Is abrogation present in the Quran? Are there any abrogated (mansukh) verses in the Quran? (mansukh) : “something that is (was) made invalid, something that is (was) changed.”

Details of the Question
Is abrogation present in the Quran? Are there any abrogated (mansukh) verses in the Quran? (mansukh) : “something that is (was) made invalid, something that is (was) changed.”
The Answer

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Is abrogation present in the Quran?

In order to answer this question, first of all we should take the Quran and, following it, the words of the Prophet, which are indeed the Quran’s explanations, into consideration to see what the Companions and Islamic scholars said on this issue and whether Islamic scholars agreed upon any abrogated verses or not. Now, we are going to try to find an answer to this question according this way. 

Verses about Abrogation (Naskh)

One of the most important resources that those who support the presence of abrogation in the Quran base their views on is that some verses mention abrogation. These verses are al-Baqarah, 106; an-Nahl, 101; ar-Ra’d, 39 and Aal-i-Imran, 7. [1] 

What is meant by these verses has been an issue of discussion and different views have been put forward according to those who accept the presence of abrogation in the Quran and to those who deny it. In this article, we are going to try to evaluate the topic by taking these different views into consideration. 

1. None of Our revelations do We abrogate or cause to be forgotten, but We substitute something better or similar: Knowest thou not that God Hath power over all things? (al-Baqarah, 106). 

We can summarize the evaluation of the abrogated verses mentioned in this verse as follows: 

a. It is the abrogation of previous rules. That is to say, what is meant by abrogated verses in the verse is some decrees of the previous rules. The verse previous to this one and the following verse support this view. Abu Muslim Isfahani, Hijazi, Jabri and Dogrul adopt this point of view. 

b. It is the change of qiblah. 

c. It is the change of miracles. The word “ayah” is also used for miracles in the Quran. Miracle mentioned in this verse can have this meaning, too. This view belongs to Abduh. 

d. They are the decrees pertaining to the Universe and living beings. The word “ayah” is also used to mean some beings such as the Moon and the Sun in the Quran. It is possible that the verse is about some extinct beings. Ali Mustafa supports this view about abrogation. The notion of “ayah” is usually used for the Quranic decrees in its plural meaning, and in its singular meaning, it is generally used for miracles, beings in the universe and exemplary lessons. 

e. They are the Quranic verses. Those who adopt this point of view state that it is the evaluation of notion of decree in the verse. That is to say, it means “When we abrogated the decree of a verse…” The majority of the Quran Interpreters have agreed upon this view. 

f. They are the decrees which were made forgotten. Suleyman Ates supports this view. 

g. It is the sending of a verse in Lawh al-Mahfuz (Preserved Tablet) down to the Prophet (naskh) and leaving it there (nasi). 

h. It is the reordering of verses within the surah. 

i. It states that abrogation and making something forgotten do not exist. Jabri considers this view possible. 

As it is seen, deduction that abrogation is present in the Quran is only one of the many other possible deductions. Moreover, the verse does not talk of abrogation of the decree of the verse, but the abrogation of the verse itself. 

2. When We substitute one revelation for another, - and God knows best what He reveals (in stages), - they say, "Thou art but a forger": but most of them understand not. (al-Nahl, 101) 

We can summarize the evaluation of this verse as follows: 

a. It is the reordering of the verses. 

b. It is the change of the prophethood and the rules of religion. 

c. It is the change of miracles; the replacement of Cosmic miracles by the Quranic ones. 

d. It is the change of decrees in the Quranic verses. 

e. It is emphasizing the unchangeableness of verses. 

As it is seen, the same thing is valid with this verse, too. It is difficult to conclude that abrogation is present in the Quran from this verse as well. The same thing is valid with the following verses, too. 

3. Allah doth blot out or confirm what He pleaseth: with Him is the Mother of the Book. (al-Ra’d, 39) 

The view that this verse is about the abrogation of the Quranic decrees is only one of the many views about the verse and it is not the one that one can think of right away in the first place. We can summarize these views together with their supporters as listed by Mawardi as follows: 

a. Allah changes whichever one of the acts of His servants as He wishes, except for happiness and wretchedness. (Ibn Abbas) 

b. Allah erases whatever He wishes and maintains whatever He wishes except for the Mother of the Book(s). (Ikrima) 

c. He abrogates whichever of the Book’s decrees He wishes and leaves whichever ones He wishes as they are. (Qatadah and Ibn Zaid). 

