The Punishment of RAJM (Stoning to Death)

 

The word HADD (plural HUDOOD) is the punishment for a crime that is explicitly mentioned in the Holy Qur’an or the Sunnah of our beloved Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam).

The word TA’ZEER (plural TA’AZEER) is the punishment that is left to the discretion of the Judge (Qadi), and it literally means disgracing the criminal.

 

As far as the punishment of adultery is concerned, the first revelation on adultery merely spoke of the punishment of confining the women guilty of sexual offences to their homes until they died.  Allah says in the Glorious Qur’an:

 

AND THOSE OF YOUR WOMEN WHO COMMIT ILLEGAL SEXUAL INTERCOURSE, TAKE THE EVIDENCE OF FOUR (RELIABLE) WITNESSES FROM AMONGST YOU AGAINST THEM; AND IF THEY TESTIFY, CONFINE THEM TO HOUSES UNTIL DEATH COMES TO THEM, OR ALLAH ORDAINS FOR THEM SOME (OTHER) WAY. AND THE TWO PERSONS (MAN AND WOMAN) AMONG YOU, WHO COMMIT ILLEGAL SEXUAL INTERCOURSE, PUNISH THEM BOTH (literally HURT THEM BOTH). (Surah an-Nisaa: Chapter 4: Verses 15-16).

 

These verses of Surah An-Nisaa were revealed on various occasions after the battle of Uhud until the end of 4 A.H.  According to the chronological sequence of revelation, it is Surah No. 92.

 

From the above mentioned verses, the following facts emerge:

 

1.      In the beginning, the punishment for both man and woman was to “PUNISH” or “HURT” them both (FA-AADHOOHUMA) which included curse, verbal punishment and physical punishment. There was also an extra punishment for the woman which was to confine them to their homes (similar to the ahkam for pardah).

2.      Such a punishment was temporarily and therefore secondary. The proof can be read in the above-quoted verse “OR ALLAH ORDAINS FOR THEM SOME (OTHER) WAY.”

3.      The execution of this punishment rested with the society and not with the State.

4.      In 6 A.H, the “IFK” incident occurred i.e. the incident of the slander against Sayyidatuna A’isha (Radiyallahu anha) the wife of the Prophet. Because of this incident Surah Noor (Chapter 24) was revealed towards the end of 6 A.H. In this Surah, the punishment for adultery (Zina) was given. Allah says: “THE WOMAN AND THE MAN GUILTY OF SEXUAL INTERCOURSE FLOG EACH OF THEM WITH A HUNDRED STRIPES”. (Surah an-Noor: Chapter 24: Verse 2).

 

But this punishment was only for those who committed adultery (zina) when he/she was unmarried. The proof is the verse immediately following it: “THE ADULTERER MARRIES NOT BUT AN ADULTRESS OR A MUSHRIKAH (Female Polytheist); AND THE ADULTRESS MARRIES NONE EXCEPT AN ADULTERER OR A MUSHRIK (Polytheist). SUCH A THING IS FORBIDDEN TO THE BELIEVERS.” (Surah an-Noor: Chapter 24: Verse 3).

 

Therefore, the punishment which is stated in Surah an-Noor is only for unmarried men and women, and the argument put forth to support this view is as follows:

 

1. Marriage with those fornicator and fornicatress (Chapter 24: Verse No 3), whose punishment is mentioned in the verse immediately preceding it (Chapter 24: Verse No 2), is Haraam.  And this can only be possible if one is unmarried (because you can not marry an already married person).  This verse clears out the doubt.

2. It is only permissible for a fornicatress to marry a fornicator. If she is already married than this would mean that, after she has committed Zina, she will only be legal for the fornicator and not her husband (who in this case is innocent and has nothing to do with the crime).  This means that it is very profitable for the fornicator, while it is destroying her husband’s life.  And this is, in itself, against the Will of Allah.

 

Our claim becomes even stronger in the light of this verse of the Holy Qur’an: “AND WHOEVER OF YOU HAS NOT THE MEANS WHEREWITH TO WED FREE (UNMARRIED) BELIEVING WOMEN, THEY MAY WED BELIEVING GIRLS FROM AMONG THOSE (CAPTIVES AND SLAVES) WHOM YOUR RIGHT HANDS POSSESS. … AND AFTER THEY HAVE BEEN TAKEN IN WEDLOCK, IF THEY COMMIT ILLEGAL SEXUAL INTERCOURSE, THEIR PUNISHMENT IS HALF THAT OF FREE (UNMARRIED) WOMEN.

