Should you encourage your child to play dangerous sports with the goal of becoming a professional athlete and earning a lot of money? From the chanson or depends on the child, parent, talent, motivation and opportunity. The answer is a resounding "no," if you ask this father of four. I'll explain more of my rational later. For starters, caveat emptor: sports, like other businesses, have the un...
One of Jesus’ disciples named Thomas asked this very question and it is recorded for us in the Gospel of John (Chapter 14 vs. 5 and 6). Thomas said (to Jesus): “Lord, we don’t know where you are going, so how can we know the way?”
Jesus replied, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” From this statement, Jesus made a profound statement. He declared that He is the only way to the Father, which in this case meant entering Heaven where the Father dwells.
For centuries, humanity has been afraid of death and what lies beyond. To try to conquer the fear of death, people have created religions, gods, deities, and some kind of religious system that can provide comfort over their fear of death.
I have never contacted family and friends at a funeral who did not sincerely hope their deceased loved one was in heaven. For them, it didn’t matter how their loved one lived, what religion they followed, or what sins they might have committed in the family. For family and friends a good person (your loved one) deserves to be in heaven.
But what did Jesus say? He (Jesus) is the only way!
Why must humanity go through Jesus to enter heaven when they die? This is the question that many are trying to understand. Using the Holy Bible as our guide, I will answer the question why Jesus?
To answer this question we must first understand how God describes the human race.
Novels 1 vs. 18 – 32 says .. “But God shows his wrath from heaven against all sinners and wicked who suppress the truth with their wickedness. They know the truth about God because he has made it evident to them. Since the world was created, People have seen the earth and the sky. Through everything God made, they can clearly see His invisible qualities, His eternal power, and His divine nature. So they have no excuse for not knowing God.
Yes, they knew God, but they would not worship him as God or thank him. And they began to come up with silly ideas of what God was like. As a result, their minds became dark and confused. Claiming to be wise, they instead became complete fools. And instead of worshiping the glorious and eternal God, they worshiped idols made to resemble the mother, people, birds, animals and reptiles. So God left them to do whatever shameful thing their hearts desired. As a result, they did vile and degrading things to each other’s bodies. They traded the truth about God for a lie. So they worshiped and served the things that God created instead of the Creator himself, who is worthy of eternal praise! Amen.
That is why God abandoned them to their shameful desires. Even women turned against the natural way of having sex and indulged in sex with each other. And the men, instead of having normal sexual relations with the women, burned with lust for each other. (Homosexuality) Men did shameful things with other men, and as a result of this sin, they suffered within themselves the punishment they deserved. Because they thought it was foolish to acknowledge God, he abandoned them to his foolish thinking and allowed them to do things that should never be done. Their lives were filled with all kinds of evil, sin, covetousness, hatred, envy, murder, fighting, deceit, malicious behavior, and gossip. They are traitors, haters of God, insolent, proud, and boastful. They invent new ways to sin and disobey their parents. They refuse to understand, they break their promises, they are heartless and merciless. They know that God’s justice demands that those who do these things deserve to die, but they do them anyway. Worse, they encourage others to do it too.”
Novels 3 vs. 10-12 says… “No one is fair. Not even one! No one is truly wise, no one seeks God. All have strayed, all have become useless. No one does good, not a single one.”
As we can clearly see in the scriptures, God describes humans as evil and corrupt. None of us is good!
Even when we think we are good people, in light of God’s justice, we are not. Every human being deserves to be under the wrath of God because of sin. This is our natural position before God.
We are sinners and we do not deserve God’s love and favor. We deserve his wrath and retribution from him for our rebellion against him. The truth is that no one deserves to enter Heaven when they die.
We all deserve hell!
Before we can understand our need for Jesus, we must address the elephant in the room. We must come to see ourselves as God sees us in our natural state. We are vile, miserable sinners!
Yes, you and I are wicked and corrupted by sin. We deserve to spend an eternity subject to the wrath of God in hell. Apart from Jesus, this is how God sees us and we are considered enemies of God. His wrath is aimed directly at you and me, and He (God) is JUST in doing so. God’s perfect justice demands that we die because of our sin.
Ezekiel 18 vs. 20, God says: “The soul that sins, that one will die!”
But God, who is rich in love and mercy, did something that is unspeakably profound. He gave his Son his only begotten, so that everyone who believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. God sent his son into the world, not to judge the world, but to save the world through him. There is no judgment (wrath of God) against anyone who believes in him. But anyone who does not believe in him has already been judged for not believing in the only begotten Son of God (John 3 vs. 16-18).
It is by believing in the Son of God and trusting in His finished works that you and I are declared righteous before God. Through believing (Faith) we are made right with God and are no longer under wrath.
What are the finished works of Christ?
Jesus Christ accomplished many things while on earth, but there are three specific works that needed to be done to rescue sinners from hell.
The first work that Jesus did was to live a sinless life. From birth to death he never sinned. He lived in perfect obedience to God’s holy law. This is something that no human being has been able to do or will ever be able to do. Jesus fulfilled and kept all of God’s law. He did this for us! Jesus was the perfect sacrifice because no sin was found within Him. He was perfectly righteous in the eyes of God.
The second work that Jesus performed was that he suffered and died on the cross as an atonement for our sins. 1 Peter 2 vs. 24 says: “He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, so that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed.”
Jesus healed us by taking our sins and paying the full penalty that corresponded to us. He died under the wrath of God that we deserved. Only God the Son could do this for us. It was a wonderful act of love for Jesus to do this for us. Oh how I love Jesus!
Because of Christ’s atoning work on the cross, my sins have been paid for in full, and as a result, I can confidently enter God’s presence through Jesus Christ.
The third work that Jesus accomplished was that he rose from the dead on the third day. Jesus, after death, was put in a tomb for three days. On the third day he rose again, thus defeating death and guaranteeing that all who believe in him will have eternal life. Just as Jesus rose to life, all who trust in Him will rise to eternal life.
When we put our faith in Jesus and his finished works, the Holy Spirit of God immediately comes into our lives and seals us for all eternity. We now belong 100% to Jesus Christ our Lord, and no one, not even us, can ever again separate us from the love of God that is found in Christ Jesus. Our eternal home in heaven is secure because of what Christ has done for us.
We believe that Jesus is the only way to heaven. We believe that Christ fulfills God’s law for us. We believe that Christ died for our sins and paid our full penalty. We believe that Christ rose from the dead and is seated at the right hand of God in heaven, always interceding for us. We believe that Christ will come again in the future to gather his Church (born again), establish his kingdom, and judge the world.
Jesus Christ truly is the Way, the Truth and the Life.
How can we be sure that we will go to heaven when we die? Believing in his name!!
Acts 4 vs. 12 says: “And in no other there is salvation, because there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we can be saved.”