I'm home-schooling the kids now and this past week we've started learning about different religions. One of the books I'm using is the The Usborne Book of Peoples of the World. I like the layout and it is very informative.
Under Christianity it had relatively good information and then I came to this line: "Christians believe that Jesus rose from the dead and now lives with God in heaven. They believe that if they lead good lives they too will go to heaven when they die."
Is that why we are going to heaven, Christians? If we are good? I would guess most non-Christian people would describe Christianity this way and probably don't see any problem in what I've quoted up there. In fact, I've started to realize that many Zambian Christians and even many American Christians wouldn't blink an eye at that above statement.
Here's the problem.... that's NOT the gospel of Jesus Christ!!! Christ said nobody is good but God alone. My list of good deeds in this life is NOT why I will be in heaven someday. The Bible very clearly teaches that it is by faith in Jesus Christ and his righteousness that we are saved, so that none of us can boast. No matter if I lead a very good life... if I haven't trusted in the goodness of Jesus, I will NOT be in heaven with him someday. Period.
That is what sets Christianity apart from other religions of the world. Buddhists, Hindus, Muslims, Mormons, JW's, Jews.... everyone is just trying to follow their set of rules and be good enough. But Christ taught that none of us would ever measure up to God's perfect standard no matter how hard we tried. He came to fulfill the standard in our place and then die in our place. Can I get an "Amen" anybody?
Christians, if you are trying to be very very good everyday so that you can have a good enough resume to get into heaven, well you are in for a surprise. Your resume stinks. Nobody is impressed with you, especially not God! It is by faith that we are saved so that none of us may boast. Cling to Christ. Throw all of your eggs in that basket because it is Jesus Christ alone who saves!!!!
PS... Usborne Books... get your facts straight!