AsSalalmu Alaikum,

Someone asks what the best way to read the Quran is. I responded by saying that the best way, in my opinion, was to read it, at least for the first time, in the order, it was revealed. After making Dua for understanding, doing so will go a long way to clear up many perceived uncertainties and misconceptions may have. 

Additionally, reading the Quran in the order it was revealed gives you a glimpse into the history of Islam at its early stages, when Muhammad (pbuh) was receiving what would become the most remarkable book of all time. 

Insha’Allah, we should all read the Quran this way at least once. 


What follows is not written by me but rather comes from Mission Islam at https://www.missionislam.com/quran/revealationorder.htm – accessed on 4 August 2021 at 1900 HRS


The Qur’an was sometimes revealed to respond to various events and incidents. Sometimes it was revealed to support the Prophet (saws) who was faced with many questions, whether by Muslims or non-Muslims, and hardships. Other times was revealed for legislation and for putting rules to govern the social, economical, and political life of Muslims.

The first verses to be revealed, according to the most correct opinion of scholars, are the first five verses of Surat Al-`Alaq, which happens to be Chapter 96 of the 114 chapters of the Qur’an.

Order of Verses

Muslim scholars agree that the order of the verses in every chapter was done or commanded by the Prophet (saws) himself following the commands of Almighty Allah.

The Prophet (saws) once told his Companions after he had received a certain revelation that the arch-angel Gabriel had specified for him the particular order of verses (Ahmad).

There are also many incidents narrated in the books of Sunnah regarding the Prophet’s (saws) recitation during prayer. The Companions used to pray every day behind the Prophet (saws) and he used to recite the Qur’an in the order given to him by Allah, and they used to learn and memorize from his recitation.

There have never been any incident in which any of the Companions reciting in any order that violated the order of the verses showed to us by the Prophet (saws).

Order of Surahs

As for the order of the surahs (chapters), the most accepted view is that it was also applied following an instruction given by Almighty Allah. It has been recorded that the Prophet (saws) reviewed the Qur’an with the arch-angel Gabriel 24 times all within his life.

Every year, he used to review it once during the month of Ramadan with Gabriel. During the final year of the Prophet’s life, Gabriel revised the Qur’an twice with the Prophet (saws) as a way of confirming it. The Prophet (saws), in turn, used to follow this order in teaching his Companions and communicating the message to them.

Significance of Order

The question of why a surah like Surat Al-`Alaq, which was revealed first not put first in the mushaf (a physical copy of the Qur’an), this will require us to search more in the Qur’an and explore some of its secrets. A deeper look into the whole matter will show us that the order of the Qur’an has a purpose and the revelation of the Qur’an also has a purpose.

For instance, the revelation of the Qur’an responding to specific problems or incidents carries the purpose of solving these problems or providing guidance in these incidents.

During the first 13 years of Islam, the main task of the Prophet (saws) was to call people to Islam based on the Qur’anic revelations that focused on the Oneness of Allah and righteous conduct.

When Muslims migrated to Madinah and an Islamic community started to be well-established and new challenges emerged, the main focus of the revelation was to regulate the life of Muslims through detailing the rulings pertaining to different acts of worship and setting punishments for crimes and so on.  

This shows us that the revelation in each of the two stages has a purpose. When the revelation stage was completed, the whole Qur’an was there and the whole message was put in the order that was intended for it to stay till the Day of Judgment.

Explanation of Order

Such an order serves in delivering the message the Qur’an is put for, as it has got another purpose.

If you look at the first surah of the Qur’an, namely Al-Fatihah, you can perceive that it acts as a summary for the structure and the message of the Book (Qur’an) ahead of every reader.

Being Umm Al-Qur’an (the Mother of the Qur’an), it carries all its themes; it summarizes them. It tells us who Allah is: the source of all love and mercy. Therefore, knowing who He is, we should be thankful to Him and worship Him alone. We should seek His help, and He has all the power to give us whatever we need. It makes it clear that Allah is the only One Who can really guide. It speaks about life after death and the consequences of human action and behavior.

The same holds true for Surat Al-Baqarah. The first verses speak about the fact that this Book is above all doubts and it is beyond the abilities of doubters to try to challenge its validity. Then it gives a hint on its main theme — guiding the righteous — and then goes on to speak about the beginning of creation and the story of Adam to establish the theme that humankind is here on earth as a vicegerent of the Creator and should use the Book as a manual to carry out the mission in the right way.

