A Great Sin, and an Unusual Repetance
 

No doubt, the worship of the calf was not a small sin! A nation who had seen so many signs and miracles through their great prophet, forgot them all; and got impatient for a short delay in the absence of their prophet, putting aside the greatest principle of their religion (THE MONOTHEISM) and worshiped the statue of a calf of melted gold!

If such a prospect of idolatry, and worship of images vanished not from their minds, it could be repeated every now and then, and here and there, particularly after the death of Moses. Therefore the culprits were sentenced to an unusual death: taking swords and killing one another! It is narrated that Moses ordered those who worshipped the calf, to perform ablution, and in a dark night, kill each other by swords!

One may ask: ``Was not such a decree to death, too heavy a punishment for the culprits? to answer this we say: In fact, the first tenet, and the most important principle of all the Divine Religions is MONOTHEISM. To tamper with such important basis, and swerve to idolatry is nothing but atheism or godlessness, and the most heinous sin in the sight of God and HIS apostle. How could such a sin be easily ignored? HAD it been taken easy, it would be repeated down through the history, in future, and thus the decree, though very harsh and rigorous, did guarantee the safe moving on, of MONOTHEISM.''

*****

(The event of slaying each other is also mentioned in THE OLD TESTAMENT through the following verses: [ 80 ]

``And Moses stood at the gate of the camp and shouted: Every one who is on the LORDS' side come over here! So all the LEVITES gathered round him and he said to them: The LORD OF ISRAEL commands everyone of you to put on his sword and go through the camp from this gate to the other, and kill his brother, his friends, and his neighbour. The LEVITES obeyed and killed about three thousand men that day. TRANSLATOR'S NOTE - EXODUS 32: 27-28

(( 55 )) 55- AND WHEN YOU SAID: ``O, MOSES! WE SHALL NEVER BELIEVE IN YOU, UNTIL WE SEE ALLAH OPENLY. (WITH OUR EYES) THEN A THUNDERBOLT CAUGHT YOU, WHILE YOU WERE WATCHING

(( 56 )) 56- THEN WE RAISED YOU UP, AFTER YOUR DEATH SO THAT YOU MIGHT GIVE THANKS.

THE COMMENTARY
A STRANGE REQUEST! (VERSE NO. 55)


This verse shows how obstinate and excuse makers the Israelites were, and how God's chastisement caught them down! ``When you said: O, Moses! we shall never believe in you, until we see Allah openly with our eyes.'' This strange request must have been due to their deep ignorance, as the understandings of the fools exceeds not beyond the realm of their five senses. It might also have been due to their obstinacy or their firm adherence to an unreasonable opinion. Any how; it was an inevitable fate and decree for them in that state of mind peculiar to them; to see instead of God; one of God's

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signs, which they were not able to withstand its force and sight, in order to teach them a lesson that no one can see the face of God and live! and that God is not an entity to be ever seen physically by human's eyes; or to be felt by other senses. Therefore, a dreadful event, a monstrous thunder-bolt struck the Mount Sinai - so hard and with such a huge and blinding brightness, and accompained by a violent earthquake that all of them fell down to death!

QURA"N, narrates the event thus: ``(WHEN YOU SAID SO) a thunder-bolt caught you, while you were watching.'' VERSE NO. 56

Moses was annoyed, and felt a bitter discomfort in his heart, because he had brought seventy elect men of the chiefs and leaders, and influentials of the HEBREWS, who were now dead - all of them! What could he say about that to the critics given to harsh and captious judgements?! And how could he handle such a tremendous event? Resorting to God; Moses prayed for his riddle to be solved. God answered his prayer and raised again the seventy elects to life! ``Then we raised you up after your death, so that you might give thanks.''

