قُلۡ ہَلۡ مِنۡ شُرَکَآئِکُمۡ مَّنۡ یَّہۡدِیۡۤ اِلَی الۡحَقِّ ؕ قُلِ اللّٰہُ یَہۡدِیۡ لِلۡحَقِّ ؕ اَفَمَنۡ یَّہۡدِیۡۤ اِلَی الۡحَقِّ اَحَقُّ اَنۡ یُّتَّبَعَ اَمَّنۡ لَّا یَہِدِّیۡۤ اِلَّاۤ اَنۡ یُّہۡدٰی ۚ فَمَا لَکُمۡ ۟ کَیۡفَ تَحۡکُمُوۡنَ ﴿۳۶﴾
قُلۡ هَلۡ مِن شُرَكَآئِكُم مَّن يَهۡدِيٓ إِلَى ٱلۡحَقِّۚ قُلِ ٱللَّهُ يَهۡدِي لِلۡحَقِّۗ أَفَمَن يَهۡدِيٓ إِلَى ٱلۡحَقِّ أَحَقُّ أَن يُتَّبَعَ أَمَّن لَّا يَهِدِّيٓ إِلَّآ أَن يُهۡدَىٰۖ فَمَا لَكُمۡ كَيۡفَ تَحۡكُمُونَ
1311. Important Words:
یھدی yahiddi (finds the way himself) which is really یھتدی (from اھتدی i.e. he found or followed the right way) is the intransitive form of ھدی which means, he directed him aright or caused him to take or follow the right way. یھدی (which is really یھتدی, the letter تا having been merged into the letter د) means, he became rightly directed; he followed or found the right way; he went aright (Lane).
The untenability of their position is brought home to idolaters in this verse. The verse asks them the pertinent question:If God does not send guidance, is it their idols who do so? If the latter have ever sent guidance for men, their votaries could say, with some justification, that God might have entrusted the task of guidance to these idols or deities. But the fact is that not a single instance is on record where an idol or a false deity has ever been credited with the sending down of guidance for mankind. It is indeed strange that, whereas idolatry is so rife in the world, there is not a single book on earth which is alleged to have been revealed to any person by any of the false deities. The world has witnessed all sorts of lies invented by men, but nobody has ever dared to forge the lie that such and such a book has been revealed to him by such and such an idol or deity. Now when the sending down of guidance has never been even falsely ascribed to any idol or deity, how can the idolaters, in the face of guidance having been revealed to mankind in all ages, deny that it is God the Almighty Who sends it down for humanity?
The words, Is then he who leads to the truth more worthy to be followed, may also refer to the Prophets of God who are sent to guide men to the truth. In this case the latter part of the verse would mean, "who is more worthy to be followed, a Prophet of God or the false deities and their votaries who themselves stand in need of guidance and cannot (in opposition to the teaching of the Prophets) offer any revealed teaching?" (close)
وَ مَا یَتَّبِعُ اَکۡثَرُہُمۡ اِلَّا ظَنًّا ؕ اِنَّ الظَّنَّ لَا یُغۡنِیۡ مِنَ الۡحَقِّ شَیۡئًا ؕ اِنَّ اللّٰہَ عَلِیۡمٌۢ بِمَا یَفۡعَلُوۡنَ ﴿۳۷﴾
وَمَا يَتَّبِعُ أَكۡثَرُهُمۡ إِلَّا ظَنًّاۚ إِنَّ ٱلظَّنَّ لَا يُغۡنِي مِنَ ٱلۡحَقِّ شَيۡـًٔاۚ إِنَّ ٱللَّهَ عَلِيمُۢ بِمَا يَفۡعَلُونَ
c. 6:117; 10:67; 53:29. (close)
1260. The beliefs and views held by those who set up associates with God are born of mere fancies and surmises, because their so-called deities have never revealed guidance to them. (close)
a. 6:117; 10:67; 53:29. (close)
1312. Important Words:
الظن (conjecture) is used in different senses: (1) doubt or uncertainty; (2) thought, supposition or conjecture (3) preponderant belief (or strong presumption) with the admission that the contrary may be the case; (4) knowledge or certainty (Lane).
