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 7 (Verses 7:54–7:58): The Righteous will Prosper

Translation:

اِنَّ رَبَّکُمُ اللّٰہُ الَّذِیۡ خَلَقَ السَّمٰوٰتِ وَ الۡاَرۡضَ فِیۡ سِتَّۃِ اَیَّامٍ ثُمَّ اسۡتَوٰی عَلَی الۡعَرۡشِ ۟ یُغۡشِی الَّیۡلَ النَّہَارَ یَطۡلُبُہٗ حَثِیۡثًا ۙ وَّ الشَّمۡسَ وَ الۡقَمَرَ وَ النُّجُوۡمَ مُسَخَّرٰتٍۭ بِاَمۡرِہٖ ؕ اَلَا لَہُ الۡخَلۡقُ وَ الۡاَمۡرُ ؕ تَبٰرَکَ اللّٰہُ رَبُّ الۡعٰلَمِیۡنَ ﴿۵۴﴾

7:54 Surely your Lord is Allah, Who created the heavens and the earth in six periods,1 and He is established on the Throne of Power.2 He makes the night cover the day, which it pursues incessantly. And (He created) the sun and the moon and the stars, made subservient by His command. Surely His is the creation and the command. Blessed is Allah, the Lord of the worlds!3

اُدۡعُوۡا رَبَّکُمۡ تَضَرُّعًا وَّ خُفۡیَۃً ؕ اِنَّہٗ لَا یُحِبُّ الۡمُعۡتَدِیۡنَ ﴿ۚ۵۵﴾

7:55 Call on your Lord humbly and in secret. Surely He does not love the transgressors.

وَ لَا تُفۡسِدُوۡا فِی الۡاَرۡضِ بَعۡدَ اِصۡلَاحِہَا وَ ادۡعُوۡہُ خَوۡفًا وَّ طَمَعًا ؕ اِنَّ رَحۡمَتَ اللّٰہِ قَرِیۡبٌ مِّنَ الۡمُحۡسِنِیۡنَ ﴿۵۶﴾

7:56 And do not make mischief in the earth after its reformation, and call on Him, fearing and hoping. Surely the mercy of Allah is near to the doers of good.4

وَ ہُوَ الَّذِیۡ یُرۡسِلُ الرِّیٰحَ بُشۡرًۢا بَیۡنَ یَدَیۡ رَحۡمَتِہٖ ؕ حَتّٰۤی اِذَاۤ اَقَلَّتۡ سَحَابًا ثِقَالًا سُقۡنٰہُ لِبَلَدٍ مَّیِّتٍ فَاَنۡزَلۡنَا بِہِ الۡمَآءَ فَاَخۡرَجۡنَا بِہٖ مِنۡ کُلِّ الثَّمَرٰتِ ؕ کَذٰلِکَ نُخۡرِجُ الۡمَوۡتٰی لَعَلَّکُمۡ تَذَکَّرُوۡنَ ﴿۵۷﴾

7:57 And He it is Who sends forth the winds bearing good news before His mercy;5 till, when they bear a laden cloud, We drive it to a dead land, then We send down water on it, then bring forth thereby fruits of all kinds. Thus do We bring forth the dead that you may be mindful.6

وَ الۡبَلَدُ الطَّیِّبُ یَخۡرُجُ نَبَاتُہٗ بِاِذۡنِ رَبِّہٖ ۚ وَ الَّذِیۡ خَبُثَ لَا یَخۡرُجُ اِلَّا نَکِدًا ؕ کَذٰلِکَ نُصَرِّفُ الۡاٰیٰتِ لِقَوۡمٍ یَّشۡکُرُوۡنَ ﴿٪۵۸﴾

7:58 And the good land — its vegetation comes forth (abundantly) by the permission of its Lord. And that which is inferior — (its vegetation) comes forth but scantily. Thus do We repeat the messages for a people who give thanks.7

Commentary:

  1. The word yaum means not only day but also a period, whatever period it may be. The six periods of time in which the heavens and the earth are created refer in fact to the six stages in which they have grown to their present condition. In the case of the earth these six stages are detailed in 41:9–10.
  2. The true significance of the word ‘arsh is power or control of the creation. It is not a physical throne for sitting on. The phrase “He is established on the Throne of Power (‘arsh)” is used in the Quran here and on six other occa­sions, viz., in 10:3, 13:2, 20:5, 25:59, 32:4 and 57:4. It is invariably used after mentioning the creation of the heavens and the earth and in relation to the Divine control of His creation and the law and order to which the universe is made to submit by its great Author, as shown by the words that follow here, His is the creation and the command. The meaning is that after creating the universe, God has not left it to run its course independently of Him, but He it is Whose command holds sway and Who regulates the affairs as He has planned them.
  3. In the words Rabb al-‘ālamīn (“Lord of the worlds”) there is also a deeper reference to the spiritual evolution of man which is being worked out under the Divine plan, and the ‘arsh is mentioned specially in this connection, as man’s perfection does not consist in the working of the material laws which prevail in the universe but in the spiritual laws which are needed for his per­fection. In 40:15 the Lord of the ‘arsh is clearly stated to be the Sender of revela­tion to man to bring about his spiritual perfection. In 40:7 it is added: “Those who bear the ‘arsh and those around it celebrate the praise of their Lord and believe in Him and ask protection for those who believe”. The bearers of the ‘arsh or the Throne of Power are, in fact, the bearers of the Divine message.
  4. The feeling which should be entertained towards Allah should be a combination of fear and hope, of awe as well as love, because the fear of His dis­pleasure ennobles the mind no less than the hope of His mercy.
  5. His mercy represents the rain in the physical world.
  6. The bringing forth of the spiritually dead to life through the revela­tion of the Quran is always likened to the bringing of the dead earth to life by rain. The wind bearing the good news was the movement towards Islam, which was daily becoming more and more powerful.
  7. Revelation is here likened to the rain and the good or bad nature of man to good or inferior land. If some people do not benefit by the revelation, it is just as some lands do not benefit by rain.

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