|This article does not cite any references (sources). (June 2010)|
|Position||Juzʼ 11 to 12|
|Hizb number||22 to 24|
|Number of verses||123|
|Number of Sajdahs||none|
Contents and themes
The main content of the sura is a series of stories of prophets who warned their people to follow God, the people persisting in defying God, and God punishing and killing them. The sura opens with a discussion on the nature of man and the punishment that awaits those who defy God. Ayat 25–49 tell the story of Noah and how his people did not believe his commands to follow God. The unbelievers are drowned in a flood, which includes Noah's son; Noah asks God about this act, but God rebukes Noah as being ignorant and says that Noah's son is "not a member of his family." Sura 66, At-Tahrim, elaborates on this and says that Noah's wife is an unbeliever in hell who was unfaithful to her husband.
Ayat 50–60 deal with the prophet Hud, the namesake of the Sura. He was sent to the A'ad, an Omani tribe which according to history crumbled sometime between the 3rd and 6th century AD. The A'ad do not believe Hud, and Hud and those who do believe are rescued by God, followed by God inflicting a "dreadful doom" on them so that they were "accursed in the world."[Quran 11:58–60 (Translated by Ahmed Ali)]
Ayat 61–68 concern the people of Thamud and the prophet Saleh. Saleh tries to convince Thamud to repent, but once more the unbelievers ignore the prophet. Saleh offers a she-camel as an offering of peace, but says that it should be left alone. If anything befalls it, the people will be punished. The camel is hamstrung, Saleh and those who believe are rescued, and the unbelievers are smitten by a "blast from heaven."[Quran 11:67 (Translated by Ahmed Ali)]
The Qu'ranic version of the Biblical story of Sodom and Gomorrah is in ayat 69–83. Abraham and Sarah are given the news of their son and grandson's forthcoming birth (Isaac and Jacob), after which they plead for mercy for Lot's people. God refuses the request, saying that the punishment cannot be averted. Lot offers his daughters to the men of Sodom, but they respond with disinterest and say "you know what we want." Sura 7:80–84 confirms the Biblical account of homosexuality as being the crime of Lot's people. Angels descend to protect Lot and his daughters, and the city is destroyed by a stone rain. Lot's wife perishes as well.
Ayat 84–95 deal with the prophet Shu'aib sent to Midian. Once more, the people ignore the prophet's warnings; this time, Shu'aib reminds the people of the fate of the people of Noah, Hud, Saleh, and Lot. It doesn't work, and the people spare Shu'aib from death by stoning only because he comes from a powerful clan. Shu'aib and those who believe are rescued by God. Afterward, the unbelievers "[were] seized by a punishment from heaven, and lay overturned in their homes in the morning as though they had not dwelt there at all."[Quran 11:94–95 (Translated by Ahmed Ali)]
The remaining text of the sura discusses the general theme once more, with occasional references to Moses. The harsh punishment is explained as "We did not wrong them; they wronged themselves." Other gods are decried as false, powerless, and useless. Believers are commanded to walk the straight path and follow God, and those who disbelieve will suffer in Hell.
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