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Yusuf begs Allah to die as A Muslim

This is the invocation of Yusuf, the truthful one, to his Lord the Exalted and Most Honored. He invoked Allah after His favor was complete on him by being reunited with his parents and brothers, after He had bestowed on him prophethood and kingship. He begged his Lord the Exalted and Ever High, that as He has perfected His bounty on him in this life, to continue it until the Hereafter. He begged Him that, when he dies, he dies as a Muslim, as Ad-Dahhak said, and to join him with the ranks of the righteous, with his brethren the Prophets and Messengers, may Allah's peace and blessings be on them all. It is possible that Yusuf, peace be upon him, said this supplication while dying. In the Two Sahihs it is recorded that `A'ishah, may Allah be pleased with her, said that while dying, the Messenger of Allah was raising his finger and said - thrice,

« اللَّهُمَّ فِي الرَّفِيقِ الْأَعْلَى »
ثَلَاثًا

(O Allah to Ar-Rafiq Al-A`la ﴿the uppermost, highest company in heaven.) It is also possible that long before he died, Yusuf begged Allah to die as a Muslim and be joined with the ranks of the righteous.

﴿ ذَٲلِكَ مِنۡ أَنۢبَآءِ ٱلۡغَيۡبِ نُوحِيهِ إِلَيۡكَ‌ۖ وَمَا كُنتَ لَدَيۡہِمۡ إِذۡ أَجۡمَعُوٓاْ أَمۡرَهُمۡ وَهُمۡ يَمۡكُرُونَ وَمَآ أَڪۡثَرُ ٱلنَّاسِ وَلَوۡ حَرَصۡتَ بِمُؤۡمِنِينَ وَمَا تَسۡـَٔلُهُمۡ عَلَيۡهِ مِنۡ أَجۡرٍ‌ۚ إِنۡ هُوَ إِلَّا ذِڪۡرٌ۬ لِّلۡعَـٰلَمِينَ

(102. That is of the news of the Ghayb (Unseen) which We reveal to you. You were not (present) with them when they arranged their plan together, and (while) they were plotting.) (103. And most of mankind will not believe even if you desire it eagerly.) (104. And no reward you ask of them for it; it (the Qur'an) is no less than a Reminder unto the `Alamin (men and Jinn).)

This Story is a Revelation from Allah

Allah narrated to Muhammad, peace be upon him, the story of Yusuf and his brothers and how Allah raised him over them, giving him the better end, triumph, the sovereignty and wisdom (i.e., prophethood), even though they tried to harm and kill him. Allah said, `This and similar stories are part of the unseen incidents of the past, O Muhammad,

﴿ نُوحِيهِ إِلَيۡكَ‌ۖ

(which We reveal to you.) and inform you of, O Muhammad, because it carries a lesson, for you to draw from and a reminder to those who defy you.' Allah said next,

﴿ وَمَا كُنتَ لَدَيۡهِمۡ

`(You were not (present) with them), you did not witness their conference nor saw them,

﴿ إِذۡ أَجۡمَعُوٓاْ أَمۡرَهُمۡ

(when they arranged their plan together,) to throw Yusuf into the well,

﴿ وَهُمۡ يَمۡكُرُونَ

(and (while) they were plotting) against him. We taught you all this through Our Revelation which We sent down to you.' Allah said in other Ayat,

﴿ وَمَا كُنتَ لَدَيۡهِمۡ إِذۡ يُلۡقُونَ أَقۡلَـٰمَهُمۡ

(You were not with them, when they cast lots with their pens…) and,

﴿ وَمَا كُنتَ بِجَانِبِ ٱلۡغَرۡبِىِّ إِذۡ قَضَيۡنَآ إِلَىٰ مُوسَى ٱلۡأَمۡرَ

(And you were not on the western side, when We made clear to Musa the commandment...) (28:44) until,

﴿ وَمَا كُنتَ بِجَانِبِ ٱلطُّورِ إِذۡ نَادَيۡنَا

(And you were not at the side of the Tur when We did call.)(28:46) Allah also said,

