An Earnest Invitation unto Justice:
This verse invites to estalishment of justice. At first, it addresses the believers and says:
" O' you who have Faith! be always uprite for Allah, bearers of witness with justice, ..."
After that, the verse points to one of the factors of deviation from justice, and warns Muslims as such that tribal hatreds and hostilities, or personal accounts, should not stand as a barrier in the way of the execution of justice and should not cause transgression over the rights of others, because justice is something beyond all of them. It says:
"...and let not hatred of a people incite you not to act equitably...
For the importance of the matter, it emphasizes on the subject of justice once more, and says:
"...Act equitably, that is nearer to piety, ..."
And, since justice is the most important element of piety and righteousness, for the third time, it adds as an emphasis that:
"... verily Allah is Aware of what you do."
(9) وَعَدَ اللّهُ الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ وَعَمِلُواْ الصَّالِحَاتِ لَهُم مَّغْفِرَةٌ وَأَجْرٌ عَظِيمٌ
(10) وَالَّذِينَ كَفَرُواْ وَكَذَّبُواْ بِآيَاتِنَا أُوْلَئِكَ أَصْحَابُ الْجَحِيمِ
9. " Allah has promised those who believe and do good deeds that they will have forgiveness and a great reward.
10. And (as for) those who disbelieve and deny Our Signs (revelations), these are the companions of Hell.
Allah's way of treatment is such that, in the Qur'an, next to the statement of some particular commandments, in order to emphasize and complete them, He points to some general laws and principals. So, here, in verse nine to emphasize on the subject of the excecution of justice and rightfully bearing witness, it says:
Allah has promised those who believe and do good deeds that they will have forgiveness and a great reward.
In contrast with the above-mentioned group, there are those who reject Allah and deny His Signs, i.e. the verses of the Qur'an. Such people will be in Hell. It says:
" And (as for) those who disbelieve and deny Our Signs (revelations), these are the companions of Hell."
It is worthy of attention that the phrases: ' forgiveness ' and ' a great reward ' are referred to in the verse as a promise of Allah (s.w.t.) where it says: " Allah has promised ...", while the ' retribution of Hell ' has been mentioned as a result of ' deeds '.
The verse implies that those who have deeds such as so and so, will have a fate so and so. In fact, this meaning is a hint to the grace and favour of Allah regarding the rewards in the Hereafter which will never be paralleled with the insignificant deeds of the mortals in this world. Also, the chastisements in the coming world have no aspect of vengeance, but they are the fruit of the evil deeds of human beings in the present world.
(11) يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ اذْكُرُواْ نِعْمَتَ اللّهِ عَلَيْكُمْ إِذْ هَمَّ قَوْمٌ أَن يَبْسُطُواْ إِلَيْكُمْ أَيْدِيَهُمْ فَكَفَّ أَيْدِيَهُمْ عَنكُمْ وَاتَّقُواْ اللّهَ وَعَلَى اللّهِ فَلْيَتَوَكَّلِ الْمُؤْمِنُونَ
11. O' you who have Faith! remember Allah's favour on you when a (hostile) people were minded to stretch against you their hands, but He withheld their hands from you; and be in awe of Allah, and on Allah let the believers rely.
The opinions are divided that which happening this verse was revealed for. Yet, it can be considered for all the instances that Muslims have relied on Allah and have victoriously rescued when confronting the evil attempt or attack of the enemy.
Still, the remembrance of the bounties of Allah (s.w.t.) is a kind of thankgiving. It takes away pride and negligence from man and increases his love to the Lord.
" O' you who have Faith! remember Allah's favour on you when a (hostile) people were minded to stretch against you their hands, but He withheld their hands from you; and be in awe of Allah, and on Allah let the believers rely."
1- Repelling the harms of the enemy is among the most important favours of Allah.
2- Absorb the grace of Allah to yourself and repel the harm of the enemy through piety, Faith and relying on Him. (Similar to the condition that Allah leaves the enemy to prodominate over persons, because of their committing sins, the same is to attentive to Him that causes the harms of enemies to be removed.)
(12) وَلَقَدْ أَخَذَ اللّهُ مِيثَاقَ بَنِي إِسْرَآئِيلَ وَبَعَثْنَا مِنهُمُ اثْنَيْ عَشَرَ نَقِيبًا وَقَالَ اللّهُ إِنِّي مَعَكُمْ لَئِنْ أَقَمْتُمُ الصّلوةَ وَآتَيْتُمُ الزَّكَوةَ وَآمَنتُم بِرُسُلِي وَعَزَّرْتُمُوهُمْ وَأَقْرَضْتُمُ اللّهَ قَرْضًا حَسَنًا لَّأُكَفِّرَنَّ عَنكُمْ سَيِّئَاتِكُمْ وَلأُدْخِلَنَّكُمْ جَنَّاتٍ تَجْرِي مِن تَحْتِهَا الأَنْهَارُ فَمَن كَفَرَ بَعْدَ ذَلِكَ مِنكُمْ فَقَدْ ضَلَّ سَوَاء السَّبِيلِ
The covenants with the jews and the christians
The covenants with the jews - The covenants with the christians - The actual position of Jesus
12. " And certainly Allah made a covenant with the Children of Israel, and We raised among them twelve chiftains, and Allah said: ' Verily I am with you, if you keep up prayer and pay the poor-rate and believe in My messengers and assist them and lend Allah a kindly loan, I will most certainly cover your evil deeds and I will certainly cause you to enter Gardens beneath which rivers flow; but whoever among you disbelieves after that, has indeed strayed from the right path.
The chiefs of the Israelites were twelve persons. The ministers of Moses (a.s.) and the custodians of the tuelve tribes were from among them. It is narrated from the Messenger of Allah (p.b.u.h.) who, in a tradition, said: " The vicegerents after me are twelve. They are as many as the chiefs of the Israelites " (1) The attempt of the opponents of Ahlul-Bayt (a.s.) is in vain when they try to adapt this figure to Orthodox Caliphs, Umayyid Caliphs, and the Caliphs of Abbasids, though it adapts to neither of them. There are, of course, many traditions recorded which denote that the Prophet himself (p.b.u.h.) mentioned the names of these twelve persons. According to his statement recorded in a tradition (2) the first of them is Ali-ibn-Abitalib and their last one is Hadrat Mahdi (May Allah hasten his auspicious advent).
The Arabic phrase: /'azzartumuhum/ is derived from the word /'azzara/ which means: to assist with honour '. Therefore, the Arabic term /ta'zir/ refers to a kind of assistance to the sinner in abandoning the crime. That is why that Islamic punishments have the function of education rather than vengeance.
The Qur'anic phrase /sawa'-us-sabil/ means the middle way that swerving from which is going towards aberration and fall.
1- Allah is with us when we observe some conditions including: prayers, poor-rate, belief in Trugh, assisting prophets, and giving charity. So, if we leave them, the Grace of Allah will be ceased.
2- Prayer, poor-rate, and charity have existed in all the Divine religions. However, performing obligations alone is not enough, but following the totality of obligatory and recommended deeds, without approaching the prohibited things, is effective.
3- Prayer, poor-rate, and charity are meaningful when they are accompanied with leadership and mastership - with the acceptance of mastership of the whole prophets, not a part of them.
4- There is no room for the sinners in Heaven. Purification is first, and then being admitted to enter into it.
5- The only way to the forgiveness of Allah, is Faith and righteous deeds.
(1) Musnd Imam Ahmad-ibn-Hunbal, vol. 1, p. 398 and many other books
(2) Yanabi'-ul-Mawaddah. p. 117
(13) فَبِمَا نَقْضِهِم مِّيثَاقَهُمْ لَعنَّاهُمْ وَجَعَلْنَا قُلُوبَهُمْ قَاسِيَةً يُحَرِّفُونَ الْكَلِمَ عَن مَّوَاضِعِهِ وَنَسُواْ حَظًّا مِّمَّا ذُكِّرُواْ بِهِ وَلاَ تَزَالُ تَطَّلِعُ عَلَىَ خَآئِنَةٍ مِّنْهُمْ إِلاَّ قَلِيلاً مِّنْهُمُ فَاعْفُ عَنْهُمْ وَ اصْفَحْ إِنَّ اللّهَ يُحِبُّ الْمُحْسِنِينَ
13. " So, for their breaking their covenant, We cursed them and made their hearts hard. They alter the words (of Allah) from their places and they have neglected a part of what they were admonished with, and you shall always discover treachery in them save a few of them. Yet forgive them and overlook (their misdeeds); verily Allah loves the good-doers."
