Thank God for Atheists!

by Kim on June 2, 2006

I am sick and tired (Kim in rant mode again, Blonde - it’s the only mode I’ve got!) - I am sick and tired of the bad press Christians give atheists. Not because almost all my best friends are atheists, though they are (and Richard is a Methodist, so that’s close!), but because I myself am proud to be an atheist. As, of course, were the first Christians, who had the term flung at them by their pagan neighbours because they didn’t have a cult - i.e. a priesthood - and because they refused to acknowledge the deity of the emperor (which doesn’t seem to present a problem to the Religious Right!).

More to the point, the god in whom many Christians seem to believe actually deserves the sneering dismissal of so-called “protest” atheists like Marx, Nietzsche and Camus, who deny the existence of God precisely because they take God so seriously. Theirs is a “purifying atheism” (Simone Weil). They accurately see what these true-believers themselves don’t, viz. that their god is merely a reflection and projection of themselves, meeting their needs and satisfying their longings (again, the tribal deity of the Religious Right comes to mind). They thus stand in the idol-smashing tradition of the great Old Testament prophets.

As for the notion that the existence of God can can be “proved” by argument (like the cosmological, teleological and moral arguments), well, the demonstrations themselves are self-defeating because they reduce the statement “God exists” to a hypothesis, to a proposition that conceivably might not be the case (otherwise why argue it?). What Christians ought to be saying, however, is that the non-existence of God is inconceivable (which is the truth behind the so-called ontological argument). If we insist that God “exists”, we must be clear that this is not a statement of fact (let alone the best bet among probabilities) but a confession of faith. God (if you like) is a presupposition, not an inference. Or as Kierkegaard provocatively put it, “God does not exist, he is eternal.”

As for arguments from experience, either mundane or mystical, they get us nowhere. To the person who says, “God spoke to me in a dream”, the sceptic can quite properly reply, “You mean you dreamed God spoke to you.” Besides, how can we know that two people who have experiences of God are talking about the same object? We could only do so if we have independent access to this object - which by definition we don’t! As Wittgenstein observed, we can only determine whether two people mean the same thing when they speak of God by examining, not their experiences, but their lives - and that too is a matter of witness, not proof.

God, then, is not a being, not even the greatest being among beings, the “Supreme Being”; nor (pace Paul Tillich) is God the “Ground of Being”, or even Being itself. Against these gods we must indeed declare ourselves atheists. Rather, with the brilliant French theologian Jean-Luc Marion, it is best to think of God as the “God without Being”, i.e. the God who is LOVE, whom we know only in love, the God who is MYSTERY, whom we know only in ignorance. The God, in other words, who discloses himself to us in Jesus Christ.

Anyway, thank God for atheists! You might even think of them as paradoxical testimony to the reality of God. For as Chesterton wittily remarked, “If there were no God, there would be no atheists.”

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Where Have All the Good Atheists Gone? — On the Loss of Important Conversations. | Alastair's Adversaria
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1

DH 06.02.06 at 6:59 pm

It is dangerous to think of God asbeing no being when we know Jesus was resurrected in bodily. God exists and He is eternal. God exists is a statement of Faith AND a statement of fact. “If there were no God, there would be no atheists.” May be true to a point except I think otherwise in that people in the face of facts reject by way of rebellion just like when Jesus was asked “show me a sign” and Jesus response was “even if Moses was resurrected you still wouldn’t Believe.Mattew 16:1-4 A scripture comes to mind in Deutoronomy regarding atheists Deutoronomy 32:19-21

The LORD saw this and rejected them
because he was angered by his sons and daughters.

20 “I will hide my face from them,” he said,
“and see what their end will be;
for they are a perverse generation,
children who are unfaithful.

21 They made me jealous by what is no god
and angered me with their worthless idols.
I will make them envious by those who are not a people;
I will make them angry by a nation that has no understanding.

