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Surah Al Baqra Verses 201-210

201 And there are men who say: "Our Lord! give us good in this world and good in the Hereafter and defend us from the torment on the fire!"

202 To these will be allotted what they have earned and Allah is quick in account. 225

203 Celebrate the praises of Allah during the Appointed Days but if anyone hastens to leave in two days there is no blame on him and if anyone stays on there is no blame on him if his aim is to do right. Then fear Allah and know that ye will surely be gathered unto Him. 226

204 There is the type of man whose speech about this world's life may dazzle thee and he calls Allah to witness about what is in his heart; yet is he the most contentious of enemies. 227

205 When he turns his back his aim everywhere is to spread mischief through the earth and destroy crops and cattle. But Allah loveth not mischief.

206 When it is said to him "Fear Allah" he is led by arrogance to (more) crime. Enough for him is Hell; an evil bed indeed (to lie on)! 228

207 And there is the type of man who gives his life to earn the pleasure of Allah; and Allah is full of kindness to (His) devotees. 229

208 O ye who believe! enter into Islam whole-heartedly; and follow not the footsteps of the Evil One; for he is to you an avowed enemy.

209 If ye backslide after the clear (signs) have come to you then know that Allah is Exalted in Power Wise. 230

210 Will they wait until Allah comes to them in canopies of clouds with angels (in His train) and the question is (thus) settled? But to Allah do all questions go back (for decision). 231


Commentry:

225 Our spiritual account is counting up, both on the debit and credit side. In worldly accounts, both our profits and our losses may be delayed. But in God's books there is no delay. Our actions go before us. (See ii. 95. n) (2.202)

226 The Appointed Days: the three days after the tenth, when the pilgrims stay on in the Valley of Mina for prayer and praise. They are the days of Tashriq (see ii. 200, n. 223). It is optional for pilgrims to leave on the second or third day. (2.203)

227 The two contrasted types of men mentioned in ii. 200 and 201 are here further particularised: the glib hypocrite who appears worldly-wise but plans harm, contrasted with the sincere believer who is prepared to suffer martyrdom for his faith. The Commentators give names of people who exemplified these types. The mischief maker has a smooth tongue and indulges in plausible talk with many oaths. He appears to be worldly-wise, and though you may despise him for his worldiness, you may not realise his frauds. Behind your back he is an implacable enemy. He stirs up quarrels, and causes all sorts of mischief to you or your friends. He can never win God's love, and we are warned against his tricks. (2.204)

228 According to the English saying, "As you have made your bed, so you must lie in it." (2.206)

229 This second type of man, - firm, sincere, devoted, willing to give his life for the faith that is in him - was common in early Islam. Such men were its pillars. Through persecution, obloquy, torture, threat to their own lives or the lives of those dear to them, they stood by their leader, and many of them gave their lives. That is what established Islam. We are asked in the next verse to follow this type and shun the other or evil type. If we do that, our Cause is safe. (2.207)

230 If you backslide after the conviction has been brought home to you, you may cause some inconvenience to the Cause, or to those who counted upon you, but do not be so arrogant as to suppose that you will defeat God's Power and Wisdom. The loss will be your own. (2.209)

231 If faith is wanting, all sorts of excuses are made to resist the appeal of God. They might and do say: "Oh yes! we shall believe if God appears to us with His angels in His glory!" In other words they want to settle the question in their way, and not in God's way. That will not do. The decision in all questions belongs to God. If we are true to Him, we wait for His times and seasons, and do not expect Him to wait on ours. (2.210)

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