In John 14:6, Jesus says, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (NIV)
This is just one of the many verses that says there is only one way to heaven or to God… it’s through Jesus Christ.
The world believes there are many paths to heaven.
But it’s not just non-Christians.
“Born-Again” Christians are saying the same thing.
Nearly 70% of those who claim to be born-again Christians disagree with the Biblical position that Jesus is the only way to God.
Born-again respondents to a new poll were identified based on their affirmative response to the question, “Have you ever made a personal commitment to Jesus Christ that is still important in your life today?” They were also identified by their belief about what happens after they die. Born-again believers agree that, “I will go to Heaven because I confessed my sins and accepted Jesus Christ as my Savior.”
This definition has many limitations, but it reflects what’s happening in many churches today.
Among the top reasons given by “born-again” Christians for not telling others about their faith is the acceptance of “pluralism” or the belief there are other ways to heaven.
They believe people can get to heaven through their different religious belief, whatever they are…and that it’s okay to believe this lie.
It’s the idea that we shouldn’t impose our ideas on others – in a culture where pluralism is a dominant part of all religious groups – because all religious faiths have equal validity and value.
This kind of thinking reveals a total lack of understanding of the vast chasm in character between a holy God and sinful mankind.
The only way anyone can survive for even a second — much less for eternity — in the presence of a perfectly holy God is for his sin to be removed and for his heart to be transformed into sinless righteousness. What other remedy for sin is there other than the substitutionary death of a sinless person — Jesus Christ — on our behalf, to pay the just penalty for our sin and rebellion against God? No one can remove his or her own sinful heart. And God cannot simply overlook sin and yet remain perfectly holy. The entire message of the Bible makes this so clear.
“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” (Romans 6:23)
“For by grace are you saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, that no one should boast.” (Ephesians 2:8-9)
“But as many as received Him [the Son], to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name, who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.” (John 1:12-13)
Of an estimated 176 million American adults who identify as Christian, just 9% — just under 16 million of them — were found to hold even a watered-down version of a biblical worldview.
While a majority of Americans self-identify as Christians and believe that God is all-powerful, all-knowing, and is the Creator of the universe, more than half reject a number of Biblical teachings and principles, including the existence of the Holy Spirit.
Strong majorities also wrongly found:
- Belief that all religious faiths are of equal value
- People are basically good
- People can use acts of goodness to earn their way into Heaven
- People don’t believe in moral absolutes
- Consider feelings, experience, or the input of friends and family as their most trusted sources of moral guidance
- Having faith matters more than which faith you believe in
George Barna research reflects these trends, but more accurately defends the difference between a “Born-Again” Christian and an “Evangelical Christian.”
Born-Again Christians: The Barna Group defines someone as born again if they say they have made a personal commitment to Jesus Christ that is still important in their life today, and who also indicate that they believe when they die they will go to heaven because they have confessed their sins and have accepted Jesus Christ as their Savior.
Evangelical Christians meet the born-again criteria (described above) plus seven other conditions. Those include:
- Saying their faith is very important in their life today
- Believing they have a personal responsibility to share their religious beliefs about Christ with non-believers
- Believing that Satan exists
- Believing that eternal salvation is possible only through grace, not works
- Believing that Jesus Christ lived a sinless life on earth
- Believing and asserting that the Bible is accurate in all that it teaches
- Believing God as the all-knowing, all-powerful, perfect Deity who created the universe and still rules it today
Being classified as an evangelical is not dependent upon church attendance or the denominational affiliation of the church attended.
What do you think? Let me know. Email me firstname.lastname@example.org.