Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Why Is Christianity Different from Other Religions?

Years ago, when my friend Nabeel was still a Muslim, my future wife (who was an agnostic at the time) came up to Nabeel and me while we were arguing about the resurrection of Jesus. Oddly enough, she said, "You're both right." I was arguing that Jesus rose from the dead. Nabeel was arguing that Jesus didn't rise from the dead. How on earth could we both be right?

While many atheists and agnostics are hostile to religious claims (and especially to Christian claims), some atheists and agnostics are a bit more friendly, regarding all religious claims as equally valid and meaningful for individuals, even if they're not objectively true. So if my religion teaches that Jesus rose from the dead, and Nabeel's religion teaches that Jesus didn't rise from the dead, we're both right, because religious claims aren't the sort of claims that are judged by normal standards of truth and falsity. What's true for me may not be what's true for you.

Needless to say, Nabeel and I were quite confused by Marie's statement. We didn't believe for a second that all religious claims were equal. We wouldn't have been arguing if we thought that!

Religions are not all the same. Christianity is different from other religions in two main ways: (1) what it teaches, and (2) what confirms it.

In the following video, Greg Koukl briefly discusses why the message of Christianity is different:

As for confirmation, God raised Jesus of Nazareth from the dead in order to confirm his teachings about his sacrificial death and divine nature. Christianity, then, has God's stamp of approval. Do other religions have anything like that?

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