Religion – Essay Example

Discuss how Judaism and Christianity are similar and different. One can find more of similarities than differences between Judaism and Christianity as both the religions have a common origin. The fact that Christianity had its origin in the ancient Judaism adds to this similarity. Both Christianity and Judaism believe in a monotheistic God who is almighty, omnipresent and omniscient even though the former holds that there are three persons-the Son, the Father and the Holy Spirit- known as the three Godheads in God. Both the religions depict God as loving, forgiving and merciful. Both the religions share the Old Testament or rather the Hebrew Scriptures as the authoritative Word of God; however, unlike the followers of Judaism, Christians consider the New Testament also as the sacred Word of God (What is the difference between Christianity and Judaism?). Similarly, both Judaism and Christianity give importance to the Ten Commandments that God has given to Moses, and both the religions share unanimous concepts with regard to life after death, the existence of heaven and hell. The Ten Commandments stand at the core of the Jewish Holy Book, the Torah. The Jewish people believe that they are the chosen people of God; the “stories in the Torah teach about Gods relationship with the Jewish People” and they “learn from the Torah how to act, think and even feel about life and death” (Katz).
However, one can also notice considerable differences in the religious beliefs, practices and rites between the two religions. Both the religions differ in their understanding of Jesus Christ as the messiah or the Son of God. While Christianity views Jesus Christ as the Son of God and Saviour, Judaism considers Jesus as a mere prophet or teacher. Similarly “Christianity teaches that Jesus Christ is the fulfilment of the Old Testament prophecies of a coming Messiah / Savior” whereas Judaism consider Jesus as “a good teacher, and perhaps even a prophet of God” (What is the difference between Christianity and Judaism?). As the Judaists does not believe in Jesus as the messiah they do not offer their prayers to Jesus, worship him, or observe the Holy Eucharist, which stands at the centre of Christian faith. On the other hand, the Christians believe that salvation is possible only through Jesus Christ.
Works Cited
“What is the difference between Christianity and Judaism?” Got Questions Ministries, 2010. Web. 28 Mar. 10 < http://www.gotquestions.org/difference-Christianity-Judaism.html>.
Katz, Lisa. “Basic Beliefs of Judaism”. The New York Times Company, 2010. Web. 28 Mar. 10 < http://judaism.about.com/od/abcsofjudaism/a/beliefsbasic.htm>.