Sura 31 -- Luqman
This sura begins with reminders of the good things in store for the obedient believers and the "shameful punishment" for those who hear the revelations yet turn from them with pride (vs. 7). We are introduced to a man named Luqman who is giving counsel to his son about following God and doing His orders.
As you can read for yourself on this interesting post, Arabs of Muhammad's day already knew about these so-called "scientific miracles" of the Quran. They never claimed them as proofs of divine revelation because the miracle of the Quran was, well, the Quran. And its poetic beauty. So it was more of an aesthetic miracle than a scientific one.
I could see that from this verse. It's like a given that the people could either see or already realized these things from past scientific knowledge.
10. He created the skies without a support, as you can see, and placed stabilisers in the earth that you may dwell at ease as it revolves; and dispersed on it all varieties of creatures, and He sent down water from the skies and grew all kinds of splendid things upon it.
The challenge isn't to our minds that these stabilisers might just be a miracle that will be proven hundreds of years from now. Hindus believed the earth was stabilized by pegs years before Islam came on the scene. Instead the quranic challenge is for everyone to see what God has created and copy it! No one can create out of nothing like God.
11. Such is God's creation. Show me now what those (they worship) beside Him have created. Surely the evil-doers are in clear error.
26. To God belongs what is in the heavens and the earth. Verily He is all-sufficient, worthy of praise.
I think this verse is pretty!
27. If all the trees of the earth were pens and the oceans ink, with many more oceans for replenishing them, the colloquy of God would never come to end. He is indeed all-mighty and all-wise.
This verse about the "colloquy of God" never ending - which I'm sure is some of that famous Middle Eastern exaggeration to make a point - reminded me of another example of it from John 21.
25Jesus did many other things as well. If every one of them were written down, I suppose that even the whole world would not have room for the books that would be written.
Have you ever heard people joke about "hope things are back to normal soon...whatever that is"? The "joke" is that "normal" is rather subjective. I think that's why I liked this verse.
30. That is so for God is the Reality, and what they invoke other than Him is illusion. Indeed God is all-high and supreme.
While it doesn't speak of "normal," it speaks of God as "the Reality." I like to think of God setting the standard of what is Real, Right, Truth... we could call it True Normal maybe.
34. Only God has the knowledge of the Hour. He sends rain from the heavens, and knows what is in the mothers' wombs. No one knows what he will do on the morrow; no one knows in what land he will die. Surely God knows and is cognisant.
This verse took my attention. I totally agree that God is all-knowing. The part that gave me pause was about no one knowing in which land he will die. This made me reflect on those who perhaps have died while fighting for their countries or their causes in other lands, for those might be traveling abroad for pleasure or business or even nomadic people who cross from one country to the next without maybe realizing this fact. It's an interesting thought to realize only God knows in which land we shall die. My great-grandmother likely never realized when she and her husband traveled to China nearly 100 years ago that she would end up dying and being buried there due to complications from child birth. And another missionary friend had served for over 30 years in West Africa when one night as he and a native were returning from a meeting they were killed when a vehicle struck them. This verse made me think of them.
Sura 32 - al-Sajdah
2. The revelation of this Book free of doubt and involution is from the Lord of all the worlds.
I'd no sooner read the first line and questioned and noted this "free from doubt" on my paper when I continued on and read
3. Or do they say he has fabricated it? In fact, it is the truth from your Lord so that you may warn the people to whom no admonisher was sent before you. They may haply come to guidance.
That "in fact" part got me! Ha, ha! The thing is there are and were doubts though I'm sure people translate this as another kind of freedom from doubt. :) As for "involution" -- I question that this "revelation" is completely free from complexity. While the main message may be simple, the good deed/bad deed point system and rules for getting forgiveness or not can get a bit much when you add following Muhammad's every action. Or maybe it's so ingrained in the Muslims that it's second-nature and not difficult or complex at all.
12. If only you could see when the sinners will stand before their Lord, heads hung low, (and say:) "O Lord, we have seen and heard. So send us back. We shall do the right, for we have come to believe with certainty." 13. Had We intended We could have given every soul its guidance; but inevitable is My word that I will fill up Hell with men and jinns together. 14. So now suffer. As you forgot the meeting of this your Day of Doom, so have We forgotten you. Now taste the everlasting punishment for your deeds.
These are really sad verses, aren't they? Contrast verse 13 with this one.
22. Who is more wicked than he who is reminded of his Lord's revelations yet turns away from them; We will surely requite the sinners.
In 13 I see it was God's will that many be damned whereas in 22 it seems men were reminded yet turned away of their own accord. The predestination/free will conflict gets me!