4:34 Men are protectors of the women because Allah (has) bestowed some of them over others and because they spend from their wealth. So the righteous women are obedient, guarding in the unseen that which Allah (orders) them to guard. And those (from) whom you fear their ill-conduct, then advise them, and forsake them in bed, and set forth them (id'ribuhunna). Then if they obey you, then do not seek a way against them. Indeed, Allah is Most High, Most Great.
(The root of “id’ribu” (set forth) is “Dad-Ra-Ba”, and it means “go, make a journey, travel, set forth, leave/forsake, strike, beat, hit, etc.”. You use one word or another according to the context. In the case of Verse 4:34, translating / interpreting it as “strike / beat” is not supported by other verses of the Qur’an. So, the Qur’an do not support a translation or interpretation that could imply wife beating. According to the context, (“forsake them in bed” (4:34)), then “set forth them” (4:34) suggests that, if they still have ill-conduct, you do not only forsake them in bed, but, you also leave them in general (in bed, house, etc))(Another point is that Verse 4:34 starts saying “men are protectors of the women”, which implies that men are their protectors, not their aggressors. The Bible is in agreement with the Qur’an; Malachi 2:16 says, “the man who hates and divorces his wife,” says the Lord, the God of Israel, “does violence to the one he should protect,” says the Lord Almighty. So be on your guard, and do not be unfaithful”. The Qur’an confirms the Bible (5:48), in that which God revealed)(Allah knows best)
4:35 And if you fear a dissension between the two of them, then send an arbitrator from his family and an arbitrator from her family. If they both wish reconciliation, Allah will cause reconciliation between both of them. Indeed, Allah is All-Knower, All-Aware.
(The next Verse confirms that man and woman are under the same conditions; it is not about one side (man) using his strength, but the dissension is between the two of them (4:35), then there is an arbitrator from both sides. And reconciliation is also between both of them (4:35))(Another point is that divorce is allowed in Islam, so if a man was to beat a woman, then that woman is allowed to divorce (33:28, 2:237, 2:241). So, in Islam, Muslim women cannot be abused, on the other hand, in Christianity, women cannot divorce (Matthew 5:32); so, Christian women might be oppressed or abused by their husband)(Allah knows best)
4:128 And if a woman fears ill-conduct or desertion from her husband, then there is no sin upon both of them that they make terms of peace between themselves - a reconciliation, and reconciliation is best. And souls are swayed by greed. But if you do good and fear, then indeed, Allah is All-Aware of what you do.
(Verse 4:128 has the same context than Verse 4:34: “ill-conduct” (4:34, 4:128), and tells about “desertion”, or “reconciliation”, so it is one or the other, so it confirms that in the case of ill-conduct, it is about separating, or reconciliating, in both Verses (4:34 and 4:128). So, the Qur’an doesn’t tell about retaining her and beating her, but you have to reconcile (stay married in good terms), or divorce (leave / separate / forsake / set forth, in a fair manner). The Verses of the Qur’an are not mutually exclusive, but complement each other)(Allah knows best)
4:129 And you will never be able to deal justly between the women even if you desired, but do not incline (with) all the inclination and leave her like the suspended one. And if you reconcile and fear - then indeed, Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful. 4:130 And if they separate, Allah will enrich each (of them) from His abundance. And Allah is All-Encompassing, All-Wise.
(Verses 4:129-130 confirm that it is about separating, or reconciliating (“if you reconcile” (4:129); “If they separate” (4:130)). Notice that Verse 4:129 tells about not leaving her like the suspended one, so if they are not in good terms, he doesn’t beat her, but he leaves her, and ultimately they both have to reconcile or divorce)(Allah knows best)
2:231 And when you divorce women and they reach their term, then either retain them in a fair manner or release them in a fair manner (bima’rufin). And do not retain them to hurt them so that you transgress. And whoever does that, then indeed, he wrongs himself. And do not take the Verses of Allah in jest, and remember the Favors of Allah upon you and what is revealed to you of the Book and the wisdom by which He instructs you. And fear Allah and know that Allah is All-Knower of everything.
(Verse 2:231 explicitly says “do not retain them to hurt them”. So, you either “retain them in a fair manner” (2:231), or “release them in a fair manner” (2:231), but retaining them to hurt is explicitly forbidden (2:231))(If you do not divorce, you retain them in a fair manner (“ma’rufin” (2:231)). The root of “ma’rufin” is “Ayn-Ra-Fa”, and it means “honorable, good, kindness, fairness, recognized, etc.”; on the other hand, if you release them, either way, you also do it with kindness (“bima’rufin”))(Interpreting Verse 4:34 as “beating” is in direct contradiction with other Verses of the Qur’an, and it is in contradiction with Verse 4:34 itself; “Men are protectors of the women” (4:34))(“harming” or “beating” opposes to “protecting”)(Allah knows best)
4:19 O you who believe, it is not lawful for you to inherit women by force. And do not constraint them in order to take part of what you have given them unless they commit a clear immorality. And live with them in kindness (bil-ma’rufi). For if you dislike them - perhaps you dislike a thing and Allah has placed much good in it.
