The Quran

Commentaries for 2.257

Al Baqara (The cow) - البقرة

2.257 Abbas - Tanwîr al-Miqbâs min Tafsîr Ibn ‘Abbâs
(Allah is the Protecting Friend of those who believe) He protects and gives victory to the believers, referring here to 'Abdullah Ibn Salam and his companions. (He bringeth them out of darkness into light) He gave them success and brought them out of disbelief into faith. (As for those who disbelieve) i.e. Ka'b Ibn al-Ashraf and his companions, (their patrons are false deities) the devil. (They bring them out of light into darkness) they invite them from faith to disbelief. (Such are rightful owners of the Fire) the dwellers of hell. (They will abide therein forever) never to die or leave it.
2.257 Asrar - Kashf Al-Asrar
God is the friend of those who have faith.
Their friend [walī], their patron [mawlā], their ruler [wālī], and their caretaker [mutawallī]-all are alike in meaning. He is saying, " God is the lord of the faithful, their caretaker and helper, their guide and open-hearted friend. "
In a report it has come that God's Messenger said, " If someone were to destroy the eminent, great Kaabah, take apart its stones, and set it on fire, his disobedience would not be as much as if he were to denigrate one of God's friends. "
A nomad was present. He said, " O Messenger of God! Who are these friends of God? "
He replied, " All of the faithful are God's beloved friends. Have you not recited the verse, 'God is the friend of those who have faith?' "
The equal of this verse is where He says, " That is because God is the patron of those who have
faith, and the unbelievers have no patron " [47:11]. He is the friend and caretaker of the faithful, not only in this world, but also in the next, as He says: " We are your friends in this world's life and in the next world " [41:31].
In the story of Joseph, He quotes his words, " Thou art my friend in this world and the next " [12:101]. There is a great difference between these two verses-We are your friends and Thou art my friend-though anyone who does not have the eyes to see is excused. We are your friends comes from togetherness itself, but Thou art my friend alludes to dispersion. This is not because the friend is superior to the prophet, for the end of the friend's work is but the beginning of the prophet's work. However, the weak are shown greater benevolence, and the incapable are given more caresses, for they are not so bold as to claim familiarity. They see themselves as tainted, so they do not have the tongue to speak. Whoever is more helpless is closer to the Friend. Whoever is more broken is more worthy of love: " I am with those whose hearts are broken for Me. "
It has been reported that on the Day of Resurrection, one of the broken and burnt will be taken to the Presence.
God will say, " My servant, what do you have? "
He will say, " Two empty hands, a heart full of pain, and a spirit troubled and bewildered in the waves of grief and sorrow. "
He will say, " Go straight ahead to the house of My friends, for I love the broken and grieving. 'The sinner's sobs are more beloved to Me than the glorifier's murmur.' "
I said, " What can I offer Your tresses
if You come close to Your servant? " I'll offer this miserable burnt liver-
burnt liver has a use for musk. "
David said, " O God, I take it that I must wash my limbs with water so that they may be pure of defilement. With what shall I wash my heart so that it may be pure of other than You? "
The command came, " O David! Wash the heart with the water of regret and grief so that you may reach the greatest purity. "
He said, " O God, where can I find this grief? "
He said, " We Ourselves will send the grief. The stipulation is that you bind yourself to the grieving and the broken. "
He said, " O God, what is their mark? "
He said, " They wait all day for the sun to go down, then they pull down the curtain of night and begin to knock at the door of the isolated cell of We are nearer [50:16]. Burning, weeping, and sighing all night long, needy and melting, their heads on the ground, they call on Us with longing voice: 'O Lord, O Lord!' With the tongue of their state they say,
" Let the night of separation pull the bow, let the day shoot its arrow like ārash.