(Surah an-Nisaa: Chapter 4: Verse 25)


A FEMALE SLAVE’S PUNISHMENT FOR ADULTERY

 

If we ponder on this verse carefully, we see that the first time the word ”AL-MUHSANAAT” is used, it can not have any other meaning but  FREE (UNMARRIED) WOMEN to whom one is recommended to marry; and the second time the word “AL-MUHSANAAT” is used it can not have any other meaning except “FREE (UNMARRIED) WOMEN.”  And a free unmarried woman’s punishment is 100 lashes. From this one can extract that a married female slave’s punishment is the half of a free unmarried woman i.e. 50 lashes.

 

HALF THE PUNISHMENT OF RAJM

 

As the last-quoted verse (Chapter 4: Verse 25) gives the proof that the punishment mentioned in Surah an-Noor is only for free unmarried women, it also gives an answer to the Parwezi objection. The Parwezis claim that according to the Muslims, a married woman’s Hadd is Rajm (Stoning to death) and the married female slave’s Hadd is half of that of a free married woman i.e. Half Rajm; but Half Rajm is not possible. Therefore the Hadd mentioned in the Ahaadith is incorrect. The Parwezis say that the correct answer is that whether you are married or not married, the Hadd is still the same i.e. 100 lashes.

 

RESPONSE TO THEIR OBJECTION: Even though “MUHSANAAT” linguistically (LUGHATAN), can mean “free married woman”, the word is here interpreted and translated as “FREE (UNMARRIED) WOMEN”. Therefore the Hadd will be executed accordingly (i.e. half of 100 lashes = 50 lashes). And a married female slave’s Hadd is therefore half of an unmarried free woman. The Parwezis have played verbal gymnastics with the verse and claim that it means “free married woman” and uses this as an objection.  Anyway, this verse refutes Parwez’s objection.

 

HADD OF RAJM (STONING TO DEATH)

 

It is well known and obvious that a married man or woman’s Zina is a greater crime than a unmarried man’s or woman’s Zina.  There are different kinds of Zina and they are as follows:

1.      Zina committed by an unmarried man and woman. This kind of Zina was looked upon as a very bad thing but it was not enough to be punished for. Even by earlier civilizations, the punishment was milder.

2.      Zina committed by an unmarried man with a married woman; or Zina committed by an unmarried woman and a married man. This is called fornication.

3.      Zina committed by a married man and a married woman. This is called adultery.  This kind of Zina was looked upon as a greater crime even by former civilizations and laws. The authorities could go into such cases, and it was permissible for the parties to seek the courts in such instances.

 

Islam first of all put an end to those indecencies which led to such practices. In Surah al-Ahzaab (Chapter 33) which was chronologically revealed about a year before Surah an-Noor (Chapter 24), it is stated that the women must not show themselves in their pomp and circumstance in front of non-Mahram men. Their original place is the home, and they must therefore not practice “Jaahiliyyah” customs by leaving their homes displaying all their beauty.  And if they have to go out, they should cover themselves in a big cloak before leaving their homes. In Surah an-Noor (Chapter 24) where the Hadd of Zina is mentioned, further rules has been given to put an end to Zina.  The Qur’an has denounced the practice of earlier civilizations and laws and has fundamentally prescribed 100 lashes for an unmarried man or woman’s Zina.  At the same time, it has ordained that single men and women and male and female slaves should enter marriage, and has given some advantages of being married.

 

And for those who can not pay mahr (dowry) or maintain the woman, they have been ordered to stay “CHASTE”.

 

Allah says: “AND MARRY THOSE AMONG YOU WHO ARE SINGLE AND THE PIOUS OF YOUR (male) SLAVES AND MAID-SERVANTS (female-slaves).  IF THEY BE POOR, ALLAH WILL ENRICH THEM OUT OF HIS BOUNTY.  AND ALLAH IS ALL-SUFFICIENT FOR HIS CREATURES’ NEEDS, ALL-KNOWING.  AND LET THOSE WHO FIND NOT THE FINANCIAL MEANS FOR MARRIAGE, KEEP THEMSELVES CHASTE, UNTIL ALLAH ENRICHES THEM OF HIS BOUNTY.    (Surah al-Noor: Chapter 24: Verses 32-33).

