Page:Sacred Books of the East - Volume 9.djvu/231

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ⅩⅬⅢ, 49-61.
the chapter of gilding.

And when we removed from them the torment, behold they broke their word.

50 And Pharaoh proclaimed amongst his people ; said he, ‘ O my people ! is not the kingdom of Egypt mine ? and these rivers that flow beneath me ? What ! can ye then not see ? Am I better than this fellow, who is contemptible, who can hardly explain himself[1]? Unless then bracelets of gold be cast upon him, or there come with him angels as his mates…!’

And he taught his people levity; and they obeyed him : verily, they were an abominable people.

55 And when they had annoyed us we took vengeance on them, and we drowned them all together, and we made them a precedent and an example to those after them.

And when the son of Mary was set forth as a parable, behold thy people turned away from him and said, ‘ Are our gods better, or is he ?’ They did not set it forth to thee save for wrangling. Nay, but they are a contentious people[2].

He is but a servant whom we have been gracious to, and we have made him an example for the children of Israel. 60 And if we please we can make of you angels in the earth to succeed you[3]. And, verily, he is a sign of the Hour[4]. Doubt not then

  1. See p. 36, note 1.
  2. The Arabs objected that Jesus was worshipped by Christians as a God, and that when Mohammed cursed their false gods, the ban must apply equally to him.
  3. Just as Jesus was miraculously conceived, so can miraculously conceived offspring be produced among the Meccans themselves.
  4. Some read, ‘ a sign,’ which is perhaps better. The reference is to the predicted second advent of the Messiah, which is to precede