Keeping the Christians' company

Q 5: What is the ruling on eating, drinking, sitting, and dealing with a Kafir (disbeliever)? Does doing this put a person outside the pale of Islam

A: Eating, sitting, dealing with a Kafir for buying, selling, and exchanging worldly interests that do not harm Islam do not take a Muslim outside the pale of Islam. In addition to this, showing kindness to Kuffar (disbelievers) is not considered a sin as long as they do not fight or wage war against us because of our faith. Allah (Exalted be He) states: Allâh does not forbid you to deal justly and kindly with those who fought not against you on account of religion nor drove you out of your homes. Verily, Allâh loves those who deal with equity. It is only as regards those who fought against you on account of religion, and have driven you out of your homes, and helped to drive you out, that Allâh forbids you to befriend them. And whosoever will befriend them, then such are the Zâlimûn (wrong-doers - those who disobey Allâh). (Part No. 1; Page No. 432) However, the Prophet (peace be upon him) gave pledge to the Jews, exchanged benefits and dealt with them after the battle of Khaybar. The Prophet (peace be upon him) allowed them to cultivate the land there in return for half of the yield. He also ate from a shoulder of the lamb that was served to him and his Companions by a Jewish woman, who poisoned it to harm him (peace be upon him). Further, he (peace be upon him) accepted the gift of the Byzantine Emperor after the Battle of Tabuk and rewarded him for it. He also had a Kafir (disbeliever) servant who later accepted Islam. The Prophet (peace be upon him) also used to deal with Kuffar to convey Allah's Call to them, hold discussions with them, answer their questions, and other forms of transactions and dealings not harmful to Islam or Muslims in this life. Rather, dealing with them can be a means of conveying the call to Islam, establishing evidence, and benefiting Muslims in worldly affairs. It should be mentioned that the Prophet (peace be upon him) died while his armor was mortgaged to a Jewish man in return for some food which he bought for his family.On the other hand, sitting, eating and dealing with them in intimacy, brotherhood, love and loyalty are not permissible. Not only this, but it can also be considered an act of Kufr (disbelief) that takes one who consents to them and their religion, loves them, is faithful to them, and supports them against Muslims, outside the pale of Islam. I seek refuge in Allah (from this), Allah (Exalted be He) states, (Part No. 1; Page No. 433)  O you who believe! Take not as Auliyâ’ (supporters and helpers) your fathers and your brothers if they prefer disbelief to Belief. And whoever of you does so, then he is one of the Zâlimûn (wrong-doers). Say: If your fathers, your sons, your brothers, your wives, your kindred, the wealth that you have gained, the commerce in which you fear a decline, and the dwellings in which you delight are dearer to you than Allâh and His Messenger, and striving hard and fighting in His Cause, then wait until Allâh brings about His Decision (torment). And Allâh guides not the people who are Al-Fâsiqûn (the rebellious, disobedient to Allâh). Allah (Exalted be He) also states, You (O Muhammad صلى الله عليه وسلم) will not find any people who believe in Allâh and the Last Day, making friendship with those who oppose Allâh and His Messenger (Muhammad صلى الله عليه وسلم), even though they were their fathers or their sons or their brothers or their kindred (people). For such He has written Faith in their hearts, and strengthened them with Rûh (proofs, light and true guidance) from Himself. And He will admit them to Gardens (Paradise) under which rivers flow to dwell therein (forever). Allâh is pleased with them, and they with Him. They are the Party of Allâh. Verily, it is the Party of Allâh that will be the successful. And O you who believe! Take not the Jews and the Christians as Auliyâ’ (friends, protectors, helpers), they are but Auliyâ’ of each other. And if any amongst you takes them as Auliyâ’, then surely he is one of them. Verily, Allâh guides not those people who are the Zâlimûn (polytheists and wrong-doers and unjust). May Allah grant us success. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions.