Is Richard Dawkins demonised?

What does ‘demonised’ mean? Jesus preached in the synagogue at Capernaum to Jews on an ordinary Sabbath day.  Without provocation “a man …who was possessed by an evil spirit cried out, ‘What do you want with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are – the Holy One of God!’” 1

Jesus promptly commanded the evil spirit to come out of him (in our modern day, it is not politically correct to use the word ‘demonised,’ but rather to say a person is influenced by an unholy spirit, in contrast to the Holy Spirit who influences God’s followers.)

We detect the presence of an evil spirit if someone derides the Bible, God, Jesus and His followers. Is that why Richard Dawkins fights tirelessly against the invisible Creator? He claims that the God of the Bible is just as mythical as Zeus. Yet he doesn’t take the time to try to eliminate Zeus. He only wants to rid society of the (presently still invisible) God of the Bible.

Why does he fight against someone he cannot see? It can only be an unholy spirit (representing God’s enemy, the devil) who instigates him to devote his life railing against God.  The devil knows very well that God is alive and well, and he influences people to hate Him.

What do we learn from Richard Dawkins’ war against Scripture? Nobody wars against an invisible person unless He is real. So when you listen to atheists or active God haters (incidentally neither God nor His followers pose a danger to society), remember that they talk out of the mouth of the devil, who is no lover of truth.

Don’t just believe what they say.  The devil loves to peddle lies about the Bible and God.

References

1. Mark 1:21-24

Atheism has an escape route

Some atheists complain that it is unfair of God to condemn unbelievers Israelitesto hell. In the Bible there is an example of this type of illogical reasoning.

In Numbers 20:2 we read, “Now there was no water for the community, and the people gathered in opposition to Moses and Aaron. They quarrelled with Moses and said, ‘If only we had died when our brothers fell dead before the Lord! Why did you bring the Lord’s community into this desert, that we and our livestock should die here? Why did you bring us up out of Egypt to this terrible place? It has no grain or figs, grapevines or pomegranates. And there is no water to drink.'”

They conveniently forgot that they cried out about the slavery.1 Worse, when God wanted to take them into the promised land of milk and honey, they refused to believe God could do it. By their own actions they ‘inherited’ the 40 years of wilderness wanderings. They complained, but forgot that they caused it.

Atheists do the same. Let’s look at it. A requirement for the eternal Kingdom of Peace is obedience to the King. Man cannot obey, but by God’s grace and mercy, He sent His Son Jesus, who paid the penalty of death to nullify God’s decree of, ‘The wages of sin is death.’  One can escape the penalty (hell), if one accepts by faith that Jesus paid it. 2

Jesus does not come with a price tag. Faith in Him is free for anyone who will believe. So there is no excuse not to become part of God’s eternal Kingdom. There is no excuse for anyone who willingly chooses to reject God’s gracious free offer. God cannot be blamed for people’s decisions to reject citizenship in God’s country.

Still, why hell for unbelievers (rebels who refuse to acknowledge God)? It is because there are only two eternal destinations and no other alternatives. One is the new heavens and earth where God is the Ruler. The other is the lake of burning sulphur, where the devil is the ruler.  God’s people will be with Him on the new heavens and earth. The only alternative is with the devil in hell, ‘…into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels.’ 3

Did the Israelites have reason to gripe about what happened? No! They decided to disbelieve God. Do atheists and other people have reason to accuse God of being unfair? No, they decided with their own free will that they are not interested in God and His plan for man.

Conclusion: Griping and whining about the ‘Cosmic Tyrant’ is useless, since He has provided an escape route from hell. The example of the Israelites is a wonderful lesson: don’t grumble if something is your own doing. Atheists could do well to learn from that Biblical example.

References

1. Exodus 3:7; 4:31; 12:33-36

2. Colossians 1:22-23a

3. Matthew 25:41

Can atheists be moral?

Can atheists be moral without the Bible? Of course they can!  Atheists, Moralsskeptics, Christians, Muslims and Communists can live moral lives. Nobody denies, or should deny, it. However, there is a difference between a moral lifestyle (independent of God) and a God-dependent lifestyle. The Bible is not about moral living per se, but about becoming part of God’s Kingdom, part of the family of God.

God’s Kingdom

In the Kingdom of God, there is only one Ruler (God). Obedience, which means doing what God wants, is the recipe for a successful eternal Kingdom. Those who have learned to love and obey the Lord God Almighty, is part of God’s Kingdom. This means that they adhere to a lifestyle as prescribed in the Bible. What the world calls a ‘moral lifestyle,’ the Bible calls ‘holiness,’ a life pleasing to the Lord.

The ‘moral’ unbeliever lives his good life mostly by self discipline. He does not want God in his life.  Contrary to that, the believer understands that God is the inspiration that makes it possible to live up to His standards. Nobody on earth can do what the Bible commands without God’s help. Let us look at an example in Scripture, ‘… as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience….’ 1   It is impossible to do this 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. God knows it and He proved it in the Old Testament with the failure of the Israelites to keep the Covenant. Somewhere, somehow, with the best intentions, we slip, break God’s rule, and that’s it. Yet ‘…without holiness no one will see the Lord.’ 2

Logically God wants ‘all people to be saved and come to a knowledge of the truth,’ 3 so He provided His brilliant solution, Jesus. Jesus makes it possible for us to be in a relationship with God, and to have the Holy Spirit inside us. The Holy Spirit is our Personal Coach who teaches us for example to live according to the standards that we referred to above, ‘clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.

To summarise:

  • The ‘moral’ man does it all by his own strength, with his own designed moral standard, which varies among people.
  • The believer in God has the power of the Holy Spirit who helps him to keep God’s unchangeable standards of living.
  • The moral lifestyle is commendable, but it has a limited value. When such a person dies, the morals die also.
  • Contrary to that, the Holy Spirit inspired lifestyle does not stop at death. It carries over to the eternal reign of God.

Conclusion

The lifestyle of the moral man is to be commended. It has value and benefits in this life. Nobody denies that.

Contrary to that, the person who lives a holy lifestyle has benefits not only in this life, but also in the life to come.

The one lasting difference is that only the Holy Spirit filled ‘holy’ person will be in God’s presence eternally.

References

  1. Colossians 3:12
  2. Hebrews 12:14b
  3. 1 Timothy 2:4
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