Ask the Authors-Question #2

Posted: November 18, 2012 in Question and Answer

The following is a concise answer to a question asked of the authors of this blog, intended to give a simplified answer to the question asked.  If you also have a question you would like to ask surrounding the Christian faith, you may pose your question by visiting the “Ask the Authors” page.  The warranted belief email address will be provided where you can ask your question.

Sarah from Belgium asked:

How can we say that the Christian God is the true God?

Matt’s answer:

What does the Bible say?

A good place to start in determining what we can say about Christianity and God is the book that Christians consider to be the word of God Himself.  According to the Founder of Christianity, Jesus Christ, He is the way, the truth, and the life, and no one comes to the Father except through Him (John 14:6).  An early follower expressed similar sentiments when he said that there is salvation in no one else, and there is no other name by which to be saved (Acts 4:12).  In addition to the fact that there is only one way to God, there is only one God to find a way to (Isaiah 43:10-11; 1 Corinthians 8:4-6).  Furthermore, Jesus’ resurrection from the dead is not only a unique claim, but also the point at which Christianity can be shown to be either true or false (1 Corinthians 15:14, 17).  It is therefore significant that this claim “can be established with a reasonable degree of historical certainty” (Gary Habermas and Michael Licona, The Case for the Resurrection of Jesus, p.206).  For more information on the resurrection, see my articles on the historical evidence for Jesus’ resurrection.

What are the implications?

I think the issue is not so much what the Bible says, but the difficulty of condemning people of other religions, sincere as they might be.  Though I believe that God is just, this question casts doubt on that, especially when thinking about those who have never heard the gospel.  Well, as Michael Licona puts it, there is general revelation, in that God’s invisible attributes are in creation (Romans 1) and then there is specific revelation: the gospel.  If the general invitation is ignored, God is under no obligation to offer the specifics (Evidence for God, p.196-197).  It is easy to assume that if these people would hear, they would accept Christianity, but that is not necessarily the case.  If God knows the hearts of people (1 Chronicles 28:9; John 2:24-25), He knows who would choose Him under what circumstances, and we even have examples of God revealing Himself to “lost” peoples (Joshua 2; Jonah 1:1-2, 3:1-10; Acts 9, 10).  So, I believe we can both claim that our God is the true God and not feel like we have to apologize for it.

Short answer to a question that deserves a long answer

In answering the question, I have briefly discussed the biblical indications of the exclusivity of Christianity and the implications of that for the world as a whole.  However, I do recognize that the question deserves much more explanation in the details.  Thus, a more adequate answer would have to come in the form of a series of articles on the nature of the gospel and its exclusivity.  We have not written those articles at this point, but we have evaluated the major worldviews and have provided arguments for the existence of the God of Christianity.  What remains to be discussed are the implications of that being the case and that will have to wait until some time in the near future.

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