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20:1  Ta H
20:2  It was not to distress you [Prophet] that We sent down the Quran to you
20:3  but as a reminder for those who hold God in awe
20:4  a revelation from the One who created the earth and the high heaven
20:5  the Lord of Mercy, established on the throne
20:6  Everything in the heavens and on earth, everything between them, everything beneath the soil, belongs to Him
20:7  Whatever you may say aloud, He knows what you keep secret and what is even more hidden
20:8  God––there is no god but Him––the most excellent names belong to Him
20:9  Has the story of Moses come to you [Prophet]
20:10  He saw a fire and said to his people, ‘Stay here––I can see a fire. Maybe I can bring you a flaming brand from it or find some guidance there.’
20:11  When he came to the fire, he was summoned, ‘Moses
20:12  I am your Lord. Take off your shoes: you are in the sacred valley of Tuwa
20:13  I have chosen you, so listen to what is being revealed
20:14  I am God; there is no god but Me. So worship Me and keep up the prayer so that you remember Me
20:15  The Hour is coming––though I choose to keep it hidden––for each soul to be rewarded for its labour
20:16  Do not let anyone who does not believe in it and follows his own desires distract you from it, and so bring you to ruin.’
20:17  ‘Moses, what is that in your right hand?’
20:18  ‘It is my staff,’ he said, ‘I lean on it; restrain my sheep with it; I also have other uses for it.’
20:19  God said, ‘Throw it down, Moses.’
20:20  He threw it down and- lo and behold!- it became a fast-moving snake
20:21  He said, ‘Pick it up without fear: We shall turn it back into its former state
20:22  Now place your hand under your armpit and it will come out white, though unharmed: that is another sign
20:23  We do this to show you some of Our greatest signs
20:24  Go to Pharaoh, for he has truly become a tyrant.’
20:25  Moses said, ‘Lord, lift up my hear
20:26  and ease my task for me
20:27  Untie my tongue
20:28  so that they may understand my words
20:29  and give me a helper from my family
20:30  my brother Aaron
20:31  augment my strength through him
20:32  Let him share my tas
20:33  so that we can glorify You muc
20:34  and remember You often
20:35  You are always watching over us.’
20:36  God said, ‘Moses, your request is granted
20:37  Indeed We showed you favour before
20:38  We inspired your mother, saying
20:39  “Put your child into the chest, then place him in the river. Let the river wash him on to its bank, and he will be taken in by an enemy of Mine and his.” I showered you with My love and planned that you should be reared under My watchful eye
20:40  Your sister went out, saying, “I will tell you someone who will nurse him,” then We returned you to your mother so that she could rejoice and not grieve. Later you killed a man, but We saved you from distress and tried you with other tests. You stayed among the people of Midian for years, then you came here as I ordained
20:41  I have chosen you for Myself
20:42  Go, you and your brother, with My signs, and make sure that you remember Me
20:43  Go, both of you, to Pharaoh, for he has exceeded all bounds
20:44  Speak to him gently so that he may take heed, or show respect.’
20:45  They said, ‘Lord, we fear he will do us great harm or exceed all bounds.’
20:46  He said, ‘Do not be afraid, I am with you both, hearing and seeing everything
20:47  Go and tell him, “We are your Lord’s mes-sengers, so send the Children of Israel with us and do not oppress them. We have brought you a sign from your Lord. Peace be upon whoever follows the right guidance
20:48  it has been revealed to us that punishment falls on whoever rejects the truth and turns his back on it.”&rsquo
20:49  [Pharaoh] said, ‘Moses, who is this Lord of yours?’
20:50  Moses said, ‘Our Lord is He who gave everything its form, then gave it guidance.’
20:51  He said, ‘What about former generations?’
20:52  Moses said, ‘My Lord alone has knowledge of them, all in a record; my Lord does not err or forget.’
20:53  It was He who spread out the earth for you and traced routes in it. He sent down water from the sky. With that water We bring forth every kind of plant
20:54  so eat, and graze your cattle. There are truly signs in all this for people of understand-ing
20:55  From the earth We created you, into it We shall return you, and from it We shall raise you a second time
20:56  We showed Pharaoh all Our signs, but he denied them and refused [to change]
20:57  He said, ‘Have you come to drive us from our land with your sorcery, Moses
20:58  We will confront you with sorcery to match your own: make an appointment between us which neither of us will fail to keep, in a mutually agreeable place.’
