The Cold Universe Just Doesn't Care

Posted by Worldview Warriors On Thursday, February 2, 2017 0 comments

by Steve Risner

“I admit it is scary to realize that religions are very likely wrong, as evidence to their God's existences is spurious at best, and we are little more than carbon-based lifeforms that have a finite and insignificant existence in the cold, unforgiving universe that plays no favorites.”

Let's unpack this enormous statement recently made by an atheist friend of mine. We'll have to take a bit at a time. It is true that most, if not all, “religions” are wrong. I believe that religion in and of itself is one reason so many reject God. They've done it all wrong and then reject God because of it. We've covered that before—how “religion” is what we do with our minds while a relationship with Christ is done with our hearts. “Religion” that is usually talked about is most often about doing something to gain favor. This is not Christianity at all since we cannot earn anything, as even the best we can offer is filthy rags to the Creator of all. Christianity is not your typical religion, as Christianity is about allowing the Savior of mankind to live His life through us. It's not about earning salvation since that isn't possible.

There are a number of what I will call “lesser” Christian versions out there that put some sort of earning into its Gospel message. But it's precisely the opposite of real salvation through Jesus Christ. It's true that genuine salvation through Christ results in a changed life—a life filled with good works for the glory of God. But these good works are not what we are saved by. We are saved by grace when we put our faith in Christ. That's it. But, again, a life changed by surrender to the Holy One will result in a life of service to God and to man. If we look at “religion” as something we do to earn something, Christianity doesn't fit so well. So I agree with my atheist friend that religion is most likely wrong. Christianity is the exception since it is very different, and some would say is not a religion at all but a relationship. Most religions are wrong and this would include his.

Atheism does not get a pass here. Atheism is no less a religion than Christianity or Islam or Hinduism. There are a variety of ways to define atheism. There are a variety of ways to define a religion; we looked at one way to describe religion above. An atheist, in its most basic sense in the West, is one who does not believe there is evidence to support the existence of God or gods and does not believe in the afterlife. You can clearly see by the quote we are referencing this week that my friend has conveniently stated both of these things for us. The idea fits for his brand of atheism. The basic idea (we're talking a very broad sense) behind a religion is that it takes a position on God (or gods) and the afterlife. In most cases, but not necessarily all, we would also have the acts that accompany the religion—its religious practices. But not all religions have specific practices. Based on this general idea, I am admitting that Christianity can be considered a religion. However, since atheism takes a position on God and the afterlife, as my friend has done here, it too should be considered a religion. Atheism affirms the non-existence of God and the afterlife. Do you see what this makes atheism qualify as? It's a belief system—a faith.

We can even go a step further. Atheism has an origins myth, a story about where the universe came from and how life began on the earth. It has a story about where humans came from. Sounds like a religion, does it not? There is also experience. Darwin and others claim to have had experiences that led them to their beliefs. In Darwin's case, it was a trip on the HMS Beagle. Then there are clearly “missionaries” of atheism—Richard Dawkins even said in one of his books that he hoped religious people would reject their faith in their religion and, essentially, convert to his. Atheism has its own documents containing what we would consider doctrines. There are even atheist “churches” that have popped up. There are other comparisons, but I feel this has given enough support for my claim that atheism is a religion. I believe the religion of atheism is one of the many religions that are wrong.

My friend goes on to say that “evidence for their [religion's] God is spurious at best.” In other words, he's saying that evidence for the existence of God is fake or exaggerated. I have written 3 blog posts on my favorite evidences for God's existence, though there are many other evidences. You can find those blog posts here, here, and here. If you have questions or comments concerning these arguments, please let me know.

But let's be honest here with this atheist's claim: he doesn't mean there's no evidence. He means there is no evidence that he will accept. He means there is no naturalistic or materialistic evidence for a God that is supernatural and not material. This is similar to a deaf person saying he can't see the sound coming from a whistle, so the sound doesn't exist. Or if a blind person said he can't smell or hear the color blue so it doesn't exist. If you limit yourself in what you'll accept for evidence, you'll likely miss something. In this case, something very important is being overlooked. When I'm in a discussion with an unbeliever and they say, “There is no evidence for God's existence,” I generally will first ask them what sort of evidence they will accept. Because most atheists I've encountered are not really atheists (meaning they don't believe in God) but deniers (which means they're saying they don't believe when they really do), I rarely get a solid answer to this question. What I'm saying is most atheists actually do believe in God. They hate Him or, at the very least, are very angry with Him. That's why many spend so much time arguing about Him. They are passionate about it, as is evidenced by my friend here and the long discussion he was willing to engage in with me. They do believe in Him but deny Him. There's a big difference, I feel.

My friend goes on to say we are carbon-based life forms. He's right. But we're more than that. We are created in the image of God. Every person is created in the image of God. That's heavy and awesome at the same time. This atheist goes on to proclaim the hope of atheism. What hope, you ask? The hope of nothingness, meaninglessness, insignificance, and cold. This is the religion of atheism in short—you're no one and you don't matter. Christianity's message is one of real hope: God loves you and cares for you and has great things planned for you. The old saying is so true: I'd rather live like a Christian and find out when I die that I was wrong than live like an atheist and find out when I die I was wrong. There's way too much at stake. Because the truth is, even if you're a “good atheist” and are the nicest person of your generation, you're guilty of sin. We all are. And that means you need a savior. The good news is there is a savior who paid the price for you and all you need to do is accept Him. How easy is that?

Next week we will discuss the second part of this quote which reads as follows: “However, once you accept your insignificance, you can still make the most out of the one existence you have, rather than squander it, waiting to die for an eternal afterlife that likely is not there.” This one is also a doozy and I look forward to sharing some very encouraging things with you. Please comment below and tell me what you thought of this writing.

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