سورة الأنبياء   

Surah Name: Al-Anbya Meaning: The Prophets-AS

  • Revealed at Makkah
  • Total Number of Rukū / Sections 7
  • Total Number of Āyāt / Parts 112
  • Sūrah / Chapter number 21
  • Rukū / Section 3 contains Āyāt / Parts 12
  • Siparah/ Volume 17


أَوَلَمْ يَرَ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا أَنَّ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضَ كَانَتَا رَتْقًا فَفَتَقْنَاهُمَا وَجَعَلْنَا مِنَ الْمَاء كُلَّ شَيْءٍ حَيٍّ أَفَلَا يُؤْمِنُونَ

Awalam yara allatheena kafaroo anna a(l)ssamawati wa(a)larda kanata ratqan fafataqnahuma wajaAAalna mina almai kulla shayin hayyin afala yuminoon(a)

Have not those who disbelieved considered that the heavens and the earth were closed up, and then We-SWT rent them? And We-SWT have made of water everything living. Will they not then believe?


وَجَعَلْنَا فِي الْأَرْضِ رَوَاسِيَ أَن تَمِيدَ بِهِمْ وَجَعَلْنَا فِيهَا فِجَاجًا سُبُلًا لَعَلَّهُمْ يَهْتَدُونَ

WajaAAalna fee alardi rawasiya an tameeda bihim wajaAAalna feeha fijajan subulan laAAallahum yahtadoon(a)

And We-SWT have placed in the earth firm mountains lest it should move away with them, and We-SWT placed therein passages for paths, that perhaps they may be guided.


وَجَعَلْنَا السَّمَاء سَقْفًا مَّحْفُوظًا وَهُمْ عَنْ آيَاتِهَا مُعْرِضُونَ

WajaAAalna a(l)ssamaa saqfan mahfoothan wahum AAan ayatiha muAAridoon(a)

And We-SWT have made the heaven a roof, safe; and from the Signs thereof they are averters.


وَهُوَ الَّذِي خَلَقَ اللَّيْلَ وَالنَّهَارَ وَالشَّمْسَ وَالْقَمَرَ كُلٌّ فِي فَلَكٍ يَسْبَحُونَ

Wahuwa allathee khalaqa allayla wa(al)nnahara wa(al)shshamsa waalqamara kullun fee falakin yasbahoon(a)

And He-SWT it is Who-SWT has created the night and the day, the sun and the moon, each in an orbit floating.


وَمَا جَعَلْنَا لِبَشَرٍ مِّن قَبْلِكَ الْخُلْدَ أَفَإِن مِّتَّ فَهُمُ الْخَالِدُونَ

Wama jaAAalna libasharin min qablika alkhulda afain mitta fahumu alkhalidoon(a)

And We-SWT have not, before you, granted immortality to any human being. so if you pass away, are they to be immortals?


كُلُّ نَفْسٍ ذَائِقَةُ الْمَوْتِ وَنَبْلُوكُم بِالشَّرِّ وَالْخَيْرِ فِتْنَةً وَإِلَيْنَا تُرْجَعُونَ

Kullu nafsin thaiqatu almawti wanablookum bi(al)shsharri wa(a)lkhayri fitnatan wailayna turjaAAoona

Everyone is going to taste of death, and We-SWT shall try you with evil and good as a temptation, and to Us you will be returned.


وَإِذَا رَآكَ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا إِن يَتَّخِذُونَكَ إِلَّا هُزُوًا أَهَذَا الَّذِي يَذْكُرُ آلِهَتَكُمْ وَهُم بِذِكْرِ الرَّحْمَنِ هُمْ كَافِرُونَ

Waitha raaka allatheena kafaroo in yattakhithoonaka illa huzuwan ahatha allathee yathkuru alihatakum wahum bithikri a(l)rrahmani hum kafiroon(a)

And when the infidels look at you, they only take you up for mockery: Is this the one who mentions your gods with contempt? While in the mention of the Compassionate they are themselves blasphemers.


