sent upon them a plague from heaven for that they were unjust.
Ask them too about the city which stood by the sea, when they transgressed upon the Sabbath ; when their fish came to them on the Sabbath day sailing straight up to them ; but on the days when they kept not the Sabbath, they came not to them, thus did we try them for the abominations that they wrought.
And when a nation from amongst them said, ‘Why do ye warn a people whom God would destroy, or punish with severe torment?’ they said, ‘ As an excuse to your Lord, that haply they may fear.’ 165 But when they forgot what they had been reminded of, we saved those who forbade evil, but we overtook those who did wrong with punishment ; — evil was the abomination that they did, but when they rebelled against what they were forbidden, we said to them, ‘ Become ye apes, despised and spurned!’ and then thy Lord proclaimed that He would surely send against them till the resurrection day, those who should wreak them evil torment; verily, thy Lord is quick at following up, but, verily, He is forgiving, merciful.
We cut them up in the earth into nations. Of them are the righteous, and of them are the reverse of that ; we have tried them with good things and with bad things ; haply they may return.
But there succeeded them successors who inherited the Book! They take the goods of this lower world and say, ‘ It will be forgiven us.’ But if the like goods came to them they would take them too ! Was there not taken from them a covenant by
- Cf. Chapter II, 61.