What is the Holy Book? Is the Holy Book the Word of God? What does it mean to say 'as time grows older, the Holy Book gets younger? Does the Holy Book mention advances made in science and technology today? What was the Divine Wisdom behind the revelation of Holy Book stages over a period of 23 years? Holy Books of Hinduism
Christianity, like other religions, has adherents whose beliefs and biblical interpretations vary. However, this article's purpose is to describe those distinctives that set Christianity apart as a unique belief system. Christianity regards the Bible, a collection of canonical books in two parts (the Old Testament and the New Testament), as the authoritative word o f God. Christians believe the Bible was written by human authors under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. Some believe that divine inspiration makes our present Bibles "inerrant". Others claim inerrancy for the Bible in its original manuscripts, though none of those are extant. Still others maintain that only a particular translation is inerrant, such as the King James Version. Jews, Catholics, Orthodox and Protestants each define separate lists of Books of the Bible that each considers canonical. These variations are a reflection of the range of traditions and councils that have convened on the subject. Every version of the complete Bible always includes books of the Jewish scriptures, the Tanakh, and includes additional books and reorganizes them into two parts: the books of the Old Testament primarily sourced from the Tanakh (with some variations), and the 27 books of the New Testament containing books originally written primarily in Greek. The Roman Catholic and Orthodox canons include other books from the Septuagint which Roman Catholics call Deuterocanonical. Protestants consider these books to be apocryphal. Some versions of the Christian Bible have a separate Apocrypha section for the books not considered canonical by some Churches or by the groups publishing them.
The Book of Mormon is a volume of holy scripture comparable to the Bible. It is a record of God’s dealings with the ancient inhabitants of the Americas and contains, as does the Bible, the fulness of the everlasting gospel.
The book was written by many ancient prophets by the spirit of prophecy and revelation. Their words, written on gold plates, were quoted and abridged by a prophet-historian named Mormon. The record gives an account of two great civilizations. One came from Jerusalem in 600 B.C., and afterward separated into two nations, known as the Nephites and the Lamanites. The other came much earlier when the Lord confounded the tongues at the Tower of Babel. This group is known as the Jaredites. After thousands of years, all were destroyed except the Lamanites, and they are the principal ancestors of the American Indians.
The crowning event recorded in the Book of Mormon is the personal ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ among the Nephites soon after his resurrection. It puts forth the doctrines of the gospel, outlines the plan of salvation, and tells men what they must do to gain peace in this life and eternal salvation in the life to come.
After Mormon completed his writings, he delivered the account to his son Moroni, who added a few words of his own and hid up the plates in the hill Cumorah. On September 21, 1823, the same Moroni, then a glorified, resurrected being, appeared to the Prophet Joseph Smith and instructed him relative to the ancient record and its destined translation into the English language.
In due course the plates were delivered to Joseph Smith, who translated them by the gift and power of God. The record is now published in many languages as a new and additional witness that Jesus Christ is the Son of the living God and that all who will come unto him and obey the laws and ordinances of his gospel may be saved.
Concerning this record the Prophet Joseph Smith said: “I told the brethren that the Book of Mormon was the most correct of any book on earth, and the keystone of our religion, and a man would get nearer to God by abiding by its precepts, than by any other book.”
In addition to Joseph Smith, the Lord provided for eleven others to see the gold plates for themselves and to be special witnesses of the truth and divinity of the Book of Mormon. Their written testimonies are included herewith as “The Testimony of Three Witnesses” and “The Testimony of Eight Witnesses.”
We invite all men everywhere to read the Book of Mormon, to ponder in their hearts the message it contains, and then to ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ if the book is true. Those who pursue this course and ask in faith will gain a testimony of its truth and divinity by the power of the Holy Ghost. (See Moroni 10: 3-5.)
Those who gain this divine witness from the Holy Spirit will also come to know by the same power that Jesus Christ is the Savior of the world, that Joseph Smith is his revelator and prophet in these last days, and that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the Lord’s kingdom once again established on the earth, preparatory to the second coming of the Messiah.
The Literature regarded as central to the Vedic and Hindu literary tradition was originally predominantly composed in Sanskrit. Indeed, much of the morphology inherent in the learning of Sanskrit is inextricably linked to study of the Vedas and other early texts.
Vedic literature is divided by tradition into two categories: Shruti – that which is heard (traditionally understood as revelation) and Smriti – that which is remembered (stemming from human authors, not revelation). The Vedas constituting the former category are considered sacred texts or scripture by many followers of Hindu religion. The post-Vedic scriptures form the latter category: the various shastras and the itihaasas, or histories in epic Sanskrit verse. Holding an ambigu ous position between the Upanishads of the Vedas and the epics, the Bhagavad Gita is considered to be revered scripture by most Hindus today.
