What the Christian God Wants

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What the Christian God Wants is a list of questions about divinity and how each major Christian denomination believes their god answers the question. Each answer is sourced directly from an authoritative web site for the specific denomination.

Table

Question Anglican Assemblies of God Calvinist Eastern Orthodox Jehovah's Witness Lutheran Methodist Mormon Presbyterian Quaker Roman Catholic Seventh Day Adventist Southern Baptist United Church of Christ Unitarian
Did God give you a soul distinct from your body? Yes Yes Yes No Yes No Yes Yes Y/N Yes No Yes Y/N
Does God allow good people to enter Heaven? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Y/N Yes Yes Yes Y/N
Does God expect good deeds to get into Heaven? No No No Yes Yes No No No No No Yes Yes No No
Does God let evil people go to Hell? Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes No Yes Y/N Yes No Yes No
Was Jesus God incarnate? Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes No Yes Y/N Yes Yes Yes No
Did God give people innate free will? No Yes No Yes Yes No No Yes No Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Does God want infants to be baptized? Yes No Yes Yes No Yes Yes No Yes No Yes No No Yes No
Does God permit abortion in circumstances like rape? Y/N No No No No Y/N Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes No Yes Yes
Does God think premarital sex is wrong? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No No Yes Yes Yes No No
Does God permit contraception? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes Y/N Yes Yes
Does God allow women to be ordained? Yes Yes Y/N No Yes Y/N Yes No Yes Yes No No No Yes Yes
Does God allow for biological evolution? Yes No Y/N Yes No Y/N Yes Y/N Yes Yes Yes No No Yes
Does God ensure that the bible is error free? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Y/N Yes No Y/N No Yes Yes Yes No No
Does God prefer worship on Sundays? Yes Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes Yes No Yes No Yes No
Does God condemn homosexuality? Y/N Yes Yes Yes Yes Y/N Yes Yes Y/N No Yes Yes Yes No No
Adherents in this denomination? 85,000,000 65,000,000 25,000,000 240,000,000 8,200,000 70,000,000 50,000,000 15,500,000 45,000,000 400,000 1,166,000,000 18,100,000 15,700,000 900,000 800,000

Purpose

The main reason I created this table is to illustration a problem with Christianity. Most Christians I've spoken with agree that their god wants everyone to obey his commandments, and has the ability to easily disseminate his commandments and make them clearly understood by all. If this is the case, why do Christians disagree on nearly every single one of them? To me, this shows a failure of the Christian god. Many Christians would argue that it shows a failing of people to understand the bible, but if the Christian god is all-knowing, he should have predicted this problem, and, if he's all-powerful, he has the ability to create a failure-proof way of getting his message across, like directly communicating to everyone's brain. Since this has not happened, he either doesn't want his commandments known to all, or is incapable of doing so.

Of course, this isn't just a Christian problem, every religion in history has had similar factions and a failure to agree on any theological issue. I'm willing to accept such a failure if either the god doesn't care if his people learn about his commandments, or if he's not all-powerful, and therefore unable to spread them.

I was inspired to create this table after meeting a Methodist minister who explained that their denomination doesn't believe in a soul separate from the body, a belief I had never encountered in my Christian life. This was quite a shock to me because, while I grew up, all the Christians I spoke with did, and I just assumed it was an intrinsic part of Christianity. This got me wondering how many other aspects of Christian theology were up for grabs, and, as it turns out, nearly all of them were.

By adding a number of adherents to table, it a helps give some perspective to how many Christians disagree on important issues. For example, around 1,200,000,000 Christians follow a church which says their god disapproves of birth control, but 630,000,000 do not. Obviously, this is not a definitive number since I'm still missing several major branches of Christianity.

Future Questions

This is a list of additional questions I want to add to the list when I have time to research them.

  • Does God allow Christians from other denominations to get to Heaven?
  • Does God condemn people who fight in wars?