Praise be to Allaah.
Before answering this
question, you have to understand that your Prophet Muhammad (peace and
blessings of Allaah be upon him) has encouraged you to make a good choice
when choosing a wife, the righteous wife whom the husband can trust with his
children, house and wealth. It was narrated from Abu Hurayrah (may Allaah be
pleased with him) that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be
upon him) said: “Women may be married for four things: their wealth, their
lineage, their beauty and their religious commitment. Choose the one who is
religiously-committed, may your hands be rubbed with dust (i.e., may you
prosper).” Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 4802; Muslim, 1466.
This advice from the
Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) does not mean
choosing between a Muslim woman and a kitaabi woman (a Jewish or Christian
woman), rather it means choosing from among Muslim women, because if not
every Muslim woman is recommendable for marriage, then it is more likely
that it is inadvisable to marry a non-Muslim woman, a Jew or Christian. The
issue with regard to marrying them is that it is simply permitted in Islam.
Undoubtedly marriage to a righteous Muslim woman will help the Muslim to
obey his Lord and help in raising righteous children.
Shaykh Muhammad ibn Saalih
al-‘Uthaymeen (may Allaah have mercy on him) said:
Muslim woman will help him to obey Allaah and will be good to raise his
children, and protect herself in his absence, and protect his wealth and his
house, unlike a woman who is not religiously-committed, who may harm him in
the future. Hence the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon
him) said: “Choose the one who is
religiously-committed.” If along with religious commitment there is
also beauty, wealth and good lineage, then that is light upon light.
Otherwise, what he should choose is the one who is religiously-committed.
Marriage to a kitaabi woman
– whether Jewish or Christian – is permissible in principle, and there
should be no difference of opinion concerning that, because it is stated in
the Book of Allaah. But the Muslim should pay attention to the conditions of
that permissibility, and think of the consequences of that marriage. One of
the conditions of marriage to kitaabi women is that the woman should be
truly Christian or Jewish, because in the kaafir lands there are many women
who have no religion at all, or women who are Buddhists or follow other
idolatrous religions. The second condition is that she should be chaste, and
not a zaaniyah (one who engages in fornication or adultery); she should not
make friends with non-mahram men. Another condition is that guardianship of
the children should belong to the Muslim, and they should be raised in
accordance with the Book of Allaah and the Sunnah of His Prophet (peace
and blessings of Allaah be upon him).
Allaah says (interpretation
of the meaning):
lawful to you this day are At‑Tayyibaat [all kinds of Halaal (lawful) foods,
which Allaah has made lawful (meat of slaughtered eatable animals, milk
products, fats, vegetables and fruits)]. The food (slaughtered cattle,
eatable animals) of the people of the Scripture (Jews and Christians) is
lawful to you and yours is lawful to them. (Lawful to you in marriage) are
chaste women from the believers and chaste women from those who were given
the Scripture (Jews and Christians) before your time when you have given
their due Mahr (bridal-money given by the husband to his wife at the time of
marriage), desiring chastity (i.e. taking them in legal wedlock) not
committing illegal sexual intercourse, nor taking them as girlfriends”
Even though it is
permissible if these conditions are met, it is better not to marry her.
The scholars of the
Standing Committee for Issuing Fatwas said:
It is permissible for the
Muslim to marry a kitaabi woman – Jewish or Christian –if she is chaste and
free (i.e., not a slave), because Allaah says (interpretation of the
meaning): “Made lawful to you this
day are At‑Tayyibaat…”
But not marrying her is
better and safer for the believer, lest she attract him and his children to
her religion. End quote.
Shaykh ‘Abd al-‘Azeez ibn
Baaz, Shaykh ‘Abd al-Razzaaq ‘Afeefi, Shaykh ‘Abd-Allaah ibn Ghadyaan,
Shaykh ‘Abd Allaah ibn Qa’ood
al-Daa’imah (18/314, 315).
See also the answer to
question no. 2527.
With regard to the
consequences of marrying kitaabi women, there are many. We have mentioned
some of them in the answers to questions no.
With regard to keeping dogs
in the house and the prohibition on that, it is narrated in clear saheeh
texts. It is not permissible to keep dogs except for hunting, guarding
livestock, or farming. The Muslim knows that sharee’ah only forbids a thing
because of its evil and harm.
All the Muslim has to do is
to respond to what his Lord has enjoined him to do or forbidden him. He
should know for certain that He does not prescribe anything unless it is for
a reason. Some shar’i rulings are purely the matter of worship, and we do
not know the wisdom behind them and the reason of some is rationally
understood. There is nothing to prevent us seeking the wisdom behind
rulings, but the Muslim should still heed the commands of Allaah.
See also the answer to
question no. 9603 for important information.
We are certain that the
prohibition on keeping dogs is in the Muslim’s interests, and that keeping
them is harmful and bad. Among the negative consequences of keeping them are
the diseases that they cause and that are transmitted via them, whether it
is from a vessel from which the dog has drunk, or in its faeces with which
the house in which it is kept is contaminated. This is what you can tell
this Christian woman if you marry her.
It was narrated that Abu
Hurayrah (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: The Messenger of Allaah
(peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “The purification of the
vessel of one of you, if a dog licks it, is to wash it seven times, the
first time with dust.” Narrated by Muslim (279).
The word “purification”
indicates that the vessel becomes impure (najis) if a dog licks it. This is
what has been proven by modern science, but we never doubted that it is
true. The vessel can only be purified by water and dust, and not any other
cleaning substance. This has also been proven by modern science, which
confirms that this religion is nothing other than revelation that was sent
to the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him).
See also the answer to
question no. 20939.
It has been proven that
there are many diseases that may be caught by the person who keeps a dog, or
touches it, or kisses it. We have mentioned some of them in the answer to
question no. 69840.
And Allaah knows best.