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Evangelical Atheists


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Initial post: Mar 11, 2012 12:05:05 PM PDT
Lately my wife and I have been going over church history from the reformation until now, and it occurs to us that while we don't agree with everything about the reformation (we are via media fans a la Richard Hooker) we think the reformation was well intentioned and Protestant theology would have been fine had it not been for the likes of Charles Finney and his warped view of Calvinism, along with some of the other 1800's movements like the Millerites, Jehovah's Witnesses, Seventh Day Adventists, Mormons, etc.

Much of the teachings of this time go from just plain wrong to blasphemous, yet it is these teachings that atheists and other non-believers expect mainstream Catholics and Protestants to defend in these debates - beliefs we don't even hold. If we try to tell them that, they will insist that we do, and attempt to "proof text" their way into an explanation, the same way fundamentalist evangelical types do.

For this reason I have come to refer to them as "Evangelical Atheists" (which is a word in the Urban Dictionary), because their beliefs about Christianity are not a whole lot different from (say) a Jehovah's Witness, especially when they start attacking the Catholic church.

Any of you atheists want to tell me where I am wrong?

Posted on Mar 11, 2012 12:23:48 PM PDT
Tammy says:
*taking cover*

Posted on Mar 11, 2012 12:27:36 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Mar 11, 2012 12:28:12 PM PDT
Well, I thought I would give them something to talk about other than gay marriage, abortion, birth control, Sarah Palin, and Rush Limbaugh.

Posted on Mar 11, 2012 12:33:42 PM PDT
A Customer says:
I always did like that top definition of evangelical atheist in urban dictionary, it's pretty damn accurate.

Posted on Mar 11, 2012 12:40:05 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Mar 26, 2012 7:50:05 AM PDT
Hello Fingers,

What I find is the profusion of statements by most Christians that are unsubstantiated and lack any kind of evidence at all. The quoting of bible scriptures is for some reason is thought to be evidence by many Christians. When I am discussing on these forums, I challenge the person making an extraordinary claim (i.e. Resurrections, virgin births etc...) to provide some archeological evidence, artifacts to support the claims that these events actually happened. An independent source that is not tied to Christianity to verify that these happened.

Some Christians will say "But we do provide evidence." No. Actual evidence is not provided. A lot of wishful thinking and wanting something to be evidence does not make it so. What is provided is a lot hearsay. Hearsay which are statements, quotes etc... that can not be verified, validated or corroborated by outside independent sources is not evidence. The so called evidence that is provided definitely would not survive a peer review in science and would not even hold up in a court. Speaking of our American court system, evidence is something that can be tested or analyzed such as DNA, a weapon, fingerprints etc... Reciting second, third or fourth hand what someone else may or may not have said years ago is hearsay. The Bible as evidence for past events would not hold up in a court of law. It is not a reliable source and is not even corroborated by outside independent sources.

Based upon my observations and meeting with apologists for theism is that most Christians seem to think that people are just going to accept a statement without evidence. It may have been true 30 or 40 years ago, but people now are questioning and asking on what authority is Christian doctrine factual and "truth." Christians for the most part are not accustom to someone or a group of people not going along and accepting the dogma just because it is uttered or preached from the pulpit. Atheists are asking for Christians (Muslims as well) to start producing some hard concrete evidence that can be tested or verified. People are beginning to not just blindly accept what comes down from the preacher who is up on stage with a microphone being a drama queen or king with tearful pleadings for everyone to accept Jesus into their hearts.

Religion has had a free ride for many, many years in the United States. Christians for the most part are not accustom to having their faith and religion questioned with Atheists deeming it as false and a fraud which has been put upon H. sapiens. (This goes for all religions, not just Christianity~I speak of Christianity because it is the majority in the US).

Atheism is non-belief. Nothing more. Atheists are just not suffering in silence anymore and are voicing their disbelief. Challenging those making the extraordinary claims to back up their extraordinary claims and statements with something more than just words and biblical quotes or the Bible. People are wising up and are not readily willing to blindly accept something just because it is purported to be so by someone with self perceived authority and knowledge who stands behind a podium in a church.