d. He erases the ones whose due time arrived and leaves the others as they are. (Hasan Basri) 

e. He forgives whichever sin of His servants’ He wishes and leaves the others as they are. (Said bin Jubair) 

f. The verse is about one who sins after worshipping and thus cancels his worship, and one who worships after sinning and thus cancels his sin. This view, which is attributed to Ibn Abbas again, is similar to the previous one. 

g. Allah erases physical and verbal deeds of people - which do not require any punishment or reward - which are delivered to Him by recording angels and leaves the ones which require punishment or reward as they are. (Dahhak) [2] 

These explanations make up of only one part of the scope of the verse in question. In our opinion, it is possible to add some others to them. For instance; changes occurring in the universe, destructions and reconstructions can also be thought to be included in the scope of the verse. Abrogation can also be thought of about that verse. However, we cannot claim that this abrogation is within the Quran itself. As a matter of fact, Jabri states that this verse was not evaluated like that by many scholars but it was interpreted as the change of religious rules compared to previous religious communities. Previous verses to this one point out to it, too. Therefore, what is meant by this verse is that a new book is sent down in every age in accordance with that age, and that the previous book is abrogated. The Bible (Gospel) abrogated the Torah, and the Quran abrogated the Bible. [3] 

Moreover, it is highly possible that this verse was sent before canonic verses about abrogation. The verses before and after that verse is not appropriate to deduce such meaning, either, because this surah often talks of idolaters’ objections to the Prophet and the previous verse to this one says: ““We did send messengers before thee, and appointed for them wives and children: and it was never the part of an apostle to bring a sign except as Allah permitted (or commanded). For each period is a Book (revealed).” This verse states that there is a due time for each duty of prophethood and that the Quran abrogates previous duties of prophethood. [4]

4. “He it is Who has sent down to thee the Book: In it are verses basic or fundamental (of established meaning); they are the foundation of the Book: others are allegorical.” (Aal-i-Imran, 7) 

The word “muhkamat” has been interpreted as “non-abrogated” verses and the word “mutashabihat” as abrogated verses, in the original Arabic text of the verse. However, this view, which is only one of the views on the verse, does not comply with the rest of the verse. We can summarize other important views on the issue as follows:

a. Muhkam are the things which are clearly stated to be forbidden or permissible by Allah and about which there are no doubts. And Mutashabih are things that are otherwise.

b. Muhkam are things so clear and obvious that it cannot bear any other meaning than its obvious meaning. And mutashabih are verses from which it is possible to deduce several meanings. This view belongs to Shafi’i and Muhammad bin Jafar az-Zubair and it is also preferred by Ibn Atiyya. We think that this view is the most appropriate one in terms of the verse’s meaning, coherence and unity.

c. Muhkam are verses which are not repeated and mutashabih are repeated verses.

d. Muhkam verses are fards (obligations) and promises. Mutashabih verses are anecdotes and examples.

e. Muhkam are the things the meaning of which scholars comprehend and know how to explain, and mutashabih are things which nobody else but Allah knows, such as the date and time of the Doomsday.

f. Muhkam are statements which do not need any evidence.

g. Mukhkam are the things the meanings, judgments, reasons and wisdom of which can be known with mind and reasoning, and mutashabih are the otherwise. [5]

As it is seen, there is not a clear indication of abrogation in this verse, either, like in other verses.

Especially, the reasons of revelation about the first two verses are not trustful enough to take into consideration for the explanation of the verse, for they are weak.


Secondly, we must research whether there is any explanation from the Prophet on this issue or not; because he has got knowledge of the issue and authorized to talk about it, for he is the Messenger of Allah. Therefore, it is natural that we expect him to have stated abrogated decrees – if there is any – saying the decree of such and such verse has been abrogated or such and such verse abrogated the decree of this or that verse.

