Why Did Jesus, Moses, the Buddha and Mohammed Cross the Road?

imagesWhat an interesting title to a book. Yes, this is Brian McLaren’s newest release, though it came out a few months back: Why Did Jesus, Moses, the Buddha and Mohammed Cross the Road? The subtitle gives a bit more insight into the theme of the book: Christian Identity in a Multi-Faith World.

Even more interesting is the date that the book was released – September 11th, 2012 – the anniversary of the significant event etched in the minds of not only every American, but all humanity.

So how are Christians to engage with those of other faiths?

Now, I am aware that, at least for many evangelicals, the name, Brian McLaren, immediately sends off alarm bells. The question might arise: Does he really have anything truly and properly Christian to offer to this discussion?

Why this reaction? Mainly because of 2 reasons: 1) his openness to same-sex relationships/marriages (even leading the commitment ceremony at his son’s same-sex wedding) and 2) his not-so-clearly-defined view on whether God accepts or rejects those of other faiths and religions. These are currently two hot topic issues for evangelical Christians in the 21st century.

Now, I am very much aware that some might actually have a question for me due to my own reading of McLaren’s book: Where do you stand on these issues? Many will want me to clarify my person stance on these issues. Agree with McLaren and your suspect. Disagree with McLaren and you’re probably an ok guy.

Well, I’ll come on to that a bit later. But let’s first look at the text, since this is a book review of some sorts.

As noted earlier, the central theme of the book is just this: Getting Christians to think about how we engage with those of other faiths and religions in our world today. We live in a world that is extremely pluralistic (and it’s probably going to become even more with the internet, social media and a host of other things). Some 50 to 100 years ago, everyone in your town believed very similarly to you, thought similarly to you, went to the same church, dressed similarly, enjoyed similar cuisine and more. But today, it’s likely that some of your neighbours are quite different from you – holding a different religion, from a different country and culture, speaking a different language, and much more. This is definitely true for myself living in the Brussels area, the capital of the European Union where almost every nation under heaven resides!

And, so, while it is true that there is no overtly new issue under the sun, there is a sense in which we practically engage with matters on a different level than our forefathers and foremothers. One issue is that certain nations are no longer considered Christian or Buddhist. No longer is America and western Europe identified as ‘Christian,’ while China is identified as Buddhist. No longer is Africa mostly animistic. There are probably more Christians in China or India or Africa than in western Europe today.

So how do we live as Christians today, all the while acknowledging this demographic shift?

Well, it does call for a change. And this is what McLaren champions in his book, Why Did Jesus, Moses, the Buddha and Mohammed Cross the Road? How can we, as Christians, better interact with those of other religious backgrounds?

McLaren identifies 2 normal responses from Christians towards those of other faiths: a) The stronger our Christian commitment, the stronger our aversion or opposition to other religions. We focus on emphasising our differences, framing them as right/wrong, good/evil, better/worse. b) Some carry a more positive, accepting response towards those of other religions. They minimalise differences and maximise commonalities, all the while never proselytising. This could end up weakening one’s Christian commitment.

Brian takes time to explore what he believes is a third and better option – having a Christian identity that is both strong and kind, a Christian faith that is both faithful to Christ and hospitable to those of other religions.

And, so, he adapts the line from a well-known joke (the chicken crossing the road) and uses it to open discussion of how the 4 greatest religious figures in history would interact with one another. Or, in particular, how Jesus would react to the other three. McLaren remarks:

So, why is it funny to ask about Jesus, Moses, the Buddha and Mohammed crossing the road? Before looking for a punch line, just for fun try to imagine the scene: four of history’s greatest religious leaders . . . not fighting, not arguing, not damning and condemning one another, not launching crusades or jihads, but walking together, moving together, leading together. Doesn’t that already reverse some of our expectations? And doesn’t that reversal expose our unspoken expectation – that different religions are inherently and unchangeably incompatible, disharmonious, fractious and hostile towards one another? (p2)

McLaren continues:

If you’re a Christian like me, of whatever sort – Catholic, Protestant or Eastern Orthodox; conservative, liberal or moderate; traditional or whatever – if you love Jesus, if you know and have confidence in him as Lord, Saviour, Son of God, Son of Man, God incarnate, Word made flesh and more, let me ask you to seriously consider this: how do you think Jesus would treat Moses, Mohammed and Siddhartha Gautama (the Buddha) if they took a walk across a road together?

Would Jesus push Moses aside and demand to cross first, claiming that his ancestor’s failed religion had been forever superseded by his own? Would he trade insults with Mohammed, claiming his crusaders could whip Mohammed’s jihadists any day of the week, demanding that Mohammed cross behind, not beside him? Would Jesus demand the Buddha kneel at his feet and demonstrate submission before letting him cross? Or would he walk with them and, once on the other side, welcome each to a table of fellowship, not demanding any special status or privileges, maybe even taking the role of a servant – hanging up their coats, getting them something to eat and drink, making sure each felt welcome, safe and at home? (p3)

Brian would argue that Jesus’ response would be the latter. And I tend to agree.

We, Christians, have a not-so-good history of interaction with those of other faiths and religions. Think of the crusades; think of colonialism; think of the Inquisition; think even of the inter-Christian disputes such as how the Anabaptists were treated (some were killed for their practice of re-baptising people as believers). Actually, in many respects, our track record is appalling. For some, this black-marked history has meant that they abandon Christianity altogether. For others, it has meant that they abandon the name and the institution. But does this have to be our reaction? Or should we instead look to repent and rethink how to be faithful Christians in a 21st century, pluralistic world?

This is what McLaren challenges us to do. How do we still live out our Christian uniqueness, faithfully following Christ and Scripture, without using any of this as a weapon against the human family?

Think of the Christ we follow. One who ate with prostitutes and tax collectors (or, since the label ‘tax collector’ doesn’t bring the shock level that it did in the first century, maybe we could reinterpret that label as ‘child molester’). Jesus made it very clear he came for the outsiders – it’s the sick who need a doctor, not the well. And now the well are called to extend hands of healing to those who are sick.

Of course, the call to follow Jesus means that we become disciples, students of Christ. But being a disciple of Jesus Christ does not only mean we have correct doctrine (orthodoxy). It also means very much that we walk out a life that emulates Jesus (orthopraxy). They go hand in hand. And living our lives like Christ entails having compassion on those normally labelled as outcasts. Remember, Jesus had his harshest rebukes for the religious who ostracised the broken, hurting and downtrodden. His mercy was greatest for the outcasts.

Yes, yes. In time we will have to talk about issues of sin and belief. But no one has ever been accepted into the fold of Christ after they finally sorted out all their beliefs and problems.

Thus, the challenge still remains – many need to change how they engage with those of other religions and faiths, those also created in God’s image and of whom Christ calls to himself. Could we actually envision inviting a family of Muslims into our homes for a meal? Could we go on holiday with a Buddhist colleague? Could we have open and honest conversation with an atheist, not even with the intent of seeing them as an ‘evangelism project’ for which we only befriend them to convert them?

If not, why not?

But moving even further past the challenge that we reassess how we engage with those of other faiths, McLaren takes a fresh look at some of the important Christian doctrines, considering how we might practically approach them in our relationships with those of other religions. Some of these are the doctrine of original sin, the doctrine of atonement, the doctrine of the Trinity, the doctrine of election, etc. I suppose some might think McLaren desires to twist all of these doctrines away from the ‘normative’ position. Yet, I think that a) most of his perspectives are quite helpful in freshly approaching certain important doctrines and b) there is enough space within Christian orthodoxy to not demand that one fall within a particular tradition’s view on all doctrines.

Now, as I mentioned beforehand, many Christians are uncomfortable with McLaren’s position on a few issues. He is an outsider for many of my evangelical brothers and sisters. So I am happy to state my thoughts on the 2 issues mentioned at the beginning of this article – on same-sex relationships and his inclusive leanings towards those of other faiths and religions.

But I need to firstly admit that I don’t have all the answers. While some have perfectly formulated answers to the 2 issues above, and I have fairly formulated thoughts on them at this point, I like what I recently read from David Fitch, an American evangelical leader and seminary professor. He asks the question, ‘Why do you need to know where I stand?’ Or, he poses this question to the many who have asked him to clarify his position about gays. What he, and I, suspect is that this topic, at least one’s stance on gays, can become the definitive issue of whether someone should be included ‘in’ or ‘out’, at least in regards to evangelicalism. So, tell me what you think about gays [and those of other religions]. Define where you stand. I need to find out what you believe so I can decide what I think about you – are you acceptable or unacceptable? Confirm that they are on the outside.

