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READERS of the tafasir of the Qur'an must have noticed often that time after time the commentators, wishing to give concrete examples of the alleged corruption of the Bible, dismiss the subject perfunctorily by the sentence which, after a time, becomes quite like a conventional phrase: 'As the Verse of Stoning and the allusions to the Prophet.'1

Now with regard to the 'allusions to the Prophet', had they really existed in the Taurat, the Jews would not have dared to tamper with them, so great was their respect to God's Book. It will be remembered that the fifty-third chapter of Isaiah with other allusions to the Messiah (كنعت المسيح ) still exists in the Jewish Bible, although they are clear references to Christ and the way He was to sacrifice His life as an atonement. Is not this conclusive proof that the Jews have too great a respect for the Book of God to attempt to corrupt it, even when a text in it tells controversially against them?

1 كنعت النبي وآية الرجم

That the Verse of Stoning is in the Bible and never was omitted from it we shall show in another chapter. But in this chapter we are going to make the amazing discovery that it has been dropped, not from the Bible, but from the Qur'an!

It will be remembered that the penalty incurred by adulterers was first perpetual imprisonment, as in the verse:—

'Shut them (the adulteresses) up within their houses till death release them, or God makes some way for them' [Suratu'n-Nisa' (iv) 19].

For this penalty there was then substituted another, i.e. a hundred lashes;1 and this again was in turn replaced by stoning. But that Verse of Stoning has gone from the Qur'an.

If it be argued that the Verse of Stoning was not recorded, when the Qur'an was edited, only because it could not be testified to by two (or more) witnesses, we will say that the verse was known to several of the Companions (Ashab) who could and did testify to its genuineness. We give below some traditions to this effect:—

(1) Abu 'Ubaid quotes a tradition coming down from ibn Jaish, saying: 'Ubai said, "How many verses is the Suratu-'l-Ahzab (xxxiii)?" I said, "Seventy-two or seventy-three." He said, "It was as long as the Suratu'l-Baqara (ii) and we used to read in it the Verse of Stoning." I said,

1 Suratu'n-Nur (xxiv) 1.

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