Why I Don’t Argue With Atheists and Other Critics of the God Who Made Them

“There is a lad here who has five barley loaves and two small fish, but what are they among so many…?”  So the men sat down, in number about five thousand… He distributed… as much as they wanted…  Then those men, when they had seen the sign that Jesus did, said, “This is truly the Prophet who is to come into the world.”

Same people, the next day…

Therefore they said to Him, “What sign will You perform then, that we may see it and believe You?”

No sign will suffice for those who feel they have nothing to gain from belief.  No argument will persuade them, no evidence will be accepted as legitimate.  And I’m not even talking about the atheists.  The moochers who wanted free bread instead of eternal life were none other than God’s own chosen people.   They wasted no time convincing themselves that there is no God; they just weren’t interested unless He handed out stuff.

There are no atheists in the Bible, at least not in the contemporary sense of the word.  Yet “unbelievers” pack the pages from beginning to end.

Luke 16: 29-31

Abraham saith unto him, They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them.

30 And he said, Nay, father Abraham: but if one went unto them from the dead, they will repent.

31 And he said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead.

That kind of wraps it up, doesn’t it?  The Israelites were freed from Egypt after a series of stunning signs and miracles.  They heard God speak.  They ate manna for forty years.  Every promise made by God was kept yet unbelief survives as their legacy.  Jesus Christ, God incarnate fulfilled the prophesies, performed miracles and tied the religious authorities in knots with his wisdom.  The result?  Even he “marveled at their unbelief.”  Pilate didn’t debate Christ or his claims.  He just dismissed him with cynicism.  “What is truth?”  Notice the Way, the Truth and the Life didn’t try to straighten him out.  If standing in the presence of God Himself isn’t enough then there is no enough.

Make no mistake.  We all stand in His presence.  “The heavens declare the glory of God…”  “For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse, because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened…”  

They knew God.  They did not glorify Him.  The religious people.  The unbelievers.

So what about the atheists who sit in judgment of the God they insist they don’t believe in and demand the existence of the infinite be proven through imperfect examinations of miniscule slices of poorly understood reality?  The honest, clear-thinking logic Über Alles duck-speakers who won’t even comprehend your post before letting fly?

They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them.

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38 Responses to Why I Don’t Argue With Atheists and Other Critics of the God Who Made Them

  1. Well done. I’m going to have to ponder this one for a while.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Wally Fry says:

    Wow. That sorta hit me right between the eyes. Nicely done.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. madblog says:

    Wally, his stuff does tend to do that. Amen.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. madblog says:

    Reblogged this on Messages from the Mythical and commented:
    Much better than I could say it.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. tildeb says:

    No sign will suffice for those who feel they have nothing to gain from belief. No argument will persuade them, no evidence will be accepted as legitimate.

    Let me see if I’ve got this straight: it is non believers who reject evidence in order to sit in judgement of what they don’t believe in because they insist on proof through imperfect examinations of miniscule slices of poorly understood reality.

    Right. It is the believer who can avoid this pitfall by using compelling evidence from scripture as proof without any imperfect examinations of miniscule slices of poorly understood reality.
    Reality’s replacement? Trust in the authority of scripture.

    Right.

    Which scripture is the right one again? Which god? And you know this how?

    Yeah, that’s what I thought.

    Like

    • lang3063 says:

      Interesting mode of discussion. Pose loaded questions then answer them yourself. Pretty much what I’ve characterized as duck-speak, especially given the endless tedium of your posts in other discussions. Since you clearly know what I think and how I’ll answer I have to wonder why you’re wasting your time. Of course your questions have been answered dozens of times by several bloggers. I feel no obligation to respond to questions answered more eloquently and convincingly by many of my betters. If you’d like to improve your tone and join the rest of us humans in a discussion you are more than welcome. If not, this is your last post on my blog.

