Difference between Catholics and Jews

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Catholics and Jews are sometimes confused by people because of their similarities, like the presence of the Old Testament in the Bible, the belief of God, and their similar origins - the Torah. Here, we discuss the difference between Catholics and Jews.

Catholics are a denomination under the religion of Christianity. Just like many denominations under this religion, they believe in the Holy Trinity as well as Jesus Christ. Perhaps one distinct difference Catholics have from Jews is the belief that Jesus is the son of God and is a messiah. The Catholic Church identifies itself as one established by Jesus. Many Catholics descended from Jews - these are people who believed in the teachings, grace, and reincarnation of Christ.

Meanwhile, Jews are followers of Judaism, which existed before Christianity. It is a remnant or a later version of the Hebrew faith. Most of the teachings of Judaism revolve around the Old Testament. Many Jews interpret the teachings of the Torah in a literal manner and also believe in Pharisaical tradition. They believe in one God and see Jesus Christ as a teacher rather than a messiah.

Catholics Jews
Definition A follower of the Catholic Church, which is a denomination of Christianity. A follower of Judaism.
Religion Catholicism; Christianity Judaism
Origin Judea Roman Empire, 1st century Jerusalem The Levant
Etymology From the Greek word “katholikos”, meaning universal From the Hebrew word “yĕhūḏāh”, meaning Judah
Places of worship Churches, basilicas, cathedrals, homes Synagogues, Temple of Jerusalem Western Wall
General practices Reading the bible, prayer, charity, holy communion, Church worship, and practice of the Sacraments 3 prayers a day (Shacarit, Mincha, Arvit) and another (Musaf) on Shabbat and holidays
Scriptures used The Holy Bible Torah, the Jewish Bible Tanakh
Clergy Nuns, brothers, priests, monks, bishops, ministers Rabbis, scribes, mohels, cantors
Belief of God There is One God in the form of the Holy Trinity - Father, Son and Holy Spirit There is One God, who is often referred to as HaShem or Adonai; belief that God is the one true creator and exists forever
Belief of Jesus Christ Jesus was resurrected and will have a second coming; he is the Savior, the Messiah and the Son of God Jesus is a valuable teacher born to ordinary parents; Jews deny his resurrection and second coming
Belief of life after death There is Eternity in Heaven or Hell Little focus on this matter, but many believe in a form of reincarnation with differing beliefs
Symbols The cross, ichthys, Mary and the baby Jesus Menorah and Star of David
View on religious symbols, portraits, etc. Icons are allowed, pictures and statues are venerated Forbidden in ancient times due to idolatry; now quality artwork is encouraged but should not be seen/treated as religious icons
View on saints Praying and veneration is encouraged Holy figures are called Tzaddics but prayers can only be directed to God
Tenets The Beatitudes and Ten Commandments The Law of Moses

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