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East Meets West

In a bookstore near my home, I inquired about the books in the religion section. The clerk, twenty-something with a butterfly tattoo on her arm, explained, "We sell a lot of books on Eastern thought and spirituality, not as many on Western religion." Then, as if correcting herself, she said, "Not as many on Christianity. I guess that is the only religion based on Western ideals."

I realized again how we, the church, have painted ourselves into a corner.

In May I toured the MTV studios at Times Square with a group of young pastors. After we bumped into singer Jewel, veejay Jesse, and rockologist Matt Pinfield, some executives shared that in a recent survey of MTV viewers, 99 percent said they believe in God.

Record numbers want to know God, yet Christianity is seen as the religion of the West in a postmodern world that is re-embracing Eastern thought. Yet Christianity is rooted in the East. We worship a savior who spoke an Eastern language, whose birth was signified by a star seen ...

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