Al-Haram Mosque in Makkah The Prophet's Mosque in Madinah . Al-Aqsa Mosque Compound in Jerusalem


Islam: God's Message of Guidance to Humanity


By Hassan Ali El-Najjar


Table of Contents


I. Introduction: Basic Information


1. Islam: A Brief Introduction


2. Three Levels of Faith: Islam, Iman, and Ihsan 


3. The Scientific Evidence That God Exists and the Holy Qur'an Is His Message to Humanity 


4. Creation and Evolution in the Holy Qur'an


5. Humans, As God's Caliphs on Earth


6. Adam's Contest With the Angels, and Getting Out of Paradise

Worshippers By Choice Or Forced Slaves?  


8. The Relationship Between the Spiritual and the Physical Aspects of Islamic Teachings  


9. Spirit, Soul, Mind, Self, and Happiness, from an Islamic Perspective


10. Heart-Mind Relationship in the Holy Qur'an  


II. Islam: The Five Pillars of the Faith Structure


11. Islamic Proclamation of Faith


12. Performing Islamic Prayers


13. Giving Zakat, Charity, The Third Islamic Duty


14. Fasting and Ramadhan, Great Gifts from Allah to Muslims


15. Haj, Pilgrimage, the Fifth Pillar of Islam


III. Iman: Allah, His Angels, Messengers, Messages, Latter Day, and Qadar


16. Allah, As He Described Himself in the Holy Quran 


17. Angels


18. Noo'h, Noah, in the Holy Quran  


19. Ibrahim, Abraham, in the Holy Quran


20. Moussa, Moses, in the Holy Quran


21. 'Eissa, Jesus Christ, in the Holy Quran  


22. Muhammed in the Holy Quran


23. Prophet Muhammed's Night Journey and Ascent to Heavens, Al-Issra Wal Mi'raj


24. The Last Day, The Hour, Resurrection, Reckoning, and Judgment


25. God's Precise Measurement and His Just Decree, Al-Qadar Wal Qadha


IV. I'hsan: Watching Allah in Speech and Deeds


1. Introduction to Islamic Law, Shari'a, Part I, Prohibition, Don't Do, and Do Commands in the Holy Quran


2. The La (No) Commands


3. The Imperative Commands 




Articles with Islamic Perspective:


Health Care Crisis in the US: An Islamic Perspective


"Terrorism" & "Islamo-Fascism" Propaganda Campaigns: An Interactive Lecture


Six Questions About Islam, Muslims and Jews


Five Islamic Issues: Predestination and choice, position toward other religions, angels, and the End of Days

Food Islamic Rules and Teachings


Are Muslim women second-class citizens  


The French Ban on Islamic Headscarf, an Interview with


Links to Islamic Topics 2007-2010


Links to Islamic Topics 2007


Links to Islamic topics 2006


Links to Islamic topics 2005


Links to Islamic topics 2004


Links to Islamic topics, 2003


2002 Links to Islamic topics






God's Message of Guidance to Humanity




Moussa, Moses:


The Messenger Supported with Nine Miracles


Peace to him


In the Holy Quran


By Hassan Ali El-Najjar


3rd of Jumada Al-Oula, 1436 - 22nd of February, 2015


Uprated on the 25th Day of Sha'ban, 1438 - 21st Day of May, 2017








7   1436 - 26 2015


1438 - 2017







I seek refuge with God from the Stoned Shaytan

In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful







The name of the Messenger of Allah Moussa (Moses), peace be upon him (pbuh), is mentioned in the Holy Quran 136 times, which is many more times than mentioning names of other Messengers of Allah. Actually, the story of Moussa and his people (the Children of Israel) is strongly present and used throughout the Holy Quran, as guidance and lessons to humanity. [1]


Although it is not possible to write about Moussa, peace be upon him, without including the Children of Israel, this Chapter focuses on his life, mission, and the lessons Allah wants humanity to learn from. The story of Children of Israel in the Holy Quran is much bigger than a chapter of a book. It needs to be addressed separately elsewhere.


This Chapter tells the story of Moussa, peace be upon him, as documented in the verses of the Holy Quran, from various Suras (chapters). The presentation of these verses is an attempt by this author to follow some kind of a chronological order, which may not coincide with the verse or chapter numbers in the Holy Quran.


The English translation of the verses in this Chapter, as well as throughout the Book, is based mainly on the translation of "Sahih International," which is published at the website. However, this author is solely responsible for any changes in the translation.


The Chapter is divided into eleven sections, starting with Moussa's birth (pbuh), his adoption and education in the Pharaoh's palace, then his running away from Egypt, settling down in Madyan, speaking with Allah and receiving his mission mandate, his encounter with the Pharaoh and demanding him to free the Children of Israel, the Pharaoh's refusal and God's signs to convince him, the Exodus and the miracle of splitting the sea, death of the Pharaoh by drowning and preserving his body as a lesson to humanity, the inability to enter the Holy Land from the coastal region, lost in Sinai for forty years, the Tablets and the calf ordeal, and the crash course of learning from Al-Khadhir. 



1. Birth, Adoption, and Education in the Pharaoh's Palace


Moussa, pbuh, was born in Egypt at a time when the king (Fir'awn, Pharaoh) was a brutal tyrant, dividing the people into factions, and persecuting some of them by killing their newly-born sons and leaving their daughters to live. Allah, praise to Him, decided to save the oppressed people and to punish the Pharaoh, his prime minister, Haman, and their soldiers (Al-Qasas, 28: 1-6).




  ﴿١﴾ ﴿٢﴾ ٰ ﴿٣  ۚ ﴿٤﴾ ﴿٥﴾ ﴿٦ ( 28: 1-6). 


I seek refuge with God from the Stoned Shaytan

In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful 


Ta, Seen, Meem. (1) These are the verses of the clear Book. (2) We recite to you from the news of Moussa (Moses) and Pharaoh in truth, for a people who believe. (3) Indeed, Pharaoh exalted himself in the land and made its people into factions, oppressing a sector among them, slaughtering their (newborn) sons and keeping their females alive. Indeed, he was of the corrupters. (4) And We wanted to confer favor upon those who were oppressed in the land, and make them leaders and make them inheritors (5) And establish them in the land and show Pharaoh, (his prime minister) Haman, and their soldiers, through them, that which they had feared. (6) (Al-Qasas, 28: 1-6).




Allah, praise to Him, inspired Moussa's mother to put him in a chest (box) and to throw him on the River Nile, the water flow took him to the Pharaoh's palace, where he was picked up by the servants. As soldiers were about to kill him, like other newly-born boys, the Pharaoh's wife persuaded her husband to save his life and adopt him, as they didn't have a son at that time. However, the baby Moussa refused to suckle milk from any nursing woman they brought him. His sister told them that she knew one more nursing woman he might accept. That was his mother, whom he accepted, which made her happy after her sadness (Al-Qasas, 28: 7-13 and Ta Ha, 20: 38-40).



ٰ ٰ  ۖ  ۖ ﴿٧﴾  ۗ ﴿٨﴾  ۖ ٰ ﴿٩﴾ ٰ  ۖ ٰ ﴿١٠﴾  ۖ ﴿١١﴾ ٰ ﴿١٢﴾ ٰ ٰ ﴿١٣ ( 28: 7-13).  


And We inspired to the mother of Moussa (Moses), "Suckle him; but when you fear for him, cast him into the river and do not fear and do not grieve. We will return him to you and will make him (one) of the messengers." (7) And the family of Pharaoh picked him up (out of the river) so that he would become to them an enemy and a (cause of) grief. Indeed, Pharaoh, Haman, and their soldiers were sinners. (8) And the wife of Pharaoh said, "(He will be) a comfort of the eye for me and for you. Do not kill him; perhaps he may benefit us, or we may adopt him as a son, while they do not notice." (9) And the heart of Moussa's mother became empty. She was about to disclose (the matter concerning) him had We not bound fast her heart, that she would be of the believers. (10) And she said to his sister, "Follow him"; so she watched him from a distance while they did not notice. (11) And We had prevented from him (all) wet nurses before. So, (his sister) said, "Shall I direct you to a household that will be responsible for him for you, while they are sincere to him?" (12) So, We returned him to his mother, that she might be content and not grieve, and that she would know that the promise of Allah is true. But most of them (people) do not know. (13) (Al-Qasas, 28: 7-13).



ٰ ٰ ﴿٣٨﴾  ۚ ٰ ﴿٣٩﴾ ٰ  ۖ ٰ  ۚ  ۚ ٰ ٰ ﴿٤٠﴾ ﴿٤١  ( 20: 38-40).



