Last month a pentecostal preacher died during a snake handling service in America. Although I’m not aware of any UK pentecostals who practice snake handling I thought I’d best describe myself as Pentecostal Light to show where I was at. Just as there are pentecostals who go way beyond what God expects there are atheists who go way beyond what reason concludes. This leads to my observation that there are also such people as Atheists Light or athiests with a small a. Not all atheists are extreme and closed to reason, many are open to intelligent and sensible debate. The bible says, “The fool says in his heart there is no God,” Psalm 14:1, but most atheists say so with their mouth, not with an aggressive and militant heart condition that prevents them carefully weighing the matter in their mind. I call them Atheists Light! If this was a pub rather than a blog I’d say this is Atheists Light v’s Atheists Bitter!
In 1912 many Brits thought they were christians in a ‘christian country’. If you asked them had they had been born again and baptised by full immersion they would think you were from a sect and if you mentioned the the Holy Spirit, healings, signs and wonders… well they would probably think you should be sectioned! Nonetheless, they honestly thought they were christians and it was the task of people who knew the Lord to help them go from thinking they were christians to really knowing Christ as their saviour. Today, in 2012, many think they are atheists because they were born into what they believe to be a post religious age in a scientific culture. Lots of people honestly think they have been born into a ‘secular country’ and that being a christian is unreasonable, often not quite grasping what a real christian is. But just as someone saying they are a christian does not mean they are a christian someone claiming they are an atheist does not mean they bitterly deny God’s existence.
The bible says, “Put on your new nature, and be renewed as you learn to know your Creator and become like him.” Col 3:10 (New Living Translation). Consider the cosmos and all it’s mechanical brilliance, gravity, relativity and order. Did these really all fall into place, in every place at that, by chance after chance? If so, what are the equations and mathematical chances of it all happening? The DNA involved in a blade of grass is far more complex than the score for the most complex symphony and the thinking person would doubt all of those notes on the music score could be neatly written by chance when an ink well exploded onto papers that were there by chance at the same time, or slowly even that they dripped into place over eons, so why would they believe something significantly more complex like a blade of grass could arrive by the same method? The atheist who has determined ‘in their heart’ there is no God will refuse to consider even the most reasoned argument, but the atheist with a small a who is brave enough to challenge their own position there is an opportunity to know God. Yes, there is hope for the Atheist Light.
I limit these wee blogs to a maximum of 600 words so I can’t go as deep as I’d like, but I encourage you to buy the book God’s Undertaker by John Lennox and watch the Veritas debates on Youtube. These are for thinking people who want to reason and sharpen their understanding, not those hard in heart. Atheists Light!