Are Muslims permitted to lie?
Muslim scholars teach that Muslims should generally be truthful to each other, unless the purpose of lying is to “smooth over differences.”
There are two forms of lying to non-believers that are permitted under certain circumstances, taqiyya and kitman. These circumstances are typically those that advance the cause Islam – in some cases by gaining the trust of non-believers in order to draw out their vulnerability and defeat them.
From The Qur’an:
Qur’an (16:106) – Establishes that there are circumstances that can “compel” a Muslim to tell a lie.
Qur’an (3:28) – This verse tells Muslims not to take those outside the faith as friends, unless it is to “guard themselves.”
Qur’an (9:3) – “…Allah and His Messenger are free from liability to the idolaters…” The dissolution of oaths with the pagans who remained at Mecca following its capture. They did nothing wrong, but were evicted anyway.
Qur’an (40:28) – A man is introduced as a believer, but one who must “hide his faith” among those who are not believers.
Qur’an (2:225) – “Allah will not call you to account for thoughtlessness in your oaths, but for the intention in your hearts”
Qur’an (66:2) – “Allah has already ordained for you, (O men), the dissolution of your oaths”
Qur’an (3:54) – “And they (the disbelievers) schemed, and Allah schemed (against them): and Allah is the best of schemers.” The Arabic word used here for scheme (or plot) is makara, which literally means deceit. If Allah is deceitful toward unbelievers, then there is little basis for denying that Muslims are allowed to do the same. (See also 8:30 and 10:21)
Taken collectively these verses are interpreted to mean that there are circumstances when a Muslim may be “compelled” to deceive others for a greater purpose.
From the Hadith: