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"Different Books, Common Word: Baptists and Muslims"
When the Baptist Center for Ethics’ executive director, Robert Parham, spoke at the annual meeting of the Islamic Society of North America in 2008, he recalled a story about a young school girl who approached a Baptist missionary in Lebanon, asking "Are you a Christian?"
The Baptist missionary woman replied that she loved Jesus. The Lebanese school girl sighed with relief. "Oh good," she said. "I was afraid that you were one of those murdering Christians."
Noting that there are many different types of Christians, Parham said that too many Baptist Christians were less concerned with love for neighbor and too concerned with doctrinal purity and political conquest. He noted that some wrap the American flag around the cross of Christ. Others place military-camouflaged covers on Bibles. Still others say hateful things about Islam.
He said that while these Baptists speak loudly, they do not speak for all Baptists. Picking up on “A Common Word,” a letter from Islamic religious leaders to Christian leaders, Parham said that Baptists and Muslims shared a common word about love for God and love for neighbor.
He proposed that one way to share a common ground was to have a resource page on EthicsDaily.com where Baptists and Muslims could quickly find online material that educates and facilitates dialogue between two members of the Abraham faith traditions. This Web page is the fulfillment of that proposal. Here readers will find resources that will advance the common good between Baptist Christians and Muslims.
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