The second juz’ of the Qur’an starts from ayah 142 of Surah Al-Baqarah and continues to ayah 252.
Period of Revelation
Surah Al-Baqarah was revealed in its entirety in Madinah. It was one of the first Surahs to be revealed there.
From the Virtues of Surah Al Baqarah
The Messeneger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said:
“Read the Qur’an, because it will intercede on behalf of its people on the Day of Resurrection. Read the two lights, Al-Baqarah and Al Imran, because they will come in the shape of two clouds, two shades or two lines of birds on the Day of Resurrection and will argue on behalf of their people on that Day.”
Then the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said:
“Read Al-Baqarah, because in having it there is blessings, and in ignoring there is a sorrow and the sorceress cannot memorise it.” (Recorded in Ahmad 5:249)
“O you who believe! Seek help in patience and prayer. Truly, Allah is with As-Sabirin (the patient).” (Surah Al-Baqarah 2:153)
“O you who believe! Fasting was prescribed for you as it was prescribed for those before you, that you may acquire Taqwa.” (Surah Al-Baqarah 2:183)
“And when My servants ask you (O Muhammad concerning me, then answer them), I am indeed near (to them by My Knowledge). I respond to the invocations of the supplicant when he calls on Me (without any mediator or intercessor). So let them obey Me and believe in Me, so that they may be led aright.” (Surah Al-Baqarah 2:186)
This section provides reminders of different aspects of faith as well as practical guidance for running the newly established Islamic community. It starts by identifying the Ka’aba in Makkah as the center of Islamic worship and symbol of Muslim unity (Muslims had previously been praying while facing towards Jerusalem).
Following reminders of faith and characteristics of believers, the section gives detailed, practical advice on several social matters: food and drink, criminal law, wills and inheritance, fasting Ramadan, Hajj, treatment of orphans and widows, and divorce are all mentioned. The section also includes a discussion of jihad and what in entails.
We are told of what happened to Talut (Saul), Shamwil (Samuel), Dawud (David) and Jalut (Goliath) to remind believers that no matter what the numbers look like, and no matter how aggressive the enemy, one must be brave and fight back to preserve one’s existence and way of life.