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Usool Al-Hadeeth by Sh Yasir Qadhi Part 2

Posted by: ilmseeker | July 23, 2008


Fourth Proof: The verses in the Quran that prove to us that we must follow the Sunnah of the Prophet (pbuh). There are between 50 and 70 verses concerning following the Sunnah. We will categorize and break them down into 7 categories:

Type 1: Those verses in the Quran are those that tell the Muslims to believe in the Prophet (pbuh). Verses which are about belief in the Messenger, for example:

Say oh mankind, I am the messenger of Allah sent to all of you.
(Surah Al-Araf: 158 )

So therefore believe in Allah and His messenger.
(Surah Al-Araf: 158 )

What is the meaning of “Muhammadur Rasullah”? When Allah says have emaan in the Prophet (pbuh), what does it mean? It means that whatever the Prophet (pbuh) says, we must believe it. When the Prophet (pbuh) tells us to do something, if we have emaan that this man is the messenger of Allah, then that emaan will necessitate to do it and follow up what he says. And the more we obey the Prophet (pbuh), the more emaan we have. The less we obey the Prophet (pbuh) then the less emaan we have.

Type 2: The verses that describe the Prophet (pbuh) as the explainer of the Quran. The Prophet’s (pbuh) main and primary role was to explain the Quran. If Allah sent him to explain the Quran then it follows that we must obey and believe him in that explanation. Allah (swt) says:

We have revealed this remembrance that you may make clear to people what has been revealed to them. (Surah An-Nahl: 44)

Type 3: The verses that show Allah (swt) revealed something along with the Quran. Along with the Quran Allah (swt) revealed something. Allah (swt) mentions this something else as “hikmah” or wisdom. This shows us that there is more than the Quran, if someone were to say what is this hikmah? Then we would only be able to think of the Sunnah, the Sunnah is the only other thing other than the Quran that we have to follow.

Allah has revealed upon you the Kitaab (Quran) and the wisdom
(Surah An-Nisa: 113)

So the Prophet (pbuh) has received inspiration not only of the Quran but also of the Sunnah. Imam Ash-Shafiee said that the hikmah that has been referred to in these verses is the Sunnah of the Prophet (pbuh). The fact that Allah mentions that He has revealed something along with the Quran shows us that the Sunnah is part of Islam.

Type 4: The verses that explicitly and clearly mention that obedience to the Prophet (pbuh) is obligatory. There are at least 50 of these verses. Allah says:

مَّنْ يُطِعِ الرَّسُولَ فَقَدْ أَطَاعَ اللّهَ

Whoever obeys the Prophet has indeed obeyed Allah

If we obey the Prophet (pbuh) then we’re obeying Allah.

In at least 10 -15 verses Allah says:

أَطِيعُواْ اللّهَ وَالرَّسُولَ
Obey Allah and obey the Messenger

Allah (swt) says:

“Nay by your Lord, they do not believe until they make you (Muhammad) to be a judge amongst them. Then after you have judged they don’t find any constraint or difficulty by your judgment. And they submit totally to your decision.
(Surah An-Nisa: 65)

In this verse Allah negates emaan from everyone until we make the Prophet (pbuh) a judge in matters or problems. Then afterwards we should accept willingly and openly and we don’t have a problem with the judgment. If you have a feeling of discontent and you think the judgment is unfair then Allah is saying we don’t have emaan. This is the most explicit verse because Allah has said you don’t have emaan until we make the Prophet (pbuh) our judge. Whatever difficulty or situation arises we should go back to the Prophet (pbuh) and find out what he said, we should have no problems with what he said and we should follow it.

Type 5: The verses that mention obedience to the Prophet (pbuh) is in fact a sign of truly loving Allah (swt), if we love Allah (swt), then we must follow the Prophet (pbuh). Allah says in the Quran:

“Say, if you truly love Allah, follow me, Allah will love you.”

(Surah Al-Imraan: 31)

If we truly love Allah the Prophet (pbuh) says to follow him. If we claim that we love Allah then we must follow the Prophet (pbuh). If we follow the Prophet (pbuh) then Allah will love us. To follow the Sunnah will make Allah love us. This proves beyond a shadow of a doubt that the Sunnah is an integral part of Islam.

Type 6: The verses that show the status of the Prophet (pbuh) and the etiquette that he must be shown. Allah says:

“Oh you who believe, do not go forward beyond Allah and His Messenger.”

(Surah Hujraat: 1)

Ibn Abbas said this ayah means that we should not put our statement above their statements and we don’t put our understanding above their understanding. Whatever Allah and the Prophet (pbuh) have said, we must accept it without putting our own words and speech above it.

Allah says:

“Oh you believe! Do not raise your voice above the Prophet’s voice”

(Surah Hujraat: 2)

If we are not allowed to raise our voice above the Prophet’s then we are not allowed to raise our opinions above his. We are prohibited from speaking loudly to the Prophet (pbuh). When this verse was revealed some of the Sahaba would only speak in whispers, so much so that other people had trouble hearing them. If we are not allowed to raise our voices above the Prophet then what is the status of the person who raises their own intellect and desires above the Quran and Sunnah.

Type 7: These verses are miscellaneous verses which don’t fall into a specific category. For example, Allah says:

“Verily Oh Muhammad you guide them (mankind) to the straight path”
(Surah Muminoon: 73)

The Prophet (pbuh) has been described as the shining light, the guider, the one who takes out of darkness into the light, all of these descriptions show us that status of the Prophet (pbuh) and show us that obedience to him is obligatory.