The word ظن which, as stated under Important Words, gives different meanings, is here used in the sense of either "doubt or uncertainty" or "conjecture or supposition," for it cannot be taken in the other two senses, because truth and knowledge never contradict each other nor can there be any real conflict between truth and a strong presumption. A presumption which is based on reason can be held only so long as the truth is hidden. Once the truth becomes disclosed and manifest, there remains no room for presumption. In that case, it is only ill-based suspicions or false opinions that try to make a stand against truth, for they are not based on reason but spring from waywardness, doubt or weakness of character. The verse means to say that the beliefs and views held by those who set up equals to God are born of mere fancies and surmises, because their so-called deities have never revealed guidance to them.
By using the words, most of them, the Quran does not mean that some idolaters possess real grounds for their idolatrous views. The expression has been used to point to the two classes of idolaters. One class consists of those who hold to their idolatrous views merely through greed or bigotry, while in their heart of hearts they know that idolatry possesses no true or reasonable basis. The other class—a large majority—however, sincerely believe in the plurality of gods, though such belief is not based on reason, common sense or observation, but has its origin only in fancy and superstition.
The Quran again teaches a great truth in this verse, viz. that we should not regard all those who hold views different from ours as wilful liars or dishonest persons. Most people sincerely believe their religion to be true, though their beliefs are due to the weakness of their intellect or lack of proper thinking. Such people do not make a full and sustained effort to find the truth and are mentally sluggish and indolent. (close)
وَ مَا کَانَ ہٰذَا الۡقُرۡاٰنُ اَنۡ یُّفۡتَرٰی مِنۡ دُوۡنِ اللّٰہِ وَ لٰکِنۡ تَصۡدِیۡقَ الَّذِیۡ بَیۡنَ یَدَیۡہِ وَ تَفۡصِیۡلَ الۡکِتٰبِ لَا رَیۡبَ فِیۡہِ مِنۡ رَّبِّ الۡعٰلَمِیۡنَ ﴿۟۳۸﴾
وَمَا كَانَ هَٰذَا ٱلۡقُرۡءَانُ أَن يُفۡتَرَىٰ مِن دُونِ ٱللَّهِ وَلَٰكِن تَصۡدِيقَ ٱلَّذِي بَيۡنَ يَدَيۡهِ وَتَفۡصِيلَ ٱلۡكِتَٰبِ لَا رَيۡبَ فِيهِ مِن رَّبِّ ٱلۡعَٰلَمِينَ
a. 12:112; 16:90. (close)
1261. The verse gives five very cogent reasons to show that the Qur’an is the revealed Word of God: (a) It deals with such themes as are beyond the power of man to know and as can be revealed by God alone. (b) The prophecies of the previous Prophets establish its Divine origin. (c) It explains and expounds the teachings of previous Scriptures in such a clear and comprehensive manner as no other Scripture has done. (d) It contains all the reasons and arguments needed to prove its Divine origin and does not require the help or support of any outside person or book for this purpose. (e) Unlike former Scriptures it satisfies the moral needs and requirements of all mankind under all circumstances. (close)
a. 12:112; 16:90. (close)
The previous verse dealt with the subject that it was necessary for God to have sent down revelation for the guidance of mankind and that it is not in the power of anyone else to provide such spiritual guidance. From a discussion of the subject in principle, the Quran in this verse turns to the particular question, whether the Quran could be the word of man. It answers this question in the negative and gives five very cogent reasons to show that it is indeed the revealed word of God.
The first argument hinted at in the words, except Allah, is that the Quran comprises such subjects as are beyond the power of man to know and as can be revealed by God alone. Now among the things which are known to God alone are matters which pertain to the unseen, viz. prophecies about great events of the future; and there can be no doubt about the Divine origin of a book which contains things which are known to God alone.
The second argument given here to prove the Divine origin of the Quran is that not only do its own prophecies contradict the idea of its having been forged and fabricated by a man but the prophecies of the previous Prophets also establish its Divine origin. This is hinted at in the words, it fulfils that which is before it; and obviously no man-made book has the power to fulfil in itself prophecies foretold in previous Scriptures.
It is a peculiar characteristic of the Quran that, instead of speaking of former Prophets as bearing witness to the truth of the latter Prophets, it represents the latter as fulfilling what the former Prophets have said, the reason being that whereas former Prophets do indeed predict the advent of the Prophets that are to come after them, the latter Prophets establish the truth of the former Prophets by making their appearance exactly at the time and in the manner foretold. The best way of expressing this idea is the one that has been followed by the Quran. For, to say that the former Prophets bear testimony to the truth of such and such a Prophet or of such and such a revelation, is not so effective as to say that it is only by means of the present revelation or the present Prophet that the truth of the former Prophets can now become established. This is a line of reasoning which the followers of the former Prophets dare not reject.
The third argument embodied in this verse is hinted at in the words, an exposition of the Law, i.e. the Quran explains and expounds the teachings of previous Scriptures. This also constitutes a very strong proof of the truth of the Quran. The previous Scriptures require the help of the Quran for the exposition and elucidation of their teachings. The Torah, the Gospels, the Vedas, the Zend-Avesta, all discuss such great spiritual problems as the Unity of God, revelation, Divine attributes, prophethood, life after death, moral and spiritual conditions, etc., but none of these books deals with these questions in such a manner as to make them perfectly clear and understandable, and their ambiguities and obscurities have to be explained with the help of the Quran. So in the verse under comment the claim is made that the Quran explains and clarifies those parts of previous Scriptures about which so much vagueness and obscurity exists and disbelievers are told that, if they deny the Divine origin of the Quran, they will have to admit that the All-Knowing God Himself was unable to put so much spiritual knowledge in all the former revealed books as this human being (the Prophet of Islam) has succeeded in placing in this small Book, the Quran. So the followers of other faiths will have either to admit the Divine origin of the Quran or deny previous Scriptures also.
The fourth argument given in this verse is contained in the words, There is no doubt about it, which means that the Quran contains all the reasons and arguments needed to prove its Divine origin and does not require the help or support of any outside person or book for that purpose. It deals with various social, moral and spiritual problems in such a perfect and exhaustive manner that he who ponders over it dispassionately can readily see that the Quran makes no claim which it does not support with cogent reasons and powerful arguments. This constitutes irrefutable evidence of the fact that this Book has indeed proceeded from God; for the Quran demands our belief in many unseen things and it is not in the power of man to prove unseen things by intellectual reasoning alone without the help of observation and experience. But obviously man cannot provide bases of observation and experience for things unseen. Only God can do it.
The fifth argument of the Divine origin of the Quran as given in this verse is contained in the words, It is from the Lord of all the worlds. This is to hint that by means of the Quran the Divine attribute of Rabbul ‘Alamin (Lord of all the worlds) has been made manifest to all mankind. The Quran is not meant to satisfy the need and requirements of a particular people or a particular period only, as were the previous Scriptures, but is meant for all nations and all ages. Now it is impossible for a human being to produce a book which should satisfy the requirements of all mankind for all time. Man is naturally influenced by his environment and ordinarily foresees and seeks to meet his immediate needs only. It is God alone Who can give such teachings as are equally useful for all times and all peoples and as are unaffected by changes in time and in the conditions and circumstances of man. The Quran embodies such teachings. (close)
اَمۡ یَقُوۡلُوۡنَ افۡتَرٰٮہُ ؕ قُلۡ فَاۡتُوۡا بِسُوۡرَۃٍ مِّثۡلِہٖ وَ ادۡعُوۡا مَنِ اسۡتَطَعۡتُمۡ مِّنۡ دُوۡنِ اللّٰہِ اِنۡ کُنۡتُمۡ صٰدِقِیۡنَ ﴿۳۹﴾
أَمۡ يَقُولُونَ ٱفۡتَرَىٰهُۖ قُلۡ فَأۡتُواْ بِسُورَةٖ مِّثۡلِهِۦ وَٱدۡعُواْ مَنِ ٱسۡتَطَعۡتُم مِّن دُونِ ٱللَّهِ إِن كُنتُمۡ صَٰدِقِينَ
b. 2:24; 11:14; 17:89; 52:34, 35. (close)
1262. The verse challenges disbelievers that if a book with such excellences as the Qur’an possesses could be a human forgery, then why do they not produce a similar one themselves? This challenge stands for all time. See also 44. (close)
a. 2:24; 11:14; 17:89; 52:34-35. (close)
Notwithstanding the great excellences of the Quran mentioned in the preceding verse, disbelievers had the hardihood to allege that it was a fabrication of the Holy Prophet. The verse under comment asks, if a book with such excellences as the Quran possesses could be a human fabrication, then why do disbelievers not produce a similar one themselves? Similar challenges have been made in the Quran at different places, in different words. At one place the Quran calls upon disbelievers to produce a book like the whole of the Quran; at another it challenges them to produce ten chapters comparable to the Quranic Surahs; at yet another place it requires them to produce even a single Surah like those of the Quran. This shows that each of the passages containing these challenges deals with the subject from a different standpoint and offers a different challenge. In the verse under comment, for instance, the pronoun "it" in the expression مثله (like unto it) does not refer to the whole of the Quran but only to the previous verse of the present Surah. As we have seen, the previous verse has advanced five arguments to show that the Quran is the revealed word of God and in the present verse disbelievers are told that if they still persist in looking upon the Quran as the word of man, then let them produce a book which, let alone all the five arguments embodied in the previous verse, should possess only one of them. It is a patent fact, however, that not one of these five arguments about the Divine origin of the Quran is to be found in any work of man. This is a claim which nobody has ever dared to contradict, nor is there a possibility of future contradiction. The challenge stands for all time. The heavens and the earth may pass away, but no man will ever be able to produce a book like the Quran.
