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Western Religions

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  • Pages: 5
  • Word count: 1188
  • Category: Religion

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Western religions, there are three main forms, there is Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. it is best to break them out individually and compare the three. Once this is done, each religion is easier to understand you can find newrespect for each though understanding is achieved. The main focal point of any religious aspect is the understanding of God. A breakdown of each so that they are easier to understand is as follows: Judaism: God is omnipotent, or meaning “all powerful” or of unlimited power. God is omniscient, or meaning to have the capacity to know everything infinitely, “all knowing.” In Judaism, God is the creator of everything. Christianity: God is everything, the creator of everything, and ruler of everything. The religion is based on the “trinity,” or the belief of the father, the son, and the Holy Ghost. Islam: The Islamic religion calls their God, deity, or higher power “Allah,” and to this religion, Allah is the highest power, and there is nothing that is before Allah. There are differences we can see with the above three that are listed. I believe a higher power is a higher power.

All on your own you decide what yours is.. As you can see, each religion sees their higher power as their ruler, creator of all mankind, and there is no sort of a higher power than their God. The role of the prophets in each religion varies. To break them down for comparison, it is easiest to do them separately: “Judaism: in Judaism, there were thousands of prophets throughout time, not all of the prophets were only men, nor where they all Jewish. A prophet in Judaism was anyone who was spiritually enlightened, and used this enlightenment to spread the word of God and their understanding of God to the masses. Of all the prophets in Judaism, Moses from biblical times is considered the most enlightened of all of the Jews. Christianity: The role of the prophets in Christianity were any men who were closely “in touch” with the divine. Though this relationship, prophets would receive messages from God himself, and use these messages to spread his message to the appropriate people that needed to hear it. Some of the most famous and revered prophets of Christianity would be the four openers of the New Testament: Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. Traditionally, only one portion of a belief system is similar with all the religions.

The belief and role of Angels and Demons is different is all of them as Judaism does not belive in hell or angels and demons. To all three of these religions they all hold their own beliefs, the same holds true: angels are beings created by God to act as a messenger or to carry out task in his name. They are not of a human form and only take human form in order to communicate with a select few. Demons on the other hand, are former angels who rebelled against God and seek to do nothing more than to cause harm, anguish, and temp mankind to stray from God. As with any faith, two important factors are how they perceive God, while another is how they achieve salvation on this earth though God. To compare theses three religion is a daunting task, for while some things are alike, the concept of salvation is very different between them.

The only common link between the three is the meaning of salvation, the objective being to return to a state of innocence and bliss. Judaism: The Jews do not believe in a common known “personal salvation” on this earth. Judaism follows a different path whereas salvation is achieved by making the earth into a place as God created and intended it to be. Christianity: Christians believe that salvation can only be achieved by accepting Jesus Christ as ones personal savior and believing that he came to this earth and died for your sins. By accepting this, they live their lives in a way that they believe Jesus would follow. Islam: Salvation is achieved though enlightenment, or removing oneself from the temptations and sins of worldly desire. To achieve enlightenment is a whole other religious aspect. Worship and sacred practices are another common aspect of any religion, and these three religions have their own methods of worship.

While each belief has “Cells” or smaller branches of their religion that are entirely devoted to a life of worship, commonly each religion observes the following common practices” Judaism: Commonly, Jews recite from a prayer book three times daily, and preferable in a synagogue with at least 10 other men, although solo is acceptable. While commonly in Christianity the day of worship is on Sundays, Jewish services begin on Friday evenings, with multiple services conducted on Saturdays. Sacred text for worship include the Torah (written and oral) and Tanakh. Christianity: Worship is on the day of Sabbath (the day God rested) or the seventh day of the week, Sundays. Christians commonly attend churches and worship is done though song and group teaching and reading from the Bible.

While no common daily prayer ritual is mandatory, prayer to God is done on a daily basis for purposes of maintaining a relationship with God. Sacred text for Christians is the Bible (although many version exist, most commonly accepted is the King James Version). Islam: The most devoted of the three, prayer happens five times a day to praise Allah, no matter where you are. Other methods of worship include fasting and at least one pilgrimage to Mecca in one’s lifetime, the Holy city. Sacred text for knowledge and worship is limited to the Quran, or the words of Muhammad. The role of women is different from religion to religion, However we do know Islam is very specific. Judaism if you are strict it will be different for you also. There are misconceptions this is mainly due to the traditional roles of women vary from their own beliefs. To best explain their roles, we can merely compare them: Judaism: In Judaism, women are seen as separate from men; however they are seen as equal. This separation is not due mainly to gender, but the roles and responsibilities differ from men and women.

Christianity: While modern times have changed the role of women from being in today terms “housewives,” women of modern Christianity compare to the of Judaism. Unlike Judaism, modern Christianity has looked past the barriers of gender, and female evangelists are becoming more and more common. Islam: Most misunderstood of all the religious beliefs, Islamic women vary by different countries and traditions. In some countries such as Saudi Arabia, women are not permitted to worship with men. However in other countries, women have more than equal rights, as some Islamic women have held offices as high as prime minister. Nowhere in the Quran does it clearly state the role of women in Islamic society, what commonly happens is only a traditional matter that varies greatly by location. I hope this paper will give you a better insight and understanding of these three western religions.

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