سورة المائدة   

Surah Name: Al-Ma'idah Meaning:The Table Spread

  • Revealed at Madinah
  • Completion and Perfection of Islam as Deen (way of life) declared in this Surah.

    With reference to its revelation, it is amongst those Surahs, which were revealed at the end. Part of it was also revealed on the eve of the last Hajj of the Holy Prophet-SW, after which he-SW lived for only about eighty days. Certain Sections were revealed at the time of the Conquest of Makkah, while some on journey to Hudaibiyah. Whereas Surah An-Nisa' discusses mutual relations, dealings and the rights and duties, this Surah lays further emphasis on practising them. The believers are being specifically instructed: "Fulfill your undertakings."

  • Total Number of Rukū / Sections 16
  • Total Number of Āyāt / Parts 120
  • Sūrah / Chapter number 5
  • Rukū / Section 6 contains Āyāt / Parts 9
  • Siparah/ Volume 6 & 7


يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ اتَّقُواْ اللّهَ وَابْتَغُواْ إِلَيهِ الْوَسِيلَةَ وَجَاهِدُواْ فِي سَبِيلِهِ لَعَلَّكُمْ تُفْلِحُونَ

Ya ayyuha allatheena amanoo ittaqoo Allaha wa(i) (a) btaghoo ilayhi alwaseelata wajahidoo fee sabeelihi laAAallakum tuflihoon

O’ you who believe; fear Allah-SWT and seek approach to Him-SWT . And strive hard in His-SWT Way that haply you may thrive.


إِنَّ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُواْ لَوْ أَنَّ لَهُم مَّا فِي الأَرْضِ جَمِيعًا وَمِثْلَهُ مَعَهُ لِيَفْتَدُواْ بِهِ مِنْ عَذَابِ يَوْمِ الْقِيَامَةِ مَا تُقُبِّلَ مِنْهُمْ وَلَهُمْ عَذَابٌ أَلِيمٌ

Inna allatheena kafaroo law anna lahum ma fee alardi jameeAAan wamithlahu maAAahu liyaftadoo bihi min AAathabi yawmi alqiyamati ma tuqubbila minhum walahum AAathabun aleem(un)

Surely those who have disbelieved, if they possessed all that is in the earth and with it as much again to ransom themselves thereby from the torment on the Day of Judgement, it shall not be accepted of them, and theirs shall be a torment afflictive.


يُرِيدُونَ أَن يَخْرُجُواْ مِنَ النَّارِ وَمَا هُم بِخَارِجِينَ مِنْهَا وَلَهُمْ عَذَابٌ مُّقِيمٌ

Yureedoona an yakhrujoo mina a(l)nnari wama hum bikharijeena minha walahum AAathabun muqeem(un)

They will long to escape from the Fire, but they shall not be able to escape from it, and theirs shall be a torment lasting.


وَالسَّارِقُ وَالسَّارِقَةُ فَاقْطَعُواْ أَيْدِيَهُمَا جَزَاء بِمَا كَسَبَا نَكَالاً مِّنَ اللّهِ وَاللّهُ عَزِيزٌ حَكِيمٌ

Wa(al)ssariqu wa(al)ssariqatu fa(i)qtaAAoo aydiyahuma jazaan bima kasaba nakalan mina Allahi wa(A)llahu AAazeezun hakeem(un)

As for the man-thief and the woman-thief, cut off their hands as a recompense for what they have earned a deterrent punishment from Allah-SWT : and Allah-SWT is Mighty, Wise.


فَمَن تَابَ مِن بَعْدِ ظُلْمِهِ وَأَصْلَحَ فَإِنَّ اللّهَ يَتُوبُ عَلَيْهِ إِنَّ اللّهَ غَفُورٌ رَّحِيمٌ

Faman taba min baAAdi thulmihi waaslaha fainna Allaha yatoobu AAalayhi inna Allaha ghafoorun raheem(un)

Then whoso repents after his wickedness and makes amends Allah-SWT shall certainly relent towards him. Allah-SWT is Forgiving, Merciful.


أَلَمْ تَعْلَمْ أَنَّ اللّهَ لَهُ مُلْكُ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالأَرْضِ يُعَذِّبُ مَن يَشَاء وَيَغْفِرُ لِمَن يَشَاء وَاللّهُ عَلَى كُلِّ شَيْءٍ قَدِيرٌ

Alam taAAlam anna Allaha lahu mulku a(l)ssamawati wa(a)lardi yuAAaththibu man yashao wayaghfiru liman yashao wa(A)llahu AAala kulli shayin qadeer(un)

Do you not know that Allah-SWT ’s is the kingdom of the heavens and the earth? He-SWT chastises whom He-SWT will, and He-SWT forgives whom He-SWT will; and Allah-SWT is Potent over everything.


