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wa-ittaqū
وَٱتَّقُوا۟
And fear
fit'natan
فِتْنَةً
a trial
لَّا
not
tuṣībanna
تُصِيبَنَّ
which will afflict
alladhīna
ٱلَّذِينَ
those who
ẓalamū
ظَلَمُوا۟
do wrong
minkum
مِنكُمْ
among you
khāṣṣatan
خَآصَّةًۖ
exclusively.
wa-iʿ'lamū
وَٱعْلَمُوٓا۟
And know
anna
أَنَّ
that
l-laha
ٱللَّهَ
Allah
shadīdu
شَدِيدُ
(is) severe
l-ʿiqābi
ٱلْعِقَابِ
(in) the penalty.

Wattaqoo fitnatal laa tuseebannal lazeena zalamoo minkum khaaaassatanw wa'lamooo annal laaha shadeedul 'iqaab

Sahih International:

And fear a trial which will not strike those who have wronged among you exclusively, and know that Allah is severe in penalty.

1 A. J. Arberry

And fear a trial which shall surely not smite in particular the evildoers among you; and know that God is terrible in retribution.

2 Abdul Haleem

Beware of discord that harms not only the wrongdoers among you: know that God is severe in His punishment.

3 Abdul Majid Daryabadi

And fear the trial that shall not afflict those alone who among you do Wrong; and know that verily Allah severe in chastising.

4 Abdullah Yusuf Ali

And fear tumult or oppression, which affecteth not in particular (only) those of you who do wrong; and know that Allah is strict in punishment.

5 Abul Ala Maududi

And guard against the mischief that will not only bring punishment to the wrong-doers among you. Know well that Allah is severe in punishment.

6 Ahmed Ali

Beware of sedition, which does not affect the oppressors alone among you, and know that the punishment of God is severe.

7 Ahmed Raza Khan

And fear the turmoil which will certainly not fall only upon a few selected unjust people among you; and know that Allah’s punishment is severe.

8 Ali Quli Qarai

And beware of a punishment, which shall not visit the wrongdoers among you exclusively, and know that Allah is severe in retribution.

9 Ali Ünal

And beware and guard yourselves against a trial that will surely not smite exclusively those among you who are engaged in wrongdoing; and know that God is severe in retribution.

10 Amatul Rahman Omar

And guard against an affliction which surely will not afflict only those of you in particular who have acted unjustly (but it will involve others also who are inclined towards them); and know that Allâh is Severe in requiting.

11 English Literal

And fear (and avoid a) test/torture (that) strikes/hits (E) especially/specifically those who caused injustice/oppression from you, and know that God (is) strong (severe in) the punishment.

12 Faridul Haque

And fear the turmoil which will certainly not fall only upon a few selected unjust people among you; and know that Allah’s punishment is severe.

13 Hamid S. Aziz

And fear temptation (or trial, chastisement, oppression, discord, chaos) which falls not exclusively on those of you who have done wrong; but know that Allah is severe in punishment.

14 Hilali & Khan

And fear the Fitnah (affliction and trial, etc.) which affects not in particular (only) those of you who do wrong (but it may afflict all the good and the bad people), and know that Allah is Severe in punishment.

15 Maulana Mohammad Ali

O you who believe, respond to Allah and His Messenger, when he calls you to that which gives you life. And know that Allah comes in between a man and his heart, and that to Him you will be gathered.

16 Mohammad Habib Shakir

And fear an affliction which may not smite those of you in particular who are unjust; and know that Allah is severe in requiting (evil).

17 Mohammed Marmaduke William Pickthall

And guard yourselves against a chastisement which cannot fall exclusively on those of you who are wrong-doers, and know that Allah is severe in punishment.

18 Muhammad Sarwar

Guard yourselves against discord among yourselves so that it will not mislead anyone of you, especially the unjust, and know that God's retribution is most severe.

19 Qaribullah & Darwish

And be cautious against a sedition that will not smite the harmdoers alone. Know that the punishment of Allah is Stern.

20 Safi-ur-Rahman al-Mubarakpuri

And fear the Fitnah (affliction and trial) which affects not in particular (only) those of you who do wrong, and know that Allah is severe in punishment.

