Difference between Islam and Catholicism

Key Difference: Catholicism believes in Jesus Christ as the son of God, and the promised Messiah of the people. Islam believes that Jesus and Muhammad are prophets of the Lord and tasked to bring the true word of God to the people.

Islam and Catholicism are both monotheistic Abrahamic religions, meaning they can trace their common origin to Abraham. Catholicism is the largest and wealthiest sect of Christianity. Christianity, and in turn Catholicism, had originally been a sect of Judaism, which then formed into its own religion. Islam, likewise, branched out of Christianity. Many of Islam’s beliefs and laws are similar to that of Judaism and Christianity. However, Islam and Catholicism have the longest recorded history filled with conflicts, against each other and others.

Catholicism, a sect in Christianity, believes in the Holy Bible and the Roman Catholic Church. The Roman Catholic Church is the Holy See centered in Vatican, Rome, and headed by the Pope, the Bishop of Rome. Catholicism believes that Jesus is a messenger of God, as well as, God himself. In addition, they consider that only Jesus can save them from all sins, as he sacrificed his life for the sins of his people on the cross.

Islam also believes in the original texts of Judaism and Christianity, but believes that the modern texts have been corrupted. Muslims believe that the after the corruption, Allah finally sent Muhammad to sum up and to finalize the word of God. Gabriel, the angel, delivered the Qur’an to Muhammad, the prophet and the messenger. They believe that on the Day of Resurrection, Jesus and Muhammad will rise on Earth to fight the false Messiah (the Anti-Christ), and to bring all the people under the true word of God (the Qu’ran).

Both Catholic and Islam have similar practices in fasting and giving alms to the poor. Both utilize prayer beads, and take pilgrimages to receive blessings from God. However, Islam dictates the member should pray five times a day. It also prohibits foods including pork products, blood, carrion, and alcohol. All meat should be halal, i.e. come from an herbivorous animal slaughtered in the name of God by a Muslim, Jew, or Christian.

In modern times, Islam has been criticized for its strict traditional believes and its treatment of women. Even though this has been changing to some aspect due to modernization, there are some sects who force members to follow the traditional law and rules.

For more differences between the two religions, refer to the table below:

 

Islam

Catholicism

Place of Birth

Mecca, Arabia

Holy Roman Empire

Time of origin

7th century AD

4th century AD

Origin of name

From Arabic meaning “voluntary submission to God”.

From the Greek: katholikos – meaning “universal”

Place of Worship

Mosque

Church, Chapel, Cathedral

Founder

Muhammad

Jesus Christ

Definition

Allah is the one and incomparable God and the purpose of existence is to love and serve Allah

The Catholic Churchis the one true church. Particular about understanding and commitment to tradition, the sacraments, the mediation between God, communion, and the See of Rome (Vatican).

Jesus Christ

Jesus is one of the highest-ranked prophets in Islam and is born through virgin birth. He was not divine and spoke only of God’s worship. Ascended to heaven.

Jesus is the reincarnation of God, the Messiah born through virgin birth. Sacrificed for the sins of humanity. Crucified and resurrected after three days.

Holy Text

Qur'an

Bible

Prophets

Abraham, Moses, Jesus, Muhammad

Abraham, Moses

Idols

Beads

Cross, saints, pictures, beads

Clothes

Head coverings

Only clergies are expected to dress in robes

Holy days/Official Holidays

Friday (day for prayer), Eid al-Fitr on the 1st of Shawwal, marking the end of the fasting month Ramadan, and Eid al-Adha on the 10th of Dhu al-Hijjah, coinciding with the pilgrimage to Mecca.

Sunday (The Lord's Day), Advent, Christmas, Lent, Holy Week, Easter, Pentecost

Original Language

Arabic

Latin

Branches

Shia, Sunni, Sufi

Catholic Church is made up of 23 autonomous particular churches.

Reincarnation

Salvation or Damnation after death. No reincarnation.

Salvation or Damnation after death. No reincarnation.

Beliefs

God is the true creator; Only Allah should be worshipped; Everyone should obey the commandments given by Allah. Trinity is blasphemy.

God is omnipotent; the trinity of God- the father, the son and the holy spirit; There is only one God and that he has revealed himself as the Trinity. Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

Salvation

Salvation is a gift achieved through belief in Allah and good works, thus personal righteousness must outweigh personal sin

Salvation is a gift from the Lord and comes by grace alone through faith in Jesus Christ only.

Number of followers

1.65 billion

1.1–1.3 billion

Image Courtesy: znfrey.com, loyarburok.com

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Comments

Catholics do also believe that salvation comes from both faith and works. The idea that belief alone is sufficient is a Protestant concept and is incorrect.

Wrong fact- Jesus is not seen as a reincarnation of God and the original language is not Latin, but Aramaic, the origins are in Galilee not Rome.

Please change the wording on Idol for Christianity. We do not idolize anything/anyone but God. These objects we venerate, and if they are not blessed, they mean as much to us as you would a picture of someone you loved that has passed away. I came here looking for the differences between Christianity and Muslim & I thank you for all this hard work, but "Idols" is against Christianity & one of the most misunderstood things about our faith. Icons were used heavily because back in the day people could not read, as a matter of fact it was Christianity that started the education outside of nobility as well as hospitals following Jesus (he would preach to the outskirts of towns where people who were ill were thrown out like garbage).Thank you!

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