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Revelation Order of the Quran

Revelation Order of the Qur’an

The Qur’an was sometimes revealed to respond to various events and incidents. Sometimes it was revealed to support the Prophet (saws) who was faced with many questions, whether by Muslims or non-Muslims, and hardships. Other times was revealed for legislation and for putting rules to govern the social, economical, and political life of Muslims.

The first verses to be revealed, according to the most correct opinion of scholars, are the first five verses of Surat Al-`Alaq, which happens to be Chapter 96 of the 114 chapters of the Qur’an.

Order of Verses

Muslim scholars agree that the order of the verses in every chapter was done or commanded by the Prophet (saws) himself following the commands of Almighty Allah.

The Prophet (saws) once told his Companions after he had received a certain revelation that the arch-angel Gabriel had specified for him the particular order of verses (Ahmad).

There are also many incidents narrated in the books of Sunnah regarding the Prophet’s (saws) recitation during prayer. The Companions used to pray every day behind the Prophet (saws) and he used to recite the Qur’an in the order given to him by Allah, and they used to learn and memorize from his recitation.

There have never been any incident in which any of the Companions reciting in any order that violated the order of the verses showed to us by the Prophet (saws).

Order of Surahs

As for the order of the surahs (chapters), the most accepted view is that it was also applied following an instruction given by Almighty Allah. It has been recorded that the Prophet (saws) reviewed the Qur’an with the arch-angel Gabriel 24 times all within his life.

Every year, he used to review it once during the month of Ramadan with Gabriel. During the final year of the Prophet’s life, Gabriel revised the Qur’an twice with the Prophet (saws) as a way of confirming it. The Prophet (saws), in turn, used to follow this order in teaching his Companions and communicating the message to them.

Significance of Order

The question of why a surah like Surat Al-`Alaq, which was revealed first not put first in the mushaf (a physical copy of the Qur’an), this will require us to search more in the Qur’an and explore some of its secrets. A deeper look into the whole matter will show us that the order of the Qur’an has a purpose and the revelation of the Qur’an also has a purpose.

For instance, the revelation of the Qur’an responding to specific problems or incidents carries the purpose of solving these problems or providing guidance in these incidents.

During the first 13 years of Islam, the main task of the Prophet (saws) was to call people to Islam based on the Qur’anic revelations that focused on the Oneness of Allah and righteous conduct.

When Muslims migrated to Madinah and an Islamic community started to be well-established and new challenges emerged, the main focus of the revelation was to regulate the life of Muslims through detailing the rulings pertaining to different acts of worship and setting punishments for crimes and so on.

This shows us that the revelation in each of the two stages has a purpose. When the revelation stage was completed, the whole Qur’an was there and the whole message was put in the order that was intended for it to stay till the Day of Judgment.

Explanation of Order

Such an order serves in delivering the message the Qur’an is put for, as it has got another purpose.

If you look at the first surah of the Qur’an, namely Al-Fatihah, you can perceive that it acts as a summary for the structure and the message of the Book (Qur’an) ahead of every reader.

Being Umm Al-Qur’an (the Mother of the Qur’an), it carries all its themes; it summarizes them. It tells us who Allah is: the source of all love and mercy. Therefore, knowing who He is, we should be thankful to Him and worship Him alone. We should seek His help, and He has all the power to give us whatever we need. It makes it clear that Allah is the only One Who can really guide. It speaks about life after death and the consequences of human action and behavior.

The same holds true for Surat Al-Baqarah. The first verses speak about the fact that this Book is above all doubts and it is beyond the abilities of doubters to try to challenge its validity. Then it gives a hint on its main theme — guiding the righteous — and then goes on to speak about the beginning of creation and the story of Adam to establish the theme that humankind is here on earth as a vicegerent of the Creator and should use the Book as a manual to carry out the mission in the right way.

All these themes and messages cannot be carried except through this logical order in which Allah commanded for the Qur’an to be put. If a surah like Al-`Alaq was to be put at the beginning instead of Al-Fatihah, it could have given a significance of course and give a message, but not the exact fully wonderful message that we can get from the order of the Qur’an as it is now.

Why Al-`Alaq in the Current Order?

