Surah Saba >> Currently viewing Surah Saba Ayat 18 (34:18)

Surah Saba Ayat 18 in Arabic Text

وَجَعَلْنَا بَيْنَهُمْ وَبَيْنَ ٱلْقُرَى ٱلَّتِى بَـٰرَكْنَا فِيهَا قُرًۭى ظَـٰهِرَةًۭ وَقَدَّرْنَا فِيهَا ٱلسَّيْرَ ۖ سِيرُوا۟ فِيهَا لَيَالِىَ وَأَيَّامًا ءَامِنِينَ
Wa ja’alnaa bainahum wa bainal qural latee baaraknaa feehaa quran zaahiratanw wa qaddarnaa feehas sayr; seeroo feehaa la yaaliya wa aiyaaman aamineen

English Translation

Here you can read various translations of verse 18

Sahih International
And We placed between them and the cities which We had blessed [many] visible cities. And We determined between them the [distances of] journey, [saying], “Travel between them by night or day in safety.”

Yusuf Ali
Between them and the Cities on which We had poured our blessings, We had placed Cities in prominent positions, and between them We had appointed stages of journey in due proportion: “Travel therein, secure, by night and by day.”

Abul Ala Maududi
We placed other prominent towns between them, the towns that We had blessed and had set well-measured stages between them. Move back and forth between them, night and day, in perfect security.

Muhsin Khan
And We placed between them and the towns which We had blessed, towns easy to be seen, and We made the stages (of journey) between them easy (saying): “Travel in them safely both by night and day.”

Pickthall
And We set, between them and the towns which We had blessed, towns easy to be seen, and We made the stage between them easy, (saying): Travel in them safely both by night and day.

Dr. Ghali
And We made, between them and the towns which We have blessed, towns apparent, and We well determined traveling between them: “Travel among them nights and days secure.”

Abdel Haleem
Also, We had placed, between them and the towns We had blessed, other towns within sight of one another to which they could travel easily- ‘ Travel safely in this land by night and by day’-

Quran 34 Verse 18 Explanation

For those looking for commentary to help with the understanding of Surah Saba 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

(34:18) We placed other prominent towns between them, the towns that We had blessed and had set well-measured stages between them.[31] Move back and forth between them, night and day, in perfect security.


31. “Towns which We had blessed”: The lands of Syria and Palestine, which have been generally mentioned in the Quran by this title. For instance, in (Surah Al-Aaraf, Atyat 137), (Surah Bani-Israil, Ayat 1), (Surah Al-Anbiya, Ayats 71, 81).

“Visible towns”: Habitations situated on the highway and not inside the country. It may also mean that the habitations were not very far apart but contiguous so that as the outlying areas of one habitation came to an end those of the other started coming into view.

 “And We made the stages (of journey) between them easy” implies that from the Yaman to the borders of Syria the whole journey passed through inhabited lands, and the distances between one station and another were known and determined. That makes the distinction between the journey through inhabited land and the journey through uninhabited desert area. In the desert the traveler continues to travel as long as he wills and halts when tired. Contrary to this, in settled areas as the distance between one habitation and the other is well known, the traveler can plan beforehand when he would break his journey, where he would have his midday rest and when he would stay for the night.

Ibn-Kathir

18. And We placed, between them and the towns which We had blessed, towns easy to be seen, and We made the stages (of journey) between them easy (saying): “Travel in them safely both by night and day.” 19. But they said: “Our Lord! Make the stages between our journey longer,” and they wronged themselves; so We made them as tales (in the land), and We dispersed them all totally. Verily, in this are indeed signs for every steadfast, grateful (person).


The Trade of Saba’ and Their Destruction

Allah tells us about the blessings which the people of Saba’ enjoyed, and the luxuries and plentiful provision which was theirs in their land, with its secure dwellings and towns which were joined to one another, with many trees, crops and fruits. When they traveled, they had no need to carry provisions or water with them; wherever they stopped, they would find water and fruits, so they could take their noontime rest in one town, and stay overnight in another, according to their needs on their journey. Allah says:

﴿وَجَعَلْنَا بَيْنَهُمْ وَبَيْنَ الْقُرَى الَّتِى بَارَكْنَا فِيهَا﴾

(And We placed, between them and the towns which We had blessed,) Mujahid, Al-Hasan, Sa`id bin Jubayr and Malik, who narrated it from Zayd bin Aslam, and Qatadah, Ad-Dahhak, As-Suddi, Ibn Zayd and others — all said that this means the towns of Syria. It means they used to travel from Yemen to Syria via towns easy to be seen and connected to one another. Al-`Awfi reported that Ibn `Abbas said, “`The towns which We had blessed by putting Jerusalem among them.”

