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al-Anfal (The Spoils of War)
as rendered by Ahmed Ali

Ahmed Ali rendition of Surah The Spoils of War(al-Anfal)
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8:1 THEY ASK YOU of (benefits accruing as) spoils of war. Tell them: "The benefits belong to God and His Messenger." So fulfil your duty to God and keep peace among yourselves. Obey God and the Prophet, If you really believe.
8:2 Only they are true believers whose hearts fill up with awe when the name of God is mentioned; and their faith is further strengthened when His messages are read out to them; and those who place their trust in their Lord,
8:3 Who are firm in devotion, and spend of what We have given them,
8:4 Are true believers. There are for them (high) ranks with their Lord, and pardon and noble provision.
8:5 As your Lord sent you from your home (to fight) for the true cause, a section of the faithful were averse,
8:6 Who argued with you about the matter even after it had become quite clear, as if they were being pushed into (the arms of) death as they waited.
8:7 Though God promised that one of two columns (would fall to you), you desired the one that was not armed. But God wished to confirm the truth by His words, and wipe the unbelievers out to the last,
8:8 So that Truth may be affirmed and falsehood negated, even though the sinners be averse.
8:9 Remember when you prayed to your Lord for help, He heard you and said: "I shall send a thousand angels following behind you for your aid."
8:10 He gave you the good news only to reassure your hearts, for victory comes from God alone, and certainly God is all-mighty and all-wise.
8:11 A blanketing sleep came over you as a (measure of) security from Him, and He sent down rain from the skies to cleanse you, and to remove the plague of Satan, and to strengthen your hearts and steady your steps.
8:12 And the Lord said to the angels: "I am with you; go and strengthen the faithful. I shall fill the hearts of infidels with terror. So smite them on their necks and every joint, (and incapacitate them),"
8:13 For they had opposed God and His Apostle; but whosoever opposes God and his Apostle (should know) that God is severe in retribution.
8:14 For you is this (punishment) to taste, for the infidels the torment of Hell.
8:15 O believers, when you meet unbelievers on the field of battle, do not turn your backs to them.
8:16 For any one who turns his back on that day, except to manoeuvre or rally to his side, will bring the wrath of God on himself, and have Hell as abode; and what an evil destination!
8:17 It was not you who killed them, but God did so. You did not throw what you threw, (sand into the eyes of the enemy at Badr), but God, to bring out the best in the faithful by doing them a favour of His own. God is all-hearing and all-knowing.
8:18 That was that, but remember God will make the plots of the unbelievers contemptible.
8:19 You had asked for a judgement, so the judgement has come to you (In the form of victory for the faithful). So, if you desist it will be better for you. If you come back to it, We shall do the same, and your forces, however large, will not be of the least avail, for God is with those who believe.
8:20 O believers, obey God and His Messenger, and do not turn away from him when you hear (him speak);
8:21 And do not be like those who say: "We have heard," but do not hear.
8:22 The worst of creatures in the eyes of God are those who are deaf and dumb and devoid of sense.
8:23 If God had seen any good in them He would surely have made them hear. Now even if He makes them hear they will turn away (in obduracy).
8:24 O believers, respond to the call of God and His Prophet when he calls you to what will give you life (and preservation). Remember that God intervenes between man and his heart, and that you will be gathered before Him.
8:25 Beware of sedition, which does not affect the oppressors alone among you, and know that the punishment of God is severe.
8:26 Remember, when you were few and powerless in the land, afraid of despoliation at the hands of men. But then God sheltered and helped you to strength, and provided for you good things that you may perhaps be grateful.
8:27 O you who believe, do not be faithless to God and His Apostle, nor violate your trusts knowingly.
8:28 Know that your worldly possessions and your children are just a temptation, and that God has greater rewards with Him.
8:29 O believers, if you follow the path shown by God, He will give you a standard (of right and wrong), and overlook your sins, and forgive you. God is abounding in benevolence.
8:30 Remember, when the infidels contrived to make you a prisoner or to murder or expel you, they plotted, but God also planned; and God's plan is the best.
8:31 When Our messages were read out to them, they said: "We have heard. We could certainly compose (writings) like them if we choose. They are but only tales of long ago."
8:32 They had also said: "If this be the truth from you, O God, then rain down on us stones from the skies, or inflict a grievous punishment upon us."
8:33 But God would not choose to punish them while you are in their midst, nor afflict them when they are seeking forgiveness.
8:34 But what is there so special they have that God should not punish them when they obstruct people from the Holy Mosque, though they are not its (appointed) guardians? Its guardians could be only those who are pious and devout. But most of them do not know.
8:35 Their worship in the House of God has been no more than whistling and clapping. So they have to taste the punishment for disbelief.
8:36 Those who disbelieve spend their possessions on turning men away from God. They will go on spending and rue it in the end, and will be subdued. But those who remain disbelievers shall be gathered into Hell
8:37 That God may separate the bad from the good, and link the wicked together and cast them into Hell. These are verily the people who will lose.
8:38 You tell the unbelievers in case they desist whatever has happened will be forgiven them. If they persist, they should remember the fate of those who have gone before them.
8:39 So, fight them till all opposition ends, and obedience is wholly God's. If they desist then verily God sees all they do.
8:40 But if they are obstinate, know that God is your helper and protector: How excellent a helper, and how excellent a protector is He!
8:41 Know that one-fifth of what you acquire as booty (of war) is for God and His Apostle, and for relatives and orphans, the poor and wayfarers, if you truly believe in God and what We revealed to Our votary on the day of victory over the infidels when the two armies clashed (at Badr). For God has the power to do any thing.
