How the Qur’an was Compiled

QUESTION:
I wanted to know was the entire Qur’an compiled before the Prophet’s death or after by the khalifas. What I mean by compiled is the ordering of the surahs. Before the Prophet’s death (Allah bless him & give him peace), did the sahabas know that the #1 surah is fatiha and #2 is suratul baqara and so forth? Or was this order established by the khalifas like during Uthman (Allah be pleased with him) time?

ANSWER:
Assalamu alaykum

In the name of Allah the inspirer of truth

The order of the verses in each chapter of the Qur’an was divinely inspired, even though they were revealed portion by portion as the need arose over a 23 year period.

The Messenger of Allah (upon him be peace) would instruct the scribes to place each verse in its proper place as they were revealed.

It is related by Imam Ahmad and the authors of the Sunans on the authority of Uthman radhiyallahu anhu, “When a chapter was revealed of the Qur’an that had a number of verses, the Messenger of Allah would call one of the scribes and say, “Place these verses in the chapter which states such and such…” Hence, from this and other narrations it is understood that not only was the arrangement of the verses divinely inspired, so were the chapters according to many scholars. (Fath al-Bari, Bab ta’lif al-Qur’an).

Although there is agreement concerning the arrangement of the verses being divinely inspired, there is a difference of opinion concerning the order of the chapters. The stronger opinion seems to be that the arrangement of many chapters was also divinely inspired, although some chapters were placed through the ijtihad [inference] of the Companions. For instance, it is reported that the Companions placed Surat al-Tawba after Surat al-Anfal, through their own deliberation, as they did not have any information concerning this from the Messenger (upon him be peace).

A good English work on the sciences of the Qur’an is, Approach to the Qur’anic Sciences by Shaykh Mufti Taqi Uthmani. An abridged version of it is found in the beginning of the Ma`arif al-Qur’an [a Qur’anic tafsir in Urdu, which is available in English translation as well]. Well worth reading.

Wassalam
Mufti Abdur Rahman Ibn Yusuf Mangera

More information here http://qa.muftisays.com/?2760

5 thoughts on “How the Qur’an was Compiled”

  1. Salam

    Can you please check this statement:-

    For instance, it is reported that the Companions placed Surat al-Tawba after Surat al-Anfal, through their own deliberation, as they did have any information concerning this from the Messenger (upon him be peace).

    Should this be “…as they did have…” OR “…as they did not have…”

    Wa Salam

    1. Wa Alaykum Salam
      I have rechecked the article and corrected the mistake that was present from the source I used. I have also added another link to the post for further clarification.
      Jazakallah
      Wasalam

  2. Asslamoalaikum. The sunni scholars do not mention any thing about compilation by Hazarat Ali. I understand that the original translation of Abdulla Yusufali also gave the number of sura as given in the compilation of Hazarat Ali alongwith number of Usmani Quran.
    There is no confirmation that when Hazarat Usman issued a decree to destroy all the copies other then official version (to day known as Usmani Quran) even copy compiled by Hazrat ali was also destroyed.

  3. Question pls.
    can we refere Hadith Qudusi as part of the Holy Quran since its revealed to the Holy prophet directly from God?

  4. Asak, i didnt know where to comment about the website itself so i’ll comment here. please change the website so the CII thing doesnt play automatically everytime you load the page. It kind of scares me…and is slightly annoying. Sorry to say.

    Im sorry to comment under this article but i didnt know where else to comment.

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