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Fir`awn threatens the Magicians after They believed in Musa and Their Response to Him Print E-mail

Allah mentions the threats that the Fir`awn - may Allah curse him - made to the magicians after they believed Musa, peace be upon him, and the deceit and cunning that Fir`awn showed the people. Fir`awn said,

﴿إِنَّ هَـذَا لَمَكْرٌ مَّكَرْتُمُوهُ فِى الْمَدِينَةِ لِتُخْرِجُواْ مِنْهَآ أَهْلَهَا﴾

(Surely, this is a plot which you have plotted in the city to drive out its people,) meaning Fir`awn proclaimed, `Musa's defeating you today was because you plotted with him and agreed to that.' Fir`awn also said,

﴿إِنَّهُ لَكَبِيرُكُمُ الَّذِى عَلَّمَكُمُ السِّحْرَ﴾

(He (Musa) is your chief who has taught you magic.) ﴿20:71﴾ However, Fir`awn and all those who had any sense of reason knew for sure that what Fir`awn said was utterly false. As soon as Musa came from Madyan, he called Fir`awn to Allah and demonstrated tremendous miracles and clear proofs for the Truth that he brought. Fir`awn then sent emissaries to various cities of his kingdom and collected magicians who were scattered throughout Egypt. Fir`awn and his people chose from them, summoned them, and Fir`awn promised them great rewards. These magicians were very eager to prevail over Musa in front of Fir`awn, so that they might become closer to him. Musa neither knew any of them nor saw or met them before. Fir`awn knew that, but he claimed otherwise to deceive the ignorant masses of his kingdom, just as Allah described them,

﴿فَاسْتَخَفَّ قَوْمَهُ فَأَطَاعُوهُ﴾

(Thus he ﴿Fir`awn﴾ fooled his people, and they obeyed him.) ﴿43:54﴾ Certainly, a people who believed Fir`awn in his statement,

﴿أَنَاْ رَبُّكُمُ الاٌّعْلَى﴾

("I am your lord, most high.'') ﴿79:24﴾, are among the most ignorant and misguided creatures of Allah. In his Tafsir, As-Suddi reported that Ibn Mas`ud, Ibn `Abbas, and several other Companions, commented,

﴿إِنَّ هَـذَا لَمَكْرٌ مَّكَرْتُمُوهُ فِى الْمَدِينَةِ﴾

("Surely, this is a plot which you have plotted in the city...'') "Musa met the leader of the magicians and said to him, `If I defeat you, will you believe in me and bear witness that what I brought is the truth' The magician said, `Tomorrow, I will produce a type of magic that cannot be defeated by another magic. By Allah! If you defeat me, I will believe in you and testify to your truth.' Fir`awn was watching them, and this is why he said what he said.'' His statement,

﴿لِتُخْرِجُواْ مِنْهَآ أَهْلَهَا﴾

("to drive out its people''), means, so that you all cooperate to gain influence and power, replacing the chiefs and masters of this land. In this case, power in the state will be yours,

﴿فَسَوْفَ تَعْلَمُونَ﴾

("but you shall come to know''), what I will do to you. He then explained his threat,

﴿لأُقَطِّعَنَّ أَيْدِيَكُمْ وَأَرْجُلَكُمْ مِّنْ خِلاَفٍ﴾

("Surely, I will cut off your hands and your feet from opposite sides.'') by cutting the right hand and the left leg or the opposite,

﴿ثُمَّ لأصَلِّبَنَّكُمْ أَجْمَعِينَ﴾

("then I will crucify you all.'') just as he said in another Ayah,

﴿فِى جُذُوعِ النَّخْلِ﴾

("Fi the trunks of date palms'') ﴿20:71﴾, Fi in this Ayah means "on''. Ibn `Abbas said that Fir`awn was the first to crucify and cut off hands and legs on opposite sides. The magicians said,

﴿إِنَّآ إِلَى رَبِّنَا مُنقَلِبُونَ﴾

("Verily, we are returning to our Lord.'') They said, `We are now sure that we will go back to Allah. Certainly, Allah's punishment is more severe than your punishment and His torment for what you are calling us to, this day, and the magic you forced us to practice, is greater than your torment. Therefore, we will observe patience in the face of your punishment today, so that we are saved from Allah's torment.' They continued,

