English Translation and Commentary of the Holy Quran (2010)

by Maulana Muhammad Ali

Chapter 46: Al-Ahqaf — The Sandhills (Revealed at Makkah: 4 sections, 35 verses)

Section 3 (Verses 46:21–46:26): The Fate of Ad


وَ اذۡکُرۡ اَخَا عَادٍ ؕ اِذۡ اَنۡذَرَ قَوۡمَہٗ بِالۡاَحۡقَافِ وَ قَدۡ خَلَتِ النُّذُرُ مِنۡۢ بَیۡنِ یَدَیۡہِ وَ مِنۡ خَلۡفِہٖۤ اَلَّا تَعۡبُدُوۡۤا اِلَّا اللّٰہَ ؕ اِنِّیۡۤ اَخَافُ عَلَیۡکُمۡ عَذَابَ یَوۡمٍ عَظِیۡمٍ ﴿۲۱﴾

46:21 And mention the brother of Ād; when he warned his people in the sandy plains1 — and warners indeed came before him and after him — saying: Serve none but Allah. Surely I fear for you the punishment of a grievous day.

قَالُوۡۤا اَجِئۡتَنَا لِتَاۡفِکَنَا عَنۡ اٰلِہَتِنَا ۚ فَاۡتِنَا بِمَا تَعِدُنَاۤ اِنۡ کُنۡتَ مِنَ الصّٰدِقِیۡنَ ﴿۲۲﴾

46:22 They said: Have you come to us to turn us away from our gods? Then bring us that (punishment) with which you threaten us, if you are truthful.

قَالَ اِنَّمَا الۡعِلۡمُ عِنۡدَ اللّٰہِ ۫ۖ وَ اُبَلِّغُکُمۡ مَّاۤ اُرۡسِلۡتُ بِہٖ وَ لٰکِنِّیۡۤ اَرٰىکُمۡ قَوۡمًا تَجۡہَلُوۡنَ ﴿۲۳﴾

46:23 He said: The knowledge is only with Allah, and I deliver to you that with which I am sent, but I see you are an ignorant people.

فَلَمَّا رَاَوۡہُ عَارِضًا مُّسۡتَقۡبِلَ اَوۡدِیَتِہِمۡ ۙ قَالُوۡا ہٰذَا عَارِضٌ مُّمۡطِرُنَا ؕ بَلۡ ہُوَ مَا اسۡتَعۡجَلۡتُمۡ بِہٖ ؕ رِیۡحٌ فِیۡہَا عَذَابٌ اَلِیۡمٌ ﴿ۙ۲۴﴾

46:24 So when they saw it — a cloud advancing towards their valleys, they said: This is a cloud bringing us rain. No, it is what you sought to hasten, a wind in which is painful punishment,

تُدَمِّرُ کُلَّ شَیۡءٍۭ بِاَمۡرِ رَبِّہَا فَاَصۡبَحُوۡا لَا یُرٰۤی اِلَّا مَسٰکِنُہُمۡ ؕ کَذٰلِکَ نَجۡزِی الۡقَوۡمَ الۡمُجۡرِمِیۡنَ ﴿۲۵﴾

46:25 destroying everything by the command of its Lord. So at dawn nothing could be seen except their dwellings. Thus do We reward the guilty people.

وَ لَقَدۡ مَکَّنّٰہُمۡ فِیۡمَاۤ اِنۡ مَّکَّنّٰکُمۡ فِیۡہِ وَ جَعَلۡنَا لَہُمۡ سَمۡعًا وَّ اَبۡصَارًا وَّ اَفۡـِٕدَۃً ۫ۖ فَمَاۤ اَغۡنٰی عَنۡہُمۡ سَمۡعُہُمۡ وَ لَاۤ اَبۡصَارُہُمۡ وَ لَاۤ اَفۡـِٕدَتُہُمۡ مِّنۡ شَیۡءٍ اِذۡ کَانُوۡا یَجۡحَدُوۡنَ ۙ بِاٰیٰتِ اللّٰہِ وَ حَاقَ بِہِمۡ مَّا کَانُوۡا بِہٖ یَسۡتَہۡزِءُوۡنَ ﴿٪۲۶﴾

46:26 And certainly We had given them power in matters in which We have not empowered you, and We had given them ears and eyes and hearts, but neither their ears, nor their eyes, nor their hearts availed them in the least, since they denied the messages of Allah, and what they mocked at beset them.


  1. The brother of a people signifies their prophet, Hūd being the prophet sent to Ād. The “sandy plains” where these people lived (al-aḥqāf) are located in the region of Hadramaut in Arabia.