Compilation of the Qur'an and Textual Variances
The Qur'an in use today was one of two dozen different Qur'ans compiled after Muhammad's death. Muhammad's 'prophet-hood' ministry lasted 23 years, ending with his unexpected death. During these 23 years, Muhammad received 'revelations', and recited them to his followers. The word 'Qur'an' means 'recitation'. These 'revelations' constituted the Qur'an. Much of it was memorized by his closest companions. During his life, some of it was written down.
The original written Qur'an was basically compiled by one man, named Zaid bin Thabit, under the 3rd Caliph's (Uthman) direction. His final recension of Qur'anic material became the official Qur'an.
During Muhammad's life the Qur'an was not compiled as a complete codex. There was no collected, collated, arranged body of material of his revelations. Portions of it were written, but it did not exist as a complete book.
Following his death, several prominent Muslims wrote their own Qur'ans. In the Hadith, it is recorded that Muhammad himself had recommended several men to learn the Qur'an from: "Narrated Masruq: Abdullah bin Masud was mentioned before Abdullah bin Amr who said, "That is a man I still love, as I heard the prophet saying 'Learn the recitation of the Qur'an from four: from Abdullah bin Masud - he started with him - Salim, the freed slave of Abu Hudhaifa, Mu'adh bin Jabal, and Ubai bin Ka'b'". Sahih al-Bukhari vol. 5, p. 96
Two of them mentioned were Abdullah Ibn Mas'ud and Ubay Ibn Ka'b (these men figure into the story later). Other knowledgeable Muslims used these Qur'ans as a basis for their own Qur'ans. For the most part these were in agreement. However, there were distinct textual differences between them, and Zaid's Qur'an.
INITIAL COLLECTION OF THE QUR'AN
After Muhammad's death, several tribes that had accepted Islam revolted and wanted to leave the Islamic fold. The man who succeeded Muhammad as the supreme Islamic leader (Caliph) was Abu Bakr. He dispatched several armies to forcibly bring these rebellious tribes back into submission. The first two armies were soundly defeated, the third army, at the battle of Yamama, defeated the rebels. During these battles, many of Muhammad's closest companions, who had received the Qur'an directly from him, were killed. What followed concerning the Qur'an's compilation is described in the Hadith...
"Narrated Zaid bin Thabit: Abu Bakr sent for me when the people of Yamama had been killed. ....Then Abu Bakr said (to me): "You are a wise young man, and we do not have any suspicion about you, and you used to write the divine inspiration for Allah's apostle. So you should search for (the written fragments of) the Qur'an, and collect it (in one book). [Zaid replied] "By Allah! If they had ordered me to shift one of the mountains, it would not have been heavier for me than this ordering to collect the Qur'an." Then I said to Abu Bakr, "How will you do something which Allah's Apostle did not do?" Abu Bakr replied "By Allah, it is a good project"." Sahih al-Bukhari, vol 6, p. 477.
One thing is clear from this passage; Muhammad did not compile his own Qur'an.
Zaid's hesitation was derived from Muhammad's own disinterest in codifying the Qur'an, and from the enormity of the task in compiling the entire Qur'an. It was not going to be an easy task. If Zaid was a perfect 'hafiz' i.e. and had memorized the entire Qur'anic revelation and knew it by heart, and if there were still remaining a number of companions who were likewise perfect 'hafiz', then the collection would have been simple. He only needed to write it down and have the other perfect 'hafiz' inspect his work.
Many Muslims believe that these 'hafiz' had indeed memorized the entire Qur’an, but as seen from the following Hadith, this was definitely not the case, as Zaid describes the beginning of his task: "So I started looking for the Qur'an and collecting it from (what was written on) palm-leaf stalks, thin white stones, and also from the men who knew it by heart, till I found the last verse of Sura at-Tauba (Repentance) with Abi Khuzaima al-Ansari, and I did not find it with anybody other than he." Sahih al-Bukhari, vol 6, p. 478.
So, Zaid used what was previously written, and what had been memorized. He was a diligent scribe, who searched high and low for portions of the Qur'anic material. Some later Muslim traditions claim that Muhammad did compile his own Qur'an, and stored it in his own house, and that Zaid relied on these materials. But the earliest, most authentic records of Hadith literature state that Zaid made a widespread search for these materials. So there was no complete central repository of Qur'anic material.
