Are we being narrow-minded if we tell people that Jesus Christ is the only way of salvation? Today, Stephen Nichols explains that the kindest thing we can give to our neighbors is the truth.
NATHAN W. BINGHAM: Joining us this week is Ligonier teaching fellow as well as the president of Reformation Bible College, Dr. Stephen Nichols. Dr. Nichols, is it unfair to say that Christ is the only way?
DR. STEPHEN NICHOLS: Unfair? No. Pure, undeserved mercy? Yes. This is a very crucial issue. In our culture, we have pluralism, and pluralism says: "Many gods, many ways. All religions are equally valid. These are just different expressions of different faith communities and their apprehension of some divine being." That's pluralism. We also have in the church, inclusivism. If pluralism says, "Many gods, many ways," inclusivism says, "One God, many ways." These are both, whether it's inclusivism or pluralism, these are both driven by the emphasis in our culture today on tolerance.
Well, against both pluralism and against inclusivism is what we call exclusivism, that Jesus Christ is the only way. In John 14:6, Jesus declares: "I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." We could also go back a few chapters and look at John 6:22 all the way through the end of that long chapter, and Jesus declares the same thing.
In Acts 4, Peter tells us that "there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved" (Acts 4:12). And we could add to this mix Paul in Romans 10: Christ must be preached, and people must hear of Christ, and people must believe in Christ in order to be saved. So, the Bible teaches very clearly and very definitively that there is one God and there is only one way of salvation, and that is through faith alone in Christ alone.
You know, the kindest thing that we can do for our neighbor, whether they are across the street or across the world, is to tell the truth. And this is the truth, that eternal life and the forgiveness of sin and peace with God, that only comes through faith in Jesus Christ. It's not about fairness. It's about God's abundant mercy. It's about God's abundant grace, and that is given freely to us in the person of Jesus Christ. That's God's gift to us"His Son. Salvation is in Jesus Christ alone.
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