﴿ وَمَا ڪُنتَ ثَاوِيً۬ا فِىٓ أَهۡلِ مَدۡيَنَ تَتۡلُواْ عَلَيۡهِمۡ ءَايَـٰتِنَا

(And you were not a dweller among the people of Madyan, reciting Our verses to them.) ﴿28:45 Allah states that Muhammad is His Messenger and that He has taught him the news of what occurred in the past, which carry lessons for people to draw from, so that they acquire their safety in their religious affairs as well as their worldly affairs. Yet, most people did not and will not believe, so Allah said,

﴿ وَمَآ أَڪۡثَرُ ٱلنَّاسِ وَلَوۡ حَرَصۡتَ بِمُؤۡمِنِينَ

(And most of mankind will not believe even if you desire it eagerly.) Allah said in similar Ayat,

﴿ وَإِن تُطِعۡ أَڪۡثَرَ مَن فِى ٱلۡأَرۡضِ يُضِلُّوكَ عَن سَبِيلِ ٱللَّهِ‌ۚ

(And if you obey most of those on the earth, they will mislead you far away from Allah's path) (6:116), and,

﴿ إِنَّ فِى ذَٲلِكَ لَأَيَةً۬‌ۖ وَمَا كَانَ أَكۡثَرُهُم مُّؤۡمِنِينَ

(Verily, in this is an Ayah, yet most of them are not believers.) (26:8) Allah said next,

﴿ وَمَا تَسۡـَٔلُهُمۡ عَلَيۡهِ مِنۡ أَجۡرٍ‌ۚ

(And no reward you ask of them for it;) Allah says, `You, O Muhammad, do not ask them in return for this advice and your call to all that is good and righteous, for any price or compensation for delivering it. Rather, you do so seeking Allah's Face and to deliver good and sincere advice to His creatures,

﴿ إِنۡ هُوَ إِلَّا ذِكۡرٌ۬ لِّلۡعَـٰلَمِينَ

(it (the Qur'an) is no less than a Reminder unto the `Alamin (men and Jinn)) with which they remember, receive guidance and save themselves in this life and the Hereafter.'

﴿ وَڪَأَيِّن مِّنۡ ءَايَةٍ۬ فِى ٱلسَّمَـٰوَٲتِ وَٱلۡأَرۡضِ يَمُرُّونَ عَلَيۡہَا وَهُمۡ عَنۡہَا مُعۡرِضُونَ وَمَا يُؤۡمِنُ أَڪۡثَرُهُم بِٱللَّهِ إِلَّا وَهُم مُّشۡرِكُونَ أَفَأَمِنُوٓاْ أَن تَأۡتِيَہُمۡ غَـٰشِيَةٌ۬ مِّنۡ عَذَابِ ٱللَّهِ أَوۡ تَأۡتِيَہُمُ ٱلسَّاعَةُ بَغۡتَةً۬ وَهُمۡ لَا يَشۡعُرُونَ

(105. And how many a sign in the heavens and the earth they pass by, while they are averse therefrom.) (106. And most of them believe not in Allah except that they attribute partners unto Him.) (107. Do they then feel secure from the coming against them of the covering veil of the torment of Allah, or of the coming against them of the (Final) Hour, all of a sudden while they perceive not)

People neglect to ponder the Signs before Them

Allah states that most people do not think about His signs and proofs of His Oneness that He created in the heavens and earth. Allah created brilliant stars and rotating heavenly objects and planets, all made subservient. There are many plots of fertile land next to each other on earth, and gardens, solid mountains, lively oceans, with their waves smashing against each other, and spacious deserts. There are many live creatures and others that have died; and animals, plants and fruits that are similar in shape, but different in taste, scent, color and attributes. All praise is due to Allah the One and Only, Who created all types of creations, Who Alone will remain and last forever. It is He Who is unique in His Names and Attributes. Allah said next,

﴿ وَمَا يُؤۡمِنُ أَڪۡثَرُهُم بِٱللَّهِ إِلَّا وَهُم مُّشۡرِكُونَ

(And most of them believe not in Allah except that they attribute partners unto Him.) Ibn `Abbas commented, "They have a part of faith, for when they are asked, `Who created the heavens Who created the earth Who created the mountains' They say, `Allah did.' Yet, they associate others with Him in worship.'' Similar is said by Mujahid, `Ata, `Ikrimah, Ash-Sha`bi, Qatadah, Ad-Dahhak and `Abdur-Rahman bin Zayd bin Aslam. In the Sahih, it is recorded that during the Hajj season, the idolators used to say in their Talbiyah: "Here we rush to Your service. You have no partners with You, except a partner with You whom You own but he owns not!'' Allah said in another Ayah,

