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Al-Tahwiyyah: Pt 4 The Power of Allah

ولا يعجزُه شىءَ

Nothing can render Him incapable.

The author now begins to elaborate upon the Oneness of Allāh (tawhīd) in terms of His Lordship. He is the Creator and Sustainer of whatsoever is in the heavens and the earth. He has complete and perfect control and power over them. For this reason, there is nothing that could possibly exhaust His Might or lay beyond His Power.

In the greatest verse of the Qur’ān, Allāh speaks of His Might and says: ‘His Kursi extends over the heavens and the earth, and their preservation (la ya’uduhu) tires Him not. And He is the Most High, the Most Great.’[1] The Arabic words la ya’uduhu mean: nothing causes Him any trouble or fatigue and nothing is beyond His means. This disavowal of inability in turn implies that Allāh has complete and perfect control over every atom in this universe. Therefore, when one reads that nothing can render Him incapable, it implies the absolute opposite in its perfect sense; that Allāh, Exalted is He, has complete and perfect power over all. Allāh asserts His sublime majesty and glory in the same verse when He said: ‘neither drowsiness nor sleep overtakes Him’, for He has perfect life and eternal existence. There are countless verses and prophetic narrations that affirm this; moreover it is something that all Muslims agree on.

The author’s words: ‘Nothing can render Him incapable’ are in line with the verse in which Allāh describes His might (qudra): ‘Allāh cannot be withstood in any way, either in the heavens or on earth. He is All-Knowing, All-Powerful.’[2] At the end of this verse Allāh, Exalted is He, illustrates to mankind the reason why nothing can render Him incapable: ‘He is All-Knowing, All-Powerful’. The one who is incapacitated is he who lacks power or knowledge to do something. As for Allāh, even the infinitesimal matters are in His knowledge and the great celestial bodies are within His power.Reflecting over this statement and the aforementioned verses fills the heart with awe of Allah; humility before His Might; and veneration of His Perfect Control over the heavens and the earth. It increases one in faith (emān) and god-consciousness (taqwa), which is the very reason why Allah described Himself to mankind; to bring them closer to Him in devotion, awe, and veneration.

His Words: ‘Allah is over all things competent’, are the most oft-repeated phrases in the Qur’ān. Similarly, the verses that speak about the Might of Allah and his Power to do anything and to overpower anything are mentioned in almost every chapter in the Qur’ān. In fact, the essence of our belief in the Lordship of Allah is built upon His attribute of being the Creator as well as His Perfect Control over everything. Allah spoke of the greatness of the heavenly bodies when He said: ‘His Footstool encompasses the heavens and the earth’, yet He affirmed that: ‘their preservation does not tire Him’.

An appreciation of the fact that Allah is over all-things competent leads to many positive repercussions in the life of human beings. From one aspect they will be more inclined to submit themselves to the One who holds such supreme might. They will also have a true fear of it which will help them in keeping away from violating His Commands. Yet, from another perspective, it will also fill their hearts with tranquility and peace as they are convinced that ultimate power lies with Allah, the Most Just and the Most Merciful; hence they will not fear creation as much. This is a form of empowerment; when a person feels humbled before none save Allah.

Points of Benefit

1) It should be noted that this statement is not a negation that is not recommended when describing Allah as it is used in the Qur’ān and it confirms the opposite of it which is the complete power of Allah. The word “thing” here does not refer to only tangibles, but also includes non-tangibles as well. Allah is competent over tangibles as well as non-tangibles.

2) A question might be raised here. Can Allah create a God like himself? No one should answer this question by yes or no as this confirms the validity of this question. This question is wrong in the first place and hence cannot be answered. We need to correct it first. God is not created and hence how can we say “create a God like himself”!?

3) The main benefit of this attribute and other similar lordship attributes is the conclusion that it points to: He is the only one who deserves to be worshiped.


[1] Q. Al-Baqara: 2, 255.

[2] Q. Al-Fatir: 35, 44.


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About Shaikh (Dr) Haitham Al-Haddad

Dr. Haitham al-Haddad is a jurist and serves as a judge for the Islamic Council of Europe. He has studied the Islamic sciences for over 20 years under the tutelage of renowned scholars such as the late Grand Mufti of Saudi Arabia as well as the retired Head of the Kingdom's Higher Judiciary Council. He specialises in many of the Islamic sciences and submitted his doctoral thesis on Islamic jurisprudence concerning Muslim minorities. Shaikh Haitham is highly respected having specialised knowledge in the field of fiqh, usul al-fiqh, maqasid al-shari'ah, ulum al-Qur’an, tafsir, aqidah, and fiqh al-hadith. He provides complex theories which address the role of Islamic jurisprudence within a western environment whilst also critically re-analysing the approach of Islamic jurists in forming legal rulings (ifta’) within a western socio-political context. He has many well known students most of whom are active in dawah and teaching in the West. The shaikh is an Islamic jurist (faqih) and as such is qualified to deliver verdicts as a judge under Islamic law, a role he undertakes at the Islamic Council of Europe as Islamic judge and treasurer. Dr Haitham al-Haddad also sits on various the boards of advisors for Islamic organisations, mainly in the United Kingdom but also around the world.

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