"He it is Who sends down water (rain) from the sky;
"He it is Who sends down water (rain) from the sky; from it you drink and from it (grows) the vegetation on which you send your cattle to pasture."
An-Nahl (The Bees): 10) Surat
By: Dr. / Zaghloul El-Naggar
This noble Ayah comes at the opening of
An-Nahl (the Bees); a Surah that was revealed in Makkah. It consists of 128 verses. The Surah was given this name because it included the mention of bees. It is said that the origin of the name “Nahl” – the Arabic word for “bee” - comes from the fact that Allah (SWT) has endowed (nahala) these insects with the ability to produce honey; an endowment that distinguishes bees from all other insects. There are more than 750,000 different kinds of insects; each kind, in turn, contains billions. Surat
The Ayahs continue emphasizing the truth of the Inspiration revealed by Allah to His chosen Prophets and Messengers. Allah chose such pious servants for carrying the responsibility of informing the people about the fact that there is only One God Whom they must fear and warning them against the danger of disobedience.
Allah (SWT) included in Surat An-Nahl many miracles of the universe that demonstrate His unique and creative power, as well as His Divinity, Oneness, Comprehensive Knowledge, and Great Wisdom.
The Surah then moves to some scenes of the Day of Judgment. It also refutes the disbelievers' claim that they are destined to disbelief, and emphasizes the fact that every messenger’s mission was simply to inform people clearly of Allah’s message. Allah sent a messenger to every nation to call his people to worship none but Allah; to reject the worship of idols. Some nations believed in this message and others went astray. The Ayahs call upon wise people to travel through the earth and consider what has befallen the disbelievers of previous nations.
The Surah then addresses Prophet Muhammad (Pbuh) about those who disbelieve in resurrection. It assures the believers who are forced to emigrate from their homes in order to escape the injustice that would befall them by tyrants that they will be compensated in this worldly life and will be given a double reward in the Hereafter in return for their perseverance for the sake of defending their religion and adhering to their belief.
The Surah then reminds the seal of Prophets, Muhammad (Pbuh), that the Messengers and Prophets who were sent to previous nations were ordinary human beings-not angels, gods, nor sons of gods as claimed by those who went astray. Like Prophet Muhammad (Pbuh), those Prophets and Messengers were chosen by Allah to receive the Inspiration and inform their people.
The verses then warn the sinners that Allah may cause the earth to swallow them up, or He may inflict them with torture from anywhere, while they are traveling, in order to urge them to think deeply about asking the mercy and benevolence of Allah. The Surah then establishes the fact that everything in the heavens and on the earth-humans, angels, and animals-prostrate down humbly before Allah. "They fear their Lord above them, and they do what they are commanded." (
An-Nahl (The Bees): 50) Surat
Then, the Surah again warns against polytheism and emphasizes the Oneness of Allah over all His creatures. It stresses the fact that all creatures must fear and respect their Creator Who owns whatever exists in the heavens and the earth, Who is the source of the eternal religion, Who is the origin of all blessings for His creatures, and Who relieves their afflictions whenever they seek His help; though some people pray to Allah only in times of distress and return to polytheism as soon as the affliction is removed. The Ayahs warn such people and threaten them of severe punishment.
The Surah blames polytheists for making erroneous judgments without having the right or knowledge to make them. It emphasizes that whoever fabricates and lies will be harshly rebuked and asked about all his deeds on the Day of Judgment. The Surah then blames them, too, for assigning daughters to Allah (SWT) when, on the other hand, they assign for themselves what they prefer and desire without having the right to do so.
At this point, the speech is directed to Prophet Muhammad (Pbuh). Allah tells him what can be translated as, "By Allâh, We indeed sent (Messengers) to the nations before you (O Muhammad Pbuh), but Shaitân (Satan) made their deeds fair-seeming to them. So he (Satan) is their Wali (Helper) today (i.e. in this world), and theirs will be a painful torment. 63. And We have not sent down the Book (the Qur’an) to you (O Muhammad Pbuh), except that you may explain clearly unto them those things in which they differ, and (as) a guidance and a mercy for a folk who believe.64." (
The Surah then blames those who worship idols beside Allah. Such idols do not and cannot possess any provision for themselves from the heavens or the earth. The Surah warns them against putting forward any similitude for Allah (as there is nothing similar to Him, nor does He resemble anything). Only Allah knows how corrupt those who gave such examples are, and they are deluded. The Ayahs contrast the happiness and success of believers against the corruption of polytheists and polytheism. It emphasizes that only Allah knows the future in the heavens and the earth. One matter of the future that only Allah knows is the date of the Day of Judgment which will come suddenly. Truly, Allah is All-knowing, All-Mighty. Allah again addresses His messenger, Prophet Muhammad (Pbuh), saying what can be translated as, "Then, if they turn away, your duty (O Muhammad Pbuh) is only to convey (the Message) in a clear way.” (
The Surah then emphasizes the fact that unbelievers recognize the blessings of Allah but they deny them. Then, it describes their state in the Day of Judgment. All Messengers will witness for their people on that Day. The Prophet Muhammad (Pbuh) will also bear witness for his people and for all those who disbelieved in his message and denied his Prophethood during his lifetime up until the Day of Judgment. Thus, Allah says what can be translated as, "And (remember) the Day when We shall raise up from every nation a witness against them from amongst themselves. And We shall bring you (O Muhammad Pbuh) as a witness against these. And We have sent down to you the Book (the Qur’an) as an exposition of everything, a guidance, a mercy, and glad tidings for those who have submitted themselves (to Allâh as Muslims)." (
An-Nahl (The Bees): 89). Surat
Allah says what can be translated as, "And had Allâh willed, He could have made you (all) one nation, but He sends astray whom He wills and guides whom He wills. But you shall certainly be called to account for what you used to do." (
An-Nahl (The Bees):93). Surat
Allah also says," Whoever works righteousness - whether male or female - while he (or she) is a true believer (of Islâmic Monotheism) verily, to him We will give a good life (in this world with respect, contentment and lawful provision), and We shall pay them certainly a reward in proportion to the best of what they used to do (i.e. Paradise in the Hereafter)." (
The Surah then orders Muslims to seek refuge in Allah (from Satan) before reciting Holy Qur'an. Allah addresses His messenger Prophet Muhammad (Pbuh) saying what can be translated as, "Say (O Muhammad Pbuh) Ruh-ul-Qudus [Jibrîl (Gabriel)] has brought it (the Qur’ân) down from your Lord with truth, that it may make firm and strengthen (the Faith of) those who believe, and as a guidance and glad tidings to those who have submitted (to Allâh as Muslims)." (
The Surah rejects the false claim by some unbelievers that Prophet Muhammad (Pbuh) was taught by another human. Allah says that the tongue of the man they refer to is foreign, while this (the Qur'an) is in a clear Arabic tongue. The Surah totally denounces those who disbelieve in Allah's Ayahs, belying Him or denying His existence, except if one is forced to do so and his heart is assured with faith. But those who open their breasts to disbelief, on them is wrath from Allah. They will be severely punished in the Hereafter.
On the other hand, Allah says what can be translated as, "Then, verily! Your Lord - for those who emigrated after they had been put to trials and thereafter strove hard and fought (for the Cause of Allâh) and were patient, verily, your Lord afterward is, Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful." (
One Ayah gives an example of the town of Makkah, in what can be translated as, "And Allâh puts forward the example of a township (Makkah), that dwelt secure and well-content: its provision coming to it in abundance from every place, but it (its people) denied the Favours of Allâh (with ungratefulness). So Allâh made it taste extreme of hunger (famine) and fear, because of that (evil, i.e. denying Prophet Muhammad Pbuh) which they (its people) used to do." (
At the end of the Surah, the Ayahs mention some prohibited foods, emphasizing that the right of prohibition and permission is confined only to Allah (SWT). Such rights cannot be claimed by any imposter. Those imposters will eventually be losers in the Hereafter because they will have a temporary illusion of happiness in this life but will be punished in the afterlife. An example of those liars are Jews who disobeyed Allah’s orders. Allah forbid them from certain kinds of food as a result of their boundless, wickedness and exceeding the limits of Almighty Allah.
Still, Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful for those who repent and do good deeds. "The Sabbath was only prescribed for those who differed concerning it, and verily, your Lord will judge between them on the Day of Resurrection about that wherein they used to differ.” (
The Surah describes Prophet Ibrahim “Abraham” as a leader (or a nation) who had all the good righteous qualities: he was obedient to Allah, worshipped none but Allah, and was not one of those who were Al-Mushrikûn (polytheists, idolaters, disbelievers in the Oneness of Allah, and those who joined partners with Allah). He was thankful for Allah's Favors. Thus Allah chose him and guided him to a Straight Path (Islamic Monotheism - neither Judaism nor Christianity). Moreover, He ordered Prophet Muhammad (Pbuh) to follow Ibrahim’s religion.
The Surah tells us that Allah ordered the Jews to keep Saturdays sacred as a day of rest and worship, but some of them did not obey His orders, those will be charged by Him on the Day of Judgment.
Tenets of Faith in
1) Belief in Allah, the One who created all and everything, the God and Owner of everything, who has no rivals in His kingdom and no partner in His Sovereignty, and He is not like any of His creatures. Belief in the ultimate power, mercifulness, compassion of Allah; and that He does not tolerate the arrogant, and that He knows whatever we reveal or hide.
2) Belief in the truth of inspiration revealed by Allah (SWT) to His Messengers, whom He carefully chose from all His creatures, sent them to various nations, in various eras, and finally concluded His inspiration through Prophet Muhammad (Pbuh).
The original versions of previous scriptures were exposed to a great deal of distortion, which lead the Christians and Jews to fall into polytheism, believing in paganism and false beliefs. Allah has undertaken the responsibility to fully protect His final message-every word and every letter-until the Day of Judgment with the same language with which it was revealed (the Arabic language).
3) Belief in the mission of every messenger of Allah, which is to carry the message of Allah to the people without affecting their free will to choose and thereby deserve their reward or punishment in the afterlife.
4) Belief in the truth and absoluteness of resurrection.
5) Belief in the truth of reward and punishment.
6) Belief that only Allah has the right to judge, and accordingly He decides what is prohibited and what is not.
7) Belief that Allah conferred on people minds to reason and reflect, free will to choose and direct, and made clear to them the right path that leads to happiness and blessing and the wrong path of evil, and then leaves the choice open for every person.
8) Belief that whatever exists in the world bows down to Allah (SWT), and that all idols alleged and worshipped by disbelievers such as rocks, trees, stars, planets and others are all creatures that cannot create anything, all of which worship Almighty Allah humbly.
9) Belief that Allah owns whatever is in the heavens and the earth, and that He alone has the right religion.
Noble traits encouraged in
1) Calling for the establishment of justice on earth, treating people kindly, keeping promises, and other forms of good manners and refined qualities and rules of conduct based on fear of Allah.
2) Calling for spending money for the sake of Allah, especially on poor relatives.
3) Calling for Hijrah (traveling from an area of sins to an area of good morals) for the sake of Allah.
4) Warning from falling into fitnah (worldly temptations) and from the most dangerous disbelief after having believed in Allah.
5) Completely forbidding polytheism or the worship of anything other than Allah and any abomination or transgression.
6) Reminding of the various blessings of Allah on His worshippers, such as the fact that they can seek refuge with Allah at every disaster and distress and that He will always give them relief.
7) Reminding mankind of the stages of his life starting from the fetus stage through the youth and adolescence, adulthood through old age or senility until death. The Surah also compares those stages to the movement from times of wealth and wellbeing into distress and torment, or vice versa.