بسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَٰنِ الرَّحِيمِ
In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful.

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا أَوْفُوا بِالْعُقُودِ ۚ أُحِلَّتْ لَكُمْ بَهِيمَةُ الْأَنْعَامِ إِلَّا مَا يُتْلَىٰ عَلَيْكُمْ غَيْرَ مُحِلِّي الصَّيْدِ وَأَنْتُمْ حُرُمٌ ۗ إِنَّ اللَّهَ يَحْكُمُ مَا يُرِيدُ {1}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:1]

Aqd literally means tying together. Uqud (plural) here may mean covenants, contracts agreements, promises, treaties-between man and God or (any of) His prophets, or between human beings.

For peace and harmony in this world fulfilment of uqud has been enjoined by Islam. Islam means complete surrender and submission to the divine will manifested through the sayings and doings of the Holy Prophet, because “He does not speak of his own will; it is naught but revelation revealed” (Najm: 2, 3); and verse 7 of al Hashr enjoins upon the believers: “whatever the Holy Prophet gives you accept it; and whatever he forbids, abstain from it.”

There are covenants which constitute the basis of the religion of Allah-belief in Allah, His prophets, His books, His guidance, His justice; and the covenant taken by the Holy Prophet on the day of Ghadir Khum (see commentary of al Ma-idah: 67). The divine guidance made available to mankind (from His mercy and grace), without which the din of Allah would have not been found in its true and original colour, has been clearly made known by the Holy Prophet in his last pronouncement known as hadith al thaqalayn.

According to the Ahl ul Bayt the covenants referred to in this verse are those taken by the Holy Prophet from his followers on various occasions to follow and obey the holy Imams of the Ahl ul Bayt after the conclusion of his risalat.

Please refer to the commentary of al Baqarah: 196 for “unlawful during hajj is game”. Verse 95 of this surah also says not to kill game when one is on pilgrimage.

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا لَا تُحِلُّوا شَعَائِرَ اللَّهِ وَلَا الشَّهْرَ الْحَرَامَ وَلَا الْهَدْيَ وَلَا الْقَلَائِدَ وَلَا آمِّينَ الْبَيْتَ الْحَرَامَ يَبْتَغُونَ فَضْلًا مِنْ رَبِّهِمْ وَرِضْوَانًا ۚ وَإِذَا حَلَلْتُمْ فَاصْطَادُوا ۚ وَلَا يَجْرِمَنَّكُمْ شَنَآنُ قَوْمٍ أَنْ صَدُّوكُمْ عَنِ الْمَسْجِدِ الْحَرَامِ أَنْ تَعْتَدُوا ۘ وَتَعَاوَنُوا عَلَى الْبِرِّ وَالتَّقْوَىٰ ۖ وَلَا تَعَاوَنُوا عَلَى الْإِثْمِ وَالْعُدْوَانِ ۚ وَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ ۖ إِنَّ اللَّهَ شَدِيدُ الْعِقَابِ {2}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:2]

See commentary of al Baqarah : 158 for sha-irallah.

Hadya and qala-id stands for the animals chosen and reserved for sacrifice, with garlands in their necks to mark them off as sacred.

Let not hatred of any people lead to aggression in the sacred city of Makka. There should be no hindrance at all to the pilgrims while they are proceeding to Ka-bah.

Co-operate in righteousness (tawallah) but do not assist in crime and transgression (tabarra)- these two commandments are the universal maxims of justice.

حُرِّمَتْ عَلَيْكُمُ الْمَيْتَةُ وَالدَّمُ وَلَحْمُ الْخِنْزِيرِ وَمَا أُهِلَّ لِغَيْرِ اللَّهِ بِهِ وَالْمُنْخَنِقَةُ وَالْمَوْقُوذَةُ وَالْمُتَرَدِّيَةُ وَالنَّطِيحَةُ وَمَا أَكَلَ السَّبُعُ إِلَّا مَا ذَكَّيْتُمْ وَمَا ذُبِحَ عَلَى النُّصُبِ وَأَنْ تَسْتَقْسِمُوا بِالْأَزْلَامِ ۚ ذَٰلِكُمْ فِسْقٌ ۗ الْيَوْمَ يَئِسَ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا مِنْ دِينِكُمْ فَلَا تَخْشَوْهُمْ وَاخْشَوْنِ ۚ الْيَوْمَ أَكْمَلْتُ لَكُمْ دِينَكُمْ وَأَتْمَمْتُ عَلَيْكُمْ نِعْمَتِي وَرَضِيتُ لَكُمُ الْإِسْلَامَ دِينًا ۚ فَمَنِ اضْطُرَّ فِي مَخْمَصَةٍ غَيْرَ مُتَجَانِفٍ لِإِثْمٍ ۙ فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ غَفُورٌ رَحِيمٌ {3}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:3]

Please refer to the commentary of al Baqarah: 173 for carrion (corpse of a dead animal), blood flesh of swine, and that over which is invoked the name a ghayrallah (other than Allah). Also forbidden are the strangled, the beaten down, the fallen down, the gored, that which has been devoured by beasts of prey, and that which has been slaughtered at altars; and also dividing the meat by casting lots with arrows is forbidden.

Illa ma dhakkaytun-tadhkiyah means to cleanse (allowing the heat in the body to pass away through the Islamic way of slaughter).

From alyawm to Islama dina was revealed when the Holy Prophet announced at Ghadir Khum: “Of whomsoever I am the mawla (master) Ali is his mawla (master)”. Please study the event of Ghadir Khum in the commentary of verse 67 of this surah.

Ahmad bin Hanbal, the founder of Hanbali sect, writes in his Musnad that a Jew had told the second caliph: “If there were a similar declaration in the Pentateuch, the Jews would have celebrated the day as a great festival.”

This verse is also a clear testimony to the perfection of the religion of Islam. Please refer to the commentary of al Fatihah: 7.

Allah has completed and perfected Islam only when, under His command (Ma-idah: 67), the Holy Prophet had announced the imamat of Ali after the termination of risalat-he being the last messenger of Allah. Fakhruddin Razi has said that the Holy Prophet died 81 or 82 days after the revelation of this verse. All authorities agree that no law-giving verse was revealed after this verse. So without believing in Ali as the immediate successor of the Holy Prophet, according to this verse, the faith is neither complete nor perfect. The institution of imamat is necessary to keep intact the final word of Allah (the Quran) and to guide mankind unto the right path till the day of resurrection.

As verse 67 of this surah is inevitably connected with this verse, please study its commentary very carefully. To avoid repetition, all the historical, logical and rational arguments with authentic references pertaining to the imamah of Ali and his descendants mentioned in verse 67 of this surah have not been related here. This verse should be read as an immediate corollary of verse 67 of this surah.

This fact stands confirmed by a large number of non-Shia scholars, therefore, if any tradition contrary to this fact is narrated by Bukhari and Muslim, based upon diplomacy and political pressures, should be reviewed in the light of the bias and hostility they, and men like them, display whenever they deal with the merits of the Ahl ul Bayt. Please refer to Peshawar Nights, a well-known book published by Peermahomed Ebrahim Trust and Zahra Publications.

In the first verse of this surah it is said: “Verily Allah commands whatsoever He intends”. So there is no sense in questioning the will of Allah if He intermingles various issues in any chapter, or in one verse, or two closely connected verses, or passages are placed away from each other. This arrangement was made by the Holy Prophet in his own lifetime. Please refer to “Genuineness of the Quran” (by Aqa Mahdi Puya) in this book.

Aqa Mahdi Puya says:

After islama dina, fa, in faman, connects its following clause to the prohibitory clause preceding alyawma to islama dina, making the two clauses in alyawma to islama dina parenthetical. In its esoteric significance fa may be connected with the immediately preceding clauses to mean that Islam in its true form is that which was made known at Ghadir Khum in pursuance of verse 67 of this surah.

يَسْأَلُونَكَ مَاذَا أُحِلَّ لَهُمْ ۖ قُلْ أُحِلَّ لَكُمُ الطَّيِّبَاتُ ۙ وَمَا عَلَّمْتُمْ مِنَ الْجَوَارِحِ مُكَلِّبِينَ تُعَلِّمُونَهُنَّ مِمَّا عَلَّمَكُمُ اللَّهُ ۖ فَكُلُوا مِمَّا أَمْسَكْنَ عَلَيْكُمْ وَاذْكُرُوا اسْمَ اللَّهِ عَلَيْهِ ۖ وَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ ۚ إِنَّ اللَّهَ سَرِيعُ الْحِسَابِ {4}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:4]

Aqa Mahdi Puya says:

Jawrihi means any hunting animal, but mimma amsakna restricts the animal to be that who can hold the prey for its master. The adverb makallibin refers to dogs only.

According to the Ahl ul Bayt Allah’s name should be mentioned at the time of setting the dog to catch the prey. For details refer to fiqh.

الْيَوْمَ أُحِلَّ لَكُمُ الطَّيِّبَاتُ ۖ وَطَعَامُ الَّذِينَ أُوتُوا الْكِتَابَ حِلٌّ لَكُمْ وَطَعَامُكُمْ حِلٌّ لَهُمْ ۖ وَالْمُحْصَنَاتُ مِنَ الْمُؤْمِنَاتِ وَالْمُحْصَنَاتُ مِنَ الَّذِينَ أُوتُوا الْكِتَابَ مِنْ قَبْلِكُمْ إِذَا آتَيْتُمُوهُنَّ أُجُورَهُنَّ مُحْصِنِينَ غَيْرَ مُسَافِحِينَ وَلَا مُتَّخِذِي أَخْدَانٍ ۗ وَمَنْ يَكْفُرْ بِالْإِيمَانِ فَقَدْ حَبِطَ عَمَلُهُ وَهُوَ فِي الْآخِرَةِ مِنَ الْخَاسِرِينَ {5}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:5]

According to Imam Jafar bin Muhammad al Sadiq the word ta-am implies food made of grains not containing flesh of permitted animals.

The Jews and the Christians do not follow the prescribed method of slaughtering the animals, nor do they seek Allah’s pleasure before killing the animal, therefore, to eat flesh of any animal offered by them is not lawful for the Muslims.

“Whosoever denies the faith, his deeds will be rendered useless” clearly lays down the principle that good deeds cannot be of any use unless one believes in Allah, His messengers and guides appointed by Him, and the day of judgement .

Aqa Mahdi Puya says:

This verse gives permission to the Muslims to eat the food (made of grains) offered by the people of the book; and also the chaste women of the people of the book are lawful for the Muslims. Wal muhsanat should be understood with reference to ujurakunna, because both these words have been used in verse 24 of an Nisa while allowing mutatun nisa (temporary marriage). Therefore, instead of permanent wedlock, this permission relates to mutatun nisa.

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا إِذَا قُمْتُمْ إِلَى الصَّلَاةِ فَاغْسِلُوا وُجُوهَكُمْ وَأَيْدِيَكُمْ إِلَى الْمَرَافِقِ وَامْسَحُوا بِرُءُوسِكُمْ وَأَرْجُلَكُمْ إِلَى الْكَعْبَيْنِ ۚ وَإِنْ كُنْتُمْ جُنُبًا فَاطَّهَّرُوا ۚ وَإِنْ كُنْتُمْ مَرْضَىٰ أَوْ عَلَىٰ سَفَرٍ أَوْ جَاءَ أَحَدٌ مِنْكُمْ مِنَ الْغَائِطِ أَوْ لَامَسْتُمُ النِّسَاءَ فَلَمْ تَجِدُوا مَاءً فَتَيَمَّمُوا صَعِيدًا طَيِّبًا فَامْسَحُوا بِوُجُوهِكُمْ وَأَيْدِيكُمْ مِنْهُ ۚ مَا يُرِيدُ اللَّهُ لِيَجْعَلَ عَلَيْكُمْ مِنْ حَرَجٍ وَلَٰكِنْ يُرِيدُ لِيُطَهِّرَكُمْ وَلِيُتِمَّ نِعْمَتَهُ عَلَيْكُمْ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَشْكُرُونَ {6}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:6]

Wudu and tayammum, the two methods of cleansing for praying salat, have been prescribed in this verse.

The emission of seed, whether in waking or in sleep, makes bathing (ghusl) obligatory.

Wudu (ablution) is done with water. If water is not available, or there is a genuine danger to health if used, then tayammum (use of dust to cleanse) has been prescribed. For details refer to fiqh.It is written in Sahih Bukhari and other books of history that the second caliph disliked this divine ordinance so much that he was prepared not to pray at all rather than observe these commands.

Aqa Mahdi Puya says:

Those who wipe the whole head with a wet hand and wash the feet instead of wiping them with the wet hands do not take into consideration that which the ba in biru-usikum implies.

In tayammum, again due to the possessive particle ba in biwujuhikum, only a portion of the face and the hands have to be wiped-the parts which have to be washed inwudu are wiped in tayammum, and the parts which are wiped in wudu are omitted in tayammum.

The intention of Allah is to purify and complete His favour. This verse is legislative. It implies that whoever submits to Allah’s command will get His blessings. The will of Allah as in Ahzab: 33 is creative which means “Be; and it becomes”.

وَاذْكُرُوا نِعْمَةَ اللَّهِ عَلَيْكُمْ وَمِيثَاقَهُ الَّذِي وَاثَقَكُمْ بِهِ إِذْ قُلْتُمْ سَمِعْنَا وَأَطَعْنَا ۖ وَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ ۚ إِنَّ اللَّهَ عَلِيمٌ بِذَاتِ الصُّدُورِ {7}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:7]

Aqa Mahdi Puya says:

The covenant, mentioned in this verse, wherewith Allah has bound the faithful, and by virtue of which His favour has been bestowed on them, is that which has been referred to in verse 3 of this surah-the last covenant taken from the faithfuls at Ghadir Khum (please refer to the commentary of verse 3 of this surah pertaining to “today I have perfected for you your religion and have completed My favour upon you “).

“When you said” refers to the reply they gave to the Holy Prophet when he told them “of whomsoever I am the master (mawla) Ali is his master (mawla).” Please refer to the commentary of verse 67 of this surah for authentic references from the books written by well-known Muslim (non-Shia) scholars; and to know the names of the historians, traditionists and commentators who have reported the proceedings of the historic event at Ghadir Khum.

“And fear Allah; verily Allah knows that which is (hidden) in your breasts (hearts)” refers to the spirit of revolt, which at last manifested itself in Saqifa Bani Sa-idah after the departure of the Holy Prophet .

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا كُونُوا قَوَّامِينَ لِلَّهِ شُهَدَاءَ بِالْقِسْطِ ۖ وَلَا يَجْرِمَنَّكُمْ شَنَآنُ قَوْمٍ عَلَىٰ أَلَّا تَعْدِلُوا ۚ اعْدِلُوا هُوَ أَقْرَبُ لِلتَّقْوَىٰ ۖ وَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ ۚ إِنَّ اللَّهَ خَبِيرٌ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ {8}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:8]

Refer to the commentary of an Nisa: 135.

وَعَدَ اللَّهُ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ ۙ لَهُمْ مَغْفِرَةٌ وَأَجْرٌ عَظِيمٌ {9}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:9]

وَالَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا وَكَذَّبُوا بِآيَاتِنَا أُولَٰئِكَ أَصْحَابُ الْجَحِيمِ {10}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:10]

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا اذْكُرُوا نِعْمَتَ اللَّهِ عَلَيْكُمْ إِذْ هَمَّ قَوْمٌ أَنْ يَبْسُطُوا إِلَيْكُمْ أَيْدِيَهُمْ فَكَفَّ أَيْدِيَهُمْ عَنْكُمْ ۖ وَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ ۚ وَعَلَى اللَّهِ فَلْيَتَوَكَّلِ الْمُؤْمِنُونَ {11}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:11]

Many attempts were made by the enemies of Allah and the Holy Prophet to kill him so as to prevent the march of Islam which was uprooting the pagan society, but Allah saved him and His religion on all occasions through His wali, Ali ibn abi Talib, who is known as yadullah (the hand of Allah).

وَلَقَدْ أَخَذَ اللَّهُ مِيثَاقَ بَنِي إِسْرَائِيلَ وَبَعَثْنَا مِنْهُمُ اثْنَيْ عَشَرَ نَقِيبًا ۖ وَقَالَ اللَّهُ إِنِّي مَعَكُمْ ۖ لَئِنْ أَقَمْتُمُ الصَّلَاةَ وَآتَيْتُمُ الزَّكَاةَ وَآمَنْتُمْ بِرُسُلِي وَعَزَّرْتُمُوهُمْ وَأَقْرَضْتُمُ اللَّهَ قَرْضًا حَسَنًا لَأُكَفِّرَنَّ عَنْكُمْ سَيِّئَاتِكُمْ وَلَأُدْخِلَنَّكُمْ جَنَّاتٍ تَجْرِي مِنْ تَحْتِهَا الْأَنْهَارُ ۚ فَمَنْ كَفَرَ بَعْدَ ذَٰلِكَ مِنْكُمْ فَقَدْ ضَلَّ سَوَاءَ السَّبِيلِ {12}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:12]

For the covenant taken from the Jews refer to Deut 26: 16 and 17 mentioned in the commentary of al Baqarah: 40; and for the goodly loan, refer to the commentary of al Baqarah : 245; and for the twelve leaders, refer to Numbers 1: 1 to 15; and 13: 3 to 15. If righteousness (as defined in this verse and in al Baqarah: 177) is adopted and put in practice Allah absolves man of his sins, but whosoever deviates, after coming into the fold of the religion of Allah, shall go astray into the camp of Shaytan-a warning to those who had broken the covenant taken by the Holy Prophet at Ghadir Khum, and their followers till the day of resurrection.

فَبِمَا نَقْضِهِمْ مِيثَاقَهُمْ لَعَنَّاهُمْ وَجَعَلْنَا قُلُوبَهُمْ قَاسِيَةً ۖ يُحَرِّفُونَ الْكَلِمَ عَنْ مَوَاضِعِهِ ۙ وَنَسُوا حَظًّا مِمَّا ذُكِّرُوا بِهِ ۚ وَلَا تَزَالُ تَطَّلِعُ عَلَىٰ خَائِنَةٍ مِنْهُمْ إِلَّا قَلِيلًا مِنْهُمْ ۖ فَاعْفُ عَنْهُمْ وَاصْفَحْ ۚ إِنَّ اللَّهَ يُحِبُّ الْمُحْسِنِينَ {13}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:13]

Refer to al Baqarah: 40 for the covenant taken from Bani Israil to accept the Holy Prophet as the promised prophet, which they did not fulfil; and to deny the genuineness of his divine mission they corrupted the books sent to their prophets.

Allah curses the people who break their pledge. So the Muslims should take precaution and avoid to act like the Jews. It is incumbent upon the Muslims to remain attached with the covenant the Holy Prophet bound them with at Ghadir Khum. They must also safeguard themselves from misinterpreting the Quran in order to keep away the curse of Allah which will certainly be upon them if they, like the Jews, distort the true meanings of the book of Allah to serve their worldly interests.

وَمِنَ الَّذِينَ قَالُوا إِنَّا نَصَارَىٰ أَخَذْنَا مِيثَاقَهُمْ فَنَسُوا حَظًّا مِمَّا ذُكِّرُوا بِهِ فَأَغْرَيْنَا بَيْنَهُمُ الْعَدَاوَةَ وَالْبَغْضَاءَ إِلَىٰ يَوْمِ الْقِيَامَةِ ۚ وَسَوْفَ يُنَبِّئُهُمُ اللَّهُ بِمَا كَانُوا يَصْنَعُونَ {14}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:14]

Please refer to John 14: 16, 17; 15: 26; and 16: 7 to 13 mentioned in the commentary of al Baqarah: 253, according to which the comforter, the advocate and the spirit of truth (the Holy Prophet) will be with mankind for ever- through his descendants (the twelve holy Imams), because the Holy Prophet said:

The first of us is Muhammad, the middle of us is Muhammad the last of us is Muhammad, everyone of us is Muhammad.

Please refer to pages 1 to 7, and the commentary of al Fatihah: 6, 7; al Baqarah: 2 to 5, 27, 30 to 39, 51, 83, 93, 124 to 126, 207, 247 to 251; Ali Imran: 7,13,61.

The Jews had corrupted their written book revealed to Musa, and the Christians had forgotten the verbal announcements of Isa.

يَا أَهْلَ الْكِتَابِ قَدْ جَاءَكُمْ رَسُولُنَا يُبَيِّنُ لَكُمْ كَثِيرًا مِمَّا كُنْتُمْ تُخْفُونَ مِنَ الْكِتَابِ وَيَعْفُو عَنْ كَثِيرٍ ۚ قَدْ جَاءَكُمْ مِنَ اللَّهِ نُورٌ وَكِتَابٌ مُبِينٌ {15}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:15]

“Hide” implies both suppression or concealment and distortion or misinterpretation, which the Jews and the Christians employed to deny the prophethood of the Holy Prophet; and “you” refers to them and their forefathers.

In their books there were many clear prophecies of the advent of the Holy Prophet, but they changed some and disguised others. There were also other truths, concealed by them, which have been again revealed in the Quran, omitting those which pertained to the particular age of their earlier prophets, and were not needed for mankind any more.

The “light” stands for that light about which the Holy Prophet had said:

“I and Ali are of one and the same light which Allah created as the first creation.”

Kitabun mubin refers to the samit (silent) as well the natiq (speaking) Quran-Muhammad and ali Muhammad. See commentary of al Baqarah:2. Through the Holy Prophet and his Ahl ul Bayt and the Quran Allah guides those who follow His pleasure to the path of peace, out of darkness into light, by His will (bi-idhnihi).

“Darkness” implies ghulu and taqsir-refer to the commentary al Fatihah: 7.

يَهْدِي بِهِ اللَّهُ مَنِ اتَّبَعَ رِضْوَانَهُ سُبُلَ السَّلَامِ وَيُخْرِجُهُمْ مِنَ الظُّلُمَاتِ إِلَى النُّورِ بِإِذْنِهِ وَيَهْدِيهِمْ إِلَىٰ صِرَاطٍ مُسْتَقِيمٍ {16}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:16] (see commentary for verse 15)

لَقَدْ كَفَرَ الَّذِينَ قَالُوا إِنَّ اللَّهَ هُوَ الْمَسِيحُ ابْنُ مَرْيَمَ ۚ قُلْ فَمَنْ يَمْلِكُ مِنَ اللَّهِ شَيْئًا إِنْ أَرَادَ أَنْ يُهْلِكَ الْمَسِيحَ ابْنَ مَرْيَمَ وَأُمَّهُ وَمَنْ فِي الْأَرْضِ جَمِيعًا ۗ وَلِلَّهِ مُلْكُ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضِ وَمَا بَيْنَهُمَا ۚ يَخْلُقُ مَا يَشَاءُ ۚ وَاللَّهُ عَلَىٰ كُلِّ شَيْءٍ قَدِيرٌ{17}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:17]

Please refer to the commentary of al Baqarah: 253, 255; Ali Imran: 2, 3, 7, 42 to 55, 59 to 63; and al Nisa : 171, to know about the hayyal qayyam Allah and the false beliefs of the Christians regarding Isa in the form of trinity. Isa was a man, a created being, like Adam (Ali Imran: 59) or any other prophet. He was neither the soul-incarnate of God, nor the son of God, nor the redeemer of the sins of mankind. In fact trinitarianism is a flagrant variety of polytheism. The relationship between God and His created beings is, as per verses 91 to 93 of Maryam, of the master and His slaves, with no exception; the highest and the lowest among them are equal in submission to His lordship, because they all come before the beneficent Lord in all obedience, and the most obedient is nearest to Him.

وَقَالَتِ الْيَهُودُ وَالنَّصَارَىٰ نَحْنُ أَبْنَاءُ اللَّهِ وَأَحِبَّاؤُهُ ۚ قُلْ فَلِمَ يُعَذِّبُكُمْ بِذُنُوبِكُمْ ۖ بَلْ أَنْتُمْ بَشَرٌ مِمَّنْ خَلَقَ ۚ يَغْفِرُ لِمَنْ يَشَاءُ وَيُعَذِّبُ مَنْ يَشَاءُ ۚ وَلِلَّهِ مُلْكُ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضِ وَمَا بَيْنَهُمَا ۖ وَإِلَيْهِ الْمَصِيرُ {18}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:18]

The theory of atonement of sins by Isa is a fanciful conjecture.

It has no effect. It cannot and does not change the law of retribution. His mercy is available to His created beings. He forgives whomsoever He wills and punishes whomsoever He wills. He is just. The kingdom (sovereignty) of the whole universe belongs to Him, and everything will go back to Him.

Verses 7 and 8 of al Zilzal render the doctrine of atonement null and void.

Whomsoever had done (even) an atom’s weight of good will behold it;and whosoever has done (even) an atom’s weight of evil will behold it. Islam is a religion of justice, rightness and exactitude.

يَا أَهْلَ الْكِتَابِ قَدْ جَاءَكُمْ رَسُولُنَا يُبَيِّنُ لَكُمْ عَلَىٰ فَتْرَةٍ مِنَ الرُّسُلِ أَنْ تَقُولُوا مَا جَاءَنَا مِنْ بَشِيرٍ وَلَا نَذِيرٍ ۖ فَقَدْ جَاءَكُمْ بَشِيرٌ وَنَذِيرٌ ۗ وَاللَّهُ عَلَىٰ كُلِّ شَيْءٍ قَدِيرٌ {19}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:19]

Aqa Mahdi Puya says:

Fatratin means an interval in the process of preaching, not discontinuation or breakdown of the institution of vicegerency of Allah on the earth. Refer to the commentary of al Baqarah: 30.

The promise of sending the comforter or the spirit of God was fulfilled in the advent of the Holy Prophet but the Jews and the Christians disbelieved in him.

وَإِذْ قَالَ مُوسَىٰ لِقَوْمِهِ يَا قَوْمِ اذْكُرُوا نِعْمَةَ اللَّهِ عَلَيْكُمْ إِذْ جَعَلَ فِيكُمْ أَنْبِيَاءَ وَجَعَلَكُمْ مُلُوكًا وَآتَاكُمْ مَا لَمْ يُؤْتِ أَحَدًا مِنَ الْعَالَمِينَ {20}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:20]

Please refer to the commentary of al Baqarah: 40 to 147 to know the favours and bounties Allah had bestowed on Bani Israil, and how they always rebelled against Allah and His messengers, earning (in consequence) His displeasure.

Aqa Mahdi Puya says:

The order to enter a holy land, or turn from one direction to another (change of qibla), or to remain stationed at a certain place (battle of Uhad), was given to test the degree of submission to the divine commands. The Quran refers to such instances to warn the Muslims to avoid disobedience displayed by the Jews in similar circumstances .

The following extract is given from Milman’s History of the Jews:-

“At length the nation arrived on the southern frontier of the promised land (Vr. 21 ) . Twelve spies, one from each tribe, are sent out to make observations on the fruitfulness of the land, the character of the inhabitants and the strength of their fortifications. Among these the most distinguished are Caleb of the tribe of Judah and Joshua of Ephraim-In one respect their report is most satisfactory: Canaan had undergone vast improvements, since the time when Abraham and Isaac had pastured their flocks in the open and unoccupied plains. But on the other hand, the intelligence, exaggerated by the fears of the rest of the twelve spies, overwhelms the people with terror. Their treasures were guarded by fierce and warlike tribes, not likely to abandon their native plains without an obstinate bloody conquest. Their cities were strongly fortified, and above all the first enemies they would have to encounter would be men of colossal stature, the descendants of the gigantic people, celebrated in their early national traditions, people before whom they would be grasshoppers (Verse 22)-The confidence in the divine protection gave way at once before their sense of physical inferiority, and the total deficiency of moral courage, ‘Back’ to Egypt’ is the general cry. The brave Joshua and Caleb in vain reprove the general pusillanimity (Verse 23); their own lives are in danger; and in bitter disappointment the great law-giver perceives that a people- inured to slavery from their birth, are not the z material from which he can construct a bold conquering and independent nation. (Verse 25)

The decision instantly formed-they are neither to return to Egypt nor assail an easier conquest; but . they are condemned to wander for a definite period of forty years, in the barren and dismal regions through which they had marched (Verse 26).”

Some quotations from the Old Testament are given below:

Thus their report to the Israelites about the land which they had explored was discouraging: “The country we explored”, they said “will swallow up any who go to live in it. All the people we saw there are men of gigantic size.” (Numbers 13: 32)

And two of those who had explored the land, Joshua son of Nun and Caleb son of Jephunneh, rent their clothes and addressed the whole community: “The country we penetrated and explored”, they said, “is very good land in deed. If the Lord is pleased with us, He will bring us into this land which flows with milk and honey, and give it to us. But you must not rebel against the Lord. You need not fear the people of the land; for there we shall find food. They have lost the protection that they had; the Lord is with us. (Numbers 14: 6 to 9)

Aqa Mahdi Puya says:

Only two God-fearing men (Joshua and Caleb), from among the several followers of Musa, believed in Allah and His Prophet and relied upon them. Similarly a large majority of the Muslims, present at Ghadir Khum also turned disloyal to the covenant they bound themselves with on that day and till the day of zahur (appearance of the living Imam and Isa) their followers shall continue to do as the Jews and their own leaders did.

In Minhaj us Sadiqin it is stated that rabbuka before faqatila (fight you two) implies Harun because he was the elder brother of Musa, which has been made clear in verse 25 when Musa mentions the name of Harun.

Aqa Mahdi Puya says:

The impertinent disobedience of the Muslims to the order of the Holy Prophet to march under the command of Usamah, or of some of the companions to his order to bring paper and pen (hadith al qirtas), bears similarity to the conduct of the followers of Musa. Not only the paper and pen demanded by the Holy Prophet was not provided to him but also it was observed that the old man (Holy Prophet) was in a delirium, uttering nonsense. Like Musa the Holy Prophet said:

Go away. Leave me alone.

The forty years wandering of the Bani Israil lasted, according to Sir Charles Marston’s computation, from 1440 B.C. to 1400 B.C.

Refer to Numbers 14: 29 to 34.

Aqa Mahdi Puya says:

The wandering of the children of Israil was for forty years, but the wandering of those who have broken the covenant made at Ghadir Khum shall last till the reappearance of the last Imam of the house of the Holy Prophet.

“Do not grieve for (these) rebellious people.” shows that Musa, inspite of all the injuries and slanders heaped upon him, pitied his rebellious people, and was moved at their miseries.

يَا قَوْمِ ادْخُلُوا الْأَرْضَ الْمُقَدَّسَةَ الَّتِي كَتَبَ اللَّهُ لَكُمْ وَلَا تَرْتَدُّوا عَلَىٰ أَدْبَارِكُمْ فَتَنْقَلِبُوا خَاسِرِينَ {21}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:21] (see commentary for verse 20)

قَالُوا يَا مُوسَىٰ إِنَّ فِيهَا قَوْمًا جَبَّارِينَ وَإِنَّا لَنْ نَدْخُلَهَا حَتَّىٰ يَخْرُجُوا مِنْهَا فَإِنْ يَخْرُجُوا مِنْهَا فَإِنَّا دَاخِلُونَ {22}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:22] (see commentary for verse 20)

قَالَ رَجُلَانِ مِنَ الَّذِينَ يَخَافُونَ أَنْعَمَ اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِمَا ادْخُلُوا عَلَيْهِمُ الْبَابَ فَإِذَا دَخَلْتُمُوهُ فَإِنَّكُمْ غَالِبُونَ ۚ وَعَلَى اللَّهِ فَتَوَكَّلُوا إِنْ كُنْتُمْ مُؤْمِنِينَ {23}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:23] (see commentary for verse 20)

قَالُوا يَا مُوسَىٰ إِنَّا لَنْ نَدْخُلَهَا أَبَدًا مَا دَامُوا فِيهَا ۖ فَاذْهَبْ أَنْتَ وَرَبُّكَ فَقَاتِلَا إِنَّا هَاهُنَا قَاعِدُونَ {24}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:24] (see commentary for verse 20)

قَالَ رَبِّ إِنِّي لَا أَمْلِكُ إِلَّا نَفْسِي وَأَخِي ۖ فَافْرُقْ بَيْنَنَا وَبَيْنَ الْقَوْمِ الْفَاسِقِينَ {25}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:25] (see commentary for verse 20)

قَالَ فَإِنَّهَا مُحَرَّمَةٌ عَلَيْهِمْ ۛ أَرْبَعِينَ سَنَةً ۛ يَتِيهُونَ فِي الْأَرْضِ ۚ فَلَا تَأْسَ عَلَى الْقَوْمِ الْفَاسِقِينَ {26}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:26] (see commentary for verse 20)

وَاتْلُ عَلَيْهِمْ نَبَأَ ابْنَيْ آدَمَ بِالْحَقِّ إِذْ قَرَّبَا قُرْبَانًا فَتُقُبِّلَ مِنْ أَحَدِهِمَا وَلَمْ يُتَقَبَّلْ مِنَ الْآخَرِ قَالَ لَأَقْتُلَنَّكَ ۖ قَالَ إِنَّمَا يَتَقَبَّلُ اللَّهُ مِنَ الْمُتَّقِينَ {27}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:27]

Habil (Abel) and Qabil (Cain) were the two sons of Adam. Adam had nominated the younger son Habil as his successor. The elder son, Qabil, disputed his father’s judgement. Thereupon Adam asked each of them to offer a sacrifice to Allah separately so that Allah might accept the sacrifice of one whom He found deserving to succeed him. Habil was a shepherd and Qabil a tiller of the soil. Habil brought the best of his flock as a gift to the Lord; and Qabil brought some dried up ears of corn. Allah received Habil’s gift with favour; but He did not receive Qabil’s gift. Qabil was very angry and his face fell. He attacked his brother Habil and murdered him. As this was the first murder, in fact, first human death, Qabil did not know what to do with the corpse and stood puzzled. A raven was sent by Allah to show him how to bury a dead body. Adam was greatly disturbed. Allah had granted him another son, Shith, in place of Habil. Shith, a prophet of Allah, succeeded Adam. Qabil’s descendants were drowned when the waters of the great flood came upon the earth in the days of Nuh.

Allah only accepts sacrifice from those who are pious and safeguard themselves against evil with full awareness of Allah’s laws. Three loaves of bread given to the needy by such men have earned highest praise from Allah (see commentary of al Dahr: 5 to 22); while verse 264 of al Baqarah condemns those who spend large quantities with ungodly motives.

The murderer bears the sins of the person he has slain. If the murdered person is a prophet, as Habil was, the murderer bears the sins of those who might have been guided to the right path, by the slain prophet or the guide appointed by Allah, till the day of resurrection. Every prophet or guide, divinely chosen, represents his people, and the sins of the people are laid at his door, so that Allah may pardon them on account of His chosen representative, as has been indicated in verse 2 of al Fat-h.

In verse 31 Qabil is sorry for his ignorance (not repentant) and condemns himself for not knowing even that which a raven knew.

لَئِنْ بَسَطْتَ إِلَيَّ يَدَكَ لِتَقْتُلَنِي مَا أَنَا بِبَاسِطٍ يَدِيَ إِلَيْكَ لِأَقْتُلَكَ ۖ إِنِّي أَخَافُ اللَّهَ رَبَّ الْعَالَمِينَ {28}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:28] (see commentary for verse 27)

إِنِّي أُرِيدُ أَنْ تَبُوءَ بِإِثْمِي وَإِثْمِكَ فَتَكُونَ مِنْ أَصْحَابِ النَّارِ ۚ وَذَٰلِكَ جَزَاءُ الظَّالِمِينَ {29}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:29] (see commentary for verse 27)

فَطَوَّعَتْ لَهُ نَفْسُهُ قَتْلَ أَخِيهِ فَقَتَلَهُ فَأَصْبَحَ مِنَ الْخَاسِرِينَ {30}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:30] (see commentary for verse 27)

فَبَعَثَ اللَّهُ غُرَابًا يَبْحَثُ فِي الْأَرْضِ لِيُرِيَهُ كَيْفَ يُوَارِي سَوْءَةَ أَخِيهِ ۚ قَالَ يَا وَيْلَتَا أَعَجَزْتُ أَنْ أَكُونَ مِثْلَ هَٰذَا الْغُرَابِ فَأُوَارِيَ سَوْءَةَ أَخِي ۖ فَأَصْبَحَ مِنَ النَّادِمِينَ {31}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:31] (see commentary for verse 27)

مِنْ أَجْلِ ذَٰلِكَ كَتَبْنَا عَلَىٰ بَنِي إِسْرَائِيلَ أَنَّهُ مَنْ قَتَلَ نَفْسًا بِغَيْرِ نَفْسٍ أَوْ فَسَادٍ فِي الْأَرْضِ فَكَأَنَّمَا قَتَلَ النَّاسَ جَمِيعًا وَمَنْ أَحْيَاهَا فَكَأَنَّمَا أَحْيَا النَّاسَ جَمِيعًا ۚ وَلَقَدْ جَاءَتْهُمْ رُسُلُنَا بِالْبَيِّنَاتِ ثُمَّ إِنَّ كَثِيرًا مِنْهُمْ بَعْدَ ذَٰلِكَ فِي الْأَرْضِ لَمُسْرِفُونَ{32}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:32]

Murder of an individual has been compared to “killing all humanity”, in order to lay emphasis on the establishment of peace and harmony on the earth.

