Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Egypt: Important Commentary On The Advisory Report

A commentary was received from one of the readers regarding the last post on Egypt's Commissioner's Advisory Report to the Supreme Administrative Court which was submitted in preparation for the Court's scheduled session of 20 November 2006. Because of the importance of the issue discussed, it seemed appropriate to publish this commentary in its entirety as a post.

Even though it is clearly known that Baha'is are strictly forbidden from participating in partisan politics, page 99 of Rose el-Yousef article refers to the commissioner's report which accused the Baha'is of "claiming divinity, and that they have exited the sphere of religious belief and entered the political arena opposing the Arab Nation, and in disregard of Islam and Muslims, they promoted in their books the Zionist proclamations announcing that the children of Israel will be returning to the Holy Land where the Jewish Nation--which was dispersed in the east, the west, the north and the south--will gather."

The following is the commentary responding to the above made claim:

Abdul- Abhá was not the only one who prophesized about the return of Jews to their land. The Qur'an states this clearly in Surat Al-Isra’a, verse 104.

Abdullah Yusuf Ali, in his new edition translation of the Holy Qur’an “The Meaning of The Holy Qur’an”, wrote in the footnotes about the verse 104 of Surat Al-Isra’a, page 703, that some commentators refer this verse to the Day of Judgement.

One understands from the above verse, that God, on the Day of Judgement, will gather the Children of Israel in mingled crowds. And this promise, according to Abdul-Abhá, “is clearly stated in all the Books of the Prophets.”

-In 1906 Abdul-Abhá prophesized that Jews will return to Palestine to establish their country. It is known that the Balfour Declaration was adopted in 1917. Here is the quote:

“One of the great events which is to occur in the Day of the manifestation of that Incomparable Branch (Bahá'u'lláh) is the hoisting of the Standard of God among all nations. By this is meant that all nations and kindreds will be gathered together under the shadow of this Divine Banner, which is no other than the Lordly Branch itself, and will become a single nation. Religious and sectarian antagonism, the hostility of races and peoples, and differences among nations, will be eliminated. All men will adhere to one religion, will have one common faith, will be blended into one race, and become a single people. All will dwell in one common fatherland, which is the planet itself. Universal peace and concord will be realized between all the nations, and that Incomparable Branch will gather together all Israel, signifying that in this cycle Israel will be gathered in the Holy Land, and that the Jewish people who are scattered to the East and West, South and North, will be assembled together.
Now see: these events did not take place in the Christian cycle, for the nations did not come under the One Standard which is the Divine Branch. But in this cycle of the Lord of Hosts all the nations and peoples will enter under the shadow of this Flag. In the same way, Israel, scattered all over the world, was not reassembled in the Holy Land in the Christian cycle; but in the beginning of the cycle of Bahá'u'lláh this divine promise, as is clearly stated in all the Books of the Prophets, has begun to be manifest. You can see that from all the parts of the world tribes of Jews are coming to the Holy Land; they live in villages and lands which they make their own, and day by day they are increasing to such an extent that all Palestine will become their home.”
(Abdu’l-Bahá, Some Answered Questions, p. 65)

For more analysis (in Arabic/English), please click here.


  1. Even though Abdul-Baha was not really prophecizing when He said this, rather he was referencing prophecies in the different holy books, the statement He made is still difficult for our Eastern (and specially Arab) ears to hear and our minds to bear, therefore I think it is important to cite a couple more of these prophecies from the Holy Qur'an (other than Al-Isra 104):

    [59:2] : "He it is Who caused those who disbelieved of the followers of the Book (Jews ?) to go forth from their homes till the first gathering (Li awalil hashr) you did not think that they would go forth, while they were certain that their fortresses would defend them against Allah; but Allah came to them whence they did not expect, and cast terror into their hearts; they demolished their houses with their own hands and the hands of the believers; therefore take a lesson, O you who have eyes! "

    [17:4] : "And We decreed for the Children of Israel in the Scripture: Ye verily will work corruption in the earth twice, and ye will become great tyrants*. "

    *A literal translation is : Ye will then after (thumma) ascend (ta’lunna) to a great height (or station).

    In Christianity and Judaism, the return of the Jews to Palestine is also one of the signs of the Day of Judgment (see here for example and more here.

    But one may say that this is fine but it is all about the Day of Judgment (Qiyama) whic is not here yet !! for this I recommend this article on the Day of Judgment .


  2. Thank you Hissam for your comment. This adds to our understanding of past prophesies. It would be helpful to also receive more comments from other knowledgeable readers like yourself.

  3. I have a question about understanding what 59:2 is saying.
    Is it thatMuhammad is saying "Allah caused the Jews to leave their homes from the time they were dispersed (by Rome?). And that many did not believe they would be dispersed, (forcefully by the Roman army?). They thought they could stand against Rome, which was acting as an agent of Allah..

    What is the significance that they did it themselves, along with "the hands of the believers"? Does this mean Arabs of that day and age?
    So I wonder was this a divine punishment/test for the Jews to endure as a consequence of their actions..and this is what the Muslims should take from that historical event? So, what does that have to do with the signs of the Day of Judgement? For the Muslims have not been dispersed?

    And going on, Israel will become a great tyrant twice, is that to mean now, or in the future. It is debatable whether they are a great tyrant yet. So it seems that one could argue that since these events are yet to be, from my understanding, so the treatment of the Bahais is unrelated to these prophesies. Can you help me?

    Edo River rising

  4. Hissam:

    Can you please help with answering Edo River's questions?

  5. Since Hissam has not answered Edo River yet, I will attempt to share my understanding of these verses.

    First, according to Muslim belief, the words in the Holy Qura'n are from God and not from Muhammad.

    Basically the verse [59:2] is saying that for their disbelief, .. and against their expectations and arrogance, the Jews were scattered all over, and that they did that to themselves (by their hands). Their enemies helped make that happen. The connection with the Day of Judgment, is that this scattering was for a set time (not forever), and at around the time of the beginning of the Day of Judgment, they would be brought back.

    As for the second verse, the word tyrant is used in one of the many translations. It's not directly from the original Arabic. Hissam explained it below, saying that the literal meaning of the verse says that they will do mischief twice (against Christianity and Islam??), then they will rise to a higher and more prominant station.

    I hope this quick and general take on these verses helps. - Faisal

  6. Thank you Faisal for this clarification. Perhaps Hissam is away on vacation, and I am sure he would appreciate your filling in with your comment.

  7. Thank you Faisal. Your understanding of these verses is very similar to mine.



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