In The Name of Allaah, The Most Merciful, The Bestower of Mercy.
We Will Not Abandon Our Way of Life Nor Cease Dealing With Our Wealth How We Want, Even If You Think We Are Wrong! – An Inheritance from the ancient deniers of the path of the Messengers
Allaah [The Exalted] said:
وَإِلَىٰ مَدۡيَنَ أَخَاهُمۡ شُعَيۡبً۬اۚ قَالَ يَـٰقَوۡمِ ٱعۡبُدُواْ ٱللَّهَ مَا لَڪُم مِّنۡ إِلَـٰهٍ غَيۡرُهُ ۥۖ وَلَا تَنقُصُواْ ٱلۡمِڪۡيَالَ وَٱلۡمِيزَانَۚ إِنِّىٓ أَرَٮٰڪُم بِخَيۡرٍ۬ وَإِنِّىٓ أَخَافُ عَلَيۡڪُمۡ عَذَابَ يَوۡمٍ۬ مُّحِيطٍ۬ (٨٤) وَيَـٰقَوۡمِ أَوۡفُواْ ٱلۡمِڪۡيَالَ وَٱلۡمِيزَانَ بِٱلۡقِسۡطِۖ وَلَا تَبۡخَسُواْ ٱلنَّاسَ أَشۡيَآءَهُمۡ وَلَا تَعۡثَوۡاْ فِى ٱلۡأَرۡضِ مُفۡسِدِينَ (٨٥) بَقِيَّتُ ٱللَّهِ خَيۡرٌ۬ لَّكُمۡ إِن ڪُنتُم مُّؤۡمِنِينَۚ وَمَآ أَنَا۟ عَلَيۡكُم بِحَفِيظٍ۬ (٨٦) قَالُواْ يَـٰشُعَيۡبُ أَصَلَوٰتُكَ تَأۡمُرُكَ أَن نَّتۡرُكَ مَا يَعۡبُدُ ءَابَآؤُنَآ أَوۡ أَن نَّفۡعَلَ فِىٓ أَمۡوَٲلِنَا مَا نَشَـٰٓؤُاْۖ إِنَّكَ لَأَنتَ ٱلۡحَلِيمُ ٱلرَّشِيدُ (٨٧) قَالَ يَـٰقَوۡمِ أَرَءَيۡتُمۡ إِن كُنتُ عَلَىٰ بَيِّنَةٍ۬ مِّن رَّبِّى وَرَزَقَنِى مِنۡهُ رِزۡقًا حَسَنً۬اۚ وَمَآ أُرِيدُ أَنۡ أُخَالِفَكُمۡ إِلَىٰ مَآ أَنۡهَٮٰڪُمۡ عَنۡهُۚ إِنۡ أُرِيدُ إِلَّا ٱلۡإِصۡلَـٰحَ مَا ٱسۡتَطَعۡتُۚ وَمَا تَوۡفِيقِىٓ إِلَّا بِٱللَّهِۚ عَلَيۡهِ تَوَكَّلۡتُ وَإِلَيۡهِ أُنِيبُ (٨٨) وَيَـٰقَوۡمِ لَا يَجۡرِمَنَّكُمۡ شِقَاقِىٓ أَن يُصِيبَڪُم مِّثۡلُ مَآ أَصَابَ قَوۡمَ نُوحٍ أَوۡ قَوۡمَ هُودٍ أَوۡ قَوۡمَ صَـٰلِحٍ۬ۚ وَمَا قَوۡمُ لُوطٍ۬ مِّنڪُم بِبَعِيدٍ۬ (٨٩) وَٱسۡتَغۡفِرُواْ رَبَّڪُمۡ ثُمَّ تُوبُوٓاْ إِلَيۡهِۚ إِنَّ رَبِّى رَحِيمٌ۬ وَدُودٌ۬ (٩٠) قَالُواْ يَـٰشُعَيۡبُ مَا نَفۡقَهُ كَثِيرً۬ا مِّمَّا تَقُولُ وَإِنَّا لَنَرَٮٰكَ فِينَا ضَعِيفً۬اۖ وَلَوۡلَا رَهۡطُكَ لَرَجَمۡنَـٰكَۖ وَمَآ أَنتَ عَلَيۡنَا بِعَزِيزٍ۬ (٩١) قَالَ يَـٰقَوۡمِ أَرَهۡطِىٓ أَعَزُّ عَلَيۡڪُم مِّنَ ٱللَّهِ وَٱتَّخَذۡتُمُوهُ وَرَآءَكُمۡ ظِهۡرِيًّاۖ إِنَّ رَبِّى بِمَا تَعۡمَلُونَ مُحِيطٌ۬ (٩٢) وَيَـٰقَوۡمِ ٱعۡمَلُواْ عَلَىٰ مَكَانَتِڪُمۡ إِنِّى عَـٰمِلٌ۬ۖ سَوۡفَ تَعۡلَمُونَ مَن يَأۡتِيهِ عَذَابٌ۬ يُخۡزِيهِ وَمَنۡ هُوَ كَـٰذِبٌ۬ۖ وَٱرۡتَقِبُوٓاْ إِنِّى مَعَڪُمۡ رَقِيبٌ۬ (٩٣) وَلَمَّا جَآءَ أَمۡرُنَا نَجَّيۡنَا شُعَيۡبً۬ا وَٱلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ مَعَهُ ۥ بِرَحۡمَةٍ۬ مِّنَّا وَأَخَذَتِ ٱلَّذِينَ ظَلَمُواْ ٱلصَّيۡحَةُ فَأَصۡبَحُواْ فِى دِيَـٰرِهِمۡ جَـٰثِمِينَ (٩٤) كَأَن لَّمۡ يَغۡنَوۡاْ فِيہَآۗ أَلَا بُعۡدً۬ا لِّمَدۡيَنَ كَمَا بَعِدَتۡ ثَمُودُ (٩٥)
And to the Madyan (Midian) people (We sent) their brother Shu’aib. He said: “O my people! Worship Allah, you have no other Ilah (God) but Him, and give not short measure or weight, I see you in prosperity; and verily I fear for you the torment of a Day encompassing. And O my people! Give full measure and weight in justice and reduce not the things that are due to the people, and do not commit mischief in the land, causing corruption. That which is left by Allah for you (after giving the rights of the people) is better for you, if you are believers. And I am not set over you as a guardian. [Hud. 84-86]
They said: “O Shu’aib! Does your Salat (prayer) (i.e. the prayers which you offer has spoiled your mind, so you) command that we leave off what our fathers used to worship, or that we leave off doing what we like with our property? Verily, you are the forbearer, right-minded!” (They said this sarcastically). [Hud 87]
Commentary on Aayah 87: They said this to mock at their Prophet and to making it known that there was no way they would accept his call. The meaning of their speech is that he nothing necessitates that you forbid us from what we want to do, except that you pray to Allah and worship Him; so if that is that is the case, is it incumbent on us to abandon what our forefathers used to worship due to a statement that has no evidence other than that it agrees with what you hold? So, how can we follow you and abandon the path of our forefathers, who possessed wisdom and sound reasoning? Likewise, your statement does not necessitate that “we leave off doing what we like with our property”, and that we give full weight and measure, and fulfil the rights that are obligated in that; rather we will not cease to do what we want because it is our wealth and you have no jurisdiction in that. So, due to this, they said mockinly, “Verily, you are the forbearer, right-minded!”- Meaning, “are you the one who is forbearing, a possessor of dignity and good character, and that neither is anything uttered by you except guidance towards upright conduct nor do you command except upright conduct,and you do not forbid except misguidance! The affair is not like that”. Their intent by way of this speech is that he is that his character is the opposite of these two characteristics, and that he is foolish and astray.
He said: “O my people! Tell me, if I have a clear evidence from my Lord, and He has given me a good sustenance from Himself (shall I corrupt it by mixing it with the unlawfully earned money). I wish not, in contradiction to you, to do that which I forbid you. I only desire reform so far as I am able, to the best of my power. And my guidance cannot come except from Allah, in Him I trust and unto Him I repent. [Hud 88]
Commentary on Aayah 88: [يَا قَوْمِ أَرَأَيْتُمْ إِن كُنتُ عَلَىٰ بَيِّنَةٍ مِّن رَّبِّي – O my people! Tell me, if I have a clear evidence from my Lord]- Meaning: I am upon certainty and tranquillity regarding the correctness of [the Message] I have brought. [وَرَزَقَنِي مِنْهُ رِزْقًا حَسَنًا – and He (Allaah) has given me a good sustenance from Himself]- Meaning: Allaah has given me various types of wealth. [وَمَا أُرِيدُ أَنْ أُخَالِفَكُمْ إِلَىٰ مَا أَنْهَاكُمْ عَنْهُ – I wish not, in contradiction to you, to do that which I forbid you]- Meaning: I do not wish to forbid you from [the evil practice of giving lower in weight and Measure by way of cheating in business transactions], yet I myself do the same and eventually you will charge me for doing so; rather I will not forbid you from an affair except that I will be the first person to hasten to abandon it; [إِنْ أُرِيدُ إِلَّا الْإِصْلَاحَ مَا اسْتَطَعْتُ – I only desire reform so far as I am able, to the best of my power]- Meaning: I do not have any other intentions [goals or aims] other than to rectify your state of affairs and the things that are of benefit to you. And because this statement of Shu’aib contains something which may indicate that he is attributing piety to himself, he repels it with the statement [وَمَا تَوْفِيقِي إِلَّا بِاللَّهِ – And my guidance cannot come except from Allah]-Meaning: The ability I have to do good and to refrain from evil is a bestowal from Allaah [The Most High] and it is neither due to my strength nor power; [عَلَيْهِ تَوَكَّلْتُ وَإِلَيْهِ أُنِيبُ – in Him I trust and unto Him I repent]- Meaning: I rely on Allaah in all my affairs and suffice myself with Him. I turn to Allaah in all the various acts of worship He has commanded me to draw close to Him by performing good deeds. By way of these two affairs- seeking aid and assistance from Allaah, turning to Him in repentance, complete submission and obedience- a person’s state of affairs becomes upright, just as Allaah [The Most High] said in another Aayah: [فَاعْبُدْهُ وَتَوَكَّلْ عَلَيْهِ– So worship Him (O Muhammad) and put your trust in Him].
And O my people! Let not my Shiqaq cause you to suffer the fate similar to that of the people of Nuh (Noah) or of Hud or of Salih (Saleh), and the people of Lout (Lot) are not far off from you! And ask forgiveness of your Lord and turn unto Him in repentance. Verily, my Lord is Most Merciful, Most Loving.” [Hud 89-90]
They said: “O Shu’aib! We do not understand much of what you say, and we see you a weak (man, it is said that he was a blind man) among us. Were it not for your family, we should certainly have stoned you and you are not powerful against us.” He said: “O my people! Is then my family of more weight with you than Allah? And you have cast Him away behind your backs. Verily, my Lord is surrounding all that you do. And O my people! Act according to your ability and way, and I am acting (on my way). You will come to know who it is on whom descends the torment that will cover him with ignominy, and who is a liar! And watch you! Verily, I too am watching with you.” And when Our Commandment came, We saved Shu’aib and those who believed with him by a Mercy from Us. And As-Saihah (torment – awful cry, etc.) seized the wrong-doers, and they lay (dead) prostrate in their homes. As if they had never lived there! So away with Madyan (Midian)! As away with Thamud! (All these nations were destroyed). [Hud 91-95]
[An Excerpt from Tafseer As-Sadi. Slightly paraphrased]