Al-Baqarah · Juz 1 · Qur'an Tafseer

Tafseer Al-Baqarah Ayaat 89-92

بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَـنِ الرَّحِيمِ

In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful

Ayaat 89-90 the Wait and Denial of the Prophet


Before coming of the Prophet ﷺ the Jews used to invoke Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala to send the promised prophet who could save them from the war-mongering Arab pagans.

They used to tell the polytheists, “A Prophet shall be sent just before the end of this world and we, along with him, shall exterminate you, just as the nations of ‘Ad and Iram were exterminated.” They would say, “O Allah! Send the Prophet that we read about in the Torah so that we can torment and kill the disbelievers alongside him.” When Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala sent the promised prophet and they saw that he was not one of them (he was an Arab), they rejected him and envied the Arabs, even though they knew that he was the Messenger of Allah. They claimed that he has not brought anything that we recognize.

In reply to this, Mu’adh ibn Jabl and Bishr ibn Al-Bara’ bin Ma’rur radhiAllahu ‘anhum used to say, “O Jews! Fear Allah and embrace Islam. You used to invoke Allah for the coming of Muhammad () when we were still disbelievers and you used to tell us that he would come and describe him to us.”

The promised prophet (Muhammad ﷺ) had brought a Book (the Qur’an) from Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala that carried tales about the Jews and confirmed what was in the Torah, yet they refused to accept him because he was an Arab and not from their lineage. Because of such an attitude Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala said,

فَلَعْنَةُ اللَّهِ عَلَى الْكَـفِرِينَ

“So let the curse of Allah be on the disbelievers.”

Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala says, “How bad is that for which they have sold their own selves…” meaning for a paltry gain of this world, they sold the truth for falsehood. They knew that indeed Muhammad ﷺ was the promised prophet and the Book (Qur’an) he has brought confirmed their Torah, yet they hid the truth about him and told the people that he was not the promised one.

A question might arise why the Rabbis rejected him? It was because of their arrogance, stubbornness, and hatred. They considered the Arabs illiterate while held high opinions about themselves. They argued since the Last Messenger is not from them, unlike the earlier prophets, they are not going to believe in him. They chose to disbelieve in him and what he brought (i.e. the Qur’an) going against their earlier covenant with Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala of believing in and supporting the Last Messenger. This behavior of theirs is the result of their injustice, envy, and hatred, as Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala says, “…grudging that Allah should reveal of His grace unto whom He wills of His servants.” There is no envy worse than this, therefore, they have drawn on themselves wrath upon wrath.


He who truly seeks guidance does not look at the speaker that what his background is, his skin color, his race and language, how rich or poor he is; rather, he focuses on what is being said and how it benefits him.

Ibn ‘Abbas radhiAllahu ‘anhu commented that Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala became angry with them because they ignored some of the Torah and disbelieved in the Prophet that He sent to them. In the past, as we have read, they have disobeyed their own Prophet Musa (Moses) ‘alayhi salaam, and killed some prophets that were sent to them such as Yahya ‘alayhi salaam, son of Zakariya ‘alayhi salaam, and they attempted to kill ‘Eesa (Jesus) ‘alayhi salaam but he was raised to the heavens before they could reach him. Later, they also attempted to kill Muhammad ﷺ through magic and poison.

Ibn Katheer writes it was because of their constant disobedience and disbelieve that they deserved and acquired multiplied anger. Their transgression and arrogance resulted in their disgrace and humiliation in this world and the Hereafter.

Hindrances in Accepting the Truth:

► Baghi
► Ujb (Self-conceit) – Considering oneself better than others. Accepting only that which suits one’s desires and rejecting that which one dislikes.
► Arrogance
Ghazb – Not accepting something from the other due to a grudge
► Showing-off
Jealousy – Not accepting something because it was done or said by a person that one despises
► Love for wealth
Love for status

Do your self-analysis – when you do not accept other’s opinion what is the reason?

[The Diseases of the Hearts and their Cures by Ibn Taimiyyah]

Imam Ahmad narrated that ‘Amr bin Shu’ayb said that his father said that his grandfather said that the Prophet ﷺ said,

يُحْشَرُ الْمُتَكَبِّرُونَ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ أَمْثَالَ الذَّرِّ فِي صُوَرِ النَّاسِ، يَعْلُوهُمْ كُلُّ شَيْءٍ مِنَ الصِّغَارِ حَتَّى يَدْخُلُوا سِجْنًا فِي جَهَنَّمَ يُقَالُ لَهُ. بَوْلَسُ تَعْلُوهُمْ نَارُ الْأَنْيَارِ يُسْقَونَ مِنْ طِينَةِ الْخَبَالِ عُصَارَةِ أَهْلِ النَّار

“The arrogant people will be gathered on the Day of Resurrection in the size of ants, but in the shape of men. Everything shall be above them, because of the humiliation placed on them, until they enter a prison in Jahannam called ‘Bawlas’ where the fire will surround them from above. They shall drink from the puss of the people of the Fire.”

Ayaat 91-92

Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala highlights another of their wrongdoing, “When it is said to them, ‘Believe in what Allah has revealed,’ they say, ‘We believe [only] in what was revealed to us.” It is as if to say, it is enough for us to believe in what was revealed to us in the Torah and the Injeel, and this is the path that we choose for ourselves.


If that is really the truth, Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala asks, “Then why did you kill the prophets of Allah before, if you are [indeed] believers?”

This means if your claim that you believe in what was revealed to you is true, then why did you kill the Prophets who came to you affirming the Torah’s Law, although you knew they were true Prophets. You killed them simply out of transgression, stubbornness, and injustice with Allah’s Messengers. Therefore, you only follow your lusts, opinions, and desires.

It should be noted that the act of killing the Prophets of Allah was done by the early Jews and not those living in Madina. But they are being reprimanded because they did not consider their forefathers’ act evil. They used to take pride in it.

Prophet Musa ‘alayhi salaam had come to them with clear signs from Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala that he was indeed the messenger of Allah and that there was no deity worthy of worship except Allah, yet they disobeyed the Messenger and took calf as their idol. The clear signs (or miracles) mentioned in the ayah refer to the flood, the locusts, lice, frogs, blood, staff and Musa’s hand. His miracles also include parting of the sea, the shade of the clouds in a desert, the manna and quails, the gushing stone, etc.

Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala calls them Zalimoon for taking a calf as their deity after Musa ‘alayhi salaam went to Mount Tour to speak to Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala. Shirk (associating partners with Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala) is a major sin – a sinner does not commit injustice to others but himself – therefore, they were called Zalimoon i.e. the unjust or the wrongdoers.

DOWNLOAD PDF: Tafseer Al-Baqarah Ayaat 89-92

رَبَّنَا تَقَبَّلْ مِنَّا ۖ إِنَّكَ أَنتَ السَّمِيعُ الْعَلِيم
“Our Lord, accept [this] from us. Indeed You are the Hearing, the Knowing.” [Al-Baqarah 2: 127]

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