How bad are Christians?

We want to discuss a part of a comment by an atheist, namely,

  1. Atheists do tend to take a disliking to people who hold the idea of a god over them as a badge of superiority.
  2. The arrogance of believers cannot be backed up by reason but it’s affects effect all people in very real and measurable ways. 
  3. I worry about what the believers in Christ do because they belittle humanity and enslave and repress for no other reason than their own belief in a myth.1

How much are general statements worth?   

There is a saying, ‘So many heads, so many opinions,’ which is very true.  Therefore statements should be backed by proper references, not Mickey Mouse allusions.  If Christianity is so detrimental to society, what about the book by Rodney Stark, How the West was Won? 2  It discusses the influence of Christianity in Europe and how science developed as a result of it.  General statements are just that.  Why should we take notice of them?  They are just personal opinions like, the moon is going to turn blue in 2018 and Superman will do many miracles there.

1. God as a badge of superiority  

  • It is not Biblical to think you are superior when you believe in God.  Jesus is our example, ‘Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus: Who…did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made Himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant…. He humbled Himself and became obedient to death….’ 3  In addition, ’…as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourself with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.’ 4
  • There are people who profess faith in Jesus, but their actions speak louder that their words.  Compare it to apples.  Among good apples on a tree, there are often some bad ones.  Are all apples therefore worthless?  O course not!  Similarly, if an unbeliever denounces all believers in Christ, he implies that he is omniscient and knows what all followers of Jesus do.
  • The lifestyles of many people who call themselves ‘Christians’ have no resemblance to what the Bible teaches.  Churches as well as the members of their congregations differ, ‘For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine.  Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear.  They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths.’ 5 
  • The mark of a follower of Jesus is the Holy Spirit, ‘…if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Christ.’ 6   The Holy Spirit helps a person to obey the teachings of the Lord God Almighty.

2. ‘The arrogance of believers …affects …all people in very real and measurable ways.’  

  • We would like more tangible evidence of how badly followers of Christ affect people.  If ever there is an unfounded statement that is completely vacuous and devoid of truth, it is this one.  Maybe the critic should give evidence of where followers of Jesus kill people, burn houses, commit atrocities and disrupt governments to support his statement.
  • The Bible tells followers of Christ that, ‘Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities….’ 7  and to ‘Remind the people to be subject to rulers and authorities….’ 8
  • Anyone who is a danger to society and claims to be a ‘Christian,’ does not follow Christ’s example of obedience.  Jesus lived under Roman domination, but never organized or took part in a demonstration, riot or revolt against them.
  • It is true that, filled with the Holy Spirit, the followers of Jesus are, or should be, eager to spread the message of the Kingdom.  This brings them in sharp contrast with the world which generally prefers to lead people away from the Bible and its message.  However, followers of Jesus have no right to impose their values on those outside the Kingdom of God. 9

3. ‘Christians belittle humanity and enslave and repress….’

  • This is possibly because the real followers of Jesus believe in marriage between a man and a woman.  They frown upon adultery and immorality.  They regard the killing of babies in the mother’s womb as a sin.  Often they don’t accept that Charles Darwin’s version of evolution is remotely true.  To believe in only one holy God is not politically correct.
  • The ‘enslaving’ metaphor is quite appealing.  The people of Jesus love to be His slaves, because He enables them to live holy lives on earth, ‘Dear friends, I urge you, as aliens and strangers in the world, to abstain from sinful desires, which war against your soul.  Live such good lives among pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day He visits us.’ 10

Conclusion

Hatred towards followers of Jesus is nothing new.  Jesus warned about it, ‘If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me [Jesus] first.’ 11  That is the motive behind the attacks against Christians.

References

  1. Simon Hyde, July 7, 2017 on Ken Ham and the ark project
  2. Rodney Stark, How the West was Won, ISI Books, Wilmington, Delaware, 2014
  3. Philippians 2:5-8
  4. Colossians 3:12
  5. 2 Timothy 4:3-4
  6. Romans 8:9
  7. Romans 13:1
  8. Titus 3:1
  9. 1 Corinthians 5:12-13
  10. 1 Peter 2:11-12
  11. John 15:18

God’s Word is still reliable and trustworthy.

