Religious hatred, conflict, etc.
Definitions of "religious tolerance."
Quotes on religious intolerance
Definition of "religious tolerance:"
we can discuss religious tolerance, we have to define it. Unfortunately, many religious terms have multiple -- often contradictory meanings. This term is no example.
Many definitions exist for "religious tolerance." Two
of the most common are:
- Religious tolerance is about beliefs. Some religious
conservatives equate religious tolerance as the acceptance of
religious pluralism. That is the belief that all
religions are equally valid within their own culture of origin. Religious
conservatives often believe in exclusivity -- that their religion is the
only "true" faith. and that all other faith traditions are in error. Thus, many
religious conservatives consider religious tolerance very negatively. Josh
McDowell and Bob Hostelter promote this definition in their book "The New
Tolerance: How a cultural movement threatens to destroy you, your faith and
your children." 1
- Religious tolerance is about civil rights: Others define
religious tolerance as a human rights issue. Religious tolerance means that
you favor extending religious freedom to people of all faith traditions, even
though you probably disagree with their validity of theiir beliefs and/or practices. In turn,
religious freedom means that a person can, without oppression or
Believe, worship and witness as they wish;
Practice freedom from belief, worship and
witnessing if they wish;
Change their beliefs or religious affiliation;
Within reasonable limits, proselytize others in order to convert others to their belief system, and/or
Associate with others to express their beliefs. 2
John Laursen's, "Religious Toleration: 'The Variety of Rites' from Cyrus to
Defoe," describes the history of religious tolerance over millennia and around
the world. 3
We use the second definition in this
essay and throughout the rest of this web site. That is, to be religiously tolerant, one must accept the rights of other people to hold religious beliefs that disagree with one's own. This can be difficult for religious conservatives who often believe that people with incorrect beliefs will spend eternity being tortured in Hell, and only those with correct beliefs will spend eternity in Heaven. These beliefs often motivate religious conservatives to proselytize persons that they regard as non-believers.
Quotations on religious intolerance:
|Anon: An Email to this web site: "There is no such thing as 'religious tolerance' as far as God and Heaven is
concerned. We are either 'in' Christ or not."|
|Anon: Christian bumper sticker by Harbor House Gifts of Fullerton CA stating: "Truth, not
tolerance." The bumper sticker shows a clenched fist on the left side and a Christian cross on the right.|
|George H.W. Bush: (R) as Presidential candidate on 1987-AUG-27: "No, I don't know that Atheists should be
considered as citizens, nor should they be considered patriots. This is one nation under God."|
|Hillary Clinton: "In every religion, there are those who would drape themselves in the mantle of belief and faith
only to distort it's most sacred teachings -- [by] preaching intolerance and resorting to violence"|
|Benjamin Disraeli (1804-1881), former Prime Minister of England: "The Jews are a nervous people. Nineteen centuries
of Christian love have taken a toll."|
John Jay, the first Chief Justice of the
U.S. Supreme Court: "Providence has given to our people the choice of their rulers, and it is the duty of our Christian nation to
select and prefer Christians for their rulers."
|Bob Jones Jr., of Bob Jones
University, referring to the Roman Catholic Church:
"Romanism is a pagan counterfeit of the Christian religion, ancient paganism
and idolatry, claiming to be the church which Christ founded...The Roman
Church is not another Christian denomination. It is a satanic counterfeit, an
ecclesiastic tyranny over the souls of men, not to bring them to salvation but
to hold them bound in sin and to hurl them into eternal damnation."
|Federico Mayor, Director-general of
UNESCO (1987-1999) "It is intolerable that the world's religions
-- founded on the values of love and compassion -- should provide a
pretext for the expression of hatred and violence."|
|Josh McDowell, at a Youth for Christ
rally in 1994: "Tolerance is the worst roar of all,
including tolerance for homosexuals, feminists, and religions that
don't follow Christ." 1|
|Pat Robertson, Fundamentalist Christian minister, on
The 700 Club episode for 1991-JAN-14: "You say you're supposed to be nice to the Episcopalians and
the Presbyterians and the Methodists and this, that, and the other thing.
Nonsense. I don't have to be nice to the spirit of the Antichrist. I can love
the people who hold false opinions but I don't have to be nice to them."
|Adrian Rodgers prominent Evangelical teleminister: "Never, never, never join a movement that persecutes people
because of their faith."|
|Andrew Sandlin, writing for the Chalcedon Foundation, calls for
Christian believers to pray to God to exterminate those who think
differently from themselves: "God extends his grace to his people
(and mankind in general) when he destroys the wicked, because in
destroying the wicked, he is averting their evil works that so plague
God's children and mankind in general. When he maims and kills cultists
and theological liberals, he prevents the spread of heretical doctrine
that damns souls...God's judgment -- not his favor -- leads the world to
righteousness. We should petition God's judgment on the wicked because
judgment is a form of grace." 5|
Our web site has many more quotations on religious intolerance and
religious tolerance listed.
- Josh D. McDowell & Bob Hostetler, "The New Tolerance: How a Cultural
Movement Threatens to Destroy You, Your Faith, and Your Children,"
Tyndale House, (1998).
reviews or order this book safely from Amazon.com online book store
- Paraphrased, with changes, from Forum 18 at:
- John Laursen, "Religious Toleration: 'The Variety of Rites' from Cyrus to
Defoe," Palgrave Macmillan, (1999).
reviews or order this book
- Bob Jones, Jr., "Romanism and the Charismatic Movement: Because
they ignore the Word of God, both papists and charismatics are doing the
work of the devil," Faith for the Family, 1981, Bob Jones University,
- Andrew Sandlin, "Hatred for God's Enemies," at:
Copyright © 2006 to 2011 by Ontario Consultants on
Original publishing date: 2006-SEP-07
Latest update on: 201-OCT-22
Author. B.A. Robinson