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Review of instances of is’taqaamu and its derived in Quran

Introduction

God has repeatedly told us in the Quran that He guides whomever He wills, while His guidance is the true guidance (2:120 and 6:71). He increases the guidance of those who have accepted guidance (19:76) and has also made it clear that we cannot guide whoever we love while He is knower of the guided ones (28:56):

[2:120] Neither the Jews nor the Christians be pleased with you (prophet), unless you follow their religion. Say, “Indeed, God’s guidance is the true guidance (inna hudaa allahi huwa al-hudaa).” And if you had followed their desires after what has come to you (prophet) of the knowledge, there is not a protector nor a helper for you against God.

[6:71] Say: “Can we call on other than God what cannot benefit us nor harm us, and we can turn back on our heels after God has guided us?” Like the one whom the devils have enticed to confusion in the earth, he has friends who call him to the guidance: “Come to us!” Say, “God’s guidance is the true guidance (inna hudaa allahi huwa al-hudaa), and we have been commanded that we submit to Lord of the worlds.”

[19:76] And God increases guidance of those who have accepted guidance, and the everlasting good deeds are better for reward with your Lord and are better for return.
Note: Here is an indication of the gradual growth of our souls through contribution of our good deeds.

[28:56] Indeed, you (prophet) cannot guide whomever you love. But God guides whomever He wills, and He is Knower of the guided ones.
Note: Here is a reference for us either if we share the truth with our relatives and friends, its acceptance or rejection depends on God as He knows what is in their hearts and those who deserve guidance.

Thus, what would be straight for us or what is straight for us should not be unknown to us if we truly believe in God and are certain about the Hereafter. However, there are 51 instances of is’taqaamu and its derived in three different grammatical forms as shown in the table below can deepen our hearts about it eliminating any confusion being the information very straightforward, even reflecting to that the Satan will do its utmost to prevent us to go to the straight path, which is our Lord’s path:

Form Instances Arabic text Literal meaning No of occurrences Grammatical form
1 is’taqaamu ٱسْتَقَٰمُ To be straight 10 verb form X
2 aqwam أَقْوَم straight 4 noun
3 mus’taqeem مُّسْتَقِيم straight 37 active participle X

Note: The above table is populated with the data obtained from the Quran.com.

Instances of is’taqaamu (ٱسْتَقَٰمُ)

There are 10 instances of is’taqaamu in the verb form X meaning “to be straight” found in 9 verses across 8 surahs in the Quran, are described below that may help us confirm what would be straight for us reflecting God’s words in the guidance in different contexts:

[9:7] How would it be for the idol worshipers of a treaty with God and His messenger except those whom you have made a treaty at the Sacred Masjid? As long as they have been straight to you, so long you shall be straight to them (fa-maa is’taqaamu lakum fa-is’taqeemuu lahum). Indeed, God loves the righteous.

[10:89] He said, “Certainly, has been answered both of your invocation, so both of you shall be straight (qad ujeebat da`watukumma fa-is’taqeemaa), and you do not follow a path of those who do not know.”

[11:112] So you (prophet) shall be straight as you (prophet) have been commanded, and whoever turns with you (prophet) (fa-is’taqim kamaa umir’ta wa-man taaba ma`aka), and you do not transgress. Indeed, He is Seer of what you do.

[41:6] Say, “I am only a human being like yourselves; it is inspired to me that your god is One god. So you shall be straight to Him and shall ask His forgiveness (fa-is’taqeemuu ilayhi wa-is’tagh’firuuhu).” And woe to the idolaters.
Note: The information in the verse is very crucial for all of us to understand that worshipping God alone and asking His forgiveness without associating partner(s) with Him is a straight path to our Lord.

[41:30] Indeed, those who have said: “Our Lord is God”; then they have been straight – descends upon them the angels (rabbanaa allahu thumma is’taqaamuu tatanazzalu `alayhimu al-malaaikatu) that you do not fear, nor do you grieve, and you shall receive a good news of the Paradise which you have been promised.
Note: Those who said that their Lord is God and have been straight, the angels give them a good news of a Paradise that God has promised.

[42:15] As for that then you (prophet) shall invite and shall be straight as you have been commanded (fa-li’dhaalika fa-ud’`u  wa-is’taqim kamaa umir’ta), and you do not follow their desires and shall say, “I have believed in what God has sent down of scripture, and I have been commanded that I do justice between yourselves. God is our Lord and your Lord. To us is our deeds and to you is your deeds. There is no argument between ourselves and between yourselves. God will gather ourselves, and to Him is the final return.”
Note: God has commanded His prophet to invite and to be straight as well as to believe in what God has sent down of scripture.

