Prohibitions in Islam - Page 25


Allah says (interpretation of the meaning): “Cut off (from the wrist joint) the (right) hand of the thief, male or female, as a recompense for that which they have committed, a punishment by way of example from Allah. And Allah is All-Powerful, All-Wise.” [Al- Ma’eda 5:38]

One of the worst forms of this sin is theft from the pilgrims who come on Hajj and ‘Umrah to the Ancient House of Allah. This kind of thief has no respect for the limits set by Allah in the best region on earth and around the House of Allah. In the report about Salaat Al-Kusoof (the eclipse prayer), it is reported that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “Hell was brought near, and that was when you saw me stepping backwards, because I feared that its heat would touch me. I saw there in the man with the crooked stick dragging his intestines in the Fire. He used to steal from the hujjaaj (pilgrims) with his crooked stick. If they spotted him, he would say ‘This got caught on my stick,’ and if they did not spot him, he would take whatever he had stolen”.

Another of the worst forms of theft is stealing from the public purse. Some of those who do this say “We are only doing what others do.” They do not realize that what they are doing is effectively stealing from all the Muslims, because the public purse belongs to all the Muslims. Imitating those who do not fear Allah is no excuse. Some people steal from the wealth of the kuffaar on the grounds that they are kuffaar, but this is wrong; the only kuffaar whose wealth we are allowed to take away are those who are actively fighting the Muslims, which does not apply to every kaafir individual or company. Another form of theft is pick-pocketing, stealing something from a person’s pocket without him realizing. Some thieves enter people’s houses as visitors, and steal from them. Some steal from their guests’ bags. Some - including women - go into stores and hide things in their pockets or under their clothing. Some think that the theft of small or cheap items is of little consequence, but the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “Allah has cursed the thief who steals an egg and has his hand cut off, and the thief who steals a rope and has his hand cut off.” (Reported by Al-Bukhari, see Fath Al-Bari, 12/81).

Everyone who steals something must first repent to Allah then return the item to its rightful owner, whether openly or secretly, in person or via a third party. If he fails to find the rightful owner or his heirs after much effort, then he should give the property in charity, with the intention that the reward should be given to the rightful owner.

Offering or accepting bribes

Giving a bribe to a qaadi or judge to make him turn a blind eye to the truth or to make a false claim succeed is a sin, because it leads to oppression and injustice for the person who is in the right, and it spreads corruption. Allah says (interpretation of the meaning): “And eat up not one another’s property unjustly, not give bribery to the rulers that you may knowingly eat up a part of the property of others sinfully.” [Al-Baqarah 2:188]

Abu Hurairah (may Allah be pleased with him) reported that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be

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