English Translation and Commentary of the Holy Quran (2010)
by Maulana Muhammad Ali
Chapter 4: Al-Nisa — Women (Revealed at Madinah: 24 sections, 176 verses)
Section 11 (Verses 4:77–4:87): Attitude of the Hypocrites
اَلَمۡ تَرَ اِلَی الَّذِیۡنَ قِیۡلَ لَہُمۡ کُفُّوۡۤا اَیۡدِیَکُمۡ وَ اَقِیۡمُوا الصَّلٰوۃَ وَ اٰتُوا الزَّکٰوۃَ ۚ فَلَمَّا کُتِبَ عَلَیۡہِمُ الۡقِتَالُ اِذَا فَرِیۡقٌ مِّنۡہُمۡ یَخۡشَوۡنَ النَّاسَ کَخَشۡیَۃِ اللّٰہِ اَوۡ اَشَدَّ خَشۡیَۃً ۚ وَ قَالُوۡا رَبَّنَا لِمَ کَتَبۡتَ عَلَیۡنَا الۡقِتَالَ ۚ لَوۡ لَاۤ اَخَّرۡتَنَاۤ اِلٰۤی اَجَلٍ قَرِیۡبٍ ؕ قُلۡ مَتَاعُ الدُّنۡیَا قَلِیۡلٌ ۚ وَ الۡاٰخِرَۃُ خَیۡرٌ لِّمَنِ اتَّقٰی ۟ وَ لَا تُظۡلَمُوۡنَ فَتِیۡلًا ﴿۷۷﴾
4:77 Have you not seen those to whom it was said: Withhold your hands, and keep up prayer and give the due charity. But when fighting is prescribed for them, then some of them fear men as they ought to fear Allah, or with a greater fear, and say: Our Lord, why have You ordained fighting for us? Would You not grant us respite for a little while?1 Say: The enjoyment of this world is short, and the Hereafter is better for him who keeps his duty. And you will not be dealt with unjustly in the least.
اَیۡنَ مَا تَکُوۡنُوۡا یُدۡرِکۡکُّمُ الۡمَوۡتُ وَ لَوۡ کُنۡتُمۡ فِیۡ بُرُوۡجٍ مُّشَیَّدَۃٍ ؕ وَ اِنۡ تُصِبۡہُمۡ حَسَنَۃٌ یَّقُوۡلُوۡا ہٰذِہٖ مِنۡ عِنۡدِ اللّٰہِ ۚ وَ اِنۡ تُصِبۡہُمۡ سَیِّئَۃٌ یَّقُوۡلُوۡا ہٰذِہٖ مِنۡ عِنۡدِکَ ؕ قُلۡ کُلٌّ مِّنۡ عِنۡدِ اللّٰہِ ؕ فَمَالِ ہٰۤؤُلَآءِ الۡقَوۡمِ لَا یَکَادُوۡنَ یَفۡقَہُوۡنَ حَدِیۡثًا ﴿۷۸﴾
4:78 Wherever you are, death will overtake you, though you are in towers, raised high. And if good befalls them, they say: This is from Allah; and if a misfortune befalls them, they say: This is from you. Say: All is from Allah. But what is the matter with these people that they make no effort to understand anything?
مَاۤ اَصَابَکَ مِنۡ حَسَنَۃٍ فَمِنَ اللّٰہِ ۫ وَ مَاۤ اَصَابَکَ مِنۡ سَیِّئَۃٍ فَمِنۡ نَّفۡسِکَ ؕ وَ اَرۡسَلۡنٰکَ لِلنَّاسِ رَسُوۡلًا ؕ وَ کَفٰی بِاللّٰہِ شَہِیۡدًا ﴿۷۹﴾
4:79 Whatever good befalls you (O man), it is from Allah, and whatever misfortune befalls you, it is from yourself.2 And We have sent you (O Prophet) to mankind as a Messenger. And Allah is sufficient as a witness.
مَنۡ یُّطِعِ الرَّسُوۡلَ فَقَدۡ اَطَاعَ اللّٰہَ ۚ وَ مَنۡ تَوَلّٰی فَمَاۤ اَرۡسَلۡنٰکَ عَلَیۡہِمۡ حَفِیۡظًا ﴿ؕ۸۰﴾
4:80 Whoever obeys the Messenger, he indeed obeys Allah. And whoever turns away, We have not sent you as a keeper over them.
وَ یَقُوۡلُوۡنَ طَاعَۃٌ ۫ فَاِذَا بَرَزُوۡا مِنۡ عِنۡدِکَ بَیَّتَ طَآئِفَۃٌ مِّنۡہُمۡ غَیۡرَ الَّذِیۡ تَقُوۡلُ ؕ وَ اللّٰہُ یَکۡتُبُ مَا یُبَیِّتُوۡنَ ۚ فَاَعۡرِضۡ عَنۡہُمۡ وَ تَوَکَّلۡ عَلَی اللّٰہِ ؕ وَ کَفٰی بِاللّٰہِ وَکِیۡلًا ﴿۸۱﴾
4:81 And they say: Obedience. But when they go out from your presence, a group of them plan by night doing otherwise than what you say. And Allah writes down what they plan by night, so turn aside from them and trust in Allah. And Allah is sufficient as having charge of affairs.
اَفَلَا یَتَدَبَّرُوۡنَ الۡقُرۡاٰنَ ؕ وَ لَوۡ کَانَ مِنۡ عِنۡدِ غَیۡرِ اللّٰہِ لَوَجَدُوۡا فِیۡہِ اخۡتِلَافًا کَثِیۡرًا ﴿۸۲﴾
4:82 Will they not then meditate on the Quran? And if it were from any other than Allah, they would have found in it many a discrepancy.3
وَ اِذَا جَآءَہُمۡ اَمۡرٌ مِّنَ الۡاَمۡنِ اَوِ الۡخَوۡفِ اَذَاعُوۡا بِہٖ ؕ وَ لَوۡ رَدُّوۡہُ اِلَی الرَّسُوۡلِ وَ اِلٰۤی اُولِی الۡاَمۡرِ مِنۡہُمۡ لَعَلِمَہُ الَّذِیۡنَ یَسۡتَنۡۢبِطُوۡنَہٗ مِنۡہُمۡ ؕ وَ لَوۡ لَا فَضۡلُ اللّٰہِ عَلَیۡکُمۡ وَ رَحۡمَتُہٗ لَاتَّبَعۡتُمُ الشَّیۡطٰنَ اِلَّا قَلِیۡلًا ﴿۸۳﴾
4:83 But if any news of security or fear comes to them, they spread it about. And if they had referred it to the Messenger and to those in authority among them, those of them who can search out knowledge of it would have known it. And if it were not for the grace of Allah upon you and His mercy, you would certainly have followed the devil except a few.
فَقَاتِلۡ فِیۡ سَبِیۡلِ اللّٰہِ ۚ لَا تُکَلَّفُ اِلَّا نَفۡسَکَ وَ حَرِّضِ الۡمُؤۡمِنِیۡنَ ۚ عَسَی اللّٰہُ اَنۡ یَّکُفَّ بَاۡسَ الَّذِیۡنَ کَفَرُوۡا ؕ وَ اللّٰہُ اَشَدُّ بَاۡسًا وَّ اَشَدُّ تَنۡکِیۡلًا ﴿۸۴﴾
4:84 Fight then in Allah’s way — you are not responsible except for yourself; and urge on the believers. It may be that Allah will restrain the fighting of those who disbelieve. And Allah is stronger in prowess and stronger to give exemplary punishment.4
مَنۡ یَّشۡفَعۡ شَفَاعَۃً حَسَنَۃً یَّکُنۡ لَّہٗ نَصِیۡبٌ مِّنۡہَا ۚ وَ مَنۡ یَّشۡفَعۡ شَفَاعَۃً سَیِّئَۃً یَّکُنۡ لَّہٗ کِفۡلٌ مِّنۡہَا ؕ وَ کَانَ اللّٰہُ عَلٰی کُلِّ شَیۡءٍ مُّقِیۡتًا ﴿۸۵﴾
4:85 Whoever intercedes in a good cause has a share of it, and whoever intercedes in an evil cause has a portion of it. And Allah is ever Keeper over all things.5
وَ اِذَا حُیِّیۡتُمۡ بِتَحِیَّۃٍ فَحَیُّوۡا بِاَحۡسَنَ مِنۡہَاۤ اَوۡ رُدُّوۡہَا ؕ اِنَّ اللّٰہَ کَانَ عَلٰی کُلِّ شَیۡءٍ حَسِیۡبًا ﴿۸۶﴾
4:86 And when you are greeted with a greeting, greet with one better than it, or return it.6 Surely Allah ever takes account of all things.
اَللّٰہُ لَاۤ اِلٰہَ اِلَّا ہُوَ ؕ لَیَجۡمَعَنَّکُمۡ اِلٰی یَوۡمِ الۡقِیٰمَۃِ لَا رَیۡبَ فِیۡہِ ؕ وَ مَنۡ اَصۡدَقُ مِنَ اللّٰہِ حَدِیۡثًا ﴿٪۸۷﴾
4:87 Allah, there is no god but He — He will certainly gather you together on the day of Resurrection, there is no doubt in it. And who is more true in word than Allah?
- Had there been any hope of plunder to animate the ranks of Muslims, those who loved this world most, who are here called the hypocrites, would have been foremost in fighting; but as they knew that they were fighting against odds, they considered acting on this order as equivalent to courting death, and requested to be granted a respite until they died a natural death. ↩
- Good and evil, or benefits and misfortunes, proceed from Allah; but while He sends benefits from Himself, i.e. out of His beneficence, no evil or misfortune afflicts a man unless his own hands have called for it. The previous verse states that the hypocrites attributed their misfortunes to the Prophet; they are told, in the words “All is from Allah”, that misfortunes were sent by Allah. This verse tells them that, though sent by Allah, the immediate cause of these misfortunes was to be found in their own doings. ↩
- The Quran was not written out and given on one occasion, but it continued to be delivered in small portions during twenty-three years under the most varying circumstances. But what is striking throughout the entire revelation is that it keeps up one and the same strain — absolute submission to Allah, entire trust in Him, perfect confidence of future success, a liberal view of humanity, an attitude of charity towards all nations and religions, and goodness to all alike. The spirit of the revelations to the solitary, persecuted, and rejected preacher of Makkah does not differ in these and a hundred other particulars from the spirit of the revelations to the sole temporal and spiritual monarch of Arabia. ↩
- The primary duty to defend Islam lay on the Holy Prophet alone, as against all the forces of Arabia. This shows that he never put any trust in the prowess of his followers, and his confidence was based solely on Divine help. ↩
- The meaning is that he who joins himself to another and assists him, and becomes to him as one of a pair or an intercessor in doing good or evil, and thus aids him and strengthens him, partakes with him the benefit or the harm of it. Interceding here also implies that one institutes for another a way of good or a way of evil which the other imitates, and thus becomes to him as one of a pair. The connection is clear; the Prophet made himself an example of good for others to imitate or to aid him. For the meaning of intercession see 2:255 footnote 1. ↩
- A greeting is a prayer for the good of another; taḥiyyah, the word used for it here, meaning originally a prayer for one’s long life. The minimum requirement is that a greeting must be returned in the same words. What is really aimed at is that a Muslim should always wish good for, or do good to, his brother, and the other is required to do greater good in return. ↩