Surah 40

GHAFIR (Forgiver) or AL MU’MIN (The Believer)

In the name of Allah, the Gracious, the Merciful


1 Ha Mim.

2 The revelation of Al-Kitab is from Allah, exalted in power, full of knowledge,

3 Who forgives sin, accepts repentance, is strict in punishment, and has a long reach. There is no god but he. To him is the final goal.

4 None can dispute about the signs of Allah but the unbelievers. Let not, then, strutting about through the land deceive you!

5 But there were people before them, who denied the signs, the people of Nuh, and the confederates after them; and every people plotted against their prophet, to seize him, and disputed by means of vanities, there with to condemn the truth: but it was I that seized them! And how terrible was my reward!

6 Thus was the decree of your Lord proved true against the unbelievers that truly they are companions of the fire!

7 Those who carry the throne and those around it sing glory and praise to their Lord. Believe in him, and implore forgiveness for those who believe. Our Lord, your reach is over all things, in mercy and knowledge. Forgive, then, those who turn in repentance, and follow your path; and preserve them from the penalty of the blazing fire!


8 And grant, our Lord, that they enter the gardens of eternity, which you have promised to them, and to the righteous among their fathers, their wives, and their posterity! For you are the exalted in might, full of wisdom.

9 And preserve them from ills; and any whom you preserve from ills that day, on them will you have bestowed mercy indeed: and that will be truly the highest achievement.

10 The unbelievers will be addressed: Greater was the aversion of Allah to you than your aversion to yourselves, seeing that you were called to the faith and you used to refuse.

11 They will say: Our Lord! Twice have you made us die,[1] and twice have you given us life![2] Now have we recognized our sins: is there any way out?

12 This is because, when Allah was invoked as the only one, you rejected faith, but when partners were joined to him, you believed! The command is with Allah, most high, most great!

13 He it is who shows you his signs, and sends down sustenance for you from the sky: but only those receive admonition who turn to Allah.

14 Call then upon Allah with sincere devotion to him, even though the unbelievers may detest it.

15 Raised high above ranks, the Lord of the throne: by his command he causes his Spirit to descend upon those servants of his whom he chooses, [3] that he may warn of the day of mutual meeting,

16 The day on which they will all come forth: not a single thing concerning them is hidden from Allah. Whose will be the dominion that day? That of Allah, the one, the irresistible!


17 That day will every soul be requited for what it earned; no injustice will there be that day, for Allah is swift in taking account.

18 Warn them of the day that is drawing near, when the hearts will come right up to the throats to choke them; no intimate friend nor intercessor will the wrongdoers have, who could be listened to.

19 Allah knows of the tricks that deceive with the eyes, and all that the hearts of men conceal.

20 And Allah will judge with truth: but those whom men invoke besides him, will not be in a position to judge at all. Truly it is Allah alone who hears and sees all things.

21 Do they not travel through the earth and see what was the end of those before them? They were even superior to them in strength, and in the traces they have left in the land: but Allah did call them to account for their sins, and none had they to defend them against Allah.

22 That was because there came to them their messengers with clear signs, but they rejected them: so Allah called them to account: for he is full of strength, strict in punishment.

23 Of old we sent Musa, with our signs and a clear authority,

24 To Firaun, Haman, and Qarun; but they called him a sorcerer telling lies!

25 Now, when he came to them in truth, from us, they said, Slay the sons of those who believe with him, and keep alive their females, but the plots of unbelievers end in nothing but errors!


26 Said Firaun: Leave me to slay Musa; and let him call on his Lord! What I fear is lest he should change your religion, or lest he should cause mischief to appear in the land!

27 Musa said: I have indeed called upon my Lord and your Lord for protection from every arrogant one who believes not in the day of Account!

28 A believer, a man from among the people of Firaun, who had concealed his faith, said: Will you slay a man because he says, My Lord is Allah? When he has indeed come to you with clear signs from your Lord? And if he be a liar, on him is his lie; but, if he is telling the truth, then will fall on you something of the calamity of which he warns you: truly Allah guides not one who transgresses and lies!

29 O my people! Yours is the domination this day: You have the upper hand in the land: but who will help us from the punishment of Allah, should it befall us?Firaun said: I but point out to you that which I see; nor do I guide you but to the path of right!

30 Then said the man who believed: O my people! Truly I fear for you something like the day of the confederates!

31 Something like the fate of the people of Nuh, the Aad, and the Thamud, and those who came after wishes injustice to his servants.