2

DH 06.02.06 at 7:00 pm

Also no one is calling the emperor a deity or Bush a deity.

3

Eugene McKinnon 06.03.06 at 12:10 am

In Canada we had a comedic duo known as Wayne and Shuster. They had a running sketch in which a private investigator living in ancient Rome had to solve crimes like the murder of Julius Caesar, the arson of Rome, and the threats being made to a chariot driver by the name of Judah Ben-Hur. At one point they mentioned the emergence of a religious group known as Christians.

W: Did you hear about this new group that believes that there is only one God.
S: Yeah, I mean they are an inch close to becoming atheists.

4

Eugene McKinnon 06.03.06 at 12:24 am

Hey Kim,

Were you around to remember the Ed Sullivan Show? You might have seen one of their many Roman private investigator sketches on the Ed Sullivan Show. Frank Shuster was the cousin of Joe Shuster who created the Superman Comic with Joe Siegel. And his son-in-law was the creator and producer of Saturday Night Live, Lorne Michaels.

If you have forgotten maybe this quote may jog your memory. It was from the Julius Caesar sketch.

Flavian interviewing Julius Caesar’s wife.

“I told him Julie don’t go! Julie don’t go! Julie don’t go!

“Ma’am you do have the right to remain silent!”

Eugene

5

Kim 06.03.06 at 1:52 am

Ed Sullivan’s “really big shew” was mandatory viewing in our house. I don’ remember that particular sketch, but I do remember the sketches. Have you been watching re-runs?!

6

Ben Myers 06.03.06 at 5:11 am

Great post, Kim. I’ve just posted on this over at Faith and Theology.

7

Aaron G 06.03.06 at 8:30 am

You seem to be declaring yourself an atheist in the “God who is” and a believer in the “God who isn’t” — is that a correct assessment?

I think it would be good to define “atheism” as there can be more than one kind.

8

Looney (aka Douglas) 06.03.06 at 2:08 pm

There is one atheist I admired: He sneered at all religion, but then sent his son to Lutheran church every Sunday and a very conservative private Christian education all through highschool.

That is what happens when an Atheist takes his survival of the fittest notions and applies them - although I am not totally convinced that a Lutheran sunday school maximizes survival chances!

9

Eugene McKinnon 06.04.06 at 2:03 am

I thought it was required viewing in your household. I haven’t been watching reruns. I grew up with Wayne and Shuster in their closing years as a comedy duo. Johnny Wayne died in 1987 of cancer and Frank Shuster died in 2001. Most of their sketches are so dated that nobody would get the jokes, they liked to spoof television shows like Bonanza and the Equalizer, shows that nobody my age will remember.

Wayne and Shuster were the ones Ed Sullivan always wanted back, so you probably at one point or another seen him. “And now all the way from Canadair, Wayne and Shuster.” Enjoy your really big shew.

Blessings always,

Eugene McKinnon

10

Eugene McKinnon 06.04.06 at 2:23 am

Hey Kim,

I didn’t find the line about Christians coming close to being atheists in the Wayne and Shuster sketch but I found their classic Ed Sullivan sketch on the murder of Julius Caesar entitled Rinse the Blood off My Toga. Just go to this website.

http://www.informalmusic.com/latinsoc/rinse.html

Blessings,

Eugene McKinnon

11

Kim 06.04.06 at 4:16 pm

Hi Aaron.

” . . . an atheist in the ‘God who is’ and a believer in the ‘God who isn’t.”

That’s a clever and not altogether inaccurate way of putting - at least no more inaccurate that the heavy semantic burden you rightly suggest I have laid on the term “atheist”.

Of course “I believe in God . . .” - as in the creeds Christians say. One way of putting the theological point I am provocatively trying to make (Flannery O’Connor said that “for the almost-blind you draw large and startling figures”) is that this creedal God’s existence/being/reality is sui generis, known only by God’s self-revelation in the Crucified and Risen One - and hidden even in this revelation - and semper major than our God-talk cane evr express (which is the compliment negative/apopphatic theology pays to positive theology.)

