Surah 18 - Al Kahf THE CAVE
018.001 Praise be to God, Who hath sent to His Servant the Book, and hath allowed
therein no Crookedness:
018.002 (He hath made it) Straight (and Clear) in order that He may warn (the
godless) of a terrible Punishment from Him, and that He may give Glad Tidings to the
Believers who work righteous deeds, that they shall have a goodly Reward,
018.003 Wherein they shall remain for ever:
018.004 Further, that He may warn those (also) who say, "God hath begotten a son":
018.005 No knowledge have they of such a thing, nor had their fathers. It is a
grievous thing that issues from their mouths as a saying what they say is nothing but
018.006 Thou wouldst only, perchance, fret thyself to death, following after them, in
grief, if they believe not in this Message.
018.007 That which is on earth we have made but as a glittering show for the earth,
in order that We may test them - as to which of them are best in conduct.
018.008 Verily what is on earth we shall make but as dust and dry soil (without
growth or herbage).
018.009 Or dost thou reflect that the Companions of the Cave and of the Inscription
were wonders among Our Sign?
018.010 Behold, the youths betook themselves to the Cave: they said, "Our Lord!
bestow on us Mercy from Thyself, and dispose of our affair for us in the right
018.011 Then We drew (a veil) over their ears, for a number of years, in the Cave,
(so that they heard not):
018.012 Then We roused them, in order to test which of the two parties was best at
calculating the term of years they had tarried!
018.013 We relate to thee their story in truth: they were youths who believed
Lord, and We advanced them in guidance:
018.014 We gave strength to their hearts: Behold, they stood up and said: "Our
is the Lord of the heavens and of the earth: never shall we call upon any god other
than Him: if we did, we should indeed have uttered an enormity!
018.015 "These our people have taken for worship gods other than Him: why do they
not bring forward an authority clear (and convincing) for what they do? Who doth
more wrong than such as invent a falsehood against God?
018.016 "When ye turn away from them and the things they worship other than God,
betake yourselves to the Cave: Your Lord will shower His mercies on you and
dispose of your affair towards comfort and ease."
018.017 Thou wouldst have seen the sun, when it rose, declining to the right from
their Cave, and when it set, turning away from them to the left, while they lay
open space in the midst of the Cave. Such are among the Signs of God: He whom
God, guides is rightly guided; but he whom God leaves to stray,- for him wilt thou
find no protector to lead him to the Right Way.
018.018 Thou wouldst have deemed them awake, whilst they were asleep, and We
turned them on their right and on their left sides: their dog stretching forth
fore-legs on the threshold: if thou hadst come up on to them, thou wouldst have
certainly turned back from them in flight, and wouldst certainly have been filled with
terror of them.
018.019 Such (being their state), we raised them up (from sleep), that they might
question each other. Said one of them, "How long have ye stayed (here)?" They said,
"We have stayed (perhaps) a day, or part of a day." (At length) they (all) said, "God
(alone) knows best how long ye have stayed here.... Now send ye then one of you
with this money of yours to the town: let him find out which is the best food (to be
had) and bring some to you, that (ye may) satisfy your hunger therewith: And let him
behave with care and courtesy, and let him not inform any one about you.
018.020 "For if they should come upon you, they would stone you or force you to
return to their cult, and in that case ye would never attain prosperity."
018.021 Thus did We make their case known to the people, that they might know
that the promise of God is true, and that there can be no doubt about the Hour
Judgment. Behold, they dispute among themselves as to their affair. (Some) said,
"Construct a building over them": Their Lord knows best about them: those who
prevailed over their affair said, "Let us surely build a place of worship over
018.022 (Some) say they were three, the dog being the fourth among them; (others)
say they were five, the dog being the sixth,- doubtfully guessing at the unknown; (yet
others) say they were seven, the dog being the eighth. Say thou: "My Lord knoweth
best their number; It is but few that know their (real case)." Enter not, therefore, into
controversies concerning them, except on a matter that is clear, nor consult any of
them about (the affair of) the Sleepers.
018.023 Nor say of anything, "I shall be sure to do so and so tomorrow"-
018.024 Without adding, "So please God!" and call thy Lord to mind when thou
forgettest, and say, "I hope that my Lord will guide me ever closer (even) than
the right road."
018.025 So they stayed in their Cave three hundred years, and (some) add nine
018.026 Say: "God knows best how long they stayed: with Him is (the knowledge
the secrets of the heavens and the earth: how clearly He sees, how finely He hears
(everything)! They have no protector other than Him; nor does He share His
Command with any person whatsoever.
018.027 And recite (and teach) what has been revealed to thee of the Book of thy
Lord: none can change His Words, and none wilt thou find as a refuge other than
018.028 And keep thy soul content with those who call on their Lord morning and
evening, seeking His Face; and let not thine eyes pass beyond them, seeking the
and glitter of this Life; nor obey any whose heart We have permitted to neglect
remembrance of Us, one who follows his own desires, whose case has gone beyond
018.029 Say, "The truth is from your Lord": Let him who will believe, and let
who will, reject (it): for the wrong-doers We have prepared a Fire whose (smoke
flames), like the walls and roof of a tent, will hem them in: if they implore relief they
will be granted water like melted brass, that will scald their faces, how dreadful the
drink! How uncomfortable a couch to recline on!
018.030 As to those who believe and work righteousness, verily We shall not suffer
to perish the reward of any who do a (single) righteous deed.
018.031 For them will be Gardens of Eternity; beneath them rivers will flow; they
will be adorned therein with bracelets of gold, and they will wear green garments of
fine silk and heavy brocade: They will recline therein on raised thrones. How good
the recompense! How beautiful a couch to recline on!
018.032 Set forth to them the parable of two men: for one of them We
gardens of grape-vines and surrounded them with date palms; in between the two
018.033 Each of those gardens brought forth its produce, and failed not in the
therein: in the midst of them We caused a river to flow.
018.034 (Abundant) was the produce this man had : he said to his companion, in
course of a mutual argument: "more wealth have I than you, and more honour and
power in (my following of) men."
018.035 He went into his garden in a state (of mind) unjust to his soul: He said, "I
deem not that this will ever perish,
018.036 "Nor do I deem that the Hour (of Judgment) will (ever) come: Even if I
brought back to my Lord, I shall surely find (there) something better in exchange."
018.037 His companion said to him, in the course of the argument with him: "Dost
thou deny Him Who created thee out of dust, then out of a sperm-drop, then fashioned
thee into a man?
018.038 "But (I think) for my part that He is God, My Lord, and none shall I
associate with my Lord.
018.039 "Why didst thou not, as thou wentest into thy garden, say: 'God's will
done)! There is no power but with God!' If thou dost see me less than thee in wealth
018.040 "It may be that my Lord will give me something better than thy garden,
that He will send on thy garden thunderbolts (by way of reckoning) from heaven,
making it (but) slippery sand!-
018.041 "Or the water of the garden will run off underground so that thou wilt
be able to find it."
018.042 So his fruits (and enjoyment) were encompassed (with ruin), and he
remained twisting and turning his hands over what he had spent on his property,
which had (now) tumbled to pieces to its very foundations, and he could only say,
"Woe is me! Would I had never ascribed partners to my Lord and Cherisher!"
018.043 Nor had he numbers to help him against God, nor was he able to deliver
018.044 There, the (only) protection comes from God, the True One. He is the Best
to reward, and the Best to give success.
018.045 Set forth to them the similitude of the life of this world: It is like
which we send down from the skies: the earth's vegetation absorbs it, but soon
becomes dry stubble, which the winds do scatter: it is (only) God who prevails
018.046 Wealth and sons are allurements of the life of this world: But the things that
endure, good deeds, are best in the sight of thy Lord, as rewards, and best as
foundation for) hopes.
018.047 One Day We shall remove the mountains, and thou wilt see the earth as
level stretch, and We shall gather them, all together, nor shall We leave out any one
018.048 And they will be marshalled before thy Lord in ranks, (with the
announcement), "Now have ye come to Us (bare) as We created you first: aye, ye
thought We shall not fulfil the appointment made to you to meet (Us)!":
018.049 And the Book (of Deeds) will be placed (before you); and thou wilt see
sinful in great terror because of what is (recorded) therein; they will say, "Ah! woe to
us! what a Book is this! It leaves out nothing small or great, but takes account
thereof!" They will find all that they did, placed before them: And not one will thy
Lord treat with injustice.
