Surah al-Layl – the Night (92)

Asalaam alaikum warahmatulah wabarakatuh

Surah Layl – Miracle Dream Tafseer – Nouman Ali Khan

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[callout font_size=”27px” style=”cherry”]Introduction[/callout]

Relation of this Surah (Layl) to the Previous Surah (Shams)

1 – Similar words but Opposite Sequencing.

In surah Shams, Allah says;

وَالنَّهَارِ إِذَا جَلَّاهَا

wan-nahar idha jal-laha.
And [by] the day when it
brilliantly displays it [the sun]. [Shams 91:3]

(bright splendour) when referring to the Day and yaghsha (covering of) night.

The sequencing in Surah Shams was; Day and then night.

The Opposite Sequencing is in this surah;

وَاللَّيْلِ إِذَا يَغْشَىٰ . وَالنَّهَارِإِذَاتَجَلَّىٰ

By the night when it covers. And [by] the day when it appears [Layl 92:1-2]

Night covering first, and then day with its brightness.

2 –Slight Grammatical Differences:

In Surah Shams, Allah says; 

وَاللَّيْلِ إِذَا يَغْشَاهَا

Wallayli itha yaghsha
And [by] the night when it covers
it[the sun]  [Shams 91:4]

In this surah [Layl], Allah says:

وَاللَّيْلِ إِذَا يَغْشَا

Wallayli itha yaghsha

And [by] the night when it covers.
[Layl 90:1]

The ayah in surah Layl has no; هَا Ha[meaning‘Her/it’] at the end. So the ayah means; –  The night as it covers. Covers what?

We see the previous surah Shams and realise that the night covers the Sun.

Why is it not mentioned? Because it creates a question.

Allah is hinting at us to recite and understand the Surah before surah al-Layl, which is surah ash-Shams to answer our question.

3 –Surah Shams explains Surah Layl

In Surah Shams:

وَالنَّهَارِ إِذَا جَلَّاهَا

wan-nahar idha jal-laha.
And [by] the day when it
brilliantly displays it [the sun]. [Shams 91:3]

In this Surah Layl;


And [by] the day when it appears brilliant [Layl 92:2]

We find out – through Surah Shams – that it is the sun which has made the day brilliant.

One surah is forcing you to read the other.

4 –
Differences in Tenses

The Night covering up (yaghsha) is present tense.

When Allah spoke about the Day – He spoke it as past tense. (jal-laha and tajal-la).

Because past tense signifies a certainty. Whereas present tense signifies partiality or uncompleteness [because the present has not fully completed itself – due to it being partly in the past and partly in the future – because the present time is always changing].

So the Layl [Night] is mentioned in the present tense – because even when the night/layl has covered (yaghsha) the day, there are remnants of the day which have not been coveredi.e. the moonwhich reflects its light off the sun – still allows us to see during the night. So the night covering is not a complete covering.

Compare this to the day – when all traces of night covering have gone.

This is why the covering of the Night is in the present tense (showing uncompleteness because it is not complete darkness).

This is why the brilliance of the Day is in the past tense (showing it is complete with no traces of darkness).

When day manifests – everything is brightened immediately, whereas night slowly and gradually covers [from ‘Asr to Maghrib to Isha].

5 –
Similarities between the Sky/Earthand Male/Female;

وَالسَّمَاءِوَمَابَنَاهَا. وَالْأَرْضِوَمَاطَحَاهَا   .

And [by] the sky and He who constructed it. And [by] the earth and He who spread it. [Shams 91: 5-6]

In this surah, Allah says;

وَمَا خَلَقَ الذَّكَرَ وَالْأُنثَىٰ

And by what Created the male and female. [al Layl 92:3]

The sky and Earth are different in their characteristics – but they work together to produce vegetation, fruits and plants of benefit – for life to continue.

Similarly, the male and female are different in their characteristics – but they work together to produce children – for life to continue.


The sky sends down water, which penetrates through the Earth and impregnates it.

The liquid water then penetrates the seed – giving it life so it grows gradually, and finally the seed is born – coming out of the mother Earth. This newborn plant then continues to grow healthily until it reaches its peak age. This plant then either benefits humanity, or it does not.

Its seeds spread for future generations to be born.

Then as time passes – it gradually withers away, becomes wrinkly, and dies.

Now Replace the wordPlant with Human in the above Paragraph. And replace the word Sky with father, and Earth with Mother.

6 –Surah Shams is Specific in Wording, Surah Layl is more General

Allah used the words; banaaha (made it) [the skies], and tahaha (spread it out) [the Earth] etc. to show what He has made.

In this surah, ayah 3; He says – وَمَا خَلَقَ الذَّكَرَ وَالْأُنثَىٰ – wa ma Khalaqa adh-dhakara wal untha – and what has Created the male and female.

The word Khalaqa (created) is comprehensive to all the different descriptions of creation mentioned in the previous surah.

7 –Switching from 3rd person [in surah Shams] – to 2nd person [in surah Layl]

In surah Shams, Allah told us how previous nations rebelled and were punished. [This was in the 3rd person narrative i.e. them, he etc.]

In this surah [al Layl] – Allah speaks in the 2nd person (andhartuKum – I warn YOU). The general warning – of the previous nations’ destruction –  is really a specific warning to YOU.

8 – The Relation of the Nafs in both Surahs’

In Surah Shams, Allah says;



And [by] the soul and He who proportioned it.

And inspired it [with discernment of] its wickedness and its righteousness, [Shams 91: 7-8]

We humans have been inspired by Allah to know the 2 ways of; Fujoor (clear rebellion) or the best Taqwa (God consciessness).= fitrah [the natural disposition]. (explained more in Tafseer surah ash-shams).

In this surah Layl – He tells us that although we have been inspired to know the good, certain humans still willingly follow the bad path. While others will follow the good path while knowing the evil path.

9 –The Inner State (in surah Shams) of the Nafs, and the Outer State (surah Layl)

Surah Shams
: Allah told us what goes INSIDE the Nafs (cleansing [zak-kaa] or corrupting [khaaba] the nafs).

Surah al Layl
: OUTER state of the Nafs is shown in this surah – Actions إِنَّ سَعْيَكُمْلَشَتَّىٰ –  inna Sa’Yakum la shat-ta [surely your Strivings are different] [Layl 92:4].

10 This surah will explain how someone can purify or corrupt their Nafs

Surah Shams


He has achieved success, who purifies it. [Shams 91:9]


And he has failed who instills it [with corruption]. [Shams 91:10]

Surah Layl; how do you attain that success/failure is mentioned in this surah;-


As for he who gives and fears Allah. And believes in the best [reward], [Layl 92:5-6]

وَأَمَّامَنبَخِلَوَاسْتَغْنَىٰ. وَكَذَّبَبِالْحُسْنَىٰ

But as for he who withholds and considers himself free of need. And denies the best [reward],

[callout font_size=”27px” style=”cherry”]Themes[/callout]
Themes in this Surah:

1 – The Two Diseases;

Surah Shams, the problem was; Tughyan طَغْوَاRebellion of the people of Thamood.

