I recently had the privilege of responding to a blogger’s comment, one which advocated that there be no criticism of religions opposed to, or religions other than, Christianity. Furthermore, the opinion of the concerned blogger was that evangelical Christians should gain a full understanding of other religions, by listening to everything followers of those religions have to say, rather than warning them of their error in love and out of concern.
Satan’s deceptively brilliant idea of punting religious tolerance among the nations, in opposition to the biblical instruction to speak only the truth in love and in accordance with the Gospel, has gained mammoth religious popularity and has invaded the psyche of converts to the globally accepted interfaith protagonists.
While this is in agreement with the worldly message emanating from the post-modern emergent church, and is certainly what followers of false religions necessarily endorse, it is nonetheless contrary to the Scriptural instruction to the believer in Jesus Christ. Sadly, and in an ever increasing number of communities, it is a legislated prescription to the people to be tolerant of all and sundry, failing which prosecution or, at the very least, social persecution is certain.
I am now far more thankful than I was frustrated at the time, for comment by that blogger which motivated me to give thought, once again, to the matter. I trust that my response at the time, can be positively shared here, on our blog.
It went something like this:
In reality, surely you [advocates of worldly religions] cannot be so cold and hateful toward your fellow men, to expect Christians to simply sit back while concealing the Truth, and to expect Christians to be tolerant of false religions for the sake of an unbeliever’s feelings, or for the sake of temporary [artificial] peace? All this while Christians are fully aware that those followers of false gods are headed for an eternity separated from God in hell?
If Christians do not point out (constructively criticize) the deception of Satan in luring the world into his false religions, the Truth will not be heard by those who do not know the Savior and Lord Jesus Christ.
You [those who expect Christians to be tolerant of error] surely cannot expect Christians to be non-critical of religions of all kinds, for if that were so, it would make heartless and deceitful liars of all true Christians. True Christians do not criticize other religions because they hate the followers of false religions, to the contrary! They criticize those religions because they LOVE the deceived followers of false religions enough to care about their eternal salvation, which cannot be found anywhere except in Jesus Christ.
Furthermore it is the duty of those who know the Truth, the saved believers in Jesus Christ, to make the Truth in the Word of God known to all people, failing which the blood of the unbeliever will be on the hands of the believer. Ezekiel 3:18 expresses the position of the Christian believer: “If I say to the wicked, ‘You shall surely die,’ and you give him no warning, nor speak to warn the wicked from his wicked way, in order to save his life, that wicked person shall die for his iniquity, but his blood I will require at your hand.”
The problem is not criticizing or being critical of any given religion, the problem is that those who follow false religions are those who do not wish to believe the Word of God, and who become very defensive of their false gods when confronted with the Truth.
If one is not convicted of the lies and deceptive beliefs of false religions by the indwelling Holy Spirit, then tolerance and acceptance of any and all forms of religion seems to be a sensible and honorable stance to adopt. Believing that the Almighty Creator God is the same god of all religions is a terrible error with deadly consequences for those who do not come to know Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.
There exists no need for those who have come to know the Truth, to listen to or understand any message of any religion which is not of God, whether it be a doctrine of man or demon in any false religion. Satan has motivated the formation of thousands of different religions to keep unbelieving people in a state of confusion and blindness and to mislead them through subtle error. It is Satan’s explicit intention to obscure the Truth of the Word of God from man, thereby assuring that unbelievers do not receive eternal life.
God’s clear instruction is to NOT listen to the doctrines of men, but to adhere to the Truth in the Word of God, the Bible. If you give heed ONLY to the Word of God, the Bible, by His Grace you WILL come to know all you would ever need to know in this life. It will then become perfectly clear why all religions are totally and utterly superfluous to eternal salvation and why it is impossible to be an evangelical Christian and at the same time to NOT be critical of false religions.
The Word of God tells us this:
Luk 10:25 And behold, a lawyer stood up to put Him to the test, saying, “Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?”
Luk 10:26 He said to him, “What is written in the Law? How do you read it?”
Luk 10:27 And he answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself.”
Luk 10:28 And He said to him, “You have answered correctly; do this, and you will live.”
If we love the Lord our God with all our heart and with all our soul and with all our strength and with all our mind, we will attempt to apply all our faculties including our ability to critically examine false religions. If we also love our neighbors, in accordance with the same passage of Scripture, we will make every attempt to warn them about false religions.
Therefore it is the DUTY of all true evangelical Christians to criticize in truth and in love, by testing everything according to the Word of God, by applying our minds and by issuing biblically approved warnings to followers of false religions. As the evidence suggests, those who wish to dispute that, should do so in the knowledge that their dispute is with the Word of God.
Being critical of all religions is therefore not additional or causative to the world’s problems as the blogger suggested, rather it is part of God’s solution to the problems, through the Body of His saved believers!