Surah Al-Isra >> Currently viewing Surah Al-Isra Ayat 54 (17:54)

Surah Al-Isra Ayat 54 in Arabic Text

رَّبُّكُمْ أَعْلَمُ بِكُمْ ۖ إِن يَشَأْ يَرْحَمْكُمْ أَوْ إِن يَشَأْ يُعَذِّبْكُمْ ۚ وَمَآ أَرْسَلْنَـٰكَ عَلَيْهِمْ وَكِيلًۭا
Rabbukum a’lamu bikum iny yasha’ yarhamkum aw iny yasha’ yu’azzibkum; wa maaa arsalnaaka ‘alaihim wakeelaa

English Translation

Here you can read various translations of verse 54

Sahih International
Your Lord is most knowing of you. If He wills, He will have mercy upon you; or if He wills, He will punish you. And We have not sent you, [O Muhammad], over them as a manager.

Yusuf Ali
It is your Lord that knoweth you best: If He please, He granteth you mercy, or if He please, punishment: We have not sent thee to be a disposer of their affairs for them.

Abul Ala Maududi
Your Lord knows you best. He will have mercy on you if He wills and chastise you if He wills. We have not sent you, (O Muhammad), as an overseer over them.

Muhsin Khan
Your Lord knows you best, if He will, He will have mercy on you, or if He will, He will punish you. And We have not sent you (O Muhammad SAW) as a guardian over them.

Pickthall
Your Lord is Best Aware of you. If He will, He will have mercy on you, or if He will, He will punish you. We have not sent thee (O Muhammad) as a warden over them.

Dr. Ghali
Your Lord knows you best; in case He (so) decides, He will have mercy on you, or, in case He (so) decides, He will torment you. And in no way have We sent you a constant trustee over them.

Abdel Haleem
Your Lord has the most knowledge about all of you: if He pleases He will have mercy on you, and if He pleases He will punish you. [Prophet], We did not send you to take charge of them.

Quran 17 Verse 54 Explanation

For those looking for commentary to help with the understanding of Surah Al-Isra ayat 54, we’ve provided two Tafseer works below. The first is the tafseer of Abul Ala Maududi, the second is of Ibn Kathir.

Ala-Maududi

(17:54) Your Lord knows you best. He will have mercy on you if He wills and chastise you if He wills.[60] We have not sent you, (O Muhammad), as an overseer over them.[61]


60. This is to warn the believers to refrain from making claims of piety so as to assign Paradise to themselves and Hell to their opponents. It is Allah alone Who has the power to decide these things because He is fully aware of the known and secret and the present and future things about all human beings. It is He Who will decide whether to show mercy to anyone or give chastisement. However, a man may say in the light of the divine Book that a certain kind of human beings deserve mercy and another kind of people incur chastisement but none has any right to say specifically that a particular man will be given chastisement and another will get salvation.

61. This is to declare that a Prophet is sent to convey the message and not to decide whether a person will receive mercy or get chastisement. It does not, however, mean that, God forbid, the Prophet (peace be upon him) himself did such a thing and Allah had to warn him. In fact, this is to warn the Muslims that when the Prophet himself is not in a position as to decide the fates of the people, they should never think of such a thing as to assign Paradise and Hell to anyone.

Ibn-Kathir

54. Lord knows you best; if He wills, He will have mercy on you, or if He wills, He will punish you. And We have not sent you as a guardian over them. 55. And your Lord knows best all who are in the heavens and the earth. And indeed, We have preferred some of the Prophets above others, and to Dawud We gave the Zabur.) Allah says:


﴿رَّبُّكُمْ أَعْلَمُ بِكُمْ﴾

(Your Lord knows you best;) O mankind, meaning, He knows best who among you deserves to be guided and who does not deserve to be guided.

﴿إِن يَشَأْ يَرْحَمْكُمْ﴾

(if He wills, He will have mercy on you,) by helping you to obey Him and turn to Him.

﴿أَوْ إِن يَشَأْ يُعَذِّبْكُمْ وَمَآ أَرْسَلْنَـكَ﴾

(or if He wills, He will punish you. And We have not sent you) – O Muhammad –

﴿عَلَيْهِمْ وَكِيلاً﴾

(as a guardian over them.) meaning, `We have sent you as a warner, so whoever obeys you, will enter Paradise and whoever disobeys you, will enter Hell.’

﴿وَرَبُّكَ أَعْلَمُ بِمَنْ فِى السَّمَـوَتِ وَالاٌّرْضِ﴾

(And your Lord knows best all who are in the heavens and the earth.) meaning, their status or level of obedience or disobedience.

The Preference of some Prophets above Others

﴿وَلَقَدْ فَضَّلْنَا بَعْضَ النَّبِيِّينَ عَلَى بَعْضٍ﴾

(And indeed, We have preferred some of the Prophets above others.) As Allah says:

﴿تِلْكَ الرُّسُلُ فَضَّلْنَا بَعْضَهُمْ عَلَى بَعْضٍ مِّنْهُمْ مَّن كَلَّمَ اللَّهُ وَرَفَعَ بَعْضَهُمْ دَرَجَـتٍ﴾

(Those Messengers! We preferred some of them to others; to some of them Allah spoke (directly); others He raised to degrees (of honor.)) ﴿2:253﴾ This does not contradict the report in the Two Sahihs which says that the Messenger of Allah said:

«لَا تُفَضِّلُوا بَيْنَ الْأَنْبِيَاء»

(Don’t give superiority to any Prophet among (Allah’s) Prophets.) What is meant in this Hadith is giving a superiority based on whims and fanaticism or sectarian feelings, not on the basis of evidence. If there is solid evidence, we have to follow it. There is no dispute that the Messengers are better than the rest of the Prophets, and that the mighty Messengers of Great Resolve are the best of all. They are the five mentioned in two Ayat of the Qur’an, in Surat Al-Ahzab:

﴿وَإِذْ أَخَذْنَا مِنَ النَّبِيِّيْنَ مِيثَاقَهُمْ وَمِنْكَ وَمِن نُّوحٍ وَإِبْرَهِيمَ وَمُوسَى وَعِيسَى ابْنِ مَرْيَمَ﴾

(And (remember) when We took from the Prophets their covenant, and from you and from Nuh, Ibrahim, Musa and `Isa son of Maryam.) ﴿33:7﴾ and in Surat Ash-Shura:

﴿شَرَعَ لَكُم مِّنَ الِدِينِ مَا وَصَّى بِهِ نُوحاً وَالَّذِى أَوْحَيْنَآ إِلَيْكَ وَمَا وَصَّيْنَا بِهِ إِبْرَاهِيمَ وَمُوسَى وَعِيسَى أَنْ أَقِيمُواْ الدِّينَ وَلاَ تَتَفَرَّقُواْ فِيهِ﴾

(He has ordained for you the same religion which He ordained for Nuh, and that which We have revealed to you, and that which We ordained for Ibrahim, Musa and `Isa saying you should establish religion and make no divisions in it.) ﴿42:13﴾ There is no dispute that Muhammad is the best of them, then Ibrahim, then Musa, then `Isa (peace be upon them all), according to the best-known view. We have discussed the evidence for this in detail elsewhere, and Allah is the source of help. Allah’s saying,

﴿وَءَاتَيْنَا دَاوُودَ زَبُوراً﴾

(and to Dawud We gave the Zabur.) is an indication of his virtue and honor. Al-Bukhari recorded from Abu Hurayrah that the Prophet said:

«خُفِّفَ عَلَى دَاوُدَ الْقُرْآنُ، فَكَانَ يَأْمُرُ بِدَوَابِّهِ فَتُسْرَجُ، فَكَانَ يَقْرَؤُهُ قَبْلَ أَنْ يَفْرُغ»

(The Qur’an (i.e. revea- led Scripture of Zabur) was made easy for Dawud, so he would call for his mounts to be saddled, and he would finish reciting it (i.e., the Zabur) be- fore the job was done.)

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