سورة النحل   

Surah Name: An-Nahl Meaning: The Bee

  • Revealed at Makkah
  • This Surah, also revealed in Makkah, carries on the discussion initiated in the preceding Surah, extending it to the evidence or the inevitability of the Day of Judgement. It also presents the various creations of Allah-SWT as testimony to His-SWT Unity: amongst them the honeybee has been especially mentioned. This is why the Surah is named An-Nahl.
  • Total Number of Rukū / Sections 16
  • Total Number of Āyāt / Parts 128
  • Sūrah / Chapter number 16
  • Rukū / Section 1 contains Āyāt / Parts 9
  • Siparah/ Volume 14


أَتَى أَمْرُ اللّهِ فَلاَ تَسْتَعْجِلُوهُ سُبْحَانَهُ وَتَعَالَى عَمَّا يُشْرِكُونَ

Ata amru Allahi fala tastaAAjiloohu subhanahu wataAAala AAamma yushrikoon(a)

The affair of Allaah-SWT comes; so do not seek to hasten it. Hallowed be He-SWT and Exalted above what they associate.


يُنَزِّلُ الْمَلآئِكَةَ بِالْرُّوحِ مِنْ أَمْرِهِ عَلَى مَن يَشَاء مِنْ عِبَادِهِ أَنْ أَنذِرُواْ أَنَّهُ لاَ إِلَـهَ إِلاَّ أَنَاْ فَاتَّقُونِ

Yunazzilu almalaikata bi(al)rroohi min amrihi AAala man yashao min AAibadihi an anthiroo annahu la ilaha illa ana fa(i)ttaqoon(i)

He-SWT sends down the angels with the Spirit by His-SWT Command upon whosoever of His-SWT bondsmen He-SWT wills: warn that there is no god but I,-SWT so fear Me-SWT .


خَلَقَ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالأَرْضَ بِالْحَقِّ تَعَالَى عَمَّا يُشْرِكُونَ

Khalaqa a(l)ssamawati wa(a)larda bi(a)lhaqqi taAAala AAamma yushrikoon(a)

He-SWT has created the heavens and the earth with a purpose. Exalted is He-SWT above what they associate.


خَلَقَ الإِنسَانَ مِن نُّطْفَةٍ فَإِذَا هُوَ خَصِيمٌ مُّبِينٌ

Khalaqa alinsana min nutfatin faitha huwa khaseemun mubeen(un)

He-SWT has created man from a drop, and lo! He-SWT is a disputant open.


وَالأَنْعَامَ خَلَقَهَا لَكُمْ فِيهَا دِفْءٌ وَمَنَافِعُ وَمِنْهَا تَأْكُلُونَ

Wa(a)lanAAama khalaqaha lakum feeha difon wamanafiAAu waminha takuloon(a)

And the cattle! He-SWT has created them. For you in them there is warmth and other profits and of them you eat.


وَلَكُمْ فِيهَا جَمَالٌ حِينَ تُرِيحُونَ وَحِينَ تَسْرَحُونَ

Walakum feeha jamalun heena tureehoona waheena tasrahoon(a)

And for you there is a beauty in them as you drive them at the eventide and as you drive them out to pasture.


وَتَحْمِلُ أَثْقَالَكُمْ إِلَى بَلَدٍ لَّمْ تَكُونُواْ بَالِغِيهِ إِلاَّ بِشِقِّ الأَنفُسِ إِنَّ رَبَّكُمْ لَرَؤُوفٌ رَّحِيمٌ

Watahmilu athqalakum ila baladin lam takoonoo baligheehi illa bishiqqi alanfusi inna rabbakum laraoofun raheem(un)

And they bear your loads to a city which you could not reach except with great trouble to yourselves: verily your Rabb-SWT is Kind, Merciful.


وَالْخَيْلَ وَالْبِغَالَ وَالْحَمِيرَ لِتَرْكَبُوهَا وَزِينَةً وَيَخْلُقُ مَا لاَ تَعْلَمُونَ

Wa(a)lkhayla wa(a)lbighala wa(a)lhameera litarkabooha wazeenatan wayakhluqu mala taAAlamoon(a)

And He-SWT has created horses and mules and asses that you may ride them, and as an adornment; and he creates what you do not know.


وَعَلَى اللّهِ قَصْدُ السَّبِيلِ وَمِنْهَا جَآئِرٌ وَلَوْ شَاء لَهَدَاكُمْ أَجْمَعِينَ

WaAAala Allahi qasdu a(l)ssabeeli waminha jairun walaw shaa lahadakum ajmaAAeen(a)

And upon Allaah-SWT is the direction of the way, and of that is some crooked, and had He-SWT willed, He-SWT would have guided you all.


