Difference between scholars and commoners in deviant sects
Fatwa No: 1531

  • Fatwa Date:29-11-2007 - Thul-Qi'dah 20, 1428
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Question

Is there a difference between the scholars and commoners in deviant sects? If so, how can we apply the verse in which Allaah The Almighty Says (what means): {And they will say, "Our Lord, indeed we obeyed our masters and our dignitaries, and they led us astray from the [right] way.} [Quran 33:67] and similar verses which join the subjects with their leaders [in punishment]?

Answer

All perfect praise be to Allaah, The Lord of the worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allaah, and that Muhammad, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, is His slave and messenger.

There is no difference between the scholars and the common people in deviant sects in terms of misguidance and deviation. However, those who misguide others will have a double share of punishment as the verse states. This means that they will incur punishment for their deviation and then will have more punishment because they misled the simple and common people. Allaah The Almighty Says (what means):

{But they will surely carry their [own] burdens and [other] burdens along with their burdens.} [Quran 29:13]

{So whoever does an atom's weight of good will see it, And whoever does an atom's weight of evil will see it.} [Quran 99:7-8]

Undoubtedly, the punishment for those who misguide others is greater and more severe. We seek refuge with Allaah The Almighty from people who misguide and their misguidance. Commenting on the verse in question, Ibn Katheer reported Taawoos may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  them as stating that "masters" refers to those who are honorable persons and leaders, while the "dignitaries" refers to scholars.

Allaah Knows best.

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