What A Christian Needs

I suppose that title is going to be misread but the post is about what I read, about the things one christian needs. I am about to unashamedly hack his post with comment and to be complete will comment on some of the comments with commentary of my own. The original post can be found here. I’ll reformat it slightly for readability.

He starts with a bunch of … er, a resume. Apparently this is required to blog on that site? It doesn’t help the content which is probably why magazines don’t put the credits on the cover. meh

His post is entitled “Why I Don’t Believe in Atheism” – I’m not sure why the word ‘in’ got shorted on the capitalization plan. Anyway, he starts out with a smug and flippant remark as if to say that the bible says so, so it’s true, now STFU!

“In the beginning, God….” (Genesis 1:1)
Nowhere does the Bible try to prove the existence of God.  He is. Period.
Deal with it, earthlings.

That’s not so bad. A writer should set the tone right up front, right?

Humanistic evangelists and atheistic peddlers are sure that we mindless theists have never considered the superior evidence for the positions they hold. Surely, if we did, they think, we would renounce the church and join them.
Once again, believers are lumped together by those who  “just don’t get it” as the terminally naive, the hopelessly hopeful, the unthinking uneducated and the irrationally illiterate.
Most of the solid believers I know have considered atheism at one time or other. I did, while in college.  This is not to say I joined the humanist society of Birmingham or majored in skepticism at Birmingham-Southern. But I read some of the stuff, talked to a few of the people, thought about the ramifications of it all, and made my choice to take my stand with believers.
I’ve never regretted it.
Here’s why.

Well then, that makes whatever he’s going to say next obviously true because he thought about it. Okay then, with credentials like that it’s no wonder the christian faith is losing adherents left and right.

1) As a rule, atheists tend to be a pretty miserable lot, while the best Christians I know are also the most put-together, positive, and effective people in the room.
I heard someone say once, “The devil has no godly old people.” Indeed. We could add that the Lord also seems to have all the best-mannered, generous-hearted, goal-oriented achievers. If you look at the product of atheism and Christianity, there is no contest.

Apparently this guy has met a LOT of atheists and he must think well of us indeed if he will only compare us to the best christians he knows rather than, you know, christians in general. I can only guess what ‘put-together, positive, and affective’ people are in his language,  but the dictionary indicates that christians might require assembly (batteries not included); that they are not negative or at least the best christians he knows are not negative; finally he doesn’t mention what they are effective at but I’m pretty sure he doesn’t simply mean effective at filling the offering  basket.

2) Since faith is required for either position, choosing to believe this amazing universe came together by chance and will go out the same way requires far more faith than this Alabama farm boy can muster.  As has been said in the book by this title, “I don’t have faith enough to be an atheist.”

Wow, it’s a twofor. While making skewed Pascal’s Wager he throws in an argument from ignorance. That’s a one-two punch that atheists just won’t be able to stand up against.

3) While it’s true a large portion of Christians have probably not investigated various apologetic aspects–evidence for the resurrection, the historicity of Jesus, the integrity of Scriptures– a great many have.  I sat in the room with Dr. Carl F. H. Henry in the summer of 1978 as he said to some of us, “Christianity is the only world religion that has come through the scientific revolution and emerged intact.”  Some of the others are fighting tooth and claw to keep modern technology from taking a look at their authoritative writings.

I think what he means is that christians generally don’t read their own holy text or any of the arguments supportive of it, given as evidence. He digs back 35 years for a statement by some guy that christianity is getting through the scientific revolution intact. Really? a 35 year old quote? I wonder if all his material and thinking is that old. He’s probably not heard of new atheism under that rock he is living under. Somebody should tell him that we have computers and the Internet now…. oh wait.

4) I do like the old line of reasoning that goes: “If the atheist is true and after death, we all disappear into nothingness, then as a Christian I have lost nothing. But if Jesus Christ is true and after death life just begins to get interesting, then the atheist is in a lot of trouble.” What about that can they not see?

Now he is going to make up for not putting Pascal’s Wager out there full on. By old, he means really old. He also assumes that if he’s right about an afterlife that his wager is correct but what if my wager is? He’s not going to broach that subject because it would require him to do things like search for evidence and explain how he is right and everyone else is wrong. I’m not holding my breath waiting for him to explain anything.

5) If we know people by their fruits, then philosophies should identify themselves the same way. So, does anyone know any charitable ministry ever started by the atheists? Show me one and I can show you a hundred hospitals and colleges, children’s homes and crisis centers begun by Christ-followers.

