As the birth of Jesus Christ approaches, I reflect on Christ’s wonderful revelation and the profound impact His message of love and fellowship has had on the world.
Many of my friends and family, while busy preparing for their Christmas festivities, ask me whether Baha’is believe in Christ.
And the answer is: Yes! Indeed we do. Baha’u’llah refers to Christ as the…
Lord of the visible and invisible.Gleanings 57
And in a letter to a Christian, Abdu’l-Baha explained that…
to be a Christian is to embody every excellence there is.Abdu’l-Baha, Selections From the Writings of Abdu’l-Baha, p.320
Although throughout history, individuals have often used religion for their own gain and used it as an instrument for segregation and war, one cannot downplay the beauty and profound impact the revelation of Christ has had on earth. Christ’s message of love continues to vibrate throughout the world, and one could argue that one of the proofs of His divine message is the fact that His revelation, although written down and compiled some 50 years after His passing, continues to transform the hearts of millions around the world – even today – some 2,000 years later.
Of Jesus Christ, Baha’u’llah wrote:
Know thou that when the Son of Man yielded up His breath to God, the whole creation wept with a great weeping. By sacrificing Himself, however, a fresh capacity was infused into all created things. Its evidences, as witnessed in all the peoples of the earth, are now manifest before thee. The deepest wisdom which the sages have uttered, the profoundest learning which any mind hath unfolded, the arts which the ablest hands have produced, the influence exerted by the most potent of rulers, are but manifestations of the quickening power released by His transcendent, His all-pervasive, and resplendent Spirit.
We testify that when He came into the world, He shed the splendor of His glory upon all created things. Through Him the leper recovered from the leprosy of perversity and ignorance. Through Him, the unchaste and wayward were healed. Through His power, born of Almighty God, the eyes of the blind were opened, and the soul of the sinner sanctified… We bear witness that through the power of the Word of God every leper was cleansed, every sickness was healed, every human infirmity was banished. He it is Who purified the world. Blessed is the man who, with a face beaming with light, hath turned towards Him.Baha’u’llah, Gleanings From the Writings of Baha’u’llah, p.86
Additionally, Shoghi Effendi re-confirms the Baha’i Faith’s belief in Christ by stating:
…the Faith of Baha’u’llah – if we would faithfully appraise it – can never, and in no aspect of its teachings, be at variance, much less conflict, with the purpose animating, or the authority invested in, the Faith of Jesus Christ…Shoghi Effendi, The World Order of Baha’u’llah, p.108
As to the position of Christianity, let it be stated without any hesitation or equivocation that its divine origin is unconditionally acknowledged, that the Sonship and Divinity of Jesus Christ are fearlessly asserted, that the divine inspiration of the Gospel is fully recognized… The Founder of the Christian Faith is designated by Baha’u’llah as the “Spirit of God,” is proclaimed as the One Who “appeared out of the breath of the Holy Ghost,” and is even extolled as the “Essence of the Spirit.” His mother is described as “that veiled and immortal, that most beauteous, countenance,” and the station of her Son eulogized as a “station which hath been exalted above the imaginings of all that dwell on earth”…Shoghi Effendi, The Promised Day is Come, p.109-110
So as you can see from the quotations above, although as Baha’is we don’t celebrate Christmas or the holy days of other religions as one of our own holy days, that’s not to say that we don’t believe in the station of Christ.
To be a Baha’i is to believe in the Lord Jesus Christ with absolute certainty, and so, on behalf of the Baha’i Blog team, I’d like to wish our Christian families and friends around the world a very merry Christmas!
For those of you reading this who are unfamiliar with the beliefs of the Baha’i Faith, Baha’is believe in what is known as ‘progressive revelation’, which basically means that God sends His messages to society at different times in history through the teachings of ‘Messengers of God’, who are divinely inspired to pass those teachings on to the societies they live in. Therefore, Baha’is recognize the divine station of Jesus, who brought a message from God appropriate to the age and the society in which He appeared. The same goes for Buddha, Krishna, Moses, Mohammed, The Bab, and Baha’u’llah.
You can find out more about progressive revelation here, and there’s more information about the Baha’i Faith and some Christian topics here.
Naysan is passionate about using the arts and media to explore the teachings of the Baha’i Faith. Back in 2011, Naysan started up the Baha’i Blog project, channeling his experiences in both media and technology companies to help create a hub for Baha’i-inspired content online.
Wow, thank you so much for this!!! I love learning about other Manifestations 😀
Nima Tareh (December 12, 2013 at 12:22 AM)
No problem Nima! I like learning about other religions too! Thanks for your support!
Naysan (December 12, 2013 at 12:58 AM)
I am so much appreciate your understanding of Baha’i true concept upon all other religious.In fact all are bounties of God’s Manifestation according to the changing situation of human capacities.Thanks for sharing.May God bless you.
khinmgzin (December 12, 2013 at 4:08 AM)
Awesome, bro! I came into the Baha’i Faith in 1979 – having grown up Catholic. I never turned my back on the Lord Jesus Christ, and still love Him with all my heart and all my soul. I believe that the prophecies that He, Himself said would come to pass, have indeed come to pass, and have been embodied in the person of Baha’u’llah. Thank you so much for posting this.
Kevin Hoban (December 12, 2013 at 4:41 AM)
Christmas is a time of sharing. A lot of Baha’is celebrate Christmas with non-Baha’i friends and relatives. Some participate in community celebrations, choirs, and charitable activities such as food and clothing drives. We don’t have time to celebrate every holy day of every religion in the world; if we did, we wouldn’t have time for work, school, or any of the other activities of daily life! But certainly there is time to share in the activities of those around us, and we love being invited to do so!
Candace Jacallen (December 12, 2013 at 9:09 AM)
Naysan’s essay is a useful starting point, from my point of view, to the sub-section of my website on Christianity. I’ve had a website for nearly two decades, and my website has sub-sections on each of the major historical religions as well as many subject-disciplines in the humanities, social sciences and sciences. The sub-section on Christianity is at: http://www.ronpriceepoch.com/Christianity.html ….FY possible I -Ron
RonPrice (December 12, 2013 at 11:27 PM)
So … you believe in the divinity of Christ and the truth of Him…
And then ALSO believe in others who contradict Him…
Helena (December 12, 2013 at 6:13 PM)
In the passages above I find no evidence of contradiction and nothing but understanding and love. It is important that when investigating religion we remember that the essence and truth of it is not in those that follow or claim to be of that religion but of it’s message and teachings. These can unfortunately be more difficult to find as often they are veiled by tradition, or dogma, or misunderstanding. In my own journey it wasn’t until I was able to get past my own misunderstandings or preconceptions that was I able to see there is love and unity at the core of religion and if we could just remember and embrace and teach that part we’d stop fighting over who calls each other what.
Kelmat (December 12, 2013 at 3:50 PM)
If you believe in Christ then you would know that he said others will come after me but do not be fooled. I respect every human and believe we are not here to judge but if someone believes in Christ and what he stand for, I can’t understand how they can believe in Abdu’l Baha
Mahi (December 12, 2014 at 5:09 AM)
Thank you for being so sincere in your comment and you raise a very good question.
Your question is far too deep to be explained here in the comments section of Baha’i Blog, but I’d like to suggest that you contact the Baha’is in your area, and that perhaps the following book Thief in the Night by William Sears or this website called Christianity Renewed may help as a starting point.
Baha’is do not believe in Abdu’l-Baha as the prophet, but rather it is Baha’u’llah that is the Prophet-founder of the Baha’i Faith and Abdu’l-Baha was His son and successor after He passed. You can find out more about the Baha’i Faith from this Baha’i Blog post where we list a number of introductory books about the Baha’i Faith: 10 Great Introductory Books on the Baha’i Faith
Thanks again Mahi and I hope these help.
Naysan (December 12, 2014 at 1:31 AM)
We believe that condescension towards other religions contradicts Him.
