Basic Comparisons Between Christianity and Buddhism

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Basic Comparisons Between Christianity and Buddhism

A basic comparison between Resurrection and Reincarnation is as follows:



Happens only one time

Occurs many times, over and over

Into the same body

Into a different body

Into an immortal, glorified body

Into a mortal body

A perfect state

An imperfect state

The ultimate and final state

An intermediate state

A basic comparison between Heaven and Nirvana is as follows:



Eternal soul

No soul

Live forever with God

Disappear into emptiness, extinction

Ultimate desires are fulfilled

Desires and ego disappear

Eternal glorified body

No body, nothingness

A comparison between Jesus Christ and Buddha:

Jesus Christ

The Buddha

Claimed to be God

Belief in God was not edifying

Made many prophecies

Made no prophecies

Performed many miracles

Performed no miracles

Crucified and rose on the third day

Died and was cremated

Is the Way, the Truth and the Life

Points to a false way

Jesus said, “Follow Me”

Buddha said, “Follow the dharma”

Jesus said, “I am the light of the world”

Buddha said, “Be lamps unto yourselves”

A comparison between Christianity and Eastern Religion (Buddhism):


Eastern Religion

Final Goal

Heaven (God)

Nothingness (void)


Worship of God

Merge with emptiness


Faith in Christ

Human endeavor

Sphere of Thought

Through reason

Beyond reason


By God’s grace

By human effort




Immediate State

Concentration on God

Relaxation, emptiness

A comparison between Theravada Buddhism and Christianity:

Theravada Buddhism


Buddha claimed no special relationship with God, was non-theistic

Jesus did claim a special relationship with God (John 3:16; 6:44; 10:30; 14:6, 9)

Buddha said he pointed to the way

Jesus claimed to be the way (John 14:6)

Buddha said to eliminate suffering and pain was to eliminate desire

Jesus said that the solution was to have right desires (Matthew 5:6)

A comparison between Mahayana Buddhism and Christianity:

Mahayana Buddhism


There were and are many bodhisattvas.

There is and has only been one Son of God, Jesus Christ (John 3:16; 19:7).

Motivation for the bodhisattvas was compassion for the world. Their compassion comes from themselves since the “emptiness” of nirvana has no feelings, only extinction.

Jesus is the unique demonstration of the love of God for the world (John 3:16; Romans 5:8; 1 John 4:10).

The physical world is an illusion to be escaped.

The Bible teaches that God created the universe and that it was declared good (John 1:3; Genesis 1:31).

To overcome their sin (i.e., attachment to the self, ignorance, and desire, etc.) one has to endure the process of going through numerous lifetimes because of karmic energy.

The Bible teaches that Jesus was sinless from the very beginning and that he did not have to attain sinlessness (Matthew 27:4; Luke 23:41; 2 Corinthians 5:21; Hebrews 4:15).

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