Sura/Chapter:

Verse:    Count: 123
Tafseer/Commentary:
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Translations:
11: Hud - هود

11:1
[ Original ]
بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَٰنِ الرَّحِيمِ الر ۚ كِتَابٌ أُحْكِمَتْ آيَاتُهُ ثُمَّ فُصِّلَتْ مِنْ لَدُنْ حَكِيمٍ خَبِيرٍ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
A. L. R. (This is) a Book, with verses basic or fundamental (of established meaning), further explained in detail,- from One Who is Wise and Wellacquainted (with all things):
[ Saheeh International ]
Alif, Lam, Ra. [This is] a Book whose verses are perfected and then presented in detail from [one who is] Wise and Acquainted.
Tafseer Commentary

1492 For the meaning of these Letters, see Introduction to S. 10.

1493 See n. 347 to 3:7. Every basic principle is included in Allah's Revelation, and it is further illustrated and explained in detail.


11:2
[ Original ]
أَلَّا تَعْبُدُوا إِلَّا اللَّهَ ۚ إِنَّنِي لَكُمْ مِنْهُ نَذِيرٌ وَبَشِيرٌ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
(It teacheth) that ye should worship none but Allah. (Say): "Verily I am (sent) unto you from Him to warn and to bring glad tidings:
[ Saheeh International ]
[Through a messenger, saying], "Do not worship except Allah. Indeed, I am to you from Him a warner and a bringer of good tidings,"
Tafseer Commentary

1494 Al Mustafa's Message-as was the Message of all prophets-was to warn against evil, and to bring the glad tidings of Allah's Mercy and Grace to all who would receive it in Faith and trust in Allah. This double Message is preached illustratively in this Surah.


11:3
[ Original ]
وَأَنِ اسْتَغْفِرُوا رَبَّكُمْ ثُمَّ تُوبُوا إِلَيْهِ يُمَتِّعْكُمْ مَتَاعًا حَسَنًا إِلَىٰ أَجَلٍ مُسَمًّى وَيُؤْتِ كُلَّ ذِي فَضْلٍ فَضْلَهُ ۖ وَإِنْ تَوَلَّوْا فَإِنِّي أَخَافُ عَلَيْكُمْ عَذَابَ يَوْمٍ كَبِيرٍ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
"(And to preach thus), 'Seek ye the forgiveness of your Lord, and turn to Him in repentance; that He may grant you enjoyment, good (and true), for a term appointed, and bestow His abounding grace on all who abound in merit! But if ye turn away, then I fear for you the penalty of a great day:
[ Saheeh International ]
And [saying], "Seek forgiveness of your Lord and repent to Him, [and] He will let you enjoy a good provision for a specified term and give every doer of favor his favor. But if you turn away, then indeed, I fear for you the punishment of a great Day.
Tafseer Commentary

1495 The enjoyment of all good and true things in life refers, I think, to the present life with its limited term, and the abounding Grace refers to the higher spiritual reward, which begins here but is completed in the life to come.


11:4
[ Original ]
إِلَى اللَّهِ مَرْجِعُكُمْ ۖ وَهُوَ عَلَىٰ كُلِّ شَيْءٍ قَدِيرٌ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
'To Allah is your return, and He hath power over all things.' "
[ Saheeh International ]
To Allah is your return, and He is over all things competent."

11:5
[ Original ]
أَلَا إِنَّهُمْ يَثْنُونَ صُدُورَهُمْ لِيَسْتَخْفُوا مِنْهُ ۚ أَلَا حِينَ يَسْتَغْشُونَ ثِيَابَهُمْ يَعْلَمُ مَا يُسِرُّونَ وَمَا يُعْلِنُونَ ۚ إِنَّهُ عَلِيمٌ بِذَاتِ الصُّدُورِ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
Behold! they fold up their hearts, that they may lie hid from Him! Ah even when they cover themselves with their garments, He knoweth what they conceal, and what they reveal: for He knoweth well the (inmost secrets) of the hearts.
[ Saheeh International ]
Unquestionably, they the disbelievers turn away their breasts to hide themselves from Him. Unquestionably, [even] when they cover themselves in their clothing, Allah knows what they conceal and what they declare. Indeed, He is Knowing of that within the breasts.
Tafseer Commentary

1496 The heart (literally breast in Arabic) is already well-guarded in the body; and secrets are supposed to be hidden in the heart or breast. Foolish persons might further cover up their hearts with cloaks, but even so, nothing can be hidden from Allah.

1497 Cf. 3:119.


11:6
[ Original ]
وَمَا مِنْ دَابَّةٍ فِي الْأَرْضِ إِلَّا عَلَى اللَّهِ رِزْقُهَا وَيَعْلَمُ مُسْتَقَرَّهَا وَمُسْتَوْدَعَهَا ۚ كُلٌّ فِي كِتَابٍ مُبِينٍ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
There is no moving creature on earth but its sustenance dependeth on Allah. He knoweth the time and place of its definite abode and its temporary deposit: All is in a clear Record.
[ Saheeh International ]
And there is no creature on earth but that upon Allah is its provision, and He knows its place of dwelling and place of storage. All is in a clear register.
Tafseer Commentary

1498 Cf. 6:59. Nothing happens in Creation except by the Word of Allah and with the knowledge of Allah. Not a leaf stirs but by His Will. Its maintenance in every sense is dependent on His Will.

1499 Mustaqarr= definite abode; where a thing stops or stays for some time, where it is established. Mustawda' = where a thing is laid up or deposited for a little while. Referring to animals, the former denotes its life on this earth; the latter its temporary prenatal existence in the egg or the womb and its after-death existence in the tomb or whatever state it is in until its resurrection.

1500 Cf. 6:59 and n. 880, and 10:61 and n. 1450.


11:7
[ Original ]
وَهُوَ الَّذِي خَلَقَ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضَ فِي سِتَّةِ أَيَّامٍ وَكَانَ عَرْشُهُ عَلَى الْمَاءِ لِيَبْلُوَكُمْ أَيُّكُمْ أَحْسَنُ عَمَلًا ۗ وَلَئِنْ قُلْتَ إِنَّكُمْ مَبْعُوثُونَ مِنْ بَعْدِ الْمَوْتِ لَيَقُولَنَّ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا إِنْ هَٰذَا إِلَّا سِحْرٌ مُبِينٌ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
He it is Who created the heavens and the earth in six Days - and His Throne was over the Waters - that He might try you, which of you is best in conduct. But if thou wert to say to them, "Ye shall indeed be raised up after death", the Unbelievers would be sure to say, "This is nothing but obvious sorcery!"
[ Saheeh International ]
And it is He who created the heavens and the earth in six days - and His Throne had been upon water - that He might test you as to which of you is best in deed. But if you say, "Indeed, you are resurrected after death," those who disbelieve will surely say, "This is not but obvious magic."
Tafseer Commentary

1501 See n. 1031 to 7:54.

1502 It is scientifically correct to say that all life was evolved out of the waters, and this statement also occurs in the Qur'an, 21:30. Some such meaning, I think, also attaches to the Gen. 1:2. The past tense "was" refers to the time before life developed in solid farms, on land and in air. (R).

1503 The Creation we see around us is not idle sport or play (in Hindi, Lila) or whim on the part of Allah. It is the medium through which our spiritual life is to develop, with such free will as we have. This life is our testing time.

1504 The Unbelievers, who do not believe in a Future life, think all talk of it is like a sorcerer's talk, empty of reality. But in this they show their ignorance, and they are begging the question.


11:8
[ Original ]
وَلَئِنْ أَخَّرْنَا عَنْهُمُ الْعَذَابَ إِلَىٰ أُمَّةٍ مَعْدُودَةٍ لَيَقُولُنَّ مَا يَحْبِسُهُ ۗ أَلَا يَوْمَ يَأْتِيهِمْ لَيْسَ مَصْرُوفًا عَنْهُمْ وَحَاقَ بِهِمْ مَا كَانُوا بِهِ يَسْتَهْزِئُونَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
If We delay the penalty for them for a definite term, they are sure to say, "What keeps it back?" Ah! On the day it (actually) reaches them, nothing will turn it away from them, and they will be completely encircled by that which they used to mock at!
[ Saheeh International ]
And if We hold back from them the punishment for a limited time, they will surely say, "What detains it?" Unquestionably, on the Day it comes to them, it will not be averted from them, and they will be enveloped by what they used to ridicule.
Tafseer Commentary

1505 As much as to say: "Oh! all this talk of punishment is nonsense. There is no such thing!"


11:9
[ Original ]
وَلَئِنْ أَذَقْنَا الْإِنْسَانَ مِنَّا رَحْمَةً ثُمَّ نَزَعْنَاهَا مِنْهُ إِنَّهُ لَيَئُوسٌ كَفُورٌ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
If We give man a taste of Mercy from Ourselves, and then withdraw it from him, behold! he is in despair and (falls into) blasphemy.
[ Saheeh International ]
And if We give man a taste of mercy from Us and then We withdraw it from him, indeed, he is despairing and ungrateful.
Tafseer Commentary

1506 He does not realise that some kinds of chastening are good for discipline and the training of our spiritual faculties.


11:10
[ Original ]
وَلَئِنْ أَذَقْنَاهُ نَعْمَاءَ بَعْدَ ضَرَّاءَ مَسَّتْهُ لَيَقُولَنَّ ذَهَبَ السَّيِّئَاتُ عَنِّي ۚ إِنَّهُ لَفَرِحٌ فَخُورٌ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
But if We give him a taste of (Our) favours after adversity hath touched him, he is sure to say, "All evil has departed from me:" Behold! he falls into exultation and pride.
[ Saheeh International ]
But if We give him a taste of favor after hardship has touched him, he will surely say, "Bad times have left me." Indeed, he is exultant and boastful -
Tafseer Commentary

1507 He takes it as a matter of course, or as due to his own merit or cleverness! He does not realise that both in good and ill fortune there is a beneficent purpose in the Plan of Allah.


11:11
[ Original ]
إِلَّا الَّذِينَ صَبَرُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ أُولَٰئِكَ لَهُمْ مَغْفِرَةٌ وَأَجْرٌ كَبِيرٌ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
Not so do those who show patience and constancy, and work righteousness; for them is forgiveness (of sins) and a great reward.
[ Saheeh International ]
Except for those who are patient and do righteous deeds; those will have forgiveness and great reward.
Tafseer Commentary

1508 Their attitude is the right one: to take ill fortune with fortitude and good fortune with humility, and in either case go on persevering in good deeds to their fellow creatures.


11:12
[ Original ]
فَلَعَلَّكَ تَارِكٌ بَعْضَ مَا يُوحَىٰ إِلَيْكَ وَضَائِقٌ بِهِ صَدْرُكَ أَنْ يَقُولُوا لَوْلَا أُنْزِلَ عَلَيْهِ كَنْزٌ أَوْ جَاءَ مَعَهُ مَلَكٌ ۚ إِنَّمَا أَنْتَ نَذِيرٌ ۚ وَاللَّهُ عَلَىٰ كُلِّ شَيْءٍ وَكِيلٌ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
Perchance thou mayest (feel the inclination) to give up a part of what is revealed unto thee, and thy heart feeleth straitened lest they say, "Why is not a treasure sent down unto him, or why does not an angel come down with him?" But thou art there only to warn! It is Allah that arrangeth all affairs!
[ Saheeh International ]
Then would you possibly leave [out] some of what is revealed to you, or is your breast constrained by it because they say, "Why has there not been sent down to him a treasure or come with him an angel?" But you are only a warner. And Allah is Disposer of all things.
Tafseer Commentary

1509 Every Prophet of Allah, when he not only encounters opposition, but is actually accused of falsehood and those very evils which he is protesting against, may feel inclined, in his human weakness, to ask himself the question, "Supposing I omit this little point, will Allah's Truth then be accepted more readily?" Or he may think to himself, "If I had only more money to organise my campaign, or something which will draw people's attention, like the company of an angel, how much better can I push my Message?" He is told that truth must be delivered as it is revealed, even though portions of it may be unpalatable, and that resources and other means to draw people to him are beside the point. He must use just such resources and opportunities as he has, and leave the rest to Allah.


11:13
[ Original ]
أَمْ يَقُولُونَ افْتَرَاهُ ۖ قُلْ فَأْتُوا بِعَشْرِ سُوَرٍ مِثْلِهِ مُفْتَرَيَاتٍ وَادْعُوا مَنِ اسْتَطَعْتُمْ مِنْ دُونِ اللَّهِ إِنْ كُنْتُمْ صَادِقِينَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
Or they may say, "He forged it," Say, "Bring ye then ten suras forged, like unto it, and call (to your aid) whomsoever ye can, other than Allah.- If ye speak the truth!
[ Saheeh International ]
Or do they say, "He invented it"? Say, "Then bring ten surahs like it that have been invented and call upon [for assistance] whomever you can besides Allah, if you should be truthful."
Tafseer Commentary

1510 Cf. 2:23 , 10:38 , 17:88, and 52:33-34.


11:14
[ Original ]
فَإِلَّمْ يَسْتَجِيبُوا لَكُمْ فَاعْلَمُوا أَنَّمَا أُنْزِلَ بِعِلْمِ اللَّهِ وَأَنْ لَا إِلَٰهَ إِلَّا هُوَ ۖ فَهَلْ أَنْتُمْ مُسْلِمُونَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
"If then they (your false gods) answer not your (call), know ye that this revelation is sent down (replete) with the knowledge of Allah, and that there is no god but He! will ye even then submit (to Islam)?"
[ Saheeh International ]
And if they do not respond to you - then know that the Qur'an was revealed with the knowledge of Allah and that there is no deity except Him. Then, would you [not] be Muslims?

11:15
[ Original ]
مَنْ كَانَ يُرِيدُ الْحَيَاةَ الدُّنْيَا وَزِينَتَهَا نُوَفِّ إِلَيْهِمْ أَعْمَالَهُمْ فِيهَا وَهُمْ فِيهَا لَا يُبْخَسُونَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
Those who desire the life of the present and its glitter,- to them we shall pay (the price of) their deeds therein,- without diminution.
[ Saheeh International ]
Whoever desires the life of this world and its adornments - We fully repay them for their deeds therein, and they therein will not be deprived.
Tafseer Commentary

1511 If worldly men desire the glitter of this world, they shall have it in full measure, but it is false glitter, and it involves the negation of that spiritual life which comes from the guidance of the inner light and from the revelation of Allah, as described in verse 17 below.


11:16
[ Original ]
أُولَٰئِكَ الَّذِينَ لَيْسَ لَهُمْ فِي الْآخِرَةِ إِلَّا النَّارُ ۖ وَحَبِطَ مَا صَنَعُوا فِيهَا وَبَاطِلٌ مَا كَانُوا يَعْمَلُونَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
They are those for whom there is nothing in the Hereafter but the Fire: vain are the designs they frame therein, and of no effect and the deeds that they do!
[ Saheeh International ]
Those are the ones for whom there is not in the Hereafter but the Fire. And lost is what they did therein, and worthless is what they used to do.

