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Surah Taha (1)
Qur'anic Exegesis
Amin Ahsan Islahi
(Tr. by:Dr. Shehzad Saleem)


In this surah, the Prophet (sws) is urged to show patience on the attitude of his adversaries and to wait for God’s decision: if they do not listen to him, he should not worry for soon they will meet their fate. With this topic the surah begins and with it it ends as well. He has been directed to diligently pray and supplicate before God to attain this patience and to adhere to it. At the same time, the ills of impatience are explained. The whole of the surah addresses the Prophet (sws). If his adversaries are spoken to, it is in an indirect way without directly addressing them.

In the previous surah, many celebrated prophets of God are mentioned. In this one, however, only Moses (sws) is mentioned in detail. All important incidents of his life from his birth and migration are highlighted. The purpose is to provide guidance to the Prophet (sws) in his current phase of preaching and in the future ones also through a practical example.



The surah can be divided into three parts with respect to its meanings:

Verses (1-8): In a very affectionate way, the Prophet (sws) is directed to not over-stretch and burden himself in his concern for others to accept faith. His responsibility is to only remind those who have some fear in them. It is not his duty to make those accept faith who are devoid of fear. This Qur’an is not the petition or a request: it is the directive of the creator of the heavens and the earth and the whole universe, and the Prophet (sws) should present it in a manner worthy of it; he does not need to pamper the ingrates and arrogant people; he should trust His Lord Who knows all his hidden and open affairs.

Verses (9-98): The account of Moses (sws) is mentioned. Briefly put, following are its prominent aspects:

– Moses (sws) reaches the sacred valley of Tuwa after returning from Madyan and is blessed with prophethood.

– He receives his first directive after being made a prophet.

– God blesses him with the miracles of the staff and the white hand.

– He is given the directive of going to the Pharaoh to warn him. Mention of his supplication for inner satisfaction and for Aaron as a helper, and its immediate acceptance.

– To strengthen the heart of Moses (sws), it is stated how in his childhood he was shown special favour by God: he was cast into the river; God not only saved him but made his enemy and His own enemy rear and nurture him and ultimately took him to his mother. It was she who, in utmost distress, had consigned him to the waves of the river fearing the Pharaoh.

– The incident of killing of a Copt at the hands of Moses (sws) is mentioned. Moses (sws) then sets off to Madyan. After passing through various trials and tribulations there, he reaches the sacred valley of Tuwa in accordance with the divine plan and is chosen as a prophet.

– After this act of God’s favour is reminded, Moses (sws) and Aaron (sws) are encouraged that they should bravely go and warn the Pharaoh. God will protect them.

– Moses (sws) presents his message to the Pharaoh and the latter argues and debates with him.

– The contest between Moses (sws) and the magicians of the Pharaoh is mentioned. The latter are defeated and embrace faith.

– The Pharaoh accuses Moses (sws) and those who have professed faith in him of rebellion and threatens to kill them.

– Moses (sws) is directed to migrate from Egypt along with the Israelites and is pursued by the Pharaoh. Ultimately, Moses (sws) and the Israelites cross over the sea safely and the Pharaoh and his armies are drowned.

– The favours of God bestowed on the Israelites are recounted. In Moses’ absence of a few days in which he had gone to receive the Torah, the Israelites are afflicted with the trial of Samiri. As a result, they take to idol worship. Details of this incident are mentioned including its causes and consequences.

Verses (99-135): After the account of Moses (sws) is presented, these concluding verses address the Prophet (sws). The surah ends on the topic with which it began: he is assured that this anecdote of the past is not merely a past happening. It is actually his own anecdote as well. People have been warned from all aspects in the book given to him. If they do not accept it, they will bear its consequences both in this world and in the next. There are many lessons which these people can learn from history. For this reason, the Prophet (sws) should not show impatience in their matter and should patiently wait for God’s decision. Hastiness gives Satan a chance to play his mischief.  So the Prophet (sws) should patiently wait for God’s decision and diligently adhere to the prayer to acquire this patience. The Prophet (sws) should also not be worried about the faith of the rich thinking that this would strengthen his ranks. His preaching has its own resources and God has taken upon Himself to fulfil his financial needs. He should tell those who are demanding to see the punishment that his duty was only to inform them. If they now await this punishment, they should keep waiting; the Prophet (sws) too is waiting.


Section 1: Verses (1-8)

 Text and Translation

بِسۡمِ اللّٰهِ الرَّحۡمٰنِ الرَّحِیۡمِ

طٰهٰ (1) مَاۤ اَنۡزَلۡنَا عَلَیۡكَ الۡقُرۡاٰنَ لِتَشۡقٰۤی (2) اِلَّا تَذۡکِرَةً لِّمَنۡ یَّخۡشٰی (3) تَنۡزِیۡلًا مِّمَّنۡ خَلَقَ الۡاَرۡضَ وَ السَّمٰوٰتِ الۡعُلٰی (4) اَلرَّحۡمٰنُ عَلَی الۡعَرۡشِ اسۡتَوٰی (5) لَهُ مَا فِی السَّمٰوٰتِ وَ مَا فِی الۡاَرۡضِ وَ مَا بَیۡنَهُمَا وَ مَا تَحۡتَ الثَّرٰی (6) وَ اِنۡ تَجۡهَرۡ بِالۡقَوۡلِ فَاِنَّهُ یَعۡلَمُ السِّرَّ وَ اَخۡفٰی (7) اَللّٰهُ لَاۤ اِلٰهَ اِلَّا هُوَ لَهُ الۡاَسۡمَآءُ الۡحُسۡنٰی (8)

In the name of God, the Most-Gracious, the Ever-Merciful.

This is Surah Taha. We have not revealed this Qur’an to you to put you through difficulty. It is only a reminder for those who fear God. It has been revealed in a very thorough manner by the being Who created the earth and the lofty skies - The most Merciful Who sits on the throne of governance. Whatever is in the heavens and in the earth and whatever is in between and whatever is below the earth are under His control. (1-6)

Whether you speak openly or secretly; nothing is hidden from Him because He knows what is said secretly and what is even more hidden. He is God; there is no deity besides Him. All good names belong to Him. (7-8)



طٰهٰ (1) 1

These letters are from among the isolated letters. A detailed discussion on them can be seen under the first verse of Surah al-Baqarah.


مَاۤ اَنۡزَلۡنَا عَلَیۡكَ الۡقُرۡاٰنَ لِتَشۡقٰۤی (2)2

The Prophet (sws) has very affectionately been made to understand here that the extent of responsibility of preaching the Qur’an that he has taken upon himself and the burden he is bearing as a result is not required of him at all. His only responsibility is to communicate this Book to people. Those who have the ability to recognize the truth and a semblance of God’s fear will accept it. It is not his responsibility to force it down those who are devoid of this ability. He should not make his life miserable by doing this.

It has been explained at several instances in this book that when after exerting himself day and night to call people to the Qur’an, the Prophet (sws) saw that they still denied a very evident thing and in no way have a soft heart towards it, he was worried that perhaps he was lacking in effort. When he was be overcome with this feeling, his preaching efforts increased further and he would still feel dissatisfied after doing his utmost.

It is in background that the verse assures him. He should not go beyond the call of duty as he is not responsible for others to accept faith.


اِلَّا تَذۡکِرَةً لِّمَنۡ یَّخۡشٰی (3) 3

This verse explains the status of the Qur’an, the extent of the Prophet’s responsibility and also the type of people who would be influenced by it and those who would be deprived of it.

The word تَذۡکِرَۃً means “a reminder.” Obviously, what is reminded is always found within an addressee and that which he may have forgotten and cannot be something brought from outside. Deliberation on the Qur’an shows that its purpose too is precisely the same. It is not something strange or unique and does not impose anything from outside on us. It actually reminds us of the facts already found in our nature that we may have become indifferent to. The arguments which the Qur’an employs to remind us are drawn from the world inside and outside us and which our intellect readily understands. However, either we do not use them or evade their obvious consequences. The history which the Qur’an has presented to teach its addressees and make them learn a lesson is one which they are already aware of. The teachings of the prophets it refers to are the ones which these addressees claimed to be the progeny and followers of.

The verse states that only those will benefit from this who fear (لِمَنۡ یَّخۡشٰی ). The grammatical object of the verb یَخۡشٰی is suppressed. If parallel verses of the Qur’an are kept in consideration, then the whole sentence would be to the effect: لِمَنۡ یَّخۡشٰی رَبَّهُ بِالْغيْبِ (it is a reminder for those fear their Lord in spite of not seeing Him).

In other words, this is the same as what is said in verse 2 of Surah al-Baqarah (هُدًی لِّلۡمُتَّقِینَ). I have explained it there that piety and fear is found in every person whose nature has not been perverted. If such people become indifferent, they are awakened from their slumber by reminders of the Qur’an. As for those who pervert their natures because of their misdeeds, no amount of shaking can awaken them. The only logic that they can understand is the logic of force which animals understand. They want to believe after seeing things through their naked eyes. However, before God, the only belief that has weight is one which is acknowledged through intellect and not through observation.

If the Qur’an is a reminder, then it follows that the task of the Prophet (sws) is reminding people and not forcing them to believe. His obligation is to only remind people of the lesson they have forgotten. Whether they actually are reminded or not is the responsibility of the people and not his.

In other words, the verse under discussion stresses the fact that if people do not benefit from the Prophet’s reminders, he should not worry. It is they who are responsible for this behaviour and not he.


