Surah Al-An’am >> Currently viewing Surah Al-An’am Ayat 165 (6:165)

Surah Al-An’am Ayat 165 in Arabic Text

وَهُوَ ٱلَّذِى جَعَلَكُمْ خَلَـٰٓئِفَ ٱلْأَرْضِ وَرَفَعَ بَعْضَكُمْ فَوْقَ بَعْضٍۢ دَرَجَـٰتٍۢ لِّيَبْلُوَكُمْ فِى مَآ ءَاتَىٰكُمْ ۗ إِنَّ رَبَّكَ سَرِيعُ ٱلْعِقَابِ وَإِنَّهُۥ لَغَفُورٌۭ رَّحِيمٌۢ
Wa Huwal lazee ja’alakum khalaaa’ifal ardi wa rafa’a ba’dakum fawqa ba’din darajaatil liyabluwakum fee maaa aataakum; inna Rabbaka saree’ul ‘iqaabi wa innahoo la Ghafoorur Raheem (section 20)

English Translation

Here you can read various translations of verse 165

Sahih International
And it is He who has made you successors upon the earth and has raised some of you above others in degrees [of rank] that He may try you through what He has given you. Indeed, your Lord is swift in penalty; but indeed, He is Forgiving and Merciful.

Yusuf Ali
It is He Who hath made you (His) agents, inheritors of the earth: He hath raised you in ranks, some above others: that He may try you in the gifts He hath given you: for thy Lord is quick in punishment: yet He is indeed Oft-forgiving, Most Merciful.

Abul Ala Maududi
For He it is Who has appointed you vicegerent over the earth, and has exalted some of you over others in rank that He may try you in what He has bestowed is upon you. Indeed your Lord is swift in retribution, and He is certainly AllForgiving, All-Compassionate.

Muhsin Khan
And it is He Who has made you generations coming after generations, replacing each other on the earth. And He has raised you in ranks, some above others that He may try you in that which He has bestowed on you. Surely your Lord is Swift in retribution, and certainly He is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.

Pickthall
He it is Who hath placed you as viceroys of the earth and hath exalted some of you in rank above others, that He may try you by (the test of) that which He hath given you. Lo! Thy Lord is swift in prosecution, and Lo! He verily is Forgiving, Merciful.

Dr. Ghali
And He is (The One) Who made you succeeding each other (in) the earth, and has raised some of you above others (Literally: above “some” others) in degrees, that He may try you in what He has brought you. Surely your Lord is swift in punishment, and surely He is indeed Ever-Forgiving, Ever-Merciful.

Abdel Haleem
It is He who made you successors on the earth and raises some of you above others in rank, to test you through what He gives you. [Prophet], your Lord is swift in punishment, yet He is most forgiving and merciful.

Quran 6 Verse 165 Explanation

For those looking for commentary to help with the understanding of Surah Al-An’am ayat 165, we’ve provided two Tafseer works below. The first is the tafseer of Abul Ala Maududi, the second is of Ibn Kathir.

Ala-Maududi

(6:165) For He it is Who has appointed you vicegerent over the earth, and has exalted some of you over others in rank that He may try you in what He has bestowed is upon you.[146] Indeed your Lord is swift in retribution, and He is certainly AllForgiving, All-Compassionate.


146. This statement embodies three important truths: First, that human beings as such are vicegerents of God on earth, so that God has entrusted them with many things and endowed them with the power to use them. Second, it is God Himself Who has created differences of rank among His vicegerents. The trust placed in some is more than that of others. Some men have been granted control of more resources than others. Some are more gifted in respect of their abilities. Likewise, some human beings have been placed under the trust of others. Third, all this is indeed designed to test man. The entire life. of man is in fact, a vast examination wherein man is being tested about the trust he has received from God: how sensitive he is to that trust, to what extent he lives up to it, and to what extent he proves to be competent with it. What position man will be able to attain in the Next Life depends on the result of this test.

