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AYAH an-Nisa` 4:153 

Arabic Source and Roman Transliteration
Arabic يَسْأَلُكَ أَهْلُ الْكِتَابِ أَن تُنَزِّلَ عَلَيْهِمْ كِتَابًا مِّنَ السَّمَاءِ فَقَدْ سَأَلُوا مُوسَىٰ أَكْبَرَ مِن ذَٰلِكَ فَقَالُوا أَرِنَا اللَّهَ جَهْرَةً فَأَخَذَتْهُمُ الصَّاعِقَةُ بِظُلْمِهِمْ ثُمَّ اتَّخَذُوا الْعِجْلَ مِن بَعْدِ مَا جَاءَتْهُمُ الْبَيِّنَاتُ فَعَفَوْنَا عَن ذَٰلِكَ وَآتَيْنَا مُوسَىٰ سُلْطَانًا مُّبِينًا zoom
Transliteration Yas-aluka ahlu alkitabi an tunazzila AAalayhim kitaban mina alssama-i faqad saaloo moosa akbara min thalika faqaloo arina Allaha jahratan faakhathat-humu alssaAAiqatu bithulmihim thumma ittakhathoo alAAijla min baAAdi ma jaat-humu albayyinatu faAAafawna AAan thalika waatayna moosa sultanan mubeenan zoom
Transliteration-2 yasaluka ahlu l-kitābi an tunazzila ʿalayhim kitāban mina l-samāi faqad sa-alū mūsā akbara min dhālika faqālū arinā l-laha jahratan fa-akhadhathumu l-ṣāʿiqatu biẓul'mihim thumma ittakhadhū l-ʿij'la min baʿdi mā jāathumu l-bayinātu faʿafawnā ʿan dhālika waātaynā mūsā sul'ṭānan mubīnan zoom
Literal
(Word by Word)
 Ask you (the) People (of) the Book that you bring down to them a book from the heaven. Then indeed, they (had) asked Musa greater than that for they said, "Show us Allah manifestly," so struck them the thunderbolt for their wrongdoing. Then they took the calf (for worship) after [what] came to them the clear proofs, then We forgave them for that. And We gave Musa an authority clear. zoom


Generally Accepted Translations of the Meaning
Muhammad Asad THE FOLLOWERS of the Old Testament demand of thee [O Prophet] that thou cause a revelation to be sent down to them from heaven. And an even greater thing than this did they demand of Moses when they said, "Make us see God face to face" - whereupon the thunderbolt of punishment overtook them for this their wickedness. After that, they took to worshipping the [golden] calf - and this after all evidence of the truth had come unto them! None the less, We effaced this [sin of theirs], and vouchsafed unto Moses a clear proof [of the truth], zoom
M. M. Pickthall The people of the Scripture ask of thee that thou shouldst cause an (actual) Book to descend upon them from heaven. They asked a greater thing of Moses aforetime, for they said: Show us Allah plainly. The storm of lightning seized them for their wickedness. Then (even) after that) they chose the calf (for worship) after clear proofs (of Allah's Sovereignty) had come unto them. And We forgave them that! And We bestowed on Moses evident authority. zoom
Yusuf Ali (Saudi Rev. 1985) The people of the Book ask thee to cause a book to descend to them from heaven: Indeed they asked Moses for an even greater (miracle), for they said: "Show us Allah in public," but they were dazed for their presumption, with thunder and lightning. Yet they worshipped the calf even after clear signs had come to them; even so we forgave them; and gave Moses manifest proofs of authority. zoom
Yusuf Ali (Orig. 1938) The people of the Book ask thee to cause a book to descend to them from heaven: Indeed they asked Moses for an even greater (miracle), for they said: "Show us God in public," but they were dazed for their presumption, with thunder and lightnin g. Yet they worshipped the calf even after clear signs had come to them; even so we forgave them; and gave Moses manifest proofs of authority. zoom
Shakir The followers of the Book ask you to bring down to them a book from heaven; so indeed they demanded of Musa a greater thing than that, for they said: Show us Allah manifestly; so the lightning overtook them on account of their injustice. Then they took the calf (for a god), after clear signs had come to them, but We pardoned this; and We gave to Musa clear authority. zoom
Wahiduddin Khan The People of the Book ask you to bring down for them a book from heaven. Of Moses they demanded a greater thing than that. They said to him: Show us God face to face. A thunderbolt struck them for their wickedness. After that, they took to worshipping the [golden] calf, after all evidence of the truth had come to them! Yet We pardoned even that and bestowed on Moses clear authority. zoom
Dr. Laleh Bakhtiar The People of the Book ask thee that thou hast sent down to them a Book from heaven. Surely, they had asked Moses for greater than that. Then, they said: Cause us to see God publicly. So a thunderbolt took them for their injustice. Again, they took the calf to themselves after what drew near to them—the clear portents. Even so We pardoned that. And We gave Moses a clear authority. zoom
T.B.Irving The People of the Book ask you to have a book sent down from Heaven for them. They asked Moses for something even greater than that, and said: "Show us God directly." The Thunderbolt caught them in wrongdoing. Then they adopted the Calf even after explanations had come to them. We still pardoned that, and gave Moses clear authority. zoom
The Clear Quran, Dr. Mustafa Khattab The People of the Book demand that you ˹O Prophet˺ bring down for them a revelation in writing from heaven. They demanded what is even greater than this from Moses, saying, “Make Allah visible to us!” So a thunderbolt struck them for their wrongdoing. Then they took the calf for worship after receiving clear signs. Still We forgave them for that ˹after their repentance˺ and gave Moses compelling proof. zoom
Safi Kaskas The People of the Book demand that you [Prophet] make a Book physically come down to them from heaven. They demanded even more than this from Moses when they said, "Let us see God face to face," and were then struck by a thunderbolt of punishment for their presumption. Even after clear revelations had come down to them, they started worshipping the calf. We pardoned this and gave Moses clear authority zoom
Abdul Hye  The people of the Scripture ask you that you cause to descend upon them a book from heaven. Surely they have asked Moses greater than that, they said: “Show us Allah in public.” So they were struck with a thunderbolt for their wickedness. Then they took (to worship) the calf even after what came to them with clear signs. (Even so) We forgave them and We gave Moses a clear authority. zoom
The Study Quran The People of the Book ask thee to bring a book down upon them from Heaven; indeed, they asked a greater thing of Moses, for they said, “Show us God openly,” whereupon the thunderbolt seized them for their wrongdoing. Then they took up the calf, even after clear proofs had come to them. Yet, We pardoned this and We gave Moses a manifest authority. zoom
[The Monotheist Group] (2011 Edition) The people of the Scripture ask you to bring down to them a scripture from the heavens. They had asked Moses for even more than that, for they said: "Let us see God plainly!", so the lightning bolt took them for their wickedness. Then they took the calf after the clarity had come to them, and We pardoned them for this; We gave Moses a clear authority. zoom
Abdel Haleem The People of the Book demand that you [Prophet] make a book physically come down to them from heaven, but they demanded even more than that of Moses when they said, ‘Show us God face to face,’ and were struck by the thunderbolt for their presumption. Even after clear revelations had come down to them, they took the calf as an object of worship, yet We pardoned this, and gave Moses clear authority; zoom
Abdul Majid Daryabadi The people of the Book ask thee to bring down a Book to them from the heaven. But surely they asked Musa a thing greater than that; they said: shew us God manifestly; whencefore the thunderbolt overtook them for their wrong-doing. Then they took a calf after there had come unto them the evidences. Even so We pardoned that, and We gave Musa a manifest authority. zoom
Ahmed Ali The people of the Book demand of you to bring for them a book from heaven. But of Moses they had asked a bigger thing, and demanded: "Show us God face to face." They were struck by lightning then as punishment for their wickedness. Even then they made the calf, when clear signs had reached them. Still We forgave them and gave Moses clear authority. zoom
Aisha Bewley The People of the Book will ask you to bring down a Book from heaven to them. They asked Musa for even more than that. They said, ´Let us see Allah with our own eyes.´ So the lightning-bolt struck them down for their wrongdoing. Then they adopted the Calf after the Clear Signs had come to them, but We pardoned them for that and gave Musa clear authority. zoom
Ali Ünal The People of the Book ask you to cause a Book to be sent down on them from heaven. (O Messenger, let this not shock you, for) they asked an even greater thing than this of Moses, when they said, "Show God to us openly," and the thunderbolt seized them for their wrong-doing. Then they adopted the (golden) calf as deity – and this after the (miracles and other) clear proofs of the truth had come to them. Yet We (accepted their atonement and) pardoned them that; and We granted Moses (the Book and the Criterion, and thereby) a clear proof and authority. zoom
