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True Tolerance: Faithfully Serving the God of Truth

Дата публикации: 2018-05-22 00:53

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But what about tolerance? What''s wrong with the non-judgmental acceptance of all perspectives? What''s wrong depends on what one is being tolerant about. Remember the opening sayings about taste and truth? "About matters of taste, there is no disputing" and "About matters of truth, we should engage in dispute."

The Christian religion - Religious Tolerance

An ancient maxim reads, "About matters of taste, there is no disputing," while another one advises, "About matters of truth, we should engage in dispute."

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On the one hand, we hear much in public discourse about the need for tolerance, usually presented as the non-judgmental acceptance of all perspectives. On the other hand, those who stand for truth are often branded as narrow-minded, intolerant and judgmental. Unfortunately, this is often the case when it comes to Christianity. All too often Christian beliefs are said to be matters of faith, not matters of truth. As a result, Christians are told tolerance must override faith. After all, with so many religious and non-religious perspectives in the world, isn''t tolerance to be desired over dispute? Are Christians really so prideful as to think they have the corner on truth in certain areas?

Can tolerance pass a worldview test? Since tolerance is often applied to morality, let''s briefly explore moral relativism in relation to this question. Moral relativists claim that whatever one happens to believe is true or right for them. Morality becomes completely subjective. What''s wrong with this approach? If moral relativism is accepted then nothing can be considered wrong, but we know some things are inherently wrong, which is why we have a legal system and criminals serving time. There are many other problems with moral relativism, but this one is enough to destroy it as a viable system.

Robert Velarde is author of The Heart of Narnia (NavPress) , Conversations with . Lewis (InterVarsity Press) and Inside The Screwtape Letters (Baker Books). He studied philosophy of religion at Denver Seminary and is pursuing graduate studies in philosophy at Southern Evangelical Seminary.

When it comes to moral matters, truth also applies. For instance, either abortion is wrong or it is not. Either a fetus is actually a human being or it is not. Truth in religion also applies. Either Jesus is Lord or he is not. Either God exists or He does not. In these and other questions, whatever corresponds to reality is the truth.

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Being tolerant is more than acceptable under certain circumstances, especially when it comes to taste. Authors Francis Beckwith and Gregory Koukl demonstrate this well in their book Relativism (Baker Books, 6998) where they discuss liking a certain flavor of ice cream, adding, "Tastes are personal. They''re private. They''re individual. If you didn''t like butter pecan and favored chocolate instead, it would be strange to say that you were wrong. You should not be faulted, it seems, for having different subjective tastes about desserts than someone else. What if my claim was not about flavors, though, but about numbers? If I say the sum of two plus two is four, I''m making a different sort of claim than stating my taste in ice cream."

But how does truth apply to the Bible and, specifically, to Christianity? Below are eight relevant points, offered by Christian philosopher Douglas Groothuis:

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