We inspired to your mother what We inspired, (38) (Saying), "Cast him into the chest and cast it into the river, and the river will throw it onto the bank; there will take him an enemy to Me and an enemy to him." And I bestowed upon you love from Me, that you would be brought up under My eye. (39) Your sister went and said, "Shall I direct you to someone who will be responsible for him?" So We restored you to your mother. that she might be content and not grieve. And you killed someone, but We saved you from retaliation, and We tried you with a (severe) trial. And you remained years among the people of Madyan. Then, you came at the decreed time, O Moussa. (40) And I produced you for Myself. (41) (Ta Ha, 20: 38-40). 



2. Running Away from Egypt


Thus, Moussa, pbuh, was saved and was brought up as the adopted son of the Pharaoh. However, he still knew his origin as an Israelite. So, one day, when he became a strong young man, an Israelite was being beaten by an Egyptian man. The Israelite saw Moussa, and asked him for help. Moussa, pbuh, killed the Egyptian man with one blow. The following day, the same scene was repeated but Moussa did not kill the other Egyptian man. Moussa was told that the soldiers were looking for him, to kill him, for killing the Egyptian man the day before. He became afraid and decided to flee Egypt to avoid punishment, as we read in verses 14-21 of Surat Al-Qasas (Chapter 28) of the Holy Quran. 



ٰ  ۚ ٰ ﴿١٤﴾ ٰ ٰ ٰ  

 ۖ ٰ ٰ  ۖ ٰ  ۖ ﴿١٥﴾  ۚ ﴿١٦﴾ ﴿١٧﴾  ۚ ٰ ﴿١٨﴾ ٰ  ۖ ﴿١٩﴾ ٰ ٰ ﴿٢٠﴾  ۖ ﴿٢١ ( 28: 14-21).  


And when he attained his full strength and was (mentally) mature, We bestowed upon him judgment and knowledge. And thus We reward the doers of good. (14) And he entered the city at a time of inattention by its people and found therein two men fighting: one from his faction and one from among his enemy. The one from his faction called on him for help against the one from his enemy. So, Moussa struck him and (unintentionally) killed him. (Moussa) said, "This is from the work of Shaytan (Satan). Indeed, he is a manifest, misleading enemy." (15) He said, "My Lord, I have wronged myself, so forgive me," and He forgave him. Indeed, He is the Forgiving, the Merciful. (16) He said, "My Lord, for the favor You bestowed upon me, I will never be a supporter to the criminals." (17) And he became inside the city fearful and anticipating (the consequences), when the one who sought his help the previous day cried out to him (once again). Moussa said to him, "Indeed, you are an evident deviator." (18) And when he wanted to strike the one who was an enemy to both of them, he said, "O Moussa, do you want to kill me as you killed someone yesterday? You only want to be a tyrant in the land and you do not want to be of the good doers." (19) And a man came from the farthest end of the city, running. He said, "O Moussa, the eminent ones are conferring over you, to kill you. So, leave (the city), I am to you of the sincere advisors." (20) So, he left it, fearful and anticipating (apprehension). He said, "My Lord, save me from the wrongdoing people." (21) (Al-Qasas, 28: 14-21). 



3. Settling Down in Madyan


Moussa, pbuh, left Egypt traveling east through the Sinai desert until he reached Madyan, which is believed to be part of today's northwestern Saudi Arabia and southwester Jordan. There, he saw two women who needed assistance in watering their herd of animals from a water-well. He helped them. As they left, he sat under a tree , hungry and tired, asking help from Allah, praise to Him. One of the two women came back to him, telling him that her elderly father wanted to reward him for what he did. Moussa told his story to the old man, who comforted him and told him not to be afraid any more as he became safe in Madyan. One of the two daughters asked her father to hire him, as he turned to be a strong and a trust-worthy man. The Elderly man offered him to marry one of his two daughters in return for his work in taking care of their animals for eight years, then he asked for two more years, as an extra favor, as mentioned in verses 22-28 of Surat Al-Qasas (Chapter 28) of the Holy Quran. 



ٰ ﴿٢٢﴾  ۖ

 ۖ ٰ  ۖ ﴿٢٣﴾ ٰ ٰ ﴿٢٤

 ۚ  ۖ ﴿٢٥ 

 ۖ ﴿٢٦﴾ ٰ  ۖ  ۖ  ۚ ﴿٢٧﴾ ٰ  ۖ  ۖ ٰ ﴿٢٨ ( 28: 22-28).  


And when he directed himself toward Madyan, he said, "Perhaps my Lord will guide me to the right path." (22) And when he came to the water (well) of Madyan, he found there a crowd of people watering (their flocks), and he found aside from them two women driving back (their flocks). He said, "What is the matter with you?" They said, "We do not water until the shepherds dispatch (their flocks); and our father is an old man." (23) So, he watered (their flocks) for them; then he went back to the shade and said, "My Lord, I am in need for whatever good You would send down to me." (24) Then, one of the two women came to him walking with shyness. She said, "My father invites you, to reward you, for having watered for us." So, when he came to him and related to him the story, he said, "Fear not, you have escaped from the wrongdoing people." (25) One of the women said, "O my father, hire him, as the best one you can hire is the strong and the trustworthy." (26) He said, "I wish to wed you one of these, my two daughters, on (the condition) that you serve me for eight years; but if you complete (them to) ten, it will be (as a favor) from you. And I do not wish to put you in difficulty. You will find me, if Allah wills, from among the righteous." (27) (Moussa said, "That is (established, agreed upon) between me and you. Whichever of the two terms I complete - there is no injustice to me, and Allah, over what we say, is Witness." (28) (Al-Qasas, 28: 22-28). 



4. Speaking With Allah and Receiving the Mission Mandate


When Moussa, pbuh, completed the ten years of work for his father-in-law, he left with his family and their animals to visit his relatives in Egypt, secretly. During their travel in Sinai, near Al-Tour Mountain, he saw a fire. He told his family members to stay where they were, while he would explore the fire and bring information back about it, or a piece of it for them to use afterwards. As he reached the fire, which was in a tree, he heard Allah, praise to Him, speaking to him, saying "I am Allah, the Lord of the Worlds." (Al-Qasas, 28: 29-30). [2]


Then Allah, praise to Him, wanted to show Moussa proofs that he is in the presence of Allah. He told him to throw his stick (staff) on the ground, which when he did turned into a huge snake, shaking like a Jinn. Moussa was scared and ran away but Allah, praise to Him, called him to come back, assuring him that he was safe. In another proof, Allah told Moussa to put his hand in his pocket then to get it out. When he did, he saw the color of his hand turning white, without sickness or harm. These two proofs assured Moussa, pbuh, that he was in the presence of Allah.


Then, Allah gave Moussa his mission and mandate. He told him to go to the Pharaoh and ask him to let the oppressed Israelites leave Egypt. Moussa replied that he maybe killed if they knew about him. As he was assured of God's protection, he asked that his brother Haroon (Aaron) be part of the mission, as support for him, and as he was more eloquent than himself. Allah, praise to Him, agreed and promised protection for both of them, as stated in Al-Qasas, 28: 29-35, Ta Ha, 20: 9-98, Al-Shu'ara, 26: 10-17, Al-Naml, 27: 7-14.



ٰ ﴿٢٩﴾ ٰ ﴿٣٠﴾  ۖ ٰ  ۚ ٰ  ۖ ﴿٣١﴾  ۖ ٰ  ۚ ﴿٣٢﴾ ﴿٣٣﴾  ۖ ﴿٣٤﴾  ۚ ﴿٣٥ ( 28: 29-35).  


And when Moses had completed the term and was traveling with his family, he perceived from the direction of the mount a fire. He said to his family, "Stay here; I have perceived a fire. Perhaps I will bring you from there (some) information or burning wood from the fire that you may warm yourselves." (29) But when he came to it, he was called from the right side of the valley in a blessed spot - from the tree, "O Moussa, indeed I am Allah, Lord of the worlds." (30) And (he was told), "Throw down your staff." But when he saw it writhing as if it was a snake, he turned in flight and did not return. (Allah said), "O Moussa, approach and fear not. You are of the secure. (31) Insert your hand into the opening of your garment; it will come out white, without disease. And draw in your arm close to you (as prevention) from fear, for those are two proofs from your Lord to Pharaoh and his establishment. Indeed, they have been a people (defiantly) disobedient." (32) He said, "My Lord, I killed from among them someone, and I fear they will kill me. (33) And my brother Haroon (Aaron) is more eloquent than me in tongue, so send him with me as support, verifying me. I fear that they will deny me." (34) (Allah) said, "We will strengthen your arm through your brother and grant you both supremacy so they will not reach you. (It will be) through Our signs; you both and those who follow you will be the winners (predominant)." (35) (Al-Qasas, 28: 29-35).


