Verses describing past nations
Fatwa No: 347065

  • Fatwa Date:28-2-2017 - Jumaadaa Al-Aakhir 2, 1438
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Question

Assalaamu alaykum. I was just wondering; are any of these verses talking in the past tense instead of the present tense, or are any of them in the present tense? The Arabic word is Tilka; the verses are 27:52, 28:58, 22:45, and 91:14. I know that the Arabic word Tilka only appears in 27:52 and 28:58. And what does the Arabic word Khaawiyatan mean? Can it mean 'destroyed into pieces of dust', if you know what I mean, or does it just mean 'decaying'?

Answer

All perfect praise be to Allah, The Lord of the worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allah and that Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) is His slave and Messenger.

 

All these verses are about the past because they are about the previous nations.

As regards the Arabic word Khaawiyah, then the Tafseer (exegesis) of Al-Baghawi reads, “{Fa-hiya Khaawiyah} means 'fallen into ruin/collapsed'; {‘ala ‘urooshiha} means 'on its roofs'.

Al-Baghawi also said, “{Fa-tilka buyootuhum khaawiyah}; khaawiyah means 'empty'; {because of the wrong they had done}, i.e. because of their injustice and disbelief.” 

You should know that the Arabic word 'Tilka' is a demonstrative noun for a feminine gender, and it is not restricted to the past or the present tense.

As-Suyooti said in Ham’ Al-Hawaami’ fi sharh Jam’ Al-Jawaami’, “There are ten words that indicate the singular feminine gender: …and 'tilka' (is one of them)…

Allah knows best.

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