There is another reference to Qur'anic material and the battles of surrounding Yamama. It is found in Ibn Abi Dawud's "Kitab al-Masahif", p.23: (This book deals with the Qur'an's compilation), "Many (of the passages) of the Qur'an that were sent down were known by those who died on the day of Yamama... but they were not known (by those who) survived them, nor were they written down, nor had Abu Bakr, Umar or Uthman (by that time) collected the Qur'an, nor were they found with even one (person) after them." It should be noted that although that Abi Dawud's work was compiled very early in Islamic history, and it deals with the collection of the Qur'an, it is not part of the Hadith.
The impact of the statement is that passages of the Qur'an were lost, known only to men who died during the battles. And, they were lost for good. A Hadith that does support the possibility that part of the Qur'an was lost states that even Muhammad forgot Qur'anic verses: "Aisha said: "A man got up (for prayer) at night, he read the Qur'an and raised his voice in reading. When morning came, the apostle of Allah said: "May Allah have mercy on so-and-so! Last night he reminded me of a number of verses I was about to forget.""" Sunan Abu Dawud, vol 3, p.1114. The Qur'an also references part of it being forgotten: 'None of our revelations do We abrogate or cause to be forgotten but We substitute something similar or better. Knowest thou not that Allah has power over all things?' - sura 2:106
MISSING VERSES FROM THE QUR'AN
Let's review this already quoted verse. "So I started looking for the Qur'an and collecting it from (what was written on) palm-leaf stalks, thin white stones, and also from the men who knew it by heart, till I found the last verse of Sura at-Tauba (Repentance) with Abi Khuzaima al-Ansari, and I did not find it with anybody other than he." Sahih al-Bukhari, vol 6, p. 478.
This verse shows that there were not numerous hafiz who had memorized the Qur'an. In fact, Zaid diligently searched until he found this verse with only one man. And it is probable that had this man not been found, this verse would have been omitted from the Qur'an.
Abi Dawud has a reference similar to Bukhari's, it shows that Zaid missed these verses completely: "Khuzaimah Thabit said: "I see you have overlooked two verses and have not written them". They said "And which are they" He replied "I had it 'directly' (he got these verses first hand from Muhammad) from the messenger of Allah (Muhammad): (these verses are sura 9, ayah 128): "There has come to you a messenger from yourselves. It grieves him that you should perish, he is very concerned about you: to the believers he is kind and merciful, (these verses belong at) the end of the Sura". Abi Dawud, Kitab al-Masahif, p.11. So, it was not Zaid who found them missing, it was Khuzaimah, who on his own initiative, pointed out that they were missing, and told Zaid where to place the verses in the sura. These verses were missed completely by Zaid.
ZAID'S Qur'anic COLLECTION FOR ABU BAKR
When Zaid finished the collection of the Qur'an for Abu Bakr, Bakr kept it for himself, for his own personal use. It stayed with him until his death, and afterwards, Umar kept it, and after Umar died, his daughter Hafsa kept it. Ref. Bukhari vol 6, p. 478. As mentioned, Bakr was the first Caliph, followed by Umar, followed by Uthman. No doubt Zaid's Qur'an was, for the most part, very accurate and authentic. However, this Qur'an was not made into the 'official Qur'an'. This Qur'an was kept for personal use by those who owned it. Hafsa was a recluse because Muhammad commanded that his wives not be allowed to marry after his death. This Qur'an became obscure; it was kept under her bed, some traditions say it began to be eaten by worms, but was later pronounced fit for use.
It is also feasible to assume that if Zaid's Qur'an was known to be 100% complete, accurate, and authentic, then Bakr would have given it immediate public prominence. Instead, it became a personal Qur'an. Zaid no doubt knew that other, better, masters of the Qur'an - Masud, Ubay, and others, had also compiled their own Qur'ans. It is understandable then that Zaid's Qur'an became obscure... there were better Qur'ans out there being used.
After Bakr's death, Umar became Caliph. After Umar's murder, Uthman became Caliph. During Uthman's time a Muslim general - Hudhayfah al-Yaman, led an expedition into northern Syria. There was a big problem concerning different Qur'anic recitations between Muslim troops of Iraq and Syria. Each region where these troops were from had their own Qur'ans, and these soldiers had memorized much of their respective Qur'ans. The quarrel became so intense that some soldiers went so far to even deny that what the other troops were using was even valid Qur'anic material! Hudhayfah, notified Uthman about it. Uthman became alarmed, foreseeing future discord.
