Surah Baqarah >> Currently viewing Surah Baqarah Ayat 8 (2:8)

Surah Baqarah Third Ayah in Arabic:

وَمِنَ ٱلنَّاسِ مَن يَقُولُ ءَامَنَّا بِٱللَّهِ وَبِٱلْيَوْمِ ٱلْءَاخِرِ وَمَا هُم بِمُؤْمِنِينَ

Transliteration:

Wa minan naasi mainy yaqoolu aamannaa billaahi wa bil yawmil aakhiri wa maa hum bimu’mineen

English Translation:

DR. GHALI And of mankind (there) are some who say, “We have believed in Allah and in the Last Day.” And in no way are they believers.

MUHSIN KHAN And of mankind, there are some (hypocrites) who say: “We believe in Allah and the Last Day” while in fact they believe not.

PICKTHALL And of mankind are some who say: We believe in Allah and the Last Day, when they believe not.

SAHIH INTERNATIONAL And of the people are some who say, “We believe in Allah and the Last Day,” but they are not believers.

YUSUF ALI Of the people there are some who say: “We believe in Allah and the Last Day;” but they do not (really) believe.

MUFTI TAQI USMANI And among men there are some who say, “We believe in Allah and in the Last Day”, yet they are not believers.

ABDUL HALEEM Some people say, ‘We believe in God and the Last Day,’ when really they do not believe.

ABUL ALA MAUDUDI There are some who say: “We believe in Allah and in the Last Day,” while in fact they do not believe.

Surah Baqarah Ayat 8 Tafseer

Here we’ve provided different sources of commentary to help with learning and understanding the eight ayat of Surah Baqarah.

Tafsir by Ibn Kathir [2:8-9]

Meaning of Nifaq

 

Nifaq means to show conformity – or agreement – and to conceal evil. Nifaq has several types: Nifaq in the creed that causes its people to reside in Hell for eternity, and Nifaq in deed, which is one of the major sins, as we will explain soon, Allah willing. Ibn Jurayj said of the hypocrite that, “His actual deeds are different from what he publicizes, what he conceals is different from what he utters, his entrance and presence are not the same as his exit and absence.”

 

The Beginning of Hypocrisy

 

The revelations about the characteristics of the hypocrites were revealed in Al-Madinah, this is because there were no hypocrites in Makkah. Rather the opposite was the situation in Makkah, since some people were forced to pretend that they were disbelievers, while their hearts concealed their faith. Afterwards, the Messenger of Allah migrated to Al-Madinah, where the Ansar from the tribes of Aws and Khazraj resided. They used to worship idols during the pre-Islamic period of ignorance, just as the rest of the Arab idolators. Three Jewish tribes resided in Al-Madinah, Banu Qaynuqa`-allies of Al-Khazraj, Banu An-Nadir and Banu Qurayzah-allies of the Aws. Many members of the Aws and Khazraj tribes embraced Islam. However, only a few Jews embraced Islam, such as `Abdullah bin Salam. During the early stage in Al-Madinah, there weren’t any hypocrites because the Muslims were not strong enough to be feared yet. On the contrary, the Messenger of Allah conducted peace treaties with the Jews and several other Arab tribes around Al-Madinah. Soon after, the battle of Badr occurred and Allah gave victory to Islam and its people. `Abdullah bin Ubayy bin Salul was a leader in Al-Madinah. He was Al-Khazraj’s chief, and during the period of Jahiliyyah he was the master of both tribes – Aws and Khazraj. They were about to appoint him their king when the Message reached Al-Madinah, and many in Al-Madinah embraced Islam. Ibn Salul’s heart was filled with hatred against Islam and its people. When the battle of Badr took place, he said, “Allah’s religion has become apparent.” So he pretended to be Muslim, along with many of those who were just like him, as well as many among the People of the Book. It was then that hypocrisy began in Al-Madinah and among the surrounding nomad tribes. As for the Emigrants, none of them were hypocrites, since they emigrated willingly (seeking the pleasure of Allah). Rather, when a Muslim would emigrate from Makkah, he would be forced to abandon all of his wealth, offspring and land; he would do so seeking Allah’s reward in the Hereafter.

