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Monthly Qur'an Readings

Session 19

Chapter 25: The Differentiator (Surah Al-Furqan) - Continued…

In the name of God, the God of Mercy, the Endower of Mercy!

Verses 21 - 31

Those who wish not to meet God, say, “Why have not angels been sent to us?” or “Why do we not see God?” They are too proud of themselves and engage in a great revolt! Yet on the day when they will meet angels (for real), there will be no good outcome for the wicked. They (angels) will say, “There is a strong barrier (between wicked and good people)!” We (God) will account for what they have done and render them insignificant as dust, while the residents of the Garden will reside in a better home and a nicer place to rest!

On the day when the sky and the cloud will split angels will be sent, and they will descend. The sovereignty of Beneficent God will be fully manifest, and it will be a difficult day for the deniers. The wicked will bite their hands and say, “I wish I had taken the path aligned with the Messenger! Shame on me that I had taken such one as a friend instead, who led me away from the Reminder after it was brought to me.” The devil always betrays humankind!

The Messenger has said, “My Sustainer God, these, my people, treat this Qur’an like a thing forsaken!” This is how God makes for every prophet an enemy from among the wicked, while your God is sufficient as a Guide and as a Helper!

Verses 32 - 40

The deniers say, “Why has not this Qur’an been revealed all at once?” God does it this way to strengthen your heart and to arrange and reveal in a gradual manner to be effective. See they cannot ask a question, but We bring out and expound the truth and offer the best of explanations!

These will be gathered on their faces and driven to Hell – they are too deep in wickedness and have gone too far from the right path!

God gave Moses the Scripture (The Torah) and We designated his brother Aaron as an aid for him. Then We said, “Go to the people who deny Our messages.” Then We destroyed those people as deserved. The people of Noah – they rejected the messenger - We drowned them and made them a lesson for humankind. For those who are wicked and unjust, a terrifying destruction is pre-ordained as was evident for Ad, Thamud, the inhabitants of Al-Rass and generations in between. To each We gave examples with warnings and each We treated with destruction as ordained. Certainly, they pass these towns which were rained with destructions. What! They don’t see it. Perhaps they think they will not be raised again!

Verses 41 - 52

Whenever they encounter you, they ridicule you – “Is this the man whom God had appointed as a messenger? He had almost gotten us away from our gods, but we adhered patiently to our belief.” But they will realize – once the consequence is upon them – who is more deviant from the path! Aren’t these the ones who have taken their desires and passion for their gods? You are in no way a guardian for them. Do you think they care to understand or hear? They are like cattle, or perhaps worse in their deviation from the path.

Do you see how God stretches the shades? If He wills, He can make it stay constant, but the sun is the cause of it and We draw it to Ourselves little by little. It is God Who makes the night a cover for you, to sleep for rest and then brings the day as a new rising. It is God Who send winds as glad tiding before His mercy – pure rain waters pouring down from the clouds, that He may give life to a land that appears as dead, giving drinks for the cattle and people God had created. Certainly, We repeat these messages to them so that they may be mindful, but most of humankind are prone to denying. Had it been God’s will, He would have sent a warner in every town!

Therefore, do not follow the disbelievers! Strive1 against them with a strenuous striving!

Verses 53 - 59

God is the One who makes two bodies of water flow freely, one fresh and sweet and the other bitter and salty and between them, He put a barrier – a secure separation! God is the One who created humankind from water and made for them relationships based on family and marriage. Your God is Able! (v52-54)

They serve others but ALLAH – others who can neither benefit them or harm them! Such disbelievers are ever prone to marginalize God, while We sent you (Prophet) to give good news and to warn. Say: “I wish nothing in return except that you find a way to your God and that you put your trust and reliance on the Ever-Living God, Who does not die and that you exult God. God alone is sufficient in knowing the failings of the His creation!2 God Who created the heavens and the earth in six stages and assumed control on the Throne of Power, being Beneficent (to his creation)! Therefore, inquire from those who know.

Verses 60 - 69

When they are reminded, “Be obedient to the God of Mercy.” They say, “What is this God of Mercy? Are we going to obey just because you (Prophet) tell us so?”, only adding to their aversions.