Uthman took action, he did four things: 1) He announced in the mosque that if anyone had Qur'anic materials, to bring it to Zaid, 2) Uthman ordered Hafsah to send him her Qur'anic materials. (These materials were Zaid's earlier Qur'an). Bukhari vol 6, page 479, 3) He appointed a committee of three Qurayshi (Meccan) men to work with Zaid, to scrutinize all the material sent in, to accept only that for which two witnesses could be found, 4) When this recension was finally completed, he had it copied and the copies were sent to the great metropolitan centers, with orders that all other codii or portions of revelation material in circulation be destroyed. This time became known as "the year of the destruction of the codii". Many of the companions had bitter hostility against this. Masud said that "(Uthman) had obliterated the book of Allah".
Uthman wanted to standardize the Qur'an. The fact that Uthman ordered this drastic action of burning the other Qur'ans, against the desires of many prominent Muslims, shows that these had serious textual differences with Zaid's Qur'an.
Uthman canonized the Medinan text, (Zaid was from Medina, Muhammad was from Mecca), and prohibited the use of any other. Many of the Quarra did protest, and state that Uthman's Qur'an was in error, most notably, Ibn Mas'ud. Also note that often only one witness was found, so the committee had to wait for another witness to some back from the wars to verify it. Even then they couldn't agree where certain passages belonged in the collection = more confusion. This is one reason why some western scholars view the Qur'an as discombobulated.
During the work of his 2nd recension, Zaid found that he had made an error: "Zaid said "I missed a verse from al-Ahzab (sura 33), when we transcribed the written text (under Uthman). I used to hear the messenger of Allah reciting it. We (the committee) searched for it and found it with Khuzaimah (the same one as before). [It reads:] "From among the believers are men who are faithful in their covenant with Allah". So we inserted it in the sura in the text". - sura 33:23 This shows that Zaid's attempt to produce a complete codex was not entirely successful, and it was only after the other copies of Uthman's Qur'an had been made that the relevant verse was hastily included. Further, this verse was not included in Zaid's first recension. This is more proof that it was incomplete, and possibly inferior to the other Qur'ans in use.
Another verse has been called into question by Hadith literature: verse 2:238. In Uthman's Qur'an it reads "Maintain your prayers, particularly the middle prayer, and stand before Allah in devoutness". The variant reads "... the middle prayer, and the afternoon prayer.....". Muwatta Imam Malik, p. 64. This Hadith is from Aisha (several of Muhammad's other wives also made the same change to their Qur'anic material). She commented that her way was the way she used to hear Muhammad say the verse. She had her scribe change Uthman's text to read it as she remembered Muhammad reciting it. Abi Dawud's "Kitab al-Masahif" also records this variant. We also know that Ubay's Qur'an also reads in accordance with Aisha's edit. Further, we know that Zaid's original codex also was in agreement with Aisha's change.
At-Tabari's commentary on the Qur'an records that the people said to Uthman "the Qur'an was in many books, but now you have discredited all but one." Jami al-Bayan fii Tasfir al-Qur'an, 1.6.2952 Uthman's Qur'an is the product of a well meaning Caliph, and one (Zaid) approved authority of the text. Zaid's made an honest attempt, using his own discretion, as to what should be included or excluded in the Qur'an. But it was not perfect.
THE Qur'an OF ABDULLAH bin MAS'UD
Who was Masud, and what were his credentials to justify his collection of the Qur'an? He was one of the first converts to Islam. He was a Muslim before Umar (the 2nd Caliph) was a Muslim. He was the first one (besides Muhammad) to recite the Qur'an in public in Mecca. Masud had been on the hijrahs to both Abyssinia and Medina. He fought in both the battles of Badr and Uhud. He was a 'Companion' of Muhammad.
He diligently applied himself to learn the Qur'an by heart. There is much evidence to show that he was regarded as one of the foremost authorities on the Qur'an. He was definitely one of the most highly regarded Qur'anic scholars, as the following Hadith shows: "Narrated Masruq: Abdullah bin Masud was mentioned before Abdullah bin Amr who said, "That is a man I still love, as I heard the prophet saying 'Learn the recitation of the Qur'an from four: form Abdullah bin Masud - he started with him - Salim, the freed slave of Abu Hudhaifa, Mu'adh bin Jabal, and Ubai bin Ka'b'". Sahih al-Bukhari vol. 5, p. 96
Sahih Muslim also acknowledges that Muhammad started with him...vol 4, p. 1312. Masud was regarded as probably the foremost authority on the Qur'an. Note Ubay is also mentioned. Ubay also compiled his own Qur'an, well before Zaid's final recension. Also note that Zaid ibn Thabit is not mentioned in this list.
