Makki and Madni Surahs
The revelation of the Quran to the Holy Prophet PBUH started during the month of Ramazan. The first revelation consisted of the first five ayahs of the 96th Surah i.e., Surah Alaq or Iqra. Thereafter, there was a gap after which angel Jibrail appeared and recited the first few ayahs of the 74th Surah (Surah Mudassir) to the Holy Prophet PBUH. After this, revelations continued in Makkah and Madinah for twenty-three years.
The Surahs of the Holy Quran are either Makki or Madni according to the period of their revelation. The Holy Prophet PBUH lived for the first thirteen years of his mission at Makkah and during this period all surahs are known as Makki.
Thereafter, he migrated to Madinah, and all surahs revealed during the ten years of his life at Madinah are known as Madni Surahs.
The Makki surahs are generally brief, They deal with belief in Allah, the Day of Judgement, reward, and punishment, and heaven and hell. They deal with moral character and contain an invitation to virtue. On the other hand, the Madni Surahs contain social duties and obligations, the permission of Jihad, and commands relating to it. These surahs are generally lengthy.
Since the Islamic state was established in Madinah and from there invitation to 1slam was extended to different nations, the style of address adopted in Madni surahs was also different from that of the Makki surahs. ln Makkah, the people were enemies of Islam and their purpose was to torture the Holy Prophet PBUH and the believers. Therefore, in Makki surahs, the language used was stronger. For example, in Ayat 33 of surah 6, it is said: “We know indeed the grief which Their words do cause thee. ” In Ayat 34 of the same surah, it 1s said: “And messengers indeed were rejected before thee.
In Makkah, generally, the ayahs revealed were related to the opposition of the unbelievers, for which the hearts of the Holy Prophet and the believers were strengthened and they were asked to forgive.
In Madinah, the situation was different. Here, three groups of people were living:
1) Muslims i.e. Muhajirin and Ansar
3) As far as the Jews were concerned, the Quran gave them the invitation to accept the message of Allah. The hypocrites were condemned and their cunning schemes were exposed. The principles for governing the Socio-political and financial lives of Muslims were laid down.
As far as Jews were concerned, the Quran gave them the invitation to accept the messenger of Allah. The Hypocrite was condemned and their cunning schemes were exposed. the principles for governing the socio-political and financial lives of Muslims were laid down.
If the orders such as payment of Zakat were given at Makkah it would have made no sense because most of the Muslims there had no wealth or status and were few in number. Similarly, on account of fear of their lives at the hands of the unbelievers, they were not ordered to offer their prayers openly at Makkah.
They were also not in a position to fight and that was why no orders for Jihad were given at Makkah.
Commands were, therefore, given at Makkah and Madinah keeping in view the general conditions of the Muslims on one hand and that of the forces opposing them, on the other.