12

Kim 06.04.06 at 4:38 pm

Hi Aaron,

I stupidly hit the “Submit Comment” Key when I was dealing with some italics (vide supra!). so I’ll start again.

. . . an atheist in the ‘God who is’ and a believer in the ‘God who isn’t’.”

That’s a clever and not altogether inaccurate way of putting it - at least given the heavy semantic load you rightly suggest I have put on the term “atheist” in the first place.

Of course “I believe in God . . . ” - as in the creeds Christians say. One way of putting the theological point I am provocatively trying to make (Flannery O’Connor said that “for the almost-blind you draw large and startling figures”) is that this creedal God’s existence/being/reality is sui generis, known only by God’s self-revelation in the Crucified and Risen One - and hidden even in this revelation - and semper major than our would-be God-talk can ever express (which is the compliment negative/apophatic theology pays to positive theology).

The god I don’t believe is the idol philosophically isolated by Feuerbach (with footnotes from Marx and Freud ) the human reflection/projection (the people’s Prozac, the divine Daddy); and also the onto-theological God attacked by Nietzsche and his heirs (Heidegger, Derrida, Marion) that haunts the Christian tradition itself. So (as D. W. Congdon says, commenting on my post over at Faith and Theology) here’s to “the death of the God of theism (Nietzsche) for the sake of the Crucified God in Jesus Christ.”

13

Patrik 06.05.06 at 5:06 am

I’m not sure why you dismiss Tillich’s concept of God as the Ground of our being or being itself, because tome he is making the same point as you. “It is as much atheism to claim that God exists as to deny that God exists.”

14

Kim 06.05.06 at 10:42 am

Hi Patrik,

Not quite the same point, I think, though it would really take another post to make the appropriate clarifications. In short, however, Tillich is right in what he denies, viz. that God is a being, even the greatest being. It is what Tillich affrims that is theologically problematical, as “Being Itself” bears little resemblance to the trinitarian and crucified God of Christian faith. That God is not a “person” does not entail that God is not “personal” - which is why two of the most acute criticisms lodged against Tillich’s doctrine of God are that it renders both prayer and divine action in history unintelligible.

15

Patrik 06.05.06 at 1:33 pm

Well, yeah, but are these things (prayer and divine action in history) something that should be intelligible? I agree that it difficult to pray to the “ground of our being”, but this is what we have religous symbols for. The problem arises when we elevate a particular religous symbol to level of doctrinal truth. A symbol is only relevant to those that believe in it, and it is an error theologians often commit to say something that we actually do not know anything about.

16

Kim 06.05.06 at 2:57 pm

Well, as a paradigm case, to call God “Father” - is that a “symbol”? For a Tillichian, yes; for a Barthian (or, for that matter, for a follower of Thomas) - and for me - definitely not. God is Father, the eternal Father. Which, of course, does not mean that God is “literally” a father, male gendered, etc. - but “symbol” doesn’t do the work that needs to be done in such fundamental God-talk. However, again, now we head towards another discussion!

Speaking of “symbols” though: the novelist Mary McCarthy, an ex- Catholic, once said that, nevertheless, she still found the symbolism of the eucharist to be useful for her fiction. To which the devout Flannery O’Connor replied, “Well, if it’s a symbol, to hell with it.” Just so, if “Father” is a “symbol” for God, I say to hell with it. :)

17

Patrik 06.05.06 at 4:51 pm

I agree that this may be off-topic but for Tillich a symbol is a very powerful thing. If you say that God is not literally a father, that in what way do you use that if not as a symbol? Tillichs point is that a symbol always “participates” in the reality which i points toward. A symbol is not something that is “not true” it is a function of the language, and we cannot talk about anyhing without language.