On the night I'm happy with You, O idol,
you'd say that night has put its foot in the fire. "
From the world's Compeller comes the call, " O Gabriel and Michael! Leave aside the murmur of glorification, for here comes the sound of someone burning. Though he has the burden of disobedience, he has the tree of faith in his heart. He was kneaded with the water and clay of love for Me. " The proximate angels, from the day they came into existence until the Day of Resurrection, have kept their hands on the belt of serving Me.
They place My command on their eyes and burn in hope for one glance. Then they put the fingers of longing in the mouth of bewilderment-'What is this? We do the service, but the love goes there. We run and rush, but arrival and seeing are theirs!' "
The Exalted Unity answers them in the attribute of predetermination: " The work is done by burning and grief. They are the source of burning and the quarry of grief. "
Without the perfection of burning pain, don't mention religion's name.
Without the beauty of yearning for union, don't lean on faith.
To the Beloved's spirit-catching, curling tresses on the day of union sacrifice only your wretched, bleeding heart!
2.257 Jalal - Al-Jalalayn
God is the Protector, helper, of the believers; He brings them forth from the shadows, of unbelief, into the light, of faith. And the disbelievers — their protectors are false deities, that bring them forth from the light into the shadows: the repetition of ‘bringing forth from’ here is either to be taken as a reflection of His [previous] words, “He brings them forth from the shadows”, or as a reference to all those Jews who believed in the Prophet before he was sent, but then rejected him, those are the inhabitants of the Fire, therein they shall abide.
2.257 Kashani - Kashani
God is the Protector of the believers, taking charge of their affairs and their love [for Him]. He brings them forth from, the shadows of the attributes of the soul and the ambiguities (shubuhāt) of the imagination and estimation into the light of certainty and guidance and [into] the space of the world of spirits. And the disbelievers - their protectors are, those whom they worship besides God, that bring them forth, from the light of preparedness and the guidance inherent in the primordial nature into the shadows of the attributes of the soul and [into] uncertainties and doubts.
2.257 Kathir - Ibn Al Kathir
Allah stated that whoever follows what pleases Him, He will guide him to the paths of peace, that is Islam, or Paradise. Verily, Allah delivers His believing servants from the darkness of disbelief, doubt and hesitation, to the light of the plain, clear, explained, easy and unequivocal truth. He also stated that Shaytan is the supporter of the disbelievers who beautifies the paths of ignorance and misguidance that they follow, thus causing them to deviate from the true path into disbelief and wickedness.
أُولَـئِكَ أَصْحَـبُ النَّارِ هُمْ فِيهَا خَـلِدُونَ
(Those are the dwellers of the Fire, and they will abide therein forever.)
This is why Allah mentioned the light in the singular while mentioned the darkness in the plural, because truth is one, while disbelief comes as several types, all of which are false. Similarly, Allah said,
وَأَنَّ هَـذَا صِرَطِي مُسْتَقِيمًا فَاتَّبِعُوهُ وَلاَ تَتَّبِعُواْ السُّبُلَ فَتَفَرَّقَ بِكُمْ عَن سَبِيلِهِ ذَلِكُمْ وَصَّـكُمْ بِهِ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَتَّقُونَ
(And verily, this is my straight path, so follow it, and follow not (other) paths, for they will separate you away from His path. This He has ordained for you that you may have Taqwa) 6:153,
وَجَعَلَ الظُّلُمَـتِ وَالنُّورَ
(And originated the darknesses and the light) 6:1, and,
ظِلَـلُهُ عَنِ الْيَمِينِ
(to the right and to the lefts) 16: 48
There are many other Ayat on the subject that mention the truth in the singular and falsehood in the plural, because of falsehood's many divisions and branches.
2.256-257 Maududi - Sayyid Abul Ala Maududi - Tafhim al-Qur'an
The word "din" implies the concept about Allah as stated in the Ayat al-Kursi above as well as the entire way of life built on it. The verse means that the creed of Islam and its way of life cannot be thrust upon anyone forcibly. As a matter of fact, this cannot be forced upon anyone.
The word taghut literally applies to everyone who transgresses the limits. The Qur'an uses this word for one who rebels against Allah and claims himself to be the master and sovereign of His servants and forces them to become his servants.
