But I observed that, although I was such a great sinner before conversion, God never burdened me heavily with the guilt of sins committed while I was in ignorance. He only showed me that I was lost if I did not have Christ because I had been a sinner. I saw that I needed a perfect righteousness to present me without fault before God, and this righteousness was nowhere to be found but in the person of Jesus Christ.
The exclusive claim of Christianity about Christ is not centered on our belief that Jesus was right about God. It is centered on our claim that God was fully present in Christ to reconcile the world to Himself (2 Cor. 5:18). It is the theological claim about Jesus (that He is God) that makes the spiritual claims of Jesus potent. Jesus’ words are right because those words are God’s words (Jn. 14:10b). Jesus’ “way” is not superior because it promotes a higher ethic or because it champions values that resonate with our spiritual sensitivities. Jesus’ way is true because in Him we find God drawing us to Himself.
We see that our whole salvation and all its parts are comprehended in Christ. We should therefore take care not to derive the least portion of it from anywhere else. If we seek salvation, we are taught by the very name of Jesus that it is of Him. If we seek any other gifts of the Spirit, they will be found in His anointing. If we seek strength, it lies in His dominion; if purity, in His conception; if gentleness, it appears in His birth. For by His birth He was made like us in all respects, that He might learn to feel our pain. If we seek redemption, it lies in His passion; if acquittal, in His condemnation; if remission of the curse, in His cross; if satisfaction, in His sacrifice; if purification, in His blood; if reconciliation, in His descent into hell; if mortification of the flesh, in His tomb; if newness of life, in His resurrection; if immortality, in the same; if inheritance of the Heavenly Kingdom, in His entrance into heaven; if protection, if security, if abundant supply of all blessings, in His Kingdom; if untroubled expectation of judgment, in the power given to Him to judge. In short, since rich store of every kind of good abounds in Him, let us drink our fill from this fountain, and from no other.
If any (or almost any) approach to God is as good as another, how do we make sense of the Bible’s insistence on monotheism, its consistent rejection of all forms of idolatry, and the missionary impulse — that the nations would turn to the true God — running from Genesis to Revelation? Most crucially, pluralism cannot do justice to the privileged place the Bible gives to Jesus Christ. Every knee must bow before Him. He will judge all peoples. The God of the Bible, revealed as Yahweh in the Old Testament and incarnated at Jesus Christ in the New, is nothing if not a universal God who accepts no rivals. To reject the unique person and work of Jesus Christ is to make an utter mockery of the Bible. To reject His claims is to reject God Himself and to steal from Him the glory that is rightly His. Ultimately it is to turn one’s back on the Bible and on the God of the Bible.
Jesus Christ – The Only Way and Our Only Hope by Tim Challies taken from Don’t Call it a Comeback, edited by Kevin DeYoung, copyright 2011, Crossway Books, a division of Good News Publishers, Wheaton Illinois 60187, www.crosswaybooks.org. Page 130.
To deny that Jesus Christ is the only Savior is to deny the utter seriousness of the human condition and the gravity of the offense against God. To deny that faith is the only way by which we may apprehend Christ’s riches is to deny the uniqueness of the person and work of the Savior and to deny the clarity of His Word. At stake when we consider Jesus’ claims to exclusivity is the gospel itself. The stakes could not possibly be any higher.
Jesus Christ – The Only Way and Our Only Hope by Tim Challies taken from Don’t Call it a Comeback, edited by Kevin DeYoung, copyright 2011, Crossway Books, a division of Good News Publishers, Wheaton Illinois 60187, www.crosswaybooks.org. Page 139.
There is one kind of man – the man trapped in the total depravity of his sinful nature, inherited from his father Adam (Rom. 5:18). And since there is only one kind of man, there is only one kind of salvation – faith through the second Adam, Jesus Christ.
The judgment executed on Christ puts to death any thought that God could otherwise forgive sin. Unless there was no other way for us to be redeemed, the cross makes no sense… If there was any way to save the world other than by Jesus’ death on the cross, then His death was unnecessary and foolish. Would not a viable alternative make a mockery of Jesus’ own agonized words in the Garden of Gethsemane: “My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me” (Matt. 26:39)? The cup was not removed, for there was no other way.