Wow, he really has been under a rock for 35 years. His math is bad, bad like a politician trying to get financing for a bridge to nowhere. I’d like to straighten him out on how atheism is not a philosophy but that would require talking to him and my life is too short already to waste it helping the guy.

6) There are the miracles, such as the existence of Holy Scriptures (the uniformity of them, the prophecies, the clarity, and a thousand other aspects), the existence of the Man of Galilee (His birth, life, death, and resurrection; His teachings and promises, etc), the existence of the Church (so flawed, without its divine nature, surely it would have vanished long ago), and the existence of honest inquiry among believers (a sure sign, if you ask me, that God’s people are into Truth and nothing else).

If you just read and think this guy is living in his own world, I’ll agree with you. Listing stuff from the bible as miracles is silly, ignorant even, but calling the ‘Church’ flawed is an understatement that he follows with blaming god that it has not vanished already. If you’re following along, he’s just said that his god is to blame for all the pedophile priests, thieving preachers, and witch burning etc. If it weren’t for his god the church would have long ago vanished and we’d have these criminals incarcerated already. Well, it’s good to know he’s not supportive of the bad guys.

7) My testimony–and yours–on the power of Jesus Christ who changed our lives. And, as C. S. Lewis pointed out, if a skeptic scoffs that my life is so far inferior to what a true Christian should look like, I do not argue with that, but reply that my life is still so far beyond what it would have been without Christ.

Without his god he’s a worthless waste of human flesh or something close to that…. so he admits, I think. Definitely not prosperity sermon stuff here. He’s just thankful someone (even an imaginary friend) was kind enough to save him from his own stupidity and immorality because surely without god he’d be raping and killing and boozing and stuff.

The fact is we need God. We need Him for the simple reason that, as the prophet said, “it is not in man who walks to direct his own steps.”

Except for those who do direct their own steps, it is in them. He calls it a simple reason so let me paraphrase that for you: christians are people that can’t live their lives without someone telling them how. They are incapable of directing their own lives in a moral way or even at all. Without guidance from ceiling cat they’d all be buzzard lunch… I guess.

  1. I need God to make me more than I would ever be otherwise.  I need growth.
  2. I need God to save me from my natural self-centeredness. I need love..
  3. I need God to take care of friends and loved ones with real needs who are outside my ability to help.  I need prayer.
  4. I need God to guide me in decisions since I do not know what tomorrow holds and thus what to do with today’s opportunities.  I need wisdom.
  5. All by myself, I make a pretty small (and miserable) package.

Can you say self loathing? As long as he believes in a god, he’ll never know if #1 is true. That’s logic from a country boy, as he claims. I think he’s screwed on #2 because god doesn’t seem to help many believers on this problem, not even him, but we’ll get to that in  a minute. Apparently his ability to help and his prayers are not directed to those who are not his friends and loved ones – there is some real charity for you in #3. Maybe his prayers for his loved ones are why god doesn’t have time to feed everyone? God gives him wisdom? I wonder if his god gives him stock market tips? Maybe not but it leaves you wondering what kind of wisdom it is he’s getting to make use of today’s opportunities. He sure didn’t use them to make a convincing argument to atheists. That #5 has some special meaning when you consider that his god is not real. Think about it.

Thank God, I am not alone here on this small planet.  The living God has singled this one out and has dwelled among us and made it possible for us to live on a higher plane here and with Him in Heaven forever.

When everything else is said, fall back on ‘self-centeredness’ and conceit. This planet was made for humans. No clue here what the rest of the universe was made for, but this planet, it was made by god for humans. Apparently all humans, not just the ones that believe. When you think about it this last bit doesn’t even make sense. How does he know god singled this one out? The bible doesn’t talk about other planets… hmmm, maybe his god is telling him something we don’t know.

I need God to get me to Heaven. And because I need God, He sent Jesus.
I could not be an atheist on my worst day.  God has done far too much for me to be so ungrateful.

I’m guessing he doesn’t read that holy text. He needs free will and to make the choice to accept the jesus as his savior. Yes, he said it, because he needs god and to go to heaven his god sent a blood sacrifice. So even as messed up and miserable as he says he is without a god, he still couldn’t be an atheist as if it’s a bad thing. What he really needs a god for is so he can brag that he’s not an atheist. Well, at least not an atheist about his deity of choice. Oh wait, he means he’s not an ingrate because his god did so much for him. I bet those starving children who died while you were reading this would gladly have been converts if his god would have kept them from starving to death. Believers all too often come of sounding so god damned smug, like they are special and their god cares about them… piss on the starving, god would save them if they would just accept jesus into their hearts.

