Surah Luqman is the 31st surah of the Quran that Allah revealed to Prophet Muhammad in the city of Mecca. Luqman is the name of a pious man whom Allah had given him wisdom. The reason this surah is by Luqman’s name is that his name is mentioned in this surah. In this article on Islam4u, the following topics will be discussed:
Facts About Surah Luqman
Benefits of Reciting Surah Luqman
- Being the companion of Luqman on the Day of Judgment: The Noble Prophet has said, “Whoever recites surah Luqman will be the companion and friend of Luqman, and Allah will reward him ten times the number of those who enjoined the good and forbade evil.1
- Thirty angels will protect the one who recites surah Luqman: It has been narrated from Abu Ja‘far Muhammad ibn Ali that whoever recites surah Luqman every night, thirty angels will protect him from the evils of Satan and his troops. Likewise, if it is recited in the morning, they will protect the person until night.2
- A cure for internal diseases: The Prophet has been quoted as saying, “If surah Luqman is written and then washed with water and the water is given to a man or woman who suffers from an internal disease, they will be cured.”3
- Ousting of a tyrant: It is said that whoever writes surah Luqman and puts it in the house of a tyrant, he will be ousted from power in the same year.
The Gist of Surah Luqman
As it was said, the surah gets its name due to the pieces of advice that Luqman gives to his son in this surah. Luqman tells his son not to ascribe partners to Allah. Then Allah enjoins us concerning our parents, saying that they carried us through weakness upon weakness, and our weaning takes two years. Allah then commands us to give thanks to Him and our parents. However, if they tell us to ascribe partners to Allah, then we should not obey them. Then Luqman once again is quoted as saying to his son, “O my dear son! [God is All-Mighty and He knows all things even] if it be the weight of a mustard seed within a rock or in the heaven or on the earth He will bring it out [to judge]. Indeed, He is Subtle, All-Aware.”4
Furthermore, he tells his son to uphold the prayer, enjoin the good and forbid evil, and be patient when any hardship befalls him. Then he tells his son not to be arrogant and not walk boastfully on the earth. Finally, he tells him to be modest in his bearing and lower his voice. Indeed, the voice of those who speak loudly is like the voice of the donkey, which has the ugliest voice among Allah’s creatures. Next, surah Luqman talks about the proofs of faith in the origin of creation and resurrection of human beings. In the end, the surah talks about the exclusive knowledge of Allah such as knowledge of the time of people’s death and the Day of Judgment.
Famous Verses of Surah Luqman
A few of the famous verses of surah Luqman are verses 22, 27, and 34. Verse 22 reads:
وَمَن يُسْلِمْ وَجْهَهُ إِلَى اللَّهِ وَهُوَ مُحْسِنٌ فَقَدِ اسْتَمْسَكَ بِالْعُرْوَةِ الْوُثْقَىٰ ۗ وَإِلَى اللَّهِ عَاقِبَةُ الْأُمُورِ ﴿٢٢﴾
Whoever surrenders his heart to Allah and is virtuous, has certainly held fast to the firmest handle, and with Allah lies the outcome of all matters.5
For one to be delivered from falsehood and annihilation, one must hold fast to the firmest handle. What is the firmest handle? Ali ibn Musa al-Rida narrates from the Noble Prophet who said, “After me, there will be a dark and oppressive sedition. Only the ones who hold fast to the firmest handle will be saved.” His holiness was asked, “What is the firmest handle?” His holiness replied, “The guardianship and wilayah of the Master of Vicegerents.” He was asked, “Who is the Master of Vicegerents?” The Prophet replied, “The Commander of the Faithful.” They asked him, “Who is the Commander of the Faithful.” He said, “The master and leader of Muslims after me.” They asked him to give a clearer answer. He said, “He is my brother Ali ibn Abi Talib.” Other similar narrations say that ‘Urwat al-Wuthqā or the firmest handle is love for the household of the Prophet. Of course, these narrations are not in contradiction with other interpretations of the firmest handle such as tawḥīd and taqwā.
Allah’s Words Never End as Stated in Surah Luqman
وَلَوْ أَنَّمَا فِي الْأَرْضِ مِن شَجَرَةٍ أَقْلَامٌ وَالْبَحْرُ يَمُدُّهُ مِن بَعْدِهِ سَبْعَةُ أَبْحُرٍ مَّا نَفِدَتْ كَلِمَاتُ اللَّهِ ۗ إِنَّ اللَّهَ عَزِيزٌ حَكِيمٌ ﴿٢٧﴾
And if all the trees of earth were [carved into] pens and the sea along with seven more seas [were produced as ink] to help it, the words of God would not come to an end. Indeed, God is Almighty All-Wise.6
This verse speaks about the grandeur and infiniteness of Allah’s words. It states that Allah’s knowledge is endless by drawing a very concrete parable. Because the different creatures of Allah in this world each are a manifestation of Allah’s pure essence, knowledge, and power, every creature can be called a word of Allah. Likewise, “the words of Allah” mean the knowledge of Allah. Therefore, Allah’s knowledge is vast and infinite.
Verse 34 of Surah Luqman
إِنَّ اللَّهَ عِندَهُ عِلْمُ السَّاعَةِ وَيُنَزِّلُ الْغَيْثَ وَيَعْلَمُ مَا فِي الْأَرْحَامِ ۖ وَمَا تَدْرِي نَفْسٌ مَّاذَا تَكْسِبُ غَدًا ۖ وَمَا تَدْرِي نَفْسٌ بِأَيِّ أَرْضٍ تَمُوتُ ۚ إِنَّ اللَّهَ عَلِيمٌ خَبِيرٌ ﴿٣٤﴾
Indeed the knowledge of the Hour is with Allah. He sends down the rain, and He knows what is in the wombs. No soul knows what it will earn tomorrow, and no soul knows in what land it will die. Indeed Allah is all-knowing, all-aware.
In the last verse of surah Luqman, Allah is answering all those polytheists who kept asking the Prophet when the Day of Judgment would come. This verse asserts that only Allah has knowledge of the arrival of the Day of Judgment. He has knowledge of the Unseen. He knows what is in the wombs. Then the verse states that no one knows what he will earn tomorrow and in what land he will die. However, Allah has knowledge of everything including what people earn tomorrow and in what land they will die. Therefore, verse 34 of surah Luqman beautifully describes Allah’s vast knowledge over everything.
Surah Luqman is one of the most beautiful surahs of the Quran that contains many lessons for us to learn. The pieces of advice of Luqman to his son are especially very instructive for us. One of the most important things that Luqman advises his son to avoid is ascribing partners to Allah. Luqman names polytheism as a great injustice. Surah Luqman also speaks of the firmest handle that whoever holds fast to it will be delivered. If someone wants to hold fast to this handle, he must surrender his heart to Allah and be virtuous as the verse clearly states. In the end, surah Luqman speaks about Allah’s knowledge of the hidden and unseen. Allah has knowledge of the Day of Judgment, knows when and where someone will die, and knows what they will earn the next day. Prophet Muhammad has said that whoever recites surah Luqman will become the companion of Luqman, and will receive ten times the reward of all those who enjoined the good and forbade evil.
- Majma‘ al-Bayān, vol. 8, p. 74.
- Thawāb al-A‘māl, p. 110
- Tafseer al-Burhān, vol. 4, p. 359.
- Quran 31:16 (Foroutan).
- Quran 31:22 (Qara’i).
- Quran 31:27 (Foroutan).
- Quran 31:34 (Qara’i).