Tafseer of Surah Bayyinah

بِسۡمِ اللّٰہِ الرَّحۡمٰنِ الرَّحِیۡمِ

لَمۡ  یَکُنِ الَّذِیۡنَ کَفَرُوۡا  مِنۡ  اَہۡلِ الۡکِتٰبِ وَ الۡمُشۡرِکِیۡنَ مُنۡفَکِّیۡنَ حَتّٰی تَاۡتِیَہُمُ  الۡبَیِّنَۃُ ۙ﴿۱﴾رَسُوۡلٌ مِّنَ اللّٰہِ یَتۡلُوۡا صُحُفًا مُّطَہَّرَۃً  ۙ﴿۲﴾فِیۡہَا کُتُبٌ قَیِّمَۃٌ ؕ﴿۳﴾وَ مَا تَفَرَّقَ الَّذِیۡنَ اُوۡتُوا الۡکِتٰبَ  اِلَّا مِنۡۢ  بَعۡدِ مَا جَآءَتۡہُمُ  الۡبَیِّنَۃُ ؕ﴿۴﴾وَ مَاۤ  اُمِرُوۡۤا  اِلَّا لِیَعۡبُدُوا اللّٰہَ مُخۡلِصِیۡنَ لَہُ الدِّیۡنَ ۬ۙ حُنَفَآءَ وَ یُقِیۡمُوا الصَّلٰوۃَ  وَ یُؤۡتُوا الزَّکٰوۃَ وَ ذٰلِکَ دِیۡنُ الۡقَیِّمَۃِ ؕ﴿۵﴾اِنَّ  الَّذِیۡنَ کَفَرُوۡا مِنۡ اَہۡلِ الۡکِتٰبِ وَ الۡمُشۡرِکِیۡنَ فِیۡ  نَارِ جَہَنَّمَ خٰلِدِیۡنَ فِیۡہَا ؕ اُولٰٓئِکَ ہُمۡ شَرُّ الۡبَرِیَّۃِ ؕ﴿۶﴾اِنَّ  الَّذِیۡنَ  اٰمَنُوۡا وَ عَمِلُوا الصّٰلِحٰتِ ۙ اُولٰٓئِکَ ہُمۡ خَیۡرُ الۡبَرِیَّۃِ ؕ﴿۷﴾جَزَآؤُہُمۡ عِنۡدَ  رَبِّہِمۡ جَنّٰتُ عَدۡنٍ تَجۡرِیۡ مِنۡ تَحۡتِہَا الۡاَنۡہٰرُ خٰلِدِیۡنَ فِیۡہَاۤ  اَبَدًا ؕ رَضِیَ اللّٰہُ  عَنۡہُمۡ وَ رَضُوۡا عَنۡہُ ؕ ذٰلِکَ لِمَنۡ خَشِیَ رَبَّہٗ ٪﴿۸﴾

The disbelievers from amongst the people of the book and the mushrikeen (the polytheists) were not going to depart from their ways until a great, clear evidence came to them, that is the Rasool of Allah Ta‘ala reciting to them pure (and clear) scriptures. Therein are laws and commands that are straight and clear. And the people of the book did not disagree (and become divided) until after the clear signs had come to them. And they were only commanded to worship Allah Ta’ala sincerely, making their worship exclusive for Him with no deviation, and to establish regular salaah and zakaah; and that is the Deen that is straight and clear.

Those who disbelieved from amongst the people of the book and the polytheists (the mushrikeen), they will be in the fire of hell to dwell therein forever, and they are the worst of creatures. Those who believe and do righteous works, they are the best of creatures. Their reward is by their Rabb, gardens of eternity beneath which rivers flow to dwell therein forever. Allah Ta’ala is well pleased with them and they are well pleased with him. This reward is for the one who fears his Rabb.

The period before the nubuwwah (prophethood) of Nabi (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) was the darkest period of human history. The people of the book, the Jews and Christians, as well as the mushrikeen (the polytheist), were so steeped in darkness that it was virtually impossible for them to come out of it. They continued to remain in darkness until they had seen the clear evidence and sound proofs. This clear evidence and sound proof was none other than the Rasul of Allah Ta’ala reciting to them the pure and clear verses of the Qur’aan Majeed.

When Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) brought to them the Qur’aan Majeed and the true deen, they recognised him to be the Nabi of Allah Ta‘ala as clearly as they recognised their own children. They had no doubt in his prophethood and they knew well that he was the final Nabi whose coming was predicted and foretold in their heavenly scriptures. In fact, they would inform the polytheists that a Nabi is soon to come to them. They would say that when he comes, they will join him and fight against the polytheists. They would even make duaa for barakah and assistance through this Nabi. However, when the Nabi came to them, they rejected him.

وَ مَا تَفَرَّقَ الَّذِیۡنَ اُوۡتُوا الۡکِتٰبَ  اِلَّا مِنۡۢ  بَعۡدِ مَا جَآءَتۡہُمُ  الۡبَیِّنَۃُ ؕ﴿۴﴾وَ مَاۤ  اُمِرُوۡۤا  اِلَّا لِیَعۡبُدُوا اللّٰہَ مُخۡلِصِیۡنَ لَہُ الدِّیۡنَ  ۬ۙ حُنَفَآءَ وَ یُقِیۡمُوا الصَّلٰوۃَ  وَ یُؤۡتُوا الزَّکٰوۃَ وَ ذٰلِکَ دِیۡنُ الۡقَیِّمَۃِ ؕ﴿۵﴾

And the people of the book did not disagree (and become divided) until after the clear signs had come to them. And they were only commanded to worship Allah Ta’ala sincerely, making their worship exclusive for Him with no deviation, and to establish regular salaah and zakaah; and that is the Deen that is straight and clear.

They were commanded to follow the Nabi, but unfortunately, they deviated from the straight path and moved away from the clear and sound verses of the Qur’aan Majeed.

اِنَّ  الَّذِیۡنَ کَفَرُوۡا مِنۡ اَہۡلِ الۡکِتٰبِ وَ الۡمُشۡرِکِیۡنَ فِیۡ  نَارِ جَہَنَّمَ خٰلِدِیۡنَ فِیۡہَا  ؕ اُولٰٓئِکَ ہُمۡ شَرُّ الۡبَرِیَّۃِ ؕ﴿۶﴾

Those who disbelieved from amongst the people of the book and the polytheists (the mushrikeen), they will be in the fire of hell to dwell therein forever, and they are the worst of creatures.

The basis of salvation is bringing Imaan. The one who possesses Imaan will gain entry into paradise and reside in it forever. On the contrary, the one who disbelieves in Allah Ta‘ala will be dispatched to Jahannum to suffer eternal torment and punishment.

This verse clearly explains that the Jews and Christians will remain in Jahannum forever. Many people feel that since the Jews and Christians follow the divine scriptures, the Taurah and Injeel which were revealed by Allah Ta‘ala, they will gain salvation in the Hereafter and be admitted in Jannah. However, in this verse, Allah Ta‘ala makes it abundantly clear that the basis of salvation is bringing Imaan in Allah Ta‘ala and the prophethood and complete Deen of Nabi (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam).

Since the Jews and Christians disbelieved in the prophethood and Deen of Nabi (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam), they are destined for Jahannum and will dwell in it forever. Among the fundamental tenets of faith is for one to bring Imaan in all the Ambiyaa. Rejecting one Nabi amounts to rejecting all the Ambiyaa. Hence, by the Jews and Christians rejecting the prophethood of Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam), they have rejected all the Ambiyaa (as all the Ambiyaa informed their people of the prophethood of Nabi (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam)) and are declared as disbelievers.

Thus in the above verse, Allah Ta’ala declared that they will dwell in Jahannum forever and labelled them as being the worst of all creatures. From all the creatures we know, men, animals, reptiles, Jinnaat, etc, these people are the very worst – even worse than the worst of creatures that we know. Although they are people of the book, since they have deviated and rejected the truth, this is their despised position in the sight of Allah Ta’ala.

 إِنَّ ٱلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُوا۟ وَعَمِلُوا۟ ٱلصَّٰلِحَٰتِ أُو۟لَٰٓئِكَ هُمْ خَيْرُ ٱلْبَرِيَّةِ ‎﴿٧﴾‏ جَزَآؤُهُمْ عِندَ رَبِّهِمْ جَنَّٰتُ عَدْنٍ تَجْرِى مِن تَحْتِهَا ٱلْأَنْهَٰرُ خَٰلِدِينَ فِيهَآ أَبَدًا ۖ رَّضِىَ ٱللَّهُ عَنْهُمْ وَرَضُوا۟ عَنْهُ ۚ ذَٰلِكَ لِمَنْ خَشِىَ رَبَّهُۥ ‎﴿٨﴾‏

Those who believe and do righteous works, they are the best of creatures. Their reward is by their Rabb, gardens of eternity beneath which rivers flow to dwell therein forever. Allah Ta’ala is well pleased with them and they are well pleased with him. This reward is for the one who fears his Rabb.

On the day of Qiyaamah, Allah Ta’ala will call out to the people of Jannah and ask, “Are you pleased with Me?” They will say, “O Allah! Why should we not be pleased with You when You have blessed us with such blessings that You have not blessed to anybody else?” Allah Ta’ala will then say, “Now I have made My pleasure perpetual for you. I will never be displeased with you at any time.”

This will be the greatest favour of Jannah – Allah Ta’ala’s perpetual pleasure for the people of Jannah – that at no time thereafter will Allah Ta’ala be displeased with them. The happiness and joy which they will experience over the perpetual pleasure of Allah Ta‘ala will be far greater than the pleasure they will experience over all the bounties of Jannah.

This ultimate reward, of entry into Jannah and acquiring the perpetual pleasure of Allah Ta‘ala, is not difficult for a believer to acquire. All that is needed is that one fears Allah Ta’ala. If a believer, at all times, is concerned about standing before Allah Ta‘ala and of giving an account on the Day of judgement, then he will definitely reform his life and refrain from sins. However, the cause for one deviating from the straight path is that one loses sight of the Hereafter and standing before Allah Ta‘ala for accountability. When one’s heart is overcome by the concern that he will be accountable for every word he utters and every action he carries out, and he will be questioned regarding the rights which he owes to Allah Ta‘ala and the creation, then such a person will prepare for the life of the Hereafter and reform his worldly life.

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