When someone is pleased, full of comfort, his heart is beating and shaking, and his tears are falling abundantly when he reads a nice story of one of the narrators or a creative writer, or listens to an expressive story from one of the people or passes by one of impressive scenes of life, how will it be the case if the story is mentioned in the Glorious Qura'n, the greatest book in the entire existence: "Falsehood cannot come to it from before it or behind it: (it is) sent down by the All-Wise, Worthy of all praise (Allâh Exalted and Sublime)." [Surat Fussilat: 42].
How would be the case if the storyteller, the storywriter, and the narrator is Allah, the Lord of all the Worlds and the Great Creator?!
Therefore, the Qur'anic story is an oasis, full of shades, near and different fruits, deep-rooted, of very high branches, which its shade does not end and its beauty shall not wane because it is of a long-extended shade, spilled water, and abundant fruit, neither cut off nor they are out of reach. A great style, wonderful rhythm, and beautiful image, in addition to the situations and psychological analyses it contains, and the gained conclusions behind scenes. The Qur'anic story will remain the flame that enlightens the way for a person to connect his past with the future. Qur'an will remain the connection between a person and his Lord, the only truthful document which a person is sure about its creditability, and will be the straight type which will avoid us distraction and distortion. Who was the one in the story of Madyan?
Ibn Kathir (may Allah bestow mercy on his soul) said: Commentators have differed about that man according to different views:
First, he was Jethro (Peace be upon him) who was sent to the people of Madyan, which is the famous view according to many scholars such as Al Hasan Al Basry and others.
Others said: He was the neph .ew of Jethro.
It was also said: He was a believing person from the people of Jethro.
Others said: Jethro was long time before Moses (Peace be upon him) because he said to his people: "And the people of Lût (Lot) are not far off from you!" [Surat Hud: 89]. The destruction of the people of Lot was in the time of Abraham (Peace be upon him) according to the text of the Qur'an, and he knew that the period between Abraham and Moses (peace be upon them) was more than 400 years as mentioned by commentators.
What has been said that Jethro lived a long period was not correct and this story refutes that claim."
Ibn Kathir (may Allah bestow mercy on his soul) mentioned a number of proofs that the man was not Prophet Jethro (Peace be upon him).
Lessons and implications:
Let us live with this Qur'anic story of Prophet Moses (Peace be upon him) to stop, ponder, and extract some lessons, situations, and implications in order to brighten the souls, fill the hearts, convince the minds, raise high spirit, and the true religiousness is connected with the practical life.
Allah had said the truth when He said: "We relate to you (Muhammad peace be upon him) the best of stories through Our Revelations to you, of this Qur'ân. And before this (i.e. before the coming of Divine Revelation to you), you were among those who knew nothing about it (the Qur'ân)." [Surat Yusuf: 3].
The first lesson is: Thinking well of Allah, trusting Him, and relying on him.
Allah (Glory be to Him) says: "And when he went towards (the land of) Madyan (Midian), he said: "It may be that my Lord guides me to the Right Way."" [Surat Al Qasas: 22].
Moses (Peace be upon him) said while heading toward Madyan: May Allah guide me to the Straight Path which delivers me to my objective and end.
Commentators said: He got out afraid without provision nor a mount, and the distance between Egypt and Madyan was eight-days-walk and he did not know the way but he trusted in Allah, so Allah sent him an angle to show him the way. and truly Allah responded to him and showed him the way.
Ibn Kathir said: "Allah guided him to the Straight Path in the world and in the Hereafter and made him a guide and guided." This is a great lesson that we should learn from the prophets (peace be upon him) and from their great followers throughout history in regard of thinking well of Allah and resorting all matters to Him, and Allah (Glory be to Him) shall not break His Promise to a person. Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him) reported from the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) that he said: "Allah (may He be Glorified and Exalted) said: I am as My Servant thinks of me and I am with him when he mentions me.".
The second lesson is: A believer cares for the conditions of people, enjoins good, and forbids evil: Allah (Glory be to Him) says: "And when he arrived at the water (the well) of Madyan (Midian) he found there a group of men watering (their flocks), and besides them he found two women who were keeping back (their flocks). He said: "What is the matter with you?" They said: "We cannot water (our flocks) until the shepherds take (their flocks). And our father is a very old man."" [Surat Al Qasas: 23].
