Comparison of Jesus and Mohammed
The lives of Jesus and Mohammed have shaped history for thousands of years. Christianity and Islam are currently the largest practiced religions worldwide and have a combined following of approximately 4 billion people ("The Global Religious Landscape", 2014). To put it in perspective, over half the world’s population follows one of these two religions. The next largest religious group is Hinduism with a membership of around 1 billion. When examining Jesus and Mohammed there are many similarities and differences. All of these traits are reflected in their religions. This paper will examine the lives of both men and explain how they impacted the people and world around them.
Births of Jesus and Mohammed
Jesus was born to Joseph and Mary. According to the gospels Jesus was conceived by a miracle of the Holy Spirit while Mary was still a virgin. Upon finding out Mary was pregnant Joseph had planned to leave her, but an angel of the Lord came to him stating, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife; for the child who has been conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit. She will bear a son; and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins” ("Matthew 1:18-25",). During Mary’s pregnancy Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. For this reason Mary and Joseph traveled to Bethlehem where Joseph was originally from. Upon arriving in Bethlehem it came time for the birth but they could not find anywhere to stay. Luckily, an innkeeper said they could stay in his manger. It is here where she gives birth to Jesus. After his birth the Lord came to several shepherds and stated “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger” (The Bible, 2011). According to Luke, the shepherds paid their respects to the new baby by bringing gifts of gold and frankincense and myrrh, which confirmed his divine kingship. There isn’t much recorded history of Jesus until he was 30. At that time, Jesus went to John the Baptist and asked to be baptized. At first, John did not want to perform the baptism because Jesus was believed to be sinless, but he performed it anyway. Mohammed was born in the year of the elephant, otherwise known to be 570AD; to his father Abdallāh, and his mother, Āminah. As Abdallāh had died before Mohammed’s birth, his mother put all her faith into her newborn son (1910 Catholic Encyclopedia, 2012). In order to grow up educated, she sent him off as a baby to live with a woman named Ḥalīmah who took care of him for several years in the dessert. It is during this time that Mohammed states that two angels disguised as men approached him, opened his breast, and cleansed his heart with snow. After hearing this story and seeing a mole on his back (thought to be a sign of a prophet); Ḥalīmah and her husband returned Mohammed to Mecca to live with his grandfather. He grew up to be a respected man of the community, but it wasn’t until he was in his 40’s that he was visited by the angel Gabriel. After this incident Mohammed thought he was possessed by a demon, but his wife’s cousin confirmed to him that he had been chosen as the messenger of God. It took 3 years for Mohammed to start preaching his message to the public. When he was 40 he was taken by the archangel Gabriel on the winged steed Burāq to Jerusalem. They ascended through all the higher states of being to the Divine Presence itself. At one point Gabriel could go no further because were he to do so his wings would be burned. That is the point in which Mohammed had reached a state higher than that of the archangels ("Al-Mi'Raj: The Alleged Ascent To Heaven.", ). Mohammed is said to have received the supreme treasury of...
References: 1910 Catholic Encyclopedia. (2012). Mohammed and Mohammedanism. Retrieved from http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/10424a.htm
The Bible, (2011). The Birth of Jesus. Retrieved from https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Luke%202
Matthew 1:18-25. (). Retrieved from https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew+1%3A18-25&version=NASB
Bucher, Dr. R. (). What was the Ascension of Jesus Christ? Retrieved from http://www.orlutheran.com/html/ascend.html
Winston, K. (2014). Sunni vs. Shiite: What you need to know in 5 points so you can make it through a cocktail party. Retrieved from http://www.religionnews.com/2014/06/13/sunni-vs-shiite-primer/
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Sura 9:30, (). JESUS THE “SON” OF GOD. Retrieved from http://www.answering-islam.org/Silas/son2.htm
AL-MI 'RAJ: THE ALLEGED ASCENT TO HEAVEN.. (). Retrieved from http://answering-islam.org/Gilchrist/Vol1/3d.html
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