Surah Ali-Imran: Chapter 3 (line 10-20) The Family of Iram

10. As for those who disbelieve, neither their wealth nor their children will avail them anything against God. These will be fuel for the Fire.

11. Like the behavior of Pharaoh’s people and those before them. They rejected Our signs, so God seized them for their sins. God is Strict in retribution.

12. Say to those who disbelieve, “You will be defeated, and rounded up into Hell-an awful resting-place.”

13. There was a sign for you in the two parties that met. One party fighting in the way of God, and the other was disbelieving. They saw them with their own eyes twice their number. But God supports with His help whomever He wills. In that is a lesson for those with insight.

14. Adorned for the people is the love of desires, such as women, and children, and piles upon piles of gold and silver, and branded horses, and livestock, and fields. These are the conveniences of the worldly life, but with God lies the finest resort.

15. Say, “Shall I inform you of something better than that? For those who are righteous, with their Lord are Gardens beneath which rivers flow, where they will remain forever, and purified spouses, and acceptance from God.” God is Observant of the servants.

16. Those who say, “Our Lord, we have believed, so forgive us our sins, and save us from the suffering of the Fire.”

17. The patient, and the truthful, and the reverent, and the charitable, and the seekers of forgiveness at dawn.

18. God bears witness that there is no god but He, as do the angels, and those endowed with knowledge-upholding justice. There is no god but He, the Mighty, the Wise.

19. Religion with God is Islam. Those to whom the Scripture was given differed only after knowledge came to them, out of envy among themselves. Whoever rejects the signs of God-God is quick to take account.

20. If they argue with you, say, “I have surrendered myself to God, and those who follow me.” And say to those who were given the Scripture, and to the unlearned, “Have you surrendered?” If they have surrendered, then they are guided; but if they turn away, then your duty is to convey. God is Seeing of the servants.

My Interpretation: 

Gabriel is telling Muhammad that wealth of the ancient civilizations of the Ancient Egyptians and even before the Egyptians eventually was taking away from God. There is no rewards in the hereafter for those that become obsessed with wealth in this life and forgot what is really important. God does not like the rebellious souls that have transgressed in wealth while others suffer. No wonder so many do not like the words of the Quran, many people do not want to give up the wealth that they have acquired this lifetime. But it is inevitable that the only thing you can take with you in the hereafter is your deeds and what is in your conscience. Nothing else.

Muhammad is being told to go and tell the people that lust after wealth is truly a temporary enjoyment and the best is the spiritual wealth that God fills you with. This is a richness that money can never buy. Muhammad needs to courageously ask those who were given the Bible and Torah of the past (the People of the Book), to really say that they fully submit themselves to God and not to this world. As we know many religious leaders did indeed use religion as a form of wealth gain and God sees this and is asking Muhammad to warn them. If they do not want to listen, Muhammad is told to keep teaching until it pierces their heart, but as we know compulsion or force in religion is never allowed. God knows what is a person’s hearts and the sincerity to do good.