English Translation and Commentary of the Holy Quran (2010)

by Maulana Muhammad Ali

Chapter 48: Al-Fath — The Victory (Revealed at Madinah: 4 sections, 29 verses)

Section 1 (Verses 48:1–48:10): Hudaibiyah Truce was a Victory

Translation:

بِسۡمِ اللّٰہِ الرَّحۡمٰنِ الرَّحِیۡمِ

In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful.

اِنَّا فَتَحۡنَا لَکَ فَتۡحًا مُّبِیۡنًا ۙ﴿۱﴾

48:1 Surely We have granted you a clear victory,1

لِّیَغۡفِرَ لَکَ اللّٰہُ مَا تَقَدَّمَ مِنۡ ذَنۡۢبِکَ وَ مَا تَاَخَّرَ وَ یُتِمَّ نِعۡمَتَہٗ عَلَیۡکَ وَ یَہۡدِیَکَ صِرَاطًا مُّسۡتَقِیۡمًا ۙ﴿۲﴾

48:2 that Allah may cover for you your (alleged) shortcomings in the past and those to come,2 and complete His favour to you and guide you on a right path,3

وَّ یَنۡصُرَکَ اللّٰہُ نَصۡرًا عَزِیۡزًا ﴿۳﴾

48:3 and that Allah may help you with a mighty help.4

ہُوَ الَّذِیۡۤ اَنۡزَلَ السَّکِیۡنَۃَ فِیۡ قُلُوۡبِ الۡمُؤۡمِنِیۡنَ لِیَزۡدَادُوۡۤا اِیۡمَانًا مَّعَ اِیۡمَانِہِمۡ ؕ وَ لِلّٰہِ جُنُوۡدُ السَّمٰوٰتِ وَ الۡاَرۡضِ ؕ وَ کَانَ اللّٰہُ عَلِیۡمًا حَکِیۡمًا ۙ﴿۴﴾

48:4 He it is Who sent down tranquillity into the hearts of the believers that they might add faith to their faith. And Allah’s are the forces of the heavens and the earth, and Allah is ever Knowing, Wise —

لِّیُدۡخِلَ الۡمُؤۡمِنِیۡنَ وَ الۡمُؤۡمِنٰتِ جَنّٰتٍ تَجۡرِیۡ مِنۡ تَحۡتِہَا الۡاَنۡہٰرُ خٰلِدِیۡنَ فِیۡہَا وَ یُکَفِّرَ عَنۡہُمۡ سَیِّاٰتِہِمۡ ؕ وَ کَانَ ذٰلِکَ عِنۡدَ اللّٰہِ فَوۡزًا عَظِیۡمًا ۙ﴿۵﴾

48:5 that He may make the believers, men and women, enter Gardens in which rivers flow, to abide in them, and remove from them their evil. And that is a mighty achievement with Allah,

وَّ یُعَذِّبَ الۡمُنٰفِقِیۡنَ وَ الۡمُنٰفِقٰتِ وَ الۡمُشۡرِکِیۡنَ وَ الۡمُشۡرِکٰتِ الظَّآنِّیۡنَ بِاللّٰہِ ظَنَّ السَّوۡءِ ؕ عَلَیۡہِمۡ دَآئِرَۃُ السَّوۡءِ ۚ وَ غَضِبَ اللّٰہُ عَلَیۡہِمۡ وَ لَعَنَہُمۡ وَ اَعَدَّ لَہُمۡ جَہَنَّمَ ؕ وَ سَآءَتۡ مَصِیۡرًا ﴿۶﴾

48:6 and (that) He may punish the hypocrites, men and women, and the idolaters, men and women, who entertain evil thoughts about Allah. On them is the evil turn, and Allah is furious with them and has cursed them and prepared hell for them; and evil is the destination.

وَ لِلّٰہِ جُنُوۡدُ السَّمٰوٰتِ وَ الۡاَرۡضِ ؕ وَ کَانَ اللّٰہُ عَزِیۡزًا حَکِیۡمًا ﴿۷﴾

48:7 And Allah’s are the forces of the heavens and the earth; and Allah is ever Mighty, Wise.

اِنَّاۤ اَرۡسَلۡنٰکَ شَاہِدًا وَّ مُبَشِّرًا وَّ نَذِیۡرًا ۙ﴿۸﴾

48:8 Surely We have sent you as a witness and as a bearer of good news and as a warner,

لِّتُؤۡمِنُوۡا بِاللّٰہِ وَ رَسُوۡلِہٖ وَ تُعَزِّرُوۡہُ وَ تُوَقِّرُوۡہُ ؕ وَ تُسَبِّحُوۡہُ بُکۡرَۃً وَّ اَصِیۡلًا ﴿۹﴾

48:9 that you (people) may believe in Allah and His Messenger and may aid him and revere him. And (that) you may declare His glory, morning and evening.

