in Islam, Christianity and Judaism
الشريعة في الإسلام والنصرانية واليهودية باللغة الإنجليزية
The Arabic text revised by
Dr. Abd Ar-Rahman bin Abd Al-Kareem Ash-Sheha
European Islamic Research Center (EIRC)
& Zeina Al-Abadla
Rigalos Konstantinos & Ahmed Al-Amir
In the name of Allah, Ar-Rahmân (the Most Beneficent), Ar-Raheem (the Most Merciful)
Praise be to Allah, the Lord of the Worlds, and may peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family and his companions.
Humans are one of God’s creations in this vast universe; an integral part of it. They have a specific role, and if they abandon that role which was assigned to them by the Holy Books that were revealed to them, an imbalance will occur to this universe. This is obvious since when humans did what they were forbidden to do, quitted what they were ordered to do, and responded to their desires and lusts, corruption appeared in the earth and sky, diseases that had never been known or appeared before at the previous generations started to spread; Wars that caused the destruction of crops and posterity proliferated, let alone the environmental problems such as the environmental pollution and the issue of global warming, which will turn the earth into an uninhabited universe if it continues to be the way it is.
All of that results in the messing of humans, ranging from nuclear tests, to the waste of energy and to factories that produce more than the humans need, just in order to satisfy their lusts and fulfill their desires even if that happens on the account of humiliating their brothers and sisters in humanity. They want to satiate themselves even if that happens on the account of the starving of others, to wear clothes even if that happens on the account of others to be nude, to have fun even if that happens on the account of the death of others. God Almighty has spoken the truth:
“Evil (diseases, lack of rain and plants, imbalance in people's lives, etc.) has appeared on land and sea because of what the hands of men have done (by oppression and evil deeds), that He (Allâh) may make them taste a part of that which they have done, in order that they may return (by repenting to Allâh, and begging His Pardon).”
God has informed humans that they were not been created vainly, and that they will not be neglected (i.e. without being accounted). Allah said:
“Did you think that We had created you in play (without any purpose), and that you would not be brought back to Us? * So Exalted is Allâh, the True King, none has the right to be worshipped but He, the Lord of the Supreme Throne!”
He has also showed humans that the purpose of their presence in this universe, a generation after another, is that they worship Allah alone and not associate partners with Him. Allah, Glory be to Him, is Free from the need of their worship, but He tests them in order for them to have a chance to prove which of them is best in deeds. Allah said:
“And I (Allâh) created not the jinn and mankind except that they should worship Me (Alone). * I seek not any provision from them (i.e. provision for themselves or for My creatures) nor do I ask that they should feed Me. * Verily, Allâh is Ar-Razzaq (the All-Provider), Owner of Power, Al-Mateen (the Most Strong).”
Allah has indicated the suitable energy their bodies will not live without, by saying:
“O you who believe! Eat of the lawful things that We have provided you with, and be grateful to Allâh, if it is indeed He Whom you worship.”
He has also indicated the energy their souls will not live without, as they will not rest assured without faith and they will not relax without the worship of their Creator, nor will they settle without applying the Sharia of Allah. Allay says:
“Those who believed, and whose hearts find rest in the remembrance of Allâh: verily, in the remembrance of Allâh do hearts find rest.”
In order for humans to achieve servitude to Allah Alone, He sent them the Prophets in order for them to follow their example, and He sent along with them the books of Sharia in order to guide them, as a lamp that would light their way and direct them to goodness, warn them against evilness and regulate their life affairs in order for them to use their bodies and souls for what they were originally created to do.
“Mankind were one community and Allâh sent Prophets with glad tidings and warnings, and with them He sent down the Scripture in truth to judge between people in matters wherein they differed. And only those to whom (the Scripture) was given differed concerning it after clear proofs had come to them through hatred, one to another. Then Allâh by His Leave guided those who believed to the truth of that wherein they differed. And Allâh guides whom He wills to the Straight Path.”
The last Prophet was Muhammad, peace be upon him, whom Allah made the last of the prophets, and with whom He completed His religion and who came with a religion that includes a universal divine Sharia that is comprehensive and suitable for every time and place; one that regulates people’s lives and makes them happy in this life and the Hereafter. Happy will be the one who follows it, and miserable will be the one who abandons it. Allah Almighty said:
“Verily, this Qur’ân guides to that which is most just and right and gives glad tidings to the believers, who work deeds of righteousness, that they shall have a great reward (Paradise). * And that those who believe not in the Hereafter, for them We have prepared a painful torment (Hell). * And man invokes (Allâh) for evil as he invokes (Allâh) for good and man is ever hasty [i.e., if he is angry with somebody, he invokes (saying): "O Allâh! Curse him" and that one should not do, but one should be patient].”
This clearly shows whom Allah guides and to what He guides them, so the Guidance includes endless nations and generations from every time and place. Ιt also includes every method and every path it guides them to, along with every good humans are guided to in every place and time. It guides to that which is most suitable in the world of conscience and feeling, by this simple and clear faith that has no complications or mysteries, that soothes the soul from the heaviness of illusion and superstition, and that liberates the human potentials for work and construction. It also connects the laws of the universe with the laws of human instinct for coordination, agreement and consistency. (Regularity and non-contradiction).
It also guides to that which is most suitable in the coordination between what is within man and what is in his appearance, his feelings and behavior, his faith and deeds, if they are all attached to the firm tie that is inseparable, then the man will look towards heaven while he is standing on earth, and the deeds will be considered as act of worship as long as the man does them according to the Islamic teachings, even if those deeds are an enjoyment of life.
It also guides to that which is most suitable in the world of worship by equalizing the commands and the ability, so that the commands would not burden a person beyond his ability or make him bored and despaired of fulfilling them, while they (the commands) should not be too lenient so that softness and recklessness would not be spread to one’s self. It should also not exceed the intent, moderation and tolerance limits.
Furthermore, it guides them to that which is most suitable in people’s relationships among each other: individuals and couples, governments and people, countries and races. Thus, it establishes these relationships based on firm principles (strong and fixed) that do not get affected by personal opinions or inclinations, and do not change depending on affection or hatred and loathing. Furthermore, they do not get distracted by interests or purposes. The principles that Allah Al-Khabîr (the All-Aware) and Al-‘Alîm (the All-Knowing) set for His creation, and He is the Best Knower of whom He created, and the Most Aware of what is best for them in every land and every generation, so He guides them to that which is most suitable concerning the regime, the financial system, the social system, and the international system that is decent for the human world.
It guides them to that which is most suitable in believing in the right creed, so they may know their real Creator and their real religion, giving good news to the believers that there is a great reward waiting for them in the Hereafter, and warning the unbelievers that there is a painful punishment waiting for them.
“Verily, this Qur’ân guides to that which is most just and right and gives glad tidings to the believers, who work deeds of righteousness, that they shall have a great reward (Paradise). * And that those who believe not in the Hereafter, for them We have prepared a painful torment (Hell).”
Therefore, this is His authentic ruling on deeds and penalties. Thus, faith and good deeds are what evaluates one, as there is no faith without good deeds and no good deeds without faith. The former is truncated (sectioned) and it doesn’t reach its completeness, and the latter is baseless, it has no base or pillar, and with the two of them together life carries on what is more appropriate; with the two of them together, Guidance is realized by this Quran.
As for those who are not guided by the Quran, they are left to human desires; the rushing human who is ignorant of what is good for him and what is bad, the hasty who doesn’t control his emotions even when they are bad for him.
“And man invokes (Allâh) for evil as he invokes (Allâh) for good and man is ever hasty.”
That is because he does not know the destinies of things nor their consequence. So he does an act while it is bad, and he rushes it without knowing that it is bad, or even knowing that, but he cannot control his emotions or himself. So how can this be compared with the quiet, peaceful fixed Quran guidance?
This is the Islamic Sharia which for its inclusion, internationality, righteousness, and ability to solve all the problems, has been testified by the fair people who are non-Muslims, and more specifically the Orientalists. They testified what is right when they told the truth, which they could not hide, and we are mentioning their words in order for them to be used as an argument against their people. Perhaps their words will find hearts that are free from hatred and dependency so they reach to the truth about this forgiving Sharia, and then they will be reassured.
William Montgomery Watt says: "The fact that the Quran has references to the Arabs does not mean that Islam is not a universal trend, or has a universal nature, or that the Islamic message that was addressed from the beginning to the people of Mecca and Medina is not universal." He also says: “The Quran is winning acceptance despite its language because it addresses human issues.” Furthermore, he says: “Islam has proved itself, by action, to be independent from the two ancient religions (Judaism and Christianity), and we truly say: ‘it did exceed them or actually surpass them, and it is even more exquisite!’”
The Islamic Sharia is entirely different from all forms of law. It is unique; it consists of divine commands that regulate the lives of every Muslim in all aspects. This is our religion and this is our Sharia that we hope all people will choose and follow, because it has not been revealed but to guide them and as a mercy for them, and we cite the words of Allah to every non-Muslim who reads this book:
“If you turn away (from Islam), He will exchange you for some other people and they will not be your likes (i.e. disobedient).”
Dr. Abd Ar-Rahman bin Abd Al-Kareem Al-Sheha
• Linguistic definition of the word “Sharia”
• Disinformation from the media at the word “Sharia”
• Objective of enacting laws
• Eternal law and the making of laws
1. Failure of man-made laws to eliminate crimes
2. Importance of the existence of divine law.
3. Man-made laws and the law of jungle
• Disorder of man-made laws and their instability
2. Selling drugs
3. Death penalty
• The absurd sanctions in the man-made laws
- The doctrine of human sacrifice in the human legislation.
• Crimes that were codified in the man-made laws
Linguistic definition of Sharia
The word ‘Sharia’ in the Arabic language means a law, a way or an approach. The Sharia of the jungle is the law that represents the survival of the fittest. The Sharia of the church are the regulated laws for the church and its circumstances. Sharia of Hammurabi are the laws that enacted by Hammurabi, the king of the old Babel kingdom. The Sharia of the Pharaohs are the laws enacted by the ancient Egyptians to regulate their state affairs.
However, in Judaism, Christianity and Islam, the word Sharia means the doctrines, rules, and laws God legislated for people in order to organize their worldly life affairs, guide them to the good paths and succeed in the Hereafter. Note that by the word Sharia of Judaism and Christianity, we mean the original Sharia God revealed on both of his prophets Moses and Jesus, peace be upon them, before people distorted it. These Sharias were replaced by the Islamic Sharia, which God protected from being changed or distorted.
“And We have sent down to you (O Muhammad) the Book (this Qur’ân) in truth, confirming the Scriptures (Books) that came before it and Muhaiminan (trustworthy in highness and a witness) over them (old Scriptures). So judge among them by what Allâh has revealed, and follow not their vain desires, diverging away from the truth that has come to you. To each among you, We have prescribed a law and a clear way. If Allâh had willed, He would have made you one nation, but that (He) may test you in what He has given you; so compete in good deeds. The return of you (all) is to Allâh; then He will inform you about that in which you used to differ.”
Disinformation from the media at the word “Sharia”
When translated to other languages, the word Sharia is translated to “law” which is its true and original meaning, but some Western media dedicated all of their efforts into ruining the picture of Islam and its tolerant Sharia by trying to deceit people and push them away from it, through altering the real meaning of the word ‘Islamic Sharia’. When reviewing some topics related to the Islamic Sharia, they don’t translate the word Sharia to the equivalent word in their language which is ‘law’, instead, they pronounce it as how it is pronounced in the Arabic Language, that is ‘Sharia’, and write it according to its phonemic transcription. Therefore, it is written in Latin letters, and spoken in the foreign language the same way it is pronounced in the Arabic Language.
SHARIA = LAW
SHARIA LAW = LAW LAW
Moreover, the reason why it is not translated as the ‘Islamic law’ is that the word ‘law’ refers to something that organizes and regulates people’s affairs. Accordingly, the misleading media tries to separate between the words ‘law’ and ‘Sharia’, and disassemble any connection between them, attempting to create an image in the mind of the listener that the word ‘Sharia’ represents customs of barbarism and savagery that can’t organize or regulate human affairs. On the other side, when they translate the Arabic phrase ‘Sharia of Moses’ for example, they translate it as the ‘laws of Moses’ and the ‘Sharia of the church’ they translate it as the ‘laws of the church’ and so on!
Furthermore, when doing a documentary work about the Islamic Sharia, they estrange their cameras from all the two billion Muslims around the world. They take their cameras in a long passing journey (cross, surpass, and pass) through oceans and continents until they reach Kandahar mountains where the poorest tribal groups live. These tribal groups are only a few thousands. They have nothing to feed on, and there is no chance of getting education, or even a chance of getting clean drinking water. Instead of filming their human suffering and encouraging people to offer their help, they incite people on them and represent them as the exclusive representative of Islam and their actions as what Islam is all about!
At the same time, they film Christians as a civilized nation with higher education and scientific progress attempting in this way to create a false image of how Muslims are undeveloped, stating that the reason for that under-development is the fact that they are following the teachings of the Islamic religion, and of how Christians are developed since they are following the teachings of their Christian religion!
The media forgot –deliberately- a very important issue, and this is that when one wants to make a comparison between the Muslim tribal groups who live in the Kandahar Mountains and any Christian group, then these tribal groups should be compared to the Christian tribes of gypsies that can be found all over Europe! Where many European countries have suffered from the attempts of trying to take these gypsies into houses due to the refusal of these tribes to be settled in one specific area, as they preferred to move from one place to another. These Christian tribes had suffered from major racism and a violation of many of their rights in their countries, and all of that violation has been ignored from the Media and they estrange their cameras away in order to hide all of this violation from the eyes of the world. If these Christian tribes were Muslims, then the Media would point their cameras on them to show what Islam is and that the teachings of the Islamic Sharia are what made them move from one place to another!
The same media forgot to film for us the Muslim scholars who live in Europe, America, Australia, Asia, and Africa; the scholars who lead many scientific, economic and political fields, in addition to the first Muslim scholars who lit the world with their knowledge in a period known in Europe as the middle ages or the dark ages, where all Europe was immersed in all aspects of scientific and cultural backwardness from the fourth to the fourteenth century. Where the church used to persecute everything that had to do with science or scientists.
The English Historian 'Edward Gibbon' described that era by saying:
"Thousand years of triumph of barbarism and religion."
The objective of enacting laws
The only objective of enacting laws and writing constitutions is to regulate people’s affairs whether they are social, economic or political etc. In addition to defining the individual’s rights and duties in the society, both towards themselves and towards the others, it focuses on defining the individual’s freedom and its limits as well, as the freedom of every individual is restricted, because it stops and ends at the other people’s rights. In other words, this means that we should not let the individual’s freedom violate others’ rights, otherwise there will be a violation. Therefore, every law sets disciplinary and punitive sanctions for every violator who violated any of the other’s rights.
According to the above, the measure of success or failure of any law depends on its ability to achieve the objective mentioned earlier, and on its containing of sanctions that guarantee its enforcement and the punishment of the violator, taking into consideration that the aim of sanctions should not be to hurt the culpable, but to achieve the following:
1. Correcting the mistake:
Just like in the compensatory sanctions, by paying a financial compensation or a financial penalty to the harmed person.
2. Guiding the culpable:
Rehabilitate him to be a better person who is welcomed in society.
3. Deter the culpable:
From committing the crime that he intends to do before he doing it, through the warning of punishment, or deterring him from committing his crime once again.
4. Deterring others:
From following the example of the culpable at his crime, after seeing the punishment he faced.
Eternal law and the making of laws.
Failure of man-made laws in the elimination of crime.
In our contemporary world, we often see many legal institutions, judicial commissions, faculty of laws, local and international parliaments, and consultative councils. Furthermore, we see armies of men of law from lawyers, judges, constitutional jurists, international arbitrators and others. Moreover, we see armies of police officers, and millions of prisoners and detainees. We also see many attempts to make laws that fulfill the objectives mentioned earlier, so were we able to make that law that could achieve the prevention of violating other’s rights?!! Or are we still living in a world where lots of countries are filled with crime?!! In other words, did the man-made laws succeed in providing a safe world or in eliminating the crimes and problems that are increasing day after day? Therefore, the world is in a persistent need for a law that can achieve the objectives mentioned earlier!!
The importance of the existence of divine law
Long time ago, there were not any legal institutions, judicial commissions, or supervisory entities to make and apply a law to regulate people’s matters! Therefore, either Allah (God) would reveal a divine law to regulate the human lives that do not require legislators to improve it or develop it, or the law of jungle would prevail and the strong would eat the weak.
Therefore, it was out of His Fairness and Mercy to reveal a fixed Sharia (law) to them whose fundamentals and fairness are constant and do not change with the change of time or place. For example, a crime is a crime, it will never be a virtue, the right is right, it will never be void, and everyone is equal in front of the laws of the Sharia. As for its rules, they were renewed from time to time through the prophets that Allah (God) sent to guide the people and show them Allah’s Sharia that regulated their lives. Like in the case of Jews after they lost and distorted the rules of their Sharia, Allah sent His prophet Jesus, peace be upon him, to renew these rules, and after the Christians lost and distorted their rules, Allah concluded His divine Sharia with Muhammad’s (ﷺ) message. Therefore, He sent with him a Sharia, which is valid for every time and place, and cannot be changed or replaced throughout the ages, as it is the final Sharia. Allah says:
“Then We have put you (O Muhammad) on a (plain) way of (Our) commandment [like the one which We commanded Our Messengers before you (i.e. legal ways and laws of the Islâmic Monotheism)]. So follow you that (Islâmic Monotheism and its laws), and follow not the desires of those who know not.”
From that, we can clearly see the arbitrage of Sharia as to the types of sanctions in relation to the types of crimes. Therefore, it based the severity of the punishment on the severity of the crime and its danger on society. A Sharia that is not subjected to whims and courtesies and that equates between all criminals, so it doesn’t exempt any person from the punishment due to his social status, power and authority or wealth. That is clear in the saying of the Prophet (ﷺ):
“Indeed what destroyed the people before you, was just that when a person of high rank among them committed a theft, they spared him; but if the same crime was done by a poor person they inflicted the prescribed punishment on him. I swear by Allah that if Fatimah, daughter of Muhammad should steal, I would have her hand cut off.”
The man-made laws and the law of jungle:
In reality, many man-made laws in our present time are simply another facet of the law of jungle, and that is because many of the elites (elected) in some of the parliaments and many of the chartered lawmakers are corrupt, with ambitions of power and money. Therefore, they enact laws that appear to be good from the outside, but from the inside all they want is to achieve their interests and serve their goals by exploiting the rest of the people, mainly the poor ones! For that, Allah revealed to us a wise and fair law that does not differentiate between the ruler and the ruled, the rich and the poor, the black and the white, nor among social classes. It is the law of justice that is far from whims, injustice and greed! Allah says:
“Do they then seek the judgement of (the days of) Ignorance? And who is better in judgement than Allâh for a people who have firm Faith.”
The disorder of man-made laws and their instability
The spectator of the history of law making and constitution writing finds that man-made laws are ever changing, and that there is no law that could stay unchanged for a long period. For example, something that was considered a crime at a certain period, in another it became a virtue, and vice versa. Another example, in 1850 and 1920, the swimsuits for women in USA was a long robe that covered the entire body, and if a woman back then wore what she wears nowadays, she would have been arrested and punished.
Just as the law changes over time, it also changes over place. For instance, in the European Union countries, the laws of each country within the Union differ from the others. Even in the United States, the laws are different in each state, and from this, it is clear that laws are subjected to the wishes and whims of politicians who impose them on people. Some examples are:
Which is self-murder by the help of another person, and it is divided in three categories:
1. Voluntary euthanasia: It is completed with the approval of the patient. It is legal in some European countries and in some American states.
2. Involuntary euthanasia: It is completed without the approval of the patient, just like the euthanasia of children that is allowed in certain circumstances in Holland according to Groningen Protocol.
3. Forced murder: Against the patient’s will.
The bottom-line is that there are supporters and opponents of euthanasia, and each group has their arguments and reasons which they believe in. In some countries it is considered legal while in others it is considered a crime.
There have been registered cases of premeditated murder, like the case of Dr. Nigel Cox, who injected his patient ‘Lillian Boyes’ with a lethal dose of potassium chloride causing her heart to stop. He claimed in his defense that he was trying to ease her rheumatic pains. At the court he was sentenced with one year suspended, and a year later, he obtained his license to practice medicine again as if nothing has happened.
Few European countries have made the selling and usage of drugs legal on conditions and certain amounts, while in other European countries it is completely forbidden to sell or use drugs. What is strange is that one of those countries has made it legal for its citizens only to use drugs, while it made it forbidden for the visitors like tourists and others to use drugs, with the purpose of eliminating “drug tourism” in its territory. This decision was refused by many cafe owners who sell drugs stating that it will ruin their trade and income.
Some European countries and American states forbid death penalty, whereas others are still legislating and applying it!
So: where is the fixed scale upon which we can measure and know what is a crime and what is integrity?! And what is good and what is bad?!
Summary: sensible people agree that right is fixed and cannot be changed over time or place, likewise with manners, virtues, vices and sins; they are all fixed and cannot be changed. As a virtue would never become a vice and a vice would never become a virtue!
Absurdity of sanctions in man-made laws:
Looking at some legislations and sanctions that were enacted throughout the ages such as the old Pharaonic, Chinese, Indian, Greek, Roman civilizations, or even the African tribes and the Indigenous’ legislations, we find that they were absurd. For example, the death penalty was given for very simple reasons, let alone the fact that the way of torturing the convict was done creatively. Sometimes, he was beheaded with the guillotine like what happened to the king of France, Louis XVI in 1793, and other times he was beheaded with an ax, and then his body was chopped into four parts like what happened to Sir Thomas Armstrong in 1684 in the United Kingdom. In other cases, they would remove the convict’s intestines and cut his limps while he was still alive, then they would remove his heart from his chest and cut his head off like what happened to Balthasar Gérard in 1584 in Holland. At times, the convict was slaughtered with a knife, other times by being crucified on a tree and burned alive like what used to happen in the Spanish and Portuguese inquisitions under the supervision of priests. Other times execution was achieved by throwing one alive to hungry lions in the Roman stadium, others by putting him alive in Hitler’s ovens, some other times by impalement (putting him on a stake or a spear), or by the electric chair like what happened to Lynda Lyon Block in 2002 in the United States of America. And sometimes by drowning like what happened to the supporters of the French revolution in 1793 France, or by crushing the convict’s head with a hammer or by putting heavy rocks on his chest like what happened to Giles Corey in 1692 in the United States of America, or by throwing one in boiled oil like what happened to Richard Rice in 1531 in the United Kingdom, and sometimes by suffocating him in the gas chamber, and other times by burring him alive like what happened to the Chinese civilians by the Japanese soldiers in Nanking Massacre during the Second World War. At other times execution was done by sawing the body from up till down, other times by hanging, then slaughtering and then cutting the convict’s head off with a knife like what happened to Jeremiah Brandreth in 1817, other times by dismemberment by fasting his 4 limbs with 4 horses each one of which grabbed and pulled one limb until his body been torn in 4 parts like what happened to Túpac Amaru II in 1781 in Peru by the Spanish colonialists, other times by slow slicing the convict like what happened to Joseph Marchand in 1835 in Vietnam, other times by shooting in the head, and by many more other horrid and absurd methods that got creative in torturing those sentenced to death during their execution according to man-made laws!
Therefore, the divine legislation is a legislation of mercy that doesn’t provide absurd punishments, and doesn’t leave us as a palatable bite to the whims and messes of the lawmakers or the governors and their absurd judgments. Even in relation to animals, the Islamic Sharia mentioned that we should be merciful and compassionate with them even when slaughtering them in order to eat them. As the Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, said:
“Verily Allah has prescribed Ihsan (kindness) for everything. So when you kill, you must make the killing in the best manner; when you slaughter (an animal), make your slaughter in the best manner. Let one of you sharpen his knife and give ease to his animal (in order to reduce his pain).”
The doctrine of human sacrifice in human legislation:
The people of Central America used to practice the doctrines of human sacrifice in the Aztec Empire, which continued to rule from the fourteenth century until the sixteenth century. It ruled the region that is today known as the state of Mexico, where the priests used to bring the victim and put him on a big rock. The priest would then gash the victim’s chest while he was alive, take off his heart while it was still pulsing, lifting it towards the sun to placate the god of sun named ‘Huitzilopochtli’ -Allah forbid- or to placate the god of rain named ‘Tlaloc’, or to placate the god of fire named ‘Huehueteotl,’ by making a religious festival during which they threw the victim alive into the fire and before he died they pulled him out of it, gash his chest and take off his heart.
One of the superstitions of that empire was that a god named ‘Xipe Totec’ had removed his skin in order to give humans the corn corp. Therefore, he asked the humans to give him a human skin to dress with instead of his skin that he had given to them. For that reason, the priests used to honor that god by stripping the victim’s skin off while he was alive so that they (i.e. the priests) would wear the skin of the victim for twenty days and after that they would throw it to the fire!
In Africa, there were similar examples, like the Annual Customs of Dahomey, which are known today by the republic of Benin in West Africa. They used to bring the captives and prisoners of war and slaughter them as part of the ceremony for this annual celebration, and in case the king died, they slaughtered thousands of prisoners, as in the year 1727 when they slaughtered 4.000 captives in just one day!
Furthermore, in the civilization of ancient China, slaves used to be buried alive when their master died, as in the year 621, when the ruler ‘Mu’ of Qin district died, and 177 of his slaves were buried alive with him.
In the twelfth century, the prisoners of war used to be sacrificed and presented as an offering for the god of slaves ‘Perun’ in the Slavic culture.
In the East Asia countries, where Buddhism is being spread, we can see recent images, ugly ones. As on the Chinese New Year, some Buddhists take a girl after asking the permission of her parents, they wash her and clean her up and then tie her hands from behind and stab her with a knife in her neck just like they would stab a pig. Then they put a bowl under her neck so the blood won’t come out of it. At last, they cut her body into pieces and give it to the poor people.
This is only a summary of those absurd legislations and beliefs that a sane mind cannot acknowledge.
Almost no civilization or country has been spared from those criminal legislations like the human sacrifice doctrine to placate a god with human blood. For those who want to read and seek more information, they can look into the history of the human sacrifice doctrine around the world to see how it was spread in America, Europe, Australia, Africa and Asia! Moreover, the Old Testament mentioned this habit and heinous crime and criticized it for its enormity, and made death by stoning its punishment, where the Canaanites used to offer their children as sacrifices to the god Molech, as it was reported in the book of Leviticus: (20:1-2):
(1 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, 2 Again, thou shalt say to the children of Israel, Whosoever he be of the children of Israel, or of the strangers that sojourn in Israel, that giveth any of his seed unto Molech; he shall surely be put to death: the people of the land shall stone him with stones.)
That was a habit for the Canaanites, to offer their children to the god Molech -Allah forbid-.
For this, it is a mercy from the Almighty Allah to His creation to reveal a divine Sharia that fights and confronts all of the absurd legislations that were founded in order to humiliate humans and sacrifice them, and they were practiced around the world! Allah says:
“Say (O Muhammad): "Come, I will recite what your Lord has prohibited you from: Join not anything in worship with Him; be good and dutiful to your parents; kill not your children because of poverty - We provide sustenance for you and for them; come not near to Al-Fawâhish (shameful sins, illegal sexual intercourse) whether committed openly or secretly; and kill not anyone whom Allâh has forbidden, except for a just cause (according to Islâmic law). This He has commanded you that you may understand.”
