It therefore means that every Muslim must obey and implement the command of the Prophet (S.A) more than anyone else, including one’s parents. If one’s parents oppose any command of the Holy Prophet (S.A), their obedience in that matter is not permissible. Similarly, the implementation of his command takes precedence over the desires of the individual. (Ma’ariful Quran vol.7 pg. 94)
The verse also conveys the message that a believer must love the Prophet (S.A) more than anyone else, including himself. In this regard, the Prophet (S.A) is reported to have said, ‘None of you can be a believer until I become more beloved to him than his father, his son and the entire mankind’. (Bukhari, Muslim)
It is also recorded that Abdullah bin Hisham said, ‘We were with the Prophet (S.A) and he was holding the hand of Umar bin Al Khattab. Umar (R.A) said to him, ‘O Allah’s Messenger! You are dearer to me than everything except my own self’. The Prophet (S.A) said, ‘No, by Him in whose hand is my soul, (you will not have complete faith) till I am dearer to you than your own self’. Then Umar (R.A) said to him, ‘Now, by Allah, you are dearer to me than my own self’. The Prophet (S.A) said, ‘Now, O Umar, (now you are a believer). (Bukhari)
These traditions, as well as others, show that a believer must have a great amount of love for the Prophet (S.A) to the extent that the Prophet (S.A) becomes more beloved to him than all human beings including his own self. While writing on this topic, many great scholars have mentioned signs of true love for the Prophet (S.A). In this respect, the great scholar Qazi Iyaz (A.R) has stated, ‘From among the signs of true love for the Prophet (S.A) are:
1) One should practice, help and establish the Sunnah of the Prophet (S.A).
2) One should protect and defend the sacred Shariah which was revealed to him.
3) To have a burning desire and yearning in the heart, and to have the intention to sacrifice one’s life and wealth to be with the Prophet (S.A) as his companion, if one was able to do so. (Sharh An Nawawi)
Along with these, Hafiz Ibn Hajar (A.R) has written that signs of true love for the Prophet (S.A) also include:
- i. Supporting and protecting the Sunnah of the Prophet (S.A).
- ii. Guarding and shielding the sacred Shariah from those who oppose it.
- iii. Inviting to good and forbidding evil’. (Fathul Baari)
Allama Aini (A.R) has also written, ‘It must be clearly understood that love for the Prophet (S.A) requires one to follow and obey the Prophet (S.A), and refrain from disobeying him. These are also from the essential duties of Islam’. (Umdatul Qaari)
Those who have the above signs are fortunate in that they have true love for the Prophet (S.A) in their hearts and should thank Allah for this. Those who do not have these (signs) should try to develop them so that they would not be considered as ‘deceiving Allah and the believers’, with respect to their expression that they love the Messenger of Allah (S.A).
Having explained the close relation the Prophet (S.A) has with the believers, the verse (i.e. v.6) goes further to highlight the relation that his beloved wives have with the believers. About this, Allah says, ‘And his wives are their mothers’. It means that the pure and blessed wives of the Prophet (S.A) are considered to be the mothers of the believers with respect to the essentiality of honoring and respecting them, and also with respect to the prohibition of marriage to any one of them. It is therefore essential upon all believers, males and females, to show respect and to honor the wives of the Prophet (S.A) like their own mothers. The verse establishes the fact that just as it is totally prohibited to marry one’s mother, so too it will be unlawful for a person to marry the wives of the Prophet (S.A) after his demise. This prohibition is clearly outlined in another verse. However, it was still essential that one observes the laws of Hijab with regards to them.
Another subject discussed in the verse (i.e. v.6) is mentioned in the following words, ‘And blood relations among each other have closer personal ties in the Decree of Allah than the believers and the Muhajirûn, except that you do kindness to those brothers’.
The verse establishes the fact that those who are connected by blood and related to each other, is closer to each other than their closeness with other believers. This verse indicates to the law that those who are blood related, are more deserving of the inheritance of one another than those who are not related to them.
The above verse was revealed to change a practice that was adopted in the early period of Islam. It is stated that when the Muslims from Makkah migrated to Madina, the Prophet (S.A) joined ties of brotherhood between a Muhajir (immigrant – Muslim from Makkah) and an Ansar (helper – Muslim from Madina). This brotherhood between the Muhajireen and Ansar became so strong that they even shared from each other in the matter of inheritance. The above verse (v.6) was revealed to abrogate this practice, and to establish that in the matter of inheritance, people will inherit from each other from among the blood related family members. It is for this reason, Allah said, ‘And blood relations among each other have closer personal ties in the Decree of Allah than the believers and the immigrants’. Allah then said, ‘except that you do kindness to those friends’. Here, Allah informed the Muslims that although they could not grant a share in the inheritance to those who were known as ‘brothers in Islam’ (like the brotherhood of the Muhajir and Ansar) or to those relatives who were not entitled to inheritance, they could still be kind to them during their lives by helping them in different ways, and can also make a will for them in anything they wish, at the time of death.
At the end of the verse, Allah says, ‘This has been written in the Book’. While commenting on this, some exegetes has stated that here ‘the Book’ refers to the ‘Lawhul Mahfooz’ (the protected tablet).