Surah Al-Imran >> Currently viewing Surah Imran Ayat 78 (3:78)

Surah Al-Imran Ayat 78 in Arabic Text

وَإِنَّ مِنْهُمْ لَفَرِيقًۭا يَلْوُۥنَ أَلْسِنَتَهُم بِٱلْكِتَـٰبِ لِتَحْسَبُوهُ مِنَ ٱلْكِتَـٰبِ وَمَا هُوَ مِنَ ٱلْكِتَـٰبِ وَيَقُولُونَ هُوَ مِنْ عِندِ ٱللَّهِ وَمَا هُوَ مِنْ عِندِ ٱللَّهِ وَيَقُولُونَ عَلَى ٱللَّهِ ٱلْكَذِبَ وَهُمْ يَعْلَمُونَ
Wa inna minhum lafaree qany yalwoona alsinatahum bil Kitaabi litahsaboohu minal Kitaab, wa maa huwa minal Kitaabi wa yaqooloona huwa min ‘indillaahi wa maa huwa min ‘indillaahi wa yaqooloona ‘alal laahil kaziba wa hum ya’lamoon

English Translation

Here you can read various translations of verse 78

Sahih International
And indeed, there is among them a party who alter the Scripture with their tongues so you may think it is from the Scripture, but it is not from the Scripture. And they say, “This is from Allah,” but it is not from Allah. And they speak untruth about Allah while they know.

Yusuf Ali
There is among them a section who distort the Book with their tongues: (As they read) you would think it is a part of the Book, but it is no part of the Book; and they say, “That is from Allah,” but it is not from Allah: It is they who tell a lie against Allah, and (well) they know it!

Abul Ala Maududi
And there is a party among them who twist their tongues while reciting the Book to make you think that it is part of the Book when in fact it is not. They say: ‘It is from Allah’, when in fact it is not from Allah. They falsely fix a lie upon Allah, and do so wittingly.

Muhsin Khan
And verily, among them is a party who distort the Book with their tongues (as they read), so that you may think it is from the Book, but it is not from the Book, and they say: “This is from Allah,” but it is not from Allah; and they speak a lie against Allah while they know it.

Pickthall
And lo! there is a party of them who distort the Scripture with their tongues, that ye may think that what they say is from the Scripture, when it is not from the Scripture. And they say: It is from Allah, when it is not from Allah; and they speak a lie concerning Allah knowingly.

Dr. Ghali
And surely (there is) indeed a group of them who twist their tongues with the Book that you may reckon it a (part) of the Book, and in no way is it a (part) of the Book, And they say, “It is from the Providence of Allah, ” and in no way is it from the Providence of Allah; and they say lies against Allah, and they know (that).

Abdel Haleem
There are some who twist the Scripture with their tongues to make you [people] think that what they say is part of the Scripture when it is not; they say it is from God when it is not; they attribute lies to God and they know it.

Quran 3 Verse 78 Explanation

For those looking for commentary to help with the understanding of Surah Imran ayat 78, we’ve provided two Tafseer works below. The first is the tafseer of Abul Ala Maududi, the second is of Ibn Kathir.

Ala-Maududi

(3:78) And there is a party among them who twist their tongues while reciting the Book to make you think that it is part of the Book when in fact it is not.[66] They say: ‘It is from Allah’, when in fact it is not from Allah. They falsely fix a lie upon Allah, and do so wittingly.


66. This could mean that they either distort the meaning of the Scriptures or twist the words of the text in order to misinterpret it. Its real meaning, however, seems to be that when, during their reading of the Scriptures, they encounter any word or sentence which goes against their interests, and the beliefs and notions which they cherish, they distort the meaning of it by deliberately twisting their tongues. Instances of such tongue-twisting are not altogether wanting among those who, despite their belief in the Qur’an, share some of these people’s characteristics. For instance, some people who stress the superhuman character of the Prophet (peace be on him) misread the following verse: innama ana basharun mithlukum (Qur’an 18: 110) (I am nothing but a human being like you), replacing innama by inna ma ana and translate it: ‘(O Prophet), say to them: “I am not a human being like you.”

Ibn-Kathir

78. And verily, among them is a party who distort the Book with their tongues, so that you may think it is from the Book, but it is not from the Book, and they say: This is from Alla0h, but it is not from Allah؛ and they speak a lie against Alla0h while they know it.


The Jews Alter Allah’s Words

Allah states that some Jews, may Allah’s curses descend on them, distort Allah’s Words with their tongues, change them from their appropriate places, and alter their intended meanings. They do this to deceive the ignorant people by making it appear that their words are in the Book of Allah. They attribute their own lies to Allah, even though they know that they have lied and invented falsehood. Therefore, Allah said,

﴿وَيَقُولُونَ عَلَى اللَّهِ الْكَذِبَ وَهُمْ يَعْلَمُونَ﴾

(and they speak a lie against Allah while they know it.)

Mujahid, Ash-Sha`bi, Al-Hasan, Qatadah and Ar-Rabi` bin Anas said that,

﴿يَلْوُونَ أَلْسِنَتَهُم بِالْكِتَـبِ﴾

(who distort the Book with their tongues,) means, “They alter them (Allah’s Words).”

Al-Bukhari reported that Ibn `Abbas said that the Ayah means they alter and add although none among Allah’s creation can remove the Words of Allah from His Books, they alter and distort their apparent meanings. Wahb bin Munabbih said, “The Tawrah and the Injil remain as Allah revealed them, and no letter in them was removed. However, the people misguide others by addition and false interpretation, relying on books that they wrote themselves. Then,

﴿وَيَقُولُونَ هُوَ مِنْ عِندِ اللَّهِ وَمَا هُوَ مِنْ عِندِ اللَّهِ﴾

(they say: “This is from Allah,” but it is not from Allah;)

As for Allah’s Books, they are still preserved and cannot be changed.” Ibn Abi Hatim recorded this statement. However, if Wahb meant the books that are currently in the hands of the People of the Book, then we should state that there is no doubt that they altered, distorted, added to and deleted from them. For instance, the Arabic versions of these books contain tremendous error, many additions and deletions and enormous misinterpretation. Those who rendered these translations have incorrect comprehension in most, rather, all of these translations. If Wahb meant the Books of Allah that He has with Him, then indeed, these Books are preserved and were never changed.

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