Has prophet Muhammad prohibited items
that are
not prohibited in the Quran?

Question:

The imams and ulama say that prophet Muhammad prohibited a number of items, and that he was given legislative powers to prohibit certain items, even though they are not prohibited in the Quran. These items include dogs, pictures, gold and silk for men and other items. They quote verses such as 9:29 to justify their claim.
Can you please address this verse and perhaps provide a clear verse saying that only Allah can make things forbidden.

Reply
:

As per your request, let us start by reading 9:29:

Fight the ones, from among those who were given the Scripture, who do not believe in God, nor in the Last Day, nor prohibit
what God and His messenger have prohibited, nor abide by the religion of truth, until the penalty is enforced on them and they are humbled.9:29

The underlined words do not mean that the messenger had his own set of prohibitions that are different from what God has prohibited. What these words tell us is that what God and His messenger prohibited is one and the same. The Quranic evidence for this meaning is extensive.
The following are some of the major verses that confirm the truth of this matter

FIRST
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 underlined words confirm that God is the only law maker. As a result, if any messenger prohibits (makes haram) something that God did not prohibit, the messenger would violate the law in 6:114.

SECOND
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

On one occasion, prophet Muhammad prohibited an item that God did not prohibit. Immediately, God reprimanded prophet Muhammad in the Quran. God could have reprimanded the prophet privately, but God deliberately placed this reprimand in the Quran for one important reason: so that all readers of the Quran would know that the prophet did not have the authority to prohibit anything that was not prohibited by God.

THIRD
The sole duty of the messenger is the delivery, and God knows what you reveal and what you conceal.5:99

The messengers of God are not sent as lawmakers, their only duty is to deliver the message of God.

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In the light of the above Quranic words, let us look at the words in 9:29 once again and specifically the following words:
nor prohibit what God and His messenger have prohibited

If the messenger of God had prohibitions that were different from what God has prohibited, we would expect the words to read:

nor prohibit what God has prohibited and what His messenger has prohibited

The separation of what the messenger has prohibited from what God has prohibited (in the hypothetical sentence above) would have indeed meant that the two sets of prohibitions may not be identical. However, the deliberate joining of (
God and His messenger) clearly indicates that what the messenger prohibited is nothing other than what God has prohibited.
The wording in 9:29 had to say "God and His messenger" for the simple reason that it was prophet Muhammad who informed his people of all the prohibitions, they did not receive the prohibitions directly from God.

In line with the above Quranic evidence, it can be concluded that all hadith that claim that prophet Muhammad prohibited items that are not prohibited by God, are clear fabrications and lies against the prophet of God. Such hadith are direct insults to the prophet's character as a faithful; obedient servant of God. Such hadith paint the prophet as a man who, despite the reprimand in 66:1, went on to play the role of a lawmaker besides God.

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You can find additional information about the authorities given by God to His messengers on this page:
What authorities are given to the messengers of God

After you go to this page, please scroll down to the title (
2- Deliverer of God's law but not lawmaker)