 

It is obvious that even after all these laws and Hudood, there still is a great risk of an unmarried couple to commit Zina because they have no other means to satisfy there sexual desires. The Qur’an has therefore set the fundamental punishment of 100 lashes as a base for zina. If we look at zina committed by a married man and a married woman we can see that there are two things which make this crime more detestable than an unmarried man and unmarried woman’s Zina.

 

Firstly, they breach the marriage oath or pact. Secondly, they commit this crime even though they have a legal way to satisfy their sexual desires. Therefore their punishment should also be greater. Allah made the same law rule which is described in the Torah. And in the Qur’an we find hints to it. Allah says: O PEOPLE OF THE SCRIPTURE (Jews & Christians)! NOW HAS COME TO YOU OUR MESSENGER (i.e. Prophet Muhammad - sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) EXPLAINING TO YOU MUCH OF THAT WHICH YOU USED TO HIDE FROM THE SCRIPTURE AND PASSING OVER MUCH. INDEED, THERE HAS COME TO YOU FROM ALLAH A LIGHT (i.e. the Holy Prophet) AND A PLAIN BOOK.”  

(Surah al-Ma’idah: Chapter 5: Verse 15)

 

From this verse we understand that the People of the Scriptures had three kinds of laws:

 

1.      Those laws which the Jews practised. The Qur’an has not objected to these laws.

2. Those laws which they used to hide, either by removing it from their Book or by not revealing them to the people. The Qur’an has objected to such laws and these laws are of two categories:

a) Laws which they had hidden, and which the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) revealed. There were many such laws.

b) Laws which they had hidden and the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) did not bother with them. There were many such laws too.

3. The Laws which they openly confessed as the Laws of Torah were also of two kinds:

a) Those laws which were revealed through the Qur’an and which were also in the Torah.

b) Those laws which the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) revealed verbally saying that it was in their Torah, and which cannot be found in the Qur’an.  Rajm (Stoning to Death for Adultery) falls under this category.

 

Imam Bukhari (Rahimahullah) narrates in details about this issue.

 

RAJM FOR A JEWISH COUPLE

 

Narrated Ibn 'Umar (radiyallahu anhu):

A Jew and a Jewess were brought to Allah's Apostle on a charge of committing an illegal sexual intercourse. The Prophet asked them. "What is the legal punishment (for this sin) in your Book (Torah)?" They replied, "Our priests have innovated the punishment of blackening the faces with charcoal and Tajbiyah." 'Abdullah bin Salaam said, "O Allah's Apostle, tell them to bring the Torah." The Torah was brought, and then one of the Jews put his hand over the Divine Verse of the Rajm (stoning to death) and started reading what preceded and what followed it. On that, Ibn Salaam said to the Jew, "Lift up your hand." Behold! The Divine Verse of the Rajm was under his hand. So Allah's Apostle ordered that the two (sinners) be stoned to death, and so they were stoned. Ibn 'Umar added: So both of them were stoned at the Balaat and I saw the Jew sheltering the Jewess.

(Sahih Al-Bukhari: Volume 8, Book 82 (Kitab-ul-Muhaaribeen: Number 809).

 

Imam Bukhari (Rahimahullah) has put this Hadith under Kitabul Muharibeen instead of Kitabul Hudood. Imam Bukhari’s (Rahimahullah) ijtihaad (analogical deduction) was, that a married couple's Zina is not only a Zina but that it falls under (“those who fight Allah and His messenger”). Amongst the punishments which were prescribed for them is “YUQATTALOO” that one should put them in pain and kill them in a very harsh manner.  He used to understand Rajm as being one of these punishments. That is why he has put it under Kitabul Muharibeen. All other Hadith scholars have put it under Kitabul Hudood.

 

If we look at Muslim and Abu Dawood's narrations, the Hadith is quoted like this:

 

