Intro to World religions
Compare and Contrast: Christianity and Islam
Although Christianity and Islam have been and are dominating the scene it is necessary to place both in their proper perspective taking into account human history of faith in the supernatural or something beyond our five senses. Side by side with this awe mixed fear of the unknown is the feeling of being cocksure and confident of one’ own power. It is the same of the caveman as of the politicians and financiers strutting around Wall Street and Washington. When this feeling of being sure is coupled with a belief, then ‘ism’ is born. This ism can be anything from belief in money-power to mass-power or god-power. Then is another side to our psychology. We try to foist our beliefs on others. It is in our very psyche. For the purpose of understanding two interviews were carried out. The first person interviewed is Albert Lamb and the second person is Azad Rauf. Albert Lamb, an ardent Christain interviewed over telephone noted, Historian Arnold Toynbee has commented that it is not so much the imposition of territorial rule that has created trouble but the imposition of cultural values that has led to friction. Napoleon understood the game very well and his strategy was to send the priests before the soldiers so that the mind-set was created for the overall rule and exploitation. Today also the various missionaries make use of high sounding spiritual talk and poverty of the masses to create the perfect environment and build the foundation for economic-political conquest. History is repeating itself with the wolf changing the color and texture of its sheep’s clothing. Ideas of the afterlife in Christianity and Islam
Although Christianity and Islam are in loggerheads even today the two religions have sprouted from the same roots and in this respect shares it with Judaism. The three come under the umbrella of Semitic religion. The Old Testament is common to all three but the trouble starts with the interpretation and the figure of the savior. While Islam accepts Jesus as one of the many saviors he is not the final one – it being Muhammad. Christianity refers to the Holy Trinity but Islam contends there cannot be three but there is only one God. True to human nature there are sects and sub-sects with one clawing the other within Christians and Moslems. Thus any broad statement on their respective views on after life and morality will stir up a hornet’s nest with plenty of mud-slinging (Armstrong 49). Ideas about afterlife have always haunted man and as such Islam and Christianity are no exceptions. The point of controversy is about resurrection. Will it be resurrection of the body? Both the Bible and the Koran affirm it. The Quran states, “Does man suppose that We shall not put together his bones? Yes indeed, We are able to proportion (even) his fingertips” (75:3-4). In the Bible it is said “that there shall certainly be a resurrection of both righteous and the wicked” (Acts 24:14-15). As per the original Christian doctrine the true followers of Jesus would dwell eternally in the ‘Kingdom of God’. The idea of bodily resurrection caused confusion among multiple groups but more or less theologians have accepted the doctrine that the bodies will see resurrection. The Muslims believe in the single resurrection of all the souls. The Koran says “And the day the Hour sets in, they will be divided on that day: As for those who have faith and do righteous deeds, they shall be in a garden, rejoicing. But as for those who were faithless and denied Our signs and the encounter of the Hereafter, they will be brought to punishment” (30:14-16). Some Christians like the Pre-millennialists believe in two resurrections. The opinion is not based however on the Bible. Thus in general Christians do not believe in multiple resurrections but there will one day on which resurrection for all will take...
Cited: Armstrong, Karen. A History of God. New York: Ballentine Books, 1993. Print.
The holy Bible. Oxford: The University Press, 1885. Print.
The Koran Interpreted: A Translation. Trans. A. J. Arberry. London: Touchstone, 1996. Print.
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