Chapter 33: The Confederates 


SECTION 1: Spiritual and Physical Relationship


In the name of God,
Most Gracious, Most Merciful.


1. O Prophet! Fear God, and listen not to the Unbelievers and the Hypocrites: verily God is full of knowledge and wisdom. 2. But follow that which comes to you by inspiration from your Lord: for God is well acquainted with (all) that you do. 3. And put your trust in God, and enough is God as a Disposer of affairs.


4. God has not made for any man two hearts in his (one) body: nor has He made your wives whom you divorce by Ẓihār your mothers: nor has He made your adopted sons your sons. Such is (only) your (manner of) speech by your mouths. But God tells (you) the Truth, and He shows the (right) Way. 5. Call them by (the names of) their fathers: that is juster in the sight of God. But if you know not their father’s (names, call them) your Brothers in faith, or your Mawlās. But there is no blame on you if you make a mistake therein: (what counts is) the intention of your hearts: and God is Oft-Returning, Most Merciful. 6. The Prophet is closer to the Believers than their own selves, and his wives are their mothers. Blood-relations among each other have closer personal ties, in the Decree of God, than (the Brotherhood of) Believers and Muhājirs: nevertheless do you what is just to your closest friends: such is the writing in the Decree (of God).


7. And remember We took from the Prophets their Covenant: as (We did) from you: from Noah, Abraham, Moses, and Jesus the son of Mary: We took from them a solemn Covenant: 8. That (God) may question the (Custodians) of Truth concerning the Truth they (were charged with): and He has prepared for the Unbelievers a grievous Penalty.


We did indeed aforetime give the Book to Moses: be not then in doubt of its reaching (you): and We made it a guide to the Children of Israel. (33:3)


SECTION 2: The Allies’ Attack on Medina

9. O you who believe! Remember the Grace of God, (bestowed) on you, when there came down on you hosts (to overwhelm you): but We sent against them a hurricane and forces that you saw not: but God sees (clearly) all that you do. 10. Behold! They came on you from above you and from below you, and behold, the eyes became dim and the hearts gaped up to the throats, and you imagined various (vain) thoughts about God! 11. In that situation were the Believers tried: they were shaken as by a tremendous shaking.


12. And behold! The Hypocrites and those in whose hearts is a disease (even) say: “God and His Messenger promised us nothing but delusions!” 13. Behold! A party among them said: “You men of Yathrib! You cannot stand (the attack)! Therefore go back!” And a band of them ask for leave of the Prophet, saying, “Truly our houses are bare and exposed,” though they were not exposed: they intended nothing but to run away. 14. And if an entry had been effected to them from the sides of the (City), and they had been incited to sedition, they would certainly have brought it to pass, with none but a brief delay! 15. And yet they had already covenanted with God not to turn their backs, and a covenant with God must (surely) be answered for. 16. Say: “Running away will not profit you if you are running away from death or slaughter; and even if (you do escape), no more than a brief (respite) will you be allowed to enjoy!” 17. Say: “Who is it that can screen you from God if it be His wish to give you Punishment or to give you Mercy?” Nor will they find for themselves, besides God, any protector or helper. 18. Verily God knows those among you who keep back (men) and those who say to their brethren, “Come along to us”, but come not to the fight except for just a little while, 19. Covetous over you. Then when fear comes, you will see them looking to you, their eyes revolving, like (those of) one over whom hovers death: but when the fear is past, they will smite you with sharp tongues, covetous of goods. Such men have no faith, and so God has made their deeds of none effect: and that is easy for God. 20. They think that the Confederates have not withdrawn; and if the Confederates should come (again), they would wish they were in the deserts (wandering) among the Bedouins, and seeking news about you (from a safe distance); and if they were in your midst, they would fight but little.


SECTION 3: Allies’ Flight: Qurayẓah Punished


21. You have indeed in the Messenger of God a beautiful pattern (of conduct) for anyone whose hope is in God and the Final Day, and who engages much in the praise of God. 22. When the Believers saw the Confederate forces, they said: “This is what God and His Messenger had promised us, and God and His Messenger told us what was true.” And it only added to their faith and their zeal in obedience. 23. Among the Believers are men who have been true to their Covenant with God: of them some have completed their vow (to the extreme), and some (still) wait: but they have never changed (their determination) in the least: 24. That God may reward the men of Truth for their Truth, and punish the Hypocrites if that be His Will, or turn to them in Mercy: for God is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.


