Lessons from Holy Qur'an

Islamic Punishments

Lesson # 621 From Holy Qur’aan

Islamic Punishments

‘Al-Maaa-‘idah (the Table Spread) – Chapter – 5)–Stage – 2

Verse – 40 of 120, Section – 6 of 16 (Part – 6)


In the name of Allaah, the Beneficent, the Merciful

Knowest thou not that unto Allaah belongeth the Sovereignty of the heavens and the earth? He punisheth whom He will, and forgiveth whom He will. And Allaah is Able to do all things.                       ‘Alam  ta’-lam  ‘annAllaaha  lahuu  mulkus-samaawaati  wal-‘arz.  Yu-‘azzibu  many-yashaaa-‘u  wa  yagfiru  limany-yashaaa’.  WAllaahu  ‘alaa  kulli  shay-‘in  Qadiir.                        




The Punishments regarding some crimes i.e. murder, robbery and theft etc. were discussed in the previous lesson. It was possible that some stupid people think about these punishments that those are very severe, because everyone is not able to prove the punishment of any crime after understanding the badness of that crime completely. Apparently, he thinks “Alas! A hale and healthy person has been sentenced to death or cut off a very useful thing like one’s hand forever. Allaah Almighty already signified by telling His one attribute with every punishment. An intelligent person will understand immediately from it that God is Mighty and Wise also as He is Able to do all things i.e. He knows the fact of every crime and understands the quantity and limit of that loss which has to bear by the mankind and which disturbance becomes public in the world. And then He determines a suitable punishment of that particular crime, which conforms entirely according to quantity and limit of that particular sin. But it has been disclosed such matter very clearly in this verse for those unintelligent and imprudent people, who cannot view the end and the far results of any deed.


Allaah Almighty commands that without any doubt the human being is ignorant but “Can he not know only even that everything in the earth and heavens, whether that is small or big, up or down, present or absent, human or beastly, angelus or belongs to demons, is in the Sovereignty of Allaah Almighty. Not only He possesses but He is Owner also of everything and manages the entire universe. He Orders, what He wills, punishes, to whom He wishes and forgives to whom He desires. Nothing is out of His control. He knows everything and deals properly.


The person, who will understand this verse thoroughly, can never criticize any command of Allaah Almighty. No doubt can take place in one’s heart upon being His order as correct and proper. Wonderful! We accept this rule regarding human being, that the owner of anything can do, what he wants to do with the thing, which is in his ownership, but forget entirely this principle in the case of Allaah Almighty.


Islamic Punishments

Some people have unbecoming thoughts about the punishments illustrated in the Holy Qur’aan. Keeping the Non-Muslims, particularly Europeans a side, the Muslims themselves have been involved in doubts about these punishments and are constantly thinking to amend them. Usually the imaginations like this have been born because we have taken the Islam as a very cursive thing. First thing, which we should understand about it is that Islam is not an invention of any mankind. Islam has been made by Him, Who is Creator of humankind.


For us, the collection of God’s Commands is Holy Quran and It has been conveyed through the last Messenger of Allaah Almighty, Muhammad (grace, glory, blessings and peace be upon Him). Its meanings have been made us to understand by the tongue as well as it has been shown us practically, how to act upon It.


It has been emphasized in the Holy Qur’aan that the Muslims should establish their collective dwelling in such a manner that anyone of them may not do such a deed due to which mutual cooperation takes bad effect. It means that everybody should try to escape from the evildoing in each condition due to the fear “If one committed any sin, then all the people would break off their all connections with one due to the command of Allaah Almighty and it would become difficult to dwell in the world for the one”. Whenever so much fear of society will take place in the heart of everybody, then it will be impossible for anyone to commit any crime. Wherever in the Holy Qur’aan, there is a command about punishment to someone, there, it has been admonished to the entire nation, “You should punish the criminal yourselves”. It appears that the aim from it is to terrify every person from the entire nation. Nobody has been given authority personally to punish anyone except the Messenger of Allaah Almighty (grace, glory, blessings and peace be upon Him).


At first, the nation should arrange such system of education that everyone is afraid from it with effect from the childhood and his/her heart falls back from the intentions of evil deeds and troubling others. He/she should have faith that “My nation pursues to remove the crimes from the world and it can punish anyone most severely for this purpose”. After that, surely none can intend to commit any crime. Along with it, everyone should know, “If I committed any crime, all the people will be separate from me and break off their connections”.


Whenever the nation will succeed in producing such atmosphere, then it is apparent that there will be no chance of tyrannizing anyone, and if any person is punished properly, then all others will never commit any crime or evil.


Second misunderstanding, in which those persons, who object, are involved, is that, these punishments will be given without making any distinction and the interested people will approach for their enmity and malice, whereas, it is fact that before punishing the criminal lawfully, the proof of the crime will be necessary to be obtained.


As far as the severe punishments concern, these punishments are for establishing the nobility/politeness of high standard and respect of law by the people of the nation. It is better to finish the crimes through severe punishments instead of making them (punishments) as the game of children. If one or two persons are punished severely, then other all people will never think to commit any kind of crime.


It should be remembered that only that society is authorized to give these punishments, whose organization has already finished nearly all the crimes.


Transliterated Holy Qur’an in Roman Script & Translated from Arabic to English by Marmaduke Pickthall, Published by Paak Company, 17-Urdu Bazar, Lahore, Lesson collected from Dars e Qur’an published By Idara Islaah wa Tableegh, Lahore (translated Urdu to English by Muhammad Sharif)