|The Lesson taken from the Destroyed Towns|
When Allah mentioned the story of the Prophets and what happened with them and their nations -- how He destroyed the disbelievers and saved the believers -- He goes on to say,
﴿ذَلِكَ مِنْ أَنْبَآءِ الْقُرَى﴾
(That is some of the news of the (population of ) towns) meaning, news of them
﴿نَقُصُّهُ عَلَيْكَ مِنْهَا قَآئِمٌ﴾
(which We relate unto you; of them, some are (still) standing,) This means still remaining.
(and some have been (already) reaped.) This means totally destroyed.
(We wronged them not,) This means, "When We destroyed them.''
﴿وَلَـكِن ظَلَمُواْ أَنفُسَهُمْ﴾
(but they wronged themselves.) their rejecting their Messengers and disbelieving in them.
﴿فَمَا أَغْنَتْ عَنْهُمْ ءَالِهَتَهُمُ﴾
(So their gods, profited them ﴿not﴾...) This is referring to their idols that they used to worship and invoke.
﴿مِن دُونِ اللَّهِ مِن شَىْءٍ﴾
(other than Allah naught) the idols did not benefit them, nor did they save them when Allah's com- mand came for their destruction.
﴿وَمَا زَادُوهُمْ غَيْرَ تَتْبِيبٍ﴾
(nor did they add aught to them but destruction.) Mujahid, Qatadah and others said, "This means loss. Because the reason for their destruction and their ruin was that they followed those false gods. Therefore, they were losers in this life and the Hereafter.''
(102. Such is the punishment of your Lord when He seizes the (population of) towns while they are doing wrong. Verily, His punishment is painful (and) severe.) It is as though Allah is saying, "Just as We have destroyed these wicked generations who rejected their Messengers, We will do the same to any who are like them.''
﴿إِنَّ أَخْذَهُ أَلِيمٌ شَدِيدٌ﴾
(Verily, His punishment is painful (and) severe.) In the Two Sahihs, it is recorded that Abu Musa said that the Messenger of Allah said,
«إِنَّ اللهَ لَيُمْلِي لِلظَّالِمِ حَتَّى إِذَا أَخَذَهُ لَمْ يُفْلِتْه»
(Verily, Allah gives respite to a wrongdoer until He seizes him and he cannot escape.) Then the Messenger of Allah recited,
﴿وَكَذلِكَ أَخْذُ رَبِّكَ إِذَا أَخَذَ الْقُرَى وَهِىَ ظَـلِمَةٌ﴾
(Such is the punishment of your Lord when He seizes the towns while they are doing wrong. )
﴿إِنَّ فِى ذلِكَ لآيَةً لِّمَنْ خَافَ عَذَابَ الاٌّخِرَةِ ذلِكَ يَوْمٌ مَّجْمُوعٌ لَّهُ النَّاسُ وَذَلِكَ يَوْمٌ مَّشْهُودٌ - وَمَا نُؤَخِّرُهُ إِلاَّ لاًّجَلٍ مَّعْدُودٍ - يَوْمَ يَأْتِ لاَ تَكَلَّمُ نَفْسٌ إِلاَّ بِإِذْنِهِ فَمِنْهُمْ شَقِىٌّ وَسَعِيدٌ ﴾
(103. Indeed in that (there) is a sure lesson for those who fear the torment of the Hereafter. That is a Day whereon mankind will be gathered together, and that is a Day when all will be present.) (104. And We delay it only for a term (already) fixed.) (105. On the Day when it comes, no person shall speak except by His (Allah's) leave. Some among them will be wretched and (others) blessed.)
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