Overview - Surah 47: Muhammad (Muhammad )

Surah Introduction

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The Surah talks about the real struggle that will take place between the truth and falsehood.  In this struggle the truth will be victorious and the falsehood and its supporters will be utterly defeated.  The separation will take place between those who believe and those who will deny the truth.


  1. Those who believe in Prophet Muhammad their sins are removed and their condition will improve.  The opponents of the truth will perish.
  2. Good news for the Believers. The Prophet is asked to pray for the Believers.
  3. The weak hearted and the blind are not able to see the truth.
  4. The real success.  Do not be intimidated, stand firm and struggle for the cause of Allah.

This Surah is named after our beloved Messenger, Muhammad. His name is mentioned in the following Ayat وَالَّذِينَ آمَنُوا وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ وَآمَنُوا بِمَا نُزِّلَ عَلَىٰ مُحَمَّدٍ وَهُوَ الْحَقُّ مِن رَّبِّهِمْ ۙ كَفَّرَ عَنْهُمْ سَيِّئَاتِهِمْ وَأَصْلَحَ بَالَهُمْ "And those who believe and do righteous deeds and believe in what has been sent down upon Muhammad - and it is the truth from their Lord - He will remove from them their misdeeds and amend their condition." (47:2)

The Surah is also known as 'Surah al-Qital' [Fighting].

There are 38 Ayat in this Surah.


Total Ayat38
Total Words *539
Root Words *171
Unique Root Words *0
Makki / MadaniMadani
Chronological Order* 95th (according to Ibn Abbas)
Year of Revelation* 15th year of Prophethood (2nd Year Hijri)
Events during/before this Surah*
Change of Qiblah from Jerusalem to Makkah - Battle of Badr, Migration from Makkah to Madinah - Building of Masjid Nabi in Madinah - Treaty with Jews of Madinah - Marriage of Prophet to Aishah, , 2nd Pledge of Aqabah, 1st Pledge of Aqabah, Death of Abu Talib - Death of Khadijah - Stoning at Ta'if - al-Isra wal Mi'raj - Night Journey, Boycott of Banu Hashim Yr 3, Boycott of Banu Hashim Yr 2, Boycott of Banu Hashim Yr 1, 2nd Migration to Abyssinia, Physical beating and torture of some Muslims - 1st Migration of Muslims to Abyssinia, Public Invitation to Islam - Persecution of Muslims; antagonism - ridicule - derision - accusation - abuse and false propaganda., Revelation begins - Private Invitation to Islam , Revelation begins - Private Invitation to Islam , Revelation begins - Private Invitation to Islam
Events during/after still to occur*
Battle of Uhud,,Battle of Ahzab - Expedition of Banu Quraydhah,Treaty of Hudaiybiyah - Letters to Kings and Rulers,,Conquest of Makkah - Battle of Hunain,Hajj led by Abu Bakr - Expedition of Tabuk,Farewell Hajj by Prophet - Death of Prophet - End of Divine Revelation
Names of Prophets Mentioned
Surah Index
Adversity (patience during) , Angels, Cattle, Charity, Charity (niggardliness) , Death, Death (in God’s cause) , Disbelievers, Disbelievers (God’s promise to) , Fighting, Fighting (do not beg for peace) , Fighting (free slaves after fighting ends) , Hell, Honey, Iblis, Jihad, Judgement (Day) , Knowledge, Knowledge (obligation upon man to obtain and impart) , Milk, Muhammad, Qur’an, Religion (is not play and transient delight) , Resurrection (of soul) , Revelation, Revelation (mentioning war) , Sexes (equality of) , Slaves (freeing) (after war is over), Water, Wine

Central Theme

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Theme 1: Repurcussions for turning away from the Dawah [calling] of Prophet Muhammad [saw].

Theme 2: Its theme is to prepare the believers for war and to give them preliminary instructions in this regard. That is why it has also been entitled al-Qital. It deals with the following topics:

At the outset it is said that of the two groups confronting each other at this time, one has refused to accept the Truth and has become an obstruction for others on the way of God, while the other group has accepted the Truth which had been sent down by God to His servant, Muhammad. Now, God’s final decision is that He has rendered fruitless and vain all the works of the former group and set right the condition and affairs of the latter group.

After this, the Muslims have been given the initial war instructions and they have been reassured of God’s help and guidance: they have been given hope for the best rewards on offering sacrifices in the cause of God and they have been assured that their struggle in the cause of the Truth will not go to waste, but they will be abundantly rewarded both in this world and in the Hereafter.

Furthermore, about the disbelievers it has been said that they are deprived of God’s support and guidance: none of their plans will succeed in their conflict with the believers, and they will meet a most evil fate both in this world and in the Hereafter. They thought they had achieved a great success by driving the Prophet of God out of Makkah, but in fact by this they had hastened their own doom.

After this, the discourse turns to the hypocrites, who were posing to be sincere Muslims before the command to fight was sent down, but were confounded when this command actually came down, and began to conspire with the disbelievers in order to save themselves from the hazards of war. They have been plainly warned to the effect that no act and deed is acceptable to God of those who adopt hypocrisy with regard to Him and His Prophet. There, the basic issue against which all those who profess the Faith are being tried is whether one is on the side of the Truth or Falsehood, whether one’s sympathies are with Islam and the Muslims or with disbelief and the disbelievers, whether one keeps one’s own self and interests dearer or the Truth which one professes to believe in and follow. One who fails in this test is not at all a believer; his Prayer and his Fasting and his discharging of the financial obligation (Zakah) deserve no reward from God.

Then the Muslims have been exhorted not to lose heart for being small in numbers and ill equipped as against the great strength of the disbelievers: they should not show weakness by offering peace to them, which might still further embolden them against Islam and the Muslims, but they should come out with trust in God and clash with the mighty forces of disbelief. God is with the Muslims: they alone shall triumph; and the might of disbelief will be humbled and vanquished.

In conclusion, the Muslims have been invited to spend their wealth in the cause of God. Although at that time they were economically very weak, the problem that they confronted was the very survival of Islam and the Muslims. The importance and delicacy of the problem demanded that the Muslims should not only risk their lives for safeguarding themselves and their Faith from the dominance of disbelief and for exalting God’s Religion but should also expend their economic resources as far as possible in the preparations for war. Therefore, they were clearly warned to the effect: Anyone who adopted a stingy attitude at the time, would not, in fact, harm God at all, but would result in his own destruction, for God does not stand in need of help from men. If one group of men neglected in offering sacrifices in the cause of His Religion, God would remove them and bring another group in its place.

Connection of the name of the Surah and its Ayaat

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Allah has not mentioned the name of the Prophet "Muhammad" except 4 times in the Qur'an, with this Surah being one of them. Allah does mention in one more instance, the name 'Ahmad' in Surah as-Saff (61:6) as the Prophet prophecised by Jesus.

Connection between the beginning and the ending of the Surah

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Manuscripts / Inscriptions

Connection of the Surah to the Surah before/after it

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  • Surah Muhammad and Surah al-Fath both have the mention of the name of the Prophet Muhammad (47:2) (48:29).

The Virtues of the Surah

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Special Features of the Surah

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Important key and unique words of the Surah

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Prophet Muhammad (saW) - The name "Muhammad" derives from the root letters H-M-D meaning "praise". Words which are derived from the root H-M-D appear 63 times in the Qur'an. The Prophet Muhammad (saw) lived for 63 years. http://www.quran-wiki.com/ayatRoots.php?q=H

Period of Revelation

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The contents of this Surah testify that it was sent down after the Hijrah at Madinah at the time when the fighting had been enjoined, though active fighting had not yet been undertaken.

Background Reasons for Revelation

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The conditions at the time when this Surah was sent down were such that the Muslims were being made the target of persecution and tyranny in Makkah in particular and in Arabia in general, and life had become miserable for them. Although the Muslims had emigrated to the haven of Madinah from every side, the disbelieving Quraysh were not prepared to leave them alone and let them live in peace even there. Thus, the small settlement of Madinah was hemmed in by the enemy, who was bent upon exterminating it completely. The only alternative left with the Muslims were that either they should surrender to the forces of ignorance, giving up their mission of preaching the true Faith, or even following it in their private lives, or should rise to wage a war at the cost of their lives to settle finally and forever whether Islam would stay in Arabia or the creed of ignorance. On this occasion God showed the Muslims the same way of resolution and will, which is the only way for the true believers. He first permitted them to fight in Surah 22: al-Hajj (The Pilgrimage): 39 and then enjoined fighting in Surah 2: al-Baqarah (The Cow): 190. But at that time everyone knew full well what it meant to wage a war in those conditions. There were only a handful of Muslims in Madinah, who could not muster even a thousand soldiers; yet they were being urged to take up the sword and clash against the pagan forces of the whole of Arabia. Then the kind of the weapons needed to equip its soldiers for war could hardly be afforded by the town in which hundreds of emigrants were still homeless and unsettled even by resort to starving its members at a time when it had been boycotted economically by the Arabs on all sides.

Relevant Hadith

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  • After the previous Surahs threatening the Makkans with punishment, Surah Muhammad is revealed mentioning Battle of Badr which was the first instalment of the punishment. Allah says فَلَمْ يَسِيرُوا فِي الْأَرْضِ فَيَنظُرُوا كَيْفَ كَانَ عَاقِبَةُ الَّذِينَ مِن قَبْلِهِمْ ۚ دَمَّرَ اللَّـهُ عَلَيْهِمْ ۖ وَلِلْكَافِرِينَ أَمْثَالُهَا "Have they not traveled through the land and seen how was the end of those before them? Allah destroyed [everything] over them, and for the disbelievers is something comparable." (47:10)
  • Allah voids the deeds of the disbelievers.
  • The follow Batil [falsehood] (47:3)
  • They hate what was revealed by Allah (47:9)
  • Showing off and hypocrisy (47:30)
  • Cutting of relations is one of the major wrongs and these are cursed by Allah (47:22) (47:23)
  • The heart is where tadabbur [reflection] takes place. (47:24)
  • The people of Jannah know their homes in Jannah like they know their homes in this world. (47:6)
  • In war thoroughly subdue the unbelievers before taking them as prisoners of war.
  • If you help the cause of Allah, Allah will help and protect you.
  • True believers do not follow their own desires in the matter of religion.
  • Allah put the believers to test to know the valiant and the resolute.
  • In the case of war Allah is on the side of the true believers.
  • Do not be miserly if you are asked to give in the cause of Allah.

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Miscellaneous Issues

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