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Holy Quran Section > English Translation and Commentary of the Holy Quran by Maulana Muhammad Ali (Table of Contents) > Chapter 4 (Al-Nisa’ - The Women) > Section 9 (Verses 60 to 70)


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Section/Ruku Ruku 9 [Verses 60 to 70]: The Prophet must be obeyed:
Chapter Chapter 4: (Al-Nisa’: The Women)
(Revealed at Madinah: 24 sections; 176 verses)

1. Translation:

60 Hast thou not seen those who assert that they believe in that which has been revealed to thee and that which was revealed before thee? They desire to seek the judgment of the devil,
a though they have been commanded to deny him. And the devil desires to lead them far astray.

61 And when it is said to them, Come to that which Allah has revealed and to the Messenger, thou seest the hypocrites turning away from thee with aversion.

62 But how is it that when a misfortune befalls them on account of that which their hands have sent before, they come to thee swearing by Allah: We desired naught but good and concord?

63 These are they, the secrets of whose hearts Allah knows; so turn aside from them and admonish them and speak to them effective words concerning themselves.a

64 And We sent no messenger but that he should be obeyed by Allah’s command. And had they, when they wronged themselves, come to thee and asked forgiveness of Allah, and the Messenger had (also) asked forgiveness for them, they would have found Allah Oft-returning (to mercy), merciful.

65 But no, by thy Lord! they believe not until they make thee a judge of what is in dispute between them, then find not any straitness in their hearts as to that which thou decidest and submit with full submission.

66 And if We had enjoined them, Lay down your livesa or go forth from your homes, they would not have done it except a few of them. And if they had done what they are exhorted to do, it would certainly have been better for them and more strengthening:

67 And then We would certainly have given them from Ourselves a great reward,

68 And We would certainly have guided them in the right path.

69 And whoever obeys Allah and the Messenger, they are with those upon whom Allah has bestowed favours from among the prophets and the truthful and the faithful and the righteous, and a goodly company are they!a

70 Such is the grace from Allah, and Allah is sufficient as Knower.

2. Commentary:

60a. For taghut see 2:256b. The people spoken of here are the hypocrites as made clear in the verse that follows. The reference here is said to be to Ka‘b, son of Ashraf, a Jew; others think it is to Abu Bardah, a diviner; others consider the taghut here to be a particular idol or idols generally, to whom disputes were taken to be decided by divination (Rz). The hypocrites inclined to idols, or the diviners who, being their leaders in devil-worship, are called devils. [Back to verse 60]

63a. A person is said to be baligh (from balagha, meaning he attained the utmost point to which he directed his course) who is chaste in speech or effective or penetrating in tongue. Applied to a saying, it also signifies an effectual speech or a speech producing an effect (LL). [Back to verse 63]

66a. The companions of the Prophet had to lay down their lives in defence of their faith, and had to leave their homes for the sake of their religion. But the hypocrites at Madinah were too weak of heart to undergo such hardships. They were only required to contribute to the struggle which was being carried on for national defence and to obey the Prophet’s orders which was a far easier task, but they did not do even this. [Back to verse 66]

69a. Those upon whom Allah has bestowed favours are spoken of as belonging to four classes: (1) The prophets. (2) The truthful — the original word siddiq literally means one who is always truthful and in the religious language one who is true in his saying and his belief, and who confirms his truth by his deed or acting (LL). (3) The faithful — the original word s ha h s d means one who bears witness to the truth of the religion of Allah, both by his words and deeds, and one slain in defence of his religion is included because he too gives evidence of the truth of religion by laying down his life. (4) The righteous or those who stick to the right course in all their deeds, come what may.

Those who obey Allah and the Messenger are here told that they are with the perfect ones who belong to the four classes, the prophets, the truthful, the faithful and the righteous. The significance is clear. They have not attained to the perfection of these four classes of the perfect ones, yet they are with them, i.e., they will be in their company in the life to come. The Prophet’s sayings make it clear. He is reported to have said; “The truthful and honest merchant is with the prophets, the truthful and the faithful” (Tr. 12:4). It does not mean that an honest merchant becomes a prophet, but that he is in the company of the prophets. According to another hadith, the Prophet was asked about a person who loves a people but is not one of them, and he replied that a man is with those whom he loves (B. 78:96). And Anas is reported to have said: “I love the Messenger of Allah and I love Abu Bakr and ‘Umar and I hope that Allah will raise me with them, though I have not done the deeds which they did” (B. 62:6). Thus this verse promises to those who have not attained to perfection the company of those who have attained to perfection when the former have done their best to obey God and His Messenger.

At any rate, none can become a prophet by obeying the Prophet. If this were true, not only would all the truthful and the faithful and the righteous be prophets, because they perfectly obeyed Allah and His Messenger, but even all those who tried to follow them would have been raised to the dignity of prophethood which is absurd on the face of it. And to talk of some people becoming prophets after the door to prophethood has been closed is sheer ignorance of the basic principles laid down by the Holy Book. [Back to verse 69]

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Holy Quran Section > English Translation and Commentary of the Holy Quran by Maulana Muhammad Ali (Table of Contents) > Chapter 4 (Al-Nisa’ - The Women) > Section 9 (Verses 60 to 70)


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