If the word Surah in this verse be taken to mean a chapter, then the verse would mean that disbelievers are called upon to produce even a chapter comparable with the Quran. But then the challenge will not be so pointed. For, in that case disbelievers would be called upon to bring a full chapter characterized by all the five qualities mentioned in the previous verse, while in the other case they are required to produce any composition containing only one of the five qualities. For a detailed treatment of this important subject see 2:24. (close)
بَلۡ کَذَّبُوۡا بِمَا لَمۡ یُحِیۡطُوۡا بِعِلۡمِہٖ وَ لَمَّا یَاۡتِہِمۡ تَاۡوِیۡلُہٗ ؕ کَذٰلِکَ کَذَّبَ الَّذِیۡنَ مِنۡ قَبۡلِہِمۡ فَانۡظُرۡ کَیۡفَ کَانَ عَاقِبَۃُ الظّٰلِمِیۡنَ ﴿۴۰﴾
بَلۡ كَذَّبُواْ بِمَا لَمۡ يُحِيطُواْ بِعِلۡمِهِۦ وَلَمَّا يَأۡتِهِمۡ تَأۡوِيلُهُۥۚ كَذَٰلِكَ كَذَّبَ ٱلَّذِينَ مِن قَبۡلِهِمۡۖ فَٱنظُرۡ كَيۡفَ كَانَ عَٰقِبَةُ ٱلظَّـٰلِمِينَ
c. 27:85. (close)
a. 27:85. (close)
The verse means that it is no wonder that disbelievers look upon the Quran as a fabrication (see the preceding verse). When a man does not understand a thing fully, he is prone to deny it. As disbelievers did not comprehend the Quranic teaching and found it to be contradictory to many of their confirmed views and cherished notions, they rejected it forthwith. The words, they have rejected that the knowledge of which they did not compass, may also mean, "they hastened to reject the Quran before even trying to understand it or knowing its true significance."
The words, nor has the true significance thereof yet come to them, may lead some to think that if a long period must elapse before the reality and true significance of some of the things promised by the Prophets could be known, then it would not be wrong to disbelieve in them in the beginning when that reality could not yet be known. But such an inference would be manifestly wrong. The verse does not mean that in the beginning the Prophets do not possess those proofs and arguments which can help seekers after truth to know and recognize their truth. What it means is that those who, in spite of witnessing signs which go to establish the truth of a Prophet, attach importance to certain other matters to which they wrongly give undue weight, should not be in a hurry to deny the truth of the Prophet on that score only but should wait till those matters about which they entertain doubts are clarified.