In this surah Layl –  the disease is Istaghna اسْتَغْنَىٰ (thinking he is ‘free of need‘ from everyone [including Allah].)

Because when people have alot of power and wealth, they think they are not in need of Allah.

Imagine; if you are given a pay cheque by your boss, you will stay humble and obedient to him.
Now if you suddenly win 1 million dollars, you will probably disobey your boss and rebel against him – the source of this rebellion was

2 Theme of Wealth

The theme has become wealth in this surah because of;

– Istaghna اسْتَغْنَىٰ (thinking one is free of need [due to having alot of wealth] [Layl 92:8]

وَمَا يُغْنِي عَنْهُ مَالُهُ إِذَا تَرَدَّىٰ  – His wealth will not benefit him, when he throws himself in the fire; [Layl 92:11]

–  الَّذِي يُؤْتِي مَالَهُ يَتَزَكَّىٰ – He gives wealth to purify himself [Layl 92:18]

Since wealth has become imbedded in the mind/psyche of the people to represent Power.

3 – Defeating the ‘Self-Righteous’ & ‘Self-Sufficiency’ Attitude

There are people who believe, but gradually get the attitude that they think they are guided because they do good deeds.

To them, Allah says;

إِنَّعَلَيْنَالَلْهُدَىٰin-na ‘alayna lal hudasurely guidance is Ours (to give). (Layl 92:12)

So Allah is replying to such a personality – that only Allah can guide the people, and anyone who thinks that they are ‘self-righteous’ or that they are guaranteed Allah’s safety in this life or the next – then they should know that guidance is only with Allah, who guides and misguides whom He wills.

You are only going to get His guidance if you ask for it.
If you don’t ask for it – you will not get it.

You cannot gain guidance by your deeds alone, you will always have to be in a humble state infront of Allah and beg Him to get it.

This is why we always ask Allah to ‘guide us to the straight path’ in surah al Fatiha in our Salaah (prayer/salawat).

To those with arrogant ‘Self-Sufficiency‘ attitude, Allah replies to them;

وَإِنَّلَنَالَلْآخِرَةَوَالْأُولَىٰ– to Us belongs this life and the next (Layl 92:13)

So Allah is telling the rejectors that this life and the next life belong to Him, so He is in charge – not you. Since He owns, so He is the Real One in Power. Not you.

4 –
Lying against the Miracle

Surah Shams; فَكَذَّبُوهُفَعَقَرُوهَافَدَمْدَمَعَلَيْهِمْرَبُّهُمبِذَنبِهِمْفَسَوَّاهَا–  (they lied (against the message) and killed the [miracle] she camel). [Shams 91:14]

Surah Layl
:الَّذِيكَذَّبَوَتَوَلَّىٰ– They lied against the message and turned away (from the Qur’an [miracle]). [Layl 92:16]

5 –
Opposing the Commands of the Message

– In Surah Shams [92:13] – the people were told by Prophet Thamood to stay away from the miracle camel – but they approached it instead and killed it.


And the messenger of Allah [Salih] said to them, “[Do not harm] the she-camel of Allah or [prevent her from] her drink.” [Shams 92:13]

In this Surah Layl – the people are told to come close to the miracle Qur’an but they are turning away from it and distancing.

الَّذِيكَذَّبَوَتَوَلَّىٰ– They lied against the message and turned away (from the Qur’an [miracle]). [Layl 92:16]

6 – A Warning!

In Surah Shams;

Allah says in the previous surah that the Messenger (Salih) said;


And the messenger of Allah [Salih] said to them, “[Do not harm] the she-camel of Allah or [prevent her from] her drink.” [Shams 92:13]

This was a warning – from a Messenger –  not to kill the miracle camel because it would bring their destruction.

In this surah Layl; Allah says;


So I have warned you of a Fire which is blazing. [Layl 92:14]

Allah is giving a powerful warning, a warning which is more powerful than the words of a Messenger. The threatening warning is a Threat from Allah Himself!

7 – Ashqa – the most Wretched!

In Surah Shams, the Ashqa is mentioned;


When the most wretched of them was sent forth [to kill the she miracle camel]. [Shams 91:!2]

This surah Layl tells us what happens to the Ashqa.

No-one will throw themselves in the blazing fire except the Ashqa.
(Layl 92:15)

Surah Shams told us the punishment of the ashqa in this life (damdama alayhim rabuhum – their crushing destruction). [Shams 91:14]

Surah Layl
tells their punishment in this life, and the next punishment is in the next life (mentioned of the crackling fire). [Layl 92:14]

8 –

Surah Shamsوَلَا يَخَافُ عُقْبَاهَا – He does not fear the consequences (of punishing the bad people). [Shams 91:15]

In Layl 92:21وَلَسَوْفَيَرْضَىٰ–  He mentions the consequences of saving His believing slaves – so they are well pleased with Him (wa la sawfa yardda).

Limited punishment and unlimited reward.

9 –
Allah will make the Path – of Good or Evil –  Easy for him

– Before these two Surahs’ came, in surah Balad – the going up of a mountain (‘aqabah) – this path is difficult. Allah is telling us that He will make the high path of good easy for him.

The one who takes the wrong way – Allah will make the most difficult of things (of evil) – easy for him.

(This will be explained further in this tafsir of surah
Layl [92:] 6-10).

Through this imagery – Allah showsthe righteous are elevating in ranks (by climbing the steep path of good).

wretched/destroyed are going lower and lower (thumma radadna hu asfala as-safileen – surah balad).

According to the worldly perspective – the more you waste in wealth, the more your respect in society grows.

Yet what kind of words is he being described with?

– Das-saha
دَسَّاهَا (put in the dust)
– Tarad-da 
تَرَدَّىٰ(falling into a ditch/cliff)

he is lowering himself while thinking he is honoring himself.

However, according to Allah’s perspective – giving in charity raises your nobility and rank in the life to come. It is like you are rising higher and higher up the steep path – getting closer and closer to Allah.

إِلَّا ابْتِغَاءَ وَجْهِ رَبِّهِ الْأَعْلَىٰ

Except he seeks the face of his Lord the MOST HIGH. (Layl 92:8)

So he is getting closer and closer up the steep path towards his Lord the Most High (A’la).

The ones who put themselves down for the sake of Allah – Allah honors them and raises them in ranks.

The ones who try to raise themselves through evil – Allah humiliates them and lowers them more and more.

[callout font_size=”27px” style=”cherry”]Layout & Structure of Surah[/callout]

The LAYOUT and STRUCTURE of the Surah:

Passage 1:
The surah begins with aQsaam (Oaths);

– Allah is making us reflect on these Oaths.
– These Oaths will have a Jawab al Qasam (Response to the oath), which is related to these Oaths.
– The Jawab al Qasam is usually the Central message within the Surah. In this surah, the Central Message is in Ayah 4 – Inna sa’yakum la shatta – surely your efforts are diverse).

