Why Muslims should follow the Quran,
all the Quran, and nothing but the Quran

Researched by: A. Muhammad

1- The command to follow the Quran alone and reject all hadith:

The Quran contains clear instructions to all Muslims to follow the Quran Alone and reject all hadith. The Arabic word h
adith means all sayings, narrations, talk, stories, etc. In a narrower sense, the word 'hadith' refers to the sayings attributed to Prophet Muhammad. The hadith is regarded by the majority of traditional Muslim scholars to be the second source of law after the Quran, despite the clear commands given in the Quran to follow the Quran alone and reject all hadith. The following Quranic verses make this issue clear:

These are God's revelations (Quran) that We recite to you with truth, so in which hadith other than God and His revelations (Quran) do they believe? 45:6

Which hadith after it (Quran) do they believe in? 7:185

Both verses above contain the same clear commandment; not to follow any source of religious guidance and law other than the Quran.
We also read:

A Book has been brought down to you, so let there be no constraint in your chest because of it, and so that you may warn with it. It is a Reminder for the believers.
Follow what has been brought down to you from your Lord and do not follow any allies besides Him. Rarely do you remember! 7:2-3

The words in 7:2-3 contain clear instructions to follow the Quran and nothing else.

Or do you have some book in which you are studying?
68:37

In 68:37 God is mocking those who have other books than the Quran which they follow.

So in which hadith after it (Quran) do they believe?
77:50

In 77:50 we see yet another clear mockery aimed at all who follow other than the Quran.

And this is a blessed Book which We brought down, so follow it and be reverent so that you may attain mercy.
6:155

Once again we see the command to follow the Quran. No other source is mentioned.

2- The Quran has all the details:

Shall I seek other than God as a lawmaker when it is He who has brought down to you the Book fully detailed? 6:114

6:114 contains clear confirmation that:

- God is the only lawmaker.

- The Quran has all the details.

Further confirmation that the Quran has all the details we need is given in the following verses:

This (Quran) is not a fabricated hadith, but an authentication of what came before it, a detailed account of all things, and guidance and mercy for people who believe. 12:111

We did not leave anything out of the Book. 6:38

We brought the Book down to you providing explanations of all things. 16:89

3- The command to follow the messenger:

Muslims today have been led to believe that in order to follow the Prophet they must follow his sunna. The word 'sunna' which is used in the Quran, means the way of doing things or methodology. The Quran speaks of only one sunna, which has no substitute, that being the Sunna of God. Nowhere in the Quran is there any mention of a sunna for Prophet Muhammad!

Such was the Sunna of God for those who passed on before. You will find that there is no substitute for the Sunna of God. 33:62

Indeed the Quran contains the command to follow the Prophet. To do so, the believers must follow what the Prophet followed. The Quran tells us that Prophet Muhammad was commanded to follow nothing other than the Quran that was revealed to him. Thus, following the Prophet means following the Quran and nothing else:

Say (O Muhammad), "I am not a novelty among the messengers, nor do I know what will happen to me or to you. I follow nothing other than what is revealed to me. I am no more than a clear warner." 46:9 (also in 10:15).

And We brought down to you (O Muhammad) the Book (Quran) with truth, confirming what came before it of the Scripture and superseding it. So rule among them in accordance with what God has brought down and do not follow their desires in place of what has come to you of the truth. 5:48

The Quran makes the issue clear that following the messenger means following what was revealed to him. The true believers follow what was revealed to the messenger:


So those who have believed in him (Muhammad), honoured him, supported him and followed the Light (Quran) which was brought down with him; they are the successful ones." 7:157

In 7:157 it is made clear that following the Prophet means following the light which was revealed to him from God and that is the Quran.

4- The duty given to the messenger:

The Quran confirms that the only duty of prophet Muhammad (or of any messenger) is to deliver God's message. Messengers are not sent to advocate their own personal teachings. They are called messengers of God because they deliver a message from God.

