The Messenger (sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam) said:
- 'A woman is married for four things, i.e., her wealth, her family status, her beauty and her religion. So you should marry the woman with religion, (otherwise) you will be a loser.'
Shaikh Saaleh Al-Uthaimeen (rahimahullaah) said:
A woman with Deen aids a man to obey Allaah, and his children nurtured by this woman will be righteous. She preserves his honour in his absence; she safeguards his wealth and his house as opposed to the woman without religion, for she will harm him in future. That is why the Prophet (sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam) said: 'so you should marry the woman with Deen'
And if (she) has Deen along with beauty, wealth and nobility, then this is light upon light/excellence upon excellence. But if not, then it is incumbent to marry the (woman) with Deen.
And if two women were presented to a man; one of them has beauty and is free from immorality or shamelessness, and the other is less beautiful but has more Deen, which one should the man choose? He should choose the one with more Deen. But sometimes people are madly in love with beauty; and when they know of a beautiful woman, they are not pleased with marrying someone else other than her even if that someone else has more Deen.
And some people say: 'I will marry a woman without Deen and perhaps Allaah will guide her through me.' We say to this person, 'We do not burden ourselves with the future, for we do not know what the future will be. It may be that you marry her and wish that she be guided through you, but she diverts you to what she is upon and you become grieved'.
On the other hand, a sinful man asks some people for a wife, and they say it may be that Allaah will guide him. We say; we do not bound ourselves to the future, rather we bound ourselves to what is within our hands at present; for it may be that this man you think will become steadfast may deviate and misguide your daughter, because a man has authority over a woman. And how many a woman adhering to her Deen gets married to a person whom she thought has Deen, and then it appears that he has no Deen and is put to great trouble through him. We always receive complaints from women regarding this affair, to the point that a woman may wish to run away from this man for the sake of preserving her Deen, even though she has no money with her. So for this reason, it is obligatory to be on one’s guard in these affairs, with regards to either a man’s or woman’s choice of a spouse for marriage.
Source: ‘Sharh Muntiq’ Of Imaam Muhammad Ibn Saaleh Al-Uthaimeen (Rahimahumallaah),
Translated by: Abu Mu-aawiyyah Abdullaah Al-Gambi