Surah Al-Anbiya Ayat 98 in Arabic Text
Here you can read various translations of verse 98
Indeed, you [disbelievers] and what you worship other than Allah are the firewood of Hell. You will be coming to [enter] it.
Verily ye, (unbelievers), and the (false) gods that ye worship besides Allah, are (but) fuel for Hell! to it will ye (surely) come!
(They will be told): “Verily you and the gods you worshipped beside Allah are the fuel of Hell. All of you are bound to arrive there.
Certainly! You (disbelievers) and that which you are worshipping now besides Allah, are (but) fuel for Hell! (Surely), you will enter it.
Lo! ye (idolaters) and that which ye worship beside Allah are fuel of hell. Thereunto ye will come.
Surely you and whatever you worshiped apart from Allah are gravel for Hell; you will herd (yourselves) down to it.
You [disbelievers] and what you worship instead of God will be fuel for Hell: that is where you will go-
Quran 21 Verse 98 Explanation
For those looking for commentary to help with the understanding of Surah Al-Anbiya ayat 98, we’ve provided two Tafseer works below. The first is the tafseer of Abul Ala Maududi, the second is of Ibn Kathir.
(21:98) (They will be told): “Verily you and the gods you worshipped beside Allah are the fuel of Hell. All of you are bound to arrive there.
95. We learn from traditions that Abdullah bin Azzaara raised an objection in this connection, saying: According to this not only our deities but Prophets Jesus and Uzair (peace be upon them) and the Angels also will become fuel for Hell because they are also worshiped. The Prophet (peace be upon him) replied: Yes, everyone who would approve of his own worship instead of Allah’s will go to Hell along with those who worshiped him. He meant to say: There is no reason why Prophets Jesus and Uzair (peace be upon them) and the Angels should go to Hell because they never approved that they should be worshiped instead of Allah, and were not responsible for this. On the other hand, they taught people to worship Allah alone. Of course, those who tried to become deities and became partners in the shirk of others will certainly go to Hell along with their worshipers. Likewise those, who induced others to take deities other than Allah, will go to Hell. Satan comes under this category for he induces others to make deities. Thus it is Satan who is made the real deity whom they obey and commit shirk. Besides this, idols of stone and wood and other accessories of shirk will also be thrown into Hell along with the mushriks so that the latter should see that their deities were becoming a cause of the intensity of their torture of fire instead of becoming their intercessors.
98. Certainly you and that which you are worshipping now besides Allah, are (but) fuel (Hasab) for Hell! (Surely) you will enter it. 99. Had these been gods, they would not have entered there (Hell), and all of them will abide therein forever. 100. Therein they will be breathing out with deep sighs and roaring and therein they will hear not. 101. Verily, those for whom the good has preceded from Us, they will be removed far therefrom (Hell). 102. They shall not hear the slightest sound of it (Hell), while they abide in that which their own selves desire. 103. The greatest terror will not grieve them, and the angels will meet them, (with the greeting) “This is your Day which you were promised.”
Allah says to the people of Makkah, the idolators of the Quraysh and those who followed their religion of idol worship:
(Certainly you and that which you are worshipping now besides Allah, are (but) Hasab for Hell!). Ibn `Abbas said: “Kindling.” This is like the Ayah:
(whose fuel is men and stones) ﴿66:6﴾. According to another report, Ibn `Abbas said:
(Hasab for Hell) means firewood in (the dialect of the people of) Zanjiyyah. Mujahid, `Ikrimah and Qatadah said: “Its fuel.” Ad-Dahhak said: “The fuel of Hell means that which is thrown into it.” This was also the view of others.
((Surely) you will enter it.) means, you will go into it.
(Had these been gods, they would not have entered there,) means, if these idols and false gods which you worshipped instead of Allah, had really been gods, they would not have entered the Hellfire.
(and all of them will abide therein forever.) means, the worshippers and the objects of their worship will all abide therein forever.
(Therein they will be breathing out with deep sighs and roaring) This is like the Ayah:
(they will have (in the Fire), Zafir and Shahiq) ﴿11:106﴾. Zafir refers to their exhalation, and Shahiq refers to their inhalation.
(and therein they will hear not.)
(Verily, those for whom the good has preceded from Us,) `Ikrimah said, “Mercy.” Others said it means being blessed.
(they will be removed far therefrom.) When Allah mentions the people of Hell and their punishment for their associating others in worship with Allah, He follows that with a description of the blessed who believed in Allah and His Messengers. These are the ones for whom the blessing has preceded from Allah, and they did righteous deeds in the world, as Allah says:
(For those who have done good is the best reward and even more) ﴿10:26﴾
(Is there any reward for good other than good) ﴿55:60﴾ Just as they did good in this world, Allah will make their final destiny and their reward good; He will save them from punishment and give them a great reward.
(they will be removed far therefrom. They shall not hear the slightest sound of it,) means, they will not feel its heat in their bodies.