Blessed is the God who established stars in heavens and placed the sun and the moon giving lights! God is the One Who makes the day and the night to alternate each other, so that one may be mindful, one may be thankful!

The true servants of God are those who walk on this earth with humility and when people, devoid of knowledge, address them (harshly), they say, “Peace”. They spend the night in devotion to God – standing and bowing down, and plead, “O our Sustainer God, spare us the chastisement of hell – the torment of which is a lasting evil – an evil place and an evil residence!”

They, when they spend, they are neither extravagant nor niggardly -always following a middle path.

They do not (1) invoke any other deity with God, nor (2) slay a soul, which God has forbidden, except in the cause of justice, nor (3) commit adultery. Whoever does such things will meet appropriate reprisals – double the punishment on the day of resurrection – living in humiliation and torment!

Verses 70 - 77

But saved are those who repent, reaffirm their belief, and do good, God will replace their evils with good – ALLAH is Forgiving, Merciful! Whoever repents and does good – that is truly the real turning back to God. They give no false witness, and when they see vanity, they remain aloof and noble. They aspire, “Our God, make our spouses and our children a source of joy for us and make us a role model for those who act responsibly.”

They will be rewarded with highest achievements because of their constancy and patience and met with congratulations and peace! A grand outcome and a beautiful resting place to live in! (v75-76)

Say: “What are you without devotion to God? Indeed, you have confirmed your denials; so, wait for the inevitable!”

Chapter 26: The Poets (Surah Al-Shu’ara)

In the name of God, the God of Mercy, the Endower of Mercy!

Verses 1 - 9

Twa, Sin, Meem!

These are the verses of the book that makes things clear!

Perhaps you will grieve yourself to death that these people do not believe!

Had We intended, We could have send a sign from heaven such that their necks will bow to it in humility. Whenever a new revelation comes to them from the God of Mercy, they turn away and reject – so the consequence of their mockery will reach them soon!

Do they not see that on this earth We cause to grow so many wholesome things – these are the signs, yet most of them are deniers? But your God is Mighty, Merciful!

Verses 10 - 22

(Remember) when God called upon Moses, “Go to the people who are corrupt – the people of Pharaoh. Why do they not abstain from evil works? Moses said, “God, I am afraid that they will reject me. I feel stressed and my speech becomes unconvincing – so let Aaron come as well. They also have a charge against me, and I am afraid they will kill me.”

God said, “No way! You both go with Our signs. We are with you, and We do hear!

They came to Pharaoh and said, “We are messengers from the God of the Universe! Let the Children of Israel go with us.”

Pharaoh said, “Did we not raise you as a child? You did spend a lifetime with us. Then you committed that crime. You are surely ungrateful.”

Moses said, “I did those during a time when I was not properly guided. So, I fled since I was afraid. Now my Sustainer God empowered me with wisdom and assigned me as a messenger. What is that favor that you remind me of – that you have enslaved the Children of Israel?”

Verses 23 - 33

Pharaoh said, “What do you mean by this ‘God of the Universe’?”

Moses said, “God of the heavens and the earth, and what is in-between, if you really want to be certain.”

Pharaoh turned to those of his close associate, “Do you understand?”

Moses said, “God of yours and of your forefathers!”

Pharaoh said, “Surely this messenger sent to you is out of his mind.”

Moses said, “God of the East and the West, if you really care to use your senses.”

Pharaoh said, “If you take any god other than me, I will put you in prison.”

Moses said, “How about if I show you evidence (of my assertions)?”

Pharaoh said, “Show me if you speak the truth.”

Moses cast down his walking stick and lo, it was a serpent alive! And he brought forth his hand and lo and behold, it appeared white to the viewers!

Verses 34 - 51

(Pharaoh) said to the chiefs around him, “He is a skilled magician and wishes to drive you out of this land with his magic. What is your advice?” They said, “Give Moses and his brother some time while we convene all skilled magicians.”

