Saturday, July 10, 2010

Surah Al Baqarah Ayahs 92-101

In the last post, we were on the topic of how the Bani Israel denied Muhammad (SAW) as the Messenger, even though it was clear to them about who it was.

Ayah 92 continues with the stories of the Bani Israel, "And indeed Mûsa (Moses) came to you with clear proofs, yet you worshipped the calf after he left, and you were Zâlimûn (polytheists and wrong-doers)". If we remember the story, the Bani Israel asked Musa (AS) to ask Allah to give them a Book which they can follow. When Musa (AS) had gone to do that, some of these people started worshiping a calf. Musa (AS) freed them from Pharaoh by the grace of Allah, and he had a magic staff that would turn into a snake or produce water. Allah had given him all these signs to prove to the people that he is a true Messenger. However, soon after he left to get the Torah, they started worshiping something apart from Allah (SWT).

Then we move on to the next example in ayah 93, "And (remember) when We took your covenant and We raised above you the Mount (saying), "Hold firmly to what We have given you and hear (Our Word). They said, "We have heard and disobeyed." And their hearts absorbed (the worship of) the calf because of their disbelief. Say: "Worst indeed is that which your faith enjoins on you if you are believers." When Musa (AS) brought them the Torah, the Bani Israel said that some of the rulings are too difficult, and so chose what to follow as they pleased. This is when the angels lifted Mt. Sinai over their heads to warn them. That is only when they submitted to the Book, although still not completely. Allah tells them to judge their faith by seeing the result of their iman. We, as well, should question ourselves about our iman if we don't see results like praying, reading the Quran etc.

The Bani Israel used to say that Paradise is exclusively for them, and not anyone else. Allah responds to this by saying, "Say to (them): "If the home of the Hereafter with Allâh is indeed for you specially and not for others, of mankind, then long for death if you are truthful." What is being said to them here is that if they are certain that Jannah is for them, then they should wish for death.

Ayah 95 continues, "But they will never long for it because of what their hands have sent before them (i.e. what they have done). And Allâh is All-Aware of the Zâlimûn (polytheists and wrong-doers)" The people knew that if they had wished for death, Allah would have finished them off right then and there. They knew that they were just making excuses to not believe in the Prophet (SAW), because they desired this world. This was their primary disease.

The next ayah claims, "And verily, you will find them (the Jews) the greediest of mankind for life and (even greedier) than those who ascribe partners to Allâh (and do not believe in Resurrection - Majus, pagans, and idolaters). Everyone of them wishes that he could be given a life of a thousand years. But the grant of such life will not save him even a little from (due) punishment. And Allâh is All-Seer of what they do." It is essential to not get completely involved in this world, and remember Allah (SWT) and the Hereafter, otherwise, there will be disconnection with Him.

Another thing the Bani Israel would protest against was the fact that Jibrael (AS) was given the duty of conveying Allah's message to the Prophet (SAW). Previously, all of the punishments they had to go through for being disobedient were via Jibrael (AS), and they said that they will not believe in the Quran because it will cause them more problems. They even went to the extent of saying that Mikael (AS) should have been chosen for this task, and he is the angel of rain and mercy. Allah (SWT) replies, "Say (O Muhammad Peace be upon him ): "Whoever is an enemy to Jibrael (Gabriel) (let him die in his fury), for indeed he has brought it (this Qur'ân) down to your heart by Allâh's Permission, confirming what came before it [i.e. the Taurât (Torah) and the Injeel (Gospel)] and guidance and glad tidings for the believers." The Quran is not a punishment, it's a guidance for them.

"Whoever is an enemy to Allâh, His Angels, His Messengers, Jibrael (Gabriel) and Mikael (Michael), then verily, Allâh is an enemy to the disbelievers." The Bani Israel were trying to make excuses because of the love for this world. In the next ayah it says, "And indeed We have sent down to you manifest Ayât (these Verses of the Qur'ân which inform in detail about the news of the Jews and their secret intentions, etc.), and none disbelieve in them but Fâsiqûn (those who rebel against Allâh's Command)." This comes to show that only the sinners disbelieve, as it blinds people. The signs were clear, but they did not see it. Sin is a blinder in the deen. People become blinded in many ways. For example, a man takes bribes in order to raise his family, and doesn't see it as a sin. This is not permissible, and we shouldn't make excuses like these in our lives. When we see a mistake in our lives, we should be very quick to thank Allah (SWT) for opening our eyes to it, and that will cause our hearts to open up more and accept our mistakes as flaws.

Ayah 100 and 101 continue, "Is it not (the case) that every time they make a covenant, some party among them throw it aside? Nay! (the truth) is most of them believe not. And when there came to them a Messenger from Allâh (i.e. Muhammad Peace be upon him ) confirming what was with them, a party of those who were given the Scripture threw away the Book of Allâh behind their backs as if they did not know!" This is all due to the disease of attachment to this world. If our hearts long for the deen, then Allah will remove duniya from the heart and fill it with the deen. The heart is always filled with something, either deen or duniya. It's up to us what we choose to fill it with.

May Allah give us the tawfiq to distance ourselves from the love of this world, and use the world instead as a tool for getting closer to the deen.

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