Most people know atheists and sceptics who deny that there is a God. They are family members, friends, colleagues and acquaintances. They are usually civilised, well mannered, educated, law abiding, clever and very normal people. Why does the Bible then say that people who deny that God exists are fools? The fool says in his heart, there is no God.’ 1 Is the Bible mistaken? It doesn’t sound right. Isn’t a fool an idiot, or an ignorant, illiterate person?
Modern atheists do not answer to that picture. The term ‘fool’ also does not apply to most atheists in Proverbs 10:23a, A fool finds pleasure in evil conduct. So why does the Bible use the word ‘fool’ when it describes atheists? It is because the Biblical meaning differs from the modern meaning. For us ‘fool’ has become a derogatory term. In Bible language it means a wrong way of thinking. Is the Bible correct when it defines atheists and sceptics as wrong thinkers?
We can look at the thinking of atheists like this:
- For most atheists evolution ‘proves’ that there was no Creator. The God of the Bible is very specifically the Creator. If He was not necessary for the creation, then obviously He does not exist.
- Evolution depends on Darwin’s tree of life. The tree is supposed to demonstrate that all of life like plants, animals, birds, et cetera are inter-connected. They all stem from the same original, first living organism.
- Darwin’s tree of life depends on a seed to grow. A tree crucially needs a ‘seed’ to begin to grow. That means evolution can only be true if the first living organism (the seed) appeared naturally, without the Creator, on earth.
- The seed has not yet been found, but evolution is supposed to be a fact. Despite all the many researchers and investigators who work in laboratories to prove how life began, the ‘seed’ has not yet been found.
- The tree of life is imaginary. It could or did not grow, because there was no ‘seed.’ It is an artificial construct, that is not supported by facts.
- You need faith in Darwin to accept that evolution happened. There are no concrete, scientific facts yet. Atheists who rely on evolution to ‘prove’ there is no Creator God, have to believe it without evidence.
That explains why God regards atheists as people who cannot think logically and rationally. Their biggest argument for the non-existence of God is non-existent.
So, how are we to react towards them, and to think about them? We don’t advocate the use of the term ‘fool.’ Atheists come in different shades. Some hate God with a passion, others just don’t like God, others can’t be bothered by God at all. We have no commands in the Bible to revile or judge them. Judgement belongs to God, not to us. God expects us to treat them with respect, because they might just change their thinking when they hear rational, logical truth and experience the civility of God believers.
1. Psalm 14:3