Written by Stephen Passmore
THURSDAY, 2nd April 2020
Jesus said to him (Thomas), “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” John 14:6
There are a bewildering array of options out there, when it comes to religion aren’t there? And the culture around us would tell us that each of these religions is equally valid. To say therefore that there is only one way to God, and that only Christianity has the whole truth, surely implies an attitude of arrogance and intolerance and non-inclusion in this 21st century, when there are an estimated 4,200 different religions in the world – some of which draw a huge number of adherents. So, was Jesus deluded or even mentally unbalanced when he asserted, “I am the way, the truth, and the life?” Or did Jesus make that claim because it was in point of fact true?
Well, clearly according to this verse, Jesus thought that what others believed about Him was fundamentally important. He wasn’t interested in neutrality. His followers had to either be all in, or eventually left out. And the biblical verdict is that there is going to be nobody in heaven praising any other god, because according to Revelation 5:12, heaven will be united by one single chorus of praise, “worthy is the Lamb who was slain.” According to Scripture therefore, if anyone is going to be saved, and dwell forever in the Father’s house, he or she is going to have to be saved by the sinless, crucified, risen and ascended divine Son of God. There is no other way to the Father except through Jesus Christ. He IS the SOLE mediator between God and man. He IS the SOLE mediator of the truth about God. He IS the SOLE mediator of life from God.
WAS Jesus purposely telling lies? Well if he was, He was a fool, because His claims led Him to a cross. Was Jesus a seriously deluded lunatic? Well if He was, that is not in keeping with the impression He has left on history – after all, it is from His birth that most of the human race dates its calendar. Perhaps then, He really is the way to God. After all, the fact that He is still transforming lives surely points to Him being who He said He was.
The exclusive claim of Christianity is that “…. there is NO OTHER NAME under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12) The world has changed, but the Word of God has not changed. Salvation is made available to us by the amazing grace of God, and through faith in Jesus Christ, His Son. Christina Rosetti put it so well when she wrote,
“None other Lamb, none other name.
None other hope in heav’n or earth or sea.
None other hiding place from guilt and shame.
None beside Thee!”