The Quran

Commentaries for 2.157

Al Baqara (The cow) - البقرة

2.157 Abbas - Tanwîr al-Miqbâs min Tafsîr Ibn ‘Abbâs
(Such) those who have these traits (are they on whom are blessings) forgiveness (from their Lord) in this world, (and mercy) in that they are not tormented in the Hereafter. (And such are they who are rightly guided) to remember that we are Allah's and unto Him we shall return.
2.157 Jalal - Al-Jalalayn
Upon those rest blessings, forgiveness, and mercy, grace, from their Lord, and those — they are the truly guided, to rectitude.
2.157 Kashani - Kashani
Upon those rest blessings, in the way of the existence bestowed upon them after annihilation, [existence] characterised by My attributes and illumined by My lights, and mercy [from their Lord], and light and guidance by which they guide [other] creatures to Me, and those - they are the truly guided, by My guidance, as mentioned in the supplication: 'And appoint us as guides, guided, not straying nor leading astray'.
2.155-157 Kathir - Ibn Al Kathir
The Believer is Patient with the Affliction and thus gains a Reward
Allah informs us that He tests and tries His servants, just as He said in another Ayah:
وَلَنَبْلُوَنَّكُمْ حَتَّى نَعْلَمَ الْمُجَـهِدِينَ مِنكُمْ وَالصَّـبِرِينَ وَنَبْلُوَ أَخْبَـرَكُمْ
(And surely, We shall try you till We test those who strive hard (for the cause of Allah) and As-Sabirin (the patient), and We shall test your facts (i.e., the one who is a liar, and the one who is truthful).) (47:31)
Hence, He tests them with the bounty sometimes and sometimes with the afflictions of fear and hunger. Allah said in another Ayah:
فَأَذَاقَهَا اللَّهُ لِبَاسَ الْجُوعِ وَالْخَوْفِ
(So Allah made it taste extreme of hunger (famine) and fear.) (16:112)
The frightened and the hungry persons show the effects of the affliction outwardly and this is why Allah has used here the word `Libas' (cover or clothes) of fear and hunger. In the Ayat above, Allah used the words:
بِشَيْءٍ مِّنَ الْخَوفْ وَالْجُوعِ
(with something of fear, hunger,) meaning, a little of each. Then (Allah said),
وَنَقْصٍ مِّنَ الاٌّمَوَالِ
(loss of wealth,) meaning, some of the wealth will be destroyed,
(lives) meaning, losing friends, relatives and loved ones to death,
(and fruits,) meaning, the gardens and the farms will not produce the usual or expected amounts. This is why Allah said next:
وَبَشِّرِ الصَّـبِرِينَ
(but give glad tidings to As-Sabirin (the patient).)
He then explained whom He meant by `the patient' whom He praised:
الَّذِينَ إِذَآ أَصَـبَتْهُم مُّصِيبَةٌ قَالُواْ إِنَّا لِلَّهِ وَإِنَّـآ إِلَيْهِ رَجِعونَ
(Who, when afflicted with calamity, say: "Truly, to Allah we belong and truly, to Him we shall return.'') meaning, those who recite this statement to comfort themselves in the face of their loss, know that they belong to Allah and that He does what He wills with His servants. They also know that nothing and no deed, even if it was the weight of an atom, will be lost with Allah on the Day of Resurrection. These facts thus compel them to admit that they are Allah's servants and that their return will be to Him in the Hereafter.
This is why Allah said: t
أُولَـئِكَ عَلَيْهِمْ صَلَوَتٌ مِّن رَّبْهِمْ وَرَحْمَةٌ
(They are those on whom are the Salawat (i. e., who are blessed and will be forgiven) from their Lord, and (they are those who) receive His mercy,) meaning, Allah's praise and mercy will be with them. Sa`id bin Jubayr added, "Meaning, safety from the torment.''
وَأُولَـئِكَ هُمُ الْمُهْتَدُونَ
(and it is they who are the guided ones.) `Umar bin Al-Khattab commented: "What righteous things, and what a great heights.
