Jews and Christians are redeemed in the Quran
The Quran states the following: “wa alladhina yu’minuuna bima unzila ilayka, wama unzila min qablika, wa bi aakhirah hum yuqinun” Quran 2: 5. Muslim commentators render the following interpretations. Translated: ‘and who believe in the Revelation sent to thee, and sent before thy time, and (in their hearts) have the assurance of the Hereafter’ (Abdullah Yusuf Ali).
This Quranic verse is addressed to those who: (a) believe in the Quran; (b) Believe in what was given to them before the Quran (i.e. the Old and New Testaments), (c) Believe in the Hereafter.
Unfortunately, the commentator inserted, erroneously, two words that are absent from the Quran: ‘time’ and ‘in their hearts’. By doing so, he changed the meaning of the Quranic verse. In Aramaic the verse reads the following: “w lz ymn bma nzl ‘laik wbma nzl mn qblk wbhrut hm yqnun”. The inserted word by the commentator: ‘time’ and ‘in their hearts’ is not part of the verse.
The Quranic word “unzila” has been interpreted as ‘came down’. Aramaic “nzl” means ‘turn the balance, drop’. The early Quranic manuscripts did not have the vowel signs /u/, /i/, and /a/. With the absence of the vowel signs, which were developed later, Aramaic “nzl” became ‘unzila’.
The Quranic word “qablika” has been interpreted as ‘before you’. Aramaic “qblk” means ‘before’. The word is found in the Bible 2 Kings 15: 10, Esther 9: 27, and 1 Chron. 12: 19). When the vowel signs were introduced late in the development of the Arabic alphabet, the Aramaic word “qblk” became “qablika”.
The Quranic word “aakhira” has been interpreted as ‘at the end’. Syriac “eharto” means ‘the end’. Arabic letter /h/ change to /kh/ be placing one point on the top of the former. The early Quranic manuscripts did not differentiate between the letters /h/ and /kh/ due to the absence of the points.
The Quranic word “yuqinoon” has been interpreted erroneously as ‘they realize’. Aramaic “qnh” means to ‘redeem’. The term is found in Exodus 15: 16. “qnh” also means ‘acquiring wisdom’ (Proverbs 1: 5). When the vowel signs are added, the Aramaic word “qnh” change to “yuqin” meaning ‘to be redeemed’.
The Quran is saying: ‘this book (i.e. the Quran) is tipping of the balance (i.e. a book of another choice), it is not in conflict with the books that were sent down before the Quran (i.e. the Old and New Testaments), nor is it contrary to those who believe in the Hereafter (Christians). All of those are redeemed (i.e. saved).
The Aramaic language of the verse has a totally different meaning from that given by Muslim commentators. This Quranic verse leaves no doubt that the message of the Quran is not in conflict with that of the Bible. Not understanding Aramaic lead to the introduction of erroneous interpretations by Muslim commentators.
This and other subjects are discussed in the newly written book titled “The Qur’an: Misinterpreted, Mistranslated, and Misread. The Aramaic Language of the Qur’an”. Available on Amazon.com and on this website
Copyright 2006, Gabriel Sawma. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED