Can the Jinn Steal?

Answered by Shaykh Irshaad Sedick 

Question Summary

Can the Jinn steal, from our house, for example?

Question Answer

In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate.

May Allah grant us true faith and guide us to that which pleases Him, Amin.

Although it is possible for the Jinn to steal, it is incredibly improbable and not something about which believers should be concerned. We advise you not to be overly concerned with that since it is rare, and we should avoid unnecessary superstition, and Allah knows best.

Jinn can Steal

The evidence proving that it is possible, albeit unlikely, is within the Qur’an and Sunna.

Evidence from the Qur’an

Allah (The Majestic and Most High) said regarding His Prophet Sulayman (Solomon, peace be upon him):

“He said: ‘O chiefs! Which of you can bring me her throne before they come to me surrendering themselves in obedience?’ An ‘Ifrit(strong one) from the Jinn said: ‘I will bring it to you before you rise from your place (council).’”  [Qur’an 27: 39]

Evidence from the Sunna

There is also an authentic and lengthy narration on the authority of Abu Hurayra (may Allah be pleased with him), who said:

Allah’s Messenger (may Allah bless him and give him peace) deputed me to keep the obligatory charity (paid before the Festival of Breaking the Fast of Ramadan) (Zaka Al-Fitr). Someone came and started taking (stealthily) handfuls of the foodstuff of the Zaka. I took hold of him and said, “By Allah, I will take you to Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him).”

He said, “Leave me, for I am needy and have many dependents, and I am in dire straits.” I released him, and in the morning, Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) asked me, “O Abu Hurayra! What did your prisoner do yesterday?” I said, “O Allah’s Messenger! The person complained of being needy and having many dependents, so I pitied him and let him go.”

Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) said, “Indeed, he told you a lie, and he will be coming again.” I believed that he would show up again as Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) had told me. So, I waited for him watchfully.

When he (showed up and) started stealing handfuls of food, I caught hold of him again and said, “I will take you to Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him). He said, “Leave me, for I am very needy and have many dependents. I promise I will not come back again.” I pitied him and let him go.

In the morning, Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) asked me, “O Abu Hurayra, what did your prisoner do.” I replied, “O Allah’s Messenger! He complained of his great need and so many dependents, so I took pity on him and set him free.”

Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) said, “Verily, he told you a lie, and he will return.” I waited for him attentively for the third time, and when he (came and) started stealing handfuls of the food, I caught hold of him and said, “I will surely take you to Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) as it is the third time you promise not to return, yet you break your promise and come.” He said, “Let me go, and I will teach you some words with which Allah will benefit you.”

I asked, “What are they?” He replied, “Whenever you go to bed, recite the Verse of the Throne (Aya Al-Kursiyy) (Qur’an 2:255) [If you do so], Allah will appoint a guard for you; who will stay with you and no Satan will come near you until morning.”

(Abu Hurayra or another narrator added) that they (the Companions) were very keen to do good deeds… The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “He spoke the truth, although he is an absolute liar. Do you know whom you were talking to, these three nights, O Abu Hurayra?” I said, “No.” He said, “It was Satan.”  [Bukhari (mu’allaq), Ibn Khuzayma, Bayhaqi]

Allah’s System in this World

In His infinite Knowledge and Wisdom, Allah causes the matters of this world to run following a set of laws that He predetermined for this world. Gravity, for example, necessitates things will remain on the surface of the earth, even though Allah can allow things to float away.

About His system of running the world, Allah says: “[This is] the established way of Allah with those who passed on before; and you will not find in the way of Allah any change.” [Qur’an 33:62]

In this world, part of Allah’s system is that the unseen and metaphysical realm generally remains unseen and ineffectual on the seen and physical realm. Allah’s system facilitates order and sanity in the life of this world, without which, obsessions would consume us with the possibilities of Jinn and other unseen beings, and Allah knows best.

I pray this is of benefit.
[Shaykh] Irshaad Sedick

Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Shaykh Irshaad Sedick was raised in South Africa in a traditional Muslim family. He graduated from Dar al-Ulum al-Arabiyyah al-Islamiyyah in Strand, Western Cape, under the guidance of the late world-renowned scholar, Shaykh Taha Karaan.

Shaykh Irshaad received Ijaza from many luminaries of the Islamic world, including Shaykh Taha Karaan, Mawlana Yusuf Karaan, and Mawlana Abdul Hafeez Makki, among others.

He is the author of the text “The Musnad of Ahmad ibn Hanbal: A Hujjah or not?” He has served as the Director of the Discover Islam Centre and Al Jeem Foundation. For the last five years till present, he has served as the Khatib of Masjid Ar-Rashideen, Mowbray, Cape Town.

Shaykh Irshaad has thirteen years of teaching experience at some of the leading Islamic institutes in Cape Town). He is currently building an Islamic online learning and media platform called ‘Isnad Academy’ and pursuing his Master’s degree in the study of Islam at the University of Johannesburg. He has a keen interest in healthy living and fitness.