One of my friends here in China wants to become a Christian and wants me to buy him an English-language Bible. My immediate reaction is "I should help; that's a good deed". However, as a Muslim, I'm having doubts as to whether or not this would be appropriate.

Question: As a Muslim, is it appropriate to buy a friend a Bible?

I can pick one up next time I'm in an English-speaking country. I'm not sure how much he will read (or is capable of reading). He's fully aware that I'm a Muslim.

I'm tempted to use this verse to justify it:

There shall be no compulsion in [acceptance of] the religion.... -- Qur'an 2:256

However, while I should make no attempt to obstruct his religion, I'm not sure if I should facilitate it.

  • No, it is not inappropriate. But remember, the Bible has ben altered so you are not helping your friend. How about giving your friend Qur'an as well? He can read both and decide about religion. – Abdul Sadik Yalcin Nov 6 '16 at 1:43
  • Just remember that if you tell them the Bible has been altered, make sure you give them proof of that, and don't just make an assertion without any evidence. – curiousdannii Nov 6 '16 at 1:47
  • Why can't you buy him/her Quran instead of bible.. – mmushtaq Nov 6 '16 at 9:05
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    @RebeccaJ.Stones you have to get a Quran for yourself :) :D it's magic – Mustapha Elbazi Nov 6 '16 at 15:41
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    I'm 80% sure if you want an answer based on a fatwa the answer would be rather negative (it's haram/makrooh not allowed). If you want an opinion based answer than it would depend on the purpose and intention. – Medi1Saif Nov 7 '16 at 11:03

According to my research, it seems that based on Shia scholars, keeping/studying such books (like Bible and so on) is haram. Because Bible is not the words of Isa (Jesus), meanwhile, during many centuries, the distorted Bible doesn’t conform to the reality. So, it can be a kind of distorted book which is not the right one.

Hence, buying such book(s) for everyone can be deemed as if you are helping him in starting/following wrong way, consequently, logically and canonically (based on Shari’) you’ll be partner of that (helping in misleading …)

Regarding 2:256, there are long explanations about that, but I strive to point it out very shortly (based on my mediocre knowledge). Actually, this verse’s concept can be this that:

Choosing the religion is not compulsory and actually it is done by the free will of the humans, but if we want to suppose ..., then creating heaven and hell would be a profitless act, and bringing us to this world (to testing) would be useless (and Allah would take us directly to the heaven without any testing).

As an example (I made it as a related example):

E.g. logically, you can pass the traffic (red) light (by your free will), (and is not a compulsory issue for you to stop behind that, because you have free will to stop/pass, otherwise you’ll be punished then for choosing the wrong way (passing the red light) by your free will. (God willing, my explanation/example can convey the concept of that.)


You ought not to buy such book(s) for anyone, since it can mislead them in the wrong way, and you’ll be a sort of partner in that helping. (And I assume your act can be a kind of confirming his wrong decision/act too). Good luck.


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