Counterjihadreport.com claims the Quran says in its verse 4:89 that

“Those who reject Islam must be killed. If they turn back (from Islam), take hold of them and kill them wherever you find them.” QURAN 4:89

A search for the quote returns at least 70 results. Is it true?

  • Related: islam.stackexchange.com/questions/14595/…
    – LCIII
    Dec 27, 2016 at 14:01
  • Related: islam.stackexchange.com/questions/7421/…
    – LCIII
    Dec 27, 2016 at 14:02
  • Let's take interpretation of religious texts to Islam.SE or Hermeneutics.SE. This isn't an issue of empirical truth, but of interpretation.
    – Oddthinking
    Dec 27, 2016 at 14:42
  • 2
    I do not believe making hermeneutical interpretations of religious texts is on topic here. If you disagree, please take it to meta, and get community support.
    – Oddthinking
    Dec 28, 2016 at 13:03
  • 2
    @Oddthinking Putting aside interpretation, the quotation isn't accurate. The "Those who reject Islam must be killed" portion of the verse simply isn't present. So the question should be reopened. This is a very objective truth that the verse literally doesn't say what the claim accuses it of saying.
    – DavePhD
    Dec 30, 2016 at 13:12

1 Answer 1


The are many translations of the verse, but that is not a reasonable one. Instead:

They wish you would disbelieve as they disbelieved so you would be alike. So do not take from among them allies until they emigrate for the cause of Allah. But if they turn away, then seize them and kill them wherever you find them and take not from among them any ally or helper.

-- Quran 4:89

A more complete quotation of this portion of the Quran, from the first English translation directly from Arabic, is:

Why are ye divided concerning the ungodly into two parties [footnote c]; since God hath overturned them for what they have committed? Will ye direct him whom God hath led astray ; since for him whom God shall lead astray thou shalt find no true path? They desire that ye should become infidels, as they are infidels, and that ye should be equally wicked with themselves. Therefore take no friends from among them, until they fly their country for the religion of GoD; and if they turn back from the faith, take them, and kill them wherever ye find them; and take no friend from among them, nor any helper, except those who go unto a people who are in alliance with you [footnote d], for those who come unto you, their hearts forbidding them either to fight against you, or to fight against their own people [footnote e].

Where footnote c is:

Why are ye divided concerning the ungodly into two parties?] This passage was revealed according to some, when certain of Mohammed's followers, pretending not to like Medina, desired leave to go elsewhere, and having obtained it, went farther and farther, till they joined the idolaters; or, as others say, on occasion of some deserters at the battle of Ohod ; concerning whom the Moslems were divided in opinion whether they should be slain, as infidels, or not.

  • @MohammadSakibArifin People who Allah caused to go astray.
    – DavePhD
    Dec 27, 2016 at 14:19
  • @MohammadSakibArifin Right, which is why I said "they" means people who Allah caused to go astray.
    – DavePhD
    Dec 27, 2016 at 14:31
  • @MohammadSakibArifin ok, I'll improve it. I deleted my answer when it was on IslamSE, but somehow deleting there doesn't delete here.
    – DavePhD
    Dec 30, 2016 at 2:53
  • @Mohammad Sakib Arifin: Perhaps the way to get an empirical answer would be to read the Hadith, and find out what the Prophet and his forces actually did.
    – jamesqf
    Dec 30, 2016 at 5:11

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