خُلِقَ الْإِنسَانُ مِنْ عَجَلٍ سَأُرِيكُمْ آيَاتِي فَلَا تَسْتَعْجِلُونِ

Khuliqa alinsanu min AAajalin saoreekum ayatee fala tastaAAjiloon(a)

Man was created of haste. I-SWT shall surely show you My-SWT Signs, so ask Me-SWT not to hasten.


وَيَقُولُونَ مَتَى هَذَا الْوَعْدُ إِن كُنتُمْ صَادِقِينَ

Wayaqooloona mata hatha alwaAAdu in kuntum sadiqeen(a)

And they say: When is this torment coming, if you say the truth?


لَوْ يَعْلَمُ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا حِينَ لَا يَكُفُّونَ عَن وُجُوهِهِمُ النَّارَ وَلَا عَن ظُهُورِهِمْ وَلَا هُمْ يُنصَرُونَ

Law yaAAlamu allatheena kafaroo heena la yakuffoona AAan wujoohihimu a(l)nnara wala Aaan thuhoorihim wala hum yunsaroon(a)

If the disbelievers only know of the time when, they shall not be able to ward off the Fire from their faces nor from their backs nor shall they be succoured!


بَلْ تَأْتِيهِم بَغْتَةً فَتَبْهَتُهُمْ فَلَا يَسْتَطِيعُونَ رَدَّهَا وَلَا هُمْ يُنظَرُونَ

Bal tateehim baghtatan fatabhatuhum fala yastateeAAoona raddaha wala hum yuntharoon(a)

Aye! It would come upon them on a sudden and will dumbfound them, they shall not be able to avert it, nor shall they be respited.


وَلَقَدِ اسْتُهْزِئَ بِرُسُلٍ مِّن قَبْلِكَ فَحَاقَ بِالَّذِينَ سَخِرُوا مِنْهُم مَّا كَانُوا بِهِ يَسْتَهْزِؤُون

Walaqadi istuhzia birusulin min qablika fahaqa bi(a)llatheena sakhiroo minhum ma kanoo bihi yastahzioon(a)

And assuredly mocked were the Messengers before you, then there surrounded the scoffers what they had been mocking at.


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

These Ayat assert that initially the heavens and the earth were closed up, a fact that modern science duly endorses, It is known today that when the earth came into existence, there were no rains powering down from the heaven and no signs of life on it, the cycle of life had not yet started. And when the Munificent Provider chose to make the world inhabitable. He-SWT inaugurated the two, and allowed the system of life to flow. The energy and light from the sun and the blowing winds began to perform their functions. The clouds poured down, the soil began to host myriads of plantation, yet all this was not by chance or accident. It is indeed a Divine System with water as the essential ingredient of life, be it animalistic or botanical. No one can alter this elementary fact even if he wants to. Animal life has been created out of a drop of fluid, while the seeds of the plants also sprout in dampness. And water is the most important ingredient of food consumed by human beings and animals as well as the plants. It is indeed strange that infidels deny the One Whose-SWT Omnipotence is so manifest.


It is He-SWT Who-SWT laid the burden of the mountains on some parts of earth to give it the required stability. These mountains serve many useful purposes like keeping the earth steady, serving as pathways and path finders and providing landmarks for determining the travel routes. Had the whole surface of earth been a plane or a desert, man would have remained wandering and lost. These heights and depressions guide the human beings in determining the routes of travel. Moreover He-SWT made the heavens a secure roof over this terrestrial system; neither hackneyed nor damaged Just as a roof provides protection to the entire building, this heavenly roof provides protection to the entire system of the universe, while the center for controlling this system is also located in there.


Ironically these infidels are oblivious of such significant signs. It is He-SWT Who has created days and nights, the sun and the moon, gliding in their orbits. In other words. He-SWT is so Powerful and Knowing that by making the cycle of days and nights He-SWT has created the ways of existence, and by threading the sun, the moon, the stars and the planets together into a system He-SWT has woven the fabric of life. Every object is constantly on the move in a predetermined orbit and speed And this movement causes the cycle of days and nights, as well as the climates and is the source of all animation He-SWT is so Powerful that He-SWT does not allow any variation in the movement or functioning of these heavenly bodies, be it their disposition, temperature or radiance. However, whenever He-SWT may choose. He-SWT will create a minor clog somewhere to topple the entire system. And all this will not be a futile exercise; rather, everyone will have to bear the brunt of its consequences.


