بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَـنِ الرَّحِيمِ
In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful
Period of Revelation: Madinan
Order of Revelation: 100
Theme and Subject Matter:
Its having been placed after Surah al-Alaq and al-Qadr in the arrangement of the Qur’an is very meaningful. Surah al-Alaq contains the very first revelation, while Surah al-Qadr shows as to when it was revealed. In this Surah, it has been explained why it was necessary to send a Messenger along with this Book.
Before the Messenger ﷺ was sent, the people of Arabia were divided into two groups of people; the People of the Book and the idolaters. All of them lived in a state of disbelieve. The People of the Book had corrupted their scriptures by adding falsehood to it leading them to go astray whereas the idolaters were mushrikeen, they worshiped many gods. They were all living a life deviated from the ‘Right Path’.
It is then that Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala decided to send Muhammad ﷺ as His messenger who would call people to Allah’s Deen, teaching them to establish Salah, give Zakah and do righteous deeds. It was his duty to call people back to the original religion.
This Surah ends by pointing out clearly the followers of the earlier Books and the idolaters who would refuse to acknowledge this Messenger are the worst of creatures: their punishment is an everlasting Hell; and the people who would believe and act righteously, and would spend life in the world in awe of Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala, are the best of creatures: their reward is eternal Paradise wherein they will live forever. Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala became well-pleased with them and they became well-pleased with Allah.