Judicial Precedents of the Prophet (s.a.w)

Judicial Precedents of the Prophet (s.a.w)

Three essential powers for running a state are the legislative power (to make laws), the judicial power (to interpret the laws and decide matters accordingly) and the executive power (to implement the law and the decisions thereby). As far as the judicial power or authority is concerned, the Quran clearly states that the ultimate judicial authority belongs to the Almighty[1]. However, the Quran also clearly establishes the judicial authority of the Messengers delegated to them by their Lord[2], who must judge all matters according to the Book revealed to them[3]. One cannot be a believer if one does not accept Allah’s Rasool/Messenger as the final judicial authority[4].

As the first Supreme Judicial Authority the Islamic State, Allah’s Prophet/Messenger (s.a.w.) undoubtedly would have interpreted the Divine Law enshrined in the Quran and passed judgements accordingly on countless occasions in numerous matters, which can serve as ‘judicial precedents’ for the later judicial authorities, provided the precedents have been recorded and reported correctly. A ‘judicial precedent’ is a principle established in a previous case by a judicial authority/court that is either binding or persuasive for the same or other judicial authorities/courts when deciding subsequent cases with similar issues and facts. This principle of judicial precedents is now prevalent in the courts all over the world. It is not only that the judgements of Allah’s Messenger but also those of the courts of the rightly guided caliphs and the later Islamic Courts can serve as judicial precedents for today’s modern Islamic Courts, as the judgements of the supreme courts of the United Kingdom, the United States and other countries serve as judicial precedents for their courts.

[1] Al-Quran Surah 6: Verse 57; Surah 6: Verse 62; Surah 7: Verse 87; Surah 10: Verse 109; Surah 11: Verse 45; Surah 12: Verse 40; Surah 12: Verse 67; Surah 28: Verse 70; Surah 28: Verse 88; Surah 40: Verse 12]

[2] Al-Quran Surah 2: Verse 213; Surah 5: Verse 44; Surah 6: Verse 89; Surah 24: Verse 48; Surah 45: Verse 16

[3] Al-Quran Surah 4: Verse 105; Surah 5: Verse 42; Surah 5: Verses 44-45; Surah 5: Verses 47-49]

[4] Al-Quran Surah 4: Verse 65

2 thoughts on “Judicial Precedents of the Prophet (s.a.w)

  1. Asalamualaikum, jazakum Allahu khairan for providing these resources. I would like to point out that the link you provided for Duroos Lughat-ul-Arabia 3 is book 2, not 3. Thank you.

Leave a Reply