[But] do you think that you could enter paradise without having suffered like those [believers] who passed away before you?199
Misfortune and hardship befell them, and so shaken were they that the apostle, and the believers with him, would exclaim, "When will God's succour come?"200
Oh, verily, God's succour is [always] near!
Lit., "while yet there has not come to you the like of [what has come to] those who passed away before you". This passage connects with the words, "God guides onto a straight way him that wills [to be guided]", which occur at the end of the preceding verse. The meaning is that intellectual cognition of the truth cannot, by itself, be a means of attaining to ultimate bliss: it must be complemented by readiness to sacrifice and spiritual purification through suffering.
The preceding reference to "those who passed away before you" makes it obvious that the term "the apostle" is used here in a generic sense, applying to all the apostles (Manar II, 301).