Does Allah practice deceit and guile?
Many known anti-Islamic polemicists like the shameless Sam Shamoun say that according to Qur’an Allah is a master deceiver who practices deceit and guile. They refer to the Qur’anic verses in the words ‘makr’, ‘kayd’ and ‘khid’’ have been used.
In the following lines we discuss the true meanings of all the words and unveil the lie of these islamophobes.
1- The word ‘makr’ used for Allah:
“And they planned and Allah (also) planned (yamkurullah), and Allah is the best of planners.” (Qur’an 8:30)
“What! do they then feel secure from Allah's plan (makr-ullah)? But none feels secure from Allah's plan (makr-ullah)? except the people who shall perish.” (Qur’an 7:99)
“And they planned a plan, and We planned a plan (makarna makran) while they perceived not.” (Qur’an 27:50)
2- Meaning of ‘makr’ according to Muslim lexicographers:
Raghib Isfahani, the well known classical Qur’anic lexicographer writes about the word ‘makr’ that it is used to denote a plan and strategy and has two connotation, the good and the evil. (Mufradaat Al-Qur'an 1/471)
3- Meaning of ‘makr’ according to Edward Lane’s lexicon:
These cunning missionaries refer to Lane’s lexicon but then hide part of what he wrote. While they quote him to have written that makr means ‘deceit, guile or circumvention’ they forget to mention that Edward Lane also writes;
And he further elaborates;
See Edward William Lane’s Arabic English Lexicon Part 7 p.256
4- ‘Makr’ itself does not have the connotation of evil in it:
It becomes evident from the above testimonies that the Arabic word ‘makr’ means a plan and strategy which may be good or evil. This is clarified beyond all doubt from its following Qur’anic usage;
“(In) behaving proudly in the land and in planning evil (makr as-sayy); and the evil plans (makr as-sayy) shall not beset any save the authors of it. Then should they wait for aught except the way of the former people?” (Qur’an 35:43)
Here Qur’an says ‘makr as-sayy’ which means ‘evil plan’. And it is the word ‘al-sayy’ which means ‘evil’. Now the point to note is that if the word ‘makr’ by itself has the connotation of evil in it then why use the word ‘evil’ with it separately? Those who know even the modicum of linguistics understand well that this example is a categorical proof that ‘makr’ intrinsically does not give the nuance of evil.
5- The word ‘makr’ and Holy Prophet’s (PBUH) prayer:
Continuing with the lies against Islam these people then quote a prayer of the Holy Prophet (PBUH) in which he prayed to Allah to plan for him and not against him using the word ‘makr’ for planning. They prayer is recorded both in Jami’ Tirmidhi and Tafsir Qurtubi. Wording in Jami’ Tirmidhi is;
“My Lord, help me but do not help against me. Give me victory but not give victory over me. Plan for me and do not plan against me.” (Jami’ Tirmidhi, Book of Supplications, Hadith 3562. Also see Tafsir Qurtubi 4/99)
Considering the above details about the meaning of ‘makr’ and the rest of the wording of the prayers the meaning becomes clear. The Holy Prophet (PBUH) as a humble servant of Allah prayed to Him to seek His help and thus taught his followers the right conduct.
The Prophet (PBUH) prayed to be helped and not helped against, to be granted victory and not granted victory over and to be planned for and not planned against. Just as help (a’anah) and being given victory (nusrah) are not evil by themselves neither is planning. It is the purpose and aim which makes something evil. And planning against wrong-doers is indeed good and that is what Allah does. And by this prayer all that Prophet (PBUH) intended was to beseech Allah to keep him guided to the straight path and thus to be saved from His planning against him.
The meaning is simply that one should always remember that he is dependant on Allah the disposition of all the affairs of life.
6- The word ‘kayd’ used for Allah:
“I give them respite. Surely My plan (kaydi) is firm.” (Qur'an 7:183 & 68:45)
“They are devising plans, and I Am devising plans (akidu kayda).” (Qur'an 86:15-16)
7- Meaning of ‘kayd’ according to Muslim lexicographers:
Raghib Isfahani in his monumental work Mufradaat Al-Qur'an writes against the word ‘kayd’ that it refers to using secret means and has both praiseworthy and condemnable connotation based on the ends aimed to be met. (Mufradaat Al-Qur'an 1/443)
8- Meaning of ‘kayd’ according to Edward Lane’s lexicon:
One again the Liars refer to Lane’s lexicon but spill out the half truth which is as good as a lie. E.W. Lane writes about the word ‘kayd’;
And further elaborating the meaning of the word when used for Allah Lane writes;
See Edward William Lane’s Arabic English Lexicon Part 7 p.167
So when kayd is used with reference to Allah it merely refers to His planning the affairs with wisdom which is indeed true for each of His deeds.
9- The word khid’a used for Allah:
Khid’a is another word used for Allah which the insane souls yell about and say that it means Allah practices deceit and guile. Here are the verses in which the word is used for the Almighty.
“Surely, the hypocrites (try to) deceive Allah while He is the One who leaves them in deception (khadi’uhum).” (Qur’an 4:142)
10- Meaning of khid’a according to Muslim lexicographers:
Once again let me quote Raghib Isfahani to clarify the true meaning of this word;
“He made him to resign, or relinquish, the object he had in view, by pretending to him something contrary to what he intended.” (Mufradaat Al-Qur'an 1/143)
11- Meaning of khid’a according to Edward Lane’s lexicon:
Infact Lane also quotes the same in his lexicon part 2 p.345. And before it he says that the basic meaning of Khid’a is to hide and conceal.
12- All the three word are in essence same:
All three words, makr, kayd and khid’a are all in essence same and when used for Allah signify His getting the evil mongers unaware of the outcome of their deeds after they have stubbornly rejected the Truth.
One thing is common in the usage of all these words with reference to Allah that they signify His planning for the good and against the evil i.e. punishment of the criminals. And as to the question about His taking them unaware without their reckoning it, the following two verses are enough for the understanding of the unprejudiced souls. Allah says in the Qur'an;
"If anyone contends with the Messenger even after guidance has been plainly conveyed to him, and follows a path other than that becoming to men of Faith, We shall leave him in the path he has chosen, and land him in Hell,- what an evil refuge!" (Qur’an 4:115)
“We (too) shall turn to (confusion) their hearts and their eyes, even as they refused to believe in this in the first instance: We shall leave them in their trespasses, to wander in distraction.” (Qur'an 6:110)
So the words makr, kayd and khid’a of Allah for the transgressors is His leaving them to what they choose for themselves and let them find their destruction while all this period they vainly think they have outplayed the Divine forces.
Indeed Allah knows the best!