The Fig and the Olive, Mount Sinai, and the City of Security (Makkah)

“By the fig, and the olive, By Mount Sinai, And by this city of security (Makkah). Verily, We created man of the best stature (mould), Then We reduced him to the lowest of the low, Save those who believe (in Islamic Monotheism) and do righteous deeds, then they shall have a reward without end (Paradise). Then what (or who) causes you (O disbelievers) to deny the Recompense (i.e. Day of Resurrection)? Is not Allah the Best of judges?” [Surah At-Tin, 95:1-8]

Here, Allah Subhanahu ta’ala swears by holy and honored places, places that He Subhanahu ta’ala chose for revelation to come down to His Prophets and Messengers. The first of those places is Ash-Sham (Syria and surrounding regions) in general, and Jerusalem in particular, for figs and olives grow in those lands. It is as if Allah Subhanahu ta’ala is swearing by the message that was revealed to ‘Isa (alayhis salam).

Mount Sinai is in the area of Sinai. It is as if Allah Subhanahu ta’ala is swearing by the message that was revealed to Musa (alayhis salam) on Mount Sinai; ‘Sinin’ in the above mentioned verse literally means, ‘blessed’. And ‘this city of security’ refers to Makkah Al-Mukarramah, which is where Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu alayhi wassallam) received Revelation.

Therefore, it is as if the Verses are oaths taken by the divine messages that were revealed to ‘Isa (alayhis salam), Musa (alayhis salam), and Muhammad (Sallallahu alayhi wassallam). This points to a spirit of brotherhood between the Prophets (alayhis salam), for though the laws they came with differed, their religion was one and the same – the religion of Islam.

“Truly, the religion with Allah is Islam.” [Surah ali-‘Imran, 3:19]


– At-Tafisr Al-Munir; 30/301
– Safwatut-Tafasir; 3/577

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