Seems to me that if Christianity was self-evident, and there was one true god who wanted everyone to join up, there would be no other religions
. How could there be? The one true religion should be like water, or air. It would not have to compete in the global marketplace with other beliefs, because as soon as people heard about it, they would realize it made sense and immediately adopt it.
There are no substitutes for water or air, and everyone needs them to survive. The one true religion should be like that. No preaching, convincing or force should be necessary. Missionaries should not have to go around trying to convert people. Anyone who is not a Christian should be obviously suffering, far less happy and successful than believers, like someone deprived of water or air.
You don't have to show up on someone's doorstep to persuade them to breathe air--you should not have to persuade anyone into the one true religion! No apologetics or complicated arguments should be needed, because there should not be any logical holes that need plugging.
The holy book should be amazingly transcendent, prophetic and full of useful information with no need for extensive study to comprehend its meaning. No scientific discovery or invention or law should make the religion look silly or outdated. Everything in the religion should match objective reality without question.You should not have to invent a powerful, scheming devil to explain why the world is the way it is. In sum, nobody should have to turn off their brain, "let go and let god", surrender fully to the holy spirit, have the correct attitude of submission, "open their heart'', or be in desperate emotional straits to believe.
Certainly no new religions should be arising after the establishment of Christianity, like Islam or Mormonism or Scientology. And the ones that pre-date, like Judaism and Hinduism should have disappeared as soon as the one true faith came on the scene. Christianity itself should not have to change with the times, either. Truth should always be truth, right?
We can see that is clearly not the case.
It took centuries for the heathens and pagans in Europe to be beaten into submission by Christian rulers. The largest group of Christians is Catholic, and that holds sway mainly in poor countries where indigenous people were conquered, enslaved and forced to convert. The Jews did not buy into the Christ deal, even though they were supposedly right there watching all the miracles. A billion Hindus are largely unimpressed. Buddhists likewise see no need to change. Islam is growing faster worldwide than Christianity. More people throughout history have rejected the bible than have accepted it as truth.
Even the people who accept it have to ignore most of it or else it makes no sense! And it is not like any of the other major religions is any better. Bad things happen to believers of every faith. People have to do everything for themselves, no matter what they believe. Prayer doesn't work, ever, for anyone. This god just doesn't seem to be up to snuff.
In contrast to what we would expect, some of the most successful, peaceful and stable regions worldwide are where most people are atheists. Many atheists are familiar with different religious traditions, or even used to practice a faith, so they know what they are rejecting. If there is an all-powerful god in charge, he is doing a very good job of pretending not to care about any of this.