Allah bears witness that none has the right to be worshiped but He, and the angels, and those having knowledge (also give this witness); (He is always) maintaining His creation in Justice. (Quran 3:18)
It is deduced from this verse that the real knowledgeable man is the one who bears witness of Allah’s Justice, but the one who transmits some of what he has read is considered a transmitter, not a knowledgeable man.
If this man narrates to someone what he has found in some books without thinking deeply about these pieces of information, he may make the listener have contradictory ideas about some religious issues.
As a result, the listener may believe that Allah’s Justice is different from ours, but he may start thinking that man in fact does not have the free will, and all his actions and deeds are imposed upon him.
These words are not the words of the knowledgeable, but the ones of the transmitter. He transmits both the facts and false ideas he has read, so he will be punished for transmitting falsehood.
The most precious deed in man’s life is to acquire the Islamic knowledge from a knowledgeable man:
This knowledge contains the rules of the religion, so look thoroughly into the person from whom you acquire the knowledge of your religion. (Muslim)
In another Hadith, the Prophet said:
O Ibn Umar, your religion, your religion is your flesh and blood. Take it from the pious ones, and do not take it from those who deviated. (Kanz Al-Ummal, by Ibn Umar)
Take Knowledge From the Knowledgeable
If someone tells a man about false religious ideas, that might help him commit sins, cover or justifies sins, this is absolutely falsehood.
Some people justify gazing at forbidden things referring mistakenly to what our Prophet Yusuf (peace be upon him) did (when the woman of Al-Aziz wanted to commit adultery with him).
The outcomes of acquiring the sound Islamic knowledge are chivalry, chastity, honesty, trustworthiness and so on.
If the Muslim is entrusted with all the money of this worldly life, he will take his portion only. Hence, the believer is trustworthy, honest and chaste. If he is entrusted with something, he will never betray the trust.
Moreover, the believer gets married to a religious woman in order to have righteous children. Also, he invites his neighbor, his son in law, his nephew, his brother, his friend, etc. to the Masjid in order to get them closer to Allah and be steadfast. Allah the Almighty says:
See you not how Allah sets forth a parable? – A goodly word as a goodly tree, whose root is firmly fixed, and its branches (reach) to the sky (i.e. very high)* Giving its fruit at all times. (14: 24-25)
Below is another similitude. Allah the Almighty says:
And these similitudes We put forward for mankind, but none will understand them except those who have knowledge (of Allah and His Signs, etc.). (29:43)
The Noble Quran is Allah’s Book. Allah, the Glorified and Exalted, says:
Nay, but they, the clear Ayat [i.e the description and the qualities of Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, written like verses in the Torah and the Gospel] are preserved in the breasts of those who have been given knowledge (from the people of the Scriptures). (29: 49)
This means that the verses of the Noble Quran are not merely words that have been written in these papers:
Whoever does not acquire the Islamic knowledge from the people of knowledge will never get the truth. Let alone, whoever does not know the Sunnah will be ignorant of what the scholars discuss. The Prophet said:
Wisdom increases the honor of the noble. (Al-Jame’ As-Sagheer)
If someone is from a noble linage, he will be more exalted after acquiring knowledge, and if he is honorable, knowledge will increase his honor.
A Caliph said:
“If you are noble men, knowledge will make you more elevated, if you are from middle class people, knowledge will make you noble people and if you are from lower class people, you will know how to live by knowledge.”
Someone may be highly educated, but if he is not steadfast on Allah’s Order, he is not knowledgeable, and the knowledge he has is mere ignorance.
On the other hand, you may know someone who is not highly educated, but he acts upon Allah’s Order, he fears Allah, Glorified and Sublime be He, he makes use of whatever sound Islamic fact he receives, he has exalted knowledge even though it may be little.
The knowledgeable man never says something from his own mind, but rather he refers to Allah’s words and the Hadith of the Prophet.
The Excellence of Learning
The Prophet was once asked:
‘O Prophet of Allah, which action is best?
He (peace be upon him) said:
He was then asked:
‘Which knowledge do you mean?’
‘Knowledge about Allah.’
‘We ask you about action but you speak of knowledge’.
The Prophet said:
With your knowledge of Allah, a few actions will suffice and your ignorance about Allah will not suffice even though actions are numerous. (Al-Jami’ As-Sagheer)
Abu Al-Aswad said:
“There is nothing greater than knowledge. Kings are rulers of people, but scholars are the rulers of the kings.”
Is there any king who has no consultants? If a king wants to allow people to do something, or he wants to deprive them of doing something that is related to economy and finance, he consults the experts of economy.
Furthermore, presidents all over the world have prominent consultants, which indicates that knowledge is essential in man’s life. When the president has a social or an economic problem, he meets with the consultants and asks them to find the solution. This means that the backbone of having a healthy and strong society is knowledge.
Prophet Solomon was given the choice to choose between the kingdom, wealth or knowledge:
And Sulaiman (Solomon) inherited (the knowledge of) Dawud (David). (27: 16)
Prophet Sulaiman favored knowledge over the money and the kingdom, so he was granted money and the kingdom besides knowledge.
Ibn Al-Mubarak was once asked:
“Who are the best people?”
He answered, “The learned.”
It was then said to him:
“And who are the kings?”
“The ascetics.” He answered.
He was asked: “Who are the dishonorable people then?”
“Those who take earthly benefit at the expense of their religion.”
Abridged from http://www.muhammad-pbuh.com
(From Discovering Islam archive)