by Mike Ratliff
My wife and I returned home yesterday from a trip to visit our son who lives in Washington, D.C. We flew there on the 6th and flew home on the 10th. While there many of the things that we have been attempting to bring to light through this ministry concerning the attempts to pluralize our society from top to bottom, including our faith, were made painfully obvious. For example, in our hotel room was a slick book containing very cool pictures of the sights in the area. One of the articles in the book was all about the National Cathedral. There were pictures of the Dali Lama speaking there as well as church members walking through “spiritual labyrinths” which were laid out on the cathedral floor. One of the leading paragraphs in the article proudly proclaimed that the National Cathedral’s focus was to serve all religions.
God’s ways are not man’s ways. What seems right to man is not necessarily right according to God, who is always right. For instance, God’s Word clearly teaches the exclusiveness of Jesus as the only way to approach to the Father. There is only one way, not many ways, which lead to God. That way is Jesus Christ alone. We must be aware that our culture has become contaminated by religious relativism. This relativism’s chief virtue is “acceptance” of others as coequal in our faith no matter what their religion is. This “acceptance” holds as its primary goal “diversity” with its public philosophy being pluralism. Those professing Christians who hold to this “philosophy” have compromised the truth plainly taught in God’s Word. Also, those who have not made this compromise and refuse to water-down the Gospel are see as misfits and bigots.
Man-made religion created in our time will be “open,” “tolerant,” and “accepting” of all other points of view. On the other hand, genuine Christianity is the opposite. In fact, those who have made the compromise will view those of us who refuse to as “Bible-thumpers” and close-minded bigots. Our Lord spoke the following words just hours before His crucifixion.
Our Lord declares that He is the way to God because He is the truth of God and the life of God. This is a statement of emphatic exclusivity. The words “No one” in English is made up of one Greek word, οὐδείς or oudeis. This word means, “Not even one, not the least, not a one.” So, who comes to the Father and what does that mean? “Those who come to the Father” is a reference to those who come to salvation. All whom God saves come to the Father through the Son and no other way nor through anyone else or through any other way outside of Christ. This statement of exclusivity by our Lord Jesus Christ may not be popular in our day and time, but that does not change the veracity of it.
There are times when the pressure to “compromise” this message is extreme. Many who believe they are Christians refuse to hold to the exclusivity of Christ as the only way to the Father. The Bible is very clear that many claim that Christ is their Saviour, but He does not know them nor do they know Him. Our salvation is not according to our whims and desires, but according to God’s will, by His grace through the faith given to us by Him.
Compromise may be seen as an essential element of coexistence in our time, but it cannot be applied to the Gospel and it remain the Gospel. Of course, those who argue for this compromise do not know the truth because they do not know the Saviour. God changes those whom He saves. Salvation is a rebirth unto eternal life. This rebirth, this regeneration, changes the Christian forever. The genuine Christian is not perfect, but is in the process of sanctification that is God’s plan to burn away all in the believer that is not of Christ and replace it with Christlikeness. Those in this process will not view this world as their home, but will be continually driven to let go of the things and parts of their lives that lead to compromise and self-focus.
The temporal is not the home of the genuine Christian nor does it contain any portion of his or her hope. No, the hope of the Christian is in Christ alone and the promises given by Him to all whom He saves. I exhort all reading this who do know Christ as Lord and Saviour to reevaluate the focus of their lives. Ask yourself if you are pursuing fulfillment in the things of this world or in Christ alone. If it is the former than I exhort you to repent of this and turn your hearts to your Saviour for your all. If it is the latter then I exhort you to pray for other believers to find their way to this path and this walk. To God be the glory!
Soli Deo Gloria!