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“O You Who Believe…” #8

The eighth time in which yaa ayyuha alladheena aamanuuO you who believe comes in the Qur’aan is in Surat Al Baqarah, verse 264.

 

O you who believe, do not invalidate your charities with reminders or injury as does one who spends his wealth [only] to be seen by the people and does not believe in Allah and the Last Day. His example is like that of a [large] smooth stone upon which is dust and is hit by a downpour that leaves it bare. They are unable [to keep] anything of what they have earned. And Allah does not guide the disbelieving people.”

[Surat Al Baqarah, verse 264]

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To Remind about Given Charity is Forbidden

Allah praises those who spend from their money in His cause, and then refrain from reminding those who received the charity of that fact, whether these hints take the form of words or actions.

Allah’s statement,

﴿وَلاَ أَذًى﴾

(or with injury), indicates that they do not cause harm to those whom they gave the charity to, for this harm will only annul the charity. Allah next promised them the best rewards for this good deed,

﴿لَهُمْ أَجْرُهُمْ عِندَ رَبِّهِمْ﴾

(their reward is with their Lord), indicating that Allah Himself will reward them for these righteous actions. Further,

 

﴿وَلاَ خَوْفٌ عَلَيْهِمْ﴾

(On them shall be no fear) regarding the horrors of the Day of Resurrection,

﴿وَلاَ هُمْ يَحْزَنُونَ﴾

(nor shall they grieve) regarding the offspring that they leave behind and the adornment and delights of this world. They will not feel sorry for this, because they will acquire what is far better for them.

Allah then said,

﴿قَوْلٌ مَّعْرُوفٌ﴾

(Kind words) meaning, compassionate words and a supplication for Muslims,

 

﴿وَمَغْفِرَةٌ﴾

(and forgiving) meaning, forgiving an injustice that took the form of actions or words,

﴿خَيْرٌ مِّن صَدَقَةٍ يَتْبَعُهَآ أَذًى﴾

(are better than Sadaqah (charity) followed by injury.)

﴿وَاللَّهُ غَنِىٌّ﴾

(And Allah is Rich) not needing His creation,

 

﴿حَلِيمٌ﴾

(Most Forbearing) forgives, releases and pardons them.

 

There are several Hadiths that prohibit reminding people of acts of charity. For instance, Muslim recorded that Abu Dharr said that the Messenger of Allah said,

«ثَلَاثَةٌ لَا يُكَلِّمُهُمُ اللهُ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ، وَلَا يَنْظُرُ إِلَيْهِم، وَلَا يُزَكِّيهِمْ، وَلَهُمْ عَذَابٌ أَلِيمٌ: الْمَنَّانُ بِمَا أَعْطَى، وَالْمُسْبِلُ إِزَارَهُ، وَالْمُنَفِّقُ سِلْعَتَهُ بِالْحَلِفِ الْكَاذِب»

(Three persons whom Allah shall neither speak to on the Day of Resurrection nor look at nor purify, and they shall receive a painful torment: he who reminds (the people) of what he gives away, he who lengthens his clothes below the ankles and he who swears an oath while lying, to sell his merchandise.)

This is why Allah said,

 

﴿يأَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ لاَ تُبْطِلُواْ صَدَقَـتِكُم بِالْمَنِّ وَالاٌّذَى﴾

(O you who believe! Do not render in vain your Sadaqah (charity) by reminders of your generosity or by injury) stating that the charity will be rendered in vain if it is followed by harm or reminders. In this case, the reward of giving away charity is not sufficient enough to nullify the harm and reminders. Allah then said,

﴿كَالَّذِى يُنفِقُ مَالَهُ رِئَآءَ النَّاسِ﴾

(like him who spends his wealth to be seen of men) meaning, “Do not nullify your acts of charity by following them with reminders and harm, just like the charity of those who give it to show off to people.” The boasting person pretends to give away charity for Allah’s sake, but in reality seeks to gain people’s praise and the reputation of being kind or generous, or other material gains of this life. All the while, he does not think about Allah or gaining His pleasure and generous rewards, and this is why Allah said,

﴿وَلاَ يُؤْمِنُ بِاللَّهِ وَالْيَوْمِ الاٌّخِرِ﴾

(and he does not believe in Allah, nor in the Last Day.)

