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The word Stealing is Wrongful or Willful taking of anything belonging to someone else, with an intention to deprive the owner of its use or benefit, either temporarily or permanently. It also means taking another person’s things (any property) without his/her permission/knowledge or without a legal right to do so. And, the person who steals is called a thief. This is applicable to stealing anything (of prescribed value) either from an individual or from any other way.


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Stealing is a big sin in Islam. How big a sin stealing is can be understood by understanding the following ayath of Qur’an: “O Prophet! When believing women come to you to give the Bai’ah (the pledge), that they will not associate anything in worship with Allah, that they will not steal, that they will not commit illegal sexual intercourse, that they will not kill their children, that they will not utter slander, intentionally forging falsehood, and that they will not disobey you in Ma’ruf, then accept their Bai’ah, and ask Allah to forgive them. Verily, Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” Quran Surah Al-Mumtahanah, 60: 12


This ayath is about ‘Oath of Allegiance’ for women. It can be seen that one of the requirements of the pledge was that a woman shall undertake that she shall not steal. Stealing has been included along with other grave crimes like Shirk, Illegal sex, Murder (of children) etc.


And do not consume one another's wealth unjustly or send it [in bribery] to the rulers in order that [they might aid] you [to] consume a portion of the wealth of the people in sin, while you know [it is unlawful]. Quran Surah Baqrah 2:188



By this hadith we know how grave a sin stealing is: Narrated Ibn Abbas (RA): The Prophet said, “When an adulterer commits illegal sexual intercourse, then he is not a believer at the time he is doing it; and when somebody steals, he is not a believer at the time he is stealing.” Book of Al-Hudud, Sahih Bukhari, Vol. 8: 6782 and Sahih Muslim 57


This narration clearly tells us that at the time of stealing, the thief is not in the state of Eeman, hence the enormity of the sin.


See also

Stealing in answering allegations Tab




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