“Look unto Me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else” (Isaiah 45:22)
We follow a courageous and noble ancestry, we who belong to the God of the Bible. It’s a heritage of heroes who have gone before us – men and women who bravely insisted on the truth and faced down falsehood throughout the centuries, even at risk of the greatest loss. It has always been the way of God’s true leaders to either so speak of the truth that it becomes obvious that all else are lies, or to openly condemn the false for the deception that it is. This has always been the way of God’s men and women of faith.
When King Jeroboam foolishly, fearfully led the northern kingdom of Israel into idolatry (I Kings 12), the Lord didn’t waste any time in openly condemning that sham “religion” of Jeroboam’s own creation, calling it what it was and prophesying of the destruction of its altar (I Kings 13). And how did the Lord challenge Jeroboam’s phony religion? He sent a man – a “man of God” – a man who disregarded all personal danger and boldly confronted the lie of that false religious system. And a man who immediately found himself in great danger from a human perspective. It was a fearful day and a fearful place to be preaching what that unnamed man was called of God to preach. He was sent right to the bee’s nest carrying a stick with which to thump it. God called that man to boldly confront the menace of evil – to stare wrong in the face, and name it evil, and call it vrot. God called him to go and take His message right into the presence of the king, right to the powerful initiator of the whole mess, right into the temple of idolatry, right into the mouth of the lion. That took nerve! But the Lord God of heaven and earth was with him and gave supernatural deliverance.
When man, in his folly, devises false religion, God sends in his man to face it down and call it what it is – lies!
Let me test your Old Testament knowledge a bit further. You’ve heard or read of Gideon, right? What was the event that rocketed Gideon to a place of leadership in his day? Do you remember? Of course, the first notable event was God’s call on Gideon’s life to a place of leadership (Judges 6). The second was God’s command to Gideon to go flatten that all-too-popular altar to the phony god, Baal. Well, it didn’t take long for Gideon to get into a stack of trouble. The whole community was buzzing with indignation, and came looking for the one responsible for the vandalism. After all, what business was it of this young upstart to be condemning the religion of others and altering their altars, right? Live and let live, man! But that’s not the Lord’s way, folks – that’s Satan’s muzzle! Gideon was just man enough to do what the Lord told him to do.
We need to recognize a vital lesson from the Lord in biblical accounts such as these. We need to acknowledge that the Lord does not mess around when it comes to false religion. He does not mind knocking it down. He does not want us to be afraid to do so. The Lord does not want us to comfortably live with Satan’s counterfeits. He calls us to confront and condemn the false. He would not have us to allow fear of the unsaved to move us to cowering, close-mouthed compliance or tolerance.
The Lord commanded, in Psalm 37, “fret not thyself because of evil-doers” (vs. 1). Why? Because, “evil doers will be cut off” (vs. 9). And those who follow false religion are indeed “evil-doers”. They do evil when they reject and replace the truth of God’s words with their lies.
Or consider the Lord’s stirring counsel to His disciples in Matt. 10:28,
“And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.”
Fear God, not men! And remember the Lord’s assurance through His bold prophet Isaiah,
“Fear not, for I am with thee. Be not dismayed, for I am thy God . . .” (Isaiah 41:10).
Surely such assurances from the Lord must have filled Elijah’s heart when he confronted Baal worship and worshippers head-on at Mt. Carmel, and condemned it for the charade that it was (I Kings 18).
The New Testament book of Acts is where we see this biblical principle of intolerance of falsehood extending beyond just the borders of God’s covenant people of Israel. The Apostle Paul ministered for several years in the city of Ephesus, in western Asia Minor (modern day Turkey). In the process of preaching the gospel in that city, Paul was quite willing to include in the Lord’s message of hope in Jesus Christ alone, the Lord’s exposure and condemnation of the lie of idolatry, and of the worship of the goddess, Diana, in vogue at that place and time (Acts 19:26). Now many in that day were violently offended that Paul would so preach against idolatry, such as the popular worship of Diana, “saying that they be no gods, which are made with hands”. Wasn’t it true that the idolatry of Diana was much older than the worship of Christ in that city? It was a religion with an ancient heritage and a very popular following. Paul certainly had the right to disagree, but shouldn’t he have been a bit more sensitive toward the rights of others? Shouldn’t he have just proclaimed his own religious views and left well enough alone as to what others had chosen to believe? Doesn’t there seem to be an unhealthy dose of arrogance in one who would knock somebody else’s religion as he promotes his own? But we must remember that Paul was not advancing his own ideas, or his own private interpretations. They are the ideas of the true God of heaven! Eternal truths the only Lord of glory has recorded in His Book of books. And Paul lived in all good conscience before the Lord in his ministry.
Now let’s apply these thoughts to you and me in our own day. Does it not seem likely that the Lord would call upon the true church of our day, and of every age, to follow the same course His faithful ones have always followed? Where are the brave saints of God standing up to condemn the false religions of our own day, or so insisting on the truth that it becomes quite obvious that the false are indeed false? I think we do wrong before the Lord by holding our tongues. Timid tolerance and social correctitude are the devil’s doctrines more than God’s, designed to button our lips concerning obvious rights and wrongs. I think we do the unsaved a desperate disservice by refraining from due condemnation of the false, and not clearly affirming the exclusive truth of God’s Word. It is the doctrines of the evil one that have tongue-tied us, my Christian friends, and it seems to me it’s high time we cast aside his muzzle!
