The Quran

Commentaries for 18.84

Al Kahf (The cave) - الكهف

18.84 Abbas - Tanwîr al-Miqbâs min Tafsîr Ibn ‘Abbâs
(Lo! We made him strong in the land and gave unto every thing a road) the knowledge of the roads and constellation.
18.84 Jalal - Al-Jalalayn
Indeed We empowered him throughout the land, by facilitating [for him] the journeying therein, and We gave him to everything, of which one might have need, a way, a route to lead him to that which he sought.
18.84 Kashani - Kashani
Indeed We established him, throughout the land of the body by empowering him and giving him the fixity to be able to gather wealth from universal and particular meanings, and to [be able to] journey to whichever region of the East and West he wishes; and We gave him to everything, that he desired, in the way of perfections, a road, that is, by which to arrive thereat.
18.83-84 Kathir - Ibn Al Kathir
The Story of Dhul-Qarnayn Allah says to His Prophet,
(And they ask you) O Muhammad,
عَن ذِى الْقَرْنَيْنِ
(about Dhul-Qarnayn.) i.e., about his story. We have already mentioned how the disbelievers of Makkah sent word to the People of the Book and asked them for some information with which they could test the Prophet. They (the People of the Book) said, `Ask him about a man who traveled extensively throughout the earth, and about some young men who nobody knows what they did, and about the Ruh (the soul),' then Surat Al-Kahf was revealed. Dhul-Qarnayn had great Power
إِنَّا مَكَّنَّا لَهُ فِى الاٌّرْضِ
(Verily, We established him in the earth,) means, `We have given him great power, so that he had all that kings could have of might, armies, war equipment and siege machinery.' So he had dominion over the east and the west, all countries and their kings submitted to him, and all the nations, Arab and non-Arab, served him. Some of them said he was called Dhul-Qarnayn (the one with two horns) because he reached the two "Horns" of the sun, east and west, where it rises and where it sets.
وَآتَيْنَـهُ مِن كُلِّ شَىْءٍ سَبَباً
(and We gave him the means of everything.) Ibn `Abbas, Mujahid, Sa`id bin Jubayr, `Ikrimah, As-Suddi, Qatadah, Ad-Dahhak and others said, "This means knowledge.'' Qatadah also said,
وَآتَيْنَـهُ مِن كُلِّ شَىْءٍ سَبَباً
(and We gave him the means of everything.) "The different parts and features of the earth.'' Concerning Bilqis, Allah said,
وَأُوتِيَتْ مِن كُلِّ شَىْءٍ
(she has been given all things) 27:23, meaning all things that monarchs like her are given. Thus too was Dhul-Qarnayn: Allah gave him the means of all things, meaning the means and power to conquer all areas, regions and countries, to defeat enemies, suppress the kings of the earth and humiliate the people of Shirk. He was given all that a man like him would need. And Allah knows best.
18.84-88 Maududi - Sayyid Abul Ala Maududi - Tafhim al-Qur'an
"The limit where the sun set" does not mean the "place" of the setting of the sun. According to Ibn Kathir, it means that he marched to the West conquering one country after the other till he reached the last boundary of the land, beyond which there was ocean.
"He found the sun setting in black muddy waters of the sea": if Zul Qarnain was Cyrus, then that place would be the western limit of Asia Minor and the "black waters" would be the Aegean Sea. This interpretation is supported by the use of the word "`ain"instead of "bahr" in the Qur'an.
"We said to him" does not necessarily mean that Allah directly revealed to him these words, and that Zul-Qarnain was a Prophet or was the one who received inspiration from Allah, and the same is the reasonable conjecture. This concerns the time when Zul-Qarnain had taken possession of the land as a conqueror and the conquered people were utterly at your mercy. Then Allah posed a question before his conscience, as if to say, "Now is the time of your trial. These people are utterly at your mercy, and you have the option either to behave unjustly towards them or to treat them generously."