(The believers are commanded to live with them in kindness (4:19))(“Beating” opposes to “kindness”. And Verse 4:19 even says that “if you dislike them – perhaps you dislike a thing and Allah has placed much good in it”, so some men might not know or perceive that which is good in regard to women, so the only way is treating them with kindness)(The root of “ma’rufi” (kindness) is “Ayn-Ra-Fa” and it means “become submissive / tractable / pleasant, fragrant, benefaction / goodness; ma’ruf – honorable, known, recognized, good, befitting, fairness, kindness, etc.”)(Allah knows best)
30:21 And among His Signs is that He created for you from yourselves mates that you may find tranquility in them; and He placed love and mercy between you. Indeed, in that are surely Signs for a people who reflect.
(The love and mercy is between both of them. It implies good treatment)(Allah knows best)
24:26 Evil women are for evil men, and evil men are for evil women. And good women are for good men, and good men are for good women. Those are innocent of what they say. For them (is) forgiveness and a noble provision.
3:134 Those who spend in ease and hardship and those who restrain the anger and those who pardon people - and Allah loves the good-doers.
(According to Verse 3:134, the good-doers restrain the anger, so you cannot hit your wife)(Those who hit their wives, it is out of anger and impatience; the Qur’an also tells about being patient (2:153, 2:155, 2:249, 3:146, 8:46, 28:80, 37:102, 39:10, 47:31))(Allah knows best)
33:28 O Prophet, say to your wives, "If you desire the life of the world and its adornment, then come, I will provide for you and release you with a good release.
(The wives are not forced to follow the religion, because there is no compulsion in Islam (2:256), and women can also divorce, with “a good release”)(Allah knows best)
2:237 And if you divorce them before you have touched them while already you have specified for them an obligation (dower), then (give) half of what you have specified, unless they (women) forgo it or the one in whose hands is the marriage knot forgoes it. And if you forgo, it is nearer to righteousness. And do not forget the graciousness among you. Indeed, Allah is All-Seer of what you do.
2:229 Divorce is twice. Then retain in a reasonable manner or release with kindness. And it is not lawful for you to take back whatever you have given them, except if both fear that they can’t keep the limits of Allah. But if you fear that they can’t keep the limits of Allah, then there is no sin on both of them in what she ransoms concerning it. These are the limits of Allah, so do not transgress them. And whoever transgresses the limits of Allah then those - they are the wrongdoers.
(Women can divorce in Islam, but they cannot divorce in Christianity (Matthew 5:32). So, she could be oppressed or abused by her husband)(Allah knows best)
33:59 O Prophet, say to your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers to draw over themselves their outer garments. That is more suitable that they should be known and not harmed. And Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.
(The purpose of the Verses is that women are not harmed, so that they are protected)(Allah knows best)
4:3 And if you fear that not you will be able to do justice with the orphans, then marry what seems suitable to you from the women - two, or three, or four. But if you fear that you will not be just, then one or what your right hands possess. That is more appropriate that you may not oppress.
16:90 Indeed, Allah commands justice and good, and giving to relatives, and forbids immorality and bad and oppression. He admonishes you so that you may take heed.
5:48 And We have revealed to you the Book in truth, confirming the Book that came before it and as a guardian over it. So judge between them by what Allah has revealed and do not follow their vain desires when the truth has come to you. For each of you We have made a law and a clear way. And if Allah had willed, He would have made you one community [and] but to test you in what He has given you; so race to good. To Allah you will all return, then He will inform you concerning that over which you used to differ.
(“Beating” and “leaving” are not the same; why using a word with these two meanings? People is tested in what God has given you (5:48). Some people interpret Verse 4:34 one way or another, but you have to race to good (5:48), and “Those who listen to the Word, then follow the best thereof, those are they whom Allah has guided, and those are men of understanding” (39:18))(Allah knows best)
66:10 Allah presents (daraba) an example for those who disbelieved - the wife of Noah and the wife of Lot. They were under two of Our righteous slaves, but they both betrayed them, so they did not avail both of them from Allah in anything, and it was said, "Enter the Fire with those who enter."
(There are many examples in the Qur’an in which all the meanings of a certain word could not be applied in a certain context. E.g. “daraba” in Verse 66:10 (which is the same word than the one used in Verse 4:34) can neither be translated as “beating” anyhow)(Allah knows best)
See also: Do non-Muslims oppress women?
See also: Can a Muslim divorce his wife? Can a Muslim divorce her husband?
See also: Does the veil (hijab) oppress women? Or are non-Muslims oppressing/denying Muslim women’s right to wear it?
See also: Are women less than men? Is a woman worth one-half of a man in Islam? Are men and women equal?
See also: Is it allowed in Islam to have relations with maids/slaves without marrying? Is adultery permitted?
See also: Was a woman responsible for the original sin?
See also: Is rape allowed?
See also: Can you commit incest?
See also: Is polygamy okay?
See also: Does women have the obligation or can be forced to have relations with her husband’s brother, as stated in Judaism and Christianity?
See also: Are there good manners in Islam / the Qur’an?