Passage 2:
The following aayaat after this ayah (4) describe these efforts in detail. (from ayah 5-11)

Passage 3:
After this, Allah tells His Role in all of this. (ayah 12-13)
Meaning these 2 groups of people are going in opposite directions, and Allah is the true Owner. He is able to reward and punishment, not just in the next life, but this life too.
So none should feel secure from Allah.

Part 4:

The Warning and Good News: (ayah: 14-21)

I am warning you of a fire, none will enter it except the most wretched.

The worst will go in it.

So Allah is telling that;
1- I am warning you,
2 – none will enter it except the wretched.

(ayah 14-15)

So maybe Allah is giving you a warning because you are the most wretched and you just don’t know it?
(you better not become one of them, otherwise you will be in that fire – that’s what Allah is implying through this ayah).

(Ayah 17-18) – will be pushed FAR away from hell.
tajneeb (taf’eel/hyperbolised) – push extremely FAR away.
janaba – push away

wa sayujan-nabbahu al attqa –
those who guarded against evil and had fear of Allah – they will be pushed FAR AWAY from hell.

Compare this to the most wretched (ashqa) who will throw themselves into hellfire.

When the people of hell havn’t even entered hell, they have just seen it – and they will yad’u Thuboora (call upon others and say; destroy me!). So being pushed far away from hell is such a big blessing.

How will they be pushed away from hell?
Ayah 18. He who spends his wealth for purification.

So we see that Wealth is a main theme in this surah.

The previous Surah was about Allah telling us to purify ourselves. Allah in this surah is telling us that our purification is related to how we deal with our wealth (will it be used for Allah’s sake or not?)

DISCLAIMER: There is nothing wrong with owning wealth, so long as you do not love it in your heart. (wa innahu li hubbi khayri la shadeed – surely he loves wealth with a strong love.- surah ‘aadiyat) (maala wa ‘addada – he gathers wealth and counts it – surah humazah).

sa’yakum la shatta (ayah 4): –

Sa’ee – to rushingly make an effort. Either you want to get wealthy in this world, or you want to get wealthy in the next. You can be wealthy in both – if you are sincere to Allah, and you are striving for the next life more.

It’s only if you prefer this life over the next life that you will become of the ashqa (wretched).

[callout font_size=”27px” style=”cherry”]Ayah 1:[/callout]

Ayah 1:

وَاللَّيْلِ إِذَا يَغْشَىٰ

layli idhayaghsha

I swear by the night as it covers up.

Allah does not mention what it covers up.

A strong Theme in this surah will also be that Objects are NOT mentioned in this surah [as if they are covered].
You are expected to find the missing words through your knowledge of previous surahs’ of Qur’an.

Allah forces you to think.


ash-Shawkani: it covers with its darkness everything it covers of the Earth.
It also refers to the darkness of Kufr (disbelief). And when Allah mentions the Day – He is implying the Light of the Day (Revelation) which brightens the darkness (of disbelief) which covered everything before.

[callout font_size=”27px” style=”cherry”]Ayah 2:[/callout]

Ayah 2:

وَالنَّهَارِ إِذَا تَجَلَّىٰ

nahari idha tajalla

By the Day as it appears in glory;

The removal of darkness is sudden when the Daylight comes, in comparison to the night which approaches and covers gradually.

Even abit of light in the morning suddenly removes the darkness. Whereas darkness approaches gradually (from ‘Asr time till Maghrib [sunset], and even after that).

The same way the Revelation of guidance quickly removes the darkness of misguidance. Whereas the darkness of misguidance gradually occurs through sins, innovations, and gradually acts of oppression and disbelief.

The nation of the Arabs were in polytheism for many hundreds of years. Then within 23years, the Arabs as a nation had converted to Islam as a whole. And 23 years is nothing in the history of a nation.
So we see that the light of guidance removed the darkness of polytheism within an extremely short period of time.

[callout font_size=”27px” style=”cherry”]Ayah 3:[/callout]
Ayah 3:

وَمَا خَلَقَ الذَّكَرَ وَالْأُنثَىٰ

ma khalaqa az-zakara wal-ontha

And [by] What created the male and female,

ma –

ma al mawsoolah – (What) – What One who could create the male and female.
ma as masdariyyah – What – how incredible [amazement] and awe inspiring is the creation of the male and female.

ذَّكَرَ وَالْأُنثَىٰ dhakara wal untha – does not just refer to man and woman. It refers to anything which is created in the male and female. I.e. Animals, plants, humans, etc.

Allah opened up the scope of male and female, just as He left the scope for yaghsha (covering) and tajal-la (brightness) open.

Ameen Ahsan Islahi

These pairs have a profound lesson;

This pairing  – وَمِن كُلِّ شَيْءٍ خَلَقْنَا زَوْجَيْنِ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَذَكَّرُونَ (We created everything in pairs so perhaps you may remember – Dhariyat 51:49).

Night would be destruction by itself.


Say, “Have you considered: if Allah should make for you the night continuous until the Day of Resurrection, what deity other than Allah could bring you light? Then will you not hear?” [Qasas 28:71]

What if the day never went? What if there were only males on the Earth without females? WHat if there were only females without males?

We see that everything on Earth is made in pairs (male/female, big/small etc.)
Life can’t continue without the other opposite. Who causes this balance?

When a man gets angry, a woman can calm him down in a way which other men can’t. A woman can relax in a unique way only through a male who understands her and cares for her.

Everything requires an opposite
, a pair – so that a perfect balance can be achieved.

This is why Allah says;

And truly belongs to Us the last (life) and the first (life). (ayah 13)

So the hereafter becomes a necessary pair to this life.
This causes a balance, just like the night causes a balance to the day, like the female causes a balance to the male.

Everything is incomplete without a pair. What will complete this world is the next one.

[callout font_size=”27px” style=”cherry”]Ayah 4:[/callout]

Ayah 4:

إِنَّ سَعْيَكُمْ لَشَتَّىٰ

saAAyakum la shatta

no doubt – your efforts are divided/Shatta.

This surah is in the 2nd person – You. This focuses that the stories of the nations before you mentioned in the previous surah (Shams) were lessons for You to learn from.

kum – Your (plural) – can refer to Muslims doing different forms of effort.
But another stronger opinion is that it refers to mankind.

sa’ee – walking / pacing fast.

When something important is concerning you, you are walking fast (doing Sa’ee)

– all over the place. Divided.

Muslims are making efforts to establish the Religion.
The disbelievers are trying to oppose the Religion of Allah.

It can also refer to worldly perspectives;
We have different racing/strivings – to different motives. Some people do one job, another does another different type/path job.

Shatta – shattered.
(mankind was originally upon one way [the religion of their father Adam – Islam (submission to Allah/God)], and then they were shattered into pieces – different paths).

mukhtalif – two different things from the start.

Our efforts are part of a whole – larger plan. People might offend the believers, the Muslims are trying to spread the religion.
But all this part of Allah’s big plan of revealing the different aayaat of the Qur’an; including Allah encouraging patience to the believers, giving warnings to the disbelievers, and giving commands etc.

