Surah Al-Baqarah >> Currently viewing Surah Baqarah Ayat 134 (2:134)

Surah Baqarah Ayat 134 in Arabic Text

تِلْكَ أُمَّةٌۭ قَدْ خَلَتْ ۖ لَهَا مَا كَسَبَتْ وَلَكُم مَّا كَسَبْتُمْ ۖ وَلَا تُسْـَٔلُونَ عَمَّا كَانُوا۟ يَعْمَلُونَ
Tilka ummatun qad khalat lahaa maa kasabat wa lakum maa kasabtum wa laa tus’aloona ‘ammaa kaanoo ya’maloon

English Translation

Here you can read various translations of verse 134

Sahih International
That was a nation which has passed on. It will have [the consequence of] what it earned, and you will have what you have earned. And you will not be asked about what they used to do.

Yusuf Ali
“That was a people that hath passed away. They shall reap the fruit of what they did, and ye of what ye do! Of their merits there is no question in your case!

Abul Ala Maududi
They were a people who passed away; they shall receive the reward of what they earned and you shall have the reward of what you will earn; and you will not be questioned as to what they did.

Muhsin Khan
That was a nation who has passed away. They shall receive the reward of what they earned and you of what you earn. And you will not be asked of what they used to do.

Pickthall
Those are a people who have passed away. Theirs is that which they earned, and yours is that which ye earn. And ye will not be asked of what they used to do.

Dr. Ghali
That is a nation (that) has already passed away; it shall have whatever it earned, and you shall have whatever you have earned, and you shall not be questioned about whatever they were doing.

Abdel Haleem
That community passed away. What they earned belongs to them, and what you earn belongs to you: you will not be answerable for their deeds.

Quran 2 Verse 134 Explanation

For those looking for commentary to help with the understanding of Surah Baqarah ayat 134, we’ve provided two Tafseer works below. The first is the tafseer of Abul Ala Maududi, the second is of Ibn Kathir.

Ala-Maududi

(2:134) Now, they were a people who passed away. Theirs is what they have earned, and yours is what you have earned. You shall not be asked concerning what they did.[134]


134. What is being said here is that even though they might be their offspring in terms of blood – relationship they had, in fact, no true relationship with them. What right did they have to pretend to belong to them when they had departed far from their way? For God would not ask people what their forefathers did; it was rather about their own conduct and action that they would be questioned.

Theirs is what they have earned ‘ is a characteristically Qur’anic expression. What we ordinarily characterize as either ‘action’ or ‘doing’ is termed by the Qur’an as ‘earning’. The reason is that each and every human action has its ultimate effect, whether or not it is good, and will have its manifestation in God’s approval or disapproval. It is this ultimate effect which is a man’s earning. Since the Qur’an considers this to be of paramount importance, it characterizes man’s actions as his ‘earning’.

Ibn-Kathir

133. Or were you witnesses when death approached Ya`qub (Jacob) When he said unto his sons, “What will you worship after me” They said, “We shall worship your AIlah (God ـ Allah) the Ilah of your fathers, Ibrahim (Abraham), Isma`il (Ishmael), Ishaq (Isaac), One Ilah, and to Him we submit (in Islam).” 134. That was a nation who has passed away. They shall receive the reward of what they earned and you of what you earn. And you will not be asked of what they used to do.


Ya`qub’s Will and Testament to His Children upon His Death

This Ayah contains Allah’s criticism of the Arab pagans among the offspring of Isma`il as well as the disbelievers among the Children of Israel Jacob the son of Isaac, the son of Ibrahim. When death came to Jacob, he advised his children to worship Allah alone without partners. He said to them,

﴿مَا تَعْبُدُونَ مِن بَعْدِى قَالُواْ نَعْبُدُ إِلَـهَكَ وَإِلَـهَ آبَآئِكَ إِبْرَهِيمَ وَإِسْمَـعِيلَ وَإِسْحَـقَ﴾

(“What will you worship after me” They said, “We shall worship your Ilah (God ـ Allah) the Ilah of your fathers, Ibrahim, Isma`il, Ishaq,”)

Mentioning Isma`il here is a figure of speech, because Isma`il is Jacob’s uncle. An-Nahas said that the Arabs call the uncle a father, as Al-Qurtubi mentioned).

This Ayah is used as evidence that the grandfather is called a father and inherits, rather than the brothers (i.e. when his son dies), as Abu Bakr asserted, according to Al-Bukhari who narrated Abu Bakr’s statement from Ibn `Abbas and Ibn Az-Zubayr. Al-Bukhari then commented that there are no opposing opinions regarding this subject. This is also the opinion of `A’ishah the Mother of the believers, Al-Hasan Al-Basri, Tawus and `Ata’, Malik, Ash-Shaf`i and Ahmad said that the inheritance is divided between the grandfather and the brothers. It was reported that this was also the opinion of `Umar, `Uthman, `Ali, bin Mas`ud, Zayd bin Thabit and several scholars among the Salaf and later generations.

The statement,

﴿إِلَـهًا وَاحِدًا﴾

(One Ilah (God)) means, “We single Him out in divinity and do not associate anything or anyone with Him.”

﴿وَنَحْنُ لَهُ مُسْلِمُونَ﴾

(And to Him we submit), in obedience meaning, obedient and submissiveness. Similarly, Allah said,

﴿وَلَهُ أَسْلَمَ مَن فِى السَّمَـوَتِ وَالاٌّرْضِ طَوْعًا وَكَرْهًا وَإِلَيْهِ يُرْجَعُونَ﴾

(While to Him submitted all creatures in the heavens and the earth, willingly or unwillingly. And to Him shall they all be returned) (3:83).

Indeed, Islam is the religion of all the Prophets, even if their rei﴾spective laws differed. Allah said,

﴿وَمَآ أَرْسَلْنَا مِن قَبْلِكَ مِن رَّسُولٍ إِلاَّ نُوحِى إِلَيْهِ أَنَّهُ لا إِلَـهَ إِلاَّ أَنَاْ فَاعْبُدُونِ ﴾

(And We did not send any Messenger before you (O Muhammad ) ﴿but We revealed to him (saying): La ilaha illa Ana ﴿none has the right to be worshipped but I (Allah)﴾, so worship Me (alone and none else)) (21:25).

There are many other Ayat – and Hadiths – on this subject. For instance, the Prophet said,

«نَحْنُ مَعْشَرَ الْأَنْبِيَاءِ أَوْلَادُ عَلَّاتٍ دِينُنا وَاحِد»

(We, the Prophets, are brothers with different mothers, but the same religion.)

Allah said,

﴿تِلْكَ أُمَّةٌ قَدْ خَلَتْ﴾

(That was a nation who has passed away) meaning, existed before your time,

﴿لَهَا مَا كَسَبَتْ وَلَكُم مَّا كَسَبْتُم﴾

(They shall receive the reward of what they earned and you of what you earn).

This Ayah proclaims, Your relationship to the Prophets or righteous people among your ancestors will not benefit you, unless you perform good deeds that bring about you religious benefit. They have their deeds and you have yours,

﴿وَلاَ تُسْـَلُونَ عَمَّا كَانُوا يَعْمَلُونَ﴾

(And you will not be asked of what they used to do).”

This is why a Hadith proclaims,

«مَنْ بَطَّأَ بِهِ عَمَلُهُ لَمْ يُسْرِعْ بِهِ نَسَبُه»

(Whoever was slowed on account of his deeds will not get any faster on account of his family lineage.)’

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