سورة الأعراف   

Surah Name: Al-A'raf Meaning:The Heights

  • Revealed at Makkah
  • The foundation of Islam is on the transparent belief in the Unity of Allah-SWT . The relationship between man and Allah-SWT is such that the former must present his needs only before Him-SWT display his utter humility and insignificance. The theme of the preceding Surah is further expanded here, with emphasis on the importance of the Prophethood because no one can, on his own, comprehend Allah-SWT's Magnificence. He-SWT is beyond human senses. Allah-SWT's Cognition is a feeling induced into the human heart, and this honour is conferred upon the subtle hearts of His-SWT Prophets-AS through Revelations. They distribute these blessings amongst their followers, through a process known as Tazkiyah. In other words, the heart that receives this light is purified and capacitated to comprehend the Divine Book and the Wisdom. Thus the cognition of the Prophet-AS‘s paves the way to the Cognition of Allah-SWT ’. This Surah discusses the importance of Prophethood, supporting it with both logical and chronicle evidence, in the light of history of the preceding nations and their Prophets"-AS their conduct and the end results thereof. Towards the end is the discussion on the Unity of Allah-SWT ’. Also listed are some of His-SWT ’ Commands to facilitate His-SWT Cognition through obedience

  • Total Number of Rukū / Sections 24
  • Total Number of Āyāt / Parts 206
  • Sūrah / Chapter number 7
  • Rukū / Section 20 contains Āyāt / Parts 5
  • Siparah/ Volume 8 & 9


قُلْ يَا أَيُّهَا النَّاسُ إِنِّي رَسُولُ اللّهِ إِلَيْكُمْ جَمِيعًا الَّذِي لَهُ مُلْكُ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالأَرْضِ لا إِلَـهَ إِلاَّ هُوَ يُحْيِـي وَيُمِيتُ فَآمِنُواْ بِاللّهِ وَرَسُولِهِ النَّبِيِّ الأُمِّيِّ الَّذِي يُؤْمِنُ بِاللّهِ وَكَلِمَاتِهِ وَاتَّبِعُوهُ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَهْتَدُونَ

Qul ya ayyuha a(l)nnasu innee rasoolu Allahi ilaykum jameeAAan allathee lahu mulku a(l)ssamawati wa(a)lardi la ilaha illa huwa yuhyee wayumeetu faaminoo bi(A)llahi warasoolihi a(l)nnabiyyi alommiyyi allathee yuminu bi(A)llahi wakalimatihi wa(i)ttabiAAoohu laAAallakum tahtadoon(a)

Say you-SW: O mankind! Verily I am Allah-SWT's Messenger-SW to you all; of Him-SWT Whose-SWT is the dominion of the heavens and the earth. No god is there but He-SWT; He-SWT gives life and causes death. Believe then in Allaah-SWT and His-SWT Messenger-SW, the unlettered Prophet-SW, who believes in Allaah-SWT and His-SWT Words; and follow him-SW that perhaps you may be guided.


وَمِن قَوْمِ مُوسَى أُمَّةٌ يَهْدُونَ بِالْحَقِّ وَبِهِ يَعْدِلُونَ

Wamin qawmi moosa ommatun yahdoona bi(a)lhaqqi wabihi yaAAdiloon(a)

And of the people of Musa-AS there is a community guiding others by the truth and judging thereby.


وَقَطَّعْنَاهُمُ اثْنَتَيْ عَشْرَةَ أَسْبَاطًا أُمَمًا وَأَوْحَيْنَا إِلَى مُوسَى إِذِ اسْتَسْقَاهُ قَوْمُهُ أَنِ اضْرِب بِّعَصَاكَ الْحَجَرَ فَانبَجَسَتْ مِنْهُ اثْنَتَا عَشْرَةَ عَيْنًا قَدْ عَلِمَ كُلُّ أُنَاسٍ مَّشْرَبَهُمْ وَظَلَّلْنَا عَلَيْهِمُ الْغَمَامَ وَأَنزَلْنَا عَلَيْهِمُ الْمَنَّ وَالسَّلْوَى كُلُواْ مِن طَيِّبَاتِ مَا رَزَقْنَاكُمْ وَمَا ظَلَمُونَا وَلَـكِن كَانُواْ أَنفُسَهُمْ يَظْلِمُونَ

WaqattaAAnahumu ithnatay AAashrata asbatan omaman waawhayna ila moosaithi istasqahu qawmuhu ani idrib biAAasaka alhajara fa(i)nbajasat minhu ithnataAAashrata AAaynan qad AAalima kullu onasin mashrabahum wathallalnaAAalayhimu alghamama waanzalna AAalayhimu almanna wa(al)ssalwa kuloo mintayyibati ma razaqnakum wama thalamoona walakin kanoo anfusahum yathlimoon(a)

And We-SWT divided them into twelve tribes as nations. And We-SWT revealed to Musa-AS, when his people asked him for water: smite the rock with your staff. Then gushed forth from it twelve springs; each people already knew their drinking place. And We-SWT shaded them with thick clouds; and We-SWT sent down upon them the manna and the quails, saying: eat of the pure things with which We-SWT have provided you. And they wronged Us-SWT not, but themselves they were used to wrong.


