How Allah Expects us to Judge Matters and the Consequences of Zulm (Oppression)

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم


 وَهَلْ أَتَاكَ نَبَؤُاْ ٱلْخَصْمِ إِذْ تَسَوَّرُواْ ٱلْمِحْرَابَ 

 إِذْ دَخَلُواْ عَلَىٰ دَاوُودَ فَفَزِعَ مِنْهُمْ قَالُواْ لاَ تَخَفْ خَصْمَانِ بَغَىٰ بَعْضُنَا عَلَىٰ بَعْضٍ فَٱحْكُمْ بَيْنَنَا بِٱلْحَقِّ وَلاَ تُشْطِطْ وَٱهْدِنَآ إِلَىٰ سَوَآءِ ٱلصِّرَاطِ

 إِنَّ هَذَآ أَخِي لَهُ تِسْعٌ وَتِسْعُونَ نَعْجَةً وَلِي نَعْجَةٌ وَاحِدَةٌ فَقَالَ أَكْفِلْنِيهَا وَعَزَّنِي فِي ٱلْخِطَابِ 

 قَالَ لَقَدْ ظَلَمَكَ بِسُؤَالِ نَعْجَتِكَ إِلَىٰ نِعَاجِهِ وَإِنَّ كَثِيراً مِّنَ ٱلْخُلَطَآءِ لَيَبْغِيۤ بَعْضُهُمْ عَلَىٰ بَعْضٍ إِلاَّ ٱلَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ وَعَمِلُواْ ٱلصَّالِحَاتِ وَقَلِيلٌ مَّا هُمْ وَظَنَّ دَاوُودُ أَنَّمَا فَتَنَّاهُ فَٱسْتَغْفَرَ رَبَّهُ وَخَرَّ رَاكِعاً وَأَنَابَ 

 فَغَفَرْنَا لَهُ ذَلِكَ وَإِنَّ لَهُ عِندَنَا لَزُلْفَىٰ وَحُسْنَ مَـآبٍ 

 يٰدَاوُودُ إِنَّا جَعَلْنَاكَ خَلِيفَةً فِي ٱلأَرْضِ فَٱحْكُمْ بَيْنَ ٱلنَّاسِ بِٱلْحَقِّ وَلاَ تَتَّبِعِ ٱلْهَوَىٰ فَيُضِلَّكَ عَن سَبِيلِ ٱللَّهِ إِنَّ ٱلَّذِينَ يَضِلُّونَ عَن سَبِيلِ ٱللَّهِ لَهُمْ عَذَابٌ شَدِيدُ بِمَا نَسُواْ يَوْمَ ٱلْحِسَابِ 

One day, as David was praying in his prayer niche, he ordered his guards not to allow anyone to interrupt him, but two men managed to enter and disturb him. “Who are you?” he asked. One of the men said: “Do not be frightened. We have a dispute and have come for your judgment.” David said: “What is it?” The first man said: “This is my brother, has ninety nine sheep, and I have one. He gave it to me but took it back.” David, without hearing from the other party said: “He did you wrong by taking the sheep back, and many partners oppress one another, except for those who are believers.”

The two men vanished like a cloud, and David realized that they were two angels sent to him to teach him a lesson. He should not have passed judgment without hearing from the opposing party.

Almighty Allah told us of this incident: And has the news of the litigants reached you? When they climbed over the wall into (his) Mihrab (a praying place or a private room). When they entered in upon David, he was terrified of them, they said: Fear not! (We are) two litigants, one of whom has wronged the other; therefore judge between us with truth, and treat us not with injustice, and guide us to the Right Way.”

“Verily, this is my brother (in religion) has ninety nine ewes, while I have only one ewe, and he says: ‘Hand it over to me,’ and he overpowered me in speech.”

David said immediately without listening to the opponent: “He has wronged you in demanding your ewe in addition to his ewes. And, verily, many partners oppress one another, except those who believe and do righteous good deeds, and they are few.”

And David guessed that We have tried him and he sought Forgiveness of his Lord, and he fell down prostrate and turned to Allah in repentance. So We forgave him that, and verily, for him is a near access to Us, and a good place of final return Paradise.

O David! Verily! We have placed you as a successor on earth, so judge you between men in truth and justice. And follow not your desire for it will mislead you from the Path of Allah. Verily! Those who wander astray from the Path of Allah shall have a severe torment, because they forgot the Day of Reckoning. (Ch 38:21-26 Quran).

“Do not oppress!”

In any matter we judge we are expected to ask both sides regarding the dispute before judging or deciding against a party, otherwise we would be guilty of Zulm (oppression, cruelty, exploitation).

The Messenger Muhammad (saw) said “Listen to me and you will be saved, do not oppress! Do not oppress! Do not oppress!”