﴿ إِنَّ ٱلشِّرۡكَ لَظُلۡمٌ عَظِيمٌ۬

(Verily, joining others in worship with Allah is a great Zulm (wrong) indeed.) (31:13) This indeed is the greatest type of Shirk, associating others with Allah in worship. It is recorded in the Two Sahihs that `Abdullah bin Mas`ud said, "I said, `O Allah's Messenger! What is the greatest sin' He said,

« أَنْ تَجْعَلَ للهِ نِدًّا وَهُوَ خَلَقَك »

(That you call a rival to Allah while He alone created you.)'' Al-Hasan Al-Basri commented on Allah's statement,

﴿ وَمَا يُؤۡمِنُ أَڪۡثَرُهُم بِٱللَّهِ إِلَّا وَهُم مُّشۡرِكُونَ

(And most of them believe not in Allah except that they attribute partners unto Him.) "This is the hypocrite; if he performs good deeds, he does so to show off with the people, and he is an idolater while doing this.'' Al-Hasan was referring to Allah's statement,

﴿ إِنَّ ٱلۡمُنَـٰفِقِينَ يُخَـٰدِعُونَ ٱللَّهَ وَهُوَ خَـٰدِعُهُمۡ وَإِذَا قَامُوٓاْ إِلَى ٱلصَّلَوٰةِ قَامُواْ كُسَالَىٰ يُرَآءُونَ ٱلنَّاسَ وَلَا يَذۡكُرُونَ ٱللَّهَ إِلَّا قَلِيلاً۬

(Verily, the hypocrites seek to deceive Allah, but it is He Who deceives them. And when they stand up for As-Salah, they stand with laziness and to be seen of men, and they do not remember Allah but little.) (4:142) There is another type of hidden Shirk that most people are unaware of. Hammad bin Salamah narrated that `Asim bin Abi An-Najud said that `Urwah said, "Hudhayfah visited an ill man and saw a rope tied around his arm, so he ripped it off while reciting,

﴿ وَمَا يُؤۡمِنُ أَڪۡثَرُهُم بِٱللَّهِ إِلَّا وَهُم مُّشۡرِكُونَ

(And most of them believe not in Allah except that they attribute partners unto Him.) In a Hadith, from Ibn `Umar collected by At-Tirmidhi who said it was Hasan, the Prophet said,

« مَنْ حَلَفَ بِغَيْرِ اللهِ فَقَدْ أَشْرَك »

(He who swears by other than Allah, commits Shirk.) Imam Ahmad, Abu Dawud and other scholars of Hadith narrated that `Abdullah bin Mas`ud said that the Messenger of Allah said,

« إِنَّ الرُّقَى وَالتَّمَائِمَ وَالتِّوَلَةَ شِرْك »

(Verily, Ar-Ruqa, At-Tama'im and At-Tiwalah are all acts of Shirk.) In another narration collected by Ahmad and Abu Dawud, the Prophet said,

« الطِّيَرَةُ شِرْكٌ وَمَا مِنَّا إِلَّا، وَلَكِنَّ اللهَ يُذْهِبُهُ بِالتَّوَكُّل »

(Verily, At-Tiyarah (omen) is Shirk; everyone might feel a glimpse of it, but Allah dissipates it with Tawakkul.)'' Allah said next,

﴿ أَفَأَمِنُوٓاْ أَن تَأۡتِيَہُمۡ غَـٰشِيَةٌ۬ مِّنۡ عَذَابِ ٱللَّهِ

(Do they then feel secure from the coming against them of the covering veil of the torment of Allah) Allah asks, `Do these idolaters who associate others with Allah in the worship, feel secure from the coming of an encompassing torment from where they perceive not' Allah said in other `Ayat,

