Would a 50-year-old “Prophet of God” Have Sex with a 9-year-old Girl?

09 October, 2016
Q As-salamu `alaykum. While debating with a Christian group, they posed a question that caused great perplexity to Muslims in California. It is related to the Prophet’s marriage to `A’ishah (may Allah be pleased with her). Here, an author of a flyer they had, as well as the Christian group posed this question: Would a 50-year-old “Prophet of God” have sex with a 9-year-old girl?


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.

Dear questioner, thank you very much for having confidence in us, and we hope our efforts, which are purely for Allah’s Sake, meet your expectations.

Before answering your question, we would like first to state that through the centuries, the enemies of Islam have advanced numerous accusations and far-fetched theories to discredit Islam and its last Prophet, Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him). Praise be to Allah alone, all such accusations have been successfully refuted by the Muslim Ummah. It is no wonder that we see a group of some Christians reinventing accusations against the noble character of the Prophet about his marriage to young `A’ishah (may Allah be pleased with her).

Answering your question, Dr. Muzammil H. Siddiqi, former President of the Islamic Society of North America and Director of the Islamic Society of Orange County, Garden Grove, California, states: 

The author of this flyer attacks the character of Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) by using these words, “Prophet of God having sex with a 9-year-old girl.” He is trying to confuse his readers as if the Prophet was not married to this girl or married her against her will. The Prophet’s wife `A’ishah (may Allah be pleased with her) was indeed young, but he married her according to the traditions of his people at that time.

`A’ishah was most pleased with this marriage. She became his best supporter and learned much of Islam from him. She was a great teacher for many women and men of her time. Her parents were very pleased with this marriage. Historically, it is not confirmed that she was 9 years old when she came in the household of the Prophet.

There are various reports from age 9 to age 24. Her maturity, knowledge, intelligence, and contributions during the life of the Prophet and afterwards all indicate that she was either an exceptional nine-year-old or must have been older than that.

Whatever the case may be about her age, one thing is certain: she was a most compatible spouse of Prophet Muhammad. None of the contemporaries of the Prophet, his friends or foes, are reported to be surprised by this marriage or made objections to it.

The author should read his own Bible and ask himself how fair he is in judging Prophet Muhammad with one standard and his own prophets with another. If he thinks that a Prophet of God should not have a very young wife, then he should also reject Abraham as God’s Prophet. If he cannot accept a 50-year-old Prophet of God having a 9-year-old wife (though I do not agree that she was 9), then he should also not accept an 86-year-old Prophet of God who slept with a young maiden of his own wife without marrying her, as the Bible says (see Genesis 16:1-16).

He should then reject all the Prophets who came in the line of Prophet Abraham, including Jesus. He should also reject the whole Bible, Old and New Testament, because they both praise Abraham as a great person.

We as Muslims, of course, honor Prophet Ibrahim (peace and blessings be upon him) and respect his marriage to Hajar (may Allah be pleased with her). She was the honored mother of Prophet Isma`il (peace and blessings be upon him and upon all the Prophets of God).

Almighty Allah knows best.