Jesus is believed to have been born before the first year by many historians what have come to be known as Common Era. He is believed to have been born in Bethlehem due to prophesy which was made in the Old Testament. Jesus roots can be traced back through David to the father of faith Abraham. Luke traces his steps up to the Adam and the son of God. Jesus was born of the mother Mary whom until his conception she was virgin. She conceived of the Holy Spirit. The husband of Mary was Joseph who was a carpenter from Bethlehem.
Jesus was born in a stable of animals where they had gone for Census in their ancestral land according to the rules of Rome but there was no space for them. His name Jesus meant God saves. The humility with which he was born with exemplify Jesus taught. As well those who came to pay tribute were the poor shepherds. His early childhood it not explained until when he was twelve where he accompanied his parent to Jerusalem where they had gone to celebrate Passover. Here he was mistakenly left out where he was found later discussing the Torah with the teachers (Rabbis).
Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist at the age of 30 in River Jordan where he saw the heavens open and saw the Holy Spirit descent to him
Mohammed was born from a poor clan but from the tribe thought to be the most powerful in the area. Mohammed can be traced back to Abram who bore a child with his servant Hagar. The child was called Isma’il. His wife Sarah was very jealous and Abraham took them to the desert of Mecca in Arabia to spare them. Mohammed is believed to be the person who received the revelations of the holy book Qur’an. According to Mohammed it is Isma’il and Abram who made the holiest worshiping place in Islam which was called Ka’bah. This was thought to be the place from where Adam worshiped.
The father of Mohammed died before he was born. His mother then followed suit and later his grandfather. Mohammed then was taken by his uncle who gave his work as a shepherd. Mohammed is said to have been taking spiritual retreats in the cave which was the holiest place of worship and it is from here that he is believed to have received the first revelation of the Islam’s holy book Qur’an. He was married to wife Khadijah. Prophet Mohammed died in the year 632.
After his death Christianity became the main religion of the Roman Empire. The disciples of Jesus Christ continued to spread the gospel which their leader had told them. These were mainly the disciples. The disciples were guided by the Holy Spirit which appeared to them in a gathering like a wind. Among those who spread the teaching of Jesus was Paul who saw the light even after Jesus had died. He used to persecute Christians but his mission was changed after he was baptized. Paul’s mission now was to convince the Jews about the life of Jesus and how it was predicted in the Old Testament. Some of the Jews accepted and were converted. But Paul was constantly accused of straying followers from the law of the Jews.
It soon Christianity soon spread to many places and became a non Jew thing although it was still facing a lot of opposition and challenge.
After his death his close friend Abu Bakr was chosen to succeed him since he had not stated clearly who was to take his position. He was given the title Caliph to mean successor to the prophet. Many Islam faithful emulated his teachings even after his death. Although it is traditionally believed that before the death of the prophet Mohammed he transferred his spiritual light to Fatima the daughter he loved most. Mohammed never claimed any supernatural power and so the Muslims only follow his good deeds. He was of a noble character, he had humility, kindness. He had passion for widows, orphans. He endured poverty in his mission. The Muslim mission has now been reforming the society, to bring to end corruption and oppression, leading others to doing that which is good, being happy of what is right and condemning that which isn’t good. They work towards creating some moral order in the society in line with the God’s commandment.
Over the time Christianity has developed with internal divisions and misunderstanding among the follower. Some feel that the others don’t do what is supposed to be done and others feel what they do to be the right thing. One of the key division occurred in the Roman Catholic Church where it split from the Orthodox Church. The church at this time was divided according to locations where there were the eastern and the western. Here they were divided into several sections although they observed the same spiritually. All regarded as successors of the initial apostles. They could all perform all the duties accorded to them equally. Rome was regarded to be of primacy honor but it was not supreme in power and actions.
The leaders and followers of the East never recognized the pope of the Roman who claimed to have the universal power and authority in the church.
There arose some disagreements in the doctrines in the early middle ages. This happened when the church of the west added some part name filioque which professed that the Holy Spirit came from the father and from the son; in this context the church from the east considered that the holy spirit came only from the father to be more original and retained it.
It emerged later that the leaders from the both side of the religious divide got rid of each other in claims of the Holy Spirit. Another issue was the celibacy for priests, the eastern believed that only the bishops alone should practice celibacy unlike the Western who believed that that priest also should practice it. Another disagreement was on whether the Eucharistic bread should be leavened or not.
Divisions in Islam started as soon as Prophet Mohammed died. The major cause of all this was on the decision of who was to succeed him. These divisions have generated the Sunni comprising of almost eighty percent and Shi’a the rest. The leaders to succeed Mohammed were called Caliph with the first three chosen from his close friends. The fourth who was Prophets Son-in-law, Ali was holy and of good qualities but nevertheless some of the groups never recognized him to be their leader. Due to this he was killed by one of his own party members. Then another Caliph was elected from Umayyad dynasty. The son of the late Ali questioned how the fifth Caliph chose his son to succeed him. This led to their killing by the opposing group in the desert.
During this killing most of the members of the prophet lineage were killed. The killing due to the belief caused division where the Shi’a Muslim was unified and they broke away from the rest. They still are separated till today.
The Shi’a and the Sunni differ strictly in their belief about succession where the Shi’a believe that Ali was the right person to succeed Mohammed because before his death he had taken him and uttered something to that effect. He is believed to have said that whoever “whoever he protect Ali is also his protector.” Due to this they believed that the caliphate should be based on this spiritual gesture as well as authority although temporary.
On the other hand the Sunni follow an elected Caliph considering themselves traditionalists who follow the authority of the Holy Qur’an. They rely on the believe that Mohammed died without choosing a successor and therefore consider the first four successors to be the right ones because they had got the teachings directly from the prophet.
Jesus and Mohammed could not approve how their messages are been carried out in the world today. This however does not generalize all the followers. Some Christians have misinterpreted the bible and misled people of God. For example most of the church leaders have turned churches into business where one has to pay some amount of money in order to get any attention from them.
People have been forced to pay money in order to be prayed for when sick or when they want to receive ant miracle. These pastors cheat their follower that the more you pay the higher the chances of receiving your miracle. These have been termed as prosperity preachers who have turned gospel from the repentance and holiness form to the current of business gospel.
Other preachers have become so evil whereby they take some followers especially girls and lured them into sexual sin.On the other hand Mohammed advocated for peace and he will not in any way approve the recent killing by some Muslims who claim to be defending their faith.
Esposito L.J. (2004). The Oxford Dictionary of Islam. USA: Oxford University Press
Green, B. J. et al (1992). Dictionary of Jesus and the Gospel (The IVP Bible Series), USA:
The Holy Bible
The Holy Qur’an