Surah Yusuf Benefits, Importance and Background

Surah Yusuf

Surah Yusuf is the 12th Surah of the Quran. Therefore, it holds very high importance in Islamic history. Let’s see its benefits, why it is important, and its historical background.

Period of Revelation

Surah Yusuf, which consists of 111 verses, was revealed during the last stage of the residence of the Rasulullah Sallallahu Alayhi Wa Sallam in Makkah before emigrating to Medina. During this period, the Quraish considered choosing between killing, exiling, or imprisoning the Prophet.

Historical Background

This 12th Surah of the Holy Quran was revealed when the Jews instigated the unbelievers to test the Messenger of Allah by asking him about the reason behind the Israelites’ departure to Egypt. At that time, no Arabs knew about the history of the Israelites; therefore, they thought that the Prophet would not be able to give a satisfactory answer; thus, his Prophethood would be questioned.

However, contrary to their expectations, Allah revealed the whole story of Prophet Yusuf (Joseph), which allowed Prophet SAWW to read it to them on the spot.

The Prophet’s answer not only put the Quraish in a very awkward position as their devious scheme failed but also served as a warning to those who had acted as maliciously as Yusuf’s brothers in this case.

“As you are behaving towards this Prophet, exactly in the same way the brothers of Prophet Yusuf behaved to him. Therefore, you should expect to meet with the same end.”

Lessons From This Surah

It is clear that by applying the story of Prophet Yusuf (A.S) to the conflict between the Prophet Muhammad PBUH and the Quraish, the Holy Quran has made a bold and clear prophecy about the events that were fulfilled in the succeeding ten years.

About two years after the revelation of Surah Yusuf to answer the questions of the Quraish, who acted as cruelly as the brothers of the Prophet Yusuf, which is by planning to kill the Prophet SAWW and forcing him to emigrate from Makkah to Al-Madinah, where he obtained power similar to that the Prophet Joseph got in Egypt.

In the end, the Quraish again had to humble themselves before him to ask for forgiveness, just like the brothers of Prophet Yusuf who begged,

Surah Yusuf Verse 92

At the request of forgiveness from his brother, the Prophet Yusuf, who, despite having full power to take revenge on them, chose to generously forgive them by saying:

“Today no punishment shall be inflicted on you. May Allah forgive you. He is the greatest of all those who forgive.”

The same story of mercy was repeated when after the conquest of Makkah, the defeated Quraysh stood meekly before the Prophet Muhammad. The Prophet, who also had full power to avenge every cruel treatment they did to him, on the contrary only asked them, “What treatment do you expect from me?”. They replied: “You are a generous brother and the son of a generous brother.”

At this, the Prophet Muhammad generously forgave them by saying: “I give the same answer to your request that Yusuf gave to his brothers: “Today, no punishment shall be inflicted on you: you are forgiven.”

  1. The faith of Prophet Ibrahim (Abraham), Ishaq (Ishak), Yaqoob (Yakub), and Yusuf (Joseph), may Allah’s peace be upon them all, was the same as Prophet Muhammad SAWW. Therefore, they invited people with the same message as the message conveyed by Prophet Muhammad PBUH.
  2. This Surah compares the character formed by Islam (based on the worship of Allah and accountability in the hereafter) to the character formed by disbelief and ignorance (based on the worship of false gods and the material world). Then the addressees are asked to decide for themselves between these two characters.
  3. In addition, this Surah was revealed to achieve two other goals, namely:
    • This Surah provides evidence of the Prophethood of the Prophet Muhammad SAWw and that his knowledge was not only based on hearsay but was gained through revelation.
    • The story of Prophet Yusuf against ill-treatment in this Surah warns the Quraysh of their conflict with the Prophet, which will end in his victory over them. As stated in verse 7: “Indeed in the story of the Prophet Yusuf and his brothers there are signs for those who ask questions from among the Quraish.”

Important Points

This Surah contains several important points, including the following:

  1. All Rasools were human beings.
  2. Yusuf’s prayer for life and death as a Muslim.
  3. It is explained that, whatever Allah wills, He fulfills it, and no one can defeat His plans or prevent them from happening.
  4. Believers are advised to stay within limits set by the divine Law while pursuing their goals because success and failure are entirely in the hands of Allah.
  5. Believers are advised to put their efforts toward the truth and trust Allah. This will help them face their opponents with confidence and courage.
  6. I only complain of my sufferings and my grief to Allah.
  7. Verily, every hardship is a relief.
  8. Verily, he who has Taqwa dan is patient; then,  Allah will not waste the reward of those who do good.
  9. He is the Most Merciful among those who show mercy!
  10. Only He is All-Knowing, the Wise.
  11. And you do not ask them for it any payment. It is not a reminder to the world.

Surah Yusuf FAQs:

How many ayat (verses) in surah yusuf?

There are 111 Ayats (verses) in Surah Yusuf.

Which para is surah yusuf?

Para 13.

What comes after surah yusuf?

Surah Ar-Ra’d also known as “The Thunder.”

how many ruku in surah yusuf?

There are 12 rukus in this Surah.

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