Allah says, `just as We sent revelation to the Prophets before you,'
(thus We have revealed to you a Qur'an in Arabic) meaning, plain, clear, and manifest
(that you may warn the Mother of the Towns), i.e., Makkah,
(and all around it,) means, all the lands, east and west. Makkah is called Umm Al-Qura (the Mother of the Towns) because it is nobler than all other lands, as indicated by much evidence that has been discussed elsewhere. Among the most concise and clear proofs of that is the report recorded by Imam Ahmad from `Abdullah bin `Adi bin Al-Hamra' Az-Zuhri, who heard the Messenger of Allah say, as he was standing in the market place of Makkah;
(By Allah, you are the best land of Allah, the most beloved land to Allah; were it not for the fact that I was driven out from you, I would never have left you.) This was also recorded by At-Tirmidhi, An-Nasa'i and Ibn Majah; At-Tirmidhi said, "Hasan Sahih. ''
(and warn (them) of the Day of Assembling) i.e., the Day of Resurrection, when Allah will assemble the first and the last in one plain.
(of which there is no doubt,) means, there is no doubt that it will happen and will most certainly come to pass.
(a party will be in Paradise and a party in the blazing Fire.) This is like the Ayah:
((And remember) the Day when He will gather you (all) on the Day of Gathering, --- that will be the Day of mutual loss and gain) (64:9). which means that the people of Paradise and the people of Hell will gain and lose, respectively. And it is like the Ayah:
(Indeed in that (there) is a sure lesson for those who fear the torment of the Hereafter. That is a Day whereon will be gathered together, and that is a Day when all (the dwellers of the heavens and the earth) will be present. And We delay it only for a term fixed. On the Day when it comes, no person shall speak except by His leave. Some among them will be wretched and (others) blessed.) (11:103-105) Imam Ahmad recorded that `Abdullah bin `Amr (may Allah be pleased with him) said, "The Messenger of Allah came out to us, holding two books in his hand. He said,
(Do you know what these two books are) We said, "We do not know unless you tell us, O Messenger of Allah.'' Concerning the book in his right hand, He said:
(This is a book from the Lord of the worlds, containing the names of the people of Paradise and of their fathers and tribes; all of them are detailed, down to the last one of them, and nothing will be added or taken away from it.) Then concerning the book in his left hand, he said:
(This is the book of the people of Hell, containing their names and the names of their fathers and tribes, all of them are detailed down to the last one of them, and nothing will be added or taken away from it.) The Companions of the Messenger of Allah said, "Why should we strive if it is something that is already cut and dried'' The Messenger of Allah said:
(Strive with your deeds as hard as you can for middle course or close to it, for the person who is destined for Paradise will die doing the deeds of the people of Paradise, regardless of what he did before, and the person who is destined for Hell will die doing the deeds of the people of Hell, regardless of what he did before.) Then he made a gesture with his fist and said,
(Your Lord has settled the matter of His servants) and he opened his right hand as if throwing something;
(A party in Paradise.) and he made a similar gesture with his left hand;
(And a party in the blazing Fire.)'' This was also recorded by At-Tirmidhi, and An-Nasa'i; At-Tirmidhi said, "Hasan Sahih Gharib.'' Imam Ahmad recorded that Abu Nadrah said, "One of the Companions of the Prophet, whose name was Abu Abdullah, was visited by some of his friends, and they found him weeping. They asked him, `What has caused you to weep Didn't the Messenger of Allah say to you,
(Trim your moustache and adhere to that practice until you meet me)' He said, `Yes, but I heard the Messenger of Allah say;
(Allah picked up a handful in His Right Hand and another in His other Hand, and said, "This is for this and this is for this, and I do not care.'') `And I do not know in which of the two handfuls I am.''' There are several Hadiths about Al-Qadr (the Divine Decree) in the books of Sahih, Sunan and Musnad. Including those narrated by `Ali, Ibn Mas`ud, `A'ishah and a large number of Companions, may Allah be pleased with them all.
(And if Allah had willed, He could have made them one nation,) means, either all following guidance or all following misguidance, but He made them all different, and He guides whomsoever He wills to the truth and He sends astray whomsoever He wills, and He has complete wisdom and perfect proof. Allah says:
(but He admits whom He wills to His mercy. And the wrongdoers will have neither a protector nor a helper.)
(9. Or have they taken protecting friends besides Him But Allah --- He Alone is the protector. And He Who gives life to the dead, and He is Able to do all things.) (10. And in whatsoever you differ, the decision thereof is with Allah. Such is Allah, my Lord in Whom I put my trust, and to Him I turn in repentance.) (11. The Creator of the heavens and the earth. He has made for you mates from yourselves, and for the cattle (also) mates. By this means He creates you. There is nothing like Him, and He is the All-Hearer, the All-Seer.) (12. To Him belong the keys of the heavens and the earth. He enlarges provision for whom He wills, and straitens. Verily, He is the All-Knower of everything.)
Here Allah denounces the idolaters for taking other gods instead of Allah, and declares that He is the True God, and it is not right to worship anyone except Him Alone. He is the One Who is able to bring the dead back to life and He is Able to do all things. Then He says:
(And in whatsoever you differ, the decision thereof is with Allah.) means, in whatever issue you differ. This is general in meaning and applies to all things.
(the decision thereof is with Allah.) means, He is the Judge of that, according to His Book and the Sunnah of His Prophet. This is like the Ayah:
((And) if you differ in anything amongst yourselves, refer it to Allah and His Messenger) (4:59).
(Such is Allah, my Lord) means, (He is) the Judge of all things.
(in Whom I put my trust, and to Him I turn in repentance.) means, `I refer all matters to Him.'
(The Creator of the heavens and the earth.) means, the Maker of them both and everything in between.
(He has made for you mates from yourselves,) means, of your own kind. As a blessing and a favor from Him, He has made your kind male and female.
(and for the cattle (also) mates.) means, and He has created for you eight pairs of cattle.
(By this means He creates you.) means, in this manner He creates you, male and female, generation after generation of men and cattle.
(There is nothing like Him,) means, there is nothing like the Creator of these pairs, for He is the Unique, the Self-Sufficient Master, Who has no peer or equal.
(He is the All-Hearer, the All-Seer.)
(To Him belong the keys of the heavens and the earth.) We have already discussed the interpretation of this phrase in Surat Az-Zumar (39:63), the conclusion of which is that He is the One Who is controlling and governing them.
(He expands provision for whom He wills, and straitens.) means, He gives plentiful provision to whomsoever He wills and He reduces it for whomsoever He wills, and He is perfectly Wise and Just.
(Verily, He is the All-Knower of everything.)
(13. He (Allah) has ordained for you the same religion which He ordained for Nuh, and that which We have revealed to you, and that which We ordained for Ibrahim, Musa and `Isa saying you should establish religion and make no divisions in it. Intolerable for the idolaters is that to which you call them. Allah chooses for Himself whom He wills, and guides unto Himself who turns to Him in repentance.) (14. And they divided not till after knowledge had come to them, through transgression between themselves. And had it not been for a Word that went forth before from your Lord for an appointed term, the matter would have been settled between them. And verily, those who were made to inherit the Scripture after them, are in grave doubt concerning it.)
Allah says to this Ummah:
(He (Allah) has ordained for you the same religion which He ordained for Nuh, and that which We have revealed to you,) Allah mentions the first Messenger who was sent after Adam, that is, Nuh, peace be upon them, and the last of them is Muhammad. Then He mentions those who came in between them who were the Messengers of strong will, namely Ibrahim, Musa and `Isa bin Maryam. This Ayah mentions all five, just as they are also mentioned in the Ayah in Surat Al-Ahzab, where Allah says:
(And (remember) when We took from the Prophets their covenant, and from you, and from Nuh, Ibrahim, Musa, and `Isa son of Maryam.) (33:7). The Message which all the Messengers brought was to worship Allah Alone, with no partner or associate, as Allah says:
(And We did not send any Messenger before you but We revealed to him (saying): None has the right to be worshipped but I, so worship Me.) (21:25). And according to a Hadith (the Prophet said):
(We Prophets are brothers and our religion is one.) In other words, the common bond between them is that Allah Alone is to be worshipped, with no partner or associate, even though their laws and ways may differ, as Allah says.
(To each among you, We have prescribed a law and a clear way) (5:48). Allah says here:
(saying you should establish religion and make no divisions in it.) meaning, Allah enjoined all the Prophets (peace and blessings of Allah be upon them all) to be as one and He forbade them to differ and be divided.
(Intolerable for the idolaters is that to which you call them.) means, `it is too much for them to bear, and they hate that to which you call them, O Muhammad, i.e., Tawhid.'
(Allah chooses for Himself whom He wills, and guides unto Himself who turns to Him in repentance.) means, He is the One Who decrees guidance for those who deserve it, and decrees misguidance for those who prefer it to the right path. Allah says here;
(And they divided not till after knowledge had come to them,) means, their opposition to the truth arose after it had come to them and proof had been established against them. Nothing made them resist in this manner except their transgression and stubbornness.
(And had it not been for a Word that went forth before from your Lord for an appointed term,) means, were it not for the fact that Allah had already decreed that He would delay the reckoning of His servants until the Day of Resurrection, the punishment would have been hastened for them in this world.
(And verily, those who were made to inherit the Scripture after them,) means, the later generation which came after the earlier generation which had rejected the truth.
(are in grave doubt concerning it.) means, they do not have any firm conviction in matters of religion; they merely imitate their forefathers, without any evidence or proof. So they are very confused and doubtful.
(15. So unto this then invite (people), and stand firm as you are commanded, and follow not their desires but say: "I believe in whatsoever Allah has sent down of the Book and I am commanded to do justice among you. Allah is our Lord and your Lord. For us our deeds and for you your deeds. There is no dispute between us and you. Allah will assemble us (all), and to Him is the final return.'')