My question is multi-faceted, and has been eating away at me all day.
The first part has to do with the age of various religions and is really my main question. I have heard that some religions such as Hinduism supposedly originated before Judaism, so how do we reconcile this (if true) with the Biblical account of Genesis. I am no expert when it comes to the history of religions and have battled to find credible resources. Furthermore if some religions did emerge before Judaism’s formation does it hurt the creditworthiness of our faith? (As Judaism forms the roots of our Christian faith). I would think that Judaism would be the first religion, as God’s chosen people and from there onwards we have deviation from the truth not the other way around where we get a movement from falsehood to truth.
Secondly, and this question is contingent on the first, if Judaism isn’t the first religion, how would God deal with those people when it comes to their salvation. I think my real concern here is having the assurance that God will be just when it comes to eternal life, not having people perish without any real righteous foundation to send them to eternal torment.
@Higgs If we go back to the very beginning - Cain and Abel - we actually find two different religions. Abel worshiped God, but Cain and Cain’s descendants served themselves. The godly line of Seth preserved the worship of the true God even before there was a Jewish nation. Long before Abraham or Moses came on the scene - God was still present in the lives of Noah and his ancestors as well as his descendants.
So while Judaism officially began with Abraham, we can trace worship of the true God all the way back to Adam and Eve. Of course the people who lived on the earth worshiped idols and created false religions - that is part and parcel of what happens when men reject the true God. But the worship of the true God has always been present upon the earth.
I think it’s pretty neat that most cultures around the world contain both flood legends and legends about the fruit that gives life - I believe that those pagan myths are echoes of the true story that comes from Scripture and verify the Bible’s account.
You may find the following threads helpful as you think through these questions: