In my diary there is a list of religious festivals and today (20th July) is shown as the first day of Ramadan, which is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar, and the month in which the Quran was “revealed” in the 7th century. This is the month that Muslims spend fasting during the daylight hours from dawn to dusk.
My diary also shows festivals and dates for a number of different religions: Christian-Western, Christian-Eastern Orthodox, Islamic, Hindu, Buddhist, Sikh, Jewish and Chinese. Quite an eclectic mix! And most churchmen today would probably welcome such religious diversity.
In her essay “Religious Diversity: Some Implications for Monotheism”, Rita M Gross, an international writer, states that “many people value the feeling that their religion is indeed superior to others and regard such religious chauvinism as a necessary component of religious commitment, or even a virtue to be cultivated among the faithful. In their official theologies, most religions have dealt with religious diversity only in a cursory or inadequate fashion. Frequently, religions have encouraged mutual hostility by teaching that foreign religions are not only different, but also demonic, or at least inferior.”
However, if we believe the Bible, we will read that God says: “… the LORD Himself is God in heaven above and on the earth beneath; there is no other” (Deuteronomy 4:39), and: “Now see that I, even I, am He, And there is no God besides Me” (Deuteronomy 32:39), and: “I am the LORD, and there is no other; There is no God besides Me” (Isaiah 45:5). There are many other references, but suffice to say that the God of the Bible is very specific on this matter.
In 1 Corinthians 14:33, God states that He “is not the author of confusion”, and my diary contains a page that is a litany of confusion when it prints out all of these various religious festivals. As if that isn’t enough, professing Christianity is, likewise, a place where there is much confusion and even contention.
The true Church of God that Jesus founded on the day of Pentecost nearly two thousand years ago, is where the true festivals can be found. There will come a time, after Christ’s return, when any diary will only contain the true Holy Days, and confusion will be gone. I am sure that all of God’s people pray for that time to come.
And then religious chaos will be no more!