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وَإِذْ وَٰعَدْنَا مُوسَىٰ أَرْبَعِينَ لَيْلَةً ثُمَّ ٱتَّخَذْتُمُ ٱلْعِجْلَ مِن بَعْدِهِ وَأَنْتُمْ ظَٰلِمُونَ
-Al-Baqarah ( البقرة )

Al Qushairi Tafsir

[2:51] And when We appointed for Moses forty nights, then you took to yourselves the Calf after him, and you were evildoers.
What a difference between one community and another! The community of Moses (ʿa) had their prophet withdraw [from them] for forty days and they took the calf as their object of worship and were pleased with that. They said, 'This is your God and the God of Moses: so [Moses] forgot' [20:88]. [On the other hand], the community of Muḥammad the Chosen (ṣ) spent many years with their prophet. If they had heard anyone mention some form of [material] comparison to describe what they worshipped, they would not have spared their last breaths and would have given up their spirits.
It is said Moses (ṣ) entrusted his community to his brother, saying, 'Take my place with my people' [7:142]. When he returned he found they had fallen into temptation (fitna). Our Prophet (ṣ) relied on God and did not suggest anyone to lead the community. At the end of his life, he was saying 'the highest companions'. See how the Real attended to the care of [Muḥammad's] community in preserving their monotheism. By my life, they may forfeit their [territorial] borders but they will not compromise their declaration of God's unity (tawḥīd).