For the whole history of the Church, Christians have shared space with religious ‘others’ – not simply people who don’t believe anything, but people who follow another religious path with its own ideas and experiences of the sacred. How have Christians understood their relationship to adherents of other faiths? Where do the world’s religions come from? What do peoples of other faiths believe? How does God’s work in the world relate to the continuing existence of other religions? How can we as Christians best engage people of other faiths? This class will introduce basic categories that have guided Christians in understanding non-Christian religions. We will then briefly consider some of the world’s major religions, Judaism, Islam, Hinduism and Buddhism, to get a sample of what these faiths have to say and how we can listen well. Three guiding aims will be to grow in love for our neighbors, be ready to learn, and increase our capacity to share.
Michael Graves (PhD, Hebrew Union College) teaches in the Department of Biblical and Theological Studies at Wheaton College. His research and teaching focus on the reception history of the Old Testament in early Christianity, Judaism, and Islam.
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