Unless you have lived in a cave or otherwise have no access to any type of media, you are aware of Brit Hume’s comments to Tiger Woods that he ought to turn to Christianity since it offers the the forgiveness and redemption he needs for his transgressions.  Naturally, the comment sparked a firestorm, particularly from non-Christians who deemed the comment offensive to other religions and came across as arrogant, superior and narrow minded.  As a follower of Christ, the backlash should not surprise me, although I was reluctant to write this for that reason.

However, the more I think about what Hume stated, the more I objectively have to avow his statement concerning what Christianity offers.  I am not taking a position on the appropriateness of the comment on secular television, although I do applaud his courage.  But the fact is that there are unique claims to Christianity that no other belief system offers and to state those claims is simply demonstrating truth in advertising.  It is not superior, just factual.

The fact of Christianity is that God the Son, who always existed as God, became human but was fully God and fully man.  He came specifically to make reparations through death by taking upon himself the guilt and condemnation that is imposed upon each individual.  His resurrection seals that transaction and provides eternal life for those who would place their faith in what he has done.   His payment for sin relieves the believer of their requirement to be judged before God for it.  It is a free gift, offered to those who would accept it.   It’s not something we work for, our attain to higher levels or empty ourselves to get.  That is the claim of Christianity with features that are unique to it.  So to say, there is something that is not offered in another belief system is truthful.  What other belief system offers forgiveness of sin based on God himself coming down from heaven to take the payment upon himself so that the one who believes will be absolved of the guilt, without any work on their part?  There isn’t.

We do this all the time with consumer products.  We would not hesitate to advertise a unique deal.  It would be like Consumer A saying they know of a market where you can get product X for $10 and Consumer B indicating that the same product can be purchased for $5.  But if Consumer C says, they know of a place that is giving the product away and all one has to do is got there to get it.  Would not the Consumer C offer something, the others don’t?  That is truth in advertising.  Now Consumers A and B may not believe Consumer C, but that does not diminish the fact that Consumer C claims to offer something the others don’t.

So were Hume’s comments denigrating to Buddhism?  Or was he simply just stating the factual and unique claim of Christianity?  Moreover, perhaps it should give the believers in Christ incentive to readily and willingly advertise Christianity’s unique claim.

C Michael Patton
C Michael Patton

C. Michael Patton is the primary contributor to the Parchment and Pen/Credo Blog. He has been in ministry for nearly twenty years as a pastor, author, speaker, and blogger. Find him on Patreon Th.M. Dallas Theological Seminary (2001), president of Credo House Ministries and Credo Courses, author of Now that I'm a Christian (Crossway, 2014) Increase My Faith (Credo House, 2011), and The Theology Program (Reclaiming the Mind Ministries, 2001-2006), host of Theology Unplugged, and primary blogger here at Parchment and Pen. But, most importantly, husband to a beautiful wife and father to four awesome children. Michael is available for speaking engagements. Join his Patreon and support his ministry

    14 replies to "Truth in Advertising: A Case for Christianity’s Unique Claim"

    • Del

      I didn’t see the interview, Lisa, but I would assume the fuss isn’t over Christianity’s uniqueness. It may be because the free eternal life deal is available only directly from the manufacturer (can’t be purchased through non-christian stores), for a limited time only, and only to those who get to hear about the deal.

    • Justin

      It’s important to remember Del, that it isn’t available in christian stores either. As you said, available only from the manufacturer. And no one is going to miss out on the deal because they didn’t hear about it. God is a just god and when the world is made new, no one will get something they don’t deserve or fail to get something they do.

    • postroad

      But remember that the sacrifice of Christ is a one time deal for sins under the old covenant.

      Leviticus 16:34
      “This is to be a lasting ordinance for you: Atonement is to be made once a year for all the sins of the Israelites.” And it was done, as the LORD commanded Moses.

      Romans 6:9-11 For we know that since Christ was raised from the dead, he cannot die again; death no longer has mastery over him. 10The death he died, he died to sin once for all; but the life he lives, he lives to God.

      11In the same way, count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus.

      Hebrews 9:25-27 25Nor did he enter heaven to offer himself again and again, the way the high priest enters the Most Holy Place every year with blood that is not his own. 26Then Christ would have had to suffer many times since the creation of the world. But now he has appeared once for all at the end of the ages to do away with sin by the sacrifice of himself. 27Just as man is destined to die once, and after that to face judgment,

      14because by one sacrifice he has made perfect forever those who are being made holy.

