who worship surely and regularly! O middling [worshippers], try to increase your worship! O disbelievers, perform your worship and all it entails connected to belief and the affirmation of divine unity! And O dissemblers, worship with true sincerity! Thus, the word “worship” here is like a shared word expressing many meanings. So ponder over this!
“Your Sustainer and Lord (Rabbakum);” that is, worship Him for He is the lord who raises and sustains you! It is encumbent on you to be a bondsman who worships and serves Him.
A Short Note: In “your Sustainer and Lord” is a subtle allusion to the contingency of the essences [of those addressed]; and in “has made the earth a resting-place for you” is a sign indicating the contingency of their attributes, and “who has created you and those who lived before you” hints at the createdness of their essences and attributes. Also, the following verses offer clear evidence that the essences of those addressed are contingent: “For Allah is indeed self-sufficient, whereas you stand in need [of Him];”(47:38) “That to your Lord is the final goal;”(53:42) “Now verily, these [false deities] are my enemies, [and that none is my helper] save the Lord and Sustainer of all the Worlds;”(26:77) “Say: Allah [sent it down], then leave them to plunge in vain discourse and trifling;”(6:91) “So flee unto Allah;”(51:50) “for verily in the remembrance of Allah do [men’s] hearts find their rest.”(13:28) Now think of further examples in the same way!
As for the phrase “who has created you (alladhī khalaqakum):” know that when Allah the Most High commands worship, which necessitates three things: firstly, the existence of the object of worship (ma‘būd); secondly, His unity; and thirdly, His fitness to be worshipped, He replies to these three implied questions by indicating three evidences of them: the evidences of [His] existence, which are of two sorts: those in the outer world (āfāqī) and those in man’s self (anfusī). The latter are also of two kinds: evidences in the self (nafsī) and those pertaining to origins (uṣūlī). [The Qur’an] alludes to evidences in the self (nafsī), which are the nearest and most evident, with the phrase “who has created you,” and to those pertaining to man’s origins with “and those [who lived] before you.”
As for the positioning of “so that you might remain conscious of Him: (la‘allakum tattaqūn),” know that since the Qur’an relates worship to [men’s] creation and that of their forefathers, it necessitates two points:
The First: [Human beings] being created with a propensity to worship and their having the ability to be conscious of and fear Allah (al-taqwā), so [much so] that anyone who observes such an ability would expect worship