Islam's perspective on Baptism

Discussion in 'TurnToIslam Lounge !' started by Ladybug3478, Apr 7, 2009.

  1. Ladybug3478
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    Ladybug3478 Junior Member

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    Hello,

    One of the things that I cannot understand is why Islam doesn't practice baptism by submerging the whole body in water. I know this is a righteous practice because Jesus did it and well, John the baptist did it.

    Can someone please explain why Islam doesn't? What is the difference between Wudu and Baptism? I don't understand.

    Thanks
  2. a_muslimah86
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    a_muslimah86 Hubbi Li Rabbi Staff Member

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    Hello..

    Baptism according to what I know signifies *salvation* (for the most part)..in Islam we do not have the principle or concept of salvation..as we believe we are born innocent and commit sins in our lives later on due to weakness..lust..greed..etc. so a ritual such "baptism" would not really fit into Islam..as there isn't a *concept* for it to fall under...

    Wudu'u is just *simple cleansing* for *worship*..for example we make wudu'u to pray (an obligatory and/or voluntary prayer) and make we make it when we want Qura'an...if it's performed for reasons other than what I specifically mentioned..then it is either to remain *prepared for worship* at any time..to do it before sleep (upon the recommendation of The Prophet (pbuh) so angels pray for the person sleeping until he/she wakes up..or to do it when angry (also upon The Prophet's recommendation) to calm down or even end the anger

    So we perform wudu'u continously as an obligatory form of cleansing when worshiping Allah..whereas Baptism is performed ONCE in a lifetime (unless circumstances require another..such as converting from one Christian denomination to another) to signify salvation based on the trinity or Jesus only..and in some cases it signifies *admission into a church* as well..which we have neither...we neither believe in salvation or in "admitting people into a church"..when you become Muslim..you can just make the shahada and be good..and it's *recommended* that you take a shower in case you want to pray and such..that's it

    Hope this clarified the issue for ya :)

    Peace




  3. Rashadi
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    Rashadi Junior Member

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    Greetings LadyBug, thanks for this question and here is my answer. Islam is what God ordained and we do not make the religion, rules, etc. Baptism as practiced by Christians today is totally different from that practiced by ancient Jews. It had a totally different purpose and it did not mean one was "saved" at all. There is no need for that in Islam because it is Allah wa Ta'ala who "saves" people and guides us. We do not have a concept of "original sin" as my sister correctly stated so there is nothing to free one's self from. Getting batized as today's Christians do has no basis because people still sin afterwards even if the previous sins are forgiven. In Islam we are taught that all are born innocent, free of sin, pure and with the right nature but it is our surroundings, parents, etc that influence us.

    When a person embraces Islam and makes shahadah, all your previous sins are forgiven. A person is like a new born who has no sins. Now the person will start living his life as his Creator wants him. We learn, we improve and ask for forgiveness. A person doesn't ever become saved forever but this is something that only God eventually knows. However, Allah is most mercieful, the One who loves those who turn to Him and repent with sincerity. He doesn't expect us to be 100% perfect or else He would have made us as the angles who are sinless. He gave us the choice and the ability to made decisions. He desires and requires, sincerity, effort and devotion. No one will have done enough to earn paradise no matter what but it is all with the mercy of Allah. We try our best and we do it with sincerity. He has given us a way, He is the one who guides and He does not leave us in blindness nor is He unjust to us.

    Any person who is sincere and looking for the truth, can expect God to guide him or her. He is the only one who guides and He alone can forgive, punish and save people. There is no need for baptism in Islam and even in Christianity of today it has a different meaning than it did for the Israelites in the time of John(as). I hope I was of any help to you and forgive me if I sounded offensive in anyway.
  4. Ladybug3478
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    Ladybug3478 Junior Member

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    Hello,

    Yeah, from what I recall the bible says baptism is mandatory in order to enter heaven. I'm not interested in the today's Christian practice of baptism but, the Jewish (Jesus(pbuh) and John the Baptist's (pbuh) practice. I tried looking this up before via Google but, still was left unsure. So, I'll keep looking. I'll have to look at the new testament (king james version and NIV), the Torah but, mine doesn't have an index and I have no idea what the Jews may have called baptism unless, they called it baptism. lol. I understand it as being a way of cleaning the body inside and out not, necessarily salvation as thought of today but, again, I don't know. Please pray for me that the truth is revealed, if I may ask that of you. Thanks.

    And, thank you all for the explanation from an Islamic view! :)

    Rashadi, you didn't sound offensive in anyway.

    Thanks
  5. Hard Rock Moslem
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    Hard Rock Moslem I'm your brother

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    Hi Lady, I've following question to you regarding the one I highlighted in blue. When a baby born, few hours later died before being baptised, will the baby go to heaven or ... pls explain. Pls note you mentioned baptism is mandatory.

    Secondly, how the church going to baptise a baby born deaf and mute?

    For muslim, we are guided by following hadith therefore we do not need or believe in baptism:

    Hadith - Bukhari 2.440, Narrated Ibn Shihab

    Abu Huraira, narrated that the Prophet said, "Every child is born with a true faith (i.e. to worship none but Allah Alone) but his parents convert him to Judaism or to Christianity or to Magainism, as an animal delivers a perfect baby animal. Do you find it mutilated?"

    Sorry if I asked anything wrong.
  6. mezeren
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    Hi,

    Allah perfected the religion for all human kind which is islam.islam did not have to take every rules of earlier revelations.i do not know whether authentic bible ordered the baptism or not(no one could know since we don't have the original bible),but it does not matter.We have islam which has not been changed and will not be.if islam orders something we obey it,if it does not order baptism we don't do it,simple as that.

    May Allah help you find the truth,Amin.
  7. tash_y
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    tash_y New Member

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    This is a great question, we recently had a few people who came to Islam and this question was asked.
    One of the first things a person will be asked to do after reverting ti Islam is to take a bath.

    secondly as everyone knows better than me that It is obligatory for Muslims to bath at least once a week on Fridays, I understand this compensates or is the same as being baptised.

    Jazallah Kairen
  8. daywalker
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    daywalker Junior Member

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    :salam2:

    Most of the scholars says taking bath at friday is sunnah, and some says its wajib.
  9. a_muslimah86
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    a_muslimah86 Hubbi Li Rabbi Staff Member

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    Bathing on Friday is a Sunnah (which essentially means it's something optional)..and it is not the same as baptizing..because first of all if you commit do it..you do it every Friday..and baptization takes place once in a lifetime..secondly..we bathe as part of the etiquette of Juma'a (Friday) and it is to face Allah (swt) with the most beautiful of sights..*men* are even supposed to perfume themselves when going to Juma'a...so it's an etiquette and a manner of showing respect and love of Allah as you prepare to worship Him (swt)..so it's something *very different* from baptization :)

    :wasalam:
  10. a_muslimah86
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    a_muslimah86 Hubbi Li Rabbi Staff Member

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    :salam2:

    Now that I found out baptizing (or some form of it) exists in Judaism..I wonder if sister Shyhijabi will pass by here and speak about it..I never knew this before and I'm interested in finding out more concerning it because I am assuming it would be different in nature and such..but we'll see..I don't want to research as I cannot differentiate what's accurate and what's not and I do not want to risk learning something wrong..it's embarrassing :)

    :wasalam:
  11. TheHumbleWun
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    Salaam,

    I believe there is baptism in hinduism as well.
  12. Ladybug3478
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    Ladybug3478 Junior Member

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    Hello All,

    Thanks for taking the time to reply on this post. That is okay - I'll research this on my own. Just so happens that National Geographic had a special on it this evening (not that I take every word they say as true) so, I was able to get some information that'll prove useful in my search.

    Oh, no babies and young children are suppose to be clean to a certain age from what I understand. And, yes, Jesus was at an age where he was able to understand it. But, I'm not looking for the popular used definition on baptism. Besides, I think it's suppose to be done in a natural water source - like a river or something. It is meant as a purification. It has been used in other civilizations as a way of purifying the body and soul (with your clothes on). And, besides, since Muslims respect and believe in Jesus - I'm sure Muslims have respect for this ancient tradition.

    Of course, if I say anything wrong - may God make it be known to all of us so that we are all guided down the right path and God willing that path is as straight as possible (as God Wills).

    Thanks again for your help guys! :)
  13. slaveofAllah88
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    slaveofAllah88 Slave of Allah (swt)

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    Hello sister,
    Im probably the least knowledgable person here, if i may Add something from my observation.
    The christians scripture say Jesus (PBUH) was baptised when he was 30, that was when he was chosen to be the Messiah aka the christ by Allah (swt).

    What christians call Baptism could also just be taking a bath or washing body, Before when someone enters Islam too that person is to take a gusl or a bath to symbolise the cleansing of their previous sin.

    So Jesus (PBUH) got baptised when was he choses to be the christ by Allah (swt), the thing that christians call baptism could just be Jesus christ (PBUH) taking a ghusl ( bath) before he begin his journey as a Messiah to cleanse himself from anything that might have happened in the past and start on the new Path to obey the Will of Allah (swt).

    This is the sorta understanding i came up with, its more of a educated guess, so you would have to do research on it, and if any of the brother and sisters could shed more light on it -- it cud be helpful because im a human being i could be wrong.
  14. ShyHijabi
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    Salaam,

    There is no "baptism" per se in Judaism. Rather the Jews sometimes take a special bath called a "mikvah" which is very close to what we do in ghusl in Islam. The Mikvah is usually after childbirth (40 days post partum I believe), after menstruation and also other forms of impurity in the religion. But the Mikvah has nothing to do with removing sin or salvation, that is a Chrsitian idea.

    Baptism as mentioned in the New Testament in Christianity is not a recognized practice among Jews, not even the ancient Jews. Whether or not baptism (as recorded in the New Testament) is a edited part of the bible is not known. Christians will often tell you that their bible is unaltered but often after researching the editing that the Nicean council did they often are shaken. Books were removed and some books were edited heavily. They also voted on which should remain and which should go. The letters from Paul was added later on and really distorted the religion. They also switched the order the books came in to fit a time line. I find this humorous since Revelations warns against adding to "this book" ie., Bible, yet many of the books were written after Revelations.

    Just because it was written in the New Testament does not mean it actually happened. Since baptism is not mentioned in Qu'ran or Hadith I consider it a bidah.

    Wasalaam
  15. Ladybug3478
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    Ladybug3478 Junior Member

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    Hello ShyHijab,

    Please remove New Testament and Christian of today out of the mix. I'm not asking about that...if at all you are answering my question. But, if you are not - then please accept my apology. Yes, Jews and their ritual baths before entering the temple, after menstration and other 'things' that cause one to be impure. About this Mikvah....do you know the purpose of completely submerging ones body in water? And, I heard something about drinking the water and praying to God. Do you know why it had to be of a natural water source? Remember, I'm not talking about salvation but instead purification. So, if there is any information that may help me out in this case (regarding Jesus and Mikvahs and John the Baptist) I'd appreciated it but, if not that is okay. I'm just trying to find some answers for myself.

    As for Hindus doing this and pagans...I mean, right now that just reminds me of how the Jews inherited a number of their traditions from the Egyptians.

    Basically, this reminds me that I know nothing and have a lot to learn.

    I'm just trying to sort this out as I attempt to figure out what relgion if any I should be apart of - that's all.

    ShyHijab, were you Jewish?

    Thanks
  16. ShyHijabi
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    ShyHijabi Junior Member

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    Ladybug,

    I am a little confused as to what exactly you are asking. You mention baptism as recognized in the New Testament and ask if it has any relevance in Islam. Baptism for the sake of salvation or washing sin away is not recognized in Islam nor Judaism.

    The reason the Mikvah must be from a natural spring is that what was commanded in Rabbincal literature such as the Talmud. Total immersion was also described by the rabbis and that is why the whole body must be submerged. Many practices of Jews have been lost in the annals of time and basically it's tradition. I never was told to drink the water in the Mikvah so I have no idea about that.

    What is described in the News Testament is not a Mikvah (purification) since Mikvahs had nothing to do with "Washing away the sins of the past." A Mikvah is about washing away impurities such as secretions from the body, this is deemed "ritually unclean." So basically what I am saying is the immersion described in the New Testament(or sprinkling or however it's described) is not a Mikvah. Mikvah is very, very close to what is a ghusl in Islam. Baptism has no comparison in either Judaism or Islam.
  17. Ladybug3478
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    Hello ShyHijab,

    I'm sorry for the confusion. I didn't know of any other word to describe what I knew of as 'baptism'. So, what is a ghusl?

    Thanks
  18. Ladybug3478
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    Ladybug3478 Junior Member

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    Hello ShyHijab,

    Another question...is there anything in the Jewish literature which state 'submergence' and 'natural water source' are Rabbinical tradition only?

    Thanks
  19. ShyHijabi
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    ShyHijabi Junior Member

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    LadyBug,

    Not sure, you would have to look that up. I just know it was in the Talmud which is not scripture but basically all your Traditions in Judaism passed down by rabbis. Anyways...getting sleepy over here, nighty night. :)
  20. Ladybug3478
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    Hello,

    I think this question was last behind my last question. What is ghusl?

    Thanks

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