Posts Tagged ‘atheist’


Darkness At Noon: The Commission of a Post-Compliant Church

As the late Allan Bloom noted, a mind resolutely determined to be absolutely open is
often, in actuality, quite closed. The closing of the postmodern mind will present a
challenge for the church in this post-Christian age. Swirling worldviews and a
reflexive relativism come together to form a mentality often closed to all substantive truth
claims. Gathering clouds of darkness and the eclipse of truth present the believing church
with a great challenge – will we surrender in a spirit of cultural compliance?
We must recognize that the church has been compliant for far too long, and if we are
effectively to challenge the prevailing worldview of postmodern culture, the church must
become a post-compliant people. What will it take for Christians in this generation to be
awakened out of complacency and compliance? If we are complacent in this culture, if we are
compliant in the face of its demands and expectations, then there will be no preaching of the
gospel. There will be no authentic church. There will be no authentic Christian witness. We
will withdraw into our Christian cave, and we will cower there. We will not witness, we will
not work–we will simply retreat.

A recent debate between Robert Audi and Nicholas Wolterstorff is very revealing. In a book
entitled Religion in the Public Square, Robert Audi takes the secular argument–which is the
prevalent position in the academy–and argues that Christians have no right to make
Christian arguments in the public square. It is fine for Christians to make arguments, he says;
they just cannot show up as Christians. Following in the work of the philosopher John Rawls,
Audi goes so far as to say that when we enter the public square, we must bring with us a
purely secular rationale. In other words, any argument we make must be essentially and
purely secular, and such arguments are to be motivated by secular concerns alone. They
cannot even be spiritually motivated.

Think about what this means on the issue of homosexuality and homosexual marriage, to
take just one example. I believe historians will one day point to this issue as the catalyst for a
great and lamentable cultural revolution in America. The world will be categorically different
the moment homosexual marriage is normalized in this country. Then we will find out how
many Christians there are. We will find out how many churches there are. Who is going to
recognize these same-sex unions? Who is going to solemnize these same-sex unions? Not the
faithful church of the Lord Jesus Christ! Any church that would normalize and celebrate
what Scripture condemns has set itself in direct opposition to revelation, reason, and the
witness of the martyrs. Those who gave their lives for the sake of the Gospel did not do so in a
spirit of cultural compliance.

Think for a moment about this issue of same-sex marriage in the context of Audi’s secular
rationale. I was in Washington recently and heard a presentation in which a very wellinformed
person–one of the nation’s leading researchers on the issues of the day, said,
“Look, we have to understand that we are not going to be able to bring God into the same-sex
marriage debate. We are not going to be able to use spiritual and biblical arguments, so you
Christian people are just going to have to understand that.” I was up next to speak, so I said in
response, “Here is everything I know about marriage apart from God – nothing of binding
significance. Now that that is out of the way, I can tell you that everything I know about
marriage, everything I know about sex, everything I know about gender, everything I know
about homosexuality, I know from the Word of God. That is all I know. That is all I can know,
and I am not going to not talk about it. And if we lose this battle while preaching the
Scriptures, then brothers and sisters, we lose gloriously!”

There are many who will say that what must be pressed in this debate over same-sex
marriage are the deleterious social effects of undermining marriage – and leave all
theologically-based arguments out of the picture. That argument, however, is not only
wrong in principle, it is a pragmatic failure. We will never get anywhere with that, because
the people driving the movement for normalizing homosexuality really aren’t primarily
concerned about those issues. A culture that will compromise itself into accepting
homosexual marriage will never really be convinced by such arguments. In the final analysis,
all we have is the authority of the Word of God. We Christians are the world’s most eccentric
people in a postmodern age. We are committed to a faith that is structured by a book that is
two thousand years old. Beyond eccentric, we are increasingly seen as dangerous. A people
who live by the light of an ancient book – and who dare to call it the very Word of God – will
look exceedingly dangerous to the prevailing worldviews of this age.

