(In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.
(1. O Prophet! When you divorce women, divorce them at their `Iddah and count their `Iddah. And have Taqwa of Allah, your Lord. And turn them not out of their homes nor shall they leave, except in case they are guilty of Fahishah Mubayyinah. And those are the set limits of Allah. And whosoever transgresses the set limits of Allah, then indeed he has wronged himself. You know not, it may be that Allah will afterward bring some new thing to pass.)
The Prophet was addressed first in this Ayah, to honor him, even though his Ummah is also being addressed in Allah's statement,
(O Prophet! When you divorce women, divorce them at their `Iddah) Al-Bukhari recorded that `Abdullah bin `Umar divorced his wife, during the lifetime of Allah's Messenger, while she was menstruating. `Umar bin Al-Khattab mentioned that to Allah's Messenger. Allah's Messenger became angry and said,
(Order him to take her back and keep her until she is clean from her menses, and then to wait until she gets her next period and becomes clean again. Then, if he wishes to divorce her, he can divorce her when she is clean from her menses, before he has sexual intercourse with her. This is the `Iddah which Allah the Exalted and Most Honored has fixed.) Al-Bukhari recorded this Hadith in several parts of his Sahih. Muslim collected this Hadith and his narration uses these words,
(This is the `Iddah which Allah has fixed for the women being divorced.) In his Sahih, Muslim has recorded a Hadith which is a more appropriate version from a narration of Ibn Jurayj who said that Abu Az-Zubayr informed him that he heard `Abdur-Rahman bin Ayman, the freed slave of `Azzah, questioning `Abdullah bin `Umar. And Abu Az-Zubayr heard the question, "What about a man who divorces his wife while she is still on her menses'' `Abdullah answered, "During the time of Allah's Messenger, `Abdullah bin `Umar divorced his wife who was menstruating in the life time of Allah's Messenger. So Allah's Messenger said:
(Let him take her back.) so she returned and he said:
(When she is pure, then either divorce or keep her.) `Abdullah bin `Umar said, "Allah's Messenger recited this Ayah: (ياأَيُّها النَّبِيُّ إِذا طَلَّقْتُمُ النِّساءَ فَطَلِّقُوهُنَّ فِي قُبُلِ عِدَّتِهِنَّ) (O Prophet! When you divorce women, divorce them at their `Iddah) And `Abdullah (Ibn Mas`ud) commented on Allah's statement,
(divorce them at their `Iddah) He said, "Purity without intercourse.'' Similar was reported from Ibn `Umar, `Ata', Mujahid, Al-Hasan, Ibn Sirin, Qatadah, Maymun bin Mihran and Muqatil bin Hayyan. It is also reported from `Ikrimah and Ad-Dahhak. `Ali bin Abi Talhah reported from Ibn `Abbas about the Ayah;
(divorce them at their `Iddah), "He does not divorce her while she is on her menses nor while she is pure if he has had intercourse during that (purity). Rather, he leaves her until she has her menses and after the menses ends, then he divorces her once.'' And `Ikrimah said about
(divorce them at their `Iddah), "The `Iddah is made up of cleanliness and the menstrual period.'' So he divorces her while it is clear that she is pregnant, or he does not due to having sex, or since he does not know if she is pregnant or not. This is why the scholars said that there are two types of divorce, one that conforms to the Sunnah and another innovated. The divorce that conforms to the Sunnah is one where the husband pronounces one divorce to his wife when she is not having her menses and without having had sexual intercourse with her after the menses ended. One could divorce his wife when it is clear that she is pregnant. As for the innovated divorce, it occurs when one divorces his wife when she is having her menses, or after the menses ends, has sexual intercourse with her and then divorces her, even though he does not know if she became pregnant or not. There is a third type of divorce, which is neither a Sunnah nor an innovation where one divorces a young wife who has not begun to have menses, the wife who is beyond the age of having menses, and divorcing one's wife before the marriage was consummated. Allah said,
(and count their `Iddah.) meaning, count for it and know its beginning and end, so that the `Iddah does not become prolonged for the woman and she cannot get married again,
(And have Taqwa of Allah, your Lord.) in this matter.
(And turn them not out of their homes nor shall they leave,) meaning, during the duration of the `Iddah, she has the right to housing from her husband, as long as the `Iddah period continues. Therefore, the husband does not have the right to force her out of her house, nor is she allowed to leave his house, because she is still tied to the marriage contract. Allah said,
(except in case they are guilty of Fahishah Mubayyinah.) meaning that the divorced wife is not to abandon her husband's house unless she commits Fahishah Mubayyinah, in which case, she vacates her husband's house. For example, Fahishah Mubayyinah implies adultery, according to `Abdullah bin Mas`ud, Ibn `Abbas, Sa`id bin Al-Musayyib, Ash-Sha`bi, Al-Hasan, Ibn Sirin, Mujahid, `Ikrimah, Sa`id bin Jubayr, Abu Qilabah, Abu Salih, Ad-Dahhak, Zayd bin Aslam, `Ata' Al-Khurasani, As-Suddi, Sa`id bin Hilal and others. Fahishah Mubayyinah implies disobeying her husband openly or when she abuses her husband's family in words and actions, according to Ubay bin Ka`b, Ibn `Abbas, `Ikrimah and others. Allah's statement,
(And those are the set limits of Allah.) means, these are from His legislation and prohibitions,
(And whosoever transgresses the set limits of Allah,) meaning, whoever violates these limits, transgresses them and implements anything else besides them,
(then indeed he has wronged himself.) by doing so.
(You know not, it may be that Allah will afterward bring some new thing to pass.) meaning, `We commanded that the divorced wife remains in her husband's house during the `Iddah period, so that the husband might regret his action and Allah decides that the husband feels in his heart for the marriage to continue.' This way, returning to his wife will be easier for him. Az-Zuhri said that `Ubaydullah bin `Abdullah said that Fatimah bint Qays said about Allah's statement,
(You know not, it may be that Allah will afterward bring some new thing to pass.) "Taking her back.'' Similar was said by Ash-Sha`bi, `Ata', Qatadah, Ad-Dahhak, Muqatil bin Hayyan and Ath-Thawri.
Here the view of the scholars of the Salaf and those who follow them is that housing is not obligatory in the case of the irrevocably divorced woman. They also relied on the Hadith of Fatimah bint Qays Al-Fihriyah when her husband Abu `Amr bin Hafs divorced her the third and final time. He was away from her in Yemen at the time, and he sent her his decision to divorce her. He also sent some barley with his messenger, but she did not like the amount or method of compensation. He said, "By Allah I am not obligated to spend upon you.'' So, she went to Allah's Messenger, who said,
(There is no obligation on him to spend on you.) Muslim added in his narration,
(nor housing.) And he ordered her to finish her `Iddah period in the house of Umm Sharik. He then said,
(She is a woman my Companions visit. Spend this period in the house of Ibn Umm Maktum, for he is a blind man; ﴿he cannot see you if﴾ you take off your garments.) Imam Ahmad collected this Hadith using another chain of narration. In his narration, the Messenger of Allah said,
(Look O daughter of the family of Qays! Spending and housing are required from the husband who can return to his wife. So if he does not have the right to return to her, then she does not have the right to spending and housing. So leave his house and go to so-and-so woman.) He then said,
(They speak to her. Therefore, go to Ibn Umm Maktum, for he is a blind man and cannot see you.) Abu Al-Qasim At-Tabarani recorded that `Amir Ash-Sha`bi went to Fatimah bint Qays, sister of Ad-Dahhak bin Qays, from the tribe of Quraysh. Fatimah was married to Abu `Amr bin Hafs bin Al-Mughirah, from Bani Makhzum. She said, "Abu `Amr bin Hafs sent me his decision to divorce me while he was in an army that had gone to Yemen. I asked his friends to provide me with financial provisions and housing. They said, `He did not send us anything for that, nor did he request it from us.' I went to Allah's Messenger and said to him, `O Allah's Messenger! Abu `Amr bin Hafs divorced me, and I asked his friends to provide me with spending and housing and they said that he did not send them anything for that.' Allah's Messenger said,
(Spending and housing are required from the husband for his divorced wife if he can return to her. If she is not permitted for him anymore, until she marries another husband, then he does not have to provide her with spending and housing.)'' An-Nasa'i also recorded this narration.
(2. Then when they are about to attain their term appointed, either take them back in a good manner or part with them in a good manner. And take as witness two just persons from among you. And establish the testimony for Allah. That will be an admonition given to him who believes in Allah and the Last Day. And whosoever has Taqwa of Allah, He will make a way for him to get out.) (3. And He will provide him from where he never could imagine. And whosoever puts his trust in Allah, then He will suffice him. Verily, Allah will accomplish his purpose. Indeed Allah has set a measure for all things.)