A believer asks about the conditions of people, does not keep silent about wrong situations, enjoins good, and forbids evil. Prophet Moses (Peace be upon him) did not only watch the scene of the men who seized water without giving women, and two women were exerting efforts to take some water, preventing their sheep to mix with other sheep so as not to be harmed, but he started to ask and interrogate.
The third lesson is: The danger of mixture between men and women, and the corruptions that mixture will cause: "And when he arrived at the water (the well) of Madyan (Midian) he found there a group of men watering (their flocks), and besides them he found two women who were keeping back (their flocks). He said: "What is the matter with you?" They said: "We cannot water (our flocks) until the shepherds take (their flocks). And our father is a very old man."" [Surat Al Qasas: 23].
The two girls preferred to wait, observe patience, and ward off the sheep rushing toward water in order not to compete and mix with them. Mixture is a pure evil that leads to the circulation of harlotry, lack of modesty, loss of honors, circulation of deniable acts, and circulation of fornication, in addition to other serious offenses.
The fourth lesson: The benefit of apology and the removal of doubts from oneself:
Then they said: "And our father is a very old man." [Surat Al Qasas: 23]. Abu Hayyan said: "It contains 1- an apology for Moses because they watered the sheep by themselves. 2- A warning that their father cannot water the sheep because of his old age. 3- Asking Moses to help them.".
The Fifth Lesson: The role of assistance and the fulfillment of needs in the life of a Muslim:
Allah (Glory be to Him) says: "So he watered (their flocks) for them." [Surat Al Qasas: 24].
That was the practical answer of Moses (Peace be upon him) after watching that scene, hearing that answer, and feeling their suffering. He acted with chivalry, magnanimity, and generosity because he knew what Allah has ordained upon him and what Allah loves for him: "So he watered (their flocks) for them." [Surat Al Qasas: 24].
This is the condition of a Muslim when dealing with the people: offers help, fulfills their needs, assists them with money and oneself, and offers all he can.
The Sixth Lesson is: Resorting, beseeching, invoking, and showing humbleness to the Creator (Exalted be He). Allah (may He be Glorified and Exalted) says: "So he watered (their flocks) for them, then he turned back to shade, and said: "My Lord! truly, I am in need of whatever good that You bestow on me!"" [Surat Al Qasas: 24]. A lesson in resorting to the Creator (Glory be to Him) seeking His Help, and invoking Him. This reminds us with the invocation of the Prophet (peace be upon him) when he went to At-Ta'if, while he was showing his disability and weakness, showing his poverty and need, asking for the mercy of his Lord, and asking for His Generosity. "O Allah! I complain to the weakness of my strength, my lack of means, and my easiness with the people.".
The Seventh Lesson is: the manner of invocation, high and fine taste, and continuous Dhikr:
Look at the manner of invocation, the secret talks, and the high and fine taste of Moses (Peace be upon him) when he says: "My Lord! truly, I am in need of whatever good that You bestow on me!" [Surat Al Qasas: 24]. He did not say: I am in need to your goodness O Lord. He did not say: feed me for instance, but he expressed his needs with these wonderful words; and that is the case of all prophets when they supplicate and talk with Allah.
The eighth lesson is: The natural modesty of a woman:
Allah (may He be Exalted) says: "Then there came to him one of the two women, walking shyly." [Surat Al Qasas: 25].
She went to him by the command of her father, "walking shyly." [Surat Al Qasas: 25]. A walk full of modesty, without basing, grooming, temptation, seduction, but a modest walk; because a straight girl feels shy by her natural disposition when meeting men and talking with them. 
The Ninth Lesson: The speech of a Muslim woman with foreigners is abridged, clear, direct, and without temptation: "She said: "Verily, my father calls you that he may reward you for having watered (our flocks) for us."" [Surat Al Qasas: 25].
She directed the invitation to Moses (Peace be upon him) in short and clear wordings. She did not talk too much but talked briefly but her talk was obvious without disturbance or stammering that tempts men. Ibn Kathir said: "This is a polite statement shows that she did not ask him to come directly lest it may cause a suspicion." 