As an Atheist myself, I view what is put forth by the religious as outlandish, extraordinary stories that are also crazy in nature that have no basis in reality which lack evidence. Religion also attempts to control people (As we see in some Muslim countries such as Iran) in how they dress, act and think. I view religion as an albatross around the neck of humanity. For some strange reason, many people want to be enslaved and don't mind groveling on their knees. Treat your fellow humans with respect and dignity and for cryin' out loud, get off your knees bowing to an imaginary god and invest more time relating to your fellow humans.

Have a good day.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 11, 2012 1:04:04 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Mar 11, 2012 1:04:52 PM PDT
Well, I can appreciate that, because, as a scientist, I find that the profusion of statements made by most people who claim to be "scientific" are more superstition than science.

Now then, one of the problems with Evangelical Atheists is that, should you make a statement that should be intuitively obvious to even the most casual observer, such as "Thou shall not murder", you will be treated to a barrage of non-sequiturs such as "oh yeah, can you prove the world was created in six days?" or "there never was a ship the size of Noah's", and so on.

You yourself have shown your lack of knowledge by equating Christianity to Islam (waaay different animals) then asking people to back up their claims. Well, they do, sir, they do it with hospitals, orphanages, and universities, and may I add that some of the greatest scientists of all time were Christians. That is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. Their works, saints like Mother Theresa. St. Hermione, speak for themselves. They don't do it for their health, you know. I daresay that Christian people have done more to serve the people of the world throughout history while atheistic governments have murdered more people than we have saved in the 20th century alone.

You say you don't believe in God, then go in peace. But you are beyond non-belief. You advocate a belligerent anti religious bias that is quite unscientific.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 11, 2012 1:16:12 PM PDT
A Customer says:
Watch out. Next he'll be demanding you give him a mathematical equation or a formula from physics that supports the notion that God exists.

Yes, believe it or not he has said that to me ;)

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 11, 2012 1:19:12 PM PDT
Kevin Bold says:
I love it when someone who says "There's no proof that God exists" turns out to have no idea at all what such proof would look like.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 11, 2012 1:23:30 PM PDT
"Watch out. Next he'll be demanding you give him a mathematical equation or a formula from physics that supports the notion that God exists."

Actually, I can give him a logical formula for the existence of God - one need look no farther than Godel, among others:

Definition 1: x is God-like if and only if x has as essential properties those and only those properties which are positive
Definition 2: A is an essence of x if and only if for every property B, x has B necessarily if and only if A entails B
Definition 3: x necessarily exists if and only if every essence of x is necessarily exemplified
Axiom 1: If a property is positive, then its negation is not positive.
Axiom 2: Any property entailed by-i.e., strictly implied by-a positive property is positive
Axiom 3: The property of being God-like is positive
Axiom 4: If a property is positive, then it is necessarily positive
Axiom 5: Necessary existence is positive
Axiom 6: For any property P, if P is positive, then being necessarily P is positive.
Theorem 1: If a property is positive, then it is consistent, i.e., possibly exemplified.
Corollary 1: The property of being God-like is consistent.
Theorem 2: If something is God-like, then the property of being God-like is an essence of that thing.
Theorem 3: Necessarily, the property of being God-like is exemplified.

The point is that to speak of a First Cause of the universe is not "outlandish" or "extraordinary".

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 11, 2012 1:25:36 PM PDT
Amon says:
I haven't been approached by an "evangelical atheist" before. What are they like? How many do you know personally? Do you acknowledge that they're are problems within the Catholic church or no? I personally don't know many vocal atheist. Even when I was atheist it was something I kept to myself and only spoke about when asked.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 11, 2012 1:26:29 PM PDT
"I love it when someone who says "There's no proof that God exists" turns out to have no idea at all what such proof would look like."

That's kind of like the one about why God does not intervene when tragedy strikes - when He does, it's not a tragedy any longer.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 11, 2012 1:27:31 PM PDT
"I haven't been approached by an "evangelical atheist" before. What are they like? How many do you know personally? Do you acknowledge that they're are problems within the Catholic church or no?"

See what I mean about the non-sequiturs?

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 11, 2012 1:28:24 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Mar 11, 2012 1:30:04 PM PDT
Amon says:
The questions aren't any form of argument, they're serious questions.