Allah the Almighty has spoken the truth about His Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, whom He sent with the religion of truth that includes everything that regulates the human conditions in this life and the Hereafter, and happy is the one who believes in Him and follows His Sharia:
“And We have sent you (O Muhammad) not but as a mercy for the ‘Âlamîn (mankind, jinn and all that exists).”
Ibn Abbas, said:
“Allah sent His Messenger ((ﷺ as a mercy to the whole world, to the believers and the disbelievers. As for the believer, Allah guided him through the Prophet ((ﷺ and entered him in the Paradise because he believed in the Prophet ((ﷺ and acted according to the Islamic Sharia which was revealed to the Prophet ((ﷺ from Allah. As for the disbeliever, Allah through the mission of the Prophet ((ﷺ, gave him a postponement of his punishment, giving him other opportunities to return to the straight path, and while before the coming of the Prophet ((ﷺ, the punishment of the unbelievers who denied their Prophet’s was immediate.”
Allah sent him to the whole world in order to call it to the worship of Allah alone without any partners, to annihilate and invalidate all the polytheistic habits and the absurd laws and barbaric traditions.
Crimes that were codified and legalized in the man-made laws:
There are a lot of crimes or actions that are almost crimes, legalized and codified in some of the man-made laws, such as: the abortion and the killing of the fetus! For those who do not know how a fetus is killed, they can look it up on the internet through abortions that are performed by senior specialized doctors along with the help of nurses who should supposedly be merciful towards the patient!
The astonishing thing is that this heinous crime is completed after the mother submits the application to the doctor by herself or along with the father in order to kill their own fetus!
And this happens for trivial reasons that show the level the human decadence has reached for not being ready to welcome the child because of their desire to enjoy traveling and freedom for a further period before indulging in the obligations and responsibilities of taking care of an infant baby, or because of other financial or social barriers!
This is widespread in many developed countries, but it is even worse in some of the poor countries of Asia and Africa, especially if the fetus is a girl, since she is considered to be an economic burden for the family, unlike a boy, who, in their opinion, constitutes a constructive and productive element of the family. Therefore, he carries some of the burden of his father and helps him in providing financial resources for the family. We saw pictures of fathers in some of the poor countries of East Asia killing their daughters alive just as the disbelievers of Makkah used to do before Islam. Allah the Almighty told their story of this heinous act and crime:
‘And when the news of (the birth of) a female (child) is brought to any of them, his face becomes dark, and he is filled with inward grief! * He hides himself from the people because of the evil of that whereof he has been informed. Shall he keep her with dishonor or bury her in the earth? Certainly, evil is their decision.’
This crime was codified in some old laws like the Roman law, whose IV table stated: “A dreadfully deformed child shall be quickly killed”. We note that this crime was as well widespread in the ancient Greek civilization, where the mother used to show the baby to the father after its birth, and if he accepted the baby then it would live, if not then the baby would be killed. One of the Roman papyrus which was discovered in the city of Bahnasa (previously known as ‘Oxyrhynchus’) in the Minya governorate in Egypt also indicated this, and it showed the development of that habit among the Romans, since that papyrus contained a speech from a husband to his wife that said in it: “if the newborn is a boy let him live, and if it is a girl kill her.”
As for the Islamic Sharia, it is a Sharia of kindness and mercy, as that heinous crime was prohibited. The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said:
“Allah has forbidden you: disobedience to your mothers, to bury your daughters alive (female infanticide), and to withhold (what you should give), or demand (what you do not deserve). And Allah dislikes idle talk, to ask too many questions (for things which will be of no benefit to one), and to waste your wealth.”
(Al-Bukhâri and Muslim)
It also mentioned the fetus’s rights while it is still in its mother’s womb. What is most important out of these rights is the right to live! Allah Almighty said:
“Kill not your children because of poverty - We provide sustenance for you and for them”
Also, it cancelled all forms of discrimination and distinctiveness when dealing with male and female children, as the Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said:
“Act equally between your children; Act equally between your children; Act equally between your children.”
The Islamic Sharia, the punishments and purposes of Islamic Sharia
• The Islamic Sharia
• Purposes of Islamic Sharia
1. Protecting the religion.
2. Protecting the self.
3. Protecting the mind.
4. Protecting the money.
5. Protecting the offspring.
• Hudûd (Punishments) in the Islamic Sharia.
• Demand of applying the Islamic Sharia to the non-Muslim countries.
1. Sharia courts in the non-Muslim countries.
2. Should the non-Muslim countries be required to apply the Islamic Sharia?
As we previously said, it is the laws that Allah the Almighty laid down and enacted in order to regulate people’s relationship with Allah the Almighty, their relationship with each other and their relationships with their zoological and environmental surroundings. Some of these laws regulate matters of worship, and some others regulate the economic, commercial and social transactions, and some others organize the fundamentals which the country is built on, and they also organize the role of the legislative authority, the judicial power, and the executive power.
Purposes of Islamic Sharia:
The purposes of Sharia are the goals that the Sharia came to accomplish, they are the complete definitions the Sharia pursued and for which the Sharia laid down the rules and punishments. Some of the examples of the Islamic Sharia purposes are:
1. Protecting the religion:
Protecting the religion is the most important purpose of the Islamic Sharia. Allah the Almighty said:
- And your Lord has decreed that you worship none but Him. And that you be dutiful to your parents. If one of them or both of them attain old age in your life, say not to them a word of disrespect, nor shout at them but address them in terms of honor.’’
The Sharia mentioned the great reward for those who help people protect their religion whether it is by teaching them the religion, as the Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said:
- The best among you is he who learns and teaches the Qur'an.”
Or by constructing mosques so people can learn their religion and worship Allah inside them, as the Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said:
“Whoever builds a mosque for the sake of Allah, even it is like a sparrow's nest or even smaller, Allah will build for him a house in Paradise.”
2. Protecting the self:
Allah the Almighty created the human soul and prohibited the assault on it, whether the assault is from the individual towards himself in order to destruct it, as Allah said:
- O you who believe! Eat not up your property among yourselves unjustly except it be a trade amongst you, by mutual consent. And do not kill yourselves (nor kill one another). Surely, Allâh is Most Merciful to you.”
Or when an individual assaults another soul whether this soul belongs to a believer or a disbeliever, as Allah said:
“And do not kill anyone whose killing Allâh has forbidden, except for a just cause.”
Whoever deliberately kills a soul gets retribution as an order from the judge. The parents of the murdered can forgive and abandon the retribution, as Allah the Almighty said:
“O you who believe! Al-Qisâs (the law of equality between crime and punishment - an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth) is prescribed for you in case of murder: the free for the free, the slave for the slave, and the female for the female (i.e. the killer should be killed and not someone else. As in the past when there were conflicts between two tribes and a man was killed, his tribe refused to kill the assassin, and wanted to kill two or three men from the other tribe, saying: ‘a man of us is equivalent to three of you and a slave of us is equivalent to a noble of you and a woman of us is equivalent to a man of you’). But if the killer is forgiven by his brother (i.e. By the head of the family of the killed against blood-money, and reported here as a brother as a reminder that they are brothers in Islam, not enemies), then he should demand the blood-money in a good manner (i.e. without harming the killer), and (the killer) should pay to him in good manner (without postponement or reduction). This is an alleviation and a mercy from your Lord. So after this whoever transgresses the limits (i.e. kills the killer after taking the blood-money), he shall have a painful torment.”
3. Protecting the mind:
Allah the Almighty differentiated the human from the animals by the bless of the mind, and enacted legislations to guard this bless for humans, so He prohibited whatever causes its damage, and whatever causes the absence of the mind (intoxication) like alcohol and other drugs that ruin the mind and harm it, as Allah the Almighty said:
- O you who believe! Intoxicants (all kinds of alcoholic drinks), and gambling, and Al-Ansâb (stone-altars at fixed places or graves, whereon sacrifices were slaughtered on certain occasions in the name of idols), and Al-Azlâm (arrows for seeking luck or decision) are an abomination of Satan’s handiwork. So avoid (strictly all) that (abomination) in order that you may be successful.’’
In Islam, it is called the mother of the wicked deeds for its great danger on both the individual himself and the society, as it is the head of evilness and the basis of every crime.
4. Protecting the money:
Money is the base of life. Allah the Almighty made it an essential instrument for guarding the life. Because of money, interests are completed, provisions like food, clothes, education and home, etc. are gradually provided.
Allah the Almighty has clarified the legitimate ways to earn money, the methods to increase it and the methods to spend it. Therefore, He prohibited every act that wrongfully wastes money and causes its loss and He prohibited the exploitation of people and the eating up of their properties by falsehood through usury, bribery, stealing, gambling or betting, as Allah the Almighty said:
“O you who believe! Eat not up your property among yourselves unjustly.”
He also prohibited spending money on what damages one’s self or another, or wasting it by spending it unnecessarily. He imposed, regarding money, rights for the relatives who are kindred, and for the needy people by charity and beneficence, as Allah the Almighty said:
“And give to the kinsman his due and to the needy and to the wayfarer. But spend not wastefully (your wealth) in the manner of a spendthrift. * Verily, the spendthrifts are brothers of the devils, and the Devil is ever ungrateful to his Lord.”
5. Protecting the offspring:
The Islamic Sharia forbade anything that could be cause of illegal mixing of lineage, like adultery, as Allah said:
“And come not near to unlawful sex. Verily, it is a Fâhishah (i.e. a great sin), and an evil way (that leads one to Hell unless Allâh forgives him).”
- Al-Isrâ’ 17:32)
It also prohibited whatever could be the reason for eliminating offspring or stopping it like buggery or lesbianism, as Allah the Almighty said:
“And of mankind there is he whose speech may please you (O Muhammad), in this worldly life, and he calls Allâh to witness as to that which is in his heart, yet he is the most quarrelsome of the opponents. * And when he turns away (from you, O Muhammad), his effort in the land is to make mischief therein and to destroy the crops and the cattle, and Allâh likes not mischief.”
Punishments were legislated in the Islamic Sharia in order to guard the laws Allah revealed to regulate the human’s lives. Ιn order to ensure that those laws are applied and respected by people, there should be a law that organizes disciplinary and punitive sanctions to whoever disobeys those laws, therefore, Allah has legislated the Hudūd (punishments), that is the Penal Code, since the Islamic Sharia did not state any punishment, but to protect a right. Non-Muslims are often confused between the definition of Hudūd (punishments) and the Islamic Sharia itself, thinking that the Islamic Sharia is only about punishments and disciplinary and punitive sanctions, such as cutting the hand of a burglar, killing a murderer, etc. This conception is false, as the Hudūd (sanctions) are imposed only against those who violate the laws of the Islamic Sharia in order to protect them and guarantee that they are not being violated. In addition, applying the sanctions on the violators will protect people’s lives, money, honor and minds, and will also guarantee the protection of the human entity, similar to the outer wall that protects the city (which is the Islamic Sharia) from the bandits that want to break in and assault the safe residents in it. Allah Almighty has spoken the truth:
- And there is (a saving of) life for you in Al-Qisâs (the Law of Equality in punishment), O men of understanding, that you may become pious.”
Note that the punishments are not something new in the Islamic Sharia, but Allah the Almighty ordered them in all the divine Sharias, as when Allah ordered the imposition of punishments in the Torah He revealed to Moses, peace be upon him. Allah the Almighty said:
- Verily, We did send down the Taurât (Torah) [to Mûsâ (Moses)], therein was guidance and light, by which the Prophets, who submitted themselves to Allâh’s Will, judged between the Jews. And the rabbis and the priests [too judged between the Jews by the Taurât (Torah) after those Prophets], for to them was entrusted the protection of Allâh’s Book, and they were witnesses thereto. Therefore, fear not men but fear Me (O Jews) and sell not My Verses for a miserable price. And whosoever does not judge by what Allâh has revealed, such are the Kâfirûn (i.e. disbelievers - of a lesser degree as they do not act on Allâh’s Laws). * And We ordained therein for them: "Life for life, eye for eye, nose for nose, ear for ear, tooth for tooth, and wounds equal for equal." But if anyone remits the retaliation by way of charity, it shall be for him an expiation. And whosoever does not judge by that which Allâh has revealed, such are the Zâlimûn (polytheists and wrong-doers - of a lesser degree).”
Allah also ordered the imposition of punishments in theBible revealed to Jesus, peace be upon him. Allah the Almighty said:
- And in their footsteps, We sent ‘Îsâ (Jesus), son of Maryam (Mary), confirming the Taurât (Torah) that had come before him, and We gave him the Injeel (Gospel), in which was guidance and light and confirmation of the Taurât (Torah) that had come before it, a guidance and an admonition for the pious. * Let the people of the Injeel (Gospel) judge by what Allâh has revealed therein. And whosoever does not judge by what Allâh has revealed (then) such (people) are the Fâsiqûn [disobedient to Allâh].”
- Al- Mâ’idah 5:46)
Who handles the execution of punishments?
The execution of the punishments on the criminal, is the responsibility of the Muslims’ ruler, or the one who represents him, while the individuals of the society don’t have the right to execute punishments by themselves on the criminal, as Islam is a religion of order, and not a religion of randomness or barbarism. As in the era of Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ that no one carried out punishments unless this was done under his permission. Allah the Almighty said:
- And so judge (you O Muhammad) among them by what Allâh has revealed and follow not their vain desires, but beware of them lest they turn you (O Muhammad) far away from some of that which Allâh has sent down to you. And if they turn away, then know that Allâh’s Will is to punish them for some sins of theirs. And truly, many people are Fâsiqûn (rebellious and disobedient to Allâh).”
- Al-Mâ’idah 5:49)
When can the ḥudūd (punishments) be dropped?
1. Retreating from confession of the crime:
The opinion of the majority of scholars (Abu Hanîfa, Ash-Shâfi‘ei and Ahmad( is that if someone confesses his guilt with his free will, and then before the execution of the punishment, he goes back at his confession, then the punishment is also cancelled. In case he doesn’t go back at his confession, but he escapes during the execution of the punishment, then no one should chase him, may he repent to Allah.
Mâ‘iz bin Mâlik–may Allah be pleased with him- was an orphan in the guardian of Hazzâl Al-Aslami –may Allah be pleased with him-. Mâ’iz sinned as he committed adultery with a female slave from the neighborhood, so Hazzâl told him to go and confess what he has done to the Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ, and after he confessed four times, the Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ ordered them to carry out the punishment on him, but when the punishment was being carried out, he ran away until Abd Allah bin Anis stopped him and then they carried it out. So when the Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ was informed of what happened, he said:
- Why did you not leave him to escape! May he repent and Allah accept his repentance. O Hazzâl if you would cover him up with your robe, it would be better than what you did (i.e. if you would tell him to repent to Allah and to conceal his sin, would be better than that you told him to come to confess his guilt).”
Al-Baji said: “The phrase ‘If you would cover him up with your robe’ means that Hazzâl should order Mâ‘iz to repent and conceal his sin, the mention of ‘robe’ was used for exaggeration.”
- udûd (punishments) are suspended by supposition. Ûmar ibn al-Khattâb –may Allah be pleased with him- said:
“To suspend the legal punishments because of doubt, is more beloved to me than applying them by suspicions.”
Therefore, for whoever steals money thinking that it is his or he has right on it, the punishment is suspended.
If the criminals repent before his arrest from the authorities, the punishment is suspended, but if the repentance comes after his arrest from the authorities then it is not suspended, as Allah the Almighty said:
“Except for those who repent before they fall into your power: in that case, know that Allah is Ghafûr (Oft-forgiving), Rahîm (Most Merciful).”
The intended repentance here, which suspends punishment before the criminal is arrested is the repentance related to bandits (highwaymen who rode horses and attacked with violence the travellers at their road to kill them or to steal their money and women); this is the consensus of scholars. As for the rest of the hudûd (punishments), like adultery and stealing, there are two opinions. The first opinion: hudûd are suspended by repentance before the criminal is arrested, and the second opinion: that repentance before the criminal is arrested doesn’t suspend the punishment. Regarding the repentance for the slander (defamation against one woman at her chastity), the scholars agreed that the punishment is not suspended whether it is before his arrest or after. This matter has more details, and whoever wants to seek out more information should get back to the books of Islamic jurisprudence.
4. Retreating from testimony:
Retreating of witnesses from their testimony after the ruling and before executing it, is a suspension of the punishment for the criminal.
If the same crime (such as theft) is repeated several times before the authority catches the criminal and to applies the punishment to him, then after his arrest the punishment will be applied only once for those several times of stealing he committed as long they are the same type of crime.
Conditions of applying the punishment:
1. Ability to take responsibility for the acts (reason and puberty):
Punishment cannot be carried out on the child, the crazy or the mentally deranged, as the Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him, said:
“The pen has been lifted from three (i.e. their sins are not recorded): From the mentally insane until he comes back to his senses or recovers, from the sleeping person until he awakens, from the child until he reaches puberty.”
2. Choice and non-coercion:
Allah the Almighty said:
“Whoever disbelieved in Allah after his belief, except him who is forced thereto and whose heart is at rest with Faith; but such as open their breasts to disbelief, on them is wrath from Allah, and theirs will be a great torment.”
3. Health and ability:
As the punishment cannot be carried out on the sick or the one who has a weak body except after they are healthy.
- . Awareness of the prohibition.
Desirability of covering the Muslim:
Whoever witnesses a Muslim committing a sin, then he can choose between testifying for the Sake of Allah or covering up his Muslim brother. The latter is better and there are more details in the books of Islamic jurisprudence for whoever wants to seek more information, as the Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said:
“Whoever covers (the sin or faults of) a Muslim, Allah will cover him (his sin or faults) in this world and in the Hereafter.”
The misconception of cruelty of punishments in Islam:
The Western media coverage transmits that the punishments set by Islam for some crimes (death penalty for the killer, cutting burglar’s hand) are harsh, brutal and savage and they are not suitable for our time!
The answer to this misconception:
Everyone agrees that these crimes (killing, burglary) have a big damage on the society and harm the society very badly, and that they must be fought and confronted through the imposition of sanctions. As for the disagreement, it lies on the type of sanctions! Everyone can ask himself: which are more effective and successful in eliminating the crime and decreasing it, the sanctions set by Islam, or the sanctions set by humans which did nothing but helping the crime to grow and spread more and more?
• Reasonably, every sanction needs to be a bit harsh in order to deter the criminals; otherwise, its validity is lost.
• Quitting the application of the punishment because of its ruthlessness, would be unfair to the society, because how then would the individual feel safe on himself, his money and honor? As carrying out punishment is a mercy for the society and even for the criminal himself.
The relation between the Islamic Sharia and the man-made laws:
The main rule in Islamic Sharia is that everything is permissible, as Allah the Almighty said:
“See you not (O men) that Allâh has subjected for you whatsoever is in the heavens and whatsoever is in the earth, and has completed and perfected His Graces upon you, (both) apparent (i.e. Islâmic Monotheism, and the lawful pleasures of this world, including health, good looks, etc.) and hidden [i.e. One’s Faith in Allâh (of Islâmic Monotheism), knowledge, wisdom, guidance for doing righteous deeds, and also the pleasures and delights of the Hereafter in Paradise]?”
Except for what a clear text in the Sharia prohibits, as the Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said:
“‘What is lawful is that which Allah has permitted in His Book, and what is unlawful is that which Allah has forbidden. What He remained silent about is what is pardoned, so accept from Allah forgiveness, as Allah is not forgetful.’ Then he recited this verse: ‘And your Lord is never forgetful’ (Maryam 19:64).”
Therefore, the Islamic Sharia didn’t prohibit the man-made laws that regulate the life of humans, but it permitted them as long as they don’t conflict with it, like Maritime Law or Labor Law, etc. Instead, it prohibited the laws that codify crimes or evil deeds that have a negative and visible impact on human’s mental, financial, social, moral, or health aspect. In other words, the prohibition is made for the interest of human himself, since Allah is free of the need of His creations, their sins won’t harm Him, and their obedience won’t benefit Him. Allah the Almighty said:
“Say (O Muhammad): "(But) the things that my Lord has indeed forbidden are Al-Fawâhish (great evil sins and every kind of unlawful sexual intercourse) whether committed openly or secretly, sins (of all kinds), unrighteous oppression, joining partners (in worship) with Allâh for which He has given no authority, and saying things about Allâh of which you have no knowledge."
Demand of applying the Islamic Sharia in non-Islamic countries
Courts of Islamic Sharia in non-Muslim countries:
There are media campaigns and press reports that criticize and denounce the presence of councils or courts for the Islamic Sharia in some western non-Muslim countries, even though those countries allowed the Muslims to have such councils and legalized them. The truth is that those courts are not actual courts in the conventional legal sense, but they are councils that help Muslims in marriage, divorce, inheritance matters and others. For example: if someone kills someone else, these councils will not carry out the punishment on him, instead, the police will take him to the ordinary law courts in that country. These media campaigns and press reports want to frighten the citizens in that country against these councils, so they portray them as an invasion of their country, which is ridiculous, meaningless and false speech that is based on ignorance if not hatred towards the Islam and the Muslims. They want to make the people think that the sanctions mentioned in the Islamic Sharia are applied inside these councils away from the police’s authority! While in fact, those councils are exactly the same as the ‘Personal status law for non-Muslims’ which exist in Muslim countries! As the tolerant Islamic Sharia allowed the non-Muslims who live in Muslim countries to be judged based on their own legislations in many matters like marriage, divorce and others, and didn’t impose on them the Islamic laws applied on Muslims in those matters, unless they want the Islamic courts to judge between them according to the Islamic laws. Even the acts that the Islamic Sharia prohibits and condemns are not prohibited for non-Muslims, like for example drinking alcohol and eating pork. That it is because they don’t believe that eating pork and drinking alcohol is prohibited, though these acts were originally prohibited in their doctrine (in their Holy Bible), and there are many proofs of that.
One example of the maliciousness of those media campaigns and press reports, which have political agenda, is that of a presenter on a show on a channel who asked the Muslims who live in his country: “Which come first in your opinion, the Islamic law or the law of this country?” The Muslims spontaneously answered: ‘‘the Islamic law first’’ and this is a very normal answer, because the question itself is meaningless and indicates racism and hatred on the part of the presenter of the show. Because through his answer, the Muslim meant that the Word of Allah comes before the word of humans, and he did not mean that he does not respect the law of the country! Besides, the Islamic law orders him not to kill, steal, or cheat, and this is the same thing the man-made laws order, so there is no contradiction. What the Muslim meant by his answer is that if the man-made law in this non-Muslim country permit having a mistress, drinking alcohol, having abortion or eating pork then he will not follow these legitimate acts, and he will follow the orders of Allah, so he will not drink, have a mistress or kill his fetus by abortion. Therefore, he didn’t mean by his answer that he will violate the law of that country. As for the sanctions, such as the sanction of burglary, or murder, the Muslim will not have the prescribed punishment that the Islamic Sharia would apply on him. This is because of the absence of conditions of applying punishments, since the punishments in Sharia are done by the order of the Muslim ruler or his representative, such as a Muslim judge, and since the Muslim lives in that country according to its regulations and laws, and the Muslim has to respect and to not violate his contracts and charters, too, as long they don’t order him to do something which Allah has forbidden. Note that we are here talking about a Muslim who lives in a non-Muslim country, and not a Muslim country!
The Muslim who lives in a non-Muslim country has to respect and act according to the laws of that country as long as they don’t order him to disobey Allah the Almighty, because if they do, then he has to leave that country that doesn’t respect the freedom of religion and the personal rights. For example, if these laws order a Muslim woman to take off her hijab, then she has to leave immediately so that she can save herself from these absurd laws, and it is Not permissible for her to resist the authorities with violence and so. But if the laws of that country contradict with the rights of the Muslim citizen without ordering him to do something that Allah has forbidden, then he has the right to confront these laws with the peaceful ways through parliaments, press or through any peaceful means in order to show his objection! For example, if the law doesn’t permit constructing a mosque so that Muslims can perform their prayers, or if the law doesn’t permit Muslims to have polygamy, while it is allowed to have girlfriends instead of wives, then in this case a Muslim needs to turn to the judiciary or the legislature like the parliament or to the press so that he can gain his religious rights that Allah the Almighty imposed on him like praying, or what He permitted him like polygamy.
Should the non-Muslim countries be required to apply the Islamic Sharia?
There are some Muslim emigrants or new Muslims in some western countries who carry black flags with the two declarations of faith and signs that say for example: “Sharia for England”. So is this act right or wrong?
In order to find out the answer to this, we have to take into consideration the followings:
• First of all, these people didn’t introduce the Islamic Sharia in the right way for the non-Muslim citizens of that country. Instead, they demanded from them to apply it immediately, while these Muslims know that all what the non-Muslim citizens have in their mind about the Islamic Sharia are its sanctions, like the cutting off the hand of the burglar and others. So, how can it be expected that these citizens would accept the idea of applying the Sharia on them? As by this act, these Muslims are not introducing the Sharia to the non-Muslim citizens, they are making them scared of it!
• These Muslim people are mostly confused between the definition of Sharia and the Islamic religion, as their aim for that act is to invite people to embrace Islam, but through the way they followed, people understood that they wanted to apply the Islamic laws on them, or even that they want to apply the prescribed sanctions of the Islamic Sharia on them.
• The Islamic Sharia is the Sharia of the Muslim country, so non-Muslim countries should not be required to apply them. The Islamic history since the era of the Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ and the righteous caliphs has not mentioned that anyone of them had demanded from the non-Muslim countries to apply the Sharia of Muslims! Moreover, how could a country that doesn’t embrace Islam and most of its citizens are Christians or Jews and is ruled by a Christian or Jewish ruler, apply a Sharia that isn’t its own!
• The demand for the Islamic Sharia to be applied as laws must be expressed within legal frameworks. For example: this demand should be expressed inside the parliament because that is the only place specialized in the endorsement of laws. If it was expressed through lifting banners in the streets it would provoke the citizens and make them angry, and the effect would be the opposite and would cause damage to the Dawah (efforts of introducing Islam to non-Muslims) itself.
• Islamic law and the man-made law and achievement of the objective.
• Sanction of the burglar, cutting off the hand or imprisonment.
• Sanction of the burglar in the Bible.
• Self-defense in the Islamic Sharia.
• Self-defense in the Bible.
• Self-defense in the man-made law.
The Islamic law and the man-made law and achievement of the objective
All Penal Laws were not enacted but to achieve two main goals:
• Deterring: by deterring the mistaken from going back to his mistake, and deterring people from following his example of doing the same mistake.
• Mercy towards the individual and the society: the mercy towards the individual is achieved by deterring him from committing something that violates others’ rights, and in this way the punishment is not carried out upon him.
Mercy is completed towards the society by protecting the rights of the people from anyone who wants to violate them! Here arises a question: which one is more deterring and at the same time more merciful towards people, the Islamic law or the man-made law?! Let’s take some examples, such as the crime of burglary and the sanction of the burglar in the Islamic law and the man-made law respectively, to see which one is more efficient in achieving the aforementioned objective!
Sanction of the burglar, cutting off the hand (palm) or imprisonment for many years
First, we need to know that sanctions are not a virtue or something that is good, because if they were so, they would not have been called ‘sanctions’ and they would have lost their main role, which is deterring. Therefore, when we compare the sanction of the burglar between cutting off the hand and imprisonment, we actually compare between two bad things, and that is because both of them are actually ‘sanctions’, but we choose the “best-worst” two and the least harmful ones.
