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Sura 33
Aya 6
النَّبِيُّ أَولىٰ بِالمُؤمِنينَ مِن أَنفُسِهِم ۖ وَأَزواجُهُ أُمَّهاتُهُم ۗ وَأُولُو الأَرحامِ بَعضُهُم أَولىٰ بِبَعضٍ في كِتابِ اللَّهِ مِنَ المُؤمِنينَ وَالمُهاجِرينَ إِلّا أَن تَفعَلوا إِلىٰ أَولِيائِكُم مَعروفًا ۚ كانَ ذٰلِكَ فِي الكِتابِ مَسطورًا

Ali Unal

The Prophet has a higher claim on the believers than they have on their own selves, and (seeing that he is as a father to them) his wives are (as) their mothers.1 Those who are bound by blood have a greater right (in inheritance and charity) upon one another according to God’s Book than other believers and the Emigrants – except that you must (nevertheless) act with kindness toward your friends (and bequeath some of your goods to them).2 That is what is written in the Book (of God’s Decree).
  • The relationship described in the verse is of course a spiritual relationship with no legal implications, with the exception that the Prophet’s wives were eternally forbidden to other believers. As reported by al-Bukhārī (“Īmān,” 8) and Muslim (“Īmān,” 70), the Prophet, upon him be peace and blessings, said: “None of you is a true believer unless I am dearer to him than his father, and his children, and all humankind.” A believer must prefer the Prophet, upon him be peace and blessings, to their own person and to all other people in all matters, including love and protection; and they must put the decisions of the Prophet, upon him be peace and blessings, above their own.
  • Following the Hijrah, God’s Messenger, upon him be peace and blessings, had joined the believers in brotherhood, declaring one from among the Emigrants as a brother to one from among the Helpers (the Muslims of Madīnah), to the degree that they could even inherit from one another. This verse abolished this practice, but it reiterated the brotherhood in faith among the believers. However, it allowed believers to bequeath some proportion (to a maximum, as stipulated by the Prophet, upon him be peace and blessings, of one-third of the whole) of their wealth in lawful ways, including, of course, to help their brothers and sisters in faith.