The Bible verse that impresses me is, Isaiah 45:22, where the Lord God of heaven proclaims,
“Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else.”
Now please slow up your headlong endeavor to put the reading of this little booklet behind you, and linger for a moment over this lucid statement from the Lord. Many things are quite obvious on the surface of it. To begin with, it’s a command. And the command is for all to look to the only God of the Bible for salvation. We can therefore assume some things – that all people are in need of salvation – that none will be saved without looking to the true God. The need of salvation, and the only true source of salvation become immediately clear, do they not? The lost condition of all without the Lord God of the Bible, and man’s utter dependence on Him are clearly expressed in this verse. And indeed the word “all” is used here. No one can find refuge in the hope that perhaps this “all” refers to all of Israel or all the whites or all the West. The Lord is clearly speaking to “all the ends of the earth” – every soul on this earth – to the farthest extremities – you, my friend!
“. . . for I am God,” He says, “and there is none else.”
But wait! What of those who bring offerings to their little Buddha idols over there in the Far-East? Shouldn’t we perhaps leave them to their own choices? No! Because Buddha is no god! Or what of those who worship their Allah or their Krishna? Alas, these too are no true gods! For “I am God”, says the Lord God of heaven, “and there is none else!” Some would insist that Allah and God are one and the same, but this is simply not true. The Bible and the Muslim Koran describe two very different beings, and they cannot both be God! The Allah of the Koran cannot be God, and God be God at the same time. Only God is God! Neither can any of the many false gods of the Hindus be God, and God be God at the same time.
“I am God, and there is none else.”
And only God’s truth, as found in the Bible, is truth, and all else that contradict are lies. And we can be most certain that the father of lies, Satan himself, is the ignoble author of it all.
God’s people are very quiet about this sort of message today. Nobody wants to be the one to say or write such “judgmental” things. Nobody wants to be “negative” when it’s so terribly fashionable to be positive. But can you not see what results when we’re unwilling to just come clear on this? Think about it! The man on the street does not hear the Lord’s people appropriately condemning the lying false religions of this globe. And precisely because he does not hear the true church clearly disapproving the wrong and insisting upon only God’s right, that man on the street begins to assume some things. He assumes the Lord’s people must be silent because they cannot rightly condemn other religions. And if the true church cannot condemn such contradictory views, then surely it must be because all the differing belief systems are in some way all quite acceptable. Each of those conflicting views must somehow be at the same time “true” for those who hold them. And there follows the conclusion that it must be that there are no fixed rights and wrongs, if opposing views can all somehow be “right”. The tragic result of it is that man no longer feels responsible for his arrogant neglect of the truth of God, through this strange, modern, broadened, false redefinition of truth and right. And a wave of shame sweeps over me when I realize that men have partly been led to that disastrous conclusion through the reticence of God’s own people, who know truth from error, but have spinelessly allowed themselves to be muzzled by popular fashion, and the evil one behind it!
As well, when the Lord’s people begin to join together in unity with other bogus belief systems, as is happening everywhere in the mixed up church of our day, this only adds weight to that same conclusion. Implied approval is granted to any number of false belief systems and lying “gods” today, through unity with such systems and their leaders, and through uneasy silence concerning their lies. It must be that they’re all, in some sense, O.K., thinks the man on the street. But they’re not all O.K.!
“I am God, and there is none else”, says the only true God of the Bible.
Do you see how folks are confused? Do you see how we’ve helped them to be confused? The unsaved looking on are perceptive. They believe what they see more than what they hear sheepishly spoken by a few. And what they’re seeing put into practice out there is that it doesn’t really seem to matter what you believe. There must not be any sharp lines between right and wrong, since nobody is drawing those lines anymore.
But the unalterable truth is, only God is God! And there is none else! All else that would claim to be gods are no gods – false gods – lying gods – phony gods, whose imaginary glories are sung by their lying prophets and preachers, and whose hapless followers are led by the scores into hell’s destruction!!
God is God, and there is none else. And salvation resides only in Him!
“Look unto Me, and be ye saved”, says the only God who is God, and the only God who can save, for “there is none else!”
In Acts 4:12 we read,
“Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.”
The only name implied in this Acts 4 passage is the name of Jesus Christ.
“For there is one God (and only one), and one Mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus” (I Tim. 2:5).
Jesus is God the Son. Yet He became man that He might provide a way for man to God. Man’s sin has created a vast gulf between himself and the holy God of heaven, an unbridgeable divide from man’s side. For this reason God became man, coming down to us, that He might make the way for man to God. Now Jesus says, “I am the Way, the Truth, the Life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by Me” (John 14:6).
Sin requires death by God’s demand. Therefore He who did not deserve death came to die in our place. Then Jesus rose from the dead, showing His power over death, “that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).
There is simply no other name on this earth whereby a soul can be saved from God’s certain judgment upon man’s sin . . . says the only true God of the Bible.
Who is good?
“There is none righteous, no, not one” (Romans 3:10)
Who has sinned?
“For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23)
What is the price of sin?
“For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord” (Romans 6:23)
Who paid the price for our sin?
“But God commendeth (shows, displays) His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8)
How can I be saved from the guilt and penalty for my sin?
“For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved” (Romans 10:13)
Lord, I confess that I am a sinner who deserves no mercy, but only Your righteous judgment…
I believe Jesus died in my place for all my sins…
I ask you to forgive me…
I receive Jesus as my own Saviour!