QURAN SUMMARY: AL AHZAB

Surah Ahzab Background And Summary of Main Topics.

Surah Ahzab Statistics: Total Number of Verses, Revelation Period, Main Characters, Theme And Key Verses.

NAME:  الأحزاب, Al-Ahzab.

Name taken from Verse 20 where there is a mention of “Al-Ahzab”.

٢٠  يَحْسَبُونَ الْأَحْزَابَ لَمْ يَذْهَبُوا ۖ وَإِنْ يَأْتِ الْأَحْزَابُ يَوَدُّوا لَوْ أَنَّهُمْ بَادُونَ فِي الْأَعْرَابِ يَسْأَلُونَ عَنْ أَنْبَائِكُمْ ۖ وَلَوْ كَانُوا فِيكُمْ مَا قَاتَلُوا إِلَّا قَلِيلًا
20  They think the companies have not [yet] withdrawn. And if the companies should come [again], they would wish they were in the desert among the bedouins, inquiring [from afar] about your news. And if they should be among you, they would not fight except for a little.

But It does not mean that this name is the actual topic discussed in the whole Surah. It is just a reference and mark/symbol to distinguish this Surah from others as is with most other Surahs of Quran. While there are diversified topics discussed in these Surahs.

ENGLISH NAME: The Confederates.

CHAPTER NUMBER: 33

SURAH AHZAB TOTAL VERSES: 73

SURAH AHZAB TOTAL WORDS: 1,303

TOTAL UNIQUE WORDS WITHOUT REPETITION: 688

TOTAL LETTERS: 5,788

REVELATION PERIOD:

Medinan, Approx. 627 – 628 AD.

MAIN CHARACTERS:

God, Prophet Muhammad, Wives Of Prophet,  Ahle Bait/People Of Household, Disbelievers, Hypocrites, People of the Scripture, Prophet Adopted Son Ziad/Zyed. 

SURAH AHZAB MAIN TOPICS:

Zihar (Declaring Wife as Unlawful), Wives Of Prophet Are Mother Of Believers, Battle Of Trench, Bani Quraizah; Victory Over Neighboring Jewish Tribe, Divorce Option For Wives of prophet and Double Punishment & Special Etiquettes, Story Of Ziad/Zyed, Seal Of The Prophethood, Lawful Women For Prophet, Etiquettes for Entering in Prophets house, Parda/Hijab.

SURAH AHZAB KEY VERSES:

٦  النَّبِيُّ أَوْلَىٰ بِالْمُؤْمِنِينَ مِنْ أَنْفُسِهِمْ ۖ وَأَزْوَاجُهُ أُمَّهَاتُهُمْ ۗ وَأُولُو الْأَرْحَامِ بَعْضُهُمْ أَوْلَىٰ بِبَعْضٍ فِي كِتَابِ اللَّهِ مِنَ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ وَالْمُهَاجِرِينَ إِلَّا أَنْ تَفْعَلُوا إِلَىٰ أَوْلِيَائِكُمْ مَعْرُوفًا ۚ كَانَ ذَٰلِكَ فِي الْكِتَابِ مَسْطُورًا

6  The Prophet is more worthy of the believers than themselves, and his wives are [in the position of] their mothers. And those of [blood] relationship are more entitled [to inheritance] in the decree of Allah than the [other] believers and the emigrants, except that you may do to your close associates a kindness [through bequest]. That was in the Book inscribed.

٢٨  يَا أَيُّهَا النَّبِيُّ قُلْ لِأَزْوَاجِكَ إِنْ كُنْتُنَّ تُرِدْنَ الْحَيَاةَ الدُّنْيَا وَزِينَتَهَا فَتَعَالَيْنَ أُمَتِّعْكُنَّ وَأُسَرِّحْكُنَّ سَرَاحًا جَمِيلًا

28  O Prophet, say to your wives, “If you should desire the worldly life and its adornment, then come, I will provide for you and give you a gracious release.

