Islam is very clear about physical relations outside of marriage, also known as Zina. What makes the aftermath even more severe, is the punishment for Zina. The punishment is not light, and we must understand that it is there to prevent us from committing something that we may later regret.
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The punishment for Zina in the Quran is broken down, based on the severity of the sin committed. Zina can be committed both before marriage, or while you are in a marriage, or even if you are divorced and are having physical relations with someone while not married to that person. This is merely a quick look at the punishments before marriage.
Punishment For Zina in Islam Before Marriage
If you engage in physical relations with someone before marriage then the punishment is a 100 lashes. If both the individuals are unmarried then they are both to receive a 100 lashes as per law.
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It is clearly stated in in Surah An-Nur, verse 2:
“The woman and the man guilty of adultery or fornication, flog each of them with a hundred stripes: Let not compassion move you in their case, as is the matter prescribed by Allah, if ye believe in Allah and the Last Day: and let a party of the Believers witness their punishment.”
Surah An-Nur also goes on to say:
“A virgin committing Zina with a virgin: one hundred lashes for each and banishment for one year for the man.”
In this day and age, banishment would mean more so banishment from society or family.
The punishment for Zina will also continue in the hereafter if one does not repent, and if the Zina continues marriage. There will not only be hellfire, but a denial of the bounties of heaven along with the mandated punishment.
Sura Al-Furqan sheds light into the punishments as well:
“And those who invoke not any other god along with Allah, nor kill such person as Allah has forbidden, except for just cause, nor commit illegal sexual intercourse; and whoever does this shall receive the punishment. The torment will be doubled to him on the Day of Resurrection, and he will abide therein in disgrace; Except those who repent and believe, and do righteous deeds; for those, Allah will change their sins into good deeds, and Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful”.
Also note that if a married person commits Zina, then the sharia law punishment for adultery (if you are married) is being stoned or lashed to death. The difference in the severity for the married person, is because of the institution of marriage that is being broken by the married person. It is breaking the very bonds that bind the Ummah together.
There is also a punishment of 80 lashes, for people who falsely accuse other people of Zina and are not able to prove it by producing at least four witnesses.
The punishment for Zina is severe because of the end result. Zina causes damage to the person and to their community. Even though not all Muslim countries practice Sharia law, Allah is still seeing and he knows all. If not in this world, he will punish you in the next. In case these punishments do exist in your country, then we recommend looking into it to be informed.
But always remember that Allah is merciful and kind. We make mistakes, and we are allowed to repent for our mistakes. If you have done Zina then repent and ask for forgiveness. Allah will surely spare you punishment.