This approach is quite warped from the beginning. We end up treating our brothers and sisters like we treat those who are not yet followers of Christ. McLaren also challenges this ‘us vs. them’ mentality. It’s been our emphasis for so long.

Listen, my understanding is that God has ordained that male and female are to be joined together in the marriage covenant. And I do believe that Jesus Christ is the greatest revelation of the Father, the only avenue by which we are reconciled with the Father. And I do believe that people are called to conversion-new birth in Christ by the power of the Spirit and gospel.

But I’m not sure that holding a clear Christian identity calls for me, or us, to identify 1 or 2 issues as the boundary markers for who is acceptable and unacceptable. Again, I’m not advocating of a mere mishmash of all beliefs. I simply trust that, when it’s all said and done, our Father knows how to faithfully deal with Muslims, Buddhists, gays, etc. Not to mention that I trust my Father knows how to correctly deal with arrogant, self-righteous and prideful bigots like myself. Sometimes God allows me a glimpse of myself…and it devastates me.

So, while I might not personally agree with some of McLaren’s perspectives, I do recommend this book as one of many valuable tools in helping us understand and dialogue with those of other faiths and religions in our world today. This is not unlike Miroslav Volf’s project entitled, Allah: A Christian Response, of which I posted a review here. Volf argues that, in our current pluralistic society, Christians should look to find common ground with Muslims, rather than uncommon ground, all that we might break down our misconceptions of one another and even consider how we might work together as bearers of God’s image to better the world we live in. It will call for a re-evaluation of our approach to Muslims and Buddhists and Hindus, one that some won’t feel they can do with a clear conscience. And that is understandable. But I think it a worthy project to consider.

As McLaren asks us to do, imagine Jesus interacting with Mohammed, Moses and the Buddha. I can only envision that Jesus would sit down with them, share a meal, wash their feet, befriend them and enjoy conversation. Yes, he would desire to make the Father known to them. But he would do so with hospitality, charity, compassion and mercy. Might we do the same?

If you would be interested in a short video introduction to McLaren’s book, you can view it on Vimeo here. Lastly, you can also listen to a 35-minute talk at Greenbelt where McLaren introduces this topic prior to the release of the book.

Also, I wanted to make known a couple of posts from my friend, Dave Derbyshire. He has posted two articles on McLaren’s book – 1) quotes from the book and 2) his review.

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15 thoughts on “Why Did Jesus, Moses, the Buddha and Mohammed Cross the Road?

  1. Hi Scott,

    I must say I really have a problem with the following quote from McLaren. (But then, I’ll bet that comes as no surprise to you, does it?!?) So, why is it funny to ask about Jesus, Moses, the Buddha and Mohammed crossing the road? Before looking for a punch line, just for fun try to imagine the scene: four of history’s greatest religious leaders . . . not fighting, not arguing, not damning and condemning one another, not launching crusades or jihads, but walking together, moving together, leading together. Doesn’t that already reverse some of our expectations? And doesn’t that reversal expose our unspoken expectation – that different religions are inherently and unchangeably incompatible, disharmonious, fractious and hostile towards one another? (p2)

    If we truly believe that Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life, how can we believe anything else then that Christianity and the other world religions are anything but incompatible? And while it might be possible to do humanitarian work or something similar with those of other faiths, as soon as it comes to speaking of what we believe to be the truth, how can we “lead together” with those that do not at all believe the same thing?

    • Cheryl –

      Thanks for commenting. I know this is a difficult issue for many to grapple with. As I said, I don’t have all the practical answers, but rather see a possible way to connect with those of other faiths & religions, all that we might see them drawn to Christ. However, I would ponder whether there is a better way to build relationships with these people other than to simply see them as our ‘evangelism projects’. I want Muslims and Buddhists and Hindus and atheists to know Christ, but each person calls for its own wisdom of how to do this. And if they are antagonistic, we might still be able to extend grace, yet knowing there could be a time when the relationships must end because of continued antagonism.

      I once heard a church leader refer to Buddhists as demonic. Now, I very much believe such can be a reality. But rather than bringing forth the comment that they are demonic, what if we were able to say what we appreciate about them?

      Lastly, think of Jews and Christians. This is an easy one to consider the commonalities between the two. Is it possible that Christians & Muslims have some commonality? After reading Miroslav Volf’s book, I’m convinced that we do. In a building joined next to our church building, we used to have a Muslim family that ran a Moroccan restaurant. They were a beautiful family and the husband let my wife and I pray for them at different times. I remember ending the prayers with, ‘in Jesus name’. I think there was an opportunity there.

