Episode 1: The defence of the Sunnah 1/2
Praise be to Allah, the Lord of the worlds, and peace and blessings be upon the leader of educators and the head of those whose faces and feet are white (from the effect of ablution); our Prophet Mohammed, and upon his family and all of his Companions.
In what is to follow:
Allah – Exalted in Highness – has put the Sunnah of His Prophet - peace be upon him – at a paramount status, and uppermost position, as He entrusted to him - peace be upon him - with the duty of mission, the function of elucidation, so the Almighty said: ((and We have sent down unto you the Message; that you may explain clearly to men what is sent for them ...)) [An-Nahl: 44]. And ‘elucidation’ is a generic term for meanings with combined roots and ramified branches:
One of them is: the elucidation of the same revelation by its manifestation through his tongue after it had been hidden.
The second one: the elucidation of its meaning and its interpretation to whoever had a need for that. He has also shown that the wrong-doing mentioned in His saying, Exalted He be: ((and confuse not their beliefs with wrong)) [Al An’am: 82], is false worship (1).
The third one: his actual elucidation, such as when he has elucidated prayer times to the asking person through his action (2).
The fourth: elucidation of what he has been asked about, concerning the provisions that are not in the Quran. The Quran then descends with their elucidation. Such as when he had been asked about the slandering of the spouse, the Quran came with the Li’aan (a solemn oath used in cases of unfaithfulness, and which attract a curse if untrue) and its equivalents (3).
The fifth: elucidation of what he has been asked about via inspiration, even though it is not Quran, such as when he had been asked about a man who entered the state of ritual Ihram in a cloak heavily embalmed with a saffron-based scent. Revelation came that he takes his cloak off and removes the effect of the scent (4).
The sixth: his elucidation of the provisions with the Sunnah as inception without question, such as when he prohibited donkey meats for them (5) and fixed term marriages (6).
The seventh: his elucidation to the people the permissibility of the thing by doing it himself, and not forbidding them to follow his example.
The eighth: his elucidation of the permissibility of the thing by approving it for them doing it while he is observing it, or teaching them that they do it.
The ninth: his elucidation of the permissibility of the thing spontaneously by keeping silent from prohibiting it, even though he does not authorize it verbally.
The tenth: that he arbitrates the Quran in affirming something, prohibiting it or permitting it, and formulates for that provision a set of conditions, impediments, restrictions, specific times, circumstances and particularities. The Lord –Exalted in Highness – then confers upon His Messenger its elucidation; such as His saying, Exalted He be: ((except for these, all others are lawful)) [An Nisa’ 24].
The allowance depends on the conditions of marriage, the absence of impediments, the time it is due and the suitability of the situation whereby it is lawful; so the Sunnah came with the elucidation of all that.
Everything he - peace be upon him - legislated for the nation is an elucidation from his part on behalf of Allah that this is his law and his religion, and there is no difference between what he reports from Him of rehearsed utterances and between His revelation, which is the equivalent of His words in terms of the obligation in following, and the contravention of the former is like the contravention of the latter (7).
(1) The Sahih of Bukhari: (32), and the Sahih of Muslim: (327).
(2) The Sahih of Muslim: (613).
(3) The Sahih of Bukhari: (4745).
(4) The Sahih of Bukhari: (1789), and the Sahih of Muslim: (1180).
(5) Abu Dawood: (4604), At-Tirmidhi: (2663), Ibn Hibbaan: (12), authenticated by Al-Haakim: (1/109), and Adh-Dhahabi approved it.
(6) The Sahih of Bukhari: (4216), and the Sahih of Muslim: (1407).
(7) I’laam Al-Muwaqqi’een: (4/97-104).