Jihad Linguistically and Legally.
By: Shaykh ‘Abdullaah ‘Azzaam Rahimahullaah.
It is taken from Juhud – Yajhadu – Juhdan. So initially al-Juhd is with Dhammah or Fathhah which is al-was’ (strength) or at-Taaqah (power), and it is said: al-Juhd (with Dhammah) is al-was’ (strength) or at-Taaqah (power), and al-Jahd (with Fathhah) is al-Mushaqqah (hardship). Al-Jahd (with Fathhah) is used as al-Ghaayah (i.e. taking to limits):
“They swore by Allah their strongest (Jahda) oaths (i.e. took it to limits)” 5:53
Which means to complete and to end their promise. So al-Juhd and al-Jihaad linguistically is to sacrifice to ones utmost according to a person’s ability with strength, in order to obtain the beloved or to avert the hated / see Lisaan-ul-‘Arab and al-Qaamoos al-Muheet.
Al-Jihad legally in Shar’iah:
The four Fuqaha’ have agreed that al-Jihaad is al-Qitaal (fighting) and to help there in (i.e. in Qitaal).
To you is the definition of the four jurists:
It says in Fath al-Qadeer by Ibn Humaam 5/187: “al-Jihaad: calling the Kuffar to the religion of truth and to fight them if they do not accept”. al-Kaasaani said in al-Badaa’i’, 9/4299 “To sacrifice ones strength and energy in Fighting in the way of Allah ‘Azza wa-Jal with ones life, property and the tongue and whatever besides”.
For a Muslim to fight against a Kaafir who is not under oath, to raise the word of Allah, or if he (Kaafir) is in his (Muslim’s) presence (in order to attack him), or upon his (Kaafir) entering his (Muslim’s) land. (Haashiya al-‘Adawi/as-Sa’eedi 2/2 and ash-Sharh as-Sagheer/Aqrab al-Masaalik by ad-Dardeer 2/267)
Al-Baajawari said, “al-Jihaad means: al-Qitaal (fighting) in the way of Allah”, al-Baajawari / Ibnul-Qaasim 2/261. Ibn Hajr said in al-Fath 6/2, “…and legally (it means) sacrificial striving in fighting the Kuffar”
“To Fight the Kuffar” see Mataalibu Ulin-Nahi 2/497. “al-Jihaad is al-Qitaal (fighting) and to sacrifice all strength in it to raise the Word of Allah”, see ‘Umdatul-Fiqh p.166, and Muntahal-Iraadaat 1/302.
The Conclusive Statement:
Indeed whenever the word “Jihaad” is spoken then verily it means al-Qitaal (fighting), and the phrase “Fee Sabeelillah” (in the way of Allah) is spoken then surely it means al-Jihaad.
Ibn Rushd said in his Muqaddamaat 1/369: “…and Jihaad of the Sword: to fight the Mushrikeen for the Deen. So whoever tires himself for the sake of Allah, he strove in the way of Allah. Except that when ‘Jihaad Feesabeelillah’ is said, then it cannot be applied (to everything) in general except striving against the Kuffar with the sword until they enter Islam, or pay the Jizya with willing submission and they are under humiliation”.
Ibn Hajr said in Fath al-Baari 6/29: “…and by the phrase Feesabeelillah, Jihaad is implied”