Do I Have To Convert My Buddhist Neighbor?

New question for this week!

“Can we be good Christians and at the same time allow other people of different faiths to believe as they wish? Jews, muslims, etc.”

Answer- Sort of 🙂

boldly_preach_the_gospel-title-3-still-16x9Here’s the deal- The Bible tells a unique story of how God created the world and eventually came into the world in Jesus in order to bring us to redemption.

This is a story that is true for everyone in all parts of the world for all faiths.

But…

It can feel very exclusive to make a claim about Christianity that makes it seem like every other religion is wrong. This feels arrogant and a bit prideful.

So, how do we maintain the unique revelation of Jesus Christ without isolating people we love who may come from another faith background?

Here are three ideas:

Idea #1-Go and make disciples, not converts.

It is not your job to try and convert everyone that you come across. (Who wants to hang around someone who is always pushing them to believe something different?) Instead, Jesus tells us to go and make disciples of all nations.

To disciple someone involves sharing your life over a long period of time with someone you care about. This happens organically. So go and have genuine friendships with people from all faiths- not with an intention to convert, but with the intention to love.

At the end of the day, you cannot control the human heart. Only God can speak into a person’s life. Your job is to genuinely love all of God’s children. And if you do this with all you can muster, God will work through you.

Billy Graham put it well when he said: “It is the Holy Spirit’s job to convict, God’s job to judge, and my job to love.”

When we do our job well, the world becomes a better place.

Idea #2- An invitation is better than an confrontation.

Everyone is searching for God (although not everyone will call this search for meaning and significance a search for God). Rather than attempt to prove your understanding of God, invite others onto the same faith journey that you are on.

I am a Christian because I believe that a life with Christ is the most fulfilling, abundant life possible. Not everyone believes this, and I’m not planning on debating and convincing others on this point. But I will invite you to come and see what a life with Jesus is like.

Because it really is life changing.

Everybody is searching for meaning and significance. I believe that this is found in Jesus. If you are interested in learning more about this, I’d invite you to join me on this journey.

Idea #3- Get to know Jesus.

The difference- and I mean the main difference- between Christianity and all other religions is Jesus. As you begin to understand Jesus, you will begin to see the distinctiveness of Christianity.

At the end of the day, its not about a religion; its about a relationship. A relationship with Jesus that is founded on grace. Its not about doing more “right” things than “wrong” things. Its not about losing yourself to “otherness.”

Its about growing in a deeper understanding and awareness of the grace of Jesus Christ.

When this relationship becomes real, then it will naturally flow over into all parts of your life.

 

 

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