Differences between - Hamas - ’ISIS / IS’

Edited[*] by OmarKN, from 2014

Whatever ’IS’ is doing what they are doing - it is not Islam!
You just cannot go and proclaim an Islamic state and kill your way towards it! This is not the way of our Prophet Muhammad ( sallAllahu `aleihi wa sallam ) How can they not know this? How can they discard everything our Ummah has agreed upon over the centuries? This not Islam! [see below - fatwas]

There have been those who want to erase the difference between the Islamic groups in order to serve their political agenda. They want to blame Islam in general and the Muslims of the world for every bad thing done by the extremists. So lately, when Israel Zionist PM tried to equalize Hamas and IS.

The following comparison shows just one aspect of the difference of doctrine between Islamic groups, as there are plenty more interpretations existing.

Primary Differences

1. Relationship with others

On the relationship with others, who are religiously and politically different in times of peace and war:

’IS’ battles against all of those that are different from it.

Hamas deals with those who are different — except for Israel — on the basis of peace, including those who are religiously different.

2a. Relationship Toward The Shia Muslims

’IS’ does believe so.

Hamas does not consider Shiites infidels. scholars believe that Shiites are an Islamic group that strayed from the teachings of Islam, though it does not consider them infidels in the doctrinal sense of the word.

2b. Relationship With Christians and Jews

Concerning the relationship with Christians and Jews, Hamas’ position is based on Verse 9 of the Quranic Surat al-Mumtahanah:


{God does not forbid you from those who do not fight you because of religion and do not expel you from your homes — from being righteous toward them and acting justly toward them. Indeed, God loves those who act justly.} Sura 60, verse 8

2c. Relationship With Pagans (al-mushrikūn)

Part of a hadith sahīh (sound hadith):

`Umar radiyaa  sent a silken cloak to his (pagan - mushrik) brother, who was from the inhabitants of Mecca before he (`Umar’s brother) embraced Islam.
(Al-Bukhari 'The Book of Al-Adāb (Good Manners)', book 73, chapter 9, that is
he has a whole chapter on this topic: 'To be good to one’s pagan (mushrik) brother')

3a. Concerning Governance

Concerning governance, democracy, the civil state, citizenship and the formation of political parties:

’IS’ considers them blasphemy whose proponents must be killed.

They recognize and encourage these concepts.


The establishment of a caliphate is advocated by IS.

Hamas’ literature does not call for the establishment of a caliphate. Hamas rejects a religious theocratic government and calls for a civil state with an Islamic reference, with no caliphate label, as explained by Qaradawi's book, “The Jurisprudence of the State in Islam,” which is studied by Hamas’ Sharia scholars.

3b. The Role Of Politics

’IS’ views the concept of political partnership as blasphemous and contrary to Islamic rules, for it is controlled by positive laws that are away from the divine law. It believes in the access to power through armed force only and does not underestimate its Salafist jihadist ideology.

Hamas’ short term strategy to reach power stems from the structures that are based on political partnership. This is part of its pragmatism that requires the movement to participate in democratic elections.

3c. Gaining Power In Society

’IS’ IS began its work by imposing borders on the people.

- Hamas aims to organize and prepare society before adopting the provisions of Sharia, one of the central differences between IS and Hamas. This orientation goes in line with the Muslim Brotherhood theory that calls for the formation of a Muslim individual first, then a Muslim family, in order to establish a Muslim society and then a Muslim state.

- Hamas does not base its rules solely on Sharia, but mixes it with positive laws and is committed to the gradual implementation of Sharia.

-the Brotherhood slogan: "If you create an Islamic state within yourselves, it will be created on your land."

4a. IS Critique Of Hamas

From an IS pamphlet:

“IS considers Hamas’ participation in the elections and its application of the positive law as part of the polytheistic innovations worthy of the fires of hell.”

“Hamas is violating Sharia by adding a Palestinian nationalist nature to its resistance to the Israeli occupation and by not speaking of the Islamic faith. This is because Islam requires Muslims to engage in war to establish a complete international Islamic community that is not limited to a particular geographic area.”

4b. Hamas Critique Of ’IS’

Hamas scholars consider ’IS’ as follows:

- it is in violation of Sharia, they do not refer to the scholars of the Islamic nation.
- IS has no Sharia scholars in its ranks, and
- it has split away from the larger Muslim community and
- with zero consultation announced the establishment of the caliphate.
- IS believes that everyone who has a different opinion is an infidel and
- it carries out mass murders without distinction.

4c. Another Hamas Scholar On ’IS’:

This Hamas scholar holds that:

- Hamas belongs to the moderate Muslim Brotherhood, while IS is related to a radical current close to al-Qaeda. The latter had created other groups that were also incompatible with Hamas in terms of Sharia interpretation and political ideas.

- IS’ creation was inspired by Saudi Arabian Wahhabism. This extremist, radical ideology is the foundation of al-Qaeda and all its branches, including IS. The beliefs of IS are no different from the ideas, beliefs and actions of Saudi Arabia, except when it comes to armed jihad.

5. The Concept Of Jihad

’IS’ is fighting everyone!

For Hamas, the concept of jihad is limited to resistance against the Israeli occupation in the Palestinian territories. It does not fight the Jews because of their religion, but because they are occupying Palestine. Also, Hamas does not adopt the practice of beheading Israeli soldiers and settlers, as it believes that mutilating bodies is prohibited by Islam.

6. Summary

”IS has tarnished the image of Islam through its killings and beheadings that are broadcast on social media. This, in turn, has ruined the image of Islam in the eyes of both its followers and adversaries.”

* This text is mostly based on the article - expired link (before 2023-02-03) → islam,terrorism-and-jihad hamas,-is-share-neither-goal-nor-methods, Hamas, IS Share neither Goal nor Methods, by Adnan Abu Amer.

Other Links - Fatwas on ’ISIS/ IS’

[Fatwa 1]
xL =broken link 2020-10-03: http://binbayyah.net/english/2014/09/24/fatwa-response-to-isis