Abrahamic faiths should focus on shared beliefs

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Ancient stories from Jewish scriptures — the Old Testament — tell us that a man named Abraham received an order from God circa 2000 BC to move from the Euphrates region to Canaan where he gave birth to a son by his wife’s servant Haran, an Egyptian. The son was named Ishmael, but was later banished with his mother at Sarah’s insistence.

Ishmael’s descendants became what are now Arabs. Sara had a son named Isaac. His descendants became known as Jews.

About 2000 years after Abraham, a man named Jesus was born. Although the Jews had long expected a messiah, this man, who claimed to be the Messiah, did not fulfill the expectations of Jews as a Savior because he was not saving them from oppressors, but claimed to be saving people — including Gentiles — for an invisible “Kingdom of God.”

In the seventh century, an Arab named Mohammad claimed to receive a revelation from God that became a written scripture known as the Qu’ran, or Koran.

All three of these religious groups worshiped the creator God. Yahweh, the word God gave as his name to Jews, was considered too holy to speak and was rarely spoken. Lord was used frequently.

Martin Luther, in translating “ Yahweh” into German, called it “Jehovah.” “Allah” is Arabic for “God.”

The Quran parallels much Old Testament scripture and even cites the virgin birth of Jesus. We are all supposedly worshiping the same Creator God, so why have we, throughout history, killed each other in His name?

Carol Bullard