ٰ ٰ ﴿١٠﴾  ۚ ﴿١١﴾ ﴿١٢﴾ ٰ

﴿١٣﴾ ﴿١٤﴾  ۖ  ۖ ﴿١٥﴾ ﴿١٦﴾ ﴿١٧ ( 26: 10-17).


And (mention) when your Lord called Moses, (saying), "Go to the wrongdoing people - (10) The people of Pharaoh. Will they not fear Allah?" (11) He said, "My Lord, I fear that they will deny me (12) And that my breast will tighten and my tongue will not be fluent, so send for Aaron. (13) And they have upon me a (claim due to) sin, so I fear that they will kill me." (14) (Allah) said, "No. Go both of you with Our signs; indeed, We are with you, listening. (15) Go to Pharaoh and say, 'We are the messengers of the Lord of the worlds, (16) "Send with us the Children of Israel." (17) (Al-Shu'ara, 26: 10-17). 


ٰ ﴿٧﴾ ﴿٨﴾ ٰ ﴿٩﴾  ۚ ٰ  ۚ ٰ ﴿١٠﴾ ﴿١١﴾  ۖ ٰ  ۚ ﴿١٢﴾ ٰ ﴿١٣﴾  ۚ ﴿١٤ ( 27: 7-14).


(Mention) when Moussa said to his family, "I have perceived a fire. I will bring you from there (some) information or will bring you a burning torch that you may warm yourselves." (7) When he came to it, he was called, "Blessed is whoever is at the fire and whoever is around it. And exalted is Allah, Lord of the worlds. (8) O Moussa, it is I, Allah, the Exalted in Might, the Wise." (9) And "Throw down your staff." But when he saw it writhing (shaking) as if it were a Jinn, he turned in flight and did not return. (Allah said) "O Moussa, fear not. In My presence, the messengers do not fear. (10) Except, he who wrongs, then substitutes good after evil, I am Forgiving and Merciful. (11) And put your hand into your pocket; it will come out white, without disease. (These are) among the nine signs (you will take) to Pharaoh and his people. Indeed, they have been a people (defiantly) disobedient." (12) But when there came to them Our visible signs, they said, "This is obvious magic." (13) And they rejected them, while their (inner) selves were convinced thereof, out of injustice and haughtiness. So, see how the end of the corrupters was. (14) (Al-Naml, 27: 7-14). 


﴿٤٢﴾ ٰ ٰ ﴿٤٣﴾ ٰ ﴿٤٤﴾ ٰ ﴿٤٥﴾  ۖ ٰ ﴿٤٦﴾  ۖ  ۖ   ٰ ٰ ﴿٤٧﴾ ٰ ٰ ﴿٤٨ ( 20: 42-48). 


Go, you and your brother, with My signs and do not slacken in My remembrance. (42) Go, both of you, to Pharaoh. He has transgressed. (43) And speak to him with gentle speech that perhaps he may be reminded or fear (Allah)." (44) They said, "Our Lord, we are afraid that he will hasten (punishment) against us or that he will transgress." (45) (Allah) said, "Fear not. I am with you both; I hear and I see. (46) So, go to him and say, 'Indeed, we are messengers of your Lord. S0, send with us the Children of Israel and do not torment them. We have come to you with a sign from your Lord. And peace will be upon he who follows the guidance. (47) It has been revealed to us that the punishment will be upon whoever denies (God's message) and turns away (from it).'" (48) (Ta Ha, 20: 42-48).  



5. Encounter With the Pharaoh and the Demand to Free the Children of Israel


Moussa and Haroon (Moses and Aaron) met with the Pharaoh and his close circle, and demanded that the Children of Israel be let free to leave. The Pharaoh, his prime minister, Haman, and Qaroon (Karen), who was an Israelite but the wealthiest in Egypt, did not agree to Moussa's demand and accused him of being a liar and a magician. They even replied with the resumption of the killing of the sons of those who believed in Allah with Moussa. The Pharaoh announced his intention to Kill Moussa to see if his Lord, Allah, would protect him or not. However, there was one man, a relative of the Pharaoh, who was a believer hiding his faith, who stopped that from happening. He argued trying to dissuade the Pharaoh from killing Moussa, saying that he maybe telling the truth as a Messenger of Allah. If he is killed or his demand is not met, then God's punishment would come, as was the case with the nations who defied Allah and His Messengers before, as narrated in verses 23-33 of Surat Ghafir (Chapter 40) of the Holy Quran.



ٰ ﴿٢٣﴾ ٰ ﴿٢٤﴾  ۚ ﴿٢٥﴾ ٰ  ۖ ﴿٢٦﴾ ٰ ﴿٢٧﴾  ۖ  ۖ  ۖ ﴿٢٨﴾  ۚ ٰ ﴿٢٩﴾ ﴿٣٠﴾  ۚ ﴿٣١﴾ ﴿٣٢﴾  ۗ ﴿٣٣ ( 40: 23-33). 


And We did certainly send Moses with Our signs and a clear authority (23) To Pharaoh, Haman and Qaroon; but they said, "(He is) a magician and a liar." (24) And when he brought them the truth from Us, they said, "Kill the sons of those who have believed with him and keep their women alive." But the plan of the disbelievers is not except in error. (25) And Pharaoh said, "Let me kill Moussa and let him call upon his Lord. Indeed, I fear that he will change your religion or that he will cause corruption in the land." (26) Moussa said (in reply), "I have sought refuge in my Lord and your Lord from every arrogant one who does not believe in the Day of Reckoning." (27) And a believing man from the family of Pharaoh who concealed his faith said, "Do you kill a man (merely) because he says, 'My Lord is Allah' while he has brought you clear proofs from your Lord? And if he is lying, then upon him is (the consequence of) his lie; but if he is truthful, there will strike you some of what he promises you. Indeed, Allah does not guide one who is a transgressor and a liar. (28) O my people, sovereignty is yours today, [your being] dominant in the land. But who would protect us from the punishment of Allah if it came to us?" Pharaoh said, "I do not show you except what I see, and I do not guide you except to the way of right conduct." (29) And he who believed said, "O my people, I fear for you (a fate) like the day of the (wrong-doing) parties - (30) Like what happened to the people of Noo'h, 'Aad, Thamud, and those after them. And Allah wants no injustice for (His) worshippers. (31) And O my people, I fear for you the Day of Calling - (32) The Day you will turn your backs fleeing; there is not for you from Allah any protector. And whoever Allah leaves astray - there is not for him any guide. (33) (Ghafir, 40: 23-33).




The Pharaoh reminded Moussa of the favors he showered him with as he brought him up in the palace. Then, he threatened to imprison him if he would persist in worshipping another god than him. Moussa replied by showing him and his audience the two proofs about the God's support for him in his mission. He threw his stick (staff) on the ground, which turned into a huge snake. He also got his hand out of his pocket, which turned white. The Pharaoh replied that this was just magic and his advisers suggested to have a contest between Moussa and Egypt's magicians to refute his claims about being a Messenger of Allah, as mentioned in verses 18-40 of Surat Al-Shu'ara (Chapter 26) of the Holy Quran.



﴿١٨﴾ ﴿١٩﴾ ﴿٢٠﴾ ﴿٢١﴾ ﴿٢٢﴾ ﴿٢٣﴾  ۖ ﴿٢٤﴾ ﴿٢٥﴾ ﴿٢٦﴾ ﴿٢٧﴾  ۖ ﴿٢٨﴾ ٰ ﴿٢٩﴾ ﴿٣٠﴾ ﴿٣١﴾ ٰ ﴿٣٢﴾ ﴿٣٣﴾ ٰ ﴿٣٤﴾ ﴿٣٥﴾ ﴿٣٦﴾ ﴿٣٧﴾ ﴿٣٨﴾ ﴿٣٩﴾ ﴿٤٠﴾  ( 26: 18-40). 


