Allah’s Power


وَسُئِلَ الْحَسَنُ عَنْ قَوْلِهِ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ : ( وَيُرْسِلُ الصَّوَاعِقَ ) الْآيَةَ ، قَالَ كَانَ رَجُلٌ مِنْ طَوَاغِيتِ  الْعَرَبِ بَعَثَ إِلَيْهِ النَّبِيُّ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ نَفَرًا يَدْعُونَهُ إِلَى اللَّهِ وَرَسُولِهِ . فَقَالَ لَهُمْ : أَخْبِرُونِي عَنْ رَبِّ  مُحَمَّدٍ هَذَا الَّذِي تَدْعُونَنِي إِلَيْهِ مِمَّ هُوَ ؟ مِنْ ذَهَبٍ أَوْ فِضَّةٍ أَوْ حَدِيدٍ أَوْ نُحَاسٍ ؟ فَاسْتَعْظَمَ الْقَوْمُ مَقَالَتَهُ فَانْصَرَفُوا إِلَى النَّبِيِّ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ فَقَالُوا : يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ ، مَا رَأَيْنَا رَجُلًا أَكْفَرَ قَلْبًا وَلَا أَعْتَى عَلَى اللَّهِ مِنْهُ ؟ فَقَالَ : ارْجِعُوا إِلَيْهِ ، فَرَجَعُوا إِلَيْهِ فَجَعَلَ لَا يَزِيدُهُمْ عَلَى مِثْلِ مَقَالَتِهِ الْأُولَى ، وَقَالَ : أُجِيبُ  مُحَمَّدًا إِلَى رَبٍّ لَا أَرَاهُ وَلَا أَعْرِفُهُ . فَانْصَرَفُوا وَقَالُوا : يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ مَا زَادَنَا عَلَى مَقَالَتِهِ الْأُولَى وَأَخْبَثَ .

Sayyidina al-Hasan (r) was asked about Allah’s saying:”and He [it is who] lets loose the thunderbolts” to the end of the verse 13:13, and he said

There was a man from the oppressors of the Arabs, to whom the Prophet (s) sent some people to call him to Allah and His Prophet (s). He said to them: “Tell me about the Lord of  Muhammad (s), whom you are calling me to, from what is He made? From gold or silver or steel or stone? “So  the people got up from what he said and left to go to the Prophet (s) and they said, “O Prophet of Allah! We have not seen a man whose heart is more disbelieving and nor hardest of hearts towards Allah than him.”  He (s) said to them, “return to him” so they returned to him and he kept insisting on what he had said the first time. And he said, “Shall I respond to Muhammad for a lord that I do not see nor do I know?” So they departed and said, “O Prophet of Allah! We did not get [any response] from him other than what he said the first time and even more foolish!”

فَقَالَ : ارْجِعُوا إِلَيْهِ ، فَرَجَعُوا ، فَبَيْنَمَا هُمْ عِنْدَهُ يُنَازِعُونَهُ وَيَدْعُونَهُ ، وَهُوَ يَقُولُ هَذِهِ الْمَقَالَةَ إِذِ ارْتَفَعَتْ سَحَابَةٌ ، فَكَانَتْ فَوْقَ رُءُوسِهِمْ ، فَرَعَدَتْ وَبَرَقَتْ ، وَرَمَتْ بِصَاعِقَةٍ ، فَاحْتَرَقَ الْكَافِرُ ، وَهُمْ جُلُوسٌ ، فَجَاءُوا يَسْعَوْنَ لِيُخْبِرُوا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ ، فَاسْتَقْبَلَهُمْ قَوْمٌ مِنْ أَصْحَابِ النَّبِيِّ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ ، فَقَالُوا لَهُمْ : احْتَرَقَ صَاحِبُكُمْ . فَقَالُوا : مِنْ أَيْنَ عَلِمْتُمْ فَقَالُوا : أَوْحَى اللَّهُ إِلَى النَّبِيِّ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ : (  وَيُرْسِلُ الصَّوَاعِقَ فَيُصِيبُ بِهَا مَنْ يَشَاءُ وَهُمْ يُجَادِلُونَ فِي اللَّهِ  )

He (s) said, “Return to him.” So they returned and as they were in his presence arguing and calling him, and he was repeating the same things he said before, then a cloud rose up and it was above their heads, and it thundered and shot forth lightning and then it shot a bolt of lightning which struck the unbeliever and burnt him up, as they were sitting.

So they came quickly to inform Allah’s Prophet (s) and [as they arrived] a group of Companions of the Prophet (s) greeted them and said to them, ‘Your companion has been burned up.’ They said, ‘From where did you come to know this?’ [and they replied] ‘It was revealed to the Prophet (s) “and He [it is who] lets loose the thunderbolts and strikes with them whom He wills. And yet, they stubbornly argue about God, notwithstanding [all evidence] that He alone has the power to contrive whatever His unfathomable wisdom wills!” (13:13)

Tafsir al-Baghawi.

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