The Quran

Commentaries for 2.130

Al Baqara (The cow) - البقرة

2.130 Abbas - Tanwîr al-Miqbâs min Tafsîr Ibn ‘Abbâs
(And who forsaketh the religion of Abraham) renounces the Religion of Abraham and his practices (save him who befooleth himself?) has ruined himself, lost his mind or is foolish? (Verily We chose him) i.e. Abraham (in the world) by taking him as a friend; as it is said this means: We have chosen him in this world by bestowing upon him prophethood, Islam and goodly offspring, (and lo! In the Hereafter he is among the righteous ones) with his forefathers, the messengers, in Paradise.
2.130 Asrar - Kashf Al-Asrar
And who shrinks from the creed of Abraham but one foolish in himself? We chose him in this world, and in the next world he shall be among the wholesome.
One of these two verses is in praise of the Beloved [MuḤammad], the other in praise of the Bosom Friend [Abraham]. Although both are caressed and worthy prophets, adorned by the generous bestowal and the bounteousness of the Lord, there is a difference between the Beloved and the Bosom Friend! The Bosom Friend is the desirer, and the Beloved the desired. The desirer is the wanter,
and the desired the wanted. The desirer is the traveler, and the desired is the snatched away. The desirer stands in the station of service in his traveling, and the desired stands on the carpet of companionship in the pulling of the Real. When someone is in his own traveling, his road will not be empty of deception. This is why the Bosom Friend's road, despite the greatness of his state, was not empty of deception. Thus, when the star of deception came into his road, he said, “This is my Lord” [6:76]. In the same way, the Lordhood kept on opening up ambuscades of deception by means of the moon and the sun. Finally protection took the reins of his bosom friendship and pulled him to itself from the world of deception. He said, “Surely I have turned my face toward Him who originated the heavens and the earth, unswerving” [6:79].
MuṣṬafā, however, was in the pull of the Real. The ambuscade of deception was not able to make his road steep. Rather, on that night everything that was not and then came to be sought his help from deception. They had recourse to the lights of his Shariah against deception and backsliding. He was confirmed by the Real's pull to such an extent that he did not look at any of that from the corner of his eye. The eyesight did not swerve, nor did it trespass [53:17].
There is as much difference between the Bosom Friend and the Beloved as there is between the traveler and the snatched away. The Bosom Friend had the attribute of servitors at the threshold of Lordhood, standing on his own feet: “Surely I have turned my face toward Him who originated the heavens and the earth, unswerving.
” The Beloved was sitting in joy in the Presence of Unity in the row of the near and the confidants: “The blessed salutations and the goodly prayers belong to God.” This sitting is the place of the snatched away, and that standing is the station of the travelers. The Bosom Friend was in his own traveling when he said, “And who I hope will forgive me my offense on the Day of Doom” [26:82]. The Beloved was in the pull of the Real when it was said to him, “So that God may forgive thee thy sins” [48:2]. The Bosom Friend said, “Disgrace me not on the day when they are raised up [26:87]: O Lord, do not shame me on the day of the Upraising.” About the Beloved He said, “The day when God will not disgrace the Prophet [66:8]: We will not shame him.” The Bosom Friend said, “God suffices me” [39:38]. It was said to the Beloved, “O Prophet, God suffices thee” [8:64]. The Bosom Friend said, “Surely I am going to my Lord” [37:99]. It was said about the Beloved, “Who took His servant by night” [17:1]. What a difference between the two!
The Bosom Friend is the one who acts so that God will approve of him. The Beloved is the one for whom God decrees what is approved and desired by him. This is why He says, “Thy Lord shall bestow upon thee so that thou shalt approve” [93:5].
