English Translation and Commentary of the Holy Quran (2010)

by Maulana Muhammad Ali

Chapter 3: Āl Imran — The Family of Amran (Revealed at Madinah: 20 sections, 200 verses)

Section 17 (Verses 3:156–3:171): Battle of Uhud Afforded a Distinction



یٰۤاَیُّہَا الَّذِیۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡا لَا تَکُوۡنُوۡا کَالَّذِیۡنَ کَفَرُوۡا وَ قَالُوۡا لِاِخۡوَانِہِمۡ اِذَا ضَرَبُوۡا فِی الۡاَرۡضِ اَوۡ کَانُوۡا غُزًّی لَّوۡ کَانُوۡا عِنۡدَنَا مَا مَاتُوۡا وَ مَا قُتِلُوۡا ۚ لِیَجۡعَلَ اللّٰہُ ذٰلِکَ حَسۡرَۃً فِیۡ قُلُوۡبِہِمۡ ؕ وَ اللّٰہُ یُحۡیٖ وَ یُمِیۡتُ ؕ وَ اللّٰہُ بِمَا تَعۡمَلُوۡنَ بَصِیۡرٌ ﴿۱۵۶﴾

3:156 O you who believe, do not be like those who disbelieve and say of their brethren when they travel in the earth or engage in fighting: If they had been with us, they would not have died, or been killed;1 that Allah may make it a regret in their hearts. And Allah gives life and causes death. And Allah is Seer of what you do.

وَ لَئِنۡ قُتِلۡتُمۡ فِیۡ سَبِیۡلِ اللّٰہِ اَوۡ مُتُّمۡ لَمَغۡفِرَۃٌ مِّنَ اللّٰہِ وَ رَحۡمَۃٌ خَیۡرٌ مِّمَّا یَجۡمَعُوۡنَ ﴿۱۵۷﴾

3:157 And if you are killed in Allah’s way or you die, surely Allah’s protection and (His) mercy are better than what they amass.

وَ لَئِنۡ مُّتُّمۡ اَوۡ قُتِلۡتُمۡ لَاِالَی اللّٰہِ تُحۡشَرُوۡنَ ﴿۱۵۸﴾

3:158 And if you die or you are killed, to Allah you are gathered.

فَبِمَا رَحۡمَۃٍ مِّنَ اللّٰہِ لِنۡتَ لَہُمۡ ۚ وَ لَوۡ کُنۡتَ فَظًّا غَلِیۡظَ الۡقَلۡبِ لَانۡفَضُّوۡا مِنۡ حَوۡلِکَ ۪ فَاعۡفُ عَنۡہُمۡ وَ اسۡتَغۡفِرۡ لَہُمۡ وَ شَاوِرۡہُمۡ فِی الۡاَمۡرِ ۚ فَاِذَا عَزَمۡتَ فَتَوَکَّلۡ عَلَی اللّٰہِ ؕ اِنَّ اللّٰہَ یُحِبُّ الۡمُتَوَکِّلِیۡنَ ﴿۱۵۹﴾

3:159 Thus it is by Allah’s mercy that you are gentle to them. And if you had been rough, hard-hearted, they would certainly have dispersed from around you.2 So pardon them and ask protection for them, and consult them in (important) matters.3 But when you have determined, put your trust in Allah.4 Surely Allah loves those who trust (in Him).

اِنۡ یَّنۡصُرۡکُمُ اللّٰہُ فَلَا غَالِبَ لَکُمۡ ۚ وَ اِنۡ یَّخۡذُلۡکُمۡ فَمَنۡ ذَا الَّذِیۡ یَنۡصُرُکُمۡ مِّنۡۢ بَعۡدِہٖ ؕ وَ عَلَی اللّٰہِ فَلۡیَتَوَکَّلِ الۡمُؤۡمِنُوۡنَ ﴿۱۶۰﴾

3:160 If Allah helps you, there is none that can overcome you; and if He forsakes you, who is there that can help you after Him? And in Allah should the believers put their trust.

