I assume or rather see, some scholars discourage Muslim men from marrying outside of the faith and surely for obvious reasons and I understand that perfectly. However, seeing how the Quran allows us Muslims men to marry from the people of the book, does it justify the scholars who are actively discouraging this practice?

In addition, one can speculate that there must be certain reasons as to why Allah allowed Muslims men to marry interreligiously. However, one can not ignore how inter-religious marriages can be complicated. So what significance or reason can we consider, Islamically, when it comes to the ruling of inter-religious marriage?

  • 1
    It is permissible but certainly not recommended.
    – Medi1Saif
    Commented Sep 20, 2020 at 20:27

1 Answer 1


Inter-religious marriage is forbidden in Islam (Quran 2:221, Quran 60:10). There is only an exception in this rule which is that the marriage of a Muslim man to a Jewish or Christian woman is permitted.

Even such a marriage is not however encouraged under ordinary circumstances, rather the scholars among the Malikis, Hanafis, Shafi'is and Hanbalis have classed it as makruh or khilaf al-awla. Among the reasons for it:

  • Marriage calls for affection, however it is detestable for a Muslim to develop affection towards one who is hostile to Islam. This would especially be the case for a Harbi.

    لا تجد قوما يؤمنون بالله واليوم الآخر يوادون من حاد الله ورسوله ولو كانوا آباءهم أو أبناءهم أو إخوانهم أو عشيرتهم

    You will not find a people who believe in Allah and the Last Day having affection for those who oppose Allah and His Messenger, even if they were their fathers or their sons or their brothers or their kindred.

    Quran 58:22 also 60:4

  • There is a risk that the non-muslim wife will influence the children and husband towards Kufr.

    أولئك يدعون إلى النار

    Those invite [you] to the Fire

    Quran 2:221

  • Muhammad ﷺ did not do it, rather it was forbidden to him.

    نهي رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم عن أصناف النساء إلا ما كان من المؤمنات

    Women were prohibited for the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) except for the believing women


  • It was disapproved by a group of the Sahaba. It is narrated that when some of them performed such marriages, Umar ibn al-Khattab told them to give divorce.

  • Religion is the primary quality that is desirable in a spouse. A disbeliever is on the opposite end of the spectrum so it is understood that she is not recommended.

    نكح المرأة لأربع: لمالها ولحسبها وجمالها ولدينها، فاظفر بذات الدين

    A woman may be married for four things: her wealth, her lineage, her beauty and her religion. Choose the one who is religious.


  • A non-muslim wife can consume haram food such as eating pork and drinking wine. If she is pregnant or suckles an infant then the Muslim child will be nourished by haram foods. If she dies in pregnancy then a Muslim fetus will be buried in the graveyard of the disbelievers. All of these are harms inflicted on a Muslim child because of such a marriage. The remnants of haram food (such as smell or taste) can also reach the Muslim husband when he lies with her or kisses her.

  • There are a number of unmarried Muslim women who remain unmarried because they don't receive proposals, it is their right upon the Muslim men that they should be married rather than others.

Reference: الفقه الإسلامي وأدلته

  • So under what circumstance should it be recommended? In fact, what was the significance of Allah allowing men to marry outside of the faith while considering how many scholars detest the idea of it Commented Sep 21, 2020 at 12:09
  • @EPICTubeHD Because people have different circumstances, some of them would benefit from the concession and be harmed by its absence. One may be in a foreign country where no Muslim women are available. Or one may come across a righteous woman who is inclined towards Islam and it is expected that she will convert after marriage. You seem to be under the false impression that Allah making something permissible equates to it being desirable. Whereas there are several matters which are permitted but not encouraged, Is divorce not permitted? Is it encouraged or discouraged?
    – UmH
    Commented Sep 22, 2020 at 9:50
  • I see. Thank you for your comment, it certainly cleared my confusion. Commented Sep 23, 2020 at 21:18

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