The entire biblical truth claim is under assault in today’s culture. We see the tightening grip
in the tenacity of all this onslaught. We see a culture that increasingly loves darkness rather
than the light. We can see the logic of the culture, and we can see that the church has been
compliant too long. Thus, when we turn to Hebrews chapter 12, we are confronted with an
exhortation that instructs is that the reality must be different for us. The prophet Joel warned
of that apocalyptic day of judgment that is coming–a day when the sun will turn to darkness
and the moon will be turned to blood. In Hebrews 12, we are confronted with another
warning of judgment–this time addressed to the church of the Lord Jesus Christ. The writer
of Hebrews writes of two mountains, Mount Sinai and Mount Zion. One represents the
covenant of old, and the other represents the New Covenant in Christ. Sinai represents
thunder and shaking and fear; Zion represents the festive joy of the people of God in the
work of Christ, in the Kingdom of the Redeemer.

In this passage, we are also told of a shaking that is about to come. In Hebrews 12:26, the
author quotes from the prophet Haggai in chapter 2, verses 6-7: “For thus says the Lord of
hosts: ‘Yet once more, in a little while, I will shake the heavens and the earth and the sea and
the dry land. And I will shake all nations, so that the treasures of all nations shall come in,
and I will fill this house with glory, says the Lord of hosts.’” Then the writer of Hebrews picks
up by saying. “This phrase, ‘Yet once more,’ indicates the removal of things that are shaken–
that is, things that have been made–in order that the things that cannot be shaken may
remain.” (Hebrews 12:27)

We are now in a time of shaking, and there is more shaking yet to come. As we read the book
of Hebrews, this too is pointing towards an eschatological shaking and sifting. But just as in
Joel, there is both an eschatological and a present application. There is a shaking now
happening in this generation, and this shaking will be followed by more and more violent
shaking yet. We are about to see what remains and what falls. In this time of shifting and
sifting and shaking, we are going to be tested, and we are going to find out what we are made

Look at Hebrews 12:28: “Therefore let us be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be
shaken, and thus let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe, for our God
is a consuming fire.” Let us be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken. Yes,
there is a whole lot of shaking going on! But there is one kingdom that cannot be shaken,
and that is the kingdom of our Lord Jesus Christ.

What does that kingdom look like? It is certainly a kingdom of victory, but it is sometimes a
victory that doesn’t look to observers like victory. Look at Hebrews 11:32: “And what more
shall I say? For time would fail me to tell of Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, of David and
Samuel and the prophets–who through faith conquered kingdoms, enforced justice,
obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, quenched the power of fire, escaped the
edge of the sword, were made strong out of weakness, became mighty in war, put foreign
armies to flight. Women received back their dead by resurrection. Some were tortured,
refusing to accept release, so that they might rise again to a better life. Others suffered
mocking and flogging, and even chains and imprisonment. They were stoned, they were
sawn in two, they were killed with the sword. They went about in skins of sheep and goats,
destitute, afflicted, mistreated–of whom the world was not worthy–wandering about in
deserts and mountains, and in dens and caves of the earth.” (Hebrews 11:32-38)

I think it is fair to say that to the casual, outside observer, this picture does not look much like
victory. But in the eyes of faith, it doesn’t get any more victorious than what this passage
declares. We don’t get to choose our times. We don’t get to choose our challenges. We didn’t
choose to live in a post-Christian age. We didn’t choose to confront the postmodern mind,
but this is where we are, and it is time that we become a post-compliant church. While all is
shaking and shaken around us, the one thing that cannot be shaken is the kingdom of our
Lord Jesus Christ, and this kingdom is visible in His church.

In a post-Christian age, confronted with the challenge of the postmodern mind, the Church
of the Lord Jesus Christ is called to be a post-compliant people. Anything less is just another
form of spiritual surrender.

~ by Dr. R. Albert Mohler

Dr. R. Albert Mohler Jr. serves as president of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary – the flagship school of the Southern Baptist Convention and one of the largest seminaries in the world.


Darkness At Noon: The Closing of the Postmodern Mind

The prophet Joel spoke of a day when the sun would be turned to darkness, and the
moon to blood. This picture–besides giving us a glimpse of that terrible, coming
Day of the Lord in judgment–is also a graphic picture of our own times. Even today,
in the gathering clouds of our culture, we see darkness at noon.