20:59  He said, ‘Your meeting will be on the day of the feast, so let the people be assembled when the sun has risen high.’
20:60  Pharaoh withdrew and gathered his resources, then he returned
20:61  Moses said to them, ‘Beware, do not invent lies against God or He will destroy you with His punishment. Whoever invents lies will fail.’
20:62  So they discussed their plan among themselves, talking secretly
20:63  saying, ‘These two men are sorcerers. Their purpose is to drive you out of your land with their sorcery and put an end to your time-honoured way of life
20:64  So gather your resources and line up for the contest. Whoever wins today is sure to prosper.’
20:65  They said, ‘Moses, will you throw first or shall we?’
20:66  ‘You throw,’ said Moses, and––lo and behold!––through their sorcery, their ropes and staffs seemed to him to be moving
20:67  Moses was inwardly alarmed
20:68  but We said, ‘Do not be afraid, you have the upper hand
20:69  Throw down what is in your right hand: it will swallow up what they have produced. They have only produced the tricks of a sorcerer, and a sorcerer will not prosper, wherever he goes.’
20:70  [So it was, and] the sorcerers threw themselves down in submission. ‘We believe,’ they said, ‘in the Lord of Aaron and Moses.’
20:71  Pharaoh said, ‘How dare you believe in him before I have given you permission? This must be your master, the man who taught you witchcraft. I shall certainly cut off your alternate hands and feet, then crucify you on the trunks of palm trees. You will know for certain which of us has the fiercer and more lasting punishment.’
20:72  They said, ‘We shall never prefer you to the clear sign that has come to us, nor to Him who created us. So decide whatever you will: you can only decide matters of this present life
20:73  we believe in our Lord, [hoping] He may forgive us our sins and the sorcery that you forced us to practise- God is better and more lasting.’
20:74  Hell will be the reward of those who return to their Lord as evildoers: there they will stay, neither living nor dying
20:75  But those who return to their Lord as believers with righteous deeds will be rewarded with the highest of ranks
20:76  Gardens of lasting bliss graced with flowing streams, and there they will stay. Such is the reward of those who purify themselves
20:77  We revealed to Moses, ‘Go out at night with My servants and strike a dry path for them across the sea. Have no fear of being overtaken and do not be dismayed.’
20:78  Pharaoh pursued them with his armies and was overwhelmed by the sea
20:79  Pharaoh truly led his people astray; he did not guide them
20:80  Children of Israel, We rescued you from your enemies. We made a pledge with you on the right-hand side of the mountain. We sent down manna and quails for you
20:81  ‘Eat from the good things We have provided for you, but do not overstep the bounds, or My wrath will descend on you. Anyone on whom My wrath descends has truly fallen
20:82  Yet I am most forgiving towards those who repent, believe, do righteous deeds, and stay on the right path.’
20:83  [God said], ‘Moses, what has made you come ahead of your people in such haste?’
20:84  and he said, ‘They are following in my footsteps. I rushed to You, Lord, to please You,’
20:85  but God said, ‘We have tested your people in your absence: the Samiri has led them astray.’
20:86  Moses returned to his people, angry and aggrieved. He said, ‘My people, did your Lord not make you a gracious promise? Was my absence too long for you? Did you want anger to fall on you from your Lord and so broke your word to me?’
20:87  They said, ‘We did not break our word to you deliberately. We were burdened with the weight of people’s jewellery, so we threw it [into the fire], and the Samiri did the same,’
20:88  but he [used the molten jewellery to] produce an image of a calf which made a lowing sound, and they said, ‘This is your god and Moses’ god, but he has forgotten.’
20:89  Did they not see that [the calf] gave them no answer, that it had no power to harm or benefit them
20:90  Aaron did say to them, ‘My people, this calf is a test for you. Your true Lord is the Lord of Mercy, so follow me and obey my orders,’
20:91  but they replied, ‘We shall not give up our devotion to it until Moses returns to us.’
20:92  Moses said, ‘When you realized they had gone astray, what prevented you, Aaron
20:93  from coming after me? How could you disobey my orders?’
20:94  He said, ‘Son of my mother- let go of my beard and my hair!- I was afraid you would say, “You have caused division among the children of Israel and have not heeded what I said.”&rsquo
20:95  Moses said, ‘And what was the matter with you, Samiri?’
20:96  He replied, ‘I saw something they did not; I took in some of the teachings of the Messenger but tossed them aside: my soul prompted me to do what I did.’
