The Shia propagandists will argue that Abu Bakr (رضّى الله عنه) went against the Quranic rules of inheritance, but these rules of inheritance do not apply to Prophets as clearly mentioned by the Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) in both Sunni and Shia Hadith. The very fact that such Hadith exist in the Shia canon makes impotent the Shia attack on the personality of Abu Bakr (رضّى الله عنه). In Al-Kafi, the most reliable of the Shia books of Hadith, we find the following Sahih narration:

“The Prophets did not leave dinars and dirhams as inheritance, but they left knowledge.” (al-Kafi, vol. 1 p. 42)

The Shia will argue that the Quranic verses on inheritance pertain to Prophets and non-Prophets alike, and that these rules are all-inclusive without exception. This argument is weakened by the fact that the Shia Ulema themselves make exceptions in the rules of inheritance. For example, the Quran declares that children inherit wealth from their parents. However, the Shia Ulema (as well as the Sunni Ulema) make an exception to this general rule: Kaffir children do not inherit from their Muslim parents. Hence, not everyone is encompassed in the Quranic verse regarding inheritance; it is the general rule for the average person, but there are exceptions for special cases (and Prophets are one such exception).

The Shia propagandists may resort to dogmatic rhetoric declaring the supermacy of the Quran and accusing the Sunnis of straying away from it by making exceptions to the laws of inheritance. Unfortunately for the Shia, their own Infallible Imams have made exceptions to the rules of inheritance that would make any Shia accusations against the Sunnis to be simply hypocritical and sanctimonious. For example, the Shia Infallible Imams have prohibited some heirs from inheriting certain items of their estates, including the Dhul Fiqar (Ali’s sword [رضّى الله عنه]), the Quran, the Prophet’s ring, and his bodily garments. These items were excluded from the Quranic laws of inheritance and reserved for the new Imam, instead of being properly distributed amongst the other children and eligible heirs. Hence, Imams had a different system of inheritance, so why is it surprising for the Shia that the Prophets also have their own system of inheritance distinct from non-Prophets?

The Quran gives the general rule, and then the Hadith give the details and exceptions to this rule. For example, the Quran says that men can only marry upto four wives. And yet, we find in Hadith that the Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) was exempted from this ruling and he married more than four. Thus, the rules of Hadith grant an exception to the Prophets, and their rules are different than the rules of ordinary people as mentioned in the Quran. Any time a Shia propagandist attempts to assert that we are going against the Quran, we remind them that Prophets in general have different rules in certain matters; otherwise, are the Shia accusing the Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم) of going against the Quran by marrying more than four women? If the rule about marrying four women can be different for Prophets, then similarly we see no problem in the rules of inheritance also being different for Prophets. The analogy is perfect, and completely negates the Shia claims.

Furthermore, the Shia admit that the Quran dictates that if a person becomes poor, then he becomes eligible for Zakat. This is a right of an individual based in the Quran. And yet, the Hadith tells us that the Prophet’s family is not permitted to take Zakat; even if he becomes poor, a member of the Prophet’s family could not ask for Zakat. This fact is accepted by the Shia. If the Prophet’s family could not recieve Zakat, then why are we surprised when they are also not allowed to recieve inheritance from the Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وآله وسلّم)? Both rules come from the Hadith, which modify the general rule in the Quran.