Allah next set the example of whoever gives charity to show off. Ad-Dahhak commented that the example fits one who follows his acts of charity with reminders or harm. Allah said,

﴿فَمَثَلُهُ كَمَثَلِ صَفْوَانٍ﴾

(His likeness is the likeness of Safwan) where Safwan, from is Safwanah, meaning `the smooth rocks,’

 

﴿عَلَيْهِ تُرَابٌ فَأَصَابَهُ وَابِلٌ﴾

(on which is little dust; on it falls a Wabil) meaning, heavy rain,

 

﴿فَتَرَكَهُ صَلْدًا﴾

(which leaves it bare.) This Ayah means that heavy rain left the Safwan completely barren of dust. Such is the case with Allah’s action regarding the work of those who show off, as their deeds are bound to vanish and disappear, even though people think that these deeds are as plentiful as specks of dust. So Allah said,

﴿لاَّ يَقْدِرُونَ عَلَى شَىْءٍ مِّمَّا كَسَبُواْ وَاللَّهُ لاَ يَهْدِي الْقَوْمَ الْكَـفِرِينَ﴾

(They are not able to do anything with what they have earned. And Allah does not guide the disbelieving people.)

Taken from Tafseer Ibn Katheer

“O You Who Believe…” #7

The seventh time in which yaa ayyuha alladheena aamanuuO you who believe comes in the Qur’aan is in Surat Al Baqarah, verse 254.

 

 

O you who believe, spend from that which We have provided for you before there comes a Day in which there is no exchange and no friendship and no intercession. And the disbelievers – they are the wrongdoers.”

[Surat Al Baqarah, verse 254]

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Allah commands His servants to spend for His sake, in the path of righteousness, from what He has granted them, so that they acquire and keep the reward of this righteous deed with their Lord and King. Let them rush to perform this deed in this life,

﴿مِّن قَبْلِ أَن يَأْتِىَ يَوْمٌ﴾

(before a Day comes) meaning, the Day of Resurrection,

﴿لاَّ بَيْعٌ فِيهِ وَلاَ خُلَّةٌ وَلاَ شَفَـعَةٌ﴾

(when there will be no bargaining, nor friendship, nor intercession.)

 

This Ayah indicates that on that Day, no one will be able to bargain on behalf of himself or ransom himself with any amount, even if it was the earth’s fill of gold; nor will his friendship or relation to anyone benefit him. Similarly, Allah said,

﴿فَإِذَا نُفِخَ فِى الصُّورِ فَلاَ أَنسَـبَ بَيْنَهُمْ يَوْمَئِذٍ وَلاَ يَتَسَآءَلُونَ ﴾

(Then, when the Trumpet is blown, there will be no kinship among them that Day, nor will they ask of one another) ﴿23:101﴾.

﴿وَلاَ شَفَـعَةٌ﴾

(Nor intercession) meaning, they will not benefit by the intercession of anyone.

 

Allah’s statement,

﴿وَالْكَـفِرُونَ هُمُ الظَّـلِمُونَ﴾

(and it is the disbelievers who are the wrongdoers) indicates that no injustice is worse than meeting Allah on that Day while a disbeliever. Ibn Abi Hatim recorded that `Ata’ bin Dinar said, “All thanks are due to Allah Who said,

﴿وَالْكَـفِرُونَ هُمُ الظَّـلِمُونَ﴾

(and it is the disbelievers who are the wrongdoers) but did not say, `And it is the wrongdoers who are the disbelievers.”’

