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Holy Quran Section > English Translation and Commentary of the Holy Quran by Maulana Muhammad Ali (Table of Contents) > Chapter 3 (Al-‘Imran - The Family of Amran) > Section 20 (Verses 190 to 200)


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Section/Ruku 20 [Verses 190 to 200]: Ultimate triumph of the faithful:
Chapter 3: (Al-‘Imran: The Family of Amran)
(Revealed at Madinah: 20 sections; 200 verses)

1. Translation:

190 In the creation of the heavens and the earth and the alternation of the night and the day, there are surely signs for men of understanding.

191 Those who remember Allah standing and sitting and (lying) on their sides, and reflect on the creation of the heavens and the earth: Our Lord, Thou hast not created this in vain! Glory be to Thee! Save us from the chastisement of the Fire.a

192 Our Lord, whomsoever Thou makest enter the Fire, him Thou indeed bringest to disgrace. And there will be no helpers for the wrongdoers.

193 Our Lord, surely we have heard a Crier calling to the faith, saying: Believe in your Lord. So we do believe. Our Lord, grant us protection from our sins and remove our evils and make us die with the righteous.

194 Our Lord, grant us what Thou hast promised us by Thy messengers and disgrace us not on the day of Resurrection. Surely Thou never failest in (Thy) promise!

195 So their Lord accepted their prayer, (saying): I will not suffer the work of any worker among you to be lost whether male or female, the one of you being from the other. So those who .ed and were driven forth from their homes and persecuted in My way and who fought and were slain, I shall truly remove their evil and make them enter Gardens wherein flow rivers — a reward from Allah. And with Allah is the best reward.a

196 Let not control in the land, of those who disbelieve, deceive thee.

197 A brief enjoyment! Then their abode is hell. And evil is the resting-place.

198 But those who keep their duty to their Lord, for them are Gardens wherein flow rivers, to abide therein; and entertainment from their Lord. And that which Allah has in store for the righteous is best.

199 And of the People of the Book there are those who believe in Allah and (in) that which has been revealed to you and (in) that which has been revealed to them, humbling themselves before Allah — they take not a small price for the messages of Allah. These it is that have their reward with their Lord. Surely Allah is Swift to take account!

200 O you who believe, be steadfast and try to excel in steadfastness and guard (the frontiers). And keep your duty to Allah that you may be successful.a

2. Commentary:

191a. This chapter, like the one before it, ends with a prayer for the victory of Faith over disbelief and a prediction for its ultimate triumph. The first two verses of the section point out two distinguishing characteristics of the faithful. It is pointed out that they are neither recluses who retire to a corner of solitude for the remembrance of Allah, nor yet do they pursue the conquest of nature without ever thinking of the Author and Lord of creation. On the one hand, they are described as remembering God in the midst of all worldly affairs and worldly pursuits, standing and sitting and lying on their sides, being thus fully conscious of the Divine presence everywhere and in all conditions; and, on the other, they set out for the conquest of nature with the full consciousness that nothing has been created in vain and that a purpose underlies the whole of creation. This is the grand object which Islam sets before its followers, to conquer self by remembrance of God and to conquer nature by pursuit of knowledge. [Back to verse 191]

195a. This is a promise which includes all those companions of the Holy Prophet who fled from their homes, and those who were persecuted, and those who fought in his company. The concluding words of the verse show that the promise to make them enter Gardens relates to this life as well, and its fulfilment was brought about in the worldly achievements of the Muslims. The reward of the Hereafter is separately spoken of in the words, with Allah is the best reward. [Back to verse 195]

200a. The last section, while predicting victory for the Muslims, requires them to be humble in the hour of triumph, as in the last chapter. The concluding verse speaks of three things as the key to success. The first is sabr, which conveys the significance of endurance and perseverance in trials and perseverance in the doing of good. The second is musabarah, which means vying in sabr or steadfastness with each other, or trying to excel the enemy in endurance. The third is rihat, which means guarding or stationing the army on the frontiers, to guard it against the enemy. All three words carry a temporal as well as a spiritual significance. What is inculcated here is, on the one hand, showing endurance in wars, excelling the enemy in endurance and to remain in readiness on the frontiers of the Muslim territory to meet the enemy, and, on the other, remaining steadfast in keeping away from evil and keeping to obedience to God, trying to excel each other in the quality of endurance and to remain on guard against the Evil one on the frontiers. What is meant by the last is explained in a Hadith of the Prophet: “What is lawful is manifest and what is unlawful is manifest and between these two are doubtful things which many people do not know. So whoever guards himself against the doubtful things, he keeps his religion and his honour unsullied, and whoever falls into doubtful things is like the herdsman who grazes his cattle on the borders of a reserve — he is likely to enter it. Know that every king has a reserve and know that the reserve of Allah in His land is what He has forbidden” (B. 2:38). The Qur’an thus, while not neglecting the temporal needs of man, aims at his spiritual perfection. [Back to verse 200]

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Chapter 2: Al-Baqarah (The Cow)

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Holy Quran Section > English Translation and Commentary of the Holy Quran by Maulana Muhammad Ali (Table of Contents) > Chapter 3 (Al-‘Imran - The Family of Amran) > Section 20 (Verses 190 to 200)


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