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lawlā
لَّوْلَآ
Why not,
idh
إِذْ
when
samiʿ'tumūhu
سَمِعْتُمُوهُ
you heard it,
ẓanna
ظَنَّ
think
l-mu'minūna
ٱلْمُؤْمِنُونَ
the believing men
wal-mu'minātu
وَٱلْمُؤْمِنَٰتُ
and the believing women
bi-anfusihim
بِأَنفُسِهِمْ
good of themselves
khayran
خَيْرًا
good of themselves
waqālū
وَقَالُوا۟
and say,
hādhā
هَٰذَآ
"This
if'kun
إِفْكٌ
(is) a lie
mubīnun
مُّبِينٌ
clear?"

Law laaa iz sami'tumoohu zannal mu'minoona walmu'minaatu bi anfusihim khairanw wa qaaloo haazaaa ifkum mmubeen

Sahih International:

Why, when you heard it, did not the believing men and believing women think good of one another and say, "This is an obvious falsehood"?

1 A. J. Arberry

Why, when you heard it, did the believing men and women not of their own account think good thoughts, and say, 'This is a manifest calumny'?

2 Abdul Haleem

When you heard the lie, why did believing men and women not think well of their own people and declare, ‘This is obviously a lie’?

3 Abdul Majid Daryabadi

Wherefore, when ye heard it, did not the believing men and believing women imagine best of their own people and say: this is a calumny manifest!

4 Abdullah Yusuf Ali

Why did not the believers - men and women - when ye heard of the affair,- put the best construction on it in their own minds and say, "This (charge) is an obvious lie"?

5 Abul Ala Maududi

When you heard of it, why didn't the Believing men and the Believing women have a good opinion of themselves, and why did they not say, "This is a manifest slander?"

6 Ahmed Ali

Why did the faithful men and women not think well of their people when they heard this, and said: "This is a clear lie?"

7 Ahmed Raza Khan

Why was it not that the believing men and women, when you heard it, thought good of their own people, and had said, “This is a clear accusation”?

8 Ali Quli Qarai

When you [first] heard about it, why did not the faithful, men and women, think well of their folks, and say, ‘This is an obvious calumny’?

9 Ali Ünal

When you heard of it, why did the believing men and women not think well of one another and declare: "This is obviously a slander"?

10 Amatul Rahman Omar

When you heard of this (accusation) why did not the believing men and believing women have a better opinion in respect of their own people and say, `This (charge) is an obvious lie?´

11 English Literal

Where it not for when you heard it , the believers (M) and the believers (F) thought/assumed goodness with themselves, and they said: "That (is) evident lies/falsehood."

12 Faridul Haque

Why was it not that the believing men and women, when you heard it, thought good of their own people, and had said, "This is a clear accusation"?

13 Hamid S. Aziz

Verily, those who spread the slander are a gang among you. Deem it not as an evil for you. Nay, it is good for you. Every man of them shall have what he has earned of sin; and he among them who had the greater share (took the lead), for him is an awful doom.

14 Hilali & Khan

Why then, did not the believers, men and women, when you heard it (the slander) think good of their own people and say: "This (charge) is an obvious lie?"

15 Maulana Mohammad Ali

Surely they who concocted the lie are a party from among you. Deem it not an evil to you. Nay, it is good for you. For every man of them is what he has earned of sin; and as for him among them who took upon himself the main part thereof, he shall have a grievous punishment.

16 Mohammad Habib Shakir

Why did not the believing men and the believing women, when you heard it, think well of their own people, and say: This is an evident falsehood?

17 Mohammed Marmaduke William Pickthall

Why did not the believers, men and women, when ye heard it, think good of their own own folk, and say: It is a manifest untruth?

18 Muhammad Sarwar

Would that on your hearing this report, the believing men and woman among you had a favorable attitude towards it, and had said, "This report is clearly false".

19 Qaribullah & Darwish

Had you heard it, and the believing men and women, thought good thoughts about one another said: 'This is a clear falsehood'

20 Safi-ur-Rahman al-Mubarakpuri

Why then, did not the believers, men and women, when you heard it, think good of their own people and say: "This is an obvious lie"

21 Wahiduddin Khan

When you heard of it, why did not the believing men and believing women think well of their own people, and say, "This is a manifest slander?"

22 Talal Itani

Why, when you heard about it, the believing men and women did not think well of one another, and say, “This is an obvious lie”?

23 Tafsir jalalayn

Why, when you [first] heard about it, did the believing men and women not think good of themselves, that is, [why did] some [not] think good of others, and say, `This is a manifest calumny?', [this is] a patent lie? (there is a shift here in the address from the second to the third person), in other words, [why did] you [not] assume [good of them], O band [of believers] and say;

24 Tafseer Ibn Kathir

Disciplining the Believers for spreading the Slander

Here Allah disciplines the believers with regard to the matter of A'ishah, because some of them spread this evil talk and the slander that had been mentioned.

So Allah says;

لَوْلَا إِذْ سَمِعْتُمُوهُ

Why then, when you heard it,

meaning, the talk which accused the Mother of the believers, may Allah be pleased with her,

ظَنَّ الْمُوْمِنُونَ وَالْمُوْمِنَاتُ بِأَنفُسِهِمْ خَيْرًا

the believers, men and women, think good of their own people,

means, why did they not compare what was said to themselves -- if it was not befitting for them then it was even less appropriate for the Mother of the believers, and she was more likely to be innocent.

Or it was said that this was revealed about Abu Ayub Khalid bin Zayd Al-Ansari and his wife, may Allah be pleased with them.

Imam Muhammad bin Ishaq bin Yasar narrated,

"The wife of Abu Ayub Khalid bin Zayd Al-Ansari, Umm Ayub, said to him, `O Abu Ayub, have you heard what the people are saying about A'ishah!'

He said, `Yes, and it is all lies. Would you do that, O Umm Ayub!'

She said, `No, by Allah, I would not do that.'

He said, `And by Allah, A'ishah is better than you.'

When the Qur'an was revealed, Allah mentioned those who spoke about the evil deed among the people of the slander,
إِنَّ الَّذِينَ جَاوُوا بِالاِْفْكِ عُصْبَةٌ مِّنكُمْ
(Verily, those who brought forth the slander are a group among you). (24;11)

This refers to Hassan and his companions who said what they said.

Then Allah said,

لَوْلَا إِذْ سَمِعْتُمُوهُ ظَنَّ الْمُوْمِنُونَ


Why then, did not the believers, men, when you heard it, think...

means, as Abu Ayub and his wife did."

Allah's saying;

ظَنَّ الْمُوْمِنُونَ


the believers, men think...

meaning, `why did they not think good, because the Mother of the believers is his wife and is closer to him.'

This is concerned with innermost feelings;

وَقَالُوا

and say;

means, with their tongues, verbally,

هَذَا إِفْكٌ مُّبِينٌ




"This (charge) is an obvious lie."

means, a clear untruth told about the Mother of the believers, may Allah be pleased with her.

What happened should not have been the cause of suspicion. The fact that the Mother of the believers came openly, riding on the camel of Safwan bin Al-Mu`attal at midday, with the entire army watching and the Messenger of Allah among them, should have made it clear that there was no cause for suspicion. If there had been anything suspicious about the matter, they would not have come openly in this manner in front of so many witnesses; they would have come secretly. On this basis, what the people of the slander said accusing the Mother of the believers was an utter lie, false speech and evil foolish talk, by which people who indulged in it lost out.

Allah said