تَنۡزِیۡلًا مِّمَّنۡ خَلَقَ الۡاَرۡضَ وَ السَّمٰوٰتِ الۡعُلٰی (4)4

The word تَنۡزِیۡل means to reveal something in a thorough and gradual manner. The implication is that since this Qur’an has been revealed to remind people, the Almighty did not content Himself to just giving it to people in one go so that what is meant to be presented to them is done so in some way or the other. On the contrary, He has revealed it in episodes in a very painstaking way so that they are not left with any excuse that were not able to understand it

The words “by the being Who created the earth and the lofty skies” point to the exalted nature of the Qur’an by referring to the majesty of the Being Who revealed it. It is not something that can be dismissed because it has no basis. It is also not a request of a petitioner so that if it is accepted, it would be a favour to him and if it is not, then he would be deprived. In fact, it is the directive of the creator of the heavens and the earth that has to be followed. If people reject it, they should fully contemplate the consequences.

There is an indication in this for the Prophet (sws) that he should present this Book to people the way the words of the Creator and Master of the heavens and the earth should be presented. Neither should he console and reassure them nor force or pressurize them. If they accept it, they themselves are the beneficiaries and not God. It is not a meek request; it is in fact a scripture of guidance for people. Those who reject it, will face its grave consequence and not harm the Prophet (sws) in any way.

This topic is discussed in the Qur’an at various instances. Thus, for example in Surah ‘Abas, it is stated:


کَلَّاۤ اِنَّهَا تَذۡکِرَةٌ فَمَنۡ شَآءَ ذَکَرهُ فِیۡ صُحُفٍ مُّکَرَّمَةٍ مَّرۡفُوۡعَةٍ مُّطَهَّرَةٍ بِاَیۡدِیۡ سَفَرَةٍ کِرَامٍۭ بَرَرَةٍ. )80: 11- 16)

Certainly not! This is but a reminder; so whoever wishes, can benefit from it. It is in esteemed pages, exalted and untouched, in the custody of scribes, honourable and faithful. (80: 11-16)


اَلرَّحۡمٰنُ عَلَی الۡعَرۡشِ اسۡتَوٰی (5) لَهُ مَا فِی السَّمٰوٰتِ وَ مَا فِی الۡاَرۡضِ وَ مَا بَیۡنَهُمَا وَ مَا تَحۡتَ الثَّرٰی (6)5

This verse mentions the exaltedness of the Qur’an and states the attributes of the Almighty which are reflected in this Book. He is the creator of the heavens and the earth. It is a requisite of His mercy that He not leave His creatures to themselves after creating them. Thus, it is essential that just as He has arranged for the fulfilment of their material needs, He also provides them with guidance. Hence, He has blessed them with intellect and intuition and revealed this Book as a further favour. This fact is also alluded to in the initial verses of Surah al-Rahman thus: اَلرَّحۡمٰنُ.عَلَّمَ الۡقُرۡاٰنَ.[6]

The implication is that today people who reject the Qur’an are not harming God or His Messenger in any way. In fact, they are depriving themselves of the greatest mercy of God.

The words “Who sits on the throne of governance” point to an attribute of the Almighty: He did not become aloof after creating the world; He is in fact running its affairs. He is the real sovereign of this universe. For this reason, He has informed people of His directives and laws through the Qur’an. After this awareness, people who still do not listen will meet their fate on the day of accountability.

The words “whatever is in the heavens and in the earth and whatever is in between and whatever is below the earth are under His control” are meant to uproot the seed of polytheism from its roots: there is no part of this universe that is beyond God’s control and jurisdiction. If someone has freedom in some sphere, then that too is because of God’s design and plan. Thus a person should not think that he can escape from God or there is anyone besides Him who can given him refuge.


وَ اِنۡ تَجۡهَرۡ بِالۡقَوۡلِ فَاِنَّهُ یَعۡلَمُ السِّرَّ وَ اَخۡفٰی (7)7

In accordance with the principles of eloquent Arabic, parallel portions of the verse are suppressed because of concomitant indications. Ie: وَ اِنۡ تَجۡهَرۡ بِالۡقَوۡلِ أَوْ تُخَافِت بِهَ فَاِنَّہٗ یَعۡلَمُ الجَهْرَ وَالسِّرَّ وَ اَخۡفٰی (and whether you say anything openly or secretly, He knows what is open, the hidden and what is even more hidden).

In this verse, the Prophet (sws) is assured from another angle: all his pleadings to God are heard by Him in whatever state he utters them. The purpose is to let him know the consequence of this fact: when his Lord is aware of all his secrets, his path would be eased by Him and he will be provided guidance from Him at every step. If there is a delay in any matter, it is because of a certain reason and benefit and it is actually for his own betterment. For more details, readers may look up what I have written while explaining verse 64 of Surah Maryam.


اَللّٰهُ لَاۤ اِلٰهَ اِلَّا هُوَ لَهُ الۡاَسۡمَآءُ الۡحُسۡنٰی (8)8

This verse directs the Prophet (sws) to completely rely on God and not go out of the way in reforming his enemies and worry himself. There is no god but God and in His presence, he does not need anyone.

The words “all good names belong to Him” are a treasure trove of assurance for the Prophet (sws). The assurance sounded to him in the previous verses is given in the light of the consequences of His exaltedness, His mercy, His sovereignty, His oneness and His knowledge. Yet these are not the only attributes of God. He possesses all good and lofty attributes. So, obviously the consequences of these attributes will manifest themselves for the Prophet (sws) in accordance with his circumstances. In other words, glad tidings are given to the Prophet (sws) in this part of the verse that all good attributes belong to God and they protect everyone. Whichever among them he seeks support of, he will gain its blessings and benefits. He does not need any support except them.

All scholars agree that here “names of God” actually refer to His attributes because His names actually express His attributes.


Section II: Verses (9-98)

 In the previous section, the Prophet (sws) has been assured through the attributes of God. Coming up is the account of Moses (sws) in which this assurance and facts mentioned academically in the previous section are stated through a living example. In this anecdote, details of how God helped him in the trials he passed through before and after becoming a messenger are stated. A greater part of the phases which the Prophet (sws) still had to go through were unknown to him at that time. This anecdote reflects those phases before him and also indicates to him the preparations needed. The impact of living examples is unparalleled. In particular, the anecdote of a prophet for another is like is own biography.

Readers may proceed to study these verses in the light of this background.


