Surah An-Nisa >> Currently viewing Surah An-Nisa Ayat 15 (4:15)

Surah An-Nisa Ayat 15 in Arabic Text

وَٱلَّـٰتِى يَأْتِينَ ٱلْفَـٰحِشَةَ مِن نِّسَآئِكُمْ فَٱسْتَشْهِدُوا۟ عَلَيْهِنَّ أَرْبَعَةًۭ مِّنكُمْ ۖ فَإِن شَهِدُوا۟ فَأَمْسِكُوهُنَّ فِى ٱلْبُيُوتِ حَتَّىٰ يَتَوَفَّىٰهُنَّ ٱلْمَوْتُ أَوْ يَجْعَلَ ٱللَّهُ لَهُنَّ سَبِيلًۭا
Wallaatee ya’teenal faahishata min nisaaa’ikum fastash-hidoo ‘alaihinna arba’atam minkum fa in shahidoo fa amsikoohunna fil buyooti hatta yatawaffaa hunnal mawtu aw yaj’alal laahu lahunna sabeelaa

English Translation

Here you can read various translations of verse 15

Sahih International
Those who commit unlawful sexual intercourse of your women – bring against them four [witnesses] from among you. And if they testify, confine the guilty women to houses until death takes them or Allah ordains for them [another] way.

Yusuf Ali
If any of your women are guilty of lewdness, Take the evidence of four (Reliable) witnesses from amongst you against them; and if they testify, confine them to houses until death do claim them, or Allah ordain for them some (other) way.

Abul Ala Maududi
As for those of your women who are guilty of immoral conduct, call upon four from amongst you to bear witness against them. And if four men do bear witness, confine those women to their houses until either death takes them away or Allah opens some way for them.

Muhsin Khan
And those of your women who commit illegal sexual intercourse, take the evidence of four witnesses from amongst you against them; and if they testify, confine them (i.e. women) to houses until death comes to them or Allah ordains for them some (other) way.

Pickthall
As for those of your women who are guilty of lewdness, call to witness four of you against them. And if they testify (to the truth of the allegation) then confine them to the houses until death take them or (until) Allah appoint for them a way (through new legislation).

Dr. Ghali
And (as for) the ones of your women who come up with the obscenity, (i.e., illegal sexual intercourse; abomination) so, call four of you to witness against them. Then in case they (bear) witness, then retain them (The pronoun is the feminine plural) in the homes until death takes them up, (i.e., they die) or Allah sets for them a way.

Abdul Haleem
If any of your women commit a lewd act, call four witnesses from among you, then, if they testify to their guilt, keep the women at home until death comes to them or until God shows them another way.

Quran 4 Verse 15 Explanation

For those looking for commentary to help with the understanding of Surah An-Nisa ayat 15, we’ve provided two Tafseer works below. The first is the tafseer of Abul Ala Maududi, the second is of Ibn Kathir.

Ala-Maududi

(4:15) As for those of your women who are guilty of immoral conduct, call upon four from amongst you to bear witness against them. And if four men do bear witness, confine those women to their houses until either death takes them away or Allah opens some way for them.


There is no commentary by Abul Maududi available for this verse.

Ibn-Kathir

15. And those of your women who commit illegal sexual intercourse, take the evidence of four witnesses from among you against them; and if they testify, confine them (i.e. women) to houses until death comes to them or Allah ordains for them some (other) way. 16. And the two persons among you who commit illegal sexual intercourse, punish them both. And if they repent and do righteous good deeds, leave them alone. Surely, Allah is Ever the One Who accepts repentance, (and He is) Most Merciful.


The Adulteress is Confined in her House; A Command Later Abrogated

At the begining of Islam, the ruling was that if a woman commits adultery as stipulated by sufficient proof, she was confined to her home, without leave, until she died. Allah said,

﴿وَاللَـتِى يَأْتِينَ الْفَـحِشَةَ﴾

يعني الزنا

﴿مِن نِّسَآئِكُمْ فَاسْتَشْهِدُواْ عَلَيْهِنَّ أَرْبَعةً مِّنْكُمْ فَإِن شَهِدُواْ فَأَمْسِكُوهُنَّ فِى الْبُيُوتِ حَتَّى يَتَوَفَّاهُنَّ الْمَوْتُ أَوْ يَجْعَلَ اللَّهُ لَهُنَّ سَبِيلاً﴾

