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Five Primary Themes of the Qur’an: Surahs of Mary, the Prophets, and the Counsel Essay

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Updated: Mar 7th, 2022

Introduction

Muslims have the conviction that the Qur’an holds all the acumen and understanding that Allah gave to humankind to lead a virtuous life and revere him accordingly. The Qur’an explains all that man is supposed to do to please Allah. Besides, it gives an account of the consequences of sins. According to Muslims, the Qur’an is the ultimate revelation to humanity. Hence, it carries a universal message. This paper will look at the five principal themes portrayed in Surah of Mary (19), Surah of the Prophets (21), and Surah of the Counsel (42).

Themes in Surah of the Prophets (21)

One of the themes discussed in this Surah is suspicion by people that Allah could use man as his messenger. People did not believe in what Prophet Muhammad told them. Some went to the extent of asking Allah to “send them signs like the ones that were sent to the (prophets) of old” (21:5). Another theme present in this Surah is the castigation of humankind for putting forward diverse and clashing oppositions against the Qur’an and the Holy Prophet.

The Surah attempts to bring out the correlation between the present Prophets and those of the past. In (21:7), the Qur’an clarifies that during the old days, God sent men as his prophets, and he inspired them. The Qur’an urges those opposed to the Prophets to seek counsel from people that understand the message. The Qur’an has been revealed to man to help him understand and live according to God’s word (21:10). Humanity has the duty to read and understand the Qur’an.

The Qur’an has proved that people lack knowledge, and thus they sin or have negative perceptions about life. Initially, people had the perception that life was simply a pastime and sport. They believed that life was worth no purpose and no one would be accountable for how he or she spent his or her life. The Qur’an warns that heaven and earth were not created for sport, and if it were Allah’s intention to give people a pastime, he could have given it through things that are closest to humanity (21:16-17).

Admonition and reproach have been applied to do away with misinterpretation among the people. People believed that Prophet Muhammad was a false prophet since Allah did not bring punishment upon those who opposed his teachings. The Qur’an warns that most of the people that mocked the prophets who came before Prophet Muhammad suffered the wrath of the issues they ridiculed (21:41).

Man is a being of rush. The Qur’an depicts mankind as a creature that is never patient. It shows how people always want things to happen swiftly because they doubt Allah’s teachings. Due to their impatience, they went to the extent of ridiculing the prophets by asking them when all that they taught would happen, and even questioned the truth behind the prophets’ teachings (21:38).

Themes in Surah of Mary (19)

The doubt by people that Allah could use man as his messenger is manifested in this Surah. When Allah’s messenger told Mary that she was going to have a baby boy, she doubted the message (19:20).

In (19:35) the Qur’an states that people disputed the message given by Jesus, the son of Mary. People could not believe in his teachings since they felt that he was a human being just like them. Besides, he grew up in their midst, and they knew everything about him. The Surah uses admonition and reproach to caution those that fail to heed the word God.

The Qur’an warns people about the day of moaning when Allah will pass his decree. During this day, most of the people will not have taken heed to his message. Allah’s mercy on his people is also portrayed in this Surah. Allah pitied Zachariah and granted him an heir at a time when no one, not even Zachariah, believed that it could happen. God promised to give Zachariah a son called John even though no one else had been named after this name (19:7-8).

Lack of knowledge is one of the reasons why people worship idols, and when one of them acquires the knowledge, he or she stays away from all those that do not believe in Allah. Abraham told his people that the main reason why they worshiped idols was that they did not have the knowledge. He asked them to follow him so that he could show them the right way (19:44). Abraham promised to pray for his people so that they may know Allah and worship him alone.

He parted with them for practicing idolatry (19:49). In (19:86-90), the Qur’an shows the wrath that awaits those who do not believe in God. It states that the devil has been sent to those that despise Allah’s message so that he can lead them to sins. It continues to say that during the judgment day, when the virtuous will be welcomed to the merciful, sinners will be cast to hell, and no one will intercede for them.

Themes in the Surah of the Counsel (42)

This Surah brings out the theme of a merciful Allah. From the Surah, it is evident that in spite of people sinning against Allah, he is a merciful Allah and willing to forgive. The Qur’an states that the angels rejoice the praises of their Lord and beg for forgiveness for all people on earth (42:5). It portrays Allah (“I AM”) as a merciful Allah.

The Qur’an uses admonition and reproach to caution those that goes against Allah’s teachings. It states that, through inspiration, Allah sent the book of Qur’an to people so that it may warn them against the day of reckoning.

It states, “Without doubt, on this day, some people will be in the Garden, while some will be in the blazing fire” (42:7). The Qur’an castigates people for sending contradictory information about Allah and the prophet. It warns people against following the desires for material things. It also warns against envy, which emerges when people learn about the word (42:13-15). The Qur’an claims that Allah has the discretion to use a prophet or speak direct with man whenever he wants to put across a message (42:51).

Wrongdoers are warned against the grievous penalty that awaits them. The Qur’an warns those who have come up with religions against Allah’s will. It states that if it were not for the verdict of judgment, the issue would have been solved instantly. Nevertheless, certainly, sinners will have a severe penalty (42:21). The Qur’an brings out the theme of impatience in mankind. According to the Qur’an, it is hard for man to show patience and to forgive those that sin against him (42:43).

Conclusion

The Qur’an, throughout all its Surahs, brings out numerous themes that admonish and teach people on how to relate with Allah. It teaches about the repercussions of sins and Allah’s mercy to those that repent and live according to his teachings. Besides, it instructs mankind to be patient with matters that relate to Allah.

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IvyPanda. "Five Primary Themes of the Qur'an: Surahs of Mary, the Prophets, and the Counsel." March 7, 2022. https://ivypanda.com/essays/five-major-themes-of-the-quran/.

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IvyPanda. 2022. "Five Primary Themes of the Qur'an: Surahs of Mary, the Prophets, and the Counsel." March 7, 2022. https://ivypanda.com/essays/five-major-themes-of-the-quran/.

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IvyPanda. (2022) 'Five Primary Themes of the Qur'an: Surahs of Mary, the Prophets, and the Counsel'. 7 March.

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