Man's rebellion against Allah has three degrees of criminality: (1) One is fasiq (disobedient) if one professes to be His subject but practically acts against His commandments; (2) One is kafir (disbeliever) if one becomes independent of Him or owes allegiance to someone else; (3) One is taghut if one rebels against Allah and exerts to make His subjects subservient to himself. Such a one may be Satan or a priest or a religious or a political leader or a king or a state. Therefore no one can be a true believer of Allah unless he disowns taghut.
"Darkness" stands for the darkness of ignorance that causes one to go astray from the Right Way, and to spend all one's efforts and energies in wrong way. In contrast to this, "light" stands for the light of the Truth which enables one to see clearly the Reality and perceive the real aim of life and follow consciously and deliberately the Right Way.
Though taghut is singular in form, here it is plural in meaning, for the one who rejects Allah becomes a slave not of one but of several forms of taghut, One of these is Satan who goes on tempting him with many false and alluring temptations. Another is his own self that makes him a slave of passions and lusts and misleads him into crooked ways. Then there are others, his wife and children, his kith and kin, his clan and family, his friends and nation, his political and religious leaders and his government. All these are taghut for him and desire to make him a slave of their wishes and ambitions. And this slave of all these masters wastes his whole life in trying to accomplish the impossible feat of pleasing each and every one of them.
2.257 Qushairi - Al-Qushairi
God is the Protector walī of the believers; [He is] the Protector walī in the sense of the One who takes charge of their affairs mutawallī and the One who is unique in settling their concerns. The faʿīl pattern of the word walī can [also] be understood in the passive maf ʿūl-the believers are charged yatawallawna with obeying Him. Both [usages of the word] are correct. The first [way of understanding the word walī] is a gathering and the second is a separation. Not every gathering will be limited by a separation and not every separation will be supported by a gathering. That is an error and the one who makes it is wrong. The verse bears both of the meanings. He brings them forth from the shadows into the light. This means that by His beginningless decree He protected them from the shadows which are errors and [blameworthy] innovation for they were never in the shadows in His prior knowledge. And the disbelievers-their protectors are false deities [False deities] that entice them with calls to disbelief. that bring them forth from the light into the shadows; those are the inhabitants of the fire therein they shall abide. Through the doubt that overwhelmed their hearts they denied the lordship. They are those who remain forever apart from the Real. It is said He brings them forth from the shadows of their self-direction tadbīr to the spaciousness of witnessing His determination taqdīr of events. It is said that He brings them forth from the shadows of their thinking that they have any independent means or access to Him in anything they do or do not do. It is said that He brings them forth from the shadows by lifting the shade of their lower selves from them and bringing them into the shade of His solicitude. It is said that He delivers them from paying any heed to their own salvation. It is said that He comes between them and their reliance on their actions and dependence on their states.
2.257 Tustari - Al-Tustari
God is the protector of the believers…Concerning these words Sahl said:That is, [He protects them with] the protection of [His] good pleasure (riḍā). He is their protectordue to the former guidance He granted them, and His knowledge concerning them, of their affirmation of His oneness. This is due to His knowledge that they have freed themselves from every cause except their Creator. Hence they were taken out of the darkness into the light, and from disbelief, error, disobedience and innovation to faith, which is the light that God, Mighty and Majestic is He, established in their hearts. This is the light of the insight of certainty (nūr baṣīrat al-yaqīn) by which they seek inner perception of the divine oneness (tawḥīd), and obedience to Him in that which He has commanded and forbidden. For anyone to whom God gives no light, there is no light! [24:40]His words, Mighty and Majestic is He:
And the disbelievers — their protectors are false deities…That is, Satan.Sahl said:The head of all devils is the evil-inciting self (nafs ammāra bi’l-sūʾ), for Satan cannot overpower man except through the desire (hawā) of his lower self. So if he [Satan] senses something that it desires, he casts temptation at it.