Text and Translation

وَ هَلۡ اَتٰىكَ حَدِیۡثُ مُوۡسٰی (9) اِذۡ رَاٰ نَارًا فَقَالَ لِاَهۡلِهِ امۡکُثُوۡۤا اِنِّیۡۤ اٰنَسۡتُ نَارًا لَّعَلِّیۡ اٰتِیۡکُمۡ مِّنۡهَا بِقَبَسٍ اَوۡ اَجِدُ عَلَی النَّارِ هُدًی (10) فَلَمَّاۤ اَتٰىهَا نُوۡدِیَ یٰمُوۡسٰی (11) اِنِّیۡ اَنَا رَبُّكَ فَاخۡلَعۡ نَعۡلَیۡكَ اِنَّكَ بِالۡوَادِ الۡمُقَدَّسِ طُوًی (12) وَ اَنَا اخۡتَرۡتُكَ فَاسۡتَمِعۡ لِمَا یُوۡحٰی (13) اِنَّنِیۡ اَنَا اللّٰهُ لَاۤ اِلٰهَ اِلَّاۤ اَنَا فَاعۡبُدۡنِیۡ وَ اَقِمِ الصَّلٰوةَ لِذِکۡرِیۡ (14) اِنَّ السَّاعَةَ اٰتِیَةٌ اَکَادُ اُخۡفِیۡهَا لِتُجۡزٰی کُلُّ نَفۡسٍۭ بِمَا تَسۡعٰی (15) فَلَا یَصُدَّنَّكَ عَنۡهَا مَنۡ لَّا یُؤۡمِنُ بِهَا وَ اتَّبَعَ هَوٰىهُ فَتَرۡدٰی (16) وَ مَا تِلۡكَ بِیَمِیۡنِكَ یٰمُوۡسٰی (17) قَالَ هِیَ عَصَایَ اَتَوَکَّؤُا عَلَیۡهَا وَ اَهُشُّ بِهَا عَلٰی غَنَمِیۡ وَ لِیَ فِیۡهَا مَاٰرِبُ اُخۡرٰی (18) قَالَ اَلۡقِهَا یٰمُوۡسٰی (19) فَاَلۡقٰهَا فَاِذَا هِیَ حَیَّةٌ تَسۡعٰی (20) قَالَ خُذۡهَا وَ لَا تَخَفۡ سَنُعِیۡدُهَا سِیۡرَتَهَا الۡاُوۡلٰی (21) وَ اضۡمُمۡ یَدَكَ اِلٰی جَنَاحِكَ تَخۡرُجۡ بَیۡضَآءَ مِنۡ غَیۡرِ سُوۡٓءٍ اٰیَةً اُخۡرٰی (22) لِنُرِیَكَ مِنۡ اٰیٰتِنَا الۡکُبۡرٰی (23) اِذۡهَبۡ اِلٰی فِرۡعَوۡنَ اِنَّهُ طَغٰی (24) قَالَ رَبِّ اشۡرَحۡ لِیۡ صَدۡرِیۡ (25) وَ یَسِّرۡ لِیۡ اَمۡرِیۡ (26) وَ احۡلُلۡ عُقۡدَةً مِّنۡ لِّسَانِیۡ (27) یَفۡقَهُوۡا قَوۡلِیۡ (28) وَ اجۡعَلۡ لِّیۡ وَزِیۡرًا مِّنۡ اَهۡلِیۡ (29) هٰرُوۡنَ اَخِی (30) اشۡدُدۡ بِهِ اَزۡرِیۡ (31) وَ اَشۡرِكۡهُ فِیۡۤ اَمۡرِیۡ (32) کَیۡ نُسَبِّحَكَ کَثِیۡرًا (33) وَّ نَذۡکُرَکَ کَثِیۡرًا (34) اِنَّكَ کُنۡتَ بِنَا بَصِیۡرًا (35) قَالَ قَدۡ اُوۡتِیۡتَ سُؤۡلَكَ یٰمُوۡسٰی (36) وَ لَقَدۡ مَنَنَّا عَلَیۡكَ مَرَّةً اُخۡرٰۤی (37) اِذۡ اَوۡحَیۡنَاۤ اِلٰۤی اُمِّكَ مَا یُوۡحٰۤی (38) اَنِ اقۡذِفِیۡهِ فِی التَّابُوۡتِ فَاقۡذِفِیۡهِ فِی الۡیَمِّ فَلۡیُلۡقِهِ الۡیَمُّ بِالسَّاحِلِ یَاۡخُذۡهُ عَدُوٌّ لِّیۡ وَ عَدُوٌّ لَّهُ وَ اَلۡقَیۡتُ عَلَیۡكَ مَحَبَّةً مِّنِّیۡ وَ لِتُصۡنَعَ عَلٰی عَیۡنِیۡ (39) اِذۡ تَمۡشِیۡۤ اُخۡتُكَ فَتَقُوۡلُ هَلۡ اَدُلُّکُمۡ عَلٰی مَنۡ یَّکۡفُلُهُ فَرَجَعۡنٰكَ اِلٰۤی اُمِّكَ کَیۡ تَقَرَّ عَیۡنُهَا وَ لَا تَحۡزَنَ وَ قَتَلۡتَ نَفۡسًا فَنَجَّیۡنٰكَ مِنَ الۡغَمِّ وَ فَتَنّٰكَ فُتُوۡنًا فَلَبِثۡتَ سِنِیۡنَ فِیۡۤ اَهۡلِ مَدۡیَنَ ثُمَّ جِئۡتَ عَلٰی قَدَرٍ یّٰمُوۡسٰی (40) وَ اصۡطَنَعۡتُكَ لِنَفۡسِیۡ (41) اِذۡهَبۡ اَنۡتَ وَ اَخُوۡكَ بِاٰیٰتِیۡ وَ لَا تَنِیَا فِیۡ ذِکۡرِیۡ (42) اِذۡهَبَاۤ اِلٰی فِرۡعَوۡنَ اِنَّهُ طَغٰی (43) فَقُوۡلَا لَهُ قَوۡلًا لَّیِّنًا لَّعَلَّهُ یَتَذَکَّرُ اَوۡ یَخۡشٰی (44) قَالَا رَبَّنَاۤ اِنَّنَا نَخَافُ اَنۡ یَّفۡرُطَ عَلَیۡنَاۤ اَوۡ اَنۡ یَّطۡغٰی (45) قَالَ لَا تَخَافَاۤ اِنَّنِیۡ مَعَکُمَاۤ اَسۡمَعُ وَ اَرٰی (46) فَاۡتِیٰهُ فَقُوۡلَاۤ اِنَّا رَسُوۡلَا رَبِّكَ فَاَرۡسِلۡ مَعَنَا بَنِیۡۤ اِسۡرَآءِیۡلَ وَ لَا تُعَذِّبۡهُمۡ قَدۡ جِئۡنٰكَ بِاٰیَةٍ مِّنۡ رَّبِّكَ وَ السَّلٰمُ عَلٰی مَنِ اتَّبَعَ الۡهُدٰی (47) اِنَّا قَدۡ اُوۡحِیَ اِلَیۡنَاۤ اَنَّ الۡعَذَابَ عَلٰی مَنۡ کَذَّبَ وَ تَوَلّٰی (48) قَالَ فَمَنۡ رَّبُّکُمَا یٰمُوۡسٰی (49) قَالَ رَبُّنَا الَّذِیۡ اَعۡطٰی کُلَّ شَیۡءٍ خَلۡقَهُ ثُمَّ هَدٰی (50) قَالَ فَمَا بَالُ الۡقُرُوۡنِ الۡاُوۡلٰی (51) قَالَ عِلۡمُهَا عِنۡدَ رَبِّیۡ فِیۡ کِتٰبٍ لَا یَضِلُّ رَبِّیۡ وَ لَا یَنۡسَی (52) الَّذِیۡ جَعَلَ لَکُمُ الۡاَرۡضَ مَهۡدًا وَّ سَلَكَ لَکُمۡ فِیۡهَا سُبُلًا وَّ اَنۡزَلَ مِنَ السَّمَآءِ مَآءً  فَاَخۡرَجۡنَا بِهِ اَزۡوَاجًا مِّنۡ نَّبَاتٍ شَتّٰی (53) کُلُوۡا وَ ارۡعَوۡا اَنۡعَامَکُمۡ  اِنَّ فِیۡ ذٰلِكَ لَاٰیٰتٍ لِّاُولِی النُّهٰی (54) مِنۡهَا خَلَقۡنٰکُمۡ وَ فِیۡهَا نُعِیۡدُکُمۡ وَ مِنۡهَا نُخۡرِجُکُمۡ تَارَةً اُخۡرٰی (55) وَ لَقَدۡ اَرَیۡنٰهُ اٰیٰتِنَا کُلَّهَا فَکَذَّبَ وَ اَبٰی (54) قَالَ اَجِئۡتَنَا لِتُخۡرِجَنَا مِنۡ اَرۡضِنَا بِسِحۡرِكَ یٰمُوۡسٰی (57) فَلَنَاۡتِیَنَّكَ بِسِحۡرٍ مِّثۡلِهِ فَاجۡعَلۡ بَیۡنَنَا وَ بَیۡنَكَ مَوۡعِدًا لَّا نُخۡلِفُهُ نَحۡنُ وَ لَاۤ اَنۡتَ مَکَانًا سُوًی (58) قَالَ مَوۡعِدُکُمۡ یَوۡمُ الزِّیۡنَةِ وَ اَنۡ یُّحۡشَرَ النَّاسُ ضُحًی (59) فَتَوَلّٰی فِرۡعَوۡنُ فَجَمَعَ کَیۡدَهُ ثُمَّ اَتٰی (60) قَالَ لَهُمۡ مُّوۡسٰی وَیۡلَکُمۡ لَا تَفۡتَرُوۡا عَلَی اللّٰهِ کَذِبًا فَیُسۡحِتَکُمۡ بِعَذَابٍ وَ قَدۡ خَابَ مَنِ افۡتَرٰی (61) فَتَنَازَعُوۡا اَمۡرَهُمۡ بَیۡنَهُمۡ وَ اَسَرُّوا النَّجۡوٰی (62) قَالُوۡۤا اِنۡ هٰذٰىنِ لَسٰحِرٰنِ یُرِیۡدٰنِ اَنۡ یُّخۡرِجٰکُمۡ مِّنۡ اَرۡضِکُمۡ بِسِحۡرِهِمَا وَ یَذۡهَبَا بِطَرِیۡقَتِکُمُ الۡمُثۡلٰی (63) فَاَجۡمِعُوۡا کَیۡدَکُمۡ ثُمَّ ائۡتُوۡا صَفًّا وَ قَدۡ اَفۡلَحَ الۡیَوۡمَ مَنِ اسۡتَعۡلٰی (64) قَالُوۡا یٰمُوۡسٰۤی اِمَّاۤ اَنۡ تُلۡقِیَ وَ اِمَّاۤ اَنۡ نَّکُوۡنَ اَوَّلَ مَنۡ اَلۡقٰی (65) قَالَ بَلۡ اَلۡقُوۡا فَاِذَا حِبَالُهُمۡ وَ عِصِیُّهُمۡ یُخَیَّلُ اِلَیۡهِ مِنۡ سِحۡرِهِمۡ اَنَّهَا تَسۡعٰی (66) فَاَوۡجَسَ فِیۡ نَفۡسِهِ خِیۡفَةً مُّوۡسٰی (47) قُلۡنَا لَا تَخَفۡ اِنَّكَ اَنۡتَ الۡاَعۡلٰی (48) وَ اَلۡقِ مَا فِیۡ یَمِیۡنِكَ تَلۡقَفۡمَا صَنَعُوۡا اِنَّمَا صَنَعُوۡا کَیۡدُ سٰحِرٍ وَ لَا یُفۡلِحُ السَّاحِرُ حَیۡثُ اَتٰی (49) فَاُلۡقِیَ السَّحَرَةُ سُجَّدًا قَالُوۡۤا اٰمَنَّا بِرَبِّ هٰرُوۡنَ وَ مُوۡسٰی (70) قَالَ اٰمَنۡتُمۡ لَهُ قَبۡلَ اَنۡ اٰذَنَ لَکُمۡ اِنَّهُ لَکَبِیۡرُکُمُ الَّذِیۡ عَلَّمَکُمُ السِّحۡرَ فَلَاُقَطِّعَنَّ اَیۡدِیَکُمۡ وَ اَرۡجُلَکُمۡ مِّنۡ خِلَافٍ وَّ لَاُصَلِّبَنَّکُمۡ فِیۡ جُذُوۡعِ النَّخۡلِ وَ لَتَعۡلَمُنَّ اَیُّنَاۤ اَشَدُّ عَذَابًا وَّ اَبۡقٰی (71) قَالُوۡا لَنۡ نُّؤۡثِرَكَ عَلٰی مَا جَآءَنَا مِنَ الۡبَیِّنٰتِ وَ الَّذِیۡ فَطَرَنَا فَاقۡضِ مَاۤ اَنۡتَ قَاضٍ اِنَّمَا تَقۡضِیۡ هٰذِهِ الۡحَیٰوةَ الدُّنۡیَا (72) اِنَّـاۤ اٰمَنَّا بِرَبِّنَا لِیَغۡفِرَ لَنَا خَطٰیٰنَا وَ مَاۤ اَکۡرَهۡتَنَا عَلَیۡهِ مِنَ السِّحۡرِ وَ اللّٰهُ خَیۡرٌ وَّ اَبۡقٰی (73) اِنَّهُ مَنۡ یَّاۡتِ رَبَّهُ مُجۡرِمًا فَاِنَّ لَهُ جَهَنَّمَ لَا یَمُوۡتُ فِیۡهَا وَ لَا یَحۡیٰی (74) وَ مَنۡ یَّاۡتِهِ مُؤۡمِنًا قَدۡ عَمِلَ الصّٰلِحٰتِ فَاُولٰٓئِكَ لَهُمُ الدَّرَجٰتُ الۡعُلٰی (75) جَنّٰتُ عَدۡنٍ تَجۡرِیۡ مِنۡ تَحۡتِهَا الۡاَنۡهٰرُ خٰلِدِیۡنَ فِیۡهَا وَ ذٰلِكَ جَزٰٓؤُا مَنۡ تَزَکّٰی (76) وَ لَقَدۡ اَوۡحَیۡنَاۤ اِلٰی مُوۡسٰۤی اَنۡ اَسۡرِ بِعِبَادِیۡ فَاضۡرِبۡ لَهُمۡ طَرِیۡقًا فِی الۡبَحۡرِ یَبَسًا لَّا تَخٰفُ دَرَکًا وَّ لَا تَخۡشٰی (77) فَاَتۡبَعَهُمۡ فِرۡعَوۡنُ بِجُنُوۡدِهِ فَغَشِیَهُمۡ مِّنَ الۡیَمِّ مَا غَشِیَهُمۡ (78) وَ اَضَلَّ فِرۡعَوۡنُ قَوۡمَهُ وَ مَا هَدٰی (79) یٰبَنِیۡ اِسۡرَآءِیۡلَ قَدۡ اَنۡجَیۡنٰکُمۡ مِّنۡ عَدُوِّکُمۡ وَ وٰعَدۡنٰکُمۡ جَانِبَ الطُّوۡرِ الۡاَیۡمَنَ وَ نَزَّلۡنَا عَلَیۡکُمُ الۡمَنَّ وَ السَّلۡوٰی (80) کُلُوۡا مِنۡ طَیِّبٰتِ مَا رَزَقۡنٰکُمۡ وَ لَا تَطۡغَوۡا فِیۡهِ فَیَحِلَّ عَلَیۡکُمۡ غَضَبِیۡ وَ مَنۡ یَّحۡلِلۡ عَلَیۡهِ غَضَبِیۡ فَقَدۡ هَوٰی (81) وَ اِنِّیۡ لَغَفَّارٌ لِّمَنۡ تَابَ وَ اٰمَنَ وَ عَمِلَ صَالِحًا ثُمَّ اهۡتَدٰی (82) وَ مَاۤ اَعۡجَلَكَ عَنۡ قَوۡمِكَ یٰمُوۡسٰی (83) قَالَ هُمۡ اُولَآءِ عَلٰۤی اَثَرِیۡ وَ عَجِلۡتُ اِلَیۡكَ رَبِّ لِتَرۡضٰی (84) قَالَ فَاِنَّا قَدۡ فَتَنَّا قَوۡمَکَ مِنۡ بَعۡدِكَ وَ اَضَلَّهُمُ السَّامِرِیُّ (85) فَرَجَعَ مُوۡسٰۤی اِلٰی قَوۡمِهِ غَضۡبَانَ اَسِفًا قَالَ یٰقَوۡمِ اَلَمۡ یَعِدۡکُمۡ رَبُّکُمۡ وَعۡدًا حَسَنًا اَفَطَالَ عَلَیۡکُمُ الۡعَهۡدُ اَمۡ اَرَدۡتُّمۡ اَنۡ یَّحِلَّ عَلَیۡکُمۡ غَضَبٌ مِّنۡ رَّبِّکُمۡ فَاَخۡلَفۡتُمۡ مَّوۡعِدِیۡ (86) قَالُوۡا مَاۤ اَخۡلَفۡنَا مَوۡعِدَكَ بِمَلۡکِنَا وَ لٰکِنَّا حُمِّلۡنَاۤ اَوۡزَارًا مِّنۡ زِیۡنَةِ الۡقَوۡمِ فَقَذَفۡنٰهَا فَکَذٰلِكَ اَلۡقَی السَّامِرِیُّ (87) فَاَخۡرَجَ لَهُمۡ عِجۡلًا جَسَدًا لَّهُ خُوَارٌ فَقَالُوۡا هٰذَاۤ اِلٰـهُكُمۡ وَ اِلٰهُ مُوۡسٰی فَنَسِیَ (88) اَفَلَا یَرَوۡنَ اَلَّا یَرۡجِعُ اِلَیۡهِمۡ قَوۡلًا وَّ لَا یَمۡلِكُ لَهُمۡ ضَرًّا وَّ لَا نَفۡعًا (89) وَ لَقَدۡ قَالَ لَهُمۡ هٰرُوۡنُ مِنۡ قَبۡلُ یٰقَوۡمِ اِنَّمَا فُتِنۡتُمۡ بِهِ وَ اِنَّ رَبَّکُمُ الرَّحۡمٰنُ فَاتَّبِعُوۡنِیۡ وَ اَطِیۡعُوۡا اَمۡرِیۡ (90) قَالُوۡا لَنۡ نَّبۡرَحَ عَلَیۡهِ عٰکِفِیۡنَ حَتّٰی یَرۡجِعَ اِلَیۡنَا مُوۡسٰی (91) قَالَ یٰهٰرُوۡنُ مَا مَنَعَكَ اِذۡ رَاَیۡتَهُمۡ ضَلُّوۡۤا (92) اَلَّا تَتَّبِعَنِ اَفَعَصَیۡتَ اَمۡرِیۡ (93) قَالَ یَبۡنَؤُمَّ لَا تَاۡخُذۡ بِلِحۡیَتِیۡ وَ لَا بِرَاۡسِیۡ اِنِّیۡ خَشِیۡتُ اَنۡ تَقُوۡلَ فَرَّقۡتَ بَیۡنَ بَنِیۡۤ اِسۡرَآءِیۡلَ وَ لَمۡ تَرۡقُبۡ قَوۡلِیۡ (94) قَالَ فَمَا خَطۡبُكَ یٰسَامِرِیُّ (95) قَالَ بَصُرۡتُ بِمَا لَمۡ یَبۡصُرُوۡا بِهِ فَقَبَضۡتُ قَبۡضَةً مِّنۡ اَثَرِ الرَّسُوۡلِ فَنَبَذۡتُهَا وَ کَذٰلِكَ سَوَّلَتۡ لِیۡ نَفۡسِیۡ (96) قَالَ فَاذۡهَبۡ فَاِنَّ لَكَ فِی الۡحَیٰوةِ اَنۡ تَقُوۡلَ لَا مِسَاسَ وَ اِنَّ لَكَ مَوۡعِدًا لَّنۡ تُخۡلَفَهُ وَ انۡظُرۡ اِلٰۤی اِلٰـهِكَ الَّذِیۡ ظَلۡتَ عَلَیۡهِ عَاکِفًا لَنُحَرِّقَنَّهُ ثُمَّ لَنَنۡسِفَنَّهُ فِی الۡیَمِّ نَسۡفًا (97) اِنَّمَاۤ اِلٰـهُکُمُ اللّٰهُ الَّذِیۡ لَاۤ اِلٰهَ اِلَّا هُوَ وَسِعَ کُلَّ شَیۡءٍ عِلۡمًا (98)

