I’ve been reading the comments from so many people concerning the loss of Steve Jobs. He certainly was one of the most creative and technical minds we have seen in modern times. His contribution to culture is significant and I am thankful for all the Apple products I own and have owned through the years. My first computer was a black and white MAC cube! I love Apple and am a regular at the store.
But here’s what I noticed in all the blogging. Jobs was married in a Buddhist ceremony and talked about converting to Buddhism. Christians who commented regarding concern for his soul have been lambasted as being judgmental.
Christianity is a religion based on the premise that there is one way to God–through Jesus Christ. Christianity does NOT support many ways to God. So when a Christian questions the eternal place of someone who hasn’t made a profession of Christ, this is really the heart of Christian belief. The person is being consistent with the principles of his or her faith. If you believe what Jesus said–that He is the only way to heaven and eternal life, then it doesn’t matter how successful someone is on earth. The bigger issue is if they made peace with God through Jesus Christ.
This exclusive path to God is blasted for being intolerant, narrow minded. Christians are labelled judgmental when they do not accept multiple paths to salvation. But it is not Christians who get to decide the terms of eternity. God does that. In the Bible, He clearly says, there is no other way to God but through repentance of sin and acceptance of Christ as our Savior. Christianity is based on this belief–one way to heaven.
You can hate that, think it intolerant, judgmental or whatever. But it is the basis of the Christian faith. So for Christians, the acceptance of Christ as a personal savior, is the most important determinant of eternity. And when you believe this to be the cornerstone of your faith, you want your friends, family and the lost to know that Good News.
Christianity is not exclusive in the sense that anyone who believes on Christ is offered the free gift of salvation.
But the giver of that gift says, here are the terms:
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16).
“Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved” (Acts 2:21).
Jesus declared that the one whom he called Father is “the only true God” (John 17:3).
I am God and there is no other” (Isaiah 46:9)
“I am the way, and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6).
The concern expressed for Steve Jobs is not some horrible intolerance by Christians. It is Christians being true to their faith. Praying that Jobs made a confession of Christ.
Christians know that God will be the judge of all people one day. In the meantime, like it or not, it is our job to spread the Good News. Hopefully we do that through love, not judgment.