Tarjumatul Quran - Surah al-Safat [The Rows]: 89 - 139
Verse 89, 90: Some medieval scholars think that it was incorrect to say that: فَنَظَرَ نَظْرَةًۭ فِى ٱلنُّجُومِ فَقَالَ إِنِّى سَقِيمٌۭ [Then he cast a glance at the stars. Saying ‘I feel most unwell.'] The Prophet Abraham was not ill at all and it was just an excuse to end the argumentation. This is a totally wrong allegation because the word سَقِيمٌۭ carries a greater connotation of being indisposed and the Prophet Abraham was expressing his indisposition at the belief of his people in the stars. The word رَاغَ in verse Number 92 includes secret consultation. it means that he secretly evaded the eyes of the people and declared to the idols that 'Do you not eat? That means that you are dead because to eat is a sign of life' then he smashed up them into pieces with a mighty blow and as soon as the news spread the people came to him running while the Prophet Abraham was still present there. They then lit up a pyre and planned to burn the Prophet Abraham in it. But Allah the Almighty frustrated their plan. Verse Number 100 expresses what was seen and intended by the Prophet Abraham that although the Society turned soft following this incident but remained idolatrous so the Prophet Abraham decided to emigrate from this Godless town to another place where he can worship God in peace and before he left he prayed, not for a son but to be able to go to a village full of righteous people. Then Allah the Almighty gave him tidings of a pure and sturdy son and when he was mature he kept seeing a dream that he was slaughtering his son. The agreement and obeisance of the Prophet Ishmael is evidence of the high standard of his upbringing. Verse 114: The word ظَالِمٌ۬ (cruel) or zulm (cruelty) is not always used as condemnation without exception in The Holy Quran. When used in this sense it covers all categories of deviation from the right path. Yet, there are some exceptions where it is used to signify praiseworthiness. In: Then We give the Book for an inheritance to those of Our servants whom We chose. Some of them wronged their own souls, some of them take to the moderate course and some are excellent, in acts of goodness by the command of Allah. That is the greatest bounty. ('The Holy Quran'. Fatir: 33). It is evident that God has included amongst His chosen servants, such people as are لِّنَفۡسِهِ ظَالِمٌ۬ [‘wronged their own souls’] who treat themselves cruelly as they strive in the path of Allah. In the same category those belonging to the comparatively higher order are mentioned as مُّقۡتَصِدٌ۬ [‘taking the moderate course’] and بِٱلۡخَيۡرَٲتِ سَابِقُۢ [‘excellent, in acts of goodness’]. Similarly, to bring oneself to do good deeds requires a measure of harshness and cruelty to oneself during the early stages of spiritual struggle. Those who do it for the sake of God are evidently praiseworthy, yet they are spoken of as لِّنَفۡسِهِ ظَالِمٌ۬ (cruel to himself’). Verse 131: The scholars speak of 3 Elijahs. 'The Holy Quran' has placed no limit so it also includes the Elijah of the present era. The birth of these numerous Elijahs is attributed to the Prophet Abraham. In verse Number 135 'The Holy Quran' has comprehensively mentioned the meanings of the word أَهْلَ ['family']. It refutes the Shi'ite definition of أَهْلَ. In verse Number 139 Almighty God is drawing the attention of the readers of the Quran that you pass by the tombs of these people morning and evening so why not excavate and find out about them and derive a lesson [from your findings]? 10 March 1998. © The Tahir Archive / MTA International, 2016.
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