 

 

Taken from Tafseer Ibn Katheer

“O You Who Believe…” #6

The sixth time in which yaa ayyuha alladheena aamanuuO you who believe comes in the Qur’aan is in Surat Al Baqarah, verse 208.

 

 

O you who believe, enter into Islaam completely [and perfectly] and do not follow the footsteps of Shaytaan. (Satan) Indeed, he is to you a clear enemy.”

[Surat Al Baqarah, verse 208]

The next verse (verse 209) continues from the above verse, saying:

But if you deviate after clear proofs have come to you, then know that Allaah is Exalted in Might and Wise.”

[Surat Al Baqarah, verse 209]

Entering Islam in its Entirety is Obligated

Allah commands His servants who believe in Him and have faith in His Messenger to implement all of Islam’s legislation and law, to adhere to all of its commandments, as much as they can, and to refrain from all of its prohibitions. `Al-`Awfi said that Ibn `Abbas said, and also Mujahid, Tawus, Ad-Dahhak, `Ikrimah, Qatadah, As-Suddi and Ibn Zayd said that Allah’s statement:

﴿ادْخُلُواْ فِي السِّلْمِ﴾

(Enter Silm) means Islam.

 

Allah’s statement:

﴿كَآفَّةً﴾

(…perfectly) means, in its entirety. This is the Tafsir of Ibn `Abbas, Mujahid, Abu Al-`Aliyah, `Ikrimah, Ar-Rabi` bin Anas, As-Suddi, Muqatil bin Hayyan, Qatadah and Ad-Dahhak. Mujahid said that the Ayah means, `Perform all the good works and the various pious deeds, this is especially addressed to those from among the People of the Scripture who embraced the faith.’

Ibn Abu Hatim reported that Ibn `Abbas said that:

﴿يَـأَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ ادْخُلُواْ فِي السِّلْمِ كَآفَّةً﴾

(O you who believe! Enter Silm perfectly) refers to the believers among the People of the Scripture. This is because they believed in Allah, some of them still followed some parts of the Tawrah and the previous revelations. So Allah said:

﴿ادْخُلُواْ فِي السِّلْمِ كَآفَّةً﴾

(Enter Islam perfectly.) Allah thus commanded them to embrace the legislation of the religion of Muhammad in its entirety and to avoid abandoning any part of it. They should no longer adhere to the Tawrah.

 

Allah then said:

﴿وَلاَ تَتَّبِعُواْ خُطُوَتِ الشَّيْطَـنِ﴾

(…and follow not the footsteps of Shaytan) meaning, perform the acts of worship and avoid what Satan commands you to do. This is because:

﴿إِنَّمَا يَأْمُرُكُم بِالسُّوءِ وَالْفَحْشَآءِ وَأَن تَقُولُواْ عَلَى اللَّهِ مَا لاَ تَعْلَمُونَ ﴾

(He (Shaytan) commands you only what is evil and Fahsha’ (sinful), and that you should say about Allah what you know not.) (2:169) and:

﴿إِنَّمَا يَدْعُو حِزْبَهُ لِيَكُونُواْ مِنْ أَصْحَـبِ السَّعِيرِ﴾

(He only invites his Hizb (followers) that they may become the dwellers of the blazing Fire.) (35:6) Hence, Allah said:

﴿إِنَّهُ لَكُمْ عَدُوٌّ مُّبِينٌ﴾

(Verily, he is to you an open enemy.)

 

Allah said:

﴿فَإِن زَلَلْتُمْ مِّن بَعْدِ مَا جَآءَتْكُمُ الْبَيِّنَـتُ﴾

(Then if you slide back after the clear signs have come to you) meaning, if you deviate from the Truth after clear proofs have been established against you,

﴿فَاعْلَمُواْ أَنَّ اللَّهَ عَزِيزٌ﴾

(…then know that Allah is All-Mighty) in His punishment, and no one can escape His vengeance or defeat Him.