      Liked by 2 people

      • tildeb says:

        Well then, be the first to answer my ‘loaded’ questions:

        Which scripture is the right one again? Which god? And you know this how?

        and demonstrate with your answers for any reasonable person why non belief as you and so many others claim is unreasonable. Go ahead and show my presumption that you have no means to do so… other than your naked prior belief alone… is incorrectly placed.

        But if you can’t do that (and I freely admit that I presume you can’t), then stop pretending that your cell phone works almost by mystery of an “imperfect examinations of miniscule slices of poorly understood reality.” That’s simply not true and both us know this is an intentional misrepresentation by you to support your indoctrinated religious beliefs (’cause you didn’t get ’em from compelling evidence from reality) that are contrary to that “imperfect examinations of miniscule slices of poorly understood reality.”.

        Like

      • lang3063 says:

        Tildeb, thanks for making so many of my points for me. Your accusation of intentional misrepresentation and infantile characterization of me as somebody who must “pretend my cell phone works almost by mystery, etc.” in order to maintain belief in God are too idiotic for comment. I was wrong about one thing though. THIS is your last post on my blog.

        Liked by 2 people

  6. ColorStorm says:

    Rock solid. The deception of so called atheism is in its alleged credibility, as you pointed out, ‘that there is no such thing as an atheist.’ He SAYS in his heart, there is no God.

    To be fair though, ‘they have Moses and the prophets,’ these were people who never questioned the existence of God; they just didn’t like his Christ; and this was not spoken to Gentiles, as they had no law, no promises, no adoption, no covenants, still, you are 100 per cent correct, that all men have no excuse, thanks to creation.

    ‘No argument, no evidence will suffice’ Again, perfect. As a rule, thank God there is grace, for ‘let every man be persuaded in his own mind,’ and one mans reluctance to engage a Jehovah’s witness for example, may be another mans ministry.

    Your closing thought about having a pre-paid answer even before the post was thought upon, says it all. Again, great thoughts here.

    (For what its worth, there are people who have admitted that it was the other worldly patience of some believers who helped them see the error of their ways, but yes, many times it is right to simply wash the hands)

    Liked by 2 people

    • lang3063 says:

      CS thanks for the comment. I am concerned about persistence in witnessing; only God knows what it takes to win someone to Christ. I just don’t think that endlessly plowing the same furrow with intractable bloggers is always in that category. I think it can be counterproductive and pull us into the un-Christ-like behavior of seeking to win arguments or battering opponents, not to mention the time we spend mentally constructing replies when we should be doing something else. I’m spending this time responding to you when I’m actually supposed to be working on a novel. It is WAY too easy to get pulled off task. I just think it’s helpful sometimes to remember that God has already said it as perfectly as it can be said and will make it clear to anybody who has the tiniest spark of desire for the truth.

      Liked by 2 people

      • ColorStorm says:

        Agree completely, and since I came to blogsville, it has been a brave new world.

        It’s something huh lang, where you can see a scripture as a savor of life, and have somebody else see the same as a savor of death.

        Let God be true.

        Liked by 1 person

  7. David says:

    “No argument will persuade them, no evidence will be accepted as legitimate.”

    I don’t want to misunderstand. This is how you view many of those who disagree with your position and/or conclusions with respect to God, correct?

    Like

    • lang3063 says:

      “This is how you view many of those who disagree with your position and/or conclusions with respect to God, correct?” What does my position and/or conclusions have to do with anything? What I think isn’t the issue. The arguments I may make or the evidence I may present are the next best thing to meaningless compared to the undeniable presence of God. The sun doesn’t cease to exist just because there are blind people. But a blind man who insists there is no sun because HE doesn’t see it and will not entertain the eyewitness testimony of sighted people is wrong and foolish. This is exactly the position of the militant atheist. “I don’t see him so he CAN’T be there.” The sun doesn’t make arguments to prove its existence. Humanity hasn’t followed some trail of evidence in order to deduce its existence. It’s just there. You see it or you don’t. If you don’t then it’s wise to rely on the testimony of those who do. If you won’t there’s no help for you. That’s the point of the post, the bulk of which, by the way, addresses “religious” people. My arguments and evidence will never convince you but you have Moses, the prophets and a man who rose from the dead. If they don’t convince you, you can’t be convinced.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. David says:

    ‘What does my position and/or conclusions have to do with anything? ”

    I think you misunderstood. I wasn’t asking about your position. I was asking how you viewed those who disagreed with you. Your statement that “No argument will persuade them, no evidence will be accepted as legitimate” is a statement about how you view those who disagree with you, is it not?

    “The arguments I may make or the evidence I may present are the next best thing to meaningless compared to the undeniable presence of God.”

    Ah, but right here (and with what follows), you are making a argument. You are making a claim. You are presenting evidence.

    “The sun doesn’t make arguments to prove its existence.”

    Um, I can see the sun.

    “If they don’t convince you, you can’t be convinced.”

    Could you be convinced that you are wrong? If not, then I might conclude that no argument will persuade you, no evidence will be accepted as legitimate.

    Like

    • lang3063 says:

      “Um, I can see the sun.” Yes, you can. How much time would you spend debating somebody who insists there is no sun? “Could you be convinced that you are wrong?” Could you be convinced the sun doesn’t exist?

      Like

  9. David says:

    “Could you be convinced the sun doesn’t exist?”

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but from your question, I assume that you are saying that you could not be convinced that you are wrong.

    So, I believe that I can conclude that no argument will persuade you that you are wrong, no evidence against you position will be accepted as legitimate. Am I correct about this conclusion? I ask, because I do not wish to misunderstand.

    As to your questions, we’re fallible creatures, so it’s always possible that I’m wrong about the existence of the sun. Now, given the data collected to date, there seems to be a very high degree of certainty that the sun exists, so it’s going to take more than, say, a text that says it doesn’t exist.

    However, if the sun does not actually exist, and since the alleged sun is a physical object subject to experimentation, I would think one could come up with a testable hypothesis that demonstrates that the sun does not exist. In that case, I guess I’d have to spend some time debating the proposition.

    Can you see heaven? Can you see hell? Just curious.

    Like

    • lang3063 says:

      “…so it’s always possible that I’m wrong about the existence of the sun.” I think there is a high probability that you don’t actually believe this. If you don’t believe this then you are striking a pose to make a point and further an argument that has no value because you’ve based it on something that even you don’t believe. I’m not interested. If you do believe it’s possible you’re wrong about the self-evident sun that rises over your house every morning then you have no basis for recognizing reality. The data and experimentation that demonstrate its non-existence might not exist. The piece of paper you read the peer reviewed article from might not exist. The eyes you read it with might not exist. We have diagnoses for people in such a condition.
      “Can you see heaven? Can you see hell? Just curious.” Can you see gravity? Can you see electrons? Can you see love or justice or the center of the earth? Just curious. But to answer your question, no, I can’t see heaven or hell but I know somebody who does.

      Like

  10. David says:

    “I think there is a high probability that you don’t actually believe this.”

    Actually, I do believe it. I think that the chances that the sun doesn’t exist are very, very, very small, but it’s a possibility. The important thing is that we really do have the means to test the hypothesis, imperfect those these methods may be. And I would add, the evidence that the sun exists is great enough that we can take this for granted in our daily existence.

    “If you do believe it’s possible you’re wrong about the self-evident sun that rises over your house every morning then you have no basis for recognizing reality. “

    No basis? Not so. I have ample basis. Repeated observations suggest that there really is a sun. That is, it’s very likely that “reality” includes an actual sun (and gravity and electrons). The fact that there’s a tiny possibility that the sun does not exist does not interfere with my daily journey through “reality” and life. Certainly, I can operate on the assumption that the sun exists, even in the absence of absolute, 100% metaphysical certainty. It’s quite possible to “recognize reality” in the absence of absolute certainty.