All the magicians were gathered on a festive day for the appointment and people were called to witness and follow the magician if they were to prevail. The magicians came and said to Pharaoh, “Will there be a reward for us, if we prevail?” He replied, “Yes, you will be favored.”

Moses said to them, “Cast your magic if you will.” They cast their ropes and rods and said, “By the power of Pharaoh, we shall prevail.” Then Moses cast down his rod and it swallowed all their falsity. The magicians fell to the ground prostrating. They said, “We believe in the Sustainer God of the worlds—God of Moses and Aaron.”

Pharaoh said, “Do you believe in Him without my permission? He (Moses) must be the chief amongst you who taught you magic. You will know soon—I will cut off your hands and feet from opposite sides and crucify you.” They replied, “you can do no harm, as we turn to our 

Sustainer God. We hope our Sustainer God will forgive our evils because we are the first to believe.”

Verses 52 - 68

And We [God] revealed to Moses: “Travel by night with My servants (Children of Israel)—you will indeed be pursued. Pharaoh sent deputies across the cities proclaiming, “These are a small band of people who had enraged us while we are a multitude and vigilant.” This is how We expelled them from their gardens and springs, their wealth and their grand dwellings and gave this (exodus) as a heritage to the Children of Israel.

They pursued them at sunrise. When the two groups came to each other’s view, the people around Moses cried out, “We are overtaken.” Moses said, “No way! My Sustainer God is by me; He will guide me.” We [God] revealed to Moses, “March to the sea (and strike) with your staff. The sea parted and each side was like a mountain, towering over. We then brought them near but saved Moses and those with him, while We drowned the others. This is a sign (from God) but most refused to accept. Your Sustainer God is Mighty, Merciful!

Verses 69 - 87

And relate to them the story of Abraham when he said to his father and his community, “What do you worship?” They said: “We worship idols, and we remain ever devoted to them.”

Abraham replied, “When you ask, do they hear you? Or, do they do any benefit or harm for you?” They said, “No, but we found our forefathers doing the same.”

He said, “Do you not realize what you and your forefathers are doing? Surely, these (idols) are enemies to me whereas the Lord of the World is not—Who created me and then guides me; Who gives me food and drinks; Who heals me when I am sick; Who will cause me to die and then raise me back to life; Who will, I hope forgive me and my mistakes on the Day of Judgement.”

He then prayed, “My Sustainer God, grant me wisdom and align me with the righteous. And establish for me a genuine remembrance by later generations. Make me to inherit the Garden of Tranquility. Forgive my father as he is one of those who have made mistakes. May You not disgrace me on the day of resurrection.”

Verses 88 - 104

The day when neither wealth nor children will benefit, except who comes to God with a heart5 complete with knowledge, wisdom, devotion and without doubt.

The Garden is brought near to those who acted responsibly, while the Hell is made visible to those who were misguided. They will be addressed thus, “Where are those that you worshipped besides ALLAH? Can they help you or even themselves?”

They - false deities and the misguided - will be thrown into Hell, and so will be the Devil and his associates. They will quarrel therein and say to one another, “By God, we were truly misguided! We made you (false deities) equal to the God of the Universe! It is those who were steeped in evil led us astray. Now we have no one who can intercede, nor a true friend. Only if we could but return, we will certainly become believers.”

Indeed, these narratives are evidence for them, yet most of them choose to deny. Your God is Mighty, and an Endower of Mercy!

Verses 105 – 122

The people of Noah also rejected the messengers. When Noah, their brother said to them, “Will you not align with God? I am a messenger to you, worthy of trust. Act responsibly and obey me. I am not here to seek any benefits from you, my reward is with the God of the Universe. Will you be mindful of God and listen to me?

They said, “Shall we believe in you, while only the worst among us follow you?”

Noah said, “What knowledge do I have as to what they did? Their accountability is with none but God alone, if you could perceive. I am not going to drive away any who believe. I am here to deliver a clear warning.”

They replied, “Noah, if you do not stop, we will stone you to death.”

He prayed, “My Sustainer, my people had denied me. Judge between us and them as you see fit and give safe passage to me and those with me.”

We (God) delivered them to safety on a loaded Ark and drowned the rest.

