As both Abrahamic religions, Islam and Judaism have the same God and share a common law then how do rabbis see the marriage of a Jewish woman marrying a Muslim man and vice versa? What about their children? Would they be Jewish as they have a Jewish mother? Please comment and explain.

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    Jews and Muslims have a common history, but we don't have the same law and whether we worship the same god is controversial. Feb 28, 2012 at 15:13
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    No, it is not permissible. Jews must marry Jews. Alex provides some sources, but the answer is simply no.
    – Seth J
    Feb 28, 2012 at 15:35
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    @MonicaCellio, Jews and Muslims ostensibly worship the same G-d. Maimonides believed such, and I don't think any Posek has ever questioned that (but I could be proven wrong). In any case, Muslims profess to worship the G-d of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and they believe in His unity, indivisibility, etc. They believe He created the universe and that Moses gave His law to the people. I don't know enough about Islam to comment on the rest, but it seems they meet our criteria to be considered upstanding monotheists.
    – Seth J
    Feb 28, 2012 at 15:39
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    @MonicaCellio (and anyone else reading), I just want to clarify that I agree with your first point about not having the same laws, and there are many other considerations involved. Jews cannot follow Islam (by that I mean that Judaism does not sanction it), but from the Jewish perspective, Muslims most probably worship the Jewish G-d. There are also many, many, many Muslims who want to kill many, many, many Jews. But that is a separate topic. When I wrote "upstanding", I meant purely in regard to their monotheism.
    – Seth J
    Feb 28, 2012 at 15:43
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    Ok, maybe it's not as controversial as I thought. :-) (This isn't an area I've studied, but I thought I'd heard that in several places, including this site. Perhaps not.) It's certainly true, though, that if Muslims and Jews follow the same God, they don't understand him to be telling them exactly the same things. Feb 28, 2012 at 16:22

3 Answers 3


For many purposes of Jewish law, Muslims are treated exactly on a par with members of other faiths.

Judaism doesn't recognize intermarriage - in either direction - as valid (Code of Jewish Law, Even Haezer 44:8); indeed, a Jewish man would have to be prepared to give up his life rather than have sexual relations with a non-Jewish woman (Shach, Yoreh De'ah 157:12). The same rules, then, apply regardless of the non-Jewish partner's nationality or religion.

As for any children from such a union, the usual rule applies: if the mother is Jewish then they are too, and if not, they are not.

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    I see! Then why Abraham(the first Jew according to Judaism) had sexual relations with Hagar who happened to be among the gentiles? Please explain.
    – Maxood
    Feb 28, 2012 at 16:06
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    @Maxood, That's worth asking as a separate question. But first, I recommend that you take a look at these three questions that deal with the question of how much of the Torah the Patriarchs were required to keep in general, and with respect to marriage in particular (although intermarriage, in particular, is not discussed there).
    – Isaac Moses
    Feb 28, 2012 at 16:19
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    Abraham was not fully Jewish, nor was his son Ishmael and his son's son Esau. The Jewish people only came into existence later.
    – LN6595
    Aug 11, 2016 at 0:01

This requires making a distinction between Jewish peoplehood & religion and the Jewish faith:

The Jewish faith is a universal one: strict monotheism combined with a basic set of moral & societal rules (the sheva mitzvos b’nei Noach, the seven Noachide Laws). Any human being that follows these guidelines is on the correct path. Islam has no special status here, except to the extent that it (and Unitarian Christianity) also teaches strict monotheism.

The Jewish people have a special role in this scheme; we are bound by a special Covenant with God and have many additional laws to follow. Anyone can choose to join us and take on these obligations, but once accepted these obligations may not be put down. (This is one reason Judaism discourages converts: it’s much easier to be a righteous non-Jew than an observant Jew.)

That said, marriage between a Jew of either sex and a non-Jew is not allowed. Husband & wife must be bound to the same covenant with God: either the general one for all humanity or the particular one for Jews.

In many circumstances, a non-Jew can convert to Judaism, joining the Jewish people, and marry a born Jew. Such conversions are often suspect, though, with the convert’s true commitment (and hence the validity of the conversion) sometimes in question. Many Rabbis will therefore be reluctant to convert someone who is in a pre-existing relationship with a Jew.

In case of a violation of these rules, when a Jew & a non-Jew have children together, Jewish Law considers the children to inherit their mother’s status: if she is a Jew, so are her children, and vice versa.

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    Because Jewishness is a matter of national identity as much as religious observance. Every member of the Jewish nation is obligated to observe the Jewish religion. A Jew who practices the basic rules of morality via Islam or any non-Jewish faith may be a wonderful person but is failing in his duty as a Jew. Mar 5, 2012 at 19:36
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    @Maxood, the question of why Judaism follows matrilineality is a valid one, but is too big to be discussed in comments here; ask it as a distinct question. Mar 5, 2012 at 19:38
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    @Maxood, the tone of your questions is making me wonder whether you want to understand or provoke. It is difficult to properly express nuances of speech online, so I shall give you the benefit of the doubt & try to answer your questions. Mar 9, 2012 at 14:13
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    @Maxood, re Judaism & Zionism: The “national identity” aspect of Judaism is distinct from Zionism. Jews, observant of Judaism or not, share a national identity somewhat similar (but not identical) to the Muslim concept of the Ummah. Zionism is one particular way of expressing this identity by seeking to live in a Jewish state in the land of Ancient Israel. If you want to understand the distinction better, ask for an explanation as its own question. Mar 9, 2012 at 14:21
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    @Maxood, re interest: There is nothing immoral about lending money with a reasonable interest rate. However, one of my duties as a Jew is to charitably lend to my fellow Jew forgoing this profit. See, e.g., this question or questions tagged lending-interest-ribbis. Mar 9, 2012 at 14:45

While it is not forbidden on a biblical level to marry fellow monotheists, it is forbidden derabanan to marry anyone who doesn't convert to Judaism.

  • Please source your answers (as already mentioned), otherwise they should rather be comments. Also make sure you add to what has been said before
    – mbloch
    Feb 13, 2023 at 3:21

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