The infidels flutter that the Holy Prophet-SW will not live on, he will die eventually and the matter would be closed forever. But this notion is certainly misplaced for they too will die. Can death resolve or end the matter? Certainly not. So the best thing to do is to prepare for it. And indeed death is nothing but a state of life through which every living soul has to pass.


What is death?

Here the terrestrial creation is addressed, so the question whether the celestial beings, the angels or the creation in Jannah will also experience death is not the issue. Some scholars opine that for a moment death would prevail over everyone while others exempt the latter from it. As for human life Allaah-SWT reveals that death does not mark its end, rather n is a change in its state. Ruh is a subtle body made of light, which provides the physical body a life line or a link, Once this link is terminated, the state is called death. But this death again neither denotes the extinction of Ruh, nor its disassociation from the components of the body. However, the link between tlie Ruh and the body, which sustained the earthly existence ends. This is a general rule; for there is a difference in the death of a believer and a non believer and a striking difference in the death of the former and a martyr. The Ruh of a martyr maintains such a strong link with the body that Allaah-SWT forbids calling him as dead. The link maintained by the Arwah of the Prophets-AS is even stronger, rightfully termed as  ‘Hayat an Nabi' (Life of the Prophet-AS) whereby death does not affect life but only acts as a source of transition from this mortal world to the eternal abode. This is why the Quranic injunction "every soul must taste death" does not denote extinction rather a change in its state. The associated distress is natural, though the servants ofAllah-SWT derive pleasure out of it. For them it means admission into the Court of the Beloved, and a freedom from the shackles of life; ushering in a singular pleasure and making the bitterness of death palatable. In contrast wasting life in pursuit of worldly pleasures is certainly unwise, for every worldly experience, be it comfort or distress is essentially a trial. A person in distress is tried whether he puts his trust inAllah-SWT or proceeds to others while the one in comforts is tested whether he stands fast on obedience or heads for destruction by his arrogance. And everyone has to eventually return to Allah-SWT through the door of death.


The infidels deride the Holy Prophet-SW all the time and criticize him for calling their idols false and forbidding idol worship. In other words, they label him for not believing in their idols while they deny and refuse to remember Allah-SWT , the Most Merciful, Whose countless bounties they enjoy. So it is they who are reproachable, yet they sit on judgement over the Holy Prophet-SW in haste without even pondering over the facts.


Haste is never Positive

Haste is natural to mankind The treatment for all weaknesses in human temperament is faith in Allah-SWT while the infidels are deprived of it. However, the Holy Prophet-SW must not be impatient as Allah-SWT will show him manifest signs to draw a line between the truth and the falsehood. This promise was fulfilled with the victory of Islam at Badr and Uhad and the Conquest of Makkah.


The infidels also ask the Holy Prophet-SW that if he was true, where was the Promised Hour ? It does not mean that whenever someone denies him, the Day of Judgement should commence. Rather every event will inevitably take place at a time preordained. How ignorant indeed are the deniers? If only they could know that the sequel to denial is the inferno of Hell. It will incinerate their lovely faces and delicate bodies and they will neither find strength to drive off the flames, nor any helpers. And it will occur suddenly when they shall be totally absorbed in temporal business and preoccupied with their families They shall be instantly seized by death, revealing the Akhirah before them. They will stand dumbfounded, for neither will they be able to avert its woes nor will there be any respite left for action, as the time to repent would have gone past.


This ordeal is not only confined to the Holy Prophet-SW but Prophets-AS preceding in time also faced the same. The history of bygone nations is witness to the fact that those who mocked at the Prophets-AS, their mockery boomeranged on them with such force that they were annihilated to a symbol of admonition for all times to come. So if these infidels persist, history shall repeat itself. This indeed is the Law of Nature!