially refers as "a trial for men". The Jews have, throughout the ages, proved a source of much misery and distress for mankind, particularly for Muslims, under whose benign rule they have enjoyed more freedom and security than under any other people. The two World Wars have been the result directly or indirectly of the plots and machinations of the Jews. They led an organized opposition to the German people in the First Great War and the Second Great War was also the result of their widespread and highly organized propaganda against Hitler. In the Russian Revolution which, too, forms a part of the Divine punishment (v. 59) the Jews took a prominent part and some of its foremost leaders are Jews by blood. The Jewish machinations have now extended to Palestine and have turned this "land of the Prophets" into a veritable hot-bed of intrigue, murder and arson. But all their intrigues and efforts to go back to, and take possession of, Palestine, will meet with only temporary success because this country has been divinely decreed to remain in Muslim hands. (close)
وَ اِذۡ قُلۡنَا لِلۡمَلٰٓئِکَۃِ اسۡجُدُوۡا لِاٰدَمَ فَسَجَدُوۡۤا اِلَّاۤ اِبۡلِیۡسَ ؕ قَالَ ءَاَسۡجُدُ لِمَنۡ خَلَقۡتَ طِیۡنًا ﴿ۚ۶۲﴾
وَإِذۡ قُلۡنَا لِلۡمَلَـٰٓئِكَةِ ٱسۡجُدُواْ لِأٓدَمَ فَسَجَدُوٓاْ إِلَّآ إِبۡلِيسَ قَالَ ءَأَسۡجُدُ لِمَنۡ خَلَقۡتَ طِينٗا
a. 2:35; 7:12; 15:30, 31; 18:51; 20:117; 38:73-75. (close)
1629. The particle lam among other things means, "with." The expression li Adama may mean 'with Adam.' (close)
a. 2:35; 7:12; 15:30-31; 18:51; 20:117; 38:73-75. (close)
1991. Important Words:
لادم (to Adam). لام as حرف جارہ (Preposition) is used in about twenty-two senses, the most important of which are the following: (1) It is used in the sense of فی as in من لی i.e. who is or will be for me as my defender or surety? (2) in the sense of علی as in یخرون للاذقان سجدا i.e. they fall down prostrate upon their faces; (3) in the sense of بعد as in للیلة خلتi.e. after the night that has passed; (4) in the sense of لام عاقبة as in لدواللموت وابنواللخراب i.e. bear children that they should die and build houses that they should fall into ruins; (5) in the sense of الی as in اوحی له i.e. he revealed to him; (6) to express a right as in الحمد للّٰه و العزة لهi.e. all praise is for God and all honour is due to Him; and (7) in the sense of مع (with or in spite of) as in فلما تفرقنا کانی ومالکا لطول اجتماع لم نبت لیلة معا i.e. when we separated, I felt as if with (or in spite of) our having lived together for a long time, I and Malik had not lived together even for one night (Aqrab).
The particle ل possesses, as shown under Important Words, a vast variety of meanings one of which isمع (with). In the expression لادم (to Adam) the particle ل means, "with"; thus the whole sentence اسجدوا لادم may mean, "submit to God along with Adam".
