No. 4 (177 Verses)

In the Name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful

Introduction to the Sura :

This Sura, which contains 177 verses, was revealed in Medina. Next to Sura Al-Baqarah, it is the longest Sura of the Qur'an from the point of the number of words and letters. Its contents invite to Faith, justice, taking examples from the nations of the past, breaking the ties of friendship with the enemies of Allah, and supporting the orphans. In this Sura there are subjects such as marriage, equitable distribution of property after death, the necessity of obeying the divine leader, immigration, Holy War in the way of Allah, and so on.

This Sura is entitled An-Nisa, (the women) , since the first thirty five verses of it are about women and family affairs. (1)

The Virtue of Studying This Sura:

According to a tradition, the Prophet of Islam (p.b.u.h.) said: "Whoever recites Sura An-Nisa, as if this person has spent property in the path of Allah as much as any Muslim inherits by virtue of the purport of this Sura, and also, a similar reward of a person who has freed a slave, will be given to him." (1)

It is evident that the purpose in this tradition, and all of the similar traditions, is not a bare recitation of the verses, but recitation is a preparation for comprehension, the which is, in its turn, a preparation for

(1) Majma'-ul-Bayan, vol. 3, p. 1

action and behaving accordingly in personal and social life. Thus, it is certain that if Muslims take lessons from the contents of the verses of this Sura and apply them in their own lives, besides their worldly advantages, they will enjoy of all these rewards in the Hereafter.

Section one : Responsibilities of the Guardians of Orphans Commentary : Verse 1

Respect for the ties of relationship - Care of orphans' property Conditional Polygamy Permitted - Warning against embezzlement of orphans' property.

بِسْمِ اللّهِ الرَّحْمَنِ الرَّحِيمِ

(1) يَا أَيُّهَا النَّاسُ اتَّقُواْ رَبَّكُمُ الَّذِي خَلَقَكُم مِّن نَّفْسٍ وَاحِدَةٍ وَخَلَقَ مِنْهَا زَوْجَهَا وَبَثَّ مِنْهُمَا رِجَالاً كَثِيرًا وَنِسَاء وَاتَّقُواْ اللّهَ الَّذِي تَسَاءلُونَ بِهِ وَالأَرْحَامَ إِنَّ اللّهَ كَانَ عَلَيْكُمْ رَقِيبًا

In the Name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful

  1. " O' people! be in awe of your Lord, Who created you from a single soul and from it created its mate and spread from them (the couple) many men and women. And be in awe of Allah through Whom you demand one of another, as well as any ties of kinship; Surely Allah is watching over you."

Commentary :

Challenge against Unjust Discrimination

The first verse of this sura addresses all human beings. The content of this verse is a message to mankind as a whole. It invites them to piety and being in awe of Allah. It says:

" O' people! be in awe of your Lord, ..."

Then, to introduce the Lord Who is aware of all deeds of human beings, it points to one of His attributes which is the origin of the unity of human race. It says:

"... Who created you from a single soul ..."

The phrase ' a single soul ' refers to the first human being whom the Qur'an introduces as ' 'Adam ', the father of all human beings. The application of the term /bani'adam/ 'the children of 'Adam' in the Qur'an refers to this meaning, too. Then, in the next sentence, it says :

"... and from it created its mate ..."

This means that He created Adam's wife from his nature, not from the limbs of his body. Basing on a tradition from Imam Baqir (a.s.) , the creation of Eve from one of the ribs of Adam has intensely been rejected, and it has been stipulated that Eve was created from the rest of Adam's clay. In the next verse, it continues saying:

"... and spread from them (the couple) many men and women. ..."

This idea leads to the comprehension that the multiplying of the race of the children of Adam has been performed only through Adam and his wife, and no other creature has had any hand in it. Then, for the sake of the importance that piety has in the structure of the foundation of a safe and sound society, again it invites people to observing piety. It advises people to be in awe of Allah, the One Who is Great in their view, so that when they want to demand something from others, they apply His Name. It says :

"... And be in awe of Allah through Whom you demand one of another, ..."

And it adds that :

"... as well as any ties of kinship, ..."

Mentioning this subject here is a sign of an extraordinary importance that the Qur'an maintains for strengthening blood-kinship. At the end of the verse, it says:

"... Surely Allah is watching over you."

That is, He sees all your deeds and intentions and, by the way, He protects you against unpleasant adventures.