Friday, April 03, 2015

Tafseer Al-Baqara: 60-61 | Sheikh 'Ata Abu Al-Rashtah

Extract from the book 'At-Tayseer Fee Usool At-Tafseer' written by the Ameer of Hizb ut Tahrir, Sheikh Ata Ibn Khalil Abu Al-Rashtah.

Ayaah 60 and 61:
اسْتَسْقَى مُوسَى لِقَوْمِهِ فَقُلْنَا اضْرِب بِّعَصَاكَ الْحَجَرَ فَانفَجَرَتْ مِنْهُ اثْنَتَا عَشْرَةَ عَيْناً قَدْ عَلِمَ كُلُّ أُنَاسٍ مَّشْرَبَهُمْ كُلُواْ وَاشْرَبُواْ مِن رِّزْقِ اللَّهِ وَلاَ تَعْثَوْاْ فِي الأَرْضِ مُفْسِدِينَ (60)
(60) And when Musa was looking for water for his people, We said, ‘Strike the rock with your staff.’ Then twelve fountains gushed out from it and all the people knew their drinking place. ‘Eat and drink of Allah's provision and do not go about the earth corrupting it.’
Allah (سبحانه) reminds Bani Israeel of the favours that he blessed them with, as if to say “Remember when Musa prayed for rain…”
Here, Allah (سبحانه) explains that the people of Musa (عليه السلام) became thirsty, so he prayed to Allah for them to quench their thirst, so it was revealed to him by Allah (سبحانه) to strike the rock with his staff. When he did this (عليه السلام) twelve streams gushed forth from the rock, according to the number of Jewish tribes. Each tribe had a stream.
It was a favour from Allah for them to eat from the مَنَّ and the سَلْوَى and drink from the water of the streams, so thank Allah for his sustenance, and not to transgress and roam the earth causing corruption.
وَإِذْ قُلْتُمْ يَا مُوسَى لَن نَّصْبِرَ عَلَىَ طَعَامٍ وَاحِدٍ فَادْعُ لَنَا رَبَّكَ يُخْرِجْ لَنَا مِمَّا تُنبِتُ الأَرْضُ مِن بَقْلِهَا وَقِثَّآئِهَا وَفُومِهَا وَعَدَسِهَا وَبَصَلِهَا قَالَ أَتَسْتَبْدِلُونَ الَّذِي هُوَ أَدْنَى بِالَّذِي هُوَ خَيْرٌ اهْبِطُواْ مِصْراً فَإِنَّ لَكُم مَّا سَأَلْتُمْ وَضُرِبَتْ عَلَيْهِمُ الذِّلَّةُ وَالْمَسْكَنَةُ وَبَآؤُوْاْ بِغَضَبٍ مِّنَ اللَّهِ ذَلِكَ بِأَنَّهُمْ كَانُواْ يَكْفُرُونَ بِآيَاتِ اللَّهِ وَيَقْتُلُونَ النَّبِيِّينَ بِغَيْرِ الْحَقِّ ذَلِكَ بِمَا عَصَواْ وَّكَانُواْ يَعْتَدُونَ (61)
(61) And when you said, ‘Musa, we will not put up with just one kind of food so ask your Lord to supply to ussome of what the earth produces – its green vegetables, cucumbers, grains, lentils and onions,’ he said, ‘Do you want to replace what is better with what is inferior? Go back to Egypt, then you will have what you are asking for.’ Abasement and destitution were stamped upon them. They brought down anger from Allah upon themselves. That was because they rejected Allah’s Signs and killed the Prophets without any right to do so. That was because they rebelled and went beyond the limits.
This verse explains the following:
The people of Musa (عليه السلام) disliked to continue with this food that Allah had sent to them الْمَنَّ وَالسَّلْوَى, so they asked Musa (عليه السلام) to ask Allah (سبحانه) to bring out for them some of what the earth produces – of vegetables, cucumbers, lentils, grains and onions, as they used to eat in Egypt, before they left to the wilderness.
فُومِهَا is the wheat & bread, as was explained by Ibn Abbas (ra) according to their language. We said that they disliked that food because لَن نَّصْبِرَ indicates that; as the origin of الصبر is حبس النفس على الضيق من الأمر holding oneself on a restrictive matter.
Therefore, Musa (عليه السلام) reprimanded them for that, saying to them “do you swap what is better for what is worse?”
