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revelation of words showing that former prophets had been likewise tempted of the devil:—

We have not sent an apostle or prophet before thee, among whose desires Satan injected not some wrong desire, but God shall bring to nought that which Satan had suggested. Sura Al-Hajj (xxii) 51.1

When God had thus restored the confidence of Muhammad, it is said that He sent him the true revelation concerning the idols and that this is the text as we now have it in the Sura An-Najm (liii) :—

Do you see al-Lat and al-'Uzza
And Manat the third idol besides,
What! shall ye have male progeny and God female,
This were indeed an unfair partition,
These are mere names and your fathers named then such. 19-33.

The Quraish were very angry and said, 'Muhammad hath repented of his favourable mention of the rank held by our goddesses before the Lord. He hath changed the same and brought other

1 This is a Madina Sura and evidently refers back to the lapse at Mecca, and is a proof of its historical accuracy. Sale translates the words اذا تمنىا — by 'but when he read' not as Rodwell does 'among whose desires.' In the Tafsir-i-Husaini  they are translated جون تالوت كرد — 'when he read,' and are explained by a reference to this event at Mecca. A Persian translation by Shah Wali Ullah has آرزو بخاطر بست — 'kept desire in his heart'; Baidawi explains it thus 'What he desired was perverted'— زور فى نفسة ما يهواة
Nadhir Ahmad translates the phrase by
جب اسنى تمناكى —'When he desired.'
Ibn 'Abbis says it means
قراءة الرسول او حديث النبى — 'the reading of an apostle or the saying of a prophet.' There is good authority for this rendering. Ahmad Shah has جب اسنى كجه جاها — 'When he wished something.'
A Qadiani commentator denies that the verse has any reference to the lapse at Mecca on the ground that if such a lapse took place, it is improbable that some years would pass before its being referred to as due to the instigation of the Devil. Holy Qur'an. p, 674.

words in their stead,' so they stirred up the people to persecute the faithful with still more vigour. However weak Muhammad may have shown himself in this matter, he now and for ever broke with idolatry and began to declare the punishment due to idolaters. So in a Sura of this period we have:—

Worship ye what ye carve
When God hath created you and what ye make ?
Fain would they plot against him, but we brought them low. Sura As-Saffat (xxxvii) 93-4, 96.

Moses is called in as a witness of God's displeasure at idolatry and is represented as saying to the children of Israel :—

Now look at thy god to which thou hast continued so devoted. We will surely burn it and reduce it to ashes. Sura Ta­Ha (xx) 97.

Soon after his fall, Muhammad received a revelation warning him against ever approaching near to such a compromise again:—

And, verily, they had well-nigh beguiled thee from what we revealed to thee and caused thee to invent some other thing in our name; but in that case they would surely have taken them as a friend. 1 Sura Al-Isra' (xvii) 75.

1 Some authorities, however, hold that this refers to a temptation placed before the Prophet by the people of Ta'if when, in answer to his appeal to them, they required certain concessions, such as freedom from the legal alms and the stated times of prayer and permission to retain for a time their idol al-Lat ; or it may refer to the time when Ta'if was besieged and if so the verses would belong to the eighth or ninth year of the Hijra and so be part of a Madina Sura. (See Sale's Preliminary Discourse, Wherry's ed, p. 39). Zamakhshari is quoted as favouring this view Rodwell p. 198), and Plamer says that this is the view of most commentators. Waqidi's account of the negotiations agrees with this opinion. Another view stated in the Tafsir-i-Husaini is that it refers to the time 'when the Quraish came and said, "We will not allow thee to kiss the black stone until thou touchest our idols. If only with the tip of the finger."  [footnote continued on next page]

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