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Christian : Jesus, Jesus Christus,   Lord Jesus, Jerusalem, the Holy City  
Holy Bible, Heilige Bibel,        


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Part of the series on
History of Christianity
Jesus of Nazareth
The Apostles
Ecumenical councils
Great Schism
The Crusades
The Trinity of God
God the Father
Christ the Son
The Holy Spirit
Christian theology
Christian Church
Christian worship
Sermon on the Mount
The Ten Commandments
The Christian Bible
Old Testament
New Testament
Christian denominations
Orthodox Christianity

Christian movements



Enormous diversity of belief exists among Christians. Nevertheless, certain doctrines have come to characterize the mainstream of Christian theology.

The Trinity

Main article: Trinity

This is the belief that God is a single eternal being who exists as three distinct, eternal, and indivisible persons: Father, Son (Jesus), and Holy Spirit (or Holy Ghost).

The Messiah

Most Christians see Jesus Christ as the Messiah who was promised in the Old Testament Bible prophecy.

Jesus Christ as God

This is the belief that Jesus is both fully God (divine) and fully human: two natures in one person, as described in the Chalcedonian Creed. As a human, Jesus is believed to have possessed the qualities of mortality; he suffered the pains and temptations of mortal man. Significantly, he had the ability to die. Being divine, he possessed the ability to take up his own life again.

Crucifixion and Resurrection

This is the belief that Jesus died on the Cross, rose from the dead, and ascended into Heaven after appearing to his disciples, most notably to the Apostles.

Jesus Christ as Salvation

This is the belief that salvation from "sin and death" is available through the person and work of Jesus. Protestants, Catholics, and Orthodox Christians have arrived at several explanations as to exactly how this salvation occurs. (See soteriology.)

Most Christians interpret salvation to mean being able to enter heaven (and escape hell) after death, though some theologians have lamented this tendency. The question of "who is saved" has long been considered a dark mystery by many theologians, though most Protestants consider it a relatively simple issue of whether or not one has accepted Jesus as Lord and Savior.

The Second Coming

Main article: Second Coming

This is the belief in the "General Resurrection", in which all people who have ever lived will rise from the dead at the end of time, to be judged by Christ on his return.

The Afterlife

Christian views of the afterlife generally involve heaven and (somewhat less frequently) hell, with Catholicism adding an intermediate realm of purgatory. Except for purgatory (whose denizens will ultimately enter heaven, after "purification"), these realms are usually assumed to be eternal. There is, however, some debate on this point, for example among the Orthodox.

It is generally unclear how the afterlife fits together with the doctrine of the General Resurrection i.e. whether eternal life begins immediately after death, or at the end of time; and whether this afterlife will involve the resurrection of one's physical body (perhaps in a glorified spiritual form). Most Christians hold that one's consciousness, the soul, survives the death of the physical body, although the Jehovah's Witnesses, among others, reject this, saying that those who practiced good things will be resurrected to life and those who practiced vile things to a resurrection of judgement.



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