18

Kim 06.05.06 at 5:51 pm

Tillich - a good post-Kantian - believes that God is essentially unknowable, and that God-talk consists in metaphorical/symbolic constructions drawn from human experience, in this case, from human fatherhood. I would want to reverse that: God reveals himself as Father, which is not so much a description (let alone a projection) as God’s essential reality, God’s proper name (if you like). In other words, it is not that we extrapolate human fatherhood onto the deity, but just the reverse: only God is really Father, human fathers being but pale paternal reflections. Provocatively put, the divine fatherhood is literal, human fatherhood is metaphorical/symbolic.

19

roodee 06.06.06 at 4:54 am

Would you mind expanding on “If we insist that God “exists”, we must be clear that this is not a statement of fact (let alone the best bet among probabilities) but a confession of faith.”

20

Kim 06.06.06 at 8:15 am

Hi Roodie,

Statements of fact may or may not be they case, e.g. the claim that I am now typing on my PC, or that an old friend has just died. These statements are both contingent (i.e. could be otherwise) and (at least in principle) empirically testable and verifiable. The statement “God is” works with a completely different kind of grammar. The possibility that “God is not” simply does not occur withing the epistemological context of faith (cf. my reference to the truth behind the much maligned “ontological argument” - which Simone Weil rightly insists must only be understood as an agrument from love - viz. that the non-reality of God is inconceivable). That is why to come to faith in God is not to discover a new “fact” but to see all facts in a new light; it is to be grasped and shaken into a new life by the One by whom all facts exist. We bear witness to the reality of this God, but we do not demonstrate his reality as an existent. God is a different kind of reality from PCs and old friends. God is sui generis.

21

roodee 06.07.06 at 9:00 pm

I guess what I’m having difficulty with is that “to come to faith” is, unless I’m missing something, a leap. “Coming to faith”, I think, is partly a conclusion based on certain pieces of data or information. If these categories about “God is” are invalid what reasons do we base this “change of mind (faith)” upon?

22

DH 06.08.06 at 3:47 pm

“God Is” is a statement of fact whether or not I Believe it or not. The discovery of the “new fact” helps us see all facts in a new light. If a person didn’t Believe in God it doesn’t change the fact that God is. True God is beyond existence by the nature of His infinite diminsions but the fact that Jesus died and rose again as fully God is a statement of fact whether or not I believe it in that Jesus says by way of John 1:1 in that Jesus always has been existent and at the same time was physically on earth as Godman and rose physically and is in heaven and is with us as well.

Roodee great question and I like what you are “getting at”. Hopefully this post of mine will help.

23

roodee 06.08.06 at 5:59 pm

“God is” is only a statement of fact if it is the case that God really is. I’m probably not understanding something here, but It seems to me we are very near to Plato’s “true opinion”. It seems we are not moving any closer to what may be called real knowledge from our true opinions about God. It could be that I’m missing the main thrust of the argument. Sorry for following a strange rabbit if I am.

24

Kim 06.08.06 at 6:17 pm

DH,

The reality of God is not the issue; the issue is the kind of this reality; it is misleading - indeed it is idolatrous - to subsume the divine reality under the category of “fact”.

Roodie,

Does faith issue from a conclusion that one has reached independent of faith itself? Surely that’s not the way it works. Surely one comes to know God only - but precisely - in faith - and faith alone (the Reformers’ sola fide). To know God one must love and fear God. (As Anselm put it, “Credo ut intelligam - I believe in order that I may know, not the reverse.) Apart from this love and fear - i.e. faith - one does not apprehend God but something else, something in the world, i.e. some fact.

Karl Barth rightly said that “complete impartiality” towards God is “merely comical”. So you’re right - faith is a leap. Indeed one cannot even be sure that one believes, one can only trust in whom one believes. And this trust itself is a gift of God the Holy Spirit.

