Al-Tabari, History of Prophets and Kings (vol. 6), 1191-1193 (p. 107-110)
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The Attempt to Induce the Messenger of God to Cease His Attacks on Their Gods
It is said that the nobles of his tribe gathered together to speak to him one day. Muhammad b. Musa al-Harashi-Abu Khalaf ‘Abdallah b. ‘Isa- Daud-`Ikrimah-Ibn ‘Abbas: Quraysh promised the Messenger
of God that they would give him so much wealth that he would become the richest man in Mecca, would give him as many wives as he wanted in marriage, and would submit to his commands. They said, This is what we will give you, Muhammad, so desist from reviling our gods and do not speak evilly of them. If you will not do so, we offer you one means which will be to your advantage and to ours.”
“What is it?” he asked. They said, “You will worship our gods, al-Lit and al-‘Uzza, for a year, and we shall worship your god for a year.”
“Let me see what revelation comes to me from my Lord,” he replied.
Then, the following inspiration came from the Preserved Tablet:
Say: O disbelievers! I worship not that which you worship; nor do you worship that which I worship. And I shall not worship that which you worship, nor will you worship that which I worship. To you your religion, and to me my religion.
God also revealed:
Say: Do you bid me serve other than God? O fools! … (reciting to the words) … Nay, but God must you serve, and be among the thankful!”
Ya’qub b. Ibrahim-Muhammad b. Ishaq-Said b. Mina the mawld of Abu al-Bakhtari:168 Al-Walid b. al-Mughirah, al-‘As b. Wa’il, al-Aswad b. al-Muttalib, and Umayyah b. Khalaf met the Messenger of God and said, “Muhammad, come and let us worship that which you worship and you worship that which we worship, and we shall make you a partner in all of our undertakings. If what you have brought is better than what we already have, we will be partners with you in it and take our share of it, and if what we have is better than what you have, you shall be partner with us in what we have, and you shall take your share of it.” Then God revealed: “Say: O disbelievers … (reciting) to the end of the surah. [ 1192]
Satan Casts a False Revelation on the Messenger of God’s Tongue
The messenger of God was eager for the welfare of his people and wished to effect a reconciliation with them in whatever ways he could. It is said that he wanted to find a way to do this, and what happened was as follows.
[de keten van overleveraars, isnad: Ibn Humayd – Salamah-Muhammad b. Ishaq – Yazid b. Ziyad al-Madani – Muhammad b. Ka’b al-Qurazi:
When the messenger of God saw how his tribe turned their backs on him and was grieved to see them shunning the message he had brought to them from God, he longed in his soul that something would come to him from God which would reconcile him with his tribe. With his love for his tribe and his eagerness for their welfare it would have delighted him if some of the difficulties which they made for him could have been smoothed out, and he debated with himself and fervently desired such an outcome. Then God revealed:
“By the Star when it sets, your comrade does not err, nor is he deceived; nor does he speak out of (his own) desire…”
and when he came to the words:
Have you thought upon al-Lat and al-Uzza and Manat, the third, the other?
Satan cast on his tongue, because of his inner debates and what he desired to bring to his people, the words:
“These are the high flying cranes; verily their intercession is accepted with approval.
When Quraysh heard this, they rejoiced and were happy and delighted at the way in which he spoke of their gods, and they listened to him, while the Muslims, having complete trust in their prophet in respect of the messages which he brought from God, did not suspect him of error, illusion, or mistake. When he came to the prostration, having completed the surah, he prostrated himself and the Muslims did likewise, following their prophet, trusting in the message which he had brought and following his example. Those polytheists of the Quraysh and others who were in the mosque likewise prostrated themselves because of the reference to their gods which they had heard, so that there was no one in the mosque, believer orunbeliever, who did not prostrate himself. The one exception was al-Walid b. Al-Mughirah, who was a very old man and could not prostrate himself; but he took a handful of soil from the valley in his hand and bowed over that. Then they all dispersed from the mosque. The Quraysh left delighted by the mention of their gods which they had hared, saying,”Muhammad has mentioned our goes in the most favorable way possible, stating in his recitation that they are the high flying cranes and that their intercession is received with approval.”
The news of the prostration reached those of the messenger of God’s companions who were in Abyssinia and people said, “The Quraysh have accepted Islam.” Some rose up to return, while others remained behind.
Then Gabriel came to the Messenger of God and said, “Muhammad, what have you done? You have recited to the people that which I did not bring to you from God, and you have said that which was not said to you.” Then the messenger of God was much grieved and feared God greatly, but God sent down a revelation to him, for He was merciful to him, consoling him and making the matter light for him, informing him that there had never been a prophet or a messenger before him who desired as he desired and wished as he wished but that Satan had cast words into his recitation, as he had cast words on Muhammad’s tongue. Then God cancelled what Satan had thus cast, and established his verses by telling him that he was like other prophets and messengers, and revealed:
“Never did we send a messenger or a prophet before you but that when he recited (the Message) Satan cast words into his recitation (umniyyah).
God abrogates what Satan casts.
The God established his verses.
God is knower, wise.
Thus God removed the sorrow from his messenger, reassured him about that which he had feared and cancelled the words which Satan had cast on his tongue, that their gods were the high flying cranes whose intercession was accepted with approval. He now revealed, following the mention of “al-Lat, al-Uzza and Manat, the third, the other,” the words:
“Are yours the males and his the females?
That indeed were an unfair division!
They are but names which you have named,
you and your fathers.”
to the words:
to whom he wills and accept
This means, how can the intercession of their gods avail with God?
When Muhammad brought a revelation from God canceling what Satan had cast on the tongue of His prophet, the Quraysh said,”Muhammad has repented of what he said concerning the position of your gods with God, and has altered it and brought something else.” Those two phrases which Satan had cast on the tongue of the Messenger of God were in the mouth of every polytheists, and they became even more ill-disposed and more violent in their persecution of those of them who had accepted Islam and followed the messenger of God.