In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful
Tafseer Surah an-Nisa Ayah 64
Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala begins ayah 64 by stating a universal Divine principle,
وَمَآ أَرْسَلْنَا مِن رَّسُولٍ إلاَّ لِيُطَاعَ
“We sent no Messenger, but to be obeyed” It means that any Messenger who was sent by Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala was sent so that everyone obeys the rules set by him in accordance with the will and command of Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala. In that case, the inevitable consequence will be that anyone who opposes the rules set by the Messenger will be dealt with in the manner disbelievers are dealt with. Therefore, whatever Umar radhiAllahu ‘anhu did turned out to be correct.
“by Allah’s leave” means, “None shall obey, except by My leave,” according to Mujahid. This Ayah indicates that the prophets are only obeyed by whomever Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala directs to obedience.
Following this appears an advice in the best interest of the hypocrites indicating that they would have done better if, rather than indulging in false oaths and interpretations, they would have confessed their error and presented themselves before him seeking forgiveness from Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala, and the Messenger too prayed for their forgiveness, then, Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala would have certainly accepted their repentance.
وَلَوْ أَنَّهُمْ إِذ ظَّلَمُواْ أَنفُسَهُمْ جَآءُوكَ فَاسْتَغْفَرُواْ اللَّهَ وَاسْتَغْفَرَ لَهُمُ الرَّسُولُ لَوَجَدُواْ اللَّهَ تَوَّاباً رَّحِيماً
“And if, when they wronged themselves, they had come to you, [O Muhammad], and asked forgiveness of Allah and the Messenger had asked forgiveness for them, they would have found Allah Accepting of repentance and Merciful.”
At this place, for the repentance to be acceptable, two things have been made binding: That they present themselves before the Prophet salAllahu aalyhi wa sallam and that he then prays for their forgiveness. Perhaps, the first reason is that they violated the great station of Prophethood bestowed by Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala on His Messenger salAllahu aalyhi wa sallam and caused him undue pain by disregarding the decision given by him. So, in order that their repentance over their crime becomes acceptable, the condition that they present themselves before the Prophet salAllahu aalyhi wa sallam and that he prays for their forgiveness was imposed on them.
Although, ayah 64 was revealed in the background of a particular incident relating to the hypocrites, yet its words yield a general ruling which stipulates that anyone who presents himself before the Prophet salAllahu aalyhi wa sallam and the Prophet prays for his forgiveness he will definitely be forgiven.