In the previous verses reference was made to the transgressions of the Jews. In order to throw further light on the subject, the verse under comment cites the case of Adam by way of example. The Prophets of God have always met with strong opposition from disbelievers. Adam who was the first Prophet was also opposed by Iblis, who said that he was superior to him (Adam) and therefore could not render obedience to him. The same obstacle lay in the way of the Jews. They looked upon themselves as superior to the Holy Prophet and his people. They were obsessed with the idea that, being the progeny of Isaac, all the blessings promised to Abraham were to be inherited by them alone to the exclusion of their cousins, the children of Ishmael. This false and foolish notion proved a stumbling block in the way of their accepting the Holy Prophet. (close)
قَالَ اَرَءَیۡتَکَ ہٰذَا الَّذِیۡ کَرَّمۡتَ عَلَیَّ ۫ لَئِنۡ اَخَّرۡتَنِ اِلٰی یَوۡمِ الۡقِیٰمَۃِ لَاَحۡتَنِکَنَّ ذُرِّیَّتَہٗۤ اِلَّا قَلِیۡلًا ﴿۶۳﴾
قَالَ أَرَءَيۡتَكَ هَٰذَا ٱلَّذِي كَرَّمۡتَ عَلَيَّ لَئِنۡ أَخَّرۡتَنِ إِلَىٰ يَوۡمِ ٱلۡقِيَٰمَةِ لَأَحۡتَنِكَنَّ ذُرِّيَّتَهُۥٓ إِلَّا قَلِيلٗا
b. 7:13; 15:34; 38:77. (close)
1630. By "resurrection" is here meant the spiritual resurrection which is experienced by every believer when his faith becomes perfect and Satan ceases to exercise control over him. (close)
a. 7:17, 18; 15:40. (close)
1631. Whether or not Satan has succeeded in carrying out his threat in leading astray a vast majority of mankind is an important question which calls for an answer. A hurried and thoughtless glance over the state of good and evil in the world may lead one to the wrong conclusion that evil predominates over good in the world. But the truth is the other way about. If, for example, all the utterances of the greatest of liars were to be critically examined, the number of his truthful utterances will be found to be far exceeding his lies. Similarly, the number of the wicked people in the world is much smaller than that of the good and the virtuous people. The fact that wickedness attracts such wide notice in itself constitutes a proof of the fact that human nature is innately good and recoils at even a slight touch of evil. It is, therefore, wrong to suppose that Satan has succeeded in carrying his threat into actual fact. (close)
a. 7:13; 15:34; 38:77. (close)
b. 7:17-18; 15:40. (close)
1992. Important Words:
ارءیتک (what thinkest thou?) is derived from رای i.e. he saw with the eyes and means, hast thou considered? tell thou me, tell me; thinkest thou? or what thinkest thou? (Lane). See also 10:51.
لاحتنکن (I will most surely bring under my sway) is derived from حنک. They say حنک الفرس i.e. he put a rope in the mouth of the horse. احتنک الجراد الارض means, the locusts ate what was upon the land and consumed its herbage. احتنکه means, (1) he put a rope in his mouth and led him; (2) he took the whole of his property; and (3) he gained the mastery over him. The Quranic expression لاحتنکن ذریته means, I will assuredly extirpate his progeny; or I will assuredly incline his progeny to obey me, or I will assuredly gain the mastery over his progeny (Lane & Aqrab).
By "resurrection" is here meant not the great Resurrection that is to take place after death but the time when believers will have achieved success and disbelievers met with discomfiture.
It may also mean the spiritual resurrection which is experienced by every believer when his faith becomes perfect and Satan ceases to exercise control over him.
Whether or not Satan has succeeded in carrying out his threat in leading astray a vast majority of mankind is an important question which calls for an answer. A hurried and thoughtless glance over the state of good and evil in the world may lead one to the wrong conclusion that evil predominates in the world. But the truth is quite the reverse. If all the utterances of the greatest of liars were to be critically examined, the number of his truthful utterances will be found to be far exceeding his lies. So is the case with other evils. A great majority of people in the world are disposed to be good and virtuous. They commit moral excesses only in the heat of passion. Similarly, the number of the wicked people in the world is much smaller than that of the good and the virtuous. The fact that wickedness attracts such wide notice in itself constitutes proof positive of the fact that human nature is innately good and recoils at even a slight touch of evil. It is therefore wrong to suppose that Satan has succeeded in carrying his threat into actual fact.
