اَلْحَمْدُ لِلّهِ بِجَمِیعِ مَحَامِدِه کُلِّهَا عَلَی جَمِیعِ نِعَمِهِ کُلِّهَا… اَلْحَمْدُ لِلّهِ مالِکِ الْمُلْکِ مُجْرِی الْفُلْکِ مُسَخِّرِ الرِّیاحِ فالِقِ الاْصْباحِ دَیّانِ الدّینِ رَبِّ الْعَالَمینَ اَلْحَمْدُ لِلّهِ عَلی حِلْمِهِ بَعْدَ عِلمِهِ وَالْحَمْدُ لِلّهِ عَلی عَفْوِهِ بَعْدَ قُدْرَتِهِ وَالْحَمْدُ لِلّهِ عَلی طُولِ اَناتِهِ فی غَضَبِهِ وَهُوَ قادِرٌ عَلی ما یُریدُ
Praise is to God with all his praises, for all his blessings. . . Praise is to God, the owner of the property, the operator of the orbit, the bender of the wind, the glory of the morning, the religion of the beliefs, lord of the worlds; praise is to God for his dream after his knowledge and thank God for forgiveness after his power, and praise be to God for his long patience in his wrath and he is capable to do what he wills
و نشهد أن لا اله الا الله وحده لا شریک له، و أَنَّ محمداً عبده و رسوله ارسله بالهدی و دین الحق لیظهره علی الدین کله و لو کره المشرکون اوصیکم عبادالله و نفسی بتقوی الله و اتباع امره و نهیه، و اخوفکم من عقابه
And we bear witness that there is no god but God alone, without partner, and that Muhammad is his servant and messenger, he sent him with guidance and the religion of truth, that he might proclaim it over all religion, even if the polytheists hated it.
The prostration of angels to Adam
Following the story of the creation of Adam, father of the human being, the Qur’an says in surah of Baqhare:
وَإِذْ قُلْنَا لِلْمَلَائِكَةِ اسْجُدُوا لِآدَمَ فَسَجَدُوا إِلَّا إِبْلِيسَ أَبَى وَاسْتَكْبَرَ وَكَانَ مِنَ الْكَافِرِينَ؛
And when We said to the angels, ‘Prostrate before Adam,’ they prostrated, but not Iblis: he refused and acted arrogantly, and he was one of the faithless. (Baghare: 34)
This part of the story of the creation of man, God’s command and all angels obedience except Iblis, is being repeated in several verses of the holy Qur’an.
The truth of this issue: developmental or legislative
The question arises whether this divine command was legislative or creational? In other words, did a command really issued by God, and did the angels, except Iblis, obeyed it? Or such a thing did not happen, and this means that honoring and bowing to Adam is in the nature of angels and accompanies them?
Some interpreters of the holy Qur’an believe that this cannot be a legislative matter, because angels do not have the authority to obey or disobey, but holy Qur’an confirms that, “لَا يَعْصُونَ اللَّهَ مَا أَمَرَهُمْ وَيَفْعَلُونَ مَا يُؤْمَرُونَ” “who do not disobey whatever Allah commands them and carry out what they are commanded” (Tahrim: 6). Therefore, the matter of legislation is contrary to wisdom for them, and it cannot be imagined, nor can it be a creational matter, because the creational matter means something that is embedded in the essence, and this cannot be rebelled.
This group of commentators believes that this divine matter and the agreement of the angels and the opposition of Iblis was an allegorical and symbolic matter, so a legislative order was not really issued and it was not a reference to a creational matter. Rather, this verse and this divine matter are an allegory of the fact that the highest position in the world of possibilities is the position of humanity and to be the caliphate of God, to whom all the angels submit, and Iblis is the bandit of this position.
However, considering the repetition of this story in various verses and chapters of the holy Quran, it seems that it can not be considered as an allegorical and symbolic matter, but it must have been a reference to something real. What is wrong with considering this as a matter of creation for the angels, and as a matter of legislative for the devil and his followers? And it is more appropriate for us to abandon judging through the appearance of the verses and consider the fact that there was a divine command and a divine rule; also it is better not to attend denying the reality of the story and not to consider it allegorical and symbolic.
