What is meant by the belief in Divine Books
Fatwa No: 52579

Question

Allah, The Almighty Has Enjoined on us to believe in all the Divine Books. However, the books that exist now are distorted. So, how can we believe in them? Why were the other previous Divine Books not preserved from distortion even though they were sent down by Allah The Almighty?

Answer

All perfect praise be to Allah, The Lord of the Worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allah, and that Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) is His slave and Messenger.

Belief in the Divine Books is to have a firm belief that Allah, The Almighty, Sent down books to His Prophets and Messengers such as the Torah, the Gospel, the Psalms, the Scripture of Ibraaheem (Abraham), and there may be other books that we do not know. In fact, the Noble Quran has abrogated all of these books. Allah, The Almighty, says (what means): {And We Have Revealed to you, [O Muhammad], the Book in truth, confirming that which preceded it of the Scripture and as a criterion over it.} [Quran 5:48]

Thus, it is impermissible to act according to any ruling mentioned in the other previous Divine Books except what the Noble Quran approves. Rather, the scholars of the Hanbali School of Fiqh stated that it is not permissible to look at the books of the People of the Book for the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) was annoyed when he saw a paper of the Torah with ‘Umar ibn Al-Khattaab  may  Allaah  be  pleased  with  him. Furthermore, the scholars of the Shaafi‘i School of Fiqh said that it is not permissible to hire someone to teach you the Torah and the Gospel and considered such a thing forbidden. Also, it is not permissible to deny any of these books as long as it was proved that Allah, The Almighty, Revealed it. In this regard, Shaykh-ul-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him said, “If anyone believes in all the books and denies only one of them, he will become a non-Muslim."

The reason behind not preserving them is that Allah, The Almighty, Did not Pledge that He Will Preserve them by Himself for it is not an everlasting message. However, He Entrusted preserving them to the humans who distorted and altered them. Allah, The Almighty, says (what means): {Indeed, We Sent down the Torah, in which was guidance and light. The prophets who submitted [to Allah ] judged by it for the Jews, as did the rabbis and scholars by that with which they were entrusted of the Scripture of Allah, and they were witnesses thereto.} [Quran 5:44]

This is unlike the Noble Quran that Allah, The Almighty, Has Pledged to Preserve because it is the everlasting Message of Allah The Almighty to human beings. Allah, The Almighty, says (what means): {Indeed, it is We Who Sent down the Quran and indeed, We Will Be its guardian.}[Quran 15:9]

Allah Knows best.

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