21 Wahiduddin Khan

And beware of an affliction that will not smite exclusively those among you who have done wrong. Know that God is severe in exacting retribution.

22 Talal Itani

And beware of discord which does not afflict the wrongdoers among you exclusively; and know that God is severe in retribution.

23 Tafsir jalalayn

And be afraid of a trial which, if it were to fall upon you, would certainly not fall exclusively upon the evildoers among you, but would encompass them and others, and the way to guard against it is to repudiate that evil which necessarily results in [precipitating] it; and know that God is severe in retribution, against those who oppose Him.

24 Tafseer Ibn Kathir

Warning against an encompassing Fitnah

Allah warns;

وَاتَّقُواْ فِتْنَةً لاَّ تُصِيبَنَّ الَّذِينَ ظَلَمُواْ مِنكُمْ خَأصَّةً وَاعْلَمُواْ أَنَّ اللّهَ شَدِيدُ الْعِقَابِ



And fear the Fitnah (affliction and trial) which affects not in particular (only) those of you who do wrong, and know that Allah is severe in punishment.

Allah warns His believing servants of a Fitnah, trial and test, that encompasses the wicked and those around them. Therefore, such Fitnah will not be restricted to the sinners and evildoers. Rather, it will reach the others if the sins are not stopped and prevented.

Imam Ahmad recorded that Mutarrif said,

"We asked Az-Zubayr, `O Abu Abdullah! What brought you here (for the battle of Al-Jamal)! You abandoned the Khalifah who was assassinated (Uthman, may Allah be pleased with him) and then came asking for revenge for his blood!'

He said, `We recited at the time of the Messenger of Allah, and Abu Bakr, Umar and Uthman,

وَاتَّقُواْ فِتْنَةً لاَّ تُصِيبَنَّ الَّذِينَ ظَلَمُواْ مِنكُمْ خَأصَّةً


And fear the Fitnah (affliction and trial) which affects not in particular (only) those of you who do wrong,

We did not think that this Ayah was about us too, until it reached us as it did."'

Ali bin Abi Talhah reported that Ibn Abbas said that;

the Ayah,
وَاتَّقُواْ فِتْنَةً لاَّ تُصِيبَنَّ الَّذِينَ ظَلَمُواْ مِنكُمْ خَأصَّةً
(And fear the Fitnah (affliction and trial) which affects not in particular (only) those of you who do wrong), refers to the Companions of the Prophet in particular.

In another narration from Ibn Abbas, he said,

"Allah commanded the believers to stop evil from flourishing among them, so that Allah does not encompass them all in the torment (Fitnah)."

This, indeed, is a very good explanation, prompting Mujahid to comment about Allah's statement,
وَاتَّقُواْ فِتْنَةً لاَّ تُصِيبَنَّ الَّذِينَ ظَلَمُواْ مِنكُمْ خَأصَّةً
(And fear the Fitnah (affliction and trial) which affects not in particular (only) those of you who do wrong),

"Is for you too!"

Several said similarly, such as Ad-Dahhak and Yazid bin Abi Habib and several others.

Ibn Mas`ud said,

"There is none among you but there is something that represents a Fitnah for him, for Allah said,

إِنَّمَأ أَمْوَلُكُمْ وَأَوْلَـدُكُمْ فِتْنَةٌ

Your wealth and your children are only a trial (Fitnah)... (64;15)

Therefore, when you seek refuge, seek it with Allah from the Fitnah that causes misguidance."

Ibn Jarir collected this Hadith.

The view that the warning in this Ayah addresses the Companions and all others is true, even though the speech in the Ayah was directed at the Companions.

There are Hadiths that warn against Fitnah in general, thus providing the correctness of this explanation. Similarly there will be a separate book in which this subject will be discussed, Allah willing, as also is the case with the Imams, there being a number of writings about this.

Of the most precise things that have been mentioned under this topic, is what was recorded by Imam Ahmad from Hudhayfah bin Al-Yaman that the Messenger of Allah said,

وَالَّذِي نَفْسِي بِيَدِهِ لَتَأْمُرُنَّ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ وَلَتَنْهَوُنَّ عَنِ الْمُنْكَرِ أَوْ لَيُوشِكَنَّ اللهُ أَنْ يَبْعَثَ عَلَيْكُمْ عِقَابًا مِنْ عِنْدِهِ ثُمَّ لَتَدْعُنَّهُ فَلَا يَسْتَجِيبُ لَكُم

By He in Whose Hand is my soul! You will enjoin righteousness and forbid evil, or Allah will send a punishment upon you from Him; you will supplicate then to Him, but He will not answer your supplication.

