Page:Sacred Books of the East - Volume 6.djvu/99

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in the zodiac, guarded as they are from the devils who are pelted with shooting-stars if they attempt to listen. All nature is under God’s control. Man created from clay, and the ginn from smokeless fire. The angels bidden to adore Adam. Iblîs refuses; is cursed and expelled; but respited until the day of judgment. Is allowed to seduce mankind. Hell, with its seven doors, promised to misbelievers, and Paradise to believers. Story of Abraham’s angelic guests: they announce to him the birth of a son: they proceed to Lot’s family. The crime and punishment of the people of Sodom. The ruined cities still remain to tell the tale. Similar fate of the people of the Grove and of El ʿHagr. The Hour draws nigh. The Lord the Omniscient Creator has sent the Qurʼân and the 'seven verses of repetition' (the Opening Chapter). Mohammed is not to grieve at the worldly success of unbelievers. Those who 'dismember the Qurʼân[1]' are threatened with punishment. Mohammed is encouraged against the misbelievers.

ⅩⅥ. The Chapter of the Bee. (Mecca.)

God’s decree will come to pass. He sends the angels to instruct his servants to give warning that there is no other God. The creation and ordering of all natural objects are signs of His power. The false gods are inanimate and powerless. God is but one. The unbelievers who call the revelation old folks’ tales must bear the burden of their own sins. On the resurrection day their 'associates' will disown them. Reception by the angels of the wicked and the good in Hell and in Paradise. The infidels strenuously deny the resurrection. The Muhâgerîn are promised a good reward. The Jews and Christians to be asked to confirm the Qurʼân. All nature adores God. Unity of God affirmed. When in distress men turn to God, but forget Him and become idolaters when deliverance comes. The practice of setting aside part of their produce for the idols reproved. The practice of female infanticide, while they ascribe daughters to God, is reproved, and disbelief in the future life also rebuked. Satan is the patron of the infidels. The Qurʼân sent down as a guidance and mercy. The rain which quickens the dead earth, and the cattle which give milk, and the vines which give fruit and wine are signs. The bee is inspired from the Lord to build hives and to use those made first by men. Its honey is lawful. The rich Arabs are reproved for

  1. Here used for the Scriptures generally.