All this was part of Allah’s One big plan. So although the people are divided (shatta) in their motives and ideologies, they are all under the One main plan of Allah.

Shatta – plural of shateet – broken and dispersed.

: Alaf-fa ألف(ta/leef) = to unite shattered up pieces into 1 whole.

But after all this dividing (shatta) of mankind, and their different paths;

Which side are you on?

shatta – originally together and then broken apart.

Allah says;


a special miraculous sign for them is the night. We snatch/pull the day out of it. So Allah is describing Day being pulled/broken away from night. [Yasin 36:37]

Just like the word Shatta (breaking up/shattering.)

Ayah [Surah Layl 90]:3 – wa ma khalaqa adh-dhakara wal untha (and by what created the male and female).

Where did the first human female (Hawwa, the wife of Adam) come from?

She was broken away from Adam.

The word shatta is so powerful and fitting in this ayah, and context of the surah.

Our situation and parallel of the Muslim struggle can be related to through all nature. So instead of us being saddened and feeling hopeless, we should feel stronger in our resolve by reflecting on the creation.

[callout font_size=”27px” style=”cherry”]Ayah 5:[/callout]

Ayah 5:

فَأَمَّا مَنْ أَعْطَىٰ وَاتَّقَىٰ

Faamma man

As for he who gives andfears Allah

fa ammaa man – then as for the one – who gave [a’tta] and warded evil from himself (or God consciouss).

a’ttaa – give in much abundance.

aataa – give

Allah said a’ttaa in surah al Kawthar; surely We have given (a’ttaa) you abundance (kawthar).

Words used for Giving in the Qur’an include
nahalla, hadiyya, wahabba, dafa’a, rafada, athaaba, diyya, ada’a.

But this type of giving is to give something in response to something, i.e. You might see something and you like it – as a reaction, you give them. Giving something as a favour, as a bonus, far beyond what was expected (= i’ttaa).

Gave who? In previous surahs’ – we learn who should be given to (see and quote surah Balad 90: 13-17).

wat-taqqaa – taqqa – save yourself from harm and the consequences of harm.

Allah also uses this word to guard against;

– fataqqun-naar فَاتَّقُوا النَّارَ  (so guard yourself against the fire [Baqarah 2:24]),

وَاتَّقُوا يَوْمًا لَّا تَجْزِي نَفْسٌ عَن نَّفْسٍ شَيْئًا وَلَا يُقْبَلُ مِنْهَا شَفَاعَةٌ وَلَا يُؤْخَذُ مِنْهَا عَدْلٌ وَلَا هُمْ يُنصَرُونَ – wataqqun-yawman tajizu nafsan ‘an nafsin shay’a.. (fear the Day when every person will be recompensed for what it did… [Baqarah 2:248])

at-taqqaa – taqwa – guarding yourself against what you fear (khawf).

khawf – fear. I.e. You hear a loud sound, and you’re scared.

But to hide when scared is an act of Taqwa, because you Guarded yourself.

So taqwa is an action of guarding due to fear of being harmed.

Taqwa – from Wiqaayah – literally, to protect yourself /or someone.

This ayah states;

He gave (a’ttaa) and then he had fear to protect himself (wattaqaa).

The one who gives – usually feels confident about himself and his charity.
But in this ayah, Allah is telling us that this person has fear even after the giving.

There is a mistake which happens in alot of deviant religions, and also some Muslims are bringing this into Islam.
These people are involved in earning haraam (unlawful) money, so they give ALOT of money in charity to recompense for this evil, but they do not stop their unlawful earnings.

Allah wants us to give, and to fear Him through Taqwa (action based fear – to Guard yourself against His punishment).

You have to have both (giving and fear).

Some people have Taqwa but they do not give in charity.

You have to have both (fear and giving).

al Islaahi
: This is not the only place in the Qur’an where this sequence of giving and fear is mentioned.

In surah Insan/Dahr, Allah says;



(We feed you for Allah’s face (wajh), we do not want any reward or thanks, we fear from our Master a day which will make the faces frown [al Insan 76:9-10]

Their giving for Allah’s face is mentioned there, and also in this surah (ayah 19-20) when associated with giving.

Ayah 20 of this surah
has the mention of: Wajh – face.

The brothers of Yusuf (your father’s face will turn to you –يَخْلُلَكُمْوَجْهُأَبِيكُمْ[Surah Yusuf 12:9]) – your father will look at you with love and affection (when Yusuf is gone).

This is the type of attention these givers in charity want from Allah.
The attention you love when someone famous recognises you and is pleased with you.

ash-Shawkani: He kept exhausting his wealth for good causes. Diversifying all your money for all types of different good causes.

Some people do this in this life, they invest their money in different projects in businesses which aren’t going well – hoping that the businesses will grow – and they will get reward and profits out of it.

Now imagine such a person did this for the sake of Allah – fearing Him, and invested his money in all types of good; in helping the orphan, the oppressed, the Muslim prisoner etc. The fruits of all this would amaze him on Judgment Day.

Assaam ar-Ra’i:

He gave and he was afraid (a’ttaa wat-taqqaa) means;

He gave because he was afraid of being cheap and miserly in the sight of Allah.

Brother Nouman’s teacher:

Is it really our money that we are giving? Or did Allah give it to us in the first place?

Try getting a sweet, and see if your children ask for it. When you give it them – ask for it back. The child won’t give it back, he’ll say “it’s mine!”

This is exactly how we act as humans with Allah. We forget that He is the One who gave it us, so we are greedy like that child, claiming it belongs to us alone.


Who is it that would loan Allah a goodly loan so He may multiply it for him many times over?
And it is Allah who withholds and grants abundance, and to Him you will be returned. [al Baqarah 2;245]

Money is the essential thing which makes you think you are in charge. You think you own this money.
This is the attitude Allah is exposing.

A’ttaa wat-taqqaa – he gave and he feared (that he might get an attitude that this is his money only).

– You only give Alot of money in a Sure Deal. If you are in doubt about a reward – you don’t invest alot of money into it.
So the stronger you are in your trust in Allah – the more you give. And the more you give – the stronger your Eman (belief) increases.

The weaker your trust in Allah, the less you give.

If you are guaranteed a reward through a certain investment – don’t you invest ALOT of your money?

Why? Because its a sure deal.

This person gives alot in charity because he fears he might get a personality of being greedy and stingy/miserly.

A’tta أعطى – hyperbolised (maximum form – of giving).

You would imagine that sequence would be; at-taqqaa wa a’tta (he feared, so he gave). But it is the opposite to show the above amazing explanations of the emotions of this humanitarian giver.

Allah mentions the CONCLUSION 1st and the ROOT 2nd.This Theme is repeated throughout the surah.

Allah mentions this life and the next life in ayah 13.
Which should be mentioned first really?

And surely to Us belong the last (life) and the first (life – this world).

Allah mentioned the last life of the hereafter first, then the life of this world.

This is part of the remarkable sequencing of the Surah. You see the Fruit (results), and then you see its Root which caused such a result.

