The issue of apostasy is important to keep in mind the time, circumstances and the conditions that existed at the time of a particular ruling or judgment. Most modern governments do not apply Shari`ah law. However, this does not justify individuals taking it upon themselves to kill people if they apostatize from Islam. If this were to happen, such reckless action would only lead to a vicious circle of murder and homicide in which case a great deal of innocent people would be injured. As it stands presently, the means for dealing with apostasy are appropriate. Muslims should know that Almighty Allah has promised the apostate a severe punishment in this life, and an even greater punishment in the next life.

Sheikh Muhammad Al-Mukhtar Al-Shinqiti, Director of the Islamic Center of South Plains, Lubbock, Texas, states the following:

“What I understand from different hadiths on the issue is that apostasy has two different aspects: one, as an intellectual position, i.e. a Muslim who is no longer convinced of the truth of Islam. The second apostasy is in the meaning of political treason and military rebellion against Muslims. During the time of the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him), the person who changed his religion joined the pagan army and fought against Muslims, and that is, in my view, what is meant by: “one who reverts from Islam (apostate) and leaves the Muslims.” Therefore, apostasy as purely an intellectual position has no prescribed punishment in the Islamic law, but if a Muslim committed treason against the Muslim Ummah and joined the enemy fighting against Muslims, then he would deserved the death punishment, especially at times of war. Even in secular laws in some countries the penalty for treason is capital punishment.
This does not mean that apostasy is not a great sin – indeed it is the worst of all sins, and Allah says that He will punish those who committed such a heinous act. But not every sin that is punishable on the Day of Judgment has punishment in this world.”

It has become clear now that there are different rulings pertaining to the apostate and there are different types of apostasy. The sincerity of each person in following his religion is left to Allah as Allah Alone is the Only One Who knows what one’s is inside conscience. With all this in mind, Islam is keen to prevent disruption and chaos from occurring in the society as a result of persons taking the law into their own hands for this action is totally prohibited in order to allow social peace and harmony to occur and get established in the society.