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62. "Verily those who believed (in the Prophet of Islam), and those of Jews and Christians and Sabians, whoever believed (truly) in Allah and the Last Day, and worked righteousness -for them is their reward with their Lord, and no fear shall be upon them, nor shall they grieve. "
A General Principle for Salvation
The Qur'an, here, points to a general and common principle when it proclaims that that which is worthy is' truth' and 'reality '. With Allah,only ' true Faith ' and ' good deeds ' are accepted.
"Verily, those who believed (in the Prophet of Islam), and those of Jews and Christians and Sabians, whoever believed (truly) in Allah and the Last Day, and worked righteousness -for them is their reward with their Lord ..."
Therefore, they will have no fear in the future or any grief for their past:
"...and no fear shall be upon them, nor shall they grieve."
This verse, with nearly the same form, has occurred in Sura Al-Maidah No. 5. Verse 69: and with a further variation on the same subject inSura A1-Hajj, No. 22. Verse 17.
A careful study over the verses cited after this verse in Sura Al-Ma'idah, makes it clear that the Jews and Christians boasted that their religions were better than other religions. They imagined that all of Heaven would be for them alone, exclusively.
That very pride, perhaps, was seen in the manner of some Muslims, too. The current verse denotes that superficial faith, especially with the lack of doing good deeds, whether it proceeds from Muslims or Jews, Christians and Sabians, or the followers of any other religion, is worthless. Faith in Allah and the Last Day of Judgment is noted worthy by Allah when it is true, pure, and sincere, and accompanied with righteous deeds. Only this agendum deserves rewards and causes peace, security, and salvation for a believer.
Who are the Sabians?
There are a variety of opinions as to who the Sabians are. Here you are introduced to a few of them which are usually referred to. For example, the description cited in: 'An Arabic -English Lexicon, Part 4,' p. 1640, by Edward William Lame is, in brief, as follows:
The term / Sabi'un / in the Kur'an is said to mean: 'Those who depart from one religion to another (The Sabians,) said to worship the stars secretly, and openly to profess themselves to belong to the Christians: They are called / as-sabi'ah / and / as-sabi'un/ : and they assert that they are of the religion of Sabi the son of Sheyth (or Sheth) the son of Adam: their appellation may also be pronounced / as-sabiyun / or the Sabi'un are a certain class of the people who possess revealed scripture: or a people whose religion resembles that of the Christians, except that their Qiblah is towards the place where blows the (south, or southerly, wind called) Jannb... or according to some, their Qiblah is the Ka'bah: and they assert that they are of the religion of Noah. It is said that they are thus called in relation to Sabi the son of Lamak (or Lamech), the brother of Noah. It is said that they are worshippers of angels: and it said that they are the worshippers of the stars: and that their appellation is Arabic; from / saba / he departed from a religion '; or from / saba / he inclined because of their inclining from Truth to falsehood.
Another idea about 'Sabians', the appellation mentioned in the Holy Qur'an, is what the known scholar, Raqib, cites in his book, 'Mufradat '. He says: "They are a group of followers of Noah (a), and their name mentioned along with the names of Believers, Jews and Christians, is also an evidence that they have been a religious group of people, believing in one of the heavenly religions who believed in God and the Hereafter, too."
Some other commentators have said that the idea that some have called them pagans and star worshippers, or some others have considered them Zoroastrians, does not seem right, because Sabians believed that: first, the heavenly Holy Books were revealed to Adam (a) and then to Noah (a) and after him to Sam (a), then to Ram (a) and thereafter to Abraham (a), then to Moses (a) and after him to John (a) the son of Zachariah, all of which were sent rightfully and Divinely.
Who are the' People of the Book'?
The Qur'anic phrase / 'ahlul kitab / ' the People of the Book' has occurred in more than 30 different verses of the Qur'an where it mostly means both the Jews and the Christians or either of them.
The above mentioned Arabic-English Lexicon, part one, page 121 explains the phrase / 'ahlul-kitab / thus: ' (the people of the Scripture, or Bible; and) the readers, or reciters, of the Mosaic Law, and of the Gospel.'
Apparently, all the adherents of the prophets who had revealed Books, the clearest example of whom are Jews and Christians, may be called 'the People of the Book '. If so, we can also consider the Prophet's tradition when he was asked about the number of the Books Allahrevealed and he (s)replied: "One hundred and four books were revealed: ten books to Adam (a), fifty books to Shith, thirty books to Ukhnukh (Enoch) and he is the first one who wrote by pen, ten books to Abraham, the Turah to Moses, the Ingeel to Jesus, Zabur to David, and the Qur'an to Muhammad (the Prophet of Islam)."