47 - Muhammad

4 Tafsir(s) related to verse 47.17


But those who are [rightly] guided, namely, the believers, He, God, enhances their guidance and invests them with fear [of Him], He inspires them to [do] that by which they can be wary of [ending up in] the Fire.

Ibn Al Kathir

The Description of the Situation of the Hypocrites and the Command to maintain Tawhid and seek Forgiveness

Allah describes the hypocrites' stupidity and limited understanding. They used to sit before Allah's Messenger and listen to his words without understanding anything. Then when they left from his presence,

قَالُواْ لِلَّذِينَ أُوتُواْ الْعِلْمَ

(they say to those who have received knowledge) from the Companions

مَاذَا قَالَ ءَانِفاً

("What is it that he has said just now'') meaning, at this moment. They did not understand what he said, nor did they care about it. Allah says,

أُوْلَـئِكَ الَّذِينَ طَبَعَ اللَّهُ عَلَى قُلُوبِهِمْ وَاتَّبَعُواْ أَهْوَآءَهُمْ

(Such are the men whose hearts Allah has sealed because they followed their lusts.) which means that they had neither sound understanding nor correct intentions. Allah then says,

وَالَّذِينَ اهْتَدَوْاْ زَادَهُمْ هُدًى

(And as for those who accept guidance, He increases them in guidance) which means that those who seek guidance, Allah facilitates it for them; He guides them to it, makes them firm on it, and gives them more of it.

وَءَاتَـهُمْ تَقُوَاهُمْ

(and bestows on them their Taqwa. ) meaning, He inspires them to their righteous guidance. Allah then says,

فَهَلْ يَنظُرُونَ إِلاَّ السَّاعَةَ أَن تَأْتِيَهُمْ بَغْتَةً

(Do they then await except that the Hour should come upon them suddenly) meaning, while they are unaware of it.

فَقَدْ جَآءَ أَشْرَاطُهَا

(But already there have come (some of) its portents;) meaning, the signs of its approach. This is similar to Allah's saying,

هَـذَا نَذِيرٌ مِّنَ النُّذُرِ الاٍّوْلَى - أَزِفَتِ الاٌّزِفَةُ

(This is a warner of the warners of old. The approaching Day has drawn near.) (53:56-57) And His saying,

اقْتَرَبَتِ السَّاعَةُ وَانشَقَّ الْقَمَرُ

(The Hour has drawn near, and the moon has split.) (54:1) And His saying,

أَتَى أَمْرُ اللَّهِ فَلاَ تَسْتَعْجِلُوهُ

(The command of Allah is coming, so do not be impatient for it.) (16:1) And His saying,

اقْتَرَبَ لِلنَّاسِ حِسَـبُهُمْ وَهُمْ فِى غَفْلَةٍ مُّعْرِضُونَ

(The people's Day of Reckoning has approached while they turn away in heedlessness.) (21:1) Thus, the Messenger's advent is one of the signs of the Hour, because he is the Finality of the Messengers. With him, Allah has completed the religion and established the evidence against all people in a way that was never done by a previous Prophet. Allah's Messenger has most clearly informed about the signs and indications of the Hour, as we have discussed elsewhere. Al-Bukhari recorded from Sahl bin Sa`d, may Allah be pleased with him, that he saw Allah's Messenger bring his index and middle fingers together while he said,

«بُعِثْتُ أَنَا وَالسَّاعَةَ كَهَاتَيْن»

(I have been sent before the Hour as these two (fingers).) Allah continues,

فَأَنَّى لَهُمْ إِذَا جَآءَتْهُمْ ذِكْرَاهُمْ

(and when it (actually) is on them, how can they benefit then by their reminder) meaning, how would remembering benefit the disbelievers when the Hour comes upon them This is similar to Allah's saying,

يَوْمَئِذٍ يَتَذَكَّرُ الإِنسَـنُ وَأَنَّى لَهُ الذِّكْرَى

(On that Day will the human being remember, but what would that remembrance avail him then) (89:23) And His saying,

وَقَالُواْ ءَامَنَّا بِهِ وَأَنَّى لَهُمُ التَّنَاوُشُ مِن مَّكَانِ بَعِيدٍ

(They will say (in the Hereafter): "Now we believe in it!'' But how could they claim belief from such a far place) (34:52) Allah then says,

فَاعْلَمْ أَنَّهُ لاَ إِلَـهَ إِلأاللَّهِ

(So know that La ilaha illallah) This is a declaration that there is no true God except Allah. It is not something that is easy for him to command the people to have knowledge of. That is why Allah connected it with,

وَاسْتَغْفِرْ لِذَنبِكَ وَلِلْمُؤْمِنِينَ وَالْمُؤْمِنَـتِ

(and ask forgiveness for your sin and for the believing men and women.) In the Sahih, it is recorded that Allah's Messenger used to say,

«اللْهُمَّ اغْفِرْ لِي خَطِيئَتِي وَجَهْلِي وَإِسْرَافِي فِي أَمْرِي وَمَا أَنْتَ أَعْلَمُ بِهِ مِنِّي، اللْهُمَّ اغْفِرْ لِي هَزْلِي وَجِدِّي، وَخَطَئِي وَعَمْدِي، وَكُلُّ ذلِكَ عِنْدِي»

