Page:Koran - Rodwell - 2nd ed.djvu/264

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248
The Koran

came and said, Shall I point out to you the family of a house that will rear him for you, and will be careful of him?

So we restored him to his mother, to be the joy of her eyes, and that she might not fret, and that she might know that the promise of God was true. But most men knew it not.

And when he had reached his age of strength, and had become a man, we bestowed on him wisdom and knowledge; for thus do we reward the righteous.

And he entered a city at the time when its inhabitants would not observe him,[1] and found therein two men fighting: the one, of his own people; the other, of his enemies. And he who was of his own people asked his help against him who was of his enemies. And Moses smote him with his fist and slew him. Said he, “This is a work of Satan; for he is an enemy, a manifest misleader.”

He said, “my Lord, I have sinned to mine own hurt:[2] forgive me.” So God forgave him; for He is the Forgiving, the Merciful.

He said, “Lord, because thou hast showed me this grace, I will never again be the helper of the wicked.”

And in the city at noon he was full of fear, casting furtive glances round him: and lo ! the man whom he had helped the day before, cried out to him again for help. Said Moses to him, “Thou art plainly a most depraved person.”

And when he would have laid violent hands on him who was their common foe, he said to him, “Moses, dost thou desire to slay me, as thou slayedst a man yesterday? Thou desirest only to become a tyrant in this land, and desirest not to become a peacemaker.”

But a man came running up from the city's end. He said, “O Moses, of a truth, the nobles consult to slay thee—Begone then—I counsel thee as a friend.”

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So forth he went from it in fear, looking warily about him. He said, “Lord, deliver me from the unjust people.”

And when he was journeying toward Madian, he said, “Haply my Lord will direct me in an even path.”

And when he arrived at the water of Madian, he found at it a company of men watering.

And he found beside them, two women[3] keeping back their

  1. Lit. in the time of neglect on the part of its people, i.e. at the hour of the noon sleep.
  2. Lit. I have acted unjustly to my soul.
  3. Comp. Ex. ii. 16. 17, where the daughters are said to be seven.