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Section 19: Dealings with Orphans and Women

Equity to the interest of the orphans and women ordained -Reconciliation between husband and wife -Equity among wives, separation of man and wife - Carefulness about the duties enjoined

Surah An-Nisa', Verse 127

وَيَسْتَفْتُونَكَ فِي النِّسَاء قُلِ اللّهُ يُفْتِيكُمْ فِيهِنَّ وَمَا يُتْلَى عَلَيْكُمْ فِي الْكِتَابِ فِي يَتَامَى النِّسَاء الَّلاتِي لاَ تُؤْتُونَهُنَّ مَا كُتِبَ لَهُنَّ وَتَرْغَبُونَ أَن تَنكِحُوهُنَّ وَالْمُسْتَضْعَفِينَ مِنَ الْوِلْدَانِ وَأَن تَقُومُواْ لِلْيَتَامَى بِالْقِسْطِ وَمَا تَفْعَلُواْ مِنْ خَيْرٍ فَإِنَّ اللّهَ كَانَ بِهِ عَلِيمًا

127. "And they ask you for a pronouncement concerning women. Say: Allah pronounces to you concerning them, and what is recited to you in the Book concerning the orphan women to whom you do not give what is appointed for them, while you desire to marry them, and also (concerning) the oppressed children, and that you should deal towards orphans with equity, and whatever of good you do, verily Allah knows it."

In order to defend the rights of women and saving them, we should always follow the instructions of the heavenly leader.

"And they ask you for a pronouncement ..."

Mentioning the defence of women, children, and orphans beside each other in the Qur'an, is a sign of the existence of transgression against them through the length of the history. The support of Allah from the rights of women is an unchangeable pronouncement of Allah.

And, the responses of the Messenger of Allah are the same as the pronouncement of Allah.

".... Say: Allah pronounces to you concerning them...."

Justly treating the orphans is the best sample of the righteous work.

"…and whatever of good you do…"

The Islamic community should raise for establishing justice among orphans.

"... and that you should deal towards orphans with equity ..."

However, you should know that your services for, and your helps upon, the deprived in the society will not be neglected.

"…..verily Allah knows it'."

Surah An-Nisa', Verse 128

وَإِنِ امْرَأَةٌ خَافَتْ مِن بَعْلِهَا نُشُوزًا أَوْ إِعْرَاضًا فَلاَ جُنَاْحَ عَلَيْهِمَا أَن يُصْلِحَا بَيْنَهُمَا صُلْحًا وَالصُّلْحُ خَيْرٌ وَأُحْضِرَتِ الأَنفُسُ الشُّحَّ وَإِن تُحْسِنُواْ وَتَتَّقُواْ فَإِنَّ اللّهَ كَانَ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ خَبِيرًا

128. "And if a woman fears ill treatment from her husband, or desertion, there is no sin on the couple if they effect a reconciliation between them, and reconciliation is better but avarice has been made to be present in the (people's) minds, and if you do good and keep from evil, then verily Allah is aware of what you do."

It happened that at the beginning of Islam, a Muslim believer by the name of Rafi'-ibn-Khadij had got two wives. One of them was old and the other was young. He had to divorce the old wife because of some discords that they had.

But before ending the waiting period, he told her that if she desired he could revoke upon condition that she would be patient when he might prefer his young wife, else they should separate after finishing the waiting period. The woman accepted the reconciliation and then this verse was revealed.

The Arabic term /nusuz/ is derived from the root /nasz/ in the sense of: 'an elevated place', which, here, means: 'disobedience'. In verse No.34 from the current Surah, the speech was about the disobedience of the wife, and here the statement is also upon ill treatment.

The Arabic word /Suhh/, when concerning a wife, means: 'avoiding of wearing appropriate clothing and lack of ornamentation'; and when concerning a man, it refers to his avoidance of paying dower sum, necessaries, and the absence of showing affection.

In any case, for the family affairs, the first stage is reconciliation between the couple without the interference of others. If it does not end to peace, others may interfere:

"…if they effect reconciliation between them…"

And it does not matter for a person to remit a right in order to obtain a higher general interest and to make safe the atmosphere in the family.

"….there is no sin…"

The origin of instability in many families is the insularities, envy and avarice that have surrounded human-kind.

"… but avarice has been made to be present in the (people's) minds...."

Renunciation of man from his venereal desires and being careful of justice between his two wives, are among the examples of piety and kindness. If a man remits his own right, and does good and kindness unto his wife, all of these actions are at the presence of Allah.

"...then verily Allah is aware of what you do."

Surah An-Nisa', Verse 129

وَلَن تَسْتَطِيعُواْ أَن تَعْدِلُواْ بَيْنَ النِّسَاء وَلَوْ حَرَصْتُمْ فَلاَ تَمِيلُواْ كُلَّ الْمَيْلِ فَتَذَرُوهَا كَالْمُعَلَّقَةِ وَإِن تُصْلِحُواْ وَتَتَّقُواْ فَإِنَّ اللّهَ كَانَ غَفُورًا رَّحِيمًا

129. "You will never be able to deal equitably between (your) wives, however much you be eager (to do so); then do not incline with a total inclination (to one) so that you leave her as it were in suspense; and if you effect reconciliation and keep from evil, then verily Allah is Forgiving, Merciful."

Heavenly Law Has no Contradiction with Natural Disposition

It is natural that a man shows more affection to his young wife than his aged wife. That is why the commandment of Justice is only due to the treatment of man unto his wives, not due to his heartily love.

"You will never be able to deal equitably between (your) wives...."

Now that heartily justice is not possible, then, there should be equity in action.

In Islam, there is no duty beyond the ability of a person. A human being is not usually able to adjust affection, but he is able to apply justice in dealing the affairs.

