The Law of Liquor in Islam

Hi readers! In this article, I will invite you all to know about Liquor in Islam. Surely, we are familiar with liquor, drinks that can make someone drunk. I think knowing that is very important, given the huge number of people who drink it. Many people also say that someone will lose consciousness and there are so many opportunities to commit a crime.

In Islamic teachings liquor or all drinks that can make a person drunk, lose consciousness, called khamr. Such an understanding is derived from the hadith of the prophet Muhammad;

كل مسكر خمر وكل خمر حرام ومن شرب الخمر في الدنيا فمات وهو يدمنها لم يشربها في الأخرة

Every intoxicating drink is khamr, and every law is haram (forbidden). Whosoever drank it in the world then he died in the state of still drinking it (addicted) and no treatment, then he will not drink it in the afterlife. (The hadith is narrated by Imam Muslim, 3740, and Ahmad bin Hanbal, al-Asyribah, 23).

If we look at the hadith of Prophet Muhammad above, then we will know that the law of liquor is haram (forbidden), because it falls into the category of khamr and can be intoxicating.

But what we need to know is that the prohibition of liquor (khamr) in the teachings of Islam is not in one time. In the beginning it was not the kind of drink that was immediately forbidden to drink. There are four phases of banning liquor (khamr). In the first phase of Islam only mentions liquor (khamr) only as a drink that can make drunk, loss of consciousness. In other words, at first the drink can still be consumed. It can be seen in the word of Allah;

وَمِن ثَمَرَٰتِ ٱلنَّخِيلِ وَٱلۡأَعۡنَٰبِ تَتَّخِذُونَ مِنۡهُ سَكَرٗا وَرِزۡقًا حَسَنًاۚ إِنَّ فِي ذَٰلِكَ لَأٓيَةٗ لِّقَوۡمٖ يَعۡقِلُونَ ٦٧  

And of the fruits of the palms and the grapes– you obtain from them intoxication and goodly provision; most surely there is a sign in this for a people who ponder. (An-Nahl- [16]; 67).
In the second phase, Islam refers to liquor (khamr) as one of the great sins as well as gambling. Allah said;

يَسۡ‍َٔلُونَكَ عَنِ ٱلۡخَمۡرِ وَٱلۡمَيۡسِرِۖ قُلۡ فِيهِمَآ إِثۡمٞ كَبِيرٞ وَمَنَٰفِعُ لِلنَّاسِ وَإِثۡمُهُمَآ أَكۡبَرُ مِن نَّفۡعِهِمَاۗ وَيَسۡ‍َٔلُونَكَ مَاذَا يُنفِقُونَۖ قُلِ ٱلۡعَفۡوَۗ كَذَٰلِكَ يُبَيِّنُ ٱللَّهُ لَكُمُ ٱلۡأٓيَٰتِ لَعَلَّكُمۡ تَتَفَكَّرُونَ ٢١٩  

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. And they ask you as to what they should spend. Say: What you can spare. Thus, does Allah make clear to you the communications, that you may ponder. (Al-Baqarah [02]; 219).
After the verse down some muslims have actually left liquor (khamr) for being a great sin, but there are also some muslims who still drink it out of habit.
As for the third phase of Islam prohibits a muslim drink liquor (khamr) when going to pray. This ban arises because there is a person named Juhdi who acts as the leader of maghrib prayer. But when the prayer is not clear. That is why the Qur’an goes down that explains it;

يَٰٓأَيُّهَا ٱلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ لَا تَقۡرَبُواْ ٱلصَّلَوٰةَ وَأَنتُمۡ سُكَٰرَىٰ حَتَّىٰ تَعۡلَمُواْ مَا تَقُولُونَ وَلَا جُنُبًا إِلَّا عَابِرِي سَبِيلٍ حَتَّىٰ تَغۡتَسِلُواْۚ وَإِن كُنتُم مَّرۡضَىٰٓ أَوۡ عَلَىٰ سَفَرٍ أَوۡ جَآءَ أَحَدٞ مِّنكُم مِّنَ ٱلۡغَآئِطِ أَوۡ لَٰمَسۡتُمُ ٱلنِّسَآءَ فَلَمۡ تَجِدُواْ مَآءٗ فَتَيَمَّمُواْ صَعِيدٗا طَيِّبٗا فَٱمۡسَحُواْ بِوُجُوهِكُمۡ وَأَيۡدِيكُمۡۗ إِنَّ ٱللَّهَ كَانَ عَفُوًّا غَفُورًا ٤٣  

