English Translation and Commentary of the Holy Quran (2010)

by Maulana Muhammad Ali

Chapter 58: Al-Mujadilah — The Pleading Woman (Revealed at Madinah: 3 sections, 22 verses)

Section 2 (Verses 58:7–58:13): Secret Counsels Condemned


اَلَمۡ تَرَ اَنَّ اللّٰہَ یَعۡلَمُ مَا فِی السَّمٰوٰتِ وَ مَا فِی الۡاَرۡضِ ؕ مَا یَکُوۡنُ مِنۡ نَّجۡوٰی ثَلٰثَۃٍ اِلَّا ہُوَ رَابِعُہُمۡ وَ لَا خَمۡسَۃٍ اِلَّا ہُوَ سَادِسُہُمۡ وَ لَاۤ اَدۡنٰی مِنۡ ذٰلِکَ وَ لَاۤ اَکۡثَرَ اِلَّا ہُوَ مَعَہُمۡ اَیۡنَ مَا کَانُوۡا ۚ ثُمَّ یُنَبِّئُہُمۡ بِمَا عَمِلُوۡا یَوۡمَ الۡقِیٰمَۃِ ؕ اِنَّ اللّٰہَ بِکُلِّ شَیۡءٍ عَلِیۡمٌ ﴿۷﴾

58:7 Do you not see that Allah knows whatever is in the heavens and whatever is in the earth? There is no secret counsel between three but He is the fourth of them, nor between five but He is the sixth of them, nor between less than that nor more but He is with them wherever they are; then He will inform them of what they did on the day of Resurrection. Surely Allah is Knower of all things.1

اَلَمۡ تَرَ اِلَی الَّذِیۡنَ نُہُوۡا عَنِ النَّجۡوٰی ثُمَّ یَعُوۡدُوۡنَ لِمَا نُہُوۡا عَنۡہُ وَ یَتَنٰجَوۡنَ بِالۡاِثۡمِ وَ الۡعُدۡوَانِ وَ مَعۡصِیَتِ الرَّسُوۡلِ ۫ وَ اِذَا جَآءُوۡکَ حَیَّوۡکَ بِمَا لَمۡ یُحَیِّکَ بِہِ اللّٰہُ ۙ وَ یَقُوۡلُوۡنَ فِیۡۤ اَنۡفُسِہِمۡ لَوۡ لَا یُعَذِّبُنَا اللّٰہُ بِمَا نَقُوۡلُ ؕ حَسۡبُہُمۡ جَہَنَّمُ ۚ یَصۡلَوۡنَہَا ۚ فَبِئۡسَ الۡمَصِیۡرُ ﴿۸﴾

58:8 Do you not see those who are forbidden secret counsels, then they return to what they are forbidden, and hold secret counsels for sin and revolt and disobedience to the Messenger. And when they come to you they greet you with a greeting with which Allah does not greet you,2 and say within themselves: Why does not Allah punish us for what we say? Hell is enough for them, they will burn in it, and evil is the destination!

یٰۤاَیُّہَا الَّذِیۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡۤا اِذَا تَنَاجَیۡتُمۡ فَلَا تَتَنَاجَوۡا بِالۡاِثۡمِ وَ الۡعُدۡوَانِ وَ مَعۡصِیَتِ الرَّسُوۡلِ وَ تَنَاجَوۡا بِالۡبِرِّ وَ التَّقۡوٰی ؕ وَ اتَّقُوا اللّٰہَ الَّذِیۡۤ اِلَیۡہِ تُحۡشَرُوۡنَ ﴿۹﴾

58:9 O you who believe, when you confer together in private, do not give to each other counsel of sin and revolt and disobedience to the Messenger, but give to each other counsel of goodness and observance of duty.3 And keep your duty to Allah, to Whom you will be gathered together.