They had requested a lower food, i.e. of diminished quality, and left what is better الْمَنَّ وَالسَّلْوَى.
In the language, the الباء comes before the discarded thing when replacing with الاستبدال.
أَتَسْتَبْدِلُونَ الَّذِي هُوَ أَدْنَى بِالَّذِي هُوَ خَيْرٌ
So no doubt, that this is a request for the inferior food and leaving what is superior to it.
Musa (عليه السلام) prayed to the lord of the worlds to give them what they asked for, so Allah answered his prayer and gave them what they requested & said to them:
اهْبِطُواْ مِصْراً فَإِنَّ لَكُم مَّا سَأَلْتُمْ
i.e. go to a place, as what you wanted is not in the wilderness and desert, rather in the towns or other places.
مِصْراً here comes indefinite, so it takes a tanween, i.e. a land.
As for مِصْر that is well known (Egypt) the preferred opinion is that it does not take tanween, as in Allah’s statements:
وَقَالَ الَّذِي اشْتَرَاهُ مِنْ مِصْرَ
“The one who bought him from Egypt said”[Yusuf:21]
ادْخُلُوا مِصْرَ إِنْ شَاءَ اللَّهُ آمِنِينَ
“‘Enter Egypt safe and sound, if Allah wills.’” [Yusuf: 99]
أَلَيْسَ لِي مُلْكُ مِصْرَ
“does the kingdom of Egypt not belong to me?” [az-Zukhruf: 51]
أَنْ تَبَوَّآ لِقَوْمِكُمَا بِمِصْرَ بُيُوتًا
“‘Settle your people in houses in Egypt” [Yunus: 87]
Except that in the ayah مِصْراً does not mean that it is not the well known مِصْر Egypt, as Allah (سبحانه) mentioned it indefinitely – i.e. a land – so it could be Egypt or elsewhere.
Mentioning اهْبِطُواْ, although it means descending, but here there is an indication that this descent is from a better place to a worse place.
After that Allah punished them, so they became associated with abasement and destitution.
ضُرِبَتْ i.e. surrounded (or) attached to them and never escaping from it. They are in disgrace and poverty irrespective of the appearance of their condition and this is because they have no real honour. Rather it is as Allah says:
ضُرِبَتْ عَلَيْهِمُ الذِّلَّةُ أَيْنَ مَا ثُقِفُوا إِلَّا بِحَبْلٍ مِنَ اللَّهِ وَحَبْلٍ مِنَ النَّاسِ
“They will be plunged into abasement wherever they are found, unless they have a treaty with Allah and with the people.” [aal-Imran: 112]
i.e. Abased without any honour appearing for them, except if they were with Allah بِحَبْلٍ مِنَ اللَّهِ like the believers with Musa (عليه السلام), or if they were assisted by other peoples وَحَبْلٍ مِنَ النَّاسِ
This is what we see in reality, they are tied to other states who feed them and give them strength.
Similarly, الْمَسْكَنَةُ destitution has been branded on them. الْمَسْكَنَةُ is the verbal noun of مِسْكين indicating in this verse poverty and need.
This is also apparent with their continued need for help and grants and them appearing to be poor and needing money of other is well known.
Then Allah (سبحانه) became angry with them and they live with that anger, as though Allah’s anger for them accompanies them as they journey, coming and going, while they carry that anger of Allah (سبحانه).
All of what they were branded with and live with is because of their denial of Allah’s signs and favours and because of their killing their Prophets, like their killing of Zakaria and Yahya (عليهما السلام), and also due to their disobedience and transgressing Allah’s limits and commands.
ذَلِكَ بِأَنَّهُمْ the باء (baa’) is for causality (السببية), i.e. the cause of these matters.

1 comment:

Riathuddin Nepaul said...

Subhan Allah..Nice Blog