Ayah

Word by Word
يُخَٰدِعُونَ
They seek to deceive
ٱللَّهَ
Allah
وَٱلَّذِينَ
and those who
ءَامَنُواْ
believe[d]
وَمَا
and not
يَخۡدَعُونَ
they deceive
إِلَّآ
except
أَنفُسَهُمۡ
themselves
وَمَا
and not
يَشۡعُرُونَ
they realize (it)
يُخَٰدِعُونَ
They seek to deceive
ٱللَّهَ
Allah
وَٱلَّذِينَ
and those who
ءَامَنُواْ
believe[d]
وَمَا
and not
يَخۡدَعُونَ
they deceive
إِلَّآ
except
أَنفُسَهُمۡ
themselves
وَمَا
and not
يَشۡعُرُونَ
they realize (it)

Translation

Fain would they deceive Allah and those who believe, but they only deceive themselves, and realise (it) not!

Tafsir

They would deceive God and the believers, by manifesting the opposite of the unbelief they hide, so that they can avoid His rulings in this world; and only themselves they deceive (yukhaadi'oon), for the evil consequences of their deception will rebound upon them, as they are disgraced in this world when God makes known to His Prophet what they are hiding, and they will be punished in the Hereafter; and they are not aware, and they do not know that they are actually deceiving themselves (mukhaada'a [although a third verbal form, from khaada'a] actually denotes a one-way action, such as [when one says] 'aaqabtu al-lissa, 'I punished the thief' [using the third verbal form 'aaqaba]; the mention of 'God' in [this statement] is for [rhetorical] effect; a variant reading [for wa-maa yukhaadi'oona] has wa-maa yakhda'oo_____na).

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