(( 57 ))

57- AND WE OUTSPREAD THE CLOUD TO OVERSHADOW YOU, AND SENT DOWN TO YOU MANNA AND QUAILS; (SAYING) EAT OF THE GOOD THINGS WE HAVE PROVIDED FOR YOU. (BUT THEY REBELLED) AND TO US THEY DID NOT HARM, THEY RATHER HARMED THEIR OWN SOULS.

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THE COMMENATRY
VARIOUS BOUNTIES (VERSE NO. 57)


By the verses: S 5: 23-25, we understand that after the PASS OVER, God commanded the Israelties to set out for PALESTINE, and enter the Holy Land which Allah had assigned unto them. They disobeyed the commandment saying: ``O Moses! In this land are a people tyrant, and of exceeding strength. We shall not enter the land until they leave it. They even did not stop by saying so; and gave a reply to Moses which was full of irony, insolence and blasphemy! They added: You think too much of your God! If HE is so, then go with your Lord and fight them. We shall sit here on watch! What else should Moses do, but to pray to his Lord God asking HIS help? He said: O, My Lord! I have power only over myself, and my brother. So separate us from these rebellious people.''

The punishment for the rebellion of these obstinate, stiff-necked people was that they were left to wander distractedly hither and thither through the wilderness for forty years! Some of them repented and returned back to obedience and faith, and God the Oft-Forgiving and Merciful pardoned them again, and bestowed on them of HIS bounties:

``And We outspread the cloud to overshadow you, and sent down to you Manna and Quails. Eat of the good things, that WE have provided for you.

WHAT IS MANNA & QUAIL?

Some commentators understand MANNA to be some sort of a natural honey that the Israelites could find in bulk in that extensive desert. This idea is in agreement with what some of the expounders of the Scripture have written that: ``The Holy Land is surrounded with various kinds of blossoms, flowers and vegetations; so much so that the honey bees always make their hives in the clefts of the stones and on the branches of the trees, here and there, and in the house, so that the poorest of the people too, can have access to honey and hive!''

As to QUAILS, the commentators know it to be a kind of small BIRD (like pigeon) that were found in abundance there about in that desert. Some expounders of the BIBLE, say that: ``A large flight of them are driven by

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winds from Africa towards the NORTH, and in the island of CAPRI, and in one of these flights, more than sixteen thousands of the birds were captured. This sort of a bird which has travelled a very long distance upon the sea, towards the Back Gulf, up to SUEZ CANAL and then to the desert of Sinai must have been very tired and weary so as to be captured easily by hands.''

(In the OLD - TESTAMENT, about MANNA & QUAILS we read: ``The LORD said to Moses: I have heard the complaints of the Israelties. Tell them that at twilight they will have meat to eat, and in the morning they will have all the bread they want - Then they will know that, I, the lord, am their God. In the evening a large flock of QUAILS flew in, enough to cover the camp, and in the morning there was dew all round the camp. When the dew evaporated, there was something thin and flaky on the surface of the desert. It was as delicate as frost. (TRANSLATOR'S NOTE)

EXODUS - 16: 12-15

(( 58 )) 58- AND WHEN WE SAID: ``ENTER THIS TOWN, AND EAT OF THE PLENTY THEREIN AS YOU WISH, AND ENTER THE GATE PROSTRATING, AND SAY HETAT, (WE REPENT) WE WILL FORGIVE YOU YOUR FAULTS, AND GIVE MORE TO THOSE WHO DO GOOD.''

(( 59 )) 59- THEN THE TRANSGRESSORS SUBSTITUTED A WORD OTHER THAN THAT WHICH HAD BEEN SAID TO THEM. SO WE SENT DOWN UPON THE TRANSGRESSORS A TORMENT OUT OF HEAVEN FOR THEIR MISDEEDS.