The most significant evidence that there is not a hadith on this issue is that such hadith is not mentioned in many books about abrogation. If there was such a hadith, these books would have definitely mentioned it. Actually, Dogrul states that he searched 16 works including Kutub-i Sitta, basic hadith resources and maghazi (a discipline about wars of the Prophet) books and yet did not see such hadith. [6]

According to a narration in Ibn Shahin’s work on abrogation, Hazrat Ali heard the Prophet saying, “Allah abrogated sacrifice of animals, Ramadan fasting and all other fasts, taking full ablution because of impureness, zakat and all kinds of alms.” However, Ibn Shahin found this narration weird and investigators of the hadith explained that resources of disproof and modification determined Musayyab bin Shariq, to whom this hadith is attributed to, is someone whose hadiths are not acceptable. The hadith in question is denied in other resources, too. According to another narration by Ibn Shahin, Abdullah al-Mahzumi narrates it from Sufyan as follows: “Sacrifice of animals abrogated all other sacrifices. Zakat abrogates all other alms. And Ramadan abrogated all other fasts.” [7] This view is attributed to Dahhak and Abu Jafar in some resources and to Ibn Abbas in one. [8] Ibnu’l Arabi adds to this statement “Prayer (Salah) abrogated all other prayers.” [9] Some other narrations state it as “Zakat abrogated all kinds of alms; sacrifice of animals abrogated all other sacrificed animals and Ramadan fasting abrogated all other fasts.” [10] And Ibnu’l Jawzi narrates that Yazid bin Ga’ga said: “Decree of Zakat abrogated all previous alms and Ramadan fasting abrogated all previous fasts.” [11]

In short, it is impossible to consider this narration a hadith.

Şimşek states that it is possible to deduce from some narrations related from the Messenger of Allah (pbuh) that there is no abrogation within the Quran, and narrates a hadith which the Prophet addressed to some people who were debating on a verse [12]: “What is happening to you? People who lived before you were destroyed because they did the same as you are doing; they opposed to prophets and agreed with some parts of the Quran while disagreeing with the others. Verily, the Quran was sent down not with falsehoods in some parts and with truth in some parts, but all parts supporting and justifying each other. Do in accordance with the parts you understand, and leave the parts you do not understand to the ones who understand them.” [13] In our opinion, claims of abrogation in many verses are nothing but making verses conflict with and oppose to each other, just like told in this hadith. Therefore, unfortunately, what is told in this hadith has been practically recorded in some books.


While trying to find an answer to this question, one must thirdly take narrations by companions into consideration to see whether they said anything on the issue because they must have information about abrogated verses – if there is any - , for they lived in the same age when the Quran was sent down. Moreover, if they had said, “such and such verse was abrogated”, we can think that they heard it from the Prophet.

Companions and early scholars defined the specialization of a general meaning in a Quranic verse, determining the infinite meanings in a Quranic verse, explanation of hidden and concise meanings and even the exceptions as abrogation. [14]

When we look at the narrations by companions on the issue, we see that there are many narrations especially by Ibn Abbas. Let us try to understand it through some examples:

A- Narrations that are weakly, incorrectly or unsurely attributed to Ibn Abbas:

Some Israiliyyah beliefs and some views about abrogation were attributed to Ibn Abbas for he is a well-known hadith narrator. For instance, the view that the verse “Follow thou the inspiration sent unto thee, and be patient and constant, till God do decide: for He is the best to decide.” (Yunus 10:109) was abrogated is attributed to Ibn Abbas. However, Ibnu’l Jawzi states that the attribution of this narration to him is unsure. (Ibnu’l-Jawzi, Nawasikh, p. 181). Moreover, Makki says that attribution of the claim that the verse “Not mine is the responsibility for arranging your affairs” (al-An’am 66, Yunus 108) was abrogated to Ibn Abbas is weak and Ibnu’l-Jawzi says it is incorrect. [15]

B- Consideration of Exceptions as Abrogation

Ibn Abbas’ views related to exceptions to decrees have usually been understood as abrogation because he used not the notion of abrogation but exception while explaining such verses – as it will be pointed out when necessary - ; however, those explanations were evaluated as abrogation later. As a matter of fact, Makki says: “Many places in the Quran where the word “exception” is cited are narrated from Ibn Abbas as “abrogation…” [16]

“God give thee grace! Why didst thou grant them …?” (at-Tawbah, 43)  “Those who believe in God and the Last Day ask thee for no exemption.” (at-Tawbah, 44) “Only those who believe not in God and the Last Day ask thee for exemption.” (at-Tawbah, 45)

It is claimed that these three verses were abrogated by the verse “Only those are believers, who believe in God and His Apostle: when they are with him on a matter requiring collective action, they do not depart until they have asked for his leave; those who ask for thy leave are those who believe in God and His Apostle; so when they ask for thy leave, for some business of theirs, give leave to those of them whom thou wilt, and ask God for their forgiveness: for God is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” (an-Nur, 62) Two opposing views were narrated from Ibn Abbas, one being related to the abrogation of these verses and the other being related to the trustworthiness of it. [17]

 “…and say: "My Lord! Bestow on them thy Mercy even as they cherished me in childhood."” (al-Isra, 24).

