*1 This verse makes plain the meaning of the previous one. The object of the Revelation of the Qur'an is riot to make the Holy Prophet do something impossible and to put him to unnecessary distress by demanding from him to imbue the hearts of the obdurate people with Faith, but to admonish those people who have fear of Allah. Therefore the Holy Prophet should not waste his efforts on those people who have no fear of God left in them, and who do not bother at all about what is Truth and what is falsehood.(20:4) a revelation from Him Who created the earth and the high heavens.
*2 That is, "After creating the universe, He is ruling over it and conducting all the affairs of its management."(20:6) To Him belongs all that is in the heavens and all that is in the earth, and all that is in between, and all that is beneath the soil.
*3 That 'is, "You need not complain to Allah in a loud voice against the persecution from which you and your companions are suffering and the mischievous machinations your enemies are devising to defeat you for Allah is fully aware of all those things, and He hears even the complaints you cherish in your hearts."(20:8) Allah - there is no god but He. His are the most excellent names.4
*4 That is, "He possesses all the excellent attributes and characteristics."(20:9) Has the story of Moses reached you?
*5 This happened when Prophet Moses was returning to Egypt after passing several years in exile in Midian, along with his wife whom he had married there. According to the early part of his history, which has been related in Surah XXVIII (A!-Qasas), an Egyptian had been killed by Prophet Moses; so he had to leave Egypt in order to escape arrest and had taken refuge in Midian.
*6 It appears that this happened during a night of winter, when Prophet Moses was passing through the southern part of the Sinai Peninsula. When he saw a fire at a distance, he went towards it in the hope that he might get some of it to keep his wife and children warm during the night, or at least get some guidance concerning the direction of his journey. But instead of this it was his good fortune that he found the guidance to the Right Way.(20:11) When he came to it, a voice called out: "Moses!
Probably, it is because of this that the Jews do not say their prayers with their shoes on. The Holy Prophet, however, removed this misunderstanding, saying, "Act in contrast to the practice of the Jews who do not say their prayers with their shoes or leather socks on." (Abu Da'ud). It does not, however, mean that one must say one's prayers with the shoes on, but it is merely to make it lawful to say prayers with shoes on. This is confirmed by another tradition, related by Abu Da'ud from `Amar bin `As, that he had seen the Holy Prophet saying his prayer both with and without the shoes.
There are other traditions also to this effect but it should also be kept in mind that there were no carpets, mats, etc. in the mosques in those days, not even in the Holy Prophet's Mosque. Therefore it would be improper to go with shoes on into the mosques of today which have carpets, mats, etc. However, one may say one's prayer on grassy plots or open ground with shoes on.
*8 In general, the commentators are of the opinion that Tuwa was the name of the valley, but according to some it means, "The valley that had been made sacred for the time being. "(20:13) I Myself have chosen you; therefore, give ear to what is revealed.
This is the real object of Salat. It has been prescribed to remind people that they should not become neglectful of Allah by worldly diversions and that they should remember that man is not an unbridled free being but a servant of Allah. Salat has been prescribed five times a day to remind man of Allah's presence.
Some people are of the opinion that it means: "Establish Salat, so that I may remember you."
Incidentally, according to this verse, if one forgets to offer a prayer in time, one should offer it when one recollects it. This is also supported by a tradition related by Hadrat Anas: "If one forgets to offer a certain prayer at the proper time, he should offer it whenever he recollects this; for there is no other expiation for this omission." (Bukhari, Muslim, Ahmed). There is another tradition related by Abu Hurairah to the same effect. It was inquired from the Holy Prophet: "What should we do if we remained asleep during the time of prayer?" The Holy Prophet said, "There is no sin if one remained asleep. The sin is that one should neglect one's prayer intentionally while awake. Therefore if one forgets to offer a prayer or remained asleep one should offer that prayer on remembering it or on awaking." (Tirmizi, Nasa'i, Abu Da'ud).
*10 After Tauhid the second thing that was revealed to alI the Prophets was the reality of the "Hereafter", and they were appointed to impart its knowledge to their peoples. Here its object Gas also been stated. The Hour of Resurrection is destined to come so that every one should get the recompense in the Hereafter of what one did in this world, and that Hour has been kept secret to fulfil the requirement of the trial. For the one who believes in the Hereafter will always be on his guard against any deviation from the Right Way, and the one who does not believe in the coming of that Hour will remain engaged in other things, for he will think that he did not see any sign of the coming of the Hour.(20:16) Let him who does not believe in it and follows his lust not turn your thought away from it, lest you are ruined.
*11 This question was not asked for the sake of getting any information, for Allah knew that Moses held a staff in his hand. The question was posed with a view to impressing upon him the fact that it was a staff so that he might be mentally prepared to see the miracle which was going to be performed with it.(20:18) Moses answered: "This is my staff. I lean on it (when I walk), and with it I beat down leaves for my flock, and I have many other uses for it."12
*12 Prophet Moses deliberately prolonged his answer and did not stop at: "It is my staff". This was because he naturally wanted to prolong the dialogue to make the privilege meeting last longer.(20:19) He said: "Moses, throw it down."
*13 That is, "Your hand will shine brightly like the sun, but it will not cause any hurt to you. " It is strange that the Bible interprets this miracle, saying that 'his hand was leprous as snow but it was turned again as his other flesh'. The Talmud also interprets the miracle in the same way and adds that this was a miracle which was meant for Pharaoh who was suffering from leprosy. It is a pity that the same interpretation has been adopted by our own commentators, though the correct interpretation is the one that has been adopted by us, and many former commentators. Obviously, it is bad taste to attribute to a Prophet the repugnant miracle of leprosy and that, too, before a king in his court.(20:23) for We shall show you some of Our greatest Signs.