Difference between Islam and Christianity

Islam and Christianity are the two most popular religions that are practiced by a large number of people in this world. Christianity and Islam have both peacefully co-existed and also engaged in extended periods of warfare during the history of the world.

Christianity is the world’s largest religion with more than 2.1 billion followers, and Islam is the second largest religion with more than 1.5 billion followers all over the globe. Both these religions have similarities and preach similar beliefs but the difference between them lies in their core views.


Islam means submission and it was founded on the teachings of the prophet Mohamad who taught his followers to submit to the will of Allah and follow His given code of life. Islam is a monotheistic religious tradition that developed in the Middle East around 7th century AD. The followers of Islam are Muslims who live their lives according to the code of life as given by Islam.

Christianity is 2,000 years old and has its origin in the teachings of Jesus, reported to be born of a virgin mother, Mary which is the reason why Christians believe Jesus to be the son of God. Christians believe Christ is “the Son” of the Holy Trinity and walked the earth as the incarnate form of God (“the Father”). The followers of Christianity are known as Christians who live their lives as instructed by Jesus.

Islam vs Christianity

Islam vs Christianity
Relative distribution of Christianity (red) vs. Islam (green)

What is the difference between Islam and Christianity? It would not be wrong to say that Christianity and Islam share a historical and traditional connection, but they have stark theological differences which set them poles apart.

Another basic difference between Islam and Christianity lies in their fundamental views in regard to the nature, crucifixion, and resurrection of Jesus. Christians believe Jesus was crucified and died on the cross, but two days later was resurrected. They believe in the Trinity and also hold that Jesus is divine and out of the three distinct persons, one of them is God. On the other hand, Islam holds that Jesus did not die on the cross but ascended to the heaven by the will of God and he will return before the end of time.

Christianity and Islam have different scriptures, with Islam using the Quran and Christianity the Bible as its holy book. While the Bible talks about the life and works of Jesus, the Quran talks about the prophet Mohamad, numerous other messengers that God sent to this earth along with Jesus and his life. Some Muslims view the Christian gospels to be altered while some Christians believe the Quran to be a fabricated or made-up scripture.

Even though Christianity and Islam are both known as Abrahamic religions because of their common origin through Abraham, the story has been reported with certain basic difference in their holy books. The Muslims emphasise Ishmael being the older son of Abraham, but Christians place emphasis on Isaac as being the favourite son of Abraham.

Comparison Chart

Islam Christianity
Islam believes in the sovereignty of God and consider Jesus a human prophet and not divine Christianity believes in the Trinity, meaning that God has 3 forms (Father, Son, Holy Ghost/ Spirit)
Islam instructs its followers to believe God as the one and only creator of this world and universe and all mankind with no wife or son Christians believe Jesus to be the Son of God who is divine
The holy book of Islam is the Quran The holy book of Christians is the Bible
The Islamic place of worship is a mosque The Christian place of worship is a church, chapel, cathedral, basilica, home bible study or any personal dwelling that is the worshippers’ choice

While they share some similarities and connect on a few points, the difference between the two religions is apparent in their beliefs, the way they worship and their scripture.