The World’s Debt to Jesus Christ
The West’s Christian heritage is being erased from our consciousness by our political, educational, and media elites. Somehow, the scientific and technological products that originated in the West now arose in a vacuum. Universities like Harvard, Yale, Oxford, and Cambridge have been going to great lengths to minimize or even deny Christians had anything to do with their establishment, but their debt to Christians is undeniable.
The fact is everyone on earth owes a great debt to Jesus Christ because those influenced by his teachings were directly responsible for virtually everything that makes our lives the most enjoyable and productive in human history.
Christians, and the Jews and other non-believers living and working within the Christian milieu of Europe and North America in the past 500 years, gave the world the notions of inherent human rights. They forced the abolition of human sacrifice, slavery, infanticide, and cannibalism wherever they had influence. They drove the criminalization of pedophilia, rape, and torture. They invented universities, hospitals, modern banks, universal literacy, education degrees, academic accreditation, property rights, mass production, intellectual property rights, separation of church and state, freedom of speech, and many more benefits and “rights” that we take for granted. They developed the foundation for virtually every invention that we enjoy today (cell phones, cars, planes, computers, air conditioners, televisions, and tens of thousands of other inventions).
Christianity was the soil that allowed the notion that adultery, even if done by men with unmarried women or with their slaves, is wrong. It gave us the novel ideas of civil rights, women’s rights, children’s rights, animal rights, environmentalism, and equitable welfare program and public health care.
We need to ask: What do Isaac Newton, Leonhard Euler, Carl Gauss, Wilhelm Leibniz, Antoine-Laurent Lavoisier, Johannes Kepler, Galileo Galilei, Louis Pasteur, Nicolaus Copernicus, Michael Faraday, James Clerk Maxwell, Dmitri Mendeleev, Leonardo da Vinci, and hundreds of other scientific and mathematical geniuses who founded our modern world have in common? What do Albert Einstein, Niels Bohr, J. Robert Oppenheimer, Edward Teller, Werner Heisenberg, Erwin Schrödinger, Paul Dirac, Linus Pauling, Richard Feynman, Max Planck, Edwin Hubble, Francis Crick, Enrico Fermi, Jonas Salk, Alexander Fleming, and many other 20th century figures have in common?
The answer is that all these figures have an undeniable debt to Christianity’s influence on their own work. The “rational” Western Christian environment they lived in allowed and encouraged free inquiry. It gave recognition, honor, authority, and financial rewards to those who succeeded in advancing knowledge. It gave them the opportunity of obtaining an education within institutions created by Christians, and it provided them with the means to formulate and refine their ideas and it circulated their work across the world.
Without Christianity, the foundations of modern science and technology could’ve never been made since of the four largest world religions, it was only Christianity’s theology, cosmology, and cultural practices that allowed for their establishment, and eventual spread across the world.
This is why there are no Moslem, Hindu, or Buddhist figures outside the West and its influences that can be shown to have impacted the whole world comparable to these figures. There’s no doubt men like C.V. Raman, Satyendra Nath Bose, Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar, and the frighteningly brilliant Srinivasa Ramanujan made great contributions; but they were done completely within the Western scientific and mathematical establishments built by Christians.
Despite the world's tendency to dismiss the influence of Christianity upon the modern world by pretending all it did was exist prior to modern institutions, the truth is the opposite: So overwhelming is the entire modern secular scientific world’s reliance on foundations and formulas developed or improved upon by Christians that it is absurd to deny it.
We’ve forgotten that our civilization’s privileges are new and undeniably superior to the alternatives in human history. Whenever other great civilizations like the Chinese, Indian, Japanese, or Korean nations encountered Christian missionaries, they always revamped their cultures to align themselves with the Christian message, because the benefits Christianity brought were so blatantly superior to the average person as well as the state.
Thus, they abandoned slavery and polygamy, set up charities, hospitals, and universities, implemented scientific instruction and widespread education of the masses to make literacy universal, reduced or eliminated the absolute power of the monarch, and established rules detailing the inherent rights of their citizens – even if they rejected the Christian doctrine that directly caused those benefits in the West.
“Christianity” is why all civilized nations have laws that are universal among all civilized nations. Without it, there wouldn’t be any freedom of speech, freedom of and from religion, freedom of travel, freedom of assembly, property rights, and so forth. The world didn’t get them from Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, Sikhism, Shintoism, Taoism, or the Bahá'í—they came from Christianity and from those whose moral compass was guided by it. It is why someone can leave and ridicule the dominant religion without fear in Salt Lake City or Rome but get killed if done in Mecca.
If Jesus Christ never existed, there never would’ve been an England, or France, or Spain, or Germany, or the United States.
Without Jesus Christ and his teachings, the world would be a very different, uglier, and much more miserable place. Half of our children would die before their fifth birthday, our average life expectancy would be below 40, and one out of every four of us would die violent deaths. Most of us would be peasant farmers ruled by superstition, and only a minority of us would even know how to read.
There’s no doubt Jesus has and is continuing to have the greatest positive impact on the world and everyone, regardless of country, race, religion, or culture, has directly benefitted from his influence.
Something to be grateful for when observing and hearing those trying to erase Christianity from history.
Note: This article is derived from this author’s upcoming book,"Is Jesus “God?"