25. And God turned back the Unbelievers for (all) their fury: no advantage did they gain; and enough is God for the believers in their fight. And God is full of Strength, Able to enforce His Will. 26. And those of the People of the Book who aided them—God did take them down from their strongholds and cast terror into their hearts. (So that) some you slew, and some you made prisoners. 27. And He made you heirs of their lands, their houses, and their goods, and of a land which you had not frequented (before). And God has power over all things.

SECTION 4: The Prophet’s Domestic Simplicity

28. O Prophet! Say to your Consorts: “If it be that you desire the life of this world, and its glitter,—then come! I will provide for your enjoyment and set you free in a handsome manner. 29. But if you seek God and His Messenger, and the Home of the Hereafter, verily God has prepared for the well-doers amongst you a great reward. 30. O Consorts of the Prophet! If any of you were guilty of evident unseemly conduct, the Punishment would be doubled to her, and that is easy for God.


31. But any of you that is devout in the service of God and His Messenger, and works righteousness, — to her shall We grant her reward twice: and We have prepared for her a generous Sustenance. 32. O Consorts of the Prophet! You are not like any of the (other) women: if you do fear (God), be not too complacent of speech, lest one in whose heart is a disease should be moved with desire: but speak you a speech (that is) just. 33. And stay quietly in your houses, and make not a dazzling display, like that of the former Times of Ignorance; and establish regular prayer, and give regular charity; and obey God and His Messenger. And God only wishes to remove all abomination from you, you Members of the Family, and to make you pure and spotless. 34. And recite what is rehearsed to you in your homes, of the Signs of God and His Wisdom: for God understands the finest mysteries and is well-acquainted (with them).”


SECTION 5: The Prophet’s Marriage with Zaynab


35. For Muslim men and women, — for believing men and women, for devout men and women, for true men and women, for men and women who are patient and constant, for men and women who humble themselves, for men and women who give in charity, for men and women who fast (and deny themselves), for men and women who guard their chastity, and for men and women who engage much in God’s praise, — for them has God prepared forgiveness and great reward.


36. It is not fitting for a Believer, man or woman, when a matter has been decided by God and His Messenger, to have any option about their decision: if anyone disobeys God and His Messenger, he is indeed on a clearly wrong Path. 37. Behold! You did say to one who had received the grace of God and your favor: “Retain you (in wedlock) your wife, and fear God.” But you did hide in your heart that which God was about to make manifest: you did fear the people, but it is more fitting that you should fear God. Then when Zayd had dissolved (his marriage) with her, with the necessary (formality), We joined her in marriage to you: in order that (in future) there may be no difficulty to the Believers in (the matter of) marriage with the wives of their adopted sons, when the latter have dissolved with the necessary (formality) (their marriage) with them. And God’s command must be fulfilled. 38. There can be no difficulty to the Prophet in what God has indicated to him as a duty. It was the practice (approved) of God amongst those of old that have passed away. And the command of God is a decree determined. 39. (It is the practice of those) who preach the Messages of God, and fear Him, and fear none but God. And enough is God to call (men) to account. 40. Muḥammad is not the father of any of your men, but (he is) the Messenger of God, and the Seal of the Prophets: and God has full knowledge of all things.


For Muslim men and women, — for believing men and women, for devout men and women, for true men and women, for men and women who are patient and constant, for men and women who humble themselves, for men and women who give in charity, for men and women who fast (and deny themselves), for men and women who guard their chastity, and for men and women who engage much in God’s praise, — for them has God prepared forgiveness and great reward. (33:35)



SECTION 6: The Prophet’s Marriages


41. O you who believe! Celebrate the praises of God, and do this often; 42. And glorify Him morning and evening. 43. He it is Who sends blessings on you, as do His angels, that He may bring you out from the depths of Darkness into Light: and He is Full of Mercy to the Believers. 44. Their salutation on the Day they meet Him will be “Peace!”; and He has prepared for them a generous Reward.

45. O Prophet! Truly We have sent you as a Witness, a Bearer of Glad Tidings, and Warner, — 46. And as one who invites to God’s (Grace) by His leave, and as a Lamp spreading Light. 47. Then give the Glad Tidings to the Believers, that they shall have from God a very great Bounty. 48. And obey not (the behests) of the Unbelievers and the Hypocrites, and heed not their annoyances, but put your trust in God. For enough is God as a Disposer of affairs.


49. O you who believe! When you marry believing women, and then divorce them before you have touched them, no period of ‘Iddah have you to count in respect of them: so give them a present, and set them free in a handsome manner.


