When Hz. Yusuf (Joseph) became an administrator in Egypt, had he started the duty of prophethood? Did he decree based on the laws of Allah when he was the prime minister in Egypt?
When Hz. Yusuf (Joseph) became an administrator in Egypt, had he started the duty of prophethood? It is written somewhere that Hz. Yusuf made use of the laws of Egypt that did not contradict Allah’s decrees for a while in order to spread Allah's decrees. Will you give information about it?
Submitted by on Thu, 08/02/2018 - 16:32
Dear Brother / Sister,
- According to what Ibn Ishaq states, Walid b. Rayyan, the king of Egypt, believed in Hz. Yusuf and accepted his religion. (see Ibn Kathir, an-Nihaya, 1/241; Qasasul-Anbiya, 137)
However, we could not find any information about based on what law Hz. Yusuf acted when he was the prime minister in Egypt. Besides, it is not stated in the Quran what kind of a shari’ah was given to Hz. Yusuf and how he fulfilled the duty of prophethood. Therefore, it is not easy to express a definite degree regarding the issue.
Nevertheless, different interpretations were made about the concepts “hukm (power)” and “ilm (knowledge) mentioned in the following verse: “When Joseph attained His full manhood, We gave him power and knowledge: thus do We reward those who do right.” (Yusuf, 12/22)
According to some scholars, “hukm” is prophethood and “ilm” is the knowledge given together with prophethood. (Ibn Ashur, the interpretation of the relevant verse)
In some tafsir books, “hukm” is interpreted as prophethood and “ilm” as religious knowledge. (Razi, the interpretation of the relevant verse)
- According to some scholars, revelation was sent to Hz. Yusuf when he was thrown into the well. Those who hold this view regard the following verse as evidence: “and We put into his heart (this Message):…”(Yusuf, 12/15) However, some scholars accept the concept “revelation" in the verse in the sense of inspiration. (Razi, the interpretation of the relevant verse)
- When Hz. Yusuf, who was given the duty of prophethood whether he was in the well or when he went to Egypt, undertook the duty of administration in Egypt, it is certain that there was a legal system other than his shari’ah in Egypt. As a matter of fact, he acted contrarily to the legal system in Egypt when he detained his full brother based on the deal he made with his brothers. “...Thus did We plan for Joseph. He could not take his brother by the law of the king except that Allah willed it (so)...” (Yusuf, 12/76) The verse above emphasizes this fact. (see Razi, Ibn Kathir, Qurtubi, Qasimi, Maraghi, the interpretation of the relevant verse)
The statement “He could not take his brother by the law of the king” in the verse above indicates that Hz. Yusuf acted in accordance with the laws of Egypt in principle.
- It is permissible to act in accordance with customary laws and regulations unless they are contrary to Allah’s orders. They are regarded to have got permission from the relevant shari’ah.
Questions on Islam
- Prophet Yusuf [Joseph] (Peace be upon him)
- Why were there not any women prophets? Why did Allah choose prophets among men?
- Did the king who lived at the same age as the Prophet Joseph (Yusuf) was a prophet accept Yusuf’s prophethood or did he oppose Yusuf?
- Did Joseph (pbuh) set up a trap for his brothers?
- Was Hz. Yusuf sent only to teach his brothers?
- How can it fit a prophet (Hz. Yaqub) to cry for forty years because of being separated from his son (Hz. Yusuf)? Would it not have been better if he had shown patience?
- Will you summarize the life of Hazrat Yusuf?
- “Take Thou my soul (at death) as one submitting to Thy will (as a Muslim), and unite me with the righteous." (Yusuf, 12/101) Did Hz. Yusuf die immediately after his prayer above?
- In some verses, it is stated that "ghayb (the unseen, the unknown) cannot be known by anyone except Allah. How can it be explained under the light of these verses that some prophets and saints give news about the future?
- What is the real nature of the prostration before Hz. Yusuf mentioned in verse 100 of the chapter of Yusuf?