Keeping this verse and the preceding verse in view the conduct of the so-called followers of the Holy Prophet has to be condemned and cursed, who, immediately after his departure from this world, raided the house of Ali and Fatimah’s and set it on fire; and afterwards killed Imam Hasan, and murdered Imam Husayn together with other members of the holy house and their friends and followers, and put to death all the holy Imams in the progeny of the Holy Prophet till the last Imam Muhammad al Mahdi had to go from among them by the command of Allah. Besides this the followers of the holy Imams had been persecuted and murdered by the khalifatul muslimin and their agents in every age, and still the persecution and killing continue.

In the time of the first caliph, Khalid bin Walid killed Malik ibn Nuwayra, raped his wife, and murdered all the men, women and children of his tribe in one single night and burned their bodies to cook food for his army. To ridicule the divine declaration in these verses all these atrocities were described as the result of khata al ijtihadi (error of judgement) so as to set the pattern which despot after despot followed to annihilate the descendants of the Holy Prophet and their followers.

إِنَّمَا جَزَاءُ الَّذِينَ يُحَارِبُونَ اللَّهَ وَرَسُولَهُ وَيَسْعَوْنَ فِي الْأَرْضِ فَسَادًا أَنْ يُقَتَّلُوا أَوْ يُصَلَّبُوا أَوْ تُقَطَّعَ أَيْدِيهِمْ وَأَرْجُلُهُمْ مِنْ خِلَافٍ أَوْ يُنْفَوْا مِنَ الْأَرْضِ ۚ ذَٰلِكَ لَهُمْ خِزْيٌ فِي الدُّنْيَا ۖ وَلَهُمْ فِي الْآخِرَةِ عَذَابٌ عَظِيمٌ {33}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:33]

Those who wage war against Allah and His prophet, kill the believers and plunder their property shall be disgraced in this world, and for them is a dreadful doom in the hereafter.

Refer to the commentary of al Baqarah: 48, 97 and 98 and the preceding verse to know how the so-called followers of the Holy Prophet waged war against the holy house of the Holy Prophet and committed heinous crimes while carrying out their ugly plan to eliminate them for ever. No doubt they have been disgraced in this world (all the sincere believers curse and condemn them), and they shall be severely punished on the day of judgement .

Aqa Mahdi Puya says:

Waging war against Allah and His prophet means hostility against His chosen representatives; or deviation from His laws by overstepping the boundaries laid down by Him; or letting loose a reign of terror to persecute and frighten innocent people in order to deprive them of their rights; or attempts to undermine the cause of Islam and the overall interests of the Muslims; or activities to enslave, exploit and destroy human beings.

Allah forgives only those who turn repentant to Him before they are proved guilty of the crime.

إِلَّا الَّذِينَ تَابُوا مِنْ قَبْلِ أَنْ تَقْدِرُوا عَلَيْهِمْ ۖ فَاعْلَمُوا أَنَّ اللَّهَ غَفُورٌ رَحِيمٌ {34}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:34] (see commentary for verse 33)

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا اتَّقُوا اللَّهَ وَابْتَغُوا إِلَيْهِ الْوَسِيلَةَ وَجَاهِدُوا فِي سَبِيلِهِ لَعَلَّكُمْ تُفْلِحُونَ {35}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:35]

Wasilah is a means of access to a thing or a being.

If Allah had willed He could have guided mankind directly through inspiration, but in His infinite wisdom, He had not deemed it desirable. He selected and appointed His representatives to convey His message and laws to people and administer their affairs in every age. Please refer to pages 1 to 7, and the commentary of al Baqarah: 2 to 5, 30 to 38, 48, and 124 to know that the Holy Prophet and his Ahl ul Bayt are the only means of approach to Allah.

Thus wasilah or means of access to Allah is to faithfully follow the Holy Prophet and the holy Imams of his holy house, who have been thoroughly purified by Allah (Ahzab: 33).

The Holy Prophet said:

“I and Ali are from one divine light.”

“I will soon be called back, so I will have to go away from you, but I leave behind, amid you, the thaqalayn (two weighty indispensable influential authorities), the book of Allah and my Ahl ul Bayt. Should you be attached to these two, never, never shall you go astray, after me, for verily these two will never be separated from each other; and, joined together, they shall meet me at the spring of Kawthar.”

“My Ahl ul Bayt amongst you are like the ark of Nuh. He who sails on it will be safe; but he who holds back shall be drowned and lost.”.

إِنَّ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا لَوْ أَنَّ لَهُمْ مَا فِي الْأَرْضِ جَمِيعًا وَمِثْلَهُ مَعَهُ لِيَفْتَدُوا بِهِ مِنْ عَذَابِ يَوْمِ الْقِيَامَةِ مَا تُقُبِّلَ مِنْهُمْ ۖ وَلَهُمْ عَذَابٌ أَلِيمٌ {36}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:36]

All the riches of the world, and two times more, shall be of no use if the disbelievers offer it as ransom on the day of judgement to save themselves from the painful punishment of the fire wherein they shall abide for ever.

يُرِيدُونَ أَنْ يَخْرُجُوا مِنَ النَّارِ وَمَا هُمْ بِخَارِجِينَ مِنْهَا ۖ وَلَهُمْ عَذَابٌ مُقِيمٌ {37}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:37] (see commentary for verse 36)

وَالسَّارِقُ وَالسَّارِقَةُ فَاقْطَعُوا أَيْدِيَهُمَا جَزَاءً بِمَا كَسَبَا نَكَالًا مِنَ اللَّهِ ۗ وَاللَّهُ عَزِيزٌ حَكِيمٌ {38}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:38]

Next to high moral education and deep religious upbringing, it is fear of consequences, as experience proves, that keeps in check the tendency to steal and thieve. Adultery destroys purity of character and rends asunder the peace and harmony of human society. Thievery upsets the social and economic structure of the social life of a community. It snatches away happiness from the people and exposes them to misery. Therefore, these two crimes have been particularly underlined for severe punishment. The penalty prescribed in this verse is a divine statute, and is not to be taken lightly. Adultery and thievery are the “hallmark” of modern (so-called) civilised nations. They have failed to keep these crimes in check because they do not agree with the injunctions prescribed by Islam. One day they will be destroyed by adultery and thievery if not by their nuclear weapons.

فَمَنْ تَابَ مِنْ بَعْدِ ظُلْمِهِ وَأَصْلَحَ فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ يَتُوبُ عَلَيْهِ ۗ إِنَّ اللَّهَ غَفُورٌ رَحِيمٌ {39}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:39]

Refer to verse 34 of this surah.

أَلَمْ تَعْلَمْ أَنَّ اللَّهَ لَهُ مُلْكُ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضِ يُعَذِّبُ مَنْ يَشَاءُ وَيَغْفِرُ لِمَنْ يَشَاءُ ۗ وَاللَّهُ عَلَىٰ كُلِّ شَيْءٍ قَدِيرٌ {40}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:40]

Refer to the commentary of al Baqarah: 255 for Allah’s dominion of the heavens and the earth.

يَا أَيُّهَا الرَّسُولُ لَا يَحْزُنْكَ الَّذِينَ يُسَارِعُونَ فِي الْكُفْرِ مِنَ الَّذِينَ قَالُوا آمَنَّا بِأَفْوَاهِهِمْ وَلَمْ تُؤْمِنْ قُلُوبُهُمْ ۛ وَمِنَ الَّذِينَ هَادُوا ۛ سَمَّاعُونَ لِلْكَذِبِ سَمَّاعُونَ لِقَوْمٍ آخَرِينَ لَمْ يَأْتُوكَ ۖ يُحَرِّفُونَ الْكَلِمَ مِنْ بَعْدِ مَوَاضِعِهِ ۖ يَقُولُونَ إِنْ أُوتِيتُمْ هَٰذَا فَخُذُوهُ وَإِنْ لَمْ تُؤْتَوْهُ فَاحْذَرُوا ۚ وَمَنْ يُرِدِ اللَّهُ فِتْنَتَهُ فَلَنْ تَمْلِكَ لَهُ مِنَ اللَّهِ شَيْئًا ۚ أُولَٰئِكَ الَّذِينَ لَمْ يُرِدِ اللَّهُ أَنْ يُطَهِّرَ قُلُوبَهُمْ ۚ لَهُمْ فِي الدُّنْيَا خِزْيٌ ۖ وَلَهُمْ فِي الْآخِرَةِ عَذَابٌ عَظِيمٌ {41}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:41]

“Those who say: We believe, but do not believe in their hearts and hasten to outpace others in infidelity” are the hypocrites. He who professed the faith with his mouth in the presence of the Holy Prophet was not a believer. Such hypocrites, after the Holy Prophet, persecuted his Ahl ul Bayt, usurped their rights, and killed them. They have been grouped with the Jews who used to give ear to lies, spy on behalf of others and distort the words of God out of context (see commentary of al Baqarah: 75 to 79 and 104). They only agreed with that which was mentioned in their corrupted books.

According to an agreement between the two Jewish tribes of Madina (Bani Nadhir and Bani Qurayza) if a man of Bani Nadhir killed a man of Bani Qurayza, he would only pay half of the blood-money and would be paraded in the streets sitting on a camel with his face towards its tail On the other hand the murderer from the Bani Qurayza would pay full blood-money and would also face death if he killed any one of the Bani Nadhir tribe. This unjust arrangement was imposed on Bani Qurayza with the help of Abdullah bin Obayy. After the arrival of the Holy Prophet in Madina, a case of murder was referred to him for arbitration by both the tribes because the murderer, who belonged to Bani Qurayza, refused to comply with the terms of the unjust agreement which, his tribe declared, was against the law of Musa. The tribe of Bani Nadhir tried to influence the Holy Prophet through Abdullah bin Obay for obtaining his judgement in their favour, with the reservation that if he did not oblige them his judgement would not be accepted. It is reported that on that occasion this verse was revealed.

Please refer to the commentary of Ali Imran: 23 for the judgement the Holy Prophet gave in a case of adultery according to the law of Musa. The choice whether to act as an arbitrator in the suits and disputes of the Jews, devourers of gains through unlawful means, entirely lay with the Holy Prophet. The Madinite Jews, true to their traditions of mischief, sometimes submitted their disputes to the Holy Prophet for decision to test and try his knowledge of their law.

They did not approach him as bonafide seekers of justice, with any honest motives at all, because they declined to abide by the decision of the Holy Prophet, made in the light of the law of Musa, whenever it went against them.

سَمَّاعُونَ لِلْكَذِبِ أَكَّالُونَ لِلسُّحْتِ ۚ فَإِنْ جَاءُوكَ فَاحْكُمْ بَيْنَهُمْ أَوْ أَعْرِضْ عَنْهُمْ ۖ وَإِنْ تُعْرِضْ عَنْهُمْ فَلَنْ يَضُرُّوكَ شَيْئًا ۖ وَإِنْ حَكَمْتَ فَاحْكُمْ بَيْنَهُمْ بِالْقِسْطِ ۚ إِنَّ اللَّهَ يُحِبُّ الْمُقْسِطِينَ {42}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:42] (see commentary for verse 41)

وَكَيْفَ يُحَكِّمُونَكَ وَعِنْدَهُمُ التَّوْرَاةُ فِيهَا حُكْمُ اللَّهِ ثُمَّ يَتَوَلَّوْنَ مِنْ بَعْدِ ذَٰلِكَ ۚ وَمَا أُولَٰئِكَ بِالْمُؤْمِنِينَ {43}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:43] (see commentary for verse 41)

إِنَّا أَنْزَلْنَا التَّوْرَاةَ فِيهَا هُدًى وَنُورٌ ۚ يَحْكُمُ بِهَا النَّبِيُّونَ الَّذِينَ أَسْلَمُوا لِلَّذِينَ هَادُوا وَالرَّبَّانِيُّونَ وَالْأَحْبَارُ بِمَا اسْتُحْفِظُوا مِنْ كِتَابِ اللَّهِ وَكَانُوا عَلَيْهِ شُهَدَاءَ ۚ فَلَا تَخْشَوُا النَّاسَ وَاخْشَوْنِ وَلَا تَشْتَرُوا بِآيَاتِي ثَمَنًا قَلِيلًا ۚ وَمَنْ لَمْ يَحْكُمْ بِمَا أَنْزَلَ اللَّهُ فَأُولَٰئِكَ هُمُ الْكَافِرُونَ {44}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:44]

The original Tawrat contained guidance (huda) and light (nur) in order to dispel the darkness of ignorance, in accordance with which the Israelite prophets, who had submitted to Allah(aslamu), gave instructions to the Jews, as did the rabbis and priests who remembered the true wordings of the original book. This verse does not testify the integrity of the corrupted book the Jews now refer to as their revealed book, known as the Old Testament (refer to “The Tawrat” at the end of al-Ma-idah). The rabbis and priests were the witnesses of Allah’s writ because they had memorised and kept safe (istahfizu- from hifz) the true text of the original book.

It should be noted that although the original Tawrat had been corrupted by the Jews but some important and basic essentials were kept safe in the memory of some of their honest scholars; whereas Allah Himself has taken the responsibility of keeping the Quran in original form without any additions or omissions (Hijr: 9). The declaration of the Holy Prophet (refer to hadith al thaqalayn on page 6) points to the divinely chosen custodians of the book of Allah.

“Those who do not judge by Allah’s revelations are disbelievers indeed” applies also to those Muslims who do not follow the verdict given in verse 65 of an Nisa-unconditional obedience to whatever the Holy Prophet decided. Many of them failed to adhere to his declaration at Ghadir Khum. They neither listened to his advice of “remaining attached to his Ahl ul Bayt and the Quran”, nor accepted Ali as his successor; on the contrary they quarrelled among themselves on the issue of his successorship by putting forward their own arguments in Saqifa bani Sa-ida, notwithstanding his clear guidance given to them a few months before at Ghadir Khum.

Aqa Mahdi Puya says:

Only the prophets and the pious divines who had submitted to Allah, were entrusted with the responsibility of giving judgements according to the Tawrat. The people had no right to use their discretion. Likewise the Quran was not abandoned to the eccentric and unreliable evaluation of common people as wrongly concluded by a group of the Holy Prophet’s companions who believed in hasbuna kitabullah (sufficient for us is the book of Allah). On the contrary the Holy Prophet joined his Ahl ul Bayt with the Quran as the infallible guardians of its integrity, meanings and application (hadith al thaqalayn). There is no doubt about its genuineness. It has been kept safe from corruption. Allah, the Holy Prophet and his Ahl Bayt have preserved its originality for the guidance of mankind till the end of the world. Through the Quran the other heavenly scriptures have also been preserved. Therefore, their original and true texts will be made known to the people by the awaited holy Imam in order to expose the corrupted and distorted editions of these two holy books, the Jews and the Christian present before the world as the word of God.

وَكَتَبْنَا عَلَيْهِمْ فِيهَا أَنَّ النَّفْسَ بِالنَّفْسِ وَالْعَيْنَ بِالْعَيْنِ وَالْأَنْفَ بِالْأَنْفِ وَالْأُذُنَ بِالْأُذُنِ وَالسِّنَّ بِالسِّنِّ وَالْجُرُوحَ قِصَاصٌ ۚ فَمَنْ تَصَدَّقَ بِهِ فَهُوَ كَفَّارَةٌ لَهُ ۚ وَمَنْ لَمْ يَحْكُمْ بِمَا أَنْزَلَ اللَّهُ فَأُولَٰئِكَ هُمُ الظَّالِمُونَ {45}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:45]

“Wherever hurt is done, you shall give life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, burn for burn, bruise for bruise, wound for wound.”

(Exodus 21: 23 to 25)

Please refer to Exodus 21: 1 to 36; Exodus 22: 1 to 24; and Leviticus 24: 13 to 23 which confirm the law of retribution prescribed by Islam, but the Christians, for no reason at all, refuse to accept the divine commandments, inspite of the fact that Isa had clearly stated: Do not suppose that I have come to abolish the law (Tawrat) or the prophets; I did not come to abolish, but to complete (Matthew 5: 17).

وَقَفَّيْنَا عَلَىٰ آثَارِهِمْ بِعِيسَى ابْنِ مَرْيَمَ مُصَدِّقًا لِمَا بَيْنَ يَدَيْهِ مِنَ التَّوْرَاةِ ۖ وَآتَيْنَاهُ الْإِنْجِيلَ فِيهِ هُدًى وَنُورٌ وَمُصَدِّقًا لِمَا بَيْنَ يَدَيْهِ مِنَ التَّوْرَاةِ وَهُدًى وَمَوْعِظَةً لِلْمُتَّقِينَ {46}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:46]

In the train of the Israelite prophets Isa was sent to confirm and verify the basic doctrines of the universal religion of Allah-unity and justice of Allah, truthfulness of all the prophets, and prophethood of the last prophet of Allah, the Holy Prophet.

In the end of this verse it is stated that every book of Allah was a guidance to the muttaqin (who safeguard themselves against evil with full awareness of Allah’s laws), as has been said in verse 2 of al Baqarah.

The original Tawrat, revealed to Musa, has been confirmed by the original Injil, given to Isa. The false books in the hands of the Jews and the Christians have not been referred to here.

وَلْيَحْكُمْ أَهْلُ الْإِنْجِيلِ بِمَا أَنْزَلَ اللَّهُ فِيهِ ۚ وَمَنْ لَمْ يَحْكُمْ بِمَا أَنْزَلَ اللَّهُ فَأُولَٰئِكَ هُمُ الْفَاسِقُونَ {47}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:47]

The Christians, as the Jews in verse 44 of this surah, have been warned not to use their own discretion but to judge in the light of the revealed books.

Aqa Mahdi Puya says:

Those who do not act by that which has been revealed have been described as infidels in verse 44, unjust in verse 45, and transgressors in verse 47 (of this surah). There is no justification in restricting the application of these descriptions to the Jews and the Christians only, because any one, Muslim or non-Muslim, who does not submit to the absolute authority of Allah’s commands and guidance becomes a kafir (infidel), or a zalim (unjust), or a fasiq (transgressor) according to the degree of disobedience he has employed in his actions.

وَأَنْزَلْنَا إِلَيْكَ الْكِتَابَ بِالْحَقِّ مُصَدِّقًا لِمَا بَيْنَ يَدَيْهِ مِنَ الْكِتَابِ وَمُهَيْمِنًا عَلَيْهِ ۖ فَاحْكُمْ بَيْنَهُمْ بِمَا أَنْزَلَ اللَّهُ ۖ وَلَا تَتَّبِعْ أَهْوَاءَهُمْ عَمَّا جَاءَكَ مِنَ الْحَقِّ ۚ لِكُلٍّ جَعَلْنَا مِنْكُمْ شِرْعَةً وَمِنْهَاجًا ۚ وَلَوْ شَاءَ اللَّهُ لَجَعَلَكُمْ أُمَّةً وَاحِدَةً وَلَٰكِنْ لِيَبْلُوَكُمْ فِي مَا آتَاكُمْ ۖ فَاسْتَبِقُوا الْخَيْرَاتِ ۚ إِلَى اللَّهِ مَرْجِعُكُمْ جَمِيعًا فَيُنَبِّئُكُمْ بِمَا كُنْتُمْ فِيهِ تَخْتَلِفُونَ {48}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:48]

“To each of you (every people or community) Allah has given a law and a way and a pattern of life”, before the revelation of the final law, the Quran, which confirms the earlier revelations and preserves them from change and corruption. The word “guardian” has been exclusively used for the Quran in connection with the other revealed books. Refer to the commentary of verse 44 of this surah. Therefore Islam is a universal religion. Please refer to the commentary of al Baqarah: 4, 136 and 285; al Nisa: 150.

Aqa Mahdi Puya says:

According to verse 42 of this surah, if the people of the book refer their disputes to the Holy Prophet or any of his successor, it can be judged in the light of their books or in accordance with the Islamic law, or it can be referred back to their own jurists.

وَأَنِ احْكُمْ بَيْنَهُمْ بِمَا أَنْزَلَ اللَّهُ وَلَا تَتَّبِعْ أَهْوَاءَهُمْ وَاحْذَرْهُمْ أَنْ يَفْتِنُوكَ عَنْ بَعْضِ مَا أَنْزَلَ اللَّهُ إِلَيْكَ ۖ فَإِنْ تَوَلَّوْا فَاعْلَمْ أَنَّمَا يُرِيدُ اللَّهُ أَنْ يُصِيبَهُمْ بِبَعْضِ ذُنُوبِهِمْ ۗ وَإِنَّ كَثِيرًا مِنَ النَّاسِ لَفَاسِقُونَ {49}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:49]

These verses should be studied in the light of verses 42 to 48 of this surah. The Jews used to come to the Holy Prophet as contending parties but always flouted his authority after seeking his judgement if it was against their worldly interests; and inspite of their high-sounding talk of the scripture-learning, stooped low to be judged by the laws and customs of paganism.

Aqa Mahdi Puya says:.

Verse 50 was quoted by Bibi Fatimah Zahra in her address to the assembly of her father’s companions when the first caliph, depriving her of the inheritance she had received from her father (the Holy Prophet), wrongfully confiscated her lands in Fadak. Please refer to her biography published by our Trust to know the issue of Fadak; and study the commentary of al Baqarah: 9 which makes clear the fate of those who harassed annoyed and oppressed her.

أَفَحُكْمَ الْجَاهِلِيَّةِ يَبْغُونَ ۚ وَمَنْ أَحْسَنُ مِنَ اللَّهِ حُكْمًا لِقَوْمٍ يُوقِنُونَ {50}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:50] (see commentary for verse 49)

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا لَا تَتَّخِذُوا الْيَهُودَ وَالنَّصَارَىٰ أَوْلِيَاءَ ۘ بَعْضُهُمْ أَوْلِيَاءُ بَعْضٍ ۚ وَمَنْ يَتَوَلَّهُمْ مِنْكُمْ فَإِنَّهُ مِنْهُمْ ۗ إِنَّ اللَّهَ لَا يَهْدِي الْقَوْمَ الظَّالِمِينَ {51}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:51]

The Jews and the Christians had much in common, and therefore readily formed an alliance against Islam. so anyone who makes them his friends must have some points of identity with them. A believer, in order to keep himself safe from the influence of falsehood, must avoid the company of disbelievers. The doctrines of tawalla (staying attached with the Ahl ul Bayt) and tabarra(avoiding the enemies of Allah, the Holy Prophet and his Ahl ul Bayt) are the articles of the faith of them followers of Muhammad and ali Muhammad.

The Holy Prophet said:

Do not adopt the style and mannerism of my enemies, lest you may be considered as one of them. He who appears like a certain type shall be identified as of that type.

فَتَرَى الَّذِينَ فِي قُلُوبِهِمْ مَرَضٌ يُسَارِعُونَ فِيهِمْ يَقُولُونَ نَخْشَىٰ أَنْ تُصِيبَنَا دَائِرَةٌ ۚ فَعَسَى اللَّهُ أَنْ يَأْتِيَ بِالْفَتْحِ أَوْ أَمْرٍ مِنْ عِنْدِهِ فَيُصْبِحُوا عَلَىٰ مَا أَسَرُّوا فِي أَنْفُسِهِمْ نَادِمِينَ {52}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:52]

“In whose hearts is a disease only hasten towards them saying: we fear lest a reverse (misfortune) may befall us” refers to the hypocrites. Victory for the Muslims and punishment for their enemies have been promised in this verse.

وَيَقُولُ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا أَهَٰؤُلَاءِ الَّذِينَ أَقْسَمُوا بِاللَّهِ جَهْدَ أَيْمَانِهِمْ ۙ إِنَّهُمْ لَمَعَكُمْ ۚ حَبِطَتْ أَعْمَالُهُمْ فَأَصْبَحُوا خَاسِرِينَ {53}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:53]

The conspiracies and artifices of the hypocrites will be rendered useless. They shall not succeed in their schemes.

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا مَنْ يَرْتَدَّ مِنْكُمْ عَنْ دِينِهِ فَسَوْفَ يَأْتِي اللَّهُ بِقَوْمٍ يُحِبُّهُمْ وَيُحِبُّونَهُ أَذِلَّةٍ عَلَى الْمُؤْمِنِينَ أَعِزَّةٍ عَلَى الْكَافِرِينَ يُجَاهِدُونَ فِي سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ وَلَا يَخَافُونَ لَوْمَةَ لَائِمٍ ۚ ذَٰلِكَ فَضْلُ اللَّهِ يُؤْتِيهِ مَنْ يَشَاءُ ۚ وَاللَّهُ وَاسِعٌ عَلِيمٌ {54}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:54]

A careful study of verses 54 and 55 indicates that they have no relation with the preceding verses prohibiting friendship with infidels. The subject matter of verse 54 is quite different. It is in praise of Ali, about his nomination to political and religious leadership; and wherein the renegades have been warned of his might and valour, and frightened of his great overwhelming influence.

The Holy Prophet said:

“The resolute co-operation among the Quraysh will not dissipate unless Allah appoints over you a man whose heart Allah has tested through severe trial of faith. He will strike your necks and you will be as afraid of him as frightened sheep.”

Whereupon Abu Bakr inquired if he was that man and Umar inquired if he was that man. The Holy Prophet replied: “No. But the person who is mending shoes inside the room is that man.” And Ali turned up with shoes in his hand which he was repairing for the Holy Prophet.

Many traditionists have recorded it with slight variations-Ahmad ibn Hanbal in his Musnad, Hakim in his Mustadrak, Abu Yala in his Musnad, and Muttaqi in his Kanz al Ummal.

It is a warning about Ali’s might, as explained by himself on the day of the battle of Jamal. Tha-labi has mentioned it in his Tafsir and the compiler of Majma al Bayan has reproduced it as related by Ammar, Hudhayfah and Ibn Abbas. This becomes clearer when we notice the fact that verse 55 (innama waliyukum) follows this verse, wherein Allah has suggested His superior authority and hinted at the necessity of Ali’s leadership (imamat). Verse 55 explains and clarifies the reference in verse 54.

“In the battle of Khaybar the second caliph (like other companions) tried to conquer the fort, but took to flight when the Jew soldiers overpowered his contingent. Before the Holy Prophet they blamed each other for showing cowardice in the battlefield.”

(Tarikh Tabari Vol. 2; page 300)

The Holy Prophet said:

“Certainly (the next morning) I will send the man whom Allah will never put to shame, who loves Allah and His messenger and is equally loved by Allah and His messenger.”

Utter disappointment was the lot of many a companion who yearned for this distinction – “Allah shall bring a people whom He shall love and who shall love Him”, as has been clearly pointed out in this verse. Ahmad ibn Hanbal in his Musnad, vol. 1, p. 330; Nisa-i in Khasa-is al Alawiyyah, p. 6; Hakim in his Mustadrak, Vol. 3, p. 123; and Dhahabi in his Talkhis have recorded this tradition in the “ten excellent merits” of Ali, not possessed by anybody else.

“Striving hard in the way of Allah”, refers to no one but Ali, who, in all the battles fought by the Holy Prophet (Badr, Uhad, Khandaq, Khaybar and others-refer to authentic books of history written by well-known Muslim scholars), not only defeated and destroyed the enemies of Allah but demolished their power base beyond recovery.

Aqa Mahdi Puya says:

The qualities, mentioned in this verse and verse 29 of al Fat-h (according to well-known traditions written in Sahihs, Musnads and Tafsirs), were owned by no one but Ali. In all the battles fought by the Holy Prophet against the enemies of Allah, the Shaykhayn (the first caliph and the second caliph) never played a decisive role in any battle, nor won victory in single combats or general confrontations; on the contrary they were always either overpowered or ran away from the scene of action. More often they did not carry out the orders given to them by the Holy Prophet. The Holy Prophet knew that Dhith-Thadiyyah was an apostate, so he asked the Shaykhayn to kill him, but they disobeyed and spared his life; and it was this renegade who, according to Sahih Bukhari and others, became the leader of the Khawarij, and was finally killed by Ali in the battle of Nahrawan.

No doubt the Shaykhan and their adherents were severe and hard against the Ahl ul Bayt and their followers .

“Allah shall bring a people”, refers to those who, later on, gathered under the banner of Ali (whose qualities have been clearly described in this verse and verse 29 of al Fat-h), in the battles of Jamal, Siffin and Nahrawan. When Ammar ibn Yasir was asked as to how could he fight against the people who professed Islam, he replied: “We fight under the banner of Ali against those who are under the banner of Mu-awiyah, in keeping with the Quran. They professed Islam but concealed infidelity in their hearts, and have now come out

in their true colour of apostasy.” The followers of Ali strive hard in the way of Allah, not fearing the criticism of the apostates. The devotees of the other Imams of Ahl ul Bayt also come in this category, and according to many commentators of all schools of thought in Islam (Majma ul Bayan) at the time of the reappearance of Imam al Mahdi the world will witness the true interpretation of these phrases of the Quran.

The Muslims did not oppose the actions taken against the apostates in the times of the Shaykhayn, but they criticised Ali ibn abi Talib for fighting against A-isha and Mu-awiyah; therefore, this verse refers only to Ali and his devotees.

There is no historical evidence to prove that the Holy Prophet ever referred to any fight by Abu Bakr, Umar or Uthman against the apostates, but he had predicted Ali’s fight against three types of apostates-nakithin (oath-breakers), qasitin (wrong-doers), maraqin (strayed ones). It was also foretold by him that Ammar Yasir would be killed by a group of insurgents.

إِنَّمَا وَلِيُّكُمُ اللَّهُ وَرَسُولُهُ وَالَّذِينَ آمَنُوا الَّذِينَ يُقِيمُونَ الصَّلَاةَ وَيُؤْتُونَ الزَّكَاةَ وَهُمْ رَاكِعُونَ {55}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:55]

All the commentators unanimously hold, as Qushaji admits in the Sharh al Tajrid on the subject of imamat, that this verse refers to Ali when he gave his ring to a beggar while bowing down in the course of his prayers. Nasa-i has also recorded this tradition in his Sahihah al Nasa-i, and so has the author of Al Jama Bayn al Sihah al Sittah (corroboration of the six authentic books) in discussion of the commentary on al Ma-idah, and so does Tha-labi in his Tafsir Kabir, and al Balakhi in his Yanabi has copied it from Ahmad bin Hanbal’s Musnad, vol. 5, margin of p. 38. Please refer to the commentary on this verse in Wahidi’s book Asbab al Nuzul (the circumstances of descent) which contains the tradition related by Ibn Abbas. Al Khatib has recorded the tradition in Al Muttafiq, and Ibn Marduwayh and Abu Shaykh in their Musnads. It is mentioned in Kanz al Ummal, vol. 6, p. 391, tradition no. 5991. In Ghayah al Maram, chapter 18, there are twenty four traditions from sources other than the Ahl ul Bayt, all supporting the above statement about the descent of this verse.

When Abi Ishaq Ahmad ibn Muhammad ibn Ibrahim Naysaburi al Tha-labi reached this verse he recorded the following in his Tafsir al Kabir on the authority of Abu Dharr al Ghifari, who said “Both of my ears may turn deaf and both my eyes may become blind if I speak a lie. I heard the Holy Prophet saying, ‘Ali is the guide of the righteous and the slayer of the infidels. He who has helped him is victorious and he who has abandoned him is forsaken’. One day I said my prayers in the company of the Holy Prophet; a beggar came to the masjid and begged for alms, but nobody gave him anything. Ali was in a state of ruku in the prayer. He pointed out his ring to the beggar, who approached him and removed the ring from his finger. Thereupon the Holy Prophet implored Allah, saying: ‘O Allah! My brother Musa begged You saying: My Lord, delight my heart and make my task easy and undo the knot in my tongue so that they may understand me, and appoint from among my kinsmen, Harun, my brother, as my vizier, and strengthen my back with him and make him participate in my mission so that we may glorify You and remember You more frequently. Certainly You see us-and You inspired him: O Musa! All your requests have been granted. (The Holy Prophet continued) Delight my heart and make my task easy and appoint from among my kinsmen Ali as my vizier and strengthen my back with him’. (Abu Dhar proceeds) By Allah, the Holy Prophet had not yet finished his supplication when the trustworthy Jibril descended to him with this verse”. (Ibn Khallikan says that Al Tha-labi was unique as a commentator of the Quran and his Tafsir al Kabir is superior to all other Tafsirs).

In this verse the word wali has been used in the meaning of guardian or master or who holds authority superior to others. Please refer to the origin of the word wali in Sihah or Mukhtar al Sihah or any other good dictionary. The lexicographers have explained that he who manages the affairs of and exercises authority for another person is the wali of that person. This verse, therefore, means that those who manage the affairs of the people (mankind) are superior to all men, and certainly they are Allah, His messenger, the Holy Prophet, and Ali, who possesses all the qualifications enumerated in this verse. Allah has simultaneously confirmed His wilayah (superior authority), that of His prophet and his wali (Ali) in unbroken succession. Allah’s wilayah isuniversal, so likewise, the wilayah of the Holy Prophet and his wali (Ali) must be so. It is not possible to assign to the word wali in this verse the meaning of a helper or a friend, etcetera, for help and friendship are not confined to these three only. All the faithful men and women, according to the holy book, are friends and helpers of one another. It is as obvious as can be that the word wali in this verse means, guardian, ruler, possessor of superior authority. It is in this sense that the word wali has been used by the Holy Prophet in the abovenoted tradition related by Al Tha-labi in his Tafsir al Kabir on the authority of Abu Dharr al Ghifari whom the Holy Prophet had given the title of siddiq (the truthful). There are other authentic traditions, given below, in which the word wali indicates its true meaning:

(i) Abu Dawud al Tayalisi has recorded in Isti-ab on the authority of Ibn Abbas, who said: “The Holy Prophet said to Ali, ‘You are the master (wali) of the faithful after me’.”

(ii) After an expedition, under the command of Ali, some of the men, who went with him, complained to the Holy Prophet about Ali’s refusal to oblige them favourably. The Holy Prophet turned to them with signs of displeasure on his face and said: “What do you want to do to Ali? Surely Ali is from me and I am from him, and after me he is the master (wali) of all the faithful.”

Nasa-i has recorded it in his Khasa-is al Alawiyyah, p. 17, Ahmad ibn Hanbal in his Musnad, vol. 4, p. 438; Hakim in Mustadrak, vol. 11, p. 11; Al Dhahabi in his Talkhis al Mustadrak; Ibn Shaybah and Jarir both have recorded it from whom Muttaqi of India has copied it in his Kanz al Ummal, vol. 6, p. 400; Tirmidhi has recorded it from Asqalani, mentioned in his account of Ali in his Isabah; Ibn Hadid has copied it from Tirmidhi in his Sharh al Nahj al Balagha, vol. 2, p. 450.

(iii) The Holy Prophet said to Buraydah:

“Am I not a more privileged master (mawla or wali) of the lives of the faithful than the faithful themselves? Ali is the master (wali or mawla) of those who believe me to be their master.”

Ahmad ibn Hanbal has recorded it in his Musnad, vol. 5, p. 356, Hakim has recorded it in his Mustadrak, vol. 3, p. 110, besides many other traditionists.

(iv) The Holy Prophet said:

“O Ali! After me you are the master of all the faithful.”

Hakim has recorded this tradition as reported by Ibn Abbas in his Mustadrak, vol. 3, p. 134; and Dhahabi in his Talkhis; Nasa-i in Khasa-is al Alawiyyah p. 6; Ahmad ibn Hanbal in Musnad vol. 1, p. 331.

“Ali is your wali after me”, means that Ali and none else will be the master of the faithful after the Holy Prophet. It confines in Ali the authority to manage the affairs of the ummah after him. It is, therefore, necessary to attach the same meaning to the word wali and to understand it in the same sense as has been pointed out above. Help, affection, love, friendship are not confined to any one person. All faithful men and women love and are friends of one another. If the meaning of wali is taken as helper or friend, then why the Holy Prophet took so much interest in, and attached so much importance to, clarifying emphatically what was obvious and evident, so as to repeat the declaration off and on? His perfect wisdom, his thorough impeccability and termination with him of the prophethood make him far above the indulgence of explaining the self-evident, emphasising the obvious and making unnecessary repetitions. Besides, the traditions lay down clearly that Ali is or will be master of the nation after the Holy Prophet, and this makes it all the more necessary to understand the word wali in the same sense and fix for it the same meaning as has been stated above. The abovenoted traditionists, commentators and historians also deal with the word wali or mawla as the “more privileged master of the lives of the faithful than the faithful themselves.”

“Those who believe” is in the plural form. How can it be applicable to an individual?

All the annotators, traditionists and historians agree that it was Na-im ibn Mas-ud al Ashja-i, whom Abu Sufyan gave ten camels for discouraging the Muslim, said to them: “Fear your enemies who have united against you and gathered in large numbers to attack you” (Ali Imran: 173), but in this verse “people said to them” (a plural form) has been used.

It was Ghawrath from the tribe of Banu Maharib, some scholars say, while others say that it was Umar ibn Jahash of the tribe of Banu Nadir, (a single man) single man) who drew out his sword to strike the Holy Prophet, but verse 11 of al Ma-idah describes it as “when a group of persons became so bold as to stretch their hands to you”-in plural form. Verse 120 of al Nahl says: “Ibrahim was certainly a people obedient to Allah”.

