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al-`Ankabut (The Spider)
as rendered by Muhammad Asad
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Muhammad Asad rendition of Surah The Spider(al-`Ankabut)
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29:1 Alif. Lam. Mim.
29:2 DO MEN THINK that on their [mere] saying, “We have attained to faith”, they will be left to themselves, and will not be put to a test?
29:3 Yea, indeed, We did test those who lived before them; and so, [too, shall be tested the people now living: and] most certainly will God mark out those who prove themselves true, and most certainly will He mark out those who are lying.
29:4 Or do they think - they who do evil deeds [while claiming to have attained to faith] - that they can escape Us? Bad, indeed, is their judgment!
29:5 Whoever looks forward [with hope and awe] to meeting God [on Resurrection Day, let him be ready for it]: for, behold, the end set by God [for everyone’s life] is bound to come - and He alone is all-hearing, all-knowing!
29:6 Hence, whoever strives hard [in God’s cause] does so only for his own good: for, verily, God does not stand in need of anything in all the worlds!
29:7 And as for those who attain to faith and do righteous deeds, We shall most certainly efface their [previous] bad deeds, and shall most certainly reward them in accordance with the best that they ever did.
29:8 Now [among the best of righteous deeds which] We have enjoined upon man [is] goodness towards his parents; yet [even so,] should they endeavour to make thee ascribe divinity, side by side with Me, to something which thy mind cannot accept [as divine], obey then, not: [for] it is unto Me that you all must return, whereupon I shall make you [truly] understand [the right and wrong of] all that you were doing [in life].
29:9 But as for those who have attained to faith and have done righteous deeds, We shall most certainly cause them to join the righteous [in the hereafter as well].
29:10 Now there is among men many a one who says [of himself and of others like him], “We do believe in God” - but whenever he is made to suffer in God’s cause, he thinks that persecution at the hands of man is as [much to be feared, or even more than,] God’s chastisement; whereas, if succour from thy Sustainer comes [to those who truly believe] he is sure to say. “Behold, we have always been with you!” Is not God fully aware of what is in the hearts of all creatures?
29:11 [Yea-] and most certainly will God mark out those who have [truly] attained to faith, and most certainly will He mark out the hypocrites.
29:12 And [He is aware, too, that] they who are bent on denying the truth speak [thus, as it were,] to those who have attained to faith: “Follow our way [of life], and we shall indeed take your sins upon ourselves!” But never could they take upon themselves aught of the sins of those [whom they would thus mislead]: behold, they are liars indeed!
29:13 Yet most certainly will they have to bear their own burdens, and other burdens besides their own; and most certainly will they be called to account on Resurrection Day for all their false assertions!
29:14 And, indeed, [in times long past] We sent forth Noah unto his people, and he dwelt among them a thousand years bar fifty; and then the floods overwhelmed them while they were still lost in evildoing:
29:15 but We saved him, together with all who were in the ark, which We then set up as a symbol [of Our grace] for all people [to remember].
29:16 And Abraham, [too, was inspired by Us] when he said unto his people: “Worship God, and be conscious of Him: this is the best for you, if you but knew it!
29:17 You worship only [lifeless] idols instead of God, and [thus] you give visible shape to a lie! Behold, those [things and beings] that you worship instead of God have it not in their power to provide sustenance for you: seek, then, all [your] sustenance from God, and worship Him [alone] and be grateful to Him: [for] unto Him you shall be brought back!
29:18 “And if you give [me] the lie - well, [other] communities have given the lie [to God's prophets] before your time: but no more is an apostle bound to do than clearly deliver the message [entrusted to him].”
29:19 Are then they [who deny the truth] not aware of how God creates [life] in the first instance, and then brings it forth anew? This, verily, is easy for God!
29:20 Say: “Go all over the earth and behold how [wondrously] He has created [man] in the first instance: and thus, too, will God bring into being your second life for, verily, God has the power to will anything!
29:21 He causes to suffer whomever He wills, and bestows His mercy on whomever He wills; and unto Him you shall be made to return:
29:22 and never - not on earth and not in the skies - can you [hope to] elude Him: and you have none to protect you from God, and none to bring you succour.”
29:23 And [thus it is:] they who are bent on denying the truth of God’s messages and of their [ultimate] meeting with Him - it is they who abandon all hope of My grace and mercy: and it is they whom grievous suffering awaits [in the life to come].