They love to tell us that the God of the Bible is as much of a myth as Zeus, Superman and Mickey Mouse.  Do those characters have an ancient history book like the Bible that describes their acts over more than a thousand years?  Take for example that,

  • God created man and animals, but not in the same way.  When He created animals, “…God said, ‘Let the land produce living creatures according to their kinds….'” 1
  • When God created man, ‘…the Lord God formed man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life.’ 2
  • The difference is obvious.  It is only into man that He breathed the breath of life.  So man was made completely different from animals.  The breath of God gave man a spirit and he became a living soul (mind, emotion and will).

The mind

  • Do animals have a mind?  Not at all.  Does the chimp have one, since they are supposedly 99% identical to humans in their genetic make-up?  Even children can see the difference as they marvel at why chimps don’t have to go to school, cannot draw pictures, write stories, or create technological marvels.
  • The Bible describes an important function of the soul, ‘Love the Lord with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ 3  Animals don’t do that, since they have no sense of Almighty God who is to be loved and cherished.

Is our descent from ape-like ancestors a fact? 

  • If there was any evidence that we evolved from ape-like ancestors, we would not have a mind.  Evolution is a material process, so it cannot ‘produce’ a spiritual, invisible, but real thing like the mind.  The ‘evolution’ of the mind, an immaterial ‘thing,’ cannot happen according to the idea of evolution.
  • How a mind can evolve remains a mystery to evolutionists, unless they want to deny that people have minds.  They are welcome to do that, but the dilemma is that a person needs a mind to decide people do not have minds.
  • The evolution of man remains a mystery, as all aspects of evolution do.
  • An interesting article for the BBC is titled – We still have not found the missing link between us and apes.4   Logically if the link hasn’t been found, then the evolution of man from ape-like creatures is a myth.

Conclusion

If God is like Superman, Mickey and Zeus, is there evidence that they are Spirit and Creator like God?

  • The Bible tells us, ‘God is spirit, and His worshippers must worship in spirit and in truth.’ 5   
  • God’s Word is reliable and trustworthy when it explains how special God created people, ‘Let us make man in our own image, in our likeness.…’ 6

References

  1. Genesis 1:24
  2. Genesis 2:7
  3. Mark 12:30
  4. The Human-Ape Missing Link, Evolution News/@DiscoveryCSC, July 18, 2017
  5. John 4:24
  6. Genesis 1:26

Another proof of the accuracy of the Bible

David Klinghoffer of Evolution News and Science Today wrote an article about the discovery of human remains of ancient Canaanites.  A study on their DNA revealed a startling overlap with the modern Lebanese.  The media reported that scientific research disproves the Bible.  The ancient Canaanites were not wiped out as the Bible suggests.

The reporters didn’t look into the Bible for themselves.

The Old Testament makes it clear that the Canaanites never disappeared.  For example, in Judges 3:5-6, after the conquest of Canaan and the death of Joshua, ‘The Israelites lived among the Canaanites….  They took their daughters in marriage and gave their own daughters to their sons, and served their gods.’

The media reports were as follows:

Study disproves the Bible’s suggestion that the ancient Canaanites were wiped out” (The Telegraph)

•“Bible says Canaanites were wiped out by Israelites but scientists just found their descendants living in Lebanon” (The Independent)

•“Bronze Age DNA disproves the Bible’s claim that the Canaanites were wiped out: Study says their genes live on in modern-day Lebanese people” (Daily Mail)

•“Scientists Find Evidence That Ancient Canaanites Survive Today: Was The Bible Wrong?” (Tech Times)

•“New DNA study casts doubt on Bible claim” (Mother Nature Network)

•“The Bible was WRONG: Civilisation God ordered to be KILLED still live and kicking” (Express)

•“Genetic evidence suggests the Canaanites weren’t destroyed after all” (Ars Technica)

•“Canaanites Weren’t Annihilated by Ancient Israelites After All” (Newser)

•“Study disproves the Bible’s claim that the ancient Canaanites were wiped out” (Click Lancashire)

•“Canaanites survived Biblical ‘slaughter’, ancient DNA shows”(ABC Online)

•“DNA vs the Bible: Israelites did not wipe out the Canaanites” (Cosmos)

•“The Bible got it wrong: Ancient Canaanites survived and their DNA lives in modern-day Lebanese” (Pulse Headlines)

Conclusion

These reports are another proof of the media’s bias against the Bible.  Yet this DNA study once again proves the absolute accuracy of the Word of God.

References

David Klinghoffer, For Culturally Illiterate Science Reporters, Canaanite DNA Yields Occasion to Slap Bible Around, Evolution News and Science Today, July 29, 2017