QURAN SUMMARY: AL ANKABUT

Surah Ankabut Background And Summary of Main Topics.

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

NAME:  العنكبوت, Al-Ankabut.

Name taken from Verse 41 where there is a mention of “Al-Ankabut”.

٤١  مَثَلُ الَّذِينَ اتَّخَذُوا مِنْ دُونِ اللَّهِ أَوْلِيَاءَ كَمَثَلِ الْعَنْكَبُوتِ اتَّخَذَتْ بَيْتًا ۖ وَإِنَّ أَوْهَنَ الْبُيُوتِ لَبَيْتُ الْعَنْكَبُوتِ ۖ لَوْ كَانُوا يَعْلَمُونَ
41  The example of those who take allies other than Allah is like that of the spider who takes a home. And indeed, the weakest of homes is the home of the spider, if they only knew.

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 Spider.

CHAPTER NUMBER: 29

SURAH ANKABUT TOTAL VERSES: 69

SURAH ANKABUT TOTAL WORDS: 978

TOTAL UNIQUE WORDS WITHOUT REPETITION: 575

TOTAL LETTERS: 4,317

REVELATION PERIOD:

Meccan, Approx. 613 – 616 AD. Except May be verse# 1-10 revealed in Medina.

MAIN CHARACTERS:

God, Believers, Parents, Nuh/Noah, Ibrahim/Abraham, Lut, People of Lut, Angels, Shoaib, Ad, Thamud, Korah/Qarun, Pharaoh, Haman, Spider, People Of The Scripture, Prophet Muhammad.

SURAH ANKABUT MAIN TOPICS:

Believers will be tried, Don’t Obey Parents if Associate With God, Story of Nuh/Noah his Age, Nuh Boat as Token, Ibrahim/Abraham Story saved from fire, Lut story, His People Approach Men for their desire, Mention of Spider’s Web, This World Is Child Play And Pastime.

SURAH ANKABUT KEY VERSES:

٢  أَحَسِبَ النَّاسُ أَنْ يُتْرَكُوا أَنْ يَقُولُوا آمَنَّا وَهُمْ لَا يُفْتَنُونَ

2  Do the people think that they will be left to say, “We believe” and they will not be tried?

٣  وَلَقَدْ فَتَنَّا الَّذِينَ مِنْ قَبْلِهِمْ ۖ فَلَيَعْلَمَنَّ اللَّهُ الَّذِينَ صَدَقُوا وَلَيَعْلَمَنَّ الْكَاذِبِينَ

3  But We have certainly tried those before them, and Allah will surely make evident those who are truthful, and He will surely make evident the liars.

١٤  وَلَقَدْ أَرْسَلْنَا نُوحًا إِلَىٰ قَوْمِهِ فَلَبِثَ فِيهِمْ أَلْفَ سَنَةٍ إِلَّا خَمْسِينَ عَامًا فَأَخَذَهُمُ الطُّوفَانُ وَهُمْ ظَالِمُونَ

14  And We certainly sent Noah to his people, and he remained among them a thousand years minus fifty years, and the flood seized them while they were wrongdoers.

٤١  مَثَلُ الَّذِينَ اتَّخَذُوا مِنْ دُونِ اللَّهِ أَوْلِيَاءَ كَمَثَلِ الْعَنْكَبُوتِ اتَّخَذَتْ بَيْتًا ۖ وَإِنَّ أَوْهَنَ الْبُيُوتِ لَبَيْتُ الْعَنْكَبُوتِ ۖ لَوْ كَانُوا يَعْلَمُونَ

41  The example of those who take allies other than Allah is like that of the spider who takes a home. And indeed, the weakest of homes is the home of the spider, if they only knew.

٤٨  وَمَا كُنْتَ تَتْلُو مِنْ قَبْلِهِ مِنْ كِتَابٍ وَلَا تَخُطُّهُ بِيَمِينِكَ ۖ إِذًا لَارْتَابَ الْمُبْطِلُونَ

48  And you did not recite before it any scripture, nor did you inscribe one with your right hand. Otherwise the falsifiers would have had [cause for] doubt.

٦٠  وَكَأَيِّنْ مِنْ دَابَّةٍ لَا تَحْمِلُ رِزْقَهَا اللَّهُ يَرْزُقُهَا وَإِيَّاكُمْ ۚ وَهُوَ السَّمِيعُ الْعَلِيمُ

60  And how many a creature carries not its [own] provision. Allah provides for it and for you. And He is the Hearing, the Knowing.

SUMMARY OF TOPICS

1-6(Do The People Think That They Will Be Left To Say, “We Believe” And They Will Not Be Tried?), 8-12(Don’T Obey Parents If They Endeavor To Make You Associate With God, Those Who Say Follow Our Way, And We Will Carry Your Sins Are Liars), 14(Nuh Remained In His People For 950 Years),15(God Saved Them And Made Nuh Boat A Token For The World), 16-27(Ibrahim Story, Ibrahim Saved From Fire Verse24, Only Lut Believed Him Verse26), 28-35(Prophet Lut, Lut Said His Nation That You Approach Men Verse29, Angel Reply To Ibrahim’s Concern About Lut “We Are More Knowing Of Who Is Within It” Verse32, God Made That Town A Token Verse35), 36-37(Prophet Shoaib To Median, Destroyed By Earthquake), 38(Destroyed Ad And Thamud), 39(God Destroyed Korah/Qarun, Pharaoh And Haman), 41(The Example Of Those Who Take Allies Other Than Allah Is Like That Of The Spider Who Takes A Home, And Spider Web Is The Frailest Of The Houses), 45(Namaz/Prayer Keeps Away From Indecency Lewdness), 46(And Do Not Argue With The People Of The Scripture Except In A Way That Is Best,), 48(Muhammad You Did Not Recite Before It Any Scripture, Nor Did You Inscribe One), 60 (Most Living Creatures Don’t Carry Their Food), 64(This World Is Child Play And Pastime)

SURAH ANKABUT BRIEF COMMENTARY & BACK GROUND

This Surah has 69 verses divided into 7 Rukus/Sections. This Surah was revealed in Mecca in an early period of Muhammad’s declaration of his prophethood and before the migration to Abyssinia took place, but persecution of early followers of Muhammad had already started. Some commentators of Quran regard the first ten verses of this Surah as Madani because of mention of hypocrites and hypocrisy there in those verses, which in their view was not there in Meccan times but such people were only present during the Madani period.

Like other Surahs revealed in Mecca, we find the emphasis on monotheism or the Oneness of God. The Surah shows that when it revealed, there were people who were convincing their youth not to believe in Muhammad and obey their Parents as this is what all religions command. But this Surah clearly answers this thing in verse 8.

This Surah tells the stories of Prophet Nuh/Noah, Ibrahim/Abraham, Lut, Shoaib and of  Ad, Thamud, Korah/Qarun, Pharaoh and Haman to comfort and encourage the Prophet and the believers. It says that all prophets and their followers suffered hardships for long periods of time but were helped by God and God’s help will definitely come. It narrates that when people reject God’s message, and God decides to punish them He does not spare anyone except those who believe, even the close relatives of the prophets cannot escape God’s Wrath nor does who posses a lot of power and wealth in this world.