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"...if anyone makes the assistance of grace depend on the humility or obedience of man and does not agree that it is a gift of grace itself that we are obedient and humble, he contradicts the Apostle who says, "What have you that you did not receive?" (1 Cor. 4:7), and, "But by the grace of God I am what I am" (1 Cor. 15:10). (Council of Orange: Canon 6)

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  • « Cooperation in the Church (Audio Interview) | Main | A Word to Musicians »

    Is God Narrow Minded? by Pastor John Samson

    Jesus said, "I am the Way, the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through Me." - John 14:6

    "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

    One of the main objections people have to the Christian Gospel is this issue of exclusivity: that the Christian proclaims that only in Jesus Christ is salvation to be found. Certainly it would be less objectionable if Jesus was merely presented as simply one of the many ways to God. Yet it needs to be pointed out that it is not the Christian who came up with this idea, but the claim comes directly from Jesus Himself. Because of this, either Jesus is the Way to God as He said, or else He is a liar and a deceiver, and not even one way to God!

    Lets think about this idea of there only being one way to God by looking at it from a hypothetical perspective. Follow the logic of Dr. R.C. Sproul as he writes the following in his book "Reason to Believe":

    Let's suppose that there is a God who is absolute in His holiness and righteousness. Suppose He freely creates mankind and gives each human being the gift of life. Suppose He sets His creatures in an ideal environment with the freedom to enjoy the wonders of the entire creation. Then let's suppose that God imposes one small restriction upon them, and warns them that if they violate that restriction, they will die. Would such a God have the right to impose such a restriction with the penalty of forfeiture of the gift of life if His authority was violated?

    Then let's suppose that for no just cause, the ungrateful creatures disobeyed the restriction. Yet suppose that when He discovered their violation, instead of killing them instantly, He redeemed them. Suppose the descendants of the first violators increase their hostility and disobedience to God to the point that the whole world become enemies of God. Suppose God still determined to redeem these people, and set aside a distinct nation for Himself, giving them special gifts, so that through them, the entire world would be blessed. Suppose He kept delivering them from all their enemies, yet as soon as they were liberated, they rose up in rebellion to Him.

    Suppose, because of His mercy and grace, God sent specially endowed messengers or prophets to plead with His people to return to Him. Suppose the people killed these divine messengers and mocked their message. Suppose they then began to worship idols of stone and things they had made. Suppose they then invented religions which were totally opposed to the truth He had made clear to them, and they worshiped creatures rather than the Creator.

    Suppose in an ultimate act of redemption, God Himself became incarnate in the person of His Son. Suppose this Son came into the world not to condemn the world, but to redeem it. Suppose this Son were rejected, slandered, mocked, tortured, and murdered. Yet, suppose that God accepted the murder of His own Son as punishment for the sins of the very persons who murdered Him. Suppose this God offered forgiveness, and a cleansing from all guilt, victory over death and eternal peace with Himself. Suppose God gave these people as a free gift the promise of a future life that would be without pain, without sickness, without death, and without tears. Suppose that God said to these people, "There is one thing that I demand. I demand that you honor my one and only Son and that you worship and serve Him alone." Suppose God did all that, would you be willing to say to Him, "God, that's not fair, you haven't done enough?"

    If man has in fact committed cosmic treason against God, what reason could we possibly have that God should provide any way of redemption? In light of the universal rebellion against God, the issue is not why is there only one way, but why is there any way at all?

    Posted by John Samson on January 10, 2006 11:41 AM

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    Good morning to all. Chewymom describes a theology and way of approaching motherhood and child-rearing that is spot on, at least from my perspective. (HT: Tulip Girl) John Samson at Reformation Theology teaches about the exclusivity of Christ’s ... [Read More]

    Comments

    Praise God for His everlasting mercy. R.C.Sproul's "Suppose" list really hits home. In our meager ways, we can never approximate enough thanks for God's indescribable gift. And to think, he did it completely out of his own volition. He didn't do these things because he found anything good in a few people and decided to gather them to himself. Not at all! He selected me and I know what a rotten worm I've been and what rough edges I still carry and yet HE SELECTED ME!!! God's act was purely one of love and selflessness. Thank You Lord for not passing over me.

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