Comparing Three World Religions With Middle Eastern Beginnings
In William A. Young’s book entitled, The World Religions - Worldviews and Contemporary Issues (Fourth Edition), Young presents the major religions of the world using a fundamentally descriptive method that is “historical, comparative and – above all – phenomenological” (Young 14). With his basic definition of religion as “the human transformation in response to perceived ultimacy” (Young 15). Young methodically answers seven basic questions in establishing a basic framework for understanding and comparing the worldviews of the major religions.
Common Middle Eastern Heritage
This essay will limit its scope to exploring the three religions presented in Young’s book that are monotheistic and have their beginnings from the Middle East: Judaism, Christianity and Islam. The believers of these three religions comprise over 55% of the world’s current population and are found in almost every major country of the world.
Judaism, Christianity, and Islam are intimately linked to one another because of their historical beginnings as well as their common understanding of a monotheistic God who cares about creation. All three religions recognize the same “one true God” of Adam, Abraham, and Moses, as written in the Old Testament. Legal scholar Paul Golomb points out “that the God of Israel is indeed the true God” (Golomb). Authors Jacob Neusner and Bruce D. Chilton state in the preface of their book entitled, “The Body…