UAE Friday sermon: Fatwas are not random opinions by unqualified individuals

A fatwa is a messaged delivered from Allah clarifying his decrees and orders and not a random opinion by unqualified individuals.

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A fatwa is a message delivered from Allah clarifying his decrees and orders, not a random opinion by unqualified individuals.

“Allah, the Almighty, took the responsibility of answering the questions of those who seek His guidance,” worshippers will be told in Friday’s sermon.

“Thus, He used to send His answers in the form of Ayas [Quranic verses] carrying adequate clarifications that meet the petitioners’ needs.”

Prophet Mohammed’s role was to make these rulings clear to people. As a verse from the Quran says: “And We have not revealed to you the Book, [O Mohammed], except for you to make clear to them that wherein they have differed and as guidance and mercy for a people who believe.”

Prophet Mohammed was authorised by Allah to take the responsibility of issuing fatwas, which the sermon will describe as “such a demanding work that requires highly knowledgeable people to undertake”.

Muslim scholars have always been very careful about issuing fatwas and “if they were not sure about a matter, they would not dare to talk lest they would cause any harm and bear its burden”.

A mufti (one who issues fatwa) should therefore be knowledgeable, wise and insightful.

“He must build his reasoning on evidence of the circumstances and habits and should have sound knowledge about the culture of each community he is giving fatwa in,” the sermon will say.

“Another requirement for a scholar to be authorised to give fatwa is that other scholars must testify his competence to do so.”

As the scholar Imam Malik once said: “I did not sit to give fatwa before 70 of the Medina scholars first witnessed to my competence in doing so.”

newsdesk@thenational.ae