Assalamualaikum Dato’ Mufti. Can you explain what is meant by al-Hakim which is the All-Wise mentioned in the Quran especially in Surah Luqman and Yasin. Hope for an explanation from Dato’ Mufti on this matter.
Alhamdulillah, praise and thanks to Allah for the countless blessings He has blessed us all with. Blessings and salutations to the Prophet Muhammad PBUH, his wives, his family, companions and all those that follow his teachings to the day of judgement.
There are several meanings meant by the phrase al-Hakim. Referring to the question, it is more specific on the attribute of Allah SWT al-Hakim which is the All-Wise and the attribute of al-Quran which contains many wisdoms.
So, we cite some definitions by the scholars of tafsir to understand more on the topic.
Imam Ibn Kathir states, (الْحَكِيمُ) in terms of actions and words, are putting something at its place according to the wisdom and rightfulness. (See Tafsir Ibnu Kathir, 1/445)
Imam Ibn Qayyim al-Jawzi stated that al-Hakim is one of the names of Allah SWT. Al-Hikmah is among the beautiful attributes of Allah SWT. Shari’ah rulings are taken and established with full al-Hikmah (wisdom). Rasulullah PBUH was sent to deliver al-Kitab and al-Hikmah (al-Quran). And al-Hikmah is one of Sunnah Rasulullah PBUH. Besides, there is an athar which states, “al-Hikmah is something that has disappeared from the believers”. (See Tariq al-Hijratain wa Bab al-Sa’adatain, 1/93)
Sheikh al-Sa’di states al-Hakim for Allah SWT means having the highest level of al-Hikmah (wisdom) in each of His creation that makes Him the best. By the attribute of al-Hakim, Allah SWT does not create something useless. He will not command something unbeneficial and that there are rulings from the beginning to its end. Al-Hakim is a perfect attribute of Allah SWT. He also puts something at its rightful place. (See Tafsir Asma’ Allah al-Husna, 1/186)
Al-Hakim in Surah Luqman and Surah Yasin, Verse no. 2
In Surah Luqman, there are three verses which contain the phrase (الْحَكِيمِ), while in Surah Yasin, there is one verse, in which all of these have their own meaning.
Pertaining this matter, the second verse of Surah Luqman and the second verse of Surah Yasin both carry the same meaning which is when Allah SWT explains the attribute of al-Quran al-Karim by saying that it contains wisdom and truth as well as having no defect in it. Allah says:
تِلْكَ آيَاتُ الْكِتَابِ الْحَكِيمِ
These are verses of the wise Book,
Surah Luqman (2)
Imam al-Qurtubi states that al-Hakim meant in the above verse is that there is no defect in it (the Quran). (See Tafsir al-Qurtubi, 14/50)
Dr Wahbah al-Zuhayli states (الْحَكِيمِ) means this is the verse of al-Quran which is attributed with al-Hikmah (ذي الحكمة) that comes from the One of whom the hikmah belongs to; Allah SWT Who is flawless, without any language defect and nothing contradicts Him. (See Tafsir al-Munir, 21/128)
The same for al-Hakim in Surah Yasin which also has the same meaning with the above verse. Allah SWT says:
By the wise Qur'an.
Surah Yasin (2)
Imam al-Qurtubi said al-Hakim means to the extent that there is no falsehood nor flaw. It is also stated that (أحكمت آياته) means its verses which are organized and stay firm (perfect). Also, the perfection of its arrangement, which means it is flawless. (See Tafsir al-Qurtubi, 15/5)
Hence, we conclude that al-Hakim in the above two verses means wisdom, truth and perfection of the verses of al-Quran that is flawless and perfectly arranged in terms of meaning and language as well as able to give explanation for the people as a whole as they are the sayings of Allah SWT.
Al-Hakim in Surah Luqman Verse 9 and 27
In Surah Luqman, there are other verses which explains the phrase (الْحَكِيمِ) and it indicates the attribute of Allah SWT the all-Wise. Allah SWT says:
خَالِدِينَ فِيهَا ۖ وَعْدَ اللَّـهِ حَقًّا ۚ وَهُوَ الْعَزِيزُ الْحَكِيمُ
Wherein they abide eternally; [it is] the promise of Allah [which is] truth. And He is the Exalted in Might, the Wise.
Surah Luqman (9)
Imam al-Qurtubi stated that al-Hakim is the attribute that stems from the actions of something towards something. Imam al-Qurtubi cited the opinion of Ibn al-Banjari which states, according to a nation, (الحكيم) is a prohibition from committing a transgression. (See Tafsir al-Qurtubi, 1/288)
Sheikh al-Maraghi states al-Hakim in this verse explains that Allah SWT as the All-Wise in governing His all of His creations where He will never do something unless each of it with hikmah (wisdom) and benefits for the creations as a whole. (See Tafsir al-Maraghi, 21/76)
The same for Allah SWT’s saying where He says:
وَلَوْ أَنَّمَا فِي الْأَرْضِ مِن شَجَرَةٍ أَقْلَامٌ وَالْبَحْرُ يَمُدُّهُ مِن بَعْدِهِ سَبْعَةُ أَبْحُرٍ مَّا نَفِدَتْ كَلِمَاتُ اللَّـهِ ۗ إِنَّ اللَّـهَ عَزِيزٌ حَكِيمٌ
And if whatever trees upon the earth were pens and the sea [was ink], replenished thereafter by seven [more] seas, the words of Allah would not be exhausted. Indeed, Allah is Exalted in Might and Wise.
Surah Luqman (27)
Sheikh al-Maraghi states: Indeed, Allah SWT with His glory and sovereignty over everything. None may prevent what He wants. And Allah SWT is al-Hakim (the All-Wise) upon His creations, commandments, sayings and actions (of giving reward and punishment). (See Tafsir al-Maraghi, 21/94)
Dr Wahbah al-Zuhaily states, al-Hakim is Allah SWT’s wisdom upon his creations. Each and everything may not escape His action and wisdom that encompasses all. And His knowledge has no end. (See al-Tafsir al-Munir, 21/170)
According to the question and opinions of the scholars of tafsir, we can conclude that the interpretation of al-Hakim diverse in meanings. Hence, in this article, it focuses on the phrase of al-hakim mentioned in Surah Luqman and Yasin. Verily, al-Hakim in the above verse means:
- In verse 2 of Surah Luqman and Yasin, Allah SWT’s saying (الْكِتَابِ الْحَكِيمِ) and (وَالْقُرْآنِ الْحَكِيمِ) means Allah SWT explains the attribute of al-Quran which is full of wisdom and truth as well as being perfect and flawless in terms of excluded from having any language defect, vagueness and etc.
- In verse 9 and 27, Allah SWT’s saying of (وَهُوَ الْعَزِيزُ الْحَكِيمُ) and (إِنَّ اللَّـهَ عَزِيزٌ حَكِيمٌ) means His attribute of All-Wise in creating and governing all of His creations.
May Allah SWT give us the correct understanding in His religion as well as taufiq and hidayah to practice His Shari’a properly.