Do Christians and Muslims Worship The Same God?

I was faced with this question at a Deacons meeting last night at my church. As part of the devotional time at the beginning of the meeting one of the Deacons made a comment and gave a short presentation that basically said that the God of Christianity is the same god the Muslims worship. I don’t think anyone was aware of the content of the devotion before he gave it.

To say that I was stunned would be a great understatement. I even asked for clarification from him to make sure I understood what he meant. Unfortunately, I heard him correctly. I attend a small, very traditional Southern Baptist Church in a small town in East Tennessee. Our disagreements are not usually over something this…..substantive. Since I was unaware of the need to be prepared for something of this importance I was forced to object to his presentation from memory. As is normally the case, I thought of much more I could have said after I got home that night and was thinking about it. I also consulted a pastor friend who was able to give me a few questions to bring to this brother.

I was able to mention 3 or 4 things that made it very clear that the God of Christianity is not the god of Islam. The things I mentioned were: 1)Muslims do not believe that Jesus was the Son of God but that He was only a mortal prophet, like any other prophet and second to Mohammad, 2)Muslims do not believe that Jesus was crucified…they believe that someone else was crucified on the cross for Him, 3)Muslims believe in a works based salvation…not by grace through faith. None of these are Biblical.

If you truly believe that we worship the same God you have to ask yourself a couple very important questions. Why would the same God give different revelations about Himself to different people groups? And next, If He did give different revelations about Himself does that mean that the different paths to salvation in these different revelations are both equally valid since they lead to the same God?

I have not done any extensive research about the differences between Christianity and Islam but I have done some basic study on the topic. I will be starting to do some more research now as I need to prepare myself to be able to discuss this issue with my brother in Christ and so that maybe God can use me in some way to bring him back from this error and crisis he is going through.

If you have any suggestions on good material (books, websites, etc.) that might help me I would appreciate it. Just post a comment with the reference.

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28 Responses to Do Christians and Muslims Worship The Same God?

  1. claudioperez says:

    This is an issue and perhaps a book called Unveiling Islam: An Insider’s Look at Muslim Life and Beliefs by Ergun Mehmet Caner is a good place to look for guidance. Muslims believe that the Kuran is God’s word, somewhat similar in status to what Christ is to Christianity. Muslims believe that their religion is the completion of the Judeo-Christian Religions and that their God’s are one and the same. If one looks at it historically the Monotheistic religions in Europe and Eastern block as well as the middle east began with Jewish teachings and then shifted to Christianity after Constantine converted. Christianity called itself the fulfillment of Judaism and the new law. This is the same position Islam hopes to take in relation to Christianity. Islam is in fact the Monotheistic religion of the Arab world. Is it the same God? Theoretically it could be seeing that Muslims seek to assimilate Christianity into its teachings and cast differences aside sighting human error and corruption of the texts.

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  2. Scavenger says:

    Islam is antichrist. 100% through and through.

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  3. Blake says:

    No it’s not the same god, they worship the ancient moon god…of the middle east.

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  4. Brett says:

    I think there is a simple way to approach this question. Do a simple study of the nature and attributes of God according to Christianity and the nature and attributes of Allah according to Islam. Compare the two and you have your answer.

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  5. Tom says:

    Brett,

    I found a comparison of the different beliefs on many topics online but I have not had time to review it thoroughly yet. I like the approach though, it is very logical and will show the contradictions clearly.

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  6. billphillips says:

    Tom,

    I think I’ve heard you say this in a previous conversation, but the clearest thing to me is that Jesus and the Holy Spirit are just as much my God as the Father is. If someone doesn’t claim Jesus as their God, then we clearly don’t have the same God.

    As far as info on Islam, I like Carm.org. They have quite a bit of info on each of the major religions.

    Thanks,
    Bill

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  7. Tom says:

    Bill,

    Yes, there is ONE God in three persons. I agree that anyone who denies the deity of Jesus cannot be worshiping the God of the Bible.

    I really like CARM. Lots of useful information there.

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  8. l3rucewayne says:

    “Understanding the Koran: A Quick Christian Guide to the Muslim Holy Book.” by Mateen, Elas. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2003. I’m going to read that I think to get a better understanding of that world view. It was recommended in a book edited by Ravi Zacharias and Norman Geisler by Geisler. It might be useful for you, perhaps check out a review or two and the description to see if it has stuff of interest to you. I think that the Jewish people worship the same God the Father that Christians do, but don’t accept the divinity of Jesus.

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  9. l3rucewayne says:

    By the way, In a recent broadcast by Ravi, He said that very few muslims will refer to their god as a god of love. A god of compassion yes, but not in the sense of loving you for your own sake. Does that help any?