وَإِذْ قِيلَ لَهُمُ اسْكُنُواْ هَـذِهِ الْقَرْيَةَ وَكُلُواْ مِنْهَا حَيْثُ شِئْتُمْ وَقُولُواْ حِطَّةٌ وَادْخُلُواْ الْبَابَ سُجَّدًا نَّغْفِرْ لَكُمْ خَطِيئَاتِكُمْ سَنَزِيدُ الْمُحْسِنِينَ

Waith qeela lahumu oskunoo hathihi alqaryata wakuloo minha haythu shitum waqooloo hittatun wa(o)dkhuloo albaba sujjadan naghfir lakum khateeatikum sanazeedu almuhsineen(a)

Recall the time when it was said to them: reside in the over there town and eat from it wherever you wish, and say: forgiveness and enter the gate bowing; and We-SWT shall forgive you your trespasses. We-SWT give abundance to the well doers.


فَبَدَّلَ الَّذِينَ ظَلَمُواْ مِنْهُمْ قَوْلاً غَيْرَ الَّذِي قِيلَ لَهُمْ فَأَرْسَلْنَا عَلَيْهِمْ رِجْزًا مِّنَ السَّمَاء بِمَا كَانُواْ يَظْلِمُونَ

Fabaddala allatheena thalamoo minhum qawlan ghayra allathee qeela lahum faarsalna AAalayhim rijzan mina a(l)ssamai bima kanoo yathlimoon(a)

Then those of them who did wrong changed the word that had been told them for another; thereupon We-SWT sent a scourge upon them from the heaven for they were used to transgress.


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

All the Prophets-AS informed their respective nations about the future raising of the Holy Prophet-SW. They instructed them to believe in him and also took a pledge that whoever from amongst them or their progeny would live to see him, must obey him. When Prophet Musa-AS requested Allah-SWT to bless his nation with exalted levels of excellence it was revealed to him that these will be given to the contemporaries of the unlettered Prophet-SW's, those who will believe in him-SW. Thus the devotion and obedience to the Holy Prophet-SW has been declared as the consummation of faith and acme of excellence. The Holy Prophet-SW is told to announce that he-SW is Allah-SWT's Messenger-SW for the entire mankind. So if believing in him-SW was enjoined upon the preceding nations, it is obligator) on everyone, forever, to believe in him-SW after his-SW raising.


Miraculous and Final Prophethood

The Holy Prophet-SW is instructed to announce that he-SW was not sent for any specific nation or region or time but for the entire mankind for all times to come, as Allah-SWT's Messenger-SW: a Messenger-SW in whom the preceding nations believed through their Prophets-AS And for the contemporary and future generations, it has been made obligatory to believe in him-SW and in his-SW Message. And those failing to do so shall be deemed as non believers. This indeed is the finality of Prophethood as by the raising of the Holy Prophet-SW the Prophethood stood completed. It left no room or need for any new Prophet-AS to be sent unto any nation or region or time. Now if anyone makes any such claim, he certainly would be an imposter! This is why Muslim Jurists have declared that an imposter himself is a non believer, and anyone seeking a proof from him also becomes one. This is because the latter has failed to believe in the finality of Prophethood and there lurked in his mind a possibility of a new Prophet-AS. All who go astray by following an imposter are those who had concealed in them the germs of this disbelief all along.


The finality of the Prophethood is also evident from the fact that even if any of the preceding Prophets-AS returns to earth, he too will have to follow the teachings of the Holy Prophet-SW. According to Hadith:  Prophet Musa-AS was alive today, he would have no option but to follow me; and Prophet Isa-AS who dwells now in the heavens, on his return to earth, will follow my Shari'ah while retaining his Prophet hood."


Secondly, a great miracle of the Holy Prophet-SW is the amazing speed and effectiveness with which his Message spread, in the absence of any worthwhile means of communications: telephone, telegraph, postal system etc, at the time of his-SW raising. The Holy Prophet-SW announces his-SW Prophethood from a hillock of a remote settlement located in the wilderness of a vast desert. The prevalent condition is that not a single soul on the face of the earth is acquainted with Allah-SWT's Name. Under these circumstances his-SW declaration is a miracle in itself. Apparently it is impossible to convey the Message to all the far off settlements, let alone enforce it. But the excellence of the Holy Prophet-SW must be acknowledged that not only did people accept his Message but also became a source of conveying it to others over a very short span of time. So much so that within twenty three years of his-SW raising, i.e. by the time the Revelation of the Quran was completed, the entire Arabian Peninsula had turned into an Islamic State. And within another twenty three years after his-SW passing away, the devotees-RAU of his-SW Prophethood established a mighty empire of Islam extending from China to Spain and from Siberia to Africa. This was a manifestation of faith in Allah-SWT and obedience to the Holy Prophet-SW as well as an open invitation to it. From these times, the slogans of Allah-SWT's Unity echo all around the globe and will In-sha-Allah continue to be heard till the Final Day.


