Abrahamic religion

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Preach to the choir
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Crux of the matter
Speak of the devil
An act of faith
Judaism is the original movie, Christianity is the sequel, Islam is the third movie of the trilogy that tries to go back to its roots, and Mormonism is the fan fiction rewrite retcon of the whole thing.

The Abrahamic religions are religions originating from the traditions of ancient Iron Age paganism (Yahwism); the major ones are Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, though there are others that are either offshoots of the main three (such as Bahá'í, Rastafari, and debatably Mormonism), early branches that are not directly related to the modern forms of any of the main three (such as MandaeismWikipedia or, arguably, the faith of the SamaritansWikipedia), as well as more syncreticWikipedia faiths (e.g. the religion of the Druze). Judaism and Islam are unambiguously monotheistic, though Christianity is sometimes seen as polytheistic due to the Trinity. All Abrahamic religions worship a single God, variously named El (ancient Semitic name), YHWH/Yahweh (Jewish tradition, sometimes used in Christianity), Jehovah (taboo deformation derived from early Christianity and rabbinical Judaism), Allah (Muslim, from the Arabic form of El), and numerous others. The term "Abrahamic" derives from the status of the Biblical patriarch Abraham as the mythical progenitor of all these related faiths. In modern times, Christianity and Islam are two of the largest and the two most widespread of the five major faiths of the world (the others being Hinduism, Buddhism, and "Chinese Traditional").[1]

The most fundamental document in the Abrahamic faiths is the Torah, the first five books of the Bible. Judaism adds the Tanakh (Old Testament); Christianity adds the New Testament (and, depending on the branch, some of the Apocrypha) to the Jewish canon; Islam replaces the entire thing with the Qur'an, which has some connection to the Old and New Testament.

The fundamental prophets of these three branches are, in chronological order, Moses, Jesus, and Mohammed.

King David is considered to be one of the prophets by Muslims, which Psalms the Zabur is revealed to him from Allah[2] and would fit somewhere between Moses and Jesus. However, he does not carry the status of "Prophet" in Judaism or Christianity.

Some Christians, while denying that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (Mormonism) is Christian, will nevertheless refer to them as the fourth Abrahamic religion. Unitarian Universalism, which has only existed in its present form since 1961 and is now overtly syncretic despite the Christian heritage of the denominations that formed it, might be considered a fifth — given viewpoints (mostly among Christians) may consider them part of, or wholly divorced from, Christianity, and individual members may or may not self-identify as Christian.

Taxonomy of the Abrahamic faiths[edit]

Timeline showing the lineage of major Abrahamic religions, with its founders

The following list is intended to be cladisticWikipedia in nature, showing the relationship between religious denominations in terms of which tradition spawned which. Significant breaks (i.e. the point where a modified belief is said to be a new religion) are marked with boldface entries. By necessity, this list is highly simplified; see Talk:Abrahamic religion for further details.


  1. http://www.adherents.com/Religions_By_Adherents.html - "Nonreligious" comes in third, but is not an organized religion in any sense.
  2. See the Wikipedia article on Zabur.