11:17
[ Original ]
أَفَمَنْ كَانَ عَلَىٰ بَيِّنَةٍ مِنْ رَبِّهِ وَيَتْلُوهُ شَاهِدٌ مِنْهُ وَمِنْ قَبْلِهِ كِتَابُ مُوسَىٰ إِمَامًا وَرَحْمَةً ۚ أُولَٰئِكَ يُؤْمِنُونَ بِهِ ۚ وَمَنْ يَكْفُرْ بِهِ مِنَ الْأَحْزَابِ فَالنَّارُ مَوْعِدُهُ ۚ فَلَا تَكُ فِي مِرْيَةٍ مِنْهُ ۚ إِنَّهُ الْحَقُّ مِنْ رَبِّكَ وَلَٰكِنَّ أَكْثَرَ النَّاسِ لَا يُؤْمِنُونَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
Can they be (like) those who accept a Clear (Sign) from their Lord, and whom a witness from Himself doth teach, as did the Book of Moses before it,- a guide and a mercy? They believe therein; but those of the Sects that reject it,- the Fire will be their promised meeting-place. Be not then in doubt thereon: for it is the truth from thy Lord: yet many among men do not believe!
[ Saheeh International ]
So is one who [stands] upon a clear evidence from his Lord [like the aforementioned]? And a witness from Him follows it, and before it was the Scripture of Moses to lead and as mercy. Those [believers in the former revelations] believe in the Qur'an. But whoever disbelieves in it from the [various] factions - the Fire is his promised destination. So be not in doubt about it. Indeed, it is the truth from your Lord, but most of the people do not believe.
Tafseer Commentary

1512 "A witness from Himself"', i.e., the Book which was given to al Mustafa, the Holy Qur'an, which is compared to the original Revelation given to Moses. We make no difference between one true and genuine Message and another, nor between one prophet and another-for they all come from the One True God.

1513 "Guide": the Arabic word here is Imam, a leader, a guide, one that directs to the true Path. Such a direction is an instance of the Mercy and Goodness of Allah to man. The Qur'an and the Prophet Muhammad are also called, each, a Guide and a Mercy, and so are these epithets applicable to previous Books and Prophets.


11:18
[ Original ]
وَمَنْ أَظْلَمُ مِمَّنِ افْتَرَىٰ عَلَى اللَّهِ كَذِبًا ۚ أُولَٰئِكَ يُعْرَضُونَ عَلَىٰ رَبِّهِمْ وَيَقُولُ الْأَشْهَادُ هَٰؤُلَاءِ الَّذِينَ كَذَبُوا عَلَىٰ رَبِّهِمْ ۚ أَلَا لَعْنَةُ اللَّهِ عَلَى الظَّالِمِينَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
Who doth more wrong than those who invent a life against Allah. They will be turned back to the presence of their Lord, and the witnesses will say, "These are the ones who lied against their Lord! Behold! the Curse of Allah is on those who do wrong!-
[ Saheeh International ]
And who is more unjust than he who invents a lie about Allah? Those will be presented before their Lord, and the witnesses will say, "These are the ones who lied against their Lord." Unquestionably, the curse of Allah is upon the wrongdoers.

11:19
[ Original ]
الَّذِينَ يَصُدُّونَ عَنْ سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ وَيَبْغُونَهَا عِوَجًا وَهُمْ بِالْآخِرَةِ هُمْ كَافِرُونَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
"Those who would hinder (men) from the path of Allah and would seek in it something crooked: these were they who denied the Hereafter!"
[ Saheeh International ]
Who averted [people] from the way of Allah and sought to make it [seem] deviant while they, concerning the Hereafter, were disbelievers.
Tafseer Commentary

1514 Cf. 7:45 and 14:3,


11:20
[ Original ]
أُولَٰئِكَ لَمْ يَكُونُوا مُعْجِزِينَ فِي الْأَرْضِ وَمَا كَانَ لَهُمْ مِنْ دُونِ اللَّهِ مِنْ أَوْلِيَاءَ ۘ يُضَاعَفُ لَهُمُ الْعَذَابُ ۚ مَا كَانُوا يَسْتَطِيعُونَ السَّمْعَ وَمَا كَانُوا يُبْصِرُونَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
They will in no wise frustrate (His design) on earth, nor have they protectors besides Allah. Their penalty will be doubled! They lost the power to hear, and they did not see!
[ Saheeh International ]
Those were not causing failure [to Allah] on earth, nor did they have besides Allah any protectors. For them the punishment will be multiplied. They were not able to hear, nor did they see.
Tafseer Commentary

1515 Cf. 7:38 . In this context, it is implied that they committed a twofold wrong: (1) in inventing falsehoods against Allah, which deadened their own soul, and (2) in leading others astray or hindering them from Allah's path. Thus they lost the faculty of hearing, which they might have used to hear the Word of Allah, and they blinded the faculty of sight by shutting out Allah's light, (see also 25:69 and 33:68).


11:21
[ Original ]
أُولَٰئِكَ الَّذِينَ خَسِرُوا أَنْفُسَهُمْ وَضَلَّ عَنْهُمْ مَا كَانُوا يَفْتَرُونَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
They are the ones who have lost their own souls: and the (fancies) they invented have left them in the lurch!
[ Saheeh International ]
Those are the ones who will have lost themselves, and lost from them is what they used to invent.

11:22
[ Original ]
لَا جَرَمَ أَنَّهُمْ فِي الْآخِرَةِ هُمُ الْأَخْسَرُونَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
Without a doubt, these are the very ones who will lose most in the Hereafter!
[ Saheeh International ]
Assuredly, it is they in the Hereafter who will be the greatest losers.

11:23
[ Original ]
إِنَّ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ وَأَخْبَتُوا إِلَىٰ رَبِّهِمْ أُولَٰئِكَ أَصْحَابُ الْجَنَّةِ ۖ هُمْ فِيهَا خَالِدُونَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
But those who believe and work righteousness, and humble themselves before their Lord,- They will be companions of the gardens, to dwell therein for aye!
[ Saheeh International ]
Indeed, they who have believed and done righteous deeds and humbled themselves to their Lord - those are the companions of Paradise; they will abide eternally therein.
Tafseer Commentary

1516 Note that the humility is to be "before their Lord," i.e., in Allah's sight. There is no virtue, quite the contrary, in rubbing our noses to the ground before men. We are not to be arrogant even before men because we are humble as in Allah's sight. Nor does true humility lose self-confidence: for that self-confidence arises from confidence in the support and help of Allah.


11:24
[ Original ]
مَثَلُ الْفَرِيقَيْنِ كَالْأَعْمَىٰ وَالْأَصَمِّ وَالْبَصِيرِ وَالسَّمِيعِ ۚ هَلْ يَسْتَوِيَانِ مَثَلًا ۚ أَفَلَا تَذَكَّرُونَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
These two kinds (of men) may be compared to the blind and deaf, and those who can see and hear well. Are they equal when compared? Will ye not then take heed?
[ Saheeh International ]
The example of the two parties is like the blind and deaf, and the seeing and hearing. Are they equal in comparison? Then, will you not remember?

11:25
[ Original ]
وَلَقَدْ أَرْسَلْنَا نُوحًا إِلَىٰ قَوْمِهِ إِنِّي لَكُمْ نَذِيرٌ مُبِينٌ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
We sent Noah to his people (with a mission): "I have come to you with a Clear Warning:
[ Saheeh International ]
And We had certainly sent Noah to his people, [saying], "Indeed, I am to you a clear warner

11:26
[ Original ]
أَنْ لَا تَعْبُدُوا إِلَّا اللَّهَ ۖ إِنِّي أَخَافُ عَلَيْكُمْ عَذَابَ يَوْمٍ أَلِيمٍ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
"That ye serve none but Allah. Verily I do fear for you the penalty of a Grievous Day."
[ Saheeh International ]
That you not worship except Allah. Indeed, I fear for you the punishment of a painful day."
Tafseer Commentary

1517 Noah's mission was to a wicked world, plunged in sin. The mission had a double character, as in the mission of all Prophets of Allah: it had to warn men against evil and call them to repentance, and it had to give them the glad tidings of Allah's Grace in case they turned back to Allah: it was a Guidance and Mercy.


11:27
[ Original ]
فَقَالَ الْمَلَأُ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا مِنْ قَوْمِهِ مَا نَرَاكَ إِلَّا بَشَرًا مِثْلَنَا وَمَا نَرَاكَ اتَّبَعَكَ إِلَّا الَّذِينَ هُمْ أَرَاذِلُنَا بَادِيَ الرَّأْيِ وَمَا نَرَىٰ لَكُمْ عَلَيْنَا مِنْ فَضْلٍ بَلْ نَظُنُّكُمْ كَاذِبِينَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
But the chiefs of the Unbelievers among his people said: "We see (in) thee nothing but a man like ourselves: Nor do we see that any follow thee but the meanest among us, in judgment immature: Nor do we see in you (all) any merit above us: in fact we thing ye are liars!"
[ Saheeh International ]
So the eminent among those who disbelieved from his people said, "We do not see you but as a man like ourselves, and we do not see you followed except by those who are the lowest of us [and] at first suggestion. And we do not see in you over us any merit; rather, we think you are liars."
Tafseer Commentary

1518 The Unbelievers were impelled by three powerful human motives of evil to resist Grace: (1) jealousy of other men; they said, "Why, you are no better than ourselves;" half perceiving the Prophet's superiority, and half ignoring it; (2) contempt of the weak and lowly, who are often better intellectually, morally, and spiritually; they said, "We cannot believe or do what these fellows, our inferiors in social rank, believe or do!"; (3) arrogance and self-sufficiency, which is a vice cognate to (2), looked at from a different angle; they said, "We are really better than the lot of you!" Now the claim made on behalf of Allah's Message attacked all these three attitudes. And all they could say against it was to abuse it impatiently, and call it a lie.


11:28
[ Original ]
قَالَ يَا قَوْمِ أَرَأَيْتُمْ إِنْ كُنْتُ عَلَىٰ بَيِّنَةٍ مِنْ رَبِّي وَآتَانِي رَحْمَةً مِنْ عِنْدِهِ فَعُمِّيَتْ عَلَيْكُمْ أَنُلْزِمُكُمُوهَا وَأَنْتُمْ لَهَا كَارِهُونَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
He said: "O my people! See ye if (it be that) I have a Clear Sign from my Lord, and that He hath sent Mercy unto me from His own presence, but that the Mercy hath been obscured from your sight? shall we compel you to accept it when ye are averse to it?
[ Saheeh International ]
He said, "O my people have you considered: if I should be upon clear evidence from my Lord while He has given me mercy from Himself but it has been made unapparent to you, should we force it upon you while you are averse to it?
Tafseer Commentary

1519 Noah's answer (like that of the Prophet of Allah who spoke in later ages in Makkah and Madinah) is a pattern of humility, gentleness, firmness, persuasiveness, truth, and love for his own people. First, he meekly (not exultingly) informs them that he has got a Message from Allah. Secondly, he tells them that it is a Message of Mercy even in its warning, though in their arrogance the Mercy may be hidden from them. Thirdly, he tells them plainly that there can be no compulsion in Religion: but will they not accept with goodwill what is for their own benefit? He pleads with them as one of their own.


11:29
[ Original ]
وَيَا قَوْمِ لَا أَسْأَلُكُمْ عَلَيْهِ مَالًا ۖ إِنْ أَجْرِيَ إِلَّا عَلَى اللَّهِ ۚ وَمَا أَنَا بِطَارِدِ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا ۚ إِنَّهُمْ مُلَاقُو رَبِّهِمْ وَلَٰكِنِّي أَرَاكُمْ قَوْمًا تَجْهَلُونَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
"And O my people! I ask you for no wealth in return: my reward is from none but Allah. But I will not drive away (in contempt) those who believe: for verily they are to meet their Lord, and ye I see are the ignorant ones!
[ Saheeh International ]
And O my people, I ask not of you for it any wealth. My reward is not but from Allah. And I am not one to drive away those who have believed. Indeed, they will meet their Lord, but I see that you are a people behaving ignorantly.
Tafseer Commentary

1520 The fourth point in Noah's address meets their accusation that he was a liar, implying that he was serving some selfish end of his own: on the contrary, he says, he seeks no reward from them but will bear any insults they heap on him, for he looks to Allah rather than men. But, fifthly if they insult the poor and needy who come to him in Faith, and think that he would send them away in order to attract the great ones of the land, he tells them plainly that they are mistaken. In fact, (sixthly), he has no hesitation in telling the blunt truth that they are the ignorant ones, and not the poor who came to seek Allah's Truth!


11:30
[ Original ]
وَيَا قَوْمِ مَنْ يَنْصُرُنِي مِنَ اللَّهِ إِنْ طَرَدْتُهُمْ ۚ أَفَلَا تَذَكَّرُونَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
"And O my people! who would help me against Allah if I drove them away? Will ye not then take heed?
[ Saheeh International ]
And O my people, who would protect me from Allah if I drove them away? Then will you not be reminded?
Tafseer Commentary

1521 But (seventhly) again he pleads, with as much earnestness as ever, that he is one of themselves, and just doing his truest duty. Would they have him do less? Indeed, would they not themselves see the Truth and come into the goodly company of Believers?


11:31
[ Original ]
وَلَا أَقُولُ لَكُمْ عِنْدِي خَزَائِنُ اللَّهِ وَلَا أَعْلَمُ الْغَيْبَ وَلَا أَقُولُ إِنِّي مَلَكٌ وَلَا أَقُولُ لِلَّذِينَ تَزْدَرِي أَعْيُنُكُمْ لَنْ يُؤْتِيَهُمُ اللَّهُ خَيْرًا ۖ اللَّهُ أَعْلَمُ بِمَا فِي أَنْفُسِهِمْ ۖ إِنِّي إِذًا لَمِنَ الظَّالِمِينَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
"I tell you not that with me are the Treasures of Allah, nor do I know what is hidden, nor claim I to be an angel. Nor yet do I say, of those whom your eyes do despise that Allah will not grant them (all) that is good: Allah knoweth best what is in their souls: I should, if I did, indeed be a wrong-doer."
[ Saheeh International ]
And I do not tell you that I have the depositories [containing the provision] of Allah or that I know the unseen, nor do I tell you that I am an angel, nor do I say of those upon whom your eyes look down that Allah will never grant them any good. Allah is most knowing of what is within their souls. Indeed, I would then be among the wrongdoers."
Tafseer Commentary

1522 The eighth point that Noah urges is that he is not a mere vulgar soothsayer pretending to reveal secrets not worth knowing, nor an angel living in another world, with no ties to them. He is their real well-wisher, delivering a true Message from Allah.

1523 Cf. 6:50 and n. 867.

1524 But Noah will not close his argument without defending the men of Faith, whom the Chiefs despise because they are lacking in worldly goods. He tells them plainly that Allah perhaps sees in them something in which they, the arrogant Chiefs, are lacking. Their spiritual faculties can only be appreciated truly by Him to Whom all the secrets of the spirit are open. But he, Noah, must declare boldly his own Faith, and this is the ninth point in his argument.


11:32
[ Original ]
قَالُوا يَا نُوحُ قَدْ جَادَلْتَنَا فَأَكْثَرْتَ جِدَالَنَا فَأْتِنَا بِمَا تَعِدُنَا إِنْ كُنْتَ مِنَ الصَّادِقِينَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
They said: "O Noah! thou hast disputed with us, and (much) hast thou prolonged the dispute with us: now bring upon us what thou threatenest us with, if thou speakest the truth!?"
[ Saheeh International ]
They said, "O Noah, you have disputed us and been frequent in dispute of us. So bring us what you threaten us, if you should be of the truthful."
Tafseer Commentary

1525 To Noah's address the worldly Chiefs give a characteristic reply. In its aggressive spirit it is the very antithesis of the gentle remonstrances of Noah. Because he had gently and patiently argued with them, they impatiently accuse him of "disputing with them" and "prolonging the dispute". They are unable to deal with his points. So they arrogantly throw out their challenge, which is a compound of hectoring insolence, unreasoning skepticism, and biting irony. "You foretell disaster to us if we don't mend our ways! Let us see you bring it on! Now, if you please! Or shall we have to call you a liar?"