It was said that the very supplication in this verse included supplications made for idolater (pagan) parents too and thus it had been abrogated by the verse “It is not fitting, for the Prophet and those who believe, that they should pray for forgiveness for Pagans.” (at-Tawbah, 113).

Ibn Abbas, after having read this verse, is claimed to have said: “then He made an exception and said ‘It is not fitting, for the Prophet and those who believe, that they should pray for forgiveness for Pagans.’” [18] While the word “exception” was used here – as stated before – it is obvious that it was understood as “abrogation”. In fact, the verse which was said to have invalidated the other limited that verse. [19]

Probably, it would be appropriate to evaluate views on many other similar verses attributed to Ibn Abbas this way because, there are many narrations like that. However, as stated above, as mentioned before and as it is going to be mentioned in examples later, views which were narrated from him about that kind of verses are originally exceptions and not abrogation.

C- Attributing Opposing Views to Ibn Abbas

Many views opposing to each other are often attributed to Ibn Abbas. For instance:

If a man kills a believer intentionally, his recompense is Hell, to abide therein (Forever): And the wrath and the curse of God are upon him, and a dreadful penalty is prepared for him.” (an-Nisa, 93). It is narrated from Ibn Abbas that this verse is one of the latest ones and thus it was not abrogated and a murderer’s repentance would not be accepted. However, at the same, it is narrated from him that – contrarily – this verse invalidated the verse about the acceptance of repentance in surah al-Fatiha because that verse was sent down in Makkah and this one was sent down in Madinah. Nahhas, who reported this view, stated that some scholars considered Ibn Abbas saying “invalidated” to mean “it was sent down with the same meaning.” [20]

“If the guardian is well-off, Let him claim no remuneration, but if he is poor, let him have for himself what is just and reasonable.” (al-Nisa, 6). [21]

As for this verse, four different views have been put forward about the guardian (of an orphan child) using the orphan child’s property justly and reasonably:

a. He uses it by borrowing from şt and then pays it back.

b. He uses it without wasting it and does not pay it back later.

c. In case of obligation, he uses it in the same way as he is allowed to eat a dead animal’s meat and then pays it back if he can, if he cannot, he does not.

d. The guardian can use orphan’s property in proportion to his working for the orphan.

According to all those views, the verse is trustful and there is no abrogation. However, some have stated that this was valid before and later it was invalidated with the verse “O ye who believe! Eat not up your property among yourselves in vanities.” (an-Nisa, 29). Besides, some have been too attentive to say, “in case of obligation, one is allowed to eat the meat of a dead animal, but not the property of orphans.” [22]

There are narrations reported from Ibn Abbas about all of the views on the decisiveness of the verse above. In addition to this, the narration that the verse was invalidated by the verse: “O ye who believe! Eat not up your property among yourselves in vanities” is also attributed to him. This is often witnessed in narrations related to abrogation. Sometimes, narrations which are in conflict with each other are narrated from Ibn Abbas, like in this example. Thus, it is necessary to approach this kind of narrations carefully.

News about Abrogation

The most well-known news about abrogation is the narration of Hazrat Ali reproving a story-teller, who does not know of abrogating and abrogated, “You destroyed both yourself and others!” , which is seen in almost all works written on abrogation. [23] Şimşek evaluates this narration as follows: This news cannot be evidence to the presence of abrogation in the Quran. We know that the knowledge of story-tellers of the time, who told people religious stories, came from Israiliyyah… Probably, this story-teller, too, mixed the Quranic narrations and narrations from the Torah and based his stories on the works of the People of the Book. So, Hazrat Ali stated with his words that the previous books were invalidated by the Quran. If not, what kind of a relation could there be between a story-teller and abrogation in the Quran? [24] And Dumlu, who approaches the abrogation in this narration doubtfully, says: “What was the topic? What was it that bothered Hazrat Ali; and does this event, which was understood as abrogation, have anything to do with the notion of abrogation which was created much later really?” [25] That the name of the story-teller in question was agreed upon to be Ka’bu’l-Akhbar, in the narration reported by Ibn Huzayma, justifies the doubts; because Ka’b, being a former Jewish scholar, was the leading one of those who told Israelite stories. This narration is as follows: Hazrat Ali comes across Kab’u’l-Akhbar, who was telling stories, and says to him: O father of Ishaq! This position (of sermonizing) belongs to amirs or appointed ones only. A few days after that, he came across him again and he was still telling stories. Some of the listeners had fainted and fallen down and some were crying. Upon seeing this, Hazrat Ali said: O father of Ishaq! Have I not prohibited you from this? Do you not know abrogation? And when he replied saying ‘Allahu a’lam (Allah knows the best)’, Hazrat Ali said: You destroyed both yourself and others! [26]

