Why do Christians feel the need to convert people?

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Re: Why do Christians feel the need to convert people?

Postby savvybusinessman » Jul 2nd, 2018, 7:37 pm

Merry wrote:If atheists are so convinced that Christians are all "nutters" why do they waste so much time trying to discredit them?


Because it's funny seeing someone flail around without any kind of logical argument. Plus, from what I've seen, the religious person will say something upsetting and extremely bigoted like, "gay people are abominations" which then sparks an argument.
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Re: Why do Christians feel the need to convert people?

Postby Merry » Jul 2nd, 2018, 7:51 pm

savvybusinessman wrote:Because it's funny seeing someone flail around without any kind of logical argument.

Why does it bother you so much that somebody believes something that you don't? If their belief gives them purpose in life and makes them happy, what's the problem? How does their faith affect you? The answer is that it doesn't, so best to learn to "live and let live" and get on with your life, and stop telling others how to live theirs.

savvybusinessman wrote: Plus, from what I've seen, the religious person will say something upsetting and extremely bigoted like, "gay people are abominations" which then sparks an argument.

Not all religious people are homophobes, or bigots, or whatever other derogatory adjective you can come up with. The same applies to non religious people. Although I'm sure there are quite a few non religious people who do fall into some of those categories, I'm equally sure there are many who don't. It's silly to try to credit large groups of people with the same personality traits, because it's simply not true. All people are individuals, who may share some views while simultaneously differing on others.
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Re: Why do Christians feel the need to convert people?

Postby savvybusinessman » Jul 2nd, 2018, 7:58 pm

^Please read what I typed. Nowhere did I say ALL religious people are bigots. I said "from what I've seen" the religious person will say something upsetting and hide behind their religion to justify it which then sparks an argument.

Please see what happened with that Christian lady a few years ago who made several horrible remarks about the LGBTQ community and tried to hide behind a religion shield to act like she wasn't saying anything upsetting.

If a religious person wants to just go about his or her business and not be a prick then that's fine with me. The second they make derogatory remarks about minorities and hide behind the bible, it's on.
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Re: Why do Christians feel the need to convert people?

Postby Merry » Jul 2nd, 2018, 8:32 pm

savvybusinessman wrote:^Please read what I typed. Nowhere did I say ALL religious people are bigots. I said "from what I've seen" the religious person will say something upsetting and hide behind their religion to justify it which then sparks an argument.

Please see what happened with that Christian lady a few years ago who made several horrible remarks about the LGBTQ community and tried to hide behind a religion shield to act like she wasn't saying anything upsetting.

If a religious person wants to just go about his or her business and not be a prick then that's fine with me. The second they make derogatory remarks about minorities and hide behind the bible, it's on.

Anyone who makes derogatory remarks about other people deserves to be taken to task. But implying that it is only religious people who are guilty of making such remarks is foolish, because the world is full of unpleasant people, some of whom are religious and some who are not.

I don't know which particular incident you are referring to regarding the lady who made horrible remarks about the LGBTQ community, but using one incident that happened several years ago to categorize a whole group of people doesn't make any sense. Religious people number in the tens of millions, all of whom are individuals who despite sharing a particular world view still have their own individual character traits and personalities. Ditto for non-religious people.

The world houses many unpleasant individuals, but those individuals do not necessarily all share the same world view. Religion and atheism are different world views, but neither has the monopoly on bigotry and hatred. Those particular character traits can be found in members of both groups.

When an atheist acts badly do you blame that person's bad behaviour on the fact they are an atheist? Or do you simply lay the blame where it ought to be laid, which is on the individual themself? My point is that individuals, regardless of their particular world view, are still responsible for their own behaviour and ought to be considered as such.
"In a world swathed in political correctness, the voting booth remains the final sanctuary where the people are free to speak" - Clifford Orwin

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Re: Why do Christians feel the need to convert people?

Postby Glacier » Jul 3rd, 2018, 12:04 am

I agree with pretty much everything you've been saving, Merry. My only difference, I suppose, is that I think atheists try to convince religious people is that they believe religion is the opiate of the masses, so if you can convince someone who believes X (which you deem as dangerous, violent, etc.), you have made the world a better place. It's pretty much the same reason religious people try to convince other religious people and non-religious people. Actually, I would argue that it's the same reason you posted in this thread -- when someone believes something that's wrong, they would be better off not believing that thing that's wrong.
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Re: Why do Christians feel the need to convert people?

Postby Jflem1983 » Jul 3rd, 2018, 6:53 am

I have always viewed religion as a crutch. However im getting old. 34. Starting to see the world different . Ill be an old washed up waste in a few short years. Nothing good happens after 35.
So i am trying to embrace religion. The hardest part is picking one. There are so many. Each one swears it is the truth . Oh jeez this is gonna be tuff
Now they want to take our guns away . That would be just fine. Take em away from the criminals first . Ill gladly give u mine. "Charlie Daniels"

You have got to stand for something . Or you will fall for anything "Aaron Tippin"
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Re: Why do Christians feel the need to convert people?

