ADVERTISING
 
Saturday, July 20   Sign in or Register
 
Evangelical Focus
 

 
ADVERTISING
 
 
FOLLOW US ON
  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Google +
  • Instagram
  • Soundcloud
 

Newsletter
Newsletter, sign up to receive all our News by email.
 

POLL
Society
Should Christians join social protests?



SEE MORE POLLS
 

 
TOP 10 MOST VIEWED



Marc Jost
 

Religion as a private matter is dangerous

And at a time when there are actually almost no taboos left in the media and intimate matters are reported on shamelessly, the commonly held understanding - that religion is a private matter - does seem rather out of kilter. Does personal religious faith have to be completely private, or would it be better if we talked about it much more?

FEATURES AUTHOR Marc Jost TRANSLATOR Nicky Seadon BERN 08 JANUARY 2015 13:10 h GMT+1
Bern Suisse Bern. / TIm Kelley (Flickr, CC)

What do income, faith and weight have in common? Correct, they are all regarded as taboo or the private matter of the Swiss. And we don’t ask about them. But at least the first two of these key words are always of incredible interest to the media whenever it smacks of a highly explosive situation, unrest or scandal.



I am rarely asked about my income, but horrifically high managers’ salaries are of interest and are – rightly – criticised. How heavy I am is of no interest to anyone but my doctor and my wife. I am scarcely ever addressed about my faith in a personal conversation; however, when the media report on me as a person, it is the religious side that is highly controversial, because it is not quite normal.



And at a time when there are actually almost no taboos left in the media and intimate matters are reported on shamelessly, the commonly held understanding - that religion is a private matter - does seem rather out of kilter. Does personal religious faith have to be completely private, or would it be better if we talked about it much more?



Talking about one’s personal religious faith makes sense, from my point of view, for the following reasons:



In a conversation about faith and religion, prejudices can be challenged and broken down. Mutual understanding can grow when we learn from our counterpart why they believe what they believe. And, in the end, such conversations can promote peace, if, rather than with hatred and rejection, the other viewpoint is met with understanding and respect.



At the same time, dialogue about faith is a contest between religions and worldviews. That is a good thing, as one’s own perception is challenged. And, where there is sincere and wholehearted effort, this leads closer to the truth, closer to reality.



Jesus says about himself: ‘I am the way, the truth and the life.’ Sometimes it seems to us perhaps easier to make such bold assertions taboo and not to bother our heads about them. I am however convinced that dialogue about faith can bring us closer to the truth and promotes good communal living. So, don’t falsely hold back!



 



Marc Jost is a swiss politician and general secretary of the Swiss Evangelical Alliance.


 

 


0
COMMENTS

    If you want to comment, or

 



 
 
YOUR ARE AT: - - - Religion as a private matter is dangerous
 
ADVERTISING
 
 
 
AUDIOS Audios
 
Ruth Valerio: A lifestyle that cares about creation Ruth Valerio: A lifestyle that cares about creation

Are Christians called to make a difference in environmental care? What has creation care to do with "loving our neighbours"? An interview with the Global Advocacy and Influencing Director of Tearfund.

 
Julia Doxat-Purser: 25 years of EEA office in Brussels Julia Doxat-Purser: 25 years of EEA office in Brussels

An interview with the socio-political representative of the European Evangelical Alliance about how evangelical Christians work at the heart of the European Union.

 
Lars Dahle: Nominal Christianity, a mission field for the church Lars Dahle: Nominal Christianity, a mission field for the church

An interview with Lars Dahle, of the Steering Committee of the Lausanne Movement Global Consultation on Nominal Christianity held in Rome.

 
Testimony: Wildfires near Athens Testimony: Wildfires near Athens

Nico Spies, a Christian worker in Athens, gives details about the wildfires in Greece.

 
PICTURES Pictures
 
IFES World Assembly: ‘Messengers of Hope’ IFES World Assembly: ‘Messengers of Hope’

Students, graduates and staff of the global evangelical student movement reflected together on how the books of Luke and Acts apply to today's universities.

 
Christians at work - the missing link in fulfilling the Great Commission Christians at work - the missing link in fulfilling the Great Commission

Photos of the Lausanne Movement Global Workplace Forum, celebrated in Manila.

 
European Freedom Network Bridge 2019 conference European Freedom Network Bridge 2019 conference

Images of the fifth EFN gathering. Experts, activists, counsellors and church leaders met in Pescara, Italy.

 
Glimpses of the ELF 2019 conference Glimpses of the ELF 2019 conference

Evangelical leaders from across Europe meet in Wisla (Poland) to network for mission in a range of fields. The vision is to renew the biblical church and evangelise Europe.

 
‘Small churches, big potential for transformation’ ‘Small churches, big potential for transformation’

Photos of the Spanish Evangelical Alliance’s annual gathering “Idea 2019”, in Murcia. Politicians and church leaders discussed about the role of minorities in society.

 
VIDEO Video
 
Practical ways to bring Christians from different generations together Practical ways to bring Christians from different generations together

What if young people were on church committees? asks David Hilborn, Principal of St John's College (UK).

 
Evangelical students from around the world gather in South Africa Evangelical students from around the world gather in South Africa

A short video summary of the International Fellowship of Evangelical Students (IFES) World Assembly, July 3-10.

 
GWF in Manila: “Kingdom building requires global collaboration” GWF in Manila: “Kingdom building requires global collaboration”

850 from 108 countries met for the Global Workplace Forum, June 25-29. The gathering was organised by the Lausanne Movement. “Every workplace is a place of ministry”.

 
Luis Palau arrives in Madrid for first overseas outreach since his diagnosis of cancer Luis Palau arrives in Madrid for first overseas outreach since his diagnosis of cancer
At the invitation of hundreds of churches in Spain, the Luis Palau Association are sharing the Good News of Jesus Christ in Madrid, June 15-23, 2019, through numerous outreach events and a 2-day family festival in the heart of the city.
 
What are the most important truths that Christians should seek to convey in a secular context? What are the most important truths that Christians should seek to convey in a secular context?

Espen Ottosen talks about the truths Christians should share with people who have little knowledge and/or many prejudices about Christian belief.  

 
 
Follow us on Soundcloud
Follow us on YouTube
 
 
WE RECOMMEND
 
PARTNERS
 

 
AEE
EVANGELICAL FOCUS belongs to Areópago Protestante, linked to the Spanish Evangelical Alliance (AEE). AEE is member of the European
Evangelical Alliance and World Evangelical Alliance.
 

Opinions expressed are those of their respective contributors and do not necessarily represent the views of Evangelical Focus.