Is Jesus the Only Way to Heaven?
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Is Jesus the Only Way to Heaven?

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Below is one of my favorite quotes. CS Lewis is my favorite apologist. (Defender of the Christian faith.) He said Jesus cannot simply only be a good man or a great teacher. The claims He made do not leave us with the ability to simply say that.

Actually, anyone who says Jesus was simply a good teacher has never read much of Him at all. Jesus said amazing things that either make Him God, crazy, or a liar. He doesn't give us any other option.

One of the claims Jesus made is that He is the only way to get to God. (John 14:6) Since Jesus did not leave any room for any other way, neither can we as Christians.

I am trying here to prevent anyone saying the really foolish thing that people often say about Him [that is, Christ]: ‘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…. You can shut Him up for a fool, you can spit at Him and kill Him as a demon; or you can fall at His feet and call Him Lord and God. But let us not come up with any patronising nonsense about His being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to.” -CS Lewis, Mere Christianity

Jesus is the Only Way

(Below is an amazing article by Kevin Lewis from Biola University. I couldn't do any better so here you go.)

Jesus Christ proclaimed, “I am the Way, and the truth, and the Life; no one comes to the Father, but through Me” (John 14:6). The Apostles echoed this claim, stating, “And there is salvation in no one else; there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men, by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12). This doctrine is known as “Christian Particularism.”

Common objections to this doctrine include claims that it is “arrogant,” “prideful,” or “just plain unfair!” These objections, though, are meritless and often fail to address the foundational theological precepts inherent in the doctrine.

To have another way of salvation, a person must change the goal of salvation itself. For example, if the purpose of “salvation” is to become a god, realize your godhood, or merely escape incarceration in a cosmic jailhouse, the means of accomplishing salvation will reflect those mistaken salvific ends.

While the means of biblical salvation includes many concepts such as justification, adoption and regeneration, the objective of biblical salvation is easy to understand: to enjoy a loving, mentoring relationship with our Creator, the one true God. As Adam walked with God, so should we. But how can one restore a broken relationship with God?

The requirements for restoring a broken friendship are easy to understand but difficult for most to do. To restore a lost friendship, the offended person must be willing to forgive by bearing the harm caused by the transgressor, electing not to hold it against him if certain conditions are met. The conditions for forgiveness are that the offending party must repent, confess his sin and want to restore the relationship with the offended party. Since the goal of forgiveness is the restoration of a genuine friendship, the offending party must begin with repentance. When the sinner genuinely repents, confesses and receives the offer of forgiveness, the estranged parties reconcile, walking together again in righteous harmony. If anyone has ever lost and genuinely restored a meaningful friendship, they know this is the only way to do it.

One purely hypothetical illustration may help. If I screamed at my wife, calling her unmentionable names, my wife would rightly be offended and our intimate fellowship would surely be broken. So how would I return to a genuine state of e-harmony with my wife? First, my wife must be willing to bear the harm I caused her and not hold it against me. But to restore the relationship in any meaningful sense, I need to realize that what I did was wrong, repent, and confess my sin to my wife — preferably with symbols of my repentance in hand, such as flowers and candy! When these conditions are fulfilled, my wife will forgive me.

So how does this relate to Jesus Christ as the only way? Simple. To restore the broken relationship with the one true God, the offended party, God, must be willing to bear the consequences of our sin. God accomplishes this by means of the Second Person of the Trinity assuming a full human nature, living a sinless life, and satisfying our penalty for sin on the cross. Sinners, the offenders, need to repent, confess and trust God’s offer of forgiveness. When we do, we are reconciled to God for the purpose of fellowship with him as his beloved children. This is biblical salvation.

Now consider some of the common errors offered as “ways” of salvation. They are incoherent given the biblical objectives of salvation. For example, in a works righteousness model, one would perform good works, such as helping little old ladies across the street, and then return to his wife and demand forgiveness since he “earned it” by good works. This model is as absurd as having a third party, such as the next door neighbor, “bear the burden” of the offense, after which the unrepentant man demands forgiveness from his wife. No sane person would ever attempt this method with their spouse, yet these errors are commonly offered as a “way” of salvation with God.

So contrary to the many objections, since the goal of salvation is forgiveness and reconciliation with a personal God in order to have loving fellowship with him, the only scenario that makes any sense is to have God incarnate, Jesus Christ, bear our sin as a substitute, and require repentance and faith in him on the part of the sinner. He is the only way and the truth and the life! Scripture and good old common sense confirm this truth.


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