Marrying Non-Muslims

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By Pure Matrimony -

Source : : ‘Garments of Love and Mercy’ by Dr. Abu Ameenah Bilal Philips.


Allah (Subhanahu wataala) prohibited marriage with the mushriks, males and females:
“And do not marry pagan women until they believe (in Allah alone). Indeed,a believing female slave (of Allah) is better than a pagan, even though she (the pagan) might appeal to you. And do not marry pagan men until they believe. Indeed, a believing male slave (of Allah) is better than a pagan, even though he might appeal to you. Those (mushriks) invite (you) to the Fire, whereas Allah invites to Jannah and to forgiveness, by His permission. ” 1

Every non-Muslim is a mushrik. This includes the People of the Scripture (the
Jews and Christians) if they worship anyone besides Allah (like Jesus or ‘Uzayr)
or hold other wrong beliefs about Allah (Subhanahu wataala).


Allah (Subhanahu wataala) made exception to the above rule by permitting Muslim men to marry Jewish and Christian women – with an important condition: they must be chaste,
which means that they are not promiscuous and have not previously had
illegitimate sexual relationships with men. Allah (Subhanahu wataala) says:
“This day all good foods have been made lawful for you; and the food of
those who have been given the Scripture is lawful for you, and your food is
lawful for them; and (lawful for you for marriage are) chaste believing
women and chaste women from among those who were given the Scripture
before you – when you have given them their due compensation – desiring by
that chastity, not illicit relationship or taking secret lovers. And whoever
denies the faith – his deeds have surely become worthless, and he will be, in
the Hereafter, among the losers. ” 2


Some of the companions took the position that the above permission only applied
to the “unitarian” People of the Book. They argued in regard to a Trinitarian
Christian woman, “What form of shirk is worse than her claim that her Lord is
Jesus?” For example,

‘Ali (radiallahu anhu) said:

“The Arab Christians’ slaughtering may not be eaten, because they do not hold to (true) Christianity besides drinking alcohol.”3

On the other hand, ‘Umar (radiallahu anhu) was asked whether it was lawful to eat from the slaughtered meat of a group of Jews who read the Torah and observed the Sabbath but do not believe in resurrection. He said:

“They are a group from the People of the Book.” 4

Ibn ‘Abbas (radiallahu anhu) said:“Eat from the slaughtering of the Taghlib 5 and marry from their women. ” 6

Az-Zuhri (rahmatullah alaihi) was asked about the slaughtering of the Arab Christians. He replied that it was lawful, and said:

“Whoever embraces a religion is considered one of its people.” 7

Ash-Sha’bi (rahmatullah alaihi) said in answer to a similar question:

“Allah has made their slaughtering lawful, and your Lord is never forgetful. ” 8

There are many other similar authentic reports from the salaf considering that the
Christians and Jews are from “the People of the Book” regardless of their beliefs.
This appears to be the stronger of the two opinions. 9


The condition of “chastity” does not usually hold in our time. A chaste woman is
one who has been preserved within her house like a jewel, never having been
involved in kissing, touching, petting, or any form of promiscuous relationships
with men other than her husband.

A non-Muslim woman has no faith that would prevent her from committing the
sin. Added to that is today’s open Western culture that has permitted zina with the
approval and encouragement of the parents and relatives. It is seldom to find a girl
pass her teenage years without being involved in sexual relationships. Virginity is
now a rarity among the Westerners.

Some people may ask, “What if a Christian woman repented from her former
promiscuous behavior? Would it then be permissible to marry her?” The answer is
that repentance is an act of worship specific to the Muslims. Its first condition is
ikhlas (sincerity) to Allah. How could a non-Muslim fulfill this? Her only
repentance, then, is by embracing Islam (for the sake of Allah, and not for

Even at the peak of the Islamic power and dominance, ‘Umar (radiallahu anhu) was against marrying from the People of the Book. Abu Wa’il reported that Huthayfah (radiallahu anhu) married a Jewish woman. Umar (radiallahu anhu) wrote to him, “Divorce her.” He wrote back, “If this is unlawful, I will divorce her.” ‘Umar (radiallahu anhu) wrote: “I do not claim that it is unlawful, but I fear that you (Muslims) will soon partake of their whores (if everyone takes this matter lightly).” 10

Jabir (radiallahu anhu) was asked about marrying Jewish and Christian women. He replied:

“We used to marry them during the times of fighting when we were with Sa’d Bin Abi Waqqas (radiallahu anhu) in al-Kufah. That was because we could then ).hardly find any Muslim women. But when we came back (from the fights),
we divorced them. ”11


In our times, the Muslims are weak and have the lower hand, even in their own
countries. If one marries a non-Muslim woman, he will not be able to enforce an
Islamic environment in his own house. He will see her wear the cross, pray to
Jesus, eat pork, and raise his children upon disbelief. This, by itself, is a major act
of disobedience that he would bring about for himself and his own offspring.
What sin is greater than this sin? This alone is a sufficient reason for the
prohibition of such marriages under the current circumstances.

