“You can laugh at Christianity, you can mock it and ridicule it. But it works. It changes lives. I should say Jesus Christ changes lives. Christianity is not a religion; it’s not a system; it’s not an ethical idea; it’s not a psychological phenomenon. It’s a person. If you trust Christ, start watching your attitudes and actions because Jesus Christ is in the business of changing lives.”
― Josh McDowell, More Than a Carpenter
If you are a Christian you know many people have criticized Christianity and believers in Jesus as being too narrow-minded because we preach that Jesus is the only way to salvation. “What about all the other religions of the world”, they say, “How can your way be the only way?”
Well good question, Jesus himself declared that He was, in fact, God in the flesh.
I and the Father are one. (John 10:30, NASB)
He who has seen Me has seen the Father… (John 14:9b, NASB)
Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.” (John 14: 6, NLT)
Jesus himself declared he is the way and that no one can come to the Father except through him. So for us Christians, there are no any other options. We preach that salvation is through faith in His sacrificial death on Calvary that we can receive salvation from our sins.
Jesus claimed to be God. We have to judge his statements about himself as either true or false. Read what Josh McDowell wrote in More Than a Carpenter;
“I’m ready to accept Jesus as a great moral teacher, but I don’t accept His claim to be God.’ That is the one thing we must not say. A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic—on a level with the man who says he is a poached egg—or else he would be the Devil of Hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God: or else a madman or something worse.”
So Jesus was either a madman, a liar, a myth, a devil or He really was — and is — the Son of God.
Aren’t All Religions The Same?
Some people believe that all the religions are basically the same. That simply is not true. Christians, Jews, and Muslims believe in a personal God who has revealed Himself to man. Buddhists and Hindus believe God is impersonal and unknowable. God cannot be both personal and impersonal, both knowable and unknowable, both cannot be true.
Christianity is also different from all other religions. Read what Josh McDowell writes below:
“This is what God has done for us: He has said, “I forgive you.” But he paid the price for the forgiveness himself through the Cross. It’s a payment that Buddha, Muhammad, Confucius, or any other religious or ethical leader cannot offer. No one can pay the price by “just living a good life.” I know it sounds exclusive to say it, but we must say it simply because it is true: There is no other way but Jesus.”
― Josh McDowell, More Than a Carpenter
All other religions are based on man’s efforts to reach God. These religions teach that man must somehow perform righteous acts or perform some religious service to be good enough to merit saving. In order to be saved a person must do something worthy of salvation. Or they must visit some religious shrine or temple.
But in all of this, the righteousness is based on the religious activity of the man or woman. It seems in all other religious systems except for Christianity, a spiritual scale, with all of the sins they have committed on one side and all of the righteous deeds on the other. If the righteousness outweighs the sin then maybe they will be saved. The person never really knows where they stand in these other religions. They could rightfully wonder have they been good enough? Have they prayed enough? Have they worked hard enough to earn enough righteous points needed to offset their sins?
But the Bible teaches that man is a sinner and could never earn salvation by his own activities
The Bible says, “No one is righteous—not even one.” (Rom. 3:10, NLT)
For all have sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard. (Rom. 3:23, NLT)
We are all infected and impure with sin. When we display our righteous deeds, they are nothing but filthy rags. (Is. 64:6a, NLT)
The apostle Paul among others in the Bible makes it clear that salvation is available only through the sacrificial offering of Jesus upon the cross of Calvary. Jesus took on himself all the sins of the world. Jesus paid the price for sin for everyone.
God made Christ, who never sinned, to be the offering for our sin so that we could be made right with God through Christ. (2 Cor. 5:21, NLT)
Jesus lived a sinless life. So He was the only one who could pay the price and take away the sins of all people who ever lived. He took them upon himself on the cross. He was the lamb who was slain, he took away the sins of the world.
In Christianity salvation comes only through the grace of God toward man, and it can only be received by faith and not by any good deed.
For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast. (Eph. 2:8-9, NKJV)
No matter how good you are; no matter how religious you are; no matter how much you meditate; no matter how much you pray; no matter what you do for God, you can never be good enough, or holy enough to earn salvation.
Any plan to earn salvation based on human effort is doomed to failure. Tthe Bible tells us salvation has been made available to us because Jesus Christ bore our sins on the cross.
For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. (John 3:16, NKJV)
All we have to do is just believe and receive what Jesus did for us. God has prepared everything for us to receive salvation; all we have to do is repent and believe.
Receive the Gift
Jesus proclaimed himself to be the Son of God, the Savior of the World. Jesus said, “follow me”, now what will you decide? Will you choose to believe and follow Jesus? Jesus said he is “the way, the truth, and the life — no one can come to the Father, except through Me.”
What will you do? Will you take the step of faith? Will you trust Jesus to be your Lord and Savior?
Put your life in His hands now! Then do what He asks you to do. He is alive and he will lead you if you will follow. His yoke, teaching, is easy and His burden is light. It boils down to love. So how does it work? Believe in Jesus, honestly openly confess your sins to Him and receive His complete forgiveness. Jesus promises to give you a gift. Jesus said in John 10:10, I have come to give you life in abundance. Recieve his gift of life today.
If you want to pray a prayer of Salvation click here.