The Quranic verses, from which the Islamic law regarding intoxicants has been derived, are as follows:
‘And from the fruit of the date- palm and the vine ye get out intoxicants and good provisions. Indeed in that is a sign for a people who reason’. (TMQ-16:67)
This verse was revealed during the period when intoxicants had not been prohibited by the Quran. Hence, intoxicants have been mentioned in this verse along with the halal/lawful food. However, in this verse, the word intoxicant is followed by the words wholesome food, which gives us a hint that intoxicants are not amongst wholesome foods. This is a Makki surah in which the intoxicants have been regarded as objectionable. In the subsequent Madani surahs intoxicants have been totally prohibited.
”They ask you about intoxicants and games of chance. Say, ‘In both of them there is a great sin and means of profit for men, and their sin is greater than their profit.” (TMQ-2:219)
In this verse ‘means of profit for men’ hint at the worldly gains. For example, some people may benefit from alcohol as it makes them mentally and physically active. It also increases sexual prowess due to which alcohol is commonly consumed by people. Those who are involved in alcohol trade also gain huge profits. On the other hand, consuming alcohol is a grave sin and it may lead to a lot of harm. It adversely affects one’s spirituality and one’s intellect. Therefore, in this verse Allah (saw) has enlightened us about the fact that the sin and harm of alcoholism outweighs its benefits. So it does not make any sense to approve of a deadly thing like alcohol simply because it offers some worldly benefits.
In my next post, I shall discuss the remaining Quranic verses related to intoxicants.
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