It is unlawful for a man to leave his wife undecided.

"... then do not incline with a total inclination (to (one) so that you leave her as it were in suspense;

Through reconciliation and piety, both the former shortcomings and the unconscious negligence will be forgiven.

"... and if you effect reconciliation and keep from evil, then verily Allah is Forgiving, Merciful."

Surah An-Nisa', Verse 130

وَإِن يَتَفَرَّقَا يُغْنِ اللّهُ كُلاًّ مِّن سَعَتِهِ وَكَانَ اللّهُ وَاسِعًا حَكِيمًا

130."Yet if they (should) separate, Allah will enrich each out of His abundance, and Allah is All-Embracing, the Wise."

Next to the former discussion, in this verse it points to this fact that if he continuation of conjugal life is tiresome for the couple and there have come forth some things that the circumstance can never be remediable, they do not have to continue such a marriage and to be prisoner of a bitter family life like that.

They can separate from each other and, without having any fear from their future, they should decide bravely, because in this condition, if they separate, Allah will enrich both of them out of His abundance and Mercy. They can be hopeful to have better spouses and more delightful lives in future.

"Yet if they (should) separate, Allah will enrich each out of His abundance...."

This situation exists, because Allah has a vast inclusive Mercy and abundance, together with Wisdom. It says:

"... and Allah is All-Embracing, the Wise."

Surah An-Nisa', Verse 131

وَللّهِ مَا فِي السَّمَاوَاتِ وَمَا فِي الأَرْضِ وَلَقَدْ وَصَّيْنَا الَّذِينَ أُوتُواْ الْكِتَابَ مِن قَبْلِكُمْ وَإِيَّاكُمْ أَنِ اتَّقُواْ اللّهَ وَإِن تَكْفُرُواْ فَإِنَّ لِلّهِ مَا فِي السَّمَاوَاتِ وَمَا فِي الأَرْضِ وَكَانَ اللّهُ غَنِيًّا حَمِيدًا

131. "And to Allah belongs whatever is in the heavens and whatever is in the earth, and certainly We enjoined those who were given the Book before you, and you (too), that you should be in awe of Allah; and if you disbelieve, then, verily, to Allah belongs whatever is in the heavens and whatever is in the earth, and Allah is Self-Sufficient, Praiseworthy."

The Holy Qur'anic phrase: "And to Allah belongs whatever is in the heavens and whatever is in the earth...." has occurred two times in this verse and one time in the next verse. This repetition is because of its belief function, in order that we know Allah, the Almighty, is capable in performing His promises in all affairs, and that He enriches the servants (including enriching them in both marriage and divorce).

However, the Power and Sovereignty of Allah is the guarantee of execution for His promises.

"And to Allah belongs whatever is in the heavens and whatever is in the earth...."

Allah is Self-Sufficient, and having the possession of what is in the heavens and what is in the earth, He is in need of neither our worship nor our faith.

"…and Allah is Self-Sufficient, Praiseworthy."

Also, the One Who has Wisdom, Power, and Possession is rightful to have the authority of legislation and recommendation, too.

"And to Allah belongs whatever is in the heavens and whatever is in the earth, and certainly We enjoined those who were given the Book before you, and you (too), that you should be in awe of Allah; and if you disbelieve, then, verily, to Allah belongs whatever is in the heavens and whatever is in the earth, and Allah is Self-Sufficient, Praiseworthy."

Surah An-Nisa', Verse 132

وَلِلّهِ مَا فِي السَّمَاوَاتِ وَمَا فِي الأَرْضِ وَكَفَى بِاللّهِ وَكِيلاً

132. "And to Allah belongs whatever is in the heavens and whatever is in the earth, and Allah is sufficient as a Protector."

For the third time, it emphasizes in this verse that:

"And to Allah belongs whatever is in the heavens and whatever is in the earth…"

Then, it continues the statement denoting that He himself protects and runs them all. It says:

"And to Allah belongs whatever is in the heavens and whatever is in the earth, and Allah is sufficient as a Protector."

Surah An-Nisa', Verse 133

إِن يَشَأْ يُذْهِبْكُمْ أَيُّهَا النَّاسُ وَيَأْتِ بِآخَرِينَ وَكَانَ اللّهُ عَلَى ذَلِكَ قَدِيرًا

133. "If He pleases, He can remove you, O' people! and bring others; and Allah is powerful over that."

Next to the meaning in the previous verse, it continues to imply that it is no problem for Allah (s.w.t.) that He vanishes you and substitutes you some other people who will be more receptive and more decided in the path of His obedience. And Allah (s.w.t.) is powerful to accomplish this action. The holy verse says:

"If He pleases, He can remove you, O' people! and bring others; and Allah is powerful over that."

When this verse was revealed, the Messenger of Allah (S) struck his hand over the back of Salman Farsi and said:

"These people are Iranians (non-Arabs from Persia)." 1

Surah An-Nisa', Verse 134

مَّن كَانَ يُرِيدُ ثَوَابَ الدُّنْيَا فَعِندَ اللّهِ ثَوَابُ الدُّنْيَا وَالآخِرَةِ وَكَانَ اللّهُ سَمِيعًا بَصِيرًا

134. "Whoever desires the reward of this world, then with Allah is the reward of this world and the Hereafter and Allah is All-Hearing, All-Seeing."

There are some believers who can ask Allah the reward of this world and the reward of the coming world, and enjoy of the bounties of both lives. If they suffice only to this world, and pursue the material interests when accomplishing the Holy Struggle and righteous deeds, they are in a serious error. The Qur'an says:

"Whoever desires the reward of this world, then with Allah is the reward of this world and the Hereafter and Allah is All-Hearing, All-Seeing."
  • 1. Majma'-ul-Bayan, vol. 3, p. 122 (Arabic version)

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