In recent months and may be years the controversy on conversion is raging like firestorm across the social media, although I am not sure if this is really a firestorm only in the digital world or also in the more real India. Today as a result everything is being looked through this prism and has made people nervous to the extent that one feels and openly confesses “I am a stranger in my own country”. This was indeed shocking to me, not because someone said that, but because more and more people have joined this group. As the cliché goes “do not judge a book by its cover”, it is easy to get into an argument and abuse each other, but to understand this better we need to dig a bit more under the cover. And if you want to understand more read through this or as the stats show 60% don’t read the complete article, but they have the most opinions and tend to share theirs quickly.
I don’t know of any conspiracy, but I can see only a theological point of view which is completely ignored or lack of insight into this side. Does Bible advocate conversion of the heart or not? Jesus’s last words were “Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” So the fundamental duty of every follower of Christ is to share the good news of Jesus birth, His forgiveness of all sins through the death on Cross and His resurrection from death. This good news is referred in the Christian circles as the Great Commission, that is meant not just for the first followers of Christ, but since then to everyone who follows Christ. Some follow this directly, some provide direct/indirect support to those who do and as always there will be many who never followed these last words. This is fundamental teaching of Christianity and this is the reason many missionaries have traveled to unreachable places like the once dark continent, middle east and Asia and this continues to happen. People have lost lives or had been imprisoned doing this, the most recent and famous ones being Pastor Saeed imprisoned in Iran, Mr. Kenneth Bae in North Korea and many others who we may never know. I do not discount any conspiracy but there are less chances as this is stated more plainly.
Some more questions answered in this page – http://www.gotquestions.org/Christian-missionary.html
Marketing the TRUTH
Today the home minister has asked why can’t everyone get along without doing any conversions and to me this is like saying lets not market cars or bikes. If all cars and bikes are same then why do we market them? I know this analogy is not perfect, but conveys the message if you think about this yourself a little more. Consumers in the process takes a test drive, scrutinize the claims, request feedback from their friends/experts and this way the consumer can choose what is perfect for them. If this is what is done for a vehicle that you use and throw, how much more should you be for your soul that is going to spend eternity. Think about that! So yes, TRUTH has to be marketed and Freedom of Choice is important to let the individual person be responsible for the actions. You cannot say you have freedom to choose your school, college course, your job, your spouse, your child, but not be allowed to choose your eternity.
Top 20 countries where Christianity is growing fast
|Rank||Country||Continent||Christian AAGR||Years to double||Majority Religion||Percent Christian 1970||Percent Christian 2020|
|1||Nepal||Asia, South Central||10.93%||6.6||Hindu||0.1%||3.8%|
|3||United Arab Emirates||Arabian Peninsula||9.34%||7.7||Muslim||5.9%||12.9%|
|4||Saudi Arabia||Arabian Peninsula||9.27%||7.8||Muslim||0.3%||4.6%|
|12||Burkina Faso||Africa, Western||4.81%||15.0||Muslim||9.0%||24.8%|
|13||South Sudan||Africa, Eastern||4.67%||15.4||Christian||22.7%||63.8%|
|14||Bhutan||Asia, South Central||4.60%||15.7||Buddhist||0.3%||1.1%|
|20||Turks and Caicos Islands||Caribbean||3.97%||18.1||Christian||99.5%||91.6%|
One of the ideas being considered is to either ban conversion completely or introduce some form of law [like Sharia] which will make it difficult and dangerous to express and choose religion. This is being pictured as a way to save the gullible, poor people who otherwise cannot protect their faith, really? Just because they are poor or illiterate or downtrodden doesn’t mean that God forgot to install a brain and a heart. God is not good of the wise, rich and the intellectual. God, if is God would be someone who can connect with everyone directly because God is the creator of everyone irrespective of your physical, social or economic situation. God does not need zombies, but rather people who understand and choose to follow. God would never ban conversion. Banning freedom to profess or choose one’s personal spirituality is only counter productive. Making it more difficult, I believe would not stop people from choosing other religions but would only make it grow as it does right now [if not faster], the activities will become more underground and thus making it difficult to find out the real numbers. China is a classic example where state restrictions don’t work. Based on lot of statistics from reliable sources China an officially atheist country is expected to become the largest Christian country in the world by 2030. China which is able to grow tremendously economically, militarily and restrict their population growth so effectively through their ruthless policy yet could not stop growth of spirituality!
I believe state and religion should never mix, if it does it would be making the same mistake that Christendom did in the middle centuries, Islam is doing right now in middle east/Africa/East Asia and Communists are doing in China. Let us learn our lessons that not all religions are the same and not all roads will lead to Rome. It is the society’s responsibility to guide and it is the individual’s responsibility to choose. If we have not learnt our lessons from history or current events and if we still continue to walk down this path like blind people as the saying goes “if the blind lead the blind both will fall into the pit“.