38 - Saad

4 Tafsir(s) related to verse 38.28

Al-Jalalayn

Or shall We treat those who believe and perform righteous deeds like those who cause corruption in the earth; or shall We treat the God-fearing like the profligate? This was revealed when the Meccan disbelievers said to the believers, ‘In the Hereafter we will receive the same [reward] as that which you will receive’ (am, ‘or’, contains the [rhetorical] hamza of denial).

Ibn Al Kathir

The Wisdom behind the Creation of This World

Allah tells us that He did not create the creatures in vain; He created them to worship Him Alone, then He will gather them on the Day of Gathering and will reward the obedient and punish the disbelievers. Allah says:

وَمَا خَلَقْنَا السَّمَآءَ وَالاٌّرْضَ وَمَا بَيْنَهُمَا بَـطِلاً ذَلِكَ ظَنُّ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُواْ

(And We created not the heaven and the earth and all that is between them without purpose! That is the consideration of those who disbelieve!) meaning, those who do not think that the resurrection and the place of return will occur, but they think that there is nothing after this world.

فَوَيْلٌ لِّلَّذِينَ كَفَرُواْ مِنَ النَّارِ

(Then woe to those who disbelieve from the Fire!) means, woe to them on the Day when they will be resurrected, from the Fire that is prepared for them. Then Allah explains that because of His justice and wisdom, He does not treat the believers and the disbelievers equally. Allah says:

أَمْ نَجْعَلُ الَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ وَعَمِلُواْ الصَّـلِحَـتِ كَالْمُفْسِدِينَ فِى الاٌّرْضِ أَمْ نَجْعَلُ الْمُتَّقِينَ كَالْفُجَّارِ

(Shall We treat those who believe and do righteous good deeds as those who do mischief on the earth Or shall We treat Those who have Taqwa as the evildoers) meaning, `We shall not do that.' They are not equal before Allah, and since this is the case, there must inevitably be another realm in which those who obey Allah will be rewarded and the wicked will be punished. This teaching indicates to those of a sound mind and upright nature that there must inevitably be a resurrection and recompense. We see evildoers and criminals are prospering and increasing in wealth, children and luxury, until they die in that state. We see oppressed believers dying of grief and distress, so by the wisdom of the All-Wise, All-Knowing, All-Just who does not do even a speck of dust's weight of injustice, there should be a time when the rights of the oppressed are restored with due justice. If this does not happen in this world, there must be another realm where recompense may be made and consolation may be found. The Qur'an teaches sound aims based on a rational way of thinking, so Allah says:

كِتَـبٌ أَنزَلْنَـهُ إِلَيْكَ مُبَـرَكٌ لِّيَدَّبَّرُواْ ءَايَـتِهِ وَلِيَتَذَكَّرَ أُوْلُو الاٌّلْبَـبِ

((This is) a Book which We have sent down to you, full of blessings, that they may ponder over its Ayat, and that men of understanding may remember.) meaning, those who are possessed of wisdom and reason.

Sayyid Abul Ala Maududi - Tafhim al-Qur'an

That is, "We have not created anything in the world merely in sport and fun so that it may be without any wisdom and purpose and justice, and there may acme no result from any act, good or bad." This is the conclusion of the preceding discourse as well as an introduction to the following theme. The object of this statement as a conclusion to the discourse is to impress the following truth: ¦Man has not been left to wander about at will in the world, nor is this world a lawless kingdom that one may do here whatever one likes with impunity." As an introduction to the following theme, the sentence is meant to say: "The person who does not believe in the meting out of the rewards and punishments, and thinks that both the good and the evil people will ultimately end up in the dust after death and that nobody will be called to account, nor will anyone be rewarded for good or punished for evil, in fact, regards the world as a plaything and its Creator a senseless player, and thinks that by creating the world and man in it, the Creator of the Universe has committed a useless thing. The same thing has been stated in different ways at several places in the Qur'an, e.g. ¦Did you think that We created you without any purpose, and that you would never be brought back to Us?" (AI-Mu'minun: 115).

"We have not created the heavens and the earth and whatever lies between them merely in sport: We have created them with the truth, but most of them do not know. For the resurrection of them all the appointed time is the Day of Decision." (Ad-Dukhan: 38-40).

That is, "Do you think it is reasonable and fair that both the pious and the wicked should be treated alike in the end? Do you regard this concept as satisfying that the pious man should not get any reward for his piety and the wrongdoer should not receive any punishment for his sins? Obviously, if there is to be no Hereafter, and there is to be no accountability and no rewards and no punishments for human acts, it negates both Allah's wisdom and His justice, and the entire order of the Universe becomes a blind order. On this assumption there remains no motive for doing good and no deterrent against evil. God forbid, if the Godhead of God should be such a lawless kingdom, the one who leads a pious lift in the face of all kinds of hardships in the world and endeavors to reform the people, would be a foolish person, and the one who gains benefits by committing All kinds of excesses and enjoys sinful pleasures of life, would be a wise man."

The Qur'an has been called a blessed Book in the sense that it is highly useful for man: it gives him the best guidance to improve and reform his life: by following it he has only to gain and nothing to lose.

Tanwîr al-Miqbâs min Tafsîr Ibn ‘Abbâs

(Shall We treat those who believe) in Muhammad (pbuh) and in the Qur'an (and do good works) and perform acts of obedience between themselves and their Lord; the reference here is to 'Ali Ibn Abi Talib, Hamzah Ibn 'Abd al-Muttalib and 'Ubaydah Ibn al-Harth (as those who spread corruption) as the idolaters (in the earth) i.e. 'Utbah and Shaybah the sons of Rabi'ah, and al-Walid Ibn 'Utbah; (or shall We treat the Pious) who ward off disbelief, idolatry and indecent acts, i.e. 'Ali and his two fellow believers (as the wicked) as the disbelievers: 'Utbah and Shaybah the sons of Rabi'ah, and al-Walid Ibn 'Utbah? Each one of these three had, on the Day of Badr, a dual with 'Ali, Hamzah and 'Ubaydah, respectively; 'Ali killed al-Walid Ibn 'Utbah, Hamzah killed 'Utbah Ibn Rabi'ah and 'Ubaydah killed Shaybah.