Surah al-Anbiyaa (Surah 21: Revelation Order 73)

Listening to a reminder paying no attention

  • There has approached their reckoning for the people while they are turning away (from it) in heedlessness (21:1). Not a reminder comes to them from their Lord, is new except they listen to it while they pay no attention to (21:2). Their minds are distracted, and they have concealed the private consultation of those who have wronged, “Is this not a human being like you? Do you then accept the magic while you see?” (21:3). He said, “My Lord knows the conversation in the heaven and the earth. He is the Hearer, the Knower.” (21:4). They said, “No, these are just evil dreams; no, he has invented it; no, he is a poet. Let him bring us a sign like what had been sent to the people of the previous generations.” (21:5). We have not destroyed them of any town had believed before of them, do they then believe? (21:6). And we have not sent before yourself (Muhammad) except men we inspire to them. So ask a people of the reminder, if you have not done to know (21:7). And we have not made them bodies not to eat the food, nor have they been immortals (21:8). Then we have fulfilled them the promise; so we have saved them and whomever we will but we have destroyed the transgressors (21:9). Certainly, we have sent down to you (all) a scripture, in it is your remembrance. Will you not then use intelligence? (21:10).
  • Note: God has confirmed that Quran is a reminder of these people like the reminder that was sent down for the previous generations while the people listen to it paying no attention. The messengers are human beings who have been sent with divine inspiration. So, it is neither made up nor what are in it are evil dreams. In fact, it is a reminder for a people who have understanding aware that the reckoning of people is approaching. According to the prediction based on facts from it, the world will end on 2280 A.D (1710 A.H). Hence, the survival of the world after the revelation of the Quran is calculated 1709 lunar years.

Destruction of the wicked generations

  • And how many a town have we destroyed as they were wicked, and we placed other people after them? (21:11). So when they perceived our retribution, they were fleeing from it (21:12). Do not flee but come back to the luxury given to you and to your homes, so that you may be questioned (21:13). They said, “Woe to us! We were really wicked.” (21:14). Such was their screaming that continued until we completely wiped them out (21:15).
  • Note: The destruction of many previous wicked generations should serve as warning for the subsequent generations of people.

Glorifying God night and day

  • And we have not created the heavens and the earth, and what is between them for amusement (21:16). If we have intended that we take as an amusement, certainly, we have taken it from us, if we have been doers (21:17). No, we cast with the truth against the falsehood that it breaks it, then when it is vanishing. And for you is the destruction for what you ascribe (21:18). And to Him whoever is in the heavens and the earth and whoever is around Him, they do not be arrogant as His servant, nor do they tire (21:19). They glorify the night and the day, they do not cease (21:20).
  • Note: God has created the heavens and the earth for a specific purpose, which is not clear to many but for sure, it is not for amusement. It is His plan to support truth against falsehood to vanish it. However, everything that belongs to God in the universe and those who are closer to Him, glorify Him night and day.

There is no god except God in the heavens and the earth

  • Or have they taken gods from the earth they can raise (the dead)? (21:21). If there had been gods in both of them except God, they would have ruined. So glory to God; Lord of the Throne, above what they attribute (21:22). He cannot be questioned about what He does, while they will be questioned (21:23).
  • Note: There is no other gods besides God in the heavens and the earth, otherwise, it would be a great disaster. So, all glory be to God, the Lord of the universe being possessor of the throne.

Quran is a reminder for the believers and the people of scripture

  • Or have they taken gods other than Him? Say: “Bring your proof. This is a reminder for whoever is with me and a reminder for whoever was before of me.” But most of them do not know the truth, so they are averse (21:24).
  • Note: Quran is a reminder for those who believe in it and also for those who believe in the previous scripture, but most people who do not know the truth turn away from it.

The core message sent with all messengers is the same

  • And we have not sent any messenger before yourself (Muhammad) except we inspire to him that there is no god except I, so you shall worship Me (21:25). But they said, “The Most Gracious has taken a son!” Glory is His. No, they are honored servants (21:26). They do not proceed with any word ahead of Him, and they act according to His command (21:27). He knows their past and their future. They do not intercede, except for whoever He has permitted, and they are fearful from His fear (21:28). And whoever of them says, “Indeed, I am a god other than Him.” Then that we will recompense him Hell like that we recompense the wicked (21:29).
  • Note: God has not sent any messenger without inspiration and the core message has always been the same that you shall worship Him. There is no distinction between them as all of them are His honored servants. They do not have their own mission while they act according to His command. They will not intercede rather they will be worried from fear of Him.

Creation of the universe with all needed to support life

  • Do those who disbelieved not see that the heavens and the earth were a single unit, then we parted them? And we made every living thing from water. Will they not then believe? (21:30). And we have placed mountains in the earth, lest it trembles with them, and we have made wide pathways in it so that they may be guided (21:31). And we made the sky a protective ceiling, yet they turn away from its signs (21:32). And He is the One who created the night and the day, and the sun and the moon; each is floating in an orbit (21:33). And we have not made the immortality for any human before yourself (Muhammad); so if you have died, then would they be the immortals? (21:34). Every person will be tasting of the death, and we test you with the bad and the good in the trial, while to us you will be returned (21:35).
  • Note: God has created the universe with all that are needed to support life in the earth as well as to test us. Both adversity and prosperity are included in the test giving mortality to each soul. Then each soul will be returned to Him with what it has earned. The Big Bang theory and the evolution of life in the earth are fully supported.

The promised day will come to the disbelievers all on a sudden

  • And when has seen you of those who have disbelieved, they do not accept you except in ridicule: “Is this the one who mentions of your gods?” And they are whom are disbelievers in a reminder of the Most Gracious (21:36). The human being has been created from haste. I will show you My signs that you do not ask Me to hasten (21:37). And they say, “When will be the promise of this, if you have been truthful?” (21:38). If he knows of those who have disbelieved that when they will not be able to protect the Fire from their faces, nor from their backs, nor will they be helped (21:39). No, it will come to them suddenly, then they are stunned. They will neither be able to avoid it, nor will they be given any respite (21:40).
  • Note: The promised day must come but it will come to the disbelievers suddenly when they cannot protect them from the Fire nor will they be helped nor will they be given respite.

Consequence of ridiculing messengers

  • And certainly, has been mocked of messengers before yourself (Muhammad), then has surrounded of those who have mocked from them what they have done to mock with it (21:41). Say, “Who can protect you from the Most Gracious during the night or during the day?” No, they are turning away from the reminder of their Lord (21:42). Or for them are there gods to protect them from us? They cannot be able to help themselves, nor can they protect (others) from us (21:43). We have provided for these people and their ancestors until they reached to an old age. Do they not see that we bring the earth closer to its end? Can they then be the winners? (21:44). Say, “I (Muhammad) only warn you with the revelation.” But the deaf cannot hear the call, when they are warned (21:45). When a trace of your Lord’s retribution touches them, they will say, “We were really wicked.” (21:46). And we will set up the scales of the justice on a day of the Resurrection. So no soul will be wronged in anything. Even if there has been weight of a mustard seed, we will bring of it. And it has sufficed of us as reckoners (21:47).
  • Note: Ridiculing messengers or turning away from the reminder when it comes from the Most Gracious has occurred among all generations of people disregarding the warning behaving like a deaf while the scale of justice will be set up to bring them into equitable judgment.

Moses and Aaron were given statute book, light and reminder

  • And we had given Moses and Aaron the statute book, a light, and a reminder for the righteous (21:48). Those who fear their Lord in the unseen, and they are the fearful of the Hour (21:49). And this is a blessed reminder we have sent down it. Are you then be deniers of it? (21:50). And certainly, we had given Abraham guidance of him before, and we had been Knower of him (21:51).
  • Note: Quran is a reminder while before it has been the reminder what was given to Moses and Aaron and before them has been a guidance what was given to Abraham for the righteous.

History of Abraham

  • When he said to his father and his people, “What are these statues to which you are devoted?” (21:52). They said, “We found our forefathers worshipers of them.” (21:53). He said, “Certainly, you have been and your forefathers in clear astray.” (21:54). They said, “Have you come to us with the truth, or are you among the mockers?” (21:55). He said, “Nay, your Lord is Lord of the heavens and the earth, Who has created them, and I am on that is one of the witnesses (21:56). And by God, I have a plan to deal with your statues after you go away, turning back.” (21:57). He broke them into pieces, except for the largest of them so that they may refer to it on their return (21:58). They said, “Who has done this with our gods? Indeed, he is surely one of the wicked.” (21:59). They said, “We have heard a youth mentioning of them; he is called Abraham.”(21:60). And they said, “So, bring him before the eyes of the people so that they may bear witness.” (21:61). They said, “Have you done this with our gods, O Abraham?” (21:62). He said, ” No, someone did it. Here is the largest one of them, so ask them, if they can speak.” (21:63). Then they were taken back and said to themselves, “Indeed, you yourselves are the wicked.” (21:64). Then they were returned with their ideas: “You know full well that they do not speak.” (21:65). He said, “Do you then worship besides God what does not benefit you any how nor harm you? (21:66). Fie on you and on what you worship beside God! Do you not understand?” (21:67). They said, “Burn him and support your gods, if you have been doers.” (21:68). We had said, “O fire, be cool and safe on Abraham.” (21:69). Thus, they schemed against him, but we made them the worst losers (21:70). And we had saved him, and Lot to the land that we had blessed in it the people of the world (21:71).
  • Note: Abraham asked his people not to worship statues but they rejected his call. Then he broke all their statues except the biggest one. When he was accused of doing this, he told them to ask about the broken ones pointing to the biggest one which was still there. When they presented their logic that they cannot speak, he asked them then why you worshiped those other than God that cannot harm or benefit you. Then God saved him when his people placed in the fire to burn him. He also saved Lot but destroyed his wicked people.

    God gave Isaac and Jacob to Abraham as a gift

    • And we had granted to him Isaac, and Jacob as a gift, and each we had made righteous (21:72). We had made them leaders who had guided with our commandments, and we had inspired to them doing of the good deeds, and of establishing the salat prayer and of giving the alms, and they had been worshipers of us (21:73).
    • Note: God favored Abraham and gave him Isaac and Jacob as a gift, who were made imams.

    History of Lot and Noah

    • And Lot, we had given him wisdom and knowledge, and we had saved him from the town which had done to commit wicked deeds; indeed, they had been a people of evil, disobedient (21:74). And we had admitted him into our mercy as he was among the righteous (21:75). And Noah when he had called before, then we had responded to him, so we had saved him and his family from the great disaster (21:76). And we supported him against the people who had denied our revelations. They had been a people of evil, so we had drowned them all (21:77).
    • Note: God saved Lot from the town which had done to practice wicked things. Noah was saved from a great disaster.

    History of David and Solomon

    • And David and Solomon, when they judged about the field when a sheep of a people had pastured in it, and we had been witnesses to their judgment (21:78). So we had given Solomon to understand it, and to each we had given wisdom and knowledge. And we had committed the mountains and the birds to glorify our praises with David. And we had been doers (21:79). And we had taught him the making of armor for you to protect you in your battle. Will you then be thankful? (21:80). And to Solomon, the gusting wind blown by his command to the land which we had blessed in it, and we are knowers of everything (21:81). And of the devils who would dive for him and would do other tasks, while we were their guardians (21:82).
    • Note: David and Solomon were given good judgment, while mountains and birds were given under disposal of David, and the devils and winds were given under disposal of Solomon.

    History of Job, Ismail, Idris, Dhul- Kifl, Dhul-Nun, Zakariya and Mary

    • And Job when he called his Lord that the adversity has touched me and you have mercy, the Merciful one. (21:83). Then we responded to him, so we removed what was with him of adversity. And we gave him his family like of theirs with them as a mercy from ourselves, and a reminder for the worshippers (21:84). And Ismail, and Idris, and Dhul-Kifl; all were among the patient ones (21:85). We admitted them into our mercy, they were among the righteous ones (21:86). And Dhul-Nun (Jonah) when he had abandoned being angry, then he had thought that we do not have authority over him. Then he had called in the darkness that there is no god except You. Glory is Yours. Indeed, I have been among the wicked.” (21:87). So we had responded to him, and saved him from the distress; thus, we save the believers (21:88). And Zakariya, when He had called to his Lord: “My Lord, do not leave me without an heir, and You are the best inheritor.” (21:89). So we had responded to him and had granted him John; we had cured his wife for him. They had been to hasten in the good deeds, and they would call us in hope and fear. And they had been reverent to us (21:90). And the one who protected her chastity, so we blew into her from our spirit, and we made her and her son a sign for all the people (21:91).
    • Note: The affliction was removed from Job. Ismail, Idris and Dhul-Kifl were admitted into His mercy. Dhul-Nun who called in the darkness was saved from the distress. Zakariya was granted John. Mary and Jesus, son of Mary were made a sign for all the people referring to Mary and Jesus without mentioning them by name. It is also noteworthy that Jesus has been mentioned 25 times by name in the Quran which is exactly equal to the number of times Adam has been mentioned by name confirming that the creation of Jesus is as same as the creation of Adam as per God is concern.

    One god/one community/one religion

    • This is your community, one community and I am your Lord, so you shall worship Me (21:92). But they divided themselves into their affair. All will return to us (21:93). So whoever does the righteous deeds while he is a believer, then there is no refusal of his effort, and indeed, we are recorders for him (21:94). And there is prohibition for a town we have destroyed it that they will not return (21:95).
    • Note: Those who obey God and worship Him is one community. But people have divided themselves into different communities making them accountable to Him on their return to Him.

    Appearance of Gog and Magog

    • Until when Gog and Magog have appeared, and they will descend from every height (21:96). And the truthful promise has approached when those who disbelieved stare in horror: “Woe to us! we had been heedless to it. Indeed, we were wicked.” (21:97).
    • Note: The appearance of Gog and Magog is a sign that the truthful promise has approached. Thus, their appearance is connected with the end of the world, and is one of many signs when the world will come to an end. It is noteworthy that Gog and Magog occur in surah al-Kahf 18:94 consisting of 110 verses and in surah al-Anbiyaa-a 21:96 consisting of 112 verses, precisely 17 verses before the end of each surah, representing 17 lunar centuries (1700 AH) while there is a prediction from the Quran that the world will end on 1710 AH (2280 AD). It also indicates that Gog and Magog are corruptors of the earth who will be allowed to continue their evil activities at least 10 years before the end of the world. However, on the day, the disbelievers will realize that they were heedless to it, while they will stare in horror.

    Final destination

    • Indeed, you and what you worship other than God will be fuel of Hell; you will be arrivers to it (21:98). If those had been gods, they would not have entered it and all will be dwellers in it forever (21:99). They will sigh therein, and they will not hear therein (21:100). But for those who deserved the reward from us, they will be protected from it (21:101). They will not hear any sound of it, and they will be in what their soul desires abiding forever (21:102). The great horror will not grieve them, but the angels will receive them: “This is your day, which you were promised.” (21:103).
    • Note: Those who have worshiped other than God will be fuel of Hell wherein they will abide forever while those who have deserved reward from God will be protected from it as well as will be received by the angels.