﴿حَكِيمٌ﴾

(All-Wise) in His decisions, actions and rulings. Hence Abu Al-`Aliyah, Qatadah and Ar-Rabi` bin Anas said, “He is Mighty in His vengeance, Wise in His decision.”

Taken from Tafseer Ibn Katheer

“O You Who Believe…” #5

The fifth time in which yaa ayyuha alladheena aamanuuO you who believe comes in the Qur’aan is in Surat Al Baqarah, verse 183.

 

O you who believe, decreed upon you is fasting as it was decreed upon those before you that you may become righteous –”

[Surat Al Baqarah, verse 183]

This and the following two ayaat discuss the topic of Ramadaan and fasting in it.

Below is part of the tafseer [Tafseer Ibn Katheer] regarding these verses discussing Ramadaan and fasting in it.

The full tafseer of these three verses can be found in more detail in the following links:

Tafseer Surat Al Baqarah: 183 (The Order to Fast)

Tafseer Surat Al Baqarah: 184 (The Various Stages of Fasting)

The Fidyah (Expiation) for Breaking the Fast is For The Old and Ailing

The Virtue of Ramadaan and the Revelation of the Qur’aan Revealed in it

The Obligation of Fasting Ramadaan

Fasting (rules)

Ease not Hardship

 

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The Order to Fast

In an address to the believers of this Ummah, Allah ordered them to fast, that is, to abstain from food, drink and sexual activity with the intention of doing so sincerely for Allah the Exalted alone. This is because fasting purifies the souls and cleanses them from the evil that might mix with them and their ill behavior. Allah mentioned that He has ordained fasting for Muslims just as He ordained it for those before them, they being an example for them in that, so they should vigorously perform this obligation more obediently than the previous nations. Similarly, Allah said:

﴿لِكُلٍّ جَعَلْنَا مِنكُمْ شِرْعَةً وَمِنْهَـجاً وَلَوْ شَآءَ اللَّهُ لَجَعَلَكُمْ أُمَّةً وَحِدَةً وَلَـكِن لِّيَبْلُوَكُمْ فِى مَآ ءَاتَـكُم فَاسْتَبِقُوا الخَيْرَاتِ﴾

(To each among you, We have prescribed a law and a clear way. If Allah had willed, He would have made you one nation, but that (He) may test you in what He has given you; so compete in good deeds.) (5:48)

 

Allah said in this Ayah:

﴿يأَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ كُتِبَ عَلَيْكُمُ الصِّيَامُ كَمَا كُتِبَ عَلَى الَّذِينَ مِن قَبْلِكُمْ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَتَّقُونَ ﴾

 

(O you who believe! Fasting is prescribed for you as it was prescribed for those before you, that you may have Taqwa).) since the fast cleanses the body and narrows the paths of Shaytan. In the Sahihayn the following Hadith was recorded:

«يَا مَعْشَرَ الشَّبَابِ مَنِ اسْتَطَاعَ مِنْكُمُ الْبَاءَةَ فَلْيتَـزَوَّجْ وَمَنْ لَمْ يَسْتَطِع فَعَلَيْهِ بِالصَّوْمِ فَإِنَّهُ لَهُ وِجَاء»

.(O young people! Whoever amongst you can afford marriage, let him marry. Whoever cannot afford it, let him fast, for it will be a shield for him.)

Allah then states that the fast occurs during a fixed number of days, so that it does not become hard on the hearts, thereby weakening their resolve and endurance.)

 

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The Various Stages of Fasting

Al-Bukhari and Muslim recorded that `A’ishah said, “(The day of) `Ashura’ was a day of fasting. When the obligation to fast Ramadan was revealed, those who wished fasted, and those who wished did not.” Al-Bukhari recorded the same from Ibn `Umar and Ibn Mas`ud.

