"Just Who Is Jesus, Anyway?"
So how do you know Jesus is the only way to God? I get that question a lot these days, especially from teenagers.
A lot of people have a lot of opinions these days. Many religious people, even Christians, want to say that Jesus was a good man, a religious figure, a revolutionary, even. But the only way to God?
That sounds so harsh and so intolerant, when you stop and consider the fact that there are billions of passionate Muslims and Jews and Hindus. They seem so sincere, so fervent in their faith.
Can all those people really be wrong?
The best way to answer this question is to strip away all the opinions and ask the Man Himself. What did Jesus say about Himself?
In the Gospel of John, Jesus said, "He that honors the Son, Honors the Father." (John 5:24). He claimed powers that only God could claim, such as the power to raise people from the dead. He claimed authority that only God could claim, such as the authority to work on the Sabbath, Judge all men's sins, and the power to forgive sins.
Even Jesus enemies knew what Jesus was claiming. That's why they killed Him. Jesus Christ was claiming to be one and equal with God. And he said, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me." John 14:6 (NKJV)
Jesus claimed to be God. He didn't leave the door open for any other possibilities. As C.S. Lewis, author of the Chronicles of Narnia, once said, "That is the one thing we must not say. A man who said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic — on a level with the man who says he is a poached egg — or else he would be the Devil of Hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God: or else a madman or something worse."
And we don't believe Jesus was God simply because He claimed to be God, but because He did things that only God could do:
- He lived a perfect sinless life.
- He fulfilled hundreds of prophecies, given centuries before He came to earth.
- He raised the dead.
- He rose again on the third day.
If you're a Christian, don't let the culture and the world tell you that Jesus was a nice guy, but not really God. If you're not a believer, I challenge you to read the Gospel of John, check out the claims of Jesus Christ, and embrace Him for who He is—your Savior.
Daniel Darling is an author and pastor with a passion for young people. He is the author of Teen People of the Bible, a 100-day devotional for teens. Visit him on Facebook by clicking here, or at danieldarling.com.