Interpretation of verse [33:23]
Fatwa No: 366232

  • Fatwa Date:3-1-2018 - Rabee' Al-Aakhir 16, 1439
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Question

Assalaamu alaykum. Verse 33:23 makes it sound like we, the Muslims, should wish to die, as if we want death.

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.

This verse does not mean wishing for death; rather, it means praising the Companions for fulfilling what they had promised Allah until they died while doing so.

Tafseer Al-Khaazin reads:

"The verse in which Allah says (what means): {Among the believers are men true to what they promised Allah} [Quran 33:23] means that they adhered to their covenant and their promise. {Among them is he who has fulfilled his vow}; meaning he kept his promise and was patient in striving in the cause of Allah until he died as a martyr. It was also said that {fulfilled his vow} means met his appointed time, so he was killed while loyal to his covenant, in reference to Hamzah and his Companions; or it means that he strived his best in fulfilling the covenant; or it means that he was martyred in the Battle of Badr and the Battle of Uhud. {Among them is he who awaits}; meaning those who remained of the believers after them are waiting for either of the two matters: martyrdom or victory over the enemies. {And they did not alter [the terms of their commitment]} i.e. did not change their covenant in any way."

The Tafseer (Quran exegesis) of As-Sa’di reads:

"Allah said that the hypocrites promised Him not to turn their backs in flight but they broke that promise; so He mentioned –in contrast – that the believers fulfilled their promise which they promised Him, as Allah says (what means): {Among the believers are men true to what they promised Allah.} [Quran 33:23]; meaning that they have fulfilled it and completed it, and they strived their utmost in pleasing Him and sacrificed themselves for His obedience. {Among them is he who has fulfilled his vow}; meaning his will and objective, and the obligation which he must fulfill, so he died in the Cause of Allah, or he died while fulfilling that obligation and did not lack in anything when doing it. {Among them is he who awaits}; meaning waiting to complete what he is obliged to do and awaitint his chance to complete it, and he hopes to complete it while striving his utmost in doing so. {And they did not alter [the terms of their commitment]} like others who altered it; rather, they were in the course of fulfilling their covenant, they preserved it and did not change in any way."

Allah knows best.

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