Our Lord, and raise up amidst them a messenger from among them, who will recite Thy signs to them, teach them the Book and the Wisdom, and purify them. Concerning the reason for the arrangement of the words of this verse, the folk of the meanings have said that the first way station of MuṣṬafā's prophethood is that he made manifest the signs and marks of his prophethood to the people and recited God's Book to them. This is why He says first, “who will recite Thy signs to them.” Then, after reciting the Book, teaching is needed, that is, he should teach the Book's realities and meanings to the people so that they may perceive them and put them into practice. Teaching them the Book conveys them to wisdom. For, if someone recites the Book, perceives its realities, and puts it into practice, inescapably the knowledge of wisdom will show itself to him. Then through the knowledge of wisdom he will become pure and virtuous, worthy of the neighborhood of the Real. This is the reason for the arrangement of the verse-first He said recitation, then teaching, then wisdom, then purification. And God knows best.
2.130 Jalal - Al-Jalalayn
Who therefore, meaning ‘none’, shrinks from the religion of Abraham, abandoning it, except he who fools himself?, that is to say, either the one who ignores that his soul has been created for God, and that it is obliged to worship Him, or the one who treats it with frivolity and degrades it. Indeed We chose him, We elected him, in this world, for prophethood and friendship, and in the Hereafter he shall be among the righteous, those of the high stations [al-darajāt al-‘ulā, cf. Q. 20:75].
2.130 Kashani - Kashani
Who therefore shrinks from the religion of Abraham, that is, the religion of the affirmation of [God's] Oneness, except he who fools himselfḍ, except he who veils himself totally from the light of the intellect, remaining in the station of his soul's darkness, in other words, being foolish in himself (safiha nafsan), [if read syntactically] as a specification, or safiha fī nafsihi, with the removal of the genitive-case preposition [fī]. Indeed We chose him in this world, that is to say, the one who is from among the beloved, destined pre-eternally for precedence (sābiqa), We select him upon his annihilation in the Oneness, and in the Hereafter, that is, in the state of subsistence after annihilation, he shall be [among the righteous], among the people of uprightness, those who are good for the government of the [cosmic] Order and the perfection of the species.
2.130-132 Kathir - Ibn Al Kathir
Only the Fools deviate from Ibrahim's Religion
Allah refuted the disbelievers' innovations of associating others with Allah in defiance of the religion of Ibrahim, the leader of the upright. Ibrahim always singled out Allah in worship, with sincerity, and he did not call upon others besides Allah. He did not commit Shirk, even for an instant. He disowned every other deity that was being worshipped instead of Allah and defied all his people in this regard. Prophet Ibrahim said,
فَلَماَّ رَأَى الشَّمْسَ بَازِغَةً قَالَ هَـذَا رَبِّى هَـذَآ أَكْبَرُ فَلَمَّآ أَفَلَتْ قَالَ يقَوْمِ إِنِّى بَرِىءٌ مِّمَّا تُشْرِكُونَ - إِنِّى وَجَّهْتُ وَجْهِىَ لِلَّذِى فَطَرَ السَّمَـوَتِ وَالاٌّرْضَ حَنِيفاً وَمَآ أَنَاْ مِنَ الْمُشْرِكِينَ
(O my people! I am indeed free from all that you join as partners (in worship with Allah). Verily, I have turned my face towards Him Who has created the heavens and the earth Hanifa (Islamic Monotheism), and I am not of Al-Mushrikin.) (6:78-79). Also, Allah said,
