God is a not a christian: Desmond Tutu book reflections

I’ve been informally doing a ‘south africa’ series where I read a bunch of books about the history of South Africa and the lives and views of their most prominent leaders. I started with Mandela, went to Biko and I am now on Tutu. I started reading Tutu’s book with the Dalai Lama 

which was a beautiful read and a beautiful example of how interfaith methods can improve well being and perspective. Then I came across this book

And I began to see why this man is so revered. He is not only a church leader, but a leader for humanity and for God. His argument for God not being a Christian echoes some of the sentiments from my last post and he puts it much better than I could.

He says that while it is true that Jesus told is no one gets to the father without him, we should remember as Christians that Jesus is inseparable from God’s word and can be reached through a mutiltude of means, not just through its physical incarnation.

I have often heard Christians say ‘This person doesn’t know Jesus Christ, therefore they are not for heaven, they do not know God’. Tutu in his book reminds us that Moses, who gave us the law, had never met Jesus, but he knew God. He was Jewish And had no relationship with Jesus. What Moses met as God, was a burning bush. Similarly, Abraham did not meet Jesus, but he knew God. All the Jewish prophets of the old testaments had never seen Jesus in physical form or heard his words as his, but they received him and his message through other means.

This was a great reminder that Jesus is more than his incarnation and that God interacts with people and sends his message in different ways – and so we have no right to tell people their experiences of God are wrong or not genuine based on our perceived differences.

The truth is that God is not a Christian, or a Muslim or Hindu or anything else that we have come up with to define our relationships to Him. God is just God and everything in between.


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