Allah, the Exalted, says,
(And) This is an introductory to what is implied: "Verily, We sent.''
(to the `Ad (people) their brother Hud.) Hud came to them commanding them to worship Allah alone, without any associates. He forbade them from worshipping the idols which they made up, inventing names as gods. He informed them that he did not want any reward from them for his sincere advising and conveying of Allah's Message. He only sought his reward from Allah, the One Who created him.
(Will you not then understand) Someone has come calling you to what will benefit your situation in this life and the Hereafter without asking for any wage (from them). Then he commanded them to seek the forgiveness of the One Who is capable of expiating previous sins. He also commanded them to repent for that which they may do in the future. Whoever has these characteristics, Allah will make his sustenance easy for him, grant him ease in his affairs and guard over his situation. For this reason Allah says,
(He will send you (from the sky) abundant rain,)
(53. They said: "O Hud! No evidence have you brought us, and we shall not leave our gods for your (mere) saying! And we are not believers in you.) (54. All that we say is that some of our gods (false deities) have seized you with evil (madness). He said: "I call Allah to witness and bear you witness that I am free from that which you ascribe as partners in worship,) (55. Besides Him (Allah). So plot against me, all of you, and give me no respite.'') (56. I put my trust in Allah, my Lord and your Lord! There is not a moving creature but He has the grasp of its forelock. Verily, my Lord is on the straight path (the truth).)
Allah, the Exalted, informs that they said to their Prophet,
(No evidence have you brought us.) This means that they claimed that Hud had not brought them any proof or evidence for what he claimed.
(and we shall not leave our gods for your (mere) saying!) They were saying how could his mere statement, "Leave these gods,'' be sufficient proof for them to leave their idols
(and we are not believers in you.) This means that they did not believe what he was saying was true.
(All that we say is that some of our gods have seized you with evil.) They were saying, "We think that some of our idols have afflicted you with madness and insanity in your intellect because you are trying to stop them from being worshipped and defame them.''
(He said: "I call Allah to witness and bear you witness, that I am free from that which you ascribe as partners in worship besides Him (Allah).) (11:54-55) Here, he is saying, "Verily, I am innocent of all of the rivals and idols (that you associate with Allah).
(So plot against me, all of you,) you and your gods if they are true.''
(and give me no respite.) the blinking of an eye.'' Then, Allah says,
(I put my trust in Allah, my Lord and your Lord! There is not a moving creature but He has the grasp of its forelock.) Every creature is under His (Allah's) power and His authority. He is the Best Judge, the Most Just, Who does not do any injustice in His ruling. For verily, He is upon the straight path. Verily, this argument contains a far-reaching proof and absolute evidence of the truthfulness of what Hud had come to them with. It also proves the falsehood of them worshipping idols that could not benefit nor harm them. Rather, these idols were inanimate objects that could not hear, see, befriend, or make enmity. The only One Who is worthy of having worship directed solely towards Him is Allah alone, without any partners. He is the One in Whose Hand is the sovereignty and He is in control of all things. There is nothing except that it is under His owner- ship, power and authority. Thus, there is no deity worthy of worship except Him and there is no Lord other than Him.
(57. So if you turn away, still I have conveyed the Message with which I was sent to you. My Lord will make another people succeed you, and you will not harm Him in the least. Surely, my Lord is Guardian over all things.) (58. And when Our commandment came, We saved Hud and those who believed with him by a mercy from Us, and We saved them from a severe torment.) (59. Such were )the people of( `Ad. They rejected the Ayat of their Lord and disobeyed His Messengers, and followed the command of every proud, obstinate (oppressor of the truth from their leaders).) (60. And they were pursued by a curse in this world and (so they will be) on the Day of Resurrection. No doubt! Verily, `Ad disbelieved in their Lord. So away with `Ad, the people of Hud.) Hud says to them, "If you turn away from that which I have brought to you in reference to worship of Allah, Who is your Lord alone, without any partners, then the proof has been established against you. This is because I have conveyed the Message of Allah to you, which He has sent me with.''
(My Lord will make another people succeed you, ) This refers to a group of people who will worship Allah alone, without associating anything with Him. This also implies that the polytheists do not bother Allah and they do not harm Him in the least with their disbelief. To the contrary, their disbelief merely harms their own selves.
(Surely, my Lord is Guardian over all things.) This means that Allah is a Witness and Guardian over the statements of His servants and their actions. He will give them due recompense for their actions. If they do good deeds, He will reward them with good. If they do evil, He will punish them with evil.
(And when Our commandment came,) This is referring to the barren wind with which Allah destroyed them, to the very last of them. The mercy and kindness of Allah, the Exalted saved Hud and his followers from this terrible punishment.
g(Such were `Ad (people). They rejected the Ayat of their Lord) This means they disbelieved in the proofs and revelations (of Allah) and they disobeyed the Messengers of Allah. This is due to the fact that whoever disbelieves in a Prophet, then verily, he has disbelieved in all of the Prophets, peace be upon them. There is no difference between any one of them, in the sense that it is necessary to believe in all of them. Therefore, `Ad disbelieved in Hud and their disbelief was considered disbelief in all of the Messengers.
(and followed the command of every proud, obstinate.) This means that they abandoned following their rightly guided Messenger and they followed the command of every proud, obstinate person. Thus, they were followed in this life by a curse from Allah and His believing servants whenever they are mentioned. On the Day of Resurrection a call will be made against them in front of witnesses.
(Verily, `Ad disbelieved in their Lord.)
(61. And to Thamud (people We sent) their brother Salih. He said: "O my people! Worship Allah: you have no other god but Him. He brought you forth from the earth and settled you therein, then ask forgiveness of Him and turn to Him in repentance. Certainly, my Lord is Near (to all by His knowledge), Responsive.'')
Allah, the Exalted, says,
(And) This is an introduction to that which is implied, "Verily, We sent.''
(to Thamud) They were a group of people who were living in cities carved from the rocks, between Tabuk and Al-Madinah (in Arabia). They lived after the people of `Ad, so Allah sent to them,
(their brother Salih.) He (Salih) commanded them to worship Allah alone. He said to them,
(He brought you forth from the earth) This means: `He began your creation from it (the earth). From it He created your father, Adam.'
(and settled you therein,) This means: `He made you prosperous in the earth. You are settled in it and you treasure it.'
(then ask forgiveness) `This is in reference to your previous sins. '
(and turn to Him in repentance.) `This is in reference to the future.'
(Certainly, my Lord is Near (to all by His knowledge), Responsive.) This is similar to Allah's statement,
(And when My servants ask you concerning Me, then (answer them), I am indeed Near (to them by My knowledge). I respond to the invocations of the supplicant when he calls on Me.) (2:186)
(62. They said: "O Salih! You have been among us as a figure of good hope until this! Do you (now) forbid us the worship of what our fathers have worshipped But we are really in grave doubt as to that to which you invite us.'') (63. He said: "O my people! Tell me, if I have a clear proof from my Lord, and there has come to me a mercy from Him, who then can help me against Allah, if I were to disobey Him Then you increase me not but in loss.'')