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Seventy Men from the Children of Israel go for the appointed Meeting Place that Allah designated, Al Print E-mail

`Ali bin Abi Talhah reported that Ibn `Abbas commented; "Allah commanded Musa to choose seventy men. So he chose them and proceeded with them in order that they supplicate to their Lord. Their supplication included asking Allah, `O Allah! Give us what you have never given anyone before us and will never give anyone after us!' Allah disliked this supplication and they were seized with a violent earthquake, Musa said:

﴿رَبِّ لَوْ شِئْتَ أَهْلَكْتَهُم مِّن قَبْلُ وَإِيَّـىَ﴾

("O my Lord, if it had been Your will, You could have destroyed them and me before.)''' As-Suddi said, "Allah commanded Musa to come with thirty men from the Children of Israel, apologizing for worshipping the calf; and He gave them an appointed time and place.

﴿وَاخْتَارَ مُوسَى قَوْمَهُ سَبْعِينَ رَجُلاً﴾

(And Musa chose out of his people seventy (of the best) men.) He chose these men and went along with them so that they could apologize. When they reached the appointed place, they said,

﴿لَن نُّؤْمِنَ لَكَ﴾

(We shall never believe in you), ﴿2:55﴾ `O Musa,

﴿حَتَّى نَرَى اللَّهَ جَهْرَةً﴾

(until we see Allah plainly, ) for you spoke to Him,' they said, `therefore, show Him to us,'

﴿فَأَخَذَتْهُمُ الصَّـعِقَةُ﴾

(but they were struck with a bolt of lightning) ﴿4:153﴾ and they died. Musa stood up crying, invoking Allah, `O Lord! What should I tell the Children of Israel, when I go back to them after You destroyed their best men'

﴿رَبِّ لَوْ شِئْتَ أَهْلَكْتَهُم مِّن قَبْلُ وَإِيَّـىَ﴾

("O my Lord, if it had been Your will, You could have destroyed them and me before'').''' Muhammad bin Ishaq said, "Musa chose seventy of the best men from the Children of Israel. He said to them, `Go to the meeting with Allah and repent for what you committed. Beg His forgiveness for those of your people whom you left behind. Fast, purify yourselves and clean your clothes.' So, he went with them to Mount Tur in Sinai for the meeting place and time designated by his Lord. He went there only with the leave and knowledge of Allah. According to what has been mentioned to me, when the seventy did what he ordered them to do, and went with him to the meeting of Musa with his Lord, they said, `Request that we may also hear the words of our Lord.' So he replied, `I shall.' When Musa approached the mountain it became completely covered with columns of clouds, Musa approached it and entered in them. He said to the people, `Approach.' But when Allah spoke to Musa, his cloak was surrounded by a brilliant light which no human could bear to look at, so below him a barrier was placed and the people approached. When they entered the cloud they fell prostrate and they heard Him while he was speaking to Musa, commanding him and forbidding him, saying what to do and what not to do. When He completed commanding him, and removed the cloud from Musa, he faced the people and they said, `O Musa! We will not believe in you unless we see Allah directly.' So the thunder shook them, their souls were captured and they all died. Musa stood up invoking, begging and supplicating to his Lord,

﴿رَبِّ لَوْ شِئْتَ أَهْلَكْتَهُم مِّن قَبْلُ وَإِيَّـىَ﴾

("O my Lord, if it had been Your will, You could have destroyed them and me before.'')' meaning, `They were foolish. Would You destroy anyone who comes after me from the Children of Israel' Ibn `Abbas, Qatadah, Mujahid and Ibn Jarir At-Tabari said, "They were seized by the tremor or lightning, because they neither shunned nor forbade their people who worshipped the calf.'' This is supported by Musa's statement,

﴿أَتُهْلِكُنَا بِمَا فَعَلَ السُّفَهَآءُ مِنَّآ﴾

("would You destroy us for the deeds of the fools among us'') He said next,

﴿إِنْ هِىَ إِلاَّ فِتْنَتُكَ﴾

("It is only Your Fitnah'') affliction, test and trial, according to Ibn `Abbas, Sa`id bin Jubayr, Abu Al-`Aliyah, Ar-Rabi` bin Anas and several among the Salaf and latter scholars. This is the only plausible meaning, in which Musa says, "The decision is Yours (O Allah), and the judgment, and whatever You will occurs. You misguide whom You will, guide whom You will, and none can guide whom You misguide or misguide whom You guide. There is none who can give what You deprive or avert what You give. The sovereignty is all Yours, and Yours is the judgment, the creation and the decision.'' The Ayah,

﴿أَنتَ وَلِيُّنَا فَاغْفِرْ لَنَا وَارْحَمْنَا وَأَنتَ خَيْرُ الْغَـفِرِينَ﴾

("You are our protector, so forgive us and have mercy on us: for You are the best of those who forgive.''), pertains to (Allah's) covering the mistake and not punishing for the sin. Whenever mercy is mentioned along with forgiveness ﴿such as in Musa's supplication to Allah﴾, it includes the hope that Allah does not permit one to fall into that act again.

﴿وَأَنتَ خَيْرُ الْغَـفِرِينَ﴾

("for You are the best of those who forgive,'') for none except You can forgive the sin.

﴿وَاكْتُبْ لَنَا فِى هَـذِهِ الدُّنْيَا حَسَنَةً وَفِي الاٌّخِرَةِ﴾

("And ordain for us good in this world, and in the Hereafter.'') The first part of Musa's supplication was to fend off what should be avoided, while this part is a request for what is sought. The meaning of,

﴿وَاكْتُبْ لَنَا فِى هَـذِهِ الدُّنْيَا حَسَنَةً وَفِي الاٌّخِرَةِ﴾

("And ordain for us good in this world, and in the Hereafter. '') is, `ordain for us and grant us all that is good in both lives. We mentioned the meaning of `good' before in Surat Al-Baqarah.

﴿إِنَّا هُدْنَـآ إِلَيْكَ﴾

("We have Hudna unto You'') `we repent, go back and return unto You,' according to the meaning of, `Hudna', given by Ibn `Abbas, Sa`id bin Jubayr, Mujahid, Abu Al-`Aliyah, Ad-Dahhak, Ibrahim At-Taymi, As-Suddi, Qatadah and several others.

﴿ . قالَ عَذَابِي أُصِيبُ بِهِ مَنْ أَشَاءُ وَرَحْمَتِي وَسِعَتْ كُلَّ شَيْءٍ فَسَأَكْتُبُهَا لَلَّذِينَ يَتَّقُونَ وَ يُؤْتُونَ الزَّكَاةَ وَالَّذِينَ هُمْ بِآيَاتِنَا يُؤْمِنُونَ ﴾

(He said: (As to) My punishment I afflict therewith whom I will and My mercy embraces all things. That (mercy) I shall ordain for those who have Taqwa, and give Zakah; and those who believe in Our Ayat.) ﴿7:156﴾ j

 

 
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