-- Twelve --
Only a few parts of the Bible are used in prayer.
The entire Qur'an is used in prayer.

Only a few parts of the Bible are used in prayer.  The earliest forms of worship among the ancient Hebrews consisted of sacrifices and ritual purifications; this emphasis on purification and sacrifice continued until the total destruction by the Romans of the massive and spectacular Second Temple in Jerusalem in 70 AD.

The prophets, coming in succession, seemed to be evolving the Children of Israel toward a more heartfelt form of worship and away from empty ritual.  The development of synagogues and the eventual establishment of Rabbinic Judaism, after the destruction of the Temple, continued this evolution and increased the importance of the Scriptures in the worship services.  Nevertheless, only parts of the Hebrew Bible are actually used in worship services.

The Eucharist, or Communion based on the Last Supper is the focus of Christian worship, and only a few parts of the Bible Scripture are used in the service.  In the Catholic Church and in other Christian churches, the Bible text has only a small role in prayer.

The entire Qur'an is used in prayer.  The Qur'an is central to the Muslim worship service, called "salaah" which is performed five times a day by each Muslim, preferably in congregation.  Salaah consists primarily of reciting the Qur'an.

Each salaah consists of two, three or four segments.  The 7-verse first chapter of the Qur'an, "al-Faatihah," must be recited once in each segment for salaah to be valid.  After al-Faatihah, a short chapter of three or four verses, or several verses from a longer chapter, or long chapters may be recited.  Muslims occasionally recite one thirtieth or more of the Qur'an during salaah.  It is neither unusual nor difficult for Muslims to hear the entire Qur'an recited during salaah at least once a year, in the month of Ramadan; it takes approximately one hour each evening.

Every Muslim must memorize some of the Qur'an in order to perform salaah.  Many Muslims have memorized the entire Qur'an.

The Qur'an this one book, the literal word of Allah, preserved in its original form, in its original language is central to the worship of our Creator, the Creator of the heavens and the earth.

Previous Page

Selected Bibliography

Twelve Differences Home Page
Bible and Qur'an Home Page