At last week’s Reasonable Faith Houston Lectures, we talked about why Christianity stands out as different in a pluralistic world. Some people wonder why we make such a fuss about Jesus Christ and Christianity, since they take the stance that all religions are basically the same. They assume that all faiths are talking about the same thing, the same God, but are putting it in a different way.
There are good, clear reasons why I believe that the Bible uniquely contains God’s truth. Separate, distinct, and superior among those reasons is that no other religion has Jesus Christ as Savior of mankind and Teacher of the truths of God. The Bible states unequivocally in Acts 4:10-12:
10 let it be known to all of you and to all the people of Israel that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead-by him this man is standing before you well.
11 This Jesus is the stone that was rejected by you, the builders, which has become the cornerstone.
12 And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.
This assertion affirms the exclusive relationship that exists between the Father and Son, as well as the fact that all access to the Father and all hope of a relationship with the Creator of all things rests in Jesus Christ.
As early in His ministry as John 3:17-18, Jesus shows that He was thoroughly aware of how necessary He is to salvation:
17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.
18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God.
Jesus also asserts His necessity to salvation boldly in John 14:6, responding to Thomas, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.”
People have a right to adopt any religion they choose, or no religion at all. Religious variety exists, but it is impossible for every religion to be correct.
Various faiths having some true positions (e.g. Buddhists are right that suffering is universal; Muslims are right that there is one God; Hindus are right that the Ultimate is infinite; Jews are right that God spoke through the Hebrew prophets). Any religion can claim to offer salvation and rewards for a life well lived. However, only one religion, regardless of how high-minded and appealing to a person’s hopes and dreams, has Jesus Christ as its Savior and centerpiece of truth. That religion is Christianity.