If a person becomes a Christian and later in life switches to another religion, such as Mormonism, do they “lose” their salvation? Are they no longer able to go to heaven?
A person usually switches his or her religion when he/she believes it was not the correct one. So I am assuming the individual switched because of believing Christianity was wrong. Mormonism, Islam, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Buddhism, and other religions are not Christian. They believe in a different god. Mormons believe that Jesus was once a man who became a god, and they believe we can become a god too! The Jehovah’s Witnesses believe that Jesus was an angel and only 144,000 people will be saved. Islam teaches that Jesus was merely a prophet; and the list goes on. They believe in different gods, have different explanations for our sin problem, teach different types of salvation, and suggest different ways to be rescued for our problems.
What is Common?
The Bible says that Jesus is the only way to be saved.
And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men, by which we must be saved. (NASB) Acts 4:12
Some today would say that is a narrow view. So would most of the other religions. Christianity is unique. It does not teach that man becomes one with God, or becomes God, or can never know God. Christianity does not teach that man must perform good works in order to obtain salvation. In fact, Christianity is unique when it says that a man can do nothing to obtain salvation.
Times of Ignorance
Christianity was referred to as “The Way” (Acts 24:22). Paul, the apostle, makes a startling statement to some men in Athens when he tells them they do not know the true God. Here are his words . . .
Therefore having overlooked the times of ignorance, God is now declaring to men that all everywhere should repent, because He has fixed a day in which He will judge the world in righteousness through a Man whom He has appointed, having furnished proof to all men by raising Him from the dead. (NASB) Acts 17:30-31
The other religions do not lead to heaven. Jesus Christ is the only one who returned to life! He was beaten, cut with a sword, tortured, embalmed and then returned to life. That is unique. No other religious leader has done that. Paul told them they had missed the real God.
Jesus is the only way! He is the only way to life with God. So if someone rejects Jesus for something he believes is true, how can he expect to go to heaven? He has rejected “The Way.” He has rejected the only One Who can save him! God worked out a way for us to have our sins forgiven – Jesus’ death and return to life. He does not ask us to do any good deeds to gain His favor. In fact, He tells us that we cannot gain His favor. He only asks us to trust in Jesus to forgive our sins. If we reject this offer, why should we think we could still go to heaven?
He who believes in the Son has eternal life; but he who does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him. (NASB) John 3:36