Monday, August 17, 2009

Christianity vs. Atheism: Some Brief Observations

Christianity is defined by a belief in something -- particularly, a belief in the God of the Bible. Atheism is defined by a non-belief in something -- particularly, a non-belief in the God of the Bible.

Christians choose to be identified by that which they believe to be true. Atheists choose to be identified by that which they believe to be false.

The practice of Christian apologetics is based on defending a belief. The practice of atheist apologetics is based on attacking a belief.

Christianity teaches absolute truth based on the unchanging word of God. Atheism teaches relative truth based on the changing scientific consensus.

Christians look to God's word as their objective moral standard. Atheists have no objective moral standard, so whenever they discuss morality (which cannot be accounted for in their naturalistic worldview) they must steal from Christians.

Christianity offers purpose and meaning in this world and hope beyond. Atheism offers none of the above, yet atheists continue to proselytize.

8 comments:

Jason P. Franklin said...

I've been following your blog for a couple months now. Wanted to finally say "Howdy" and that I liked this particular post. A nice succinct comparison. A life of affirmation vs. a life of negation.

randalscott said...

Just ran across your blog. If I may...

"Atheism is defined by a non-belief in something -- particularly, a non-belief in the God of the Bible."

Yes, but not particularly, I think more like specifically, the Abrahamic God of the Bible. I believe alot of atheists are "not that" atheists. If the Christian God is our default religious option, we would rather not partake. If it were Zoraster who was being propagated as the absolute, our first priority would to reject that deity as well all while educating others in the process.

"...Atheism teaches relative truth based on the changing scientific consensus."

Atheism is NOT a belief system. I repeat: Atheism is not a belief system. Therefore, we have no teachings. We do however like a trial and error process to aid in our rational decision making process. If something isn't working, we take pause, and adjust. Just as most people to do with most things in life.

"...Atheists have no objective moral standard, so whenever they discuss morality (which cannot be accounted for in their naturalistic worldview)

That's a pretty broad assessment. Morality is as relative in non-believers as it is in Christians. (Some Christians think it immoral to wear condoms, yes?)

..."they must steal from Christians."

...who stole from the Jews who stole from the Babylons and Assyrians who stole from who stole from....

Check out the 'Code of Hammurabi.' Your 10 commandments (the ones you use from the Israelites)are not original in the least. Any relevant digging at a library can confirm this. (See "The Great Transformation" by Karen Armstrong)

So you need a law to dictate a moral code that will prohibit you from going out and murdering someone? I don't think that's what you're saying.

To the other response:
"A life of affirmation vs. a life of negation."

Couldn't have said it better. All three Abrahamic faiths over the last 2000 years have been marginalized, by man's greed and power, to nothing but excuses to escape personal responsibility by worrying about perfection and what should be, instead relishing in truth, reality, and the beauty and breadth of life.

Thank you for your time.
randalscott

Lee Shelton IV said...

"I believe alot of atheists are 'not that' atheists. If the Christian God is our default religious option, we would rather not partake. If it were Zoraster who was being propagated as the absolute, our first priority would to reject that deity as well all while educating others in the process."

Does it depend on location? What about where the Christian God isn't the "default religious option"? For example, you don't see atheists flocking to Muslim countries to denounce Allah. Atheists' biggest beef is with the God of the Bible.

"Atheism is NOT a belief system. I repeat: Atheism is not a belief system. Therefore, we have no teachings."

"Atheism is NOT a belief system"? You "have no teachings"? Atheists have formed numerous organizations. They hold seminars and rallies. They stage protests and even take out advertisements to make themselves heard. They file lawsuits to remove God from public discourse. They proselytize. They gather in droves to learn from atheist icons like Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris, and Christopher Hitchens. They ride around with bumper stickers on their cars. Countless books have been published to promote atheism. It is as much of a belief system as any religion.

"Morality is as relative in non-believers as it is in Christians. (Some Christians think it immoral to wear condoms, yes?)"

There are differences in opinion and understanding, but all true Christians look to God's word as the moral standard. Even the debate over birth control is based on the biblical truth that life is sacred and all humans are created in the image of God. We can account for morality because we recognize an ultimate Law-Giver. The atheist cannot account for morality because no such thing can exist in a purely material universe.

"...who stole from the Jews who stole from the Babylons and Assyrians who stole from who stole from.... Check out the 'Code of Hammurabi.' Your 10 commandments (the ones you use from the Israelites) are not original in the least. ... So you need a law to dictate a moral code that will prohibit you from going out and murdering someone? I don't think that's what you're saying.""

This is based on the flawed assumption that the Ten Commandments mark the beginning of God's moral law. They don't. Scripture teaches that the law is written on our hearts (Romans 2:15). We all have the ability to discern the difference between right and wrong. Again, that presupposes an ultimate Law-Giver. Atheists have an evolutionary presupposition which, at best, can only account for a morality that is entirely pragmatic.

Nate said...

"Atheists have formed numerous organizations. They hold seminars and rallies. They stage protests and even take out advertisements to make themselves heard. They file lawsuits to remove God from public discourse. They proselytize. They gather in droves to learn from atheist icons like Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris, and Christopher Hitchens. They ride around with bumper stickers on their cars. Countless books have been published to promote atheism. It is as much of a belief system as any religion."

The same could be said of Vegetarians. Is Vegetarianism a belief system or religion? No I thought not.

Lee Shelton IV said...

Vegetarianism, like atheism, can be a religion if it is the philosophy by which one governs his or her life.

Rebekka said...

I love this post, it says just what I wanted to say. Can I post it on my blog and link the post back to you?

Lee Shelton IV said...

Sure, Rebekka. Thanks for dropping by!

Christie J said...

randalscott- you posted: "Atheism is NOT a belief system. I repeat: Atheism is not a belief system. Therefore, we have no teachings."

Yet just prior to that, you posted: "our first priority would to reject that deity as well all while educating others in the process."

Now, correct me if I'm wrong, but my vocabulary teacher in elementary school taught that the meanings of both, "educating" and "teaching", are the SAME.

So,although your post was very well worded, you contradicted yourself, and proved the original author of this blog as a very-well educated individual on atheism.

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