One of the central realities of this darkness is the dawning of a post-Christian culture – and a
central reality of our emerging culture is the closing of the postmodern mind. Something is
happening to the worldview, the mentality, and the consciousness of this age. If we listen
closely, we can hear something like the closing of a steel door — a solemn, cataclysmic
slamming of a door. We have been watching the postmodern mind in its development, and it
is now well developed. Not only do we see the themes of postmodernity taking hold of the
larger culture, but we understand the challenge this pattern of thinking poses to Christian
truth and Christian truth-telling. Tolerance is perverted into a radical secularism that is
anything but tolerant. There is little openness to truth, and growing hostility to truth claims.
Indeed, the postmodern mind has a fanatical, if selective, dedication to moral relativism, and
an understanding that truth has no objective or absolute basis whatsoever.

The late French philosopher Jacques Derrida shaped the postmodern mind by arguing that
the author of a text is effectively dead in terms of establishing the text’s meaning. One of the
fathers of literary deconstructionism, his concept of “the death of the author” exerts a
powerful influence on the culture at large. Derrida’s basically nihilistic philosophy suggested
that texts mean nothing in themselves. In other words, it is the reader who comes to the text
with meaning and determines what will be found within the text. The author is dead, Derrida
proclaimed, and can no longer dictate by his totalitarian authority what the text means.
Even before Derrida’s death, new debates about deconstructionism arose in the academy.
More significantly, these nihilistic philosophies have already filtered down into popular
culture. Even now, for example, many of our judges are practicing deconstructionists, seeing
the law not as what it was or what it was intended to be, but rather as a tool they can use for
their own agenda of social engineering. In the elite institutions of American academia,
deconstructionism is the order of the day. The text means what the professor says it means,
and it eventually means whatever each student would have it to mean. The reader reigns

Unfortunately, deconstructionism has also found its way into many pulpits, sometimes in a
hard, ideological form, but more often in a soft and seductive form. In the hard form of
undiluted liberalism, it is simply the idea that this text, the Bible, may be a privileged text, but
the authors are dead. Thus, it is now up to us to decide what it should mean, so we can turn
the text on its head. And we can do so in the name of liberation, and freedom from
oppression. We are no longer bound to the oppressive truth of the text because we can now
twist the text to mean something it has never been understood to mean in the past – even the
opposite of what the words and grammatical structure would seem to mean. In so doing,
postmoderns seek to liberate themselves by deconstructing the text. After all, all the authors
are dead.

Of course, it is worth keeping in mind that such a hermeneutic must also assume that the
divine Author is dead. In its softer, subtler form, we find deconstructionism among some
who would never consider themselves liberals, and who would even claim to have what they
would characterize as a high view of Scripture. Yet when they encounter the text, they also
deconstruct it. The biblical text, they argue, has to be understood in terms of our modern
understanding. Modern psychology, anthropology, philosophy, and cultural studies have
something to bring to the interpretation of the text, they argue, something to tell us which
the human authors of Scripture missed. In other words, one may start with what it said, but
now we ourselves can decide what it means.

In both its hard and soft forms, deconstructionism has filtered down to the popular culture,
even to those who never heard of Jacques Derrida but have been nonetheless infected with
this postmodern mentality and this subtle form of subversive relativism and subjectivism.
You can hear Derrida in the discourse of adolescents in the mall. You can hear it in the
conversation on the nightly news.

The closing of the postmodern mind is the opposite of what postmodernism claimed to be its
aspiration. Postmodernism claimed that this new postmodern age–with the end of
modernity, the demise of scientific objectivity, and the openness to new forms and
understandings of truth–would lead to an opening of the mind. But as is always the case, the
totalitarian opening of the mind always ends with the radical closing of the mind. There is
nothing less tolerant than the modern ethos of tolerance. There is nothing less open than
the modern idea of open-mindedness. In the darkening sky and the gathering clouds, we see
the haunting closure of this supposedly open mind.

