by Kevin Rutherford


When the apostle Paul visited the city of Athens he recognized that the people of that city were very religious (Acts 17:22).  After noting that fact he then proceeded to show the people of Athens that they were wrong religiously and needed to repent (Acts 17:23-34).

The United States of America is “very religious.”  Let us note the fact and then seek to correct the religious error that abounds in this nation.  Many religious people in this country think it arrogant, rude, unloving, unethical, and immoral to suggest that other religious people are wrong.  The true church of Christ is often criticized for believing “they are the only ones going to heaven.” The prevailing notion in this nation and in most of the world is that a person should never suggest in any way whatsoever that another person’s religion is wrong.  This is not the approach Paul took as noted above.

Peter and John were arrested for preaching at the temple (Acts 4).  They were taken as prisoners before the Jewish Sanhedrin where they would be warned not to teach in the name of Jesus (Acts 4:18).  Prior to the warning Peter spoke about Jesus and said, “Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved (Acts 4:12).”  In other words, salvation is only in Christ (2 Timothy 2:10).  This is the truth!  This is the saving gospel message! Fail to preach it for fear of offending people and you will loose your soul!

Now let us make application of this fundamental fact of salvation.  Because salvation is only in Christ, then no one else can save you.  One cannot be a part of any religion founded by men and be saved.  Hinduism, Taoism, Buddhism, and Islam, etc. are man made religions that cannot save.  They have their origins with Satan and with men.  The destiny of any in these faiths is the same for that of the one with whom the religion originates.  Satan will one day be cast into hell (Revelation 20:10).

Because salvation is only in Christ we must understand that even those denominational churches which claim to follow Christ are lost.  They are outside of Christ because they do not obey Christ (Matthew 7:21).  They are outside of Christ because they are in churches founded by men and not Jesus (Matthew 16:18, 19).  While many (though not all) denominations have had their origin with sincere people they are sincerely wrong.  They are completely lost because they are outside of Christ.

What does it mean to be in Christ?  Consider the fact that the Bible teaches us that that Christ is the head of the church which is His body (Ephesians 1:22, 23).  The body is the church.  The body of Christ is the church of Christ.  There is one head (Christ) and there is one body (the church).  Paul said there is only one body (Ephesians 4:4).  Therefore, there is only one church.  The body of Christ is the church of Christ and one must be in Christ to be saved (2 Timothy 2:10).  I must be a member of the church which Jesus Christ established in order to be saved.  There is no salvation in any other.