Sunday, 12 May 2013

The exclusivity of heaven

There is a very prominent view in Northern Ireland society today that everything we do must be inclusive. Catholic and Protestant must be brought together in education and social venture. Every event organised by local councils must be branded as being inclusive, no-one should be left out. Right across the United Kingdom and indeed across the world, the message that is promoted is that all religions are to considered of equal value, each offering its own way to God. To suggest that there is only one way to God, that certain lifestyles are incompatible with Christianity, and that not all are worthy of heaven is to be a bigot, to be narrow minded. Or so we are told.

Although this view is prominent in society, and even in many Christian circles today, such a teaching is contrary to scripture. That there are many ways to heaven and that we should be inclusive is our views is politically correct and popular, yet it is not the view of the bible. Jesus Christ said in John 14:6 that ‘I am the way, the truth and the life, no man cometh unto the Father but by me’. Heaven is not inclusive but exclusive, it is not open to those professing all faiths or none, but to one faith alone; that which is founded in Jesus Christ and his all sufficient sacrifice for sin.

The way of life is narrow, not broad, for Revelation 21:27 makes it very clear that there is a great restriction on entrance into the kingdom of God; ‘And there shall in no wise enter into it any thing that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie: but they which are written in the Lamb's book of life'. Only those who ‘are written in the Lamb’s book of life’ will be admitted, but all others will be excluded from the presence of the Lord forever, not because of class or race or creed, but because of their sin. All of mankind, without the cleansing blood of Christ, is defiled in the sight of God, working iniquity, and bringing upon themselves the judgement of God. Such a condition leaves them outside of the kingdom of heaven, and there are no exceptions. There is no salvation  or forgiveness of sin to be found in the religions of Islam and Buddhism or any other of the worlds religions, nor in the nominal observance of Christianity. Whilst heaven is not exclusive to a particular denomination it is still exclusive to those who have been washed in the blood of Christ, those ‘whose hope is in the Lord his God’.

The question for you then is will you gain access to the kingdom of God? Have you been redeemed by the precious blood of Christ or will you be counted among those who shall ‘in no wise enter into it'? The rules concerning our entrance into God’s kingdom are not flexible but the same for all men. You cannot barter your way into heaven, there is but one way, through God’s own Son, the Lord Jesus Christ. If you trust in him today then you will be brought into that family of God, and partake of all the benefits which are exclusively bestowed upon his children. If not, then you will be barred from heaven and the presence of God for all eternity.

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