The sole duty of the messenger is the delivery (of God's message). 5:99

The same message is found in 5:92, 16:35, 16:82, 24:54, 29:18, 42:48 and 64:12.

The words in 5:99 and the similar verses are a confirmation to all believers that the sole duty of any messenger is to deliver God's message, in the case of prophet Muhammad, the message he delivered from God is the Quran.
In addition to this confirmation
addressed to all believers and readers of the Quran, we also find God stressing the same fact to prophet Muhammad himself:

But if they turn away, We did not send you as a guardian over them. Your sole duty (O Muhammad) is the delivery.
42:48

Following from 6:114, which confirms that God is the only lawmaker, and 5:99 which confirms that the only duty of the messenger is to deliver God's message, we read in Sura 66 about the incident when God reprimanded prophet Muhammad for making the error of prohibiting something made lawful by God, or in other words: when he played the role of the lawmaker:

O you prophet, why do you prohibit what God has made lawful for you, seeking to please your wives? God is Forgiver, Merciful. 66:1

5- Following any religious rules, laws or rituals not authorised by God is an act of shirk:

Or do they have 'shuraka' (partners) who legislate for them of the religion what God did not authorise? If it were not for a decisive Word, judgement would have already been passed over them. Indeed, the transgressors shall have a painful punishment.
42:21

The third Arabic word in 42:21 is
'shuraka', it means partners. This word should not be overlooked. God could have said: 'do they have others who legislate for them', but God deliberately chose the word 'shuraka'. The word 'shuraka' is an adjective from the noun 'shirk' (setting up partners with God in any of His exclusive rights). One of God's exclusive rights is that He is the only Law Maker (6:114). Since the words in 42:21 connect the word 'shuraka' with the words 'legislate for them of the religion', the word 'shuraka' in this verse can only be speaking about those who are set up as religious lawmakers, and thus they are set up as partners with God in his right to be the only Law Maker. It follows that all who advocate or follow religious rules or rituals not authorised by God are committing shirk. On the Day of Judgement, those who committed shirk will be asked: 'where are your shuraka?' (6:22).

The Quranic words in 42:21 (above) are in perfect harmony with the Quranic assurance that God is the only lawmaker when it comes to religious laws:

Shall I seek other than God as a 'hakaman' lawmaker when it is He who has brought down to you the Book fully detailed?
6:114

The word
'hakaman' is one of the derivatives of the word 'hukm' (law, singular) and 'ahkam' (laws, plural). In other words, God has issued a warning in 6:114 against taking any source of law other than God (Quran).

Further confirmation of the fact that following any religious source other than the Quran is an act of shirk is given in the following words:

Follow what has been revealed to you from your Lord (Quran), there is no god except Him, and keep away from the mushrikeen.
6:106

The fact that the command to follow the Quran and to stay away from those who commit shirk are linked as one command quite clearly delivers the same clear message.

6- The command to obey God and obey the messenger:

God commands the believers to obey God and obey the messenger, but God also makes sure that the obedience to the messenger is linked to obeying the message he delivered and nothing else. Obeying the messenger does not mean that the messenger issued additional teachings outside of the Quran.

The confirmation that obeying the messenger is linked to obeying the message he delivered (the Quran) is given in the following verse:

Obey God and obey the messenger. If you turn away then the sole duty of the messenger is the clear delivery (of God's message). 64:12

The obedience to the messenger and the deliverance of the Quran are linked in the same verse.

Why does the Quran say 'obey the Messenger'?

It is necessary to inquire why did God not just say
"obey God"? Why did God add the words "obey the messenger"?

A-
The first and most obvious reason why the instruction "obey the messenger" was absolutely necessary is that God commanded the messenger (Muhammad) to say specific words to the people. It was thus necessary for God to also tell the people to "obey the messenger" when he tells them the words which God instructed him to say to them.
There is a total of 332 verses in the Quran in which God commands Muhammad to "say" specific words to the people such as:

And they ask you (O Muhammad) about the orphans, say, "Improving their affairs is best." If you mix your affairs with theirs, they are your brothers. God knows the corruptor from the reformer. Had God willed, He could have made things difficult for you. God is Dignified, Wise. 2:220

B- Who among the companions of prophet Muhammad ever heard any of God's revelations directly from God? No one! Consequently, they cannot obey God except through what came out of Muhammad's mouth.

Is it obey "Muhammad" or "obey the messenger"
?

We never read anywhere in the Quran words such as "Obey God and obey Muhammad" or obey Jesus or Moses. The words used are always
"obey the messenger". This is to emphasise that it is the "message" of God that is to be obeyed and not the personal words or views of the messenger.

For more details on the meaning of "obey the messenger" please go to: Obey God and obey the messenger

7- Does the sunna of the Prophet complete the Quran:

It is claimed by many Islamic scholars that the Quran on its own is not sufficient and that the hadith and sunna of the prophet completes the religion for us and provides us with what is not in the Quran.
Many of us go on repeating this claim without knowing what does God has to say about it. Thinking that they are well guided, some say that they do not follow except what has been proven to be the authentic sunna of the prophet.

This is what God has to say about the claim that the Quran is incomplete and is completed by the sunna:

Today, I have completed your religion for you, perfected My blessing upon you and approved Islam (submission) as the religion for you.
5:3

This glorious Quranic verse was revealed near the end of the Quranic revelation and confirms that the religion of God is completed in the Quran.
And in another verse, God assures us that:

The Word of your Lord has been completed
, in truth and justice. None can change His Words. He is the Hearer, the Knowledgeable. 6:115

8- Did God authorise the messenger to teach teachings other than the Quran:

The Quran also confirms that prophet Muhammad was commanded not to teach any other teachings; otherwise, he would incur severe punishment from God:

It is a revelation from the Lord of the worlds. Had he falsely attributed any sayings to Us, We would have grabbed him by the right, and We would have severed his aorta. None of you would be able to prevent it. And indeed, it is a reminder for the reverent. 69:43-48

9- What was prophet Muhammad commanded to testify to receiving from God:

In one of the very significant verses in the Quran, we read about a testimony which God commanded prophet Muhammad to utter:

Say, "What thing is the greatest testimony?" Say, "God is Witness between me and you, and this Quran has been revealed to me to warn you with it and whomever it reaches. Do you bear witness that there are other gods besides God?" Say, "I do not bear witness." Say, "He is but One God and I am innocent of the shirk that you commit." 6:19

The words above tell us that prophet Muhammad was made to testify to receiving the Quran from God. In this testimony, which God calls
"the greatest testimony", we find no mention of other than the Quran.

The reader of the Quran is entitled to ask: If the hadith of the Prophet was a revelation received from God, as the hadith advocates claim, why was this revelation not included in the testimony above?
In addition, if the hadith of the prophet was inspired to him by God, then how do we explain the multiple times in which God reprimanded the prophet in the Quran for some errors he made? Was God inspiring errors to the prophet then reprimanding him for them?

Besides the verdict of 6:19 in which prophet Muhammad was commanded to testify to receiving the Quran from God (no mention of any other revelation mentioned), we have 2 more pieces of evidence that confirm the same truth:

We brought down to you the Book (Quran) with truth, confirming what came before it of the Scripture and superseding it. So rule among them in accordance with what God has brought down and do not follow their desires in place of what has come to you of the truth.5:48

The words in
5:48 include a command from God to prophet Muhammad to rule in accordance to what God brought down to him. The only thing mentioned to have been brought down to the prophet is again the Quran.

A Book (Quran) has been brought down to you (O Muhammad), so let there be no constraint in your chest because of it, and so that you may warn with it. It is a Reminder for the believers.
Follow what has been brought down to you from your Lord and do not follow any allies besides Him. Rarely do you remember! 7:2-3

Once again, the prophet was commanded to follow what was brought down to him, and as per the words in 7:2, God mentions only the Quran for what was brought down.
Throughout the Quran, we cannot see any evidence of any revelation Muhammad received other than the Quran.

10- Instructions left by prophet Muhammad to his people:

Prophet Muhammad himself commanded his people not to write his hadith, this is documented in the collection of 'Muslim' and other books:

"Do not write down anything from me except the Quran. Whoever writes other than that should delete it" (Ahmed Ibn Hanbal, Vol. 1, page 171 also Sahih Muslim, Book 42, Number 7147)

It is a fact that the large majority of Muslims do not know that the prophet prohibited the writing of his hadith, nor that the hadith present today, which are called 'sahih' (authentic), was written more than 200 years after Hijra!

For more details please go to: History of hadith

For the first 150 years to 200 years after the death of the prophet, and in accordance with his commands, the writing of his hadith was forbidden. Out of the 6 hadith collections we have today, which are regarded as 'sahih' (authentic), the first to be written was the collection of Al-Bukhari. Al-Bukhari was born in the year 194 After Hijrah. What this means is that the first of what are regarded as authentic hadith (sahih) to be compiled, was written more than two whole centuries after the death of the Prophet!

Even if we were to follow the hadith (something which is clearly prohibited in the Quran), we would still be faced with the question of how accurate can a collection of sayings documented two centuries after the death of the Prophet be?

Please see: Chinese Whispers

11- What we will be held accountable to:

On Judgement Day, the people will stand before Almighty God and be judged. The Quran sets the accountability of every people to the Book which God revealed to them. when the guidelines are applied to us, the Quranic words below inform us that we will be accountable to the Quran and nothing else:

You will see every nation
kneeling. Every nation will be called to its Book. "Today you are repaid for what you used to do. 45:28

For each of you, We have decreed a law and a method. Had God willed, He would have made you one na
tion, but He tests you through what He has given each of you. 5:48

We know best what they say, and you are not a tyrant over
them. So remind with the Quran those who fear My warning. 50:45

It (Quran) is a Reminder for you and your people and you will all be questioned. 43:44

12- The issue of infallibility:

God commanded the prophet in the Quran to say that he is infallible in the revelation he delivered, but that he may commit errors in his personal words and hadith:

Say, "If I stray, I stray to my own loss, and if I am guided, it is by what my Lord inspires to me. He is Hearer, Near. 34:50

In spite of the above confirmation of the fallibility of prophet Muhammad, together with six incidents in the Quran where the prophet was reprimanded by God for errors he made, it is claimed by traditional Muslim scholars that prophet Muhammad was infallible! The six incidents are found in 8:67-68, 9:43, 9:113-114, 33:37, 66:1 and 80:1-11.

13- Why does God allow hadith to exist and be documented:

The Quran confirms that for every prophet there will be enemies of human and jinn devils who will fabricate fancy sayings (hadith) and attribute them to the prophet to deceive the people:

And thus We have made enemies for every prophet, human and jinn devils, inspiring to one another fancy sayings in deception. 6:112

We then read in verse 113 that God allows such hadith to be written and circulated so as to set a test for the people and that it is the disbelievers and hypocrites who will accept it and thus commit what they will commit:

This is to let the hearts of those who do not believe in the Hereafter listen to it, accept it, and thus commit what they are committing. 6:113

14- The Quran is all we need:

Finally, the Quran contains everything the genuine believer needs for the following reasons:

a- The Quran is complete and does not need additional sources:

The word of your Lord has been completed, in truth and justice. 6:115

b- The Quran is not in need of an explanatory supplement since it is clear, easy to understand and is not ambiguous:

A.L.R. These are the signs of the clear Book. 12:1

We have made it easy to understand, in your own tongue, so that they may be reminded. 44:58

c- The Quran is not in need of a correction manual since it is perfect and harbours no contradictions:

A.L.R. A Book whose verses have been perfected. 11:1

d- The Quran is not in need of a 'details' supplement since it is fully detailed:

Shall I seek other than God as a lawmaker when it is He who has brought down to you the Book fully detailed? 6:114

For all the above reasons, all Muslims should follow the Quran,
the whole Quran and nothing but the Quran.

Praise God