Could you tell me what Islam says about interfaith marriages? e.g christian girl – muslim man.
In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful
Assalaamu `alaykum waRahmatullahi Wabarakatoh
At the outset it should be understood that marriage is an important step and a lifelong responsibility. Realising the responsibility of such a major decision, one should select a suitable partner to fulfil this great Sunnat of Rasululahصلى الله عليه و سلم.
حدثنا مسدد حدثنا يحيى يعنى ابن سعيد حدثنى عبيد الله حدثنى سعيد بن أبى سعيد عن أبيه عن أبى هريرة عن النبى صلى الله عليه وسلم قال تنكح النساء لأربع لمالها ولحسبها ولجمالها ولدينها فاظفر بذات الدين تربت يداك
It has been narrated from Abu Huraira رضى الله عنه that Nabiصلى الله عليه و سلم said “Women are married for four reasons. (She is either married) for her wealth, for her lineage, for her beauty and for her Deen. Then be successful by (taking) a woman of Deen, (Otherwise) may your hands be soiled.”
From the above Hadith, the importance of giving Deen preference when selecting a partner for marriage is understood.
Shari’a encourages Kufu (suitability/compatibility) between the spouses in marriage. This compatibility is emphasized in Shari’a in the interest of both parties, as the spouses intend to be together forever. For a successful marriage they will have to be thinking and living alike, and this would only be achieved by having compatibility between them. After all, the purpose of marriage is to live in tranquillity and peace with a suitable spouse. If this is not achieved, the purpose of marriage would be defeated. A contributing factor to the breakup of marriages is the different outlook of either spouse, be it social, moral or religious.
Marrying a Christian or Jewish spouse poses many challenges. One of the biggest challenges in such marriages is the rearing of children. If the spouses should have children, each of them would want the child or children to follow their respective religions. Automatically this will cause an argument. If the husband is weak in his Deen, he will succumb to the desire of his wife and their children will perhaps end up going to church. Not only will the child be influenced in this way but the wife will take the child to her parents where the child will get used to their way of life and even end up eating non Halaal foods. Even worse would be the case where those grandparents actually influence the child against his or her own father because of dislike for his religion. The children in such a marriage sometimes grow up confused not knowing what to follow as they had seen their father practicing on one Deen and the mother practicing something else. By not having a sound upbringing, their whole life and their concept of marriage will be corrupted. In this case, the children cannot be blamed; rather this is the consequence of the negative atmosphere they were exposed to and the incompatibility of the parents. Sadly, in most cases, these marriages end in divorce. Many families have broken up in this way causing a ripple of social disruption; causing innocent children to suffer the unfortunate consequence.
In some cases the father is strong in his Deen and will have the upper hand over his children. Having a strong influence on the child and sometimes even on his wife.
If you acquainted with a Christian girl, it would be an extremely meritorious act to encourage her to embrace this Deen of Islam. However, this will be no easy task as there will be much for her to learn and sometimes, in some cases, if she embraces Islam only to make the husband happy, she may decide that Islam is not the way of life she had in mind and decides to leave this Deen.
On the other hand it would be highly advisable to marry a good Deeni girl who would not only be a wonderful wife but an excellent mother. She would be such a wife who would be regular on her Salaah and also encourage her children to perform Salaah; a wife who would give her children an Islamic upbringing and good manners and most of all, a wife who would treat her husband with respect and love. Therefore, ponder carefully over your decision.
And Allah knows best
Ml. Zakariyya bin Ahmed,
Student Darul Iftaa
Checked and Approved by:
Mufti Ebrahim Desai
Darul Iftaa, Madrassah In’aamiyyah