Textual Evidence for Comprehensiveness of Islamic Sharia

Some authors expert in the exegesis of the Koran hold that everything needed by man for guidance is explained in the holy Koran. They site two verses of the Koran to prove their point:

“We did not overlook anything in the Book[23].”


“We have revealed to thee the book that explains everything as guidance, mercy and good news for Muslims[24].”

Interpreting these verses, Allameh Tabatabaeesays that as we see the Koran mentioning but very general outlines of what matters for prosperity of human individual and society refraining from detailed elaboration, we should infer either that the term “Book” in the verses refers to the “Protected Plate” (lawh mahfuz) rather than the Koran or that the term “explain” does not mean lingual expression[25]. However, there are several sayings of Imams emphasizing that Islamic Sharia includes the suitable social order which Islam renders right for societies. We quote two of them here.

1. Sayed Aaraj told His holiness Imam Sadiq (AS), “Some so-called jurisprudents confess that they rely on their own personal opinion in matters which no divine judgment is found about”. The Imam replied, “They lie; there is nothing about which no judgment is made either in the Koran or in tradition”.[26]

2. Abu Hamzah Thomali relates to His holiness Imam Baqir saying, “The holy messenger of God delivered a sermon on His last pilgrimage to Mecca where he said, ‘O people! I swear to God that I have explained for you and enjoin you to do everything that helps keep you away from the hell or lead you to the heaven. I have explained to you and forbid everything that leads you to the hell or keeps you away from the Paradise’[27].”

These sayings like many other traditions[28] state that Sharia judges about everything pertinent to human prosperity in life and eternal salvation in the hereafter economic behavior too included. So, Islam has its word with regard to all economic relations. The judgments of Sharia in the field of economics must be derived from the sources of Sharia such as the Koran and sayings of infallible Imams via ijtihad. Patterns of behavior in economic field acceptable to Islam must then be constructed on the basis of these judgments.

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