Surah Ta Ha Ayat 115-135

{115. And indeed We made a covenant with Adam before, but he forgot, and We found on his part no firm willpower. 

116. And (remember) when We said to the angels: “Prostrate yourselves to Adam.” They prostrated themselves (all) except Iblis; he refused. 

117. Then We said: “O Adam! Verily, this is an enemy to you and to your wife. So let him not get you both out of Paradise, so that you will be distressed.” 

118. “You will never be hungry therein nor naked.” 

119. “And you (will) suffer not from thirst therein nor from the sun’s heat.” 

120. Then Shaytan whispered to him, saying: “O Adam! Shall I lead you to the Tree of Eternity and to a kingdom that will never waste away?” 

121. Then they both ate of the Tree, and so their private parts became manifest to them, and they began to cover themselves with the leaves of the Paradise for their covering. Thus Adam disobeyd his Lord, so he went astray. 

122.Then his Lord chose him, and turned to him with forgiveness, and gave him guidance.}

 

The Story of Adam and Iblis

Ibn Abi Hatim recorded that Ibn Abbas said, “Verily, man was named Insan only because he was given a covenant, but he forgot it (Nasiya).” (At-Tabari 18:383)  Ali bin Abi Talhah reported the same (At-Tabari 18:383) from Ibn Abbas. Mujahid and Al-Hasan said that he forgot means, “He abandoned it.” (At-Tabari 18:383)

Concerning Allah’s statement, “And when We said to the angels: “Prostrate yourselves to Adam.” He, Allah mentions how Adam was honored and what respect was given to him. He mentions how He favored him over many of those whom He created. A discussion of this story has already preceded in Surat Al-Baqarah, Surat Al-Araf, Surat Al-Hijr and Surat Al-Kahf. It will also be mentioned again at the end of Surah Sad. In this story, Allah mentions the creation of Adam and that He commanded the angels to prostrate to Adam as a sign of honor and respect. He also explains the enmity of Iblis for the Children of Adam and for their father, Adam, before them. Due to this Allah says, “They prostrated themselves (all) except Iblis; he refused.” This means that he refrained from prostrating and became arrogant. “Then We said: “O Adam! Verily, this is an enemy to you and to your wife…”  here wife refers to Hawwa’. “So let him not get you both out of Paradise, so that you will be distressed.” meaning, ‘Do not be hasty in doing something that will get you expelled from Paradise, or else you will be fatigued, discomforted and worried, seeking your sustenance. But here, in Paradise, you live a life of ease with no burdens and no difficulties.’ “Verily, you will never be hungry therein nor naked.” The reason that Allah combined hunger and nakedness is because hunger is internal humiliation, while nakedness is external humiliation. “And you (will) suffer not from thirst therein nor from the sun’s heat.” These two characteristics are also opposites. Thirst is the internal heat and being parched from lack of water, while the suns heat is the external heat. “Then Shaytan whispered to him, saying: “O Adam! Shall I lead you to the Tree of Eternity and to a kingdom that will never waste away” It has already been mentioned that he caused them to fall through deception. “And he swore by Allah to them both: “Verily, I am one of the sincere well-wishers for you both.” (7:21)

It has already preceded in our discussion that Allah took a promise from Adam and his wife that although they could eat from every fruit, they could not come near a specific tree in Paradise. However, Iblis did not cease prodding them until they both had eaten from it. It was the Tree of Eternity (Shajarat Al-Khuld). This meant that anyone who ate from it would live forever and always remain. A Hadith has been narrated which mentions this Tree of Eternity. Abu Dawud At-Tayalisi reported from Abu Hurayrah that the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said,

“Verily, in Paradise there is a tree which a rider can travel under its shade for one hundred years and still not have passed it. It is the Tree of Eternity.” (Musnad At-Tayalisi no.332 Similar is recorded in Al-Bukhari without the addition “It is the Tree of Eternity”)

Allah said, “And they began to cover themselves with the leaves of the Paradise for their covering.” Mujahid said, “They patched the leaves on themselves in the form of a garment.” Qatadah and As-Suddi both said the same. (At-Tabari 18:388)

Concerning Allah’s statement, “Thus Adam disobeyed his Lord, so he went astray. Then his Lord chose him, and turned to him with forgiveness, and gave him guidance.” Al-Bukhari recorded that Abu Hurayrah said that the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said,

“Musa argued with Adam and he said to him, “Are you the one who got mankind expelled from Paradise because of your sin and you caused them grief!” Adam replied, “Are you the one whom Allah chose for His Divine Messages and His direct Speech? Are you blaming me for a matter that Allah wrote upon me before He created me” 

Then, the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said,

“Thus, Adam defeated Musa.” (Fath Al-Bari 8:288)

This Hadith has various routes of transmission in the Two Sahihs as well as the Musnad collections.

