Introduction to Qur’an and Hadith and there significance
The Qur’an is that divine scripture which consists of the words of God. The Qur’an was revealed over 1400 years ago indirectly from god through the arch angel Gabriel to a man who lived in the deserts of Arabia known to the people by the name Muhammad.1 It was revealed over a time span of 23 years. Hadith is that which came from the Prophet and from this source many Islamic rulings are based and derived from Hadith. Even though the Qur’an and Hadith are two different sources from which Islamic verdicts are derived but in reality they both correspond with each other and can be classified in the same category only to a certain degree.
When one scrutinises the Qur’an scrupulously he will come to the realisation that the Qur’an is no word of man as more than 1400 years have passed, yet a single vowel has not been altered which shows the uniqueness of the Qur’an and this is one of the greatest miracles ever known to humankind. Approximately 1400 years ago Allah challenged humanity in the Qur’an as he said, “And if you are in some doubt, concerning what we have sent down upon our special devotee, then bring one chapter like it, and call upon all your helpers besides Allah if you are truthful.”2 Allah challenges those who disbelief to only bring a chapter like the Qur’an and then the verse gives people certainty that the Qur’an is the divine speech of God and no one will ever bring a chapter forth like it. “Then if you cannot bring and we declare that you can never bring, hence dread the fire whose fuel is men and stones; it is prepared for the disbelievers.”3
The style of the Qur’an is such that it is allocated into thirty parts known as ‘Juz’, 114 chapters and 6666 verses. The Qur’an comprises of legal rulings as well as narratives from previous nations which serve as examples and guidance for the Muslims. For example, the word ‘Qul’ is mentioned over 200 times in the Qur’an and in these passages which begin with ‘Qul’, Allah is instructing the Prophet to inform the Muslims regarding legal rulings such as fasting, praying etc. It encompasses aspects of beliefs such as not associating any partners with Allah and also provides answers to specific questions which are mentioned. The style of the Qur’an’s structure is that some verses are bound by certain conditions and some verses are not. In general the topics of the Qur’an are all mixed up in different chapters. The reason for the Qur’an not being in a chronological order is that if it was chronologically ordered then
it would be more like a history book, biography or an instruction manual which then would make the Qur’an seem more like any other ordinary book.
Furthermore, the Arabs were masters in the Arabic language and in poetry but the Qur’an was revealed well above there comprehension and understanding of the Arabic language. If the Qur’an was revealed in any other language then the Arabs would have sought to use this is as an excuse in regards to not following the Qur’an as the Qur’an informs us, “Has we sent this is as a Qur’an (in a language) other than Arabic they could have said: Why are not its verses explained in detail? What a book not in Arabic and (a messenger) an Arab? Say: It is a guide and a healing to those who believe…”4 The Qur’an has been protected and preserved due to its unique style. The reason why the Qur’an has not been altered in any way is because the transmission of the Qur’an from generation to generation has been remarkably thorough. And the reason why the transmission of the Qur’an has been thorough is because people memorise the Qur’an and recite it to one another constantly which erases the possibility of errors and alterations in the Qur’an. All the of the above is successfully carried out because of the pure and unique style of the Qur’an which can be likened to poetry and prose but in reality it is none of the two which makes the Qur’an stand out from any other book or