11:33
[ Original ]
قَالَ إِنَّمَا يَأْتِيكُمْ بِهِ اللَّهُ إِنْ شَاءَ وَمَا أَنْتُمْ بِمُعْجِزِينَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
He said: "Truly, Allah will bring it on you if He wills,- and then, ye will not be able to frustrate it!
[ Saheeh International ]
He said, "Allah will only bring it to you if He wills, and you will not cause [Him] failure.
Tafseer Commentary

1526 To the blasphemous challenge addressed to Noah his only answer could be: "I never claimed that I could punish you. All punishment is in the hands of Allah, and He knows best when His punishment will descend. But this I can tell you! His punishment is sure if you do not repent, and when it comes, you will not be able to ward it off!"


11:34
[ Original ]
وَلَا يَنْفَعُكُمْ نُصْحِي إِنْ أَرَدْتُ أَنْ أَنْصَحَ لَكُمْ إِنْ كَانَ اللَّهُ يُرِيدُ أَنْ يُغْوِيَكُمْ ۚ هُوَ رَبُّكُمْ وَإِلَيْهِ تُرْجَعُونَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
"Of no profit will be my counsel to you, much as I desire to give you (good) counsel, if it be that Allah willeth to leave you astray: He is your Lord! and to Him will ye return!"
[ Saheeh International ]
And my advice will not benefit you - although I wished to advise you - If Allah should intend to put you in error. He is your Lord, and to Him you will be returned."
Tafseer Commentary

1527 But Noah's heart bleeds for his people. They are preparing their own undoing! All his efforts are to be vain! Obstinate as they are, Allah's grace must be withdrawn, and then who can help them, and what use is any counsel? But again he will try to remind them of their Lord, and turn their face to Him. For their ultimate return to His Judgement Seat is certain, to answer for their conduct.


11:35
[ Original ]
أَمْ يَقُولُونَ افْتَرَاهُ ۖ قُلْ إِنِ افْتَرَيْتُهُ فَعَلَيَّ إِجْرَامِي وَأَنَا بَرِيءٌ مِمَّا تُجْرِمُونَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
Or do they say, "He has forged it"? Say: "If I had forged it, on me were my sin! and I am free of the sins of which ye are guilty!
[ Saheeh International ]
Or do they say [about Prophet Muhammad], "He invented it"? Say, "If I have invented it, then upon me is [the consequence of] my crime; but I am innocent of what [crimes] you commit."
Tafseer Commentary

1528 'The fine narrative of dramatic power is here interrupted by a verse which shows that the story of Noah is also a parable for the time and the ministry of Muhammad, the Prophet. The wonderful force and aptness of the story cannot be denied. The enemy therefore turns and says, "Oh! but you invented it!" The answer is, "No! but it is Allah's own truth! You may be accustomed to dealing in falsehoods, but I protest that T am free from such sins." The place of this verse here corresponds to the place of verse 49 at the end of the next Section. While understanding this verse to refer to al Mustafa, as most of the accepted Commentators understand it, it is possible also, I think, to read it into the story of Noah, for all Prophets have similar spiritual experiences.


11:36
[ Original ]
وَأُوحِيَ إِلَىٰ نُوحٍ أَنَّهُ لَنْ يُؤْمِنَ مِنْ قَوْمِكَ إِلَّا مَنْ قَدْ آمَنَ فَلَا تَبْتَئِسْ بِمَا كَانُوا يَفْعَلُونَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
It was revealed to Noah: "None of thy people will believe except those who have believed already! So grieve no longer over their (evil) deeds.
[ Saheeh International ]
And it was revealed to Noah that, "No one will believe from your people except those who have already believed, so do not be distressed by what they have been doing.
Tafseer Commentary

1529 The story of Noah is resumed. A point was reached, when it was clear that there was no hope of saving the sinners, who were courting their own destruction. It was to be a great Flood. So Noah was ordered to construct a great Ark or Ship, not a sailing ship, but a heavy vessel to remain afloat in the Flood, so that the righteous could be saved in it.


11:37
[ Original ]
وَاصْنَعِ الْفُلْكَ بِأَعْيُنِنَا وَوَحْيِنَا وَلَا تُخَاطِبْنِي فِي الَّذِينَ ظَلَمُوا ۚ إِنَّهُمْ مُغْرَقُونَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
"But construct an Ark under Our eyes and Our inspiration, and address Me no (further) on behalf of those who are in sin: for they are about to be overwhelmed (in the Flood)."
[ Saheeh International ]
And construct the ship under Our observation and Our inspiration and do not address Me concerning those who have wronged; indeed, they are [to be] drowned."
Tafseer Commentary

1530 It was to be built under the special instructions of Allah, to serve the special purpose it was intended to serve.


11:38
[ Original ]
وَيَصْنَعُ الْفُلْكَ وَكُلَّمَا مَرَّ عَلَيْهِ مَلَأٌ مِنْ قَوْمِهِ سَخِرُوا مِنْهُ ۚ قَالَ إِنْ تَسْخَرُوا مِنَّا فَإِنَّا نَسْخَرُ مِنْكُمْ كَمَا تَسْخَرُونَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
Forthwith he (starts) constructing the Ark: Every time that the chiefs of his people passed by him, they threw ridicule on him. He said: "If ye ridicule us now, we (in our turn) can look down on you with ridicule likewise!
[ Saheeh International ]
And he constructed the ship, and whenever an assembly of the eminent of his people passed by him, they ridiculed him. He said, "If you ridicule us, then we will ridicule you just as you ridicule.
Tafseer Commentary

1531 The ridicule of the sinners, from their own point of view, was natural. Here was a preacher turned carpenter! Here was a plain in the higher reaches of the Mesopotamian basin, drained by the majestic Tigris, over 800 to 900 miles from the sea (the Persian Gulf ) in a straight line! Yet he talks of a flood like the Sea! All material civilisations pride themselves on their Public Works and their drainage schemes. And here was a fellow relying on Allah! But did not their narrow pride seem ridiculous also to the Prophet of Allah! Here were men steeped in sin and insolence! And they pit themselves against the power and the promise of Allah! I Truly a contemptible race is man!

1532 The Arabic Aorist may be construed either by the present tense or the future tense, and both make good sense here. Following Zamakhshari, I construe in the present tense, because the future is so tragic for the sinners. For the time being the worldly ones looked down on the Believers as they always do; but the Believers relied on Allah, and pitied their critics for knowing no better!-for their arrogance was really ridiculous.


11:39
[ Original ]
فَسَوْفَ تَعْلَمُونَ مَنْ يَأْتِيهِ عَذَابٌ يُخْزِيهِ وَيَحِلُّ عَلَيْهِ عَذَابٌ مُقِيمٌ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
"But soon will ye know who it is on whom will descend a penalty that will cover them with shame,- on whom will be unloosed a penalty lasting:"
[ Saheeh International ]
And you are going to know who will get a punishment that will disgrace him [on earth] and upon whom will descend an enduring punishment [in the Hereafter]."

11:40
[ Original ]
حَتَّىٰ إِذَا جَاءَ أَمْرُنَا وَفَارَ التَّنُّورُ قُلْنَا احْمِلْ فِيهَا مِنْ كُلٍّ زَوْجَيْنِ اثْنَيْنِ وَأَهْلَكَ إِلَّا مَنْ سَبَقَ عَلَيْهِ الْقَوْلُ وَمَنْ آمَنَ ۚ وَمَا آمَنَ مَعَهُ إِلَّا قَلِيلٌ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
At length, behold! there came Our command, and the fountains of the earth gushed forth! We said: "Embark therein, of each kind two, male and female, and your family - except those against whom the word has already gone forth,- and the Believers." but only a few believed with him.
[ Saheeh International ]
[So it was], until when Our command came and the oven overflowed, We said, "Load upon the ship of each [creature] two mates and your family, except those about whom the word has preceded, and [include] whoever has believed." But none had believed with him, except a few.
Tafseer Commentary

1533 Far al tannur. Two interpretations have been given: (1) the fountains or the springs on the surface of the earth bubbled over or gushed forth; or (2) the oven (of Allah's Wrath) boiled over. The former has the weight of the best authority behind it and I prefer it. Moreover, the same phrase occurs in 23:27 , where it is a clause coordinated (as here) with the coming of Allah's Command. These two passages may be compared with 54:11-12, where it is said that water poured forth from the skies and gushed forth from the springs. This double action is familiar to anyone who has seen floods on a large scale. The rain from above would saturate the great Ararat Plateau, and give great force to the springs and fountains in the valley of the Tigris below.

1534 Zawjayn: the dual number refers to the two individuals in each pair of opposite sexes. Some of the most authoritative Commentators (e.g., Imam Razi) construe it in this sense, though others construe it to mean two pairs of each species.

1535 A disobedient and recalcitrant son (or step-son or grandson) of Noah is mentioned below ( 11:42-43, 11:45-46). A member of the family, who breaks away from the traditions of the family in things that matter, ceases to share in the privileges of the family.


11:41
[ Original ]
وَقَالَ ارْكَبُوا فِيهَا بِسْمِ اللَّهِ مَجْرَاهَا وَمُرْسَاهَا ۚ إِنَّ رَبِّي لَغَفُورٌ رَحِيمٌ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
So he said: "Embark ye on the Ark, In the name of Allah, whether it move or be at rest! For my Lord is, be sure, Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful!"
[ Saheeh International ]
And [Noah] said, "Embark therein; in the name of Allah is its course and its anchorage. Indeed, my Lord is Forgiving and Merciful."

11:42
[ Original ]
وَهِيَ تَجْرِي بِهِمْ فِي مَوْجٍ كَالْجِبَالِ وَنَادَىٰ نُوحٌ ابْنَهُ وَكَانَ فِي مَعْزِلٍ يَا بُنَيَّ ارْكَبْ مَعَنَا وَلَا تَكُنْ مَعَ الْكَافِرِينَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
So the Ark floated with them on the waves (towering) like mountains, and Noah called out to his son, who had separated himself (from the rest): "O my son! embark with us, and be not with the unbelievers!"
[ Saheeh International ]
And it sailed with them through waves like mountains, and Noah called to his son who was apart [from them], "O my son, come aboard with us and be not with the disbelievers."
Tafseer Commentary

1536 The simile of mountains applies to the waves, which were mountain highliterally, for the peaks were being submerged.


11:43
[ Original ]
قَالَ سَآوِي إِلَىٰ جَبَلٍ يَعْصِمُنِي مِنَ الْمَاءِ ۚ قَالَ لَا عَاصِمَ الْيَوْمَ مِنْ أَمْرِ اللَّهِ إِلَّا مَنْ رَحِمَ ۚ وَحَالَ بَيْنَهُمَا الْمَوْجُ فَكَانَ مِنَ الْمُغْرَقِينَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
The son replied: "I will betake myself to some mountain: it will save me from the water." Noah said: "This day nothing can save, from the command of Allah, any but those on whom He hath mercy! "And the waves came between them, and the son was among those overwhelmed in the Flood.
[ Saheeh International ]
[But] he said, "I will take refuge on a mountain to protect me from the water." [Noah] said, "There is no protector today from the decree of Allah, except for whom He gives mercy." And the waves came between them, and he was among the drowned.
Tafseer Commentary

1537 The Unbelievers refuse to believe in Allah, but have great faith in material things! This young man was going to save himself on mountain peaks, not knowing that the peaks were themselves being submerged.


11:44
[ Original ]
وَقِيلَ يَا أَرْضُ ابْلَعِي مَاءَكِ وَيَا سَمَاءُ أَقْلِعِي وَغِيضَ الْمَاءُ وَقُضِيَ الْأَمْرُ وَاسْتَوَتْ عَلَى الْجُودِيِّ ۖ وَقِيلَ بُعْدًا لِلْقَوْمِ الظَّالِمِينَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
Then the word went forth: "O earth! swallow up thy water, and O sky! Withhold (thy rain)!" and the water abated, and the matter was ended. The Ark rested on Mount Judi, and the word went forth: "Away with those who do wrong!"
[ Saheeh International ]
And it was said, "O earth, swallow your water, and O sky, withhold [your rain]." And the water subsided, and the matter was accomplished, and the ship came to rest on the [mountain of] Judiyy. And it was said, "Away with the wrongdoing people."
Tafseer Commentary

1538 A wonderful passage. The whole picture is painted in just a few words. The chain of material facts are linked together, not only in their relations to each other, but also in their relation to the spiritual forces (hat control them, and the spiritual consequences of Sin and wrongdoing. The drowning in the material sense was the last part of the Penalty. A whole new world came into existence after the Deluge. (R).

1539 Let us get a little idea of the geography of the place. The letters JiM, Ba', and Kaf are philologically interchangeable, and J udi, Gudi", Kudi are sounds that can pass into each other. There is no doubt that the name is connected with the name "Kurd", in which the letter ris a later interpolation, for the oldest Sumerian records name a people called Kuti or Gutu as holding the middle Tigris region not later than 2000 B.C. (see E.B., Kurdistan). That region comprises the modern Turkish district of Bohtan, in which Jabal Judi is situated (near the frontiers of modern Turkey , modern Iraq , and modern Syria ), and the town of Jazirah ibn 'Umar, (on the present Turco-Syrian frontier), and it extends into Iraq and Iran . The great mountain mass of the Ararat plateau dominates this district. This mountain system "is unique in the Old World in containing great sheets of water that are bitter lakes without outlets, Lake Van and Lake Urumiya being the chief (E.B., Asia). Such would be the very region for a stupendous Deluge if the usual scanty rainfall were to be changed into a very heavy downpour. A glacier damming of Lake Van in the Ice Age would have produced the same result. The region has many local traditions connected with Noah and the Flood. The Biblical legend of Mount Ararat being the resting place of Noah's Ark is hardly plausible, seeing that the highest peak of Ararat is over 16,000 feet high. If it means one of the lower peaks of the Ararat system, it agrees with the Muslim tradition about Mount Judi (or Gudi), and this is in accordance with the oldest and best local traditions. These traditions are accepted by J osephus, by the Nestorian Christians, and indeed by all the Eastern Christians and Jews, and they are the best in touch with local traditions. See (Viscount) J Bryce. " Transcaucasia and Ararat" 4th ed., 1896, p. 216.


11:45
[ Original ]
وَنَادَىٰ نُوحٌ رَبَّهُ فَقَالَ رَبِّ إِنَّ ابْنِي مِنْ أَهْلِي وَإِنَّ وَعْدَكَ الْحَقُّ وَأَنْتَ أَحْكَمُ الْحَاكِمِينَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
And Noah called upon his Lord, and said: "O my Lord! surely my son is of my family! and Thy promise is true, and Thou art the justest of Judges!"
[ Saheeh International ]
And Noah called to his Lord and said, "My Lord, indeed my son is of my family; and indeed, Your promise is true; and You are the most just of judges!"

11:46
[ Original ]
قَالَ يَا نُوحُ إِنَّهُ لَيْسَ مِنْ أَهْلِكَ ۖ إِنَّهُ عَمَلٌ غَيْرُ صَالِحٍ ۖ فَلَا تَسْأَلْنِ مَا لَيْسَ لَكَ بِهِ عِلْمٌ ۖ إِنِّي أَعِظُكَ أَنْ تَكُونَ مِنَ الْجَاهِلِينَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
He said: "O Noah! He is not of thy family: For his conduct is unrighteous. So ask not of Me that of which thou hast no knowledge! I give thee counsel, lest thou act like the ignorant!"
[ Saheeh International ]
He said, "O Noah, indeed he is not of your family; indeed, he is [one whose] work was other than righteous, so ask Me not for that about which you have no knowledge. Indeed, I advise you, lest you be among the ignorant."
Tafseer Commentary

1540 See n. 5135 above. Like all Prophets of Allah, Noah was kind-hearted, but he is told that there can be no compromise with evil. And Noah acknowledges the reproof. There was a wife of Noah, who was also an unbelieving woman (66:10), and she suffered the fate of Unbelievers.


