Justice in the Quran and Sunnah

In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful

Allah the Exalted said:

فَأَصْلِحُوا بَيْنَهُمَا بِالْعَدْلِ وَأَقْسِطُوا إِنَّ اللَّهَ يُحِبُّ الْمُقْسِطِينَ

So reconcile between them in justice and fairness. Verily, Allah loves those who are just.

Surah Al-Hujurat 49:9

And Allah said:

إِنَّ اللَّهَ يَأْمُرُ بِالْعَدْلِ وَالْإِحْسَانِ وَإِيتَاءِ ذِي الْقُرْبَىٰ وَيَنْهَىٰ عَنِ الْفَحْشَاءِ وَالْمُنكَرِ وَالْبَغْيِ يَعِظُكُمْ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَذَكَّرُونَ

Verily, Allah orders justice and good conduct and giving to relatives and He forbids immorality and bad conduct and oppression. He admonishes you that perhaps you will be reminded.

Surah An-Nahl 16:90

And Allah said:

إِنَّ اللَّهَ يَأْمُرُكُمْ أَن تُؤَدُّوا الْأَمَانَاتِ إِلَىٰ أَهْلِهَا وَإِذَا حَكَمْتُم بَيْنَ النَّاسِ أَن تَحْكُمُوا بِالْعَدْلِ إِنَّ اللَّهَ نِعِمَّا يَعِظُكُم بِهِ إِنَّ اللَّهَ كَانَ سَمِيعًا بَصِيرًا

Verily, Allah commands you to render trusts to whom they are due and when you judge between people to judge with justice. Excellent is that which Allah instructs you. Verily, Allah is ever Hearing and Seeing.

Surah An-Nisa 4:58

And Allah said:

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا كُونُوا قَوَّامِينَ بِالْقِسْطِ شُهَدَاءَ لِلَّهِ وَلَوْ عَلَىٰ أَنفُسِكُمْ أَوِ الْوَالِدَيْنِ وَالْأَقْرَبِينَ إِن يَكُنْ غَنِيًّا أَوْ فَقِيرًا فَاللَّهُ أَوْلَىٰ بِهِمَا فَلَا تَتَّبِعُوا الْهَوَىٰ أَن تَعْدِلُوا وَإِن تَلْوُوا أَوْ تُعْرِضُوا فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ كَانَ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ خَبِيرًا

O you who believe, be persistently standing firm in justice as witnesses for Allah, even if it be against yourselves or parents and relatives. Whether one is rich or poor, Allah is more worthy of both. So do not follow desires, lest you not be just. If you distort your testimony or refuse to give it, then verily, Allah is aware of what you do.

Surah An-Nisa 4:135

And Allah said:

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا كُونُوا قَوَّامِينَ لِلَّهِ شُهَدَاءَ بِالْقِسْطِ ۖ وَلَا يَجْرِمَنَّكُمْ شَنَآنُ قَوْمٍ عَلَىٰ أَلَّا تَعْدِلُوا اعْدِلُوا هُوَ أَقْرَبُ لِلتَّقْوَىٰ وَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ إِنَّ اللَّهَ خَبِيرٌ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ

O you who believe, be persistently standing firm for Allah as witnesses in justice, and do not let the hatred of a people prevent you from being just. Be just, for that is nearer to righteousness. Fear Allah, for verily, Allah is aware of what you do.

Surah Al-Ma’idah 5:8

Abdullah ibn Amr reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said:

الْمُقْسِطِينَ عِنْدَ اللَّهِ عَلَى مَنَابِرَ مِنْ نُورٍ عَنْ يَمِينِ الرَّحْمَنِ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ وَكِلْتَا يَدَيْهِ يَمِينٌ الَّذِينَ يَعْدِلُونَ فِي حُكْمِهِمْ وَأَهْلِيهِمْ وَمَا وَلُوا

Verily, those who were fair will be in the presence of Allah upon pulpits of light, near the right hand of the Merciful, the Exalted, and both of His sides are equally honorable. They are those who practiced justice in their rulings and with their families and in all that they did.

Source: Sahih Muslim 4493, Grade: Sahih

Abu Huraira reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said:

لَتُؤَدُّنَّ الْحُقُوقَ إِلَى أَهْلِهَا يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ حَتَّى يُقَادَ لِلشَّاةِ الْجَلْحَاءِ مِنْ الشَّاةِ الْقَرْنَاءِ

The rights of every people will be restored on the Day of Resurrection until even the hornless sheep will settle the score with the horned sheep.

Source: Sahih Muslim 2582, Grade: Sahih

Abu Dharr reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said:

عَنْ اللَّهِ تَبَارَكَ وَتَعَالَى أَنَّهُ قَالَ يَا عِبَادِي إِنِّي حَرَّمْتُ الظُّلْمَ عَلَى نَفْسِي وَجَعَلْتُهُ بَيْنَكُمْ مُحَرَّمًا فَلَا تَظَالَمُوا

Allah the Exalted said: O my servants, I have forbidden oppression for myself and have made it forbidden among you, so do not oppress one another.

Source: Sahih Muslim 2577, Grade: Sahih

Jabir ibn Abdullah reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said:

اتَّقُوا الظُّلْمَ فَإِنَّ الظُّلْمَ ظُلُمَاتٌ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ وَاتَّقُوا الشُّحَّ فَإِنَّ الشُّحَّ أَهْلَكَ مَنْ كَانَ قَبْلَكُمْ حَمَلَهُمْ عَلَى أَنْ سَفَكُوا دِمَاءَهُمْ وَاسْتَحَلُّوا مَحَارِمَهُمْ

Guard yourself from oppression, for oppression will be darkness on the Day of Resurrection. Guard yourself from greed, for greed destroyed those before you. It caused them to shed blood and to make lawful what was unlawful.

Source: Sahih Muslim 2578, Grade: Sahih

Anas ibn Malik reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said:

اتَّقُوا دَعْوَةَ الْمَظْلُومِ وَإِنْ كَانَ كَافِرًا فَإِنَّهُ لَيْسَ دُونَهَا حِجَابٌ

Beware of the supplication of the oppressed, even if he is an unbeliever, for there is no screen between it and Allah.

Source: Musnad Ahmad 12140, Grade: Sahih

Abu Sa’eed reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said:

إِنَّ أَحَبَّ النَّاسِ إِلَى اللَّهِ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ وَأَدْنَاهُمْ مِنْهُ مَجْلِسًا إِمَامٌ عَادِلٌ وَأَبْغَضَ النَّاسِ إِلَى اللَّهِ وَأَبْعَدَهُمْ مِنْهُ مَجْلِسًا إِمَامٌ جَائِرٌ

Verily, the most beloved of people to Allah on the Day of Resurrection and the nearest to Him will be the just leader. The most hated of people to Allah and the furthest from Him will be the tyrannical leader.

Source: Sunan At-Tirmidhi 1329, Grade: Hasan

Abdullah ibn Mas’ud reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said:

وَاللَّهِ لَتَأْمُرُنَّ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ وَلَتَنْهَوُنَّ عَنْ الْمُنْكَرِ وَلَتَأْخُذُنَّ عَلَى يَدَيْ الظَّالِمِ وَلَتَأْطُرُنَّهُ عَلَى الْحَقِّ أَطْرًا وَلَتَقْصُرُنَّهُ عَلَى الْحَقِّ قَصْرًا

By Allah, you must enjoin good and forbid evil and seize the hand of the oppressor and make him follow the truth and restrict him to what is just.

Source: Sunan Abu Dawud 4336, Grade: Hasan

Wathilah ibn al-Asqa reported: I asked, “O Messenger of Allah, what is tribalism?” The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said:

أَنْ تُعِينَ قَوْمَكَ عَلَى الظُّلْمِ

It is that you help your people in wrongdoing.

Source: Sunan Abu Dawud 5100, Grade: Hasan

An-Nu’man ibn Basheer reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said:

اعْدِلُوا بَيْنَ أَوْلَادِكُمْ اعْدِلُوا بَيْنَ أَبْنَائِكُمْ

Be just with your children. Be just with your children.

Source: Sunan Abu Dawud 3544, Grade: Hasan

Anas ibn Malik reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said:

إِذَا حَكَمْتُمْ فَاعْدِلُوا وَإِذَا قَتَلْتُمْ فَأَحْسِنُوا فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ مُحْسِنٌ يُحِبُّ الإِحْسَانَ

If you make a judgment, then be just. If you have to kill, then kill in the best manner. Verily, Allah the Exalted is excellent and He loves excellence.

Source: Mu’jam Al-Awsat 5884, Grade: Hasan

Muharib ibn Dithar reported: Ibn Umar, may Allah be pleased with him, said:

إِنَّمَا سَمَّاهُمُ اللَّهُ أَبْرَارًا لأَنَّهُمْ بَرُّوا الآبَاءَ وَالأَبْنَاءَ كَمَا أَنَّ لِوَالِدِكَ عَلَيْكَ حَقًّا كَذَلِكَ لِوَلَدِكَ عَلَيْكَ حَقٌّ

Verily, Allah only named them as righteous because they were dutiful to their parents and children. Just as your father has a right upon you, so do your children have a right upon you.

Source: Al-Adab Al-Mufrad 94, Grade: Hasan 

Ibn Taymiyyah said:

الصالح  القائم بحقوق الله وحقوق عباده

The righteous person is one who fulfills the rights of Allah and the rights of His servants.

Source: Kitab Al-Iman

Ibn Al-Qayyim said:

قَدْ بَيَّنَ سُبْحَانَهُ بِمَا شَرَعَهُ مِنْ الطُّرُقِ أَنَّ مَقْصُودَهُ إقَامَةُ الْعَدْلِ بَيْنَ عِبَادِهِ وَقِيَامُ النَّاسِ بِالْقِسْطِ فَأَيُّ طَرِيقٍ اُسْتُخْرِجَ بِهَا الْعَدْلُ وَالْقِسْطُ فَهِيَ مِنْ الدِّينِ وَلَيْسَتْ مُخَالِفَةً لَهُ

Allah the Exalted has made clear in his law (sharia) that the objective is the establishment of justice between His servants and fairness among the people, so whichever path leads to justice and fairness is part of the religion and can never oppose it.

Source: Turuq Al-Hukmiyyah 13

Success comes from Allah, and Allah knows best.