To The Three Faiths Forum
Thank you for your congratulations on my OBE.
The honor belongs to the whole community.
You called your organization 'The Three Faiths Forum'.
Three Faiths? What Three Faiths? I asked the Rabbi, "Do
the Christians worship the same God that we worship?"
"Yes!" he said "And Moslims?" I asked,
to which he replied "Likewise"
We are in fact one faith, worshipping the One True God,
with three denominations and hundreds of sub-divisions.
In their enthusiasm, some followers have erroneously given
supernatural attributes to their leaders but I like to ignore
all these and take the lowest common denominator by calling
all these leaders "God's Missionaries". All the
followers of the One True God should be regarded and treated
as equal in every way.
Monotheism started with Adam some 8,000 years ago. At the
end of the last Ice Age someone (let us call him Adam) who
lived in Eden (in Aden where else?) discovered the wild
wheat and invented agriculture which was the start of our
present civilization. His descendents fanned out in 2 directions,
one northwards towards Canaan which ended with Malkhisedek,
King of Salem (Jerusalem) and Priest of EI Elion, and the
other direction was around the Arabian coastline towards
Mesopotamia where Abraham lived and then traveled to Canaan
to meet Malkiisedek. Abraham attained a letter of introduction
to meet Pharaoh to try to convert him to worship The One
True God. He failed. The rest is written history.
I consider Adam, Noah, Abar, Abraham, Malkhisedek, Moses,
Jesus and Mohammed as God's missionaries, who promoted the
knowledge of god to mankind.
THE ONE FAITH FORUM
To carry the above idea a step further we should start
a new organization to be called THE ONE FAITH FORUM to highlight
the unity of all the tree faiths and to downgrade all the
differences between them.
It is said that if you receive an unwelcome message- "don't
shoot the messenger". Likewise I say, if a new leader
promotes a new religious movement- don't worship the missionary.
We take only the common denominator of all missionaries
and leave the exaggeration in their status to the imagination
and belief of their respective followers. Robert Dangoor
puts it all in a nutshell. He says "god unites, religion
divides", and therefore the trouble is with religion
that tends to divide instead of uniting.
The Three Faiths Forum explained:
The heading "Three Faiths Forum'' is primarily shorthand
for putting on record that we promote trialogue between
Muslims, Christians and Jews, who although warship one god,
do so in different ways. All three faiths recognise Abraham,
Moses and other Jewish prophets. Christians in addition
recognise Jesus as the messiah and Islam recognise the Jewish
prophets and Jesus as a prophet rather than the messiah
and Mohammad as the last prophet. Nevertheless, as you rightly
say, the three Abrahamic Monotheistic faiths have much in
common and that is why we promote trialogue between Muslims,
Christians and Jews.
Sidney L Shipton OBE
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