English Translation and Commentary of the Holy Quran (2010)

by Maulana Muhammad Ali

Chapter 14: Ibrahim — Abraham (Revealed at Makkah: 7 sections, 52 verses)

Section 6 (Verses 14:35–14:41): Abraham’s Prayer


وَ اِذۡ قَالَ اِبۡرٰہِیۡمُ رَبِّ اجۡعَلۡ ہٰذَا الۡبَلَدَ اٰمِنًا وَّ اجۡنُبۡنِیۡ وَ بَنِیَّ اَنۡ نَّعۡبُدَ الۡاَصۡنَامَ ﴿ؕ۳۵﴾

14:35 And when Abraham said: My Lord, make this city secure, and save me and my sons from worshipping idols.1

رَبِّ اِنَّہُنَّ اَضۡلَلۡنَ کَثِیۡرًا مِّنَ النَّاسِ ۚ فَمَنۡ تَبِعَنِیۡ فَاِنَّہٗ مِنِّیۡ ۚ وَ مَنۡ عَصَانِیۡ فَاِنَّکَ غَفُوۡرٌ رَّحِیۡمٌ ﴿۳۶﴾

14:36 My Lord, surely they have led many people astray.2 So whoever follows me, he is surely of me; and whoever disobeys me, You surely are Forgiving, Merciful.3

رَبَّنَاۤ اِنِّیۡۤ اَسۡکَنۡتُ مِنۡ ذُرِّیَّتِیۡ بِوَادٍ غَیۡرِ ذِیۡ زَرۡعٍ عِنۡدَ بَیۡتِکَ الۡمُحَرَّمِ ۙ رَبَّنَا لِیُـقِیۡمُوا الصَّلٰوۃَ فَاجۡعَلۡ اَفۡئِدَۃً مِّنَ النَّاسِ تَہۡوِیۡۤ اِلَیۡہِمۡ وَارۡ زُقۡہُمۡ مِّنَ الثَّمَرٰتِ لَعَلَّہُمۡ یَشۡکُرُوۡنَ ﴿۳۷﴾

14:37 Our Lord, I have settled a part of my offspring in a valley unproductive of fruit near Your Sacred House,4 our Lord, that they may keep up prayer; so make the hearts of some people yearn towards them, and provide them with fruits; perhaps they may be grateful.

رَبَّنَاۤ اِنَّکَ تَعۡلَمُ مَا نُخۡفِیۡ وَ مَا نُعۡلِنُ ؕ وَ مَا یَخۡفٰی عَلَی اللّٰہِ مِنۡ شَیۡءٍ فِی الۡاَرۡضِ وَ لَا فِی السَّمَآءِ ﴿۳۸﴾

14:38 Our Lord, surely You know what we hide and what we proclaim. And nothing is hidden from Allah, either in the earth or in the heaven.

اَلۡحَمۡدُ لِلّٰہِ الَّذِیۡ وَہَبَ لِیۡ عَلَی الۡکِبَرِ اِسۡمٰعِیۡلَ وَ اِسۡحٰقَ ؕ اِنَّ رَبِّیۡ لَسَمِیۡعُ الدُّعَآءِ ﴿۳۹﴾

14:39 Praise be to Allah, Who has given me, in old age, Ishmael and Isaac! Surely my Lord is the Hearer of prayer.

رَبِّ اجۡعَلۡنِیۡ مُقِیۡمَ الصَّلٰوۃِ وَ مِنۡ ذُرِّیَّتِیۡ ٭ۖ رَبَّنَا وَ تَقَبَّلۡ دُعَآءِ ﴿۴۰﴾

14:40 My Lord, make me keep up prayer and (those) from my offspring (too), our Lord, and accept my prayer.

رَبَّنَا اغۡفِرۡ لِیۡ وَ لِوَالِدَیَّ وَ لِلۡمُؤۡمِنِیۡنَ یَوۡمَ یَقُوۡمُ الۡحِسَابُ ﴿٪۴۱﴾

14:41 Our Lord, grant me protection and my parents and the believers on the day when the reckoning comes to pass.


  1. That idolatry received a death-blow from the hands of one of Abra­ham’s descendants shows that Abraham’s prayer was not in vain.
  2. Idols do not actually lead people astray; the meaning is that it is on account of them that people go astray.
  3. The prayer of Abraham is in fact the prayer of the Holy Prophet and illustrates the breadth of his view. Those who follow him are, of course, his own, but he does not reject even those who disobey him, for he prays for Allah’s mercy and protection even for them.
  4. According to a Hadith report (Bukhari, 60:9), Abraham brought Hagar and Ishmael, and settled them near the ruins of the Sacred House, the Ka‘bah. This, as the hadith states, was done under a Divine commandment. For when Abraham was going back, on leaving them both in this wilderness, where there was no town at this time, Hagar asked him, Is it by Allah’s commandment that you are doing this? Abraham’s reply was, Yes. Then said Hagar: “Allah will not leave us to perish”. It is further stated that, when no water was left with her, Hagar ran to and fro, between the Safa and the Marwah, to find out if there was any caravan going that way. It was on this occasion that she saw an angel, who pointed to her a place where she could find water. This was the place known now as Zamzam. It was due to this water that some people settled there. Even the Bible accepts that Ishmael’s descendants settled in Arabia.