(These Twain (the believers and disbelievers) are two opponents who contend concerning their Lord…) [22:19]. Abu 'Abd Allah Muhammad ibn Ibrahim al-Muzakki informed us> 'Abd al-Malik ibn al-Hasan ibn Yusuf> Yusuf ibn Ya'qub al-Qadi> 'Umar ibn Marzuq> Shu'bah> Abu Hashim> Abu Majlaz> Qays ibn 'Ubad who reported that he heard Abu Dharr say: “I swear by Allah that this verse (These Twain (the believers and disbelievers) are two opponents who contend concerning their Lord) was revealed about the following six: Hamzah, 'Ubaydah, 'Ali ibn Abi Talib, 'Utbah, Shaybah, and al-Walid ibn 'Utbah”. This was narrated by Bukhari from Hajjaj ibn Minhal from Hushaym from Abu Hashim. Abu Bakr ibn al-Harth informed us> Abu'l-Shaykh al-Hafiz> Muhammad ibn Sulayman> Hilal ibn Bishr> Yusuf ibn Ya'qub>> Sulayman al-Taymi> Abu Majlaz> Qays ibn 'Ubad> 'Ali who said: “The words of Allah (These Twain (the believers and disbelievers) are two opponents who contend concerning their Lord) up to (Taste the doom of burning) [22:22] was revealed about us and about our duels on the Day of Badr”. Said Ibn 'Abbas: “This refers to the people of the Book. The latter said to the believers: 'We have a better right to Allah than you; our Scripture is older than yours and our prophet came before your prophet'. The believers said: 'It is us who have a better right to Allah than you; we believe in Muhammad and in your prophet as we believe in all revealed Scriptures. You have recognized our prophet but refrained from believing in him. You disbelieved in him only because you envied him resentfully'. This was their issue of contention regarding their Lord. And so Allah, exalted is He, revealed this verse about them”. This opinion is also the view of Qatadah.
Asbab Al-Nuzul by Al-Wahidi , trans. Mokrane Guezzou