32 And O my people! I fear for you a day when there will be mutual calling,

33 A day when you shall turn your backs and flee: no defender shall you have from Allah: any whom Allah leaves to stray, there is none to guide.


34 “And to you there came Yusuf in times gone by, with clear signs, but you ceased not to doubt of the mission for which he had come: at length, when he died, you said: ‘No messenger will Allah send after him.’  Thus does Allah leave to stray such as transgress and live in doubt,

35 And dispute about the signs of Allah, without any authority that has reached them. Grievous and odious in the sight of Allah and of the believers. Thus does Allah seal up every heart of arrogant and obstinate transgressors.”

36 Firaun said: O Haman! Build me a lofty palace, that I may attain the ways and means.

37 The ways and means of the heavens, and that I may mount up to the God of Musa: but as far as I am concerned, I think Musa is a liar! Thus was made alluring, in Firaun’s eyes, the evil of his deeds, and he was hindered from the path; and the plot of Firaun led to nothing but perdition.

38 The man who believed said further: O my people! Follow me: I will lead you to the path of right.

39 O my people! This life of the present is nothing but convenience: it is the hereafter that is the home that will last.

40 He that works evil will not be requited but by the like of it: and he that works a righteous deed whether man or woman and is a believer such will enter the garden: in it will they have abundance without measure.


41 And O my people! How strange it is for me to call you to salvation while you call me to the fire!

42 You call upon me to blaspheme against Allah, and to join with him partners of whom I have no knowledge; and I call you to the exalted in power, who forgives again and again!

43 Without doubt you call me to one who is not fit to be called to, whether in this world, or in the hereafter; our return will be to Allah; and the transgressors will be companions of the fire!

44 Soon will you remember what I say to you. My affair I commit to Allah: for Allah watches over his servants.

45 Then Allah saved him from every ill that they plotted, but the brunt of the penalty encompassed on all sides the people of Firaun.

46 In front of the fire will they be brought, morning and evening; and on the day that judgment will be established. Cast the people of Firaun into the severest penalty!

47 Behold, they will dispute with each other in the fire! The weak ones will say to those who had been arrogant, We but followed you: can you then take from us some share of the fire?

48 Those who had been arrogant will say: We are all in this fire! Truly, Allah has judged between servants!

49 Those in the fire will say to the keepers of hell: Pray to your Lord to lighten us the penalty for a day!


50 They will say: “Did there not come to you your messengers with clear signs?” They will say, “Yes”. They will reply, “Then pray! But the prayer of those without faith is nothing but in error!”

51 We will, without doubt, help our messengers and those who believe, in this world’s life and on the day when the witnesses will stand forth,

52 The day when no profit will it be to wrongdoers to present their excuses, but they will have the curse and the home of misery.

53 We aforetime gave Musa the guidance, and we gave Al-Kitab as an inheritance to Bani-Israel,

54 A guide and a message to men of understanding.

55 Patiently, then, persevere: for the promise of Allah is true: and ask forgiveness for your sin,[4] and celebrate the praises of your Lord in the evening and in the morning.

56 Those who dispute about the signs of Allah without any authority bestowed on them, there is nothing in their breasts but greatness, which they shall never attain to: seek refuge, then, in Allah: it is he who hears and sees all things.

57 Assuredly the creation of the heavens and the earth is a greater matter than the creation of men: yet most men understand not.

58 Not equal are the blind and those who see: nor are those who believe and work deeds of righteousness, and those who do evil. Little do you learn by admonition!


59 The Hour will certainly come: of which there is no doubt: yet most men believe not.

60 And your Lord says: Call on me; I will answer you: but those who are too arrogant to serve me will surely find themselves in hell in humiliation!

61 It is Allah who has made the night for you, that you may rest in it, and the day, as that which helps to see. Truly Allah is full of grace and bounty to men: yet most men give not thanks.

62 Such is Allah, your Lord, the creator of all things. There is no god but he: then how you are deluded away from the truth!

63 Thus are deluded those who habitually reject the signs of Allah.

64 It is Allah who has made for you the earth as a resting place, and the sky as a canopy, and has given you shape and made your shapes beautiful, and has provided for you sustenance, of things pure an good; such is Allah your Lord. So glory to Allah, the Lord of the universe!

65 He is the living one: there is no god but he: call upon him, giving him sincere devotion. Praise be to Allah, Lord of the universe!

66 Say: I have been forbidden to invoke those whom you invoke besides Allah, seeing that the clear signs have come to me from my Lord; and I have been commanded to submit to the Lord of the universe.


