What Is the Ruling If I Took an Oath Not to Continue an Action If Allah Forgive Me?

Hanafi Fiqh

Answered by Mawlana Ilyas Patel


I made a vow (nadhr) that if Allah forgives me, I will not continue a bad action of mine. However, I have come across someone who said this oath is broken due to not being able to know whether Allah has forgiven you or not. Hence, I went to this site to confirm whether my vow to Allah is broken and I have to give an expiation (kaffara) or if I have to keep it still and avoid the action if so, what is my reasoning?


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

I pray you are in good faith and health. Thank you for your question.

This is an oath and not a vow. It is sinful and disrespectful of you to condition your oath like this. One does not know whether one will be forgiven or is forgiven. However, there can be signs in one’s life, like having regular success in seeking forgiveness and repenting to Allah Most High, when one falls into sin or commits any wrong. You will give an expiation if you were to commit this wrong action.

Abu Huraira (Allah be pleased with him) reported Allah’s Messenger (Allah bless him and give peace) said, He who took an oath and then found another thing better than (this) should expiate for the oath (broken) by him and do (the better thing). [Muslim]

Abu Tarif  ‘Adiy ibn Hatim (Allah be pleased with him) reported that the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) said: “Whoever takes an oath to do something and then he finds a better alternative which brings him closer to Allah should do what is better in piety.”  [Muslim]


Perform the general expiation of breaking an oath (yamin), which is to feed ten poor persons (2 meals each), clothe them (1 garment each), or give them the equivalent monetary value. If one is unable to do that, one must fast for three consecutive days.

A vow is to verbally swear that if something happens, one will do some act of worship, like praying, fasting, giving charity, and the like. If that thing takes place, it is wajib for him to fulfill the vow by doing that act of worship. Read the difference between a vow, oath, and promise below. [Maydani, Al-Lubab Fi Sharh al-Kitab]

I would like you to go through the valuable answers and links below. You will receive guidance and direction, in sha’ Allah.


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I pray this helps with your question.
[Mawlana] Ilyas Patel
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Mawlana Ilyas Patel is a traditionally-trained scholar who has studied in the UK, India, Pakistan, Syria, Jordan, and Turkey. He started his early education in the UK. He went on to complete the hifz of the Quran in India, then enrolled in an Islamic seminary in the UK, where he studied the secular and ‘Aalimiyya sciences. He then traveled to Karachi, Pakistan. He has been an Imam in Rep of Ireland for several years. He has taught hifz of the Quran, Tajwid, Fiqh, and many other Islamic sciences to children and adults onsite and online extensively in the UK and Ireland. He taught at a local Islamic seminary for 12 years in the UK, where he was a librarian and a teacher of Islamic sciences. He currently resides in the UK with his wife. His interest is a love of books and gardening.