Uniqueness is an underlying belief in evangelism and conversion. A religion indulges in evangelism because of its uniqueness. The three major religions, Christianity, Islam, and Hinduism are actively evangelizing religions. The New Age movement, highly eclectic in its structure, converts people into its fold. Even atheists evangelize their faith.
If all religions are same, why evangelize? A religion that converts people into its fold denies that all religions are same. So a vast majority of world’s population deny that all religions are same.
Relativism Will Destroy
Why should we be destroyed if all religions are same?
If all religions are same, then religions should not reject each other. However, major religions claim exclusivity.
Atheism rejects theism. Buddhism rejects Hinduism. Islam rejects all unbelievers of Allah. Historic Christianity rejects all the other religions – for only those who believe in Christ are saved. Ravi Zacharias said, “…even all -inclusive religions such as Bahaism end up being exclusivistic by excluding the exclusivists!” 1
Rejection occurs due to contradictions. Contradiction between atheism and theism is in the presence of God. While atheism denies God, theism posits God.
Both atheism and theism cannot posit truth at the same time, since they mutually contradict each other. Either atheism or theism could be true, certainly not both. So, how can an average person believe that both atheism and theism are right?
Consider contradictions between religions from another vantage point.
If all religions are same, we are mandated to believe in contradictions as absolute truth. Consider the perspective of Godhead:
- Historic Christianity claims that God is a trinity (Father, Son & Holy Spirit).
- God is one, and certainly not a trinity, asserts Islam.
- Hinduism claims that God is ‘Brahman,’ who manifests as Vishnu or Brahma or Siva. (Thus, Hinduism rejects both Islam and Christianity.)
- Atheism denies God’s existence.2
If a student asserts that 2+2 is 10, the student would be penalized for wrong answer. In our day-to-day life, we are expected to speak the truth. We will be penalized or insulted if we do not speak the truth.
However, in spirituality, we are urged to affirm contradictions as truth, based on relativism or relative truth or mind-dependent interpretation of facts. Therefore, those espousing similarity of religions mandate and promote hypocrisy, since their claim is predicated on relativism.
Relativism would destroy us.
Those believing that all religions are same (despite their innate contradictions) by virtue of subscribing to relative truth, should not fault their child for theft or lying.
For instance, a parent, who believes in relativism, should not fault the child for stealing money from them. Based on relativism, a child caught stealing implies the appropriateness to take money off the parent because what is seen as ‘theft’ by the parent is seen as a ‘means to satisfy need’ by the child. The child had a need, so he took money off the parent. Thus, by virtue of relativism, a child could justify a crime as a good deed.
If what is seen as crime in your eyes is a good deed according to others, then would this not destroy us? Is not terrorism an active example of relative truth in today’s world?
Terrorists believe they are right, whereas others believe that the terrorists are absolutely wrong. Isn’t terrorism, which is predicated on relative truth, destroying our world today?
Sin Against God Destroys The World
Mutually contradicting truth claims cannot be truthful at the same time. Those who claim similarity of all religions effectively imply that all religions are either false or truthful. Esoterism and /or deception could be means to this assertion.
Superior knowledge is required to affirm or debunk the truth claim of all religions. One could proclaim superior knowledge via divine revelation à la Mormon leader Joseph Smith, who claimed that his revelation superseded the former divine revelations. This superior knowledge could be esoteric if not elucidated with adequate clarity.
Conscious deception could be another means to the proclamation that all religions are same.
Baha’ism, the supposedly all-inclusive religion, believes that all religions are constantly evolving and each religion is in a particular stage of evolution. If this be true, we should have seen the evolution of Judaism, Islam, and Historic Christianity etc.
For instance, the Holy Scriptures of the religions – Bible, Quran, and Vedas – have remained the same. They have not evolved over a period of time. The understanding of the text may evolve, but the text per se has not evolved.
Since these foundational religious texts have not evolved over the past, why should we accept the claim that all religions are evolving? So isn’t it deceptive to sustain the claim that all religions are same because they would be evolving into similarity?
Whether it’s esotericism or deception, we would be destroyed if we agree to the assertion that all religions are same. Why?
We would be destroyed since the claim that all religions are same is a sin against God. When man sins consciously against God, he would be eternally destroyed.
Those proclaiming ‘all religions are same,’ are affirming all religions.
God, being just, does not tolerate affirmation or worship of false gods. The one true and living God condemns the affirmation and worship of false gods (cf. Amos 2: 4-5; 1 Corinthians 10: 21). Hence, a claim that all religions are same is a sin against God.
On the other hand, man plays God when he asserts that all religions are same. To state that all religions are same is to educate God, and of course man, that worship of the one true living God and other false gods are appropriate and coequal.
When man plays God, he assumes omniscience. But omniscience is an attribute of a pure and a perfect being, namely God.
Therefore, when man plays God, he sins against God, for playing God is to usurp God – albeit unsuccessfully. When man sins against God, he is doomed for destruction because of his conscious rejection of God and his active refusal to repent and believe in Christ.
Furthermore, claiming that all religions are same accuses God for having failed to reveal HIMSELF adequately and with clarity to mankind. This claim accuses God of inactivity while mankind was busy implementing their religions systems.
Moreover, the claim that all religions are same, accuses God of confusing mankind over thousands of years with systemic contradictions. But those contradictions, according to this claim (that all religions are same), are totally insignificant.
When an imperfect man falsely accuses the perfect God, the imperfect man would be doomed to an eternal separation from God, which is to the destruction of man.
Immoral / Amoral World Is Self-Destructive
Religions contradict each other. If all religions are same, there need be no specific mode of salvation. There need be no worship of God as well.
If salvation and worship of God is unnecessary, then morality, which ought to have its mooring in God for objectivity, would have no legitimate grounding. Morality then would have its feet firmly planted in midair.
So, an immoral (contradicting moral principles based on relative truth) or amoral (with no morality) world would be the legitimate consequence. An immoral or an amoral world is a recipe for disaster, since the reign of evil cannot be eliminated in this context. When evil reigns destruction ensues.
Therefore, if all religions are same, the world would be a disastrous place to live. Thankfully, a vast majority of the world do not believe that all religions are same, hence evil is mitigated. However, the truth remains that the Lord Jesus Christ is the only way, truth and life for all mankind.
1 Norman L. Geisler & Paul K. Hoffman, ed., Why I am a Christian: Leading Thinkers Explain Why They Believe, 303.