Forbidden to you are your mothers, and your daughters, and your sisters, and your aunts paternal and maternal, and a brother's daughters, and a sister's daughters; and your milk-mothers, and your milk-sisters; and the mothers of your wives; and your step-daughters - who are your foster children - born of your wives with whom you have consummated your marriage; but if you have not consummated your marriage, you will incur no sin [by marrying their daughters]; and [forbidden to you are] the spouses of the sons who have sprung from your loins; and [you are forbidden] to have two sisters [as your wives] at one and the same time - but what is past is past:* for, behold, God is indeed much-forgiving, a dispenser of grace.
And how many a prophet has had to fight [in God's cause], followed by many God-devoted men: and they did not become faint of heart for all that they had to suffer in God's cause, and neither did they weaken, nor did they abase themselves [before the enemy], since God loves those who are patient in adversity;
It is not conceivable that a human being unto whom God had granted revelation, and sound judgment, and prophethood, should thereafter have said unto people,* "Worship me beside God"; but rather [did he exhort them], "Become men of God* by spreading the knowledge of the divine writ, and by your own deep study [thereof]."
Verily, it is We who bestowed from on high the Torah, wherein there was guidance and light. On `its strength did the prophets, who had surrendered themselves unto God, deliver judgment unto those who followed the Jewish faith;* and so did the [early] men of God and the rabbis, inasmuch as some of God's writ had been entrusted to their care;* and they [all] bore witness to its truth. Therefore, [O children of Israel,] hold not men in awe, but stand in awe of Me; and do not barter away My messages for a trifling gain:* for they who do not judge in accordance with what God has bestowed from on high are, indeed, deniers of the truth!
Why do not their men of God and their rabbis* forbid them to make sinful assertions and to swallow all that is evil? Vile indeed is what they contrive!
All praise is due to God alone, the Sustainer of all the worlds,*
It is they who follow the guidance [which comes from their Sustainer; and it is they, they who' shall attain to a happy state!
O MANKIND! Worship your Sustainer, who has created you and those who lived before you, so that you might remain conscious of Him
Behold, God does not disdain to propound a parable of a gnat, or of something [even] less than that.* Now, as for those who have attained to faith, they know that it is the truth from their Sustainer - whereas those who are bent on denying the truth say, "What could God mean by this parable?" In this way does He cause many a one to go astray, just as He guides many a one aright: but none does He cause thereby to go astray save the iniquitous,
AND LO!* Thy Sustainer said unto the angels: "Behold, I am about to establish upon earth one who shall inherit it."* They said: "Wilt Thou place on it such as will spread corruption thereon and shed blood -whereas it is we who extol Thy limitless glory, and praise Thee, and hallow Thy name?" [God] answered: "Verily, I know that which you do not know."
Thereupon Adam received words [of guidance] from his Sustainer, and He accepted his repentance: for, verily, He alone is the-Acceptor of Repentance, the Dispenser of Grace.
who know with certainty that they shall meet their Sustainer and that unto Him they shall return.
And [remember the time] when We saved you from Pharaoh's people, who afflicted you with cruel suffering, slaughtering your sons and sparing [only] your women* - which was an awesome trial from your Sustainer;
And [remember] when you said: "O Moses, indeed we cannot endure but one kind of food; pray, then, to thy Sustainer that He bring forth for us aught of what grows from the earth - of its herbs, its cucumbers, its garlic, its lentils, its onions." Said [Moses]: "Would you take a lesser thing in exchange for what is [so much] better?* Go back in shame to Egypt , and then you can have what you are asking for!"* And so, ignominy and humiliation overshadowed them, and they earned the burden of God's condemnation: all this, because they persisted in denying the truth of God's messages and in slaying the prophets against all right: all this, because they rebelled [against God], and persisted in transgressing the bounds of what is right.*
VERILY, those who have attained to faith [in this divine writ], as well as those who follow the Jewish faith, and the Christians, and the Sabians* -all who believe in God and the Last Day and do righteous deeds-shall have their reward with their Sustainer; and no fear need they have, and neither shall they grieve.*
Said they: "Pray on our behalf unto thy Sustainer that He make clear to us what she is to be like." [Moses] replied: "Behold, He says it is to be a cow neither old nor immature, but of art age in-between. Do, then, what you have been bidden!"
Said they: "Pray on our behalf unto thy Sustainer that He make clear to us what her colour should be. "[Mopes] answered: "Behold; He says it is to be a yellow cow, bright of hue, pleasing to the beholder."
Said' they: "Pray on our behalf unto thy Sustainer that He make clear to us what she is to be like, for to us all cows resemble one another; and then, if God so wills, we shall truly be guided aright!"
For, when they meet those who have attained to faith. they say, "We believe [as you believe]" - but when they find themselves alone with one another, they say. "Do you inform them of what God has disclosed to you, so that they might use it in argument against you, quoting the words of your Sustainer?* Will you not. then, use your reason?"
Neither those from among the followers of earlier revelation who are bent on denying the truth, nor those who ascribe divinity to other beings beside God, would like to see any good* ever bestowed upon you from on high by your Sustainer; but God singles out for His grace whom He wills-for God is limitless in His great bounty.
Yea, indeed: everyone who surrenders his whole being unto God,* and is a doer of good withal, shall have his reward with his Sustainer; and all such need have no fear, and neither shall they grieve.*
And [remember this:] when his Sustainer tried Abraham by [His] commandments and the latter fulfilled them,* He said: "Behold, I shall make thee a leader of men. "Abraham asked: "And [wilt Thou make leaders] of my offspring as well? "[God] answered: "My covenant does not embrace the evildoers."*
And, lo, Abraham prayed: "O my Sustainer! Make this a land secure, and grant its people fruitful sustenance - such of them as believe in God and the Last Day." [God] answered: "And whoever shall deny the truth, him will I let enjoy himself for a short while -but in the end I shall drive him to suffering through fire: and how vile a journey's end!"
And when Abraham and Ishmael were raising the foundations of the Temple , [they prayed:] "O our Sustainer! Accept Thou this from us: for, verily, Thou alone art all-hearing, all-knowing!
"O our Sustainer! Make us surrender ourselves unto Thee, and make out of our offspring* a community that shall surrender itself unto Thee, and show us our ways of worship, and accept our repentance: for, verily, Thou alone art the Acceptor of Repentance, the Dispenser of Grace!
"O our Sustainer! Raise up from the midst of our off spring* an apostle from among themselves, who shall convey unto them Thy messages, and impart unto them revelation as well as wisdom, and cause them to grow in purity: for, verily, Thou alone art almighty, truly wise!"
When his Sustainer said to him, "Surrender thyself unto Me!" - he answered, "I have surrendered myself unto [Thee,] the Sustainer of all the worlds."
Say: "We believe in God, and in that which has been bestowed from on high upon us, and that which has been bestowed upon Abraham and Ishmael and Isaac and Jacob and ,their descendants,* and that which has been vouchsafed to Moses and Jesus; and that which has been vouchsafed to all the [other] prophets by their Sustainer: we make no distinction between any of them.* And it is unto Him that we surrender ourselves."
Say [to the Jews and the Christians]: "Do you argue with us about God?* But He is our Sustainer as well as your Sustainer - and unto us shall be accounted our deeds, and unto you, your deeds; and it- is unto Him alone that we devote ourselves.
We have seen thee [O Prophet] often turn thy face towards heaven [for guidance]: and now We shall indeed make thee turn in prayer in a direction which will fulfil thy desire. Turn, then, thy face towards the Inviolable House of Worship; and wherever you all may be, turn your faces towards it [in prayer]. And, verily, those who have been vouchsafed revelation aforetime know well that this [commandment] comes in truth from their Sustainer; and God is not unaware of what they do.
the truth from thy Sustainer!* Be not, then, among the doubters:
Thus, from wherever thou mayest come forth, turn thy face [in prayer] towards the Inviolable House of Worship-for,. behold, this [commandment] comes in truth from thy Sustainer; and God is not unaware of what you do.
It is they upon whom their Sustainer's blessings and grace are bestowed, and it is they, they who are on the right path!
O YOU who have attained to faith! Just retribution is ordained for you in cases of killing: the free for the free, and the slave for the slave, and the woman for the woman.* And if something [of his guilt] is remitted to a guilty person by his brother,* this [remission] shall be adhered to with fairness, and restitution to his fellow-man shall be made in a goodly manner.* This is an alleviation from your Sustainer, and an act of His grace. And for him who, none the less,* wilfully transgresses the bounds of what is right, there is grievous suffering in store:
[However,] you will be committing no sin if [during the pilgrimage] you seek to obtain any bounty from your Sustainer.* And when you surge downward in multitudes from `Arafat,* remember God at the holy place, and remember Him as the One who guided you after you had indeed been lost on your way;*
And when you have performed your acts of worship, [continue to] bear God in mind as you would bear your own fathers in mind-nay, with a yet keener remembrance!* For there are people who [merely] pray, "O our Sustainer! Give us in this world" -and such shall not partake in the blessings of the life to come.
But there are among them such as pray, "O our Sustainer! Grant us good in this world and good in the life to come, and keep us safe from suffering through the fire":
And their prophet said unto them: "Behold, it shall be a sign of his [rightful] dominion that you will be granted a heart* endowed by your Sustainer with inner peace and with all that is enduring in the angel-borne heritage left behind by the House of Moses and the House of Aaron.* Herein, behold, there shall indeed be a sign for you if you are [truly] believers."
And when they came face to face with Goliath and his forces, they prayed: "O our Sustainer! Shower us with patience in adversity, and make firm our steps, and succour us against the people who deny the truth!"
ART THOU NOT aware of that [king] who argued with Abraham about his Sustainer, (simply] because God had granted him kingship? Lo! Abraham said: "My Sustainer is He who grants life and deals death." [The king] replied: "I [too] grant life and deal death!" Said Abraham: "Verily, God causes the sun to rise in the east; cause it, then, to rise in the west!" Thereupon he who was bent on denying the truth remained dumbfounded: for God does not guide people who [deliberately] do wrong.*
And, lo, Abraham said: "O my Sustainer! Show me how Thou givest life unto the dead!" Said He: "Hast thou, then, no faith?" (Abraham) answered: "Yea, but [let me see it] so that my heart may be set fully at rest." Said He: "Take, then, four birds and teach them to obey thee;* . then place them separately on every hill [around thee]; then summon them: they will come flying to thee. And know that God is almighty, wise."*
They who spend their possessions for the sake of God and do not thereafter mar* their spending by stressing their own benevolence and hurting [the feelings of the needy] shall have their reward with 'their Sustainer, and no fear need they have, and neither shall they grieve.
Those who spend their possessions [for the sake of God] by night and by day, secretly and openly, shall have their reward with their Sustainer; and no fear need they have, and neither shall they grieve.
THOSE who gorge themselves on usury* behave but as he might behave whom Satan has confounded with his touch; for they say, "Buying and selling is but a kind of* usury" - the while God has made buying and selling lawful and usury unlawful. Hence, whoever becomes aware of his Sustainer's admonition,* and thereupon desists [from usury], may keep his past gains, and it will be for God to judge him; but as for those who return to it -they are destined for the fire, therein to abide!
Verily, those who have attained to faith and do good works, and are constant in prayer, and dispense charity - they shall have their reward with their Sustainer, and no fear need they have, and neither shall they grieve.
O YOU who have attained to faith! Whenever you give or take credit* for a stated term, set it down in writing. And let a scribe write it down equitably between you; and no scribe shall refuse to write as God has taught him:* thus shall he write. And let him who contracts the debt dictate; and let him be conscious of God, his Sustainer, and not weaken anything of his undertaking.* And if he who contracts the debt is weak of mind or body, or, is not able to dictate himself,* then let him who watches over his interests dictate equitably. And call upon two of your men to act as witnesses; and if two men are not available, then a man and two women from among such as are acceptable to you as witnesses, so that if one of them should make a mistake, the other could remind her.* And the witnesses must not refuse [to give evidence] whenever they are called upon. And be not loath to write down every contractual provision,* be it small or great, together with the time at which it falls due; this is more equitable in the sight of God, more reliable as evidence, and more likely to prevent you from having doubts [later]. If, however, [the transaction] concerns ready merchandise which you transfer directly unto one another, you will incur no sin if you do not write it down. And have witnesses whenever you trade with one another, but neither scribe nor witness must suffer harm;* for if you do [them harm], behold, it will be sinful conduct on your part. And remain conscious of God, since it is God who teaches you [herewith] - and God has full knowledge of everything.
And if you are on a journey and cannot find a scribe, pledges [may be taken] in hand: but if you trust one another, then let him who is trusted fulfil his trust, and let him be conscious of God, his Sustainer. And do not conceal what you have witnessed* - for, verily, he who conceals it is sinful at heart; and God has full knowledge of all that you do.
THE APOSTLE, and the believers with him, believe in what has been bestowed upon him from on high by his Sustainer: they all believe in God, and His angels, and His revelations, and His apostles, making no distinction between any of His apostles;* and they say: We have heard, and we pay heed. Grant us Thy forgiveness, O our Sustainer, for with Thee is all journeys' end!
God does not burden any human being with more than he is well able to bear: in his favour shall be whatever good he does, and against him whatever evil he does. O our Sustainer! Take us not to task if we forget or unwittingly do wrong! "O our Sustainer! Lay not upon us a burden such as Thou didst lay upon those who lived before us!* O our Sustainer! Make us not bear burdens which we have no strength to bear! "And efface Thou our sins, and grant us forgiveness, and bestow Thy mercy upon us! Thou art our Lord Supreme: succour us, then, against people who deny the truth!"
He it is who has bestowed upon thee from on high this divine writ, containing messages that are clear in and by themselves - and these are the essence of the divine writ - as well as others that are allegorical.* Now those whose hearts are given to swerving from the truth go after that part of the divine writ* which has been expressed in allegory, seeking out [what is bound to create] confusion,* and seeking [to arrive at] its final meaning [in an arbitrary manner]; but none save God knows its final meaning.* Hence, those who are deeply rooted in knowledge say: "We believe in it; the whole [of the divine writ] is from our Sustainer - albeit none takes this to heart save those who are endowed with insight.
"O our Sustainer! Let not our hearts swerve from the truth after Thou hast guided us; and bestow upon us the gift of Thy grace: verily, Thou art the [true] Giver of Gifts.
"O our Sustainer! Verily, Thou wilt gather mankind together to witness the Day about [the coming of] which there is no doubt: verily, God never fails to fulfil His promise."
Say: "Shall I tell you of better things than those [earthly joys]? For the God-conscious there are, with their Sustainer, gardens through which running waters flow, therein to abide, and spouses pure, and God's goodly acceptance." And God sees all that is in [the hearts of] His servants -
those who say, "O our Sustainer! Behold, we believe [in Thee]; forgive us, then, our sins, and keep us safe from suffering through the fire" - :
when a woman of [the House of] `Imran prayed: "O my Sustainer! Behold, unto Thee do I vow [the child] that is in, my womb, to be devoted to Thy service. Accept it, then, from me: verily, Thou alone art all-hearing, all-knowing!"