وَ مَا کَانَ لِنَبِیٍّ اَنۡ یَّغُلَّ ؕ وَ مَنۡ یَّغۡلُلۡ یَاۡتِ بِمَا غَلَّ یَوۡمَ الۡقِیٰمَۃِ ۚ ثُمَّ تُوَفّٰی کُلُّ نَفۡسٍ مَّا کَسَبَتۡ وَ ہُمۡ لَا یُظۡلَمُوۡنَ ﴿۱۶۱﴾

3:161 And it is not for a prophet to act dishonestly. And whoever acts dishonestly will bring his dishonesty on the day of Resurrection. Then shall every soul be paid back fully what it has earned, and they will not be wronged.

اَفَمَنِ اتَّبَعَ رِضۡوَانَ اللّٰہِ کَمَنۡۢ بَآءَ بِسَخَطٍ مِّنَ اللّٰہِ وَ مَاۡوٰىہُ جَہَنَّمُ ؕ وَ بِئۡسَ الۡمَصِیۡرُ ﴿۱۶۲﴾

3:162 Is then he who follows the pleasure of Allah like him who incurs Allah’s displeasure, and his abode is hell? And it is an evil destination.

ہُمۡ دَرَجٰتٌ عِنۡدَ اللّٰہِ ؕ وَ اللّٰہُ بَصِیۡرٌۢ بِمَا یَعۡمَلُوۡنَ ﴿۱۶۳﴾

3:163 There are grades with Allah. And Allah is Seer of what they do.

لَقَدۡ مَنَّ اللّٰہُ عَلَی الۡمُؤۡمِنِیۡنَ اِذۡ بَعَثَ فِیۡہِمۡ رَسُوۡلًا مِّنۡ اَنۡفُسِہِمۡ یَتۡلُوۡا عَلَیۡہِمۡ اٰیٰتِہٖ وَ یُزَکِّیۡہِمۡ وَ یُعَلِّمُہُمُ الۡکِتٰبَ وَ الۡحِکۡمَۃَ ۚ وَ اِنۡ کَانُوۡا مِنۡ قَبۡلُ لَفِیۡ ضَلٰلٍ مُّبِیۡنٍ ﴿۱۶۴﴾

3:164 Certainly Allah conferred a favour on the believers when He raised among them a Messenger from among themselves, reciting to them His messages and purifying them, and teaching them the Book and the Wisdom, although before that they were surely in manifest error.

اَوَ لَمَّاۤ اَصَابَتۡکُمۡ مُّصِیۡبَۃٌ قَدۡ اَصَبۡتُمۡ مِّثۡلَیۡہَا ۙ قُلۡتُمۡ اَنّٰی ہٰذَا ؕ قُلۡ ہُوَ مِنۡ عِنۡدِ اَنۡفُسِکُمۡ ؕ اِنَّ اللّٰہَ عَلٰی کُلِّ شَیۡءٍ قَدِیۡرٌ ﴿۱۶۵﴾

3:165 What! When a misfortune befell you, and you had inflicted twice as much, you say: From where is this? Say: It is from yourselves. Surely Allah is Powerful over all things.

وَ مَاۤ اَصَابَکُمۡ یَوۡمَ الۡتَقَی الۡجَمۡعٰنِ فَبِاِذۡنِ اللّٰہِ وَ لِیَعۡلَمَ الۡمُؤۡمِنِیۡنَ ﴿۱۶۶﴾ۙ

3:166 And what befell you on the day when the two armies met was by Allah’s permission, that He might know the believers,

وَ لِیَعۡلَمَ الَّذِیۡنَ نَافَقُوۡا ۚۖ وَ قِیۡلَ لَہُمۡ تَعَالَوۡا قَاتِلُوۡا فِیۡ سَبِیۡلِ اللّٰہِ اَوِ ادۡفَعُوۡا ؕ قَالُوۡا لَوۡ نَعۡلَمُ قِتَالًا لَّا تَّبَعۡنٰکُمۡ ؕ ہُمۡ لِلۡکُفۡرِ یَوۡمَئِذٍ اَقۡرَبُ مِنۡہُمۡ لِلۡاِیۡمَانِ ۚ یَقُوۡلُوۡنَ بِاَفۡوَاہِہِمۡ مَّا لَیۡسَ فِیۡ قُلُوۡبِہِمۡ ؕ وَ اللّٰہُ اَعۡلَمُ بِمَا یَکۡتُمُوۡنَ ﴿۱۶۷﴾ۚ

3:167 and that He might know the hypocrites. And it was said to them: Come, fight in Allah’s way, or defend yourselves.5 They said: If we knew fighting, we would have followed you. They were on that day nearer to disbelief than to belief; they say with their mouths what is not in their hearts. And Allah best knows what they conceal.

اَلَّذِیۡنَ قَالُوۡا لِاِخۡوَانِہِمۡ وَ قَعَدُوۡا لَوۡ اَطَاعُوۡنَا مَا قُتِلُوۡا ؕ قُلۡ فَادۡرَءُوۡا عَنۡ اَنۡفُسِکُمُ الۡمَوۡتَ اِنۡ کُنۡتُمۡ صٰدِقِیۡنَ ﴿۱۶۸﴾

3:168 Those who said of their brethren whilst they (themselves) held back: If they had obeyed us, they would not have been killed. Say: Avert death from yourselves, if you are truthful.

وَ لَا تَحۡسَبَنَّ الَّذِیۡنَ قُتِلُوۡا فِیۡ سَبِیۡلِ اللّٰہِ اَمۡوَاتًا ؕ بَلۡ اَحۡیَآءٌ عِنۡدَ رَبِّہِمۡ یُرۡزَقُوۡنَ ﴿۱۶۹﴾ۙ

3:169 And do not think of those who are killed in Allah’s way as dead. Rather, they are alive being provided sustenance from their Lord,

فَرِحِیۡنَ بِمَاۤ اٰتٰہُمُ اللّٰہُ مِنۡ فَضۡلِہٖ ۙ وَ یَسۡتَبۡشِرُوۡنَ بِالَّذِیۡنَ لَمۡ یَلۡحَقُوۡا بِہِمۡ مِّنۡ خَلۡفِہِمۡ ۙ اَلَّا خَوۡفٌ عَلَیۡہِمۡ وَ لَا ہُمۡ یَحۡزَنُوۡنَ ﴿۱۷۰﴾ۘ

3:170 rejoicing in what Allah has given them out of His grace, and they rejoice for the sake of those who, (being left) behind them, have not yet joined them, that they have no fear, nor shall they grieve.

یَسۡتَبۡشِرُوۡنَ بِنِعۡمَۃٍ مِّنَ اللّٰہِ وَ فَضۡلٍ ۙ وَّ اَنَّ اللّٰہَ لَا یُضِیۡعُ اَجۡرَ الۡمُؤۡمِنِیۡنَ ﴿۱۷۱﴾ۚ٪ۛ

3:171 They rejoice for Allah’s favour and (His) grace, and that Allah does not waste the reward of the believers.



  1. By “their brethren” are meant their relatives who were sincere in professing Islam, and who had to lay down their lives in defence of their faith.
  2. The Quran calls attention to the Prophet’s gentle dealing with those around him when speaking of his experience in the field of battle as a general, a capacity which required him to be very strict in punishing any delin­quency. He was the ablest general in leading his men, yet his gentle manners and his forbearance in dealing with his friends as well as foes stand in remarkable contrast with his capacity as a commander in the field of battle. After the Uhud trouble he did not speak even a harsh word to those who were guilty of disobey­ing his orders.
  3. It was the majority decision to meet the enemy in the open field that had brought about the present trouble, but just at this juncture Divine revela­tion affirmed the principle of adhering to decision by counsel.
  4. Trusting in Allah does not imply inaction. Everything necessary is to be done. A course of action must be determined and then in pursuing that course trust must be placed in Allah. The consequences must then be accepted.
  5. The words show clearly that, in the language of the Quran, fighting in Allah’s way carries the significance of fighting in self-defence.