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Period of Revelation

This Surah was revealed in the 5th year of the Prophet's residence at Makkah when his invitation was being resisted and opposed with denial and ridicule and false accusations, but persecution had not yet started.

Major Issues, Divine Laws and Guidance
  1. Surely the Day of Judgement shall come to pass, only the perverse persons turn away from this truth.
  2. The same angels who gave good news, of having a son, to Ibrahim annihilated the nation of homosexuals.
  3. There is a lesson in the stories of Fir'on, 'Ad, Thamud and people of Nuh.
  4. Allah, Who built the heavens and spread out the earth, has assigned the Prophet Muhammad to be a Warner for mankind.

This Surah emphasizes the Hereafter, and extends an invitation to Tawhid. The people are warned that refusal to accept the message of the Prophets and persistence in ignorance proved to be disastrous for those nations who adopted this attitude in the past.

People's different and conflicting beliefs about the end of human life are themselves an express proof that none of these beliefs and creeds is based on knowledge; everyone individually has formed an ideology on the basis of conjecture which has become his creed. Someone thought that there would be no life-after-death; someone believed in life- after-death, but in the form of the transmigration of souls; someone believed in the life hereafter and the meting out of reward and punishment, but invented different sorts of props and supports to escape retribution. About a question of such vital and fundamental importance, a wrong view of which renders man's whole life-work wasted ultimately ruining his future for ever, it would be a disastrous folly to build an ideology only on the basis of speculation and conjecture, and without knowledge. It would mean that man should remain involved in grave misunderstanding, his whole life passing in heedless, error, and after death, should suddenly meet with a situation for which he had made no preparation at all. There is only one way of forming the right opinion about such a question which is through the knowledge that the Prophet of Allah has conveyed.

The invitation to Tawhid is given in the following words: "Your Creator has not created you for the service of others, but for His own service. He is not like your false gods which receive sustenance from you and the godhead of which cannot function without your help. He is the God, Who is the Sustainer of all, Who does not stand in need of sustenance from anyone and Whose Godhead is functioning by His own power and might. Finally, the Prophet is instructed to ignore the rebels and keep on performing his mission of invitation and admonition, for it is useful and beneficial for the believers, although it may not be so for the other people. As for the wicked people who still persist in their rebellion, they should know that their predecessors who followed the same way of life, have already received their shares of the punishment.