11:47
[ Original ]
قَالَ رَبِّ إِنِّي أَعُوذُ بِكَ أَنْ أَسْأَلَكَ مَا لَيْسَ لِي بِهِ عِلْمٌ ۖ وَإِلَّا تَغْفِرْ لِي وَتَرْحَمْنِي أَكُنْ مِنَ الْخَاسِرِينَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
Noah said: "O my Lord! I do seek refuge with Thee, lest I ask Thee for that of which I have no knowledge. And unless thou forgive me and have Mercy on me, I should indeed be lost!"
[ Saheeh International ]
[Noah] said, "My Lord, I seek refuge in You from asking that of which I have no knowledge. And unless You forgive me and have mercy upon me, I will be among the losers."
Tafseer Commentary

1541 Noah, in his natural affection and respect for ties of relationship, was overcome with human weakness in wishing to reverse the law of spiritual Justice. It was not sin but ignorance. His ignorance was corrected by divine inspiration, and he immediately saw the full Truth, acknowledged his error, and asked for Allah's forgiveness and mercy. This is the standard set for us all.


11:48
[ Original ]
قِيلَ يَا نُوحُ اهْبِطْ بِسَلَامٍ مِنَّا وَبَرَكَاتٍ عَلَيْكَ وَعَلَىٰ أُمَمٍ مِمَّنْ مَعَكَ ۚ وَأُمَمٌ سَنُمَتِّعُهُمْ ثُمَّ يَمَسُّهُمْ مِنَّا عَذَابٌ أَلِيمٌ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
The word came: "O Noah! Come down (from the Ark) with peace from Us, and blessing on thee and on some of the peoples (who will spring) from those with thee: but (there will be other) peoples to whom We shall grant their pleasures (for a time), but in the end will a grievous penalty reach them from Us."
[ Saheeh International ]
It was said, "O Noah, disembark in security from Us and blessings upon you and upon nations [descending] from those with you. But other nations [of them] We will grant enjoyment; then there will touch them from Us a painful punishment."
Tafseer Commentary

1542 Cf. 2:126.

1543 Those who truly seek Allah's light and guidance and sincerely bend their will to His Will are freely admitted to Allah's grace. Notwithstanding any human weaknesses in them, they are advanced higher in the spiritual stage on account of their Faith, Trust, and Striving after Right. They are given Allah's Peace, which gives the soul true calmness and strength, and all the blessings that flow from spiritual life. This was given not only to Noah and his family but to all the righteous people who were saved with him. And their descendants were also promised those blessings on condition of righteousness. But some of them fell from grace, as we know in history. Allah's grace is not a social or family privilege. Each people and each individual must earnestly strive for it and earn it.


11:49
[ Original ]
تِلْكَ مِنْ أَنْبَاءِ الْغَيْبِ نُوحِيهَا إِلَيْكَ ۖ مَا كُنْتَ تَعْلَمُهَا أَنْتَ وَلَا قَوْمُكَ مِنْ قَبْلِ هَٰذَا ۖ فَاصْبِرْ ۖ إِنَّ الْعَاقِبَةَ لِلْمُتَّقِينَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
Such are some of the stories of the unseen, which We have revealed unto thee: before this, neither thou nor thy people knew them. So persevere patiently: for the End is for those who are righteous.
[ Saheeh International ]
That is from the news of the unseen which We reveal to you, [O Muhammad]. You knew it not, neither you nor your people, before this. So be patient; indeed, the [best] outcome is for the righteous.
Tafseer Commentary

1544 Cf. n. 1528 to 9:35. The sum of the whole matter is that the righteous, who work for Allah and their fellow-men, may be traduced, insulted, and persecuted. But they will be sustained by Allah's Mercy. They must go on working patiently, for the End will all be for them and their Cause.


11:50
[ Original ]
وَإِلَىٰ عَادٍ أَخَاهُمْ هُودًا ۚ قَالَ يَا قَوْمِ اعْبُدُوا اللَّهَ مَا لَكُمْ مِنْ إِلَٰهٍ غَيْرُهُ ۖ إِنْ أَنْتُمْ إِلَّا مُفْتَرُونَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
To the 'Ad People (We sent) Hud, one of their own brethren. He said: "O my people! worship Allah. ye have no other god but Him. (Your other gods) ye do nothing but invent!
[ Saheeh International ]
And to 'Aad [We sent] their brother Hud. He said, "O my people, worship Allah; you have no deity other than Him. You are not but inventors [of falsehood].
Tafseer Commentary

1545 Cf. the story of Hud the Messenger to the 'Ad People, in 7:65-72. There the argument was how other Peoples treated their prophets as the Makkans were treating al Mustafa. Here we see another point emphasised: the insolence of 'Ad in obstinately adhering to false gods after the true God had been preached to them, Allah's long-suffering grace to them, and finally Allah's justice in bringing them to book while the righteous were saved. The locality in which 'Ad flourished is indicated in n. 1040 to 7:65.


11:51
[ Original ]
يَا قَوْمِ لَا أَسْأَلُكُمْ عَلَيْهِ أَجْرًا ۖ إِنْ أَجْرِيَ إِلَّا عَلَى الَّذِي فَطَرَنِي ۚ أَفَلَا تَعْقِلُونَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
"O my people! I ask of you no reward for this (Message). My reward is from none but Him who created me: Will ye not then understand?
[ Saheeh International ]
O my people, I do not ask you for it any reward. My reward is only from the one who created me. Then will you not reason?

11:52
[ Original ]
وَيَا قَوْمِ اسْتَغْفِرُوا رَبَّكُمْ ثُمَّ تُوبُوا إِلَيْهِ يُرْسِلِ السَّمَاءَ عَلَيْكُمْ مِدْرَارًا وَيَزِدْكُمْ قُوَّةً إِلَىٰ قُوَّتِكُمْ وَلَا تَتَوَلَّوْا مُجْرِمِينَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
"And O my people! Ask forgiveness of your Lord, and turn to Him (in repentance): He will send you the skies pouring abundant rain, and add strength to your strength: so turn ye not back in sin!"
[ Saheeh International ]
And O my people, ask forgiveness of your Lord and then repent to Him. He will send [rain from] the sky upon you in showers and increase you in strength [added] to your strength. And do not turn away, [being] criminals."
Tafseer Commentary

1546 The beautiful metaphor about the skies coming down with rain has been obscured unnecessarily in most translations. The country of 'Ad was an arid country, and rain was the greatest blessing they could receive. We can imagine this being said in a time of famine, when the people performed all sorts of superstitious rites and invocations instead of turning to the true God in faith and repentance. Further, when we remember that there were, in this tract in ancient times, dams like that at Ma'rib, for the storage of rain water, the effect is still further heightened in pointing to Allah's care and mercy in His dealing with men.

1547 Adding strength to strength may refer to an increase of population, as some Commentators think. While other parts of Arabia were sparsely populated, the irrigated lands of 'A d supported a comparatively dense population and added to their natural strength in the arts of peace and war. But the term used is perfectly general. They were a powerful people in their time. If they obeyed Allah and followed the law of righteousness, they would be still more powerful, for "righteousness exalteth a nation."


11:53
[ Original ]
قَالُوا يَا هُودُ مَا جِئْتَنَا بِبَيِّنَةٍ وَمَا نَحْنُ بِتَارِكِي آلِهَتِنَا عَنْ قَوْلِكَ وَمَا نَحْنُ لَكَ بِمُؤْمِنِينَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
They said: "O Hud! No Clear (Sign) that hast thou brought us, and we are not the ones to desert our gods on thy word! Nor shall we believe in thee!
[ Saheeh International ]
They said, "O Hud, you have not brought us clear evidence, and we are not ones to leave our gods on your say-so. Nor are we believers in you.
Tafseer Commentary

1548 The argument of the Unbelievers is practically this: "We are not convinced by you; we don't want to be convinced: we think you are a liar-or perhaps a fool!" (See next verse).


11:54
[ Original ]
إِنْ نَقُولُ إِلَّا اعْتَرَاكَ بَعْضُ آلِهَتِنَا بِسُوءٍ ۗ قَالَ إِنِّي أُشْهِدُ اللَّهَ وَاشْهَدُوا أَنِّي بَرِيءٌ مِمَّا تُشْرِكُونَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
"We say nothing but that (perhaps) some of our gods may have seized thee with imbecility." He said: "I call Allah to witness, and do ye bear witness, that I am free from the sin of ascribing, to Him,
[ Saheeh International ]
We only say that some of our gods have possessed you with evil." He said, "Indeed, I call Allah to witness, and witness [yourselves] that I am free from whatever you associate with Allah
Tafseer Commentary

1549 See n. 1548 above. Continuing their argument, the Unbelievers make a show of making all charitable allowances for Hud, but in reality cut him to the quick by bringing in their false gods. "To be quite polite," said they, "we will not say that you are exactly a liar! Perhaps you have been touched with imbecility! Ah yes! You rail against what you call our false gods! Some of them have paid you out, and made you a fool! Ha! ha!" This mockery is even worse than their other false accusations. For it sets up false gods against the One True God, even in dealing with Hud. So Hud replies, with spirit and indignation: "At least keep Allah's name out of your futile talk! You know as well as I do, that I worship the One True God! You pretend that your false gods can smite a true Prophet of Allah! I accept the challenge. Scheme and plot against me as you may, all of you-you and your gods! See if you have any power! I ask for no quarter from you! My trust is in Allah."


11:55
[ Original ]
مِنْ دُونِهِ ۖ فَكِيدُونِي جَمِيعًا ثُمَّ لَا تُنْظِرُونِ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
"Other gods as partners! so scheme (your worst) against me, all of you, and give me no respite.
[ Saheeh International ]
Other than Him. So plot against me all together; then do not give me respite.
Tafseer Commentary

1550 Cf. 7:195 and n. 1168.


11:56
[ Original ]
إِنِّي تَوَكَّلْتُ عَلَى اللَّهِ رَبِّي وَرَبِّكُمْ ۚ مَا مِنْ دَابَّةٍ إِلَّا هُوَ آخِذٌ بِنَاصِيَتِهَا ۚ إِنَّ رَبِّي عَلَىٰ صِرَاطٍ مُسْتَقِيمٍ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
"I put my trust in Allah, My Lord and your Lord! There is not a moving creature, but He hath grasp of its forelock. Verily, it is my Lord that is on a straight Path.
[ Saheeh International ]
Indeed, I have relied upon Allah, my Lord and your Lord. There is no creature but that He holds its forelock. Indeed, my Lord is on a path [that is] straight."
Tafseer Commentary

1551 Grasp of the forelock: an Arabic idiom, referring to a horse's forelock. The man who grasps it has complete power over the horse, and for the horse the forelock is as it were the crown of his beauty, the sum of his power of selfassertion. So Allah's power over all creatures is unlimited and no one can withstand His decree. Cf. 96:15-16.

1552 That is, the standard of all virtue and righteousness is in the Will of Allah, the Universal Will that controls all things in goodness and justice. You are on a crooked Path. Allah's Path is a straight Path.


11:57
[ Original ]
فَإِنْ تَوَلَّوْا فَقَدْ أَبْلَغْتُكُمْ مَا أُرْسِلْتُ بِهِ إِلَيْكُمْ ۚ وَيَسْتَخْلِفُ رَبِّي قَوْمًا غَيْرَكُمْ وَلَا تَضُرُّونَهُ شَيْئًا ۚ إِنَّ رَبِّي عَلَىٰ كُلِّ شَيْءٍ حَفِيظٌ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
"If ye turn away,- I (at least) have conveyed the Message with which I was sent to you. My Lord will make another people to succeed you, and you will not harm Him in the least. For my Lord hath care and watch over all things."
[ Saheeh International ]
But if they turn away, [say], "I have already conveyed that with which I was sent to you. My Lord will give succession to a people other than you, and you will not harm Him at all. Indeed my Lord is, over all things, Guardian."
Tafseer Commentary

1553 Hud was dealing with a people of pride and obstinate rebellion. He tells them that their conduct will only recoil on themselves. It can do no harm to Allah or in any way frustrate the beneficent Plan of Allah. He will only put some other people in their place to carry out His Plan. That Plan is referred to in the next sentence as "care and watch" over all his Creation.


11:58
[ Original ]
وَلَمَّا جَاءَ أَمْرُنَا نَجَّيْنَا هُودًا وَالَّذِينَ آمَنُوا مَعَهُ بِرَحْمَةٍ مِنَّا وَنَجَّيْنَاهُمْ مِنْ عَذَابٍ غَلِيظٍ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
So when Our decree issued, We saved Hud and those who believed with him, by (special) Grace from Ourselves: We saved them from a severe penalty.
[ Saheeh International ]
And when Our command came, We saved Hud and those who believed with him, by mercy from Us; and We saved them from a harsh punishment.
Tafseer Commentary

1554 A few just men might suffer for the iniquities of the many. But Allah's Plan is perfect and eventually saves His own people by special Grace, if they have Faith and Trust in Him.


11:59
[ Original ]
وَتِلْكَ عَادٌ ۖ جَحَدُوا بِآيَاتِ رَبِّهِمْ وَعَصَوْا رُسُلَهُ وَاتَّبَعُوا أَمْرَ كُلِّ جَبَّارٍ عَنِيدٍ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
Such were the 'Ad People: they rejected the Signs of their Lord and Cherisher; disobeyed His messengers; And followed the command of every powerful, obstinate Transgressor.
[ Saheeh International ]
And that was 'Aad, who rejected the signs of their Lord and disobeyed His messengers and followed the order of every obstinate tyrant.
Tafseer Commentary

1555 Instead of following the beneficent Lord who cherished them, they followed ever)' rebel against Allah's Law, if he only obtained a little power to dazzle them, (Cf. 14:15 ).


11:60
[ Original ]
وَأُتْبِعُوا فِي هَٰذِهِ الدُّنْيَا لَعْنَةً وَيَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ ۗ أَلَا إِنَّ عَادًا كَفَرُوا رَبَّهُمْ ۗ أَلَا بُعْدًا لِعَادٍ قَوْمِ هُودٍ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
And they were pursued by a Curse in this life,- and on the Day of Judgment. Ah! Behold! for the 'Ad rejected their Lord and Cherisher! Ah! Behold! removed (from sight) were 'Ad the people of Hud!
[ Saheeh International ]
And they were [therefore] followed in this world with a curse and [as well] on the Day of Resurrection. Unquestionably, 'Aad denied their Lord; then away with 'Aad, the people of Hud.

11:61
[ Original ]
وَإِلَىٰ ثَمُودَ أَخَاهُمْ صَالِحًا ۚ قَالَ يَا قَوْمِ اعْبُدُوا اللَّهَ مَا لَكُمْ مِنْ إِلَٰهٍ غَيْرُهُ ۖ هُوَ أَنْشَأَكُمْ مِنَ الْأَرْضِ وَاسْتَعْمَرَكُمْ فِيهَا فَاسْتَغْفِرُوهُ ثُمَّ تُوبُوا إِلَيْهِ ۚ إِنَّ رَبِّي قَرِيبٌ مُجِيبٌ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
To the Thamud People (We sent) Salih, one of their own brethren. He said: "O my people! Worship Allah. ye have no other god but Him. It is He Who hath produced you from the earth and settled you therein: then ask forgiveness of Him, and turn to Him (in repentance): for my Lord is (always) near, ready to answer."
[ Saheeh International ]
And to Thamud [We sent] their brother Salih. He said, "O my people, worship Allah; you have no deity other than Him. He has produced you from the earth and settled you in it, so ask forgiveness of Him and then repent to Him. Indeed, my Lord is near and responsive."
Tafseer Commentary

1556 The story of Salih and the Thamud people has been told from another point of view in 7:73-79. The difference in the point of view there and here is the same as in the story of Hud: see n. 1545. to 11:50 . Note how the story now is the same, and yet new points and details are brought out to illustrate each new argument. Note, also, how the besetting sin of 'Ad-pride and obstinacy-is distinguished from the besetting sin of Thamud- the oppression of the poor, as illustrated by the test case and symbol of the she-camel: see n. 104-4 to 7:73. All sin is in a sense pride and rebellion; yet sins take particular hues in different circumstances, and these colours are brought out as in a most artistically painted picture-with the greatest economy of words and the most piercing analysis of motives. For the locality and history of Thamud, see n. 1043 to 7:73.