50. O Prophet! We have made lawful to you your wives to whom you have paid their dowers; and those whom your right hand possesses out of the prisoners of war whom God has assigned to you; and daughters of your paternal uncles and aunts, and daughters of your maternal uncles and aunts, who migrated (from Makkah) with you; and any believing woman who dedicates her soul to the Prophet if the Prophet wishes to wed her; — this only for you, and not for the Believers (at large); We know what We have appointed for them as to their wives and the captives whom their right hands possess;—in order that there should be no difficulty for you. And God is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful. 51. You may defer (the turn of) any of them that you please, and you may receive any you please: and there is no blame on you if you invite one whose (turn) you had set aside. This is closer to the cooling of their eyes, the prevention of their grief, and their satisfaction — that of all of them — with that which you have to give them: and God knows (all) that is in your hearts: and God is All-Knowing, Most Forbearing. 52. It is not lawful for you (to marry more) women after this, nor to change them for (other) wives, even though their beauty attracts you, except any your right hand should possess (as handmaidens): and God does watch over all things.


He it is Who sends blessings on you, as do His angels, that He may bring you out from the depths of Darkness into Light: and He is Full of Mercy to the Believers. (33:43)


SECTION 7: Rules of Conduct in Domestic Relations


53. O you who believe! Enter not the Prophet’s houses, — until leave is given you, — for a meal, (and then) not (so early as) to wait for its preparation: but when you are invited, enter; and when you have taken your meal, disperse, without seeking familiar talk. Such (behavior) annoys the Prophet: he is ashamed to dismiss you, but God is not ashamed (to tell you) the truth. And when you ask (his ladies) for anything you want, ask them from before a screen: that makes for greater purity for your hearts and for theirs.

Nor is it right for you that you should annoy God’s Messenger, or that you should marry his widows after him at any time. Truly such a thing is in God’s sight an enormity. 54. Whether you reveal anything or conceal it, verily God has full knowledge of all things. 55. There is no blame (on these ladies if they appear) before their fathers or their sons, their brothers, or their brothers’ sons, or their sisters’ sons, or their women, or the (slaves) whom their right hands possess. And, (ladies), fear God; for God is Witness to all things.


56. God and His Angels send blessings on the Prophet: O you that believe! Send your blessings on him, and salute him with all respect. 57. Those who annoy God and His Messenger — God has cursed them in this world and in the Hereafter, and has prepared for them a humiliating Punishment. 58. And those who annoy believing men and women undeservedly, bear (on themselves) a calumny and a glaring sin.


SECTION 8: Those Who Spread Evil Reports


59. O Prophet! Tell your wives and daughters, and the believing women, that they should cast their outer garments over their persons (when abroad): that is most convenient, that they should be known (as such) and not molested. And God is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful. 60. Truly, if the Hypocrites, and those in whose hearts is a disease, and those who stir up sedition in the City, desist not, We shall certainly stir you up against them: then will they not be able to stay in it as your neighbors for any length of time: 61. They shall have a curse on them: wherever they are found, they shall be seized and slain (without mercy). 62. (Such was) the practice (approved) of God among those who lived aforetime: no change will you find in the practice (approved) of God.


63. Men ask you concerning the Hour: say, “The knowledge thereof is with God (alone)”: and what will make you understand? — perchance the Hour is nigh! 64. Verily God has cursed the Unbelievers and prepared for them a blazing Fire, — 65. To dwell therein for ever: no protector will they find, nor helper. 66. The Day that their faces will be turned upside down in the Fire, they will say: “Woe to us! Would that we had obeyed God and obeyed the Messenger!” 67. And they would say: “Our Lord! We obeyed our chiefs and our great ones, and they misled us as to the (right) Path. 68. Our Lord! Give them double Penalty and curse them with a very great Curse!”


SECTION 9: An Exhortation to the Faithful


69. O you who believe! Be you not like those who vexed and insulted Moses, but God cleared him of the (calumnies) they had uttered: and he was honorable in God’s sight. 70. O you who believe! Fear God, and (always) say a word directed to the Right: 71. That He may make your conduct whole and sound and forgive you your sins: he that obeys God and His Messenger, has already attained the highest achievement.

72. We did indeed offer the Trust to the Heavens and the Earth and the Mountains; but they refused to undertake it, being afraid thereof: but man undertook it; — he was indeed unjust and foolish; — 73. (With the result) that God has to punish the Hypocrites, men and women, and the Unbelievers, men and women, and God turns in Mercy to the Believers, men and women: for God is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.