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Story of Abraham and the Story of His Life

Essay by   •  April 28, 2011  •  Essay  •  1,430 Words (6 Pages)  •  1,336 Views

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The story of Abraham and the story of his life and his descendants are important in the religions of Christianity, Judaism, and Islam. Although the story of Abraham is important to all three of these religions, his story means different things to each and is not always understood. The different perspectives of this story has caused and continues to cause much conflict in the world. But, if more Christians, Jews, and Muslims understood the story of Abraham, would the Western World be more peaceful today? Can this crossover biblical hero help heal the world?

Christians, Jews, and Muslims all believe and agree that Abraham is the founding father of monotheism. In both Judaism and Christianity, the story of Abraham is more than just the story of one man. Abraham becomes the father of the Jewish nation as he passes ten tests to confirm his belief in God and God's covenant with him. Christianity, Judaism, and Islam all teach that Abraham enters into a covenant with God in which an agreement is made and both sides make commitments.

God tells Abraham to leave his father's house and to also leave his homeland. God tells Abraham to go to the land that God promised him and his descendants. Abraham does this, and God makes a promise to bless Abraham and his descendants. God promises this blessing and tells Abraham that they will inherit a great nation. Asking Abraham to leave his father's house is the first test of the covenant. The most significant demand that God makes on Abraham is that he and his descendants commit to the belief in only one God. This is the foundation for

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Christianity, Judaism, and Islam.

The story continues with Abraham and his wife Sarah traveling through Egypt, on their way to the Promise Land. Since Sarah was barren and not able to conceive a child with Abraham, she tells him to sleep with their Egyptian slave-girl, Hagar. Sarah does this to fulfill the covenant between her husband and God. Ishmael is the son born of Hagar and Abraham and is Abraham's first born son. But, thirteen years later, Sarah also gives birth to a son named Isaac. Isaac is the second born son of Abraham. After the birth of Isaac, Sarah, forces Abraham to cast both Hagar and Ishmael away and sends them south to Saudi Arabia. All Muslims follow the line of Ishmael, while Jews and Christians follow Isaac.

Islam teaches that Abraham was one of the great prophets who received special revelations from God. Judaism and Christianity teach that the covenant with God was passed on through the genetic line of Isaac. Islam teaches that the covenant relationship was between God and Abraham and therefore passed to both his sons, Isaac and Ishmael. In contrast to the Jewish and Christian interpretations, Muslims believe that God equally favored Hagar and Sarah. Muslims believe that Ishmael was the son that God asked Abraham to sacrifice not

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