“God does not do injustice to anyone. It is the people who do injustice to themselves”[11 : 101]

“..Whoever does not rule by what Allah has revealed, they are the oppressors..” [5 : 45]

“None but the oppressors reject our revelation..” [29 : 49]

“..Do not make mockery of each other whether women to women or men to men, nor slander each other or use offensive nicknames, the evil action is to call someone a Kafir after he has believed; those who do not desist are oppressors.. “[49 : 11]

“Who is a greater oppressor than he who forbids Zikr (i.e. studying religion, culturing, teaching and preaching) in the mosque..” [2 : 114]

Punishment of Oppressors

“Whoever oppresses we shall punish and when he returns to his Lord He will punish him with a punishment unheard of (Before)..” [18 : 87]

“The day that the oppressor will bite at his hands, he will say ‘Oh! Would that I had taken a (straight) path with the Messenger! Ah! Woe is me! Would that I had never taken such a one for a Friend!” [25 : 27-8]

“No intercessors will the oppressors have, who could be listened to” [40 : 18]

the Prophet Muhammad (saw) said: “My intercession will never reach two kinds of people from my Ummah: an Oppressive, aggressive ruler and one who lies about the rules of Allah but does not comply with his fabrications himself”.

the Prophet Muhammad (saw) said: “Allah will delay punishment of the oppressor but when He (swt) punishes him he will never escape” and He (saw) quoted from the Qur’an: “Verily the punishment of Allah is severe for the people of a city whose residents are oppressors” [11 : 103]

the Messenger Muhammad (saw) said: “Allah will punish those who torture people.”

Sharing the punishment – Al-Musharakah Bil-A’zaab: Allah (swt) says: “When Ye have done oppression, it will avail you nothing that day and ye shall be partners (with the evil companion or oppressor) in punishment” [43 : 39]. Allah (swt) also says: “For the oppressors their portion is like unto the portion of their fellows (of earlier generations)” [51 : 59]

The family of the oppressor – Azwaj Al-Zalamah: Allah (swt) says: “Bring ye up, it shall be said, the oppressors and their wives, and the things they worshipped besides Allah” [37 : 221]

Removing security – Al-Zulm Yahjub Al-Aamin: Allah (swt) says: “It is those who believe and confuse not their beliefs with oppression – that are (truly) in security” [6:82]

Destruction of cities – Halak Al-Qura: Allah (swt) says: “Nor was thy Lord the one to destroy a city until He had sent to its centre a messenger rehearsing to them our signs: nor are we going to destroy a city except when its members practice oppression” [28 : 59]

Destruction of Nations – Damar Al-Qura bi-Sabab Al-Zulm: Allah (swt) says: “How many populations did I give respite which were given to oppression? In the end I punished them. To me is the destination (of all)” [22 : 48]

When Oppression Isnt Stoped

Abu Bakr Siddique (ra) delivered a sermon in which he said: ‘Oh people, you may recite this verse: “Oh believers watch out but you will not be accounted for the misguidance of others” but I heard the Messenger Muhammad say: ‘if people see an oppressor and do not stop him Allah will punish them all’’ [Tirmidhi]

The Messenger of Allah (saw) said: “How could Allah bless people who do not ensure the rights of the weak (oppressed) from the harsh (oppressors)”. [Baihaqi]

The Prophet Muhammad (saw) said: “If you see my Ummah afraid to say to the oppressors, ‘You are oppressors’ Allah will desert them.”  [Ahmad]

The Messenger Muhammad (saw) said: “Whoever assists his own Qawm (i.e. groups, tribe, people) in oppression he is like the animal who has fallen down from a mountain suffering because of his sin (i.e. Because of his collaboration).” [Ahmad]

The Prophet Muhammad (saw) said: “Whoever assists, in any dispute, in oppression or collaborates with the oppressor he will continue with the anger of Allah until he perishes (dies).” [Ibn Majah]

The Prophet Muhammad (saw) said: “Allah ordered the angels to lash a servant 100 times in his grave. He supplicated to Allah until only one lash remained and then his grave filled with fire. When he was called (on the day of Judgement) he asked why he suffered and the angels said: you prayed without purity and you passed by the oppressed without supporting him”. [Ibn Hibban]

The Prophet Muhammad (saw) said: ‘Allah said “By my dignity and holiness I will punish the oppressor sooner or later and I will punish with him whosoever saw the oppressed and did nothing.’[Imam al Munzari]

The Messenger Muhammad (saw) supplicated to Allah on the day of Arafat for his Ummah for forgiveness and mercy and Allah responded: “I have granted forgiveness for your Ummah except for those who oppress each other”. [Ahmad]

The Prophet Muhammad (saw) said: “Command good and forbid evil otherwise you will supplicate and Allah will never respond to you.” [Ibn Maajah]

And in another narration, it is narrated upon the authority of Abu Ubaida that the Prophet Muhammad (saw) said: ”Except if you stand against the oppressors and force them to the truth.”

And Finally The Best of Actions

The Prophet Muhammad (saw) said to a man who asked him: “Which type of Jilhad is the best? That He (saw) said “A word of truth against a tyrant ruler.”[Ahmad]


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