Al-A'raf

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Sura 7 of the Quran
ٱلْأَعْرَاف
Al-A'raf
The Heights
ClassificationMeccan
Other namesThe Purgatory
PositionJuzʼ 8 to 9
Hizb no.16 to 18
No. of Rukus24
No. of verses206
No. of Sajdahs1 (verse 206)

Al-A'raf (Arabic: ٱلْأَعْرَافal-ʾAʿrāf, "The Heights")[1] is the seventh chapter (sūrah) of the Qur'an, with 206 verses (āyāt). Regarding the timing and contextual background of the supposed revelation (Asbāb al-nuzūl), it is a "Meccan surah", which means it is believed to have been revealed in Mecca, instead of Medina. Its final verse, verse 206, requires a sajdah, or prostration.

Contents[edit]

The chapter starts by telling us how Satan made our ancestors Adam and Eve to leave heaven and all of the three came down to earth and from that point Satan became the number one enemy for humanity, and how he refused to obey God and asked him to keep him alive to show him the vulnerability of this new creature the Human being, the Surah then starts by telling us how Satan misled thousands of populations over time and gives us examples of some prophets who suffered in order to gain their lost companions to the right path, cited in this surah:

  • Story of Noah, which begins with the prophet warning his people and then the community rejecting the message and facing a punishment, the Grand Deluge.
  • Story of Hud: Hud lived with his people Aad, Aad were not ignorant of the existence of Allah, nor did they refuse to worship Him. What they did refuse was to worship Allah alone. They worshipped other gods, also, including idols. This is one sin Allah does not forgive. The Prophet Hud said to his people: "He created you, He provides for you and He is the One Who will cause you to die. He gave you wonderful physiques and blessed you in many ways. So believe in Him and do not be blind to His favors, or the same fate that destroyed Noah's people will overtake you."
  • Story of Saleh: Saleh (meaning the good one in Arabic) was sent to an Arab tribe called Thamud, who were reported to be descendants of Noah. They were vain people who took great pride in their fertile farmland and grand architecture. Prophet Saleh tried to call his people to the worship of One God, to Whom they should give thanks for all their bounties. He called upon the rich to stop oppressing the poor, and for an end to all mischief and evil.
  • Story of Shuaib: His people were greedy people who did not believe that Allah existed and who led wicked lives. Most of them were merchandisers and they gave short measure, praised their goods beyond their worth, and hid their defects. They lied to their customers, thereby cheating them. Allah (God) sent his prophet Shu'aib armed with many miracles. Shu'aib preached to them, begging them to be mindful of Allah's favors and warning them of the consequences of their evil ways, but they only mocked him. Shu'aib remained calm as he reminded them of his kinship to them and that what he was doing was not for his personal gain.
  • Story of Moses and Aaron: The pharaoh who ruled Egypt was a tyrant who oppressed the Children of Israel. He used every means to demean and disgrace them. They were kept in bondage and forced to work for him. Under this system the people obeyed and worshiped the pharaoh, and the ruling class carried out his orders, thereby authorizing his tyranny and crazy[according to whom?] whims. Allah (God) sent his prophet Moses to save the Children of Israel from the pharaoh, he gave him great power to face the pharaoh and win over him. He succeeded and saved his people. And as soon as he went to listen to God's orders, they rejected his message even when Aaron was present among them, this made Moses very mad about his brother but later he asked for mercy from the Almighty for him, his brother and those people, Allah accepted.

Then the Surah says that every community or people that will come on earth will think that they are better than those before and thus better the examples cited above, but in fact those who will not believe in God, or got misled by Satan from the right path will have the same punishment, Hell, and people have to pay attention because Satan and his people can see you but you can't.

Exegesis[edit]

Verses 7:80 - 84[edit]

Verses 7:80–84 deal with the story Lot[2] who was send to a city, that, according to the quranic narrative, was of the transgressors. Angels descend to protect Lot and his daughters, and the city is destroyed by a stone rain. Lot's wife perishes as well. Lot was sent to a group of people who had committed unprecedented levels of immorality. The men amongst them approached other men with desire instead of women; and thus they were transgressing the bounds of God. Upon hearing the accusation that Prophet Lot had leveled on them, his people gave no answer but this: they said, "Drive them out of your city: these are indeed men who want to be clean and pure!" (the second part of the statement was probably a form of sarcasm). In the end, Allah saved Prophet Lot and his family except his wife who was amongst the evildoers and Allah punished the people by sending a rain of stones down on them.

Verse 7:157[edit]

Verse 7:157 reveals that prophecies about the coming of Muhammad were present in the Jewish law and Gospel.

Gallery[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Tafsir Ibn Kathir (English): Surah Al A'raf". Quran 4 U. Retrieved 8 December 2019.
  2. ^ The Holy Qur'an: Text, Translation and Commentary, Abdullah Yusuf Ali, Commentary on Surah Araf. Lut is the Lot of the English Bible. His story is biblical, but freed from some shameful features which are a blot on the biblical narrative, (e.g., see Gen. xix. 30-36). He was a nephew of Abraham, and was sent as a Prophet and warner to the people of Sodom and Gomorrah, cities utterly destroyed for their unspeakable sins. They cannot be exactly located, but it may be supposed that they were somewhere in the plain cast of the Dead Sea. The story of their destruction is told in the 19th chapter of Genesis. Two angels in the shape of handsome young men came to Lot in the evening and became his guests by night. The inhabitants of Sodom in their lust for unnatural crime invaded Lot's house but were repulsed. In the morning, the angels warned Lot to escape with his family. "Then the Lord rained upon Sodom and upon Gomorrah brimstone and fire from the Lord out of heaven; and He overthrew those cities, and all the plain, and all the inhabitants of the cities, and that which grew upon the ground. But his wife looked back from behind him, and she became a pillar of salt." (Gen. xix. 24-26). Note that Lot's people are the people to whom he is sent on a mission. He was not one of their own brethren, as was Salih or Shu'aib. But he looked upon his people as his brethren (I. 13), as a man of God always does.

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