قَالَ الْمَلَأُ الَّذِينَ اسْتَكْبَرُوا مِن قَوْمِهِ لَنُخْرِجَنَّكَ يَا شُعَيْبُ وَالَّذِينَ آمَنُوا مَعَكَ مِن قَرْيَتِنَا أَوْ لَتَعُودُنَّ فِي مِلَّتِنَا ۚ قَالَ أَوَلَوْ كُنَّا كَارِهِينَ
88. “The chiefs of the arrogant among his people said: ‘We will surely expel you, O Shu‘ayb,
and those who believe with you from our town, unless you return into our creed.’ He (Shu‘ayb) said: ‘what, even though we dislike (it)?’”
All prophets have been threatened to be expelled and banished. This is the logic of force. Surah ’Ibrāhim, No. 14, verse 14 says:
The chiefs of the arrogant have always been the first enemies of prophets. The verse says:
“The chiefs of the arrogant among his people said…”
The method of prophets is logic and reasoning, but the style of disbelievers is force and threat.
The preachers of religion should not be afraid of the opponents’ threads, since there have always been threat and banishment in this way. The disbelievers told their prophet:
“…’We will surely expel you, O Shu‘ayb…”
Yet, be careful to use a kind word, politely and wisely, when you confront the ignorances of disbelievers. Shu‘ayb answered them:
“…He (Shu‘ayb) said: ‘what, even though we dislike (it)?’”
قَدِ افْتَرَيْنَا عَلَى اللّهِ كَذِباً إِنْ عُدْنَا فِي مِلَّتِكُمْ بَعْدَ إِذْ نَجَّانَا اللّهُ مِنْهَا وَمَا يَكُونُ لَنَآ أَنْ نَعُودَ فِيهَآ إِلآَّ أَنْ يَشَآءَ اللّهُ رَبُّنَا وَسِعَ رَبُّنا كُلَّ شَيْءٍ عِلْماً عَلَى اللّهِ تَوَكَّلْنَا رَبَّنَا افْتَحْ بَيْنَنَا وَبَيْنَ قَوْمِنَا بِالْحَقِّ وَأَنْتَ خَيْرُ الْفَاتِحِينَ
89. “We should have forged a lie against Allah if we returned into your creed after Allah delivered us from it. It is not for us to return into it, unless Allah, our Lord, (so) will. Our Lord comprehends all things in His knowledge. In Allah we have put our trust. Our Lord! Decide between us and our people with truth, and You are the best of deciders.”
The Qur’ānic term /millat/ has sometimes been used with the meaning of religion and creed.
Since the followers of Shu‘ayb had accepted their religion based upon reasoning and proof, (not upon desires), then they would not abandon it. Allah never commands upon returning to infidelity and paganism.
He who returns from His command, surely the amount of his deed is so little that the one regrets from his action, while Allah is not like that and He never reviews the religion. The verse says:
The Qur’ānic term /fath/ and /fātih/, in these aspects, mean: ‘judgement and arbitration’.
The final word is said by Allah, in order that they might be delivered from this blind, and the path be paved.
Therefore, opposite to the evil suggestions of the enemies, we must trust on Allah and show our conclusiveness.
Never a believer is ready to collude on his beliefs, and he never returns from the Truth. Turing back and retrogression is forbidden for a true Muslims. The verse says:
It is for this reason that we must submit the command of Allah and obey it.
Do not forget to observe discipline and courtesy in speech. Instead of curse, invoke Allah the just arbitration.
In supplication, the relationship between the demand and the Divine Names should be considered.
We are in need of triumph and, therefore, we call Him saying:
وَقَالَ الْمَلأُ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا مِنْ قَوْمِهِ لَئِنْ اتَّبَعْتُمْ شُعَيْباً إِنَّكُمْ إِذاً لَخَاسِرُونَ
فَاَخَذَتْهُمُ الرَّجْفَةُ فَاَصْبَحُوا فِي دَارِهِمْ جَاثِمِينَ
90. “And the chiefs of those who disbelied from among his people said: ‘If you follow Shu‘ayb, you will indeed be losers’.”
