Religion and Philosophy, both ancient and “new age”, have the primary focus, for the most part, to provide understanding of human life and to give purpose and hope to individuals as well as all of humanity. Even atheism, often inaccurately described by its followers as a “non-religion”, attempts to offer this same insight and provide purpose to humanity. Through these various and different beliefs, the ultimate aim of these world religions-philosophies is to simply give peace. The question that then arises is this: Which world religion-philosophy is correct?
I’ve had the blessing of knowing and learning from a great man, Robert M. Dobbins, my late grandfather. He came from a time when reading and thinking was a virtue. This was evident anytime a discussion arose concerning various topics, including politics, economics, science, and religion-philosophy. Not engaging in more discussions and absorbing more of his wisdom is one of the regrets I have from my youth. However, upon his passing, he left a great library full of knowledge that I’ve been able to enjoy. It’s from some of these books that I’ve been able to gain insight on the previously asked question, and now have made a firm conclusion. Christianity is different from ALL other world religions-philosophies and is the ONLY one to provide complete understanding to human life and lasting peace.
Aren’t all world religions-philosophies relatively the same? No, despite what many in our current Western societies promote, all religions-philosophies are not the same. But why do many in our society promote this “it’s all the same or relative” philosophy? I believe that the answer is by following the “it’s all the same or relative” philosophy, it gives individuals a reason to completely live for themselves and to create-decide their owns truths about life and humanity. Under the motto “the only thing forbidden is to forbid”, meaning there is no absolute truths, the followers live in ultimate freedom and peace. This sounds good, but it’s impossible to ultimately live with this simple understanding. In fact, the “forbidding to forbid” is an absolute statement, which is what it’s followers are trying to deny!
Many followers of this “it’s all the same or relative” philosophy believe that all the world religions-philosophies point to a similar, relative truth. However, I would argue that many (if not most) in this group have never read the Bible. I expect the majority have never read or studied the beliefs of Buddhism, Hinduism, or Islam. How can an educated conclusion be made without studying to answer the question, Which world religion-philosophy is correct? If you were diagnosed with cancer, would you take treatment recommendations from a person with no study or experience of cancer treatments? Of course not! Then why, when it comes to understanding life and finding purpose and peace, do so many of us listen and make opinions while being so uneducated?
While it may not be a cancer diagnosis, we will all face struggles, loss, and ultimately death in this life. When that comes, will you and I be able to face the challenges with understanding, purpose, and peace?
As a Christian, this is what I believe. God, the one and only and timeless creator of the world, created humanity to have a relationship. The relationship was hurt-broken because of humanity’s rebellion (sin), which leads to destruction and death in our world. However, God came to us as a man, Jesus of Nazareth, roughly two-thousand years ago. He was judged and killed despite being innocent (allowing us to live while being guilty of rebellion-sin), but He was resurrected to life and now lives eternally with God. By believing in Him, God restores our relationship and upon our physical death we will live eternally with Him in peace.
While other world religions-philosophies offer hope, Christianity alone can give assurance when answering the tough questions of life and purpose. Through the teachings and purpose of the life, death, and ressurection of Jesus Christ alone, can lasting and fulfilling peace be found.
“Faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.” Hebrews 11:1 (NIV).