Sam Karvonen (December 12, 2013 at 8:13 PM)
As I point out in my survey of the history of Christianity and its teachings, Helena, at my website, I am a war-baby, that is, I was born during WW2. In the last 70 years, I have grown-up and lived through adulthood in the post-war epoch, an age, an era, of a 1000 Christianities. The authority to interpret the Gospels is found in the minds and hearts of individuals, as well as in centres like the Papacy, and in centres like the elected and appointed centres of the organizations of literally dozens of sects and denominations. There have been, are, and will be, inevitably, contradictions within this multitude of groups and millions of individuals.
The individual now, in the 21st century, has to work out how to deal with the contradictions and paradoxes, not only within his or her own religion, but also in their dealing with the vast multitude of religious traditions and their myriad issues. You might like to look at other sub-sections of my website where I deal with these traditions and these issues. I leave this, FYI, at: http://www.ronpriceepoch.com/RELIGION.html , http://www.ronpriceepoch.com/General.html , and http://www.ronpriceepoch.com/Debates.html
RonPrice (December 12, 2013 at 2:23 AM)
Its always interesting to me when a comment is made, like with Helena, lifting up the exclusivity of Jesus Christ seems to receive the most replies trying to steer them over to the broad path to destruction as Christ Himself said. Matt 7:13,14 “Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. 14 Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it. There is no other name whereby man might have eternal life, not my words but Christ’s himself. Where is the wiggle room so much sought out by so many? I find it naught myself.
Jesus said take up your cross and follow me. Truth is truth and does not change over time, does not evolve because the hearts of mankind today are puffed up with their supposed knowledge. Gnostism seems to prevail in the masses. Yes we were told 2000 years ago that many false christ’s would appear and if it were possible, to even lead aside the very elect.
The article says, “to be a Christian is to embody every excellence there is.2” No the Jesus I serve says differently. He says for us to die to self, repent and believe only in and upon Me and My death on the cross for your sins will effectually allow you to spend eternity with me because I have taken your punishment upon myself. No, No, the issue we deal with is not about happiness in this life, the real issue all of us will be King Jesus judging all of mankind of their sin and righteousness (or lack of). It makes no difference how anyone feels about this truth it does not change it and all are welcome to open the holy scriptures praying that the eyes of their understanding will be opened (and even that is a gift of God) and that God will grant to them life eternal life if they bow their knee and serve him. “For even Satan is exposed as being an angel of light” I exhort all who read this to beware to whom you place your faith and trust.
Kevin Bowman (December 12, 2013 at 7:24 PM)
Thank you for your warning, Kevin. Whilst misplaced, I know it is put forward with sincerity.
I for one have studied the Bible and the Qur’án, read the Gita and some parts of the Pali Canon and immersed myself in the vastness and depth of the Bahá’í Writings. Not just intellectually, but with an open heart ready to receive inspiration. After such an experience, and indeed reading these texts attentively is an experience, I can say with all my heart, my soul and my might this: That I will never believe in a “good” God that sends sincere billions to the Place, people who are able to see the Light not only in one Lamp, but in every Lamp that has demonstrated an authentic power to light up one’s soul. A loving God does not indulge in cruel theological hairsplitting no matter which way we read the Bible. He doesn’t put His sincere lover’s destiny at stake just because Wei Ji, Krishnamurti and Habibullah happen to call Him by another name than Jesus, or disagree on the exact theological definition of Jesus. Dogmatism and exclusivism are the real Satan, the modern scourge on mankind, and a source of endless war and violence. A loving and forbearing simply God doesn’t create a cosmos where those who see the same power and light shining from Buddha and Muhammad are fit for nothing but eternal damnation. A soul lit up by Jesus but simultaneously darkened by willful ignorance to the truth of other great Manifestations of His Light is a soul deserving a kind yet emphatic warning in return.
Whenever I pick up a Bahá’í prayer book or read Bahá’u’lláh’s words, they speak to me with power, majesty, beauty, depth, strength, love and wisdom. Naysan’s beautiful citation of Bahá’u’lláh honouring the Christ carry the same effect to the sincere reader. If our scriptures that speak to us as much as the most inspiring verses of the Bible and the Qur’án be denied as God’s word, or worse yet be deemed as the enticing call of “Satan”, then I would in all honesty have to deny the divine inspiration of the Psalms and the Sermon of the Mount as well.
Which I don’t think would be happening anytime soon. But consider us warned.
Sam Karvonen (December 12, 2013 at 8:50 PM)
Good day! I could have sworn I’ve been to this site before but
after browsing through some of the post I realized
it’s new to me. Nonetheless, I’m definitely glad I found it
and I’ll be book-marking and checking back frequently!
cyber (January 1, 2014 at 5:21 PM)
Baha’u’llah also states: “My body longeth for the cross, and Mine head awaiteth the thrust of the spear, in the path of the All-Merciful,……”
Summons of the Lord of Hosts; p. 60, verse 114.
Matthew Taylor (December 12, 2015 at 2:12 AM)
Wow! Thanks for sharing this Matthew!
Naysan (December 12, 2015 at 3:24 AM)
For the information on various religions,they are very educative.Iam from Kenya in Africa
James Ochieng (January 1, 2016 at 11:06 AM)
No problem James! Glad you found the article useful and thanks for your support and encouragement! 🙂
Naysan (January 1, 2016 at 8:50 PM)
I was raised a Pentecostal Christian and after a huge season of abandonment by my church and of hardship, I find it hard to now call myself Christian. I have described my religious position of being more about unconditional love than religious dogma.
My partner directed my attention to the Baha’i faith some time ago and I have very recently started to study it for myself. Though a deeper part of my soul is wary (wary of the ‘false doctrines’ I was taught to fear as a child), I want to know more. I feel spiritually connected to a faith community for the first time in a long time.
Thankyou for sharing this article. I find it comforting to know that my relationship with Jesus can stay strong.
Naomi Houldcroft (December 12, 2016 at 10:49 PM)
Thank you for taking the time to comment. We are deeply touched that this article has brought you comfort and we truly hope that you find other content on Baha’i Blog uplifting and informative.
Sonjel Vreeland (December 12, 2016 at 12:01 AM)
Beautiful, trank you yery so much my frieds
Margrit hurni (December 12, 2016 at 7:37 PM)
I too came from a Christian background — it really helps to understand what Baha’u’llah described as the dual station of the Manifestations. Their earthly personality vs. their divine spiritual station — that which emulates from God and is God’s voice to and among us. Hence, the distinction between Jesus of Nazareth, and the station of Christhood. The latter is the pure light, that appears through all the Manifestations. Christ is but one of the names or titles we know it by.
Mark Heinz (December 12, 2016 at 11:50 PM)
I love the Christmas story. I was brought up to love it and it is still in my heart this Christmas. As a Baha’i I can read the books of Baha’u’llah and Abdu’l-Baha and even the Koran that tells even more about Mary. So have a happy Christmas everybody.
Patricia Murday (December 12, 2016 at 2:01 AM)
Thank you Bahai Blog for enlighting readers about Christ and Christianity. This is very important for all Bahais to know and love all the past messengers of God. Without their life of love and sacrifice we would not have recognised love and understood our Lord Bahaullah
Ira Williams (March 3, 2018 at 10:01 AM)
very good, glory to God for this content, I think you’re doing a great job
Significado de Glória Deus (October 10, 2018 at 4:00 PM)
I’m always so excited about the research in the scriptures. What I like very much are the very old found scrolls. These speak a very different language of Jesus. Again and again I study the very old Gospels, as I read at the moment (message from Akka) and the heel number is indicated at the bottom of the pages. So reading the Bible is a lot of fun and you get along much better. Christmas has not been for me for many years
Margrit Rita Hurni (December 12, 2018 at 6:09 PM)
I love the Bahai Faith and all of the writings of Baha’u’llah have inspired me to pray every day to our Creator. I ALSO RESPECT WOMEN MORE BECAUSE OF THE BAHAI WRITINGS. I DONOT SEE WOMEN AS SEX OBJECTS BUT A SPIRITUAL BEINGS.
Robert Berry (April 4, 2020 at 12:20 AM)