Wa lan tastatee'ooo an ta'diloo bainan nisaaa'i wa law harastum falaa tameeloo kullal maili fatazaroohaa kalmu'al laqah; wa in tuslihoo wa tattaqoo fa innal laaha kaana Ghafoorar Raheema
And you will never be able to be equal [in feeling] between wives, even if you should strive [to do so]. So do not incline completely [toward one] and leave another hanging. And if you amend [your affairs] and fear Allah - then indeed, Allah is ever Forgiving and Merciful.
1 A. J. Arberry
You will not be able to be equitable between your wives, be you ever so eager; yet do not be altogether partial so that you leave her as it were suspended. If you set things right, and are godfearing, God is All-forgiving, All-compassionate.
2 Abdul Haleem
You will never be able to treat your wives with equal fairness, however much you may desire to do so, but do not ignore one wife altogether, leaving her suspended [between marriage and divorce]. If you make amends and remain conscious of God, He is most forgiving and merciful,
3 Abdul Majid Daryabadi
And ye are not able to deal evenly between the wives, even though ye long to do so, but incline not an extreme inclining so that ye may leave her as one ahanging. And if ye effect a reconciliation and fear Allah, then Allah is ever Forgiving, Merciful.
4 Abdullah Yusuf Ali
Ye are never able to be fair and just as between women, even if it is your ardent desire; But turn not away (from a woman) altogether, so as to leave her (as it were) hanging (in the air). If ye come to a friendly understanding, and practise self-restraint, Allah is Oft-forgiving, Most Merciful.
5 Abul Ala Maududi
You will not be able to treat your wives with absolute justice not even when you keenly desire to do so. (It suffices in order to follow the Law of Allah that) you incline not wholly to one, leaving the other in suspense. If you act rightly and remain God-fearing, surely Allah is All-Forgiving, All-Compassionate.
6 Ahmed Ali
Howsoever you may try you will never be able to treat your wives equally. But do not incline (to one) exclusively and leave (the other) suspended (as it were). Yet if you do the right thing and are just, God is verily forgiving and kind.
7 Ahmed Raza Khan
And you will never be able to deal equally between women however much you may desire – therefore do not be totally inclined towards one leaving the other in uncertainty; and if you do good and practice piety, then (know that) Allah is Oft Forgiving, Most Merciful.
8 Ali Quli Qarai
You will not be able to be fair between wives, even if you are eager to do so. Yet do not turn away from one altogether, leaving her as if in a suspense. But if you are conciliatory and Godwary, Allah is indeed all-forgiving, all-merciful.
9 Ali Ünal
You will never be able to deal between your wives with absolute equality (in respect of love and emotional attachment), however much you may desire to do so. But do not turn away altogether (from any one of them), so as to leave her in a dangling state (uncertain if she has or does not have a husband). If you act righteously (between them) and act in piety (fearful of doing any deliberate wrong to any of them), then surely God is All-Forgiving, All-Compassionate.
10 Amatul Rahman Omar
It is not within your power (as far as natural feelings of love and devotion are concerned,) to maintain perfect balance between wives (and to treat them with equal justice) even though you be ever so eager; but do not incline with a total inclination (towards one so that you completely sever your relations with the other) so as to leave her like some thing suspended (as virtually deserted). And if you keep things right and guard against evil, then surely Allâh is Great Protector, Ever Merciful.
11 English Literal
And you will never be able that you be just/equitable between the women, and (even) if you held onto stingily and desired strongly (were very careful), so do not bend/sway all the bend/inclination, so you leave her as/like the suspended neither properly married nor divorced and free to remarry (abused, abandoned and neglected), and if you reconciliate, and you fear and obey (God), so then God was/is a forgiving, merciful.
12 Faridul Haque
And you will never be able to deal equally between women however much you may desire - therefore do not be totally inclined towards one leaving the other in uncertainty; and if you do good and practice piety, then (know that) Allah is Oft Forgiving, Most Merciful.
13 Hamid S. Aziz
To Allah belongs all that is in the heavens and that is in the earth! We have charged those who have been given the Book before you, and you too, that you fear (respect and do your duty to) Allah. But if you disbelieve, verily, to Allah belongs all that is in the heavens and that is in the earth, and Allah is Absolute (free of all wants) and Worthy of all Praise!
14 Hilali & Khan
You will never be able to do perfect justice between wives even if it is your ardent desire, so do not incline too much to one of them (by giving her more of your time and provision) so as to leave the other hanging (i.e. neither divorced nor married). And if you do justice, and do all that is right and fear Allah by keeping away from all that is wrong, then Allah is Ever Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.
15 Maulana Mohammad Ali
And if a woman fears ill-usage from her husband or desertion no blame is on them if they effect a reconciliation between them. And reconciliation is better. And avarice is met with in (men’s) minds. And if you do good (to others) and keep your duty, surely Allah is ever aware of what you do.
