Gracious Exclusivism

Theological pluralism—defined as belief in more than one Savior—is an acid that dissolves Christian faith. In "Still the Way, the Truth, and the Life" [December], John R. Franke rightly calls for an uncompromising commitment to Jesus' uniqueness as God and Savior on the part of all Christians. He makes a compelling case for the necessity of the absolute uniqueness and insurpassability of Christ.

At the same time, it's important to remember that this Jesus is universally present (John 1:9) so that, as the church fathers declared, all truth is God's truth. We as 21st-century Christians can say with the 2nd-century apologist Justin Martyr that there is truth to be found even among the pagans, because our Christ is not our possession. He is everywhere present and active by his Spirit.

Let's remember to distinguish between the truth of Jesus' uniqueness as Savior and the claim that Christians have a corner on truth. The former does not entail the latter.

Roger E. Olson
Professor, George W. Truett Theological
Waco, Texas

I appreciated the Christocentric approach that Franke took in his cover essay. He didn't objectify Jesus by making him simply the subject of propositional statements. Rather, he aims to move the church past debating orthodoxy vs. orthopraxy, so that both our beliefs and conduct are shaped by an unwavering focus on the "personal, active, relational, and gracious" Jesus. I appreciated the reminder that our role is not to prove the uniqueness of Christ, but rather to bear witness to it with our lives.

Sharon Autenrieth
Collinsville, Illinois

How could an article about Jesus as the Way, Truth, and Life say nary a word about Jesus' own assertion in that very verse that "no one comes to ...

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