Al Baqara

Honoring Adam when the Angels prostrated before Him

2.34 Kathir – Ibn Al Kathir Honoring Adam

Honoring Adam when the Angels prostrated before Him

This Ayah mentions the great honor that Allah granted Adam, and Allah reminded Adam’s offspring of this fact. Allah commanded the angels to prostrate before Adam, as this Ayah and many Hadiths testify, such as the Hadith about the intercession that we discussed. There is a Hadith about the supplication of Musa, “O my Lord! Show me Adam who caused us and himself to be thrown out of Paradise.” When Musa met Adam, he said to him, “Are you Adam whom Allah created with His Own Hands, blew life into and commanded the angels to prostrate before” Iblis was among Those ordered to prostrate before Adam, although He was not an Angel

When Allah commanded the angels to prostrate before Adam, Iblis was included in this command. Although Iblis was not an angel, he was trying – and pretending – to imitate the angels’ behavior and deeds, and this is why he was also included in the command to the angels to prostrate before Adam. Satan was criticized for defying that command, as we will explain with detail, Allah willing, when we mention the Tafsir of Allah’s statement,Honoring Adam

إِلاَّ إِبْلِيسَ كَانَ مِنَ الْجِنِّ فَفَسَقَ عَنْ أَمْرِ رَبِّهِ

(Except Iblis (Satan). He was one of the Jinn; he disobeyed the command of his Lord.) (18:50)

Similarly, Muhammad bin Ishaq reported that Ibn `Abbas said, “Before he undertook the path of sin, Iblis was with the angels and was called `Azazil.’ He was among the residents of the earth and was one of the most active worshippers and knowledgeable persons among the angels. This fact caused him to be arrogant. Iblis was from a genus called Jinn.”

The Prostration was before Adam but the Obedience was to Allah

Qatadah commented on Allah’s statement,

وَإِذْ قُلْنَا لِلْمَلَـئِكَةِ اسْجُدُواْ لاًّدَمَ

(And (remember) when We said to the angels: “Prostrate yourselves before Adam.”)

“The obedience was for Allah and the prostration was before Adam. Allah honored Adam and commanded the angels to prostrate before him.” Some people said that this prostration was just a prostration of greeting, peace and honor, hence Allah’s statement,

وَرَفَعَ أَبَوَيْهِ عَلَى الْعَرْشِ وَخَرُّواْ لَهُ سُجَّدَا وَقَالَ يأَبَتِ هَـذَا تَأْوِيلُ رُؤْيَـى مِن قَبْلُ قَدْ جَعَلَهَا رَبِّى حَقًّا

(And he (Prophet Yusuf) raised his parents to the throne and they fell down before him prostrate. And he said: “O my father! This is the interpretation of my dream aforetime! My Lord has made it come true!”) (12:100)

The practice of prostrating was allowed for previous nations, but was repealed for ours. Mu`adh said to the Prophet, “I visited Ash-Sham and found that they used to prostate before their priests and scholars. You, O Messenger of Allah, are more deserving of prostration.” The Prophet said,

«لَا لَوْ كُنْتُ آمِرًا بَشَرًا أنْ يَسْجُدَ لِبَشَرٍ لَأَمَرْتُ الْمَرْأةَ أنْ تَسْجُدَ لِزَوجِهَا مِنْ عِظَمِ حَقِّهِ عَلَيْهَا»

(No. If I was to command any human to prostrate before another human, I would command the wife to prostrate before her husband because of the enormity of his right on her.)

Ar-Razi agreed with this view. Also, Qatadah said about Allah’s statement,

فَسَجَدُواْ إِلاَّ إِبْلِيسَ أَبَى وَاسْتَكْبَرَ وَكَانَ مِنَ الْكَـفِرِينَ

(And they prostrated except Iblis (Shaytan), he refused and was proud and was one of the disbelievers (disobedient to Allah).)

“Iblis, the enemy of Allah, envied Adam because Allah honored Adam. He said, `I was created from fire, and he was created from clay.’ Therefore, the first error ever committed was arrogance, for the enemy of Allah was too arrogant to prostrate before Adam.” I – Ibn Kathir – say, the following is recorded in the Sahih,

«لَا يَدْخُلُ الْجَنَّةَ مَنْ كَانَ فِي قَلْبِهِ مِثْقَالُ حَبَّةٍ مِنْ خَرْدَلٍ مِنْ كِبْر»

(No person who has the weight of a mustard seed of arrogance in his heart shall enter Paradise.)

Iblis had disbelief, arrogance, and rebellion, all of which caused him to be expelled from the holy presence of Allah, and His mercy.

tafsir ibn kathir

Honoring Adam

Honoring Adam

Honoring Adam

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