How to Obtain Legislative Knowledge
In this very important lecture the Shaykh covers points that emphasise the great virtue and reward for seeking legislative knowledge. The shaykh discussed the noble and honourable position of those who carry and spread knowledge. He explains verses from the Qurʾān and narrations from the Sunnah to show the great status of legislative knowledge in the religion. Translated succinctly by our brother Abū ʿUways ʿAbdullāh Aḥmad ʿAlī (raḥimahullāh), may Allāh grant him a great reward.
Al-ʿAllāmah, Shaykh ʿʿUbayd al-Jābirī (hafiẓahullāh taʿāla) begins by praising Allāh and greeting the listeners to the lecture. He explains that the evidences from the religion show the importance of seeking legislative knowledge and that Allāh speaks about those who possess and carry this knowledge in a virtuous and noble way. Those who seek knowledge have a high status and position with Allāh in this world and in the hereafter.
The first position that shows the high status of knowledge is that all good is achieved through it. This good is comprehensive, it includes happiness in this life and in the hereafter and success in this life and success in the hereafter. All this is achieved by seeking knowledge.
The Prophet (ṣallallāhu ʿalayhi wa-sallam) specified this in the well known ḥadīth, on the authority of Mu’āwiyyah (raḍi Allāhu ʿʿʿanhu):
أَنَّ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَالَ : مَنْ يُرِدِ اللَّهُ بِهِ خَيْرًا يُفَقِّهْهُ فِي الدِّينِ
“Whoever Allāh wants good for He gives him understanding in the religion.”
Bukhārī and Muslim
The shaykh says: My sons and daughters we are going to reflect upon this narration, that goodness is attached to understanding in the religion. Achieving all good and success is in understanding the religion of Allāh. Some great scholars explained this narration in Bukhārī and Muslim by saying that the opposite of this matter is also true, that whoever Allāh does not want good for He does not grant him understanding in the religion. The people of legislative knowledge who have understanding in the religion are those whom Allāh wants all good for in this life and the hereafter.
They are those who know the truth from falsehood, the sunnah from bidʿah, they are those who know misguidance from the guidance. They are those who know belief from disbelief, they can distinguish between all these matters. They are always upon understanding and Allāh wants good for them.
The second lecture is a tremendous and detailed explanation of what legislative knowledge is. This knowledge is the understanding of the Book and the Sunnah based on the understanding of the righteous predecessors. It is the scholars who carry this knowledge.