As I was pouring over the various news clips this morning about Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iran, Iraq, Israel, and so forth, a thought occurred to me.
Monotheism took over in Israel when Josiah, the King of 7th Century B.C. Israel, stamped out worship of any other god except Yahweh. That, by the way, was by force–total force.
However, monotheism did not ultimately take hold until St. Paul sold Christianity to non-Christians in the 1st Century A.D. under the concept of universal brotherhood, an idea that no faith had offered prior to that. Early development of Islam embraced that same all-inclusive theme, regardless of what appears to be occuring today.
The underlying fact is very simple: the greatest levels of growth in any religion occur when the religion is “inclusive,” even if that religion cannot understandably accept total religious relativism.
Our 21st Century monotheistic god may be a powerful God indeed, but He is far more powerful when He embraces the lesser included religion, be that religion Islam, Judaism or Christianity.
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