﴿ أَفَأَمِنَ ٱلَّذِينَ مَكَرُواْ ٱلسَّيِّـَٔاتِ أَن يَخۡسِفَ ٱللَّهُ بِہِمُ ٱلۡأَرۡضَ أَوۡ يَأۡتِيَهُمُ ٱلۡعَذَابُ مِنۡ حَيۡثُ لَا يَشۡعُرُونَ أَوۡ يَأۡخُذَهُمۡ فِى تَقَلُّبِهِمۡ فَمَا هُم بِمُعۡجِزِينَ أَوۡ يَأۡخُذَهُمۡ عَلَىٰ تَخَوُّفٍ۬ فَإِنَّ رَبَّكُمۡ لَرَءُوفٌ۬ رَّحِيمٌ

(Do then those who devise evil plots feel secure that Allah will not sink them into the earth, or that the torment will not seize them from directions they perceive not Or that He may catch them in the midst of their going to and from, so that there be no escape for them (from Allah's punishment) Or that He may catch them with gradual wasting (of their wealth and health) Truly, Your Lord is indeed full of kindness, Most Merciful.) (16:45-47) and,

﴿ أَفَأَمِنَ أَهۡلُ ٱلۡقُرَىٰٓ أَن يَأۡتِيَہُم بَأۡسُنَا بَيَـٰتً۬ا وَهُمۡ نَآٮِٕمُونَ أَوَأَمِنَ أَهۡلُ ٱلۡقُرَىٰٓ أَن يَأۡتِيَهُم بَأۡسُنَا ضُحً۬ى وَهُمۡ يَلۡعَبُونَ
﴿ أَفَأَمِنُواْ مَڪۡرَ ٱللَّهِ‌ۚ فَلَا يَأۡمَنُ مَڪۡرَ ٱللَّهِ إِلَّا ٱلۡقَوۡمُ ٱلۡخَـٰسِرُونَ

(Did the people of the towns then feel secure against the coming of Our punishment by night while they were asleep Or, did the people of the towns then feel secure against the coming of Our punishment in the forenoon while they were playing Did they then feel secure against the plan of Allah None feels secure from the plan of Allah except the people who are the losers.) (7:97-99)

﴿ قُلۡ هَـٰذِهِۦ سَبِيلِىٓ أَدۡعُوٓاْ إِلَى ٱللَّهِ‌ۚ عَلَىٰ بَصِيرَةٍ أَنَا۟ وَمَنِ ٱتَّبَعَنِى‌ۖ وَسُبۡحَـٰنَ ٱللَّهِ وَمَآ أَنَا۟ مِنَ ٱلۡمُشۡرِكِينَ

(108. Say "This is my way; I invite unto Allah with sure knowledge, I and whosoever follows me. And Glorified and Exalted be Allah. And I am not of the idolaters.'')

The Messenger's Way

Allah orders His Messenger to say to mankind and the Jinns that this is his way, meaning, his method, path and Sunnah, concentrating on calling to the testimony that there is no deity worthy of worship except Allah alone without partners. The Messenger calls to this testimonial with sure knowledge, certainty and firm evidence. He calls to this way, and those who followed him call to what Allah's Messenger called to with sure knowledge, certainty and evidence, whether logical or religious evidence,

﴿ وَسُبۡحَـٰنَ ٱللَّهِ

(And Glorified and Exalted be Allah.) This part of the Ayah means, I glorify, honor, revere and praise Allah from having a partner, equal, rival, parent, son, wife, minister or advisor. All praise and honor be to Allah, glorified He is from all that they attribute to Him,

﴿ تُسَبِّحُ لَهُ ٱلسَّمَـٰوَٲتُ ٱلسَّبۡعُ وَٱلۡأَرۡضُ وَمَن فِيہِنَّ‌ۚ وَإِن مِّن شَىۡءٍ إِلَّا يُسَبِّحُ بِحَمۡدِهِۦ وَلَـٰكِن لَّا تَفۡقَهُونَ تَسۡبِيحَهُمۡ‌ۗ إِنَّهُ ۥ كَانَ حَلِيمًا غَفُورً۬ا

(The seven heavens and the earth and all that is therein, glorify Him, and there is not a thing but glorifies His praise. But you understand not their glorification. Truly, He is Ever Forbearing, Oft-Forgiving.) (17:44)

﴿ وَمَآ أَرۡسَلۡنَا مِن قَبۡلِكَ إِلَّا رِجَالاً۬ نُّوحِىٓ إِلَيۡہِم مِّنۡ أَهۡلِ ٱلۡقُرَىٰٓ‌ۗ أَفَلَمۡ يَسِيرُواْ فِى ٱلۡأَرۡضِ فَيَنظُرُواْ كَيۡفَ كَانَ عَـٰقِبَةُ ٱلَّذِينَ مِن قَبۡلِهِمۡ‌ۗ وَلَدَارُ ٱلۡأَخِرَةِ خَيۡرٌ۬ لِّلَّذِينَ ٱتَّقَوۡاْ‌ۗ أَفَلَا تَعۡقِلُونَ

(109. And We sent not before you (as Messengers) any but men unto whom We revealed, from among the people of townships. Have they not traveled in the land and seen what was the end of those who were before them And verily, the home of the Hereafter is the best for those who have Taqwa. Do you not then understand)

All of the Prophets are Humans and Men

Allah states that He only sent Prophets and Messengers from among men and not from among women, as this Ayah clearly states. Allah did not reveal religious and legislative laws to any woman from among the daughters of Adam. This is the belief of Ahlus-Sunnah wal-Jama`ah. Shaykh Abu Al-Hasan, `Ali bin Isma`il Al-Ash`ari mentioned that it is the view of Ahlus-Sunnah wal-Jama`ah, that there were no female Prophets, but there were truthful believers from among women. Allah mentions the most honorable of the truthful female believers, Maryam, the daughter of `Imran, when He said,

﴿ مَّا ٱلۡمَسِيحُ ٱبۡنُ مَرۡيَمَ إِلَّا رَسُولٌ۬ قَدۡ خَلَتۡ مِن قَبۡلِهِ ٱلرُّسُلُ وَأُمُّهُ ۥ صِدِّيقَةٌ۬‌ۖ ڪَانَا يَأۡڪُلَانِ ٱلطَّعَامَ‌ۗ

(The Messiah ('Isa), son of Maryam (Mary), was no more than a Messenger; many were the Messengers that passed away before him. His mother was a Siddiqah (truthful believer). They both used to eat food.) (5:75) Therefore, the best description Allah gave her is Siddiqah. Had she been a Prophet, Allah would have mentioned this fact when He was praising her qualities and honor. Therefore, Mary was a truthful believer according to the words of the Qur'an.

All Prophets were Humans not Angels

Ad-Dahhak reported that Ibn `Abbas commented on Allah's statement,

﴿ وَمَآ أَرۡسَلۡنَا مِن قَبۡلِكَ إِلَّا رِجَالاً۬

(And We sent not before you (as Messengers) any but men) "They were not from among the residents of the heaven (angels), as you claimed.'' This statement of Ibn `Abbas is supported by Allah's statements,

﴿ وَمَآ أَرۡسَلۡنَا قَبۡلَكَ مِنَ ٱلۡمُرۡسَلِينَ إِلَّآ إِنَّهُمۡ لَيَأۡكُلُونَ ٱلطَّعَامَ وَيَمۡشُونَ فِى ٱلۡأَسۡوَاقِ‌ۗ

(And We never sent before you any of the Messengers, but verily, they ate food and walked in the markets), (25:20)

﴿ وَمَا جَعَلۡنَـٰهُمۡ جَسَدً۬ا لَّا يَأۡڪُلُونَ ٱلطَّعَامَ وَمَا كَانُواْ خَـٰلِدِينَ ثُمَّ صَدَقۡنَـٰهُمُ ٱلۡوَعۡدَ فَأَنجَيۡنَـٰهُمۡ وَمَن نَّشَآءُ وَأَهۡلَڪۡنَا ٱلۡمُسۡرِفِينَ

(And We did not create them with bodies that ate not food, nor were they immortals. Then We fulfilled to them the promise. So We saved them and those whom We willed, but We destroyed extravagants), (21:8-9) and,

﴿ قُلۡ مَا كُنتُ بِدۡعً۬ا مِّنَ ٱلرُّسُلِ

(Say: "I am not a new thing among the Messengers.'') (46:9) Allah said next,

﴿ مِّنۡ أَهۡلِ ٱلۡقُرَىٰٓ‌ۗ

(from among the people of townships), meaning, from among the people of cities, not that they were sent among the Bedouins who are some of the harshest and roughest of all people.

