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Abrahamic ReligionsOn the Uses and Abuses of History$
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Aaron W. Hughes

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199934645

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199934645.001.0001

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My Abraham Is Better Than Yours

My Abraham Is Better Than Yours

(p.34) 2 My Abraham Is Better Than Yours
Abrahamic Religions

Aaron W. Hughes

Oxford University Press

This chapter begins with the fact that for much of the past two millennia Abraham has been primarily invoked for reasons of supersessionism as opposed to ecumenicism. Its scope is the use of the term “Abrahamic” from Pauline literature until roughly the beginning of the twentieth century. Although Paul never employed the term “Abrahamic,” he certainly spoke of the “covenant of Abraham” or of “Abraham’s offspring” to denote spiritual fulfillment in Jesus. Following this, the chapter examines the role of Abraham, now Ibrahim, in the Quran where again the implication is that it is Islam—and not Judaism or Christianity—that is the spiritual heir of Abraham’s message. The remainder of the chapter explores the invocation of Abraham in medieval polemical writing and in eighteenth- and nineteenth-century Christian supersessionist writings.

Keywords:   supersessionism, Paul, New Testament, Quran, Muhammad, John of Damascus, orientalism, Abd al-Jabbar, William Muir

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