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Below is my translation of Qur’an 2:30-38. It is not identical to the rendering of the same passage in M. A. S. Abdel Haleem’s 2005 translation of The Qur’an for the Oxford World’s Classics series, but I freely acknowledge that it’s very similar. That’s not coincidental. I like Abdel Haleem’s translation; it’s the one that I’ve used for roughly five years now in my classes on the Qur’an in English translation. I used it as the basis for my own version, below, but modified it as various points (as will be readily apparent to anybody who compares them).
- When your Lord told the angels, “I am putting a deputy on the earth,” they said, “Will you put someone there who will cause damage and bloodshed, while we celebrate Your praise and proclaim Your holiness?” But He said, “I know things you do not know.”
- He taught Adam all the names. Then He showed them to the angels and said, “Tell me the names of these if you truly [think you can].”
- They said, “May You be glorified! We only have knowledge of what You have taught us. You are the All Knowing and All Wise.”
- Then He said, “Adam, tell them their names.” And when he told them their names, [God] said, “Did I not tell you that I know what is hidden in the heavens and the earth, and that I know what you reveal and what you conceal?”
- When We told the angels, “Bow down before Adam,” they all bowed down. Except Iblis, who refused and was arrogant: he was among the disobedient.
- We said, “Adam, live with your wife in this garden. Both of you eat freely there, wherever you wish. But do not approach this tree, lest you both become wrongdoers.”
- But Satan caused them to fall and drove them out of the state that they had been in. We said, “Get out [all of you]! You shall be at enmity with each other. On earth you shall have a place to stay, and livelihood—for a while.”
- Then Adam received some words from his Lord and He accepted his repentance. (He is the Ever Relenting, the Most Merciful.)
- We said, ‘Go down from [the Garden], all of you! But when guidance comes from Me, as it certainly will, there will be no fear for those who follow My guidance, nor will they grieve.