Questions and Answers > Qur'an > Contradictions Qur'an 1-15

Qur’an 2:228 - From husband separated women wait 3 months or not?

There is a difficulty between some verses in the Qur’an about the question that women separated from their husband by divorce or death have to wait for three months before they can marry again. In Islam waiting period is called iddah. There are differences between Qur’an verses:

1. Divorced women wait 3 monthly periods to marry – Qur’an 2:228,65:4

”Divorced women shall wait concerning themselves for three monthly periods” (Qur’an 2:228 – Yusuf Ali)."And those who no longer expect menstruation among your women - if you doubt, then their period is three months, and [also for] those who have not menstruated" (Qur’an 65:4 – Yusuf Ali).

2. Divorced women wait 4 months and 2 days to marry – Qur’an 2:234

”If any of you die and leave widows behind, they shall wait concerning themselves four months and ten days” (Qur’an 2:234 – Yusuf Ali).

Muslim reply to the contradiction with Qur’an 2:228,65:4 is that divorced women and widows are not the same. However, then we have to ask why a widow has to wait longer than a divorced woman? It is not fair or justice. Therefore the contrast between the Qur’an verses remains.

3. Conclusion

One verse says that divorced women wait 3 monthly periods to marry while other verses mention that it will be 4 months and 2 days. Because there is a contrast about the same question, we have a difficulty in the Qur’an. Therefore the verses show a contradiction in the Qur’an.