وَإِذْ قَالَ إِبْرَهِيمُ لاًّبِيهِ وَقَوْمِهِ إِنَّنِى بَرَآءٌ مِّمَّا تَعْبُدُونَ - إِلاَّ الَّذِى فَطَرَنِى فَإِنَّهُ سَيَهْدِينِ
(And (remember) when Ibrahim said to his father and his people: "Verily, I am innocent of what you worship. "Except Him (i.e. I worship none but Allah alone) Who did create me; and verily, He will guide me'') (43:26-27),
وَمَا كَانَ اسْتِغْفَارُ إِبْرَهِيمَ لاًّبِيهِ إِلاَّ عَن مَّوْعِدَةٍ وَعَدَهَآ إِيَّاهُ فَلَمَّا تَبَيَّنَ لَهُ أَنَّهُ عَدُوٌّ لِلَّهِ تَبَرَّأَ مِنْهُ إِنَّ إِبْرَهِيمَ لأَوَّاهٌ حَلِيمٌ
(And Ibrahim's invoking (of Allah) for his father's forgiveness was only because of a promise he (Ibrahim) had made to him (his father). But when it became clear to him (Ibrahim) that he (his father) was an enemy of Allah, he dissociated himself from him. Verily, Ibrahim was Awwah (one who invokes Allah with humility, glorifies Him and remembers Him much) and was forbearing) (9:114), and,
إِنَّ إِبْرَهِيمَ كَانَ أُمَّةً قَـنِتًا لِلَّهِ حَنِيفًا وَلَمْ يَكُ مِنَ الْمُشْرِكِينَ - شَاكِراً لانْعُمِهِ اجْتَبَـهُ وَهَدَاهُ إِلَى صِرَطٍ مُّسْتَقِيمٍ - وَءاتَيْنَـهُ فِى الْدُّنْيَا حَسَنَةً وَإِنَّهُ فِى الاٌّخِرَةِ لَمِنَ الصَّـلِحِينَ
(Verily, Ibrahim was an Ummah (a leader having all the good qualities, or a nation), obedient to Allah, Hanif (i.e. to worship none but Allah), and he was not one of those who were Al-Mushrikin. (He was) thankful for His (Allah's) favors. He (Allah) chose him (as an intimate friend) and guided him to a straight path. And We gave him good in this world, and in the Hereafter he shall be of the righteous.) (16:120-122).
This is why Allah said here,
وَمَن يَرْغَبُ عَن مِّلَّةِ إِبْرَهِيمَ
(And who turns away from the religion of Ibrahim), meaning, abandons his path, way and method
إِلاَّ مَن سَفِهَ نَفْسَهُ
(except him who fools himself) meaning, who commits injustice against himself by deviating from the truth, to wickedness. Such a person will be defying the path of he who was chosen in this life to be a true Imam, from the time he was young, until Allah chose him to be His Khalil, and who shall be among the successful in the Last Life. Is there anything more insane than deviating from this path and following the path of misguidance and deviation instead Is there more injustice than this Allah said,
إِنَّ الشِّرْكَ لَظُلْمٌ عَظِيمٌ
(Verily, joining others in worship with Allah is a great Zulm (wrong) indeed) (31:13).
Abu Al-`Aliyah and Qatadah said, "This Ayah (2:130) was revealed about the Jews who invented a practice that did not come from Allah and that defied the religion of Ibrahim.'' Allah's statement,
مَا كَانَ إِبْرَهِيمُ يَهُودِيًّا وَلاَ نَصْرَانِيًّا وَلَكِن كَانَ حَنِيفًا مُّسْلِمًا وَمَا كَانَ مِنَ الْمُشْرِكِينَ - إِنَّ أَوْلَى النَّاسِ بِإِبْرَهِيمَ لَلَّذِينَ اتَّبَعُوهُ وَهَـذَا النَّبِىُّ وَالَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ وَاللَّهُ وَلِىُّ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ
(Ibrahim was neither a Jew nor a Christian, but he was a true Muslim Hanifa (to worship none but Allah alone) and he was not of Al-Mushrikin. Verily, among mankind who have the best claim to Ibrahim are those who followed him, and this Prophet (Muhammad ) and those who have believed (Muslims). And Allah is the Wali (Protector and Helper) of the believers.) (3:67-68), testifies to this fact.
Allah said next,
إِذْ قَالَ لَهُ رَبُّهُ أَسْلِمْ قَالَ أَسْلَمْتُ لِرَبِّ الْعَـلَمِينَ
(When his Lord said to him, "Submit (i. e. be a Muslim)!'' He said, "I have submitted myself (as a Muslim) to the Lord of the `Alamin (mankind, Jinn and all that exists).'')
