Do All Religions Lead To God?

The number of religions in the world makes it challenging to know which one is correct. With so many belief systems to consider and the claim that all religions lead to God, many people who are earnestly seeking the truth about God are confused. The end result is that some seekers despair of ever reaching the absolute truth on the subject, or they decide to embrace the universalist claim that all religions lead to God. Of course, skeptics argue that the existence of so many religions is proof that no one can know God or that God simply does not exist.

We first must ask: Does absolute truth exist? If it does not, then we really cannot be sure of anything (spiritual or otherwise), and we become agnostics, unsure if we really know anything, or pluralists, accepting every position because we are not sure which, if any, is right.

Absolute truth is defined as that which matches reality; that which corresponds to its object; telling it like it is. Some people say there is no such thing as absolute truth, but taking such a position becomes self-defeating. For example, the relativist says “All truth is relative,” yet one must ask: Is that statement absolutely true? If so, then absolute truth does exist; if not, then why consider it? Postmodernism affirms no truth, yet in doing so, it affirms at least one absolute truth: Postmodernism is true. In the end, absolute truth becomes undeniable.

Further, absolute truth is naturally narrow and excludes its opposite. For example, two plus two equals four, and no further answer is possible. This point is essential when comparing different belief systems and world views. If one belief system has components that are proven true, then any competing belief system with contrary claims must be false. Also, we must keep in mind that absolute truth is not affected by sincerity and desire. No matter how sincerely someone embraces a lie, it is still a lie. And no desire in the world can make something true that is false.

Romans 1:19–21 contains the biblical explanation for why there are so many religions. The truth of God is seen and known by every human being because God has made it so. Instead of accepting the truth about God and submitting to it, most human beings reject it and seek their own way to understand God. This leads not to enlightenment regarding God, but to futility of thinking. Here is where we find the basis of the “many religions.”

Many people do not want to believe in a God who demands righteousness and morality, so they invent a God who makes no such requirements. Many people do not want to believe in a God who declares it impossible for people to earn their own way to heaven. So they invent a God who accepts people into heaven if they have completed certain steps, followed certain rules, and/or obeyed certain laws, at least to the best of their ability. Many people do not want a relationship with a God who is sovereign and omnipotent. So they imagine God as being more of a mystical force than a personal and sovereign ruler.

The existence of so many religions is not an argument against God’s existence or an argument that truth about God is not clear. Rather, the existence of so many religions is demonstration of humanity’s rejection of the one true God. Human beings have replaced Him with gods that are more to their liking. This is a dangerous enterprise. The desire to recreate God in our own image comes from the sin nature within us—a nature that will eventually “reap destruction” (Galatians 6:7–8).

All religions do lead to God. All but one leads to His judgment. Only one—Christianity—leads to His forgiveness and eternal life. No matter what religion one embraces, everyone will meet the one true and living God after death (Hebrews 9:27). All religions lead to God, but only one religion will result in God’s acceptance, because only through His salvation through faith in Jesus Christ can anyone approach Him with confidence (John 14:6).

If There Is A God, Why Is There So Much Pain And Suffering?

If you haven’t asked this question or heard it asked, you will. The fact that pain and suffering are prevalent in this world seems absolutely incongruous with the concept of a loving and omnipotent (all-powerful) God.

The problem can be expressed this way: (1) If a loving and all-powerful God exists, and He wants to deliver mankind from suffering but can’t, then He isn’t all-powerful. (2) If a loving and all-powerful God exists, and He can deliver mankind from suffering but won’t, then He doesn’t love. (3) Therefore, a loving and all-powerful God does NOT exist, or God may exist, but evidently He is loving and weak, hateful and strong, or hateful and weak; He cannot be both loving and omnipotent and allow suffering to exist.

How does one explain the existence of evil in our world if God is both loving and omnipotent? In theology, an argument which attempts to solve this dilemma is called a theodicy (from theos/God + dike/just), which literally means justifying God. Can the idea of a just God be reconciled with the existence of evil? Brilliant minds have argued this point throughout the centuries, and the conclusions have varied—God does not exist, God is vengeful, God is weak, evil is illusionary and doesn’t really exist, and so on. Is there a reasonable answer to this?

The Scriptures reveal God as not only loving, omnipotent, omniscient (all- knowing), holy, and just but also longsuffering, patient, kind, and much more. His creation of all things was good. Repeated throughout the Creation account in Genesis 1 is the phrase “and God saw…that it was good.” His crowning creation was mankind—a man and a woman made in His image and after His likeness. This likeness was not physical, but moral and spiritual.

God created mankind with intellect, emotions, and volition (a free will). Adam and Eve were created with the ability to exercise their will through choices. They were not created with false intelligence, without emotions, and programmed to behave a certain way. They were not created as animals with instinctual behavior. Human beings could think, reason, and choose their course of action accordingly. The possibility of the entrance of evil into the human experience was a consequence of our being created as free moral agents. Had we been created without a free will, without emotions, and programmed with false intelligence, perhaps sin could have been avoided.

Why didn’t God destroy His creation as soon as sin entered the picture? Like most why questions, that is difficult to answer, for who can comprehend the infinite mind of the Creator? Clearly, He doesn’t operate on our time scale. Perhaps He is allowing evil to run its course in order to destroy it once and for all. And He will destroy it, as recorded in Revelation 20:7–15. The last two chapters of the Bible, Revelation 21 and 22, describe life without sin.

A good answer to the issue of reconciling a loving and omnipotent God with the existence of evil in mankind is that God created human beings with a free will, yet without sin. Inherent in having a free will is the possibilityofrebellionagainst the loving Creator. Adam and Eve eventually chose to rebel, and they fell into sin as a just punishment for their decision to disobey God.

Though Adam and Eve were created with innocence, they chose sin, and sin became part of their nature. That sin nature has been procreatively passed on to every one of their descendants, as is revealed in Romans 5:19, “…by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners,….” Sin has existed in the human experience ever since Adam and Eve fell, hence the overwhelming magnitude of pain and suffering. But God will eventually destroy it.