Tafsir Surat Al-Tawbah 23-24

Allah Ta’ala says: “O you who have believed, do not take your fathers or your brothers as allies if they have preferred disbelief over belief. And whoever does so among you - then it is those who are the wrongdoers. Say, [O Muhammad (ﷺ)], “If your fathers, your sons, your brothers, your wives, your clan, wealth which you have obtained, commerce wherein you fear decline, and dwellings with which you are pleased are more beloved to you than Allah and His Messenger and jihad in His cause, then wait until Allah brings about His decree (of punishment). And Allah does not guide the defiantly disobedient people” [Al-Tawbah :23-24].

{O you who have believed}, act in accordance with the requirements of your faith, by taking as allies those who adhere to it and regarding as enemies those who do not do so, {do not take your fathers or your brothers as allies} they are the closest of people to you, so it is even more appropriate that you should not take as allies other people {if they have preferred disbelief over belief} that is, they willingly choose disbelief over faith.

{And whoever does so among you - then it is those who are the wrongdoers} because they have transgressed and disobeyed Allah, by taking His enemies as allies. The basis of alliance is love and support; by taking them as allies, this implies giving precedence to obeying them over obedience to Allah and giving precedence to loving them over loving Allah and His Messenger. The reason why they are wrongdoers is that love of Allah and His Messenger should be given precedence over love of all others, and everything else should be secondary to them.

Hence Allah says: {Say, [O Muhammad(ﷺ)]], “If your fathers} and, by the same token, mothers {your sons, your brothers} in lineage and kinship {your wives, your clan} that is, your relatives in general {wealth which you have obtained} that is, that you have earned and toiled for. This is singled out for mention because people are more attached to it and more careful with it than wealth that comes to them without effort or striving.

{commerce wherein you fear decline} that is, you fear that the prices of goods will drop or that they will be lost. This includes all kinds of trade and earnings, such as trade goods, vessels, weapons, furniture, grains, farmland, livestock and so on. {dwellings with which you are pleased} because of their beauty and adornment, and because they suit your desires if these things {are more beloved to you than Allah and His Messenger and jihad in His cause}, then you are transgressors and wrongdoers. {then wait} and watch out for that which will befall you of punishment {until Allah brings about His decree (of punishment)} which cannot be put back {And Allah does not guide the defiantly disobedient people} that is, those who fail to obey Him and give precedence to any of the things mentioned above over love of Allah. This verse provides the greatest evidence for the obligation to love Allah and His Messenger, and to give them precedence over love of anything else. It also provides evidence for the stern warning and certain wrath for the one to whom any of these things is dearer than Allah and His Messenger, and jihad in His cause.

The sign of that is that if a person is presented with two options, one of which is loved by Allah and His Messenger, but he has no inclination towards it, and the other option is something that he loves and desires, but it will cause him to miss out on or will detract from the thing that is loved by Allah and His Messenger, if he gives precedence to that which he himself desires over that which Allah loves, this indicates that he is a wrongdoer who is not doing what he should do.