Surah Al-Imran >> Currently viewing Surah Imran Ayat 118 (3:118)

Surah Al-Imran Ayat 118 in Arabic Text

يَـٰٓأَيُّهَا ٱلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُوا۟ لَا تَتَّخِذُوا۟ بِطَانَةًۭ مِّن دُونِكُمْ لَا يَأْلُونَكُمْ خَبَالًۭا وَدُّوا۟ مَا عَنِتُّمْ قَدْ بَدَتِ ٱلْبَغْضَآءُ مِنْ أَفْوَٰهِهِمْ وَمَا تُخْفِى صُدُورُهُمْ أَكْبَرُ ۚ قَدْ بَيَّنَّا لَكُمُ ٱلْـَٔايَـٰتِ ۖ إِن كُنتُمْ تَعْقِلُونَ
Yaaa ayyuhal lazeena aamanoo laa tattakhizoo bitaanatam min doonikum laa ya’loonakum khabaalanw waddoo maa ‘anittum qad badatil baghdaaa’u min afwaahihim; wa maa tukhfee sudooruhum akbar; qad baiyannaa lakumul Aayaati in kuntum ta’qiloon

English Translation

Here you can read various translations of verse 118

Sahih International
O you who have believed, do not take as intimates those other than yourselves, for they will not spare you [any] ruin. They wish you would have hardship. Hatred has already appeared from their mouths, and what their breasts conceal is greater. We have certainly made clear to you the signs, if you will use reason.

Yusuf Ali
O ye who believe! Take not into your intimacy those outside your ranks: They will not fail to corrupt you. They only desire your ruin: Rank hatred has already appeared from their mouths: What their hearts conceal is far worse. We have made plain to you the Signs, if ye have wisdom.

Abul Ala Maududi
Believers! Do not take for intimate friends those who are not of your kind. They spare no effort to injure you. Indeed they love all that distresses you. Their hatred is clearly manifest in what they say, and what their breasts conceal is even greater. Now We have made Our messages clear to you, if only you can understand (the danger of their intimacy).

Muhsin Khan
O you who believe! Take not as (your) Bitanah (advisors, consultants, protectors, helpers, friends, etc.) those outside your religion (pagans, Jews, Christians, and hypocrites) since they will not fail to do their best to corrupt you. They desire to harm you severely. Hatred has already appeared from their mouths, but what their breasts conceal is far worse. Indeed We have made plain to you the Ayat (proofs, evidences, verses) if you understand.

Pickthall
O ye who believe! Take not for intimates others than your own folk, who would spare no pains to ruin you; they love to hamper you. Hatred is revealed by (the utterance of) their mouths, but that which their breasts hide is greater. We have made plain for you the revelations if ye will understand.

Dr. Ghali
O you who have believed, do not take to yourselves retainers, apart from your (people); they spare nothing to (cause) confusion to you; they would like to (bring you) whatever distresses you. Abhorrence has already been displayed of their mouths, and whatever their breasts conceal is (still) greater. We have already made evident to you the signs, in case you consider.

Abdel Haleem
You who believe, do not take for your intimates such outsiders as spare no effort to ruin you and want to see you suffer: their hatred is evident from their mouths, but what their hearts conceal is far worse. We have made Our revelations clear for you; will you not use your reason?

Quran 3 Verse 118 Explanation

For those looking for commentary to help with the understanding of Surah Imran ayat 118, we’ve provided two Tafseer works below. The first is the tafseer of Abul Ala Maududi, the second is of Ibn Kathir.

Ala-Maududi

(3:118) Believers! Do not take for intimate friends those who are not of your kind. They spare no effort to injure you.[92] Indeed they love all that distresses you. Their hatred is clearly manifest in what they say, and what their breasts conceal is even greater. Now We have made Our messages clear to you, if only you can understand (the danger of their intimacy).


92. The Jews living on the outskirts of Madina had long enjoyed friendly relations with the two tribes of Aws and Khazraj. In the first place this was the result of relations between individuals. Later, they were bound by ties of neighbourliness and allegiance as a result of tribal inter-relationship. Even after the people of Aws and Khazraj embraced Islam, they maintained their old ties with the Jews and continued to treat them with the same warmth and cordiality. However, the hostility of the Jews towards the Arabian Prophet (peace be on him) and towards his mission was far too intense to allow them to maintain a cordial relationship with anyone who had joined the new movement. Outwardly, the Jews maintained the same terms of friendship with the Ansar (Helpers) as before but at heart they had become their sworn enemies. They made the best use of this pretended friendship, and remained constantly on the look-out for opportunities to create schisms and dissensions in the Muslim body-politic, and to draw out the secrets of the Muslims and pass them on to their enemies. Here God warns the Muslims to note this hypocrisy and take the necessary precaution.