O you who believe! do not go near prayer when you are Intoxicated until you know (well) what you say, nor when you are under an obligation to perform a bath– unless (you are) travelling on the road– until you have washed yourselves; and if you are sick, or on a journey, or one of you come from the privy or you have touched the women, and you cannot find water, betake yourselves to pure earth, then wipe your faces and your hands; surely Allah is Pardoning, Forgiving. (An-Nisaa’ [04]; 43).
The fourth phase is the phase of the establishment of liquor (khamr) as a drink that is forbidden to consume. Allah said;

يَٰٓأَيُّهَا ٱلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُوٓاْ إِنَّمَا ٱلۡخَمۡرُ وَٱلۡمَيۡسِرُ وَٱلۡأَنصَابُ وَٱلۡأَزۡلَٰمُ رِجۡسٞ مِّنۡ عَمَلِ ٱلشَّيۡطَٰنِ فَٱجۡتَنِبُوهُ لَعَلَّكُمۡ تُفۡلِحُونَ ٩٠  
إِنَّمَا يُرِيدُ ٱلشَّيۡطَٰنُ أَن يُوقِعَ بَيۡنَكُمُ ٱلۡعَدَٰوَةَ وَٱلۡبَغۡضَآءَ فِي ٱلۡخَمۡرِ وَٱلۡمَيۡسِرِ وَيَصُدَّكُمۡ عَن ذِكۡرِ ٱللَّهِ وَعَنِ ٱلصَّلَوٰةِۖ فَهَلۡ أَنتُم مُّنتَهُونَ ٩١  

O you who believe! intoxicants and games of chance and (sacrificing to) stones set up and (dividing by) arrows are only an uncleanness, the Shaitan’s work; shun it therefore that you may be successful [90] The Shaitan only desires to cause enmity and hatred to spring in your midst by means of intoxicants and games of chance, and to keep you off from the remembrance of Allah and from prayer. Will you then desist? [91]. (Al-Maa’idah [5]; 90-91).
Here, of course we are clear that this prohibition of liquor (khamr) is in the hadith of the prophet Muhammad and some verses of Qur’an as I have mentioned above.
The wisdom we can take from the prohibition of liquor (khamr) which gradually is so that the community is ready and able to accept the ban. I can not imagine how the people would react at that time if the drinks they used to drink were directly forbidden. Surely, they will be very heavy to accept it, even impossible they even reject the teachings of Islam.
From the process of prohibition, we also know, that convey the teachings of Islam should also be done in a peaceful way, by looking at the condition of society and their readiness.
So, what if there is a muslim still drinking liquor (khamr)? What is the punishment?
In Islamic teachings, if a muslim commits a forbidden act, whose prohibition is clearly explained in the Qur’an or hadith, or even both, then the person is subject to punishment. Likewise, also if a muslim drink liquor (khamr).

In the provisions of Islamic law, if there is a muslim drink liquor (khamr) then he must be whipped as much as forty times. The punishment provisions we can see in the hadith of the prophet Muhammad;

من أنس بن مالك أن النبي صلي الله عليه وسلم أتي برجل قد شرب الخمر فجلده بجريدتين نحو أربعين
From Anas bin Malik, that once a person who had drunk the khamr was brought to the prophet Muhammad shallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, he then whipped the person it with palm-stemmed forty times. (The hadith is narrated by Muslim, 1706).

Here let us already know about the status of liquor (khamr) and punishment for a Muslim who drank it. This prohibition of liquor is none other than to manifest love among fellow human beings, because it can make a person lose consciousness so it is possible in time, when in a drunken state, he will commit criminal acts, such as killing, creating a chaotic environment and so forth.
But what I want to say next is that in order to apply the punishment we should not be careless, especially if we are in an area or country that is not based on Islamic law, such as a democratic country. If we are in a region or country like that, I think it’s better not to run the punishment because it would be against the law in the region or country, we live in. If we continue to do so the consequences will arise new problems and we will be a suspect of a crime.
I think enough for this article about liquor in Islam. See you again in the next article!


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