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Holy Quran Section > English Translation and Commentary of the Holy Quran by Maulana Muhammad Ali (Table of Contents) > Chapter 42 (Al-Shura- The Counsel) > Section 5 (Verses 44 to 53)



Section/Ruku 5 [Verses 44 to 53]: Revelation guides aright:
Chapter 42: (Al-Shura: The Counsel)
(Revealed at Makkah: 5 sections; 53 verses)

1. Translation:

44 And he whom Allah leaves in error, has no friend after Him. And thou wilt see the iniquitous, when they see the chastisement, saying: Is there any way of return?

45 And thou wilt see them brought before it, humbling themselves because of abasement, looking with a faint glance. And those who believe will say: Surely the losers are they who lose themselves and their followers on the Resurrection day. Now surely the iniquitous are in lasting chastisement.

46 And they will have no friends to help them besides Allah. And he whom Allah leaves in error cannot find a way.

47 Hearken to your Lord before there comes from Allah the day which there is no averting. You will have no refuge on that day, nor will it be yours to make a denial.

48 But if they turn away, We have not sent thee as a watcher over them. Thy duty is only to deliver (the message). And surely when We make man taste mercy from Us, he rejoices thereat; and if an evil afflicts them on account of what their hands have sent before, then surely man is ungrateful.

49 Allah’s is the kingdom of the heavens and the earth. He creates what He pleases. He grants females to whom He pleases and grants males to whom He pleases,

50 Or He grants them both males and females, and He makes whom He pleases, barren. Surely He is Knower, Powerful.a

51 And it is not vouchsafed to a mortal that Allah should speak to him, except by revelation or from behind a veil, or by sending a messenger and revealing by His permission what He pleases.a Surely He is High, Wise.

52 And thusa did We reveal to thee an inspired Bookb by Our command. Thou knewest not what the Book was, nor (what) Faith (was), but We made it a light, guiding thereby whom We please of Our servants. And surely thou guidest to the right path —

53 The path of Allah, to Whom belongs whatsoever is in the heavens and whatsoever is in the earth. Now surely to Allah do all affairs eventually come.

 2. Commentary:

50a. The birth of a daughter was looked upon by the Arabs as a calamity (see 16:58, 59), this being due to the low position which women held in society. The wonderful change brought about by Islam in the status of woman is clearly foreshadowed in this early revelation, where the daughter has the precedence over the son. [Back to verse 50]

51a. This verse shows how Allah speaks to a person or makes known His will to him. Three modes of this are stated: (1) by wahy, which word is generally translated as meaning revelation. The primary significance of the word wahy is, however, a hasty suggestion, and since the different kinds of revelation are spoken of here, the meaning intended must be the primary significance of the word. Hence the inspired word, which enters the hearts of the prophets and of the righteous, is called wahy or revelation, because it is like a hasty suggestion made directly to the heart of the inspired one, ilqa-’un fi-l-rau‘i. It is in this sense that a revelation is spoken of as being granted to the mother of Moses (28:7), and to the apostles of Jesus who were not prophets (5:111). (2) The second mode of Allah’s speaking to His servants is that He speaks from behind a veil — a scene is shown as in a vision carrying deeper significance, or words are heard by the person spoken to as from behind a veil. (3) The third form of revelation is that in which a messenger — an angel — is chosen by the Almighty to deliver His message to the person to whom He wishes to speak. This is the highest form of revelation, and such is the revelation of the Qur’an as granted to the Holy Prophet, being recited by Gabriel. This is called wahy matluww or revelation that is recited. This revelation is granted only to prophets, while the other two may also be granted to the righteous who are not raised to the dignity of prophethood. It should, however, be borne in mind that in all these cases the recipient of the revelation is granted certain other senses. He sees what others do not see and he hears words which others do not hear. It is, therefore, with what may be called the spiritual senses that he hears and sees and feels things which others do not hear, see, or feel. [Back to verse 51]

52a. Thus refers to the last mode of granting revelation, because the Holy Qur’an is spoken of as having been brought by the Angel Gabriel (2:97) or the Faithful Spirit (26:193). [Back to verse 52]

52b. The use of the word ruh ("inspired Book") as meaning inspiration, and not the soul, is conclusive here. The Qur’an is called the ruh or the spirit, because it gave life to a dead world. It is dead again, and again will life be breathed into it by the Qur’an. [Back to verse 52]



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Holy Quran Section > English Translation and Commentary of the Holy Quran by Maulana Muhammad Ali (Table of Contents) > Chapter 42 (Al-Shura- The Counsel) > Section 5 (Verses 44 to 53)

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