Ibn-Kathir

118. O you who believe! Take not as (your) Bitanah (advisors, helpers) those other than your own, since they will not fail to do their best to corrupt you. They desire to harm you severely. Hatred has already appeared from their mouths, but what their breasts conceal is far worse. Indeed We have made plain to you the Ayat if you understand. 119. Lo! You are the ones who love them but they love you not, and you believe in all the Scriptures. And when they meet you, they say, “We believe.” But when they are alone, they bite their Anamil at you in rage. Say: “Perish in your rage. Certainly, Allah knows what is in the breasts (all the secrets). ” 120. If a good befalls you, it grieves them, but if some evil overtakes you, they rejoice at it. But if you remain patient and have Taqwa, not the least harm will their cunning do to you. Surely, Allah surrounds all that they do.


Prohibition of Taking Allies From Disbelievers Who Ridicule Islam

Allah forbids His believing servants from taking the hypocrites as allies, so that the hypocrites do not have the opportunity to expose the secrets of the believers and their plans against their enemies. The hypocrites try their very best to confuse, oppose and harm the believers any way they can, and by using any wicked, evil means at their disposal. They wish the very worst and difficult conditions for the believers. Allah said,

﴿لاَ تَتَّخِذُواْ بِطَانَةً مِّن دُونِكُمْ﴾

(Take not as (your) Bitanah those other than your own) ﴿3:118﴾, in reference to taking followers of other religions as consultants and allies, for advisors of a certain person have access to his most secret affairs. Al-Bukhari and An-Nasa’i recorded that, Abu Sa`id said that the Messenger of Allah said,

«مَا بَعَثَ اللهُ مِنْ نَبِيَ وَلَا اسْتَخْلَفَ مِنْ خَلِيفَةٍ إِلَّا كَانَتْ لَهُ بِطَانَتَانِ: بِطَانَةٌ تَأْمُرُهُ بِالْخَيْرِ وَتَحُضُّهُ عَلَيْهِ، وَبِطَانَةٌ تَأْمُرُهُ بِالسُّوءِ وَتَحُضُّهُ عَلَيْهِ، وَالْمَعْصُومُ مَنْ عَصَمَ الله»

(Allah has not sent any Prophet nor was there any Khalifah but they have two types of allies, one that commands him with righteousness and advises it, and another that commands him with evil and advises him with it. Only those whom Allah gives immunity are immune.)

Ibn Abi Hatim reported that Ibn Abi Ad-Dahqanah said, “`Umar bin Al-Khattab was told, `There is young man here from the people of Hirah (in Iraq, who were Christians) who is a proficient scribe. Why do you not appoint him as a scribe’ `Umar said, `I would then be taking advisors from among the disbelievers.”’ This Ayah and the story about `Umar testify to the fact that Muslims are not allowed to use Ahl Adh-Dhimmah to be scribes in matters that affect the affairs of Muslims and expose their secrets, for they might convey these secrets to combatant disbelievers. This is why Allah said,

﴿لاَ يَأْلُونَكُمْ خَبَالاً وَدُّواْ مَا عَنِتُّمْ﴾

(since they will not fail to do their best to corrupt you. They desire to harm you severely.)

Allah then said,

﴿قَدْ بَدَتِ الْبَغْضَآءُ مِنْ أَفْوَهِهِمْ وَمَا تُخْفِى صُدُورُهُمْ أَكْبَرُ﴾

(Hatred has already appeared from their mouths, but what their breasts conceal is far worse.) meaning, enmity appears on their faces and in what they sometimes utter, as well as, the enmity they have against Islam and its people in their hearts. Since this fact is apparent to every person who has sound comprehension, therefore,

﴿قَدْ بَيّنَّا لَكُمُ الاٌّيَـتِ إِنْ كُنتُمْ تَعْقِلُونَ﴾

(Indeed We have made plain to you the Ayat if you understand.)

Allah said next,

﴿هَآأَنتُمْ أُوْلاءِ تُحِبُّونَهُمْ وَلاَ يُحِبُّونَكُمْ﴾

(O! You are the ones who love them but they love you not), meaning, O believers! You like the hypocrites because you think they are believers, for they pretend to be so, but they do not like you publicly or secretly.

﴿وَتُؤْمِنُونَ بِالْكِتَـبِ كُلِّهِ﴾

(And you believe in all the Scriptures) meaning, you have no doubt in any part of Allah’s Book, while the hypocrites have deep doubts, confusion and reservations about it.

Muhammad bin Ishaq reported that Ibn `Abbas said that,

﴿وَتُؤْمِنُونَ بِالْكِتَـبِ كُلِّهِ﴾

(and you believe in all the Scriptures,) means, you believe in your Book, their Book, and the previous Books, while the hypocrites disbelieve in your Book, and this is why they deserve that you dislike them instead of them disliking you. Ibn Jarir collected this statement.

﴿وَإِذَا لَقُوكُمْ قَالُواْ ءَامَنَّا وَإِذَا خَلَوْاْ عَضُّواْ عَلَيْكُمُ الاٌّنَامِلَ مِنَ الْغَيْظِ﴾

(And when they meet you, they say, “We believe.” But when they are alone, they bite their Anamil at you in rage.)

The word Anamil, means the tips of the fingers, as Qatadah stated. This is the behavior of the hypocrites who pretend to be believers and kind when they are with the believers, all the while concealing the opposite in their hearts in every respect. This is the exact situation that Allah describes,

﴿وَإِذَا خَلَوْاْ عَضُّواْ عَلَيْكُمُ الاٌّنَامِلَ مِنَ الْغَيْظِ﴾

(But when they are alone, they bite their Anamil at you in rage) and rage is extreme anger and fury. Allah said to them,

﴿قُلْ مُوتُواْ بِغَيْظِكُمْ إِنَّ اللَّهَ عَلِيمٌ بِذَاتِ الصُّدُورِ﴾

(Say: “Perish in your rage. Certainly, Allah knows what is in the breasts (all the secrets).”) for no matter how much you envy the believers and feel rage towards them, know that Allah shall perfect His favor on His believing servants, complete His religion, raise high His Word and give dominance to His religion. Therefore, O hypocrites, die in rage,

﴿إِنَّ اللَّهَ عَلِيمٌ بِذَاتِ الصُّدُورِ﴾

(Allah knows what is in the breasts.)

Allah has perfect knowledge of what you conceal in your hearts and chests and in the rage, envy and hatred you have against the believers. Allah will punish you for all this in this life, and they will have the good that you dislike for them. In the Hereafter, you will suffer severe torment in the Fire where you will remain for eternity.

Thereafter, Allah said,

﴿إِن تَمْسَسْكُمْ حَسَنَةٌ تَسُؤْهُمْ وَإِن تُصِبْكُمْ سَيِّئَةٌ يَفْرَحُواْ بِهَا﴾

(If a good befalls you, it grieves them, but if some evil overtakes you, they rejoice at it) ﴿3:120﴾. This only emphasizes the severity of the enmity that the hypocrites feel against the believers. If the believers enjoy fertile years, victories, support and their numbers and following increase, the hypocrites become displeased. When the Muslims suffer a drought or their enemies gain the upper hand against them, by Allah’s decree, just as occurred during the battle of Uhud, the hypocrites become pleased. Allah said to His believing servants,

﴿وَإِن تَصْبِرُواْ وَتَتَّقُواْ لاَ يَضُرُّكُمْ كَيْدُهُمْ شَيْئاً﴾

(But if you remain patient and have Taqwa, not the least harm will their cunning do to you.)

Allah directs the believers to safety from the wickedness of evil people and the plots of the sinners, by recommending them to revert to patience and by having fear of Allah and trusting Him. Allah encompasses the enemies of the believers, all the while the believers have no power or strength except from Him. Whatever Allah wills, occurs, and whatever He does not will, does not occur. Nothing happens in His Kingdom except with His decision and according to His decrees. Verily, whoever relies on Allah, Allah shall suffice for him.

Allah then mentions the story of Uhud, the defeat that He tested the believers with, His distinguishing the believers from the hypocrites and their patience.

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