1557 For Ansha 'a as a process of creation see n. 923 to 6:98 and the further references given there. As to his body, man has been produced from earth or clay, and his settlement on earth is a fact of his material existence. Therefore we must conform to all the laws of our physical being, in order that through our life on this earth we may develop that higher Life which belongs to the other part of our being, our spiritual heritage. Through the use we make of our health, of our tilth, of our pastures, of material facts of all kinds, will develop our moral and spiritual nature.


11:62
[ Original ]
قَالُوا يَا صَالِحُ قَدْ كُنْتَ فِينَا مَرْجُوًّا قَبْلَ هَٰذَا ۖ أَتَنْهَانَا أَنْ نَعْبُدَ مَا يَعْبُدُ آبَاؤُنَا وَإِنَّنَا لَفِي شَكٍّ مِمَّا تَدْعُونَا إِلَيْهِ مُرِيبٍ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
They said: "O Salih! thou hast been of us! a centre of our hopes hitherto! dost thou (now) forbid us the worship of what our fathers worshipped? But we are really in suspicious (disquieting) doubt as to that to which thou invitest us."
[ Saheeh International ]
They said, "O Salih, you were among us a man of promise before this. Do you forbid us to worship what our fathers worshipped? And indeed we are, about that to which you invite us, in disquieting doubt."
Tafseer Commentary

1558 Salih's life with his people had been so righteous (like that of al Amin in later times) that he might have been chosen leader or king if he had only conformed to their superstitions and supported their sins. But he was born for a higher mission- that of a preacher of truth and righteousness and an ardent opponent of selfish privilege and a champion of the rights of humanity on Allah's free earth by the symbol of the she-camel: see n. 1044 to 7:73.


11:63
[ Original ]
قَالَ يَا قَوْمِ أَرَأَيْتُمْ إِنْ كُنْتُ عَلَىٰ بَيِّنَةٍ مِنْ رَبِّي وَآتَانِي مِنْهُ رَحْمَةً فَمَنْ يَنْصُرُنِي مِنَ اللَّهِ إِنْ عَصَيْتُهُ ۖ فَمَا تَزِيدُونَنِي غَيْرَ تَخْسِيرٍ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
He said: "O my people! do ye see? if I have a Clear (Sign) from my Lord and He hath sent Mercy unto me from Himself,- who then can help me against Allah if I were to disobey Him? What then would ye add to my (portion) but perdition?
[ Saheeh International ]
He said, "O my people, have you considered: if I should be upon clear evidence from my Lord and He has given me mercy from Himself, who would protect me from Allah if I disobeyed Him? So you would not increase me except in loss.
Tafseer Commentary

1559 "Allah has been good to me and bestowed on me His light and the inestimable privilege of carrying His mission to you. Don't you see that if I fail to carry out His mission, I shall have to answer before Him? Who can help me in that case? The only thing which you can add to my misfortunes would be total perdition in the spiritual world." Cf. 11:28 .


11:64
[ Original ]
وَيَا قَوْمِ هَٰذِهِ نَاقَةُ اللَّهِ لَكُمْ آيَةً فَذَرُوهَا تَأْكُلْ فِي أَرْضِ اللَّهِ وَلَا تَمَسُّوهَا بِسُوءٍ فَيَأْخُذَكُمْ عَذَابٌ قَرِيبٌ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
"And O my people! This she-camel of Allah is a symbol to you: leave her to feed on Allah's (free) earth, and inflict no harm on her, or a swift penalty will seize you!"
[ Saheeh International ]
And O my people, this is the she-camel of Allah - [she is] to you a sign. So let her feed upon Allah 's earth and do not touch her with harm, or you will be taken by an impending punishment."
Tafseer Commentary

1560 Salih does not merely take up a negative attitude, he puts forward the shecamel as a Symbol: see n. 1044 to 8:73. "Give up your selfish monopoly. Make Allah's gifts on this free earth available to all. Give the poor their rights, including grazing rights on common lands. Show your penitence and your new attitude by leaving this she-camel to graze freely. She is a Symbol, and therefore sacred to you." But their only reply was to defy the appeal and hamstring the camel. And so they went the way of all sinners-to total perdition.


11:65
[ Original ]
فَعَقَرُوهَا فَقَالَ تَمَتَّعُوا فِي دَارِكُمْ ثَلَاثَةَ أَيَّامٍ ۖ ذَٰلِكَ وَعْدٌ غَيْرُ مَكْذُوبٍ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
But they did ham-string her. So he said: "Enjoy yourselves in your homes for three days: (Then will be your ruin): (Behold) there a promise not to be belied!"
[ Saheeh International ]
But they hamstrung her, so he said, "Enjoy yourselves in your homes for three days. That is a promise not to be denied."
Tafseer Commentary

1561 Just three days' time for further thought and repentance! But they paid no heed. A terrible earthquake came by night, preceded by a mighty rumbling blast (probably volcanic), such as is well-known in earthquake-prone areas. It came by night and buried them in their own fortress homes, which they thought such places of security! The morning found them lying on their faces hidden from the light How the mighty were brought low!.


11:66
[ Original ]
فَلَمَّا جَاءَ أَمْرُنَا نَجَّيْنَا صَالِحًا وَالَّذِينَ آمَنُوا مَعَهُ بِرَحْمَةٍ مِنَّا وَمِنْ خِزْيِ يَوْمِئِذٍ ۗ إِنَّ رَبَّكَ هُوَ الْقَوِيُّ الْعَزِيزُ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
When Our Decree issued, We saved Salih and those who believed with him, by (special) Grace from Ourselves - and from the Ignominy of that day. For thy Lord - He is the Strong One, and able to enforce His Will.
[ Saheeh International ]
So when Our command came, We saved Salih and those who believed with him, by mercy from Us, and [saved them] from the disgrace of that day. Indeed, it is your Lord who is the Powerful, the Exalted in Might.
Tafseer Commentary

1562 Cf. 11:58 above and n. 1554. For 'Aziz, see n. 2818 to 21:40 .


11:67
[ Original ]
وَأَخَذَ الَّذِينَ ظَلَمُوا الصَّيْحَةُ فَأَصْبَحُوا فِي دِيَارِهِمْ جَاثِمِينَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
The (mighty) Blast overtook the wrong-doers, and they lay prostrate in their homes before the morning,-
[ Saheeh International ]
And the shriek seized those who had wronged, and they became within their homes [corpses] fallen prone
Tafseer Commentary

1563 Cf. 7:78 and n. 1047-also n. 1561 above.


11:68
[ Original ]
كَأَنْ لَمْ يَغْنَوْا فِيهَا ۗ أَلَا إِنَّ ثَمُودَ كَفَرُوا رَبَّهُمْ ۗ أَلَا بُعْدًا لِثَمُودَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
As if they had never dwelt and flourished there. Ah! Behold! for the Thamud rejected their Lord and Cherisher! Ah! Behold! removed (from sight) were the Thamud!
[ Saheeh International ]
As if they had never prospered therein. Unquestionably, Thamud denied their Lord; then, away with Thamud.
Tafseer Commentary

1564 Cf. 11:60 above, and 11:94-95.


11:69
[ Original ]
وَلَقَدْ جَاءَتْ رُسُلُنَا إِبْرَاهِيمَ بِالْبُشْرَىٰ قَالُوا سَلَامًا ۖ قَالَ سَلَامٌ ۖ فَمَا لَبِثَ أَنْ جَاءَ بِعِجْلٍ حَنِيذٍ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
There came Our messengers to Abraham with glad tidings. They said, "Peace!" He answered, "Peace!" and hastened to entertain them with a roasted calf.
[ Saheeh International ]
And certainly did Our messengers come to Abraham with good tidings; they said, "Peace." He said, "Peace," and did not delay in bringing [them] a roasted calf.
Tafseer Commentary

1565 According to the sequence of Surah 7, the next reference should be to the story of Lut, and that story commences at 11:77 below, but it is introduced by a brief reference to an episode in the life of his uncle Abraham, from whose seed sprang the peoples to whom Moses, Jesus, and Muhammad al Mustafa were sent with the major Revelations. Abraham had by this time passed through the fire of persecutions in the Mesopotamian valleys; he had left behind him the ancestral idolatry of Ur of the Chaldees; he had been tried and he had triumphed over the persecution of Nimrud; he had now taken up his residence in Canaan, from which his nephew Lot (Lut) was called to preach to the wicked Cities of the Plain east of the Dead Sea which is itself called Bahr Lut Thus prepared and sanctified, he was now ready to receive the Message that he was chosen to be the progenitor of a great line of Prophets, and the Message is now referred to, (see also 29:31-35). Can we localise Nimrud ? If local tradition in place-names can be relied upon, this king must have ruled over the tract which includes the modern Nimrud , on the Tigris, about twenty miles south of Mosul . This is the site of Assyrian ruins of great interest, but the rise of Assyria as an Empire was of course much later than the time of Abraham. The Assyrian city was called Kalakh (or Calah ), and archaeological excavations carried out there have yielded valuable results, which are however irrelevant for our Commentary.


11:70
[ Original ]
فَلَمَّا رَأَىٰ أَيْدِيَهُمْ لَا تَصِلُ إِلَيْهِ نَكِرَهُمْ وَأَوْجَسَ مِنْهُمْ خِيفَةً ۚ قَالُوا لَا تَخَفْ إِنَّا أُرْسِلْنَا إِلَىٰ قَوْمِ لُوطٍ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
But when he saw their hands went not towards the (meal), he felt some mistrust of them, and conceived a fear of them.(1565-A) They said: "Fear not: We have been sent against the people of Lut."
[ Saheeh International ]
But when he saw their hands not reaching for it, he distrusted them and felt from them apprehension. They said, "Fear not. We have been sent to the people of Lot."
Tafseer Commentary

1565-A Abraham received the strangers with a salutation of Peace, and immediately placed before them a sumptuous meal of roasted calf. The strangers were embarrassed. They were angels and did not eat. If hospitality is refused, it means that those who refuse it meditate no good to the would-be host. Abraham therefore had a feeling of mistrust and fear in his mind, which the strangers at once set at rest by saying that their mission was in the first place to help Lut as a warner to the Cities of the Plain. But in the second place they had good news for Abraham: he was to be the father of great peoples! (Cf. 51:24-28). (R).

1566 The people of Lut means the people to whom Lut was sent on his mission of warning, the people of the wicked Cities of the Plain, Sodom and Gomorrah .


11:71
[ Original ]
وَامْرَأَتُهُ قَائِمَةٌ فَضَحِكَتْ فَبَشَّرْنَاهَا بِإِسْحَاقَ وَمِنْ وَرَاءِ إِسْحَاقَ يَعْقُوبَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
And his wife was standing (there), and she laughed: But we gave her glad tidings of Isaac, and after him, of Jacob.
[ Saheeh International ]
And his Wife was standing, and she smiled. Then We gave her good tidings of Isaac and after Isaac, Jacob.
Tafseer Commentary

1567 The narrative is very concise, and most of the details are taken for granted. We may suppose that the angels gave the news first to Abraham, who was already, according to Gen. 21:5, a hundred years of age, and his wife Sarah was not far short of ninety (Gen. 17:7). She was probably screened. She could hardly believe the news. In her scepticism (some say in her joy) she laughed. But the news was formally communicated to her that she was to be the mother of Isaac, and through Isaac, the grandmother of Jacob. Jacob was to be a fruitful tree, with his twelve sons. But, hitherto, Abraham had had no son by her, and Sarah was past the age of childbearing. "How could it be?" she thought. (R).


11:72
[ Original ]
قَالَتْ يَا وَيْلَتَىٰ أَأَلِدُ وَأَنَا عَجُوزٌ وَهَٰذَا بَعْلِي شَيْخًا ۖ إِنَّ هَٰذَا لَشَيْءٌ عَجِيبٌ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
She said: "Alas for me! shall I bear a child, seeing I am an old woman, and my husband here is an old man? That would indeed be a wonderful thing!"
[ Saheeh International ]
She said, "Woe to me! Shall I give birth while I am an old woman and this, my husband, is an old man? Indeed, this is an amazing thing!"
Tafseer Commentary

1568 This is as much a sigh of past regrets as of future wistfulness!


11:73
[ Original ]
قَالُوا أَتَعْجَبِينَ مِنْ أَمْرِ اللَّهِ ۖ رَحْمَتُ اللَّهِ وَبَرَكَاتُهُ عَلَيْكُمْ أَهْلَ الْبَيْتِ ۚ إِنَّهُ حَمِيدٌ مَجِيدٌ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
They said: "Dost thou wonder at Allah's decree? The grace of Allah and His blessings on you, o ye people of the house! for He is indeed worthy of all praise, full of all glory!"
[ Saheeh International ]
They said, "Are you amazed at the decree of Allah? May the mercy of Allah and His blessings be upon you, people of the house. Indeed, He is Praiseworthy and Honorable."
Tafseer Commentary

1569 Ahl al bayt = people of the house, a polite form of addressing the wife and members of the family. Blessings are invoked on the whole family.

1570 This little episode of Abraham's life comes on fitly as one of the illustrations of Allah's wonderful providence in His dealings with man. Abraham had had a tussle with his father on behalf of Truth and Unity (6:74); he had travelled to far countries, and was now ready to receive his great mission as the fountainhead of prophets in his old age. Humanly speaking it seemed impossible that he should have a son at his age, and yet it came to pass and became a cornerstone of sacred history.


11:74
[ Original ]
فَلَمَّا ذَهَبَ عَنْ إِبْرَاهِيمَ الرَّوْعُ وَجَاءَتْهُ الْبُشْرَىٰ يُجَادِلُنَا فِي قَوْمِ لُوطٍ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
When fear had passed from (the mind of) Abraham and the glad tidings had reached him, he began to plead with us for Lut's people.
[ Saheeh International ]
And when the fright had left Abraham and the good tidings had reached him, he began to argue with Us concerning the people of Lot.
Tafseer Commentary

1571 Glad-tidings: not only that he was to have a son, but that he was to be a fountainhead of prophets. So he now begins to plead at once for the sinful people to whom Lut was sent as a warner.


11:75
[ Original ]
إِنَّ إِبْرَاهِيمَ لَحَلِيمٌ أَوَّاهٌ مُنِيبٌ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
For Abraham was, without doubt, forbearing (of faults), compassionate, and given to look to Allah.
[ Saheeh International ]
Indeed, Abraham was forbearing, grieving and [frequently] returning [to Allah].
Tafseer Commentary

1572 Like al Mustafa, Abraham had three qualities in a pre-eminent degree, which are here mentioned: (1) he was long-suffering with other people's faults; (2) his sympathies and compassion were very wide; and (3) for every difficulty or trouble he turned to Allah and sought Him in prayer.


11:76
[ Original ]
يَا إِبْرَاهِيمُ أَعْرِضْ عَنْ هَٰذَا ۖ إِنَّهُ قَدْ جَاءَ أَمْرُ رَبِّكَ ۖ وَإِنَّهُمْ آتِيهِمْ عَذَابٌ غَيْرُ مَرْدُودٍ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
O Abraham! Seek not this. The decree of thy Lord hath gone forth: for them there cometh a penalty that cannot be turned back!
[ Saheeh International ]
[The angels said], "O Abraham, give up this [plea]. Indeed, the command of your Lord has come, and indeed, there will reach them a punishment that cannot be repelled."
Tafseer Commentary

1573 This is a sort of prophetic apostrophe. 'All your care and sympathy are useless, O Abraham! All your warning, O Lut, will be unheeded! Alas! they are so deep in sin that nothing will reclaim them!' This is illustrated in verse 79 below. And now we proceed to Lut and how he was dealt with by the wicked.