Posted on Mar 11, 2012 1:28:54 PM PDT
Fingers,

What you have written is very weak indeed. Full of old worn out canards that have been already discussed on these forums dozens of times in the past 5 years. Your post is filling with theistic rhetoric that is tired I'm afraid and anyone reading your post will recognize it as such. I gave you an honest assessment from the point of view of an Atheist and you reacted in a predictable manner. There is no need for further discourse. You are going to believe what you want to believe and I am going to make assessments based upon evidence that is available and reject anything that is not supported or substantiated with evidence.

Have a good day

Posted on Mar 11, 2012 1:31:38 PM PDT
Go in peace, then, your posts are filled with the atheistic rhetoric that I have argued against for over a decade. This ain't my first rodeo, either, dude.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 11, 2012 1:33:03 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Mar 11, 2012 1:37:32 PM PDT
"The questions aren't any form of argument, they're serious questions."

What does the Catholic church (of which I am not a member, by the way) have to do with the topic at hand? I only mentioned it because it seems to be the favorite target of Jehovah's Witnesses, Fundamentalists, and non-believers.

(That's almost everybody...)

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 11, 2012 1:36:12 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Mar 11, 2012 1:38:21 PM PDT
Amon says:
You mentioned it in your OP and I assumed you were defending it. Could you possibly answer the other questions?

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 11, 2012 1:38:10 PM PDT
Kevin Bold says:
Fingers says: That's kind of like the one about why God does not intervene when tragedy strikes - when He does, it's not a tragedy any longer.

The god of the atheist is the god of the Sunday schoolchild. He keeps bad things from happening to good people and says "Yes" to every prayer. But that "god" doesn't exist, so the atheist concludes there's no god at all.

For example, what if, on September 11, a worm hole opened in front of each of the hijacked planes and took them to the Mojave desert? Atheists would still deny that a miracle had happened.

Posted on Mar 11, 2012 1:39:26 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Mar 11, 2012 1:41:59 PM PDT
"You mentioned it in your OP and I assumed you were defending it. Could you possibly answer the other questions?"

No, I have no defense of either their theology or of some of the scandals they are embroiled in, although I have a great admiration for some of their traditions and their saints of old. They seem to be a favorite target.

I mostly run into Evangelical atheists on the internet, but it is my opinion that Richard Dawkins is an Evangelical Atheist. He should stick to biology, he knows very little about Christianity.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 11, 2012 1:42:49 PM PDT
Kevin Bold says:
"Evangelical" atheists get their name from their zeal in speaking out, their eagerness to argue, their desire to win others to their side, and there infantile fear of those who disagree with them.

There's really nothing else to call them.

Posted on Mar 11, 2012 1:44:27 PM PDT
Indeed, that is the most descriptive thing to say.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 11, 2012 1:46:27 PM PDT
Amon says:
Well the atheists I know seem to have a disdain (not the best word to use) for all forms of religion. I've never seen an atheist prefer Protestantism over Catholicism, in my personal life or on this forum. Never heard a Jehovah Witness attack the Catholic church either. I thought the Catholic church was filled with fundamentalist but I may be wrong as I've never attended a Catholic church.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 11, 2012 1:47:39 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Mar 11, 2012 1:49:26 PM PDT
A Customer says:
I kind of like Atheist Fundie myself, that one captures the intolerance as well.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 11, 2012 2:02:23 PM PDT
"I thought the Catholic church was filled with fundamentalist but I may be wrong as I've never attended a Catholic church."

To the best of my knowledge, "fundamentalist" refers to the brand of Protestantism promulgated by the likes of Charles Finney, during the revivalism period in the 1800's and 1900's, which, as I said, is neither mainstream Protestantism or Catholic. They seem to espouse a brand of Calvinism while rejecting John Calvin himself.

Jehovah's Witnesses will attack any mainstream religion if you give them enough time, but they particularly hate the RCC. Their own literature depicts God striking down mainstream church buildings on the last day.

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 11, 2012 2:17:59 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Mar 11, 2012 3:58:58 PM PDT
Amon says:
What's your religion? If you don't mind me asking.
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Discussion in:  Christianity forum
Participants:  42
Total posts:  602
Initial post:  Mar 11, 2012
Latest post:  Jun 8, 2012

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