Out of Christianity, there are various ideas about God. What are the differences between the Christian understanding of God and outside of it?
About many religions of the world, we must know that they don’t present the same god with different names, as some people mistakenly express the wrong view. These various gods come from different concepts and are totally inappropriate to the Christian understanding of God and the truths of biblical revelation.
The concepts of “God”, prevalent in various religions, even are in opposition to the Christian contemplation about God. Christianity teaches about Almighty, Good, Merciful, human-loving God, who is love, spirit, person, one deity with complex oneness, and Holy Trinity an example of which is the simultaneous existence and wholeness of the light and heat in the fire or in the sun.
Islam, which emerged after Christianity and on the basis of Christianity, teaches about one God – Allah, who is all-powerful, infinite, everywhere. But Islam denies the basic Christian belief in the Holy Trinity, the divinity of Jesus Christ and the image of Christ as a God presented in New Testament.
In Hinduism, the supreme being is Brahman manifested through numerous gods and goddesses. Jainism teaches about the existence of many gods. Japan’s ancient religion Shintoism accepts polytheism, the existence of ancient gods or spirits. Buddhism hasn’t any specific doctrine, explaining the concept of God.
What is the Christian understanding of God’s uniqueness? Is it expressed in the idea of Trinity?
According to Christian doctrine, we cannot imagine God as a simple oneness, but a complex unity. God is not primitive. Christian theology teaches about three Persons of one God: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit have one and the same nature, are coexistent and united in one Deity. There is a difference by this: the Father is the cause of Son’s birth and proceeding of the Holy Spirit. This case, however, does not imply attributes of inferiority or temporality.
In the canon of Divine Liturgy after the utterance of Christian Creed a curse is said to those who have the view of temporality, inequality, of being created or modifiable concerning Deity.
To make the idea of the Holy Trinity understandable, Church Fathers have given the example of the fire, which exists with light and heat. Light and heat can not be before or after a fire, and at the same time, the fire, by its nature, cannot exist without light and heat. In this way, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit are one Deity. God is a spirit (John 4:24), eternal (Ps. 89:2; Isaiah 40:28, Romans 14:25) omnipresent (Ps. 138:7-12; Acts 17:27), good (Ps. 24:7, Mark 10:17, Luke 18:19).