In the end-times , according to the Christian tradition, Jesus will come back and defeat the Antichrist Smith and Green In Islamic eschatology , there also is an Antichrist figure that is depicted in the Hadith as a one-eyed monster from the East who rules the earth for a period of time before Jesus comes to vanquish him Hinnells Anti-Cult Movement : As new religious groups grew in popularity, in part due to the counterculture of the s, conservative opposition emerged in the form of the anti-cult movement.
Not only did anti-cult advocates fear unorthodox religious beliefs and practices, but parents of converts and ex-members would often accuse new religious groups of "brainwashing" converts. Anti-literal Religion : A simple rejection of literalist religious statements Hunt Antinomianism : 1 The belief that certain religious allegiances exempt one from following secular law.
The famous "Antinomian Controversy" took place in the s, where Anne Hutchinson was brought to trial in Massachusetts for claiming to follow her direct revelation of the Holy Spirit instead of Scripture alone. She was banished from the colony in Reid et al.
Anti-Semitism : Unreasoning hostility toward and discrimination against the Jews. It can range from a formal doctrine and from mild antipathy to active efforts to kill the Jews. German writer Wilhelm Marr coined the term in to distinguish between secular hatred for the Jews as a people and hatred toward the Jewish religion , although the modern usage of the word denotes hatred for the Jews and Judaism in all forms Smith and Green Apocalypse : Catastrophic end-times battle between good and evil, in which good will triumph over evil. The Greek term refers to "hidden things.
Apocrypha : A collection of books or chapters of books not included in the Hebrew Bible , but present in various Christian versions of the Old Testament , mostly in the Catholic and Orthodox traditions. These traditions see the Apocrypha as authoritative, whereas Protestantism does not. Protestant Bibles either exclude the Apocrypha or create a separate section for it found in-between the Old and New Testament. Traditions that include this collection of terms prefer the term "deuterocanonical" books, not the Apocrypha.
This collection of books is not to be confused with the pseudepigrapha or the Christian Apocrypha , which are not regarded as authoritative by any major branch of Christianity Smith and Green Apologetics : The argumentation or defense on behalf of a certain religious faith. It is usually directed toward those outside the faith community, but the audience is usually those within the faith community Reid et al.
Famous apologists include Orestes Brownson and Francis Schaeffer. Apologist : One who engages in apologetics see Apologetics. Apostasy : Departing or falling away from a religious faith. In Christianity , it is the complete renunciation of the faith through either words or actions Reid et al.
Apostle : It refers to both the mission and representational authority of someone sent on a mission by a superior. In Christianity , "apostle" refers to the authoritative mission conferred to Christ on his disciples, with special emphasis on the Twelve Apostles and other specific people, to continue his mission on earth after his resurrection-ascension Reid et al. Apostles' Creed : Short statement of Christian beliefs, attributed to Jesus' disciples, but officially written long after their deaths Prothero Archbishop : The bishop of an Archdiocese.
The archbishop's power extends over an ecclesiastical province, not just a diocese. Catholic Churches , Eastern Orthodox Churches , and Anglican Churches maintain these hierarchal positions, although the jurisdiction, positional rank and specific role of the archbishop differs by tradition Reid et al.
Archdiocese : A large diocese overseen by the Archbishop. Since the fourth century CE, neighboring dioceses have been grouped into provinces, and the most important province has been designated as the archdiocese, while the others are called "suffragan dioceses.
Arhat : One who has attained the final stage of enlightenment in Theravada Buddhism. Over time, a distinction arose between arhats and bodhisattvas , and some Mahayanists came to malign arhats as a selfish and inferior enterprise, lacking in the compassion of the bodhisattva. There has been some debate as to whether only monks and nuns or laypeople can be arhats, and whether arhats still exist today Smith and Green Armageddon : A term referring to the battle between god and evil in the last days.
The term itself only appears once in the Bible in Revelation When many Methodist missionaries fled back to England during the American Revolution, he stayed behind and continued spreading Methodism. For more information on Francis Asbury, click here.
Asceticism : The complete renunciation of physical pleasures and other bodily desires in order to foster spiritual development. This practice is common in many religious traditions, including Buddhism , Catholicism , Eastern Orthodoxy and classical Hinduism Smith and Green Ash Wednesday : The first day of the Lent in the Western calendar, where individuals spread ashes on their forehead as a sign of penitence or mortality Smith and Green Ashkenazi : Jews originating from central and eastern Europe.
This group adopted Yiddish , a language based on medieval German.
As the Pentecostal movement began to flourish in the early 20th century, several diverse regional constituencies of the Reformed tradition desired to combine their efforts into one movement. Click here for more information on the founding of the Assemblies of God. Today they have a little under three million adherents Smith and Green Astral Projection : The experience of one's soul traveling outside the physical body into unknown realms of the universe. The belief in astral projection is found in many occult systems Smith and Green Astrology : Belief and practice of determining the influence of stars Smith and Green Atman : The Hindu concept that the soul resides in the heart, and is the source of life energy and spiritual awareness.