018.050 Behold! We said to the angels, "Bow down to Adam": They bowed down
except Iblis. He was one of the Jinns, and he broke the Command of his Lord. Will ye
then take him and his progeny as protectors rather than Me? And they are enemies to
you! Evil would be the exchange for the wrong-doers!
018.051 I called them not to witness the creation of the heavens and the earth, nor
(even) their own creation: nor is it for Me to take as helpers such
as lead (men) astray!
018.052 One Day He will say, "Call on those whom ye thought to be My partners,"
and they will call on them, but they will not listen to them; and We shall make
them a place of common perdition.
018.053 And the Sinful shall see the fire and apprehend that they have to fall
no means will they find to turn away therefrom.
018.054 We have explained in detail in this Qur'an, for the benefit of mankind, every
kind of similitude: but man is, in most things, contentious.
018.055 And what is there to keep back men from believing, now that Guidance has
come to them, nor from praying for forgiveness from their Lord, but that (they
that) the ways of the ancients be repeated with them, or the Wrath be brought to them
face to face?
018.056 We only send the messengers to give Glad Tidings and to give warnings: But
the unbelievers dispute with vain argument, in order therewith to weaken the truth,
and they treat My Signs as a jest, as also the fact that they are warned!
018.057 And who doth more wrong than one who is reminded of the Signs of his
Lord, but turns away from them, forgetting the (deeds) which his hands have sent
forth? Verily We have set veils over their hearts lest they should understand this, and
over their ears, deafness, if thou callest them to guidance, even then will they never
018.058 But your Lord is Most forgiving, full of Mercy. If He were to call them (at
once) to account for what they have earned, then surely He would have earned, then
surely He would have hastened their punishment: but they have their appointed time,
beyond which they will find no refuge.
018.059 Such were the populations we destroyed when they committed iniquities;
but we fixed an appointed time for their destruction.
018.060 Behold, Moses said to his attendant, "I will not give up until I reach
junction of the two seas or (until) I spend years and years in travel."
018.061 But when they reached the Junction, they forgot (about) their Fish, which
took its course through the sea (straight) as in a tunnel.
018.062 When they had passed on (some distance), Moses said to his
attendant: "Bring us our early meal; truly we have suffered much fatigue
at this (stage of) our
018.063 He replied: "Sawest thou (what happened) when we betook ourselves to the
rock? I did indeed forget (about) the Fish: none but Satan made me forget to tell (you)
about it: it took its course through the sea in a marvellous way!"
018.064 Moses said: "That was what we were seeking after:" So they went back on
their footsteps, following (the path they had come).
018.065 So they found one of Our servants, on whom We had bestowed Mercy from
Ourselves and whom We had taught knowledge from Our own Presence.
018.066 Moses said to him: "May I follow thee, on the footing that thou teach
something of the (Higher) Truth which thou hast been taught?"
018.067 (The other) said: "Verily thou wilt not be able to have patience with
018.068 "And how canst thou have patience about things about which thy
understanding is not complete?"
018.069 Moses said: "Thou wilt find me, if God so will, (truly) patient: nor shall I
disobey thee in aught."
018.070 The other said: "If then thou wouldst follow me, ask me no questions about
anything until I myself speak to thee concerning it."
018.071 So they both proceeded: until, when they were in the boat, he scuttled
Said Moses: "Hast thou scuttled it in order to drown those in it? Truly a strange thing
hast thou done!"
018.072 He answered: "Did I not tell thee that thou canst have no patience with me?"
018.073 Moses said: "Rebuke me not for forgetting, nor grieve me by raising
difficulties in my case."
018.074 Then they proceeded: until, when they met a young man, he slew him.
Moses said: "Hast thou slain an innocent person who had slain none? Truly a foul
(unheard of) thing hast thou done!"
018.075 He answered: "Did I not tell thee that thou canst have no patience with me?"
018.076 (Moses) said: "If ever I ask thee about anything after this, keep me not in thy
company: then wouldst thou have received (full) excuse from my side."
018.077 Then they proceeded: until, when they came to the inhabitants of a town,
they asked them for food, but they refused them hospitality. They found there a
on the point of falling down, but he set it up straight. (Moses) said: "If thou
wished, surely thou couldst have exacted some recompense for it!"