67 It is he who has created you from dust, then from a sperm drop, then from a leech like clot; then does he get you out into the light as a child: then lets you reach your age of full strength; then lets you become old, though of you there are some who die before; and lets you reach a term appointed; in order that you may learn wisdom.

68 It is he who gives life and death; and when he decides upon an affair, he says to it, Be, and it is.

69 Do you not see those that dispute concerning the signs of Allah, how they are turned away?

70 Those who reject Al-Kitab and that which we sent our messengers: but soon shall they know,

71 When the yokes are round their necks, and the chains; they shall be dragged along

72 In the boiling fetid fluid; then in the fire shall they be burned;

73 Then shall it be said to them: Where are the deities to which you gave part worship

74 In derogation of Allah? They will reply: They have left us in the lurch: no, we invoked not, of old, anything. Thus does Allah leave the unbelievers to stray.

75 That was because you used to rejoice on the earth in things other than the truth, and that you used to be insolent.

76 Enter the gates of hell, to dwell in it: and evil is the abode of the arrogant!

77 So persevere in patience; for the promise of Allah is true: and whether we show you some part of what we promise them, or we take your soul, it is to us that they shall all return.


78 We did aforetime send messengers before you: of them there are some whose story we have related to you, and some whose story we have not related to you. It was not possible for any messenger to bring a sign except by the leave of Allah: but when the command of Allah issued, the matter was decided in truth and justice, and there perished, there and then, those who stood on falsehoods.

79 It is Allah who made cattle for you, that you may use some for riding and some for food;

80 And there are advantages in them for you; that you may through them attain to any need in your hearts; and on them and on ships you are carried.

81 And he shows you his signs: then which of the signs of Allah will you deny?

82 Do they not travel through the earth and see what was the end of those before them? They were more numerous than these and superior in strength and in the traces they have left in the land: you all that they accomplished was of no profit to them.

83 For when their messengers came to them with clear signs, they exulted in such knowledge as they had; but that very thing at which they used to scoff, hemmed them in.

84 But when they saw our punishment, they said: We believe in Allah, the one God and we reject the partners we used to join with him.

85 But their professing the faith when they saw our punishment was not going to profit them. This is Allah’s way of dealing with his servants. And even thus did the rejecters of Allah perish!


Next Page


[1] “Twice have you made us die” is explained in part by the following reference from the holy Injil,  “I saw a great white throne, and him who sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away. There was found no place for them. I saw the dead, the great and the small, standing before the throne, and they opened books. Another book was opened, which is the book of life. The dead were judged out of the things which were written in the books, according to their works. The sea gave up the dead who were in it. Death and the Grave gave up the dead who were in them. They were judged, each one according to his works. Death and the Grave were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire. If anyone was not found written in the book of life, he was cast into the lake of fire.” (Revelation 20:11-15). In the day of judgment, all people will be raised from death to stand before Allah. Those whose names are not found in the “book of life” will experience the “second death,” the lake of fire. It is a place of conscious eternal torment, where Satan and Dajjal will also be punished. There is no possibility of release from the lake of fire, as this verse says, “Iblis who deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and sulphur, where the beast and the false prophet are also. They will be tormented day and night forever and ever.” (Injil, Revelation 20:10).

[2] “Twice you have given us life” refers to when life is first given at conception in the womb, and secondly, when life is restored at the resurrection from the dead.

[3] The holy Injil gives examples of this phenomenon where the Spirit descended upon whole groups of people. See Acts chapter 2, chapter 8, and chapter 10. This Spirit is a special gift promised to all followers of ‘Isa al-Masih. As the Injil says, “For to you is the promise, and to your children, and to all who are far off, even as many as Allah our God will call to himself” (Acts 2:39) and “I will pray to the Father, and he will give you another Counsellor, that he may be with you forever–the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive; for it does not see him, neither knows him. You know him, for he lives with you, and will be in you” (John 14:16,17). We read in the Injil that one time Prophet ‘Isa  was teaching the Jews during a special festival and the following happened, “Now on the last and greatest day of the feast, ‘Isa stood and cried out, ‘If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink! He who believes in me, as Al-Kitab has said, from within him will flow rivers of living water.’ But he said this about the Spirit, which those believing in him were to receive. For the Holy Spirit was not yet given, because ‘Isa was not yet glorified.” (John 7:37-39).

[4] Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) is told here to ask forgiveness for his sin (“your” is singular, not plural). It is a commonly held error that prophets are sinless. For more on this subject see Lesson Two of the study course “The Testimony of the Holy Quran.” See also Surah 47:19.