Al-Bara' b. 'Azib reported: There happened to pass by Allah's Apostle (may peace be upon him) a Jew blackened and lashed. Allah's Apostle (may peace be upon him) called them (the Jews) and said: Is this the punishment that you find in your Book (Torah) as a prescribed punishment for adultery? They said: Yes. He (the Holy Prophet) called one of the scholars amongst them and said: I ask you in the name of Allah Who sent down the Torah on Moses if that is the prescribed punishment for adultery that you find in your Book. He said: No. Had you not asked me in the name of Allah, I would not have given you this information. We find stoning to death (as punishment prescribed in the Torah). But this (crime) became quite common amongst our aristocratic class. So when we caught hold of any rich person (indulging in this offence) we spared him, but when we caught hold of a helpless person we imposed the prescribed punishment upon him. We then said: Let us agree (on a punishment) which we can inflict both upon the rich and the poor. So we decided to blacken the face with coal and flog as a substitute punishment for stoning. Thereupon Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) said: “O Allah, I am the first to revive Thy command when they had made it dead.” He then commanded and he (the offender) was stoned to death. Allah, the Majestic and Glorious, sent down (this verse): “O Messenger! (the behaviour of) those who vie with one another in denying the truth should not grieve you...” up to “is vouchsafed unto you, accept it.” (Surah al-Ma’idah: Chapter 4: Verse 41). It was said (by the Jews): Go to Muhammad; if he commands you to blacken the face and award flogging (as punishment for adultery), then accept it; but it he gives verdict for stoning to death, then do not accept it. It was (then) that Allah, the Majestic and Great, sent down (these verses):  And they who do not judge in accordance with what Allah has revealed are, indeed, deniers of the truth.” (Surah al-Ma’idah: Chapter 4: Verse 44); “And they who do not judge in accordance with what Allah has revealed-they, they indeed are the wrongdoers.” (Surah al-Ma’idah: Chapter 4: Verse 45); “And they who do not judge in accordance with what God has revealed-they are the iniquitous.” (Surah al-Ma’idah: Chapter 4: Verse 47). All these verses were revealed in connection with the non-believers.  (Sahih Muslim: Book 17; Kitabul-Hudood; Hadith No 4214).

 

Therefore the punishment of RAJM was carried out with the command of the Holy Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) and Surah Ma'idah Chapter 5 Verses 41-50 were revealed in connection with this incident of RAJM.

 

In Bukhari, Abdullah bin Salaam (radiyallahu anhu) is mentioned. In one of Muslim’s narrations Abdullah bin Salaam (radiyallahu anhu) is mentioned; and in another narration, two other scholars are mentioned. And in Abu Dawood’s narration, Abdullah bin Salaam (radiyallahu anhu) and Suraiya’s son is mentioned. This shows that the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) gave the verdict of stoning to death after getting at least two scholars of the Torah to bear witness to its truth. Now let us look at verse 41 of Chapter 5 were the RAJM incident is mentioned. “AND OF THE JEWS ARE MEN WHO LISTEN MUCH AND EAGERLY TO LIES – LISTEN TO OTHERS WHO HAVE NOT COME TO YOU. THEY CHANGE THE WORDS FROM THEIR PLACES; THEY SAY: “IF YOU ARE GIVEN THIS TAKE IT, BUT IF YOU ARE NOT GIVEN THIS, THEN BEWARE. (Surah al-Ma’idah: Chapter 5: Verse 41).

 

RAJM is not explicitly mentioned in the Qur’an, but it was clearly stated in the Torah, which the Jews used to hide. The Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) acted according to it as a “Munazzilum minallahi” (revealed by Allah) punishment.  Based on this law, the Prophet gave the order to stone the Jewish couple and chose the same punishment for Muslims who were married and committed Zina. It is about four or five incidents in which the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) ordered stoning to death (RAJM).  All six famous Hadith-collections (Sihah Sittah) contain so many records of these incidents from several sources which makes the RAJM punishment reach the level of Tawaatur (absolutely authentic), and can therefore not be denied.

 

IS RAJM CONTRADICTORY TO THE QUR’AN?

 

Most of the Modernist Deniers of Hadith always come with the objection that this punishment for adultery is against the Qur’an even though it is not.  There are four categories of people in society who become liable for punishment when committing Zina:

 

1. The fundamental and basic punishment for Zina lies in an unmarried man or woman’s Zina and the penalty is 100 lashes.  This has been explicitly mentioned in the Qur’an as quoted earlier.

2. A married male or female slave committing Zina. The Qur’an has ordained half the punishment of the original one i.e. 50 lashes. If they are unmarried there is no whipping, but a punishment (TA’ZEER) which is decided by the judge and this is not mentioned in the Qur’an.

3. If a man or woman accuses each other of Zina, it is called LI’AAN. There is no physical punishment for this. But one must swear an Oath by Allah four times, instead of producing four witnesses, for one’s truthfulness (SADAAQAH).  And the fifth time one has to curse the liar. After this, an irrevocable divorce becomes a reality.

