Characteristics of the Islamic legislation

Characteristics of the Islamic legislation.

Characteristics of the Islamic legislation

A divine source

The source of the Islamic religion is the Great Creator, Allah, who created man and the universe and all that it contains. Having a divine source affords it numerous advantages, including one of them being that Allah is the Creator and the Sustainer, so He Alone owns the right to legislate. Moreover, prophets and their followers referred legislation back to Allah alone, and rejected all other legislations. Allah states what the seal of the prophets and messengers (pbuh) used to say about Allah’s legislation: {Say (O Muhammad [sal-Allâhu ‘alayhi wa sallam]): “I am not a new thing among the Messengers (of Allâh, i.e. I am not the first Messenger) nor do I know what will be done with me or with you. I only follow that which is revealed to me, and I am but a plain warner.”}(Al-Ahqâf:9)

The Islamic Shari’ah applies to all of Allah’s creation, and that includes the Messenger of Allah, despite his high status and position of honor with Allah, since he too follows the laws that Allah revealed to him, and he was not an innovator. He followed Allah’s way and did nothing to contradict it.

The fact that Allah is The Creator means that He knows best those who He created. He says: {Should not He Who has created know? And He is the Most Kind and Courteous (to His slaves), the Well-Acquainted (with everything).} (al-Mulk:14)

He knows the natural disposition of His slaves, what reforms and what corrupts them, and what benefits and what harms them. None but the maker knows best about what he made. Allah says: {Say, “Do you know better or does Allâh (know better ... that they all were Muslims)?”}(al-Baqarah:140)


Anatoly Ondrboutc

Russian General
The religion of safety
“For the first time in my life I felt safe and secure, and that there is value to my life. I finally knew the meaning of a God who you do not see, but sees you wherever you are. He is watching over your actions and weighing them with a just balance so you will receive your right requital on the Day of Resurrection.”

The fact that Allah is the Legislator grants the legislation absolute justice and righteousness. Allah forbid that He favor a slave of His creation at the expense of another. Moreover, punishment in Islam is related to this world as well as to the Hereafter. Thus, whoever, for some reason or other, does not take his right or is not punished for an evil action in this worldly life will certainly be rewarded or punished in the Afterlife.


It is generally accepted that the purpose of a law is not achieved by it just being enacted. Rather, it depends on the manner in which the people respond to it; by adhering to it or by exceeding the limits. Moreover, that which is desired to be achieved by the law is not attained by merely perfecting its drafting and its provisions, but to be more precise, it is better accomplished by being put into practice by those whom it was aimed at, provided that they are motivated from their inside and in their hearts. This motivation comes from their faith in the justice of that law, and their satisfaction with it and, in the case of religion, their belief that they will receive rewards from the legislator for contentedly implementing His decrees and laws. Islamic legislation is founded on the individual’s satisfaction and personal convictions, and Allah also commands to satisfy and use convincing arguments with others when teaching Islam: 21] and speak to them an effective word (i.e. to believe in Allâh, worship Him, obey Him, and be afraid of Him) to reach their inner selves.(An-Nisâ’:63)21] So remind them (O Muhammad [sal-Allâhu ‘alayhi wa sallam]) – you are only one who reminds. 22] You are not a dictator over them(al-Ghaashiyah :21-22)

It is for this reason that the Prophet (pbuh) was specifically sent.The Prophet (pbuh) said: “Verily, I was sent to perfect honorable morals.”

It connects this world with the Hereafter

One of the characteristics which distinguish Islamic legislation from other man-made laws and human legislations is that it rewards and punishes both in this life and in the Hereafter. The reward or punishment is always greater in the Hereafter than in the worldly life. It is for this reason that a believer always experiences a strong incentive from inside that drives him to act according to the laws of Allah’s legislation and follow its orders and prohibitions. He knows very well that even if he could escape from the worldly punishment, Allah’s ever watchful eye never neglects anything and never sleeps, and people will be held accountable in the Hereafter for their deeds, whether good or bad. Allah says: Does he think that none can overcome him?(al-Balad:5)

He also says: Does he think that none sees him?(al-Balad:7)


Islamic law does not give precedence to the well-being of one party over the other, and it is not biased to one person at the expense of another. Rather, Islam resolves the biggest problem faced by many human societies that do not follow it as a method and approach in their lives. This is the problem of the conflict between individual and public well-being in society, since we find that some communities have given the priority of the well-being of an individual in absolute terms, as is the case in the capitalist system. The socialist system, on the other hand, tends to give priority to the well-being of the society and completely neglects that of the individual. It confiscates an individual’s natural disposition related to privacy, independence and acquisitions. His character and talents thus wither, and his abilities and faculties rust. Islam, however, established its legislative system on the basis of a balance between these rights in the society. Islam takes into account the general well-being of the Muslim community, but at the same time does not ignore the demands of the Muslim individual. In the political spectrum, we find that the ruler or leader has the right to be completely obeyed by the ruled, but it is conditional on him being committed to ruling legitimately, taking into account the public well-being first and foremost, otherwise Islam withdraws this right from him. It is incumbent upon every citizen to thus obey the laws enforced by the ruler, should they not contradict the laws of Allah Almighty.

Consistency and flexibility

Islam is based on basic and fixed rules that do not change or alter. These are derived from Islam’s principal sources, the first of which is the Qur’an, since it is preserved by Allah from being corrupted: {Verily, We, it is We Who have sent down the Dhikr (i.e. the Qur’ân) and surely We will guard it (from corruption).{ ( al-Hijr:9)

Moreover, falsehood can never approach it: {Falsehood cannot come to it from before it or behind it, (it is) sent down by the All-Wise, Worthy of all praise (Allâh [Subhânahu wa Ta’âla]).}(Fussilat:42)

The second source is that of the Sunnah (the actions and sayings of the Prophet [pbuh]), also known as the Prophetic traditions, which has been meticulously preserved and recorded.


Berisha Bankmart

Thai Educator, who converted from Buddhism to Islam
The religion of dignity and honour
“Islam is a religion of safety, equality, freedom, fraternity, dignity and pride. This is clearly evident in its laws, principles and conduct. Fasting in Islam is not like fasting in other religions, because the problem of the person is not to just suppress the desires of his body, as monks do, until the body of one of them becomes like a moving skeleton. Islam disciplines the bodily desires and does not repress them. Fasting in Islam entails making the soul accustomed to maintaining patience and jihad against the sinful and forbidden desires, to observe God in secret and in public, and to taste deprivation and hunger, so as to become sympathetic towards the disadvantaged. Fasting is also a chance to give the body a break from satiety for this break is good for people where their health, soul and mind is concerned, and for the society to grow closer in its cooperation and unity. “

The texts of both these sources contain the general laws and legislations without giving the exact details related to the application of these laws, so leaving a wide space for the mujtahid (an Islamic scholar who is competent to interpret Islamic law by ijtihad, which is the making of a decision in Shari’ah due to personal effort, independently of any school of jurisprudence) so as to be able to take into consideration the different conditions and situations that prevail at any time. Islamic Shari’ah leaves the application of these broad lines open to produce a reality that is marked with flexibility. For what is important is to achieve the goals, regardless of the means by which they are attained, or the forms which they may take when they are achieved, as long as they do not violate a text or a principle of the Islamic law. It is for this reason that the application of the general purposes of Islamic Shari’ah is subject to a high degree of flexibility and they are also able to evolve. That is why there is nothing wrong with the occurrence of new laws which were not known before, but which were laid down due to the occurrence of events related to it.