[callout font_size=”27px” style=”cherry”]Ayah 6:[/callout]
Ayah 6:

وَصَدَّقَ بِالْحُسْنَىٰ
wa sad-daqa bi al husna

and he confirmed the truth in the ultimate good.

masculine words
in this form; afdal, akbar, etc.

feminine form; kubra, husna etc.

This form implies; Ultimate, best possible.

He confirmed the truth in the Best/ultimate what? Allah does not say. But he is implying;

He confirmed the truth In the best; guidance, way of life, religion, in obedience to Allah and His Messenger, Paradise, etc.

Allah has summarised all the religion in 1 word; al Husna (the Ultimate Good).

The salaf would comment on al Husna [Ultimate Good] and say it is;

– the Kalimataan (La illaha illAllah Muhammadun Rasool Allah – there is no god but Allah and Muhammad is His Messenger (sal Allah alayhi wasalam))

Paradise is the ultimate good.

– the following of the Messenger.

giving to the poor.

Allah wants you to think, so He misses words for you to fill in the gaps.

Allah is teaching us; A person who knows something is good, but he doesn’t do it.

sad-daqatasdeeq – to know something is good and to do it.

The fundamental theme in this Surah is action (sa’yakum).

The topics which have been addressed in this surah (chronologically) are;

– Give Wealth in charity
– Taqwa
– Confirming the ultimate good.

If we reverse these – this is how real life occurs; you confirm the ultimate good, you gain taqwa, and then you give wealth.

Taqwa is in your heart and actions.
Giving is in action.

What is the central theme in this surah? Action.

A’tta أعطى , wat-taqqaa, sad-daqa.

A’tta [Giving] is the closest to action
, thentaqwa is [safeguarding against evil], and thensad-daqa (confirming the truth) is furthest since it is a belief.

So the closest word to sa’yakum (your fast pacing/walking) is an action; A’tta, then taqwa which is partly action, and then sad-daqqa which is a belief in the heart.

This is part of the Balaghah (eloquence) of the Qur’an style.

To place the word which is close to the main theme closest to it. And the least consistent word is most distance from it.

Faaddil Hassaan ar-Ra’i:

The nature of an individual to the nature of society.

Nature of the individual
– he first confirms (sad-daqa) the truth.
– he increases in taqwa (fears and guards against evil)
– he gives (a’tta) alot in charity.

Nature of Society:

– you have to contribute back to society by giving (a’tta).
– abide by the law in that society (afraid of breaking the law is taqwa)
– the progression of a society to the best level of health and morality is through confirming (sad-daqa) the Ultimate good (husna of Islam).

ash-Shawkani (in his tafseer Fath al Qadeer):
He confirms the truth means;.

He gave the right of Allah which he recognised was binding upon him.
Allah gives you wealth – so you recognise that you should spend it in His cause.

Hasan bin Ali: He confirmed the Ultimate good of La illaha illAllah.

Mujahid: the Jannah (Paradise).

Zayd bin Aslam: Confirmed the good in Salah, Zakah etc. All that is good of the religion and its rituals.
The rights of Allah upon you.

The first words of this ayah 5 were;

amma man (as for the one) – If he does this [gives in charity and fears, and confirms the truth]..

This is called kalimat ash-Shart (a conditional statement).

If he does this (all what was mentioned above)…

[callout font_size=”27px” style=”cherry”]Ayah 7:[/callout]
Ayah 7:

فَسَنُيَسِّرُهُ لِلْيُسْرَىٰ

sanu yassiruhu lilyusra

We will soon make smooth for him the path of ease (goodness).

We will make ease for him, .

Until He (Allah) makes something easy – it is not easy.

Yusra is the feminine form of aysar = the easiest =
I will make the easiest, really easy for him.

Allah is giving a gift, He makes doing good deeds easy for him.

So Allah makes it hard for him to do evil deeds, evil sins are hard for him to do.
But doing good deeds, Allah has made that easy for him due to him showing his sincerety to Allah (from his previously mentioned actions).

Most of us – when we do good things, its hard. Bad things to do are easy.

Allah will make your attitude for the better so you enjoy and find it easier to do good deeds.

yaseer – a task done without difficulty.

حين  “huwa alayya hayyin” – a task which is beneath your skillset. Way too easy.

Allah says to His Messenger in another ayah in the Qur’an;

وَنُيَسِّرُكَ لِلْيُسْرَىٰ wa nuyasiruka lil yusra – i will make the easiest thing easy for you (O Muhammad).

[al A’la 87:6]

Allah will make the easy easy for His Messenger.

He says about the character being discussed earlier;

فَسَنُيَسِّرُهُ لِلْيُسْرَىٰfaSa nu yasiruka lil yusra (then SOON We will make easy for him the way of ease).

The ‘Sa‘ as a prefic means ‘Soon’.

The difference is that Allah said to His Messenger; I will make easy for you.

He said
to the righteous character being discussed earlier; SOONI will make easy for you.

He did not say this to His Messenger. Because His Messenger is content, he is not at unrest with his Lord.

The people who are not Messengers’ are not tranquil, they are sometimes even in a state of sin (which removes your feeling of tranquility with Allah). But if they persist in doing good – Allah will SOON make the path of ease easy for them.

– The Arabs would talk about the horse which is hard to ride without a saddle, seat and the reins, etc.
But when the horse had all this riding uniform placed upon it, they would describe it as;

Yasar-ra al faras يسر الفرس  – an easy to ride horse.

This is where the word yas-sar originally came from.

So Allah is saying that if you do these good acts of giving ALOT (A’tta) in charity, having taqwa/fear/guarding against evil, and you confirm (sad-daqa) the good – it is like Allah has placed you upon a comfortable riding horse, and He will make the riding journey of ease – easy for you.

Allah will make all the arrangements of good easy for you. All the doors of good will be open for you.

وَيَرْزُقْهُ مِنْ حَيْثُ لَا يَحْتَسِبُ ۚ وَمَن يَتَوَكَّلْ عَلَى اللَّهِ فَهُوَ حَسْبُهُ ۚ إِنَّ اللَّهَ بَالِغُ أَمْرِهِ ۚ قَدْ جَعَلَ اللَّهُ لِكُلِّ شَيْءٍ قَدْرًا

And will provide for him from where he does not expect. And whoever relies upon Allah – then He is sufficient for him. Indeed, Allah will accomplish His purpose. Allah has already set for everything a [decreed] extent.

[Talaq 65:3]

Hadith: bukhari;


i’maloo, fa kulu muyussaru li ma khuliqahu

(work (in good deeds), because everyone has had made easy for them what they have been created for).

[Sahih al Bukhari]

I.e. Do good deeds, because whatever has been written for you [in your destiny] will be made easy for you. (we hope that good is written for us in our destiny, and that’s why we are commanded to do good.)

Human Perspective
: Even the things you do often and make a habit of – they become easy for you due to continuous experience.

So keep the habit of good, always think of good (so you are not distracted by bad thoughts which can influence you to do bad.) think of good so you continue to do good deeds, and Allah will make that way of good easy for you.

