Correspondence With Unbelief 1: What Atheism Is

 

Dear Thomas, the structure of your comment to my post Conversation With An Atheist prompted me to look at your profile. You sounded like someone trying to be an atheist rather than one. You quoted a template without an apparent understanding of the philosophical subtext. It’s why I decided to correspond with you. I am convinced you don’t know the roots of atheism, what it’s really all about. Not many people do. On the surface it sounds like unbelief in the existence of God, or disbelief in the “idea of God,” or whatever spin of variance atheists like to put on such definitions. In truth however it’s bigger than that. “Atheism” is in fact the code name for a propaganda program of a war which really has nothing to do with humans. The Bible tells us (please indulge me) that there was a revolutionary war in Heaven, an insurrection led by an infamous personage called Lucifer. (Revelation 12:7-9) He’s known by other aliases – the Great Dragon, Ancient Serpent, Devil, Satan. Well, Satan lost the battle and he was exiled from Heaven. He thereafter continued the war by other means and by proxy. So it’s not your war, it’s an angelic conflict. And it’s a conflict whose provenance you have no knowledge of, one from which you stand to gain nothing except lose your soul. Why should you give up your life for Satan’s political ambition? It’s all about Satan’s political ambition not some intellectual quarrying of the subject of existence or moral responsibility of God. You’ve got to ask yourself, if God doesn’t exist why the devotion of so much energy and resources to the incessant attempt at damaging his character, credibility and reputation among humans? Doesn’t that qualify as much ado about nothing? Don’t let Satan recruit you into fighting his battle. He’s not going to reward you. He has a very bad reputation when it comes to loyalty. God gave him power, incredible wealth, fame, made him a celebrity and yet he stabbed God in the back, plotted against God. (Ezekiel 28:11-19) Satan has no moral lens whatsoever. After he’s used you to wage his PR war he’s going to dump you. If Satan can stab God in the back what’s the fate of a mere mortal. Of course Satan will tell you this is all a fable and a lie. He’ll even tell you he does not exist. But that is all counterintelligence, don’t be fooled. His greatest sleight of hand is convincing humans he does not exist.

How does Satan recruit humans into this PR program? He targets those who have one grouse or the other against God – sometimes people with an unanswered prayer issue over something emotionally deep. And sometimes he goes after those whose parents though well meaning were too strict in Christian upbringing. There’s a reason God says parents shouldn’t provoke their children to anger: “Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger – do not exasperate them to the point of resentment with demands that are trivial or unreasonable or humiliating or abusive.” (Ephesians 6:4 AMP) And sometimes it’s through institutional indoctrination, like in the defunct Soviet Union, China or North Korea. Those are political programs. At a personal level the most common approach however is appeal to man’s vanity. Satan presents virus-infected knowledge as truth, giving people the impression they’ve come into possession of something of unique value. It’s a common tactic. He used it on Gnostics. It makes people feel special, makes them feel wiser than the rest of humans. It’s the stunt he pulled on Eve. He gave Eve the impression he was giving her insider info on God’s political motivation – that God was trying to prevent human evolution and ascendance of the human race. “God knows that the moment you eat from that tree, you’ll see what’s really going on. You’ll just be like God, knowing everything, ranging all the way from good to evil.” (Genesis 3:4-5) Straightaway you see the moral judgment of God prevalent among atheists.

It’s quite natural at a certain age to have questions about the existential. The nature of reality provokes enquiry of the mind. It’s why we embark on journeys to space. We’re blind to 99.99% of the reality out there so we want to find out. It’s why we talk about dark energy and dark matter. These are invisible stuff. The invisible has always provoked curiosity in man and so God being invisible will naturally provoke questions of the mind. And there are many questions of the mind – questions about the authenticity of the cosmology of Genesis, the purpose of our lives, the origin of life, the evolution of mankind, the origin of God, the veracity of the Bible… Questions about a triune God, how the world will end, the origin of the Bible, perception of transcendence… These are very legitimate questions. There’s nothing wrong with asking questions about faith. It’s cowardice not to ask those questions. Those who live in fear of “losing their faith” are the ones who avoid such questions, but that’s not Bible tradition. Daniel pondered a lot of stuff. (Daniel 10:12) Moses was inquisitive about the nature of God. (Exodus 33:18) God doesn’t have a problem with us asking questions, pondering stuff. The Holy Spirit is an intellectual, or he wouldn’t have been able to inspire those highfalutin letters of Paul. (Paul started an argument in Romans 1 and concluded it in Romans 8:1!) It was the Holy Spirit who inspired that critical philosophical advancement on the concept of the Logos. “In the beginning was the Word (Logos)” is a major philosophical discourse. (John 1:1) The concept of the Logos was originally propounded by an eccentric philosopher, Heraclitus, but John took it to another dimension. So the Holy Spirit understands philosophy. God is an intellectual. He enjoys intellectual jousts. He said, “Come. Sit down. Let’s argue this out” in respect of an arcane legal issue called “redemption.” (Isaiah 1:18) You CAN have an intellectual argument with God.

