Forced Conversion, Part Deux

Continued from previous post…

The reason I bring this up is, what if I was in Centanni’s shoes? I am a Christian [follower of Christ], that is a born again child of God who believes that Jesus of Nazareth bodily rose from the dead [this is what being a Christian is, cultural conventions aside].

If forced to “convert” to Islam I wouldn’t do it. Threat of death or not. It’s harder for me to say that now since I am a father of a precious 7 month old child.

I wouldn’t do it because my allegiance, above everyone else, is to Jesus Christ. One can’t claim to be His follower (lit. a Christian) if one does not put Him above everyone else (spouse, children, family, friends). The following is as difficult a text as can be but it’s the Lord’s own words:

“If anyone comes to Me, and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be My disciple.” –Luke 14:26


He also says,

“But whoever denies Me before men, I will also deny him before My Father who is in heaven.” — Matthew 10:33


So if I were put in Centanni’s place, I would have no choice but to declare, Jesus is the Way the Truth and the Life, no one comes to the Father but through Him, shortly before taking the bullet or the sword. I welcome/accept any criticism or outrage over this post.



7 Responses to Forced Conversion, Part Deux

  1. Anna says:

    You have the moral courage of your convictions. I have a feeling that neither Centanni nor Wiig had such conviction or they would have resisted. Now the question for them is, did they save their lives only to lose their souls?

  2. jamesmnw says:

    I would not have the strength of faith to die for my god. I do not believe that any religion or god transcends the gift of life. I do not understand how your reading of the bible could leave you with “no choice but to declare” your faith and to die for it. Centanni chose life over a god and I think I would do the same.

  3. Lazaro says:

    James, thank you for your comment… You mention the ‘gift of life’, a gift has a giver does it not? I believe that God is that giver so if that is the case then how does He not transcend His own gift?

    My reading of the bible? I quoted the Bible directly, is there another way to intepret the verses above, please feel free to share.

  4. jamesmnw says:

    I call life a gift because of its mystery. I believe that life was generated from random movements of chemicals and that natural selection leads to increasingly more complex assortments of those chemicals. Truthfully, I can not decide whether there is a god involved in that or not.

    I have been both religious and an atheist in my life… at the moment I just can not say for sure either way. And while I am not sure, I cannot die for god.

    As for your bible quotations… I don’t really know. Religion has never been about scripture in any form for me. I can not turn to the bible to make my decisions for me. I guess that is my objection in this case… Why would an all loving god ask for the sacrifice of self in his name… I guess that just doesn’t really make sense to me.

  5. Lazaro says:

    Yes James, a gift life is but does not a gift have a giver? Are you grateful for the gift of life? So are you grateful to ‘random movements of chemicals’? can one be thankful to that?

    let me ask you this: if life was generated from what you describe how can a statement generated by that same randomness have any meaning? At least you don’t discount the existence of God, because if does require faith to say that there is no God

    I understand how you feel about God’s Revealed Word, I felt that way once too. Actually the Bible doesn’t make decisions for me either, but since it is His Word it’d be best if I followed what He commands. If I profess to love and trust in Him why wouldn’t obey what He has to say?

    God doesn’t ask us to die a martyr’s death for Him He only asks us to be His witnesses (Acts 1:8), if being a witness means dying a martyr’s death so be it…

    Why doesn’t it make sense? I understand if it doesn’t but do you have a good reason for it not making sense? Is it revolting? Is it counterintuitive?

    Thanks for the comment!

  6. Katryna says:

    I don’t know you, but I’m going to assume that you are saying what you would or wouldn’t do in the comfort of your home in front of your computer. I, too, am a Christian and I tried to think of what I would do if forced to declare my allegiance to someone other than Christ with my life at stake. You know what conclusion I came up with? I don’t know. There is no way to know and in my humble opinion, it’s insulting to speculate. You weren’t there. I hope you never are. But, 7-month old daughter or not, there is no way to know what you would do or say unless you’re there and for that same reason there is no way you can judge the “convert to Islam” for what he did.

  7. sandrar says:

    Hi! I was surfing and found your blog post… nice! I love your blog. 🙂 Cheers! Sandra. R.

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