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Monday, September 28, 2020

Believers! Do not deviate from justice. Surely Allah is well aware of what you do

Justice is the hallmark of cohesion in a society. Many a people and civilizations have vanished for they were punished for not upholding justice and for protecting the rich and punishing the poor. The life of people before the advent of Islam was life only for the rich, while the poor were persecuted. Baby girls were buried alive soon after their birth and women deprived of their rights as humans. 

The entire canvas changed with the advent of Islam and strict Divine commandments were revealed and are contained in Quran for upholding justice or 'Adl (عدل‎). The concept of justice in Islam means selfless justice even if one has to sacrifice himself, his family or his tribe for upholding the true justice. Islam even emphasizes doing justice to people who hate you or to whom you have an aversion. But no less is required of you by the higher moral law.

Herein under we are posting two of the many verses from Quran that ask believers to uphold justice for Allah is well aware of what all they do:

يٰۤـاَيُّهَا الَّذِيۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡا كُوۡنُوۡا قَوَّامِيۡنَ بِالۡقِسۡطِ شُهَدَآءَ لِلّٰهِ وَلَوۡ عَلٰٓى اَنۡفُسِكُمۡ اَوِ الۡوَالِدَيۡنِ وَالۡاَقۡرَبِيۡنَ​ ؕ اِنۡ يَّكُنۡ غَنِيًّا اَوۡ فَقِيۡرًا فَاللّٰهُ اَوۡلٰى بِهِمَا​ فَلَا تَتَّبِعُوا الۡهَوٰٓى اَنۡ تَعۡدِلُوۡا ​ۚ وَاِنۡ تَلۡوٗۤا اَوۡ تُعۡرِضُوۡا فَاِنَّ اللّٰهَ كَانَ بِمَا تَعۡمَلُوۡنَ خَبِيۡرًا‏ 
"Believers! Be upholders of justice, and bearers of witness to truth for the sake of Allah, even though it may either be against yourselves or against your parents and kinsmen, or the rich or the poor: for Allah is more concerned with their well-being than you are. Do not, then, follow your own desires lest you keep away from justice. If you twist or turn away from (the truth), know that Allah is well aware of all that you do." (Surah 4. An-Nisaa: 135)

The substance and commandment of Allah of this verse and its explanation is similar to another Divine commandment mentioned in 8th verse of Surah 5. Al-Maida:

يٰۤـاَيُّهَا الَّذِيۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡا كُوۡنُوۡا قَوَّا امِيۡنَ لِلّٰهِ شُهَدَآءَ بِالۡقِسۡطِ​ وَلَا يَجۡرِمَنَّكُمۡ شَنَاٰنُ قَوۡمٍ عَلٰٓى اَ لَّا تَعۡدِلُوۡا​ ؕ اِعۡدِلُوۡا هُوَ اَقۡرَبُ لِلتَّقۡوٰى​ وَاتَّقُوا اللّٰهَ​ ؕ اِنَّ اللّٰهَ خَبِيۡرٌۢ بِمَا تَعۡمَلُوۡنَ‏ 
"Believers! Be upright bearers of witness for Allah, and do not let the enmity of any people move you to deviate from justice. Act justly, that is nearer to God-fearing. And fear Allah. Surely Allah is well aware of what you do."

It is not enough for believers to uphold justice themselves: they are expected to be its standard-bearers. They are supposed not merely to practice justice in their own dealings but to strive for its triumph. They have to do all within their power to ensure that injustice is eradicated and replaced by equity and justice. A true believer is required to be the pillar supporting the establishment of right and justice.

The testimony of the believers should be solely for the sake of God. Their testimony should not be biased in favour of any of the parties concerned, they should not use any opportunity for personal aggrandizement, and they should not seek to please anyone but God.

The judges in a Muslim society should not allow the fact that a man is rich to prejudice you in his favour or against him, and do not, out of misplaced compassion, favour the poor man at the expense of the truth. Some people may be inclined to favour the rich, because they expect something from them. Some people may be inclined to favour the poor because they are generally helpless. Partiality in either case is wrong. Be just, without fear of favour. Both the rich and the poor are under Allah's protection as far as their legitimate interests are concerned, but they cannot expect to be favoured at the expense of others. And He can protect their interests far better than any man. If criminals and lawbreakers are allowed to evade justice, the moral fabric of that society starts to break which one day may lead to anarchy and lawlessness. 

Javed Ahmad Ghamidi Explanation:
The implication is that not only should every Muslim adhere to truth and justice, but also if truth and justice require his testimony he should fulfill this demand even if this means endangering his life. He should speak the truth and submit to the truth. He should be just, bear witness to justice and not adopt anything in his beliefs and deeds except what is true and just. So much so, even his animosity to a nation should not induce him to swerve from truth and justice. Writes Imam Amin Ahsan Islahi:
… The greatest weapon used by Satan to lead people away from the truth is to try to instill enmity between them. It was merely because of enmity with the Ishmaelites and the Muslims that the Jews broke all their promises and covenants which they were made witnesses to. For this reason, Muslims were bound in the covenant that they would safeguard themselves from this mischief of Satan: they must treat and behave justly with both friends and foes. (Amin Ahsan Islahi, Tadabbur-i Qur’an, vol. 2, 471)
Justice assumes such prominence in the Qur'ān that it is regarded as one of the reasons why Allah created the earth. The demands that the Quran makes upon individuals to uphold justice and oaths is extraordinary, transcending all bonds of family and society. While justice is something that one demands for oneself, more importantly, it is something to be fulfilled for others, regardless of the cost to oneself, one's relatives or one's own community.

Remember: A man dies when he refuses to stand up for that which is right. A man dies when he refuses to stand up for justice. A man dies when he refuses to take a stand for that which is true.

May Allah help us understand Qur'an and help us to act upon the commandments of Allah contained therein. Aameen.

Please listen to an enlightening khutba by eminent Muslim scholar, exegete of the Quran and linguist Nouman Ali Khan:
For more Selected Verses, please refer to our reference page: Selected Verses from the Qur'an

You may also refer to our Reference Pages for knowing more about Islam and Quran.
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Reading the Holy Quran should be a daily obligation of a Muslim - Reading it with translation will make it meaningful. But reading its Exegesis / Tafsir will make you understand it fully.

An effort has been made to gather explanation / exegesis of the surahs of the Holy Qur'an from authentic sources and then present a least possible condensed explanation of the surah. In that:
  • The plain translation has been taken from the Holy Quran officially published by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. [1]
  • The exegesis of the chapters of the Holy Quran is mainly based on the "Tafhim al-Qur'an - The Meaning of the Qur'an" by one of the most enlightened scholars of the Muslim World Sayyid Abul Ala Maududi. [2]  
In order to augment and add more explanation as already provided by [2], additional input has been interjected from following sources: 
  • Towards Understanding the Quran
  • Tafsir Ibn Khatir
  • Muhammad Asad Translation
  • Javed Ahmad Ghamidi / Al Mawrid
  • Al-Quran, Yusuf Ali Translation
  • Verse by Verse Qur'an Study Circle
In addition the references of  other sources which have been explored have also been given above. Those desirous of detailed explanations and tafsir (exegesis), may refer to these sites.

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