And has the story of Moses come to your knowledge when he saw a flame, he said to his family: “Wait here you people I see fire so that I can bring an ember from it for you or perhaps am able to find some information there about the way.” (9-10)

Then when he reached near it, a voice called: “Moses! It is I, your Lord. So, take off your shoes because you are in the sacred valley of Tuwa. And I have chosen you. So, intently listen to what is being revealed to you. Indeed, I alone am God; there is no deity besides Me. So, worship Me and be diligent in the prayer to keep Me in remembrance. Indeed, the Hereafter is sure to come. I shall strive to keep it hidden so that every person is rewarded for his deeds. Thus, anyone who does not believe in the Hereafter and follows his desires should not make you negligent of the prayer lest you perish.” (11-16)

“And what is this in your hands, O Moses!” He replied: “This is my staff. I lean on it and through it bring down leaves for my flock. And I also have other uses in it.” God said: “Place it on the ground, O Moses.” He placed it. So, suddenly it became a slithering serpent. God said: “Pick it up and fear not. We shall return it again to its first shape. And draw your hand towards your arm. It will emerge from there white without any illness as a second sign so that We may make you observe some great signs of Ours.” (17-23)

“Go to the Pharaoh. He has become a great tyrant.” He prayed: “Lord! Open my chest for me and make my task easy for me and free my tongue from its impediment so that people are able to understand what I say. And by appointing my brother Aaron from my family a helper for me strengthen my back, and make him share my responsibility so that as much as possible we are able to extol and glorify you and spread your word far and wide. Indeed, you have been continuously watching over our affairs.” God said: “Your request is granted, O Moses!” (24-36)

And at another instance as well We did a favour to you when We revealed to your mother what is being revealed to you: “Put him in a box; then place the box in the river.” Then the river should cast it on the bank so that he may pick it up who is My enemy also and of this child too. And I shed a reflection of My love on you and so that you be brought up under My supervision. At the time when your sister would go repeatedly and would say to them: “Should I inform you of those people who can bring up this child?” Thus We returned you to your mother so that her eyes are soothed and she does not grieve. (37-40)

And you had killed a person. Then We delivered you from this grief and We fully tested you. Then you stayed for many years among the people of Madyan. Then you have reached here at a specially appointed time, O Moses! And I chose you for My special assignment. (40-41)

“Go you and your brother with My signs and be not negligent in remembering Me. Go both of you to the Pharaoh. Indeed, he has become very rebellious. So, invite him softly; he may well pay heed or have fear.” (42-44)