16 Mohammad Habib Shakir
And you have it not in your power to do justice between wives, even though you may wish (it), but be not disinclined (from one) with total disinclination, so that you leave her as it were in suspense; and if you effect a reconciliation and guard (against evil), then surely Allah is Forgiving, Merciful.
17 Mohammed Marmaduke William Pickthall
Ye will not be able to deal equally between (your) wives, however much ye wish (to do so). But turn not altogether away (from one), leaving her as in suspense. If ye do good and keep from evil, lo! Allah is ever Forgiving, Merciful.
18 Muhammad Sarwar
You will never be able to maintain justice among your wives and love them all equally, no matter how hard you try. Do not give total preference to one of them, leaving the other as if in suspense. If you do bring about reconciliation and maintain piety, God is All-forgiving and All-merciful.
19 Qaribullah & Darwish
You will not be able to be just between your women, even though you are eager. Do not be altogether partial so that you leave her as if she were suspended. If you reform and are cautious, Allah is the Forgiver, the Merciful.
20 Safi-ur-Rahman al-Mubarakpuri
You will never be able to do perfect justice between wives even if it is your ardent desire, so do not incline too much to one of them so as to leave the other hanging. And if you do justice, and do all that is right and have Taqwa, then Allah is Ever Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.
21 Wahiduddin Khan
You will never be able to treat your wives with equal fairness, however much you may desire to do so, but do not ignore one wife altogether, leaving her suspended [between marriage and divorce]. And if you make amends and act righteously, surely God is most forgiving and merciful.
22 Talal Itani
You will not be able to treat women with equal fairness, no matter how much you desire it. But do not be so biased as to leave another suspended. If you make amends, and act righteously—God is Forgiving and Merciful.
23 Tafsir jalalayn
You will never be able to be just to, to treat equally, your wives, in terms of love, even if you be eager, for this; yet do not turn altogether away, towards the one you love with respect to the shares and maintenance expenses, so that you leave her, the one from whom you turn away, like one suspended, one that is neither a slavegirl nor a woman with a husband. If you set things right, by being just with the shares, and fear, injustice, surely God is ever Forgiving, regarding the inclination in your hearts, Merciful, to you in this respect.
24 Tafseer Ibn Kathir
وَلَن تَسْتَطِيعُواْ أَن تَعْدِلُواْ بَيْنَ النِّسَاء وَلَوْ حَرَصْتُمْ
You will never be able to do perfect justice between wives even if it is your ardent desire,
Ibn Abbas, Ubaydah As-Salmani, Mujahid, Al-Hasan Al-Basri and Ad-Dahhak bin Muzahim stated,
means, O people! You will never be able to be perfectly just between wives in every respect. Even when one divides the nights justly between wives, there will still be various degrees concerning love, desire and sexual intimacy.
Imam Ahmad and the collectors of the Sunan recorded that Aishah said,
"The Messenger of Allah used to treat his wives equally and proclaim,
اللَّهُمَّ هَذَا قَسْمِي فِيمَا أَمْلِكُ فَلَ تَلُمْنِي فِيمَا تَمْلِكُ وَلَا أَمْلِك
O Allah! This is my division in what I own, so do not blame me for what You own and I do not own, (referring to his heart).
This was the wording that Abu Dawud collected, and its chain of narrators is Sahih.
فَلَ تَمِيلُواْ كُلَّ الْمَيْلِ
so do not incline too much to one of them,
means, when you like one of your wives more than others, do not exaggerate in treating her that way.
so as to leave the other hanging.
referring to the other wives.
Ibn Abbas, Mujahid, Sa`id bin Jubayr, Al-Hasan, Ad-Dahhak, Ar-Rabi` bin Anas, As-Suddi and Muqatil bin Hayyan said that;
Mu`allaqah (hanging) means, "She is neither divorced nor married."
Abu Dawud At-Tayalisi recorded that Abu Hurayrah said that the Messenger of Allah said,
مَنْ كَانَتْ لَهُ امْرَأَتَانِ فَمَالَ إِلى إِحْدَاهُمَا جَاءَ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ وَأَحَدُ شِقَّيْهِ سَاقِط
Whoever has two wives and inclines to one of them (too much), will come on the Day of Resurrection with one of his sides dragging.
وَإِن تُصْلِحُواْ وَتَتَّقُواْ فَإِنَّ اللّهَ كَانَ غَفُورًا رَّحِيمًا
And if you do justice, and do all that is right and have Taqwa, then Allah is Ever Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.
The Ayah states;If you do justice and divide equally in what you have power over, while fearing Allah in all conditions, then Allah will forgive you the favoritism that you showed to some of your wives.
Allah then said,
وَإِن يَتَفَرَّقَا يُغْنِ اللّهُ كُلًّ مِّن سَعَتِهِ وَكَانَ اللّهُ وَاسِعًا حَكِيمًا