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  10. Odin says:

    The real question seems to be, “Is my God big enough to accept different followers?”

    If I say you and I worship the same God, and you say we do not, then which is true?

    As a 14th century pope wrote, “there is nothing compulsory about faith.” E.g. We all CHOOSE what we believe and CHOOSE what we abandon.

    Muslims might say they worship the same God as Abraham and Moses. We Christians would agree, until we demanded the tradition of our trinity to be placed between the Muslim and his God.

    I figure, like Chris Rice sings, God is big enough for all these questions. Further, God is too big for complete human analysis.

    Merry Christmas!

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  11. Tom says:

    Odin said

    The real question seems to be, “Is my God big enough to accept different followers?”

    At first that sounds correct but it needs a little more analysis. God is definitely big enough to accept different followers but the real question is: Does He give the same revelation to everyone or does He give different revelations to different groups?

    If it is the same God then you would assume that He would give the same revelation to everyone. But this in not the case when you think of Christians and Muslims. To Christians He gave the Bible and to Muslims He gave the Koran. In these revelations, He is described in two completely and sometimes contradictory ways. There are also different paths to salvation given. Now, why would the same God give differing descriptions of Himself and different paths to salvation?

    There are only a couple possible answers. 1)The differing accounts are all true somehow. 2)One group is being deceived. 3)Both groups are being deceived. 4)It is not the same God. When you compare the attributes of God in each revelation you will find that the two are contradictory at many points. This eliminates possibilities 1, 2, and 3 and we are left with only 4…that we are not talking about the same God. Once this is established we can then move on to the next step…which is evangelism.

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  12. seekeronos says:

    What does Scripture say about the false god (idol) called Allah?

    John 14:6:
    “Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”

    1 John 5:10-
    “—-
    11. And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son.
    12. He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life.
    13. These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God
    —-”

    1 John 5:20-21
    “—-
    20. And we know that the Son of God is come, and hath given us an understanding, that we may know him that is true, and we are in him that is true, even in his Son JESUS Christ. This is the TRUE GOD, and eternal life.
    21. Little children, keep yourselves from idols. Amen.
    —-”

    —————————————————————————–

    The Qu’ran on the other hand, provides this:

    Sura 23:91 – “[23:91] GOD has never begotten a son. Nor was there ever any other god beside Him. Otherwise, each god would have declared independence with his creations, and they would have competed with each other for dominance. GOD be glorified; far above their claims.”

    Who shall we believe – the god (little “g”) of this world with his satanic, antichrist deception that leads men astray from the truth, or the Son of the Living God who has redeemed us for Himself with His own blood?

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  13. Tom says:

    Seekeronos,

    Thanks for stopping by my blog. You make some good points here. It seems to be a simple thing to determine that the God of Christianity is not the same god worshiped in Islam.

    Like

  14. Zaynab s says:

    I would just like to say after reading some of the comments, if i was a christian would feel like they havent answered my question with logic or reason…im a muslim but im no scholar, i have the one and only book to guide me and in that are all my answers, and heres a preview of what we beleive, before i start to the delinquent that stated that ISLAM IS ANTICHRIST i suggest you seek knowledge, as islam is not antichrist, antichrist is Dajjal, how can we possibly be antichrists, it dosent make sense, we beleive in the coming of antichrist aswell as christians and he described as a short ONE EYED MAN WITH THE words Kaafir (NON BELEIVER) tattooed on his forehead..anyhow we beleive chrstians and jews to be the PEOPLE OF THE BOOK, reason being is because the bible and torah was sent down for us as in muslims, like the quran, we only follow the quran because as you would agree to the bible has been changed within time, so has the torah and the quran on the ther hand has never been altered or changed, its the word of god it hasnt been touched and thats why we follow it practically, and in this same quran it says that allah sent down the bible, the torah , allah sent down prophets..abraham moses jesus muhammed may peace be upon them all, with one message which is there is one god and no other who has no partners no mother no father NO SON, all these prophets had the same message…the quran also states that Allah (swt) sent down messengers some you ridculed, some you killed and some u worshipped…so our fundemental beleif is that christians are the people of the book, because they were given the bible , even though they changed it according to what would suit them best, we beleive that jews and christians have partial beleif. so in other words we do beleive that christians and jews are MEANT TO worship the same god..but overtime because u changed ur own books, i dont have a clue who u follow and who u beleive…and mayb thats y the speaker said that we beleive in the same god..anyhow theres this one debate between a christian and a muslim and this really helped my understanding of the religions…i hope i didnt offend ne body with my beleifs..and yes i didnt state what i said the exact verses from the quran…but if you would like exact refrences i will be more than happy to go through my quran and find em as these were some i remebered from the top of my head..x

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  15. Zaynab s says:

    Something else that i would like to add, and i do hope this helps you..and please dont think im bashing christians, but im just helping this man seek knowledge and broaden his horizons… u can check up on all the refrences, and mayb u will find ways in which ur right and thats fine, as long as your happy and satified with ur religion it mayb judaism, buddhism or wiccca..but its important to be content with what u beleive…either beleive blindly and follow the crowd..or be open minded seek knowledge and find the truth if even in the end u dont find the truth its the journey and experiance that counts..

    Position of Jesus (pbuh) in Islam:

    (i)
    Islam is the only non-Christian faith, which makes it an article of faith to believe in Jesus (pbuh). No Muslim is a Muslim if he does not believe in Jesus (pbuh).

    (ii)
    We believe that he was one of the mightiest Messengers of Allah (swt).

    (iii)
    We believe that he was born miraculously, without any male intervention, which many modern day Christians do not believe.

    (iv)

    We believe he was the Messiah translated Christ (pbuh).

    (v)
    We believe that he gave life to the dead with God’s permission.

    (iv)
    We believe that he healed those born blind, and the lepers with God’s permission.

    II
    CONCEPT OF GOD IN CHRISTIANITY:

    1.
    Jesus Christ (pbuh) never claimed Divinity

    One may ask, if both Muslims and Christians love and respect Jesus (pbuh), where exactly is the parting of ways? The major difference between Islam and Christianity is the Christians’ insistence on the supposed divinity of Christ (pbuh). A study of the Christian scriptures reveals that Jesus (pbuh) never claimed divinity. In fact there is not a single unequivocal statement in the entire Bible where Jesus (pbuh) himself says, “I am God” or where he says, “worship me”. In fact the Bible contains statements attributed to Jesus (pbuh) in which he preached quite the contrary. The following statements in the Bible are attributed to Jesus Christ (pbuh):

    (i) “My Father is greater than I.”
    [The Bible, John 14:28]

    (ii) “My Father is greater than all.”
    [The Bible, John 10:29]

    (iii) “…I cast out devils by the Spirit of God….”
    [The Bible, Mathew 12:28]

    (iv) “…I with the finger of God cast out devils….”
    [The Bible, Luke 11:20]

    (v) “I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgement is just; because I seek not my own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me.”
    [The Bible, John 5:30]

    2.
    The Mission of Jesus Christ (pbuh) – to Fulfill the Law

    Jesus (pbuh) never claimed divinity for himself. He clearly announced the nature of his mission. Jesus (pbuh) was sent by God to confirm the previous Judaic law. This is clearly evident in the following statements attributed to Jesus (pbuh) in the Gospel of Mathew:

    “Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the Prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil. For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.

    “Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven; but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.”
    “For I say unto you, That except your righteousness shall exceed the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven.”
    [The Bible, Mathew 5:17-20]

    3.
    God Sent Jesus’ (pbuh)

    The Bible mentions the prophetic nature of Jesus (pbuh) mission in the following verses:

    (i)

    “… and the word which ye hear is not mine, but the Father’s which sent me.”
    [The Bible, John 14:24]

    (ii)

    “And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou has sent.”
    [The Bible, John 17:3]

    4.
    Jesus Refuted even the Remotest Suggestion of his Divinity

    Consider the following incident mentioned in the Bible:

    “And behold, one came and said unto him, ‘Good Master, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life?’

    And he said unto him, ‘Why callest thou me good? There is none good but one, that is, God: but if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments.’ ”
    [The Bible, Mathew 19:16-17]

    Jesus (pbuh) did not say that to have the eternal life of paradise, man should believe in him as Almighty God or worship him as God, or believe that Jesus (pbuh) would die for his sins. On the contrary he said that the path to salvation was through keeping the commandments. It is indeed striking to note the difference between the words of Jesus Christ (pbuh) and the Christian dogma of salvation through the sacrifice of Jesus (pbuh).

    5.
    Jesus (pbuh) of Nazareth – a Man Approved of God

    The following statement from the Bible supports the Islamic belief that Jesus (pbuh) was a prophet of God.

    “Ye men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know.”
    [The Bible, Acts 2:22]

    6.
    The First Commandment is that God is One

    The Bible does not support the Christian belief in trinity at all. One of the scribes once asked Jesus (pbuh) as to which was the first commandment of all, to which Jesus (pbuh) merely repeated what Moses (pbuh) had said earlier:

    “Shama Israelu Adonai Ila Hayno Adonai Ikhad.”

    This is a Hebrew quotation, which means:

    “Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord.”
    [The Bible, Mark 12:29]

    It is striking that the basic teachings of the Church such as Trinity and vicarious atonement find no mention in the Bible. In fact, various verses of the Bible point to Jesus’ (pbuh) actual mission, which was to fulfill the law revealed to Prophet Moses (pbuh). Indeed Jesus (pbuh) rejected any suggestions that attributed divinity to him, and explained his miracles as the power of the One True God.
    Jesus (pbuh) thus reiterated the message of monotheism that was given by all earlier prophets of Almighty God.

    NOTE: All quotations of the Bible are taken from the King James Version.

    III
    CONCEPT OF GOD IN OLD TESTAMENT:

    1.
    God is One

    The following verse from the book of Deuteronomy contains an exhortation from Moses (pbuh):

    “Shama Israelu Adonai Ila Hayno Adna Ikhad”.
    It is a Hebrew quotation which means:
    “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God is one Lord”
    [The Bible, Deuteronomy 6:4]

    2.
    Unity of God in the Book of Isaiah

    The following verses are from the Book of Isaiah:

    (i)

    “I, even I, am the Lord; and beside me there is no saviour.”
    [The Bible, Isaiah 43:11]

    (ii)

    “I am Lord, and there is none else, there is no God besides me.”
    [The Bible, Isaiah 45:5]

    (iii)

    “I am God, and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like me.”
    [The Bible, Isaiah 46:9]

    3.

    Old Testament condemns idol worship

    (i)

    Old Testament condemns idol worship in the following verses:

    “Thou shalt have no other gods before me.”

    “Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth:”

    “Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God.”
    [The Bible, Exodus 20:3-5]

    (ii)

    A similar message is repeated in the book of Deuteronomy:

    “Thou shalt have none other gods before me.”

    “Thou shalt not make thee any graven image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that in the earth beneath, or that is in the water beneath the earth.”

    “Thou shalt not bow down thyself unto them, nor serve them; for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God.”
    [The Bible, Deuteronomy 5:7-9]

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  16. Aleksandar says:

    Let`s see… The Bible vs. the noble (PUBH) quran.

    John 14:6
    ‘I am the way, the truth, the life. No one gets to the Father but by Me’
    Here is a sweet verse for muslims to ignore while reading.

    John 3:16
    ‘For God so loved the world that gave His only begotten Son…’
    Here we go, another one to ignore…

    IF YOU WANT TO DELUDE YOUR SELF, DON`T READ MORE.

    Here:
    1 John 2:22
    ‘Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son.’

    And here is the key, He, Jesus himself said He is the Son of God.
    John 9:35-38.
    ‘Jesus heard that they had cast him out; and finding him, he said, Dost thou believe on the Son of God? He answered and said, And who is he, Lord, that I may believe on him? Jesus said unto him, Thou hast both seen him, and he it is that speaketh with thee. And he said, Lord, I believe. And he worshipped him.’

    Opposites the quran, doesn`t it? So as it is written there somewhere god has no son, or to be precise in The Women 4.171.

    And (pubh), as written in the quran, why is it later written in surah 9:29-30 ‘Fight Christians and Jews…’?

    So do we still worship the same?

    Noup…

    P.S. Here. If your mathematics aren`t your strong point, I am gonna help you a bit…

    The Trinity ISN`T:
    1+1+1=1

    The Trinity IS:
    1^3=1x1x1=1 Written in: 1 John 5:7

    Like

  17. Tom says:

    Aleksandar,

    I like the way you do math.

    Like

  18. Drewby says:

    Just an observation here…Jews don’t believe in a triune God. Jews believe in a works-based system. It’s very orthopractic (Jewishness is defined by your holding to the law and the covenant). I just wonder why they aren’t held to the same standards as Muslims…I mean, going by that, I would suggest that Jews don’t believe in the same God as Christians do either….

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    • Tom Shelton says:

      Drewby,

      Interesting point. I do think that Jews are held to the same standard as far as salvation is concerned. Only repentance and faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior can get a person into Heaven. This applies to all people no matter what religion they follow.

      I also think the fact the Jesus was Jewish affects this. He, and the Apostles always went first the the Jews in preaching the Kingdom. They taught it was the same God. The Bible records this. If we believe the Bible to be true, then we must accept this.

