وَيُسَبِّحُ الرَّعْدُ بِحَمْدِهٖ وَالْمَلٰۤىِٕكَةُ مِنْ خِيْفَتِهٖۚ وَيُرْسِلُ الصَّوَاعِقَ فَيُصِيْبُ بِهَا مَنْ يَّشَاۤءُ وَهُمْ يُجَادِلُوْنَ فِى اللّٰهِ ۚوَهُوَ شَدِيْدُ الْمِحَالِۗ ( الرعد: ١٣ )
Wa yusabbihur ra'du bihamdihee walmalaaa'ikatu min kheefatihee wa yursilus sawaa'iqa fa yuseebu bihaa mai yashaaa'u wa hum yujaadiloona fil laahi wa Huwa shadeedul mihaal (ar-Raʿd 13:13)
And the thunder exalts [Allah] with praise of Him – and the angels [as well] from fear of Him – and He sends thunderbolts and strikes therewith whom He wills while they dispute about Allah; and He is severe in assault. (Ar-Ra'd  : 13)
1 Mufti Taqi Usmani
The thunder proclaims His purity with His praise, and (so do) the angels, out of His awe. And He sends the thunderbolts and strikes with it whom He wills. They are quarrelling about Allah, and He is stern in His plan.
2 Dr. Mustafa Khattab, the Clear Quran
The thunder glorifies His praises, as do the angels in awe of Him. He sends thunderbolts, striking with them whoever He wills. Yet they dispute about Allah. And He is tremendous in might.
3 Ruwwad Translation Center
The thunder glorifies His praise, and so do the angels in awe of Him. He sends thunderbolts, striking therewith whom He wills, yet they dispute about Allah, Who is severe in might.
4 A. J. Arberry
the thunder proclaims. His praise, and the angels, in awe of Him. He looses the thunderbolts, and smites with them whomsoever He will; yet they dispute about God, who is mighty in power.
5 Abdul Haleem
the thunder sounds His praises, as do the angels in awe of Him; He sends thunderbolts to strike whoever He will. Yet still they dispute about God- He has mighty plans.
6 Abdul Majid Daryabadi
And the thunder halloweth His praise, and so do the angels in awe of Him; and He sendeth the thunderbolts and smiteth therewith whomsoever He will. And they dispute concerning Allah, and He is strong in prowess.
7 Abdullah Yusuf Ali
Nay, thunder repeateth His praises, and so do the angels, with awe; He flingeth the loud-voiced thunder-bolts, and therewith He striketh whomsoever He will.. yet these (are the men) who (dare to) dispute about Allah, with the strength of His power (supreme)!
8 Abul Ala Maududi
The thunder celebrates His praise and holiness, and the angels, too, celebrate His praise for awe of Him. He hurls thunderbolts, striking with them whom He wills while they are engaged in disputation concerning Allah. He is Mighty in His contriving.
9 Ahmed Ali
The thunder sings His praises, and the angels too, for awe of Him. He sends thunder-bolts and strikes whosoever He will with them: Even then it is God they contend about! But mighty is He in (His) power.
10 Ahmed Raza Khan
And the thunder proclaims His purity with praise, and the angels out of fear of Him; and He sends the bolt of lightning – it therefore strikes upon whom He wills, whilst they are disputing concerning Allah; and severe is His seizure.
11 Ali Quli Qarai
The Thunder celebrates His praise, and the angels [too], in awe of Him, and He releases the thunderbolts and strikes with them whomever He wishes. Yet they dispute concerning Allah, though He is great in might.
12 Ali Ünal
The thunder glorifies Him with His praise (that He is absolutely above having any partners, and that all praise belongs to Him exclusively) and so do the angels, in awe of Him. And He lets loose the thunderbolts and strikes with them whom He wills. Yet they stubbornly argue about God, (notwithstanding all evidence that) He is severe in repelling and retribution.
13 Amatul Rahman Omar
And the thunder glorifies Him with His true praise and (so do) the angels in awe of Him. He sends the thunderbolts and therewith smites whom He will. Yet they dispute about Allâh, though He is Mighty in prowess.
