Today, 9 out of 10 people in the general population believe in some definition of “God”. And 7 out of 10 believe in some definition of the afterlife.
But while most believe in some definition of God and the afterlife, 9 out of 10 people today do not believe that Jesus Christ is the one way to the God of the bible. In other words, about 90% of the population do not believe Jesus is necessary in determining their afterlife.
Most striking though is that today 2 out of every 3 people who say they are Christian now no longer believe Jesus when he said, “I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” [John 14:6]. That’s 2/3 – the majority – who say they are Christian are now professing a faith that’s biblically unrecognizable.
I’ll be honest with you. If I (Pastor Chris) did not believe Jesus was the way, the truth and the life to God, then this past Sunday would have been my last. You’d never see me again. I’d be off living my life any way that I wanted, because hey, I’ve chosen to believe there are a lot of ways to God. So why not define it my own way? Why be bound to any organized religion or an ancient text?
But the thing is…I have chosen to believe Jesus at his words. One of the reasons for that is because I’ve realized that defining my spirituality my own way is actually more frightening and more uncertain than trusting in Jesus as Lord and Savior.
I came to that realization because…I know my own heart. No matter how good I may look on the outside, no matter how hard I try to heal my soul on my own, no matter how well I can fake you out to make you think I’m good, I cannot fake out my own conscience, much less fake out God.
It is that realization – that the world’s remedies for the evil in my own heart as well as my own efforts – that they do not bring me peace. I need to know that I will be okay in eternity. I need to know that God himself is on my side here and now and he will provide the way and the truth and the life for me because I cannot do that for myself. And you cannot do that for me either. Only God can.
Jesus makes sense to me because he is the only one who conquered death and satisfied the penalty for my sins. He says that God desires a relationship where we belong to each other for eternity. He didn’t primarily teach a way, a truth and a life to be emulated. He was/is all of those things and he lives through those who believe in him. And he has made all of the difference in a world of competing voices.