Tafsir Ibn Kathir- Surah 3. Al-i'Imran, Ayaat 104 To 109



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وَلْتَكُنْ مِنْكُمْ أُمَّةٌ يَدْعُونَ إِلَى الْخَيْرِ وَيَأْمُرُونَ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ وَيَنْهَوْنَ عَنِ الْمُنْكَرِ ۚ وَأُولَٰئِكَ هُمُ الْمُفْلِحُونَ١٠٤وَلَا تَكُونُوا كَالَّذِينَ تَفَرَّقُوا وَاخْتَلَفُوا مِنْ بَعْدِ مَا جَاءَهُمُ الْبَيِّنَاتُ ۚ وَأُولَٰئِكَ لَهُمْ عَذَابٌ عَظِيمٌ١٠٥يَوْمَ تَبْيَضُّ وُجُوهٌ وَتَسْوَدُّ وُجُوهٌ ۚ فَأَمَّا الَّذِينَ اسْوَدَّتْ وُجُوهُهُمْ أَكَفَرْتُمْ بَعْدَ إِيمَانِكُمْ فَذُوقُوا الْعَذَابَ بِمَا كُنْتُمْ تَكْفُرُونَ١٠٦وَأَمَّا الَّذِينَ ابْيَضَّتْ وُجُوهُهُمْ فَفِي رَحْمَةِ اللَّهِ هُمْ فِيهَا خَالِدُونَ١٠٧تِلْكَ آيَاتُ اللَّهِ نَتْلُوهَا عَلَيْكَ بِالْحَقِّ ۗ وَمَا اللَّهُ يُرِيدُ ظُلْمًا لِلْعَالَمِينَ١٠٨وَلِلَّهِ مَا فِي السَّمَاوَاتِ وَمَا فِي الْأَرْضِ ۚ وَإِلَى اللَّهِ تُرْجَعُ الْأُمُورُ١٠٩


وَللَّهِ مَا فِى السَّمَـوَتِ وَمَا فِى الاٌّرْضِ وَإِلَى اللَّهِ تُرْجَعُ الاٍّمُورُ

104.Let there arise out of you a group of people inviting to all that is good (Islam), enjoining Al-Ma`ruf (all that Islam orders) and forbidding Al-Munkar (all that Islam has forbidden). And it is they who are the successful. 105. And be not as those who divided and differed among themselves after the clear proofs had come to them. It is they for whom there is an awful torment. 106. On the Day (i.e. the Day of Resurrection) when some faces will become white and some faces will become black; as for those whose faces will become black (to them will be said): "Did you reject faith after accepting it Then taste the torment (in Hell) for rejecting faith.'' 107. And for those whose faces will become white, they will be in Allah's mercy (Paradise), therein they shall dwell forever. 108. These are the Ayat of Allah. We recite them to you in truth, and Allah wills no injustice to the `Alamin. 109. And to Allah belongs all that is in the heavens and all that is in the earth. And all matters go back (for decision) to Allah.

The Command to Establish the Invitation to Allah

 

Allah said,

 

﴿وَلْتَكُن مِّنْكُمْ أُمَّةٌ﴾

 

(Let there arise out of you a group of people)

 

that calls to righteousness, enjoins all that is good and forbids evil in the manner Allah commanded,

 

﴿وَأُوْلَـئِكَ هُمُ الْمُفْلِحُونَ﴾

 

(And it is they who are the successful.)

 

Ad-Dahhak said, "They are a special group of the Companions and a special group of those after them, that is those who perform Jihad and the scholars.''

 

The objective of this Ayah is that there should be a segment of this Muslim Ummah fulfilling this task, even though it is also an obligation on every member of this Ummah, each according to his ability. Muslim recorded that Abu Hurayrah said that the Messenger of Allah said,

 

«مَنْ رَأَى مِنْكُمْ مُنْكَرًا فَلْيُغَيِّرْهُ بِيَدِهِ، فَإِنْ لَمْ يَسْتَطِعْ فَبِلِسَانِهِ، فَإِنْ لَمْ يَسْتَطِع فَبِقَلْبِهِ، وَذلِكَ أَضْعَفُ الْإِيمَان»

 

(Whoever among you witnesses an evil, let him change it with his hand. If he is unable, then let him change it with his tongue. If he is unable, then let him change it with his heart, and this is the weakest faith.) In another narration, The Prophet said,

 

«وَلَيْسَ وَرَاءَ ذَلِكَ مِنَ الْإِيمَانِ حَبَّةُ خَرْدَل»

 

(There is no faith beyond that, not even the weight of a mustard seed.)

 

Imam Ahmad recorded that Hudhayfah bin Al-Yaman said that the Prophet said,

 

«وَالَّذِي نَفْسِي بِيَدِه، لَتَأْمُرُنَّ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ، وَلَتَنْهَوُنَّ عَنِ الْمُنْكَرِ، أَوْ لَيُوشِكَنَّ اللهُ أَنْ يَبْعَثَ عَلَيْكُمْ عِقَابًا مِنْ عِنْدِهِ، ثُمَّ لتَدْعُنَّــهُ فَلَا يَسْتَجِيبَ لَكُم»

 

(By He in Whose Hand is my soul! You will enjoin righteousness and forbid evil, or Allah shall send down a punishment from Him to you. Then, you will supplicate to Him, but He will not accept your supplication.)

 

At-Tirmidhi also collected this Hadith and said, "Hasan''. There are many other Hadiths and Ayat on this subject, which will be explained later.

 

The Prohibition of Division

 

Allah said,

 

﴿وَلاَ تَكُونُواْ كَالَّذِينَ تَفَرَّقُواْ وَاخْتَلَفُواْ مِن بَعْدِ مَا جَآءَهُمُ الْبَيِّنَـتُ﴾

 

(And be not as those who divided and differed among themselves after the clear proofs had come to them) ﴿3:105﴾.

