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Narrated Ibn 'Abbas:

"The Quraish said to the Jews: 'Give us something that we can ask this man about.' So he said: 'Ask him about the Ruh.' So they asked him about the Ruh. So Allah Most High, revealed: They ask you concerning the Ruh. Say: The Ruh is one of the things, the knowledge of which is only with my Lord. And of knowledge, you have been given only a little (17:85). They replied: 'We have been given immense knowledge, we were given the Tawrah, and whoever has been given the Tawrah, then he has indeed been given a wealth of knowledge.' So the following was revealed: Say: 'If the sea were ink for the Words of my Lord, surely the sea would be exhausted (before the Words of my Lord would be finished.) (18:109)'"
حَدَّثَنَا قُتَيْبَةُ، حَدَّثَنَا يَحْيَى بْنُ زَكَرِيَّا بْنِ أَبِي زَائِدَةَ، عَنْ دَاوُدَ بْنِ أَبِي هِنْدٍ، عَنْ عِكْرِمَةَ، عَنِ ابْنِ عَبَّاسٍ، قَالَ قَالَتْ قُرَيْشٌ لِيَهُودَ اعْطُونَا شَيْئًا نَسْأَلُ عَنْهُ هَذَا الرَّجُلَ فَقَالَ سَلُوهُ عَنِ الرُّوحِ قَالَ فَسَأَلُوهُ عَنِ الرُّوحِ فَأَنْزَلَ اللَّهُ ‏:‏ ‏(‏ يَسْأَلُونَكَ عَنِ الرُّوحِ قُلِ الرُّوحُ مِنْ أَمْرِ رَبِّي وَمَا أُوتِيتُمْ مِنَ الْعِلْمِ إِلاَّ قَلِيلاً ‏)‏ قَالُوا أُوتِينَا عِلْمًا كَثِيرًا التَّوْرَاةُ وَمَنْ أُوتِيَ التَّوْرَاةَ فَقَدْ أُوتِيَ خَيْرًا كَثِيرًا فَأُنْزِلَتْْ‏:‏ ‏(‏ قُلْ لَوْ كَانَ الْبَحْرُ مِدَادًا لِكَلِمَاتِ رَبِّي لَنَفِدَ الْبَحْرُ ‏)‏ إِلَى آخِرِ الآيَةِ قَالَ هَذَا حَدِيثٌ حَسَنٌ صَحِيحٌ غَرِيبٌ مِنْ هَذَا الْوَجْهِ ‏.‏

Classification

Sahih (Authentic)

References

• Jami` at-Tirmidhi, Vol. 5, Book of Tafsir Of The Qur'an, Hadith 3140
• Jami` at-Tirmidhi, Book of Tafsir Of The Qur'an, Hadith 3140