Worshipping something other than Allaah or something with Allaah are both Shirk
Fatwa No: 281401

  • Fatwa Date:10-4-2015 - Jumaadaa Al-Aakhir 21, 1436
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Question

Aslamualakaum Sheik, i need somone who is good with arbaic language and tafsir to answer this question posed. I love you site and always use it, so i pray that you are able to answer this, it is most likely easy for you With the premssion of Allah swt. but seems complex for me due to my limited knolwedge of tafsir and arabicThis is the verse 9:31They have taken their scholars and monks as lords besides Allah , and [also] the Messiah, the son of Mary. And they were not commanded except to worship one God; there is no deity except Him. Exalted is He above whatever they associate with Him.here are my few questions relating to this, 1) I know there is a hadith that talks about how the messenger of Allah said that the people of the book used to worship there monks becuse they made the halal haram and visa versa, but why is isa (as) mentioned here.2) Second, the word used is "min dunilallah", trnaslted as besides, What is the diffrence when Allah says besides Allah and with Allah.I heard somone say besides means that Allah is not included. This expalntion is good as it helps explain another verse that people bring up (see below), but in this verse why is it used, becuse people worship isa with Allah, 3) But the intrested thing to note is that at the end the word used is subhunnalllah amashurikoon, this means with Allah, so im worndering could the besides be used for only to monks and preists, and the with be used for Isa (as)4) Im a but conffused, as the christians keep saying that the Quran says mary is part of the trinty, using verses 5:116-117, but if you look at the word used in the verse is min dunnilllah, so this gets rid of there argument as this measn Allah is not inlcuding himself in the statment thus meaning that Quran does not say mary is part of the trinty. This explantion is excellent as it refutes them, but then im conffues as to the first verse i quoted,Sorry question is a bit complex and messy,

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.

The Hadeeth to which you referred in the question has been authentically attributed to the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. ‘Adiyy ibn Haatim  may  Allaah  be  pleased  with  him said: "I went to the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, with a cross of gold around my neck. He, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, said: 'O ‘Adiyy, Remove this idol from yourself!' And I heard him reciting the verse from Soorah Baraa’ah, {They have taken their scholars and monks as lords besides Allaah…}, and then he said: 'They did not worship them, but when they made something lawful for them, they considered it lawful, and when they made something unlawful for them, they considered it unlawful.'"[At-Tirmithi] Shaykhul-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah classified this Hadeeth as Hasan (a good chain of narration) in his book Al-Eemaan, and Al-Albaani also classified it as Hasan in his revision of At-Tirmithi's Sunan.

As for the coupling of ‘Eesa (Jesus) with the scholars and monks in the verse {They have taken their scholars and monks as lords besides Allaah, and [also] the Messiah, the son of Mary…}, it means that the Christians took the Messiah, the son of Mary, as a lord beside Allaah just as they had taken their monks as lords. Ash-Shawkaani commented on the verse saying: "In the verse, {the Messiah, the son of Mary} is coupled with their monks, meaning that the Christians took him as a worshipped lord." [Fat-h Al-Qadeer]

Al-Aloosi said in his Tafseer: "The Messiah, the son of Mary, was coupled with their monks (in the verse) indicating that they took him as lord or claimed that he was the son of Allaah." [End of quote]

They did not take him as lord by associating him with Allaah regarding obedience to what was revealed to him because obeying him in whatever Allaah revealed to him was obligatory. Allaah said (what means): {"And [I have come] confirming what was before me of the Torah and to make lawful for you some of what was forbidden to you. And I have come to you with a sign from your Lord, so fear Allaah and obey me"} [Quran 3:50]; rather, they took him as lord by claiming that he was the son of Allaah - far be it from Allaah; Exalted is He above what they say. In fact, this is more serious than mere obedience in what is lawful and what is unlawful, and it contradicts what ‘Eesa  may  Allaah  exalt  his  mention commanded them, namely to believe that Allaah alone is Lord and God. The Tafseer of Muqaatil ibn Sulaymaan (2/167) reads:

"{They have taken their monks as lords besides Allaah}, i.e. they obeyed them besides Allaah, and they have taken the Messiah, son of Mary as lord, when they were commanded by the Messiah himself to worship One God. ‘Eesa said to the Children of Israel: {Indeed, Allaah is my Lord and your Lord, so worship Him. This is a straight path."} [Quran 43:64] This was what ‘Eesa said to the Children of Israel … Then, Allaah The Exalted says (what means): {Exalted is He above whatever they associate with Him.} [Quran 9:31] Allaah The Almighty declared Himself to be far Exalted above such slander." [End of quote]

As for Allaah saying "other than Allaah" and saying "with Allaah" in other verses, there is effectively no difference between them. Anyone who worships something with Allaah or besides Allaah has associated something with Allaah and contravened the Quranic prohibition against Shirk (associating partners with Allaah) and against the worship of something other than Allaah. Likewise, Allaah says (what means):

·    {And [He revealed] that the Masjids are for Allaah, so do not invoke with Allaah anyone.} [Quran 72:18]

·    {And who is more astray than he who invokes besides Allaah those who will not respond to him until the Day of Resurrection, and they, of their invocation, are unaware. And when the people are gathered [that Day], they [who were invoked] will be enemies to them, and they will be deniers of their worship.} [Quran 46:5-6]

·    {And whoever invokes besides Allaah another deity for which he has no proof – then his account is only with his Lord. Indeed, the disbelievers will not succeed.} [Quran 23:117]

·    {That is Allaah, your Lord; to Him belongs sovereignty. And those whom you invoke other than Him do not possess [as much as] the membrane of a date seed. If you invoke them, they do not hear your supplication; and if they heard, they would not respond to you. And on the Day of Resurrection they will deny your association. And none can inform you like [one] Acquainted [with all matters].} [Quran 35:13-14]

·    {And do not make [as equal] with Allaah another deity. Indeed, I am to you from Him a clear warner.} [Quran 51:51]

As for the reason for using "besides" in the verse {…as lords besides Allaah...} although they had actually worshipped them with Allaah and associated them as partners with Him in worship, As-Suyooti  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him wrote: "Allaah The Exalted says (what means): {And those they call upon besides Him do not respond.} [Quran 13:14] They did not invoke them instead of Allaah; however, they invoked them concerning the part in which they associated them with Allaah in worship instead of Allaah." [Mu‘tarak Al-Aqraan fi I‘jaaz Al-Quran, 3/301]

Ibn ‘Aashoor  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him wrote: "The word besides, a circumstantial adverb, refers to the prevalent practice of the polytheists of engaging in the worship of idols and invoking them rather than worshipping Allaah and turning to Him in supplication insofar as it is like worshipping them besides (instead of) Allaah. The fact that they associated their idols with Allaah in worship on certain occasions and not all the time does not change the determination of their act. The verse highlights the corruption of their beliefs, as they ascribed partners, who are unworthy of worship, to Allaah although they held that Allaah was the King and Lord of those idols and that they worshipped them as mediators to draw nearer to Him. However, this is irrelevant because every act of worship they dedicated to their idols consisted in a violation of the right of Allaah to be worshipped alone with no partners." [End of quote]

As for the Christians and their taking Mary as a God, scholars held different opinions concerning this. Ibn Jareer and  Ibn Abi Haatim reported on the authority of As-Suddi pertaining to the verse (which means):  {They have certainly disbelieved who say, "Allaah is the third of Three"}  [Quran 5:73]: 'Christians claimed that ‘Eesa and his mother were gods. This is why Allaah says (what means): {And [beware the Day] when Allaah will say, "O Jesus, Son of Mary, did you say to the people, 'Take me and my mother as deities besides Allaah?'"} [Quran 5:116] 

Ibn Katheer  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him commented on the verse (which means): {They have certainly disbelieved who say, “Allaah is the third of three"} [Quran 5:73] saying: "The most valid opinion is that the verse was revealed in relation to the Christians. Mujaahid and several others said that this verse was revealed about the Christians in particular. Beyond this, they disagreed. Some maintained that it refers to the disbelievers among the Christians who hold the doctrine of the Trinity – defining God as three hypostases: the Father, the Son (Jesus Christ), and the Holy Spirit" or one god in three persons - Allaah be exalted above what they say. Ibn Jareer  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him and others commented on the verser saying: "The three sects, the Monarchite, Jacobite and Nestorite all believe in the Trinity, and they differ regarding it significantly but this is not the place to elaborate on that. Each sect accuses the other of disbelief; and in fact all three of them are disbelievers. As-Suddi and others said that the verse was revealed regarding those who associate the Messiah and his mother as deities with Allaah, thus saying that Allaah is the third of three. As-Suddi said: This is in relation to the verse (which means): {And [beware the Day] when Allaah will say, "O Jesus, Son of Mary, did you say to the people, 'Take me and my mother as deities besides Allaah?'"} [Quran 5:116] This is the most valid opinion." [End of quote]

Ibn Katheer  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him wrote: "The verse: {So believe in Allaah and His messengers. And do not say, "Three"; desist – it is better for you} [Quran 4:171]: it means: Do not associate ‘Eesa and his mother with Allaah; verily, He is deemed Exalted above such falsehood. Likewise, are the following verses:

·   {They have certainly disbelieved who say, "Allaah is the third of three." And there is no god except one God.} [Quran 5:73], as well as the following verses:

·  {And [beware the Day] when Allaah will say, "O Jesus, Son of Mary, did you say to the people, 'Take me and my mother as deities besides Allaah?'" He will say, "Exalted are You! It was not for me to say that to which I have no right. If I had said it, You would have known it. You know what is within myself, and I do not know what is within Yourself. Indeed, it is You who is Knower of the unseen.} [Quran 5:116] 

·  {They have certainly disbelieved who say, "Allaah is the Messiah, the son of Mary" while the Messiah has said, "O Children of Israel, worship Allaah, my Lord and your Lord." Indeed, he who associates others with Allaah – Allaah has forbidden him Paradise, and his refuge is the Fire. And there are not for the wrongdoers any helpers.} [Quran 5:72] 

The Christians, may Allaah curse them, due to their ignorance, they do not have a rule, and there is no limit to their deviance and misguidance. Some of them believe that ‘Eesa is God, some believe that he is a partner to God, and some believe that he is the son of God. Their beliefs are numerous and contradict each other, prompting a wise person to say that if ten Christians met, they would end up with eleven different beliefs!" [Tafseer Ibn Katheer]

Some Tafseer scholars held that the Christians did not actually worship Mary but this is entailed in the belief that she gave birth to a god. Ibn Al-Jawzi  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him said: "If it is claimed that the Christians did not worship Mary so why did Allaah describe them as taking Mary as a God, this claim is refutable since this is entailed by their belief that she did not give birth to a human being and that her son was a god, and, accordingly, this entails considering her as a goddess." [Zaad Al-Maseer, 2/464]

Al-Maawardi  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him  said in his Tafseer: "If it is argued that the Christians did not worship Mary then how come Allaah states so in the Quran? The answer to their claim is that their belief that she gave birth to a god and not a human being entails believing that she was of the same nature of her son, and thus that she was a goddess herself." [End of quote]

It should be noted that the Tafseer books advised that the Arabic word "doon" means "other than" as in Tafseer Al-Qurtubi and Abi Hayyaan; we could not find any Tafseer book suggesting that it means "besides".

Allaah Knows best.

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