If Christianity is the one true religion why is there an Allah and other
names for religions? For example, are there other religions that follow
God and Jesus but just have them with different names, and how do we know
which ones they are or aren’t?
There is a common philosophy of religion which, in essence,
would work on the premise that “all religions are more or less the same
and lead to the same place.” This is a very shallow belief. It is
impossible to defend if one looks carefully at world religions.
One of the reasons that this philosophy has gained acceptance
is the somewhat deceptive fact that the “morality” of all world religions
is, at least from a shallow look, quite similar. All world religions, at
least on the surface, teach that lying, stealing, anger, adultery, murder
and so forth are “wrong” and that loving people, being unselfish, seeking
the good of others and so forth is “right.” If religion is viewed as a
list of right and wrong things to do, there is some truth in the claim
that all religions are similar.
This being granted as true (if one looks in detail, even this
similarity begins to fall apart, but never mind that), there is a very
important reason that the claim that all religions are more or less the
same falls completely flat. Religion is not about a list of rights and
wrong, but it is about theology. Religion is about the nature of reality,
deity, the power which controls human destiny, ultimate purpose in life.
If one looks at “Allah” (I am assuming by this you mean the religion
Islam) or at Hinduism or Buddhism, Jainism, Ba’hai and other world
religions, one will find that it is absolutely impossible to see these as
alternative forms of what is known as Christianity. If the Christian
religion is true, then there is one God and only one way to come into a
relationship with that God–through faith in the saving power of the blood
of Jesus. (Romans 3:23-26, for example). If we come into a relationship
with the Creator through the blood of Jesus, shed on the cross, then we
definitely do not come to know God through the eight-fold path of Buddha
or through overcoming evil karma (Hinduism) or through submitting the will
to Allah (Islam), or through any other system of religion. If Islam and
the Koran, the holy book of Islam is true, then the Jesus taught in the
New Testament is a lie and a sham. This is true because the Koran teaches
that Jesus did not die on a cross. If the New Testament is the Word of
God, then Hinduism, Jaina, Taoism and the other “isms” are false
religions. No amount of comparative religion will change this fact.
Bottom line, though some would call this a closed-minded
statement, in the words of Peter in Acts 4, concerning Jesus, “There is no
other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved.” No,
other religions definitely do not accept Jesus as Lord and Savior.
Shallow similarities do not cover over the fact that the claims of Jesus
Christ preclude all other religions. That is the end of the story.
Now, whether you would be a Christian, versus seeking God
through another religion should be based on your clear study and
understanding of the truth as it is supported by the evidence.
Christianity has the fulfilled prophecies of the Old Testament. It has
the historically verified miracles. It has the historical foreshadows.
It has the fact of the resurrection of Jesus from the dead. (all of these
are thoroughly documented and explained in numerous articles at this web
site, and summarized thoroughly in my book Reasons For Belief
www.ipibooks.com) I am absolutely convinced that all these evidences
clearly point in only one direction. The Bible is the Word of God and
Jesus is the Son of God–the savior of the world. Salvation is to be
found nowhere else but in the Jesus of the Bible. That is my conviction.
If you have specific questions about other world religions, please feel
free to ask.
John Oakes, PhD