٢٩  وَإِنْ كُنْتُنَّ تُرِدْنَ اللَّهَ وَرَسُولَهُ وَالدَّارَ الْآخِرَةَ فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ أَعَدَّ لِلْمُحْسِنَاتِ مِنْكُنَّ أَجْرًا عَظِيمًا

29  But if you should desire Allah and His Messenger and the home of the Hereafter – then indeed, Allah has prepared for the doers of good among you a great reward.”

٣٠  يَا نِسَاءَ النَّبِيِّ مَنْ يَأْتِ مِنْكُنَّ بِفَاحِشَةٍ مُبَيِّنَةٍ يُضَاعَفْ لَهَا الْعَذَابُ ضِعْفَيْنِ ۚ وَكَانَ ذَٰلِكَ عَلَى اللَّهِ يَسِيرًا

30  O wives of the Prophet, whoever of you should commit a clear immorality – for her the punishment would be doubled two fold, and ever is that, for Allah, easy.

٣٢  يَا نِسَاءَ النَّبِيِّ لَسْتُنَّ كَأَحَدٍ مِنَ النِّسَاءِ ۚ إِنِ اتَّقَيْتُنَّ فَلَا تَخْضَعْنَ بِالْقَوْلِ فَيَطْمَعَ الَّذِي فِي قَلْبِهِ مَرَضٌ وَقُلْنَ قَوْلًا مَعْرُوفًا

32  O wives of the Prophet, you are not like anyone among women. If you fear Allah, then do not be soft in speech [to men], lest he in whose heart is disease should covet, but speak with appropriate speech.

٣٣  وَقَرْنَ فِي بُيُوتِكُنَّ وَلَا تَبَرَّجْنَ تَبَرُّجَ الْجَاهِلِيَّةِ الْأُولَىٰ ۖ وَأَقِمْنَ الصَّلَاةَ وَآتِينَ الزَّكَاةَ وَأَطِعْنَ اللَّهَ وَرَسُولَهُ ۚ إِنَّمَا يُرِيدُ اللَّهُ لِيُذْهِبَ عَنْكُمُ الرِّجْسَ أَهْلَ الْبَيْتِ وَيُطَهِّرَكُمْ تَطْهِيرًا

33  And abide in your houses and do not display yourselves as [was] the display of the former times of ignorance. And establish prayer and give zakah and obey Allah and His Messenger. Allah intends only to remove from you the impurity [of sin], O people of the [Prophet’s] household, and to purify you with [extensive] purification.

٤٠  مَا كَانَ مُحَمَّدٌ أَبَا أَحَدٍ مِنْ رِجَالِكُمْ وَلَٰكِنْ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ وَخَاتَمَ النَّبِيِّينَ ۗ وَكَانَ اللَّهُ بِكُلِّ شَيْءٍ عَلِيمًا

40  Muhammad is not the father of [any] one of your men, but [he is] the Messenger of Allah and last of the prophets. And ever is Allah, of all things, Knowing.

٥٣  يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا لَا تَدْخُلُوا بُيُوتَ النَّبِيِّ إِلَّا أَنْ يُؤْذَنَ لَكُمْ إِلَىٰ طَعَامٍ غَيْرَ نَاظِرِينَ إِنَاهُ وَلَٰكِنْ إِذَا دُعِيتُمْ فَادْخُلُوا فَإِذَا طَعِمْتُمْ فَانْتَشِرُوا وَلَا مُسْتَأْنِسِينَ لِحَدِيثٍ ۚ إِنَّ ذَٰلِكُمْ كَانَ يُؤْذِي النَّبِيَّ فَيَسْتَحْيِي مِنْكُمْ ۖ وَاللَّهُ لَا يَسْتَحْيِي مِنَ الْحَقِّ ۚ وَإِذَا سَأَلْتُمُوهُنَّ مَتَاعًا فَاسْأَلُوهُنَّ مِنْ وَرَاءِ حِجَابٍ ۚ ذَٰلِكُمْ أَطْهَرُ لِقُلُوبِكُمْ وَقُلُوبِهِنَّ ۚ وَمَا كَانَ لَكُمْ أَنْ تُؤْذُوا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ وَلَا أَنْ تَنْكِحُوا أَزْوَاجَهُ مِنْ بَعْدِهِ أَبَدًا ۚ إِنَّ ذَٰلِكُمْ كَانَ عِنْدَ اللَّهِ عَظِيمًا