(Pharaoh) said, "Did we not raise you among us as a child, and you remained among us for years of your life? (18) And you did your deed which you did, and you were of the ungrateful." (19) (Moussa) said, "I did it, then, while I was of those astray. (20) So I fled from you when I feared you. Then, my Lord granted me wisdom and made me (one) of the messengers. (21) And is this a favor of which you remind me - that you have enslaved the Children of Israel?" (22) Pharaoh said, "And what is the Lord of the worlds?" (23) (Moussa) said, "(He is) the Lord of the heavens and the Earth and that in between them, if you (want to be) certain." (24) (Pharaoh) said to those around him, "Do you not hear?" (25) (Moses) said, "Your Lord and the Lord of your first forefathers." (26) (Pharaoh) said, "Indeed, your 'messenger' who has been sent to you is mad." (27) (Moussa) said, "Lord of the east and the west and that between them, if you were to reason." (28) (Pharaoh) said, "If you take a god other than me, I will place you among those imprisoned." (29) (Moussa) said, "Even if I bring you a manifest proof (sigh)?" (30) (Pharaoh) said, "Then bring it, if you are of the truthful." (31) So, (Moussa) threw his staff, and it (became) a manifest serpent. (32) And he drew out his hand (from his pocket), thereupon it was white for the observers. (33) (Pharaoh) said to the eminent ones around him, "This is a learned (skilled) magician. (34) He wants to drive you out of your land by his magic, so what do you advise?" (35) They said, "Postpone (the matter with) him and his brother and send among the cities gatherers (36) Who will bring you every learned (skilled) magician." (37) So, the magicians were assembled for the appointment of a well-known day. (38) And it was said to the people, "Will you congregate (39) That we might follow the magicians if they are the predominant?" (40) (Al-Shu'ara, 26: 18-39).




The Egyptian magicians threw their sticks and ropes on the ground, which turned into what looks like moving snakes. Moussa, then, threw his stick on the ground. It turned into a huge snake, which devoured all of their made-believe snakes. At that moment, the Egyptian magicians realized that Moussa was a real Messenger of God, not a magician, like them. Therefore, they made prostration to Allah, proclaiming their faith in Him. However, this sign from God was not enough for the Pharaoh to believe. He ordered the magicians to be tortured and crucified, accusing them of being followers of Moussa. This scene is described in several Suras (Chapters) of the Holy Quran, such as in Ta Ha, 20: 49-76; Al-A'araf, 7: 113-126; Younus, 10: 79-89; and Al-Shu'ara, 26: 41-51.



﴿٤١﴾ ﴿٤٢﴾ ٰ ﴿٤٣﴾ ﴿٤٤﴾ ٰ ٰ ﴿٤٥﴾ ﴿٤٦﴾ ﴿٤٧﴾ ٰ ﴿٤٨﴾  ۖ  ۚ ﴿٤٩﴾  ۖ ٰ ﴿٥٠﴾ ﴿٥١﴾  ( 26: 40-51).


 And when the magicians arrived, they said to Pharaoh, "Is there for us a reward if we are the predominant?" (41) He said, "Yes, and you will then be of those near (to me)." (42) Moussa said to them, "Throw whatever you will throw." (43) So, they threw their ropes and their staffs and said, "By the might of Pharaoh, it is we who are predominant." (44) Then, Moussa threw his staff, and it devoured what they falsified. (45) So, the magicians fell down in prostration (to Allah). (46) They said, "We have believed in the Lord of the worlds, (47) The Lord of Moussa and Haroon." (48) (Pharaoh) said, "You believed (Moussa) before I gave you permission. He is your leader, who has taught magic, but you are going to know. I will cut off your hands and your feet on opposite sides, and I will crucify you all." (49) They said, "No harm. To our Lord we will return. (50) We aspire that our Lord will forgive us our sins because we were the first of the believers." (51) (Al-Shu'ara, 26: 40-51).



6. Pharaoh's Refusal and God's Nine Signs to Convince him 


Despite the fact that Moussa, pbuh, won the contest against the Egyptian magicians, the Pharaoh and his inner circle still persisted in their arrogance. The Pharaoh continued demanding that people worship him as their only god. The above-mentioned two miracles (the staff and the color change of his hand), intended as proofs or signs (26: 32-33) were not enough for him to believe that Moussa was really a Messenger of Allah, as mentioned in Surat Younus (10: 75-78), Surat Al-A'araf (7: 127-129), and Surat Al-Zukhruf (43: 46-56). Then, Allah, praise to Him, gave Moussa seven more miracles to persuade the Pharaoh to let the Children of Israeli leave but in vain. These were years of draught and shortage of fruits (7: 130), as well as the flood, locusts, lice, frogs, and blood (7: 133). [3]




ٰ ٰ ﴿٤٦﴾ ﴿٤٧﴾  ۖ ﴿٤٨﴾ ﴿٤٩﴾ ﴿٥٠﴾ ٰ ٰ  ۖ ﴿٥١﴾ ٰ ﴿٥٢﴾ ﴿٥٣﴾  ( 43: 46-53). 


And certainly did We send Moses with Our signs to Pharaoh and his establishment, and he said, "Indeed, I am the messenger of the Lord of the worlds." (46) But when he brought them Our signs, at once they laughed at them. (47) And We showed them not a sign except that it was greater than its sister, and We seized them with affliction that perhaps they might return [to faith]. (48) And they said [to Moses], "O magician, invoke for us your Lord by what He has promised you. Indeed, we will be guided." (49) But when We removed from them the affliction, at once they broke their word. (50) And Pharaoh called out among his people; he said, "O my people, does not the kingdom of Egypt belong to me; and these rivers flowing beneath me; then do you not see? (51) Or am I [not] better than this one who is insignificant and hardly makes himself clear? (52) Then why have there not been placed upon him bracelets of gold or come with him the angels in conjunction?" (53) (Al-Zukhruf, 43: 46-53).  


Because the Pharaoh asked for more proofs, Allah, praise to Him, supported Moussa's demand with seven more signs, which did affect the Pharaoh this time. These were years of famine, shortage in fruits, the flood, locusts, lice, frogs, and blood, as mentioned in verses 101-102 of Surat Al-Issra (Chapter 17) and verses 130-133 of Surat Al-A'araf (Chapter 7) of the Holy Quran.   



ٰ  ۖ ٰ ﴿١٠١﴾ ٰ ﴿١٠٢ ( 17: 101-102).



And We had given Moussa nine evident signs. So, ask the Children of Israel (about) when he came to them and Pharaoh said to him, "I think, O Moussa, that you are affected by magic." (101) (Moussa) said, "You have already known that none has sent down these (signs) except the Lord of the heavens and the earth as evidence, and I think, O Pharaoh, that you are destroyed" (102) (Al-Issra, 17: 101-102).



﴿١٣٠  ٰ ۖ ٰ  ۗ ٰ ﴿١٣١﴾ ﴿١٣٢﴾ ﴿١٣٣﴾  ۖ ﴿١٣٤﴾ ٰ ﴿١٣٥ ( 7: 130-135). 



And We certainly seized the people of Pharaoh with years of famine and a deficiency in fruits that perhaps they would be reminded. (130) But when good came to them, they said, "This is ours (by right)." And if a bad (condition) struck them, they saw an evil omen in Moussa and those with him. Unquestionably, their fortune is with Allah, but most of them do not know. (131) And they said, "No matter what sign you bring us with which to bewitch us, we will not be believers in you." (132) So We sent upon them the flood, locusts, lice, frogs, and blood as distinct signs, but they were arrogant and were a criminal people (133) (Al-A'araf, 7: 130-133). 




The Pharaoh and his inner circle pleaded with Moussa to ask Allah to stop the punishment He inflected on them and they promised to end the suffering of the Children of Israel by letting them go with him. However, they broke their promise after Allah, praise to Him, had stopped punishing them, as mentioned in verses 134-135 of Surat Al-A'araf (Chapter 7) of the Holy Quran.  


 ۖ ﴿١٣٤﴾ ٰ ﴿١٣٥ ( 7: 134-135).  


And when the punishment descended upon them, they said, "O Moussa, invoke for us your Lord, by what He has promised you. If you stop the punishment (inflicted) on us, we will believe you, and we will send with you the Children of Israel." (134) But when We stopped the punishment (inflicted) on them, until a term which they were to reach, then they broke their word (135) (Al-A'araf, 7: 134-135). 



