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Saba` (Saba, Sheba)
as rendered by N J Dawood 2014
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N J Dawood (2014) rendition of Surah Saba, Sheba(Saba`)
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34:1 PRAISE BE to God, to whom belongs all that the heavens and the earth contain! Praise be to Him in the world to come. He is the Wise One, the All-knowing.
34:2 He has knowledge of all that goes into the earth and all that springs up from it; all that comes down from heaven and all that ascends to it. He is the Compassionate, the Forgiving One.
34:3 The unbelievers say: ‘The Hour will never come upon us.‘ Say: ‘Yes, by the Lord, it is surely coming! He knows all that is hidden. Not an atom‘s weight in the heavens or the earth escapes Him; nor is there anything smaller or greater but is recorded in a veritable book.
34:4 He will surely recompense those who have faith and do good works; they shall be forgiven and a rich provision shall be made for them.
34:5 But those who strive to confute Our revelations shall suffer the torment of a harrowing scourge.‘
34:6 Those endowed with knowledge can see that what has been revealed to you from your Lord is the Truth, leading to the path of the Almighty, the Praised One.
34:7 The unbelievers say: ‘Shall we show you a man¹ who would have you know that when you have been torn into shreds you will be raised in a new creation?
34:8 Has he invented a falsehood about God, or is he a man possessed?‘ Truly, those who deny the life to come are doomed to torment, and they have strayed far into error.
34:9 Do they not see what is before them and behind them in heaven and earth? If We will, We can cause the earth to cave in beneath their feet or let fragments of the sky fall upon them. Surely there is a sign in this for every penitent man.
34:10 On David We bestowed Our bounty. We said: ‘Mountains, and you birds, echo his songs of praise.‘ We made iron pliant to him, saying:
34:11 Make coats of mail and measure their links with care. Do what is right: I am watching all your actions.‘
34:12 And to Solomon We subjected the wind, travelling a month‘s journey on a morning and a month‘s journey on an evening. We gave him a spring flowing with molten brass, and jinn who served him by leave of his Lord. Those of them who did not do Our bidding We shall chasten with the torment of the Conflagration.
34:13 They made for him whatever he pleased: shrines and statues, basins as large as watering-troughs, and built-in cauldrons. We said: ‘Give thanks, House of David.‘ Yet few of My servants are truly thankful.
34:14 And when We had decreed his death, they did not know that he was dead until they saw a worm eating away his staff. And when his corpse fell down, the jinn realized that had they had knowledge of the unknown, they would not have remained in shameful torment.
34:15 For the natives of Sheba there was indeed a sign in their dwelling-place: a garden on their right and a garden on their left. We said to them: ‘Eat of what your Lord has given you and render thanks to Him. Pleasant is your land and forgiving is your Lord.‘
34:16 But they paid no heed. So We let loose upon them the waters of the dam and replaced their gardens by two others bearing bitter fruit, tamarisks, and a few nettles.
34:17 Thus did We punish them for their ingratitude: do We punish any but the ungrateful?
34:18 Between them and the cities that We have blessed, We placed roadside hamlets so that they could journey to and fro in measured stages. We said: ‘Travel through them by night and by day in safety.‘
34:19 But they said: ‘Lord, make the stages of our travel longer.‘ They sinned against their souls; so We held them up as an example and tore them into shreds. Surely there is a sign in this for every steadfast, thankful person.
34:20 Satan had judged them rightly; they followed him all, except for a band of true believers.
34:21 Yet had he no power over them: Our only aim was to recognize those who believed in the life to come and those who were in doubt. Your Lord takes cognizance of all things.
34:22 Say: ‘Call on those whom you deify besides God. They do not control an atom‘s weight in the heavens or the earth, nor have they any share in either. Nor has He any helpers among them.‘
34:23 None can intercede with God save him who has received His sanction. When fear is banished from their hearts, they shall ask each other: ‘What has your Lord ordained?‘ ‘The Truth,‘ they shall answer. ‘He is the Most High, the Supreme One.‘
34:24 Say: ‘Who provides for you from the heavens and the earth?‘ Say: ‘God. Either we or you are right, or clearly in the wrong.‘
34:25 Say: ‘You are not accountable for our sins, nor are we accountable for your actions.
34:26 Say: ‘Our Lord will bring us all together, then He will rightly judge between us. He is the All-knowing Judge.‘
34:27 Say: ‘Show me those whom you have named with Him as partners. Never. God alone is the Almighty One, the Wise One.‘
34:28 We have sent you forth to all mankind, so that you may give them joyful tidings and forewarn them. But the larger part of mankind have no knowledge.
34:29 And they ask: ‘When will this promise be fulfilled, if what you say be true?‘
34:30 Say: ‘Your day is already appointed. Not for one hour can you hold it back, nor can you hurry it on.‘
34:31 And the unbelievers say: ‘We will never believe in this Koran, nor in in what had come before it.‘ If only you could see the wrongdoers when they are brought before their Lord! Bandying charges with one another, those who were despised will say to those who deemed themselves mighty: ‘But for you, we would have been believers.‘
34:32 Then those who deemed themselves mighty will say to those who were despised: ‘Was it we who debarred you from God‘s guidance after it was given you? No. You yourselves were wrongdoers.‘
34:33 By no means,‘ the others will rejoin. ‘You have plotted, night and day, bidding us disbelieve in God and set up rivals to Him.‘ And they will repent in secret when they see the scourge. We will put chains round the necks of the unbelievers. Shall they not be rewarded but according to their deeds?
34:34 We have sent no apostle to any city whose message was not denied by it‘s affluent people.
34:35 The unbelievers say: ‘We have been given greater wealth and more children than the faithful. Surely we shall not be punished.‘
34:36 Say: ‘My Lord gives abundantly to whom He will and sparingly also. But most do not know it.‘
34:37 Neither your riches nor your children shall bring you one jot nearer to Us. Those that have faith and do what is right shall be doubly rewarded for their deeds: in the High Pavilions they shall dwell in peace.
34:38 But those that strive to confute Our revelations shall be summoned up.
34:39 Say: ‘My Lord gives abundantly to whom He will of His creatures, and sparingly also. ‘Whatever you give in alms He will recompense you for it. He is the most munificent Provider.‘
34:40 On the day He herds them all together, He will say to the angels: ‘Was it you that they worshipped?‘
34:41 Glory be to You!‘ they will say. ‘You are our defender against them! They worshipped jinn, and it was in jinn that most of them believed.‘
34:42 On that day you shall be powerless to help or harm one another. To the wrongdoers We shall say: ‘Taste the torment of the Fire, which you persistently denied.‘
34:43 When Our clear revelations are recited to them, they say: ‘This is but a man who would turn you away from the gods your fathers worshipped.‘ And they say: ‘This¹ is nothing but an invented falsehood.‘ While those who denied the Truth when it was given them say: ‘This is but sorcery manifest.‘
34:44 Yet have We given them no scriptures to study, nor have We sent before you any apostle to warn them.
34:45 Those who have gone before them likewise denied Our revelations. They were ten times as prosperous and mighty:¹ yet they rejected My apostles. And then how terrible was the way I rejected them!
34:46 Say: ‘With one thing I admonish you: stand up before God in pairs or singly and ponder whether your compatriot² is indeed possessed. He is sent forth only to forewarn you of a grievous scourge.‘
34:47 Say: ‘I demand no recompense of you: keep it for yourselves. None but God can reward me; and He is the witness of all things.‘
34:48 Say: ‘My Lord hurls forth the Truth. He has knowledge of all that is hidden.
34:49 Say: ‘Truth has come. Falsehood has vanished and shall return no more.‘³
34:50 Say: ‘If I am in error, the loss is surely mine; but if I am in the right, it is thanks to that which my Lord has revealed to me. He hears all and is near at hand.‘
34:51 If you could only see the unbelievers when they are seized with terror! There shall be no escape; they shall be taken from their graves.⁴
34:52 They will say: ‘We believe in Him.‘ But how will they attain the Faith when they are far away,
34:53 since they at first denied it, and sneered at the unseen when they were far away?
34:54 They shall be barred from their desires, as were those before them; they, too, were perplexed with doubt.


   


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