AHC: 3rd Testament Christianity

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: Before 1900' started by The Professor, Aug 11, 2017 at 10:24 AM.

  1. The Professor Pontif of the Guild

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    So, prior to the 1800s, generate a Christianity offshoot followed by an average sized country.

    EDIT: by offshoot I mean something that is clearly based in Christianity but differs by the inclusion of eg a new prophet
     
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2017 at 4:47 AM
  2. Intransigent Southerner Well-Known Member

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    The Arabs fail to conquer the Sasanians and overrun the entire ERE instead.

    Deprived of Persian influence, with all its subjects being various Christians, and the only imperial tradition known being Christian, Islam becomes construed as a unique branch of Christianity with the Qur'an acting as Third Testament.
     
  3. Indicus Raianus Indicorum

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    Create a Mormon-esque religion in the US slightly earlier, and then have those "Mormons" move to Mexico, establishing an independent country in the middle of the Mexican War of Independence.

    The notable difference in Islam is that Jesus is not the Son of God, so I don't see how it can be seen as a Christian denomination.
     
  4. RPW@Cy Well-Known Member

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    I think you need to define how heterodox something needs to be to count as an offshoot, otherwise something like the Church of England would qualify...

    That said your best bet is probably something like Vodou (the spelling "Voodoo" is apparently regarded as pejorative these days), a highly syncretised mixture of traditional African beliefs and Roman Catholicism (this is doubtless a horrible oversimplification) practised by up to 50% of the population of Haiti and which arguably meets the criterion even OTL.
     
  5. marcinL Well-Known Member

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    That and the lack of baptism. And while sects with strange opinions about Jesus's divinity existed and exist, the lack of baptism is a problem.
     
  6. metalinvader665 Well-Known Member

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    Is it plausible to have a Christian heresy gain a burst of popularity and develop into this? Or even a more Christian version of Islam, where Jesus is the Son of God, and *Muhammad is simply a great saint and creator of doctrine, like Peter or Paul? The Koran would be the Third Testament.
     
  7. power Well-Known Member

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    I can see the islam idea working. But it woukd only get inspiration or syncretism with islam. The "third" testament in this case will likely not be a direct copy of the Qur'an. So it would end up as either a heresy of islam and/or christianity, or a seperate abrahamic faith...which it is depends on who you ask...
     
  8. metalinvader665 Well-Known Member

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    It would be an alternative to Islam if it were an Arab faith, and Islam as we know it wouldn't exist.

    What I'm most interested in is the capability for a Christian heresy to evolve in this manner. Obviously Mormonism and the Book of Mormon could be considered like this, but a Late Antiquity POD is most interesting plus OP said pre-1800.
     
  9. The Professor Pontif of the Guild

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    Yeah I specifically said pre1800 to exclude "this is Mormons" responses.

    One idea could be a preReformation Luther/Calvin figure writing some commentaries and counterdoctrinal interpretations, gets martyred, and followers proclaim him a new prophet preparing the way of the 2nd Coming; a Book of Luthvin then gets added to their Bible.
     
  10. fi11222 My butterfly is a scorpion

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    It already exists:
    [​IMG]
     
  11. The Professor Pontif of the Guild

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    That's the Quran. I asked for something based in Christianity not just influenced by.
     
  12. Zelda Wizard of Odd

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    In a way Joseph Smith did this, but not really, I think he may have been willing to expand the bible except for one thing.

    Revelation 22:18, the quad Mormons have though... It's kinda like that.
     
  13. fi11222 My butterfly is a scorpion

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    Look at the subtitle: "The final testament". This is an unorthodox translation of the Quran by a dissident Muslim current ("submitters") who consider that there is continuity between "the previous scriptures" (the Bible) and the Quran.
     
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  14. The Professor Pontif of the Guild

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    And is currently rejected by theologians of Christianity and Islam due to Jesus's role as Son of God, Baptism, and other items, but do recognise each other as sister religions from Judaic tradition.
    Thus I am explicitly excluding it from this challenge. Please don't bring it up again.
     
  15. metalinvader665 Well-Known Member

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    If we have a "Third Testament" in some Christian religion, it won't have the Book of Revelation in it, and this is in large part because of Revelation 22:18, which is a pretty strong condemnation against adding things to the Bible. Revelation was historically questioned since before the New Testament canon was solidified, and questioned again by people like Martin Luther.

    Although any Christian sect which adopts a "Third Testament" will likely have alterations to the first and second Testaments as well, assuming they even have it to begin with. If Gnostics can be considered Christians, I'd expect a Gnostic group which compiles a Biblical canon to omit a huge part of the Old Testament, if not cut it out entirely. Other groups might recognise different apocrypha as canon. The odds of a Bible with three testaments being the same as a standard Bible with a bunch tacked on is unlikely, although if a Third Testament emerges from a Protestant sect, you might be able to get something like that (as the Mormons do with their creative interpretation of Revelation 22:18).
     
  16. The Professor Pontif of the Guild

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    Thanks, a close enough approximation to standard bible + extras will do for this.
    Might be worth looking at all the books that were rejected by the early councils too.