Al-Maidah · Juz 6 · Qur'an Tafseer

Tafseer Surah al-Ma’idah Ayah 42

Describing the characteristics of the hypocrites Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala says,

سَمَّـعُونَ لِلْكَذِبِ أَكَّـلُونَ لِلسُّحْتِ

“They (like to) listen to falsehood, to devour Suht.”

The hypocrites love hearing and reading falsehood.

Sometimes we are so engrossed in political talk shows and gossip magazines that we waste three hours listening to or reading falsehood. We all know most of the things shared are false, yet we are hooked to these shows and magazines. After watching the program or reading the magazine, we discuss it with our friends or family. Another hour or so is wasted on reviewing falsehood. Is our life so cheap to waste it on falsehood? We could have done something productive during this time.

The hypocrites devour what is forbidden.

The word suht is used for haram wealth. Any wealth acquired through unlawful means. When a person earns haram, he is selling off his emaan. Haram is devoid of any barakah or blessing.

The scholars of Bani Israel made lot of money by altering the law of Allah. the punishment for adultery in Torah was rajam, stoning to death. But when a wealthy man committed this act, this punishment was not carried out. The scholars would give the ruling of fifty lashes and riding a donkey with face backwards. The person’s face was painted black. This became the source of income for the scholars; issuing incorrect fatwas and earning haram money.

Qatadah said that suht refers to bribe – the money given to make the impermissible permissible.

Now, the Prophet sallAllahu aalyhi wa sallam is being addressed:

فَإِن جَآءوكَ فَاحْكُمْ بَيْنَهُمْ أَوْ أَعْرِضْ عَنْهُمْ وَإِن تُعْرِضْ عَنْهُمْ فَلَن يَضُرُّوكَ شَيْئاً وَإِنْ حَكَمْتَ فَاحْكُم بَيْنَهُم بِالْقِسْطِ إِنَّ اللَّهَ يُحِبُّ الْمُقْسِطِينَ

“So if they come to you, either judge between them, or turn away from them. If you turn away from them, they cannot hurt you in the least. And if you judge, judge with justice between them. Verily, Allah loves those who act justly.”

The choice was given to the Prophet whether to judge between these people who enjoy falsehood and devour haram wealth or not to judge. If he chooses not to judge then he should know that these people can’t harm him.

Similarly, in our lives sometimes people come to us and seek our advice. Sometimes, the truth is that they are not here to seek our advice but just finding a way out or seeking a fatwa in their favor. Depending on the situation, we have the right to refuse. If we see that the person is here only to find a loophole, he doesn’t intend to acquire knowledge; we don’t waste our time on such people. Some people have this problem, when they are told to do something they don’t do it. But keep coming back to you again and again with the same question.

If we choose to give our opinion or advice, then we should say that which is right. Allah loves those who are just.


– An emphasis has been made on wasting our time in falsehood. Near Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala it is a reprehensible act.

– There’s warning to those who earning their living from haram sources.

– The judge has the choice whether to judge between people or not to judge between them. If he sees there’s benefit between people, he takes out time to judge. But if he sees the people are here only to waste his time, he has the right to refuse judgment.

– When a judgment is made, it should be based on justice. Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala likes those who act with justice.


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