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They question thee (O Muhammad) with regard to warfare in the sacred month. Say: Warfare therein is a great (transgression), but to turn (men) from the way of Allah, and to disbelieve in Him and in the Inviolable Place of Worship, and to expel His people thence, is a greater with Allah; for persecution is worse than killing. And they will not cease from fighting against you till they have made you renegades from your religion, if they can. And whoso becometh a renegade and dieth in his disbelief: such are they whose works have fallen both in the world and the Hereafter. Such are rightful owners of the Fire: they will abide therein. 217 Lo! those who believe, and those who emigrate (to escape the persecution) and strive in the way of Allah, these have hope of Allah's mercy. Allah is Forgiving, Merciful. 218 ۞ They ask you about intoxicants and games of chance. Say: In both of them there is a great sin and means of profit for men, and their sin is greater than their profit. And they ask you as to what they should spend. Say: What you can spare. Thus does Allah make clear to you the communications, that you may ponder, 219 And they ask "What ought we to spend (in the way of Allah)"? Say "Spend whatever you can spare." Thus Allah makes His commands clear to you so that you may think about the good of both this world and the Hereafter. They ask you about the right way of dealing with orphans. Say "The right way is that which is for their good." Then there is no harm if you live a common life with them for they are after all your own brethren. Allah knows well the one who means harm and also the one who means good. If Allah had willed He would have been hard upon you in this matter for He is All-Powerful but He is at the same time AlI-Wise. 220 Do not marry women who associate partners with God until they believe. A believing bondwoman is better than a woman who associates partners with God, however pleasing she may appear to you. Nor give believing women in marriage to men who associate partners with God, till they have believed; a believing bondman is certainly better than a man who associates partners with God, even though he may please you. Such people call you to Hell-fire; but God calls you to Paradise and to forgiveness. He makes His messages clear to people, so that they might bear them in mind. 221
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