First may I say that if I say something that is offensive please know that it most definitely is not meant to be. I am only just beginning to learn of Islam and fear I may offend. In my country (the USA) I already knew more than many of my countrymen and it is sad to admit but I know almost nothing. My question is if a man swears under oath that his mother in law (not a muslim woman) did or allowed things to happen that he knows to be untrue is this wrong in Islam? I do not know if “God” was used in the oath but I was always taught if you swore an “oath” it was to God regardless. May I come back and ask more questions as I strive to understand Islam and the people who live it?
Any oath whether as a witness to bear truth or in a contractual situation must be committed to in all honesty. It does not matter who the parties are (e.g. Muslim or non-Muslim) it is imperative that the Muslim must give his oath or give a statement truthfully. Regardless of whether this swearing consisted of God’s name or not it is still binding. Any contract or agreement made, based on the free will of the person, has to be adhered to by the person. The Qur’an says:
O ye who believe! Stand out firmly for Allah, as witnesses to fair dealing, and let not the hatred of others to you make you swerve to wrong and depart from justice. Be just: that is next to piety: and fear Allah. For Allah is well-acquainted with all that ye do. – Al Ma’idah 5:8
Those who witness no falsehood, and, if they pass by futility, they pass by it with honourable (avoidance) – Al Furqan 25:72
As you can see there is no room for false testimony in Islam regardless of who the oath is made to or whether or not God is invoked. In all matters we need to strive to be earnest in our dealings and our vows.
I hope I have clarified the issue.
God knows best.