March 22, 2015

A Pluralistic Jesus? – Don R. Patton

Posted in Uncategorized at 6:00 am by sranderson0103

The unreliable but dangerously popular reference, Wikipedia defines pluralism this way: “Religious pluralism the acceptance of all religious paths as equally valid, promoting coexistence.”

In 1991, the Pluralism Project at Harvard University began to lead a major effort to promote this idea. It is distressing to see all around us, how successful they have been. It should be a grave concern to Christians because Christianity is based on a stand for truth, the opposite of the warm, syrupy acceptance of “whatever” for the sake of niceness.

The teaching of Jesus is different.

“But he who practices the truth comes to the Light, so that his deeds may be manifested as having been wrought in God.” (John 3:21)

“God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.” (John 4:24)

“you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.” (John 8:32)

“Jesus said to him, ‘I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me.’” (John 14:6)

“Sanctify them in the truth; Your word is truth.” (John 17:17)

“… I have come into the world, to testify to the truth.  Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice.” (John 18:37)

Paul received truth by revelation and what was revealed to Paul contradicts pluralism over and over again. We will cite just a few of the many examples:

“For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who suppress the truth in unrighteousness,” (Romans 1:18)

“but to those who are selfishly ambitious and  do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, wrath and indignation.” (Romans 2:8)

“a corrector of the foolish, a teacher of  the immature, having in the Law the embodiment of knowledge and of the truth,” (Romans 2:20)

“For we can do nothing against the truth, but only for the truth.” (II Corinthians 13:8)

But we did not yield in subjection to them for even an hour, so that the truth of the gospel would remain with you.” (Galatians 2:5)

“You were running well; who hindered you from obeying the truth?” (Galatians 5:7 )

“Him, you also, after listening to the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation … (Ephesians 1:13)

“but speaking the truth in love, we are to  grow up in all aspects into Him who is the head, even Christ,” (Ephesians 4:15)

 “Stand firm therefore, HAVING GIRDED YOUR LOINS WITH TRUTH, and HAVING PUT ON THE BREASTPLATE OF RIGHTEOUSNESS,” (Ephesians 6:14)

“and with all the deception of wickedness for those who perish, because they did not receive the love of  the truth so as to be saved… 12 in order that they all may be  judged who  did not believe the truth, but   took pleasure in wickedness.” (II Thessalonians 2:10-12)

“who desires all men to be  saved and to  come to the  knowledge of the truth.” (I Timothy 2:4)

“…the church of the living God, the pillar and support of the truth.” (I Timothy 3:15)

“with gentleness correcting those who are in opposition, if perhaps God may grant them repentance leading to the knowledge of the truth,”  (II Timothy 2:25)

Perhaps the most obvious passage Paul wrote, diametrically opposing pluralistic tolerance of teaching that has not been revealed by God, is found in his condemnation of the conduct of the brethren at Corinth.

“But I am afraid that, as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, your minds will be led astray from the simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ. 4 For if one comes and preaches another Jesus whom we have not preached, or you receive a different spirit which you have not received, or a different gospel which you have not accepted, you bear this beautifully.”  (II Corinthians 11:3-4)

Perhaps other translations of the last phrase in this quotation, describing their offending conduct (the essence of pluralism), will make the point of this rebuke, inescapable.

“You seem to believe whatever anyone tells you,..;” NLT

“…you put up with it readily enough.” ESV

“… you submit to it readily enough.” NRSV

“…you may well put up with it!” NKJV

“…you’re willing to put up with it.” GWORD

“…you gladly tolerate anyone who comes to you…” TEV

Unfortunately, today you can be politically correct (pluralistic), or you can be a Christian (one who follows Christ) but you can’t be both.

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