I’ve been a bit out of the atheist activtism/slacktivism game for a bit. Life’s been busy and stressful, and spending my days going through the grind of “debating” (I use this term loosely) with theists on Twitter, blogs, etc., became a bit of a chore. I still don’t plan to dive back into my atheism much, but I couldn’t help but put a little something out there about an article I came across (thanks to The Friendly Atheist). It called Atheist Agenda Wants You to Turn Your Back on Christ, written by Jennifer LeClaire. I can’t say I’ve read any of Jennifer’s other articles (if she has any), but I can say without a doubt, that her take on the atheist agenda (whatever that means) is so colossally far-fetched, I had to respond. So here it goes. Below is her article, word for word. I’ll be responding to as many points as possible.
P.S. Read the comments section at the link above. They’re even worse than her.
Anything the gay agenda can do, the atheists can do better.
And what exactly is the gay agenda? Equal rights? The right not to be beaten or killed by homophobes simply because they were born with a different sexual preference?
That seems to be the unbeliever’s mantra for 2013 as godless radicals rise up not only for recognition—and not only to tear down all things Christian in the public square—but to actually woo born-again Bible believers to the dark side.
Is the implication here that one who is godless must, therefore, be radical? Or is there a distinction between radical and run-of-the-mill atheists?
When you say “tear down all things Christian in the public square,” do you mean public or private property? There is a very important Constitutional distinction here. I think it’s safe to say that (generally-speaking) atheists don’t really care what you do in private, provided you’re not harming others. It’s your self-insertion into the government, our secular government, that we care about. That violates the Constitution, and it wreaks of Christian privilege, which has infected this country for hundreds of years. We (atheists) want equality. You (Christians) want to retain your special privileges, without any room for people not like you.
Call it reverse evangelism.
I suggest you look up the word evangelism in the dictionary. It does not apply here.
A growing number of atheist activists are no longer content with “freedom from religion” campaigns that seek to keep the local football stars from wearing John 3:16 on their helmets or to stop Christmas caroling on elementary school campuses.
In what circumstances would a football player in a public school wearing John 3:16 on their helmet be appropriate? If a football player, or an entire team put “All praise due Allah” on their helmets, would that be appropriate? Your privilege is showing again. Let’s not forget that public (government-funded) schools are prevented by the Constitution from endorsement (including the appearance of) of a particular religion. It’s called the endorsement test, and is used by the U.S. Supreme Court. If a high school football team’s helmets made reference to Allah, would you interpret that as meaning that it was a Muslim football team? Somehow I think you would, and you’d probably be offended. The same endorsement test would also apply to the Christmas carols. How about singing songs of all types – Christian, Muslim, Jewish, Buddhist, Hindu, Sikh, and secular? Again, Christian privilege.
This new breed of atheist activism wants to inject doubt into your doctrine with its own brand of Christless charisma.
I’m not sure what this “new breed of atheism” thing is. Of course atheism is Christ-less. And yeah, I can be charismatic. 🙂 But what’s your point?
Consider Peter Boghossian, a philosophy instructor and author of a hot new book dubbed A Manual for Creating Atheists. Yes, it’s actually a book that aims to equip nonbelievers with the skills they need to talk believers into willfully turning their back on Christ. This atheist is hoping to drive Christians into full-blown apostasy.
I am aware of the book but have not read it, so I can’t really opine on the nature of the book. Have you read the book, Jennifer? I’m guessing not, which makes me wonder why you’re opining on something you haven’t actually read. And since apostasy isn’t a real thing, who cares…
“Faith is an unreliable reasoning process,” Boghossian told Religion News Service. “It will not take you to reality. So we need to help people value processes of reasoning that will lead them to the truth.”
Jesus is the truth. He’s also the way and the life. (See John 14:6.)
I full agree with Boghosian’s assessment. Faith is not a virtue. It’s dangerous. It’s intellectual laziness. Believing things without evidence is not a path to reality. It’s a path to delusion. And quoting the Bible is meaningless. Unless we know it’s actually true (we don’t), it’s a meaningless text, of no more worth than a Spiderman comic.
