Compare and Contrast: Christianity and Islam Essay

Words: 2341
Pages: 10

cathy Smith
Intro to World religions
Compare and Contrast: Christianity and Islam Introduction 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.
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Thus both religions talk of reward and punishment for non-submission to God. Islamic understanding often says that those sent to hell are often the blessed ones because God in so doing God purifies them; in other words God does not ignore them but gives them special attention. But this is an interpretation by some – no Koranic verse asserts this in unequivocal terms. At the other end is an extreme theory that there is no escape from hell – it being a traditional theory. Those in hell will become the fuel that ignites the fire. Christian theologians too are anti-universalists saying that some will be sent to eternal hell. Among Christians the annihilationist contends that the wicked will be completely destroyed (Armstrong 54). But the traditional view is that God is all love and cannot resort to such action. Broadly speaking the concept of hell, with modifications, is present among all the groups of Islamists and Christians. The running thread of thought in both is that God epitomizes both love and justice. Resurrection manifests this justice side of God. The trouble starts with interpretations of goodness and badness. The essence of Christian thought is that there is an afterlife and its quality depends upon the life we lead here. Some contend that there is a purgatory stage between heaven and hell; Protestants do not contribute to this view. Catholics say that confessing to priests erases sins. Islam contends that death is the final end of