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Offline Reader Questions

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Is Verse 80:15 Referring to Angels or Human Scribes?
« on: March 13, 2013, 06:50:00 PM »
the interpretation from Joseph point to companions from the Prophet but maybe they are the angles? Because the sheets they are purified, honored and exalted- points to the kitab maknun in 56.78.


Source: http://quransmessage.com/forum/index.php?topic=739

Offline Joseph Islam

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Is Verse 80:15 Referring to Angels or Human Scribes?
« Reply #1 on: March 13, 2013, 06:51:00 PM »
Dear Chadiga,

May peace be with you.

With respect to your comment:

the interpretation from Joseph point to companions from the Prophet but maybe they are the angles? Because the sheets they are purified, honored and exalted- points to the kitab maknun in 56.78.


Please see my evidence for the support of my interpretation which is expressed in a related article. [1]

1 (a) Firstly, what is verse 80:13 referring to?

It is primarily referring to an earthly admonishment that the Prophet of God received. Please see preceding verses 80:1-12. Now where are these admonishments likely to be transcribed? In a heavenly tablet before the Prophet even made the oversight mentioned in 80:1 based on his 'choices' or was it transcribed later after the event had occurred by noble scribes into a tangible scripture as part of revelation?

I strongly feel that logic demands the latter, i.e. that scribes noted this ‘admonishment’ after the event occurred and it was revealed to the Prophet as part of Quranic inspiration.

2 (i)   80:13 'fi suhufin mukarrama' (Literally: In honoured leaves) The Arabic 'suhuf' has been referred to as a reference to the Quran in another verse (98:2). It is also used as tangible earthly scriptures such as in verses 20:133, 53:36, 74:52 and 87:18-19. Apart from the scrolls of our deeds (80:13), the usage of 'suhuf' (scrolls) to signify earthly tangible scripture is pretty conclusive in my opinion.  Furthermore, the verb 'karrama' (to honour, or one who is honoured) has been used in an earthly sense (17:62; 17:72).

(ii) 80:14 ‘marfu'atin mutahhara’ kept pure / holy / exalted / purified - This can apply to the Quran as well as a Heavenly Tablet. Using 80:14 on its own is inconclusive.

(iii) 80:15 'bi'aydi safara' (Literally: 'written by the hands / in the hands' (of) scribes. This is a very explicit reference. Unless anyone can provide clear, unequivocal evidence from the Quran (not philosophical, metaphorical interpretations) that angels are 'scribes' or have 'physical hands' that need to transcribe in this manner, then these are earthly human hands being referred to here. If God can mention that angels have wings (35:1), the Quran could have clearly mentioned that angels also have hands and are described as 'scribes' (safarah). Angels have only been mentioned as ‘katibin’ (82:11) (those that record ones deeds) not 'scribes' (safarah). Such a description is generally noted for humans.

(iv) 80:16 ‘kiramin barara’ (Literally: Noble and and virtuous/pious)  - Although the word 'karim' has been used for both angels (12:31) and humans (44:17), the verb 'barra' (to be pious, just, deal kindly) has only been used to denote humans in the Quran [2:224, 60:8]. Please also see the usage of the noun 'barr' in verses 3:193,98, 19:14,32, 52:28, 82:13,83:18 and 83:22.

3 (i) Please also refer to the instruction to believers to note / remember the admonishment in verse 80:12 which arguably by implication means to take heed from it. Are believers really expected to consult and ponder over heavenly written tablets or an earthly scripture?

Therefore, even if 2(ii) is inconclusive, 1(a), 2(i), 2(iii), 2(iv) and 3(a) are indicative of humans and an earthly transcription.


With respect to your comment:

and in 56.79  La yamassuhu illa almutahharoona which none but the pure [of heart] can touch:

Please see related article [2] below.

I have presented the evidence before you as to why I lean to the interpretation that I do. I trust this helps in some small way, God willing.

Your brother in faith,
Joseph.  :)


REFERENCES:

[1] THE COMPILATION OF THE QURAN
http://quransmessage.com/articles/the%20compilation%20of%20the%20quran%20FM3.htm
[2] DO I NEED TO PERFORM ABLUTION (WUDU) BEFORE I CAN TOUCH THE QURAN?
http://quransmessage.com/articles/wudu%20before%20touching%20the%20quran%20FM3.htm
'During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act' 
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