Let’s Explore Hazrat Adam’s Journey: Verse 30-33 with Syeda Naqvi

Let’s Explore Hazrat Adam’s Journey: Verse 30-33 with Syeda Naqvi

The Cow
PositionJuzʼ 1–3
No. of Rukus40
No. of verses286
No. of words6121
No. of letters25613
Opening muqaṭṭaʻātAlif Lam Meem

بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمنِ الرَّحِيمِ

وَإِذْ قَالَ رَبُّكَ لِلْمَلَائِكَةِ إِنِّي جَاعِلٌ فِي الْأَرْضِ خَلِيفَةً ۖ قَالُوا أَتَجْعَلُ فِيهَا مَنْ يُفْسِدُ فِيهَا وَيَسْفِكُ الدِّمَاءَ وَنَحْنُ نُسَبِّحُ بِحَمْدِكَ وَنُقَدِّسُ لَكَ ۖ قَالَ إِنِّي أَعْلَمُ مَا لَا تَعْلَمُونَ

وَعَلَّمَ آدَمَ الْأَسْمَاءَ كُلَّهَا ثُمَّ عَرَضَهُمْ عَلَى الْمَلَائِكَةِ فَقَالَ أَنْبِئُونِي بِأَسْمَاءِ هَٰؤُلَاءِ إِنْ كُنْتُمْ صَادِقِينَ

قَالُوا سُبْحَانَكَ لَا عِلْمَ لَنَا إِلَّا مَا عَلَّمْتَنَا ۖ إِنَّكَ أَنْتَ الْعَلِيمُ الْحَكِيمُ

قَالَ يَا آدَمُ أَنْبِئْهُمْ بِأَسْمَائِهِمْ ۖ فَلَمَّا أَنْبَأَهُمْ بِأَسْمَائِهِمْ قَالَ أَلَمْ أَقُلْ لَكُمْ إِنِّي أَعْلَمُ غَيْبَ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضِ وَأَعْلَمُ مَا تُبْدُونَ وَمَا كُنْتُمْ تَكْتُمُونَ

  1. “When your Lord said to the angels: ‘I am appointing on the earth a deputy’, they said: ‘Will you place therein one who will make mischief therein and shed blood, -while we celebrate Your Praise and extol Your Holiness?’ He said: surely I know what you know not.”
  2. “And He taught Adam all the names, then He presented them before the angels, and said: ‘Tell Me the names of these if you are right’.”
  3. ” They said: ‘Glory be to You! of knowledge we have no save what you have taught us. Surely, you (alone) are the All-Knowing, the All-Wise’.”
  4. ” He said: ‘O’ Adam, tell them their names’. And when he had told them their names, He said: ‘Did I not say unto you that I surely know the unseen things of the heavens and the earth, and (that) I know what you reveal and what you were hiding?”

Man, Allah’s Deputy on Earth!

The verses provided from the Qur’an highlight the spiritual rank and leadership role that Allah has assigned to Man. These verses not only illustrate the endowments created for Man but also formally proclaim his vicegerency on Earth, showcasing his spiritual worthiness.

Verses 30-39: The Creation of Adam

These verses discuss three key aspects of Adam’s creation:

  1. Allah’s Announcement to the Angels: Allah informs the angels about the appointment of a human deputy on Earth. The angels, questioning this decision, express their concern about potential mischief and bloodshed by humans, juxtaposed with their continuous praise and worship of Allah.
  2. Command to Prostrate: Allah commands the angels to prostrate before Adam. This directive is mentioned in several verses of the Qur’an, highlighting the significance of Adam’s creation.
  3. Adam’s Life in Heaven: These verses also detail Adam’s existence in Heaven, his subsequent fall, repentance, and the command for him and his descendants to live on Earth.

Man’s Role as Vicegerent

It was Allah’s Will to create a being on Earth that would serve as His vicegerent, embodying divine attributes and possessing a higher status than the angels. This deputy would have dominion over Earth and its resources, requiring immense wisdom, intelligence, and capacity to lead.

Verse 30: Allah’s Declaration

“When your Lord said to the angels: ‘I am appointing on the earth a deputy’…” Leading Islamic scholars interpret ‘Khalifah’ (deputy) as the divine vicegerent on Earth, supported by the angels’ subsequent questioning and the teaching of names to Adam.

The Angels’ Question

The angels, upon learning of Allah’s plan, questioned the wisdom behind appointing a being capable of causing mischief and bloodshed. They contrasted this with their continuous praise and sanctification of Allah.

Allah’s Response

“…He said: ‘Assuredly I know what you know not’.”

Allah’s response indicated that there were aspects of Man’s potential and capacity that the angels were unaware of. While the angels emphasized their own purity and constant worship, they did not understand the unique challenges and opportunities for worship that Man, with his free will and susceptibility to temptation, would face.

Teaching Adam the Names

Allah taught Adam the names of all things, signifying a deep understanding of the nature and properties of creation. This knowledge was not just of words but of the very essence and attributes of things, which Adam could utilize for the benefit and development of humanity.

The Trial of the Angels

Allah presented the objects to the angels and challenged them to name them, which they could not do. Their response highlighted their limited knowledge:

“They said: ‘Glory be to You! Of knowledge, we have no save what You have taught us. Surely, You (alone) are the All-Knowing, the All-Wise’.”

Adam Demonstrates His Knowledge

“He said: ‘O Adam, tell them their names’… And when he had told them their names, He said: ‘Did I not say unto you that I surely know the unseen things of the heavens and the earth, and (that) I know what you reveal and what you were hiding?'”

Adam demonstrated his God-given knowledge, affirming his status as Allah’s chosen vicegerent. This exercise clarified to the angels the unique capabilities and worthiness of Adam.

Understanding the Angels’ Reaction

The angels initially doubted the suitability of Man for the role of vicegerent, believing their continuous worship made them more suitable. However, they failed to consider the significance of prayer and obedience amidst temptations and challenges, something Man would face.


The narrative underscores the profound wisdom in Allah’s decision to appoint Man as His deputy on Earth. The unique potential for knowledge, understanding, and the ability to navigate moral complexities set Man apart, enabling him to fulfill this divine role. Through Adam, it becomes evident that humanity has a significant and honored place in creation, destined to carry out Allah’s will on Earth.


  1.  Salwa M. S. El-Awa, Introduction to Textual Relations in Qur’an, pg. 1. Part of the Routledge Studies in the Qur’an series. LondonRoutledge, 2005. ISBN 9781134227471
  2.  Quran 2:1
  3.  Sale, George (1891). The Koran: Commonly Called the Alkoran of Mohammed ... New York: John B. Alden.
  4.  Michael Binyon, Fighting is ‘allowed’ during the holy month of fasting The Times, 18 December 1998
  5.  Jump up to:a b Sadr-‘ameli Sayyid Abbas. “Surah Al-Baqarah, Chapter 2, Introduction”. Al-islam. Retrieved 14 May 2015.
  6.  Mahmoud Ayoub, The Qurʾan and its interpreters, pg. 55. AlbanyState University of New York Press, 1984. ISBN 9780791495469
  7.  Maariful Quran

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