There are plenty of other examples of using the plural form for an individual.

Tabrasi, while commenting on this verse in his Majma al Bayan, says: “The plural form has been used for Ali in order to express his glory and eminence .”

Zamakhshari, in his Tafsir al Kashshaf, says:

“If you inquire how this plural word is applicable to Ali, who is an individual, I shall say that though this verse is about Ali, an individual, the plural form is used in order to persuade others to act similarly and give alms as readily as Ali did.”

The Imams among the Ahl ul Bayt have frequently referred to this verse as a proof of their rightful imamat and have assigned the same meaning to the word wali as we have stated.

The word innama makes the decision of Allah (that He, the Holy Prophet and Ali alone are the masters of the believers) final and decisive. The construction of the sentence and the word wali,used in singular for all the three, means that wilayah of all the three is essentially one in nature as well as in effect. Therefore, obedience to the Holy Prophet must be as it should be to Allah, and obedience to Ali and his successors (the Imams among the Ahl ul Bayt) must be as it should be to the Holy Prophet.

Wa hum raki-un is an adverbial clause qualifying the manner in which the alms were given. If it is taken as a conjunctive clause, then yuqimunas salat or this clause becomes an unnecessary repetition.

In fact this verse points out the highest state of spiritual attainment-fully absorbed in witnessing the glory of the absolute Lord and at the same time alive to the needs of His servants so as to solve them at once to their full satisfaction- which alone entitles a man to be a master like the eternal master, the almighty Allah. The Quran a asserts this possibility for such a man, not for all the followers because they have been addressed in

second person (kum). The plural term “those who believe” is used to include the Imams among the Ahl ul Bayt in the same way as has been done in verse 61 of Ali Imran (Mubahilah).

Please also refer to verse 67 of this surah for the event of Ghadir Khum where the Holy Prophet openly declared Ali as the wali or mawla of the faithfuls just as the Holy Prophet himself is. The entire Muslim nation is unanimous that when the verses of the Quran were collected they were not arranged in the same order in which they descended. There is many a verse occurring in an irrelevant context, for instance, the verse of purification, which occurs in the account of the wives of the Holy Prophet, but actually is in praise of the five persons of al kisa, as has been universally admitted. All Muslims are agreed that arguments are to be preferred to the context, and whenever the implication of the context was opposed to the implication of arguments they ignored the context and yielded to the arguments, because they were doubtful about the context in which a certain verse occurs.

وَمَنْ يَتَوَلَّ اللَّهَ وَرَسُولَهُ وَالَّذِينَ آمَنُوا فَإِنَّ حِزْبَ اللَّهِ هُمُ الْغَالِبُونَ {56}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:56]

Whoever takes Allah, His messenger and “those who believe” (particularised in the preceding verse) as his master, joins Allah’s party-only Allah’s party will be successful in the end. This verse is in continuation of the preceding verse.

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا لَا تَتَّخِذُوا الَّذِينَ اتَّخَذُوا دِينَكُمْ هُزُوًا وَلَعِبًا مِنَ الَّذِينَ أُوتُوا الْكِتَابَ مِنْ قَبْلِكُمْ وَالْكُفَّارَ أَوْلِيَاءَ ۚ وَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ إِنْ كُنْتُمْ مُؤْمِنِينَ {57}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:57]

See commentary of verse 51 of this surah.

وَإِذَا نَادَيْتُمْ إِلَى الصَّلَاةِ اتَّخَذُوهَا هُزُوًا وَلَعِبًا ۚ ذَٰلِكَ بِأَنَّهُمْ قَوْمٌ لَا يَعْقِلُونَ {58}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:58]

The ignorant and stupid people of the book and the infidels, mentioned in the preceding verse, make fun of the azan (call to prayers), therefore, they must not be befriended.

قُلْ يَا أَهْلَ الْكِتَابِ هَلْ تَنْقِمُونَ مِنَّا إِلَّا أَنْ آمَنَّا بِاللَّهِ وَمَا أُنْزِلَ إِلَيْنَا وَمَا أُنْزِلَ مِنْ قَبْلُ وَأَنَّ أَكْثَرَكُمْ فَاسِقُونَ {59}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:59]

The Muslims believed in Allah and the book sent down to the Holy Prophet and also in the books sent down to earlier prophets, but the Jews and the Christians, rejecting all the books, always found fault with that which the Muslims believed.

Dhalika in verse 60 refers to the statement made in verse 59, comparing those mentioned in verse 59 with those mentioned in verse 60, who are worse than them. Verse 61, wherein the hypocrites have been referred to, should be read alongwith these verses. The words apes and swines may refer to their character which will make them appear as such in the life of the hereafter.

See commentary of al Baqarah: 65 and 256 for apes (qiradata) and false gods (taghut). Please note that cursing the wicked is a godly act.

قُلْ هَلْ أُنَبِّئُكُمْ بِشَرٍّ مِنْ ذَٰلِكَ مَثُوبَةً عِنْدَ اللَّهِ ۚ مَنْ لَعَنَهُ اللَّهُ وَغَضِبَ عَلَيْهِ وَجَعَلَ مِنْهُمُ الْقِرَدَةَ وَالْخَنَازِيرَ وَعَبَدَ الطَّاغُوتَ ۚ أُولَٰئِكَ شَرٌّ مَكَانًا وَأَضَلُّ عَنْ سَوَاءِ السَّبِيلِ {60}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:60] (see commentary for verse 59)

وَإِذَا جَاءُوكُمْ قَالُوا آمَنَّا وَقَدْ دَخَلُوا بِالْكُفْرِ وَهُمْ قَدْ خَرَجُوا بِهِ ۚ وَاللَّهُ أَعْلَمُ بِمَا كَانُوا يَكْتُمُونَ {61}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:61] (see commentary for verse 59)

وَتَرَىٰ كَثِيرًا مِنْهُمْ يُسَارِعُونَ فِي الْإِثْمِ وَالْعُدْوَانِ وَأَكْلِهِمُ السُّحْتَ ۚ لَبِئْسَ مَا كَانُوا يَعْمَلُونَ {62}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:62]

Suht is any income earned by forbidden means. Please refer to Isiah 1: 23- 56: 11: ;59: 27; and Micah 3: 10, 11; and Proverbs 1 :16, wherein the Old Testament, inspite of being profusely corrupted, confirms that which is stated in this verse about the Jews.

“Their rulers sell justice, their priests give directions in return for a bribe” says verse 11 of Micah. From the lowest of them even unto the greatest of them every one was given to covetousness.

Verse 63 lays down the basis of amr bil ma-ruf and nahya anil munkar (refer to Ali Imran: 110).

لَوْلَا يَنْهَاهُمُ الرَّبَّانِيُّونَ وَالْأَحْبَارُ عَنْ قَوْلِهِمُ الْإِثْمَ وَأَكْلِهِمُ السُّحْتَ ۚ لَبِئْسَ مَا كَانُوا يَصْنَعُونَ {63}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:63] (see commentary for verse 62)

وَقَالَتِ الْيَهُودُ يَدُ اللَّهِ مَغْلُولَةٌ ۚ غُلَّتْ أَيْدِيهِمْ وَلُعِنُوا بِمَا قَالُوا ۘ بَلْ يَدَاهُ مَبْسُوطَتَانِ يُنْفِقُ كَيْفَ يَشَاءُ ۚ وَلَيَزِيدَنَّ كَثِيرًا مِنْهُمْ مَا أُنْزِلَ إِلَيْكَ مِنْ رَبِّكَ طُغْيَانًا وَكُفْرًا ۚ وَأَلْقَيْنَا بَيْنَهُمُ الْعَدَاوَةَ وَالْبَغْضَاءَ إِلَىٰ يَوْمِ الْقِيَامَةِ ۚ كُلَّمَا أَوْقَدُوا نَارًا لِلْحَرْبِ أَطْفَأَهَا اللَّهُ ۚ وَيَسْعَوْنَ فِي الْأَرْضِ فَسَادًا ۚ وَاللَّهُ لَا يُحِبُّ الْمُفْسِدِينَ {64}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:64]

It is reported that when the Muslims had to raise funds for their defence, the Jews made fun of the Muslims by saying that their God had become close-fisted. In fact they themselves were niggardly. They habitually uttered blasphemies. Allah, the almighty, is as generous as ever. He spends according to His infinite wisdom and universal plans. (Refer to the commentary ofrahmanir rahim and rabba alamin in surah al Fatihah). The Muslims willingly contributed to the defence fund to show their spirit of sacrifice in the way of Allah, who, through such circumstances, tests their faith in Him.

The revelations revealed to the Holy Prophet increased their (the Jews) rebellion and unbelief. They availed every opportunity to kindle the fire of war against the Muslims, but on all occasions it was extinguished by Allah either by raising feuds and quarrels among themselves, or by granting victory to the Muslims, yet secretly and stealthily, often very cunningly, they strived to spread corruption in the land.

وَلَوْ أَنَّ أَهْلَ الْكِتَابِ آمَنُوا وَاتَّقَوْا لَكَفَّرْنَا عَنْهُمْ سَيِّئَاتِهِمْ وَلَأَدْخَلْنَاهُمْ جَنَّاتِ النَّعِيمِ {65}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:65]

If the people of the book had believed in the true and final religion of Allah and the Holy Prophet, through whom it was conveyed, and refrained from vice and sin, as commanded in the code of Islamic law, Allah would surely have forgiven their past sins.

Islam invites people to the right path, walking on which earns pardon for all the past sins.

وَلَوْ أَنَّهُمْ أَقَامُوا التَّوْرَاةَ وَالْإِنْجِيلَ وَمَا أُنْزِلَ إِلَيْهِمْ مِنْ رَبِّهِمْ لَأَكَلُوا مِنْ فَوْقِهِمْ وَمِنْ تَحْتِ أَرْجُلِهِمْ ۚ مِنْهُمْ أُمَّةٌ مُقْتَصِدَةٌ ۖ وَكَثِيرٌ مِنْهُمْ سَاءَ مَا يَعْمَلُونَ {66}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:66]

If the people of the book had followed the teachings of the Tawrat and the Injil and the Quran they would have enjoyed blessings in both the worlds; but only very few of them become Muslims, and most of them are vile.

يَا أَيُّهَا الرَّسُولُ بَلِّغْ مَا أُنْزِلَ إِلَيْكَ مِنْ رَبِّكَ ۖ وَإِنْ لَمْ تَفْعَلْ فَمَا بَلَّغْتَ رِسَالَتَهُ ۚ وَاللَّهُ يَعْصِمُكَ مِنَ النَّاسِ ۗ إِنَّ اللَّهَ لَا يَهْدِي الْقَوْمَ الْكَافِرِينَ {67}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:67]

The followers of “Muhammad and ali Muhammad” are quite certain that this verse descended about the wilayah (regency) of Ali on the day of Ghadir Khum, and the traditions in our records on the subject are numerous and consecutively transmitted through the Imams of the holy posterity of the Holy Prophet, whose reporting is enough for us, and should also be so for the Muslims, because they alone are the truthful (sadiqin) as per verse 119 of al Tawbah (refer to Hafiz Abu Nu-aym; Muwaffaq ibn Ahmad; and Ibn Hajar in his Sawa-iq al Muhriqah, chap. 11, p. 90).

Ibn abi Hatim quotes Abu Sa-id Khudri and Antara; Ibn Marduwayh quotes Abdullah bin Masud and Abu Sa-id Khudri; Ibn Asakir quotes Abu Said Khudri; Abu Bakr Shirazi, Muhammad bin Talha Qarshi and Sayyid Ali al Hamdani quote Abdullah bin Abbas; Nizamuddin Nayshapuri quotes Abdullah bin Abbas, Abu Sa-id Khudri and Bara bin Azib, to say that this verse was revealed about the wilayah of Ali ibn abi Talib; and Sabbagh Maliki in Fusul al Muhimma; Badruddin Ayni in Umdatul Qari, Muhaddith Shirazi in Kitab al Arba-in; Shahabuddin Ahmad in Tawdih al Dala-il; and Mu-tamad Khan Badakhshani in Miftah al Nijat also confirm it.

Hafiz Abu Bakr bin Marduwayh in Manaqib quotes Abdullah bin Masud that during the life time of the Holy Prophet they used to recite this verse with Inna Aliyyan Mawla al mu-minin (Ali is the master of the faithful).

The shortest narration of the event of Ghadir is given below:

While returning from his last hajj, in 10 Hijra, the Holy Prophet, alongwith the huge caravan of nearly one hundred thousand Muslims, made a halt at Ghadir Khum, a midway stop between Makka and Madina.

He had received the following verse from Allah:

O Our Messenger! Deliver what has been sent down unto you from your Lord; and if you do not, then you have not delivered His Message; and surely Allah will protect you from men.”

(MA-IDAH: 67)

The Holy Prophet mounted a tall pulpit and delivered a long sermon, recounting his services towards the fulfilment of his mission as the messenger of Allah. He asked the audience whether he had conveyed to them the commands of Allah, enumerating them one after another.

The huge gathering, in one voice, said “yes”. “Do I wield authority over your souls more than you do?” He asked.

“Certainly it is so, O Messenger of Allah” . They replied.

Then he asked Ali to come up. He held him in both his hands, raised him high, so much that the whole assembly of men and women saw him clearly.

He again addressed them:

“O men and women! Allah is my Mawla (Lord-Master). I am the mawla of the faithfuls. I have a clear authority over their souls, And of whomsoever I am the mawla (this) Ali is his mawla. O Allah! Love him who loves Ali, hate him who hates Ali.”

At the end of this declaration the following verse was revealed:

“This day I have perfected for you, your religion, and have completed my favour on you, and have chosen for you Islam, as religion.”

(MA-IDAH: 3)

For those whose minds are clouded with the doubts created over the years by the enemies of the Holy Prophet and his holy Ahl ul Bayt, there are sufficient references in the books written by their own scholars whom they acclaim with one voice.

Several eminent traditionists have clearly stated it to be genuine. Even Ibn Hajar has admitted it to be genuine where he has copied the tradition from Tabarani and others; in Sawa-iq, sec. 5, chap. 1. p. 25.

Tabarani and others have recorded the following tradition as related by Zayd ibn Arqam and transmitted through sources unanimously acknowledged to be reliable. Zayd says that the Holy Prophet delivered a sermon at Ghadir Khum under a cloth spread as a canopy on two large trees. The Holy Prophet said:

“O my people! I am going to be recalled shortly and I must comply. I shall be interrogated and you also shall be interrogated. What will you say then?” The entire audience answered: “We shall bear witness that you did convey to us the message of Allah, and tried your best to guide us on the right path and always gave us good counsel. May Allah bless you with a good reward.” The Holy Prophet proceeded: “Why do you not bear witness that there is no god but Allah and that Muhammad is His slave and messenger, and that paradise is true, hell is true, death is true, resurrection after death is true, that the day of judgement will doubtlessly come and that Allah will raise to life the dead from their graves?” They said: “O Yes! We bear witness to all this.” Then he said: “O Allah! You also may witness.” Then he said: “O my people! Allah is my Mawla and I am mawla of the faithful and I have superior right on and control over their lives. And this Ali is the mawla of all those of whom I am mawla. O Allah! Love him who loves him and hate him who hates him.” He further said: “O my people! I will precede you, you also shall arrive at the pool of Kawthar, the pool wider than the distance between Basrah and Sana, and there are on the pool as many goblets of silver as stars. When you shall reach me I shall interrogate you about your behaviour towards the two invaluable assets after my death. The major asset is the book of Allah, one end of which is in the hand of Allah, and the other end in your hands. Grasp it tightly and do not go astray and do not change or amend it. The other asset is my progeny, who are my Ahl al Bayt. Allah has informed me that the two will not part from each other before they reach me at the pool.”

First of all he announced that the time of his death was fast approaching. This was a warning to the people that the time had come for the completion of his divine message and ensuring the future spiritual welfare of his followers by appointing his successor. This important matter brooked no delay, lest his death might arrive before properly establishing his successor in office.

As the appointment of his own brother (cousin) was very unpalatable for self-seekers, jealous and malicious persons, and the hypocrites, he thought it fit to appease their feelings and to calm their hearts by prefacing the declaration of appointment with “I shall be interrogated,” so that they might know that the Holy Prophet was in command from Allah to make this declaration and would be interrogated about discharging this important duty and, that there was no alternative.

Wahidi has stated in his book Asbab al Nuzul through reliable sources culminating with Abu Said al-Khudri that Chap. 5, Verse 67″ O Messenger; do proclaim what has descended upon you from your Lord” descended at Ghadir Khum about Ali ibn Abu Talib.

Daylami and others have recorded as related by Abu Said and as stated in Sawa-iq that the Holy Prophet said: “Call them to a halt. They will be interrogated about the superior authority and guardianship of Ali.” And Wahidi says: “They will be interrogated about the superior authority and guardianship of Ali and the Ahl al Bayt.”

This sermon calls for special attention. A careful perusal of it will reveal the truth that belief in the superior authority and guardianship of Ali is one of the fundamental principles of faith and this is what the Shi-as believe. The Holy Prophet first asked the audience to bear witness that Allah is the only God, that Muhammad is His slave and messenger, that the day of judgement is bound to come and that Allah will raise to life the dead from their graves. And when they had promised to bear witness to all these things and expressed their belief therein, he asked them to believe “Ali to be wali, i.e. defender of the faith, supreme commander of the faithful and favourite of Allah,” so that everybody might know that witnessing of belief in the wilayah of Ali was as important an article of faith as belief in the unity of Allah, the prophethood of Muhammad, the resurrection of the dead, and the day of judgement, and that he will be interrogated about it too. Anyone who follows the style of the sermon, the juxtaposition of sentences therein and the import of the words will reach the same unavoidable conclusion.

Mawla means master; lord; guardian; one more deserving of superior authority.

The words ana awla (I am superior) indicate that the word mawla means awla, i.e., superior. What the Holy Prophet meant by this sentence was, “Allah is superior in right and might to him and he is superior in right and might to the faithful and Ali is superior in right and might to all those to whom the Holy Prophet is superior.”

These are the words of Zayd ibn Arqam, who related the tradition. Tabarani, Ibn Jarir, Hakim and Tirmidhi all have recorded the tradition in identical words. Ibn Hajar has copied the tradition from Tabarani in his Sawa-iq, p. 25, and has stated that the tradition is accepted as genuine by all Muslims. Hakim has recorded in the chapter on the “Virtues of Ali” in Mustadrak (vol. 3, p. 109) this tradition as related by Zayd bin Arqam and transmitted through two different sources, and has stated that both the sources are reliable according to the standard set by Bukhari and Muslim. Hakim has recorded it also in the account of Zayd ibn Arqam in Mustadrak, vol. 3, p. 533, and held it to be genuine. In spite of his orthodoxy, Dhahabi has copied it from this chapter in his Talkhis from the account of Zayd.

