Why Do Christians Claim that Jesus Is the Only Way to Heaven?

Posted by Worldview Warriors On Monday, January 20, 2014 4 comments

When I was first pondering what to write to take on this big question of why Christians claim that Jesus is the only way to heaven, the first things I thought of to answer it were, “because He is!” and “because He said so!” But don’t worry, I’ll give you some more evidence than that in this post.

The first thing to realize in answering this question is that we can’t get to heaven on our own. Last week I wrote about how God made the rules, since He created the world. God’s rules state that only a perfect person can go to heaven. None of us are perfect, because of the original sin of mankind. Romans 3:23 reminds us that, “... all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” This verse is pretty clear - none of us can live up to God’s standards on our own.

But, the next verses give us the way out of the punishment we deserve, which is death. Romans 3:24-26 says, “and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. God presented Christ as a sacrifice of atonement, through the shedding of his blood—to be received by faith. He did this to demonstrate his righteousness, because in his forbearance he had left the sins committed beforehand unpunished—he did it to demonstrate his righteousness at the present time, so as to be just and the one who justifies those who have faith in Jesus.”

Jesus Christ is the sacrifice of atonement for us (click the links to learn more about what those words mean). We need Jesus to stand in our place, because He is the only one who fits into God’s rules for heaven - He lived the perfect, sinless life that none of us can.

In case that isn’t clear enough for you, check out John 14:6: “Jesus answered, ‘I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.’” It doesn’t get much clearer than that, does it? Jesus is the way to the Father, the way to heaven. That’s really all there is to it.

Those who follow Christ, also known as Christians, believe all of this because we believe in the Bible. We believe that the Bible is our authority for life, because it came from God Himself. Because the Bible is the primary source of authority for those who follow Christ, we believe what it says.

Simply put, Christians claim that Jesus is the only way to heaven because the Bible tells us so.


Myron Shank, M.D., Ph.D. said...

Nicely written, but your target audience probably does not understand what you mean by "original sin," nor why it is relevant.

I agree with your general premise. However, not to quibble, but what is the destination of those who have been "born from above" ("anōthen," John 3:3,7; "anagennēsas," 1 Peter 1:3; "anagegennēmenoi," 1 Peter 1:23--in each of which cases the prefix "ana" should be understood in its sense of "up," the opposite "kata," "down," not in its sense of "again," as Nicodemas persisted in misunderstanding it in John 3:4,9, to Jesus' utter amazement in John 3:10)?

Is not "heaven," as an eternal destination, merely a misinterpretation of the New Jerusalem (Revelation 21:10-27) on the new earth? We will be with God, but he, in turn, will be in his tabernacle in the New Jerusalem (Revelation 21:1-5) "And I saw the new heaven and new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth went away, and the sea was no longer. And I saw the holy city New Jerusalem coming down out of the heaven from the God, having been made ready as a bride decorated [or "put in order"] [with reference] to her husband. And I heard a great voice out of the throne, saying, 'Behold, the tent of God [is] with men ["mankind"?], and he will live with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them, and he will wipe away every tear out of their eyes, and the death will no longer be there, both sadness and hard labor [or "suffering"] will not be there; the first things have gone away.' And the one siting upon the throne said, 'Look! I am making all things new [or "previously unknown"].' And he is saying, 'Write, because these words are faithful and true.'"

I welcome your response!

Myron Shank, M.D., Ph.D. said...

Browsing your blogs, I now see that you anticpated my "heaven" comments( New Jerusalem, February 11, 2013. http://worldviewwarriors.blogspot.com/2013/02/new-jerusalem_11.html)!

Good posts. I expect to be spending some time reading this site.

Katie said...


Thanks for reading! It does appear that you may have answered your own question by searching through the blog archives - is that correct? We did not write on the word "heaven" specifically, but as you pointed out, our posts on "New Jerusalem" cover that pretty well.

In addition, we have posts on "original sin" here and here to help our readers understand that concept.

Myron Shank, M.D., Ph.D. said...

Yes. The clarifying links are helpful for those whose background knowledge cannot be assumed.