It’s good to talk

by Richard on May 25, 2012

Looking Deeper offers some wisdom on inter-faith dialogue.

It is impossible to have a genuine and helpful debate about something when both parties are consistently misunderstanding each other.

This is why I think we need first to start promoting dialogue with the express intention of understanding the beliefs of the other individual. I say individual because within every faith will be a whole array of personalities, groups and interpretations. We would not want to be identified with everyone who labels themselves ‘Christian’ – why should it be different in any other faith be different?

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

1

Peter Shearer 05.25.12 at 10:28 pm

I think that is prefectly so - the divide beteen liberals and evangelicals is one such and between evanglicals and Charismatics is another which David Pawson ( ex Methodist!) has written a veryu helpful book on - but I cant quite remember its title.

2

Richard 05.26.12 at 8:30 am

It’s good to hear from you Peter. You’re quite right: the gap between conservative evangelicals on the one hand and charismatics on the other is as wide as you’llfind anywhere in the Church. A bit of listening probably wouldn’t come amiss there either. Not that either side of that fight are likely to be taking much notice of me!

3

Mark Byron 05.27.12 at 3:18 am

A lot depends on what type of “conservative” you’re talking about. Most evangelicals have few problems with charismatics, but a number of evangelical denominations do; for instance, the Southern Baptist’s main mission board has a no tongue-talkers-need-apply sign out, even though their faith statement (the Baptist Faith and Message) has no opinion on the charismatic front.

That being said, being actively charismatic as a pastor in a non-charismatic evangelical denomination is usually not a good career move; that would me more likely to be seen in mainline denominations where more theological leeway is often granted.

4

Graham 05.27.12 at 7:59 am

When at theological cemetary I am sure I was saved by the Pool table. Sometimes arguements and debates raged that seemed to have nothing to do with ‘how then shall we live?’ or what went on in the world outside.

Even though I would have labelled myself ‘evangelical’ (I perhaps still am, although I don’t like labels) I got very good at Pool…

I love a good argument though, but I hate one that is a dialogue of the deaf. These days I try to listen more and speak less. Don’t always manage it though….

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