Those who persistently deny the truth (disbelievers)—it is the same whether one (i.e., Prophet Mohammad) warns them or not—they are unlikely to believe. (It is as if ) God has sealed off their hearts and their hearing and placed a covering over their eyes, and this is a serious punishment for them.
There are people who say, “We believe in God and the Day of Judgment,” but this is a false claim. They attempt to deceive God and those who have faith, but in reality they deceive none but themselves, and they are unable to perceive. They have a disease (of disbelief ) in their hearts, and God has increased the intensity of that disease as a form of severe punishment since they make false claims.
When they are advised not to make mischief on Earth, they say, “We are peacemakers!” Now, in reality they are the mischief-makers, but they seem not to perceive themselves as such. When they are advised to believe as other people believe, they say, “Shall we believe in the manner of the fools?” Now, they are the real fools, but they do not seem to understand it as such. When they meet people of faith, they say, “We believe like you,” but when they are alone with their evil companions, they say, “We are with you; we were just mocking (the others).” God will pay them back for their mockery by letting them continue to wander in their blind rebellion. These people buy error instead of guidance, and their bargain brings them neither profit nor guidance.
People who are inclined to disbelieve in God will find many of the arguments to believe to be of no value to them. In the Qur’an, and in other Books of revelation, God eloquently describes His attributes, His creations, and His wonderful plan to provide meaning to life and existence. Yet, many people find those arguments, examples, and analogies to be inadequate for changing their minds. In our world, infested with terrorism, counter-terrorism, ethnic cleansing, false beliefs, and the rise of fundamentalism in all religions, we often see people making false claims in the name of God or in the name of ideologies and saying one thing while meaning another. The people of faith (Muslims in particular) have to pay close attention to their stand as a people of faith and to how they treat their fellow Muslims as well as others. As God said, “ . . . And let not the hatred of a people—because they barred you from reaching the Sacred Mosque—incite you to acts of transgression. And help one another in righteous deeds and responsible acts . . . ” (5:2). The rise of colonialism, the slavery of Africans, the Holocaust, the Arab-Israeli conflicts, the rise of communism, and the worship of materialism all were or are based on false pretenses. Therefore, the people of faith have to rise to the occasion and provide the correct perspectives for the betterment of the human race.
These eleven verses describe the condition of people who habitually disbelieve and persist in their disbelief while abusing people of faith and not lever- aging their God-given faculties of sight, hearing, and comprehension to understand and reflect on the realities of life.
As God warns against false claims, the people of faith, especially Muslims, have a particular responsibility to ensure that they mean what they say and that they act responsibly with their families, in their communities, and in a global context so that they can create a secure world for themselves and provide security and peace for all. This is a fundamental responsibility of Muslims and, unfortunately, is most neglected by Muslims and their communities and countries.
- Alladhina Kafaru
*Definition can be found in the Glossary*