Al-Nahl (The Bees) Sura 16: Verse 90

"God commands justice, the doing of good, and giving to [one's] relatives; and He forbids all that is shameful, and that runs counter to reason, in addition to aggression; He exhorts you so that you may bear this in mind."

This verse condenses the goals and fundamentals of the Islamic law. What God commands can be crystallized in these three concepts: the establishment of justice, going beyond justice and fairness to the best and most excellent, and the observation of these virtues in one's extended family so that they may be developed through the families to the society as a whole. Justice is comprehensive, and starts in the limited ranges of relations: among the family members, fellow workers, business partners, neighbours or local community; then it extends to various areas such as the social-economic, political, legal, judicial and international ones. One who is authoritative or dictatorial with his/her spouse or children cannot sincerely defend justice in the relations between the state and the people or between different countries in the world. Since the family is the nucleus of the society, justice, love and kindness should dominate the relations between its members, so that the family relations become a model for the whole society that should be followed and extended. On the opposite side, what runs counter to moral decency or reason is forbidden, as well as any aggression or injustice committed by any party against another.

These goals and fundamentals of Islamic law may be indicated and elaborated on in legal documents or juristic works for the benefit of practicing lawyers, but are stressed in the Quran to be read, recited and reflected on by all the believers. In this way, the Muslim masses, or a considerable part of them, will develop a legal taste about human rights and principles of justice that will evolve into a mass culture and a mature public opinion which is aware of the general direction that the legal system ought to maintain. It must also be pointed out that however central a position justice occupies in legality and morality, one is urged to go beyond it and do the best and most excellent by being kind, generous, forgiving, magnanimous, and working hard to reach perfection. In this way faith, morality and legality work together and support one another in developing the human individual and society. Rules of Shariah are meant to guard morality, but they only provide the basics which protect the security and interests of the whole society in a fair and balanced way, while individual morality has no limits in excellence, generosity, and altruism.

Compiled From:
"Concepts of the Quran" - Fathi Osman, p. 750