There is another Hadith that gives us further evidence of Masud's prominence in respect of his knowledge of the Qur'an: "Narrated Abdullah bin Masud: By Allah other than Whom none has the right to be worshipped! There is no Sura revealed in Allah's book but I know at what place it was revealed; and there is no verse revealed in Allah's book but I know about whom it was revealed. And if I know that there is somebody who knows it better than I, and he is at a place that camels can reach, I would go to him." Bukhari, vol 6, p. 488.
In a similar Hadith, Masud also says that he had recited more than 70 Suras of the Qur'an in Muhammad's presence, alleging that all of Muhammad's companions were aware that no one knew the Qur'an better than he did, to which Shaqiq, sitting by added "I sat in the company of the companions of Muhammad but I did not hear anyone having rejected that (Masud's recitation of the Qur'an) or finding fault with it" Sahih Muslim, vol 4, p. 1312.
Obviously, Masud had exceptional knowledge of the Qur'an.
When Uthman ordered that all other Qur'ans be burned, Masud refused to hand over his copy. By this time, Masud's Qur'an had become established in Kufa as the standard text, (and Ubay's Qur'an was the standard text in Syria) while Zaid's first Qur'an had become relatively obscure. Ref: Abi Dawud "Kitab al Masahif" p. 13.
Masud had always considered his text as authentic, as the word of God. Before the general Hudaifah contacted Uthman concerning the standardization of the Qur'ans, Masud and he exchanged words: "Hudaifah said "It is said by the people of Kufa, 'the reading of Masud', and it is said by the people of Basra, 'the reading of Musa', (another Muslims Qur'an). By Allah! If I come to the commander of the faithful (Uthman), I will demand that they (the various Qur'ans) be drowned! Masud said to him, "Do so, and by Allah you will also be drowned, but not in water". Ref: Abi Dawud "Kitab al Masahif" p. 13.
Hudaifah went on to say, "O Abdullah ibn Qais, you were sent to the people of Basra as their governor, and teacher and they have submitted to your rules, your idioms and your reading". He continued, "O Abdullah ibn Masud, you were sent to the people of Kufa as their teacher who have also submitted to your rules, idioms and reading". Abdullah Masud said to him, "In that case I have not led them astray. There is no verse in the book of Allah that I do not know where it was revealed and why it was revealed, and if I knew anyone more learned in the book of Allah and I could be conveyed here, I would set out to him." Note that this is similar to what's quoted in Bukhari.
Clearly, this dispute occurred because there were differences between the various texts of the Qur'an.
Regarding Zaid's Qur'an, Masud said "I recited from the messenger of Allah seventy suras which I had perfected before Zaid Thabit had embraced Islam. Abi Dawud "Kitab al Masahif" p. 17.
I acquired directly from the messenger of Allah 70 suras when Zaid was still a child, must I now forsake what I acquired directly from the messenger of Allah?" Abi Dawud "Kitab al Masahif" p. 15.
Ibn Sa'd's "Kitab al-Tabaqat al-Kabir, vol 2, p.444 (I think this translates to: The book of the great companions contains a reference also to Masud's protest of the order to burn his Qur'an: The people have been guilty of deceit in the reading of the Qur'an. I like it better to read according to the recitation of him (Muhammad) who I love more than that of Zaid Thabit. By Him besides Whom there is no god! I learnt more than 70 suras from the lips of the apostle of Allah, while Zaid Thabit was a youth, having two locks and playing with the youth".
Masud clearly regarded his text to be superior to Zaid's text (SOME OF THE VARIANT READINGS BETWEEN MASUD'S AND UTHMAN'S QUR'ANS)
The list of variants between Masud's and Uthman's Qur'ans fills up 19 pages. There are over 110 variants in sura #2 alone, and about 47 in sura #3. Also, Masud's Qur'an does not have the first sura, and the last two suras - #s 113, and 114.
Here are a few of the examples:
1) Sura 2:275 begins with "Allathiina yaakuluunar-ribaa laa yaquumuuna" = "those who devour usury will not stand". Masud's has the same words but adds "yawmal qiyaamati" = "on the Day of Resurrection". This variant is found in other Qur'ans, and Muslim sources.
2) Sura 5:91 contains the exhortation "fasiyaamu thalaathati ayyaamin" = "fast for three days", Masud's text adds after the last word an adjective "mutataabi'aatin.. meaning "fast for three successive days". This variant was also found in Ubay's Qur'an, and other Qur'ans.
