30 Days to Understanding the Bible Session 15

Faith Church May 1, 2004

Today we are going to cover chapter 26 in our book.

Introduction:

 

Here is the question we are trying to answer at least in part today. . . “Are all religions the same? And what are the distinctives of Christianity that set it apart?”

 

Now, let’s just take a look at some of the following Biblical verses and ask this question, “What does the Bible say in regard to multiple ways to deal with the human condition?”

(Matt 11:27, John 3:18. John 6:29, John 8:24, John 14:6, Acts 4:12)

For human sickness there is one specific remedy and this is it.  There is no other.

 

 

INPUT:  What would you say to the argument, that Christianity’s claim of exclusivity eliminates other equally sincere people who are seeking God through other religions

(The faulty assumption behind this argument is that sincere people cannot be wrong.  Probably all of you have been sincerely wrong before)

 

INPUT:  How would you answer someone who said “Well Christianity is right for some people but it may not be right for all people”  (The assumption is that truth is determined by one’s beliefs or lack of beliefs.  The error is that while subjective preferences do vary truth is not subjectively determined.  For instance, the law of gravity is true regardless of whether you think it is right our not)

 

 

INPUT:  How would you answer someone who said, “Anything so narrow must be wrong.  You are intolerant”

(read pg. 209 under #3)

 

INPUT:  Now let’s say you have an opportunity to discuss these things with someone,  what are some principles that you need to remember so that you don’t get in arguments, and so that you don’t be needlessly offensive.  (From the book)

 

(1)  First Understand well your own faith.

You must be able to articulate your faith to yourself before you can fully explain it to others

 

(2)  Second , recognize truth in other religions

Probably all other religions have some level of truth in them, and to deny this is to deny factual accuracy and intellectual honesty.

 

(3) Consider your motives

When we proclaim God’s truth we must beware of the following motivations and behavior (1) scalp hunting—being focused on getting “a decision” (perhaps, in part, to glorify ourselves) and forgetting that we are but one link in the chain of transformation (see1 Cor. 3:5-7)  (2) Manipulation—using high pressure salesmanship instead of the simple, honest sharing of the gospel message,  (3) arrogance—forgetting God’s grace in reaching out to us, and that we too are sinners

 

(4) Fourth set limited Goals for the discussion

WE should aim for clear communication and understanding.  We cannot argue someone into heaven;  the Holy Spirit must produce the response of faith to his word.  Be positive and focus on proving Christianity rather than disproving other’s religion.  WE share the message of salvation in an attitude of prayer and reliance on the Holy Spirit to work in us and the hearer, leaving all the results with God.  Only He can save.

Faith Church