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      Tafseer - Explanation of the Qur'aan

Tafseer of Soorah al-Hujarat 

verses 1 to 3   |   verses 4 to 7   |   Verses 8 - 10

VERSE 4 - 
"Surely, most of those who call you out from behind the apartments have no sense."

Revelation- Allah revealed this verse when a group of Bedouins called out to the Messenger of Allah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) from behind his house, as was their custom among themselves, saying: "O Muhammad (sallallahu alaihi wasallam), verily my praise is sweet and my curse is bitter." The Messenger of Allah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) replied: "Only Allah is like that." [Musnad Ahmad, Tirmidhee]

Manners towards the Muslim leaders and Common Muslims

The act of Bedouins, though not intentional, was disrespect to the Messenger of Allah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam). However, the approach towards a Muslim leader should be respectful and his right to privacy must be honored. Likewise, to all Muslims, if one wants to visit a Muslim, the Islamic etiquettes instruct him to knock on the door up to three times, if there is no reply then he should leave. The Messenger of Allah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) said: "If any of you seeks permission (to enter a house) and no permission is granted, he should return." [Saheeh al-Bukharee and Saheeh Muslim]

VERSE 5 - 
"And if they were patient until you came out to them, it would have been better for them but Allah is oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful."

In this verse Allah explains the correct etiquettes of visiting a Muslim leader, while emphasizing on Patience that if the Bedouins had waited patiently until the Messenger of Allah himself came out, then it would have been better for them. 

Sabr (Patience) 
Patience holds great virtues in Islam and Allah has emphasized Patience with great stress. He said: "…And be patient and preserving: for Allah is with those who patiently preserve." [Soorah al-Anfal (8): 46]

Linguistically 'Sabr' means detain, refrain and stop. In the Islamic terminology, 'Sabr' means to stop oneself from despairing and panicking. To stop one's tongue from complaining and hands from striking faces and tearing clothes at times of grief and stress. 

Patience can be of two types, either by choice or without choice, for example: Patience without choice such as patiently bearing illness, cold or heat. Patience by choice would be refraining from that which Shari'ah has prohibited. Patience by choice is of higher virtue than the patience without choice.

Patience is made a condition of success and prosperity "O you who believe! Preserve in patience and guard your territory; and fear Allah; that you may prosper." [Soorah al-Imraan (3): 200]

Allah will reward them with blessings, mercy and guidance: "…but give glad tidings to those who patiently preserve who say, when afflicted with calamity: 'To Allah we belong and to Him is our return" They are those on whom (descend) blessings from their Lord, and Mercy and they are the ones that receive guidance." [Soorah al-Baqarah (2): 155-7]

And: "Those who patiently preserve will truly receive a reward without measure!" [Soorah az-Zumar (39): 10]

A Test for Mankind

Allah says: "(It is He) who created death and life to test which of you is best in deeds." 

He also said: "Be sure that We will test you with some fear, hunger, and loss of wealth, life or the fruits (of your efforts). So give glad tidings to the patient ones who say when disaster strikes them, 'Surely we belong to Allah and surely to Him we will return" [Soorah al-Baqarah (2): 155-6]

And: "He raised some of you over the other by varying degree to test you in what you were given." [ (6): 165]

However, Allah's test is fair towards His slaves, He said: "Allah does not burden a soul beyond his ability." [Soorah al-Baqarah (2): 286]

Moreover, He promised that: "Surely, with every difficulty comes ease." [Soorah al-Inshiraah (94): 5-6]

Then Allah closes the verse saying: "but Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful." Giving hope and way to the sinner to repent and ask forgiveness from His Lord, since Allah is Oft-Forgiving and Most Merciful to his slaves.

VERSE 6 - 
"O you who believe! If an unrighteous person comes to you with information, you should verify it or else you might inflict harm on a people in ignorance and then end up regretting what you have done."

Narrated Ibn Abbas (radhi allahu anhu) that "…Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) sent al-Waleeed ibn Uqbah (radhi allahu anhu) as a messenger to collect Zakaah from the Muslims (of Mustaliq tribe). However, on his way al-Waleed heard that a group from Banu Mustaliq had set out and he became afraid. He returned to the Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) and told him that al-Haarith (former king of Banu Mustaliq) refused to pay the Zakaah and threatened his life. 

The Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) became angry and sent a group of companions (radhi allahu anhu) to deal with him. The two groups met and returned to the Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wasallam). He (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) questioned al-Haarith: "Why did you refuse to pay Zakaah and tried to kill my messenger?" Al-Harith replied: "By Allah, Who sent you with the truth. I did not see him, nor did he come to me, and the only reason I came because I feared that your reason for not contacting me was due to Allah's displeasure with us. Thus, Allah revealed this verse confirming the statement of al-Haarith. 

Verification before Action

This verse designates the rule of verifying any information received through people of less certainty and doubtful character. Because instant and impulsive judgments might harm or grieve someone and such unintentional accusations cannot be erased even with great apology (sorrow). Thus, great care must be taken to verify such information.

Based on this ruling scholars have taken great pains in verifying any religious information, including the ahaadeeth, by means of attesting the chain of narrators, their good character and righteousness. Thus, preserving the authenticity of the Sunnah.

VERSE 7 - 
"And you should realize that Allah's Messenger (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) is amongst you. If he were to obey you in many of your affairs, you would be in difficulty. But Allah has endeared Eeman (faith) to you, beautified it in your hearts and made Kufr (disbelief), sin and disobedience hateful to you. Those are the rightly guided. A favor and a blessing from Allah and Allah is all-Knowing, all Wise."

Excellent example for Humanity 

Prophet Muhammad (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) - The life of Allah's Messenger (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) is the living example of the Qur'aan, since his speech and actions are divinely guided: "And surely there is for you in Allah's Messenger an excellent example." [(33): 21]

And with his (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) death the divine revelation ceased whilst completing the ultimate guide for a successful Islamic life, Allah said: "This Day I have perfected your religion for you, completed my Favor upon you and chosen for you Islam as the religion." [Soorah al-Maidah (5): 3]

Thus, Allah ordered the believers to hold Prophet Muhammad (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) in high regards and submit to his way saying: "And whatsoever the Messenger gives you take it and whatsoever he forbids refrain from it." [(59): 7]

Then Allah mentioned the aims and benefits of adhering to the guidance of Messenger (sallallahu alaihi wasallam); that he (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) is divinely guided and more knowledgeable of Allah and His religion than the believer. Moreover, He explains that if the Messenger was to follow man's desire then it would result in great difficulty, as He said in another verse: "…if the truth had been in accordance with their desires, verily the heavens and the earth and whosoever is therein would have been corrupted!" [Soorah al-Mu'minun (23): 71]

Thus, any religious act through which people seek closeness to Allah or a reward from Him should carry the approval of Allah's Messenger (sallallahu alaihi wasallam). Otherwise, it should be rejected. Because one who introduces new practices in the religion either claims to have more knowledge than the Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wasallam), or the guidance of Allah's Messenger is not complete. And the Messenger of Allah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) said: "Whosoever introduces in the religion of ours that which is not a part of it then it must be rejected." [Musnad Ahmad] 

After calling the believers to the obedience of Allah's Messenger (sallallahu alaihi wasallam), Allah informs that the believers are protected from the grave sin of Kufr, through establishing in them love for true Faith and hatred for disbelief. 

The Messenger of Allah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) said: "There are three qualities for which who is characterized with them will have experienced the sweetness of faith; he who loves a human being for Allah's sake alone and he who has a great hatred of returning to disbelief (Kufr) after Allah has rescued him from it as he has of being cast into the fire." [Saheeh al-Bukharee and Saheeh Muslim]

Love for Faith and hatred for disbelief is revealed through one's actions: the submission and obedience to Allah and His Messenger (sallallahu alaihi wasallam). And as Allah said: "Say (O Muhammad (sallallahu alaihi wasallam): If you love Allah then follow me and Allah will love you." [Soorah al-Imraan (3): 31]

This verse explains that love for Faith and hatred for Kufr, mentioned in the previous verse, is a Favor and Blessing from Allah, the Exalted. And He closes the verse with two great Attributes of Allah; the All-Knowing and All-Wise.

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