About four decades have passed since Sheikh ‘Abdullah bin Muhammad bin Humaid (1908-1981), ex-Chief Justice of Saudi Arabia, published his lengthy, impassioned, essay on jihad. This essay, still available on the Internet, is the only one that Saudi religious scholars chose to include with the Noble Quran — a modern, nine volume, English translation of the Quran, which includes ancient commentary.
A cursory reading of Sheikh bin Humaid’s essay should forever silence any fantasies regarding traditional Islam’s peaceful disposition toward the non-Muslim world. As the Saudi publisher says in his prefatory note:
“But, as regards the reward and blessing, there is one deed which is very great in comparison to all the acts of worship and all the good deed[s] — and that is Jihad!”
The publisher continues:
“Never before such an article was seen, describing Jihad in its true colours — so heart evoking and encouraging!… We are publishing this article and recommend every Muslim not only to read it himself but to offer every other Muslim brother within his read.”
To be clear, Sheikh bin Humaid defines “jihad” as “holy fighting in Allah’s Cause.” This is not, in other words, the “greater jihad,” or “spiritual struggle,” that some Muslim apologists cite, possibly to obfuscate the primary historical usage of the word. Jihad is war fought with “the heart,” “the hand (weapons, etc.),” and “the tongue” (2).
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