Today I want to share with you two verses and I’m going to compare them to each other. One belongs to 57th chapter, Al-Hadid and the other to the 64th chapter- At-Taghabun.
Both of them are very similar in their subject matters:
There is not a single calamity of any kind that ever strikes you in the earth nor inside of yourselves except that it is in a book that we have already declared it in. That is certainly easy for Allah to do. (57:22)
No calamity will strike you in the earth nor deep inside yourself except that it’s already been written down and it’s easy for Allah.
The second case is:
There is not a single calamity of any kind Allah will ever strike except by Allah’s permission, by Allah’s leave and whoever were to believe in Allah, Allah will guide their heart. And Allah is All-Knowledgeable about everything. (64:11)
So it’s interesting that in the first case when Allah says “Not a single calamity will strike you”, He added “not in the land and not deep inside yourselves.”
In chapter 64, He said not any calamity at all will strike except that it is by Allah’s permission. So He didn’t add that additional qualifier of “in the land and inside of yourselves”.
This is part of the beauty of the Quran in its sensitivity to context. Chapter 57, which is the one actually I want to talk to you about more.
By the way, in chapter 64, where Allah didn’t add “…not in the land not inside yourselves” is actually more brief in its account of faith. Chapter 57 is much more expansive.
And the previous verse:
You had better know that worldly life amongst to nothing more than games and entertainment and beautification and showing off to one another, and sharing the desire to have more when it comes to money and kids, like perfect rain that the farmer who planted the seed is impressed with, then it matures and you see it turn yellow, and then it will turn to crust and will be completely destroyed.
This entire parable, and after that:
Not a single calamity will strike you in the earth nor inside yourselves.
I appreciate the beauty of that. A lot Allah talked about what you like inside yourselves i.e. games, entertainment, beautification, showing off to each other, getting more and more in terms of money… isn’t it stuff you have inside yourselves?
And then you were compared to the earth, like a seed that’s planted in the earth and rain comes and the seed comes out… that elaborate picture that’s being painted, part of the verse is about the earth, and part of the verse is about yourself. How reflection on the earth is going to make you think about yourself.
In the very next verse, He says:
Not a single calamity will strike you in the earth and not inside yourselves except that Allah has decreed.
Look how beautifully the expressions are captured in the Quran and how they flow. Something that triggered in your mind, you’re thinking about it and Allah recaptures it in your mind, just for these very little expressions.
This was the place to say it. There is no parable, there is no analogy in chapter 64, there is no discussion about what’s going on deep inside of yourselves. That’s not the conversation there, so he didn’t mention it.
May Allah help us appreciate the beauty, the perfection, the majesty of this divine word.
May Allah enlighten our hearts and our very beings with it.