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The Description of the Situation of the Hypocrites and the Command to maintain Tawhid and seek Forgiveness

Allah describes the hypocrites' stupidity and limited understanding. They used to sit before Allah's Messenger and listen to his words without understanding anything. Then when they left from his presence,

﴿ قَالُواْ لِلَّذِينَ أُوتُواْ ٱلۡعِلۡمَ

(they say to those who have received knowledge) from the Companions

﴿ مَاذَا قَالَ ءَانِفًا‌ۚ

("What is it that he has said just now'') meaning, at this moment. They did not understand what he said, nor did they care about it. Allah says,

﴿ أُوْلَـٰٓٮِٕكَ ٱلَّذِينَ طَبَعَ ٱللَّهُ عَلَىٰ قُلُوبِہِمۡ وَٱتَّبَعُوٓاْ أَهۡوَآءَهُمۡ

(Such are the men whose hearts Allah has sealed because they followed their lusts.) which means that they had neither sound understanding nor correct intentions. Allah then says,

﴿ وَٱلَّذِينَ ٱهۡتَدَوۡاْ زَادَهُمۡ هُدً۬ى

(And as for those who accept guidance, He increases them in guidance) which means that those who seek guidance, Allah facilitates it for them; He guides them to it, makes them firm on it, and gives them more of it.

﴿ وَءَاتَٮٰهُمۡ تَقۡوَٮٰهُمۡ

(and bestows on them their Taqwa. ) meaning, He inspires them to their righteous guidance. Allah then says,

﴿ فَهَلۡ يَنظُرُونَ إِلَّا ٱلسَّاعَةَ أَن تَأۡتِيَہُم بَغۡتَةً۬‌ۖ

(Do they then await except that the Hour should come upon them suddenly) meaning, while they are unaware of it.

﴿ فَقَدۡ جَآءَ أَشۡرَاطُهَا‌ۚ

(But already there have come (some of) its portents;) meaning, the signs of its approach. This is similar to Allah's saying,

﴿ هَـٰذَا نَذِيرٌ۬ مِّنَ ٱلنُّذُرِ ٱلۡأُولَىٰٓ أَزِفَتِ ٱلۡأَزِفَةُ

(This is a warner of the warners of old. The approaching Day has drawn near.) (53:56-57) And His saying,

﴿ ٱقۡتَرَبَتِ ٱلسَّاعَةُ وَٱنشَقَّ ٱلۡقَمَرُ

(The Hour has drawn near, and the moon has split.) (54:1) And His saying,

﴿ أَتَىٰٓ أَمۡرُ ٱللَّهِ فَلَا تَسۡتَعۡجِلُوهُ‌ۚ

(The command of Allah is coming, so do not be impatient for it.) (16:1) And His saying,

﴿ ٱقۡتَرَبَ لِلنَّاسِ حِسَابُهُمۡ وَهُمۡ فِى غَفۡلَةٍ۬ مُّعۡرِضُونَ

(The people's Day of Reckoning has approached while they turn away in heedlessness.) (21:1) Thus, the Messenger's advent is one of the signs of the Hour, because he is the Finality of the Messengers. With him, Allah has completed the religion and established the evidence against all people in a way that was never done by a previous Prophet. Allah's Messenger has most clearly informed about the signs and indications of the Hour, as we have discussed elsewhere. Al-Bukhari recorded from Sahl bin Sa`d (may Allah be pleased with him) that he saw Allah's Messenger bring his index and middle fingers together while he said,

« بُعِثْتُ أَنَا وَالسَّاعَةَ كَهَاتَيْن »

(I have been sent before the Hour as these two (fingers).) Allah continues,

﴿ فَأَنَّىٰ لَهُمۡ إِذَا جَآءَتۡہُمۡ ذِكۡرَٮٰهُمۡ

(and when it (actually) is on them, how can they benefit then by their reminder) meaning, how would remembering benefit the disbelievers when the Hour comes upon them This is similar to Allah's saying,

﴿ يَوۡمَٮِٕذٍ۬ يَتَذَڪَّرُ ٱلۡإِنسَـٰنُ وَأَنَّىٰ لَهُ ٱلذِّكۡرَىٰ

(On that Day will the human being remember, but what would that remembrance avail him then) (89:23) And His saying,

