As we are coming up to Easter this is the time of year when more people stop to think about the most central elements to Christian faith, the Crucifixion, Atonement and Resurrection of Jesus Christ. Jesus died on the cross to atone for our sins and on the third day was raised from the dead. However, this is not the only view on the subject. Many religions and cults speak about Jesus and hail him as Messiah, Son of God, Prophet, or a Good Teacher. Many even speak about the Easter weekend and its significance, but in all cases I could find, one of the most defining lines of difference between them and Christianity came in their denials. Some deny that Jesus’ death on the cross truly atoned for our sins. Some deny that Jesus bodily rose from the dead. Some deny that Jesus was even crucified at all.
As examples of this:
MORMON – “And I say unto you again that he cannot save them from their sins; for I cannot deny his word, and he hath said that no unclean thing can inherit the kingdom of heaven; therefore, how can ye be saved, except ye inherit the kingdom of heaven? Therefore, ye cannot be saved in your sins.” [The Book of Mormon, Alma 11:37]
“For we labor diligently to write, to persuade our children, and also our brethren, to believe in Christ, and to be reconciled to God; for we know that it is by grace that we are saved, after all we can do.” [2 Nephi 25:23] (Emphasis mine)
CHRISTIAN – “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” [John 3:16]
JEHOVAH’S WITNESSES – “Jesus remained faithful until death – a cruel and painful death at the hands of his enemies. (Philippians 2:8) Consider what he endured on the last day of his life as a human. He was arrested, accused by false witnesses, convicted by corrupt judges, laughed at by mobs, and tortured by soldiers. Nailed to a stake, he took his last dying breath, crying out: “It has been accomplished!” (John 19:30) However, on the third day after Jesus died, his heavenly Father resurrected him back to spirit life. (1 Peter 3:18) A few weeks later, he returned to heaven. There, he “sat down at the right hand of God” and waited to receive kingly power. (Hebrews 10:12, 13)”
[This quotation was taken from the Jehovah’s Witnesses publication “What does the Bible really teach, Chapter 4, paragraph 21] (emphasis mine)
CHRISTIAN – “While they were still talking about this, Jesus himself stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you.” They were startled and frightened, thinking they saw a ghost. He said to them, “Why are you troubled, and why do doubts rise in your minds? Look at my hands and feet. It is I myself! Touch me and see; a ghost does not have flesh and bones, as you see I have.” When he said this, he showed them his hands and feet. And while they still did not believe it because of joy and amazement, he asked them, “Do you have anything to eat?” They gave him a piece of broiled fish, and he took it and ate it in their presence.” [Luke 24:36-43]
ISLAM – “And because of their (falsely) claiming, “we did kill the Messiah, Jesus son of Mary, the (false) Messenger of Allah,” whereas they killed him not, nor did they cause his death by crucifixion, but he was made to them to resemble (one crucified to death). Verily, those who differ therein are certainly in (a state of) confusion about it. They have definite knowledge of the matter but are only following a conjecture. They did not kill him, this much is certain (and thus could not prove the christ as accursed).” [Quran 4:157]
CHRISTIAN – The account of the Jesus’ crucifixion and death are recorded in all four gospels; Mathew 27 – “When the crucified him, they divided up his clothes by casting lots. And sitting down, they kept watch over him there. Above his head they placed the written charge against him: This is Jesus, The King of the Jews.” [Verses 35-37]
Mark 15 – “It was the third hour when they crucified him.” [Verse 25]
Luke 23 – “When they came to the place called the Skull, there they crucified him, along with the criminals-one on his right, the other on his left.” [Verse 33]
John 19 – “Carrying his own cross, he went out to the place of the Skull (which in Aramaic is called Golgotha). Here they crucified him with two others-one on each side and Jesus in the middle.” [Verses 17-18]
I know that Jesus sacrifice on the cross was enough; nothing else is needed to atone for my sins. On the cross Jesus said, “It is finished” (Jn 19:30). We are saved by grace alone, (Eph 2:8-9), through faith alone, (Rom 4:5, Eph 2:8-10), in Christ alone, (Jn 14:6, Acts 4:12).