Allah says, `just as We have favored you and given you the upright legislation and great (standard of) character,'
(So, do not obey the deniers. They wish that you should compromise with them, so they (too) would compromise with you.) Ibn `Abbas said, "That you would permit them (their idolatry) and they also would permit you (to practice your religion).'' Mujahid said,
(They wish that you should compromise with them, so they (too) would compromise with you.) "This means that you should be quiet about their gods and abandon the truth that you are upon.'' Then Allah says,
(And do not obey every Hallaf (one who swears much) Mahin (liar or worthless person).) This is because the liar, due to his weakness and his disgracefulness, only seeks protection in his false oaths which he boldly swears to while using Allah's Names, and he uses them (false oaths) all the time and out of place (i.e., unnecessarily). Ibn `Abbas said, "Al-Mahin means the liar.'' Then Allah says,
(A Hammaz,) Ibn `Abbas and Qatadah both said, "This is slander.''
(going about with Namim,) This refers to the one who goes around among people instigating discord between them and carrying tales in order to corrupt relations between people when they are good and pleasant. It is confirmed in the Two Sahihs that Mujahid reported from Tawus that Ibn `Abbas said, "The Messenger of Allah once passed by two graves and he said,
(Verily, these two are being punished, and they are not being punished for something major. One of them was not careful about protecting himself from urine (when relieving himself). The other one used to spread Namimah.)'' This Hadith has been recorded by the Group in their books through routes of transmission that are all on the authority of Mujahid. Imam Ahmad recorded that Hudhayfah said, "I heard the Messenger of Allah saying,
(The slanderer will not enter into Paradise.)'' This Hadith has been reported by the Group except for Ibn Majah. Concerning Allah's statement,
(Hinderer of good, transgressor, sinful,) it means, he refuses to give and withholds that which he has of good.
(transgressor,) this means, in attaining that which Allah has made permissible for him, he exceeds the legislated bounds.
(sinful,) meaning, he delves into the forbidden things. Concerning Allah's statement,
(`Utul, and moreover Zanim.) `Utul means one who is cruel, harsh, strong, greedy and stingy. Imam Ahmad recorded from Al-Harithah bin Wahb that the Messenger of Allah said,
(Shall I inform you of the people of Paradise (They will be) every weak and oppressed person. When he swears by Allah, he fulfills his oath. Shall I inform you of the people of the Fire Every `Utul (cruel person), Jawwaz and arrogant person.) Al-Waki` said, "It (`Utul) is every Jawwaz, Ja`zari and arrogant person.'' Both Al-Bukhari and Muslim recorded this in their Two Sahihs, as well as the rest of the Group, except for Abu Dawud. All of its routes of transmission are by way of Sufyan Ath-Thawri and Shu`bah who both reported it from Sa`id bin Khalid. The scholars of Arabic language have said that Ja`zari means rude and harsh, while Jawwaz means greedy and stingy. Concerning the word Zanim, Al-Bukhari recorded from Ibn `Abbas that he said concerning the Ayah,
(`Utul (cruel), and moreover Zanim.) "A man from the Quraysh who stands out among them like the sheep that has had a piece of its ear cut off.'' The meaning of this is that he is famous for his evil just as a sheep that has a piece of its ear cut off stands out among its sister sheep. In the Arabic language the Zanim is a person who is adopted among a group of people (i.e., he is not truly of them). Ibn Jarir and others among the Imams have said this. Concerning Allah's statement,
((He was so) because he had wealth and children. When Our Ayat are recited to him, he says: "Tales of the men of old!'') Allah is saying, `this is how he responds to the favors that Allah has bestowed upon him of wealth and children, by disbelieving in Allah's Ayat and turning away from them while claiming that they are a lie that has been taken from the tales of the ancients.' This is similar to Allah's statement,
(Leave Me alone (to deal) with whom I created lonely (without any wealth and children etc.). And then granted him resources in abundance. And children to be by his side. And made life smooth and comfortable for him. After all that he desires that I should give more. Nay! Verily, he has been opposing Our Ayat. I shall oblige him to face a severe torment! Verily, 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 magic from that of old, this is nothing but the word of a human being!'' I will cast him into Hellfire. And what will make you know what Hellfire is It spares not (any sinner), nor does it leave (anything unburned)! Burning and blackening the skins! Over it are nineteen (angels as keepers of Hell).) (74:11-30) Then Allah said here,
(We shall brand him on the snout!) Ibn Jarir said, "We will make his matter clear and evident so that they will know him and he will not be hidden from them, just as the branding mark on the snouts (of animals).'' Others have said,
(We shall brand him) This is the mark of the people of the Hell-fire; meaning, `We will blacken his face on the Day of Judgment,' and the face has been referred to here as snout.
(17. Verily, We have tried them as We tried the People of the Garden, when they swore to pluck the fruits in the morning,) (18. Without (saying: "If Allah wills.'')) (19. Then there passed over it a Ta'if from your Lord while they were asleep.) (20. So by the morning, it became like As-Sarim.) (21. Then they called out (one to another as soon) as the morning broke.) (22. Saying: "Go to your tilth in the morning, if you would pluck (the fruits).'') (23. So they departed, and they were whispering:) (24. "No poor person shall enter upon you into it today.'') (25. And they went in the morning with Hard Qadirin.) (26. But when they saw it, they said: "Verily, we have gone astray.'') (27. "Nay! Indeed we are deprived!'') (28. The Awsat among them said; "Did I not tell you, `Why do you not Tusabbihun.''')29. They said: "Glory to Our Lord! Verily, we have been wrongdoers.'') (30. Then they turned one against another, blaming.) (31. They said: "Woe to us! Verily, we were Taghin.'') (32. "We hope that our Lord will give us in exchange better than it. Truly, we hope in our Lord.'') (33. Such is the punishment, but truly, the punishment of the Hereafter is greater if they but knew.)
This is a parable that Allah made of the behavior of the Quraysh disbelievers with the great mercy, and tremendous favors He granted them. The mercy and favor of sending of Muhammad to them. But they met him with denial, rejection and opposition. Therefore Allah says,
(Verily, We have tried them) meaning, `We have tested them.'
(as We tried the People of the Garden,) This refers to a garden containing different types of fruits and vegetation.
(when they swore to pluck the fruits of the (garden) in the morning,) meaning, they vowed between themselves during the night that they would pluck the fruit of the garden in the morning so that poor and the beggars would not know what they were doing. In this way they would be able to keep its fruit for themselves and not give any of it in charity.
(Without (saying: "If Allah wills.'')) meaning their vow that they made. Therefore, Allah broke their vow. He then said,
(Then there passed over it a Ta'if from your Lord while they were asleep. ) meaning, it was afflicted with some heavenly destruction.
(So by the morning it became like As-Sarim.) Ibn `Abbas said, "Like the dark night.'' Ath-Thawri and As-Suddi both said, "Like the crop when it is harvested withered and dry.''
(Then they called out (one to another as soon) as the morning broke.) meaning, when it was (early) morning time they called each other so that they could go together to pick the harvest or cut it (its fruits). Then Allah said,
((Saying:) "Go to your tilth in the morning, if you would pluck (the fruits).'') meaning, `if you want to pluck your harvest fruit.'
(So they departed, and they were whispering:) meaning, they spoke privately about what they were doing so that no one could hear what they were saying. Then Allah, the All-Knower of secrets and private discussions, explained what they were saying in private. He said,
(So they departed, and they were whispering: "No poor person shall enter upon you into it today.'') meaning, some of them said to others, "Do not allow any poor person to enter upon you in it (the garden) today.'' Allah then said,
(And they went in the morning with Hard) meaning, with strength and power.
(Qadirin) meaning, they thought they had power to do what they claimed and what they were desiring.
(But when they saw it, they said: "Verily, we have gone astray.'') meaning, when they arrived at it and came upon it, and it was in the condition which Allah changed from that luster, brilliance and abundance of fruit, to being black, gloomy and void of any benefit. They believed that they had been mistaken in the path they took in walking to it. This is why they said,
(Verily, we have gone astray.) meaning, `we have walked down a path other than the one we were seeking to reach it.' This was said by Ibn `Abbas and others. Then they changed their minds and realized with certainty that it was actually the correct path. Then they said,
(Nay! Indeed we are deprived (of the fruits)!) meaning, `nay, this is it, but we have no portion and no share (of harvest).'
(The Awsat among them said,) Ibn `Abbas, Mujahid, Sa`id bin Jubayr, `Ikrimah, Muhammad bin Ka`b, Ar-Rabi` bin Anas, Ad-Dahhak and Qatadah all said, "This means the most just of them and the best of them.''
(Did I not tell you, `Why do you not Tusabbihun') Mujahid, As-Suddi and Ibn Jurayj all said that,
(Why do you not Tusabbihun) this means "why do you not say, `If Allah wills''' As-Suddi said, "Their making exception due to the will of Allah in that time was by glorifying Allah (Tasbih).'' Ibn Jarir said, "It is a person's saying, `If Allah wills.''' It has also been said that it means that the best of them said to them, "Did I not tell you, why don't you glorify Allah and thank Him for what He has given you and favored you with''
(They said: "Glory to Our Lord! Verily, we have been wrongdoers.'') They became obedient when it was of no benefit to them, and they were remorseful and confessed when it was not of any use. Then they said,
("...Verily, we have been wrongdoers.'' Then they turned one against another, blaming.) meaning, they started blaming each other for what they had resolved to do, preventing the poor people from receiving their right of the harvested fruit. Thus, their response to each other was only to confess their error and sin.
(They said: "Woe to us! Verily, we were Taghin.'') meaning, `we have transgressed, trespassed, violated and exceeded the bounds until what this happened to us.'
(We hope that our Lord will give us in exchange better than it. Truly, we hope in our Lord.) It has been said, "They were hoping for something better in exchange in this life.'' It has also been said, "They were hoping for its reward in the abode of the Hereafter.'' And Allah knows best. Some of the Salaf mentioned that these people were from Yemen. Sa`id bin Jubayr said, "They were from a village that was called Darawan which was six miles from San`a' (in Yemen). '' It has also been said, "They were from the people of Ethiopia whose father had left them this garden, and they were from the People of the Book. Their father used to handle the garden in a good way. Whatever he reaped from it he would put it back into the garden as it needed, and he would save some of it as food for his dependants for the year, and he would give away the excess in charity. Then, when he died, and his children inherited the garden they said, `Verily, our father was foolish for giving some of this garden's harvest to the poor. If we prevent them from it, then we will have more.' So when they made up their minds to do this they were punished with what was contrary to their plan. Allah took away all of what they possessed of wealth, gain and charity. Nothing remained for them.'' Allah then says,
(Such is the punishment,) meaning, such is the punishment of whoever opposes the command of Allah, is stingy with what Allah has given him and favored him with, withholds the right of the poor and needy, and responds to Allah's blessings upon him with ungratefulness (or disbelief).
(but truly, the punishment of the Hereafter is greater if they but knew.) meaning, this is the punishment in this life, as you have heard, and the punishment of the Hereafter is even harder.
(34. Verily, for those who have Taqwa are Gardens of Delight with their Lord.) (35. Shall We then treat the Muslims like the criminals) (36. What is the matter with you How judge you) (37. Or have you a Book wherein you learn,) (38. That you shall therein have all that you choose) (39. Or have you oaths from Us, lasting until the Day of Judgment, that yours will be what you judge) (40. Ask them, which of them will stand as surety for that!) (41. Or have they "partners'' Then let them bring their "partners'' if they are truthful!)
(42. The Day when the Shin shall be laid bare and they shall be called to prostrate themselves, but they shall not be able to do so.) (43. Their eyes will be cast down and ignominy will cover them; they used to be called to prostrate themselves, while they were.) (44. Then leave Me alone with whoever denies this narration. We shall punish them gradually from directions they perceive not.) (45. And I will grant them a respite. Verily, My plan is strong.) (46. Or is it that you ask them a wage, so that they are heavily burdened with debt) (47. Or that the Unseen is in their hands, so that they can write it down)