Christian Exclusivity

The term “Christian Exclusivity” refers mainly to God. Is God a Christian? Is God *only* a Christian? Does he/she care only about Christians? If you’re an Exclusivist, the answers are a resounding “yes.” R. Kirby Godsey recently published a book called Is God a Christian?: Creating a Community of Conversation in which he argues against the Exclusive perspective:

… we Christians have to come to grips with the reality that there is not much that appears exclusive about the mind or the actions of Christ. Beggars, lepers, adulterers, and Samaritans were all welcome. Jesus broadened the circle of God’s embrace. Insofar as the Christian religion has come to offer itself as the exclusive bag of answers to life’s most difficult questions or a proprietary window through which the light of God shines on the human race, Christianity has simply become one more world religion competing for center stage.

Brian McLaren has written a  review of the book where he helps to explain the dangers of closed mind/faith:

When Godsey speaks against Christian exclusivity—which he does passionately and often, he doesn’t mean that Christians should love Jesus less. He isn’t arguing that Christians should dump Jesus as their exclusive commitment and “date around.”

He’s saying that to truly and deeply love Jesus, to be rightly and fully committed to his message and mission, Christians must resist the temptation to let the boundaries of their own religion define the circle of God’s embrace. Christians must do this, not as an act of compromise with pluralism, but as an act of faithfulness to Jesus, who proclaimed in word and deed that God’s love does not push anyone outside its infinite circumference.

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