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From the History of the Holy Qur’an

The revelation of the Holy Qur’an

The scientists disagreed on the time the Holy Qur’an according to the saying:

The first: which is correct: (Read in the name of your Lord…} the Verse, to {What he did not know} which was narrated by Al Bukhari and Muslim about the mother of believers A’esha.

The second: { O thou wrapped up (in a mantle)} which was mentioned in Al Mudather Chapter before the Chapter of Eqr’a, and some scientists called on conciliating between the first and second opinions by saying: the first (Read in the name of your Lord) and the message {{ O thou wrapped up (in a mantle)}

The third: Al Fatiha

The fourth: In the Name of Allah

And the two Shaikhs narrated about the mother of believers A’esha: that heaven and hell were mentioned first, and if people followed Islam, then what is prohibited and permissible will descend.

And Ali Bin Hassan said: the first chapter to descend in Mecca {Read in the name of your Lord} and the last was of the believers, and it was said Al Ankaboot. The first chapter was descended in the explanation of Al Bukhari to Hajir: they agreed that Al Baqarah Chapter was descended in Al Madina.

And in the explanation of Al Nasfi about Al Wafdi that the first Chapter to descend in Al Madina was Al Qader Chapter.


The last parts of the Holy Qur’an that descended:

And it is also not agreed upon, the two Sheikhs narrated about Al Bar’a Bin Azib: The last Verse to descend was: {They ask thee for a legal decision} the Verse and the last chapter was Al Bara’a.

And Eben abbas said: the last Verse to descend was the Verse of usury {O ye who believe! fear Allah and give up what remains of your demand for usury, if ye are indeed believers. (278) If ye do it not, take notice of war from Allah and His Messenger: but if ye repent ye shall have your capital sums; deal not unjustly and ye shall not be dealt with unjustly. (279) if the debtor is in a difficulty grant him time till it is easy for him to repay. But if ye remit if by way of charity, that is best for you if ye only knew} Al Baqarah: 278 – 280

And Eben Abbassaid: the last to descend from the Qur’an {Beware of the day in which you return} Al Baqara: 281.

And there is no denial of these two narrations in the Verse of usury (Beware of the day} and the Verse of religion, because it is apparent that it descended at one time and as one story which is true.

And about Abi Ben Ka’eb who said: The last Verse to descend (A Prophet came to you from yourselves) (derived from Al Hakem and Al Tarmathy).

And Abu Baker said in his book “The Victory” these saying have nothing to do with the Prophet (PBUH), and it is possible that each of them told what he had heard from the Prophet (PBUH) on the day he passed away or before his illness, and others heard what others hadn’t heard.

And from the problem regarding what Allah Al Mighty said {Today I completed your religion) (Al Nisa’: 176), as it descended in Arafa’ in the year of the farewell pilgrimage, and its appearance is to complete all the duties and regulations before it, and a group declared: No Halal or anything forbidden descended after it despite that there was a mention of usury and debts, and the weakness is that it descended after that and Ibn Jareer was doubtful regarding it and said: The first says that He completed their religion by acknowledging the forbidden country, and the evacuation of the infidels from it, even though the pilgrimage of Muslims is not mixed with infidels.

And there is also disagreement, Sheikhs narrated that Al Bara’ said: the last verse that descended (they consult you say that Allah to gives an advisory opinion about weaknesses}, and the last Chapter to descend is Al Bara’a.

And Ebn Abbas said: the last verse to descend was about usury and in what Allah Al Mighty said: {Oh believers fear Allah and leave what is left of usury} (Al Baqarah: 278-278).

And Eben Abbas said: the last verse to descend from the Qur’an: {Fear Allah in the day you will return} (Al Baqarah: 281)

And there is no deny of these two versions in the verse of usury (and fear Allah one day) and the verse of religion, because it is apparent that it descended at one time as the arrangement in the Qur’an, because it is one story, so everyone told others what descended from the other, which is Saheeh.

About Abi Bin K’aeb who said: the last to verse to descend was: {A Prophet came to you from yourselves} (Al Tawba: 128-129) to the end of the Chapter.