The Tenth Lesson: The reward of the action and the importance of rearing children properly: "She said: "Verily, my father calls you that he may reward you for having watered (our flocks) for us."" [Surat Al Qasas: 25]. My father asks for you to reward you for your action. The description of these two girls in the Surah is a praise for them from our Lord and a praise for their father who raised, guided, and educated them well until they became well-mannered as shown in the Surah. This makes the duty of fathers and instructors very important in increasing modesty which protects youth against evils and sins..
The Eleventh Lesson: A man needs someone to relieve him and to assure him:
Allah (Glory be to Him) says: "So, when he came to him and narrated the story, he said: "Fear you not. You have escaped from the people who are Zâlimûn (polytheists, disbelievers, and wrong-doers)."" [Surat Al Qasas: 25]. When Moses (peace be upon him) reached the righteous man and told him his story, he said to him: "Do not be afraid, be comfortable, and calm yourself, you have came out of their kingdom and they have no power here. Therefore, he said: "You have escaped from the people who are Zâlimûn (polytheists, disbelievers, and wrong-doers)." [Surat Al Qasas: 25]. A person always needs someone to relieve him and reassure his heart.
The Twelfth Lesson: The sound of straight and sound femininity:
"And said one of them (the two women): "O my father! Hire him!"" [Surat Al Qasas: 26]. She suggests to her father to hire him so as to suffice her and her sister work, mixture, and evils, and he is powerful to work and entrusted with money. So, the honest person who protects honor can protect anything else. She does not stammer while saying that and does not fear ill-thinking and accusation because she is innocent and clean, therefore, she fears nothing while suggesting to her father that she and her sister were suffering from grazing sheep, and competing with men for water, and from mixture with men. She and her sister are harmed by that action and wants to sit at home chaste and covered without mixing with strangers. A chaste woman of pure nature does not feel comfortable when mixing with men nor the evils resulting from such competition. 
The Thirteenth Lesson: Two main conditions for sound administration:
"Verily, the best of men for you to hire is the strong, the trustworthy." [Surat Al Qasas: 26]. Abu Hayyan said: "Her saying is inclusive and wise because if the one who manages or rules combines sufficiency and honesty, he will be fit."  The most important conditions and more genuine are two: "Strength and Honesty." It is natural that the power mentioned previously is not only the power of body, but also the ability to bear the responsibility.
The Fourteenth Lesson: A person may offer his daughter to a righteous man for marriage:
"He said: "I intend to wed one of these two daughters of mine to you." [Surat Al Qasas: 27]. I want to give you one of my two daughters in marriage. His proposal was not ashamed of, he proposed establishing a family and the building of a house, and there is nothing shameful in that. Moreover, there is nothing to cause embarrassment, artificiality, and affectation, which is seen in the environment that deviates from both common sense and is subject to artificial, void, and silly traditions which prevent a parent or guardian to offer the hand of his sister or daughter or one of his relatives to the person whom he thinks to be righteous or fit for the girl. It is ironical that boys and girls in our corrupt environments are talking, mixing, and displaying their adornments to strangers without betrothal or even a will of marriage. However, when betrothal and marriage is mentioned, artificial shyness and barriers show up to prevent openness, simplicity, and explanation!.
The Fifteenth Lesson: Hiring oneself:
"on condition that you serve me for eight years." [Surat Al Qasas: 27]. The righteous sheikh said to Moses (peace be upon him): I shall give you one of my daughters in marriage on condition that you serve me for eight years and tender my sheep. "But if you complete ten years, it will be (a favor) from you." [Surat Al Qasas: 27]. If you complete ten years, it will be something extra from you and not incumbent on you.
"The followers of Imam Ahmad and those who followed them hold this Ayah as a proof on the permissibility of hiring an employee for food and clothing, and mentioned what Ibn Majah reported in this context.", `Utbah ibn An-Nadr said: We were with the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) and he was read "Ta Sin" until he reached the story of Moses, he said: "Moses (peace be upon him) hired himself eight or ten years for marriage and food." 
