A revelation like the Quran
from The Editing Community of Dr. Abdurrahman al-Muala
(translated by islamtoday.com)
The Sunnah is, according to the hadith scholars, everything that has been reported on him from God’s Messenger, God’s blessings and peace; from his statements, actions, tacit approvals, his personality, description of his appearance to his biography. It does not matter whether the information transmitted relates to something that happened before or after the start of his prophetic mission.
Explanation of this definition:
The prophet’s statements contain everything that the prophet said for different reasons on different occasions. For example, he said:
„Truly, the deeds are intentions, and each person receives only what they intended.“
The actions of the Prophet include everything the Prophet did that his companions told us about. This includes how he did the ablutions, how he did the prayers, and how he did Hağğ, the pilgrimage.
The tacit endorsements of the Prophet contain everything his companions said or did, to which he either agreed or which he at least did not reject. Everything that the prophet has tacitly approved is as valid as anything that he said or did himself.
An example of this endorsement was given to the companions when they were considerate in the Bani Quraidhah struggle in deciding when to pray. The Messenger of God had said to them,
„None of you should do your afternoon prayer before you arrive at Bani Quraidhah.“
The companions only reached Bani Quraidhah after sunset. Some of them took the Prophet’s words literally and postponed the afternoon prayer because they said, „We will not pray until we get there.“ Others understood that the Prophet only wanted to show them to hurry on their journey, so they stopped and prayed the afternoon prayers on time.
The Prophet learned how the two groups had decided, but he did not criticize either.
Regarding the personality of the Prophet, the following statement by Aishah (may God be pleased with her) is part of it:
“The Messenger of God was never indecent or vulgar, even on the market he was not loud. He never responded to insults by others with insults. Instead, he was always tolerant and forgiving. ”
The external description of the Prophet can be found in statements such as that of Anas (may God be pleased with him):
“The Messenger of God was neither excessively large nor was he small. It was neither particularly white nor black. His hair was neither very curly nor straight. ”
The relationship between the Sunnah and Revelation
The Sunnah is a revelation from God to his Prophet, God’s blessings and peace be upon him. In the Quran, God says:
„… remember the grace of God that He has shown you and what He has sent you from the book and from wisdom …“ (Quran 2: 231)
By wisdom is meant the Sunnah . The great lawyer al-Shafi’i said: „God mentions the book which is the Quran. I have heard from people who I consider to be authorities in the Quran that wisdom is the Sunnah of God’s Messenger, God’s blessing and peace be upon him. “ God says:
Truly, God was benevolent towards the believers, because He raised among them a messenger from among them to read out His verses and to purify them and to teach the book and the wisdom.
It is very clear from the previous verse that God revealed both the Quran and the Sunnah to the Prophet, and He commanded him to deliver both to man. The Prophet’s hadiths also prove the fact that the Sunnah is a revelation. Mak’huul reported that the Messenger of God said,
„God gave me the Quran and what resembles it in wisdom.“
Al-Miqdam b. Ma’die Karab reported that the Messenger of God said:
„I was given the book and something similar with it.“
Hisan b. Atiyyah reported that Gabriel used to come to the Prophet with the Sunnah when he came to him with the Quran.
The prophet’s opinion did not simply come from his own thoughts or considerations in a matter; it was what God revealed to him. In this regard, the Prophet was different from other people. He was supported by revelation. If he used his own judgment and it was right, God would have confirmed him, and if he had ever made a mistake in his way of thinking, God would have corrected him and led him to the truth.
For this reason, it is reported that Khalif Umar once said on the pulpit: „O people! The opinions of the Messenger of God were correct because God revealed them to him. As for our opinions, they are nothing but thoughts and conjectures . “
The revelation the Prophet received was of two types:
A. Informational revelation: God gave him something through revelation of one kind or another, as mentioned in the following Quran verses:
“And no one is entitled that God should speak to him except by inspiration or behind a curtain or by sending a messenger to reveal what He wants through His command. He is sublime, wise. ” (Quran 42:51)
Aisha reported that al-Harith b. Hisham asked the Prophet how the revelation came to him, and the Prophet replied:
“Sometimes the angel comes to me like the ringing of a bell and this is the most difficult for me. It weighs on me and I memorize what he says. And sometimes the angel comes in the shape of a man and talks to me and I memorize what he says. “
“ I saw him when the revelation came to him on a very cold day it was over, his forehead was sweaty. ”
Sometimes he was asked something, but he remained silent until the revelation came to him, for example, when the Meccan idolaters asked him about the soul, the prophet remained silent until God revealed:
And they ask you about the soul. Say: „The soul is a matter of my Lord; and you are given little of knowledge.“ (Quran 17:85)
He was also asked how to divide the inheritance, but he did not answer until God revealed:
“God prescribes you regarding your children:…” (Quran 4:11)
B. Confirming revelation: Here the prophet made his own judgment on a matter. If his opinion was right, a revelation came to confirm it, and if he was wrong, a revelation came to improve him by coming just like any other informative revelation. The only difference here is that the revelation came as the result of an act that the Prophet first did on his own initiative.
In such cases, it was left to the Prophet to maintain his own discretion in a matter. If the right person had chosen, then God confirmed his choice through revelation. If he made a wrong choice, God corrected him to preserve the inviolability of the faith. God would never have allowed His Messenger to tell others about an error, because that could have made his followers fall into error. This would have violated the wisdom behind sending envoys, which was that people will no longer have an argument against God in the future. In this way the envoy was protected from falling into error, because if he were ever wrong, a revelation would have come to correct him.
The Prophet’s companions knew that the tacit approval by the Prophet was indeed God’s approval, because if they ever did something that was not Islam during the Prophet’s lifetime, a revelation would have come what they had done , would have condemned.
Jabir said: „We used to practice coitus interruptus  during the lifetime of the Messenger of God.“ Sufyan, one of the narrators of this hadith, commented: „If something like this were forbidden, the Quran would have prohibited it.“
 Coitus Interruptus: Retracting the penis before ejaculation during intercourse. – IslamReligion.com
Die Sunnah in Islamic Law
The difference between the Sunnah and the Quran
The Quran is the basis of Islamic law. It is the wonderful speech of God that has been revealed to the Messenger, God’s blessings and peace on him, through the angel Gabriel. It has been transmitted to us through so many reliable sources that its historical credibility is absolutely unquestionable. It was written as a separate book and its recitation is a form of worship.
As for the Sunnah, it is everything else that comes from God’s Messenger except the Quran. It explains and provides details of the laws that are in the Quran. It also provides examples of the practical applicability of these laws. So it is either a direct revelation from God or decisions of the Messenger, which were then confirmed by revelation. Hence the source of all Sunnahs is revelation.
The Quran is the revelation that is formally recited as an act of worship, and the Sunnah is revelation that is not recited. So the Sunnah, like the Quran, is a revelation that must be followed and maintained.
The Quran must be given priority in two ways. On the one hand, the Quran miraculously consists of the exact words of God right down to the last verse. The sunnah, however, does not necessarily have to consist of the exact word of God, but in the meaning explained to us by the prophet.
The Sunnah’s Position in Islamic Law
During the envoy’s lifetime, the Quran and Sunnah were the only sources of Islamic law.
The Quran provides the general orders that form the basis of the law without going into all the details and secondary legislation, with the exception of a few orders that go with the general principles. These orders are not subject to change over time or changing circumstances of people. The Quran comes with the doctrine of faith, stipulates worship, mentions the stories of the past, and provides moral guidelines.
The Sunnah is in accordance with the Quran. It explains the meanings of what is unclear in the text, provides details for what is generally described, specifies what is general, and explains orders and goals. The Sunnah also comes with orders that the Quran does not provide, but which always harmonize with its principles, and they always promote the goals that are emphasized in the Quran.
The Sunnah is a practical expression of what is in the Quran. This expression can take various forms. Sometimes it is something that the Messenger of God did. Another time it is a statement he made in response to a question. Sometimes it is a statement or action by one of his companions, which he has neither prevented nor refused. On the contrary, he remained silent or expressed his approval.