﴿ وَقَالُوٓاْ ءَامَنَّا بِهِۦ وَأَنَّىٰ لَهُمُ ٱلتَّنَاوُشُ مِن مَّكَانِۭ بَعِيدٍ۬

(They will say (in the Hereafter): "Now we believe in it!'' But how could they claim belief from such a far place) (34:52) Allah then says,

﴿ فَٱعۡلَمۡ أَنَّهُ ۥ لَآ إِلَـٰهَ إِلَّا ٱللَّهُ

(So know that La ilaha illallah) This is a declaration that there is no true God except Allah. It is not something that is easy for him to command the people to have knowledge of. That is why Allah connected it with,

﴿ وَٱسۡتَغۡفِرۡ لِذَنۢبِكَ وَلِلۡمُؤۡمِنِينَ وَٱلۡمُؤۡمِنَـٰتِ‌ۗ

(and ask forgiveness for your sin and for the believing men and women.) In the Sahih, it is recorded that Allah's Messenger used to say,

« اللْهُمَّ اغْفِرْ لِي خَطِيئَتِي وَجَهْلِي وَإِسْرَافِي فِي أَمْرِي وَمَا أَنْتَ أَعْلَمُ بِهِ مِنِّي، اللْهُمَّ اغْفِرْ لِي هَزْلِي وَجِدِّي، وَخَطَئِي وَعَمْدِي، وَكُلُّ ذلِكَ عِنْدِي »

(O Allah, forgive my sin, my ignorance, my immoderation in my affairs, and all that You know better about my (faults) than myself. O Allah, forgive for me my joking, my seriousness, my unintended error, and my deliberate (mistakes) -- and I have done of all that.) It is also reported in the Sahih that he used to say at the end of the prayer,

« اللْهُمَّ اغْفِرْ لِي مَا قَدَّمْتُ وَمَا أَخَّرْتُ، وَمَا أَسْرَرْتُ وَمَا أَعْلَنْتُ، وَمَا أَسْرَفْتُ، وَمَا أَنْتَ أَعْلَمُ بِهِ مِنِّي، أَنْتَ إِلهِي لَا إِلهَ إِلَّا أَنْت »

(O Allah, forgive for me what I have previously done, what I may commit in future, what I have committed secretly, what I have committed openly, what I have done excessively, and all sins that You know better than me. You are my God. There is no (true) God except You.) It is also recorded in the Sahih that he used to say,

« يَا أَيُّهَا النَّاسُ تُوبُوا إِلَى رَبِّكُمْ، فَإِنِّي أَسْتَغْفِرُ اللهَ وَأَتُوبُ إِلَيْهِ فِي الْيَوْمِ أَكْثَرَ مِنْ سَبْعِينَ مَرَّة »

(O people! Repent to your Lord! Verily, I ask Allah for forgiveness and repent to Him more than seventy times every day.) Allah then says,

﴿ وَٱللَّهُ يَعۡلَمُ مُتَقَلَّبَكُمۡ وَمَثۡوَٮٰكُمۡ

(And Allah knows well your moving about, and your place of rest.) means, He knows how you behave during the day, and where you settle at night. This is similar to His saying,

﴿ وَهُوَ ٱلَّذِى يَتَوَفَّٮٰڪُم بِٱلَّيۡلِ وَيَعۡلَمُ مَا جَرَحۡتُم بِٱلنَّہَارِ

(It is He Who takes your souls by night and knows all that you do by day.)(6:60) And He says,

﴿ وَمَا مِن دَآبَّةٍ۬ فِى ٱلۡأَرۡضِ إِلَّا عَلَى ٱللَّهِ رِزۡقُهَا وَيَعۡلَمُ مُسۡتَقَرَّهَا وَمُسۡتَوۡدَعَهَا‌ۚ كُلٌّ۬ فِى ڪِتَـٰبٍ۬ مُّبِينٍ۬

(And there is no moving creature on earth but its provision is up to Allah, and He knows its dwelling place and its deposit (before birth and after death) -- all is in a clear register.) (11:6)

﴿ وَيَقُولُ ٱلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ لَوۡلَا نُزِّلَتۡ سُورَةٌ۬‌ۖ فَإِذَآ أُنزِلَتۡ سُورَةٌ۬ مُّحۡكَمَةٌ۬ وَذُكِرَ فِيہَا ٱلۡقِتَالُ‌ۙ رَأَيۡتَ ٱلَّذِينَ فِى قُلُوبِہِم مَّرَضٌ۬ يَنظُرُونَ إِلَيۡكَ نَظَرَ ٱلۡمَغۡشِىِّ عَلَيۡهِ مِنَ ٱلۡمَوۡتِ‌ۖ فَأَوۡلَىٰ لَهُمۡ طَاعَةٌ۬ وَقَوۡلٌ۬ مَّعۡرُوفٌ۬‌ۚ فَإِذَا عَزَمَ ٱلۡأَمۡرُ فَلَوۡ صَدَقُواْ ٱللَّهَ لَكَانَ خَيۡرً۬ا لَّهُمۡ فَهَلۡ عَسَيۡتُمۡ إِن تَوَلَّيۡتُمۡ أَن تُفۡسِدُواْ فِى ٱلۡأَرۡضِ وَتُقَطِّعُوٓاْ أَرۡحَامَكُمۡ أُوْلَـٰٓٮِٕكَ ٱلَّذِينَ لَعَنَهُمُ ٱللَّهُ فَأَصَمَّهُمۡ وَأَعۡمَىٰٓ أَبۡصَـٰرَهُمۡ

(20. Those who believe say: "Why is not a Surah sent down (for us)'' But now that a decisive Surah is sent down mentioning fighting, you can see those in whose hearts is disease (of hypocrisy) looking at you with the look of one who is about to faint for fear of death. But it was better for them.) (21. Obedience and good words. And when the matter is resolved, then if they had been true to Allah, it would have been better for them.) (22. So would you perhaps, if you turned away, spread corruption on earth, and sever your ties of kinship) (23. Such are the ones whom Allah has cursed, so that He has made them deaf and blinded their vision.)

The Situation of the True Believer and the Sick-Hearted when the Command for Jihad was revealed

Allah mentions that the believers were hoping that Jihad would be legislated. But when Allah ordained it, many of the people turned back, as Allah says,

﴿ أَلَمۡ تَرَ إِلَى ٱلَّذِينَ قِيلَ لَهُمۡ كُفُّوٓاْ أَيۡدِيَكُمۡ وَأَقِيمُواْ ٱلصَّلَوٰةَ وَءَاتُواْ ٱلزَّكَوٰةَ فَلَمَّا كُتِبَ عَلَيۡہِمُ ٱلۡقِتَالُ إِذَا فَرِيقٌ۬ مِّنۡہُمۡ يَخۡشَوۡنَ ٱلنَّاسَ كَخَشۡيَةِ ٱللَّهِ أَوۡ أَشَدَّ خَشۡيَةً۬‌ۚ وَقَالُواْ رَبَّنَا لِمَ كَتَبۡتَ عَلَيۡنَا ٱلۡقِتَالَ لَوۡلَآ أَخَّرۡتَنَآ إِلَىٰٓ أَجَلٍ۬ قَرِيبٍ۬‌ۗ قُلۡ مَتَـٰعُ ٱلدُّنۡيَا قَلِيلٌ۬ وَٱلۡأَخِرَةُ خَيۡرٌ۬ لِّمَنِ ٱتَّقَىٰ وَلَا تُظۡلَمُونَ فَتِيلاً

(Have you not seen those who were told: "Restrain your hands (from fighting), establish the Salah, and give Zakah.'' But then when fighting was ordained for them, you find a party of them fearing the people as they fear Allah or more. They said: "Our Lord! Why have You decreed fighting upon us If only You have postponed us for a short period.'' Say: "The enjoyment of this world is little. The Hereafter is far better for him who had Taqwa of (Allah), and you will not be dealt with unjustly, even as much as a thin thread (inside a date's pit).'')(4:77) Similarly, Allah says here,

﴿ وَيَقُولُ ٱلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ لَوۡلَا نُزِّلَتۡ سُورَةٌ۬‌ۖ

(Those who believe say: "Why is not a Surah sent down (for us)'') means, a Surah containing an order to fight. Then He says,