But when she had given birth to the child,* she said: "O my Sustainer! Behold, I have given birth to a female" - the while God had been fully aware of what she would give birth to, and [fully aware] that no male child [she might have hoped for] could ever have been like this female* - "and I have named her Mary. And, verily, I seek Thy protection for her and her offspring against Satan, the accursed."
And thereupon her Sustainer accepted the girl-child with goodly acceptance, and caused her to grow up in goodly growth, and placed her in the care of Zachariah.* Whenever Zachariah visited her in the sanctuary, he found her provided with food. He would ask: "O Mary, whence came this unto thee?" She would answer: "It is from God; behold, God grants sustenance unto whom He wills, beyond all reckoning."*
In that self-same place, Zachariah prayed unto his Sustainer, saying: "O my Sustainer! Bestow upon me [too], out of Thy grace, the gift of goodly offspring; for Thou, indeed, hearest all prayer."
[Zachariah] exclaimed: "O my Sustainer! How can I have a son when old age has already overtaken me, and my wife is barren?" Answered [the angel]: "Thus it is: God does what He wills."
[Zachariah] prayed: "O my Sustainer! Appoint a sign for me!" Said [the angel]: "Thy sign shall be that for three days thou wilt not speak unto men other than by gestures.* And remember thy Sustainer unceasingly, and extol His limitless glory by night and by day."
O Mary! Remain thou truly devout unto thy Sustainer, and prostrate thyself in worship, and bow down with those who bow down [before Him]."
Said she: "O my Sustainer! How can I have a son when no man has ever touched me?" [The angel] answered: "Thus it is: God creates what He wills* when He wills a thing to be, He but says unto it, 'Be' - and it is.
and [will make him] an apostle unto the children of Israel ."* "I HAVE COME unto you with a message from your Sustainer. I shall create for you out of clay, as it were, the shape of [your] destiny, and then breathe into it, so that it might become [your] destiny by God's leave;* and I shall heal the blind and the leper, and bring the dead back to life by God's leave;* and I shall let you know what you may eat and what you should store up in your houses.* Behold, in all this there is indeed a message for you, if you are [truly] believers.
"And [I have come] to confirm the truth of whatever there still remains* of the Torah, and to make lawful unto you some of the things which [aforetime] were forbidden to you. And I have come unto you with a message from your Sustainer; remain, then, conscious of God, and pay heed unto me.
"Verily, God is my Sustainer as well as your Sustainer; so worship Him [alone]: this is a straight way."
O our Sustainer! We believe in what Thou hast bestowed from on high, and we follow this Apostle; make us one,* then, with all who bear witness [to the truth]!"
[This is] the truth from thy Sustainer; be not, then, among the doubters!
Say: "O followers of earlier revelation! Come unto that tenet which we and you hold in common:* that we shall worship none but God, and that we shall not ascribe divinity to aught beside Him, and that we shall not take human beings for our lords beside God."* And if they turn away, then say: "Bear witness that it is we who have surrendered ourselves unto Him."
but do not [really] believe anyone who does not follow your own faith." Say: "Behold, all [true] guidance is God's guidance, consisting in one's being granted [revelation] such as you have been granted."* Or would they contend against you before your Sustainer? Say: "Behold, all bounty is in the hand of God; He grants it unto whom He wills:* for God is infinite, all-knowing,
And neither did he bid you to take the angels and the prophets for your lords:* [for] would he bid you to deny the truth after you have surrendered yourselves unto God?
Say: "We believe in God, and in that which has been bestowed from on high upon us, and that which has been bestowed upon Abraham and Ishmael and Isaac and Jacob and their descendants, and that which has been vouchsafed by their Sustainer unto Moses and Jesus and all the [other] prophets: we make no distinction between any of them.* And unto Him do we surrender ourselves."
[And remember] when thou didst say unto the believers: "Is it not enough for you [to know] that your Sustainer will aid you with three thousand angels sent down [from on high]?
Nay, but if you are patient in adversity and conscious of Him, and the enemy should fall upon you of a sudden, your Sustainer will aid you with five thousand angels swooping down!"*
And vie with one another to attain to your Sustainer's forgiveness and to a paradise as vast as the heavens and the earth, which has been readied for the God-conscious
These it is who shall have as their reward forgiveness from their Sustainer, and gardens through which running waters flow, therein to abide: and how excellent a reward for those who labour!
and all that they said was this: "O our Sustainer! Forgive us our sins and the lack of moderation in our doings! And make firm our steps, and succour us against people who deny the truth!" -
But do not think of those that have been slain in God's cause as dead. Nay, they are alive! With their Sustainer have they their sustenance,
[and] who remember God when they stand, and when they sit, and when they lie down to sleep,* and [thus] reflect on the creation of the heavens and the earth: "O our Sustainer! Thou hast not created [aught of] this without meaning and purpose.* Limitless art Thou in Thy glory! Keep us safe, then, from suffering through fire!
"O our Sustainer! Whomsoever Thou shalt commit to the fire, him, verily, wilt Thou have brought to disgrace [in this world];* and such evildoers will have none to succour them.
"O our Sustainer! Behold, we heard a voice* call [us] unto faith, `Believe in your Sustainer!' - and so we came to believe. O our Sustainer! Forgive us, then, our sins, and efface our bad deeds; and let us die the death of the truly virtuous!
"And, O our Sustainer, grant us that which Thou hast promised us through Thy apostles, and disgrace us not on Resurrection Day! Verily, Thou never failest to fulfil Thy promise!"
And thus does their Sustainer answer their prayer: "I shall not lose sight of the labour of any of you who labours [in My way], be it man or woman: each of you is an issue of the other.* Hence, as for those who forsake the domain of evil,* and are driven from their homelands, and suffer hurt in My cause, and fight [for it], and are slain - I shall most certainly efface their bad deeds, and shall most certainly bring them into gardens through which running waters flow, as a reward from God: for with God is the most beauteous of rewards."
whereas those who remain conscious of their Sustainer shall have gardens through which running waters flow, therein to abide: a ready welcome from God. And that which is with God is best for the truly virtuous.
And, behold, among the followers of earlier revelation there are indeed such as [truly] believe in God, and in that which has been bestowed from on high upon you as well as in that which has been bestowed upon them. Standing in awe of God, they do not barter away God's messages for a trifling gain. They shall have their reward with their Sustainer - for, behold, God is swift in reckoning!
O MANKIND! Be conscious of your Sustainer, who has created you out of one living entity, and out of it created its mate, and out of the two spread abroad a multitude of men and women.* And remain conscious of God, in whose name you demand [your rights] from one another, and of these ties of kinship. Verily, God is ever watchful over you!
But nay, by thy Sustainer! They do not [really] believe unless they make thee [O Prophet] a judge of all on which they disagree among themselves, and then find in their hearts no bar to an acceptance of thy decision and give themselves up [to it] in utter self-surrender.*
And how could you refuse to fight* in the cause of God and of the utterly helpless men and women and children who are crying, "O our Sustainer! Lead us forth [to freedom] out of this land whose people are oppressors, and raise for us, out of Thy grace, a protector, and raise for us, out of Thy grace, one who will bring us succour!"
ART THOU NOT aware of those who have been told, "Curb your hands,* and be constant in prayer, and render the purifying dues"? But as soon as fighting [in God's cause] is ordained for them, lo, some of them stand in awe of men as one should stand in awe of God - or in even greater awe - and say, "O our Sustainer! Why hast Thou ordained fighting for us? If only Thou hadst granted us a delay for a little while!" Say: "Brief is the enjoyment of this world, whereas the life to come is the best for all who are conscious of God - since none of you shall be wronged by as much as a hair's breadth.
O mankind! The Apostle has now come unto you with the truth from your Sustainer: believe, then, for your own good! And if you deny the truth - behold, unto God belongs all that is in the heavens and all that is on earth, and God is indeed all-knowing, wise!
O MANKIND! A manifestation of the truth has now come unto you from your Sustainer, and We have sent down unto you a clear light.
O you who have attained to faith! Offend not against the symbols set up by God, nor against the sacred month [of pilgrimage], nor against the garlanded offerings,* nor against those who flock to the Inviolable Temple, seeking favour with their Sustainer and His goodly acceptance; and [only] after your pilgrimage is over* are you free to hunt. And never let your hatred of people who would bar you from the Inviolable House of Worship lead you into the sin of aggression:* but rather help one another in furthering virtue and God-consciousness, and do not help one another in furthering evil and enmity; and remain conscious of God: for, behold, God is severe in retribution!
[But] they said: "O Moses! Behold, never shall we enter that [land] so long as those others are in it. Go forth, then, thou and thy Sustainer, and fight, both of you! We, behold, shall remain here!"
Prayed [Moses]: "O my Sustainer! Of none am I master but of myself and my brother [Aaron]: draw Thou, then, a dividing-line between us and these iniquitous folk!"
Even if thou lay thy hand on me to slay me, I shall not lay my hand on thee to slay thee: behold, I fear God, the Sustainer of all the worlds.
And the Jews say, "God's hand is shackled!" It is their own hands that are shackled; and rejected [by God] are they because of this their assertion.* Nay, but wide are His hands stretched out: He dispenses [bounty] as He wills. But all that has been bestowed from on high upon thee [O Prophet] by thy Sustainer is bound to make many of them yet more stubborn in their overweening arrogance and in their denial of the truth. And so We have cast enmity and hatred among the followers of the Bible ,* [to last] until Resurrection Day; every time they light the fires of war, God extinguishes them ;* and they labour hard to spread corruption on earth: and God does not -love the spreaders of corruption.
and if they would but truly observe the Torah and the Gospel and all [the revelation] that has been bestowed from on high upon them by their Sustainer, they would indeed partake of all the blessings of heaven and earth. Some of them do pursue a right course; but as for most of them -vile indeed is what they do!*
O APOSTLE! Announce all that has been bestowed from on high upon thee by thy Sustainer: for unless thou doest it fully, thou wilt not have delivered His message [at all]. And God will protect thee from [unbelieving] men: behold, God does not guide people who refuse to acknowledge the truth.
Say: "O followers of the Bible! You have no valid ground for your beliefs -unless you [truly] observe the Torah and the Gospel, and all that has been bestowed from on high upon you by your Sustainer!"* Yet all that has been bestowed from on high upon thee [O Prophet] by thy Sustainer is bound to make many of them yet more stubborn in their overweening arrogance and in their denial of the truth. But sorrow not over people who deny the truth:
Indeed, the truth deny they who say, "Behold, God is the Christ, son of Mary" - seeing that the Christ [himself] said, "O children of Israel! Worship God [alone], who is my Sustainer as well as your Sustainer."* Behold, whoever ascribes divinity to any being beside God, unto him will God deny paradise, and his goal shall be the fire: and such evildoers will have none to succour them!
For, when they come to understand what has been bestowed from on high upon this Apostle, thou canst see their eyes overflow with tears, because they recognize something of its truth;* [and] they say: "O our Sustainer! We do believe; make us one, then, with all who bear witness to the truth.
And how could we fail to believe in God and in whatever truth has come unto us, when we so fervently desire that our Sustainer count us among the righteous?"
[And,] lo, the white-garbed ones said: "O Jesus, son of Mary! Could thy Sustainer send down unto us a repast from heaven?"* [Jesus] answered: "Be conscious of God, if you are [truly] believers!"
Said Jesus, the son of Mary: "O God, our Sustainer! Send down upon us a repast from heaven: it shall be an ever-recurring feast for us - for the first and the last of us -and a sign from Thee. And provide us our sustenance, for Thou art the best of providers!"
Nothing did I tell them beyond what Thou didst bid me [to say]: `Worship God, [who is] my Sustainer as well as your Sustainer.' And I bore witness to what they did as long as I dwelt in their midst; but since Thou hast caused me to die, Thou alone hast been their keeper:* for Thou art witness unto everything.
ALL PRAISE is due to God, who has created the heavens and the earth, and brought into being deep darkness as well as light:* and yet, those who are bent on denying the truth regard other powers as their Sustainer's equals!
Yet whenever any of their Sustainer's messages comes unto them, they [who are bent on denying the truth] turn their backs upon it:*
Say: "Behold, I would dread, were I [thus] to rebel against my Sustainer, the suffering [which would befall me] on that awesome Day [of Judgment]."
Whereupon, in their utter confusion, they will only [be able to] say: "By God, our Sustainer, we did not [mean to] ascribe divinity to aught beside Him !"*
If thou couldst but see [them] when they will be made to stand before the fire and will say, "Oh, would that we were brought back [to life]: then we would not give the lie to our Sustainer's messages, but would be among the believers!"
If thou couldst but see [them] when they shall be made to stand before their Sustainer [and] He will say, "Is not this the truth?" They will answer: "Yea, indeed, by our Sustainer!" [Whereupon] He will say: "Taste, then, the suffering that comes from* your having refused to acknowledge the truth!"
And they say, "Why has no miraculous sign been bestowed on him* from on high by his Sustainer?" Say: "Behold, God has the power to bestow any sign from on high." Yet most human beings are unaware of this*
although there is no beast that walks on earth and no bird that flies on its two wings which is not [God's] creature* like yourselves: no single thing have We neglected in Our decree. And once again:* Unto their Sustainer shall they [all] be gathered.
and [in the end,] the last remnant of those folk who had been bent on evildoing was wiped out.* For all praise is due to God, the Sustainer of all the worlds.
And warn hereby those who fear lest they be gathered unto their Sustainer with none to protect them from Him or to intercede with Him, so that they might become [fully] conscious of Him.*
Hence, repulse not [any of] those who at morn and evening invoke their Sustainer, seeking His countenance.* Thou art in no wise accountable for them-just as they are in no wise accountable for thee* -and thou hast therefore no right to repulse them: for then thou wouldst be among the evildoers.*
And when those who believe in Our messages come unto thee, say: "Peace be upon you. Your Sustainer has willed upon Himself the law of grace and mercy* - so that if any of you does a bad deed out of ignorance, and thereafter repents and lives righteously, He shall be [found] much-forgiving, a dispenser of grace."
Say: "Behold, I take my stand on a clear evidence from my Sustainer-and [so] it is to Him that you are giving the lie! Not in my power is that which [in your ignorance] you so hastily demand:* judgment rests with none but God. He shall declare the truth, since it is He who is the best judge between truth and falsehood."
SAY: "Shall we invoke, instead of God, something that can neither benefit us nor harm us, and [thus] turn around on our heels after God has guided us aright? -like one whom the satans have enticed into blundering after earthly lusts, the while his companions, trying to guide him, call out unto him [from afar] ,* `Come thou to us!"' Say: "Verily, God's guidance is the only guidance: and so we have been bidden to surrender ourselves unto the Sustainer of all the worlds,
Then, when the night overshadowed him with its darkness, he beheld a star;., [and] he exclaimed, "This is my Sustainer!" -but when it went down, he said, "I love not the things that go down."
Then, when he beheld the moon rising, he said, "This is my Sustainer!"-but when it went down, he said, "Indeed, if my Sustainer guide me not. I will most certainly become one of the people who go astray!"
