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The First Commandment and Christology

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Year: 2017
COI code: ICJE01_110
Paper Language: English

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Authors The First Commandment and Christology

Odeh Muhawesh - PhD Adjunct Professor of Theology at University of St. Thomas


The Ten Commandments form the basis of moral law in Judaism,Christianity, and Islam. All three religions agree that the first and greatestcommandment is the call to believe in one god and not take any others besideshim. The main theme of the Quran is monotheism. All Surahs of the Quranstress the importance of believing in one God and make clear that moraldeviation and torment stem from violating this commandment. The commandto worship only Allah is what Jesus also refers to in Mathew 22:37-38, forloving the Lord God with all of one’s heart, soul, and mind is how Muslimsdefine worship to be. Therefore, Muslims and Christians can rely on thiscommandment to collaborate on building peaceful and just societies.However, Muslims and Christians differ on whether the Trinity andChristology teachings violate this commandment. While Christians believe theTrinity to adhere to the monotheistic creed, Muslims consider the Trinity aflagrant violation of the Oneness of God. In fact, the verse 4:171of the Qurandirectly addresses the Trinity and rejects its teachings. Upon examiningJesus’s statements in the Bible, Muslims and Christians can come to anagreement on what Jesus truly taught about the First Commandment and hisrole as the Messiah. In an encounter with Jesus as narrated by Mathew, Jesusdifferentiates between himself and God, Why do you call Me good No oneis good but One, that is, God, (Matthew 19:17). Jesus’ objection to beingcalled Good contradicts many statements accorded to him in the Biblewhere he clearly taught of his holiness and noble character. Research into theoriginal words attributed to Jesus by Mathew reveals that the English versionof this verse is incorrectly translated. Some scholars translate this directlyfrom Aramaic as: Benevolent educator . This translation is also problematicsince Jesus and many others are benevolent. Therefore, one can conclude thatthe term meant something which Jesus knew could only be attributed to theDevine. Furthermore, Christians point to certain biblical verses as evidence ofhigh Christology. Examining those verses could support the Muslim view thusforming a basis of a new insight of what the Bible says about Jesus, and couldreveal a fresh insight that conforms to the teachings and integrity of the FirstCommandment. This paper examines the Muslim view of the monotheisticcreed and compares it to Jesus’ biblical statements. The author concludes thatMuslim and Christian theologians can use this debate as the foundation forserious dialogue.


Islam, Christianity, commandments, monotheism, trinity, interfaith, dialogue

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COI code: ICJE01_110

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Muhawesh, Odeh, 2017, The First Commandment and Christology, Internationa Confeence on Justice and Ethics, مشهد, دانشگاه فردوسي مشهد, the text, wherever referred to or an achievement of this article is mentioned, after mentioning the article, inside the parental, the following specifications are written.
First Time: (Muhawesh, Odeh, 2017)
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