And about A’esha: the last chapter to descend was Al Maeda: {what you find of it to be Halal then consider it Halal} (published by Al Hakem and Al Tarmathy)

And Al Qadi Abu Baker said in his book Victory: these sayings don’t include anything related to the Prophet (PBUH) on the day he passed away, or before his illness, and others heard this even if he did not.

Collecting of the Qur’an in the era of Abi Baker Al Sedeeq

The Qur’an was collected in the era of Abi Baker Al Sedeeq (MAPH) due to the death of the Prophet (PBUH) and some Arab tribes became infidels so Abu Baker was sent as a successor to the Prophet (PBUH) the armies to fight the infidels. These armies included the Companions of the Prophets (MAPT) and those who memorize the Qur’an, so he wanted to collect the Qur’an in one Book with the presence of one of the Companions, and this story was narrated by Al Bukhari about Zaid Bin Thabet (MAPH) who said: send to Abu Baker – the killing of the people of Al Yamama – and Omar Eben Al Khattab was there with him and said: Omar came to me and said the killing increased on the day of Yamama with the readers of the Holy Qur’an, and I am afraid that killing will increase with the readers in the nations, so a lot of the Qur’an goes away, and I see that you should order the gathering of the village people, I said to Omar: how do you do something not done by the Prophet (PBUH), Omar said: This is well, and Omar kept explaining to me until I was convinced and I saw what Omar saw, Zaid said that Abu Baker said: you are a sane man and we do accuse you, and you were writing the inspiration for the Prophet (PBUH) and followed the Qur’an, so gather it and by Allah if they put me in charge of moving the mountains I would move them and wouldn’t be harder than what was asked of me to gather the Qur’an, I said: how would you do something not done by the Prophet (PBUH): He said: It is well, and Abu Baker did not stop until I was convinced of who convinced Abi Baker and Omar (MAPT), so I proceeded to gather the Qur’an from all sources and the men, until I found the end of Al Tawba Chapter with abi Khazeema Al Ansari and did not find it with anyone else {A Prophet came to you from yourselves who cares about what you have sinned} until the end of Bara’a, as the Books were Abi Baker until he died then with Omar while he was alive, then with Hafsa Bint Omar (MAPT). The history of collecting it: as it came in the Hadith after the Yamama battle, and in the second year of the Al Hijra, the reasons why Zaid Bin Thabet (MAPT) was chosen for this collection: 1: that he was a memorizer of the Holy Qur’an 2. That he witness that last presentation of the Holy Qur’an, and Al Baghwi narrated that Abi Abdel Rahman Al Salmani said: Zaid Bin Thabet read Qur’an upon the Prophet (PBUH) twice during the year that he died in, until He said about Zaid Bin Thabet that he saw the last presentation and was reading it to the people until he died, and this is why Abu Baker and Omar relied on him in his collection, and Othman appointed him to write the Books (MAPT). 3. That it is the book of inspiration for the Prophet (PBUH). 4.   The Productivity of his mind, his vast devoutness, as he was created, and the righteousness of his relgion, and his great honesty, and proof of that was what Abi Baker (MAPH) said about him (You are a young, sane man, we do not accuse you while you were writing the inspiration for the Prophet (PBUH), and the same saying of Abi Baker (MAPH): and by Allah if they put me in charge of moving the mountains I would move them and wouldn’t be harder than what was asked of me to gather the Qur’an. The method of Zaid in the collecting: it is known that Zaid Bin Thabet (MAPH) was a memorizer of the whole Holy Qur’an and had written all of it and despite that, he did not rely on what he had memorized or what he had wrote, this is because his work is not only limited to gathering the Qur’an, rather to fixating and determining what was written, and so Al Zarkashy (PBUH) said about Zaid: (and his search of the men was not for memorization but for creating knowledge). And Eben Hajar (PBUH) said: (the benefit of following it exaggerating in memorization and standing at what was written between the hands of the Prophet (PBUH). And Abu Baker drew a methodology for Zaid for this collection and he said to him and to Omar Ben Al Khattab (PBUH) (Sit at the door of the Mosque, and whoever comes with two witnesses to what was in Allah’s book then write it), and they represented this as Omar spoke to the people: (Whoever received a part of the Holy Qur’an from the Prophet (PBUH) then bring it to us) and Zaid himself showed the methodology he followed by saying: (I searched for the Qur’an in: Books, and from men) (narrated by Al Bukhari) , and by this the methodology of Zaid in the gathering of the Holy Qur’an in the era of Abi Baker Al Sedeeq (MAPH) was based on the following four principles: the first: What was written by the hands of the Prophet (PBUH). Second: What was memorized by the men? Third: No to accept anything written two witness that it was written by the Prophet (PBUH), Al Sakhawi said: (It means: Whoever comes with two witnesses that it was from the Book of Allah that was written by the Prophet (PBUH), And Eben Hajar Al Asqalani (PBUH) said: (And their purpose was not to write anything apart from what was written by the Prophet (PBUH) and not only what was from memory). Fourth: Not to accept what was from man’s memory unless it was narrated to them by the Prophet (PBUH), as Omar (MAPH) called out: (Whoever received something from the Prophet (PBUH) from the Qur’an, come forth with it). And he did not say what was memorized from the Qur’an come forth with it. The characteristics of gathering the Holy Qur’an in the era of Abi Baker Al Sedeeq (MAPH): 1. Gathering the Holy Qur’an in this era was the most precise amongst all the research, investigations and  skills which we indicated in the gathering methodology. 2. What was copied from the verses was neglected. 3. That this gathering was upon the 7 letters upon which the Holy Qur’an descended as in the Ruq’a which was written in the era of the Prophet (PBUH). 4. That this gathering was organized with the verses according to the agreement and disagreement of scientists; were they organized in this collection or were they organized during the era of Othman Ben Affan (MAPH)? 5. The scientists agreed that one copy of the Qur’an was written in this collection and was memorized by Abu Baker as he was considered to be Imam of the Muslims. 6. This collection was successful by the unanimity of the nation and the succession of what it includes. The rank of this collection: this collection was successful by the agreement of the Companions (MAPT) of the Prophet (PBUH) of its validity and precision and they agreed on it was free of additions or lack of things, and they accepted and cared for it as it deserves, until Ali Bin Abi Taleb (MAPH) said: (The most rewarded people for the Mus’haf is Abi Baker as he is the first to combine the two sides) (Hasan predication). Naming it the Mus’haf: The Mus’haf was not used to name the Qur’an before the gathering of Abi Baker al Sideeq (MAPH), rather it was known by this name after Zaid gathered the Qur’an. And Al Sayouti narrated that Eben Ashtah said in his book (Al Masahef): (Whereas they gathered the Qur’an and wrote it on paper, Abu Baker said: Give it a name. He said, some called it Al Safar, and others said: Al Mus’haf, as the people from Al Habshah called it the Musl’haf, and Abu Baker was the first to gather the Book of Allah and called it the Mus’haf). The news of the Mus’haf: After Zaid gathered the Qur’an in the Mus’haf, he gave it to Abi Baker Al Sedeeq (MAPH) and kept it with him until he died, then it was given to the Commander of the Faithful and after that to Omar Ben Al Khattab (MAPH), and after he died it was given to Hafsa the mother of the faithful (MAPH), because Omar (MAPH) made the succession after him as a counsel, so it stayed with Hafsa until it was requested by Othman (MAPH) to copy it and then returned it to her, and when she died (MAPH) Marwan Ben Al Hakam was sent to her brother Abdallah Ben Omar (MAPT) when they returned from the funeral of Hafsa to send it, and it was sent by the son of Omar to Marwan and he ripped it as he was worried that it might contain something that contradicts what Othman (MPAH) copied. 

