The commentary of the word of Allah, the High:
إِنَّ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ سَيَجْعَلُ لَهُمُ الرَّحْمَنُ وُدًّا
“Surely (as for) those who believe and do good deeds for them will Allah bring about love.”
Indeed, in Ghaayah al-Maraam, thirteen traditions have been mentioned from Sunni sources that this verse was revealed concerning our master Ali Ameerul Momineen (a.s.).
Some of these are as follows:
From Ibn Maghaazeli al-Shaafe’i in his ‘al-Manaaqeb’ reporting directly from Ibn Abbas, who chronicles, “The Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.a.) took my hand and took the hand of Ali (a.s.) and prayed four units of prayers. Thereafter, he (s.a.w.a.) raised his hands towards the skies and supplicated, ‘O Allah! (Prophet) Moosa Ibn Imran asked You and I, Muhammad, ask you that You expand my heart for me, make my affair easy for me, untie the knots of my tongue that they may understand my saying; and make for me a minister from my family, Ali; strengthen my back with him and, make him a partner in my affair.” Ibn Abbas said, “Then, I heard an announcer call out, ‘O Ahmad! You have been granted what you asked.’”
The Prophet (s.a.w.a.) said, ‘O Ali! Raise your hand towards the sky and ask your Lord, He will grant you.’ So, Ali (a.s.) raised his hands towards the sky while he (a.s.) was supplicating, ‘O Allah! Make a covenant for me and bring about love for me near Yourself.’ Allah – the High – revealed on His Prophet (s.a.w.a.), “Surely (as for) those who believe and do good deeds for them will Allah bring about love.” The Holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.) recited this verse for his companions. They were truly amazed by it. The Holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.) asked, ‘Are you amazed that the Quran is divided into four parts. One-fourth is concerning us Ahle Bait (a.s.) exclusively, one-fourth is the permissible, one-fourth is the prohibited and one-fourth is about ethics and laws. And Allah has sent concerning us the precious verses of the Quran.’”
From al-Tha’labi in his exegesis under the exegesis of the aforementioned verse, he records, “Informed us Abd al-Khaaleq Ibn Ali Ibn Abd al-Khaaleq from Abu Ali Muhammad Ibn Ahmad Ibn al-Hasan al-Sawwaaf at Baghdad from Abu Ja’far al-Hasan Ibn Ali al-Farsi from Ishaaq Ibn Basheer al-Kufi from Khaaled Ibn Yazeed from Hamzah from Abu Ishaaq al-Sabe’ei from al-Buraa Ibn Aazeb that the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.a.) said to Ali Ibn Abi Taalib (a.s.), ‘O Ali, say, ‘O Allah! Make for me a covenant with You and instil my love in the hearts of the believers.’’ So, Allah – Mighty and Majestic be He – revealed, “Surely (as for) those who believe and do good deeds for them will Allah bring about love”.”
From Ibraheem Ibn Muhammad al-Hamweeni who reports that Waahedi said, “Informed us Ismaeel Ibn Ibraheem Ibn Hamwayh from Yahya Ibn Muhammad al-Alawi from Abu Ali al-Sawwaaf at Baghdad from al-Hasan Ibn Ali Ibn al-Waleed Ibn al-No’maan al-Farsi from Ishaaq Ibn Basheer from Khaaled Ibn Yazeed Ibn Hujrah al-Zayyaat from Abu Ishaaq from al-Buraa that the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.a.) said to Ali (a.s.), ‘O Ali, say, ‘O Allah! Make for me a covenant with You and instil my love in the hearts of the believers.’’ So, Allah – the High – revealed, “Surely (as for) those who believe and do good deeds for them will Allah bring about love”. He said, ‘It was revealed concerning Ali Ibn Abi Taalib (a.s.).’”
And from Shiite sources, he has mentioned eleven traditions. Some of these are as follows:
From Muhammad Ibn Yaqub from Muhammad Ibn Yahya from Salmah Ibn al-Khattaab from al-Hasan Ibn Abd al-Rahmaan from Ali Ibn Abi Hamzah from Abu Baseer, who reports, “I asked Imam Abu Abdillah (a.s.) concerning the saying of Allah – the High – “Surely (as for) those who believe and do good deeds for them will Allah bring about love”. He (a.s.) replied, ‘The mastership of Ameerul Momineen (a.s.), it is the love which Allah – the High – has talked about.’”
From Ali Ibn Ibraheem in his exegesis, “Narrated unto us Ja’far Ibn Ahmad from Ubaydullah Ibn Moosa from al-Hasan Ibn Ali Ibn Ali Ibn Abi Hamzah from his father from Abu Baseer, who says, ‘I asked Imam Abu Abdillah (a.s.) about concerning the saying of Allah – the High – “Surely (as for) those who believe and do good deeds for them will Allah bring about love”. He (a.s.) replied, ‘The mastership of Ameerul Momineen (a.s.), it is the love which He has mentioned.’”
When you have become aware of what we have mentioned from the abundant traditions recorded by both the sects that prove that this noble verse was revealed in the glory of our master Ameerul Momineen Ali Ibn Abi Taalib (a.s.), then know that it establishes the distinction of Imamate and Caliphate for him (a.s.).
Explanation: The phrase ‘bring about’ in the noble verse can be implied either in the involuntary world (تكويني) or in the voluntary world (تشريعي). And the word ‘love’ can either mean mastership and Imamate or absolute love and affection.
If we say that the implication is in the voluntary world, as traditions from Shiite reveals show as do the narrations of Ibn al-Maghaazeli, al-Tha’labi and al-Hamweeni, due to the reference of the referred covenant to the covenant of Caliphate and Imamate, then the evidence is clear and obvious.
Objection: There is no ground to interpret ‘love’ as mastership and Imamate since that will not be its true meaning, as is apparent, nor will it have any such metaphorical implication as there is no true relation for usage between the two meanings.
Answer: Presence of true love for a person necessitates being to his liking and not opposing him. So, vis-à-vis an action, a person will be said to love a deed when he agrees to it, follows it and treads on its path, just as the phrase ‘who loves to spread indecencies’ in the verse “Surely (as for) those who love that scandal should circulate respecting those who believe” is used to denote backbiting. For, true love necessitates manifestation of its effects externally. And if its effects are not found externally, then that person will not be said to have true love. It is permissible to imply its effects as an allusion. So, the intention of mastership and Imamate from the word ‘love’ is a real implication, and if not, then at least, it can be said to have been used as an allusion.
If we say that the meaning of the voluntary sense of love is for absolute love and affection, then the evidence is established.
Explanation: There is no doubt that our master Ameerul Momineen (a.s.) claimed Caliphate and Imamate and did not consider anyone from the Ummah as eligible for it. He (a.s.) refused to pay allegiance to Abu Bakr and argued against him and other companions. He (a.s.) also sought help from them to get back his right from Abu Bakr. He (a.s.) did not pay allegiance to Abu Bakr of his (a.s.) volition, a reality more apparent than daylight. None will deny these facts but an obstinate opponent. So, his (a.s.) love, which Allah has made obligatory for him (a.s.), demands that one should testify in him (a.s.) and follow in his (a.s.) footsteps. Otherwise, the claimant of his (a.s.) love will not be true in his claim. For, it is necessary that true love is that whose effects are manifested externally. Then how can one claim to love him (a.s.) while opposing him (a.s.)?
Objection: Presence of love does not necessitate verification of the claim of the loved one. For, the believers have been ordered to love each other but they have not been ordered to verify the claims of each other without evidence.
Answer: Love vis-à-vis belief is all inclusive and hence, there is no scope for limiting verification to each other. And the verification of each one of them for the other necessitates the verification of the plaintiff for the defendant.
But over here, the general believers have been ordered to love our master Ameerul Momineen (a.s.) and hence, it is obligatory on them to verify his (a.s.) claim and follow him (a.s.).
Also, his (a.s.) love being made obligatory on all the believers is not but being a complete form of obedience to Allah and His Messenger (s.a.w.a.). It is dearest and most beloved thing near Allah – the High – and His Messenger (s.a.w.a.). Thus, it would be irrational to give preference to anyone else other than him (a.s.) in the Caliphate of Allah – the High – and His Messenger (s.a.w.a.).
If the implication is involuntary (تكويني), then too the proof is established, whether by love mastership and Imamate is intended or absolute love and affection.
Explanation: To consider the involuntary (تكويني) meaning over here implies destining his (a.s.) love and facilitating its causes in the hearts of the believers, in a way that they are guided towards it and they select his (a.s.) love and affection. Hence, there will not be a believer but that he will love him (a.s.) and there will not be a hypocrite but that he will hate him (a.s.). Obviously, this destining of love is not in the meaning of compulsion and coercion. Limiting his (a.s.) love only from all the believers in their hearts is not for any reason but because its is the closest and most beloved thing near Allah – the High – and near His Messenger (s.a.w.a.). Thus, only he (a.s.), and none else, is eligible and deserving for the Caliphate of Allah – the High – and the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.a.).
All Praise is for Allah Who granted us his (a.s.) love and the love of the infallible ones from his progeny (peace be on them all) and granted us enmity of their enemies.
 Surah Maryam (19): Verse 96
 Ghaayah al-Maraam, p. 373; al-Manaaqeb of Ibn Maghaazeli, p. 328
 Ghaayah al-Maraam, p. 373
 Ghaayah al-Maraam, p. 373 narrating from Faraaed al-Simtain
 Al-Kaafi, vol. 1, p. 431; Ghaayah al-Maraam, p. 374
 Ghaayah al-Maraam, p. 374 narrating from Tafseer al-Qummi, p. 417
 Surah Nur (24): Verse 19