The excuse that some people give, “This marriage is better than committing zina,”
is absurd. First, such a marriage is not permissible to start with. Second, its
outcome is worse than the worst outcome of zina.

Therefore, young men should fear Allah and only marry Muslim women who will
be good companions for them in this life and would help raise their children upon
Source : : ‘Garments of Love and Mercy’ by Dr. Abu Ameenah Bilal Philips.
1 Soorah Al-Baqarah 2:221.
2 Soorah Al-Maidah 5:5.
3 Recorded by ‘Abd ur-Razzak and al-Bayhaqi. Verified to be authentic by Mustafa al-‘Adawi
(Jami’u Ahkam in-Nisa 3:125).
4 Recorded by ‘Abd ur-Razzak and al-Bayhaqi. Verified to be authentic by Mustafa al-‘Adawi
(Jami’u Ahkam in-Nisa 3:126).
5 An Arab Christian tribe.
6Recorded by Ibn Abi Shaybah. Verified to be authentic by Mustafa al-‘Adawi (Jami’u Ahkam
in-Nisa 3: 126).
7Recorded by ‘Abd ur-Razzak. Verified to be authentic by Mustafa al-‘Adawi (Jami’u Ahkam in-
Nish 3:127).
8 Recorded by ‘Abd ur-Razzak. Verified to be authentic by Mustafa al-‘Adawi (Jami’u Ahkam in-
Nish 3:127).
9 Review Jami’u Ahkam in-Nisa 3:122-128.
10 Recorded by al-Bayhaqi and Sa‘d Bin Mansur. Verified to be authentic by Mustafa al-‘Adawi
(Jami’u Ahkam in-Nisa 3:122
11 Recorded by ash-Shill. (in al-Umm) and al-Bayhaqi. Verified to be authentic by Mustafa al-‘Adawi (Jami’u Ahkam in-Nisa 3:124).

38 Comments to Marrying Non-Muslims

  1. Assalam Alaykum. I am a believing muslimmah. I am almost engaged to a non-muslim. I have not had any muslim suitor to ask for my hand in marriage and my age is advancing. I may marry him because there is no one else. What do I do?

    • Wa alei kum salaam sister, i have another sister whom i know and she is also in your shoes, i will advice you Marry a Muslim man , Even if that Muslim Man is a Drunkard, or a thief, or having done all the wrong things in this life.. he may be from lower strata of life or economically not doing good . this man will take you to Jannah eventually with your prayers he might be improve as you like. Even this man Does not improve and dies in that sate you will not be responsible for his deed you tried (Duas). But for a Non Muslim (He may be doing good intelligent .handsome, prince charming) but he will surely take you to Jannahm, in the hereafter. For a Muslim All our deed are according to hereafter , Please be ready to Marry a Divorcee, or be Ready to become a Second wife . but Marry a Muslim. .. I am not a Scholar. Just a Sincere Advice from heart.

      • So you are saying to this woman that even though she would wait to marry a muslim man who would eventually devorse her, beat her, verbally and mentally abuse her that its better than a non Muslim man who will potentially, be good to her, treat her well, give and care for her. That is an insult!..Oh yes so tell your woman to marry a drunken man who WHORES around himself before finding a man that cares for and deeply respects you and wont hurt you emotionally…If you haven’t read your statistics of the Muslim marriages and devorses your blinded….its more common now to divorse in muslin countries because of selfish men than in Westerners…

        • don’t try to make a point from something stupid, i even not agree the way that brother said, and then why don’t you try to understand a simple thing, it is not permissible in islam to marry a non muslim then what is the sense of that comparison of a muslim and nonmuslim man like should find a muslim spouse and marry him.that’s it..easy..and the one who disbelieve in God or make associate with him, is he better for her?there is no such sin as polytheism,making partner with one who gives you everything,and whom she should listen then to you? me and other human being where Allah is cleared something, you even not sure about your own decision that how beneficial that will be for you??, yes i do agree that we have wisdom and thats works but what i asked that’s also the reality…ohh…please try to ponder…may Allah guide us..Aameen

          • Im clearly stating the no woman needs to be treated unfairly through out life by a man that is a drunk and an abusive partner to her or her children. I myself would rather have my children marry an good man that doesnt abuse the sinful lusts of life than a muslim man who believe that sleeping with multiple women and drinking and abusing is ok. I Pray that Allah will protect any woman that steps in front of you and you offer them a man that disrespects them…(the best husband is a man that treats his wife fair)..How can a man that doesnt love god and protect his fellow muslim women follow alah words. He can not claim islam and therefor she should not marry him

      • “a thief, a drunkard” ??? perhaps you should not give such an advice. it is surely better to hold quiet or say: pray to Allah.