 

The Tafsir of Ayah 2:8

 

Muhammad bin Ishaq narrated that Ibn `Abbas said that,

﴿وَمِنَ النَّاسِ مَن يَقُولُ ءَامَنَّا بِاللَّهِ وَبِالْيَوْمِ الأْخِرِ وَمَا هُم بِمُؤْمِنِينَ ﴾

 

(And of mankind, there are some who say: “We believe in Allah and the Last Day” while in fact they do not believe) “This refers to the hypocrites among the Aws and Khazraj and those who behaved as they did.”

This is how Abu Al-`Aliyah, Al-Hasan, Qatadah and As-Suddi explained this Ayah. Allah revealed the characteristics of the hypocrites, so that the believers would not be deceived by their outer appearance, thus saving the believers from a great evil. Otherwise, the believers might think that the hypocrites were believers, when in reality they are disbelievers. To consider the sinners as righteous people is extremely dangerous, Allah said,

﴿وَمِنَ النَّاسِ مَن يَقُولُ ءَامَنَّا بِاللَّهِ وَبِالْيَوْمِ الأْخِرِ وَمَا هُم بِمُؤْمِنِينَ ﴾

 

(And of mankind, there are some who say: “We believe in Allah and the Last Day” while in fact they do not believe) meaning, they utter these false statements only with their tongues, just as Allah said,

﴿إِذَا جَآءَكَ الْمُنَـفِقُونَ قَالُواْ نَشْهَدُ إِنَّكَ لَرَسُولُ اللَّهِ وَاللَّهُ يَعْلَمُ إِنَّكَ لَرَسُولُهُ﴾

 

(When the hypocrites come to you (O Muhammad ), they say: “We bear witness that you are indeed the Messenger of Allah.” Allah knows that you are indeed His Messenger) (63:1).

This Ayah means that the hypocrites utter these statements only when they meet you, not because they actually believe what they are saying. The hypocrites emphasize their belief in Allah and the Last Day with their words, when that is not the case in reality. Therefore, Allah stated that the hypocrites lie in their testimony of creed, when He said,

﴿وَاللَّهُ يَشْهَدُ إِنَّ الْمُنَـفِقِينَ لَكَـذِبُونَ﴾

 

(And Allah bears witness that the hypocrites are indeed liars.) (63:1), and,

﴿وَمَا هُم بِمُؤْمِنِينَ﴾

 

(while in fact they believe not)

Allah said,

﴿يُخَـدِعُونَ اللَّهَ وَالَّذِينَ ءَامَنُوا﴾

 

(They try to deceive Allah and those who believe). The hypocrites show belief outwardly while concealing disbelief. They think that by doing this, they will mislead Allah, or that the statements they utter will help them with Allah, and this is an indication of their total ignorance. They think that such behavior will deceive Allah, just as it might deceive some of the believers. Similarly, Allah said,

﴿يَوْمَ يَبْعَثُهُمُ اللَّهِ جَمِيعاً فَيَحْلِفُونَ لَهُ كَمَا يَحْلِفُونَ لَكُمْ وَيَحْسَبُونَ أَنَّهُمْ عَلَى شَىْءٍ أَلاَ إِنَّهُمْ هُمُ الْكَـذِبُونَ ﴾

 

(On the Day when Allah will resurrect them all together; then they will swear to Him as they swear to you. And they think that they have something (to stand upon). Verily, they are liars!) (58:18). aHence, Allah refuted their way by saying,

﴿وَمَا يَخْدَعُونَ إلاَّ أَنفُسَهُمْ وَمَا يَشْعُرُونَ﴾

 

(While they only deceive themselves, and perceive (it) not!) Allah stated that the hypocrites only deceive themselves by this behavior, although they are unaware of this fact. Allah also said,

﴿إِنَّ الْمُنَـفِقِينَ يُخَـدِعُونَ اللَّهَ وَهُوَ خَادِعُهُمْ﴾

 

(Verily, the hypocrites try to deceive Allah, but it is He Who deceives them) (4:142).