 

In this Ayah, Allah forbids this Ummah from imitating the division and discord of the nations that came before them. These nations also abandoned enjoining righteousness and forbidding evil, although they had proof of its necessity.

 

Imam Ahmad recorded that Abu `Amir `Abdullah bin Luhay said, "We performed Hajj with Mu`awiyah bin Abi Sufyan. When we arrived at Makkah, he stood up after praying Zuhr and said, `The Messenger of Allah said,

 

«إِنَّ أَهْلَ الْكِتَابَيْنِ افْتَرَقُوا فِي دِينِهِمْ عَلى ثِنْتَيْنِ وَسَبْعِينَ مِلَّةً، وَإِنَّ هذِهِ الْأُمَّةَ سَتَفْتَرِقُ عَلى ثَلَاثٍ وَسَبْعِينَ مِلَّةً يَعْنِي الْأَهْوَاءَ كُلُّهَا فِي النَّارِ إِلَّا وَاحِدَةً وَهِيَ الْجَمَاعَةُ وَإِنَّهُ سَيَخْرُجُ فِي أُمَّتِي أَقْوَامٌ تَجَارَى بِهِمْ تِلْكَ الْأَهْوَاءُ كَمَا يَتَجَارَى الْكَلَبُ بِصَاحِبِه، لَا يَبْقَى مِنْهُ عِرْقٌ وَلَا مَفْصِلٌ إِلَّا دَخَلَه»

 

(The People of the Two Scriptures divided into seventy-two sects. This Ummah will divide into seventy-three sects, all in the Fire except one, that is, the Jama`ah. Some of my Ummah will be guided by desire, like one who is infected by rabies; no vein or joint will be saved from these desires.)

 

﴿Mu`awiyah said next:﴾ By Allah, O Arabs! If you do not adhere to what came to you from your Prophet then other people are even more prone not to adhere to it. '' Similar was recorded by Abu Dawud from Ahmad bin Hanbal and Muhammad bin Yahya.

 

The Benefits of Brotherly Ties and Unity and the Consequence of Division on the Day of the Gatherin

Allah said next,

﴿يَوْمَ تَبْيَضُّ وُجُوهٌ وَتَسْوَدُّ وُجُوهٌ﴾

(On the Day when some faces will become white and some faces will become black;) ﴿3:106﴾ on the Day of Resurrection. This is when the faces of followers of the Sunnah and the Jama`ah will radiate with whiteness, and the faces of followers of Bid`ah (innovation) and division will be darkened, as has been reported from Ibn `Abbas. Allah said,

﴿فَأَمَّا الَّذِينَ اسْوَدَّتْ وُجُوهُهُمْ أَكْفَرْتُمْ بَعْدَ إِيمَـنِكُمْ﴾

(As for those whose faces will become black (to them will be said): "Did you reject faith after accepting it")

Al-Hasan Al-Basri said, "They are the hypocrites.''

﴿فَذُوقُواْ الْعَذَابَ بِمَا كُنْتُمْ تَكْفُرُونَ﴾

(Then taste the torment (in Hell) for rejecting faith,) and this description befits every disbeliever.

﴿وَأَمَّا الَّذِينَ ابْيَضَّتْ وُجُوهُهُمْ فَفِى رَحْمَةِ اللَّهِ هُمْ فِيهَا خَـلِدُونَ ﴾

(And for those whose faces will become white, they will be in Allah's mercy (Paradise), therein they shall dwell forever.) in Paradise, where they will reside for eternity and shall never desire to be removed. Abu `Isa At-Tirmidhi recorded that Abu Ghalib said, "Abu Umamah saw heads (of the Khawarij sect) hanging on the streets of Damascus. He commented, `The Dogs of the Fire and the worst dead people under the cover of the sky. The best dead men are those whom these have killed.' He then recited,

﴿يَوْمَ تَبْيَضُّ وُجُوهٌ وَتَسْوَدُّ وُجُوهٌ﴾

(On the Day (i.e. the Day of Resurrection) when some faces will become white and some faces will become black;) until the end of the Ayah. I said to Abu Umamah, `Did you hear this from the Messenger of Allah' He said, `If I only heard it from the Messenger of Allah once, twice, thrice, four times, or seven times, I would not have narrated it to you.' '' At-Tirmidhi said, "This Hadith is Hasan.'' Ibn Majah and Ahmad recorded similarly.

Allah said,

﴿تِلْكَ آيَـتُ اللَّهِ نَتْلُوهَا عَلَيْكَ﴾

(These are the Ayat of Allah. We recite them to you) meaning, `These are the verses of Allah, His proofs and signs that We reveal to you, O Muhammad,'

﴿بِالْحَقِّ﴾

(in truth) making known the true reality of this world and the Hereafter.

﴿وَمَا اللَّهُ يُرِيدُ ظُلْماً لِّلْعَـلَمِينَ﴾

(and Allah wills no injustice to the `Alamin. ) for He never treats them with injustice. Rather, He is the Just Ruler Who is able to do everything and has knowledge of everything. Therefore, He does not need to treat any of His creatures with injustice, and this is why He said next,

﴿وَللَّهِ مَا فِى السَّمَـوَتِ وَمَا فِى الاٌّرْضِ﴾

(and to Allah belongs all that is in the heavens and all that is in the Earth.),

they are all His servants and His property,

﴿وَإِلَى اللَّهِ تُرْجَعُ الأُمُورُ﴾

(And all matters go back to Allah,) for His is the decision concerning the affairs of this life and the Hereafter, and His is the Supreme Authority in this life and the Hereafter.

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