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al-`Ankabut (The Spider)
as rendered by N J Dawood 2014
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N J Dawood (2014) rendition of Surah The Spider(al-`Ankabut)
29:1 ALIF lām mīm.
29:2 Do people think that once they say: ‘We are believers‘, they will be left alone and not be tested?
29:3 We tested those who have gone before them. God surely knows the truthful, and He surely knows the liars.
29:4 Or do the evil-doers think they will escape Our reach? How ill they judge!
29:5 He that aspires to meet God must know that God‘s appointed time is sure to come. He alone hears all and knows all.
29:6 He that fights for God‘s cause fights for himself. God needs the help of none.
29:7 Those that have faith and do good works, We shall surely cleanse of their sins and requite according to their noblest deeds.
29:8 We have enjoined man to show kindness to his parents. But if they bid you serve besides Me deities you know nothing of, do not obey them. To Me you will all return, and I shall declare to you all that you have done.
29:9 Those that believe and do good works We shall assuredly admit among the righteous.
29:10 Some profess to believe in God, yet when they suffer in God‘s cause they confuse the persecution of man with the punishment of God. But if your Lord gives you victory, they are sure to say: ‘We were on your side.‘ Does not God know best the thoughts of people?
29:11 God well knows the true believers, and He well knows the hypocrites.
29:12 The unbelievers say to the faithful: ‘Follow us, and we will bear the burden of your sins.‘ But they will bear none of their sins. They are surely lying.
29:13 They shall bear their own burdens, and other burdens besides their burdens; and on the Day of Resurrection they shall surely be questioned about the lies they fabricated.
29:14 We sent forth Noah to his people, and he dwelt among them for a thousand years less fifty.¹ Then in their sinfulness the Flood took them.
29:15 But We delivered him and those who were in the ark, and made the event a sign for mankind.
29:16 And tell of Abraham. He said to his people: ‘Serve God and fear Him. That would be best for you, if you but knew it.
29:17 You worship idols besides God and fabricate falsehoods. Those whom you serve besides God cannot give you your daily bread. Therefore seek your daily bread from God, and worship Him. Give thanks to Him, for to Him you shall return.
29:18 If you disbelieve, other communities before you likewise disbelieved. Yet the apostle‘s duty is only to render the warning.‘
29:19 Do they not see how God brings the Creation into being, and then restores it? Surely that is easy enough for God.
29:20 Say: ‘Roam the earth and see how God has brought the Creation into being. Then will God initiate the Latter Creation. God has power over all things;
29:21 He punishes whom He will and shows mercy to whom He pleases. To Him shall you be recalled.‘
29:22 Neither on earth nor in heaven shall you escape His reach: nor have you any besides God to protect or help you.
29:23 Those that disbelieve God‘s revelations and deny that they will ever meet Him shall despair of My mercy. Woeful punishment awaits them.
29:24 His people‘s only reply was: ‘Kill him!‘ or ‘Burn him!‘ But from the fire God delivered him. Surely in this there are signs for true believers.
29:25 He said: ‘You have chosen idols instead of God, but your love of them will last only in this nether life. On the Day of Resurrection you shall disown one another, and you shall curse one another. Your abode shall be the Fire, and none shall succour you.‘
29:26 Lot believed in him. He said: ‘I will fly this land whither my Lord bids me.¹ He is the Almighty, the Wise One.‘
29:27 We gave him Isaac and Jacob and bestowed on his descendants prophethood and the Book. We gave him his reward in this life, and in the life to come he shall dwell among the righteous.
29:28 And Lot: he said to his people: ‘You commit lewd acts which no other nation has committed before you.
29:29 You lust after men and assault them on your highways. At your gatherings you perpetrate abominations.‘ But his people‘s only answer was: ‘Bring down the scourge of God upon us, if what you say be true.‘
29:30 Lord,‘ said he, ‘deliver me from these degenerate people.‘
29:31 And when Our emissaries brought Abraham the joyful tidings,² they said: ‘We are to destroy the people of this city, for its people have done wrong.
29:32 He said: ‘But Lot dwells in it.‘ ‘We well know who dwells in it,‘ they said. ‘We shall deliver him and all his household, except his wife, who shall remain behind.‘
29:33 And when Our emissaries came to Lot, he was troubled and distressed on their account. They said: ‘Have no fear, and do not grieve. We shall deliver you and all your household, except your wife, who shall remain behind.
29:34 We shall bring down a scourge from heaven upon the people of this city to punish them for their sins.‘
29:35 Surely the ruins We left of that city are a veritable sign for those that can understand.