    “No, I can’t see heaven or hell.”

    Well, there you go then. Based on available observations, it seems that it’s much more likely that the sun exists than either heaven or hell.

    However, I still haven’t received a clear answer to my main question here, and I don’t want to guilty of digressing.

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but I assume that you are saying that you could not be convinced that you are wrong. There is no argument will persuade you that you are wrong, no evidence against you position will be accepted as legitimate. Am I correct about this conclusion? I ask, because I do not wish to misunderstand.

    Like

    • lang3063 says:

      Look, David the point of the post is that God’s existence is self-evident. Your response seems to mean that nothing is self-evident. Do I understand that correctly? Oh yeah, to get your “main question” off the plate, no, no argument will convince me I haven’t experienced and known what I have experienced and known. But of course, in your universe of uncertainty I could be wrong about whether or not I can be convinced. What have you got?

      Like

  11. David says:

    “Look, David the point of the post is that God’s existence is self-evident.”

    Yahweh’s existence is self-evident? I’m not so sure about that. Might be some sort of god-like entity out there, but I don’t think that the existence of the specific god of the Bible named Yahweh is “self-evident.”

    “Oh yeah, to get your “main question” off the plate, no, no argument will convince me I haven’t experienced and known what I have experienced and known.”

    You say that you’ve meet folks about whom it can be said that no argument will persuade them, no evidence will be accepted as legitimate. Doesn’t matter what evidence you present, and doesn’t matter how well your argument is constructed, doesn’t matter that something is self-evident. There’s just no chance that you can convince them that they are wrong.

    It’s puzzling, isn’t it? Well, I know exactly how you feel. I sympathize. Looks like we have something in common.

    Like

    • lang3063 says:

      I don’t think that the existence of the specific god of the Bible named Yahweh is “self-evident.”

      I think you understand that self-evident things are not recognized as self-evident to those lacking the capacity to perceive them. They can also be ignored or denied by those lacking the desire to perceive or acknowledge them. If you tell me that you don’t recognize the God of the Bible as self-evident that’s a self-report that I can’t refute. But it doesn’t change God.

      You say that you’ve meet folks about whom it can be said that no argument will persuade them…

      Please read the comment in context. Who does it refer to? Is there any mention of people I’ve met? The comment is preceded by a condition. It is in the context of the preceding paragraphs. It is followed by a qualifying declaration.

      Like

  12. David says:

    “Please read the comment in context. Who does it refer to? Is there any mention of people I’ve met?”

    Ok, so you’re saying that you’ve never meet (or interacted?) anyone about whom it could be said that no argument will persuade them. I think I have it now.

    “I think you understand that self-evident things are not recognized as self-evident to those lacking the capacity to perceive them.”

    Well then, it would seem that saying that something is “self-evident” isn’t saying very much.

    If “self-evident” things “cannot be recognized by those lacking the capacity to perceive them,” then how can you tell the difference between something that is genuinely self-evident from something that you’ve simply declared to be self-evident? If self-evident things are not clear and obvious to everyone, then what is self-evident is really just a matter of opinion.

    So, in the case of Yahweh, what is “self-evident?”

    Like

    • lang3063 says:

      Ok, so you’re saying that you’ve never meet (or interacted?) anyone about whom it could be said that no argument will persuade them. I think I have it now.
      Not saying anything about who I’ve met. It’s not in the post. All I’m saying is the post has a specific focus which I’m happy to discuss. If you’d like to discuss something else write about it. I’ll be glad to stop by your blog and discuss it.
      As for What is self-evident about Yahweh, I don’t need to restate the scripture passages cited. You may disagree with them but your question is answered in the original post.

      Like

      • David says:

        “Not saying anything about who I’ve met. It’s not in the post. “

        Well, I guess I’m thoroughly confused.