Sociologist Peter Berger reminds us that every single individual operates on the basis of
plausibility structures — certain frameworks of thought that are necessary for our
understanding of the world. For years, Berger and others have been telling us that the
plausibility structures of most Americans have little, if anything, to do with biblical
Christianity. The way most persons think about the world, the way they envision beauty, the
way they conceive love, the way they understand authority and marriage and structure and
principle and truth, all of these things are now basically secular in form. Not only so, but in
recent years we have witnessed the acceleration of this secularism into something that is
deeply dark, and increasingly nihilistic. What Karl Marx once promised would happen seems
to be coming to fulfillment–all that is solid melts into air. In the world of postmodernism, all
institutions are plastic, and all principles are liquid. We can reshape anything. Nothing is
given. Nothing is objective.

We can take the family, for example, and we can melt it down and make it something else. In
fact, we can turn it into an infinite number of liquid arrangements. We can take any
institution, be it government or church, or marriage, or family, and we can make of it what
we will. All principles are liquid, too. We can simply pour them out in a different way. Since
there is nothing really there anyway, we can reconfigure any principle according to our
desires. So we will reshape our entire worldview. We will shape our new philosophy. We will
be humanity come of age, and we will do this in the name of liberation and tolerance and
diversity–and open-mindedness. George Orwell never saw it so clearly, yet this is where we
live. Openness becomes closedness. Freedom becomes bondage, and tolerance becomes

The closing of the postmodern mind is not a pretty sight, nor is it friendly to human rights
and human dignity. We can look to Europe, where the post-Christian age is already
coalescing into a system of laws and a pattern of culture. Sweden, for example, already has
imprisoned a Pentecostal pastor, Ake Green, for preaching a sermon in which he spoke of
the sinfulness of homosexuality. He was recently acquitted of that “crime” by Sweden’s
highest court, but the fact remains that he was arrested and convicted by a lower court – and
the law remains in effect. Across much of Western Europe there is legislation in which it is
can be considered a crime to speak of the sinfulness of any sexual lifestyle, and of
homosexuality in particular.

In Belgium and the Netherlands, there are now official protocols for killing children and
infants in hospitals. Euthanasia has advanced to the point that, in the Netherlands, the
largest medical school in the country just reported that 31 percent of pediatricians have
admitted to killing babies, and 45 percent of neonatologists have admitted to euthanizing
infants–even without informing the parents that that is what happened to their child. And all
this is done, of course, in the name of health, even in the name of compassion. Then along
comes the Christian to say “We have a message about the dignity and sanctity of life,” and he
is told to be quiet. We can say, “Well, that is Europe. That is a post-Christian future that is an
ocean away.”

But even in the United States, we see all this coming together, and the clinched fist of a
closed postmodern mind is increasingly evident. In 1995, for instance, a U.S. District Court
judge in the state of Texas ruled against school prayer, afraid that some teenagers might in
the course of their graduation ceremony actually mention the name of Jesus, or mention the
name of God. When he handed down the ruling, the judge warned teenagers in the state of
Texas, saying, “If any of you shall mention the name of Jesus or God, or any other deity, you
will rue the day that you were born and will spend up to half a year in the Galveston jail.” That
is not Arthur Koestler warning in Darkness at Noon of the Soviet Union in 1941. It is the United
States of America in 1995. Legal observers may argue that this judge’s comments were not
indicative of a universal trend, but is this truly reassuring?

In the state of California, those who would be foster parents are now required to pledge that
they will say nothing that is in any way opposed to homosexuality or to any chosen sexual
lifestyle. Effectively, that means that Christians can no longer be foster parents in the state of
California. What a switch in ten years! Ten years ago, homosexual couples could not be foster
parents in the state of California. Now it is the Christians – who would raise their children as
Christians – who cannot be foster parents in that state.

A recently published book by Sam Harris entitled The End of Faith even claimed that faith
itself is a form of terrorism, and that the United States can no longer afford its long cherished
ideal of religions toleration and religious liberty. According to Harris, religious liberty is
simply too dangerous in a world like this.

We need to take notice of these developments in order that we might understand the
challenge we are about to face, because I fear that as evangelical Christians, we tend to swing
like a pendulum between a naive optimism and a wrongful pessimism. In reality, we have no
right to be either optimistic or pessimistic. To be either optimistic or pessimistic is to be
deluded, and in some sense to deny the sovereignty of God. We cannot be pessimistic because
Scripture tells us we are to be a people of hope. Of course, that does not mean that we are a
naive and ignorant people of hope who close our eyes to the reality around us. No, we find a
hope in something that is far more secure than anything this culture can secure.
But, on the other hand, we cannot be optimistic, either. Optimism is the message sent down
from public relations. Optimism is the happy face that tells us with a chipper voice that
everything is all right. Well, it is not all right, and everything will not be well, not in this age
or in this life. We have no right to be optimistic, but we have no right not to be hopeful.
Evangelicals, sometimes demonstrating a nearly breathtaking naivete, swing between these
pendulum extremes of pessimism and optimism, when Scripture calls us to reality. Be soberminded,
we are told. Gird up the loins of your thinking. Be ready, be alert, be watchful. Be a
watchman on the wall. Have your eyes open. Be ready for action. This is our calling as
Christians, even as the darkness gathers. We are to be the community of the open-eyed, the
intellectually alert, the broken-hearted, and the resolutely hopeful. Pulling that off will take
more than wishful thinking.

~ by Dr. R. Albert Mohler

Dr. R. Albert Mohler Jr. serves as president of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary – the flagship school of the Southern Baptist Convention and one of the largest seminaries in the world.


Darkness At Noon: A Post-Christian Age

We are an affluent and comfortable people. We live in the midst of freedom as
championed by those who established this nation and defined by successive
generations, not only in terms of the originating vision of freedom, but now an
ever-expanding understanding of liberty. We live in a time of prosperity; we live in a time of
trouble. It all depends upon how you look at the world around us.

It is good for Christians to take some time to look at the trouble, for all around us are a
darkening sky and gathering clouds. As we engage this culture and look at it honestly, we
must sense that something has happened — and is even now happening — in our culture.
These major shifts and changes will change everything we know about ministry in terms of
the challenge before us and will draw out the reality of who the church is in the midst of a
gathering conflict. Clouds are darkening.

We are no longer seeing the first signs of cultural trouble, but rather the indicators of
advanced decay. The reality is that people now do not even know what they have lost, much
less that they themselves are lost.

As a nation, we are living in the midst of an intense season of cultural, political, and moral
conflict–that is no longer news. America has been through epic conflicts in the past,
including a bloody civil war. Still, we must wonder if the worldview conflicts of our time may
represent an even deeper conflict than those experienced in times past. We are living in a
time of deep and undeniable trouble.

There is a sense, I think, in this culture that we are waiting for a signal for something to tell
us which way we are going to go. Something is happening and about to happen. The
landscape is changing, the skies are darkening–and this is something we know with a
spiritual perception, a spiritual sense, a spiritual urgency. Something is happening that we as
believers in the Lord Jesus Christ should see and understand. For we cannot say that we were
not warned.

The prophet Joel declared: “I will show wonders in the heavens and on the earth, blood and
fire and columns of smoke. The sun shall be turned to darkness, and the moon to blood,
before the great and awesome day of the Lord comes. And it shall come to pass that everyone
who calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved. For in Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there
shall be those who escape, as the Lord has said, and among the survivors shall be those whom
the Lord calls. (Joel 2:30-32 ESV).

And, from the book of Hebrews: “See that you do not refuse him who is speaking. For if they
did not escape when they refused him who warned them on earth, much less will we escape
if we reject him who warns from heaven. At that time his voice shook the earth, but now he
has promised, “Yet once more I will shake not only the earth but also the heavens.” This
phrase, “Yet once more,” indicates the removal of things that are shaken–that is, things that
have been made–in order that the things that cannot be shaken may remain. Therefore let us
be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus let us offer to God
acceptable worship, with reverence and awe, for our God is a consuming fire.” (Hebrews
12:25-29 ESV)

