Day 13: A Seemingly Arrogant Claim – Part 5b

Could Jesus be the only way?

Bible References (NIV)

Devotional

Have you ever agreed to do something just to keep the peace? While there are times when it is wise to compromise, it’s also important to know when we should not.

Jesus made some big and bold claims. In the two verses we read again today from the Gospel of John Jesus claimed to be the only way to know God and the only Saviour of the world. These are very big claims. How might we assess their truth?

If God did visit as a human — like the Old Testament predicted would happen (Isaiah 9:6-7; Daniel 7:13-14), what would we expect him to be like? Powerful and assertive — or humble and loving? Many of the Bible’s predictions Jesus fulfilled are surprising because they reflect the latter — though he did also do great miracles. Consider Isaiah 53 and Psalm 22 which we read together in prior devotions. There is already more than enough evidence for a rational person to take a serious look at Jesus.

However, if he were God, we would expect him to be unique in more ways than this. The video clip you are about to watch summarises some of the most remarkable distinctives of Jesus amongst the world’s major religions and their leaders. Jesus stands out in his claims, in his claimed mechanism for our salvation and in his teachings. No matter which angle we look from, Jesus stands out.

We could then consider Jesus’ miracles — which are unique if we study the topic. We might then consider his resurrection — which both Jesus and the Old Testament prophecies predicted. Historical evidence also supports the idea of his resurrection — to the point where secular academics generally agree there were post-death appearances of Jesus by some means. The resulting impact of his life for good within human history through his followers then puts the icing on the cake. As the broadcaster D James Kennedy put it, “I am far within the mark when I say that all the armies that ever marched, all the navies that were ever built, all the parliaments that ever sat and all the kings that ever reigned, put together, have not affected the life of men and women upon this earth as powerfully as this one solitary life.”

Jesus is remarkable and unique in many ways.

In Exodus 20 you read the 10 Commandments. The first 4 are about our relationship to God. The following 6 are about our relationships with one another. One of the boundaries God gives within these commands is that only he — the Creator of the universe — is ever to be worshipped.

The actual God of the universe is logically the one who created the universe and us. Jesus claimed to be the only way to know the Creator God. This claim is either true or false. The evidence either supports this claim or it doesn’t. So, what does the evidence suggest?

Video clip: A Seemingly Arrogant Claim – Part 5b— 5mins

Reflection questions

  • What are some of the ways Christianity and Jesus stand out amongst the world’s various religions?
  • What story or illustration might you be able to share with someone who seems to think all religions to be the same?
  • What might be important about our manner when discussing this topic with others?
  • What questions could you potentially ask — instead of making statements, to cause people to think about what might be true?

For prayer

“Lord Jesus, we stand in awe of the impact you had through your brief life on Earth. To think that a mere 3 years of ministry could be enough to reveal what you are like, to impart teachings, to perform miracles, and through all this to generate a movement that would change the world for the better is beyond our imagination. You are a truly great God. Thank you.”

related topics

coming up in our next devotion

Day 14: A Seemingly Arrogant Claim – Part 5c

One of the most surprising things about Jesus is the fact that he didn’t gain any of his influence as the result of an earthly position given to him. Jesus wasn’t the ruler of an Empire – like Julius Caesar of Rome or Alexander the Great who led the Greeks. He was instead born into relative poverty and obscurity.

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