In these study notes of Tafseer Quran English for Al Baqarah 6-7, we are going to look at ٱلۡمَغۡضُوبِ those who earned Allah’s anger. There are people who do not have faith in Allah, they do not establish Salah, they do not share anything with others, they have no respect for the previous Prophets and they don’t worry about the hereafter. A warning is of no use for those who reject faith.
إِنَّ ٱلَّذِينَ كَفَرُواْ سَوَآءٌ عَلَيۡهِمۡ ءَأَنذَرۡتَهُمۡ أَمۡ لَمۡ تُنذِرۡهُمۡ لَا يُؤۡمِنُونَ
6. Indeed, those who disbelieve, it is all the same for them whether you warn them or do not warn them, they will not believe.
ٱلۡمَغۡضُوبِ Those who earned Allah’s anger. In Tafseer Al Fatiha 1-7 ٱلۡمَغۡضُوبِ were mentioned. This is referring to those who had knowledge but did not implement the knowledge.
These people are completely opposite to the لِّلۡمُتَّقِينَ the believers. We discussed the mutaqeen in the previous lesson, Tafseer Al Baqarah 1 – 5 They are the complete opposite to those who disbelieve, Allah says:
إِنَّ ٱلَّذِينَ كَفَرُواْ indeed those who disbelieve.
كَفَرُواْ Kafir, what does it mean?
• To deny the truth
• To hide or cover the truth
A farmer in arabic refers to kafir because he hides the seeds in the earth, so anyone who hides something is kafir.
Is Kafir a swear word?
No, Kafir means disbeliever, the one who hides the truth, one who does not recognize the truth.
The truth is so obvious. We cannot deny the sun, the light it gives, the heat it brings. It’s a method of simple thinking and easy to understand that there is a Creator. When you see this creation what comes to mind is that there must be a creator. We benefit from all that Allah has created. The sun, the universe, the skies, the earth and all that is on it and yet we still don’t appreciate, we don’t praise him, we are not grateful, he has created it all just for our benefit.
At the time of the Prophet (saw) there were many who denied the truth; from among them were:-
- The Quraish, they were from the tribe of the Prophet (saw).
- The people of the Book
- The hypocrites, the munafiqeen,
Allah says about them
سَوَآءٌ it is the same
عَلَيۡهِمۡ upon them
ءَأَنذَرۡتَهُمۡ whether you warn them
أَمۡ لَمۡ تُنذِرۡهُمۡ or you do not warn them
لَا يُؤۡمِنُونَ they are not going to believe
Either way, they are not going to listen, and they are not going to believe, they will not change.
ءَأَنذَرۡتَهُمۡ is to warn them.
To warn them about what? the punishment in the hereafter.
What kind of warning is ءَأَنذَرۡ?
It is a warning given with care and affection out of love. The Prophet (saw) said when he called the people of Mecca together to give them the message of Islam, he said, I am a Warner for you against the severest warning.
This warning of the Messengers is out of love, out of affection. The Prophet wants them to believe but they are not listening. So Allah is telling the Prophet (saw) ءَأَنذَرۡتَهُمۡ أَمۡ لَمۡ تُنذِرۡهُمۡ لَا يُؤۡمِنُونَ whether you warn them or you don’t warn them, it will not make a difference.
Only Allah knows the conditions of a person’s heart, we should still fulfil our responsibilities and warn a person. The Prophet (saw) he continued to warn them, but guidance is in the hands of Allah.
خَتَمَ ٱللَّهُ عَلَىٰ قُلُوبِهِمۡ وَعَلَىٰ سَمۡعِهِمۡۖ وَلَهُمۡ عَذَابٌ عَظِيمٌ۬
7. Allah has set a seal upon their hearts and upon their hearing, and over their vision is a veil. And for them is a great punishment.
خَتَمَ ٱللَّهُ عَلَىٰ قُلُوبِهِمۡ وَعَلَىٰ سَمۡعِهِمۡۖ Allah has sealed their hearts and their hearing.
Abu Huraira reported Allah’s Messenger (saw) as saying, no child is born but upon the fitra (Islam), it is his parents that make him a Jew or a Christian or a Madian, (Bukhari & Muslim).
Every child is born upon the fitra which is the natural inclination to worship Allah. The fitra is to be born a Muslim. This hadith reveals that people are influenced by their environment because it says the parents make him a Christian or a Jew or a Madian which shows people are influenced and conditioned in their belief by the environment that they live in. Because of this conditioning, they cannot take in the Haqq (truth); just like the time of the Prophet (saw) people had been conditioned to believe a certain way and many could not take the Haqq what he brought to them.
Why is it that Allah says that these people their hearts are sealed, whether you warn them or not, they won’t listen?
They are comfortable in their environment, It is convenient for them. They have many advantages in living the way that they do. Their forefathers had been practising the same lifestyle generation after generation, to break away from that would take a brave step, they don’t want to come out of their comfortable environment.
The truth is presented and yet they refuse to accept it, they refuse to even listen. Allah seals their hearts and then they no longer have the ability to receive that guidance.
Emaan (belief) and taqwa (God-consciousness ) are in the heart, the same with kafir (disbelief). It is something that begins in the heart, we perceive from the heart, we believe from the heart, we feel from the heart.
First Allah mentions that their hearts are sealed, then their hearing is sealed. They can hear but they don’t want to listen, it is of no interest to them, those who disbelieve they don’t want to know what is being said, they might hear it but they don’t take it in.
Their hearts are sealed. it’s just like sealing an airtight container, once you fill it with something and seal it shut, nothing will come out and nothing will go in, not even air.
وَعَلَىٰٓ أَبۡصَـٰرِهِمۡ غِشَـٰوَةٌ۬ and upon their eyes is a veil
Over their vision, there is a veil of
- their own desires
- their own stubbornness
- their own egos
These things become a barrier; they become a veil from seeing the truth. Their hearts are sealed, their ears are sealed simply because they don’t use these faculties in the right way.
It’s just like any part of the body if we don’t use it, it becomes weak and we eventually lose the use of it. it is the same for the organs of the heart, the same for the hearing, because they don’t use the heart to perceive the truth, they don’t listen when the truth is shown to them, they don’t see when the truth is before them, then those faculties are weakened and that is the sealing of the heart.
It does not mean that people are literally walking around with a veil over their eyes, these are people whose eyes are working perfectly fine, everything is working in perfect order, but they cannot see the truth. They see the world, they see the universe, they see everything that Allah has created, everything that he nourishes, but they don’t see the Rabb of the Alameen, they don’t see the Lord the creator of everything.
Disbelief is of Different Types
The first thing that people who commit kufr deny is the unseen
Those who have taqwa, have belief in the unseen and hereafter – their concept regarding the hereafter is very clear, whereas those who commit kufr the disbelievers have a very vague concept of the hereafter, they cant tell you what the hereafter is about, what is going to be there, what is going to happen, what are the stages in the hereafter, what is the questioning going to be.
Believers have to believe in the Unseen.
- Belief in Allah
- Belief in the Messengers of Allah
- Belief in the Revelations that he sent down
- Belief in the Angels
- Belief in the Day of Judgment
- Belief in destiny – Good or Bad
- Belief in Resurrection after Death
As Muslims, these are the things which we must believe. If we were to put aside any of them, for example, to say I do not believe in the Messengers, or I don’t believe in the Angels, we would be committing kufr, it would be an act of disbelief. To even deny one of these things is an act of disbelief. There are two types of disbelief:-
Major Disbelief & Minor Disbelief
If anyone performs any of these major types of kufr then they will be out of the folds of Islam.
1. Kufr of Denial/rejection. This is when a person denies the existence of Allah and all articles of faith.
The example that the Quran gives of Pharaoh, he denied with his heart and with his tongue. He denied the existence of God verbally and also in his heart he denied the existence of God until the last minute when the angel of death came to him, by then it was too late, everything was before him the hereafter was in front of him.
- Disbelief in action. An example of this is to not establish the prayer or not pay zakat
The Prophet (saw) said, whoever has left the prayer deliberately has surely denied.
2. Kufr of Arrogance. The person knows it is the truth yet he denies.
Like the shaytan, he knows the truth but he rejected it, those who have the belief in their heart but they deny with their tongue, Iblees, Shaytan who recognizes the truth but he denied it despite that.
Abu Talib the Uncle of the Prophet (saw), he recognized the truth but he did not verbally say the shahada, he did not verbally accept Islam.
3. Kufr of Doubt/Suspicion. If you asked this person he would have doubts and say he was not sure.
4. Kufer of Turning Away. A clear sign is in front of a person, he sees the truth and he turns his face away from it.
5. Kufer of hypocrisy. They did not accept it in their heart but verbally they declared their belief.
This is referring to the hypocrites who did not accept the truth in their hearts but verbally they said that they believed. An example is Abdullah bin Oubay who was one of the hypocrites in Madina, he did not accept it in his heart but verbally he said he was a believer and that he was with the Muslims.
If anyone performs any of these they will not be taken out of the folds of Islam because it is a minor type but still, a person should avoid this.
- Ungratefulness, ingratitude. A person has many blessings but he complains, and when he does this he is being ungrateful to Allah.
- Riya, showing off. A person who shows off his acts of worship for others to see. For example, standing in salah so that people will see him in order that they will get praise.
These qualities go against the qualities we looked at of the mutaqeen who believe in the unseen. This type of kufr rejects the unseen. We can see the contrast between the two, where one affirms and acts upon something the other denies and does not act.
And Allah says for the disbelievers وَ لَهُمۡ عَذَابٌ عَظِيمٌ۬ and for them, there is a great punishment.
For those who deny and who cover the truth, they will have a great punishment and this includes both mental and physical torture. This punishment will be great in size and also great in intensity.