World Religions Part 1

There are thought to be 376 million Buddhists, one billion Hindus, and 1.6 billion Muslims. Where did these religions come from? What do they believe? And how can we reach them with the truth of Christ?

Day One: Buddhism
Buddhism is one of the leading world religions in terms of adherents, geographical distribution, and socio-cultural influence. While largely an "Eastern" religion, it is becoming increasingly popular and influential in the Western world...
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Day Two: Hinduism
Hinduism is one of the oldest known organized religions—its sacred writings date as far back as 1400 to 1500 B.C. It is also one of the most diverse and complex, having millions of gods. Hindus have a wide variety of core beliefs and exist in many different sects...
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For more on Hinduism, see "Witnessing to Hindus — what is the key?"

Day Three: Sikhism
Sikhism arose as an attempt to harmonize Islam and Hinduism. But viewing Sikhism as a harmonization of the two religions does not capture the theological and cultural uniqueness of Sikhism...
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Day Four: Confucianism
Confucianism, a religion of optimistic humanism, has had a monumental impact upon the life, social structure, and political philosophy of China. The founding of the religion goes back to one man, known as Confucius, born 500 years before Christ...
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Day Five: Islam
Islam is a religious system begun in the seventh century by Muhammad. Muslims follow the teachings of the Qur'an and strive to keep the Five Pillars...
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For more on Islam, see "Witnessing to Muslims — what is the key?"

Day Six: Baha'i
The Baha'i faith is one of the newer world religions stemming originally from Shi'ite Islam in Persia (modern-day Iran). However, it has come to achieve a unique status of its own...
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Day Seven: Judaism
What is Judaism, and who or what is a Jew? Is Judaism simply a religion? Is it a cultural identity or just an ethnic group? Are Jews a clan of people or are they a nation? What do Jews believe, and do they all believe the same things?...
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Day Eight: Roman Catholicism
The Roman Catholic Church portrays itself as the one legitimate heir to New Testament Christianity, and the pope as the successor to Peter, the first bishop of Rome. While those details are debatable, there is no question that Roman church history reaches back to ancient times...
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For more on Catholicism, see "Witnessing to Catholics — what is the key?"

Day Nine: Eastern Orthodox
The Eastern Orthodox Church is not a single church but rather a family of 13 self-governing bodies, denominated by the nation in which they are located (e.g., the Greek Orthodox Church, Russian Orthodox Church). They are united in their understanding of the sacraments, doctrine, liturgy, and church government, but each administers its own affairs...
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Day Ten: Christianity
The core beliefs of Christianity are summarized in 1 Corinthians 15:1-4. Jesus died for our sins, was buried, was resurrected, and thereby offers salvation to all who will receive Him in faith...
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Image Credit: Ben Sutherland; "Symbols of all religions and faiths"; Creative Commons

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Published 10-8-15