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Christianity And Judaism Essay

3193 words - 13 pages

A dictionary definition should suffice to define Religion but because of the complexity of the subject, it tends to be insufficient one has to resource to the faith meaning to better understand it. Let us look into what the dictionary tell us; First, the belief in a god or in a group of gods. Second and organized system of belief, ceremonies, and rules used to worship a god or group of gods. And lastly an interest, a belief, or an activity that is very important to a person or group. In truth there is no one definition that accurately depicts what religion is. If there is not any explanation that completely envelops the actual meaning, then it is understandable that there is no one true universal religion. Religious beliefs may vary from culture to culture, but mostly all are based on the same principle: there is something far greater than us and we must worship it. Being that this is such a widespread principle one would think that religions would have some kind of common ground especially when it comes to two of the oldest and most significant religions in existence today. Judaism and Christianity are two of the more universally practiced religions today. They are both rooted in their faith in the Bible. Their origins are based in the Bible. If their foundations are so similar, why are they so different and why can they not see eye to eye? The similarities between these two groups are almost as important as their differences. Examining the history and the relationship between Judaism and Christianity would reveal the root of their long-standing discord.
Roots of Judaism
According to the Bible, the origins of the Jewish people can be traced all the way back to Abraham, who is considered to be the father of Judaism. It is believed that Abraham circumcised himself, all male servants, and all male descendants by God’s commandment and in return he and his wife, Sarah conceived a son, Isaac. The law of circumcision is thought to have been set up in order to distinguish between Gentiles and Jews. God made a covenant with Abraham; he said that the descendants of Abraham shall inherit a promised land (foundation for the belief that they are the “chosen” people) because of his faith in and fear of God. God promised Abraham that the Jews (his descendants) would inherit the land of Canaan. The teachings of Judaism are based upon the Hebrew Scriptures (Old Testament), which consists of three sections: Torah, Prophets and Writings. The collection as a whole is referred to as the Tanak. The Torah consists of the first five books of the Hebrew bible written by Moses. Traditionally it is believed to be the revelation of God to Moses. While, conventional Judaism teaches that God revealed the Torah to Moses, eccentric forms of Judaism recognize the insights and approaches of modern biblical scholarship (Rosenberg pg.32). The Torah tells the story of the foundation of Judaism. More importantly, Torah consists of the defining cornerstone on...

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