[46:13] Indeed, those who have said, “Our Lord is God;” then they have been straight (rabbunaa allahu thumma is’taqaamuu), then there is no fear on them, nor do they grieve.

[72:16] And that if they had been straight on the way (wa-allawi is’taqaamuu `alaa al-tareeqati), surely, we would have given them abundance water.

[81:28] For whoever among you wishes that he can be straight (liman shaa-a min’kum an yas’taqeema).

Instances of aqwam (أَقْوَم)

4 instances of aqwam in the Quran in the noun form meaning “straight” found in 4 verses across 4 surahs, are described below that may help us confirm what is straight for us reflecting God’s words:

[2:282] O you who have believed, when you have contracted of a debt for a fixed period, then you shall write it. And let write a scribe between yourselves with the justice, while a scribe cannot refuse to write as God has taught him. So let him write, and let the one on him is the right dictate. And let him fear God his Lord and let not him diminish anything from it. Then if it has been the one on him is the right of limited understanding, or weak or is not capable that he can dictate, then let dictate his guardian with the justice. And you shall call to witness two witnesses among your men; then if there would not be two men, then a man and two women from whoever you accept of the witnesses that one of the two errs, then one of the two will remind the other, and cannot refuse the witnesses when they are called nor would they be weary that you write it, either a small or a large for its term. That is just at God and is straight for the evidence (dhaalikum aqsatu `inda allahi wa-aqwama lil’shahaadati), and nearer that you do not doubt except that a transaction would be on the spot, you carry out between yourselves, then there is sin on you that you do not write it. And you shall take witness when you have made commercial transaction. And neither a scribe nor a witness could be harmed, and if you do, then it is an evil behavior for you, while you shall fear God.  And God teaches you and God is Knower of everything.

[4:46] Of those who have turned to Jews, they distort the word from its places and they say, “We have heard and we have disobeyed,” and you shall hear not to be a hearer and you shall see twisting with their tongues and defaming in the religion. And if that they had said, “We have heard and we have obeyed, and you shall hear and shall look at us;” surely, it would have been better for them and straight (la’kaana khayran lahum wa-aqwama). But God has cursed them at their disbelief. So, they do not believe except a few.
Note: God has cursed the Jews for their disobedience, disbelief and evil behavior, so they do not believe except a few.

[17:9] Indeed this, the Quran guides to that which is straight (inna haadhaa al-qur’aana yahdee lillatee hiya aq’wamu), and gives a good news to the believers those who do the righteous deeds that for them there is a great reward.
Note: The Quran guides to a straight path and gives good news of a great reward to the believers who do the righteous deeds is a very straightforward command that none should overlook or miss it.

[73:6] Indeed, rising of the night, which is hard effort, while is straight for recitation (inna naashiata al-layli hiya ashaddu watan wa-aq’wamu qeelan).
Note: Prophet was asked to mediate at night with the Quran to be straight making an effort of rising at night, even it is difficult; and God has addressed the prophet in the surah 73 as the cloaked one being wrapped by the Quran, while He has addressed the messenger of covenant in the surah 74 as the hidden one to come out to purify the Quran and the religious rites in practice being his garments. As evidence if the total # of verses in both surahs is added, it is a multiple of 19 (20+56=76=19X4).

Instances of mus’taqeem (مُّسْتَقِيم)

There are 37 instances of mus’taqeem in the Quran in the active participle form (noun/adjective) meaning “straight” found in 37 verses across 24 surahs, which are very direct described below that may help us confirm what is straight for us reflecting God’s words in the guidance in different contexts:

Noun

[6:126] And this (Quran) is a straight path to your Lord (wa-haadhaa siraatu rabbika mus’taqeeman). Certainly, we have explained the revelations for a people who take heed.
Note: Here is a direct commandment from God that Quran is a straight path to our Lord, which has been explained in detail that we can take heed being the command very straightforward.

[6:153] And that this is My path, is a straight one (wa-anna haadhaa siraati-i mus’taqeeman). So you shall follow it, and you do not follow the other paths that they part of you from His path. That He has enjoined you with it so that you may fear (Him).

[10:25] And God calls to an abode of the peace and guides whomever He wills to a straight path (wa-yahdii man yashaau ilaa siraatin mus’taqeemin).

[11:56] Indeed, I (Hud) have put trust upon God, my Lord and your Lord. There is not a creature except He is seizing of its forelock. Indeed, my Lord is on a straight path (inna rabbii `alaa siraatin mus’taqeemin).

[15:41] He (God) said, “This is a straight path upon Me (haadhaa siraatun `alayya mus’taqeemun)”.

[16:76] And God has set an example of two men – one of them is dumb, he does not have power over anything, while he is a burden on his master. Wherever he directs him, he cannot come with anything good. Does equal he and whoever commands with the justice and he is on a straight path (hal yastawii wa-man yamaru bil-`ad’li wa-huwa `alaa siraatin mus’taqeemin)?

