English Translation and Commentary of the Holy Quran (2010)

by Maulana Muhammad Ali

Chapter 48: Al-Fath — The Victory (Revealed at Madinah: 4 sections, 29 verses)

Section 2 (Verses 48:11–48:17): The Defaulters


سَیَقُوۡلُ لَکَ الۡمُخَلَّفُوۡنَ مِنَ الۡاَعۡرَابِ شَغَلَتۡنَاۤ اَمۡوَالُنَا وَ اَہۡلُوۡنَا فَاسۡتَغۡفِرۡ لَنَا ۚ یَقُوۡلُوۡنَ بِاَلۡسِنَتِہِمۡ مَّا لَیۡسَ فِیۡ قُلُوۡبِہِمۡ ؕ قُلۡ فَمَنۡ یَّمۡلِکُ لَکُمۡ مِّنَ اللّٰہِ شَیۡئًا اِنۡ اَرَادَ بِکُمۡ ضَرًّا اَوۡ اَرَادَ بِکُمۡ نَفۡعًا ؕ بَلۡ کَانَ اللّٰہُ بِمَا تَعۡمَلُوۡنَ خَبِیۡرًا ﴿۱۱﴾

48:11 Those of the dwellers of the desert who lagged behind will say to you: Our property and our families kept us busy, so ask forgiveness for us. They say with their tongues what is not in their hearts. Say: Then who can control anything at all for you from Allah, if He intends to do you harm or if He intends to do you good. Indeed, Allah is ever Aware of what you do.

بَلۡ ظَنَنۡتُمۡ اَنۡ لَّنۡ یَّنۡقَلِبَ الرَّسُوۡلُ وَ الۡمُؤۡمِنُوۡنَ اِلٰۤی اَہۡلِیۡہِمۡ اَبَدًا وَّ زُیِّنَ ذٰلِکَ فِیۡ قُلُوۡبِکُمۡ وَ ظَنَنۡتُمۡ ظَنَّ السَّوۡءِ ۚۖ وَ کُنۡتُمۡ قَوۡمًۢا بُوۡرًا ﴿۱۲﴾

48:12 No, you thought that the Messenger and the believers would never return to their families, and that was made pleasing in your hearts, and you thought an evil thought, and you are a people doomed to perish.1

وَ مَنۡ لَّمۡ یُؤۡمِنۡۢ بِاللّٰہِ وَ رَسُوۡلِہٖ فَاِنَّاۤ اَعۡتَدۡنَا لِلۡکٰفِرِیۡنَ سَعِیۡرًا ﴿۱۳﴾

48:13 And whoever does not believe in Allah and His Messenger — then surely We have prepared burning Fire for the disbelievers.

وَ لِلّٰہِ مُلۡکُ السَّمٰوٰتِ وَ الۡاَرۡضِ ؕ یَغۡفِرُ لِمَنۡ یَّشَآءُ وَ یُعَذِّبُ مَنۡ یَّشَآءُ ؕ وَ کَانَ اللّٰہُ غَفُوۡرًا رَّحِیۡمًا ﴿۱۴﴾

48:14 And Allah’s is the kingdom of the heavens and the earth. He forgives whom He pleases and punishes whom He pleases. And Allah is ever Forgiving, Merciful.

سَیَقُوۡلُ الۡمُخَلَّفُوۡنَ اِذَا انۡطَلَقۡتُمۡ اِلٰی مَغَانِمَ لِتَاۡخُذُوۡہَا ذَرُوۡنَا نَتَّبِعۡکُمۡ ۚ یُرِیۡدُوۡنَ اَنۡ یُّبَدِّلُوۡا کَلٰمَ اللّٰہِ ؕ قُلۡ لَّنۡ تَتَّبِعُوۡنَا کَذٰلِکُمۡ قَالَ اللّٰہُ مِنۡ قَبۡلُ ۚ فَسَیَقُوۡلُوۡنَ بَلۡ تَحۡسُدُوۡنَنَا ؕ بَلۡ کَانُوۡا لَا یَفۡقَہُوۡنَ اِلَّا قَلِیۡلًا ﴿۱۵﴾

48:15 Those who lagged behind will say, when you set forth to acquire gains: Allow us to follow you. They desire to change the word of Allah. Say: You shall not follow us. Thus did Allah say before. But they will say: Indeed, you are jealous of us. No, they do not understand but a little.

قُلۡ لِّلۡمُخَلَّفِیۡنَ مِنَ الۡاَعۡرَابِ سَتُدۡعَوۡنَ اِلٰی قَوۡمٍ اُولِیۡ بَاۡسٍ شَدِیۡدٍ تُقَاتِلُوۡنَہُمۡ اَوۡ یُسۡلِمُوۡنَ ۚ فَاِنۡ تُطِیۡعُوۡا یُؤۡتِکُمُ اللّٰہُ اَجۡرًا حَسَنًا ۚ وَ اِنۡ تَتَوَلَّوۡا کَمَا تَوَلَّیۡتُمۡ مِّنۡ قَبۡلُ یُعَذِّبۡکُمۡ عَذَابًا اَلِیۡمًا ﴿۱۶﴾

48:16 Say to those of the dwellers of the desert who lagged behind: You will soon be called against a people of mighty prowess to fight against them until they submit. Then if you obey, Allah will grant you a good reward; but, if you turn back as you turned back before, He will punish you with a painful punishment.2

لَیۡسَ عَلَی الۡاَعۡمٰی حَرَجٌ وَّ لَا عَلَی الۡاَعۡرَجِ حَرَجٌ وَّ لَا عَلَی الۡمَرِیۡضِ حَرَجٌ ؕ وَ مَنۡ یُّطِعِ اللّٰہَ وَ رَسُوۡلَہٗ یُدۡخِلۡہُ جَنّٰتٍ تَجۡرِیۡ مِنۡ تَحۡتِہَا الۡاَنۡہٰرُ ۚ وَ مَنۡ یَّتَوَلَّ یُعَذِّبۡہُ عَذَابًا اَلِیۡمًا ﴿٪۱۷﴾

48:17 There is no blame on the blind, nor is there blame on the lame, nor is there blame on the sick. And whoever obeys Allah and His Messenger, He will make him enter Gardens in which rivers flow. And whoever turns back, He will punish him with a painful punishment.


  1. Even as late as 6 A.H. Muslims were so weak, as compared with their enemies, that whenever they had to go into the field, the weak-hearted thought that the Muslims were going into the very jaws of death.
  2. The power of the Makkan enemy was now broken, as was proved by the advance on Makkah two years later. Hence, the defaulters are told that they would be called on to join the forces of Islam against another powerful enemy. This appears to be a reference to the wars against the Roman and Persian empires in the time of the early Caliphs, again referred to in v. 21.