“Praise be to Allah who revealed to His servant the Book and placed therein no crookedness. He has made it straight in order that He may warn of a terrible punishment from him and that He may give glad tidings to the believers who work righteous deeds that they shall have a great reward wherein they shall abide forever. Further, that He may warn those who claim that Allah has begotten a son.”
(Sûrah al-Kahf: 1-4)
May Allah’s peace and blessings be upon His Messenger who said:
“I was given the Qur’ân and something else like it. I fear lest a man will sit contentedly reclining and say: ‘You must follow this Qur’ân. Whatever you find therein permissible, permit it, and whatever you find therein prohibited, forbid it.’ Nay, for indeed whatever Allah’s Messenger has prohibited, it is as if Allah has prohibited it.”(1)
It is one of Allah’s blessings upon humanity that He has preserved among them His revealed words without allowing any corruption to alter them. This may indeed be Allah’s greatest blessing upon humanity as a whole, since His Book provides them with a way to properly govern their lives and resolve their disputes. The Qur’ân came to humanity after all the previous revealed scriptures had either been lost or, like the Torah and the Gospel, corrupted. Allah speaks about how people had corrupted the scriptures, saying:
“Woe to those who write the Book with their own hands and then say: ‘This is from Allah’ to gain from it a paltry price. So woe to them for what their hands have written and woe to them for what they gain from it.”
(Sûrah al-Baqarah: 79)
If the Qur’ân is Allah’s greatest blessing upon humanity, it follows that knowledge of the commentary and interpretation of the Qur’ân is the greatest of all knowledge, since it is the knowledge that gives humanity a correct understanding of what Allah is saying to them. This is why scholars throughout history have given this field of study so much attention and have written so extensively about it. The commentary of the Qur’ân began at the time of Prophet Muhammad (SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam). Indeed, the Prophet (SallAllahu Alayhi Wa Sallam) is the primary source for explaining Allah’s Book. He explained the meanings of the Qur’ân’s verses by his words and by his deeds.
(1) Musnad Ahmad (17174), Sunan al-Dârimî (606), Sunan Abî Dâwûd (4594), Sunan al-Tirmidhî (2664), and Sunan Ibn Mâjah (12).