Friday, June 21, 2024
Friday, June 21, 2024
HomeAll The NewsJUST THINKING: Are All Religions Working To Get to Heaven?

JUST THINKING: Are All Religions Working To Get to Heaven?

I was just thinking about numerous conversations I’ve had with people from different ethnicities, cultures and religions. I interact with Christians (of varying denominations), Buddhists, Hindus, Muslims and a few Jews on a weekly basis. Invariably, our conversations will come down to my being asked, “Aren’t we all working for the same goal? Aren’t we all working to get to Heaven?”

It is amazing how quiet most get (a few will actually turn and walk away) when I say that nobody can do enough good works to merit going to Heaven!

A Vast Majority do not Understand Depravity

The sin nature of humans is not learned, it is inherited! Since Adam and Eve sinned in the garden, from their children to every person born afterward, the depraved nature of sinfulness has been passed from parent to child. That truth is set forth in God’s Word. “…There is none righteous, not even one” (Rom. 3:9 NIV). The resulting effect is this: “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God…” (Rom. 3:23).

The Inability of Works to Redeem

In every conversation with these I have mentioned, there is an emphasis on their works of righteousness. They have believed a lie, the influence from Satan, and they believe their works will merit their redemption from the condemnation of sin.

I told a Hindu friend that the success rate of humans working their way to Heaven was equal to that of a person trying to remove Mt. Everest with a pair of tweezers. It will never be done! When we humans take pride in our good works, we fail to realize such action itself is a sin. We must recognize the inability of works to redeem.

Sadly, Even Church Attendees are Confused

Our friends of other religions are deceived, causing them to be confused by what they have been taught. There are also those who attend Christian churches that teach works are essential for one’s salvation. How sad — since the Word of God is so clear: “For it is by grace you have been saved through faith — and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God — not of works, so that no one can boast(Eph. 2:8-9).

Works Negate the Sacrifice of Jesus

I preface this by saying that some from these other religions believe Jesus was real, but that like Isaiah, Ezekiel or Malachi, He was only a prophet and a good man. But Jesus was more — much more — than that limited view of the Son of God.

If good works could save a person a person from the condemnation of sin — Jesus Christ would not have needed to be the sacrifice on the cross for our sins. If good works could save, we could have made it to Heaven without Jesus, and we could boast of our own righteousness.

Yet no mere human could please the perfect and holy God of Heaven. Only One could take on human flesh, live a sinless life and please the Father in Heaven. That One is Jesus — not Buddha, Abraham, Moses, Muhammed, Vishna or anyone else.

No Other Name — No Other Way

The apostle Peter boldly proclaimed to the Jewish leaders: “Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12). The man who walked on water to Jesus, the one who denied Jesus three times, is the one who told those leaders that the name of whom he was referring was Jesus of Nazareth.

Are all religions working for the same goal — to get to Heaven? No! There is only one way and that is by God’s gift of grace and a person’s faith is Jesus Christ. Jesus said it plainly: “…I am the way and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me(John 14:6).

Bad Teaching Leads to Bad Decisions

None of the people to whom I have referred are mean. They are the recipients of errant teaching which led them to wrong decisions. The Lord gave us a stirring statement when He said, “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it” (Matt. 7:13-14).