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A Comparison/Contrast Between Christianity and Islam - Essay Example

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A Comparison/Contrast Between Christianity and Islam

For purposes of this brief analysis, it will be impossible to list all of the ways in which these two world religions mirror one another; instead, the purpose of this brief analysis will be to analyze but a few distinct ways in which the two religions are analogous and differentiated.
The first similarity is of course the fact that both religions trace their ultimate roots to Abraham; the father of Ishmael and Isaac. Christianity traces its roots to the Abrahamic tradition that has been espoused by Judaism and that gave rise to many of the prophecies concerning the birth, death and resurrection of the Son of God. Similarly, the Islamic faith traces its earliest manifestations to that of Ishmael and the lineage that he created which was passed down through the centuries and eventually gave rise to Mohammed (the holiest prophet of Islam). In this way, both religions claim the same familial heritage and share the same revered patriarch.
Similarly, both traditions believe in a monotheistic god. Whereas they call him different names, this central belief in monotheism provides a powerful and distinctive similarity between the these monotheistic faiths. However, it should be noted that the Christian interpretation of the nature of God stands in stark contrast to the way that the Islamic tradition interprets this entity. For instance, whereas in Islam Allah is a singular entity, in many forms of Christianity, the triune nature of God has been the defining characteristic that has determined the growth of Christianity from earliest times (Volf 2011). Some of the most notable divergence comes with relation to the role of Jesus Christ within the two religions. In Christianity, Jesus Christ is viewed as the Messiah who lived and died to take away the sings of mankind. In Islam, Jesus Christ is also considered the Messiah, born of a virgin and a fulfillment of Old Testament prophecy. However, the divergence comes in the fact that Islam does not believe that Jesus died on the cross. Instead, Muslims believe that God only made it appear that Jesus died on the cross. Similarly, due to the fact that Islam does not consider Jesus divine, they do not believe that He raised himself from the dead and ascended to heaven on His own. Rather, Islam interprets Jesus Christ’s ministry on earth as that of a prophets; equal to that of Elijah and/or Abraham (Abulafia 2011). In this way, Islamic people believe that it was Allah Himself that took Jesus Christ to heaven at the conclusion of His earthly ministry. Similarly, referencing the previous discussion point in regards to the singular nature of Allah, Muslims do not believe that Jesus was the literal “Son” of God. Rather, their interpretation of Jesus as a prophet allows them the luxury of both appreciating His earthly ministry as well as juxtaposing the fact that He was not the literal Son of God. What is interesting about this view of Jesus is that Muslims believe in the Second Coming as described throughout the New Testament in precisely the same way that Christians do. Additionally, Muslims believe that there will in the end of times be an anti-Christ who will arise and it will be the Second Coming of Jesus Christ which serves to bring the rule of the anti-Christ to a close (Holland 2012). Additionally, both religions also agree on the fact that a Day of Judgment will come and the wicked will be separated from the Just. Also, Muslims accept the Bible as containing certain nuggets of truth and virtue; however, they believe that it has been corrupted by a large number of interested ...Show more
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For purposes of this brief analysis, it will be impossible to list all of the ways in which these two world religions mirror one another; instead, the purpose of this brief analysis will be to analyze but a few distinct ways in which the two religions are analogous and differentiated…
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