Surah Qaf >> Currently viewing Surah Qaf Ayat 18 (50:18)

Surah Qaf Ayat 18 in Arabic Text

مَّا يَلْفِظُ مِن قَوْلٍ إِلَّا لَدَيْهِ رَقِيبٌ عَتِيدٌۭ
Maa yalfizu min qawlin illaa ladaihi raqeebun ‘ateed

English Translation

Here you can read various translations of verse 18

Sahih International
Man does not utter any word except that with him is an observer prepared [to record].

Yusuf Ali
Not a word does he utter but there is a sentinel by him, ready (to note it).

Abul Ala Maududi
He utters not a word, but there is a vigilant watcher at hand.

Muhsin Khan
Not a word does he (or she) utter, but there is a watcher by him ready (to record it).

Pickthall
He uttereth no word but there is with him an observer ready.

Dr. Ghali
In no way does he utter a saying except that close to him is a (Guardian) constantly ready.

Abdel Haleem
he does not utter a single word without an ever-present watcher.

Quran 50 Verse 18 Explanation

For those looking for commentary to help with the understanding of Surah Qaf ayat 18, we’ve provided two Tafseer works below. The first is the tafseer of Abul Ala Maududi, the second is of Ibn Kathir.

Ala-Maududi

(50:18) He utters not a word, but there is a vigilant watcher at hand.[21]


21. That is, on the one hand, We directly know man’s actions and movements, even his hidden thoughts; on the other hand, every man has two angels appointed over him, who are recording whatever he does and says; none of his actions or words is left unrecorded. This means that when man is produced in the court of Allah, Allah at that time Himself will also be knowing what each person has done in the world. Besides, there will also be two witnesses who will produce documentary evidence of the person’s actions and deeds. As to what will be the nature of this documentary evidence, it is difficult for us to have a precise concept of it. But from the facts that we are witnessing today, it seems certain that the voices and pictures and marks of man’s actions and movements are being preserved and imprinted on every particle of the environment in which he lives and works, and each one of these can be reproduced in exactly the same form and voice so as to leave no difference whatsoever between the original and its copy. Man is doing this on a very limited scale with the help of his inventions, but the angels of God neither stand in need of these machines nor are bound by any limitation. Man’s own body and everything around it is their tape and their film upon which they can record every voice and every image along with its minutest and most delicate detail precisely and exactly, and can make man hear, on the Day of Resurrection, with his own ears, in his own voice, those very things which he talked in the world, and can make him see, with his own eyes, the pictures of all his misdeeds, whose genuineness he would not possibly be able to deny.

Here, one should also understand that in the court of the Hereafter, Allah will not punish anybody only on the basis of His own knowledge, but will punish him after fulfilling all the requirements of justice. That is why an exhaustive record is being prepared of every person’s words and deeds in the world so that a complete proof with undeniable evidence becomes available of everyone’s life work and activity.

Ibn-Kathir

The tafsir of Surah Qaf verse 18 by Ibn Kathir is unavailable here.
Please refer to Surah Qaf ayat 16 which provides the complete commentary from verse 16 through 22.

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