Surah al-A`raf (The Elevated Places) 7 : 100

أَوَلَمْ يَهْدِ لِلَّذِينَ يَرِثُونَ ٱلْأَرْضَ مِنۢ بَعْدِ أَهْلِهَآ أَن لَّوْ نَشَآءُ أَصَبْنَٰهُم بِذُنُوبِهِمْ ۚ وَنَطْبَعُ عَلَىٰ قُلُوبِهِمْ فَهُمْ لَا يَسْمَعُونَ

Translations

 
 Muhsin Khan
 Pickthall
 Yusuf Ali
Quran Project
Has it not become clear to those who inherited the earth after its [previous] people that if We willed, We could afflict them for their sins? But We seal over their hearts so they do not hear.

1. Lessons/Guidance/Reflections/Gems

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Explanatory Note

The laws of nature God has set in operation will never fail, and His will is certain to always be done. So what guarantees people’s security against the punishment God may inflict on them for the sins they have committed, in the same way as He punished earlier communities? How can they be safe from having their hearts sealed so that they cannot even listen to divine guidance? For that would ensure that they receive punishment for following the wrong path. The fate of earlier communities and the fact that the laws of nature remain operative should give them sufficient warning to make them fear God and follow His guidance. This would require them to get rid of their sense of false security and to be on their guard. They should benefit by the lessons of earlier communities so that they do not have to suffer the same fate.
 
In giving this warning in the Qur’ān, God does not want people to always live in fear, worrying that He may cause their immediate destruction at any moment of the night or day. Such a constant fear of the unknown, and permanent worry about the future, and such an expectation of destruction may paralyse people, deprive them of their abilities and lead them to a state of despair. They would then stop working and refrain from fulfilling the task of building human life on earth. What God wants from them is that they should always be on the alert, watching their own actions, paying heed to other people’s experience, identifying the elements that shape human history and remain always in touch with God, not allowing prosperity to make them lead an easy, careless life.
 
God promises human beings a life of security, reassurance and prosperity in this world and in the world to come, if they would only submit to His will and fear Him enough to avoid everything that leaves a stain on human life. He invites them to enjoy security under His protection, trusting to His might, rather than their own material power. They should seek what He has in store for His obedient servants, rather than the luxuries of this world.
 
Life has known generations of believers who feared God and never thought themselves immune from His will or trusted to anyone other than Him. Such people had a keen sense of their faith, and because they enjoyed God’s support they felt reassured, able to overcome Satan and his designs. They lived a goodly life, implementing God’s guidance, fearing no human beings, because they feared God alone.
 
This is how we should understand the constant warnings against the overwhelming might of God and His designs that cannot be foiled. We will then realize that such warnings should not lead us to worry and fear, but to be keenly alert. These warnings do not paralyse life but make sure that it does not sink into a state of carelessness and transgression.
 
At the same time, the Qur’ānic method addresses all human situations and stages of development, at the individual and community levels, providing the right treatment to each one of them, at the right time. It administers a dose of security, trust and reassurance that God’s help will be forthcoming whenever they are threatened by hostile forces. At the same time, it provides a sense of keen apprehension that God’s punishment may be forthcoming whenever people yield to worldly forces and temptations. God certainly knows best how His creation responds to all elements and influences.

2. Linguistic Analysis

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Frequency of Root words in this Ayat used in this Surah *


3. Surah Overview

4. Miscellaneous Information

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5. Connected/Related Ayat

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6. Frequency of the word

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7. Period of Revelation

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A study of its contents clearly shows that the period of its revelation is about the same as that of Surah 6: al-An’am (The Grazing Livestock), i.e. the last year of the Prophet's life at Makkah, but it cannot be asserted with certainty which of these two were sent down earlier. The manner of its admonition clearly indicates that it belongs to the same period. [Ref: Mawdudi]

It is considered the longest surah revealed during the Makkan period. Some consider this surah to have been revealed after Surah 38: Sad. [Ref: Tafsir al-Maudheei, Dr. Mustafah Muslim, vol. 3, p. 2]

8. Reasons for Revelation

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9. Relevant Hadith

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10. Wiki Forum

Comments in this section are statements made by general users – these are not necessarily explanations of the Ayah – rather a place to share personal thoughts and stories…

11. Tafsir Zone

 

12. External Links

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