Islamic holy books are the texts which Muslims believe were dictated by God to various Islamic prophets throughout the history of mankind. All these books, in Muslim belief, promulgated the code and laws of Islam. Muslims believe the Qur'an, the final holy scripture, was sent because all the previous holy books had been either corrupted or lost. Nonetheless, Islam speaks of respecting all the previous scriptures in their original forms. Belief in all the revealed books is an article of faith in Islam and a Muslim must believe in all the scriptures to be a Muslim. The four books are the Tawrat, Zabur, Injil and Quran. The Torah was sent to Musa (Moses), the Zabur was sent to Dawood (David), the Injil was sent to Isa (Jesus) and the Qur'an was sent to Muhammad.
The importance of Judaism's sacred texts extends far beyond their religious significance. These ancient documents embody not only Judaism's religious precepts, but also the historical, cultural and social heritage of the Jewish people. In Israel, where attitudes towards tradition range from the ultra-orthodox to the secular, sacred texts carry a variety of meanings - from a spiritual, moral and practical guide to everyday life, to a historical and cultural wealth which is critically examined and studied.
The stories, ideas and philosophies of the sacred texts, encompassing millennia of Jewish study and thought, are evident in much of Israel's modern culture, which draws on the legacies of the past even as it gives voice to the issues and concerns of the present.
For Jews, the concept of "Torah" is much broader than the books themselves, the delimited concept of the Torah. "Torah" can refer to all of traditional Jewish learning, but "the Torah" usually refers to the Torah she'bi'ktav, the written Torah, also known as the Humash (the five volumes or Pentateuch, sometimes referred to as the Five Books of Moses). Readings from the Torah, which are divided into 54 weekly portions(parshiyot), have always been the centerpiece of the Sabbath morning service, and as such, its stories, laws, and poetry stand at the center of Jewish culture.
The Torah retells God's creation of the world, the selection and growth of the family of Abraham and Sarah in relationship to God in the land of Canaan, the exile and redemption from Egypt of that "family-become-nation" known as Israel, and their travels through the desert until they return to the land of Canaan. Along the way, Israel enters into a covenanted relationship with God, and God reveals many of the rules for governing a just society and for establishing appropriate worship
The Torah is Judaism’s most important text. It is composed of the Five Books of Moses and also contains the 613 commandments (mitzvot) and the Ten Commandments. The word “Torah” means “to teach.”
Hebrew is a Semitic language, akin to such diverse languages as Arabic and Maltese. It is written from right to left and so books are typically read from what we would consider the back.
Each week in synagogue, it is read (or, more accurately, chant, because it is sung) a passage from the Torah. This passage is referred to as a parshah. The first parshah, for example, is Parashat Bereishit, which covers from the beginning of Genesis to the story of Noah.
Atheism means denying God's existence, which of course involves rejecting His commandments, as well as religious reflection and seriousness, and believing in the possibility of total self-independence apart from God. As such beliefs negate the concept of sin, people imagine that they can live as they please. Therein lies in the corruption of people's hearts and minds. Atheism spreads because education is misused, young people are neglected, and schools actually defend and foster it.
Atheism first manifests itself as a lack of interest in the principles of faith. People with this attitude often claim that it is positive, for it represents a desire for the mind's independence and freedom of thought. As the demands of faith are strenuous, indifference turns toward what is easier. It seeks any pretext to excuse it from honest and serious reflection, and so falls easily into neglect, then heedlessness, atheism, and even contempt for religion.
Atheism is caused by a lack of knowledge and learning, an inability to synthesize one's inner and outer life, and is the result of an undernourished heart and soul. People cling to what they know, and resist what they do not know—or at least try to remain uninterested and unconcerned.
The word cult in current popular usage usually refers to a new religious movement or other group whose beliefs or practices are considered abnormal or bizarre. The word originally denoted a system of ritual practices. The word was first used in the early 17th century denoting homage paid to a divinity and derived from the French culte or Latin cultus, ‘worship’, from cult-, ‘inhabited, cultivated, worshipped,’ from the verb colere, 'care, cultivation'.
In the 1930s cults became the object of sociological study in the context of the study of religious behavior. They have been criticized by mainstream Christians for their unorthodox beliefs. In the 1970s the anticult movement arose, partly motivated by acts of violence and other crimes committed by members of some cults (notably the Manson Family and People's Temple). Some of the claims of the anticult movement have been disputed by other scholars, leading to further controversies.
Government reaction to cults has also led to controversy. Cults have also been featured in popular culture.
Gnosticism (from gnostikos, "learned", from Greek: γνῶσις gnōsis, knowledge) is a modern scholarly term for a set of religious beliefs and spiritual practices found among some of the early Christian groups called "gnostic" ("learned") by Irenaeus and other early Christian heresiologists. The term also has reference to parallels and possible pre-Christian influences of the Christian gnostics.
Gnosticism was primarily defined in Christian context, or as "the acute Hellenization of Christianity" per Adolf von Harnack (1885), until Moritz Friedländer (1898) advocated Hellenistic Jewish origins, and Wilhelm Bousset (1907) advocated Persian origins. Consequent discussions of Gnostic Christianity included pre-Christian religious beliefs and spiritual practices argued to be common to early Christianity, Hellenistic Judaism, Greco-Roman mystery religions, Zoroastrianism (especially Zurvanism), and Neoplatonism. The base of discussion of gnosticism changed radically with the discovery of the Nag Hammadi library, and led to revision of older assumptions, and a reorientation of modern scholarship following the 1966 conference on gnosticism in Messina.
Messianism is the belief in a messiah, a savior or redeemer. Many religions have a messiah concept, including the Jewish Messiah, the Christian Christ, the Muslim Mahdi and Isa (Islamic name for Christian Jesus), the Buddhist Maitreya, the Hindu Kalki and the Zoroastrian Saoshyant. The state of the world is seen as hopelessly flawed beyond normal human powers of correction, and divine intervention through a specially selected and supported human is seen as necessary
The term mythology can refer either to the study of myths, or to a body or collection of myths. As examples, comparative mythology is the study of connections between myths from different cultures, whereas Greek mythology is the body of myths from ancient Greece. In the field of folkloristics, a myth is defined as a sacred narrative explaining how the world and humankind came to be in their present form. Many scholars in other fields use the term "myth" in somewhat different ways. In a very broad sense, the word can refer to any story originating within traditions.
The New Age movement is a Western spiritual movement that developed in the second half of the 20th century. Its central precepts have been described as "drawing on both Eastern and Western spiritual and metaphysical traditions and infusing them with influences from self-help and motivational psychology, holistic health, parapsychology, consciousness research and quantum physics". It aims to create "a spirituality without borders or confining dogmas" that is inclusive and pluralistic. It holds to "a holistic worldview," emphasising that the Mind, Body and Spirit are interrelated and that there is a form of Monism and unity throughout the universe. It attempts to create "a worldview that includes both science and spirituality" and embraces a number of forms of mainstream science as well as other forms of science that are considered fringe.
Pantheism is the view that the Universe (or Nature) and God (or divinity) are identical. Pantheists thus do not believe in a personal, anthropomorphic or creator god. The word derives from the Greek (pan) meaning "all" and the Greek (theos) meaning "God". As such, Pantheism denotes the idea that "God" is best seen as a process of relating to the Universe. Although there are divergences within Pantheism, the central ideas found in almost all versions are the Cosmos as an all-encompassing unity and the sacredness of Nature.
Polytheism was the typical form of religion during the Bronze Age and Iron Age, up to the Axial Age and the gradual development of monotheism or pantheism, and atheism. It is well documented in historical religions of Classical Antiquity, especially Greek polytheism and Roman polytheism, and after the decline of classical polytheism in tribal religions such as Germanic polytheism or Slavic polytheism. It continues into the modern period in traditions such as Hinduism, Buddhism, Shintoism, Chinese folk religion, etc., and it has been revived in currents of Neopaganism in the post-Christian West.
Polytheism is a type of theism. Within theism, it contrasts with monotheism, the belief in a singular God. Polytheists do not always worship all the gods equally, but can be Henotheists, specializing in the worship of one particular deity. Other polytheists can be Kathenotheists, worshipping different deities at different times.
Satanism is a group of religions composed of a diverse number of ideological and philosophical beliefs and social phenomena. Their shared features include symbolic association with, admiration for the character of, and even veneration of Satan or similar rebellious, promethean, and liberating figures.
Spiritism is a loose corpus of religious faiths having in common the general belief in the survival of a spirit after death. In a stricter sense, it is a religion whose beliefs and practices are based on the works of Allan Kardec and others. Formed in France in the 19th century, it soon spread to other countries, but today the only country where it has a significant number of adherents is Brazil.
God has created no community of beings in the world without a purpose and left them without a guide or leader. It is inconceivable that God Almighty, Who has not left bees without a queen, ants without a leader, and birds and fish without a guide, has left humanity without Messengers to guide them to both spiritual and intellectual and material perfection.
Jesus of Nazareth (ˈdʒiːzəs/; Greek: Ἰησοῦς; 7–2 BC/BCE to 30–36 AD/CE), also referred to as Jesus Christ or simply Christ, is the central figure of Christianity, and is also regarded as an important prophet of God in Islam. Most modern historians agree that Jesus existed and was a Jewish teacher from Galilee in Roman Judaea, who was baptized by John the Baptist.
Christians traditionally believe that Jesus was born of a virgin, performed miracles, founded the Church, died sacrificially to achieve atonement, rose from the dead, and ascended into heaven, from which he will return.
In Islam, Jesus (in Arabic: عيسى in Islamic usage, commonly transliterated as Isa) is considered one of God's important prophets, a bringer of scripture, and the product of a virgin birth, but not the victim of crucifixion. Islam use the title "Messiah" for Jesus, but do not teach that he was God incarnate.