This Ayah indicates that Allah commanded Ibrahim to be sincere with Him and to abide and submit to Him; Ibrahim perfectly adhered to Allah's command. Allah's statement,
وَوَصَّى بِهَآ إِبْرَهِيمُ بَنِيهِ وَيَعْقُوبُ
(And this (submission to Allah, Islam) was enjoined by Ibrahim upon his sons and by Ya`qub) means, Ibrahim commanded his offspring to follow this religion, that is, Islam, for Allah. Or, the Ayah might be referring to Ibrahim's words,
أَسْلَمْتُ لِرَبِّ الْعَـلَمِينَ
(I have submitted myself (as a Muslim) to the Lord of the `Alamin (mankind, Jinn and all that exists)).
This means that these Prophets loved these words so much that they preserved them until the time of death and advised their children to adhere to them after them. Similarly, Allah said,
وَجَعَلَهَا كَلِمَةً بَـقِيَةً فِى عَقِبِهِ
(And he (Ibrahim) made it i.e. La ilaha illallah (none has the right to be worshipped but Allah alone) a Word lasting among his offspring, (true Monotheism)) (43:28).
It might be that Ibrahim advised his children, including Jacob, Isaac's son, who were present. It appears, and Allah knows best, that Isaac was endowed with Jacob, during the lifetime of Ibrahim and Sarah, for the good news includes both of them in Allah's statement,
فَبَشَّرْنَـهَا بِإِسْحَـقَ وَمِن وَرَآءِ إِسْحَـقَ يَعْقُوبَ
(But We gave her (Sarah) glad tidings of Ishaq (Isaac), and after Ishaq, of Ya`qub (Jacob)) (11:71).
Also, if Jacob was not alive then, there would be no use here in mentioning him specifically among Isaac's children. Also, Allah said in Surat Al-`Ankabut,
وَوَهَبْنَا لَهُ إِسْحَـقَ وَيَعْقُوبَ وَجَعَلْنَا فِى ذُرِّيَّتِهِ النُّبُوَّةَ وَالْكِتَـبَ
(And We bestowed on him (Ibrahim), Ishaq and Ya`qub, and We ordained among his offspring prophethood and the Book.) (29:27), and,
وَوَهَبْنَا لَهُ إِسْحَـقَ وَيَعْقُوبَ نَافِلَةً
(And We bestowed upon him Ishaq, and (a grandson) Ya`qub) (21:72), thus, indicating that this occurred during Ibrahim's lifetime. Also, Jacob built Bayt Al-Maqdis, as earlier books testified. The Two Sahihs recorded that Abu Dharr said, "I said, `O Messenger of Allah! Which Masjid was built first' He said, (Al-Masjid Al-Haram (Al-Ka`bah).) I said, `Then' He said, (Bayt Al- Maqdis.) I said, `How many years later' He said, (Forty years. )'' Further, the advice that Jacob gave to his children, which we will soon mention, testifies that Jacob was among those who received the advice mentioned in Ayat above (2:130-132).
Adhering to Tawhid until Death
Allah said,
يَـبَنِىَّ إِنَّ اللَّهَ اصْطَفَى لَكُمُ الدِّينَ فَلاَ تَمُوتُنَّ إَلاَّ وَأَنتُم مُّسْلِمُونَ
((Saying), "O my sons! Allah has chosen for you the (true) religion, then die not except as Muslims.'') meaning, perform righteous deeds during your lifetime and remain on this path, so that Allah will endow you with the favor of dying upon it. Usually, one dies upon the path that he lived on and is resurrected according to what he died on. Allah, the Most Generous, helps those who seek to do good deeds to remain on the righteous path.