The Sunnah explains and clarifies the Quran in a variety of ways. It explains how to perform worship and how to apply the law. God commands prayer to the faithful without mentioning the times when the prayers are to be performed or the manner in which they are to be prayed. The envoy made this clear with his own prayers and by teaching Muslims how to pray. He said, „Pray as you saw me pray.“
God made Hağğ, the pilgrimage, a duty without explaining its rites. The Messenger of God explained this by saying:
„Take the rituals of the Hağğ from me.“
God made zakat tax compulsory without mentioning what types of assets and products are taxed. God also does not mention the minimum amount of property that is subject to tax. But the Sunnah illustrates all of this.
The Sunnah specifies general statements from the Quran. God says, “God prescribes for your children: there is one male sex (inheritance) as much as two female sexes …” (Quran 4:11)
The wording is generally applicable to every family and makes every child to inherit his or her parents. The Sunnah further specifies this rule by excluding the children of the prophets. The Messenger of God said:
“We prophets leave no inheritance. Whatever we leave behind is alms. ”
The Sunnah describes inaccurate statements of the Quran in more detail. God says:
“… and if you can’t find any water, look for pure sand and rub your face and hands with it… (Quran 5: 6)
The verse does not mention the size of the hand, leaving the question of whether you can put your hands up to rub on the wrist or over the forearm. The Sunnah makes it clear and shows that it is up to the wrist, because Gotts‘ emissary did so when he made Tayammum. The Sunnah also emphasizes what is in the Quran or provides secondary legislation for a law mentioned in it. This contains all hadiths that indicate that prayer, Zakah tax, fasting and Hağğ are mandatory.
An example of how Sunnah provides subordinate rules for an arrangement found in the Quran is that it is forbidden to sell fruit before it starts to ripen. The basis of this law is the statement of the Quran:
“Do not deceive yourself of one another from your assets! It is different if it is a business that you conclude by mutual agreement. ” (Quran 4:29)
The Sunnah contains regulations that are not mentioned in the Quran and do not clarify what is mentioned in the Quran. An example of this is the ban on eating donkey meat and the meat of predators. Another example is the ban on marrying a woman and her aunt at the same time. You have to stick to these and other regulations that Sunnah provides.
The Commitment to Adhere to the Sunnah
A requirement of belief in prophecy is to accept everything that the Messenger of God said as true. God chooses His messengers from among His servants to deliver His Law to humanity. God says:
„… God knows best who He entrusts His message to …“ (Quran 6: 124)
God also says:
„… are the messengers responsible for anything other than the clear proclamation?“ (Quran 16:35)
The Messenger was protected from errors in all his actions. God has saved his tongue from saying anything other than the truth. God has protected his limbs from doing something that is not right.
God has protected him from approving anything contrary to Islamic law. He is the most complete creature of God. This is clear from how God describes him in the Quran:
“By the star, when it whizzes down! Your companion is neither confused, nor is he wrong, nor does he speak out of desire. Rather, it is a revelation that is given to him. ” (Quran 53: 1-4)
We see from the hadiths that no circumstances of any kind could prevent the prophet from telling the truth. Even if he was angry, it didn’t affect his language. He never said anything wrong, even if he wasn’t joking. His own interests never let him waver. The only goal he pursued was God’s pleasure.
Abdullah b. Amr b. al-Aas reported that he wrote down everything that the Messenger of God used to say. Then the Quraish tribe forbade him to do so when they said, „Do you write everything the Messenger of God says and he is only a man who speaks with satisfaction and with anger?“
Abdullah b. Amr stopped writing and told the messenger of God who said to him:
„Write, because with whose my soul is in his hand, only truth comes out here.“ … and he pointed to his mouth.
The Quran, the Sunnah and the consensus of the legal scholars all emphasize the fact that it is a duty to obey God’s Messenger. God says in the Quran:
“O you who believe, obey God and obey the Messenger and those who command you. And if you argue about something, bring it before God and the Messenger if you believe in God and the Last Day … ”(Quran 4:59)