7. The Exodus, the Miracle of Splitting the Sea, Death of the Pharaoh and Preserving his Body, Glad Tiding to the Oppressed that they Inherit the Land  [4]


As the Pharaoh broke his promise to let the Children of Israel go, Allah, praise to Him, inspired Moussa to lead them out of Egypt. The Pharaoh still followed them with his soldiers and they were close to them near the sea. At that point, Allah, praise to Him, inspired Moussa to hit the sea with his stick (staff). When he did, the sea was split into two great mountains of water. The Israelites passed safely to the other shore but the Pharaoh still followed them with his soldiers. Then, the sea path was closed and the Pharaoh and his soldiers drowned. At that moment, the Pharaoh said that he believed in Allah, the God of the Children of Israel. But Allah answered him that his body will be rescued from the sea, in order to be a sign to the people after him.


Thus, Allah, praise to Him, is telling us the story of the Pharaoh and the Children of Israel, so we know that He may punish the tyrants and may enable His oppressed worshippers to become the heirs who inherit the land, as stated in verses 77-79 of Surat Ta Ha (Chapter 20), verses 90-92 of Surat Younus (Chapter 10), verses 61-66 of Surat Al-Shu'ara (Chapter 26), and verses 136-137 of Surat Al-A'araf (Chapter 7) of the Holy Quran.



ٰ ٰ ٰ ﴿٧٧﴾ ﴿٧٨﴾ ٰ ﴿٧٩﴾  ( 19: 77-79).


And We had inspired to Moussa, "Travel by night with My worshippers and strike for them a dry path through the sea; you will not fear being overtaken (by Pharaoh) nor be afraid (of drowning)." (77) So, Pharaoh pursued them with his soldiers, and there covered them from the sea that which covered them, (78) And Pharaoh led his people astray and did not guide (them). (79) (Ta Ha, 20: 77-79). 



 ۖ ٰ ٰ ﴿٩٠﴾ ﴿٩١﴾  ۚ ﴿٩٢ ( 10: 90-92). 



And We took the Children of Israel across the sea, and Pharaoh and his soldiers pursued them in tyranny and enmity until, when drowning overtook him, he said, "I believe that there is no deity except that in whom the Children of Israel believe, and I am of the Muslims." (90) Now? And you had disobeyed (God) before and were of the corrupters? (91) So, today We will save you in body, that you may be a sign to those who succeed you. And many among the people are heedless of Our signs (92) (Younus, 10: 75-92). 



ٰ ﴿٦١﴾  ۖ ﴿٦٢﴾ ٰ ٰ  ۖ ﴿٦٣﴾ ﴿٦٤﴾ ٰ ﴿٦٥﴾ ﴿٦٦  ( 26: 61-66).



And when the two companies saw one another, the companions of Moussa said, "We are to be overtaken!" (61) (Moses) said, "No! With me is my Lord; He will guide me." (62) Then, We inspired to Moussa, "Strike the sea with your staff," and it parted, and each portion was like a great towering mountain. (63) And We advanced thereto the pursuers. (64) And We saved Moussa and those with him, all together. (65) Then We drowned the others. (66) (Al-Shu'ara, 26: 61-66).



﴿١٣٦﴾  ۖ ٰ ٰ  ۖ ﴿١٣٧ ( 7: 136-137).


So, We took retribution from them, and We drowned them in the sea because they denied Our signs and were heedless of them. (136) And We caused the people who had been oppressed to inherit the eastern regions of the land and the western ones, which We had blessed. And the good word of your Lord was fulfilled for the Children of Israel because of what they had patiently endured. And We destroyed that which Pharaoh and his people were producing and what they had been building (137) (Al-A'araf, 7: 136-137).  



8. Inability to Enter the Holy Land from the Coastal Region and Being Lost in Sinai for Forty Years


As the Children of Israel were safe after the death of the Pharaoh, they were instructed by Moussa to enter the Holy Land. However, they refused to obey him because they were afraid of the mighty people who were living there. They told him that they would not enter it until these mighty people leave it. Furthermore, they asked him to go together with his Lord to fight them, and that they would stay there waiting for that to happen. Allah, praise to Him, replied that they would be prohibited from entering it for forty years, as mentioned in verses 20-26 of Surat Al-Maeda (Chapter 5) of the Holy Quran. 



ٰ ﴿٢٠﴾ ٰ ﴿٢١﴾ ٰ ٰ ﴿٢٢﴾  ۚ ﴿٢٣﴾ ٰ  ۖ ﴿٢٤﴾  ۖ ﴿٢٥﴾  ۛ  ۛ  ۚ ﴿٢٦ ( 5: 20-26).



And (mention, O Muhammad), when Moussa said to his people, "O my people, remember the favor of Allah upon you when He appointed among you prophets and made you possessors and gave you that which He had not given anyone among the worlds. (20)


O my people, enter the Holy Land, which Allah has assigned to you, and do not turn back (from fighting in God's cause) and (thus) become losers." (21)


They said, "O Moussa, within it, there is a mighty (strong) people, and we will never enter it until they leave it. So, if they leave it, then we will enter." (22)


Two men from those who feared (to disobey God), upon whom Allah had bestowed favor, said, "Enter upon them through the gate, for when you have entered it, you will be predominant. And rely upon Allah, if you are believers." (23)


They said, "O Moussa, we will not enter it, ever, as long as they are in it. So go, you and your Lord, and fight (them). We are sitting right here." (24)


(Moussa) said, "My Lord, I do not possess except myself and my brother. So, part us from the (defiantly) disobedient people." (25)


(Allah) said, "Then, it is forbidden to them for forty years, (during which) they will wander throughout the land. So, (O Moussa) do not grieve over the (defiantly) disobedient people." (26) (Al-Ma-ida, 5: 20-26).



9. God's Favors to the Israelites in Sinai, Water, Cloud Shade, Manna and Quails, Sabbath Transgressors, and the Yellow Cow


 In the following verses from Al-Baqara and Al-A'araf Suras (Chapters) of the Holy Quran, Allah, praise to Him, reminds the children of Israel of His favors to them, which were met with their disobedience, more demands, and transgression! He reminded them that He rescued them from the Pharaoh's humiliation and punishment, saved them by splitting the sea for them and drowning the Pharaoh, providing them with water, shading them with clouds in the hot desert, providing them with manna and quails, and granting them a Covenant with Him. However, they demanded to have the same vegetables they used to eat in Egypt. Further, some of them transgressed on the Sabbath while they were prohibited to do so, as mentioned in verse 160 of Surat Al-A'araf (Chapter 7) and verses 47-66 of Surat Al-Baqara (Chapter 2) of the Holy Quran.  



﴿٤٧﴾ ﴿٤٨﴾   ۚ ٰ ﴿٤٩﴾ ﴿٥٠ ( 2 : 47-50).


O Children of Israel, remember My favor that I have bestowed upon you and that I preferred you over the worlds. (47) And fear a Day when no soul will suffice for another soul at all, nor will intercession be accepted from it, nor will compensation be taken from it, nor will they be aided. (48) And (recall) when We saved you from the people of Pharaoh, who afflicted you with the worst torment, slaughtering your (newborn) sons and keeping your females alive. And in that was a great trial from your Lord. (49) And (recall) when We parted the sea for you, and saved you and drowned the people of Pharaoh, while you were looking on. (50) (Al-Baqara, 2: 47-50). 


 ۚ ٰ ٰ  ۖ  ۖ  ۚ ٰ ۖ  ۚ ٰ ﴿١٦٠ ( 7: 160). 


And We divided them into twelve descendant tribes (as distinct) nations. And We inspired to Moussa when his people implored him for water, "Strike with your staff the stone," and there gushed forth from it twelve springs. Every people knew its watering place. And We shaded them with clouds and sent down upon them manna and quails, (saying), "Eat from the good things with which We have provided you." And they wronged Us not, but they were (only) wronging themselves. (160) (Al-A'araf, 7: 160).   


ٰ ٰ  ۖ ٰ  ۚ  ۗ  ۗ ٰ  ۗ ٰ ﴿٦١ ( 2 : 60-61).


And (recall) when you said, "O Moussa, we can never endure one (kind of) food. So, call upon your Lord to bring forth for us from the earth its green herbs, its cucumbers, its garlic, its lentils, and its onions." (Moussa) said, "Would you exchange what is better for what is less? Go down (back) to Egypt and you will have what you have asked (for)." And they were covered with humiliation and poverty and returned with anger from Allah (upon them). That was because they (repeatedly) disbelieved in the signs of Allah and killed the prophets, without right. That was because they disobeyed and were (habitually) transgressing. (61) (Al-Baqara, 2: 60-61). 


﴿٦٣﴾ ٰ ۖ ﴿٦٤﴾ ﴿٦٥﴾ ﴿٦٦ ( 2 : 63-66). 