Allah the Exalted says that when the woman who is in her `Iddah nears the end of the `Iddah term, the husband must decide to reconcile with her, thus keeping their marriage together,
(in a good manner) while being kind to her in their companionship. Otherwise, he must decide to divorce her on good terms, without abusing, cursing, or admonishing her. To the contrary, he should divorce her on good terms, observing kindness and good manners.
(And take as witness two just persons from among you.) meaning when taking her back, if this is your decision. Abu Dawud and Ibn Majah recorded that `Imran bin Husayn was asked about a man who divorced his wife and then had sexual intercourse with her, without notifying witnesses of when he divorced her and when he took her back. `Imran said, "His divorce and taking her back was in contradiction to the Sunnah. Incorporate the presence of witnesses for divorcing her and taking her back, and do not repeat your conduct.'' Ibn Jurayj said that `Ata' commented on the Ayah,
(And take as witness two just persons from among you.) "It is not permissible to marry, divorce or take back the divorced wife except with two just witnesses, just as Allah the Exalted has said, except when there is a valid excuse.'' Allah's statement,
(That will be an admonition given to him who believes in Allah and the Last Day.) means, `this, Our command to you to have witnesses in such cases and to establish the witness, is implemented by those who believe in Allah and the Last Day.' This legislation is meant to benefit those who fear Allah's punishment in the Hereafter.
(And whosoever has Taqwa of Allah, He will make a way for him to get out. And He will provide him from where he never could imagine.) meaning, whoever has Taqwa of Allah in what He has commanded and avoids what He has forbidden, then Allah will make a way out for him from every difficulty and will provide for him from resources he never anticipated or thought about. Ibn Abi Hatim recorded that `Abdullah bin Mas`ud said, "The most comprehensive Ayah in the Qur'an is,
(Verily, Allah enjoins Al-`Adl (justice) and Al-Ihsan (doing good) (16:90). The greatest Ayah in the Qur'an that contains relief is,
(And whosoever has Taqwa of Allah, He will make a way for him to get out.)'' `Ikrimah also commented on the Ayah, "Whoever divorces as Allah commanded him, then Allah will make a way out for him.'' Similar was reported from Ibn `Abbas and Ad-Dahhak. `Abdullah bin Mas`ud and Masruq commented on the Ayah,
(And whosoever has Taqwa of Allah, He will make a way for him to get out.) "It pertains to when one knows that if Allah wills He gives, and if He wills He deprives,
(from where he never could imagine.) from resources he did not anticipate'' Qatadah said,
(And whosoever has Taqwa of Allah, He will make a way for him to get out.) "meaning, from every doubt and the horrors experienced at the time of death,
(And He will provide him from where he never could imagine) from where he never thought of or anticipated.'' Allah said,
(And whosoever puts his trust in Allah, then He will suffice him.) Imam Ahmad recorded that Ibn `Abbas said that he rode the Prophet's camel while sitting behind the Prophet, and the Messenger of Allah said to him,
(O boy! I will teach you words (so learn them). Be mindful of Allah and He will protect you, be mindful of Allah and He will be on your side. If you ask, ask Allah, and if you seek help, seek it from Allah. Know that if the Ummah gather their strength to bring you benefit, they will never bring you benefit, except that which Allah has decreed for you. Know that if they gather their strength to harm you, they will never harm you, except with that which Allah has decreed against you. The pens have been raised and the pages are dry.) At-Tirmidhi collected this Hadith and said: "Hasan Sahih.'' Allah's statement,
(Verily, Allah will accomplish His purpose.) meaning, Allah will execute His decisions and judgment that He made for him, in whatever way He wills and chooses,
(Indeed Allah has set a measure for all things.) This is like His saying:
(Everything with Him is in (due) proportion.) (13:8)
(4. Those in menopause among your women, for them the `Iddah, if you have doubt, is three months; and for those who have no courses. And for those who are pregnant, their `Iddah is until they lay down their burden; and whosoever has Taqwa of Allah, He will make his matter easy for him.) (5. That is the command of Allah, which He has sent down to you; and whosoever has Taqwa of Allah, He will expiate from him his sins, and will increase his reward.)