Devotionals for Pastors - The Intolerant
By Ed Wrather
For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and for the Greek. - Romans 1:16.
When the Southern Baptist Convention published a booklet urging Christians to pray for the deliverance of Hindus from the power of satan there were many who condemned the action. The Southern Baptist Convention’s International Mission Board has distributed prayer guides of a similar nature in the past. Other prayer guides have asked Baptists to pray for the conversion of Jews and Muslims. One Saturday more than 100 people picketed outside of Second Baptist Church; one the countries’ largest Southern Baptist churches in Houston, Texas. A Houston attorney and Hindu, Amit Misra, said “we want all people to understand that religious intolerance is rearing its head in this country.”
Can we be completely tolerant and non-offensive toward all other religions? Yes, we can be but in the process of doing so we will demonstrate that we are ashamed of the gospel of Jesus Christ. As Peter said about Jesus (Acts 4:12) “Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.” If we are truly concerned about those of other religions we will love them but will be unmoved by their arguments of intolerance. There will be a price to pay. Stephen (Acts 8:58) could tell you about the cost. Paul could tell you about the cost (Acts 14:19; 2 Corinthians 11:25-27). James, the brother of John could speak of the cost (Acts12:2). There are many others who could speak of the cost (Hebrews 11:26-38) but they could tell you also of the glory of faithfulness (Hebrews 11:40).
Let us not be ashamed of the Gospel of Jesus Christ by remaining silent. Let us make it clear to all nations and peoples that “there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”