Surah Al-A’raf Ayat 190 in Arabic Text
Here you can read various translations of verse 190
But when He gives them a good [child], they ascribe partners to Him concerning that which He has given them. Exalted is Allah above what they associate with Him.
But when He giveth them a goodly child, they ascribe to others a share in the gift they have received: but Allah is exalted high above the partners they ascribe to Him.
But when He vouchsafes them a healthy child, they attribute to Him partners regarding what Allah had bestowed upon them. Subliminally exalted is Allah above that which they associate with Him.
But when He gave them a Salih (good in every aspect) child, they ascribed partners to Him (Allah) in that which He has given to them. High be Allah, Exalted above all that they ascribe as partners to Him. (Tafsir At-Tabari, Vol. 9, Page 148).
But when He gave unto them aright, they ascribed unto Him partners in respect of that which He had given them. High is He Exalted above all that they associate (with Him).
Then, as soon as He brought them a righteous (child), they set up for Him associates in what He had brought them. Yet Allah is Supremely Exalted above whatever they associate..
and yet when He gives them a good child they ascribe some of what He has granted them to others.
Quran 7 Verse 190 Explanation
For those looking for commentary to help with the understanding of Surah Al-A’raf ayat 190, we’ve provided two Tafseer works below. The first is the tafseer of Abul Ala Maududi, the second is of Ibn Kathir.
(7:190) But when He vouchsafes them a healthy child, they attribute to Him partners regarding what Allah had bestowed upon them. Subliminally exalted is Allah above that which they associate with Him.
146. The present and succeeding (verses 190-8) seek to refute polytheism. These verses are devoted to highlighting the implications of the postulate which even the polytheists affirmed – that it is God Who originally created the human species. They also acknowledge that every human being owes his existence to God. God also holds absolute power over the entire process leading to man’s birth, right from the fertilization of the ovurn in the uterus to its onward development in the form of a living being, then investing it with numerous faculties and ensuring its birth as a sound, healthy baby. No one has the power to prevent God, if He so willed, from causing a wornan to give birth to an animal or to odd creature, or to a physically or mentally handicapped baby. This fact is also equally acknowledged by monotheists and polytheists. It is for this reason that in the final stage of pregnancy, people are inclined to turn to God and pray for the birth of a sound and healthy baby.
It is, however, the very, height of man’s ignorance and folly that after a sound and healthy baby has been born as a result of God’s will, man makes offerings at the altars of false gods, goddesses, or saints. Occasionally the names given to the child (e.g., ‘abd al-Rasul, ‘abd al-‘Uzza, ‘abd Shams, etc.) also indicate that man feels grateful to others than God and regardsthe child as a gift either of sorne Prophet, some noted Companion of the Prophet (peace be on him), or some other noted personality such as his spiritual mentor rather than a gift from God.
There has been some misunderstanding with regard to the point emphasized here. This misunderstanding has been further reinforced by traditions of doubtful authenticity. The Qur’an mentions that human being’s are created from a single person, and obviously here that person means Adam (peace be on him). Now this reference to one person is soon followed by reference to his spouse, and that both prayed to God for the birth of a sound and healthy baby. And when that prayer was accepted, the couple are mentioned as having associated others with God in the granting of His favour.
The misunderstanding consists in considering this couple, who fell prey to polytheism, to be Adam and Eve. People resorted to unauthentic traditions to explain the above verse and the story which thus gained acceptance was the following. It was claimed that Eve suffered several mishaps since her offspring would die after birth. Satan seized this opportunity to mislead her into naming her baby Abd al-Harith (the slave of Satan). (See the comments of Ibn Kathir on verse 190. Cf. Ahmad b. Hanbal, Musnad, vol. 5, p. 11 – Ed.) What is most shocking is that some of these unsubstantiated traditions have been ascribed to the Prophet (peace be on him). The fact, however, is that the above account does not have even an iota of truth. Nor is it, in any way, corroborated by the Qur’an itself. The only point brought home by the Qur’an is that it is God alone, to the total exclusion of every one else, Who brought the first human couple into being. And again it is God alone Who causes the birth of each baby born out of the intercourse between a man and a woman. The Qur’an also points out that the of this truth is innate in human nature which is evident from the fact that in states of distress and crisis man turns prayerfully to God alone. Ironically, however, after God blesses those prayers with acceptance, a number of people associate others with God in His divinity. The fact is that the present verses do not refer to any particular man and woman. The allusion is in fact to every man and woman enmeshed in polytheism.
Here another point deserves attention. These verses condemn the Arabian polytheists on account of the fact that when God granted them sound children in response to their prayers they associated others with God in offering thanks. But what is the situation of many Muslims of today who strongly believe in the unity of God? Their situation seems even worse. It is not uncommon for them to ask others than God to grant children. They, make vows during pregnancy to others than God, and make offerings to others than God after child-birth. Yet they are satisfied that they have a full guarantee of Paradise since they are believers in the One True God whereas the Arabian polytheists would inevitably be consigned to Hell. It is only the doctrinal errors of the pre-Islamic Arabian polytheists which may be condemned. The doctrinal errors of Muslims are beyond all criticism and censure.
The tafsir of Surah Al-A’raf verse 190 by Ibn Kathir is unavailable here.
Please refer to Surah A’raf ayat 189 which provides the complete commentary from verse 189 through 190.
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