﴿ فَإِذَآ أُنزِلَتۡ سُورَةٌ۬ مُّحۡكَمَةٌ۬ وَذُكِرَ فِيہَا ٱلۡقِتَالُ‌ۙ رَأَيۡتَ ٱلَّذِينَ فِى قُلُوبِہِم مَّرَضٌ۬ يَنظُرُونَ إِلَيۡكَ نَظَرَ ٱلۡمَغۡشِىِّ عَلَيۡهِ مِنَ ٱلۡمَوۡتِ‌ۖ

(But now that a decisive Surah is sent down mentioning fighting, you can see those in whose hearts is disease looking at you with the look of one who is about to faint for fear of death.) meaning, due to their fear, terror, and cowardice concerning meeting the enemies. Allah then encourages them by saying,

﴿ فَأَوۡلَىٰ لَهُمۡ طَاعَةٌ۬ وَقَوۡلٌ۬ مَّعۡرُوفٌ۬‌ۚ

(But it was better for them, obedience and good words.) which means that it would have been better for them to listen and obey in that present situation.

﴿ فَإِذَا عَزَمَ ٱلۡأَمۡرُ

(When the matter (of fighting) is resolved.) which means when the situation becomes serious and the time of fighting truly arrives.

﴿ فَلَوۡ صَدَقُواْ ٱللَّهَ

(if they had been true to Allah,) meaning, by making their intentions sincerely for Him.

﴿ لَكَانَ خَيۡرً۬ا لَّهُمۡ

(it would have been better for them) Allah then says,

﴿ فَهَلۡ عَسَيۡتُمۡ إِن تَوَلَّيۡتُمۡ

(So would you perhaps, if you turned away) meaning, from Jihad and you withdrew from it.

﴿ أَن تُفۡسِدُواْ فِى ٱلۡأَرۡضِ وَتُقَطِّعُوٓاْ أَرۡحَامَكُمۡ

(spread corruption on earth, and sever your ties of kinship) which means, would you then go back to your old practices of the time of ignorance: shedding blood and severing kinship ties Allah then says,

﴿ أُوْلَـٰٓٮِٕكَ ٱلَّذِينَ لَعَنَهُمُ ٱللَّهُ فَأَصَمَّهُمۡ وَأَعۡمَىٰٓ أَبۡصَـٰرَهُمۡ

(Such are the ones whom Allah has cursed, so He has made them deaf and blinded their vision.) This involves a general prohibition of spreading corruption on earth, and a specific prohibition of severing the ties of kinship. In fact, Allah has commanded the people to establish righteousness on earth, as well as to join the ties of kinship by treating the relatives well in speech, actions, and spending wealth in charity. Many authentic and sound Hadiths have been reported through numerous routes of transmission from Allah's Messenger in this regard. Al-Bukhari recorded from Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him) that Allah's Messenger said,

« خَلَقَ اللهُ تَعَالَى الْخَلْقَ فَلَمَّا فَرَغَ مِنْهُ قَامَتِ الرَّحِمُ فَأَخَذَتْ بِحَقْوِ الرَّحْمنِ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ فَقَالَ: مَهْ، فَقَالَتْ: هذَا مَقَامُ الْعَائِذِ بِكَ مِنَ الْقَطِيعَةِ، فَقَالَ تَعَالَى: أَلَا تَرْضَيْنَ أَنْ أَصِلَ مَنْ وَصَلَكِ وَأَقْطَعَ مَنْ قَطَعَكِ؟ قَالَتْ: بَلَى، قَالَ: فَذَاكِ لَك »

(After Allah completed creating the creation, the womb stood up and pulled at the lower garment of the Most Merciful. He said, 'Stop that!' It replied, 'My stand here is the stand of one seeking refuge in you from severance of ties.' Allah said, 'Would it not please you that I join whoever joins you and sever whoever severs you' It replied, 'Yes indeed!' He said, 'You are granted that!') Abu Hurayrah then added, "Read if you wish:

﴿ فَهَلۡ عَسَيۡتُمۡ إِن تَوَلَّيۡتُمۡ أَن تُفۡسِدُواْ فِى ٱلۡأَرۡضِ وَتُقَطِّعُوٓاْ أَرۡحَامَكُمۡ

(So would you perhaps, if you turned away, spread corruption on earth, and sever your ties of kinship)'' Then Al-Bukhari recorded it with another wording which states that the Messenger of Allah said,

