Wa `alaykum As-Salamu wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh
In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.
All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.
In this fatwa:
3- A Muslim man marrying a Christian or Jewish woman is required to set a good example for her and be an ideal model of a good Muslim who should always be good towards his wife.
Responding to your question, Sheikh Muhammad Al-Mukhtar Ash-Shinqiti, Professor of Political Ethics and Religions History at Qatar University, states:
He doesn’t have to force her to embrace Islam, since no compulsion is allowed in religion. But he should use wisdom without pressure or intimidation.
If she converts to Islam, then she has chosen the best way for herself and for him as well. She would be adopting the religion of truth, and he would get the reward promised in the hadith of the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him): “If you were to guide one person to the way of Allah, it would be better for you than the world and whatever is in it.”
But if she insists on remaining a Christian or a Jewess, then she has the right to keep her faith, and as the Qur’an states, he is to convey the message and it is up to Allah to judge the people.
Having said that, they should both agree on how he will be raising his children, and inform her that he wants his children to grow up as Muslims.
Almighty Allah knows best.
Editor’s note: This fatwa is from Ask the Scholar’s archive and was originally published at an earlier date.