Resolution of the Fiqh Council on Placing the Hand on the Tawrah or the Injil or Both of Them When Swearing an Oath Before a Court
All praise be to Allaah, Alone and may much peace and blessings be upon him after whom there is no Prophet our leader and our Prophet, Muhammad and upon his family and companions. As for what follows:
The Committee of the Islamic Fiqh Council has examined the question received regarding the ruling on a Muslim placing his hand on the Tawrah or the Injil, or both of them, when making a legal oath before the Courts in Non-Islamic countries, when the legal system therein requires it of the one swearing testimony.
The Committee considered the opinions of the schools of Islamic Jurisprudence regarding what it is permissible to swear to, and what is not permissible in swearing in general, and in swearing a legal oath before a Judge. The Committee arrived at the following resolution:
1. It is not permissible to swear except by Allaah, Most High, without anything else, according to the words of the Prophet (sallAllaahu `alayhi wa sallam):
من كان حالفا فليحلف بالله أو ليصمت
"Whoever swears, let him swear by Allaah or be silent" (Al-Bukhari no. 2679 and Muslim no. 1646)
2. Placing the hand on a copy of the Qur'aan, or the Tawrah or the Injil or anything else while taking an oath is not necessary for the validity of the oath, but it is permissible if the Judge considers it necessary in order to make the oath binding, and to make the one testifying fearful of lying.
3. It is not permissible for a Muslim to place his hand on the Tawrah or the Injil or both of them when swearing. The editions which are currently circulating are corrupt and not the original which were revealed to Musa or 'Isa, peace be upon them, and because the Law which Allaah, Most High has sent to His Prophet, Muhammad (sallAllaahu `alayhi wa sallam) has abrogated all previous laws.
4. If the judgement is in a country which rules by other than Islaam, in which it is incumbent upon the one who swears to place his hand on the Tawrah or the Injil or both of them, then the Muslim must request from the court that he be allowed to place his hand on the Qur'aan. But if his request is denied, he is considered to be acting under coercion, and there is no sin upon him in placing his hand on them or on one of them, as long as he does not intend thereby to glorify them.
Allaah is the Granter of success. And may the peace and blessings of Allaah be upon the best of His creation, our leader, Muhammad and upon his family and companions.