According to Jabri, this narration is a weak one from two aspects. First: It is reported by Dahhak from Ibn Abbas. However, Dahhak who died in the hijri year of 105 – according to Said bin Jubair – did not ever meet Ibn Abbas. And Ibn Hibban says one should always approach narrations reported by Dahhak doubtfully. Second: Story-tellers, telling religious stories in masjids had not appeared during the time of Hazrat Ali yet. They appeared only during the time of Umayyads. [27]

One of the news is the narration that Hazrat Umar said: “…Ubayy claims that he would not forget anything he heard from the Messenger of Allah. However, Allah the Great stated “If We abrogate a verse or make it forgotten…” [28] Şimşek evaluates this narration as follows: If this news reported by Bukhari is carefully investigated, it is evidence that there is no abrogation in the Quran, and not to the presence of abrogation in the Quran. According to this news, Hazrat Umar takes “abrogation” as making something forgotten and stresses that it is impossible for Ubayy to remember verses which Allah made forgotten.” [29]


What do scholars say about it? If they say that there are abrogated verses, what are they? Is there an agreement amongst them on the number of abrogated verses and on which ones they are? If there is, to what degree is that claim reasonable?

Abu Ubayd, Nahhas, Makki and Ibnu’l-Jawzi, widely investigated the issue of abrogation, evaluated the verses they included in their books one by one and denied the claim of abrogation in most of them. According to Sulaiman bin Ibrahim al-Lahim, who explained Nahhas’ book in detail, Nahhas and Ibnu’l-Jawzi concluded 17 verses were abrogated and Makki concluded that 28 verses were abrogated. [30]

However, the verses which these people said to be abrogated are different. That is to say, a verse which is accepted to be abrogated by one of them is said to be in effect by the other. Moreover, for they preferred to keep silent about some verses instead of telling their opinions; we cannot say the number of those verses is certain. Actually, we have noticed during our research that Ibnu’l-Jawzi’s determination of some verses as abrogated is not very appropriate. (al-Anfal, 65; al-Mumtahina, 10-11 and etc.) Moreover, we have also noticed that eight verses, which he considered to be abrogated quite probably, are not included in this categorization. Also, the number of the verses which were determined to be abrogated with the consensus of these three scholars seemed to be nine. (Amongst them are the 15th and 16th verses of surah an-Nisa, which follow and complete each other). However, we have noticed that it is not appropriate either at the end of our research. Let alone considering them abrogated, Makki did not include the verse Al-Baqarah 217 and Nassah did not include the verse al-Baqarah 240 in their books out of these nine verses. Therefore, the number of verses on which these three scholars agreed to be abrogated is only seven: al-Baqara 183, an-Nisa 15-16, 43, 90, al-Mujadilah 12, al-Muzzammil 2. (If the third and fourth verses of surah al-Mujadilah, following the second one, are added to this number, it is nine.) These seven verses are also included in the verses which some other scholars, who wrote books on abrogation in the past, considered to be abrogated.

Suyuti, a scholar who lived after them, stated that 21 verses which were said to be abrogated by the scholars before him are abrogated and then stated truth about the verses about asking for permission and the last day is that they were not abrogated and the 115th verse of surah al-Baqarah about the qiblah could be included among the abrogated ones. Thus, he increased the number to 20 eventually. [32] According to him, claims of abrogation about other verses except for these ones are incorrect.

