Dignifying Scholars Is Part of Exalting Allah - I

Scholars in our Sharee’ah have a supreme, invulnerable, and sublime rank. They are the successors of the Messenger in his nation. They are the heirs of the Prophet in his wisdom, and the revivers of what obsoleted from his Sunnah. Furthermore, they well maintained and served the Holy Quran. They invite those who have gone astray to guidance and tolerate the harm incurred to them while conveying their mission. With the Quran, they bring the dead hearts to life, enlighten those who do not want to hear the truth with the light of Allah. They saved many souls from the evil of Satan. What a beautiful impact they have left despite the intransigence of some people (Quoted from Imam Ahmad’s statement).

Scholars are the guardians of the religion from Bid’ah (innovation) and thereby protecting it from distortion and falsification. They are the honest people who convey this knowledge to every generation and defend the Holy Quran against distortion and misinterpretation. Allah the Almighty assigned them to preserve His Religion. Without them and their efforts, the Sharee’ah would have been voided, and its rulings would have been invalidated. They are the essence in referring to them as influential people and people of authority in every era. They are the rulers who were meant by the saying of Allah the Almighty (What means): {O you who have believed, obey Allah and obey the Messenger and those in authority among you.} [Quran 4:59]

Scholars in the Quran and Sunnah

Islam and the Quran have raised the rank of scholars, and our Lord praised them in His Book saying (what means): {Allah will raise those who have believed among you and those who were given knowledge, by degrees.} [Quran 58:11] Allah the Almighty considered their witness to the most significant thing which Tawheed (Oneness of Allah) and sincerity to Him; Allah Says (what means): {Allah witnesses that there is no deity except Him, and [so do] the angels and those of knowledge – [that He is] maintaining [creation] in justice. There is no deity except Him, the Exalted in Might, the Wise.} [Quran 3:18]

Imam Al-Qurtubi  may  Allah  have  mercy  upon  him said: “In this verse, there is evidence of the virtue of knowledge, and the honor/merit of scholars. Because if there were anyone more honorable than scholars, Allah would have associated them with His Name and the name of His Angels as He associated the names of scholars.

Allah distinguished them and raised them above others. Allah the Almighty said (what means): {Say, “Are those who know equal to those who do not know?”} [Quran 39:9] Of course not. Because they are the people who fear Allah: {Only those fear Allah, from among His servants, who have knowledge.} [Quran 35:28]

As the Quran praised them, the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) also commended them with the greatest praise in his Sunnah as mentioned in the Hadith narrated by Mu'awiya  may  Allah  be  pleased  with  him: “When Allah wills good for anyone, He bestows upon him the Fiqh (Jurisprudence) of the religion”; and the Hadith of Abu Hurairah  may  Allah  be  pleased  with  him: “Whoever treads a path in search of knowledge, Allah makes the way to paradise easy for him.” [Abu Dawood and Al-Tirmidhi]

Also, the Hadith of Abu Umamah, may Allah be pleased with him, that reads: “The superiority of the scholar over the worshiper is like my superiority over the least of you.” Besides, Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) said: “Indeed Allah, His Angels, the inhabitants of the heavens and the earths, even the ant in its hole, even the fish, supplicate and ask forgiveness for the one who teaches good to the people.” [Al-Tirmidhi, and Sheikh Al-Albani classified it as Saheeh (authentic)]

The Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) said: “The scholars are the heirs of the Prophets, for the Prophets did not leave behind a Dinar or Dirham; instead they left behind knowledge, so whoever takes it, he takes an outstanding share.”). [Abu Dawood and Al-Tirmidhi]

A poet said:

None has the superiority except the people of knowledge, as they guide those who seek guidance.

The value of everyone depends on what he can do properly. However, the ignorant are enemies to the people of knowledge.

Thus, you should acquire knowledge that will make you live forever; people die, but the people of knowledge are alive (i.e. people keep mentioning their names and supplicate for their forgiveness after their death).

Imam Ibn al-Qayyim  may  Allah  have  mercy  upon  him said in his book (I'laam Al-Muwaqqi'een 'an Rabbil 'Aalameen): “Scholars on earth are like the stars in the sky; by them, the lost people are guided in the darkness. Besides, the people’s need for them is greater than their need for food and drink.”

The Scholars Are the Awliya’ of Allah (Allies of Allah)

Due to all these merits and high rank of the scholars, they were the most deserving people to be the allies of Allah.

Imam Abu Haneefah said: “If the jurists are not Allah’s Awliya’, then Allah has no Wali (singular of Awliya’).

Ash-Shaafi’i said: “If the jurists are not Allah’s Awliya’ in the Hereafter, then Allah has no Wali.”

‘Ikrimah  may  Allah  be  pleased  with  him said: “Beware of harming any of the scholars, for whoever harms a scholar, it is as if he has harmed the Messenger of Allah  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ).”

Ubaydullah ibn Ja’far said: “The scholars are the beacons of the nations; the people are guided by their light.”

Dignifying Scholars Is Part of Exalting Allah - II

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