يَا أَيُّهَا الرَّسُولُ لاَ يَحْزُنكَ الَّذِينَ يُسَارِعُونَ فِي الْكُفْرِ مِنَ الَّذِينَ قَالُواْ آمَنَّا بِأَفْوَاهِهِمْ وَلَمْ تُؤْمِن قُلُوبُهُمْ وَمِنَ الَّذِينَ هِادُواْ سَمَّاعُونَ لِلْكَذِبِ سَمَّاعُونَ لِقَوْمٍ آخَرِينَ لَمْ يَأْتُوكَ يُحَرِّفُونَ الْكَلِمَ مِن بَعْدِ مَوَاضِعِهِ يَقُولُونَ إِنْ أُوتِيتُمْ هَـذَا فَخُذُوهُ وَإِن لَّمْ تُؤْتَوْهُ فَاحْذَرُواْ وَمَن يُرِدِ اللّهُ فِتْنَتَهُ فَلَن تَمْلِكَ لَهُ مِنَ اللّهِ شَيْئًا أُوْلَـئِكَ الَّذِينَ لَمْ يُرِدِ اللّهُ أَن يُطَهِّرَ قُلُوبَهُمْ لَهُمْ فِي الدُّنْيَا خِزْيٌ وَلَهُمْ فِي الآخِرَةِ عَذَابٌ عَظِيمٌ

Ya ayyuha a(l)rasoolu la yahzunka allatheena yusariAAoona fee alkufri mina allatheena qaloo amanna biafwahihim walam tumin quloobuhum wamina allatheena hadoo sammaAAoona lilkathibi sammaAAoona liqawmin akhareena lam yatooka yuharrifoona alkalima min baAAdi mawadiAAihi yaqooloona in ooteetum hathafakhuthoohu wain lam tutawhu fa(i)htharoo waman yuridi Allahu fitnatahu falan tamlika lahu mina Allahi shayan olaika allatheena lam yuridi Allahu an yutahhira quloobahum lahum fee a(l)ddunya khizyun walahum fee alakhirati AAathabun AAatheem(un)

O’ Messenger-SW! Let not those grieve you-SW who hasten toward infidelity from among those who say with mouths: we believe, yet their hearts do not believe, and from among those who are Judaised: listeners to falsehoods, listeners to another people who do not come to you-SW; they distort the words from their places, saving. If what you are given is this, accept it, and if that is not given you-SW, be on your guard. And you shall not avail against Allah-SWT in anything anyone whom Allah-SWT wishes to try. These it is whoso hearts He-SWT would not purify; to them is humiliation in this world, and to them in the Hereafter there shall be a torment mighty.


سَمَّاعُونَ لِلْكَذِبِ أَكَّالُونَ لِلسُّحْتِ فَإِن جَآؤُوكَ فَاحْكُم بَيْنَهُم أَوْ أَعْرِضْ عَنْهُمْ وَإِن تُعْرِضْ عَنْهُمْ فَلَن يَضُرُّوكَ شَيْئًا وَإِنْ حَكَمْتَ فَاحْكُم بَيْنَهُمْ بِالْقِسْطِ إِنَّ اللّهَ يُحِبُّ الْمُقْسِطِينَ

SammaAAoona lilkathibi akkaloona li(l)ssuhti fain jaooka fa(o)hkum baynahum aw aAArid AAanhum wain tuAArid AAanhum falan yadurrooka shayan wainhakamta fa(o)hkum baynahum bi(a)lqisti inna Allaha yuhibbu almuqsiteen(a)

Listeners are they to falsehood and devourers of the forbidden. So if they come to you-SW either judge between them or turn away from them. And if you-SW turn away from them, they shall not be able to harm you-SW in anything; and if you-SW judge, judge between them with equity; verily Allah-SWT loves the equitable.


وَكَيْفَ يُحَكِّمُونَكَ وَعِندَهُمُ التَّوْرَاةُ فِيهَا حُكْمُ اللّهِ ثُمَّ يَتَوَلَّوْنَ مِن بَعْدِ ذَلِكَ وَمَا أُوْلَـئِكَ بِالْمُؤْمِنِينَ

Wakayfa yuhakkimoonaka waAAindahumu a(l)ttawratu feeha hukmu Allahi thumma yatawallawna min baAAdi thalika wama olaika bi(a)lmumineen(a)

And how will they ask you for judgment, while they have the Torah, in which is Allah-SWT's Judgement? And they turn away thereafter! They are no believers at all.