3) Sura 6:153 begins with "Wa anna haathaa siraatii" = "Verily, this is my path", Masud's text says "Wa haathaa siraatu rabbakum" = "This is the path of your Lord". Again, other Qur'anic material also had this variant.
4) Sura 33:6 contains "wa azwaajuhuu ummahaatuhuu" = and his wives are their mothers", Masud's adds "wa juwa abuu laahum" = and he is their father". Other Qur'ans also have this variant.
5) In sura 112:1, Masud's omits the word "qul" = "say". Ubay's does also.
This is a small selection of the hundreds of variant readings between Uthman's and Masud's Qur'ans.
THE Qur'an OF UBAY IBN KA'B
Who was Ubay, and what were his credentials to justify his collection of the Qur'an? To start with, he was the fourth man mentioned of the men Muhammad mentioned to learn the Qur'an from: "Narrated Masruq: Abdullah bin Masud was mentioned before Abdullah bin Amr who said, "That is a man I still love, as I heard the prophet saying 'Learn the recitation of the Qur'an from four: from Abdullah bin Masud - he started with him - Salim, the freed slave of Abu Hudhaifa, Mu'adh bin Jabal, and Ubai bin Ka'b'". Sahih al-Bukhari vol. 5, p. 96
Ubay was Muhammad's personal secretary - 'ansar'. His codex was in use before Uthman's, he was a scholar of the Qur'an, his codex agrees far more with Masud's than Zaid's. In sura two alone, there are over 90 differences between Ubay's and Zaid's, and over 30 variants found in sura 3. The following Hadith also notes Ubay as a great reciter of the Qur'an: "Affan ibn Muslim informed us... on the authority of Anas ibn Malik, he on the authority of the Prophet; he said: The best reader (of the Qur'an) among my people is Ubay ibn Kab." Ibn Sa'd "Kitab al-Tabaqat al-Kabir, vol 2, p. 441.
In consequence, Ubay became known as "Sayyidul-Qurra" = "The Master of the Readers". (Those that recite the Qur'an). Ubay's codex also contained a vast number of readings which varied from Zaid's text, and they often agree with Masud's text. As already shown, Ubay's text agree with Masud's text, and differed from Zaid's. His order of suras was also different than Zaid's. Further, Ubay's Qur'an contained two suras that Zaid's Qur'an did not contain - "The Haste", and "The Separation". These two suras were found in the codii of Ibn Abbas and Abu Musa.
Here are a few more examples where his Qur'an agreed with Masud's and differed with Zaid's:
1) 2:204 - Zaid's - "wa yush-hidullaaha", Ubay's - "wa yastash-hidullaah"
2) 4:101 - Ubay omitted the words 'in khiftum' from 4:101
3) 4:143 - Zaid's - "muthabthabiina", Ubay's - "mutathab-thibiina".
4) 5:48 - Zaid's - "wa katabnaa 'alayhim fiiha" = "and We inscribed therein for them (the Jews)" Ubay's - "wa anzalallaahu alaa banii Isra'iila fiiha" = "and Allah sent down therein to the Children of Israel"
5) 17:16 - Zaid's - "amarnaa mutrafiihaa fafasaquu" Ubay's - "ba'athnaa akaabira mujrimiihaa famakaruu"
These variant readings show that the difference between the Qur'ans was in textual content, not in methods of pronunciation and dialect.
MISSING PASSAGES OF THE Qur'an
One early Islamic book that deals extensively with the compilation of the Qur'an is as-Suyuti's "Al-Itqan fii Ulum al-Qur'an". As previously quoted, many passages of the Qur'an were lost during the battles around Yamama. Suyuti states (p. 524): "It is reported from Ismail ibn Ibrahim from Ayyub from Naafi from Ibn Umar who said: "Let none of you say "I have acquired the whole of the Qur'an'. How does he know what all of it is when much of the Qur'an has disappeared? Rather let him say "I have acquired what has survived'".
One example as listed is (p.525): "The religion with Allah is al-Hanifiyyah (the Upright Way) rather than that of the Jews or the Christians, and those who do good will not go un-rewarded."
According to at-Tirmithi in his Kitab al-Tafsir, one of the sections of his Jami', (his collection of Hadith, which rates as one of the six major works of authentic tradition literature in Islam, alongside Bukhari and Muslim, and the three Sunan works of Abu Dawud, an-Nasai, and Ibn Maja), this verse at one time formed part of sura 98 - in the Qur'an. This is quite possible as it fits well into the context of the short sura which contains some of the words appearing in the missing text, such as 'diin', 'aml, and 'hunafa'. It is also significant to note that in 3:19, Zaid's text reads "the religion before Allah is Islam", Masud's reads "the religion before Allah is the upright way".