29:36 And to the people of Midian, their kin Shu‘aib. He said: ‘Serve God, my people. Look forward to the Last Day. Do not corrupt the earth with wickedness.‘
29:37 But they denied him. The earthquake took them, and when morning came they were crouching lifeless in their homes.
29:38 And Ād and Thamūd: this is vouched for by their dwellings. Satan had made their deeds seem fair to them and debarred them from the right path, keen-sighted though they were.
29:39 And Korah, Pharaoh, and Haman! Moses came to them with veritable signs, but they behaved arrogantly in the land, powerless though they were to escape Us:
29:40 and in their sinfulness, one and all, We smote them. On some We sent down a violent whirlwind; others the Cry overtook; some We caused to be swallowed up by the earth, and yet others We overwhelmed by the Flood. God did not wrong them, but they wronged themselves.
29:41 Those who serve other masters besides God may be compared to the spider which builds a cobweb for itself. Surely the spider‘s is the frailest of all dwellings, if they but knew it.
29:42 God knows whatever they invoke besides Him; He is the Almighty, the Wise One.
29:43 Such are the comparisons we make for the instruction of people; but none will grasp their meaning save those that have knowledge.
29:44 God created the heavens and the earth with Truth. Surely in this there is a sign for true believers.
29:45 Proclaim the portions of the Book that have been revealed to you and be steadfast in prayer: prayer fends off all that is foul and reprehensible. But your foremost duty is to remember God. God has knowledge of what you do.
29:46 And be courteous when you argue with the People of the Book, except with those among them who do wrong. Say: ‘We believe in that which has been revealed to us and was revealed to you. Our God and your God is one. To Him we submit as Muslims.‘
29:47 Thus have We revealed the Book to you. Those to whom We gave the Book believe in it, as do some of your own people. Only the unbelievers deny Our signs.
29:48 Never have you¹ read a book before this, nor have you ever transcribed one with your right hand. Had you done either, the unbelievers might have doubted.
29:49 But to those who were given knowledge it is a veritable sign. Only the wrongdoers deny Our signs.
29:50 They say: ‘Why have no signs been sent down to him by his Lord?‘ Say: ‘Signs are in the hands of God. My mission is only to give plain warning.‘
29:51 Is it not sufficient for them that We have revealed to you the Book for their instruction? Surely in this there is a blessing and an Admonition for true believers.
29:52 Say: ‘Sufficient is God as my witness, and your witness. He knows all that is in the heavens and the earth. Those who believe in falsehood and deny God will surely be the losers.‘
29:53 And they challenge you to hasten on the scourge. Had there not been a time appointed, the scourge would have long since taken them. Indeed, it will come down upon them suddenly, and catch them unawares.
29:54 They challenge you to hasten on the scourge. But Hell will encompass the unbelievers,
29:55 when the scourge will assail them from above and from beneath their feet, and God will say: ‘Taste the reward of your own deeds.‘
29:56 You that are true believers among My servants, My earth is vast. Therefore serve Me.
29:57 Every soul shall taste death, and then to Us shall you be recalled.
29:58 Those that embrace the true Faith and do good works We shall lodge for ever in the mansions of Paradise, where rivers will roll at their feet. Blessed is the reward
29:59 of those who labour patiently and put their trust in their Lord.
29:60 Countless are the beasts that cannot fend for themselves. God provides for them, as He provides for you. He alone hears all and knows all.
29:61 If you ask them who it is that has created the heavens and the earth, and subdued the sun and the moon, they will surely say: ‘God.‘ How then can they turn away from Him?
29:62 God gives abundantly to whom He will among his servants, and sparingly also. God has knowledge of all things.
29:63 And if you ask them who it is that sends down water from the sky and thus resurrects the earth after its death, they will surely say: ‘God.‘ Say: ‘Praise, then, be to God!‘ But the greater part of them are senseless.
29:64 The life of this world is but a sport and a diversion. It is the life to come that is the true life: if they but knew it.
29:65 When they embark they pray to God with all religious fervour; but when He brings them safe to land, behold they serve other gods besides Him,
29:66 showing ingratitude for what We gave them and revelling in wanton ease. But they shall learn.
29:67 Do they not see how We have given them a sanctuary of safety,¹ while all around them people are carried off by force? Would they believe in falsehood and deny God‘s goodness?
29:68 And who is more wicked than the man who invents a falsehood about God and denies the Truth when it is declared to him? Is there not in Hell a resting place for the unbelievers?
29:69 Those that fight for Our cause We will surely guide to Our own paths. Surely God is with the righteous.


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