25

roodee 06.08.06 at 8:52 pm

It seems to me, as is usually the case, there is a confusion of terms. I think I am understanding faith to be of a certain nature and you are taking it to mean something else. What is faith from your perspective and while you’re at it, how do you know. It sounds to me that much of what you are saying reduce to presuppositions. I am off on this?

I really like “one does not apprehend God but something else, something in the world, i.e. some fact” and understand what you are getting at. However, apprehending the knowledge of gravity does not exclude me from apprehending the object that this fact refers to. Unless you are saying that facts about God cannot refer to the object itself, in this case God. If you are saying that, then I’ll have to think about that a bit more.

There is still a basis in this trust. Trust, I thought, is contigent upon some additional pieces of information regarding the object in which we place trust. If I can’t “get at” this information, then this really isn’t trust that we’re talking about. If this is the case, then what is this? Sounds like the statement, if I understand correctly, should be “..one can only *hope* in whom one believes”. I don’t think we can bend trust that far.

On another note, this construction of faith alone, where does this come from? How do you know this is in fact true? Is it based on this same construction of faith? If so, it seems rather circular. I’m sure you don’t mean something like your knowledge of faith comes from your faith in God.

26

DH 06.08.06 at 9:46 pm

If God refers to Himself in a factual way “I am the Way theTruth and the Life” then it isn’t idolatrous. “Does faith issue from a conclusion that one has reached independent of faith itself?” No but by Faith I believe statements of fact of who God is as stated from God’s Word. If I didn’t have Faith I wouldn’t Believe what the Bible says. Can a person havehead knowledge and Believe the Faithful things? yes but thatdoesn’t change the fact of who God is. I personally don’t believe Faith is a leap. I Believe because I know with all my heart, soul and mind like Peter said “You are the Christ the Son of the Living God” or Thomas “My Lord and my God”. For me to be heart, soul and mind one mustn’t forget the mind part of understanding “God Is”.

“Indeed one cannot even be sure that one believes, one can only trust in whom one believes. And this trust itself is a gift of God the Holy Spirit.”

I am sure without a shadow of a doubt with all heart, soul and mind that God is because of His revelation. To me to say “one cannot even be sure that one believes” shows doubt and a lack of Faith. I know, that I know ,that I know that God is.

27

DH 06.08.06 at 9:51 pm

It is fact and beyond fact at the same time. To deny it as fact is denying it as Truth.

28

Kim 06.08.06 at 10:37 pm

Roodie,

Yes, exactly - God is not a conclusion, God is a presuppsoition, an assumption, the full-stop from which faith begins and couldn’t get behind if it wanted to. God is knowable only as and because God reveals himsef to us and gives himself to us in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth. Jesus is the presupposition - though you might also think of him as the evidence if you read him as the Word incarnate, see him as the human face of God. Jesus is God’s Yes and Amen to humanity - and faith is our grateful, answering Yes and Amen to God’s grace. You will seek in vain for either a rationalitst or an empiricist way out of this virtuous circle of revelation and faith. Zwingli said that beetles know more about human beings than human beings know of God -outside of his self-dsiclosure Christ.

29

Kim 06.08.06 at 11:02 pm

Hi again, Roonie. I cut myself off!

As for “information” about God, well, God (as Augustine said) is a poet who speaks to us in metaphors and parables and miracles which are not demonstrations but invitations to see, indeed to indwell God, but which by their very nature are open to misapprehension precisely because the reponse God is looking for is faith, not sight. Christians sometimes do speak of the “certainty” of faith, really meaning faith “assurance”, but it is a faith without closure. And, yes, the only knowldege of God I have is the knowledge of the fatih God gives me.

Now Paul did say that the word of the cross would be foolish to Greeks (i.e. philosophers)!

30

Kim 06.08.06 at 11:04 pm

Roodee - I have also called you Roodie and Roonie - please forgive my stupid misspellings of you name!

31

Aaron G 06.10.06 at 10:31 am

Kim,

Thanks for drawing things in LARGE LETTERS for us.

