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What do "moderates" say about Qu'ran 2.221?

Reader comment on item: Identifying Moderate Muslims

Submitted by HS (India), Aug 28, 2008 at 12:24

A commonly seen comment is that Islam is not the problem but it's violent "interpretation" is. Much is made about "context" and ijtihad in interpreting various verses. How can there be any ambiguity in verses such as 2.221 (Qu'ran, Pickthall translation):

"Wed not idolatresses till they believe; for lo! a believing bondswoman is better than an idolatress though she please you; and give not your daughters in mariage to idolaters till they believe, for lo! a believing slave is better than an idolater though he please you. These invite into the Fire ..."

I have never seen this verse quoted by the apologists of Islam. What is quoted is the flattering 2.256 (Qu'ran): "There is no compulsion in religion".

Given that the Qu'ran is regarded literally as the word of Allah, both by moderates and hardliners alike, "moderates" cannot cherry-pick verses they wish to present as the face of Islam but instead must make clear their stand on verses such as 2.221.

If they reject these verses, let them publish an expurgated Qu'ran to demonstrate their bona fides.

Submitting....

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