14 English Literal
And the thunder praises/glorifies with His gratitude/thanks , and the angels from fearing Him, and He sends the fires falling from the sky accompanied by thunderous noise/death , so He strikes/hits with it whom He wills/wants, and (while) they argue/dispute in God, and He is strong (severe), the impenetrable/powerful, and mighty .
15 Faridul Haque
And the thunder proclaims His purity with praise, and the angels out of fear of Him; and He sends the bolt of lightning - it therefore strikes upon whom He wills, whilst they are disputing concerning Allah; and severe is His seizure.
16 Hamid S. Aziz
He it is who shows you the lightning, a fear and hope; and He brings up the clouds heavy (with quickening, life-giving, fertilizing) rain.
17 Hilali & Khan
And Ar-Ra'd (thunder) glorifies and praises Him, and so do the angels because of His Awe, He sends the thunderbolts, and therewith He strikes whom He wills, yet they (disbelievers) dispute about Allah. And He is Mighty in strength and Severe in punishment.
18 Maulana Mohammad Ali
He it is Who shows you the lightning causing fear and hope and (Who) brings up the heavy cloud.
19 Mohammad Habib Shakir
And the thunder declares His glory with His praise, and the angels too for awe of Him; and He sends the thunderbolts and smites with them whom He pleases, yet they dispute concerning Allah, and He is mighty in prowess.
20 Mohammed Marmaduke William Pickthall
The thunder hymneth His praise and (so do) the angels for awe of Him. He launcheth the thunderbolts and smiteth with them whom He will while they dispute (in doubt) concerning Allah, and He is mighty in wrath.
21 Muhammad Sarwar
Both the thunder and the angels glorify Him and out of His fear always praise Him. He sends down thunder-bolts to strike whomever He wants, while they are busy arguing about the existence of God. His punishment is stern.
22 Qaribullah & Darwish
The thunder exalts His praise, and so are the angels are in awe of Him. He looses the thunderbolts and smites whosoever He will. Yet they dispute aboutAllah who is Mighty in power.
23 Safi-ur-Rahman al-Mubarakpuri
And Ar-Ra'd (thunder) glorifies and praises Him, and so do the angels because of His awe. He sends the thunderbolts, and therewith He strikes whom He wills, yet they (disbelievers) dispute about Allah. And He is Mighty in strength and Severe in punishment.
24 Wahiduddin Khan
and the thunder glorifies Him with His praise and the angels do so too in awe of Him, and He sends His thunderbolts to strike anyone He pleases, yet they dispute about God, who is inexorable in His power.
25 Talal Itani
The thunder praises His glory, and so do the angels, in awe of Him. And He sends the thunderbolts, striking with them whomever He wills. Yet they argue about God, while He is Tremendous in might.
26 Tafsir jalalayn
And the thunder -- this is an angel, who is in charge of the clouds, driving them, [while he] constantly, proclaims His praise, that is, he says, `Glory be to God through His praise' (subhna'Llh wa-bi-hamdihi), and so too the angels, proclaim His praise, in awe of Him, that is, of God. He unleashes the thunderbolts -- these are a fire which issues forth from the clouds -- and smites with them whom He will, such that it burns [that person]; this was revealed regarding a man to whom the Prophet (s) had sent someone to invite [to Islam] and who said, `Who is the Messenger of God? And what is God? Is He [made] of gold, or of silver, or of copper?', whereupon a thunderbolt came down on him and blew off the top of his head; yet they, that is, the disbelievers, dispute, argue with the Prophet (s), about God, though He is great in might, in power, or in [the severity of His] retribution.
27 Tafseer Ibn Kathir
وَيُسَبِّحُ الرَّعْدُ بِحَمْدِهِ
And Ar-Ra'd (thunder) glorifies and praises Him,
is similar to His other statement,
وَإِن مِّن شَىْءٍ إِلاَّ يُسَبِّحُ بِحَمْدَهِ
And there is not a thing but glorifies His praise. (17;44)
Imam Ahmad recorded that Ibrahim bin Sa`d said,
"My father told me that he was sitting next to Hamid bin Abdur Rahman in the Masjid. A man from the tribe of Ghifar passed and Hamid sent someone to him to please come to them. When he came, Hamid said to me, `My nephew! Make space for him between me and you, for he had accompanied Allah's Messenger.'
