The first five Ayat comprise the very first revelation brought by Angel Jibril-AS. Details may be seen in the relevant books. Briefly the Holy Prophet-SW would go to seclusion in Cave Hira to contemplate in the Divine Being to earnestly seek manifestation of the sublime Truth, until the Angel-AS came and asked him-SW to read. The Holy Prophet-SW said that he-SW could not read. The Angel-AS embraced him-SW thrice pressing hard insisting every time: ''Read" and these five Ayat were revealed. The Holy Prophet-SW was overawed by Allah-SWT's Words, laden with His-SWT ’s Refulgence.
Hadhrat Khadija-RAU a Literate Lady
The Holy Prophet-SW returned home and asked his-SW wife Khadija-RAU to cover him-SW with a blanket. When she heard what had happened, she comforted him-SW that persons of his-SW caliber are never harmed.
Visit to Varqa bin Naufal
She took the Holy Prophet-SW to her relative Varqa bin Naufal, a scholar of the earlier Divine Scriptures. This visit was not motivated by any doubts, but by the awe of the revelation which was confirmed by him. He also expressed his desire to be of any use to the Holy Prophet-SW but passed away a few days later.
Read in the Name of your-SW Rabb-SWT , the Creator, the Originator, Who-SWT created a beautiful human being from a clot. So read O' Prophet-SW, for your Rabb-SWT is indeed Munificent. He-SWT Who-SWT has taught by the pen and blessed man with the capacity to document his experiences for the successive generations. He-SWT made these odd lines a discipline, and the strongest means of education. He-SWT also endowed many other means of learning, for instance, a suckling needs no instructions how to suck the milk. The majority of these means are associated with the pen while some are through listening, and others through experience. And finally there are feelings of the Qalb, transmitted from one heart to another. By way of all these means, Allaah-SWT blessed man with knowledge, hitherto not in his reach. In other words, when humanity in general has been blessed with so much of knowledge by the Munificent Rabb-SWT , what He-SWT blessed His-SWT beloved Prophet-SW with, cannot possibly be imagined.
And whoever denies the Holy Prophet-SW is Allah-SWT's rebel, surely beguiled by his affluence or authority. Little does he realize that these are destined to end and everyone will ultimately have to return to His-SWT Court. And he is also forgetting realities like death and the subsequent quickening to face Him-SWT . And he dares impede others from Allaah-SWT ’s obedience!
The Antagonists of Islamic System
Though these Ayat were revealed when Abu Jahl impeded the Holy Prophet's-SW Salat in K'abah yet these have a general application. Abiding by Shari'ah and the Islamic System is an act of worship, and those who impede its course or oppose it ought to ponder. Had Abu Jahl been on the right path he would have sincerely advised others to obey Allaah-SWT and created a congenial environment instead of becoming an antagonist. But he not only refuted but also turned his face away from the Truth.
It did not cross his mind that Allaah-SWT was watching him and that he would soon be dragged by his forelocks, duly humiliated as a liar and a sinner in this world and utterly doomed in Akhirah. He was finally killed in the Battle of Badr and his head dragged to the Holy Prophet-SW .And what awaits him in the Akhirah is unimaginable. Such arrogants will be called upon to call out their helpers or consultants to see if they could be of any service to them and Allaah-SWT shall impose angels of Hell upon them. The Holy Prophet-SW need not be bothered with what they say and must ignore them completely. Rather he-SW must do Sajdah before his Rabb-SWT , a symbol of excellence in worship and obedience, to win yet higher grades.
Nearness Through Obligatory and Supererogatory Worship
Though every act of Shari'ah amounts to Sajdah yet priority goes to the obligatory acts, whether of worship or of mutual dealings. Conducting these affairs diligently and sincerely ensures elevation in grades. Following the obligatory are the supererogatory acts aimed at attaining His-SWT Pleasure and nearness in conformity to Shari'ah. If anyone neglects the obligatory aspects, his supererogatory worship is doubtful, for instance, Salat is neglected and engagement in Allah-SWT‘s Zikr throughout the night is claimed. This is ignorance.