In the first verse of this Sura, the fulfilment of contracts was referred to. In the previous verse, the covenant of Allah (s.w.t.) with the Israelites, and the heedlessness of those people unto the Divine covenant, was pointed out. In the current verse, the effects of breaching promise is stated. Therefore, this Sura has been entitled ' the covenant ' too. However, the contents of the verses, as a whole, also warn about a great breach of promise.
Breach of promise causes deprivation from Allah's grace.(1) It is also an origine of the appearance of hard-heartedness in persons.
The Israelites have always been treacherous. They used to pervert the religion of Allah, therefore, they encontered with punishment. The verse says:
" So, for their breaking their covenant, We cursed them and made their hearts hard. They alter the words (of Allah) from their places and they have neglected a part of what they were admonished with, and you shall always discover treachery in them save a few of them. Yet forgive them and overlook (their misdeeds); verily Allah loves the good-doers."
(1) Sura At-Taubah, No.9, verse 77 denotes that breach of promise consequences to hypocrisy
(14) وَمِنَ الَّذِينَ قَالُواْ إِنَّا نَصَارَى أَخَذْنَا مِيثَاقَهُمْ فَنَسُواْ حَظًّا مِّمَّا ذُكِّرُواْ بِهِ فَأَغْرَيْنَا بَيْنَهُمُ الْعَدَاوَةَ وَالْبَغْضَاء إِلَى يَوْمِ الْقِيَامَةِ وَسَوْفَ يُنَبِّئُهُمُ اللّهُ بِمَا كَانُواْ يَصْنَعُونَ
14. " And of those who say: ' We are Christians ' We did take their covenant, but they (also like Israelites) have neglected a part of what they were admonished with. Therefore We have stirred up among them enmity and hatred till the Day of Resurrection; and soon Allah will inform them of what they have been doing."
In the previous verse, the words were about the breach of promise among the Children of Israel. Now, in this verse, the statement is upon the preach of promise among the Christians. That verse introduced almost all the Israelites as breachers of promise, (except a few of them). But, in this verse, from the beginning, it separates a part of the Christians as breachers of promise when it says:
" ... of those who say: ' We are Christians' ..."
This shows that the number of the deluded people among the Jews is larger than those among the Christians.
" And of those who say: ' We are Christians ' We did take their covenant, but they (also like Israelites) have neglected a part of what they were admonished with. Therefore We have stirred up among them enmity and hatred till the Day of Resurrection; and soon Allah will inform them of what they have been doing."
The Qur'anic term /nasara/ (Christians), mentined in this holy verse, is the plural form of the word /nasrani/, and, therein, the Christians are entitled /nasara/ since the helpers and companions of Jesus (a.s.) used to say:
"...We are helpers (in the cause) of Allah. ..." (1)
Therefore, we must take an example by the bitter results emerged from breach of promise that other people had suffered. The verse indicates that Allah took covenant from the Christians, but since they neglected it they encontered the infliction of Ahzab.
(1) Sura As-Saff, No. 61, verse 14
(15) يَا أَهْلَ الْكِتَابِ قَدْ جَاءكُمْ رَسُولُنَا يُبَيِّنُ لَكُمْ كَثِيرًا مِّمَّا كُنتُمْ تُخْفُونَ مِنَ الْكِتَابِ وَيَعْفُو عَن كَثِيرٍ قَدْ جَاءكُم مِّنَ اللّهِ نُورٌ وَكِتَابٌ مُّبِينٌ
15. " O' People of the Book! Indeed Our Messenger has come to you expounding to you much of what you have been hiding of the Book, and overlooking much. Indeed there has come to you, from Allah, a Light and a clear Book."
Islam is a world-wide religion which invites the followers of all religions to the Truth and to itself.
Islam is the most simple and the most conciliable religion among all religions.
Hence, do take care not to be dispair of guiding and inviting people towards the Truth, and do invite the People of the Book either, though they are breachers of promise.
The manifestation of the concealed matters is a sign of knowledge of hidden things, and it is also one of the ways of knowing the holy Prophet (p.b.u.h.).
" O' People of the Book! Indeed Our Messenger has come to you expounding to you much of what you have been hiding of the Book, and overlooking much. ..."
However, the world of humanity with the absense of the Qur'an is dark.