In Hindu thought, the soul transmigrates after death Esposito et al. Atonement : A term in both Judaism and Christianity referring to the forgiveness of sins. For Christians , atonement is found through the death of Jesus Christ on the cross. For Jews , atonement is found on the holiday Yom Kippur Day of Atonement , where practitioners ask God to forgive them of the sin they committed in the past year Prothero Attendance at Religious Services, Measure of : This survey item measures how frequently respondents attend places of worship.
It is debatable how much measurement error is present in self-reported attendance, as people tend to over-estimate their participation see Smith Attribution of Intentionality : Perhaps the most widely influential theory currently in the cognitive science approach to religion , it holds that faith in supernatural beings is a cognitive error that naturally springs from the way the human brain evolved.
Authoritarian Religion : A type of individual religion where the main virtue is obedience and its cardinal sin is disobedience Fromm Authoritarianism : The tendency to follow a strong leader or rigid social conventions. Avalokiteshvara : The most popular and celestial bodhisattva in Buddhism , especially Mahayana Buddhism. He is the bodhissattva of compassion. In China, Avalokiteshvara is known as Guanyin, and is female Esposito et al. Ayatollah : The highest rank of Shi'ite Muslim clerics.
The term literally means "sign of God. It was a defining event for early Pentecostalism and functioned as the catalyst to the growth of American Pentecostalism. Some question the assumptions behind the aging effect given how religious activity tends to increase with age even among those who do not believe in the afterlife Ulbrich and Wallace , but the assumptions underlying religious substitution between time and money are more widely accepted see Religious Substitution Theory.
The Baha'i faith is now worldwide and teaches the unity of God, the truth of his prophets , and continuation of revelation in every age.
It has no priesthood, believing in spiritual equality between men and women Parrinder Baptism : The rite of applying water to a person, usually marking his or her entrance into the Christian church. It appears to have derived from John the Baptist in the first century CE, although some scholars believe that the act was inspired by the ritual ablution of the Jewish Essenes. Churches and denominations are divided on whether baptism literally or symbolically washes away sin Smith and Green Baptist : Protestants that originated from 17th century English Puritanism.
The term "Baptist" came from their insistence that baptism should be reserved for those old enough to comprehend and confess a personal faith in Jesus. Modern Baptist churches teach that only believers should be voluntarily baptized by immersion Reid et al. For more on the Baptist family, click here. To interactively explore the history of Baptists in America, click here. Bar Mitzvah : This Jewish ceremony, usually performed when a boy is 13, marks his passage into adulthood.
The ceremony includes a reading from the Torah or the Prophets, and is followed by an elaborate party for friends and family Smith and Green Bat Mitzvah : A Jewish ceremony, usually performed when a girl is 12, which marks her transition into adulthood. The ceremony includes a reading from the Torah or the Prophets , and is followed by an elaborate party for friends and family. The Bat Mitzvah is a fairly new rite of passage in modern times, and functions as a way to give the girl more of a role in Jewish public life Hinnells Belief in "End Times," Measures of : Survey items measuring views toward certain religious predictions about the end of the world, such as Armageddon and the Rapture.
Examples of these items are found in the U. Examples of these measures are found in the General Social Survey , U.
Belief in God, Measure of : This survey item assesses whether a respondent believes in God. Belief in Hell, Measure of : This survey item assesses whether a respondent believes in hell or purgatory. Belief in Jesus, Measure of : This survey item assesses what respondents believe about the divinity or lack thereof regarding Jesus. Belief, Religious : On its most basic level, religious belief refers to views toward the supernatural.
One of the most common measures for religious belief is whether respondents believe in God. A new strain of research is focusing not just on if individuals believe in God, but specifically what they believe God to be like, often referred to as a person's image of God. Bhagavad Gita : The most popular scripture in contemporary Hinduism.
The Old Testament is comprised of thirty-nine books, further divisions of the twenty-four books in the Hebrew Bible. The New Testament contains twenty-seven books: the four Gospels of Jesus' life, the Acts of the Apostles, twenty-one letters, and the Book of Revelation.
It is important to note that Bibles in the Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox churches contain more books, including the apocrypha Smith and Green The Hebrew Bible is comprised of twenty-four books that are further divided into the Law , the Prophets, and the Writings Smith and Green Biblical Inerrancy : The belief that the Bible is without error, in terms of theology , ethics, history, geography, and science.
This is common in Christian fundamentalism , as opposed to evangelicals who typically have a less strict view that the Bible, and instead simply believe that the Bible is the inspired word of God Prothero Biblical Literalism : The extent to which individuals believe that the Bible or other sacred scriptures should be interpreted literally. Social surveys that are interested in religion often ask a question pertaining to biblical literalism, though the question wording and response options can vary.
Bishop : A senior member of the clergy who is in charge of a diocese or association of congregations or parishes Smith and Green Black Muslims : Members of the Nation of Islam. See Nation of Islam for more. Black Protestantism : Also known as the Black Church, Black Protestantism is a unique religious tradition that has theological and structural similarities to white evangelical denominations , but also emphasizes social justice and community activism.
Black Protestants tend to be liberal on economic issues, but conservative on social issues. Historically, seven major denominations compose this religious tradition, including the African Methodist Episcopal Church , the Church of God in Christ , and the Progressive National Baptist Convention. For more information, click here.