English Translation and Commentary of the Holy Quran (2010)

by Maulana Muhammad Ali

Chapter 9: Al-Baraat — The Immunity (Revealed at Madinah: 16 sections, 129 verses)

Section 12 (Verses 9:90–9:99): The Hypocrites

Translation:

9:90 And the defaulters from among the dwellers of the desert came that permission might be given to them, and they sat (at home) who lied to Allah and His Messenger. A painful punishment will afflict those of them who disbelieve.
9:91 No blame lies on the weak, nor on the sick, nor on those who can find nothing to spend, if they are sincere to Allah and His Messenger. There is no way (to blame) against the doers of good. And Allah is Forgiving, Merciful —
9:92 nor on those to whom, when they came to you that you should carry them, you said: I cannot find anything on which to carry you.1 They went back, their eyes overflowing with tears of grief that they could not find anything to spend.
9:93 The way (to blame) is only against those who ask permission of you, though they are rich. They have chosen to be with those who remained behind; and Allah has sealed their hearts, so they do not know.
Part 119:94 They will make excuses to you when you return to them. Say: Make no excuse, we shall not believe you; Allah has informed us of matters relating to you. And Allah and His Messenger will now see your actions, then you will be brought back to the Knower of the unseen and the seen, then He will inform you of what you did.2
9:95 They will swear by Allah to you, when you return to them, so that you may leave them alone. So leave them alone.3 Surely they are unclean and their refuge is hell — a recompense for what they earned.
9:96 They will swear to you that you may be pleased with them. But if you are pleased with them, yet surely Allah is not pleased with the transgressing people.
9:97 The dwellers of the desert are hardest in disbelief and hypocrisy, and most disposed not to know the limits of what Allah has revealed to His Messenger. And Allah is Knowing, Wise.
9:98 And some of the dwellers of the desert take what they spend to be a fine,4 and they wait for an evil turn of fortune for you. On them is the evil turn. And Allah is Hearing, Knowing.
9:99 And some of the dwellers of the desert believe in Allah and the Last Day, and consider what they spend and the prayers of the Messenger as bringing them nearer to Allah. Surely they bring them nearer (to Allah); Allah will admit them into His mercy. Surely Allah is Forgiving, Merciful.

Commentary:

  1. What they wanted in order to join the expedition, and what the Holy Prophet could not find for them, were beasts on which they should be carried, along with their provisions and necessaries. See also 19:27 footnote 1.
  2. Evidently these verses were revealed when the Holy Prophet was away from Madinah, and the statements made in them are therefore prophetical, being exactly fulfilled on his return.
  3. On his return from Tabūk, the Holy Prophet forbade Muslims to have any relations with the hypocrites.
  4. The hypocrites had to contribute something for the sake of appear­ance; they also paid the zakāt so that they might be treated as Muslims.

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