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wamā
وَمَا
And nothing
manaʿa
مَنَعَ
prevents
l-nāsa
ٱلنَّاسَ
men
an
أَن
that
yu'minū
يُؤْمِنُوٓا۟
they believe
idh
إِذْ
when
jāahumu
جَآءَهُمُ
has come to them
l-hudā
ٱلْهُدَىٰ
the guidance
wayastaghfirū
وَيَسْتَغْفِرُوا۟
and they ask forgiveness
rabbahum
رَبَّهُمْ
(of) their Lord,
illā
إِلَّآ
except
an
أَن
that
tatiyahum
تَأْتِيَهُمْ
comes to them
sunnatu
سُنَّةُ
(the) way
l-awalīna
ٱلْأَوَّلِينَ
(of) the former (people)
aw
أَوْ
or
yatiyahumu
يَأْتِيَهُمُ
comes to them
l-ʿadhābu
ٱلْعَذَابُ
the punishment
qubulan
قُبُلًا
before (them)?

Wa maa mana'an naasa any yu'minooo iz jaaa'ahumul hudaa wa yastaghfiroo Rabbahum illaaa an taatiyahum sunnatul awwaleena aw yaatiyahumul 'azaabu qubulaa

Sahih International:

And nothing has prevented the people from believing when guidance came to them and from asking forgiveness of their Lord except that there [must] befall them the [accustomed] precedent of the former peoples or that the punishment should come [directly] before them.

1 A. J. Arberry

And naught prevented men from believing when the guidance came unto them, and seeking their Lord's forgiveness, but that the wont of the ancients should come upon them, or that the chastisement should come upon them face to face.

2 Abdul Haleem

Now that guidance has come to them, what stops these people believing and asking forgiveness from their Lord before the fate of earlier peoples annihilates them or their torment confronts them?

3 Abdul Majid Daryabadi

And naught preventeth mankind from believing when the guidance hath come unto them, and from asking foregiveness of their Lord, but that there may come unto them the dispensation of the ancients, or that the torment may come Unto them face to face.

4 Abdullah Yusuf Ali

And what is there to keep back men from believing, now that Guidance has come to them, nor from praying for forgiveness from their Lord, but that (they ask that) the ways of the ancients be repeated with them, or the Wrath be brought to them face to face?

5 Abul Ala Maududi

What is it that prevented mankind from believing when the guidance came to them, and from asking forgiveness of their Lord, except that they would like to be treated as the nations of yore, or that they would like to see the scourge come upon them face to face?

6 Ahmed Ali

There is nothing to prevent men from believing when the guidance has come to them, and asking for their Lord's forgiveness, unless they want the example of earlier people visited upon them, or the punishment to appear right before their eyes.

7 Ahmed Raza Khan

And what prevented men from accepting faith when guidance came to them, and from asking forgiveness from their Lord except that the tradition of the former nations come upon them or that they confront various kinds of punishments?

8 Ali Quli Qarai

Nothing has kept these people from believing and pleading to their Lord for forgiveness when guidance came to them, except [their demand] that the precedent of the ancients come to pass for them, or that the punishment come to them, face to face.

9 Ali Ünal

What is there to keep people from believing when guidance has come to them, and from imploring their Lord for forgiveness – unless it be that they follow the way of the (sinful) people of olden times (as if wishing for their fate to come upon them) or the punishment (which they did not believe in but asked their Prophet, in derision, to bring down upon them) come and confront them? (Then indeed they would have no opportunity to implore forgiveness and hope for relief.)

10 Amatul Rahman Omar

Unless the precedence of the ancients should be repeated in their case or the punishment should stare them in the face, there is nothing to hinder people from believing in the guidance when it comes to them and from seeking protection and pardon of their Lord.

11 English Literal

And what prevented/forbid the people that (E) they believe when the guidance came to them? And they ask for forgiveness (from) their Lord? Except that the first`s/beginner`s law/manner comes to them or the punishment comes to them in front/facing front.

12 Faridul Haque

And what prevented men from accepting faith when guidance came to them, and from asking forgiveness from their Lord except that the tradition of the former nations come upon them or that they confront various kinds of punishments?

13 Hamid S. Aziz

Verily, We have displayed in this Quran for men all kinds of similitudes (parables); but man is ever contentious.

14 Hilali & Khan

And nothing prevents men from believing, now when the guidance (the Quran) has come to them, and from asking Forgiveness of their Lord, except that the ways of the ancients be repeated with them (i.e. their destruction decreed by Allah), or the torment be brought to them face to face?

15 Maulana Mohammad Ali

And certainly We have made distinct in this Qur’an for mankind every kind of description; and man is in most things contentious.

