From the top answer to What does Islam say about homosexuality?, we have

The Sahaabah were unanimously agreed on the execution of homosexuals, but they differed as to how they were to be executed.

(although no reference was provided to support this claim). However, this is at odds with the following ahadith:

... Allah's Messenger (ﷺ) never killed anyone except in one of the following three situations: (1) A person who killed somebody unjustly, was killed (in Qisas,) (2) a married person who committed illegal sexual intercourse and (3) a man who fought against Allah and His Apostle and deserted Islam and became an apostate. ... -- Sahih al-Bukhari 6899 (sunnah.com)

... It is not permissible to shed the blood of a Muslim except in one of three cases: A man who reverts to Kufr after becoming Muslim, or commits adultery after being married, or one who kills a soul unlawfully. ... -- Sunan an-Nasa'i 4019 [grade: sahih] (sunnah.com)

They differ in that the first one lists who the Prophet killed, whereas the second one lists who the Prophet permitted killing. Nevertheless, both are sahih. However, there's an omission here... homosexuality.

Question: If homosexuality should result in execution, why is it not listed in ahadith as a reason to kill someone?

Given that homosexuality carries the death penalty in some Islamic countries*, I would expect there to be crystal clear evidence that the Prophet actually condoned this behavior.

* Washington Post, 2016, lists: Afghanistan, Iran, Mauritania, Nigeria, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Sudan, United Arab Emirates, Yemen

  • 1
    See e.g. this hadith: "Whoever you find doing as the people of Lot did (i.e. homosexuality), kill the one who does it and the one to whom it is done" - the parenthesis is commentary I think, but that'll be considered explicit by pretty much all scholars. You won't find a source that's as explicit as "if a man inserts his penis in the anus of another man, kill them". This doesn't address the question of "why isn't it listed in that hadith", so it doesn't really qualify as an answer.
    – G. Bach
    Jun 5, 2017 at 23:46

1 Answer 1


Homosexual intercourse is classed as Zina according to the Shafis and Hanafis1, and given the same Hadd as Zina, i.e lashes for the unmarried and Rajm (stoning to death) for the married.

Hence their execution comes under زَنَى بَعْدَ إِحْصَانٍ (Zina after being married) which the two hadith you quoted qualify as a valid cause for the death penalty.

From Hidayah (Hanafi):

or commits an act similar to the acts of the People of Lot, there is no hadd for him according to Abu Hanifah (God bless him), rather he is to be awarded ta`zir. The addition in al-Jami' al-Saghir is that he is to be imprisoned. The two jurists maintain that it is like zina, therefore, he is to be subjected to hadd, which is also one opinion from al-Shafi (God bless him). The two jurists argue that it carries the meaning of zina, because it is the satisfaction of lust through a location that is aroused in a manner that is completely a sexual act and invokes pure prohibition due to the intention of unlawfully spilling sperm.

From Minhaj Al Talibin (Shafi):

The crime of fornication consists in the introduction of the pénis into the vagina of a woman with whom one has no right of coition, without one being able to allège any cause of error. The crime is punishable with a definite penalty ; and this punishment is also applicable, according to our school, to whoever introduces his pénis into the podex of a man or of a woman.


For a guilty person whom the law considers as mohsan, by which Word is understood in this respect an adult sane free Moslem man or woman who has already experienced coition in a legitimate marriage, the penalty is lapidation.


For a free person who is not mohsan, the punishment for fornication is one hundred stripes ...

1 There are two opinions within the school. The opinion of Abu Hanifa is that it is not Zina, and there is no Hadd for it unless it is a repeated offense. And the opinion of his students that it is Zina and the same Hadd applies to it.

[ The second answer was deleted, so I am expanding mine for sake of completion ]

There are three views attributed to Imam Malik on the issue in Tafsir Qurtubi.

  • [More authentic view] Homosexual intercourse will be punished by Rajm, for both the married and the unmarried.

    The evidence used by him is Quran 15:74:

    وامطرنا عليهم حجارة من سجيل

    And we rained upon them stones of hard clay.

    Their primary crime being sodomy as in Quran 7:81:

    انكم لتاتون الرجال شهوة من دون النساء بل انتم قوم مسرفون

    Indeed, you approach men with desire, instead of women. Rather, you are a transgressing people

    And the below Hadith (Hasan) in Abu Daud, Ibn Majah and Tirmizi support this:

    من وجدتموه يعمل عمل قوم لوط ، فاقتلوا الفاعل والمفعول به

    Whoever you find doing the action of the people of Lut, kill the one who does it, and the one to whom it is done.

    Also this Hadith in Ibn Majah

    في الذي يعمل عمل قوم لوط قال ارجموا الأعلى والأسفل ارجموهما جميعا

    Concerning those who do the action of the people of Lut. Stone the one who does it and the one to whom it is done.

  • The married will be stoned and the unmarried imprisoned.

  • Tazir will be given to both the married and the unmarried, same as the view of Abu Hanifa.

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