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Wednesday 12/9/15
Question: What is a messiah?
Answer: a savior who will bring peace
What percentage of people in the world
say they follow:
Christianity?_____
Islam?_____
Hinduism?_____
Buddhism?_____
Judaism?_____
No Religion?_____
7 billion people in
the world!
Abraham
“father of many nations”
Islam, Judaism, and Christianity are all ABRAHAMIC religions
(trace their roots to Abraham) and worship the SAME one God
Ishmael
“father of the
Arab peoples”
ISLAM
Isaac
“father of the
Hebrew people”
JUDAISM
SOME Jews
thought Jesus
was the messiah
CHRISTIANITY
Jews still waiting
for their messiah
JUDAISM
What is Christianity?
 2000 year old religion followed by
almost one third of the world’s
population.
 Based on the life, teachings, death and
resurrection of a first century Jew
known as Jesus, believed to be the
Christ (messiah, savior) by his followers
(thus called “Christians”).
Who was Jesus? –
The Historical Jesus
 Born, lived, and died a Jew in first century
Roman occupied Palestine
 Around age 30, took on a mission of preaching,
teaching, and healing as a traveling teacher
 Following of 12 primary disciples and many
others interested in his teachings
 Considered a political threat to Roman and
Jewish authorities, and is put to death by
crucifixion (a Roman punishment)
What did Jesus teach?
Jesus was a…
 story telling teacher who taught through
parables about the Kingdom of God.
 preacher of forgiveness for sin.
 inspirational speaker:
– “Greatest commandment”: Love God
and love others as you love yourself.
– “Golden Rule”: Do unto others as you
would have others do unto you.
What do Christians believe
about Jesus? – That Jesus…
 was the “Christ” or fulfillment of Jewish belief
that the messiah would be “king of the Jews”.
 is the “Son of God” – fully divine and fully
human.
 was resurrected - rose from the dead,
overcoming death so that others may have
“eternal life”.
 rose into heaven to live with God to help
humans.
 will come again at the “end of days” to judge
the living and the dead.
What else do Christians believe?
 God the Father lives in heaven (same
God worshiped by Jews and Muslims)
with his Son (Jesus)
 Heaven and Hell:
– Eternal life for those who are
“saved” by Jesus
– Eternal damnation for those who
are not so saved
How do Christians practice their
faith as a group?

Sacraments:
1. Baptism
2. Communion (Eucharist, Mass)
3. Confirmation
4. Confession of sins, penance, atonement
5. Marriage (“Holy Matrimony”)
6. Ordination (“Holy Orders”)
7. Healing (anointing, “Last rites”)

Sabbath celebrated on Sunday with prayer,
scripture readings, singing of hymns, a sermon or
lesson from the pastor/minister/priest, etc.
(format varies from church to church)
Holy Book –
The Christian Bible
 Old Testament: books from the Jewish
Torah – old stories of Moses, Noah, etc.
 New Testament: written after Jesus’
death, by his followers about his life and
teachings
– Four gospels about the life, teaching,
death, and resurrection of Jesus
– Other records, stories, and revelations
about the early Christian church
What are some Christian
holy days?
Two major seasons in the Christian calendar:
 Christmas – celebrating the birth of Jesus
 Easter – commemorating the resurrection of
Jesus
Christmas:
– Advent (four weeks leading up to Christmas day)
– Christmas Day (December 25th)
– Epiphany (the “twelfth day of Christmas”)
Who are Christians?
other sects/groups
 Orthodox Christians
– Greek, Russian, Coptic, and other churches of
Eastern Europe, North Africa, and Asia
 Roman Catholics
– unified under the Pope
– Over 900 million (half of all Christians)
 Protestant Churches
– Lutheran, Anglican, Episcopal, Presbyterian,
Congregational, Baptist, Methodist, etc.
 Independent/American Groups:
– Mormons , Jehovah’s Witness, etc.
What is the bare essence of
Christianity?
 A faith and life based on the person and/or
teachings of Jesus as savior, model, or inspiration
 Use of the New Testament to inform faith and
practice