For me, the toughest question non-believers pose is “How is it this loving God of yours offers only one way to be saved?” And the follow on: “So he’s going to send every one of those innocent people in foreign countries to hell, even though they didn’t hear about Jesus or because their family traditions and their culture never really gave them a chance to believe and follow Him”.
And there it is… in the Bible…in red ink…
“I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6).
So what do you do? What do you really believe about this? How do you respond?
C.S. Lewis was one of the smartest men to ever walk the planet. Here’s what he said:
“Is it not frightfully unfair that this new life should be confined to people who have heard of Christ and been able to believe in Him? But the truth is God has not told us what his arrangements about other people are. We do know that no man can be saved except through Christ; we do not know that only those who know him can be saved through him. But in the meantime, if you are worried about the people outside, the most unreasonable thing you can do is remain outside yourself. Christian’s are Christ’s body, the organism through which he works. Every addition to that body enables Him to do more. If you want to help those outside, you must add your own little cell to the body of Christ who alone can help them.”
Upon whose righteousness do we question God or ‘judge’ His rules, actions or decisions? It may seem “frightfully unfair” but we don’t know the whole story. As Lewis said, “God has not told us what his arrangements about other people are.” We don’t know.
Humans always want a way out. We say we want it for the other guy, but we want it for ourselves too. “If hell isn’t universal for everyone outside the Christian faith, then maybe I’ll be alright with my moderate faith and ‘religiosity’. A loophole is a loophole. I may not need it, but you never know.”
Here’s my take. Why delay acting on what you know waiting to find out what you don’t know? Only in heaven will we learn all about God’s redemptive efforts. If you trust Jesus and there is a heaven, you’ll get to go there and ask Him yourself. If you sit behind your big question and never believe, you won’t ever know…until it’s too late to do anything about it.
I got a big laugh out of my friend the other day when I told him the name of my donor-advised fund… “The 30 Seconds A.I.D. Fund.”
“What’s that stand for?” he asked.
“30 Seconds After I Die”
“It’ll be clear right then. Bliss for some. ‘Uh oh’ for the rest.”
Start by asking God for the faith to believe yourself. To put aside your doubt and your desire for an exception or a way out. Then help your friends and family see Jesus as the “way in” instead of living in the confusion of looking for a way out. No one will know for sure until 30 seconds after they die, so pray they’ll be on the right side of the question by then.
Question: Will you write down the names of the people you care about who don’t know Jesus and are hung up on these unknowable questions? Will you pray for them? Tell us here
ACTIVATE THE MEN IN YOUR CHURCH
Small group mentoring can help you engage your men, build your core group of leaders, and transform your church. Our free resources equip you with all the tools you need to launch a sustainable mentoring program.