      In some cases, this will not be possible. But, as we seek peaceful relationships with those of other faiths & religions (Rom 12:18), I think most times we will find opportunities for commonality, all that it might be a bridge towards knowing the one true God in Jesus Christ.

  2. Well first Mr. McLaren is simply a theological “emergent”, and this whole subject is simply modern so-called (really postmodern) pop culture theology – again so-called. And rather than seek to write a long post here, I will simply say, count me out – Perhaps I should just consider removing myself from this whole blog? I mean who really seems to care about the edge of Biblical and Theological Truth these days in Europe? At least in any whole manner! And note I am a Irish Brit, and I know the said culture there these days to degree. Indeed biblical & theological conservatism is so very lean these days, sadly. But there are still some of us left, especially in the Reformed camp.

    Finally, I am not surprised really at your “downgrade” Scott, I have surely noted it for sometime!

    • Robert –

      Thanks for commenting here. I suppose that your approach shows the opposite of what I would advocate – amongst both brothers & sisters in Christ and those of other faiths. I understand that some can be so tolerant, so wishy-washy, that it leaves you with nothing of substance. I do not advocate this, but that we recognise that Jesus Christ is the Son of God by which all people are called back to the Father. His death & resurrection have made this available for all.

      As I also stated, I recognise that McLaren leans too far on a spectrum, one that I do not see myself fully embracing. Still, I think his thoughts about inter-faith dialogue and relationships are worth chewing over. He shared some very practical experiences from his own life, one that left leaders of other religions shocked that a Christian would try to lead such a life. That spoke volumes to me, for it shows how many of other faiths & religions perceive us – close-minded, angry, hateful, bigots, etc.

      I continue to recognise this is a difficult one. I don’t have all the answers, and perhaps one day I will realise before the Father that I am being too ‘open’ and ‘wishy-washy’. I stand firm in my faith in Christ, but I stand firm as well that Christ is calling to my Muslims, Buddhist, Hindu and Jewish neighbours, and that I have been called to extend the compassion of Christ to them.

      • @Scott: Well thank God this is not about personality really, I admit I am an older crusty one time combat Royal Marine (over ten years active, and retired from the reserves) who at one time fought some of these Muslims from Radical Islam, in Gulf War 1 (and note our missions were much more of a deeper penetration, than the Americans, then. We watched and sometimes engaged the so-called Republican Guard, I was a Recon officer.) And I have had a few friends and their sons “now” (Brits, and one cousin of my own, RMC), that have laid it all down in death, in Afghanisian. And then of course later in the 90’s I lived and taught in Israel. So on this subject I am not netural for sure!

        Now as to McLaren, I too have read some of his work (past), and I am just not impressed with his biblical and theological capabilities. As you know, I am myself some kind of a “theolog”, and it is here that almost everything must pass the biblical muster for me at least! Indeed we just don’t have much agreement here biblically & theologically, and most especially on the position and so-called “calling” of women in the Church. As too the aspects of soteriology, i.e. grace and salvation. I am Reformed, always an Anglican here, but one fully with the position of the Infralapsarian! (As most of the Reformed Creeds btw)

        I don’t see myself as much help on your blog, since it mostly runs your vision. I sometimes just try to keep you somewhat “theologically” honest, but aye I am a neo-Reformed guy! Again, perhaps its time for me to just move off? That will be my choice, however. You have been somewhat gracious to allow me to speak my thoughts. And for this I say thanks!

      • Hi Robert –

        I, by no means, would ask you to leave. We can be a sharpening to one another. My own thoughts is that your perspective is quite a bit defined. Interestingly enough, I probably found myself in the exact same theological positions as you (minus the dispensationalism). It’s taken a gracious work to allow me to be open a bit more outside of my particular American, middle-class evangelicalism. I don’t say that snidely, but truly. I fit very well into such a paradigm and could have never seen myself taking a step back. But, here I am. I hope we can still learn from one another.

