Monday, February 26, 2024 | Sha'ban 15, 1445 H
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EDITOR IN CHIEF- ABDULLAH BIN SALIM AL SHUEILI

Qarun

Stories from the Quran
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Allah the Almighty says :{Indeed, Qarun was from the people of Moses, but he tyrannised them. And We gave him of treasures whose keys would burden a band of strong men; thereupon his people said to him, “Do not exult. Indeed, Allah does not like the exultant. But seek, through that which Allah has given you, the home of the Hereafter; and [yet], do not forget your share of the world. And do good as Allah has done good to you. And desire not corruption in the land. Indeed, Allah does not like corrupters.” He said, “I was only given it because of knowledge I have.”


Did he not know that Allah had destroyed before him of generations those who were greater than him in power and greater in accumulation [of wealth]? But the criminals, about their sins, will not be asked. So he came out before his people in his adornment. Those who desired the worldly life said, “Oh, would that we had like what was given to Qarun. Indeed, he is one of great fortune.” But those who had been given knowledge said, “Woe to you! The reward of Allah is better for he who believes and does righteousness. And none are granted it except the patient.” And We caused the earth to swallow him and his home. And there was for him no company to aid him other than Allah, nor was he of those who [could] defend themselves. And those who had wished for his position the previous day began to say, “Oh, how Allah extends provision to whom He wills of His servants and restricts it! If not that Allah had conferred favour on us, He would have caused it to swallow us. Oh, how the disbelievers do not succeed!”} 76-82 Surah Al-Qasas


Qarun was one of the people in Bani Israel, and according to some reports, was related to Musa. He believed in Musa and had knowledge of the Torah.


Allah describes the amount of his wealth – one man could not carry just the keys to his treasures. As already described, Qarun’s wealth was stupefying. However, he was arrogant and stingy, and tyrannical to his own people. He was haughty and selfish, walking in a boastful manner on Allah’s earth, with his grand clothes dragging on the ground.


As his treasures multiplied, so did his hypocrisy and he transgressed many boundaries with Allah. Even though his riches exceeded what anyone could spend over several generations, he was stingy. He was unwilling to spend any of it for the greater good of society, to alleviate the suffering of the needy. He lived without any sense of accountability or responsibility to society and was arrogant to Allah.


People in Bani Israel constantly reminded him not to be arrogant with his wealth or be ungrateful to Allah. They also advised him to “seek, through that which Allah has given you, the home of the Hereafter...” (Al Qur’an 28:77) Qarun lost sight of the fact that but for the will of Allah; he would not have been in possession of such an immense fortune.


Society was divided into those who envied Qarun: when they saw him parading about in his finery, they were jealous and wished for what he had. Others despised his attitude and constantly tried to counsel him, but without avail. One day, Qarun set out with his caravan.


Those who saw him and desired the worldly life said: “Oh, would that we had like what was given to Qarun. Indeed, he is one of great fortune.” (Al Qur’an 28:79) However, those who had been given knowledge expressed their disapproval and said, “Woe to you! The reward of Allah is better for he who believes and does righteousness. And none are granted it except the patient.” (Al Qur’an 28:80) The believers warned those envious of Qarun to keep their eye on the rewards of Allah, which is earned by righteous deeds, rather than to yearn the temporary riches of this world. Qarun and all his fortunes were swallowed by the earth, never to be seen again. The ones who, the previous day had wished to be in his position realised the error of their desires.


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