Ahmad ibn Hanbal has recorded the tradition related by Zayd ibn Arqam (in his Musnad, vol. 4, p. 372). In Khasa-is al Alawiyyah, p. 21, Nasa-i has recorded this tradition as related by Zayd ibn Arqam.

Abu Tufayl says: “I asked Zayd if he had personally heard the Holy Prophet uttering the tradition related by him.” Zayd replied: “Everyone in the huge crowd saw the Holy Prophet with his own eyes and heard him (making the declaration) with his own ears.”

Abu Tufayl’s question to Zayd indicates his surprise at the action of the Muslim nation in disregarding the imperative instructions of the Holy Prophet in respect to Ali, in spite of the reports concerning the declaration the Holy Prophet made on the day of Ghadir about the prior right of Ali and his superior authority over the lives of the faithful, similar to the prior right and superior authority over the lives of the faithful held by the Holy Prophet himself. He was either extremely doubtful about the genuineness of the tradition of Ghadir, because the nation had settled the question of succession of the Holy Prophet by vote of allegiance in glaring contradiction of the Holy Prophet’s declaration, or astonished at the utter disregard by the followers of the Holy Prophet’s important declaration. He therefore inquired if Zayd had himself heard the Holy Prophet making the declaration. Zayd ibn Arqam replied that in spite of there being a huge crowd of men on the occasion there was not a single person who could not see the Holy Prophet with his own eyes and hear his words with his own ears. Zayd’s reply convinced him of the truth of what has been expressed by Kumayl, a prominent poet who composed poems in praise of Ali in the following lines:

“In the valley of Ghadir Khum the Holy Prophet had declared Ali to be his successor. Would that the nation had complied with the declaration.

But they decided the matter of succession by vote of allegiance; I have never witnessed casting a vote of allegiance about such an important matter.

I have neither witnessed another day so important as the day of Ghadir;

Nor have I ever seen so serious a destruction of right.”

Muslim has also recorded this tradition in the chapter on the ‘Virtues of Ali’ in his Sahih (vol. 2 p. 325) as related by Zayd ibn Arqam and transmitted through several sources. But he has recorded it briefly in a curtailed form as men of his class are apt to do about such matters.

Ahmad ibn Hanbal has recorded the tradition related by Bara ibn Azib in his Musnad, vol. 4, p. 281, transmitted through two different sources.

Bara says: “We were with the Messenger of Allah. “We alighted at Ghadir Khum. Congregational prayer was in order. An area under two trees was swept and cleaned for the Holy Prophet. He offered midday prayers and he grasped the hand of Ali and said: ‘Do you not know that I have greater authority over the lives of the faithful than the faithful themselves?” “Yes you have,” they replied. He again inquired: “‘Do you not know that I have greater right to the life of every believer than the believer himself?” “Surely, you have,” they answered. Then he grasped the hand of Ali and said: “Ali is the mawla of all those of whom I am mawla. O Allah! Love him who loves him and hate him who hates him.” Bara ibn Azib says: “Then Umar came to Ali and said: ‘Congratulations to you O the son of Abu Talib. You have become the mawla (master) of all the faithful men and women.” Nasa-i has recorded a tradition related by A-ishah bint Sad, who says that she heard her father saying that on the day of Ghadir he heard the Holy Prophet delivering a sermon while holding the hand of Ali. He praised and eulogised Allah and then he said: “O my people! I am your master.” “True it is, O messenger of Allah,” they responded. Then he raised the hand of Ali and said: “He is my wali, and he will repay my debts. I am a friend of him who loves him and an enemy of him who hates him.”

Sad also relates that he was among the people accompanying the Holy Prophet. When he reached Ghadir Khum he ordered a halt and called back those who had preceded him and waited for those who were lagging behind. When all the people gathered there he said: “O my people! Who is your wali (master)?” “Allah and His messenger,” they said. Then he grasped the hand of Ali and caused him to stand and said: “He is wali of whom Allah and His messenger are wali. O Allah! Love him who loves him and hate him who hates him.”

Shibli Nu-mani in Siratun Nabi (completed by Sayyid Sulayman Nadvi) writes:

While returning from Makka to Madina, after the last hajj, alongwith his companions, the Holy Prophet broke the journey at a lake, 3 miles away from Juhfa. A small lake is called ghadir in Arabic, so this place is known as Ghadir Khum. There, the Holy Pr

قُلْ يَا أَهْلَ الْكِتَابِ لَسْتُمْ عَلَىٰ شَيْءٍ حَتَّىٰ تُقِيمُوا التَّوْرَاةَ وَالْإِنْجِيلَ وَمَا أُنْزِلَ إِلَيْكُمْ مِنْ رَبِّكُمْ ۗ وَلَيَزِيدَنَّ كَثِيرًا مِنْهُمْ مَا أُنْزِلَ إِلَيْكَ مِنْ رَبِّكَ طُغْيَانًا وَكُفْرًا ۖ فَلَا تَأْسَ عَلَى الْقَوْمِ الْكَافِرِينَ {68}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:68]

Unless the Jews and the Christians sincerely follow the Tawrat and the Injil and the Quran, their faith is of no use. If they honestly refer to their scriptures they have to accept the Holy Prophet as the promised prophet mentioned in their books (see commentary of al Baqarah: 40), even after the omissions and additions they have made in the original revealed books of Allah.

The Christians of the first three centuries were Unitarians, but as explained in the commentary of Ali Imran: 2 and 3, the Christian church imposed upon them the idea of trinity.

Ma unzila ilaykum refers to the Quran, and ma unzila ilayka refers to that which was revealed to the Holy Prophet in the preceding verse regarding the wilayah of Ali ibn abu Talib.

Please refer to the commentary of al Baqarah: 62.

إِنَّ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَالَّذِينَ هَادُوا وَالصَّابِئُونَ وَالنَّصَارَىٰ مَنْ آمَنَ بِاللَّهِ وَالْيَوْمِ الْآخِرِ وَعَمِلَ صَالِحًا فَلَا خَوْفٌ عَلَيْهِمْ وَلَا هُمْ يَحْزَنُونَ {69}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:69]

لَقَدْ أَخَذْنَا مِيثَاقَ بَنِي إِسْرَائِيلَ وَأَرْسَلْنَا إِلَيْهِمْ رُسُلًا ۖ كُلَّمَا جَاءَهُمْ رَسُولٌ بِمَا لَا تَهْوَىٰ أَنْفُسُهُمْ فَرِيقًا كَذَّبُوا وَفَرِيقًا يَقْتُلُونَ {70}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:70]

For a similar reference to the covenant taken from the Jews refer to the commentary of al Baqarah: 83, and for their belying and slaying the prophets see commentary of al Baqarah: 61, Ali lmran: 21 ,112.

وَحَسِبُوا أَلَّا تَكُونَ فِتْنَةٌ فَعَمُوا وَصَمُّوا ثُمَّ تَابَ اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِمْ ثُمَّ عَمُوا وَصَمُّوا كَثِيرٌ مِنْهُمْ ۚ وَاللَّهُ بَصِيرٌ بِمَا يَعْمَلُونَ {71}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:71]

The Jews wrongly supposed that, as they were once the favourites of Allah, they would never be punished for their evil deeds, so they turned deaf and blind to the truth. Out of His mercy Allah sent many prophets to them but belying the prophets of Allah and slaying them had become their second nature.

Here fitna means affliction.

Aqa Mahdi Puya says:

This verse also refers to the usurpers, tyrants and despots who deviate from the prescribed path of Allah inspite of the warnings they receive from the pious and godly men. Instead of paying attention to the admonition, they persecute and kill the holy devotees of Allah, make some minor adjustments to deceive the people and continue to walk on the path of Shaytan. The so-called Muslim rulers, after breaking the covenant made at Ghadir Khum, followed this line of action, under the disguise of avoiding discord and trouble as if they knew more than Allah and the Holy Prophet.

لَقَدْ كَفَرَ الَّذِينَ قَالُوا إِنَّ اللَّهَ هُوَ الْمَسِيحُ ابْنُ مَرْيَمَ ۖ وَقَالَ الْمَسِيحُ يَا بَنِي إِسْرَائِيلَ اعْبُدُوا اللَّهَ رَبِّي وَرَبَّكُمْ ۖ إِنَّهُ مَنْ يُشْرِكْ بِاللَّهِ فَقَدْ حَرَّمَ اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ الْجَنَّةَ وَمَأْوَاهُ النَّارُ ۖ وَمَا لِلظَّالِمِينَ مِنْ أَنْصَارٍ {72}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:72]

The followers of the Christian Church say “Jesus is without qualification God, and the greater the contradiction to the mind, the more the heart responds to the wonder of the mystery”. The idea of trinity has been dealt with in the commentary of Ali-lmran: 2 and 3; also refer to al Baqarah: 255 for knowing the true faith of Isa.

“Jesus said: Be gone, Satan! Scripture says, “you shall worship the Lord God and worship him alone’.”

(Matthew 4: 10; Luke 4: 8)

“Jesus said to him: Why do you call me good? No one is good save one, that is, God.”

(Luke 18: 19)

Cheyne and Black’s Encyclopaedia Biblica says:

Jesus never refers to himself as the son of God, and the title upon him by others probably involves no more than the acknowledgement that he was the messiah. A critical study of the synoptical material leads invariably to the conclusion that Jesus never was addressed by that title.

Encyclopaedia Britannica says:

The Trinitarian baptismal formula does not go back to Jesus himself is evident and recognised by all independent critics.

“And for the unjust there shall be no helpers” implies that for those who are not unjust there will be helpers (intercessors).

لَقَدْ كَفَرَ الَّذِينَ قَالُوا إِنَّ اللَّهَ ثَالِثُ ثَلَاثَةٍ ۘ وَمَا مِنْ إِلَٰهٍ إِلَّا إِلَٰهٌ وَاحِدٌ ۚ وَإِنْ لَمْ يَنْتَهُوا عَمَّا يَقُولُونَ لَيَمَسَّنَّ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا مِنْهُمْ عَذَابٌ أَلِيمٌ {73}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:73] (see commentary for verse 72)

أَفَلَا يَتُوبُونَ إِلَى اللَّهِ وَيَسْتَغْفِرُونَهُ ۚ وَاللَّهُ غَفُورٌ رَحِيمٌ {74}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:74] (see commentary for verse 72)

مَا الْمَسِيحُ ابْنُ مَرْيَمَ إِلَّا رَسُولٌ قَدْ خَلَتْ مِنْ قَبْلِهِ الرُّسُلُ وَأُمُّهُ صِدِّيقَةٌ ۖ كَانَا يَأْكُلَانِ الطَّعَامَ ۗ انْظُرْ كَيْفَ نُبَيِّنُ لَهُمُ الْآيَاتِ ثُمَّ انْظُرْ أَنَّىٰ يُؤْفَكُونَ {75}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:75]

Isa was a mortal born of a mortal woman. Mere mortals and human beings as they were they needed food. Those who are required to support their lives by the same means, and are subject to the same necessities and infirmities as the rest of mankind, cannot be gods. Please refer to the commentary of Ali Imran: 35, 42 to 67 and al Ma-idah: 17.

If Isa did really possess the attributes or the nature of a god, he would have been above the common nature of a mortal. In fact he was, like Adam, Nuh, and Ibrahim, a prophet. No prophet however great and eminent and however superior to his fellow beings can, in any case. be God or part of God.

قُلْ أَتَعْبُدُونَ مِنْ دُونِ اللَّهِ مَا لَا يَمْلِكُ لَكُمْ ضَرًّا وَلَا نَفْعًا ۚ وَاللَّهُ هُوَ السَّمِيعُ الْعَلِيمُ {76}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:76]

The argument of the preceding verse continues that a created being who has no power over loss or gain cannot be worshipped as God. Subject to the laws of nature, as a mortal, Isa did not have any say in the circumstances of his life and death.

“And He (Isa) went on a little, fell on his face in prayer, and said: ‘My father, if it is possible, let this cup pass me by; yet not as I will, but as Thou wills.”

(Matthew 26: 39) It means he himself could not avoid death and prayed to Allah to let the cup pass him by if He willed.

“Eli, Eli, Sabachthani? (My God, my God, why has Thou forsaken me?)”

(Matthew 27: 46).

Isa wanted to know as to why his God (Allah) had forsaken him.

قُلْ يَا أَهْلَ الْكِتَابِ لَا تَغْلُوا فِي دِينِكُمْ غَيْرَ الْحَقِّ وَلَا تَتَّبِعُوا أَهْوَاءَ قَوْمٍ قَدْ ضَلُّوا مِنْ قَبْلُ وَأَضَلُّوا كَثِيرًا وَضَلُّوا عَنْ سَوَاءِ السَّبِيلِ {77}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:77]

The Christians should be loyal to their own faith as preached by Isa, and let not the paganish theories and practices corrupt the true message of Isa. St. Paul, the founder of latter-day Christianity owed much to the Greek philosophy. The contact of the Church with the Hellinic world led very early to the attempt to interpret the mysteries of the Christian faith in the terms of Greek philosophy . The process, however, so far as the books of the New Testament are concerned, is most conspicuous in the fourth gospel. The writer of this life of Isa was clearly influenced by platonism. This verse rightly points out that “they had erred and led many others astray, and wandered away from the right path.”

لُعِنَ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا مِنْ بَنِي إِسْرَائِيلَ عَلَىٰ لِسَانِ دَاوُودَ وَعِيسَى ابْنِ مَرْيَمَ ۚ ذَٰلِكَ بِمَا عَصَوْا وَكَانُوا يَعْتَدُونَ {78}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:78]

Those who rejected the faith propounded by the prophets of Allah, (such as those) who violated the Sabbath in the days of Dawud, (or those) who rejected the ministry of Isa, have been cursed in this verse. Cursing the disbelievers has been commanded by Allah-tabarra.

Refer to Matthew 21: 41 to 45 and 23: 33 to 35.

كَانُوا لَا يَتَنَاهَوْنَ عَنْ مُنْكَرٍ فَعَلُوهُ ۚ لَبِئْسَ مَا كَانُوا يَفْعَلُونَ {79}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:79]

The Jews did not restrain one another from evil (nahya anil munkar), therefore, they were so easily led astray. Nahya anil munkar has been prescribed by Islam. See commentary of Ali Imran : 101 to 115 (Aqa Puya’s note on amr bil ma-ruf and nahya anil munkar).

تَرَىٰ كَثِيرًا مِنْهُمْ يَتَوَلَّوْنَ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا ۚ لَبِئْسَ مَا قَدَّمَتْ لَهُمْ أَنْفُسُهُمْ أَنْ سَخِطَ اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِمْ وَفِي الْعَذَابِ هُمْ خَالِدُونَ {80}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:80]

This verse also commands the faithful to avoid the disbelievers-tabarra.

وَلَوْ كَانُوا يُؤْمِنُونَ بِاللَّهِ وَالنَّبِيِّ وَمَا أُنْزِلَ إِلَيْهِ مَا اتَّخَذُوهُمْ أَوْلِيَاءَ وَلَٰكِنَّ كَثِيرًا مِنْهُمْ فَاسِقُونَ {81}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:81]

According to Minhaj al Sadiqin an-nabiyy refers to the Holy Prophet and ma unzila ilayhi refers to the Quran, but some commentators say that the reference is to Musa and the Tawrat; and had the Jews believed in Allah, Musa and the Tawrat they would not have taken the pagans for friends, because there are clear prophecies in the Tawrat about the advent of the Holy Prophet (see commentary of al Baqarah: 40).

لَتَجِدَنَّ أَشَدَّ النَّاسِ عَدَاوَةً لِلَّذِينَ آمَنُوا الْيَهُودَ وَالَّذِينَ أَشْرَكُوا ۖ وَلَتَجِدَنَّ أَقْرَبَهُمْ مَوَدَّةً لِلَّذِينَ آمَنُوا الَّذِينَ قَالُوا إِنَّا نَصَارَىٰ ۚ ذَٰلِكَ بِأَنَّ مِنْهُمْ قِسِّيسِينَ وَرُهْبَانًا وَأَنَّهُمْ لَا يَسْتَكْبِرُونَ {82}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:82]

It is impossible to exaggerate the formidable quality of the Jew as an enemy. The Jews and idolaters were most excessive in hatred of the believers, but those who said: “We are the followers of Isa”, were closer to the Muslims because the priests and monks among the early Christians were not Trinitarians.

وَإِذَا سَمِعُوا مَا أُنْزِلَ إِلَى الرَّسُولِ تَرَىٰ أَعْيُنَهُمْ تَفِيضُ مِنَ الدَّمْعِ مِمَّا عَرَفُوا مِنَ الْحَقِّ ۖ يَقُولُونَ رَبَّنَا آمَنَّا فَاكْتُبْنَا مَعَ الشَّاهِدِينَ {83}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:83]

When the Holy Prophet began to preach in public at Makka, the Quraysh violently reacted against him. They insulted him in public, threw dust and dirt at him and over him while in prayers, made loud cries, hooted or sang wild songs to drown his voice while he was preaching; but to their discomfiture they could not prevent him. Finding all their efforts of no avail, they began to use violence against his followers. The Holy Prophet, therefore, advised his followers, who had no protection in Makka, to seek refuge elsewhere. Abyssinia was the place proposed for this purpose, and unanimously agreed upon. Accordingly, in the fifth year of bi-that (about 615 A.D.) one hundred and sixteen refugees, headed by Jafar bin Abu Talib, reached Abyssinia in safety, while the Holy Prophet and his family remained in Makka. Baffled by the Muslim converts escaping to Abyssinia, the Quraysh sent an embassy headed by Amru bin As and Abdullah bin abi Rabi-i with costly presents to the Christian King of Abyssinia, Najashi (Negus). Amru and Abdullah first prostrated themselves to pay Negus their respects, then explained that some of their tribes-men, having adopted a new faith which taught them to think lightly of Isa and Maryam, had forsaken their ancestral religion and escaped to his country. They requested the king, in the name of the Quraysh chiefs, that the fugitives might be delivered up to them. The king sent for the Muslims to hear from them the defence against the heresy of which they were accused. They came in a body headed by Jafar bin Abu Talib. None of the Muslims prostrated himself before the king; but saluted him in their usual manner, ‘peace be on you’. The king was not offended, rather admiring their manners, repeated the charges brought against them by the embassy of Quraysh. Jafar, who was . a man of noble mien, pre-possessing countenance and persuasive eloquence, stood forth and expounded the doctrines of Islam with zeal and enthusiasm. The king who was a Nestorian Christian found the doctrines similar to those of his own religion, opposed to polytheism. He asked Jafar to recite some passages from the revelations to the Holy Prophet. Jafar recited the surah of Maryam, which- touched the heart of the king so much that he could not help shedding tears. (Tabari; Ibn Athir, Ibn Hisham). It is reported that on this occasion these verses (83 to 86) were revealed. Then Negus, pleased to hear Jafar explaining the religion of Allah, dismissed the embassy of Quraysh from his court returning their gifts, and received the Muslims into his favour over and above the protection they already enjoyed. The Muslims lived in Abyssinia till the Holy Prophet established the community of his followers in Madina. In the meantime Negus and his courtiers had embraced Islam. The Holy Prophet wrote him to send back the party of Muslims to Madina. While the Holy Prophet was at Khaybar, Jafar reached Khaybar on the day of its conquest by his brother, Ali ibn abu Talib. The Holy Prophet was much pleased to welcome back his cousin after so long a separation, and joyfully explained that he did not know which of the two incidents Jafar’s arrival or the conquest of Khaybar by Ali-delighted him most.

