During an interview with his girlfriend, Danica Patrick, Aaron Rodgers discussed his Christian upbringing, and why he left the faith.
NOTE: If you’d like to watch the video instead of reading the article, click the video below, or click here. They say the same thing! 🙂
His parents, Darla and Edward, are Christian, and raised their children in what looked to be an evangelical household.
Aaron was involved in the popular Christian youth and young adult organization, Young Life, and went on mission trips with the organization, he started questioning Christianity in High School.
I understand Aaron’s questioning, and I think everyone of us goes through a heavy season of doubt. I did as a teen, and again as an adult. So instead of leaving the faith, I decided to search for anwers and enrolled at Biola Univeristy, specifically to earn a degree that would help answer those questions; Christian Apologetics. So I’m gonna break down his concerns, and with the Lord’s guidance, do my best to answer them.
“I had some good friendships along the way that helped me to figure out exactly what I wanted to believe in. Ultimately, it was that rules and regulations and binary systems don’t really resonate with me,” the NFL star explained.
When asked by Danica when he started to question religion, Rodgers replied high school.
“Religion can be a crutch, it can be something that people have to have to make themselves feel better. Because it’s set up binary, it’s us and them, saved and unsaved, heaven and hell, it’s enlightened and heathen, it’s holy and righteous … that makes a lot of people feel better about themselves.”
Religion can and does make people feel better about themselves. Ignorance is bliss. But evidential faith? That’s a different story.
When it comes to Christianity, is it purely a feeling of peace when Hillsong plays at church, or is it true belief and knowledge that Jesus Christ died and rose again, and did it out of his love us?
I’d like to think that Aaron is interested in evidence, so where does the evidence lead? We’ve heard that Jesus was a good man and prophet, but would a good man and nice prophet make claims that he would die and rise again, only to have it fall through? If his claims didn’t come through, then Jesus is a liar (and not a good man or prophet) and Christianity is a farce.
As for his claims that religion is “us versus them,” good news… it isn’t. Christianity isn’t for a select group at the popular table, it’s an endless table that has seats for everyone. It’s an open invitation; all in their brokeness are invited. But God didn’t design us as robots. We are free thinkers and have the choice to decline the invitation.
And some may argue that although they are of a different religion, they still believe in the same God that Christians do. But again, it comes down to evidence and common sense. The three major religions (Christianity, Judaism, Islam), for example, make VERY different claims about Jesus…so different that he can’t be all at the same time.
So two are clearly wrong. But which two? Click here to watch my comparison video on the three, or just click on the video below.
And when we come to know Jesus, like a parent who loves their child, he’s going to require things of us that we will probably fight to give up. He wants our love and our whole heart, because he wants to fill it with his goodness. And like a parent, he knows what’s better for us, and what can harm us. So of course he’s gonna want us to turn away from such things that only harm us in the end; like sin. And like a good parent, He wants the best for his children. Why? Because he loves them. God is love. God is discipline. And both are what you show to someone you truly, madly, care about.
The reality is, when one has a solid relationship with Jesus, those desires from their old life just aren’t as appealing anymore. Will you have a temptation here or there? Sure. But like in a dating relationship, when you finally know what it’s like to be treated and loved right, you have no desire for losers.
Another thing he mentioned was a verse in Revelation that made it sound as if only 144,000 people will be saved.
They say, ‘Oh, I’ve got Jesus and I’m saved. I’m going to heaven and there’s only 144,000 of us going even though there’s 7 billion on the planet.’”
Aaron is talking about the 144,000 people mentioned in Revelation. Let’s clear this up. According to Pastor David Jeremiah, they’re chosen men of God from the twelve tribes of Israel who are going to evangelize because the world will be even worse than it is now, and obviously, it’s the end times. These guys will be virgins, and why? He assumes that because they’ll be so busy evangelizing, they won’t have time for families.
Besides, it’s impossible to only have 144,000 people in Heaven. Why?
Take a look at Revelation 7:9, in accordance with what John saw.
After this I looked, and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb. They were wearing white robes and were holding palm branches in their hands.
Aaron concluded: “I don’t know how you can believe in a God who wants to condemn most of the planet to a fiery hell. What type of loving, sensitive, omnipresent, omnipotent being wants to condemn his beautiful creation to a fiery hell at the end of all this?”
Again, God is like our parents. Our parents don’t want us to get hurt. God doesn’t want to condemn us to hell. God is love. And love is just. Love also disciplines.
So many people will say that the God of the Old Testament and the New Testament are two different Gods. One is a disciplinarian. The other is love.
No…God is one in the same. The Trinity…for obvious reasons.
Did you know that Jesus talked about Hell more than anyone in the Bible? YEP!
Because he’s evil and mean? Or because he doesn’t want us to go there?
We aren’t robots. Jesus is going to let us CHOOSE where we’re gonna go. And he’s warned us about hell so much, because he doesn’t want us to go there. And at the same time, Jesus showed us his love so much, because he wants us to join him there one day!
But guys, let’s do our research! I’ve included links to my sources below, as well as helpful websites and Youtube chanels to help answer your questions!