أُولَـئِكَ عَلَيْهِمْ صَلَوَتٌ مِّن رَّبْهِمْ وَرَحْمَةٌ
(They are those on whom are the Salawat from their Lord, and (they are those who) receive His mercy) are the two righteous things.
وَأُولَـئِكَ هُمُ الْمُهْتَدُونَ
(and it is they who are the guided ones) are the heights.''
The heights means more rewards, and these people will be awarded their rewards and more.
The Virtue of asserting that We all belong to Allah, during Afflictions
There are several Ahadith that mention the rewards of admitting that the return is to Allah by saying:
إِنَّا لِلَّهِ وَإِنَّـآ إِلَيْهِ رَجِعونَ
("Truly, to Allah we belong and truly, to Him we shall return.'') when afflictions strike. For instance, Imam Ahmad reported that Umm Salamah narrated: Once, Abu Salamah came back after he was with Allah's Messenger and said: I heard Allah's Messenger recite a statement that made me delighted. He said:
«لَا يُصِيبُ أَحَدًا مِنَ الْمُسْلِمِينَ مُصِيبَةٌ فَيَسْتَرْجِعُ عِنْدَ مُصِيبَتِهِ ثُمَّ يقُولُ: اللَّهُمَّ أْجُرْنِي فِي مُصِيبَتِي وأَخْلِفْ لِي خَيْرًا مِنْهَا، إِلَّا فَعَلَ ذلِكَ بِه»
(No Muslim is struck with an affliction and then says Istirja` when the affliction strikes, and then says: `O Allah! Reward me for my loss and give me what is better than it,' but Allah will do just that.) Umm Salamah said: So I memorized these words. When Abu Salamah died I said Istirja` and said: "O Allah! Compensate me for my loss and give me what is better than it.'' I then thought about it and said, "Who is better than Abu Salamah'' When my `Iddah (the period of time before the widow or divorced woman can remarry) finished, Allah's Messenger asked for permission to see me while I was dyeing a skin that I had. I washed my hands, gave him permission to enter and handed him a pillow, and he sat on it. He then asked me for marriage and when he finished his speech, I said, "O Messenger of Allah! It is not because I do not want you, but I am very jealous and I fear that you might experience some wrong mannerism from me for which Allah would punish me. I am old and have children.'' He said:
«أمَّا مَا ذَكَرْتِ مِنَ الْغَيْرَةِ فَسَوْفَ يُذْهِبُهَا اللهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ عَنْكِ، وَأَمَّا مَا ذَكَرْتِ مِنَ السِّنِّ فَقَدْ أَصَابَنِي مِثْلُ الَّذِي أَصَابَكِ، وَأَمَّا مَا ذَكَرْتِ مِنَ الْعِيَالِ فَإِنَّمَا عِيَالُكِ عِيَالِي»
(As for the jealousy that you mentioned, Allah the Exalted will remove it from you. As for your being old as you mentioned, I have suffered what you have suffered. And for your having children, they are my children too.) She said, "I have surrendered to Allah's Messenger.'' Allah's Messenger married her and Umm Salamah said later, "Allah compensated me with who is better than Abu Salamah: Allah's Messenger.'' Muslim reported a shorter version of this Hadith.
2.153-157 Maududi - Sayyid Abul Ala Maududi - Tafhim al-Qur'an
After their appointment to leadership, the Believers from hereon are given such instructions and directions as are essential for training and enabling them to discharge the duties of that position of responsibility. They are first of all warned that leadership is not a bed of roses but a bed of thorns. They will be confronted with difficulties, hardships, and trials at the very outset and will have to undergo untold sufferings and losses. But if they went Through all those ordeals with fortitude and proceeded on in the way of Allah, they would be blessed with countless blessings and rewards by Him.
That is, "Fortitude and Prayer will generate in you the power which is required to bear that burden of responsibility with which you have been entrusted. Fortitude will give you that patience and courage under the afflictions, privations and temptations which you are bound to encounter and that moral strength and endurance which will be sorely needed in Allah's way, which is full of dangers. The Prayer will train you in discipline and other moral qualities which are essential for the right type of leadership.
It is forbidden to refer to those who are martyred for Allah's sake as "dead" because the very word "death" and its thought are very discouraging, and kill the spirit of self-sacrifice and the urge to fight in the way of Allah. Instead, the Muslims are told to believe that those who fall martyrs in the way of Allah in fact enjoy eternal life. And this is a reality which revitalises and keeps alive the spirit of courage and valour.
These words are to be uttered merely with the tongue, but we whould believe sincerely from the core of our hearts that "We belong to Allah and to none else." Thus, if anything is sacrificed in the way of Allah, if is spent rightly because it has gone to His service to Whom it really belonged."
"We shall certainly return to Him" :"We shall not live here for ever but shall have to leave this world one day. Thus, sooner or later we must die and go to Allah. It is, therefore, far better to fight in His way and lay down our lives for His sake than to pass our lives in self-seeking and self-worship and then die of some disease or accident."
2.157 Qushairi - Al-Qushairi
Upon those rest blessings and mercy from their Lord and those-they are the truly guided. They attained their patience and their ability to withstand the demands of the divine decree from His prior blessings to them. It was not because of their patience or their endurance that they arrived at His blessings for if not for His pre-eternal mercy their obedience would not have arisen through the condition of servitude for His prior solicitude is what brought pure guidance to them. They are the truly guided: Because He blessed them in the beginning lammā raḥimahum fī l-bidāya they were guided in the end ihtadaw fī l-nihāya.
2.157 Tustari - Al-Tustari
They are those on whom [descend] blessings from their Lord, and mercy; it is they who are truly guided.Sahl said:What is implied by blessings (ṣalawāt) upon them is the bestowal of mercy (taraḥḥum) upon them, that is, a bestowal of mercy from their Lord. The Prophet said, ‘May God bless the family of Abū Awfāʾ, when they brought him charitable donations, by which he meant ‘[May God] have mercy on them.’ He also said:Muḥammad b. Sawwār told us on the authority of Abū ʿAmr b. ʿAlāʾ that he said: ‘Ṣalāt’ has three meanings, one of which is the prescribed prayer with its bowings and prostrations, which is referred to when God says: So pray to Your Lord and sacrifice [108:2], that is, grasp your left arm with your right hand in prayer, in self-abasement and in awe before God, Exalted is He. Thisis also reported from ʿAlī. The second meaning is to show mercy (taraḥḥum) [as discussed above], and the third meaning is supplication (duʿāʾ), as [for example] in the prayer over the dead. Indeed, the Prophet said: ‘If any of you are invited for a meal, you should [accept the invitation]. But if [the one invited] is fasting he should pray’, that is, he should make a supplicationfor them to be endowed with blessing. Furthermore, the Prophet said in a ḥadīth, ‘…and may the angels pray over you’, meaning pray for mercy to be bestowed upon you. In this [same] ḥadīth the Prophet went on to say, ‘And if someone eats at his house, the angels pray over him [the host] until eventide’, meaning the angels supplicate for him. Sahl continued:Ṣalāt carries two meanings: one is the seeking of forgiveness (istighfār), and the other is forgiveness itself (maghfira). As for the meaning of ‘seeking forgiveness’, it is referred to in His words, And pray for them [9:103], that is, ask forgiveness for them; [and in His words], to [secure] the prayers of the Messenger [9:99], meaning asking for the Messenger’s supplication for forgiveness.
As for its meaning of ‘forgiveness’, it is referred to in His words, Exalted is He, He it is who blesses you [33:43], meaning: ‘He forgives you’, and [again in His words]: as do His angels… [33:43], by which is meant: ‘They seek forgiveness for you’. In the same vein are His words: Indeed God and His angels bless the Prophet [33:56], which mean: ‘Truly God forgives the Prophet, and the angels seek forgiveness for him.’ Then He says, O you who believe, invoke blessings on him, and invoke peace on him in a worthy manner [33:56], meaning: ‘Seek forgivenessfor him’. Also in Sūrat al-Baqara are His words: Blessings from their Lord [2:157], meaning: ‘Forgiveness from their Lord.’