Allah refuted the disbelievers' innovations of associating others with Allah in defiance of the religion of Ibrahim, the leader of the upright. Ibrahim always singled out Allah in worship, with sincerity, and he did not call upon others besides Allah. He did not commit Shirk, even for an instant. He disowned every other deity that was being worshipped instead of Allah and defied all his people in this regard. Prophet Ibrahim said,
﴿فَلَماَّ رَأَى الشَّمْسَ بَازِغَةً قَالَ هَـذَا رَبِّى هَـذَآ أَكْبَرُ فَلَمَّآ أَفَلَتْ قَالَ يقَوْمِ إِنِّى بَرِىءٌ مِّمَّا تُشْرِكُونَ - إِنِّى وَجَّهْتُ وَجْهِىَ لِلَّذِى فَطَرَ السَّمَـوَتِ وَالاٌّرْضَ حَنِيفاً وَمَآ أَنَاْ مِنَ الْمُشْرِكِينَ ﴾
(O my people! I am indeed free from all that you join as partners (in worship with Allah). Verily, I have turned my face towards Him Who has created the heavens and the earth Hanifa (Islamic Monotheism), and I am not of Al-Mushrikin.) (6:78-79). Also, Allah said,
﴿وَإِذْ قَالَ إِبْرَهِيمُ لاًّبِيهِ وَقَوْمِهِ إِنَّنِى بَرَآءٌ مِّمَّا تَعْبُدُونَ - إِلاَّ الَّذِى فَطَرَنِى فَإِنَّهُ سَيَهْدِينِ ﴾
(And (remember) when Ibrahim said to his father and his people: "Verily, I am innocent of what you worship. "Except Him (i.e. I worship none but Allah alone) Who did create me; and verily, He will guide me'') (43:26-27),
﴿وَمَا كَانَ اسْتِغْفَارُ إِبْرَهِيمَ لاًّبِيهِ إِلاَّ عَن مَّوْعِدَةٍ وَعَدَهَآ إِيَّاهُ فَلَمَّا تَبَيَّنَ لَهُ أَنَّهُ عَدُوٌّ لِلَّهِ تَبَرَّأَ مِنْهُ إِنَّ إِبْرَهِيمَ لأَوَّاهٌ حَلِيمٌ ﴾
(And Ibrahim's invoking (of Allah) for his father's forgiveness was only because of a promise he (Ibrahim) had made to him (his father). But when it became clear to him (Ibrahim) that he (his father) was an enemy of Allah, he dissociated himself from him. Verily, Ibrahim was Awwah (one who invokes Allah with humility, glorifies Him and remembers Him much) and was forbearing) (9:114), and,
﴿إِنَّ إِبْرَهِيمَ كَانَ أُمَّةً قَـنِتًا لِلَّهِ حَنِيفًا وَلَمْ يَكُ مِنَ الْمُشْرِكِينَ - شَاكِراً لانْعُمِهِ اجْتَبَـهُ وَهَدَاهُ إِلَى صِرَطٍ مُّسْتَقِيمٍ - وَءاتَيْنَـهُ فِى الْدُّنْيَا حَسَنَةً وَإِنَّهُ فِى الاٌّخِرَةِ لَمِنَ الصَّـلِحِينَ ﴾
(Verily, Ibrahim was an Ummah (a leader having all the good qualities, or a nation), obedient to Allah, Hanif (i.e. to worship none but Allah), and he was not one of those who were Al-Mushrikin. (He was) thankful for His (Allah's) favors. He (Allah) chose him (as an intimate friend) and guided him to a straight path. And We gave him good in this world, and in the Hereafter he shall be of the righteous.) (16:120-122).
This is why Allah said here,
﴿وَمَن يَرْغَبُ عَن مِّلَّةِ إِبْرَهِيمَ﴾
(And who turns away from the religion of Ibrahim), meaning, abandons his path, way and method
﴿إِلاَّ مَن سَفِهَ نَفْسَهُ﴾
(except him who fools himself) meaning, who commits injustice against himself by deviating from the truth, to wickedness. Such a person will be defying the path of he who was chosen in this life to be a true Imam, from the time he was young, until Allah chose him to be His Khalil, and who shall be among the successful in the Last Life. Is there anything more insane than deviating from this path and following the path of misguidance and deviation instead Is there more injustice than this Allah said,
﴿إِنَّ الشِّرْكَ لَظُلْمٌ عَظِيمٌ﴾
(Verily, joining others in worship with Allah is a great Zulm (wrong) indeed) (31:13).
