From his characteristics is that he used to rule with equity and justice ﷺ


We’re still discussing Allaah’s statement (Mighty and Exalted is He):

وَإِنَّكَ لَعَلَى خُلُقٍ عَظِيمٍ

(And verily, you are on an exalted (standard of) character.) [Al-Qalam:4]

And from his characteristics ﷺ is that he used to rule with equity and justice between two disputing parties. He did not make a distinction between a close relative or a non relative. Neither did he distinguish between a loved one or an enemy. The prophet ﷺ used to stand up for justice and rule with equity, so when two disputing parties presented their case before him, he would judge between them with truth and fairness without taking into consideration if the truthful party is a relative or a non relative; without taking into consideration if the truthful party is righteous or unrighteous; without taking into consideration if the truthful party is a Muslim or a kaafir. Rather he would be fair in his judgement according to what’s apparent, because he ﷺ does not have knowlege of the ghayb ( the unseen) as it comes in a hadith in saheehayn (Bukhari and Muslim) from the hadith of Um Salamah (may Allaah be pleased with her) that the Messenger of Allaah ﷺ said:

“I am only a human being, and you people (opponents) come to me with your cases; and it may be that one of you can present his case eloquently in a more convincing way than the other, and I give my verdict according to what I hear. So if ever I judge (by error) and give the right of a brother to his other (brother) then he (the latter) should not take it, for I am giving him only a piece of Fire.” (Bukhari 638).

So the prophet ﷺ judges according to what’s apparent, not according to what’s hidden because he doesn’t know the unseen. But rather Allaah (Mighty and Exalted) informs him of something from the unseen according to how He wishes, as He (Mighty and Exalted) says:

وَمَا كَانَ اللَّهُ لِيُطْلِعَكُمْ عَلَى الْغَيْبِ وَلَكِنَّ اللَّهَ يَجْتَبِى مِن رُّسُلِهِ مَن يَشَآءُ

“Nor will Allah disclose to you the secrets of the Unseen, but Allah chooses of His Messengers whom He wills.” [Al-Imraan:179]

He (سبحانه و تعالى) also says:

عَالِمُ الْغَيْبِ فَلاَ يُظْهِرُ عَلَى غَيْبِهِ أَحَداً – إِلاَّ مَنِ ارْتَضَى مِن رَّسُول

(26. The All-Knower of the Unseen, and He reveals to none His Unseen.) (27. Except to a Messenger whom He has chosen.) [Al-Jinn:26-27]

So the prophet ﷺ judges according to what’s apparent and judges in favor of the one whom he sees that the proofs and evidences are with them. However, he ﷺ said:

“If I ever judge (by error) and give the right of a brother to his other (brother) then he (the latter) should not take it, for I am giving him only a piece of Fire.” Meaning let not a person think that the ruling of a jugde which appears to be just but in reality it’s otherwise, where the truth lies with one person and not the other but one was cheated because of not having evidence. For example a person comes and says :”This is my land,” and it truly is his land. He’s asked to present his proofs and he says: “wallahi i don’t have it.” It was torn, lost, etc. Meanwhile they prepare for the other person (fake) documentation and proofs, they even go as far as burying it in the earth inorder to give it a yellowish look so that it would be said the documentations are old. Yes. So this one who brought forth his (false documents) has proof based on what’s apparent. So the judge rules in his favor, however this ruling does not make the haraam permissible. No, rather he’s only taking a piece from the fire. So let him take it or leave it.

Once, an Ansari man quarrelled with Az-Zubair in the presence of the Prophet ﷺ about the Harra Canals which were used for irrigating the date-palms. The Ansari man said to Az-Zubair, “Let the water pass’ but Az-Zubair refused to do so. So, the case was brought before the

Prophet who said to Az-Zubair, “O Zubair! Irrigate (your land) and then let the water pass to your neighbor.” On that the Ansari got angry and said to the Prophet ﷺ, “Is it because he (i.e. Zubair) is your aunt’s son?”

Who’s his (the prophet’s) aunt?- Safiyyah. His aunt is Safiyyah. Az-Zubayr bin Awwaam is the son of the prophet’s paternal aunt. So Allaah revealed:

“But no, by your Lord They can have no faith until they make you judge in all disputes between them.” (4:65)

So now (here) the prophet ﷺ judged in favor of who?- In favor of a relative. Is it because he’s related to him?- No, rather because the truth was on his side. Because the water passes by his house first, therefore he takes from it what he needs and he leaves the rest to go to the next person, and so forth. This is the Islamic ruling with regards to this.