If we look at it from a rational and reasonable perspective, and as an aspiring approach for the future, and away from the emotional perspective, it is clear that the sanction of cutting the hand is more deterring than imprisonment and more effective in eliminating this crime, because when the burglar knows that his hand will be cut off, then it does not make sense to commit the crime, so in this way his hand will be safe, and also people’s money and properties will be safe. As for the sanction of imprisonment, even though it is a sanction, but it doesn’t deter the burglar from committing the crime of burglary as it is a time-bound sanction for a specific time. After that the burglar is released and he will commit more and more burglaries, due to his underestimation of this sanction! Allah the Almighty said:
“As for the male thief and the female thief, cut off (from the wrist joint) their (right) hands as a recompense for that which they committed, a punishment by way of example from Allah. And Allah is ‘Azîz (All-Powerful), Hakîm (All-Wise).”
When Allah says “a punishment from Allah”, it is clear that it is from Allah, and not from the creation. His creation should obey Him, because He knows better than them regarding their affairs and what is better for them in this world. Although the sanction of cutting the hand of the burglar off is more deterring for him than imprisonment, it is also more merciful to him and to the whole society as well! That is because by deterring the burglar from committing the crime, safety is spread among people, and in this way they live in a secure society where their hearts are in peace and no one fears for their properties and money. At the same time, it is also more merciful to the burglar himself because it saves him from the damages and the vicious disadvantages of imprisonment, as it is known that prison communities are communities that gather all kinds of criminals who committed all kinds of crimes. These damages and these disadvantages of imprisonment destroy the criminal himself and the society as a whole.
Harms of prisons:
1. Increasing criminality of the criminal:
One of the disadvantages of prison is holding the mistaken, no matter how small his mistake is, in a criminal environment where he learns all arts and kinds of crimes. This is because prison is like a university, where criminals exchange experiences, as the beginner criminal meets high profile criminals, and in this way he learns from them other criminal methods that are more dangerous than his crime which led him to jail. Thus the beginner criminal after his release, will come back to the society as a high profile criminal who has become even more dangerous for the society than before. Another point is that inside jail the criminals make friendships between themselves that last after they are out of prison, thus new criminal networks are formed, networks that include a killer and a drug dealer, along with a pharmacist, a computer programmer and a nuclear scientist. Nothing has gathered them except that they all went to prison to spend some jail time because of different crimes in volume and kind! This dangerous matter regarding the sanction of imprisonment made many lawmakers create the theory of ‘separating prisoners inside prisons’, but of course, this theory failed from the first moments due to the impossibility of applying it in real life. This is because isolating the prisoners would cause them psychological problems, aside from its heavy financial cost that will take lot of money from the good taxpaying citizens in order to build big prisons that are equipped with the facilities needed to provide this isolation between prisoners!
2. Slow death for the criminal, psychologically and spiritually:
Jail time destroys the mental state, and the spiritual life of the prisoner is completely ends just when he enters the prison, as he gets locked inside a cage like a dangerous animal and in complete isolation from the rest of the society outside. After he is done with jail time, he returns to the society more isolated and more dangerous because it has become more difficult for him to adapt to the civilized civil society. He also returns to the society with many psychological problems that can harm the society!
3. Slow death for the criminal economically:
Jail time ruins the economic life of the prisoners and cause it to fall apart immediately after entering prison. If the prisoner is an employee, then he will get discharged from his job. If he has a business or he is a businessman then his business will collapse and his work will be lost, which will lead to the breakdown of the economic life of his family and of all the people who are financially dependent on him, as his employees will lose their jobs and that in return will affect their families and the society as a whole, by causing an economic damage, while they did nothing wrong.
4. Slow death for the criminal socially:
Jail time ends the social life of the prisoner immediately once he enters the jail. What social life can be there for a prisoner who be imprisoned and isolated away from his wife, children, relatives and friends?!
5. Collective punishment for the whole family of the prisoner:
The family of the imprisoned will face psychological and social torment due to his imprisonment away from them. A wife who had her husband taken away from her, a mother whose child is kept away from her and these young children who were deprived of their own father without being guilty at all! How is it possible for a prisoner to take care about the psychological, financial, sexual and social needs of his wife? How can he raise his children and give them his compassion and care which they need? How can he look after his mother and father if they are elderly or ill? Actually, his imprisonment is a prison to all of them! And this is in case the prisoner is a man, but if the prisoner is a woman with infants, then who can take care of them, feed them and watch over their needs? What cruel hearts are these that could separate a mother from her small children and put them in one of the state institutions to take care of them? What care will that institution offer to children whose mother was taken away from them? Yes, it will offer them food, drink, and clothes, but it will never offer them sympathy, tenderness, warmth of the motherhood and good upbringing! And with no doubt this will create a new generation full of complicated psychological and social issues with negative effects that will appear in the future, and the society will not endure that!
6. Slow death for the criminal politically:
Jail time is a slow death or even a quick one for the criminal, who actually could be innocent of the charges, as in one of the developed countries, where a charge of financial corruption was fabricated for a supreme political oppositionist of that country. Many developed countries described that charge as invalid and that was due to political reasons to completely remove this oppositionist, who was very influential to his audience, from the political scene. Of course, his government had two choices: either to assassinate him and have him killed, or to assassinate him politically by imprisoning and isolating him from the society and his audience!
7. Exhausting the state budget and the income of good taxpaying citizens with huge financial burdens:
The costs of building prisons, their maintenance, their guarding, the salaries of the employees like officers and soldiers, let alone the costs of having them armed, the costs of cars used to move prisoners from the jail to the court and vice versa, the costs of movement of the officers from their homes to their work and the costs of feeding and staying of prisoners inside the prisons. All these costs are endured by the honorable citizen who actually has been robbed before! That is because the government increases the taxes of the citizen’s income so that it can bear the expenses of prisoners. In other words, the burglar has stolen from the citizen before he enters the jail, and now he is stealing from him again after he entered jail, but in an indirect way! Through this, the honorable citizen might become a burglar himself because of all this pressure coming from the taxes imposed on him, since instead of spending his money on improving his children’s education and his living conditions, he is forced to spend it on the feeding and staying of the burglar who stole from him before! On the other hand, if the money the country spends on prisoners, their services and the salaries of the officers and employees who work inside prisons, could be spent on improving the conditions of low-income people, then there would be no thieves in the society! Furthermore, the man-made laws created through the sanction of “imprisonment” an army of prisoners, an army of officers and soldiers to guard them, and it made both armies a consumed energy of society instead of making them a productive energy that helps in the growth of society!
These are some of the resultant disadvantages of applying the penalty of imprisonment. Therefore, if a burglar was offered to choose between being punished by having one of his hands cut off or by being imprisoned for several years, may he would choose to have his one hand cut rather than having his life fall apart socially, financially, psychologically, mentally and even politically! The same thing applies to the aforementioned political oppositionist in case he was offered the same deal; he would choose having his one hand cut instead of being imprisoned, thus, the punishment of cutting off his one hand would be a mercy to him and a torture for those who fabricated the charge against him, simply because, he would not disappear from the political scene and he will keep fighting against their financial and moral corruption!!
As a lawyer and an activist in the field of human rights, I invite the organizations of human rights and the United Nations to take a firm stand against that hideous and destructive punishment, which is the imprisonment of the burglar!
The actual applying of the sanction of ‘cutting the hand off’:
Sheikh Saleh Al-fawzân, may Allah protect him, mentioned in one of his lectures that during the last ten years, he only heard of two or three cases of cutting the hand off in Saudi Arabia. Of course, if we compare between this percentage and the thousands who are put in prison on a yearly basis in many developed countries, then we will see how the sanction of cutting one hand is more merciful to the burglar, and to the whole society. Because it kept the safety of society and of the burglar as well, by deterring him from committing a burglary, and in this way, no punishment will be imposed on him.
Conditions of cutting the hand off:
It is not like some people imagines it, that once someone steals, the punishment of cutting his hand off will be immediately applied, as carrying out punishment is not meant to harm him because he stole money, but to stop him from frightening the safe people and break into their homes and steal from them. Also, the punishment is not applied on every thief but in very few cases, and in order to apply the punishment of cutting the hand off, certain conditions need to be fulfilled. These are:
1. Breaking the safe:
The term ‘safe’ here means whatever the people use to save their money or products in, such as a safe box, ware house, their homes and what is like them. Simply, the scholars agreed that Just stealing does not require the sanction of cutting off the hand, unless there is a breaking of the safe. For example, when the burglar breaks the locks and enters, or breaks the door or the window, or makes a hole in its roof or wall, or puts his hand in a pocket of someone else to take what is in it, and so on.
2. Taking the stolen money out of the safe:
If the burglar is caught inside the safe before he gets away with what he stole, his hand will not be cut off, but he will be punished with another sanction according to what the judge says. This is a mercy and pushing away the suspicion, as the owner of the safe just by seeing someone inside his safe place he may think that he wants to steal from him, while that person might enter the safe place such as a warehouse or a shop for another purpose, other than stealing.
3. If the robbed demands his money:
As if he does not do so then the cutting of the hand would not apply, as the Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said:
“Pardon matters among yourselves that may deserve a Hadd punishment (i.e. If you want to pardon them then do it before you come to me or to the ruler or to the judge), for whatever is raised to me as a case, then the Hadd punishment becomes binding.”
Sahih Abi Dawûd
When Safwân bin Umayya caught a thief stealing from him, he took him to the Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ, then he wanted to forgive the thief. The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said:
“Why didn’t you do it before bringing him to me?”
Sahih Abi Dawûd
4. What is stolen needs to reach a prescribed figure of money:
If it is less than that, then the cutting of the hand should not be applied.
5. Robbery is to be proven by the testimony of two just men or by the confession of the burglar twice.
6. The thief has taken the stolen secretly:
If he doesn’t take it in secret, then the cutting of the hand should not be applied. For example, if he steals money by oppression in front of people’s eyes or takes it forcibly, then his hand will not be cut off, because the money owner could call the police or ask for help. Also if the thief steals the money out of betrayal, then his hand will not be cut off, for example, if he was entrusted to keep something by borrowing it or by keeping it as a deposit but instead he took it and pretended it was lost or denied having it. And the reason for that is that he already had the safe, so he was permitted to have access to it, and the Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said:
“There is no cutting of the hand for the traitor, or the thief who steals money by oppression in front of people’s eyes or takes it forcibly, nor the thief who steals unsaved money at inattention of the owner (like if the owner has put money on the table to pay for something, and then the thief sneak to the money).”
The Messenger of Allah was ((ﷺ asked regarding the dates which are still hanging on the palm tree, and he said:
"If a needy person eats some dates, but without taking a supply away in his garment, there is nothing on him, but he who takes away some of it he should be fined twice the value and punished. And he who steals any of it (the dates) after it has been put in the place where it is going to be dried (i.e. the warehouse), and it amounts to the price of a shield, he must have his hand cut off."
Sahih Abi Dawûd
Through this narration, we find out that the punishment of cutting the hand off is the ultimate punishment for stealing, and that it is preceded by other punishments like fines and others.
7. The burglar needs to be sane and adult:
As this punishment, doesn’t apply on the children and the insane because they are not considered capable of bearing the responsibility of their acts yet.
8. The burglar has stolen with his free will:
There is no cutting off the hand for the one who is forced by others to do so, as he is excused.
9. To have knowledge of the prohibition:
As there is no cutting for the one who is ignorant of the stealing prohibition, and this is different from the man-made laws which state: “inadmissibility of excuse due to ignorance”. Since if someone commits a crime and does not know that it is a crime, the man-made laws will apply the punishment on him and will not accept his excuse and his ignorance of not knowing that it is a crime. Many travelers, who visit foreign countries for tourism, work or studying, fall into this trap because of their ignorance of the laws of that country.
10. The burglar was sure while stealing that he has no right over this money:
As Hudûd (punishments) are suspended by doubt, for example, if someone steals something, of which he has some rights. If a father steals money from his son then his hand will not be cut off, and the same thing applies to the grandmothers and grandfathers if they steal from their grandchildren, also if a son steals money from his father, his hand will not be cut off, because usually the son has the ability or the permission to access his father’s money. Also if a husband or wife steals from each other, their hands will not be cut off. If a Muslim steals from the public treasury, his hand will not be cut off, because every Muslim has a right in the public treasury. If a lender steals money from his debtor provided that the debtor denies the debt or is a dilatory debtor, then his hand will not be cut off and he must not take more than his money. Also, if someone steals out of necessity, to save himself from destruction, for example if someone steals out of severe hunger or thirst, then he will not be punished nor has his hand cut off, but this applies as long as the amount he stole equals the amount that could save him from his severe hunger and thirst.
11. The stealer did not retreat his confession of stealing:
If the proof of stealing was his confession, and he retreats it before his hand is cut off, the punishment is cancelled because taking back his confession creates suspicion.
Someone might wonder why should the hand of burglar who stole a specific amount of money that is not so big, be cut off, whilst the hand of the embezzler who embezzled a huge amount of money should not be cut off?
The answer to that:
Answering this question, ibn Al-Qayim –may Allah be merciful to him- said: “This is from Allah’s wisdom. Regarding the burglar, he steals the people after they have taken their enough security standards, and they cannot do anything more than this to prevent him from stealing, because he has broken the locks, doors, roofs and windows, and people cannot be more cautious than that. Therefore, if his punishment was not to have his hand cut off, then burglary would spread over the society, people would steal each other, feeling the safety would disappear from the society, the damage would increase and the disaster would become more crucial. As for the thief who snatches (like the one who snatches and runs away), or the robber who steals money by oppression in front of people’s eyes and takes it forcibly, his hand will not be cut off, because the people could stop him or even testify against him in front of the judge, and regarding the embezzler, also his hand will not be cut off, because he steals the money at inattention of the owner, and this means that the owner didn’t take his enough safety standards to prevent anyone from embezzling his money.”
Method of cutting:
There is no dispute among scholars that gentleness and kindness should be taken into consideration when carrying out punishment, so the stealer should be driven to the place of cutting gently, he shouldn’t be treated roughly, nor be insulted nor be humiliated, as the Messenger of Allah said:
“Do not be helpers to Satan against your (Muslim) brother.”
As-Silsilah As-Sahih 1638
The ruler should also pick the right time for the cutting, so he should avoid the severe cold and heat. Punishment shouldn’t be carried out on the stealer while he is suffering from a non-chronic disease, it shouldn’t as well be carried out on pregnant women, on the women who has natal bleeding or on anyone whose cutting the hand off will cause his death.
After he arrives at the place of cutting he sits, a sharp knife is then put on the articulation of his palm (his wrist), and they strongly hit on it to be cut in one attempt, and if there is a quicker way then it should be applied.
Someone may say: I saw a scene of a stealer whose hand was cut off by one of the Islamic groups in an Arabic country which is in war. It was an inappropriate scene, as they hit his hand with a cold sword –meaning a not sharp one- several times until his hand was cut off, and they were happy with that saying “Allah Akbar -Allah is the Almighty.”
The answer to that:
This is an individual act and it is against the teachings of the Sharia on this matter, as in the Islamic Sharia, a hand should not be cut off in this way, and their act indicates ignorance of its teachings and it ruins the image of the forgiving Islamic Sharia! They as well violated the teachings of the Sharia from these points:
1. Hudûd (punishments) are not carried out during wars:
As the Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said:
“No hand should be cut off during wars.”
Ibn Al-Qayim said:
“Even though this is a punishment prescribed by Allah, the Prophet ((ﷺ explained to us that it shouldn’t be carried out during wars, because it could then lead to something that is worse than when suspending it or postponing it, as it could lead the stealer to join the other side who fight against the Muslim people, and that is out of his anger, and this is also explained in the statement of ‘Umar, Abu Ad-Dardâ’, Hudhâifa and others.”
2. One should not be happy when the punishment is carried out on the guilty:
The Prophet ((ﷺ used to hate and forbid that someone be happy when the punishment is carried out, but carrying it out on the guilty is an obligation to obey Allah and to comply with His command. Abd Allah ibn Mas‘ûd said:
“I remember the first man whose hand was cut off by the order of the prophet ((ﷺ, a burglar was brought and he ordered to cut off his hand, and it was as if the face of the Messenger of Allah showed sorrow, so they said: ‘O Messenger of Allah, you disliked his hand to be cut off!’ He said: ‘Sure I disliked that, why not? Do not be helpers to Satan against your (Muslim) brother. If a case arose which requires a punishment in front of the judge, then he must carry out that punishment. Allah is Forgiving and He loves forgiveness, (let them pardon and forgive. Do you not love that Allah should forgive you? And Allah is Ghafûr (Oft-Forgiving), Rahîm (Most Merciful)) (An-Nûr 24:22).’.”
This is the burglar’s punishment in the Islamic Sharia, which as we saw is more efficient if we look at it from a rational, reasoning and future perspective, and more useful in helping protecting the society. Now, let’s look at the punishment of stealing in the other religions.
Punishment of stealing in the Bible:
1) Stoning and burning of the stealer and his whole family:
Joshua (7:1-26): “1 But the children of Israel committed a trespass in the accursed thing: for Achan took of the accursed thing: and the anger of the Lord was kindled against the children of Israel. ….. 10 And the Lord said unto Joshua, Get thee up; wherefore liest thou thus upon thy face? 11 Israel hath sinned, and they have also transgressed my covenant which I commanded them: for they have even taken of the accursed thing, and have also stolen, and dissembled also, and they have put it even among their own stuff. 12 Therefore the children of Israel could not stand before their enemies, but turned their backs before their enemies, because they were accursed: neither will I be with you any more, except ye destroy the accursed from among you. ….. 19 And Joshua said unto Achan, My son, give, I pray thee, glory to the Lord God of Israel, and make confession unto Him; and tell me now what thou hast done; hide it not from me. 20 And Achan answered Joshua, and said, Indeed I have sinned against the Lord God of Israel, and thus and thus have I done: 21 When I saw among the spoils a goodly Babylonish garment, and two hundred shekels of silver, and a wedge of gold of fifty shekels weight, then I coveted them, and took them; and, behold, they are hid in the earth in the midst of my tent, and the silver under it. 22 So Joshua sent messengers, and they ran unto the tent; and, behold, it was hid in his tent, and the silver under it. 23 And they took them out of the midst of the tent, and brought them unto Joshua, and unto all the children of Israel, and laid them out before the Lord. 24 And Joshua, and all Israel with him, took Achan the son of Zerah, and the silver, and the garment, and the wedge of gold, and his sons, and his daughters, and his oxen, and his asses, and his sheep, and his tent, and all that he had: and they brought them unto the valley of Achor. 25 And Joshua said, Why hast thou troubled us? the Lord shall trouble thee this day. And all Israel stoned him with stones, and BURNED THEM with fire, after they had stoned them with stones. 26 And they raised over him a great heap of stones unto this day. So the Lord turned from the fierceness of His anger. Wherefore the name of that place was called, The valley of Achor, unto this day.”
2) Crucifixion to death:
Gospel according to Matthew (27:37-38): “37 And set up over his head his accusation written, ‘This is Jesus the king of the Jews’. 38 Then were there two thieves crucified with him, one on the right hand, and another on the left.”
Deuteronomy (24:7): “7 If a man be found stealing any of his brothers of the children of Israel, and he deal with him as a slave, or sell him; then that thief shall die: so you shall put away the evil from the midst of you.”
4) Slavery and thrall:
Exodus (22:1-3): “1 If a man shall steal an ox, or a sheep, and kill it, or sell it; he shall restore five oxen for an ox, and four sheep for a sheep. 2 If a thief be found breaking up, and be smitten that he die, there shall no blood be shed for him. 3 If the sun be risen upon him, there shall be blood shed for him; for he should make full restitution; if he have nothing, then he shall be sold for his theft.”
In Islam, every guilty person is held accountable for his crime and no one else bears his guilt or is punished instead of him. Allah the Almighty said:
“No bearer of burdens shall bear the burden of another. Then to your Lord is your return, so He will tell you that wherein you have been differing."
Resistance against the attacker in the Islamic Sharia and self-defense
Self-defense in Islamic Sharia:
If someone attacks another person, his money, his self, his honor or over power him wanting his money or to kill him, then this person and the other people are allowed to repel or stop the aggression by the needed reasonable force that can stop it. The one who defends himself, if it is possible, should start with the lighter way or force to stop the attacker, and then he can gradually increase the force until he achieves his target. Therefore, if he could stop the attacker by speech then there is no need to hit him, and if hitting him is required there is no need to use a stick. If he could stop him by cutting an organ then he is forbidden to kill him, and if killing is the only way the defender can resort to, then it is permissible and there is no blame on him. If the defender can run away then he should do it, because he is obliged to rescue himself in the easiest and simplest way possible. Allah the Almighty said:
“Then whoever transgresses the prohibition against you, you transgress likewise against him. And fear Allâh, and know that Allâh is with the pious.”
Conditions of self-defense:
1. That there would indeed be an attack.
2. That the attack would be immediate: So if the attack is done by threatening that something will be done in the future, then there is no need for defending as there is no defending before attacking. But if the attacker pointed something at him, as a gun for example, and threatened him with murder, then he has the right to stop and repel him.
3. Presenting evidence: that proves that he was attacked by the attacker as just saying it will not be accepted, because if it were then it would cause bloodshed with the excuse of self-defense.
4. Gradation during the self-defense: The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said to the man asking him:
“‘O Messenger of Allah, if someone comes to steal my money?’ He said: ‘Urge him by Allah.’ He said: ‘What if he persists?’ He said: ‘Urge him by Allah.’ He said: ‘What if he persists?’ He said: ‘Urge him by Allah.’ He said: ‘What if he persists?’ He said: ‘Then fight. If you are killed you will be in Paradise, and if you kill him, he will be in the Fire.’.”
Self-defense in the Bible:
Exodus (22:2): “2 If a thief be found breaking up, and be smitten that he die, there shall no blood be shed for him.”
What is worth mentioning is that the accredited Greek translation is written in a different way than the English translation, as it says: “2 If a thief is found stealing, then he is executed at his place, and the one who killed him isn’t responsible of his killing.”
(Αν ο κλέφτης συλληφθεί επ’ αυτοφόρω να κλέβει, θα εκτελείται επί τόπου, κι εκείνος που θα τον σκοτώσει δεν θα φέρει ευθύνη για το φόνο του.)
Self-defense in the man-made laws:
We previously saw the level of contradiction in the man-made laws in defining what is the crime, and what is the right. In addition to that, we saw the confusion in determination of the suitable and unified punishment that should be applied in every country and that will help maintain security and deter the criminals. This confusion and differences are also observed in the field of self-defense against burglary, as there are laws that stand in favor of the criminal on the victim’s account, and there are laws that stand in favor of the victim on the criminal’s account. For example, in the United States of America, they apply a “Stand your ground” law, which allows homeowners to use lethal force once they feel they are under the threat of burglary. This law caused severe political and legal conflicts and disagreements, and many protests went in the streets against that law. In the American state of Connecticut, a teacher entered his house and found a masked, knife-wielding intruder, so he immediately shot him to death. After that, it appeared that it was his teenage son. As for the United Kingdom, the field of self-defense witnessed a severe political and legal conflict. Where both of the prime minister ‘David Cameron’ and lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice ‘Christopher Stephen Grayling’, were trying to pass a law that is more strict against burglary, but Liberty, the leading civil rights group, condemned the policy as “irresponsible”.
We may quote the saying of the minister of justice ‘Chris Grayling’ as evidence:
“No one of us really knows what his reaction will be when his house is under burglary, no one of us really knows how terrifying it will be to face a burglary in the midnight, no one of us really knows how horrifying it is to feel that our family is in danger. The heat of the situation might make you think nothing else but to protect your loved ones, but until now, you are not certain that the law will stand on your side, and I think householders acting instinctively and honestly in self-defense are victims, not criminals. They should be treated that way. That’s why we are going to deal with this issue once and for all, we are in the process of changing something which is very important, it is called ‘two strikes and you are out’, as if you commit two serious violent or sexual offences, you will get an automatic life sentence!! After the last elections, we promised that we would take measures against the out of control human rights’ culture. It is completely madness that the people who decided to attack our society are able to go back to courts for trial again and again, and we are accused of violating human rights if we deport them to the countries they came from. We know very well that we cannot deal with that matter the way we want, but we cannot continue in the same way we do in now.” … “You have to put yourself in the position of the man or woman who has reacted to the presence of a burglar and has reacted with fury, with anxiety, with fear ... and who has no time for calm reflection.” … “Those people are a real threat to our society, and we must treat them as such.”
Here are quotes of the Prime Minister ‘David Cameron’:
“We’re saying ‘you can do anything as long as it’s not grossly disproportionate," he said. "You couldn’t, for instance, stab a burglar if they were already unconscious, but really we should be putting the law firmly on the side of the homeowner, the householder, the family, and saying ‘when that burglar crosses your threshold, invades your home, threatens your family, they give up their rights’.”
One of the British journalists who is a supporter of taking stricter punishments toward burglary said:
“I think that judges are more lenient with dangerous crimes, and I think that the public failed as well in supporting the enacting of stricter punishment against burglars. Because you might get a strict punishment for simple crimes like speeding tickets while driving and so on. On the other hand, there are dangerous crimes that do not have strict punishments that are suitable for them.”
Polygamy in the Islamic Sharia and in the man-made laws
• Polygamy, multiple mistresses and wife swapping (Swinging)
• Polygamy and multiple mistresses in the man-made laws
• Difference between the second wife and the second mistress
• Wife swapping (Swinging) in the man-made laws.
•Polygamy in Judaism and Christianity.
• Polygamy in Islam.
Polygamy, multiple mistresses and wife swapping (Swinging)
The Islamic Sharia has permitted polygamy to the man in a framework that preserves the stability of society and family. The man-made laws, on the other hand, have permitted men to have multiple mistresses and girlfriends in a framework that destroys society and family.
We will mention a comparison between polygamy in the Islamic Sharia and multiple mistresses in the man-made laws, to see which legislation is consistent with instinct and guarantees for the woman, her rights and her dignity.
In fact, Islam is the only religion that clearly set restrictions on the polygamy, and reduced the number of women that the man could marry before the advent of Islam. While all the other religions never specified or determined the number of the wives that a man can marry. Allah the Almighty said:
“And if you fear that you shall not be able to deal justly with the orphan-girls (Which are under your guardianship, and you want to marry them because of their wealth in order to deprive them from their rights and from their dowries, as you used to do before the advent of Islam), then (leave them and) marry (other) women of your choice, two or three, or four; but if you fear that you shall not be able to deal justly (with them), then only one or (the slaves) that your right hands possess. That is nearer to prevent you from doing injustice.”
As for the rest of the other religions, polygamy is permissible without any restriction on the number of women that a man could marry and without any conditions about how the husband should deal justly between them. Before we discuss the situation of the religions on polygamy, we will present the situation of the man-made-law on that topic:
Polygamy and multiple mistresses in the man-made laws
Polygamy and multiple mistresses have one general meaning, which is that the man has felt his deep need to have more than one woman for specific personal reasons some of which we will state later. The final result is one, that the man has a wife and another wife, or has a wife and a mistress!
From the legal perspective, some man-made laws criminalized polygamy saying it is something opposed to the high morals, when at the same time it legalizes having multiple mistresses and it even legalizes adultery and prostitution! That is, if a man marries another wife and the government finds it out, then he will face trial because the government would consider his second marriage as a crime, lustfulness and moral decadence, and he will be punished with jail time.