Yes, until they are on the same page as their jesus was in their book was I’m going to be critical. So far there hasn’t been anything substantive, just a lot of pride. I’m told that stuff goeth before a fall.

I wonder if the comments will be any better? Let’s see:

Great article! I always love it when I hear an atheist say that all Christians are a bunch of uneducated, brainwashed people that don’t know how to think for themselves, when I am usually far more educated than they are! I also received that education at one of the most humanistic, secular universities in the world, and yet I believe! The point made about what it boils down to in the end is true too. I always tell them that in the end if I’m wrong, I’ve lost nothing b/c I’ll never know I was wrong! However, they will know if they’re the ones who are wrong. People seriously need to think about that!(:

Wow, smug pride is just dripping everywhere here. All that education and all it produces is a restatement of Pascal’s Wager. I must have missed something in school. People have thought about it. You can find their refutations of Pascal’s wager easily on the Internet, people seriously need to read those refutations.

Now for the smug conceited smartass reply to a non-believer?

Wow, I know what you mean. Its so much easier to believe that by random chance charged particles appeared out of no where to come together and randomly form just the right chemicals that in turn would randomly come together to form the right compounds so that they could randomly come together and make organisms that would someday crawl out of the ooze to become you and me, right?
So much better than believing in a loving God that purposefully created us and pursues us to provide life and that life abundantly evidenced by the changed lives of those who truly become His follower.

Clearly this fellow is well read and quite highly educated… he just doesn’t use it much when commenting. Not to worry, Timothy nails in the next comment.

Christianity is believing in what you know for sure – wit hall evidences – reasons – logic etc. Unlike comments of people blinded by pre-conceived ideas!

Do you think Tim is alone? Nope:

How true! Athiests do seem to be very miserable people. They are always arguing something and questioning every single thing to no end. They tend to be negative and, more than not, rude. It must be so exhausting always on the defense of something that can’t be defended.

Why, yes, yes we do question everything. It’s called honest inquiry and if I remember right the author of this post in question seems to think that is a trait of believers. I guess not. That last sentence makes me wonder why believers are not constantly falling asleep as exhausted as they must be. Just WOW.

I don’t really have the stomach for more comments, though there were a few. All offering nothing more than smug conceit and Pascal’s Wager and none of them seem to be aware of the refutations of the same. They seem blissfully unaware of any other thinking except for believer-speak and what the preacher told them. You’d think at least one of them would catch the conceit and pride in their language and caution the others of their sin but that doesn’t seem to happen very often.

  1. My response?

    1. Factually wrong and without compelling evidence to back it up.
    2. Doesn’t understand Epistemology 101, so his conclusion is made before the premises are considered. So much for being educated.
    3. Doesn’t understand why history plays an important role in historical claims.
    4. Doesn’t understand why Pascal’s wager is logic fail.
    5. Atheists populate all kinds of charities, from Doctors Without Borders to… hang on, what am I doing?

    This guy doesn’t care about what’s true.

    He doesn’t care about how he comes to know any of this stuff.

    He’s just trying to sell his opinion to a gullible audience.

    He’s an idiot.

    He doesn’t deserve my time any more than he might appreciate my criticisms.

    He’s proud to give voice to his idiocy and will remain a person determined to be a religious bigot until he decides to question his own assumptions. i won’t hold my breath.

    • And believers wonder how they get a bad reputation…..

      • It’s the scope and depth of ignorance of what consitutes good thinking from the commentators who praise this pile of bullshit that is breathtaking.

        • That is what inspired my post. It is not just the blogger but much of his audience too… and even some of them claiming education and intelligence. The complaint about non-believers always questioning things was brilliant

  2. Someone should tell this so-called Christian that faith is not the same as stupid. When Jesus said “Lest ye be as children…” he did not mean “lest ye regress to childlike drivel” — He meant preserve the ability to view the world and the kingdom of God with wonder.

    One does not have to be an atheist to respect the many reasons people choose atheism, It’s not as if those who claim to believe in God behave as if they do.

    Most of them are simply afraid to think for themselves. They refuse to use reason. Which means they refuse to use the mind, which is the closest we can get to being like God.

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