Assessing the rhetoric of the God-haters:
Those who hate God and religion – especially Christianity – like to pride themselves in how intelligent they are and how reasonable they are. Well, that can be true on occasion. But the opposite can also certainly be true. Sometimes atheists and secularists can say the dumbest things.
Over the years I have featured some of their pronouncements. Here I just want to briefly look at two recent examples as found on the social media. There is nothing all that special about either one. In fact, they are simply representative of a wide variety of such thinking that we find from the misotheists and Christophobes.
So let me address each one. The first has to do with a meme that someone had posted on the social media. It simply had a pic of a church sign with the words: “God has never stopped being good – we’ve just stopped being grateful.” Hmm, nothing too terrible about that I would have thought.
But one quite ornery and angry atheist went all hysterical and retorted:
Grateful for childhood leukaemia? I’m afraid you’re on your own being grateful for that shite.
How about the fact that pneumonia, diarrhoea and malaria were responsible for approximately 30 per cent of global deaths among children under the age of 5?
What sort of benevolent , caring, nurturing, ALL POWERFUL god does that and wants gratitude for it?
Hmm, so let me see if I got this right: Anything and everything bad and unpleasant in life is ALL directly due to God – it is ALL God’s fault. Even the God that is said not to exist! But I am quite sure that this very same fellow would be the very first to argue that anything good in life is not from God but from humans and their good choices.
This is quite common from the God haters: God does not exist and all goodness and love and altruism can be fully explained quite apart from God. But at the same time all evil that we find must be due to some terrible God who is out to get us. Man gets all the praise for any good we come upon, while God gets all the blame for any bad stuff in life.
Um, obviously you cannot have it both ways. Either there is no God, period, so leave him out of the discussion, or if there is a God, why not let him get a bit of credit for that which is good? But let me tease this out a bit further. This fellow dealt with what we call natural evils: floods, tornadoes, illnesses, and so on.
But a few things can be said. First, some natural evils do indeed have some human causes, at least to some extent. If you have polluted drinking water, it might be because of a factory upstream dumping a lot of toxic sludge into the river.
If a person is dying of lung cancer, it might be because of his 40-year-long three-packs-a-day cigarette habit. We humans, in other words, need to take at least some responsibility and shoulder some of the blame for at least some of the natural evils that exist.
And while the theist can argue that there might be good reasons for God to allow certain things to happen, and that some natural disasters and the like can have some good outcomes that God is bringing about, what is the alternative for the atheist?
All he can do is say ‘crap happens’. There is no rhyme or reason for it, and we will never see any vindication or justice for the ills of the world – including those caused by mankind. Thus moral evil (murder, rape, torture) and so on simply happens, and many people seem to simply get away with it. There is no future judgment to help rectify things. Atheists like Dawkins can only say that this is life, so get used to it.
But I have spoken to these matters in much more detail in earlier pieces on this site. This article for example – which does feature quotes by Dawkins and others – is worth looking at in this regard: billmuehlenberg.com/2020/07/03/suffering-and-worldviews/
My second example has to do with what I saw online about Labor party policy regarding religious schools. We all knew Labor was overwhelmingly the party of the secular left, but having recently won the Australian federal election, they are quickly showing us who they really are.
A news item had this headline: “Labor to scrap school chaplaincy program’s religious requirement”. The article opened as follows: “Schools will once again be able to access non-religious student welfare officers under the National School Chaplaincy Program, Education Minister Jason Clare announced today. The Chaplaincy Program has been controversial since its inception under the Howard Government.”
So the State will meddle with religious education, and insist that some workers at these schools can believe whatever they like. Being assured of Christian staff will no longer be the way Christian activities can proceed. They may well be forced to employ or utilise those who may have values and beliefs totally at odds with Christianity.
It does not take much thought to see how harmful this is, if we simply turn a few things around. Let’s apply this to political parties for example. That is, will Labor drop its own Labor requirements and prerequisites? Can Liberals or Greens or One Nation politicians now join the Labor party and run as Labor candidates? If not, why not?
If it is no big deal to force Christian activities (and Christian schools) to hire non-Christians, or even those totally opposed to Christianity, all in the name of fairness and anti-discrimination, then why not have the same standards in politics? Why is the Labor party not also going down this path itself? Does it not think that fairness, equality, diversity and tolerance apply to political parties as well?
Once again we see the double standards of the secular left. Christians are expected to roll over and play dead, happily going along with Statist coercion and interference in the way Christian institutions function. But radical political parties are to be kept immune from the same sort of treatment.
But no surprises here. Just the same old same old. As I say, the secularists can say the silliest – and often the most duplicitous and irrational – things. We have come to expect this from them.
I just noticed an interesting news item that is relevant to my second example. Some folks might criticise what I wrote there by saying that if government funding is involved, then there should be no requirements about the faith or otherwise of religious school employees. Anyone should be allowed in.
But in America at least a brand new decision by the Supreme Court took a different view of things: As one article put it:
The Supreme Court on Tuesday ruled that Maine violated the Constitution when it refused to make public funding available for students to attend schools that provide religious instruction. The opinion by Chief Justice John Roberts was a broad ruling, making clear that when state and local governments choose to subsidize private schools, they must allow families to use taxpayer funds to pay for religious schools. www.scotusblog.com/2022/06/court-strikes-down-maines-ban-on-using-public-funds-at-religious-schools/