You condition yourself to do good. If you keep telling yourself you can’t do it – you will give up (this is called Ethicacy) and you will be unable to achieve what you want.

Ease comes when you accept the fact that you have to do it.
You do not complain, rather you do it because you affirm that with this will come reward from Allah.

The proof that this character accepts this fact is from the words;
(sad-daqa bil husna – he confirms the truth of the Ultimate good).

So Allah will make the path of ease easy for him.

When you come with a strong positive attitude, Allah makes it easy for you
. When you have a negative and half-hearted weak attitude – the path remains difficult.


Allah wishes to lighten (the burden) for you; and man was created weak.[Nisa 4:28]

The Sunan and the Musnad compilers recorded that Allah’s Messenger said:

«بُعِثْتُ بِالْحَنِيفِيَّةِ السَّمْحَة»

(I was sent with the easy Hanifiyyah (Islamic Monotheism).)

amma – (as for..)

When one ‘Amma’ is mentioned, you are going to expect another one after it to show comparison.

[callout font_size=”27px” style=”cherry”]Ayah 8:[/callout]
Ayah 8:

وَأَمَّا مَن بَخِلَ وَاسْتَغْنَىٰ
Waamma man bakhila wastaghna

But he who is
greedy miser and thinks himself self-sufficient.

(amma) And as for the one who is Bakhila and Astaghna.

الَّذِينَ يَبْخَلُونَ وَيَأْمُرُونَ النَّاسَ بِالْبُخْلِ – Who are stingy and enjoin upon [other] people stingines… [Nisa’ 4:37]

He became cheap in giving others, but what was the result of that. What did he do when not giving wealth to others? His wealth was stored with him and he became of the Astaghna (those who think they are not in need of anyone else.) they think they are better than others because they have alot of money.

Istighna – to feel not in need of anyone else. What was the cause for Istighna?

Bukhl – hoarding wealth and thinking that he should not spend on others.

Allah said as a response to these type of people;
wastaghna Allah – Allah does not need (them or anyone else).

أَنَّ اللَّهَ غَنِيٌّ حَمِيدٌ inAllaha ghaneey ul hameed – and Allah truly is the Ghaniy – Rich [not in need of anyone else], hameed [most praised]) [Baqarah 2:267].

ash-Shawkani; he was cheap in his wealth, he did not spend his wealth in any of the good causes (even though he had so much opportunities to), he was very reluctant when it came to earning rewards for the hereafter.
He had an attitude of; I don’t need reward in the hereafter, I just need my wealth now in this world. This bukhl (miserly) attitude made him arrogant with istighna’ (thinking he needs nobody else).

[callout font_size=”27px” style=”cherry”]Ayah 9:[/callout]

Ayah 9:


kadhaba bil husna

and he lied against the Ultimate Good (al Husna).

He lied against the religion because of his arrogant attitude of al Istighna’. Thinking his wealth now is enough and that he should not spend it on others.

This is even spreading in parts of the Muslim world;
Some Muslims are getting wealthy in the Muslim world, so they attack the religion.
Before they were poor, but they earned money and were cheap/miserly in giving it to others.
Then they amassed alot of wealth and became arrogant, thinking that the religion should suit their desires, not that they should submit to the religions commands. So they started saying that the religion should be changed or different. = They lied against the Ultimate Good of the religion.

You notice that it is not the poor who have such an attitude, usually it is the ones who have become rich and miserly, thinking that their power and richness (istighna’) should give them such an authority to lie against the religion and its principles.

O Allah, protect us from such characteristics, ameen.

[callout font_size=”27px” style=”cherry”]Ayah 10:[/callout]

Ayah 10:

فَسَنُيَسِّرُهُ لِلْعُسْرَىٰ

sanuyassiruhu lil AAusra

We will soon make the hardest thing easy for him.

This is scary.

Some scholars said this ayah means;
We will make the path to Hell (Jahannam) easy for him.
Ibn Abbas: We will make evil deeds (sharr) easy for him.

‘Usr – the hardest possible thing.

After he develops such an attitude – Allah curses them for their Istighna’ – so He makes them spend their money on alot of worthless things, and the money they waste becomes a source of evil for their future.

I.e. Their children – who they spend their money on – might become a source of evil for them, i.e. The parent might get a heart attack due to an act of their rebellious children, or raised blood pressure etc.
Allah punishes them for their evils from ways they did not expect, because of their rebellion and lying against al Husna (the Ultimate Good).

The very things they invested in. In old age – those investments will be a cause of their stress and loss.

Allah tells His Messenger about the hypocrites;


So let not their wealth or their children impress you. Allah only intends to punish them through them in worldly life and that their souls should depart [at death] while they are disbelievers. [Tawba 9:55]

They were looking for ease in those things, but Allah made the harsh things come to them from them.

O Allah, protect us from that, ameen.

The evil that leads to the punishment of Allah, and it becomes easy for them.

So if you ask them why they do a certain evil, they say ‘i dont know’ – they can’t leave their addiction to an evil, even though they don’t enjoy it – they have become a slave to it so they cannot quit. This brings their gradual destruction.

That’s proof of this ayah.

[callout font_size=”27px” style=”cherry”]Ayah 11:[/callout]

Ayah 11:

وَمَا يُغْنِي عَنْهُ مَالُهُ إِذَا تَرَدَّىٰ

mayughnee AAanhu maaluhu idha taradda

his wealth
is not going to make him free of need when he falls [in a ditch of hell].

radda – slam someone down in a ditch.
taradda – to fall yourself off a ditch or cliff.

What ditch is this? The grave. Or the hellfire. The indignation of evil deeds.

When is the wealth going to help him then?

The one who Allah elevates – he gives up his wealth for Allah. So Allah raises him higher in the ranks of Paradise.

The one who holds back – Allah lowers him. Yet wasn’t he amassing wealth to get honor? But Allah has humiliated him lower and lower until he falls into the ditch of hellfire.

[callout font_size=”27px” style=”cherry”]Ayah 12:[/callout]
Ayah 12:

إِنَّ عَلَيْنَالَلْهُدَىٰ


It is only upon Us, truly to giveguidance.

alayna – upon us (muqaddam – placed before to imply that it is only Allah who can give guidance).

This is a wealth which none owns except Allah.

al Farra
1- By saying this; Real guidance is only that which leads you to Us (Allah).
2 – It is only upon Allah to guide (fujooraha wa taqwaha), and on top of that – He sent al Husna (the Ultimate Good guidance).
Real Guidance is to reach the goal – Allah Himself.

Hassaan ar-Ra’i:

1 – it is only upon Allah to give guidance, He is enough of Allah to clarify the path of guidance.
2 – Guidance in of itself will lead the one journeying to Allah.

[callout font_size=”27px” style=”cherry”]Ayah 13:[/callout]

Ayah 13:

وَإِنَّلَنَا لَلْآخِرَةَ وَالْأُولَىٰ

Wa-innalanalalakhirati wal-oola

and surely, it is only Wesurely – who own the last (life) and the first (life).

We who own the final and earliest (oowla) – We own everything in this life and the next. We mould and change situations how We want.

