This BLOG is adapted from Chapter 4 “The Uniqueness of Christianity” of my book “Always Be Ready to Give an Answer!” In Chapter 3, I summarized the common worldviews and religions present on the US today including Atheism, Agnosticism, Humanism, Materialism, Judaism, Hinduism, Islam, and Marginal Christianity.
In spite of all of these worldviews and religions there are only three different views of Mankind’s position in this world and his possible rescue from death: 1) God’s not relevant and death is final. 2) Non-Christian religions escape death by human efforts, and 3) Christianity, God rescues man from death. All must answer the same question: “What happens to us when we die?”
God’s not relevant and death is final. Atheism, agnosticism, humanism, and materialism take the position that God may or may not exist but, if he does, he is not relevant to human behavior. They all believe mankind will evolve to a better state without aid from a deity. Evolution from microbes to man is the foundation of these views. Their answer to “What happens when we die?” is simply: “We are extinguished and no longer exist. There is no afterlife.” Atheists, agnostics, and humanists that understand this fully may take their own lives as they age because of the trials of aging and the hopelessness of this view. They ask, “What’s the point of suffering the painful aging process?” This view is bad news only! There is no good news here, only extinction and nothingness! There is no purpose or meaning to life in these views! As Christians, we can see the hopelessness of this view clearly because we have the “good news” of the gospel.
Non-Christian religions escape death by human efforts. In all world religions, except Christianity, some form of human effort with or without divine intervention achieves reconciliation with God. It is good works or keeping ritual practices that provide redemption to escape death. It is always achieved by human effort in some form. All these religions recognize the fundamental flaw in mankind (sin) and deal with it to escape death. BUT we all know no one escapes the Grim Reaper. These religions rid their adherents of this curse by some form of religious rules, rituals, practices, etc. Man rescues himself from death. In some religions, it may require the help of a deity, but a human effort of some kind is the key to defeating death. In Hinduism, for example, you go round and round in reincarnation until you achieve Nirvana. In Islam, die a martyr and you get to heaven and get 72 virgins. In Judaism, one lives as close as they can to God’s law and you might get into heaven if you’re good enough. Christianity holds a very different view. Next week we’ll explore the uniqueness of Christianity
LESSON: Non-Christians hold two views on God and redemption. Either God is not relevant OR reconciliation with him can be achieved by some human effort. Christianity is VERY different! God rescues mankind. My books available at http://yourchristiananswers.com
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