« اقْرَءُوا إِنْ شِئْتُمْ
﴿ فَهَلۡ عَسَيۡتُمۡ إِن تَوَلَّيۡتُمۡ أَن تُفۡسِدُواْ فِى ٱلۡأَرۡضِ وَتُقَطِّعُوٓاْ أَرۡحَامَكُمۡ

(Read if you wish: (So would you perhaps, if you turned away, spread corruption on earth, and sever your ties of kinship)) Muslim also recorded it. Imam Ahmad recorded from Abu Bakrah (may Allah be pleased with him) that Allah's Messenger said:

« مَا مِنْ ذَنْبٍ أَحْرَى أَنْ يُعَجِّلَ اللهُ تَعَالَى عُقُوبَتَهُ فِي الدُّنْيَا، مَعَ مَا يَدَّخِرُ لِصَاحِبِهِ فِي الْاخِرَةِ، مِنَ الْبَغْيِ وَقَطِيعَةِ الرَّحِم »

(No sin deserves that Allah hasten its punishment in the worldly life, in addition to what He reserves in the Hereafter for those who commit it, more than injustice and severance of the ties of kinship.) This was also recorded by Abu Dawud, At-Tirmidhi, and Ibn Majah. At-Tirmidhi said, "This Hadith is Sahih.'' Imam Ahmad recorded from Thawban (may Allah be pleased with him) that Allah's Messenger said,

« مَنْ سَرَّهُ النَّسَاءُ فِي الْأَجَلِ وَالزِّيَادَةُ فِي الرِّزْقِ، فَلْيَصِلْ رَحِمَه »

(Whoever likes for his life to be extended, and his provision increased, let him connect his ties of kinship.) Ahmad was alone in recording this narration, but it has a supporting narration in the Sahih. Imam Ahmad recorded from `Abdullah bin `Amr (may Allah be pleased with him) that Allah's Messenger said,

« إِنَّ الرَّحِمَ مُعَلَّقَةٌ بِالْعَرْشِ، وَلَيْسَ الْوَاصِلُ بِالْمُكَافِىءِ، وَلكِنِ الْوَاصِلُ الَّذِي إِذَا قُطِعَتْ رَحِمُهُ وَصَلَهَا »

(Verily, the womb is attached to the Throne. And connecting its ties does not mean dealing evenly (with the kinsfolk), but it rather means that if one's kinsfolk sever the ties, he connects them.) This Hadith was also recorded by Al-Bukhari. Ahmad also recorded from `Abdullah bin `Amr (may Allah be pleased with him) that Allah's Messenger said,

« تُوضَعُ الرَّحِمُ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ لَهَا (حُجْنَةٌ كَحُجْنَةِ) الْمِغْزَلِ تَكَلَّمُ بِلِسَانٍ طَلِقٍ ذَلِقٍ، فَتَقْطَعُ مَنْ قَطَعَهَا وَتَصِلُ مَنْ وَصَلَهَا »

(The womb will be placed on the Day of Resurrection, curved like a spinning wheel, speaking with an eloquent fluent tongue, calling to severing whoever had severed it, and joining whoever had joined it.) Imam Ahmad recorded from `Abdullah bin `Amr (may Allah be pleased with him) that Allah's Messenger said,

« الرَّاحِمُونَ يَرْحَمُهُمُ الرَّحْمنُ، ارْحَمُوا أَهْلَ الْأَرْضِ يَرْحَمْكُمْ أَهْلُ السَّمَاءِ، وَالرَّحِمُ شُجْنَةٌ مِنَ الرَّحْمنِ، مَنْ وَصَلَهَا وَصَلَتْهُ وَمَنْ قَطَعَهَا بَتَّتْه »

(The merciful ones will be granted mercy from the Most Merciful. Have mercy on those on earth -- the One above the heavens will then have mercy on you. And Ar-Rahim (the womb) is from Ar-Rahman, so whoever joins it, it joins him; and whoever severs it, it severs him.) Abu Dawud and At-Tirmidhi both recorded this Hadith and it has been reported with continuous chains of transmission. At-Trimidhi said, "Hasan Sahih.'' There are numerous other Hadiths in this regard.