Drawing Lessons from the Incidents of the Past

Allah said next,

﴿ أَفَلَمۡ يَسِيرُواْ فِى ٱلۡأَرۡضِ

(Have they not traveled in the land), meaning, `Have not these people who rejected you, O Muhammad, traveled in the land,'

﴿ فَيَنظُرُواْ كَيۡفَ كَانَ عَـٰقِبَةُ ٱلَّذِينَ مِن قَبۡلِهِمۡ‌ۗ

(and seen what was the end of those who were before them) that is, the earlier nations that rejected the Messengers, and how Allah destroyed them. A similar end is awaiting all disbelievers. Allah said in another Ayah,

﴿ أَفَلَمۡ يَسِيرُواْ فِى ٱلۡأَرۡضِ فَتَكُونَ لَهُمۡ قُلُوبٌ۬ يَعۡقِلُونَ بِہَآ

(Have they not traveled through the land, and have they hearts wherewith to understand) (22:46) When they hear this statement, they should realize that Allah destroyed the disbelievers and saved the believers, and this is His way with His creation. This is why Allah said,

﴿ وَلَدَارُ ٱلۡأَخِرَةِ خَيۡرٌ۬ لِّلَّذِينَ ٱتَّقَوۡاْ‌ۗ

(And verily, the home of the Hereafter is the best for those who have Taqwa.) Allah says, `Just as We saved the faithful in this life, We also wrote safety for them in the Hereafter, which is far better for them than the life of the present world.' Allah said in another Ayah,

﴿ إِنَّا لَنَنصُرُ رُسُلَنَا وَٱلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ فِى ٱلۡحَيَوٰةِ ٱلدُّنۡيَا وَيَوۡمَ يَقُومُ ٱلۡأَشۡهَـٰدُ يَوۡمَ لَا يَنفَعُ ٱلظَّـٰلِمِينَ مَعۡذِرَتُہُمۡۖ وَلَهُمُ ٱللَّعۡنَةُ وَلَهُمۡ سُوٓءُ ٱلدَّارِ

(Verily, We will indeed make victorious Our Messengers and those who believe in this world's life and on the Day when the witnesses will stand forth (i.e. Day of Resurrection). The Day when their excuses will be of no profit to the wrongdoers. Theirs will be the curse, and theirs will be the evil abode (in Hellfire).) (40:51-52)

﴿ حَتَّىٰٓ إِذَا ٱسۡتَيۡـَٔسَ ٱلرُّسُلُ وَظَنُّوٓاْ أَنَّہُمۡ قَدۡ ڪُذِبُواْ جَآءَهُمۡ نَصۡرُنَا فَنُجِّىَ مَن نَّشَآءُ‌ۖ وَلَا يُرَدُّ بَأۡسُنَا عَنِ ٱلۡقَوۡمِ ٱلۡمُجۡرِمِينَ

(110. (They were reprieved) until, when the Messengers gave up hope and thought that they were denied, then came to them Our help, and whomsoever We willed were rescued. And Our punishment cannot be warded off from the people who are criminals.)

Allah's Prophets are aided by Victory in Times of Distress and Need

Allah states that He sends His aid and support to His Messengers, peace be upon them, when distress and hardship surround them and they eagerly await Allah's aid. Allah said in another Ayah,

﴿ وَزُلۡزِلُواْ حَتَّىٰ يَقُولَ ٱلرَّسُولُ وَٱلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ مَعَهُ ۥ مَتَىٰ نَصۡرُ ٱللَّهِ‌ۗ

(..and were so shaken that even the Messenger and those who believed along with him said, "When (will come) the help of Allah'') (2:214) As for saying of Allah,

﴿ كَذَّبُواْ

(they were denied) There are two recitations for it. One of them is with a Shadda (meaning: they were betrayed by their people). And this is the way `A'ishah, may Allah be pleased with her, recited it. Al-Bukhari said that `Urwah bin Az-Zubayr narrated that he asked `A'ishah about the meaning of the following verse,

﴿ حَتَّىٰٓ إِذَا ٱسۡتَيۡـَٔسَ ٱلرُّسُلُ

(`Until when the Messengers give up hope...), Respite will be granted, is it denied or betrayed `A'ishah replied, "betrayed.'' `Urwah said, "I said, `They were sure that their people betrayed them, so why use the word `thought'' She said, `Yes, they were sure that they betrayed them.' I said,