On the other hand, if he has a mistress other than his wife, and even if he has illegitimate children from her, then it is fine, he is neither incriminated nor punished. That is because in their opinion, this is not a crime, or lustfulness, or even moral decadence; it is personal freedom and moral openness! Keep in mind that the difference between polygamy and multiple mistresses is just the presence of a marriage paper which is like a contract that preserves the rights of the second wife in case of marriage, and the absence of that paper means that the second wife will only remain a mistress without any recognized official rights!
So, do governments actually fight the fact that the man takes another woman other than his wife, whether it is his second wife or mistress, or do they fight that paper and that contract that connects him with his second wife and guarantees her rights upon him and obliges him to comply with those rights? In other words, is his crime that he has a relationship with another woman other than his wife, whether as a second wife or as a second mistress, or his crime is that he signed on a paper (of his second marriage)? If the ban of polygamy is to not let the man take another wife other than his first one then it is as well necessary to not let him take a second woman as mistress! In fact, many men in the Western countries have abstained from marriage and preferred to live their lives without being committed to one woman, so that they could change their girlfriend with a new one every couple of months and live a life like married people (i.e. to have sexual relations but) with no commitments! So did the man-made laws fight this phenomenon and criminalized it? Or is it considered a personal freedom that one man can sleep with many women without a limited number!
The worst of all is that the man-made laws have legalized the profession of prostitution, as there are many places authorized by the government for that purpose. It servitudes some women and leases them per hour to any man who wants to cheat on his wife. Each of these women gets an official license from the government to practice prostitution, and she has a tax file where she pays her taxes at the end of the year, just like any other honorable citizen!
This has been widely spread in many countries which itself criminalizes polygamy, as there is mostly no street in them that is free from whorehouse!
And here we want to say that polygamy should also be considered as personal freedom if the West really wants to respect personal freedom, especially since we know that it is not done but by the consent of both sides.
Difference between the second wife and the second mistress:
Before deciding to have a second wife, the man would think deeply and seriously and with a big responsibility, because of what will ensue this marriage from commitments over him and rights for the second wife, whether these rights are financial or legal. However, in the case of a mistress, the decision will be easier for him knowing that she will only remain a mistress with no commitments over him or rights of her own or of her children upon him, if she gets pregnant!
This opens the door to evilness and corruption within society, because it pushes the man to move from one mistress to another with the sole purpose of having fun and entertainment. Every time he gets pleasure from a mistress, he starts looking for another one or, in other words, for another victim whose feelings and emotions will be manipulated, and whose future will be ruined! Such a man wouldn’t abstain from lying to his mistress telling her that he wants to marry her and so on, and saying that what is preventing him from doing so is the government that doesn’t allow polygamy, and that he will separate from his wife to marry her. So, if he lied to and cheated on his wife, then what stops him from lying to and cheating on his mistress?!
Keep in mind that having a mistress has disadvantages for the man himself, as his life will be miserable, he will live like a criminal, hiding from everyone so that his wife will not see him with her or hear him speaking with her. This behavior is an inclusive indication that what he is doing is wrong, because if it was a good thing then he would not try to hide it! It has also disadvantages for the woman, since she has accepted to be a mistress to a married man, and she will never be equal to his first wife, but she will consider herself inferior, knowing that she lives with a man who is not her husband but the husband of another woman. Therefore, she will not live a normal life with him, neither internally or externally, as she will not feel enjoying while walking with him, fearing that they might be seen together, let alone her lack of psychological and emotional stability because her lover can leave her anytime he gets bored with her.
The other thing the man-made laws didn’t pay attention to or tried to ignore is that polygamy is more for the interest of the woman than it is for that of the man, as the number of women around the world is higher that the number of men, because of these reasons:
1. Births: many international statistics indicate that the average number of births of female infants exceeds the number of males.
2. Death rate: the death rate among men is very high because of the violent wars that are held between countries from time to time, such as the First and Second World War. In addition to that, there are also the traffic accidents that most of their victims appear to be males, and there is also the fact that the death rate at younger ages is higher for males than females.
3. Abstention of men from marriage: because they don’t want to have marital obligations and family obligations or because of homosexuality, as many men in some developed countries pursue homosexuality, or because of monasticism, where in some Christian communities many men head towards celibacy and they don’t get married.
4. Prison: where the percentage rate of males is higher than females.
All these reasons make it hard for a woman to get a husband who will share his life with her.
Through the banning of polygamy, the man-made laws made many women to accept becoming just mistresses, so they can get a man, even if that man is another woman’s husband! Rather, the man-made laws should legalize polygamy and leave it to the freedom and choice of women, as marriage in general is not completed but by mutual consent, and the criminalization of polygamy is in fact opposed to the freedom of the individuals that the same countries call for.
For example, if someone should say to one of these women who cannot get a husband and wants to marry a married man, whether she is Christian, Jewish, Muslim or Buddhist, that polygamy is morally inappropriate and that she’d better stay a virgin with no husband and be deprived of the right to live a normal life, like any other married woman, or if he should tell her that it is better for her to live as a mistress for a married man, and after he leave her then she has to look for another paramour who is also married man and she should spend her life that way. Her answer will be: ‘Why do you put your nose in my personal life? What is wrong with you? It is not your business! If you don’t want polygamy or see it inappropriate then this is your concern, and don’t impose your opinion on others who have different views, as anyone who wants polygamy can have it, and anyone who doesn’t want it can have only one wife!’
Wife swapping in the man-made laws
(Also known as: Swinging, wife sharing, partner sharing, wife trading or wife lending.)
What is now extremely common in many developed countries is the phenomenon of wife swapping (Swinging), during which two men swap their wives and each one makes love to the other man’s wife, or the man makes love to his wife and the other man’s wife at the same time. After that, the other man makes love to his wife and to the other man’s wife at the same time.
The reason for that, as many married people stated, is their desire for change and sexual diversity and they consider it as a way of rapprochement and consolidate relationships between friends. The writer ‘Curtis Bergstrand’ stated in his book “Swinging in America” that this habit at first grew in America among fighter pilots during the Second World War, when the death rates among pilots were high, so the pilots formed a special community for themselves to consolidate the relationships between their families. Thus, the pilots were taking care of the wives of the dead or lost pilots, such care and solicitude which extends to an emotional and sexual side as well. One of the swinging forms that began to appear and spread among married people in the American civil society, is known as ‘key clubs’, where men throw their house keys on the floor randomly and then each wife picks a key randomly, and in this way, the wife gets to be with the key owner for that night.
It was published on the news channel website ‘CNN’ in September 15, 2011 that the number of married people who practice swinging has reached about 15 million! Now, there are global organizations that encourage the phenomenon of wife swapping (swinging) and organize trips, clubs, and special parties where one can practice swinging. Men are not allowed to enter there unless they have their wives, unlike women, who are allowed to enter even if they do not have husbands. There are at those clubs, special rooms for sex, where a man can have sex with another man’s wife, and after he finishes he can have sex again but with another man’s wife. The same applies to the wife; she can also have sex with many married men, one by one!
Of course, wife swapping (swinging) in the man-made laws is not considered as a crime, but it is considered as personal and sexual freedom, and they consider the pilot who takes care and fulfills the sexual and emotional desires of another dead or missing pilot’s wife morally appropriate, but when it comes to polygamy, they consider it a crime! So, if a married pilot marries another dead pilot’s wife to take care of her, they will see him as a criminal and they will imprison him for the crime of polygamy!
Polygamy in Judaism and Christianity:
All prophets in the Bible had more than one wife, for example: The Prophet Solomon (king Solomon), David, Abraham, Jacob and others, peace be upon them, are recorded in the Bible to have had more than one wives.
1 kings (11:3): ‘And he (Prophet Solomon or king Solomon) had seven hundred wives, princesses, and three hundred concubines.’
Deuteronomy (21:15): ‘If a man has two wives, one beloved, and another hated.’
Exodus (21:10): ‘but if he likes her and he married her, then he married another woman, then her food, clothes and making love to her are not diminished.’
Not even one text in the Bible, whether in the Old Testament or in the New Testament, mentioned the ban of polygamy nor even specified or determined the number of wives! One of the texts that prove the presence of polygamy in the New Testament:
1 Timothy (3:1): ‘1This is a true saying, If a man desire the office of a bishop, he desire a good work. 2 A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach; … 12 Let the deacons be the husbands of one wife, ruling their children and their own houses well.’
In this text, we find out that polygamy is permissible to everyone except those who want to be deacons or members of the diocese.
The writer Matilda Joslyn in her book “Women, Church and State” said:
‘Is it not clear from the words of Paul about the qualifications of a bishop, that he has to be married to one woman, that polygamy was permissible in the first church with the approval of Jesus Christ’s apostles?! If so, then why are different measures being adopted nowadays other than the ones the apostles themselves approved of ?!’.
Some Christians quote some texts from the New Testament as proofs of banning the act of polygamy, for example:
Gospel of Mark (10:2-12): “2And the Pharisees came to him, testing him, and asked him, ‘Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife?’ 3He answered, ‘What did Moses command you?’ 4They said, ‘Moses allowed a certificate of divorce to be written, and to divorce her.’ 5But Jesus said to them, ‘For the hardness of your heart he wrote you this commandment. 6But from the beginning of the creation, God made them male and female. 7For this cause a man will leave his father and mother, and will join to his wife, 8and the two will become one flesh, so that they are no longer two, but one flesh. 9What therefore God has joined together let no man separate.’ 10In the house, his disciples asked him again about the same matter. 11He said to them, ‘Whoever divorces his wife, and marries another, commits adultery against her. 12If a woman herself divorces her husband, and marries another, she commits adultery.”
Gospel of Luke (16:14-18): “14And the Pharisees also, who were covetous, heard all these things: and they derided him. 15And he said unto them, ‘Ye are they which justify yourselves before men; but God knoweth your hearts: for that which is highly esteemed among men is abomination in the sight of God. 16The law and the prophets were until John: since that time the kingdom of God is preached, and every man presseth into it. 17And it is easier for heaven and earth to pass, than one tittle of the law to fail. 18Whosoever putteth away his wife, and marrieth another, committeth adultery: and whosoever marrieth her that is put away from her husband committeth adultery.”
Gospel of Matthew (5:31-32): “31It was also said, ‘Whoever shall put away his wife, let him give her a writing of divorce, 32but I tell you that whoever puts away his wife, except for the cause of fornication, cause her to commit adultery; and whoever marries her that is divorced commits adultery.”
As we can see, these three texts talk about divorce and not polygamy, and the meaning of the sentence ‘But from the beginning of the creation, God made them male and female’ is Adam and Eve in general. It does not say that polygamy has been prohibited since the beginning of creation, because this contradicts with what is known about polygamy in the Bible and especially for the prophets. Therefore, these texts are not right to testify the ban of polygamy, but to the ban of divorce, whether the man has one wife or more. The texts also mention that the only case a divorce is acceptable is if the wife has committed adultery. In this case the man can divorce her, but if he divorces her unfairly without her committing adultery and marries another woman, then he is the one who commits adultery (meaning he cheated on her as if he has slept with another woman who is not permissible for him). The text does not say that whoever marries a woman other than his wife without divorcing her, has cheated on her or has committed adultery, and the same applies to the sentence ‘if a woman divorces her husband and marries another she commits adultery’. Here, adultery is related to divorcing the husband and not polygamy. If the meaning here was polygamy, then how is polygamy possible in the case of a woman who divorces her husband and marries another one (singular) or a man who divorces his wife and marries another one (singular)?! If polygamy was the problem, then a husband’s divorcing his wife and marrying another would be permissible, but what is meant here is that the husband should not to divorce his wife even if he has more than one wife.
Also, the sentence ‘who marries a divorced woman he commits adultery’, clearly indicates that the man who marries a divorced woman, even if this is his first marriage, is considered to be committing adultery, not because of polygamy, since he didn’t have a wife before, but because he married a divorced woman.
Note, we notice the difference between the Gospel of Mark (10:2-12) and the Gospel of Luke (16:14-18), as they both mentioned the same story but through a very different text, which indicates the disqualification of their testimony and the impossibility to consider them a sacred text revealed by Allah (God) or to attribute them to Jesus, peace be upon him.
1 Corinthians (7:1-9): “1Now concerning the things about which you wrote to me: it is good for a man not to touch a woman. 2Nevertheless, to avoid fornication, let each man have his own wife, and let each woman have her own husband … 8But I say to the unmarried and to widows, it is good for them if they remain even as I am. 9But if they don’t have self-control, let them marry. For it is better to marry than to burn.”
Here, it as well says (let each man have his own wife), the meaning here has nothing to do with the prohibition of polygamy, but for man not to touch another woman who is not his wife, to not approach adultery, it is as the same context as: ‘Everyone should take care of his son, or everyone should protect his home, money or business’, this doesn’t mean he has only one son or one home, but it speaks with a more general meaning. Another example at 1 Samuel:
1 Samuel (15:3): “3Now go and smite Amalek, and utterly destroy all that they have, and spare them not; but slay both man and woman, infant and suckling, ox and sheep, camel and ass.”
The point is not to kill one man, one woman, one child or one donkey. It means everyone from men, women, children and donkeys, etc.
Also, in the saying ‘For it is better to marry than to burn’ there is no indication of prohibiting polygamy, but it just says marriage without any restriction of the number of wives!
There are many pastors and Christians from several sects who admit the absence of a prohibition on polygamy in Christianity, and many of them married more than one woman, for example the King Charlemagne, the emperor Valentinian I, Luther and others.
The writer Matilda Joslyn mentioned that by saying:
“As it is historically known in an incontrovertible way, both Christian church and Christian state used their powers throughout the different ages, and under different circumstances in favor of polygamy. In the fourth century, the emperor Valentinian I gave Christians the right to marry two women. In the eighth century, King Charlemagne, who was the head of the Christian state and church, married six women, and some historians remember they were nine… Luther himself, while holding the Bible in his hand, the New and the Old Testament, said: ‘I admit from my side that if a man wants to marry two or more women then I cannot prohibit him from doing so, and this act of his doesn’t violate the Bible.”
St. Augustine said:
“Now, in this era, after we have used the Roman law, the man cannot marry another wife as long as his wife is alive.”
This indicates that the prohibition of polygamy was due to the accreditation of the Roman law, and not because of the religious texts.
St. Augustine also said:
‘Once again, Jacob, son of Isaac was accused of committing big crime, because he married four wives, but this accusation is baseless and meaningless, because polygamy was not a crime as it was the tradition, but now it has become a crime because it is not in the tradition… and the only reason to consider polygamy as a crime is because both the law and tradition prohibit it!”
Polygamy in Islam
To understand the Islamic perspective of polygamy we must know the following:
1. That Islam is not the first or the only religion that legalized polygamy, but it is the first and only religion that put restrictions on polygamy, also it is the only religion that determined the number of wives on a maximum four, while polygamy was legalized in all other religions without any restriction or maximum number of wives. Al-Hârith bin Qâis, said:
“I converted to Islam while I have eight wives, I mentioned that to the Prophet ((ﷺ, and he said to me: ‘Choose from them four (and give divorce to the others)’.”
2. Polygamy in Islam is not one of the obligatory acts on each Muslim, as he will not sin if he didn’t do it, nor will it be considered as lack of faith, but it is from the permissible acts. Whoever wants to marry more than one wives he can, whoever doesn’t want to then he is free. This is an example of the many permissible acts in Islam that the Muslim will not be held responsible for if he leaves it.
3. To know and understand the reason behind the descent of the Qur’anic Verse which permits polygamy and determines it on four wives, we should read the Qur’anic Verses that precede it, understand them, and understand the reason of their decent. Then we will understand that this verse was descended only to defend the woman and protect her rights.
Allah the Almighty said:
“O mankind! Be dutiful to your Lord, Who created you from a single person (Adam), and from him (Adam) He created his wife [Hawwâ’ (Eve)], and from them both He created many men and women; and fear Allâh through Whom you demand (your mutual rights), and (do not cut the relations of) the wombs (kinship). Surely, Allâh is Ever an All-Watcher over you. * And give unto orphans their property and do not exchange (your) bad things for (their) good ones; and devour not their substance (by adding it) to your substance. Surely, this is a great sin. * And if you fear that you shall not be able to deal justly with the orphan-girls (Which are under your guardianship, and you want to marry them because of their wealth in order to deprive them from their rights and from their dowries, as you used to do before the advent of Islam), then (leave them and) marry (other) women of your choice, two or three, or four; but if you fear that you shall not be able to deal justly (with them), then only one or (the slaves) that your right hands possess. That is nearer to prevent you from doing injustice. * And give to the women (whom you marry) their Mahr (obligatory bridal-money given by the husband to his wife at the time of marriage) with a good heart; but if they, of their own good pleasure, remit any part of it to you, take it, and enjoy it without fear of any harm (as Allâh has made it lawful). * And give not unto the foolish (and the orphan children who are under your guardianship) your property (i.e. their property which you guard, and which you should guard and to not destroy as if it’s yours) which Allâh has made a means of support for you (i.e. because Allah has made the money a means of support for human beings, but the foolish and the small children can’t manage their wealth or guard it), but feed and clothe them therewith, and speak to them words of kindness and justice (i.e. tell them that you will give them their money just when they grow up enough or when they can manage it rightly etc.). * And try orphans (as regards their intelligence) until they reach the age of marriage; if then you find sound judgement in them, release their property to them, but consume it not wastefully and hastily fearing that they should grow up, and whoever (amongst guardians) is rich, he should take no wages, but if he is poor, let him have for himself what is just and reasonable (according to his labour). And when you release their property to them, take witness in their presence; and Allâh is All-Sufficient in taking account.”
In the beginning of the Noble Verses, Allah the Almighty orders the people to worship Him and fear Him, and He orders the guardians of the orphans to give them their money if they reach puberty and see that they can manage their money, and not to oppress them by looting their money. As the Arabs before the advent of Islam used to defraud the orphans, so if a man had an orphan under his tutelage, he would mix the orphan’s money with his, take what was good and leave the bad so he would defraud the orphan! Al-Saddi said:
“It was spread between the Arabs that the orphan’s guardian used to mix the orphan’s money with his, so he takes the fat sheep from the orphan’s sheeps, and replace it with a skinny one and say: a sheep for a sheep. Then he used to take the good dirham and replace it with the bad dirham, and after say: a dirham for a dirham.”
Allah the Almighty banned the crime of stealing an orphan’s money, as He said: “And give unto orphans their property and do not exchange (your) bad things for (their) good ones; and devour not their substance (by adding it) to your substance. Surely, this is a great sin.” which means it is a major sin.
The series of frauds continues on the orphans and so does the stealing of their money especially if the orphan is a girl. When ‘Urwa ibn Az-Zubayr -may Allah be pleased with him- asked Aisha –may Allah be pleased with her- about the saying of Allah the Almighty ‘And if you fear that you shall not be able to deal justly with the orphan-girls’ she said:
‘O my nephew! It was about the female orphan under the tutelage of her guardian and her money was mixed with his, and her guardian was interested in her beauty and wealth and wanted to marry her with a little or reduced dowry. So such guardians were forbidden to marry female orphans unless they deal with them justly and give their full dowry; and they were ordered to marry women other than them (if they were afraid to not deal justly with the female orphans).”
Therefore, the Noble Verse was descended regarding the man who steals the right of the orphan who is under his tutelage and solicitude. Because if a man wanted to marry an orphan girl he wouldn’t give her dowry as it was usual for other women, so Allah the Almighty prohibited him from doing that and ordered him to give her the standard dowry like he would give to the other women, or leave her and not marry her, and he could marry another woman, two, three, or four as a maximum.
But as usual, the enemies of Islam come with their usual and famous magical scissor, and cut from the Noble Verses everything that preceded the saying of Allah the Almighty “marry (other) women of your choice, two or three, or four;” and what is after, that is the condition of polygamy which is justice between wives!
Condition of Polygamy in the Quran:
Islam didn’t order the man to have another wife other than his, but it permitted him to do so, and set for him conditions that make him take it very seriously before deciding to marry a second wife. One of these conditions is to achieve justice among wives in relation to food, drink, clothes, and staying. Allah the Almighty said
“if you fear that you shall not be able to deal justly (with them), then marry only one.”
Islam also prohibited oppression and injustice towards the wives, or to be more inclined towards one of them in comparison to the other. Allah the Almighty said
“You will never be able to do perfect justice between wives even if it is your ardent desire, so do not incline too much (to one of them by giving her more of your time and provision) so as to leave (the other) hanging (i.e. neither divorced nor married). And if you do justice, and do all that is right and fear Allâh (by keeping away from all that is wrong), then Allâh is Ghafûr (Ever Oft-Forgiving), Rahîm (Most Merciful).”
(An- Nisâ’ 4:129)
The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said:
“When a man has two wives and he is inclined to one of them, he will come on the Day of resurrection with a side of his body hanging down.”
(Ahmad, Abu Dawûd, An-Nasa'i, At-Tîrmidhi and Ibn Majah)
Note: Dear reader, it needs to be taken into consideration that Islam is an international religion that was descended for all human beings for every time and place, and it wasn’t descended for certain people or communities and according to their way of thinking and desires. Therefore, Islam permitted the man to marry more than one wife, understanding the realities of their life and their living conditions, since what is thought to be unsuitable in this society, may be suitable for another, and what is thought to be unsuitable in this time, might be suitable in another. Also, this was decided as a mercy for women who would remain maidens in case there was not Polygamy. Therefore, anyone who wants to take this permission, he can but only by committing to its conditions, and anyone who doesn’t want to, then so be it!
Regimes that govern communities
• Difference between the Islamic Sharia and the man-made Regimes.
• The opinion of the Bible about Democracy.
• The Islamic Sharia and Freedom of speech.
Regimes that govern communities
Difference between the Islamic Sharia and the man-made Regimes:
There are many types of man-made regimes, but the prevailing ones are two known systems in the modern communities, the democratic system and the dictatorial system. Their operational practices have proven their failure through the past centuries in addition to their non-achievement of peace and international justice the people call for. What is strange is that the world seeks to search for systems that achieve stability and security for people, while it is at the same time visible and close to them, and that is the Islamic Sharia. However, some of the political elites, who suck the blood out of the people, know that adopting the Islamic Sharia will make them loose many of their power and privileges. That is why they force the lawmakers and jurists through many methods and ways to enact the needed legislations that would give them full control over the weak.
Definition of democracy:
The term democracy is Greek and it derives from two words: “demos” which means “nation” and “Cratus” which means ruling or government, meaning people ruling themselves, by establishing a parliament system in which people elect who will present them within the parliament. There, every law is discussed, and it is acknowledged what laws will get the approval of the majority of the parliament members. Namely, the opinion of the majority of the members is the one that must be applied even if it is contrary to the opinion of the minority within the parliament. Therefore, its laws and systems are unstable because the parliament and its members are also unstable. Allah the Almighty said the truth. He illustrated in the Quran that humans’ affairs will not be well and stable except when they apply the Allah’s Laws, He said:
“And if the truth had been in accordance with their desires, verily, the heavens and the earth, and whosoever is therein would have been corrupted! Nay, We have brought them their reminder, but they turn away from their reminder.”
Definition of dictatorship:
The dictatorial regime is completely contrary to the democratic regime, where the opinion of the ruling or elite minority, or the opinion of the dictator ruling is the one that must be applied, even if that is contrary to the opinion of the majority of people. Allah the Almighty said about the dominant Pharaoh, who transgressed, committed mischief in the land and enslaved its people:
“Pharaoh said: ‘I show you only that which I see (as correct), and I guide you only to the path of right policy!’.”
Many of us, hearing the term democracy imagine beautiful meanings such as: ensuring individual freedoms, respect of the other’s opinion, freedom of speech and freedom of establishing religious rites for the minorities and respect of their rights and interests, as well as the lack of their persecution. However, in reality, the democratic regime is a dictatorial regime, or more accurately, an authoritarian regime. That is because the majority inside it impose to the minorities many rules that go with their lusts and their orientations, even if these rules are against the principles and interests, or even the beliefs of the minorities, or even if they could perhaps cause harm to them. There are instances of contemporary reality that show the other ugly face of democracy:
• In 2009, in the name of democracy, a referendum on banning the construction of minarets was held in Switzerland. After that, a law was pronounced based on the opinion of the majority which deprived the minority of Muslims of constructing minarets for their mosques. This matter made the International Amnesty express their sorrow regarding this voting, indicating that the ban of minarets represents a violation of Switzerland’s commitment to the freedom of the expression of faith!
• In the name of democracy in some European capitals, until our days, mosques are banned from being built by the minority of Muslims, and each time the minority of Muslims try to issue a permit to build a mosque, the majority in the parliament of that country vote against it, and if they vote for it, they put enough inhibitions and obstacles to prevent its construction.
• In the name of democracy in some European countries, laws are issued that prohibit the European Muslim women from wearing the veil (Niqâb) in public places, presenting many excuses such as that it is inappropriate to cover their faces in public places and so on. Even though others may rationally accept this reason, we see the same governments oblige bikers to put on helmets that cover their faces in the streets and public places! Isn’t it worthwhile for the bikers to show their faces as well! There are also many people in the European countries and East Asia such as China, Thailand and others, who prefer to wear a medical face-cover because they feel that it protects them from viruses and diseases, and this was never mentioned or said to be inappropriate, even though the face is covered in public!
In addition, isn’t the act of prohibiting women from wearing what they want considered as a disrespect of their choices and as a restraint to their individual freedom and expression of faith?
Not being fine with someone else’s faith does not mean that you can force them to leave it. Many Indian Sikhs wear black turbans on their heads leaving their hair grow without cutting any of it, they move freely in Europe and are in charge of several government jobs without having to take the turbans off. It is not anyone’s right to force them to take them off or shave their hair, just because they are not convinced of those turbans or the length of their hair!
• In the name of democracy, in some of the developed countries, one of the right wing extremist parties won the local elections in several cities. The first of their decisions was to prohibit serving Halal food to the Muslim students in the schools that are located within the cities they won the elections. Therefore, they obliged the schools to serve meals with pork and other types of meat that are not slaughtered according to the Islamic Sharia for Muslim students. While they were supposed to codify laws that would eliminate corruption and guarantee freedoms.
• In the name of democracy, in some developed countries, a law was issued, which included the banning of the method of Halal slaughter in this country. This means the incapability of Muslims to eat meat that was not slaughtered according to the Islamic Sharia. The goal is to push Muslims to leave this country for another that respects their beliefs. And that is because Muslims would not be able to eat the meat of all the animals that are electrocuted, hit on the head with an iron hammer until death, hanged, strangled or drowned.
These are some examples of the tyranny of the majority over the minority’s rights. Their right to practice religious rites with freedom without any persecution or harassment, or their right to pick their clothes or even the food they want! From these examples and others, it is clear that the democratic or the secular regime cannot, in the practical reality, coexist but with itself. As for the minorities, it makes up excuses to justify the reason it persecutes and constricts them, accusing them of not being able to coexist with other regimes! The Islamic Sharia though, is unlike that, as it accommodates all humans, despite their religious differences, as it mentioned the rights of the minorities and made those rights independent of the majority’s opinion, and it also obliged the majority to guarantee the protection of those rights and to not violate them, even if the opinion of the majority was different.