Imam Ahmad recorded that Abu Ar-Riqad said,

"I heard Hudhayfah saying,

`A person used to utter one word during the time of the Messenger of Allah and become a hypocrite on account of it. I now hear such words from one of you four times in the same sitting. Surely, you will enjoin good, forbid evil and encourage each other to do good or Allah will surround you all with torment, or make the wicked among you become your leaders. The righteous among you will then supplicate, but their supplication will not be accepted."'

Imam Ahmad recorded that An-Nu`man bin Bashir said that the Prophet gave a speech in which he said, while pointing to his ears with two of his fingers,

مَثَلُ الْقَايِمِ عَلَى حُدُودِ اللهِ وَالْوَاقِعِ فِيهَا وَالْمُدَاهِنِ فِيهَا كَمَثَلِ قَوْمٍ رَكِبُوا سَفِينَةً فَأَصَابَ بَعْضُهُمْ أَسْفَلَهَا وَأَوْعَرَهَا وَشَرَّهَا وَأَصَابَ بَعْضُهُمْ أَعْلَهَا فَكَانَ الَّذِينَ فِي أَسْفَلِهَا إِذَا اسْتَقَوُا الْمَاءَ مَرُّوا عَلَى مَنْ فَوقَهُمْ فَأذُوْهُمْ فَقَالُوا لَوْ خَرَقْنَا فِي نَصِيبِنَا خَرْقًا فَاسْتَقَيْنَا مِنْهُ وَلَمْ نُوْذِ مَنْ فَوْقَنَا فَإِنْ تَرَكُوهُمْ وَأَمْرَهُمْ هَلَكُوا جَمِيعًا وَإِنْ أَخَذُوا عَلَى أَيْدِيهِمْ نَجَوْا جَمِيعًا

The parable of the person abiding by Allah's order and restrictions in comparison to those who violate them, or sit idle while they are being violated, is that of those who drew lots for their seats in a boat. Some of them got seats in the lower part, which is the most rough and worst part, and the others in the upper. When the former needed water, they had to go up to bring water and that troubled the others, so they said, `Let us make a hole in our share of the ship and get water, saving those who are above us from troubling them, so, if the people in the upper part let the others do what they suggested, all the people of the ship would be destroyed, but if they prevented them, both parties would be safe.

This was recorded by Al-Bukhari, but not Muslim, in the Book of Partnerships and the Book of Witnesses.

It was also recorded by At-Tirmidhi through a different route of narration.

Imam Ahmad recorded that Umm Salamah, the Prophet's wife, said,

"I heard the Messenger of Allah saying,

إِذَا ظَهَرَتِ الْمَعَاصِي فِي أُمَّتِي عَمَّهُمُ اللهُ بِعَذَابٍ مِنْ عِنْدِه

If sins become apparent in my Ummah, Allah will surround them with punishment from Him.

I said, `O Allah's Messenger! Will they have righteous people among them then?'

He said,
بَلَى
Yes.

I asked, `What will happen to them?'

He said,

يُصِيبُهُمْ مَا أَصَابَ النَّاسَ ثُمَّ يَصِيرُونَ إِلَى مَغْفِرَةٍ مِنَ اللهِ وَرِضْوَان

They will be stricken as the people, but they will end up with Allah's forgiveness and pleasure."

Imam Ahmad recorded that Jarir said that the Messenger of Allah said,

مَا مِنْ قَوْمٍ يُعْمَلُ فِيهِمْ بِالْمَعَاصِي هُمْ أَعَزُّ وَأَكْثَرُ مِمَّنْ يَعْمَلُونَ ثُمَّ لَمْ يُغَيِّرُوهُ إِلاَّ عَمَّهُمُ اللهُ بِعِقَاب

Every people among whom sins are being committed, while they are mightier and more numerous than those who do wrong, yet they did nothing to stop them, then Allah will surround them all with punishment.

Ibn Majah collected this Hadith