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Select Translation What is This? Selections include: The Koran Interpreted, a translation by A.J. Arberry, first published 1955; The Qur'an, translated by M.A.S. Abdel Haleem, published 2004; or side-by-side comparison view
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The Koran Interpreted Translation by A.J. Arberry

21 THE PROPHETS (95 – 112)

The Qurʾan Translation by M.A.S. Abdel Haleem

21. The Prophets (92 – 112)

There is a ban upon any city that We have destroyed; they shall not return till, when Gog and Magog are unloosed, and they slide down out of every slope, and nigh has drawn the true promise, and behold, the eyes of the unbelievers staring: ‘Alas for us! We were heedless of this; nay, we were evildoers.’ ‘Surely you, and that you were serving apart from God, are fuel for Gehenna; you shall go down to it.’ If those had been gods, they would never have gone down to it; yet every one of them shall therein abide forever; 100there shall be sighing for them therein, and naught they shall hear.

But as for those unto whom already the reward most fair has gone forth from Us, they shall be kept far from it neither shall they hear any whisper of it, and they shall dwell forever in that their souls desired; the greatest terror shall not grieve them, and the angels shall receive them: ‘This is your day that you were promised.’ On the day when We shall roll up heaven as a scroll is rolled for the writings; as We originated the first creation, so We shall bring it back again—a promise binding on Us; so We shall do. 105For We have written in the Psalms, after the Remembrance, ‘The earth shall be the inheritance of My righteous servants.’ Surely in this is a Message delivered unto a people who serve.

We have not sent thee, save as a mercy unto all beings. Say: ‘It is revealed unto me only that your God is One God; do you then surrender?’ Then, if they should turn their backs, say: ‘I have proclaimed to you all equally, even though I know not whether near or far is that you are promised.’

110Surely He knows what is spoken aloud and He knows what you hide. I know not; haply it is a trial for you and an enjoyment for a time.

He said: ‘My Lord, judge Thou with truth! And our Lord is the All-merciful; His succour is ever to be sought against that you describe.’

92[Messengers],e Cf. 23: 51–3. this community of yours is one single community and I am your Lord, so serve Me.93They have torn their unity apart, but they will all return to Us. 94If anyone does good deeds and is a believer, his efforts will not be ignored: We record them for him. 95No community destroyed by Us can escape its return,f Other interpretations are: ‘they will not return to the world’; ‘they will not turn away from their misdeeds’. 96and when the peoples of Gog and Magog are let loose and swarm swiftly from every highland, 97when the True Promise draws near, the disbelievers’ eyes will stare in terror, and they will say, ‘Woe to us! We were not aware of this at all. We were wrong.’ 98You [disbelievers] and what you worship instead of God will be fuel for Hell: that is where you will go— 99if these [idols] had been real gods they would not have gone there—you will all stay there. 100There the disbelievers will be groaning piteously, but the [idols] will hear nothing.

101But those for whom We have decreed Paradise will be kept far from Hell—102they will not hear a murmur from it—and endlessly they will enjoy everything their souls desire. 103They will have no fear of the great Terror:a The Day of Judgement. the angels will receive them with the words, ‘This is the Day you were promised!’ 104On that Day, We shall roll up the skies as a writer rolls up [his] scrolls. We shall reproduce creation just as We produced it the first time: this is Our binding promise. We shall certainly do all these things.

105We wrote in the Psalms, as We did in [earlier] Scripture: ‘My righteous servants will inherit the earth.’106There truly is a message in this for the servants of God! 107It was only as a mercy that We sent you [Prophet] to all people. b Or ‘We sent you [Prophet] only as a mercy to all people’. 108Say, ‘What is revealed to me is that your God is one God—will you submit to Him?’ 109But if they turn away, say, ‘I have proclaimed the message fairly to you all. I do not know whether the judgement you are promised is near or far, 110but He knows what you reveal and conceal. 111I do not know: this [time] may well be a test for you, and enjoyment for a while.’ 112He said,c See note to verse 4. ‘My Lord, pass the true judgement.’ And, ‘Our Lord is the Lord of Mercy. We seek His assistance against what you [disbelievers] say.’

Notes:

e Cf. 23: 51–3.

f Other interpretations are: ‘they will not return to the world’; ‘they will not turn away from their misdeeds’.

a The Day of Judgement.

b Or ‘We sent you [Prophet] only as a mercy to all people’.

c See note to verse 4.

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