Allah's Prophets are aided by Victory in Times of Distress and Need
Written by Ibn Kathir   
Friday, 10 November 2006

Allah's Prophets are aided by Victory in Times of Distress and Need

Allah states that He sends His aid and support to His Messengers, peace be upon them, when distress and hardship surround them and they eagerly await Allah's aid. Allah said in another Ayah,

[وَزُلْزِلُواْ حَتَّى يَقُولَ الرَّسُولُ وَالَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ مَعَهُ مَتَى نَصْرُ اللَّهِ]
(..and were so shaken that even the Messenger and those who believed along with him said, "When (will come) the help of Allah'') [2:214] As for saying of Allah,

[كَذَّبُواْ]
(they were denied) There are two recitations for it. One of them is with a Shadda (meaning: they were betrayed by their people). And this is the way `A'ishah, may Allah be pleased with her, recited it. Al-Bukhari said that `Urwah bin Az-Zubayr narrated that he asked `Aishah about the meaning of the following verse,

[حَتَّى إِذَا اسْتَيْـَسَ الرُّسُلُ]
(`Until when the Messengers give up hope...), Respite will be granted, is it denied or betrayed `A'0ishah replied, "betrayed.'' `Urwah said, "I said, `They were sure that their people betrayed them, so why use the word `thought'' She said, `Yes, they were sure that they betrayed them.' I said,

[وَظَنُّواْ أَنَّهُمْ قَدْ كُذِبُواْ]
(and they thought that they were denied (by Allah)) `A'0ishah said, `Allah forbid! The Messengers did not suspect their Lord of such a thing.' I asked, `So what does this Ayah mean' She said, `This Verse is concerned with the Messengers' followers who had faith in their Lord and believed in their Messengers. The period of trials for those followers was long and Allah's help was delayed until the Messengers gave up hope for the conversion of the disbelievers amongst their nation and suspected that even their followers were shaken in their belief, Allah's help then came to them.''' Ibn Jurayj narrated that Ibn Abi Mulaikah said that Ibn `Abbas read this Ayah this way,

[وَظَنُّواْ أَنَّهُمْ قَدْ كُذِبُواْ]
(and they thought they were denied.) `Abdullah bin Abi Mulaikah said, "Then Ibn `Abbas said to me that they were humans. He then recited this Ayah,

[حَتَّى يَقُولَ الرَّسُولُ وَالَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ مَعَهُ مَتَى نَصْرُ اللَّهِ أَلاَ إِنَّ نَصْرَ اللَّهِ قَرِيبٌ]
(..even the Messenger and those who believed along with him said, "When (will come) the help of Allah'' Yes! Certainly, the help of Allah is near!)[2:214]'' Ibn Jurayj also narrated that Ibn Abi Mulaykah said that `Urwah narrated to him that `Aishah did not agree to this and rejected it. She said, "Nothing that Allah has promised Muhammad, peace be upon him, but Muhammad knew for certainty that it shall come, until he died. However, the Messengers were tried with trials until they thought that those believers, who were with them, did not fully support them.'' Ibn Abi Mulaykah said that `Urwah narrated that `Aishah recited this Ayah this way, (وَظَنُّوا أَنَّهُمْ قَد كُذِّبُوا) "and they thought that they were betrayed.'' Therefore, there is another way of reciting this word, and there is a difference of opinion about its meaning. We narrated the meaning that Ibn `Abbas gave. Ibn Mas`ud said, as Sufyan Ath-Thawri narrated from him, that he read the Ayah this way,

[حَتَّى إِذَا اسْتَيْـَسَ الرُّسُلُ وَظَنُّواْ أَنَّهُمْ قَدْ كُذِبُواْ]
(until, when the Messengers gave up hope and thought that they were denied.) `Abdullah commented that this is the recitation that you dislike. Ibn `Abbas also commented on the Ayah,

[حَتَّى إِذَا اسْتَيْـَسَ الرُّسُلُ وَظَنُّواْ أَنَّهُمْ قَدْ كُذِبُواْ]
(until, when the Messengers gave up hope and thought that they were denied) "When the Messengers gave up hope that their people would accept their messages, and their people thought that their Messengers had not said the truth to them, Allah's victory came then,

[فَنُجِّىَ مَن نَّشَآءُ]
(and whomsoever We willed were rescued.) Ibn Jarir At-Tabari narrated that Ibrahim bin Abi Hamzah [Hurrah] Al-Jazari said, "A young man from Quraysh asked Sa'id bin Jubayr `O, Abu `Abdullah! How do you read this word, for when I pass by it, I wish I had not read this Surah,