Alongwith Jafar came some selected scholars from Abyssinia to learn more about Islam. A group of Christians from Syria headed by the great Christian monk, Buhayra, also came to meet the Holy Prophet. When the Holy Prophet recited the surah Ya Sin before them, their eyes brimmed over with tears and all of them became Muslims.

وَمَا لَنَا لَا نُؤْمِنُ بِاللَّهِ وَمَا جَاءَنَا مِنَ الْحَقِّ وَنَطْمَعُ أَنْ يُدْخِلَنَا رَبُّنَا مَعَ الْقَوْمِ الصَّالِحِينَ {84}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:84] (see commentary for verse 83)

فَأَثَابَهُمُ اللَّهُ بِمَا قَالُوا جَنَّاتٍ تَجْرِي مِنْ تَحْتِهَا الْأَنْهَارُ خَالِدِينَ فِيهَا ۚ وَذَٰلِكَ جَزَاءُ الْمُحْسِنِينَ {85}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:85] (see commentary for verse 83)

وَالَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا وَكَذَّبُوا بِآيَاتِنَا أُولَٰئِكَ أَصْحَابُ الْجَحِيمِ {86}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:86] (see commentary for verse 83)

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا لَا تُحَرِّمُوا طَيِّبَاتِ مَا أَحَلَّ اللَّهُ لَكُمْ وَلَا تَعْتَدُوا ۚ إِنَّ اللَّهَ لَا يُحِبُّ الْمُعْتَدِينَ {87}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:87]

Islam does not allow to forbid the good things Allah has made lawful, as the self-denying Christians do.

Aqa Mahdi Puya says:

Some well meaning Muslims, imitating certain self-denying Christians, had vowed not to partake of delicious foods and to abstain from going in to their wives. This the Holy Prophet strongly disapproved, declaring in the assembly of his companions that there is no place for monks and ascetics in Islam because due to asceticism and severity many nations had been destroyed. Verse 93 of this surah, verse 2 of Ta Ha and verse 1 of Tahrim also discourage asceticism. So forbidding anything allowed by Allah and His Prophet is transgression, because either forbidding the lawful or allowing the forbidden (as had been done by many Muslim rulers) amounts to breaking the bounds of the divine law.

وَكُلُوا مِمَّا رَزَقَكُمُ اللَّهُ حَلَالًا طَيِّبًا ۚ وَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ الَّذِي أَنْتُمْ بِهِ مُؤْمِنُونَ {88}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:88] (see commentary for verse 87)

لَا يُؤَاخِذُكُمُ اللَّهُ بِاللَّغْوِ فِي أَيْمَانِكُمْ وَلَٰكِنْ يُؤَاخِذُكُمْ بِمَا عَقَّدْتُمُ الْأَيْمَانَ ۖ فَكَفَّارَتُهُ إِطْعَامُ عَشَرَةِ مَسَاكِينَ مِنْ أَوْسَطِ مَا تُطْعِمُونَ أَهْلِيكُمْ أَوْ كِسْوَتُهُمْ أَوْ تَحْرِيرُ رَقَبَةٍ ۖ فَمَنْ لَمْ يَجِدْ فَصِيَامُ ثَلَاثَةِ أَيَّامٍ ۚ ذَٰلِكَ كَفَّارَةُ أَيْمَانِكُمْ إِذَا حَلَفْتُمْ ۚ وَاحْفَظُوا أَيْمَانَكُمْ ۚ كَذَٰلِكَ يُبَيِّنُ اللَّهُ لَكُمْ آيَاتِهِ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَشْكُرُونَ {89}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:89]

Aqa Mahdi Puya says:

To swear to do what is forbidden or not to do what is obligatory is condemnable. To swear to do or not to do that which is optional in shari-ah is a binding oath. Also to swear to do that which is commendable or not to do that which is not honourable is a binding oath. For rules of expiation in addition to this verse, please also refer to books of fiqh.

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا إِنَّمَا الْخَمْرُ وَالْمَيْسِرُ وَالْأَنْصَابُ وَالْأَزْلَامُ رِجْسٌ مِنْ عَمَلِ الشَّيْطَانِ فَاجْتَنِبُوهُ لَعَلَّكُمْ تُفْلِحُونَ {90}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:90]

Intoxicating agents and gambling have been prohibited through al Baqarah : 219 (see commentary). Many scholars (Abu Hanifa, Hakim Ibn Sad, Suyuti, Shibli, Ibn Hajar) have mentioned in their books about the nabidh (barley malt) held lawful and taken by some of the Holy Prophet ‘s companions.

In Shi-a fiqh all intoxicating agents are held unlawful.

The Holy Prophet said: “Do not visit a sick person if he drinks wine (or any intoxicating drink), if he dies do not attend his funeral prayers, if he is in distress do not give him alms; and it is like throwing your daughter into hell if you marry her to a drunkard.”

Aqa Mahdi Puya says:

According to the Ahl ul Bayt all the prophets of Allah were strict abstainers from intoxicating drinks. Hashim, Abdul Muttalib, Abdullah, Abu Talib, Jafar, Ali and the Holy Prophet, followers of the creed of Ibrahim, never touched any intoxicating drink. Some new converts continued wine-drinking till verse 219 of al Baqarah was revealed. Yet, not satisfied with the manner of its revelation, they did not altogether abandon their old habit. Then verse 43 of al Nisa was revealed. Still drinking parties were held in secret. Once, in such a gathering, where some of his prominent companions were enjoying wholeheartedly, the Holy Prophet came and recited these verses.

“We will keep away from it. We will keep away from it! O Messenger of Allah!” said the companions.

After that total prohibition prevailed. According to Iqdul Farid even after the total prohibition, a renowned companion of the Holy Prophet used to drink thenabidh on the plea that without it he could not digest camel’s meat, because of which some Muslim jurists think that use of nabidh is permissible .

إِنَّمَا يُرِيدُ الشَّيْطَانُ أَنْ يُوقِعَ بَيْنَكُمُ الْعَدَاوَةَ وَالْبَغْضَاءَ فِي الْخَمْرِ وَالْمَيْسِرِ وَيَصُدَّكُمْ عَنْ ذِكْرِ اللَّهِ وَعَنِ الصَّلَاةِ ۖ فَهَلْ أَنْتُمْ مُنْتَهُونَ {91}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:91] (see commentary for verse 90)

وَأَطِيعُوا اللَّهَ وَأَطِيعُوا الرَّسُولَ وَاحْذَرُوا ۚ فَإِنْ تَوَلَّيْتُمْ فَاعْلَمُوا أَنَّمَا عَلَىٰ رَسُولِنَا الْبَلَاغُ الْمُبِينُ {92}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:92]

Refer to the commentary of Ali Imran: 31, 32 and Nisa: 59.

لَيْسَ عَلَى الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ جُنَاحٌ فِيمَا طَعِمُوا إِذَا مَا اتَّقَوْا وَآمَنُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ ثُمَّ اتَّقَوْا وَآمَنُوا ثُمَّ اتَّقَوْا وَأَحْسَنُوا ۗ وَاللَّهُ يُحِبُّ الْمُحْسِنِينَ {93}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:93]

Refer to the commentary of verses 87 and 88 of this surah. This verse refers to the case of those Muslims who were dead before wine and gambling were forbidden, provided they safeguarded themselves from evil, did good and believed.

Believing in Allah, doing good and safeguarding oneself (against evil) with full awareness of Allah’s laws. have been repeatedly stated to guide the believers that they must always strive to attain perfection in piety and should not be content at any stage, thinking that what they are doing is enough.

Aqa Mahdi Puya says:

The fear of the people about the fate of those who used to drink intoxicating drinks and gamble, and died before these evils were prohibited shows how decisive is the command of Allah regarding wine-drinking and gambling. It may also refer to verse 87 of this surah in which case it means lawful things.

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا لَيَبْلُوَنَّكُمُ اللَّهُ بِشَيْءٍ مِنَ الصَّيْدِ تَنَالُهُ أَيْدِيكُمْ وَرِمَاحُكُمْ لِيَعْلَمَ اللَّهُ مَنْ يَخَافُهُ بِالْغَيْبِ ۚ فَمَنِ اعْتَدَىٰ بَعْدَ ذَٰلِكَ فَلَهُ عَذَابٌ أَلِيمٌ {94}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:94]

Please refer to the commentary of al Baqarah: 196 and 197. Killing of even the smallest living being has been prohibited while performing hajj in the sacred house of Allah, the holy Ka-bah (refer to the commentary of al Baqarah; 125).

“Allah shall surely try you” shows the utmost importance of the command, yet Yazid not only desecrated the holy Ka-bah but planned to kill Imam Husayn, the grandson of the Holy Prophet, in it. Having come to know his wicked scheme in advance Imam Husayn, in order to save the sanctity of the holy sanctuary, substituted hajj with umrah and left Makka.

Allah is very strict in enforcing His commands and in punishing those who violate what He has sanctified. So man must hasten to ask His forgiveness, turn to Him in repentance, and make amends by following His guidance.

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا لَا تَقْتُلُوا الصَّيْدَ وَأَنْتُمْ حُرُمٌ ۚ وَمَنْ قَتَلَهُ مِنْكُمْ مُتَعَمِّدًا فَجَزَاءٌ مِثْلُ مَا قَتَلَ مِنَ النَّعَمِ يَحْكُمُ بِهِ ذَوَا عَدْلٍ مِنْكُمْ هَدْيًا بَالِغَ الْكَعْبَةِ أَوْ كَفَّارَةٌ طَعَامُ مَسَاكِينَ أَوْ عَدْلُ ذَٰلِكَ صِيَامًا لِيَذُوقَ وَبَالَ أَمْرِهِ ۗ عَفَا اللَّهُ عَمَّا سَلَفَ ۚ وَمَنْ عَادَ فَيَنْتَقِمُ اللَّهُ مِنْهُ ۗ وَاللَّهُ عَزِيزٌ ذُو انْتِقَامٍ {95}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:95] (see commentary for verse 94)

أُحِلَّ لَكُمْ صَيْدُ الْبَحْرِ وَطَعَامُهُ مَتَاعًا لَكُمْ وَلِلسَّيَّارَةِ ۖ وَحُرِّمَ عَلَيْكُمْ صَيْدُ الْبَرِّ مَا دُمْتُمْ حُرُمًا ۗ وَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ الَّذِي إِلَيْهِ تُحْشَرُونَ {96}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:96] (see commentary for verse 94)

جَعَلَ اللَّهُ الْكَعْبَةَ الْبَيْتَ الْحَرَامَ قِيَامًا لِلنَّاسِ وَالشَّهْرَ الْحَرَامَ وَالْهَدْيَ وَالْقَلَائِدَ ۚ ذَٰلِكَ لِتَعْلَمُوا أَنَّ اللَّهَ يَعْلَمُ مَا فِي السَّمَاوَاتِ وَمَا فِي الْأَرْضِ وَأَنَّ اللَّهَ بِكُلِّ شَيْءٍ عَلِيمٌ {97}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:97] (see commentary for verse 94)

اعْلَمُوا أَنَّ اللَّهَ شَدِيدُ الْعِقَابِ وَأَنَّ اللَّهَ غَفُورٌ رَحِيمٌ {98}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:98] (see commentary for verse 94)

مَا عَلَى الرَّسُولِ إِلَّا الْبَلَاغُ ۗ وَاللَّهُ يَعْلَمُ مَا تُبْدُونَ وَمَا تَكْتُمُونَ {99}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:99]

The Holy Prophet had performed his mission of delivering Allah’s message to the full. Allah knows what his followers disclose by words and deeds and what their secret thoughts and inner feelings are.

قُلْ لَا يَسْتَوِي الْخَبِيثُ وَالطَّيِّبُ وَلَوْ أَعْجَبَكَ كَثْرَةُ الْخَبِيثِ ۚ فَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ يَا أُولِي الْأَلْبَابِ لَعَلَّكُمْ تُفْلِحُونَ{100}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:100]

That which wins His approval and pleasure is not equal to that which is disapproved and cursed by Allah. The accursed and the unclean are in abundance, therefore, do not follow the majority or join the crowd which is going in the direction of Shaytan. In all events preponderance or greater number is not the true criterion. The thoroughly purified Ahl ul Bayt (Ahzab: 33) are the most exalted human beings and should not be compared with those who are impure because darkness and light cannot be equal (Rad: 16).

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا لَا تَسْأَلُوا عَنْ أَشْيَاءَ إِنْ تُبْدَ لَكُمْ تَسُؤْكُمْ وَإِنْ تَسْأَلُوا عَنْهَا حِينَ يُنَزَّلُ الْقُرْآنُ تُبْدَ لَكُمْ عَفَا اللَّهُ عَنْهَا ۗ وَاللَّهُ غَفُورٌ حَلِيمٌ {101}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:101]

Every companion of the Holy Prophet was not endowed with the intelligence to understand Allah, His commands, His creation and that which governs the creation. What was given to Salman was not given to Abu Dharr, and what Abu Dharr knew was out of the reach of other companions. Only the Holy Prophet and Ali were endowed with the full, complete and perfect wisdom (Ya Sin: 12 and Nisa 54). One was the city of knowledge and the other was its gate.

These verses denounce frivolous questioning on the part of the ignorant companions, sometimes merely to abate their idle curiosity, sometimes arising out of a sense of inferiority, sometimes with shrewd cunning in order to obtain scope for individual discretion to be used in future in the name of “the demands of circumstances”.

The Holy Prophet said:

“By Allah, I can tell you who among you will go to paradise, and who among you will burn in hell for ever. The whole universe is before my eyes. Beware! If I tell you about things and events, you will not like it. I have already told you all that which brings you near to Allah, so you must carry out those commands, and I have disclosed all that which separates you from Him and takes you to hell, so do not do what I have forbidden. Do not transgress the boundaries laid down by Allah. If you ask questions about the things He has not disclosed, because of His wisdom, you will find yourselves in deep trouble.”

Aforetime people have asked questions of their prophets but they disbelieved them afterwards.

قَدْ سَأَلَهَا قَوْمٌ مِنْ قَبْلِكُمْ ثُمَّ أَصْبَحُوا بِهَا كَافِرِينَ {102}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:102] (see commentary for verse 101)

مَا جَعَلَ اللَّهُ مِنْ بَحِيرَةٍ وَلَا سَائِبَةٍ وَلَا وَصِيلَةٍ وَلَا حَامٍ ۙ وَلَٰكِنَّ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا يَفْتَرُونَ عَلَى اللَّهِ الْكَذِبَ ۖ وَأَكْثَرُهُمْ لَا يَعْقِلُونَ {103}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:103]

Bahira was the name given to a mother-camel which had ten young ones, her ear was then slit and she was turned loose.

Sa-iba was a camel, turned loose, exempted from common services; her being so turned out was generally in fulfilment of a vow.

Wasila was a term applied to sheep and goats.

Ham was the dedicated stallion camel, turned loose and exempted from common services.

These superstitious rites were not the ordinances of Allah, but the invention of the ignorant pagans.

وَإِذَا قِيلَ لَهُمْ تَعَالَوْا إِلَىٰ مَا أَنْزَلَ اللَّهُ وَإِلَى الرَّسُولِ قَالُوا حَسْبُنَا مَا وَجَدْنَا عَلَيْهِ آبَاءَنَا ۚ أَوَلَوْ كَانَ آبَاؤُهُمْ لَا يَعْلَمُونَ شَيْئًا وَلَا يَهْتَدُونَ {104}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:104]

To most of the polytheistic people, like Arab pagans, religion is not a matter of sound reason and divine revelation, but a mere usage-a set of rites and dogmas handed down from the fathers to the sons.

“He who finds the right path does so for himself; and he who goes astray does so to his own loss; and no one who carries a burden bears another’s load,” says verse 15 of Bani Israil.

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا عَلَيْكُمْ أَنْفُسَكُمْ ۖ لَا يَضُرُّكُمْ مَنْ ضَلَّ إِذَا اهْتَدَيْتُمْ ۚ إِلَى اللَّهِ مَرْجِعُكُمْ جَمِيعًا فَيُنَبِّئُكُمْ بِمَا كُنْتُمْ تَعْمَلُونَ {105}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:105]

The first and foremost duty of every individual is to save his own self, and persuade those who are closely related or associated to follow the right path. The straying of the wicked and the disobedient will not affect those who follow the right guidance. But in the matter of obligatory ordinances amr bil ma-ruf and nahya anil munkar have to be applied as mentioned in the commentary of Ali Imran: 101 to 115.

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا شَهَادَةُ بَيْنِكُمْ إِذَا حَضَرَ أَحَدَكُمُ الْمَوْتُ حِينَ الْوَصِيَّةِ اثْنَانِ ذَوَا عَدْلٍ مِنْكُمْ أَوْ آخَرَانِ مِنْ غَيْرِكُمْ إِنْ أَنْتُمْ ضَرَبْتُمْ فِي الْأَرْضِ فَأَصَابَتْكُمْ مُصِيبَةُ الْمَوْتِ ۚ تَحْبِسُونَهُمَا مِنْ بَعْدِ الصَّلَاةِ فَيُقْسِمَانِ بِاللَّهِ إِنِ ارْتَبْتُمْ لَا نَشْتَرِي بِهِ ثَمَنًا وَلَوْ كَانَ ذَا قُرْبَىٰ ۙ وَلَا نَكْتُمُ شَهَادَةَ اللَّهِ إِنَّا إِذًا لَمِنَ الْآثِمِينَ {106}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:106]

Please refer to the commentary of al Baqarah: 180 to 182.

Witnesses should be men of honour and integrity; they can be non-Muslims if Muslims are not available.

