This is a Madani chapter (revealed in Madinah). By most accounts of the companions, it was already four years in Madinah when this chapter came down.
So the Muslims have gone through a lot in these four years and one of the problems they’ve experienced is that overall becoming a problem in motivation. The iman is not what it used to be. And Allah notices that there are some weak elements in the Muslim community.
There are some who just became Muslims, they don’t realize what they’ve gotten themselves into.
There are some who are suffering from the disease of hypocrisy.
But Allah addressed them all of them together.
What’s beautiful about this chapter, is that even though it is Madani chapter, 6 verses of this chapter sound completely Makki.
Whatever is in the heavens and earth exalts Allah, and He is the Exalted in Might, the Wise. (Quran 57: 1)
This verse is introducing us to Allah.
You would think that the verses that introduce Allah would happen in Makki or Madani Quran?
It would happen in Makki Quran.
His is the dominion of the heavens and earth. He gives life and causes death, and He is over all things competent. (57: 2)
After the fourth year of hijrah, didn’t Muslims know this already?
These are verses that you would think that Allah would give to the disbelievers of Quraysh. They don’t think about the creation of Allah, the sky, the earth.
Muslims know this already. But Allah is making me and you think about it again.
So let’s start over.
Allah knows that we’re Muslims and He is still telling us this.
His is the dominion of the heavens and earth.
What is wrong with you? What happened to your tasbeeh (glorifying Allah).
He is ultimate authority
How come My authority is not enough that you don’t respect it?
The All Wise
Why don’t you trust that the things I’m telling you to do are good for you? Why don’t you have any confidence in My wisdom?
The kingdom of the skies and the earth belongs to Him.
Why are you afraid of your enemy? They have weapons, money, power in their hand… that will somehow harm you?
There is nothing in the skies and the earth that is outside of My kingdom. All of the battle between truth and falsehood is happening inside Allah’s kingdom. Why do you have to fear someone else?
Are you afraid of dying? He says:
He gives life. He gives death.
Why are you worried about life and death?
He will give and He will take because it’s not yours to keep. He gives you this opportunity and He will take it.
He is in control of everything.
He is the first and the last.
This has many interpretations, but at the personal level, the first priority, the first thought in your day should be what?
The last thing you will leave this world with, the last thing to do before you go to sleep is to think about your master.
What did I do for you my Master today?
Me, this insignificant creature, what did I do today for you?