What is a “juz’” of the Qu’ran?:
The main division of the Qur’an is into chapter (surah) and verse (ayat). The Qur’an is additionally divided into 30 equal sections, called juz’ (plural: ajiza). The divisions of juz’ do not fall evenly along chapter lines. These divisions make it easier to pace the reading over a month’s period, reading a fairly equal amount each day. This is particularly important during the month of Ramadan, when it is recommended to complete at least one full reading of the Qur’an from cover to cover.
What chapter(s) and verses are included in Juz’ 7?:
The seventh juz’ of the Qur’an contains parts of two chapters of the Quran: the last part of Surah Al-Ma'idah (from verse 82) and the first part of Surah Al-An'am (to verse 110).
When were the verses of this juz’ revealed?:
As with the previous juz', the verses of Surah Al-Ma'idah were largely revealed in the early years after the Muslims migrated to Madinah, when the Prophet Muhammad strived to create unity and peace among a diverse collection of Muslim, Jewish, and Christian city-dwellers and nomadic tribes of various ethnicities.
The latter part of this juz', in Surah Al-An'am, were actually revealed in Makkah prior to the migration to Madinah. Although these verses pre-date the ones before it, the logical argument flows. After discussion of earlier revelations and relationships with People of the Book, the arguments now turn to paganism, and the pagans' rejection of the Unity of Allah.
- "Oh you who believe! Do not make unlawful the good things which Allah has made lawful for you. But commit no excess, for Allah loves not those given to excess." 5:87
- "Say: 'Shall I take for my protector any other than Allah, the Maker of the heavens and the earth? He it is that feeds but is not fed.' Say: 'No! I am commanded to be the first of those who bow down to Allah in Islam. Do not join the company of those who join gods with Allah." 6:14
- "We send the Messengers only to give good news and to warn. So those who believe and mend their ways, upon them shall be no fear, nor shall they grieve. But those who reject Our signs, them the punishment will touch, because they did not cease from transgressing." 6:48-49
- "That is Allah, your Lord! There is no god but He, the Creator of all things. Then worship Him. And He has power to dispose of all affairs. No vision can grasp Him, but His grasp is over all vision. He is Subtle, Well-Aware." 6:102-103
What is the main theme of this juz’?:
The continuation of Surah Al-Ma'ida follows in the same vein as the first part of the surah, detailing issues of dietary law, marriage, and criminal punishments. Further, Muslims are advised to avoid breaking oaths, intoxicants, gambling, sorcery, superstitions, breaking oaths, and hunting in the Sacred Precincts (Makkah) or during pilgrimage. Muslims should write their wills, witnessed by honest people. Believers should also avoid going to excess, making lawful things out to be unlawful. Believers are instructed to obey Allah, and obey the Messenger of Allah.
The beginning of Sura Al-An'am picks up the topic of Allah's creation, and the many signs which are present for those who are open-minded to the evidence of Allah's handiwork. Many previous generations rejected the truth brought by their prophets, despite the evidence of truth in Allah's creation. Abraham was a prophet who tried to teach those who worshipped false gods. A series of prophets after Abraham continued to teach this truth. Those who reject faith wrong their own souls, and will be punished for their blasphemy. Unbelievers say that the believers listen to "nothing but tales of the ancients" (6:25). They ask for proofs and continue to reject that there is even a Judgment Day. When the Hour is upon them, they will call out for a second chance, but it will not be granted.
Abraham and the other prophets gave "reminders to the nations," calling upon people to have faith and leave false idols. Over eighteen prophets are listed by name in verses 6:83-87. Some chose to believe, and others rejected. The Quran was revealed to bring blessings and to "confirm the revelations that came before it" (6:92). The false gods that pagans worship will be of no use to them in the end. The juz' continues with reminders of Allah's bounty in nature: the sun, moon, stars, rain, vegetation, fruits, etc. Even animals (6:38) and plants (6:59) follow the laws of nature that Allah has written for them, so who are we to be arrogant and reject faith in Allah?
As hard as it is, believers are asked to bear the rejection of unbelievers with patience and not take it personally (6:33-34). Muslims are advised not to sit with those who ridicule and question faith, but just to turn away and give advice. In the end, each person is responsible for his or her own conduct, and they will face Allah for judgment. It is not for us to "watch over their doings," nor are we "set over them to dispose of their affairs" (6:107). In fact, Muslims are advised not to ridicule or hate the false gods of other faiths, "lest they out of spite, revile Allah in their ignorance" (6:108). Rather, believers should leave them be, and trust that Allah will ensure fair judgment for all.