·        Collecting the Qur’an (Copying it) in the era of Othman Bin Affan (MAPH)

The reason:

When the Islamic victories expanded the Companions (MAPT) deployed in the occupied countries teaching the people the Qur’an and religious matters, and every Companion new the letter he learned from the 7 letters, and the people of Al Sham read like Ubay Ben Kaeb (MAPH), so they brought forward what the people of Iraq had not heard, and the people of Iraq read like Abdallah Ben Masoud and they brought forward what the people of Al Sham had not heard until each of them considered the others as infidels.

And when the Muslim armies went to conquest (Armenia) and (Athrbejan), the soldiers were from Iraq and Al Sham, the conflicts fell between them and Huthaifa Bin Al Yaman (MAPT) saw their differences in reading and some read with rhythm while each of them read with their own preference and they way they were used to reading, and their belief that it was correct, and did not consider it as distortion or deviating until each considered the other to be infidels, and this panicked Huthaifa Ben Al Yaman (MAPH) and he said: By Allah I will ride to the Commander of the Faithful (who is Othman Ben Affan (MAPH)) and Othman saw such things in the Madina, as one teacher was teaching a kind of reading and the other teacher was teaching another kind, which made the boys meet and deny each others’ readings, so Othman (MAPH) made a speech and said: (You all disagree and chant, and those of you who become far from my city are more in disagreement and chant more, gather oh people of Mohammad and appoint an Imam for the people).

 So when Huthaifa went to Othman (MAPT) and told him what had happened, and Al Bukhari narrated in his Saheeh the story of the collection in the Hadith of ANas Bin Malik (MAPH) he said: (Huthaifa Ben Al Yaman approached Othman while he was with the people of Al Sham in the conquest of Armenia and Athrbehan with the people of Iraq and Huthaifa told of their differences in reading, so Huthaifa said to Othman: Oh Commander of the Faithful go to this nation before the disagree regarding the Book like the Jews and Christians, so Othman sent after Hafsa to send the Suhuf to copy them into the Masahef and return them to her, so she sent them to Othman).

The History of the Collection:

This occurred at the end of the year 24 and the beginnings of the year 25 as narrated by Eben Hajar Al Asqalawi (PBUH).

The Aim of the Collection:

When Othman (MAPH) heard what he had heard and Huthaifa (MAPH) told him what he had seen, he consulted with the Companions of the Prophet (PBUH) regarding what he should do, so the son of Abi Dawood narrated by the Saheeh – as Eben Hajar says – by the path of Suwaid Ben Ghafla who said, Ali Bin Abi Taleb (MAPH) said: (Oh people do not intrude upon Othman and do not say what is not good about the all those who did what they did with the Masahef, he said: what do you say about this reading? As I was informed that my reading is better than yours, and this is barely infidelity, we said: what do you see? He said: we see that we should gather the people to depend on one Mus’haf, so there are no differences. We said: Yes, we agree..Ali said: I would have done what he has done exactly).

The Chosen Committee:

Othman (MAPH) chose four to copy the Masahef, they are:

Zaid Ben Thabet (MAPH), Abdallah Ben Al Zabeer, Saeed Ben Al A’as, Abdel Rahman Ben Al Hareth Eben Hisham, an those three are from Quraish.

Othman (MAPH) asked: who are the best writers? They said: the writer of the Prophet (PBUH) Zaid Ben Thabet said: Which people are more Arabized? And in a more clear narration: they said: Saeed Ben Al A’as, Othman said, Saeed shall narrate and Zaid shall write.    

The Methodology regarding this collection:

After Othman agree with the Companions (MAPT) regarding gathering the Qur’an according to letters and a unique and correct path, the nation agreed upon its correctness and precision.

1.     Othman started to make speeches to the people, and he said: (Oh people your duty is towards your Prophet since 13 years and you suspect the Book of Allah and what came in it, and the man came with the paper and the surface in it the Qur’an until the people agreed upon it, then Othman came in and a man called to them, Did you hear the Prophet (PBUH) when he narrated it to you? He said: yes).

2.     Othman (MAPH) requested of Hafsa the daughter of Omar (MAPH) to send the Suhuf to copy them into the Masahef then they would return them to her, so she sent them, and it is known that these Suhuf are those that were gathered in the era of Abi Baker Al Sedeeq (MAPT) with the most precision, research and investigations.

3.     Then he sent them to Zaid Ben Thabet and the three from Quraish and ordered them to copy the Masahef a dn Othman said to the people of Quraish: (if you disagree with Zaid Ben Thabet about something in the Qur’an, write it with the tongue of Quraish, as it was descended in your tongue).

