How should the verse, “do not sell signs (verses) of Allah for a small price” be understood?

Details of the Question
How should the verse, “do not sell signs (verses) of Allah for a small price” be understood?
The Answer

Dear Brother / Sister,

Jews are asked not to pursue worldly possessions, ranks and prestige, which are not worth anything when compared to denying the true religion and being deprived from the salvation in the hereafter. The expression meaning, " nor sell My Signs (verses) for a small price ", is a definite warning for those who use the glorious and sacred book of Allah and his religion for their personal, material interests , who misinterpret it and who show what is haram as halal and what is halal as haram. (see Ate?, I, 155-156; Ibn Ashur, 1,467-469; Kur’an Yolu:I/52-53)

The issues mentioned by verses like that do not mean to sell the verses in return for a certain amount of money. On the contrary, they mean to sell the religion in return for the world, to violate the orders and prohibitions stated in the verses sent by Allah in return for the valueless interests of the worldly life, to surrender to the delusions of the devil and the evil-commanding soul, thus having a mean situation.

For instance, it is possible to see the issue at the end of the 44th verse including the expression “do not sell signs (verses) of Allah for a small price” of the chapter al-Maida, which addresses Jews as “If any do fail to judge by (the light of) what Allah hath revealed, they are (no better than) Unbelievers” and at the end of the 47th verse of the chapter al-Maida which address Christians as “If any do fail to judge by (the light of) what Allah hath revealed, they are (no better than) those who rebel”.

The fact that Jewish judges took bribes and gave wrong and unfair judgments deliberately, that they did not carry out the decree of stoning to death or they carried it out only for ordinary people, that they concealed the attributes of Hazrat Muhammad (pbuh) so as not to lose the favor of people and their posts while applying the laws means to sell the verses of Allah for a small price.  

- If the truth that Hazrat Muhammad was the true prophet became clear, scholars would have to obtain the information they needed from him. The rabbis and priests would lose their state of being religious authorities; they would have to stay in the background when people followed the new prophet. Those posts were also material posts apart from spiritual posts.  As a matter of fact, when the Byzantine king listened to the envoys of Hazrat Prophet (pbuh) and Abu Sufyan, who had not become a Muslim yet, he accepted that Muhammad was the true prophet but when the priests who were present there objected, he had to pretend that he was joking in order to keep his post.   

However, as it is stated clearly in the Quran, the Jewish rabbis who sold their religion for the world and who were used to leading their lives based on unjust profits like bribery would not only lose their posts but also their income...

It is permissible to sell the books and plates that contain verses from the Quran. It has nothing to do with the issue mentioned in the verse.

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