Surah Ghafir Ayat 4 in Arabic Text
Here you can read various translations of verse 4
No one disputes concerning the signs of Allah except those who disbelieve, so be not deceived by their [uninhibited] movement throughout the land.
None can dispute about the Signs of Allah but the Unbelievers. Let not, then, their strutting about through the land deceive thee!
None but the unbelievers dispute regarding the Signs of Allah. So let not their strutting about in the land delude you.
None disputes in the Ayat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) of Allah but those who disbelieve. So let not their ability of going about here and there through the land (for their purposes) deceive you [O Muhammad SAW, their ultimate end will be the Fire of Hell]!
None argue concerning the revelations of Allah save those who disbelieve, so let not their turn of fortune in the land deceive thee (O Muhammad).
In no way does anyone dispute concerning the signs of Allah except the ones who disbelieve; so do not let their moving about in the lands delude you.
It is only the disbelievers who dispute God’s revelations. [Prophet], do not be dazzled by their movements back and forth across the land.
Quran 40 Verse 4 Explanation
For those looking for commentary to help with the understanding of Surah Ghafir ayat 4, we’ve provided two Tafseer works below. The first is the tafseer of Abul Ala Maududi, the second is of Ibn Kathir.
(40:4) None but the unbelievers dispute regarding the Signs of Allah. So let not their strutting about in the land delude you.
3. Here, the word kufr has been used in two meanings: for ingratitude and for denial of the truth. According to the first meaning, the sentence would mean: As against the revelations of Allah this sort of behavior is adopted only by those who have forgotten His bounties and who have even lost the feeling that it is by His bounty that they are flourishing. According to the second, it would mean: This sort of behavior is adopted only by those who have turned away from the truth and are determined not to accept it. From the context it becomes obvious that here the disbeliever does not imply every non-Muslim, for a non- Muslim who disputes a point in good faith for the sake of understanding Islam, and who tries to grasp thoroughly those things which he fends hard to follow, although a non Muslim technically, yet that which has been condemned in this verse does not apply to him.
4. There is a gap between the previous sentence and this, which has been left for the listener to fill. From the context and style it becomes evident that those who adopt the attitude of disputation as against the revelations of Allah Almighty, can never escape the punishment. Therefore, they shall inevitably meet their doom. Now, if one sees that those people, even after adopting such an attitude, are strutting about, their business is flourishing, their governments functioning in a grand style and they are enjoying the good things of life, one should not be misled into thinking that they have escaped Allah’s punishment, or that war against Allah’s revelations is a sport which can be adopted as a pastime and its evil consequences warded off easily. This, in fact, is a respite which they have been granted by Allah. Those who abuse this respite for doing more mischief are indeed preparing for an ignominious end.
5. That is, the torment that seized them in the world was not their final punishment, but Allah has also decreed that they shall go to Hell. Another meaning can be: Just as the nations of the past have gone to their doom, so will those people also who are committing disbelief go to Hell, according to the fixed decree of Allah.
4. None disputes in the Ayat of Allah but those who disbelieve. So let not their ability of going about here and there through the land (for their purposes) deceive you! 5. The people of Nuh and the groups after them denied before these; and every nation plotted against their Messenger to seize him, and disputed by means of falsehood to refute therewith the truth. So I seized them, and how was My punishment! 6. Thus has the Word of your Lord been justified against those who disbelieved, that they will be the dwellers of the Fire.
(but those who disbelieve), i.e., those who reject the signs of Allah and His proof and evidence.
(So let not their ability of going about here and there through the land deceive you!) means, their wealth and luxurious life. This is like the Ayah:
(Let not the free disposal (and affluence) of the disbelievers throughout the land deceive you. A brief enjoyment; then, their ultimate abode is Hell; and worst indeed is that place for rest.) (3:196-197)
(We let them enjoy for a little while, then in the end We shall oblige them to (enter) a great torment.) (31:24). Then Allah consoles His Prophet Muhammad for the rejection of his people. He tells him that he has an example in the Prophets who came before him, may the blessings and peace of Allah be upon them all, for their nations disbelieved them and opposed them, and only a few believed in them.
(The people of Nuh denied before these;) Nuh was the first Messenger whom Allah sent to denounce and forbid idol worship.
(and the groups after them) means, from every nation.
(and every (disbelieving) nation plotted against their Messenger to seize him,) means, they wanted to kill him by any means possible, and some of them did kill their Messenger.
(and disputed by means of falsehood to refute therewith the truth.) means, they came up with specious arguments with which to dispute the truth which was so plain and clear.
(So I seized them) means, `I destroyed them, because of the sins they committed.’
(and how was My punishment!) means, `how have you heard that My punishment and vengeance was so severe and painful.’ Qatadah said, “It was terrible, by Allah.”
(Thus has the Word of your Lord been justified against those who disbelieved, that they will be the dwellers of the Fire.) means, `just as the Word of punishment was justified against those of the past nations who disbelieved, so too is it justified against these disbelievers who have rejected you and gone against you, O Muhammad, and it is even more justified against them, because if they have disbelieved in you, there is no certainty that they will believe in any other Prophet.’ And Allah knows best.
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