Section 10 : Jonah's People Commentary : Verse 93

The Israeties lodged in a goodly place Jonah's people benefited by the warning No soul is guided aright but by Allah's permission Safety of the believers undertaken by Allah Himself

(93) وَ لَقَدْ بَوَّأْنا بَني‏ إِسْرائيلَ مُبَوَّأَ صِدْقٍ وَ رَزَقْناهُمْ مِنَ الطَّيِّباتِ فَمَا اخْتَلَفُوا حَتَّى جاءَهُمُ الْعِلْمُ إِنَّ رَبَّكَ يَقْضي‏ بَيْنَهُمْ يَوْمَ الْقِيامَةِ فيما كانُوا فيهِ يَخْتَلِفُونَ

  1. " And certainly We lodged the Children of Israel a goodly lodging, and provided them with good things, so they did not differ but after the knowledge came to them, Verily your Lord will judge between them on the Day of Judgment concerning that in which they used to differ. "

Commentary :

The ultimate victory of the Children of Israel and their eventual return to the Holy Land after their liberation from the men of Pharaoh, are explained in this verse as follows:

" And certainly We lodged the Children of Israel a goodly lodging, "

The objective meaning of the phrase/ mubawwa'a s idqin/(a goodly lodging)can be considered as alluding to the land of Egypt or the lands of Syria and Palestine.

Then the Qur'an adds that Allah provided them with the good things to eat but they did not appreciate the real value of this blessing. Contrarily, they sowed the seeds of discord and quarreled with each other, and this they did not until the knowledge was made available to them. The verse says:

" and provided them with good things, so they did not differ but after the knowledge came to them, "

Eventually, Allah will arbitrate among them as to what they disagreed upon on the Day of Resurrection. If they do not experience the punishment for their discord today, they will experience it in the future. The verse continues saying:

" Verily your Lord will judge between them on the Day of Judgment concerning that in which they used to differ. "

Commentary : Verse 94

(94) فَإِنْ كُنْتَ في‏ شَكٍّ مِمَّا أَنْزَلْنا إِلَيْكَ فَسْئَلِ الَّذينَ يَقْرَؤُنَ الْكِتابَ مِنْ قَبْلِكَ لَقَدْ جاءَكَ الْحَقُّ مِنْ رَبِّكَ فَلا تَكُونَنَّ مِنَ المُمْتَرينَ

  1. " So if you are in doubt as to what We have revealed unto you, then ask those who read the book(sent)before you. The Truth hath indeed come to you from your Lord, so be not of the doubters. "

Commentary :

How is it that the Qur'an implies: O! Prophet, if you have any doubts about the Qur'an, ask the People of the Book, despite the fact that he(p.b.u.h.) had never had any shadow of a doubt in this respect Reason does not admit that a prophet might doubt the revelation sent to him. However, its meaning can be gathered in the same Sura, verse 401. Here Allah, the Exalted, has addressed the Prophet(p.b.u.h.) while this meaning addresses the whole people. The implication of it is that if the people are hesitating, they must ask those who have read the Qur'an.

To support this argument, there is a verse at the end of the current Sura in which Allah, the Gracious, addressing the people from the tongue of the Prophet(p.b.u.h.) , says: "O you people if you are in doubt as to my religion. " With this verse, Allah, the Gracious, made it transparent that the Prophet(p.b.u.h.) had not been skeptical and His objective in addressing the Prophet(p.b.u.h.) is really intended for other people. Likewise, there are other verses that apparently address the Prophet(p.b.u.h.) although, in reality, the addressees are people other than the Prophet(p.b.u.h.) as well. The verse says:

" So if you are in doubt as to what We have revealed unto you, then ask those who read the book(sent)before you. "

Incidentally, some of the great commentators of the Qur'an have stated that this doubt is of the type which is based upon supposition and probability and not upon certainty and through defining rules, like the verse which says: "If the Beneficent(Allah)had a son, "(1) Although the verse, "He begets not, nor is He begotten ", categorically rules out the issue of Allah having a child. This proposition is in fact a conditional proposition. That is, were you to have the slightest doubt in this respect, you should ask those knowledgeable People of the Book, because they are sure that you tell the Truth.

Imam Sadiq(a.s.)is narrated who said that Had rat Muhammad(p.b.u.h.) never doubted and never asked the People of the Book.

And finally, besides the explanation offered in the above, the verse demonstrates the fact that the reasons for the appointment of the Prophet(p.b.u.h.) and whatever is revealed to him are not confined to his call to prophecy and his offering of miracles. There are allusions made to him in the Books of the preceding prophets and though those books are misrepresented and their authenticity questionable, there are numerous tidings here and there, amounting to sixty cases which are available to the People of the Book.

The holy sentence which says: "... The Truth has indeed come to you from your Lord, ..." signifies: by means of the revelations and exhaustive proofs it has been proved to you

(1) Sura Al- Zukhruf, No. 43, verse 81

that what has been passed to you is an authentic and genuine truth which leaves no room for any sort of skepticism. Thus, be firm in your beliefs in which case you should have no doubts, not refuting and denying the Divine verses, and continue your course. The verse continues saying:

"... The Truth hath indeed come to you from your Lord, so be not of the doubters. "

Commentary : Verse 95

(95) وَ لا تَكُونَنَّ مِنَ الَّذينَ كَذَّبُوا بِآياتِ اللَّهِ فَتَكُونَ مِنَ الْخاسِرينَ

  1. " Nor be of those who belied the Signs of Allah,(for)then you shall be of the losers. "

Commentary :

The previous holy verse advised against maintaining any skepticism about the Qur'an. This noble verse addresses itself to refutation of the verses.

Many a time if skepticism remains unchallenged, it will lead to refutation. The verse says:

" Nor be of those who belied the Signs of Allah,(for)then you shall be of the losers. "

All investigation and analysis that had been applied to skepticism in the previous verse, may equally propound here as well, for refutation is worse than skepticism. There have been numerous verses and traditions which inform of the certainty the Prophet(p.b.u.h.) possessed. Therefore, the target and the addressees of such warnings are mankind, and not the Prophet(p.b.u.h.) in person. How can someone, who has led others to believe in something with certainty, be himself a skeptic, or refute that same thing ?

Commentary : Verse 96

(96) إِنَّ الَّذينَ حَقَّتْ عَلَيْهِمْ كَلِمَتُ رَبِّكَ لا يُؤْمِنُونَ

(97) وَ لَوْ جاءَتْهُمْ كُلُّ آيَةٍ حَتَّى يَرَوُا الْعَذابَ الْأَليمَ

  1. " Verily those against whom the Word of your Lord has proved true will not believe, "

  2. " Even if every Sign come unto them, until they see the painful chastisement. "

Commentary :

Allah tells the Prophet(p.b.u.h.) , here, that there is a group among his opponents who are fanatic and obstinate and who cannot be expected to become believers. They have become so brainwashed in their thinking, and have been led astray to such an extent that they have lost their human consciences, becoming individuals who may not be impressed or influenced. However, explaining the subject with this connotation, the Qur'an says that Allah's commandment had been proven and was unequivocal to them, though they will not become believers. The verse says:

" Verily those against whom the Word of your Lord has proved true will not believe, "

Even if all Allah's verses and symbols had dawned upon them, they would not become believers unless they witnessed the Divine Punishment with their own eyes, at which time, their faith would be of no avail.

The verse says:

" Even if every Sign come unto them, until they see the painful chastisement. "