And God is not someone you can’t approach. In fact he likes bold, confident people. (Hebrews 4:16 AMP) The manner Moses spoke to God was most unprecedented: “If your presence doesn’t take the lead here, call this trip off now. How else will it be known that you’re with me in this, with me and your people? Are you travelling with us or not? How else will we know we’re special, I and your people among all the people on this planet Earth?” (Exodus 33:15-16 MSG) This is not the impression of God we have! Yet Jonah, Abraham, and even Cain the murderer argued with God over issues. Cain asked for immunity for murder! You can make your case with God. But there’s a caveat. That caveat is unfortunately the paradox of the atheist. “Anyone who wants to approach God must believe both that he exists and that he cares enough to respond to those who seek him.” (Hebrews 11:6) That’s a self-evident truth. You can’t approach a nonexistent being! In denying the existence of God therefore the atheist cuts himself off from an invaluable source of intelligence about the other half of reality – the half we can’t see. There are things that can only be apprehended by faith. Faith according to the Bible is a knowledge technology. Hebrews 11:1 tells us, “By faith we know…”

But how do we know individually whether God exists? This is Paul’s answer: Take a long and thoughtful look at creation – “But the basic reality of God is plain enough. Open your eyes and there it is! By taking a long and thoughtful look at what God has created, people have always been able to see what their eyes as such can’t see: eternal power, for instance, and the mystery of his divine being. So nobody has a good excuse.” (Romans 1:20 MSG)

But lest you think this atheism stuff is something God is cool with being God of love, Paul tells us, “God’s angry displeasure erupts as acts of human mistrust and wrongdoing and lying accumulate, as people try to put a shroud over truth.” (Romans 1:18 MSG) And then he continues in that acerbic tone: “What happened was this: People knew God perfectly well, but when they didn’t treat him as God, refusing to worship him, they trivialized themselves into silliness and confusion so that there was neither sense nor direction in their lives. They pretended to know it all, but were illiterate regarding life… So God said in effect, “If that’s what you want, that’s what you get.” It wasn’t long before they were living in a pigpen, smeared with filth, filthy inside and out… They know perfectly well they’re spitting in God’s face. And they don’t care – worse, they hand out prizes to those who do worst things best!” (Romans 1:19-27 MSG) That’s pretty strong! In fact Paul called atheists “haters of God.” (Romans 1: 30) You need to read the full text. I’ve abridged because of length. But bottom line, atheism is not an intellectual badge of honour.

The pseudo-intellectualism of atheism may sound alluring but the Bible identifies two types of wisdom. There’s “wisdom from above” and “superficial” wisdom. Apostle James says superficial wisdom is “secular, unspiritual, even demonic.” (James 3:15 AMP) He says “twisting the truth to make yourselves sound wise isn’t wisdom – it’s animal cunning, devilish conniving.” (MSG) If you really want to be perceived as wise and intelligent embrace the wisdom from above not base wisdom. And the fear of God is the beginning of that wisdom. We all have questions. But in seeking understanding we must not align ourselves with a rebel’s cause. If you want to engage intelligently on these and other issues you can email me at talk2me@lekealder.com.

But if you’ll like to give your life to Christ, please pray this prayer: Father I acknowledge that I am a sinner, that Jesus died for me, that you raised him from the dead. Father please forgive me. I accept Jesus today as my Lord and my Saviour. Amen.

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© #Illuminare Leke Alder 2017