Sūrat Āl-i ‘Imrān

Sūrah No. 3. Revealed in Madīnah, 200 verses.

This Sūrah was revealed during the occasions of the battles of Badr and Uhud and covers some of the most tumultuous times of the early Muslims.

Merits of reciting the Sūrah

Imam al-Sādiq (a) has said; Whoever recites Sūrah al-Baqarah and Sūrah Aale Imran will come on the Day of Judgment with their shade over him like two clouds.

Note: This shade and protection will be for those who follow the teachings of the Sūrahs.

General synopsis of contents

1) Revelation of guidance (vv. 1-9)

2) Attitude of believers and disbelievers (vv. 10-32)

3) The story of Lady Maryam (a) and Prophet Isa (a) (vv. 33-60)

4) The people of the Book (vv. 61-80)

5) The disbelievers and rejecters of faith (vv. 82-95)

6) Pilgrimage to the Ka’aba (vv. 96-97)

7) People of the Book (vv. 98-100)

8) The signs of Allah (vv. 101-109)

9) Various groups of people (vv. 110-116)

10) Stance against disbelievers (vv. 117-121)

11) About the battle of Uhud (vv. 122-129)

12) Rules and advice for believers (vv. 130-145)

13) Strategies and attitude in battle (vv. 146-179)

14) Being miserly in giving charity (vv. 180-182)

15) Those who reject the Prophets (vv. 183-189)

16) Prayers of the people of understanding (vv. 190-195)

17) Reward for those who are firm in faith (vv. 196-200)

Suggested verses for reflection and memorization.

1) 3:29 – Say, ‘Whether you hide what is in your hearts or disclose it, Allah knows it

2) 3:30 – The day when every soul will find present whatever good it has done; and as for the evil, it has done, it will wish there were a far distance between it and itself.

3) 3:31 – Say, ‘If you love Allah, then follow me; Allah will love you and forgive you your sins, and Allah is all-forgiving, all-merciful.’

4) 3:92 – You will never attain piety until you spend out of what you hold dear.

5) 3:103 – Hold fast, all together, to Allah’s cord, and do not be divided

6) 3:104 – There has to be a nation among you summoning to the good, bidding what is right, and forbidding what is wrong. It is they who are the victorious.

7) 3:139 – Do not weaken or grieve: you shall have the upper hand, should you be faithful.

8) 3:147 – Our Lord, forgive us our sins and our excesses in our affairs, make our feet steady, and help us against the faithless lot.

9) 3:173 – Those to whom the people said, ‘All the people have gathered against you, so fear them.’ That only increased them in faith, and they said, ‘Allah is sufficient for us, and He is an excellent trustee.

Activities for self-study

1) There are many supplications in this Sūrah which can be recited in Qunūt. Check

verses 8,9,16, and 53.

2) Many incidents from the lives of Lady Maryam and Prophet Isa are mentioned in

this Sūrah. Write out the account for the following incidents.

  1. a) Birth of Lady Maryam (vv. 35-37)
  2. b) Conversations of the angels with Lady Maryam (vv. 42-47)
  3. c) Prophet Isa and his disciples (vv. 52-55)

3) For a discussion on some of the verses of this Sūrah check


4) Study the following verses:

  1. a) Verses 133-136. How many qualities have been described for these believers?
  2. b) Verse 159. How does this verse describe the Prophet a?
  3. c) Verses 169-171. Note the points about those who are martyred in the way of Allah.
  4. d) Verses 190-195 – What are the prayers of those who possess understanding? This

is an important passage to memorize and recite often.