Sūrah Qalam forms a pair with Sūrah Mulk the previous
sūrah with regard to the subject discussed in them: In Sūrah Mulk, the Quraysh
have been warned of the Day of Judgement while in Sūrah Qalam they have been
warned of the punishment which a nation necessarily faces in case it denies the
Prophet (sws) directly assigned to it.
Addressees of the Sūrah
Though the Prophet (sws) has also been addressed at
various places in this sūrah, yet a little deliberation shows that in all places
it is actually directed at the Quraysh.
Period of Revelation
It is evident from the subjects discussed in it that it
was revealed in Makkah during the phase of Inzār of the Prophet's mission.
By comparing the Book presented by the Prophet (sws) and
the character of the Prophet (sws) with the presumptive notions of the Quraysh
and character of its leaders, the Quraysh have been warned that the rebellious
and arrogant attitude adopted by them against the Book and Prophet of Allah have
made all their treasured possessions and estates vulnerable to punishment. They
should be sensible for they have nothing to say. They are only indulging in idle
talk because they are being given respite by the Almighty: it shall not be long
before His decree arrives.
At the end of the surah, the Prophet (sws) has been
directed to patiently wait for this decree.
In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Ever
This is Sūrah Nūn.
The pen bears witness [in the
scriptures written by it] and [this Qur’ān also] which [now] these [scribes are]
writing [by it] that you are not, by the grace of your Lord, possessed, and
indeed for you is a reward unending, and verily you are of a lofty character.
So it shall not be long before you shall see and they shall also see which of
you has been led away. Verily, your
Lord only best knows those who have strayed from His path and those who are
rightly guided. (1-7)
So, give no heed to these disbelievers. They desire that
you be flexible, then they will also be flexible. And heed not [among them every
person who is] swearer of false oaths, despicable, maker of evil gestures, who
goes about sowing seeds of dissension, forbidder of good, transgressor, usurper
of rights, cruel and moreover is rootless.
This is so because he has wealth and children.
When Our revelations are recited to him he cries out ‘These are but tales of the
ancients’. [He thinks that he has a
big nose. Listen! you shall see that] on this snout will We brand him.
We have tried them just as We tried the owners of the
orchard when they vowed that they would surely pluck the fruit of their orchard
in the morning and would not leave anything [for the poor and the needy]. Then
whilst they were asleep a mover from your Lord moved through it [O Prophet!] in
such a manner that [their blossoming orchard] became like a crop harvested. So
at daybreak they called out to one another ‘Go early in the morning to your
plantation if you are to pick its fruit’. Then off they went whispering to one
another ‘No needy person should set foot in this [orchard] today’. And they
proceeded very excitedly [to their destination] thinking that everything was
under their control. But when they saw it, they cried out ‘Surely we have lost
our way; in fact, we have been ruined’. Said the most upright among them ‘Did I
not tell you: ‘why do you not glorify the Lord?’’. They cried out ‘Glory be to
our Lord; verily it is we who were the wrong-doers’. Then they started blaming
one another. ‘Woe to us’ they cried. ‘We have been great transgressors. Perhaps
our Lord will give us in its place something better than it. To Him do we [now]
turn [in repentance].’ [O people of Makkah! you are denying this Prophet. So
take heed] in such a way shall the punishment come, and the punishment of the
Hereafter shall be much greater than this if they only knew.
For those, however, who fear [this punishment] there are
gardens of bliss with their Lord. [You reckon that this would never be. So] are
We to deal with those who submit to Us as We deal with those who transgress?
What is the matter with you? What is this judgement you have made?
Have you a scripture in which you read that you will have there whatever you
desire? Or have you a covenant with Us binding till the Day of Judgement that
you will have what you yourselves ordain? Ask if any of them will take
responsibility of this? Do they have some associates
[who will take this responsibility]? Let them produce these associates if what
they say be true. (34-41)
[No, they have nothing to say]. They must remember the day
when a great tumult will take place and they will be called to bow in adoration
and they will not be able to do so.
Downcast shall be their looks; ignominy shall cover them. [These wrongdoers!
their backs have now become stiff whilst] they also used to be called to bow in
adoration when they were normal. (42-43)
So [now] leave Me with those who are denying this Message.
We will lead them step by step [to their ruin] from a place they know not. I am
giving them respite [O Prophet! so that they can do all what they can]. Truly
powerful is My scheme. (44-45)
[Why don’t they listen]? Are you demanding some payment
from them so that they are burdened with its cost? Or is it that they have
knowledge of the Unseen [that they only will be successful in the Hereafter and]
that they are writing it down? [No, nothing of this sort], so [O Prophet!] with
perseverance wait for the judgement of your Lord and [with regard to your
nation] be not like the companion of the fish [Jonah]
when he called in anguish [from the belly of the fish]. If [at that time] had
not the favour of His Lord found him, he [as a result of his hastiness] would
have been cast in disgrace in the [very] wilderness in which [the fish had
ejaculated him]. [But then he repented] so His Lord chose him [once again] and
placed him among the righteous. (46-50)
[So persevere O Prophet! in the way of Allah] and
[persevere in spite of the fact that] these disbelievers when they hear this
Reminder [from you], it seems will almost stumble you with their eyes and say
‘He is surely possessed’. Yet it is only a reminder to all mankind. (51-52)