Ruling On A Person Who Swore Three Times To Repent


I am a young man. I took oath more than three times to repent of a prohibited deed. Should I perform Kaffarah (expiation) for it once or three times and what is Kaffarah?


You should offer one Kaffarah which is feeding ten needy people, clothing them, or freeing a believing salve. If you are unable to do any of these things, you must fast for three days. Allah (Glorified be He) says:

َلَا يُؤَاخِذُكُمُ اللَّهُ بِاللَّغْوِ فِي أَيْمَانِكُمْ وَلَٰكِنْ يُؤَاخِذُكُمْ بِمَا عَقَّدْتُمُ الْأَيْمَانَ ۖ فَكَفَّارَتُهُ إِطْعَامُ عَشَرَةِ مَسَاكِينَ مِنْ أَوْسَطِ مَا تُطْعِمُونَ أَهْلِيكُمْ أَوْ كِسْوَتُهُمْ أَوْ تَحْرِيرُ رَقَبَةٍ ۖ فَمَنْ لَمْ يَجِدْ فَصِيَامُ ثَلَاثَةِ أَيَّامٍ ۚ ذَٰلِكَ كَفَّارَةُ أَيْمَانِكُمْ إِذَا حَلَفْتُمْ ۚ وَاحْفَظُوا أَيْمَانَكُمْ ۚ كَذَٰلِكَ يُبَيِّنُ اللَّهُ لَكُمْ آيَاتِهِ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَشْكُرُونَ ٩٨۝

 Allâh will not punish you for what is unintentional in your oaths, but He will punish you for your deliberate oaths; for its expiation feed ten Masâkîn (poor persons), on a scale of the average of that with which you feed your own families, or clothe them or manumit a slave. But whosoever cannot afford (that), then he should fast for three days. That is the expiation for the oaths when you have sworn. And protect your oaths (i.e. do not swear much). Thus does Allah make clear to you His communications, that you may be Fateful. (Suratul Má'idah: 89)

Thus, there is only one Kaffarah if one does not fulfill his oath to do an act or abandon an act, even if he repeats his oath several times unless he makes a Kaffarah for the first oath he breaks and then takes a second oath and breaks it, thus he has to make a second Kaffarah. Likewise, if he makes a third oath after making Kaffarah for the second oath, he has to make a third Kaffarah. However, if he makes several oaths for doing or abandoning several things; then he has to make a Kaffarah for each oath he breaks. For instance, if he makes an oath not to talk to so and so and not to eat from his food or not to travel to this place or said: "By Allah, I will not talk to so and so or hit so and so," in this case he has to make a Kaffarah for each oath he breaks. As for feeding, he should feed each poor person half a Sa (1 Sa=3 kg. approx.) of the staple food of your area. As for clothing, he should give each needy person a Qamis (long shirt) or Izar (garment worn below the waist) and Rida' (garment worn around the upper part of the body (that is suitable to wear while offering Salah (Prayer). If he gives each one of them a lunch or ɗin ner, this will be sufficient, based upon the generality of the Ayah (Qur'anic verse) mentioned above.

May Allah grant us success.

Fatawa of Shaykh Ibn Baaz and The Permanent Committee

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