Heathen vs. Infidel - What's the difference?

Wikipedia

  • Infidel

    Infidel (literally "unfaithful") is a term used in certain religions for those accused of unbelief in the central tenets of their own religion, for members of another religion, or for the irreligious.Infidel is an ecclesiastical term in Christianity around which the Church developed a body of theology that deals with the concept of infidelity, which makes a clear differentiation between those who were baptized and followed the teachings of the Church versus those who are outside the faith. The term infidel was used by Christians to describe those perceived as the enemies of Christianity. After the ancient world the concept of otherness, an exclusionary notion of the outside by societies with more or less coherent cultural boundaries, became associated with the development of the monotheistic and prophetic religions of Judaism, Christianity and Islam (cf. pagan).In modern literature, the term infidel includes in its scope atheists, polytheists, animists, heathens and pagans.A willingness to identify other religious people as infidels corresponds to preference for orthodoxy over pluralism.

Wiktionary

  • Heathen (adjective)

    Not adhering to Christian religion; pagan.

  • Heathen (adjective)

    Uncultured; uncivilized; savage, philistine.

  • Heathen (adjective)

    alternative case form of Heathen|nodot=1pertaining or adhering to the Germanic neo-pagan faith Heathenry.

  • Heathen (noun)

    A person who does not follow a Christian religion; a pagan.

  • Heathen (noun)

    An uncultured or uncivilized person, philistine.

  • Heathen (noun)

    alternative case form of Heathen|nodot=1an adherent of the Germanic neo-pagan faith of Heathenry.

  • Infidel (noun)

    One who does not believe in a certain religion.

  • Infidel (noun)

    One who does not believe in a certain principle.

  • Infidel (noun)

    One with no religious beliefs.

Oxford Dictionary

  • Heathen (noun)

    a person who does not belong to a widely held religion (especially one who is not a Christian, Jew, or Muslim) as regarded by those who do

    "a chance of salvation for the heathen"

    "my brother and I were raised, as my grandma puts it, as heathens"

  • Heathen (noun)

    a follower of a polytheistic religion; a pagan.

  • Heathen (noun)

    a person regarded as lacking culture or moral principles

    "eat your chips, you little heathen!"

  • Heathen (adjective)

    relating to heathens

    "heathen practices"

  • Infidel (noun)

    a person who has no religion or whose religion is not that of the majority

    "a crusade against infidels and heretics"

  • Infidel (adjective)

    adhering to a religion other than that of the majority

    "the infidel foe"

Webster Dictionary

  • Heathen (noun)

    An individual of the pagan or unbelieving nations, or those which worship idols and do not acknowledge the true God; a pagan; an idolater.

  • Heathen (noun)

    An irreligious person.

  • Heathen (adjective)

    Gentile; pagan; as, a heathen author.

  • Heathen (adjective)

    Barbarous; unenlightened; heathenish.

  • Heathen (adjective)

    Irreligious; scoffing.

  • Infidel (adjective)

    Not holding the faith; - applied by Christians to one who does not believe in the inspiration of the Scriptures, and the supernatural origin of Christianity; used by Mohammedans to refer to those who do not believe in Islam.

  • Infidel (noun)

    One who does not believe in the prevailing religious faith; a heathen; a freethinker; - used especially by Christians and Mohammedans.

Princeton's WordNet

  • Heathen (noun)

    a person who does not acknowledge your God

  • Heathen (adjective)

    not acknowledging the God of Christianity and Judaism and Islam

  • Infidel (noun)

    a person who does not acknowledge your God

Illustrations

Infidel

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