In 2008, a poll by the Pew Research Group found that an astounding 57 percent of respondents who attended evangelical churches said that they believe many religions can lead to eternal life.
What does this number reveal?
I think it shows us two things: (1) the secular world is powerful and is drawing Christians away from the truth of God’s Word and (2) some of our churches are not doing a very good job of teaching that Jesus Christ is the only way to salvation.
In fact, if churches are preaching that there are other avenues to heaven other than Jesus, they are preaching a false and tragic doctrine.
As Acts 4:12 tells us, “Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved” (NKJV). We see here that salvation is through Christ, and Christ alone!
Such verses are not popular in the modern culture, but we must stand on God’s Word and proclaim it to a world that increasingly rejects the truth of the Gospel. That is our calling.
Why is it so important that we continue to assert the Risen Christ as the only way to heaven? Let’s look at four key reasons.
- Jesus Himself declared that He is the only way. Jesus proclaimed Himself to be the Son of God (Matthew 16:16-17) and verified that He is the “door to heaven” (John 10:9). In probably the most definitive proclamation, He stated in John 14:6, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” We can never compromise the legitimacy of Jesus being the singular pathway to eternal life.
- The Bible is our source for ultimate truth. John 17:17 says, “… Your word is truth.” If the Bible is indeed true, as it proclaims itself to be, then we must make it our daily guidepost and piloting Light (Psalm 119:105). While the world wants to embrace all “truths,” we must never be afraid or ashamed to proclaim the Gospel as the only Truth that will last through the ages (Romans 1:16).
- If there are other ways to heaven, the Bible is rendered moot. Fox News host Bill O’Reilly has called it “disturbing” that people advance the biblical teaching that Jesus is the only way to eternal life. Mr. O’Reilly does a lot of good things, but he is tragically wrong on this issue. The Bible is the revealed, holy Word of God. If it were to contain even a single untruth or a slight exaggeration, not one part of it would be worthy. And the Bible declares Jesus to be the sole mediator between God and man (I Timothy 2:5). We must wholly accept God’s Word on this issue and never compromise on it.
- We are called to be ambassadors of Christ. The Lord would not call us to the often difficult task of calling people to believe in Him if He were not the only way to heaven. Early Christians were tortured and killed for their belief in Christ. Today, we see Christians persecuted across the globe because of their faith. In our nation, the antagonism toward the Gospel is escalating. And yet, we must be His champions. No matter the cost, we must continue to stand on the Truth of God’s Word.
We find ourselves living in troubling times, my friends. Many good people in our world are following false teachings. Further, we see that growing numbers of American Christians cannot even mention the name of Jesus or live out their faith in Him without retaliation.
As one example, NASA recently told the members of a Christian club at the Johnson Space Center that they could not use the name of Jesus in the agency’s newsletters. Thankfully, NASA later rescinded this mandate and the Praise and Worship Team at the space center is again allowed to use the name of Jesus.
I’m sure you’re aware that this is just one of many examples I could cite, but the point is this: We must advocate the cause of Christ within a culture that often does not want anything to do with Jesus or the Bible. By our very belief in Him, we offend the cultural norms.
And yet, as our four points on page one note, we must stand on God’s Word and remain His witnesses to our friends, neighbors, coworkers and the culture. “Not I, but Christ” must continue to be our theme.
Let’s close with some wonderful lyrics form a song titled “In Christ Alone,” which read:
“No power of hell, no scheme of man
could ever pluck me from His hand.
Til He returns or calls me home,
here in the power of Christ I stand.”
May God bless you, as you stand on His Word. I am so grateful that you continue to support this ministry, as we work together to win people to Christ and teach them His ways.
Your friend in Christ,