When that man came, he sat between me and Hamid and Hamid said to him, `What was the Hadith that you narrated to me from the Messenger of Allah?'
He said, `A man from Ghifar said that he heard the Prophet say,
إِنَّ اللهَ يُنْشِىءُ السَّحَابَ فَيَنْطِقُ أَحْسَنَ النُّطْقِ وَيَضْحَكُ أَحْسَنَ الضَّحِك
Verily, Allah originates the clouds, and they speak in the most beautiful voice and laugh in the most beautiful manner.
It appears, and Allah has the best knowledge, that the cloud's voice is in reference to thunder and its laughter is the lightning.
Musa bin Ubaydah narrated that Sa`d bin Ibrahim said,
"Allah sends the rain and indeed, none has a better smile than it, nor more comforting voice. Its smile is lightning and its voice is thunder."
وَالْمَلَيِكَةُ مِنْ خِيفَتِهِ
and so do the angels because of His awe.
Supplicating to Allah upon hearing Ar-Ra`d (Thunder)
Imam Ahmad recorded that Salim bin Abdullah narrated that his father said that the Messenger of Allah used to say upon hearing the thunder and thunderbolts,
اللَّهُمَّ لَا تَقْتُلْنَا بِغَضَبِكَ وَلَا تُهْلِكْنَا بِعَذَابِكَ وَعَافِنَا قَبْل ذَلِك
O Allah! Do not kill us with Your anger, nor destroy us with Your torment, and save us before that."
This Hadith was recorded by At-Tirmidhi, Al-Bukhari in his book Al-Adab Al-Mufrad, An-Nasa'i in `Amal Al-Yawm wal-Laylah, and Al-Hakim in Al-Mustadrak.
When Abdullah bin Az-Zubayr used to hear thunder, he would stop talking and would supplicate,
"All praise is to He Whom Ar-Ra`d (thunder) glorifies and praises, and so do the angels because of His awe."
He would then say, "This is a stern warning to the people of earth."
Malik collected this Hadith in Al-Muwatta', and Al-Bukhari in Al-Adab Al-Mufrad.
Imam Ahmad recorded that Abu Hurayrah said that the Messenger of Allah said,
قَالَ رَبُّكُمْ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ لَوْ أَنَّ عَبِيدِي أَطَاعُونِي لَااَسْقَيْتُهُمُ الْمَطَرَ بِاللَّيْلِ وَأَطْلَعْتُ عَلَيْهِمُ الشَّمْسَ بِالنَّهَارِ وَلَمَا أَسْمَعْتُهُمْ صَوْتَ الرَّعْد
Your Lord, the Exalted and Most High, said, `Had My servants obeyed Me, I would have given them rain by night and the sun by day, and would not have made them hear the sound of the Ra`d (thunder).'
وَيُرْسِلُ الصَّوَاعِقَ فَيُصِيبُ بِهَا مَن يَشَاء
He sends the thunderbolts, and therewith He strikes whom He wills,
indicates that He sends thunderbolts as punishment upon whom He wills, and this is why thunderbolts increase as time comes to an end.
Al-Hafiz Abu Al-Qasim At-Tabarani narrated that Ibn Abbas said that;
Arbad bin Qays bin Juzu' bin Julayd bin Jafar bin Kulab, and Amir bin At-Tufayl bin Malik came to Al-Madinah to the Messenger of Allah and sat where he was sitting.
Amir bin At-Tufayl said, "O Muhammad! What will you give me if I embrace Islam!"
The Messenger of Allah said,
لَكَ مَا لِلْمُسْلِمِينَ وَعَلَيْكَ مَا عَلَيْهِم
You will have the rights and duties of all Muslims.
Amir bin At-Tufayl said, "Will you make me your successor if I embrace Islam?"
