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Qur'an 2:30 is as follows:

And [mention, O Muhammad], when your Lord said to the angels, "Indeed, I will make upon the earth a successive authority." They said, "Will You place upon it one who causes corruption therein and sheds blood, while we declare Your praise and sanctify You?" Allah said, "Indeed, I know that which you do not know."

As far as I can tell, there is a conversation going on between the God and angels when mankind was not yet created. Basically, God informs His angels that He will create humans and appoint them as a "successive authority" upon the earth. To that angels respond with:

"Will You place upon it one who causes corruption therein and sheds blood, while we declare Your praise and sanctify You?"

My question is how did angels know that ? Do they have the ability to see the future? Or perhaps humans already existed at that time in earth in a "lower status" and were already shedding blood?

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please refer here https://islam.stackexchange.com/a/2835/17074
In a Hadith [Imam Sadiq a.s.][2] said to one of his companions:

"لَعَلَّكَ تَرَى أَنَّ اللَّهَ عَزَّ وَ جَلَّ إِنَّمَا خَلَقَ هَذَا الْعَالَمَ الْوَاحِدَ وَ تَرَى أَنَّ اللَّهَ عَزَّ وَ جَلَّ لَمْ يَخْلُقْ بَشَراً غَيْرَكُمْ بَلْ وَ اللَّهِ لَقَدْ خَلَقَ اللَّهُ تَبَارَكَ وَ تَعَالَى أَلْفَ أَلْفِ عَالَمٍ وَ أَلْفَ أَلْفِ آدَمٍ أَنْتَ فِي آخِرِ تِلْكَ الْعَوَالِمِ وَ أُولَئِكَ الْآدَمِيِّين‏"

Perhaps you think Allah (AWJ) created only this universe and created no humans unless you?! Yes, By Allah Indeed God created thousands of thousands of universes and thousands of thousands of Adams that you are at the end of those universes and Adams.

Reference of hadith: Shia hadith book [Al-Khisal][3] written by [Shaykh Saduq][4] volume 2 page 652

Another hadith from Imam Baqir a.s. (the 5th Imam of Shia) sais:

لَقَدْ خَلَقَ اللَّهُ عَزَّ وَ جَلَّ فِي الْأَرْضِ مُنْذُ خَلَقَهَا سَبْعَةَ عَالَمِينَ لَيْسَ هُمْ مِنْ وُلْدِ آدَمَ خَلَقَهُمْ مِنْ أَدِيمِ الْأَرْضِ فَأَسْكَنَهُمْ فِيهَا وَاحِداً بَعْدَ وَاحِدٍ مَعَ عَالَمِهِ ثُمَّ خَلَقَ اللَّهُ عَزَّ وَ جَلَّ آدَمَ أَبَا الْبَشَر

Indeed Allah (AWJ) in this earth, from the time created it, created seven world that were not from children of Adam. created them from surface of earth. so God inhabited them on earth and made one generation after another generation and for each made a world after another world on earth until finally created Adam the father of Bashar* and divaricated his descendents from him.

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Alsalmo Alikom .

No, neither "lower status" , nor "seeing the future" . In Altafseer books, there are two explanations to this verse : 1) God told the angels what will humans do. So we may understand the verse as follows : God says to angles that he will create the humans to rule earth by his words "Khalifa" , and some of them will be bad and do killings and other sins. So the angels asked to understand : so why God you are to create them, if for worshipping, we angles worship you and do not do sins. So God told them : I know , you do not know.

2) prior to mankind, Al-Jin (the demons) ruled earth for a long time, and did killings and other sins, so Angels was asking about the humans and how they will make , similar to their predecessors, the demons.

Wallaho Aallam .

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    Thanks for the answer. Could you provide some references from the tafseer books you mentioned ? – SpiderRico May 8 '16 at 1:13

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