The Arabic word for “roll” is “yukevviru.” The word is used to depict the act of wrapping a turban around someone’s head. This word was also used in the sense of overlapping of the night and day and vice versa. The reason for the day’s turning into night and the night’s turning into day is due to the spheroid form of the earth. In this verse also we observe implied the sphericity of the world.
He created the heavens and the earth truthfully. He rolls the night over the day, and rolls the day over the night… (39:5)
VIEW OF THE WORLD FROM SPACE ABOVE
During the Prophet’s lifetime it was impossible to scientifically determine the correct view. The scientific demonstration of the statements of the Quran was only possible after the lapse of a millennium. Why were these scientific explanations in the Quran-beyond the comprehension of the Prophet’s contemporaries, contradicting the hypotheses prevalent at the time and likely to cause harm to their messenger, certainly being of no benefit to him? We see that the Quran’s objective is to tell the truth at all costs. The fact that these phenomena could be explained thanks to the advance of science one thousand years later testifies to the universal address of the Quran and its character; it addresses not only its own time, but also the entirety of humanity until the end of the world.
When the astronomers went to space, they bore witness to this statement of the Quran and took photographs. The face of the world facing the sun was day, while the other side was night. The rotation of the world around its own axis made the night and day alternate, and in some parts the transition from day to night took place simultaneously.
The phenomena related to the roundness of the world and the succession of days and nights are the sine qua non conditions of our life on earth. Had our world not been of a spherical shape, had night and day not succeeded each other thanks to its rotation, life on the face of the earth exposed to heat would be extinct and in the portion left in the shade vegetation would not thrive. God’s omniscience, omnipotence and art, His perfect design of everything, and the miraculous character of the Book are better understood as we contemplate them.