      • @Scott: Defined is a nice way to say it, but at this point of my Christian life and journey, and I am surely of a certain mind biblically & theologically, but I do hope I am able to change when the Word & Spirit of God moves me! I am one that really sees the real and deep slippage of both our Western and so-called Free world, in and certainly towards apostasy! WE could most definitely be the generation (forty years or so) that could see the Visible Second Coming of Christ!? One thing is certain to my mind anyway, and that is modern or so-called National Israel will most surely be the people in Zech. 14! (Rom. 9: 4-5 ; 11: 25-29, etc. ; 15: 8-9) And whether I am alive or not? Is not the issue, but the “sure and certain hope of our Lord’s Coming”, and the close of this dispensation (which most surely includes the great Gentile apostasy!) We are seeing things the church and world, i.e. culture has simply never seen! The handwriting is quite on the Wall! (Luke 18: 7-8) I am somewhat of a Progressive Dispensationalist (with the likes of Bock & Blaising, and Saucy, etc.) So this really presses me more so than many other issues in the Church & Culture! But, sometimes many other subjects and issues run together here! Note my so-called “Calvinism”, is not so classic Reformed, at least in certain places. My Anglicanism is surely Evangelical & Reformed, but again my eclecticism is always real, our biblical methods must always seek some systematics, but not at the loss of the biblical tensions themselves! It is here that I like and read the Wesley brothers, and even some of the EO, and even once and awhile a Catholic or two! (But surely not ROMAN Catholicism, in theology). But I am surely a “churchman”, however I hope somewhat in the likes of the real John Calvin, and the historical Genevan Academy & Reformers. I simply love both Theodore Beza and Francis Turretin! And today, I consider Richard Muller to be one of the finest Reformed historical scholars & theolog’s alive. His book: The Unaccommodated Calvin, Studies in the Foundation of a Theological Tradition, should be must reading for all serious theological students and pastors!

        Well there is a bit of my thinking, hard fought and really years won! We all must do our homework, and we ALL will see the Bema-Seat of Christ, too! But what will God In Christ see there from and “in” us? By sovereign grace & glory! 🙂

  3. Cheryl & Robert –

    I read a very interesting article over at Internet Monk this morning. One thing Jeff Dunn, the author, says that really struck a chord with me is: There has been too much attention focused on what we are against. The world knows evangelicalism based on those things we fight against.

    He goes on to talk about the essential foundation of the love of Jesus Christ. Not a wishy-washy love. But the deep, compassionate love of Christ that should be displayed. What if we were known more by what we stand for and not for what we stand against?

    • Good morning again Scott. At least it is morning here in the USA!

      I agree 100% that the church as a whole is not doing a very good job of showing love to each other–or to those outside of the church of whatever religion they are. Or maybe they claim no religion whatsoever.

      But I don’t believe we as a church can turn to loving people and not also be known for what we are against. I think what we need here is a proper balance. It seems to me that Jesus and the New Testament writers made it clear many times what they were both for and against. To not speak of being against the things that the Bible tells us destroys lives, and by extension societies, seems to me to become a wishy-washy kind of love too.

      I don’t think I am so much in disagreement with what you are saying in this article,Scott, as what McLaren is saying. I think he has gone way out on a limb and has even left orthodoxy behind. I read that article you linked above with quotes from his book. There were statements made there that troubled me even more, I think, then the one I brought up in my first comment here.

      Take this statement, for instance: Solidarity: My understanding of Jesus and his message leads me to see each faith, including my own, as having its own history, value, strengths and weaknesses. I seek to affirm and celebrate all that is good in each faith, and I build intentional relationships of mutual sharing and respectful collaboration with people of all faiths, so all faiths can keep growing and contributing to God’s will being done on earth as in heaven. (8

      If we truly believe that Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life, indeed the only way to the Father, why on earth are we to be interested in growing other faiths that do not recognize that at all? That to me is outrageous and is a prescription for sending people to an eternity without God.

      I think that the good that Mclaren may present in his book has been so far outweighed by the negative that it truly troubles me to see his books being promoted as they are in the Chritian Church. Even with the disclaimer that may be given that not everything he says is agreed with by the one doing the promoting.

      • Cheryl –

        Yes, it’s about 4:30pm here. 🙂

        You are correct in recognising the need for balance. As the article at Internet Monk referenced, I think we are known more by what we are against than what we are for. We need both. But what takes priority? Or where is balance? Possibly a bit of a pendulum swing to the other side could be helpful in some ways.