How astonishing is it that a Person who is blessed forever and is infinitely and essentially happy should endure the greatest sufferings that ever were endured on earth! That a Person who is the supreme Lord and Judge of the world should be arraigned and should stand at the judgment seat of mortal worms and then be condemned. That a Person who is the living God and the fountain of life should be put to death. That a Person who created the world and gives life to all His creatures should be put to death by His own creatures. That a Person of infinite majesty and glory, and so the object of the love, praises and adoration of angels, should be mocked and spit upon by the vilest of men. That a Person infinitely good and who is love itself should suffer the greatest cruelty. That Person who is infinitely beloved of the Father should be put to inexpressible anguish under His own Father’s wrath. That He who is the King of heaven, who has heaven for His throne and earth for His footstool, should be buried in the prison of the grave. How wonderful is this! And yet this is the way that God’s wisdom has fixed upon as the way of sinners’ salvation, as neither unsuitable nor dishonorable to Christ.
When a person is sick, the doctor may prescribe medicine. What heals the man? Is it the medicine, or his reaching out for the medicine? Christ is the only solution for your problem of sin and judgment. He is the medicine. Who else but Christ can rescue you and bring you into the forgiven family of God? He is the exclusive way to God. He is a narrow way, but a sufficient one. But how do you reach out to Christ? By repentance and faith.
The problem which has come to the surface in the encounter of Christianity with the other world religions is this: If Jesus was literally God incarnate, and if it is by His death alone that men can be saved, and by their response to Him alone that they can appropriate that salvation, then the only doorway to eternal life is the Christian faith.
Christ is the only way to God, but there are as many ways to Christ as there are people who come to Him.
I do believe and confess that Christ’s condemnation is my absolution, that His crucifying is my deliverance, His descending into hell is my ascending into heaven, His death is my life, His blood is my cleansing and purging, by whom only I am washed, purified and cleansed from all my sins, so that I neither receive nor believe any other purgatory, either in this world or in the other, whereby I am purged, but only the blood of Jesus Christ, by which all are purged and made clean forever.
There are basically only two kinds of religion in the world: those based on human achievement and those based on divine accomplishment. One says you can earn your way to heaven; the other says you must trust in Jesus Christ alone.
Wisdom without Christ is damning folly – righteousness without Christ is guilt and condemnation – sanctification without Christ is filth and sin – redemption without Christ is bondage and slavery (Robert Traill).
God’s holiness and righteous glory have been desecrated, defamed, and blasphemed by our sin. It is with a holy God that we have to do in our guilt! And there can be no justification, no reconciliation, no cleansing of our conscience, unless the holiness of God is honored and the defamation of His righteousness is repaired. The urgency of our problem with guilt is not that we feel miserable, but that God’s name has been blasphemed. We live in a day with such a horrendously inflated view of human potential and such a miserably tiny view of God’s holiness that we can scarcely understand what the real problem of guilt is. The real problem is not, “How can God be loving and yet condemn people with such little sins?” The real problem is, “How can God be righteous if He acquits such miserable sinners as we?” There can be no lasting remedy for guilt which does not deal with God’s righteous indignation against sin. That’s why there had to be a sacrifice. And not just any sacrifice, but the sacrifice of the Son of God! No one else, and no other act, could repair the defamation done to the glory of God by our sins. But when Jesus died for the glory of the Father, satisfaction was made. The glory was restored. Righteousness was demonstrated. Henceforth it is clear that when God, by grace, freely justifies the ungodly (Romans 4:5), He is not indifferent to the demands of justice. It is all based on the grand transaction between the Father and the Son on the morning of Good Friday at Calvary. No other gospel can take away our guilt because no other gospel corresponds to the cosmic proportions of our sin in relation to God.
On the one hand, Christianity is the most exclusive religion imaginable. It insists that belief in Jesus Christ is absolutely necessary for salvation. Jesus is the only way. You must go to Him to get eternal life. On the other hand, Christianity is the most inclusive religion possible because it makes salvation accessible to everyone. Salvation is offered for all people through one Person. Whoever believes in Him will not perish. Anyone who receives or believes in Jesus will live forever with God. There are no racial, social, intellectual, or economic criteria that prevent anyone from joining God’s family. One of the problems with the other religions of the world is that they all smack of elitism… Only Christianity offers salvation to everyone as a free gift.