﴿ وَظَنُّوٓاْ أَنَّہُمۡ قَدۡ ڪُذِبُواْ

(and they thought that they were denied (by Allah)) `A'ishah said, `Allah forbid! The Messengers did not suspect their Lord of such a thing.' I asked, `So what does this Ayah mean' She said, `This Verse is concerned with the Messengers' followers who had faith in their Lord and believed in their Messengers. The period of trials for those followers was long and Allah's help was delayed until the Messengers gave up hope for the conversion of the disbelievers amongst their nation and suspected that even their followers were shaken in their belief, Allah's help then came to them.''' Ibn Jurayj narrated that Ibn Abi Mulaikah said that Ibn `Abbas read this Ayah this way,

﴿ وَظَنُّوٓاْ أَنَّہُمۡ قَدۡ ڪُذِبُواْ

(and they thought they were denied.) `Abdullah bin Abi Mulaikah said, "Then Ibn `Abbas said to me that they were humans. He then recited this Ayah,

﴿ حَتَّىٰ يَقُولَ ٱلرَّسُولُ وَٱلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ مَعَهُ ۥ مَتَىٰ نَصۡرُ ٱللَّهِ‌ۗ أَلَآ إِنَّ نَصۡرَ ٱللَّهِ قَرِيبٌ۬

(...even the Messenger and those who believed along with him said, "When (will come) the help of Allah'' Yes! Certainly, the help of Allah is near!)(2:214)'' Ibn Jurayj also narrated that Ibn Abi Mulaykah said that `Urwah narrated to him that `Aishah did not agree to this and rejected it. She said, "Nothing that Allah has promised Muhammad, peace be upon him, but Muhammad knew for certainty that it shall come, until he died. However, the Messengers were tried with trials until they thought that those believers, who were with them, did not fully support them.'' Ibn Abi Mulaykah said that `Urwah narrated that `Aishah recited this Ayah this way, (وَظَنُّوا أَنَّهُمْ قَد كُذِّبُوا) "and they thought that they were betrayed.'' Therefore, there is another way of reciting this word, and there is a difference of opinion about its meaning. We narrated the meaning that Ibn `Abbas gave. Ibn Mas`ud said, as Sufyan Ath-Thawri narrated from him, that he read the Ayah this way,

﴿ حَتَّىٰٓ إِذَا ٱسۡتَيۡـَٔسَ ٱلرُّسُلُ وَظَنُّوٓاْ أَنَّہُمۡ قَدۡ ڪُذِبُواْ

(until, when the Messengers gave up hope and thought that they were denied.) `Abdullah commented that this is the recitation that you dislike. Ibn `Abbas also commented on the Ayah,

﴿ حَتَّىٰٓ إِذَا ٱسۡتَيۡـَٔسَ ٱلرُّسُلُ وَظَنُّوٓاْ أَنَّہُمۡ قَدۡ ڪُذِبُواْ

(until, when the Messengers gave up hope and thought that they were denied) "When the Messengers gave up hope that their people would accept their messages, and their people thought that their Messengers had not said the truth to them, Allah's victory came then,

﴿ فَنُجِّىَ مَن نَّشَآءُ‌ۖ

(and whomsoever We willed were rescued.) Ibn Jarir At-Tabari narrated that Ibrahim bin Abi Hamzah (Hurrah) Al-Jazari said, "A young man from Quraysh asked Sa'id bin Jubayr `O, Abu `Abdullah! How do you read this word, for when I pass by it, I wish I had not read this Surah,

﴿ حَتَّىٰٓ إِذَا ٱسۡتَيۡـَٔسَ ٱلرُّسُلُ وَظَنُّوٓاْ أَنَّہُمۡ قَدۡ ڪُذِبُواْ

(until, when the Messengers gave up hope and thought that they were denied...) He said, `Yes, it means, when the Messengers gave up hope that their people will believe in them and those to whom the Messengers were sent thought that the Messengers were not truthful.''' Ad-Dahhak bin Muzahim commented, "I have not seen someone who is called to knowledge and is lazy accepting the invitation, until today! If you traveled to Yemen just to get this explanation, it will still be worth it.'' Ibn Jarir At-Tabari narrated that Muslim bin Yasar asked Sa`id bin Jubayr about the same Ayah and he gave the same response. Muslim stood up and embraced Sa'id bin Jubayr, saying, "May Allah relieve a distress from you as you relieved a distress from me!'' This was reported from Sa'id bin Jubayr through various chains of narration. This is also the Tafsir that Mujahid bin Jabr and several other Salaf scholars gave for this Ayah. However, some scholars said that the Ayah,