    The righteous servants of God will inherit the new earth

    • A day we will fold the heaven like a folding of the scroll for the scriptures. Like that we had begun a first creation, we will repeat it, is a promise upon us. Indeed, we have been doers (21:104). And we have mentioned in the Psalms, after the reminder (given to Moses and Aaron) that the earth – the righteous servants of Me will inherit it (21:105).
    • Note: On a day of the Judgment the heaven will be recreated and the righteous servant of God will inherit the new earth.

    God is One who is sought by His worshipers to get help

    • Indeed, in this (Quran), certainly, there is a message for a people of worshipers (21:106). And we have not sent you (Muhammad) (it) except a mercy for a people of the world (21:107). Say, “Indeed, it is inspired to me that your god is One god, then will you be submitters?” (21:108). So, if they have turned away, then say, “I have announced to you on alike, and I do not know is it near or far what you are promised?” (21:109). He knows the declaration of the statement and He knows what you conceal (21:110). And I do not know that it is a test for you and an enjoyment for a while.” (21:111). He said, “My Lord, judge with the truth and our Lord is the Gracious, the One who is sought to get help against what you attribute.” (21:112).
    • Note: Quran is a message for a people of worshipers while this is a mercy for all the people. So, anyone can use it to have mercy of God while the role of the prophet was to deliver the message containing warning for the people and he had no knowledge of the promised day whether it is near or far. God is the Gracious Who is sought by His worshipers to get help.


    There are 112 verses in the surah al-Anbiyaa-a (the Prophets) and the most significant aspects that are covered in the sura are: (1) listening to the reminder paying no attention, (2) history of destruction of the wicked generations, (3) glorifying God night and day, (4) There is no god except God in the heavens and the earth, (5) Quran is a reminder for the followers of it as well as the followers of the previous scripture, (6) a core message sent with all messengers in the same, (7) creation of the universe with all needed to support life in the earth, (8) promise day will come suddenly to the disbelievers, (9) consequence of ridiculing messengers, (10) there has been reminder and guidance before Quran, (11) A short history of some messengers, (12) one god/one community/one religion, (13) appearance of Gog and Magog, (14) final destination, (15) recreation of the universe, (16) role of messenger and (17) God is One who is sought by His worshipers to get help.

    In the history of messengers what has been highlighted are: Abraham was given Isaac and Jacob as a gift and he was saved from fire, Lot was saved from the evil and disobedient people while his people were destroyed, Noah was saved from the great disaster while his people were drowned, mountains and birds were given under disposal of David while the devils and winds were given under disposal of Solomon, the affliction was removed from Job, Dhul-Nun (Jonah) was saved from the distress, Zachariah was given John, and Mary and her son, Jesus were made a sign for all the people.

    God has created the universe with all that are needed to support life in the earth to test us that support modern science research findings: the Big Bang Theory and origin of life from water. On the day of judgment the universe will be recreated and the earth will be inherited by His worshipers.

    Zul-Qarnain is only mentioned in surah 18, while Gog and Magog are mentioned in surahs 18 and 21 connected to the end of the world. The advent of Zul-Qarnain, and appearance of Gog and Magog is a final sign that the world is coming to an end. In addition to the year the world will end, there are mathematical confirmations for both the advent of Zul-Qarnain just before the end of the world with every means and the appearance of Gog and Magog 10 years before the end of the world. We are blessed to have the information that the world will end on 2280 A.D (1710 A.H). Hence, the survival of the world after the revelation of the Quran is 1709 lunar years as calculated from the seven pairs of signs and the great Quran (15:87) unveiled through a messenger of God being it His system.

    Quran has repeatedly been mentioned as a reminder in this surah and also a mercy for all the people while the previous scripture was also a reminder for the respective generations of people before it. Thus, Quran is not only a reminder for the believers but also for the people of the previous scripture confirming one god, one community and one religion for all the people of the world. God may help us all to work towards this goal just following only one divine source to make this happen when our reckoning is not too far from now as we are blessed to know its time.
    Peaceful Friday, salaam and God bless.
    Tafazzal (8/12/2016).