Recently I enjoyed an extended conversation with a group of students in Chicago. They voiced many questions and objections regarding Christianity.
One international student I’ll call Ben said, “I’m against the idea that you have to have the right religious beliefs in order to be accepted by God. I don’t see how this is fair, since people all over the world have different beliefs as a result of their culture and religion and family.”
What I said in return. (Disclaimer: I don’t have expertise on all the questions. But I do have experience with most. So I pass on to you at least one way to answer this particular question.)
I replied to Ben that from a Christian perspective his intuition is good. Mere mental assent to “correct religious belief” won’t save you. Christianity is about a relationship with God through Jesus Christ. But right belief is still important. True Christian faith involves both heart and head.
Ben wasn’t done. He zeroed in on the random nature of Christian belief. There are thousands of different belief systems out there, he said. What are the chances of landing on the right one? Who’s to say? And if God requires that you get lucky and choose the right beliefs, what does that say about God? Not a fair deal, says Ben. Not fair at all.
Next post: What I said in reply to this second objection from Ben.