20:97  Moses said, ‘Get away from here! Your lot in this life is to say, “Do not touch me,” but you have an appointment from which there is no escape. Look at your god which you have kept on worshipping- we shall grind it down and scatter it into the sea
20:98  [People], your true god is the One God- there is no god but Him- whose knowledge embraces everything.’
20:99  In this way We relate to you [Prophet] stories of what happened before. We have given you a Quran from Us
20:100  Whoever turns away from it will bear on the Day of Resurrection a heavy burde
20:101  and will remain under it. What a terrible burden to carry on that Day
20:102  When the trumpet is sounded and We gather the sinful, sightless
20:103  they will murmur to one another, ‘You stayed only ten days [on earth]’
20:104  We know best what they say- but the more perceptive of them will say, ‘Your stay [on earth] was only a single day.’
20:105  They ask you [Prophet] about the mountains: say, ‘[On that Day] my Lord will blast them into dus
20:106  and leave a flat plain
20:107  with no peak or trough to be seen
20:108  On that Day, people will follow the summoner from whom there is no escape; every voice will be hushed for the Lord of Mercy; only whispers will be heard
20:109  On that Day, intercession will be useless except from those to whom the Lord of Mercy has granted permission and whose words He approves
20:110  He knows what is before and behind them, though they do not comprehend Him
20:111  and [all] faces will be humbled before the Living, Ever Watchful One. Those burdened with evil deeds will despair
20:112  but whoever has done righteous deeds and believed need have no fear of injustice or deprivation.’
20:113  We have sent the Quran down in the Arabic tongue and given all kinds of warnings in it, so that they may beware or take heed
20:114  exalted be God, the one who is truly in control. [Prophet], do not rush to recite before the revelation is fully complete but say, ‘Lord, increase me in knowledge!’
20:115  We also commanded Adam before you, but he forgot and We found him lacking in constancy
20:116  When We said to the angels, ‘Bow down before Adam,’ they did. But Iblis refused
20:117  so We said, ‘Adam, this is your enemy, yours and your wife’s: do not let him drive you out of the garden and make you miserable
20:118  In the garden you will never go hungry, feel naked
20:119  be thirsty, or suffer the heat of the sun.’
20:120  But Satan whispered to Adam, saying, ‘Adam, shall I show you the tree of immortality and power that never decays?’
20:121  and they both ate from it. They became conscious of their nakedness and began to cover themselves with leaves from the garden. Adam disobeyed his Lord and was led astray
20:122  later his Lord brought him close, accepted his repentance, and guided him
20:123  God said, ‘Get out of the garden as each other’s enemy.’ Whoever follows My guidance, when it comes to you [people], will not go astray nor fall into misery
20:124  but whoever turns away from it will have a life of great hardship. We shall bring him blind to the Assembly on the Day of Resurrectio
20:125  and he will say, ‘Lord, why did You bring me here blind? I was sighted before!’
20:126  God will say, ‘This is how it is: You ignored Our revelations when they came to you, so today you will be ignored.’
20:127  This is how We reward those who go too far, and who do not believe in their Lord’s revelations. The greatest and most enduring punishment is in the Hereafter
20:128  Do they not draw a lesson from the many generations We destroyed before them, through whose dwelling places they now walk? There truly are signs in this for anyone with understanding
20:129  If it were not for a preordained Word from your Lord [Prophet], they would already have been destroyed. Their time has been set
20:130  so [Prophet] be patient with what they say- celebrate the praise of your Lord, before the rising and setting of the sun, celebrate His praise during the night, and at the beginning and end of the day, so that you may find contentment
20:131  and do not gaze longingly at what We have given some of them to enjoy, the finery of this present life: We test them through this, but the provision of your Lord is better and more lasting
20:132  Order your people to pray, and pray steadfastly yourself. We are not asking you to give Us provision;We provide for you, and the rewards of the Hereafter belong to the devout
20:133  The disbelievers say, ‘Why does he not bring us a sign from his Lord?’ Have they not been given clear proof confirming what was in the earlier scriptures
20:134  If We had destroyed them through punishment before this Messenger came, they would have said, ‘Lord, if only You had sent us a messenger, we could have followed Your revelations before we suffered humiliation and disgrace!’
20:135  [Prophet], say, ‘We are all waiting, so you carry on waiting: you will come to learn who has followed the even path, and been rightly guided.’