﴿ أَفَلَا يَتَدَبَّرُونَ ٱلۡقُرۡءَانَ أَمۡ عَلَىٰ قُلُوبٍ أَقۡفَالُهَآ إِنَّ ٱلَّذِينَ ٱرۡتَدُّواْ عَلَىٰٓ أَدۡبَـٰرِهِم مِّنۢ بَعۡدِ مَا تَبَيَّنَ لَهُمُ ٱلۡهُدَى‌ۙ ٱلشَّيۡطَـٰنُ سَوَّلَ لَهُمۡ وَأَمۡلَىٰ لَهُمۡ ذَٲلِكَ بِأَنَّهُمۡ قَالُواْ لِلَّذِينَ كَرِهُواْ مَا نَزَّلَ ٱللَّهُ سَنُطِيعُڪُمۡ فِى بَعۡضِ ٱلۡأَمۡرِ‌ۖ وَٱللَّهُ يَعۡلَمُ إِسۡرَارَهُمۡ فَكَيۡفَ إِذَا تَوَفَّتۡهُمُ ٱلۡمَلَـٰٓٮِٕكَةُ يَضۡرِبُونَ وُجُوهَهُمۡ وَأَدۡبَـٰرَهُمۡ ذَٲلِكَ بِأَنَّهُمُ ٱتَّبَعُواْ مَآ أَسۡخَطَ ٱللَّهَ وَڪَرِهُواْ رِضۡوَٲنَهُ ۥ فَأَحۡبَطَ أَعۡمَـٰلَهُمۡ

(24. Will they not then reflect upon the Qur'an, or are there locks upon their hearts) (25. Verily, those who have turned back as disbelievers after guidance had become clear to them -- Shaytan has enticed them and filled them with false hopes.) (26. That is because they said to those who hate what Allah has sent down: "We will obey you in part of the matter.'' And Allah knows their secrets.) (27. Then how (will it be) when the angels will take their souls at death, striking their faces and their backs) (28. That is because they followed that which angered Allah and hated what earns His pleasure, so He rendered their deeds worthless.)

The Command to reflect upon the Qur'an

Commanding the people to reflect and ponder upon the Qur'an, and prohibiting them from turning away from it, Allah says,

﴿ أَفَلَا يَتَدَبَّرُونَ ٱلۡقُرۡءَانَ أَمۡ عَلَىٰ قُلُوبٍ أَقۡفَالُهَآ

(Will they not then reflect upon the Qur'an, or are there locks upon their hearts) means, there indeed are locks upon some hearts, firmly closing them so that none of its meanings can reach them. Ibn Jarir recorded from Hisham bin `Urwah, from his father (may Allah be pleased with him) that Allah's Messenger once recited this Ayah,

﴿ أَفَلَا يَتَدَبَّرُونَ ٱلۡقُرۡءَانَ أَمۡ عَلَىٰ قُلُوبٍ أَقۡفَالُهَآ

(Will they not then reflect upon the Qur'an, or are there locks upon their hearts) and a young man from Yemen said, "Indeed, there are locks upon them -- until Allah opens them totally or slightly.'' After that `Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) always liked that young man, and kept that to himself until he became in charge, upon which he utilized him (as a consultant).

Condemning Apostasy

Allah then says,

﴿ إِنَّ ٱلَّذِينَ ٱرۡتَدُّواْ عَلَىٰٓ أَدۡبَـٰرِهِم

(Verily, those who have turned back) meaning, they departed from the faith and returned to disbelief.

﴿ مِّنۢ بَعۡدِ مَا تَبَيَّنَ لَهُمُ ٱلۡهُدَى‌ۙ ٱلشَّيۡطَـٰنُ سَوَّلَ لَهُمۡ

(... after guidance had become clear to them -- Shaytan has enticed them) meaning he adorned and beautified that (apostasy) for them.

﴿ وَأَمۡلَىٰ لَهُمۡ

(and filled them with false hopes.) meaning, he tempted them, and deceived them.

﴿ ذَٲلِكَ بِأَنَّهُمۡ قَالُواْ لِلَّذِينَ كَرِهُواْ مَا نَزَّلَ ٱللَّهُ سَنُطِيعُڪُمۡ فِى بَعۡضِ ٱلۡأَمۡرِ‌ۖ

(That is because they said to those who hate what Allah sent down: "We will obey your in part of the matter.'') means, they plotted secretly with them and gave them evil advice -- as is the common practice of the hypocrites who declare the opposite of what they conceal. Because of this, Allah says,

﴿ وَٱللَّهُ يَعۡلَمُ إِسۡرَارَهُمۡ

(And Allah knows their secrets. ) whatever they hide and conceal, Allah is well-acquainted with it and He knows it. This is similar to His saying,

﴿ وَٱللَّهُ يَكۡتُبُ مَا يُبَيِّتُونَ‌ۖ

(...And Allah records all that they plot by night.) (4:81) Allah then says,

﴿ فَكَيۡفَ إِذَا تَوَفَّتۡهُمُ ٱلۡمَلَـٰٓٮِٕكَةُ يَضۡرِبُونَ وُجُوهَهُمۡ وَأَدۡبَـٰرَهُمۡ

(How (will it be) when the angels will take their souls at death, striking their faces and their backs) That is, how their situation will be when the angels come to take their lives, and their souls cling to their bodies, causing the angels to extract them by force, harshness, and beating. This is similar to Allah's saying,

﴿ وَلَوۡ تَرَىٰٓ إِذۡ يَتَوَفَّى ٱلَّذِينَ ڪَفَرُواْ‌ۙ ٱلۡمَلَـٰٓٮِٕكَةُ يَضۡرِبُونَ وُجُوهَهُمۡ وَأَدۡبَـٰرَهُمۡ

(If you could but see when the angels take away the lives of the disbelievers, striking their faces and their backs.) (8:50) And His saying,

﴿ وَلَوۡ تَرَىٰٓ إِذِ ٱلظَّـٰلِمُونَ فِى غَمَرَٲتِ ٱلۡمَوۡتِ وَٱلۡمَلَـٰٓٮِٕكَةُ بَاسِطُوٓاْ أَيۡدِيهِمۡ

(If you could but see when the wrongdoers are in the agonies of death, while the angels extend their hands) (6:93). meaning, to beat them.

﴿ أَخۡرِجُوٓاْ أَنفُسَڪُمُ‌ۖ ٱلۡيَوۡمَ تُجۡزَوۡنَ عَذَابَ ٱلۡهُونِ بِمَا كُنتُمۡ تَقُولُونَ عَلَى ٱللَّهِ غَيۡرَ ٱلۡحَقِّ وَكُنتُمۡ عَنۡ ءَايَـٰتِهِۦ تَسۡتَكۡبِرُونَ

((saying): "Deliver your souls! This day you will be recompensed with the torment of degradation because of what you used to utter against Allah other than the truth, and because you used to arrogantly reject His signs.'') (6:93) Because of the above, Allah says,

﴿ ذَٲلِكَ بِأَنَّهُمُ ٱتَّبَعُواْ مَآ أَسۡخَطَ ٱللَّهَ وَڪَرِهُواْ رِضۡوَٲنَهُ ۥ فَأَحۡبَطَ أَعۡمَـٰلَهُمۡ

(That is because they pursued what angered Allah and disliked what earns His pleasure, so He rendered their deeds worthless.)

﴿ أَمۡ حَسِبَ ٱلَّذِينَ فِى قُلُوبِهِم مَّرَضٌ أَن لَّن يُخۡرِجَ ٱللَّهُ أَضۡغَـٰنَہُمۡ وَلَوۡ نَشَآءُ لَأَرَيۡنَـٰكَهُمۡ فَلَعَرَفۡتَهُم بِسِيمَـٰهُمۡ‌ۚ وَلَتَعۡرِفَنَّهُمۡ فِى لَحۡنِ ٱلۡقَوۡلِ‌ۚ وَٱللَّهُ يَعۡلَمُ أَعۡمَـٰلَكُمۡ وَلَنَبۡلُوَنَّكُمۡ حَتَّىٰ نَعۡلَمَ ٱلۡمُجَـٰهِدِينَ مِنكُمۡ وَٱلصَّـٰبِرِينَ وَنَبۡلُوَاْ أَخۡبَارَكُمۡ

(29. Or do those in whose hearts is a disease, think that Allah will not expose their ill--wills) (30. Had We so willed, We could have shown them clearly to you, so that you would know them by their marks; but you will know them by the tone of their speech! And Allah knows (all) your deeds.) (31. And We will surely, try you until We know those who strive among you and the patient, and We will put to a test all your affairs.)