Ibn-Kathir

165. And it is He Who has made you generations coming after generations, replacing each other on the earth. And He has raised you in ranks, some above others that He may try you in that which He has bestowed on you. Surely, your Lord is Swift in retribution, and certainly He is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.


Allah Made Mankind Dwellers on the earth, Generation After Generation, of Various Grades, in order to Test Them

Allah said,

﴿وَهُوَ الَّذِى جَعَلَكُمْ خَلَـئِفَ الاٌّرْضِ﴾

(And it is He Who has made you generations coming after generations, replacing each other on the earth.) meaning, He made you dwell on the earth generation after generation, century after century and offspring after forefathers, according to Ibn Zayd and others. Allah also said,

﴿وَلَوْ نَشَآءُ لَجَعَلْنَا مِنكُمْ مَّلَـئِكَةً فِى الاٌّرْضِ يَخْلُفُونَ ﴾

(And if it were Our will, We would have made angels to replace you on the earth) ﴿43:60﴾, and,

﴿وَيَجْعَلُكُمْ حُلَفَآءَ الاٌّرْضِ﴾

(And makes you inheritors of the Earth, generations after generations.) ﴿27:62﴾, and

﴿إِنِّي جَاعِلٌ فِى الأَرْضِ خَلِيفَةً﴾

(Verily, I am going to place (mankind) generations after generations on earth.) ﴿2:30﴾, and,

﴿عَسَى رَبُّكُمْ أَن يُهْلِكَ عَدُوَّكُمْ وَيَسْتَخْلِفَكُمْ فِى الاٌّرْضِ فَيَنظُرَ كَيْفَ تَعْمَلُونَ﴾

(It may be that your Lord will destroy your enemy and make you successors on the earth, so that He may see how you act.) ﴿7:129﴾ Allah’s statement,

﴿وَرَفَعَ بَعْضَكُمْ فَوْقَ بَعْضٍ دَرَجَـتٍ﴾

(And He has raised you in ranks, some above others,) means, He has made you different from each other with regards to provision, conduct, qualities, evilness, shapes, color of skin, and so forth, and He has the perfect wisdom in all this. Allah said in other Ayat,

﴿نَحْنُ قَسَمْنَا بَيْنَهُمْ مَّعِيشَتَهُمْ فِى الْحَيَوةِ الدُّنْيَا وَرَفَعْنَا بَعْضَهُمْ فَوْقَ بَعْضٍ دَرَجَـتٍ لِّيَتَّخِذَ بَعْضُهُم بَعْضاً سُخْرِيّاً﴾

(It is We Who portion out between them their livelihood in this world, and We raised some of them above others in ranks, so that some may employ others in their work.) ﴿43:32﴾, and,

﴿انظُرْ كَيْفَ فَضَّلْنَا بَعْضَهُمْ عَلَى بَعْضٍ وَلَلاٌّخِرَةُ أَكْبَرُ دَرَجَـتٍ وَأَكْبَرُ تَفْضِيلاً ﴾

(See how We prefer one above another (in this world), and verily, the Hereafter will be greater in degrees and greater in preferment.) ﴿17:21﴾ Allah’s statement,

﴿لِّيَبْلُوَكُمْ فِى مَآ ءَاتَـكُم﴾

(that He may try you in that which He has bestowed on you.) means, so that He tests you in what He has granted you, for Allah tries the rich concerning his wealth and will ask him about how he appreciated it. He also tries the poor concerning his poverty and will ask him about his patience with it. Muslim recorded that Abu Sa`id Al-Khudri said that the Messenger of Allah said,

«إِنَّ الدُّنْيَا حُلْوَةٌ خَضِرَةٌ وَإِنَّ اللهَ مُسْتَخْلِفُكُمْ فِيهَا فَنَاظِرٌ مَاذَا تَعْمَلُونَ، فَاتَّقُوا الدُّنْيَا وَاتَّقُوا النِّسَاءَ فَإِنَّ أَوَّلَ فِتْنَةِ بَنِي إِسْرَائِيلَ كَانَتْ فِي النِّسَاء»