Allah said:

﴿وَعَلَى الَّذِينَ يُطِيقُونَهُ فِدْيَةٌ طَعَامُ مِسْكِينٍ﴾

(…those who can fast with difficulty, (e.g., an old man), they have (a choice either to fast or) to feed a Miskin (poor person) (for every day).)

 

Mu`adh commented, “In the beginning, those who wished, fasted and those who wished, did not fast and fed a poor person for each day.” Al- Bukhari recorded Salamah bin Al-Akwa` saying that when the Ayah:

﴿وَعَلَى الَّذِينَ يُطِيقُونَهُ فِدْيَةٌ طَعَامُ مِسْكِينٍ﴾

(…those who can fast with difficulty, (e.g., an old man), they have (a choice either to fast or) to feed a Miskin (poor person) (for every day).) was revealed, those who did not wish to fast, used to pay the Fidyah (feeding a poor person for each day they did not fast) until the following Ayah (2:185) was revealed abrogating the previous Ayah. It was also reported from `Ubaydullah from Nafi` that Ibn `Umar said; “It was abrogated.” As-Suddi reported that Murrah narrated that `Abdullah said about this Ayah:

 

﴿وَعَلَى الَّذِينَ يُطِيقُونَهُ فِدْيَةٌ طَعَامُ مِسْكِينٍ﴾

(those who can fast with difficulty, (e.g., an old man), they have (a choice either to fast or) to feed a Miskin (poor person) (for every day).) “It means `those who find it difficult (to fast).’ Formerly, those who wished, fasted and those who wished, did not but fed a poor person instead.” Allah then said:

 

﴿فَمَن تَطَوَّعَ خَيْرًا﴾

(But whoever does good of his own accord) meaning whoever fed an extra poor person,

﴿فَهُوَ خَيْرٌ لَّهُ وَأَن تَصُومُواْ خَيْرٌ لَّكُمْ﴾

(it is better for him. And that you fast is better for you) Later the Ayah:

 

﴿فَمَن شَهِدَ مِنكُمُ الشَّهْرَ فَلْيَصُمْهُ﴾

(So whoever of you sights (the crescent on the first night of) the month (of Ramadan, i.e., is present at his home), he must observe Sawm (fasting) that month) (2:185) was revealed and this abrogated the previous Ayah (2:184).

 

 

“O You Who Believe…” #4

The fourth time in which yaa ayyuha alladheena aamanuuO you who believe comes in the Qur’aan is in Surat Al Baqarah, verse 178.

O you who believe, prescribed for you is legal retribution for those murdered – the free for the free, the slave for the slave, and the female for the female. But whoever overlooks from his brother anything, then there should be a suitable follow-up and payment to him with good conduct. This is an alleviation from your Lord and a mercy. But whoever transgresses after that will have a painful punishment.”

[Surat Al Baqarah, verse 178]

The following ayah goes further:

“And there is (a saving of) life for you in Al-Qisaas (the Law of equality in punishment), O men of understanding, that you may acquire Taqwaa.”

[Surat Al Baqarah, verse 179]

Below is part of the tafseer [Tafseer Ibn Katheer] regardin verse 178.

The tafseer of these two verses can be found in more detail in the following links:

Tafseer Surat Al Baqarah: 178 & 179

Continued here – Tafseer Surat Al Baqarah: 178 & 179

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The Command and the Wisdom Behind the Law of Equality

 

Allah states: O believers! The Law of equality has been ordained on you (for cases of murder), the free for the free, the slave for the slave and the female for the female. Therefore, do not transgress the set limits, as others before you transgressed them, and thus changed what Allah has ordained for them.

The reason behind this statement is that (the Jewish tribe of) Banu An-Nadir invaded Qurayzah (another Jewish tribe) during the time of Jahiliyyah (before Islam) and defeated them. Hence, (they made it a law that) when a person from Nadir kills a person from Quraizah, he is not killed in retaliation, but only pays a hundred Wasq of dates. However, when a person from Quraizah kills a Nadir man, he would be killed for him. If Nadir wanted to forfeit the execution of the murderer and instead require him to pay a ransom, the Quraizah man pays two hundred Wasq of dates double the amount Nadir pays in Diyah (blood money).