53  O you who have believed, do not enter the houses of the Prophet except when you are permitted for a meal, without awaiting its readiness. But when you are invited, then enter; and when you have eaten, disperse without seeking to remain for conversation. Indeed, that [behavior] was troubling the Prophet, and he is shy of [dismissing] you. But Allah is not shy of the truth. And when you ask [his wives] for something, ask them from behind a partition. That is purer for your hearts and their hearts. And it is not [conceivable or lawful] for you to harm the Messenger of Allah or to marry his wives after him, ever. Indeed, that would be in the sight of Allah an enormity.

٥٦  إِنَّ اللَّهَ وَمَلَائِكَتَهُ يُصَلُّونَ عَلَى النَّبِيِّ ۚ يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا صَلُّوا عَلَيْهِ وَسَلِّمُوا تَسْلِيمًا

56  Indeed, Allah confers blessing upon the Prophet, and His angels [ask Him to do so]. O you who have believed, ask [Allah to confer] blessing upon him and ask [Allah to grant him] peace.

SUMMARY OF TOPICS

1-3(Fear Allah And Do Not Obey The Disbelievers And The Hypocrites.), 4-5(Just By declaring Your Wives Unlawful to yourself they Do not Become Your Mothers, Nor Your Adopted Sons Are Real Sons), 6(Wives Of Prophet Are Mother Of Believers, Inheritance; Blood Relationship Are More Entitled To Inheritance In The Decree Of Allah ), 7(God Took Covenant From The Prophets Including Prophet Muhammad), 9-15(Battle Of Trench, Allah Favor Sent Wind Verse9, When They Came At You From Above You And From Below You Verse10, Behavior Of Hypocrites During Battle), 16-25(Fear & Bravery Hypocrites Vs Believers, There Has Certainly Been For You In The Messenger Of Allah An Excellent Pattern), 26-27(Bani Quraizah; Victory Over Neighboring Jewish Tribe), 28(Warning To Wives Of Prophet, Divorce Option For Wives), 30-31(If Open Lewdness Among Wives Of Prophet, Then Double Punishment, Double Reward in Case of Good Deeds), 32( O Wives Of The Prophet, You Are Not Like Anyone Among Women, So No Soft/Attractive Talks With Strangers And Of Opposite Sex, And Abide In Your Houses), 33(Ahle Bait/People Of Household Allah Intends Only To Remove From You The Impurity), 35(10 Types Of Righteous Men And Women), 36(No Claim Of Any Say/Option In Front Of Allah And Prophet Rasul), 37-39(Story Of Ziad, Allah Command To Prophet To Marry Ziad’s Divorced Wife), 40( Is Not The Father Of Any Of Your Men But A Rasul And Seal Of The Prophethood), 41-48(Muhammad Sent As A Witness And A Bringer Of Good Tidings, A Warner And As A Lamp Spreading Light), 49(Iddah/Waiting Period Of Untouched Wife: Nil), 50 (Lawful Women For Prophet, Permission To Marry More Than Four Wives), 52(Prophet Not Allowed To Take Other Than These Women Mentioned In Verse50, Restriction On Prophet To Marry Or Divorce After Verse50), 53( Do Not Enter Prophet House Without Permission, Not Stay Long At Prophet House, Do not Marry Prophet Wives After Prophet’s Death), 55( Parda/Hijab Dress For Women In Presence Of Mahrram Males), 56(Darud; Allah Confers Blessing Upon The Prophet, And His Angels), 59( Parda/Hijab For Prophet Wives And Daughters And The Women Of The Believers), 60-61( Propaganda People, Slay Them), 69(Don’t Be Like Moses Followers), 72 ( God Offered Trust To Heavens & Earth & Mountains But They Refused To Bear It, But Man Bore It)