The Rev. Mr. Wherry, quoting Brinkman, says that on the basis of this verse no blame could attach to the Meccans for rejecting the Quran, because, according to the Quran itself, they were not yet in full possession of the required knowledge. But the reverend gentleman did not trouble to consider that it is one thing to be unable to possess full knowledge about a certain thing and quite another not to try to acquire such knowledge. The Quran does not say that disbelievers were unable to get sufficient knowledge by which they could know the truth of the Holy Prophet, but that they never tried to acquire such knowledge and rejected him on the ground that he was a common man like themselves. (close)
وَ مِنۡہُمۡ مَّنۡ یُّؤۡمِنُ بِہٖ وَ مِنۡہُمۡ مَّنۡ لَّا یُؤۡمِنُ بِہٖ ؕ وَ رَبُّکَ اَعۡلَمُ بِالۡمُفۡسِدِیۡنَ ﴿٪۴۱﴾
وَمِنۡهُم مَّن يُؤۡمِنُ بِهِۦ وَمِنۡهُم مَّن لَّا يُؤۡمِنُ بِهِۦۚ وَرَبُّكَ أَعۡلَمُ بِٱلۡمُفۡسِدِينَ
a. 2:254; 4:56. (close)
a. 2:254; 4:56. (close)
The verse says that in spite of the hostile attitude of disbelievers, they will not all remain unguided. Some of them will change their minds and accept the truth. Only those who persist in their evil ways and continue to act corruptly to the last will deprive themselves permanently of faith and guidance. The verse gives the reason why Divine punishment was delayed, which is that there was not only the likelihood of some of the opponents of Islam eventually accepting it but that God knew for a fact that some of them would actually become sincere Muslims. He, therefore, refrained from sending His punishment earlier.
The verse constituted a powerful prophecy which was fulfilled in due course. If the Meccans had been destroyed immediately after they rejected the Holy Prophet, how would men like Khalid bin Walid, ‘Amr bin al-‘As, ‘Ikrimah bin Abu Jahl and many other brave and valiant champions of Islam, have accepted the true faith? (close)
وَ اِنۡ کَذَّبُوۡکَ فَقُلۡ لِّیۡ عَمَلِیۡ وَ لَکُمۡ عَمَلُکُمۡ ۚ اَنۡتُمۡ بَرِیۡٓـــُٔوۡنَ مِمَّاۤ اَعۡمَلُ وَ اَنَا بَرِیۡٓءٌ مِّمَّا تَعۡمَلُوۡنَ ﴿۴۲﴾
وَإِن كَذَّبُوكَ فَقُل لِّي عَمَلِي وَلَكُمۡ عَمَلُكُمۡۖ أَنتُم بَرِيٓـُٔونَ مِمَّآ أَعۡمَلُ وَأَنَا۠ بَرِيٓءٞ مِّمَّا تَعۡمَلُونَ
b. 2:140; 109:7. (close)
b. 2:140; 109:7. (close)
This verse throws interesting light on the catholicity and broad-mindedness of Islam. Disbelievers are told here that if they prefer to reject the Holy Prophet, they are at perfect liberty to do so. In fact, whenever there exists a difference of views between two parties, each party has the right to show the other to be in error. But this difference should not be allowed to go further, and one party should not compel the other party to accept its views.
The verse declares that when it is well known that believers and disbelievers are two distinct and separate parties and there is no likelihood of the one being mistaken for the other, and when their ways of working are also different, then there is no reason why compulsion should be resorted to. Compulsion may only be exercised when the conduct of one party is likely to bring discredit to the other party. But, situated as they are, the works of a Prophet and of his followers bring no discredit to disbelievers, nor do the actions of disbelievers bring any discredit to believers. Therefore, there is no justification for either of the two classes to bring compulsion to bear on the other.