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

The address to those claiming faith continues. The Quranic style of speech here is charming indeed, when it says: "O’ you who believe!" This expression connotes affection, love and advice, and stresses upon the believers to renounce sin, abandon Allah-SWT's disobedience and not to allow the relationship between them and Allah-SWT weaken; rather to strive for strengthening it. For this purpose, one must find means of approaching Allah-SWT , termed as Wasilah.


Reality of Wasilah

According to scholars the meaning of Wasilah is to be joined in love, if it is written with s.  (see the difference in the Transliteration) it will mean an absolute joining without hinting at any under King emotions. Here it calls for such actions which increase Allah-SWT's Love in the heart, and by which Allah-SWT will take the seeker as His-SWT beloved. According to the Quran: "Follow me (the Holy Prophet-SW ) and Allah-SWT shall love you (3:31).


If you fulfill your obligations and restrain yourself from sin as commanded by the Holy Prophet-SW , Allah-SWT shall start loving you. If you complement them with Sunnah and voluntary Salat, as was the practice of the Holy Prophet-SW, Allah-SWT shall love you even more. Next in order are those neutral practices for which no hard and fast method has been fixed in Shari’ah. They are permissible, but include those acts which were not practiced by the Holy Prophet-SW as a routine throughout his life. Conforming to his-SW way of dressing also falls under the same category. Once Hadhrat ‘Umar Faruq-RAU had a new shirt with longer sleeves. He sent for a knife and asked his son to cut off the extra length. The son said that he would get a scissors, but Hadhrat 'Umar-RAU insisted on using the knife as once the Holy Prophet-SW had done so. It is quite possible that the Holy Prophet-SW may have used a knife due to the non­ availability of scissors but Hadhrat 'Umar-RAU had a choice. Nevertheless, following the Holy Prophet-SW comprehensively was extremely important to him.


When Hadhrat Ibn-e-'Umar-RAU was an old man, he was on his way to Hajj riding a camel. Suddenly, he bent down touching the packsaddle and sat up straight again. Those accompanying him asked the reason behind this action. He told them that there used to be a tree there, and as the Holy Prophet-SW had passed by he had bent down on his camel in a similar manner to avoid the branches. "But the tree is no longer here." he was asked. He replied 'Even if the tree stands no more, the gestures of the Holy Prophet-SW stand today to be followed. What do we have to do with the tree?"


If this level of adherence to the Holy Prophet-SW even in neutral acts is practiced. Allah-SWT's love too will multiply manifolds. This love will be initiated from Allah-SWT's side and it is characteristic of His-SWT Love, that when it is received, a person, in turn, starts loving Him-SWT . Even in everyday life if we love someone he will also reciprocate, and if we hate someone without even uttering a word, he too will begin to hate us. Following the Holy Prophet-SW in an endeavour to qualify for Allah-SWT's Love is the reality of Wasilah. Similarly, any action helpful in approaching Allah-SWT shall be a Wasilah. An intermediary or any human being helping in His-SWT Path will also be Wasilah. Such as the Prophets-AS, the Companions-RAU, the Aulia-, the pious and the righteous scholars. It is true that one's good deeds can be referred to while praying to Allah-SWT , since deeds are also a creation. Praying through the Wasilah of pious people is also permissible: so long as the motive is pure. One should not sell the honourable names of the Prophets-AS and the righteous for some petty mundane benefits. The Wasilah should only be sought for the sake of Allah-SWT , to seek His-SWT Pleasure and to struggle in His-SWT Cause. If Wasilah is available, but there is no struggle, optimum results cannot be obtained.


