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It depends on how the person asking the question is defining "tolerance". For the most part, tolerance is a myth. The person with the "coexist" bumper sticker on their car is intolerant of my beliefs. They want me to adopt their belief system. All of us have a worldview. We all carry basic, fundamental beliefs about God, the world, our role in life, and a final destiny. These core beliefs are mutually exclusive between religions (and non religions). Meaning, they are not compatible with each other. All people of differing beliefs will disagree over the core, basic beliefs. As a Christian, we should love everyone. The Gospel is the Truth, and the Gospel is intolerant. Jesus is the Way, the Truth, and the Life - nobody comes to the Father but through Him! We should lovingly hold to that Truth and lovingly desire that all people come to that same knowledge. So we should be tolerant in the sense that we love everyone, do not demean, insult, belittle, or aim to be hurtful of what anyone believes. Sinners are doing exactly what they should be - sinning. They are deceived by the enemy, and the only proper response from us is love, patience, prayer, and a steadfast lifestyle that can serve as an example of the Truth of the Gospel. We should not be afraid to speak the Truth, and to hold to the foundation of Scripture.
Christians WILL be tolerant (not should) because their Savior was and is tolerant. "In fact, God is patient, because he wants everyone to turn from sin and no one to be lost. (II Peter 3:9) Any of us who profess to know Jesus Christ personally by faith in him have in-bred distinctions: 1- We are no longer of this dark world. "I am the light that has come into the world. No one who has faith in me will stay in the dark." (John 12:46) 2-We understand religion and religious people because we were one for so long before we met Jesus. "Did not God show that the wisdom of this world is foolish? God was wise and decided not to let the people of this world use their wisdom (religion) to learn about him." (I Corinthians 1:20-21) 3-We understand the world's hatred. "If you belonged to the world, its people would love you. But you don't belong to the world." (John 15:19) 4-We know the truth from a direct source. "I will send you the Spirit who comes from the Father and shows what is true. The Spirit will help you and tell you about me." (John 15:26) 5-We are Christ Ambassadors who go and tell--not go and condemn. "Then you will also tell others about me..." (John 15:27a) It is still show and tell time for the Christian. Perhaps more than ever, the Christian must not only show tolerance, but deep compassion as well. If you and I were trapped in a dark cave with many other people-- You and I spoke up and said, "Hey, everybody--we see some light!" Then these people ridiculed us and laughed at us, even as we responded to what we thought was light--We walked to our freedom. Now we have a choice. We can hate them for rejecting us and the truth about light or we can go back in and try again. Never once were we asked to CONVINCE THEM. Never once were we asked to CLUB THEM Never once were we asked to CARRY THEM We--you and I--were chosen and commanded to LOVE THEM. (John 15:16) "You did not choose me. I chose you and sent you out to produce fruit, the kind of fruit that will last. Then my Father will give you whatever you ask for in my name. So I command you to love each other." Now then--there's no SHOULD and SHAME in any of this. We leave our homes each morning as vessels of love. We cannot NOT love any more than the sun cannot rise or the river cannot flow to its destination. We are not Ambassadors of Baptist, Catholic, Mormon, Jew, slave or free. We don't ask them to, "Come join my church". We point people to Him--period. (John 3:5-19) Don't attempt to TAKE UP for him. He is a big boy and doesn't need us as a prop or defender. Those who beat others over the head with the bible with hopes of a conversion have merely re-affirmed what too many of the world already believe and think about Christians: "judgemental, self-righteous snobs." What if they did "quit" that horrible, sin we laser in on? Did that make them a Christian? No, they just became another religious person who can get to God on their own--through self effort. No Jesus needed. Now we have yet another religious zealot who thinks of him/herself as being superior to all others. Let the fighting begin again. Just STAND UP for him. If any changes of habit and behavior are needed, only Jesus is qualified here. If any forgiveness is required, Only He is the high priest who can hear and forgive. Tell them what I tell, "I am a sorry excuse for a man, a sinful creature who found the love of God to be transforming. I weep to know that He loved and loves me, even though a sinful man. If God will love me, He surely will love you." (Romans 4:4) Old George Duffield Jr. knew something about all this. "Stand up, stand up for Jesus, stand in His strength alone. The arm of flesh will fail you, you dare not trust your own. Put on the Gospel armor, each piece put on with prayer. Where duty calls, or danger, be never wanting there." Glenn W. Harrell 9-19-2014
All nations form but one community. This is so because all stem from the one stock which God created to populate the entire earth, and also because all share a common destiny, namely God. His providence, evident goodness, and saving designs extend to all until the day when God's people are gathered together in the holy city. The Catholic Church recognizes in other religions that search, among shadows and images, for the God who is unknown yet near since he gives life and breath and all things and wants all men to be saved. Thus, the Church considers all goodness and truth found in these religions as a preparation for the Gospel and given by him who enlightens all men that they may at length have life.
