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Paper Information

Journal:   JOURNAL OF ISLAMIC STUDIES   WINTER 2007 , Volume - , Number 74 (QURANIC AND HADITH STUDIES); Page(s) 65 To 80.
 
Paper: 

A CRITICAL REVIEW OF THE QUR'AN INTERPRETER'S APPROACH TO THE CHRISTIAN RITUAL OF BAPTISM

 
 
Author(s):  TABATABAI SAYYID KAZIM, KHATAMI MASUMEH
 
* 
 
Abstract: 
In many of its verses, the Holy Qur'an has addressed "People of the Book" or pointed out their beliefs and customs. It seems, however, that the interpreters have in some cases spoken of those verses in a way inconsistent with reality due to their lack of accurate and comprehensive knowledge concerning their beliefs and customs. For instance, Almighty God has pointed to the Baptism Ritual in verse 138, Surat al-Baqara: "The baptism of llah, and who baptizes better than Allah?" Among the interpreters who have realized this notion, some like Farra' and Tusi have talked about "baptism of children" and others such as Zamakhshari, Maybudi, Nayshaburi, and Nasafi have spoken of "baptism of the Nazarene children in yellow water', whereas, neither baptism of the People of the Book is restricted to children nor is the water for baptism of a particular color.
In this article, the writers have critically reviewed the words of interpreters in the interpretation of "Sibgha" (as an example), and suggested that such interpreters as Zamakhshari have upon observing the Christians of a particular region baptizing their children in yellow water, attributed the custom to all Christians and the subsequent interpreters have repeated the same after them.
It may be said, therefore, that the theology of these interpreters is not well-researched, scholarly, and systematic. To compensate for this shortcoming, accurate, scholarly, and well-documented knowledge of the beliefs and rituals of "People of the Book" should be added to "fundamentals of interpretation".
 
Keyword(s): TAFSIR QUR'AN, HOLY QUR'AN INTERPRETERS, SIBGHA, BAPTISM, ZAMAKHSHARI
 
References: 
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