Ayah

Word by Word
مَا
Not
كَانَ
is
لِبَشَرٍ
for a human
أَن
that
يُؤۡتِيَهُ
gives him
ٱللَّهُ
Allah
ٱلۡكِتَٰبَ
the Book
وَٱلۡحُكۡمَ
and the wisdom
وَٱلنُّبُوَّةَ
and the Prophethood
ثُمَّ
then
يَقُولَ
he says
لِلنَّاسِ
to the people
كُونُواْ
Be
عِبَادٗا
worshippers
لِّي
of me
مِن
from
دُونِ
besides
ٱللَّهِ
Allah
وَلَٰكِن
but (would say)
كُونُواْ
Be
رَبَّـٰنِيِّـۧنَ
worshippers of the Lord
بِمَا
because
كُنتُمۡ
you have been
تُعَلِّمُونَ
teaching
ٱلۡكِتَٰبَ
the Book
وَبِمَا
and because
كُنتُمۡ
you have been
تَدۡرُسُونَ
studying (it)
مَا
Not
كَانَ
is
لِبَشَرٍ
for a human
أَن
that
يُؤۡتِيَهُ
gives him
ٱللَّهُ
Allah
ٱلۡكِتَٰبَ
the Book
وَٱلۡحُكۡمَ
and the wisdom
وَٱلنُّبُوَّةَ
and the Prophethood
ثُمَّ
then
يَقُولَ
he says
لِلنَّاسِ
to the people
كُونُواْ
Be
عِبَادٗا
worshippers
لِّي
of me
مِن
from
دُونِ
besides
ٱللَّهِ
Allah
وَلَٰكِن
but (would say)
كُونُواْ
Be
رَبَّـٰنِيِّـۧنَ
worshippers of the Lord
بِمَا
because
كُنتُمۡ
you have been
تُعَلِّمُونَ
teaching
ٱلۡكِتَٰبَ
the Book
وَبِمَا
and because
كُنتُمۡ
you have been
تَدۡرُسُونَ
studying (it)

Translation

It is not (possible) that a man, to whom is given the Book, and Wisdom, and the prophetic office, should say to people: "Be ye my worshippers rather than Allah's": on the contrary (He would say) "Be ye worshippers of Him Who is truly the Cherisher of all: For ye have taught the Book and ye have studied it earnestly."

Tafsir

When the Christians of Najraan claimed that Jesus had commanded them to take him as a Divinity, and some Muslims asked that they should be permitted to prostrate themselves before him, the Prophet may peace and salutation be upon him, the following was revealed: It belongs not to any mortal that God should give him the Book, the Judgement, the understanding of the Divine Law, prophethood, then that he should say to men, 'Be servants to me instead of God.' Rather, he should say, 'Be masters, scholars, labouring (rabbaaniyyoon, 'those of the Lord', is derived from rabb, 'lord', with the extra alif and noon, as a superlative [of rabbiyyoon]), by virtue of what you know (ta'lamoon, also read as tu'allimoon, 'you teach') of the Book and in what you study', that is, on account of the fact that you used to do this, for its benefit is that you engage in action.

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