Fifth Point: This is the excellence in its manner of exposition; that is to say, the superiority, conciseness, and grandeur. Just as there is eloquence in the word-order, the wording, and the meaning, and a uniqueness in its style, so in its manner of exposition is there a superiority and excellence. Indeed, all the categories and levels of speech and address, like encouragement and deterring, praise and censure, demonstration and guidance, explanation and silencing in argument, are at the highest degree in the Qur’an’s exposition.
Of the innumerable examples of its manner of exposition1 in the category of encouragement and urging is that in Sura Has there not been over man a long period of time when he was nothing – [not even] mentioned?;2 this is as sweet as the water of Kawthar and flows with the fluency of the spring of Salsabil, it is as fine as the raiment of the houris.
Of the numerous examples of the category of deterring and threatening is the start of Sura Has the story reached you of the Overwhelming Event?3 Here the Qur’an’s exposition has an effect like lead boiling in the ears of the people of misguidance, and fire burning in their brains, and zaqqum scalding their palates, and Hell assaulting their faces, and like a bitter thorny tree in their stomachs. An official like Hell charged by someone with inflicting torment and torture in order to demonstrate his threats, and its splitting apart with seething rage, and its saying: well-nigh bursting with fury4 certainly show how awesomely dreadful that person’s threats are.
Of the thousands of examples in the category of praise, the Qur’an’s manner of exposition in the five Suras starting al-Hamdulillah is brilliant like the sun,5 adorned like the stars, majestic like the heavens and the earth, lovable like the angels, compassionate like tenderness towards young in this world, and beautiful like Paradise in the hereafter.
Of the thousands of examples in the category of censure and restraint, in the verse, Would any among you like to eat the flesh of his dead brother,6 it censures six times. It restrains from backbiting forcibly six times over. It is like this: as is known, the Hamza at the beginning of the verse is interrogative. This seeps through all the words of the verse like water. Thus, with the first Hamza it asks: Have you no reason, the seat of question and answer, that you do not understand how ugly it is?
With the second, it asks with the word like: Is your heart, the seat of love and hate, so corrupted that it loves the most despicable thing?
The style here has slipped into the clothes of this Sura’s meaning.
In these phrases is an allusion to the matters discussed in these Suras.