As for why Surat Al-`Alaq is mentioned in this specific order in the Qur’an, scholars hold the view that in the previous surah of At-Tin, Allah says what means that He has created humans in the best make (At-Tin 95:4). The details of that creation are cited in Surat Al-`Alaq:

*{Read in the name of your Lord Who created. Created humans, out of a (mere) clot of congealed blood.}* (Al-`Alaq 96:1-2)

Revelation Order of the Qur’an

Revelation
Order
Surah Number
Surah Name    Arabic Name    Total Verses    Revelation Place
1    96    Alaq        19    Macca
2    68    Qalam        52    Macca
3    73    Muzammil        20    Macca
4    74    Mudathir        56    Macca
5    1    Fatehah        7    Macca
6    111    Lahab        5    Macca
7    81    Takwir        29    Macca
8    87    A’la        19    Macca
9    92    Leyl        21    Macca
10    89    Fajr        30    Macca
11    93    Duha        11    Macca
12    94    Inshira        8    Macca
13    103    Asr        3    Macca
14    100    Aadiyat        11    Macca
15    108    Kauthar        3    Macca
16    102    Takatur        8    Macca
17    107    Alma’un        7    Macca
18    109    Kafirun        6    Macca
19    105    Fil        5    Macca
20    113    Falaq        5    Macca
21    114    Nas        6    Macca
22    112    Iklas        4    Macca
23    53    Najm        62    Macca
24    80    Abasa        42    Macca
25    97    Qadr        5    Macca
26    91    Shams        15    Macca
27    85    Buruj        22    Macca
28    95    T’in        8    Macca
29    106    Qureysh        4    Macca
30    101    Qariah        11    Macca
31    75    Qiyamah        40    Macca
32    104    Humazah        9    Macca
33    77    Mursalat        50    Macca
34    50    Q’af        45    Macca
35    90    Balad        20    Macca
36    86    Tariq        17    Macca
37    54    Qamr        55    Macca
38    38    Sad        88    Macca
39    7    A’Raf        206    Macca
40    72    Jinn        28    Macca
41    36    Ya’sin        83    Macca
42    25    Furqan        77    Macca
43    35    Fatir        45    Macca
44    19    Maryam        98    Macca
45    20    Ta Ha        135    Macca
46    56    Waqiah        96    Macca
47    26    Shuara        227    Macca
48    27    Naml        93    Macca
49    28    Qasas        88    Macca
50    17    Bani Israil        111    Macca
51    10    Yunus        109    Macca
52    11    Hud        123    Macca
53    12    Yousuf        111    Macca
54    15    Hijr        99    Macca
55    6    Anam        165    Macca
56    37    Saffat        182    Macca
57    31    Luqman        34    Macca
58    34    Saba        54    Macca
59    39    Zumar        75    Macca
60    40    Mumin        85    Macca
61    41    Hamim Sajdah        54    Macca
62    42    Shura        53    Macca
63    43    Zukhruf        89    Macca
64    44    Dukhan        59    Macca
65    45    Jathiyah        37    Macca
66    46    Ahqaf        35    Macca
67    51    Dhariyat        60    Macca
68    88    Ghashiya        26    Madina
69    18    Kahf        110    Macca
70    16    Nahl        128    Macca
71    71    Noah        28    Macca
72    14    Ibrahim        52    Macca
73    21    Anbiya        112    Macca
74    23    Muminun        118    Macca
75    32    Sajdah        30    Macca
76    52    Tur        49    Macca
77    67    Mulk        30    Macca
78    69    Haqqah        52    Macca
79    70    Maarij        44    Macca
80    78    Naba        40    Macca
81    79    Naziat        46    Macca
82    82    Infitar        19    Macca
83    84    Inshiqaq        25    Macca
84    30    Rum        60    Macca
85    29    Ankabut        85    Macca
86    83    Tatfif        36    Macca
87    2    Baqarah        286    Madina
88    8    Anfal        75    Madina
89    3    Aal-e-Imran        200    Madina
90    33    Ahzab        73    Madina
91    60    Mumtahana        13    Madina
92    4    Nisa        176    Madina
93    99    Zilzal        8    Macca
94    57    Hadid        29    Madina
95    47    Muhammad        38    Madina
96    13    Ra’d        43    Madina
97    55    Rahman        78    Macca
98    76    Dahr        31    Madina
99    65    Talaq        12    Madina
100    98    Beyinnah        8    Madina
101    59    Hashr        24    Madina
102    24    Nur        64    Madina
103    22    Hajj        78    Madina
104    63    Munafiqun        11    Madina
105    58    Mujadila        22    Madina
106    49    Hujurat        18    Madina
107    66    Tahrim        12    Madina
108    64    Taghabun        18    Madina
109    61    Saff        14    Madina
110    62    Jumah        11    Madina
111    48    Fath        29    Madina
112    5    Maidah        120    Madina
113    9    Taubah        129    Madina
114    110    Nasr        3    Madina