The dialogue described here and in other verses of the Quran as having taken place between God and Satan never actually took place. It is only a representation of the state of things existing in the world. See also 2:35; 7:13-19 & 15:28-29. (close)
قَالَ اذۡہَبۡ فَمَنۡ تَبِعَکَ مِنۡہُمۡ فَاِنَّ جَہَنَّمَ جَزَآؤُکُمۡ جَزَآءً مَّوۡفُوۡرًا ﴿۶۴﴾
قَالَ ٱذۡهَبۡ فَمَن تَبِعَكَ مِنۡهُمۡ فَإِنَّ جَهَنَّمَ جَزَآؤُكُمۡ جَزَآءٗ مَّوۡفُورٗا
b. 7:19; 15:43, 44; 38:86. (close)
a. 7:19; 15:43-44; 38:86. (close)
The verse shows that the punishment of Hell will be mental and not physical. Punishment can suit every individual case only if it is mental. No two men’s mental condition is exactly alike, and if punishment be external, the same punishment cannot suit every case. It can do so only if it be mental and everybody should receive punishment according to the condition of his mind. Just as all kinds of trees receive their sustenance from the earth according to their particular needs and natures, similarly all sinners will suffer the torment of Hell according to their mental condition. (close)
وَ اسۡتَفۡزِزۡ مَنِ اسۡتَطَعۡتَ مِنۡہُمۡ بِصَوۡتِکَ وَ اَجۡلِبۡ عَلَیۡہِمۡ بِخَیۡلِکَ وَ رَجِلِکَ وَ شَارِکۡہُمۡ فِی الۡاَمۡوَالِ وَ الۡاَوۡلَادِ وَ عِدۡہُمۡ ؕ وَ مَا یَعِدُہُمُ الشَّیۡطٰنُ اِلَّا غُرُوۡرًا ﴿۶۵﴾
وَٱسۡتَفۡزِزۡ مَنِ ٱسۡتَطَعۡتَ مِنۡهُم بِصَوۡتِكَ وَأَجۡلِبۡ عَلَيۡهِم بِخَيۡلِكَ وَرَجِلِكَ وَشَارِكۡهُمۡ فِي ٱلۡأَمۡوَٰلِ وَٱلۡأَوۡلَٰدِ وَعِدۡهُمۡۚ وَمَا يَعِدُهُمُ ٱلشَّيۡطَٰنُ إِلَّا غُرُورًا
c. 7:18. (close)
1632. The verse describes the three devices that are adopted by the sons of darkness to entice men away from the right way: (1) They try to intimidate the poor and the weak by holding out threats of violence to them. (2) They use more drastic measures against those who are not frightened by verbal threats of violence by forming alliances against them and making a concerted attack upon them and persecuting and oppressing them in every way. (3) They seek to entice away the powerful and the more influential by offering to make them their leaders if only they cease to support the cause of truth. (close)
a. 4:121; 14:23. (close)
a. 7:18. (close)
b. 4:121; 14:23. (close)
1994. Important Words:
استفزز (entice thou) is derived from فز which means, he was or became frightened. استفزmeans, it (fear) excited him to lightness, unsteady-ness; or it unsettled him; he incited or excited him to be promptly obedient and submissive to him; he deceived or beguiled him so as to cast him into destruction; he expelled him from his land; he slew him. The Quranic expression واستفزز من استطعت منھم بصوتک means, and excite thou to lightness and unsteadiness or unsettle thou whom thou canst with thy voice. And the expression وان کادوا لیستفزونک من الارض means, and verily they were near to unsettling thee from the land or, some say, they were near to frightening thee so as to excite thee to promptness of flight from the land (Lane & Aqrab).
This verse shows that man is by nature good. It is only when he falls a victim to satanic influences that he gives up the path of virtue for the ways of sin and iniquity. This Islamic conception of human nature is in striking contrast with that of Christianity according to which man is evil by nature and Jesus alone can redeem him from his original sin.
The verse describes the three kinds of devices that are adopted by the sons of darkness to entice men away from the right way: (1) They try to intimidate the poor and the weak by holding out threats of violence to them. This is the significance of the words, And entice…with thy voice. (2) They use more drastic measures against those who are not frightened away by verbal threats of violence by forming alliances against them and making a concerted attack upon them and persecuting and oppressing them in every way. This is the sense of the words, urge against them thy horsemen and footmen. (3) They seek to entice away the powerful and the more influential among the followers of a Prophet by offering to make them their leaders if only they give up his cause.