91. “Then the earthquake seized them, so they became motionless bodies in their dwellings.”
In this verse, the term /rajfah/ (earthquake) has been used for the punishment of those people, while in Surah Hūd, No. 11, verse 94 the word /sayhah/ (rumbling) has been applied, and in Surah Ash-Shu‘arā, No. 26, verse 189 the phrase “…the punishment of the day of cloud…”, which is a covering produced by an annihilating cloud, is mentioned as their torment.
This shows that the earthquake of their chastisement had been accompanied with rumbling and an annihilating dark cloud.
The Arabic term /jāθm/is derived from /jaθm/ which means: to sit upon the knee and to stay in one place. As if, the punishment seized them at night when they were asleep. They woke up, but they had neither enough time to save themselves nor any ability to escape. So, they were destroyed while they were in the state of half-raised.
Most of the opponents of divine prophets were from the kind of rich notables.
One of the methods of disbelievers is threat by means of economical siege.
When they became like that, they increased their own aberration by persisting on leading others astray. There was no hope that they might believe. Therefore, basing on the decree of the law of effacing the effects of corruption, the divine punishment fell upon them. The verse says:
الَّذِينَ كَذَّبُوا شُعَيْباً كَأَن لَمْ يَغْنَوْا فِيهَا الَّذِينَ كَذَّبُوا شُعَيْباً كَانُوا هُمُ الْخَاسِرِينَ
92. “Those who belied Shu‘ayb became (perished) as if they had never dwelt therein. Those who belied Shu‘ayb were themselves the losers.”
The Arabic term /yaqnau/, used in this verse, is derived from /ׁqinā / which means: ‘to dwell in a place’.
The great loss belongs to the idolaters. Instead of belief in one God, they ascribe partners, and instead of accepting the guidance of the immaculates, they refer to others supposing to be led.
Therefore, instead of a secured life, they will be destroyed of everything; and instead of being admitted into Heaven, they will enter Hell Fire, since, instead of Allah’s pleasure, they have incurred His Wrath.
Thus, the plots of the people of Shu‘ayb, who were the followers of falsehood, were of no avail. They wanted to expel Shu‘ayb from their town, but they themselves were destroyed in their own houses.
That is why that sometimes it happens that the places of refuge change to places of massacre. (The town of the people of Shu‘ayb, for example, was a pleasant place for them and also it was used as a means of threat against Shu‘ayb by them. But that town was ruined upon them and became a means of their destruction.
It is at the time of incurring the Wrath of Allah that the real losers are recognized. The above verse is its Qur’ānic evidence. It says:
فَتَوَلَّى عَنْهُمْ وَقَالَ يَا قَوْمِ لَقَدْ أَبْلَغْتُكُمْ رِسَالاَتِ رَبِّي وَنَصَحْتُ لَكُمْ فَكَيْفَ ءَاسَى عَلَى قَوْمٍ كَافِرِينَ
93. “So he turned away from them, and said: ‘O’ my people! I have delivered to you the messages of my Lord, and advised you sincerely; so how shall I then grieve for a disbelieving people?’”
Again, for a more intensive emphasis, it says that those who belied Shu‘ayb were the losers, not those who believed in him. Thus, such people are addressed in the holy verse as follows:
When Shu‘ayb saw them in the threshold of chastisement and destruction, he hopelessly turned away from them, and told them that he had conveyed the messages of Allah to them and had advised them, but refusing his words, they did not hearken to him.
That is, that punishment was very hard and painful, but they were deserve to incur it as a result of the crimes they had committed.
Then Suh‘ayb, in a positive interrogation with a negative sense, said why he should grieve for a people who disbelieved and incurred the punishment of Allah for themselves. This statement means that he said he did not grieve for them.
Thus Shu‘ayb consoles himself, because he had made his best and applied all the necessary efforts to guide aright those people. But, alas, they disobeyed arrogantly and that torment was their recompense.