29:24 Now [as for Abraham,] his people’s only answer was, “Slay him, or burn him!” – but God saved him from the fire. Behold, in this [story] there are messages indeed for people who will believe!
29:25 And [Abraham] said: “You have chosen to worship idols instead of God for no other reason than to have a bond of love in the life of this world, between yourselves [and your forebears]: but then, on Resurrection Day, you shall disown one another and curse one another - for the goal of you all will be the fire, and you will have none to succour you.
29:26 Thereupon [his brother’s son] Lot came to believe in him and said: “Verily, I [too] shall forsake the domain of evil [and turn] to my Sustainer: for, verily, He alone is almighty, truly wise!”
29:27 And [as for Abraham,] We bestowed upon him Isaac and [Isaac’s son] Jacob, and caused prophethood and revelation to continue among his offspring. And We vouchsafed him his reward in this world; and, verily, in the life to come [too] he shall find himself among the righteous.
29:28 And Lot, [too, was inspired by Us] when he said unto his people: “Verily, you commit abominations such as none in all the world has ever committed before you!
29:29 Must you indeed approach men [with lust], and thus cut across the way [of nature]? and must you commit these shameful deeds in your open] assemblies?” But his people’s only answer was, “Bring down upon us God’s chastisement, if thou art a man of truth!”
29:30 [And] he prayed: “O my Sustainer! Succour Thou me against these people who spread corruption!”
29:31 And so, when Our [heavenly] messengers came to Abraham with the glad tiding [of the birth of Isaac], they [also] said, “Behold, we are about to destroy the people of that land, for its people are truly evildoers!”
29:32 [And when Abraham] exclaimed, “But Lot lives there!” - they answered: We know fully well who is there; most certainly we shall save him and his household - all but his wife: she will indeed be among those that stay behind.”
29:33 And when Our messengers came unto Lot, he was sorely grieved on their account, seeing that it was beyond his power to shield them; but they said: “Fear not, and grieve not! Behold, we shall save thee and thy household - all but thy wife: she will indeed be among those that stay behind.
29:34 Verily, we shall bring down upon the people of this land a horror from heaven in requital of all their iniquitous doings!”
29:35 And [so it happened; and] thereof, indeed, We have left a clear sign for people who use their reason.
29:36 AND UNTO [the people of] Madyan [We sent] their brother Shu’ayb who thereupon said: “O my people! Worship God [alone], and look forward to the Last Day, and do not act wickedly on earth by spreading corruption!”
29:37 But they gave him the lie. Thereupon an earthquake overtook them: and then they lay lifeless, in their very homes, on the ground.
29:38 AND [the tribes of] Ad and Thamud [too, did We destroy -] as should have become obvious to you from [whatever there remains of] their dwellings. [They perished] because Satan had made their [sinful] doings seem goodly to them, and thus had barred them from the path [of God] despite their having been endowed with the ability to perceive the truth.
29:39 And [thus, too, did We deal with] Qarun and Pharaoh, and Haman: to them had come Moses with all evidence of the truth, but they behaved arrogantly on earth [and rejected him]; and withal, they could not escape [Us].
29:40 For, every one of them, did We take to task for his sin: and so, upon some of them We let loose a deadly storm wind; and some of them were overtaken by a [sudden] blast; and some of them We caused to be swallowed by the earth: and some of them We caused to drown. And it was not God who wronged them, but it was they who had wronged themselves.
29:41 The parable of those who take [beings or forces] other than God for their protectors is that of the spider which makes for itself a house: for, behold, the frailest of all houses is the spiders house. Could they but understand this!
29:42 Verily, God knows whatever it is that men invoke instead of Him for He alone is almighty, truly wise.
29:43 And so We propound these parables unto man: but none can grasp their innermost meaning save those who [of Us] are aware
29:44 [[and hence are certain that] God has created the heavens and the earth in accordance with [an inner] truth: for, behold, in this [very creation] there is a message indeed for all who believe [in Him].
29:45 CONVEY [unto others] whatever of this divine writ has been revealed unto thee, and be constant in prayer: for, behold, prayer restrains [man] from loathsome deeds and from all that runs counter to reason; and remembrance of God is indeed the greatest [good]. And God knows all that you do.
29:46 And do not argue with the followers of earlier revelation otherwise than in a most kindly manner - unless it be such of them as are bent on evildoing and say: “We believe in that which has been bestowed from on high upon us, as well as that which has been bestowed upon you: or our God and your God is one and the same, and it is unto Him that We [all] surrender ourselves.”
29:47 For it is thus that We have bestowed this divine writ from on high upon thee [O Muhammad]. And they to whom we have vouchsafed this divine writ believe in it just as among those [followers of earlier revelation] there are some who believe in it. And none could knowingly reject Our messages unless it be such as would deny [an obvious] truth:
29:48 for, [O Muhammad,] thou hast never been able to recite any divine writ ere this one [was revealed], nor didst thou ever transcribe one with your own hand or else, they who try to disprove the truth [of thy revelation] might indeed have had cause to doubt [it].
29:49 Nay, but this [divine writ] consists of messages clear to the hearts of all who are gifted with [innate] knowledge and none could knowingly reject Our messages unless it be such as would do wrong [to themselves].
29:50 And yet they say, “Why have no miraculous signs ever been bestowed upon him from on high by his Sustainer?” Say: “Miracles are in the power of God alone; and as for me - I am but a plain warner.”
29:51 Why - is it not enough for them that We have bestowed this divine writ on thee from on high, to be conveyed [by thee] to them? For, verily, in it is [manifested Our] grace, and a reminder to people who will believe.
29:52 Say [unto those who will not believe]: “God is witness enough between me and you! He knows all that is in the heavens and on earth; and they who are bent on believing in what is false and vain, and thus on denying God - it is they, they who shall be the losers!”
29:53 Now they challenge thee to hasten the coming upon them of [God’s] chastisement: and indeed, had not a term been set [for it by God], that suffering would already have come upon them! But indeed, it will most certainly come upon them of a sudden, and they will be taken unawares.
29:54 They challenge thee to hasten the coming upon them of [God’s] chastisement: but, verily, hell is bound to encompass all who deny the truth –
29:55 [encompass them] on the Day when suffering will overwhelm them from above them and from beneath their feet, whereupon He shall say: “Taste [now the fruit of] your own doings!”
29:56 O YOU servants of Mine who have attained to faith! Behold, wide is Mine earth: worship Me, then, Me alone!
29:57 Every human being is bound to taste death, [and] in the end unto Us shall all be brought back:
29:58 whereupon unto those who have attained to faith and wrought good works We shall most certainly assign mansions in that paradise through which running waters flow, therein to abide: how excellent a reward for those who labour –
29:59 those who are patient in adversity and in their Sustainer place their trust!
29:60 And how many a living creature is there that takes no thought of its own sustenance; [the while] God provides for it as [He provides] for you - since He alone is all-hearing, all-knowing.
29:61 And thus it is [with most people]: if thou ask them, “Who is it that has created the heavens and the earth, and made the sun and the moon subservient [to His laws]?” - they will surely answer, “God.” How perverted, then, are their minds!
29:62 God grants abundant sustenance, or gives it in scant measure, to whichever He wills of His creatures: for, behold, God has full knowledge of everything.
29:63 And thus it is: if thou ask them, “Who is it that sends down water from the skies, giving life thereby to the earth after it had been lifeless?” - they will surely answer, “God.” Say thou: “[Since this is so,] all praise is due to God [alone]!” But most of them will not use their reason:
29:64 for, [if they did, they would know that] the life of this world is nothing but a passing delight and a play - whereas, behold, the life in the hereafter is indeed the only [true] life: if they but knew this!
29:65 And so, when they embark on a ship [and find themselves in danger], they call unto God, [at that moment] sincere in their faith in Him alone; but as soon as He has brought them safe ashore, they [begin to] ascribe to imaginary powers a share in His divinity:
29:66 and thus they show utter ingratitude for all that We have vouchsafed them, and go on [thoughtlessly] enjoying their worldly life.
29:67 Are they, then, not aware that We have set up a sanctuary secure [for those who believe in Us], the while all around them men are being carried away [by fear and despair]? Will they, then, [continue to] believe in things false and vain, and thus deny God’s blessings.
29:68 And who could be more wicked than he who attributes his own lying inventions to God, or gives the lie to the truth when it comes unto him [through revelation]? Is not hell the [proper] abode for all who [thus] deny the truth?
29:69 But as for those who strive hard in Our cause -We shall most certainly guide them onto paths that lead unto Us: for, behold, God is indeed with the doers of good.


   


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