I’m sure you’ve probably seen the “Coexist” bumper sticker. If not, it’s basically a bumper sticker that supports the idea of acceptance. According to those who have this bumper sticker, we should be tolerant of everyone’s beliefs, no matter what religious group they may be connected with. The symbols on the sticker represent all the major religions (including Christianity, Islam, Judaism and Wicca). According to these individuals, we are all on different paths to the same place and therefore need to accept the beliefs of all others.
I have only one problem with this idea: it’s not what the Bible teaches. According to the Bible there is ONE Gospel. When Paul wrote to the Galatians, he reminded them of this point. Here’s what it says:
“I am amazed that you are so quickly deserting Him who called you by the grace of Christ, for a different gospel; which is really not another; only there are some who are disturbing you and want to distort the gospel of Christ. But even if we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to what we have preached to you, he is to be accursed! As we have said before, so I say again now, if any man is preaching to you a gospel contrary to what you received, he is to be accursed! For am I now seeking the favor of men, or of God? Or am I striving to please men? If I were still trying to please men, I would not be a bond-servant of Christ.” – Galatians 1:6-10 (NAS)
There is one Gospel. No matter what any other person may say, it is only in Christ that we can receive eternal life. And though the “Coexist” bumper sticker pushes for unity, it is only in Christ that we can find true unity. Jesus was called the Way and that’s exactly what He is. He’s not a way. He’s not one of many ways. He is the Way. That is where unity is found.
These ideas were also presented in a sermon I preached in chapel at Bear Valley. Feel free to listen to it here.