So Allah commanded that justice be observed regarding the penal code, and that the path of the misguided and mischievous persons be avoided, who in disbelief and transgression, defy and alter what Allah has commanded them.

Allah said:

﴿كُتِبَ عَلَيْكُمُ الْقِصَاصُ فِي الْقَتْلَى الْحُرُّ بِالْحُرِّ وَالْعَبْدُ بِالْعَبْدِ وَالاٍّنثَى بِالاٍّنْثَى﴾

(Al-Qisas (the Law of equality in punishment) is prescribed for you in case of murder: the free for the free, the slave for the slave, and the female for the female.)

 

Allah’s statement:

﴿الْحُرُّ بِالْحُرِّ وَالْعَبْدُ بِالْعَبْدِ وَالاٍّنثَى بِالاٍّنْثَى﴾

(the free for the free, the slave for the slave, and the female for the female.) was abrogated by the statement life for life (5:45).

 

 

“O You Who Believe…” #3

The third time in which yaa ayyuha alladheena aamanuuO you who believe comes in the Qur’aan is in Surat Al Baqarah, verse 172.

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O you who believe, eat from the good things which We have provided for you and be grateful to Allaah if it is [indeed] Him that you worship.”

[Surat Al Baqarah, verse 172]

The following ayah (verse 173) continues to explain what has been prohibitied for the believers to eat.

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“He has only forbidden to you dead animals, blood, the flesh of swine, and that which has been dedicated to other than Allaah. But whoever is forced [by necessity], neither desiring [it] nor transgressing [its limit], there is no sin upon him. Indeed, Allaah is Forgiving and Merciful.”

Below is part of the tafseer [Tafseer Ibn Katheer] regarding these two verses.

The tafseer of these two verses can be found in more detail in the following links:

Tafseer Surat Al Baqarah: 172

Tafseer Surat Al Baqarah: 173

The Command to eat Pure Things and the Explanation of the Prohibited Things

  • Allah commands His believing servants to eat from the pure things that He has created for them and to thank Him for it, if they are truly His servants.
  • Eating from pure sources is a cause for the acceptance of supplications and acts of worship, just as eating from impure sources prevents the acceptance of supplications and acts of worship, as mentioned in a Hadith recorded by Imam Ahmad, that Abu Hurayrah said that Allah’s Messenger said:

«أَيُّهَا النَّاسُ إِنَّ اللهَ طَيِّبٌ، لَا يَقْبَلُ إِلَّا طَيِّـبًا، وَإنَّ اللهَ أَمَرَ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ بِمَا أَمَرَ بِهِ الْمُرْسَلِينَ، فَقَالَ:

﴿يأَيُّهَا الرُّسُلُ كُلُواْ مِنَ الطَّيِّبَـتِ وَاعْمَلُواْ صَـلِحاً إِنِّى بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ عَلِيمٌ ﴾

، وَقَالَ:

﴿يـأَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ كُلُواْ مِن طَيِّبَاتِ مَا رَزَقْنَـكُمْ﴾

ثُمَّ ذَكَرَ الرَّجُلَ يُطِيلُ السَّفَرَ أَشْعَثَ أَغْبَرَ يَمُدُّ يَدَيْهِ إِلَى السَّمَاءِ: يَا رَبِّ يَا رَبِّ، وَمَطْعَمُهُ حَرَامٌ، وَمَشْرَبُهُ حَرَامٌ، وَملْبَسُهُ حَرَامٌ، وَغُذِّيَ بالْحَرَامِ فَأَنَّى يُسْتَجَابُ لِذلِكَ؟»

