Christians do seem to love conversion stories. It seems I can’t read the web pages of most (but certainly not all) apologists and ministries without reading some story about how an “angry atheist” found Jesus, and has found peace. It certainly seems to make other Christians feel good about their beliefs when other people also find reasons to believe.
While I grant that Christianity is growing, largely because of birth rates in Africa, and evangelical conversion efforts in east Asia, looking closer to home the picture isn’t so rosy, as the religious “none’s” have been growing significantly over the last two decades, mostly at the expensive of Christianity. I’m sure, if I looked hard enough, I could find at least two deconversion stories for every western conversion story that is presented.
But here’s the thing: These stories don’t tell us what is true. The fact that people are convinced of something, or that their life got “better”, is not good evidence that the belief is true. Similarly, deconversion stories, regardless of how prominent the person is, don’t tell us that Christianity is false. The truth value of a proposition isn’t affected by what people believe.
A few days ago Capturing Christianity posted something I agree with. He posted:
When a celebrity walks away from the Faith, it gives you this many good reasons to reconsider your trust in Christ: 0
The same is true when somebody converts. It also gives you no reason to believe that you have good reasons to “trust in Christ.” With this caveat, this is one of the few times I find myself agreeing with one of his posts.
My point is this: Christians, please stop posting your feel good stories about people converting to Christianity, as if it is a good reason to believe. As a skeptic, there’s only one reason I would ever want to hear about a conversion story: They actually provided good intellectual reasons for their decision. As it stands every conversion story I’ve ever come across has been because of emotional reasons, or employed fallacious reasoning. Good objective evidence, and sound reasoning, for what they believe is still not there!