In preching, I contend that one must overstate the case to make the point clear. Certainly Jesus did this.

Now I’m going to go poke out an eye…

32

Understanding Islam 07.06.06 at 9:59 pm

Now if you don’t believe in the Existence of God, what’s your believe concerning the purpose of life?

The purpose of creation is a topic that puzzles every human being at some point in his or her lifetime. Everybody at some time or another asks themselves the question “Why do I exist?” or “For what purpose am I here on earth?”

Islam will give you the answer!

Now you might be thinking, “why Islam?” The question “why?” demands a rational answer. However, many people think that it is not possible to give rational answers to ideological commitments (by ideology, we mean a system of thought). They believe that a commitment to any theistic ideology is an irrational act. One cannot deny the fact that many people do commit themselves illogically to various ideologies and continue to hold onto them only because they find themselves to be raised up in particular communities. They accept such ideologies in just the same way as they would accept a traditional form of dress handed down to them through the generations. For example, a person might be deeply committed to a nationalistic ideology simply because it may be the best way to win the support of the masses and thereby gain personal political power.

Let us analyze two commonly found views regarding ideological commitments:

* The first states that a commitment to any ideology which involves some type of deity must necessarily be irrational.

The premise of those who say this is that the fundamental claims of all such ideologies are beyond the comprehension of the human mind. Those who have accepted such a premise have concluded that all types of such ‘belief’ must be based on irrational and imaginary thoughts rather than on reality.

* The opposite view is held by people who seek to justify their ‘belief’ in certain irrational ideas by claiming that reason is limited.

In fact, the followers of this ideology state that people should commit themselves to such ideas by simply having ‘faith’ (such as Christianity). The conclusion of these people is that ultimate reality must be irrational in essence and therefore incomprehensible to the human mind. They go on to say that their ideology must be accepted or ‘believed’ without reason, in order to attain some type of ’salvation’.

This kind of argument is very difficult to accept because as human beings, we may ask: What do we have other than the usage of our minds for acquiring knowledge? If we are told to ‘believe’ in something that is irrational (i.e. beyond all reason), such as a type of being which is both mortal and immortal, we cannot possibly digest such an idea. Therefore it does not seem unnatural for us to demand that our way of thinking and living be based solely upon those concepts which can be verified as being true.

Going back to the first view regarding ideological commitments, we see that this view contends that we cannot and should not believe in that which we cannot comprehend. The emphasis lies on the word comprehend, and so it must be defined. It is true that one cannot have an adequate mental picture of some mathematical and scientific facts. For example, one cannot have an adequate mental or visual picture of the curvature of space, or one of the mathematical concepts of infinity. Nor can we really have an adequate mental picture of the way in which certain animals experience things, such as the way in which bats ’see’ by using ultrasonic waves. However, we know these concepts to be true because of solid evidence and not because of some non-rational ideas. Therefore we can say that we do indeed comprehend them.

Now what about the concept of a singular, all-knowing entity which has created the universe. It is impossible to have any mental or visual picture of such an entity, for evidence tells us that this entity must be unlike anything in the universe because this entity must be independent of space and time. The evidence for the existence of this single intelligence lies in the design of nature itself, which we can freely examine; hence, such an ideology is rational. If one realizes this - through confirmation - then one can proceed to answer the question: Why Islam?

One of the main problems with an atheistic ideology is that it cannot explain intelligence in the processes of the universe. Another problem is that it tends to deprive life of meaning. Furthermore, we know that human beings are naturally inclined to be honest; however, in atheism there is a denial of an ultimate originator and of anything beyond death, which creates a contradiction and leads to an inconsistency in behaviour – on the one hand a person would be inclined to be honest, and on the other to be dishonest ‘to make the most of this world’. [If everyone insisted on 'making the most of this world', society as we know it would not exist. As a case in point, let us suppose that all those who wanted to 'make the most of this world' resorted to thievery. If this happened, no one would be producing the goods (growing food for instance) that the rest of us could steal. Hence it seems that 'making the most of this world' as system of action is doomed to failure. Could it then be a viable system of belief?]