(Verily, this life is beautiful and green, and Allah made you dwell in it generation after generation so that He sees what you will do. Therefore, beware of this life and beware of women, for the first trial that the Children of Israel suffered from was with women.) Allah’s statement,

﴿إِنَّ رَبَّكَ سَرِيعُ الْعِقَابِ وَإِنَّهُ لَغَفُورٌ رَّحِيمٌ﴾

(Surely, your Lord is swift in retribution, and certainly He is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.) this is both discouragement and encouragement, by reminding the believers that Allah is swift in reckoning and punishment with those who disobey Him and defy His Messengers,

﴿وَإِنَّهُ لَغَفُورٌ رَّحِيمٌ﴾

(And certainly He is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.) for those who take Him as protector and follow His Messengers in the news and commandments they conveyed. Allah often mentions these two attributes together in the Qur’an. Allah said,

﴿وَإِنَّ رَبَّكَ لَذُو مَغْفِرَةٍ لِّلنَّاسِ عَلَى ظُلْمِهِمْ وَإِنَّ رَبَّكَ لَشَدِيدُ الْعِقَابِ﴾

(But verily, your Lord is full of forgiveness for mankind in spite of their wrongdoing. And verily, your Lord is (also) severe in punishment) ﴿13:6﴾, and,

﴿نَبِّىءْ عِبَادِى أَنِّى أَنَا الْغَفُورُ الرَّحِيمُ – وَأَنَّ عَذَابِى هُوَ الْعَذَابُ الاٌّلِيمُ ﴾

(Declare unto My servants, that truly, I am the Oft-Forgiving, the Most Merciful. And that My torment is indeed the most painful torment.) ﴿15:49-50﴾ There are similar Ayat that contain encouragement and discouragement. Sometimes Allah calls His servants to Him with encouragement, describing Paradise and making them eager for what He has with Him. Sometimes, He calls His servants with discouragement, mentioning the Fire and its torment and punishment, as well as, the Day of Resurrection and its horrors. Sometimes Allah mentions both so that each person is affected by it according to his or her qualities. We ask Allah that He makes us among those who obey what He has commanded, avoid what He has prohibited, and believe in Him as He has informed. Certainly, He is Near, hears and answers the supplication, and He is the Most Kind, Generous and Bestowing. Imam Ahmad recorded that Abu Hurayrah said that the Messenger of Allah said,

«لَوْ يَعْلَمُ الْمُؤْمِنُ مَا عِنْدَ اللهِ مِنَ الْعُقُوبَةِ مَا طَمِعَ بِجَنَّتِهِ أَحَدٌ، وَلَوْ يَعْلَمُ الْكَافِرُ مَااِعنْدَ اللهِ مِنَ الرَّحْمَةِ مَا قَنَطَ أَحَدٌ مِنَ الْجَنَّةِ، خَلَقَ اللهُ مِائَةَ رَحْمَةٍ فَوَضَعَ وَاحِدَةً بَيْنَ خَلْقِهِ يَتَرَاحَمُونَ بِهَا وَعِنْدَ اللهِ تِسْعَةٌ وَتِسْعُون»

(If the believer knew Allah’s punishment, no one will hope in entering His Paradise. And if the disbeliever knew Allah’s mercy, no one will feel hopeless of acquiring Paradise. Allah created a hundred kinds of mercy. He sent down one of them to His creation, and they are merciful to each other on that account. With Allah, there remains ninety-nine kinds of mercy.) Muslim and At-Tirmidhi also recorded this Hadith, At-Tirmidhi said “Hasan”. Abu Hurayrah narrated that the Messenger of Allah said,

«لَمَّا خَلَقَ اللهُ الْخَلْقَ كَتَبَ فِي كِتَابٍ فَهُوَ عِنْدَهُ فَوْقَ الْعَرْشِ إِنَّ رَحْمَتِي تَغْلِبُ غَضَبِي»

(When Allah created the creation, He wrote in a Book, and this Book is with Him above the Throne: `My mercy overcomes My anger.’) This is the end of the Tafsir of Surat Al-An`am, all the thanks and appreciation for Allah.

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