English Translation and Commentary of the Holy Quran (2010)

by Maulana Muhammad Ali

Chapter 7: Al-Araf — The Elevated Places (Revealed at Makkah: 24 sections, 206 verses)

Section 19 (Verses 7:152–7:157): The Torah and the Prophet’s Advent


اِنَّ الَّذِیۡنَ اتَّخَذُوا الۡعِجۡلَ سَیَنَالُہُمۡ غَضَبٌ مِّنۡ رَّبِّہِمۡ وَ ذِلَّۃٌ فِی الۡحَیٰوۃِ الدُّنۡیَا ؕ وَ کَذٰلِکَ نَجۡزِی الۡمُفۡتَرِیۡنَ ﴿۱۵۲﴾

7:152 Those who took the calf (for a god) — wrath from their Lord, and disgrace in this world’s life, will surely come upon them. And thus do We recompense those who invent lies.

وَ الَّذِیۡنَ عَمِلُوا السَّیِّاٰتِ ثُمَّ تَابُوۡا مِنۡۢ بَعۡدِہَا وَ اٰمَنُوۡۤا ۫ اِنَّ رَبَّکَ مِنۡۢ بَعۡدِہَا لَغَفُوۡرٌ رَّحِیۡمٌ ﴿۱۵۳﴾

7:153 And those who do evil deeds, then repent after that and believe — your Lord after that is surely Forgiving, Merciful.

وَ لَمَّا سَکَتَ عَنۡ مُّوۡسَی الۡغَضَبُ اَخَذَ الۡاَلۡوَاحَ ۚۖ وَ فِیۡ نُسۡخَتِہَا ہُدًی وَّ رَحۡمَۃٌ لِّلَّذِیۡنَ ہُمۡ لِرَبِّہِمۡ یَرۡہَبُوۡنَ ﴿۱۵۴﴾

7:154 And when Moses’ anger calmed down, he took up the tablets; and in the writing thereof was guidance and mercy for those who fear their Lord.

وَ اخۡتَارَ مُوۡسٰی قَوۡمَہٗ سَبۡعِیۡنَ رَجُلًا لِّمِیۡقَاتِنَا ۚ فَلَمَّاۤ اَخَذَتۡہُمُ الرَّجۡفَۃُ قَالَ رَبِّ لَوۡ شِئۡتَ اَہۡلَکۡتَہُمۡ مِّنۡ قَبۡلُ وَ اِیَّایَ ؕ اَتُہۡلِکُنَا بِمَا فَعَلَ السُّفَہَآءُ مِنَّا ۚ اِنۡ ہِیَ اِلَّا فِتۡنَتُکَ ؕ تُضِلُّ بِہَا مَنۡ تَشَآءُ وَ تَہۡدِیۡ مَنۡ تَشَآءُ ؕ اَنۡتَ وَلِیُّنَا فَاغۡفِرۡ لَنَا وَ ارۡحَمۡنَا وَ اَنۡتَ خَیۡرُ الۡغٰفِرِیۡنَ ﴿۱۵۵﴾

7:155 And Moses chose of his people seventy men for Our appointment.1 So when the earthquake struck them, he said: My Lord, if You had pleased, You would have destroyed them before and myself (too). Will You destroy us for what the foolish among us have done? It is only Your trial. You cause to perish by it whom You please and guide whom You please. You are our Pro-tector, so forgive us and have mercy on us, and You are the Best of those who forgive.

وَ اکۡتُبۡ لَنَا فِیۡ ہٰذِہِ الدُّنۡیَا حَسَنَۃً وَّ فِی الۡاٰخِرَۃِ اِنَّا ہُدۡنَاۤ اِلَیۡکَ ؕ قَالَ عَذَابِیۡۤ اُصِیۡبُ بِہٖ مَنۡ اَشَآءُ ۚ وَ رَحۡمَتِیۡ وَسِعَتۡ کُلَّ شَیۡءٍ ؕ فَسَاَکۡتُبُہَا لِلَّذِیۡنَ یَتَّقُوۡنَ وَ یُؤۡتُوۡنَ الزَّکٰوۃَ وَ الَّذِیۡنَ ہُمۡ بِاٰیٰتِنَا یُؤۡمِنُوۡنَ ﴿۱۵۶﴾ۚ

7:156 And ordain for us good in this world’s life and in the Hereafter, for surely we turn to You. He said: I afflict with My punishment whom I please, and My mercy encompasses all things.2 So I ordain it for those who keep their duty and give the due charity, and those who believe in Our messages —

اَلَّذِیۡنَ یَتَّبِعُوۡنَ الرَّسُوۡلَ النَّبِیَّ الۡاُمِّیَّ الَّذِیۡ یَجِدُوۡنَہٗ مَکۡتُوۡبًا عِنۡدَہُمۡ فِی التَّوۡرٰىۃِ وَ الۡاِنۡجِیۡلِ ۫ یَاۡمُرُہُمۡ بِالۡمَعۡرُوۡفِ وَ یَنۡہٰہُمۡ عَنِ الۡمُنۡکَرِ وَ یُحِلُّ لَہُمُ الطَّیِّبٰتِ وَ یُحَرِّمُ عَلَیۡہِمُ الۡخَبٰٓئِثَ وَ یَضَعُ عَنۡہُمۡ اِصۡرَہُمۡ وَ الۡاَغۡلٰلَ الَّتِیۡ کَانَتۡ عَلَیۡہِمۡ ؕ فَالَّذِیۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡا بِہٖ وَ عَزَّرُوۡہُ وَ نَصَرُوۡہُ وَ اتَّبَعُوا النُّوۡرَ الَّذِیۡۤ اُنۡزِلَ مَعَہٗۤ ۙ اُولٰٓئِکَ ہُمُ الۡمُفۡلِحُوۡنَ ﴿۱۵۷﴾٪

7:157 those who follow the Messenger-Prophet, the Ummī,3 whom they find mentioned in the Torah and the Gospel.4 He enjoins them good and forbids them evil, and makes lawful to them the good things and prohibits for them impure things, and removes from them their burden and the shackles which were on them. So those who believe in him and honour him and help him, and follow the light which has been sent down with him — these are the successful.


  1. Exodus 24:1 speaks of Moses having taken up seventy elders of Israel along with him, though they were forbidden to “come near the Lord”, and on this occasion Moses was in the mountain forty days and forty nights (Exodus, 24:18). Although the Bible also speaks of Moses as going to the mountain for forty days and forty nights after the incident of the calf-worship (Exodus, 34:28), the Quran refers only to the first occasion.
  2. No attribute of God receives such prominence in the Quran as the attribute of mercy — My mercy encompasses all things. Even punishment is a phase of Divine mercy because it seeks to correct the evil-doers.
  3. Ummī means one who neither writes nor reads a writing. Hence the Arabs are called an ummī people, and the Ummī Prophet is either the prophet of the ummī people (i.e. the Arabs) because he was like them, or he was so called because he himself did not know reading and writing. But according to some, the prophet is called Ummī because he came from the Umm al-Qurā, i.e. Makkah, which is the Metropolis of Arabia.
  4. There are many prophecies regarding the advent of the Holy Pro­phet in the Bible. The Torah and the Gospel are specially mentioned here because Moses and Jesus were respectively the first and the last of the Israelite prophets. Deuteronomy 18:15–18 speaks very clearly of the raising of a prophet, who shall be the like of Moses, from among the brethren of the Israelites, i.e. the Ishmaelites or the Arabs, while Deuteronomy 33:2 speaks of the shining forth of the mani­fes­tation of the Lord, i.e. his coming in full glory “from Mount Paran”. The Gospel is full of prophecies of the advent of the Holy Prophet; Matthew 21:33–44, Mark 12:1–11, Luke 20:9–18, where the Lord of the vineyard comes after the son (i.e. Jesus) is maltreated, and Matthew 13:31–32, John 1:21, John 14:16, John 14:26 all contain such prophecies.