4.     If there was more than one reading in the verse, the verse is written with no punctuation which limits to only one pronunciation, and it is written in one way which bear all the readings such as:

A)   {To make it clear} which was also read {to depend}

B)   {To elevate} which is also read {To spread}

But if its writing does not allow more than one reading, it is written in some Masahef in a way that indicates its writing, and in other Masahef in a way that indicates another writing such as:

A)   {And Ibrahim recommended it) and this is how we write in some Masahef and in others we write they recommended.

B)   {Hurry to obtain the forgiveness of your Lord} with the (waw) before the letter (s) in some Masahef and in other it is omitted.

After finishing the copying of the Masahef, Othman sent the copies to the Muslim countries whereas the Muslims became active in copying the Masahef and giving them individuals and Zaid Ben Thabet was in the Madina and made himself free in Ramadan of every year to present Al Masahef and they present their Masahef to him while he carries the Madina Mus’haf.

The Characteristics of Gathering the Qur’an in the era of Othman Ben Affan (MAPH):

This collection had many characteristics some of which are:

1.     Limiting to one letter of the 7, Eben Al Qayem (PBUH) said: (Othman (MAPH) gathered the people on one letter of the 7 which was used in the reading by the Prophet (PBUH) with what it benefited.

2.     Neglecting what recitation was copied: Othman (MAPH) meant to gather the people on one Mus’haf which has no delays or advancements, and no interpretation came with the descending, and no copied recitation had a dependant writing, and its reading imposed and memorized, due to the concern of corruption and suspicion entering to those who come after.

3.     Limiting to what was depended in the last presentation and ignoring what came after: As the son of Abi Dawood narrated about the Masahef about Mohammad Ben Sereen about Katheer Ben Aflah that said: When Othman wanted to write the Masahef, 12 men gathered from Quraish and the Christians including Ubay Ben Kaeb, and Zaid Ben Thabet, and he said send those in the home of Omar so they came, he said while Othman was agreeing with them as if they disagreed with something they delayed it, Mohammad said: I told many including those who write: Do you know why they were delaying it? He said: No, Mohammad said: I thought they delayed it in order to look at what was more modernly written and write according to it.

4.     Limiting to fixed and known readings about the Prophet (PBUH) and deleting what was not fixated.

5.     The verses and chapters were organized according to the known arrangement today, the ruler in Al Mustadrak said: (the gathering of the Qur’an was not only one time, as some of it was gathered in the presence of the Prophet (PBUH) and others in the presence of Abi Baker Al Sedeeq, and the third with the organization of the Chapters during the succession of the Commander of the Faithful Othman Ben Affan (MAPT). 

·        The differences between the collection of Abi Baker and Othman (MAPT):

The meaning of gathering is clear in the gathering of the Holy Qur’an in the era of Abi Baker, as the Qur’an was disunited and it was ordered to gather it as Al Muhasabi said: (It was in the form of papers found in the house of the Prophet (PBUH) in which the Qur’an was disunited, and were gathered by a uniter, and was tied by a string so no papers get lost). So the meaning of gathering is obvious and does not need differentiation between it and between the gatherings in the era of the Prophet (PBUH), but the disagreements and ambiguities were regarding the second and third collections, as how does Othman order to gather the Qur’an and it was gathered in the era of Abi Baker (MAPT)? So the scientists are in charge of differentiating between the collection of the Qur’an in the era of Abi Baker and in the era of Othman to remove this ambiguity, and they mention the following differences:

Al Qadi Abu Baker said in the victory: (He didn’t mean Othman; he meant Abi Baker in the gathering of the Holy Qur’an, and he meant to gather them on the dependant readings known of the Prophet (PBUH) and cancelling anything other than that) and Eben Al Teen and others said: (the difference between the gathering of Abi Baker and the gathering of Othman is that the gathering of Abi Baker was out of concern that parts of the Qur’an would be omitted with the decease of his campaign because it wasn’t collected in one place, so he gathered them in the Sahaef organizing the verses of the Chapters as they were organized by the Prophet (PBUH) and the gathering of Othman was because of the many differences of readings, and they read them in their language and that lead them to mistake others, and he was afraid that things would get out of hand so he copied those Suhuf in one Mus’haf while organizing its chapters and limited all the languages to only the language of Qur’aish with the defense that it was descended in their language.

