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Do You Believe Jesus Died for Nothing?

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By Dan Delzell, Special to CP
May 29, 2014|7:05 am

As you attempt to wrap your mind around the Christian message, it is important to come to terms with the Father's love for the Son. If the death of Jesus doesn't provide the only way into God's family as taught in Scripture, then the Bible contradicts itself and the Father's love for the Son is seriously called into question. After all, what father truly loves his son if he sends him to die for no good reason?

Christianity hinges on the fact that the Father not only "loved the world so much that He gave His only Son," (John 3:16) but also on the fact that "the Father loves the Son." (John 3:35) A couple chapters later Jesus said again, "The Father loves the Son." (John 5:20) And a little later Jesus said yet a third time, "As the Father has loved me." (John 15:9)

Now stop and think about this fact. It is critical if you are going to acquire a biblical worldview and a correct understanding of religion. There are those in our day who seem perfectly content with the theory that Christianity is just one of a number of good spiritual options. But that is simply impossible. Unless Christianity is the only way to the Father, then the God of the Bible is not truly as loving as He claims to be. After all, who would send his son to go through what Jesus went through unless it was the only way to rescue those who are lost?

God simply cannot be full of love and truth if Jesus is just one of many ways to the Father. Christ must be the only way, not only because He said so Himself, but also because Jesus made it clear in His teaching that the Father loves the Son.

Jesus said, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." (John 14:6) Now that makes sense and fits with the rest of Scripture. The death of Jesus and the Father's love for the Son cannot be joined together unless Jesus was absolutely correct about being the only way to the Father.

Christianity only makes sense if you stick to the truth that Jesus is the only way to heaven. Otherwise, you end up with a "God" who claims to love His Son, but who decided to provide one more path to paradise when it really wasn't necessary for our salvation. That crazy theory doesn't stand up under the weight and the pain of Christ's crucifixion.

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The apostle Paul understood this dynamic very clearly. He wrote these words through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit: "If righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing." (Galatians 2:21) That's the point isn't it. Christ cannot be just another path to paradise. If that were the case, Christ died for nothing. And if Christ died for nothing, the Father is not full of love and is not as wise as the Bible makes Him out to be. The Christian message and the message that "God is love" (1 John 4:16) hinges on the fact that Jesus truly is the only way into God's good graces.

The Father not only knew exactly what He was doing when He developed the plan of salvation, but He had you in mind when He decided to sacrifice His only Son. There was no other way for your sins to be forgiven.

And so God did the unthinkable. But it took all the love of the Father and all the love of the Son for it to come together. And this is why it is foolish to make the claim that Jesus is only one of the ways to heaven. That false claim contradicts everything the Bible teaches about God.

The Father dearly loves the Son, but the Father dearly loves you as well. That's why the Father sent Jesus to die for your sins.

So is Christianity the truth and the most beautiful demonstration of love ever given, or is it a contradictory religion with a confused god who needlessly sacrificed His only son? Your eternal well-being with your Creator is vitally connected to what you do with that question. You can either accept Christ as your Savior and follow Jesus the Messiah, or write him off as a false prophet who mistakenly believed his father really loved Him.

Do you believe Jesus died for nothing? Or was He sacrificed on the cross for your sins and for your salvation? One of those two things is fact, and the other is fiction. And your soul will either trust Christ, or go on without Him.

Or to say it another way: Would you like to see Jesus the way the Father sees Him? Or are you content to view Jesus the way the other world religions describe Him? You decide who you believe knows Him better. Those other religious teachers with their variety of religions, or His Father.

I will leave you with these words from Jesus: "I am one who testifies for myself; my other witness is the One who sent me – the Father." Then they asked Him, "Where is your father?" "You do not know me or my Father," Jesus replied. "If you knew me, you would know my Father also." (John 8:18,19)

So do you know Jesus and His Father, or neither one of them yet?

Dan Delzell is the pastor of Wellspring Lutheran Church in Papillion, Neb. He is a regular contributor to The Christian Post.
 

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