Why Did We Choose to be Christians?
We did not choose to be Christians. We're Christians because our parents are Christians.
On this page, a different perspective from a true Christian believer, to help you with your research on this subject.
Why do we Feel so Strongly about a Religion we Inherited? And what if we weren't Born to Christian Parents?
Let's face it, most Christians today are Christians because their parents are Christians. They did not research the subject or look at other religions, then decided to choose Christian. Obviously, it is the same with all other religions; they all follow their ancestors’ choices. Then the next question becomes, how is it that we feel so strongly about a religion we inherited? And what if we were born to non-Christian parents, what would be our position then? Very valid questions. Here's my answer:
Most Christians are actually not true Christians as I detailed in my link Are we True Christians? They're mostly there for the social aspect of it, not truly seeking God. Therefore, one answer to this question is that these people are there as in a social or political group - with an "us and them" attitude. So they'll defend their parents' choices regardless.
As for the few truly genuine Christians, the Bible says God foreknew them. Romans 8:29, For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, as in, He foresaw our hearts and our attitude towards Him before we were born. Then placed us in the right environment to nurture our tendency towards Him. This Bible verse says God first "foreknew" us before we were born, then He acted accordingly, He did not mysteriously choose us.
This does not mean all Christians are souls placed there by God. Remember, not all Christians are genuine Christian believers nor will they all go to heaven later! In fact only a small percentage of them will - See my page on The Narrow Gate. And with the same token, not all non-Christians will go to hell. God will guide those who seek Him, albeit a small number of non-Christians may. Finding Him means finding God in the Bible, not becoming a church member! There is a huge difference.
Yes I do feel blessed by God for being born to Christian parents, which gave me an early start in life on reading the Bible.
I have done a lot of studying of other religions; not all of them, but most of the major ones. And I did look at things from an unbiased view. Since it is all based on faith, I can tell you Christianity and the Bible made the most sense to me. A very consistent Bible throughout its thousands of pages that I have read many times and read it in two languages. So no problem with translations. But most importantly a clear redemption plan to reconcile us with God. Christian is the only religion with a prophet that rose from the dead, and is alive in the flesh today, the Messiah Jesus Christ. And many saw Him after He rose from the dead. But so many are skeptical. This is because humans always go for the "it's a hoax" rumor. Look for example at what happened with the Sandy Hook elementary school mass shooting massacre. A few weeks after the massacre, a guy started a rumor that it was a hoax. And people believed him!!! A massacre with many dead people with pictures and grieving school and parents. And the "hoax" message prevailed! So, "Jesus rose from the dead" is a hoax? Don't follow the herd. Do your homework before you send yourself to hell.
Not all Christians are from Christian Parents
Let’s go back in time to a period when people converted from whatever they were in, to Christianity. There were two types of conversions:
Converted to Christians By Force
Like many other religions, the Christian religion had its own shameful chapters in history, where certain people, churches, and governments hijacked the name of Christianity to accomplish their agendas. So force was used to convert people, historical examples in South America and the Crusaders. I agree it was not proper Christian behavior; nowhere in the New-Testament Bible does it mention or encourage this type of behavior. In fact, it was the exact opposite. Jesus instructed us to "love our enemies". If you're thinking, what about the Old Testament killing driven by God? I have a section on this in my Atheism link, Section 7 here: God-Driven Killings in the Old-Testament. And that was only applicable to that specific period in history; not to be carried over to after Christ.
Peaceful Conversions to Christianity
And we also had peaceful conversions of people to Christianity. One perfect example was in the days of the Apostle Paul. Paul was a Jew who became Christian shortly after the death and resurrection of Jesus. He traveled all across the Mediterranean from Israel to Rome, passing through the coastal countries along the way, example Greece, preaching the good news about Jesus. Most of these places at the time believed in a variety of gods: gods of Olympus, sun, moon, stars, statues, hand-made figurines, etc.. But after Paul explained to them the story of the invisible only true God of the universe and His son Jesus who’s sacrifice on the cross saved all who believed in Him, many converted to Christianity.
That was a very significant vote for Christianity! Who converts from the religion of their ancestors to another? And conversions in masses! Don’t take my word for it. Check public records and history books. Note that if you look at history books, you will also see violence and government-mandated Christian converting by force in those regions at that time. But careful, let's not mix things up! When Paul started his mission, and arrived on the scene in ancient Greece for example, there were only pagans who had been worshipping the twelve gods of Olympus. And had been in that pagan religion for more than 1000 years. He talked to them, and many converted. But the violence started some time later, when the conversions reached government officials. Then they started mandating Christianity by force, etc.. A similar chronology of events happened in the rest of the region, including Rome.
You may say, but I read that Paul performed miracles to them, which obviously helped in that mass conversion. Good point! Yes, he did. And he was not a magician; people would have seen through that. That leaves only one explanation. Paul proclaimed the story of Jesus and backed it up with real miracles. This had to be the only explanation of why people denounced their cherished ancestors’ religion, and followed Christianity. What other religion can do this, peacefully? It is impossible.
Paul made sure not to disrespect their common beliefs. He did not go in bashing their idol worshipping and telling them they're all going to hell. He started by talking about the “unknown god”, which was an actual one of their gods. And he asked if this "unknown god" could actually be the real invisible God, creator of heaven and earth. This was how he got their attention. And it grew from there.
This large conversion during the time of Paul was only one example of peaceful conversions. Another example was the Jewish people during Jesus time. Many of them converted, after listening to Jesus, and seeing His miracles. And also later through the teachings and miracles of His disciples. We all know it was impossible to convince a Jewish person descendant from the 12 tribes of Israel, following Moses' teachings, to believe in anything different. Jesus and His disciples were not influential speakers nor magicians! Obviously what the Jewish people saw and heard was enough to get them to believe that Jesus was indeed the promised messiah, and converted to Christians.
Don't listen to those always trying to discredit the validity of the Bible. "An antiquated book, translated many times" etc., making up false claims about the validity of its miracles. People will be people; always with some kind of an agenda. Those who want their religion to be right and all others wrong, those who believe in nothing always attacking all religions including Christianity, and those making a sensational report about the Bible for financial profits because they know this is what people want to hear. And I know you want to ask me, "what about you?" One big difference with me: I'm not bashing other religions and I'm not selling anything. I'm only pointing to the Biblical facts to help you in your search for the true God.
The usual criteria used by most other religions is, you're good when your "good deeds out-number your bad deeds". But for Christians, the only way to eternal life is through Jesus, who's sacrifice on the cross provided salvation through forgiveness of all sins no matter how many. And the Bible makes it clear that all humans on earth are invited to believe in Jesus and receive His gift of salvation.
I’ll tell you a secret from the Bible. Not all those who are labeled “Christians”, as in belonging to a social club, will get into heaven later. Only true Christian believers will, according to these Bible references:
Jesus said to the Jews: Isaiah the prophet was right when he prophesied about you, "These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me."
Jesus said “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven."
Jesus said: "Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’".
13 “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. 14 But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.
Therefore, it's not about what the various Christians of this world think of themselves. It's about what God thinks of them.
Take a look around on this website. You'll find good explanations of how God accomplishes this salvation through His grace. The God of the Bible is a loving God. He desires that all people be saved by accepting His grace through believing that Jesus is His son who died for our sins to give us a path to salvation. I agree it is embarrassing with all the Christian denominations out there having various messages, strange rules, and ways. But I urge you to look at the links here on the Home page of this website. This website shows a different perspective; it shows the true description of the Christian Bible, uninfluenced by any church-denominations. It could transform your life. God would pour out His blessings on you, here on earth, and give you eternal life.