And (recall) when We took your covenant, (O Children of Israel, to abide by the Torah) and We raised over you the Toor (mountain), (saying), "Take what We have given you with determination, and remember what is in it, that perhaps you may become righteous." (63) Then you turned away after that. And if not for the favor of Allah upon you and His mercy, you would have been among the losers. (64) And you had already known about those who transgressed among you concerning the Sabbath, and We said to them, "Be despised (regressed) monkeys." (65) And We made it a deterrent punishment for those who were present and those who succeeded (them) and a lesson for those who fear Allah. (66) (Al-Baqara, 2: 63-66).  



In another favor, Allah, praise to Him, guided them to identify the perpetrator in a murder case, which they could not solve. He inspired Moussa, pbuh, to tell them to slaughter a cow and invite everybody to eat from its meat, then to hit the dead body with part of its meat or bone. When they did, the dead man spoke and told them about the name of the murderer. However, they gave Moussa a hard time by asking him many questions about which cow is the one God wants them to slaughter. If they were obedient, they could have slaughtered any cow but by asking too many questions about it, they just made the job harder on themselves, than it should be (Al-Baqara, 2: 67-74).



ٰ  ۖ  ۖ ﴿٦٧﴾  ۚ ٰ ۖ ﴿٦٨﴾  ۚ ﴿٦٩﴾ ﴿٧٠﴾  ۚ  ۚ ﴿٧١﴾  ۖ ﴿٧٢﴾  ۚ ٰ ٰ ﴿٧٣﴾ ٰ  ۚ  ۚ  ۚ  ۗ ﴿٧٤﴾  ( 2 : 67-74).


And (recall) when Moussa said to his people, "Allah commands you to slaughter a cow." They said, "Do you take us in ridicule?" He said, "I seek refuge in Allah from being among the ignorant." (67) They said, "Call upon your Lord to make clear to us what it is." (Moussa) said, "(Allah) says, 'It is a cow which is neither old nor virgin, but median between that,' so do what you are commanded." (68) They said, "Call upon your Lord to show us what is her color." He said, "He says, 'It is a yellow cow, bright in color - pleasing to the observers.' " (69) They said, "Call upon your Lord to make clear to us what it is. (All) cows look alike to us. And if Allah wills, we will be guided." (70) He said, "He says, 'It is a cow neither trained to plow the earth nor to irrigate the field, one free from fault with no spot upon her.' " They said, "Now you have come with the truth." So, they slaughtered her, but they could hardly do it. (71) And (recall) when you killed a man and disputed over it, but Allah was to bring out that which you were concealing. (72) So, We said, "Strike the slain man with part of it." Thus does Allah bring the dead to life, and He shows you His signs that you might reason. (73) Then, your hearts became hardened after that, being like stones or even harder. For indeed, there are stones from which rivers burst forth, and there are some of them that split open and water comes out, and there are some of them that fall down for fear of Allah. And Allah is not unaware of what you do. (74)  (Al-Baqara, 2: 67-74).



10. The Tablets and the Calf Worship Ordeal


Allah, praise to Him, called Moussa to teach him for forty nights. Moussa asked his Lord to see Him physically but Allah told him that he cannot see Him. He said to him that He would show Himself to the mountain and that if the mountain stays intact, then Moussa can see His Lord. But the mountain crumbled down in destruction and Moussa fell unconscious, as mentioned in verses 138-143 of Surat Al-A'araf (Chapter 7) of the Holy Quran. 



ٰ ٰ  ۚ ٰ  ۚ ﴿١٣٨﴾ ٰ ﴿١٣٩﴾ ٰ ﴿١٤٠﴾  ۖ  ۚ ٰ ﴿١٤١﴾ ٰ  ۚ ٰ ﴿١٤٢﴾ ٰ  ۚ ٰ  ۚ ٰ ٰ  ۚ ﴿١٤٣ ( 7: 138-143). 


And We took the Children of Israel across the sea; then they came upon a people intent in devotion to (some) idols of theirs. They said, "O Moussa, make for us a god just as they have gods." He said, "Indeed, you are a people behaving ignorantly. (138) Those (idol worshippers) - it is destroyed that in which they are (engaged), and whatever they were doing is worthless." (139) He said, "Is it other than Allah I should desire for you as a god while He has preferred you over the worlds?" (140) And (recall, O Children of Israe)], when We saved you from the people of Pharaoh, (who were) afflicting you with the worst torment - killing your sons and keeping your women alive. And in that was a great trial from your Lord. (141) And We made an appointment with Moussa for thirty nights and perfected them by (the addition of) ten; so the term of his Lord was completed as forty nights. And Moussa said to his brother Haroon, "Take my place among my people, do right (by them), and do not follow the way of the corrupters." (142) And when Moussa arrived at Our appointed time, and his Lord spoke to him, he said, "My Lord, show me (Yourself) that I may look at You." (Allah) said, "You will not see Me, but look at the mountain; if it should remain in its place, then you will see Me." But when his Lord appeared to the mountain, He rendered it level, and Moussa fell unconscious. And when he awoke, he said, "Exalted are You! I have repented to You, and I am the first of the believers" (143) (Al-A'araf, 7: 138-143).   




Allah, praise to Him, still assured Moussa, pbuh, that He favored him by speaking to him and by giving him written tablets, which included preaching and guidance for his people. But when Moussa returned with the Tablets, only after being absent for forty nights, he was shocked that the Israelites were worshipping a calf made of gold. Then, Moussa told them to repent to their Creator, and kill themselves as punishment for what they did. However, Allah, praise to Him, accepted their repentance and forgave them, as mentioned in verses 144-156 of Surat Al-A'araf (Chapter 7), verses 52-54 of Surat Al-Baqara (Chapter 2), and verses 83-98 of Surat Taha (Chapter 20) of the Holy Quran. 



ٰ ﴿١٤٤﴾  ۚ ﴿١٤٥﴾  ۚ ٰ ﴿١٤٦﴾  ۚ ﴿١٤٧﴾ ٰ  ۚ  ۘ ﴿١٤٨﴾ ﴿١٤٩ ( 7: 144-149).


(Allah) said, "O Moussa, I have chosen you over the people with My messages and My words (by speaking to you). So, take what I have given you and be among the grateful." (144) And We wrote for him on the tablets preaching and details for all things. So, "Take them with determination and order your people to take the best of it. I will show you the home of the (defiantly) disobedient." (145) I will turn away from My signs those who are arrogant upon the earth without right; and if they should see every sign, they will not believe in it. And if they see the right path, they will not adopt it as a way; but if they see the wrong path, they will adopt it as a way. That is because they have denied Our signs and they were heedless of them. (146) Those who denied Our signs and the meeting of the Hereafter - their deeds will be worthless. Are they going to be recompensed except for what they used to do? (147) And the people of Moussa made, after (his departure), from their ornaments a calf - an image having a lowing sound. Did they not see that it could neither speak to them nor guide them to a way? They took it (for worship), and they were self-oppressors (wrongdoers). (148) And when regret overcame them and they saw that they had gone astray, they said, "If our Lord does not have mercy upon us and forgive us, we will surely be among the losers" (149) (Al-A'araf, 7: 144-149).   


ٰ ﴿٥١﴾ ٰ ﴿٥٢﴾ ﴿٥٣﴾ ٰ ٰ ٰ  ۚ ﴿٥٤﴾ ٰ ٰ ﴿٥٥﴾ ﴿٥٦﴾ ٰ ۖ  ۖ ٰ ﴿٥٧ ( 2 : 51-57).


And We made an appointment with Moussa for forty nights. Then, you took the calf (for worship) after him, while you were wrongdoers. (51) Then, We forgave you after that so perhaps you would be grateful. (52) And We gave Moussa the Scripture and criterion (to differentiate right from wrong) that perhaps you would be guided. (53) And Moussa said to his people, "O my people, you have oppressed (wronged) yourselves by your taking of the calf (for worship). So repent to your Creator and kill yourselves. That is better for you in the sight of your Creator." Then He accepted your repentance. Indeed, He is the Accepting of repentance, the Merciful. (54) And you said, "O Moussa, we will never believe you until we see Allah outright." So, the thunderbolt took you (you died) while you were looking on. (55) Then, We resurrected you after your death that perhaps you would be grateful. (56) And We shaded you with clouds and sent down to you manna and quails, (saying), "Eat from the good things with which We have provided you." And they did not wrong Us. Rather, they were (only) wronging themselves. (57) (Al-Baqara, 2: 51-57). 


