Similarities

There are many similarities between Judaism, Christianity and Islam.  There is general agreement that God is the Creator, and is the God of Abraham.  The concept of God is exactly the same in Judaism and Islam, as in the First Commandment   The names of God in the Semitic languages are similar.

Islam is the second largest religion in the world after Christianity. As a monotheistic faith that originated in the Middle East, Islam holds many beliefs and practices in common with Judaism and Christianity.

Judaism, Islam and Christianity are collectively known as “Abrahamic religions” because they trace their history to the covenant God made with Abraham in the Hebrew Bible.

The Prophet Muhammad met both Jews and Christians during his lifetime, and Islam has come into frequent contact with both of its fellow monotheistic faiths throughout most of its history.

As a brief guide of the similarities and differences of Islam, Judaism and Christianity, the following chart compares the statistics, origins, history and religious beliefs of these three great monotheistic faiths.

Please note that, as with all charts of this kind, the information is oversimplified and should not be used as a sole resource.

Comparison of Statistics and Basics

Islam
Judaism
Christianity
adherents called
Muslims
Jews
Christians
current adherents
1.3 billion
14 million
2 billion
current size rank
2nd largest
12th largest
largest
major concentration
Middle East, Southeast Asia
Israel, Europe, USA
Europe, North and South America, rapid growth in Africa
sacred text
Qur’an (Koran)
Bible
Bible (Jewish Bible + New Testament)
other written authority
Hadith
Talmud, Midrash, Responsa
church fathers, church councils, papal decrees (Catholic only)
religious law
Sharia
Halakhah
Canon Law
clergy
imams
rabbis
priests, ministers, pastors, bishops
house of worship
mosque
synagogue
church, chapel, cathedral
main day of worship
Friday
Saturday
Sunday
church and state
integrated
separate
separate

Comparison of Origins and History

Islam
Judaism
Christianity
date founded
622 CE
unknown
c. 33 CE
place founded
Saudi Arabia
Palestine (def)
Palestine
founder
Muhammad
Moses or Abraham
Jesus
original language(s)
Arabic
Hebrew
Aramaic, Greek
early expansion
within 12 years, entire Arabian peninsula; within 100 years, Muslim world stretched from the Atlantic to China
little expansion; mostly confined to Palestine
within 60 years, churches in major cities in Palestine, Turkey, Greece and Rome (map); entire Roman Empire by end of 4th cent.
major splits
Shia/Sunni, c. 650 CE
Reform/Orthodox, 1800s CE
Catholic/Orthodox, 1054 CE; Catholic/Protestant, 1500s CE

Comparison of Religious Beliefs

Islam
Judaism
Christianity
type of theism
strict monotheism
strict monotheism
Trinitarian monotheism
ultimate reality
one God
one God
one God
names of God
Allah (Arabic for God)
Yahweh, Elohim
Yahweh, the Holy Trinity
other spiritual beings
angels, demons, jinn
angels and demons
angels and demons
revered humans
prophets, imams (especially in Shia)
prophets
saints, church fathers
identity of Jesus
true prophet of God, whose message has been corrupted
false prophet
Son of God, God incarnate, savior of the world
birth of Jesus
virgin birth
normal birth
virgin birth
death of Jesus
did not die, but ascended into heaven during crucifixion
death by crucifixion
death by crucifixion
resurrection of Jesus
denied
denied
affirmed
second coming of Jesus
affirmed
denied
affirmed
divine revelation
through Muhammad, recorded in Qur’an
through Prophets, recorded in Bible
through Prophets and Jesus (as God Himself), recorded in Bible
view of sacred text
inspired, literal word of God, inerrant in original languages
views vary
inspired, some believe inerrant in original languages
human nature
equal ability to do good or evil
two equal impulses, one good and one bad
“original sin” inherited from Adam – tendency towards evil
means of salvation
correct belief, good deeds, Five Pillars
belief in God, good deeds
correct belief, faith, good deeds, sacraments (some Protestants emphasize faith alone)
God’s role in salvation
predestination
divine revelation and forgiveness
predestination, various forms of grace
good afterlife
eternal paradise
views vary: either heaven or no afterlife
eternal heaven
bad afterlife
eternal hell
views vary: either eternal Gehenna, reincarnation, or no afterlife
eternal hell, temporary purgatory (Catholicism)
view of fellow Abrahamic religions
Jews and Christians are respected as “People of the Book,” but they have wrong beliefs and only partial revelation.
Islam and Christianity are false interpretations and extensions of Judaism.
Judaism is a true religion, but with incomplete revelation. Islam is a false religion.


Courtesy of ReligionFacts.

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