This reading has helped me a lot. I know sometimes if the person knows I am Christian and I tried to talk about the beliefs of the bible and they are catholic and do not want to hear it I do walk away with respect as you state in the reading. Then I just show by example the way I act and do not speak about the subject again. Less is more in this case.
Any belief that claims that Jesus Christ is the Son of God should be supported. But not any belief that does not believe that Jesus is the Son of God. Jesus Himself said anyone coming to preach another gospel that does not claim that he is Lord do not listen to them.
"Should Christians be tolerant of other people's religious beliefs?" For argument's sake, what if "christians" aren't tolerant of what others believe? What will happen? This sounds like just another loaded question, to me. It's like all the other questions about what "christians" subscribe to, that has nothing to do with the gospel. Should christians support (or be tolerant of) interracial marriage... Or should christians tolerate gay people... If the answer to any of these is NO, then what? What's the "christian's" next move? Tolerate - (1) to allow the existence, presence, practice, or act of without prohibition or hindrance; to permit (2) to endure without repugnance; put up with. So to put the question in context, someone is asking if "christians" should allow or permit, without repugnance, to put up with other people, who don't believe the same as "christians" believe. It's hard to take the question seriously. The believer is commissioned to spread the good news (Matt 28). He/She is told to MAKE disciples of all the nations. I emphasized make to make a point. The believer isn't told, 'Don't take no for an answer.' Or, 'make them an offer that they can't refuse.' (Godfather jargon). Or, 'If you don't score converts you'll have to give an account to why you didn't.' The believer has been forgiven of his/her sin and is relieved of the burden thereof. The Lord has become their Lord, and they want the people who don't know the Lord to know that He will be their Lord too. That's it, totally. The believer doesn't have the authority to allow or disallow anything anyone else says or does. People can marry whoever they choose to marry in a free society. People can have any legal medical procedure they choose to have in a free society. "Christians" who choose to try to hinder or prohibit people from exercising their freedoms are free to endure the consequences of their actions and decisions. Why ask if Jesus' followers should tolerate other people's religious beliefs? Does God tolerate people who don't believe in Him? He says, "The fool has said in his heart, there is no God ((Psalm 14:1) Nowhere in the Psalm does God say, 'Stop them from saying that!' It says that God looks down from heaven to see if He can find anyone who understands and tries to get to know Him. In the parable of the weeds (and the wheat) of Matt 13, Jesus tells a story of a man who plants good seed in his field. The man's enemy came by night and planted weeds among the farmer's wheat. When the weeds sprung up, his hired hands asked the farmer if he wanted them to go and pull the weeds up. He answered, "No, an enemy of mine did this. Let the weeds grow with the wheat. If you pull up the weeds, you'll root up the wheat also. When harvest time comes, I'll let the reapers handle it." Why didn't he let the hired hands pull up the weeds? Because they are not the reapers. And because the wheat wasn't mature yet. The weeds and the wheat were too closely connected in the field to destroy the weeds without harming the wheat. So he said, "tolerate" the weeds for now. (Matt 13:30) And another thing also: Wheat and tares closely resemble each other. The untrained eye can have trouble distinguishing one from the other. Should christians tolerate people of other religious beliefs? In an Islamic state, should "muslims" tolerate "christians"? That might be a question that helps with answering the first question. All the pontificating about what "christians" have to offer to a world on its way to hell without a Savior, is good PR. But it doesn't answer the question. Jesus already answered it.
The underlying motivation that God has and that He wants us to have is love (Matthew 22:37-40.) Paul then provided an important standard for Christian communication and reaction to other beliefs. Speaking to the Church at Ephesus, he warned the Christians about being tossed about by the winds of false doctrine (Ephesians 4:14-16.) Thus, it remains the same for us today, in this ever demanding spirit of social liberalism, that all beliefs are same if they just are "tolerant". Since the philosophy, that there are no absolutes, is so prevalent in our society, as taught in liberalistic schools and universities, Christians are under pressure to bow to these demands. We should, though, look to Noah, and do what God commands, keep working as He guides and keep preaching and teaching the Truth of His Word, in spite of the pressures and persecutions it may bring. Love all, but let our love be clothed in the armour of God's Word.
1 Peter 3:15-16 NIV: ”But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander.” The key point is to be prepared to give an answer to those who ask you to give the reason for the hope that you have AND to do it with gentleness and respect. Let the Holy Spirit do the work of conviction.
The Lord Jesus sent his apostles to be his witness, not judges. He is the Judge of the living and the dead.
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