The verses which Suyuti considered to be abrogated were repeated in the same way by other scholars or their number was decreased or the view of former scholars who increased the number of abrogated verses was adopted. For instance, Karmi followed the way of former scholars on the issue and Fahraddin Abdullah bin Muhammad repeated the verses, which were considered to be abrogated by Suyuti, in the same way in his book. [33] And Zarqani, who narrated from Suyuti added the verse about qiblah to the verses Suyuti considered to be abrogated, investigated 22 verses in total and stated that only ten of them were abrogated. Moreover, he said that the 16th verse of surah an-Nisa was also abrogated together with the 15th one, which Suyuti did not include among the abrogated verses. [34] These verses are: al-Baqarah 180,184, 240; an-Nisa 15-16, 33; al-Anfal 65; an-Nur 3; al-Ahzab 53; al-Mujadilah 12; al-Muzzammil, 2. [35] Subhi Salih stated that the number of verses which Suyuti considered to be abrogated would not be more than 10. [36] Dahlawi evaluated 21 verses which were also evaluated by Ibnu’l-Arabi and Suyuti, (except for the verse related to qiblah) and stated that only 5 of them were abrogated. These verses are: al-Baqarah 180, 240; al-Anfal 65; al-Ahzab 52; al-Mujadilah 12. [37] And Muhammad Salih Ali Mustafa accepted the presence of abrogation only in three of the verses (al-Anfal 65; al-Mujadilah 12; al-Muzzammil 2) and then put them in order according to the soundness of the abrogation possibility in them and stated their aspects both related to abrogation and firmness, including the three verses which he considered to be abrogated. [38]

Therefore, we see that when we expand the frame of scholars who accepted the presence of abrogation in the Quran, the number of the abrogated verses decreases in inverse proportion.

A remarkable point here is that the verse “Approach not prayers with a mind befogged (drunken/drugged)” (an-Nisa, 43) which is accepted as abrogated in books related to abrogation is not amongst the verses accepted to be abrogated by Suyuti and which he said “the claim of abrogation in any verses except for these is not true.” [39] Ibnu’l-Arabi says that the abrogation of this verse is not permissible at all and explains it as follows: Suggestion depends on the health of mind. Performing prayer is a requirement of being mukallaf (obliged to perform religious duties) and it is possible only if one’s mind is healthy. This verse was sent down in a time when drinking alcoholic beverages was mubah. When it was made haram, the prohibition in this verse still persevered, yet the scope of the prohibition was expanded to everywhere and all times. [40]

At the end of his research, Lahim stated that the number of verses which were likely to have been abrogated could be no more than nine; and yet he stated that he was sure of only five verses were abrogated in a chart he prepared, and that the others were firm. He stated that what could be abrogated in the verse about approaching prayers when befogged (an-Nisa, 43) was only the view that one could drink alcoholic beverages when they do not pray, and that the general meaning of the verse was steadfast. The other four verses which he considered to be abrogated are as follows: al-Baqarah, 184; al-Anfal, 65; al-Mujadilah, 12; al-Muzzammil, 2-4. [41]

At the end of his detailed research, Mustafa Zaid concluded that there were abrogations in 6 verses related to 6 incidents. These verses are as follows:

Related to fornication: an-Nisa, 15-16.

Related to alcohol: an-Nisa, 43.

Related to the number of Muslims related to victory in wars: al-Anfal, 65.

Related to najwa: al-Mujadilah, 12.

Related to Tahajjud prayer: al-Muzzammil, 2.

Ali Hasan al-Arid lists the verses which he considered to be abrogated in his book named Fathu’l Mannan fi Naskhi’l-Quran as follows:

Decrees related to fasting which were abrogated (invalidated) by the verse starting with, “Uhillat lakum…” (some things forbidden for fasting people).

Al-Anfal, 65th verse, which is related to the number of Muslims related to victories in which they will gain.

Related to fornication: an-Nisa, 15-16

Related to Nejwa, al-Mujadilah, 12.

Related to Tahajjud prayer, al-Muzzammil 2.

At the end of his research named “Kur'ân'da Nesih“ (Abrogation in the Quran), Kaya concluded that there was abrogation in verses al-Baqarah 240 and 280, an-Nisa 15, al-Mujadilah 12, and that al-Muzzammil 1-3 verses were in effect. [43]

After all of these views, when we expand the scope of our research and have a look at the verses which were stated to be abrogated by scholars, who accepted the presence of abrogated decrees in the Quran, we see that there is not a single verse upon which all of them agree to be abrogated!