Ali Quli Qara'i The People of the Book ask you to bring down for them a Book from the sky. Certainly they asked Moses for [something] greater than that, for they said, ‘Show us Allah visibly,’ whereat a thunderbolt seized them for their wrongdoing. Then they took up the Calf [for worship], after all the manifest proofs that had come to them. Yet We excused that, and We gave Moses a manifest authority. zoom
Hamid S. Aziz The people of the Book will ask you to bring down for them a book from heaven; but they asked Moses a greater thing than that, for they said, "Show us Allah openly;" but the thunderbolt caught them in their injustice. Then they chose the calf, a zoom
Muhammad Mahmoud Ghali The population of the Book (Or: Family of the Book, i.e., the Jews and Christians) ask you to (keep) (Moses) bringing down upon them a Book from the heaven; yet they already asked Musa far greater than that; So they said, "Show us Allah openly." Then the stunning (thunderbolt) took them for their injustice. Thereafter they took to themselves the Calf, even after the supreme evidences came to them, yet We were clement (towards them) for that, and We brought M?s'a an evident all-binding authority. zoom
Muhammad Sarwar (Muhammad), the People of the Book ask you to make a Book descend to them from the heavens. However, they had asked Moses for things much harder to do than this, by saying, "Show us God in person." Thunder and lightning struck them because of their unjust demands. Despite all the evidence that had come to them, they started to worship the calf, but We forgave them for their sins and gave Moses clear authority. zoom
Muhammad Taqi Usmani The People of the Book ask you to bring down upon them a Book from the heavens, (which is not strange,) as they had asked Musa something greater than that when they said, .Make us see Allah openly. So, the thunderbolt took them for the wrong they did. Later, they took to themselves the calf, even after the clear signs had come to them. Then, We forgave them, and gave Musa an open authority. zoom
Shabbir Ahmed (O Prophet) People of the Scripture ask you to bring a published book from the sky. They made a greater demand to Moses when they said, "Show us Allah face to face". And their psyche was such that when a bolt of lightning struck around them, they fell in fear (2:55). They had displaced the true belief with falsehood. After that, they chose the calf for worship although they had seen the Manifest Truth. Yet, We pardoned them and gave Moses evident authority (as a blessing for their guidance). zoom
Syed Vickar Ahamed The People of the Book ask you to make a book to come down to them from heaven: Indeed, they asked Musa (Moses) for an even greater (miracle), because they said: "Show us Allah in public," but they were overpowered by what they had asked for, with thunder and lightning because of their wrongdoing. Then they worshipped the calf even after clear proofs had come to them; (Even) then We forgave them; And We gave Musa (Moses) clear proofs of authority. zoom
Umm Muhammad (Sahih International) The People of the Scripture ask you to bring down to them a book from the heaven. But they had asked of Moses [even] greater than that and said, "Show us Allah outright," so the thunderbolt struck them for their wrongdoing. Then they took the calf [for worship] after clear evidences had come to them, and We pardoned that. And We gave Moses a clear authority. zoom
Farook Malik The People of the Book ask you to bring down for them a book from Heaven. From Moses they demanded an even harder miracle than that. They asked him: "Make us see Allah with our own eyes." As a result of their wickedness, the thunderbolt overtook them. Then they took the calf for worship after receiving clear revelations. After all that, We still pardoned them and gave to Moses clear authority. zoom
Dr. Munir Munshey The people of the book demand that you cause a book to descend from the heavens in their presence. They had made even greater (and more unreasonable) demands from Musa. They said, "Let us see Allah plainly (with our own eyes)." Because of their wickedness, a lightning thunder-bolt struck them down. Later, even after clear proofs had come to them, they took the calf as their god. Yet, We forgave that (transgression). We gave Musa, a manifest mandate. zoom
Dr. Kamal Omar Ahl-ul-Kitab (people who possess Al-Kitab) ask you that you cause to descend on them a book (specifically revealed to you) from heaven. So indeed, they asked Musa (for even) greater than that, so they said: “Show us Allah physically,” Then As-Saiqah overtook them because of their transgression. Additionally, they picked up the calf (for worship) after that which came to them as Al-Bayyinat. Then We pardoned (even) that. And We delivered to Musa Sultanan Mobina. zoom
Talal A. Itani (new translation) The People of the Scripture challenge you to bring down to them a book from the sky. They had asked Moses for something even greater. They said, 'Show us God plainly.' The thunderbolt struck them for their wickedness. Then they took the calf for worship, even after the clear proofs had come to them. Yet We pardoned that, and We gave Moses a clear authority. zoom
Maududi The People of the Book now ask of you to have a Book come down on them from heaven; indeed they asked of Moses even greater things than this, for they said: ´Make us see Allah with our own eyes´ - whereupon the thunderbolt suddenly smote them for their wickedness. Then they took to worshipping the calf after clear signs had come to them. Still, We forgave them, and conferred a manifest commandment upon Moses, zoom
Ali Bakhtiari Nejad The people of the book ask you to send down to them a book from the sky. Indeed they asked for greater than this from Moses and they said: show us God openly. So the lightning took them for their wrongdoing. Then they took the calf (for worship) after the clear proofs came to them, but We excused them for that, and We gave Moses a clear mandate. zoom
A.L. Bilal Muhammad et al (2018) The people of the Book ask you to cause a book to descend to them from heaven. Indeed, they asked Moses for an even greater miracle for they said, “Show us God visibly.” But they were dazed for their presumption, with thunder and lightning. Still they worshipped the calf even after clear signs had come to them. Even then, we forgave them, and gave Moses clear proofs of authority. zoom
[The Monotheist Group] (2013 Edition) The people of the Book ask you to bring down to them a book from the heaven. They had asked Moses for even more than that, for they said: "Show us God openly!" So the lightning strike took them for their wickedness. Then they took the calf after the clarity had come to them, and We pardoned them for this; We gave Moses a clear authority. zoom
Mohammad Shafi The people of the Book ask you to bring down to them a book from the heaven. They had demanded, of Moses, a greater thing than that! They had said, "Show Allah to us openly." So then the thunderbolt struck them because of their transgression. They then took to the calf, after clear signs had come to them.We pardoned them even that! And We gave Moses a clear proof of authority. zoom

Controversial, deprecated, or status undetermined works
Bijan Moeinian The people of the scripture will ask you to perform a miracle and ask God to send down a divine book from the heaven [as a proof to your claim for prophet hood.] Never mind them as these are the same people who asked Moses for even greater miracle. They said: “Show us God in person.” They [naturally could not stand the presence of the Lord and] were caught by thunder and lightening for their audacity. In spite of all that, they turned into cow worshipping! [This proves that no miracle can change their behavior/ attitude.] Even so I forgave them and blessed Moses with the most amazing miracles. zoom
Faridul Haque O dear Prophet (Mohammed - peace and blessings be upon him) the People given the Book(s) ask you, to cause a Book to be sent down on them from heaven - so they had asked something even greater from Moosa, for they said, "Show Allah to us, clearly" - so the thunder seized them on account of their sins; then they chose the calf (for worship) after clear signs had come to them, then We forgave this; and We bestowed Moosa with a clear dominance. zoom
Hasan Al-Fatih Qaribullah The People of the Book ask you to bring down upon them a Book from heaven. Of Moses they asked greater than that, they said to him: 'Show us Allah openly. ' And a thunderbolt took them for their evil doing. Then they took to themselves the calf, after the clear proofs had come to them, yet We forgave that and We gave Moses clear authority. zoom
Maulana Muhammad Ali The People of the Book ask thee to bring down to them a Book from heaven; indeed they demanded of Moses a greater thing than that, for they said: Show us Allah manifestly. So destructive punishment overtook them on account of their wrongdoing. Then they took the calf (for a god), after clear signs had come to them, but We pardoned this. And We gave Moses clear authority. zoom
Muhammad Ahmed - Samira The Book's people ask/question you, that to descend on them a book from the sky/space, so they had asked Moses greater than that, so they said: "Show us God publicly/openly." So the fire falling from the sky accompanied by thunderous noise punished/took them with their injustice/oppression, then they took the calf from after what came to them (from) the evidences, so We forgave/pardoned on that, and We gave Moses evident proof . zoom
Sher Ali The people of the Book ask thee to bring down upon them a Book from heaven. They asked Moses a greater thing than this. They said, `Show us ALLAH openly.' Thereupon a destructive punishment overtook them because of their transgression. Then they took the calf for worship after clear Signs had come to them, but WE pardoned even that. And WE gave Moses a manifest authority. zoom
Rashad Khalifa The people of the scripture challenge you to bring down to them a book from the sky! They have asked Moses for more than that, saying, "Show us GOD, physically." Consequently, the lightning struck them, as a consequence of their audacity. Additionally, they worshiped the calf, after all the miracles they had seen. Yet, we pardoned all this. We supported Moses with profound miracles. zoom
Ahmed Raza Khan (Barelvi) 'O beloved! (Prophet) The people of the Book ask you to bring down a book upon them from heaven but they have already asked Moses a greater thing than this, for said. "Show us Allah openly''. Then thunder overtook them for their sins. Then they took the calf after clear signs had come to them. But We pardoned even that and We gave Moses a clear dominance zoom
Amatul Rahman Omar The people of the Scripture ask you to bring down upon them a Book from the heaven. They made a (more wicked and) greater demand than that from Moses, when they said, `Show us Allah openly (face to face);' then a destructive punishment overtook them for their wrongdoing. Then they took the calf (for worship) after clear commandments had come to them, but We pardoned (them) even that. And We gave Moses an undisputed authority. zoom
Dr. Mohammad Tahir-ul-Qadri (O Beloved!) The People of the Book ask you to bring down to them a Book from heaven (completely inscribed in one go). They asked Musa (Moses) for something even greater than that; they said: ‘Show us Allah visibly (in Person).’ So owing to (their) transgression (i.e., this denigrating demand), a thunderbolt seized them. (They died and were later raised to life by Musa’s [Moses’s] prayer.) Then they adopted the calf (as their god) after the clear signs (pointing to the truth) had reached them. Then We overlooked this (sin) as well, and bestowed upon Musa (Moses) a marked dominance over them. zoom
Muhsin Khan & Muhammad al-Hilali The people of the Scripture (Jews) ask you to cause a book to descend upon them from heaven. Indeed they asked Moosa (Moses) for even greater than that, when they said: "Show us Allah in public," but they were struck with thunder clap and lightning for their wickedness. Then they worshipped the calf even after clear proofs, evidences, and signs had come to them. (Even) so We forgave them. And We gave Moosa (Moses) a clear proof of authority. zoom

Non-Muslim and/or Orientalist works
Arthur John Arberry The People of the Book will ask thee to bring down upon them a Book from heaven; and they asked Moses for greater than that, for they said, 'Show us God openly.' And the thunderbolt took them for their evildoing. Then they took to themselves the Calf, after the clear signs had come to them; yet We pardoned them that, and We bestowed upon Moses a clear authority. zoom
Edward Henry Palmer The people of the Book will ask thee to bring down for them a book from heaven; but they asked Moses a greater thing than that, for they said, 'Show us God openly;' but the thunderbolt caught them in their injustice. Then they took the calf, after what had come to them of manifest signs; but we pardoned that, and gave Moses obvious authority. zoom
George Sale They who have received the scriptures will demand of thee, that thou cause a book to descend unto them from heaven: They formerly asked of Moses a greater thing than this; for they said, shew us God visibly. Wherefore a storm of fire from heaven destroyed them, because of their iniquity. Then they took the calf for their God, after that evident proofs of the divine unity had come unto them: But we forgave them that, and gave Moses a manifest power to punish them. zoom
John Medows Rodwell The people of the Book will ask of thee to cause a Book to come down unto them out of Heaven. But a greater thing than this did they ask of Moses! for they said, "Shew us God plainly!" and for this their wickedness did the fire-storm lay hold on them. Then took they the calf as the object of their worship, after that our clear tokens had come to them; but we forgave them this, and conferred on Moses undoubted power. zoom
N J Dawood (2014) The People of the Book ask you to bring down for them a book from heaven. Of Moses they demanded a harder thing than that; they said to him: ‘Show us God openly.‘ And for their wrongdoing the thunderbolt smote them. Then they took up the calf after clear signs had been revealed to them; yet We pardoned them that, and bestowed on Moses clear authority. zoom

New and/or Partial Translations, and works in progress
Sayyid Qutb The people of earlier revelations ask you to have a book sent down to them from heaven. They asked Moses for something even greater than that, when they said: “Make us see God with our own eyes”. The thunderbolt smote them for this their wrongdoing. After that, they took to worshipping the calf, even after clear evidence of the truth had come to them. Yet We pardoned them that, and We gave Moses clear authority. zoom
Ahmed Hulusi The people of the book (the Jews) want you to bring down “a book from the heavens” for them... In truth, they had asked for something even greater from Moses... They had said, “Show us Allah outright,” and the lightning struck them because of their wrongdoing... After clear proofs came to them, they took to worshiping a calf... We forgave even this and gave Moses an evident power. zoom
Sayyed Abbas Sadr-Ameli The People of the Book will ask you to bring down for them a Book from heaven; and indeed they asked Moses for greater than that, for they said: 'Show us Allah vividly '. So the lightning seized them on account of their injustice. Then they took the Calf (for a god) after the clear signs had come to them; Yet We pardoned that; and We gave Moses a clear authority. zoom
Al-muntakhab fi tafsir al-Qur'an al-Karim And insolently do Ahl al-Kitab (the Jews) ask you O Muhammad for a Book that you would cause to descend upon them from heaven! But greater was their irreverence to Mussa (Moses) whom they asked to show them Allah personally so that they perceive Him by sight. There and then did heaven thunder against them and the fearful echoes thundered in their ears in consequence of their blasphemy against Allah. And worse was the reverence and veneration they paid to the calf which they worshipped and adored besides Allah. And this odd disposition, strangely ran in their heads after they had received enough signs to guide them out of want of spiritual and intellectual sight into illumination and enlightenment Yet We pardoned them and remitted the penalty of their serious offence and We conferred on Mussa delegated power and made him stand manifest of authority. zoom
Mir Aneesuddin The owners of the book demand from you that you should bring down a book on them, from the sky. They had demanded of Musa (something) greater than that, they said, "Show us Allah openly." Therefore due to their injustice, the thunder-bolt took (hold of) them. Then they took the calf ( for worship), after clear signs had come to them, but We pardoned(even) that and We gave Musa clear authority. of Musa (something) greater than that, they said, "Show us Allah openly." Therefore due to their injustice, the thunder-bolt took (hold of) them. Then they took the calf ( for worship), after clear signs had come to them, but We pardoned(even) that and We gave Musa clear authority. zoom

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