Learning about other people’s basic beliefs is key to quality understanding and interaction. Most religious backgrounds and experiences have strong family, ethnic, or cultural ties. This is just as true in Judeo-Christian roots as well.
When we work to discover shared humanity with people who believe differently than we do, the words and works of Jesus become less about religion and more about connection. The fact that Jesus continues to speak to people in a deeply personal way in any and every decade is amazing. And when the Law and the prophets are weighed together with the Gospels and the Letters, it is very clear that what happened in Israel in 33 AD was orchestrated by the Great Composer Himself.
When speaking to someone with a variant faith from our own, it is key to follow Peter the disciple’s well-learned maxim:
“but set apart Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to give an account to everyone who asks you to give an answer for the hope that is in you, yet (do this) with gentleness and respect…”
We share things in common with every human being. And we have even more in common with noble men and women who are seeking the One True God – from whatever religious roots they have emerged.