I try my best to do my prayers on time and would not miss any. Recently, i watched a youtube video by one of the Islamic lecturer from Saudi Arabia , quoting a hadith which i do not have knowledge to authenticate that if someone is not praying or missed prayers becomes KAFER or in the exacted quoted Hadith by Assim Al Hakeem that Muhammad SAW said that the only difference between Muslim and Non-muslim is 5 time prayers. If a Muslim does not pray, then he or she is not Muslim.

Can you please shed light on this issue. As i have missed couple of my prayers, does it mean that this mistake of missing prayers expelled me from my religion of islam? or Assim Al Hakeem is quoted not authenticated hadith and his words are nothing but hoax?

6 Answers 6


I guess you refer to this hadith which is quoted in Sunan ibn Majah, Sunan an-Nasa-i, Jami' at-Tirmidhi, Musnad Ahmad and Mustadrak al-Hakim:

Narrated Abdullah bin Buraidah narrated from his father: that the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said: "The covenant between us and them is the Salat, so whoever abandons it he has committed disbelief." (Also narrted on the authority of ibn 'Abbas and Anas.

In his sharh (commentary) of Sunan an-Nasa-i Imam as-Suyuti said: this is a castigation for the one who doesn't pray and an alarming for him, which says you are nearer to become a kafir than being a Muslim or that you may end up as a non-Muslim if you don't repent and pray. He also added a quote of Al-Bayahqi saying something like this could also be taken literally as not praying could be considered as a disbelief which should be punished by taking his life as Imam Ahmad concluded from this hadith taking it literally.

I remember that there was a discussion between Imam a-Shafi'i and Imam Ahmad on the matter where Imam a-Shafi'i could clearly show a contradiction in the argumentation of Imam Ahmad.

There's also an other stronger hadith which you may find in almost all Sunan collections and in Sahih Muslim with slightly different wordings:

It is narrated on the authority of Abu Zubair that he heard Jabir b. 'Abdullah saying. I heard the Messenger of Allah (may peace and blessings be upon him) observing this: Between man and polytheism and unbelief is the abandonment of salat.

So the prevalent view of the Hanbali school is that, somebody who doesn't pray is kafir. This is the opinion of Imam Ahamad, Imam ibn al-Mubarak, Ishaq and some of the students of a-Shafi'i.

While Imam Malik, a-Shafi'i and some of his students say such a person is not kafir, but fasiq and he should be asked to repent, so if he/she repents and prays the matter is closed and it's up to Allah to punish or forgive him in the hereafter. But if he/she didn't repent and insisted in not to pray he should be punished by taking his life.

Imam abu Hanifa and some other Kufi scholars and al-Muzni (student of a-Shafi'i) said he is neither considered as kafir nor should the authorities take his life, but he should be jailed until he prays.

And here's a fatwa defending the view of Imam Ahamad and the salafis saying it is the only correct view.

You could also take a look in this thread (in Arabic) who deals with the matter.

And Allah knows best!


All Praise to Allah Subhanahu wa Taala and blessings of Him be on Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him His family and companions,

Indeed, I am Allah . There is no deity except Me, so worship Me and establish prayer for My remembrance.(Quran 20:14)

As the answer is given above I want to add in that interesting discussion between Imam Shafai Rahmatullah alayh and Imam Hanbal Rahmatullah alayh when Imam Shafai (Ra) asked Imam Hanbal (Ra) "That in your opinion if a person becomes kafir by not reading the Salah then how that person would be able to become a Muslim, On that Imam Hanbal(Ra) replied back that in order to become a Muslim he should Pray then Imam Shafai (Ra) replied "But the Prayer of the kafir is not considered as valid" ,On hearing that Imam Hanbal (Ra) was completely surprised."

Among hanafis if someone completely denies the Salah as part of the Islam(Obligation) then he would be out of fold of Islam (Kufr) other than that if it is due to laziness then he would be considered as religiously corrupt (Fisq).

