Righteous Jews & Christians & Advocating Righteousness and Forbidding Evil (3:113 – 3:117)

Righteous Jews & Christians

[3:113] They are not all the same; among the followers of the scripture, there are those who are righteous. They recite GOD’s revelations through the night, and they fall prostrate.
[3:114] They believe in GOD and the Last Day, they advocate righteousness and forbid evil, and they hasten to do righteous works. These are the righteous.
[3:115] Any good they do will not go unrewarded. GOD is fully aware of the righteous.
[3:116] Those who disbelieved can never be helped by their money or their children against GOD. They have incurred Hell, wherein they abide forever.
[3:117] The example of their accomplishments in this life is like a violent wind that hits the harvest of people who have wronged their souls, and wipes it out. GOD never wronged them; it is they who wronged themselves.

How do we advocate righteous and forbid evil?
We do this by leading a good example, making our stance be known, and reminding others. We can exhort and enjoin, but we can’t force people to be righteous.

What does enjoin mean?
Enjoin: give instructions to or direct somebody to do something with authority

No Compulsion in Religion

[2:256] There shall be no compulsion in religion: the right way is now distinct from the wrong way. Anyone who denounces the devil and believes in GOD has grasped the strongest bond; one that never breaks. GOD is Hearer, Omniscient.

[2:44] Do you exhort the people to be righteous, while forgetting yourselves, though you read the scripture? Do you not understand?

[7:145] We wrote for him on the tablets all kinds of enlightenments and details of everything: “You shall uphold these teachings strongly, and exhort your people to uphold them – these are the best teachings. I will point out for you the fate of the wicked.” 

[8:1] They consult you about the spoils of war. Say, “The spoils of war belong to GOD and the messenger.” You shall observe GOD, exhort one another to be righteous, and obey GOD and His messenger, if you are believers. 

[90:17] And being one of those who believe, and exhorting one another to be steadfast, and exhorting one another to be kind.

[103:3] Except those who believe and lead a righteous life, and exhort one another to uphold the truth, and exhort one another to be steadfast. 

[5:63] If only the rabbis and the priests enjoin them from their sinful utterances and illicit earnings! Miserable indeed is what they commit. 

[5:79] They did not enjoin one another from committing evil. Miserable indeed is what they did.

Interesting that enjoin and exhort can be used for righteousness or evil.

[15:70] They said, “Did we not enjoin you from contacting anyone?”

[4:37] The ones who are stingy, exhort the people to be stingy, and conceal what GOD has bestowed upon them from His bounties. We have prepared for the disbelievers a shameful retribution.

God also tells us not to cooperate in matters that are sinful:

[5:2] O you who believe, do not violate the rites instituted by GOD, nor the Sacred Months, nor the animals to be offered, nor the garlands marking them, nor the people who head for the Sacred Shrine (Ka`bah) seeking blessings from their Lord and approval. Once you complete the pilgrimage, you may hunt.* Do not be provoked into aggression by your hatred of people who once prevented you from going to the Sacred Masjid. You shall cooperate in matters of righteousness and piety; do not cooperate in matters that are sinful and evil. You shall observe GOD. GOD is strict in enforcing retribution.

Anyone who commits a sin receives a portion

[4:85] Whoever mediates a good deed receives a share of the credit thereof, and whoever mediates an evil work, incurs a share thereof. GOD controls all things.

God uses the best psychology to promote righteousness. An example of this is with God’s prohibition of alcohol. In one verse God says to not do your Contact Prayer when you are intoxicated, but ultimately intoxicants are prohibited. This allows the person who may have a dependence on alcohol a way to stop their drinking habit in stages.

What Nullifies Ablution

[4:43] O you who believe, do not observe the Contact Prayers (Salat) while intoxicated, so that you know what you are saying. Nor after sexual orgasm without bathing, unless you are on the road, traveling; if you are ill or traveling, or you had urinary or fecal-related excretion (such as gas), or contacted the women (sexually), and you cannot find water, you shall observe Tayammum (dry ablution) by touching clean dry soil, then wiping your faces and hands therewith. GOD is Pardoner, Forgiver.

Intoxicants and Gambling Prohibited

[5:90] O you who believe, intoxicants, and gambling, and the altars of idols, and the games of chance are abominations of the devil; you shall avoid them, that you may succeed.
[5:91] The devil wants to provoke animosity and hatred among you through intoxicants and gambling, and to distract you from remembering GOD, and from observing the Contact Prayers (Salat). Will you then refrain?

Believers Set the Example

[49:11] O you who believe, no people shall ridicule other people, for they may be better than they. Nor shall any women ridicule other women, for they may be better than they. Nor shall you mock one another, or make fun of your names. Evil indeed is the reversion to wickedness after attaining faith. Anyone who does not repent after this, these are the transgressors.

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