Abu Al-`Aliyah and Qatadah said, "This Ayah (2:130) was revealed about the Jews who invented a practice that did not come from Allah and that defied the religion of Ibrahim.'' Allah's statement,
﴿مَا كَانَ إِبْرَهِيمُ يَهُودِيًّا وَلاَ نَصْرَانِيًّا وَلَكِن كَانَ حَنِيفًا مُّسْلِمًا وَمَا كَانَ مِنَ الْمُشْرِكِينَ - إِنَّ أَوْلَى النَّاسِ بِإِبْرَهِيمَ لَلَّذِينَ اتَّبَعُوهُ وَهَـذَا النَّبِىُّ وَالَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ وَاللَّهُ وَلِىُّ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ ﴾
(Ibrahim was neither a Jew nor a Christian, but he was a true Muslim Hanifa (to worship none but Allah alone) and he was not of Al-Mushrikin. Verily, among mankind who have the best claim to Ibrahim are those who followed him, and this Prophet (Muhammad ) and those who have believed (Muslims). And Allah is the Wali (Protector and Helper) of the believers.) (3:67-68), testifies to this fact.
Allah said next,
﴿إِذْ قَالَ لَهُ رَبُّهُ أَسْلِمْ قَالَ أَسْلَمْتُ لِرَبِّ الْعَـلَمِينَ ﴾
(When his Lord said to him, "Submit (i. e. be a Muslim)!'' He said, "I have submitted myself (as a Muslim) to the Lord of the `Alamin (mankind, Jinn and all that exists).'')
This Ayah indicates that Allah commanded Ibrahim to be sincere with Him and to abide and submit to Him; Ibrahim perfectly adhered to Allah's command. Allah's statement,
﴿وَوَصَّى بِهَآ إِبْرَهِيمُ بَنِيهِ وَيَعْقُوبُ﴾
(And this (submission to Allah, Islam) was enjoined by Ibrahim upon his sons and by Ya`qub) means, Ibrahim commanded his offspring to follow this religion, that is, Islam, for Allah. Or, the Ayah might be referring to Ibrahim's words,
﴿أَسْلَمْتُ لِرَبِّ الْعَـلَمِينَ﴾
(I have submitted myself (as a Muslim) to the Lord of the `Alamin (mankind, Jinn and all that exists)).
This means that these Prophets loved these words so much that they preserved them until the time of death and advised their children to adhere to them after them. Similarly, Allah said,
﴿وَجَعَلَهَا كَلِمَةً بَـقِيَةً فِى عَقِبِهِ﴾
(And he (Ibrahim) made it ﴿i.e. La ilaha illallah (none has the right to be worshipped but Allah alone)﴾ a Word lasting among his offspring, (true Monotheism)) (43:28).
It might be that Ibrahim advised his children, including Jacob, Isaac's son, who were present. It appears, and Allah knows best, that Isaac was endowed with Jacob, during the lifetime of Ibrahim and Sarah, for the good news includes both of them in Allah's statement,
﴿فَبَشَّرْنَـهَا بِإِسْحَـقَ وَمِن وَرَآءِ إِسْحَـقَ يَعْقُوبَ﴾
(But We gave her (Sarah) glad tidings of Ishaq (Isaac), and after Ishaq, of Ya`qub (Jacob)) (11:71).
Also, if Jacob was not alive then, there would be no use here in mentioning him specifically among Isaac's children. Also, Allah said in Surat Al-`Ankabut,
﴿وَوَهَبْنَا لَهُ إِسْحَـقَ وَيَعْقُوبَ وَجَعَلْنَا فِى ذُرِّيَّتِهِ النُّبُوَّةَ وَالْكِتَـبَ﴾
(And We bestowed on him (Ibrahim), Ishaq and Ya`qub, and We ordained among his offspring prophethood and the Book.) (29:27), and,
﴿وَوَهَبْنَا لَهُ إِسْحَـقَ وَيَعْقُوبَ نَافِلَةً﴾
(And We bestowed upon him Ishaq, and (a grandson) Ya`qub) (21:72), thus, indicating that this occurred during Ibrahim's lifetime. Also, Jacob built Bayt Al-Maqdis, as earlier books testified. The Two Sahihs recorded that Abu Dharr said, "I said, `O Messenger of Allah! Which Masjid was built first' He said, (Al-Masjid Al-Haram (Al-Ka`bah).) I said, `Then' He said, (Bayt Al- Maqdis.) I said, `How many years later' He said, (Forty years. )'' Further, the advice that Jacob gave to his children, which we will soon mention, testifies that Jacob was among those who received the advice mentioned in Ayat above (2:130-132).