QURAN SUMMARY: AL FATH

Surah Fath Background And Summary of Main Topics.

Surah Fath Statistics: Total Number of Verses, Revelation Period, Main Characters, Theme And Key Verses.

NAME: الفتح, Al-Fath.

Name taken from Verse 1 where there is a mention of the word “Fath”. Name applied to whole Surah as in it is a tiding of a great victory Allah granted to Prophet and believers.

١  إِنَّا فَتَحْنَا لَكَ فَتْحًا مُبِينًا
1  Indeed, We have given you, [O Muhammad], a clear conquest

ENGLISH NAME: Victory.

CHAPTER NUMBER: 48

SURAH FATH TOTAL VERSES: 29

SURAH FATH TOTAL WORDS: 560

TOTAL UNIQUE WORDS WITHOUT REPETITION: 362

TOTAL LETTERS: 2,510

REVELATION PERIOD:

Medinan, Approx. 628 – 629 AD. 

MAIN CHARACTERS:

God, Prophet Muhammad, Believers, Hypocrites,  Believers In Old Scriptures.

SURAH FATH MAIN TOPICS:

God Has Given Muhammad A Manifest Victory, Allegiance On Prophet’s Hand Is Like On God’s Hand, Excuses Of Companions for Not Going For Battles, Promise Of Future Booty/Spoils, Dream Of Prophet Of Doing Hajj In Mecca Is Truth.

SURAH FATH KEY VERSES:

١٦  قُلْ لِلْمُخَلَّفِينَ مِنَ الْأَعْرَابِ سَتُدْعَوْنَ إِلَىٰ قَوْمٍ أُولِي بَأْسٍ شَدِيدٍ تُقَاتِلُونَهُمْ أَوْ يُسْلِمُونَ ۖ فَإِنْ تُطِيعُوا يُؤْتِكُمُ اللَّهُ أَجْرًا حَسَنًا ۖ وَإِنْ تَتَوَلَّوْا كَمَا تَوَلَّيْتُمْ مِنْ قَبْلُ يُعَذِّبْكُمْ عَذَابًا أَلِيمًا

16  Say to those who remained behind of the bedouins, “You will be called to [face] a people of great military might; you may fight them, or they will submit. So if you obey, Allah will give you a good reward; but if you turn away as you turned away before, He will punish you with a painful punishment.”

١٨  لَقَدْ رَضِيَ اللَّهُ عَنِ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ إِذْ يُبَايِعُونَكَ تَحْتَ الشَّجَرَةِ فَعَلِمَ مَا فِي قُلُوبِهِمْ فَأَنْزَلَ السَّكِينَةَ عَلَيْهِمْ وَأَثَابَهُمْ فَتْحًا قَرِيبًا

18  Certainly was Allah pleased with the believers when they pledged allegiance to you, [O Muhammad], under the tree, and He knew what was in their hearts, so He sent down tranquillity upon them and rewarded them with an imminent conquest

٢٥  هُمُ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا وَصَدُّوكُمْ عَنِ الْمَسْجِدِ الْحَرَامِ وَالْهَدْيَ مَعْكُوفًا أَنْ يَبْلُغَ مَحِلَّهُ ۚ وَلَوْلَا رِجَالٌ مُؤْمِنُونَ وَنِسَاءٌ مُؤْمِنَاتٌ لَمْ تَعْلَمُوهُمْ أَنْ تَطَئُوهُمْ فَتُصِيبَكُمْ مِنْهُمْ مَعَرَّةٌ بِغَيْرِ عِلْمٍ ۖ لِيُدْخِلَ اللَّهُ فِي رَحْمَتِهِ مَنْ يَشَاءُ ۚ لَوْ تَزَيَّلُوا لَعَذَّبْنَا الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا مِنْهُمْ عَذَابًا أَلِيمًا

25  They are the ones who disbelieved and obstructed you from al-Masjid al-Haram while the offering was prevented from reaching its place of sacrifice. And if not for believing men and believing women whom you did not know – that you might trample them and there would befall you because of them dishonor without [your] knowledge – [you would have been permitted to enter Makkah]. [This was so] that Allah might admit to His mercy whom He willed. If they had been apart [from them], We would have punished those who disbelieved among them with painful punishment

