Praise be to Allah, and may Allah’s peace and blessings be upon the Messenger of Allah, his family and his companions.
Wa alaikum assalam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh.
As to what follows:
Reversion while reciting the Quran has 3 types:
1st: Reversion of surahs (chapters), this is to recite in a non-chronological order of the Mus’haf, like reciting surah Al-Naas before reciting Surah Al-Ikhlas. This method was detested by majority of the jurists from Hanafi, Maliki and Hanbali schools of thought whether the recitation is done in one rak’ah or one is reciting out of swalah. But if reversion is done in 2 rak’aats, whereby he recits in 2nd rak’ah a surah which is before the one he recites in the 1st rak’ah, regarding this Al-Nawawi said there is no difference with respect to its permissibility.
A group of scholars went on to say that it is detestable, which is also the narration of Ahmad Ibn Hanbal.
Those who say that it’s detestable support their view by saying that it opposes the order followed by the sahabah (may Allah be pleased with them) which was established by consensus.
As for those who said it is permissible support their view by saying the order of surahs in the Quran was done by ijtihad and there is no text from the Prophet (may Allah’s peace be on him) which say anything on that and for that reason, there was a difference (in the chronological order) among the Mus’haf of the sahabah (may Allah be pleased with them) before the Mus’haf of Uthman.
What is correct is that disruption of the order of the surahs is not detestable. And this is supported by what is narrated by Muslim (772) from the hadith of Huthaifah (may Allah be pleased with them) who said:
“I prayed with the Messenger of Allah (may Allah’s peace be on him) one night and he started reciting al-Baqara. I thought that he would bow at the end of one hundred verses, but he proceeded on; I then thought that he would perhaps recite the whole (surah) in a rak'ah, but he proceeded and I thought he would perhaps bow on completing (this surah). He then started al-Nisa', and recited it; he then started Al-Imran”
2nd: Reversion of verses, this method was detested by consensus if it does not disrupt the meaning, but if it disrupts the meaning then it is prohibited. Some scholars prohibited this type of reversion because chronological order of the verses came by revelation. This is what seems to be more correct if the verses are continuous in one recitation.
3rd: Reversion of words, this method is prohibited by unanimity because it disrupts the composition of the Quran.
And Allah knows best.
Dr. Khalid al-Muslih
1 / 8 / 1428 AH