Surah Al-Baqarah >> Currently viewing Surah Baqarah Ayat 17 (2:17)

Surah Baqarah Ayat 17 in Arabic Text

مَثَلُهُمْ كَمَثَلِ ٱلَّذِى ٱسْتَوْقَدَ نَارًۭا فَلَمَّآ أَضَآءَتْ مَا حَوْلَهُۥ ذَهَبَ ٱللَّهُ بِنُورِهِمْ وَتَرَكَهُمْ فِى ظُلُمَـٰتٍۢ لَّا يُبْصِرُونَ
Masaluhum kamasalillazis tawqada naaran falammaaa adaaa’at maa hawlahoo zahabal laahu binoorihim wa tarakahum fee zulumaatil laa yubsiroon

English Translation

Here you can read various translations of verse 17

Sahih International
Their example is that of one who kindled a fire, but when it illuminated what was around him, Allah took away their light and left them in darkness [so] they could not see.

Yusuf Ali
“Their similitude is that of a man who kindled a fire; when it lighted all around him, Allah took away their light and left them in utter darkness. So they could not see.

Abul Ala Maududi
Their condition may be described in a parable: a man kindled a fire and when it illuminated all around him, Allah took away the light from their eyes and left them in utter darkness, where they could not see anything.

Muhsin Khan
Their likeness is as the likeness of one who kindled a fire; then, when it lighted all around him, Allah took away their light and left them in darkness. (So) they could not see.

Pickthall
Their likeness is as the likeness of one who kindleth fire, and when it sheddeth its light around him Allah taketh away their light and leaveth them in darkness, where they cannot see,

Dr. Ghali
The likeness of them is as the likeness of one who set to kindle a fire; so, as soon as it illuminated whatever is around him, Allah went away with their light, (i.e., took away their light)and left them in darkness (es) (where) they do not behold (anything).

Abdel Haleem
They are like people who [labour to] kindle a fire: when it lights up everything around them, God takes away all their light, leaving them in utter darkness, unable to see-

Quran 2 Verse 17 Explanation

For those looking for commentary to help with the understanding of Surah Baqarah ayat 17, we’ve provided two Tafseer works below. The first is the tafseer of Abul Ala Maududi, the second is of Ibn Kathir.

Ala-Maududi

(2:17) They are like him who kindled a fire, and when it lit up all around him, Allah took away the light (of their perception) and left them in utter darkness where they can see nothing.


There is no commentary by Abul Maududi available for this verse.

Ibn-Kathir

17. Their likeness is as the likeness of one who kindled a fire; then, when it illuminated all around him, Allah removed their light and left them in darkness. (So) they could not see. 18. They are deaf, dumb, and blind, so they return not (to the right path).


The Example of the Hypocrites

Allah likened the hypocrites when they bought deviation with guidance, thus acquiring utter blindness, to the example of a person who started a fire. When the fire was lit, and illumnitated the surrounding area, the person benefited from it and felt safe. Then the fire was suddenly extinguished. Therefore, total darkness covered this person, and he became unable to see anything or find his way out of it. Further, this person could not hear or speak and became so blind that even if there were light, he would not be able to see. This is why he cannot return to the state that he was in before this happened to him. Such is the case with the hypocrites who preferred misguidance over guidance, deviation over righteousness. This parable indicates that the hypocrites first believed, then disbelieved, just as Allah stated in other parts of the Qur’an.

Allah’s statement,

﴿ذَهَبَ اللَّهُ بِنُورِهِمْ﴾

(Allah removed their light) means, Allah removed what benefits them, and this is the light, and He left them with what harms them, that is, the darkness and smoke. Allah said,

﴿وَتَرَكَهُمْ فِي ظُلُمَـتٍ﴾

(And left them in darkness), that is their doubts, disbelief and hypocrisy.

﴿لاَّ يُبْصِرُونَ﴾

((So) they could not see) meaning, they are unable to find the correct path or find its direction. In addition, they are,

﴿صُمٌّ﴾

(deaf) and thus cannot hear the guidance,

﴿بِكُمْ﴾

(dumb) and cannot utter the words that might benefit them,

﴿عَمًى﴾

(and blind) in total darkness and deviation. Similarly, Allah said,

﴿فَإِنَّهَا لاَ تَعْمَى الاٌّبْصَـرُ وَلَـكِن تَعْمَى الْقُلُوبُ الَّتِى فِى الصُّدُورِ﴾

(Verily, it is not the eyes that grow blind, but it is the hearts which are in the breasts that grow blind) (22:46) and this why they cannot get back to the state of guidance that they were in, since they sold it for misguidance.

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