Then has there not been a [single] city that believed so its faith benefited it except the people of Jonah? When they believed, We removed from them the punishment of disgrace in worldly life and gave them enjoyment for a time.(Quran, 10:98)

so the people of jonah are the only city that benefited from faith? why? does it because they fast 40days?

Bible Jonah:3(4-10)

4Then Jonah began to go through the city one day’s walk; and he cried out and said, “Yet forty days and Nineveh will be overthrown.” 5Then the people of Nineveh believed in God; and they called a fast and put on sackcloth from the greatest to the least of them. 6When the word reached the king of Nineveh, he arose from his throne, laid aside his robe from him, covered himself with sackcloth and sat on the ashes. 7He issued a proclamation and it said, “In Nineveh by the decree of the king and his nobles: Do not let man, beast, herd, or flock taste a thing. Do not let them eat or drink water. 8“But both man and beast must be covered with sackcloth; and let men call on God earnestly that each may turn from his wicked way and from the violence which is in his hands. 9“Who knows, God may turn and relent and withdraw His burning anger so that we will not perish.” 10When God saw their deeds, that they turned from their wicked way, then God relented concerning the calamity which He had declared He would bring upon them. And He did not do it.

  • This isn't really an answer, but maybe it will be useful to you. Tafsir Ibn Kathir comments as follows: ...between Musa and Yunus, there was no nation, in its entirety, that believed except the people of Yunus, the people of Naynawa (Nineveh). And they only believed because they feared that the torment from which their Messenger warned them, might strike them. Maybe this could mean that the people of Nineveh were the first to finally listen, the first ever to be afraid? Commented Jul 17, 2016 at 23:00
  • Of course that doesn't explain why they listened, but I thought it might be useful information. Commented Jul 17, 2016 at 23:01
  • @GreatBigBore a quote with a litlle more context from ibn Kathir would underline that this seems to be the answer.
    – Sassir
    Commented Jul 20, 2016 at 6:39

5 Answers 5


From Tafhim al-Qur'an, by Sayyid Abul Ala Maududi, in his tafsir on Yunus

As regards the question why the threatened torment was warded off from the people of Jonah as an exception to the Divine principle...the explanation given by various commentators of the Qur'an seems to be correct.-Prophet Jonah left the place of his Mission without Divine permission after warning the people of the torment. Therefore Allah forgave the Assyrians (Nineveh was the capital of Assyria), when they repented after seeing some Signs of the coming torment.

  • the people of israels who got lot of great miracles from god, doesn't benefited from faith. the people of jesus(christians) seems also doesn't benefited faith. more over, seems like the people of quran(ie muslims) also doesn't benefited from faith.(certainly some individuals in these groups benefited the faith). but the people of Nineveh benefited from faith. is it because they have fasted 40 days? if god willing i will know the answer.
    – suhailvs
    Commented Aug 3, 2016 at 3:27

Why does the Qur'an say that only the people of Yunus benefited from faith? There is no doubt that in other tribes, too, many groups believed. What distinguishes the people of Yunus from other tribes is that they all believed collectively, before the final punishment of the Lord came. Among the other tribes, a large group remained stubbornly opposed, until the decree of God's final punishment was issued, they often expressed their faith after seeing this divine punishment.

Were it not for a town that believed, then its faith would benefit it, except for the people of Yunus, who would not have believed. Why did not any of the towns and villages believe that (their faith is timely, and) useful to them ?! "But the people of Yunus, when they believed, We removed from them the disgraceful torment in the life of this world, and We provided them with enjoyment for a while." (Younes / 98)



All perfect praise be to Allah

What it means by the true beneficiaries of their belief were them. It means that they had belief and they used it in such a way that Allah over-ruled his own divine principle. It's a principle that when Allah decides to destroy a nation for something. He never reverts his decision. But only these people asked for forgiveness in such a way that Allah reversed his decision.

This is not to compare with others, it's just a good thing about that which Allah has told us through Quran. That this is how to get true benefit from your faith. Allah tells stories of the past nations in Quran only because we can learn from them.

Qatadah said: "No town has denied the truth and then believed when they saw the scourge, and then their belief benefited them, with the exception of the people of Yunus. When they lost their Prophet and they thought that the scourge was close upon them, Allah sent through their hearts the desire to repent. So they wore woolen fabrics and they separated each animal from its offspring. They then cried out to Allah for forty nights. When Allah saw the truth in their hearts and that they were sincere in their repentance and regrets, He removed the scourge from them.'' Qatadah said: "It was mentioned that the people of Yunus were in Naynawa, the land of Mosul.'' This was also reported from Ibn Masud, Mujahid, Said bin Jubayr and others from the Salaf.

Read further tafseer(explanation) of this ayah for more details.

Allah knows best


The verse in question is:

Then has there not been a [single] city that believed so its faith benefited it except the people of Jonah? When they believed, We removed from them the punishment of disgrace in worldly life and gave them enjoyment for a time. (10:98)

It may seem confusing if taken out of the context of the Surah and what is being talked about.

Obviously, people benefit from faith in general. We, as believers, benefit from faith. But, that is not what this verse is talking about.

Rather, the verse is talking about benefitting from faith after seeing the punishment. The verses right before are:

Indeed, those upon whom the word of your Lord has come into effect will not believe, Even if every sign should come to them, until they see the painful punishment. (96-97)

And the story right before this was about how the faith of the Pharaoh did not help him at all:

And We took the Children of Israel across the sea, and Pharaoh and his soldiers pursued them in tyranny and enmity until, when drowning overtook him, he said, "I believe that there is no deity except that in whom the Children of Israel believe, and I am of the Muslims." Now? And you had disobeyed [Him] before and were of the corrupters? (90-91)

So, a simple explanation of the verse is as follows:

No city believed after the punishment came and benefitted from this belief except the people of Yunus (AS). When they believed, their belief actually saved them from punishment.

As for the reason this happened, it was because Yunus (AS) had not fulfilled his duties entirely in preaching to them and had left prematurely promising punishment. That is why punishment came but it was not absolute like other people's punishments.


People of Yunus Alaihissalam (Jonah) upon whom Allah sent dark (black) clouds due to which they got terrified because it was due to their disbelief and arrogance Prophet Yunus (Alaihissalam-peace be upon him) decided to move out from their town and take the journey of (probably) river Tigris (please refer this link: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mosul). They knew the story of Prophet Nuh Alaihissalam and the fate of his people. The people of Nuh were also faced by such a punishment and initially they thought the dark clouds will bring them rain because they were the people of desert in Iraq (same as Nineveh town of people of Jonah or Yunus (A.S). So they started trembling at the prospect of the impending punishment from Almighty Allah and prayed to Allah to avert this and also for sending the Prophet (Yunus) back to them so that they can repent and be guided rightly on the religion of Allah. Can you see some students get happy when teacher suddenly leaves the class. But some students are unhappy because they lose the lessons and they can not perform better in their studies). Humour. So Allah accepted their true repentance and send their Teacher and Prophet (Yunus-A.S) back to them. This teaches us the lesson that if we break Allah's commands, the status of the person does not matter for getting Allah's anger and punishment. Both the parties here violated Allah's command and both repented truly and were saved because Allah wants repentance and returning to His Will that is surrendering to Allah and His Guidance and Words and Commands and rejecting anything against this. Like man became from Ape or monkey (evolution) from Darwin this is also Satanist plot to deceive people. So do repent if any have such ideas in your mind, which goes against Allah's will and power.

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