﴿رَبَّنَآ أَفْرِغْ عَلَيْنَا صَبْرًا﴾

("Our Lord! pour out on us patience''), with your religion and being firm in it,

﴿وَتَوَفَّنَا مُسْلِمِينَ﴾

("and cause us to die as Muslims.''), as followers of Your Prophet Musa, peace be upon him. They also said to Fir`awn,

﴿قَالُواْ لَن نُّؤْثِرَكَ عَلَى مَا جَآءَنَا مِنَ الْبَيِّنَـتِ وَالَّذِى فَطَرَنَا فَاقْضِ مَآ أَنتَ قَاضٍ إِنَّمَا تَقْضِى هَـذِهِ الْحَيَوةَ الدُّنْيَآ - إِنَّآ آمَنَّا بِرَبِّنَا لِيَغْفِرَ لَنَا خَطَـيَـنَا وَمَآ أَكْرَهْتَنَا عَلَيْهِ مِنَ السِّحْرِ وَاللَّهُ خَيْرٌ وَأَبْقَى - إِنَّهُ مَن يَأْتِ رَبَّهُ مُجْرِماً فَإِنَّ لَهُ جَهَنَّمَ لاَ يَمُوتُ فِيهَا وَلاَ يَحْيَى - وَمَن يَأْتِهِ مُؤْمِناً قَدْ عَمِلَ الصَّـلِحَـتِ فَأُوْلَـئِكَ لَهُمُ الدَّرَجَـتُ الْعُلَى ﴾

("So decide whatever you desire to decree, for you can only decide for the life of this world. Verily, we have believed in our Lord, that He may forgive us our faults, and the magic to which you did compel us. And Allah is better ﴿to reward﴾ and more lasting ﴿in punishment﴾. Verily, whoever comes to his Lord as a criminal, then surely, for him is Hell, wherein he will neither die nor live. But whoever comes to Him (Allah) as a believer, and has done righteous good deeds, for such are the high ranks (in the Hereafter).) ﴿20:72-75﴾. The magicians started the day as sorcerers and ended as honorable martyrs! Ibn `Abbas, `Ubayd bin `Umayr, Qatadah and Ibn Jurayj commented, "They started the day as sorcerers and ended it as martyrs.''

﴿وَقَالَ الْمَلأ مِن قَوْمِ فِرْعَونَ أَتَذَرُ مُوسَى وَقَوْمَهُ لِيُفْسِدُواْ فِى الاٌّرْضِ وَيَذَرَكَ وَءالِهَتَكَ قَالَ سَنُقَتِّلُ أَبْنَآءَهُمْ وَنَسْتَحْيِـى نِسَآءَهُمْ وَإِنَّا فَوْقَهُمْ قَـهِرُونَ - قَالَ مُوسَى لِقَوْمِهِ اسْتَعِينُواْ بِاللَّهِ وَاصْبِرُواْ إِنَّ الأَرْضَ للَّهِ يُورِثُهَا مَن يَشَآءُ مِنْ عِبَادِهِ وَالْعَـقِبَةُ لِلْمُتَّقِينَ ﴾

﴿قَالُواْ أُوذِينَا مِن قَبْلِ أَن تَأْتِيَنَا وَمِن بَعْدِ مَا جِئْتَنَا قَالَ عَسَى رَبُّكُمْ أَن يُهْلِكَ عَدُوَّكُمْ وَيَسْتَخْلِفَكُمْ فِى الاٌّرْضِ فَيَنظُرَ كَيْفَ تَعْمَلُونَ ﴾

(127. The chiefs of Fir`awn's people said: "Will you leave Musa and his people to spread mischief in the land, and to abandon you and your gods'' He said: "We will kill their sons, and let their women live, and we have indeed irresistible power over them.'') (128. Musa said to his people: "Seek help in Allah and be patient. Verily, the earth is Allah's. He gives it as a heritage to whom He wills of His servants; and the (blessed) end is for the pious and righteous persons.'') (129. They said: "We suffered troubles before you came to us, and since you have come to us.'' He said: "It may be that your Lord will destroy your enemy and make you successors on the earth, so that He may see how you act'')

 
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