71 Say [Prophet], ‘Just think, if God were to cast perpetual night over you until the Day of Resurrection, what god other than He could bring you light? Do you not listen?’ 72 Say, ‘Just think, if God were to cast perpetual day over you until the Day of Resurrection, what god other than He could give you night in which to rest? Do you not see? 73 In His mercy He has given you night and day, so that you may rest and seek His bounty and be grateful.’ 74 The Day will come when He will call out to them, saying, ‘Where are the partners you claimed for Me?’ 75 We shall call a witness from every community, and say, ‘Produce your evidence,’ and then they will know that truth belongs to God alone; the gods they invented will forsake them.
The Story of Qarun
76 Qarun was one of Moses’ people, but he oppressed them. We had given him such treasures that even their keys would have weighed down a whole company of strong men. His people said to him, ‘Do not gloat, for God does not like people who gloat. 77 Seek the life to come by means of what God has granted you, but do not neglect your rightful share in this world. Do good to others as God has done good to you. Do not seek to spread corruption in the land, for God does not love those who do this,’ 78 but he answered, ‘This wealth was given to me on account of the knowledge I possess.’ Did he not know that God had destroyed many generations before him, who had greater power than him and built up greater wealth? The guilty will not be questioned about their sins. [a] 79 He went out among his people in all his pomp, and those whose aim was the life of this world said, ‘If only we had been given something like what Qarun has been given: he really is a very fortunate man,’ 80 but those who were given knowledge said, ‘Alas for you! God’s reward is better for those who believe and do good deeds: only those who are steadfast will attain this.’ 81 We caused the earth to swallow him and his home: he had no one to help him against God, nor could he defend himself. 82 The next day, those who had, the day before, wished to be in his place exclaimed, ‘Alas [for you, Qarun]! It is God alone who gives what He will, abundantly or sparingly, to whichever He will of His creatures: if God had not been gracious to us, He would have caused the earth to swallow us too.’ Alas indeed! Those who deny the truth will never prosper.
83 We grant the Home in the Hereafter to those who do not seek superiority on earth or spread corruption: the happy ending is awarded to those who are mindful of God. 84 Whoever comes before God with a good deed will receive a better reward; whoever comes with an evil deed will be punished only for what he has done. 85 He who has made the Quran binding on you [Prophet] will bring you back home. [b] So say, ‘My Lord knows best who has brought true guidance and who is blatantly astray.’ 86 You yourself could not have expected the Scripture to be sent to you; it came only as a mercy from your Lord. So give no help to the disbelievers. 87 Do not let them turn you away from God’s revelations after they have been revealed to you. Call people to your Lord. Never become one of those who ascribe partners to God. 88 Do not call out to any other god beside God, for there is no god but Him. Everything will perish except His Face. His is the Judgement and to Him you shall all be brought back.
a. There are a number of interpretations of this verse, the most likely, according to Razi, being that the guilty will not be granted the privilege of being questioned about their sins, nor will they be given the opportunity to provide excuses.
b. To Him. Cf. verse 83. Various commentators take this to refer to Mecca or to the life to come.
The Qur'an (Oxford World's Classics)
The Qur'an / a new translation by M. A. S. Abdel Haleem, copyright © 2004 Oxford World's Classics (Oxford University Press). Used by permission. All rights reserved.