4. The punishment for the married man or married woman has not been prescribed in the Qur’an but is mentioned in the Torah. The Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) accepted it as MIN (from) and ‘AN (on behalf of) and acted according to it.

 

When no objection from Allah was revealed against this judgement of the Holy Prophet, then it is a part of the Shari'ah and Book of Allah. There were certain minor things that were actioned by the Holy Prophet but which were against Allah’s Will. Therefore, revelation came immediately. For example, refusing attention for the blind man, exemption of Munafiqoon for battle, or to let the prisoners of the Battle of Badr go free by paying ransom.  If this decision of RAJM was against the Will of Allah, why was there no revelation from Allah disapproving this?  We do NOT find anything in the Holy Qur’an disapproving of the Holy Prophet’s decision of RAJM for married adulterers.

 

There were also certain customs amongst the Arabs which Islam took and they became a part of Shari’ah. For example, the fine for a human life was 100 camels; and Qasaamah (the judge decides on the entitlement for the blood-wit of the murdered after taking oaths from his relatives) in cases where the murderer was unknown. The Qur’an has said nothing about these customs that they were wrong. And the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) acted according to them and they therefore became a part of Shari’ah. Then how can one say that RAJM is against the Qur’an when it is revealed by Allah in one of the Heavenly Books i.e. the Torah?

 

THE REAL REASON FOR DENYING RAJM

 

The first group of Muslims to denied RAJM amongst the Hadith-deniers were the MU’TAZILITES. Their only reason was their hatred for the Hadith, but today another reason has been used as an excuse. And that reason is that the West finds these penalties to be so-called ‘barbaric’. Therefore, today’s Modern Hadith-deniers try to minimize these penalties to satisfy the West even if they have to give up their Islamic ideology.

As an example we can mention that the punishment for a man or woman thief is to cut off their hands. Linguistically (LUGHATAN) it means:

a) that it is for thief who steals even a cent;  or

b) it can also mean that his whole arm has to be cut off from the shoulder downwards; or

c) it can also mean that both his hands has to be cut off.

But in this case the Modern Hadith-deniers accept the Hadith which mentions the laws about theft without any objections. In TULU-E-ISLAM (October 1949 issue), Parwez wrote: “The punishments which are stated in the Qur’an are maximum penalties. Those who judge and give the verdict according to the Shari’ah are allowed to give punishments of lesser degree by taking the time, place and reason into consideration.” (Qurani Faislay: Page 165).

 

Now we may ask the question that if the judge is allowed to decrease or cancel the punishments which have been ordained in the Qur’an by taking the time, place and reason into consideration; then why do we call it HADD?  And Allah calls them Hudoodullah (Allah's punishments).  The only thing a judge can do in such cases is that he can examine the evidence but is never allowed to change the punishment ordained by Allah after the evidence has been found correct and sound. He can change TA’ZEER (not HADD) by taking the time, place and reason in consideration. If there is the slightest doubt in Hudood, the judge can stop the punishment but not decrease it.

 

A person wrote to Parwez and asked him if it was his own Ijtihaad, or if there was any other Ijtihaad made before his?  In his reply, Parwez write:

 

Punishment for theft:  

 

No, it is not our Ijtihaad. We find many examples in history. For example, the punishment for theft is the cutting of the hand. This is a maximum penalty which the Qur’an has ordained. How much he has stolen, and under which circumstances he has stolen, and when he will get the maximum penalty? And in which circumstances he will get a minor punishment? These are all mentioned and debated in Fiqh and Ahaadith and in the commentaries to these Ahaadith. In Bukhari and Muslim, it is stated that if you steal less than a Dinar one should not have the hand cut off. This is called NISAAB. By some it is a Dinar, and by some others, a quarter of a Dinar. This was concerning “how much” one steals. Lets us now look at the reason and the circumstances. A thief will not get his hands cut off unless he steals from “a safe place”. (Qurani Faislay: Page 166).

 

Thereafter, describing “a safe place” and under the heading “who do you call a thief” who steals from a safe place, he quotes a Hadith from Nisai, another Hadith with Umar’s (radiyallahu anhu) statement and another statement of Imam ibn Hazm as proof. And as a conclusion, he says "that wild animals that live on the mountains, if one takes any of them then he is not a thief. If a hungry person takes some fruit from someone’s garden then he is not a thief. If someone steals during the time of a drought, he is not a thief. Therefore the penalty of “cutting the hand” will not be implemented. Therefore the judge can take the nature and kind of theft into consideration and punish the thief accordingly."  (Qurani Faislay: Page 166).

