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Has the verse « قُلْ لِلْمُخَلَّفِينَ مِنَ الْأَعْرَابِ ... » been revealed about the wars between Abu Bakr and the people of Radah (Rebels)?
ID: 11 Publish Date: 06 January 2016 - 10:02 Count Views: 2751
Question & Answer » Imamat and Caliphate
Has the verse « قُلْ لِلْمُخَلَّفِينَ مِنَ الْأَعْرَابِ ... » been revealed about the wars between Abu Bakr and the people of Radah (Rebels)?

Inquirer: Ali Reza

Explaining the Question:

Has the verse«قُلْ لِلْمُخَلَّفِينَ مِنَ الْأَعْرَابِ سَتُدْعَوْنَ»  been revealed about the wars between Abu Bakr and the people of Radah (Rebels)?

I have seen in one of the Sunni websites that they have adduced this verse to support the Caliphate of Abu Bakr. I request you to explain it.

God in the verse 16 of Sura al-Fat 'h calls Arabs and says:

قُلْ لِلْمُخَلَّفِينَ مِنَ الْأَعْرَابِ سَتُدْعَوْنَ إِلَى قَوْمٍ أُولِي بَأْسٍ شَدِيدٍ تُقَاتِلُونَهُمْ أَوْ يُسْلِمُونَ فَإِنْ تُطِيعُوا يُؤْتِكُمُ اللَّهُ أَجْرًا حَسَنًا وَإِنْ تَتَوَلَّوْا كَمَا تَوَلَّيْتُمْ مِنْ قَبْلُ يُعَذِّبْكُمْ عَذَابًا أَلِيمًا .

Say to the Bedouins who were left to stay behind, ‘You will be called against a people of a great might: they will embrace Islam, or you will fight them. So if you obey, Allah will give you a good reward; but if you turn away like you turned away before, He will punish you with a painful punishment.’

After the revelation of this verse there didn’t occur any battle except the Battle of Tabuk and also in the Battle of Tabuk didn’t occur any fighting between the warriors and no infidel converted to Islam. So perhaps it means to fight against apostate Arabs in the time of Seddiq 's caliphate, and fighting against infidels & people of Iran and Rome in the time of Farooq 's caliphate otherwise this part of the verse « تقاتلونهم او يسلمون » would be nonsense. So if the caliphate of the two mentioned Caliphs is not based on truth the divine promise will not be proved and the dignity of Muslims is superior than attributing not keeping the promise to God.

One of the verses which is used by Sunnis to prove the caliphate of Abu Bakr and Umar is the verse 16 of Sura al-Fat 'h which has been mentioned in the example above. God willing, with the help of exegesis books of Sunnis we will reply to it.

1.   According to the stipulations of many commentators and also Ibn Hayyan Andolesi this verse has been revealed in the 6 AH and after the Treaty of Hudaybiya. Ibn Hayan comments in this regard:

هذه السورة مدنية ، وعن ابن عباس أنها نزلت بالمدينة ، ولعل بعضا منها نزل ، والصحيح أنها نزلت بطريق منصرفه صلى الله عليه وسلم ) من الحديبية ، سنة ست من الهجرة ، فهي تعد في المدني .

This Sura is Medinan. Ibn Abbas has said that this verse has been revealed in Medina. It might have been revealed part of the Sura in Medina but the most authentic saying is that this verse has been revealed in 6 AH and after coming back from the Treaty of Hudaybiya so it a Medinan Sura.

-Tafsir Al-Bahr Al-Mohit, Ibn Hayan Al-Andolesi, v 8 p 89

So it is not acceptable to claim that after revealing this verse there has not been occurred any battle at the time of the prophet (PBUH). Because after revealing this verse there have been many Battles such as the battle of Hunain with the people of Hawazan and Ta 'if and also the battle of Mutah with the infidels of Rome each of which were among the most severe and difficult wars at the time of the prophet (PBUH). So there is no reason for us to consider the time of occurrence of this verse after the death of the prophet (PBUH).

Jalal al-Din Suyouti of the great Sunni scholars and commentators says in this regard:

قل للمخلفين من الاعراب ستدعون إلى قوم أولى باس شديد قال فدعوا يوم حنين إلى هوازن وثقيف فمنهم من أحسن الإجابة ورغب في الجهاد .

Say to the Bedouins who were left to stay behind, ‘You will be called to a great fight very soon. So they were called in the day of Hunain Battle, some of them respond to God 's call and were enthusiast toward Jihad (fighting against the enemies of God).

-Al-Dor Al-Manthur, Jalal Al-Din Al-Siuti, v 6 p 72

He also adds the following to support his view:

أخرج سعيد ابن منصور وابن جرير وابن المنذر والبيهقي عن عكرمة وسعيد بن جبير رضي الله عنه في قوله ستدعون إلى قوم أولى باس شديد قال هوازن يوم حنين .

Saeid Ibn Mansour and Ibn Jarir and Ibn Munzar and Beihaqi have quoted from 'Akramah and Saeid Ibn Jabir that the verse « ستدعون الي قوم أولي بأس شديد » is about the fight with Hawazan on the day of Hunain Battle.  

-Al-Dor Al-Manthur, Jalal Al-Din Al-Siuti, v 6 p 73

2.   Sunni scholars have argued this reasoning. Fakhr Razi, of the greatest Sunni commentators has detailed in this regard as follows:

وفي قوله * ( ستدعون إلى قوم أولي بأس شديد ) * وجوه ... ثالثها : هوازن وثقيف غزاهم النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم ، وأقوى الوجوه هو أن الدعاء كان من النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم وإن كان الأظهر غيره ...

There are some comments about the verse * ( ستدعون إلى قوم أولي بأس شديد ) * but the third comment is that this verse has been revealed about the tribes of Hawazan and Saqif with whom the prophet (PBUH) had fought. The most authentic comment is this third quotation because the prophet (PBUH) himself had invited people to battle, although it seems that the case is another thing.

-Tafsir Al-Razi, Al-Razi, v 28 p 92

And al-Gharnati al-Karbi says:

( ستدعون إلى قوم أولي بأس شديد ) * اختلف في هؤلاء القوم على أربعة أقوال الأول أنهم هوازن ومن حارب النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم في غزوة خيبر والثاني أنهم الروم إذ دعا رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم إلى قتالهم في غزوة تبوك والثالث أنهم أهل الردة من بني حنيفة وغيرهم الذين قاتلهم أبو بكر الصديق والرابع أنهم االفرس ويتقوى الأول والثاني بأن ذلك ظهر في حياة رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم .

There are four different comments about the verse « ستدعون ... »: 1. This verse has been revealed about the Hawazan (the tribe situated betweenMakkah and Taif) and those who were in Khaybar who fought against the holy prophet (PBUH). 2. This verse has been revealed about Romans with whom prophet (PBUH) had invited people to fight against. 3. This verse has been revealed about the people of Radah from Bani Hanifa Tribe and others whom Abu Bakr fought with. 4. About the people of Fars.

The first and the second case is more authentic, because these invitations has been occurred at the time of prophet (PBUH).

-Al-Tashil le Olum Al-tanzil, Al-Gharanati Al-Kalabi, v 4 p 53

Consequently this verse has nothing to do with the caliphate of Abu Bakr and Umar.

Good Luck

The group of replying to misgivings.

The Research Institute of Hazrat valiasr (may God hasten his deliverance).


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