    • Waliykum As Sallam Warehmatullahi Wabarakatuhu

      Sister mistura Allah says in Glorious Qur’an –
      And do not marry polytheistic women until they believe. And a believing slave woman is better than a polytheist, even though she might please you. And do not marry polytheistic men [to your women] until they believe. And a believing slave is better than a polytheist, even though he might please you. Those invite [you] to the Fire, but Allah invites to Paradise and to forgiveness, by His permission. And He makes clear His verses to the people that perhaps they may remember.(2:221)

      so it is not permissible for you to marry a nonmuslim, even he have all the qualities, and test come in different ways in everyone’s life and we should fear Allah , so you should remain patience and pray to Allah that he will bring you a righteous spouse and then sister what is better for you the short life of this world or a life of hereafter, as a muslim our aim is the akhirah.

    • Soaring Bird

      Wa’alaykum. First of all, we have to acknowledge that we live our lives by choosing options, at least from two. It seems that here you have to make a choice between your faith and your love-life. My advice is to go for what you really hold most important. If they are equally important, the dilemma should be a reason to toughen the heart, hold back emotions. Start defining what is beneficial and what is not, and objectively weigh one out over the other. I can’t think of any other down-to-earth solutions, at least that’s what I did for my case.

  2. Salaam O Aleikum,

    What, that makes no sense what so ever. You are saying, it is better off marrying a man who has his own life in shambles, to ruin this woman’s life as well, just because the only thing he has going for himself is that he is Muslim?

    Mistura, you do what you think is right. If you find someone who is true and righteous, then that’s good enough. You follow your path, he follows his.

    If you think, a bad Muslim who didn’t follow a word of Islam is going to heaven before people who don’t follow Islam but are good people, then there is a serious confusion.

    Allah did not make Muslims 1st, he made human beings….people. You are going to judged based on your deeds and intentions. You can be praying 5 times a day without the proper intention, it doesn’t count for anything.

    Please don’t marry some idiot, just because he is a Muslim and that’s about it. That’s just absurd !!

    • i can not say better than this. the non informed muslims about their own religion should drop their ancestral traditions and go back and read the Quran and actually understand the meaning of God’s word. Please dont be misinformed and blame islam.

  3. With due respect I would just like to ask one qs related to this….. what if a Muslim boy continuosly follows, vows and convinces a non – Muslim innocent girl to get married to him.. and when the girl religiously believes, accepts and trusts all his words this Muslim man just shuns her and leaves her in shambles.. The chaste lady reaches the point of commiting suicide because her trust in the world esp. men in general is broken to the core…These are true cases which have taken place with my friends in front of my eyes….. The girls were virtuous, true, kind and totally committed to God in whichever form they believed but the Muslim men after vowing in the name of Allah, swearing by him and promising them left them in a mess…..In a previous quote it was clearly mentioned that “Prophet Muhammad – peace be upon him – said: “Treat women kindly, they were created from a rib, and the most crooked part of the rib is the highest part thereof; so, if you tried to rectify the rib it will be broken and if you left the rib as it is, it will remain crooked, and women are like this; therefore treat them kindly”. (Bukhari & Muslim)

    The girls were ready to get converted and would have taken care of their husbands much much better than women who are Muslims by birth.. I can vouch for it myself……. The almighty Allah created all creatures and therefore there should be justice for all…. What justice will the girls get in such a case?And what would become of the Muslim boys? Would really appreciate an answer……..

  4. Spoiling an innocent girl’s psychology forever by leaving her in shambles is worse than committing a crime(be it by any man in this world) ..esp when they are the ones who have helped you out always and helped someone come out of depression and the worst phases in life…… would these decent ladies ever be able to cope up with this situation, lead a normal life or love anyone more than themselves ever again ( even if they are married forcibly by family) … is such an action justified by The Holy Quran or The Almighty Allah?

  5. women of purity are for men of purity and men of purity are for women of purity…<<< ……..

    • i am yet not getting it what’s ur point?…obviously whatever he did is totally wrong and a major sin but you too have to understand all the muslim is not the same, you can’t judge every muslim and islam just because of the behavior of one non practicing muslim, you find this short of people in every religion and society, it’s nothing to do with islam, and he will surely get the return for what he did, firstly it is not permissible in islam to have boyfriend or girlfriend, this type of relationship is not permissible, then one who is not following the ruling of islam how can you expect him to follow other ruling of islam.