Then, when he beheld the sun rising, he said, "This is my Sustainer! This one is the greatest [of all]!" - but when it [too] went down, he exclaimed: "O my people! Behold, far be it from me to ascribe divinity, as you do, to aught beside God!
And his people argued with him. He said: "Do you argue with me about God, when it is He who has guided me? But I do not fear anything to which you ascribe divinity side by side with Him, [for no evil can befall me] unless my Sustainer so wills.* All things does my Sustainer embrace within His knowledge; will you not, then, keep this in mind?
And this was Our argument* which We vouchsafed unto Abraham against his people: [for] We do raise by degrees whom We will.* Verily, thy Sustainer is wise, all-knowing.
Such is God, your Sustainer: there is no deity save Him, the Creator of everything: worship, then, Him alone -for it is He who has everything in His care.
Means of insight have now come unto you from your Sustainer [through this divine writ]. Whoever, therefore, chooses to see, does so for his own good; and whoever chooses to remain blind, does so to his own hurt. And [say unto the blind of heart]: "I am not your keeper."
follow thou what has been revealed unto thee by thy Sustainer - save whom there is no deity - and turn thy back upon all who ascribe divinity to aught beside Him.
But do not revile those [beings] whom they invoke instead of God,* lest they revile God out of spite, and in ignorance: for, goodly indeed have We made their own doings appear unto every community* In time, [however,] unto their Sustainer they must return: and then He will make them [truly] understand all that they were doing.
AND THUS it is that against every prophet We have set up as enemies the evil forces from among humans as well as from among invisible beings that whisper unto one another glittering half-truths meant to delude the mind* But they could not do this unless thy Sustainer had so willed: stand, therefore, aloof from them and from all their false imagery!
[say thou:] "Am I, then, to look unto anyone but God for judgment* [as to what is right and wrong], when it is He who has bestowed upon you from on high this divine writ, clearly spelling out the truth?"* And those unto whom We have vouchsafed revelation aforetime know that this one, too, has been bestowed from on high, step by step, by thy Sustainer.* Be not, then, among the doubters-
for, truly and justly has thy Sustainer's promise been fulfilled.* There is no power that could alter [the fulfilment of] His promises: and He alone is all-hearing, all-knowing.
Verily, thy Sustainer knows best as to who strays from His path, and best knows He as to who are the right-guided.
And why should you not eat of that over which God's name has been pronounced, seeing that He has so clearly spelled out to you what He has forbidden you [to eat] unless you are compelled [to do so]? But, behold, [it is precisely in such matters that] many people lead others astray by their own errant views, without [having any real] knowledge. Verily, thy Sustainer is fully aware of those who transgress the bounds of what is right.
And undeviating is this thy Sustainer's way.* Clearly, indeed, have We spelled out these messages unto people who [are willing to] take them to heart!
Theirs shall be an abode of peace with their Sustainer; and He shall be near unto them in result of what they have been doing.
AND ON THE DAY when He shall gather them [all] together, [He will say:] "O you who have lived in close communion with [evil] invisible beings! A great many [other] human beings have you ensnared!* And those of the humans who were close to them* will say: "O our Sustainer! We did enjoy one another's fellowship [in life]; but (now that] we have reached the end of our term-the term which Thou hast laid down for us - (we see the error of our ways]!" [But] He will say: "The fire shall be your abode, therein to abide-unless God wills it otherwise."* Verily, thy Sustainer is wise, all-knowing.
And so it is that thy Sustainer would never destroy a community* for its wrongdoing so long as its people are still unaware [of the meaning of right and wrong]:
for all shall be judged according to their [conscious] deeds* - and thy Sustainer is not unaware of what they do.
And thy Sustainer alone is self-sufficient, limitless in His grace. If He so wills, He may put an end to you and thereafter cause whom He wills to succeed you - even as He has brought you into being out of other people's seed.
Say [O Prophet]: "In all that has been revealed unto me, I do not find anything forbidden to eat, if one wants to eat thereof,* unless it be carrion, or blood poured forth, or the flesh of swine-for that, behold, is loathsome-or a sinful offering* over which any name other than God's has been invoked. But if one is driven by necessity - neither coveting it nor exceeding his immediate need -then [know that], behold, thy Sustainer is much-forgiving, a dispenser of grace."*
And if they give thee the lie,* say: "Limitless is your Sustainer in His grace; but His punishment shall not be averted from people who are lost in sin."
Say: "Bring forward your witnesses who could bear witness that God has forbidden [all] this!"* -and if they bear witness [falsely], do not bear witness with them; and do not follow the errant views of those who have given the lie to Our messages, nor of those who believe not in the life to come, and who regard other powers as their Sustainer's equals!*
Say: "Come, let me convey unto you what God has [really] forbidden to you: "Do not ascribe divinity, in any way, to aught beside Him; and [do not offend against but, rather,] do good unto your parents;* and do not kill your children for fear of poverty - [for] it is We who shall provide sustenance for you as well as for them;* and do not commit any shameful deeds, be they open or secret; and do not take any human being's life-[the life] which God has declared to be sacred -otherwise than in [the pursuit of] justice: this has He enjoined upon you so that you might use your reason;*
AND ONCE AGAIN:* We vouchsafed the divine writ unto Moses in fulfilment [of Our favour] upon those who persevered in doing good, clearly spelling out everything,* and [thus providing] guidance and grace, so that they might have faith in the [final] meeting with their Sustainer.
or lest you say, "If a divine writ had been bestowed from on high upon us, we would surely have followed its guidance better than they did."* And so, a clear evidence of the truth has now come unto you from your Sustainer, and guidance, and grace. Who, then, could be more wicked than he who gives the lie to God's messages, and turns away from them in disdain? We shall requite those who turn away from Our messages in disdain with evil suffering for having thus turned away!
Do they, perchance, wait for the angels to appear unto them, or for thy Sustainer [Himself] to appear, or for some of thy Sustainer's [final] portents to appear?* [But] on the Day when thy Sustainer's [final] portents do appear, believing will be of no avail to any human being who did not believe before, or who, while believing, did no good works.* Say: "Wait, [then, for the Last Day, O unbelievers:] behold, we [believers] are waiting, too!"
SAY: "Behold, my Sustainer has guided me onto a straight way through an ever-true faith-the way of Abraham, who turned away from all that is false, and wa,. not of those who ascribe divinity to aught beside Him."
Say: "Behold, my prayer, and (all] my acts of worship, and my living and my dying are for God [alone], the Sustainer of all the worlds,
Say: "Am I, then, to seek a sustainer other than God, when He is the Sustainer of all things?" And whatever [wrong] any human being commits rests upon himself alone; and no bearer of burdens shall be made to bear another's burden.* And, in time, unto your Sustainer you all must return: and then He will make you. [truly] understand all that on which you were wont to differ.*
For, He it is who has made you inherit the earth,* and has raised some of you by degrees above others, so that He might try you by means of what He has bestowed upon you.* Verily, thy Sustainer is swift in retribution: yet, behold, He is indeed much-forgiving, a dispenser of grace.
"Follow what has been sent down unto you by your Sustainer, and follow no masters other than Him.* How seldom do you keep this in mind!
Thereupon Satan whispered unto the two with a view to making them conscious of their nakedness, of which [hitherto] they had been unaware;* and he said: "Your Sustainer has but forbidden you this tree lest you two become .[as] angels, or lest you live forever."*
-and thus he led them on with deluding thoughts. But as soon as the two had tasted [the fruit] of the tree, they became conscious of their nakedness; and they began to cover themselves with pieced-together leaves from the garden. And their Sustainer called unto them: "Did I not forbid that tree unto you and tell you, `Verily, Satan is your open foe'?"
The two replied: "O our Sustainer! We have sinned against ourselves -and unless Thou grant us forgiveness and bestow Thy mercy upon us, we shall most certainly be lost!"
Say: "My Sustainer has [but] enjoined the doing of what is right; and [He desires you to] put your whole being into every act of worship,* and to call unto Him, sincere in your faith in Him alone. As it was He who brought you into being in the first instance, so also [unto Him] you will return:
Say: "Verily, my Sustainer has forbidden only shameful deeds, be they open or secret, and [every kind of] sinning, and unjustified envy, and the ascribing of divinity to aught beside Him - since He has never bestowed any warrant therefor from on high and the attributing unto God of aught of which you have no knowledge."
[And God] will say: "Join those hosts of invisible beings and humans who have gone before you into the fire!" [And] every time a host enters [the fire], it will curse its fellow-host -so much so that, when they all shall have passed into it, one after another, the last of them will speak [thus] of the first of them:* "O our Sustainer! It is they who have led us astray: give, them, therefore, double suffering through fire!" He, will reply: "Every one of you deserves double suffering* -but you know it not."
after We shall have removed whatever unworthy thoughts or feelings may have been [lingering] in their bosoms. Running waters will flow at their feet;* and they will say: "All praise is due to God, who has guided us unto this; for we would certainly not have found the right path unless God had guided us! Indeed, our Sustainer's apostles have told us the truth!" And [a voice] will call out unto them: "This is the paradise which you have inherited by virtue of your past deeds!"
And the inmates of paradise will call out to the inmates of the fire: "Now we have found that what our Sustainer promised us has come true; have you. too, found that what your Sustainer promised you has come true?" [The others] will answer, "Yes!"-whereupon from their midst a voice* will loudly proclaim: "God's rejection is the due of the evildoers
And whenever their eyes are turned towards the inmates of the fire, they will cry: "O our Sustainer! Place us not among the people who have been guilty of evildoing!"
Are [the unbelievers] but waiting for the final meaning of that [Day of Judgment] to unfold?* [But] on the Day when its final meaning is unfolded, those who aforetime had been oblivious thereof will say: "Our Sustainer's apostles have indeed told us the truth! Have we, then, any intercessors who could intercede in our behalf? Or could we be brought back [to life] so that we might act otherwise than we were wont to act?"* Indeed, they will have squandered their own selves, and all their false imagery will have forsaken them.
VERILY, your Sustainer is God, who has created the heavens and the earth in six aeons, and is established on the throne of His almightiness.* He covers the day with the night in swift pursuit, with the sun and the moon and the stars subservient to His command: oh, verily, His is all creation and all command. Hallowed is God, the Sustainer of all the worlds!
Call unto your Sustainer humbly, and in the secrecy of your hearts. Verily, He loves not those who transgress the bounds of what is right:
As for the good land, its vegetation comes forth [in abundance] by its Sustainer's leave, whereas from the bad it comes forth but poorly. Thus do We give many facets to Our messages for [the benefit of] people who are grateful!
Said [Noah]: "O my people! There is no error in me, but I am an apostle from the Sustainer of all the worlds.
I am delivering unto you my Sustainer's messages and giving you good advice: for I know [through revelation] from God what you do not know.
Why, do you deem it strange that a tiding from your Sustainer should have come unto you through a man from among yourselves, so that he might warn you, and that you might become conscious of God, and that you might be graced with His mercy?"
Said [Hud]: "O my people! There is no weak-mindedness in me, but I am an apostle from the Sustainer of all the worlds.
I am delivering unto you my Sustainer's messages and advising you truly and wells.*
Why, do you deem it strange that a tiding from your Sustainer should have come unto you through a man from among yourselves, so that he might warn you? Do but remember how He made you heirs to Noah's people, and endowed you abundantly with power:* remember, then, God's blessings, so that you might attain to a happy state!"
Said [Hud]: "You are already beset by loath some evils* and by your Sustainer's condemnation! Do you argue with me about the [empty] names which you have invented* - you and your forefathers - for which God has bestowed no warrant from on high? Wait, then, [for what will happen:] verily, I shall wait with you!"*
AND UNTO [the tribe of] Thamud [We sent] their brother salih* He said: "O my people! Worship God alone: you have no deity other than Him. Clear evidence of the truth has now come unto you from your Sustainer. "This she-camel belonging to God shall be a token for you: so leave her alone to pasture on God's earth, and do her no harm, lest grievous chastisement befall you.*
The great ones among his people, who gloried in their arrogance towards all who were deemed weak, said unto the believers among them: "Do you [really] know that salih has been sent by his Sustainer?" They answered: "Verily, we believe in the message which he bears."*
And then they cruelly slaughtered the she-camel* and turned with disdain from their Sustainer's commandment, and said: "O Salih! Bring about that [punishment] with which thou hast threatened us, if thou art truly one of God's message bearers!"
And [Salih] turned away from them, and said: "O my people! Indeed, I delivered unto you my Sustainer's message and gave you good advice: but you did not love those who gave [you] good advice."
AND UNTO [the people of] Madyan [We sent] their brother Shu'ayb .* He said: "O my people! Worship God alone: you have no deity other than Him. Clear evidence of the truth has now come unto you from your Sustainer. Give, therefore, full measure and weight [in all your dealings], and do not deprive people of what is rightfully theirs;* and do not spread corruption on earth after it has be, en so well ordered: [all] this is for your own good, 'if you would but believe.
We should be guilty of blaspheming against God* were we to return to your ways after God has saved us from them! It is not conceivable that we should return to them-unless God, our Sustainer, so wills.* All things does our Sustainer embrace within His knowledge; in God do we place our trust. O our Sustainer! Lay Thou open the truth between us and our people -for Thou art the best of all to lay open the truth!"*
And he turned away from them, and said: "O my people! Indeed, I delivered unto you my Sustainer's message and gave you good advice: how, then, could I mourn for people who have denied the truth?"
And Moses said: "O Pharaoh! Verily, I am an apostle from the Sustainer of all the worlds,
so constituted that I cannot say anything about God but the truth. I have now come unto you with a clear evidence from your Sustainer: let, then, the children of Israel go with me!"
[and] exclaiming: "We have come to believe in the Sustainer of all the worlds,
the Sustainer of Moses and Aaron!"
They answered: "Verily, unto our Sustainer do we turn-
for thou takest vengeance on us only because we have come to believe in our Sustainer's messages as soon as they came to us. O our Sustainer! Shower us with patience in adversity, and make us die as men who have surrendered themselves unto Thee!"
[But the children of Israel ] said: "We have suffered hurt ere thou camest to us and since thou hast come to us!* [Moses] replied: "It may well be that your Sustainer will destroy your foe and make you inherit the earth: and thereupon he will behold how you act."*
And whenever a plague struck them, they would cry: "O Moses, pray for us to thy Sustainer on the strength of the covenant [of prophethood] which He has made with thee! If thou remove this plague from us, we will truly believe in thee. and will let the children of Israel go with thee!"
whereas unto the people who [in the past] had been deemed utterly low, We gave as their heritage the eastern and western parts of the land that We had blessed.* And [thus] thy Sustainer's good promise unto the children of Israel was fulfilled in result of their patience in adversity;* whereas We utterly destroyed all that Pharaoh and his people had wrought, and all that they had built.*
And [he reminded them of this word of God]: "Lo, We saved you from Pharaoh's people who afflicted you with cruel suffering, slaying your sons in great numbers and sparing [only] your women - which was an awesome trial from your Sustainer."*
AND [then] We appointed for Moses thirty nights [on Mount Sinai ]; and We added to them ten, whereby the term of forty nights set bye, his Sustainer was fulfilled.* And Moses said unto his brother Aaron: "Take thou my place among my people; and act righteously, and follow not the path of the spreaders of corruption."