      15The Holy Spirit also testifies to us about this. First he says:
      16″This is the covenant I will make with them
      after that time, says the Lord.
      I will put my laws in their hearts,
      and I will write them on their minds.”[b] 17Then he adds:
      “Their sins and lawless acts
      I will remember no more.”[c] 18And where these have been forgiven, there is no longer any sacrifice for sin. 19Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus, 20by a new and living way opened for us through the curtain, that is, his body, 21and since we have a great priest over the house of God, 22let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water. 23Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. 24And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. 25Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.

      26If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, 27but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God. 28Anyone who rejected the law of Moses died without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. 29How much more severely do you think a man deserves to be punished who has trampled the Son of God under foot, who has treated as an unholy thing the blood of the covenant that sanctified him, and who has insulted the Spirit of grace?

    • Ed Kratz


      Aside from the fact that I don’t agree with this statement here, “But remember that the sacrifice of Christ is a one time deal for sins under the old covenant.” since that passage in Hebrews is talking about the new covenant, what does that or the cut and pasted passages have to do with the post?

    • postroad

      Simple. Christ died once and for all for all sins before one accepts Christ as your Savior.

      After that the believer testifies that they are no longer members of the old covenant but rather members of the new.

      Paul is pointing to the text of Jerimiah in his letter and stating that the people under the new do not have a sacrifice for sin left because God himself will transform them into perfect obediance.

      No sacrifice for sin is neccesary because no sin will be comitted by authentic new covenant believers.

      Comitting a sin is an admission to the world that Christs gift was counterfiet.

      This act is the unpardonable sin of blasphemy of the Holy Spirit spoken of by Jesus

    • Ed Kratz

      Post, actually the believer was never apart of the old covenant – that was for Israel.

      That said, none of what you have written, which is confusing, has anything to do with the point of the post. The point is when we make claims that Christianity offers something that no other belief system does, it is not taking an arrogant position but a factual one because of Christianity’s unique claims.

    • postroad

      Lisa Paul says that only Christ represented Israel.

      Galatians 3:15-17
      15Brothers, let me take an example from everyday life. Just as no one can set aside or add to a human covenant that has been duly established, so it is in this case. 16The promises were spoken to Abraham and to his seed. The Scripture does not say “and to seeds,” meaning many people, but “and to your seed,” meaning one person, who is Christ. 17What I mean is this: The law, introduced 430 years later, does not set aside the covenant previously established by God and thus do away with the promise.

      I am an Agnostic so I can just asume that Paul was deluded.

      But it is in the Bible.

      Just as they were deluded in thinking that they could be saved by the Law, So to where they deluded in believing they had special status on acount of Their forefathers.

      Although Paul does contradict himself on every last thing he writes, in other letters.

      So their is hope yet.

    • Ed Kratz

      Post, I am confused by what you’re writing or what you are trying to get at. I also think you are not seeing this passage in context of God’s progressive revelation in Scripture. But again, it has nothing to do with what I’ve written. Please keep comments on topic.

    • postroad

      How more progressive can it be.

      Israel is the seed of Abraham.

      Israel is the seed of Abraham but only through Isaac.

      Israel is the seed of Isaac but only through Jacob.

      Israel is the seed of Jacob but only through Christ.

      Israel is Christians clothed in the body of Christ.

      Perfectly on topic with OP.

    • postroad

      Could I add that the Jews had every reason to believe that they as a nation where God’s firstborn son.

      But acording to Paul they misunderstood.

      Exodus 4:21-22
      21 The LORD said to Moses, “When you return to Egypt, see that you perform before Pharaoh all the wonders I have given you the power to do. But I will harden his heart so that he will not let the people go. 22 Then say to Pharaoh, ‘This is what the LORD says: Israel is my firstborn son,

    • Rick

      Good post.

      Some of the pushback comes because of something you pointed out, “It is not superior, just factual.” But that is not what people look for. They are looking for diversity, tolerance, and acceptance above all else. Those are the ultimate goals.

      Likewise, you mentioned advertising. People are so skeptical of advertising claims, that when someone (like Hume) makes such a statement, it rings of more false/hyped advertising.

      However, when God Himself comes in human form to conquer death, restore lives, and establish His Kingdom, and asks us to join Him in relationship and mission, it is unique indeed.

    • Gary Simmons

      Great, great post!

    • sjcalhoun

      The responses I’ve heard to Hume’s comment didn’t relate to the content of Christianity at all but to the evidence in the life of self-proclaimed believers. Perhaps Mark Sanford, John Ensign or Ted Haggard could mentor Tiger in fidelity and chastity.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.