Allah informs us that when it is said to those liars,
("What is it that your Lord has revealed'' They say,) not wanting to answer,
("Tales of the men of old!'') meaning nothing is revealed to him, what he is reciting to us is just tales of the men of old, taken from the previous Books. As Allah says,
(And they say: "Tales of the ancients, which he has written down, and they are dictated to him morning and afternoon.'') (25:5) i.e., they tell lies against the Messenger and say things contradicting one another, but all of it is false, as Allah says,
(Look at the parables they make of you, so they have gone astray, and they are not able to find the right way.)(17:48) Once they have gone beyond the bounds of the truth, whatever they say will be in error. They used to say that he (the Prophet ) was a sorcerer, a poet, a soothsayer, or a madman, then they settled on an idea proposed by their leader, an individual known as Al-Walid bin Al-Mughirah Al-Makhzumi, when:
(He thought, and plotted. So let him be cursed, how he plotted! And once more let him be cursed, how he plotted! Then he thought. Then he frowned and he looked in a bad tempered way; then he turned back, and was proud. Then he said: "This is nothing but the magic of old.'') (74:18-24) meaning something that had been transmitted and passed down. So they dispersed having agreed on this opinion, may Allah punish them.
(They will bear their own burdens in full on the Day of Resurrection, and also of the burdens of those whom they misled without knowledge.) meaning, `We decreed that they would say that, so they will carry the burden of their own sins and some of the burden of those who followed them and agreed with them,' i.e., they will be held guilty not only for going astray themselves, but also for tempting others and having them follow them. As it says in a Hadith:
(Whoever invites people to guidance, he will receive a reward like that of those who follow him, without diminishing their reward in the least. And whoever invites people to misguidance, he will bear a burden of sin like that of those who follow him, without diminishing their burden in the least.) Allah says;
(They shall bear their own loads, and other loads besides their own; and they shall be questioned about their false allegations on the Day of Resurrection.) (29:13) Al-`Awfi reported from Ibn `Abbas that it is like the Ayah:
(That they may bear their own burdens in full on the Day of Resurrection, and also of the burdens of those whom they misled without knowledge.) (16:25) Allah says,
(They shall bear their own loads, and other loads besides their own) (29:13). Mujahid said: "They will bear the burden of their own sins, and they will bear the sins of those who obeyed them, but that will not lessen the punishment of those who obeyed them at all.''
(26. Those before them indeed plotted, but Allah struck at the foundation of their building, the roof fell down upon them from above them, and the torment overtook them from directions they did not perceive.) (27. Then, on the Day of Resurrection, He will disgrace them and will say: "Where are My (so-called) partners, those over which you caused so much discord'' Those who have been given the knowledge will say: "Indeed it is a Day of disgrace and misery for the disbelievers.'')
(Those before them indeed plotted,) Al-`Awfi reported that Ibn `Abbas said: "This refers to Namrud (Nimrod), who built the tower.'' Others said that it refers to Bukhtanassar (Nebuchadnezzar). The correct view is that this is said by way of example, to refute what was done by those who disbelieved in Allah and associated others in worship with Him. As Nuh said,
("And they have hatched a mighty scheme.'') (71:22) meaning, they used all sorts of ploys to misguide their people, and tempted them to join them in their Shirk via all possible means. On the Day of Resurrection their followers will say to them:
("Nay, but it was your plotting by night and day, when you ordered us to disbelieve in Allah and set up rivals to Him!'') (34:33)
(but Allah struck at the foundation of their building.) meaning, He uprooted it and brought their efforts to naught. This is like the Ayah:
(Every time they kindled the fire of war, Allah extinguished it.) (5:64) and
(But Allah's (torment) reached them from a place where they were not expecting it, and He cast terror into their hearts so that they destroyed their own dwellings with their own hands and the hands of the believers. So then take admonition, O you with eyes (to see).) (59:2) Allah says here:
(but Allah struck at the foundation of their building, and then the roof fell down upon them, from above them, and the torment overtook them from directions they did not perceive. Then, on the Day of Resurrection, He will disgrace them) (16:26-27) meaning, He will expose their scandalous deeds and what they used to hide in their hearts, and He will bring it out in the open. As He says,
(The Day when all the secrets will be (exposed and) examined.) (86:9) They will be displayed and made known, as found in the Two Sahihs, where Ibn `Umar reported that the Messenger of Allah said:
(On the Day of Resurrection a banner will be set up by his backside for every deceitful person, (whose size is) in accordance with the amount of his deceit. It be said, "This is the one who deceived so-and-so, the son of so-and-so.'') Thus, what they used to plot in secret will be made public. Allah will humiliate them before all of His creation, and the Lord will say to them, in rebuke and reprimand;
(Where are My (so-called) partners, those over which you caused so much discord) meaning, you fought and made enemies for their sake, so where are they now to help and save you
(Can they help you or (even) help themselves) (26:93)
(Then will (man) have no power, nor any helper.) (86:10) When evidence and proof is established against them, and the Word (of Allah) is justified against them, and they will be unable to give any excuse, realizing that escape is impossible, then
(Those who have been given the knowledge will say) who are the leaders in this world and the Hereafter and who know about the truth in this world and the Hereafter - will say,
(Indeed it is a Day of disgrace and misery for the disbelievers.) meaning, today those who disbelieved in Allah and worshipped others who have no power either to benefit or to harm them are now surrounded by disgrace and punishment.