So here, the opinion of the majority is not taken into consideration, as long as it is contrary to the rights that the forgivable Islamic Sharia guaranteed. Whoever wants to seek more about this, there are many books that talked about the rights of non-Muslims in Islamic countries that he can refer to. Allah the Almighty has spoken the truth:
“And if you obey most of those on the earth, they will mislead you far away from Allâh’s Path. They follow nothing but conjectures, and they do nothing but lie.”
Therefore, none of the man-made regimes, no matter the degree to which it achieved, to reach the peaceful coexistence among the nations and the peaceful coexistence within the society itself, did so like the Islamic Sharia. The reason for that is that the Islamic Sharia is a divine laws and systems that was revealed by the One Who created mankind, and He knows better what is best for them. Allah the Almighty said:
“Should not He Who has created know? And He is Al-Latîf (the Most Kind and Courteous to His slaves), Al-Khabîr (All-Aware of everything).”
The opinion of the Bible about democracy
As for the Bible, it has cast the democracy altogether:
Paul in his letter to the Romans (13:1-7): ‘1Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God. 2 Whosoever therefore resisteth the power, resisteth the ordinance of God: and they that resist shall receive to themselves damnation. 3For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to the evil. Wilt thou then not be afraid of the power? do that which is good, and thou shalt have praise of the same: 4For he is the minister of God to thee for good. But if thou do that which is evil, be afraid; for he beareth not the sword in vain: for he is the minister of God, a revenger to execute wrath upon him that doeth evil. 5Wherefore ye must needs be subject, not only for wrath, but also for conscience sake. 6For this cause pay ye tribute also: for they are God's ministers, attending continually upon this very thing. 7Render therefore to all their dues: tribute to whom tribute is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; honour to whom honour.’
The Islamic Sharia and freedom of speech
The Islamic Sharia stated and confirmed the importance of the freedom of speech, especially the one that benefits the society and does not corrupt it, and unites the people and does not divide them, and achieves their common goals and does not violate their freedom nor attacks it. Not the freedom of speech that is out of control so it ruins and does not build, corrupts and does not reform, and it bequeaths hostility among the members of society. Allah the Almighty said:
“O you who believe! Let not a group scoff at another group, it may be that the latter are better than the former. Nor let (some) women scoff at other women, it may be that the latter are better than the former. Nor defame one another, nor insult one another by nicknames. How bad is it to insult one’s brother after having Faith [i.e. to call your Muslim brother (a faithful believer) as: "O sinner", or "O wicked"]. And whosoever does not repent, then such are indeed Zâlimûn (wrong-doers, etc.).”
We see Satirical TV Shows widespread in many civilized countries around the world, that are indifferent to the feelings of the ones they criticize in their humiliating comic style. That irony which the man-made laws call freedom of speech and guarantee its freedom! These programs in some countries proved to be politicized and have nothing to do with the freedom of speech, since they are funded by certain political parties or agencies in order to weaken their political opponents and drop their popularity.
As for the freedom of speech in the Islamic Sharia, it has regulations and standards that if you surpass, this becomes a violation of people’s rights or the rights of the society itself. For example, concerning the matter of mocking the Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ, what are the wanted results of it? What are the positive gains that will be achieved through it? Isn’t it a way of popularizing the spirit of hatred among the nations? And among Muslims and non-Muslims members of the same society? Is the aggression on the dead and their disrespect a civilized aspect? I believe that the one who dared to do that and support it, if one of his parents, children, his favorite football player or celebrity was cursed, then he would not stand still, he would defend them in any way. Keep in mind that in the countries where one of the Messengers of Allah is offended under the umbrella of freedom of speech, their legislations incriminate offense in any form towards the chief of state or the prime minister or mocking his prestige! Can’t the chief of state be offended through a caricature or so, under the umbrella of freedom as well?!
Islam has prohibited the cursing of other’s beliefs in order to close all the doors that could lead to dispute or hostility inside the society, and to eliminate all forms of extremism. Therefore, the wise are obliged to condemn those who want to ignite hostilities between the nations, which will result in wars that will destroy everything. Allah the Almighty said:
“And insult not those whom they (disbelievers) worship besides Allâh, lest they insult Allâh wrongfully without knowledge. Thus We have made fair-seeming to each people its own doings; then to their Lord is their return and He shall then inform them of all that they used to do.’’
Keep in mind that the matter of mocking the Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ is not an innovation of this era, but it has started since he ((ﷺ began his mission. His enemies said he was a liar, a soothsayer, a poet, and a crazy person. Allah the Almighty said:
“Indeed, We know that your breast is straitened at what they say. * So glorify the praises of your Lord and be of those who prostrate themselves (to Him). * And worship your Lord until there comes unto you the certainty (i.e. death).”
To put some regulations and standards for the freedom of speech does not only concern the Islamic Sharia, since other societies do the same according to their beliefs and the interests of their nations.
The United Kingdom for example, banned the movie about Jesus Christ with the excuse that Christianity is part of the public order of the state that needs to be respected and taken into consideration. Many countries also restrict the freedom of speech for people, in case that freedom is related to Jews or questions the Holocaust, as those countries accuse the one who does so being an anti-Semitist and then he is punished with jail time.
The Islamic Sharia prepared a good environment for the freedom of speech that enjoins the good and forbids the evil, where it can grow and settle down. Therefore, it gave every individual the right to participate and give his opinion in what concerns society, as long as he is not ordering the people to do evil deeds. Allah the Almighty said:
“And by the Mercy of Allâh, you dealt with them gently. And had you been severe and harsh-hearted, they would have broken away from about you; so pass over (their faults), and ask (Allâh’s) Forgiveness for them; and consult them in the affairs. Then when you have taken a decision, put your trust in Allâh, certainly, Allâh loves those who put their trust (in Him).”
In addition, Islam obliged the freedom of speech to be a responsible freedom that is not affected by others, in order to differentiate between right and wrong, as Abd Allah ibn Mas‘ûd said:
“Do not let yourselves be 'yes-men', saying: ‘If the people are doing good then we will be doing good, and if they are doing wrong then we will be doing wrong.’ Rather, make up your own minds, if the people are doing good then you also do good, and if they are doing wrong, then do not behave unjustly.”
This freedom of speech in Islam wasn’t just theories or a monopoly to certain group of people, but it is available for everyone. The Messenger ((ﷺ, who was sent as a mercy for all creatures, applied it practically so that his nation (Ummah) would follow his example after him. It was narrated that Abu Sa‘eed Al-Khudri said:
“A Bedouin came to the Prophet (ﷺ) to ask him to pay back a debt that the Prophet (ﷺ) owed him, and he spoke harshly, saying: ‘I will keep asking for my rights bothering you unless you repay me.’ The Companions of the Prophet (ﷺ) rebuked him and said: ‘Woe to you, do you know who you are speaking to?’ He said: ‘I am only asking for my rights.’ The Prophet (ﷺ) said: ‘Why do you not support the one who has a right?’ Then he sent word to Khawlah bint Qais, saying to her: ‘If you have dates, lend them to us until our dates come, then we will pay you back.’ She said: ‘Yes, may my father be ransomed for you, O Messenger of Allah (ﷺ)!’ So, she gave him a loan, and he paid back the Bedouin and fed him. He (the Bedouin) said: ‘You have paid me in full, may Allah pay you in full.’ Then the Prophet (ﷺ) said: ‘Those are the best of people. May that nation not be cleansed (of sin) among whom the weak cannot get their rights without trouble.”
Then his companions followed his example after him, and when the oath of allegiance was given to Abu Bakr as-Siddiq –may Allah be pleased with him- in order to take the succession, he delivered a speech to the people that included the fundamentals of governance in Islam; which the other nations did not achieve and never will under the human legislation that is subjected to the whims, as well as the political and social variables. He said:
‘O people, I am now your ruler and I am not the best of you, so if you see me right then support me, and if you see me wrong then correct me. Obey me as long as I obey Allah regarding you. If I disobey Him, then do not obey me. The strongest of you is weak at my sight until I take from him the right of the other people, and the weakest of you is strong at my sight until I bring him his right, I say this and I ask Allah forgiveness for you and me.’
(The prophetic biography from ibn Hishâm, At-Tabakât from ibn Sa‘d, the beginning and the end from ibn Kathîr)
Freedom of religious expression:
The Islamic Sharia states the guarantee of the freedom of belief for non-Muslims, of Jews and Christians, with no persecution, so no one is obliged to leave his religion and embrace Islam. Allah the Almighty said:
“There is no compulsion in religion. Verily, the Right Path has become distinct from the wrong path. Whoever disbelieves in Tâghût (anything worshipped other than Allâh, like Satan, devils, idols, stones, sun, stars, angels, human beings, saints, graves, rulers, leaders, etc., who were falsely worshipped) and believes in Allâh, then he has grasped the most trustworthy handhold that will never break. And Allâh is Samî‘ (All-Hearer), ‘Alîm (All-Knower).”
While the history mentioned to us the persecution the Christian sects used to practice against each other due to differences in belief.
Freedom of scientific expression:
The Islamic Sharia also stated the freedom of speech in science and education, and lifted up the status of scientists, while the history mentioned to us the violent conflict between the church and the science and scientists, as well as the suppression of the freedom of scientific expression.
The Islamic Sharia obliged every Muslim to seek science and education. The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said:
“Seeking knowledge is a duty upon every Muslim.”
(Abu Dawûd, ibn Majah)
The Islamic Sharia lifted up the status of scientists. Allah the Almighty said:
“Allâh will exalt in degree those of you who believe, and those who have been granted knowledge. And Allâh is Well-Acquainted with what you do.”
Freedom of expression in the Bible:
As we saw in Paul's letter to the Romans (13:1), that letter overthrew all the means of democracy and freedom of speech, and it set the basis for dictatorship and authoritarianism, in addition to the submission to the ruler in full obedience.
• Jihad in Islamic Sharia.
• Status of the earth before, at the time and after the advent of Islam.
• The people on the religion of their kings.
• The imposition of Christianity by the edge of the sword.
• Jihad and the guarantee of freedom of belief.
• The messages of the Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ on defending Christians.
• Jihad in Islam and its sections:
1. Stages of Jihad
2. Preventives of Jihad
3. The Goal of Jihad
4. Who is targeted by Jihad?
5. Regulations of Jihad
• Is every Muslim war a Jihad.
• The Holy war.
• Difference between war and Jihad.
• Jihad in the Bible.
Jihad in the Islamic Sharia
This chapter is not enough to cover the meaning of Jihad, its reasons, goals and morals, but we will summarize it in order to give our kind reader a brief idea about Jihad in the cause of Allah. The Jihad, which the haters of Allah’s Sharia tried to use as a gateway to fabricate misconceptions against Islam and frighten others of it, but through our explanation, it will be clear that Jihad is a mercy for the humankind.
Status of the earth before, at the time and after the advent of Islam
Whoever reads and explores the history of nations and civilizations throughout the history will find that the earth was a burning mass by wars, fuel of which was the money and men. How many cities were destroyed, economies were collapsed, wives became widows, children became orphans? Millions of people’s rights were violated because of them and the victims of these wars are everywhere.
In the continent of Europe alone, not even one country was stable on its borders and state for a specific period. The borders were always changing due to invasions from the east, west, south or north side, and the fire of war among countries did not settle down for one day. Each country was either a dominant state that collect tax (Jizyah) from others, or a country that was dominated by another and paying tax (Jizyah) to it. The goal of imposing tax (Jizyah) was to see the continuity of loyalty or its absence, as if a country stopped paying tax for the country that was in control, this was considered a declaration of war.
The people on the religion of their kings
That was the status of people before Islam, following the faith and creed of their kings. For example, no citizen of the Byzantine Empire dared to embrace Magianism (Zoroastrianism), the religion of the Persian Empire, as he would be considered a traitor of the emperor and he would be sentenced to death and crucified for embracing the religion of the enemies, and vice versa. Even worse are the wars that happened between the Christian Sects because of the differences in their beliefs. An example of that is the Roman Empire, which persecuted the Egyptian Copts for being Christians while its official religion was the idolatry. After the Roman Empire embraced Christianity, and it became its official religion, it kept persecuting the Christian Egyptians and causing massacres because of their differences in the sects!
The imposition of Christianity by the edge of the sword
Christians used to form a small-persecuted group in the Roman Empire, but when Constantine l embraced Christianity, it grew in power and became the official religion of the Roman Empire. Following this changeover, all the pagans were persecuted; their temples were ruined or turned into churches. Even the Christians who were opposed to the particular sect were persecuted. For example:
• In the era of Theodosius I, Christianity was declared as the only religion to be accepted in the Roman Empire. The Alexandria library was burnt on the grounds that it contained pagan books; the Greek Olympics were cancelled on the grounds that they entailed pagan habits.
• In the year 772, King Charlemagne fought the Saxons for 33 years to impose Christianity on them by the edge of the sword. One of his crimes was the massacre of Verden in the year 782, where he executed 4500 prisoners of the Saxons because of their refusal to embrace Christianity. By the time Charlemagne’s army had left, the Saxons retaliated for that massacre by burning the churches and slaughtering priests as a revenge for what had happened. Charlemagne issued a law ‘Capitulatio de partibus Saxoniae’ that stated the killing of anyone from the Saxons who refused to embrace Christianity.
• Between 1929 and 1945, the Croatian Revolutionary Movement ‘Ustaša’ committed massacres against the Orthodox Serbs and force them to embrace Catholicism, which resulted in hundreds of thousands of Serb victims.
• The ‘stolen children’ or the ‘stolen generations’, as between 1909 and 1970, the Australian government and church snatched children from their parents, who were Indigenous Aboriginal, by force, kept them away from their parents and converted them to Christianity.
• In 2007, the Pope of Vatican, Benedict XVI, made an apology to the people of Latin American continent for the persecutions and massacres and the sufferance they went through due to the ‘obligatory Christianization’ campaigns that were carried out by the Spanish colonizers.
• Between the sixteenth and the seventeenth century, the Portuguese colonizers persecuted, tortured and slaughtered whoever refused to embrace Christianity from the Indian city, Goa. The colonizers destroyed more than 300 Hindu temples. The priests prohibited the Hindus from reading their holy Buddhist books, and punished harshly those who disobeyed, forcing children who were above fifteen years old to listen to Christian preaching. Furthermore, they imposed the Portuguese language on the Hindu population and prohibited them from using their own language.
This is only a summary of the imposition of Christianity on people by the edge of sword and the persecution of those of other religions. In addition to that, are the wars that took place among the Christian sects from the Catholics, Protestants, and Orthodox due to the differences in sects and the persecutions of one another. From the examples that clarify the level of hatred between the Christian sects:
• Massacres against the Catholic Cathar sect in Languedoc region, south of France from 1209 until 1229. When Pope Innocent III declared the crusade on the Cathar sect in order to finish them, which resulted in massacres, the victims of which reached one million, during a 20-year period of wars against the Cathar. The first of these massacres was the massacre of Beziers city in 1209, where the entire population of that city was slaughtered, and the city was entirely burnt after a severe siege. 
• The massacre of Merindol city, France in 1545, where the Catholics killed thousands of Christians who belonged to the Waldensians sect. 
• The massacre of Toulouse, France 1562, where the Catholics killed 5000 Protestants and forced the other Protestants who were still alive to emigrate from the city. 
• The massacre of Vassy, France 1562, where the Catholics killed the Protestants. That war sparked the French religious wars, which were eight wars against the Protestants.
• The massacre of Feast of St. Michael in Nimes city, France 1567, where the Protestants carried out a massacre against the Catholics. Τhere were 24 Catholic priests among the victims, as a response to the Catholic persecution against them. 
• The massacre of Bartholomew’s, France 1572, where the Catholics killed thirty thousand Protestants. 
• Many massacres by the Catholics against the Protestants and by the Protestants against the Catholics, during the ‘Irish Confederate Wars’ 1641-1652, between the Catholic Irish on one side and on the other side the British parliamentarians and the Protestant Scottish in Ireland.
• The massacres and persecutions against thousands of Anabaptists, both by the Catholics and the Protestants, between 1525 and 1660, which caused big migrations towards North American continent, for those who belonged to the Anabaptists.
• In 1656, Macarios III Zaim, the Patriarch of Antioch, wrote about the massacres the Catholic Polish committed against the Christians who were followers of the Greek Orthodox Church, indicating that the number of people killed ranged between seventy and eighty thousand.
This is a summary of the wars, conflicts and persecutions that were practiced by the followers of the Christian religion against each other. After this digression, let us look at Jihad in Islam in order to be clear for the wise that it is a mercy for the humankind, and it is not like those who follow the politicized media imagine it to be.
Jihad and the guarantee of freedom of belief
In order to know the extent to which Islam guarantees the freedom of belief, we need to know the real goals of Jihad. In order to make it more clear, we will start to gradually analyze the meaning of Jihad. It has two meanings: general Jihad and particular Jihad.
1. The General Jihad:
Is divided into two sections: (Jihad against one’s self, and against Satan)
• Jihad An-Nafs (struggling against one’s self): when the person struggling himself to learn the religion, to act according to it and to call for it, and also struggling himself to avoid what Allah has forbidden and to do what Allah has ordered according to his abilities, seeking the pleasure of Allah. The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said:
“The Mujâhid (the fighter who is doing Jihad) is the one who struggles himself seeking the pleasure of Allah.”
(Sahih ibn Hibbân and Sahih Abi Dawûd)
• Jihad against Satan (devil): struggling against what Satan whispers of doubts, suspicions, lusts and corruptions. Allah the Almighty said:
“And if an evil whisper from Satan tries to turn you away (from doing good), then seek refuge in Allâh. Verily, He is As-Samî‘ (All-Hearer), Al-‘Alîm (the All-Knower).”
The general Jihad is the real Jihad as long as the person struggles himself and against Satan, because it is a continuous Jihad throughout his life. In addition, all the righteous acts that Muslim do purely for the sake of Allah, are real Jihad, such as:
• Pilgrimage: to the House of Allah is Jihad, because of what it contains of hardship, patience and spending money for the sake of Allah. ‘Aishah (May Allah be pleased with her) reported:
“I said: ‘O Messenger of Allah! We women consider Jihad as the best deed, should we not then go for Jihad?’ The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said, ‘The best Jihad for you women is Pilgrimage that is accepted by Allah).’.”
• Speaking the truth: The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said:
‘‘The best jihad is (to speak) a word of justice to an oppressive ruler.”
(Sahih Abi Dawûd)
• Calling to Islam: Calling the non-Muslims to Islam, by introducing and explaining it to them, discussing with them, answering any misconceptions that they may have etc., is a real Jihad. Allah the Almighty said:
“And had We willed, We would have raised a warner in every town. * So obey not the disbelievers, but strive against them (by preaching) with the utmost endeavor with it (the Qur’ân).”
• Enjoining good and forbidding evil: This is the way of the Messengers and their followers after them. The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said:
“Never had a Prophet been sent before me by Allah to his people, but he had, among his people, disciples and companions, who followed his ways and obeyed his command. Then, there came after them their successors, who proclaimed what they had not practiced, and practiced what they were not commanded to do. And (he) who strove against them with his hand is a believer; he who strove against them with his tongue is a believer; and he who strove against them with his heart is a believer; and beyond that there is no grain of Faith".
• Kindness towards people: and not harming them, working on making them happy and being patient if they hurt you, is Jihad. The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said:
“The one who looks after a widow or a poor person is like a Mujahid (warrior) who fights for Allah's Cause, or like him who performs night prayers every night and fasts every day from sunrise until sunset.”
• Travel for seeking knowledge: is Jihad, the Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said:
“He who goes out (from his home or country) seeking knowledge, is considered as struggling in the Cause of Allah until he returns.”
• Teaching and educating: is Jihad. The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said:
“Whoever comes to this mosque of mine, and only comes to learn something good or to teach something good, his status is like the Mujahid who fights in the cause of Allah. Whoever comes for any other purpose, his status is that of a man who keeps an eye on other people's property.”
(Sahih ibn Mâjah)
• Kindness towards parents: is Jihad. A man came to ask the Prophet ((ﷺ to go to Jihad, so the Prophet ((ﷺ said:
“‘Are your parents alive?’ The man replied in the affirmative. The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said to him, "Then make Jihad by struggling yourself in their service.”
• Integrity: and guarding what one has been entrusted to do for the people or society are Jihad. The Prophet ((ﷺ said:
“The one who has been entrusted to do something, and he takes what is his right and gives the others what is their rights, his status is like the Mujahid who fights in the cause of Allah, until he goes back to his home.”
2. The Particular Jihad:
Is divided into two sections: (1. Defensive Jihad inside the Muslim country’s borders (Jihad Ad-Daf‘), 2. Jihad of delivering the Islamic Message outside the Muslim country’s borders (Jihad At-Tâlab))
“And what is wrong with you that you fight not in the Cause of Allâh, and for those weak, ill-treated and oppressed among men, women, and children, whose cry is: ‘Our Lord! Rescue us from this town whose people are oppressors; and raise for us from You one who will protect, and raise for us from You one who will help.’.”
Defensive jihad (Jihad Ad-Daf‘):
is divided into two sections:
1. External jihad: through defending against anyone who attacks the Muslim country, and kicking him away, and this is a legitimate right for every country. However, the war related to materialistic interests, like extending one’s power, demonstrating force or with the aim of retaliation, is forbidden by Islam.
2. Internal jihad: which is of two kinds:
- Jihad against individuals: through defending one’s self or another against an attacker who wants to steal, murder or attack. This jihad can be by the hand, meaning by pushing the attacker away and stopping him. If he cannot do it, then it can be by the tongue, meaning by talking to him. If he cannot do it, then by the heart, through denying this act in his heart, and this last type is very important, and its importance lies in the reviving of the heart, as through denying the injustice, it won’t get used to it. The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said:
“Whoever amongst you sees an evil, he must change it with his hand; if he is unable to do so, then with his tongue; and if he is unable to do so, then with his heart; and that is the least of Faith.”
- Jihad against groups: Through fighting against the Muslim transgressors’ group until they revert to the right path. Allah the Almighty said:
“And if two parties or groups among the believers fall into fighting, then make peace between them both. But if one of them outrages against the other, then fight you (all) against the one that outrages till it complies with the Command of Allâh. Then if it complies, then make reconciliation between them justly, and be equitable. Verily! Allâh loves those who are the equitable.”
This is the meaning of what the Prophet ((ﷺ said:
“‘Help your brother, whether he is an oppressor or he is oppressed.’ A man enquired: ‘O Messenger of Allah! I help him when he is oppressed, but how can I help him when he is an oppressor?’ He said, ‘By preventing him from oppressing others. That will be your help to him.’.”
- Jihad of delivering the Islamic Message (Jihad At-Tâlab):
In order to understand what the jihad of delivering the Islamic Message (Jihad At-Tâlab) is, we will present a few of the Prophet’s ((ﷺ letters, which he addressed to Heraclius, the Emperor of Byzantium and Cyrus (Al-Muqawqis), Patriarch of Alexandria, so we can look at the events from its background.
Letters of the Prophet ((ﷺ to defend the Christians:
The Prophet ((ﷺ criticized the injustice that the Christian sects did against each other, and their injustice towards themselves by associating partners with Allah in worship. He wrote that in his letter to Heraclius, Emperor of the Byzantines. His letter said:
“In the name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful, from Muhammad the Messenger of Allah, to Heraclius, chief of the Byzantines. Peace be upon those who follow the guidance. To proceed, I invite you to Islam, embrace Islam and you will be safe from Hell fire and from your previous sins; embrace Islam and Allah will bestow on you a double reward (because those of your followers who will embrace Islam too). But if you reject this invitation of Islam, you shall bear the sins of what happened to the Arians (the adherents of the doctrine of Arianism, who received persecution and murder from the Trinitarians). “O people of the Scripture (Jews and Christians): Come to a word that is just between us and you, that we worship none but Allâh (Alone), and that we associate no partners with Him, and that none of us shall take others as lords besides Allâh. Then, if they turn away, say: ‘Bear witness that we are Muslims.’.”.”
- Sahih Muslim)
He also addressed to Cyrus of Alexandria (Al-Muqawqis). His letter said:
“In the name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful, to Al-Muqawqis (Cyrus of Alexandria), chief of the Copts. Peace be upon those who follow the guidance. To proceed: I invite you to Islam, embrace Islam and you will be safe from Hell fire and from your previous sins; embrace Islam and Allah will bestow on you a double reward (because those of your followers who will embrace Islam too). If you reject Islam, you shall bear the sins of what happened to the Copts (from persecution and murder).”
(Zad al-Ma‘âd (3/603))
The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ indicated in the two letters to the massacres that occurred against the Arian sect and the Copts in Egypt and blamed Heraclius and Cyrus of Alexandria (Al-Muqawqis) for that.
What is worth mentioning, is that Arianism is not just a sect, but the whole Europe was Arian. The priest Jerome mentioned that by saying:
“The world awoke with a groan to find itself Arian!” 
Arianism was embraced by the Roman Empire through many of its Emperors who were Arians, it was also widespread in northern, eastern, central and western Europe through the embracing of the Arianism from many kings of Goths (Visigoth and Ostrogoth), and kings of Vandals, and kings of Suebi. Even Sir Isaac Newton was Arian.
But all those atrocities that occurred against Arians, many people tried to hide throughout the history! Even the books of Arius, the founder of Arianism, were burnt, and we don’t know what he was really saying except from the books of his enemies, who wrote against him that he was heretic and he was saying so and so.
For more information, you can revert to the books that mentioned some of the atrocities that have happened against the Arians.
- we mentioned earlier, the applicable rule in the old days around the world was “it is obligatory for the people to follow the religion of their kings, and no one can embrace the religion he believes in.” Therefore, the ‘Jihad of delivering the Islamic Message’ is the jihad, during which the army of Muslims goes out to deliver and spread the message of Islam to the people and to uphold the Word of Allah and to cancel the severe control of the tyrants, who impose their own religion on the people and prevent them from embracing any other religion they want, so Jihad is not to impose Islam on the people (as some may think), but it is to guarantee the freedom of faith, and more explanation to this will be given below.
At this type of jihad, the previous arrangement will be reversed, so it does not start from the hand, the tongue, and then the heart. It is first by the tongue, then by the hand.
The major conditions of Jihad of delivering the Islamic Message:
1. The permission of the Muslims’ ruler:
This Jihad must be made by the permission of the Muslims’ leader. The great Sheikh ‘Muhammad bin Uthaimeen’ said:
“The army cannot invade except with the permission of the ruler no matter what the situation is, because the addressees of jihad and invasion are the rulers and not individuals, given that the individuals are to follow their rulers. Therefore, no one should make Jihad without the permission of the ruler, unless it is for defense; if an enemy, surprises the Muslim people, then they defend themselves by fighting. So, Jihad is linked to the ruler, and any invasion without his permission is a violation on his rights. That’s because if the individuals were allowed to invade without the permission of the ruler, then the situation would turn into a mess. Anyone would ride on his horse and invade, and if people could do that, great evils would occur.’ 
Sheikh ibn Uthaimeen also mentioned an important condition for the Jihad, which is the ability. He said:
“It must be made under one condition: Muslims should have the ability and power to fight. If they do not have the ability, then entering the fight will lead them to destruction. Therefore, Allah the Almighty did not oblige Muslims to fight when they were in Mecca, because of their weakness. When they migrated to Medina, they formed the Muslim state and gained force, then they were ordered to fight. Therefore, this condition is obligatory, or else Jihad is dropped just like the rest of the duties, because all duties require ability, as a condition.” 