Also, Ibn Abi Hatim narrated that Ibn Jurayj commented on Allah’s statement,

﴿إِنَّ الْمُنَـفِقِينَ يُخَـدِعُونَ اللَّهَ وَهُوَ خَادِعُهُمْ﴾

 

(Verily, the hypocrites seek to deceive Allah, but it is He Who deceives them), “The hypocrites pronounce, `There is no deity worthy of worship except Allah’ seeking to ensure the sanctity of their blood and money, all the while concealing disbelief.”Sa`id said that Qatadah said,

﴿وَمِنَ النَّاسِ مَن يَقُولُ ءَامَنَّا بِاللَّهِ وَبِالْيَوْمِ الأْخِرِ وَمَا هُم بِمُؤْمِنِينَ – يُخَـدِعُونَ اللَّهَ وَالَّذِينَ ءَامَنُوا وَمَا يَخْدَعُونَ إلاَّ أَنفُسَهُمْ وَمَا يَشْعُرُونَ ﴾

 

(And of mankind, there are some who say: “We believe in Allah and the Last Day” while in fact they believe not. They try to deceive Allah and those who believe, while they only deceive themselves, and perceive (it) not!) “This is the description of a hypocrite. He is devious, he says the truth with his tongue and defies it with his heart and deeds. He wakes up in a condition other than the one he goes to sleep in, and goes to sleep in a different condition than the one he wakes up in. He changes his mind just like a ship that moves about whenever a wind blows.”

The Mark of Hypocrisy

We now move on to the third model. The picture that the verses paint of this type of people is neither as bright and noble as the first nor as dark and base as the second. It is an elusive, evanescent image, constantly changing. These are the hypocrites: “There are some who say: “We believe in God and the Last Day’, yet, in truth, they do not believe. They seek to deceive God and the believers, but they are only deceiving themselves, though they may not realize it. There is sickness in their hearts, and God has aggravated their sickness. Painful suffering awaits them for the lies they keep telling. When it is said to them: “Do not spread corruption in the land’, they say: “We are but doers of good.’ But, they indeed are the ones who do spread corruption, though they do not realize it. When it is said to them, ‘Believe as other people have believed’, they say, Are we to believe as the fools believe?’ It is indeed they who are fools, though they do not know it. When they meet the believers, they say, ‘We believe’, but when they are alone with their devilish allies, they say, ‘We are with you, we are only mocking.’ God will put them to derision and let them continue their transgression, blundering blindly along. These are the ones who barter away guidance for error. Their transaction is profitless and they will receive no guidance.” (Verses 8-16)

This was a description of a number of people in Madinah, but the picture can be identified in every human generation. Such people are to be found among the elite of society who lack the moral courage to either openly accept the truth or clearly reject it. They are ever assuming the moral high ground, placing themselves above all others, deriding their understanding. We should, therefore, take these verses in their absolute sense, as being descriptive of hypocrites in all generations. They indeed address the human soul which is one in all societies.

Typically, the hypocrites claim belief in God and the Last Day when they in fact entertain no such belief. They simply do not possess the resolve to declare their true feelings and convictions.

And among men there are some who say, “We believe in Allah and in the Last Day”, Yet they are no believers.


Lying is contemptible
(4) The verse آمَنَّا بِاللَّـهِ وَبِالْيَوْمِ الْآخِرِ‌:”We believe in Allah and in the Last Day” shows us how disgusting it is to tell a lie – even the hypocrites, with all their hostility to Islam, tried to refrain from it as far as possible. In claiming to be Muslims, they used to mention only their faith in Allah and in the Day of Judgment, but left out the faith in the Holy Prophet ﷺ for fear of telling a lie.

(2:8) There are some who say: “We believe in Allah and in the Last Day,” while in fact they do not believe.


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