8:42 (That day) when you were at one end of the valley, (the unbelievers) at the other, and the caravan below you (on the lowland by the coast), you would surely have declined to fight if (the Makkans) had offered you battle. (But the battle did take place) that God may end the matter which had been accomplished, so that he who had to die may perish after a clear demonstration, and he who had to live may survive in the light of positive proof, for God hears all and knows everything.
8:43 God showed (the Makkans) to be few in your dream, for if He had shown them to be many you would surely have lost courage and disagreed about the (wisdom) of the battle. But God spared you this, for He surely knows what is in the hearts of men.
8:44 When you faced them He made (the enemy) seem few to you in numbers, and made you appear fewer in their eyes, (it was) so that God could accomplish what had been decreed; for all things rest with God.
8:45 O believers, when you meet an army, stand firm, and think of God a great deal that you may be blessed with success.
8:46 Obey God and His Apostle, and do not disagree among yourselves or you will be unmanned and lose courage. Persevere, for God is with those who endure.
8:47 Do not be like those who went out of their homes full of their own importance, ostentatiously, trying to hinder others from the way of God. But God encompasses all they do.
8:48 Satan made their deeds look alluring to them, and said: "None will prevail over you this day, for I shall be near at hand." Yet when the two armies appeared face to face, he turned back and fled, saying: "I am not with you, for I can see what you cannot perceive. I fear God, for His punishment is severe."
8:49 The hypocrites, and those who had doubts in their hearts, said: "Their faith has misled them." But whoever places his trust in God will find God mighty and wise.
8:50 If you could only see the infidels as the angels draw away their souls and strike their faces and their backs, (saying): "Taste the torment of burning
8:51 For what you have brought upon yourselves." God is surely not unjust to His creatures, (they are unjust to themselves).
8:52 Their case is like that of Pharaoh's people, and of those before them, who denied the revelations of God, and were punished for their sins by God, and God is all powerful and Severe His punishment.
8:53 God does not withdraw a favour bestowed upon a people unless they change themselves, for God hears all and knows everything.
8:54 This was the case with the people of Pharaoh and those before them, who rejected the signs of their Lord and were destroyed for their sins, and We drowned the people of Pharaoh as they were oppressors.
8:55 Verily the worst of creatures in the sight of God are those who deny (the truth), and will not believe.
8:56 As for those with whom you have made a treaty and who abrogate it every time, and do not fear God,
8:57 If you meet them in battle, inflict on them such a defeat as would be a lesson for those who come after them, and that they may be warned.
8:58 If you apprehend treachery from a people (with whom you have a treaty), retaliate by breaking off (relations) with them, for God does not like those who are treacherous.
8:59 The infidels should not think that they can bypass (the law of God). Surely they cannot get away.
8:60 Prepare against them whatever arms and cavalry you can muster, that you may strike terror in (the hearts of) the enemies of God and your own, and others besides them not known to you, but known to God. Whatever you spend in the way of God will be paid back to you in full, and no wrong will be done to you.
8:61 But if they are inclined to peace, make peace with them, and have trust in God, for He hears all and knows everything.
8:62 If they try to cheat you, God is surely sufficient for you. It is He who has strengthened you with His help and with believers
8:63 Whose hearts He cemented with love. You could never have united their hearts even if you had spent whatever (wealth) is in the earth; but God united them with love, for He is all-mighty and all-wise.
8:64 God is sufficient for you, O Prophet, and the faithful who follow you.
8:65 O Prophet, urge the faithful to fight. If there are twenty among you with determination they will vanquish two hundred; and if there are a hundred then they will vanquish a thousand unbelievers, for they are people devoid of understanding.
8:66 God has lightened your burden as He knows you are weak: So, if there are a hundred men of firm determination among you, they will vanquish two hundred; and if there are a thousand of you they will vanquish two thousand by the will of God, for God is with those who are determined.
8:67 No apostle should take captives until he has battled and subdued the country. You desire the vanities of this world, but God wills (for you the reward) of the world to come; and God is all-mighty and all-wise.
8:68 Had this not been decreed by God in advance, you would have suffered a grievous punishment for what you took (as booty).
8:69 But now use such of the spoils as are lawful and good, and fear God, for God is forgiving and kind.
8:70 O Prophet, tell the captives you have taken: "If God finds some good in your hearts, He will reward you with something better than was taken away from you, and forgive your sins, for God is forgiving and kind."
8:71 If they try to deceive you, remember they have deceived God before. So He gave you mastery over them, for God is all-knowing and all-wise.
8:72 Those who accepted the faith and set out of their homes, and fought in the way of God wealth and soul, and those who gave them shelter and helped them, are friends of one another. You are not responsible for protecting those who embraced the faith but did not leave their homes, until they do so. In ease they ask for your help in the name of faith, you are duty bound to help them, except against a people with whom you have a treaty; for God sees all that you do.
8:73 Those who are infidels aid one another. Unless you do the same there will be discord in the land and anarchy.
8:74 Those who accepted the faith and abandoned their homes, and struggled in the cause of God, and those who gave them shelter and helped them, are veritably true believers. For them is forgiveness and noble sustenance.
8:75 Those who accepted the faith and left their homes and fought by your side, are your brothers; yet those who are related by blood are closer to one another according to the decree of God. Verily God knows everything.


   


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