We have, without doubt, sent down the Message; and We will assuredly guard it (from corruption).
The Promise to Protect the Qur’an
Includes the Protection of Hadith
As a matter of principle, all learned people agree that the Qur’an is
neither the name of the words of the Qur’an alone, nor that of its meanings alone, instead, a combination of both is called the Qur’an. The reason is that Quranic meanings and subjects appear in other books as
well, and as for Islamic writings, their subjects are essentially Quranic,
but they are not called Qur’an – because, they are not the words of the
Qur’an. Similarly, if a person were to borrow different words and sentences from the Holy Qur’an and write an article or treatise, no one will call this too by the name of Qur’an, even though there is no word from
outside the Qur’an. This tells us that the Qur’an is the exclusive name of
the particular Divinely revealed Book the words and meanings of which
are simultaneously protected.
This also leads us to the ruling that the practice of people who publish the translation of the Quran only in a foreign language and give it the name, for example, an English Qur’an or an Urdu Qur’ain, is not permissible at all – because, that is not the Qur’an. And when we know that
Quran is not the name of the words of the Qur’an alone, but that its
meaning too are a part of it, then, the responsibility of protecting the
Qur’an taken upon Himself in this verse by Allah Ta’ala covers the total
protection of the words of the Qur’an as well as the meanings of the
Quran in that they remain protected against alteration or distortion.
And it is obvious that the meanings of the Qur’an are the same as
the Holy Prophet (S) was sent to teach – as pointed out in the Qur’an:
It means: ‘You have been sent to explain the meaning of what bas been revealed for them.’ And this is what the verse: ‘Teaches them the Book and the Wisdom’ (3:164) also means.
And that is why he said:
‘As for me, I have been sent as a teacher’
Now, when the Holy Prophet was sent to explain the meanings of
the Qur’an and to impart education to people, then, he used a set of his
sayings and doings as the medium of instruction for his community, and
this very set of his words and deeds is known as the Hadith.
One who says that the Hadith of the Rasul of Allah
are not absolutely protected is really saying that
the Qur’an is not protected.
There are people around who would like to deceive the whole world
by saying that the treasure of Ahadith present in authentic books is not trustworthy because it has been documented much later than the blessed age of the Holy Prophet s. First of all, even this assumption of
theirs is not correct because the process of protection and documentation
of Ahadith had already started within the age of prophethood itself,
though it was completed later. In addition to that, the Hadith of the
Rasul of Allah is really the explanation of the Qur’an and the meaning of
the Qur’an. Their protection is something which Allah Tala has taken
upon Himself. Then, how can it be possible that only the words of the
Qur’an remain protected while the meanings of the Qur’an (that is, the
Ahadith of the Rasul go to waste?
Shafi, Muhammad (2008). Maariful Quran. (Vol .5 surah 15 verse 9). English-MaarifulQuran-MuftiShafiUsmaniRA-Vol-5.pdf (islamicweblibrary.com)