There are other early Islamic writings that say that Ubay recalled that there was a time when the sura 33 was the same length of sura 2, which means it is now missing about 200 verses. Significantly this missing section is said to have contained the verses commanding the death sentence for adulters, (to be mentioned later).
Another reference to a missing verse from Abu Musa, one of the early authorities on the Qur'an, and a companion of Muhammad is found in Sahih Muslim, vol 2, p. 501: "We used to recite a Sura which resembled in length and severity to sura 2. I have however, forgotten it with the exception of this which I remember out of it: "If there were two valleys full of riches, for the son of Adam, he would long for a third valley, and nothing would fill the stomach of the son of Adam but dust". Suyuti (p. 526) also quotes Musa as saying "We used to recite a sura similar to one of the musabbithaat, and I no longer remember it, but this much I have indeed preserved: "O you who truly believe, why do you preach that which you do not practice?" [and] "It is inscribed on your necks as a witness and you will be examined about it on the Day of Resurrection". These verses are found elsewhere in the Qur'an (many Qur'anic verses are often repeated in the Qur'an).
The last missing verse I'll address is that of the stoning verses. Umar is reported to have said the following: "Allah sent Muhammad with the truth and revealed the holy book to him, and among what Allah revealed, was the verse of the Rajam (the stoning of married persons, male and female, who commit adultery) and we did recite this verse and understood and memorized it. Allah's apostle did carry out the punishment of stoning and so did we after him. I am afraid that after a long time has passed, somebody will say 'By Allah, we do not find the verse of the Rajam in Allah's book', and thus they will go astray by leaving an obligation which Allah has revealed." Bukhari, vol. 8, p. 539. The Qur'an today says the punishment for adultery is 100 stripes (24:2).
The Jewish law also prescribes stoning for adultery. It is clear that Umar believed that the Rajam verse originally valid, was missing, and that adultery should still be enforced. AND, Umar did not believe that this verse should have been abrogated.
The earliest biography of Muhammad also states: "Verily stoning in the book of God is a penalty laid on married men and women who commit adultery, if proof stands or pregnancy is clear or confession is made.” Ibn Ishaq, "Sirat Rasulallah", p. 684.
Both Bukhari and the Sirat also add that Umar made mention of another missing verse which was once part of the book of God: "O people, do not claim to be offspring of other than your fathers, as it is disbelief on your part to claim to be the offspring of other than your real fathers." Bukhari, vol 8, p.540.
The Hadith of Muwatta Imam Malik (p. 350) illustrates Muhammad's actions concerning adultery: "Ibn Shihab reported that a man in the time of the Apostle of Allah acknowledged having committed adultery and confessed it four times. The apostle of Allah then ordered and he was stoned".
Suyuti relates the missing verse of stoning in the following tradition (p.524): "Zirr ibn Hubaish reported: "Ubay ibn Kab said to me, 'What is the extent of suratul Ahzab'? I said, 'Seventy, or seventy-three verses'. He said, 'Yet it used to be equal to Suratul Baqarah and in it we recited the verse of stoning'. I said, 'And what is the verse of stoning?' He relied, 'The fornicators among the married men and married women, stone them as an exemplary punishment from Allah, and Allah is Mighty and wise."
Umar did not believe that this verse was abrogated. In another Hadith he says "See that you do not forget the verse about stoning and say: We do not find it in the book of Allah; the apostle of Allah had ordered stoning and we too have done so, after him. By the Lord Who holds possession of my life, if people should not accuse me of adding to the book of Allah, I would have this transcribed therein: 'Ash-shaikhu wash-shaikhatu ithaa zanayaa faarjumuu humaa'. We have read this verse". Muwatta Imam Malik, p. 352. Umar went so far as to say he felt that this verse should have been added to the Qur'an!
The records of the Qur'an's compilation in the heritage of Islam, show convincingly that there were a whole number of different codii in vogue during the first generation after Muhammad's death, and that these all varied from one another. The adoption of a single text (Zaid's) came only twenty years after Muhammad's death. The original Qur'an is the work of primarily one man, Zaid, who admitted making mistakes, and missing verses.
Most of this was taken from two works by John Gilchrist (http://answering-islam.org/Gilchrist/Jam/index.html): "Jam' al-Qur'an - The codification of the Qur'an Text", and "Muhammad and the Religion of Islam".