We’ve been looking at the difference between Christianity and other major religions – particularly their teaching about how to get to heaven. Today we look at the Baha’ism World Faith.

The founder of the Baha’i Faith was a young Muslim from Iran known as Mirza’ Ali Muhammed (1819-50). He believed that he was a divine manifestation and the Bab (gate) leading mankind into a new era. After he was murdered, another man called Mirza Husayn’ Ali (known as Bah’a’ullah) claimed he was the next divine manifestation for the present age. Until 1957 the leadership of the movement remained within Bah’a’u’llah’s family and spread throughout the world. The numbers of Baha’i followers are small and there are only several Baha’i temples in the world, but there is one here in Sydney.

The Baha’i faith does not deny other religions, rather it claims that there is essential unity of all religions. But the final revelation is Baha’u’llah. One Baha’i teacher says: ‘Jesus was only one of nine manifestations of the divine being and appeared in His era of time to illumine those who lived at that time. Today Baha’u’llah is the source of revelation. Jesus was the way, the truth and the life for His time but certainly not for all times.’

Therefore it is no surprise that Jesus’ death on the cross as a substitute sacrifice for sinners is denied as the only way of salvation: ‘A Christian may find spiritual peace in believing in a substitutionary atonement. In Baha’ism this is unnecessary. That age is past. The new age of spiritual maturity has dawned through Baha’u’llah, and we are to listen to his words.’

Yet the Bible contradicts such a view – there is only one gateway to heaven and it is Jesus. ‘I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved.  (John 10:9)’. As for those of the Baha’i faith that attempt to be saved through another gate, Jesus says: ‘I tell you the truth, the man who does not enter the sheep pen by the gate, but climbs in by some other way, is a thief and a robber’ (John 10:1).

Have you entered salvation through the gate of Jesus by repenting of your sins and believing in his death for you? Or are you trying to enter through another gate like those of the Baha’i faith?

Joel Radford