The meaning of 'Faahishah' in the Quran
Fatwa No: 281254

  • Fatwa Date:27-1-2015 - Rabee' Al-Aakhir 7, 1436
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Question

salam alakom my question is that the word Fahisha IN 135 al imran . dose it consider as adualitry or adualtress.?or zinaaye mohsenh? thanks please explain it to me

Answer

All perfect praise be to Allaah, The Lord of the Worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allaah, and that Muhammad, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, is His slave and Messenager.

The scholars have assigned different interpretations to the word "Faahishah" in the words of Allaah (which mean): {And those who, when they commit an immorality (Faahishah) or wrong themselves, remember Allaah and seek forgiveness for their sins – and who can forgive sins except Allaah? – and [who] do not persist in what they have done while they know.} [Quran 3:135]

It was said that it refers to every kind of sin, and it was said that it is every major sin, and it was also said that it is Zina (fornication and adultery). At-Tabari reported in his Tafseer (interpretation of the Quran) from Jaabir  may  Allaah  be  pleased  with  him that it means Zina; this is what he reported as well from As-Suddy.

Al-Qurtubi said in his Tafseer: "Faahishah refers to every kind of sin, but it is mostly interpreted as referring to Zina, and in fact Jaabir ibn ‘Abdullaah and As-Suddy interpreted this verse as referring to Zina. And it was said that 'or' in Allaah's words 'or wrong themselves' means 'and', referring to sins other than the major sins." [End of quote]

Shaykh Al-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him said in Majmoo' al-Fataawa: "The words of Allaah (which mean): {And whoever does a wrong or wrongs himself} [Quran 4:110]; this implies conjoining the general to the specific, like in the words of Allaah (which mean): {And those who, when they commit an immorality (Faahishah) or wrong themselves, remember Allaah and seek forgiveness for their sins – and who can forgive sins except Allaah? – and [who] do not persist in what they have done while they know.} [Quran 3:135] It was said about the words of Allaah: {And those who, when they commit an immorality or wrong themselves...} that Faahishah means Zina, and it was said that it means any grave sin. The wronging of oneself that is mentioned along with it is also a grave sin; and it was said that it means minor sins. This corresponds to those who said that Faahishah means the major sin. So, the verse includes the minor sins and the major sins. Those who said that Faahishah means Zina say: wronging oneself includes all prohibitions. It was also said that Faahishah means Zina and wronging oneself means sins less than Zina, such as (unlawful) touching, kissing and hugging. It was also said that the latter actions are Faahishah while wronging oneself refers to other sins. It was further said: Faahishah refers to deeds while wronging oneself refers to words. To conclude, wronging oneself is a general term that includes every kind of sin." [End of quote]

He also said: "Wronging oneself includes Faahishah and other sins." [End of quote]

Allaah Knows best.

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