What would Jesus' podcast look like?
Jesus Christ in dialogue
Two (fictitious) students, Laura and Enes, prepare a lecture by email on the subject of "Jesus in the religions of Christianity and Islam" for the seminar "Interreligious Dialogue". An exchange of the different ideas could look like this:
Subject: Jesus in the Koran
Hello Laura, I have started preparing for the presentation. Now I have a first overview: In the Koran Jesus (Muslims mention the formula "Peace be upon him" after his name, as is customary after mentioning the names of prophets) primarily under the following topics: his creation, his miraculous birth and his Message to the Children of Israel. In addition, there is a corrective representation of the crucifixion narrative and a clear rejection of ideas about an essential unity of God and Jesus and a father-son relationship between the two. The last point is probably also the one that is hardest to understand for many Muslims: How a unity of essence between God and man is possible and how one can imagine that Jesus is God's Son.
Many greetings, Enes
Subject: God's Son or God?
Hey Enes, in my research on Christianity, I have found the importance of remembering that all talk of God is to be understood metaphorically. In being begotten by the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary, Jesus proceeds as a Son from the Father. Christianity - like Judaism and Islam - has a God. Jesus Christ as Son and the Holy Spirit belong to God as Father. As a result, however, they are not three gods, but they are one being who turns to people in two forms: God worked in history through Jesus Christ and works universally through the Holy Spirit. This is how one speaks of the Trinity of God. According to this understanding, Jesus Christ, as the Son, is also eternal and true God. This also means that God became man through Jesus and communicated himself to people in him on earth.
Kind regards, Laura
Subject: Re: God's Son or God?
Hi, that's different in the Koran: Despite his miraculous creation in his mother's body, Jesus is not considered the Son of God. Rather, it is reminded that Adam (peace be upon him) also came into life without a father and even without a mother through direct creation. “Certainly, the parable of 'Isa is with Allah like the parable of Adam. He made him out of earth. Then He said to him: “Be!” And there he was. ”(Quran 3:59)
In addition, Jesus (Isa) is always mentioned in the Koran and the hadiths (collection of the statements of the Prophet Muhammad) with his surname Son of Mary (Ibnu Maryam). Many Koran commentators interpret this denomination of descent, which was unusual for the time, in two ways: Since the descent is usually traced back to the paternal line, the aim here is to express that Jesus had no father and that he was the son of a mother, but implicitly not the Son of God. In addition, the epithet (no other prophet is mentioned in the Koran with his denomination of origin) emphasizes the venerable connection between Jesus and a very special woman, namely Mary.
Subject: Re: Re: God's Son or God?
Hello Enes, In contrast, Jesus is defined entirely by God in Christianity, even if Mary is venerated nonetheless and above all in the Roman Catholic Church.
In the New Testament Jesus is given several titles of sovereignty that emphasize him and his special relationship with God. Jesus is referred to as the Son of God (Rom. 1: 3f.), As it was due in the Old Testament to a special person who was given a task by God. In the New Testament the title refers to the task of Jesus as Savior. It also expresses the close personal relationship between God and Jesus. His epithet Christ (Mk 8, 29), Greek for “the anointed”, goes back to the Aramaic title Messiah. With this, the early Christians took up the idea of the messianic savior promised to the Jewish people in the Old Testament. This would be a descendant of David. Jesus was also addressed as the son of David (Mk 10, 46-52) to express that the promise had now been fulfilled with him. Whether Jesus saw himself as the Messiah is open. He did not call himself that, but early Christians inferred it from his behavior and message. In addition, Jesus was also “Kyrios” (Rom 10: 9), which is Greek for “Lord”. Among the Jews, the title “Lord” was reserved for God. When the Christians spoke of Jesus as “Lord”, he was thus put on an equal footing with God.
Subject: Re: Re: Re: God's Son or God?
This is interesting, because Jesus is also referred to as the Messiah (al-Masih) in the Koran (Koran 3:45). This epithet is understood very differently: once as a reference to the anointing as a blessing (ie: the blessed); on the other hand, on Jesus' ability to heal people from their illnesses with his hands (mash, derivation from the same root word as al-Masih).
In the Koran, Jesus describes himself as the loving son of his mother and servant of God. As a servant of God, as in the Bible, Jesus received a task from God in the Koran. But the task is different: He is the messenger of a message from God to the people of Israel.
Subject: The new covenant through Jesus Christ
For Christians, Jesus Christ not only brings the message, He is it. Christians believe that He is the revealed Word of God. Through His work, His crucifixion and His resurrection, God makes a new covenant with people. During the last supper with his disciples, Jesus himself interprets his death as a surrender through which the covenant between God and his people is renewed and deepened (1 Cor 11: 23-25). The first covenant between God and the people of Israel is not canceled with this, but with the coming of Jesus Christ this covenant will be transferred to all of humanity, so that through him a new order of salvation will come into force. That is why the Easter events of Jesus are understood by Christians as a turning point for all of humanity. With this the new world, the kingdom of God, could already dawn in the middle of the old world. That's why we celebrate Easter.
Subject: The new covenant through Muhammad
In the Qur'anic narrative, Jesus was a messenger to the people of Israel. So he was a prophet. Only with the sending of the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him), which took place after Jesus' work, did God address all of humanity. According to the Islamic understanding of prophecy, God chooses one among people who is also recognizable as a human being through his humanity and through him allows His revelation to be proclaimed and through his human example a perfect, but still striving realization of this message in the world become reality. In this sense, Muslims are the followers of all prophets, including those of Jesus.
Subject: Crucifixion Death
I would like to come back to Easter because the death of Jesus on the cross is the central event in the Christian faith. Only in this way were we humans redeemed from all the sins of the world and thus also from original sin. It is precisely in the crucifixion that God's greatness is revealed to us, since he exposed himself to the suffering of human existence. It means that God became man and suffered for people themselves in order to reach people where they were. The point is that God's power and glory do not reveal themselves beyond man, but precisely in this humanity, which is shown in the suffering and death of Jesus. Only then was a new beginning possible in the relationship between God and man. With salvation, people have the promise that they are unconditionally accepted in God's forgiving love.
Subject: Re: Crucifixion Death
It is different in Islam. It is a concern of the origin of the Koran to emphasize that Jesus was not crucified and was instead exalted by God (Koran 4: 157). God did not allow Jesus to be killed, but only made the crucifixion appear to people that way and exalts Jesus to Him. According to some Koran commentators, it also fits that the word "Jesus" is late Aramaic and translated means "the saved".
Subject: Jesus' message for Muslims
I found out something else. Jesus' message in the Koran is the message of faith and confidence. It is also a reminder for Muslims to move from a materialistic way of life that is focused on this world to a more spiritual way of life that is related to the other world.
Subject: Jesus' message for Christians
From a Christian perspective, the message of Jesus Christ is more than that. This is how many stories in the New Testament describe life in the now. This is also followed by Jesus' commandment to love one's neighbor and enemy, which people in the world should obey. Through their faith, Christians are obliged to orient themselves to the example of Jesus Christ and to the instruction of God's word in order to participate in his message and to act against the suffering in the world. That is why Jesus changed not only the relationship between God and people, but also the relationship between people. Overall, the work of Jesus is thus oriented towards this world and the hereafter.
The interreligious dialogue via email actually continued and resulted in an exciting lecture.
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