Surah Baqarah Ayat 67 in Arabic Text
Here you can read various translations of verse 67
And [recall] when Moses said to his people, “Indeed, Allah commands you to slaughter a cow.” They said, “Do you take us in ridicule?” He said, “I seek refuge in Allah from being among the ignorant.”
“And remember Moses said to his people: “Allah commands that ye sacrifice a heifer.” They said: “Makest thou a laughing-stock of us?” He said: “Allah save me from being an ignorant (fool)!”
Then call to mind the other event: when Moses said to his people, “Allah commands you to sacrifice a cow,” they replied, “Do you mean to have a jest with us?” He answered, “I crave Allah’s protection from behaving like ignorant people.”
And (remember) when Musa (Moses) said to his people: “Verily, Allah commands you that you slaughter a cow.” They said, “Do you make fun of us?” He said, “I take Allah’s Refuge from being among Al-Jahilun (the ignorants or the foolish).”
And when Moses said unto his people: Lo! Allah commandeth you that ye sacrifice a cow, they said: Dost thou make game of us? He answered: Allah forbid that I should be among the foolish!
And as Mûsa (Moses) said to his people, “Surely Allah commands you to slay a cow, ” they said,”Do you take us to yourself in mockery?” He said, “I take refuge in Allah from being one of the ignorant.”
Remember when Moses said to his people, ‘God commands you to sacrifice a cow.’ They said, ‘Are you making fun of us?’ He answered, ‘God forbid that I should be so ignorant.’
Quran 2 Verse 67 Explanation
For those looking for commentary to help with the understanding of Surah Baqarah ayat 67, we’ve provided two Tafseer works below. The first is the tafseer of Abul Ala Maududi, the second is of Ibn Kathir.
(2:67) And then recall when Moses said to his people: “Behold, Allah commands you to slaughter a cow.” They said: “Are you jesting with us?” Moses answered: “I seek refuge in Allah that I should behave in the manner of the ignorant.”
There is no commentary by Abul Maududi available for this verse.
68. They said, “Call upon your Lord for us that He may make plain to us what it is!” He said, “He says, `Verily, it is a cow neither too old nor too young, but (it is) between the two conditions’, so do what you are commanded.” 69. They said, “Call upon your Lord for us to make plain to us its colour.” He said, “He says, `It is a yellow cow, bright in its colour, pleasing the beholders.’ ” 70. They said, “Call upon your Lord for us to make plain to us what it is. Verily, to us all cows are alike. And surely, if Allah wills, we will be guided.” 71. He (Musa) said, “He says, `It is a cow neither trained to till the soil nor water the fields, sound, having no blemish in it.’ ” They said, “Now you have brought the truth.” So they slaughtered it though they were near to not doing it.
Allah mentioned the stubbornness of the Children of Israel and the many unnecessary questions they asked their Messengers. This is why when they were stubborn, Allah made the decisions difficult for them. Had they slaughtered a cow, any cow, it would have been sufficient for them, as Ibn `Abbas and `Ubaydah have said. Instead, they made the matter difficult, and this is why Allah made it even more difficult for them. They said,
(Call upon your Lord for us that He may make plain to us what it is!), meaning, “What is this cow and what is its description” Musa said,
(He says, `Verily, it is a cow neither too old nor too young’), meaning, that it is neither old nor below the age of breeding. This is the opinion of Abu Al-`Aliyah, As-Suddi, Mujahid, `Ikrimah, `Atiyah Al-`Awfi, `Ata’, Al-Khurasani, Wahb bin Munabbih, Ad-Dahhak, Al-Hasan, Qatadah and Ibn `Abbas. Ad-Dahhak reported that Ibn `Abbas said that,
(But (it is) between the two conditions) means, “Neither old nor young. Rather, she was at the age when the cow is strongest and fittest.” In his Tafsir Al-`Awfi reported from Ibn `Abbas that,
(bright in its colour) “A deep yellowish white.”
(pleasing the beholder) meaning, that it pleases those who see it. This is also the opinion of Abu Al-`Aliyah, Qatadah and Ar-Rabi` bin Anas. Furthermore, Wahb bin Munabbih said, “If you look at the cow’s skin, you will think that the sun’s rays radiate through its skin.” The modern version of the Tawrah mentions that the cow in the Ayah was red, but this is an error. Or, it might be that the cow was so yellow that it appeared blackish or reddish in color. Allah’s knows best.
(Verily, to us all cows are alike) this means, that since cows are plentiful, then describe this cow for us further,
(And surely, if Allah wills) and if you further describe it to us,
(we will be guided.)
(He says, `It is a cow neither trained to till the soil nor water the fields’) meaning, it is not used in farming, or for watering purposes. Rather, it is honorable and fair looking. `Abdur-Razzaq said that Ma`mar said that Qatadah said that,
(sound) means, “The cow does not suffer from any defects.” This is also the opinion of Abu Al-`Aliyah and Ar-Rabi`. Mujahid also said that the Ayah means the cow is free from defects. Further, `Ata’ Al-Khurasani said that the Ayah means that its legs and body are free of physical defects.
Also, Ad-Dahhak said that Ibn `Abbas said that the Ayah,
(So they slaughtered it though they were near to not doing it) means, “They did not want to slaughter it.”
This means that even after all the questions and answers about the cow’s description, the Jews were still reluctant to slaughter the cow. This part of the Qur’an criticized the Jews for their behavior, because their only goal was to be stubborn, and this is why they nearly did not slaughter the cow. Also, `Ubaydah, Mujahid, Wahb bin Munabbih, Abu Al-`Aliyah and `Abdur-Rahman bin Zayd bin Aslam said, “The Jews bought the cow with a large amount of money.” There is a difference of opinion over this.
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