It is stated in the Quran that Jews will live in poverty but they are very rich today. How would you explain it?

The Details of the Question

(Verse 112 of the chapter of Aal-i Imran)

The Answer

Dear Brother / Sister,

While mentioning that greed is a cause of loss and misery in both the animal and human kingdom, Badiuzzaman Said Nursi gives the state of Jewish nation as an example. He states the following regarding the issue:

"Also, Jewish people finding through greed, usury, and trickery their degrading, miserable, illicit sustenance only at subsistence level, and the contented attitude of nomads and their living with dignity and finding sufficient sustenance, proves decisively what we say once more."(Lem'alar, On Dokuzuncu Lem'a, p. 145).

"Greed brings about disappointment, deficiency, and humiliation; it is the cause of deprivation and abjection. The humiliation and abjection of Jewish people who have leaped greedily upon the world, is a decisive proof of this truth."

"In the human kingdom, Jewish people have clung to the world more greedily and have loved its life with more passion than any others, but the usurious wealth they have gained with great efforts is merely illicit property over which they exercise temporary stewardship, and it benefits them little. It earns them, on the contrary, the blows of abjection and humiliation of death and insult, that are rained down on them by all peoples." (Mektubat, Yirmi İkinci Mektup, p. 271).

"Impotence and want are the means of licit sustenance rather than intelligence and power." (Mektubat, Yirmi Dokuzuncu Mektup, p. 418)" One of the evidences Badiuzzaman Said Nursi uses to prove his claim is the state of Jews. He states the following regarding the issue:

"Also, among the nations of the world there is none that pursues sustenance more than the Jewish nation, which is notorious for its intense greed. But they have suffered more than any from poor livelihoods amid degradation and poverty. Even the rich among them live in lowly fashion. In any event, the possessions they have acquired by such illicit means as usury do not comprise licit sustenance that it might refute our discussion here." (Mektubat, Yirmi Dokuzuncu Mektup, p.418)

Stating that the Quran sometimes points out many universal principles with very small and specific examples, Nursi attracts attention to the following verses and emphasizes the following facts:   

"…They slaughtered your sons and let your women-folk live..." (al-Baqara, 2/49)

According to him, the incident of the male babies of Sons of Israel being slaughtered and the female babies being allowed to live is mentioned in the verse above. When the Quran mentions this specific incident, it points out several massacres that the Jewish nations underwent in many countries in all centuries and the role their women and daughters played in the debauched life of people.

Nursi deals with the following verses based on the same principle and considers the statements of the Quran regarding the issue as a universal law for the view of life of Jews and what happened to them in all centuries:

"Thou wilt indeed find them, of all people, most greedy of life..." (al-Baqara, 2/96).

"Many of them dost thou see, racing each other in sin and rancor, and their eating of things forbidden. Evil indeed are the things that they do." (al-Maida, 5/62)

"...But they (ever) strive to do mischief on earth. And Allah loveth not those who do mischief." (al-Maida, 5/64)

"And We gave (Clear) Warning to the Children of Israel in the Book, that twice would they do mischief on the earth..." (al-Isra, 17/4)

"…Do no evil nor mischief on the (face of the) earth." (al-Baqara, 2/60)

"…Then seek ye for death, if ye are sincere." (al-Baqara, 2/94).

"…They were covered with humiliation and misery." (al-Baqara, 2/61).

Some important messages are included in the information given by the Quran about Jews.

The first one: The information indicating that Jews played tricks and scheme in social life, conspired against the people in the places where they lived, made the poor fight against the rich by setting labor against capital, especially in the last centuries, resorted to interest and usury to acquire unearned gains and caused the establishment of banks, which are the gates of interest.  

The second one: The information indicating that Jews were deprived of establishing a state, that they took part in various committees of chaos in order take revenge from the states and groups that always oppressed them with the feelings of envy and jealousy caused by this deprivation.

The third one: The information proving that Jews are the greediest people related to living long, that they fear death more than other nations, that their greed of life and excessive fear of death will continue until Doomsday, shown by their deeds and attitudes.   

The fourth one: The information indicating that Jews’ humiliation and indigence are a destiny influencing the future of the Jewish nation.

According to Badiuzzaman Said Nursi, the Quran acts so severely against them and deals them awesomely punishing slaps due to those terrible issues that exist in their character and destiny. (Sözler, Yirmi Beşinci Söz, p. 402-403).

In conclusion, we can say that the concepts "dhillah (humiliation) and maskanah (poverty/indigence)" mentioned as attributes of Jews in the Quran are not related to normal material poverty only. Being rich or establishing a state did not save Jews from maskanah, which means inferiority complex.

Maskanah/poverty does not mean material poverty only. The maskanah/poverty mentioned in the verse should be considered as their excessive greed of the world and life. Accordingly, the psychology of poverty became an indispensable phobia for Jews because a person who is greedy is regarded as poor even if he is rich. The real wealth is in the heart.

"Thus they (Jews) were stamped with humiliation and indigence."

The statement of the Quran above expresses that those attributes penetrated into them psychologically, that they were transformed into phobia and that they stamped their hearts with an inerasable stamp. Their greed became their character; undergoing all kinds of humiliation in the way of greed also became their character.

Furthermore, the slap of humiliation and indigence Jews received for about three thousand years has already confirmed the statement of the Quran. Is a period of forty years of any significance compared to three thousand years?

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