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Love Those from Other Religions

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Love Those from Other Religions

No matter how they look or smell, Christians should love people of other religions. It doesn’t mean we have to agree with them! But instead of feeling intimidated, superior or upset we should tap into the feelings we’ve each experienced of being an outsider and reach out to them.

The only way we’re going to make a difference is to open the door to friendship and hospitality to those who are unlike us.

God wants us to reach out to people of other faiths by being a non-threatening friend in a hostile world.

God said to the Israelites as they were about to inherit their own land, “For the LORD your God is God of gods and Lord of lords, the great God, mighty and awesome, who shows no partiality.”[1]

God is the God of those who have other gods. He’s greater than their false gods. He is the Lord of all those who served a false lord. “God administers justice for the fatherless and the widow, and loves the stranger, giving him food and clothing. Therefore love the stranger, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt.”[2]

A lot of Christians in America feel like we are becoming the minority in the area of religion and faith. It feels threatening.  But my challenge to you today is to take that feeling and use it for the purpose of God in this world.

We live in a world that demands to be accepted. We don’t always know what to do with that, how to proceed as Christ followers. I constantly pray and ask Jesus what He would have us to do in this time, place, and culture? How He would respond to the issues of the LGBT community, the growing Muslim population as well as other faiths or non-faiths.

I think deep down we know the answer. Jesus would make room at the table. Jesus would reach out and have the conversation, even if it raised the eyebrows of the religious crowd. Jesus capitalized on people’s feelings of rejection in order to bring the rejected crowd to God.

Our anger and opposition against others will never win them. Jesus said it was really very simple—love God and love people. If we try to see people like God does, we will never be hateful, fearful, or follow our natural inclination to hide ourselves away from those who are different from us.

To the best of our ability, we will love them and make room for them. Lakeview is a multi-ethnic, diverse church and I think we are doing a fairly good job of making room for people from other countries.

I hope we clearly communicate with people of other lifestyles, religions and walks of life that, even if we don’t understand or agree with their way of life, we still love them and will keep the door open to relationships. After all, that is what God did and continues to do for us!

[1] Deuteronomy 10:17

[2] Deuteronomy 10:18-10 NKJV

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About Ron Bontrager

Lead Pastor of Lakeview Church in Indianapolis.

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