This week we continued looking at the religion of Islam. This series is designed to investigate how true the beliefs and promises are from some commonly practiced religions.
On February 15, 2001 the Rock found out about the new building they are trying to purchase. A year later they began looking for an architect to work on the building. So they put out an RFP, which stands for request for proposal. With that an architect goes out and investigates the building to see what can be done with it, what design they would do, and then they present the proposal. From there the Rock can decide what proposal that each architect presents would be best for their new building.
Pastor Miles opened this week's message talking about the need for a Savior. This week we will put out a request for proposal for a Savior. Though many of us know what we believe and whom we believe in, it is helpful to understand why, and also see why we don't believe in something other than what we've found in Jesus Christ.
However, for those who have yet to make a decision about a Savior, interviewing these two candidates is necessary. Pastor Miles led us through five questions we should ask when interviewing for a Savior. So who will it be? Jesus or Muhammad?
Does your Savior know God personally?
The first question to consider when interviewing for a Savior is whether or not your Savior knows God personally. In Scripture Jesus Himself claims to be God. He was not a crazy person, He truly was God, and there are many Scriptures that support His claim.
John 5:19-22 states, most assuredly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of Himself, but what He sees the Father do; for whatever He does, the Son also does in like manner. For the Father loves the Son, and shows Him all things that He Himself does; and He will show Him greater works than these, that you may marvel. For as the Father raises the dead and gives life to them, even so the Son gives life to whom He will.
In John 10:30 Jesus states that, I and the Father are one.
Muhammad never claimed to be savior. But he claimed to be the greatest prophet of Allah. However, he never even spoke to God. He spoke only to an angel. It would be difficult to put all your trust in someone who has never spoken to God and does not know Him personally.
Does your Savior have any experience in the supernatural?
Jesus performed many miracles. His miracles were especially significant because they touched the lives of people personally. They weren't random or few and far between. His miracles served a specific purpose.
John 5:36 states, But I have a greater witness than John's; for the works, which the Father has given Me to finish - the very works that I do - bear witness of Me, that the Father has sent Me.
Muhammad never performed any miracles. It has been said that he ascended to heaven; and that he received revelation from God while spending 23 years in a cave. However, he never performed a miracle that touched someone's life. No one witnessed the miracles of Muhammad. Jesus' miracles delivered us from our sin and gave us new life. Muhammad can make no such claim.
Is your Savior available 24/7?
Our Savior Jesus Christ was sinless. He died on the cross and rose again. He died once for all sin. Muhammad was a sinner who died and remains dead. He is not available to anyone.
John 5:24-28 states, most assuredly, I say to you, he who hears My word and believes in Him who sent Me has everlasting life, and shall not come into judgment, but has passed from death into life. Most assuredly, I say to you, the hour is coming, and now is, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God; and those who hear will live. For as the Father has life in Himself, so He has granted the Son to have life in Himself, and has given Him authority to execute judgment also, because He is the Son of Man.
Jesus is God. Because He died and rose again, He is available to whomever, whenever. Paul verifies this in 1 Corinthians 15:3-8 which says Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures, and that He was seen by Cephas, then by the twelve.
After that He was seen by over five hundred brethren at once, of whom the greater part remain to the present, but some have fallen asleep. After that He was seen by James, then by all the apostles. Then last of all He was seen by me also, as by one born out of due time.
What lives has your Savior changed?
Jesus is the Messiah. He fulfilled hundreds of messianic prophecies. John 5:39 states, you search the Scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life; and these are they, which testify of Me.
Muhammad fills no messianic prophecies. What direct impact could Muhammad have on any one person's life except those that he encountered in his own lifetime? Jesus' impact transcends His life here on earth, because He is alive!
What does your Savior require to receive salvation?
Jesus offers salvation by grace alone. Grace is unmerited favor. Ephesians 2:8-9 says that it is by grace you have been saved, through faith-and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God-not by works, so that no one can boast.
Muhammad offers salvation by works. One who chooses Muhammad, as a Savior must live their life striving to fulfill many good deeds to out weigh their bad deeds so that he or she can earn salvation.
If you live your life striving to do good deeds and find your satisfaction there you are only bound for failure. Instead as Christians it is vital that we apply God to every area of our life. Our desire shouldn't be about striving to do more good things than bad, but rather doing things that honor God instead of things that dishonor Him.
All religions don't lead to God. Therefore, it is critical to know whom you will trust in to be your Savior, because only one can save you. Thankfully we can know a Savior who knows God intimately, who performs miracles, who is available to us, who has changed lives, and offers salvation as a gift and not by what we can do to earn it.