(28. Those whose lives the angels take while they are doing wrong to themselves. Then, they will (falsely) submit (saying): "We did not do any evil.'' (The angels will reply): "Yes! Truly, Allah is Most Knowing of what you did.'') (29. "So enter the gates of Hell, to abide therein, and indeed, what an evil abode there is for the arrogant.'')
Allah informs us of the state of the idolaters who are doing wrong to themselves when death approaches and the angels come to seize their evil souls.
(Then, they will (falsely) submit) meaning, they will make it appear as if they used to listen and obey by saying,
(We did not do any evil.) Similarly, on the Day of Resurrection, they will say,
(By Allah, our Lord, we were not idolaters.) (6:23)
(On the Day when Allah will resurrect them all together; then they will swear to Him as they swear to you.) (58:18) Allah says, rejecting what they say,
("Yes! Truly, Allah is Most Knowing of what you did. So enter the gates of Hell, to abide therein, and indeed, what an evil abode there is for the arrogant.'') (16:28-29), meaning, a miserable position in the abode of humiliation for those who were too arrogant to pay attention to the signs of Allah and follow His Messengers. They will enter Hell from the day they die with their souls, and their bodies will feel the heat and hot winds of their graves. When the Day of Resurrection comes, their souls will be reunited with their bodies, to abide forever in the fire of Hell, and
(It will not be complete enough to kill them nor shall its torment be lightened for them.) (35:36) As Allah says,
(The Fire, they are exposed to it morning and afternoon. And on the Day when the Hour will be established (it will be said to the angels): "Cause Fir'awn's people to enter the severest torment!'') (40:46).
(30. And (when) it is said to those who had Taqwa (piety and righteousness), ''What is it that your Lord has revealed'' They say: "That which is good.'' For those who do good in this world, there is good, and the home of the Hereafter will be better. And excellent indeed will be the home (i.e. Paradise) of those who have Taqwa.) (31. `Adn (Eden) Paradise (Gardens of Eternity) which they will enter, under which rivers flow, in it they will have all that they wish. Thus Allah rewards those who have Taqwa.) (32. Those whose lives the angels take while they are in a pious state saying (to them) "Salamun `Alaikum (peace be on you!). Enter Paradise because of what (good) you used to do (in the world).'')
Here we are told about the blessed, as opposed to the doomed, who, when they are asked,
(What is it that your Lord has revealed) they will reluctantly answer, "He did not reveal anything, these are just the fables of old.'' But the blessed, on the other hand, will say, "That which is good,'' meaning - He revealed something good, meaning mercy and blessings for those who followed it and believed in it. Then we are told about Allah's promise to His servants which He revealed to His Messengers. He says:
(For those who do good in this world, there is good) This is like the Ayah,
(Whoever works righteousness - whether male or female - while being a true believer verily, to him We will give a good life, and We shall certainly reward them in proportion to the best of what they used to do.) (16:97), which means that whoever does good in this world, Allah will reward him for his good deeds in this world and in the next. Then we are told that the home of the Hereafter will be better, i.e., better than the life of this world, and that the reward in the Hereafter will be more complete than the reward in this life, as Allah says,
(But those who were given (religious) knowledge said: "Woe to you! The reward of Allah (in the Hereafter) is better) (28:80) and,
(and what is with Allah for the righteous is better.) (3:198) and;
(Although the Hereafter is better and enduring) (87:17). Allah said to His Messenger:
(And indeed the Hereafter is better for you than the present) (93:4). Then Allah describes the abode of the Hereafter, saying,
(And excellent indeed will be the home (i.e. Paradise) of those who have Taqwa.)
(`Adn (Eden) Paradise (Gardens of Eternity)) refers to the home of the Muttaqun, i.e., in the Hereafter they will have Gardens of Eternity in which they will dwell forever.
(under which rivers flow) meaning, between its trees and palaces.
(in it they will have all that they wish) this is like the Ayah:
(in it (there will be) all that souls could desire, and all that eyes could delight in, and in it you will live forever.) (43:71)
(Thus Allah rewards those who have Taqwa.) meaning, this is how Allah rewards everyone who believes in Him, fears Him, and does good deeds. Then Allah tells us about their condition when death approaches them in a good state, i.e., free from Shirk, impurity and all evil. The angels greet them and give them the good news of Paradise, as Allah says:
(Verily, those who say: "Our Lord is Allah (alone),'' and then behave righteously, on them the angels will descend (at the time of their death) (saying): "Fear not, nor grieve! But receive the good news of Paradise as you have been promised! We have been your friends in the life of this world and are (so) in the Hereafter. In it you shall have (all) that your souls desire, and in it you shall have (all) that you ask for. An entertainment from (Allah), the Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.'')(41:30:32) We have already referred to the Hadiths that have been reported on the taking of the soul of the believer and the soul of the disbeliever, when we discussed the Ayah,
(Allah will keep firm those who believe, with the word that stands firm in this world (i.e. they will keep on worshipping Allah Alone and none else), and in the Hereafter. And Allah will cause the wrongdoers to stray, and Allah does as He wills.) (14:27)
(33. Are they but waiting for the angels to come to them, or there comes the command of your Lord Thus did those before them. And Allah did not wrong them, but they were wronging themselves.) (34. Then, they were afflicted by their evil deeds, and they were surrounded by that which they used to mock.)