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THE COMMENTARY THE SEVERE PERTINACITY OF THE ISRAELITES (VERSE. 58)

Here we encounter with another incident of the Israelite's life which is connected with their arrival in the Holy Land. The verse brings to our mind: ``When it was said to them, enter this town (THIS PROBABLY REFERS TO SHITTIM) and eat of the plenty therein as you wish, and enter the gate of the town with humility and say; Lord! Forgive us our sins, and We shall forgive you, and even increase the portion of those who do good.'' VERSE NO. 59

But as we know it, due to their obstinacy and pertinacity, a group of them even refused to utter that phrase of EXCUSE ME, and they ridiculed it, and changed it for another impolite pass-word! So a terrible punishment ensued, and a torment was sent down from heaven upon the transgressors that smashed and destroyed them utterly.

(( 60 ))

60- AND WHEN MOSES DEMANDED WATER FOR HIS PEOPLE, THEN WE SAID: STRIKE THE ROCK WITH YOUR STAFF; AND THERE GUSHED FORTH FROM IT TWELVE SPRINGS, AND ALL THE PEOPLE KNEW THEIR DRINKING PLACES. EAT AND DRINK OF GOD'S PROVIDING, AND DO NOT CORRUPT THE LAND WITH EVIL.

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THE COMMENTARY
SPRINGS GUSHING OUT OF THE ROCK (VERSE NO..60)


Again God reminds the Israeltites of another important favour of HIS; saying: ``And when Moses demanded water for his people, and we said strike the rock with your staff, and there gushed out twelve springs, (equal to the number of the Israelite tribes) so that all of them knew their drinking places.'' Commentators say that the stone from which water gushed out, was a big rock. (of red granite near HOREB close to Mount Sinai) God sent down to these ungrateful people, the MANNA & QUAILS from one side, and delicious refined mineral water from other side, haply they become thank-full and take the straight path towards HIM, and then said to them: ``Eat and Drink of God's sustenance, and do not corrupt the land with evil.''

*****

(The narration about the said springs of water, in the BIBLE is as follows: ``The Israelites moved on at the command of the Lord, and made their camp at REPHIDIM, but there was no water there to drink. Moses prayed earnestly to the LORD saying: `What can I do with these people, they are almost ready to stone me!' The LORD said to Moses: `Take your stick and strike that rock. Water will gush out of it for them to drink.'

Moses and AARON, assembled the whole community in front of the rock. Then Moses raised his stick and struck the rock twice with it, and great stream of water gushed out and all the people and animals drank therefrom. TRANSLATOR'S NOTE 0 EXODUS17: 10 NUMBERS20: 10

(( 61 ))

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61- AND WHEN YOU SAID: ``O, MOSES! WE CAN NOT ENDURE ONE KIND OF FOOD. THEREFORE ASK YOUR LORD TO BRING FORTH FOR US, OF WHAT THE EARTH GROWS, OF ITS GREEN HERBS, CUCUMBERS, CORN, LENTILES, AND ONIONS. HE SAID: ``WOULD YOU EXCHANGE THAT WHICH IS GOOD FOR WHAT IS MEANER? GET YOU DOWN TO EGYPT. THERE YOU SHALL FIND ALL THAT YOU HAVE ASKED FOR. AND ABASEMENT AND POVERTY STROKE THEM, AND THEY INCURRED THE WRATH OF ALLAH, BECAUSE THEY WENT ON REJECTING THE SIGNS OF ALLAH, AND SLEW THE PROPHETS WITHOUT ANY RIGHT, AND THAT WAS JUST BECAUSE THEY DISOBEYED AND EXCEEDED THE LIMITS.

THE COMMENTARY
DEMAND FOR VARIOUS FOODS (VERSE NO. 61)


Through this verse; (NO. 61) God revealed their ingratitude and ungratefulness to the numerous and extensive bounties, and especial favours, bestowed on them.

The rebellious children of Israel grumbled and complained against the sameness of their food saying: ``O, Moses! We can not endure with one kind of food; therefore ask your Lord to bring forth for us of what the earth grows of its green herb, cucumber, corn, lentiles and onions!'' Through a recalling of the past experiences, and a severe reproach, Moses tells them: ``Would you exchange that which is good for what is meaner? Go back to Egypt and or get you down to any land like Egypt, and you may have such variety of foods, but would you sell your freedom which is higher, for some cucumber and onions!?''