018.078 He answered: "This is the parting between me and thee: now will I tell
the interpretation of (those things) over which thou wast unable to hold patience.
018.079 "As for the boat, it belonged to certain men in dire want: they plied
water: I but wished to render it unserviceable, for there was after them a certain king
who seized on every boat by force.
018.080 "As for the youth, his parents were people of Faith, and we feared that he
would grieve them by obstinate rebellion and ingratitude (to God and man).
018.081 "So we desired that their Lord would give them in exchange (a son) better in
purity (of conduct) and closer in affection.
018.082 "As for the wall, it belonged to two youths, orphans, in the Town; there was,
beneath it, a buried treasure, to which they were entitled: their father had been a
righteous man: So thy Lord desired that they should attain their age of full strength
and get out their treasure - a mercy (and favour) from thy Lord. I did it not of my own
accord. Such is the interpretation of (those things) over which thou wast unable to
018.083 They ask thee concerning Zul-qarnain. Say, "I will rehearse to you
something of his story."
018.084 Verily We established his power on earth, and We gave him the ways and
the means to all ends.
018.085 One (such) way he followed,
018.086 Until, when he reached the setting of the sun, he found it set in a spring of
murky water: Near it he found a People: We said: "O Zul-qarnain! (thou hast
authority,) either to punish them, or to treat them with kindness."
018.087 He said: "Whoever doth wrong, him shall we punish; then shall he be sent
back to his Lord; and He will punish him with a punishment unheard-of (before).
018.088 "But whoever believes, and works righteousness,- he shall have a goodly
reward, and easy will be his task as We order it by our Command."
018.089 Then followed he (another) way,
018.090 Until, when he came to the rising of the sun, he found it rising on a
for whom We had provided no covering protection against the sun.
018.091 (He left them) as they were: We completely understood what was before
018.092 Then followed he (another) way,
018.093 Until, when he reached (a tract) between two mountains, he found, beneath
them, a people who scarcely understood a word.
018.094 They said: "O Zul-qarnain! the Gog and Magog (People) do great mischief
on earth: shall we then render thee tribute in order that thou mightest erect a
between us and them?
018.095 He said: "(The power) in which my Lord has established me is better (than
tribute): Help me therefore with strength (and labour): I will erect a strong barrier
between you and them:
018.096 "Bring me blocks of iron." At length, when he had filled up the space
between the two steep mountain-sides, He said, "Blow (with your bellows)" Then,
when he had made it (red) as fire, he said: "Bring me, that I may pour over it,
018.097 Thus were they made powerless to scale it or to dig through it.
018.098 He said: "This is a mercy from my Lord: But when the promise of my Lord
comes to pass, He will make it into dust; and the promise of my Lord is true."
018.099 On that day We shall leave them to surge like waves on one another: the
trumpet will be blown, and We shall collect them all together.
018.100 And We shall present Hell that day for Unbelievers to see, all spread
018.101 (Unbelievers) whose eyes had been under a veil from remembrance of Me,
and who had been unable even to hear.
018.102 Do the Unbelievers think that they can take My servants as protectors
besides Me? Verily We have prepared Hell for the Unbelievers for (their)
018.103 Say: "Shall we tell you of those who lose most in respect of their deeds?-
018.104 "Those whose efforts have been wasted in this life, while they thought
they were acquiring good by their works?"
018.105 They are those who deny the Signs of their Lord and the fact of their
to meet Him (in the Hereafter): vain will be their works, nor shall We, on the
Judgment, give them any weight.
018.106 That is their reward, Hell, because they rejected Faith, and took My Signs
and My Messengers by way of jest.
018.107 As to those who believe and work righteous deeds, they have, for their
entertainment, the Gardens of Paradise,
018.108 Wherein they shall dwell (for aye): no change will they wish for from
018.109 Say: "If the ocean were ink (wherewith to write out) the words of my Lord,
sooner would the ocean be exhausted than would the words of my Lord, even if we
added another ocean like it, for its aid."
018.110 Say: "I am but a man like yourselves, (but) the inspiration has come to me,
that your God is one God: whoever expects to meet his Lord, let him work
righteousness, and, in the worship of his Lord, admit no one as partner.