We ask God for protection from the cursed devil, and:
(1:1) In God's name, who is great and continuously merciful.
(1:2) Oh Lord, all praise and thanks are due to You. You own and take care of everyone, and
(1:3) we rely on the great and continuous mercy we receive from You.
(1:4) You are the king and owner of the Day of Judgment when we will return to You.
(1:5) We commit to worship, obey, and rely on You.
(1:6) Guide us to the straight path to You.
(1:7) Guide us to the path of those who received a true blessing from You. And protect us from following the misguided path of the ignorant or those who earned your anger for intentionally disobeying You.
Overview: In chapter 16, verse 98, the Quran instructs that we are to ask God for protection from the devil before reading the Quran. After doing so, the chapter then begins. The purpose of this chapter is to teach us how to pray to God for guidance, and the rest of the Quran is God’s answer to this prayer.
Verse 1-2: The purpose of this work is to make the text as smooth and easy to read as possible for the average person with little or no background with the Quran. There are many stylistic judgment calls that go into the choice of words for this work. In this case, those who prefer can substitute “Allah” for “God” in this chapter and most of the rest without affecting the rhythm of the text. Also in Arabic, adjectives can be used as proper names. In verse 1, the verse was presented as the adjective understanding, but it can also be understood as "In God's Name, The Greatly Merciful, The Continuously Merciful."
Verse 2-3 : These verses are literally phrased in the third person, “All praise is due to God…” However, the intent is for these verses to be affirmative statements from the person reading the chapter about God, before they ask God for guidance in verse 6. So it is as if God is telling us that, before you ask for guidance, call upon him saying, “Oh Lord, all praise and thanks are due to You…”
Verse 4 : There are two correct ways of reading this verse in Arabic. In one way, the word “King” is used and in the other it is “Owner.” As much as possible, alternate correct textual readings were combined together in this work although it is equally correct to use one meaning or the other separately.
Verse 7 : The true reality of God, Heaven, Hell, and the Day of Judgment are all beyond human imagination. So God uses terms and ideas within our experience to bring ideas closer to our understanding, like anger, happiness, gardens and rivers, and chains and fire. Those who intentionally disobey God earn God’s anger. This is another way of expressing the idea that God does not forgive them. Instead, God denies them His mercy and punishes them for what they did. In the chapter titled “The Cow” God gives us detailed examples of people who intentionally disobeyed Him so that we can learn from their mistakes.