Sura 8: The Spoils of War (Al-Anfal)
Number of verses in sura: 75
Order of revelation: 88
[8:0] In the name of God, Most Gracious, Most Merciful
[8:1] They consult you about the spoils of war. Say, "The spoils of war belong to GOD and the messenger." You shall observe GOD, exhort one another to be righteous, and obey GOD and His messenger, if you are believers.
The True Believers
[8:2] The true believers are those whose hearts tremble when GOD is mentioned, and when His revelations are recited to them, their faith is strengthened, and they trust in their Lord.
[8:3] They observe the Contact Prayers (Salat), and from our provisions to them, they give to charity.
[8:4] Such are the true believers. They attain high ranks at their Lord, as well as forgiveness and a generous provision.
The Weak Believers
[8:5] When your Lord willed that you leave your home, to fulfill a specific plan, some believers became exposed as reluctant believers.
[8:6] They argued with you against the truth, even after everything was explained to them. They acted as if they were being driven to certain death.
[8:7] Recall that GOD promised you victory over a certain group, but you still wanted to face the weaker group. It was GOD's plan to establish the truth with His words, and to defeat the disbelievers.
[8:8] For He has decreed that the truth shall prevail, and the falsehood shall vanish, in spite of the evildoers.
God's Invisible Soldiers
[8:9] Thus, when you implored your Lord to come to the rescue, He responded to you: "I am supporting you with one thousand angels in succession."
Victory Guaranteed for the Believers
[8:10] GOD gave you this good news to strengthen your hearts. Victory comes only from GOD. GOD is Almighty, Most Wise.
[8:11] He caused peaceful slumber to overtake you and pacify you, and He sent down water from the sky to clean you therewith. He protected you from the devil's curse, reassured your hearts and strengthened your foothold.
Lessons from History*
[8:12] Recall that your Lord inspired the angels: "I am with you; so support those who believed. I will throw terror into the hearts of those who disbelieved. You may strike them above the necks, and you may strike even every finger."
*8:12-16 All wars are governed by the basic rule in 60:8-9.
[8:13] This is what they have justly incurred by fighting GOD and His messenger. For those who fight against GOD and His messenger, GOD's retribution is severe.
[8:14] This is to punish the disbelievers; they have incurred the retribution of Hell.
[8:15] O you who believe, if you encounter the disbelievers who have mobilized against you, do not turn back and flee.
[8:16] Anyone who turns back on that day, except to carry out a battle plan, or to join his group, has incurred wrath from GOD, and his abode is Hell; what a miserable destiny!
God Is Doing Everything*
[8:17] It was not you who killed them; GOD is the One who killed them. It was not you who threw when you threw; GOD is the One who threw. But He thus gives the believers a chance to earn a lot of credit. GOD is Hearer, Omniscient.
*8:17 Believing in God necessitates believing in His qualities, one of which is that He is doing everything. Without knowing God, there is no belief (23:84-90). Bad things are incurred by us, and executed by Satan, in accordance with God's laws (4:78-79, 42:30).
[8:18] Additionally, GOD thus nullifies the schemes of the disbelievers.
[8:19] You sought victory (O disbelievers), and victory did come; it belonged to the believers. If you refrain (from aggression) it would be better for you, but if you return, so will we. Your armies will never help you, no matter how great. For GOD is on the side of the believers.
[8:20] O you who believe, obey GOD and His messenger, and do not disregard him while you hear.
The Disbelievers Blocked Out
[8:21] Do not be like those who say, "We hear," when they do not hear.
[8:22] The worst creatures in the sight of GOD are the deaf and dumb, who do not understand.
[8:23] Had GOD known of any good in them, He would have made them hearers. Even if He made them hearers, they still would turn away in aversion.
The Righteous Do Not Really Die*
[8:24] O you who believe, you shall respond to GOD and to the messenger when he invites you to what gives you life.* You should know that GOD is closer to you than your heart, and that before Him you will be summoned.
*8:24 See Appendix 17. When the righteous exit their bodies, they go straight to Heaven.
[8:25] Beware of a retribution that may not be limited to the evildoers among you.* You should know that GOD's retribution is severe.
*8:25 A community that tolerates homosexuality, for example, may be hit by an earthquake.
God Supports the Believers
[8:26] Remember that you used to be few and oppressed, fearing that the people may snatch you, and He granted you a secure sanctuary, supported you with His victory, and provided you with good provisions, that you may be appreciative.
[8:27] O you who believe, do not betray GOD and the messenger, and do not betray those who trust you, now that you know.
Money And Children Are Tests
[8:28] You should know that your money and your children are a test, and that GOD possesses a great recompense.
