The Meaning of the Glorious Qur'ân, by M.M. Pickthall, at sacred-texts.com
46. al-Ahqaf: The Sandhills
1 Ha. Mim.
2 The revelation of the Scripture is from Allah the Mighty, the Wise.
3 We created not the heavens and the earth and all that is between them save with truth, and for a term appointed. But those who disbelieve turn away from that whereof they are warned.
4 Say (unto them, O Muhammad): Have ye thought on all that ye invoke beside Allah ? Show me what they have created of the earth. Or have they any portion in the heavens ? Bring me a scripture before this (Scripture), or some vestige of knowledge (in support of what ye say), if ye are truthful.
5 And who is further astray than those who, instead of Allah, pray unto such as hear not their prayer until the Day of Resurrection, and are unconscious of their prayer,
6 And when mankind are gathered (to the Judgment) will become enemies for them, and will become deniers of having been worshipped.
7 And when Our clear revelations are recited unto them, those who disbelieve say of the Truth when it reacheth them: This is mere magic.
8 Or say they: He hath invented it ? Say (O Muhammad): If I have invented it, still ye have no power to support me against Allah. He is Best Aware of what ye say among yourselves concerning it. He sufficeth for a witness between me and you. And He is the Forgiving, the Merciful.
9 Say: I am no new thing among the messengers (of Allah), nor know I what will be done with me or with you. I do but follow that which is inspired in me, and I am but a plain warner.
10 Bethink you: If it is from Allah and ye disbelieve therein, and a witness of the Children of Israel hath already testified to the like thereof and hath believed, and ye are too proud (what plight is yours) ? Lo! Allah guideth not wrong-doing folk.
11 And those who disbelieve say of those who believe: If it had been (any) good, they would not have been before us in attaining it. And since they will not be guided by it, they say: This is an ancient lie;
12 When before it there was the Scripture of Moses, an example and a mercy; and this is a confirming Scripture in the Arabic language, that it may warn those who do wrong and bring good tidings for the righteous.
13 Lo! those who say: Our Lord is Allah, and thereafter walk aright, there shall no fear come upon them neither shall they grieve.
14 Such are rightful owners of the Garden, immortal therein, as a reward for what they used to do.
15 And We have commended unto man kindness toward parents. His mother beareth him with reluctance, and bringeth him forth with reluctance, and the bearing of him and the weaning of him is thirty months, till, when he attaineth full strength and reacheth forty years, he saith: My Lord! Arouse me that I may give thanks for the favour wherewith Thou hast favoured me and my parents, and that I may do right acceptable unto Thee. And be gracious unto me in the matter of my seed. Lo! I have turned unto Thee repentant, and lo! I am of those who surrender (unto Thee).
16 Those are they from whom We accept the best of what they do, and overlook their evil deeds. (They are) among the owners of the Garden. This is the true promise which they were promised (in the world).
17 And whoso saith unto his parents: Fie upon you both! Do ye threaten me that I shall be brought forth (again) when generations before me have passed away ? And they twain cry unto Allah for help (and say): Woe unto thee! Believe! Lo! the promise of Allah is true. But he saith: This is naught save fables of the men of old:
18 Such are those on whom the Word concerning nations of the jinn and mankind which have passed away before them hath effect. Lo! they are the losers.
19 And for all there will be ranks from what they do, that He may pay them for their deeds; and they will not be wronged.
20 And on the day when those who disbelieve are exposed to the Fire (it will be said): Ye squandered your good things in the life of the world and sought comfort therein. Now this day ye are rewarded with the doom of ignominy because ye were disdainful in the land without a right, and because ye used to transgress.
21 And make mention (O Muhammad) of the brother of A'ad when he warned his folk among the wind-curved sandhills - and verily warners came and went before and after him - saying: Serve none but Allah. Lo! I fear for you the doom of a tremendous Day.
22 They said: Hast come to turn us away from our gods ? Then bring upon us that wherewith thou threatenest us, if thou art of the truthful.
23 He said: The knowledge is with Allah only. I convey unto you that wherewith I have been sent, but I see you are a folk that know not.
24 Then, when they beheld it as a dense cloud coming toward their valleys, they said: Here is a cloud bringing us rain. Nay, but it is that which ye did seek to hasten, a wind wherein is painful torment,
25 Destroying all things by commandment of its Lord. And morning found them so that naught could be seen save their dwellings. Thus do We reward the guilty folk.
26 And verily We had empowered them with that wherewith We have not empowered you, and had assigned them ears and eyes and hearts; but their ears and eyes and hearts availed them naught since they denied the revelations of Allah; and what they used to mock befell them.
27 And verily We have destroyed townships round about you, and displayed (for them) Our revelation, that haply they might return.
28 Then why did those whom they had chosen for gods as a way of approach (unto Allah) not help them ? Nay, but they did fail them utterly. And (all) that was their lie, and what they used to invent.
29 And when We inclined toward thee (Muhammad) certain of the jinn, who wished to hear the Qur'an and, when they were in its presence, said: Give ear! and, when it was finished, turned back to their people, warning.
30 They said: O our people! Lo! we have heard a scripture which hath been revealed after Moses, confirming that which was before it, guiding unto the truth and a right road.
31 O our people! respond to Allah's summoner and believe in Him. He will forgive you some of your sins and guard you from a painful doom.
32 And whoso respondeth not to Allah's summoner he can nowise escape in the earth, and he hath no protecting friends instead of Him. Such are in error manifest.
33 Have they not seen that Allah, Who created the heavens and the earth and was not wearied by their creation, is Able to give life to the dead ? Aye, He verily is Able to do all things.
34 And on the day when those who disbelieve are exposed to the Fire (they will be asked): Is not this real ? They will say: Yea, by our Lord. He will say: Then taste the doom for that ye disbelieved.
35 Then have patience (O Muhammad) even as the stout of heart among the messengers (of old) had patience, and seek not to hasten on (the doom) for them. On the day when they see that which they are promised (it will seem to them) as though they had tarried but an hour of daylight. A clear message. Shall any be destroyed save evil-living folk ?