And when Moses came [to Mount Sinai] at the time set by Us, and his Sustainer spoke unto him, he said: "O my Sustainer! Show [Thyself] unto me, so that I might behold Thee!" Said [God]: "Never canst thou see Me. However, behold this mountain: if it remains firm in its place, then - only then - wilt thou see Me.* And as soon as his Sustainer revealed His glory to the mountain, He caused it to crumble to dust; and Moses fell down in a swoon. And when he came to himself, he said: "Limitless art Thou in Thy glory! Unto Thee do I turn in repentance; and I shall [always] be the first to believe in Thee!"*
although [later,] when they would smite their hands in remorse,* having perceived that they had gone astray, they would say, "Indeed, unless our Sustainer have mercy on us and grant us forgiveness, we shall most certainly be among the lost!"*
And when Moses returned to his people, full of wrath and sorrow, he exclaimed: "Vile is the course which you have followed in my absence! Have you forsaken* your Sustainer's commandment?" And he threw down the tablets [of the Law], and seized his brother's head, dragging him towards himself. Cried Aaron: "O my mother's son! Behold, the people brought me low* and almost slew me: so let not mine enemies rejoice at my affliction, and count me not among the evildoing folk!"
Said [Moses]: "O my Sustainer! Grant Thou forgiveness unto me* and my brother, and admit us unto Thy grace: for Thou art the most merciful of the merciful!"
[And to Aaron he said:] "Verily, as for those who have taken to worshipping the [golden] - calf - their Sustainer's condemnation will overtake them, and ignominy [will be their lot] in the -life of this world!" For thus do We requite all who invent [such] falsehood.*
But as for those who do bad deeds and afterwards repent and [truly] believe-verily, after such repentance* thy Sustainer is indeed much forgiving, a dispenser of grace!
And when Moses' wrath as stilled, he took up the tablets, in the writing whereof there was guidance and grace for all who stood in awe of their Sustainer.*
And Moses chose out of his people seventy men to come [and pray for forgiveness] at a time set by Us. Then, when violent trembling seized them,* he prayed: "O my Sustainer! Hadst Thou so willed, Thou wouldst have destroyed them ere this, and me [with them]. Wilt Thou destroy us for what the weak-minded among us have done? (All] this is but a trial from Thee, whereby Thou allowest to go astray whom Thou willest, and guidest aright whom Thou willest. Thou art near unto us: grant us, then, forgiveness and have mercy on us - for Thou art the best of all forgivers!
And whenever some people* among them asked [those who tried to restrain the Sabbath-breakers], "Why do you preach to people whom God is about to destroy or [at least] to chastise with suffering severe?" -the pious ones* would answer, "In order to be free from blame before your Sustainer, and that these [transgressors, too,] might become conscious of Him."
And lo! Thy Sustainer made it known that most certainly He would rouse against them, unto Resurrection Day, people who would afflict them with cruel suffering: verily, thy Sustainer is swift in retribution - yet, verily, He is [also] much-forgiving, a dispenser of grace.
AND WHENEVER thy Sustainer brings forth their offspring from the loins of the children of Adam, He [thus] calls upon them to bear witness about themselves: "Am I not your Sustainer?" - to which they answer: "Yea, indeed, we do bear witness thereto!"* [Of this We remind you,] lest you say on the Day of Resurrection, "Verily, we were unaware of this";
THEY WILL ASK thee [O Prophet] about the Last Hour: "When will it come to pass?" Say: "Verily, knowledge thereof rests with my Sustainer alone. None but He will reveal it in its time. Heavily will it weigh on the heavens and the earth; [and] it will not fall upon you otherwise than of a sudden." They will ask thee - as if thou couldst gain insight into this [mystery] by dint of persistent inquiry!* Say: "Knowledge thereof rests with my Sustainer alone; but [of this] most people are unaware."
IT IS HE who has created you [all] out of one living entity, and out of it brought into being its mate, so that man might incline [with love] towards woman.* And so, when he has embraced her, she conceives [what at first is] a light burden, and continues to bear it. Then, when she grows heavy [with child], they both call unto God, their Sustainer, "If Thou indeed grant us a sound [child], we shall most certainly be among the grateful!"
And yet, when thou [O Prophet] dost not produce any miracle for them, some [people] say, "Why dost thou not seek to obtain it [from God]?* Say: "I only follow whatever is being revealed to me by my Sustainer: this [revelation] is a means of insight from your Sustainer, and a guidance and grace unto people who will believe.
And bethink thyself of thy Sustainer humbly and with awe, and without raising thy voice, at morn and at evening; and do not allow thyself to be heedless.
Behold, those who are near unto thy Sustainer* are never too proud to worship Him; and they extol His limitless glory, and prostrate themselves before Him [alone].
Believers are only they whose hearts tremble with awe whenever God is mentioned, and whose faith is strengthened whenever His messages are conveyed unto them,* and who in their Sustainer place their trust -
it is they, they who are truly believers! Theirs shall be great dignity in their Sustainer's sight, and forgiveness of sins, and a most excellent sustenance.*
EVEN AS thy Sustainer brought thee forth from thy home [to fight] in the cause of the truth, although some of the believers were averse to it,
Lo! You were praying unto your Sustainer for aid, whereupon He thus responded to you: "I shall, verily, aid you with a thousand angels following one upon' another!"
Lo! Thy Sustainer inspired the angels [to convey this His message to the believers]: "I am with you !"* [And He commanded the angels:] "And, give firmness unto those who have attained to faith [with these words from Me]:* `I shall cast terror into the hearts of those who are bent on denying the truth; strike, then, their necks, [O believers,] and strike off every one of their finger-tips!"*
[To those sinners shall happen] the like of what happened to Pharaoh's people and those who lived before them: they gave the lie to their Sustainer's messages - and so We destroyed them in return for their sins, and caused Pharaoh's people to drown: for they were evildoers all.
Their Sustainer gives them the glad tiding of the grace [that flows] from Him, and of [His] goodly acceptance, and of the gardens which await them, full of lasting bliss,
They have taken their rabbis and their monks-as well as the Christ, son of Mary-for their lords beside God,* although they had been bidden to worship none but the One God, save whom there is no deity: the One who is utterly remote, in His limitless glory, from anything to which they may ascribe a share in His divinity!
But if those [who are bent on denying the truth] turn away, say: "God is enough for me! There is no- deity save Him. In Him have I placed my trust, for He is the Sustainer, in awesome almightiness enthroned."*
Do people deem it strange that We should have inspired a man from their own midst [with this Our message]:* "Warn all mankind, and give unto those who have attained to faith the glad tiding that in their Sustainer's sight they surpass all others in that they are completely sincere-?* [Only] they who deny the truth say, "Behold. he is clearly but a spellbinder!"*
VERILY, your Sustainer is God, who has created the heavens and the earth in six aeons, and is established on the throne of His almightiness,* governing all that exists. There is none that could intercede with Him unless He grants leave therefor.* Thus is God, your Sustainer: worship, therefore, Him [alone]: will you not, then, keep this in mind?
[But,] verily, as for those who have attained to faith and do righteous deeds - their Sustainer guides them aright by means of their faith. [In the life to come,] running waters will flow at their feet* in gardens of bliss;
[and] in that [state of happiness] they will call out,* "Limitless art Thou in Thy glory, O God!"-and will be answered with the greeting, "Peace !"* And their call will close with [the words], "All praise is due to God, the Sustainer of all the worlds!"
AND [thus it is:] whenever Our messages are conveyed unto them in all their clarity, those who do not believe that they are destined to meet Us [are wont to] say, "Bring us a discourse other than this, or alter this one."* Say [O Prophet]: "It is not conceivable that I should alter it of my own volition; I only follow what is revealed to me. Behold, I would dread, were I [thus] to rebel against my Sustainer, the suffering [which would befall me] on that ,awesome Day [of Judgment]!"
AND [know that] all mankind were once but one single community, and only later did they begin to hold divergent views.* And had it not been for a decree- that had already gone forth from thy Sustainer, all their differences would indeed have been settled [from the outset].*
NOW THEY [who deny the truth] are wont to ask, "Why has no miraculous sign ever been bestowed upon him from on high by his Sustainer?"* Say, then: "God's alone is the knowledge of that which. is beyond the reach of human perception.* Wait, then, [until His will becomes manifest:] verily, I shall wait with you!"
seeing that He is God, your Sustainer, the Ultimate Truth?* For, after the truth [has been forsaken], what is there [left] but error? How, then, can you lose sight of the truth?"*
Thus is thy Sustainer's word proved true with regard to such as are bent on sinful doings: they will not believes*
Now this Qur'an could not possibly have been devised by anyone save God: nay indeed,* it confirms the truth of whatever there still remains [of earlier revelations] and clearly spells out the revelation [which comes] -let there be no doubt about it-from the Sustainer of all the worlds.*
And there are among them such as will in time come to believe in this [divine writ], just as there are among them such as will never believe in it;* and thy Sustainer is fully aware as to who are the spreaders of corruption.
And some people* ask thee, "Is all this true?" Say: "Yea, by my Sustainer! It is most certainly true, and you cannot elude [the final reckoning]!"
O MANKIND! There has now come unto you an admonition from your Sustainer, and a cure for all [the ill] that may be in men's hearts,* and guidance and grace unto all who believe [in Him].
AND IN whatever condition thou mayest find thyself, [O Prophet,] and whatever discourse of this [divine writ]* thou mayest be reciting, and whatever work you [all, O men,] may do -[remember that] We are your witness* [from the moment] when you enter upon it: for, not even an atom's weight [of whatever there is] on earth or in heaven escapes thy Sustainer's knowledge; and neither is there anything smaller than that, or larger, but is recorded in [His] clear decree.
Whereupon they answered: "In God have we placed our trust! O our Sustainer, make us not a plaything* for evildoing folk,
And Moses prayed: "O our Sustainer! Verily, splendour and riches hast Thou vouchsafed, in the life of this world, unto Pharaoh and his great ones-with the result, O our Sustainer, that they are leading [others] astray from Thy path!* O our Sustainer! Wipe out their riches, and harden their hearts, so that they may not attain to faith ere they see the grievous suffering [that awaits them]!"
And [thereafter], indeed, We assigned unto the children of Israel a most goodly abode,* and provided for them sustenance out of the good things of life. And it was not until knowledge [of God's revelation] was vouchsafed to them that they began to hold divergent views: [but,] verily, thy Sustainer will judge between them on Resurrection Day regarding all on which they were wont to differ.*
AND SO, [O man,] if thou art in doubt about [the truth of] what We have [now] bestowed upon thee from on high,* ask those who read the divine writ [revealed] before thy time:* [and thou wilt find that,] surely, the truth has now come unto thee from thy Sustainer. Be not, then, among the doubters -
Verily, they against whom thy Sustainer's word [of judgment] has come true* will not attain to faith -
And [thus it is:] had thy Sustainer so willed, all those who live on earth would surely have attained to faith, all of them:* dost thou, then, think that thou couldst compel people to believe,
SAY [O Prophet]: "O mankind! The truth from your Sustainer has now come unto you. Whoever, therefore, chooses to follow the right path, follows it but for his own good; and whoever chooses to go astray, goes but astray to his own hurt. And I am not responsible for your conduct."
Ask your Sustainer to forgive you your sins, and then turn towards Him in repentance - [whereupon] He will grant you a goodly enjoyment of life [in this world] until a term set [by Him is fulfilled];* and [in the life to come] He will bestow upon everyone possessed of merit [a full reward for] his merit.* But if you turn away, then, verily, I dread for you the suffering [which is bound to befall you] on that awesome Day*
Can, then, [he who cares for no more than the life of this world be compared with* ] one who takes his stand on a clear evidence from his Sustainer, conveyed through [this] testimony from Him,* as was the revelation vouchsafed to Moses aforetime-[a divine writ ordained by Him] to be a guidance and grace [unto man]? They [who understand this message-it is they alone who truly] believe in it;* whereas for any of those who, leagued together [in common hostility],* deny its truth - the fire shall be their appointed state [in the life to come]. And so,* be not in doubt about this [revelation]: behold, it is the truth from thy Sustainer, even though* most people will not believe in it.
And who could be more wicked than they who attribute their own lying inventions to God?* [On the Day of Judgment, such as] these shall be arraigned before their Sustainer, and those who are called upon to bear witness [against them]* shall say, "It is they who uttered lies about their Sustainer!"* Oh, verily, God's rejection is the due of all evildoers*
Behold, [only] those who attain to faith and do righteous deeds and humble themselves before their Sustainer - [only] they are destined for paradise, and there shall they abide.
Said [Noah]: "O my people! What do you think? If [it be true that I am taking my stand on a clear evidence from my~ Sustainer, who has vouchsafed unto me grace from Himself - [a revelation] to which you have remained blind-: [if this be true,] can we force it on you even though it be hateful to you?*
"And, O my people, no benefit do I ask of you for this [message]: my reward rests with none but God. And I shall not repulse [any of] those who have attained to faith.* Verily, they [know that they] are destined to meet their Sustainer, whereas in you I see people without any awareness [of right and wrong]!
for, my advice will not benefit you -much as I desire to give you good advice - if it be God's will that you shall remain lost in grievous error.* He is your Sustainer, and unto Him you must return."
So he said [unto his followers]: "Embark in this [ship]! In the name of God be its run and its riding at anchor! Behold, my. Sustainer is indeed much-forgiving, a dispenser of grace!"
And Noah called out to his Sustainer, and said: "O my Sustainer! Verily, my son was of my family;* and, verily, Thy promise always comes true, and Thou art the most just of all judges!"
Said [Noah]: "O my Sustainer! Verily, I seek refuge with Thee from [ever again] asking of Thee anything whereof I cannot have any knowledge! For unless Thou grant me forgiveness and bestow Thy mercy upon me, I shall be among the lost!"
"Hence, O my people, ask your Sustainer to forgive you your sins, and then turn towards Him in repentance-[whereupon] He will shower upon you heavenly blessings abundant,* and will add strength to your strength: only do not turn away [from me] as people lost in sin!"
Behold, I have placed my trust in God, [who is] my Sustainer as well as your Sustainer: for there is no living creature which He does not hold by its forelock.* Verily, straight is my Sustainer's way!*
"But if you choose to turn away, then [know that] I have delivered to you the message with which I was sent unto you, and [that] my Sustainer may cause another people to take your place,* whereas you will in no wise harm Him. Verily, my Sustainer watches over all things!"
And that was [the end of the tribe of] `Ad, [who] had rejected their Sustainer's messages, and rebelled against His apostles, and followed the bidding of every arrogant enemy of the truth.*
And they were pursued in this world by [God's] rejection, and [shall finally be overtaken by it] on the Day of Resurrection.* Oh, verily, [the tribe of] `Ad denied their Sustainer! Oh, away with the `Ad, the people of Hud!
