There is a difference between saying something is kufr and making takfiir for specific individuals. One of my sħaykħs’ way in these matters is to give the rules, without commenting on specifics. So if you told him, “but what if one said so and so, or did so and so,” or “someone said this,” he will simply repeat the rule. Otherwise it becomes a waste of time, and a source for generating satanic whispers with 100s of people coming with 100s of questions. I try to follow his way and I won’t be commenting on individual sayings or statements.
Moreover, I can tell you for a fact that when he reads Al-Ĥaasħiyah in public lessons, and comes to the statement which states that it is permitted to write Qur’aan with blood for healing purposes, he reads a fatwa which states that it is kufr to believe this. Yet far be he from saying that the author of the Ĥaasħiyah, Ibn ˆAabidiin, is a kaafir! Why? Because finding this in a book attributed to him does not necessarily mean that he said it, and because we think well of him, and do not believe he would say something like that.
I have no certain knowledge that any scholars said that for Aļļaah to say something untrue belongs to the possible category of things, and neither do you. I do not even have two witnesses, which is a requirement for takfiir if one did not witness it directly. Forgeries and slips of the pen are very real possibilities (remember Ibn ˆArabiyy?), and we still have the possibility that a scholar might slip. The Ummah as a whole is protected, and the Prophet of course, but not individuals. The comment of Al-Fakhr Ar-Raaziyy comes to mind about the ĥadiith which states about Ibrahim having told 3 lies, “I’d rather call all of the narrators liars, than saying that Prophet Ibrahim lied.” Remember that taqliid (imitating others) is of no benefit in Aqiidah matters. What you are saying is, “since these scholars might have said this, (because you don’t know that,) I am not going to say it is kufr,” even though you know without a doubt it is an ugly thing to say about Aļļah. You can do better than that.
Al-Imam An-Nawawiyy says that one is not allowed to rely on reading books of fatwa, even if one finds the same answer in several books. Ibn ˆAabidiin mentions this in Rasm Al-Muftiyy, so quotes in books are of limited value even in fiqh, so what about ˆaqiidah? Reading books without a solid Sħaykħ, or his prior training, is very dangerous. How to decide who is solid? Well, you can begin by finding out what he says about attributing the possibility of lying to Aļļaah! And if that is not a criteria, then enlighten me in terms of what would be.
One more thing, even IF it was not kufr, which I do not accept, saying this still shows a silly mind that stumbles in basics of ˆAqiidah science. Someone that correctly says that Aļļaah is not in time, and does not change, and that everything is predestined, and that His knowledge is perfect, and that His Kalam is not created, but a must, and pertains to what His knowledge pertains to, but then turns around and says (incorrectly) that it also pertains to lying, and adds that lying is possible (and not a must – which would mean that the kalaam would have to be created in the first place)! A person that self-contradictory cannot be considered to know belief science, let alone be an imam by any reasonable standard, so what would you achieve by saying it is not kufr? It might also be said that you have a choice between saying he is an idiot or a kaafir, and if idiot is the only other option, then why not just go with the obvious, which is to say “kaafir,” because he has insulted Aļļaah while thinking himself clever, and making takfiir for an idiot who does this is unproblematic.
You won’t save our view of scholars who have calamities in books attributed to their name by saying it is not kufr, because idiocy or deviance are the only other options. The only way out is to say that it is a forgery, or a slip of the pen (they had something in mind, but wrote something else by mistake), or in some cases, where it is not far fetched, you can make ta’wiil. This is the sensible way to deal with this, not blindly accepting words found in books.