Stages of jihad:
The Jihad of delivering the Islamic Message has three stages that require gradation:
1. Inviting to Islam:
During this stage, the leader of Muslims sends an invitation to a certain king inviting him to Islam, and that king has the absolute freedom to accept embracing Islam or to stay on his religion.
2. Tax (Jizyah):
Tax (Jizyah) is an international system that has been applicable in the world in all civilizations from ancient times until today. It is a symbol of loyalty or truce and peace. Each country used to be either a country who collected taxes (certain amount of money) or a country who paid taxes to another. If a country stopped paying tax, then this meant that it stopped being loyal to it or in peace with it, and it was preparing to start a war against it.
The system of Tax (Jizyah) is still applicable, as the whole world is divided into many alliances. Each country from the great ones forms international alliances with the smaller countries, in order to support them politically or military, etc. In exchange, the great country gets advantages or financial benefits, for example: one of the loyal countries allows the great one to exploit a seaport on its territory in order to build a military base for itself. Alternatively, the great country might get the products of the other country such as diamonds, Uranium, Iron, or petrol in cheap prices or for free. Another option is to get special advantages for economic investments and so. All of that is considered a pledge of friendship and for the political and military support. if another country attacked the one loyal to one of the great countries, the great country would interfere military and defend it, and that is known as the system of Tax (Jizyah).
The king invited to embrace Islam has the right to reject the invitation and keep his authority, without being attacked or removed from his throne by anyone. He is asked to pay jizyah though, which is an amount of money in exchange for the protection he will get by the Muslim state. As long as his borders are joined to the borders of the Muslim state then the jizyah is considered as a truce between them, which, as we pointed out, is applicable around the world. It is like a symbol that he will not attack the Muslim state. If that country is attacked by another army, then the Muslims are obliged to defend it and to attack and fight the attacker.
What should also be mentioned is that the acceptance of the king to pay jizyah does not mean that he is free to do whatever he wants to his people, by enslaving them, suppressing them or forcing them to follow his religion. Also, he should not fight Islam or the Muslims, or prevent the Muslims from calling for Islam between his people. So, whoever wants to embrace Islam, whether he is a Christian or a Jew, he can do that without being oppressed, and whoever wants to stay on his religion he can also do it. Allah the Almighty said:
“And say: ‘The truth is from your Lord.’ Then whosoever wills, let him believe; and whosoever wills, let him disbelieve. Verily, We have prepared for the Zâlimûn (polytheists and wrong-doers.), a Fire whose walls will be surrounding them (disbelievers in the Oneness of Allâh). And if they ask for help (relief, water), they will be granted water like boiling oil, that will scald their faces. Terrible is the drink, and an evil Murtafaq (dwelling, resting place)!”
If the king refused what we mentioned, to embrace Islam or to pay jizyah, or if he oppressed his people, only then Muslims were allowed to fight against that king and his soldiers who fought with him. As for the people, they have nothing to do with it. Those of non-fighters are not to be killed. Women, children, elders, and monks are not to be attacked, and the same applies to whoever is peaceful in general.
Preventives of the jihad:
Jihad of delivering the Islamic Message has preventives; it is not always permissible.
1. Inability of Muslims to fight: due to their weakness or their small number.
2. Existence of a treaty with the other countries: Therefore, it cannot be violated. This is also seen in our days, as most of the world countries have many treaties and partnerships with each other.
3. Existence of an interest that requires that they should not fight even if they can: In this case, it should be observed, like what happened with the Treaty of Hudaybîya.
Objective of jihad:
It is often repeated in some media, which do not broadcast but poisoned news and do not announce but lies in order to achieve certain political agendas, that Jihad is considered as an invasion of the world in order for it to get under one government. This is untrue, as Allah the Almighty said:
- And if your Lord had so willed, He could surely have made mankind one Ummah [nation or community (following one religion i.e. Islâm)] but they will not cease to disagree. * Except him on whom your Lord has bestowed His Mercy (the follower of truth - Islâmic Monotheism) and for that did He create them. And the Word of your Lord has been fulfilled (i.e. His Saying): ‘Surely, I shall fill Hell with jinn and men all together.’.”
The real objectives of jihad are revealed by the saying of Allah the Almighty:
- Permission to fight (against disbelievers) is given to those (believers) who are fought against, because they have been wronged; and surely, Allâh is Able to give them (believers) victory. * Those who have been expelled from their homes unjustly only because they said: "Our Lord is Allâh." For had it not been that Allâh checks one set of people by means of another, monasteries, churches, synagogues, and mosques, wherein the Name of Allâh is mentioned much would surely have been pulled down. Verily, Allâh will help those who help His (Cause). Truly, Allâh is Qauei (All-Strong), ‘Azîz (All-Mighty). * Those (Muslim rulers) who, if We give them power in the land, (they) enjoin Iqamat-as-Salât (i.e. to perform the five compulsory congregational prayers), to pay the Zakât (annual compulsory charity for the poor) and they enjoin the good, and forbid the evil. And with Allâh rests the end of (all) matters (of creatures).”
- Al-Hajj 22:39-41)
Allah also said:
“And what is wrong with you that you fight not in the Cause of Allâh, and for those weak, ill-treated and oppressed among men, women, and children, whose cry is: ‘Our Lord! Rescue us from this town whose people are oppressors; and raise for us from You one who will protect, and raise for us from You one who will help.’.”
Therefore, we see that the objective of jihad is to defend the religion and the right, and to prevent the injustice, so Jihad benefit the Christians, Jews, and Muslims; it is not a defense that only benefits Muslims. If Allah the Almighty had not legitimized the elimination of injustice and falsehood through fighting (Jihad), then the truth would have been defeated, the earth would have been ruined, and the places of worship such as monasteries, churches of Christians, synagogues of Jews and the mosques of Muslims would have all been destroyed.
In the honorable Qur’anic Verse, we note the result of Jihad or what came after it, after the righteous people have won against the people of tyranny, injustice and falsehood. The verse clarifies that the Mujahedeen (Muslim fighters) should abide by the objective of Jihad, which is to reform and not to spread corruption; to perform prayer and not to be haughty in the land. To pay from their money Zakat (annual obligatory charity) for those who are eligible for it, such as the poor and the needy, and not to possess the money of people or their wealth, and to enjoin the good and forbid the evil.
Who is targeted by Jihad?
If Jihad is meant to protect the truth, uphold the word of Allah and protect the weak, then who is targeted by Jihad??! Allah the Almighty clarified those who are targeted by Jihad in His saying:
- Allâh does not forbid you to deal justly and kindly with those who fought not against you on account of religion nor drove you out of your homes. Verily, Allâh loves those who deal with equity. It is only as regards those who fought against you on account of religion, and have driven you out of your homes, and helped to drive you out, that Allâh forbids you to befriend them. And whosoever will befriend them, then such are the Zâlimûn (wrong-doers - those who disobey Allâh).”
Ibn ‘Abbas narrated:
- The pagans were of two kinds regarding their relationship to the Prophet ((ﷺ and the Believers. 1. People of war: so the Prophet ((ﷺ was at war against them; 2. People of treaty: neither did the Prophet ((ﷺ fight them, nor did they fight him.”
The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said:
“Whoever kills a Mu‘ahid (Christian or Jew who has a treaty with the Muslims or lives in a Muslim country or visits it) who has the protection of Allah and the protection of His Messenger, will not smell the fragrance of Paradise, even though its fragrance may be detected from a distance of Seventy years of walking.”
(Ibn-Mâjah – Sahih)
The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ also said:
“Indeed, whoever kills a Mu‘ahid (Christian or Jew who has a treaty with the Muslims or lives in a Muslim country or visits it) that has a covenant from Allah and a covenant from His Messenger (ﷺ), indeed he has violated the covenant of Allah and the covenant of His Messenger, so he shall not smell the fragrance of Paradise; even though its fragrance can be sensed from the distance of seventy autumns walking.”
(At-Tîrmidhi – Sahih)
The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ also said:
“You will soon conquer Egypt where Al-Qirat (name of currency that was used by Egyptians) is frequently mentioned. So when you conquer it, treat its inhabitants very well. For they have upon you rights and they have with you blood ties (i.e. relationship, because Prophet Ismael (Ishmael) the father of the Arabs, was the son of prophet Abraham from Hagar the Egyptian women).”
Mujahid (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated:
“Abd Allah bin Amr had a sheep slaughtered for his family, so when he came he said: ‘Have you given some to our neighbor, the Jew? Have you given some to our neighbor, the Jew? I heard the Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ saying: ‘The angel Jibril continued to urge me about (treating) the neighbors so (kindly and politely), that I thought he would order me (from Allah) to make them heirs.”
What the Christian’s books wrote about Muslims and Jihad:
- will now see what the books of Christians mentioned regarding how Muslims were tolerant towards them and did not persecute them. The ‘Synaxarium’ book, which is the one of the most important books of the Coptic Orthodox Church and it contains the biographies of the Prophets, the martyrs and the saints, mentioned the story of ‘Amr ibn Al-‘As (may Allah be pleased with him) and the Pope Benjamin I of Alexandria. Through it, we will see who is targeted by Jihad and how Muslims deal with the Christians and we will see who the one who really persecuted the Christians is! It said:
“Because of the massacres of the Byzantine Empire and their persecution against the Egyptian Copts, the Pope Benjamin I of Alexandria had to escape along with his bishops to the mountains for 13 years. After the Muslim conquest of Egypt
by ‘Amr ibn al-‘As, who went towards the city of Alexandria to fight the Byzantines there to kick them out of it. but, inside Alexandria riots and disorder happened; some of the bad people took the advantage of this situation and burnt churches and monasteries. Saint Mark's Coptic Orthodox Cathedral was one of them. They stole everything that was in it, a sailor man entered the church and put his hand inside the coffin of Saint Mark thinking it had money, he did not find anything except the mummy of Saint Mark and he took his clothes. He also took the head of Saint Mark and hid it in his ship. When ‘Amr ibn Al-‘As learnt about the escaping of the Pope Benjamin I, for thirteen years because of the persecution, he sent letters to all the Egyptian cities saying: ‘Wherever Benjamin the Patriarch of Christians Copts is, we are giving him our promise of safeguard, safety and peace. We are calling him to come reassured and without fearing anything, to manage his churches and people.’ Then the Pope came after he spent thirteen years on the run. ‘Amr ibn Al-‘As honored him with great respect and ordered that he receive his churches and their properties. When the army of ‘Amr was leaving Alexandria, heading to the five cities, they saw one ship that had stopped and did not move from its place. The army interrogated the captain and searched the ship; they found the head of Saint Mark. Then, they called Pope Benjamin; he carried it and walked with the priests and the people while they were joyfully singing hymns until they reached the church.”.
Gradation of the regulation of Jihad from prevention to obligation:
1. Prevention of fight: Jihad through fighting was prohibited on Muslims at the beginning of Islam, Allah the Almighty said:
- Have you not seen those who were told to hold back their hands (from fighting) and perform prayer, and give Zakât (annual obligatory charity for the poor).”
2. Permission to fight: then the Muslims were allowed to do Jihad when the polytheists started persecuting them and forcing them to leave their homes. Allah the Almighty said:
- Permission to fight (against disbelievers) is given to those (believers) who are fought against, because they have been wronged; and surely, Allâh is Able to give them (believers) victory. * Those who have been expelled from their homes unjustly only because they said: ‘Our Lord is Allâh’.”
- Al-Hajj 22:39-40)
3. Defense through fight: then the Muslims were ordered to defend themselves through Jihad, when the polytheists attack them. Allah the Almighty said:
- And fight in the Way of Allâh those who fight you, but transgress not the limits. Truly, Allâh likes not the transgressors.”
- Al-Bâqarah 2:190)
4. Order to fight: when Islam became strong and was spread and the number of people who embraced Islam was increased, its exterior enemies from the neighboring to the Muslim state countries were increased as well, as they saw in it a great danger. Allah the Almighty ordered Muslims to do Jihad, in order to deliver the message of Islam to the nations, with the aim of upholding the Word of Allah, achieving justice and spreading it, not expanding, controlling, extending influences, being superior or being arrogant on the land. Not with the aim of taking revenge which only results in ruin and destruction. Allah the Almighty said:
- And be not like those who come out of their homes boastfully and to be seen of men, and hinder (men) from the Path of Allâh; and Allâh is Muhîtun (encircling and thoroughly comprehending) all that they do.”
The Qur’an demonstrated the persecution caused by the polytheists against the believers from Christians before the advent of Islam. Allah immortalized the story of their persecution in the Noble Qur’an to show that the actual goal is to push injustice away from the believers, whether they are Christians, Jews or Muslims. Allah the Almighty said:
“Cursed were the people of the Ditch. * Of fire fed with fuel, * When they sat by it (fire), * And they witnessed what they were doing against the believers (i.e. burning them). * And they had no fault except that they believed in Allâh, Al-‘Azîz (the All-Mighty), Al-Hameed (Worthy of all Praise)!”
These Verses were revealed in the Noble Qur’an to immortalize the story of the believers from the Christians of Yemen whom lived before the mission of the Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ. They were tortured from the people of their town because they believed in Allah the Almighty. They dug a huge ditch, and lit fire inside it, and then they give them the choice between to abandon their religion or to be thrown in the fire. So they were thrown in the fire, because of their faith in Allah the Almighty. Then they sat on the ditch watching them suffering and burning.
Regulations of Jihad in Islam:
Jihad in Islam has its regulations and ethics which uplift it from injustice, iniquity and violation. Therefore, no one from the enemies is killed except for the ones who joined the fight or helped with it. It is forbidden to kill the elders, the women, the children, the sick, the wounded, the prisoners, the clerics and the monks! It is also forbidden to kill the wounded in the battle, mutilate the dead, chase the ones who run away from the battle, kill animals, ruin houses, expose any place of worship in danger, pollute the water or the wells, cut trees or burn them… etc.
These were as well the directions and orders of the honorable Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ and his successors after him towards the armies they sent for Jihad. It is what we see in the testament of the Messenger of Allah’s ((ﷺ successor, Abu Bakr As-Siddîq –may Allah be pleased with him- to the leaders of the armies:
“I command you ten things, so you must memorize them after me: do not betray, do not deceive in the spoil, do not break a pact, do not mutilate the dead, do not kill a small child, do not kill an elder or a woman, do not cut or burn palm trees, do not cut down a fruitful tree, do not slaughter a lamb, a cow or a camel except when wanting to eat them. You will pass by people (i.e. monks) who freed themselves to stay in monasteries for worship, leave them as they are (i.e. don’t bother them).”
In Islam, the prisoners of war have rights. It is not permissible to torture, humiliate, terrorize them or deprive them of food or drink until they die, on the contrary, they should get a kindly treatment. Allah the Almighty said:
“And they give food, inspite of their love for it (or for the love of Him), to the poor, the orphan, and the captive, * (Saying): ‘We feed you seeking Allâh’s Countenance only. We wish for no reward, nor thanks from you.’.”
The Muslim state has the right to deal with the prisoners according to what the public interest and the international agreements require. They can be released with or without ransom or in exchange of Muslim prisoners.
As for the public of non-Muslims in the country which the Muslims went to, the Islam prohibited their being attacked, assaulted or hurt in anyway, as the Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said:
“Whoever kills a Mu‘âhid (Christian or Jew who has a treaty with the Muslims or lives in a Muslim country or visits it) who has the protection of Allah and the protection of His Messenger, will not smell the fragrance of Paradise, even though its fragrance may be detected from a distance of Seventy years of walking.”
It also prohibited to get from their dignity, so they are not to be humiliated or degraded, oppressed or persecuted, as the Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said:
“If anyone wrongs a Mu‘ahid (Christian or Jew who has a treaty with the Muslims or lives in a Muslim country or visits it), or diminishes his right, or forces him to work beyond his capacity, or takes from him anything without his consent, I shall plead for him on the Day of Judgment.”
The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ used to recommend his companions of Mujahidin to be kind toward the people of any country they go and treat them nicely. He said:
“You will soon conquer Egypt where Al-Qirat (name of currency that was used by Egyptians) is frequently mentioned. So when you conquer it, treat its inhabitants very well. For they have upon you rights and they have with you blood ties (i.e. relationship, because Prophet Ismael (Ishmael) the father of the Arabs, was the son of prophet Abraham from Hagar the Egyptian women).”
The poof of carrying out the Messenger of Allah’s ((ﷺ will, is the promise Umar ibn Al-Khattab –may Allah be pleased with him- gave to the people of Jerusalem, when he entered it as a conqueror, he said:
“In the Name of Allah, Ar-Rahman (the Most Gracious), Ar-Raheem (the Most Merciful). This is what the salve of Allah Umar ibn Al-Khattab promises to the people of Jerusalem of safeguard: I give them safeguard on themselves, their money, their churches and their crosses… they shall not receive any persecution regarding their religion, and not one of them shall get any harm.”
Has the history ever witnessed such nobility, justice and tolerance from a victorious winner towards a defeated one? However, he –May Allah be pleased with him- could have commanded them to do whatever he wanted! But it is about justice, seeking to spread the religion of Allah and loving good for all people. This indicates that Jihad in Islam is not intended to worldly interests.
Is every war from Muslims considered Jihad?
It needs to be taken into consideration that not every war any Muslim country does is considered Jihad, and not every Muslim person who fights is considered Mujahid (fighter). That is because Jihad has conditions, and we as Muslims differentiate between the term ‘Jihad’ and the term ‘war’, but the media today try to ruin the image of Islam through distorting the meaning of Jihad and present it as a barbarian war, in order to achieve certain political agenda. So, the media look for any ongoing war in the world, if it is between two Christian countries, then they say: “A war broke out between this country and that one”, and they don’t relate that war to the religion of the fighters. However, if one of the parties is Muslim, they say: “Extremist Muslims Mujahidin declare the Holy war (Jihad) on a Christian country.” The question is: who gave them the authority to ascribe the term ‘Jihad’ on that war or the term ‘Mujahidin’ on those fighters??
In order for them to know if that war is Jihad and if those fighters are Mujahidin, they have to put the goals of Jihad, its morals and conditions in front of their eyes and see if they are applied in that war or not! It needs also to be taken into consideration that there are many political considerations that rule the world and the relations among countries, which are away from the name of Jihad, since they are wars of interests. For example:
1- Crimean War: in 1853 between the Russian Empire and the Ottoman Empire. The United Kingdom and France entered the war against Russia to support their alliance with the Ottoman Empire, because of political considerations and not religious ones, as all of Russia, the United Kingdom and France were Christian countries while the Ottoman Empire was Muslim country.
2- In 1854, Greece, which was under the rule of the Ottoman Empire at that time, took an advantage of the Crimean War between Russia and the Turks. Thus, they made the Epirus Revolt against the Turks in order to get them out of Greece. Therefore, it was France and the United Kingdom which suppressed that revolt, surrounding the main ports of Greece and preventing the entrance of the supplies. In addition, they suppressed the participants in that revolt, so that Greece would remain under the Ottoman rule!!
The Holy war:
Is Jihad in Islam a Holy war through which people are enforced to leave their religion and embrace Islam? The answer is: ‘Of course not, because there are clear texts in the Noble Qur’an that prohibit forcing people to leave their religion and beliefs in order to embrace Islam, Allah the Almighty said:
“There is no compulsion in religion. Verily, the Right Path has become distinct from the wrong path.”
The purpose of Jihad is to deliver the message of Islam to the people and not to coerce them into embracing it. As Allah the Almighty said:
“So if they dispute with you (Muhammad) say: "I have submitted myself to Allâh (in Islâm), and (so have) those who follow me." And say to those who were given the Scripture (Jews and Christians) and to those who are illiterates (Arab pagans): "Do you (also) submit yourselves (to Allâh in Islâm)?" If they do, they are rightly guided; but if they turn away, your duty is only to convey the Message; and Allâh is All-Seer of (His) slaves.”
The reason of prohibiting coercion is that, guiding to the right religion, knowing it, and following it, is a bestowal from Allah that He chooses to give to whoever He wants from His slaves, not by force or obligation. Allah said:
“Not upon you (Muhammad) is their guidance, but Allâh guides whom He wills.”
Therefore, it is not permissible to force non-Muslims from Jews and Christians to embrace Islam, and if that happens, their Islam is then untrue. The condition of embracing Islam is that it has to be voluntarily and from one’s own will, not by coercion or enforcing. Someone might argue, ‘but we see on channels reports about an attack on a church in a country that has an ongoing war’, so we tell him: ‘the report could be true and could not be true, and if it is true, how many mosques have been ruined and attacked in that country as well?’ If he also says that some Christians have been killed, we say ‘how many Muslims have been exterminated in that country as well?’! When you speak of a country that has an ongoing rough war, then it is normal for such things that have nothing to do with Islam and its teachings to happen.
Therefore, that war is not Jihad. The reason it is not called Jihad is that many people were forced to emigrate or were killed. Furthermore, many houses of worship were demolished. Jihad is against all of these and does not acknowledge them.
Difference between a war and Jihad:
The difference between a war and Jihad is clarified when look into some of the wars that have been conducted throughout history, from which:
-Alexander the Great: Alexander the Great has gained the respect of all nations and world countries as an internationally influential and major figure. He fought many battles in order to expand his kingdom, until the Greek Empire reached India.
- Genghis Khan: he established the biggest Empire in the world that after his death was extended from China until the East of Europe in Poland and other countries. He has many statues in several countries, and he is respected by many nations.
- he invaded Europe until his Empire’s borders conjoined many European countries.
- The British Empire: (the empire on which the sun never sets) its colonies extended from the Far East until the Far West. This is the reason why it was called empire on which the sun never sets.
-The French, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian and Japanese colonies: they extended from the East until the West to expand their authority and power.
The common thing between all these Empires and all the wars they fought, is that they were seeking to capture the wealth and territories of the other countries, to extend their power and authority around the world. Another common thing between those wars, is that their result was the destruction of many civilizations, the slaughter and enslavement of nations, leaving millions of victims behind. This is what history has proven and showed us. Genghis Khan is considered a national hero in his country, but he and his grandson Hulagu are seen as war criminals in the countries they invaded. They crushed nations, spread corruption and destruction. Hulagu destroyed the ‘House of Wisdom’, its books and scientific manuscripts that are priceless. Now, in order to know the difference between those wars and Jihad, we need to compare the goals of these wars, their results and morals with the goals, results and morals of Jihad! Jihad is what stopped that tyranny and protected the Muslim and non-Muslim civilians.
Jihad in the Bible
(Jihad in Christianity and Judaism)
Before mentioning some of the texts of the Old Testament about Jihad, we will mention Paul’s quotes from the New Testament, where he praised the Jihad mentioned in the Old Testament and considerably complimented everything that was done during those wars, like the killing of unarmed civilians!
Paul say in his Letter to Hebrews: (11:30-34): (30By faith the walls of Jericho fell down after they were encircled for seven days. 31By faith the harlot Rahab did not perish with those who did not believe, when she had received the spies with peace. 32And what more shall I say? For the time would fail me to tell of Gideon and Barak and Samson and Jephthah, also of David and Samuel and the prophets. 33who through faith subdued kingdoms, worked righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions. 34quenched the violence of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, out of weakness were made strong, became valiant in battle, turned to fight the armies of the aliens.)
Now let us see through the Old Testament what happened after the walls of Jericho fell down, an action which Paul mentioned and considerably complimented in his previous message!!
Joshua (6:16-24): (16And the seventh time it happened, when the priests blew the trumpets, that Joshua said to the people: "Shout, for the Lord has given you the city! 17Now the city shall be doomed by the Lord to destruction, it and all who are in it. Only Rahab the harlot shall live, she and all who are with her in the house, because she hid the messengers that we sent. 18 And you, by all means abstain from the accursed things, lest you become accursed when you take of the accursed things, and make the camp of Israel a curse, and trouble it. 19 But all the silver and gold, and vessels of bronze and iron, are consecrated to the Lord; they shall come into the treasury of the Lord." 20 So the people shouted when the priests blew the trumpets. And it happened when the people heard the sound of the trumpet, and the people shouted with a great shout, that the wall fell down flat. Then the people went up into the city, every man straight before him, and they took the city. 21 And they utterly destroyed all that was in the city, both man and woman, young and old, ox and sheep and donkey, with the edge of the sword… 24 But they burned the city and all that was in it with fire(
They did not only kill every soul of man, women and children, even the animals, they burned the whole city with fire!!!
1 Samuel (15:3): (3 Now go and attack Amalek, and utterly destroy all that they have, and do not spare them. But kill both man and woman, infant and nursing child, ox and sheep, camel and donkey.)
Hosea (13:16): (16 Samaria is held guilty, for she has rebelled against her God. They shall fall by the sword, their infants shall be dashed in pieces, and their women with child ripped open.)
Isaiah (13:15-16): (15 Everyone who is found will be thrust through, And everyone who is captured will fall by the sword. 16 Their children also will be dashed to pieces before their eyes; Their houses will be plundered and their wives ravished.)
2 Samuel (4:12): (12 So David commanded his young men, and they executed them, cut off their hands and feet, and hanged them by the pool in Hebron.)
1 Chronicles (20:3): (3 And he brought out the people that were in it, and cut them with saws, and with harrows of iron, and with axes. Even so dealt David with all the cities of the children of Ammon.)
Immoderation and extremism between Islamic Sharia and man-made law
• The Islamic Sharia and combating immoderation and extremism.
• Monasticism in Christianity:
1. Celibacy is better than marriage:
2. No divorcing:
• Islam and combating the slavery system
• The slavery system in the Bible
• Islam and combating racism
• The Islamic Sharia and its legalization of enjoying the life and constructing on the earth.
Immoderation and extremism between Islamic Sharia and man-made law
The Islamic Sharia and combating immoderation and extremism
Allah (Glorified and Exalted be He) sent Muhammad ((ﷺ and revealed the Sharia to him, which is a mercy for all humankind. Allah the Almighty said:
“And We have sent you (O Muhammad): not but as a mercy for the ‘Âlamîn (mankind, jinn and all that exists)”
He sent the Messenger ((ﷺ as a mercy for them in all their affairs, a mercy for themselves and for their souls that used to either worship idols (or icons or crosses) which could not benefit or harm them, or associate other slaves or creatures (like Jesus or Buda) in the worship of Allah, so Allah guided them to worship Him, the Almighty, alone and not associate partners with Him in worship.
And He also sent him as a mercy for their bodies, as some foods and drinks, which can cause damage to the bodies, are prohibited. Allah the Almighty said:
“Say (O Muhammad): "I find not in that which has been revealed to me anything forbidden to be eaten by one who wishes to eat it, unless it be Maitah (a dead animal) or blood poured forth (by slaughtering or the like), or the flesh of swine (pork); for that surely is impure or impious (unlawful) meat (of an animal) which is slaughtered as a sacrifice for others than Allâh (or has been slaughtered for idols, or on which Allâh’s Name has not been mentioned while slaughtering). But whosoever is forced by necessity without willful disobedience, nor transgressing due limits; (for him) certainly, your Lord is Ghafûr (Oft-Forgiving), Rahîm (Most Merciful).”
As a mercy for them regarding their finances, as Allah the Almighty has forbidden them to take money unjustly or if it is the result of cheating or eating up other’s property unjustly. Allah the Almighty said:
“And eat up not one another’s property unjustly (in any illegal way e.g. stealing, robbing, deceiving, etc.), nor give bribery to the rulers (judges before presenting your cases) that you may knowingly eat up a part of the property of others sinfully.”
