John the Baptiser said that believers are A Dime a Dozen. Admittedly, he didn’t say it that way, but that is what he meant when he told to his Jewish audience:
“Do not begin to say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham for our father,’ for I say to you that from these stones God is able to raise up children to Abraham” (Luke 3:8).
Back in the day it was very common for our friends, and maybe even ourselves, to say something like, “I don’t go to church anymore but I was raised in a church.” Since then, less and less children have seen as much as the inside of a Sunday School and have little idea of any spiritual heritage.
I do not see this as all Doom and Gloom. Many young people whom I have spoken to, because they do not have any particular church affiliation, have been less likely to park conversations about God in a “I used to be” Dead-Zone.
Unless the religion handed down to us issues forth as the “Pure and undefiled religion” that James speaks of in James 1:27, it is worthless. Religion determines behaviour. Look at the trajectory of your life and you will sooner or later see the impact that your heartfelt beliefs have had on its course; therein lies your true religion.
Everyone believes in God. An atheist is just a person who has chosen to deny that which is obvious to them and to everyone else.
Jesus focuses our belief system on his true identity—He is the Saviour of the world. Forgiveness of sins is possible only for them that believe that he is the Christ, the Son of the living God:
“Therefore I said to you that you will die in your sins; for unless you believe that I am He, you will die in your sins” (John 8:24).