ٰ ٰ  ۖ  ۖ  ۚ ﴿١٥٠﴾  ۖ ﴿١٥١﴾  ۚ ٰ ﴿١٥٢﴾ ﴿١٥٣﴾  ۖ ﴿١٥٤﴾ ٰ  ۖ  ۖ  ۖ  ۖ  ۖ ﴿١٥٥﴾ ٰ  ۚ  ۖ  ۚ ﴿١٥٦﴾  ( 7: 150-156). 


And when Moussa returned to his people, angry and grieved, he said, "How wretched is that by which you have replaced me after (my departure). Were you impatient over the matter of your Lord?" And he threw down the tablets and seized his brother by (the hair of) his head, pulling him toward him. (Haroon) said, "O son of my mother, the people oppressed me and were about to kill me. So, do not let the enemies rejoice over me and do not place me among the wrongdoing people." (150) (Moussa) said, "My Lord, forgive me and my brother and admit us into Your mercy, for You are the most merciful of the merciful." (151) Indeed, those who took the (golden) calf (for worship) will obtain anger from their Lord and humiliation in the lower life (of this world), and thus do We recompense the perpetrators (of falsehood). (152) But those who committed misdeeds then repented after them and believed - your Lord, thereafter, is Forgiving and Merciful. (153) And when the anger subsided in Moussa, he took up the tablets; and in their inscription was guidance and mercy for those who are fearful of their Lord. (154) And Moussa chose from his people seventy men for Our appointment. And when the earthquake seized them, he said, "My Lord, if You had willed, You could have destroyed them and me before. Would You destroy us for what the foolish among us have done? This is not but Your trial by which You send astray whom You will and guide whom You will. You are our Patron (Protector). So, forgive us and have mercy upon us; and You are the Best of Forgivers. (155) And decree for us in this world (that which is) good and (also) in the Hereafter. We have turned back to You." (Allah) said, "My punishment - I inflict it on whom I will, but My mercy encompasses all things." So, I will decree it for those who are righteous and give zakah, and those who believe in Our verses - (156) (Al-A'araf, 7: 150-156). 


ٰ ﴿٨٣﴾ ٰ ٰ ﴿٨٤﴾ ﴿٨٥﴾ ٰ ٰ  ۚ  ۚ ﴿٨٦﴾ ٰ ٰ ﴿٨٧﴾ ٰ ٰ ٰ ٰ ﴿٨٨﴾ ﴿٨٩﴾  ۖ ٰ ﴿٩٠﴾ ٰ ٰ ﴿٩١﴾ ﴿٩٢﴾  ۖ ﴿٩٣﴾  ۖ ﴿٩٤﴾ ﴿٩٥﴾ ٰ ﴿٩٦﴾  ۖ  ۖ ٰ ٰ  ۖ ﴿٩٧﴾ ٰ ٰ  ۚ ﴿٩٨ ( 20: 83-98). 


(Allah) said, "And what made you hasten from your people, O Moussa?" (83) He said, "They are close upon my tracks, and I hastened to You, my Lord, that You be pleased." (84) (Allah) said, "But We have tried your people after you (departed), and the Samiri has led them astray." (85) So, Moussa returned to his people, angry and grieved. He said, "O my people, did your Lord not make you a good promise? Was the time (of its fulfillment) too long for you? Or, did you wish that wrath from your Lord descend upon you? So, you broke your promise (of obedience) to me?" (86) They said, "We did not break our promise to you by our will, but we were made to carry burdens from the ornaments of the (Egyptian) people. So, we threw them (into the fire), and thus did the Samiri throw." (87) And he extracted for them (the statue of) a calf, which had a lowing sound, and they said, "This is your god and the god of Moussa, but he forgot." (88) Did they not see that it could not return to them any speech and that it did not possess for them any harm or benefit? (89) And Aaron had already told them before [the return of Moses], "O my people, you are only being tested by it, and indeed, your Lord is the Most Merciful, so follow me and obey my order." (90) They said, "We will never cease being devoted to the calf until Moses returns to us." (91) [Moses] said, "O Aaron, what prevented you, when you saw them going astray, (92) From following me? Then have you disobeyed my order?" (93) [Aaron] said, "O son of my mother, do not seize [me] by my beard or by my head. Indeed, I feared that you would say, 'You caused division among the Children of Israel, and you did not observe [or await] my word.' " (94) [Moses] said, "And what is your case, O Samiri?" (95) He said, "I saw what they did not see, so I took a handful [of dust] from the track of the messenger and threw it, and thus did my soul entice me." (96) [Moses] said, "Then go. And indeed, it is [decreed] for you in [this] life to say, 'No contact.' And indeed, you have an appointment [in the Hereafter] you will not fail to keep. And look at your 'god' to which you remained devoted. We will surely burn it and blow it into the sea with a blast. (97) Your god is only Allah, except for whom there is no deity. He has encompassed all things in knowledge." (98) (Ta Ha, 20: 80-98).



11. Moussa's Crash Course of Learning from Al-Khadr


Allah, praise to Him, wanted to teach Moussa, pbuh, a lesson that despite the fact that he was His Messenger, there were other worshippers of Allah on Earth who were more knowledgeable than him. He led him to meet with Al-Khadhir (The Green One), peace be to him, whose name is not mentioned in the Holy Quran verses, but given to us in a 'Hadith by the Messenger of Allah, Muhammed, pbbuh. [5]  


Al-Khadhir told Moussa up front that he may not be able to accompany him for long, to learn from him, because he may not be patient towards Al-Khadhir's actions. So, he agreed to allow Moussa to accompany him on condition that he should be patient. He should not comment on or ask about Al-Khadhir's actions until he would explain them to him. However, Moussa, pbuh, could not stay patient and asked him three times to explain his actions, which was a violation of the agreement. The three actions were making a hole in a ship to drown it on the shore before sailing, killing a young boy without an apparent reason, and building a fence for free in an inhospitable village.  At that moment, Al-Khadhir told him that he could not accompany him anymore but explained to him the reasons for doing the three actions. The morale of the story is that we may get sad or upset about things which may happen to us or around us because we don't know if there's any good thing coming out of them. This story is related in verses 60-82 of Surat Al-Kahf (Chapter 18) of the Holy Quran, as follows: 


ٰ ٰ ﴿٦٠﴾ ﴿٦١﴾ ٰ ﴿٦٢﴾  ۚ ﴿٦٣﴾ ٰ  ۚ ٰ ﴿٦٤﴾ ﴿٦٥﴾ ٰ ٰ ﴿٦٦﴾ ﴿٦٧﴾ ٰ ﴿٦٨﴾ ﴿٦٩﴾ ٰ ﴿٧٠﴾  ( 18: 60-70). 


And (mention) when Moussa said to his servant, "I will not cease (traveling) until I reach the junction of the two seas or continue for a long period." (60) But when they reached the junction between them, they forgot their fish, and it took its course into the sea, slipping away. (61) So, when they had passed beyond it, (Moussa) said to his servant, "Bring us our meal. We have certainly suffered in this, our journey, (much) fatigue." (62) He said, "Did you see when we retired to the rock? I forgot the fish (there). And none made me forget it except the Shaytan (Satan) - that I should mention it. And it took its course into the sea amazingly". (63) (Moussa) said, "That is what we were seeking." So they returned, following their footprints. (64) And they found a worshipper from among Our worshippers to whom we had given mercy from us and had taught him from Us a (certain) knowledge. (65) Moussa said to him, "May I follow you on (the condition) that you teach me from what you have been taught of sound judgment?" (66) He said, "You will never be able to have patience with me. (67) And how can you have patience for what you do not encompass in knowledge?" (68) (Moussa) said, "If Allah wills, you will find me patient, and I will not disobey you in (any) order." (69) He said, "Then if you follow me, do not ask me about anything until I mention (an explanation) about it to you." (70) (Al-Kahf, 18: 60-70).


ٰ  ۖ ﴿٧١﴾ ﴿٧٢﴾ ﴿٧٣﴾ ٰ ﴿٧٤ ﴿٧٥﴾  ۖ ﴿٧٦﴾ ٰ  ۖ ﴿٧٧﴾ ٰ  ۚ ﴿٧٨﴾  ( 18: 71-78).   


So, they set out, until they had embarked on the ship, (Al-Khadhir) tore it open (made a hole in it). (Moses) said, "Have you torn it open to drown its people? You have certainly done a grave thing." (71) (Al-Khadhir) said, "Did I not say that you would never be able to have patience with me?" (72) (Moussa) said, "Do not blame me (pardon me) for what I forgot and do not add more difficulty to my matter." (73) So they set out, until they met a boy, (Al-Khadhir) killed him. (Moussa) said, "Have you killed a pure soul for other than (having killed) a soul? You have certainly done a deplorable thing." (74) (Al-Khadhir) said, "Did I not tell you that you would never be able to have patience with me?" (75) (Moussa) said, "If I should ask you about anything after this, then do not keep me as a companion. You have (then) obtained an excuse from me." (76) So they set out, until they came to the people of a village, they asked its people for food, but they refused to offer them hospitality. And they found therein a wall about to collapse. So, (Al-Khadhir) restored it. (Moussa) said, "If you wished, you could have taken a payment for it." (77) (Al-Khadhir) said, "This is a separation (parting) between me and you. I will inform you of the interpretation of that about which you could not have patience. (78) (Al-Kahf, 18: 71-78).


﴿٧٩﴾ ﴿٨٠﴾ ﴿٨١﴾  ۚ  ۚ ٰ ﴿٨٢﴾  ( 18: 79-82). 


As for the ship, it belonged to poor people working at sea. So I intended to cause defect in it, as there was after them a king, who seized every ship by force. (79) And as for the boy, his parents were believers, and we feared that he would overburden them by transgression and disbelief. (80) So, we intended that their Lord would substitute for them one better than him, in purity and nearer to mercy. (81) And as for the wall, it belonged to two orphan boys in the city, and there was beneath it a treasure for them, and their father had been righteous. So, your Lord wanted that they reach maturity and extract their treasure, as a mercy from your Lord, and I did not do it of my own accord. That is the interpretation of that about which you could not have patience." (82) (Al-Kahf, 18: 79-82).





Moussa, peace be upon him (pbuh), is one of the five major Islamic Messengers of Allah (the others are Noo'h (Noah), Ibrahim (Abraham), 'Eissa (Jesus), and Muhammed, peace be upon all of them). His story of leading the Israelites out of Egypt, where they were persecuted, is intended to be a lesson to humanity that Allah, praise to Him, punishes the tyrants and helps the oppressed. The story also shows that despite the countless favors Allah, praise to Him, showered the Israelites with, they still were ungrateful, disobedient, and even turned to the worship of a golden calf.


The Holy Quran focuses on the lessons to be learned, that's why the several stories about Moussa and the Israelites were not mentioned in one chapter or in a chronological order. This author has attempted to present the verses which tell the stories in some kind of a sequence or chronological order for the the sole purpose of education about Moussa and the Israelites, from an Islamic perspective. 


Thus, this author has attempted to tell the story of Moussa (pbuh) in a kind of sequence, starting from his birth, to his adoption and education in the Pharaoh's palace, then his running away from Egypt, settling down in Madyan, speaking with Allah and receiving his mission mandate, his encounter with the Pharaoh and demanding him to free the Children of Israel, the Pharaoh's refusal and God's signs to convince him, the Exodus and the miracle of splitting the sea, death of the Pharaoh by drowning and preserving his body as a lesson to humanity, the inability of the Israelites to enter the Holy Land from the coastal Palestinian region, wandering in Sinai for forty years, the Tablets and the calf ordeal, and finally Moussa's crash course of learning from Al-Khadhr. 


This author hopes that presenting all these verses from the Holy Quran about Moussa, pbuh, and the Israelites in one article will be helpful for readers in general as well as for imams and researchers, who look for an Islamic source about the topic, in particular. 







[1]  The Holy Quran teaches humanity through the life, experiences, and missions of the Messengers of Allah, particularly the five Messengers with Power (Ulul 'Azm). Nooh (Noah) was mentioned by name 43 times in the Holy Quran, Ibrahim (Abraham) was mentioned by name 69 times, Moussa (Moses) was mentioned by name 136 times, 'Eissa (Jesus) was mentioned by name 25 times, and Muhammed was mentioned by name 4 times as Muhammed and once as Ahmed, peace and blessings of Allah be upon all of them.


These statistics were taken from the Holy Quran Index in Arabic by Muhammed Fu-ad Abdul Baqi. Cairo: Dar Al-Fikr. 1406 (1986). The Arabic Title of the index is: Al-Mujam Al-Mufahras Li Alfadh Al-Qur-an Al-Kareem.


The Holy Quran can also be searched by Arabic words in many internet websites, such as


 [2] In verses 42: 51-52, Allah, praise to Him, tells us that he speaks to humans, including His Messengers, in three ways: by inspiration, from behind a barrier, or by sending an angel messenger.  Verses 28: 29-35 show that Allah, praise to Him, spoke to Moussa, pbbuh, through a barrier, which was the fire in the tree, in this case.



ٰ ... ﴿٥٢﴾  ( 42: 51-52). 


And it is not for any human being that Allah should speak to except by inspiration (revelation), or from behind a barrier, or that He sends a messenger to inspire (reveal), by His permission, what He wills. Indeed, He is Most High and Wise. (51)


And thus We have inspired to you a spirit (the Angel Jibril) of Our command (52) (Al-Shoura, 42: 51-52).


[3] Moussa (Moses), pbuh, was supported by many miracles from Allah, praise to Him, before returning to Egypt, while in Egypt after his return, and after the Exodus. Islamic scholars extensively mentioned and discussed various miracles of the three categories.


Concerning the miracles given to him, for the purpose of persuading the Pharaoh to let the Children of Israel leave Egypt, the Holy Quran tells us of nine specific miracles (17: 101). These are the stick (staff) and the color change of his hand (26: 32-33), years of draught and shortage of fruits (7: 130), as well as the flood, locusts, lice, frogs, and blood (7: 133). This was the list of the nine miracles, mentioned by Ibn Abbas, Mujahid, Iqrima, and Al-Shi'bi, according to Ibn Katheer, in his interpretation of Verse 17: 101.  



[4] The Holy Quran is God's Message of Guidance to Humanity. Therefore, it focuses on teaching humans about what's good for them during their life on Earth, which would help them have an everlasting life in Paradise in the Hereafter. Thus, the story of the Israelites is intended to be a lesson to humanity about God's countless favors to humans, some of whom may be ungrateful and disobedient.


The Holy Quran does not mention the details about the Exodus of the Israelites, which sea they passed through, or which part of the Holy Land of Palestine they were instructed by Moussa, pbuh, to enter. However, from the verses together with the geographical facts, one can understand that the sea they crossed might have been the Gulf of Suez. The part of the Holy Land they couldn't enter might have been the coastal Palestinian region, starting at Rafa'h, south of present Gaza Strip. Then, the Israelites were lost in the Sinai desert for forty years. Finally, they reached the area east of the River Jordan, where Moussa, pbuh, died. It was his deputy, Yosha' Bin Noon, who led the Israelites westward towards the Holy Land of Palestine, through Aree'ha (Jericho).


[5] The 'Hadith about the story of Moussa and Al-Khadhir, peace be to both of them, is as follows:



" "  ( ).



The Companion, Ibn Abbas, may Allah be pleased with him, and his father, said that he heard the Messenger of Allah, pbbuh, saying:


"While Moussa was with a group of people from the Children of Israel, a man came to him and said: 'Do you know if there is anybody who is more knowledgeable than you?' Moussa said: 'No.' Then, Allah, praise to Him, inspired to Moussa: 'Yes, Our worshipper Khadhir (is more knowledgeable than you). Then, Moussa asked about the way to him. Allah made the fish as a sign, saying to him: 'If you lose your fish, go back and you will find him (there)" (This 'Hadith was narrated in Sa'hi'h Al-Bukhari). 





About the Author and the Book:


* The author of this book has a Ph.D. in Sociology and a Masters degree in Cultural Anthropology. He was born in Gaza, Palestine in 1369 Hijriya (1950) but he has been living in the United States since 1986.

The authentic Quran Arabic text is used as a reference for the translation of the meanings of the Quran verses, particularly from


The works of the three renowned Islamic scholars Al-Tabari, Al-Qurtubi, and Ibn Katheer, have been used throughout the chapters of this book, as these are the most credited interpretations of the Holy Quran, for their use of 'Hadith, companions' interpretations, and their thorough knowledge of the Arabic language.  

   ( 61: 8).  


They want to extinguish the light of Allah with their mouths, but Allah will perfect His light, although the disbelievers dislike it (Al-Saff, 61: 8). 




Opinions expressed in various sections are the sole responsibility of their authors and they may not represent Al-Jazeerah's.