Broadly speaking, with regard to theistic ideologies we have the revealed, the distorted and the man-made. One can easily say that a way of life communicated to humankind by the creator of this universe is preferred to man-made ideologies. If one wants to follow the advice of that which has made the universe and all that it contains - regarding what is beneficial or harmful - then it is better to refer to pristine communication from this originator, than to that communication which has been fabricated or distorted by man.

Those ideologies claiming to be based on revelations can be subjected to a number of tests, the first and most important of which is that of consistency. We must look for two types of consistency: internal and external. Internal consistency means that a statement made in a book must not contradict another statement in the same book. External consistency means that a statement made in a book must not contradict facts as we know, be they psychological, physical, chemical, historical, geographical, biological and so on. Applying these tests, consider the most important truth that all the supposedly revealed ideologies proclaim, that is, the existence and perfect attributes of God. God for all ideologies, that claim to be revealed, is supposed to be all knowing, all merciful, everlasting etc. However, some books imply that God’s knowledge is limited and imperfect by saying that, for example, God was deceived by a human. In contrast, the Quran provides the perfect concept of an all-knowing, singular originator of this universe.

This leads us to the next test - that of authenticity. The question that should be asked is whether the scriptures that we have today are indeed a communication from the originator to humankind. A study of the history of Islam would show that the present Quran is exactly the same as that which was communicated about one thousand four hundred years ago. During its revelation it was committed to memory by a large number of people and also written down.

Yet another test is that of comprehensiveness. A truly comprehensive ideology, revealed to humankind by the designer of the universe, would describe the most beneficial system in all spheres of life including the political, economical, social, medical and environmental spheres.

Lastly, we might look at the test of universality. Clearly, an ideology which is historically or graphically bound is not as good as that which applicable to all human beings, irrespective of the time and place of their origin.

In conclusion, if one uses the criteria of universality, comprehensiveness, authenticity and above all, consistency, one would find the Quran unique and worthy of investigation. It is interesting to note that the Quran itself stresses the above-mentioned approach. For example, in verse 82 of chapter 4, it is said, “Will they not ponder about the Quran? If it had been from other than God, then they would have surely found in it many inconsistencies.”

If you would like to learn about Islam, please visit our blog–> http://thejourney2islam-team.blogspot.com/

33

Richard 07.06.06 at 11:02 pm

Thanks for that comment, though I think you’ve misunderstood the post. All those who post here, and the majority of those who comment, are Christian believers.

34

DH 07.07.06 at 2:13 pm

Kim, I see your point but when one reads God’s Word you can’t come away with anything less than Jesus is Lord unless ones heart is hard. I know many an atheist who have tried to disprove God and Christianity and came away with the fact and Faith Belief that Jesus is Lord. They went away from their gymnastics with not only what you said but also that Jesus is Lord. How I discribe the nature of Belief is that the response to the objective Truth and the known fact can be a head knowledge (giving your mind to Christ) but the response of this combined with the revelation leads to (giving your heart and soul in addition). However, not acknowledging the objective fact andthe known facts of the Truth of Christ can also show a missing piece of the mind (heart and soul given to Christ) over to Christ in that Christ requires our heart, soul and mind for Salvation.

So I agree to a point in that knowledge and objective Truth canbe head knowledge but at the same time Salvation includes the head knowledge with heart and soul revelation of the Truth operating in conjunction and a non-contradictary way to the objective Truth of God and His Word.

35

Daniel Morgan 08.11.06 at 2:15 pm

Kim,

Interesting thoughts on the ontological argument.

If you’re interested, drop in here to argue with amateur theologians. (I’m an atheist too)

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