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Sura 5 of the Quran
The Table Spread with Food
Classification Medinan
Other names The Feast
Position Juzʼ 6 to 7
Hizb no. 11 to 13
No. of Rukus 16
No. of verses 120
No. of Sajdahs none
← An-Nisa

Surat al-Māʼida (Arabic: سورة المائدة‎, "The Table" or "The Table Spread with Food", likely a word of Ethiopic origin) is the fifth chapter of the Quran, with 120 verses. It is a Medinan sura. The sura's topics include animals which are forbidden, Isa (Jesus') and Musa's (Moses) missions.

Notable verses[edit]

Verse 3[edit]

This verse has a Parenthetical Sentence: "This day have those who disbelieve despaired of your religion, so fear them not, and fear Me. This day have I perfected for you your religion and completed My favor on you and chosen for you Islam as a religion.."[Quran 5:3] This verse was revealed at Arafat as reported in the authentic hadith:

Narrated 'Umar bin Al-Khattab: Once a Jew said to me, "O the chief of believers! There is a verse in your Holy Book Which is read by all of you (Muslims), and had it been revealed to us, we would have taken that day (on which it was revealed) as a day of celebration." 'Umar bin Al-Khattab asked, "Which is that verse?" The Jew replied, "This day I have perfected your religion For you, completed My favor upon you, And have chosen for you Islam as your religion." (5:3) 'Umar replied,"No doubt, we know when and where this verse was revealed to the Prophet. It was Friday and the Prophet was standing at 'Arafat (i.e. the Day of Hajj).

— Bukhari

Verse 8[edit]

Contains the passage: "Do not let the injustice of others lead you into injustice".[Quran 5:8]

Verses 32 & 33[edit]

These verses have been quoted to denounce killing, by using an abbreviated form such as, "If anyone slays a person, it would be as if he slew the whole people: and if anyone saved a life, it would be as if he saved the life of the whole people". This verse is similar to that of one from the Talmud.[Quran 5:32][Quran 5:33] The use of this abbreviated rephrasing has been criticised as misleading by Andrew Bostom inter alia.[1][2][3]

Verse 51[edit]

Verse 51 has been said to underlie forbidding non-Muslims as becoming leaders in Islamic countries. The verse Sahih International reads: "O you who have believed, do not take the Jews and the Christians as allies. They are [in fact] allies of one another. And whoever is an ally to them among you - then indeed, he is [one] of them. Indeed, Allah guides not the wrongdoing people."[4][Quran 5:51]

Verse 54[edit]

In Sahih International:

O you who have believed, whoever of you should revert from his religion - Allah will bring forth [in place of them] a people He will love and who will love Him [who are] humble toward the believers, powerful against the disbelievers; they strive in the cause of Allah and do not fear the blame of a critic. That is the favor of Allah ; He bestows it upon whom He wills. And Allah is all-Encompassing and Knowing.[4]

Verse 54 is also interesting in relation to who the "beloved" are; some hadith view it as being Abu Musa al-Ashari.[5][Quran 5:54]

The Shia view[edit]

On the Shia interpretation of this verse, God used the singular form "waliyyukum" implying the "wilayah" (Guardianship of the believers) is a single project. In other words, the "wilayah" of the messenger and that of the Ali springs from the root of God's wilayah. The word "wali" in the context of this verse cannot mean "friend" because there is not a single verse in the Quran where God says that any one of his messengers is a friend or helper of their followers. Further if the verse implied "wilayah" in the sense of friend or helper, then the singular form "waliyyukum" would not have been used but the plural form "awliya'ukum" would be appropriate because the "friendship" of God is unique.[citation needed]

Tahir ul Qadri writes regarding this verse:[6]

A narration attributed to Ammar bin Yasir reports:

A beggar came up to 'Ali and stood beside him. He was kneeling in prayer. He ('Ali) pulled out his ring and he gave the ring to the beggar. Then 'Ali called on the Prophet and told him the news. At this occasion, this verse was revealed to him: (Surely your (helping) friend is Allah and His Messenger and (along with them) are the believers who establish prayers, pay zakah and bow down (in humility before Allah). Allah's Messenger read out the verse and said: One who has me as his master has 'Ali as his master. O Allah! Be his friend who befriends him ('Ali) and be his enemy who is his enemy.

Sunnis tend to view this with differing views
Shi'as tend to view this as Sahih

Verse 67[edit]

Verse 67 is relevant to The Farewell Pilgrimage and Ghadir Khumm.[Quran 5:67]

Verses 72 & 73[edit]

The Quran: An Encyclopedia says, "The Quran’s objection to Christian practice is Christianity’s shirk, its worship of Jesus, Mary and the saints ‘in derogation of Allah’. There is no justification in believing in the Trinity, for Jesus never would have condoned such a concept".[7] In Sahih International: "(72) They have certainly disbelieved who say, " Allah is the Messiah, the son of Mary" while the Messiah has said, "O Children of Israel, worship Allah , my Lord and your Lord." Indeed, he who associates others with Allah - Allah has forbidden him Paradise, and his refuge is the Fire And there are not for the wrongdoers any helpers. (73) They have certainly disbelieved who say, Allah is the third of three. And there is no god except one God. And if they do not desist from what they are saying, there will surely afflict the disbelievers among them a painful punishment."[4][Quran 5:72–73]

Repercussions and contemporary incidents[edit]

Al-Ma'ida Verse 51 has resulted in repercussions in modern politics. For example, criticism and violent protests ensued against Basuki Tjahaja Purnama, the Chinese-Christian governor of Jakarta, Indonesia, after his declaration that Indonesians should not be deceived by those people who are using Surat Al-Ma'ida verse 51 to not elect non-Muslims as their leaders.[8][9] This resulted in big protests against him demanding his arrest on charges of blaspheming the Quran.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Andrijasevic, Mladen (4 July 2009). "Obama quotes verse 5:32, omits 5:33". American Thinker. Retrieved 5 May 2016. 
  2. ^ Amuhd (7 July 2015). "Whoever kills a person (unjustly) …it is as though he has killed all mankind.….Quran 5:32". Telegraph. Archived from the original on 8 March 2016. Retrieved 5 May 2016. 
  3. ^ Zaimov, Stoyan (24 August 2016). "Muslim-Americans Condemn ISIS in Phoenix Billboard, Say Islam Is Religion of Peace, Not Terror". Christian Post. Retrieved 9 October 2016. 
  4. ^ a b c [1]
  5. ^ Ahadith In Praise Of The Ash`Aris
  6. ^ The Ghadir Declaration, By Dr. Tahir al-Qadiri, Page 48 & 49 [2] [3] Archived October 20, 2006, at the Wayback Machine.
  7. ^ Leaman, Oliver, ed. (2006). "The Qur'an: an Encyclopedia" (PDF). Routledge. pp. 144–145. ISBN 0-415-32639-7. Retrieved 22 November 2014. 
  8. ^ Durie, Mark (November 2016). "Violent Protests in Indonesia Blow an Ill Will for Religious Tolerance". New English Review. Retrieved 18 November 2016. 
  9. ^ McBeth, John (8 November 2016). "Blasphemy probe rocks Indonesia's secular foundations". The National. Retrieved 18 November 2016. 

External links[edit]