Why Did Jesus, Moses, the Buddha, and Mohammed Cross the Road?
Christian Identity in a Multi-Faith World
By Brian McLaren
Published by Jericho Books
About the Book
When four religious leaders walk across the road, it's not the beginning of a joke. It's the start of one of the most important conversations in today's world.
Can you be a committed Christian without having to condemn or convert people of other faiths? Is it possible to affirm other religious traditions without watering down your own?
In his most important book yet, widely acclaimed author and speaker Brian McLaren proposes a new faith alternative, one built on "benevolence and solidarity rather than rivalry and hostility." This way of being Christian is strong but doesn't strong-arm anyone, going beyond mere tolerance to vigorous hospitality toward, interest in, and collaboration with the other.
Blending history, narrative, and brilliant insight, McLaren shows readers step-by-step how to reclaim this strong-benevolent faith, challenging us to stop creating barriers in the name of God and learn how affirming other religions can strengthen our commitment to our own. And in doing so, he invites Christians to become more Christ-like than ever before.
What People are Saying
"[Brian McLaren] actually believes that Jesus and his followers can change the world. This book is no exception —he starts with a joke but quickly you realize just how serious he is about doing what Jesus teaches us to do. Helpful, timely, and really, really inspiring."
—Rob Bell, author of Love Wins
"Brian McLaren is at his best in this book —pastoral, practical, challenging and thoughtful. As always, he speaks the right words at the right moment, meeting us where we are, but helping us see just around the bend. For those who want to engage in productive interfaith dialog while maintaining a strong Christian identity, WHY DID JESUS, MOSES, THE BUDDHA, AND MOHAMMED CROSS THE ROAD? is an invaluable resource. It will make you think, yes. But better yet, it will make you a better Christian and a better neighbor."
—Rachel Held Evans, blogger, author of Evolving in Monkey Town and A Year of Biblical Womanhood
"Why bother to read this book? Within decades the American religious landscape has been transformed by the exponential growth of Hinduism, Buddhism and Islam. Yet, religious pluralism and freedom is under siege, threatened by exclusivism, intolerance and extremism, at home and abroad. This engaging and compelling guidebook, written by one of America's most influential religious thinkers and spiritual teachers, is groundbreaking, redefining religious pluralism for the 21st century. It is a "must read" for Christians and followers of other faiths or no faith."
—John L. Esposito, University Professor and Founding Director of the Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding, Georgetown University and author of The Future of Islam
"A Call to every person of faith to truly examine and explore not only the TEXT but the CONTEXT...A Call to love, compassion, social justice, friendships and the celebration of the universal spirit that connects us all. A must read to enable us to stop contributing to the creation of a senseless environment of separation.
—Soraya Deen, Muslim Mother, Peace activist, Inspirational Speaker, TV Host and author of PEACE MATTERS: 33 Powerful Actions all Mothers Can Take to Raise Peace-Conscious Children
"Brian McLaren is the most creative Christian theologian and spiritual teacher writing and preaching today in the U.S., yet his universal message is as relevant to people of all faiths and none. As a Jewish theologian, I welcome this important contribution to showing the path through which all religions can become an emancipatory force for human liberation."
—Rabbi Michael Lerner, editor, Tikkun, chair of the Interfaith Network of Spiritual Progressives, Author of Jewish Renewal, Spirit Matters, The Politics of Meaning, and The Left Hand of God
"With his characteristic wit and passion, Brian McLaren charts a way through the twenty-first century's most difficult issue: How can people of different religions maintain their own faiths and yet respect the dignity of all? Join Brian as he takes you on a journey to discover a benevolent Christian faith based on hospitality instead of hostility. It will change your life. And it might just change the world."
—Diana Butler Bass, author of Christianity After Religion: The End of Church and the Birth of a New Spiritual Awakening.
About the Author