Nevertheless, Boghossian’s book offers specific reverse-evangelism techniques, such as avoiding facts and working instead to get someone to question what they believe, avoiding any show of frustration because so-called “de-conversion” takes longer than conversion, and avoiding politics because they sidetrack the discussion.
There we go with that term, evangelism, again. I don’t think it means what you think it does. And I’m not sure where your conversion vs. de-conversion timeline comes from. I suspect you made it up.
Meanwhile, there are bona fide atheist megachurches springing up across the U.S. These groups reportedly look like any other Sunday morning worship service—except that God is not in the mix. It’s a godless church. According to CBN, British comedians Sanderson Jones and Pippa Evans founded the movement and plan to kick-start more anti-God assemblies in the U.S.
Simply because people of like mind congregate does not make them a church. Look up the definition of church and tell me how it applies here, because it doesn’t. I belong to a humanist organization. We have cookouts (including charitable activities by the way, for those who erroneously assume that atheists don’t give). Does that make us a church? Is a knitting club a church if they meet on Sunday? Of course not. You do not get to re-define what a church is, to further a spurious claim. Furthermore, being atheist and being anti-God are not the same thing. In fact, if you’re anti-God, you’re not even an atheist. You’re a theist with a bad attitude. You see, being anti-God means against God. If you are against God, then you believe he (or she, it, or they) exists. Therefore, you are not an atheist, but a theist or deist. Get your definitions straight.
“I think the image that we have put forward in a lot of ways has been a scary, mean, we want to tear down the walls, we want to do destructive things kind of image is what a lot of people have of us,” atheist Elijah Senn told CBN. “I’m really excited to be able to come together and show that it’s not about destruction. It’s about making things and making things better.”
I buy that statement 100%, because it’s true.
Except that the radical atheist agenda is about destruction. It’s about destroying the faith of others.
Now we’re back to radicals again. Radical is just a buzzword used to discredit your opponent. It’s an inflammatory statement that has no basis in fact. Additionally, it’s not about destroying anyone’s faith. That’s preposterous. You seem to equate questioning with destruction. If you like country music, and I play a pop song for you, am I trying to destroy your love of country music, or am I introducing you to something different? Providing a new idea or counter-argument is not destruction. Besides, if your faith is that strong, shouldn’t it stand up to an scrutiny? The only person who can destroy your faith is you. Christians, in general, are often accused of being very closed-minded, and there’s a reason for that. They are often unwilling to even consider any alternatives other than what was learned through religious indoctrination. You see, statistically, people’s religions are highly correlated with where they live, and the religion of their parents. They grow up in an area with certain common religious beliefs, they are indoctrinated as children, and that’s it. There is often little or no study of other religions, or even examination of the truth of their own beliefs. You became a Christian as a child. Case closed. No need to think anymore. Mental sheep.
And it was Jesus who said, “He who is not with Me is against Me, and he who does not gather with Me scatters abroad” (Matt. 12:30).
Again with the Bible. And wasn’t Jesus pretty closed-minded with his with me or against me stance? Isn’t Jesus about love, acceptance, and tolerance? That quote exudes none of those traits. That quote is full of hatred, intolerance, and closed-mindedness. Besides, if I’m not with you, why do I have to be against you? Must we be enemies? Can’t we agree to disagree? It seems your Jesus was very tolerant…of those just like him. How very Christian.
Building atheist megachurches is drawing people—whether they are already atheists, agnostic or just don’t know what they believe—away from true worship.
Worship is an absolutely awful thing. Just think about what that word means for a moment, and ask yourself if worshiping anything is appropriate. And use of the word true doesn’t actually make it true (worship).
We’re now competing with aggressive atheists to win the hearts and minds of lost souls on Sunday mornings.
Atheists don’t believe in souls. That is a religious construct. And it isn’t competition when one relies on facts, and the other faith. Personally, I prefer to accept what is true, rather than what feels good on Sunday mornings. My beliefs and knowledge are always up for debate. I welcome it. And if what I believe is proven untrue, I stop believing that thing. Can you do that, Jennifer?
