Sermons

Summary: Do Christians really believe that salvation is found ONLY through Jesus Christ?

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There were a lot of things one could believe in in the ancient world…

• There were all manner of Greek or Roman ‘gods’ one could worship… just take your pick! Epicureanism was a common philosophy. So was Stoicism. There were all kinds of mystery religions and pagan worship ideas.

• There were all kinds of things one could believe in… just like today.

That’s why the principle we’re going to talk about today is probably the most controversial of everything we’ve said up to this point in this series: First Things First!

• Most people even in our day believe #1: there is a God. Even if they don’t believe in the Christian God.

• Many will even go so far as to accept #2: Jesus is His Son, even if they don’t understand what that means.

• #3: The Holy Spirit is Alive & Well… they’ll say “whatever—nobody understands the Spirit, anyway.”

• And they probably won’t give you much grief on #4: The Bible is God’s Word… even though they may not believe it actually came from God, most pay lip service at least to it as a book of potential wisdom.

• They certainly cannot deny the reality of the church; #5: The church belongs to God; even if we experience it in imperfect ways.

• But #6… THIS is where you’re going to be called all sorts of names if you actually believe this: …that Salvation is found in Jesus Christ… alone!

o Just get ready! You’re going to be called intolerant, close-minded, backwards, old-fashioned, un-enlightened, bigoted, etc!!!!

o Just imagine the gall! How dare you suggest that there is only ONE way to Heaven.

There are all kinds of things one can believe in today…

• All kinds of religions… from Islam to Buddhism! All kinds of philosophies… from Humanism to Scientology.

• It doesn’t matter what you believe… we’re all on the same journey, we’re just taking different paths, right?

• That’s what our world wants to tell us…But what Peter told that panel of religious leaders in Acts 4 has never been more true!

12 Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved." NIV

This great statement comes in the midst of a wonderful story in Acts.

• Peter and John have been out continuing the ministry of Christ… teaching the good news and healing the sick. In chapter 3 they came across a man crippled from birth.

7 Taking him by the right hand, he{Peter} helped him up, and instantly the man’s feet and ankles became strong. 8 He jumped to his feet and began to walk. Then he went with them into the temple courts, walking and jumping, and praising God. 9 When all the people saw him walking and praising God, 10 they recognized him as the same man who used to sit begging at the temple gate called Beautiful, and they were filled with wonder and amazement at what had happened to him. 11 While the beggar held on to Peter and John, all the people were astonished and came running to them in the place called Solomon’s Colonnade. NIV

• Peter knows a good opportunity when he sees it and so he starts preaching to the crowd in vs. 12. But all this preaching gets them into trouble… look down to chapter 4. The religious leaders are put out by Peter’s preaching about Jesus and the resurrection and so they throw them into prison. The next day they convene a panel and drag Peter and John to appear before them. And I love what Peter says as he is “filled with the Holy Spirit” (vs. 8)


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