When He owns it fully – He owns and changes order of it how He wants it to be like. We do not order Allah how He should layout the plans and destiny of everything.

The people can ask of either this life or the next, but they all truly belong to Him.
So you can ask for this life, and He will give you. (people who are not sincere usually just ask for good things in this life). There are others who just ask for good in the next (like the Rahbaniyyah [christian monks of old].

Allah told us to ask for good in  both lives;


Rabbanna aatina fid-dunya hasanah, wa fil akhirati hasanah, wa kinaa azab an-naar

(our Master, give us good in this life, and good in the next life, and save us from the fire.) [al Baqarah 2:201]

The one who wants both of them – ask, and He will give us both.
He owns both, so why not ask for both?

thawab ad-dunya, thawab al akhirah.

Previously, the latter is mentioned first, and then the former is mentioned second.

In surah Qasas;
fa lahul hamdu fil oowla wa fil akhirah.

There – the surah was about the favours of Allah in this life. So we recognised His favours of this life, this is why the hamd/praise mentioned belongs to Him, firstly in this life and the next.

In this surah [Layl]; the focus is more about not getting lost in this world, and focusing more on the next life.
So Allah mentions His ownership of the next life first, since it is given more precedence.

fa lillah al akhirah wal oowla (surah najm) – to Allah belong this life and the next.

Fa inna lana LAL akhirah (surah layl) an extra letter Lam.
The Lam makes an emphasis; TRULY the next life and this life only belong to Him.

This surah has been talking about Ownership. Allah has been talking to people who have istighna’ (thinking they are not in need of anyone else due to their richness).

Allah is telling them that TRULY the next life and this life belong to Him. So they are not really rich, only He is.

Allah is also telling us that everything – including the wealth you have – is Allah’s property.

The people had a mindset that the wealth they had was there’s only, so why should they give it away?
When you know it is Allah’s property – it is easier to give it away to others because you know it wasn’t yours to begin with, and when you give it away – you hope for Allah’s promise of reward.

Why was the word Oowla (what came earlier) used and not Dunya (meaning ‘Inferior’ worldly life)

– This ayah is about Allah’s onwership. It is more befitting to say that to Allah belongs ‘what came earlier’ (oowla). [this is better than saying Dunya, because Allah is too high to be associated with lowly words like ‘inferior/dunya’.

– oowla – everything before
akhirah – everything after.

Oowla covers more meaning than dunya because oowla and aakhirah cover everything, from what came before, to what will come after. This mean’s that to Allah belongs EVERYTHING of the past and future.

[callout font_size=”27px” style=”cherry”]Ayah 14:[/callout]

Ayah 14:

فَأَنذَرْتُكُمْنَارًا تَلَظَّىٰ


So I have warned you of a Sparking/CracklingFire

(prophet Salih warned before but they did not listen).
in this surah – Allah Himself is warning.

– something keeps sparking, crackling, making noise.

tataladhdhaa – this is the full version of the word. But Allah removed the second Ta because He is angry.

After the warning, He is thoroughly warning, scaring you.

Indhar – thoroughly warn and scare. (a Mundhir is a warner). I am scaring you.

Indhaar – sit someone down and make them know the entire situation (assuming they don’t know the entire threat of danger they are in). If they continue to do what you do, there is a danger ahead of you, and explain of its full consequences.

The Qur’an Indhar/warns/explains
– Fully the kind of situation you are in.
– fully explains where you are headed.
– fully aware of what that’s going to do to you.

That’s indhaar.

Allah warns about the fire in the past tense.

Ayah 14 continued:

In other parts of the Qur’an, warning is also mentioned;

– innaa andharnakum adhaaban qareeba (surah naba’)

– andhartukum saa’iqatan mithli saa’iqati ‘aadin wa thamood (surah fussilat) – i have warned you of an explosion, like the explosion of ‘aad and thamood.

Warned, warned.. All these warnings are Past tense.

There is only one case of warning in the present tense;
ina ma undhirukum bil wahy – i am warning you (present tense) with Revelation.

: When Allah warns of only one thing specifically (i.e. hereafter, punishment etc.) – He mentions past tense. When He warns of many things (wahy contains all forms of information) – He will mention present tense.

So wahy can; encourage good deeds, of forbid evils, warn you of the Last Day etc. Many things which are continuously revealed – in the present tense – of the life of Allah’s Messenger. This is why present tense is more suitable.

The biggest warning is the hellfire. A singular thing. So it is placed in the past tense;

I have warned you of a Hellfire..

[callout font_size=”27px” style=”cherry”]Ayah 15:[/callout]
Ayah 15:

لَا يَصْلَاهَا إِلَّا الْأَشْقَى

La yaslaha illaal-ashqa

None will throw themselves in it except the most wretched.

yasla – literally means to
throw ones self in.

ashqa – the most wretched
[one who does evil, despicable crimes].

in surah Shams, Allah told us what this ashqa / wretched person did in this life. He killed a miracle camel from Allah, so Allah killed him and his people for their evil.

Allah in this surah tells us what will happen to this ashqa/wretched person in the next life;

He will throw himself into the blazing hot, crackling, sparking fire.

None will enter it except the most wretched.

The most wretched approached the miracle she camel of Allah, while Prophet Salih warned him not to go close to it.
Now Allah’s Messenger is telling the Quraysh to come close to the Qur’an, but they are distancing themselves away from it.
In each circumstance – the warning is Allah’s punishment in this life and the fire.

No-one will go into this type of crackling, sparking fire – except (il-laa) the Ashqa (the most unfortunate person).

How is he unfortunate?

[callout font_size=”27px” style=”cherry”]Ayah 16:[/callout]
Ayah 16:

الَّذِي كَذَّبَ وَتَوَلَّىٰ

kadh-dhaba wa tawal-la

he lied against the truth and turned away.

this person lied against the Husna (Ultimate good) – see ayah 9.

then he turned away from it – that was a big crime in the sight of Allah because he denied the guidance of Allah while knowing it is the truth.

Assaam ar-Ra’i: Who else does he turn away from?
The people who ask him (i.e. the needy etc.)
this opinion is based on ayah 8 of this surah – as for the one who is greedy and miserly (bakhila wa is-staghna)

Allah does not tell us specifically what he turns away from because the Theme of the surah is to fill in the missing gaps. You should know now.

[callout font_size=”27px” style=”cherry”]Ayah 17:[/callout]

Ayah 17:

وَسَيُجَنَّبُهَا الْأَتْقَى

sayujannabuha al-atqa

and soon the most fearful (attqa) will be warded away from it.

Attqa – those who have the MOST fear/God consciessness.
This is a level higher than muttaqeen.
(attqa – in the linguistic form of afdal)

Janaba – to be on the side. Tajanub – to be taken on the side.

Tajneeb – to be taken extremely FAR to the side.
This is what is being used in this ayah.
Moved FAR away from the hellfire and placed on the FAR side where there is total safety.

And the most righteous will soon be turned far away from it.