اِنَّمَا النَّجۡوٰی مِنَ الشَّیۡطٰنِ لِیَحۡزُنَ الَّذِیۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡا وَ لَیۡسَ بِضَآرِّہِمۡ شَیۡئًا اِلَّا بِاِذۡنِ اللّٰہِ ؕ وَ عَلَی اللّٰہِ فَلۡیَتَوَکَّلِ الۡمُؤۡمِنُوۡنَ ﴿۱۰﴾

58:10 Secret counsels are only of the devil that he may cause to grieve those who believe, and he cannot hurt them at all except with Allah’s permission. And on Allah let the believers rely.4

یٰۤاَیُّہَا الَّذِیۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡۤا اِذَا قِیۡلَ لَکُمۡ تَفَسَّحُوۡا فِی الۡمَجٰلِسِ فَافۡسَحُوۡا یَفۡسَحِ اللّٰہُ لَکُمۡ ۚ وَ اِذَا قِیۡلَ انۡشُزُوۡا فَانۡشُزُوۡا یَرۡفَعِ اللّٰہُ الَّذِیۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡا مِنۡکُمۡ ۙ وَ الَّذِیۡنَ اُوۡتُوا الۡعِلۡمَ دَرَجٰتٍ ؕ وَ اللّٰہُ بِمَا تَعۡمَلُوۡنَ خَبِیۡرٌ ﴿۱۱﴾

58:11 O you who believe, when it is said to you, Make room in assemblies, make room. Allah will give you ample (room). And when it is said, Rise up, rise up.5 Allah will exalt those of you who believe, and those who are given knowledge, to high ranks. And Allah is Aware of what you do.

یٰۤاَیُّہَا الَّذِیۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡۤا اِذَا نَاجَیۡتُمُ الرَّسُوۡلَ فَقَدِّمُوۡا بَیۡنَ یَدَیۡ نَجۡوٰىکُمۡ صَدَقَۃً ؕ ذٰلِکَ خَیۡرٌ لَّکُمۡ وَ اَطۡہَرُ ؕ فَاِنۡ لَّمۡ تَجِدُوۡا فَاِنَّ اللّٰہَ غَفُوۡرٌ رَّحِیۡمٌ ﴿۱۲﴾

58:12 O you who believe, when you consult the Messenger, offer something in charity before your consultation. That is better for you and purer. But if you do not have (the means), then surely Allah is Forgiving, Merciful.

ءَاَشۡفَقۡتُمۡ اَنۡ تُقَدِّمُوۡا بَیۡنَ یَدَیۡ نَجۡوٰىکُمۡ صَدَقٰتٍ ؕ فَاِذۡ لَمۡ تَفۡعَلُوۡا وَ تَابَ اللّٰہُ عَلَیۡکُمۡ فَاَقِیۡمُوا الصَّلٰوۃَ وَ اٰتُوا الزَّکٰوۃَ وَ اَطِیۡعُوا اللّٰہَ وَ رَسُوۡلَہٗ ؕ وَ اللّٰہُ خَبِیۡرٌۢ بِمَا تَعۡمَلُوۡنَ ﴿٪۱۳﴾

58:13 Do you fear that you will not (be able to) give in charity before your consultation? So when you do not do it, and Allah has turned to you (mercifully), keep up prayer and give the due (obligatory) charity and obey Allah and His Messenger. And Allah is Aware of what you do.


  1. The hypocrites and the Jews conspired with the enemies of Islam to destroy the Muslim community of Madinah. There is a brief reference to their plots in 4:114: “There is no good in most of their secret counsels”. Such plots are mentioned in greater detail here, and they are told that these secret plots are known to Allah, and they cannot succeed in bringing harm to Islam.
  2. The meaning is that they invoke death and destruction for you (i.e. for the Prophet), while Allah wishes that you should live and prosper.
  3. Secret counsels and secret societies are condemned, but private counsels to promote the cause of goodness and service of humanity are quite different from the subversive activities of secret societies.
  4. Secret societies denounced in the above verses would not be able to achieve their mischievous object against Islam.
  5. The progress of Islam brought large numbers of people into its fold who stood in need of being taught manners as well as morals. In their assemblies they crowded and pressed upon each other in order to be able to sit nearest to the Prophet. The injunction to make room in assemblies means, either that room should be made for others, or that the people should not sit too close to each other.