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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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Faith and tolerance

They're critical in today's world

When my wife and I were in Jerusalem not long ago, we constantly witnessed the sounds and sights of religious diversity: a Muslim call to prayer, the bells of Christian churches, Jews praying at the Western Wall. Yet today one doesn’t need to go to Jerusalem to experience religious diversity. Increasingly throughout the U.S. we live and work among Christians, Jews, Muslims and others. Such diversity enriches our lives but also raises a difficult question: Can we be tolerant of other people’s beliefs and yet maintain a strong Christian faith?

To wrestle with this question we must remember the fundamental nature of faith itself. As Martin Luther has stressed, on our religious journeys we make use of knowledge and facts. Ultimately with the Spirit’s help, we arrive at our beliefs through faith.


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