Jesus' words, as they are recorded in scripture, are what Christianity is based on. Jesus'
words matter very much; Jesus said that no one gets to heaven except through Him! This is
a central doctrine of the Christian faith, as described by its author Himself. What does the
Bible tell us that Jesus said concerning salvation? Let us go to the word of God for that
answer. The following passages are shown in several translations. The emboldened
numbers shown above some words are the Strong's1 number for those words.
First, the idea that there is only one way to obtain everlasting life was a central part of
Jesus' teaching. In John 14:6 Jesus tells us that He is the only one through whom seekers
may find God.
(NIV 2) 6 Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No
one comes to the Father except through me.
(KJV 4) 6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life:
no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.
(NAS 3) 6 Jesus said to him, "I am the way, and the truth, and the
life; no one comes to the Father but through me.
What did He say?
In John 3:16, Jesus tells us that we must believe in Him in order not to perish. The
highlighted words in the three translations of John 3:16 below are the Greek word pisteuo.
Pisteuo means to have faith (in, upon, or with respect to a person or thing). Pisteuo does
not mean just to believe, but also to be persuaded of; and hence, to place confidence in, to
trust or to believe into.
(NIV 2) 16 "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.
(KJV 4) 16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that
whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
(NAS 3) 16 "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that
whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.
Putting our confidence in Jesus is required for salvation. Since this is so important, it would
be good to know what we must believe. The concept of "believing into" someone is a fairly
unusual concept in our language, lets look at John 8:24 to see what we must believe into.
(NIV 2) 24I told you that you would die in your sins; if you do not believe
that I am [the one I claim to be], you will indeed die in your sins."
(KJV 4) 24 I said therefore unto you, that ye shall die in your sins: for if ye
believe not that I am he, ye shall die in your sins.
(NAS 3) 24"Therefore I said to you that you will die in your sins; for unless
you believe that I am He, you will die in your sins."
So it is what Jesus claims about Himself that we must believe. This seems fairly obvious;
would anyone trust someone with something so important, if they could not believe that
person was who and what they claimed to be? Jesus claimed a lot about who He was. Two
passages, John 8:58 and John 10:30-33, are illustrative of what Jesus claimed concerning
John 10:30-33 (NIV 2)
30 I and the Father are one."
31 Again the Jews picked up stones to stone him, 32 but Jesus said to
them, "I have shown you many great miracles from the Father. For which
of these do you stone me?"
33 "We are not stoning you for any of these," replied the Jews, "but
for blasphemy, because you, a mere man, claim to be God."
To prevent misunderstandings, God allowed us commentary from the onlookers.
They knew what Jesus was saying and took it as Blasphemy since He claimed to
John 8:58 (IL5)
58"I tell you the truth," Jesus answered, "before Abraham was born, I
Am!" 59At this, they picked up stones to
stone him, but Jesus hid himself, slipping away from the temple
When Jesus said, "Before Abraham was born , I AM". He claimed the same name
by which God had identified Himself to Moses:
Exodus 3:14 (NIV 2)
14 God said to Moses, "I am who I am. This is what you are to say
to the Israelites: 'I AM has sent me to you.' "
The Jews that had heard what Jesus said were not confused about what He had
claimed, they knew what He meant and were ready to kill Him for it.
There are many more places in the Gospels where Jesus claims that He is God, but
one mentions us specifically, so I want to finish with it:
John 20:24-29 (KJV 4)
24But Thomas, one of the twelve, called Didymus, was not with them
when Jesus came.
25The other disciples therefore said unto him, We have seen the LORD.
But he said unto them, Except I shall see in his hands the print of the
nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and thrust my hand
into his side, I will not believe.
26And after eight days again his disciples were within, and Thomas with
them: then came Jesus, the doors being
shut, and stood in the midst, and said, Peace be unto you.
27Then saith He to Thomas, Reach hither thy finger, and behold my
hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it
into my side: and be not faithless, but believing.
28And Thomas answered and said unto him, My LORD and my God.
29Jesus saith unto him, Thomas, because thou hast seen me, thou hast
believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have
To summarize, We must put our confidence in what Jesus claims, for He
is the only one that can save us, And His claim is this: "I AM!"
†. Words shown in [brackets], or Italicized are so noted to indicate that the word enclosed
does not occur explicitly in the Greek text. One way that Greek differs from English is in the
compound meaning of some words. A word that is not explicitly in the text may have a very
valid place in the translation, as implied by the Greek meaning of that word.
1 The New Strong's Expanded Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible, Red-Letter edition
With contributions by John R. Kohlenberger. Nashville: Thomas Nelson 2001
2 The Quest Study Bible, New International Version Grand Rapids Michigan: Zondervan
3 New American Standard Bible, Text Edition Anaheim California: Foundation Publications
4 KJV Gift & Award Bible, Revised. Grand Rapids Michigan: Zondervan Corp. 2002
5 The Interlinear Bible. 2nd ed. Jay P Green Sr. 1986