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وَمِنْ حَيْثُ خَرَجْتَ فَوَلِّ وَجْهَكَ شَطْرَ ٱلْمَسْجِدِ ٱلْحَرَامِ وَحَيْثُ مَا كُنْتُمْ فَوَلُّواْ وُجُوهَكُمْ شَطْرَهُ لِئَلاَّ يَكُونَ لِلنَّاسِ عَلَيْكُمْ حُجَّةٌ إِلاَّ ٱلَّذِينَ ظَلَمُواْ مِنْهُمْ فَلاَ تَخْشَوْهُمْ وَٱخْشَوْنِي وَلأُتِمَّ نِعْمَتِي عَلَيْكُمْ وَلَعَلَّكُمْ تَهْتَدُونَ
-Al-Baqarah ( البقرة )

Tafsir al-Jalalayn

From whatever place you issue, turn your face towards the Sacred Mosque; and wherever you may be, turn your faces towards it (all of which is being repeated for emphasis), so that there be not any argument from the people, the Jews or the idolaters, against you, [so that there be not] any cause for contention regarding the change to a different direction of prayer. In this way, their contentions against you will cease to exist, both [the contentions] of the Jews when they say, ‘He [Muhammad (s)] rejects our religion, but follows our direction of prayer’, and of the idolaters when they say, ‘He [Muhammad (s)] claims to follow the creed of Abraham, but he contravenes his [Abraham’s] qibla’; excepting the evildoers among them, acting in obstinacy, who will say, ‘He [Muhammad (s)] only changed to this direction because of his [natural] inclination towards the [idolatrous] religion of his forefathers’. The exceptive statement [indicated by illā] is a continuous one, the meaning being: ‘No one will have anything to say against you, except for what these people say’; and do not fear them, do not fear their arguing [with you] regarding the change to it [the Ka‘ba], but fear Me, by complying with My command; and that I may perfect My grace upon you, by guiding you to the principal rituals of your religion, and that you may be guided, to the truth (wa-li-utimma, ‘that I may perfect’, is a supplement to li-allā yakūna, ‘that there be not’).

Tafsir al-Jalalayn, trans. Feras Hamza
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