Are all religions the same? Can you get into Heaven on your own merits? Does God play favourites when it comes to world religions? Aren’t all religions the same? In our pluralistic society the list of questions could go on forever. It seems everyone you meet has a different view about God and His role in our lives. And in our politically correct world, no one wants to say one faith is preferred to another, or that anyone’s opinion about God could be mistaken. As one friend told me, “you believe what you want and I’ll believe what I want.”
But, is that how we really come to understand what is truth? Should our redemption hang on a whim or what we think we know about God? Common sense tells us if two people are adding three plus three and one gets six and the other seven, one of the answers has to be wrong. When it comes to faith in God everyone with divergent views can’t all be right. Jesus told the disciples that He was leaving them to go to the Father, “to prepare a place for you.” Jesus goes on to elaborate, “And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. You know the way to the place where I am going.” John 14:3, 4 The disciples, being the disciples, ask God, how do we get to where you are going? Jesus answer is one of the great passages of Scripture, “I am the way, and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” John 14: 6
Let’s think about this for a moment. Jesus claims He is the way, the truth and the life because salvation is only found through Him. Paul tells us in Romans 5:8, “But God demonstrated His own love for us in this. While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Paul makes it clear there is no other way to eternity than through Jesus and His sacrifice. It is through Jesus that we have life, “Since we have now been justified by His blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through Him!” Romans 5:9
We can’t work our way into Heaven, and we can’t sneak into Heaven. Instead, we have to enter through the door, and that door is Jesus. Here is the amazing part of the Gospel; entrance into Paradise is free because the price has been paid in full. Christianity is unique in having a Savior God who sacrifices Himself on our behalf. God doesn’t care what we have done in our past or how messed up we were. He doesn’t hold our sins, our failures, our mistakes or our past against us. He takes us like we are and wraps His arms around us and holds us close. In one of the clips in the Check it Out section, When the Storm Comes, the narrator says when the storms of life hit you, where is God? Then he answers, He’s right behind you with His arms wrapped around you to hold you secure. Yes, we can all have our personal thoughts about God and our own beliefs, but we can’t escape Jesus words, “I am the way, and the truth and the life.” He doesn’t say I am the way that you want to go, and the truth as you want to think it, and the life that you want to live. He is much more than that. He is the bread of life, the door to safety, the light of the world, the good shepherd, the resurrection, and the way. He is the God of the Universe that says, take my hand and I will lead you home because I love you.
Next post will be “I am the true vine”.