See also this.

Allah swt and His Messenger knows best.


If someone does not pray because of ideological reasons, thinking that prayer is not necessary, then he is a Kafir. Because the obligation of prayer is proven from the Quran and Sunnah and Ijma' and denying that is Kufr.

وأما تارك الصلاة فإن كان منكرا لوجوبها فهو كافر بإجماع المسلمين

As for one who abandons Salah if he denies its obligation then he is a Kafir by the consensus of the Muslims

Sharah Nawawi

However, if someone does not pray because of laziness, while acknowledging its obligation: Then there is a well known difference of opinion among the madhabs on whether that person becomes a Kafir.

Some madhabs have held that not praying is always Kufr and have relied on the apparent meaning of the ahadith such as:

بين الرجل وبين الشرك والكفر ترك الصلاة

Between a man and Shirk and Kufr there stands his giving up the Salat


While other madhabs hold that neglect because of laziness is not Kufr by itself. They have understood ahadith such as the above to mean abandonment by denial. Among the evidence for this position is the hadith:

خمس صلوات كتبهن الله على العباد فمن جاء بهن لم يضيع منهن شيئا استخفافا بحقهن كان له عند الله عهد أن يدخله الجنة ومن لم يأت بهن فليس له عند الله عهد إن شاء عذبه وإن شاء أدخله الجنة

There are five prayers which Allah has prescribed on His servants. If anyone offers them, not losing any of them, and not treating them lightly, Allah guarantees that He will admit him to Paradise. If anyone does not offer them, Allah does not take any responsibility for such a person. He may either punish him or admit him to Paradise.

Abu Dawud

Because this hadith proves that a person who neglects prayer can be forgiven by Allah and enter paradise. Which implies that he remains a Muslim as Allah will never forgive shirk and kufr (4:48, 4:168).


According to Islamic teachings, consistently neglecting the five daily prayers without a valid reason is considered a major sin. However, it does not automatically classify a person as a disbeliever (kafir).

In the Qur'an, Allah emphasizes the importance of prayer in multiple verses. For example, in Surah Al-Mu'minun (23:1-2), Allah says:

"Successful indeed are the believers, those who offer their prayers with humility and attentiveness."

This verse highlights the significance of prayer for believers, indicating that it is an essential aspect of faith.

Regarding the punishment for abandoning prayer, there are various hadiths that mention severe consequences for neglecting this obligation. For instance, the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said in a hadith narrated by Abu Dawood:

"Between a person and disbelief is abandoning the prayer. Whoever abandons it has committed disbelief."

However, it is important to understand that scholars have different interpretations of this hadith. Some scholars consider it as a severe warning, while others interpret it as a severe sin but not disbelief. Ultimately, the classification of a person as a disbeliever is a matter for Allah to decide.

Therefore, while neglecting the five daily prayers is a grave sin, it does not automatically render a person as a disbeliever. It is essential to encourage and remind individuals to fulfill their prayer obligations, while also seeking Allah's forgiveness and guidance for ourselves and others.


In my opinion fatwa of imam shafae is more correct If the person neglect prayers out of lazyness then he is corrupt muslim(fasiq)

How can i person become kafir if he has lot of faith in his heart and just missing one or two salat out of lazyness. In my opinion if someone neglect namaz then he is heavily sinfull corrupt muslim not kafir

And yes if someone denies that 5 times namaz is obligatory then he is kafir because he has denied one pillar of islam


Its not, to be a kafer you should make one thing regarding the missing prayer and its must important thing in Islam which is "Beliving that the paryer are not major work in Islam".

So you are Kafer when you belive in that!

One of my best resource in Arabic "تارك الصلاة"

  • This needs elaboration and doesn't really provide anything new to the given answers.
    – user23533
    Commented Jun 8, 2018 at 9:36
  • I'm respecting your opinion @Yas
    – Atef Mohd
    Commented Jun 9, 2018 at 16:34

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .