Final Religion Exam Study Questions
1) ABRAM, or later ABRAHAM, is the symbolic figure in the Hebrew Bible who
becomes the PATRIARCH of Judaism, Christianity and Islam. Who was
ABRAHAM and why was he so important in later Judaic, Christian and Islamic
Abram born in 1850 BCE believed by archaeologists
Abram means the Great Father already symbolic name. He is therefore a symbolic figure.
Abram later changed to Abraham
Patriarch of the 3 religions also known as the religion of Abraham. He is therefore the
Led the chosen people on a migration as described in the Genesis (1 book)
Born in UR, Mesopotamia (Iraq). Migrated with father, Terah, to Haran. There, received
prophetic call from God (Yhwh)
God instructs Abram to leave his country and fathers house to the land that will make of him
a great nation. So from Haran, went to the promise land.
Abraham with wife Sarah (Sarai) migrated to Canaan (Palestine Israel). Famine in Canaan
caused Hebrews to go to Egypt.
When Abram 75, was rich in livestock, silver and gold. Returned to Canaan.
Sarah could not have children. Had an Egyptian slave girl, Hagar, give birth to Ishmael.
Islam traces it lineage through Ishmael.
When Abram 99, God appeared to make covenant. Essence of contract do not stray from
the one god. Renamed to Abraham meaning ancestor of a multitude of nations the
Sign of contract male circumcision. Practised in Judaism and Islam. God makes Sarah, 89,
give birth to Isaac who he then makes covenant with. Ishmael is blessed and made a great
When Abraham 100, Isaac born and circumcised on the 8 day
Abrahams faith tested when told to kill Isaac. Took knife, but angel of the lord stop him, for
he now knew he feared god. In quran, it is Ishmael and a dream.
Abraham symbol of absolute faith. First monotheist prophet. Led people to promise land.
Patriarch of Judaism through Isaac. Patriarch of Christianity and Islam thru Ishmael.
2) *****What is the relationship of ABRAHAM to the later religious traditions of
Judaism, Christianity and Islam. 3) Describe the first encounter of MOSES with GOD (YHWH) at Mount Sinai, as it
appears in the HEBREW BIBLE. How does this story differ from MOSES encounter
with GOD (ALLAH) in the QURAN and what characteristics of the PROPHETIC
EXPERIENCE do both accounts share?
Mose Egyptian name to bear / to beget / drawn out named after the event from which he
was saved (lifted from the Nile). Hence Moses
Born 1300-1250 BCE historical context, time of Ramesis II
In Exodus (experience) 2 book of the Hebrew bible
Moses kills Egyptian for beating a Hebrew. Flees Egypt. Goes to Midian, SE of Sinai.
[tending sheep which leads him to Mount Sinai. Angel of the Lord appear om a flame of fire
out of a bush. Bush blazing, not consumed. (awe)
God calls out, Moses, Moses!
Moses says here I am
God says Come no closer! Remove your sandals, for the place on which you are standing is
Holy Ground (fear)
I am the god of your Fathers, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob the God of the
Patriarchs. *Jacob son of Isaac
afraid to look at God in fear of his face
Moses asks God what to say to the Israelites. After saying the God of your ancestors has sent
me, and they ask what is his name, what should I say?
God says I am who I am (yhwh Yahweh) I am has sent me to you
Name of god so sacred that the Jewish people do not say it.
Importance Moses questions Gods will or commandment. Suppose to act immediately!
In Quran: paraoah behaves arrogantly and divides people. Weakens sections by
slayin male children. Moses sent out a member of the pharohs family takes him in.
wife says he will prove to be a source of joy. When older, saw two men fighting, one
was his own, he called for help and moses kills the other. Flees.
With family, sees fire by Mt.Sinai. in tree, god calls out I am allah, Lord of the
worlds. Commanded to put down rod, it turns into a snake. Moses runs. Called back.
God do not be afraid for you are those who are secure (in faith)
God grants moses and aaron and followers signs to convince pharoh. Taken as
sorcery. Pharoh calls himself god! Arrogant and insolent. So him and his hosts were
seized and flug into the sea. Cursed and so on day of judgement, will suffer. Moses
and company crosses sea.
At mt Sinai, asks to see god. God says he cant, but look at mountain. If it says in
place, then you can. God explodes it. Moses faints and falls.
