A Pew poll recently found that most people think that other religious are a good enough ticket to heaven. (This differs from what some in my childhood church taught, that Catholics are going to hell.) In general, that particular poll result is a good thing. While it’s unfounded to think that any religion offers eternal life, it’s better to think that any “good person” can get into heaven than to think that only members of one particular sect are so destined.
Cal Thomas’s response to the poll is so silly it’s hard to believe it’s not parody:
Do They Think Jesus Was a Liar?
I am shocked and appalled over a newly published survey by the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life. It finds most Americans believe there are many ways to salvation besides their own faith. Most disturbing of all is the majority of self-identified evangelical Christians who believe this.
Apparently they must think Jesus was a liar, or mistaken, when he said: “I am the way, the truth and the life; no man comes to the Father but by me.” Look it up. …
Look it up? You mean, in the standard Christian Bible? Gee, that’s helpful. Thomas urges Christian churches to fight heresy — yes, heresy! — “in their midst.” All we need is another round of heretic purging.
Even if one believes that Jesus is the exclusive path to salvation, it’s still possible to believe that Jesus would cut people a break for innocently believing other religious doctrines.
Thomas writes, “If there are many paths to heaven, Jesus suffered and died for nothing.” That’s not necessarily the case, even from a religious perspective.
Of course, if there are no paths to heaven, then Jesus did suffer and die for nothing.