Page:Sacred Books of the East - Volume 9.djvu/119

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ⅩⅩⅦ, 40-48.
the chapter of the ant.

turn.’ And when he saw it settled down beside him, he said, ‘ This is of my Lord’s grace, that He may try me whether I am grateful or ungrateful, and he who is grateful is only grateful for his own soul, and he who is ungrateful, — verily, my Lord is rich and generous.’

Said he, ‘ Disguise for her her throne ; let us see whether she is guided, or whether she is of those who are not guided.’ And when she came it was said, ‘ Was thy throne like this ?’ She said, ‘ It might be it ;’ and we were given knowledge before her, but we were resigned[1].

But that which she served beside God turned her away ; verily, she was of the unbelieving people. And it was said to her, ‘ Enter the court ;’ and when she saw it, she reckoned it to be an abyss of water, and she uncovered her legs. Said he, ‘ Verily, it is a court paved with glass!’ 45 Said she, ‘ My Lord ! verily, I have wronged myself, but I am resigned with Solomon to God the Lord of the worlds !’

And we sent unto Thamûd their brother Zâliʿh, ‘ Serve God;’ but behold, they were two parties who contended !

Said he, ‘ O my people ! why do ye hasten on evil acts before good deeds ? why do ye not ask forgiveness of God ? haply ye may obtain mercy.’ They said, ‘ We have taken an augury concerning thee and those who are with thee.’ Said he, ‘ Your augury is in God’s hands ; nay, but ye are a people who are tried !’

  1. Commentators differ as to whether the last words are to be taken as the conclusion of the Queen of Sheba’s speech, or as Solomon’s comment upon it.