They said: “Our Lord! We fear that he will be cruel to us or his rebelliousness may increase even further.” God said: “Fear not! I am with you hearing and seeing everything. So, go to him and tell him: ‘We both are messengers of your Lord; so let the Israelites go with us and do not put them through torment. We have also brought to you a big sign of your Lord. And peace is on them who follow the guidance. It has been revealed to us that there is however torment for those who deny and turn away.’” (45-48)

The Pharaoh asked: “Who is the Lord of both of you, O Moses?!” He replied: “Our Lord is one who has given everything its physical shape; then gave guidance.” The Pharaoh said: “Then what is the situation of the previous nations?” Moses replied: “Their knowledge is with my Lord in a register. My Lord neither errs nor forgets,” – He Who has made the earth a cradle for you and made in it pathways for you and sent down water from the heavens; thus from it We produced various types of diverse plants. Eat and graze your cattle. There are signs in this for those who have intellect. From it We have created you, to it We shall return you and from it bring you out again. (49-55)

And We showed him all Our signs. In spite of this, he denied and rejected. He said: “Moses! Have you come to us to turn us out from our land by a spell of your magic? Then we too shall bring a similar magic against you. So, appoint a specific location between us and yourself, some place in the middle. Neither should we breach it nor should you.” (56-58)

He said: “For you the promised day is the day of festivity and that people should be made to gather before midday.” Thus the Pharaoh withdrew from there and gathered all his manoeuvres, then came for combat. Moses said: “Be forsaken! Do not impute falsehood to God so that He may crush you through some calamity. And he who imputes falsehood to God shall not succeed.” (59-61)

At this, they began mutually consulting and secretly advising one another. They said: “Both of them are very adept magicians. They want to turn you out from your land through their magic and uproot this exemplary system of yours. So, bring together all your schemes; then come united against them and today only he shall succeed who dominates.” (62-64)

They said: “Moses! Either you put forth or it can be that we put forth first?” He said: “In fact, you put forth.” So, all of a sudden their ropes and their staffs, because of their magic, seemed to him as if they are sliding. At this, Moses felt a little scared in his heart. We said: “Fear not! Certainly, it is you who shall remain dominant and that which is in your hands place it on the ground. Whatever they have fashioned, it will swallow it. This trick they have played is a mere trick of a magician and wherever a magician may go, he does not succeed.” So the magicians fell down in prostration. They cried out: “We profess faith in the Lord of Moses and Aaron.” (65-70).

The Pharaoh said: “You attested to him without my permission? Indeed, he is your mentor who has taught magic to you. So, I shall have your hands and feet severed from opposite directions and crucify you on trunks of palm trees and you shall come to know whose punishment among us is more stern and more lasting.” (71)

They replied: “We shall certainly not give you preference over those clear signs that have come before us nor over the Being Who has created us. So, do what you want to. Whatever you can do relates to this worldly life. We professed faith in our Lord so that He may forgive our sins and also forgive the magic to which you have compelled us. And God alone is better and eternal.” (72-73)

Indeed, whoever comes before his Lord as a wrongdoer, for him is Hell. He shall neither die nor live in it. And those go before Him as believers who would have done righteous deeds also, then it is such people for whom there are high ranks. For them, will be orchards of eternal residence beneath which streams flow. They shall live in them forever. And this is the reward of those who adopt purity. (74-76)

And We revealed to Moses: “Set off with My servants at night. Then make a dry path for them in the sea. Neither will you be in danger of being pursued nor have any fear of drowning.” So, the Pharaoh followed him with his armies. Ultimately, they were covered by the sea with that which covered them. And the Pharaoh led astray his nation; he did not show it the right path. (77-78)

O Israelites! We delivered you from your enemy and promised you a time at the blessed side of Tur and sent down upon you mann and salwa: “Eat of the pure things given by Us and do not be rebellious after receiving this favour lest My wrath descends on you and he on whom My wrath descends will be ruined. And for those who repent, accept faith and do good deeds, then adhere to guidance, for them I am very Forgiving.” (79-82)

And what made you leave your people and come over early, O Moses? He replied: “These people are also right behind me and Lord! I have come early to earn your pleasure.” God said: “Then We have put your nation through a trial behind you and Samiri has led it astray.” At this, Moses returned to his nation in great anger and grief and said: “People of My Nation! Had not your Lord made a very good promise with you? Has much time passed on you or did you want that your Lord’s wrath descend on you; for this reason, you have broken My covenant?” (83-86)

They replied: “We did not break our promise with you out of our own will. In fact, we had been made to carry the burden of the nation’s jewellery. We cast it off and in this way Samiri showed this trick.” (87)

So, he extracted a calf for them: a body from which the sound of a bull would come out. At this, they said: “Is this your god and that of Moses, but he has forgotten it.” Would not these people reflect that neither can it respond to anything nor can it inflict any harm or give benefit? (88-89)

And Aaron had already said to them: “O People of My Nation! You have been put through trial by it. Your Lord is the Most Merciful God. Hence you should follow me and listen to me.” They said: “We shall now keep worshipping this calf until Moses returns to us.” (90-91)

Moses said: “Aaron! When you saw them going astray, what stopped you from not following me? Have you disobeyed My directive?” He replied: “O the one given birth to by my mother! Grasp not my beard nor my head. I feared that you would but say: ‘You have created a rift among the Israelites and did not give regard to what I said.’” (92-94)

Moses asked: “What is your matter, O Samiri?” He replied: “I saw that which others did not; so, I picked up a handful from the footprints of the messenger; then cast it into the calf. Thus did my soul prompt me.” Moses said: “Then be off with you. Now, for life, you will continue to say: ‘No one should touch me,’ and there is another promised time too for you which will never be deferred from you. And look at this deity to which you strongly had attached yourself. We shall burn it; then scatter it in the sea. Only God is your deity; there is no other deity except Him. His knowledge embraces everything.” (95-98)



وَ هَلۡ اَتٰىكَ حَدِیۡثُ مُوۡسٰی (9) 9

This style has been used in the Qur’an to warn and threat as well as to urge and exhort. Here occasion and context shows that it is used in the latter meaning. The implication is that has the Prophet (sws) heard the account of Moses (sws). God shall narrate it to him. In it, he will find all the answers to questions that confront him in his current or future phases of preaching. It should be kept in mind that the reason that the anecdote of Moses (sws) is repeatedly mentioned in the Qur’an in various styles is that it was the legacy of Moses’ (sws) nation that has been transferred to the Prophet’s (sws) nation. Before the Prophet (sws), it was Moses (sws) who had been given the shari‘ah. The precarious phases which Moses (sws) faced in his preaching and the way he was helped by God were a source of great guidance and inspiration for the Prophet (sws). At the same time, the mistakes committed by the Israelites at every step and the guidance they received to mend their ways were a great source of teaching for the followers of the Prophet (sws). Readers may give due importance to this anecdote as such. It is, in fact, their own tale and not that of the others’.


اِذۡ رَاٰ نَارًا فَقَالَ لِاَهۡلِهِ امۡکُثُوۡا اِنِّیۡ اٰنَسۡتُ نَارًا لَّعَلِّیۡ اٰتِیۡکُمۡ مِّنۡهَا بِقَبَسٍ اَوۡ اَجِدُ عَلَی النَّارِ هُدًی (10)10

Now begins the anecdote of Moses (sws) from the time he was called upon to accept the responsibility of God’s messenger. This took place when he was returning from Madyan with his family.

It is evident from the word اٰنَسۡتُ that he had not seen a big fire burning but only some sort of a flame which shimmered and then disappeared, and perhaps no one else saw it. From here, this word also began to be used to mean “to see and observe intently.”

Had it been a blazing fire, Moses (sws) would have indicated that a fire was burning at a distance and that he would go there to find out the way from anyone there; in case, there was none there, he would return with an ember to shield them from the biting cold.


فَلَمَّاۤ اَتٰىهَا نُوۡدِیَ یٰمُوۡسٰی (11) اِنِّیۡ اَنَا رَبُّكَ فَاخۡلَعۡ نَعۡلَیۡكَ اِنَّكَ بِالۡوَادِ الۡمُقَدَّسِ طُوًی (12)11

As is evident from the verses, the first directive given to Moses (sws) was to take off his shoes. This is not only among the etiquette of cleanliness but also a norm of decency and humility. Thus, taking off shoes in the mosques has been made mandatory precisely for this reason. They are places of gathering in God’s presence for which both cleanliness and humility are essential. Some people are of the opinion that if the shoes are clean, they can be worn in the mosque. However, this is not correct because this would be against decency and humility which is also a condition to enter the mosques just as cleanliness is.

The reason for asking Moses (sws) to take off his shoes is that he was in the sacred valley of Tuwa. This is a vast flat land situated at the base of mount Sinai. All parts of the earth have been created by God and do not have any superiority over one another except if some part has some special association with God. The valley of Sinai has some special distinctions: God spoke to Moses (sws) here and made His reflection manifest on mount Sinai. For this reason, it is called sacred in this verse.


وَ اَنَا اخۡتَرۡتُكَ فَاسۡتَمِعۡ لِمَا یُوۡحٰی (13)12

The word اِسْتِمَاع means “to listen attentively.” This sentence is meant to focus the attention of Moses (sws) before uttering what is really meant to be communicated to him. Evident from this verse is the honour and respect which Moses (sws) acquired after being appointed God’s messenger and also the great responsibility which was imposed on him in this capacity.


اِنَّنِیۡ اَنَا اللّٰهُ لَاۤ اِلٰهَ اِلَّاۤ اَنَا فَاعۡبُدۡنِیۡ وَ اَقِمِ الصَّلٰوةَ لِذِکۡرِیۡ (14)13

This is the first instruction given to Moses (sws) and it is something which has been given to all messengers of God. An analysis of this verse shows that three things are mentioned in it.

