Money has a way of getting our immediate attention. If you doubt that, throw a handful of twenty dollar bills up in the air while walking down a busy sidewalk and see what happens. And that says a lot more about human nature than it does about money. Some folks quote the Bible as saying, “money is the root of all evil,” but God does not say money is the root of all evil. He says it is the love of money that is the source of trouble (1 Timothy 6:10). Money, in and of itself, is simply a tool and has no good or evil connotation whatsoever.
Do we live in a land of diminishing returns? At the supermarket, the price goes up while the box gets smaller. At work, we’re asked to produce more and take less. Benefits shrink or are eliminated. Given this reality, it’s not surprising that many of us fear that with less coming in, life will not be good. History, however, teaches us that tough economic times can be blessings in disguise because they force us to become very clear about our priorities.
One of Christianity’s most controversial teachings is that there are not many roads that lead to God. There is only one. In John 14, Jesus declares that he alone is the way. Not surprisingly, there are many who strongly disagree with Jesus’s claim. And not just atheists and skeptics. Many Christians are also uncomfortable with his declaration. We wonder about the fate of the millions who lived before Jesus and the millions today who have never heard his message. Are they to suffer eternal punishment for being born in the wrong time or place?
That is an important question, and one the Bible addresses. The Scriptures tell us that every tribe and nation from the beginning of time has heard all they need to hear to choose Jesus.
The Bible tells us that God accomplishes this in four ways:
Christianity is getting less and less popular in the United States. Why? We could look at several reasons, but I would like to zero in on one of the most offensive teachings in Christianity: the claim that there are not many roads that lead to God. There is only one–Jesus.
So why does orthodox Christianity cling to this narrow-minded belief? Who said that Jesus was the only way? Well, Jesus did. He said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to Father except through me” (John 14:6). Not a lot of ambiguity in that statement.