AND UNTO [the tribe of] Thamud [We sent] their brother Salih.* He said: "O my people! Worship God [alone]: you have no deity other than Him. He brought you into being out of the earth,* and made you thrive thereon.* Ask Him, therefore, to forgive you your sins, and then turn towards Him in repentance-for, verily, my Sustainer is ever-near, responding [to the call of whoever calls unto Him]!"*
He retorted: "O my people! What do you think? If [it be true that] I am taking my stand on a cleat evidence from my Sustainer, who has vouchsafed unto me grace from Himself -[if this be true,] who would shield me from God were I to rebel against Him?* Hence, what you are offering me is no more than perdition!"*
And so, when Our judgment came to pass, by Our grace We saved Salih and those who shared his faith; and [We saved them, too,] from the ignominy of [Our rejection on] that Day [of Resurrection]. Verily, thy Sustainer alone is powerful, almighty!
as though they had never lived there. Oh, verily, [the tribe of] Thamud denied their Sustainer! Oh, away with the Thamud!
[But God's messengers replied:] "O Abraham! Desist from this [pleading]! Behold, thy Sustainer's judgment has already gone forth: and, verily, there shall fall upon them a chastisement which none can avert!"
[Whereupon the angels] said: "O Lot! Behold, we are messengers from thy Sustainer! Never shall [thy enemies] attain to thee! Depart, then, with thy household while it is yet night, and let none of you look back;* [and take with thee all thy family] with the exception of thy wife: for, behold, that which is to befall these [people of Sodom] shall befall her [as well].* Verily, their appointed time is the morning [and] is not the morning nigh?"
marked out in thy Sustainer's sight [for the punishment of such as are lost in sin]. And these [blows of God-willed doom] are never far from evildoers*
He answered: "O my people! What do you think? If [it be true that] I am taking my stand on a clear evidence from my Sustainer, who has vouchsafed me goodly sustenance [as a gift] from Himself - [how could I speak to you otherwise than I do]?* And yet, I have no desire to do, out of opposition to you, what I am asking you not to do:* I desire no more than to set things to rights in so far as it lies within my power; but the achievement of my aim depends on God alone. In Him have I placed my trust, and unto Him do I always turn!
Hence, ask your Sustainer to forgive you your sins, and then turn towards Him in repentance - for, verily, my Sustainer is a dispenser of grace, a fount of love!"
Said he: "O my people! Do you hold my family in greater esteem than God? -for, Him you regard as something that may be cast behind you and be forgotten!* Verily, my Sustainer encompasses [with His might] all that you do!
for, no wrong did We do to them, but it was they who wronged themselves. And when thy Sustainer's judgment came to pass, those deities of theirs which they had been wont to invoke instead of God proved of no avail whatever to them, and brought them no more than utter perdition.
And such is thy Sustainer's punishing grasp whenever He takes to task any community that is given to evildoing: verily, His punishing grasp is grievous, severe!
therein to abide as long as the heavens and the earth endure-unless thy Sustainer wills it otherwise:* for, verily, thy Sustainer is a sovereign doer of whatever He wills.
But as for those who [by virtue of their past deeds] will have been blest with happiness, [they shall live] in paradise, therein to abide as long as the heavens and the earth endure -unless thy Sustainer wills it otherwise* -as a gift unceasing.
And, indeed, [similar was the case when] We vouchsafed the divine writ unto Moses, and some of his people set their own views against it;* and had it not been for a decree that had already gone forth from thy Sustainer, judgment would indeed have been passed on them [then and there]:* for, behold, they were in grave doubt, amounting to suspicion, about him [who called them unto God].*
And, verily, unto each and all will thy Sustainer give their full due for whatever [good or evil] they may have done: behold, He is aware of all that they do!
For, never would thy Sustainer destroy a community* for wrong [beliefs alone] so long as its people behave righteously [towards one another].*
And had thy Sustainer so willed, He could surely have made all mankind one single community: but [He willed it otherwise, and so] they continue to hold divergent views'*
[all of them,] save those upon whom thy Sustainer has bestowed His grace.* And to this end has He created them [all.* But [as for those who refuse to avail themselves of divine guidance,] that word of thy Sustainer shall be fulfilled: "Most certainly will I fill hell with invisible beings as well as with humans, all together!"*
And God alone comprehends the hidden reality of the heavens and the earth:* for, all that exists goes back to Him [as its source]. Worship Him, then, and place thy trust in Him alone: for thy Sustainer is not unaware of what you do.
For, [as thou hast been shown in thy dream,] even thus will thy Sustainer elect thee, and will impart unto thee some understanding of the inner meaning of happenings,* and will bestow the full measure of His blessings upon thee and upon the House of Jacob -even as, aforetime, He bestowed it in full measure upon thy forefathers Abraham and Isaac. Verily, thy Sustainer is all-knowing, wise!"
And [it so happened that] she in whose house he was living [conceived a passion for him and] sought to make him yield himself unto her; and she bolted the doors and said, "Come thou unto me!" [But Joseph] answered: "May God preserve me! Behold, goodly has my master made my stay [in this house]! Verily, to no good end come they that do [such] wrong!"
And, indeed, she desired him, and he desired her; [and he would have succumbed] had he not seen [in this temptation] an evidence of his Sustainer's truth:* thus [We willed it to be] in order that We might avert from him all evil and all deeds of abomination -for, behold, he was truly one of Our servants.*
Said he: "O my Sustainer! Prison is more desirable to me than [compliance with] what these women invite me to: for, unless Thou turn away their guile from me, I might yet yield to their allure* and become one of those who are unaware [of right and wrong]."
And his Sustainer responded to his prayer, and freed him from the threat of their guile:* verily, He alone is all-hearing, all-knowing.
[Joseph] answered: "Ere there comes unto you the meal which you are [daily] fed, I shall have informed you of the real meaning of your dreams,* [so that you might know what is to come] before it comes unto you: for this is [part] of the knowledge which my Sustainer has imparted to me. "Behold, I have left behind me the ways of people who do not believe in God,* and who persistently refuse to acknowledge the truth of the life to come;
"O my companions in imprisonment! Which is more reasonable:* [belief in the existence of numerous divine] lords, each of them different from the other"* -or [in] the One God, who holds absolute sway over all that exists?
"[And now,] O my companions in imprisonment, [I shall tell you the meaning of your dreams:] as for one of you two, he will [again] give his lord [the King] wine to drink; but as for the other, he will be crucified, and birds will eat off his head. [But whatever be your future,] the matter on which you have asked me to enlighten you has been decided [by God]."
And [thereupon Joseph] said unto the one of the two whom he considered saved: "Mention me unto thy lord [when thou art free]!" But Satan caused him to forget to mention [Joseph] to his lord, and so he remained in prison a few [more] years.
And [as soon as Joseph's interpretation. was conveyed to him,] the King said: "Bring him before me!" But when the [King's] messenger came unto him, [Joseph] said: "Go back to thy lord and ask him [first to find out the truth] about those women who cut their hands-for, behold, [until now it is] my Sustainer [alone who] has full knowledge of their guile!"
And yet, I am not trying to absolve myself: for, verily, man's inner self does incite [him] to evil,* and saved are only they upon whom my Sustainer bestows His grace.* Behold, my Sustainer is much forgiving, a dispenser of grace!"
He said: "I shall ask my Sustainer to forgive you: He alone is truly forgiving, a true dispenser of grace!"
And he raised his parents to the highest place of honour;* and they [all] fell down before Him, prostrating themselves in adoration.* Thereupon [Joseph] said: "O my father! This is the real meaning of my dream of long ago, which my Sustainer has made come true.* And He was indeed good to me when He freed me from the prison, and [when] He brought you [all unto me] from the desert after Satan had sown discord between me and my brothers. Verily, my Sustainer is unfathomable in [the way He brings about] whatever He wills:* verily, He alone is all-knowing, truly wise!
"O my Sustainer! Thou hast indeed bestowed upon me something of power,* and hast imparted unto me some knowledge of the inner meaning of happenings.* Originator of the heavens and the earth! Thou art near unto me in this world and in the life to come: let me die as one who has surrendered himself unto Thee, and make me one with the righteous!"
Alif. Lam. Mim. Ra.* THESE ARE MESSAGES of revelation:* and what has been bestowed upon thee from on high by thy Sustainer is the truth-yet most people will not believe [in it]?*
It is God who has raised the heavens without any supports that you could see, and is established on the throne of His almightiness;* and He [it is who] has made the sun and the moon subservient [to His laws], each running its course for a term set [by Him].* He governs all that exists. Clearly does He spell out these messages, so that you might be certain in your innermost that you are destined to meet your Sustainer [on Judgment Day].*
BUT IF thou art amazed [at the marvels of God's creation], amazing, too, is their saying, "What! After we have become dust, shall we indeed be [restored to life] in a new act .of creation?"* It is they who [thus show that they] are bent on denying their Sustainer;* and it is they who carry the shackles [of their own making] around their necks;* and it is they who are destined for the fire, therein to abide.
And [since, O Prophet, they are bent on denying the truth,] they challenge thee to hasten the coming upon them of evil instead of [hoping for] good* although [they ought to know that] the exemplary punishments [which they now deride] have indeed come to pass before their time. Now, behold, thy Sustainer is full of forgiveness unto men despite all their evildoing:* but, behold, thy Sustainer is [also] truly severe in retribution!
However, they who are bent on denying the truth [refuse to believe and] say, "Why has no miraculous sign ever been bestowed on him from on high by his Sustainer?"* [But] thou art only a warmer; and [in God] all people have a guide.*
Say: "Who is the Sustainer of the heavens and the earth?" Say: "[It is] God." Say: "[Why,] then, do you take for your protectors, instead of Him, such as have it not within their power to bring benefit to, or avert harm from, themselves?" Say: "Can the blind and the seeing be deemed equal? -or can the depths of darkness and the light be deemed equal?" Or do they [really] believe that there are, side by side with God, other divine powers* that have created the like of what He creates, so that this act of creation appears to them to be similar [to His]?* Say: "God is the Creator of all things; and He is the One who holds absolute sway over all that exists."
of those who have responded to their Sustainer with a goodly response, and of those who did not respond to Him.* [As for the latter,] if they possessed all that is on earth, and twice as much,* they would surely offer it as ransom [on the Day of Judgment] :* a most evil reckoning awaits them, and their goal is hell: and how evil a resting-place!
CAN, THEN, he who knows that whatever has been bestowed from on high upon thee by thy Sustainer is the truth be deemed equal to one who is blind? Only they who are endowed with insight keep this in mind:
and who keep together what God has bidden to be joined,* and stand in awe of their Sustainer and fear the most evil reckoning [which awaits such as do not respond to Him];
and who are patient in adversity out of a longing for their Sustainer's countenance, and are constant in prayer, and spend on others, secretly and openly, out of what We provide for them as sustenance, and [who] repel evil with good.* It is these that shall find their fulfilment in the hereafter:*
NOW THOSE who are bent on denying the truth [of the Prophet's message] say, "Why has no miraculous sign ever been bestowed upon him from on high by his Sustainer?"* Say: "Behold, God lets go astray him who wills [to go astray],* just as He guides unto Himself all who turn unto Him-
Thus* have We raised thee [O Muhammad] as Our Apostle amidst a community [of unbelievers] before whose time [similar] communities have come and gone,* so that thou might propound to them what We have revealed unto thee: for [in their ignorance] they deny the Most Gracious !* Say: "He is my Sustainer. There is no deity save Him. In Him have I placed my trust, and unto Him is my recourse!"
Alif. Lam. Ra.* A DIVINE WRIT [is this -a revelation] which We have bestowed upon thee from on high in order that thou might bring forth all mankind, by their Sustainer's leave, out of the depths of darkness into the light: onto the way that leads to the Almighty, the One to whom all praise is due -
And, lo* Moses spoke [thus] unto his people: "Remember the blessings which God bestowed upon you when He saved you from Pharaoh's people who afflicted you with cruel suffering, and slaughtered your sons, and spared [only] your women* -which was an awesome trial from your Sustainer.
And [remember the time] when your Sustainer made [this promise] known: 'If you are grateful [to Me], I shall most certainly give you more and more;* but if you are ungrateful, verily, My chastisement will be severe indeed!"'
But they who denied the truth spoke [thus] unto their apostles: "We shall most certainly expel you from our land, unless you return forthwith to our ways.* Whereupon their Sustainer revealed this to His apostles:* "Most certainly shall We destroy these evildoers,
[This, then, is] the parable of those who are bent on denying their Sustainer: all their works* are as ashes which the wind blows about fiercely on a stormy day: [in the life to come,] they cannot achieve any benefit whatever from all [the good] that they may have wrought: for this [denial of God] is indeed the farthest one can go astray.*
But those who shall have attained to faith and done righteous deeds will be brought into gardens through which running waters flow, therein to abide by their Sustainer's leave, and will be welcomed with the greeting, "Peace!"*
yielding its fruit at all times by its Sustainer's leave. And [thus it is that] God propounds parables unto men,' so that they might bethink themselves [of the truth].*
AND [remember the time] when Abraham spoke [thus]:* "O my Sustainer! Make this land secure,* and preserve me and my children from ever worshipping idols* -
for, verily, O my Sustainer, these [false objects of worship] have led many people astray! "Hence, [only] he who follows me [in this my faith]~ is truly of me;* and as for him who disobeys me - Thou art, verily, much-forgiving, a dispenser of grace!
"O our Sustainer! Behold, I have settled some of my offspring in a valley in which there is no arable land,* close to Thy sanctified Temple, so that, O our Sustainer, they might devote themselves to prayer: cause Thou, therefore, people's hearts to incline towards them* and grant them fruitful sustenance, so that they might have cause to be grateful.
"O our Sustainer! Thou truly knowest all that we may hide [in our hearts] as well as all that we bring into the open:' for nothing whatever, be it on earth or in heaven, remains hidden from God.
"All praise is due to God, who has bestowed upon me, in my old age, Ishmael and Isaac! Behold, my Sustainer hears indeed all prayer:
[hence,] O my Sustainer, cause me and [some] of my offspring to remain constant in prayer!* "And, O our Sustainer, accept this my prayer:
Grant Thy forgiveness unto me, and my parents, and all the believers, on the Day on which the [last] reckoning will come to pass!"
Hence, warn men of the Day when this suffering may befall them, and when those who did wrong [in their lifetime] will exclaim: "O our Sustainer! Grant us respite for a short while, so that we might respond to Thy call and follow the apostles!"* [But God will answer:] "Why - were you not aforetime wont to swear that no kind of resurrection and retribution awaited you?*
and, behold, it is thy Sustainer who will gather them all together [on Judgment Day]: verily, He is wise, all-knowing!
And lo! Thy Sustainer said unto the angels: "Behold, I am about to create mortal man out of sounding clay, out of dark slime transmuted;
Said [Iblis]: "Then, O my Sustainer, grant me a respite till the Day when all shall be raised from the dead!"
[Whereupon Iblis] said: "O my Sustainer! Since Thou hast thwarted me,* I shall indeed make [all that is evil] on earth seem goodly to them, and shall most certainly beguile them-into grievous error -
[Abraham] exclaimed: "And who-other than those who have utterly lost their way-could ever abandon the hope of his Sustainer's grace?"
verily, thy Sustainer is the all-knowing Creator of all things!*
But, by thy Sustainer! [On the Day of Judgment] We shall indeed call them to account, one and all,
but extol thou thy Sustainer's limitless glory and praise Him, and be of those who prostrate themselves [before Him] in adoration,
and worship thy Sustainer till death comes to thee.*
And they carry your loads to [many] a place which [otherwise] you would be unable to reach without great hardship to yourselves. Verily, your Sustainer is most compassionate, a dispenser of grace!
and [who], whenever they are asked, "What is it that your Sustainer has bestowed from on high?"-are wont to answer, "Fables of ancient times!"*
But [when] those who are conscious of God are asked, "What is it that your Sustainer has bestowed from on high?" -they answer, "Goodness supreme!" Good fortune awaits, in this world, all who persevere in doing good;* but their ultimate state will be far better still: for, how excellent indeed will be the state of the God-conscious [in the life to come]!
ARE THEY [who deny the truth] but waiting for the angels to appear unto them, or for God's judgment to become manifest?* Even thus did behave those [stubborn sinners] who lived before their time; and [when they were destroyed,] it was not God who wronged them, but it was they who had wronged themselves:
those who, having attained to patience in adversity, in their Sustainer place their trust!*
or take them to task through slow decay?* And yet, behold, your Sustainer is most compassionate, a dispenser of grace!*
they fear their Sustainer high above them, and do whatever they are bidden to do.*
yet as soon as He has removed the harm from you, lo! some of you [begin to] ascribe to other powers a share 'in their Sustainer's divinity*
And [consider how] thy Sustainer has inspired the bee:* "Prepare for thyself dwellings in mountains and in trees, and in what [men] may build [for thee by way of hives];
and then eat of all manner of fruit, and follow humbly the paths ordained for thee by thy Sustainer."* [And lo!] there issues from within these [bees] a fluid of many hues, wherein there is health for man. In all this, behold, there is a message indeed for people who think!
And when they who were wont to ascribe divinity to beings other than God behold [on Judgment Day] those beings to whom they were wont to ascribe a share in His divinity,* they will exclaim: "O our Sustainer! These are the beings to whom we ascribed a share in Thy divinity, and whom we were wont to invoke instead of Thee !"* -whereupon [those beings] will fling at them the retort: "Behold, you have indeed been lying [to yourselves]!"*
Behold, he has no power over those who have attained to faith and in their Sustainer place their tray trust:
Say: "Holy inspiration* has brought it down from thy Sustainer by stages, setting forth the truth, so that it might give firmness unto those who have attained to faith, and provide guidance and a glad tiding unto all who have surrendered themselves to God."
And yet, behold, thy Sustainer [grants His forgiveness] unto those who forsake the domain of evil after having succumbed to its temptation,* and who thenceforth strive hard [in God's cause] and are patient in adversity: behold, after such [repentance] thy Sustainer is indeed much-forgiving, a dispenser of grace!
And once again:* Behold, thy Sustainer [shows mercy] to those who do evil out of ignorance and afterwards repent and live righteously: behold, after such [repentance] thy Sustainer is indeed much forgiving, a dispenser of grace.
[and know that the observance of] the Sabbath was ordained only for those who came to hold divergent views about him;* but, verily, God will judge between them on Resurrection Day with regard to all on which they were wont to differ.*
CALL THOU (all mankind] unto thy Sustainer's path with wisdom and goodly exhortation, and argue with them in the most kindly manner-* for, behold, thy Sustainer knows best as to who strays from His path, and best knows He as to who are the right-guided.
Your Sustainer may well show mercy unto you; but if you revert [to sinning], We shall revert [to chastising you]. And [remember this:] We have ordained that [in the hereafter] hell shall close upon all who deny the truth.
And We have established the night and the day as two symbols;* and thereupon We have effaced the symbol of night and set up [in its place] the light giving symbol of day,* so that you might seek to obtain your Sustainer's bounty and be aware of the passing years* and of the reckoning [that is bound to come]. For clearly, most clearly, have We spelt out everything!*
And how many a generation have We [thus] destroyed after [the time of] Noah! For, none has the like of thy Sustainer's awareness and insight into His creatures' sins.
All [of them] -these as well as those -do We freely endow with some of thy Sustainer's gifts, since thy Sustainer's giving is never confined [to one kind of man].
for thy Sustainer has ordained that you shall worship none but Him. And do good unto [thy] parents.* Should one of them, or both, attain to old age in thy care, never say "Ugh"* to them or scold them, but [always] speak unto them with reverent speech,
and spread over them humbly the wings of thy tenderness,* and say: "O my Sustainer! Bestow Thy grace upon them, even as they cherished and reared me when I was a child!"
Your Sustainer is fully aware of what is in your hearts. If you are righteous, [He will forgive you your errors]:* for, behold, He is much-forgiving to those who turn unto Him again and again.
Behold, the squanderers are, indeed, of the ilk of the satans - inasmuch as Satan has indeed proved most ungrateful to his Sustainer.*
And if thou [must] turn aside from those [that are in want, because thou thyself art] seeking to obtain thy Sustainer's grace and hoping for it,* at least speak unto them with gentle speech.
Behold, thy Sustainer grants abundant sustenance, or gives it in scant measure, unto whomever He wills: verily, fully aware is He of [the needs of] His creatures, and sees them all.
The evil of all this is odious in thy Sustainer's sight:*
this is part of that knowledge of right and wrong with which thy Sustainer has inspired thee.* Hence, do not set up any other deity side by side with God,* lest thou be cast into hell, blamed [by thyself] and rejected [by Him]!
HAS, THEN, your Sustainer distinguished you by [giving you] sons, and taken unto Himself daughters in the guise of angels?* Verily, you are uttering a dreadful saying!
for, over their hearts We have laid veils which prevent them from grasping its purport, and into their ears, deafness.* And so, whenever thou dost mention, while reciting the Qur'an, thy Sustainer as the one and only Divine Being,* they turn their backs [upon thee] in aversion.
Your Sustainer is fully aware of what you are [and what you deserve]: if He so wills, he will bestow [His] grace upon you; and if He so wills, He will chastise you. Hence, We have not sent thee [unto men, O Prophet,] with the power to determine their fate,*
seeing that thy Sustainer is fully aware of [what is in the minds of] all beings that are in the heavens and on earth. But, indeed, We did endow some of the prophets more highly than others* -just as We bestowed upon David a book of divine wisdom [in token of Our grace]*
Those [saintly beings] whom they invoke are themselves striving to obtain their Sustainer's favour - [even] those among them who are closest [to Him]* - hoping for His grace and dreading His chastisement: for, verily, thy Sustainer's chastisement is something to beware of!
And lo! We said unto thee, [O Prophet:] "Behold, thy Sustainer encompasses all mankind [within His knowledge and might]: and so We have ordained that the vision which We have shown thee* -as also the tree [of hell,] cursed in this Qur'an - shall be but a trial for men .* Now [by Our mentioning hell] We convey a warning to them: but [if they are bent on denying the truth,] this [warning] only increases their gross, overweening arrogance."
"(And yet,] behold, thou shalt have no power over [such of] My servants [as place their trust in Me]:* for none is as worthy of trust as thy Sustainer."
YOUR SUSTAINER is He who causes ships to move onward for you through the sea, so that you might go about in quest of some of His bounty: verily, a dispenser of grace is He unto you.
And rise from thy sleep and pray during part of the night [as well], as a free offering from thee,* and thy Sustainer may well raise thee to a glorious station [in the life to come].
And say [in thy prayer]: "O my Sustainer! Cause me to enter [upon whatever I may do] in a manner .true and sincere, and cause me to leave [it] in a manner true and sincere, and grant me, out of Thy grace, sustaining strength!"
Say: "Everyone acts in a manner peculiar to himself -and your Sustainer is fully aware as to who has chosen the best path."*
AND THEY will ask thee about [the nature of] divine inspiration.* Say: "This inspiration [comes] at my Sustainer's behest; and [you cannot understand its nature, O men, since] you have been granted very little of [real] knowledge."
[Thou art spared] only by thy Sustainer's grace: behold, His favour towards thee is great indeed!
or thou have a house [made] of gold, or thou ascend to heaven - but nay, we would not [even] believe in thy ascension unless thou bring down to us [from heaven] a writing which we [ourselves] could read!* Say thou, [O Prophet:] "Limitless in His glory is my Sustainer!* Am I, then, aught but a mortal man, an apostle?"
Say: "If you were to own' all the treasure-houses of my Sustainer's bounty,* lo! you would still try to hold on [to them] tightly for fear of spending [too much]: for man has always been avaricious [whereas God is limitless in His bounty].*
Answered [Moses]: "Thou knowest well that none but the Sustainer of the heavens and the earth has bestowed these [miraculous signs] from on high, as a means of insight [for thee];* and, verily, O Pharaoh, [since thou hast chosen to reject them;] I think that thou art utterly lost!"
and say, "Limitless in His glory is our Sustainer! Verily, our Sustainer's promise has been fulfilled!"*
When those youths took refuge in the cave, they prayed: "O our Sustainer! Bestow on us grace from Thyself, and endow us, whatever our [outward] condition, with consciousness of what is right!"*
[And now] We shall truly relate to thee their story:* Behold, they were young men who had attained to faith in their Sustainer: and [so] We deepened their consciousness of the right way*
and endowed their hearts with strength, so that they stood up* and said [to one another]: "Our Sustainer is the Sustainer of the heavens and the earth. Never shall we invoke any deity other than Him: [if we did,] we should indeed have uttered an enormity!
Hence, now that you have withdrawn from them and from all that they worship instead of God, take refuge in that cave: God will spread His grace over you, and will endow you - whatever your [outward] condition - with all that your souls may need!*
And so, [in the course of time,] We awakened them;* and they began to ask one another [as to what had happened to them].* One of them asked: "How long have you remained thus?" [The others] answered: "We have remained thus a day, or part of a day."* Said they [who were endowed with deeper insight]: "Your Sustainer knows best how long you have thus remained.* Let, then, one of you go with these silver coins to the town, and let him find out what food is purest there, and bring you thereof [some] provisions. But let him behave with great care and by no means make anyone aware of you:
AND IN THIS way* have We drawn [people's] attention to their story,* so that they might know - whenever they debate among themselves as to what happened to those [Men of the Cave]* that God's promise [of resurrection] is true, and that there can be no doubt as to [the coming of] the Last Hour. And so, some [people] said: "Erect a building in their memory;* God knows best what happened to them." Said they whose opinion prevailed in the end: "Indeed, we must surely raise a house of worship in their memory!"
[And in times to come] some will say,* "[They were] three, the fourth of them being their dog," while others will say, "Five, with their dog as the sixth of them" -idly guessing at something of which they can have no knowledge -and [so on, until] some will say, "[They were] seven, the eighth of them being their dog." Say: "My Sustainer knows best how many they were. None but a few have any [real] knowledge of them. Hence, do not argue about them otherwise than by way of an obvious argument,* and do not ask any of those [story-tellers] to enlighten thee about them."
without (adding], "if God so wills."* And if thou shouldst forget [thyself at the time, and become aware of it later], call thy Sustainer to mind and say: "I pray that my Sustainer guide me, even closer than this, to a consciousness of what is right!"
AND CONVEY [to the world] whatever has been revealed to thee of thy Sustainer's writ. There is nothing that could alter His words;* and thou canst find no refuge other than with Him.
And contain thyself in patience by the side of all who at morn and at evening invoke their Sustainer, seeking His countenance, and let not thine eyes pass beyond them in quest of the beauties of this world's life;* and pay no heed to any whose heart We have rendered heedless of all remembrance of Us* because he had always followed [only] his own desires, abandoning all that is good and true.*
And say: "The truth [has now come] from your Sustainer: let, then, him who wills, believe in it, and let him who wills, reject it." Verily, for all who sin against themselves [by rejecting Our truth]* We have readied a fire whose billowing folds will encompass them from all sides;* and if they beg for water, they will be given water [hot] like molten lead, which will scald their faces: how dreadful a drink, and how evil a place to rest!
And neither do I think that the Last Hour will ever come. But even if [it should come, and] I am brought before my Sustainer,* I will surely find something even better than this as [my last] resort!"
But as for myself, [I. know that] He is God, my Sustainer; and I cannot attribute divine powers to any but my Sustainer."*
yet it may well be that my Sustainer will give me something better than thy garden -just as He may let loose a calamity out of heaven upon this [thy garden], so that it becomes a heap of barren dust
And [thus it happened:] his fruitful gardens were encompassed [by ruin], and there he was, wringing his hands over all that he had spent on that which now lay waste, with its trellises caved in; and he could but say, "Oh, would that I had not attributed divine powers to any but my Sustainer!"
Wealth and children are an 4dornment of this, world's life: but good deeds, the fruit whereof endures forever, are of far greater merit in thy Sustainer's sight, and a far better source of hope.*
And they will be lined up before thy Sustainer, [and He will say:* ] "Now, indeed, you have come unto Us [in a lonely state], even as We created you in the first instances* - although you were wont to assert that We would never 'appoint for you a meeting [with Us]!"
And the record [of everyone's deeds] will be laid open; and thou wilt behold the guilty filled with dread at what [they see] therein; and they will exclaim: "Oh, woe unto us! What a record is this! It leaves out nothing, be it small or great, but takes everything into account!" For they will find all that they ever wrought [now] facing them, and [will know that] thy Sustainer does not wrong anyone.
AND [remember that] when We told the angels, "Prostrate yourselves before Adam,"* they all prostrated themselves, save Iblis: he [too] was one of those invisible beings,* but then he turned away from his Sustainer's command. Will you, then, take him and his cohorts* for (your], masters instead of Me, although they are your foe? How vile an exchange on the evildoers' part!*
for, what is there to keep people from attaining to faith now that guidance has come unto them, and from asking their Sustainer to forgive them their sins - unless it be [their wish] that the fate of the [sinful] people of ancient times should befall them [as well], or that the [ultimate] suffering should befall them in the hereafter?*
And who could be more wicked than he to whom his Sustainer's messages are conveyed and who thereupon turns away from them, forgetting all [the evil] that his hands may have wrought?* Behold, over their hearts have We laid veils which prevent them from grasping the truth, and into their ears, deafness; and though thou call them onto the right path,* they will never allow themselves to be guided.
Yet, [withal,] thy Sustainer is the Truly-Forgiving One, limitless in His grace. Were He to take them [at once] to task for whatever [wrong] they commit, He would indeed bring about their speedy punishment [then and there]:* but nay, they have a time-limit beyond which they shall find no redemption*
and so we desired that their Sustainer grant them in his stead [a child] of greater purity than him, and closer [to them] in loving tenderness.
"And as for that wall, it belonged to two orphan boys [living] in the town, and beneath it was [buried] a treasure belonging to them [by right].* Now their father had been a righteous man, and so thy Sustainer willed it that when they come of age they should bring forth their treasure by thy Sustainer's grace. "And I did not do (any of] this of my own accord:* this is the real meaning of all [those events] that thou wert unable to bear with patience."
He answered: "As for him who does wrong [unto others* ] - him shall we, in time, cause to suffer; and thereupon he shall be referred to his Sustainer, and He will cause him to suffer with unnameable suffering.*
He answered: "That wherein my Sustainer has so securely established me is better [than anything that you could give me];* hence, do but help me with [your labour's] strength, [and] I shall erect a rampart between you and them!
Said [the King]: "This is a mercy from my Sustainer! Yet when the time appointed by my Sustainer* shall come, He will make this [rampart] level with the ground: and my Sustainer's promise always comes true!"*
it is they who have chosen to deny their Sustainer's messages and the truth; that they are deseined to meet Him." Hence, all their [good] deeds come to nought, and no weight shall We assign to them on Resurrection Day.*
SAY: "If all the sea were ink for my Sustainer's words, the sea would indeed be exhausted ere my Sustainer's words are exhausted! And [thus it would be] if we were to add to it sea upon sea."*
Say [O Prophet]: "I am but a mortal man like all of you. It has been revealed unto me that your God is the One and Only God. Hence, whoever looks forward [with hope and awe] to meeting his Sustainer [on Judgment Day], let him do righteous deeds, and let him not ascribe unto anyone or anything a share in the worship due to his Sustainer!"
AN ACCOUNT of the grace which thy Sustainer bestowed upon His servant Zachariah:*
When he called out to his Sustainer in the secrecy of his heart,*
he prayed: "O my Sustainer! Feeble have become my bones, and my head glistens with grey hair. But never yet, O my Lord, has my prayer unto Thee remained unanswered.*
who will be my heir as well as an heir [to the dignity] of the House of Jacob; and make him, O my Sustainer, well-pleasing to Thee!"
[Zachariah] exclaimed: "O my Sustainer! How can I have a son when my wife has always been barren and I have become utterly infirm through old age?"
Answered [the angel]: "Thus. it is; [but] thy 'Sustainer says, `This is easy for Me -even as I have created thee aforetime out of nothing.*
[Zachariah] prayed: "O my Sustainer! Appoint a sign for me!" Said [the angel]: "Thy sign shall be that for full three nights [and days] thou wilt not speak unto men.*
[The angel] answered: "I' am but a messenger of thy Sustainer, [who says,] `I shall bestow upon thee the gift of a son endowed with purity.'"
[The angel] answered: "Thus it is; [but] thy Sustainer says, `This is easy for Me;* and [thou shalt have a son,] so that We might make him a symbol unto mankind and an act of grace from US.* And it was a thing decreed [by God]:
Thereupon [a voice] called out to her from beneath that [palm-tree]:* "Grieve not! Thy Sustainer has provided a rivulet [running] beneath thee;
And [thus it was that Jesus always said]: "Verily, God is my Sustainer as well as your Sustainer; so worship [none but] Him: this (alone] is a straight way."*
[Abraham] replied: "Peace be upon thee! I shall ask my Sustainer to forgive thee: for, behold, He has always been kind unto me.
But I shall withdraw from you all and from whatever you invoke instead of God, and shall invoke my Sustainer [alone]: it may well be that my prayer [for thee] will not remain unanswered by my Sustainer."*
who used to enjoin upon his people prayer and charity,* and found favour in his Sustainer's sight.
AND [the angels say]: "We do not descend [with revelation], again and again, other than by thy Sustainer's command: unto Him belongs all that lies open before us and all that is hidden-from us and all that is in-between.* And never does thy Sustainer forget [anything]
the Sustainer of the heavens and the earth and all that is between them! Worship, then, Him alone, and remain steadfast in His worship! Dost thou know any whose name is worthy to be mentioned side by side with His?"
And so, by thy Sustainer, [on Judgment Day] We shall most certainly bring them forth together with the satanic forces [which impelled them in life]* and then We shall most certainly gather them, on their knees, around hell;
And every one of you will come within sight of it:* this is, with thy Sustainer, a decree that must be fulfilled.
And God endows those who avail themselves of [His] guidance with an ever-deeper consciousness of the right way;* and good deeds, the fruit whereof endures forever, are, in thy Sustainer's sight, of far greater merit [than any worldly goods], and yield far better returns.*
Verily, I am thy Sustainer! Take off, then, thy sandals! Behold, thou art in the twice hallowed valley,*
Said [Moses]: "O my Sustainer! Open up my heart [to Thy light],
The two [brothers] said: "O our Sustainer! Verily, we fear lest he act hastily with regard to us,* or lest he [continue to] transgress all bounds of equity."
Go, then; you two unto him and say, `Behold, we are apostles sent by thy Sustainer: let, then, the children of Israel go with us, and cause them not to suffer [any longer].* We have now come unto thee with a message from thy Sustainer; and [know that His] peace shall be [only] on those who follow [His] guidance:
[But when God's message was conveyed unto Pharaoh,] he said: "Who, now, is this Sustainer of you two, O Moses?"
He replied: "Our Sustainer is He who gives unto every thing [that exists] its true nature and form. and thereupon guides it [towards its fulfilment].*
[Moses] answered: "Knowledge thereof rests with my Sustainer [alone, and is laid down] in His decree;* my Sustainer does not err, and neither does He forget."*
[And so it happened* and down fell the sorcerers, prostrating themselves in adoration,* [and] exclaimed: "We have come to believe in the Sustainer of Moses and Aaron!"
As for us, behold, we have come to believe in our Sustainer, [hoping] that He may forgive us our faults and all that magic unto which thou hast forced us:* for God is the best [to look forward to], and the One who is truly abiding."*
VERILY, as for him who shall appear before his Sustainer [on Judgment Day] lost in sin - his [portion], behold, shall be hell: he will neither die therein nor live;*
He answered: "They are treading in my footsteps* while I have hastened unto Thee, O my Sustainer, so that Thou might be well-pleased [with me]."
Thereupon Moses returned to his people full of wrath and sorrow, [and] exclaimed: "O my people! Did not your Sustainer hold out [many] a goodly promise to you? bid, then, [the fulfilment of] this promise seem to you too long in coming?* Or are you, perchance, determined to see your Sustainer's condemnation fall upon you,* and so you broke your promise to me?"
And, indeed, even before [the return of Moses] had Aaron said unto them: "O .my people! You are but being tempted to evil by this [idol] -for, behold, your [only] Sustainer is the Most Gracious! Follow me, then, and obey my bidding!"*
AND THEY WILL ask thee about [what will happen to] the mountains [when this world comes to an end]. Say, then: "My Sustainer will scatter them far and wide,
[Know,] then, [that) God is sublimely exalted. the Ultimate Sovereign, the Ultimate Truth* and [knowing this,] do not approach the Qur'an in haste,* ere it has been revealed unto thee in full, but [always) say: "O my Sustainer, cause me to grow in knowledge!*
And so the two ate [of the fruit] thereof: and thereupon they became conscious of their nakedness and began to cover themselves with pieced-together leaves from the garden. And [thus] did Adam disobey his Sustainer, and thus did he fall into grievous error.*
Thereafter, [however,) his Sustainer elected him [for His grace], and accepted his repentance, and bestowed His guidance upon him,
[And so, on Resurrection Day, the sinner] will ask: "O my Sustainer! Why hast Thou raised me up blind, whereas [on earth] I was endowed with sight?"
For, thus shall We recompense him who wastes his own self* and does not believe in his Sustainer's messages: and, indeed, the suffering [of such sinners] in the life to come shall be most severe and most enduring!
Now were it not for a decree that has already gone forth from thy Sustainer, setting a term* [for each sinner's repentance], it would inescapably follow [that all who sin must be doomed at once].*
Hence, bear with patience whatever they [who deny the truth] may say, and extol thy Sustainer's limitless glory and praise Him before the rising of the sun and before its setting; and extol His glory, too, during some of the hours of the night as well as during the hours of the day,* so that thou might attain to happiness.
And never turn thine, eyes [with longing] towards whatever splendour of this world's life We may have allowed so many others* to enjoy in order that We might test them thereby: for the sustenance which thy Sustainer provides [for thee] is better and more enduring.*
NOW THEY [who are blind to the truth] are wont to say, "If [Muhammad] would but produce for us a miracle from his Sustainer!* [But] has there not come unto them a clear evidence [of the truth of this divine writ] in what is [to be found] in the earlier scriptures?*
For [thus it is:] had We destroyed them by means of a chastisement ere this [divine writ was revealed], they would indeed [be justified to] say [on Judgment Day]: "O our Sustainer! If only Thou hadst sent an apostle unto us, we would have followed Thy messages rather than be humiliated and disgraced [in the hereafter]!"*
Whenever there comes unto them any new reminder from their Sustainer, they but listen to it with playful amusement,*
Say:* My Sustainer knows whatever is spoken in heaven and on earth; and He alone is all-hearing, all-knowing."
had there been in heaven or on earth* any deities other than God, both [those realms would surely have fallen into ruin! But limitless in His glory is God, enthroned in His awesome almightiness* far] above anything that men may devise by way of definition!*
Say: Who could protect you, by night or by day, from the Most Gracious?"* And yet, from a remembrance of their Sustainer do they stubbornly turn away!
And yet, if but a breath of thy Sustainer's chastisement touches them, they are sure to cry, Oh, woe unto us! Verily, we were evildoers!"
who stand in awe of their Sustainer although He is beyond the reach of human perception,* and who tremble at the thought of the Last Hour.
He answered: Nay, but your [true] Sustainer is the Sustainer of the heavens and the earth - He who has brought them into being: and I am one of those who bear witness to this [truth]!"
AND [remember] Job, when he cried out to his Sustainer, Affliction has befallen me: but Thou art the most merciful of the merciful!"*
AND [thus did We deliver] Zachariah when he cried out unto his Sustainer: O my Sustainer! Leave me not childless! But [even if Thou grant me no bodily heir, I know that] Thou wilt remain when all else has ceased to be!"*
VERILY, [O you who believe in Me,] this community of yours is one single community, since I am the Sustainer of you all: worship, then, Me [alone]!*
Say:* O my Sustainer! Judge Thou in truth!'' - and [say]: ''Our Sustainer is the Most Gracious, the One whose aid is ever to be sought against all your [attempts at] defining [Him]!"*
O men! Be conscious of your Sustainer: for, verily the violent convulsion of the Last Hour will be an awesome thing!
These two contrary kinds of man* have become engrossed in contention about their Sustainer! But [thus it is:] as for those who are bent on denying the truth* garments of fire shall be cut out for them [in the life to come]; burning despair* will be poured over their heads,
All this [is ordained by God]; and if one houours God's sacred commandments, it will redound to his own good in his Sustainer's sight. And all [kinds of] cattle have been made lawful to you [for sacrifice and food], save what is mentioned to you [as forbidden].* Shun, then, [all that God has forbidden and, most of all,] the loathsome evil of idolatrous beliefs and practices;* and shun every word that is untrue,
those who have been driven from their homelands against all right for no other reason than their saying. Our Sustainer is God!" For, if God had not enabled people to defend themselves against one another,* all] monasteries and churches and synagogues and mosques - in [all of] which Gods name is abundantly extolled - would surely have been destroyed [ere now].* And God will most certainly succour him who succours His cause: for, verily, God is most powerful, almighty,
And [so, O Muhammad,] they challenge thee to hasten the coming upon them of [God's] chastisement:* but God never fails to fulfill His promise - and, behold, in thy Sustainer's sight a day is like a thousand years of your reckoning.*
And [God renders Satan's aspersions null and void] so that they who are endowed with [innate] knowledge might know that this [divine writ] is the truth from thy Sustainer, and that they aught believe in it, and that their hearts might humbly submit unto Him. For, behold, God does guide onto a straight way those who have attained to faith
UNTO every community have We appointed [different] ways of worship,* which they ought to observe. Hence, [O believer,] do not let those [who follow ways other than thine] draw thee into disputes on this score,* but summon [them all] unto thy Sustainer: for, behold, thou art indeed on the right way.
O YOU who have attained to faith! Bow down and prostrate yourselves, and worship your Sustainer [alone], and do good, so that you might attain to a happy state!
Said [Noah]: O my Sustainer! Succour me against their accusation of lying!"
And say: 'O my Sustainer! Cause me to reach a destination blessed [by Thee]* for Thou art the best to show man how to reach his [true] destination!' "*
[Whereupon the prophet] would say: O my Sustainer! Succour me against their accusation of lying!"
And, verily, this community of yours is one single community, since I am the Sustainer of you all: remain, then, conscious of Me!*
Verily, [only] they who stand in reverent awe of their Sustainer,
and who believe in their Sustainer's messages,
and who do not ascribe divinity to aught but their Sustainer,
and who give whatever they [have to] give* with their hearts trembling at the thought that unto their Sustainer they must return:
Or dost thou [O Muhammad] ask of them any worldly recompense? But [they ought to know that] recompense from thy Sustainer is best, since He is the best of providers!*
And, indeed, We tested them* through suffering, but they did not abase themselves before their Sustainer; and they will never humble themselves
Say: Who is it that sustains the seven heavens and is enthroned in His awesome almightiness?"*
SAY: O my Sustainer! If it be Thy will to let me witness* [the fulfillment of] whatever they [who blaspheme against Thee] have been promised [to suffer]
do not, O my Sustainer, let me be one of those evildoing folk!"
And say: O my Sustainer! I seek refuge with Thee from the promptings of all evil impulses;*
and I seek refuge with Thee, O my Sustainer, lest they come near unto me!'
[AS FOR THOSE who will not believe in the life to come, they go on lying to themselves]* until, when death approaches any of them, he prays: O my Sustainer! Let me return, let me return [to life],*
They will exclaim: O our Sustainer! Our bad luck has overwhelmed us, and so we went astray!*
O our Sustainer! Cause us to come out of this [suffering] - and then, if ever We revert [to sinning], may we truly be [deemed] evildoers!"
Behold, there were among My servants such as would pray, 'O our Sustainer! We have come to believe [in Thee]; forgive, then, our sins and bestow Thy mercy on us: for Thou art the truest bestower of mercy!'*
[KNOW,] then, [that] God is sublimely exalted, the Ultimate Sovereign, the Ultimate Truth:* there is no deity save Him, the Sustainer, in bountiful almightiness enthroned!*
Hence, he who invokes, side by side with God, any other deity [- a deity] for whose existence he has no evidence - shall but find his reckoning with his Sustainer: [and,] verily, such deniers of the truth will never attain to a happy state!
Hence, [O believer,] say: O my Sustainer! Grant [me] forgiveness and bestow Thy mercy [upon me]: for Thou art the truest bestower of mercy!"
a promise given by thy Sustainer, [always] to be prayed for?"
AND [even] before thee, [O Muhammad,] We never sent as Our message-bearers any but [mortal men] who indeed ate food [like other human beings] and went about in the market places: for [it is thus that] We cause you [human beings] to be a means of testing one another.* Are you* able to endure [this test] with patience? For [remember, O man,] thy Sustainer is truly all-seeing!
But those who do not believe that they are destined to meet Us are wont to say,* Why have no angels been sent down to us?" or, Why do we not see our Sustainer?" Indeed, they are far too proud of themselves, having rebelled [against God's truth] with utter disdain!
AND [on that Day] the Apostle will say:* O my Sustainer! Behold, [some of] my people have come to regard this Qur'an as something [that ought to be] discarded!"*
For so it is that against every prophet We have set up enemies from among those who are lost in sin:* yet none can guide and give succour as thy Sustainer does!
Art thou not aware of thy Sustainer [through His works]? - how He causes the shadow to lengthen [towards the night] when, had He so willed, He could indeed have made it stand still: but then, We have made the sun its guide;
And He it is who out of this [very] water has created man,* and has endowed him with [the consciousness of] descent and marriage-tie:* for thy Sustainer is ever infinite in His power.
And yet, some people* worship, instead of God, things that can neither benefit them nor harm them: thus, he who denies the truth does indeed turn his back on his Sustainer!
Say: For this, no reward do I ask of you [- no reward] other than that he who so wills may unto his Sustainer find a way!"
and who remember their Sustainer far into the night, prostrating themselves and standing;
and who pray: O our Sustainer, avert from us the suffering of hell - for, verily, the suffering caused by it is bound to be a torment dire:
and who, whenever they are reminded of their Sustainer's messages, do not throw themselves upon them [as if] deaf and blind;*
and who pray O our Sustainer! Grant that our spouses and our offspring be a joy to our eyes,* and cause us to be foremost among those who are conscious of Thee!"
SAY [unto those who believe]: No weight or value would my Sustainer attach to you were it not for your faith [in Him]!"* And say unto those who deny the truth:] You have indeed given the lie [to God's message], and in time this [sin] will cleave unto you!"*
But, verily, thy Sustainer - He alone - is almighty, a dispenser of grace!*
HENCE, [remember how it was] when thy Sustainer summoned Moses: Go unto those evil doing people.
He answered: O my Sustainer! Behold, I fear that they will give me the lie,
And go, both of you, unto Pharaoh and say, 'Behold, we bear a message from the Sustainer of all the worlds:
and I fled from you because I feared you. But [since] then my Sustainer has endowed me with the ability to judge [between right and wrong], and has made me one of [His] message-bearers.*
Said Pharaoh: And what [and who] is that 'Sustainer of all the worlds'?''*
[Moses] answered: [He is] the Sustainer of the heavens and the earth and all that is between them: if you would but [allow yourselves to] be convinced!"*
[And Moses] continued: [He is] your Sustainer, [too,] as well as the Sustainer of your forefathers of old!"
[But Moses] went on: [He of whom I speak is] the Sustainer of the east and the west and of all that is between the two"-* as you would know] if you would but use your reason!"
[and] exclaimed: We have come to believe in the Sustainer of all the worlds,
the Sustainer of Moses and Aaron!"
They answered: No harm [canst thou do to us]: verily, unto our Sustainer do we turn!
Behold, we [but] ardently desire that our Sustainer forgive us our faults in return for our having been foremost among the believers!"
He replied: Nay indeed! My Sustainer is with me, [and] He will guide me!"
And yet, verily, thy Sustainer - He alone - is almighty, a dispenser of grace!*
Now [as for me, I know that,] verily, these [false deities] are my enemies, [and that none is my helper] save the Sustainer of all the worlds,
O my Sustainer! Endow me with the ability to judge [between right and wrong], and make me one with the righteous,
when we deemed you [false deities] equal to the Sustainer of all the worlds
But, verily, thy Sustainer - He alone - is almighty, a dispenser of grace!*
And no reward whatever do I ask of you for it: my reward rests with none but the Sustainer of all the worlds.
Their reckoning rests with none but my Sustainer: if you could but understand [this]!*
[Whereupon] he prayed: O my Sustainer! Behold, my people have given me the lie:
But, verily, thy Sustainer - He alone - is almighty, a dispenser of grace
And no reward whatever do I ask of you for it: my reward rests with none but the Sustainer of all the worlds.
But, verily, thy Sustainer - He alone - is almighty, a dispenser of grace!
And no reward whatever do I ask of you for it: my reward rests with none but the Sustainer of all the worlds.
But, verily, thy Sustainer - He alone is almighty, a dispenser of grace!
And no reward whatever do I ask of you for it: my reward rests with none but the Sustainer of all the worlds.
keeping yourselves aloof from all the [lawful] spouses whom your Sustainer has created for you? Nay, but you are people who transgress all bounds of what is right!"
[And then he prayed:] O my Sustainer! Save me and my household from all that they are doing!"
But, verily, thy Sustainer - He alone - is almighty, a dispenser of grace!
And no reward whatever do I ask of you for it: my reward rests with none but the Sustainer of all the worlds.
Answered [Shu'ayb]: My Sustainer knows fully well what you are doing."
But, verily, thy Sustainer - He alone - is almighty, a dispenser of grace!*
Now, behold, this [divine writ] has indeed been bestowed from on high by the Sustainer of all the worlds:*
But when he came close to it, a call was sounded: Blessed are all who are within [reach of] this fire, and all who are near it!* And limitless in His glory is God, the Sustainer of all the worlds!"
Thereupon [Solomon] smiled joyously at her words, and said: O my Sustainer! Inspire me so that I may forever be grateful for those blessings of Thine with which Thou hast graced me and my parents,* and that I may do what is right [in a manner] that will please Thee; and include me, by Thy grace, among Thy righteous servants!"
God, save whom there is no deity - the Sustainer, in awesome almightiness enthroned!"*
Answered he who was illumined by revelation:* [Nay,] as for me - I shall bring it to thee ere the twinkling of thy eye ceases!"* And when he saw it truly before him, he exclaimed:* This is [an outcome] of my Sustainer's bounty, to test me as to whether I am grateful or ungrateful!* However, he who is grateful [to God] is but grateful for his own good; and he who is ungrateful [should know that], verily, my Sustainer is self-sufficient, most generous in giving!"
[After a while] she was told: Enter this court!" - but when she saw it, she thought that it was a fathomless expanse of water, and she bared her legs.* Said he: Behold, it is [but] a court smoothly paved with glass!"* Cried she: O my Sustainer! I have been sinning against myself thy worshipping aught but Thee]: but [now] I have surrendered myself, with Solomon, unto the Sustainer of all the worlds!"
Now, verily, thy Sustainer is indeed limitless in His bounty unto men - but most of them are bereft of gratitude.
But, verily, thy Sustainer knows all that their hearts conceal as well as all that they bring into the open:
Verily, [O believer,] thy Sustainer will judge between them in His wisdom - for He alone is almighty, all-knowing.
[SAY, O Muhammad:] I have been bidden to worship the Sustainer of this City * Him who has made it sacred, and unto whom all things belong: and I have been bidden to be of those who surrender themselves to Him,
And say: All praise is due to God! In time He will make you see [the truth of] His messages, and then you shall know them [for what they are]." And thy Sustainer is not unmindful of whatever you all may do.
[And] he prayed: O my Sustainer! Verily, I have sinned against myself! Grant me, then, Thy forgiveness!" And He forgave him - for, verily, He alone is truly forgiving, a dispenser of grace.
Said he: O my Sustainer! [I vow] by all the blessings which Thou hast bestowed on me: Nevermore shall I aid such as are lost in sin!"*
So he went forth from thence, looking fearfully about him, and prayed: O my Sustainer! Save me from all evildoing folk!"
And as he turned his face towards Madyan, he said [to himself]: It may well be that my Sustainer will [thus] guide me onto the right path"*
So he watered [their flock] for them: and when he withdrew into the shade and prayed: O my Sustainer! Verily, in dire need am I of any good which Thou mayest bestow upon me!"
But when he came close to it, a call was sounded from the right-side bank of the valley, out of the tree [burning] on blessed ground:* O Moses! Verily, I am God, the Sustainer of all the worlds!"
[And now] put thy hand into thy bosom: it will come forth [shining] white, without blemish.* And [henceforth] hold thine arm close to thyself, free of all fear.* These, then, shall be the two signs [of thy bearing a message] from thy Sustainer* unto Pharaoh and his great ones - for, behold, they are people depraved!"
Said [Moses] O my Sustainer! I have slain one of them, and so I fear that they will slay me.*
And Moses replied: My Sustainer knows best as to who comes with guidance from Him, and to whom the future belongs!* Verily, never will evildoers attain to a happy state!"
And neither wert thou present on the slope of Mount Sinai when We called out [to Moses]:* but [thou, too, art sent] as an act of thy Sustainer's grace, to warn people to whom no warner has come before thee, so that they might bethink themselves [of Us];
and [We have sent thee] lest they say [on Judgment Day], when disaster befalls them as an outcome of what their own hands have wrought, O our Sustainer, if only Thou had sent an apostle unto us, we would have followed Thy messages, and would have been among those who believe!"
and whenever it is [clearly] conveyed unto them, they [are bound to] profess, We have come to believe in it, for, behold, it is the truth from our Sustainer - and, verily, even before this have we surrendered ourselves unto Him!"
Yet, withal, thy Sustainer would never destroy a community without having [first] raised in its midst an apostle who would convey unto them Our messages;* and never would We destroy a community unless its people are wont to do wrong [to one another].*
[whereupon] they against whom the word [of truth] shall thus stand revealed* will exclaim: O our Sustainer! Those whom we caused to err so grievously, we but caused to err as we ourselves had been erring.* We [now] disavow them before Thee: it was not us that they worshipped!"*
AND [thus it is:] thy Sustainer creates whatever He wills; and He chooses [for mankind] whatever is best for them.* Limitless is God in His glory, and sublimely exalted above anything to which they may ascribe a share in His divinity!
And thy Sustainer knows all that their hearts conceal as well as all that they bring into the open:
VERILY, [O believer,] He who has laid down this Qur'an in plain terms, making it binding on thee,* will assuredly bring thee back [from death] to a life renewed.* Say [unto those who reject the truth]: My Sustainer knows best, as to who is right-guided* and who is obviously lost in error!"
Now [as for thyself, O believer,] thou couldst never foresee* that this divine writ would [one day] be offered to thee: but [it did come to thee] by thy Sustainer's grace. Hence, never uphold those who deny the truth [of divine guidance],
and never let them turn thee away from God's messages after they have been bestowed upon thee from on high: instead* summon [all men] to thy Sustainer. And never be of those who ascribe divinity to aught but Him,
Now there is among men many a one who says [of himself and of others like him], We do believe in God" - but whenever he is made to suffer in God's cause, he thinks that persecution at the hands of man is as [much to be feared, or even more than,] God's chastisement;* whereas, if succour from thy Sustainer comes [to those who truly believe]* he is sure to say. Behold, we have always been with you!" Is not God fully aware of what is in the hearts of all creatures?
Thereupon [his brother's son] Lot came to believe in him and said: Verily, I [too] shall forsake the domain of evil [and turn] to my Sustainer: for, verily, He alone is almighty, truly wise!"*
[And] he prayed: O my Sustainer! Succour Thou me against these people who spread corruption!"
And yet they say, Why have no miraculous signs ever been bestowed upon him from on high by his Sustainer?" Say: Miracles are in the power of God alone;* and as for me - I am but a plain warner."
those who are patient in adversity and in their Sustainer place their trust!
Have they never learned to think for themselves?* God has not created the heavens and the earth and all that is between them without [an inner] truth and a term set [by Him]:* and yet, behold, there are many people who stubbornly deny the truth that they are destined to meet their Sustainer!
NOW [thus it is:] when affliction befalls men, they cry out unto their Sustainer, turning unto Him [for help]; but as soon as He lets them taste of His grace, lo! some of them [begin to] ascribe to other powers a share in their Sustainer's divinity,*
It is they who follow the guidance [that comes to them] from their Sustainer; and it is they, they who shall attain to a happy state!
O MEN! Be conscious of your Sustainer, and stand in awe of the Day on which no parent will be of any avail to his child, nor a child will in the least avail his parent! Verily, God's promise [of resurrection] is true indeed: let not, then, the life of this world deludes you, and let not [your own] deceptive thoughts about God delude you!*
The bestowal from on high of this divine writ issues, beyond any doubt, from the Sustainer of all the worlds:
and yet,* they [who are bent on denying the truth] assert, [Muhammad] has invented it!" Nay, but it is the truth from thy Sustainer, enabling thee to warn [this] people to whom no warner has come before thee, so that they might follow the right path.
For, [many are] they [who] say, What! After we have been [dead and] lost in the earth, shall we indeed be [restored to life] in a new act of creation?" Nay, but [by saying this] they deny the truth that they are destined to meet their Sustainer!*
Say: [One day,] the angel of death who has been given charge of you will gather you, and then unto your Sustainer you will be brought back."
If thou couldst but see [how it will be on Judgment Day], when those who are lost in sin will hang their heads before their Sustainer, [saying:] O our Sustainer! [Now] we have seen, and we have heard! Return us, then, [to our earthly life] that we may do good deeds: for [now], behold, we are certain [of the truth]!"
ONLY THEY [truly] believe in Our messages who, whenever they are conveyed to them, fall down, prostrating themselves in adoration, and extol their Sustainer's limitless glory and praise; and who are never filled with false pride;
[and] who are impelled to rise* from their beds [at night] to call out to their Sustainer in fear and hope; and who spend on others out of what We provide for them as sustenance.
And who could be more wicked than he to whom his Sustainer's messages are conveyed and who thereupon turns away from them? Verily, We shall inflict Our retribution on those who are [thus] lost in sin!
VERILY, it is God alone who will decide between men* on Resurrection Day with regard to all on which they were wont to differ.*
And follow [but] that which comes unto thee through revelation from thy Sustainer:* for God is truly aware of all that you do, [O men].
And they will say: O our Sustainer! Behold, we paid heed unto our leaders and our great men, and it is they who have led us astray from the right path!
O our Sustainer! Give them double suffering, and banish them utterly from Thy grace!"*
And yet, they who are bent on denying the truth assert, Never will the Last Hour come upon us!"* Say: Nay, by my Sustainer! By Him who knows all that is beyond the reach of a created being's perception: it will most certainly come upon you!" Not an atom's weight [of whatever there is] in the heavens or on earth escapes His knowledge; and neither is there anything smaller than that, or larger, but is recorded in [His] clear decree,
NOW THEY who are endowed with [innate] knowledge are well aware that whatever has been bestowed upon thee from on high by thy Sustainer is indeed the truth, and that it guides onto the way that leads to the Almighty, the One to whom all praise is due!
AND UNTO Solomon [We made subservient] the wind: its morning course [covered the distance of] a month's journey, and its evening course, a month's journey.* And We caused a fountain of molten copper to flow at his behest;* and [even] among the invisible beings there were some that had [been constrained] to labour for him by his Sustainer's leave* and whichever of them deviated from Our command, him would We let taste suffering through a blazing flame -:
INDEED, in [the luxuriant beauty of] their homeland, the people of Sheba had an evidence [of God's grace]* two [vast expanses of] gardens, to the right and to the left, [calling out to them, as it were:] Eat of what your Sustainer has provided for you, and render thanks unto Him: a land most goodly, and a Sustainer much-forgiving!"
But now they would say, Long has our Sustainer made the distance between our journey-