Actually, Jabri states that he could not find a single verse upon which was agreed at the end of his research and eventually he published his research confidently, and that this issue was not one of the essentials of the religion and not related to creed, and that it was open to discussion. [44]

And some scholars state that most of the verses which were considered to be abrogated are indeed “delayed (munsa)” ones and they are going to be valid in due time. According to those who adopt this view, there is a reason why the abrogated verses are still in the text of the Quran and the decrees of these verses have not been totally abrogated. They are valid in a sense and have got fields of application. [45]

It is said that it was only Abu Muslim al-Isfahani who thought that there were not any abrogated verses in the Quran, in the past. However, Abu Ali Muhammad bin Ahmad bin Junaid states that he denies the presence of abrogation, in his work named al-Fash ala man Ajaza’n-Naskh. [46] The fact that Razi reported Isfahani’s views without any comments in his book “Tafsir al-i Kabir” is thought to mean that he supports Isfahani. [47]

In our time, as a result of efforts to decrease the number of verses which are considered to be abrogated, the view that there are not any abrogated verses in the Quran has started to be adopted generally and eventually the number of scholars who adopt this view has increased.


It is an accepted view by all Islamic scholars that decrees of the Quran invalidated some religious rules in the time of early prophets. Also, there has been abrogation in Islam about some issues such as changing of qiblah from Masjid al-Aqsa to Masjid al-Haram.

Although it is a disputable issue whether there is abrogation in the Quran, whether there are any abrogated decrees in the Quran or not, our reasearch shows that there is neither a certain verse and sunnah which states the presence of abrogation, nor an agreement upon it by scholars. 

Assist. Prof. Veysel GÜLLÜCE 


[1]. see. Zukhri, p. 15; Abu Ubayd, p. 5-6; Shatibi, III, 79. The verse “For the iniquity of the Jews We made unlawful for them certain (foods) good and wholesome which had been lawful for them" (an-Nisa, 160) was put forward as an evidence to the presence of abrogation. (see. Zarqani, II, 89; Ali Mustafa, p. 18).

[2] . Abu'l-Hasan Ali b. Muhammad al-Mawardi, an-Nukatu wa'l-Uyun (Tafiîru'l-Mawardi), Daru'l-Kutubi'l-Ilmiyya, Beirut, 1992, III, 118.

[3]. Jabri, La Naskha fi'l-Qur'ân, p. 24; an-Naskh, p. 194-195.

[4]. see. Şimşek, İki Mesele, p. 93 ff.; Günümüz Tefsîr Problemleri, p. 170-171

[5] . Mawardi, I, 370; Jabri, an-Naskh, p. 133.

[6] . Doğrul, s. L (from footnotes).

[7] . Abu Hafs Omar b. Ahmad b. Shahin, an-Nasikhu wa'l-Mansukh mina'l-Hadith, thq. Ali Muhammad Muawwid, Adil Ahmad Abdulmawjud, Daru'l-Kutubi'l-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 1992, p. 65.

[8] . see. Abu Ubayd, p.34; Nahhas, II, 323; III, 25; Makki, p. 182

[9] . see. Abu Bakr Ibnu'l-Arabi, Ahkamu'l-Qur'ân, Daru'l-Ma'rifa, Beirut, n.d., I, 11

[10] . see. Abu Ubayd, p.34.

[11] . Ibnu'l-Jawzi, Nawasikh, p. 42.

[12]. Şimşek, İki Mesele, p. 97; Günümüz Tefsîr Problemleri, p. 175.

[13]. Ibn Hanbal, Musnad, II, 181; for a similar narration, see: Ibn Majah, Muqaddima, 10.

[14] . Ali Hussain Muhammad Sulaiman, Fathu'r-Rahman fi Beyani'n-Naskh fi'l-Qur'an, p. 172

[15]. see. Makki, p. 181; Ibnu'l-Jawzi, Nawasikh, p. 154, 180.

[16] . Makki, p. 235.

[17] . see. Makki, p. 202.

[18] . Abu Ubayd, p. 403.

[19] . see. Tabari, VIII, 63; Makki, p. 214; Buzuri, v. 2b; Ibnu'l-Jawzi, Nawasikh, p. 191.

[20] . Nahhas, II, 225.

[21]. Zukhri, s. 18; Abu Ubayd, p.340; Nahhas, II, 146; Makki, p. 132; Buzuri, v. 2a; Ibnu'l-Jawzî, Nawasikh, s. 111; al-Musaffa, p. 21.

[22] . Ibnu'l-Jawzi, Nawasikh, p. 114.

