In the Quran, Allah (God) tells us at many places about His power that created this universe. Allah mentions His perfect ability and infinite authority, since it is He Who has raised the heavens without pillars by His permission and order. He, by His leave, order and power, has elevated the heavens high above the earth, distant and far away from reach. The heaven nearest to the present world (first heaven) encompasses the earth from all directions, and is also high above it from every direction. Each of the heavens encompasses the one below it and the distance between each of the seven heavens is enormous. This shows the enormous size of the universe that is visible to us.
The following are some of the verses from the Quran on universe:
Allah is He Who raised the heavens without any pillars that you can see. Then, He Istawa (rose above) the Throne (really in a manner that suits His Majesty). He has subjected the sun and the moon (to continue going round)! Each running (its course) for a term appointed. He regulates all affairs, explaining the Ayat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) in detail, that you may believe with certainty in the meeting with your Lord.
Quran, Surah Ar-Raad (Verse 2)
He also says:
We created not the heavens and the earth and all that is between them for a (mere) play.
Quran, Surah Al-Anbiya (Verse 16)
See you not that Allah has subjected to you (mankind) all that is on the earth, and the ships that sail through the sea by His Command? He withholds the heaven from falling on the earth except by His Leave. Verily, Allah is, for mankind, full of Kindness, Most Merciful.
Quran, Surah Al-Hajj (Verse 65)
Have not those who disbelieve known that the heavens and the earth were joined together as one united piece, then We parted them? And We have made from water every living thing. Will they not then believe?
Quran, Surah Al-Anbiya, Verse 30
The Originator of the heavens and the earth. When He decrees a matter, He only says to it : “Be!” – and it is. (Quran 2:117)
Reflections from these verses
- Allah’s ability and power is best affirmed when we wonder at the creation of the heaven that is elevated (above the earth) without pillars.
- Allah keeps the myriads of heavenly bodies in space without any visible and perceptible support.
- Though there is nothing apparent and visible supporting these bodies, there is an invariable and imperceptible Power which is not only holding and keeping them – including the earth we inhabit – in their proper places and orbits, but also prevents any collision between them.
- The whole universe belongs to Allah alone, and none besides Him has any right to service and worship.
- This world has been created with a definite purpose and not as a plaything.
- Allah does not put man to trial and conflict for the sake of mere fun.
- The purpose of the creation of this world is to stage a conflict between the Truth and falsehood.
- Falsehood has always been defeated and destroyed: this reality should be considered seriously.
- If one builds the system of life on the false presumption that it is mere fun, one will meet with the same consequences as the former people did, who presumed that the world was a mere show and pastime.
- A warning should be taken from the fate of the former peoples and the Message of Allah should be seriously.
- The Ayats refute the conception of life which was based on the assumption that man was free to do whatever he liked, and there was none to call him to account or take him to task: that there was no life in the Hereafter where one’s good deeds would be rewarded and evil deeds punished. In other words, this meant that the whole universe had been created without any serious purpose and therefore there was no need to pay any heed to the Message of the Prophet.
(References: Sayyid Abul Ala Maududi – Tafhim al-Qur’an, and Tafsir Ibn Kathir)