Two men disputed before the prophet ﷺ over land, one of them was a Muslim and the other was a Jew. So the prophet ﷺ said to the Muslim, “do you have proof of your ownership?” He said “no”, so the Prophet ﷺ asked the Jew to take an oath. He (the Muslim) said, “O Allah’s Messenger! He will take an oath and deprive me of my property.” [1]

So this one has no witness or a proof, hence the ruling becomes in whose favor?- in favor of the Jew. The ruling is in favor of the jew. So the prophet ﷺ used to stand up for justice, and he did not oppress nor transgress or trespass. He did not take sides with a relative over a non relative. Neither did he take sides with a companion over an enemy nor did he take sides with a Muslim over a kaafir in his judgements. Rather he used to judge with justice, and for this reason we must adorn ourselves with this characteristic. Allaah سبحانه وتعالي says:

(135. O you who believe! Stand out firmly for justice, as witnesses to Allah, even though it be against yourselves, or your parents, or your kin, be he rich or poor, Allah is a better Protector to both. So follow not the lusts, lest you may avoid justice; and if you swerve or turn aside, verily, then surely Allah is aware of what you do) [An-Nisaa:135]

And some people you may find them standing up for the truth and maybe he even supports the one on the truth and defends him. Is it because he’s upon the truth?- No, but rather because he’s his relative, so he supports him. Meaning had his relative been a caller to falsehood he would have stood with him and aided and supported him, and this is not permissible. Allaah says:

فَلاَ تَتَّبِعُواْ الْهَوَى أَن تَعْدِلُواْ

So follow not the (low) desires, lest you may avoid justice;

And he also says:

(8. O you who believe! Stand out firmly for Allah as just witnesses; and let not the enmity and hatred of others make you avoid justice. Be just, that is nearer to Taqwa; and have Taqwa of Allah. Verily, Allah is Well-Acquainted with what you do.) [Al-Maaidah:8]

It is sought from a Muslim that he be from amongst the people of justice. And from the categories of those who will be shaded by Allaah on the day there will be no shade except for His shade is the just imaam, as it came in the saheehayn from the hadith of Abu Hurairah may Allaah be pleased with him. So for this reason we must be just in the ahkaam (Islamic rulings). So let’s say for example, that a person comes to you and says to you, “So and so, meaning a man from the people of bidah (innovation) and from the people of ma’aasee (disobedience) and fisq (immorality) and fujur (lewdnees) and so on, he says such and such”. And what he says happens to be the truth, so you say it’s the truth. He’s correct even if he is who he is (inovator sinner, etc). This is justice. And if a person comes to you and says Shaykh so and so says such and such and such, and this Shaykh is known for his knowledge, taqwa, righteousness, and uprightness; however, he says an incorrect statement. So you say it’s incorrect. He made a mistake and he made ijtihaad, however this statement of his is not correct. This is from being fair and just. You don’t say “this is a faasiq mubtadi (innovator), that’s it, everything he says is incorrect.” No. If he speaks the truth and you’re asked about him and what he said was correct, you say it’s correct.

And likewise if a person upon istiqaamah (uprightness) and deen utters a false statement, and you were asked about it, you say this is false. So this is from being just. And the prophet ﷺ said to Abi Dhar (may Allaah be pleased with him): “You are a man who still has some of the Jahiliyya (characteristics of ignorance) in him”. He ﷺ said that, although he acknowledged that he (Abu Dhar) had a truthful tongue. Despite this when he uttered an incorrect statement he said: “Verily you are a man who has some characteristics of jaahiliyah.”

We will suffice with this.

سبحانك اللهم و بحمدك. أشهد أن لا إله إلا أنت. أستغفرك و أتوب إليك

(O Allah, You are free from every imperfection; all praise is for You. I testify that none has the right to be worshiped except You. I ask Your forgiveness and turn to You in repentance).

[1] Abdullah bin Masud said: Allah’s Messenger ﷺ said, “Whoever takes a false oath so as to take the property of a Muslim (illegally) will meet Allah while He will be angry with him.” Al-Ashath said: By Allah, that saying concerned me. I had common land with a Jew, and the Jew later on denied my ownership, so I took him to the Prophet ﷺ who asked me whether I had a proof of my ownership. When I replied in the negative, the Prophet ﷺ asked the Jew to take an oath. I said, “O Allah’s Messenger! He will take an oath and deprive me of my property.” So, Allah revealed the following verse: “Verily! Those who purchase a little gain at the cost of Allah’s covenant and their oaths.” (3.77)

Benefited from: Shaikh Abu Abdillah Muhammad Ba Jamaal (May Allah preserve him)


Translated by: Umm Yusuf bint Abu Bakr