Permissibility of replacing the stoning penalty of Zina; with something less painful

Q 5: Is it obligatory to execute the penalty of stoning to death once the crime of Zina (sexual intercourse outside marriage) is proven, or is it permissible to use a quicker, less painful method in certain cases?

A: The penalty of Zina for married and unmarried persons, its form and method, and the manner in which it is executed are divinely inspired with no room for reason, as the wisdom behind them is known to Allah Alone. He (Glorified be He) is All-Knowledgeable of His servants and of what sets right their affairs in this world and the Hereafter and what drives them away from evil and protects them from anything that may be of harm. Allah (Glorified be He) prescribed the penalty of whipping for an unmarried person who commits Zina and the punishment of stoning to death to a married person who commits Zina. This aims at protecting the honor, preserving lineage, safeguarding familial rights and property, purifying the society from corruption, and stopping turmoil and bloodshed. Thus, Allah prescribed these penalties with His Wisdom, Justice, (Part No. 22; Page No. 32) Mercy and Bounty. Even though executing the penalty of Zina is painful and disgraceful to those who openly commit it, it is more harmful and damaging to the society. Allah (Exalted be He) commands that a group of Muslims should witness the execution of the penalty to learn a lesson and to further disgrace the committer of Zina. In addition, Allah forbids us from showing mercy to those who commit Zina. Thus, Muslims have no right to alter the divinely inspired penalty of Zina, or any other, out of leniency or mercy or to make things easy for sinners. Allah is their Lord and He is closer to them. He prescribed the penalty of whipping for the unmarried committer of Zina and stoning to death for the married, and He is the best Judge and the most Merciful. He is Sufficient for us and He is the best Helper.May Allah grant us success. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions.