Comparative Religion

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Module Information

Name of ClassComparative Religion
Credit Hours3 Hours
Class DescriptionThis course will look at the origins, development and beliefs of some of the major world religions. The main focus of this course will be  a study of Christianity, looking at the authorship of the New Testament, a study of the historical Jesus, and the development of Christian beliefs and teachings in the first few centuries. The remaining of the course will briefly look at Judaism, Hinduism and Buddhism.  Finally the course will give a quick overview of the most common arguments against Atheism.
Instructor NameSh Imtiaz Damiel
Required Text Jesus, Interrupted: Revealing the Hidden Contradictions in the Bible (And Why We Don’t Know About Them) by Prof. Bart Ehrman

 

Supplementary Texts:   

 

  • How to Discover the Real Jesus by I. Damiel
  • Which attempted solution to the Synoptic Problem best solves the problem? By I. Damiel
  • A Summary of the Rules and Principles derived by the Jesus Seminar Scholars By I. Damiel
  • Judaism: A Summary
  • Hinduism: A Summary
  • Buddhism: A Summary
  • Response to Atheism

Objectives

 

A.

Indentify and analyze the main elements of the historical development of some of the major religions of the world.
B.Know the major points about the beliefs, worship, and scripture of the world religions.
C.The student should be able to compare and contrast the Islamic Faith to other religions, and thereby acquire a perspective on the Islamic view in the context of world religions.
D.The student should understand a variety of religious views, and engage in knowledgeable academic dialogue with persons of different religious traditions.

E.

The students should be familiar with the main arguments against Atheism.

 

Topics Covered

Review of Literature in the field both in Arabic and English.

Linguistic and technical definitions of the terms Religion and Deen and the differences held by the scholars.

 

Introduction to Christianity.

What Christian’s Believe: A summary of the classic Christian faith concerning God as creator, Jesus as Son of God and Savior, and the Holy Spirit.

The New Testament: An Overview

Synoptic Problem: Discussion on arguments presented by New Testament scholars for Markan Priority and the sources for the other synoptic gospels

The Historical Jesus

The Earliest Gospels:

Contradictions in the Gospels

The Apostle Paul

Early Christianities: A look at the Jewish Christian Ebionites, the Marcionites and the Gnostics

Noncanonical Gospels: An examination of two early and important Gospels that did not get canonized

The Doctrine of the Trinity

Catholic, Orthodox and Protestant Christianity

Judaism

Hinduism

Buddhism

Atheism

Conclusion: A summary of the world Religions