{123. He (Allah) said: “Get you down, both of you, together, some of you are an enemy to some others. Then if there comes to you guidance from Me, then whoever follows My guidance he shall neither go astray nor shall be distressed. 

124. But whosoever turns away from My Reminder, verily, for him is a life of hardship, and We shall raise him up blind on the Day of Resurrection.” 

125. He will say: “O my Lord! Why have you raised me up blind, while I had sight (before).” 

126. (Allah) will say: “Like this Our Ayat came unto you, but you disregarded them, and so this Day, you will be neglected.”}

 

The Descent of Adam to the Earth and the Promise of Good for the Guided and Evil for the Transgressors

Allah says to Adam, Hawwa’ and Iblis, “Get down from here, all of you.” This means each of you should get out of Paradise. We expounded upon this in Surah Al-Baqarah. “Some of you as enemies to others.” (2:36) He (Allah) was saying this to Adam and his progeny and Iblis and his progeny.

Concerning Allah’s statement, “Then if there comes to you guidance from Me,” Abu Al-Aliyyah said, “This (guidance) means the Prophets, the Messengers and the evidence.” (At-Tabari 1:549) “Then whoever follows My guidance he shall neither go astray nor shall be distressed.” Ibn Abbas said, “He will not be misguided in this life and he will not be distressed in the Hereafter.” (At-Tabari 18:389) “But whosoever turns away from My Reminder,” This means, “Whoever opposes my command and what I have revealed to My Messenger, then he has turned away from it, neglected it and taken his guidance from other than it.” “verily, for him is a life of hardship” meaning, his life will be hard in this world. He will have no tranquillity and no expanding of his breast (ease). Rather, his chest will be constrained and in difficulty due to his misguidance. Even if he appears to be in comfort outwardly and he wears whatever he likes, eats whatever he likes and lives wherever he wants, he will not be happy. For verily, his heart will not have pure certainty and guidance. He will be in agitation, bewilderment and doubt. He will always be in confusion and a state of uncertainty. This is from the hardship of life.

Concerning His statement, “and We shall raise him up blind on the Day of Resurrection.” Mujahid, Abu Salih and As-Suddi said, “This means he will have no proof.” (At-Tabari 18:394) Ikrimah said, “He will be made blind to everything except Hell.” This is as Allah says, “And We shall gather them together on the Day of Resurrection on their faces, blind, dumb and deaf; their abode will be Hell.” (17:97) This is why Allah says, “O my Lord! Why have you raised me up blind, while I had sight (before).” This means in the life of this world. “(Allah) will say: “Like this Our Ayat came unto you, but you disregarded them, and so this Day, you will be neglected.” Meaning, “When you turned away from the signs of Allah and dealt with them in the manner of one who does not remember them after they were conveyed to you. You neglected them, turned away from them and were heedless of them. Therefore, today We will treat you in the manner of one who has forgotten you.” “So this Day We shall forget them as they forgot their meeting of this Day.” (7:51) For verily, the punishment will be a retribution that is based upon the type of deed that was done. However, forgetting the words of the Qur’an, while understanding its meaning and acting upon its legislation, is not included in the meaning of this specific threat. Yet, forgetting the words of the Qur’an has been warned against from a different aspect. It has been reported in the Sunnah that it is absolutely forbidden and there is a serious threat against one who forgets Qur’an (that he previously memorized).

{127. And thus do We requite him who transgresses beyond bounds and believes not in the Ayat of his Lord; and the torment of the Hereafter is far more severe and more lasting.} 

Severe Torment for Him Who transgresses beyond bounds

Allah says: ‘Thus We do requite those who transgress beyond bounds and believe the Ayat of Allah in this world and in the Hereafter.’ “For them is a torment in the life of this world, and certainly, harder is the torment of the Hereafter. And they have no defender or protector against Allah.” (13:34) Therefore Allah said, “and the torment of the Hereafter is far more severe and more lasting.” meaning: a more grievous and more painful penalty than of this world they will remain therein, they will abide forever in such torment. Allah’s Messenger said to both husband and wife who took an oath, when the husband accused his wife of committing illegal sexual intercourse:

“Verily, the torment of this worldly life is more insignificant, compared to the punishment of the Hereafter.” (Muslim 2:1131)

{128. Is it not a guidance for them (to know) how many generations We have destroyed before them, in whose dwellings they walk? Verily, in this are signs indeed for men of understanding. 

129. And had it not been for a Word that went forth before from your Lord, and a term determined, (their punishment) must necessarily have come (in this world). 

130. So bear patiently what they say, and glorify the praises of your Lord before the rising of the sun, and before its setting, and during some hours of the night, and at the ends of the day, that you may become pleased with the reward which Allah shall give you.}

Many Nations were destroyed and in Them is a Lesson

Allah, the Exalted, says, “Is it not a guidance for them…?” This is addressed to those who reject what the Prophet came to them with: ‘We destroyed those who denied the Messengers from the previous nations before them. They showed open hostility, so now there is not trace of them and none of them are left. This is witnessed by the empty homes that these people left behind, and which others have now inherited, moving about in the dwellings of those of the past.’ “Verily, in this are signs indeed for men of understanding.” This means those who have sound intellect and correct understanding. This is as Allah says, “Have they not traveled through the land, and have they hearts wherewith to understand and ears wherewith to hear Verily, it is not the eyes that grow blind, but it is the hearts which are in the breasts that grow blind.” (22:46) Allah also said in Surah Alif Lam Mim As-Sajdah, “Is it not a guidance for them: how many generations We have destroyed before them in whose dwellings they walk about” (32:26) Then, Allah, the Exalted, says, “And had it not been for a Word that went forth before from your Lord, and a term determined (their punishment), must necessarily have come (in this world).” (20:129) This means that if it were not for the Word that had already preceded from Allah – that He would not punish anyone until the proof had been established against him and the punishment would take place at an appointed time that He has already determined for these rejecters – then the punishment would certainly seize them immediately.

The Command to be patient and perform the Five daily Prayers

Allah comforts His Prophet by saying to him, “So bear patiently what they say” This means, “Be patient concerning their rejection of you.” “And glorify the praises of your Lord before the rising of the sun,” This is speaking of the Morning (Fajr) prayer. “and before its setting,” This is speaking of the Mid-afternoon (Asr) prayer. This has been mentioned in the Two Sahihs on the authority of Jarir bin Abdullah Al-Bajali, who said, “Once we were sitting with the Messenger of Allah when he looked up at the moon on a night when it was full. He said,  “Verily, you all will see your Lord (in the Hereafter) just as you see this moon and you will not have to crowd together to see Him. Therefore, if you are able to not miss a prayer before sunrise (Fajr) and before sunset (Asr), then you should do so.” Then he recited this Ayah.” (Fath Al-Bari 2:40)

Imam Ahmad recorded that Umarah bin Ru’aybah that he heard the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, saying,

“Anyone who prays before sunrise and before sunset will never enter the Hellfire.” (Ahmad 4:136)

This was also recorded by Muslim. (Muslim 1:440)

Concerning Allah’s statement, “and during some hours of the night, glorify the praises.” This means during its hours offer the late night (Tahajjud) prayer. Some of the scholars said it also means the after sunset (Maghrib) and the night (Isha) prayers. “and at the ends of the day” This is the opposite of the hours of the night. “that you may become pleased” As Allah says, “And verily, your Lord will give you (all good) so that you shall be well-pleased.” (93:5) In the Sahih, it is recorded that the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said,

“Allah, the Exalted, says, “O people of Paradise.” They will reply, “We are here at Your service and Your pleasure our Lord.” He will then say, “Are you all pleased?” They will reply, “Why should we not be pleased our Lord, when You have given us what You have not given any others of Your creation?” Allah will then say, “Verily, I am going to give you something better than that.” They will say, “And what thing could be better than that?” Allah will say, “I have allowed for you My pleasure, so I will never be angry with you again after this.” (Fath Al-Bari 11:423)

In another Hadith, it states that it will be said,

“O people of Paradise, verily you all have an appointed promise with Allah that He would like to fulfill for you.” They will say, “And what is that Has He not already enlightened our faces, made our Scales (of good deeds) heavy, saved us from the Hellfire and entered us into Paradise?” Then, the veil will be lifted and they will gaze upon Him (Allah). By Allah, He has not given them anything better than the opportunity to look upon Him, and that is the increase (extra blessing).” (Ahmad 4:332)

{131. And strain not your eyes in longing for the things We have given for enjoyment to various groups of them, the splendor of the life of this world, that We may test them thereby. But the provision of your Lord is better and more lasting. 

132. And enjoin Salah on your family, and be patient in offering them. We ask not of you a provision: We provide for you. And the good end is for those who have Taqwa. 

133. And they say: Why does not he bring us a miracle from his Lord? Has there not come to them the proof of that which is in the former papers (Scriptures)? 