Indeed, these narratives are evidence for them, yet most of them choose to deny. Your God is Mighty, and an Endower of Mercy!

Verses 123 - 140

People of ‘Ad also denied their messengers.

Hud, their brother said to them, “Will you not align with God? I am a messenger to you, worthy of trust. Act responsibly and obey me. I am not here to seek any benefits from you, my reward is with the God of the Universe. Why do you build monuments in every high places showing you vanity; build fortresses hoping to be secure forever and when you attack, you act like tyrants. Be mindful of ALLAH and follow me. Align with the One Who aids you and you know it well – cattle, children, gardens, and fountains – you are provided with. I am afraid of the consequences on a terrible day!”

They said, “It is the same to us whether you warn us or not. Our way is no more than what our forefathers did and we will not face any adverse consequences.” This is how they rejected him and as a result We (God) destroyed them.

Indeed, these narratives are evidence for them, yet most of them choose to deny. Your God is Mighty, and an Endower of Mercy!

Verses 141 - 159

People of Thamud also denounced their messengers as liars. Their brother Salih said to them, “Will you not act responsibly? I am a messenger, trustworthy! Show your devotion to God and listen to me. I am not here to ask for any reward from you, my reward is with the Owner of the Worlds! Do you consider yourself well established in your gardens and fountains, your corn fields and palm trees laden with corn and fruits, and fine houses you build into the mountain side? Again, I ask that you align with God and obey me, and do not follow the biddings of those whose greed, lust and corruption knows no limit and who make mischiefs on earth and do not act with goodness.”

They said, “You are anything but delusional! You are only a mortal like us. Bring us a proof if you claim to be truthful.”

He said, “Here is the she-camel. She will have her drinks and you will have your drinks on days pre-assigned. Do not touch her with any harm if you wish to avoid the calamity that will descend on you.”

But they hamstrung her and then regretted as soon as the chastisement overtook them.

Indeed, these narratives are evidence for them, yet most of them choose to deny. Your God is Mighty, and an Endower of Mercy!

Verses 160 - 175

The people of Lot denounced the messengers as a liar. Their brother Lot said to them, “Will you not act responsibly? I am a messenger, trustworthy! Show your devotion to God and listen to me. I am not here to ask for any reward from you, my reward is with the Owner of the

Worlds! How do you lust after males, while you have wives whom God had made your rightful partners? You are a people crossing all boundaries.”

They said, “if you do not stop, we will expel you.”

He said, “I detest what you do. May God give us safe passage from your evils – me and my followers.?”

We (God) gave safe passage to him and to all his followers, except an old lady who remained behind. We destroyed them – We rained a destructive rain over them - how awful that rain was on those who had been duly warned.

Indeed, these narratives are evidence for them, yet most of them choose to deny. Your God is Mighty, and an Endower of Mercy!

Verses 176 - 191

The forest-dwellers also denied their messengers.

Shu’aib said to them, “Will you not act responsibly? I am a messenger, trustworthy! Show your devotion to ALLAH and listen to me. I am not here to ask for any reward from you, my reward is with the Owner of the Worlds! Give what is due and do not be of those who sell others short! Use proper measures – a true balance! Do not act unjustly regarding the dues of others and do not spread corruption on earth, making mischief. Be mindful and stand in awe of God, Who created you and former generations!”7

They said, “You are but delusional! You are just a mortal like us, and we deem you to be a liar. If you speak the truth, then let a portion of the sky fall on us.” Shu’aib said, “My God knows best your doings!”

But they rejected him, and the Day of Covering descended on them with its chastisement. It was a day of terrifying consequences with grievous torments.

Indeed, these narratives are evidence for them, yet most of them choose to deny. Your God is Mighty, and an Endower of Mercy!

Verses 192 - 209

This indeed is a revelation from the God of the Universe, brought by the Faithful Spirit8, to your heart that you (Prophet) may caution using plain Arabic dialect – a matter foretold in previous scriptures9.

Is it not evidence to them that the learned Jewish men attest to this? If We had revealed it to a non-Arab and he were to recite it to them, they would not have believed in it. This is how We cause the hearts of the wicked to receive it – they do not believe until they see the awful chastisement. It comes to them suddenly, while they were lest expecting it.

They will say, “Can we be given more time?”, instead of demanding that such chastisement to be brought sooner (as they did before). See how We let them enjoy for years and then when the promised consequences catch up with them, they are no longer able to enjoy themselves.

We (God) never destroy a town without the benefit of its warner who reminds them. We are never unfair and unjust!

Verses 210 - 227

The devils (including jinns) did not bring down this revelation – it is unfitting for them, and they have no such authority – they are far removed from even hearing it. Therefore, do not associate anyone with ALLAH, lest you become subject to such chastisement.

(Prophet) Warn your closest kins and tribes and be gentle to those who follow you. But if they disobey, then say, “I am not accountable for your conducts.”, and rely on God Almighty, God of Mercy, Who sees you when stand up (for worship) and your movements with those who worship as well. God is full of Hearing and Knowing!

Shall We (God) inform you (Prophet) as to who is touched by the devil – it is the liar and sinful who listens (to evils) and most of them lie and deny (the truth). And so many poets - who wanders across the valleys and say things they do not do themselves - attract such deviators but not those who believe, are mindful of God and defend their rights when faced with oppression. Those who do wrong will know (soon) their final turn to their destiny.

Chapter 27: The Ants (Surah Al-Naml)

In the name of God, the God of Mercy, the Endower of Mercy!

Verses 1 - 12

Twa Sin!

These are the verses from the Qur’an – a book that explains. It guides and enlightens the believers who devote themselves to worship, take care of the needy and are convinced of the Hereafter.

Those who show doubt in the Hereafter, ALLAH make them love their conducts and deeds, so they wonder about blindly. They are destined for the chastisement for their evils and in the Hereafter, they will lose it all!

Indeed you (Prophet) receive this Qur’an from the Wise and Knowing (God)!

(Remember) when Moses said to his family, “I see a fire. May be I can bring something good or a burning brand so that you can warm yourself.”

When he came near to it, a voice called out, “Blessed is the one who is in search of fire and those around it. Exulted is God, the Sustainer and Cherisher of the Universe! Moses, I am God, the Almighty, the Wise! Cast down your walking stick.”

When he saw it live and in motion as if a serpent, he turned back, retreated with no desire to come back. “Moses, don’t be afraid. Messengers should have no fear in My Presence! Nor those who does wrong, but return to goodness after their evils, since I am Forgiving, Compassionate! Put your hand next to your bosom, it will turn out white without any blemish - signs among nine others for Pharaoh and his people. Indeed, they are deep in corruption!”

Verses 13 - 19

When the clear evidence was presented to them, they (Pharaoh) said, “This is sure sorcery.” They stood in opposition, out of pride and injustice to themselves, while their souls understood the signs as true. Consider then, what was the end of those who are corrupt?

We (God) gave knowledge and wisdom to David and Solomon. They both acknowledged, “God be exulted, Who has favored us above many of God’s faithful servants.” Solomon, David’s heir, said, “People, we have been taught the speech of birds, and gifted with many other things. These are explicit favors (from God)”, while hosts of jinn, men and birds gather around Solomon, in their respective groups and ranks.

As they approached the valley of the ants, a she-ant said, “Ants, retreat into your ant hills, lest Solomon and his troops crush you without knowing.” Solomon smiled, hearing her words (of the ant), and prayed, “God, inspire me to be thankful for blessings you have granted me and my parents; that I may do good that will please You, and count me among those who are the receivers of Your Mercy, from among your faithful servants.”

Verses 20 - 35

Solomon surveyed the birds (in his assembly) and said, “How is it I do not see Hudhud, is he absent? If he does not bring a convincing excuse, I will either punish him or kill him.” Hudhud appeared soon thereafter, and said, “I have witnessed something that you are yet to witness – I just came from the land of Sheba with convincing information about a woman, who rules over them, haven been gifted with everything and sits on a magnificent throne! But she and her people worship the sun, rather than ALLAH. The Devil has made it alluring to them such practices and turned them from the right path; so, they have gone astray. How is it that they do not worship God, Who brings forth what is hidden in the heavens and on earth, and Who knows what one hides and what one proclaims? God, there is no god but God, established on the Magnificent Throne of Power!”10

Solomon said, “We shall see if you speak the truth or if you are lying. Take this letter from me and hand it over to them, then wait and see how they respond.”

