LordStorm, welcome to A2K.
You've asked some loaded questions, for which there are no simple answers. Some of us, myself included, consider ourselves Christians. Others here consider themselves athiests, agnostics, Buddhists, Jews or followers of other faiths. You will find no consensus.
Matters of faith require personal study and searching one's own heart. You cannot inherit a set of personal beliefs, nor can you unquestioningly buy into a particular interpretation of religious standards. In order to have an authentic, personal value system, you must figure it out for yourself. Your own mind, heart and experiences will lead the way.
I have been a Christian for many years, but my own beliefs are not exactly the same as anyone else I know. That is true for everyone. And, as our lives progress, our beliefs often evolve. It is a lifetime search...not something that can easily be answered in a few sentences.
These are basic, essential questions. I wish you clarity as you begin your search.