There is a popular analogy used to show that all religions are valid ways to describe God. Religion professors especially love this analogy, because it equalizes all religions, making all religions equally “true” in their description of God.
The analogy is this: there are four blind men who discover an elephant. Since the men have never encountered an elephant, they grope about, seeking to understand and describe this new phenomenon.
One grasps the trunk and concludes it is a snake. Another explores one of the elephant’s legs and describes it as a tree. A third finds the elephant’s tail and announces that it is a rope. And the fourth blind man, after discovering the elephant’s side, concludes that it is, after all, a wall.
Each in his blindness is describing the same thing: an elephant. Yet each describes the same thing in a radically different way.
According to many, this is analogous to the different religions of the world–they are describing the same thing in radically different ways. Thus one should conclude that no individual religion has a corner on truth, but that all should be viewed as essentially equally valid.
If God is infinite and we are finite, it is reasonable to believe that none of us can fully capture His nature.
But does this elephant analogy demonstrate the truth that all religions lead to God? To conclude that it does would ignore several points:
Jesus Christ, unique among all religious leaders of history, claimed to be such a “fifth man,” a definitive revelation of God. Many of the people who watched Jesus’ miracles and heard him speak were offended by his clear statements about his deity. “This was why [they] sought all the more to kill him, because he not only broke the sabbath but also called God his own Father, making himself equal with God.”1
Jesus however, invited us to believe in him if we want our search for God satisfied… “I am the bread of life; he who comes to me shall not hunger, and he who believes in me shall never thirst.”2
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