She (Queen Sheba) said, “My Counsellors, a gracious letter has been delivered to me. It is from Solomon and begins with the name of God, the God of Mercy, the Endower of Mercy. It says, ‘Do not consider yourself above me and come to me with full submission to God.’”

She said, “Counsellors, advise me on this matter. I never make decisions without consulting you.” They said, “We are powerful, and we are a mighty nation, and you are in command. Consider what command you would like us to execute.” She said, “When kings enter a city, they ruin it and humiliate its nobles. Yes, this is how they behave! Let’s send them a present and see what our messengers brings back.”

Verses 36 - 40

When the envoy came to Solomon, he said, “Are you enticing me with wealth? What God had gifted me is better than what He has given you. Your present only demonstrate your arrogance. Take back your present. We will come with forces that they have no power to resist and we will expel them from their places in disgrace and lowliness.”

He then turned to his assembly, “Who can bring me her throne before they come to me in full submission to God?” Ifrit, the jinn, said, “I will bring it to you before you can rise from your throne. I am strong and fully capable.”

But one having knowledge from the scripture said, “I will bring it to you in the blink of an eye!” Instantly he saw it settled beside him!

Solomon said, “This is a blessing from my God to test me if I am grateful or not. Whoever is grateful is grateful for his own soul and whoever denies, then my God is Self-Sufficient, Generous!”

Verses 41 - 44

He said, “Disguise her throne when she arrives, and we shall see if she follows the right way or continues her own ways. When she arrived, she was asked, “Is your throne like this one?” She said, “It appears the same.”, and (Solomon said), “We were given the knowledge of it beforehand, and we are in full submission to God.” Her worship of others besides God prevented her (from comprehending what was said), and she indeed was a disbeliever (in God).

She was then invited, “Enter the Great Hall.” But when she saw it, she conceived it as a pool of water and pulled her dress up. Solomon said, “This hall is paved with smooth crystals.” She said, My God, I have deceived myself (in the past)11 and now I submit along with Solomon to the God of the universe!”

Verses 45 - 53

We sent Salih, their brother, to the people of Thamud. He said, “Serve God alone!” and they became two groups, contending. He said, “My People, why do you rush to do evil rather than good? Why do you not repent, seeking God’s mercy? They replied, “We see evil omen in you and your followers.”, while Salih said, “It is God who directs your sense of omen to try you.”

There were nine people in the city who were particularly mischievous and did not act properly in the land. They said to one another, “Let’s swear by God that we shall attack him (Salih) at night and then asserts to his family, “We did not witness his death and we speak the truth.”

This is how they planned, and God planned as well, which they did not perceive. Therefore, see what was the end result – We destroyed them and their people, altogether? Their houses were left to ruin because of their injustice and serve as reminders for those who wish to know and be mindful.

But We safeguarded those who believed and who acted responsibly!

Verses 54 - 60

(Similarly) Lot said to his people, “Why do you commit indecency in plain sight that you come after men with lust, instead of women? This is an act of people who are ignorant. The answer of his people was none but to say, “Let’s drive Lot and his people – they are a bunch who wish to keep themselves pure.”

We safeguarded Lot and his followers, except his wife whom We deemed to remain with those who faced ruins. We rained on them with a destructive rain as they had been warned (before).

Say (Prophet), “Praise be to ALLAH and peace be on the servants whom God had chosen”

Who is better – God or the partners they ascribe (with God)? Who creates the heavens and the earth and rains down water from clouds? We then cause luxuriant orchards to grow with such rains. Are you able to make the trees grow? Are there gods, other than God? No, they are a people who set up God’s equal without any basis!

***Excerpt from on-going translation of the Qur’an – Removing the Middleman Series, by Rashed Hasan. Copyright by Author***

July 2024

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