The verse is also capable of another interpretation. It may mean that the works of the Holy Prophet are quite distinct from those of the disbelievers and there is no similarity between the two. This being so, the result would show whose works are right and whose wrong. When there is similarity between the works of two parties, it is difficult to determine definitely the cause of the progress or degeneration, as the case may be, of one party or the other. But when there exists absolutely no similarity between the works of two parties, everybody is in a position to fix responsibility for the result. (close)
وَ مِنۡہُمۡ مَّنۡ یَّسۡتَمِعُوۡنَ اِلَیۡکَ ؕ اَفَاَنۡتَ تُسۡمِعُ الصُّمَّ وَ لَوۡ کَانُوۡا لَا یَعۡقِلُوۡنَ ﴿۴۳﴾
وَمِنۡهُم مَّن يَسۡتَمِعُونَ إِلَيۡكَۚ أَفَأَنتَ تُسۡمِعُ ٱلصُّمَّ وَلَوۡ كَانُواْ لَا يَعۡقِلُونَ
c. 6:26; 17:48. (close)
d. 27:81. (close)
a. 6:26; 17:48. (close)
b. 27:81. (close)
This and the following verses give the reason why disbelievers reject the truth. We are told that their rejection is not based on any sound ground or solid reason but is due only to their bigotry and perverseness. Disbelievers appear to listen to the Holy Prophet, but they listen merely with the intention of finding fault with him. The verse further says that even a deaf person who is otherwise intelligent may be made to understand a thing by means of signs but disbelievers are like a person who is both deaf and devoid of understanding. So they cannot be made to understand even by means of signs. (close)
وَ مِنۡہُمۡ مَّنۡ یَّنۡظُرُ اِلَیۡکَ ؕ اَفَاَنۡتَ تَہۡدِی الۡعُمۡیَ وَ لَوۡ کَانُوۡا لَا یُبۡصِرُوۡنَ ﴿۴۴﴾
وَمِنۡهُم مَّن يَنظُرُ إِلَيۡكَۚ أَفَأَنتَ تَهۡدِي ٱلۡعُمۡيَ وَلَوۡ كَانُواْ لَا يُبۡصِرُونَ
e. 7:199. (close)
1263. The disbelievers do not possess the perceptive understanding and intelligence. In the preceding verse, they were spoken of as devoid of 'understanding' in addition to their being devoid of 'the faculty of hearing,' and in the present verse they are spoken of as destitute of the 'perceptive faculty of the mind,' in addition to their being blind. (close)
c. 7:199. (close)
In this verse the expression لایبصرون (they see not) does not mean that disbelievers do not possess the faculty of sight, because a reference to this fact has already been made in the word "blind." What it means is that they do not also possess the perceptive faculty of the mind, i.e. understanding and intelligence. In the previous verse, disbelievers were spoken of as devoid of "understanding" in addition to their being devoid of "the faculty of hearing" and in the present verse they are spoken of as destitute of "perceptive faculty of the mind," in addition to their being blind. The two verses taken together thus point out that disbelievers cannot possibly find the right way when they are not only devoid of the power of hearing but also of spiritual sight.
The verse also implies that we should not judge others merely by their outward appearance. One judging only by appearance will be tempted to object why punishment does not seize the disbelievers at once. But God knows that there are among them some who are ultimately to become Muslims. On the other hand, there are some who appear as if they would accept the truth, but in spite of possessing ears they hear not and in spite of possessing eyes they see not, and always go on criticizing. But God knows who is going to believe and who not, and He knows also who deserves to be punished and who merits a good reward. So He has reserved to Himself the right when and whom to punish. This is how the present and the previous verses explain the words, thy Lord well knows those who act corruptly, occurring in v. 41. (close)
اِنَّ اللّٰہَ لَا یَظۡلِمُ النَّاسَ شَیۡئًا وَّ لٰکِنَّ النَّاسَ اَنۡفُسَہُمۡ یَظۡلِمُوۡنَ ﴿۴۵﴾
إِنَّ ٱللَّهَ لَا يَظۡلِمُ ٱلنَّاسَ شَيۡـٔٗا وَلَٰكِنَّ ٱلنَّاسَ أَنفُسَهُمۡ يَظۡلِمُونَ
a. 4:41; 9:70; 18:50; 30:10. (close)
a. 4:41; 9:70; 18:50; 30:10. (close)
This verse forms a fitting sequel to the preceding ones. It says that God Who has sent the Prophet and should, on account of his rejection by disbelievers, naturally be disposed to inflict swift punishment on them, is granting them respite and does not desire to punish them soon, but disbelievers themselves demand a speedy punishment. God does not wish to do wrong to them, i.e. He does not like to destroy them while there is yet time for them to repent and accept guidance, but they themselves demand punishment and thus wrong their own souls.
This verse also furnishes an explanation of all such verses from which some people conclude that men are prevented from accepting guidance because they are predestined to be misguided and that it is God Who makes men commit all the sins they commit. All such conclusions are based on the supposition that God acts unjustly towards His creatures. The present verse contradicts this baseless supposition by expressly stating that God never acts unjustly towards His creatures. On the contrary, He affords them all possible opportunities to accept the truth. (close)