Islam and Christianity are two of the world’s biggest religions and while the big similarities among others between them is that they’re both monotheistic religions meaning that they believe in one God, there are several differences between them.
I am not really concluding which religion is going to be better, but rather sharing both religions with you so that everyone can have a clearer understanding
Islam or Christianity which one are you?
Okay, so let’s begin, Islam is currently the second largest religion in the world after Christianity. But if demographic trends continue Islamic followers are expected to overtake the number of Christian followers by the end of the 21st Century.
Just to clarify when referring to Christians, I’m combining both Protestant Christians and Catholic Christians under the same umbrella.
Members of Christianity and Islam would have us believe that they are poles apart. But their histories begin in exactly the same place in the Garden of Eden with Adam and Eve and also Islam and Christianity along with the Judaism are known as Abrahamic faiths. Meaning that they believe that the biblical Prophet Abraham was one of the original fathers of the faith, in the Quran the Prophet Abraham was known as a beloved servant of God and because of Abraham’s devotion to God. God made many of Abraham’s descendants prophets to their own people
Now the story of the Prophet Abraham being commanded to sacrifice his son is known in both Christianity and Islam, in Islam that son is Ishmael and it was through his lineage that Islam was established through the Prophet Muhammad. In Christianity the son that was supposed to be sacrificed was Isaac and through the line of Isaac came many prophets like Jacob, Joseph, Moses, David, Solomon and of course Jesus Christ
Okay, so let’s take a look at the scripture. So, the holy book in Christianity is the Bible and it’s said to be the inspired Word of God, this means different things to different people but basically it means that Christians believe that the books of the Bible were written by many people over a 1,500-year period and those people were guided by the Spirit of God through divine Inspiration. These writings came in the form of poetry songs stories and genealogies where we see personal expression of mortals working hand-in-hand with God
Now the Koran on the other hand is said to be the Word of God dictated directly to Muhammad and written down word-for-word without the personal expression of one or many humans, but the truest reading of the Quran has to be in its original Arabic form because translating it into other languages can also take away from the interpretation of the Quran.
So, how has the interpretation of the holy books effected their evolution.
Christianity has been able to evolve throughout its history, it has been able to adopt with scientific, technological, economic and moral developments, you can see this because there are over 30,000 denominations or branches associated with Christianity, there are divisions however between the different groups on issues such as the nature of Jesus and the relevancy of the Pope. Islam however is very different in that department with the number of Islamic sects estimated to be less than 100.
But due to the nature of the Quran, Islam requires that the society adopts to it rather than in Christianity particularly in the New Testament it’s more adaptive to a society and except for the political separation along the sunni-shia divide is LOM has not particularly shifted and has far less divisions within the religion.
Now regarding Jesus, Islam accepts that Jesus of Nazareth did exist and that he was born of the Virgin Mary? But Islam also believes that Jesus was simply another prophet equal to previous prophets like Abraham and Moses. Muslims believe that Muhammad is the final messenger and is superior to all previous prophets that came before him Christians believe that Jesus Christ is the son of God which makes him equal to God and before he came to earth as a man. He is accepted as the second person of the Trinity and also called the Word of God who became flesh and lived on this earth.
His followers didn’t believe in the idea that Jesus Christ was crucified on the cross, they believe that God spared him from it and took it upon himself, for Christians the sacrifice that God made by sacrificing his son for the sins of humanity is the focal point of the entire faith and without that act the world would remain hopeless in sin.
The Trinity or the Godhead is a core belief in Christianity that says that there is one God who has three manifestations God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit, kind of like a corporation who may have three founders, but they have different roles under the umbrella of the same corporation. I think that analogy makes some sense to kind of understand what’s going on there. Muslims however believe that they practice pure monotheism, that is not affected by concepts like the Trinity where God is three but somehow one and the core belief of Islam is that there is no God worthy of worship? But God as a simple concept in which worship is directed to Allah alone.
In terms of what leads to salvation, Islam teaches a salvation based on work to achieve it, a Muslim must keep the five pillars of Islam, which is confessed the Shahada, there is no god but Allah and Muhammad is His Prophet. Muslims have to kneel in prayer towards Mecca five times a day they have to fast during the daylight hours one month of the year which is Ramadan, they also need to give money to the poor and make a pilgrimage to Mecca sometime in their lifetime. Islam teaches that on the day of judgment people will have their good and evil deeds weighed in the balance. So, the standard for judgment is the actions that they take whether they’re good or bad.
While Christianity teaches that a person is saved by the grace which is a gift from God? through faith in the death and resurrection of Jesus and on the note of Salvation and judgment. That’s exactly where we will end this analysis.
In conclusion, some similarities between the two religions again, both Islam and Christianity are Abrahamic monotheistic religions both Islam and Christianity, have practices or duties that are central to the life of their religious community. Catholics are expected to take part in as many as seven sacraments as possible while Muslims are expected to practice all five of the pillars of Islam both Islam and Christianity are based primarily on the lives and teachings of men sent by God.