In The Name of Allah-SWT the Most Gracious, The Most Merciful

The Makkans, in an attempt to refute the possibility of the Doom, would often comment mockingly: 'Where is the Doom against which we are cautioned everyday?' Allaah-SWT declares that they need not be anxious, for His-SWT Decree has come to pass. Indeed, within a short span of time the Makkans were repeatedly defeated and humiliated at the hands of the believers. Many of them were killed while many taken captives. And when Makkah fell to the believers, all of the Makkans became slaves but were freed due to the clemency of the Holy Prophet-SW. Keeping in view the material resources, this could never have been thought of. Similarly, if viewed with reference to the life span of earth, the Final Day is not far away, as Allah-SWT's last Prophet-SW  and the last Book have already arrived. Now the land is inhabited by the last Ummah which will not be followed by any new community. So now is the turn of the Judgement Day. Therefore, it is announced that while Allaah-SWT ’s Grasp hovers over their heads, these infidels must not make haste for it. They should rather avail the given respite. When Allah-SWT, Who-SWT is Exalted and above any shortcomings has pronounced the advent of the Day, it is bound to come. The Words of Allaah-SWT are true. No one can claim any partnership in His-SWT Powers, nor can anyone claim to be equal whereby he can influence His-SWT Decisions. They used to object that they were people of dignity, honour and experience and could not possibly accept a youth born and raised before their very eyes as their leader, while people had always followed the elderly. Let them know that Allaah-SWT may confer leadership upon whoever He-SWT may please.


Age and Leadership

The ability to lead is not determined by age but by the knowledge blessed by Allaah-SWT . And it is by His-SWT Choice as to whom He-SWT selects for Prophethood and Messengership. In the same way Wilayah is not determined by age and it is not essential that only an elderly person can be an accomplished Wali. Rather it is Allaah-SWT ’s Light which He-SWT may instill in any bosom He-SWT may please. Whenever Allaah-SWT blessed a Prophet-AS with His-SWT Revelation, the first Message conveyed by him to the people was the Unity of Allaah-SWT . The Prophets-AS and Messengers-AS approximately 124000 in number, were all men of exemplary characters and wisdom raised at different places in various times. Is it not amazing that inspite of the difference in their social and geographical conditions they all emphasised upon and invited towards two concepts. Firstly, the Unity of Allah-SWT, that He-SWT Alone is worthy of worship. Secondly, abstinence from His-SWT disobedience, fearing His-SWT Reckoning. Is it not logically impossible for so many people to agree on a lie? This consensus itself is a very great evidence on His-SWT Unity. The partners ascribed to Allaah-SWT by these infidels are a creation themselves, whereas He-SWT is the Creator of the universe and every thing therein and has imbedded this system with abundant wisdom. How can a creation be partners with the Creator? So Allaah-SWT is pure of all that these infidels fabricate. His-SWT Omnipotence is such that He-SWT has made a drop of foul fluid the seed of mankind. And it is this seed which He-SWT fashions and develops into a masterpiece, that is, a human being. Is it then not strange that this creation dares to argue in His-SWT Being and in His-SWT Attributes? In no way does it befit a human being!


It is He-SWT Who-SWT  has created the cattle to serve mankind and they benefit from the furs, hides and even the bones of these animals. Some of these animals are the stock-in-trade for people while others are a source of food. Besides, they are also a source of pride and satisfaction for the owner, when taken out for grazing in the morning and returning home thereafter. Even in the contemporary modern world man is as much dependant on cattle and other natural creations as the Arabs were in those days. Today, farming is as lucrative and honourable a business as it was in primitive times.


Man uses some of these animals to carry his loads from one place to another, particularly in difficult terrain. Indeed your Rabb-SWT is extremely Kind and has created horses, mules and asses for you to ride on and traverse all types of routes. Not only this; but you are also unaware of the means of transportation. He-SWT has planned to create for you in the future. This prophecy of the Quran includes all the inventions made in this field todate and all those yet to come. An invention is nothing but various substances combined through various processes, the knowledge of which is given by the Most Merciful Himself-SWT . And all the reasoning so far given highlights the one and only straight path of Allah-SWT's obedience. Yet people opt for crooked ways rather than His-SWT Path. Had He-SWT willed He-SWT could have forced everyone to follow the right track, but this was against His-SWT Wisdom. After showing the straight path, He-SWT left it to the individual to follow or reject it.