What Should I Do If I’m Unsure Where a Verse Ends during My Prayer?

Shafi'i Fiqh

Answered by Shaykh Irshaad Sedick

Question 

When you are reciting the Quran in prayer, suppose you come to a verse and don’t know what the ending is for sure, but you are pretty sure what it is. Can you recite according to what you are pretty sure of? For example, if you are unsure if the ending is عزيز رحيم or عزيز حكيم, but you are pretty sure it is عزيز حكيم, so you recite that. If that is not ok, should you stop partway through the verse and make ruku?

Answer

In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate. May Allah alleviate our difficulties and guide us to that which is pleasing to Him.

The scenario is strange: deciding between “sure” and “pretty sure”.

I’d advise you to complete the verse with what you’re “pretty sure” of instead of stopping in the middle of the verse.

Qat‘ (termination of recitation) is only allowed at the end of a verse. Instead, follow where you think the verse ends, not in the middle, which is not encouraged. [Marsafi, Hidayat Al-Qari ila Tajwid Kalam Al-Bari]

And Allah knows best.

I pray this is of benefit and that Allah guides us all.

[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.