And from those two scripts we can derive that the main differences are:

1.     That the reason for gathering the Holy Qur’an in the era of Abi Baker was out of concern that parts of the Qur’an would be omitted with the fading away of its memorization when the readers were killed during the wars of tergiversation; however the collection of it in the era of Othman was because of the many readers.

2.     The collection of Abi Baker was according to 7 letters, but in the era of Othman it was according to only 1.

3.     In the collection of Abi Baker, it was organized by verses, as for Othman it was according to verses and chapters.

Carrying out the Masahef:

After the committee copied the Masafef, Othman copied them and sent with each Mas’haf who can read it, and Zaid Bin Thabet ordered that it be read according to Al Madani and Abdallah Ben Al Saeb was sent with Al Mecci, and Al Mughayara Ben Shehab with the Shami, and Aba Abdel Rahman Al Selmi with Al Koofi, and Amer Ben Abd Al Qais with Al Basri and the followers in all regions received an Imam and some of them allocated their time to fixate the readings until the Imams went to them.

·        The Mecci and Madani

The Holy Qur’an did not descend sentence by sentence – rather it descended as parts – verses and chapters over 23 years, some of which were descended before the Hijra in Mecca and others after Hijra in Madina Al Munawara,

The Holy Quran was not descended at once, but was descended in pieces-verses-in twenty three years, some before migration in Mecca and some after migration in Al Madina, some verses and Chapters were descended during the Prophet PBUH battles not in Mecca nor Al Madina like the verse Al Fateh, that descended between Mecca and Al Madina during Al Hudaybiyeh, some of the Quran was descended at night and some during the day. The difference between Madani and Mecci, is due to the differences between the two periods, they first needed to plant belief and show the  faith, and the second was to build the society for the Muslim state, which needed legislation and regulation. It can be easily noticed the shortness of the verses and the reason might be for the Muslims to memorise them easily as they lived in fear from the harm of infidels while the Civil verses were longer as the authority was among Muslims in Al Madina, and they were secure and free to move.

And the scientists defined the Mecci and Madani according to three methodologies:

First: Which is the majority of what is said, the Al Mecci descended before the Hijra, and the Madani afterwards, whether it was descended in Mecca or in the Madina, or during one of the journeys. It was narrated that Eben Abbas said: If the opening of the Chapter descended in Mecca then it was written in Mecca, then Allah adds what he wants, so it does not necessarily mean that the Chapter is Mecci if most of its verses descended in Al Madina, as in some Chapters that descended in Mecca, its verses descended in Al Madina and were attached to it, and the Mecci and Madani both have exceptions.

Second: That Al Mecci descended in Mecca even after Al Hijra, and the Madani descended in Al Madina, and those that descended during journeys or battles are not named Mecci or Madani, like what Allah said: {Oh people I created you of male and female..} (Al Hujjarat: 13), it was descended in Mecca on the day of conquest, and what Allah said: {Today I completed your religion} (Al Maeda).

Third: That Al Mecci was as a speech for the people of Mecca, and Al Madani was a speech for the people of Al Madina, like the Chapter of Al Mumtahena as it descended in Al Madina addressing the people of Mecca as in what Allah said: {And those who immigrated} (Al Nahel: 41), it was descended in Al Madina addressing the people of Mecca, and the first was descended for the infidels of Mecca, and what was descended in Mecca addressing the people of Al Madina what Allah said: {Allah orders you to fulfill your duties to its people} (Al Nisa’a: 85).

There are two ways to distinguish between Al Madani and Al Mecci: Hearing and measuring, as hearing is what was described to us when they were descended.

The measuring: Every Chapter that includes {Oh people} only or {no}, or if it had separated letters at the beginning expect for the Chapters of Al Baqarah and Al Umran and Al Raed, or if it has the story of Adam and Satan except for Al Baqarah Chapter, as it is Mecci.

And every Chapter that has: The stories of the Prophets and former nations: Mecci. Every Chapter that has a duty or limit is Madani, and every chapter which mentions the hypocrites except for the Chapter of Al Ankaboot is Madani.

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