Postby youjustcomplain » Jul 3rd, 2018, 8:53 am

Merry wrote:When an atheist acts badly do you blame that person's bad behaviour on the fact they are an atheist? Or do you simply lay the blame where it ought to be laid, which is on the individual themself? My point is that individuals, regardless of their particular world view, are still responsible for their own behaviour and ought to be considered as such.


The problem with that though is the difference between an Atheist and a Christian (or any other faith group). Really, by definition, a Atheist doesn't belong to a faith group. They don't have a holy book where they can refer to and cite as their source for their comments.

When an Atheist makes a really stupid, ignorant, intolerant, etc... type of comment, you hold them to task. Totally true ! Hang them on their words! They aren't speaking for Atheists, they're not referring to a holy book. But when a Christian states something awful and then backs up their comment with a bible passage, you must hold both the Christian who made the comment, and the bible responsible. The Christian makes the claim then hides behind their faith. Using their faith, religion, and holy book as a shield is an act of cowardice.
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Re: Why do Christians feel the need to convert people?

Postby my5cents » Jul 3rd, 2018, 9:17 am

If someone announces that something that is legal and by majority, socially acceptable in our society is wrong, it depends on what they say, if that comment is attached to a religion.

If someone verbally or I guess physically attacks, for example a gay couple, or refuses to provide a service to them, such as serving them in a restaurant by saying "I'm a Christian and it is against my religion....." then that statement and act is held as negative by many against Christians, even though many Christians don't hold those views.

If someone does the same without any comment on religion they personally are likely labeled a homophobe, with no negative link to a religion.

As for atheists, I sure there are lots of homophobic atheists but generally you don't hear someone justifying their dislike for gays by saying "I'm an atheists and ……"

What I do find annoying are people who, when you meet them for the first time, within seconds they work into the conversation that they are Christians and they this or they that....
"The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who haven't got it"

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Re: Why do Christians feel the need to convert people?

Postby Glacier » Jul 3rd, 2018, 9:35 am

youjustcomplain wrote:
When an Atheist makes a really stupid, ignorant, intolerant, etc... type of comment, you hold them to task. Totally true ! Hang them on their words! They aren't speaking for Atheists, they're not referring to a holy book. But when a Christian states something awful and then backs up their comment with a bible passage, you must hold both the Christian who made the comment, and the bible responsible. The Christian makes the claim then hides behind their faith. Using their faith, religion, and holy book as a shield is an act of cowardice.

I get what you're saying, but wanting to convince people or convert people to your way of thinking is a human universal, and isn't really a bad thing. Freedom of speech leads to the proselytizing of all the various viewpoints. The alternative is to persecute everyone who doesn't adhere to that state religion. Having the JWs showing up at your door is the price of freedom. When you think of it that way, you get less annoyed over people exercising their freedoms.
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Re: Why do Christians feel the need to convert people?

Postby my5cents » Jul 3rd, 2018, 9:57 am

youjustcomplain wrote:When an Atheist makes a really stupid, ignorant, intolerant, etc... type of comment, you hold them to task. Totally true ! Hang them on their words! They aren't speaking for Atheists, they're not referring to a holy book. But when a Christian states something awful and then backs up their comment with a bible passage, you must hold both the Christian who made the comment, and the bible responsible. The Christian makes the claim then hides behind their faith. Using their faith, religion, and holy book as a shield is an act of cowardice.


I agree with your comment that some Christians hide behind the shield of their religion. You can't blame them, if I was intent on training someone to believe something I would start training them at a very young age and flood them with the information year in, year out.

The basis of my comment was that atheists don't announce that they are so, when making a criticism or judgement.

People who a member of a faith, justify there opposition to social issues by stating they are a member of that faith or even quoting scripture.

Unless an atheists is speaking negatively about a religion the don't announce "I'm an atheist and we don't believe in same sex marriage (for example)".
"The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who haven't got it"
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Re: Why do Christians feel the need to convert people?

Postby my5cents » Jul 3rd, 2018, 10:17 am

Glacier wrote:I get what you're saying, but wanting to convince people or convert people to your way of thinking is a human universal, and isn't really a bad thing. Freedom of speech leads to the proselytizing of all the various viewpoints. The alternative is to persecute everyone who doesn't adhere to that state religion. Having the JWs showing up at your door is the price of freedom. When you think of it that way, you get less annoyed over people exercising their freedoms.


Actually you can ask that the JW's place you on a list and they won't come to your door.

We've come a long way in Canada. I recall as a young fellow, the "Lords Day Act", where businesses couldn't open on Sundays, sporting events couldn't be held (later sports played by teams professionally could). It wasn't declared unconstitutional until 1985, and then was appealed to the Supreme Court of Canada where it was declared once and for all unconstitutional.

Slightly off topic.... The situation in the US is disturbing where strides a made in constitutional rights, only to be rolled back and the expectation of more things rolled back, by a new mix in the Supreme Court.

IMO in a perfect world, religion and related science would be fully taught in school in an unbiased format with all information presented and then each student would be able to decide once they have all the facts. I would expect such students would have to have achieved a minimum age of at least 16 years of age before making a decision.

