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April 8, 2011 / ghazwatulhind

Matter of Apostates in Islam

Question: And what about Muslims that want to leave Islam?


Leaving a religion is called “Apostasy” and is often considered an act for which penalty is nothing but death. To a point I also considered the same until I read what is view of Quran about this.  Read a very good article by Dr. Ahmed Shafaat over “Islamic PerspectivesTHE PUNISHMENT OF APOSTASY IN ISLAM“.

Read the Quranic verse which addresses apostasy and says:

Except those who join a group between you and whom there is a (peace-) treaty or those who approach you with their hearts restraining them from fighting you or fighting their own people. Had God willed he would have given them power over you and they would have fought you. So if they withdraw from you and do not fight you but give you (guarantees of) peace, then God has opened no way for you against them.

You will find others that wish to gain your confidence as well as that of their people. Every time they are sent back to temptation they give in to it. If they do not withdraw from you nor give you (guarantees) of peace, nor restrain their hands, seize them and kill them, wherever you find them. In their case We have provided you with a clear warrant against them. (4:90-91).

Apostasy in Islam is divided into 3 segments.

  1. Those who ally themselves with a group with whom Muslims have a peace treaty;
  2. Those who want to keep neutrality, committing themselves to peace with both the Muslims and their own people who had not accepted Islam;
  3. Those who provide no real guarantee of peace to Muslims and by all indications ally themselves with non-believers engaged in hostilities towards Islam.

The first two types of apostates are to be left in peace while the third one is to be treated like any non-believers in a state of war: they are to be seized and killed wherever they are found. Notice that the Qur`an uses the words “God has opened no way for you against them” in connection with the apostates of the first two types. This means that the Qur`an actually prohibits killing those apostates who want to live in peaceful terms with the Muslims.

Thus according to the Qur`an the apostates are to be treated like other kuffar: If they want to live in peace with the Muslims, they are to be left in peace and if they assume a hostile attitude, then they are to be treated accordingly.

As observed above the Qur`an expects us to deal with apostates like other kuffar. Therefore the Qur`anic guidance for dealing with the apostates is essentially the same as its guidance for dealing with other kuffar. Briefly, this guidance is that we should treat them according to the degree of friendship or hostility they show to Islam and Muslims.

Qurnic Verses which describe about apostasy also include:

2:17 They ask you about fighting in the sacred month. Say: “Fighting therein is a great (offence); but preventing (people) from following the way of God, denying him, preventing access to the Sacred Masjid, and driving out its people is a greater (offence) and al-fitnah (oppression) is worse than killing (in battle).” And they will not cease fighting you until they turn you back from your religion if they can. And if anyone among you turns back from his religion and dies as a disbeliever, then the works of such as these will be lost in this life and in the hereafter they will be the dwellers of the fire, abiding therein forever.

3:86 How shall God guide those who reject faith after their belief and after they bore witness that the Messenger was true and after clear (signs) had come unto them? God guides not unjust people.

3:87 They are those whose recompense is that on them (rests) the curse of God, of the angels, and of all humankind.

3:88 They will abide therein. Their torment will not be lightened and they will not be given any respite –

3:89 Except for those that repent after that, and make amends (by righteous deeds), for, verily God is forgiving, most merciful.

3:90 But surely those who disbelieved after their belief and then went on increasing in their disbelief, never will their repentance be accepted; for they are those who have gone astray.

4:137 Surely those who believe, then disbelieve, then believe (again) and (again) disbelieve, and go on increasing in disbelief, God will not forgive them nor guide them nor guide them on the way.

9:66 Make no excuses. You have disbelieved after your belief. If We pardon some of you, We (may) punish others amongst you, for they are guilty.

9:74 They swear by God that they did not say, but they did say the word of disbelief and they disbelieved after their islam and meditated a plot which they were unable to carry out. And (by this) they avenged nothing except that God and his Messenger had enriched them of his bounty! If they repent, it will be better for them; but if they turn away, God will punish them with a grievous penalty in this world and in the hereafter. And there is none for them on earth as a protector or helper.

16:106 Whoever disbelieved in God after his belief – not he who is forced to do so while his heart is content with faith but he who opens his breast to disbelief – on such wrath from God, and theirs will be a great torment.

16:107 This is because they loved the life of this world more than the hereafter and God does not guide those who disbelieve.

16:108 They are those upon whose hearts, ears, and eyes God has set a seal, and they are heedless.

16:109 No doubt, in the hereafter they will be losers.

47:25 Surely those who have turned back (to their state of kufr) after the guidance was made manifest to them, Shaytan has enticed them and filled them with false hopes.

47:26 This is because they said to those who hate what God has revealed: “We will obey you in part of the matter”. But God knows their secrets.

47:27 Then how (will it be) when the angels take their souls at death, smiting their faces and their backs?


  • Its clear that the one who leaves Islam and doesn’t fight Muslims back is not penalized or given any penalty by Muslims, his matter will stay with Allah alone.
  • It is also clear that the one who leaves Islam and joins the group of people who Muslims have a peace-treaty with, is at peace, his matter will stay with Allah alone.
  • The one who leaves Islam and starts conspiracies against Islam, becomes hostile and fights with Muslims then he is asked to be killed to stop fitna.  Such apostates are treated exactly the way as the one who did not accept Islam the first place and stayed Kafir but started conspiracies or becomes hostile against Muslims.  Such apostates are killed by law and their matter will also stay with Allah as well.

April 2, 2011 / ghazwatulhind

Matter of Disbelievers in Islam

[9:73] O you prophet, strive against the disbelievers and the hypocrites, and be stern in dealing with them. Their destiny is Hell; what a miserable abode!

[9:74] They swear by GOD that they never said it, although they have uttered the word of disbelief; they have disbelieved after becoming submitters. In fact, they gave up what they never had. They have rebelled even though GOD and His messenger have showered them with His grace and provisions. If they repent, it would be best for them. But if they turn away, GOD will commit them to painful retribution in this life and in the Hereafter. They will find no one on earth to be their lord and master.

[9:75] Some of them even pledged: “If GOD showered us with His grace, we would be charitable, and would lead a righteous life.”

[9:76] But when He did shower them with His provisions, they became stingy, and turned away in aversion.

[9:77] Consequently, He plagued them with hypocrisy in their hearts, till the day they meet Him. This is because they broke their promises to GOD, and because of their lying.

[9:78] Do they not realize that GOD knows their secrets, and their conspiracies, and that GOD is the Knower of all secrets?

[9:79] Those who criticize the generous believers for giving too much, and ridicule the poor believers for giving too little, GOD despises them. They have incurred a painful retribution.