So everyone who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven, but whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven. Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I have not come to bring peace, but a sword.[Jesus Christ — Matthew 10:33-34]
Whether Buddhists or Hindus or Mormons or Muslims — pagans or heathens or atheists or agnostics. They have one thing in common. They neither know, love, nor worship the One True Living God and His Son Jesus Christ. Every cult and false religion and heretical denomination in this world are at odds with the Word and Truth of God — Jesus Christ.
That’s the thing about truth — it is by definition exclusive. For something to be true, it must be at the exclusion of all other options. There can be only one truth — not many. Truth must be objective, not subjective. Otherwise it ceases to be truth. Truth is outside our time domain. It is the standard that by necessity transcends our own vain imaginations, limited knowledge, and biased perspectives. It is immovable, immutable, and infallible. Truth is not defined. It must be discovered.
So that becomes the test. Of all the different belief systems, world religions and so-called “paths” to God, which one is true? Are they all true? Which one conforms to reality? Which one passes the test of authenticity? We have billions of people claiming to have discovered the true way and the enlightened path — even if that path is their own. We have a million ways of looking at God and reality, yet there can only be one true God and one true reality.
That is the absurdity of moral relativism and religious syncretism. In the pursuit of inclusiveness, you cut objective truth off at its legs and replace it with that which is right in your own eyes. You deny the Maker who gave you life and at the same time create a vain god in your own image.
Yet when it comes to the Person, work and teaching of Jesus Christ, we discover a man who claims to be God in the flesh and self-identifies as the Creator and Savior of the whole world. We discover a man who validates His claim through His manifest miracles, wisdom, power, and authority, and ultimately through His glorious resurrection from the dead.
We discover Truth is not just a virtue, it is a Person — embodied in Jesus Christ. He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. Neutrality is not an option. Either He is who He claims to be, or Jesus is a lying religious fraud who was mentally deranged for claiming to be the God of Israel incarnate and the Savior of the whole world.
The implications are paramount.
If Jesus Christ is NOT Lord of all, then at best He is a lying lunatic and at worst a deceitful devil from hell. If He lied about who He is, then why should anything He says ever be trusted? Why would anyone follow a dead charlatan?
Yet if Jesus Christ is who He claims to be, then He is Creator and Lord and therefore has designed all of reality and defined all true morality and has set the terms of eternity and ultimately judges the hearts and intentions of humanity.
His name — the name of Jesus — is ABOVE every name that is named and could not possibly be equal to any other name.
Let it be known to all of you and to all the people of Israel that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead—by him this man is standing before you well. 11This Jesus is the stone that was rejected by you, the builders, which has become the cornerstone. 12And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.[Acts 4:10-12]
In short — Jesus Christ is not an equal among peers. Jesus isn’t just another religious leader like Buddha or Mohammed or Darwin. He is the Wonderful Counselor, Almighty God, Everlasting Father, and Prince of Peace.
For this reason, I cannot and will not validate or associate with the modern COEXIST movement and mentality because in doing so I am reducing my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ to a status far below His true, eternal nature. Jesus is no mere man, offering one of the many paths to God. He is God, offering the one and only gift of eternal life.
Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, 10so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.[Philippians 2:9-11]
Let’s consider the COEXIST mentality, then. The idea that all faiths can unite for a common cause, putting our obvious differences aside for the common good. This is part of a broader world-wide interfaith movement. On the surface it sounds commendable and progressive, but there is one glaring problem for those who know and love Jesus Christ.
He is the only guest who isn’t invited to the table. Sure, some perverted, compromised version of Jesus has been included, but not the historical Jesus. Not the Biblical Jesus. Not the exclusive Jesus. Not the true Jesus Christ.
This is why it is so dangerous to see mainline Christian denominations and the Roman Catholic Church compromising the true gospel of Jesus Christ in the name of tolerance and the universal brotherhood of man.
Does the true Jesus coexist on the same level as other gods and prophets? Does Jesus belong in the same category? Does Jesus stand on equal footing?
According to COEXIST philosophy, He does.
According to Jesus and His gospel, He does not.
So Jesus again said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep. 8All who came before me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not listen to them. 9I am the door. If anyone enters by me, he will be saved and will go in and out and find pasture. 10The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly. 11I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep …
“I told you, and you do not believe. The works that I do in my Father’s name bear witness about me, 26but you do not believe because you are not among my sheep. 27My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. 28I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. 29My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand. 30I and the Father are one.”[Jesus Christ — John 10:7-11, 25-30]
Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, 26and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe this?”[Jesus Christ — John 11:25-26]
Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me … I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you had known me, you would have known my Father also. From now on you do know him and have seen him.[Jesus Christ — John 14:1, 6-7]
Jesus Christ belongs in a category all by Himself — God of gods, Lord of lords, King of kings, Creator and Judge. He doesn’t coexist alongside other gods. He is highly exalted above everything in all creation!
I ask that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you may know the hope of His calling, the riches of His glorious inheritance in the saints, 19and the surpassing greatness of His power to us who believe. These are in accordance with the working of His mighty strength, 20which He exerted in Christ when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly realms, 21far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in the present age but also in the one to come. 22And God put everything under His feet and made Him head over everything for the church, 23which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all[Ephesians 1:18-22]
I cannot in good faith affirm the COEXIST mantra because Jesus Christ does not affirm it. By affirming COEXIST I am fundamentally denying my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It is contrary to His nature and His gospel. He provides no other option.
Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters.[Jesus Christ — Matthew 12:30]
Jesus Christ is not a way of life. He is the Way of Life. He isn’t just another religious option. He is the One and Only Son of God and Savior of the World.
He did not come to bring peace but a sword because He will not share His glory with another. All who reject Him and refuse to bow the knee to Him are condemned already and remain under the wrath of a Holy God. Only by exclusively acknowledging Jesus Christ as Lord and believing in Him as Savior can anyone make peace with God and receive the promise of eternal life.
There is no other way, which is why Jesus Christ and His gospel cannot coexist with anything or anyone contrary to Him. For in the end, what does light have to do with darkness.
Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness?[2 Corinthians 6:14]
May the name of Jesus Christ forever be exalted to the praise of His glory. Amen!