The object of the procedure mentioned in these verses is to eliminate the chances of false evidence. This procedure was followed in an actual case in the Holy Prophet’s life-time. Tamin Dari, a companion of the Holy Prophet died abroad, having made over his goods to two Christian fellow travellers, to be delivered to his designated heirs in Madina. They, however, kept back some valuable articles. When this was found out, oaths were taken from those who knew, and justice was done by the Holy Prophet.

فَإِنْ عُثِرَ عَلَىٰ أَنَّهُمَا اسْتَحَقَّا إِثْمًا فَآخَرَانِ يَقُومَانِ مَقَامَهُمَا مِنَ الَّذِينَ اسْتَحَقَّ عَلَيْهِمُ الْأَوْلَيَانِ فَيُقْسِمَانِ بِاللَّهِ لَشَهَادَتُنَا أَحَقُّ مِنْ شَهَادَتِهِمَا وَمَا اعْتَدَيْنَا إِنَّا إِذًا لَمِنَ الظَّالِمِينَ {107}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:107] (see commentary for verse 106)

ذَٰلِكَ أَدْنَىٰ أَنْ يَأْتُوا بِالشَّهَادَةِ عَلَىٰ وَجْهِهَا أَوْ يَخَافُوا أَنْ تُرَدَّ أَيْمَانٌ بَعْدَ أَيْمَانِهِمْ ۗ وَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ وَاسْمَعُوا ۗ وَاللَّهُ لَا يَهْدِي الْقَوْمَ الْفَاسِقِينَ {108}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:108] (see commentary for verse 106)

يَوْمَ يَجْمَعُ اللَّهُ الرُّسُلَ فَيَقُولُ مَاذَا أُجِبْتُمْ ۖ قَالُوا لَا عِلْمَ لَنَا ۖ إِنَّكَ أَنْتَ عَلَّامُ الْغُيُوبِ {109}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:109]

Please refer to the commentary of al Nisa: 41.

Allah shall summon all His prophets to question them about their ministries and the response they received from their followers. The prophets will says: “We do not know what was in their minds while we were preaching to them, nor what and how they were going to believe and act after our death, so also how they perverted and mutilated our message after us. You (Allah) alone know the secrets unknown.”

Allah knows well those who ran away from the battlefields, leaving the Holy Prophet alone among his enemies or watched the fighting from a safe distance in all the defensive wars he fought against the Jews and the pagans, usurped his successorship, burned his dearest daughter’s house, harassed and persecuted his successors, killed his Ahl ul Bayt including the eleven Imams in his progeny.

Aqa Mahdi Puya says:

La ilma lana does not mean “We do not know anything”, but it means “the knowledge we have is not ours, it is Yours, gifted to us by You, and that too is limited. You are the infinite, omniscient “.

In verse 32 of al Baqarah the angels also say: “Glory be to You! We have no knowledge except what You have taught us; verily, You are the knowing, the wise”.

According to Nisa: 41 and Nahl: 84 and 89 every prophet will be called as a witness over his followers and the Holy Prophet will be a witness over all the prophets. The deeds of the people are witnessed by Allah, the Holy Prophet and “those who believe” (the Ahl ul Bayt).

إِذْ قَالَ اللَّهُ يَا عِيسَى ابْنَ مَرْيَمَ اذْكُرْ نِعْمَتِي عَلَيْكَ وَعَلَىٰ وَالِدَتِكَ إِذْ أَيَّدْتُكَ بِرُوحِ الْقُدُسِ تُكَلِّمُ النَّاسَ فِي الْمَهْدِ وَكَهْلًا ۖ وَإِذْ عَلَّمْتُكَ الْكِتَابَ وَالْحِكْمَةَ وَالتَّوْرَاةَ وَالْإِنْجِيلَ ۖ وَإِذْ تَخْلُقُ مِنَ الطِّينِ كَهَيْئَةِ الطَّيْرِ بِإِذْنِي فَتَنْفُخُ فِيهَا فَتَكُونُ طَيْرًا بِإِذْنِي ۖ وَتُبْرِئُ الْأَكْمَهَ وَالْأَبْرَصَ بِإِذْنِي ۖ وَإِذْ تُخْرِجُ الْمَوْتَىٰ بِإِذْنِي ۖ وَإِذْ كَفَفْتُ بَنِي إِسْرَائِيلَ عَنْكَ إِذْ جِئْتَهُمْ بِالْبَيِّنَاتِ فَقَالَ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا مِنْهُمْ إِنْ هَٰذَا إِلَّا سِحْرٌ مُبِينٌ {110}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:110]

See commentary of al Baqarah: 253, Ali Imran: 46, 48,49,54,55.

The disbelieving Jews say that “Isa learned magic in Egypt, then deceived and led astray Israel” (Hastings’s Encyclopaedia of Religion and Ethics) (111) Refer to the commentary of Ali Imran :52.

Awhaytu has been used here in the sense of Awha of al Nahl: 68-inspiration.

Revelation (wahi) through Jibra-il was sent to prophets only.

وَإِذْ أَوْحَيْتُ إِلَى الْحَوَارِيِّينَ أَنْ آمِنُوا بِي وَبِرَسُولِي قَالُوا آمَنَّا وَاشْهَدْ بِأَنَّنَا مُسْلِمُونَ {111}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:111]

إِذْ قَالَ الْحَوَارِيُّونَ يَا عِيسَى ابْنَ مَرْيَمَ هَلْ يَسْتَطِيعُ رَبُّكَ أَنْ يُنَزِّلَ عَلَيْنَا مَائِدَةً مِنَ السَّمَاءِ ۖ قَالَ اتَّقُوا اللَّهَ إِنْ كُنْتُمْ مُؤْمِنِينَ {112}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:112]

It was only a miracle of “cooked heavenly food” that the believing disciples asked for, to be blessed thereby, to have additional evidence for firm conviction and to be witnesses of the miracle before others, and to always celebrate it as an occasion of joy and satisfaction. In the same sense Ibrahim wanted to see how Allah gives life to the dead (see commentary of al Baqarah: 260).

NAMES OF ISA’S DISCIPLES:

(1) Simon or Peter

(2) Andrew, brother of Simon

(3) James son of Zebedee

(4) John, brother of James

(5) Philip

(6) Bartholomew

(7) Thomas

(8) Matthew

(9) James son of Alphaeus

(10) Lebbaeus or Thaddaenus

(11) Simon the canaanite

(12) Judas Iscariot

(Matthew 10: 2 to 4)

“One of his disciples, Andrew, the brother of Simon, Peter said to him (Isa): “There is a boy here who has five barley leaves and two fishes; but what is that among so many?’ Jesus said: “Make the people sit down.’ There was plenty of grass there, so the men sat down, about five thousand of them. Then Jesus took the leaves, gave thanks, and distributed them to the people as they sat there. He did the same with the fishes, and they had as much as they wanted. When everyone had had enough, he said to his disciples: “Collect the pieces left over, so that nothing may be lost.’ “

(John 6: 8 to 13)

قَالُوا نُرِيدُ أَنْ نَأْكُلَ مِنْهَا وَتَطْمَئِنَّ قُلُوبُنَا وَنَعْلَمَ أَنْ قَدْ صَدَقْتَنَا وَنَكُونَ عَلَيْهَا مِنَ الشَّاهِدِينَ {113}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:113] (see commentary for verse 112)

قَالَ عِيسَى ابْنُ مَرْيَمَ اللَّهُمَّ رَبَّنَا أَنْزِلْ عَلَيْنَا مَائِدَةً مِنَ السَّمَاءِ تَكُونُ لَنَا عِيدًا لِأَوَّلِنَا وَآخِرِنَا وَآيَةً مِنْكَ ۖ وَارْزُقْنَا وَأَنْتَ خَيْرُ الرَّازِقِينَ {114}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:114] (see commentary for verse 112)

قَالَ اللَّهُ إِنِّي مُنَزِّلُهَا عَلَيْكُمْ ۖ فَمَنْ يَكْفُرْ بَعْدُ مِنْكُمْ فَإِنِّي أُعَذِّبُهُ عَذَابًا لَا أُعَذِّبُهُ أَحَدًا مِنَ الْعَالَمِينَ {115}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:115] (see commentary for verse 112)

وَإِذْ قَالَ اللَّهُ يَا عِيسَى ابْنَ مَرْيَمَ أَأَنْتَ قُلْتَ لِلنَّاسِ اتَّخِذُونِي وَأُمِّيَ إِلَٰهَيْنِ مِنْ دُونِ اللَّهِ ۖ قَالَ سُبْحَانَكَ مَا يَكُونُ لِي أَنْ أَقُولَ مَا لَيْسَ لِي بِحَقٍّ ۚ إِنْ كُنْتُ قُلْتُهُ فَقَدْ عَلِمْتَهُ ۚ تَعْلَمُ مَا فِي نَفْسِي وَلَا أَعْلَمُ مَا فِي نَفْسِكَ ۚ إِنَّكَ أَنْتَ عَلَّامُ الْغُيُوبِ {116}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:116]

Isa disclaims here any knowledge of the sort of things that are attributed to him by those who profess to follow him. The worship of Maryam, though repudiated by the protestants, was widely spread among the earlier churches, both in the east and the west. Isa further acknowledges that he was mortal, and that his knowledge was limited like that of a mortal, and that Allah alone is the owner of the heavens and the earth and whatever is in them, and that Allah is the almighty, the knowing and the wise. Please refer to the commentary of al Baqarah: 255; Ali Imran: 2 and 3 to know pure unity of Allah and how the ideas of son of God and trinity were introduced by the writers of the New Testament. The perversion of true faith took place after the departure of Isa. For Isa’s true preaching see commentary of verses 72 to 74 of this surah; and for tawaffaytani (youtook me up) see commentary of Ali Imran: 55.

THE TAWRAT AND THE INJIL

The Tawrat and the Injil are frequently referred to in the Quran. It is well to have clear ideas about these two revealed books.

THE TAWRAT

The Tawrat is mentioned with honour as having been, in its purity, a true revelation from Allah. To translate it by the words “The Old Testament” is obviously wrong. The “Old Testament” is a Christian term, applied to a body of old Jewish records. The Protestants and the Roman Catholics are not agreed precisely as to the number of records to be included in the canon of the Old Testament. They use the term in contradiction to the “New Testament” whose composition shall be discussed in “The Injil”. Nor is it correct to translate Tawrat as the “Pentateuch”, a Greek term meaning the “five books”, known as Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy. A great part of the Jewish law is embodied in these books, which are traditionally ascribed to Musa, but it is certain that they were not written by Musa or in any age contemporary with Musa or within an appreciable distance of time from Musa. They were probably compiled sometime after the return of the Jews from the Babylonian captivity. Some new books such as Haggai, Zechariah and Malachi were admittedly written after the return from captivity. The statement in 2 Esdras (about the first century A.D.) that the law was burnt and Ezra (about 458-457 B.C.) was inspired to rewrite it, is probably true as to the historical fact that what is available now is no earlier than the time of Ezra, and some of it a good deal later.

The Jews divide their scripture into three parts: (1) the law (Torah), (2) the prophets (Nebiim), and (3) the writings (Kethubim). The corresponding Arabic words are (1) Tawrat, (2) Nabiyin, (3) Kutub. In Luke 24: 44 Jesus refers to the law and the prophets and psalms. In the Old Testament (2 Chronicles 34: 30), the reference to the “book of the covenant” must be to the Torah or the original law. The Quran frequently refers to the covenant with reference to the Jews. The modern Christian terms “Old Testament” and “New Testament” are substitutes for the older terms” “Old Covenant and “New Covenant”. The Samaritans, who claim to be the real children of Israel and disavow the Jews as schismatics, only recognise the Pentateuch, their version is slightly different from The Old Testament.

In view of the school of higher criticism, two versions of sacred history existed, different in language, style and spirit, and they were combined together into a narrative in the reign of Hezekiah (B.C. 727-697). This forms the greater part of the Pentateuch as it exists today. In the reign of Josiah about 622 B.C., certain priests and scribes (with Jeremiah) promulgated a new code, pretending that they had found it in the temple (11 Kings 22: 8). This law (Torah) was the basis of Judaism, the new religion then founded in Palestine.

The primitive Torah must have been in old Hebrew, but there is no Hebrew manuscript of the Old Testament which can be dated with certainty earlier than 916 A.D. For historical purposes the Creek version, known as the Septuagint, and the Latin version, known as the Vulgate, were the most important versions. Therefore there is no standard text of the Old Testament in its Hebrew form. The Pentateuch includes the laws and regulations associated with the name of Musa, but probably compiled and edited by Ezra or Esdras (Uzayr) in the 5th century B.C.

In its original form “The Law” (Tawrat) was promulgated by Musa, and is recognised in Islam as having been a revealed book; but it was distorted or lost before Islam was preached. What passed as “The Law” with the Jews in the Holy Prophet’s time was a mass of traditional writing, as explained above.

THE INJIL

Just as the Tawrat is not the Old Testament, or the Pentateuch, so the Injil, mentioned in the Quran, is certainly not the New Testament, and it is not the four gospels as now received by the Christian church, but an original Gospel which was promulgated by Isa, as Tawrat was promulgated by Musa, and the Quran by the Holy Prophet.

The New Testament as now received consists of (a) four gospels with varying contents (Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John); and other miscellaneous matter; viz.; (b) The Act of the Apostles (probably written by Luke and purporting to describe the progress of the Christian church under St. Peter and St. Paul from the supposed crucifixion of Jesus to about 61 A.D.); (c) twenty-one letters or epistles (the majority written by St. Paul to various churches or individuals, but a few written by other disciples, and of a general nature); and (d) the book of revelation or Apocalypse (ascribed to St. John, and containing mystic visions and prophecies, of which it is difficult to understand the meanings).

As Prof. F C. Burkitt remarks in the (Canon of the New Testament) it is an odd miscellany. “The four biographies of Jesus Christ are not all independent of each other, and neither of them was intended by its writer to form one of a quartet. But they are all put side by side, unharmonised, one of them being actually imperfect at the end, and one being only the first volume of a large work.” All this body of unmethodical literature was casual in its nature. No wonder, because the early Christians expected the end of the world very soon. The four canonical gospels were only four out of many, and some others besides the four have survived. Each writer just wrote down some odd sayings of the master that he recollected. Among the miracles described there is only one which is described in all the four gospels, and others were described and believed in, in other gospels which are not mentioned in any of the four canonical gospels. Some of the epistles contain expositions of doctrine, but this has been interpreted differently by different Churches. There must have been hundreds of such epistles, and not all the epistles now received as canonical were always so received or intended to be so received. The Apocalypse also was not the only one in the field. There were others. They were prophecies of “things which must shortly come to pass”; they could not have been meant for long preservation, “for the time is at hand”.

When were these four gospels written? By the end of the second century A.D. they were in existence, but it does not follow that they had been selected by that date to form a canon. They were merely pious productions comparable to Dean Farrar’s Life of Christ. There were other gospels besides. And further, the writers of two of them, Mark and Luke, were not among the twelve disciples “called” by Jesus. About the gospel of St. John there is much controversy as to authorship, date, and even as to whether it was all written by one person. Clement of Rome (about 97 A.D.) and Polycarp (about 112 A.D.) quote sayings of Jesus in a form different from those found in the present canonical gospels. Polycarp (Epistle, vii) inveighs much against men “who prevent the sayings of the Lord to their own lusts,” and he wants to turn “to the word handed down to us from the beginning,” thus referring to a book (or a tradition) much earlier than the four orthodox gospels. An epistle of St Barnabas and an Apoclaypse of St. Peter were recognised by Presbyter Clement of Alexandria (flourished about 180 A.D.). The Apoclaypse of St. John, which is a part of the present canon in the west, forms no part of the Peshitta (Syriac) version of the eastern Christians, which was produced about 411-433 A.D. and which was used by the Nestorian Christians. It is probable that Peshitta was the version (or an Arabic form of it) used by the Christians in Arabia in the time of the Holy Prophet. The final form of the New Testament canon for the west was fixed in the fourth century A.D. (say, about 367 A.D.) by Athanasius and the Nicene creed. The beautiful Codex Sinaiticus which was acquired for the British Museum in 1934, and is one of the earliest complete manuscripts of the Bible, may be dated about the fourth century. It is written in the Greek language. Fragments of unknown gospels have also been discovered, which do not agree with the received canonical gospels.

The Injil (Creek, Evangel = Gospel) spoken of by the Quran is not the New Testament. It is not the four gospels now received as canonical. It is the single Gospel which, Islam teaches, was revealed to Jesus (Isa) and which he taught. Fragments of it survive in the received canonical gospels and in some others, of which traces survive (e.g. the gospel of childhood or the nativity, the gospel of St. Barnabas, etc.). Muslims therefore do not accept the present Bible (New Testament and Old Testament), as “the Injil”, but as it contains some portions of “the Injil” revealed to Isa it is paid due respect, yet they reject the peculiar doctrines taught by orthodox Christianity or Judaism. They claim to be in the true tradition of Ibrahim and therefore all that is of value in the older revelations, it is claimed, is incorporated in the teaching of the last of the prophets.

مَا قُلْتُ لَهُمْ إِلَّا مَا أَمَرْتَنِي بِهِ أَنِ اعْبُدُوا اللَّهَ رَبِّي وَرَبَّكُمْ ۚ وَكُنْتُ عَلَيْهِمْ شَهِيدًا مَا دُمْتُ فِيهِمْ ۖ فَلَمَّا تَوَفَّيْتَنِي كُنْتَ أَنْتَ الرَّقِيبَ عَلَيْهِمْ ۚ وَأَنْتَ عَلَىٰ كُلِّ شَيْءٍ شَهِيدٌ {117}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:117] (see commentary for verse 116)

إِنْ تُعَذِّبْهُمْ فَإِنَّهُمْ عِبَادُكَ ۖ وَإِنْ تَغْفِرْ لَهُمْ فَإِنَّكَ أَنْتَ الْعَزِيزُ الْحَكِيمُ {118}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:118] (see commentary for verse 116)

قَالَ اللَّهُ هَٰذَا يَوْمُ يَنْفَعُ الصَّادِقِينَ صِدْقُهُمْ ۚ لَهُمْ جَنَّاتٌ تَجْرِي مِنْ تَحْتِهَا الْأَنْهَارُ خَالِدِينَ فِيهَا أَبَدًا ۚ رَضِيَ اللَّهُ عَنْهُمْ وَرَضُوا عَنْهُ ۚ ذَٰلِكَ الْفَوْزُ الْعَظِيمُ {119}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:119] (see commentary for verse 116)

لِلَّهِ مُلْكُ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضِ وَمَا فِيهِنَّ ۚ وَهُوَ عَلَىٰ كُلِّ شَيْءٍ قَدِيرٌ {120}

[Pooya/Ali Commentary 5:120] (see commentary for verse 116)
Source:quran.al-islam.org


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