These passages describe a reality we might call darkness at noon. In these passages we
confront a prophetic vision, a prophetic warning, and a haunting reality. Darkness at Noon–I
borrow this title from Arthur Koestler. In 1941 he saw the Soviet Union in all of its horror and
the Third Reich in all of its hateful fury, and he described this horrifying reality as darkness at
noon. Our times are not the same as Koestler’s, nor are the particular challenges we face. Our
central concerns and fears are not represented by totalitarian governments or foreign
regimes that threaten world domination, but we must see a real and present threat on our
horizon. We can hear the prophet Joel–we can hear him speak of the sun turned to darkness
and the moon turned to blood on the great and awful day of the Lord. This is apocalyptic
imagery–we know that. It is speaking of a judgment, of a day of the Lord that was near on
Joel’s horizon, and yet distant on the horizon of the eschaton, when the Lord Himself shall
come to judge the living and the dead.

The imagery of judgment in this passage — of the sun turned to darkness and the moon to
blood — is a foreboding image that gives us in a graphic picture a sign of the times, and
around us we can see a darkening sky that threatens a darkening sun. We can see darkness at
noon on the dawn.

A central dimension of this reality is the dawning of a post-Christian age. History has been
altered in so many ways in the twists and turns of human experience. But who could have
expected that in our times we would see those nations that once were the cradle of
Christianity become so secularized that they can only be described as post-Christian in
composition, in culture, in theme, and in worldview and understanding? The post-Christian
sense, the post-Christian theme, the post-Christian mentality of these cultures is such that
we can look to the nations of Western Europe and see what a post-Christian culture begins to
look like. We hear the language, we listen to the discourse, we see the laws, we hear the
judgments, we watch the culture at work, and we realize that this is what a nation, a people,
an ethnos, a generation that once knew Christianity but knows it no more, looks like and
sounds like. This is how they live. And it is not just Europe.

Even as demographers, pollsters, and statisticians tell us how many Americans believe in
God, and how many claim belief in the Lord Jesus Christ, still we can see the beginnings of a
post-Christian mentality here in America. Look at the cultural elites–the political elites, the
legal elites, the judicial, academic, and entertainment elites–look at them, and you will
realize that they are largely post-Christian in their mentality.

The prophet Joel speaks of the “day of the Lord,” when the divine judgment would fall like a
terrible and swift sword. In Joel 1, the prophet says, “The word of the Lord that came to Joel,
the son of Pethuel: Hear this, you elders; give ear, all inhabitants of the Land! Has such a
thing happened in your days, or in the days of your fathers? Tell your children of it, and let
your children tell their children, and their children to another generation. What the cutting
locust left, the swarming locust has eaten. What the swarming locust left, the hopping locust
has eaten, and what the hopping locust left, the destroying locust has eaten.” (Joel 1:1-4 ESV)
This text speaks most directly of a crop, but it also points to a culture. Our culture has been
savaged by locusts. What the cutting locust leaves, the swarming locusts eat. What the
swarming locusts leave, the hopping locust takes. What the hopping locust leaves, the
destroying locust destroys.

We can give evidence of this in individual words, each representing an individual loss.
Consider what has happened to truth, to beauty, to dignity, love, and marriage. Consider
what is even now happening in our midst. We are witnessing the dawn of a post-Christian
age in our own times, in our own nation, in our own world, and among our own people. We
can see the ravages that will come as the sacred things are profaned and trampled under foot.
We see the evidence of this decadence and downfall in the culture–in art and music and
literature. We are a people whose cultural and moral aspirations are indicated by the Neilson
ratings and by the lowest common denominator of the entertainment industry. We are a
nation, a people, entertained by a show called “Desperate Housewives,” by reality TV that
celebrates the lowest and most base human instincts, and by entertainment that panders and
is profane.

Look at what has happened to marriage and family. The idea of romantic love is now
commonly reduced to lust. We have largely destroyed the purity of marriage. This central
institution of civilization has been decried, denigrated, and even discarded. Marriage is under
attack by those who would transform it into something it cannot be and never was, and
truthfully never will be.

We see all of this and we wonder how it could have happened. And yet Scripture has told us
that sinners love darkness rather than the light. Let me put it this way–in a truly post-
Christian age, the saddest loss of all is a loss of the memory of what was lost. The saddest
aspect of our dawning post-Christian age is that there is no longer even a memory of what
was discarded and what was denied and rejected. Having lived for so long on the memory of
Christian truth, without the substance of Christian truth, the culture now grows hostile to
that truth.

Even the memory of what once was is now being lost in our generation. We are living in an
age in which all constraints and restraints are to be thrown off–all in the name of the
liberation that does not liberate, but enslaves. We are seeing the coming of a repressive post-
Christian age that is packaged as an age of unprecedented liberty. We must name it for what
it is — and be aware of what a challenge this represents for the believing church.

~ by Dr. R. Albert Mohler

Dr. R. Albert Mohler Jr. serves as president of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary – the flagship school of the Southern Baptist Convention and one of the largest seminaries in the world.


Dear seclaris humanis atheisis:

Ok, so then what is your “idea” of Whom or what God is and how did you come to that conclusion?  You haven’t rejected God, but you call God a “hypothetical being?” You said you were a secular humanist and that you didn’t believe in God or that you even needed to. This is very confusing. Even though God created this earth, He knows about every person, everything, and even every sparrow that falls from the sky. Where is your real argument? What lies at the depth of your antagonism with the idea of God or the idea of God being creator?

I would like to pose something to you. So, you say you have not rejected God. Ok. But you say you have a problem believing in the “Christian” God. Now, I feel some of the reasons why you do not believe in the Christian God are from your presuppositions. This is because your presuppositions will not allow you to examine without bias the evidence that is presented to you for God’s existence. Your presupposition is that there is no Christian God; therefore, no matter what I might present to you to show His existence, you must interpret it in a manner consistent with your presupposition: namely, that there is no “Christian” God. If I were to have a video tape of God coming down from heaven, you’d say it was a special effect. If I had a thousand eye-witnesses saying they saw Him, you’d say it was mass-hysteria. If I had Old Testament prophecies fulfilled in the New Testament, you’d say they were forged, dated incorrectly, or not real prophecies.

So, I cannot prove anything to you since your presupposition won’t allow it. They are limited. Your presupposition cannot allow you to rightly determine God’s existence from evidence — providing that there were factual proofs of His existence. Don’t you see? If I DID have incontrovertible proof, your presupposition would force you to interpret the facts consistently with your presupposition and you would not be able to see the proof. If you truly would like to seek the answer, what kind of evidence would you accept that would prove the Christian God’s existence? I must see what your presuppositions are and work either with them or against them. What are your thoughts?

So, your answer is that Christianity is a myth. Yet, you still approach me with your presuppositions. I asked you to provide me with “the kind of evidence” you would accept. You’ve only provided me with your presupposition of “myth.”

I will pray that God reveals to me the answers you need…answers that I will not have to manufacture…but will be the evidence you need.

The first step on your quest is unconditional surrender to the absolute authority of Holy Scripture; the Bible is your only hope. It is your only hope for eternity. It is also the only hope for your scientific and philosophic endeavor in this life. God has revealed Himself through nature and history. The world’s wisdom has been made foolishness with God. It is God’s plan that is being realized in and through what man does as well as in and through man’s environment. Whatsoever comes to pass comes to pass in accordance with the one all comprehensive plan or counsel of God. All the facts that confront you as you look about yourself and as you look within yourself are therefore revelational of God. The human mind as knowing no less than the trees that are known is revelational of God. For what happens according to the plan of God happens in accordance with the nature of God’s being. Nothing could exist, either as directly made by God or as made by man, the creature of God. The subject of knowledge and the object of knowledge alike are revelational of God. The apostle Paul says in the first chapter of Romans that all men know God. They cannot help but know God. Therefore they cannot help but know that they themselves are creatures of God. Human self-consciousness involves God-consciousness. Human self-consciousness would be self-consciousness in a vacuum unless it implied consciousness of God. You have the sense of deity ineradicably impressed upon you.

Therefore your freedom is the freedom of God’s creature. It is freedom to do that which is in accord with or to do that which is against the revealed will of God, but in either case that which is in accord with the plan of God. I want to place a special emphasis upon the fact that even the evil that man does by virtue of his sinful will is still in accord with the plan of God and as such is revelatory of God. Man, not God, is the responsible author of sin. But man could not sin if his sinning were not, in spite of himself, revelatory of God. Man does not sin in a vacuum. He could not sin in a vacuum. The possibility of sin presupposes the all-comprehensive plan of God. God reveals his holiness in his wrath upon the sinner. God is angry with the wicked every day. “For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold down truth in unrighteousness” (Rom 1:18). Paul tells us that the sinner’s conscience excuses or accuses him according as he obeys or disobeys the revealed will of God (Rom 2:14-15). Man’s self-consciousness is moral self-consciousness. And as self-consciousness in general involves consciousness of God, so man’s moral self-consciousness involves consciousness of covenant relationship to God. To know himself at all man must know himself to be a covenant being. He knows he is either keeping or breaking the covenant.

You cannot look in any direction without seeing the face and the claims of God. You walk under the brilliant spotlight of the revelational claims of God. It is the basic revelational character of all created being that constitutes the foundation of truth for man. Man is inherently enveloped in and by truth. But truth is not an abstraction. Truth is truth about God and the universe. Thus man is naturally confronted by truth. When he speaks untruth he speaks that which he knows to be untruth. When philosophers think out systems of philosophy that are not based upon the Creator-creature distinction they know, in the depth of their hearts, that they are doing this in order to suppress the truth about themselves. Knowing God to be their Creator they do not glorify him as such. From the beginning of history, even before the entrance of sin, supernatural thought-communication on the part of God to man was added to God’s revelation to man in his own constitution and in the universe about him. There are two forms of revelation, revelation in the facts of the created universe whether within or about man and revelation by way of God’s directly speaking to man, are mutually involved in one another. Just as two rafters of a house need to support one another, so these two forms of revelation need to support one another. I don’t know how, but what you have experienced in your past up to now has determined that the God of the Bible must be limited in order to make room for the freedom of man. The attitude toward the revelation of God is determined by the assumption of human freedom as a measure of independence from God. Therefore, there is no real ground for saying that the revelation of God is really ultimately the revelation of God, the self-contained and self-sufficient God of which the Bible speaks. You cannot successfully seek for truth if first you have cut yourself off from truth. It is like today…a very sunny day, and while standing in the light of the sun, you take your eyes out, and then doubt whether the sun exists.

God will provide the shock and awe, and I really don’t think you’re going to appreciate that too much when the time comes. You already have been given overwhelming truth. You have to want to be healed….

I didn’t say God couldn’t shake you to your core….I’m saying you probably won’t like it when it occurs. Not probably…but most likely you will not like it when it occurs. God will shake things up in your life – or leave you to your own devices. Which one He decides upon, I just don’t know. I will help the human race by proclaiming the freeing Gospel of Jesus Christ.  I want to ask you, what part of your “Christian” upbringing did you in?

Hey, you know there is no proof, nor convincing, except that “Someone” rocks your world in a manner that will shake you all up inside. The statement you made is very plain about water boiling but to you, regarding faith, grace & works, you have nothing to do with it nor do you truly understand it from a Christian’s spiritual viewpoint. I say this because you do not believe or profess to be a Christian.  If you can, pray and ask God to speak to you about what I’ve shared, and then give me your thoughts.

Jesus Christ came into this world to open the eyes of the blind, quench the thirst of the weary wanderer, and give the bread of Life to those who seek to be filled. Jesus Christ can fulfill every need you have, and heal every hurt you’ve acquired over the years. Acknowledge your sinfulness, turn away from it, and place your trust in God through Jesus Christ — He will give you true enlightenment.

May God bless you with Himself!


The Story is a beautiful, powerful, yet simple explanation of the Gospel of Jesus Christ using 4 major themes found in the Bible: Creation. The Fall. The Rescue. The Restoration. The Christian worldview is clearly communicated to those who are interested in what Christians believe and also provides an understanding of how to become a Christian through faith in the Gospel.

So, how does The Story answer worldview questions?

1) Creation answers, “How did everything begin?”
2) The Fall (of Mankind) answers, “What went wrong?”
3) The Rescue (of Mankind) answers, “Is there any hope?”
4) The Restoration answers, “What will the future hold?”