Modern day America has become a melting pot not only of nationalities, ethnic groups and race, but also of various religions. And religious tolerance is fast being transformed into accommodation. Perhaps this is true of other nations as well.
To tolerate is merely to agree that someone of a different religion has a right under a nation’s constitutional laws to believe and practice their religion as they choose, within the constraints of that nation’s laws. To accommodate is to make special allowances which not only tolerate, but also enable and enfold them into our own fellowship and worship with their own beliefs intact.
In Cordova, Tennessee, a Christian church has gone beyond the tolerance of a congregation of Muslims and is actually accommodating their worship. The church has rearranged the interior of their building so that Muslims can come in to pray, even to making it possible for them to face Mecca when they kneel.
It is one thing to be socially friendly to those who do not share our faith, but something entirely different to partner with whose who explicitly oppose our faith in our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
Jesus specifically said in Luke 11:23, “He who is not with me is against me; and he who does not gather scatters.” (NASB) And Paul made Jesus’ point even more clear in 2 Corinthians 6:14-7:1.
“Do not be bound together with unbelievers; for what partnership have righteousness and lawlessness, or what fellowship has light with darkness? Or what harmony has Christ with belial, or what has a believer in common with an unbeliever? Or what agreement has the temple of God with idols? For we are the temple of the living God; just as God has said.”
“‘I will dwell with them and walk among them; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people. Therefore, come out from their midst and be separate,’ says the Lord. ‘And do not touch what is unclean; and I will welcome you. And I will be a Father to you, and you shall be sons and daughters to Me.’ Says the Lord Almighty.”
“Therefrore, having these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all defilement of flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.” (NASB)
Jesus Christ drew a line in the sand concerning all of this when He said, “I am the way, the truth and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me.” John 14:16 (NASB)
Can we be friends with a Muslim or a Hindu or a person from any other Christless religion?
Yes, so long as we are not called on to compromise our commitment to the principles of the above passages, and so long as we remember that everyone outside our faith is to be looked upon as a mission field and not a partner in the defilement of our faith.