Hover over Romans 1:20-22 for proof of God's existence, and over Matthew 5:27-28 for Judgment Day’s perfect standard. Then hover over John 3:16-18 for what God did, and over Acts 17:30-31 for what to do.

Monday, May 5, 2008

A Reasonable Atheist

“Congratulations, you have achieved at least one of your aims. As a result of your polemical postings, I have been reading more about the bible in the last few weeks than I have probably ever done in my life. Some of it has been quite fascinating. Don't get too worked up about it. I am still an atheist :). I have been reading quite a lot of documentation about the latest biblical research, though I confess purely from a historical/anthropological point of view. Interesting stuff all the same.”

May I suggest that you also read the Bible itself. It’s good that you are studying documentation, but other resources are the mere shadow of the reality. It would be wonderful if you could especially study the Gospel of John.

There are two ways you can read the Bible. One is with the light off. By that I mean that you read it with a proud heart, looking for mistakes, marking seeming contradictions, believing that you are intellectually superior to what you are reading.

The second way is with the light on. By that I mean with a humble heart, believing that you don’t know everything, and that you could gain knowledge by studying the world’s greatest-selling book of all time.

Read slowly, with a pen in your hand and underline the things said about Jesus of Nazareth--that all things were made by Him, that He was the very source of life in human form, why He came to this earth, etc. Then underline and ponder what He said about Himself--how He was preexistent, how He maintained that He was life itself, the conqueror of death, the sole way to immortality, and how He came specifically to suffer and die for our sins, then rise again. Take special note that He promises to manifest Himself to all who do what He says (see John 14:21). Either that’s true or it’s not.

The implications of such honest research are either frightening or they are unspeakably exhilarating, depending on your perspective.