Quranic law for marriage
Often the question is posed about the rules for Muslims in marrying non-Muslims. Many scholars have been advocating rules that are in direct violation of God’s clear law in the Quran. Sadly, and in male orientated cultures we hear the claim that a Muslim man may marry a woman of other religions (e.g. a Christian or Jewish woman), but a Muslim woman cannot marry except a Muslim man! They explain this obvious male biased innovation by a number of un-Quranic justifications. Some say that this priviledge is given to the man because the child takes the religion of his father and not his mother, and thus a Muslim man may marry a non Muslim woman but still have the child raised as a Muslim, while as if a Muslim woman married a Christian man for example, the child would be raised as a Christian.
But is this what God really decreed for marriage to non-Muslims in the Quran?
The answer is NO !
To detail God’s law in the Quran let us read the following:
“Do not (you men) marry idolatresses unless they believe; a believing woman is better than a idolatress, even if you like her. Nor shall you (women) marry idolatrous men, unless they believe. A believing man is better than an idolater, even if you like them.” 2:221
From this verse it is clear that a Muslim man, or Muslim woman are not allowed to marry a Christian woman/man who is an idol worshipper. The Law is clear and it applies to men and women equally.
On the other hand a Muslim man or a Muslim woman may marry a Christian, or a follower of a Scripture (e.g. Jews) as long as they are monitheist and do not worship idols besides God. This is confirmed by the following verse which states that not all people of the Scripture (Ketab) are idol worshippers:
“Surely, some followers of the previous scriptures do believe in God, and in what was revealed to you (O Muhammad), and in what was revealed to them. They reverence God and they never trade away God’s Revelations for a cheap price. These will receive their recompense from their Lord. God is the most prompt judge.” 3:199
So to sum up, the criteria in the prohibition of marriage to people who are non Muslim is confined to prohibiting marriage to those among them who are idol-worshippers, moreover, the law here applies to Muslim men and women equally.
The Quranic Truth
Many Muslims talk about what they call “Halal Meat” without even knowing their Quranic criteria. Most of those who arrive to the USA or Europe from other countries, or those who convert to Islam (Submission) in western countries, are usually faced by some Muslims who tell them, “do not eat but the ‘Halal meat’ .” So what do they really mean by Halal meat? and how does their concept agree with the Quranic meaning of the word?
The Quran teaches that God is extremely displeased with those who prohibit anything that was not specifically prohibited in the Quran, See 16:112-116. The upholding of any prohibitions not specifically mentioned in the Quran is tantamount to idolatry, See 6:142-152. Such prohibitions represent some other god(s) beside God. If you worship God Alone, you will uphold His Laws ALONE and honor the commandments and prohibitions instituted by HIM ALONE.
God very clearly mentioned in the Quran what is prohibited from the food and meat. See 2:173, 5:3, 6:145 and 16:115. From these verses you can know what is Halal (lawful) meat and what is haram (prohibited).
“He only prohibits for you the eating of animals that die of themselves (without human interference), blood, the meat of pigs, and animals dedicated to other than GOD. If one is forced (to eat these), without being malicious or deliberate, he incurs no sin. GOD is Forgiver, Most Merciful.”[2:173]
“Halal Meat” as we know it these days, is a term used more often for commercial profits than religious observance. Those who call their meat Halal, are in some way insinuating that any other meat is not Halal, or specifically the meat in the general grocery (supermarket in Europe) stores is not Halal. They make more money on their products by selling it more expensive while deceiving the naive public Moslems into believing that their meat is the only Halal meat for the Muslims.
You do not need to guess hard to understand the MERCY of the MOST merciful. God Almighty knows many Muslims will be living in the middle of Christians and Jews and will be sharing their food and for this reason God told the Prophet Muhammed more than 1400 years ago, the following;
“Today, all good food is made lawful for you. The food of the people of the scripture (Jews & Christians) is LAWFUL (HALAL) for you……”5:5
These verses were revealed at a time when God already told us that the people of the scripture distorted their books and no-one can claim this verse spoke only of the early Jews and Christians. Indeed, the Quranic law is for all time and all people.
Moreover, God Almighty has also specified a very important criteria for His true believers, MENTION GOD”S NAME on everything you are going to eat. See 5:4, & 6:118-119,
“You shall eat from that upon which God’s name has been pronounced, if you truly believe in His revelation.” 6:118
“Why should you NOT eat from that upon which God’s name has been mentioned ? He has DETAILED for you what is prohibited for you, unless you are forced. Indeed, many people mislead others with their personal opinions, without knowledge. Your Lord is fully aware of the transgressors.” 6:119
Sadly, the corrupt Muslims have substituted God’s condition for making food lawful (which is through uttering God’s name on it before eating it) by a new un-Quranic condition of their own making. Somehow they have made slaughtering the ONLY lawful method of killing an animal for its meat. Needless to say, there is no such restriction in the Quran. As a result of this corrupt restriction, they insist that to make food Halal the name of God must be uttered on it before slaughtering it. The following arguments all show that this imposed restriction is false and that it is not part of God’s law in the Quran:
1- The first reason is that (unless you are a butcher ) you are not the person who slaughtered the animal …. and since the Quran is clear in holding people accountable ONLY to what they did personally, then the only certain way to confirm that the name of God has been uttered on the meat is for each person to utter God’s name on the food before eating it.
“Every human being is responsible only for his own works.” 53:39
2- The spiritual reason behind uttering God’s name on our food before eating it is given in 16:114. This is to constantly remember and be appreciative of God’s blessings on us:
“Therefore, you shall eat from God’s provisions everything that is lawful and good, and BE APPRECIATIVE OF GOD’S BLESSINGS, if you do worship Him alone.” 16:114
This act of appreciation for God’s blessings would not be genuine and heart felt if we rely on someone else uttering God’s name somewhere in the slaughter house.
3- By reading 6:114, we note that the command of uttering God’s name is related to what we eat in general and not just meat. The command in the verse means that we should utter God’s name on all food before eating it and not just meat. This includes fruit, vegetables, or even snacks like bisquits or peanuts … etc. Consequently, and since we cannot slaughter fruit nor peanuts, the only method to obey God’s law is to utter His name before eating all foods.
4- If we read 5:5, we note that God made it lawful for us to eat the food of the people of the scripture (Jews, Christians). But as the Christians in particular do not say the name of God before slaughtering, yet their food is lawful for us (5:5), this can only mean that the duty is laid on each of us before eating our food and nothing else.
God knows that one day these slaughter houses will be run by machines and computers. He assigned the responsibility to every true Muslim to mention His name on his /her food.
Sadly, we see many Muslims today, and because of their obsession with the restriction of slaughtering, buying and gulping what they are told is halal meat, yet when they eat other food (e.g. fruit or vegetables) they ignore God’s command to utter His name on it. Hence, and since they ignored God’s commands and followed man made innovations they in fact are eating a lot of food that according to the Quran is unlawful.