Last Four Chapters of the Holy Quran starting with ‘Qul’
by Nasir Ahmad
Chapter 109: Al-Kafirun — The Disbelievers
بِسۡمِ اللّٰہِ الرَّحۡمٰنِ الرَّحِیۡمِ
Bis-mil laa-hir Rah-maa-nir Ra-heem.
In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful.
قُلۡ یٰۤاَیُّہَا الۡکٰفِرُوۡنَ ۙ﴿۱﴾
1. Qul yaa-ay-yu-hal kaa-fi-roon,
1. Say: O disbelievers,
لَاۤ اَعۡبُدُ مَا تَعۡبُدُوۡنَ ۙ﴿۲﴾
2. Laa a-bu-du maa ta-bu-doon,
2. I serve not what you serve,
وَ لَاۤ اَنۡتُمۡ عٰبِدُوۡنَ مَاۤ اَعۡبُدُ ۚ﴿۳﴾
3. Wa laa an-tum aa-bi-doo-na maa a-bud,
3. Nor do you serve Him Whom I serve,
وَ لَاۤ اَنَا عَابِدٌ مَّا عَبَدۡتُّمۡ ۙ﴿۴﴾
4. Wa laa a-naa aa-bi-dum maa a-bat-tum,
4. Nor shall I serve that which ye serve,
وَ لَاۤ اَنۡتُمۡ عٰبِدُوۡنَ مَاۤ اَعۡبُدُ ؕ﴿۵﴾
5. Wa laa an-tum aa-bi-doo-na maa a-bud.
5. Nor do you serve Him Whom I serve,
لَکُمۡ دِیۡنُکُمۡ وَلِیَ دِیۡنِ ٪﴿۶﴾
6. La-kum dee-nu-kum wa li-ya deen.
6. For you is your recompense and for me my recompense.
The disbelievers are told in this chapter that they shall be requited for their misdeeds, while the Holy Prophet [Muhammad] (pbuh) and the faithful will reap the reward of their deeds.
Among the various significances of din is recompense or reward, and this is what is meant here. It is a prophecy that those who serve Allah will have a goodly reward from Him, while those who serve idols will not obtain any help from false gods.
This chapter also tells us that a true believer is not merely a lip-professor of beliefs but rather he is such a person whose practical life is clothed in the true concept of the Oneness of Allah as he seeks to win the pleasure of the Almighty.
To appreciate fully the idea of the perfect Oneness of Allah, we must first understand what worship means. Man is said to worship something when he either hopes for some benefit from it or fears some injury from it. It is solely because of these two reasons that the world worships other gods besides Allah, whether they be elements of nature, or heavenly bodies, or trees, rocks, human beings, animals, past saints, prophets, shrines or some other force. In order to negate the alleged divinity of these false deities, the Holy Quran appeals to the inner nature of man as it asks:
قُلۡ اَنَدۡعُوۡا مِنۡ دُوۡنِ اللّٰہِ مَا لَا یَنۡفَعُنَا وَ لَا یَضُرُّنَا
“Say: Shall we call besides Allah, on that which profits us not, nor harms us….”(The Holy Quran, 6:70).
In other words, whatever things you worship in the hope of gaining some benefit or in the fear of receiving some injury in reality has no power whatever, and there is no need, therefore, to worship them.
However, behind the worship of all these gods there is another hidden reality, and that is, in adoring all these false deities besides Allah, the real object of man is to gain advantage for himself or to save himself from loss.
According to the Holy Quran, perfect acceptance of the Oneness of Allah entails not only the abandonment of all expectations of benefit or harm from anything except Allah, but also the sacrifice of all egoistic pleasures and desires which incite man to worship false gods either for gain or through fear of injury.
Regarding the last verse, those who think that these words indicate that the Holy Prophet [Muhammad] (pbuh) had despaired of the disbelievers are mistaken. Not for a moment did he cease to invite the disbelievers to accept Islam and to forsake the worship of idols.