[8:29] O you who believe, if you reverence GOD, He will enlighten you, remit your sins, and forgive you. GOD possesses infinite grace.
God Protects His Messenger*
[8:30] The disbelievers plot and scheme to neutralize you, or kill you, or banish you. However, they plot and scheme, but so does GOD. GOD is the best schemer.
*8:30 God chose His final prophet, Muhammad, from the strongest tribe of Arabia. It was tribal law and traditions that prevented the disbelievers - by God's leave - from killing Muhammad. Similarly, it was God's will to move His Messenger of the Covenant from the Middle East, where he would have been killed, to the U.S.A. where God's message can flourish and reach every corner of the globe. This is mathematically confirmed: the sura & verse numbers= 8+30=19x2.
[8:31] When our revelations are recited to them, they say, "We have heard. If we wanted to, we could have said the same things. These are no more than tales from the past!"
[8:32] They also said, "Our god, if this is really the truth from You, then shower us with rocks from the sky, or pour upon us a painful punishment."
[8:33] However, GOD is not to punish them while you are in their midst; GOD is not to punish them while they are seeking forgiveness.
[8:34] Have they not deserved GOD's retribution, by repelling others from the Sacred Masjid, even though they are not the custodians thereof? The true custodians thereof are the righteous, but most of them do not know.
The Contact Prayers (Salat)
Existed Before the Quran*
[8:35] Their Contact Prayers (Salat) at the shrine (Ka`bah) were no more than a mockery and a means of repelling the people (by crowding them out). Therefore, suffer the retribution for your disbelief.
*8:35 All religious practices in Islam came to us through Abraham; when the Quran was revealed, all rites in "Submission" were already in existence (21:73, 22:78).
Spending Their Money to Fight God*
[8:36] Those who disbelieve spend their money to repel others from the way of GOD. They will spend it, then it will turn into sorrow and remorse for them. Ultimately, they will be defeated, and all disbelievers will be summoned to Hell.
*8:36 The idol worshiping leaders of corrupted Islam, Saudi Arabia, have allocated huge sums of money annually to fight God and His miracle. For example, the famous Lebanese publisher Dr Al-`Ilm Lil-Malyn (Knowledge for the Millions) published the Arabic version of "The Miracle of the Quran" in March, 1983. The Saudis bought all the copies and destroyed them.
[8:37] GOD will sift away the bad from the good, then pile the bad on top of each other, all in one pile, then throw it in Hell. Such are the losers.
[8:38] Tell those who disbelieved: if they stop, all their past will be forgiven. But if they return, they will incur the same fate as their previous counterparts.
[8:39] You shall fight them to ward off oppression, and to practice your religion devoted to GOD alone. If they refrain from aggression, then GOD is fully Seer of everything they do.
[8:40] If they turn away, then you should know that GOD is your Lord and Master; the best Lord and Master, the best supporter.
[8:41] You should know that if you gain any spoils in war, one-fifth shall go to GOD and the messenger, to be given to the relatives, the orphans, the poor, and the traveling alien. You will do this if you believe in GOD and in what we revealed to our servant on the day of decision, the day the two armies clashed. GOD is Omnipotent.
God Controls Everything and Plans for the Believer
[8:42] Recall that you were on this side of the valley, while they were on the other side. Then their caravan had to move to lower ground. Had you planned it this way, you could not have done it. But GOD was to carry out a predetermined matter, whereby those destined to be annihilated were annihilated for an obvious reason, and those destined to be saved were saved for an obvious reason. GOD is Hearer, Omniscient.
[8:43] GOD made them appear in your dream (O Muhammad) fewer in number. Had He made them appear more numerous, you would have failed, and you would have disputed among yourselves. But GOD saved the situation. He is Knower of the innermost thoughts.
[8:44] And when the time came and you faced them, He made them appear fewer in your eyes, and made you appear fewer in their eyes as well. For GOD willed to carry out a certain plan. All decisions are made by GOD.
[8:45] O you who believe, when you encounter an army, you shall hold fast and commemorate GOD frequently, that you may succeed.
[8:46] You shall obey GOD and His messenger, and do not dispute among yourselves, lest you fail and scatter your strength. You shall steadfastly persevere. GOD is with those who steadfastly persevere.
[8:47] Do not be like those who left their homes grudgingly, only to show off, and in fact discouraged others from following the path of GOD. GOD is fully aware of everything they do.
The Devil Sees God's Invisible Soldiers
[8:48] The devil had adorned their works in their eyes, and said, "You cannot be defeated by any people today," and "I will be fighting along with you." But as soon as the two armies faced each other, he turned back on his heels and fled, saying, "I disown you. I see what you do not see. I am afraid of GOD. GOD's retribution is awesome."
[8:49] The hypocrites and those who harbored doubt in their hearts said, "These people are deceived by their religion." However, if one puts his trust in GOD, then GOD is Almighty, Most Wise.
[8:50] If you could only see those who disbelieved when the angels put them to death! They will beat them on their faces and their rear ends: "Taste the retribution of Hell.
[8:51] "This is a consequence of what your hands have sent forth. GOD is never unjust towards the creatures."
[8:52] This is the same fate as that of Pharaoh's people and those who disbelieved before them. They rejected GOD's revelations, and GOD punished them for their sins. GOD is powerful, and His retribution is severe.
Retribution: A Consequence of Sin
[8:53] GOD does not change a blessing He has bestowed upon any people unless they themselves decide to change. GOD is Hearer, Omniscient.
[8:54] Such was the case with the people of Pharaoh and others before them. They first rejected the signs of their Lord. Consequently, we annihilated them for their sins. We drowned Pharaoh's people; the wicked were consistently punished.
[8:55] The worst creatures in the sight of GOD are those who disbelieved; they cannot believe.
[8:56] You reach agreements with them, but they violate their agreements every time; they are not righteous.
[8:57] Therefore, if you encounter them in war, you shall set them up as a deterrent example for those who come after them, that they may take heed.
[8:58] When you are betrayed by a group of people, you shall mobilize against them in the same manner. GOD does not love the betrayers.
[8:59] Let not those who disbelieve think that they can get away with it; they can never escape.
You Shall Be Prepared: A Divine Commandment
[8:60] You shall prepare for them all the power you can muster, and all the equipment you can mobilize, that you may frighten the enemies of GOD, your enemies, as well as others who are not known to you; GOD knows them. Whatever you spend in the cause of GOD will be repaid to you generously, without the least injustice.
[8:61] If they resort to peace, so shall you, and put your trust in GOD. He is the Hearer, the Omniscient.
God Suffices the Believers
[8:62] If they want to deceive you, then GOD will suffice you. He will help you with His support, and with the believers.
[8:63] He has reconciled the hearts (of the believers). Had you spent all the money on earth, you could not reconcile their hearts. But GOD did reconcile them. He is Almighty, Most Wise.
[8:64] O you prophet, sufficient for you is GOD and the believers who have followed you.
[8:65] O you prophet, you shall exhort the believers to fight. If there are twenty of you who are steadfast, they can defeat two hundred, and a hundred of you can defeat a thousand of those who disbelieved. That is because they are people who do not understand.
[8:66] Now (that many new people have joined you) GOD has made it easier for you, for He knows that you are not as strong as you used to be. Henceforth, a hundred steadfast believers can defeat two hundred, and a thousand of you can defeat two thousand by GOD's leave. GOD is with those who steadfastly persevere.
[8:67] No prophet shall acquire captives, unless he participates in the fighting. You people are seeking the materials of this world, while GOD advocates the Hereafter. GOD is Almighty, Most Wise.
[8:68] If it were not for a predetermined decree from GOD, you would have suffered, on account of what you took, a terrible retribution.
[8:69] Therefore, eat from the spoils you have earned, that which is lawful and good, and observe GOD. GOD is Forgiver, Most Merciful.
[8:70] O you prophet, tell the prisoners of war in your hands, "If GOD knew of anything good in your hearts, He would have given you better than anything you have lost, and would have forgiven you. GOD is Forgiver, Most Merciful."
[8:71] And if they want to betray you, they have already betrayed GOD. This is why He made them the losers. GOD is Omniscient, Most Wise.
[8:72] Surely, those who believed, and emigrated, and strove with their money and their lives in the cause of GOD, as well as those who hosted them and gave them refuge, and supported them, they are allies of one another. As for those who believe, but do not emigrate with you, you do not owe them any support, until they do emigrate. However, if they need your help, as brethren in faith, you shall help them, except against people with whom you have signed a peace treaty. GOD is Seer of everything you do.
[8:73] Those who disbelieved are allies of one another. Unless you keep these commandments, there will be chaos on earth, and terrible corruption.
[8:74] Those who believed and emigrated, and strove in the cause of GOD, as well as those who hosted them and gave them refuge, and supported them, these are the true believers. They have deserved forgiveness and a generous recompense.
[8:75] Those who believed afterwards, and emigrated, and strove with you, they belong with you. Those who are related to each other shall be the first to support each other, in accordance with GOD's commandments. GOD is fully aware of all things.
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