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Then the HOLY QURA"N adds: ``Abasement and poverty stroke them, and they incurred the wrath of Allah for going on rejecting HIS signs, and slaying the prophets without any right; and that was due to their disobedience and exceeding the limits.''

IS THE DEMAND FOR VARIETY NOT NATURAL?

No doubt, that variety is a means of life; and one of the natural demands of mankind. A man is naturally fatigued for serving the same food for long period. If so, then one may ask: ``Why were then the Israelites reproached for that?'' To answer this we say: ``In fact the reproach was not for their demand for variety. It rather was for preferring a worse, over the best! In our life there are some facts and figures, which are the foundations and basis of it, and one should not, and can not, sacrifice them for food and sleep and enjoyments without falling down! This natural demand of variety has been used sa an effective snare by the colonizers in order to hunt a noble minded freeman, enslaving him by demands for variety in food, clothes, vehicles, houses and etc.''

Here, the reproach of Moses, to the HEBREWS, who were hankering after the delicacies of the Egypt which they had left behind, was a two fold reproach: 1) That, such variety of food, which you are driving at, can be obtained in any land other than Egypt, would you then sell your present freedom for some cucumber and lentiles?

2) And besides: Is not freedom from the bondages of Egypt, far better than delicate food? If not; get you down to Egypt.

(( 62 ))
62- VERILY THOSE WHO BELIEVED, (MUSLIM BELIEVERS) AND THOSE WHO ARE JEW, AND THE CHRISTIANS, AND THE SABAEANS- WHOEVER BELIEVES IN ALLAH AND THE LAST DAY, AND DOES GOOD DEEDS, SHALL HAVE THEIR REWARDS FROM THEIR LORD. THEY WILL HAVE NOTHING TO FEAR, OR TO BE GRIEVED FOR.

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THE COMMENTARY
THE GENERAL LAW FOR SALVATION (VERSE NO. 62)


Here a general law or principle for salvation is put forth by QURA"N, that what is valued in the justice and judgement of God, is the fact and realty, and not mere pretence and ostentation. Before the Throne of God, pure faith and good deed is of the greatest advantage and therefore the verse: ``Muslim believers, Jews, Christians and the Sabaeans whoever of them believes in Allah and the Last Day, and does good deeds, shall have their rewards from their Lord.

AN IMPORTANT QUESTION

Some of the excuse-makers use the above verse as a means and reason for their opinions in general peace among different religions and sects; saying that the followers of all the religions will have final salvation if they obey their own commandments. By that they conclude that, it is not necessary for either a jew or Christian or even a SABAEAN to convert and be Muslim in order to enter the PARADISE. Enough for them is to believe in God and do good.

THE ANSWER

We know well that some verses of the Holy QURA"N interpret and explain other verses. In this relation we read elsewhere in the Holy BOOK: ``And whoever chooses for himself a religion other than Islam, then it will never be accepted from him, and in the Hereafter he shall be among the losers.'' QURA"N - S 3: 85

Besides that, QURA"N is saturated with so many verses, calling the followers of other religions, such as the Jews, and Christians, and else to convert, and to join Islam and the Muslims. Therefore, we, here come to two conclusions:

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1) If the followers of the religions, do sincerely obey their scriptures and commandments, they shall be leaded to Islam, which is a religion of perfect submission to the will of Allah.

2) Or the verse might be an answer to the question that was frequently on the carpet during the life time of the prophet - The new converts, whether a Jew or a Christian, asked; if Islam is the only way to salvation, what about our fathers and forefathers who died a Jew or Christian? Here the revelation says any one who did follow his religion in time, has nothing to fear, nor anything to grieve for. Therefore, the Jews who died a good Jew before the coming of Jesus are saved; and so were the Christian believers who lived before the prophet Mohammad (AS).