 

We can now derive the following points from Parwez’s statements above:

 

1. When it is necessary to support his views, Parwez not only make use of Hadith but also uses historical facts to strengthen his arguments. He then bases his own ideology on these Ahaadith and historical facts. The amount stolen, the safe place, how much one has stolen and under which circumstances he has stolen are all correct according to him, even though nothing of this is mentioned in the Qur’an.  But Parwez is ignorant of the fact that he is trying to narrow the ahkam of the Qur’an instead.

2. All of which he has stated falls under “the principal of doubt” which does not prove the theft and therefore absolves the person of this punishment (HADD).  Such persons are not seen upon as thieves in Islam and therefore their hands will not be cut off. And if the evidence is found authentic and they point at the thief then the punishment (HADD) must be carried out and it can not be decreased or minimized. And if the person is not found guilty or it can not be proven that he is the thief, then there is no question of HADD.  In that case the judge can only give a minor punishment. Parwez should have given examples where the thief was found guilty of theft and it was proven that he was the thief, but the judge then had given a punishment of a lesser degree. Unfortunately, after all that verbal gymnastics, he could not come up with such an example. 

3. Because of the Hadith narrated by Nisai, and another Hadith with Umar’s (radiyallahu anhu) statement and the statements of Imam ibn Hazm and some of the Fuqaha, this gives Parwez an opportunity to get around such a “barbaric” punishment as the “cutting of the hand”.  Therefore in such cases, everything what they say is acceptable. But when the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) because of the severity of the crime, chooses this harsh punishment of RAJM, they start moaning that this punishment is contradicting the Qur’an. Is it not contrary to the Qur’an to allow stealing and plundering during drought? They do not moan about this but accept it with great satisfaction. Very wicked is what they decide. (Saa’a Maa Yahkumoon).

 

The Verse of Rajm

The Verse is Abrogated (Mansookh), but it’s Command remains:

 

The proof of the Verse of RAJM is in the following sermon which Umar (radiyallahu anhu) gave in the last days of his lifetime. He gave this khutbah in Masjid an-Nabawi on a Friday in front of a large Muslim congregation and this khutbah has been compiled by almost all the Muhaddithoon in their Hadith-collections.

 

The words of Sayyiduna Umar (radiyallahu anhu) which the Partwezis have an objection against are as follows:

'Umar sat on the pulpit and when the call maker for the prayer had finished his call, 'Umar stood up, and having glorified and praised Allah as He deserved, he said, "Now then, I am going to tell you something which (Allah) has written for me to say. I do not know; perhaps it portends my death, so whoever understands and remembers it, must narrate it to the others wherever his mount takes him, but if somebody is afraid that he does not understand it, then it is unlawful for him to tell lies about me. Allah sent Muhammad with the Truth and revealed the Holy Book to him, and among what Allah revealed, was the Verse of the Rajm (the stoning of married person (male or female) who commits illegal sexual intercourse, and we did recite this Verse and understood and memorized it.  Allah's Apostle did carry out the punishment of stoning and so did we after him.  I am afraid that after a long time has passed, somebody will say, 'By Allah, we do not find the Verse of Rajm in Allah's Book,' and thus they will go astray by leaving an obligation which Allah has revealed.  And the punishment of Rajm is to be inflicted to any married person (male or female), who commits illegal sexual intercourse, if the required evidence is available or if there is pregnancy or confession.   (Sahih Bukhari: Book 82; Kitabul-Muharibeen; Hadith No. 817).

 

Their objection is that if this verse was in the Qur’an then where is it?  (Qurani Faislay: Page182).

 

Our response is that it is abrogated (Mansookh). While the discussion on Nasikh and Mansookh is a separate chapter by itself, it will not be discussed here. In short, when Allah Himself says:

WE SHALL MAKE YOU TO RECITE (the Qur’an), SO YOU (O Prophet) SHALL NOT FORGET (it). EXCEPT WHAT ALLAH MAY WILL.  

(Surah al-A’laa: Chapter 87: Verses 6-7).

Then what right do these Modernist Parwezis have to object?

 

The next question they ask is that if this verse of RAJM is abrogated by way of recitation (Tilaawatan), than how can the Command in it still be valid?