﴿ وَظَنُّوٓاْ أَنَّہُمۡ قَدۡ ڪُذِبُواْ

(and thought that they were denied), is in reference to the believers who followed the Messengers, while some said it is in reference to the disbelievers among the Messengers' nation. In the latter case, the meaning becomes: `and the disbelievers thought that the Messengers were not given a true promise of victory. 'Ibn Jarir At-Tabari narrated that Tamim bin Hadhlam said, "I heard `Abdullah bin Mas`ud comment on this Ayah,

﴿ حَتَّىٰٓ إِذَا ٱسۡتَيۡـَٔسَ ٱلرُّسُلُ

(until, when the Messengers gave up hope) that their people will believe in them, and their people thought when the respite was long, that the Messengers were not given a true promise.''

﴿ لَقَدۡ كَانَ فِى قَصَصِہِمۡ عِبۡرَةٌ۬ لِّأُوْلِى ٱلۡأَلۡبَـٰبِ‌ۗ مَا كَانَ حَدِيثً۬ا يُفۡتَرَىٰ وَلَـٰڪِن تَصۡدِيقَ ٱلَّذِى بَيۡنَ يَدَيۡهِ وَتَفۡصِيلَ ڪُلِّ شَىۡءٍ۬ وَهُدً۬ى وَرَحۡمَةً۬ لِّقَوۡمٍ۬ يُؤۡمِنُونَ

(111. Indeed in their stories, there is a lesson for men of understanding. It (the Qur'an) is not a forged statement but a confirmation of that which was before it and a detailed explanation of everything and a guide and a mercy for the people who believe.)

A Lesson for Men Who have Understanding

Allah states here that the stories of the Messengers and their nations and how we saved the believers and destroyed the disbelievers are,

﴿ عِبۡرَةٌ۬ لِّأُوْلِى ٱلۡأَلۡبَـٰبِ‌ۗ

(a lesson for men of understanding), who have sound minds,

﴿ مَا كَانَ حَدِيثً۬ا يُفۡتَرَىٰ

(It is not a forged statement.) Allah says here that this Qur'an could not have been forged; it truly came from Allah,

﴿ وَلَـٰكِن تَصۡدِيقَ ٱلَّذِى بَيۡنَ يَدَيۡهِ

(but a confirmation of that which was before it) in reference to the previously revealed Divine Books, by which this Qur'an testifies to the true parts that remain in them and denies and refutes the forged parts that were added, changed and falsified by people. The Qur'an accepts or abrogates whatever Allah wills of these Books,

﴿ وَتَفۡصِيلَ ڪُلِّ شَىۡءٍ۬

(and a detailed explanation of everything) Meaning the allowed, the prohibited, the preferred and the disliked matters. The Qur'an deals with the acts of worship, the obligatory and recommended matters, forbids the unlawful and discourages from the disliked. The Qur'an contains major facts regarding the existence and about matters of the future in general terms or in detail. The Qur'an tells us about the Lord, the Exalted and Most Honored, and about His Names and Attributes and teaches us that Allah is glorified from being similar in any way to the creation. Hence, the Qur'an is,

﴿ هُدً۬ى وَرَحۡمَةً۬ لِّقَوۡمٍ۬ يُؤۡمِنُونَ

(a guide and a mercy for the people who believe.) with which their hearts are directed from misguidance to guidance and from deviation to conformance, and with which they seek the mercy of the Lord of all creation in this life and on the Day of Return. We ask Allah the Most Great to make us among this group in the life of the present world and in the Hereafter, on the Day when those who are successful will have faces that radiate with light, while those whose faces are dark will end up with the losing deal. This is the end of the Tafsir of Surah Yusuf; and all the thanks and praises are due to Allah, and all our trust and reliance are on Him Alone.