Firstly, the belief of monotheism is alluded to because it occupies the central place in religion. As far as believing in God is concerned, the world has always believed in Him. Denying Him is a fashion of current times. However, associating partners with Him has always afflicted mankind in some form or the other. Thus every messenger was first instructed in this belief and every messenger launched an offensive against polytheism the foremost.

The second instruction given to Moses (sws) was to worship God. Worship is God’s right alone. As God, He must be worshipped and since He has no partner, it is essential that this worship be done without associating anyone with Him. One of the consequences of this worship, as has been explained at other instances, is that He be obeyed too. Just as it is not permissible to worship anyone, it is also not permissible to willingly obey anyone against His directives. The real essence of worship is to express one’s servitude before God, revive one’s promise of obeying Him and of showing sincerity to Him and to keep Him in remembrance. Thus it is absolutely against one’s obligation to God to glorify Him but to fashion out a shari‘ah or to acknowledge this right for someone else. This is polytheism. I have presented arguments to validate this in my book Haqiqat-i Shirk o Tawhid (The Essence of Polytheism and Monotheism).

The third thing is the prayer. The word used with it is إقامة. It means to diligently offer it. It is mentioned to keep God in permanent remembrance. Whether it is offered individually or collectively, it is the greatest means to protecting God’s remembrance and also its highest and most effective manifestation. For this reason, after professing belief in monotheism, all messengers were asked to observe it the foremost. Through the prayer, a person keeps in remembrance his covenant of servitude with God and it is through it that an ummah keeps in remembrance its covenant made with God. If an individual or a group of people show neglect in offering the prayer, it will be as if they have shown neglect to the whole religion. This has been explained under verse 59 of Surah Maryam. Readers may look it up.


اِنَّ السَّاعَةَ اٰتِیَةٌ اَکَادُ اُخۡفِیۡهَا لِتُجۡزٰی کُلُّ نَفۡسٍۭ بِمَا تَسۡعٰی (15)14

This verse a reminder of the hereafter and the word used for it is اٰتِیَۃ . It does not merely refer to its coming but the fact that it is destined to come. This is because it occurs in the form of a subject-noun (fa‘il) and not a verb, and thus has an element of stress in it. It may be kept in mind that people have generally not rejected the hereafter in the absolute sense. Rather they have expressed it being improbable. For this reason, not only has the Qur’an validated its arrival but also emphasized its certainty.

The verse expresses the real purpose of its arrival: people may necessarily be rewarded or punished for their deeds. If this does not happen, it would mean that this world has not been created by someone merciful and compassionate. In such a case, it becomes a place of amusement and this obviously is totally illogical. The words بِمَا تَسۡعٰی also highlight the fact that it is essential that every person be treated according to his deeds only. If a person has satanic deeds but attains the status of the righteous or is absolved of accountability because of someone’s intercession or because of his own lineage, it would only mean that it is not character and deeds which carry weight before God; rather intercession and lineage that do.

The words اَکَادُ اُخۡفِیۡهَا form a very subtle parenthetical sentence. It is not just said: “I will hide the Day of Judgement.” The words used are: “I will strive to keep it hidden.” Those who have an appreciation of literary Arabic know that the word اَكَادُ has incorporated the meaning that even though God has concealed the Day of Judgement and will continue to do so, but it is very eager to get exposed. In verse 187 of Surah al-A‘raf, this subject15 is stated by words: ثَقُلَتۡ فِی السَّمٰوٰتِ وَ الۡاَرۡضِ ؕ لَا تَاۡتِیۡکُمۡ  اِلَّا بَغۡتَةً ؕ (both the heavens and the earth are burdened by its weight; it will suddenly come to you).


فَلَا یَصُدَّنَّكَ عَنۡهَا مَنۡ لَّا یُؤۡمِنُ بِهَا وَ اتَّبَعَ هَوٰىهُ فَتَرۡدٰی (16)15

The antecedent of the pronoun in عَنۡہَا is صَّلٰوۃَ and that of بِہَا is السَّاعَۃَ.

Someone can regard this interpretation of the verse to be the result of ambiguity in the pronouns which is considered to be a defect of a discourse. However, it is a defect when there is no indication found in the discourse to ascertain their antecedents. In the presence of a clear indication, this ambiguity is not a defect; it, in fact, imparts brevity to a sentence. Examples of this usage can be found in the works of the eloquent literati.

Here the indication is very apparent. After a mention of the prayer and the hereafter two verbs are used: یَصُدَّنَّ and یُؤۡمِنُ. Everyone having a flair for language instantly knows that the first of these collocates with صَّلٰوۃَ (the prayer) and the second with السَّاعَۃَ (the hereafter). Among past scholars, Abu Muslim also holds this opinion and I consider it to be correct in all respects.

On the basis of philosophy of religion too, if one reflects, it becomes evident that a person who does not have a firm belief in the hereafter will always regard the prayer to be a burden. The Qur’an specifies it thus: 

وَ اِنَّهَا لَکَبِیۡرَةٌ اِلَّا عَلَی الۡخٰشِعِیۡنَ الَّذِیۡنَ یَظُنُّوۡنَ اَنَّهُمۡ مُّلٰقُوۡا رَبِّهِمۡ وَ اَنَّهُمۡ اِلَیۡهِ رٰجِعُوۡنَ (2: 45-46)

And, undoubtedly, this is exacting but not to those who fear the Almighty, who think that they have to meet their Lord and that to Him alone they also have to return. (2:45-46) 

It is also similarly mentioned in the Qur’an that following one’s desires and forsaking the prayer mutually necessitate one another. It is stated in Surah Maryam: 

فَخَلَفَ مِنۡ بَعۡدِهِمۡ خَلۡفٌ اَضَاعُوا الصَّلٰوةَ وَ اتَّبَعُوا الشَّهَوٰتِ فَسَوۡفَ یَلۡقَوۡنَ غَیًّا (19: 59)

Then, after them, those wicked succeeded them who squandered the prayer and followed their desires. So, soon they will face the consequences of going astray. (19:59)

It is evident from these verses that after monotheism, it is the prayer to which Moses (sws) was directed the foremost and it was the hereafter which he was specially reminded of. This is also in consonance with the history of God’s prophets, as is evident from Surah Maryam. However, the misfortune of the Jews is lamentable that they squandered the prayer and also became indifferent to the hereafter. It may be a cause of amazement for the readers that their scriptures do mention the ritual of animal sacrifice, but the prayer, specially the one in the temple, is mentioned at just one place in chapter 26 of the book of Deuteronomy. Some of their jurists even think that Moses (sws) never bade them to offer the prayer and if it is mentioned in the Torah, then it is because of later editors who added it. As for their belief in the hereafter, their Sadduccees never believed in it. Their view is that reward and punishment takes place in this world. It seems that the Murijites among the Muslims have also taken their belief from them.

The words “lest you perish” at the end is meant to warn the addresees. If they become indifferent to the prayer and to the hereafter, they will be ruined. These two things protect the whole religion and safeguard people from the trials of Satan. He who becomes negligent of them is as if he has consigned himself to Satan.


وَ مَا تِلۡكَ بِیَمِیۡنِكَ یٰمُوۡسٰی (17)17

 The word يَمِيْن means “a hand” irrespective of being right or left. Several examples of this can be found in classical Arabic literature.

Obviously, this question is not meant to solicit an answer. It is meant to express affection and liking. It is similar to a question posed to a child by a person even though he knows what is in his hands. This question was asked about something that would in future would become the source of miracles at the hands of Moses (sws). 


قَالَ هِیَ عَصَایَ اَتَوَکَّؤُا عَلَیۡهَا وَ اَهُشُّ بِهَا عَلٰی غَنَمِیۡ وَ لِیَ فِیۡهَا مَاٰرِبُ اُخۡرٰی (18)18

 هش means to bring down leaves from a tree. ‘Ukbari is of the opinion that the words اَهُشُّ بِهَا عَلٰی غَنَمِیۡ mean اَقُوْمُ بِهَا عَلٰی غَنَمِیۡ (I protect and tend to my herd through it).19 If linguisic evidence can support this meaning, it would be very apt, but ‘Ukbari has not presented any evidence. So I have followed its common meaning in this regard.

It is clear from Moses’ answer that he did not merely respond to the question; he went much further and elaborated quite a lot. He could have just said that there was a staff in his hand. But he fully understood that the question posed was not merely an inquiry, it carried a great amount of affection in it. Thus he went into detail to answer it anticipating that this would open up the way to more exchange. If the questioner is very loved and sought after, prolonging the conversation with him is a natural desire.


قَالَ اَلۡقِهَا یٰمُوۡسٰی (19) فَاَلۡقٰهَا فَاِذَا هِیَ حَیَّةٌ تَسۡعٰی (20)20

 The verses express what ensued next.


قَالَ خُذۡهَا وَ لَا تَخَفۡ سَنُعِیۡدُهَا سِیۡرَتَهَا الۡاُوۡلٰی (21)21

Fearing a snake is something natural. Moses (sws) was scared because he thought that the staff he could use to kill the snake with had itself become a snake. He was thence assured by the Almighty.


وَ اضۡمُمۡ یَدَكَ اِلٰی جَنَاحِكَ تَخۡرُجۡ بَیۡضَآءَ مِنۡ غَیۡرِ سُوۡٓءٍ اٰیَةً اُخۡرٰی (22)22

At the same time, a second directive was given to Moses (sws), as is spelled out in the verse.

The verse specifies that the whiteness of the hand would not be because of any ailment; it would actually be a sign from God. This clarification refutes the Bible in which the whiteness of the arm is regarded to be because of the ailment of leprosy. It may also be noted that this was not meant to be a permanent sign. The words of the Qur’an bear witness that this would only happen when Moses (sws) would draw his hand into his gown and then take it out. An ailment could be suspected if the hand had permanently turned white. And if this had happened, then how could it have been regarded as a miracle?

