" Relgious leaders worried about loss of power and income ("Biography of Mohammed," 2005). This is an interesting parallel to Jesus' life, because Jesus also worried the religious leaders of his time for similar reasons (Wikipedia, 2000). Mohammed and Abu Talib fled Mecca, and his uncle hid him in a fortified castle away from the city.
Within ten to fifteen years (accounts vary), Mohammed moved to the city of Medina, where he and his teachings were welcomed ("Biography of Mohammed," 2005). He rapidly became the city's leader, becoming the judge, ruler, and law-giver for the city. He aligned himself with the two most powerful tribes, and led a ware against the Meccans in the name of Allah. Mohammed's army was victorious, and he gradually became accepted in Mecca as well. Six years after his victory, he led his first pilgrimage to Mecca, and Islamic missionaries began carrying the new religion to other countrys including Abyssinia, Egypt, and several other Arabic provinces ("Biography of Mohammed," 2005).
Some years after his victory over the army of Mecca he led 40,000 Muslims there on a pilgrimage. While there he climbed Mount Arafat and instructed his followers in specific rituals and ways to practice their religion properly. He gave them many laws to follow, including the requirements to protect those who were poor or invalided, or women, and to refrain from the practice of usury ("Biography of Mohammed," 2005).
Shortly after the end of this pilgrimage Mohammed became ill, and he died in June of 632 ("Biography of Mohammed," 2005).
DIFFERENCES BETWEEN the TWO MEN
Both men spent time in solitary contemplation, and both preached the belief in one God. Both instructed their followers in how to live a pious life. However, one dramatic difference between the two men involves divinity. Mohammed is not an object of worship in Islam, and he is not believed to be the Son of God. He is regarded as a prophet, and the most important prophet, but not as a deity. By comparison, the great majority of Christians believe that Jesus is part of the triune God that is a cornerstone of the faith: God made up of three - the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost. Because of this, Jesus is worshipped while Mohammed is not.
The religions of Christianity and Islam have one major trait in common. Both believe (although there are exceptions within Christianity) that it is their duty to spread the word about their religion and to attempt to convert others. Each religion believes that it is the one true religion and that it offers the pathway to salvation for its followers. This is particularly notable when reading the Gospels from the New Testament of the Holy Bible. Theologians not that when Matthew, Mark, Luke and John wrote their gospels, the goal was to persuade others to embrace Christianity (Goodacre, no date given).
However, how converts achieve salvation varies in each religion. In the Christian faith, salvation is acquired either by believing that Jesus suffered and died to wash away their sins, or by coupling that belief with good deeds. In Islam, no such sacrifice has been made, since the religion does not include a belief that Jesus was the Son of God and sent for that purpose, as is taught in Christianity. In Islam, following the rules of Allah as revealed by Mohammed, the prophet, is the only path to salvation (Goodacre, no date given).
In Christianity, the beliefs are spread by individuals who witness to others. This can be done within a person's church as they testify, either to convert newcomers or to support the beliefs of others, or done by witnessing to friends and acquaintances, or by traveling to other places with the goal of converting non-Christians to Christianity. The process is somewhat more complex in Islam, because the holy book of Islam, the Qu'ran, entwines religious law and civil law. Because of this, Muslims also attempt to establish theocracies, or countries where the Muslim religion is the state religion, with state laws reflecting Islamic law (Goodacre, no date given).
Biography of Mohammed," in Simply Biographies. 2005. Accessed via the Internet 7/3/05. http://www.sacklunch.net/biography/M/Mohammed.html
Goodacre, Mark, University of Birmingham. No date given. "Brief Biography of Jesus." BBC Radio. Accessed via the Internet 7/3/05. http://www.bbc.co.uk/religion/religions/christianity/features/thegoodbook/jesus/biog.shtml