11:77
[ Original ]
وَلَمَّا جَاءَتْ رُسُلُنَا لُوطًا سِيءَ بِهِمْ وَضَاقَ بِهِمْ ذَرْعًا وَقَالَ هَٰذَا يَوْمٌ عَصِيبٌ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
When Our messengers came to Lut, he was grieved on their account and felt himself powerless (to protect) them. He said: "This is a distressful day."
[ Saheeh International ]
And when Our messengers, [the angels], came to Lot, he was anguished for them and felt for them great discomfort and said, "This is a trying day."
Tafseer Commentary

1574 The story of Lot, as referred to in 7:80-84, laid emphasis on the rejection of Lot 's mission by men who practised unnatural abominations. See n. 1049 to 7:80. Here the emphasis is laid on Allah's dealings with men-in mercy for true spiritual service and in righteous wrath and punishment for those who defy the laws of nature established by Him; also, on men's dealings with each other and the contrast between the righteous and the wicked who respect no laws human or divine,


11:78
[ Original ]
وَجَاءَهُ قَوْمُهُ يُهْرَعُونَ إِلَيْهِ وَمِنْ قَبْلُ كَانُوا يَعْمَلُونَ السَّيِّئَاتِ ۚ قَالَ يَا قَوْمِ هَٰؤُلَاءِ بَنَاتِي هُنَّ أَطْهَرُ لَكُمْ ۖ فَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ وَلَا تُخْزُونِ فِي ضَيْفِي ۖ أَلَيْسَ مِنْكُمْ رَجُلٌ رَشِيدٌ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
And his people came rushing towards him, and they had been long in the habit of practising abominations. He said: "O my people! Here are my daughters: they are purer for you (if ye marry)! Now fear Allah, and cover me not with shame about my guests! Is there not among you a single right-minded man?"
[ Saheeh International ]
And his people came hastening to him, and before [this] they had been doing evil deeds. He said, "O my people, these are my daughters; they are purer for you. So fear Allah and do not disgrace me concerning my guests. Is there not among you a man of reason?"
Tafseer Commentary

1575 The Biblical narrative suggests that the daughters were married and their husbands were close by (Gen. 19:14) and that these same daughters afterwards committed incest with their father and had children by him (Gen. 19:31). The Holy Qur'an nowhere suggests such abominations. Some Commentators suggest that "my daughters" in the mouth of a venerable man like Lut, the father of his people, may mean any young girls of those Towns. "My son" (waladi ) is still a common mode of address in Arabic-speaking countries when an elderly man addresses a young man.


11:79
[ Original ]
قَالُوا لَقَدْ عَلِمْتَ مَا لَنَا فِي بَنَاتِكَ مِنْ حَقٍّ وَإِنَّكَ لَتَعْلَمُ مَا نُرِيدُ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
They said: "Well dost thou know we have no need of thy daughters: indeed thou knowest quite well what we want!"
[ Saheeh International ]
They said, "You have already known that we have not concerning your daughters any claim, and indeed, you know what we want."

11:80
[ Original ]
قَالَ لَوْ أَنَّ لِي بِكُمْ قُوَّةً أَوْ آوِي إِلَىٰ رُكْنٍ شَدِيدٍ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
He said: "Would that I had power to suppress you or that I could betake myself to some powerful support."
[ Saheeh International ]
He said, "If only I had against you some power or could take refuge in a strong support."
Tafseer Commentary

1576 Lut seemed helpless in the situation in which he found himself-alone against a rabble of people inflamed with evil passions. He wished he had had the strength to suppress them himself or had had some powerful support to lean on! But the powerful support was there, though he had not realised it till then. It was the support of Allah. His guests were not ordinary men, but Angels who had come to test the people before they inflicted the punishment. They now declared themselves, and gave him directions to get away before the morning, when the punishment would descend on the doomed Cities of the Plain.


11:81
[ Original ]
قَالُوا يَا لُوطُ إِنَّا رُسُلُ رَبِّكَ لَنْ يَصِلُوا إِلَيْكَ ۖ فَأَسْرِ بِأَهْلِكَ بِقِطْعٍ مِنَ اللَّيْلِ وَلَا يَلْتَفِتْ مِنْكُمْ أَحَدٌ إِلَّا امْرَأَتَكَ ۖ إِنَّهُ مُصِيبُهَا مَا أَصَابَهُمْ ۚ إِنَّ مَوْعِدَهُمُ الصُّبْحُ ۚ أَلَيْسَ الصُّبْحُ بِقَرِيبٍ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
(The Messengers) said: "O Lut! We are Messengers from thy Lord! By no means shall they reach thee! now travel with thy family while yet a part of the night remains, and let not any of you look back: but thy wife (will remain behind): To her will happen what happens to the people. Morning is their time appointed: Is not the morning nigh?"
[ Saheeh International ]
The angels said, "O Lot, indeed we are messengers of your Lord; [therefore], they will never reach you. So set out with your family during a portion of the night and let not any among you look back - except your wife; indeed, she will be struck by that which strikes them. Indeed, their appointment is [for] the morning. Is not the morning near?"
Tafseer Commentary

1577 Even in Lot 's household was one who detracted from the harmony of the family. She was disobedient to her husband, and he was here obeying Allah's Command. She looked back and shared the fate of the wicked inhabitants of the Cities of the Plain: see also 66:10. The Biblical narrative suggests that she was turned in to a pillar of salt (Gen. 19:26).


11:82
[ Original ]
فَلَمَّا جَاءَ أَمْرُنَا جَعَلْنَا عَالِيَهَا سَافِلَهَا وَأَمْطَرْنَا عَلَيْهَا حِجَارَةً مِنْ سِجِّيلٍ مَنْضُودٍ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
When Our Decree issued, We turned (the cities) upside down, and rained down on them brimstones hard as baked clay, spread, layer on layer,-
[ Saheeh International ]
So when Our command came, We made the highest part [of the city] its lowest and rained upon them stones of layered hard clay, [which were]
Tafseer Commentary

1578 Cf. 7:84 and n. 1052, and 51:33-34.

1579 Sijjil, a Persian word Arabicised, from Sang-o-gil, or Sang-i-gil, stone and clay, or hard as baked clay, according to the Qamus. Sodom and Gomorrah were in a tract of hard, caky, sulphurous soil, to which this description well applies. Cf. 51:33, where the words are "stones of clay" (hijarah min tin) in connection with the same incident. On the other hand, in 105:4, the word Sijjil is used for pellets of hard-baked clay in connection with Abraha and the Companions of the Elephant.


11:83
[ Original ]
مُسَوَّمَةً عِنْدَ رَبِّكَ ۖ وَمَا هِيَ مِنَ الظَّالِمِينَ بِبَعِيدٍ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
Marked as from thy Lord: Nor are they ever far from those who do wrong!
[ Saheeh International ]
Marked from your Lord. And Allah 's punishment is not from the wrongdoers [very] far.
Tafseer Commentary

1580 If we take the words literally, they would mean that the showers of brimstones were marked with the destiny of the wicked as decreed by Allah. But would it not be better to take them figuratively, to mean that the shower of brimstones was especially appointed in Allah's Decree or Plan to mark the punishment for the crimes of Sodom and Gomorrah ?

1581 They: Arabic, h iya: some Commentators take the pronoun to refer to the wicked cities so destroyed: the meaning then would be: those wicked cities were not so different from other cities that do wrong, for they would all suffer similar punishment! Perhaps it would be better to refer "they" to the stones of punishment by a metonymy for "punishment": 'punishment would not be far from any people that did wrong.'


11:84
[ Original ]
وَإِلَىٰ مَدْيَنَ أَخَاهُمْ شُعَيْبًا ۚ قَالَ يَا قَوْمِ اعْبُدُوا اللَّهَ مَا لَكُمْ مِنْ إِلَٰهٍ غَيْرُهُ ۖ وَلَا تَنْقُصُوا الْمِكْيَالَ وَالْمِيزَانَ ۚ إِنِّي أَرَاكُمْ بِخَيْرٍ وَإِنِّي أَخَافُ عَلَيْكُمْ عَذَابَ يَوْمٍ مُحِيطٍ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
To the Madyan People (We sent) Shu'aib, one of their own brethren: he said: "O my people! worship Allah. Ye have no other god but Him. And give not short measure or weight: I see you in prosperity, but I fear for you the penalty of a day that will compass (you) all round.
[ Saheeh International ]
And to Madyan [We sent] their brother Shu'ayb. He said, "O my people, worship Allah; you have no deity other than Him. And do not decrease from the measure and the scale. Indeed, I see you in prosperity, but indeed, I fear for you the punishment of an all-encompassing Day.
Tafseer Commentary

1582 Cf. 7:85-93. The location of Madyan is explained in n. 1053 to 7:85 and the chronological place of Shu'ayb in n. 1064 to 7:93. The point of the reference here is different from that in S. 7. Here the emphasis is on Allah's dealings with men and men's crooked and obstinate ways: there the emphasis was rather on their treatment of their Prophet, thus throwing light on some of the sins of the Makkans in later times.

1583 The Midianites were a commercial people, and their besetting sin was commercial selfishness and fraudulent dealings in weights and measures. Their Prophet tells them that that is the surest way to cut short their "prosperity", both in the material and the spiritual sense. When the Day of Judgement comes, it will search out their dealings through and through: "it will compass them all round," and they will not be able to escape them, however much they may conceal their frauds in this world.


11:85
[ Original ]
وَيَا قَوْمِ أَوْفُوا الْمِكْيَالَ وَالْمِيزَانَ بِالْقِسْطِ ۖ وَلَا تَبْخَسُوا النَّاسَ أَشْيَاءَهُمْ وَلَا تَعْثَوْا فِي الْأَرْضِ مُفْسِدِينَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
"And O my people! give just measure and weight, nor withhold from the people the things that are their due: commit not evil in the land with intent to do mischief.
[ Saheeh International ]
And O my people, give full measure and weight in justice and do not deprive the people of their due and do not commit abuse on the earth, spreading corruption.
Tafseer Commentary

1584 Both Plato and Aristotle define justice as the virtue which gives everyone his due. From this point of view Justice becomes the master virtue, and includes most other virtues. It was the lack of this that ruined the Midianites. Their selfishness was "intent on mischief," i.e., spoiling other people's business by not giving them their just dues.


11:86
[ Original ]
بَقِيَّتُ اللَّهِ خَيْرٌ لَكُمْ إِنْ كُنْتُمْ مُؤْمِنِينَ ۚ وَمَا أَنَا عَلَيْكُمْ بِحَفِيظٍ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
"That which is left you by Allah is best for you, if ye (but) believed! but I am not set over you to keep watch!"
[ Saheeh International ]
What remains [lawful] from Allah is best for you, if you would be believers. But I am not a guardian over you."
Tafseer Commentary

1585 Allah's Law does not require that a man should deprive himself of the things that are necessary for his own well-being and development. If he follows Allah's Law, what is left him after he renders to others their just dues will be not only enough, but will be the best possible provision for his own physical and spiritual growth. Even the kindness and consideration which Allah's Law inculcates are in the best interests of the man's own soul. But of course the kindness and consideration must be spontaneous. It must flow from the man's own will, and cannot be forced on him by the Teachers who come from Allah to show him the way.


11:87
[ Original ]
قَالُوا يَا شُعَيْبُ أَصَلَاتُكَ تَأْمُرُكَ أَنْ نَتْرُكَ مَا يَعْبُدُ آبَاؤُنَا أَوْ أَنْ نَفْعَلَ فِي أَمْوَالِنَا مَا نَشَاءُ ۖ إِنَّكَ لَأَنْتَ الْحَلِيمُ الرَّشِيدُ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
They said: "O Shu'aib! Does thy (religion of) prayer command thee that we leave off the worship which our fathers practised, or that we leave off doing what we like with our property? truly, thou art the one that forbeareth with faults and is rightminded!"
[ Saheeh International ]
They said, "O Shu'ayb, does your prayer command you that we should leave what our fathers worship or not do with our wealth what we please? Indeed, you are the forbearing, the discerning!"
Tafseer Commentary

1586 It is the say of selfish and material minded people (1) to scoff at spiritual things like prayer and worship and (2) to hug their own property rights as if there were not other rights even greater than those of property!

1587 They grow sarcastic against Shu'ayb. In effect they say: "You are a fine man! You teach us that we must be kind and forbearing with other people's faults, and now get at what you call our sins! You think you are the only right-minded man!"


11:88
[ Original ]
قَالَ يَا قَوْمِ أَرَأَيْتُمْ إِنْ كُنْتُ عَلَىٰ بَيِّنَةٍ مِنْ رَبِّي وَرَزَقَنِي مِنْهُ رِزْقًا حَسَنًا ۚ وَمَا أُرِيدُ أَنْ أُخَالِفَكُمْ إِلَىٰ مَا أَنْهَاكُمْ عَنْهُ ۚ إِنْ أُرِيدُ إِلَّا الْإِصْلَاحَ مَا اسْتَطَعْتُ ۚ وَمَا تَوْفِيقِي إِلَّا بِاللَّهِ ۚ عَلَيْهِ تَوَكَّلْتُ وَإِلَيْهِ أُنِيبُ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
He said: "O my people! see ye whether I have a Clear (Sign) from my Lord, and He hath given me sustenance (pure and) good as from Himself? I wish not, in opposition to you, to do that which I forbid you to do. I only desire (your) betterment to the best of my power; and my success (in my task) can only come from Allah. In Him I trust, and unto Him I look.
[ Saheeh International ]
He said, "O my people, have you considered: if I am upon clear evidence from my Lord and He has provided me with a good provision from Him...? And I do not intend to differ from you in that which I have forbidden you; I only intend reform as much as I am able. And my success is not but through Allah. Upon him I have relied, and to Him I return.
Tafseer Commentary

1588 Shu'ayb's answer is gentle and persuasive. First, he would ask them not to fly into a passion but satisfy themselves that he had a mission from Allah, and was working in the discharge of his mission: he was not merely finding fault with them. Secondly, though he was a poor man, he asked them to note that he was happy and comfortable: Allah had given him good sustenance t material and spiritual, as from Himself, though he did not resort to the sort of tricks which they considered necessary for their prosperity. Thirdly, if he forbade them anything he wished to apply the same standards to himself. Fourthly, all the advice which he is giving them is for their own good, which he desires to advance to the utmost of his powers. Fifthly, he is humble for himself; he would not set himself up to be their teacher or guide, or expect to be obeyed; the success of any of his efforts on their behalf must come from Allah's grace; will they not therefore turn to Allah, so mat Allah's grace can heal them?


11:89
[ Original ]
وَيَا قَوْمِ لَا يَجْرِمَنَّكُمْ شِقَاقِي أَنْ يُصِيبَكُمْ مِثْلُ مَا أَصَابَ قَوْمَ نُوحٍ أَوْ قَوْمَ هُودٍ أَوْ قَوْمَ صَالِحٍ ۚ وَمَا قَوْمُ لُوطٍ مِنْكُمْ بِبَعِيدٍ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
"And O my people! let not my dissent (from you) cause you to sin, lest ye suffer a fate similar to that of the people of Noah or of Hud or of Salih, nor are the people of Lut far off from you!
[ Saheeh International ]
And O my people, let not [your] dissension from me cause you to be struck by that similar to what struck the people of Noah or the people of Hud or the people of Salih. And the people of Lot are not from you far away.
Tafseer Commentary

1589 Finally, Shu'ayb appeals to them as man to man. "Because I differ from you, do not think I do not love you or feel for you. Let it not drive you into obstinacy and sin. I see things that you do not. My vision takes in the fate of previous generations who sinned, and perished on account of their sins. Turn therefore to Allah in repentance."