The words اٰیَۃً اُخۡرٰی are not an independent sentence. They form a second accusative of state (hal). The first was that the hand would emerge white not because of any ailment and the second was that it would emerge as a sign from God. This aspect has been taken into account in the translation.


لِنُرِیَكَ مِنۡ اٰیٰتِنَا الۡکُبۡرٰی (23)23

This verse forms permanent glad tidings for Moses (sws): apparently, these are just two miracles; however, they are not merely two; concealed in them are some other great ones; when he faces trials later in life, he will see how these miracles manifest from them to express the power and might of God.

Thus details of all these miracles which Moses (sws) showed to the Pharaoh are presented in the Torah. In the Qur’an too, the ones which are mentioned show their majestic nature. It was this staff which created a way in the sea for Moses (sws) and the Israelites, and from it he was able to make twelve springs gush out from the mountain.

After imparting Moses (sws) with the teaching of monotheism and the hereafter and after equipping him with miracles, he was asked to go to the Pharaoh to try to make him fear God and His wrath since he had become very tyrannical. Here a question may arise: according to the established practice of God, miracles are given to the Prophets when their nations vehemently demand them and the purpose of giving them these miracles is conclusive communication of the truth so that those who are not using their intellect and are persistent on this demand are left with no excuse. If this is the case, then why was an exception created for Moses (sws) as he was given these miracles as soon as he was chosen as a prophet? The answer to this question is that he was being sent to such a tyrannical and cruel ruler who was his extreme enemy both in his individual and in his collective capacity. As soon as the Pharaoh knew that Moses (sws) was sent from God, he would have immediately ordered to execute him, let alone listen to and understand his message. In fact, he had already ordered his execution when he had killed a Copt. However, Moses (sws) had sneaked away to Madyan and hence he could not succeed in his plan. If Moses (sws) had gone to such a tyrannical and despotic ruler to warn him in the capacity of God’s Messenger, how could he even have tolerated listening to him? He could only have been prepared to listen to him if he had shown a sign that struck awe in him. Thus, at the very onset, the Almighty equipped Moses (sws) with two miracles through the help of which he remained secure from every onslaught of his enemies and, as is evident from succeeding verses, that as soon as he came to the Pharaoh he presented these miracles before him. The purpose was to caution him that if he indulged in some foul play, Moses (sws) had not come to him empty handed: he had a staff which could smash all conceit and arrogance to pieces.


اِذۡهَبۡ اِلٰی فِرۡعَوۡنَ اِنَّهُ طَغٰی (24) 24

This is was the first campaign assigned to Moses (sws). Details of the Pharaoh’s tyranny are mentioned in detail in the explanation of Surah al-A‘raf. He regarded himself to be the supreme God and was regarded as an avatar of the greatest deity of the Egyptians: the Sun. How despotic and oppressive he was can be sufficiently gauged from the fact that he had ordered that all male offspring born of the Israelites in his kingdom should be put to death or cast into the sea. Only girls were allowed to live so that they could serve as slave-maidens. How can there be two opinions about the rebellious nature of such a person? Since Moses (sws) was fully aware of this nature; in fact, had suffered because of it, the Almighty has not pointed to any details of his rebelliousness.

Here it should be kept in mind that God’s Messengers foremost address and warn the leaders and chiefs of their society. This is because it is through them that the whole society is administered. If they are reformed, the whole society becomes quickly reformed and everyone is awe-inspired by the logic and persuasive nature of the call of the prophets. However, if these leaders instead choose to stubbornly deny, then this too has a positive aspect for the preaching of the prophets: the hollow nature of their logic becomes evident to their followers. If they later accept the truth, they do so with full insight and comprehension and this insight creates in them the power to conquer the hearts of people. Hitherto, they were fishermen who would catch fish from the sea and later they become people who grabbed people to lead them to the path of truth. Contrary to this, movements that begin their campaigns through public propaganda rely on inciting the emotions of people. It is because of their participation that these movements prosper and remain functional as long as this participation continues. Sense and reason have no role in them and neither can they ever have. It cannot be denied that emotions have a strong role but if only they are relied upon, one can easily know the consequence.


قَالَ رَبِّ اشۡرَحۡ لِیۡ صَدۡرِیۡ (25) وَ یَسِّرۡ لِیۡ اَمۡرِیۡ (26) وَ احۡلُلۡ عُقۡدَةً مِّنۡ لِّسَانِیۡ (27) یَفۡقَهُوۡا قَوۡلِیۡ (28) وَ اجۡعَلۡ لِّیۡ وَزِیۡرًا مِّنۡ اَهۡلِیۡ (29) هٰرُوۡنَ اَخِی (30) اشۡدُدۡ بِهِ اَزۡرِیۡ (31) وَ اَشۡرِكۡهُ فِیۡۤ اَمۡرِیۡ (32) کَیۡ نُسَبِّحَكَ کَثِیۡرًا (33) وَّ نَذۡکُرَکَ کَثِیۡرًا (34) اِنَّكَ کُنۡتَ بِنَا بَصِیۡرًا (35) قَالَ قَدۡ اُوۡتِیۡتَ سُؤۡلَكَ یٰمُوۡسٰی (36)25

As soon as Moses (sws) came to know that he had been appointed a messenger and was required to go to the Pharaoh in this capacity to preach to him, he immediately uttered the supplication cited in the verses. Every word of this supplication shows how heavy Moses (sws) regarded this burden to be and how earnestly he pleaded before God to help him in fulfilling its responsibilities. Leaders who are slaves of worldly status live and die in their infatuation for leadership. Yet the prophets of God are devoid of any such desire. When God chooses them for leadership, they tremble when they imagine its responsibilities and pray to God that if He has burdened them with this responsibility, He should provide them with the strength to bear it and help and guide them at every step.

Consider Moses’ words: قَالَ رَبِّ اشۡرَحۡ لِیۡ صَدۡرِیۡ. First of all, Moses prayed for inner peace and satisfaction. If the responsibility is onerous and a person is fully aware of its requisites, the heart of every sensitive individual feels burdened. This is not a sign of weakness; in fact, it shows how conscientous he is. Prophets of God do not demand prophethood; on the contrary, as indicated earlier, they are given this responsibility from God. For this reason, they are naturally worried and apprehensive about carrying it out in the best way. This burden in the heart can only be done away with by God’s grace. He alone instils inner strength and provides guidance and conviction for future phases. It is only then that the heart is comforted and morale boosted. It may be kept in mind here that the prophets of God are not imparted knowledge and conviction in one go. They are given these provisions in accordance with their needs and circumstances. On their part, they keep yearning for more.

Next he prayed: وَ یَسِّرۡ لِیۡۤ اَمۡرِیۡ. After requesting God to give him peace of mind and inner satisfaction, Moses (sws) implores God to ease out the path for him and make the circumstances conducive for his success. No doubt, the task is difficult but God’s grace can remove all impediments and make the path smooth to tread.

His subsequent words وَ احۡلُلۡ عُقۡدَةً مِّنۡ لِّسَانِیۡ beseech God in a very humble way to grant him eloquence in speech in order to make his preaching impactful. It may be kept in mind that in those days, the sole means of communication was oratory and effective communication. For this reason, orators and speaker were respected the most in those times. Such was the extent of this in Arabia that the most powerful speaker would actually end up becoming the leader of his tribe. Without mesmerizing his audience through words, no one in those times could discharge the responsibilities of a leader in the optimum way.

Today the invention of the printing press has increased the importance of the written word and in fact it now occupies primary significance. If a person is able to secure help of the printing press, he can claim to surpass Demosthenes in oratory even though he may not be able to articulate a few sentences effectively. However, before the invention of the press, speech and oratory had great importance. This was specially true for those who had leadership roles. It is evident from the Qur’an that Moses (sws) was not a powerful speaker. Though this trait is not a requisite for prophethood yet, as indicated earier, it has great significance in preaching one’s message. Thus when Moses (sws) was given the responsibility of a prophet, he felt this deficiency in him and among others things, he prayed to God to bless him with this skill.

Realizing this deficiency in himself, he also requested God to make his elder brother Aaron (sws) his partner. It is evident from both the Torah and the Qur’an that Aaron (sws) was a very eloquent orator. Moses (sws) rightly thought that if he could obtain his help, his own shortcoming would be taken care of.

In Surah al-Qasas, his prayer is mentioned in the following words:


وَاَخِیۡ هٰرُوۡنُ هُوَ اَفۡصَحُ مِنِّیۡ لِسَانًا فَاَرۡسِلۡهُ مَعِیَ رِدۡاً یُّصَدِّقُنِیۡۤ  اِنِّیۡۤ اَخَافُ اَنۡ یُّکَذِّبُوۡنِ (28: 34)

And my brother Aaron is more eloquent than me. Send him with me also as my helper that he may support me. I fear that these people will reject me. (28:34) 

It is clearly evident from this verse that the real need for which Moses (sws) requested for the help of his brother Aaron (sws) was because he was a powerful speaker. He wanted to fill the void of his own deficiency through the skill of his brother so that he could present his message to people in a more effective way.

In Surah al-Shu‘ara’, precisely this aspect has been stated thus:


وَ یَضِیۡقُ صَدۡرِیۡ وَ لَا یَنۡطَلِقُ لِسَانِیۡ فَاَرۡسِلۡ اِلٰی هٰرُوۡنَ (26: 13)

And my chest is in discomfort and my tongue is also not fluent; so send message to Aaron. (26:13)


It is evident from these verses that Moses (sws) not a very powerful orator; but there are no grounds to believe that he would stammer. This is actually what the Torah says. It is from there that it entered tafsir books and then in order to authenticate it, exegetes fabricated an incident. The extent of veracity of the Torah can be gauged from the fact that it regards the whiteness of Moses’ hand to be due to leprosy. It is quite probable for those who regard their prophet to be a patient of leprosy to ascribe stammering to him as well.

