What is the creed of the Righteous Predecessors regarding the Noble Qur’aan?
The creed of the as-Salaf pertaining to the Noble Qur’aan is like their creed with regard to the rest of the Attributes and Names of Allaah, and it is based upon what is proven by the Book of Allaah and the Sunnah of His Messenger (صلى الله عليه و سلم). And we all know that Allaah, The One free of all imperfection, The Most High, described the Qur’aan as being His Words, and that it is sent down from Him. So, He, Most Magnificent and Most High, Says:
وَإِنْ أَحَدٌ مِّنَ الْمُشْرِكِينَ اسْتَجَارَكَ فَأَجِرْهُ حَتَّىٰ يَسْمَعَ كَلَامَ اللَّهِ ثُمَّ أَبْلِغْهُ مَأْمَنَهُ
“And if anyone of the Mushriks seeks your protection, then grant him protection so that they may hear the Word of Allaah [the Qur’aan], and then escort him to where he can be secure” [Qur’aan, soorat at-Tawbah (9): 6].
And the intended by the “Word of Allaah” here, without any doubt, is the Noble Qur’aan. And furthermore, He, the Most High, Says:
إِنَّ هَٰذَا الْقُرْآنَ يَقُصُّ عَلَىٰ بَنِي إِسْرَائِيلَ أَكْثَرَ الَّذِي هُمْ فِيهِ يَخْتَلِفُونَ
“Verily, this Qur’aan narrates to the Children of Israel most of that in which they differ” [Qur’aan, soorat an-Naml (27): 76].
So, the Qur’aan is the Word of Allaah, The Most High, letter and meaning. He really Spoke it and bestowed it upon Jibreel, the trustworthy, who then brought it down upon the heart of Muhammad (صلى الله عليه و سلم) so that he may be one of those who warn, in the plain Arabic language.
The Salaf also believe that the Qur’aan is a Revelation, brought down by Allaah (عزّ وجلّ) upon Muhammad (صلى الله عليه و سلم) in parts over a period of twenty three years as necessitated by Allaah’s Wisdom. In addition, its revelation is either original or occasional, meaning that some of it is brought down in response to a certain occasion that necessitated its revelation, and some of it is revealed without being due to a certain reason. Also some of it is revealed as a narration of a past condition that occurred to the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) and his companions, whilst some of it comes down as original legislations, revealed for the first time. This is according to what has been mentioned by the people of knowledge pertaining to this matter.
Furthermore, the Salaf say: “The Qur’aan is in the beginning from Allaah (عزّ وجلّ), and to Him it shall return at the end of time.” This constitutes the saying of the Salaf regarding the Noble Qur’aan.
And it is something well known to us all that Allaah, The Most High, described the Qur’aan with great qualities. He described it as hakeem (wise), kareem (an honourable reciter: Noble), ‘atheem (great), and majeed (glorious). And these qualities with which Allaah has described His Words applies to the one who holds to this Book and works according to it openly and inwardly. So Allaah, The Most High, grants him from the glory, greatness, wisdom, might, and authority, something that it would not be given to the one who does not cling to the Book of Allaah (عزّ وجلّ). That is why I call upon, from this pulpit, all of the Muslims, rulers and ruled, scholars and common people, to cling hold to the Book of Allaah (عزّ وجلّ), openly and inwardly, so that they attain the might, happiness, glory, and prevalence in the East and West.
Source: Fiqhul ‘Ibaadaat – Understanding Worship, By Shaykh Muhammad bin Saalih Al-‘Uthaimeen (rahimahullah), Translated by Dr. Saleh as Saleh (rahimahullaah)