1590 The generation of Lut was not far off from the generation of Shu'ayb chronologically, if Shu'ayb was only in the fourth generation from Abraham (see n. 1064 to 7:93). Nor was its habitat geographically far from that of Shu'ayb, as the Midianites wandered about from the Sinai Peninsula to the Jordan valley (see n. 1053 to 7:85).


11:90
[ Original ]
وَاسْتَغْفِرُوا رَبَّكُمْ ثُمَّ تُوبُوا إِلَيْهِ ۚ إِنَّ رَبِّي رَحِيمٌ وَدُودٌ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
"But ask forgiveness of your Lord, and turn unto Him (in repentance): For my Lord is indeed full of mercy and loving-kindness."
[ Saheeh International ]
And ask forgiveness of your Lord and then repent to Him. Indeed, my Lord is Merciful and Affectionate."

11:91
[ Original ]
قَالُوا يَا شُعَيْبُ مَا نَفْقَهُ كَثِيرًا مِمَّا تَقُولُ وَإِنَّا لَنَرَاكَ فِينَا ضَعِيفًا ۖ وَلَوْلَا رَهْطُكَ لَرَجَمْنَاكَ ۖ وَمَا أَنْتَ عَلَيْنَا بِعَزِيزٍ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
They said: "O Shu'aib! much of what thou sayest we do not understand! In fact among us we see that thou hast no strength! Were it not for thy family, we should certainly have stoned thee! for thou hast among us no great position!"
[ Saheeh International ]
They said, "O Shu'ayb, we do not understand much of what you say, and indeed, we consider you among us as weak. And if not for your family, we would have stoned you [to death]; and you are not to us one respected."
Tafseer Commentary

1591 Spiritual things are easy to understand if we bring the right mind in them. But those who are contemptuous of them deliberately shut their eyes to Allah's Signs, and then pretend in their superior arrogance that they are 'quite beyond them'!

1592 What they do understand is brute strength. They practically say: "Don't you see that we have all the power and influence, and you, Shu'ayb, are only a poor Teacher? We could stone you or imprison you or do what we like with you! Thank us for our kindness that we spare you-for the sake of your family. It is more than you yourself deserve!"


11:92
[ Original ]
قَالَ يَا قَوْمِ أَرَهْطِي أَعَزُّ عَلَيْكُمْ مِنَ اللَّهِ وَاتَّخَذْتُمُوهُ وَرَاءَكُمْ ظِهْرِيًّا ۖ إِنَّ رَبِّي بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ مُحِيطٌ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
He said: "O my people! is then my family of more consideration with you than Allah. For ye cast Him away behind your backs (with contempt). But verily my Lord encompasseth on all sides all that ye do!
[ Saheeh International ]
He said, "O my people, is my family more respected for power by you than Allah? But you put Him behind your backs [in neglect]. Indeed, my Lord is encompassing of what you do.
Tafseer Commentary

1593 Cf. 8:47 .


11:93
[ Original ]
وَيَا قَوْمِ اعْمَلُوا عَلَىٰ مَكَانَتِكُمْ إِنِّي عَامِلٌ ۖ سَوْفَ تَعْلَمُونَ مَنْ يَأْتِيهِ عَذَابٌ يُخْزِيهِ وَمَنْ هُوَ كَاذِبٌ ۖ وَارْتَقِبُوا إِنِّي مَعَكُمْ رَقِيبٌ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
"And O my people! Do whatever ye can: I will do (my part): Soon will ye know who it is on whom descends the penalty of ignominy; and who is a liar! and watch ye! for I too am watching with you!"
[ Saheeh International ]
And O my people, work according to your position; indeed, I am working. You are going to know to whom will come a punishment that will disgrace him and who is a liar. So watch; indeed, I am with you a watcher, [awaiting the outcome]."
Tafseer Commentary

1594 Cf. 6:135 and n. 957, and 11:121.

1595 If the wicked will continue to blaspheme and mock, what can the godly say but this?-"Watch and wait! Allah's Plan works without fail! I have faith, and I too will watch with you for its fulfilment" Cf. 10:102, and n. 1484.


11:94
[ Original ]
وَلَمَّا جَاءَ أَمْرُنَا نَجَّيْنَا شُعَيْبًا وَالَّذِينَ آمَنُوا مَعَهُ بِرَحْمَةٍ مِنَّا وَأَخَذَتِ الَّذِينَ ظَلَمُوا الصَّيْحَةُ فَأَصْبَحُوا فِي دِيَارِهِمْ جَاثِمِينَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
When Our decree issued, We saved Shu'aib and those who believed with him, by (special) mercy from Ourselves: But the (mighty) blast did seize the wrong- doers, and they lay prostrate in their homes by the morning,-
[ Saheeh International ]
And when Our command came, We saved Shu'ayb and those who believed with him, by mercy from Us. And the shriek seized those who had wronged, and they became within their homes [corpses] fallen prone
Tafseer Commentary

1596 Cf. 11:66 and 11:58 . n. 1554.


11:95
[ Original ]
كَأَنْ لَمْ يَغْنَوْا فِيهَا ۗ أَلَا بُعْدًا لِمَدْيَنَ كَمَا بَعِدَتْ ثَمُودُ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
As if they had never dwelt and flourished there! Ah! Behold! How the Madyan were removed (from sight) as were removed the Thamud!
[ Saheeh International ]
As if they had never prospered therein. Then, away with Madyan as Thamud was taken away.
Tafseer Commentary

1597 Cf. 11:67-68. The blast was probably the tremendous noise which accompanies volcanic eruptions.


11:96
[ Original ]
وَلَقَدْ أَرْسَلْنَا مُوسَىٰ بِآيَاتِنَا وَسُلْطَانٍ مُبِينٍ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
And we sent Moses, with Our Clear (Signs) and an authority manifest,
[ Saheeh International ]
And We did certainly send Moses with Our signs and a clear authority
Tafseer Commentary

1598 The story of Moses and Pharaoh is referred to in many places in the Qur'an, each in connection with some special point to be illustrated. Here the point is that Allah's dealings with man are in all things and at all times just. But man falls under false leadership by deliberate choice and perishes along with his false leaders accordingly. In exercise of the intelligence and choice given him, man should be particularly careful to understand his own responsibilities and to profit from Allah's Signs, so as to attain to Allah's Mercy and blessings.


11:97
[ Original ]
إِلَىٰ فِرْعَوْنَ وَمَلَئِهِ فَاتَّبَعُوا أَمْرَ فِرْعَوْنَ ۖ وَمَا أَمْرُ فِرْعَوْنَ بِرَشِيدٍ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
Unto Pharaoh and his chiefs: but they followed the Command of Pharaoh and the command of Pharaoh was no right (guide).
[ Saheeh International ]
To Pharaoh and his establishment, but they followed the command of Pharaoh, and the command of Pharaoh was not [at all] discerning.
Tafseer Commentary

1599 Pharaoh is the type of the arrogant, selfish, and false leader, who poses as a power in rivalry with that of Allah. Such an attitude seems to attract unregenerate humanity, which falls a willing victim, in spite of the teaching and warning given by the Prophets of Allah and the many moral and spiritual forces that beckon man towards Allah's Grace.


11:98
[ Original ]
يَقْدُمُ قَوْمَهُ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ فَأَوْرَدَهُمُ النَّارَ ۖ وَبِئْسَ الْوِرْدُ الْمَوْرُودُ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
He will go before his people on the Day of Judgment, and lead them into the Fire (as cattle are led to water): But woeful indeed will be the place to which they are led!
[ Saheeh International ]
He will precede his people on the Day of Resurrection and lead them into the Fire; and wretched is the place to which they are led.
Tafseer Commentary

1600 Awrada = to lead, as cattle, down to their watering place. The metaphor is apt. The true herdsman is trusted by his normal flock, and he leads them in the heat of the day down to pleasant and cool watering places in order that they may slake their thirst and be happy. The false leader does the opposite: he takes them down to the fire of eternal misery! And yet men sin against their own intelligence, and follow the false leader like cattle without intelligence!


11:99
[ Original ]
وَأُتْبِعُوا فِي هَٰذِهِ لَعْنَةً وَيَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ ۚ بِئْسَ الرِّفْدُ الْمَرْفُودُ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
And they are followed by a curse in this (life) and on the Day of Judgment: and woeful is the gift which shall be given (unto them)!
[ Saheeh International ]
And they were followed in this [world] with a curse and on the Day of Resurrection. And wretched is the gift which is given.

11:100
[ Original ]
ذَٰلِكَ مِنْ أَنْبَاءِ الْقُرَىٰ نَقُصُّهُ عَلَيْكَ ۖ مِنْهَا قَائِمٌ وَحَصِيدٌ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
These are some of the stories of communities which We relate unto thee: of them some are standing, and some have been mown down (by the sickle of time).
[ Saheeh International ]
That is from the news of the cities, which We relate to you; of them, some are [still] standing and some are [as] a harvest [mowed down].
Tafseer Commentary

1601 Some are standing, like corn, which is ready to be reaped. Among the communities which remained was, and is, Egypt , although the Pharaoh and his wicked people have been swept away. The simile of standing corn also suggests that at no time can any town or community expect permanency, except in the Law of the Lord.

1602 Nations grow and ripen and are mown down. If they disobeyed Allah, their end is evil; if they were true and godly, their harvest was good.


11:101
[ Original ]
وَمَا ظَلَمْنَاهُمْ وَلَٰكِنْ ظَلَمُوا أَنْفُسَهُمْ ۖ فَمَا أَغْنَتْ عَنْهُمْ آلِهَتُهُمُ الَّتِي يَدْعُونَ مِنْ دُونِ اللَّهِ مِنْ شَيْءٍ لَمَّا جَاءَ أَمْرُ رَبِّكَ ۖ وَمَا زَادُوهُمْ غَيْرَ تَتْبِيبٍ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
It was not We that wronged them: They wronged their own souls: the deities, other than Allah, whom they invoked, profited them no whit when there issued the decree of thy Lord: Nor did they add aught (to their lot) but perdition!
[ Saheeh International ]
And We did not wrong them, but they wronged themselves. And they were not availed at all by their gods which they invoked other than Allah when there came the command of your Lord. And they did not increase them in other than ruin.
Tafseer Commentary

1603 All false and fleeting shadows must vanish before the reality and permanence of the decree of Allah. If we worshipped the false, we earned nothing but perdition.


11:102
[ Original ]
وَكَذَٰلِكَ أَخْذُ رَبِّكَ إِذَا أَخَذَ الْقُرَىٰ وَهِيَ ظَالِمَةٌ ۚ إِنَّ أَخْذَهُ أَلِيمٌ شَدِيدٌ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
Such is the chastisement of thy Lord when He chastises communities in the midst of their wrong: grievous, indeed, and severe is His chastisement.
[ Saheeh International ]
And thus is the seizure of your Lord when He seizes the cities while they are committing wrong. Indeed, His seizure is painful and severe.

11:103
[ Original ]
إِنَّ فِي ذَٰلِكَ لَآيَةً لِمَنْ خَافَ عَذَابَ الْآخِرَةِ ۚ ذَٰلِكَ يَوْمٌ مَجْمُوعٌ لَهُ النَّاسُ وَذَٰلِكَ يَوْمٌ مَشْهُودٌ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
In that is a Sign for those who fear the penalty of the Hereafter: that is a Day for which mankind will be gathered together: that will be a Day of Testimony.
[ Saheeh International ]
Indeed in that is a sign for those who fear the punishment of the Hereafter. That is a Day for which the people will be collected, and that is a Day [which will be] witnessed.
Tafseer Commentary

1604 Yawm mashhud: To suggest the comprehensive meaning of the Arabic I have translated, "a Day of Testimony". I proceed to explain the various shades of meaning implied: (1) a Day to which all testimony points from every quarter; (2) a Day when testimony will be given before Allah's Judgement Seat, by all who are relevant witnesses, e.g., the Prophets that preached, the men or women we benefited or injured, the angels who recorded our thoughts and deeds, or our thoughts and deeds personified; (3) a Day which will be witnessed, i.e., seen by all, no matter how or where they died.


11:104
[ Original ]
وَمَا نُؤَخِّرُهُ إِلَّا لِأَجَلٍ مَعْدُودٍ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
Nor shall We delay it but for a term appointed.
[ Saheeh International ]
And We do not delay it except for a limited term.

11:105
[ Original ]
يَوْمَ يَأْتِ لَا تَكَلَّمُ نَفْسٌ إِلَّا بِإِذْنِهِ ۚ فَمِنْهُمْ شَقِيٌّ وَسَعِيدٌ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
The day it arrives, no soul shall speak except by His leave: of those (gathered) some will be wretched and some will be blessed.
[ Saheeh International ]
The Day it comes no soul will speak except by His permission. And among them will be the wretched and the prosperous.
Tafseer Commentary

1605 Speak: i.e., either in self-defence or in accusation of others or to intercede for others, or to enter into conversation or ask questions, one with another. It will be a solemn Day, before the Great Judge of all, to whom everything will be known and whose authority will be unquestioned. There will be no room for quibbling or equivocation or subterfuge of any kind, nor can anyone lay the blame on another or take the responsibility of another. Personal responsibility will be enforced strictly.

1606 Shaqi (wretched) and Sa'id (blessed) have become almost technical theological terms. They are explained in the four following verses.


11:106
[ Original ]
فَأَمَّا الَّذِينَ شَقُوا فَفِي النَّارِ لَهُمْ فِيهَا زَفِيرٌ وَشَهِيقٌ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
Those who are wretched shall be in the Fire: There will be for them therein (nothing but) the heaving of sighs and sobs:
[ Saheeh International ]
As for those who were [destined to be] wretched, they will be in the Fire. For them therein is [violent] exhaling and inhaling.
Tafseer Commentary

1607 The first word, Zafir, translated "sighs", is applied to one part in the process of the braying of an ass, when he emits a deep breath (Cf. 25:12). The second, Shahiq, translated "sobs", is the other process in the braying of an ass, when he draws in a long breath. This suggestion of an animal proverbial for his folly implies that the wicked, in spite of their arrogance and insolence in this world below, will at last realise that they have been fools after all, throwing away their own chances whenever they got diem. In 67:7 the word Shahiq is applied to the tremendous roaring intake or devouring of Hell-fire.


11:107
[ Original ]
خَالِدِينَ فِيهَا مَا دَامَتِ السَّمَاوَاتُ وَالْأَرْضُ إِلَّا مَا شَاءَ رَبُّكَ ۚ إِنَّ رَبَّكَ فَعَّالٌ لِمَا يُرِيدُ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
They will dwell therein for all the time that the heavens and the earth endure, except as thy Lord willeth: for thy Lord is the (sure) accomplisher of what He planneth.
[ Saheeh International ]
[They will be] abiding therein as long as the heavens and the earth endure, except what your Lord should will. Indeed, your Lord is an effecter of what He intends.
Tafseer Commentary

1608 Khalidin: This is the word which is usually translated "dwell forever" or "dwell for aye". Here it is definitely connected with two conditions, viz: (1) as long as the heavens and the earth endure, and (2) except as Allah wills. Some Muslim theologians deduce from this the conclusion that the penalties referred to are not eternal, because the heavens and the earth as we see them are not eternal, and the punishments for the deeds of a life that will end should not be such as will never end. The majority of Muslim theologians reject this view. They hold that the heavens and the earth here referred to are not those we see now, but others that will be eternal. They agree that Allah's Will is unlimited in scope and power, but that it has willed that the rewards and punishments of the Day of Judgement will be eternal. This is not the place to enter into this tremendous controversy.