Allah has ordained the rules that regulate their life affairs, leading them into a straight path that has no immoderation or dereliction. Allah the Almighty said:
“He (Allâh) has ordained for you the same religion (Islâmic Monotheism) which He ordained for Nûh (Noah), and that which We have revealed to you (O Muhammad), and that which We ordained for Ibrâhîm (Abraham), Mûsâ (Moses) and ‘Îsâ (Jesus) saying you should establish religion (i.e. to do what it orders you to do practically), and make no divisions in it (religion) (i.e. various sects in religion). Intolerable for the Mushrikûn, is that (Islamic Monotheism) to which you (O Muhammad) call them. Allâh chooses for Himself whom He wills, and guides unto Himself who turns to Him in repentance and in obedience.”
Allah the Almighty sent with him the Sharia of mercy. Allah the Almighty said:
“And by the Mercy of Allâh, you dealt with them gently. And had you been severe and harsh-hearted, they would have broken away from about you; so pass over (their faults), and ask (Allâh’s) Forgiveness for them; and consult them in the affairs. Then when you have taken a decision, put your trust in Allâh, certainly, Allâh loves those who put their trust (in Him).”
The Sharia of gentleness and leniency. Allah bestowed His Grace upon the humankind by sending them His Messenger, saying:
“Verily, there has come unto you a Messenger (Muhammad) from amongst yourselves (i.e. whom you know well). It grieves him that you should receive any injury or difficulty. He (Muhammad) is anxious over you (to be rightly guided, to repent to Allâh, and beg Him to pardon and forgive your sins in order that you may enter Paradise and be saved from the punishment of the Hell-fire); for the believers (he is) full of pity, kind, and merciful.”
Two of the qualities of this Sharia are its tolerance and easiness, so it has no Intransigence or hardship. Allah the Almighty says:
“Allâh burdens not a person beyond his ability. He gets reward for that (good) which he has earned, and he is punished for that (evil) which he has earned.”
The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ says:
“If I forbid you to do something, then keep away from it. And if I order you to do something, then do of it as much as you can (i.e. according to your your ability and capacity).”
His wife, (the mother of the believers) A’isha –may Allah be pleased with her- said about him:
“Whenever the Prophet (ﷺ) was given a choice between two matters, he would (always) choose the easier as long as it was not sinful to do so; but if it was sinful he was most strict in avoiding it.”
Allah sent him with a Sharia that fought all forms of immoderation and extremism, through clear legitimate texts that warned people against carelessness or immoderation in the religion, like those before them did, as Allah the Almighty said:
“Say (O Muhammad): ‘O people of the Scripture (Jews and Christians)! Exceed not the limits in your religion (by believing in something) other than the truth, and do not follow the vain desires of people who went astray before and who misled many, and strayed (themselves) from the Right Path.’.”
• He prohibited immoderation and extremism in the religion, as the Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ warned strongly against them. The Prophet ((ﷺ said:
“Beware of immoderation (and extremism) in religious matters, for those who came before you were destroyed because of their immoderation (and extremism) in religious matters."
• He also prohibited immoderation and extremism in worship. Anas (May Allah be pleased with him) reported:
“Three men came to the Prophet’s wives’ houses to inquire about the Prophet’s worship. When they were informed, they considered his worship little (i.e. less than they imagined) and said: "Where are we in comparison with the Prophet? while Allah has forgiven his past and future sins! (i.e. we need to worship more)". One of them said: "As for me, I shall offer prayer all night long." Another said: "I shall observe Sâum (fasting) every day from sunrise to sunset and shall not break it for any day". Another said: "I shall abstain from women and shall never marry". The Prophet ((ﷺ came to them and said, "Are you the people who said such and such things? By Allah, I fear Allah more than you do, and I am the most obedient and dutiful among you to Him, but still I observe fast and break it (i.e. I don’t fast everyday), perform the night prayer (at one part of the night) and sleep at (the rest of the) night, and marry women. So, whoever turns away from my Sunnah (tradition) does not belong to me.”
He ((ﷺ also said:
“The religion (of Islam) is easy, and whoever makes the religion a rigor, it will overpower him.”
• He prohibited as well toughness, inflexibility, immoderation and extremism when treating others. He ((ﷺ said:
“May Allah show mercy to a man who adopts a kind attitude when he sells, buys and demands for the repayment of loans.”
• He prohibited toughness and immoderation when calling others to Islam. He ((ﷺ said:
“Facilitate things to people (concerning religious matters), and do not make it hard for them and give them good tidings and do not make them run away (from Islam).”
Monasticism in Christianity:
There is no monasticism in Islam or ecclesiastical hierarchy like there are in the other religions. Allah the Almighty disowned this act of the people of previous faiths. Allah the Almighty said:
“Then, We sent after them Our Messengers, and We sent ‘Îsâ (Jesus) - son of Maryam (Mary), and gave him the Injeel (Gospel). And We ordained in the hearts of those who followed him compassion and mercy. But the monasticism which they invented for themselves, We did not prescribe for them, but (they sought it) only to please Allâh therewith, but they did not observe it with the right observance. So We gave those among them who believed their (due) reward; but many of them are Fâsiqûn (rebellious, disobedient to Allâh).”
The Prophet ((ﷺ strongly warned against that. He ((ﷺ said:
“Do not impose austerities on yourselves, so that austerities will not be imposed on you, for people have imposed austerities on themselves and Allah imposed austerities on them. Their survivors are to be found in hermitages and monasteries. (Then he quoted :) “Monasticism, they invented it; we did not prescribe it for them.”.”
(Sunnan Abi Dawûd)
Keep in mind that Jesus Christ, peace be upon him, was not a monk nor did he prescribe monasticism to his followers. He ordered his students to go to the nations to spread the religion of Allah and guide them to the Right religion (at that time, before Christians distorted their religion).
The scholar in Islam has a great responsibility. He needs to socialize with people, command them to do the good and forbid them to do the evil and guide them to the right path, as the Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said:
“Convey from me even an Ayah (Verse) of the Qur'an.”
He should also be a productive member of society and a good example for them. The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said:
“A believer who mixes with people and endures their annoyance is better than the one who does not mix with them and does not endure their annoyance.”
(Al-Bukhâri in Al-Âdab al-Mûfrad)
He should not be dependent upon others and ask for their help in earning his living, as the prophets, peace be upon them, used to work on their own, herd the sheep to make money for themselves and their families. The prophet Muhammad ((ﷺ was once asked:
“Have you ever shepherded sheep?" He said, "There has been no prophet who has not shepherded them."
Celibacy is better than marriage:
Paul says in 1 Corinthians (7:1-8): “1 Now concerning the things about which you wrote to me: it is good for a man not to touch a woman… 8 But I say to the unmarried and to widows, it is good for them if they remain even as I am (i.e. celibate).”
Of course, these are the teaching of Paul himself and not the teachings of Jesus Christ, peace be upon him, because they are against the instinct Allah has created humans with. Marriage is the tradition of the prophets, peace be upon them, and Allah the Almighty said:
“And indeed We sent Messengers before you (O Muhammad) and made for them wives and offspring. And it was not for a Messenger to bring a sign except by Allâh’s Leave. (For) every matter there is a Decree (from Allâh).”
Do the civilized societies agree with the words of Paul, that people shouldn’t marry or get children? Those words have only one result, which is the destruction of the humankind! Did Allah the Almighty want us to become extinct or build on the land and grow in it?
All of that is against the command of Allah the Almighty, Who said:
“And it is He Who has made you generations coming after generations, replacing each other on the earth. And He has raised you in ranks, some above others that He may try you in that which He has bestowed on you. Surely your Lord is Swift in retribution, and certainly He is Ghafûr (Oft-Forgiving), Rahîm (Most Merciful).”
If someone demands celibacy from people and that they not be married, this will clash with the instinct inside them. It is a lust inside the human, like the lust of food and drink, but the Sharia of Islam made that lust to get satisfaction legally through marriage. Through that, affection, mercy and psychological stability occur for both partners in addition to the maintaining of the human race. Allah the Almighty said:
“And among His Signs is this, that He created for you wives from among yourselves, that you may find repose in them, and He has put between you affection and mercy. Verily, in that are indeed signs for a people who reflect.”
The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ used to call for marriage, urge others to marry, and strongly forbid celibacy. Ηe ((ﷺ said:
“Marry the one who is fertile and loving, for I will boast (about it) in front of the prophets in the Day of Judgment.”
(Sahih Ibn Hibbân)
The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ also encouraged the youth to get married to cut the path of immorality, because lust at the young age is found at its peak. The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said:
“O young men, whoever among you can afford the marriage (financially and physically), let him get married, for it is more effective in lowering the gaze and protecting one's chastity. Whoever cannot afford it should fast, for it will be protectant for him from falling in immorality."
(Al-Bukhâri and Muslim)
What is greater than that is that he made marriage a way to earn good deeds and reward. Therefore, the Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said:
“‘When a man has sexual intercourse (with his wife) he gets a reward of Sâdaqah (charity).’ They (the Companions) said: ‘O Messenger of Allah, when one of us satisfies his desire (with his wife) does he get a reward for that?’ He said: ‘You see, if he were to satisfy it illegally (with a woman who is not his wife), would it not be a sin on his part? Similarly, if he were to satisfy it legally, he should be rewarded.’.”
Gospel of Matthew (5:31-32): (31It was also said, ‘Whoever shall put away his wife, let him give her a writing of divorce,’ 32 but I tell you that whoever puts away his wife, except for the cause of sexual immorality, makes her an adulteress; and whoever marries her when she is put away commits adultery.)
Did the civilized societies agree not to divorce or does the highest rate of divorces actually exist in many developed countries?! Were the Christians able to follow those teachings or did they consider them immoderate and inflexible?!
The practical reality says that there are many marriages that cannot last, and if such marriage continues despite the problems it has, then it will cause big harm and damage for both the husband and the wife, such harm that cannot be stopped but through a divorce. We read in the newspapers about some cases of women who murder their Christian husbands as a way of getting rid of them, because of their inability to get a divorce!
However, Islam permitted divorce in order to facilitate people when the companionship is impossible. Therefore, they separate from each other in a civilized way and marry whomever they want. Allah the Almighty said:
“Either hold them in marriage in a good manner or part with them in a good manner.”
In the meantime, all the civilized countries followed the Islamic Sharia in that it permitted and codified the divorce and made it a civil divorce, away from the church’s authority that refuses divorce as a matter.
The beheadings of the enemies or the mutilation of the dead bodies are forbidden to be done in Islam.
‘Amr ibn Al-‘As and Shurahabil bin Hâsana sent ‘Ûqba to Abu Bakr carrying the head of Yianaq, one of the biggest enemies, when ‘Ûqba entered at Abu Bakr and presented what he had to him, Abu Bakr condemned this action. ‘Ûqba said to him: ‘O, Caliph, the Byzantines do the same at us (i.e. beheading the Muslims who fall into capture)!’ Then Abu Bakr said to him: ‘Are you following the example of the Persians and the Byzantines?!! No head should be carried to me. Suffice to send me the news only.’
(Ibn Hâjar Al-‘Asqalâni)
Some TV presenters of the Western media nowadays trying to attribute beheadings to Muslims. If these presenters refer back to history and read it, they will find that the opposite is the truth. How many beheadings were made in their countries until only some years ago? For example, we have seen a statue of a knight who holds a man’s head that he himself cut off, and in his other hand he holds a long sword, on the external walls of the Milano church. Have we seen such a sculpture on the walls of any mosque?! Sure NO.
Regarding what is seen from those few Muslims who publically slaughter some people and cut their heads off, this only represents personal individual acts that have nothing to do with Sharia. The objective of such an act is to achieve a dirty political agenda, to distort the picture of Islam and to keep the people away from it. Those people are well funded by third parties to do a movie scene with their expensive professional cameras, filming for example how they murder an innocent journalist, who had done nothing wrong and had never fought against them. Such people are spreading destruction in the land and not construction and peace. Allah says:
“And when he turns away, his effort in the land is to make mischief therein and to destroy the crops and the cattle, and Allâh likes not mischief.”
Someone may say: ‘But what about the flags these people are carrying and on which some Islamic phrases are written, isn’t this considered a proof that they are representing Islam?’. We answer to that by saying: ‘If someone has a small cheap car and he brings a logo of Mercedes car and sticks it on it, will this make his car a Mercedes?’ Sure NO. You have to compare their acts and the Islamic teachings, to find that they are away from each other.
Allah the Almighty say:
“And if you punish (your enemy, O you believers in the Oneness of Allâh), then punish them with the like of that with which you were afflicted. But if you endure patiently, verily, it is better for As-Sâbirûn (the patient).”
Islam and combating the slavery system
Islam fought the slavery system in every way. It commanded the liberation of slaves, and it promised a great reward for those who liberated their slaves, as this is also considered a reason to enter Paradise. The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ says:
“He who emancipates a slave, Allah will set free from Hell every limb (of his body) for every limb of his (slave's) body, even his private parts.”
Islam though did not prohibit the slavery system so that it would not completely collide with the practical reality; it was an international system which every country used, being an economic and financial system upon which every society depended. Similarly, Jesus Christ, peace be upon him, did not prohibit the slavery system. Islam prohibited every method through which people were enslaved, except for one method which is captivity during war. And that only on one condition, that if the Muslims’ leader wanted to impose slavery upon them. And since Islam narrowed down all the sources of slavery and made it possible only through one way, it also expanded the ways of liberation. Therefore, it made liberation an act of expiation for many sins the Muslim has committed, such as:
• Manslaughter: Allah the Almighty said:
“It is not for a believer to kill a believer except (that it be) by mistake; and whosoever kills a believer by mistake, (it is ordained that) he must set free a believing slave and a compensation (blood-money) be given to the deceased’s family unless they remit it. If the deceased belonged to a people at war with you and he was a believer, the freeing of a believing slave (is prescribed); and if he belonged to a people with whom you have a treaty of mutual alliance, compensation (blood-money) must be paid to his family, and a believing slave must be freed.”
• Perjury: Allah the Almighty said:
“Allâh will not punish you for what is unintentional in your oaths, but He will punish you for your deliberate oaths; for its expiation feed ten poor persons, on a scale of the average of that with which you feed your own families, or clothe them or manumit a slave”
• Az-Zihâr: Allah the Almighty say:
“And those who make unlawful to them their wives by Zihâr and wish to free themselves from what they uttered, (the penalty) in that case is the freeing of a slave before they touch each other.”
• Intercourse during Ramadan:
Abu Huraira reported that a person had intercourse with his wife during Ramadan (while fasting). He asked for the religious verdict (about it) from the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ), whereupon the Prophet (ﷺ) said:
‘Can you find a slave (or captive) (to grant him freedom)?’ He said: ‘No.’ The Prophet (ﷺ) said: ‘Can you afford to observe fasts for two (consecutive) months?’ He said: ‘No.’ The Prophet (ﷺ) said: ‘Then feed sixty poor men.’
• Beating a slave: The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said:
“He who slaps his slave or beats him, the expiation for it is that he should set him free.”
What also confirms how concerned Islam is regarding the liberation of slaves is:
1- It legislated the contract of Al-Mukatabah: which is a contract between the owner and the slave, according to which the slave is freed in exchange for an amount of money agreed upon by them both.
Whenever the slave asks for his freedom, the owner must accept, and then both sign such contract. This is shown in the saying of Allah the Almighty:
“And those of your slaves who seek a writing (of emancipation), give them such writing, if you find that there is good and honesty in them. And give them something (yourselves) out of the wealth of Allâh which He has bestowed upon you.”
2- It legislated that people can spend their Zaka (annual obligatory charity) at freeing the slaves: Allah the Almighty said:
“Zakât (annual obligatory charity) are only for the poor, and the needy and those employed to collect (the funds), and to attract the hearts of those who have been inclined (towards Islâm), and to free the slaves or the captives, and for those in debt, and for Allâh’s Cause, and for the wayfarer (a traveller who is cut off from everything); a duty imposed by Allâh. And Allâh is ‘Alîm (All-Knower), Hakîm (All-Wise).”
The slavery system in the Bible
Deuteronomy (20:10-16): (10When you go near a city to fight against it, then proclaim an offer of peace to it. 11 And it shall be that if they accept your offer of peace, and open to you, then all the people who are found in it shall be placed under tribute to you, and serve you. 12 Now if the city will not make peace with you, but makes war against you, then you shall besiege it. 13 And when the Lord your God delivers it into your hands, you shall strike every male in it with the edge of the sword. 14 But the women, the little ones, the livestock, and all that is in the city, all its spoil, you shall plunder for yourself; and you shall eat the enemies' plunder which the Lord your God gives you. 15 Thus you shall do to all the cities which are very far from you, which are not of the cities of these nations.16 But of the cities of these peoples which the Lord your God gives you as an inheritance, you shall let nothing that breathes remain alive.)
Exodus (21:7-8): (7 And if a man sells his daughter to be a female slave, she shall not go out as the male slaves do. 8 If she does not please her master, who has betrothed her to himself, then he shall let her be redeemed.)
Exodus (21:5-6): (5 But if the servant plainly says, 'I love my master, my wife, and my children; I will not go out free,' 6 then his master shall bring him to the judges. He shall also bring him to the door, or to the doorpost, and his master shall pierce his ear with an awl; and he shall serve him forever.)
Exodus (22:1-3): (1 If a man shall steal an ox, or a sheep, and kill it, or sell it; he shall restore five oxen for an ox, and four sheep for a sheep. 2 If a thief be found breaking up, and be smitten that he die, there shall no blood be shed for him. 3 If the sun be risen upon him, there shall be blood shed for him; for he should make full restitution; if he have nothing, then he shall be sold for his theft.)
Islam and combating racism:
Islam cancelled all forms of discrimination among people through legislations that reject racism, castes or color bar among people. It made the preference between them based on how pious each one is. Allah the Almighty said:
“O mankind! We have created you from a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that you may know one another. Verily, the most honourable of you with Allâh is the most pious. Verily, Allâh is ‘Alîm (All-Knowing), Khabîr (All-Aware).”
The Prophet, peace be upon him, said:
“‘O people, verily, your Lord is One and your father Adam is one. There is no virtue of an Arab over a non-Arab or a non-Arab over an Arab, and neither red skin over black skin nor black skin over red skin, except regarding their righteousness. Verily, the most honourable of you with Allâh is the most pious. Have I not delivered the message?’ They said, ‘Yes, you have, O Messenger of Allah.’ Then he said: ‘Those of you who are present inform the ones who are absent.’.”
While in the Bible we find the following statement:
The Gospel of Matthew (15:23-28): (23 But he answered her not a word. And his disciples came and besought him, saying, Send her away; for she crieth after us. 24 But he answered and said, I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel. 25 Then came she and said, Lord, help me. 26 But he answered and said, It is not meet to take the children's bread, and to cast it to dogs. 27 And she said, Truth, lord: yet the dogs eat of the crumbs which fall from their masters' table. 28 Then Jesus answered and said unto her, O woman, great is thy faith: be it unto thee even as thou wilt. And her daughter was made whole from that very hour.)
In this previous text, there is a clear and harsh response to whoever claims that Jesus Christ, peace be upon him, came for the salvation of the world, the crucifixion and redemption and so on. As he himself clarifies, he was not sent to you nor does he know you! But he was exclusively sent for the children of Israel.
Deuteronomy (23:19-20): (19 You shall not charge interest to your brother, interest on money or food or anything that is lent out at interest. 20 To a foreigner you may charge interest, but to your brother you shall not charge interest, that the Lord your God may bless you.)
The Islamic Sharia and its legalization of enjoying the life:
Clothes and cleanliness:
The Islamic Sharia orders every Muslims to be beautiful in every way, clothes, appearance, scent and words. The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said:
“Verily, Allah is beautiful, He loves beauty.”
Jabir ibn Abd Allah narrated:
“The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ paid a visit to us, and saw a disheveled man whose hair was disordered. He said: ‘Could this man not find something to make his hair look better?’ He saw another man wearing dirty clothes and said: ‘Could this man not find something to wash his garments with?’.”
(Sunan Abu Dawûd)
Abu Al-Ahwas quoted his father saying:
“I came to the Prophet ((ﷺ wearing a garment that doesn’t fit my wealth and he said (to me): ‘Do you have any wealth?’ I replied: ‘Yes.’ He asked: ‘What kind is it?’ I said: ‘Allah has given me camels, sheep, horses and slaves.’ He then said: ‘If Allah has given you wealth, then let the effect of Allah's blessing and generosity be seen on you.’.”
Jabir Bin Samurah said:
“I saw the Prophet ((ﷺ on a moonlit night, when he was wearing a red dress, so I kept looking once at the Messenger of Allah and once at the moon, and he looked better than the moon to me.”
Al-Bara’ bin ‘Azib said:
“The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ was a man of average height, having broad shoulders, with his hair hanging down on the lobes of his ears. He put on a red mantle over him, and never have I seen anyone or anything more handsome than him.”
Abd Allah ibn Abbas narrated:
“When the Haruriyyah (Kharijites) made a revolt, I came to Ali (may Allah be pleased with him). He said: ‘Go to these people to debate them.’ I then put on one of my best suit that was from Yemen. Abu Zumayl (a transmitter) said: ‘Ibn Abbas was handsome and of imposing countenance’. Ibn Abbas said: ‘I then came to them and they said: Welcome, Ibn Abbas! What is this suit of clothes?’ I said: ‘Why are you objecting to me? I saw over the Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ the best suit of clothes’.”
The Sharia considered spending money on what completes a Muslim’s elegance in every way, without wasting, nor profusion due to arrogance, as a way a Muslim is rewarded for. Allah the Almighty said:
“O Children of Adam! Take your adornment (by wearing your clean clothes), while praying, and eat and drink but waste not by extravagance, certainly He (Allâh) likes not those who waste by extravagance.”
The Islamic dress:
There is no such thing called an ‘Islamic dress’ in Sharia, like what Sufis and Shia do, who, for example, dress up with special clothes of certain colors in a certain way such as green or black, etc. However, there are certain specifications for dressing up in the Islamic Sharia, which both Muslim men and women must abide by:
• The dress should not be similar to that of non-Muslims: for example, to wear something only Buddhists wear, or only Christians or Jews wear, such as the outfit of monks, priests and Rabbis. The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said:
“He who imitates any people (in their actions) is considered to be one of them.”
• The dress must cover the parts the Islamic Sharia has forbidden from showing: for them not be visible due to its shortness or transparency.
• The dress must be clean, elegant and presentable: The Prophet ((ﷺ, saw a man wearing dirty clothes and said:
“Could this man not find something to wash his garments with?”
(Sunan Abu Dawûd)
• The dress must be of good smell: so that people will not turn away from the person. The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ prohibited eating garlic or onion before going to prayer:
“He who has eaten garlic or onion should keep away from us or our mosques.”
(Al-Bukhâri and Muslim)
• The dress must not be a dress of pride and vanity (Libas Ash-Shuhra): which is any weird dress for the society they live in, as when they wear it, society will feel strange. Or if the dress is inappropriate in form or contradict the good morals. The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said:
“Whoever wears a garment of pride and vanity (Libas Ash-Shuhra) in this world, Allah will clothe him in a garment of humiliation on the Day of Resurrection.”
(Sahih Abu Dawûd)
• The dress of women must not resemble that of men, and the dress of men must not resemble that of women: Abu Huraira said:
“The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) cursed a man who puts on the dress of women, and a woman who puts on the dress of men.”
(Sahih Ibn Hibbân)
There are sayings of the Prophet (ﷺ) which indicate the importance of the Muslim paying attention to his appearance, and whoever wants to know more about this, there are books about dressing in Islam.
What we summarize from what has been previously mentioned is that the Islamic Sharia paid great attention to the Muslim’s cleanliness and his good appearance. Therefore, he should not let people turn away from him because of his bad appearance, uncleanliness and lack of elegance.
There is an important issue that might cause misconception regarding the Islamic Sharia for non-Muslims especially in the Western countries, which is that we find some Muslim foreigners or new Muslims in those countries, who might wear unusual clothes with the intention of making others know that they are Muslims. For example, they may wear a dark grey cloak, which is the cloak (Galabia) of the people of the Upper Egypt, whether they are Muslims or Christians, so, those Muslims who dress in such a cloak in Europe, don’t identify themselves as Muslims but as people coming from the Upper Egypt (while they are not). Or they might wear above this dark grey cloak (Galabia) a jacket of Western suit or a military jacket (despite the fact that they are not military men and they are not entitled to wear that jacket). Or, for example, one may cover his head with a strange turban or shawl in a strange way, while he should wear clothes that make people like him and that are source of comfort and contentment for them, and not wear something that will keep people away from him or will be a source of worry and doubt for them. The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ was the best in appearance and scent, and everyone who saw him felt contentment and serenity.
We must differentiate between a certain dress for certain association or organization and a certain dress that is for a certain sect or group, which is established on a religious reason like what the Sufis and Shia do. As for the outfits of schools, universities, international and local organizations, these are defining outfits that are not based on a religious or sect basis, but they only define those who are affiliated to that side or work in it, so that is fine.
Food and drink:
Allah the Almighty said:
“Say (O Muhammad): "Who has forbidden the adornment with clothes given by Allâh, which He has produced for His slaves, and At-Taiyyibât [all kinds of Halâl (lawful) things] of food?" Say: "They are, in the life of this world, for those who believe, (and) exclusively for them (believers) on the Day of Resurrection (the disbelievers will not share them)." Thus We explain the Ayât (Islâmic laws) in detail for people who have knowledge.”
The Islamic Sharia permitted one to enjoy all kinds of food and drink, except for what has been forbidden by the Qur’an or the Sunnah. Allah the Almighty said:
“ Forbidden to you (for food) are: Al-Maitah (the dead animals - cattle - beast not slaughtered), blood, the flesh of swine, and that on which Allâh’s Name has not been mentioned while slaughtering, (that which has been slaughtered as a sacrifice for others than Allâh, or has been slaughtered for idols) and that which has been killed by strangling, or by a violent blow, or by a headlong fall, or by the goring of horns - and that which has been (partly) eaten by a wild animal - unless you are able to slaughter it (before its death) - and that which is sacrificed (slaughtered) on An-Nusub (stone-altars). (Forbidden) also is to use arrows seeking luck or decision; (all) that is Fisqun (disobedience of Allâh and sin).”
Allah the Almighty said:
“They ask you (O Muhammad) concerning alcoholic drink and gambling. Say: "In them is a great sin, and (some) benefit for men, but the sin of them is greater than their benefit." And they ask you what they ought to spend. Say: "That which is beyond your needs." Thus Allâh makes clear to you His Laws in order that you may give thought.”
Also, it forbade immoderation. Allah the Almighty said:
“and eat and drink but waste not by extravagance, certainly He (Allâh) likes not those who waste by extravagance.”
It clarified the right way to eat and drink, which guarantees –by Allah’s permission- the safety of the body from diseases. The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ says:
“No man fills a container worse than his stomach. A few morsels that keep his back upright are sufficient for him. If he has to, then he should keep (of his stomach’s space) one-third for food, one-third for drink and one-third for his breathing.”