٢٧  لَقَدْ صَدَقَ اللَّهُ رَسُولَهُ الرُّؤْيَا بِالْحَقِّ ۖ لَتَدْخُلُنَّ الْمَسْجِدَ الْحَرَامَ إِنْ شَاءَ اللَّهُ آمِنِينَ مُحَلِّقِينَ رُءُوسَكُمْ وَمُقَصِّرِينَ لَا تَخَافُونَ ۖ فَعَلِمَ مَا لَمْ تَعْلَمُوا فَجَعَلَ مِنْ دُونِ ذَٰلِكَ فَتْحًا قَرِيبًا

27  Certainly has Allah showed to His Messenger the vision in truth. You will surely enter al-Masjid al-Haram, if Allah wills, in safety, with your heads shaved and [hair] shortened, not fearing [anyone]. He knew what you did not know and has arranged before that a conquest near [at hand].

٢٩  مُحَمَّدٌ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ ۚ وَالَّذِينَ مَعَهُ أَشِدَّاءُ عَلَى الْكُفَّارِ رُحَمَاءُ بَيْنَهُمْ ۖ تَرَاهُمْ رُكَّعًا سُجَّدًا يَبْتَغُونَ فَضْلًا مِنَ اللَّهِ وَرِضْوَانًا ۖ سِيمَاهُمْ فِي وُجُوهِهِمْ مِنْ أَثَرِ السُّجُودِ ۚ ذَٰلِكَ مَثَلُهُمْ فِي التَّوْرَاةِ ۚ وَمَثَلُهُمْ فِي الْإِنْجِيلِ كَزَرْعٍ أَخْرَجَ شَطْأَهُ فَآزَرَهُ فَاسْتَغْلَظَ فَاسْتَوَىٰ عَلَىٰ سُوقِهِ يُعْجِبُ الزُّرَّاعَ لِيَغِيظَ بِهِمُ الْكُفَّارَ ۗ وَعَدَ اللَّهُ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ مِنْهُمْ مَغْفِرَةً وَأَجْرًا عَظِيمًا

29  Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah; and those with him are forceful against the disbelievers, merciful among themselves. You see them bowing and prostrating [in prayer], seeking bounty from Allah and [His] pleasure. Their mark is on their faces from the trace of prostration. That is their description in the Torah. And their description in the Gospel is as a plant which produces its offshoots and strengthens them so they grow firm and stand upon their stalks, delighting the sowers – so that Allah may enrage by them the disbelievers. Allah has promised those who believe and do righteous deeds among them forgiveness and a great reward.

SUMMARY OF TOPICS

48: 1-4(O Muhammad God Has Given You A Manifest Victory, And Sent Peace Into The Hearts Of Believers), 5-7(Destination Of Heaven And Hell For Believers And Hypocrites Respectively), 8(Muhammad Sent As Shahid, Mubashir, Nazir), 10(Allegiance On Prophet’s Hand Is Like On God’s Hand), 11-12(Excuses Of Not Going For Battles, They Think Believers Will Not Return Back), 15-17( They Want To Go With You When Chances Of Getting Spoils Booty With Ease, No Blame On Sick, Lame, Blind If Don’t Go For Fight), 18(Allegiance Of Prophet Beneath The Tree), 21-21(Promise Of Future Booty/Spoils), 22&25(Allah Can Defeat The Disbelievers Now But He Has A Different Plan, Also Because Some Believers Are Still There In Mecca Between Enemies), 27(Dream Of Prophet Of Doing Hajj In Mecca Is Truth), 29( Characteristics Of Believers In Old Scriptures)

SURAH FATH BRIEF COMMENTARY & BACK GROUND:

This Surah has 29 verses divided into 4 Rukus/Sections. This is a Madni Surah revealed around 6 AH at the beginning of 628 AD after the Treaty of Hudaibiyah took place. Name taken from verse 1: إِنَّا فَتَحْنَا لَكَ فَتْحًا مُبِينًا and this name is not only its name but also the title and topic of the Surah as it deals with the clear victory that God granted Prophet Muhammad. There are traditions narrated from Umar Bin Khattab that this Surah revealed when we were returning back from Hudaibiyah.