This should be ascertained from those who have had the opportunity to benefit from the company of an accomplished Shaikh, but for some reason it discontinued altogether or the time gap between the meetings drew longer. The spiritual states in this case tend to weaken. To benefit from Wasilah, be it good deeds or a pious person, one's personal efforts, are the pre-requisite. Jihad with sword is obligated by necessity. It may become an individual or a collective obligation, depending upon the prevailing circumstances. But Jihad with one's own soul to cultivate virtue and repel evil is a never ending process. Therefore, strive in the Cause of Allah-SWT , and work hard for success both in this world as well as in the Hereafter. When the Quran mentions success, it embraces personal, family, and national life extending to after life and the Day of Resurrection. The worldly affluence, in comparison, means nothing. For, firstly it is impossible that the entire wealth of the world may ever accumulate in one hand. And even if the non-believers amass all the wealth of the world and even if they double it, it will not suffice as ransom on the Day of Judgment. Allah-SWT will not accept anything because everything belongs to Him-SWT and they are not offering any personal belonging. The logical outcome of disbelief is punishment. A desire to find an outlet from the Hell will always pique the non-believers, but they will never succeed. Eternal torment and perpetual pain is their destiny. Therefore, it is very important to abandon wrongdoing, and obey Allah-SWT ; to love Him-SWT and win His-SWT Love. To achieve this one must put his heart and soul and his very life in His-SWT Cause. This is not an ordinary affair. The wealth is mundane and will not be of any help in the Hereafter, but Allah-SWT's Love will entitle a person to behold His-SWT Splendour and have the honour of a dialogue with Him-SWT . Do take a note of the difference.


Equality of Sexes in Shari'ah

If either a man or a woman is proven guilty of theft, his or her one hand is to be cut off. This is the punishment for the wrongdoing and also a lesson for others from Allah-SWT , to help keep the society reformed and justice established. This can be possible only when Allah-SWT's Love, His-SWT Fear and His-SWT Obedience are kept in sight while doing justice. Allah-SWT prevails over everything and it is His-SWT Wisdom that He-SWT has put human beings to trial and set standards. The option to repent is kept open, which will not remit the punishment in this world. However, if to seek Allah-SWT ’s Nearness and averts humiliation on the Day of Judgement; a grave sinner repents and reforms himself. He-SWT certainly accepts such repentance. The real essence of repentance is the reformation of one's conduct. Verbal utterances of repentance do not mean anything. Sincere repentance is accepted by Allah-SWT , as He-SWT is Forgiving and the Most Merciful.


O’ the one addressed! Don't you know that the real power and authority over the universe rests with Allah-SWT . He-SWT can punish whoever and however He-SWT Pleases: and forgives whoever He-SWT will. See how Patient and Kind He-SWT is; that He-SWT puts up with worthless human beings who attain mundane powers for a limited period and forget Him. They live on His-SWT land, eat from His-SWT provisions and still disobey Him-SWT . Although He-SWT is Omnipotent and can do anything He-SWT pleases: and does not need anyone's permission nor assistance: yet He-SWT forgives and overlooks such misdeeds. Similar generosity will also be displayed on the Day of Judgement. However, if some unfortunate person dies without ever seeking His-SWT Forgiveness, then he has been extremely unkind to his own self. If he has died as a non-believer, his destiny is Hell, but if he died as only a sinner he still has a hope: as Allah-SWT's Mercy is extremely vast.


Praise is to Allah-SWT ! What a loving way of addressing the believers! Here the Holy Prophet-SW is being addressed with brimming affection: "O’ Prophet-SW ! Do not be grieved for those who instead of drawing on your grace stumble head-on into disbelief. This is with reference to the hypocrites, who embrace faith in Allah-SWT with their tongues but their hearts do not accept it. Also the Jews who are no less unfortunate. The Holy Prophet-SW being a symbol of mercy for the entire universe, it was naturally painful for him to see even a single person getting wasted. This is an encouraging factor for those erring people, who may have thousands of faults, but are Muslims after all. They do possess the spirit to serve the Holy Prophet-SW . Such people shall be blessed by Allah-SWT and will not be deprived of His-SWT Prophet'-SW 's affection. The real faith is within the heart. Sincerity of the heart should be at the base of all actions. The level of sincerity determines the level of reward. Therefore, all Sufi Orders lay great emphasis on Zikr-e-Qalbi because once the heart is initiated the rest of the task is easy. If it is not all actions go waste.


