Jesus of Nazareth, also referred to as Jesus Christ or simply Christ, is the central figure of Christianity and is also regarded as an important prophet of God in Islam. Most Christian denominations venerate him as God the Son incarnated and believe that he rose from the dead after being crucified. The principal sources of information regarding Jesus are the Bible’s four canonical gospels, which most biblical scholars find useful for reconstructing Jesus’ life and teachings. Scholars have correlated the New Testament accounts with non-Christian historical records to arrive at an estimated chronology for the major episodes in the life of Jesus.
Most critical historians agree that Jesus was a Galilean Jewish rabbi who was regarded as a teacher and healer in Judaea, that he was baptized by John the Baptist, and that he was crucified in Jerusalem on the orders of the Roman Prefect, Pontius Pilate, on the charge of sedition against the Roman Empire. Critical Biblical scholars and historians have offered competing descriptions of Jesus as a self-described Messiah, as the leader of an apocalyptic movement, as an itinerant sage, as a charismatic healer, and as the founder of an independent religious movement. Most contemporary scholars of the historical Jesus consider him to have been an independent, charismatic founder of a Jewish restoration movement, anticipating a future apocalypse. Other prominent scholars, however, contend that Jesus’ “Kingdom of God” meant radical personal and social transformation instead of a future apocalypse.
Christians traditionally believe that Jesus was born of a virgin, performed miracles, founded the Church, died sacrificially to achieve atonement, rose from the dead, and ascended into heaven, from which he will return. The majority of Christians worship Jesus as the incarnation of God the Son, and the Second Person of the Holy Trinity. A few Christian groups, however, reject Trinitarianism, wholly or partly, believing it to be non-scriptural. Most Christian scholars today present Jesus as the awaited Messiah promised in the Old Testament and as God, arguing that he fulfilled many Messianic prophecies of the Old Testament.
Judaism rejects the belief that Jesus was the awaited Messiah, arguing that he did not fulfill the Messianic prophecies in the Tanakh. In Islam, Jesus (in Arabic: عيسى in Islamic usage, commonly transliterated as Isa) is considered one of God’s important prophets, a bringer of scripture, and the product of a virgin birth, but not the victim of crucifixion. Islam and the Bahá’í Faith use the title “Messiah” for Jesus, but do not teach that he was God incarnate.