Bigotry (a real burden for the mankind)
All false religions are bigoted. The members of false religions, at least those of them which take seriously their religion, love only members of their own religion or people which they want to convert.
This nasty behaviour you find among Catholics, Muslims, Anabaptists, Mormons, Jehovah’s Witnesses, false Protestants, etc.
The problem is that the false religions regard grace as their PROPERTY. As soon as you have joined their religion, you participate in infinite grace which dispenses you from correct behaviour in daily life.
Let us take the Islam as an example:
Sura Al-Fatiha (Sura 1):
1 In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful.
2 Praise be to Allah, Lord of the Worlds,
3 The Beneficent, the Merciful.
4 Master of the Day of Judgment,
5 Thee (alone) we worship; Thee (alone) we ask for help.
6 Show us the straight path,
7 The path of those whom Thou hast favoured; Not the (path) of those who earn Thine anger nor of those who go astray.
The first Sura sounds even Christian (Allah is called merciful), but let us consider that this is not the only Sura of the Koran.
The whole context of the Koran makes it clear that the first Sura is related only to Muslim believers. Allah is merciful and gracious only towards Muslims or people which want to convert to Islam.
This bigotry could be endured if Islam would mean love and righteousness in daily life (a true Christian shall be full of love and righteousness to everybody, independent from belief, color, nationality, status, etc. in daily life). Regretably, a good Muslim is yet a Muslim which keeps the 5 Pillars of Islam, independent from practical love and righteousness:
– Faith or belief in the Oneness of God and the finality of the prophethood of Muhammad;
– Establishment of the daily prayers;
– Concern for and almsgiving to the needy;
– Self-purification through fasting;
– The pilgrimage to Makkah for those who are able.
The 5 Pillars of Islam have not much to do with righteousness, excepted almsgiving (whereby, I would like to know if a Muslim would give alms to a poor Christian, or if he rather would regard his poverty as a curse of Allah).
The mean trick of all these is that you become a participant of grace yet by keeping the 5 Pillars, independent from your daily behaviour. You may think like this (if you are a Muslim): I have tried to convert my workmate to Islam and keeping the 5 Pillars of Islam, but he refuses. He is now under the wrath of Allah who will finally throw him into hell. Why should I love this nasty disbeliever, which is not loved by Allah? Why should I give him any good hints and advices? Why should I talk with him? Why should I be concerned about his security? Why should I help him if he is in need? Allah doesn’t love this infidel individual; hence, I am allowed to hate him too.
The same attitude have got Catholics, Anabaptists, Mormons, false Protestants, etc.
They keep certain rituals of their belief, and through that they are participants of infinite grace, which allows them to treat their infidel fellow human beings, which they regard as disbelievers, very ill. They feel not obliged to show love and righteousness to their fellow human beings.
How works a true Christian in contrast:
A Christian knows that at Judgement Day he will get judged according to his works. Only if he has lived a life of love and righteousness, he will finally enter heaven. A Christian loves everybody, independent from belief, color, nationality, status, etc. He loves people even if they are no Christians, and even if they don’t want to become Christians. A true Christian doesn’t regard God’s grace as his property, but shares it with his fellow human beings. The Christian regards always himself as that one who is required by God to behave correctly. A Christian oversees the sins of his fellow human beings and behaves friendly and kindly despite their sins (of course, if people harm one another, the Christian has to intervene and to stop the wrongdoer).
Yet, a true Christian will hold on to the truth and confess/profess it to everybody:
The gospel: God, the Father, delivered God, the Son, for our sins and raised him from the dead for our justification.
The man who believes that and gets baptized (or remembers his infant baptism) will receive the power of the Holy Spirit, which makes him able to love his fellow human beings and to behave righteous.