Is Christianity a Copycat Religion?

by Ryan Pauly

Last night, I attended the first night of the two-day reTHINK student apologetics conference put on by Stand to Reason. Sean McDowell gave an incredible presentation answering the question, “Is Christianity a copycat religion?” This argument has resurfaced today on the internet and is challenging many Christians. It becomes hard to defend against attacks when we don’t know the facts behind this challenge. Now, I want to share the five reasons that Sean gave of how the mystery religions did not influence Christianity. (These reasons come directly from Sean McDowell’s presentation.)

1.Christianity has Jewish roots.

When studying Christianity, we see that it has Jewish roots. The basics of Christianity do not come from other mythological gods or other mystery religions.

2. Parallels are weak.

There may be certain parallel terms, but there is little evidence of parallel concepts. Even though similar vocabulary is used like death and resurrection, these terms have very different meanings. The death of the other gods was not like Jesus’ death and their “resurrection” was not the same. Be careful and understand what a person means when they use similar vocabulary.

3. Parallels prove nothing.

Even though there are similarities between a myth and an actual event, this doesn’t prove that the historical event never happened.

4. Dating the mystery religions.

The story that is going around the internet is that the events surrounding Osiris and other mythological gods came first and that Christianity copied parts of those religions…


Is Christianity a Copycat Religion? | Coffeehouse Questions