Surah Baqar (No. 2) Verses 284-6)
The last Ruku
The Last Ruku of Surah Baqar
In Surah Fatihah believers have the best of prayers, as well as the essence of the Quran. The last Ruku of Surah Baqar includes certain articles of faith, a prayer which is one of the numbers of other inspiring prayers which the Quran teaches us. Pickthall has rendered into English the verses (II-284 to 286) as follows:
"Unto Allah belongeth whatsoever is in the heavens and whatsoever is in the earth; and whether ye make known what is in your minds or hide it, Allah will bring you to account for it. He will forgive whom He will and He will punish whom He will. He is able to do all things.
"The Messenger believeth in that which hath been revealed unto him from his Lord and (so do) the believers. Each one believeth in Allah and His angels and His scriptures and His messengers - We make no distinction between any of His messengers - and they say:
'We hear and we obey. (Grant us) Thy forgiveness, our Lord. Unto Thee is the journeying'.
"Allah tasketh not a soul beyond its capacity. For it (is only) that which it hath earned,
and against it (only) that which it hath deserved.
Our Lord! Condemn us not if we forget or make mistake.
Our Lord! Lay not on us such a burden as Thou didst lay on those before us.
Our Lord! Impose not us that which we have not the strength to bear!
Pardon us, absolve us, and have mercy on us, Thou art our Protector, and give us victory over the disbelieving folk.
- Allah's sovereignty is supreme. A believer's realization of this saves him from bowing to, or being impressed by false gods of any sort. It also imparts to believers a peace of mind which cannot otherwise be attained.
- The warning that we shall be brought to account for whatever evil may be in our minds, declared or concealed. It is a very powerful safeguard against all evil deeds.
- Allah tasketh not any soul beyond its capacity. Satan is always with us to incite us to evil by putting evil thoughts in our minds. These thoughts have a way of entering our minds without our knowing it. If we cannot prevent Satan's incitements, we certainly can avoid the harbouring in our minds of thoughts of evil prompted by Satan. It is our duty to purge our minds of all evil thoughts the moment we become aware of them. It is a sin to harbour thoughts of evil like malice, envy, deceit, lewdness (which includes all forms of obscenity), greed, self-pity (which constitutes the grave ingratitude to Allah), despair, and arrogance.
- The Quran tells us how to resist Satan's incitements to evil. The moment Satan puts an evil thought in our minds we must remember Allah and seek refuge in Him - If an incitement from Satan incites you, then seek refuge in Allah:
"Verily, He is Hearer, Knower. Verily, those who ward off evil, when a suggestion from Satan assails them they remember Allah's guidance and they become seers." (VII-200 and 201);
" "And if an incitement from Satan incites you, then seek refuge in Allah. Verily He is the Hearer, Knower."
A believer has full reliance on the All-Merciful Allah, and with His help it is easy for him to resist the incitements of Satan who has no power over those who believe and put trust in their Lord. Satan has power over those who make a friend of him and those who are Mushrik (XVI-99; 100). It is important to remember that the term Mushrik applies not only to those who worship gods of wood and stone, but also those who worship any person or things beside Allah:
" Hast thou seen him who chooseth for his god his own lust?" (XXV-43)
"Hast thou seen him who maketh his desire his god?" (XVL-23)
Believers of the earlier days were staunch in faith and steadfast followers of the Sirat-i-Mustaqim, that is, Islam, and lived up to the standard set by the Quran for man as Allah's vicegerent on earth. They reaped bounteous rewards from Allah and they made an invaluable contribution to human progress.