[16:121] He (Ibrahim) has been thankful for His favors. He (God) has chosen him and has guided him to a straight path (ij’tabaahu wa-hadaahu ilaa siraatin mus’taqeemin).

[19:36] And indeed, God is my (Jesus) Lord and your Lord; so you shall worship Him. This is a straight path (haadhaa siraatun mus’taqeemun).”

[22:54] And that it may know those who have been given the knowledge that it is the truth from your Lord, so they believe in it, then it may be humble their hearts to it. And indeed, God surely is a Guide of those who have believed to a straight path (wa-inna allaha la’haadi alladheena aamanuu ilaa siraatin mus’taqeemin).
Note: What has been revealed through Muhammad is the truth from God and He is a Guide of those who have believed to a straight path.

[22:67] For every nation we have made rite, they should be of its observant. So, they should not dispute with you (prophet) in the matter, and you (prophet) shall invite to your Lord. Indeed, you are surely on a straight guidance (innaka la’`alaa hudan mus’taqeemin).
Note: Here is a confirmation from God’s words that prophet invited people to a straight path with God’s words, and if he had invited people with his words as invented after his death, it would not be to a straight path.

[23:73] And indeed, you (prophet) surely call them to a straight path (wa-innaka la’tad’`uuhum ilaa siraatin mus’taqeemin).

[24:46] Certainly, we have sent down clear revelations, while God guides whomever He wills to a straight path (wal-lahu yahdee man yashaau ilaa siraatin mus’taqeemin).

[26:182] And you shall weigh with the balance of the straight (wa-zinuu bil-qis’taasi al-mus’taqeemi).

[36:4] On a straight path (`alaa siraatin mus’taqeemin).

[36:61] And that you shall worship Me; This is a straight path (haadhaa siraatun mus’taqeemun).

[42:52] And thus that we have inspired to you (prophet) an inspiration by our command. You have not been to know what the scripture was nor what was the faith. And we have made it a light; we guide with it whomever we will of our servants. Indeed, you surely guide to a straight path (wa-innaka la’tahdee ilaa siraatin mus’taqeemin).
Note: Muhammad had no knowledge of the scripture and the faith, but has been inspired to him by God while he has been given a light to guide to a straight path. Thus, not he as a person but a light given to him guides to a straight path.

[43:43] So you (prophet) shall hold fast to that which has been revealed to you; indeed, you (prophet) are on a straight path (innaka `alaa siraatin mus’taqeemin).
Note: Muhammad has been on a straight path as he held fast to what has been revealed to him, is also a clear indication that hadiths and sunnah assigned to him after his death or sharia and ijma as invented down the generations are fabrications and great lies being the satanic tricks to send humans to astray while God has warned us the Satan being our ardent enemy of human beings.

[43:61] And indeed, he (Jesus) is surely a sign for the Hour. So you do not doubt about it and you shall follow Me; this is a straight path (haadhaa siraatun mus’taqeemun).
Note: Jesus’s date of birth as recorded is a marker to determine the time of the end of the world, there is no doubt about it, and to follow our Lord is a straight path for all of us.

[43:64] Indeed God, He is my (Jesus) Lord and your Lord, so you shall worship Him; this is a straight  path (haadhaa siraatun mus’taqeemun).

[46:30] They said, “O our people; indeed, we have heard a scripture has been revealed after Moses, confirming that which was its before to guide to the truth and to a straight path (musaddiqan limaa bayna yadayhi yahdee ilaa al-haqqi wa-ilaa tareeqin mus’taqeemin).

[48:2] That God may forgive for you (Muhammad) what has preceded of your sins and what would have followed, and may perfect His favor upon you and may guide you to a straight path (wa-yahdiyaka siraatan mus’taqeeman).
Note: God guides His prophet to a straight path perfecting His blessing upon him even forgiving his past and future sins, is a clear indication that anyone whoever he may be cannot be in better place in the Hereafter unless his Lord forgives him, and also a good news for any true believers being God is an equitable Judge.

[48:20] God has promised you (all) abundant spoils of war you will take, thus He has hastened this for you and has withheld the people’s hands against you; that it may be a sign for the believers and that He may guide you to a straight path (wa-yahdiyakum siraatan mus’taqeeman).
Note: The victory of the believers is a sign that God guides the believers to a straight path.

Adjective

[1:6] Guide us to the straight path (ih’dinaa al-siraata al-mus’taqeem);
Note: Salat is a prime source of nourishing our soul and we must practice it in a way that our prayer is responded by our Lord being our Guide and Helper (25:31) otherwise it would be just uttering of some Arabic words and movement of body through standing, bowing and prostrating.

