This page contains all verses of surah Al-Jumu'a in addition to Interpretation of all verses by Maarif-ul-Quran (Mufti Muhammad Shafi). In the first part you can read surah الجمعة ordered in pages exactly as it is present in the Quran. To read an interpretation of a verse click on its number.
يُسَبِّحُ لِلَّـهِ مَا فِي السَّمَاوَاتِ وَمَا فِي الْأَرْضِ (All that is in the heavens and all that is in the earth proclaim the purity of Allah,...62:1] Surahs of the Qur'an that begin with 'sabbaha' or 'yusabbihu' [ proclaiming Allah's purity ] are called Musabbihat, in all of which it is established that everything in the heaven and earth proclaims the purity of Allah.
That all creatures in the heavens and the earth declare the purity of Allah in a symbolic way is understandable. Everyone may understand that every single particle created by Allah bears testimony to the wisdom and power of the Wise Creator in their circumstantial language, which is their tasbih (proclamation). However, the fact is that, everything proclaims tasbih in its real sense in its own way, because Allah has bestowed some sort of sense and perception to every particle of this universe, even to stones and trees, according to their ability. Since the first demand upon sense and perception is to recognize its Creator and Maker, and glorify Him, therefore, it is not far-fetched to conceive that everything in nature really declares the purity of Allah in its own peculiar language, though human ears might not be able to hear it. Thus the Qur'an on one occasion says: وَلَـٰكِن لَّا تَفْقَهُونَ تَسْبِيحَهُمْ (...but you do not understand their extolling ...[ 17:44] At the commencement of most Surahs called Musabbihat the past indefinite tense sabbaha is employed. Only at the beginning of Surahs Al-Jumu'ah and At-Taghabun the present form yusabbihu is used. The different forms at the beginning of different Surah have fresh rhetorical elegance and refinement. The past tense connotes certitude, and therefore mostly this tense has been used. The present form connotes continuity, which is employed in two places for this purpose.
هُوَ الَّذِي بَعَثَ فِي الْأُمِّيِّينَ رَسُولًا مِّنْهُمْ (He is the One who raised amidst the unlettered people a messenger from among themselves...62:2) The word ummiyyin is the plural of ummiyy, which denotes 'unlettered'. The Arabs were known by this title, because they did not know how to read and write. Very few of them had the knowledge of reading and writing. The Arabs in this verse are specially referred to in order to express the great power of Allah. The Holy Prophet ﷺ is also sent amongst them, who is himself unlettered. The duties and reformative functions of a Prophet [ as set out in the forthcoming verse ] are based on knowledge and education. These reforms are such that no unlettered individual can ever teach them, nor is it possible for an unlettered nation to learn. It was only through the Divine Supreme Power and the miracle of the Messenger of Allah ﷺ that when these reforms started, great scholars, intellectuals, men of letters, savants and sages were born among the unlettered people, and their knowledge, wisdom, sagacity and erudition was recognized by the entire world.
The Three Objectives of the Advent of the Prophet ﷺ
يَتْلُو عَلَيْهِمْ آيَاتِهِ وَيُزَكِّيهِمْ وَيُعَلِّمُهُمُ الْكِتَابَ وَالْحِكْمَةَ (...to recite His verses to them, and to make them pure, and to teach them the Book and the Wisdom....62:2) In the context of the Divine blessings bestowed to the mankind, three qualities of the Holy Prophet ﷺ have been mentioned. One, to recite the verses of the Qur'an to his Ummah. Two, to purify them of all the outer and inner defilements. This includes outer purification that relates to one's body and dress, and also the inner purification that relates to one's faith, actions and moral attitude. Three, to teach the Book and the wisdom. These three factors are Divine blessings to the mankind on the one hand, and these are the basic objectives and the terms of reference of the Holy Prophet ﷺ for which he was sent to this world.
يَتْلُو عَلَيْهِمْ آيَاتِهِ (...to recite His verses to them) The word tilawah lexically signifies 'to follow, to obey' but in the terminology of the Qur'an, it signifies 'recitation or reading of the Divine Words'. The word 'at refers to the verses of the Qur'an. The prepositional phrase ` alaihim [ to them ] signifies that one of the objectives or duties of the Prophet ﷺ is to recite the verses of the Qur'an to the people.
In the current verse, the second objective of the Holy Prophet ﷺ is to: يُزَكِّيهِمْ (make them pure) which is derived from tazkiyah and it means 'to make pure'. Often it is used exclusively for inner cleanliness, that is, to be free from such inner adulterating matter as kufr, shirk and free from inner moral defilement. But occasionally, it is used in the general sense of both outer and inner cleanliness. Probably, in this context it is used in the general sense of the term.
يُعَلِّمُهُمُ الْكِتَابَ وَالْحِكْمَةَ (...to teach them the Book and the Wisdom...62:2) The word al-Kitab refers to the Holy Qur'an, and the word al-hikmah refers to all the teachings and guidance that have been received from the Messenger of Allah ﷺ orally or practically. As a result, many of the commentators have interpreted the word hikmah as the Approved Way [ Sunnah of the Holy Prophet ﷺ .
A Question and its Answer
A question arises here that the natural order of wording in the verse should have been thus: [ 1] recitation or teaching of words; followed by [ 2] teaching of meaning; and consequently [ 3] making pure by inculcating righteous deeds and high morals. However, in most places the Qur'an has changed the sequence by inserting '[ 3] tazkiyah or making pure' between '[ 1] tilawah (recitation) and '[ 2] ta` lim (teaching). Ruh-ul-Ma'ani explains that if the natural order of wording were to be maintained in all verses, all three elements would have combined together and become 'one', as it happens in pharmaceutical mixing of many substances, the aggregate of which loses the separate identity of each element, and becomes a single 'compound' whereas probably Allah wanted to maintain separate identities of the Divine blessings and the three Prophetic duties separately identifiable. By changing the natural order in most places, the Holy Qur'an has probably alluded to this fact.
Please see Ma` arif--ul-Qur'an Vol. 1/pp 331-343, under the Surah Al-Baqarah Verse 129, for fuller explanation of this verse.
وَآخَرِينَ مِنْهُمْ لَمَّا يَلْحَقُوا بِهِمْ وَهُوَ الْعَزِيزُ الْحَكِيمُ (...And [ this Messenger is sent also ] to others of them who did not join them so far. And He is the All-mighty, the All-wise...62:3) The word 'akharin means 'other people' and the phrase لَمَّا يَلْحَقُوا بِهِمْ means 'those people who have not yet joined the unlettered people'. This refers to all those Muslims who will enter the fold of Islam until the Last Hour [ as transmitted by Ibn Zaid, Mujahid and others ]. This indicates that the succeeding generations of Muslims will be appended to the earlier generations of believers, that is, the noble Companions. This is great good news for the succeeding generations of Muslims. [ Ruh ].
Grammatically, there are two views regarding the conjoining of the word 'akharin. One view holds that it is conjoined to ummiyyin and it means that 'Allah has sent His Messenger ﷺ among the unlettered people and also among those who have not yet joined them'. Sending the Prophet ﷺ among the present unlettered people is quite obvious, but 'sending him among those who have not yet come' needs explanation. Bayan-ul-Qur'an explains that 'sending among them' stands for 'sending for them' because the preposition fi in Arabic is also used in the sense of 'for'. According to some other grammarians, however, the word 'akharin is conjoined to the objective pronoun him attached to the verb yu'allimu-hum, in which case the interpretation would be 'the Prophet ﷺ teaches the unlettered people and also the people who have not joined them so far'. [ Mazhari prefers the latter interpretation ].
Sayyidna Abu Hurairah رضی اللہ تعالیٰ عنہ narrates, as recorded in Bukhari and Muslim, that they were sitting in the company of the Holy Prophet ﷺ when Surah Al-Jumu'ah was revealed. He recited it to them, and when he reached the verse وَآخَرِينَ مِنْهُمْ لَمَّا يَلْحَقُوا بِهِمْ (...and others of them who have not joined them so far...62:3) they asked him who are these 'others'. He remained silent. They asked him the second time and he remained silent. They asked him the third time, and he put his blessed hand on the back of Sayyidna Salman Al-Farisi ؓ [ who was at that time in the gathering ] and said: "If faith were on Pleiades, even then some men or a man from these people would attain it." [ Mazhari ]. This narration does not specify people of Persia, but it does prove that they are included in the general sense of 'others'. This narration speaks greatly of all non-Arabs who embrace Islam. [ Mazhari ].
مَثَلُ الَّذِينَ حُمِّلُوا التَّوْرَاةَ ثُمَّ لَمْ يَحْمِلُوهَا كَمَثَلِ الْحِمَارِ يَحْمِلُ أَسْفَارًا (The example of those who were ordered to bear (the responsibility of acting upon) the Torah, then they did not bear it, is like a donkey that carries a load of books...5) The word asfar is the plural of sifr, which means a 'large book'. The preceding verses described that the Holy Prophet ﷺ was raised up among the unlettered people having three main objectives of his mission. The previous Divine Book Torah described the Holy Prophet ﷺ almost with the same qualities as are described in the Qur'an, which required that as soon as the Jews saw the Holy Prophet ﷺ ، they should have recognized him and believed in him. But the material position and possessions blinded them to the teachings of Torah. Despite their knowledge of Torah, they acted as practical ignoramus. The verse describes their block-headed behaviour with the example of a donkey loaded with weighty tomes. The donkey carries its loads, but it is neither aware of its subject-matter, nor does it benefit by it. Similarly, the Jews carry around the Torah for material gains and to seek position and status among people, but they do not benefit by its guidance.
The Example of a Non-Practicing Scholar
Commentators have stated that the example given by the verse for Jews applies to any religious scholar who does not act upon his knowledge. A Persian poet has put it thus:
نہ محقق بود نہ دانش مند چار پایے برو کتابے چند
'He is neither a scholar, nor a knowledgeable person.
He is but an animal of four legs, carrying the load of some books'
قُلْ يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ هَادُوا إِن زَعَمْتُمْ أَنَّكُمْ أَوْلِيَاءُ لِلَّـهِ مِن دُونِ النَّاسِ فَتَمَنَّوُا الْمَوْتَ إِن كُنتُمْ صَادِقِينَ
(Say, "0 those who are Jews, if you claim that you are the friends of Allah to the exclusion of all other people, then express your desire for death, if you are true…62:6)
Friends of Allah to the exclusion of all other people, then express your desire for death, if you are true…62:6)
Despite their kufr, shirk and moral aberration, the Jews claimed نَحْنُ أَبْنَاءُ اللَّـهِ وَأَحِبَّاؤُهُ (…We are the sons of Allah and His favourites) [ 5:18] and they also claimed لَن يَدْخُلَ الْجَنَّةَ إِلَّا مَن كَانَ هُودًا (…no one shall ever enter Paradise unless he is a Jew) [ 2:111]. In other words, they believed themselves to be safe and immune from the punishment of the Hereafter, and thought that the blessings of Paradise are their personal property. Obviously, if a person believes that the blessings of the Hereafter are a zillion times better than the blessings of this world, he must, of necessity, wish for death, so that he is able to enter Paradise sooner and start enjoying its blessings forthwith. He sees with his own eyes that this world is not free from miseries, sorrows and hardships and one has to suffer from certain diseases as long as he is living here. Then if he believes that, as soon as he dies, he will certainly receive those numerous and eternal blessings, a wise man should naturally wish for death in his heart, so that he may be set free from this miserable world and reach the next world where he will reside forever in eternal peace and comfort. That is why the Messenger of Allah ﷺ is instructed in the present verse to challenge that if they are Allah’ s children and His beloved ones they do not have any fear of punishment in the Hereafter, then the reason demands that they should wish for death. Then the Holy Qur’ an itself falsified them in the following words:
وَلَا يَتَمَنَّوْنَهُ أَبَدًا بِمَا قَدَّمَتْ أَيْدِيهِمْ (And they will never express this desire, because of what their hands have sent ahead…62:7) . In other words, they will not wish for death because of the kufr and shirk and the evil deeds they have committed. They fully know that there will nothing for them in the Hereafter but the punishment of Hell. Their claim that they are Allah’ s children and His loved ones is absolutely false, a claim that they themselves know is false. They make such claims for worldly and material gains. They also know that if they accept the Holy Prophet’ s ﷺ challenge and invoke death upon themselves, it would be readily accepted and they would die instantly. Being convinced of the falsity of their position, the Jews will refuse to accept the challenge. A Prophetic Tradition reports that the Messenger of Allah ﷺ has stated that if any one of them at that time had wishes for death, he would have died instantly. [ Ruh ]
Is Longing for Death Permissible?
This subject has been fully discussed in Surah Al-Baqarah. Traditions forbid anyone to wish for death. The most important reason behind this is that no one has the right to believe that as soon as he dies, he will certainly enter Paradise and will have no fear of any punishment. Wishing for death in such a state of mind is tantamount to show bravery before Allah.
قُلْ إِنَّ الْمَوْتَ الَّذِي تَفِرُّونَ مِنْهُ فَإِنَّهُ مُلَاقِيكُمْ (Say, “ Indeed, the death from which you [ try to ] run away has to visit you,…62:8). In other words, the Jews’ running away from longing for death despite their aforesaid claim is tantamount to running away from death itself. The Holy Prophet ﷺ is instructed in the verse to tell them that the death from which they are fleeing would inevitably catch up with them. If that would not happen instantly, it would certainly happen sometime later. Thus it is impossible for anyone to avoid or avert death in any way.
Laws pertaining to Avoiding the Causes of Death
There are many normal causes of death, from which both reason and Shari’ ah require man to avoid. Once the Holy Prophet ﷺ passed under a bent wall [ as if it was about to fall down or collapse ] and he passed it quickly, lest it should fall down or collapse on him. Likewise, if fire breaks out at some place, both reason and shari’ ah dictate that one should run away from there. These circumstances of fleeing from death do not fall under fleeing from death denounced in the above verse, if our faith is sound and we believe that when the predetermined time of our death will approach, we will not be able to escape. Since we do not know for sure whether fire, or poison, or some other obnoxious thing will be the destined cause of our death in a particular situation, running away from them would not amount to fleeing from death that is denounced in the verse.
As for as bubonic plague or epidemic is concerned, it is a separate issue. The details appear in books of jurisprudence and Hadith which may be consulted. The author of Ruh-ul-Ma’ ani has on this occasion discussed this issue exhaustively and clarified it to a great degree. Some of its details have already been given in this book under the verses 2:243 to 244. See vol. 1, pp. 619-622.