Saturday, 25 February 2012

Things Christians Say, Part 4 - Just rebelling against God!

A weekly series of responses to the things christians say to atheists, based on the video reproduced here on 30th January 2012.  The aim is to tackle one every weekend, to give both a moderate, polite response to each question ('Piano'), followed by a more forceful rebuttal of the same question ('Forte'). 

These so-called atheists are just rebelling against god.


This is an interesting accusation, because I think it is often true of young people who were indoctrinated into a religion. However, it is not universally so. In order to rebel against a god you would have to believe in one to start with. This is where it becomes difficult to lend any credence to the claims that they are atheists. Rebelling against god is in fact one thing that cannot possibly be claimed by any atheist. If they do believe then they are a rebel. If not, they are an atheist.

How often do I hear people claim that they used to be atheists too, but that they have now found Jesus? It is not rare by any means.

But then again, the same people sometimes tell me that they are frightened about the afterlife and that they can't understand how we can live a life without hope. As soon as I hear this I personally begin to feel that they are in the category of rebels against god.

As for me, since I am largely sure that there is no god, I don't fully understand the expression 'rebelling against god'.



For those christians who claim now to have seen the light I find that they parade their former atheism as a bit of a badge of pride. They use it in what they think is a subtle attempt to persuade you that you might also be 'saved' in future.  It is perfectly possible to change your mind – they say.

In their case they might have been rebelling against god or against their parents. They might have been more strident at that time than the current 'New Atheists' but I suspect that they don't realise that rudeness and stridency are not necessary characteristics for an atheist.

The only qualification required in order to be an atheist is a lack of belief in gods. Most of you are also atheists – I just take it one god further than you do.

Last week:   If evolution were true, we'd see dogs giving birth to cats!
Next week:  Well - what stops you from going out and just killing everybody?


Kenny Wyland said...

I know there were a LOT of "Things Christians Say" in that video, but I hope you do continue and make it all the way through because I'm really enjoying reading each of these. Well written and articulated and well structured in the piano/forte format. Thanks!

Anonymous said...

I for one AM rebelling against God. To understand why this is so I need to explain how I came to be a "strong" atheist, one who says he knows there ain't no such thing.

There are many, many gods in the world. Some of these gods only exist within the minds of their believers. Others can be demonstrated to exist. For example, a cult in Polynesia worship a God called Prince Philip. This is a real dude, he lives in England. For another example there are a great many people who worship a God called The Universe. Obviously this one exists too.

Since I admit that there are gods, and to do otherwise would be to claim I know who the REAL god is and why theirs are not, I would have to be a polytheist. I'm not though. Instead I say NONE of those are Gods. But I'm left with the former problem if I insist that the word "God" can point at a thing or things in the universe.

Left in this conundrum and thinking about how these gods come to be worshiped etc... I came to the conclusion that "God" is a title, not a species of entity or a particular entity. Examining the act that endows something with this title, deification, I came to find that there are strong moral reasons to believe that this is an abominable the very least its the act of cowardice in the truest sense (cower before your god).

So I take the stance of the first true rebel, Satan, as he is described by Christianity (in Judaism he's just an accuser, a prosecutor). I say that no entity deserves this title and reject the idea that a being has any moral claim to me. I'm the angel that refuses to bow down.

Of course, I also think the idea of this omnipotent YHWH thing is crazy...but that's sort of beside the point for me now.