Monotheism and World Religions
Far from having evolved through the centuries of Israel's history,
monotheism is an inspired insight revealed by God to his people. The
God of the Bible, the Creator of all that exists, stands outside
the universe and is not a part of it. Only three modern religions
share this viewpoint, and all of them are based on the revealed
religion of ancient Israel.
Certain other modern religions, such as Zoroastrianism and Sikhism,
teach forms of monotheism that are derived from former dualistic or
polytheistic systems. Unlike the three religions based on the Bible,
they suggest that God is a part of the universe and not separate from
it. Only the OT religion and its derivatives proclaim one God who is
transcendent by nature and immanent only by condescension and grace
(see Isa. 57:15).
- (1) Judaism's synagogue services always begin with Deut. 6:4, a
creedal statement known as the Shema: "Hear, O Israel: The Lord
our God, the Lord is one" (emphatically approved by Jesus
in Mark 12:28 - 29).
- (2) Christianity's greatest apostle defined monotheism in its most
classic form in 1 Tim. 2:5: "There is one God."
- (3) Islam (Mohammedanism) claims millions of followers who recite
this prayer as they prostrate themselves toward Mecca five times a
day: "There is no god but God."
(Elwell Evangelical Dictionary)
The individual articles presented here were generally first published
in the early 1980s. This subject presentation was first placed
on the Internet in May 1997.
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