As-salaam wa-alaikum, brothers and sisters.
Today’s selection is from Surah 4, An-Nisâ or the Women, verses 15-23. These verses deal with the punishment for women found guilty of fornication (or sex outside of marriage). It deal with acceptable and unacceptable forms of repentance. It talks about the treatment of women in inheritance matters – that they are not to be viewed as belonging to anyone’s estate. It admonishes the believers from taking back a woman’s dowry. Lastly, there is a lengthy list of those women whom a believer is prohibited from marrying.
Bis-millahi ar-rahman, ar-raheem. In the name of Allah, most gracious, most merciful.
If any of your women are guilty of fornication, ask for four reliable witnesses from among yourselves against them; and if they testify and their guilt is proved, confine them to their houses until they die or Allah opens some other way out for them (Allah did open an other way. He abrogated these two verses through the verses of Sûrah An-Noor: 2-10). And the two, whether married or unmarried, who are guilty of this offense, punish them both. If they repent and mend their ways, leave them alone. Surely, Allah is the Accepter of Repentance, Merciful. 4:[15-16]
Repentance with Allah (right to be forgiven by Allah) is only for those who do something evil in ignorance and repent as soon as they realize it; Allah will pardon them. Allah is the Knowledgeable, Wise. There is no repentance for those who persist in their evil deeds until death approaches anyone of them and he says: “surely, now I repent.” Similarly, there is no repentance for those who die while they were still unbelievers; for them We have prepared a painful punishment. 4:[17-18]
O believers! It is not lawful for you to consider women as a part of your inheritance and retain them against their will in order that you may force them to give up a part of the dowry you have given them, unless they are guilty of proven fornication. Treat them with kindness even if you dislike them; it is quite possible that you dislike something in which Allah has placed much good. 4:
If you wish to marry another woman in place of the one you already have, do not take back anything of what you have given her even if it be a heap of gold. Would you take it back through slander and open sin (accusing her unjustly)? And how could you take it back when you have enjoyed conjugal happiness and she had taken from you a firm pledge of marriage? 4:[20- 21]
Do not marry those women whom your fathers had married, – except what happened prior to this commandment. – Surely, it was shameful, disgusting, and an evil practice. 4:
Forbidden to you for marriage are: your mothers, your daughters, your sisters, your paternal aunts, your maternal aunts, daughters of your brothers, daughters of your sisters, your foster-mothers, your foster-sisters, the mothers of your wives, your stepdaughters under your guardianship from those wives with whom you have consummated your marriage, but there is no blame on you in marrying your stepdaughters if you have not consummated your marriage with their mothers, whom you have divorced, and also forbidden are the wives of your own real sons; and to take two sisters in wedlock at the same time, except what happened prior to this commandment; surely, Allah is Forgiving, Merciful. 4:
This concludes today’s episode of the 17 Verses Podcast. I hope that this selection has helped increase your understanding of the holy Qur’an just a little bit.
Thank you and be well.