03 Nov Sūratu’l-Māedah [The Table] : (5:54).Part2
ى الْكَافِرِينَ يُجَاهِدُونَ فِي سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ وَلَا يَخَافُونَ لَوْمَةَ لَائِمٍ ۚ ذَٰلِكَ فَضْلُ اللَّهِ يُؤْتِيهِ مَن يَشَاءُ ۚ وَاللَّهُ وَاسِعٌ عَلِيمٌ
O you who believe! Whoever of you turns away from his Religion, (know that) in time God will raise up a people whom He loves, and who love Him, most humble towards the believers, dignified and commanding in the face of the unbelievers, striving (continuously and in solidarity) in God’s cause, and fearing not the censure of any who censure. That is God’s grace and bounty, which He grants to whom He wills. God is All-Embracing (with His profound grace), All-Knowing. (Al-Māedah 5:54)
Secondly, these people are so “humble and modest towards the believers” that each of them is a hero of humbleness and modesty. Based on the idea of Said Nursi, “The victory over the uncivilized ones is through compulsion, while it is through persuasion over the civilized,” we may approach this point from a different perspective as follows:
The vast majority of the enemy front in the face of the Companions consisted of the uncivilized people from among the Bedouins living the desert; therefore, victory over them required compulsion and dissuasion or the use of force to a great extent. Furthermore, the communication and spread of Islam caused divisions in families, and tribalism, which the Qur’ān calls “Jāhilīyatu’l-‘Asabīyah” (the fierce zealotry coming from ignorance) (Al-Fath 48:26), was a major factor in uniting people.
Thus acting sternly and unyieldingly towards the relentless unbelievers in such a period of time was of great significance. It may be because of these conditions that due to his firmness and sternness against the unbelievers, ‘Umar was established on the seat of the second rank among the Companions of the Prophet right after Abu Bakr, who had the first rank because of his nearness to and constant company of God’s Messenger, upon him be peace and blessings.
Today, the world is much more civilized, at least partially, than before; therefore, the victory over unbelief will be by persuasion, knowledge, and words, rather than using force.
On the other hand, since individualism is dominant and the uniting bonds among people are no longer strong, the collective sense and unity of action have gained great importance. Acting with humility and modesty towards the believers―a type of behavior and treatment much beyond compassion―and “being hand-less towards the one from among them who beats and tongue-less towards the one who swears” is much more appealing and important than approaching the unbelievers with a stern disposition.
Because of this, the verse under discussion mentions the attribute of “humility towards the believers” just after God’s love for them and their love for Him, and before being “dignified and commanding in the face of the unbelievers.”
As a matter of fact, the first condition of success in the service of the Qur’ān and belief after God’s good pleasure and love is the existence of an atmosphere of humbleness and modesty among us.
There can be no limit to the promotion of this point. This shows us why Bediüzzaman Said Nursi gave so much importance to sincerity and brotherhood in faith and why he seriously advises us to read the section from the Risale-i Nur collection on Islamic Brotherhood and Sisterhood frequently and especially the treatise on Sincerity at least once in a fortnight.
Probably, the hardest test to which we, believers, are subjected is our relations with our brothers and sisters in faith.