It’s moving time again in the Methodist Church. In my current ciruit we have said goodbye to our Super Rev Bruce Thompson. I always find goodbyes difficult. Any relationship that is worth something must cause some degree of pain when a forced seperation occurs. Bruce has been a good friend to me as well as being my boss. We did not see eye to eye on everything but this never became a problem for us.
I am sometimes disturbed by the way the church doesn’t seem to like to ever say it disagrees with anyone. Are we allowed to say that we think someone is just wrong about something? Of course we are encouraged to think this way in a post-modern world. I like many things about post-modernism but I don’t like the way we can’t now say that something is wrong. We have to simply say that we are all equally right or all equally wrong – it all depends on your perspective. This is true for some things – e.g. art, literature, films, etc. Whether such things are good or bad is all down to perspective and personal choice but I can’t accept this is true for other things. Mathematics for instance. Say I have two pound coins in my hand and I say that means I have two pounds is not a matter for personal preference. Saying I have three or ten pounds would be wrong.
There are some things we can say about people that are a matter of personal choice e.g. they are funny, or attractive. But other things are not e.g. they are 6 feet tall, have brown hair, etc.
The same is true of God and religion. Some things are a matter of personal preference e.g. the way we pray, the words we use to express God, but some things are not e.g. whether or not Jesus is God. Of course it is a matter of personal choice whether we believe it or not but either it is true that Jesus is God or it is not true. So for a Christian to say that they believe other religions are wrong about Jesus is not in itself wrong – as some want to claim. Isn’t this what other religions say about Christians anyway?
But, to come back to my main point, it should be fine to say that someone is wrong but still be friends with them.