(O people! Allah is Tayyib (Pure and Good) and only accepts that which is Tayyib. Allah has indeed commanded the believers with what He has commanded the Messengers, for He said: (O (you) Messengers! Eat of the Tayyibat and do righteous deeds. Verily, I am well-acquainted with what you do) (23:51), and: (O you who believe! Eat of the lawful things that We have provided you with) He then mentioned a man, (who is engaged in a long journey, whose hair is untidy and who is covered in dust, he raises his hands to the sky, and says, `O Lord! O Lord!’ Yet, his food is from the unlawful, his drink is from the unlawful, his clothes are from the unlawful, and he was nourished by the unlawful, so how can it (his supplication) be accepted”) It was also recorded by Muslim and At-Tirmidhi

  • After Allah mentioned how He has blessed His creatures by providing them with provisions, and after commanding them to eat from the pure things that He has provided them, He then stated that He has not prohibited anything for them, except dead animals.
  • Dead animals are those that die before being slaughtered; whether they die by strangling, a violent blow, a headlong fall, the goring of horns or by being partly eaten by a wild animal. Dead animals of the sea are excluded from this ruling, as is explained later, Allah willing, as Allah said:

﴿أُحِلَّ لَكُمْ صَيْدُ الْبَحْرِ وَطَعَامُهُ﴾

(Lawful to you is (the pursuit of) watergame and its use for food) (5:96), and because of the Hadith about the whale recorded in the Sahih. The Musnad, Al-Muwatta’ and the Sunan recorded the Prophet saying about the sea:

«هُوَ الطَّهُورُ مَاؤُهُ والْحِلُّ مَيْتَتُه»

(Its water is pure and its dead are permissible.)

Ash-Shafi`i, Ahmad, Ibn Majah, and Ad-Daraqutni reported that Ibn `Umar said that the Prophet said:

«أُحِلَّ لَنَا مَيْتتَانِ وَدَمَانِ،السَّمَكُ وَالْجَرَادُ وَالْكَبِدُ وَالطِّحَال»

(We have been allowed two dead things and two bloody things: fish and locusts; and liver and spleen).

“O You Who Believe…” #2

The second time in which yaa ayyuha alladheena aamanuu – O you who believe comes in the Qur’aan is in Surat Al Baqarah, verse 153.

O you who believe, seek help through patience and prayer. Indeed, Allaah is with the patient.”

[Surat Al Baqarah, verse 153]

Below is part of the tafseer [Tafseer Ibn Katheer] regarding this verse Tafseer Surat Al Baqarah: 153.

The Virtue of Patience and Prayer

After Allah commanded that He be appreciated, He ordained patience and prayer. It is a fact that the servant is either enjoying a bounty that he should be thankful for, or suffering a calamity that he should meet with patience. A Hadith states:

«عَجَبًا لِلْمُؤْمِنِ لَا يَقْضِي اللهُ لَهُ قَضَاءً إلَّا كَانَ خَيْرًا لَهُ: إِنْ أَصَابَتْهُ

سَرَّاءُ فَشَكَرَ كَانَ خَيْرًا لَهُ وإنْ أَصَابَتْهُ ضَرَّاءُ فَصَبَرَ كَانَ خَيْرًا لَه»

(Amazing is the believer, for whatever Allah decrees for him, it is better for him! If he is tested with a bounty, he is grateful for it and this is better for him; and if he is afflicted with a hardship, he is patient with it and this is better for him.)

Allah has stated that the best tools to help ease the effects of the afflictions are patience and prayer. Earlier we mentioned Allah’s statement:

﴿وَاسْتَعِينُواْ بِالصَّبْرِ وَالصَّلَوةِ وَإِنَّهَا لَكَبِيرَةٌ إِلاَّ عَلَى الْخَـشِعِينَ ﴾

(And seek help in patience and As-Salah (the prayer) and truly, it is extremely heavy and hard except for Al-Khashi`in ﴿i.e., the true believers in Allah.) (2:45)

There are several types of Sabr ـ patience: one for avoiding the prohibitions and sins, one for acts of worship and obedience. The second type carries more rewards than the first type. There is a third type of patience required in the face of the afflictions and hardships, which is mandatory, like repentance.

`Abdur-Rahman bin Zayd bin Aslam said, “Sabr has two parts: patience for the sake of Allah concerning what He is pleased with (i.e., acts of worship and obedience), even if it is hard on the heart and the body, and patience when avoiding what He dislikes, even if it is desired. Those who acquire these qualities will be among the patient persons whom Allah shall greet (when they meet Him in the Hereafter; refer to Surat Al-Ahzab 33:44), Allah willing.”

“O You Who Believe…” #1

“O you who believe…” – this is a phrase which is repeated in the Qur’aan over 80 times subhaanAllaah.

When reading the Qur’aan and pondering on its meaning, pay special attention to the verses starting with Yaa ayyuha alladheena aamanuu, as the statement following it is something we should reflect and ponder on as believers.

The first time in which yaa ayyuha alladheena aamanuu – O you who believe comes in the Qur’aan is in Surat Al Baqarah, verse 104

O you who believe, say not [to Allah’s Messenger], “Raa‘inaa” but say, “Undhurnaa” and hear. And for the disbelievers is a painful punishment.”

[Surat Al Baqarah, verse 104]

Below is the part of the tafseer [Tafseer Ibn Katheer] regarding this verse; the full tafseer regarding this verse can be read here: Tafseer Ibn Katheer 2:104

Tafseer of this verse (Ibn Katheer)

Allah forbade His believing servants from imitating the behavior and deeds of the disbelievers.

The Jews used to use devious words that hide what they really meant. May Allah’s curse be upon them.

When they wanted to say, `hear us,’ they would use the word Raa’inaa, which is an insult (in Hebrew, but means `hear us’ in Arabic).

Allah said,

مِّنَ الَّذِينَ هَادُواْ يُحَرِّفُونَ الْكَلِمَ عَن مَّوَاضِعِهِ وَيَقُولُونَ سَمِعْنَا وَعَصَيْنَا وَاسْمَعْ غَيْرَ مُسْمَعٍ وَرَعِنَا لَيّاً بِأَلْسِنَتِهِمْ وَطَعْناً فِى الدِّينِ وَلَوْ أَنَّهُمْ قَالُواْ سَمِعْنَا وَأَطَعْنَا وَاسْمَعْ وَانْظُرْنَا لَكَانَ خَيْراً لَّهُمْ وَأَقْوَمَ وَلَكِن لَّعَنَهُمُ اللَّهُ بِكُفْرِهِمْ فَلاَ يُؤْمِنُونَ إِلاَّ قَلِيلاً

(Among those who are Jews, there are some who displace words from (their) right places and say: “We hear your word (O Muhammad ) and disobey,” and “Hear and let you (O Muhammad ) hear nothing.” And Ra`ina with a twist of their tongues and as a mockery of the religion (Islam). And if only they had said: “We hear and obey,” and “Do make us understand,” it would have been better for them, and more proper; but Allah cursed them for their disbelief, so they believe not except a few) (4:46).

Also, the Hadiths stated that when they would greet Muslims, they would say, `As-Samu `alaykum,’ meaning, `death be to you’. This is why we were commanded to answer them by saying, `Wa `alaykum,’ meaning, `and to you too’, then our supplication against them shall be answered, rather than theirs against us.

Allah forbade the believers from imitating the disbelievers in tongue or deed. Allah said,

[يَـأَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ لاَ تَقُولُواْ رَعِنَا وَقُولُواْ انظُرْنَا وَاسْمَعُواْ وَلِلكَـفِرِينَ عَذَابٌ أَلِيمٌ ]

(O you who believe! Say not (to the Messenger ) Ra`ina but say Undhurna (make us understand) and hear. And for the disbelievers there is a painful torment) (2:104).