  6. Reply to C


    Look at the bright side , you found Islam , It is better than your ex-bf . Allah will give you a much better man if you accept and follow the path the He has shown you . Inshallah

    Your ex-bf was clearly wrong in what he did , but you have learned Islam through it . Now it is upon you to follow it and make the best out of what you can at present.

    I pray that Allah grant us all pious spouses and grant us Jannah Ameen

  7. what are the provisions to marry a non-muslimah?…If she brings her belief in Allah and brings Eman
    Can I marry her?
    I came across a non-muslimah..who is ready to accept Islam from her soul if I marry her…she will forget her past
    and her religion and will adhere to the boundries of Islam…..
    please suggest me what shall i do?
    If I marry her what will be the outcomes of that?
    I don’t want to get pulled towards Jahannm as no muslimah would prefer…..
    but, i wish to make her eligible for jannah…

  8. What if the Muslim woman is not chaste? You can never find out. And as I see the world around me, there are not many chaste woman in the Eastern world either.

    • ones has the obligation to conceal his or her sins. you should not ask, because to repent is what matter, and Allah in His majesty forgives when one asks for forgiveness, so if He forgives, the One who made the rules, so should you 🙂

      • Actually he can ask and he should ask
        he has every right to know.
        As the Qur’an states men of purity are for women of purity and vice Verca.
        Only a women who has a past with guilt would say that.

    • Asalaamualikum brother. Very respectfully I state that you have not apparently you have not understood the Quranic ayat 24:26 very well. “Women impure are for men impure and men impure are for women impure; and women of purity are for men of purity and men of purity are for women of purity: these are not affected by what people say: for them there is forgiveness and a provision honorable.” This is the ayat. If you are chaste brother, then Allah has written a chaste spouse for you, so no need to fret about it. If you are not chaste brother, then you do have the right to fret. Keep yourself pure and chaste, and leave the rest to the Almighty. If He can forgive your sins, He can forgive an unchaste woman too and make her as if she is chaste again. Wallahu aalam.

  9. Follow your heart Lady!…If at any cons elation if he truly loves you and wants to be with ou he can convert! Dont listen to these people who tell you that a drunken, abusive, disobedient, muslim man is better…He will run with the WHORES and possible infect you with a disease. Just because hes Muslim doesn’t make a a man a better person.

    • You sister need to educate yourself on Islam rather then listening to satanic whispers
      If you had any understanding about Islam then you would understand the reasoning. But unfortunately you’ve been feed the twisted idea of love by the Bollywood and Hollywood media. Which clear to that you do understand the purpose of a Muslims marriage.

  10. i want to support a cristian girl by marrying her aftr makin her muslim as shez ready to accept islam 1 year b4 marriage and practice it well bt shez nt virgin as she has been cheated by others so can i marry her and support her plzz reply im confused and even i dnt want to step back coz we sexually strtd relation

  11. Asalaamalaikum wr wb,
    I need some advice. I am a Muslim born girl who married a reverted man. Although being born to Christian parents he didn’t really have a religion as he was never taught. We started to talk and I found he was interested in Islam so I introduced him to my father and he started to meet with local imams and parb about Islam and then reverted shortly after my dad did my nikah to him. Now 5 yrs later he has changed he has for the last year started to consume alcohol again and although he is still a kind man he refuses to stop drinking alcohol as he only has one or two and doesn’t ever use it to get drunk. I fear he only reverted for my hand in marriage but now we have 3 children together I am lost what I should do . Should I stay with him and keep trying over years and years to convince him of the truth of Islam or will that be wrong Islamically? Do I ask for divorce? I really need to know what Islam would suggest in my circumstance

  12. i can’t believe that we are given a quote in which these men married non-muslims cuz they couldn’t find muslims, then upon returning they would divorce them. unbelievable!!! what does this teach us?? that those men only followed their own egoistic wishes, with no regard to those women lives, feelings, broken hearts. were they better that them, too good for them solely because they were muslims?!?! i think not. only Allah knows, but this is disgraceful. and then their muslim wives should obey them?? why were they marrying them? for the purpose of sex? disgusting. as i already said.

  13. Muhammad Asjad

    Dear All
    I request you all not to translate or explain the Quranic verses( Ayats) according to your own wishes and knowledge. Ask from those who know Islam, who have studied Islam like Aalim, scholar of Islam…
    @ Mistura… Dear sister if you have any query relating to any matter of Islam please contact your local scholar of Islam…These guys cant understand Islam in its true sense.Whenever one wants to take advice regarding anything he consults to the expert rather than any tom dick or harry. for example if you are sick you will go to doctor insted visiting a shoe maker or shop keeper arnt you….therefore when asking something about islam consult experts of Islam….
    Thank You

  14. I wish a believing Muslim brother would offer to marry her, for she is a Muslim, at least you would marry her for her religion. Brothers, please consider it…

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