134. And if We had destroyed them with a torment before this, they would surely have said: “Our Lord! If only You had sent us a Messenger we should certainly have followed Your Ayat, before we were humiliated and disgraced.” 

135. Say: Each one is waiting, so wait you too; and you shall know who are they that are on As-Sirat As-Sawi.}

 

Do not look at the Enjoyment of the Wealthy, be patient in the worship of Allah

Allah, the Exalted, says to His Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, “Do not look at what these people of luxury and their likes and peers have of nice comforts. For verily, it is only short-lived splendor and a feeble bounty, which We are using to test them with. And very few of My servants are truly thankful.” Mujahid said, “various groups of them,” “This means the wealthy people.’ (At-Tabari 17:141) This means, “Verily, We have given you (O Muhammad) better than that which We have given them.” This is just as Allah says in another Ayah, “And indeed, We have bestowed upon you seven repeatedly recited verses, and the Grand Qur’an. Look not with your eyes ambitiously.” (15:87-88) Likewise, that which Allah has stored for His Messenger in the Hereafter is something extremely great. It is an unlimited reward that cannot be described. This is as Allah says, “And verily, your Lord will give you so that you shall be well-pleased.” (93:5) For this reason, Allah says, “But the provision of your Lord is better and more lasting.” In the Sahih it is recorded that Umar bin Al-Khattab entered upon the Messenger of Allah while he was in the small room in which he had separated himself from his wives after he had vowed to stay away from them. When he came in, he saw him (the Prophet) lying down upon a sandy straw mat. There was nothing in the house except a pile of sant tree pods and some hanging equipment. Umar’s eyes filled with tears (upon seeing this), so the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said to him,

“What makes you cry, O Umar?”

He replied, “O Messenger of Allah, verily Kisra and Caesar are living in their luxurious conditions, yet you are the chosen Friend of Allah amongst His creation” The Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said,

“Do you have doubt, O son of Al-Khattab? Those people have had their good hastened for them in the life of this world.” (Fath Al-Bari 5:137)

Thus, the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, was the most abstinent of people concerning worldly luxuries, even though he had the ability to attain them. If he acquired anything of worldly treasures he would spend it on this and that for the servants of Allah. He would never save anything for himself for the next day.

Ibn Abi Hatim reported from Abu Said that the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said,

“Verily, the thing I fear most for you all is what Allah will allow you to acquire of the splendor of this world.”

They (the Companions) said, “What is the splendor of this world, O Messenger of Allah?” He said,

“The blessings of the earth.” (Ibn Abi Hatim 7:2442)

Qatadah and As-Suddi said, “The splendor of this worldly life means the beautiful adornments of the life of this world.” (At-Tabari 18:404) Qatadah said, “that We may test them thereby.” “So that We may put them to trial.” (At-Tabari 18:405) Concerning Allah’s statement, “And enjoin the Salah on your family, and be patient in offering them.” This means to save them from the punishment of Allah by the establishment of the prayer, and you also be patient in performing it. This is as Allah says, “O you who believe! Ward off yourselves and your families against a Fire (Hell).” (66:6) Ibn Abi Hatim recorded that Zayd bin Aslam reported from his father that he and Yarfa’ would sometimes spend the night at Umar bin Al-Khattab’s. Umar had a certain time of night that he would get up and pray. However, sometimes he would not get up for it. Then, we would say, “He is not going to get up like he usually does.” When he would awaken, he would make his family get up as well. He would say,

“And enjoin the Salah on your family, and be patient in offering them.” (At-Tabari 18:406)

Allah said; “We ask not of you a provision: We provide for you.” This means that if you establish the prayer, your sustenance will come to you from where you did not expect. This is as Allah says, “And whosoever has Taqwa of Allah, He will make a way for him to get out (from every difficulty). And He will provide him from (sources) he never could imagine.” (65:2-3) Allah also says, “And I (Allah) created not the Jinn and mankind except that they should worship Me (Alone).” until, “Verily, Allah is the All-Provider, Owner of Power, the Most Strong.” (51:56-58) Thus, Allah says, “We ask not of you a provision: We provide for you.” Verily, At-Tirmidhi and Ibn Majah recorded that Abu Hurayrah said that the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said,

“Allah, the Exalted, says, “O son of Adam, perform My worship and I will fill your chest with wealth and fulfill your needs. If you do not do so, then I will fill your chest with toil and I will not fulfill your needs.” (Tuhfat Al-Ahwadhi 7:166)

It is also reported from Zayd bin Thabit that he heard the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, saying,

“Whoever makes the worldly life his major concern, then Allah will scatter his situation for him (i.e. make it difficult) and his poverty will be placed between his eyes. He will not get from this world anything except that which has already been written for him. Whoever makes the Hereafter his intention, then his situation will be gathered for him (i.e. made easy) and his wealth will be placed in his heart. The worldly life will come to him anyway (in spite of his not seeking it).” (Ibn Majah 2:1375)

Concerning Allah’s statement, “And the good end is for those who have Taqwa.” This means the good end in this life and in the Hereafter. In the Hereafter the good end will be Paradise for whoever feared Allah. In the Sahih it is reported that the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said,

“I saw in my dream tonight a vision as of we were in the home of Uqbah bin Rafi and we were given fresh ibn Tab dates. Therefore, I interrupted this dream to mean that the good final outcome is for us in this world along with lofty (Rifa’ah) positions, and that our religion is good.” (Muslim 4:1779)

The Request of the Polytheists for Proofs while the Qur’an is itself a Proof

Allah, the Exalted, informs about the disbelievers in their statement, “Why does not” This means, ‘Why doesn’t Muhammad bring us some proof from his Lord?’ They meant a sign that was proof of his truthfulness in his claim that he was the Messenger of Allah. Allah, the Exalted, said, “Has there not come to them the proof of that which is in the former papers (Scriptures)” This means the Qur’an which Allah revealed to him while he was an unlettered man who could not write well and who did not study with the People of the Book. Yet, the Qur’an contains information about the people of the past that tells of their events from times long ago and it agrees with the authentic information in the previous Books concerning these matters. The Qur’an is the supervisor of these other Books. It verifies what is correct and explains the mistakes that were falsely placed in these Books and attributed to them. This Ayah is similar to Allah’s statement in Surat Al-Ankabut, “And they say: “Why are not signs sent down to him from his Lord?” Say: “The signs are only with Allah, and I am only a plain warner.” It is not sufficient for them that We have sent down to you the Book which is recited to them Verily, herein is mercy and a reminder for a people who believe.” (29:50-51)

In the Two Sahihs, it is recorded that the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said,

“There was not any Prophet except that he was given signs that caused men to believe. That which I have been given is a revelation that Allah has revealed to me, so I hope that I have the most followers among them (the Prophets) on the Day of Resurrection.” (Fath Al-Bari 8:619)

In this Hadith, the Prophet only mentioned the greatest of the signs that he was given, which is the Qur’an. However, he did have other miracles, which were innumerable and limitless. These miracles have all been recorded in the books that discuss them, and they have been affirmed in the places that mention them.

Then Allah says, “And if We had destroyed them with a torment before this, they would surely have said: “Our Lord! If only You had sent us a Messenger…” This means, “If We had destroyed these rejecting people before We sent this Noble Messenger to them and revealed the Mighty Book to them, they would have said, “Our Lord! If only You had sent us a Messenger,” meaning, ‘before you destroyed us, so we could have believed in him and followed him.’ This is like Allah said, “we should certainly have followed Your Ayat, before we were humiliated and disgraced.” Allah, the Exalted, explains that these rejecters are stubborn and obstinate and they will not believe. “Even if every sign should come them, until they see the painful torment.” (10:97) This is as Allah says, “And this is a blessed Book which We have sent down, so follow it and have Taqwa (of Allah), that you may receive mercy.” Until His statement, “because of their turning away.” (6:155-157) Allah also says, “And they swore by Allah their most binding oath that if a warner came to them, they would be more guided than any of the nations (before them).” (35:42) “And they swear their strongest oaths by Allah, that if there came to them a sign, they would surely believe therein.” (6:109) to the completion of those Ayat.

Then, Allah says, “(Say) “Say, O Muhammad, to those who deny you, oppose you and continue in their disbelief and obstinance.” “Each one is waiting,” among you and us; “so wait you too” This is a command to await (anticipate). “and you shall know who are they that are on As-Sirat As-Sawi.” This means the straight road. “And who are they that have let themselves be guided.” meaning guidance to the truth and the path of right guidance. This is similar to Allah’s statement, “And they will know, when they see the torment, who it is that is most astray from the path!” (25:42) And Allah said, “Tomorrow they will come to know who is liar, the insolent one!” (54:26)

This is the end of the Tafsir of Surah Ta Ha, and all praise and gratitude is due to Allah. The Tafsir of Surat Al-Anbiya’ will follow this, if Allah wills. And all praise and thanks are due to Allah.

Tafsir Ibn Kathir (Abridged) Vol 6 Pages 399-421

 

 

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