Some atheists are taking another approach: infiltrating the church to plant seeds of doubt. I wrote about that in a recent column, “Wolves in Sheep’s Clothing Actively Working in Pentecostal Church.” An unbeliever I call “Wolf” because he won’t reveal his true identity details his plans to integrate with a friend into a “highly conservative religious community without informing the community that [they] are skeptics,” then look for opportunities to minister and serve before his planned apostasy takes place about a year later. Wolf’s self-proclaimed personal Lord and Savior is named “Doubt.”
I can’t speak to this, although it sounds like an interesting social experiment.
All of this was in November alone, as was the revelation that atheists are using the YouVersion of the Bible to evangelize unbelief. Some atheists are trying to position themselves as “friendly,” like Hemant Mehta, author of the Friendly Atheist blog who offered to raise money to cover the medical bills of a pastor who was attacked by a militant atheist.
Have you met Hemant? He’s a really nice guy. He’s one of my favorite atheist bloggers. And he did more than offer to raise money for medical bills, he actually did it. And he’s raised money for lots of others things, too. Let’s not forget that. He’s a giver, as are many atheists. The only difference is, when we help the needy, it doesn’t come with strings attached, like a sermon, or literature. To us, helping is the primary goal of charity, the only goal really. It seems that many Christians use charity as a conduit to proselytize. That’s not right.
But some atheists are still angry, including long-distance swimmer Diana Nyad who got up in arms against Oprah because she wouldn’t acknowledge Nyad’s atheism.
You’ve completely misrepresented this situation. Oprah was somehow trying to convince Nyad that she wasn’t what she actually was. I think Oprah wanted Nyad to be spiritual, and tried to convince her of such. Unfortunately, the person that gets to define Nyad is Nyad, not Oprah. If I was being interviewed on national TV, and the interviewer misrepresented something about me, I’d be quick to correct them, too.
Oprah’s October Super Soul Sunday program sparked a firestorm in the atheist community, which refuses to be marginalized in its year of momentum.
Why wouldn’t any group refuse to be marginalized? Would you like to be marginalized? Do you think that marginalizing people who aren’t like you is OK? You shouldn’t. That’s bigotry.
It goes on and on and on. I’ve just offered a few examples from October and November. So here’s the question: Could an atheist talk you out of your faith? Don’t answer too quickly.
Only you can talk yourself out of your own faith. Atheists don’t deal in faith. We deal in facts. Faith is not part of our lives, nor should it be.
Gay activists have already succeeded in getting many Christians—even pastors and bishops—to compromise the Word of God for the sake of inclusion, unity and perhaps fear of persecution. If the gay agenda can convince Christian leaders to pervert the gospel, then is it so far-fetched to think the atheist agenda could cause believers to doubt what they believe?
Let’s get this straight. Inclusion is good. Unity is good. Persecution is bad. Apparently, you think the opposite. Personally, I find it deplorable that you would use a 2,000-year-old book, written by anonymous authors, rewritten and voted on (council of Nicea) to justify bigotry, hatred, and intolerance, towards people who are not like you. That is deplorable. You should be ashamed of yourself for your petty, sad, pathetic, homophobic idiocy. You are a child.
I don’t think so. I believe all of these forces—the gay agenda, the atheist agenda and other humanist agendas—are converging on the church in this hour. Peter warned us that the “adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour” (1 Pet. 5:8). That devil doesn’t always look like a devil or sound like a roaring lion. More often he sounds like tolerance or doubt. Much of the battle still rests in the minds of the believer. What will we ultimately believe? Will we take the Word of God literally, or will we look at it through the eyes of the spirit of the world?
I urge you not to compromise the Word of God for any agenda. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: The great falling away isn’t too far away (2 Thess. 2:1-4). Those who endure to the end shall be saved (Matt. 24:13). That said, don’t fear these devilish agendas. Remember, Jesus said, “I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it” (Matt. 16:18).
Translation: More gibberish.