(And those of your women who commit illegal sexual intercourse, take the evidence of four witnesses from among you against them; and if they testify, confine them (i.e. women) to houses until death comes to them or Allah ordains for them some (other) way.) `Some other way’ mentioned here is the abrogation of this ruling that came later. Ibn `Abbas said, “The early ruling was confinement, until Allah sent down Surat An-Nur (chapter 24) which abrogated that ruling with the ruling of flogging (for fornication) or stoning to death (for adultery).” Similar was reported from `Ikrimah, Sa`id bin Jubayr, Al-Hasan, `Ata’ Al-Khurasani, Abu Salih, Qatadah, Zayd bin Aslam and Ad-Dahhak, and this is a matter that is agreed upon. Imam Ahmad recorded that `Ubadah bin As-Samit said, “When the revelation descended upon the Messenger of Allah , it would affect him and his face would show signs of strain. One day, Allah sent down a revelation to him, and when the Messenger was relieved of its strain, he said,

«خُذُوا عَنِّي، قَدْ جَعَلَ اللهُ لَهُنَّ سَبِيلًا، الثَّيِّبُ بِالثَّيِّبِ، وَالْبِكْرُ بِالْبِكْرِ، الثَّــيِّبُ جَلْدُ مِائَةٍ، وَرَجْمٌ بِالْحِجَارَةِ، وَالْبِكْرُ جَلْدُ مِائَةٍ ثُمَّ نَفْيُ سَنَة»

(Take from me: Allah has made some other way for them. The married with the married, the unmarried with the unmarried. The married gets a hundred lashes and stoning to death, while the unmarried gets a hundred lashes then banishment for a year.)” Muslim and the collectors of the Sunan recorded that `Ubadah bin As-Samit said that the Prophet said,

«خُذُوا عَنِّي خُذُوا عَنِّي، قَدْ جَعَلَ اللهُ لَهُنَّ سَبِيلًا، الْبِكْرُ بِالْبِكْرِ جَلْدُ مِائَةٍ وَتَغْرِيبُ عَامٍ، وَالثَّيِّبُ بِالثَّيِّبِ جَلْدُ مِائَةٍ وَالرَّجْم»

(Take from me, take from me. Allah has made some other way for them: the (unmarried) gets a hundred lashes and banishment for one year, while the (married) gets a hundred lashes and stoning to death.) At-Tirmidhi said, “Hasan Sahih”. Allah said,

﴿وَاللَّذَانَ يَأْتِيَـنِهَا مِنكُمْ فَـَاذُوهُمَا﴾

(And the two persons among you who commit illegal sexual intercourse, punish them both.) Ibn `Abbas and Sa`id bin Jubayr said that this punishment includes cursing, shaming them and beating them with sandals. This was the ruling until Allah abrogated it with flogging or stoning, as we stated. Mujahid said, “It was revealed about the case of two men who do it.” As if he was referring to the actions of the people of Lut, and Allah knows best. The collectors of Sunan recorded that Ibn `Abbas said that the Messenger of Allah said,

«مَنْ رَأَيْتُمُوهُ يَعْمَلُ عَمَلَ قَوْمِ لُوطٍ، فَاقْتُلُوا الْفَاعِلَ وَالْمَفْعُولَ بِه»

(Whoever you catch committing the act of the people of Lut (homosexuality), then kill both parties to the act.) Allah said,

﴿فَإِن تَابَا وَأَصْلَحَا﴾

(And if they repent and do righteous good deeds), by refraining from that evil act, and thereafter their actions become righteous,

﴿فَأَعْرِضُواْ عَنْهُمَآ﴾

(leave them alone), do not verbally abuse them after that, since he who truly repents is just like he who has no sin,

﴿إِنَّ اللَّهَ كَانَ تَوَّاباً رَّحِيماً﴾

(Surely, Allah is Ever the One Who accepts repentance, Most Merciful.) The following is recorded in the Two Sahihs:

«إِذَا زَنَتْ أَمَةُ أَحَدِكُمْ، فَلْيَجْلِدْهَا الْحَدَّ، وَلَا يُثَرِّبْ عَلَيْهَا»

(When the slave-girl of one of you commits illegal sexual intercouse, let him flog her and not chastise her afterwards. ) because the lashes she receives erase the sin that she has committed.

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