SURAH AHZAB BRIEF COMMENTARY & BACK GROUND:

This Surah has 73 verses divided into 9 Rukus/Sections. This Surah was revealed in Madina after the battle of Trench and discusses three major issues: the Battle of Trench, the battle of Bani Quraizah and the marriage of Prophet with Zainab, the ex-wife of his adopted son Zyed. It talks about The two battles and rulings to demolish some pre-Islamic marriage customs and of child-adoption and also social issues related to Hijab/parda of Muslim women. Surah Ahzab and Nur are the only Surahs of Quran that gives instructions on GuardIng Private Part And Adornment of women. There is a difference of opinion among Quranic commentators as to whether Surah Nur revealed before Surah Ahzab or vice versa.

After The battle of Uhad and setback of the Muslim army, the opponents of Muslims were in high spirit, and they got a hope that they could uproot this Islamic community completely. But soon after that the determination of Prophet and his companions again showed all the nearby tribes of Arabs that they have not lost their courage and its not easy to extinguish the light of Allah and His message. After Uhad Muslims had a series of successful campaigns against Banu Asad, Bani Nadir and Bani Ghatafan and the Holy Prophet also went forth to Badr to fight Abu Sufyan which he challenged Muslims at the end of Uhud that Meccans will see Muslims again at Badr next year. Prophet waited for him for 8 days with an army of 1500 men but although he left Mecca with an army of 2000 but could not get the courage to come for a combat.

All these above-mentioned campaigns restored the image of Muslims and also made the whole of Arabia to think that now no single tribe can individually fight and overcome Muslims. This was the background that whole Arab tribes decided to collectively attack Madina in 5AH which famously known as the Battle of Ahzab Or battle of Trench as the Muslims chose to defend Madina by digging a Trench on the north-west of Madinah in six days. The Trench provided a shield as on the back side is the Mount Salat their back, To the east and southwestern side there are lava rocks. To the south were many gardens which are impassable for a large army. The attack could be made only from the east and west sides of the Uhud, where Prophet decided to secure by a Trench.

So from the east side, the tribes of Bani Sulaim, Ghatafan, Fazarah, etc. came. From the north, the Jews of Bani an-Nadir and Bani Qainuqa came, who after their exile from Madinah settled in Khaiber and valley of Qura. From the south the Quraish came with their allies. Together they numbered from 10,000 to 12,000 men.

The enemies reached and camped and decided to siege the city of Madina. After a long 25 days siege In winter and lastly after a strong wind and thunderstorm, the enemy lost their heart and left the siege and the battleground even during the night and returned to their homes. This was when Prophet said: “The Meccan’s will never be able to attack Madina again: now you will take the offensive.”

Soon after This Hazrat Gabriel Came to Prophet and told him that Muslims should immediately deal with Bani Quraizah, the Jewish tribe who conspired and supported the enemies of Trench battle. Muslims went under the Prophet’s Command and defeated and uprooted them. Soon after that and after receiving defeats from all sides, the enemies of Muslims community took the marriage of Prophet with Hazrat Zainab a way to morally disgrace Prophet by raising questions on two grounds. First, his marriage with his daughter In law as they made stories that Prophet had fallen in love with his daughter-in-law, and when the son had come to know of this, he divorced his wife, and the father married his daughter-in-law. Then secondly on the ground that at the time of this marriage Prophet already had 4 wives, so the enemies also raised questions that as for others it had been forbidden to keep more than four wives at a time, but how the Holy Prophet himself had taken a fifth wife.