﴿قُرًى ظَـهِرَةً﴾

towns easy to be seen, meaning, clear and visible, known to travelers, so they could take their noontime rest in one town and stay overnight in another. Alla0h says:

﴿وَقَدَّرْنَا فِيهَا السَّيْرَ﴾

(and We made the stages (of journey) between them easy) meaning, `We made it in a way that met the needs of the travelers.’

﴿سِيرُواْ فِيهَا لَيَالِىَ وَأَيَّاماً ءَامِنِينَ﴾

(Travel in them safely both by night and day.) means, those who travel in them will be safe both by night and by day.

﴿فَقَالُواْ رَبَّنَا بَـعِدْ بَيْنَ أَسْفَارِنَا وَظَلَمُواْ أَنفُسَهُمْ﴾

(But they said: “Our Lord! Make the stages between our journey longer,” and they wronged themselves;) They failed to appreciate this blessing, as Ibn `Abbas, Mujahid, Al-Hasan and others said: “They wanted to travel long distances through empty wilderness where they would need to carry provisions with them and would have to travel through intense heat in a state of fear.”

﴿فَجَعَلْنَـهُمْ أَحَادِيثَ وَمَزَّقْنَـهُمْ كُلَّ مُمَزَّقٍ﴾

(so We made them as tales (in the land), and We dispersed them all totally.) means, `We made them something for people to talk about when they converse in the evening, how Allah plotted against them and dispersed them after they had been together living a life of luxury, and they were scattered here and there throughout the land.’ So, the Arabs say of a people when they are dispersed, “They have been scattered like Saba’,” in all directions.

﴿إِنَّ فِى ذلِكَ لآيَـتٍ لِّكُلِّ صَبَّارٍ شَكُورٍ﴾

(Verily, in this are indeed signs for every steadfast, grateful.) In the punishment which these people suffered, the way in which their blessings and good health were turned into vengeance for their disbelief and sins, is a lesson and an indication for every person who is steadfast in the face of adversity and grateful for blessings. Imam Ahmad recorded that Sa`d bin Abi Waqqas, may Allah be pleased with him, said, “The Messenger of Allah said:

«عَجِبْتُ مِنْ قَضَاءِ اللهِ تَعَالَى لِلْمُؤْمِنِ إِنْ أَصَابَهُ خَيْرٌ حَمِدَ رَبَّهُ وَشَكَرَ، وَإِنْ أَصَابَتْهُ مُصِيبَةٌ حَمِدَ رَبَّهُ وَصَبَرَ، يُؤْجَرُ الْمُؤْمِنُ فِي كُلِّ شَيْءٍ حَتْى فِي اللُّقْمَةِ يَرْفَعُهَا إِلَى فِي امْرَأَتِه»

(I am amazed at what Allah has decreed for the believer; if something good befalls him, He praises his Lord and gives thanks, and if something bad befalls him, he praises his Lord and has patience. The believer will be rewarded for everything, even the morsel of food which he lifts to his wife’s mouth.)” This was also recorded by An-Nasa’i in Al-Yawm wal-Laylah. There is a corroborating report in the Two Sahihs, where a Hadith narrated by Abu Hurayrah, may Allah be pleased with him, says:

«عَجَبًا لِلْمُؤْمِنِ لَا يَقْضِي اللهُ تَعَالَى لَهُ قَضَاءً إِلَّا كَانَ خَيْرًا لَهُ، إِنْ أَصَابَتْهُ سَرَّاءُ شَكَرَ فَكَانَ خَيْرًا لَهُ، وَإِنْ أَصَابَتْهُ ضَرَّاءُ صَبَرَ فَكَانَ خَيْرًا لَهُ، وَلَيْسَ ذَلِكَ لِأَحَدٍ إِلَّا لِلْمُؤْمِن»

(How amazing is the affair of the believer! Allah does not decree anything for him but it is good for him. If something good happens to him, he gives thanks, and that is good for him; if something bad happens to him, he bears it with patience, and that is good for him. This is not for anyone except the believer.)” It was reported that Qatadah said:

﴿إِنَّ فِى ذلِكَ لآيَـتٍ لِّكُلِّ صَبَّارٍ شَكُورٍ﴾

g(Verily, in this are indeed signs for every steadfast, grateful.) It was Mutarrif who used to say: “How blessed is the grateful, patient servant. If he is given something, he gives thanks, and if he is tested, he bears it with patience.”

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