(( 63 ))

63- AND WHEN WE TOOK A COVENANT FROM YOU AND RAISED ABOVE YOU THE MOUNT SINAI, (SAYING): TAKE WHAT WE HAVE GIVEN YOU FIRMLY, AND REMIND WHAT IS IN IT, PERHAPS YOU MIGHT AVOID EVIL.

(( 64 )) 64- THEN AFTER THAT YOU TURNED AWAY. HAD IT NOT BEEN FOR THE GRACE AND MERCY OF ALLAH, YOU WOULD CERTAINLY HAVE BEEN AMONG THE LOSERS. [ 90 ]

THE COMMENTARY HOLD ALLAH'S SIGNS FIRMLY (VERSE NO. 63)

The covenant was taken from the Israelites under many forewarnings and portends, telling them to act according to the Scripture's contents which is the LAW and the commandments - ``We took a covenant with you''! and you said: ``All that the LORD hath spoken we will do!''

*****

(MOUNT SINAI, is a sacred mountain in BIBLICAL HISTORY. As early as the 4th century A.D. when Christian pilgrimages to HOLY SITES became common, the location of this mountain was believed to be within the mountains at the apex of the Sinai Peninsula. Among rival claims; JEBAL-MUSA, with its North western peak; RAS - AL - SAFSAFEH, apears the most likely. Some modern scholars seeing allusions to volcanoes in the narrative of EXODUS 19, have sought SINAI in the volcanic area of Midian in ARABIA. Others have argued for a position nearer KADESH in Southern Palestine. Neither of these areas, however can be as easily fitted to the HEBREW TRADITIONS of the wilderness wandering, as the traditional site with its ancient associations. (TRANSLATOR'S NOTE)

ENCYCLOPEDIA INTERNATIONAL
HOW WAS THE MOUNT SINAI RAISED ABOVE THE ISRAELITES?


The great muslim commentator of QURA"N; TABARSI has narrated from IBNZAID that:

``When Moses returned from the mount with TOWRAT, (THE PENTATEUCH) he announced that he had brought the scriptures that consist of the law and Allah's commandments, and that they must act and obey accordingly.''

The Israelites began to make excuses, and create objections that the law and the commandments are hard to fulfil and difficult to perform, and they would not undergo it! To that effect Allah ordered HIS angels to raise up a big part of the Mountain over their heads, threatening them to do what had been incumbent upon them, or else the mountain would fall down killing them all!

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They submitted and fell upon the earth prostrating, and this repentance of them saved them from the wrath of Allah. IS THERE ANY USE IN A COVENANT TAKEN BY FORCE - MAJEURE?

In answer to the above question we may say: ``There is no objection in putting aright, a rebellious obstinate man by force. Such a temporary force majeure may break through their vanity and pride, rendering them humble and obedient, observing the valid rules and regulations, and then get accustomed in doing their duties. In fact such a force majeure is a correction power applied, to put aright those who are astray.'' The said covenant, even if it was taken by force, it was mostly for its practical aspects, or else, a BELIEF or an idea can not easily be changed by compulsion and force!

(( 65 )) 65- AND CERTAINLY YOU KNOW THOSE AMONG YOU WHO TRANSGRESSED THE SABBATH, SO WE SAID TO THEM: ``BE YOU APES, DESPISED AND REJECTED.''

(( 66 )) 66- THEN WE MADE THEIR FATE (BEING APES) AN EXAMPLE TO THEIR OWN GENERATION, AND TO THOSE WHO FOLLOWED THEM, AND A PREACHING TO THOSE WHO AVOID EVIL.

THE COMMENTARY
THE BREACH OF THE SABBATH (VERSE NO. 65)


This verse alludes to the rebellious spirit and disobedience of the Jews, and also their fervent love for this material world. Firstly it mentions that: ``Certainly you know those among you who transgressed in the

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matter of the Sobbath.'' And for their contumacious defiance of the LAW; God said to them: ``BE YOU APES.'' VERSE NO. 66

``Then We made their fate (OF BEING APES) an example for their own generation and their posterity. This event is commentated in detail in S 7: 163-166. Here we give a brief account of it that: ``The punishment for breach of the SABBATH under the MOSAIC LAW was death.

exodus 31: 14 There was a fishing community in a seaside town. It happened so that in the very SABBATH DAY, more and more fishes appeared on the top of the sea water! This allured the fishermen, so that by a mischievous trick, they made fish pounders for entrapping in SABBATH, and catching them in the other days- A mere pretence to deceive the LAW.

For such a breaking of the Sabbath they were turned to apes by Allah's Command! because they played fast and loose with their rites and LAW.

(( 67 ))
67- AND WHEN MOSES SAID TO HIS PEOPLE: ``ALLAH COMMANDS YOU TO SLAUGHTER A COW.'' THEY SAID: ``DO YOU TAKE US IN MOCKERY?'' HE SAID: ``I SEEK REFUGE IN ALLAH, LEST I SHOULD BE ONE OF THE IGNORANTS.''

(( 68 ))

68- THEY SAID: ``CALL ON YOUR LORD, TO MAKE IT KNOWN TO US WHAT KIND OF A COW SHE SHOULD BE?'' HE SAID: HE

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SAYS: ``SHE IS A COW NEITHER OLD, NOR VIRGIN, MIDDLING BETWEEN THE TWO. DO THEREFORE AS YOU ARE BIDDEN.'' (( 69 ))

69- THEY SAID: ``CALL YOUR LORD TO MAKE IT PLAIN TO US, WHAT HER COLOUR SHALL BE?'' HE SAID: HE SAYS: ``IT IS A COW RICH YELLOW PLEASING (TO THE EYES OF) THE BEHOLDERS.''

(( 70 )) 70- THEY SAID: ``CALL ON YOUR LORD TO MAKE KNOWN TO US WHAT SHE MAY BE, FOR TO US COWS LOOK ALIKE, AND IF ALLAH WILLS WE SHALL BE GUIDED ARIGHT.''

(( 71 )) 71- HE SAID: HE SAYS: ``IT IS A COW NOT TAMED TO PLOUGH THE LAND, OR WATER THE FIELD, SOUND AND FREE FROM ANY BLEMISH.''

THEY SAID: ``NOW YOU HAVE BROUGHT THE TRUTH.'' AND THEY SLAUGHTERED HER, THOUGH THEY HAD NOT THE MIND OF DOING IT. (( 72 ))

72- AND WHEN YOU MURDERED A MAN, AND FELL TO A DISPUTE AMONG YOURSELVES AS TO THE CRIME; AND ALLAH

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WAS TO DISCLOSE WHAT YOU WERE HIDING. (( 73 ))

73- SO WE SAID: STRIKE HIM (THE DEAD BODY) WITH A PIECE OF IT, (A PIECE OF THE SLAUGHTERED COW) AND THUS ALLAH BRINGS TO LIFE THE DEAD AND HE SHOWS YOU HIS SIGNS, PERHAPS YOU MIGHT USE YOUR WISDOM.

(( 74 ))

74- THEN YOUR HEARTS HARDENED AFTER THAT, AND ARE LIKE STONES, OR EVEN HARDER! FOR, THERE ARE STONES FROM WHICH STREAMS GUSH OUT, AND OTHERS WHEN SPLIT, WATER ISSUES OUT OF IT, AND OTHERS FALL DOWN FOR FEAR OF ALLAH; AND ALLAH IS NOT HEEDLESS OF WHAT YOU DO.