This by no means contradicts the authentic Hadith that says,
«إِنَّ الرَّجُلَ لَيَعْمَلُ بِعَمَلِ أَهْلِ الْجَنَّةِ حَتّـى مَا يَكُونُ بَيْنَهُ وَبَيْنَهَا إِلَّا بَاعٌ أَوْ ذِرَاعٌ فَيَسْبِقُ عَلَيْهِ الْكِتَابُ فَيَعمَلُ بِعَمَلِ أَهْلِ النَّار فَيَدْخُلُهَا. وَإِنَّ الرَّجُلَ لَيَعْمَلُ بعَمَلِ أَهلِ النَّارِ حَتَّى مَا يَكُونُ بَيْنَهُ وَبَيْنَهَا إِلَّا بَاعٌ أَو ذِرَاعٌ فَيَسْبِقُ عَلَيْهِ الْكِتَابُ فَيَعْمَلُ بعَمَلِ أَهْلِ الْجَنَّةِ فَيَدْخُلُهَا»
(Man might perform the works of the people of Paradise until only a span of outstretched arms or a cubit separates him from it, then the Book (destiny) takes precedence, and he performs the works of the people of the Fire and thus enters it. Also, man might perform the works of the people of the Fire until only a span of outstretched arms or a cubit separates him from the Fire, but the Book takes precedence and he performs the works of the people of Paradise and thus enters it.) Allah said, (92:5-10),
فَأَمَّا مَنْ أَعْطَى وَاتَّقَى - وَصَدَّقَ بِالْحُسْنَى - فَسَنُيَسِّرُهُ لِلْيُسْرَى - وَأَمَّا مَن بَخِلَ وَاسْتَغْنَى - وَكَذَّبَ بِالْحُسْنَى - فَسَنُيَسِّرُهُ لِلْعُسْرَى
(As for him who gives (in charity) and keeps his duty to Allah and fears Him. And believes in Al-Husna. We will make smooth for him the path of ease (goodness). But he who is a greedy miser and thinks himself self-sufficient. And belies Al-Husna (none has the right to be worshipped except Allah). We will make smooth for him the path for evil),
2.130-133 Maududi - Sayyid Abul Ala Maududi - Tafhim al-Qur'an
The word used in the text is "aslim," that is, "become a Muslim," or "adopt the attitude of Islam" (surrender to the will of Allah). Thus a Muslim is one who surrenders himself completely to Allah and obeys Him; who acknowledges Allah alone as His Lord, Master, Sovereign, Ruler, Lawgiver and God of worship; and who adopts the way of life prescribed by Him. Islam is the religious system based on this creed and attitude. This was the religion of all the Prophets who came to different countries and different nations.
Special mention of Jacob has been made because the Israelites were his direct descendants.
The Arabic word "din" has a much wider scope than the English ward "religion".It covers life in its entirety, and no aspect of individual or community life is outside its realm.
Though Jacob's death has been described in detail in the Bible, no mention has been made of this last will of his. It, however, has been given in detail in the Talmud and its substance is more or less the same as that contained in the Qur'an: "At the time when Jacob quitted this world, he summoned his sans and said to them, 'Serve the Lord your God, and He will deliver ye from all trouble. even as He delivered your fathers..... Teach your children to love God, and observe His commandments, for God will guard those who do justly and walk in righteousness through all his ways.....' And the sons of Jacob responded, 'All that you have commanded us, our father!, we will do. May God he with us.' And Jacob answered: 'The Lord will be with ye if ye shall depart not from His ways to the right hand or the left'." The same thing about the Prophet Jacob's will has been cited by Rodwell front Midr. Rabbah, "Have ye any doubts in your hearts concerning the Holy One, Messed be He." They said, "Hear O Israel, our Father. As there is no doubt in thy heart, so neither is there in ours. For the Lord is our God, and He is One."
2.130 Qushairi - Al-Qushairi
Who therefore shrinks from the religion of Abraham except he who fools himselfḍ Indeed We chose him in this world and in the hereafter he shall be among the righteous. He related that among created beings He preferred the Friend al-khalīl عليه السلام and therefore made his religion dīn the religion. The distinguishing mark [of the religion] is the declaration of [God's] oneness tawḥīd and its attribute is deep knowledge maʿrifa. For whoever shrinks from [Abraham's] religion or deviates from his way fa-man raghiba ʿan dīnihi aw ḥāda ʿan sunnatihi is left with falsehood fa-l-bāṬilu maṬraḥu and falls into disbelief wa-l-kufr mahwāhu. For the lights in their entirety are only acquired from [Abraham's] light.