Of the world’s population of 7.8 billion, Christianity is the most widely practised religion in the world, with more than 2 billion followers. Next in popularity are 1.5 billion followers of Islam and 900 million Hindu. There are many beliefs that Christians have in common. There are however, not unsurprisingly, also many differences in the more than 21,000 Christian denominations.
While Christianity started with a small group of adherents, many historians regard the spread and adoption of Christianity throughout the world as one of the most successful spiritual missions in human history.
Basic Christians believes
The beliefs that (broadly) Christian denominations share.Explore
When did Christianity split into so many parts? Along what lines did it split?Explore
The Holy Bible contains the Word of God
The Holy Book of Christianity is the Bible. It is comprised of the Old Testament and the New Testament. Christians believe that the Old Testament is a shadow of Christ's coming. The New Testament records Christ's teachings, the establishment of the Church, and prophecies about the future.Explore
Christian worship can take many forms, but most denominations have some form of Communion.Explore
The clergy of the Christian church consists of ordained ministers.Explore
Christian Politics and attitudes to equality
The Christian faith can be used to justify the oppression of minorities.Explore
Christian Miscellaneous beliefs
The core of Christianity, no matter what particular sect or region of the world, dictates these fundamental beliefs. They run consistently throughout the teachings of early Christians and the Gospel incorporates them as essential aspects of the Christian faith.Explore
Catholics - points of difference
Catholicism is by far the largest branch of Christianity with an estimated 1.285 billion followers.
The history of the schism that led to the formation of the Catholic church.Explore
Catholic Holy books
The Catholic church's primary text is the Holy Bible, but it also places a huge amount of importance on the Catholic church's traditions.Explore
One of the primary practices of Catholics is the Liturgy of the Eucharist, in which bread and wine are physically transformed into the blood and body of Christ.Explore
The history of how the Catholic clergy has been a large part of Catholicism
The Catholic clergy has been a part of Catholicism since the religion was founded. Priests, cardinals, and the pope are well known symbols that have served the community and God for centuries. They have influenced the Christian world for centuries.Explore
Catholic Politics and attitudes to equality
The Catholic church is traditionally heavily patriarchal and anti-LGBT.Explore
Catholic Miscellaneous beliefs
Some of the differentiating beliefs of the Catholic church.Explore
Eastern Orthodox - points of difference
Eastern Orthodoxy are one of the oldest religions in the world. There are around 270 million people that follow the Orthodox tradition. It’s followers live mainly in the Balkans, the Middle East, and former Soviet countries.
What do Eastern Orthodox Christians believe?
Orthodox Christians believe that they practice the true and original Christian faith.Explore
Eastern Orthodox History/schism
Eastern Orthodoxy originally split from Catholicism in 1054.Explore
Eastern Orthodox Holy books
Orthodoxy focuses on the Bible, but additionally the canons of the Ecumenical Councils.Explore
Eastern Orthodox Worship
Orthodox Christian worship focuses on iconography, Holy Communion, and repeated prayer.Explore
Eastern Orthodox Clergy
Bishops in the Eastern Orthodox church are distinctive by their long beards.Explore
Eastern Orthodox Politics and attitudes to equality
Eastern Orthodoxy has very strict ideals, particularly when it comes to the sanctity of marriage.Explore
Eastern Orthodox Miscellaneous beliefs
Differentiating beliefs of the Eastern Orthodox church.Explore
Protestants - points of difference
There are approximately 1 billion Protestant adherents worldwide or about 37% of all Christians. A Protestant is an adherent of any Christian bodies that separated from the Church of Rome during the Reformation, or of any group descended from them.
Protestants split from the Catholic church in the 16th century.Explore
Protestant Holy books
Protestants place most of their belief in the Bible, without the reverence for church tradition that Catholicism or Orthodoxy have.Explore
Protestant worship varies between denomination, but centres on the Bible.Explore
Women are allowed in the Protestant clergy, and priests can marry.Explore
Politics and attitudes to equality
Protestant churches tend to be more liberal than others.Explore
Protestant Miscellaneous beliefs
Protestants do not believe in purgatory and believe Catholics over-idolise the Virgin Mary.Explore
Being Amish - points of difference
Amish are an American Protestant group with around 200,000 members.
What do the Amish believe?
The Amish, with a population of around 342,000, are a Christian denomination that subscribes to the teachings of Jacob Ammann. The Amish live simple lives, reflected in how they dress, prepare their meals, and refuse modern technology.Explore
The Amish church split from the Swiss Anabaptist church in 1693.Explore
Amish Holy books
The Holy Bible is the only religious text the Amish believe in.Explore
Worship takes place in different households, rather than a church.Explore
Amish ministers are not professional; they are chosen from within the community.Explore
Amish politics and attitudes to equality
The Amish have firm beliefs. They are pacifists who reject all forms of violence. They also believe in set gender roles. Men are the spiritual leaders at home and in the church. Abortion is prohibited under all circumstances and there are strict ideas on what constitutes sin (such as homosexuality).Explore
Amish Miscellaneous beliefs
The Amish practice shunning against members who have transgressed.Explore
Quakers - points of difference
There are around 210,000 Quakers in the world. Some do and some don’t consider themselves Christian.
What do Quakers believe?
Quakers are very different to other Christian denominations - some argue it is not Christianity at all.Explore
The Quakers were founded in the mid-17th century in Lancashire.Explore
Quakers Holy books
Unlike other denominations, Quakers do not believe any one book is the 'Word of God'.Explore
Quakers don't have set worship practices, but believe in incorporating the sacred into every part of their lives.Explore
Quakers do not believe a clergy is necessary to communicate with God.Explore
Quakers Politics and attitudes to equality
Quakers are heavily involved in social and political issues, having firm tolerant pacifist beliefs.Explore
Quakers Miscellaneous beliefs
Quakers do not participate in Christian holidays or have set views on the afterlife.Explore
Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints - points of difference
There are over 16 million Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter Day Saints – often called the Mormon church.
What do members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints believe?
The primary beliefs of the LDS church are rooted in Mormonism, and the teachings of its founder, Joseph Smith. With the vast majority of Mormons belonging to the church, they follow the core tenets of the religion but reject some of its fringe components, such as polygamy.Explore
The history of the LDS community and the split away from other denominations
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS Church) split from other denominations of Christianity in the early 1800s. The LDS was founded on the basis as a restoration of the early Christian church.Explore
LDS Holy books
The LDS have four main holy texts: the Christian Bible, The Book of Mormon, The Doctrine and Covenants and The Pearl of Great Price.Explore
The LDS place a large amount of importance on repentance and baptism.Explore
LDS Church Officers
Men in the LDS who meet certain standards are ordained to specific offices.Explore
LDS Politics and attitudes to equality
The LDS believes in the subservience of women to men within the traditional patriarchal system. Women are to be the primary caregivers, dress moderately, and submit to her husband's authority as he is the "head of the family."Explore
Miscellaneous beliefs that are not typical other Christian denominations
The LDS community has beliefs and traditions that are different from other Christian denominations. Their beliefs apply to spirituality, the afterlife, family, health, and even clothing.Explore
This page was last edited on Monday, 6 Apr 2020 at 19:56 UTC