16 Mohammad Habib Shakir

And nothing prevents men from believing when the guidance comes to them, and from asking forgiveness of their Lord, except that what happened to the ancients should overtake them, or that the chastisement should come face to face with them.

17 Mohammed Marmaduke William Pickthall

And naught hindereth mankind from believing when the guidance cometh unto them, and from asking forgiveness of their Lord unless (it be that they wish) that the judgment of the men of old should come upon them or (that) they should be confronted with the Doom.

18 Muhammad Sarwar

What prevents people from having faith when guidance comes to them or from asking for forgiveness from their Lord before they face the kind of torment that the ancient people experienced or a new form of torment.

19 Qaribullah & Darwish

Nothing prevented people from believing and seeking the forgiveness of their Lord when guidance came to them, unless they are waiting for the fate of the ancients to overtake them, or that the punishment should come upon them face to face.

20 Safi-ur-Rahman al-Mubarakpuri

And nothing prevents men from believing, while the guidance has come to them, and from asking forgiveness of their Lord, except that the ways of the ancients be repeated with them, or the torment be brought to them face to face.

21 Wahiduddin Khan

Nothing prevents people from believing when they are given guidance or from asking forgiveness of their Lord, but the fact that the fate of the previous peoples should befall them or to have the punishment come upon them face to face.

22 Talal Itani

What prevented people from accepting faith, when guidance has come to them, and from seeking their Lord’s forgiveness? Unless they are waiting for the precedent of the ancients to befall them, or to have the punishment come upon them face to face.

23 Tafsir jalalayn

And nothing prevented people, that is, the disbelievers of Mecca, from believing (an yu'min is [after al- nsa, `people'] constitutes the second direct object clause) when the guidance, the Qur'n, came to them, and from asking forgiveness of their Lord, without that there should come upon them the precedent of the ancients (sunnatu'l-awwaln constitutes the subject of the verb) that is to say, Our precedent of dealing with them, which is the destruction decreed for them, or that the chastisement should come upon them before their very eyes, in front of them and for them to see -- which was their being killed on the day of Badr (a variant reading [for qibalan] has qubulan, which [in the accusative] is the plural of qablin, meaning, `of various kinds').

24 Tafseer Ibn Kathir

The Rebellion of the Disbelievers

Allah tells;

وَمَا مَنَعَ النَّاسَ أَن يُوْمِنُوا إِذْ جَاءهُمُ الْهُدَى وَيَسْتَغْفِرُوا رَبَّهُمْ

And nothing prevents men from believing, while the guidance has come to them, and from asking forgiveness of their Lord,

Allah tells us about the rebellion of the disbelievers in ancient times and in more recent times, and how they rejected the obvious truth even when they witnessed clear signs and proofs. Nothing stopped them from following the truth except their demand to witness with their own eyes the punishment which they were being warned about. As some of them said to their Prophet;

فَأَسْقِطْ عَلَيْنَا كِسَفاً مِّنَ السَّمَأءِ إِن كُنتَ مِنَ الصَّـدِقِينَ

So cause a piece of the heaven to fall on us, if you are of the truthful! (26;187)

Others said;

ايْتِنَا بِعَذَابِ اللَّهِ إِن كُنتَ مِنَ الصَّـدِقِينَ

Bring Allah's torment upon us if you are one of the truthful. (29;29)

The Quraysh said;

اللَّهُمَّ إِن كَانَ هَـذَا هُوَ الْحَقَّ مِنْ عِندِكَ فَأَمْطِرْ عَلَيْنَا حِجَارَةً مِّنَ السَّمَأءِ أَوِ ايْتِنَا بِعَذَابٍ أَلِيمٍ

O Allah! If this is indeed the truth from You, then rain down stones on us from the sky or bring upon us a painful torment. (8;32)

وَقَالُواْ يأَيُّهَا الَّذِى نُزِّلَ عَلَيْهِ الذِّكْرُ إِنَّكَ لَمَجْنُونٌ


لَّوْ مَا تَأْتِينَا بِالْمَلَـيِكَةِ إِن كُنتَ مِنَ الصَّـدِقِينَ


And they say;"O you to whom the Reminder has been sent down! Verily, you are a mad man! Why do you not bring angels to us if you are of the truthful!" (15;6-7)

There are other Ayat referring to the same thing.

Then Allah says;

إِلاَّ أَن تَأْتِيَهُمْ سُنَّةُ الاَْوَّلِينَ

except that the ways of the ancients be repeated with them,

meaning, their overwhelming punishment, destroying every last one of them.

أَوْ يَأْتِيَهُمُ الْعَذَابُ قُبُلً



or the torment be brought to them face to face.

they see it with their own eyes, being directly confronted with it.

Then Allah says