THE Quran is the book of God. It has been preserved in its entirety since its revelation to the Prophet of Islam between 610 and 632 A.D. It is a book that brings glad tidings to mankind, along with divine admonition, and stresses the importance of man’s discovery of the Truth on a spiritual and intellectual level.

Translated from Arabic and commentary
by Maulana Wahiduddin Khan

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

When the hypocrites come to you, they say, ‘We bear witness that you are indeed the Messenger of God.’ God knows that you are indeed His Messenger, but God bears witness that the hypocrites are surely liars — (63: 1)

It is a sign of hypocrisy if an individual indulges in tall talk and resorts to swearing oaths to reassure others of the truth of his words. A sincere man is subdued out of fear of God. He speaks more from his heart than from his tongue. A hypocrite is eager for people to hear his voice, while a sincere man is eager that God hear his voice.

— they use their oaths as a cover and thus they bar others from God’s way: what they have been doing is truly evil — that is because they believed and then rejected their faith: their hearts are sealed up, so that they are devoid of understanding. (63: 2-3)

When a man embraces the faith, he makes a sincere vow. Thereafter, practical occasions arise in life when he is required to act according to his vow. On such occasions, one who hears the voice of his heart and fulfils the requirements of his vow, has in effect revived and confirmed his vow of faith. On the contrary, ignoring his inner voice and breaching his vow will eventually make him insensitive about his vow of faith. This is the meaning of ‘their hearts are sealed up’.

When you see them, their outward appearance pleases you; when they speak, you listen to what they say. But they are like propped up blocks of timber. They think that every shout is directed against them. They are the [real] enemies, so beware of them. The curse of God be upon them! How they turn away! When they are told, ‘Come! The Messenger of God will ask forgiveness for you!’ they turn their heads away and you see them walking away arrogantly.

It makes no difference whether you ask forgiveness for them or not. God will not forgive them: God does not guide such rebellious people. (63: 4-6)

A hypocrite protects his interests by his compromising and selfinterested approach. He does not discriminate between right and wrong. However, he maintains good relations with everybody and speaks as though he is interested in their welfare. Everyone finds him agreeable. But these apparently ‘fresh green trees’ are in reality ‘dry sticks.’ To the hypocrite, worldly interest matters more than religious interest. Such people, despite claiming to be men of faith, are deprived of God’s guidance.

They are the ones who say, ‘Give nothing to those who follow God’s Messenger, until they abandon him;’ but the treasures of the heavens and the earth belong to God, though the hypocrites do not understand this [and] they say, ‘Indeed, when we return to Madinah, [we] the ones most worthy of honour, will surely drive out from there the contemptible ones!’ [referring to poor Muslims]. However, all honour belongs to God, and to His Messenger and those who believe [in God]: but of this the hypocrites are not aware. (63: 7-8)

In Madinah, at the time of the Prophet, there were two groups of Muslims—one, the Migrants (al- Muhajrun), and the other, the Helpers (al-Ansar)—the local hosts in Madinah. The Migrants had come to Madinah on being displaced from their native place, Makkah. Their apparent supporters were the local Muslims of Madinah, the Helpers. In the eyes of world-loving people, the Migrants seemed to be people without honour compared to the Helpers, who were respectable people. This was felt so keenly that on one occasion, ‘Abdullah ibn Ubayy clearly stated, ‘What is the status of these Migrants? If we expel them from our place, they will not find refuge anywhere in the world.’ 

Such people are unaware of the reality that everything in this world belongs to God. He gives to whomever He wishes and takes away from whomever He wishes.

O believers! Do not let your wealth or your children distract you from remembrance of God. Those who do so will be the losers. And spend out of what We have provided you with before death comes to one of you and he says, ‘My Lord! If only You would grant me respite for a little while, then I would give alms and be among the righteous.’ But God will not grant a reprieve to a soul when its appointed time has come; God is well-aware of what you do. (63: 9-11)

The biggest issue for man is the inevitability of the Hereafter. But the consideration of riches and children make a man unmindful of it. Man should know that riches and children are not the final goal but the blessings given to him to utilise them for God’s work. He should use them to improve his life in the Hereafter. But man, in his stupidity, takes them to be his goal. When such people come face to face with their eventual final fate, they will experience only frustration and regret.o

How to Become Beautiful 
Sincerity is not a single value. It combines several good human values.
Where there is sincerity, there is moral beauty. In contrast, insincerity makes you ugly.