As for the Jews, they are so unfortunate that listening to falsehood is their second nature. Their hearts have turned so black that they prefer the pack of lies fabricated by their scholars over the truth. That is why they do not accept the Din preached by the Holy Prophet-SW. Here it is a clear warning that if anyone, be he a religious leader or a saint, promotes rituals against the teachings of the Holy Prophet-SW, he must be refuted and countered. The Jews also had the bad habit of causing mischief and spying. They attend the audience of the Holy Prophet-SW’s only to collect information for passing it on to the enemies of the Muslims. But they are so wicked that also lie to them. In Madinah these Jews came into direct contact but even in the Makkan period, their sole aim was to create hindrances for the Holy Prophet-SW. The Jewish scholars used to arm the Makkan infidels, with questions and objections to be raised before the Holy Prophet-SW. Some of these mischievous questions have been recounted in the Quran. These Jews also tried time and again to instigate the Makkans to attack Madinah. They brought Coheres and Caesar against Islam and after their defeat set up an anti-Islam Movement within Islam. The establishment of this Movement took quite a long time though, with its basic literature emerging in the third and the fourth century Islam to date continues to be like a thorn in the hearts of the Jews. May Allah-SWT protect Islam and Muslims against their mischief!


In Madinah, a murder had taken place amongst the Jews, who had taken to laws discriminating between the rich and the poor. If a person from their tribe of Banu Quraizah killed a person from the rich Jewish tribe of Banu Nadhir, two persons from Banu Quraizah would be killed in lieu and the blood money would also be doubled. Since Banu Nadhir were rich, if anyone of them killed a person from Banu Quraizah, only the blood money due will be payable. Once a prince committed adultery in Khyber, and he was let free after verbal censure. Had it been a commoner they would have stoned him to death. People protested against this act of injustice, which was even against the Jews’ own Book. To quieten the upheaval, the Jews presented the case to the Holy Prophet-SW. They intended to accept the Holy Prophet-SWT ’s verdict if it conformed to their own desires, and to reject it otherwise. To obtain the verdict of their choice, they used the services of some hypocrites along with some Jews, who wanted to manipulate the verdict in their favour by coaxing the Holy Prophet-SW.


Allah-SWT informed His-SWT Prophet-SW of the conspiracy of both the groups-the hypocrites in the garb of Muslims and the Jews. These people possessing hearts blackened by their evil deeds wanted to deceive him. When Allah-SWT condemns such people, even the Holy Prophet-SW cannot help them out as they have, by choice, ingested so much poison that the cure is out of the hands of a doctor. These are the people whose hearts Allah-SWT does not ever intend to cleanse. He-SWT is so annoyed by their misdeeds that He-SWT does not choose such hearts for His-SWT Zikr and for His-SWT Lights. Thus they are denied all opportunities to repent: and for them awaits humiliation in this world and a painful doom in the Hereafter. These are the people who are addicted to hearing falsehood and devouring the unlawful. Listening to lies actually means that the truth is ignored and rituals and innovations are promoted as part of Din. Yet listening to even lie leaves an impact. The damage of the former is very severe and immediate, while the effects of lies commonly heard in everyday life are relatively less harmful. Imagine how harmful would it be to tell lies, when just listening is so devastating? And mark that the intake of unlawful food darkens the heart and freezes the ability to do good!


Maulana Mufti Muhammad Shafi writes that Suhat means that amount which one receives against the task for which he is already receiving a salary. For example if officers, policemen or other salaried employees take money for doing the duties assigned to them against their salaries, it would fall under Suhat. If they take money to do something illegal it is bribe (Rishwat). In the latter case both persons, the one offering as well as the one receiving the bribe will be equally guilty. This was the in and out of the Jews. They are however, not the citizens of the Islamic State nor there exists any Pact or Treaty with them. So if they come to him for a hearing, it is entirely up to him to grant it or refuse it because it is not his responsibility. However, if the hearing is accepted, justice must be done, for Allah-SWT loves the just. Islam does not entertain friends and foes where justice is in question. It is only concerned with truth and falsehood. The judgment must always be guided by the truth; for this is what Allah-SWT likes, even if the truth favours the non-believer. And when the Jews have their own Book why do they wish to come to him for a verdict? Is guidance over this issue not available in their Book or are they trying to evade it? The Holy Prophet-SW decided the case justly over which the Jews squabbled a great deal. The Holy Prophet-SW told them to call their most learned person. Hence Ibn-e-Suriya, their well-known scholar, was summoned. The Holy Prophet-SW asked him to swear by the Torah and tell what was the punishment for an adulterer therein. He confessed that in fact a prince had committed that offence, and was spared after verbal admonition instead of being stoned to death. Thus double standards of justice were laid, one for the poor and the other for the privileged. Otherwise, he added that the verdict passed by the Holy Prophet-SW was in accordance with what is given in Torah. The Jews, who had reverted to disbelief by defying their own Divine Book, plunged deeper into infidelity by denying the Holy Prophet-SW. It is a wonder in what will such people believe before life deserts them!