What Surahs and ayat are included in the Twenty-fourth Juz’?
The twenty-fourth juz’ of the Qur’an contains Surah Az-Zumar (The Groups) from ayah 32 till its end, Surah Ghafir or Al-Mu’min (The Forgiver or The Believer) in its entirety and Surah Fussilat (They are Explained in Detail) up to ayah 46.
When were the ayat of this juz’ revealed?
Surah Az-Zumar and Surah Al Ghafir were sent down consecutively in Makkah according to Ibn Abbbas, may Allah be pleased with him. Surah Al Fussilat is reported in hadith to have been revealed after the shahadah of Hamza and before that of Umar, may Allah be pleased with them both, in Makkah.
From the Virtues of Surahs that begin with Ha Mim
Ibn Abbas, may Allah be pleased with him, said, “Everything has an essence and the essence of the Qur’an is the family of Ha Mim,” or he said, “the Ha Mims.” (Ad-Durr Al-Manthur 7:268) Mis’ar bin Kidam said, “They used to be called ‘the brides’.” (Al Qurtubi 15:288) All of this was recorded by the the Imam, great scholar, Abu Ubayd Al-Qasim bin Sallam, may Allah have mercy upon him, in his book Fada’il Al-Qur’an (p137,138).
Humayd bin Zanjuyah narrated that Abdullah, may Allah be pleased with him, said, “The parable of the Qur’an is that of a man who sets out to find a place for his family to stay, and he comes to a place where there is evidence of rainfall. While he is walking about, admiring it, he suddenly comes upon beautiful gardens. He says, ‘I liked the first traces of rainfall, but this is far better.’ It was said to him, ‘The first place is like the Qur’an, and these beautiful gardens are like the splendor of family of Ha Mim in relation to the rest of the Qur’an’.” This was recorded by Al-Baghawi (Al-Baghawi 4:90).
Ibn Mas’ud, may Allah be pleased with him, said, “When I reach the family of Ha Mim, it is like reaching a beautiful garden, so I take my time.” (Al-Baghawi 4:90)
“And verily, if you ask them: “Who created the heavens and the earth?’ Surely they will say: ‘Allah (has created them).’ Say: ‘Tell me then, the things that you invoke besides Allah – if Allah intended some harm for me, could they withhold His Mercy?’ Say: ‘Sufficient for me is Allah; in Him those who trust (i.e. the believers) must put their trust.” (Surah Az-Zummar 39:38)
“Say: ‘O Ibadi (My slaves) who have transgressed against themselves (by committing evil deeds and sins)! Despair not of the Mercy of Allah, verily, Allah forgives all sins. Truly, he is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” (Surah Az-Zummar 39:53)
“And the trumpet will be blown, and all who are in the heavens and all who are on the earth will swoon away, except him whom Allah wills. Then it will be blown a second time, and behold they will be standing, looking on (waiting). And the earth will shine with the light of its Lord, and the Book will be placed (open), and the Prophets and the witnesses will be brought forward, and it will be judged between them with truth, and they will not be wronged. And each person will be paid in full of what he did; and He is Best Aware of what they do.” (Surah Az-Zummar 39:68-70)
“And warn them (O Muhammad) of the Day that is drawing near (i.e. the Day of Resurrection), when the hearts will be choking the throats, and they can neither return them (hearts) to their chests nor can they throw them out. There will be no friend nor intercessor for the Zalimun (polytheists wrongdoers) who could be given heed to.” (Surah Gahfir 40:18)
“Oh my people! Truly, this life of the world is nothing but a (quick passing) enjoyment, and verily, the Hereafter that is the home that will remain forever.” (Surah Gahfir 40:39)
“When the Messengers came to them, from before them and behind them (saying): ‘Worship none but Allah,’ They said: ‘If our Lord had so willed, he would surely have sent down the angels. So, indeed we disbelieve in that with which you have been sent.’” (Surah Fussilat 41:14)
“And who is better in speech than the one who invites (men) to Allah and does righteous deeds and says: “I am one of the Muslims.” (Surah Fussilat 41:32)
What are the main themes of this juz’?
Surah Az-Zumar continues in this juz’ with its warnings to the unbelievers, and those who utter lies against Allah. They deny the Truth and the Oneness of Allah, and theirs will be a terrible end. Those who believe and yet commit sins, should not despair of the Mercy of Allah, and He is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful. To attain His Mercy we need to repent from our sins change and submit ourselves to Him in obedience before the torment comes, for then it will be too late (39:54). Details are given of the Day of Resurrection when the heavens and the earth will be rolled up and the people will be gathered standing, looking on and waiting. Each person will be paid in full for what they did and Allah is All-Aware of what they do. The disbelievers will be driven to Hell in groups, and those who kept their duty to their Lord will be led to Paradise where they will be given the greeting of peace: “Salamun ‘Alaikum! You have done well, so enter here to abide therein forever.” (39:67-75).
Surah Ghafir is the first of seven Surahs to open with the letters ‘Ha Mim‘ which belong to the late Makkan period, when the Muslims were suffering great persecution at the hands of the disbelievers. The general theme of this series is the comparison between belief and disbelief, revelation and rejection, truth and falsehood and good and evil etc, showing the superiority of the former over the later. We are told of the regret of the disbelievers when they are resurrected for judgement, but it will be too late to confess their sins (40:11). They are called on to look at what happened to those that went before them who disbelieved in the Messengers, they were destroyed for their actions, so the disbelievers should purify their belief and worship for the sake of Allah alone. The story of Prophet Musa (Moses), peace be upon him, is returned to and how Fir’aun called him a sorcerer and a liar and plotted to kill him, but Allah is the best of All Planners (40:23-33). Those who deny the Book will suffer a severe punishment, with iron collars round their necks, boiling water to drink and a burning Fire (40:70-72). The believers are enjoined to be patient, because verily the promise of Allah is true.
Surah Fussilat continues with the theme of man’s attitude to Revelation. It gives the glad tidings of Paradise to the believers who do righteous good deeds, but most people turn away and reject the Message. We are told of the people ‘Ad who were arrogant thinking themselves superior. Allah destroyed them with a furious wind (41:15-16) The people of Thamud also received a Messenger whom most of them rejected and they were destroyed by a terrible punishment. The good deed and the bad are not equal, and whoever does wrong wrongs their own selves. The best of speech is that that testifies that Allah is Lord and invites others Islam (41:33).