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Pastors state that one must believe in Jesus in order to go to heaven. What does "believe in Jesus" mean and how do you support your answer? I've asked Christians, but they most often respond that it simply means believing events occurred (God sent Jesus; Jesus died for our sins) or information such as being the son of God. Belief in events or information doesn't make much sense to me.

People often quote John 3:16, but I've read that and I found they always cut it short. They leave out the key points at the end about loving the light and hating the dark. When Jesus is asked what it takes to get into heaven after telling the story of the Good Samaritan, he gives a very clear and concise answer about it being all about loving everything that's outside of your self (your neighbors and God). So does believing in Jesus simply mean loving everything that's outside yourself? Does this imply that non-Christians may be just as likely to go to heaven as Christians based on their ability to love?

Luke 10: 25 And behold, a certain lawyer stood up and tested Him, saying, “Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” 26 He said to him, “What is written in the law? What is your reading of it?” 27 So he answered and said, “ ‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind,’[h] and ‘your neighbor as yourself.’”[i] 28 And He said to him, “You have answered rightly; do this and you will live.”

If "belief in Jesus" is what it takes to go to heaven. And if Jesus says what it takes to go to heaven is loving everything outside yourself. Then it follows that belief in Jesus equates to loving everything outside yourself. Therefore non-Christians can go to heaven without even knowing who Jesus is.

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closed as too broad by Caleb Apr 19 at 10:51

There are either too many possible answers, or good answers would be too long for this format. Please add details to narrow the answer set or to isolate an issue that can be answered in a few paragraphs.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

For the purposes of this site, "Christianity" as a whole is too broad a scope. Since this is a public space with no doctrinal oversight, groups that use the label Christian but have different definitions for what that means are all on topic. Yet Protestants, Mormons, Catholics, Seventh Day Adventists, etc. will all have very different answers to questions like this one. Sorting out which is ultimately correct is beyond the scope of questions here. Would you perhaps like to edit to focus your question on the beliefs of a specific group that might be answerable in this context? –  Caleb Apr 19 at 11:22

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