English Translation and Commentary of the Holy Quran (2010)

by Maulana Muhammad Ali

Chapter 16: Al-Nahl — The Bee (Revealed at Makkah: 16 sections, 128 verses)

Section 12 (Verses 16:84–16:89): Prophets Testify


وَ یَوۡمَ نَبۡعَثُ مِنۡ کُلِّ اُمَّۃٍ شَہِیۡدًا ثُمَّ لَا یُؤۡذَنُ لِلَّذِیۡنَ کَفَرُوۡا وَ لَا ہُمۡ یُسۡتَعۡتَبُوۡنَ ﴿۸۴﴾

16:84 And on the day when We raise up a witness out of every nation,1 then permission (to offer excuse) will not be given to the disbelievers, nor will they be allowed to make amends.

وَ اِذَا رَاَ الَّذِیۡنَ ظَلَمُوا الۡعَذَابَ فَلَا یُخَفَّفُ عَنۡہُمۡ وَ لَا ہُمۡ یُنۡظَرُوۡنَ ﴿۸۵﴾

16:85 And when the wrongdoers see the punishment, it will not be lightened for them, nor will they be given respite.

وَ اِذَا رَاَ الَّذِیۡنَ اَشۡرَکُوۡا شُرَکَآءَہُمۡ قَالُوۡا رَبَّنَا ہٰۤؤُلَآءِ شُرَکَآؤُنَا الَّذِیۡنَ کُنَّا نَدۡعُوۡا مِنۡ دُوۡنِکَ ۚ فَاَلۡقَوۡا اِلَیۡہِمُ الۡقَوۡلَ اِنَّکُمۡ لَکٰذِبُوۡنَ ﴿ۚ۸۶﴾

16:86 And when those who set up partners (with Allah) see their associate-gods, they will say: Our Lord, these are our associate-gods on whom we called besides You. But they will throw back at them the word: Surely you are liars.

وَ اَلۡقَوۡا اِلَی اللّٰہِ یَوۡمَئِذِۣ السَّلَمَ وَ ضَلَّ عَنۡہُمۡ مَّا کَانُوۡا یَفۡتَرُوۡنَ ﴿۸۷﴾

16:87 And they will tender submission to Allah on that day, and what they used to forge will fail them.

اَلَّذِیۡنَ کَفَرُوۡا وَ صَدُّوۡا عَنۡ سَبِیۡلِ اللّٰہِ زِدۡنٰہُمۡ عَذَابًا فَوۡقَ الۡعَذَابِ بِمَا کَانُوۡا یُفۡسِدُوۡنَ ﴿۸۸﴾

16:88 Those who disbelieve and hinder (people) from Allah’s way, We will add punishment to their punishment because they made mischief.

وَ یَوۡمَ نَبۡعَثُ فِیۡ کُلِّ اُمَّۃٍ شَہِیۡدًا عَلَیۡہِمۡ مِّنۡ اَنۡفُسِہِمۡ وَ جِئۡنَا بِکَ شَہِیۡدًا عَلٰی ہٰۤؤُلَآءِ ؕ وَ نَزَّلۡنَا عَلَیۡکَ الۡکِتٰبَ تِبۡیَانًا لِّکُلِّ شَیۡءٍ وَّ ہُدًی وَّ رَحۡمَۃً وَّ بُشۡرٰی لِلۡمُسۡلِمِیۡنَ ﴿٪۸۹﴾

16:89 And on the day when We raise up in every people a witness against them from among themselves, and bring you as a witness against these.2 And We have revealed the Book to you explaining all things,3 and a guidance and mercy and good news for those who submit.


  1. In this verse, as well as in the concluding verse (v. 89) of this section, the broad humanitarian doctrine is taught that a prophet has been raised in every nation. There are religions which claim hundreds of prophets for a single nation, like the house of Israel, but grudge even a single true prophet to other vast coun­tries and nations. Islam rejects all such narrow views of the spiritual provi­dence of Allah, Who is not the “Lord God of Israel”, but the Lord of all nations.
  2. By these are meant the Muslim community throughout the world and in all ages.
  3. By everything is meant every basic principle necessary for the spiri­tual welfare of man. The sunnah, the practice of the Prophet, as illustrating the precepts of the Quran, supplies the details.