اِنَّ الَّذِیۡنَ یُبَایِعُوۡنَکَ اِنَّمَا یُبَایِعُوۡنَ اللّٰہَ ؕ یَدُ اللّٰہِ فَوۡقَ اَیۡدِیۡہِمۡ ۚ فَمَنۡ نَّکَثَ فَاِنَّمَا یَنۡکُثُ عَلٰی نَفۡسِہٖ ۚ وَ مَنۡ اَوۡفٰی بِمَا عٰہَدَ عَلَیۡہُ اللّٰہَ فَسَیُؤۡتِیۡہِ اَجۡرًا عَظِیۡمًا ﴿٪۱۰﴾

48:10 Those who swear allegiance to you only swear allegiance to Allah. The hand of Allah is above their hands. So whoever breaks (his faith), he breaks it only to his soul’s detriment. And whoever fulfils his covenant with Allah, He will grant him a mighty reward.5

Commentary:

  1. The victory referred to is that gained by the truce at Hudaibiyah in 6 A.H. The truce was a victory for the Muslims because it opened the way for the propagation of Islam, and by putting a stop to hostilities gave the opponents an occasion to ponder over the merits of the religion against which they had hitherto struggled on the field of battle. As a result of this truce large numbers came over to Islam, and the words are thus prophetical, and their truth was demonstrated long after their revelation. The conditions of the truce to which Muslims yielded were disadvantageous to them, one being that if anyone from among the people of Makkah came over to the Holy Prophet, he would return him to the Quraish, though he were a Muslim, while the Quraish were not bound to return anyone who deserted the Prophet and joined the Quraish. The Muslims felt it very hard that one of their brethren should be returned to suffer persecution, but as the Quraish refused to make a truce unless this condition was included, the Holy Prophet accepted it. Immediately afterwards Divine revelation dispelled all those misgivings, and declared the truce to be a great victory, as it actually proved to be.
  2. The word dhanb means any shortcoming, not necessarily a sin, and dhanbi-ka here does not mean your sin but the sin committed against you or the shortcoming attributed to you. The Prophet never committed a sin and the word ghafr here means covering or protecting against the commission of sins; see 40:55 footnote. These were the shortcomings attributed to the Prophet by his enemies, among his contemporaries and those who were yet to come after him. Despite the fact that the Prophet was respected throughout Arabia for his righteousness and truthfulness before he laid claim to prophethood, the twenty years of opposition to the Truth which he brought had poisoned the minds of the Arabs to such an extent that they now drew a very dark picture of him, heaping all kinds of abuses on him. The battles that were now being fought had, further, made it impossible for the Muslims to present a true picture of Islam to the Arabs. After several years of conflict, the Hudaibiyah truce brought about a change in the relations of the two parties and the truth about the Prophet now began to dawn on their minds. They now saw that the Prophet was not the man of terror as their leaders had pictured to them. They saw the great transformation which he had wrought and the life which he had infused into a dead nation. It was in this sense that God covered the short­comings and failures which his opponents attributed to him. In the words those to come, there is a reference to the latter-day criticism of the enemies of Islam and a promise here that not only would those misunder­standings which already existed be corrected, but even those that would be spread at a later date by the enemies of Islam would also be dispelled, and Islam would thus shine in its full lustre not only in Arabia but in the whole world.
  3. The completion of favours was accomplished by the spread of Islam, and the guiding on the right path signified the right way to success.
  4. Large numbers becoming converts to Islam proved a mighty help in its cause. While proceeding to Hudaibiyah the Holy Prophet was accompanied by 1,500 men; two years later, when advancing on Makkah, 10,000 men marched under his banner, which shows how fast Islam spread after the Hudaibiyah truce.
  5. The swearing of allegiance referred to here took place before the truce was concluded. The Holy Prophet had started with his men with the object of performing a pilgrimage, but when he reached Hudaibiyah, the Makkans opposed his entry into Makkah. Thereupon the companions of the Holy Prophet swore allegiance to him (under a tree as stated in v. 18), that they would defend him at all costs and die fighting at his side (Bukhari, 64:37). The necessity for this seems to have arisen from the fact that the Quraish advanced to fight the Muslims, who were unprepared for war.

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