Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Don't All Religions Lead to the Same God?

Remembering Billy Graham's analogy of not being able to swim to Hawaii, all the various religions of the world are basically swimming instructions.  They may help, but they're not going to get you there.  Religion is all about a person telling God how he/she is going to please Him.  But, the only solution that God in His great love and mercy has provided is Jesus. So if going to heaven is what you want, then you need to follow the only solution to your situation.  You need a ticket, but you're unable to pay the price yourself.  But God out of His great love has bought you a ticket, because Jesus purchased it for you through His death for the sins of this world.  And He offers it to you as a gift.

How do you accept / receive the ticket He has for you?  In your own words, admit to God that you are a sinner and that you want to spend eternity with Him.  And accept the forgiveness of sins that He can only offer you through His Son Jesus.

Paraphrasing my first favorite verse from the Bible, "It is by the grace of God that I have been saved from my sins.  It is a gift that He has offered me through faith in His Son Jesus. And it is not the result of any work or good that I myself have done.  It's simply my  believing and trusting in what He has already done for me."   (Ephesians 2:8-9)

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Don't All Religions Lead to the Same God?

Continuing the observation that we cannot make it to / please God on our own, Billy Graham has illustrated our dilemma this way:

Suppose for a moment that the requirement for going to heaven is for a person to swim from California to Hawaii.  Some people wouldn't make it 500 feet, because they can't swim. Some people won't make it more than a couple of hours / miles because they lack the conditioning and strength.   But even the greatest long distance swimmer or an Olympic gold medalist is not going to make it either.  At a distance of about 2,400 miles no individual has the ability to make the journey on his or her own.  The only way to get to Hawaii is for someone to take you there.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Don't All Religions Lead to the Same God?

According to God, there is only one solution to our sin problem.  This is where Christianity is different.  It involves coming to the realization that you, as an individual can't please God. But more importantly it involves understanding that God knows this, and loves you so much that He did for you what you could not do for yourself.  He tells us in the Bible, that what we deserve for our imperfect lives is "death - meaning to be totally separated from Him for eternity."  But instead of giving us what we deserve, He offers us what we could never deserve - the "gift of eternal life" through Jesus Christ.  Once a person understands that their imperfection separates them from God and that nothing they can do will ever result in them becoming perfect on their own, then their need becomes very clear.