The pride and arrogance of Iblis
Iblis was both proud and arrogant against this divine command, due to ignorance. The holy Qur’an explains this devil’s pride towards man in other verses and says:
قَالَ مَا مَنَعَكَ أَلَّا تَسْجُدَ إِذْ أَمَرْتُكَ قَالَ أَنَا خَيْرٌ مِنْهُ خَلَقْتَنِي مِنْ نَارٍ وَخَلَقْتَهُ مِنْ طِينٍ
Said He, ‘What prevented you from prostrating, when I commanded you? ’‘I am better than him,’ he said. ‘You created me from fire and You created him from clay.’ (Araf: 12)
In the second verse of the surah of Baqhare, God considers the cause of Iblis’s opposition and disobedience to be his arrogance, and says: “فَسَجَدُوا إِلَّا إِبْلِيسَ أَبَى وَاسْتَكْبَرَ” “This is the Book, there is no doubt in it, a guidance to the Godwary”. His arrogance before God and disobedience to God’s command was under the pretext of his superiority over Adam, which led him to depart from God’s command and eventually to get expelled. The holy Qur’an says:
وَإِذْ قُلْنَا لِلْمَلَائِكَةِ اسْجُدُوا لِآدَمَ فَسَجَدُوا إِلَّا إِبْلِيسَ كَانَ مِنَ الْجِنِّ فَفَسَقَ عَنْ أَمْرِ رَبِّهِ
When We said to the angels, ‘Prostrate before Adam,’ they prostrated, but not Iblis. He was one of the jinn, so he transgressed against his Lord’s command. Will you then take him and his offspring for guardians in My stead, though they are your enemies? How evil a substitute for the wrongdoers! (Kahf: 50)
The fact that man is made of dust and mud and Iblis is made of fire is confirmed by the holy Qur’an. Qur’an says about the creation of human beings: “إِذْ قَالَ رَبُّكَ لِلْمَلَائِكَةِ إِنِّي خَالِقٌ بَشَرًا مِنْ طِينٍ؛” “When your Lord said to the angels, ‘Indeed I am about to create a human being out of clay” (Sad. 71) and says about the creation of the jinn: “وَالْجَانَّ خَلَقْنَاهُ مِنْ قَبْلُ مِنْ نَارِ السَّمُومِ؛” “and We created the jinn earlier, out of a piercing fire” (Hajar: 27), and there is no doubt that fire is softer and better than dust and mud.
But the point that Satan ignored and his arrogance prevented him from understanding was that God says:
وَإِذْ قَالَ رَبُّكَ لِلْمَلَائِكَةِ إِنِّي خَالِقٌ بَشَرًا مِنْ صَلْصَالٍ مِنْ حَمَإٍ مَسْنُونٍ؛ فَإِذَا سَوَّيْتُهُ وَنَفَخْتُ فِيهِ مِنْ رُوحِي فَقَعُوا لَهُ سَاجِدِينَ
When your Lord said to the angels, ‘Indeed I am going to create a human out of a dry clay [drawn] from an aging mud. So when I have proportioned him and breathed into him of My spirit, then fall down in prostration before him.’ (Hajar: 28- 29)
So, in fact, prostration on Adam was prostration on the divine spirit that was blown in Adam’s mud body, so that Iblis compared it with his fiery body and considered himself superior to Adam.
Repulsion of the devil
After this arrogance and sin of Iblis towards the command of God the order of expelling him was issued: God said, “قَالَ فَاخْرُجْ مِنْهَا فَإِنَّكَ رَجِيمٌ؛” “He said, ‘Begone hence, for you are indeed an outcast,” (Hajar: 34); and in fact it was the expulsion of Iblis from the position of angels, which is the position of obedience to divine commands, not arrogance and considering oneself superior. The holy Qur’an says:
قَالَ فَاهْبِطْ مِنْهَا فَمَا يَكُونُ لَكَ أَنْ تَتَكَبَّرَ فِيهَا فَاخْرُجْ إِنَّكَ مِنَ الصَّاغِرِينَ
‘Get down from it!’ He said. ‘It is not for you to be arrogant therein. Begone! You are indeed among the degraded ones.’ (Araf: 13)