THE COMMENTARY
THE INCIDENT OF THE ISRAELITE'S COW


Contrary to what we have read so far in brief, now a detail is given here about an israelite event of a murder and a cow. The expounders of the scripture say that a man from among the israelites was mysteriously murdered, so that no one did know who the murderer was. This incident raised a hot dispute among the HEBREW tribes, and they took the case to Moses for judgement. Moses did solve the

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complicated problem, but by a miracle with the permission of God. This event is detailed through the following verses: At first Moses said to his people: ``Allah wants you to slaughter a cow.'' the Jews were surprised to hear that and treated it as a jest, and said to Moses:

``Do you take us in mockery and want to make a fool of us?1'' Moses said to them that mockery and pulling one's leg is the work of the ignorants and fools, and I seek refuge in Allah, lest I should be one of them.''
VERSE NO. 68


Moses answered: ``My Lord says that she is a cow neither old, nor virgin, middling between the too. Do not delay it and do as you are bidden.'' VERSE NO. 69

Putting Moses in one pretext and another the talkative HEBREW asked another question that; what colour the cow should have? Moses with his particular patience said: ``My Lord says that: It is a cow rich yellow, so much so that pleases the eyes of the beholders.'' VERSE NO. 70

Strange enough they did not stop to that much information, and asked again: ``Will you call your Lord to make known to us what she may be?! For to us, all the cows are alike! By this question they made the cirlce of existence of the cow smaller and smaller.''

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VERSE NO. 71 In answer to the above question Moses said: ``Allah says that the cow is not tamed to plough the land or to water the farm - she is sound and without any blemish.''

Finding no more question and pretext they said: ``Now you have brought the truth.'' They then found the cow in any price, and slaughtered her, but the will, was wanting, and they had not the mind of doing it!

VERSE NO. 72 After giving an elaboration of the event QURA"N gives another brief account of it through this verse, (NO. 72) and the next one, saying: ``When you murdered a man and fell to a dispute among yourselves as to the crime, and Allah was to disclose what you were hiding.'' Men may try to hide their crimes individually or collectively, but God will bring them to light in unexpected ways.

VERSE NO. 73 One of the unexpected ways of revealing the hidden crimes, was so that God said: ``Strike the dead body with a piece of the slaughtered cow, and by that Allah brought to life the dead!

VERSE NO. 74 This verse alludes to the sinner's heart that might become as hard as a stone or even harder than that! Through this verse, QURA"N places a poetical allegory before us, that there are stones from which streams gush out, but the hardened heart of sinner, like that of the rebellious and obstinate Jews, will not melt to tears, and open to repentance. There are also some other stones which when split; water may issue out, and yet the hard hearted sinner is worse than all these, because nothing can soften them or change the state of their hardness, to shed some tears of repentance! (Wise men often change their

[ 97 ] mindes, but unwise never do that!. T. N.

LESSONS OF THIS PARABLE

This strange parable besides showing the INFINITE POWER OF THE ALL-MIGHTY LORD, it also alludes to the RESURRECTION-DAY and the raise of the dead, through the power of God. It also may teach us the lesson that: ``We should take it easy, so that God, too may take it easy for us.'' And finally, the selection of a cow for slaughter, may mean that it is intended to clear away the remnants, and traces of the worship of the calf which was mentioned before.

(( 75 ))

75- DO YOU THEN HOPE THAT THEY WILL BELIEVE IN YOU SEEING THAT A PARTY OF THEM HEAR THE WORD OF ALLAH AND THEN PERVERT IT KNOWINGLY, AFTER THEY HAVE IT UNDERSTOOD.

(( 76 ))

76- AND WHEN THEY MEET THOSE WHO BELIEVE THEY SAY: ``WE TOO, ARE BELIEVERS, BUT WHEN THEY MEET EACH OTHER IN PRIVATE, THEY SAY: DO YOU SPEAK TO THEM OF WHAT GOD HAS REVEALED TO YOU THAT THEY MAY USE IT AGAINST YOU IN ARGUMENT BEFORE YOUR LORD. DO YOU THEN NOT USE YOUR WISDOM.