11:108
[ Original ]
وَأَمَّا الَّذِينَ سُعِدُوا فَفِي الْجَنَّةِ خَالِدِينَ فِيهَا مَا دَامَتِ السَّمَاوَاتُ وَالْأَرْضُ إِلَّا مَا شَاءَ رَبُّكَ ۖ عَطَاءً غَيْرَ مَجْذُوذٍ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
And those who are blessed shall be in the Garden: They will dwell therein for all the time that the heavens and the earth endure, except as thy Lord willeth: a gift without break.
[ Saheeh International ]
And as for those who were [destined to be] prosperous, they will be in Paradise, abiding therein as long as the heavens and the earth endure, except what your Lord should will - a bestowal uninterrupted.
Tafseer Commentary

1609 Exactly the same arguments apply as in the last note.

1610 The felicity will be uninterrupted, unlike any joy or happiness which we can imagine in this life and which is subject to chances and changes, as our daily experience shows.


11:109
[ Original ]
فَلَا تَكُ فِي مِرْيَةٍ مِمَّا يَعْبُدُ هَٰؤُلَاءِ ۚ مَا يَعْبُدُونَ إِلَّا كَمَا يَعْبُدُ آبَاؤُهُمْ مِنْ قَبْلُ ۚ وَإِنَّا لَمُوَفُّوهُمْ نَصِيبَهُمْ غَيْرَ مَنْقُوصٍ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
Be not then in doubt as to what these men worship. They worship nothing but what their fathers worshipped before (them): but verily We shall pay them back (in full) their portion without (the least) abatement.
[ Saheeh International ]
So do not be in doubt, [O Muhammad], as to what these [polytheists] are worshipping. They worship not except as their fathers worshipped before. And indeed, We will give them their share undiminished.
Tafseer Commentary

1611 Their worship is not based on any spiritual attitude of mind. They merely follow the ways of their fathers.

1612 Allah will take fully into account all their motives in such mummery as they call worship, and they will have their full spiritual consequences in the future.


11:110
[ Original ]
وَلَقَدْ آتَيْنَا مُوسَى الْكِتَابَ فَاخْتُلِفَ فِيهِ ۚ وَلَوْلَا كَلِمَةٌ سَبَقَتْ مِنْ رَبِّكَ لَقُضِيَ بَيْنَهُمْ ۚ وَإِنَّهُمْ لَفِي شَكٍّ مِنْهُ مُرِيبٍ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
We certainly gave the Book to Moses, but differences arose therein: had it not been that a word had gone forth before from thy Lord, the matter would have been decided between them, but they are in suspicious doubt concerning it.
[ Saheeh International ]
And We had certainly given Moses the Scripture, but it came under disagreement. And if not for a word that preceded from your Lord, it would have been judged between them. And indeed they are, concerning the Qur'an, in disquieting doubt.
Tafseer Commentary

1613 Cf. 10:19 . Previous revelations are not to be denied or dishonoured because those who nominally go by them have corrupted and deprived them of spiritual value by their vain controversies and disputes. It was possible to settle such disputes under the flag, as it were, of the old Revelations, but Allah's Plan was to revive and rejuvenate His Message through Islam, amongst a newer and younger people, unhampered by the burden of age-old prejudices.

1614 Cf. 11:62. There is always in human affairs the conflict between the old and the new-the worn out system of our ancestors, and the fresh living spring of Allah's inspiration fitting in with new times and new surroundings. The advocates of the former look upon this latter not only with intellectual doubt but with moral suspicion, as did the People of the Book upon Islam, with its fresh outlook and vigorous realistic way of looking at things.


11:111
[ Original ]
وَإِنَّ كُلًّا لَمَّا لَيُوَفِّيَنَّهُمْ رَبُّكَ أَعْمَالَهُمْ ۚ إِنَّهُ بِمَا يَعْمَلُونَ خَبِيرٌ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
And, of a surety, to all will your Lord pay back (in full the recompense) of their deeds: for He knoweth well all that they do.
[ Saheeh International ]
And indeed, each [of the believers and disbelievers] - your Lord will fully compensate them for their deeds. Indeed, He is Acquainted with what they do.
Tafseer Commentary

1615 Cf. 11:109 above, with which the argument is now connected by recalling the characteristic word ("pay back") and leading to the exhortation (in the verses following) to stand firm in the right path freshly revealed.


11:112
[ Original ]
فَاسْتَقِمْ كَمَا أُمِرْتَ وَمَنْ تَابَ مَعَكَ وَلَا تَطْغَوْا ۚ إِنَّهُ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ بَصِيرٌ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
Therefore stand firm (in the straight Path) as thou art commanded,- thou and those who with thee turn (unto Allah.; and transgress not (from the Path): for He seeth well all that ye do.
[ Saheeh International ]
So remain on a right course as you have been commanded, [you] and those who have turned back with you [to Allah], and do not transgress. Indeed, He is Seeing of what you do.

11:113
[ Original ]
وَلَا تَرْكَنُوا إِلَى الَّذِينَ ظَلَمُوا فَتَمَسَّكُمُ النَّارُ وَمَا لَكُمْ مِنْ دُونِ اللَّهِ مِنْ أَوْلِيَاءَ ثُمَّ لَا تُنْصَرُونَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
And incline not to those who do wrong, or the Fire will seize you; and ye have no protectors other than Allah, nor shall ye be helped.
[ Saheeh International ]
And do not incline toward those who do wrong, lest you be touched by the Fire, and you would not have other than Allah any protectors; then you would not be helped.

11:114
[ Original ]
وَأَقِمِ الصَّلَاةَ طَرَفَيِ النَّهَارِ وَزُلَفًا مِنَ اللَّيْلِ ۚ إِنَّ الْحَسَنَاتِ يُذْهِبْنَ السَّيِّئَاتِ ۚ ذَٰلِكَ ذِكْرَىٰ لِلذَّاكِرِينَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
And establish regular prayers at the two ends of the day and at the approaches of the night: For those things, that are good remove those that are evil: Be that the word of remembrance to those who remember (their Lord):
[ Saheeh International ]
And establish prayer at the two ends of the day and at the approach of the night. Indeed, good deeds do away with misdeeds. That is a reminder for those who remember.
Tafseer Commentary

1616 The two ends of the day: Morning and afternoon. The morning prayer is the Fajr, after the light is up but before sunrise: we thus get up early and begin the day with the remembrance of Allah and of our duty to Him. The early afternoon prayer, Zuhr, is immediately after noon : we are in the midst of our daily life, and again we remember Allah. (R).

1617 Approaches of the night: Zulafun, plural of Zulfatun, an approach, something near at hand. As Arabic has, like Greek, a dual number distinct from the plural, and the plural number is used here, and not the dual, it is reasonable to argue that at least three "approaches of the night" are meant. The late afternoon prayer, 'Asr, can be one of these three, and the evening prayer, Maghrib, just after sunset, can be the second. The early night prayer,' lsha' at supper time when the glow of sunset is disappearing, would be the third of the "approaches of the night", when we commit ourselves to Allah before sleep. These are the five canonical prayers of Islam, (Cf. n. 3521).

1618 Those things that are good: in this context the words refer primarily to prayers and sacred thoughts, but they include all good thoughts, good words, and good deeds. It is by them that we keep away everything that is evil, whether referring to the past, the present, or the future.


11:115
[ Original ]
وَاصْبِرْ فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ لَا يُضِيعُ أَجْرَ الْمُحْسِنِينَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
And be steadfast in patience; for verily Allah will not suffer the reward of the righteous to perish.
[ Saheeh International ]
And be patient, for indeed, Allah does not allow to be lost the reward of those who do good.

11:116
[ Original ]
فَلَوْلَا كَانَ مِنَ الْقُرُونِ مِنْ قَبْلِكُمْ أُولُو بَقِيَّةٍ يَنْهَوْنَ عَنِ الْفَسَادِ فِي الْأَرْضِ إِلَّا قَلِيلًا مِمَّنْ أَنْجَيْنَا مِنْهُمْ ۗ وَاتَّبَعَ الَّذِينَ ظَلَمُوا مَا أُتْرِفُوا فِيهِ وَكَانُوا مُجْرِمِينَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
Why were there not, among the generations before you, persons possessed of balanced good sense, prohibiting (men) from mischief in the earth - except a few among them whom We saved (from harm)? But the wrong-doers pursued the enjoyment of the good things of life which were given them, and persisted in sin.
[ Saheeh International ]
So why were there not among the generations before you those of enduring discrimination forbidding corruption on earth - except a few of those We saved from among them? But those who wronged pursued what luxury they were given therein, and they were criminals.
Tafseer Commentary

1619 Baqiyah: some virtue or faculty that stands assault and is lasting; balanced good sense that stands firm to virtue and is not dazzled by the lusts and pleasures of this world, and is not deterred by fear from boldly condemning wrong if it was fashionable or customary. It is leaders possessed of such character that can save a nation from disaster or perdition. The scarcity of such leaders-and the rejection of the few who stood out-brought ruin among the nations whose example has already been set out to us as a warning. In 11:86 the word has a more literal meaning.

1620 The exceptional men of firm virtue would have been destroyed by the wicked to whom they were an offence, had they not been saved by the Grace and Mercy of Allah. Or perhaps, but for such grace, they might themselves have succumbed to the evil around them, or been overwhelmed in the general calamity.


11:117
[ Original ]
وَمَا كَانَ رَبُّكَ لِيُهْلِكَ الْقُرَىٰ بِظُلْمٍ وَأَهْلُهَا مُصْلِحُونَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
Nor would thy Lord be the One to destroy communities for a single wrongdoing, if its members were likely to mend.
[ Saheeh International ]
And your Lord would not have destroyed the cities unjustly while their people were reformers.
Tafseer Commentary

1621 There are different shades of interpretation for this verse. I follow Baydawi in construing zulmin here as "a single wrong". He thinks that the wrong referred to is shirk, or polytheism; Allah will not destroy for mere wrong belief if the conduct is right. I am inclined to interpret it in more general terms. Allah is Long-Suffering and Oft-Forgiving: He is too Merciful to destroy for a single wrong, if there is any hope of reclaiming the wrongdoers to repentance and amendment or right life. An alternative interpretation is: "to destroy communities unjustly.". . .


11:118
[ Original ]
وَلَوْ شَاءَ رَبُّكَ لَجَعَلَ النَّاسَ أُمَّةً وَاحِدَةً ۖ وَلَا يَزَالُونَ مُخْتَلِفِينَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
If thy Lord had so willed, He could have made mankind one people: but they will not cease to dispute.
[ Saheeh International ]
And if your Lord had willed, He could have made mankind one community; but they will not cease to differ.
Tafseer Commentary

1622 Cf. 10:19 . All mankind might have been one. But in Allah's Plan man was to have a certain measure of free will, and this made differences inevitable. This would not have mattered if all had honestly sought Allah. But selfishness and moral wrong came in, and people's disputations became mixed up with hatred, jealousy, and sin, except in the case of those who accepted Allah's grace, which saved them. The object of their creation was to raise them up spiritually by Allah's grace. But if they will choose the path of evil and fall into sin, Allah's decree must be fulfilled, and His justice will take its course. In the course of that justice Hell will be filled with men and spirits, such is the number of those who go astray.


11:119
[ Original ]
إِلَّا مَنْ رَحِمَ رَبُّكَ ۚ وَلِذَٰلِكَ خَلَقَهُمْ ۗ وَتَمَّتْ كَلِمَةُ رَبِّكَ لَأَمْلَأَنَّ جَهَنَّمَ مِنَ الْجِنَّةِ وَالنَّاسِ أَجْمَعِينَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
Except those on whom thy Lord hath bestowed His Mercy: and for this did He create them: and the Word of thy Lord shall be fulfilled: "I will fill Hell with jinns and men all together."
[ Saheeh International ]
Except whom your Lord has given mercy, and for that He created them. But the word of your Lord is to be fulfilled that, "I will surely fill Hell with jinn and men all together."
Tafseer Commentary

1623 Cf. 7:18 and 7:179. If Satan and his evil spirits tempt men from the path of rectitude, the responsibility of the tempted, who choose the path of evil, is no less than that of the tempters, and they will both be involved in punishment together (see also 32:13).


11:120
[ Original ]
وَكُلًّا نَقُصُّ عَلَيْكَ مِنْ أَنْبَاءِ الرُّسُلِ مَا نُثَبِّتُ بِهِ فُؤَادَكَ ۚ وَجَاءَكَ فِي هَٰذِهِ الْحَقُّ وَمَوْعِظَةٌ وَذِكْرَىٰ لِلْمُؤْمِنِينَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
All that we relate to thee of the stories of the messengers,- with it We make firm thy heart: in them there cometh to thee the Truth, as well as an exhortation and a message of remembrance to those who believe.
[ Saheeh International ]
And each [story] We relate to you from the news of the messengers is that by which We make firm your heart. And there has come to you, in this, the truth and an instruction and a reminder for the believers.
Tafseer Commentary

1624 The stories of the Prophets in the Qur'an are not mere narratives or histories: they involve three things: (1) they teach the highest spiritual Truth; (2) they give advice, direction, and warning, as to how we should govern our lives, and (3) they awaken our conscience and recall to us the working of Allah's Law in human affairs. The story of Joseph in the next Surah is an illustration in point.


11:121
[ Original ]
وَقُلْ لِلَّذِينَ لَا يُؤْمِنُونَ اعْمَلُوا عَلَىٰ مَكَانَتِكُمْ إِنَّا عَامِلُونَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
Say to those who do not believe: "Do what ever ye can: We shall do our part;(1624-A)
[ Saheeh International ]
And say to those who do not believe, "Work according to your position; indeed, we are working.
Tafseer Commentary

1624-A Cf. 11:93 and 6:135, n. 957. The worst that you can do will not defeat Allah's plan; and as for us who believe, our obvious duty is to do our part as taught to us by Allah's revelation (see also 39:39).


11:122
[ Original ]
وَانْتَظِرُوا إِنَّا مُنْتَظِرُونَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
"And wait ye! We too shall wait."
[ Saheeh International ]
And wait, indeed, we are waiting."
Tafseer Commentary

1625 Cf. 11:93, n. 1595, and 10:102, n. 1484. If the wicked only wait, they will see how Allah's Plan unfolds itself. As for those who believe, they are glad to wait in perfect confidence, because they know that Allah is good and merciful, as well as just and true.


11:123
[ Original ]
وَلِلَّهِ غَيْبُ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضِ وَإِلَيْهِ يُرْجَعُ الْأَمْرُ كُلُّهُ فَاعْبُدْهُ وَتَوَكَّلْ عَلَيْهِ ۚ وَمَا رَبُّكَ بِغَافِلٍ عَمَّا تَعْمَلُونَ
[ Abdullah Yusuf Ali ]
To Allah do belong the unseen (secrets) of the heavens and the earth, and to Him goeth back every affair (for decision): then worship Him, and put thy trust in Him: and thy Lord is not unmindful of aught that ye do.
[ Saheeh International ]
And to Allah belong the unseen [aspects] of the heavens and the earth and to Him will be returned the matter, all of it, so worship Him and rely upon Him. And your Lord is not unaware of that which you do.
Tafseer Commentary

1626 Cf. 2:210. There is nothing, secret or open, in our world or in Creation, which does not depend ultimately on Allah's Will and Plan. Every affair goes back to Him for decision. Therefore we must worship Him and trust Him. Worship implies many things: e.g., (1) trying to understand His nature and His Will; (2) realising His goodness and glory, and His working in us; as a means to this end, (3) keeping Him in constant remembrance and celebrating His praise, to whom all praise is due; and (4) completely identifying our will with His, which means obedience to His Law, and service to Him and His creatures in all sincerity (see also n. 172).


Quran Sura/Chapters: