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بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

Assalamu Alaikum.

So, last week I started translating from the book “Quran Competition”.

Of the five questions asked, 2 were answered correctly by a sister (or is it a brother?), baarakallau feeha.

Insha-Allah, I’ll try to add extra points of benefit for every answer. When I do, I’ll put it under “Note” so that you can differentiate between the author’s comments and my own. If you have any questions or suggestions, please do let me know in the comments area below.

Note: This is not an exact word for word translation. I’m just trying to get the meaning across.

Q1: What is the complete definition of the Quran (i.e. what is the Quran)?

A1: It is the Kalam (Speech) of Allah; miraculous; revealed to the Last Prophet and Messenger,  through Jibreel (alaihissalam) as an intermediary, written in the mushafs, transmitted to us in mutawattir (chains); reciting it is an act of worship; it starts with Surah Al-Fatihah and ends with Surah An-Nas.

Note: Just explaining this definition will take a few hours! This article provides some useful information.

Q2: Regarding whom was the following ayah (verse) revealed:

أَوَمَن كَانَ مَيْتًا فَأَحْيَيْنَاهُ وَجَعَلْنَا لَهُ نُورً‌ا يَمْشِي بِهِ فِي النَّاسِ كَمَن مَّثَلُهُ فِي الظُّلُمَاتِ لَيْسَ بِخَارِ‌جٍ مِّنْهَا ۚ كَذَٰلِكَ زُيِّنَ لِلْكَافِرِ‌ينَ مَا كَانُوا يَعْمَلُونَ

“Is he who was dead (without Faith by ignorance and disbelief) and We gave him life (by knowledge and Faith) and set for him a light (of Belief) whereby he can walk amongst men, like him who is in the darkness (of disbelief, polytheism and hypocrisy) from which he can never come out? Thus it is made fair­seeming to the disbelievers that which they used to do.” [Surah Al-Anaam (6) : 122]

A2: Zaid ibn Aslam said: It was revealed regarding Umar ibn Al-Khattab (radiallahu anhu) and includes everyone who was far from Allah, then was guided by Allah to the Straight Path.

Note: I couldn’t find the reference for Zaid ibn  Aslam’s statement but the opinion that it was revealed regarding Umar (radiallahu anhu) can be found in Tafsir At-Tabari. [Only for Arabic speakers, sorry.]

Question 3: Which of the two is more correct: to say short (aqsar) surah or small (asghar) surah? And why?

A3: The more correct way is to say short surahs because there is nothing “small” in the Quran.

Note: “Short” isn’t demeaning in any way but “small” could be, which is why we shouldn’t be using it for the Book of Allah. Surah Al-Kauthar is a short surah not a small surah. See the difference?

Question 4: How many Prophets are mentioned in the Quran (by name)?

A4: 25 Prophets are mentioned.

Note: 18 of them are mentioned in one place:

وَتِلْكَ حُجَّتُنَا آتَيْنَاهَا إِبْرَ‌اهِيمَ عَلَىٰ قَوْمِهِ ۚ نَرْ‌فَعُ دَرَ‌جَاتٍ مَّن نَّشَاءُ ۗ إِنَّ رَ‌بَّكَ حَكِيمٌ عَلِيمٌ
وَوَهَبْنَا لَهُ إِسْحَاقَ وَيَعْقُوبَ ۚ كُلًّا هَدَيْنَا ۚ وَنُوحًا هَدَيْنَا مِن قَبْلُ ۖ وَمِن ذُرِّ‌يَّتِهِ دَاوُودَ وَسُلَيْمَانَ وَأَيُّوبَ وَيُوسُفَ وَمُوسَىٰ وَهَارُ‌ونَ ۚ وَكَذَٰلِكَ نَجْزِي الْمُحْسِنِينَ
وَزَكَرِ‌يَّا وَيَحْيَىٰ وَعِيسَىٰ وَإِلْيَاسَ ۖ كُلٌّ مِّنَ الصَّالِحِينَ
وَإِسْمَاعِيلَ وَالْيَسَعَ وَيُونُسَ وَلُوطًا ۚ وَكُلًّا فَضَّلْنَا عَلَى الْعَالَمِينَ

“And that was Our Proof which We gave Ibrahim against his people. We raise whom We will in degrees. Certainly your Lord is All­-Wise, All­-Knowing. And We bestowed upon him Ishac and Yaqub, each of them We guided, and before him, We guided Nuh, and among his progeny Dawud, Sulaiman, Ayub, Yusuf, Musa, and Harun. Thus do We reward the good­doers. And Zakariya, and Yahya and Isa and Iliyas, each one of them was of the righteous. And Ismail and Al-Yasa, and Yunus and Lut, and each one of them We preferred above the Alameen (mankind and jinns) (of their times).” [Surah Al-Anaam (6) : 83-86]

The remaining seven are as follows:

إِنَّ اللَّـهَ اصْطَفَىٰ آدَمَ وَنُوحًا وَآلَ إِبْرَ‌اهِيمَ وَآلَ عِمْرَ‌انَ عَلَى الْعَالَمِينَ

“Allah chose Adam, Nuh, the family of Ibrahim and the family of Imran above the Alameen (mankind and jinns) (of their times).” [Surah Aal-Imran (3) : 33]

وَإِلَىٰ عَادٍ أَخَاهُمْ هُودًا

“And to Ad (We sent) their brother Hud.”  [Surah Hud (11) : 50]

وَإِلَىٰ ثَمُودَ أَخَاهُمْ صَالِحًا

“And to Thamud (We sent) their brother Salih.” [Surah Hud (11) : 61]

وَإِلَىٰ مَدْيَنَ أَخَاهُمْ شُعَيْبًا

“And to the Madyan (We sent) their brother Shuaib.” [Surah Hud (11) : 84]

وَإِسْمَاعِيلَ وَإِدْرِ‌يسَ وَذَا الْكِفْلِ ۖ كُلٌّ مِّنَ الصَّابِرِ‌ينَ

“And (remember) Ismail, and Idris and Dhul-Kifl, all were from among the patient ones.” [Surah Al-Anbiya (21) : 85]

مُّحَمَّدٌ رَّ‌سُولُ اللَّـهِ

Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah.” [Surah Al-Fath (48) : 29]

[I got the above ayaat (verses) from Shaikh Umar Al-Ashqar’s book “The Messengers and the Messages”.]

Question 5: In which Surah is the Hoopoe (Hud hud) mentioned?

A5: In Surah An-Naml in the following ayah (verse):

وَتَفَقَّدَ الطَّيْرَ‌ فَقَالَ مَا لِيَ لَا أَرَ‌ى الْهُدْهُدَ أَمْ كَانَ مِنَ الْغَائِبِينَ

“He (Sulaiman) inspected the birds, and said: “What is the matter that I see not the Hud hud (hoopoe)? Or is he among the absentees?” [Surah An-Naml (27) : 20]

Note: This is the story where Sulaiman (alaihissalam) invites the Queen of Saba to Islam (and yes, she accepts).


This week’s set of questions:

Q6: Do the disjointed letters at the beginning of the surahs like: الم ,الر, كهيعص

have a meaning or not?

Q7: Allah says regarding the matter of Haroon and Musa (alaihimissalam):

قَالَ ابْنَ أُمَّ

“He (Harun) said: “O son of my mother!”” [Surah Al-Araaf (7) : 150]

Why did he (Haroon) mention him (Musa) by the name of his (Musa’s) mother and not by the name of his father, when people are only known by the names of their fathers?

Note: What he means is why didn’t Haroon (alaihissalam) say “Son of my father”. Read the full ayah (what I put above is just a part of it) and you’ll understand why Harun (alaihissalam) said this.

Note: No, the answer is NOT that they have different fathers. One of the hadeeth (about Isra wal Meraj, I believe) clearly mention that both are “ibn Imran”.

Q8. Allah says about the matter of Masjid Al-Haram in Makkah:

فَاجْعَلْ أَفْئِدَةً مِّنَ النَّاسِ تَهْوِي إِلَيْهِمْ

“So fill some hearts among men with love towards them.” [Surah Ibrahim (14) :37]

And He did not say “hearts of men”(أَفْئِدَة النَّاس)(rather he said (some) hearts from men) so what is the wisdom behind that?

Q9: What does one say after reciting the following ayah in Surah At-Teen:

أَلَيْسَ اللَّـهُ بِأَحْكَمِ الْحَاكِمِينَ

“Is not Allah the Best of judges?” [Surah At-Tin (95) :8]

Q10: Allah says:

وَلَا يَأْتَلِ أُولُو الْفَضْلِ مِنكُمْ وَالسَّعَةِ أَن يُؤْتُوا أُولِي الْقُرْ‌بَىٰ وَالْمَسَاكِينَ وَالْمُهَاجِرِ‌ينَ فِي سَبِيلِ اللَّـهِ ۖ وَلْيَعْفُوا وَلْيَصْفَحُوا ۗ أَلَا تُحِبُّونَ أَن يَغْفِرَ‌ اللَّـهُ لَكُمْ ۗ وَاللَّـهُ غَفُورٌ‌ رَّ‌حِيمٌ

“And let not those among you who are blessed with graces and wealth swear not to give (any sort of help) to their kinsmen, Al-Masakeen (the poor), and those who left their homes for Allah’s Cause. Let them pardon and forgive. Do you not love that Allah should forgive you? And Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” [Surah An-Nur (24) : 22]

Is there a difference between pardoning( العفو) and forgiving(الصفح), and (if so), what is it?

To be continued…