4) Describe in detail the second encounter of MOSES with GOD (YHWH) at Mount
Sinai after the EXODUS of the Hebrews from EGYPT. In Jewish tradition what is
the TORAH that was given to MOSES by God (YHVH)? Moses and followers wander for 40 years a whole generation
On third new moon after Israelites out of Egypt, ventured onto the wilderness of Sinai.
Camped by the mountain, Moses meets God
God tells Moses to tell the house of Jacob, and Israelites , that they have seen what God did
to the Egyptians and how God brought Moses to the mountain on eagles wings. If Moses
obeys and keeps covenant, he will be Gods most prized possession out of all the peoples.
On morning of third day: thunder, lightening, thick clouds, loud trumpet. (fear, awe)
Moses brings people to foot of mountain. Mountain covered in smoke with Gods presence
Mountain quakes, trumpet becomes louder. Mountain smoked. People backed up.
God speaks from heaven
Moses speaks, God replies in thunder. Told to come up the mountain. Only him
If others gaze at God, they perish. priests must consecrate themselves before approaching
God reveals will the Torah. Law. Moses writes periodically and finishes the Torah before
his death. Wrote the 10 commandments.
Torah is written from oral form. Five books revealed to Moses.
b. Adam Eve, genealogy of Humanity
c. Abraham thru Joseph
b. 10 Commandments
c. Other Laws
a. Priestly laws
b. Clean and unclean laws
a. Moses and the Exodus Generation
b. Moses and the New Generation
c. More laws, sacrifices
a. Reaffirmation of the covenant
b. Speeches by Moses
c. Death of Moses
5) According to Biblical Historians, which of the four GOSPELS was written first and
how does that GOSPEL begin? How did the other three GOSPELS begin and of what
importance are the GOSPEL beginnings to Christian theologians?
Gospel of Mark was first
Was written 40 years after the death of Jesus We know it was written in 70CE because Mark Chapter 13 describes the destruction of the
temple at Jerusalem.
Began with the baptism of Jesus by John the Baptist. In the Jordan river in the Galilee, in the
north. Mark is a symbolic figure who points to the coming of Jesus
John preaches that after him will come He (Jesus) who is mightier than him.
Although he has baptized him with water, He will baptise you with the Holy Spirit
When Jesus emerges out of the water, the heavens opened and the spirit descended upon him
like a dove and God says Thou art my beloved son, with thee I am well pleased.
We must assume that Jesus becomes divine at this moment. The other gospels contradict this
Gospel of Luke was second
Began with the birth of John the Baptist, then the birth of Jesus. in the days of King Herod
of Judea who died in 4BCE. Therefore, Jesus born around that time.
Says that Jesus began his mission when he was 30 years old and was baptised then. Talks a
lot about his childhood unlike Mark.
Gospel of John was third
Began with in the beginning was the word, and the word was God. Goes on to say that
Jesus Christ was there in the beginning with god and that all things, that is, the cosmos were
made through him.
Word- creative principle
John first theologian was of the Gospel writers. Symbol of Jesus is not that he became divine
at birth and adopted by God, but that he is symbolic of his creation out of nothing. Jesus is
fully God. Word is incarnated in Jesus Christ. Word became flesh, and so the son of the
father. this is the second aspect of the trinity.
John views Jesus as the sacrificial lam. The lamb of god takes away sins of the world, Jesus
is just that. This is what makes John a theologian.
Gospel of Matthew is fourth
Jesus divine at birth too. Genealogy of Jesus Christ from Abraham to King David to Joseph.
In Luke, it was the other way around. Before Joseph and Mary came together, Mary was with
child of the Holy Spirit. Angel tells them to name him Jesus.
When born in Bethlehem in Judea, wise men from the East came to ask where is he who has
been born the King of the Jews? implies lineage back to David, who was the King of the
Jews. People wanted messiah to come again to bring back the kingdom of David. Jews
thought Jesus would be that warrior.
Angel appears to Joseph in dream, Herod to search and kill Jesus. They flee Egypt, and
Herod orders death of children under 2.
Tries to link Jesus to Moses. Author most likely a Jew. .
New covenant is the new testament thru the life, death and resurrection of Jesus.
6) In MATTHEW 16, Jesus asks his disciples Who do men say that I am? Only
PETER knew the symbolic meaning of the title, CHRIST. What did CHRIST mean in
Jewish tradition and how has the Christian tradition interpreted the title, CHRIST?
When Jesus said men, he meant the Jewish community
His disciples answered