All these measures and stratagems have been adopted by the enemies of truth against the Prophets of God and their followers throughout the ages. But they have never succeeded in arresting or retarding the progress of truth. (close)
اِنَّ عِبَادِیۡ لَیۡسَ لَکَ عَلَیۡہِمۡ سُلۡطٰنٌ ؕ وَ کَفٰی بِرَبِّکَ وَکِیۡلًا ﴿۶۶﴾
إِنَّ عِبَادِي لَيۡسَ لَكَ عَلَيۡهِمۡ سُلۡطَٰنٞۚ وَكَفَىٰ بِرَبِّكَ وَكِيلٗا
b. 15:41; 38:84. (close)
1633. Man is amenable to the enticements of Satan so long as he is not "resurrected," i.e. so long as his faith does not attain its full stature. (close)
a. 15:41; 38:84. (close)
The verse purports to say that man is amenable to the enticement of Satan so long as he is not "resurrected" i.e. as long as his faith does not attain its full stature. The verse also teaches man the secret of becoming safe from the attacks of Satan. It is that he should give himself up wholly to the care and protection of God and, instead of depending upon his own resources and efforts, should rely upon Him alone, for Satan can cause no harm to one who is under the guardianship of God. (close)
رَبُّکُمُ الَّذِیۡ یُزۡجِیۡ لَکُمُ الۡفُلۡکَ فِی الۡبَحۡرِ لِتَبۡتَغُوۡا مِنۡ فَضۡلِہٖ ؕ اِنَّہٗ کَانَ بِکُمۡ رَحِیۡمًا ﴿۶۷﴾
رَّبُّكُمُ ٱلَّذِي يُزۡجِي لَكُمُ ٱلۡفُلۡكَ فِي ٱلۡبَحۡرِ لِتَبۡتَغُواْ مِن فَضۡلِهِۦٓۚ إِنَّهُۥ كَانَ بِكُمۡ رَحِيمٗا
c. 14:33; 22:66; 45:13. (close)
b. 14:33; 22:66; 45:13. (close)
The verse points out that all amenities of life are God’s gifts bestowed upon man, although they are not always recognized or appreciated by man as such. For example, the use of ships has made interaction possible between the dwellers of the main lands and the islands, who would have remained permanently isolated from each other without them.
There is also in the verse an implied reference to the fact that Islam will spread throughout the world on land and sea and for this purpose sea-going vessels, which are a great Divine blessing, will play a most important part. It is worthy of note that Muslims in the heyday of their glory were great sailors and navigators. The discovery of the sea-route to India was due to the good offices of an Arab sailor who guided some wandering Portuguese ships from the coast of Africa to the shores of India. (close)
وَ اِذَا مَسَّکُمُ الضُّرُّ فِی الۡبَحۡرِ ضَلَّ مَنۡ تَدۡعُوۡنَ اِلَّاۤ اِیَّاہُ ۚ فَلَمَّا نَجّٰٮکُمۡ اِلَی الۡبَرِّ اَعۡرَضۡتُمۡ ؕ وَ کَانَ الۡاِنۡسَانُ کَفُوۡرًا ﴿۶۸﴾
وَإِذَا مَسَّكُمُ ٱلضُّرُّ فِي ٱلۡبَحۡرِ ضَلَّ مَن تَدۡعُونَ إِلَّآ إِيَّاهُۖ فَلَمَّا نَجَّىٰكُمۡ إِلَى ٱلۡبَرِّ أَعۡرَضۡتُمۡۚ وَكَانَ ٱلۡإِنسَٰنُ كَفُورًا
d. 10:13; 11:10, 11; 23:65; 30:34; 39:9; 41:50-52; 70:21, 22. (close)
1634. Such is the nature of man that when he is in distress he becomes humble and prays to God and promises and vows to lead a virtuous life. But once he is out of danger he is as arrogant and boastful as ever. (close)
a. 10:13; 11:10-11; 23:65; 30:34; 39:9; 41:50-52; 70:21-22. (close)