[23]. See: Abu Ubayd, p. 3; Nahhas, I, 410; Hibatullah b. Salama b. Nasr al-Muqri. an-Nasikh wa'l-Mansukh min Kitabillahi Azzah wa Jallah. thq., Zuhair ash-Shawish-Muhammad Kan'an, al-Maktabu'l-Islami, Beirut, 1986, p. 18; Hamazani, p. 6 ; Ibnu'l-Jawzi, Nawasikh, p. 29.

[24]. Şimşek, İki Mesele, p. 94 ff.; Günümüz Tefsîr Problemleri, p. 174-175.

[25]. Dumlu, p. 81.

[26]. Ibn Huzayma, p. 261.

[27]. Jabri, an-Naskh, p. 118.

[28] . Bukhari, Tafsir, Surah 2, 7.

[29] . Simsek, Iki Mesele, p. 95.

[30] . see., Nahhas, I, 343-347.

[31] . al-Baqarah, 219; an-Nisa, 33; al-An'am, 106; al-Anfal, 72; al-Hijr, 94; an-Nur, 2; Saffat, 173; Qaf, 45.

[32] . Suyuti, al-Itqan, II, 712. We wrote the parts which Suyuti considered to be abrogated in these verses in bold.

[33] . Fahraddin Abdullah b. Muhammad, al-Beyan fi'n-Nasikh a'l-Mansukh fi'l-Qur'ân, yazma (Süleymaniye Kütüphanesi), v. 3-5.

[34] . That Suyuti did not consider the verse related to the punishment of those committed homosexuality as abrogated has been explained in the related verses.

 [35] . see. Zarqani, II, 153-165.

[36] . see: Subhi Salih, p. 274.

[37].Dahlawî, p. 54-59. When we examine Dahlawi’s explanations about these verses, we see that he stated that three of them (al-Baqarah 180; al-Anfal, 65; al-Mujadilah, 12) were definitely abrogated. His statement about other two verses is unclear (al-Baqarah, 240; al-Ahzâb, 52) However, as he later stated that five verses were abrogated, it is figured out that his view about these two verses was that they were abrogated. The following statements of Dahlawi were interpreted as his efforts to decrease this number: Almost there are not any verses the decrees of which have been abrogated (invalidated) in the Quran that we read. What is more, it is doubtless that its decree is valid for any situation or time.” (Ali Mustafa reported these statements from Yusuf Bannuri’s book named Yatimatu'l-Bayan fi Shay'in min Ulumi'l-Qur'an, yet, it is not stated from which of his books these statements of Dahlawi were quoted. see an-Naskh fi'l-Qur'ani'l-Karim, p. 40). Dahlawi’s statements about this issue in his book named  at-Tafhimu'l-Ilahiyya shows that he does not have a positive opinion about the presence of abrogation in the Quran. (see. Ahmad Hasan, ibid., p. 103 -nu: 4-).

[38] . Ali Mustafa, an-Naskh fi'l-Qur'ani'l-Karim, p. 41 ff.

[39] . ibid., Suyuti mentioned this verse in his work named al-Iklil; yet, he did not say anything about abrogation. (see p. 92-93).

[40] . Ibnu'l-Arabi, an-Nasikhu wa'l-Mansukh fi'l-Qur'ani'l-Karim, II, 173.

[41] . see. Nahhas, III, 395-398.

[42] . Ali Hasan al-Arid, Fathu'l-Mannan fi Naskhi'l-Qur'an, Maktabatu Hanci, Egypt, 1973, p. 340-341

[43] . see. Kaya, Kur'an'da Nesih, p. 164.

[44] . Jabri, an-Naskh, p. 117, 199.

[45] . see: Zarkashi, II, 49; also see. Suyuti, al-Itqan, II, 703; Jabri, an-Naskh, p. 24; Kashmiri, III, 147; Ömer Özsoy. "Nasr Hamid Ebu Zeyd'in Nass-Olgu Bağlamında Ulumu'l-Kur'ân'ı Eleştirisi", İslâmi Araştırmalar, v. VII, issue, 3-4, 1994, p. 244; Yıldırım, p. 104; Albayrak, Kur'ân'ın Bütünlüğü Üzerine, p. 36-37; Özdeş, ibid., p. 45; Dumlu, p. 85.

[46] . see. Şimşek, İki Mesele, p. 80.

[47]. see. Hudari, Tarikhu't-Tashri', p. 24; Ali Mustafa, an-Naskh fi'l-Qur'ani'l-Karim, p. 17.

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