Jihad According to the Classical Scholars

From Muhammad, Messenger of Allah, to Jaifar and 'Abd, sons of al-Julanda, and may peace be upon those who follow Allah's guidance. To proceed, I invite you both to Islam; accept Islam and you will attain salvation, for I am Allah's Messenger to all mankind so that I may warn those who are alive and establish (Allah's) word over the unbelievers. If you declare your Islam I will appoint you both as governors [of your lands], but if you refuse then (know that) your dominion is only fleeting, and my horsemen will dismount in your courtyard, and my Prophethood will prevail over your dominion.

How Imam ‘Izz al-Din Ibn ‘Abd al-Salam* Held the Ruler to Account

I later asked [‘Izz al-Din Ibn ‘Abd al-Salam] when he had returned from the Sultan and had publically done this good: ‘My master how are you?’ he replied, My son, I saw [the Sultan] in that grand state and wanted to humiliate him in case he puffed himself up with pride.’ I then asked him: ‘My master did you fear him?’ He replied, ‘My son, I swear by Allah, when I recalled Allah’s Majesty in my heart, the Sultan became like a kitten in front of me!’…”

Imam Ghazali’s Views on the Importance of the Caliphate/Imamate

"Let it be noted of the first generation, as to how the Companions (رضي الله عنهم) hastened after the death of the Messenger of Allah ﷺ to appoint the Imam and contract the pledge of allegiance, and how they believed that it was a conclusive obligation (farḍ), a right and mandated (wājib) with immediacy and urgency, as well as how they left the preparation of the Messenger of Allah ﷺ (for burial) through being busy with it (appointing the Imam)."

Is the Caliphate Imperative Mentioned in the Qur’an?

“Al-Qurtubi, as well as other scholars, said that this Āyah (2:30) proves the obligation of appointing a Khalīfah to pass judgements on matters of dispute between people, to aid the oppressed against the oppressor, to implement the Islamic penal code and to forbid evil. There are many tasks that can only be fulfilled by appointing the Imam, and what is necessary in performing an obligation, is an obligation itself.” [Tafsir Ibn Kathir, Vol. 1 p. 185]

The Four Sunni Imams Agree that the Muslims Must Have a Caliph

In his book The Mercy in the Difference of the Four Sunni Schools of Islamic Law, Qāḍī Ṣafadī* writes: The Imams [Abū Ḥanīfah, Al-Shāfi‘ī, Mālik and Aḥmad bin Ḥanbal] agree that having a ruler [caliph] is an obligation and that the Muslims must have a ruler to establish the practices of the dīn and to … Continue reading The Four Sunni Imams Agree that the Muslims Must Have a Caliph

Abū ‘Ubayd on the Rights of the Ruler and the Ruled

In Kitāb al-Amwāl (Book of State Revenue), Abū ‘Ubayd al-Qāsim ibn Sallām* provides us with an accurate record of legal precedents laid down in the first two centuries of Islam, in particular those pertaining to the sources of revenue and the avenues of public expenditure. The book is essential for every student of Islamic law, … Continue reading Abū ‘Ubayd on the Rights of the Ruler and the Ruled

The Political Sunnah of the Prophet ﷺ: Part 5 – The ‘Constitution’ of Madina

As we have seen in the previous parts of this series of posts, the Prophet ﷺ laid out for us in his sayings and practice a way of living which includes a political dimension – his political Sunnah. The classical scholars have authored numerous books on how our dīn determines we should deal with economic … Continue reading The Political Sunnah of the Prophet ﷺ: Part 5 – The ‘Constitution’ of Madina

The Political Sunnah of the Prophet ﷺ: Part 4 – A Coup in Madina

We will see in this article that what occurred in Medina was in fact a coup in which the Messenger of Allah ﷺ seized power by gaining the support of men and women from two of the most powerful factions of the city just before someone else was about to be crowned king.

The Political Sunnah of the Prophet ﷺ: Part 3

In the previous two posts in this series (part 1 and part 2), we examined the Shari‘ah evidences that show how the Sunnah of the Prophet ﷺ was not only restricted to how we perform the prayer, pilgrimage and other acts of worship, but also in how to govern, run an economy etc. and in … Continue reading The Political Sunnah of the Prophet ﷺ: Part 3

Imam al-Shatibi*: The Shari‘ah is Allah’s Best Blessing and Gift to Us

“All praise is for Allah, who rescued us from the darkness of ignorance through the illumination of knowledge, and through it He granted us the discernment to avoid falling into erroneous deception. He laid down for us in the sharī‘a of Muhammad a lofty standard and a manifest guide. This was the best of His … Continue reading Imam al-Shatibi*: The Shari‘ah is Allah’s Best Blessing and Gift to Us