All these themes and messages cannot be carried except through this logical order in which Allah commanded for the Qur’an to be put. If a surah like Al-`Alaq was to be put at the beginning instead of Al-Fatihah, it could have given a significance of course and give a message, but not the exact fully wonderful message that we can get from the order of the Qur’an as it is now.

Why Al-`Alaq in the Current Order?

As for why Surat Al-`Alaq is mentioned in this specific order in the Qur’an, scholars hold the view that in the previous surah of At-Tin, Allah says what means that He has created humans in the best make (At-Tin 95:4). The details of that creation are cited in Surat Al-`Alaq:

*{Read in the name of your Lord Who created. Created humans, out of a (mere) clot of congealed blood.}* (Al-`Alaq 96:1-2)

Revelation Order of the Qur’an

Revelation
Order
Surah NumberSurah NameArabic NameTotal VersesRevelation Place
196Alaq19Macca
268Qalam52Macca
373Muzammil20Macca
474Mudathir56Macca
51Fatehah7Macca
6111Lahab5Macca
781Takwir29Macca
887A’la19Macca
992Leyl21Macca
1089Fajr30Macca
1193Duha11Macca
1294Inshira8Macca
13103Asr3Macca
14100Aadiyat11Macca
15108Kauthar3Macca
16102Takatur8Macca
17107Alma’un7Macca
18109Kafirun6Macca
19105Fil5Macca
20113Falaq5Macca
21114Nas6Macca
22112Iklas4Macca
2353Najm62Macca
2480Abasa42Macca
2597Qadr5Macca
2691Shams15Macca
2785Buruj22Macca
2895T’in8Macca
29106Qureysh4Macca
30101Qariah11Macca
3175Qiyamah40Macca
32104Humazah9Macca
3377Mursalat50Macca
3450Q’af45Macca
3590Balad20Macca
3686Tariq17Macca
3754Qamr55Macca
3838Sad88Macca
397A’Raf206Macca
4072Jinn28Macca
4136Ya’sin83Macca
4225Furqan77Macca
4335Fatir45Macca
4419Maryam98Macca
4520Ta Ha135Macca
4656Waqiah96Macca
4726Shuara227Macca
4827Naml93Macca
4928Qasas88Macca
5017Bani Israil111Macca
5110Yunus109Macca
5211Hud123Macca
5312Yousuf111Macca
5415Hijr99Macca
556Anam165Macca
5637Saffat182Macca
5731Luqman34Macca
5834Saba54Macca
5939Zumar75Macca
6040Mumin85Macca
6141Hamim Sajdah54Macca
6242Shura53Macca
6343Zukhruf89Macca
6444Dukhan59Macca
6545Jathiyah37Macca
6646Ahqaf35Macca
6751Dhariyat60Macca
6888Ghashiya26Madina
6918Kahf110Macca
7016Nahl128Macca
7171Noah28Macca
7214Ibrahim52Macca
7321Anbiya112Macca
7423Muminun118Macca
7532Sajdah30Macca
7652Tur49Macca
7767Mulk30Macca
7869Haqqah52Macca
7970Maarij44Macca
8078Naba40Macca
8179Naziat46Macca
8282Infitar19Macca
8384Inshiqaq25Macca
8430Rum60Macca
8529Ankabut85Macca
8683Tatfif36Macca
872Baqarah286Madina
888Anfal75Madina
893Aal-e-Imran200Madina
9033Ahzab73Madina
9160Mumtahana13Madina
924Nisa176Madina
9399Zilzal8Macca
9457Hadid29Madina
9547Muhammad38Madina
9613Ra’d43Madina
9755Rahman78Macca
9876Dahr31Madina
9965Talaq12Madina
10098Beyinnah8Madina
10159Hashr24Madina
10224Nur64Madina
10322Hajj78Madina
10463Munafiqun11Madina
10558Mujadila22Madina
10649Hujurat18Madina
10766Tahrim12Madina
10864Taghabun18Madina
10961Saff14Madina
11062Jumah11Madina
11148Fath29Madina
1125Maidah120Madina
1139Taubah129Madina
114110Nasr3Madina