Translation Of The Quotation From al-Qurtubî

Muhammad Ghoniem

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The pronoun "man" is grammatically in the jarr case. The meaning is who is more wicked than he who said I can reveal; the person addressed here is cAbdullâh Ibn Sâd Ibn Abî Sarh who used to write the revelation for the Prophet of God(P), later on he apostatized and joined the pagans. The reason given by the commentators is that when the verse 23:12 {We created man of an extraction of clay} was revealed, the Prophet called him and dictated it to him and when the Prophet(P) reached the end of 23:14 {... thereafter We produced him as another creature} cAbdullâh said in amazement {So blessed be God the fairest of creators!}. The Prophet(P) said: (and thus it was revealed to me) which made cAbdullâh doubt and say: "If Muhammad is truthful then I received the revelation and if he lied I say of the like of his speech. So he apostatized and joined the pagans and this is concerning the segment {Or the man who says, "I can reveal the like of what God has revealed"}, narrated by Al-Kolaby from Ibn cAbbâs. It was also narrated by Muhammad Ibn Ishâq who said Sharahbîl said: { Or the man who says, "I can reveal the like of what God has revealed"} was revealed concerning cAbdullâh Ibn Sâd Ibn Abî Sarh who apostatized. When the Prophet(P) entered Mecca he ordered him and cAbdullâh Ibn Khatal and Miqyas Ibn Sabaabah to be executed even if they were under the curtains of the Ka'bah. So, cAbdullâh Ibn Sâd Ibn Abî Sarh fled to cUthmân(RA)), his foster brother - his mother suckled cUthmân. The latter hid him until he brought him to the Prophet(P) after the inhabitants of Mecca became secure and he sought immunity for cAbdullâh. The Prophet(P) remained silent for a long time and then said: (Yes). When cUthmân left, the Prophet(P) said (I said nothing so that one of you executed him). A man among the Ansâr said: "Then why didn't you give me a sign, O Prophet of God?" He answered: (the treachery of the eyes does not befit a Prophet.) Abu Omar said: "And cAbdullâh Ibn Sâd Ibn Abî Sarh converted back to Islam during the conquest of Mecca and his Islam was fine, and later, his behavior was beyond reproach. He was among the wise and the noble from Quraysh, and was the knight of Bani 'Aamir Ibn Lu'ayy was respected among them. Later, cUthmân named him to govern Egypt in the year 25 H. He conquered Africa in the year 27 H and conquered Nuba in the year 31 H and he was the one who signed with the Nubians the armistice that is still valid today. He defeated the Romans in the battle of as-Sawâry in the year 34 H. When he returned from his advent, he was prevented from entering al-Fustât [the capital of Egypt], so he went to 'Asqalân where he lived until the murder of cUthmân. It was also said: He lived in Ramlah until he died away from the turmoil. And he prayed Allah saying: "O Allah! make the prayer of Subh the last of my deeds. So he performed Wudu' and prayed; he read Surat al-Fâtihah and al-'Aadiyaat in the first rak'ah and read al-Fâtihah and another surah in the second rak'ah and made salâm on his right and died before he made salâm on the left side. All this report was conveyed by Yazîd Ibn Abî Habîb and others. He didn't pledge allegiance to cAlî nor to Mu'âwiyah(RA). His death was before the people agreed on Mu'âwiyah. It was also said that he died in Africa, but the correct is that he died in 'Asqalân in the year 36 H or 37 H and it was rather said 36 H. It is also reported from Hafs Ibn Omar from al-Hakam Ibn Abbân from 'Ikrimah that this verse was revealed concerning an-Nadr Ibn Al-Harith for opposing to the Qur'ân by saying:

Wattaahinaati Tahnaa
Wal'aajinaati 'ajnaa
Falkhaabizaati khabzaa
fallaaqimaati laqmaa"

[some rhymes, but silly content!!]

   Islamic Awareness Qur'ân Sources Sarh Translation Of The Quotation From al-Qurtubî


The text in blue is what Qurtubi himself wrote. The text in red consists of the reports he quotes from other commentators. Text between [ ] was added by me mainly for the sake of clarity.

For the convenience of the non-Arabic speaking audience, I translated this report from the Arabic version displayed on the previous page. The translation is far from being perfect. Therefore, if you notice any mistake in the translation or if you have any comment, please send us a message.

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