Quran 3 : 187 (Lesson – 497)
Promise of the People of the Scripture
Surah ‘Aali- ‘Imraan (The Family of Imran -3),
In the name of God, the Beneficent, the Merciful
187. And (remember) when Allah took a solemn covenant from those who had received the Scripture (He said): Ye are to expound it to mankind and not to hide it; but they flung it behind their backs and bought thereby a little gain. Verily evil is that which they have gained thereby.
187. Wa ‘iz ‘akhazAllaahu Miisaaqallaziina ‘uutul-Kitaaba latubayyi-nunnahuu linnaasi wa laa taktumuunah. Fana-bazuuhu waraaa-‘a zuhuurihim wash-taraw bihii samanan- qaliilaa. Fabi’-sa maa yash-taruun.
Miisaaqa – (a solemn covenant), the origin of this word is wasaqa. Some more words have been derived from it also i.e. wasaaq, wasuuq, wasiiqah etc. With this connection miisaaq means “covenant, promise”. Literal meaning of this word is “to tie, to bind, to make an agreement”. It also means engagement, stipulation, agreement, bond, treaty, vow, contract, time, period, reign and obligation. It is being mentioned here that Allah Almighty took two covenants from the People of the Scripture:
- They will expound entire truths, facts and commandments stated in the Scripture in front of the people.
- They will neither hide anything from the Scripture and nor tell the people something wrong.
It has been described in this verse that a solemn covenant was taken from the scholars of the Scripture that, “Those entire orders and glad tidings which exist in the Scripture of Allah Almighty, were required to be delivered before the people very clearly. In addition, they were forbidden from hiding anything and they would not have to differentiate in the meanings of Its verses. But they did not care, broke their covenant with Allah Almighty for the sake of a little, contemptible and abject gain of the world, changed the words and meanings of the Scripture, and orders of Allah Almighty. They tried their best to hide the glad tidings regarding the last Messenger of Allah Almighty (grace, glory, blessings and peace be upon him). As they used to hoard up their wealth and revenue, like this; they also were misers in spreading the Knowledge. Their aim was only to collect the assets and property of the world. The scholars of the Muslims have been warned too by means of this verse that they should not do such deed for the worldly wealth, pomp and show.
An admonitory lesson exists in this verse also for the Muslim scholars and interpreters that they should not become criminals of hiding the verses and Revelations of Allah Almighty like those who had received the Scripture (the scholars of the Jews and the Christians). Islam is a universal truth and it is not possible to hide this truth. Anyhow, this truth shall become public and overcome upon entire false religions.
Allah Almighty has described the facts and events of previous nations for the purpose that we should get warning from them. That, which happened with others, can be with us too. Divine nature, that is to say; the Law of Truth remained always only one, while Allah Almighty has commanded Himself, “Laa tab-diila li-khal-qillaah”.