This of course, would never fly.
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Re: Why do Christians feel the need to convert people?

Postby youjustcomplain » Jul 3rd, 2018, 11:59 am

my5cents wrote:If someone verbally or I guess physically attacks, for example a gay couple, or refuses to provide a service to them, such as serving them in a restaurant by saying "I'm a Christian and it is against my religion....." then that statement and act is held as negative by many against Christians, even though many Christians don't hold those views.

Right. Even though it's not universal that Christians show content for gays, it's true that some do, and they have based their opinion on homosexuality, in general, either from the bible, their church, or their personal feelings on the subject. When they are awful towards gay people and they say it's because they're Christian, that's where I find myself at odds with the person and their faith. I do recognize that it's not all Christians who feel that way, and that most Christians actually don't feel that way. However, they're holy book is written such that it can be manipulated for hate. We've all heard people do awful things and say it's because of their religion/faith.


my5cents wrote:If someone does the same without any comment on religion they personally are likely labeled a homophobe, with no negative link to a religion.

True ! Most people of faith are proud of their faith and if they have an opinion that is out of line with society, they make their reasons known. I'm an atheist and if I spoke against homosexuality, I would have to explain why I was against it. I have no holy book or faith system that I can manipulate for my reasons for my awfulness. People of faith do and they're attempt to explain why they are against homosexuality, or gay marriage, or whatever the issue would be, always seems to come back to their faith. If they said their reason was that they just thought it was gross, or something opinion based, I think everyone would just decide they're a bigot and move on.

my5cents wrote:As for atheists, I sure there are lots of homophobic atheists but generally you don't hear someone justifying their dislike for gays by saying "I'm an atheists and ……"

This one makes me wonder... On what basis would an atheist be homophobic? I'm certainly not doubting that some are, only what their reasons for it would be. But one thing is for sure, no atheist could honestly say that they are homophobic because of their atheism if you define atheism like I do; a lack of belief in a god/gods.

my5cents wrote:What I do find annoying are people who, when you meet them for the first time, within seconds they work into the conversation that they are Christians and they this or they that....

Agreed !! Other than on these forums, my atheism is mine alone. My wife knows and nobody else. Not because I feel it's something to be ashamed or proud of. It's just part of me and I keep much of me to myself. :)
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Re: Why do Christians feel the need to convert people?

Postby youjustcomplain » Jul 3rd, 2018, 12:03 pm

Glacier wrote:I get what you're saying, but wanting to convince people or convert people to your way of thinking is a human universal, and isn't really a bad thing.

No argument from me. Though I will say that I've never attempted to convert anyone to my lack of belief. Futile really. I'm sure I'm not the only one.

Glacier wrote:Freedom of speech leads to the proselytizing of all the various viewpoints. The alternative is to persecute everyone who doesn't adhere to that state religion. Having the JWs showing up at your door is the price of freedom. When you think of it that way, you get less annoyed over people exercising their freedoms.

I happy take all forms of Freedom of speech. I don't like it when JW's show up at my door, but short of accepting their brochure and tossing it in the garbage, I'm somewhat polite to them. I suspect I'm a breath of fresh air compared to some of the *bleep* they run in to.
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Re: Why do Christians feel the need to convert people?

Postby youjustcomplain » Jul 3rd, 2018, 12:06 pm

my5cents wrote:IMO in a perfect world, religion and related science would be fully taught in school in an unbiased format with all information presented and then each student would be able to decide once they have all the facts. I would expect such students would have to have achieved a minimum age of at least 16 years of age before making a decision.


My sentiments exactly. Don't teach nothing about religion in schools, and don't teach about one. Teach about all of the major religions and teach that they require faith. I would love to see an educational system that actually teaches objective learning and assists children as they grow up to make decisions for themselves. As they grow older, they should be able to pick the faith system that best aligns with them.

I'd bet if kids couldn't make that decision until 16, we'd have a lot more atheists. Just my opinion though. :)

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Re: Why do Christians feel the need to convert people?

Postby my5cents » Jul 3rd, 2018, 12:34 pm

youjustcomplain wrote:Right. Even though it's not universal that Christians show content ......….

Should that be "contempt" ?

my5cents wrote:As for atheists, I sure there are lots of homophobic atheists but generally you don't hear someone justifying their dislike for gays by saying "I'm an atheists and ……"


youjustcomplain wrote:This one makes me wonder... On what basis would an atheist be homophobic? ……..


I don't think that all anti gay sentiment comes from religion. In fact I'd bet a fair amount doesn't. Being different for some is enough to bring on discrimination.

One interesting/ironic point,, ask anyone versed in suspect interviewing and interrogation, a suspect who says words to the effect "I'm a Christian [or any religion] I'm telling the truth/I would never steal", is lying their head off.

Yes, I'm tempted when someone injects in a conversation in the first few seconds that they are Christians, is to inform them that I'm an atheist, just to see how they react.

But, just like if I was a Christian, or a follower of any religion I don't think such a discussion needs to take place, ie two wrongs don't make a right.
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