(while they abide in that which their own selves desire.) means, they will be safe from that which they fear, and they will have all that they love and desire. It was said that this was revealed to point out an exception in the case of those who are worshipped instead of Allah, and to exclude `Uzayr and the Messiah from their number. Hajjaj bin Muhammad Al-A`war reported from Ibn Jurayj, and `Uthman bin `Ata’ reported from Ibn `Abbas:
(Certainly you (disbelievers) and that which you are worshipping now besides Allah, are (but) Hasab for Hell! (Surely) you will enter it.) Then He made an exception and said:
(Verily, those for whom the good has preceded from Us.) It was said that this referred to the angels and `Isa, and others who are worshipped instead of Allah. This was the view of `Ikrimah, Al-Hasan and Ibn Jurayj. Muhammad bin Ishaq bin Yasar said in his book of Sirah: “According to what I have heard, the Messenger of Allah sat down one day with Al-Walid bin Al-Mughirah in the Masjid, and An-Nadr bin Al-Harith came and sat down with them. There were also other men of Quraysh in the Masjid. The Messenger of Allah spoke, then An-Nadr bin Al-Harith came up to him and the Messenger of Allah spoke to him until he defeated him in argument. Then he recited to him and to them,
(Certainly you and that which you are worshipping now besides Allah, are (but) Hasab for Hell! (Surely) you will enter it.) Until His Statement,
(and therein they will hear not.) Then the Messenger of Allah got up and went to sit with `Abdullah bin Al-Zab`ari As-Sahmi. Al-Walid bin Al-Mughirah said to `Abdullah bin Al-Zab`ari, “By Allah, An-Nadr bin Al-Harith could not match the son of `Abd Al-Muttalib in argument. Muhammad claims that we and these gods that we worship are fuel for Hell.” `Abdullah bin Az-Zab`ari said: “By Allah, if I meet with him I will defeat him in argument. Ask Muhammad whether everyone that is worshipped instead of Allah will be in Hell with those who worshipped him, for we worship the angels, and the Jews worship `Uzayr, and the Christians worship Al-Masih, `Isa bin Maryam.” Al-Walid and those who were sitting with him were amazed at what `Abdullah bin Az-Zab`ari said, and they thought that he had come up with a good point. He said this to the Messenger of Allah , who said:
(Everyone who likes to be worshipped instead of Allah will be with the ones who worshipped him, for indeed they are worshipping the Shaytan and whoever told them to worship him.) Then Allah revealed the words:
(Verily, those for whom the good has preceded from Us, they will be removed far therefrom (Hell). They shall not hear the slightest sound of it (Hell), while they abide in that which their own selves desire.) It was revealed about the mention of `Isa, `Uzayr and rabbis and monks who were also worshipped, who had spent their lives in devotion towards Allah, but the misguided people who came after them took them as lords instead of Allah. Concerning the notion of worshipping the angels as daughters of Allah, the following words were revealed:
(And they say: “The Most Gracious has begotten children. ” Glory to Him! They are but honored slaves). Until His saying,
(And if any of them should say: “Verily, I am a god besides Him,” such a one We should recompense with Hell. Thus We recompense the wrongdoers.) ﴿21:26-29﴾. Concerning `Isa bin Maryam, the fact that he is worshipped alongside Allah, and the amazement of Al-Walid and the others who were present at the argument ﴿of `Abdullah bin Az-Zab’ari﴾, the following words were revealed:
(And when the son of Maryam is quoted as an example, behold, your people cry aloud (laugh out at the example). And say: “Are our gods better or is he” They quoted not the above example except for argument. Nay! But they are a quarrelsome people. He was not more than a slave. We granted Our favor to him, and We made him an example for the Children of Israel. And if it were Our will, We would have made angels to replace you on the earth. And he shall be a known sign for the Hour. Therefore have no doubt concerning it.) ﴿43:57-61﴾ meaning, the miracles and signs that happened at his hands, such as raising the dead and healing the sick, are sufficient as signs of the approach of the Hour,
(Therefore have no doubt concerning it. And follow Me (Allah)! This is the straight path) ﴿43:63﴾.” What Ibn Az-Zab`ari said was a serious mistake, because the Ayah was addressed to the people of Makkah concerning their worship of idols which were inanimate and could not think. It was a rebuke for their worship of them, so Allah said:
(Certainly you (disbelievers) and that which you are worshipping now besides Allah, are (but) Hasab for Hell!) How could this be applied to Al-Masih, `Uzayr and others who did righteous deeds and did not accept the worship of those who worshipped them
(The greatest terror will not grieve them,) It was said that this means death, as was narrated by `Abdur-Razzaq from Yahya bin Rabi`ah from `Ata.’ Or it was said that the greatest terror refers to the blast of the Trumpet, as Al-`Awfi said narrating from Ibn `Abbas and Abu Sinan, Sa`id bin Sinan Ash-Shaybani. This was the view favored by Ibn Jarir in his Tafsir.
(and the angels will meet them, (with the greeting) “This is your Day which you were promised”.) meaning, the angels will greet them on the Day of Resurrection when they emerge from their graves with the words:
(“This is your Day which you were promised”.) meaning, hope for the best.
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