The Ten Commandments
Commented by the Prophet Muhammad
- Peace and blessings upon him -
Everybody knows more or less the content of the famous Ten
Commandments of the Old Testament. What does however attract
a muslims special attention, is the fact that the
Prophet Muhammad ﷺ
peace and blessings upon him - has reported an explanation
of it from God Himself, referring to the following quranic
verse, where God says to Moses - peace be upon him:
And We ordained for him in the
tablets admonition of every kind and clear explanation of
all things; so take hold of them with firmness and enjoin
your people to take hold of what is best thereof; I will
show you the abode of the transgressors.
Qurân 7, 145
In fact this is not really an explication or commentary,
but more a divine information concerning the fortunate or
unfortunate consequences for those who either live by the
Ten Commandments or those who offend them. Now, only a divinely
inspired Messenger (rasûl) or a Prophet (nabî)
is capable of telling or reporting from God such precise
(items of) information on the consequences of human acts
in both this and the future life. Therefore this interest
in the study of the Ten Commandments according to the Islamic
Tradition. Not to forget that these commandments are found
in differents Surahs in the Qurân.
Furthermore we want to point out that - in Arabic - these
commandments are called by the term of abwâb,
which means gates or chapters . This implies
that these commandments are synthectic in their nature,
summarizing other chapters as subdivisions.
According to Jâbir ben Abd Allah who reported: I
have heard the Messenger of Allah ﷺ
may Allah spread on him His unitative graces and His salvific
peace - say:
Among what had been given to Moses in the Tables were ten
1- O Moses, do not associate anything to My cult [of
worship] (lâ tushrik bî shaian)!
For My word will prove itself to be true, the Fire will
strike the faces of those who associate [anything in their
worship] (these are the polytheists, al-mushrikûn).
2 - Be thankful to Me and to your parents! I shall
preserve you from ruin, lengthen your life-span, provide
you (down here) with a life of comfort and I shall lead
you towards a greater good.
3 - Do not kill any soul which God has forbidden [to you
], except what is justified (by the divine law)! Otherwise
you will see the whole earth squeezing upon you (meaning
that you will be in great fear and despair whereever you
are), and the heavens will close upon you completely and
you will turn to hell with My anger.
4 - Do not swear falsely by My name! Because I shall
neither sanctify, nor purify those who neither honour Me
(lam yunazzih-Nî) nor magnify My Names (lam
5 - Do not envy anyone because of the favours someone
has been granted by God! Because the envier is the enemy
of My grace, as he opposes My decree and is angry at how
I have distributed the good things in life among My servants.
6 - Do not witness [falsely] of what your eyes have
not seen nor your heart retained! For, on the day Resurrection,
I shall paralyse those who have witnessed falsely (ahl
al-shahâdât) and I shall call them speedily
to account (hathîthan).
7 - Do not commit a sexual sin; do not steal! Otherwise
I shall veil My face and close the gates of heaven for you.
8 - Love for the other (lit. for the people), what
you love for yourself.
9 - Do not sacrifice for anyone else but Me! For I
shall not accept as sacrificial animals except those on
which My Name has been pronounced sincerely, having intended
10 - Sanctify for Me the Saturday, you and all of
The Prophet Muhammad ﷺ
peace and blessing be upon him - has said: God has
instituted for Moses this day of Saturday as a holiday and
day of recollection (`idan); for us He has chosen
the day of Friday and made it for us a holiday and day of