The Sixteenth Lesson: Putting not hardship on Muslims:
"I intend not to place you under a difficulty." [Surat Al Qasas: 27]. The righteous man said to Moses (peace be upon him): I do not want to put you in hardship by conditioning ten years and I do not want to cause you any harm; this is the way of the righteous people when they are burdened with work or were hired to fulfill a job.
The Seventeenth Lesson: Fine manners when talking about oneself:
"You will find me one of the righteous." [Surat Al Qasas: 27]. You will find me good in treatment, lenient, and loyal to the covenant, so he does not praise himself and does not confirm that he is one of the righteous. Ibn Kathir said: "No one is able to guide himself, or become faithful, or cause good for himself except by the will of Allah." 
The Eighteenth Lesson: There is no room for ambiguity in the contract or the terms of contract:
Moses (peace be upon him) said: "He [Mûsâ (Moses)] said: "That (is settled) between me and you: whichever of the two terms I fulfill, there will be no injustice to me." [Surat Al Qasas: 28]. What you have said and promised me is between you and me and whether you spend eight or ten years, there is no transgression in the costs of work and there is no obligation in the ten years because the extra two years is an option. 
The Nineteenth Lesson: Clarity of personality, taking caution, and performing work in the best way:
Moses (peace be upon him) said that statement: "That (is settled) between me and you: whichever of the two terms I fulfill, there will be no injustice to me." In the line with the integrity of his nature, the clarity of his character, and the fulfillment of his contract, and he intended to fulfill one of the best two terms as he did. For the sake of executing the contract and taking caution, Moses (peace be upon him) made Allah a witness over them and said: "And Allâh is Surety over what we say." [Surat Al Qasas: 28]. Allah is a witness to what we have agreed upon, for He is the Witness who sets justice between the two contracting parties, and Allah is sufficient as a Trustee.
The Twentieth Lesson: The School of putting trust in Allah:
Moses (peace be upon him) relied on his Lord (Glory be to Him) in all his affairs. This story shows models of absolute trust in Allah. When he fled to Madyan as a runner away, he said: "He said: "It may be that my Lord guides me to the Right Way."" [Surat Al Qasas: 22]. And when he went to the shade tired, he said: "My Lord! truly, I am in need of whatever good that You bestow on me!" [Surat Al Qasas: 24]. When he concluded the contract with the righteous person, he said: "And Allâh is Surety over what we say." [Surat Al Qasas: 28]. Relying on Allah is the case of all prophets and messengers as well as their followers until the Day of Recompense. Allah (Glory be to Him) says: "And in Allah let the believers put their trust" [Surat Ibrahim: 11].
 Fadel Hassan `Abbas, "Quranic stories: Iha'uhu wa Nafahatuh", vol. 1, 1st edition (Jordan: Dar Al Furqan, 1987), p. 9-13 with slight modification.
 Ibn Kathir, "Interpretation of the Great Qur'an", vol. 3, (Beirut: Dar al Fikr, 1401 H) p. 385.
 Ibid, vol. 2, p. 430.
 Ibid, p. 384.
 Muslim, the Book of Dhikr, invocation, repentance, and seek forgiveness, chapter on exhortation to mentioning Allah, Hadith No. 4832.
 "Al Bahr Al Muheet", vol. 7, p. 113.
 Abu Al Hasan An-Nadwy, "Reflections on the Literature", 1st edition (Jordan: Dar Al Bashir for Publishing and Distribution, 1991), p. 37.
 Sayyid Qutb, "Under the shade of the Qur'an", vol. 5, p. 2668 with slight modification.
 Ibn Kathir, op, vol. 3, p. 384.
 Mohiuddin Mastu, "Modesty is the master of morals", 1st edition (Damascus: Dar Al Kalim At-Tayyib, 1996), p. 53.
 "The interpretation of Al Baydawy", op, vol. 4, p. 288.
 Sayyid Qutb, op, p. 2687.
 "Ocean Sea", vol. 7, p. 114.
 Sayyid Qutb, op, p. 2688.
 Ibn Kathir, op, vol. 3, p. 386.
 "Sunan Ibn Majah," a book of rulings, chapter on hiring a person for food and drink, Hadith No. 2435.
 As-Sabuny, op, vol. 3, p. 497.
 Sayyid Qutb, op, p. 2689.
 Ibid, p. 2689.
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