Is my repentance an oath, vow or a covenant?

Answered according to Hanafi Fiqh by

Assalum Alaikum shiekh,

I have a major problem troubling me right now. So basically, in the past months i used to repent alot of times. On each repentance i used to say” I promise you, O Allah, that i wont commit those sins again” or “I promise you, O Allah, that i will try my best not to commit those sins again”, thinking like this Allah would accept my repentance. I do not know how much repentances i did, also i do not know if this is a vow or an oath. The sins are very very hard to avoid, such as not lying, not wasting time and many more. This is causing me lots of hardships. I always cry that because i broke my oath or vow (I dont know which) and that i didnt obey Allah etc. I also need to mention that i did not know the ruling of vows, (i think they are that you need to fulfill the vow,) but i always thought that those promises i did to Allah are oaths not vows, so the easiest kafarrah (expiation) for me is fasting 3 days. I was already ready to expiate those oaths, but now i do not know if it is a vow (Nadhr) or a convenant or an oath… So if it turned out that they were vows, meaning I messed up, because it is hard to avoid. I know Allah doesnt want hardships to his servants. 

So question is.. Are those oaths or vows or convenants? and what are there expiations? What do i have to do now?


In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful. 

As-salāmu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullāhi wa-barakātuh. 


Brother in Islam, 


We make Dua Allah grant us Tawfeeq and ability to abstain from sins. Aameen.


A Nazr (vow) is to take an oath to make a permissible act compulsory and binding upon oneself. [1]

There are three conditions for a Nazr to be valid.

The act that one has vowed to do must be within those acts that are compulsory at some time, for example one makes a vow to keep Nafl fast. Fast is an act that is compulsory in Ramadan. Hence one may make a vow to keep a Nafl fast.

Secondly, the act that one has vowed to do must be a purposeful and a direct act of Ibadah, for example, Nafl Salah. Salah is a direct and purposeful act of Ibadah. It should not be just a means of Ibadah, for example, Wudhu. Hence one may vow to perform Nafl Salah. One may not vow to make Wudhu.

Likewise, the act itself must not be compulsory, for example, Fardh Salah. One cannot vow that I will perform Fajr Salah.

If one made a Nazr to do a certain act, he should fulfill that act, for example, if he took a Nazr to keep a fast on a particular day then he should fast on that day if he did not do so, then he should keep the fast on another day. [2]

A Yameen[3] is to undertake to do or not to do a certain act in future in the name of Allah, for example, one takes an oath in the name of Allah not to drink honey water in future. If one did so, then he will have to give Kaffarah which is that he feeds ten people an average meal twice in a day or one person two meals a day for ten days; or he may clothe ten people. If he is unable to feed or clothe people as explained above, then he should fast for three consecutive days.  [4]

In the enquired situation, you made a promise not to commit certain sins. That is not Nazr as the conditions of Nazr are not fulfilled and not Yameen as the oath is not in the name of Allah. You made a promise to Allah. You did not make a promise in the name of Allah. This is a promise (Wa’dah).

If you have went against that promise and committed sins , make Tawbah and Istighfaar.

And Allah Ta’āla Knows Best 

Mohamed Ebrahim bin Ismail Abdullah 


Student – Darul Iftaa 

Pietermaritzburg, South Africa 


Checked and Approved by, 

Mufti Ebrahim Desai. 


26-01-1441| 26-09-2019



نور الإيضاح ونجاة الأرواح في الفقه الحنفي (ص: 143)

1 -[شروط الوفاء بالنذر]

إذا نذر شيئا لزمه الوفاء به إذا اجتمع فيه ثلاثة شروط:

1 – أن يكون من جنسه واجب.

2 – وأن يكون مقصودا.

3 – ليس واجبا.

4 -[وقد زيد شرط رابع وهو أن لا يكون المنذور محالا]



البناية شرح الهداية (6/ 142)

[قال لله علي صوم سنة بدون التعليق بشيء]

(ومن نذر نذرًا مطلقًا) ش: أي مطلقًا عن ذكر الشرط بأن قال لله علي صوم سنة بدون التعليق بشيء م: (فعليه الوفاء به) ش: أي بما سمى م: (لقوله – عَلَيْهِ السَّلَامُ -) ش: أي لقول النبي – صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ – م: «من نذر وسمى فعليه الوفاء بما سمى» ش: هذا الحديث غريب.

وفي جواب الوفاء بالنذر أحاديث صحاح مما أخرجه البخاري عن سعيد بن جبير عن ابن

عباس – رَضِيَ اللَّهُ عَنْهُمَا – «أن رجلًا قال يا رسول الله إن أختي نذرت أن تحج وإنها ماتت قبل أن تحج فقال – عَلَيْهِ السَّلَامُ – لو كان عليها دين أكنت قاضيه، قال نعم، قال فاقض دين الله فهو أحق بالقضاء» .


صحيح البخاري – البغا (6/ 2464)

 6321 – حدثنا آدم حدثنا شعبة عن أبي بشر قال سمعت سعيد بن جبير عن ابن عباس رضي الله عنهما قال

 : أتى رجل النبي صلى الله عليه و سلم فقال له إن أختي نذرت أن تحج وإنها ماتت فقال النبي صلى الله عليه و سلم ( لو كان عليها دين أكنت قاضيه ) . قال نعم قال ( فاقض الله فهو أحق بالقضاء )



الدر المختار وحاشية ابن عابدين (رد المحتار) (5/ 461)

فَإِنَّ حَقِيقَةَ الْيَمِينِ عَقْدٌ يَتَقَوَّى بِهِ عَزْمُ الْحَالِفِ عَلَى الْفِعْلِ أَوْ التَّرْكِ فِي الْمُسْتَقْبَلِ.


{لَا يُؤَاخِذُكُمُ اللَّهُ بِاللَّغْوِ فِي أَيْمَانِكُمْ وَلَكِنْ يُؤَاخِذُكُمْ بِمَا عَقَّدْتُمُ الْأَيْمَانَ فَكَفَّارَتُهُ إِطْعَامُ عَشَرَةِ مَسَاكِينَ مِنْ أَوْسَطِ مَا تُطْعِمُونَ أَهْلِيكُمْ أَوْ كِسْوَتُهُمْ أَوْ تَحْرِيرُ رَقَبَةٍ فَمَنْ لَمْ يَجِدْ فَصِيَامُ ثَلَاثَةِ أَيَّامٍ ذَلِكَ كَفَّارَةُ أَيْمَانِكُمْ إِذَا حَلَفْتُمْ وَاحْفَظُوا أَيْمَانَكُمْ كَذَلِكَ يُبَيِّنُ اللَّهُ لَكُمْ آيَاتِهِ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَشْكُرُونَ (89)} [المائدة: 89]

فتاوى عثمانية ج 9 ص 8

فتاوى رحيمية ج 9 ص 28

فتاوى محمودية ج 20 ص 213



This answer was collected from, which is operated under the supervision of Mufti Ebrahim Desai from South Africa.

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