What about other religions?
Each week we are asking the speaker to give quick answers to the three top questions from the group discussions. This week, Michael Green answers questions following his talk on Christianity and other religions.
You made a link between the practice of Islam and the jihadists we now see of IS. But weren’t Christians in the past (eg in the crusades) just as violent? How do we reconcile these things?
There was terrible slaughter on both sides in the Crusades, but those who participated were often not true Christians at all and certainly did not follow the example of Jesus. Jesus never used the sword and never sanctioned it. Muhammad did, and currently Islam does – not just Isis but think of the regular ‘honour killing’ of apostates, and the persecution of Christians by Muslims in many lands.
"There is beauty in other religions and we should embrace that. Indeed there is a kind of truth in other religions." Are all other religions entirely wrong?
The non-Christian religions seem to me to resemble a patchwork quilt, with brighter and darker components in different proportions. There are elements of truth which must come from God himself; there are elements which are definitely false and sometimes devilish; and there are elements of human aspiration after truth. Nowhere is there any parallel to the sheer grace of God who comes at infinite personal cost to the rescue of flawed human beings.
In a multicultural society like ours, how can Christians hold to the uniqueness of Jesus and still respect those of different faiths?
Easily. You hold your convictions firmly, with graciousness and humility, but you respect the right of others to think differently. In matters of faith you begin by seeking common ground and then discussing the differences, not the other way around.