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      • Drewby says:

        So the Christian scriptures teach that they are speaking of the same God as the Jewish scriptures…and the Islamic scriptures teach that they are speaking of the same God as the Christian scriptures. I just don’t understand why there’s such a double standard here. Neither has a more “valid” claim than the other, besides the fact that they say what they say.

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        • Tom Shelton says:

          Not a double standard at all. To see the obvious difference compare the attributes of the God of the Bible and the attributes of the god of islam. This will show you that they are not speaking of the same being.

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          • Drewby says:

            I think that’s a poor argument. The same argument could be made about the God of the Tanakh and the God of the Christian scriptures. Or, for that matter, the God of the Gospels and the God of St. Paul’s letters. We harmonize when we need to, and we point out differences when we need to. The whole of Judeo-Christian-Islamic corpus of scripture, doctrines, theologies, etc represents a wide spectrum of what “God” is, but every one of them aims to serve the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.

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  19. Tom Shelton says:

    Drewby,

    It is not a poor argument. If you list the attributes of the God of the Bible along side the attributes of the god of Islam you will see that they cannot be the same being. It is impossible for them to be the same being.

    For example, the God of the Bible teaches a faith based salvation. The god of Islam teaches a works based salvation. The God of the Bible gives assurance of salvation to those who are elect. The god of Islam give no assurance of salvation. The God of the Bible loves his creation/creatures so much that He entered it in order to restore the relationship. The god of Islam won’t have anything to do with his creation. I could go on an on. If you do a search on the internet, you will find much detailing these differences.

    Also, I have no problem with people comparing / contrasting the God of the Bible to the other false gods that are out there. Such an effort will either lead them to the true God or will serve to further their condemnation. Either way, God is glorified.

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    • Drewby says:

      The God of the NT teaches a faith based salvation. The God of the OT teaches a salvation of works (the law). Islam teaches a salvation of faith and works (And fear the fire, which is prepared for those who reject faith, Sura 3:131).

      And look, I understand that it’s important for you to assert that Muslims worship a separate God from the Christians, because if that couldn’t be proven, then that gives credence to the Islamic idea that Muhammad represents the same God and same message as the previous prophets. But the Christian reaction to Islam is the same as the Jewish reaction to Christianity. Both see the following religions as heresy, as incorrect, as false, etc. Every side has its reasons for believing what it believes, and will emphasize certain scriptures and traditions while explaining or downplaying others. The point is, none of them has any more legitimate a claim than the other. It’s simply a matter of choice. But to outright say that Christians and Muslims don’t worship the same God is like a Jew saying Christians don’t worship the same God that they do. I’m sure that Christians would disagree, but the Jew wouldn’t have any of it. With this disagreement, the Muslim would say yes, we worship the same God as you, but the Christian wouldn’t have any of that. All three mean to worship the same God, but they see him in many, many, many different ways.

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  20. Tom Shelton says:

    The God of the OT does not teach a salvation of works. The Law is given but not as a way of salvation because it is impossible (except for Jesus) for anyone to keep the Law. The purpose of the Law was to point people to their need of a savior and a salvation that is only available by faith. Therefore, the God of the OT and the God of the NT teach the same thing because it is the same God.

    Like

    • Drewby says:

      No, I’m sorry, but it really doesn’t. You can’t make an honest examination of the OT and come to that conclusion without reading back Christian theology into the text. After all, the OT is not particularly concerned with the afterlife, and sin in the OT is an act, not a state. There’s no state of original sin from which to be saved. And for that matter, the purpose of the law is not to point people to their need of a savior. It’s a covenant that is entered into by the people of Israel and God. Israelites keep the law, and God blesses them and makes them his people. Israelites break the law, and God punishes them. That’s the paradigm with which the Jewish people have always understood history. Yes, Christianity is a reaction to that legalism, and that’s fine, but understand that the legalism did originally exist in the OT (and still does in Judaism).

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  21. Tom Shelton says:

    The Bible should be allowed to interpret itself. The only way for that to be done is to interpret the OT in the way the NT writers did. With that in mind, we can see the continuity of the Biblical message and therefore the continuity of God in His dealing with His people and His creation. Anything less and we are not getting the proper understanding.

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    • Drewby says:

      I will agree that the Christian scriptures intend for the OT to be interpreted in light of their own message. But a reinterpretation of Jewish scripture does not change the fact that, objectively, when the OT was written it meant what it meant, and it did not mean what it is seen to mean now by Christians. The OT says certain things about God and man and man’s relationship to God. That can’t be changed. Certainly, the NT can look back on it and say “oh but this is what it really meant to say, this is what we believe it’s really trying to say”. But that just offers one interpretation. It doesn’t change the facts of the OT.

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