Life in the Islamic Sharia is not like some may think it is, that it is far from enjoyment and permissible entertainment. Hândhala Al-Usaidi (May Allah be pleased with him) said:
“I met Abu Bakr and he said: "How are you O Hândhala?" I said, " Hândhala has become a hypocrite". He said, "Subhan Allah, what are you saying?" I said, "When we are in the company of the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) and he reminds us of the Hell-fire and Paradise, we feel as if we are seeing them with our very eyes, and when we leave him (ﷺ) and we go back to our homes, we get busy with our wives, our children, our business, so, we forget much (of the things that pertain to the Hereafter)." Abu Bakr said, "By Allah, I also experience the same thing". So, Abu Bakr and I went to the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) and I said to him, "O Messenger of Allah (ﷺ), Hândhala has turned into a hypocrite." Thereupon, the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said, "What has happened to you?" I said, "O Messenger of Allah, when we are in your company, you remind us about the Hell-fire and Paradise, till we feel as if we are seeing them with our own eyes, but when we go away from you, we get busy with our wives, children and business, so, we forget much (of the things that pertain to the Hereafter)." Thereupon, the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said, "By Him in Whose Hand is my life, if you remain after you go home at the same state you were at while you were in my presence and you keep busy with the remembrance of Allah, the angels would shake hands with you while you are at your beds and in your roads; but O Hândhala, it should be one hour (for worshipping) and one hour (for our worldly affairs)". The Prophet (ﷺ) said this thrice.”
Therefore, the Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ clarified in this saying (hadeeth) that permissible entertainment and recreation is required for the soul to regain its energy and vitality.
The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ showed his friends the ethics of joking, fun and entertainment when they asked him:
"O Messenger of Allah, you joke with us!" The Prophet replied ((ﷺ, "Yes, but I do not say but the truth."
As the joking can be through saying, it can also be through action. Anas bin Malik, may Allah be pleased with him, reported:
‘Whenever a resident of the wilderness, whose name was Zâhir, visited the Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ, he brought with him present from the wilderness, (vegetables etc.) for him ((ﷺ. When he wanted to leave the city and go back, the Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ used to present him with provisions from the city. Once the Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said, "Zâhir is our wilderness, and we are his city." Once while Zâhir was selling his merchandise, the Prophet ((ﷺ approached him, and caught him from the back while Zâhir could not see who caught him. Zâhir said, "Who is this? Leave me." But when he saw with the corner of his eye that it was the Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ, he straightened his back and began pressing it to the chest of the Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ. The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ then said (as a joke with him), "Who will purchase this slave?" Zâhir replied, "O Messenger of Allah, if you shall sell me, you will be selling a defective thing, and you will earn a very small sum. (because Zâhir, may Allah be pleased with him, was not handsome)" The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said, "No, you are not defective thing at the Sight of Allah (or he may have said ‘but you are at the Sight of Allah very valuable).’.”
(Sahih Ibn Hibân)
Etiquette of joking in Sharia:
▪ Joking must not harm any person, nor offend him, as the Messenger ((ﷺ said:
“It is not lawful for a Muslim to frighten a Muslim.”
▪ Joking must not get him out of the circle of honesty, for example when a man lies to make others laugh, as the Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said:
“Woe to him who while speaking says a lie, to make people laugh thereby. Woe to him! Woe to him!”
The Islamic Sharia also permitted entertainment and enjoyment on the condition that it is permissible, such as shooting bow and arrows, and riding horses. The Messenger of Allah ((ﷺ said:
“All things that a Muslim man does for entertainment are in vain (i.e. he will not be rewarded for them) except for shooting arrows, training his horse and playing with his wife, for these are things that bring reward.”
(Sûnnan ibn Mâjah)
It also permitted everything that keeps the body in good health and shape, such as swimming, fencing and wrestling.
“Once the Prophet ((ﷺ wrestled with a man who was known for his power, his name was Rakana. Rakana said: ‘If you beat me, I will give you a sheep and if I beat you, you shall give me one.’ The prophet ((ﷺ beat him, and Rakana said: ‘Come one more time.’ The prophet ((ﷺ beat him for the second time, and Rakana said again: ‘Come one more time.’ The prophet ((ﷺ beat him for the third time. Then, Rakana said: ‘What should I tell my family? I can say about the first sheep that the wolf ate it, and the second sheep got lost, but what can I say about the third one?’ Then the Prophet ((ﷺ told him: ‘We wouldn’t gather the two things over you, to beat you in wrestling and to take your sheeps. Keep your sheeps.’.”
The Christian and Jewish Sharia
• Examples of the Christian and Jewish Sharia from the Bible.
- Cutting off the hand penalty in the Holy Bible.
- Penalty of adultery in the Holy Bible.
- Death penalty in the Holy Bible.
- Freedom of belief in the Holy Bible (penalty of apostasy).
- Law of jealousy in the Holy Bible.
The Christian and Jewish Sharia
Is the Old Testament the Holy Book of Christians and Jews as well?
Before getting into some examples of the Christian and Jewish Sharia, we want to know whether the Old Testament is the Holy Book for both Christians and Jews or not! Throughout my conversations with some Christians, I found at the beginning that they showed great enthusiasm regarding the fact that the Bible, in both the Old and New Testament, is the revealed Word from God which is not distorted and cannot be changed nor lost. After reading to them some texts from the Old Testament, they quickly recant and say, ‘You can ask Rabbi about those texts, as I am not Jewish’. They reach to a point where they sometimes disown the Old Testament as a whole and say that ‘All of that was before the coming of Jesus Christ and that after he came, everything changed’. Of course, this explanation is unacceptable and irrational, as no Christian can be a Christian unless he believes in the Bible, in both the Old and the New Testament equally. This is clear and obvious for Christians. Considering this, if one of the Christians says that he or she does not believe in the Old Testament and only believes in the New Testament, then he is a disbeliever in Christianity! Whoever wants to make sure of that should ask one of the priests and to see what he will say to him!
As it was mentioned in the Gospel of Matthew (5:17-19), that Jesus, peace be upon him, said:
“17 Don’t think that I came to destroy the law or the prophets. I did not come to destroy, but to fulfill. 18 For most certainly, I tell you, until heaven and earth pass away, not even one smallest letter or one tiny pen stroke shall in any way pass away from the law, until all things are accomplished. 19 Whoever, therefore, shall break one of these least commandments, and teach others to do so, shall be called least in the Kingdom of Heaven; but whoever shall do and teach them shall be called great in the Kingdom of Heaven.”
Now, let’s take some examples of the penalties that were mentioned in the Bible:
Cutting off the hand penalty in the Holy Bible
Deuteronomy (25:11-12): (11 If two men fight together, and the wife of one draws near to rescue her husband from the hand of the one attacking him, and puts out her hand and seizes him by the genitals, 12 then you shall cut off her hand; your eye shall not pity her).
Penalty of adultery in the Holy Bible
Leviticus (21:9): (9 The daughter of any priest, if she profanes herself by playing the harlot, she profanes her father. She shall be burned with fire)!!!!!
Deuteronomy (22:20-21): (20 But if the thing is true, and evidences of virginity are not found for the young woman, 21 then they shall bring out the young woman to the door of her father's house, and the men of her city shall stone her to death with stones, because she has done a disgraceful thing in Israel, to play the harlot in her father's house. So you shall put away the evil from among you).
Deuteronomy (22:22): (22 If a man is found lying with a woman married to a husband, then both of them shall die, the man that lay with the woman, and the woman).
Deuteronomy (22:23-24): (23 If a young woman who is a virgin is betrothed to a husband, and a man finds her in the city and lies with her, 24 then you shall bring them both out to the gate of that city, and you shall stone them to death with stones).
Gospel of Matthew (5:27-29): (27 "You have heard that it was said to those of old, 28 But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart. 29 If your right eye causes you to sin, pluck it out and cast it from you; for it is more profitable for you that one of your members perish, than for your whole body to be cast into hell).
Leviticus (20:10-15): (10 The man who commits adultery with another man's wife, he who commits adultery with his neighbor's wife, the adulterer and the adulteress, shall surely be put to death. 11 The man who lies with his father's wife has uncovered his father's nakedness; both of them shall surely be put to death. Their blood shall be upon them. 12 If a man lies with his daughter-in-law, both of them shall surely be put to death. They have committed perversion. Their blood shall be upon them. 13 If a man lies with a male as he lies with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination. They shall surely be put to death. Their blood shall be upon them. 14 If a man marries a woman and her mother, it is wickedness. They shall be burned with fire, both he and they, that there may be no wickedness among you. 15 If a man mates with an animal, he shall surely be put to death, and you shall kill the animal).
This previous verse continues to mention many penalties such as, the death penalty for the woman who slept with an animal, or the man who saw the nakedness of his sister or slept with a menstruating woman, or the one who saw his aunt’s nakedness, or the one who slept with his uncle’s or brother’s wife etc.
One can say: but did not Jesus Christ cancel the penalty of adultery, which is death by stoning and make it a crime without penalty instead? Wasn’t it said in the Gospel of John (8:7): (7 He who is without sin among you, let him throw the first stone at her)?
We answer that, saying that Christian theologians agreed that this story is untrue and that it has been added to the Bible in the tenth century , therefore it cannot be counted on. Besides that, Jesus Christ himself said that he didn’t come to cancel the law of Moses.
Gospel of Matthew (5:17-18): (17 Do not think that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets. I did not come to destroy but to fulfill. 18 For assuredly, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle will by no means pass from the law until all is fulfilled.)
In other words, if Jesus Christ was with us today, he would have stoned any woman who committed adultery based on the Sharia of Moses, peace be upon him.
Death Penalty in the Holy Bible
Paul say in his letter to the Hebrews (10:28): (28A man who disregards Moses’ law dies without compassion on the word of two or three witnesses.)
Exodus (21:12-25): (12 He who strikes a man so that he dies shall surely be put to death… 14 But if a man acts with premeditation against his neighbor, to kill him by treachery, you shall take him from My altar, that he may die. 15 And he who strikes his father or his mother shall surely be put to death. 17 And he who curses his father or his mother shall surely be put to death. 22 If men fight, and hurt a woman with child, so that she gives birth prematurely, yet no harm follows, he shall surely be punished accordingly as the woman's husband imposes on him; and he shall pay as the judges determine. 24 eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, 25 burn for burn, wound for wound, stripe for stripe.)
Exodus (22:18-20): (18 You shall not permit a sorceress to live. 19 Whoever lies with an animal shall surely be put to death. 20 He who sacrifices to any god, except to the Lord only, he shall be utterly destroyed.)
Genesis (9:6): (6Whoever sheds man's blood, by man his blood shall be shed.)
Numbers (35:31-33): (31 Moreover you shall take no ransom for the life of a murderer who is guilty of death; but he shall surely be put to death. 33 So you shall not pollute the land in which you are: for blood, it pollutes the land; and no expiation can be made for the land for the blood that is shed therein, but by the blood of him who shed it.)
Exodus (32:26-28): (26 then Moses stood in the entrance of the camp, and said, "Whoever is on the Lord's side, come to me." And all the sons of Levi gathered themselves together to him. 27 And he said to them, "Thus says the Lord God of Israel: 'Let every man put his sword on his side, and go in and out from entrance to entrance throughout the camp, and let every man kill his brother, every man his companion, and every man his neighbor. 28 So the sons of Levi did according to the word of Moses. And about three thousand men of the people fell that day.)
Deuteronomy (21:18): (18 If a man has a stubborn and rebellious son who will not obey the voice of his father or the voice of his mother, and who, when they have chastened him, will not heed them, 19 then his father and his mother shall take hold of him and bring him out to the elders of his city, to the gate of his city. 20 And they shall say to the elders of his city, 'This son of ours is stubborn and rebellious; he will not obey our voice; he is a glutton and a drunkard.21 Then all the men of his city shall stone him to death with stones.)
Freedom of belief in the Holy Bible (apostasy)
The Gospel of Luke (19:27) mentions that Jesus Christ, peace be upon him, said: (27 And as for those who were against me, who would not have me for their ruler, let them come here, and be put to death before me.)
Deuteronomy (13:12-16): (12 If you hear someone in one of your cities, which the Lord your God gives you to dwell in, saying, 13 Corrupt men have gone out from among you and enticed the inhabitants of their city, saying, "Let us go and serve other gods" '-which you have not known- 14 then you shall inquire, search out, and ask diligently. And if it is indeed true and certain that such an abomination was committed among you, 15 you shall surely strike the inhabitants of that city with the edge of the sword, utterly destroying it, all that is in it and its livestock, with the edge of the sword. 16 And you shall gather all its plunder into the middle of the street, and completely burn with fire the city and all its plunder, for the Lord your God. It shall be a heap forever; it shall not be built again.)
Deuteronomy (7:1-5): (1 When the Lord your God brings you into the land which you go to possess, and has cast out many nations before you… 2 and when the Lord your God delivers them over to you, you shall conquer them and utterly destroy them. You shall make no covenant with them nor show mercy to them. 3 Nor shall you make marriages with them... 5 But thus you shall deal with them: you shall destroy their altars, and break down their sacred pillars, and cut down their wooden images, and burn their carved images with fire.)
Ezekiel (9:4-7): (4 and the Lord said to him, "Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and put a mark on the foreheads of the men who sigh and cry over all the abominations that are done within it. 5 To the others He said in my hearing, "Go after him through the city and kill; do not let your eye spare, nor have any pity. 6 Utterly slay old and young men, maidens and little children and women; but do not come near anyone on whom is the mark; and begin at My sanctuary." So they began with the elders who were before the temple. 7 Then He said to them, "Defile the temple, and fill the courts with the slain. Go out!" And they went out and killed in the city.)
Law of jealousy in the Holy Bible
Numbers (5:11-28): (11 And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, 12 Speak to the people of Israel, If any man's wife goes astray and breaks faith with him, 13 if a man lies with her sexually, and it is hidden from the eyes of her husband, and she is undetected though she has defiled herself, and there is no witness against her, since she was not taken in the act, 14 and if the spirit of jealousy comes over him and he is jealous of his wife who has defiled herself, or if the spirit of jealousy comes over him and he is jealous of his wife, though she has not defiled herself, 15 then the man shall bring his wife to the priest and bring the offering required of her, a tenth of an ephah of barley flour. He shall pour no oil on it and put no frankincense on it, for it is a grain offering of jealousy, a grain offering of remembrance, bringing iniquity to remembrance. 16 And the priest shall bring her near and set her before the Lord. 17 And the priest shall take holy water in an earthenware vessel and take some of the dust that is on the floor of the tabernacle and put it into the water. 18 And the priest shall set the woman before the Lord and unbind the hair of the woman's head and place in her hands the grain offering of remembrance, which is the grain offering of jealousy. And in his hand the priest shall have the water of bitterness that brings the curse. 19 Then the priest shall make her take an oath, saying, ‘If no man has lain with you, and if you have not turned aside to uncleanness while you were under your husband's authority, be free from this water of bitterness that brings the curse. 20 But if you have gone astray, though you are under your husband's authority, and if you have defiled yourself, and some man other than your husband has lain with you, 21 then’ (let the priest make the woman take the oath of the curse, and say to the woman) ‘the Lord make you a curse and an oath among your people, when the Lord makes your thigh fall away and your body swell. 22 May this water that brings the curse pass into your bowels and make your womb swell and your thigh fall away.’ And the woman shall say, ‘Amen, Amen.23 Then the priest shall write these curses in a book and wash them off into the water of bitterness. 24 And he shall make the woman drink the water of bitterness that brings the curse, and the water that brings the curse shall enter into her and cause bitter pain. 25 And the priest shall take the grain offering of jealousy out of the woman's hand and shall wave the grain offering before the Lord and bring it to the altar. 26 And the priest shall take a handful of the grain offering, as its memorial portion, and burn it on the altar, and afterward shall make the woman drink the water. 27 And when he has made her drink the water, then, if she has defiled herself and has broken faith with her husband, the water that brings the curse shall enter into her and cause bitter pain, and her womb shall swell, and her thigh shall fall away, and the woman shall become a curse among her people. 28 But if the woman has not defiled herself and is clean, then she shall be free and shall conceive children.)
In the end, I want to say that everything we mentioned from the Bible’s quotes only aim at reducing the madness of those who unfairly accuse Islam and the Islamic Sharia in many things, without first looking what their Holy books say. The Islamic Sharia is the only Sharia that is fighting every form of racism and discrimination among people around the world, as well as the eating up of their money, their being robbed, and the assault of their honor and its disgrace.
While we read in the Deuteronomy (23:19-20): (19 You shall not charge interest to your brother, interest on money or food or anything that is lent out at interest. 20 To a foreigner you may charge interest, but to your brother you shall not charge interest, that the Lord your God may bless you.)
Exodus (3:22): (22 But every woman shall ask of her neighbor, namely, of her who dwells near her house, articles of silver, articles of gold, and clothing; and you shall put them on your sons and on your daughters. So you shall plunder the Egyptians.)
Zechariah (14:1-2): (1 Behold, the day of the Lord is coming, and your spoil will be divided in your midst. 2 For I will gather all the nations to battle against Jerusalem; The city shall be taken, the houses rifled, And the women ravished. Half of the city shall go into captivity.)
So, where are the Western Media who falsely accuse the Islamic Sharia day and night, from criticizing what we have read now, which is an explicit violation of human rights?? Deep inside them they know that Islam is the religion of truth, and their envy towards it makes them attack it through this fierce attack, in order to turn people away from it especially after having seen the high demand for entering Islam. They are compared to those who put their hand in front of the sun to hide its light from the universe. Allah the Almighty said:
“And when there came to them (the Jews), a Book (this Qur’ân) from Allâh confirming what is with them [the Taurât (Torah) and the Injeel (Gospel)], although aforetime they had invoked Allâh (for coming of Muhammad) in order to gain victory over those who disbelieved, then when there came to them that which they had recognised, they disbelieved in it. So let the Curse of Allâh be on the disbelievers. * How bad is that for which they have sold their ownselves, that they should disbelieve in that which Allâh has revealed (the Qur’ân), grudging that Allâh should reveal of His Grace unto whom He wills of His slaves. So they have drawn on themselves wrath upon wrath. And for the disbelievers, there is disgracing torment. * And when it is said to them (the Jews), "Believe in what Allâh has sent down," they say, "We believe in what was sent down to us." And they disbelieve in that which came after it, while it is the truth confirming what is with them. Say (O Muhammad to them): "Why then have you killed the Prophets of Allâh aforetime, if you indeed have been believers? * And indeed Mûsâ (Moses) came to you with clear proofs, yet you worshipped the calf after he left, and you were Zâlimûn (polytheists and wrongdoers).”
I say with full confidence that there is no savior except Islam for the societies of the modern world which were fully ruined in every domain; the moral, political, social and economic, because of the tyranny of their man-made laws such as: the odious capitalism, atheistic communism, and the humiliating socialism, which eat people’s efforts and gains, as well as the malevolent dictatorship that kills the human innovation and everything it creates, through the language of violence and racial discrimination, because of sectarianism and ethnicity. Also, there is no savior for the worried anxious souls and its emotional tension, except for the embracement of Islam and the application of its teachings. After that, safety, justice, peace, prosperity and mercy will dominate the human societies and the confused hearts of its people will rest assured and their worried selves will calm down and their narrow chests will be in ecstasies. Allah the Almighty has spoken the truth:
“And if the people of the towns had believed and had the Taqwâ (piety), certainly, We should have opened for them blessings from the heaven and the earth, but they belied (the Messengers). So We took them (with punishment) for what they used to earn (polytheism and crimes).”
Many western thinkers have nominated Islam as a savior of humanity from the corruption, vice and inhumanity it is currently going through.
The French thinker (Deebckeeh) says:
‘The West has never known Islam, as when Islam appeared, the West took a hostile stance against it and never stopped slandering and condemning it in order to find excuses to fight it. What grew out of this distortion was the establishment of rude sayings about Islam in the Western minds. There is no doubt that Islam is the one religion that the modern world needs to get rid of the contemporary materialistic civilization which if it continues like this it will destroy the humankind.’
The English thinker George Bernard Shaw said in his book ‘Muhammad’, which was burnt by the British government at that time, because it contained a declaration that recognizes the message of the Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him, and the validation of his religion:
‘Truly, this world is in need of a man who thinks like Muhammad, this prophet who put his religion as the subject of respect and reverence, it is the strongest religion on every level, it is immortal. I see a lot of my people embracing this religion after a piece of evidence. This religion will find a wide space for it in this continent –Europe. Clerics in the middle ages, out of ignorance or extremism, painted a dark picture of Muhammad whom they considered an enemy of Christianity.’
In another subject in the same book he said:
‘But I looked at this man and I found him a marvel superhero. I realized that he is not an enemy of Christianity, but we should call him as a savior of humanity. In my opinion, if he took command of the world today he would succeed in resolving our problems, and guarantee peace and happiness which the people aspire to achieve.’
The English historian Wills say:
‘Every religion that doesn’t go with civilization in all its stages, then hits it through the wall. The true religion I found that goes with civilization wherever it goes is Islam. Whoever wants proofs let him read the Qur’an and its perspectives, scientific methods and social laws, it is a book of religion, science, sociology, ethics and history. If I was asked to determine the meaning of Islam then I would use this phrase: “Islam is civilization.’
A question arises here:
“Why don’t they want Islam, and why don’t they want you to know it, or they want you to know it but based only on their distortion?’’
The reason: through Islam they cannot steal your money through the imposition of taxes, interests and in the name of the open international economy. They will not be able to make women a public property among men through imposing sexual freedom. They will not be able to enslave humans through what they impose from man-made laws which only make the people become more submissive and more restricted. However, through the Islamic Sharia, no one will take your money and no one will assault your honor and no one will be able to enslave you. The prophet, peace be upon him, says:
“Verily your blood, your property and your honor are as sacred and inviolable as the sanctity of this day of yours, in this month of yours and in this town of yours. Verily! I have conveyed this message to you.”
(Al-Bukhâri & Muslim)
In reality, when you get lost and find someone who guides you to the path you want to reach, you thank him with sincere gratitude. What about the one who guides you to the path which leads to happiness and eternal bliss of the eternal life in Paradise and warns you against the path which leads to misery and the lasting torment of the eternal life in Hell? Isn’t it better to thank him for what he has offered you, namely saving your soul and body from fire, instead of criticizing him and warning people against him?!
The Messenger Muhammad, peace be upon him, was never known for being a liar or a traitor before or after Islam. He was a perfect example of honesty and truthfulness in his sayings. He was never held accountable for treason or lying. He was known for his honesty since he was little until he was called Al-Amin (i.e. the most honest man).
When Heraclius, the Byzantine Emperor, received the letter of the Messenger, peace be upon him, which included his invitation to Islam, he called some people from the Prophet’s nation in order to ask them about him. Then a group was brought to him and among them was Abu-Sufian Bin Harb, who was at that time a big enemy of Islam, but he couldn’t lie front of the others from his nation, so when he was asked by Heraclius: ‘have you ever accused him of lying before he says what he said?’ He said: ‘No’, Then Hercules said: ‘he would not lie to Allah if he had never lied to people!’
He is the one who came with the Islamic Sharia to be your savior from the darkness, the injustice of the tyrants and their unjust laws. A savior of your worried soul who will lead you to the right religion, that has no contradictions, and doesn’t order you to worship people, saint, crosses, tombs, idols or icons, but to worship Allah the One True God who created all that exist.
He came to be your savior from Hell after death, as the Islamic Sharia is the truth, so whoever wills let him believe and whoever wills let him disbelieve. Allah the Almighty said:
“Say: Obey Allâh and obey the Messenger, but if you turn away, he (Messenger Muhammad) is only responsible for the duty placed on him (i.e. to convey Allâh’s Message) and you for that placed on you. If you obey him, you shall be on the right guidance. The Messenger’s duty is only to convey (the message) in a clear way (i.e. to preach in a plain way).”
 William Montgomery Watt: English historian, Islam and Christianity in the modern world (p. 223)
 Edward Gibbon: ‘In the preceding volumes of this history, I have described the Triumph of barbarism and religion’. The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, vol. 3, ch. LXXI, p. 1068.
 Groningen Protocol, 2004, Eduard Verhagen, Netherlands.
 Hanged, drawn and quartered, Sir Thomas Armstrong.
 Disembowelment or evisceration, Balthasar Gérard.
 Drownings at Nantes, Noyades de Nantes.
 Death by crushing or pressing, Giles Corey.
 Râ’i Al-Gumhûr: Means the opinion of the majority of scholars, i.e. three of the four scholars (Abu Hanîfa, Mâlik, Ash-Shâfi‘ei and Ahmad) who established the four schools of Islamic jurisprudence have agreed to the same opinion.
 In USA known as "highwayman”, “knights of the road", "gentlemen of the road" and “road agents”, in Australia known as “bushrangers”
 Swinging in America: Love, Sex, and Marriage in the 21st Century, By Curtis R. Bergstrand, Jennifer Blevins Sinski.
 Matilda Joslyn Gage, ‘‘Women, Church and State’’, Chapter VII, Polygamy, page 404.
 “Women, Church and State”, Chapter VII, Polygamy, page 398.
 St. Augustine of Hippo, “Moral Treatises of St. Augustine”.
 Philip Schaff, ‘‘Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers’’: First Series, Volume IV St. Augustine: The Writings Against the Manichaeans, and Against the Donatists, Book XXII, Page 289.
 Pope Concedes Unjustifiable Crimes in Converting South Americans, http://www.nytimes.com/2007/05/24/world/americas/24pope.html?_r=0
 Albigensian Crusade or Cathar Crusade (1209–1229), Catharism, Pope Innocent III, Massacre at Béziers 1209.
 Massacre of Mérindol (1545), Waldensians.
 Riots of Toulouse 1562.
 Michelade, Saint Michael’s Day (1567), Nîmes.
 St. Bartholomew's Day massacre 1572.
 Heraclius appointed Cyrus of Alexandria as ruler and patriarch over it, and ordered him to impose the doctrine of ‘Monotheletism’ on the Copts, but the Copts refused that doctrine, and therefore they suffered horrible persecutions.
 Look: ‘When Jesus became god’, page 191, Richard E. Rubenstein.
 Ash-Sharh Al-Mûmti‘ (8/22)
 Ash-Sharh Al-Mûmti‘ (8/7)
 Tafseer ibn ‘Ashûr.
 At-Tafseer Al-Muyâsar.
 Coptic Synaxarium, Pope Benjamin I of Alexandria http://st-takla.org/Full-Free-Coptic-Books/Coptic-Synaxarium-or-Synaxarion_English/05-Topah/Coptic-Calendar_08-Toba.html#3.
 At-Tabari, volume 3, page 226.
 Az-Zihâr is the saying of a husband to his wife: You are to me like the back of my mother (i.e. unlawful for me to approach), and that was a form of divorce before Islam, which Islam forbade because it kept the woman not married and not divorced as well.
 Al-Khawārij, the misguided extremist group, that revolt against the Muslim ruler and the majority of Muslim nation and they fight against them.
 Subhan Allah means ‘Exalted is Allah and away from every imperfection’, and someone may say this phrase when he is astonished from something.
 Bart D. Ehrman ‘‘Misquoting Jesus in the Bible’’ LECTURE minute 33:00. /see also, Bart D. Ehrman "Jesus and the Adulteress," ‘‘New Testament Studies’’, xxxiv (1988) pp. 24-44./ See also, Bruce Metzger, A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament (Stuttgart, 1971), pages 219-221.
- Category: Introducing the Islam
- Author: Ahmed Al-Amir
- Translator: EUROPEAN ISLAMIC RESEARCH CENTER (EIRC) المركز الأوروبي للدراسات الإسلامية
- Publisher: www.islamland.com
About the book:
Sharia law in Islam, Christianity and Judaism