Who benefits from religious conversion?

Is there some benefit to someone persuading a member of a faith to convert to another faith? Which religious institutions encourage their members to seek converts? Is there some incentive provided to the converter by his church? What benefits flow to the church which acquires members persuaded to convert or join? More (voting) power when dealing with politicians? Why would churches seek more power?

From a different perspective: what benefits, if any, flow to the converted or joiner? Would these benefits be significantly different from the benefits available from any organisation active in civil society; that is, organisations such as Rotary or some other group working for the betterment of society?

I have also been told that Christianity’s New Testament offers the following: ‘Only through me shall ye know God.’ Such a statement would surely have been made by Jesus only to those in his environment about 2,000 years ago.

Against that, the Hindus’ Krishna is reported to have said “Whatever god to whom you pray, it is I who will answer.’ Can both statements be true? Since these statements would have been directed to widely divergent audiences, in different places, at significantly separate times in history, without either knowing about the other … … !

The crucial issue here is – is there any need for religions to compete with one another? What would be the benefit of competition? Were we all, as individuals, to arrive at the single much-desired door by different paths, what could we say to one another?

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