(O Allah, forgive my sin, my ignorance, my immoderation in my affairs, and all that You know better about my (faults) than myself. O Allah, forgive for me my joking, my seriousness, my unintended error, and my deliberate (mistakes) -- and I have done of all that.) It is also reported in the Sahih that he used to say at the end of the prayer,

«اللْهُمَّ اغْفِرْ لِي مَا قَدَّمْتُ وَمَا أَخَّرْتُ، وَمَا أَسْرَرْتُ وَمَا أَعْلَنْتُ، وَمَا أَسْرَفْتُ، وَمَا أَنْتَ أَعْلَمُ بِهِ مِنِّي، أَنْتَ إِلهِي لَا إِلهَ إِلَّا أَنْت»

(O Allah, forgive for me what I have previously done, what I may commit in future, what I have committed secretly, what I have committed openly, what I have done excessively, and all sins that You know better than me. You are my God. There is no (true) God except You.) It is also recorded in the Sahih that he used to say,

«يَاأَيُّهَا النَّاسُ تُوبُوا إِلَى رَبِّكُمْ، فَإِنِّي أَسْتَغْفِرُ اللهَ وَأَتُوبُ إِلَيْهِ فِي الْيَوْمِ أَكْثَرَ مِنْ سَبْعِينَ مَرَّة»

(O people! Repent to your Lord! Verily, I ask Allah for forgiveness and repent to Him more than seventy times every day.) Allah then says,

وَاللَّهُ يَعْلَمُ مُتَقَلَّبَكُمْ وَمَثْوَاكُمْ

(And Allah knows well your moving about, and your place of rest.) means, He knows how you behave during the day, and where you settle at night. This is similar to His saying,

وَهُوَ الَّذِى يَتَوَفَّـكُم بِالَّيْلِ وَيَعْلَمُ مَا جَرَحْتُم بِالنَّهَارِ

(It is He Who takes your souls by night and knows all that you do by day.)(6:60) And He says,

وَمَا مِن دَآبَّةٍ فِي الاٌّرْضِ إِلاَّ عَلَى اللَّهِ رِزْقُهَا وَيَعْلَمُ مُسْتَقَرَّهَا وَمُسْتَوْدَعَهَا كُلٌّ فِى كِتَابٍ مُّبِينٍ

(And there is no moving creature on earth but its provision is up to Allah, and He knows its dwelling place and its deposit (before birth and after death) -- all is in a clear register.) (11:6)

Sayyid Abul Ala Maududi - Tafhim al-Qur'an

This is concerning those disbelievers and hypocrites and unbelieving followers of the former Books, who sat in the assemblies of the Holy Prophet, listened to his discourses, or the verses of the Qur'an, but since in their hearts they were averse to the themes presented by him, they would understand nothing in spite of listening to him. Therefore, when they came out, they would ask the Muslims, "What was he saying just now?"

This was the real cause because of which their inner ears had become deaf to the teachings of the Holy Prophet; they were the slaves of their lusts, and the teachings that the Holy Prophet was presenting fell against their lusts. Therefore,if ever they sat in the assemblies of the Holy Prophet and listened to him, they would understand nothing.

That is, the same revelations about which the disbelievers and hypocrites ask, "What was he (the Holy Prophet) saying just now?" become a cause of further guidance for the rightly-guided people, and from the same assembly from which these unfortunate people rise without gaining anything, the fortunate ones return with a new treasure of knowledge and insight.

That is, Allah grants them the grace to develop in themselves the kind of piety (taqwa) that they have the capability to develop.

That is, as far as the explanation and clarification of the truth is concerned; it has been explained fully well by argument and reasoning, the miraculous discourses of the Qur'an, the pure character of the Prophet Muhammad (upon whom be Allah's peace) and the revolution in the lives of his Companions. Now, are these people awaiting that Resurrection itself should take place and then only they will believe?

The portents of Resurrection imply those signs which indicate that its approach is near. One such important sign is the advent of God's Last Prophet after whom no other prophet will come till Resurrection. Traditions have been related in Bukhari, Muslim. Tirmidhi and Musnad Ahmad on the authority of Hadrat Anas, Hadrat Sahl bin Sa'd As-Sa'idi and Hadrat Buraidah, saying that the Holy Prophet raised his index finger and the middle finger and said: "My advent and Resurrection are like these two fingers." That is, 'Just as there is no other finger between these two fingers, so no other prophet will be raised between the and Resurrection; after me only Resurrection now will occur."

Tanwîr al-Miqbâs min Tafsîr Ibn ‘Abbâs

(While as for those who walk aright) through faith, (He addeth) by means of your sermon (to their guidance) an insight into the matters of religion and sincerity in their intention, (and giveth them their protection) and inspire them their fearingness by shunning transgression and avoiding unlawful matters; it is also said that this means: and those who are guided by the abrogating revelations, Allah increases their guidance in the abrogated revelations and Allah, glorified and Exalted is He, honours them with the use of both the abrogating and the abrogated.