The Messenger of Allah said,
لَيْسَ ذَلِكَ لَكَ وَلَا لِقَوْمِكَ وَلَكِنْ لَكَ أَعِنَّةَ الْخَيْل
That is not your right, nor your people's right. However, I could appoint you a commander of the horsemen (i.e., war).
Amir said, "I am already the commander of the horsemen of Najd (in the north of Arabia). Give me control over the desert and you keep the cities."
The Messenger of Allah refused.
When these two men were leaving the Messenger of Allah, Amir said, "By Allah! I will fill it (Al-Madinah) with horses and men (hostile to Muslims)."
The Messenger of Allah replied,
Rather, Allah will prevent you.
When Amir and Arbad left, Amir said, "O Arbad! I will keep Muhammad busy while talking to him, so you can strike him with the sword. Verily, if you kill Muhammad, the people (Muslims) will agree to take blood money and will hate to wage war over his murder. Then we will give them the blood money."
Arbad said, "I will do that," and they went back to the Messenger.
Amir said, "O Muhammad! Stand next to me so that I can talk to you."
The Messenger stood up, and they both stood next to a wall talking to each other. Arbad wanted to grab his sword, but his hand froze when it touched the sword's handle and he could not take the sword out of its sheath.
Arbad did not strike the Messenger as Amir suggested, and the Messenger of Allah looked at Arbad and realized what he was doing, so he departed.
When Arbad and Amir left the Messenger of Allah and arrived at Al-Harrah of Waqim area, they dismounted from their horses. However, Sa`d bin Mu`adh and Usayd bin Hudayr came out saying, "Come, O enemies of Allah! May Allah curse you."
Amir asked, "Who is this with you, O Sa`d?"
Sa`d said, "This is Usayd bin Hudayr."
They fled until they reached the Riqm area, where Allah struck Arbad with a bolt of lightning and he met his demise.
As for Amir, he went on until he reached the Kharim area, where Allah sent an open ulcer that struck him. During that night, Amir took refuge in a woman's house, from Banu Salul. Amir kept touching his open ulcer and saying, "An ulcer as big as a camel's hump, while I am at the house of a woman from Bani Salul, seeking to bring my death in her house!"
He rode his horse, but he died while riding it headed to his area.
Allah sent down these Ayat (13;8-11) in their case,
اللّهُ يَعْلَمُ مَا تَحْمِلُ كُلُّ أُنثَى
(Allah knows what every female bears) until,
وَمَا لَهُم مِّن دُونِهِ مِن وَالٍ
(...and they will find besides Him no protector).
Ibn Abbas commented,
"The angels in succession, guard Muhammad, peace be upon him, by the command of Allah."
He next mentioned the demise of Arbad by Allah's command, reciting this Ayah,
(He sends the thunderbolts,)"
Allah said next,
وَهُمْ يُجَادِلُونَ فِي اللّهِ
yet they (disbelievers) dispute about Allah.
they doubt Allah's greatness and that there is no deity worthy of worship except Him,
وَهُوَ شَدِيدُ الْمِحَالِ
And He is Mighty in strength and Severe in punishment.
Allah's torment is severe against those who rebel against Him, defy Him and persist in disbelief, according to the Tafsir of Ibn Jarir At-Tabari.
There is a similar Ayah in the Qur'an,
وَمَكَرُواْ مَكْراً وَمَكَرْنَا مَكْراً وَهُمْ لَا يَشْعُرُونَ
فَانظُرْ كَيْفَ كَانَ عَـقِبَةُ مَكْرِهِمْ أَنَّا دَمَّرْنَـهُمْ وَقَوْمَهُمْ أَجْمَعِينَ
So they plotted a plot, and We planned a plan, while they perceived not. Then see how was the end of their plot! Verily, We destroyed them and their nation all together. (27;50-51)
Ali bin Abi Talib said that,
وَهُوَ شَدِيدُ الْمِحَالِ
(And He is Mighty in strength and Severe in punishment (Al-Mihal)),
means, His punishment is severe