        From your post:

        “So what about the atheists who sit in judgment of the God they insist they don’t believe in and demand the existence of the infinite be proven through imperfect examinations of miniscule slices of poorly understood reality?”

        Are you saying the above (currently living) atheists are among those about whom it could be said that no argument will persuade them? You’re saying this about someone. I’m just finding it a little tricky to figure out to whom you are referring in this paragraph and in the title of your post.

        “As for What is self-evident about Yahweh, I don’t need to restate the scripture passages cited. You may disagree with them but your question is answered in the original post.”

        Ah. So Yahweh is “self-evident” from, or because of, events described in an ancient text? For example, Yahweh is self-evident because Jesus fed the five thousand? Is this what you are saying? I’m not trying to be difficult; I just don’t want to misunderstand.

        Like

      • lang3063 says:

        We don’t seem to be able to get past a need for clarification of what the post says and means. I guess I need to brush up on my writing skills. My apologies. The post says what I wrote it to say as clearly as I can say it. Short of writing a commentary on it I’m not sure I can really answer you by doing anything but continuing to restate what it already says. Even then, there’s no guarantee that my answers would be helpful.

        Like

  13. madblog says:

    David, am I correct in my understanding that you are offering to prove…prove…that God does not exist, and to convince lang of this? And then he’s going to deny what you have proven even though you’ve just proved it?
    Cause that’s what I think you’re saying.

    Like

    • David says:

      “David, am I correct in my understanding that you are offering to prove…prove…that God does not exist.”

      Prove…prove…that God does not exist? Well, I suppose this partly depends on what you mean by “God”, but I certainly don’t think that this is what I’m saying. Could you clarify? How or why did I give this impression?

      Like

  14. An excellent post, if Jesus did not argue why should I? No one has the power to change anyone’s mind about anything. Evidence can be presented and it can be accepted or rejected. Each individual must decide for themselves and this is one beautiful aspect of the gospel, choose this day whom you will serve…

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Great post!

    Tildeb and David have both been banned from my blog too.

    I agree with you 100 percent. No amount of evidence will convince people who simply don’t want to believe.

    Liked by 1 person

    • lang3063 says:

      Thanks for the comment. These guys just make me shake my head. It took thousands of years to develop technology that can connect every human with every other human and the trolls use it for temper tantrums and insults (still a little burned up about a certain exchange between Madblog and a “crusader for truth” who shall remain nameless.) So much for the man-made Utopia.

      Liked by 1 person

    • David says:

      “Tildeb and David have both been banned from my blog too.”

      You banned me?

      I’m not sure that this accurate reflects what happened. As I recall, I asked if you wanted me to leave you alone. You indicated that you thought I should go away. So, I said “Kay. Bye.” This is banning me?

      “No amount of evidence will convince people who simply don’t want to believe.”

      So strange. Exactly how I feel about you.

      Like

      • Trust me David, you’ve been banned.

        You should wonder why I let Ark (as bad as he can be) continue to post but not you.

        Honest self-reflection can be very telling.

        Like

      • lang3063 says:

        David,

        You have not been banned from my blog. You did not throw a tantrum, at least not on my blog. I can’t speak for I53 but I wouldn’t call your participation here trolling. I think the “Kay. Bye.” is on one of I53’s threads. My threshold for “banning” is name calling, abuse and language. I guess I could review all your posts to be extra sure but I don’t think you’ve done any of those things.

        My apologies for any lack of clarity on my part or misunderstanding.

        Like

      • David says:

        “My apologies for any lack of clarity on my part or misunderstanding.”

        Thanks, I appreciated the clarification. I think I’m probably too sarcastic and flippant at times, but I do try to keep it civil.

        Like

      • lang3063 says:

        I think I’m probably too sarcastic and flippant at times, but I do try to keep it civil.

        Yeah, well welcome to the club.

        Like

  16. lang3063 says:

    Comment threads are for comments on the topic at hand. Or things that involve this blog and it’s author. Anything else needs to be taken outside.

    Like

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