The Prophet had a dream that he was in Mecca and performed the Umrah. Prophet considered it a sort of Divine inspiration as was also confirmed later by verse 27 of this Surah “ لَقَدْ صَدَقَ اللَّهُ رَسُولَهُ الرُّؤْيَا بِالْحَقِّ”. Prophet decided to go to Mecca although it looked impossible as there had been many battles between Meccans and Muslims since last 6 years and Meccans banned them from visiting Kaaba. However, Prophet with almost 1400 companions left Madina. These months of Zil Qadah and Zil Hajj were considered as sacred, and not only war is prohibited during these days, but also even an enemy could not attack or stop its enemy from doing the pilgrimage. Quraysh thus were in a confusion as if they Allow Muhammad than in all Arab they could lose their image as tribes around might think that they got afraid of Muhammad and if they stop them than it would be against the centuries-old custom of Arabia. But after all, they decided to stop the caravan of Muslims outside Mecca. Hearing the news of an army from Mecca prophet changed his route and reached Hudaibiyah on the boundary of the Sacred region of Mecca.

Quraysh sent Urwah bin Masud to negotiate with Prophet but Prophet gave the simple answer that they had the intention of performing the religious duty of pilgrimage and nothing else. When Urwah came back, he told Quraysh that he had seen such a reverence of Muhammad’s followers towards him that he never saw in the courts of kings of Persia and Abbasiniya. His followers even not let the water of his ablution fall on the ground but take it in their hands and rub on their faces and bodies. It would be best if you think twice before dealing with Muhammad now.

Quraysh tried to provoke Muslims by sudden attacks so that they can blame them of fighting, but all their plans failed. Then Prophet sent Usman bin Affan as his messenger to Mecca to convey directly to the chiefs of Mecca about their intention and that they have come with the sacrificial animals only for the sake of visiting Kaaba. Quraysh withheld Usman and rumor spread that Usman had been killed. Now killing a messenger was a great crime and there was such a wave of anger in Muslims that Prophet decided to enter Mecca and before that took an oath of death from all companions that they would fight till their death. This oath is known as the pledge of Ridwan. Muslims were just 1400 in number, outside their home city and almost without weapons but even then all companions gave their oath. Later Usman’s death rumors proved false, and he came back along with Suhail Bin Amr from Mecca to negotiate with Muslims. After long talks, the following contract negotiated

1- There would be no war between the two parties for the coming ten years

2- All Arabs would have the choice of going with either of the two parties

3- During these 10 years if anyone from Meccan’s side accept Islam without consent of his elders and try to go to Madina, Muslims would return that person but if someone came from Madina than he would not be returned

4- Muslims would go back this year and next year they would come for Umrah only with a sword in sheaths and no other weapon and can stay for three days.

Muslims were not happy on all this and thought it as humiliating so much so that Umar bin Khattab started doubting and asked Abu Bakr Is Muhammad not God’s Messenger, and are they not polytheists? Then, why should we agree to what is humiliating to our Faith? Muslims, in general, were disturbed especially on the condition of returning Muslim fellow to Meccan’s and the other one of returning back without Umrah as they were also thinking that Prophet had a dream from God and in that case, it would become wrong if they return back without performing. Prophet told them that in his dream, he only saw that he was performing Tawaf of Kaaba and had not been shown the time or year of this event.

The Prophet asked the companions to slaughter their animals, shave their heads, and put off the Ahrams. But no one moved. Prophet felt much grieved as up till this time it never happened that he said something and should not be done immediately by the companions. Seeing his grief Prophet’s wife, Umm Salmah told him that he should go and slaughter his own animal and ask the barber to shave his head, seeing this people would have no way to do the same and they been confirmed that your decision would not be changed. The same thing happened. On the way back to Madina all were depressed and lowly until when they reached Dajnan or Kura al Ghamin, this Surah came down. This Surah clearly told them that this treaty was not a defeat but a great victory and soon after that everyone realized in coming days when its benefits began to appear. First of which was that they got a relief from war, and now they could entirely focus on the propagation of Islam. Before that Prophet and his followers were considered as rebels but this treaty itself showing that Meccans accepted them as a separate state and not only this the condition of allowing Muslims to visit Kaaba shows that they were also accepted as an admitted religion of Arabia. They also got time to establish themselves in the area and to crush the other opponents in the area and just three months after Hudaibiyah, Khaiber, the principal fort of the Jews, was conquered and after it the Jewish regions of Fadak, Wad-il Qura, Taima and Tabuk also came to Muslims one after the other. Thus, within two years after Hudaibiyah, the balance of power in Arab was so changed that the power of the Quraysh and pagans gave way, and the domination of Islam became evident.