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O believers! Take neither Jews nor Christians as guardians—they are guardians of each other.1 Whoever does so will be counted as one of them. Surely Allah does not guide the wrongdoers.

Never will the Jews or Christians be pleased with you, until you follow their faith. Say, “Allah’s guidance is the only ˹true˺ guidance.” And if you were to follow their desires after ˹all˺ the knowledge that has come to you, there would be none to protect or help you against Allah.

I have two questions in this regard:

  1. Are these two verses universally applicable or just applicable in the contexts of the incidents for which they were revealed?

  2. If they are universally applicable, then why were Mushriks not mentioned, as Mushriks are worse (than Yahudi and Nasarah) as they are idol worshippers?

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  • Nasarah/Christians are mushrik/polytheist.
    – AbduRahman
    Sep 23 at 3:04
  • @AbduRahman, Not true. Christians are Ahl al-Kitāb.
    – user366312
    Sep 23 at 3:06
  • 1
    Read 9:30 and corelate the Arabic with translation. Here nasarah say that messiah is the son of Allah, and whose doctrine is that?
    – AbduRahman
    Sep 23 at 4:44
  • @user366312 Yes true. Allah literally described christians as those who do shirk (9/30) and according to Ibn Umar he does not know of a greater shirk than christianity
    – Hisham
    2 days ago

1 Answer 1

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Their ruling is universally applicable. There is no evidence to restrict them to a certain incident nor have any reputable scholars considered them restricted.

Mushrik can be used in a variety of senses, and in one usage Jews and Christians are Mushrikeen. The disbelievers among the Ahle Kitab are a sub-category of the Mushrikeen, not a distinct genus. See Do Islamic pre-modern scholars think the trinity is polytheism or not?

If you are asking about Mushrikeen in the sense of idol worshipers, then the verses also apply to them by analogy. And there are also other verses which include them directly:

  • Verse 5:51 forbids موالاة (friendship\wardship) with the Jews and Christians. There are verses parallel to 5:51 which are more general such as:

    لا يتخذ المؤمنون الكافرين أولياء من دون المؤمنين

    Let not believers take disbelievers as allies rather than believers.

    Quran 3:28

    يا أيها الذين آمنوا لا تتخذوا بطانة من دونكم

    O you who have believed, do not take as intimates those other than yourselves.

    Quran 3:118

    And all Mushrikeen (including idol worshipers and Zoroastrians etc.) are covered by these as they are not Muslims and are disbelievers. Verse 60:1 also carries the same meaning and in historical context was revealed regarding the idolators of Mecca.

  • As for 2:120, this verse means that:

    • The followers of religion X would not be pleased with you unless you follow their religion
    • If you adopt their religion you will be condemned to eternal damnation.

    There are verses which say the same more generally, such as:

    ولا يزالون يقاتلونكم حتى يردوكم عن دينكم إن استطاعوا ومن يرتدد منكم عن دينه فيمت وهو كافر فأولئك حبطت أعمالهم في الدنيا والآخرة وأولئك أصحاب النار هم فيها خالدون

    And they will continue to fight you until they turn you back from your religion if they are able. And whoever of you reverts from his religion [to disbelief] and dies while he is a disbeliever - for those, their deeds have become worthless in this world and the Hereafter, and those are the companions of the Fire, they will abide therein eternally.

    Quran 2:217

    قل إني نهيت أن أعبد الذين تدعون من دون الله قل لا أتبع أهواءكم قد ضللت إذا وما أنا من المهتدين

    Say, "Indeed, I have been forbidden to worship those you invoke besides Allah." Say, "I will not follow your desires, for I would then have gone astray, and I would not be of the [rightly] guided."

    Quran 6:56

    And all Mushrikeen (including idolaters) are covered by this, and in historical context these verses were revealed about the idolators.

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