In the very beginning of Surah Yaseen, Allah takes an oath: By the Hakeem Quran.
Allah says that the Quran is hakeem. This attribute of the Quran is mentioned in multiple places in the Quran, and Allah Himself is called al-Hakeem in the Quran multiple times. What does it mean? And how is the Quran actually hakeem?
Let’s look at the three meanings of the word Hakeem.
2. Hakeem means “wise.”
The Quran is a book full of wisdom. One of the pious men from the past said, “Scholars will never be satiated by the Quran.” He meant that scholars can never finish reading of the Quran and deriving benefits. Dr. Reda Bedeir once said, “I did my PhD on Surah Yusuf. For five years, I studied only this Surah, and I have read almost every possible tafseer work on this surah. And yet every time I read it again, I derive more lessons from it.”
The Quran’s wisdom is timeless. It’s the epitome of wisdom. It gives us solutions to our modern problems, soothes our restless hearts, strengthens us during times of weakness, and is our source of spiritual guidance.
2. Hakeem also means “having authority.”
The Quran is a very authoritative book. It doesn’t just give solace and guidance, but is also a book of law. It lays down the laws for the Muslim both personally and from a governmental point of view.
Moreover, the Quran challenges wrong beliefs and false religions, urging discussion in coming to its truth. It doesn’t shy away from the fact that it’s the only word of Allah. The Quran shows it’s authority both among it’s followers and disbelievers.
3. Hakeem also has the meaning of being closely knit together.
Among the most amazing aspects is the fact that the Quran was actually a spoken word. It was spoken by the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, for over 23 years. And yet the whole book and each surah have remarkable coherence and no inconsistencies. The whole book is closely knit together with no problems in shape and structure.
To demonstrate one example, we’ll look at Surah Baqarah which was revealed over a period of almost eight to ten years and yet has remarkable coherence. The Surah has an interesting ring pattern of topics that are covered:
A. Faith vs. Unbelief (vv. 1-20)
B. God’s creation, His encompassing knowledge (here regarding Adam and Eve’s sins) (vv. 21-39)
C. Moses delivers law to Children of Israel (vv. 40-103)
D. Abraham was tested, Ka’ba built by Abraham and Ishmael; responses to People of the book (vv. 104-141)
E. Ka’ba is the new qibla; this is a test of faith; compete in doing good (vv. 142-152)
D’. Muslims will be tested, Ka’ba, Safa and Mina; responses to Polytheists (vv. 153-177)
C’. Prophet delivers law to Muslims (vv. 178-253)
B’. God’s creation; His encompassing knowledge (here regarding charity and financial dealing) (vv. 254-284)
A’. Faith vs. Unbelief (vv. 285-286)
As we can see, the first part of the Surah A, corresponds to the last part A’. B corresponds to B’, and so on. It is almost like a ring in its structure and what is amazing is that each ring has a ring within it. Let’s take the section D’ as an example:
153-158 Exhortation to Believers, seek help with patience and prayer, God will test you with adversity
159-160 Those Jews and Christians who conceal guidance are cursed
161-173 Those who disbelieve, who worship others besides God,will not leave the Fire
174-176 Those Jews and Christians who conceal the scripture will experience torment
177 Good are those who keep up the prayer, who are patient in adversity
We again see a ring structure. Theres a lot more that could be said about coherence and simply the complexity of Surah Baqarah itself. Another writing on this blog looks into the details of it— https://understandquran.com/coherence-evidence-of-the-qurans-literary-depth.html.
The Quran is beautiful, and the way it describes itself is beautiful as well. In using just one word, Hakeem, Allah leaves much for believers to reflect on. The Quran is wise, authoritative, and wonderfully knit together. It could even be said that this one word alone signifies that the Quran is from Allah and not from the words of a human.
by Raiiq Ridwan