Righteous Group Survives for Ever

This is indeed the evidence of the fact that the Ummah of the Holy Prophet-SW will never unite on falsehood. There will always be in every Age, a group of the righteous, who will be the custodians of the light of Prophet hood. This is supported by a saying of the Holy Prophet-SW’s: "There will always be a group of people who will stand fast on truth and will negate rituals and absurdities. They will be like my deputies-RAU in carrying out the duties of Prophet hood," or words to that effect. Imam Raza-RUA asserts that the Ayah "be with the truthful" proves that there will always be a group of truthful persons in the world to justify this Divine Command. This also proves the authenticity of Ij’ma (Consensus of the Ummah) as it is impossible that this group of the truthful will ever side with falsehood.


Correction of a Misunderstanding

Some people suggest that a person shall win salvation in the Hereafter no matter what religion he follows so long as he does not hurt anyone and acts piously. This certainly is in-correct as after the raising of the Holy Prophet-SW"s believing in him-SW is the very basis of piety. No matter what religion a person may have followed, as soon as he hears about the Holy Prophet-SW he will have to believe in him-SW as Allah-SWT's Messenger-SW to find an entry in Islam. Only as a Muslim shall a good deed benefit him in this world and the Hereafter. Outside Islam it will benefit him only in this world. But for a person who has not heard of the Holy Prophet-SW and is either the follower of any preceding Divine Religion or is logically convinced of Allah-SWT's Unity shall qualify for salvation. But there is virtually no place in the world where the lights of his exalted name are not shining. However, to absorb them in one's heart is purely by good fortune. Allaah-SWT declares that the appointment of a single Prophet-SW for the entire mankind is nothing strange. After all the Owner of the entire creation is also One, Whose Sovereignty prevails over the entire universe. It is He-SWT Who has sent His-SWT Messenger-SW. He-SWT is the Most Glorious and the Only One Worthy of worship. Besides Him-SWT all the rest are ensnared in a struggle between life and death. It is He-SWT Alone Who gives life and death to everyone. Therefore O' Children of Aadam-AS! It is for your own good that you accept the Greatness and Unity of Allaah-SWT and believe in the unlettered Prophet-SW who himself-SW is a believer of Allah-SWT's Magnificence, all of His-SWT Messengers-AS and His-SWT Scriptures. In other words, inspite of enjoying the most exalted status, he-SW also believes in the status given to others by Allaah-SWT . Therefore, it is best for people to obey and to serve him-SW with sincerity in order to find true guidance. The opinion of our pious precursors is extremely valuable, in that all the paths leading to the Divine Court have been closed except one of the Holy Prophet-SW.


Allah-SWT reveals that amongst the followers of Prophet Musa-AS was also a group of people who always stood firm on truth and propagated it. They pursued their religion, but as soon as the raising of the Holy Prophet-SW was announced, they embraced Islam. Such fortunate people were there amongst the Christians too, and some lucky ones continue to embrace Islam until now.


Now the Divine Address reverts back to Prophet Musa-AS. He is reminded of the Divine Favour how the twelve clans of Bani Israil were awarded separate status. When they faced the shortage of water, Prophet Musa-AS raised his hands in prayer. He was told to strike the rock with his rod and from it sprouted twelve water springs, one for each clan. When heat became unbearable, Allaah-SWT provided them with a canopy of clouds and catered for them pure food from the heavens in the form of quails and the sweet grain. They were directed to eat the pure and the lawful, but the fools did not obey and as a result headed for destruction. They did not wrong Allaah-SWT but indeed wronged themselves. These events are recounted to recapitulate Allaah-SWT ’s Graciousness bestowed upon mankind by the raising the Holy Prophet-SW a token of Mercy for the entire universe. Now if someone shrugs the necessity to obey him-SW, he himself will be at a stupendous loss.


Allah-SWT gave control to Bani Israil over the cities without having to fight and permitted them to eat and drink at leisure and to prostrate before Allaah-SWT in penitence, upon entering the city. Not only that they shall be forgiven their past follies but the devotees shall also be blessed with more rewards. Yet the ill fated distorted even the words they were directed to utter, let alone act in compliance.


Rituals against Religion are Disastrous

The eternal loss besides, natural calamities gripped them in this world. It clearly shows that if the teachings of the Holy Prophet-SW are renounced giving way to rituals for Divine Reward, it will certainly invoke disasters like loss of crops, famine, disease, earthquakes etc. In the modern world, despite all the technology and other advancements, the Divine chastisement in the form of wars, natural catastrophes and diseases prevails. Nevertheless, for anyone looking for peace, the path of the Holy Prophet-SW is open, a sure way to safety, be it a nation or an individual.