[حَتَّى إِذَا اسْتَيْـَسَ الرُّسُلُ وَظَنُّواْ أَنَّهُمْ قَدْ كُذِبُواْ]
(until, when the Messengers gave up hope and thought that they were denied...) He said, `Yes, it means, when the Messengers gave up hope that their people will believe in them and those to whom the Messengers were sent thought that the Messengers were not truthful.''' Ad-Dahhak bin Muzahim commented, "I have not seen someone who is called to knowledge and is lazy accepting the invitation, until today! If you traveled to Yemen just to get this explanation, it will still be worth it.'' Ibn Jarir At-Tabari narrated that Muslim bin Yasar asked Sa`id bin Jubayr about the same Ayah and he gave the same response. Muslim stood up and embraced Sa'id bin Jubayr, saying, "May Allah relieve a distress from you as you relieved a distress from me!'' This was reported from Sa'id bin Jubayr through various chains of narration. This is also the Tafsir that Mujahid bin Jabr and several other Salaf scholars gave for this Ayah. However, some scholars said that the Ayah,

[وَظَنُّواْ أَنَّهُمْ قَدْ كُذِبُواْ]
(and thought that they were denied), is in reference to the believers who followed the Messengers, while some said it is in reference to the disbelievers among the Messengers' nation. In the latter case, the meaning becomes: `and the disbelievers thought that the Messengers were not given a true promise of victory. ' Ibn Jarir At-Tabari narrated that Tamim bin Hadhlam said, "I heard `Abdullah bin Mas`ud comment on this Ayah,

[حَتَّى إِذَا اسْتَيْـَسَ الرُّسُلُ]
(until, when the Messengers gave up hope) that their people will believe in them, and their people thought when the respite was long, that the Messengers were not given a true promise.''

[لَقَدْ كَانَ فِى قَصَصِهِمْ عِبْرَةٌ لاوْلِى الأَلْبَـبِ مَا كَانَ حَدِيثًا يُفْتَرَى وَلَـكِن تَصْدِيقَ الَّذِى بَيْنَ يَدَيْهِ وَتَفْصِيلَ كُلِّ شَىْءٍ وَهُدًى وَرَحْمَةً لْقَوْمٍ يُؤْمِنُونَ ]
(111. Indeed in their stories, there is a lesson for men of understanding. It (the Qur'an) is not a forged statement but a confirmation of that which was before it and a detailed explanation of everything and a guide and a mercy for the people who believe.)

Allah's Prophets are aided by Victory in Times of Distress and Need

Allah states that He sends His aid and support to His Messengers, peace be upon them, when distress and hardship surround them and they eagerly await Allah's aid. Allah said in another Ayah,

[وَزُلْزِلُواْ حَتَّى يَقُولَ الرَّسُولُ وَالَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ مَعَهُ مَتَى نَصْرُ اللَّهِ]
(..and were so shaken that even the Messenger and those who believed along with him said, "When (will come) the help of Allah'') [2:214] As for saying of Allah,

[كَذَّبُواْ]
(they were denied) There are two recitations for it. One of them is with a Shadda (meaning: they were betrayed by their people). And this is the way `A'ishah, may Allah be pleased with her, recited it. Al-Bukhari said that `Urwah bin Az-Zubayr narrated that he asked `Aishah about the meaning of the following verse,

[حَتَّى إِذَا اسْتَيْـَسَ الرُّسُلُ]
(`Until when the Messengers give up hope...), Respite will be granted, is it denied or betrayed `A'0ishah replied, "betrayed.'' `Urwah said, "I said, `They were sure that their people betrayed them, so why use the word `thought'' She said, `Yes, they were sure that they betrayed them.' I said,

[وَظَنُّواْ أَنَّهُمْ قَدْ كُذِبُواْ]
(and they thought that they were denied (by Allah)) `A'0ishah said, `Allah forbid! The Messengers did not suspect their Lord of such a thing.' I asked, `So what does this Ayah mean' She said, `This Verse is concerned with the Messengers' followers who had faith in their Lord and believed in their Messengers. The period of trials for those followers was long and Allah's help was delayed until the Messengers gave up hope for the conversion of the disbelievers amongst their nation and suspected that even their followers were shaken in their belief, Allah's help then came to them.''' Ibn Jurayj narrated that Ibn Abi Mulaikah said that Ibn `Abbas read this Ayah this way,

[وَظَنُّواْ أَنَّهُمْ قَدْ كُذِبُواْ]
(and they thought they were denied.) `Abdullah bin Abi Mulaikah said, "Then Ibn `Abbas said to me that they were humans. He then recited this Ayah,

