For the last few weeks we’ve been looking at the answers for common objections to Christianity. This week I want to look at the objection that it doesn’t matter what you believe, as long as you are sincere in your belief.
When you tell people that Christianity is the only way to heaven, they sometimes react by claiming that other religions save simply because their adherents ‘sincerely’ believe in their religion. This means that if you completely trust in your religion, it doesn’t matter whether it is objectively true or not. All that matters is whether it is true for you. And in our post-modern culture this idea is heard more and more often.
But the problem with this objection is that it says sincerity is more important than truth. But that is not logical. If someone believes that they can fly and jumps off a multi-storey building, it doesn’t matter how sincerely they believe they can fly – they will end up with a nasty surprise. It is the same with belief in how you are saved from your sin. If Allah doesn’t exist, it doesn’t matter how much you believe Allah will show you mercy for being a good Muslim.
And the Bible also makes clear that people are misguided if they sincerely believe a false god will save them. Isaiah says: ‘But those who trust in idols, who say to images, ‘You are our gods,’ will be turned back in utter shame’ (Isaiah 42:17).
So all religions must be carefully evaluated for objective truth. If you find an inconsistency or flat contradiction in a religion’s teaching, then you should be suspicious. You should not simply cover it up with ‘sincere’ faith. This goes for Christianity too. Christians should be using their minds and grounding their faith on a solid foundation of reasonable evidence. If a Biblical claim could be shown to be false, then you should abandon the entire religion. But thankfully good evidence for Christianity is found in the Scriptures. In the Bible we see solid historical evidence that we should trust Jesus with our souls. Namely, because Jesus was raised from the dead, we can trust in him for our resurrection too.
So do you think that sincerity is all that matters in a religion? Or do you recognise that you can be sincerely mistaken and eternally damned? Have you grounded your faith in the truthfulness of the Christian Scriptures?