Christianity vs Islam
Islam and Christianity are the largest religions globally that have same traditional and historical connection and also with other theological differences. The two religions originated from the Middle East as are considered to be monotheistic (Thomas et al., 2009). Christianity established from the Second Temple Judaism during the 1st century C.E. (Thomas et al., 2009). It is based on the teachings of life, death and resurrection of the son of God, Jesus Christ and the followers of this religion are referred to as Christians. The Islam religion was established in 7th century CE and the word Islam refers to submission or surrender to Allah (Thomas et al., 2009). Islam focuses on Muhammad’s teachings as a way of showing their submission to Allah. However, the Muslims believe that Christians are the bearers of the monotheistic scriptures. As well, Christians considers the Muslims as their fellow Abrahamic religion whom they worship the same God and also believe Muslims are an isolated cult. Furthermore, Christianity and Islam use different scriptures with the Islam having the Quran while the Christians have the Bible and also have different places of worship. The common worshiping place for Christians is in the church while the Muslims common worshiping place is the Mosque.
Similarities between Christianity and Islam
Christianity and Islam have a long history together and they tend to have some remarkable connections. Similarities believed to exist between the two religions are generally found in the practices and religious beliefs of Christians and Muslims because of their common socio-cultural space and also the historical and political circumstances (Thomas et al., 2009). Both Christians and Muslims affirms that there is only one God who created everything that exists. The two religions also believe that God gave the world a special revelation. However, some of the similarities between the two religions are;
Abrahams Prophecy as the Father of Humankind
The prophecy of Abraham is the head of the Christians and Muslims. For instance, in the Old Testament, the book Genesis 12: 2-3 says that, God spoken to Abraham and told him that He will make him a great nation and bless him. Moreover, in Gen 17: 20-22, the Bible says that, God blessed Ishmael, who was the Abrahamic head of the Muslims as well as Isaac the Abrahamic leader of the Christianity. Therefore, today, Christians and Muslims make up over 50% of the world’s population thereby fulfilling God’s promise to Abraham (Renard, 2011).
Christians and Muslim Believe in the Return of Jesus
Both Christians and Muslims believe that during the end times Jesus Christ will return to the world. Both religions believe that the return of Jesus will be to address the immorality, injustices, and conflict. The Christianity and Islam have a messianic creed that states that the Messiah will bring to an end all the religious conflicts and start an era full of peace (Thomas et al., 2009).
Jesus and His Mother Mary in the Holy Bible and the Holy Quran
Christians believe in Jesus Christ the son of God who died because of their wickedness. However, teachings of Jesus are all over the Holy Bible. Nevertheless, the Islam Jesus is one of the most significant prophets referenced in the Holy Quran. The Holy Quran in verse 21: 91, presents a great nobility about Jesus as well as his mother Mary, ‘‘we made Mary and her son a symbol for all people” also in verse 2: 253 states that ‘’Jesus, son of Mary was given clear testimonies and fortified with the Holy Spirit.” Also, through this verse, the Holy Quran reaffirms the righteousness of Holy Mary and she is the only woman stated in by name in the Quran. Moreover, Muslims affirms that Mary is a woman of dignity and they states her name in their prayer ‘’may Allah be pleased with her.” (Renard, 2011).
Differences between Christianity and Islam
In some instances, Christians and Muslims appeared to agree but later deviate significantly because of changing aspects of the doctrine based on deviating assumptions (Wilken, 2013). For example, in Quran verse 4: 172 states that, ‘’The Messiah would never shrink from being servant of God,” however, Philippians 2: 6-8 Jesus’ denial to avoid servanthood and claiming to the son of God is criticized by the Muslims stating that a servant should not claim to be a son of God. There are several other differences between the Islam and Christianity.
Islam, Christianity, and Love
Muslims affirms that God as merciful, benevolent and sovereign but not loving as the Holy Bible states. In 1 John 4:8-16, the Bible announces ‘’God is LOVE, and it is because of his love for the world that He sent His only son to save the world.” In contrast, the Holy Quran does not identify God with love nor command the Muslims to love their God. Therefore, they maintain that incorporating love with God compromises His power. They also believe that it distorting and humanizing God what is wrong (Gauss, 2009).
Islam, Christianity and Scriptures
Muslims and Christians portray differences in their scriptures, for instance, the Muslims rely on the fact that, God shown his will to several prophets that include the Hebrew prophets and also to Jesus and therefore the Old and New Testaments are corrupted and should not be respected. They also believe that the Quran is the ultimate as well as final revelation (Wilken, 2013). In contrast, Christians hold on believing that God gradually revealed himself in Old and New Testaments and therefore, every book in the Holy Bible is a product of God through the human writers. Christians also believe that the Holy Bible is a complete God’s revelation and no writing was added and therefore there is no textual or historical evidence that supports that the Holy Bible is corrupt as stated by the Quranic teachings (Wilken, 2013).
Islam, Christianity and Christ’s Death
Many Christians believe that Jesus died on the cross and his death was followed by a glorious resurrection. The Christians gospel holds that through the death and resurrection of Jesus, humans are forgiven their sins (Gauss, 2009). Nevertheless, many of the Muslims claim that Jesus did never died on the cross, for instance, Surah 4:155- 159 states that ‘’regardless of the fact that the Jewish attempted to execute Jesus, they did not succeed, nor crucify him, but the Jewish thought that they killed him.” According to the Islam, God could not have allowed Jesus, His anointed prophet be crucified. This statements, therefore, creates a big difference between the Muslims and Christians believe in the death of Jesus.
Christianity and Islam are two religions that are followed by almost half of the world’s population. These two religions have several things in common like both are monotheistic Abrahamic religions and in both religions, Jesus Christ has been a significant revered figure. However, the Christians believe in Jesus Christ as the Son of God who walked on earth as the personality of God. Furthermore, Muslims views Jesus as God’s messenger and a prophet. The two religions believe in the return of Jesus Christ during the end time.
- Gauss, J. F. (2009). Islam & Christianity: A revealing contrast. Alachua, Fl: Bridge-Logos.
- Renard, J. (2011). Islam and Christianity: Theological Themes in comparative perspective. Berkeley: University of California Press.
- Thomas, D., Roggema, B., Monferrer, S. J. P., & Chesworth, J. (2009). Christian Muslim relations: A bibliographical history. Leiden: Brill.
- Wilken, R. L. (2013). Christianity faces to face with Islam. New York: First Things.