Fifth Proof
: The hadeeth of the Prophet (pbuh) that mentions the importance of following his hadeeth. What did the Prophet say about his own Sunnah? Three points are:

1. The fact that the Prophet himself mentioned that he has been given something along with the Quran; this is the hikmah that Allah refers to. The Prophet says:

“Verily I have been given the Quran and something like it.”
(Sunan Abi Dawud)

This hadeeth means that the Sunnah is equivalent to the Quran in legal weight. The fact that he is telling us that he has been inspired more than the Quran, the Sunnah is also in inspiration from Allah in general.

2. The fact that it is obligatory to obey the Prophet (pbuh). The Prophet
said in an authentic hadeeth:
“It will soon happen that a person will be sitting and reclining on his couch (lazy and content) and he will say follow the Quran and whatever comes to you from the Quran is sufficient for you. Know that everything I make halaal it is if Allah has made halaal and everything that I make haraam it is if Allah has made it haraam.”
(Ahmed, Abi Dawud, Ibn Majah)

In other words the Prophet (pbuh) is describing the exact situation we’re living in today. This is a clear explicit proof that the Sunnah is equivalent to the Quran in its weight.

3. The fact that the Prophet (pbuh) commanded the Sahaba to preserve his Sunnah and he forbade them from lying about him. The Prophet (pbuh) said:

“May Allah brighten the face of someone who hears my hadeeth, memorizes it and then passes it on to someone else.”

The most narrated hadeeth and has the most chains. Out of all the hundreds and thousands of ahadeeth the most hadeeth that has the most chains is when the Prophet (pbuh) said:

“Whoever lies about me will find his place in the fire of hell.”

This hadeeth has over 70 or 80 chains and it is found in all the collections of ahadeeth ever written. It is of the miracles of Allah that He made this hadeeth the most widely narrated hadeeth to show us the dangers of fabricating ahadeeth about the Prophet (pbuh).

Sixth Proof: Common sense and a practical view point. A common sense tells us that we must follow the Sunnah. Allah says in the Quran:

وَأَقَامُواْ الصَّلاَةَ
“Establish the prayer”

Does Allah mention how many times we have to pray? Does Allah mention we have to pray the number of rakaat for each salah? Does Allah mention the different postures of salah and that we must recite Al-Fatiha? Nothing of this is mentioned in the Quran. It is not possible to follow the Quran except by turning to the Sunnah. Likewise Allah says in the Quran to give zakah, but no where in the Quran does it tell us how much to give or how often to give. We will not find in the Quran any chapter of fiqh except that we must go to the Sunnah in order for that chapter to be complete.

There is a group among our times which started in the Indian Subcontinent around 100 years ago. This group still exists to this day; they call themselves Parvesees after their founder. This group denies the Sunnah and they believe it is shirk to follow the Prophet (pbuh). These people describe the prayer as three times a day from a verse in Surah Israa. Secondly they stand up in prayer, recite Al-Fatiha, do ruku, sujood and say salaam. The only things that are mentioned in the Quran are the ruku and sujood. This group has been declared non-Muslim because when one denies the Sunnah then one goes out of the fold of Islam. This group exists in America; they don’t call themselves Muslims but the Submitters. They’re based in Tucson, AZ and their leader was Rashaad Khaalifah. Khaalifah in the 1980s propounded the 19 theory. He said that there is miraculous nature in the Quran having to do with the number of 19. Later he declared himself to be a prophet in America. Alhumdulillah, he was assasinated in his own home.

Seventh Proof: There is unanimous consensus; there is no known difference amongst the Muslims that we must follow the Prophet (pbuh). Even the extreme groups such as the Raafidah and Shia have their ideas of Sunnah (i.e. Usool al Kaafi), they believe to follow the Prophets and their Imaams. Also the Khawaarij did not deny the validity of the Sunnah even though they didn’t study it. None of the Muslims groups in the past ever denied the fact that we must obey the Prophet (pbuh).

Two of the main doubts the people have about the Sunnah:

1. The Quran is complete.
2. The Sunnah has not been preserved.

The Submitters and many modern and progressive Muslims say the hadeeth is not mentioned in the Quran and everything we need to know is in the Quran. They say the Quran is sufficient for us and they try to cast doubts about the preservation of the Sunnah. To say that we do not have to follow the Sunnah is kufr in and of itself. To say the Sunnah has not been preserved will lead us to kufr but is not kufr in and of itself. Most modernists will say the Sunnah has not been preserved.

To refute the first point, the above seven points should be sufficient. But specifically the Quran is sufficient in and of itself to deny these points. The Quran has told us that we must go to the Sunnah. The Quran describes itself as being sufficient but it tells us we must go to the Sunnah. We say that the Quran is complete and it has told us to go to the Sunnah, therefore we go to the Sunnah.

To refute the second the point, one can take the long detailed drawn out study of science of hadeeth. We start off by telling how the Sunnah was preserved and the books that were written. But this is not something that can be told quickly. The second method to refute, which is a shortcut is we say that the fact the Sunnah is a part of our religion necessitates that it will be preserved. The fact that the Sunnah is a part of our religion is sufficient proof that Allah will preserve it. Allah says:

“We have revealed the Message and We are going to protect it.”
(Surah Al-Hijr: 9)

Some ulema say that the meaning of zhikr here is Quran and Sunnah. But even if it only refers to the Quran, because of the fact that we need the Sunnah to understand the Quran this verse also implies that Allah will preserve the Sunnah. The fact that Allah (swt) tells us that we must follow the Sunnah proves that it will be preserved because how can Allah tell us to do something when we don’t have it. How can we follow the Sunnah and obey the Prophet if the Sunnah were not preserved, the fact that Allah tells us to follow the Sunnah proves that the Sunnah has been preserved.

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