Wednesday 10 February 2016

The Norelli Test

Nick Norelli, a Pentecostal associate pastor in New Jersey who also describes himself as a layman, has an opinion on the question as to whether Christians and Muslims are talking about the same god in their separate discourses.

Norelli thinks it's an easy answer.

Do Muslims worship the Trinity? (No)
Do Muslims acknowledge Jesus as the Son of God? (No)
Does that entail a denial of the Father? (Yes)

And there you have it. Case closed.

"So I repeat, Muslims and Christians do not worship the same God. It’s really not a difficult question to answer."

Incisive, huh?

But what if we change the first two questions ever so slightly.

Do Jews worship the Trinity (No)
Do Jews acknowledge Jesus as the Son of God (No)

From there you have to follow the logic with question three.

I don't know about you, but I'm not prepared to give an 'amen' to that. Quite the contrary.

Maybe not such a simple question after all.


  1. These are all monotheistic religions. Some I've heard newscasters say that we are all worshipping the same god, they just use different names for Him. But, just because the Gods we worship have one trait in common, doesn't mean that it is the same God. When I completed basic training in the Air Force, a year after leaving the WCG, I saw my daughter for the first time in several months. My wife said that whenever she saw someone in a blue Air Force uniform, she would reach out to him. Well, just because we all wear the same uniform, doesn't mean that we are the same person. The personalities, traits, etc. of Allah and Yahweh are quite different.

  2. As I understand it, God is the creator of the universe. There can only be one Creator, thus anyone who claims to be worshiping the Creator is, by definition, worshiping the same God. To claim otherwise is either to take a detour into polytheism, or to claim that the universe was the result of a divine committee.

    My personal take is that the Creator is ineffable - that is, anything you say about the Creator is going to be wrong to some degree, and you have no way of telling what or how much. Christians, Jews and Muslims are simply wrong in different ways.

  3. If one believes Jesus was the Son of God then, yes, the Jews do reject the Holy One of Israel (the Father). Logic: If Jesus was the Son of God, then He knew what He was talking about. Now read Luke 10:16.

  4. Being the son of God is nothing all that special in Judaism.

  5. "The personalities, traits, etc. of Allah and Yahweh are quite different."

    I don't know as much about Allah, but I know enough about Yahweh to say His "personalities[yes, He does seem schizo at times] , traits, etc" do seem to be of the anthropomorphic type, including some of the worst of human tendencies: Quick to anger, using mass slaughter to make a point, jealous, misogynist, playing favorites, wrathful, vengeful, demanding to be worshiped "or else", etc.

    BTW, I am in no way saying that Yahweh's "10 Commandments" (or His precursors' very similar rules) have not had a profound impact on the maturing of civilization. That's a different subject.

    1. But then, some think the kudos should go to Hammurabi.