(( 77 ))

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77- KNOW THEY NOT THAT ALLAH KNOWS WHAT THEY CONCEAL, AND WHAT THEY REVEAL?

THE COMMENTARY
A USELESS HOPE (VERSE NO. 75)


The Israelites are abandoned temporarily and Muslims are addressed through this verse (NO. 75) that if you believers ever expect that the Jews in your town, as a body may welcome Mohammad as the prophet prophesied in their own scriptures, you are mistaken. This is because a group of them have heard the word of Allah and then pervert it knowingly after they have it understood.

*****

(THE PROMISE TO SEND A PROPHET LIKE MOSES.- In the old as well as the NEW TESTAMENTS, there are many verses for telling that Mohammad the chosen prophet of God would come. The people of the BOOK have read and understood that glad tidings, but had it perverted or misinterpreted - An instance of this follows: Then Moses said: ``In the land you are about to occupy, people follow the advice of those who practice divination and look for omens, but the LORD your God does not allow you to do this. Instead HE WILL SEND YOU A PROPHET LIKE ME FROM AMONG YOUR PEOPLE, AND YOU ARE TO OBEY HIM.'' TRANSLATOR'S NOTE DEUTERONOMY - 18: 14

OCCASION OF REVELATION (VERSE NO. 76)

As to the cause of the revelation HAZRAT IMAM BAGHER (AS) said: ``A group of the Jews who were not enemies to truth, when meeting Muslims, they mentioned the prophecies and predictions that was in their scriptures about a prophet like Moses, who was promised to come. The elders of the Jews, and the rabbins, knew that and prohibited them from passing the informations, or what they called the secret knowledge of their book; to Muslims. They said: Do not speak to Muslims of what our Lord God has revealed to you so that they may not use it against you in argument before your Lord''

THE COMMENTS

The verse (NO. 76) uncovers another fact that the clean-hearted

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Jews in meeting with Muslims disclosed the prophecies of the BIBLE about Mohammad, but when they met each others in private, those hypocrite Jews who played a double role tried to keep back any knowledge of their own scriptures, lest they should be trapped by their arguments before God in the Dooms Day! This, evidently shows how weak these Jews were in their faith, for taking God a man as ordinary as themselves, thinking that if they did conceal something from the Muslims, It would also be hidden from God! This is why in the following verse (NO. 77) God says:

``Know they not that Allah knows what they conceal and what they reveal.''

(( 78 )) 78- AND SOME OF THEM ARE ILLITERATE MEN WHO KNOW NOT THE BOOK, SAVE DESIRES, AND THEY ARE NONE BUT THOSE WHO MERELY CONJECTURE.

(( 79 )) 79- SO WOE TO THOSE WHO WRITE A BOOK WITH THEIR HANDS, THEN THEY SAY: `THIS IS FROM ALLAH, THAT THEY MAY SELL IT FOR A LITTLE PRICE. SO WOE TO THEM FOR WHAT THEIR HANDS HAVE WRITTEN, AND WOE TO THEM FOR WHAT THEY EARN.

THE COMMENTARY
OCCASION OF REVELATION (VERSE NO. 78 & 79)


Some of the learned Jews of Madina, who called themselves rabbies and doctors of the LAW, wanted to keep back the knowledge of

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the scripture about the promised prophet Mohammad. They thought, confirming the prophet by his signs and symptoms that are prophesied in the BIBLE might endanger their power and advantages in that Jewish circle, So they palmed out their own writing for the Message of God, Which could bring them a miserable profit for the time being, and at the high price of losing their own souls!

Many of the Jews, even if they could read or write, were no better than illiterates; and having heard the symptoms of the prophet from their fathers or grandfathers, they asked their rabbies about it, and they slyly rehearsed to them what they had written with their own hands as the writings of the scriptures and the Message of God.