[حَتَّى يَقُولَ الرَّسُولُ وَالَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ مَعَهُ مَتَى نَصْرُ اللَّهِ أَلاَ إِنَّ نَصْرَ اللَّهِ قَرِيبٌ]
(..even the Messenger and those who believed along with him said, "When (will come) the help of Allah'' Yes! Certainly, the help of Allah is near!)[2:214]'' Ibn Jurayj also narrated that Ibn Abi Mulaykah said that `Urwah narrated to him that `Aishah did not agree to this and rejected it. She said, "Nothing that Allah has promised Muhammad, peace be upon him, but Muhammad knew for certainty that it shall come, until he died. However, the Messengers were tried with trials until they thought that those believers, who were with them, did not fully support them.'' Ibn Abi Mulaykah said that `Urwah narrated that `Aishah recited this Ayah this way, (وَظَنُّوا أَنَّهُمْ قَد كُذِّبُوا) "and they thought that they were betrayed.'' Therefore, there is another way of reciting this word, and there is a difference of opinion about its meaning. We narrated the meaning that Ibn `Abbas gave. Ibn Mas`ud said, as Sufyan Ath-Thawri narrated from him, that he read the Ayah this way,

[حَتَّى إِذَا اسْتَيْـَسَ الرُّسُلُ وَظَنُّواْ أَنَّهُمْ قَدْ كُذِبُواْ]
(until, when the Messengers gave up hope and thought that they were denied.) `Abdullah commented that this is the recitation that you dislike. Ibn `Abbas also commented on the Ayah,

[حَتَّى إِذَا اسْتَيْـَسَ الرُّسُلُ وَظَنُّواْ أَنَّهُمْ قَدْ كُذِبُواْ]
(until, when the Messengers gave up hope and thought that they were denied) "When the Messengers gave up hope that their people would accept their messages, and their people thought that their Messengers had not said the truth to them, Allah's victory came then,

[فَنُجِّىَ مَن نَّشَآءُ]
(and whomsoever We willed were rescued.) Ibn Jarir At-Tabari narrated that Ibrahim bin Abi Hamzah [Hurrah] Al-Jazari said, "A young man from Quraysh asked Sa'id bin Jubayr `O, Abu `Abdullah! How do you read this word, for when I pass by it, I wish I had not read this Surah,

[حَتَّى إِذَا اسْتَيْـَسَ الرُّسُلُ وَظَنُّواْ أَنَّهُمْ قَدْ كُذِبُواْ]
(until, when the Messengers gave up hope and thought that they were denied...) He said, `Yes, it means, when the Messengers gave up hope that their people will believe in them and those to whom the Messengers were sent thought that the Messengers were not truthful.''' Ad-Dahhak bin Muzahim commented, "I have not seen someone who is called to knowledge and is lazy accepting the invitation, until today! If you traveled to Yemen just to get this explanation, it will still be worth it.'' Ibn Jarir At-Tabari narrated that Muslim bin Yasar asked Sa`id bin Jubayr about the same Ayah and he gave the same response. Muslim stood up and embraced Sa'id bin Jubayr, saying, "May Allah relieve a distress from you as you relieved a distress from me!'' This was reported from Sa'id bin Jubayr through various chains of narration. This is also the Tafsir that Mujahid bin Jabr and several other Salaf scholars gave for this Ayah. However, some scholars said that the Ayah,

[وَظَنُّواْ أَنَّهُمْ قَدْ كُذِبُواْ]
(and thought that they were denied), is in reference to the believers who followed the Messengers, while some said it is in reference to the disbelievers among the Messengers' nation. In the latter case, the meaning becomes: `and the disbelievers thought that the Messengers were not given a true promise of victory. ' Ibn Jarir At-Tabari narrated that Tamim bin Hadhlam said, "I heard `Abdullah bin Mas`ud comment on this Ayah,

[حَتَّى إِذَا اسْتَيْـَسَ الرُّسُلُ]
(until, when the Messengers gave up hope) that their people will believe in them, and their people thought when the respite was long, that the Messengers were not given a true promise.''

[لَقَدْ كَانَ فِى قَصَصِهِمْ عِبْرَةٌ لاوْلِى الأَلْبَـبِ مَا كَانَ حَدِيثًا يُفْتَرَى وَلَـكِن تَصْدِيقَ الَّذِى بَيْنَ يَدَيْهِ وَتَفْصِيلَ كُلِّ شَىْءٍ وَهُدًى وَرَحْمَةً لْقَوْمٍ يُؤْمِنُونَ ]
(111. Indeed in their stories, there is a lesson for men of understanding. It (the Qur'an) is not a forged statement but a confirmation of that which was before it and a detailed explanation of everything and a guide and a mercy for the people who believe.)