Al Wahidi
: al Atqa refers to Abu Bakr, because these aayaat are referring to him when he brought and freed a group of Muslim slaves who were being tortured by the disbelievers.
And due to that – these aayaat came down.

The Amazement of these 2 Aayaat:
Allah is telling us through these two earlier aayaat;
None will enter the Naarun Taladdhaa (crackling blazing fire) except the Ashqa (most wretched).

He then says that the Atqa (most God fearing) will be the saved ones who will be turned away from the fire.

What is amazing about this?

Allah is saying that the Ashqa (most wretched) will EXCLUSIVELY go to that specific crackling fire.

He is not saying that the Atqa (most God fearing) will EXCLUSIVELY be turned away from the fire.

Meaning: those who are not on such a high level of God fearness/consciessness as the Atqa will also be turned away from the fire.

This is the amazing Mercy of Allah, because if He used the same sentence structure in both aayaat – it would mean that we would all go to hell – unless we were on the highest level of Atqa (fear of Allah/God consciessness).

The language of the Qur’an is VERY precise.
Allah has told us that those who have the most taqwa will be turned away from the fire, and also some of those below them in taqwa.

O Allah, make us of those with the highest amount of Taqwa.

How can you be of the Atqa?

aladhee yu’tee maalahu LI ya tazak-ka.
he gave his wealth FOR his purification.

But the LI is not in this ayah.


Because Allah is teaching us that giving wealth will not purify you guaranteed, rather – Allah will purify who He wills.

Yata zak-ka – this then implies that he HOPES Allah will purify him.

So you give a generous gift to the poor for Allah’s pleasure, and you hope that Allah will cleanse you.

O Allah, cleanse and purify us inwardly and outwardly. Ameen.

The surah began; amma man a’ttaa (as for the one who gives alot).


[callout font_size=”27px” style=”cherry”]Ayah 18:[/callout]

Ayah 18:

الَّذِي يُؤْتِي مَالَهُ يَتَزَكَّىٰ
aladhee yu’tee maalahuyatazak-ka

he gives from his wealthto purify himself.

We see that to purify ourselves, Allah is telling us to continuously give, even if it is a little.
In the ayah of a’tta – no specific giving is mentioned. (i.e. It could refer to; Time, effort, your youth, talents, your life, and even your money if you have alot of it, etc). This means he gave alot of everything he had available.

In this ayah – wealth has been mentioned. Not everyone can give alot of wealth, so Allah has mentioned that this person gives a little bit (yu/tee) of wealth to purify himself. In comparison to the a’tta mentioned before.

Give a seed, give something. He didn’t mention alot of wealth because not everyone is rich. But He mentioned a’tta to alot of other things which you DO have.

Just make it a habit, give a little every now and then. Make a sadaqa (charity) box, teach your family and encourage them to give and be generous. Whenever you give them a gift – remind them to be generous in giving to others too.

We give our kids toys, and we don’t teach them to give things back. Teach them to give to each other, to the relatives, to the neighbour, to their friends.
A father once brought some chocolates and gave them to his wife, asked her to put them on a plate. Then they gave the chocolates to the young daughter and share them with the family and relatives.
This teaches children generosity and the joy of sharing from a young age.

Or you should buy new clothes and give them to some poor person. Make your children imagine the great reward Allah will give them for doing that in the next life. Teach them this from a young age so they love that and learn generosity. If you don’t teach this from a young age, it will be too late by the time they are teenagers – since they will begin to get influenced by society and friends more than the home.

( لَن تَنَالُوا الْبِرَّ حَتَّىٰ تُنفِقُوا مِمَّا تُحِبُّونَ ۚ وَمَا تُنفِقُوا مِن شَيْءٍ فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ بِهِ عَلِيمٌ

Never will you attain the good [reward] until you spend [in the way of Allah ] from that which you love. And whatever you spend – indeed, Allah is Knowing of it. [aal Imran 3:92]

[callout font_size=”27px” style=”cherry”]Ayah 19:[/callout]
Ayah 19:

وَمَا لِأَحَدٍ عِندَهُ مِن نِّعْمَةٍ تُجْزَىٰ
Wama li-ahadinAAindahu min niAAmatintujza

And have in his mind no favour from anyone for which a reward is expected in return,

He didn’t have anyone infront of him to which he should be payed back.

So only for his purification and for Allah’s face – that’s the only reason you give.
Not for cultural norms, not for fame – only so Allah purifies you. And it doesn’t matter if people criticize you because that will make your intention more firmer for Allah’s sake instead of for popularity or worldly gain.

So fear should not prevent you from giving.

“And there was not a single person that had a blessing for him that should be payed back”

how can there be anyone who will pay him back for what he gave?

jazaa – payback – giving someone absolutely so there is no dissatisfaction left

[callout font_size=”27px” style=”cherry”]Ayah 20:[/callout]
Ayah 20:

إِلَّا ابْتِغَاءَ وَجْهِرَبِّهِ الْأَعْلَىٰ
Illa ibtighaawajhirabbihi al-aAAla

But only seekingthe face of his Lord, Most High.

Except in pursuit of the face / pleasure (ontentment of his Most High/Supreme Lord.

This lowers and humbles us, even if we have alot of wealth, our Master Allah is the Most Supreme.

ibtigha – seek out, it also means to rebel.
Combined the 2 meanings to mean:
you cross all limits to seek/get it. (interpretation by Raghib al Isfahani)

A– mansoob (A/fat-ha/zabar at the end) implies:-

– Because of that pursuit of Allah’s pleasure – they started giving. (i.e. They would pray and fast alot, and then they realised how beloved giving in charity is in the sight of Allah – so they started giving wealth seeking Allah’s pleasure).

wajh = face
i.e. for His pleasure.

wa la sawfa yardda –

Ibn Katheer
: the one who acquires the attributes mentioned in this surah – he will soon be very very content.

this world is all about being content. Everyone strives for happiness/content.

Allah is teaching us that we just want to be content – we only want to collect money to be happy, so He is telling us that we should seek His face by giving – and He will make us content/satisfied/ardda.

Allah will give you what all humans are striving for – happiness and satisfaction.

In the remembrance of Allah do hearts find satisfaction (surah ar-Ra’d)

La – can be illustrated as an Oath/emphasis which hasn’t been said.

Ibn Katheer: and i truly Swear by Allah that he will be pleased when Allah gives him satisfaction and rewards.

[callout font_size=”27px” style=”cherry”]Ayah 21:[/callout]

Ayah 21:

وَلَسَوْفَ يَرْضَىٰ

wa La

He surely soon will be pleased (when he will enter Paradise).

This is being said to an audience who is happy to run after and gather the wealth of this world without helping the poor.

Allah is swearing, doing an oath – that for sure you will be happy if you acquire the characteristics of such righteous people.

You will find tranquility and contentment.

Ibn Katheer: These narrations may be about Abu Bakr as-Siddeeq.

Most scholars said they think it refers to Abu Bakr because Allah says; al Atqa (the most God fearing/consciess) – which is Abu Bakr after all the Prophets’.

So we should strive to be like Abu Bakr.