7:164 wa idh qaalat um-matum minhum lima ta’IZuuna qawmanil-laahu muhlikuhum aw mu’Adh-dhibuhum ‘Adhaaban shadiydaa* qaaluu ma’Ådhiratan ilaa rab-bikum wa la’Al-lahum yat-taquun
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Ahmed Raza Khan: Mohammed Aqib Qadri:
And when a group among them said, "Why do you preach to a people whom Allah is going to destroy or mete out a severe punishment?" They said, "To have an excuse before your Lord, and that perhaps they may fear."
When some of them said: "Why do ye preach to a people whom Allah will destroy or visit with a terrible punishment?"- said the preachers:" To discharge our duty to your Lord, and perchance they may fear Him."
And when a community among them said: Why preach ye to a folk whom Allah is about to destroy or punish with an awful doom, they said: In order to be free from guilt before your Lord, and that haply they may ward off (evil).