The Sabbath-Breakers (Part-2)

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To read the previous part of this story,click here.

Allah the Almighty says: {So when they forgot the remindings that had been given to them}, i.e. were heedless towards the godly preachers, {We rescued those who forbade evil}, i.e. the preaching sect, but {We seized those who did wrong}, i.e. doers of the sinful deed, {with a severe torment}, i.e. a painful punishment, {because they used to rebel against Allah's Command (disobey Allah)}. Then, Allah explained the torment that befell them saying, {So when they exceeded the limits of what they were prohibited, We said to them: "Be you monkeys, despised and rejected}.

Here, the point is that Allah the Almighty informed us that He destroyed the wrong-doers, saved the preaching believers and left the believers who did not practice enjoining the good and forbidding the evil. Scholars disputed regarding the third group. Some said they were granted salvation. And others said that they were destroyed with the wrong-doers. But, the first view is the accepted one by the well-versed scholars, including Ibn 'Abbas head of the interpreters who referred to this opinion on a debate with his master 'lkrimah who upon the victory of Ibn 'Abbas - granted him a valuable garment as a reward.

It should be noted here that the third group were not mentioned with those given salvation even though they despised the sinful deed, with their hearts, because they should have compelled their organs (hand or tongue) to act thereupon and declare  their rejection of the wrong-doers' act. So, they were saved with the preachers because they themselves did not commit the sinful deed, rather they rejected it with their hearts.

Narrated 'Abdur Razzaq after Juraij after a man (whose name is not known) after 'Ikrimah after Ibn 'Abbas; and Malik transmitted from Ibn Ruman, Shaiban, Qatadah and 'Ata 'Al-Kharasani what means: Those who committed the sinful deed were abandoned by the rest of the people of the town. Some of them declared their rejection and denial of their deed. They did not listen to the preachers. Afterwards, they used to stay the night apart from the rest of the people of the town and there were doors or barriers between them and the rest of the people who were anticipating the befalling of punishment over them. One day, their doors did not open till the noon. The people got anxious and sent one of them to see what happened to them from above the barrier. When he looked he found them turned into monkeys with tails, shouting. They opened the doors (barrier) and the monkeys recognized their relatives while their relatives could not recognize them. Thereupon, the preachers said: Did not we forbid you from doing this? The monkeys made a sign with their heads denoting: Yes. Then, 'Abdullah Ibn 'Abbas (May Allah be pleased with him) wept and said: verily, we see many wrong-doings which we do not reject or deny or even make a comment!

Narrated Al-'Ufi after Ibn 'Abbas (May Allah be pleased with him) saying: the young men of the town were turned into monkeys, while the old men into pigs. Moreover, Ibn Abu Hatim narrated from MujaQid after Ibn 'Abbas his saying: they did not live long and they left no offspring. Also, Adpahhaq narrated from Ibn 'Abbas (May Allah be pleased with him): no monster has lived more than three days. In addition, they did not eat, drink or leave offspring.

Narrated Ibn Abu Hatim and Ibn Jarir after Ibn Abu Nujaih from Mujahid his saying: only their hearts and not their figures were turned into monkeys and pigs. This is just like His Statement that reads: {The likeness of those who were entrusted with the (obligation of the) Taurat (Torah) (i. e. to obey its commandments and practice its laws), but who subsequently failed in those (obligations), is as the likeness of a donkey which carries huge burdens of books (but understands nothing from them)}. (Al-Jumu' ah, 5) But, this view seems to be very strange and it contradicts the apparent meaning of the Glorious Qur'an and the concession of the earlier scholars and those who followed them. Allah knows best!

To read the first part of this story,click here.

By: Ibn Katheer Translated by Ali As-Sayed Al-Halawani

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