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Tafseer Surah Al-Baqarah Verse 164

From the Book, Introduction to the Tafseer of the Quran, by the Ameer of Hizb ut Tahrir, the eminent jurist and statesman, Ata Bin Khalil Abu Al-Rashtah:

إِنَّ فِي خَلْقِ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالأَرْضِ وَاخْتِلاَفِ اللَّيْلِ وَالنَّهَارِ وَالْفُلْكِ الَّتِي تَجْرِي فِي الْبَحْرِ بِمَا يَنفَعُ النَّاسَ وَمَا أَنزَلَ اللَّهُ مِنْ السَّمَاءِ مِنْ مَاءٍ فَأَحْيَا بِهِ الأَرْضَ بَعْدَ مَوْتِهَا وَبَثَّ فِيهَا مِنْ كُلِّ دَابَّةٍ وَتَصْرِيفِ الرِّيَاحِ وَالسَّحَابِ الْمُسَخَّرِ بَيْنَ السَّمَاءِ وَالأَرْضِ لآياتٍ لِقَوْمٍ يَعْقِلُونَ

“Indeed, in the creation of the heavens and earth, and the alternation of the night and the day, and the [great] ships which sail through the sea with that which benefits people, and what Allah has sent down from the heavens of rain, giving life thereby to the earth after its lifelessness and dispersing therein every [kind of] moving creature, and [His] directing of the winds and the clouds controlled between the heaven and the earth are signs for a people who use reason.”

(Surah Al Baqarah 2:164)

Allah (swt) clarifies in these ayaat the following:

When Allah (ta’ala) revealed,

وَإِلَهُكُمْ إِلَهٌ وَاحِدٌ

Your god (swt) is one God (swt).”

The mushrikeen (polytheists) denied that questioning as to how many gods would be one God. Allah (swt) in this verse invites them to reflect upon the Creations of Allah (swt) to come to discover and believe through them in one Creator that created this universe and linking the parts together in a precise system, accurately indicates the unity of his Creator and greatness:

  1. There are heavens and the earth, including the stars and planets, are each in an orbit in a wondrously precise system. Nothing comes out of its orbital pathway and nothing collides with another.
  2. There is the night and day, their succession and the differences in their lengths, conditions, darkness, light and illumination, their utilization for sleep and living.
  3. And there are the ships that sail in the sea, carried by water and driven by the winds, surrounded by waves that clash and collide with them. Yet, despite being in the midst of the waves and swells of the sea, they bear that which benefits people of travel and trade.
  4. Then there is the water that descends as rain from the heavens to the earth, sent down as Allah (swt) pleases, such that the earth is revived after its death and becomes covered with lush greenery, after having become withered, yellow.
  5. And there are the animals that spread on the earth, which multiply, reproduce and live off that which the earth gives forth, through the water that falls upon it.
  6. Then there are winds that flow by the command of Allah (swt) and there are the providing clouds that through Allah’s (swt) power are found between heaven and earth, driven by Allah (swt) as He wills, directed so as to rain here or there.

All of these are in a wondrous and precise pattern. None of these break out from their system: neither the heavens, falling upon the earth, nor the night, outstripping the day, nor the sea nor the orbits, outside of their attributes and properties. And neither do the rain nor wind nor clouds violate the command of Allah (swt).

There is no chaos or disturbance, no breaking out from the path or orbit, no greenery without water, no sea in the wrong place nor wind at the wrong time. Furthermore, the heavens and the earth, and all of the creatures within them, proceed according to what has been created of them,

مَا تَرَى فِي خَلْقِ الرَّحْمَنِ مِنْ تَفَاوُتٍ فَارْجِعْ الْبَصَرَ هَلْ تَرَى مِنْ فُطُور

[And] who created seven heavens in layers. You do not see in the creation of the Most Merciful any inconsistency. So return [your] vision [to the sky]; do you see any breaks?”

(Surah al-Mulk 67:3)

This wondrous system is precise for the creatures of Allah (swt) on the earth and in the heavens, and between the earth and the heavens, being signs for those who understand.

The order in the universe and its discipline, and the relations of its components with each other, in a well-ordered system, all pronounce that the Creator is one, Allah (swt) is the Lord of the worlds.

وَإِلَهُكُمْ إِلَهٌ وَاحِدٌ لاَ إِلَهَ إِلاَّ هُوَ الرَّحْمَنُ الرَّحِيمُ

And your god is one God. There is no deity [worthy of worship] except Him, the Entirely Merciful, the Especially Merciful.”

(Surah Al-Baqarah 2:159-163)

The reflection upon the creatures of Allah (swt) leads to the conviction that there is only one Mighty Creator, none to be worshiped but him and there is no other god but Him.

Allah the All-Wise, the All-Knowing, has made in His creatures signs of His Greatness, His Oneness and His Mercy. And the intelligent one is the one who contemplates and considers. He does not ponder over the creatures fleetingly and in a cursory manner, but instead comprehends them with considered and thoughtful comprehension.

Aisha (ra) said that RasulAllah ﷺ when he read this verse, said:

«ويل لمن قرأها ولم يتفكر فيها»

“Woe to those who read it and did not think about it.” [ad-Dar al-Manthur]