        Do you not believe there is truth in, say, Islam? Even a grain of truth? I watch plenty of movies that have no Christian foundation, yet I find that the truth of God is coming through. All truth is God’s truth. So if Muslims believe in one God (monotheistic), then that is a good starting point. If Jews believe in one God, then that is a good starting point. And most perceptions from the ‘other side’ about what we mean by Trinity should also be rejected by Christians. We don’t want to hold to false views of God.

        If Buddhists want to reach Nirvana, let’s talk about true bliss before the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. With New Age adherents who emphasise being green, let’s communicate that we agree – and that we know the one who will make all things green/restored in the end, Jesus Christ. I bet not many believe Jesus wants to restore creation.

        Do you see the commonality, even at a simple level? I celebrate that Muslims believe in one God. Now, through relationship, the door can be opened to talk about who this one God is. I’m not sure I’d personally term it that we need to ‘grow other faiths’. But I can be respectful, gracious and compassionate, listening and learning from others. I’ve learned quite a bit in my life from non-Christians. Admitting such might open their hearts towards Christ.

        I do very much believe John 14:6, though I think we can only quote one verse for so long. Jesus sat with a Samaritan woman (Samaritans had weird worship perspectives), but he still said, ‘You worship what you do not know.’ Jesus calls out to a Gentile centurion saying that he had faith greater than all Israel (those identified as ‘God’s people’). There are connection points with those not yet full followers of Jesus.

        We need to make the good news known. And we have a big job ahead of us. But perhaps we can do it out of relationship, mutual learning, considering things we might not have considered before, rather than doing evangelism projects. We have a Christian mess to clean up in the world. Thankfully God is faithful. And I want to rectify some things. But I think we do need to consider rethinking some aspects of how we interact with others, all that we might reach them with the true Christ.

    • Good stuff, as usual. That quote by Jeff Dunn immediately reminded me of the lyrics to a song I love hearing on KLove radio, “Jesus, Friend of Sinners”. There’s a line that says. “Nobody knows what we’re for only what we’re against when we judge the wounded. What if we put down our signs crossed over the lines and loved like You did?” The only people and actions that Jesus outwardly condemned were those perpetrated by “religious leaders” as being “good things”. He showed that their “good things” were pretentious dead acts driven by pride and greed. Sin (moral sin) was understood as a product of human imperfection and always FORGIVEN, not condemned, by Christ. All the world sees of Christians today is busybodies who want to tell everyone else how to live their lives “morally” while secretly having the same bad ethics and morals as everyone else.

      Love is the ONLY thing that will truly reach people for Christ. Fear and shame may cause a person to seek God, but only LOVE will draw them into a relationship with Him. That love HAS to come through us, His ambassadors. Loving someone isn’t yelling at them to “Stop sinning!” from across the street.

      (The rest of the lyrics can be found here: http://www.lyricsmode.com/lyrics/c/casting_crowns/jesus_friend_of_sinners.html)

      • And yet God’s love never trumps His truth & rightousness. (1 Cor. 13: 6) This is the great essence of God’s Law/Gospel! And surely St. Paul is the Apostle of the Heart Set Free, to quote F.F. Bruce. And with this the Law of God is fulfilled and met in Paul’s revelation ‘In Christ’! We simply must not loose the judical & forensic righteousness done alone by Christ!

  4. Scott,

    There may well be “a grain of truth” as you call it in other religions. And I really don’t see anything wrong with taking any commonalities we see and building from there as you are talking about. So long, that is, as we remember that all of these other religions are lacking the Truth–Jesus.

    And that is where I see the problem with an approach like McLaren’s. He seems to take all religions and sycretize them as all being something valuable and “worth growing”. And I simply can not see that any of them have any eternal value or are worth growing if they leave out the One that said we are already condemned if we do not believe in Him.

    I realize you aren’t really “going there” with him in this. But as I said before, it really concerns me to see this man promoted as he is by you and by others. People do tend to soak in what they read and it does tend to have an effect. He is pushing what I believe to be some very dangerous ideas here and elsewhere. How many folks reading his stuff are not only picking up what may be harmless in itself, but are also being profoundly affected by the much more radical thoughts coming through?

      • I hope and pray that all of us are wise and diserning enough to not be taken in by dangerous ideas and philosophies ourselves.

        But beyond that, I also hope and pray that we all be wise and discerning enough that we not guilty of causing others to stumble or be drawn away from the faith by the people and reading material that we recommend and promote.

        Thanks for listening to my concerns and for your gracious responses. I really appreciate that! That is not the way it always is out there these days.

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