[2:142] The fools among the people will say, “What has turned them from their direction of prayer, which they have done towards it?” Say, “To God belongs the east and the west; He guides whomever He wills to a straight path (yahdee man yashaau ilaa siraatin mus’taqeemin).”

[2:213] The people had been one community as God has raised up the prophets as bearers of good news and warners, and has revealed with them the scripture with the truth to judge between the people in what they have differed in it. And has not differed in it except those who have been given it after what has come to them the clear proofs due to jealousy between themselves. Then God has guided those who have believed that which they have differed in it of the truth with His permission. And God guides whomever He wills to a straight path (wa-allahu yahdee man yashaau ilaa siraatin mus’taqeemin).
Note: God has given us scripture with the truth to seek a straight path with Him as well as to judge any disputes among the people while He has defined the term, prophet associating scripture with it that we can make a clear distinction between prophet and messenger, and if we do not understand a clear difference we are not to a straight path.

[3:51] Indeed, God is my (Jesus) Lord and your Lord. So you shall worship Him. This is a straight path (haadhaa siraatun mus’taqeemun).
Note: Jesus said to his disciples that God is his Lord and their Lord, thus worshipping Him is a straight path, while his disciples down the generations have invented trinity and monasticism, which is no way a straight path for them.

[3:101] How do you disbelieve, while is recited God’s revelations upon you and His messenger is among you? And whoever holds fast to God; then certainly, he has been guided to a straight path (fa-qad hudiya ilaa siraatin mus’taqeemin).
Note: God’s messenger recited His revelations to his contemporaries to hold fast to God to be guided to a straight path.

[4:68] And surely, we would have guided them to a straight path (wa-la’hadaynaahum siraatan mus’taqeeman).

[4:175] So, as for those who have believed in God, and have held fast to Him, then He will admit them into mercy from Him and bounty, and will guide them to Him to a straight path (wa-yahdeehim ilayhi siraatan mus’taqeeman).
Note: Those who hold fast to God, He admits them into His mercy and guides them to a straight while the scripture and the religion are two handles to hold fast to him

[5:16] God guides with it (Quran) whoever has sought His pleasure to ways of the peace; and He brings them out of the darkness into the light by His permission, and guides them to a straight path (wa-yahdeehim ilaa siraatin mus’taqeemin).
Note: Those who seek God’s pleasure, He guides them with His guidance (Quran) to a straight path bringing them out of the darkness into the light.

[6:39] And those who have denied in our revelations are deaf and dumb being in the darknesses. Whomever God wills, He sends him astray, and whomever He wills, He places him on a straight path (yaj`alhu `alaa siraatin mus’taqeemin).
Note: Those who have denied God’s revelations are deaf and dumb, and for being in darkness God does not help them to find a straight path.

[6:87] And from their fathers, and their descendants, and their brothers; and we have chosen them and we have guided them to a straight path (wa-hadaynaahum ilaa siraatin mus’taqeemin).
Note: God guides those who are chosen by Him to a straight path if they follow what is given to them.

[6:161] Say (Muhammad), “Indeed me, has guided me my Lord to a straight path (innani-i, hadaani-i rabbi-i ilaa siraatin mus’taqeemin), an established religion – a religion of Abraham, monotheism. And he has not been with the idolaters.”
Note: God guides His prophet to a straight path, an established religion – a religion of Abraham, monotheism; thus, whoever believes that Muhammad is a founder of Islam, then he is not to be a straight path, and he cannot reach his destination even with his certain good works.

[7:16] He (Satan) said, “As for that You have sent me astray; surely, I will sit for them in Your path, the straight (la’aq’`udanna lahum siraataka al-mus’taqeeman).

[37:118] And we have guided both of them (Moses and Aaron) to the straight path (wa-hadaynaahumaa al-siraata al-mus’taqeema).

[67:22] Does he then whoever walks fallen upon his face in better guidance, or does he whoever walks smooth on a straight path (amman yamshee sawiyyan `alaa siraatin mus’taqeemin)?
Note: He is in better guidance who walks smooth on a straight path rather than walking on an uneven path falling on his face.

In conclusion, God has given His clear revelation to His prophet to hold fast to it as a straight path for himself while He has clearly mentioned the Quran to be straight for the believers who do the righteous deeds to have a great reward with Him being the handle to hold fast to Him, and also to the religion established with Abraham, a monotheist Muslim and a father of our religion, and the commandment is so straightforward to understand that none can get lost or miss it being the true believers in God as well as the Hereafter reflecting that God’s guidance is the true guidance, and there is no protector nor a helper for us other than Him.
Peaceful Friday, salaam and God bless.
Tafazzal (11/05/2021).