Such is the nature of man that when he is in distress, he becomes humble and prays to God and promises and vows to lead a virtuous life if he were to regain his lost peace of mind. But when the danger is over, he is as arrogant and boastful as ever. The verse, in fact, embodies a warning for Muslims that they should not forget God in their days of prosperity so that He may not forget them in their time of adversity. (close)
اَفَاَمِنۡتُمۡ اَنۡ یَّخۡسِفَ بِکُمۡ جَانِبَ الۡبَرِّ اَوۡ یُرۡسِلَ عَلَیۡکُمۡ حَاصِبًا ثُمَّ لَا تَجِدُوۡا لَکُمۡ وَکِیۡلًا ﴿ۙ۶۹﴾
أَفَأَمِنتُمۡ أَن يَخۡسِفَ بِكُمۡ جَانِبَ ٱلۡبَرِّ أَوۡ يُرۡسِلَ عَلَيۡكُمۡ حَاصِبٗا ثُمَّ لَا تَجِدُواْ لَكُمۡ وَكِيلًا
e. 67:17, 18. (close)
b. 67:17-18. (close)
1998. Important Words:
حاصبا (violent sandstorm) is derived from حصب and حصبه means, he pelted him or pelted him with pebbles. They say حصبت الریح بالحصباء i.e. the wind cast or drove along small pebbles. حصب النار means, he kindled the fire. حصب (hasabun) means, a stone that is thrown; firewood. حاصبا means, a thrower or pelter of stones; a punishment from God; dust containing pebbles; pebbles cast about by the wind; small particles of snow and hail scattered about; a large number of men on foot. ریح حاصب means, a violent wind that raises, drives along or casts down pebbles from the sky; clouds or clouds casting down snow and hail (Lane & Aqrab).
The verse implies a prophetic allusion to the Battle of Badr which was yet to be fought. The Arabs, being an inland people, were very much afraid of the sea. It purports to warn the Meccan disbelievers that they were afraid of the sea but God could destroy them on land also. This happened on the battlefield of Badr where their power got a severe shaking.
The verse also seems to suggest to Muslims the benefits of sea-going, hinting that, since dangers at sea are no greater than those on land, why should they remain contented with life on land and not improve their commercial relations with other nations which is possible mainly through constant sea-voyaging? (close)
اَمۡ اَمِنۡتُمۡ اَنۡ یُّعِیۡدَکُمۡ فِیۡہِ تَارَۃً اُخۡرٰی فَیُرۡسِلَ عَلَیۡکُمۡ قَاصِفًا مِّنَ الرِّیۡحِ فَیُغۡرِقَکُمۡ بِمَا کَفَرۡتُمۡ ۙ ثُمَّ لَا تَجِدُوۡا لَکُمۡ عَلَیۡنَا بِہٖ تَبِیۡعًا ﴿۷۰﴾
أَمۡ أَمِنتُمۡ أَن يُعِيدَكُمۡ فِيهِ تَارَةً أُخۡرَىٰ فَيُرۡسِلَ عَلَيۡكُمۡ قَاصِفٗا مِّنَ ٱلرِّيحِ فَيُغۡرِقَكُم بِمَا كَفَرۡتُمۡ ثُمَّ لَا تَجِدُواْ لَكُمۡ عَلَيۡنَا بِهِۦ تَبِيعٗا
a. 67:18. (close)
a. 67:18. (close)
1999. Important Words:
قاصفا (storm-blast) is active participle from قصف. They say قصف الشیء i.e. he broke the thing. قصف البعیرmeans, the camel roared violently. قصف الرعد means, it thundered violently. ریح قاصف means, strong wind and رعد قاصف means, violent thunder (Aqrab).
It is strange that in fulfilment of the warning contained in this verse, some of the disbelievers were actually drowned in the Red Sea when they fled from Mecca after its conquest by the Holy Prophet. (close)