Christianity insists that everyone is a sinner through and through. Our minds, hearts, wills, and emotions are in rebellion against God. When it comes right down to it, the problem is not that there is only one way to God (through Christ). The real problem is that human beings will not follow God at all.
If Christ had not gone to the cross and suffered in our stead, the just for the unjust, there would not have been a spark of hope for us. There would have been a mighty gulf between ourselves and God, which no man ever could have passed.
Narrow-minded Christians or is Jesus Christ the ONLY way to heaven? 1. Our fundamental problem with God is our sin. It separates us from His love. In His holiness He is obligated to judge it – now and eternally. ONLY Christ died for the removal of our sin and subsequent forgiveness. 2. Jesus taught it – “Jesus said to him, ‘I am the way, and the truth, and the life; NO ONE comes to the Father, but through ME'” (Jn. 14:6). 3. Of every religious figure, ONLY Christ rose from the dead in the Resurrection and proved His victory over death, the devil and sin. 4. If there were any other way to heaven, why would God send His only Son to die an excruciating death on a cross? “I do not nullify the grace of God; for if righteousness comes through the Law [doing good works], then Christ died needlessly” (Gal. 2:21). 5. The Bible teaches it – “And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men, by which we must be saved” (Ac. 4:12). Is The ONLY Savior YOUR Savior – evidenced by your confession and lifestyle (Lk. 8:21)?
If Jesus Christ made the complete atonement for our sin, how can we choose another option and believe it is a viable option in God’s eyes? How can we assume His work was incomplete and seek to supplement it with our own works? How can we in any way believe that we can merit our salvation in whole or part and take glory (to some degree) for what we have attained and thus rob Him of the complete glory that is due His name?
It is not thy hold on Christ that saves thee; it is Christ. It is not thy joy in Christ that saves thee; it is Christ. It is not even thy faith in Christ, though that be the instrument; it is Christ’s blood and merit.
True salvation is not to be found through the mere reception of any creed, however true or scriptural. Mere “head notion” is not the road to heaven. “You must be born again,” means a great deal more than that you must believe certain dogmas. The study of the Bible cannot save you! You must press beyond this; you must come to the living, personal Christ, or else your acceptance of the soundest creed cannot avail for the salvation of your soul. Salvation lies in Jesus only!
Depend on it, my hearer, you never will go to heaven unless you are prepared to worship Jesus Christ as God.
Without the way, there is no going; without the truth, there is no knowing; without the life, there is no living (see John 14:6).
Jesus is not one of many ways to approach God, nor is He the best of several ways; He is the only way.
The good news is that in the face of Jesus Christ we see the very face of God, the One who has decided to be with us and for us in spite of our sin.
The only hope there is of standing righteous and acceptable before God is by receiving by faith what another has done for you. All self-attainment, self-accomplishment, self-righteousness must be abandoned realizing the vanity and hopelessness of bringing to pass our own right standing before God. We must humble ourselves before a holy God, recognize our sin, acknowledge our complete inability to remove that sin. Then we must embrace what Christ has done for us, instead of us, paying the penalty of our sin in our place in order to bring to us, by faith, a credited righteousness by which God may rightly justify us as ungodly sinners. Look to Christ and Christ alone.
Consider the following ways in which Jesus alone qualifies as the exclusive Savior:
1. Christ alone was conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of a virgin (Isa. 7:14; Mt. 1:18-25; Lk. 1:26-38).
2. Christ alone is God incarnate (Jn. 1:1-18; Heb. 1:1-3; 2:14-28; Phil. 2:5-11; 1 Tim. 2:5-6).
3. Christ alone lived a sinless life (2 Cor. 5:21; Heb. 4:15; 7:23-28; 9:13-14; 1 Pet. 2:21-24).
4. Christ alone died a penal substitutionary death (Isa. 53:4-6; Rom. 3:21-26; 1 Cor. 5:21; Gal. 3:10-14).
5. Christ alone rose from the dead triumphant over sin (Ac. 2:22-24; Rom. 4:25; 1 Cor. 15:3-8, 16-23).
The summary of the gospel is that our Lord Jesus Christ, the true Son of God, has revealed the will of His heavenly Father to us, and with His innocence has redeemed us from death, and has reconciled us with God. Therefore, Christ is the only way to salvation for all those who have been, are, and will be.