Nevertheless there is nothing in the Qur’an that indicates he would stammer. The request found in the words وَ احۡلُلۡ عُقۡدَةً مِّنۡ لِّسَانِیۡ یَفۡقَهُوۡا قَوۡلِیۡ is not to relieve him of stammering but to bless him with the power of oratory. This was essential for him in order to effectively discharge his duty as God’s Messenger. The request made was in a very humble style. He never requested God to make him a powerful speaker who conquers the hearts of people; on the other hand, he very humbly requested God to bless him with fluent speech so that people were able to understand. This prayer is not necessarily from a person who suffers from stammering. Even a very articulate speaker prays and should pray for this ability. At times, thoughts arise in such a tumultuous way in the heart of a very eloquent person that he finds himself at a loss to express them orally or in written form. Moses (sws) was not a person who merely voiced a slogan like common people; he wanted to teach and explain the facts and secrets of religion and that too in front of people who were not only vehemently denying him but were also after his life. Moreover, Moses (sws) did not want to do his job in a perfunctory way; his desire was to vanquish the hearts of his adversaries. A change of heart was not expected from them; so he requested his Lord to bless him with the prowess and expression to make them understand his message.

In short, the notion that Moses (sws) used to stammer has no basis. Regardless of the fact that just as God protects His messengers from moral shortcomings, He also protects them from physical defects, the most important point is that the Qur’an does not in any way corroborate this notion. Under the sarcastic accusation of the Pharaoh وَلَا يَكَادُ يُبِينُ  (he cannot speak clearly) cited in verse 52 of Surah al-Zukhruf, readers can see read more on this topic.

In the next part of his prayer هرُوۡنَ اَخِی وَ اجۡعَلۡ لِّیۡ وَزِیۡرًا مِّنۡ اَهۡلِیۡ Moses (sws) has requested Aaron (sws) as his helper. In the verses of Surah al-Qasas and Surah al-Shu‘ara’ cited earlier, he had made this request to cater for his own deficiency in oratory. He reckoned that his brother Aaron (sws) would effectively fill this void in him. He was his elder brother and he also trusted his character and conduct and most of all he was an acclaimed and eloquent speaker, as is evident from the Torah. When a person of all these traits is found in one’s own family, it is quite natural that Moses (sws) regard him to be the most worthy of fulfilling this role. The words مِّنۡ اَهۡلِیۡ (from my family) should not give the wrong impression that this selection had anything to do with family bias. This could have been the case if only the family was the basis of this choice. However, when the basis of selection is attributes, there is no chance of familial bias playing any role. In fact, the guidance obtained from this prayer is that when a person prays for God’s grace, he should first of all include his family in this prayer on the condition that they are righteous. Readers may look up the tafsir of Surah al-Baqarah where the prayer of Abraham (sws) is mentioned.

Consider next the words وَ اَشۡرِکۡهُ فِیۡۤ اَمۡرِیۡ اُشۡدُدۡ بِهِ اَزۡرِیۡ . The word اَزۡر means “back.” The request to God by Moses (sws) is to strengthen his back by making Aaron (sws) his partner so that he can bear the burden of his responsibility in befitting way. It is evident from the words وَ اَشۡرِکۡهُ فِیۡۤ اَمۡرِیۡ that the request made by Moses (sws) was not merely to make Aaron (sws) his companion but to actually make him a prophet as well: he too should be responsible before God in this capacity and he also should be directly guided and protected by God. This was a very significant request because as has been explained under verse 53 of Surah Maryam it is not known if ever a prophet was made the helper of another prophet. However, God showed favour to Moses (sws) and accepted his request. Leaders who are slaves to the pleasures of this world feel so jealous that even for small gains and positions, they do not let others come near them. Yet, a true comprehension of entrusted responsibilities makes even a prophet pray to God to make someone share his task.

Here it may be noted that in the Torah, Aaron (sws) is not mentioned the way he is in the Qur’an. In the Torah, he is mentioned as a companion and spokesman of Moses (sws) who was actually responsible for the mischief played by Samiri. The Qur’an has unveiled the true character of these personalities.

The verses کَیۡ نُسَبِّحَكَ کَثِیۡرًا وَّ نَذۡکُرَكَ کَثِیۡرًا refer to the fact that the reason for making Aaron (sws) his partner in prophethood was that both could together glorify and remember God as much as possible. Obviously, here individual glorification and remembrance is not implied; it refers to its collective form and actually means discharging the responsibility of prophethood. The public and private lives of all those who follow prophets of God in guiding people are an epitome of glorification and remembrance. Their prayers in the mosque constitute glorification and remembrance and their tasks at their work places also constitute these. In short, what they do is the same regardless of their locus. In verse 14 of this surah, it has been stated: اَقِمِ الصَّلٰوةَ لِذِکۡرِیۡ (adhere to the prayer to remember me) and then in verse 41 both Moses (sws) and Aaron are directed to go to the court of the Pharaoh with the guidance:وَ لَا تَنِیَا فِیۡ ذِکۡرِیۡ (both of you do not be negligent in remembering Me). Obviously, here remembrance refers to the responsibility of warning the Pharaoh.

There is a literary element found in the adjacent mention of glorification and remembrance. The former is meant to absolve someone of negative traits and the latter affirms positive traits in someone and both these are necessary to engender a relationship with God on the right footing. In other words, things which are against the majesty of God, His attributes and liking should be negated and things which are in harmony with His majesty, attributes and directives should be affirmed and expressed. Both these things come together to constitute the belief and character of a believer. Moreoever, negation has priority over affirmation. Unless a person declares to rebel against all false deities, he cannot be faithful to God. Before saying اِلَّا اللّٰه it is essential to utter: لَا اِلٰهَ.

The words اِنَّكَ کُنۡتَ بِنَا بَصِیۡرًا are a plea in favour of this prayer just as Zacharias mentioned the words مَاكُنْتُ بِدُعَائِكَ رَبِّ شَقِيًّا (I have never remained deprived regarding acceptance of my prayer) in favour of his prayer. They have already been explained under verse 4 of Surah Maryam. The best plea before God is not one’s deeds; rather, it is pleading before Him on the basis of His grace and compassion. When a person asks with such faith in God Who has given him everything without asking, how can he deprive that person when he actually asks from Him? Here Moses (sws) too has pleaded to God by referring to His dealing with himself and his brother. His implication is: you have always watched over us; now that we are preparing to uplift your cause, how can we be deprived of Your grace.

Consider next the part: قَالَ قَدۡ اُوۡتِیۡتَ سُؤۡلَكَ یٰمُوۡسٰی . The words سُؤۡلَ and سُوْالَ have the same meaning: request and plea. It is stated that the request of Moses (sws) has been granted. Here is a great amount of affection found in the invocative یٰمُوۡسٰی and the words in which his prayer was accepted also show great splendour. As soon as his prayer ended, he was given glad tidings of its acceptance. In other words, everything was accepted in the blink of an eye without any hesitation and without any exception. Obviously, included in this acceptance is also the prayer of Moses (sws) which he made to increase his power of speech. He was blessed with this power and Aaron (sws) was made his helper. If a prayer is made for the right objective at the right time in a sincere way, it is accepted by God.


1. This is Surah Taha.

2. We have not revealed this Qur’an to you to put you through difficulty.

3. It is only a reminder for those who fear God.

4. It has been revealed in a very thorough manner by the being Who created the earth and the lofty skies.

5. The most Merciful Who sits on the throne of governance. Whatever is in the heavens and in the earth and whatever is in between and whatever is below the earth are under His control.

6. It is the Merciful who has taught the Qur’an.

7. Whether you speak openly or secretly; nothing is hidden from Him because He knows what is said secretly and what is even more hidden.

8. He is God; there is no deity besides Him. All good names belong to Him.

9. And has the story of Moses come to your knowledge.

10. When he saw a flame, he said to his family: “Wait here you people I see fire so that I can bring an ember from it for you or perhaps am able to find some information there about the way.”

11. Then when he reached near it, a voice called: “Moses! It is I, your Lord. So, take off your shoes because you are in the sacred valley of Tuwa.”

12.And I have chosen you. So, intently listen to what is being revealed to you.”

13.Indeed, I alone am God; there is no deity besides Me. So, worship Me and be diligent in the prayer to keep Me in remembrance.”

14. “Indeed, the Hereafter is sure to come. I shall strive to keep it hidden so that every person is rewarded for his deeds.”

15. For its detailed explanation, see: vol. 3, 404.

16. Thus, anyone who does not believe in the Hereafter and follows his desires should not make you negligent of the prayer lest you perish.”

17. “And what is this in your hands, O Moses!”

18. He replied: “This is my staff. I lean on it and through it bring down leaves for my flock. And I also have other uses in it.”

19. Abu al-Baqa’ ‘Abdullah ibn al-Husayn ibn ‘Abdullah al-‘Ukbari, Imla’ ma manna bihi al-Rahman min wujuh al-i‘rab wa al-qira’at, vol. 2, (Lahore: Maktabah ‘ilmiyyah, n.d.), 120.

20. God said: “Place it on the ground, O Moses.” He placed it. So, suddenly it became a slithering serpent.”

21. God said: “Pick it up and fear not. We shall return it again to its first shape.”

22. “And draw your hand towards your arm. It will emerge from there white without any illness as a second sign.”

23. “So that We may make you observe some great signs of Ours.”

24. “Go to the Pharaoh. He has become a great tyrant.”

25. He prayed: “Lord! Open my chest for me and make my task easy for me and free my tongue from its impediment so that people are able to understand what I say. And by appointing my brother Aaron from my family a helper for me strengthen my back, and make him share my responsibility so that as much as possible we are able to extol and glorify you and spread your word far and wide. Indeed, you have been continuously watching over our affairs.” God said: “Your request is granted, O Moses!”

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