 

Well, the reason why its Command is still valid is not because of this abrogated verse (Mansookh Tilaawatan Ayah), but because of the numerous authentic (Mutawaatir) Ahaadith. These Ahaadith tell us that there are only three cases when a person can be executed. It is Haraam to kill anyone except for three cases only, and they are:

1. To kill by stoning to death a married man or woman who has committed Zina.

2. To kill a murderer who kills another human being without any reason.

3. To kill an Apostate (Murtad) i.e. a Muslim who abandons the religion of Islam.

In these three cases, it is the responsibility of state, and not the people, to execute the punishment.  Or we can say that the proofs are the numerous authentic Ahaadith which are narrated concerning Zina and in which the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) gave the order of the punishment of RAJM.

 

CLEARANCE OF SOME DOUBT WHICH APPEAR AMONGST SOME MUSLIMS

 

There are some Muslims who sincerely take the Hadith as proof (Hujjah), but because of the influence of the Parwezi propaganda, begin to ponder that the Hadith in which the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) has ordered Rajm might have been before the revelation of Surah Noor (Chapter 24). This reasoning is not only baseless but incorrect.  Surah Noor (Chapter 24) was revealed 6 years after Hijrah and we have some incidents in the Ahaadith with authentic chain of narration and strong witnesses which indicate that Rajm was carried out after the revelation of Surah Noor (Chapter 24).  For example:

 

1. The Ghamdiya woman was stoned to death. Khalid bin Waleed stoned her and got some of her blood on his clothes and swore her. On this, the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) reprimanded him very severely. Now historically, it is an established fact that Khalid bin Waleed embraced Islam between the incidents of the Peace Treaty of al-Hudaybiyyah and the Conquest of Makkah in 8 A.H. Surah al-Fath (Chapter 48) was revealed when they were on their way back from Peace Treaty of al-Hudaybiyyah. Chronologically, Surah al-Fath (Chapter 48) was revealed as chapter number 111 whereas Surah an-Noor (Chapter 24) was revealed as chapter number 102. This means that the case of the Ghamdiya-woman took place long after the revelation of Surah an-Noor (Chapter 24).

2. In the case of Usaif or the servant boy, Sayyiduna Abu Hurairah (radiyallahu anhu) was present himself who is also the narrator of this Hadith. He says: “KUNNA INDAN NABIYYI (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam). (Sahih Bukhari: Kitabul Hudood: Baab I’tiraaf Biz Zina). In this case, the servant boy committed adultery with his master’s wife.  The servant boy's master’s wife was then stoned to death. Abu Hurairah embraced Islam at the Battle of Khaibar in 7 A.H. Surah an-Noor (Chapter 24) was revealed long before this.

3. When the Jewish couple was stoned to death, Abdullah bin Abi al-Harith was present. He narrates himself that he was amongst those who stoned. He embraced Islam after the Conquest of Makkah. (Sahih Bukhari: Baab ahkam ahludh Dhimmah Vol 12: Hadith No.144).

 

It is also worthwhile pondering that if all incidents of RAJM occurred before the revelation of Surah an-Noor, then the Sahabaas would have been well informed about these. But these Hudood of RAJM was carried out towards the end of the Prophet’s (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) lifetime and this was continued during the time of the Rightly Guided Caliphs. Sayyiduna Umar (Radiyallahu anhu) gave a speech in front of a big gathering of Sahabaas but none of them objected to it. From that day until today, there is Ijmaa’ (consensus) on it. Nobody denies this fact except the Hadith-deniers. But today, influenced by the Western culture and thought by saying that this punishment is “barbaric”, Ghulam Ahmad Parwez blows this subject out of proportion and calls the Hudood of the Shari’ah “a maximum punishment” which can be decreased to pacify the West.  And where they can find something in history which decreases this punishment of RAJM (which one can NEVER do with Hudoodullah) and falls within their own personal taste, they accept it very blindly.

 

May Allah guide us all to understand the Truth, and decipher it from the False ideologies.  Ameen!

Requesting your humble du’as.

 

Abdul Haq Abdul Kadir

Umhlanga Rocks, KZN, South Africa.

 

References:  The Noble Qur’an by Drs. Taqi-ud-Din Hilali and Muhsin Khan.

                      Books of Ahaadith (Sahih Al-Bukhari, Sahih Muslim, Abu Dawood).

                      Tulu-e-Islam Magazine of Parwez’s organization.

Qur’ani Faisley by Ghulam Ahmad Parwez.