39:23 Allāh has revealed the best of narration— a Scripture consistent, oft-repeating, whereat do shudder the skins of those who fear their Rabb. And then their skins and their hearts do soften towards the remembrance of Allāh. This is the guidance of Allāh, He guides with it whom He wishes. And whom Allāh leaves in straying, there is no guide for him then.
39:23 The word nazzala indicates gradual and continuous process of revelation of the divine message. During the twenty-three years of revelation, the community, in general, experienced tremendous vicissitudes impacting their political, social and cultural fundamentals. The Qur’ān attempted to address many of these issues through frequently repeated moral guidance with examples and illustrations drawn from various past communities. The word mutashābih, derived from root word shabbaha, means something that is mutually reasonable or that which is similar. The usage of this word indicates the verses of the Qur’ān are mutually supporting: some of the verses explain, supplement and amplify other verses (3:7) but never contradict (4:82; 39:28). Since the Qur’ān was transmitted orally, its major themes and stories were oft-repeated in diverse ways to drive home its meaning. The word mathāni (lit. double, repeated portion), thus, gives a characteristic identity of the Qur’ān, therefore al-mathāni is a symbolic name of the Qur’ān (cf. 15:87). The clause Allāh guides whom He pleases does not indicate any arbitrary action of Allāh rather it implies Allāh guides all those who wish to be guided (2:213,272; 6:39; 14:4; 16:93; 24:35,46; 28:56; 35:8; 42:13; 74:31).