Mission Issues

Thinking and re-thinking missionary issues

Third rule for dialogue: Accepting the best in other religions

I must admit that this “rule” is a bit more difficult (at least for myself). We tend to focus on the negative side of other religions, mostly because we try and win an argument when we speak to people believing differently than us. And then obviously we try and focus on the positive side of Christianity.

The question which immediately arises is whether we are true to Christ if we find anything positive in another religion. Max Warren writes: “We may be sure that He (God) will not contradict himself. We may be sure that nothing that we may discover will put a veil of covering over the face of Jesus so that the glory of God there revealed will be obscured.”
Obviously there is a lot of positive things to find in many religions. Absolute devotion immediately comes to mind when thinking of religions such as Islam and Buddhism. To deny these positive aspects will in no way advance the dialogue process.
But Warren does not stop at this point. By admitting and discussing the positive aspects of other religions, we are enabled to honestly put the differences on the table. He writes: “… the new and, I believe, the truer method of encounter … will not whittle away real differences and produce some agreed confession of Faith based on the lowest common multiple. Far from that, this approach … is calculated to show what are the genuine differences and just how important the may be”
The purpose of dialogue is therefore not to form some kind of syncretism. However, listening to the other person earns us the right to also explain what we believe about Jesus Christ as Saviour. And with time, we may also be able to expose the untruths this person believes.


Tuesday, May 15, 2007 - Posted by | Dialogue, Theology

1 Comment »

  1. […]      Third Rule:  Accepting the Best in Other Religions:      Click Here […]

    Pingback by 7 Rules of Dialoguing – MMM — Munson Mission Musings | Thursday, July 21, 2016 | Reply

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